100 Things…Thing

Posted in 100 Things Thing on October 5, 2014 by Cass

I’m bored, and desperately trying to shake this writer’s block, so I figured I’d see if this helps at all. Ever.

  1. One of my best friends from high school recently asked me to be in her wedding, and I’m super excited.
  2. I think I told you that before.
  3. I just balanced my check book.
  4. I do not like the President.
  5. I do not like his wife.
  6. I have no opinion of their children.
  7. If you don’t listen to the Matt Edmonson Show podcast, I don’t know what you’re doing with your life.
  8. I used to really enjoy the funny lists and videos produced by Buzzfeed, but it seems that the quality of said lists and videos is rapidly declining. I’ve noticed that if they publish a small list of interesting and/or funny things and it’s somewhat popular, they make a video out of said list. That, to me, just makes it seem like they’re running out of original ideas. Which is not good.
  9. Does anyone have any idea why my laptop randomly decides to zoom in and out of pages for me? I mean, I get that it wants to be helpful and all, but that doesn’t help. How do I make it stop?
  10. I find sociopaths fascinating. I’ve been doing a lot of reading up on them lately, and all the information is so interesting. 1 in 25 people is a sociopath. This means that they have no conscience. And that fact, though a little frightening, is just nifty. The idea that a person can function without a conscience is mind boggling. I don’t understand it. But it’s neat.
  11. I don’t mean to say that I promote sociopathy. Please don’t try and rid yourself of your conscience. You need it. Sociopaths are dangerous, destructive people. They don’t care how many people they hurt, nor how badly they hurt them. They will literally kill without a second thought in order to attain their goal. Blood on their hands does not faze them. I just find the psychology behind it interesting. Again, please keep your conscience.
  12. While reading a book on sociopathy, I was presented with a list of sociopathic characteristics, and, reading through them, I panicked because I realized that I could identify with some of these items. I went for two whole days worrying that I was a sociopath.
  13. I’m not a sociopath.
  14. The list used by psychologists to determine sociopathy has about seven items. A person is considered sociopathic when they identify with three or more of the items. I realized that at least three people in my family identify with five out of the seven. And it explains so much.
  15. I’ve been discovering some new music lately, and I’m enjoying it. I’ve always been a fan of classical music, and didn’t think there was anything like it in the modern music world. I was wrong. I’ve stumbled on a slew of instrumental musicians with really, really good music, and it’s not dance music or techno or anything like that. Nothing digital. Proper instrumental music.
  16. I love fall, but recently I’ve been kind of embarrassed to admit it, because of all the “Basic White Girl” stuff that’s been going around, suggesting that only white girls love fall and they take their “basicness” from a 4 to a 10 as soon as leaves begin falling. I don’t even know what “basicness” is, but it sounds bad.
  17. I do not like Pumpkin Spice Lattes.
  18. I do not wear Uggs.
  19. I do not wear yoga pants.
  20. I do not go apple or pumpkin picking.
  21. I am not a basic white girl.
  22. But I do love fall.
  23. I do not feel like doing a damn thing today.
  24. At my job, I went from having one client to having four. Sometimes three in one day. The shifts are short, but it’s really tiring. As soon as I get home, I have to leave again to go back to work, it feels like. And when I am home between shifts, I can’t even enjoy that little break because all I think is, “I have to go back to work in X amount of time.”
  25. I’m going to look up “basicness” because it’s kind of driving me crazy.
  26. Basic (as defined by Urban Dictionary): An adjective used to describe any person, place, activity involving obscenely obvious behavior, dress, action; unsophisticated; transparent motives. So, essentially, being a person who dresses or acts a certain way is a bad thing. Welcome to the world.
  27. I’m still trying to get over the fact that a lot of my favorite TV shows have been canceled over the years.
  28. And since those shows have been canceled, I’ve had a very difficult time trying to get into new TV shows and stick with them.
  29. I’m ashamed to admit it, but I totally bombed Jeopardy the other night. I didn’t get a single question right.
  30. Sometimes I wish I weren’t so sentimental.
  31. I have a Twitter, but rarely do I tweet. And when I tweet, you can expect an almost barrage of tweets. And then silence for another few months.
  32. Christmas is less than three months away!
  33. I’ve already started planning my decorating.
  34. I’ve been on a cleaning rampage since Thursday. Don’t know why. But I’ve cleaned every day since I got home, even if only for an hour. My house looks pretty neat.
  35. Yes, that was a pun. I hope you enjoyed it.
  36. I also brought my dog home with me last night. She stays at my mother’s house (and has for the last two years) because I work away from home for days at a time, and it’s just not feasible (or morally or ethically right) to keep her at home. Plus, she has bad separation anxiety. Like, it’s so bad that a few years ago when she was still living with me, I worked an 8-hour shift, and the next day, I discovered my neighbors had called animal control because she was so loud. It didn’t help that I was working overnights at the time, or that my neighbors are verifiable assholes who refuse to make any sort of exceptions for anyone in the world, regardless of their circumstances, or that my dog-sitter had decided that she didn’t need or want to fulfill her commitment to watch the dog all night. My dog still suffers from separation anxiety, but it’s more manageable when she’s around someone, even if it’s my mother’s dogs. As long as she’s not left totally alone in the house, she’s ok. Not perfect, but ok. I feel terrible for her, and I’ve tried a lot of things to cure her anxiety, but nothing’s worked. And I don’t know what triggered it. She was of age when I got her. OH. I’ve just had a revelation! The woman I got her from! She kept all the puppies in a cardboard box in her dining room! So when I got Hiccup, she was used to being with puppies 24/7! And then suddenly she wasn’t! Holy shit that explains so much.
  37. Maggots scare the shit out of me. (No, Mother, I don’t have maggots. There are no maggots in the house.) They’re totally gross. Not only do they infest food, but they can infest your body. Open wounds. Maggots will find and nest in your open wounds if you don’t take care of them. Like, how would you like to take off a bandage and have a huge family of maggots just chilling in your papercut like it’s no big deal? That’s a level of disgusting that can’t be touched.
  38. I love having a clean, organized fridge. I hate cleaning out my fridge.
  39. I cleaned out my fridge today. Remember how I said I work out of town and am only home two to four days a week? Well, I really don’t buy groceries, because I’m not home a lot to make use of them. It generally spoils before I use it or eat it. Like milk. While cleaning out my fridge today, I discovered a jog of milk from February. It was slightly terrifying. I knew it needed to go, but I didn’t want to put a full jug of expired milk in a trash bag and risk it leaking or exploding everywhere. So I knew it had to be dumped. Bravely, I shoved some Vicks up my nose (to block the smell as best I could) and opened the lid. I never want to dump expired milk out again as long as I live. I’ll spare you the details, but imagine an overwhelming scent of cheese curls and the smelliest sneakers on the planet.
  40. I also discovered about five bottles of coffee creamer in there, too, which are surprisingly still good.
  41. I love peppermint coffee creamer.
  42. I love peppermint everything.
  43. My best friend made me candy cane vodka for Christmas last year. That shit is strong.
  44. I’m going to another Renaissance Faire this month. Well, to the Lancaster one. Which I’ve been to loads of times. But it’ll be the fourth faire this year. I have no problem with this.
  45. Seriously, if you guys ever want to meet up at the RenFaire, I’m totally down.
  46. I have a lot of empty boxes in my house that I’m trying to figure out what to do with. Half of me wants to just throw them away (they’re the boxes that appliances and such came in), and the other half thinks that they might prove useful. I could cleverly disguise them and turn them into cute storage things. Or I could use them for Christmas. You know, take a really small gift and put it in a really big box. That way, it’s funny, and someone else has to deal with the box from then on. Win-win.
  47. I’m taking my Mom to see the farewell tour of Dralion by Cirque du Soleil for her birthday. Granted, the show we’re going to is two months before her birthday, but, hey. Cirque knows no time limit.
  48. If you don’t listen to BBC Radio 1, you need to. The UK has way better music than we do.
  49. If you haven’t heard “Geronimo” by Sheppard, you are wasting your time reading this. That may be the greatest song ever. I love it.
  50. About a week and a half ago, I decided I needed a new game on my iPhone, so I downloaded My Singing Monsters. It’s quite entertaining, I think. You breed little monsters, and they sing. And the more monsters you get, and the more diverse your monster group is, the more complex the music becomes. And you can change the tempo after a certain point, as well, and that’s just funny.
  51. I just realized I still have Vicks in my nose. No wonder I can’t smell anything but menthol.
  52. McDonald’s Monopoly is finally back. I wait all year for this shit, and I don’t know why.
  53. I miss having a falsetto singing voice. When I try to sing falsetto, it’s awful. I have a few really terrible chest colds last year that completely destroyed my voice and I hate it. I’m working on getting back to where I was, but it’s not going so well.
  54. I love orange cookies. You know the ones I mean. So good.
  55. I went to New York yesterday with my mom. No, not the city. Salamanca. No, not the casino. The cigarette outlet. Sale day. Two cartons for like $45.
  56. I know smoking is bad. Bad for me, bad for you, bad for everyone I come in contact with. There are no health benefits. It’s an addiction. It’s expensive, financially and health-wise. I know. But don’t bash it into my brain. Don’t bash it into an smoker’s brain; we all know. And harping on about it isn’t going to make us quit. Just like with any addict, we need to want to quit. We need to make the decision. We need to have the motivation. It’s a personal thing. Outside influences will do little, especially when they’re presented as a barrage of insults, biased facts, shaming, and ignorance. We understand that it bothers you. If you ask nicely, we will move away from you. We may even put it out all together. But the fact that you don’t like it doesn’t mean you can be an asshole about it.
  57. I sincerely hate this culture of offense we’re living in. Everything offends everyone. It’s bullshit. Complete bullshit. I can’t stress how bullshitty it is. It’s ridiculous as well. We expect the world to cater to us and our feelings. If we don’t like something, we go on a rampage about how much it offends us, then we rally an army, then demand that the offensive thing be removed or destroyed. It’s so petty. It’s like living in a world of toddlers. We throw a fit when something isn’t the way we like it. We cry and whine and stomp our feet and throw tantrums to get our way. And simultaneously ruin every good thing there is in the world. Christianity offends you, Hindu, Muslim, Islam, Judaism, Catholicism offends. The way your neighbors parent offends. The amount of soda your sister drinks offends. The number of people who go to McDonald’s (or any other fast food restaurant) offends. Organic offends. GMO offends. Sugar offends. Cuss words offend. Clothing offends. Lack of clothing offends. Gender and sexuality offends. Opinions offend. Reason and logic offends. Ignorance offends. We cry “Offense!” at everything without realizing that we’re complete hypocrites. I HATE IT. How about we show just a tiny bit of tolerance and self-control and MINDING OUR OWN DAMN BUSINESS for once and see how much better the world is for those thirty seconds.
