What’s Up? (1/15/15)

Coffee-Sleep Ratio
So yesterday really tested how much I could function on a bad night of sleep and a nice cup of cappuccino. What I found was that through my Piano and Poetry courses, up until Roman Civilization – I could handle it. I played piano well, discussed poetry like a normal person, ate, had coffee, read Moby Dick for two hours. It was like I had gotten eight hours of sleep. Who could tell? Except when I made it to Gender, Sexuality, and Women’s Studies. “How’s you’re day?” “Well, I’m running on three hours sleep, ha, ha.” —I realized that little tidbit of information is more alarming to people, than charming.— During that class I started to zone out, not be as happy and smiley as I should be. I also did the math and realized I’d be away from my apartment for a full 12 hours by the time I got back.

On Hunger
With fifteen-minute chunks between classes on Wednesday, my food options are rather limited. There was a window where I could have quickly gobbled down a Chicken Sandwich, but it didn’t feel right. I mean, it had been hours since I had a bagel and cappuccino, I was starving. And there they were, a rack of Chicken Sandwiches, Chicken Nuggets, Fries, all from Chik-Fil-A. And it just… oh. It just didn’t feel right. Hand my money to Chik-Fil-A, then go take a Gender-Sexuality class. Make a small donation to “Pray the Gay Away” camps and “Defense of Marriage” organizations, and then go learn about intersectional oppression. It’s not like eating at Chik Fil-A is an inherently bad act, but once you know where the money’s going, it feels like a two-faced, ignorant act. So that’s another thing that made (1/14/15) pretty messed up – hunger.

On Balance
Podcasting, Society6, WordPress, Linkedin, Bandcamp, Moby Dick, Sappho Was A Right-On Woman, Piano, Vagina Monologues… Many assets. Many facets. Accounts. Passwords. Assignments. Projects.

Content Creator.

Content Consumer.

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What’s Up? (4/21/14)

6 AM, going to hit it again. Twice actually, this weekend.

The first time, in all fairness, was pretty pleasant. Watching the Shanghai Gran Prix was absolutely fantastic. It couldn’t compare to the Bahrain Gran Prix from two weeks ago, but definitely worth staying up until 5AM to see the end of the race live. My boy Nico Rosberg couldn’t vie for 1st, but I was happy to see him recover to 2nd after a rough qualifying session and rougher race start. Nice to see Alonso make it to the podium, and for Ricciardo to overtake Vettel. Rooting for anybody but Lewis Hamilton come May 11th’s Barcelona Gran Prix. (By the way, it felt great to sit down for the start of a sporting event at 3AM when everybody else is in Pittsburgh is winding down or asleep; I’m meant to watch live sports in different time zones).

The second 6AM, the one I’m in right now; also not unpleasant. Do I want to be up? I mean, I wouldn’t be writing this if I didn’t. At this point, I’d be happier spending another fifteen minutes writing rather than not recording this mindset somewhere. Still, I wish I could have finished some of those essays earlier – but I’m a stickler for detail. Honestly, I could have turned it all in back at 4AM, but proofreading turned out to be incredibly valuable. Would I have lost any points for writing “show” where I meant to write “shop?” Probably not, but it’s my final paper and I give a shit about things like that. If I’m going to be up this late working, it might as well be for some quality work.

I’m not out of the woods yet though; the final and most dry and boring of all papers must be written later today, for World Literature. Gayle, if you’re reading this right now, I’m sorry – it’s not your class that’s dry – it’s the prospect of writing a few thousand words about it. Still, the semester is over in less than 48 hours. I can see the light at the end of the tunnel… though that may just as easily be the sunrise coming through my window.

Ease yourself on down
And if you’re bound and frowned 
You better put it on down 
‘Cause 4am, gonna hit it again 

What’s Up? (2/12/14)

I don’t even dislike not getting sleep anymore. When the nights come where I have to work until daylight in order to finish assignments, I don’t hate myself for waiting until it was too late to finish something, I’m not even upset; I just deal with the fact that what needs to get done, will get done, no matter what. It’s 8 AM on 2/13/14, so I’m actively lying by calling this the 2/12/14 edition of What’s Up, but I don’t care. This is what was up yesterday: I knew I’d be here, doing this, I knew as far back as Sunday night that I’d be here. In my naivety I thought I’d be done with work by 5 AM, har!

