Friday, July 31, 2009

Lessons from Risky Business

Yesterday afternoon, I finally got around to watching Risky Business, and I picked up a few life lessons from young Tom Cruise:

  1. Don't trust a ho.
  2. I didn't dream big enough when my parents left me home alone.
  3. I didn't need more extra curriculars and a higher ACT/SAT score for Princeton, but I should have started running a brothel.
  4. Tom Cruise has lost all credibility (if I had any doubt).
  5. If you sink a Porsche in a lake repairs won't take long, and your brothel will more than cover the cost.
  6. Stay away from guys named Guido.
  7. My grandparents must not have loved me because I never got a huge savings bond.
  8. I don't like the name Lana.
  9. My brother isn't the only teenage boy with an abundance of idiot friends.
  10. Never trust a ho.

Monday, July 27, 2009

It's Like I Just Put My Brain in a Locker

I recently finished reading The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle by Haruki Murakami. It was a good read, and 600 pages felt like nothing because Murakami is nothing short of entrancing when he writes. It takes no effort to do the reading, but his books will really make you think as you try to figure out what the heck is going on.

I came across this passage that I feel sums up my frustrations at certain points in my life. I don't feel this way currently, but I'm recording this so that in the future I will have Murakami's much more eloquent words to describe my feelings:
Lately, it's really been bothering me that, I don't know, the way people work like this every day from morning to night is kind of weird. Hasn't it ever struck you as strange? I mean, all I do here is do the work that my bosses tell me to do the way they tell me to do it. I don't have to think at all. It's like I just put my brain in a locker before I start work and pick it up on the way home. I spend seven hours a day at a workbench, planting hairs into wig bases, then I eat dinner in the cafeteria, take a bath, and of course I have to sleep, like everybody else, so out of a twenty-four-hour day, the amount of free time I have is like nothing. And because I'm so tired from work, the "free time" I have I mostly spend lying around in a fog. I don't have any time to sit and think about anything. Of course, I don't have to work on weekends, but then I have to do the laundry and cleaning I've let go, and sometimes I go into town, and before I know it the weekend is over. I once made up my mind to keep a diary, but I had nothing to write, so I quit after a week. I mean, I just do the same thing over and over again, day in, day out.
I'm not so burned out right now that I feel this way, but I know I have those days when school and work have been less than intellectually stimulating and I feel like I'm caught up in this cycle, so I'm saving May Kasahara's words for those days.

Monday, July 20, 2009


I just finished reading Jewel by Bret Lott. A few months ago he came to speak at Belmont, and I've just gotten around to reading his work in the last few weeks. I was impressed with Ancient Highway and a collection of his short stories, but Jewel is absolutely incredible. It is the story of a woman whose last child is born with Down's Syndrome. You see her struggling to see God working in her hardships and trying to love all of her children the best she can. She attempts to provide her daughter Brenda Kay the life the doctors tell her she will never have, and she tries to hold her family together in the process.

If and when I have a family of my own I would like to re-read this book because I don't think I can fully understand having children, wanting the best for them, and then having to let them go as they grow up. I may not be able to understand it, but Lott found the perspective to write about it. The book was written from Jewel's perspective, and all I could think was, He makes me believe a woman is writing this. I never once questioned the thought process because it was so much like a woman's. Impressive to say the least.

This book was so good, and I recommend it no matter what walk of life. Male, female, married, single, children or not this book speaks on family dynamics we've all experienced, and it gives perspective to those we have not and may never experience. Plus, it's beautifully written. Read it.

She whispered, "It happens to all of us one day," her words so quiet I had to hold my breath to hear. "Your momma and daddy leave you at some point, and then you are on your own. Everyone ends up an orphan. Even me. I been an orphan since I was born."

On a completely unrelated note, our recent Tennessee weather has been beautiful. If I were able to plan it, I wouldn't have done this well because I would think that would be asking too much. Also, 24 hours at home with the family was a blessing. It feels good to take a mini-vacation to the middle of nowhere.

Thursday, July 9, 2009


As a Tennesse Titans fan, I'm of course sad to hear about the death of Steve McNair. I, like many others here in Tennessee, think he was a great guy who did a lot for Nashville, and I had been looking forward to eating at his new restaurant in the hopes that there might be a chance to see him and some other Titans around when I went. Although I respect him, I think it's incredible that people are so quickly forgiving him for the affair that would literally be the death of him. It's not that I believe we should judge him more harshly; he was a human being who made mistakes, and he lived his life in a way that overshadowed the affair, for which I respect him. However, it makes me wonder what it is that makes him different. Most public figures would be treated differently in the same situation. We are not quick to overlook extra-marital affairs.