  58. I’m one of those people who longs for full-time pay without full-time hours because I’m lazy and selfish.
  59. I’m willingly becoming more interested in current events. This ISIS thing has me a little bothered. And by a little, I mean a lot.
  60. I kind of wish all social media would disappear sometimes. Because of social media, we’ve become so focused on ourselves. It’s not even the internet, per se, but all the social media sites asking, “What’s on your mind? What are you doing?” They’re all about You. So we start to think the world is not only interested in what we’re doing and thinking, but that they’re privileged to be allowed a glimpse into our lives. Like we’re the legitimate center of the universe. We’re the most important person, so everyone needs to take notice. It’s destroying us. Being able to connect with people around the globe is pretty awesome, I won’t deny that, but we’ve stopped using social media for that purpose. We stopped that a long time ago. Instead of logging on to see how friends and family are doing, we’re logging on to tell the world of our all-important mediocre day-to-day happenings like they’re the chronicles of the messiah. I really don’t give a shit if you got your first, last, or fiftieth latte of the day, and I certainly don’t care how many times your kid shit in the “big boy potty” in the last 48 hours. That sort of stuff is for people who ask. Believe me, having that information is not a privilege, and the world does not need to know. And I hate how many people focus on trying to make their life look more glamorous and interesting than it really is. Like, we know that you’re not that fabulous. Not every day is as phenomenal as you like to try and make us believe. Not everything goes right 100% of the time. And we don’t need or want to hear about how every day is shitty as hell, either. Social media is not your personal diary. And I bet you’re wondering now, “Well, then, what’s it good for?” The answer is nothing anymore. Facebook is not for connecting people anymore. It’s a rose-colored window for you to try and showcase your fictionally movie-like life to people who are doing the same thing and pay no attention to yours whatsoever. It’s an electronic ego, and it does nobody any good. But we’re all pretty attached and addicted to it. We read others’ status updates and think horrible, judgmental thoughts about the people the wrote them and then update our own like we’re Peter Perfect. Stupid.
  61. I’m on the line between “I hate people” and “I like people.”
  62. I also think social media contributes to depression in a huge way. If you’re gullible enough, you can look at those Picture Perfect profiles and compare yourself to them. If you don’t measure up, then you begin thinking that you’re just not good enough, period. You’re not doing enough, you’re not successful enough, you’re not attractive enough, you’re not funny enough, you’re not creative enough, you’re not unique enough. This is also bullshit.
  63. I think it’d be kinda fun to be a life coach.
  64. I still don’t like Oprah.
  65. I’ve been considering amending or completely re-doing a few 50 Favorites lists. I think I will.
  66. I love the smell of my house when my furnace turns on for the first time that year.
  67. I love cold weather.
  68. Every time I consider switching jobs, I start thinking about all the perks of the current job and how I might not get them at the new job. Things like scheduling freedoms and such. At most of my jobs, if I’ve needed a day off, all I had to do was ask my boss and they would immediately give me an answer (usually yes) and find coverage. I didn’t have to turn in a request or bend over backwards in return. And at my current job, I pretty much get to choose my hours, which is nice. If I want more or fewer hours, all I have to do is say so, and it’s done. I get to pick how often I work, how many hours I get, and basically dictate my schedule to my boss. There aren’t a lot of jobs out there that have this perk, and I don’t like the thought of giving that up so easily.
  69. I like all my clients at work, but I hate doing their housework for them. I don’t know why, because most of the jobs are incredibly easy and done within five or ten minutes. But I hate it. I love the clients who just want someone to come spend time with them. My one client tells me not to do anything while I’m there. The first day I was there, I started cleaning the kitchen, and she told me to just sit down and watch a movie with her. That’s it. I love those clients.
  70. I’m always overly ambitious when I’m scheduling, too. I get offered early morning shifts, starting at say 8 a.m., and take them because I think, “Oh, good, I’ll be able to get back into the groove of waking up early, and the earlier I wake up, the more productive I am.” And then I begin working that schedule and absolutely loathe it because I can’t sleep in. And I never seem to be able to fall asleep the night before. If I have to get up at six, I can’t fall sleep before midnight or later. And then the next day I’m so tired I can barely function, so I end up doing a piss poor job at work.
  71. I got a raise last week. And I’m praying it doesn’t push me into a higher tax bracket. Because, obviously, I don’t need more money. Obviously I can live on this wage. Obviously, since I have no debt whatsoever, and necessities are completely free, as is insurance, and bills pay themselves, and the government knows how to spend my money better that I do. Totally reasonable.
  72.  Also, I’m paying into social security, and it’s almost guaranteed that I will never, ever see that money again. Which is fantastic.
  73. I did the math recently, and I won’t be able to retire until I’m in my 70s, which is also totally awesome and feasible.
  74. I also don’t really agree with this raising the pay rate of fast food workers to $15 an hour. I don’t really dig the idea of raising minimum wage so high, either. People don’t seem to realize that if we raise the pay rate, we also raise prices. If $15 is minimum wage, we can expect to pay double digits for a gallon of milk. And I’m not ok with that. But, hey, if someone can figure out a way to raise minimum wage without raising prices, be my guest.
  75. I get to take my garbage out today! It’s kind of sad that I find this to be a luxury anymore. But I only get to take it out every other week, and I worry that I’ll get bugs or rodents or something since it sits so long. I mean, it’s just me here, and I don’t create much garbage, but it’s still scary.
  76. The back of my right knee has been twitching almost nonstop for the last couple days, and it’s annoying and slightly unsettling. I always worry that something small is a precursor or warning about something major.
  77. I’m one of those people who likes the thought of being a morning person better than actually being a morning person.
  78. I’m that way with a lot of things. Like being industrious. Or informed about “globally concerning events.” Or being responsible. And working.
  79. I just took a two-hour break from writing to clean my kitchen.
  80. Also now I’m out of paper towels.
  81. I still have not finished my coffee from this morning.
  82. There is still a bit of Vicks in my nose. I can feel it. Can’t smell it anymore though. Jury’s out on whether or not this is a good thing.
  83. I have two full jars of pickles in my fridge. I don’t eat pickles. I don’t like pickles. I’ve been trying to get rid of these pickles for months. Who wants free pickles? They’re taking up almost an entire half of my fridge shelf. Please, take the pickles.
  84. I actually enjoy organizing my tupperware. I like the ones that you can stack inside of one another with the lids on. Those are my favorite.
  85. I don’t actually own Tupperware. I own Gladware. And lots of empty butter and cookie dough containers.
  86. I don’t like nuts. In any form. Get your mind out of the gutter. I think it’s because when my mom was pregnant with me, she craved and consumed Peanut Buster Parfaits from Dairy Queen on an almost daily basis. I hate everything about nuts. The taste, the texture, the thought of them. And I hate cookies that cleverly disguise nuts as white chocolate or peanut butter chips.
  87. I love peanut butter, ironically enough. Also hate tomatoes, but like tomato soup. Not too big on ketchup, but will use if necessary.
  88. Love potatoes in any form.
  89. My dog has been following me around the house since we got home last night.
  90. She also is not used to uncarpeted flooring. My mom’s house literally has one room that is not carpeted, and that’s the upstairs bathroom, which Hiccup doesn’t enter too often. There are two rooms in my house that are completely carpeted, and two that have huge area rugs. My kitchen has a tile floor, my stairs are wooden, the hall and my bedroom are laminate flooring, and my bathroom is linoleum. It’s hilarious watching her try to maneuver down the stairs without running into the wall at the landing. She’s beginning to learn to descend the stairs very, very slowly. The kitchen is still a problem, though.
  91. Hi, my name’s Cass. I’m 24 and I’m a One Directioner and I’m sort of ashamed. But that shit is catchy.
  92. I love making lists. As you might have guessed.
  93. I used to change my handwriting pretty regularly when I was younger. If I saw someone’s handwriting that I admired, I’d try and copy it until I could perfect it. I trained and retrained my hand so often that my teachers would often question me about my homework and tests because they thought I’d had someone else do it.
  94. I was the reigning spelling bee and vocabulary champion in my class from fifth grade on. I was untouchable.
  95. One of my biggest grade school tormentors loved to pick on me because I was heavy. Just a few days ago, she posted on her Facebook a status that I had to make a conscious effort not to comment on. It began, “I have zero problems with CHUBBY kids…” and it was all I could do from posting, “Really? Because that’s definitely not the impression you gave me for six years without fail. Love, Flubber Thunderthighs.” It really bothered me. I was by no means obese as a second, third, fourth, fifth, sixth, seventh, or eighth grader, but she wasted no time in making sure I knew that I was disgusting and fat and worthless and stupid. Her tormenting bordered abuse, and probably would be considered abuse now, and was focused solely on my weight. So don’t you dare sit there and say you have zero problems with people who are not a size 4, you ignorant, self-righteous bitch.
  96. As terrible as it is to say this, I’m going to anyway. That girl, my tormentor, was a black girl adopted into a privileged white family. That has little to do with this, actually. But she made my life so miserable, and made me feel so terrible all those years, that every time I had any kind of contact with her, I secretly wished that slavery was still legal in the US because maybe then I wouldn’t have had to put up with her shit. It’s awful, I know. But at the time, it was the only thing I wanted. I wanted her to be made to feel the same way she made me feel for all those years; helpless, ashamed, miserable, worthless–all because of the way she looked. Bullied and tormented and bossed around and called horrible names and not be able to do anything but just sit there any take it because no one was willing to stand up to the tormentors or do anything at all to help.
  97. After that, I feel I must reiterate that I am not a racist. I do not wish slavery was still legal. I do not wish that sort of torture on any person.
  98. I don’t want to go to work tomorrow.
  99. I can’t believe it’s 4:30 already. Holy shit.
  100. I’m going to go vacuum, take my trash out, pack, and head over the mountain now. Laters!

