Fear of mediocrity

I had my birthday recently. First birthday I’ve ever had away from family – which is weird to consider. I was worried it would be really hard. Birthdays aren’t a huge deal after a certain age, and it’s not like I ever really do anything big to celebrate anymore, but there are small things about them that still matter to me. I believe everyone should have a cake on their birthday. If I have to make one for myself, I will (and have before). I also believe people should be sang to – as long as it isn’t in front of a restaurant or something. I hate those occasions. They’re embarrassing to me and make me feel awkward.
I spent my birthday with Marina, as everyone else was unable to join for one reason or another. It was a bit bittersweet, but overall, it doesn’t matter, because Marina was there, and we had fun. Not to mention I was exhausted after all of my papers being due the day before. She was the absolute best and made it special for me. We had breakfast together (per my request) where we ate pancakes and drank mimosas. She made me a yellow cake with chocolate icing from scratch, the first she has EVER made, and it was amazing. She wrote me a super sweet (and funny) poem on a card, and I’ve put it up on my mantle with my other birthday cards from my family. I cried when I saw that mammaw had signed her name on the card from her and pawpaw. Seeing her brittle handwriting was hard, but I loved that she was able to sign at all. Heck, I’m crying again just thinking about it. My sister had her oldest son sign my birthday card, and I was so happy seeing he is learning to write already. It meant a lot to me. It all did.
Marina and I went to dinner together, just the two of us, nothing fancy. We went to a burger shop I had ordered a veggie burger from before and really liked. I think she had wanted to do it big for me, because birthdays are important to her, too. I think she may have been more disappointed at the people who backed out than I was. Her beau joined us for drinks after dinner, but after being fed a few shots from the bartenders (Marina informed them of my birthday), I was ready to go. I was exhausted and knew I couldn’t handle more, it’s been so long since I’ve drank. When we got home, they fixed the cake for me, put candles on in the shape of an “M” and sang. I gobbled practically the whole thing down, while drunk from our dinner. They really made it great for me, and I’m so grateful for them both.

And so, my birthday has come and gone, and 30 looms ever closer. The nearer I get to 30, the more I have to battle with the standards society has thrown out, dictating directions and achievements to the 30+ woman. I don’t feel ready for anything. Aren’t I supposed to have things figured out now? Have a steady job, a husband, maybe even a family? Shouldn’t I feel like I’m almost 30? Because, I don’t. I don’t feel older, though my body may be starting to look it. I don’t feel like I want to stop going out dancing and drinking in fun clothes. I don’t feel like I want to stop playing video games or watching cartoons. I don’t feel like I want to take out all my piercings, stop wearing trendy clothes, or stop dressing in ways I was never confident enough to before. I don’t feel like I want a husband, or a family, or anything of the sort. I just feel… lost still. I want to travel. That’s the most I know of myself. I want to go across the world, hiking, kayaking, doing all the things I’ve always said “I’ll do that one day” but still have yet to do. I’ve done a lot of this to myself, keeping myself inside and just daydreaming about the life, rather than living it. I’ve hardly explored London, because my time to myself I spend reading alone or watching happy movies. Now I wonder, am I too old to go off hiking across the world? I don’t even know how to hike. I’m not fit, I’m not active. But I want to go. I always have.
I know my personality, for the most part, at least. I’ve always been a dreamer. It has only gotten worse as I’ve gotten older. But I also know that this fantasy idealistic life that I want is just that: fantasy. It’s so hard for me to turn away from, though. I know I have unrealistic expectations about life. I’m not completely lost in my head. And yet…I can’t help it. I remember for one of my printmaking assignments in college, we had to make an etching of an image that was 2×2 inches. We had various topics to illustrate which the professor chose, and one of them was our biggest fear. I drew a quaint house with a fence and a dog, then titled it “fear of mediocrity.” Partly to be contrary (look how cool and different I am, watch me wallow in my angst), but also because it was true. I’ve never really wanted the “every day” life. I’ve never wanted a house with a white picket fence. Mediocrity terrifies me. Our lives are just blinks in the grand scheme of things. I’m certainly not about to make some huge difference in scientific breakthroughs, become famous, make a huge political stand, or whatever. And that’s fine. I doubt I’d handle that life well. But I don’t want to just…be. I want to be more. I don’t know if that explains it adequately enough. And now more than ever, with new debt, with maybe an MA being achieved, with all my friends and family moving into their own families and paths, with getting older… shouldn’t I finally have direction? It isn’t here yet. I’m not sure when it will be.