I'm with the people who say we should overlook it and remember him as a man who loved his wife and children, but I also hope we can remember that about other celebrities who make mistakes. We have a double standard, and it doesn't seem fair to only say nice things about McNair while we make fun of Michael Jackson postmortem (disclaimer: I do not in any way consider these two men to be in the same category) for the sketchier things he was involved in.

This case is also a reminder to me that I want to live in a way that after I die people will acknowledge my flaws (as much as I would like to claim perfection I am not delusional enough to believe I have obtained it) but celebrate my life much more so. What kind of impact do I make on the people in my life? Is it positive enough that they will forgive the negatives?

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Wait and See

Sometimes there are situations you just know you're meant to be in. If I get the job for which I am currently being considered, I will know it was destined to happen because I have several strikes against me.

For one thing, I already have a full-time 8-4:30 job. This employer knows that, and it's possible I will be able to work for him anyway. There is also a second job he knows nothing about, but because I schedule my own hours there I know I can omit that information and just take less hours if he decides he wants me. Of course, he would understandably be wary of hiring me seeing as I have other commitments. If he wasn't worried about me when he learned that information, I know he is skeptical now because he got my voicemail this morning where my disgruntled answering machine "Ursula" complained about having to take his message. I was not looking for a third job and therefore felt no need to change my voicemail message for potential employers, but this caught me slightly off guard. His first response was, "After hearing your message, I'm not sure I want you to call me back."

If I were to get this job, it would be a miracle. There is very little other than a recommendation from a professor working in my favor; however, if I get it I will know this job was somehow, for some reason, meant to be mine. Thankfully, I don't need this job to survive, and I don't have to weigh my decision to take it or not. If he offers, I will take it because it's just too crazy not to believe there's a plan somewhere, and if he doesn't offer I will know this is not one of those meant-to-be situations. We'll see.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Eh, Eh

My independence weekend in North Carolina could not have been better. It was so good to see Kristen again. Even though we only see each other on rare occasions, it feels like we can always pick up where we left off, and I'm so glad it works that way. I enjoyed a few days of playing video games, eating anything and everything I could find that was unique to the NC, and finding Cheerwine wherever I looked.

On top of time with Kristen, I got a good 12 hours of alone time on the car trips. It's amazing how nice 6 hours in a car can be. I had myself and my music, and it gave me a chance to air out my thoughts. Hopefully this week will be less weird than last for my mood. Also, my car got 39.75 miles per gallon on this trip--one more reason I love the Saturn.

As soon as I come down from this coffee high I'll rest up for the first full week I've worked in a while. I'm hoping good things will come from this week. I'm not expecting specifics, and it may just be the coffee talking, but I feel like it's going to be a good week. Stay tuned to see if that prophecy is correct.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

All Apologies

I don't mean to offend people, and I don't mean to be obnoxious or annoying, but I can be and do those things sometimes. To those who put up with that personality trait of mine, I'm sorry, and thanks for dealing with me. I mean well, or at least I think I do, and if that's what I think isn't that the sign that my intentions are good? I know good intentions aren't enough, but I have to ask you to bear with me. I'm not trying to, and I'll try hard not to.


Last week's vacation was refreshing, and now I'm gearing up for a second chunk of time away from the real world. I'm leaving tomorrow to spend the holiday weekend in North Carolina with Kristen. I can't wait because it feels like it's been forever since I talked to her, and I'm also looking forward to ending this work week at 4:30 today. It will be hard to function when I get back and only work full weeks until school starts, but I'll gladly take my two half-weeks.

Since I came back to Nashville I've been in a weird mood, and I'm not sure how to describe it; it's somewhere between feeling anti-social and needy. While I can't describe it, I think the perfect remedy was a long talk last night with Jessica, who I also have not seen enough of lately. We had gyros at Mediterranean Cuisine (which could not have been more perfect), and then we spent about 3 hours at Starbucks. It was fantastic.

Whatever is influencing me, it's got me listening to a station seeded to Poker Face on Pandora, and I'm not sure how I feel about a need for Lady Gaga in my life. Oh well, here's to being back on vacation in less than 24 hours!