Monday, October 31, 2011

Halloween Times

Real quick Blog. Happy Halloween! This year I went as Babe the Blue Ox. My dear and sweet friend Kerin was kind enough to accompany me as the most adorable version of Paul Bunyan ever:

Turns out Babe outdoes Paul on giantness.

I realized that I haven't really been writing about what I've been up to, Blog. And for that I apologize to the me of the future. I want to have the option to relive my life by way of random and dated ramblings that I spill out to you, Blog. I'm going to make a point to become more specific on the happenings that be happening. That weird picture up there of Kerin and I is the first step to documenting my life via the internet. Well, that and the fact that I've been blogging pretty continuously for the past five years, but who's really keeping track...

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Oh Good...

Blog, my penchant for learning about notorious serial killers has lead me to this:

The little statement at the beginning pretty much explains it all, but in case you're too lazy to watch, that clip right up there pieces together all the highlights of serial killer Rodney Alcala's appearance on The Dating Game back in the 70's. And, spoiler alert, but he wins. That chick chose him as her date after asking ridiculously cheeky and embarrassingly executed (no pun intended) questions. Luckily she went back on her decision after the show had wrapped up and declined a date with him because she found him to be "creepy". In the end she saved herself from being strangled and balled up into a peculiar position in the comfort of her own apartment. And no, it's not like he decided to become a serial killer after he was rejected by the goofy and awkward Cheryl. He was in the midst of a killing spree at the time this was filmed. If my sources serve me correctly (those sources being Wikipedia) he was locked up just a year after this aired in 1979 and has been in prison ever since; most recently residing on death row after being convicted of a bunch of rapes and murders in California.

There's more about Rodney the Rapist (and murderer) at, which is where I learned about him in the first place.

This whole thing just makes me appreciate how far the screening process has come for, oh you know, everything since the 1970's.

It also makes me want to punch myself in the face for reading about serial killers late at night as I, a young, single, and conventionally attractive twenty-something woman, spend the evening alone in my apartment. I think it's time to watch a little bit of this and call it a night.

Friday, October 28, 2011

North Dakota Weekend... Again

Blog, the internet is disappointing me in the lack of distraction it's providing today. So I guess I'll write in you.

This past weekend I went to North Dakota. I am originally from there, as I've mentioned a million times before. North Dakota is an amazing place, but only for three days. After that, it's time to leave and come back to a place where things make sense to me. North Dakota makes sense to me too I guess. It's a place I can go to reset myself and get in touch with the one area in this world that is the most familiar to me. But after living in not North Dakota, I find it refreshing to return to the city and the hustle and bustle that is completely absent from the plains. Even when it was the only place I had ever known, I never felt like I belonged in North Dakota. And going back, it certainly is home to me, but I still tend to feel out of place. I don't have a preference over Sioux or Bison. I don't know what grows in the fields outside of my house. I don't understand how the farmers co-op works. I don't own anything with fertilizer advertising on it... The list goes on.

But I like it enough to appreciate it and recognize it as a place that has contributed to who I am today. Blah blah blah. I've written about this a million times before. North Dakota. I guess I'll just proceed with some pictures...

Making our trek to the bar on Saturday night.

Kerin's first harvested cornfield experience.

My first flying experience.

I forgot how fun it is to play in the tall grass. There's something so comforting about completely disappearing from sight in a vast expanse of fertile land.

A view from the grass. Hello dear friend Ariel!

My friends in a field.

Dear Ariel Wolf on her way back to town.

That's all I've got Blog. Tonight I embark on a lovely weekend that I plan on spending with friends and taking some time to paint myself blue. It should be wonderful.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Minnesotan Commentary

Blog, I'm just gonna get this out of the way right now so I don't have to worry about it when everyone else is going at it. This will be my yearly commentary on how Minnesotans are notorious for allowing their lives to revolve around snow, the idea of snow, the memory of snow, and the absence of snow. No matter what season it is, you find them talking about snow:

Early Winter - There's snow right now, but there's not that much snow. I mean, it's just snow right? We're Minnesotans. We know how snow is. Whatever. Snow. No big deal about that snow that's everywhere. Time to drive 80 mph on a slick highway!