All I know is that Wednesday I have a presentation. Thursday I have a date. Next week there is a conference I can listen in on some days. July 10th my first chapter of my dissertation is due. Past that… I have no idea.

My dissertation topic is officially “Shifts in Polychrome Decoration on 3D Monuments From the Hellenistic to Roman Period.” I’m going to discuss the materials, application and methods, and the effect of coloured marble statues on the people of the time. I may look some on bronze, too, per Dr. Shaggy’s suggestion. I’m excited, I think. I’m nervous I won’t do well. Dr. Shaggy and I talked it through and came up with a basic structure, so I feel better about it in that respect. I just need to research and somehow accomplish it. I’ve got a month to write my first chapter, revolving around the Hellenistic age. I’m not sure if I’m meant to also write my intro… he only said the chapter. Guess I’ll see how it all goes.

Off subject, but I started to read a story on Wattpad and it really got to me for some reason. It isn’t finished yet, but there are multiple points of view, and one of them is told from an abusive boyfriend’s perspective. He’s awful. He’s mainly mentally and verbally abusive, but has started to become physically abusive. He’s cheating on the female character and just reading his chapter made me feel dirty and sick to my stomach. I know this story is completely fictional, I get that. But stuff like this really happens, and it is eating at me. Maybe this is why I don’t really seek out relationships. I have such trust issues with things like this. I either give nothing, or give everything and smother my partner. I have yet to figure out how to balance a relationship, and I have such insecurities with myself. So when this type of thing happens, it pretty much destroys me. Does everyone cheat? I think so, which is terrible. Is every relationship a secret lie? I feel like it is. I’m going to need to watch a Disney movie to wash the story away.

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But who bought the basil plant?

I’ve been watering a little basil plant which has been sitting in our kitchen window. I thought it was strange Marina bought it, because who eats THAT much basil (at least in our house)? Every time it started to get sad and droopy looking I thought, “poor thing, why isn’t Marina taking care of it?” So I’ve been talking to it and watering it, and it’s flourished quite nicely so far (thanks to my tender, loving care, obviously).
I mentioned the plant to Marina and she said something along the lines of, “when you bought it…” which made me pause. When I bought it? Me? I didn’t buy this plant. She was positive, she had a memory of me coming in the flat with it. Which made me start questioning myself – did I buy this plant and don’t remember? I swear I remembered her bringing it in… what if I’m losing my memory that badly?! We both had a mini freak out where we couldn’t figure out where the hell the plant came from. All I could think is, “did someone break into our flat and leave a plant? Who does that?”
Finally, I thought to ask Marina’s beau. Thank goodness, he had bought it. I guess he likes basil that much. So we figured out that mystery. If this was a Sherlock case it would have been incredibly uneventful.

I received my grade back from my final essay for my Classical Art of the Body course. I have to admit, I was disappointed. I had really thought this essay was going to knock it out of the park. I knew I had taken some risks with my language, I was excessively colloquial at times. But I thought it all fit fairly well. I actually got a point lower than my last one – which I was convinced I failed. This one actually met the word count AND I felt had better arguments and flow. I was baffled. I am glad, I still got a merit grade (whatever that means). I just had really hoped to get higher. I had been proud of something I made for once. C’est la vie. That’s the way the cookie crumbles and all that.

I had my final Greek exam last week. I am 95% sure I failed. This isn’t like my last in class test where I was like “OMG I FAAAAILLED” and I miraculously passed. I did the math, there’s no way I got above a 38, and I needed to get at least a 46. I had really thought I’d be able to do that, too. What makes me mad is that I could have. I knew enough that I really could have done more. But I didn’t go at the exam in a smart way. I didn’t read to see how much each part of the test was worth. So instead of starting with the two hardest parts (each worth 25 and 30 points alone), I started with the parts I knew better, only worth 45. I missed parts on the portions I knew, too. Not leaving blanks, but knowing that my answers weren’t correct. So, I know I didn’t manage full marks on it. It makes me a bit sick. I keep trying to not think on it, but I’m so frustrated with myself. The hardest parts I didn’t even finish 1/3 of the way, it’ll be a miracle if I got even 3 marks on those sections. I had saved them until too late, not watching the clock like I should have.

