What’s Up? (2/6/17)

January 2017
I’ve been away for a month, but I’ve had things in order so I guess there wasn’t much to talk about. Coming into 2017 there were just a few things on my to-do list, and all of January was spent focusing on those things. 1) Any weight gained during the holidays has been lost, 2) I went and saw the movies I was meaning to see, La La Land, and Rogue One, and 3) I started putting myself out there again, trying to be and outward social presence.

Gaming
I’m more physically active than ever before, I’m trying to be more social as well — so explain why “Gaming” is the headline here. Well, I suppose, given that I have lost weight, and that I’m making friends outside of the “Pitt Alumni” group, it helps to have something fun and concurrent to do at home alone. Though I haven’t owned a home gaming console in years, and have stuck to a modest laptop for the better part of 5 years, I have recommitted myself to enjoying the hobby of video games more regularly. I’ve been listening to, and watching, nearly 10 hours of Giant Bomb content a week, since 2008, so I never really left the world of video games, even if I stopped playing them as much. Though that being said, I feel like I could probably go for writing a review of Pokemon Sun (2016).

KonMari
I did something very drastic this weekend. I tidied my apartment with the help of Marie Kondo’s “The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing.” Now, typical home tidying would have me finding new ways to hide clutter (shove this there, hide this in the closet, kick this under the couch). I exaggerate a little, but typically that’s how I’d “clean.” With the help of a little audiobook, I discarded most of my clutter, rather than hiding it. What’s more, she helped me redefine many of my possessions as clutter.

Shirts that were going unused, or that had no longer brought me joy, were in my closet for no reason. They were clutter. I’d say my apartment has about 30% fewer clothes in it now, than it did on Friday. I have not completed my work, though you’re supposed to do it all in one fell swoop. The hardest thing to do, would be to let go of some of these books. If a book does not make me happy, then why keep it? I know this will be the hardest step, because I think having a full book shelf is what makes me happy to have a bookshelf at all.

Dry Month
There’s a theme here; less is more. Less clutter, more happiness. Less weight, more movement. Less boredom, more fun. So something I’ve been meaning to try for a while is a dry, alcohol-free, sober month. Why do that? I love cocktails, I like inebriation, I like the social aspects of it!

Well, because less is more? And to an extent, I think drinking a little less, or none at all for a whole month, will give me greater appreciation for it, and greater clarity for how I handle things like stress, and what to do when I’m bored on a weekend. It’s too late to make February my dry month, but I’m eyeballing March. 31 Days of sobriety should also lead to a massive drop in calories consumed. I’m not committing to it yet, but when I do I have to make it public; making it public makes it harder to back down from it.

That could be part of why I keep a public blog like this. A private diary has no stakes. You can confess and make promises, but it’s private, so your confessions and promises only matter as much as you care about yourself? If I tell you, anonymous internet, that I’m going to stop drinking for a month, then I’d be lying if I didn’t follow through. Here’s another public promise: This February I will be reviewing Neon Indian’s “VEGA Intl. Night School” (2015) and La Roux’s “Trouble in Paradise” (2014).

What’s Up? (6/2/15)

LaGuardia Airport. A Tale.
Something changed at the airport. When I sat down at the bar, I felt like I was retreating from chaos. That was an hour ago. Back then, announcements had to be made so that the impatient folk trying to get on the plane would get out of the way for 85 passengers trying to get off the plane. People seemed stressed out, me included.

I arrived at the airport around 3:30 PM, and my 5:55 PM flight was delayed to 8:00PM, then canceled, and I was rebooked for a 8:30PM flight, which was delayed until 9:20.

The time is, right now, 7:53PM. I have no idea whether or not I’ll be on an airplane at 9:20 PM. I have little faith in US Airways, who have canceled two flights on me today.

Still, either the hour has become so late, or the rich alcohol has soothed me so much that LaGuardia has become, tolerable, peaceful even! There has to be, I guess, 80% fewer people. LaGuardia feels empty, and quiet, and I love it. At this level of peace and quiet, I could tell that there were regulars at the airport bar. Regulars at the airport bar. People who fly so often the bartender knows them. Frequent flyers, and frequent drinkers. My type of people.

Myself? I ordered a French 75, a hot pretzel, a Black Russian, and a Negroni, in that order. It was a hefty price for three drinks, but if it buys this type of serenity, then it has no price. I’ve heard of drinking in airports gone wrong, leading to missed flights, or miserable flights, but this is peaceful, this is wonderful, and I feel like I have not been at the airport for five hours.

What’s Up? (2/14/15)

Friday the Thirteenth, Twenty-Fifteen, may be up there for top five best days of life ever.” – 3:36 AM, 14, February, 2015.

The Vagina Monologues
Last night was epic, a word I seldom use without cringing afterwards. When we filled 360-ish chairs for the Thursday night showing of The Vagina Monologues, I was impressed, shocked, and proud…

Then we filled 500+ chairs for the Friday night performance. Then we had to turn away another 100 people who wanted to get in. Then we raised over $2,000. I was ecstatic, hard to contain. Triumphant, face-distorting smiles, and shouts of joy. I was so happy to be a part of this, and I’m glad the show ended with smiles on my friends’ faces. If anything stressed me out about the show the last few days, and the last few weeks, it was so far away in the rear view mirror–that, that… I don’t know! We were flying down this road and the white dashes mixed with the blacktop and became a gray blur.

So I packed my tote bag, Skyy Vodka, lime juice, shaker, ice, and martini glass, and arrived at an after party. And the drinks were good and the conversation kicked ass–“Come on Eileen” was played–and I struggle to finds the words to describe this moment but I must…Because well, there was a moment where most of my friends and acquaintances were just topless and free and I realized this is me. This energy, what it stands for, I love it, and I love them.

What’s Up? (9/8/13)

I’m a little hungover right now. It’s Sunday, and there’s really no time to screw around on Sunday – and so I’m awake. I don’t feel great but if I’m going to start a productive day I might as well start by writing something.

I try to avoid being open about drinking on social media sites, you might notice that there are no pictures of  me holding any alcoholic beverages or anything on Facebook – though I have taken and shared some pretty artsy photos of Vodka bottles. Some of that “Your employers will see you drinking and not hire you” stuff has definitely gotten to me but man – as soon as I’m 21… well nothing might change because I don’t want to seem like a jack-ass that posts pictures of himself drinking all the time. I was open about drinking in an English writing course here at Pitt, describing in short detail how being drunk makes me feel (great). And so I figure if I’m open about drinking for academic purposes then future employers might understand or even appreciate that sort of honesty. I might have set this up with too much pretense, as the only thing I have to say about drinking today is that I’ve made a very good drink this weekend. The recipe comes from a set of Bioshock Infinite inspired “vigor” mixes and it’s called “Possession.” Three fl.oz of Midori, three fl.oz of Blue Curacao, and the rest is just how much lemonade fits in the glass. It’s tasty, and it’s really too sweet – but I don’t exactly have a problem with “too sweet” when it comes to drinks. In any case, since I’ve been making “Possessions” you could say I’ve gotten a little possessed this weekend, and the terminology has been catching onto my roommates.