Tuesday, March 31, 2009

We're All Adults Here

*Disclaimer: (and warning) You are about to read an angry, venting, ranting, raging blog post. But I would like to now state that this has nothing to do with anyone living in the BC, or even in the Provo area. So no need for any of my Provo friends (who are the majority of who read this blog) to get up in arms about anything I might say, because it is not about you. When I say "a friend," I really do mean a friend, not myself. Just so you all know. And yes, I know this is a very long disclaimer. I'm done now.

We are all adults here, right? We're all 20-somethings who are on our own, making our own way in the world, making our own decisions, dealing with our own responsibilities. Most of us handle our work, school, church, and financial responsibilities with maturity, even when they get complicated and stressful.

So why can't the same be said for our personal relationships, whether those be romantic relationships or strictly friends? I have a friend (I swear this is not a euphemism for me) who I have known for a very, very long time. We went to elementary school, junior high, and high school together, and have stayed very close since we graduated high school and went to different colleges. She is absolutely amazing. I love her so much. She is such a good friend, because she cares so much about the people in her life, and she shows that in her actions.

I have seen people take advantage of her caring nature, and they do their best to manipulate her into doing things for them and sacrificing what she wants because she wants to make people happy. She's a peacemaker, and some of her "friends" seem to take that as a weakness, a spot they can use to make her do what they want her to do. And I hate it. Some of the stories she tells me make me absolutely livid.

But this latest one put me over the edge. The complete immaturity of her "friends" has me itching to drive to Cedar, smack these two people across the face, and give them a good talking to, just to let them know that someone is on my friend's side.

So this friend has liked a boy for a while now. Quite a while. And recently he has acted in ways that have given her hope that his feelings toward her were changing. She told me about all the things that he was doing (we have a good time swapping boy stories), and it certainly seemed promising to me, too. He was flirting, and usually that's a good sign, right?

Well, apparently not in this case. This boy (and I'm emphasizing boy here) apparently told one of her friends that he doesn't like her "like that." Okay, whatever, that's life. But instead of just telling her, "You know what, I like you a lot, but I just want to stay friends," he went about it in a way that turned him into (in my friend's words) a douche.

From what I have heard (and yes, I know I'm only getting one side of the story, but I trust her when she tells me these things) he has been completely and totally immature and childish about this whole situation. Instead of being an adult and talking with my friend, he has decided to plot with her roommate as to how he can make my friend stop liking him, without jeopardizing the friendship. Their plan: treat my friend like complete dirt for three days, so she can "get over" this boy. Well, it worked, but I don't know about the status of their friendship. And to throw the roommate in the mix is just absolutely ridiculous!

How juvenile is it to think, "I don't want to tell her the truth, because that would be too difficult for me. I don't want to have that talk, so I'm going to act as though she's the annoying, tagalong friend who got invited out of pity, and spend all my time talking to her roommate. But I still want to be her friend." Good laws, boy, grow a pair and talk to her! She's an adult, just like you (are supposed to be)! Yes, "the talk" is going to suck. Yes, her feelings will get hurt. Yes, she will probably take a few days to start acting normally again. But it will all be to your benefit. Because instead of thinking of you as a coward and a jerk to boot, she'll think back and think, "Wow, that took a lot of guts to talk to me. And now we can be friends without all this awkwardness." But no. You missed that opportunity by plotting, and by talking to her roomates about her, when she knows full well you were doing it. (For pete's sake, the kitchen isn't that far away from her bedroom. If you're going to talk about someone, be smart about it, at least!)

It just really makes me angry when people can't just act mature about their interactions with the people around them. Sure, I'm guilty of it at times. We all are. But some things are more serious than others, and toying intentionally with someone's emotions is one of them. Just because you're afraid of how someone will react to the truth doesn't mean the truth isn't the best option. It usually is. So next time you're faced with the prospect of a not very fun conversation, a potentially awkward conversation, stop for a second and think about what would be most beneficial for the person you're talking to. Stop being selfish and do what's right. We're all adults here, so act like it. We can handle it.

Monday, March 30, 2009


What is happiness? Is it working with amazing people in my field? Is it being published (finally) after years of working toward that goal? Is it knowing that I am fast on my way to becoming a successful, accomplished, independent woman in the workforce?

Is it basking in my newfound love of instrumental music? Or basking in my long-standing love of music in general? Or losing myself in books I've devoured over and over, enjoying them just as much the twentieth time as I did the first?

Is happiness knowing I have some specific talents that I love to share? Is it singing in an ensemble in Sacrament meeting, or singing a solo with my guitar at a talent show? Or is it singing at the very top of my lungs to "Wicked," or rocking out to Sherwood, or chilling to Harry Connick, Jr., on my way to my internship in Bluffdale?

How about playing Mario Kart or Tetris and talking trash and knowing it is all in good fun? Is that what happiness is? Is it eating massive amounts of frozen yogurt with fresh fruit and trying to throw my spoon in the light fixture seven times before finally succeeding? Is it playing charades boys against girls and soundly beating the boys?