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It is impossible for me to neatly eat a croissant

How do people manage? This is a legitimate question. Every time I attempt to eat a croissant, it is a massacre. There are flakes of pastry everywhere – places I know it should be impossible for pastry to get in (I will leave you to your imagination for this). It is lucky I don’t like croissants that much, otherwise I’d be distressed over my inability to properly devour them. I’ll just continue to avoid them now.

I met up with Panos at a Greek coffee shop today. He babied me and talked me through my Macedonian weaponry essay. He helped me figure out a structure. And while it is going to be hard as hell, and I have a ton of research to do, I feel better knowing I at least have some sort of path now. That’s the hardest part for me, figuring out where the hell I’m going and making sure I go that way. My essays generally start as miserable ramblings, something I picture being similar to trying to talk to a half-mad crack addict.
He also explained to me how in Greece, lactose intolerance is viewed as mildly absurd. Most women apparently say they want a non-dairy milk, not for their inability to digest regular milk, but because they think it will make them bloat. So asking for something like this in what is essentially an all-Greek London coffee shop makes me weird. I explained to him it was not because I’d bloat. It was because I’d break out something terrible, and then be in the bathroom for awhile after. Which is not always true. I mean, the break out is. But the bathroom part is iffy. Why risk it, though?

I’m seriously going to be a hunchback after this year. I carry so many dang things in my backpack. I’m currently a traveling library with six books and my laptop in tow. So maybe six doesn’t sound like a library, but if this was Beauty and the Beast, Belle would definitely prefer my backpack library over her small town one. This scenario is pre-library gift from the Beast, obviously. I can’t compete with that.

Speaking of Beauty and the Beast, I have been singing it nonstop. It’s my happy music which gets me through traveling. And while I’m sure people around me wish I would stop (poor Marina hears it all the dang time), I just can’t. I need the cheer. It’s gotten to the point where I’m sort of dancing and acting out the songs while walking down the street. It looks odd enough and slightly psycho on its own, but add in my backpack and I look like a crazy, homeless wanderer.

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Clean up, clean up, everybody everywhere!

If you watched Barney, chances are you remember that little ditty.
It’s no secret (at least to those who know me well) that I’m not a big fan of litter. I’m not really sure when it happened, but at some point in my life I started to get mad when I saw people littering. Whenever I read Voyager by Diana Gabaldon (there’s a point to this story segue, stick with me. And this is a slight spoiler if you haven’t read this), there was a part where Claire has gone back in time and takes a break to eat a sandwich she brought with her from present day. She had wrapped it in plastic, and after finishing her sandwich, decides to nonchalantly throw the plastic down, hoping no one notices this strange anachronistic item. Rather than worry on her being found out for her out of time plastic item, I was mad she just threw it out. Granted, it’s not like they had super advanced waste removal in 18th century Scotland. It’s the principle of the matter.
Last year my New Years resolution (I actually made one, which is rare for me) was to lower my carbon footprint. I wanted to try and reduce the amount of plastic and paper I used, I tried to be more cognizant of the amount of water I ran in the sink when doing dishes or washing my face. Sadly, since I’ve been in London that has all but flown out the window. All I tend to do anymore is watch my use of water. I’ve even gone back to *gasp* drinking bottled water. Not because I think it’s any better than tap (I really don’t give a hoot whether or not I’m drinking pure Scottish spring water), but because I haven’t bought a reusable water bottle since I’ve been here. I should probably get on that.
Regardless, there is a point to this litter ramble. There is litter all over London. ALL OVER. It makes me mental, but I don’t do anything about it because…well…it’s dirty. I guess I could carry around a trash bag and gloves with me, but people already look at me sort of strange. And it would take me even longer to get place to place if I stopped to pick up trash (I HAVE EXCUSES AND THEY ARE SEMI LEGITIMATE – DON’T JUDGE ME!).
Yesterday, though, I was waiting for a walking light to turn green when I felt something tapping at my foot. I looked down to see a lone McDonald’s takeaway cup, knocking into me. I felt like I had to pick it up – it was ASKING me to. Before you think I’m crazy, I am aware London is windy so it isn’t like the cup was alive. But I picked it up and carried it with me until I found a trashcan. All because it begged to be properly disposed of. Now it’s just going to end up partially rotting in a huge pile off in a garbage dump. Cheers.

