A Single Girl’s Guide to Life (and/or Valentine’s Day)

As a single lady, people will make all sorts of inaccurate assumptions about you. They will also give you unwelcomed advice. This post does both. Assuming you can get past that, I’ve comprised a guide for my fellow ladies on how to live…life…and/or Valentine’s Day.

Single ladies always get dissed on because they like to call V-Day Single Appreciation Day or a holiday created by greeting card companies (which, if this is you, READ A HISTORY BOOK). So, first things first, Don’t Hate Valentine’s Day. And please for love of Jane Austen, coffee, and all things holy, do NOT call it Gal-entine’s Day. You may however say ANY of the following things, and if you choose to do so, please know I want to be your bff.

leslie-knope-ovaries-before-broveries1

Single ladies are always assumed to be bored or lonely. So, nextly, (and this is really crazy and lengthy, so look out) Do Something. Don’t want to sit at home? Don’t. Tired of playing solitaire? Play my personal favorite game, “Bet-On-Your-Unsingle-Friends’-Relationships”. Grab a few other single ladies and place your bets: How long is this couple going to last? When will that one get engaged? Will they be married by the end of this year? Loser buys dinner. (And depending on your mood or inclination, everyone is a winner or everyone is a loser in alternative versions of this game).

(my current bets are for March, May, and by December 31,2014)

Single ladies always act like they can’t dress up without approval or plausible cause. Wrong! Put On Some Heels. And I’m going to cater this tip to this holiday in particular, don’t act like you not wearing pajamas and Uggs tonight will cause the world to implode. You know those shoes you only put on when you need to hang the star on your Christmas tree or get that cobweb from the corner above the fridge? Well, dust ’em off girlfriend, because you’re wearing them tonight! And even better, 98% of the people you see will be on dates, so no one will try to hit on you or comment on how tall and intimidating you are. SorryNotSorry, suckas!

I’ve heard urban legends of Single ladies who think it’s okay to still play pretend when they’re out of middle school/well into their 20s. Having an active imagination is probably a good thing, but please oh please, Don’t send yourself flowers. [Read: Don’t pretend like you have some secret super model banging down your door, but like, he’s way too attractive to be seen in daylight and like, so for real too busy to stop by and meet everyone, but has the jaw line of a young Brad Pitt and the eyes of an experienced George Clooney so everyone just calm down.] You may not believe this is a thing; I didn’t, but 2/2 girls told me they’ve heard/seen this happen first-hand. WHAT?! stop it. Pick some flowers out of the grass behind your apartment, but don’t send them to your workplace.

Single girls also really enjoy a good cry (EXAMPLE). And I get it, tension release, freedom, the cleansing from days/weeks/months of mascara build-up-it’s all liberating, but please Don’t curl up with The Notebook OR THE TIME TRAVELER’S WIFE. Seriously, crying can be cathartic, but watching an impossible love take place between two people genetically engineered to make you swoon will not somehow make any of what you’re seeing a probable or even possible reality in your life. Let’s be real, Ally was kind of a brat, and pulling even half of the crap she did would be enough for any real life Noah to throw up some deuces and hit the road. AND don’t EVEN get me started on that time traveling crap. If time is relevant, wibbly wobbly if you will, then love is a joke. I could rant for days about that movie (and about how I literally continued crying for 3 hours after I saw it), but I don’t believe it’s necessary. Stick with the Burlesques and Devil Wears Pradas tonight, friends.

I for one, as a single girl, still love Valentine’s day. And I loved making cards for my friends to let them know they make my life happier than I can make it alone. And I love making reservations to spend an entire meal with people I love talking about life and laughing about…well mostly boys and movies and how you probably shouldn’t paint your nails while driving. I love dancing in parking lots and living rooms and belting out some Pat Benatar with random strangers at karaoke. So THAT’S what I’ll be doing (probably as you’re reading this) ((well maybe not right as, because the only time I could get a dinner reservation for 3 girls was 5:45pm, so at this moment I’m probably chatting up the other 80 year olds about what Valentine’s Day was like back in the 50s and did people still like chocolate this much, because how could they not, and yes, I get it, I’m not getting any younger, and why are we still talking to you, you’re ruining our night)). And I’ll be imitating Prince, just like this all night, because, duh, why would you ever not aspire to be this way?