That might have been the case, but I gave away about an hour and a half more than I needed to, in order to read some of One Hundred Years of Solitude  by Gabriel Garcia Marquez. That book was worth it though, it reminds me of East of Eden by John Steinbeck, because it tells this rich, large-family, multi-generational story. So an hour and a half went to reading, and another hour went to watching this week’s Broad City and The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson. “Oh what a waste of time” you say, but you’d be wrong. I’d rather enjoy one last hour of fun, and finish the day at 8 AM, than working through the night to finish at 7 AM. If you ask me, keeping yourself happy is more important than adding an hour or two to the nap of a night’s sleep you’re going to get, if any.

Which, I’m undecided right now actually, about whether or not to sleep. See, staying up through an all-nighter really reminds me of taking classes at Pitt over the summer, and do you remember what I liked to do on the mornings of all-nighters? Exercise! That’s right, like a freaking lunatic. Yes. I am actually considering heading up to The Peterson Events Center gym, (if it’s open) and getting in maybe thirty minutes of rowing, before coming downhill, having a bagel at Bruegger’s, and well, who knows after that. I tell you what, I’d be much happier with going to the gym right now, than getting three or four measly hours of sleep before I’d have to wake up and get ready for class and yadda-yadda-yadda.

You get the picture, the horrible, twisted picture. This is life, now, living.

What’s Up? (1/28/14)

It bothers me a little bit that, while it’s the 28th while I’m writing this post, in my time zone at least, WordPress has the final say, and wherever they are, it’s the 29th. Regardless, let’s get started.

It’s a beautiful day! I mean, not physically, because it’s below zero, wet, snowy, windy, and all of that great stuff. No, it’s a great day because for the second day in the row I feel a rejuvenated spirit, and a very clear sense of self. On Monday, I gave a speech to my Advanced Public Speaking class about how shitty the labels “masculine” and “feminine” are, and it felt great. It wasn’t the first time that I’ve vented that opinion before, I’ve written about it in essays before, and people have read my essays before – and used female pronouns to describe me, the anonymous writer, but it was the first time I got out in front of people, in the open, and talked about it. I was high on spirit, for a long time afterwards too! The feeling lasted hours after I spoke, and was only interrupted by discovering that I had to write a 7-page assignment by Tuesday.

It took me until 5:40 AM to finish that assignment, and while exhausting, I felt really good about what I had created, and the physical exhaustion that comes from sleep deprivation is intoxicating. I start laughing more often, usually for no reason, I dance to music, and do really dumb things and well, sleep deprivation is not the worst thing there is.

Jump to: Tuesday night at 9PM, for the Campus Women’s Organization’s “Why I Need Feminism” event. Perhaps unsurprisingly, I appeared to be the only dude; I struggle to be politically correct on this, because there are so many ways to say this incorrectly. That’s not really important though, what’s important is that, it felt great to be there. To hear people vent all of the shitty ways they’ve been treated, or seen others treated, or treated themselves, because they were women, to be in a place of such therapy felt therapeutic. I belong there, I felt like I belonged, though I don’t know where my place to contribute is, perhaps it’s only to talk about the horrors I’ve witnessed. I’ve certainly suffered, as a man, in unfair ways, because gender norms, suck – but I’m not going to jump the gun on venting that in the open, not when there are girls who are given knives to protect themselves, and taught how not to get raped. Besides the philosophical struggle, I was so happy I went, and I think I met some really cool people who could be friends.

This is how great the day’s been: I’m actively missing out on The Daily Show and The Colbert Report to talk to you about this.

