Blogging Over Beer

Monday, May 4, 2009

Random Happenings in Art and Life

Isn't amazing how one random happening can change the whole course of your day? Like you oversleep and find out later that you missed a huge traffic tie-up on Kellogg. Or you decide at the last minute to drop into a local store only to find the exact thing you've been looking for, and on sale!

Well, I love when life happens like that. One day recently took an unexpected turn for the better. Due to an unexpected change in plans, I ended up stopping by the neighborhood watering hole on the way home from running an errand that managed to take all afternoon. I was tired and hadn't eaten all day, so I decided I wanted one of the establishment's famous burgers and an ice cold beer to go with it. On beer number 2 (it was that kind of a day), I struck up conversation with the guy sitting next to me. It turns out that he and I are neighbors and we really hit it off!

I really didn't see this happening. But, "C" is really cool! We ended up having a really great time the rest of the night. And he agreed that he'd like to hang out again some time.

So, we'll see what happens. He's moving out of state in a few months and I'm not really ready for a relationship, but I think that we should definitely hang out and have fun while he's here.

Here is a link to some random and cool art that I stumbled upon while reading an article on Mental Floss' website. I can't believe the detail that Scott Wade achieves on such a tricky medium! Also the photo at the top of this post is a detailed photo of one of his works. Sure beats someone writing "Wash Me" on your car!

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Really Sick or just faking?

This week on The Today Show with Kathie Lee Gifford and Hoda Kotb, they were debating whether it's okay to call in sick when you really just need a day off. Their exchange created a great debate on their Facebook page and got me thinking. Is it really okay? I just assumed that everyone does this now and then, but maybe I'm wrong. Apparently there are people out there (or maybe just Kathie Lee playing Devil's Advocate) who would never dream of lying about being sick.

These are also probably the same people who go to work when they are sick and expose everyone else. Swine Flu anyone?

I must admit that I have claimed to be sick and stayed home from work even when I felt fine. Usually I did this when I was really exhausted from being overworked, stressed out, or just really tired for whatever reason. I do know someone who calls in sick sometimes when her boss stresses her out or really pisses her off, but I've never been that bold (or petty).

One time I called in sick just to do laundry. Again I was stressed out and overwhelmed and well, I really need to do laundry. I've worn boxers and bikini bottoms as undies and pj pants as slacks to work before (and got away with it by the way), but sometimes you honestly have nothing clean and need to do something about it!

For the most part, I try really hard to just be honest with my boss. I will go above and beyond to get things done, meet deadlines and all of that, but I also expect that by doing that, I will have some "slack" to take an afternoon off or something and not be penalized for it.

Right now I'm so thankful just to have a job that I make myself go even when I don't feel like it. I'm still in my probation period so I need to have perfect attendance and so I have even gone to work sick (unfortunately).

Monday, April 27, 2009

Confidence is key

It's all about confidence.

I've started waiting tables and although I'm still learning the menu and the questions to ask (would you like red sauce or cheese sauce on your enchiladas?), confidence will still get me a tip. Yesterday I was having a really bad day and managed to accidently throw 2 steak knives at a customer! Who knew wooden handles could be slippery? Anyway, I smiled and apologized my way through it and still got a tip. Not a great one, but still, they left me a couple of bucks.

In a job interview confidence is definitely necessary. If you walk in there with any hint of hesitation, act like you think you don't belong or feel you are unworthy, then forget about it. You aren't going to get past that first interview. Sometimes this can be challenging. After being unemployed and broke for a long time, it's really difficult to shake off the air of desperation. But, it's absolutely essential because desperation hangs in the atmosphere like really bad cologne. I think that is why it is always easier to find a job when you already have one. You aren't desperate to find SOMETHING because you already have it. You can take it or leave it. So, my advice is to be sure and bathe in happy thoughts before you walk through the door. Confidence alone won't get you the job, but lack of confidence will definitely keep you from getting a job that you are otherwise qualified for. If you doubt that you are capable, you make the interviewer question whether you are capable as well.