Mid to Late Winter - We just got 20 inches of snow! There is so much snow out there! I can't believe all the snow that we've gotten over the past week! But whatever. No big deal. This winter is still milder than every other winter I've ever experienced in my life.

Spring - There's still snow here, can you believe it? It's April. Everywhere else is full of flowers and hummingbirds by now.

Summer - Remember how much snow there was when it was winter? Now there's none. But just you wait!Three more months!

And then there's November. November is the month when snow first happens despite any rumors you might hear of snow actually happening in October. Snow, contrary to popular belief, doesn't happen in October and if it does it only happens once every ten years and it's like half an inch in some obscure county in the northern part of the state. November is where it's at with first real snow fall. But the thing is, until that first snow happens, Minnesotans get all antsy about it. They are like "It's cold, but there's no snow. Something's amiss." "The leaves have all fallen from the trees, yet the ground is bare. Something's amiss." "Parka? Never! There is no snow yet. It's still summer. Yet it's November. Something's amiss." Their worst fears might come true and it perhaps may not snow at all. Then what would they have to brag/comment/complain about for the next period of infinity? Farming? Loons? Paul Bunyan?*

So until the snow arrives, everyone is on edge with hopes that their validity as cold-bearing, shovel-wielding Minnesotans won't be diminished with the vast presence of brown grass and naked trees that occupies their state.

And then it's here. And in that moment when the ground is so silently covered in white, the bragging and commenting and complaining and car accidents begin with full force... and it won't stop until never.

I realize that I myself am considered a Minnesotan. I have a Minnesota license, a Minnesota address, and a slight Minnesotan accent. But one thing I learned when I first moved to this state from the "barren" expanse of North Dakota is that the locals here can't get enough of the snow-talk. And because that realization has stuck with me over the last 9 years that I've lived here (It's been 9 years? 9? Jesus.) I've taken to commenting on not the snow and its presence, memory, absence, what have you, but the reaction that Minnesotans themselves have to it. This thing. That happens. Every. Single. Year.

They have this uncanny knack to act like it is the most amazing, wondrous, rare experience that happens all the time and is no big deal at all.

Ok. Yearly rant over. Except I do want to say that I'm going to put an early New Year's resolution out there and do my best to bite my tongue this year when everyone is facebooking about how it was three degrees colder in Shoreview this morning than it was in frickin' Bloomington. Guess what. Three degrees means nothing. It only matters if freezing is involved, and we all know that by January everything is frozen anyway. Get over it and put on a sweater.

*Speaking of Paul Bunyan, I must insert that I have thought of the most brilliant Halloween costume this year what with going as Paul's trusty sidekick Babe the Blue Ox. Even though I have a date to the Halloween party I'm attending, I don't have a Paul Bunyan to complete the tall tale awesomeness that I am going to replicate (my date thinks Steve Jobs is actually something you can dress up as). Luckily, Kerin's husband Nick has offered up his lumberjack manliness and support and will be making a cameo as Paul himself. God bless friends' husbands.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

One Year Makes All the Difference

One year ago today my life was turned upside down with a six word sentence. At the time I thought it was the end of everything I knew, loved and cared about in the world. And in a way it was for certain things. But now, one year later, I realize that that sentence wasn't an ending, but the beginning of one of the most interesting years of my life. A portal was opened with those words and it has opened other portals and avenues that I never even thought possible for me to experience and know. I solidified friendships new and old, traveled to Europe, obtained a sister in law, met my niece, wrote more than I've written in a long time and developed a penchant for wine that I fear will never die. Here I sit one year later, at the same desk I numbly sat at with tears filling my eyes, and now I know that I can't let myself be afraid of a little sentence that simply states:

"I think we should break up."