Leaving Pittsburgh In Three Hours

…Well I’m leaving the apartment in three hours at the very least. Then I’m taking an hour long bus ride to Pittsburgh International, and by nine o’clock I’ll be on an hour long flight home to Long Island. I just peeked outside, and the snow has stopped for now, the very snow which prompted the rescheduling of my flight home from Wednesday to Tuesday. I’ve never rescheduled a flight before, it’s an expensive ordeal, but I’m thankful for the opportunity to fly home a day early, and outside of the looming chaos that is snowstorm-meets-Thanksgiving travel.

I’m all packed up, but the prospect of getting two hours of sleep before a flight really doesn’t interest me. It never has. I have this thing; and I might have written about it before, about sleeping before flights. First of all, I’m too excited to sleep easily, secondly I’m going to be nervous about oversleeping somehow and missing a flight, and finally I just think that an airport is best enjoyed in a low-energy state. You get in and you stand on line, listen to music, read, and a whole bunch of other very non-taxing things.

There’s still time to kill, and I’d think about putting on a few records if it wasn’t so late. Sure, I could throw in some headphones, but I want to dance to my music, I want to play it loud. I’ll maybe do some reading to pass the time, or pace around the room trying to remember what I could have forgotten to pack. I’m not against starting some art projects with my remaining time, or crawling into my bed for warmth and comfort and very intentionally not sleep. 

What’s Up? (9/19/13)

I just woke up. It’s 4 AM. I fell asleep around 10:30 PM. Man oh man, if this is not seriously screwed up – but I suppose every once in a while I’m just bound to have seriously screwed up sleep schedules given the way I live my life. When one day you’re sleeping for ten hours, and five hours the next – I don’t know how I handle it, but I don’t know any other way.

At many points this week I wanted to write all the horrible things that happened to me, but by the next day I couldn’t recall the horrible things – just the good things. I vaguely remember Monday morning just not working out as intended, but I perfectly remember how fun watching Monday Night Football with my friends was. I remember going through another existential crisis during Small Group Communications on Tuesday, but I more perfectly remember making meatballs by hand and having a great time at the Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr. concert. And today? There was absolutely nothing bad about today. Today was everything I could ask for mostly. As selfish as it is, I love it when my writing gets attention during English classes; when everybody reads my paper I realize the changes I should have made, but I’m also filled with this sense of accomplishment. I had a free lunch at Market for the first time this semester thanks to some new friends, and following that I got all of my work done for another class just in time to make it to said class.

Basically, today was good and I’m not about to let some weird 10:30 PM – 4 AM nap/sleep thing ruin a good day. I’m going to have some food and drink, watch something funny, and finish the day with a 5 AM – 10 PM rest. Of course things will work just as planned. Of course.

On Recovering From Bad Days

Things were going well today, I slept amazing after only getting three hours of sleep the previous night. I had a tasty, if not rushed breakfast. I had a delicious second breakfast a few hours later. Media and consumer culture was interesting as ever, and Dr. Paterson’s charming British accent and soft voice could lift the dreariest spirits. However, during Small Group Communications I kind of lost “it.” This of no fault of Mr. Dutcher, but during the class my mind was flooded with all sorts of fears, regrets, paranoia, thoughts of loneliness and of sexual desires. These were by no means day-dreams I allowed myself but rather a constant storm of thoughts that I tried and failed to brush off. The class ended and I raced to get home and relax. On the way I filled up my water thermos and proceeded to drop it and spill the entire contents all over Posvar Hall. I saw people staring at me. I picked up the now empty thermos and just walked out of there as fast as possible, embarrassed and angry. On the way home I abandoned my usual confidence with crossing the street in front of cars and instead waited for all the cars to get out of the way first, and I cursed my awkwardness. All of this, while in sweltering near 90’s heat and self conscious about my sweaty appearance.

When I got home I didn’t lay down and let myself think about how bad the day was, and try to sleep it off. I did things. I watched dumb Vines, I watched dog videos that made me laugh, I played a little guitar. I went shopping for ingredients, I made a spinach alfredo pizza. On recovering from bad days: have faith in doing things, and keep doing things until things get better.