Sunday, March 22, 2009

Live each day like it's your third-to-last.

Over the past year, and even more so in the past few weeks, I have grown acutely aware of my own mortality. It's not like I thought I would live forever before I stumbled into this period of reflection. I just didn't think about it at all. And suddenly I'm spending hours online looking at pictures of irregular moles... the passing of celebrities gives me more pause... any sort of risky behavior is now completely off-limits ("Sushi? No thank you. I'll be locked in my room eating canned soup and vitamins.") Realizing the limits of your own existence also makes you prioritize like a crazy person, to the point where anything that seems even slightly unnecessary becomes a big joke in the grand scheme of things (Laundry? Ha! Why? And don't even talk to me about paying bills, clipping fingernails, etc.) I imagine the key to it all is realizing what's important, understanding what petty things will keep you happy in the day-to-day, and striking a balance between the two. So, in my case, I will call home more often and perhaps do a better job of finding my true calling in life, but if I want to waste two hours of my time on earth milling around World Market, so be it. No one has ever died debating the decorative merits of half-price throw pillows.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

And the eyes they were a color I can't remember

Just once, I would like to be able to pull off red lipstick without looking like a hooker or a corpse. And here I thought it was just because of my unspoken vow to never spend more then $3 on a tube of lipstick. I proved myself wrong by spending $10 and walking away looking like Tim Curry. Ah well, you win some, you lose some, you add another tube to the bathroom drawer. I should start telling guests I'm the makeup artist for an off-off-Broadway production of "Chicago."

Things at work have slowed a bit to the point where I'm envisioning myself at the center of some trend piece for the Tribune about people who have been laid off twice. It will be titled Double Sided Axe. Or something.

I spent my afternoon writing about gasoline refining and listening to my Otis Redding station on Pandora. I've also grown fond of a secret station I have which plays a lot of Taylor Swift. If this appeals to you as well, let's drive to Sonic and listen to "Love Story" or "Tim McGraw" at full volume, laughing as our blond hair blows in the Georgia breeze. If you're laughing, I will cut you.

Speaking of music, there are a few new songs I can't stop listening to, one in particular to point where I'm driving myself crazy with my own addiction. First I fell in love with AC Newman's band, and then his lisp (yes, lisp! not lips) and now this song.

SeeqPod - Playable Search

I actually broke down and bought the new Neko Case CD from Starbucks one morning last week, essentially paying $15 for a venti coffee with room and a bonus CD and a sample of that horrid looking instant coffee that I'm saving to make the day the world ends and my coffee maker gets trampled in the chaos.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

There exists a man who has, for all intents and purposes, stolen my schedule and whereabouts. Or maybe I have stolen his, depending on who set out on this particular segment of life first. He lives two buildings down from me on Roscoe, and on certain mornings, we leave our apartments at the same time. We walk to the bus stop, although I'm usually about twenty feet behind him since his building is about twenty feet closer to the bus stop. We ride the same bus; today I got on first because I am a lady. We work in the same building, which means we exit the bus at approximately the same time (depending on how crowded it is). We get in the same bank of elevators (there are three to choose from). And today, we got in the same individual elevator. Never before has this happened, but it allowed me to pinpoint the exact place our parallel lives diverge: he works on the sixth floor, and I work five floors above, on the 11th. I'm not sure what he does for a living because the sixth floor is one of those plain-label floors with no signs or distinguishing characteristics. Right now, I'm feeling a bit possesive of my weekdays, my block, my buildings. And while nothing else is adjustible at this point in time, I may start taking a different bus.

Saturday, March 07, 2009

You're the one that I still miss, and the truth is that it comes as no surprise.

I was recently chastised for having let this blog fall by the wayside, so here I am. That's not to say that I needed prompting to keep writing; I missed having a forum as well. For the past three weeks, my thoughts have had nowhere to go except my restless feet and the refrigerator. Basically, this job is taking up a lot of room inside my brain, and virtually everything else has suffered as a result. But not anymore! Today, I firmly resolve to maintain a sense of balance, to continue to pursue the creative outlets that make me happy, to finish coloring in this fuzzy unicorn poster.

Things that have happened in the world of what's important to me since I last wrote:

Neko Case released a new album.

E-music erased my account, preventing me from downloading it.

I read
Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close.
(Full disclosure: I never finished Everything Is Illuminated because I just plain didn't want to. However, I really enjoyed this one.)

I remembered how much I had missed someone.

The ARRA passed.

The monkey slamming continued.

My brother Joe left for Chile, and so continues the entire Monahan family's gradual migration to Central and South America. Next thing I know, Paul will decide to attend a party school in Panama, my mom will move to Bolivia, and I'll be forced to find a Nicaraguan Craiglist roommate. Anyway, I'm excited to hear about his adventures, and I imagine there will be many. His first e-mail detailed a wonderland of privatized public transportation and rapid-fire Spanish, where every stranger is friendly and every food item is served with a fried egg on top. This last point ended up being the main focus of his letter, as Joe will eat fried toothpaste as long as it's sunny side up.

Come to this show! But These Are My Dress clothes is my Second City Writing Five class's sketch revue. I've seen it rehearsed every Monday for the past five weeks now, which amounts to watching the same sketches over and over and over again, and yet my amusement persists. Smart writers. Talented actors. It's a good show - I'd even venture to say great, and I only think a few things are actually great (sleep, carbonation, aspartame).


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