Maybe happiness is knowing someone is interested in me, having the knowledge that to someone, at least, I am appealing. Maybe it is flirting and poking and teasing someone and having him flirt and poke and tease in response.

So what is sadness? Is it waking up to three inches of snow and a crappy commute on March 30? Is it watching $25 come out of my account every month for a gym membership when I've only worked out once in the past two weeks? Is it not sleeping on a Sunday night because tears were keeping me awake? Is it being on the verge of tears for three days and not really being able to formulate why? Is it wanting a friend to talk to about fears and frustrations and insecurities, but not knowing who, and not even knowing what to say? Is it knowing that I have so, so very much to be grateful for, to be happy about, but not feeling it?

Three questions asked once in Relief Society, and my answers:

Am I happy? Not particularly.
Can I feel the love of my Heavenly Father daily? No.
Am I optimistic about my future? Yes in some aspects, no in many others.

I need to fix something. Unfortunately, the hard part is figuring out what.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

A Monster...

I have always been into music. I love listening to it, singing it, playing it, just being a part of it in any way I can. It's in my blood, I think. As long as I can remember, music has been an essential part of my family. Everyone in my family sings; my dad and my brother play the drums; my dad and my other brother play rock piano (meaning they play chords, they don't read music); my sister and I play the piano; my brother, my mom, and I play the guitar. We've even had a family band, and yes, we did perform. It was awesome. My brothers actually want to start that up again. We'll see if that ever happens.

So pretty much music is a part of me, and has been my whole life. I've been listening to The Beatles my whole life (literally--probably since the womb), so of course I love them. I love a lot of oldies. I also love Sherwood (they're freaking amazing!), Jimmy Eat World, Snow Patrol, Dashboard Confessional, Peggy Lee, Norah Jones, KT Tunstall, Reign of Kindo, and a whole bunch of other stuff that I really don't have to list here. I'm always on the warpath for new music, because I listen to it all the time.

But the one thing I've never been too into is instrumental music. I like some classical, but I just don't listen to it very often. And I've never really been into movie scores. Until recently. Maren and Jonathan have together effectively created a monster. I had gotten some soundtracks from Maren and Jonathan a few months ago, but I didn't really listen to them much. Then I started my new jobs, and the work that I do is such that silence makes it boring, but instrumental makes it much easier to focus and work. So I started listening to the instrumental that I had, and I quickly found that I absolutely love James Newton Howard.

The soundtrack that really spawned this big love is The Village soundtrack. I love this soundtrack so much! It's the kind of music that as soon as it starts, I feel like I'm going to burst with the beauty of it. I don't quite know how to explain it. It's almost a transcendental experience. Is that too strong? I don't know, but the music elicits such emotion from me that I just can't explain it. I have listened to The Village soundtrack so many times recently that I can listen to a song and name the track. That's pretty crazy, seeing as how they all blend together.

I am now thoroughly obsessed with James Newton Howard. I have eight soundtracks that he composed or helped with, and I just ordered a ninth today. There are at least two more that I know I want. I just absolutely love his use of strings, and how the piano blends right in and often takes the melody. It's beautiful. I have discovered that I love strings, and woodwinds. When it comes to soundtracks, I'm not the biggest fan of a lot of brass, like John Williams. He seems to use a lot of brass, and I get tired of it very quickly.

My love of strings also comes through in my love of the October Sky soundtrack, which is not James Newton Howard, surprisingly enough. It's by Mark Isham. I love the strings in this one. This is another soundtrack that gives me that surreal, transcendental feeling. It's amazing the power that music has over me. It can completely transport me. Maybe that's why I love music so much, and why it is such a big part of me. It's amazing the emotion can can evoke in me, with absolutely no effort on my part. But that also means that music can affect me in a bad way. In my Music 202 class a couple years ago, we studied an opera called Wozzek. That music gave me the worst feeling ever. It was physically repelling, I don't know how to explain it.

Anyway...wow, this is a random post. A long random post. A little insight into my loves, right? Right. And if anyone has any suggestions on new bands that I should listen to, or any amazing movie scores or instrumental in general, give me a holler. I'm always on the lookout for new stuff.

Monday, March 23, 2009

"Open Your Eyes" Amendment

After reading a friend's blog, I got to thinking about my "Open Your Eyes" post. And I felt a little guilty. I don't think I gave guys enough credit. I have my excuses, though. 1) I was very frustrated and I needed to vent. 2) It was three o'clock in the morning. They may not mean much, but they're there nonetheless.

First of all, I want to say that I still stand by what I wrote. I'm not particularly frustrated about it right this moment, but I do think that guys go after the wrong girls. But I was thinking about it, and I realized that girls are not any better. We are just as guilty (if not more so) of looking over what's right in front of our faces in favor of the more mysterious, intriguing options that are further away.

I myself am guilty of this. I apparently go after the wrong guys (and here I'm using my own definition) just like these guys I'm complaining about go after the wrong girls. In the past six or seven months, I have been interested in two guys who were not interested in me. And while I did not pursue them in the traditional sense (call me old-fashioned, but I think that's the man's job), I certainly did all I could do to let them know how I felt and to get them to make a move. And now I'm seemingly in the midst of going through this whole scenario again. (Yes, with another guy. Yes, I know I'm a little boy crazy right now. So sue me.)

