Life


So Glamour magazine has a section that I absolutely delight in reading called “Hey, it’s Ok!” It lists the little things people do that might sound a wee bit odd or against the norm but psh, it’s all about being yourself.

Thought I might share some of my own. Hey, it’s okay to …

  • Write off someone as a potential soul mate because they refuse to share food. If you can’t steal bites of each others dishes, the rest is just downhill.
  • Have a Facebook, Twitter, Myspace, Blog, Yelp, Tumblr etc but still think your real life persona is so much cooler.
  • Believe in musicals, theatre, dance and classical music and completely dismiss opera. Squirming in your seat for 3+ hours to rustic German or Italian? No thank you!
  • Wear slippers to the grocery store, there’s a reason for those hard soles.
  • Coo and awe over cuddly babies when they’re bubbly and happy but once they start crying, be relieved to hand them back to their rightful guardian.
  • Only wear a hat when you forgot to take a shower that morning and then smile as your co workers compliment you on your blue slouchy knit beanie.
  • Think that if people working out nearby are able to read a magazine or a book, they’re not working out HARD ENOUGH.
  • Secretly believe working at a ice-cream shop might have been one of the best jobs ever and I’ve held over a dozen different titles. Clown cones, Ice-cream charades and working with your BFF – life doesn’t get any better.

What are some of your “Hey, it’s Ok!” nuggets o’ life? And yes, I do realize I use bullet points more than your average person.

Here is my typical approach of drafting a new blog post:

1. Look at my blog’s homepage and realizing I haven’t posted since Nov. which is ancient history in the blogging world.

2. Decide to hate my header image … and my blog template. Proceed to spend nearly 59.99 minutes finding another suitable, minimalist blog template before realizing it costs $ to actually change the CSS sheet. Realize this is ridiculous and settle on another template from the mind blowing 15 that WordPress has to offer.

3. Finally come up with a witty blog topic before Googling the subject at hand and having  enthusiasm deflated after seeing Retro Crush & 1,000 Awesome Things having BOTH talked about it long ago.

4. Decide to not care and go forth. Thusly, here is my manifesto on why modern-day playgrounds can go gather dust and leaves for all I care. Because the playgrounds I grew up were practically a rabbit hole of wonder and oh yes, D.A.N.G.E.R.

Exhibit A: A playground I sketched a few years ago in one of those neighborhoods that seem to spring up nearly overnight. You know which ones I’m talking about. Gated communities with private playgrounds, their own sidewalks and I kid you not, their own elementary school.

Do tell, can you identify anything in the picture to the right that resembles something a child would want to play on besides that pathetic excuse for a slide? No! These plastic contraptions in their garishly bright colors have continued to replace the playground of my childhood and taking all the fun with it.

Unidentifiable tree bark has replaced sawdust, Tic Tac Toe has pushed monkey bars to the wayside and See-Saws are just mere whispers of 1994 (your kids will see your old photos and ask what strange board thing you’re sitting on). Then the horror of all horrors, the tetherball pole that entertained many a recesses has a forlorn looking piece of frayed string around a rusting pole. That’s exactly the sight I’m greeted with at my old elementary school stomping grounds. Because apparently throwing a ball around some rope is very very dangerous. And so are monkey bars. And metal slides (can’t have it heat up in the blazing hot sun and scorch your poor bum.) So what are we left with?

Empty playgrounds, that’s what. Maybe my generation is the last of its breed to run around outdoors proudly sporting scabbed knees and sun kissed cheeks. I taught myself how to ride a bike, how to ice-skate and learned to fall before I could get anywhere worth going. Video games weren’t a part of my vocabulary but now, kids are either skipping childhood and jumping headfirst into angst-ridden puberty or holed up in front of the computer playing Farmville by their web-savvy 7-year old selves.

A little touch of je ne sais pas build character. The outdoors shouldn’t be avoided but the wussy playground of current just can’t hold a 10 year old’s attention quite like YouTube. Lifelong friendships have formed from one game of FourSquare (and no, I’m not talking about the kind you can play on your iPhone.) Recesses were about camaraderie and contests on who could spin around the most on the highest metal bar.

Look how delighted these random children look! DELIGHTED!

Maybe these are the thoughts of a slightly jaded 22-year old, I already sound like one of those annoying adults who whine about how things were so much better in the ‘good old days.’ But hey, if someday money permits, maybe I’ll build an entire playground circa 1996 in my own backyard. You’re all invited.

Did the title draw you in? Mission accomplished. One of my good friends and I have birthdays merely a day apart and decided to go all out. Our party is a masquerade murder mystery set at the Academy Awards. Do you see the waves of epicness radiating from that description?