It could mean that the most wonderful and interesting year yet is just at its beginning.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Hate and Love

Blog, I haven't bought peanut butter in a year. That's a long time for someone who used to live off of peanut butter sandwiches. Ooh, and even better, grilled peanut butter sandwiches. It's like a grilled cheese, but with peanut butter. Try it sometime. It'll blow your internet mind. I promise.

Why haven't I bought peanut butter? I don't know, Blog. I don't know. I think it's just that I kept forgetting for some reason. And then I forgot enough to where I don't even think about it anymore. I might have at first regretted my forgetfulness once I returned home with no peanut butter in hand after a trip to the grocery store, but now it's gotten to the point where it's not even part of my life anymore. It's really sad to think about since peanut butter and I used to have such a strong and involved relationship. What's more is that I had a taste of peanut butter over the weekend and now my palate has been reminded of the glory it holds within its sticky substance. Blog, I must break this strange and accidental habit I've acquired over the course of 2011 and buy some goddamned peanut butter. It's time.

In other news, here are some things that I hate and love...

I hate parallel parked cars that don't understand how much space they are taking up. Either you get your ass flush with that yellow line, or you go elsewhere. I understand you want some wiggle room between yourself and your parallel parked car neighbors, but five feet is too much. If you can fit two of you in the space you've so selfishly taken for yourself, then I think I should be allowed to attempt to violently park my boat of a car in the half a space you've so graciously left me in order to give you an updated lesson in parallel parking etiquette.

I hate that band The Decemberists. I don't like how their music sounds and I don't like the lead singer's voice. What don't I like about their music? I don't know. Those melodies rub me the wrong way. I find them boring, predictable, and sickening. That guy's voice is whiny and annoying. Enough said.

I hate the band The Hold Steady for many of the reasons I stated above for hating The Decemberists. Boring melodies, don't like that lead singer's voice. Most of all? Stop rhyming so much. Just. Stop. I can't handle rhyming for the sake of rhyming, unless it's a clever sonnet or something. But The Hold Steady isn't made up of clever sonnets. It's made up of a dude yelling rhymes into a microphone with a boring guitar riff playing in the background.

I hate being super hungover, like I was yesterday. I also hate shots of jag and gin and tonics combined with copious amounts of wine. This may or may not be related to why I hate being hungover. It's hard to tell since memories of Saturday night are fuzzy. All I know is that feeling like someone is drilling into the left side of your head is not the best way to spend a Sunday. Also, falling down on your way home from the bar might be a sign that it's time to stop with the alcohol intake. Just a thought.

I hate that the person who's clothes are taking up both dryers downstairs doesn't have a proper concept of  time. Your shit's been dry for 45 minutes sir/madam. Make the trek down to the basement to gather your garments so I can dry mine. Lord knows the moment I go down there and remove those clothes myself, you're going to enter into that chilly dungeon of a laundry room and things are going to get real awkward real fast.

But you know what?

I love how it smells down there right now. Though you are pokey with your laundry pick up, I'm curious as to what detergent you're using. It smells magnificent and if I could make my wardrobe carry that scent all my troubles would come to an end, I am certain of it.

I love being really hungry and knowing exactly what I want to eat. Tonight it was macaroni and cheese. The craving actually started last night when I for some reason found myself mesmerized by this ridiculousness:

Three quarters of a box of mac and cheese later, I'm pleasantly stuffed. But what I love even more than eating mac and cheese when it's all I want in the whole wide world, is washing each bite down with a sip of cold milk. Oh the dairy! The dairy of it all!! Thank you cows. You are my favorite kind of livestock right now.

I love calling lunch dinner and dinner supper. It brings me back to the days of eating gravy bread at the kitchen table and fruit cocktail for dessert all while silently judging my brother who wouldn't wash his dinner (or supper for that matter) down with a glass of milk but instead drank boring tap water that ended up giving us all giardia. Reason number 1,583 why milk is way better than any other beverage (besides wine) ever in the world.