Attempting

Posted in Uncategorized on October 3, 2014 by Cass

I’m good at attempting. Like, really good. I’m the best attempter there ever was. I attempt lots of things. The problem is, I often give up.

So I’ve been doing some research that supposed to help us chronic attempters. Most of the information that’s turned up has had a common theme: music. Music has been scientifically found to have all sorts of benefits, mentally and physically. This may be old news to a lot of us, myself included, but I’ve decided this is worth experimenting with. So, the last few weeks, I’ve conducted a few experiments to see how, if at all, music affects my mood and, most importantly, my productivity. I created three playlists. The first was comprised of about fifty songs that were “upbeat” in nature. Fast-paced, happy-sounding, and a good beat. The second was a playlist of sad or slow-tempo songs, mostly the kind about break-ups, broken hearts, and slow, melancholy melodies and beats. The third was a mixture of both of the previous lists. I mixed happy and sad songs and shuffled them. Then, I did a test run.

I began with the Sad List and set out with a two-hour time limit. My goals were to track my mood and productivity throughout the duration of the list, and compare these findings with the data from the remaining two lists. My main task was cleaning; I wanted to see how far I’d get and how thorough I was while listening to each list. Did I clean the entire room to perfection or did I get halfway through it and do a decent enough job that I could masquerade it as sufficiently clean?

My findings were, strangely, completely predictable. During the two-hour Sad List, my mood was pretty apathetic, and my productivity was low. After listening to the entire playlist, I reviewed my work and found that I’d done what you’d expect: I cleaned the major, visible areas, meaning I cleared out the garbage, rearranged some things so they didn’t look like the clutter that they were, vacuumed, did a little bit of dusting, and called it clean. I took four ten-minute breaks, and one of those turned into a twenty-minute break because I just didn’t want to get up and resume.

The Happy List was also completely predictable. My mood was pretty good (as good as it can be while cleaning) and I cleaned thoroughly, and a lot quicker than I had during the Sad List, which was something I didn’t expect. I had read that the tempo of a song has an effect on your heartbeat (your heartbeat will synchronize with the beat of a song) and in turn your body will be motivated to move in time with the beat, but I didn’t really buy that last part. I believed that your heartbeat would step in time, but not your body. It was a pleasant surprise to find out it was true. I’d finished my task about ten minutes before the two-hour playlist was over, and I had done a completely thorough job. I took one ten minute break instead of almost an hour’s worth collectively, and had no problem getting back up and continuing on.

The Mixed List had a mixed result. I compiled the list strategically, placing the happy songs intermittently throughout the sad ones, so that I didn’t have a substantial amount of one genre in one spot. I didn’t want to have my body constantly trying to readjust from one extreme to the other. I didn’t want to move to the beat of ten sad songs then have to suddenly change gears into a slew of happy ones; that’s what I’ve been doing all these years, and my productivity has been low, low, low. So, I tried to go every other: sad, happy, sad, happy, et cetera. After the list was over, I reviewed, and found that my mood and productivity was kinda wonky. My mood was favoring apathetic, and my productivity was decent, but not at its best. I noticed that if a happy song came on that I really liked, I moved quicker and was more thorough, and that lasted for the next few songs, regardless of whether they were happy or sad. The same thing happened if it was a sad song that I liked. I took a couple breaks, but, for some reason, didn’t bother to time them.