There was absolutely no point to that whole story except to say I threw away a cup. I mean, if you guys aren’t used to my pointless random stories yet… then there’s no hope for you.

A ton of my favourite book series have new books out this month. It’s making me insane, because I can’t read them. I don’t have time with all my essays/exam.
– But wait, Meg, aren’t you wasting time writing this blog entry right now? – Yes. Shush your mouth. I don’t need your negativity around here.
Anyway. It makes me wish that somehow my job in life could be 1. traveling everywhere and writing about how I’m lost, or 2. listening to a ton of audiobooks/reading books and telling people about them/reviewing them. Can that be a real life job where I can pay bills and everything? That would be nice.

Recently, it was a Bank Holiday weekend here. I have no idea what a Bank Holiday is, except that London pretty much completely shuts down. Except for transportation (thank goodness) and pubs (eh). While walking to the tube from the library, I came across a guy casually standing on the steps outside a pub, looking unseeingly at something in front of him. It took me about 2 seconds to realise this guy was probably going to get sick. Sure enough, I see him slowly press his hand to his mouth, as if thoughtful, and then calmly stroll down the steps to the side of the building. I should have looked away, but didn’t. He proceeded to bend over and upchuck, but it was so quiet. And he did it so nonchalantly no one around him even blinked. Then again, maybe Londoners are just used to this sort of thing. All things considered, he was an extremely polite vomiter. Which is more than I can say for myself. I’m a hacker. You’re welcome for the visual.

I went back and read through my Art of the Body essay. That was a mistake, I am not sure why I did it. I did not read it through carefully before I submitted it, which was a mistake. I wanted so badly to quit picking at it and just get it off my plate. Looking back on the essay, there are several obvious grammatical errors. I even spelled “pudenda” wrong in one case – which is terrible, because that’s part of what my essay was on. I’m antsy to get my grade back. I hope I did decently on it despite all my mistakes. I guess I should put all those thoughts towards my unfinished essays… which I can’t remember anything about.

Side note before I go… I am sitting in my library cafe, enjoying the slight noise of the people around me drowned out by my Disney music (I’m cool and an adult, promise). However, I just looked down and found that I have been exposing myself. I had hung my glasses on my shirt collar, but this shirt is a rather flow-y one. The weight of my glasses brought it right down to mid bra. I have no idea how long I’ve been sitting like this. I hope if anyone noticed, they at least thought good things of the exposure. How sad is it that I hope my embarrassment would lead to someone getting their rocks off rather than disgusting them? Talk about low self esteem. My life, ladies and gents.

 

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Cupdate – Day 3

You read that right. I didn’t mistype “update.” Forewarning – this is about lady stuffs. Periods. Uterine lining shedding. In graphic detail. Including, but not limited to, actual depictions of my experiences trying to use one. If uninterested in reading about this (though I’ve no idea why you wouldn’t want to, obviously it’s incredibly exciting) scroll down to the part that says “long hair problems.” You’ve been forewarned.