It’s beyond difficult to plan such an elaborate party. Participation is key and gosh darn it, our guests need to participate. At least 9 people are needed to pour their hearts and souls into fictional characters to set the scene. *dims lights*

Advice for those who want a murder mystery party in the future. Try host party for ideas. We actually had to purchase the game itself although all the materials were electronic. How times have changed. Scripts, black butcher paper and chalk, basic plastic masks for those unmotivated enough to buy their own. Me thinks the birthday gals are emptying our wallets but it’s all in the name of fun.

Party venues in Seattle are hard to come by unless you want your own residence to be the scene of the “crime.” Work those connections, we were able to score a banquet room downtown for no moolah whatsoever. I still wonder if event planning is my cuppa tea. I’m leaning towards “yes” since it gets the adrenaline rushing and the creative juices flowing. Who knows if it’s in my future.

The photo above was taken in Venice at the same time as the header image to this blog. I must have been standing with masks worth well over thousands of dollars. Every one was hand-stitched, painted and molded. Swarovski crystals, antique lace, and beyond. Eager tourists could also rent out their own costumes at extravagant prices from these shops to parade around the Ponte dei Sospiri (otherwise known as the ‘Bridge of Sighs’ – how romantic sounding but not so charming when you hear that it refers to prisoners who used to sigh at the breathtaking sight of Venice before taking literally, their last breaths.)

And that’s your history lesson for the day!

I love the 90’s sites are a dime a dozen. But who cares eh? It’s fun to reminisce! After reading a thread that someone started on Yelp! (they started it for me apparently – ridiculous!), let me share my wise observations of the years of yore. Born in late ’87 qualifies me for a solid 90’s child status.

FASHION:

  • Flowered leggings – atrocious but frackin’ comfortable!! Perfect for flipping on bars at the playground
  • Jelly shoes – they were the summer-time Uggs of the day. Every girl had to have a pair and if you didn’t, you were shunned (my elementary school was cruel).
  • Anything that the Fresh Prince wore

TOYS:

  • Skip-its! They started getting fancy and had ones with lights and those that counted how many times you skipped. When children actually exercised outdoors.
  • Tamaguchis and any electronic pets: so out of control that teachers had to ban them. But then how would my dinosaur be happy?
  • Marbles and Pogs – so many were lost on playgrounds
  • Polly Pockets when they were still POCKET-sized. Geez Mattel, get with the program.

I WANT CANDY:

  • Warheads made everything so much more gravy. No matter how much pain your mouth was in, you still had alollipop a day to make your doctor your best friend.
  • And heck yes, I collected Spice Girl stickers from those Fantasy Ball lollipops and slapped them in my sticker book, all 24 baby!

And last but not least, Sweet Valley High which probably made me the bookworm I am today. Don’t hate. I read more stimulating novels now, thank you. But SVH sparked it all.

I read every Sweet Valley series, not exaggerating. Every. Single. One. Sweet Valley Kids, The Unicorn Club, JuniorHigh, Senior Year, University, Elizabeth … and imagine my reaction when I find out the lovingly kooky Diablo Cody (the she-goddess of “Juno” geniusness) is making a SVH movie with a tentative 2012 release date. Move over, I’m first in line.

Totally snatched from an old Facebook note I posted. Can I plagiarize myself? I thought not. Here’s 5 and there’s a couple more I wrote on a day I must have been extremely bored. But I bet you have a short attention span and don’t want to read a big long list so here you go:

1.) Biting my nails to the quick have earned me dagger-filled glares from manicurists.

2.) My dad won a lawsuit on my behalf from when I was 6 that I vividly remember, its a good bedtime story if you’re ever that curious.

3.) As hard as I’ve tried, I can’t type all “aZn ^O^ oh-em-gee” and such nonsense. I will use periods and commas even on AIM with (mostly) proper spelling. That being said, I never use AIM or even Facebook chat. I can’t multi task that way but I’ll make exceptions for G-Chat

4.) One thing that will never appear on my resume is when I slung hot dogs and made coffee at a Lowe’s warehouse one summer. Those are memories best left forgotten. Along with the time I worked under the table at the age of 14 at the Pike Place Market but it was actually quite fun.

5.) I was invited to play the flute at Carnegie Hall when I was 10 – till my dad announced we were moving to Washington State 2 months beforehand. And now I work at a classical radio station to make up for it.

Hm … maybe my first post should have been this one. Ya know, so you can feel the warm and fuzzies that you know 5 random facts about me.