I guess this is just a memo to myself to evaluate myself and my own actions before I jump to conclusions about others and try to tell them how to act. Maybe next time I'll stop myself before shoving my foot in my mouth.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Blog Post Nummer Zwei

That's right, folks. Tomorrow (Monday, March 23) morning sometime I will have another blog post on the Paper Crafts blog! Probably won't be the most exciting thing in the world, but it's pretty much all I've got to show for the work I've done at my internship so far. But don't worry, I'll totally let you know when one of the issues of the magazine I'm in goes on sale so you'll all be able to go get it and tell everyone you know, "Guess what, I know that girl!" Yeah, that'll be pretty freaking sweet. But for right now, the blog'll have to be good enough.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Open Your Eyes!

There's been a lot of talk in my apartment lately about how the guys we know just don't seem to know how to go after the right girls. This obviously isn't the case all the time, because there are plenty of happily married couples out there who got together because the man pursued the woman. But I think there are often times when guys just look over the girls who would be good for them and look right to the girls who aren't.

I've seen this quite a lot with people I know lately. And it's not even that the guys are going after bad girls, they're just going after the ones who aren't interested. Which basically means that they're the wrong girls. I can think of quite a few examples off the top of my head of boys who go after girls who aren't interested when there is another girl, right in front of him, who is good relationship material. And I'm not necessarily talking about myself here. I have some freaking amazing roommates and friends, and if these guys would just open their eyes and see them, they would find some amazing girlfriends. When it comes to some of these situations, I just want to grab the guy, shake him, and yell, "Can't you see what you're missing? Look at her! She's amazing! And she'd gladly date you if you asked! What is so hard about making a move?!" But alas, that rarely works.

Sometimes I wonder if these guys are afraid to start a relationship with one of these amazing women because they're afraid that she'll be the one they want to keep. Because commitment is scary. I was told today by a guy friend that I am "marriage material." I'm apparently not the kind of girl guys would want to date frivolously. I'm not the fling. I'm the commitment. If that's the case, no wonder guys are fleeing from me. I'm scary. I'm emotionally distant and I'm the commitment. Now that is a recipe for relationship disaster.

But back to my original point. Guys need to stop going after the girls who aren't interested and open their eyes to the girls who might be interested. There are some amazing women out there who won't mess with guys and who won't lead them on. And in my experience, those women are often right in front of your eyes. So, to the guys: Keep your eyes (and your mind) open to the possibility that the women you associate with might just be good for more than simple association. I just read that love is not found like gold in the ground. It is constructed like stainless steel formed by fire and chemistry. And sometimes that fire and chemistry is there with someone that you never expected, until suddenly you realize it's been there all along and you just had to open your eyes and see it.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Blogging about Blogging

So, as I'm sure most of you know, I'm working two jobs right now. The first is an editing position at KLAS Enterprises, and the second is an unpaid internship at Paper Crafts magazine. I really love them both (though sometimes I really hate the commute to Bluffdale for my internship). I have been able to do some really cool things at Paper Crafts. I have had a few writing assignments, including writing articles for issues of the magazine, writing a table of contents, and writing a "Look Ahead" department. Which means that in a few months here, I will be published! Woo hoo!

But one other thing that I've gotten to do, that is more readily apparent than waiting for publication, is write a blog post for the Paper Crafts blog. It was actually kind of stressful because I had to think of something that I, as an intern, could write about. And I figured it out! It's nothing mind blowing or anything, but I'm on the blog, with a picture and everything! How cool is that?

So basically what I'm saying is that on Monday, March 9 ("Magazine Monday" for the blog), you should all go check out the Paper Crafts blog to see yours truly! (I'll link to it again, just in case.) I know that I'm really excited to see it. You all should be too!

Friday, March 6, 2009

A Wee Purchase

So yesterday I decided I wanted to spend my tax return. What did I decide to spend it on? This little beauty right here:

Yup, that's right, I bought a Wii. Pretty crazy. I never thought I'd do that, especially on such a spur of the moment. I'm still reeling a little bit.

So what brought this sudden, severe desire for a Wii? Well, I'm a huge fan of The Beatles (I've been listening to them my whole life--and that's really not an exaggeration), and I also love Rock Band. So what could be better than The Beatles: Rock Band? Not much, in my opinion. I saw this article and I almost died. I could mostly likely sing every single song on this game (which is my favorite thing to do when playing Rock Band, but I need to know the songs, and I would know all The Beatles songs). So I decided to buy the Wii now, while I have the money, and use the summer to save the $250 for The Beatles: Rock Band (instruments included--apparently they look like The Beatles's instruments, which is sweet) so I can buy it when it comes out in September. So basically, I'm spending $600 just for the sake of The Beatles: Rock Band ($250 for the console, $50 for Mario Kart [because I hear it's awesome], $50 for Wii Play [because it comes with a remote], and then the $250 for The Beatles: Rock Band when it comes out). But it's so worth it.

And here's a picture of The Beatles, just for the heck of it. And because they freaking rock, and will continue to rock forever.