All in all, happy songs do make me more productive. And since then, I’ve created a highly effective playlist for when I have things to do. And I will post it for you so that maybe you can get stuff done, too. And no, I have no shame in listening to some of the songs on here. They make me work. So what if they’re boy bands.

93 Songs For Highly Productive People

  1. Anberlin-Cadence
  2. Ariana Grande-Break Free
  3. Blue October-Into The Ocean
  4. Chris Brown-Look At Me Now
  5. Clean Bandit-Rather Be
  6. Cole Porter-You’re The Top
  7. Daniel Bedingfield-Girlfriend
  8. David Bisbal-Ave Maria
  9. David Bisal-Llorare las Penas
  10. David Geutta-I Can Only Imagine
  11. Dead of Alive-You Spin Me Right Round
  12. Deaf Havana-Mildred
  13. Default-Wasting My Time
  14. Dev-Dancing In The Dark
  15. Elbow-My Sad Captains
  16. Elbow-One Day Like This
  17. Ellie Goulding-Burn
  18. Flo Rida-Low
  19. The Fratellis-Flathead
  20. George Ezra-Blame It On Me
  21. Glass Tiger-Don’t Forget Me When I’m Gone
  22. Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglova-Falling Slowly
  23. Go West-King of Wishful Thinking
  24. Gotye-I Feel Better
  25. Gotye-In Your Light
  26. Gotye-Save Me
  27. Haim-The Wire
  28. Henry Krinkle-Stay
  29. Ingrid Michaelson-Girls Chase Boys
  30. Jake Bugg-Two Fingers
  31. Jason Derulo-Riding Solo
  32. Jermaine Stewart-We Don’t Have To Take Our Clothes Off
  33. Jesse McCartney-She’s No You
  34. Jessie J-Domino
  35. Jessie J, Ariana Grande, Nicki Minaj-Bang Bang
  36. Justin Timberlake-Rock Your Body
  37. Justin Timberlake-Take Back The Night
  38. Keane-Is It Any Wonder?
  39. The Killers-Mr. Brightside
  40. The Knack-My Sharona
  41. Kwabs-Walk
  42. Labrinth-Let It Be
  43. Le Youth-Dance With Me
  44. Lit-My Own Worst Enemy
  45. Lita Ford-Kiss Me Deadly
  46. Mat Kearney-Fire and Rain
  47. Michael Dulin-Clair de Lune
  48. Mr. Mister-Kyrie
  49. Next-Too Close
  50. One Direction-Best Song Ever
  51. 1D-Diana
  52. 1D-Kiss You
  53. 1D-Little Things
  54. 1D-Over Again
  55. 1D-You and I
  56. Paolo Nutini-Pencil Full of Lead
  57. Paul Cardall-Gracie’s Theme
  58. Paul Carrack-Don’t Shed A Tear
  59. Paul Simon-You Can Call Me Al
  60. Penguin Cafe Orchestra-Music For A Found Harmonium
  61. Pentatonix-Daft Punk
  62. The Piano Guys-Beethoven’s 5 Secrets
  63. The Piano Guys-The Cello Song
  64. Pitbull-Mr. Worldwide
  65. Give Me Everything
  66. Rain Over Me
  67. Hey Baby
  68. Pause
  69. Come N Go
  70. Shake Senora
  71. International Love
  72. Castle Made of Sound
  73. Took My Love
  74. Where Do We Go
  75. Shake Senora Remix
  76. Something For The DJs
  77. Mr. Right Now
  78. Oye Baby
  79. My Kinda Girl
  80. Priestbird-Guest Room
  81. Rixton-Me And My Broken Heart
  82. Robbie Williams-DeLovely
  83. Robbie Williams-Candy
  84. Rudimental-Feel The Love
  85. Sam Smith and Disclosure-Latch
  86. Sam Tsui-Love The Way You Lie/Dynamite
  87. The Section Quartet-Such Great Heights
  88. Sigur Ros-Glosoli
  89. Stafraenn Hakon-Bright
  90. Takenobu-Thursday
  91. The Vamps-Oh Cecilia
  92. The Vitamin String Quartet-Hoppipolla
  93. 5 Seconds of Summer-She Looks So Perfect

That’s six hours of music for your productive pleasure. Happy Tasking!

Diva Status

Posted in Uncategorized on September 18, 2014 by Cass

No, I have not attained this coveted position. Though I’m not sure I even covet it. ANYWAY.

I read a rather scathing article within the last few days about singer Ariana Grande and her supposed narcissistic, diva-esque attitude in recent years. In the article, it listed all the allegations of the singer’s behavior, most of which are very negative. It included her split from Nickelodeon’s Sam & Cat due to her inability to be friendly with her co-starts, refusing to sign autographs or associate with fans in any way, being blatantly rude to VIP passholders, and being the most “stuck up, disrespectful person” Alexander DeLeon has ever met in the industry.

The article went into detail about a meeting between Grande and two fans. A father had written a blog post about his two daughters having won a contest to meet the singer after one of her shows. The contest required the entrants to submit a piece of art of the singer, and whoever won, would be arranged a meet and greet with Grande where they could present her with their winning piece. Well, when the time came, the father wrote:

After the bogus interview, Ariana was set to appear. First, she did an on-camera interview. We don’t know what it was about, but I’m wondering if she also faked that the meeting had already taken place.  She then approached her fans without a smile – just an icy look as she toyed with her hair.  She was surrounded by 8 to 10 assistants.  Ariana stood by, with a blank stare, as the rules came fast and furiously from a staffer:

“You are not to present Ariana with any type of gift or anything. Give them to security and they will get them to her. You can take a selfie with her, but nothing else.”

Remember, these are not kids who interrupted Ariana during dinner at a restaurant, they are pre-screened contest winners who poured their hearts into their winning entries. The 16 year old boy had recorded a CD of beautiful violin cover versions of Ariana songs. It won the contest for him, and he wanted to present it to her.

It was taken away by security.

Ariana Grande, the superstar, then walked toward her three contest-winning fans.

She spent perhaps 15 seconds with each of them. That is not an exaggeration. They took an approved photo with her and that was it. No small talk. No banter. No “I can pretend I care a slight bit for you because you support me, you tweeted about me and my projects thousands of times, you buy my music, and you traveled so far, while paying for your own taxis, three days of meals, new outfits to meet me in, and federal and state taxes on this prize. Let me hear the one sentence you’ve always dreamed about telling me.”

Nothing. That was it. Don’t be fooled by the sweet smile in the photos below.  Ariana gave that grin for each picture, but then it was gone again. She never bothered to even ask anyone their name. She didn’t inquire as to who the contest winners were, as opposed to their guests, or what they created to win the right to meet her. Shocked by all this, Jen, whom Ari had been so kind to in 2011, walked up and said “Ari, here’s a photo we took together in Vegas at the Titanic…”

Ms. Grande glanced at the photo on Jen’s phone and said, “Let’s redo that picture.” She said nothing else, so Jen retook the photo. No peace sign from Ari this time.  Then Jen took out one of the drawings that won the contest for her.  Kelly snapped a photo of her smiling little sister giving Ariana the drawing.

“Delete those pictures, please” was all Ariana said.

“Can I just keep the one of my sister showing you the drawing?” asked Kel.

Ariana turned to her security and ordered, “Make sure she deleted those.”

Then, Ariana Grande walked away from her prize-winning fans without even saying goodbye.