I loved Saturday night up until I got so drunk I couldn't form thoughts in my mind. That was most of the night for the record. To be a part of such a great group of people and have my spot there with everyone was a really great and entirely new experience for me. Everyone had their person, and everyone had each other. The guys had the guys, the girls had the girls and we all loved each other at the end. Of course, then Jon bought me that shot of jag and things were downhill from there. But up until that moment: magic.

I love this song on the radio right now. Of course I have no idea what the song is or who sings it, but I like it because it is interesting for me to listen to. The word "naked" is part of the lyrics. There is sycopation going on. An overarching melody is happening in the chorus. Sing it mystery band. All in all, the tune reminds me of some of the metal bands my college boyfriend and I would listen to as we drove the strip in Bemidji for hours and hours on end during our freshman year just so we could get some alone time with one another, though this song isn't quite metal. Also now that I'm an adult, I don't need to take refuge in a 1992 Ford Explorer for some solitude. I like, Blog. I like. No, love.

Oh, and we mustn't forget. I love this guy. I love this guy on his buffalo:

Friday, October 14, 2011

My Pushup Mantra

Blog, my friend Trisha has brought to light the wonder of pushups and how in just a matter of days you can build up enough stamina to actually do them, like for real.

I remember I started hating pushups in the first grade when Mrs. Johnson would make our little 7 year old bodies hover just inches above the ground to the point where "your nose has to touch the floor". Even though little Samantha didn't have the cumbersome boobs and ass that eventually would take over her body, she still found it to be incredibly difficult to lower herself down to the point where she was face to face with the hundred year old floor boards of the Berg Gym. The Berg Gym, where little Samantha made her first theater debut as a cow in a children's theater production of Beauty and the Beast. The Berg Gym where little Samantha belted out the lyrics of Ace of Base's "I Saw the Sign" at one of her first school dance experiences. Oh that Berg Gym. I think they've torn it down now...

I digress. Even my 60 pound, 7 year old body couldn't handle push ups, so when little Samantha became self conscious teenage Samantha, things really started going downhill in the pushups department. Especially when my classmate Jen was berated by her peers when her version of the horrid exercise was compared to that of a beached whale humping the ground. When us developing ladies were finally given permission to drop our knees to the ground so we could take the pressure off of our weak upper bodies, I gave in to the handicap and haven't looked back since.

And then Trisha brought to light the actual idea of building up strength through exercise. What? Who would have ever thought such a thought? That's preposterous! I'm a fully developed woman, Trisha. My giant ass will never allow me to do a pushup without the aid of my knees. It's simply impossible. My weak arms cannot support the mass of my entire lady body. Physics will not allow this idea of me doing a "man" pushup to become a reality.

Well, that's what I was thinking two weeks ago. After adjusting my pushup form and getting a pep talk from Trish, I struggled and panted through five measly pushups; my nose nowhere near the ground. But I kept at it, and now I'm up to sets of 15, Blog. 15. Last night I did 15 man pushups in a row. My nose still hasn't touched the ground like Mrs. Johnson would have liked, but I'm feeling the burn nonetheless. Though this is a small feat, it is also a sad reminder of how closed off I am to things that I find utterly impossible. I should really start applying this push up mantra that Trisha has shown me to other things that seem impossible, like... not drinking during the week. Oh Jesus. It's so intimidating to say that. I kind of hate myself for it. Maybe I'll just work on getting my nose to touch the carpet...