I’ve decided to try out one of those crazy menstrual cups. I’d like to say “new fangled” but apparently they’ve been around for awhile, so… so much for that. They’re advertised a ton here. I don’t know if they’re as widely used as all the adverts make it seem, but after talking with a friend who has used it before and loved it, I thought I’d give it a go. What have I got to lose? Other than a cup somewhere up inside my lady parts (just kidding! Apparently this can’t happen. I’ve researched to make sure).
Some of the plus sides of these are:
No risk of TSS, and you can leave them in for longer. Perfect for the lazy and forgetful. Of which I am both.
More Earth-friendly, as they are reusable.
Save money on constantly buying tampons and pads.
The downside is there is a bit of a learning curve with these. Okay, maybe a huge learning curve. Maybe I just don’t know anything about vaginas despite having one. But this is complicated. Before you can even use it, you have to boil it fore sterilization, which is weird. I felt awkward standing in my kitchen boiling an object meant to go inside me and hold period blood. I felt like I was using the stovetop in a sacrilegious way. How dare I defile it so!
The cup is also hard as heck to get in correctly. You have to fold it in a weird way to try and make it small enough – and even then it doesn’t get super small. So it is more uncomfortable upon, uh… entry. Additionally, it is difficult to tell if it actually opens correctly after inserting. It is supposed to pop open after it gets in there (somehow, I don’t know how it works. Menstrual magic, maybe). When I put it in today, I don’t think it expanded afterward, so I don’t know what is going on up in there. So far I haven’t leaked, so maybe it all worked out? I thought it did get lost in me in the first day. I almost lost my mind when I went to take it out, only to find that the tab had disappeared entirely. I kept envisioning myself going to an emergency clinic, trying to explain what my problem was. Thankful that, if nothing else, I wasn’t one of those weirdos who had something stuck up there that wasn’t meant to be there. A missing cup is a least explainable. I went to the interwebs (thanks internet, for being a treasure trove/garbage dump of information) to see what to do, and read a lot of posts about not freaking out and how to remove it. I don’t know what happened to make it go away, I’m not sure I want to know what happened. All that matters is that I did get it out in the end.
I keep having weird cramp-y feelings, but I don’t know if they are normal cramps, or cup-related paranoia on my part. Maybe this is the cup getting stuck again.
I will say, there is a perverse satisfaction removing it and seeing how much blood is in there. The little cup even has measurement lines inside. I guess in case someone is extra interested. “Oh, today I shed 15ml of uterine lining! How exciting.” Like a little science experiment.

 

Long hair problems.
Or, welcome to those petrified of periods who skipped ahead.
The amount of hair I shed has gotten out of hand. I don’t even have that much. Today I pulled a hair from my coffee mug, out of the skillet, and off my shirt – all within five minutes of each other. I live in a constant state of awareness that I could, at any point, be about to eat or drink my own hair. I am shocked I don’t hack up hairballs every day. If I ever happen to live with a man, I hope he doesn’t mind finding a small wig throughout the day.

I met with a second new Greek tutor. I’m going to have two separate tutoring sessions a week. I’ll be spending more, but I think it will be worth it in the end. I think I also will like my second tutor better, anyway. She is a bit older, and makes me think of a glamorous, academic, hippie. If that makes sense. I christen thee, “Dr. Hippie” in any potential future posts. Dr. Academic Hippie would be too long, and Dr. AH makes me sound like I’m type-shouting all the time. I do that enough already. Anyway, she seems a bit flighty, but overall super nice. I need to study so I am ready for her tutoring sessions. That has been my project all day today – study Greek. I’ve started looking into commentaries, too; trying to figure out how to write the ones I have due in June. I’d like to write them both and send them off to Dr. Soothingvoice to review. She said she would check drafts as long as we sent them with plenty of time for her to look them over. They’re just so… BORING. Who cares that Plato used purpose clauses all the time?! Or that Xenophon really liked to use comparisons? My grade cares, that’s who. Sigh.

There was a couple canoodling in the British Library today. Actually, canoodling is too cute a word. There was a couple molesting each other and eating face in the British Library today. It was infuriating. Why did it bother me so much? They weren’t talking really loud, or doing anything to me directly – other than being in my direct line of sight. I like to think it isn’t because I’m a bitter, loveless hag… but who knows. Maybe it is that exactly. All I can say is that I got increasingly more and more annoyed as they sat and groped each other while I tried to in vain to read my Greek commentary. I could not concentrate while they were going at it. So many times I almost said, “CAN YOU NOT?!” or, “EXCUSE ME THERE IS A HOTEL RIGHT DOWN THE ROAD” but I held off. Somehow, some way. Maybe they were just exhibitionists and this was their warm up before they got alone and to the real thing. Bleh. I regret thinking that now. Unwanted visuals.

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“Goddesses, whores, wives, and slaves: women in classical antiquity”

This is the title of a book I used in my last essay. Don’t try and tell me history can’t be interesting! I was discussing the title with my oldest sister, and had to wonder if there was a reasoning for the word order. Maybe starting with “whores” or “slaves” would be too risque, but starting with “wives” would be too boring.

Since I last blogged, I received the great news that I passed my second Greek test. A whole 53%! Obviously not my best performance, but I needed a 50% to pass at all, and considering I failed the last and had thought I failed this one, I AM FOR IT! In celebration I ate a whole pizza by myself and later wouldn’t let myself feel fat and guilty for it. No such luck on my feelings on my binge consumption the day after, though.