Not too encouraging. That, to me, proved that she is every bit as terrible as anyone claims. The fact that you can’t take five minutes out of your day to speak with and thank fans shows just how shallow you really are. As terrible as I find that, and believable as I find that, I wasn’t so sure about one of the other accusations: that Grande issued a long list of demands to a photographer, one of which that she was only to be shot from the left side. I thought to myself, “Now that seems a little far-fetched, even for the biggest diva on the planet.” So, in the name of research, I looked up as many of her music videos as I could find and watched them all. And, as luck would have it, 99% of her shots are from the left side. And I noticed in a few videos that it looked like she had been shot from the right, but by paying closer attention, I discovered that those specific shots had just been flipped to make it look like it was from the right side. Nearly every time the camera is on her, her head is turned. She makes such a point of this that it looks awkward. Even when the camera is facing her squarely, she has her head turned, ever-so-slightly, and it makes it look kind of unnatural. I took some snapshots of her in three different videos.

These are stills from the “Problem” video. Always from the left.1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

These stills are from the video for “The Way.” See how the bracelet miraculously switches arms?11 12 13 14 15
And these are from “Popular” by Mika. Awkward left-tilted head.16 17 18 19

So, in summary, I believe that all these allegations against Grande are true. And obviously I’m not the only one. For a 21-year-old in the music industry, she’s clueless. And someone on Tumblr summed her talent up perfectly. I can’t remember the exact wording, or who posted it, but it was something like this: Ariana Grande reminds me of the girl at school whose voice really isn’t that great, but she’s always asked to sing the National Anthem at sporting events.

I’m Frustrated

Posted in Uncategorized on September 18, 2014 by Cass

It seems that any and all artistic talents and creativity that I once had have left me, and it is frustrating beyond belief. I’m at a standstill on all of my projects. I’m still dealing with this damned writer’s block, and now, my hands just do not want to draw. I can’t get beyond a few lines or circles before I erase the whole damn thing. This is so unbelievably frustrating that it’s hard to convey to you the actual magnitude of my disappointment. Just a month or so ago, I was drawing for whole days without stopping, and was satisfied with what I was producing. Now, I can’t make it past a half-assed outline before calling it quits. And my writing was coming back, I could sit and pound out a chapter or two without a problem. Now, I’m just staring at a blank page for an hour or so until I can’t take it anymore and move on to wasting my time on something else.

I hate this. And I don’t know what is causing it. And since I don’t know what’s causing it, I can’t fix it. I’ve tried everything. Prompts for both writing and drawing, practicing, trying to finish a piece that I left unfinished, researching, looking for inspiration, walking away and coming back to whatever I was trying to work on. Nothing has worked. And I don’t know why. And I hate it.

I’m hoping beyond hope that this is not permanent. I can’t imagine going the rest of my life not doing those two things. I grew up with such a passion for them, and now, all at once, I can’t do either of them. It’s not that I don’t want to do them. but my interest in both seems to have disappeared entirely. I just want to expel an offensive myriad of cuss words to get all this frustration out, but my neighbors would surely have me arrested, kind people that they are.

I don’t know what to do. I don’t know how to get my spark back. Help.

Dealing With People Who Are Never Satisfied

Posted in Uncategorized on September 12, 2014 by Cass

This is something I have great difficulty doing. I don’t deal well with people who are never happy. They could have all that their heart desires and still find something to complain about. I have several of these people in my life, most not by choice, and their constant bitching makes me crazy. There is always something wrong, always something to bitch about, no matter how big or small. One of these people was a co-worker. It didn’t matter how above and beyond I went in my duties, she always found something to complain about. And the thing I’ve noticed about this sort of person is that they never have the balls to say something to the person that’s causing them all this “trauma.” They’re all passive aggressive. The co-worker? Never had the balls to walk up to me and complain about my work to my face. Not once. She talked to everyone else about it, but not me.

Several of these people clutter up my newsfeed several times a day. Men and women both. I have to fight the urge to comment, “Shut the fuck up; your life is not as bad as you like to say it is,” on almost every single post of theirs.

One of these people has this weird fixation on marriage. Namely the fact that he is not, and wants to be so badly. He is forever posting about how much he wants to have a relationship and get married and how much it frustrates him that this is not happening for him, how angry he is that it is not happening, and how hard it is for him that it is not happening. For example, tonight he posted this: I’m just going to stay single for the rest of my life, I just wish I were good at it…can’t do right in a relationship, can’t be content single…so what do I do? Feelings are dumb.

This status of course was commented on several times, with numerous people offering uplifting advice to him. Like, “Trust in God, He knows who that perfect someone is for you,” and, “What you’re doing is way better than settling…I won’t say the right person will come along, but keep your mind open and your heart guarded in case she does,” and, “Everyone’s been through this at one point or another…be patient.” The best response was, “Maybe God wants you to not put so much energy into this subject? Don’t give up on God’s wisdom in this situation. He may very well have something planned for you but just wants you to let Him worry about it. Giving up almost sounds like you’re giving up on God’s wisdom. We don’t live in His timeframe, and yeah, that can be frustrating, but His way is always best.” That response fits in best with how this particular person’s brain works. He’s a preachy Christian, so you would think that a God-based answer or explanation would ease his mind. But no. His response was this: Well then why can’t I stop caring about it? People tell me not to focus on it, think about it, or put too much energy into it…ever think that perhaps I spend every day attempting not to focus on it? That I keep busy with work, ministry, hobbies, and people so that I don’t dwell on it! It’s easy to say a bunch of easy sounding stuff, but try my brain for a day. It doesn’t shut up, and my heart continues to be an irritable nuisance as well as always feeling sad about the matter…well I’m tired of feeling and caring about it. I just want to do what I’m supposed to and preach the gospel but it’s kinda hard with a dumb desire that never goes away.

If that doesn’t sum up this kid’s personality, then I don’t know what does. He’s so incredibly dramatic and throws a disgusting amount of pity parties cleverly disguised as whimsically depressing updates. He just wants the attention he believes he deserves. The woman’s rebuttal to his response was perfect.

“Actually, I know exactly what you’re talking about. And no, it’s not ‘easy to say easy things,’ but they’re true things. I’ve been where you are and I remember how it felt, clearly. But I think it’s a good [thing] to do that, to focus on ministry and the gospel. Things like that can help distract you and although it won’t [work] all the time, it may help you gain patience. We’re growing constantly in spirit. God usually doesn’t want us to be alone but sometimes it takes a while to have that person brought to you. Yeah some people find them at 18, others at 30 or more. I just don’t think it’s something you should give up on but do hand it over to God.”

Interestingly enough, he didn’t reply to her, though he replied to several commenters after her. Just a classic example of this kid’s general behavior: ignore what you don’t want or like to hear or see. He’s selective of the information he takes in. If he doesn’t like it, he ignores it, pretends it doesn’t even exist. If it doesn’t jive with his particular outlook, it’s not there. He goes on so much about how his relationships have never worked out, and always, always, always blames the woman. It’s always her fault. In this particular comment section, he said that women just aren’t able to “put up with him for extended periods of time.” Because his personality is too much for them; he is just too great, too hot to be handled. But, speaking as a woman, in all reality, it’s not the womens’ fault. We’re not the problem when it comes to Relationships With Kid. Kid is the problem. His expectations, in general, are astronomically high. Too high to be met by any mere mortal. He’s also extremely possessive. Like, to the point where it can be misconstrued as abuse. Though it may not be misconstrued. It may be very well just that: abuse. And he does not accept responsibility for anything that goes wrong, as we’ve seen. There’s always another party at fault. He’s in a bad mood? It’s so-and-so’s fault. Or his “depression’s” fault. In short, Kid is a two-year-old in a twenty-six-year-old’s body. When things don’t go his way, he throws a tantrum and wants everyone to feel bad for him. And as long as things are going his way, he is in a good mood, but still finds things to complain about. I’ve been friends with Kid for about two years, and in those two years, I’ve noticed hundreds, if not thousands, of things about his personality that are damn near impossible to be around for any amount of time. His moods, his possessiveness, his unattainable expectations and standards for the common human being, his preachy nature, his arrogance, his vanity, his “holier than thou” attitude, his need to always be right, smarter, and better in general, his pseudo-intellectualism, his argumentative compulsion (he will argue literally any point you make), his need for attention and praise for simply existing, his constant fake brooding, his outward persona that is drastically different from who he actually is. The list goes on and on. He’s the kind of person who claims to hate himself, yet talks for hours on end about how attractive he is. He wants to be seen as a brooding, artistic, intellectual, and wants women to flock to him based on his appearance first, and his personality second. But he’s really just a selfish, whiny, flake who can’t keep a woman because she gets fed up with his toddler mindset. It’s very simple, really. He is his own problem, not the women. Plus, his ideal woman does not exist. She just doesn’t. I kind of hope I’m there on the day he figures that out, just to see the genuine disappointment on his face while his entire facade comes crumbling down around him.

