Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Random Bullet Points

-Did you know that if you pretend that you don't know something that a stupid person does know, it makes them really REALLY happy to tell you all about it? "Really? Iced Tea has caffeine? I had no idea!"

-I am so tired, I'm almost falling asleep at my desk. I can't believe missing sleep from Monday Night Football would still affect me on Wednesday. I even went to bed on time last night.

-My "friends"* involved me in a weight loss challenge. (Based on points for different things, not total weight loss - though weight loss factors in heavily.) I seem to be in the thick of the running (or at least not left in the dust) and I'm floored. FLOORED. Due to time constraints, I get next to no points for exercise. I'm just religious about journaling and drinking water. Which feels like I'm basically doing nothing. And yet, to date I've lost 6 lbs.

-Trust me, you're glad this is the first you've heard of the weight loss challenge. The first week of competition I was filled with great vitriol for the challenge organizer regarding how she was responsible for my lack of sustenance, and how I was obviously going to starve to death in addition to having to pee every 10 seconds until blissful death took me away.

-Internet drama is exponentially better than soap operas, but still doesn't approach the level of genius that is Gossip Girl.

-I heart Dooce.

-I had an outpouring of hatred for Biggest Loser last night, though ultimately I still enjoy the show. These people are losing 28lbs in two weeks. I call bullshit. The boy tried to pacify me with the fact that those people have a lot (LOT) more fat to lose than I do, but diet irrationality knows no bounds. I only know that it's been a bitch to lose 6 lbs, and I'm super jealous.

-Salmon is diet superfood.

-According to my BMI, I am no longer obese.** Now I'm just overweight. I still haven't changed the first two numbers on my weight, though, so I'm not sure how I feel about that formality change. Check back with me next week.

-Since I do not have one, I totally want to get on zlionfan's Wii and have it tell me how awesome I am for losing weight.

-That last bullet point just cracked me up.

*In quotes because obviously no "real" friend would deprive me of eating. ahem. They forced me. Bound and gagged me. I am an innocent (and hungry) bystander in this insanity.

**According to my BMI, people. I never believed that. I happen to think I just have heavy bones.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Where is the "Override" button?

I get a lot of "You reveal so much on your blog. I'm not sure I would be comfortable with that." I'm not quite sure I agree, but how do you explain blogging to non-bloggers? I try to explain that about 85% of my blogs are for entertainment's sake. Usually something happens in my life, and I spin it to make it the most amusing anecdote possible. My emotions in the situation are exaggerated for comedic effect, and sometimes the conversations are tweaked to be shorter, wittier, sillier etc. Every blog is based in truth, but they're always stories. They're always designed for entertainment, and they're about me. No one else. Just me.

Of course, then sometimes things happen that need no exaggeration. They're hilarious all by themselves. I think it's the universe's way of keeping me on my toes. In those moments, the boy's gotten used to me giggling to myself for hours afterwards as I "write the blog in my head." Sometimes he'll even contribute. You can thank him next time you see him.

When explaining my blog to my parents, I finally just gave them the address and let them read it themselves.* My father eventually said it was a form of therapy. I almost got to protest, but he was quick to point out that it's cheaper than a therapist (sorry Ann) so he does not think it's a bad thing.

I laughed. I can remember off the top of my head maybe one (or two) blogs that were truly my naked emotions. (And that second one? That was really lighthearted when I think back to how close to the edge I really was.) I told my father that I don't generally like admitting I have emotions....must less discussing them on this blog. I try to keep it anecdotal.

But I'll break that rule today because today? I need some therapy. Today? I feel like a failure. And while my mind knows logically that I am NOT a failure, the feeling persists.

See, this past weekend I made the decision to delay my application to vet school. This past weekend I decided that perhaps (perhaps) I had been a little bit overconfident in thinking that I could rush the process and be able to handle 18 hours of organic chemistry 2, genetics/molecular biology, biological chemistry, and microbiology/immunology next semester. Even without work. Because originally? The plan was to apply this year, and wrap up all of my classes in the spring 2010 semester.

And now the plan is to wait and apply in 2010.

I came to this conclusion after three weeks of physics 2 and an organic chemistry class that is demanding every brain cell that I haven't yet killed off with alcohol.

I don't do "weakness." I'm superwoman, remember? I can handle anything. And while I logically know that this decision isn't a bad one, and in fact, might even be the best decision I've made in a while, I can't help but feel like an utter failure.

This is not a competition thing. And this is not a feeling I've gotten from anyone in my life. Lord knows the boy is thrilled to keep me around for another year.** And my best friend couldn't be more supportive. My parents? Didn't seem to phase them. Another friend (mother of two boys under the age of 4) told me that I was most certainly NOT a failure as I'm currently living the life of three people at once. (Um, she has two children under the age of 4... I still think my life is easier.)

It's all coming from me. Just me. Because if I'm hard on people I'm close to, I'm harder on myself. The standards that I set for myself are never rarely compromised. I mean, this is the girl who trained to run 13.1 miles just because she wanted an exercise in setting a goal and achieving it. Nevermind that her previous philosophy was to "never run unless chased." Once I set a plan for myself, I don't deviate. I finish what I set out to do, come hell or high water. You know, like a bulldog.