Claire and I went to the Globe Theatre today to watch Romeo and Juliet. We were beyond excited. I mean, Romeo and Juliet. At the ACTUAL GLOBE THEATRE! Except… it was not Romeo and Juliet. It was… but it wasn’t. The wonder of Shakespeare is that the dear bard’s plays can be redone in almost any setting. They can take place in the past, in the future, on Mars, whatever. Should they, though? Well, I guess that is up to each viewer’s discretion. My opinion is – NO! I assumed this play would be normal style Romeo and Juliet. I assumed wrong. All the characters had clown/mime faces painted on. Fine, I can get past that. Mercutio was played by a woman. Cool, I actually like that take. Romeo had an angsty teenage boy thing going on. You know what, that makes sense, too. Although his weird beatnik-rap moments were a bit meh. Juliet’s mom constantly making weird sexual innuendos and grabbing herself/anyone around her? Not so much. Actually, EVERYONE seemed to make unnecessary sexual motions and innuendos throughout.  It got weird real fast. Mercutio and Benvolio were portrayed as slapstick-esque thugs with bats. Frequently also using said bats to depict penises and make lewd gestures with them. Tybalt was a thug with a bat, too. Though at one point he also seemed to be part dog. Whenever a fight happened, these three scantily-clad dancers (two women, one guy) would come out and dance sexily to techno music off at the sides of the stage. At one point, there was this strange section where the head of Capulet house sang the whole of the YMCA song. It was a good job, but it was still completely out of nowhere. They changed the tragedy of Shakespeare to a comedy. This isn’t a comedy! The acting was good, at least.
Needless to say Claire and I opted to leave at intermission. We went and had drinks and caught up together instead. Much better!

This was a theatre week for me. I went and saw Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead at the Old Vic with Marina on Tuesday. It was amazing. I was lost quite often, as I haven’t read Hamlet in ages (this isn’t Hamlet, but follows alongside the storyline at times and has some of the same characters). However, it was stellar. Joshua McGuire and Daniel Radcliffe were great. Not to mention David Haig. Afterward, there was a signing for Daniel Radcliffe. I am weird and awkward and don’t really need famous people to see me being this way. So I had no interest in seeing Daniel Radcliffe. I mean, yea, cool, I get to see him from afar. But he doesn’t know me, he doesn’t care about me, and he won’t remember me. What’s the use in me getting a photo with him? I can just tell people “Hey, yea, I saw him. It was cool.” and it is just as effective.
Marina and I did ask about seeing the other actors in the play, though. They apparently all exit out the back whilst Daniel has a queue waiting for his signature. We went to wait for them, and they all exited out, surprised to see a whole five people standing around waiting to tell them they did awesome. BECAUSE THEY DID! Everyone did such a great job. I was more excited to get a picture with Josh McGuire (who was the star of the show as far as I’m concerned) than anything else. He was amazing! Despite this, they really all walked out the door as if nothing happened, looking around confused that people were standing by. Slipping silently out the back as if they’re stealing something. Like, I don’t know, the SHOW (ba dum bum chiiiing). Maybe they thought we were trying to mug them. It was infuriating how they had no recognition, but Ratcliffe had an hour long queue waiting for him. He did well. But he wasn’t the only one. I bet he gets annoyed, too. He wants to be recognized for his stage work and everyone is excited to see Harry Potter grown up.

All in all, this week really made me miss acting. Siiiiggggghhh. Would that I were on stage and killing it.

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No cake for you

I had a weird moment in the British Library on Wednesday when attempting to get a treat from the cafe. I decided to forego my imaginary diet I’ve been “about to start” for the past year and get myself a piece of chocolate cake. Absolute last treat for myself before I start my diet, swear (huge guffaw).

Anyway… I was in a busy line and looking forward to the really fudgy-looking chocolate cake. There were only three pieces left, so it MUST be really good. When they asked me what I wanted, I let them know I’d like a coffee and the cake, please and thank you. The woman who took my order gave me a strange look, then turned so her back was to me, and kept trying to poke another worker to get her attention. The woman I ordered from murmured something this other worker, who then looked around, picked up the plate of chocolate cake, touched a piece of it, and walked off with it. No explanation whatsoever. When the first woman rung up my order, she didn’t even mention the cake and whether or not I would want something else. Was there something wrong with these last three pieces of cake? Were they stale from being out too long? Did the workers secretly want them and were saving them for their own consumption? Were they poisoned? Did they think I didn’t look like I needed any more cake (which would be correct, but whatever, let me live my 300 lbs life)? Did I even really ask for it? Maybe this was a figment of my imagination and there was never really cake there at all. The world may never know.