Kid has a lot of shit he needs to figure out before he finds himself a woman. And even when he does work it all out, that woman is going to need to have the patience of Job to be able to deal with him for the rest of her life. But, knowing Kid, I don’t have high hopes for him actually being able to work out all this shit. Ever. See, he’s into instant gratification, and his propensity for impatience pretty much relegates him to the annals of singledom for the rest of his life. No woman in her right mind would consciously choose to spend the rest of her life with him as he is now. He’s guaranteed a life of being single if he doesn’t change.

But, I have this nagging feeling that, even if he does manage to work his shit out, and he does meet and marry the woman of his dreams, it won’t be long before he’s back on the Bitch Horse complaining about the sagging of her boobs.

I Am Not Mourning The Loss of Joan Rivers

Posted in Uncategorized on September 5, 2014 by Cass

Yesterday the world received the news that comedienne Joan Rivers had passed away after complications during throat surgery. Memorials and condolences littered the internet as thousands mourned the loss of the Queen of Mean. Joan Rivers had a career that spanned six decades, beginning in 1959 when she starred in a play called Driftwood that ran for six weeks. Since that time, she’s starred in dozens upon dozens of talk shows including Late Night, Conan, The Late Show, and David Letterman. She’s renowned for her brash sense of humor and sophisticated fashion sense.

Ms. Rivers had many fans throughout her years. People enjoyed her particular sense of humor, and found truth and camaraderie in her voice. She was loud, she was proud, and she was rude.

Unbelievably rude.

I do not mourn Joan Rivers. I am not saddened by the loss of her humor. While she was alive, I had the opportunity to sample her work, listen to her voice, and be disgusted, ashamed, and appalled by her sense of humor. She was a woman who took great pleasure in insulting people. In a world that rallies so hard against bullying, we lifted the biggest bully up and praised her for her “honesty.”

Joan Rivers has been lauded a “feminist icon” in the hours since her death. But she wasn’t. In reality, Joan Rivers was the exact opposite. She shamed women as much as, or more so, than men. She was the first one to comment on how “hot or not” a woman was, poke fun at her flaws, criticize her, dehumanize her, belittle her. She pinpointed everything wrong with womens’ appearances, and she was applauded for it. But the sad part is she didn’t just do it to women; she did it everyone. The first thing Joan seemed to notice was how heavy a person was. The second was their outfit and how fat it made a person look. After pointing out these two things, she proceeded to make a mockery of whoever stood in front of her. And no one told her to stop.

Joan was a fat-shamer, a body-shamer, a fashion-shamer; she was an all-around people-shamer. She was the biggest bully we’ve seen in recent history, and she was praised for being just that. Applauded because “she had the courage to say what everyone else was thinking.” But I don’t think it was courage. I think it was insecurity. You can’t tell me the woman who’s had countless cosmetic surgeries over the years is comfortable in her own skin. She called it maintenance, I call it a severe lack of self confidence. I believe Joan was deflecting. She pointed out everyone else’s flaws so that no one recognized hers. She was able to fool everyone into thinking she was being funny instead of outright nasty. She is the epitome of a bully. Or was. 

I’m sure she touched many people’s lives. It’s just too bad that a lot of those people were touched in the wrong way.

My condolences go out to the family and friends of Joan, those who loved her for the person she was off-camera, for the person who wasn’t a bully. I am sorry for your loss.

Maybe A 100 Things…Thing…Maybe Not

Posted in 100 Things Thing on August 8, 2014 by Cass

I’ve written a slew of posts on here that I kicked into the Draft Bucket because I have this terrible, nasty, no good habit of ignorantly ending them with non sequitors and that’s apparently frowned upon. So I decided to do a 100 Things Thing because I literally have no other ideas and have yet to come up with non-non-sequitor endings to those drafts. So here we go.