Monday, October 10, 2011

Music Woes

Mmm mmm mmm Blog. I love me a good organ. I also love me a good keyboard. I'm sad I don't have one, and even if I did I'd have no where to put it. I'm so depressed that I've pretty much lost my ability to play any percussive instrument that resembles a piano. I'm going to be going home in a couple weeks. I have to have to have to find some time to brush up and at least try to plunk out a couple old tunes. I've got a few staples that I memorized back in high school and college that I can still get a strong start on. Whenever I come across a keyboard in a music store, I do my best to remember how it feels to play that one waltz by Beethoven or the pretty part of the Intermezzo by Brahams. But the most depressing part is that I foolishly left a stash of my favorite piano books on top of a bookshelf that is currently in Maple Grove, locked away in a house in which I am no longer welcome. What's worse is that I've burned the bridge I need to cross to get them back. I should really stop reminscing about the days when I actually had musical prowess in these now uncoordinated and stiff fingers of  mine. It just proves to be nothing but a way to make my heart sink.

How's that for depressing, Blog? Don't worry. I'll snap out of this soon.

What little the internet has to offer on my lost waltz.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Back to Blogging

Blog, I feel like I'm brain dead. Maybe I should start reading again. I've been so very bad at it for the past couple years, I just can't get into it. Maybe I should start exercising again; it clears my mind and allows me to think and focus. Maybe I should get into the habit of writing about things other than my love life and the inane feelings that overcome me when boys happen.

Maybe I'll get a cup of tea and take a moment during this slow work day to think about what it is I really want to write about in this, my first post in October.

This tea is not as hot as I'd like it to be. Sigh. No, that is not what I really want to write about.

It's actually been on my mind lately that it's coming up on a year since Ryan broke up with me. I'm pretty much over it outside of the realization I had the other day when I ran into him in the elevator lobby and ended up hiding behind a corner to avoid him. It's not the pain of no longer having him in my life that kept me so childishly behind the corner; that pain is long gone. What drives my avoidance is now the incredible awkwardness that would saturate any sort of interaction between us. I stood there peeking around the edge of the lobby, raking my brain for any sort of casual "how do you do" or "good morning" approach that would be appropriate if we were to end up in an elevator together. Absolutely nothing came to mind. With my cartridge completely depleted of any social ammunition combined with the buzzing feeling that had completely taken over my mind and body, I realized that Ryan is completely out of my life. There is absolutely nothing we have to talk about and there is no interest we have whatsoever in one another.

What difference a year can make. Last October we were still sharing a bed.

And thus Samantha chose to write about her feelings that boys conjure within her regardless of her laments over doing so an overwhelming amount in her blog. Christ I'm annoying.

What I really wanted to say was that I've lately been very aware of my typing habits. I think this is because I'm bored at work today and have become fascinated with watching my fingers hit the keys with the regular motions and strokes that I never think twice about. This is complex shit that's happening literally under my nose day in and day out and I never take note. Every bit of text I create whether it be in you Blog or in an email to a learner or to Kerin or chatting with friends on gmail is created so instantaneously with the the use of 26+ separate and tiny keys. It's really quite the feat when you think about the sounds that we've turned to symbols that we've learned to draw and write that we've translated onto a keyboard that in the end allows us to silently dictate our thoughts through what seems like random punching performed by our fingers. We can have silent conversations lead by our fingers. We can create thoughts and ideas as they form in our minds. It's almost as if you are a window into a piece of my brain, Blog. Lucky you. Keyboards and typing are amazing. That's all I really have to say about it.

Also, what I really wanted to say is that the longest academic paper I've ever written was 10 pages long. It was my senior thesis for my undergrad degree. Yes, I went to a state school. Yes, I feel incredibly inept at writing academic papers. No, I don't discredit my writing abilities due to the two previous facts I have just uncovered about myself. I'm going to be all charter school about it and let my writing style lead me to wherever it may instead of trying to box it up in an MLA format with quotes and commas and paranthetical citations. Gross. There is a time and a place for the, in my opinion "overuse", of punctuation (no punctual pun intended with the massive amount of said punctuation in this sentence, and yes, I'm completely aware it's probably incorrect).

I just re-read this whole thing and hate it. But it will do as far as getting back on track with my blogging goes.