I think that confidence in dating is also important. If you feel unworthy of dating or don't love yourself, then you will either fail to attract anyone at all or you will attract people who don't love you either. That's where I'm at right now. I'm thinking about trying to dip my toe in the dating pool again. I'm sure it's because I'm feeling more optimistic about life right now. I'm still basically homeless and can't drive, but things are better than they were a couple of months ago. And guys are starting to check me out more and flirt more. Of course I'm surrounded by much younger guys at work, but the attention is nice. I'm sure a lot of this has to do with my increased confidence. I'm feeling better and probably looking better. But because I'm not where I want to be in my life, I feel like I should wait. See I wouldn't date a person who lives in their married friends' guest room and doesn't have a car, so I really don't want to date someone who would date me. I know that my situation is temporary, but I feel like I need to make more progress before I can feel confident in attracting the type of person I'm looking for. The difference being that now I feel more confident that I can get there. I will be that person again.

One of my favorite people at work is this really young gay guy. He always tells me how beautiful I am and says he loves me. He has a boyfriend and I wouldn't date him even if he was straight, but he makes work fun. And the adoration is a definite confidence builder.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009


What are you afraid of? Spiders? Tornadoes? Death? There aren't many things that I can think of that I'm afraid of. Okay bees and wasps freak me out. I also have a fear of being alone at night that was mostly cured when I lived alone for 3 years. Before that I had too many freak incidents happen when my roommates were away that I had to sleep with the tv on and phone within arm's reach for a long time. But, on the flip side, I'm frequently described as incredibly brave. I've done things that those who know me would never, ever do. Like inviting a guy I've never met to come visit and stay at my house, or speed dating. One year for my New Year's resolution, I decided to do things that scared me. I decided that I was spending too much time in my comfort zone and needed to shake up the status quo in my life a bit. That year I created an online dating profile and tried speed dating. I had a blast.

As I was taking a cab home the other night, a car accident forced a detour past a church with a sign out front that said something like "don't live life guided by fear." This really got me thinking about the brave things I've done in the past and how I've let my fears paralyze me in recent months. Many things that I was absolutely terrified of have come true. The great guy I was dating left me, I lost my apartment, my cat, and my ability to drive (temporarily). All of these things have happened because I was too terrified to take action to prevent them from happening. Okay, maybe not the break up, but the rest of them for sure.

So I decided to sit down and think about what really scares me now. What am I afraid of now? And after I identify those things, I need to decide what actions to take to prevent them from becoming reality. I'm hopeful that this will prevent more nightmares from coming true in my life.

Although the meaning on the sign at the church was that you should give your life over to God and not fear, I think that there can be wisdom found in it for those of us who are not ready to surrender control to a higher power and those who do not believe.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Can I just be happy for a moment?

So far the week has started out quite well! Spent Sunday at the farm helping my niece celebrate her 3rd Birthday. The celebration was postponed due to the weather the weekend before. Lots of fun seeing the kids and my dad was civil. Difficult for him right now I know, but I'm thankful that he made the effort to not spoil every one's day.

This morning I had an interview at a local restaurant for a server position. I've actually never technically worked as a server, but I managed to talk myself into the interview and got the job! Okay, they hired me as hostess and server trainee but still. I Got a Job people! Yippee!

So I called my sister to let her know and she can't let me be happy for even one moment. She just reminds me that I'll need to work 2 jobs in order to get back on my feet financially. Like duh! As if I did not know this already. I'm living with my extremely generous bff and her family because I'm homeless and I printed off the bus schedules yesterday so I can figure out how to get to and from my job since it's too far to walk. Yeah I'm completely oblivious to my situation here.

I understand that it's probably difficult for those around me to be supportive and I'm sure they can't comprehend what I'm going through right now but I'm always so there for everyone else. I bust my ass to be their biggest supporter and cheerleader and once in awhile it would be nice to have a little in return.