  1. My coffee addiction is raging out of control.
  2. I’m obsessed with anything lemon, except lemons. Can’t eat them. But lemon candy, lemonade, lemon-scented trash bags, candles, air fresheners, lotions, body washes, shampoos, LOAD ME UP.
  3. I finally joined the iPhone world last month. After having a Nokia, two LG flip phones, a Razr, three Blackberrys (which I adored), and two Android-powered phones (which I was less than thrilled with), my iPhone is phenomenal by comparison. But I miss having an insertable memory card that I could load up with 1,000 songs and photos. This limited memory shit is for the birds, and I’m too poor to afford paying an extra hundred bucks for 2 more MBs.
  4. After four years, I think I’m finally in need of a new laptop. The keys on this one are beginning to not work, it overheats within an hour and a half if I don’t have it plugged into the fan deck, the battery literally fall outs if I pick it up, and only one USB port works. I think it might be time.
  5. While shopping for a new laptop, I’ve hit the first snag: apparently none of the new ones come with Microsoft Word installed in them. This is a problem for me. Word is my go-to document software. And I’m not paying $140 for a year’s subscription; to me, that is ludicrous. Plus, I’m incredibly particular when it comes to what I want in a laptop. I like the big ones–big screen, big keyboard. I need at least three USB ports at any given time. I need to be able to burn DVDs and CDs. I NEED WORD.
  6. I am willfully ignorant of global and local political happenings. It is my choice. I do not care what you have to say about it. You will not change my mind.
  7. Today I am going to attempt to change the belt in my brand new vacuum that I broke the second time I used it.
  8. I’m thinking about painting my front door.
  9. I consider myself somewhat of a grammar freak. Typos bother me. Lack of punctuation is the worst. But I think I’ve discovered something worse than lack of punctuation: over-punctuation. I have a friend who’s going to be a junior in college. She’s majoring in English lit and journalism I believe. She is so freaking liberal with commas that it’s unreal. It drives me crazy. Reading her status updates makes me cringe. She literally adds a comma in every single description regardless of whether or not it’s needed or supposed to be there. For example, where you and I would write, “She’s actually a very good public speaker despite her stutter,” this friend would write, “She’s, actually, a very good public speaker, despite, her stutter.” And this gem that I just saw today, “…what, truly, matters, is the sentiment behind…” instead of, “…what truly matters is the sentiment…” Yes, she’s one of those who inserts a comma to indicate a pause in writing. And she’s an English major. Get out.
  10. Sam Smith is directly from Heaven.
  11. My father is getting married this weekend and I’m so not a fan. He’s marrying the woman he cheated on my mother with, and she is one of the most annoying people on the planet. She’s loud, obnoxious, rude, crass, and ew. She’s just an ugly, unattractive person. And her face is not pretty, either.
  12. I’m drinking coffee right now.
  13. I own no fewer than four tiaras.
  14. I’m going to the Pennsylvania Renaissance Faire for my birthday because I’m in love with that place and I like dressing up like nobility and they have the best pretzels ever and pirates and King Henry and Queen Catherine and knights and jousting and yes you are invited.
  15. Still totally in love with Benedict Cumberbatch. I’ll let you know when the wedding is.
  16. Still don’t know what we’re going to name our children. Nothing goes with Cumberbatch. Except Benedict.
  17. I love the name Phillippa.
  18. I also love the name Phillip. So there.
  19. I promised my best friend that I would name my son Beau Regard. Not Beauregard. First name Beau, middle name Regard. Beau Regard Cumberbatch. Hey. That actually fits pretty well. BOOM.
  20. I will be the last person to die in my lifetime.
  21. As of last count, I have 32 freckles on my face.
  22. I have one tattoo, and I’d like to get more. Problem is, I can’t decide what I want, or where to put it.
  23. I don’t like tattoos on faces, or on the fronts of necks. I think they’re tacky and don’t look right. It’s painful for me to look at Travis Barker.
  24. I would never, ever get tattooed all over my body. 
  25. I like dainty things. And miniature things. CUTE.
  26. I think we’re planning on going to at least three RenFaires this year. And I’m excited.
  27. I think my niece has finally broken my anti-baby mentality. She’s a peach.livi
  28. I generally refer to any of my man crushes as “My Husband.”
  29. I love amusement parks.
  30. I also enjoy the county fair. Everyone in this community bitches endlessly about it, yet they’re always there. They say it’s a waste of time, it’s too expensive, it’s nothing but a hick-fest, the only people that go are white trash, trailer park dwelling, back road hicks, rednecks, and basically the scum of the earth, but an hour after they’re done complaining about it, they pay the $8 admission fee and walk around for three hours. That annoys me. I enjoy going to the fair. True, it’s not a high-quality, large-scale event, but it’s the biggest thing that happens in this town all year. I enjoy walking around and looking at the displays in the Expo buildings and seeing the farm animals presented by local farmers and 4H members and seeing the art displays, and there’s always good food, and I always end up running into people I haven’t seen in a long time. I’ve never had a bad time at the fair.
  31. I want Robbie Williams to come to my hometown and give a private concert for my friends, family, and me. We love Robbie.
  32. I’m on QuizUp if anyone cares and wants to friend me.Just search for Cass. I’ll be there.
  33. I love cleaning products. Cleaning products and office supplies are the two things I’m guaranteed to come home with from any shopping excursion. If I need milk, I get milk and Mr. Clean and pens.
  34. I have no desire to travel anywhere tropical because HOT AND MUGGY AND NO.
  35. I think next year I’m going to enter a piece of art into the competition at the fair.
  36. I am terrible at body proportions when I’m drawing. Faces I’m good with. But when it comes to anything below the head, forget it. My torsos usually turn out okay, but then the legs always end up way too short and it’s just a mess. Ugh.
  37. I love pearls.
  38. I will not be wearing pearls at my wedding. Pearls are bad luck. They represent tears. NO TEARS.
  39. I just found out a few days ago that my great-grandmother and her sister were born exactly 12 years apart. To the day. I think it’s neat.
  40. My grandmother and I were born 49 years apart, to the day. NEAT.
  41. I recently discovered, too, that I am still the only Cassandra in my family. A gentlemen found me online and corrected a mistake I had made while researching my ancestry and said that the Cassandra Greer I had found was actually not related to me at all. So there goes that branch.
  42. The ceiling in my living room is falling down. Literally. And it’s terrifying. I live in constant fear that I’ll come downstairs in the morning and my whole ceiling will be on the floor.
  43. I own four guitars.
  44. I had planned on being productive today. And I was for about an hour this morning. I ran to Family Dollar for a few things, grabbed some coffee and Dunkin, then went to the Dollar Tree for a few more things, and I came home and cleaned the kitchen because I bought a new foaming bleach cleaner and it’s exciting.
  45. One big downside of my job is that I’m only home every other weekend, so I’m not able to take the trash out every week. But since it’s only me, I don’t have a lot of trash. But I hate not being able to take the trash out, because I’m afraid of bugs.
  46. I have a huge dry erase board sitting on my dining room floor because I don’t have anywhere to put it. It’s been here since June. It was a Christmas gift. I had used it for my writing class, but when the gallery was sold, I brought it home and haven’t used it since.
  47. You know how when you walk into someone else’s home, it has a distinctive smell? And when you leave there and go back to your home, you realize that yours has a smell, too, but you just don’t notice it often because you’re used to it? And now there’s that commercial talking about the cat lady who has gone “nose-blind” to the smell of her home? Yeah. I worry that my house smells like Cat Lady’s and I just can’t smell it. This is why I love air fresheners.
  48. I like to clean when I’m pissed.
  49. I’ve always kind of wanted to spend a night with no electricity, and only use candles for light, just to see how well it works. You know how in movies, one single candle gives off that bright light and people can read and write by it. I know that’s not going to happen with one candle, but I’d like to just have a few lit around the house and see if I can still see and navigate safely.
  50. I used to be very staunchly Pro-Life and Anti-Abortion. I’m still very much Pro-Life, but not so much anti-abortion. I don’t condone it, and I will never encourage someone to get an abortion, and I don’t consider it an option for myself or anyone else, but I’m more educated about it all now, and I understand and empathize with the women who have chosen it. I also understand that there are literal medical emergencies that necessitate abortion. I know a woman who had to terminate to save her life. She was pregnant with twins. One of the twins had died, and the other was in danger as well. Problem was, if they had delivered the remaining twin, he would have died. And if they let her try and carry to term, both she and the baby would have died before her due date. So she and her husband made the heavy decision to terminate the pregnancy before things got worse. She lives with that pain every day, and will continue to for the rest of her life. But I understand her decision, and I wouldn’t ever criticize her for it. 16-year-old me would have. I viewed abortion as a selfish, monstrous, willful act of murder. My thinking at the time was that the only reason women were getting abortions is because they didn’t want to pay the consequences of their actions. If you’re responsible enough to be having unprotected sex, you’re responsible enough to get pregnant and take care of that baby. Abortion was just a way to avoid responsibility. I saw it as selfish, lazy, and unjustified murder. I didn’t even make exceptions for medically necessary abortions. But then I realized that not every woman is in the same situation when she chooses abortion. A bevy of circumstances were brought to my attention, and, while they did not justify the abortion itself, they helped to justify the women’s decisions. Still, I will never encourage abortion. But I will be understanding with the women who have chosen it. I will never be able to go through what they went through, to hear their thoughts or feel their emotions as they made that decision, and so I cannot righteously condemn them for any of it. But I can be a shoulder to lean on when they need it.