And I KNOW I'm still going to finish the plan that I set for myself. But delaying it a year? Right now it feels like the end of the world. Like I wasn't strong enough to finish what I started. Like I totally suck for only taking 5 hours instead of the usual 10 last year and setting myself back. Like I should have made the decision to become a vet earlier in my life so that I wouldn't feel like the clock is constantly ticking on me now.

Maybe I just need some time to get more perspective. Or maybe I just need to get an A in organic chemistry to feel better. (The A in physics is a given. I have a secret weapon... if I can drag him away from the Beatles Rock Band and the football...) I vote option "B" personally. So if any of your are organic chem tutors and feel like lending your expertise, I am currently accepting applications. Encouragement in the form of DOTS is also accepted. I will also accept offers from men who would like to mow my lawn for me and relieve stress that way. The position of "comfort by laying your head on my lap and looking at me adoringly" has already been filled.***

*They've visited a total of once. Apparently my writing is not as amusing as I originally anticipated.

**Facetious. He's supportive for several other reasons. See? Trying to be lighthearted.

***By Casey you perverts.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Science

I'm weak. I'll admit it. About a week before I unexpectedly returned Blue, I was feeling tired, stressed and all around worn-out. I had just finished a load of laundry and didn't feel like folding one more article of clothing. It was a Sunday night so the boy had headed off to his house - it was just me the dogs and Laney. I was done cleaning the house, so I decided that all other responsibilities could wait until the upcoming week. I put the laundry basket with unfolded clothes in my hallway where I would trip on it the next day (and thus remind myself that clothes needed folding) and decided spur-of-the-moment to let the dogs sleep with me.

What happened next was interesting.

Instead of taking the dogs to their crates where they normally sleep, I turned off all the lights and headed into the bedroom. This is usually a trigger for joyous running and a simultaneous flying leap onto my bed by two dogs. Sleeping with me is uncommon when there are two of them (they absolutely hog the bed) so they're exceptionally happy when it happens.

When I got to my bedroom after the nighttime bathroom routine, there was only one dog waiting for me. Casey. Hmmm. Where's Blue?

Blue was skulking in the living room - head down and looking for all the world like he was going to get into trouble. My first thought was, "Oh crap. What did you chew?" (Last time I saw that look, he had my digital camera in his mouth. THAT was a good day.) A brief survey of the living room showed everything remained untouched. Confused, I encouraged, "Come on Blue," and headed back to the bedroom.

A few seconds later and again only Casey and I were in the bedroom. I went back to Blue who had the same hangdog look on his face. "Come on Buddy!" No tail wags, and seeming to fear a punishment that wasn't coming, Blue eventually skittered into my bedroom. I have no other way to describe what happened. He skittered. Tail tucked. Like I was forcing him. Like sleeping in the bedroom was punishment. Interesting.

Once in the bedroom, he perked up into the normal happy Blue and the night passed uneventfully. I put the entire incident out of my mind.

The next morning, I went to let the dogs out, and again, only Casey answered my call. This time, Blue was skulking in my bedroom door with the same hangdog look. Again, nothing was chewed. Again, it took quite a bit of persuasion until Blue skittered through the hallway to get outside. Only this time, I realized what was scaring him.

Um, Blue was afraid of the laundry basket sitting in my hallway.

THESE are the big scary pit bulls that everyone is afraid of?

So I did a little experiment. (Excuse the poor video quality.)
video
I was obviously on one end of the hallway and Blue was on the other with the laundry basket (filled with scary unfolded clothes!!!) between us. You can see Blue's tail wagging furiously as I call him. And you can almost see the indecision on his face as he paces on the other side of the big scary basket.* "Hmmm...I WANT to come to mom....but I might get EATEN! By the BIG SCARY BASKET!! What do I DO?!" (You'll have to excuse the baby talk in the video. That's not what I normally sound like. (I don't think?) But with Blue, you use baby talk. That's all there is to it. If you want to speak like a grown up, you can talk to Casey.)

When I told the boy, he summed it up perfectly. "Awww! Blue is such a pretty, dumb dog." Yes, that he is. He's pretty, and he's dumb. I then proceeded to remove the scary basket, called Blue again, and gave him a big hug when he came right to me.
video
So there's your highly scientific experiment for the day. Laundry baskets are obviously scarier than pit bulls. Make sure to spread the word.

*You also get the unintentional hilarity of Casey ignoring me completely. Like, "What? She's not calling me. Blue is so dumb."

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Missing a Dog

We hadn't really gotten a chance to mourn together, and her tears brought out mine. As I sniffled, the dogs raised their head from six feet away and immediately came over to offer their particular brand of comfort. With Blue's head in her lap, my mother said quietly, "He used to lick my hands and my feet."

It's a comment I've heard laughingly dozens of times from my mom, and one that I completely understood. Blue is a licker. My legs, my feet, my hands, my face (if he sneaks up on me.) Sometimes it's to the point of exasperation. "Blue, get back!" is a common theme in my home when he's visiting. Since my mom is the person who most resembles me in her household, I assumed Blue would attach himself to her first and, of course, the licking would continue.

But in that moment, her comment took on a different meaning.

"When you're sad? He'll lick you to offer comfort?"

Her mute nod made me cry even more. Because the dogs? It's like they sense your sadness. And they do what they can. And sometimes? It's something that no one or nothing else can accomplish.

So I'm back down to a one dog household. I'll figure out how to get him back in time for my parents to leave for their next adventure later. Because even with school and all the planning required, if Blue can be there when I can't? Priceless.