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The 4 stages of Nashville.*

Unmitigated Awe. You develop almost instinctively a respect for the variety of people, style choices, and coffee preferences; a respect that causes you to defend strangers on the street to your tourist relatives.

 

Unfortunate Prejudice. You suddenly know with great conviction that the coffee shop (or coffee parlor, if you will) that you frequent is far superior to that other one around the corner half a block up in that abandoned gas station, and God help you if you actually drink the stuff they call coffee at the one where you sit on high stools and communicate your order to the barista using only your eyes.

Ubiquitous Cynicism. Somewhere along the way (and transition into this stage is almost imperceptible), your first response starts to become “yeah, ok”. You doubt that anyone is doing anything just because they like it; you doubt that anything can change; you doubt that anything can stay the same; you question all things and all people.

Unfaltering Pride. You’ve seen it, heard it, felt it, and now this is your city. Weird or not, elite or not, ridiculous or not, you love the people, the sights, the sounds, and heaven knows you’ll throw serious shade on anyone who dares to question anything about it.

*These stages are mostly sarcastic, developed mainly for entertainment purposes only, and represent the opinions of the author solely, not all of Nashville. (so calm down, Nashvillians.)

the roaring twenties.

Sometimes I get really confused by those of us fortunate enough to be in our 20s. All the time I feel like I find myself encountering situations where someone I feel like I know pretty well does something that doesn’t at all seem consistent with who they are or what they’re about. And I get it, we’re trying to find out where we belong and what we’re good at, and if others are like me, we’re afraid of settling into wherever we happen to be right now just in case it’s wrong. …Ok, so maybe now I’m projecting onto the rest of my people, but I feel like I can’t possibly be the only one who feels that.

What if what we’re passionate about isn’t worthwhile? And what if our goals just aren’t attainable? What if the quirks of our personalities that we think are endearing are actually offensive?
So the doubt begins to drive decisions. It makes self proclaimed homebodies decide that they want to leave the house at 9:00 to go hang out with friends at a loud get together. People who have lived and learned about themselves start putting themselves back in situations that even the 8th grade version of themselves knows will not end well. We’re so afraid of being wrong.
And worse, being wrong without getting the chance to make it right. Because now suddenly, the stakes are higher, and everyone’s current favorite thing to do is dissect millennials and their choices and faults and impossibilities. The margin for error seems slim.
So how do we cope?  By experimenting? By selling out?
I’d like to believe that those two things aren’t synonymous. I want to push myself; I want to grow; I don’t want routine for routine’s sake. But I want to be confident in who I am. I don’t want to constantly doubt all the things I’ve come to know. I don’t think true wisdom is mutable; the applications of it, sure, but not wisdom itself, and I don’t want to act as if it is.
So take that, twenties! (I don’t know how to end this post) But this seems fitting.

GIF LIFE.

Home from camp. And I can’t remember the last time I was this excited about anything. Here’s a quick look back and forward for those of you still faithfully keeping up with me.

How I feel about being home

The things I’m going to be doing for the next week:

My reaction so far to wanting to talk about camp:

(but my feelings in 1 picture that’s worth 1,000 words):

ttyl. xoxo -j

 

CAMP.gif

It’s time. If you’re not up to speed on camp lingo, this will probably be a super lame waste of your time. If you are, then you’re about to get the fastest most accurate and thorough update of my summer.

This year, I am Program Director. A fact that when I told most people who know both Fuge and me got this reaction from them:

So basically what that means is that I manage stage/program elements. At first I felt a little like this about getting to run mornings and worships:

Then we finished training week, and my staff is great, and my leadership team is AMAZING (and supportive), so I started being more like this when people referenced me being PD:

I won’t even play, there was a learning curve for sure, but as I love learning new things, and organizing things, and music, and (theoretically) people, it was fun figuring it out! There have been a few curve balls though, so for discretion and the sake of being kosher, I will leave you to apply the thousand words each of these pictures/elements deserve:

When bands want 3 hours of rehearsal a day

When I have to control House Lights by Flipping Breakers (and also get staff to be on time/listen at any point ever)

When I’m in charge of Planning AND Running Mega Relay

When I have to repeat myself, which is pretty much all the time, every time I say anything, ever.