  51. i find it a little funny that the Catholic Church is the biggest, most powerful church in the free world, and yet, if you walk up to any Catholic and ask them to name any non-family member they go to church with on Sundays, they won’t be able to give you an answer longer than maybe two names. And those names won’t necessarily be people they’re friends with, but just people that they know go to that church. In my entire career as a Catholic, I can’t remember a single friendship that was formed within the church on Sunday mornings. I knew of people who went there, and knew my classmates and their families went there, but I never went to church and found a friend. There is little fellowship in Catholic churches anymore. There is only one time in Mass that you have any interaction with your fellow attendees, and it’s very brief. You shake their hand, say, “Peace be with you,” and that’s it. No conversation, no introduction, just a brief handshake, a few muttered words, and you go back into your own bubble. Chances are you will never know the name of the person whose hand you shook. And yet we’re all supposed to be brothers and sisters and foster each other’s faith.
  52. I always hated going to Mass. Now sometimes I go on my own just because.
  53. My grandfather was in the seminary for a short time. Just imagine, had he stayed there, you would not be reading this right now.
  54. I love stories that involve a person being taken back in time. Like Outlander. I find it fascinating, and it’s always kind of been one of my dreams to suddenly wake up in another time and see if it’s really like how we imagine or are told. I know it’s not possible, but it’d be the coolest thing ever. But I’d be terrified of not being able to come back to the present time.
  55. When I’m in need of inspiration for writing, I like to walk through cemeteries and look at the really old headstones. Family plots are my favorite. There’s a cemetery where my mother lives that is full of family plots from the seventeen- and eighteen hundreds. There’s one I came across a few years ago with Mother and Father at the top, then all their children below. They lost three of their eight children in infancy. One died the day it was born, another died a few weeks after it was born, and the last one was just shy of a year. Then another died when it was a toddler. I think only one survived to adulthood. I like to imagine what they were like, what sort of lives they lived and so on. Sometimes just a name can spur a whole plot line.
  56. I believe in ghosts. I have two in my home. One is Hank and the other is Lucinda. I’ve seen them both.
  57. My best friend won’t go to cemeteries with me anymore. We went a few years ago, and I found a really, really old family plot that had a wrought-iron fence around it. The names were worn down, so I leaned over the fence to try and see them better, and out of nowhere, a rock flew out of thin air and hit me on the head. I hauled ass to the car and she followed in a panic. I told her what happened when we got into the car and she said, “You’re not allowed to ever go back to any cemeteries ever again, and I sure as hell am not going with you! Didn’t I tell you not to touch anything? NO TOUCHING THINGS.” 
  58. History is my favorite. But I prefer European history to American. American history to me is boring. We don’t have a long history, so not a ton of interesting things have happened.
  59. i was very fortunate to have not experienced the loss of a grandparent until I was in my twenties. And I hope my remaining grandparents hold out until I’m like 60.
  60. I still like to sleep over at my grandparents’ houses.
  61. I imagine what it will be like to someday be a grandparent.
  62. I also sit and wonder what my own children will look like. It’ll be so weird to have a tiny human running around that looks like me.
  63. I also used to wonder, “If my sister and I had been identical twins, which one of us would we look like?”
  64. I wanted, for a short time, to be a mortician.
  65. Some might say I have a weak stomach. I can handle blood and guts. I cannot handle vomit, feces, or going upside down on an amusement park ride.
  66. I have a Know-It-All neighbor who once argued with me that when you get your tonsils removed, you no longer have a gag reflex. I had my tonsils removed when I was two. I threw up on her after gagging.
  67. I have always secretly envied my sister’s ability to cry at will. She can force sobs better than any person I have ever met. I can’t even cry when I break a bone.
  68. I can’t remember ever crying from an injury in the last fifteen years, actually.
  69. I fear Mall Santas.
  70. My birthday is in sixteen days.
  71. I think I have more ink pens than I do clothes and shoes combined.
  72. I love calligraphy.
  73. I also love graphology, otherwise known as handwriting analysis. It’s fascinating to me just how accurate it is.
  74. I find it fascinating just how accurate a lot of things are, regarding how they can determine personality traits, and think it’s pretty freaking neat that they determine traits, period. Like, who thought, “I bet Sybil’s handwriting is indicative of her mental instability,” and then decided what letter characteristics suggested different personality traits? How does one make that connection? Fascinating.
  75. I wake up with a headache at least once a week.
  76. I’m allergic to aspirin and penicillin.
  77. I hate coconut. Hate it. The texture is awful, the taste is not that great. But I love things that smell like coconut.
  78. I love anything having to do with trivia. Quizzes, games, books. Gimme.
  79. Even though I know Munchos are the most artificial food on the planet, I. LOVE. THEM.
  80. I adore pocket watches.
  81. At the Fling this year, I bought a loaf of Irish brown bread, and ate almost the whole thing by myself within an hour.
  82. I have not had my coffee yet this morning, and I’m getting a headache because of it.
  83. At first, I didn’t believe all the posts claiming that Rapunzel and Flynn were in the beginning of Frozen. I thought someone had cleverly superimposed their image on the still frame. And then I watched it again and saw that they’re actually in there and felt kinda dumb.
  84. I’ve had difficulty remembering my age this year for some reason. I keep thinking I’m 24 going on 25. And then I remember that I’m still only 23. And then I feel kinda dumb.
  85. You know those plastic, stretchy exercise bands? I snapped myself in the face with one during gym class in high school. My face had a bright red square on it for the rest of the day.
  86. Sometimes I wonder if I’m actually as much of an introvert as I think I am, or if it’s just laziness. I’m not a last-minute, spontaneous plan-maker. I like to make plans at least a day ahead of time so that I’m up and ready. If a friend calls me at four o’clock and says, “Let’s go to dinner at five!” I usually don’t go. I don’t want to. I don’t have time to get ready, I already made plans with my sofa for the evening, I’m in my pajamas, I’m staying home. But if a friend calls me at four on Thursday and says, “Let’s go to dinner tomorrow night!” I will go.
  87. I had a friend who drove me nuts with things like that. She had two kids, and for whatever reason, she refused to leave the house during the day. So she’d call at like 10 at night and ask me to go get something to eat with her because her husband was home and the kids were in bed. At that point, I’d already be in bed because I had to get up at four for work. I’d politely decline, explain why, and tell her that I would be available on Wednesday night if she wanted to do something then. She’d pout and moan and whine about me not going with her that night, and say that she couldn’t Wednesday night because of reasons, and then act all wounded and hurt that I “didn’t want” to get something to eat with her that night. Then other times she’d call when I was doing something, ask me to go somewhere with her, and when I said I couldn’t, the same thing happened. She literally had no regard for other people’s time. Everything had to happen when she wanted it to. She didn’t allow herself to leave the house during the day if she had her children, and when she didn’t have them, she chose to stay in with her husband instead of utilizing that time to go out with her friends, which she had so desperately wanted to do a day before. Granted, she’s a young girl, and doesn’t really have her priorities straightened out entirely, but if you think you’re old enough to have children, then you’re old enough to be an adult about your social life. You made the decision to be a mother, so now you have to cope with the fact that you’re not going to be able to go out at the drop of a hat, and if you do, you won’t always be able to find someone to go with you. End of story.
  88. I’ve since stopped hanging out with that friend, as has one of our mutual friends whom I still see pretty regularly. She has found a new friend that she works with, and the two of them are inseparable. Which suits them well, considering they’re both in the same situation. They’re both young, married women with a couple of kids. Mutual friend and I are not young, married women with a couple of kids. The situation works.
  89. I’ve been taking a hard look at how other countries in the world view Americans, and I have to say, I’m a little embarrassed. They don’t see us as the most powerful, helping, generous nation in the world. They see us as bossy, interfering idiots.
  90. I don’t understand women’s obsession with large diamonds. Anything over a carat just seems excessively large. I don’t want my wedding rings to dislocate my shoulder. I can’t imagine dropping tens of thousands of dollars on a rock that’s too big to wear.
  91. I’ve heard a lot of arguments lately against engagement rings. Lots of women are rebelling against the idea of having an engagement ring because it’s symbolic of possession. Where in the hell did you get that idea? No man has given a woman an engagement ring and said, “You’re mine now! Mwahahahahaha!” It’s not a symbol of possession. It does not allude to possession. It’s symbolic of commitment and love. The history of engagement rings never even mentions possession. They were first given as a symbol of the woman now being off the market. If she had a ring on, the other men knew that she was no longer an option for them. She was promised to someone else, and they couldn’t touch her. It still has that meaning, but has morphed from just a gemstone or pearl or fancy enamel into a diamond, which is indestructible, which represents the everlasting love between the two people. It can be considered a formality, but it’s a traditional formality that a lot of women hope for. I know plenty of women who don’t have engagement rings, and it’s not because they saw it as a misogynistic symbol of possession or anything like that. It’s because they didn’t need a ring to prove their love. They didn’t need something on their finger to feel secure in their relationship. I’m not saying that women who want a ring “need it to feel secure,” but this whole thing about them being a masculine ego booster is bullshit.
  92. I like having long hair, but I hate having to do things with it. And my hair is outrageous. It’s curly and frizzy and monstrous and if I don’t do something with it, I look terrible. And I refuse to have short hair. Because it would look awful on me.
  93. I believe in the Oxford Comma.
  94. I just realized that when my dad gets married tomorrow, I’ll have gained another stepsibling.
  95. I wonder what my grandmother thinks about my dad’s marriage. I know in the past she hasn’t been fond of Dad’s girlfriend, and I don’t know if her feelings have changed.
  96. Until I was about 21, I sincerely thought Costa Rica was an island.
  97. I think knock-off perfumes smell better than the originals.
  98. I have been working on writing the same book for over four years. I haven’t made it past chapter ten.
  99. I am reading no fewer than three books at any given time.
  100. I love all things plaid.

This has been a thing.