No this job isn't quite my dream job. I didn't spend 3 years at WSU to be a greeter or serve people chips and salsa all day, but it's still a job. It's a small step in the right direction. Can't that be enough, for at least today?

Okay enough ranting...

I was pleased and slightly embarrassed to discover that my humble ramblings have been noticed by Douglasandmain. Writing this blog is a lot like writing in my diary. I write it for my friends to know what I'm going through, but I don't really think about other people reading it. Since I've tried really hard to be anonymous, I cringe to think of who might know who I am. Especially when I think about some posts from last Summer. Anyway, the recognition made me thankful that I've concealed the identity of others mentioned here. I write my thoughts and feelings rather unconsciously and would hate to be sued for defamation or something.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Will Work for Food

Okay, I'm not quite ready to stand out on the street corner with my cardboard sign, but I will say that job hunting is really frustrating right now. The constant rejection makes me doubt that I have any talent at all and wonder how I ever found a decent job in the first place.

Then I realize that I do have talents and wonder how I can get paid for them. No, don't come looking for me on Broadway... mind out of the gutter people!

See, I know that I can write decently. Maybe you've read other posts and disagree, but I've written some decent articles/reports/papers at school and in my working life and received praise for them. So I've been researching this and yet I realize that I'm a very small fish in a large and overpopulated pond. Uggh. Kinda like the Wichita job market right now.

I'm also contemplating applying for a job in my hometown. This would entail moving back home with the parents and likely working with a not-exactly-my-favorite relative. I'm worried that this could cause me to become near suicidal, but also realize that such a step may help me get back on my feet faster. What to do, what to do.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Prayers for the Easter Bunny

Last weekend (the one before the Blizzard), I went to church with the parents. This is something I generally try to avoid at all costs. I actually hadn't been since 2 Christmases ago. For many years I tried faking it and just getting through it, but eventually I became less concerned with trying to make my mom happy and just dropped the charade.

Holidays are still kinda tricky though since attending church is deeply ingrained in our family celebrations. Being unmarried/uncoupled also takes away the "conflicting plans" excuse. Because of this and because I've come to view attending Mass as a "free" gift to my parents, I will occasionally attend on a holiday.

So I'm sitting in the sanctuary and all is well when the priest starts his sermon about finding the light in the darkness of the world. Suddenly the waterworks start flowing! People I started bawling! In church! I was sooo embarrassed and confused. Where did this come from? I successfully hid it from my parents (thank you seasonal allergies), but I'm sure those sitting around me caught on. I haven't cried like that in a church since my former bff's mom's funeral a year ago!

After much reflection though I figured it out. See, I don't have anything against people who go to church. If it works for you, then I am happy for you. And actually I'm a bit jealous. I quit going because I realize that for me, praying to God is just like praying to the Easter Bunny. There is just no meaning there for me.

As much as I wish that I could see God as a beacon of light in the darkness (boy could I use some candle light in the cave right now), I just see him as a mythical icon like Santa or the Tooth Fairy invented to discipline children and control adults (those who no longer believe in Santa).

Yes, I agree that there are mysteries that cannot be explained and that there is a rhyme and rhythm to the Universe, but that all was created by some white haired guy sitting in the clouds? Not so much.

But, rather than mocking. I really wish I did believe. I wish that saying the prayers I learned in childhood meant more to me than as if I was reciting the alphabet. I wish that I could find comfort in sitting in the pew on Sunday. Some days I do, but most days I don't. I feel uncomfortable as if I'd showed up naked or interrupted something.

I wish I could get the warm fuzzy or sense of calm and well-being that most people probably feel by being there. The sense of community- that would be nice too.

That is why I cried. I cried because I wish I felt something that I don't. Kind of like when you go out on a date with a really great person, but don't feel that "spark" that makes you want to see them again.

Maybe I'll find my way back to church and to God, but right now I'm sad.