When the band asks for more rehearsal time after camp is in full swing even when they’re not on time for what they already have.

When I move, reconnect, loop, and test all my lights. And they work properly!

When the Sound Guys are on my side.

When campers don’t know who I am AND LITERALLY SHUN ME FROM THEIR CONVERSATIONS

The Band saying they REALLY need like 3 hours to rehearse

So I guess at the end of the day, this is how I feel about being a PD. It’s cray, but I kind of love it.

reasons why being bad at tag Might equal being bad at dating

As previously stated, on a playground is where I spend most of days (ok, ok it’s actually inside a school building, but I wanted to get the Fresh Prince stuck in your heads), and I’m finding more and more that there are lots of life applications to be made there. This week it dawned on me that the game “tag” (specifically freeze tag) and dating are an awful lot alike. This led to some introspective sarcasm, and thus this post was born.

When you embark on a game of tag, someone has to be declared “it”, and as a participant you have to find the perfect mixture of willing to be it, but somehow managing to not actually be it. I am not good at finding this balance. Every time, I’m either adamantly NOT it (which either means, you will be it [because people are rude] or they’ll decide your obstinacy prevents you from being a viable tagging target [because people are rude & you wouldn’t chase them if they tagged you]) OR I’m all “ok, ok I’ll be it” (and then…you have to be it.). I’ll spell out the dating implications here briefly, it means either you’re

or you’re

except not all sweet like this…since he’s actually Prince charming.

 

But let’s say you master the first hurdle and aren’t it, but are instead running from the tagger. Eventually, they’ll tag you, and you’ll wait to be untagged, and then it gets interesting. In my observation, it’s an unspoken rule that once you’re unfrozen, you have to jog backwards in slow motion loudly exclaiming “oh, I am free again, I sure hope I don’t get caught agaaiiinnnn”. This is problematic for me because I have a hard time going backwards. Looking backwards, sure, but intentionally going backwards? Nope, I like to get all Walt Disney Meet the Robinsons on life  and shout “KEEP MOVING FORWARD” at everyone [side note: this will not make you a crowd favorite at hockey games or in an airport. Trust me.] Either you tag me or you don’t. Call me or don’t. I’m not even trying to be about enticing someone…ain’t NObody got time fo dat.

(parenthetical aside)

 

And if I’m playing a game where the goal is to outsmart you and escape, I WILL OUTSMART YOU AND ESCAPE. And I won’t even begin to realize the error of my cunning intricacies until several years post college my leg starts cramping from the precarious position I’ve wedged myself into underneath the swirly slide’s steps.

I’ll be honest, in my playground days, I was the tag player who quit after being tagged more than once, because yeah right, like I’m going to stand here and wait for someone to untag me? Watch this you bunch of dopes, I’M NOT ACTUALLY FROZEN. (apply that to dating as you will)

Besides, whenever I play tag, I generally look like this

and metaphorically, it’s much the same for dating.

 

*this was the hardest post to write because I abhore the word “it”. Guess ‘it’s’ not such a pointless word after all.

expressionism

I am an expressive person. Sometimes people hate that, sometimes people love it. I mostly am surprised by it. But since this is a blog and some of you don’t get to see my face e’ry day, I’ve decided to attempt a new, absolutely arbitrary fairly consistent post conveying my reactions to certain things. Make requests if you want, or just deal with the insanity that is my brain. It affects me not. (also, #myfriendsaremarried hits a lot of nails on the head with this type ish. but sometimes it’s profane; be warned.)

how I feel about a friend telling me we’re going different directions now 

because, like, seriously people, last I checked we were all spinning around the same sun with the exact same amount of minutes in our days.

how I feel when people say they don’t like coffee.

because, WHAT DRUGS ARE YOU DOING THEN, CRAZY?

& one last one for today:

how I feel when more than one bird flies near me in public

because you know how they do—rollin’ up on you absolutely unannounced, lookin’ all full of bird flu and what not.

until next time, peeps. ugh, I hate it when people say that. But not like I hate birds, so there’s that. x0x0, j