Thankfully, the BL has an upstairs cafe, too. So I went up there to get something to snack on. The girl upstairs was much nicer and suggested I have a brownie. When I was on my last bite of brownie, I happened to look up and make eye contact with a man in a booth nearby. He did not avert his eyes. I mean, I was in mid bite, brownie stuck in my mouth, looking straight in his baby blues… and he didn’t even blink. I wasn’t sure how to react. People always avert their eyes, that’s how life works. It’s an unwritten rule. Strangers do not stare at each other – ESPECIALLY if one is stuffing their face with a delicious baked good and has already been shamed for wanting to eat chocolate cake. I’m just glad I wasn’t eating a banana. Talk about a whole different kind of awkward.

I find it really interesting the kind of things the mind dregs up during the wee hours of the morning (or is this considered the dead of night?). I woke up around 3:45am to pee and have been unable to drift back to sleep. This is due to my brain is doing the traditional, “Hey, time to think about all you have to do and get panicky and anxious,” as well as the ever popular, “Remember every embarrassing and dumb thing you’ve ever done? Let’s brood on that,” thought processes. But tonight it has also thrown in, “Remember what your very first email was? Let’s try to remember for the next half hour,” which is new.
So here I am, trying to remember what my very first email was, while fighting the burning in my eyes that means my body wants to be asleep. I know it was a hotmail account (wasn’t everything in the early 2000s?). I’m also fairly sure it had an “88” at the end of it. I’m not 100%, but I don’t believe I had anything super embarrassing in it per most first emails such as, “cutie_pie88” or “sExYkItTeN_34.” Then again, as I can’t remember it, who knows!

On Thursday, Marina and I spent the day together before she left for Brazil. She had an evening flight, so we decided to go to Green Park to get some souvenirs for her family and get lunch while we were in the area. On the way to Green Park, however, we stopped to get a coffee. I don’t often take drinks onto the tube with me. I don’t like having to hold a lot of things when I already have my huge backpack to contend with. I’m also accident prone. Cue my next story.
I don’t know what it is about the UK, but 6/10 times I get a faulty to-go lid. I noticed that my drink (plain black filter coffee, duh) was dribbling down the side of my cup from beneath the lid and starting to make the coffee sleeve all soggy. I pointed it out to Marina and said how the sleeve was going to crumple into nothing soon and my hands would be on fire. Little did I know, the brim of my coffee cup was also getting soggy. I went to adjust the cup, but the side crumpled in and the top popped off, spilling scalding hot coffee all over my lap. I understand that lady who sued McDonald’s. It definitely was not a pleasant experience. I think my exact words were, “MOTHER OF – IT IS SO HOT, MY THIIIIIGHS, DEAR GOD WHY? IT BURNS!” Marina tried to quickly dig through her purse for a napkin, but she only had a receipt, which she offered to me because she’s a good friend. I thanked her, but turned down her offer. The burning was starting to fade at that point, and I could only imagine how much sillier I would look dabbing myself uselessly with a receipt.
On the plus side, I was wearing black pants. So even though my entire crotch/lap area was wet, you couldn’t tell. Didn’t look like I had an accident or anything.
On the other plus side, my thighs are big enough that no coffee got anywhere on the ground or seat. The thunder twins set up an effective blockade that took the full blast, saving the next person from sitting in an awkward, inexplicable wet area.
On the other, OTHER plus side, people in London don’t interact with each other on the tube, so no one seemed to have noticed. I could have fallen to the ground writhing in boiling coffee, and they would have happily kept their gazes averted. No need to feel embarrassed!

I was asked to attempt a drawing for Marina’s beau’s band to use on Spotify for a single they have coming out. I’m nervous and excited. I really WANT to do this, but I’m not sure how well I could do it. Or how much time I have to do it… Art stuff has always made me self-conscious, and a time crunch doesn’t make it any better. Maybe I’ll skip out on it.

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