Category Archives: boats

If You Really Want Some Hot Water, I Can Help You Find It

The title of this post has nothing to do with what’s going to be in the post. But Catch Hell Blues was my song today. Once I’m in the White Stripes mood, you can’t take me out of it. And that song is amazing. Don’t go looking for trouble if you’re not prepared to deal with the consequences.

And now that that’s out of the way…

Disclaimer: This post is going to be disjointed lily pads of nothing consequential. Even more fragmented/incoherent then usual. Several abrupt changes in topic. And there are a lot of sports-related sentiments in capital letters so if that kind of sports-related intensity doesn’t interest you, just skip this one. Or read up until “Selection Sunday…”

I’m basically turning into a mermaid. Or a piece of seaweed. And I love it. Big bodies of water and I were always meant to be together. I went to the beach again on Wednesday. I held a pufffed up puffer fish and saw some washed up jellies and a 100% intact dead crab. There was also a huge buoy that came in during a storm. It was at least 20 feet tall (but it’s hard to saw exactly how big it was since it was kind of on it’s side and I’m a bad guestimator of height) and like 7 feet wide at the floaty bottom. There were barnacles on it.  The beach is my curiosity dream come true. I also laid in the sunshine obviously. My skin is changing. My hair is changing. I feel rough and salty and it’s awesome. The only downside is the fact that my freckles are emerging in full force and my hair is getting super light. At this rate, I’m going to be strawberry blonde by April and that sucks. I definitely prefer the darker red. #gingerproblems

Yes, I just hashtagged in a blog. Deal with it.

Laying on the beach just makes me want to be a housewife which is terrifying because not once have I ever thought that’s appealing before. But it’s so blissful that I want nothing other than to have zero responsibilities and hours of selfish free time to bask in the sun on the sand. And go shopping. I went to the Tanger Outlets in Foley today. Good God… the shopping down here is better too. Everything is magic. I could have definitely cleaned up at J. Crew and Ann Taylor and then bought half the stuff in every other store. I love spring. I WANT ALL THE DRESSES. I want to be a housewife so that my job can be to do laundry and look pretty. I’d get to dress up every day. And my husband would be rich so we’d have a boat and take it out every weekend and live happily ever after. And all the money we didn’t spend on the boat and clothes, we’d give to people who need it. I’d make sure we were a very philanthropic family.

There would probably be a lot of self-loathing by like month four of this. I’m not sure I could handle actually being a housewife (but I would love to be able to give money away like it was no big deal). I like to accomplish things. And not be dependent on anyone. I can buy my own damn boat someday. The good thing about nursing is that my income will be awesome enough to enable my clothing whims and my schedule will enable my beach whims. I fear for my self-control.

Today, however, my self-control was still intact and the only thing I bought at J. Crew was a pair of awesome light seafoam-ish green shorts. They spoke to my new mermaid self and I had to have them. I kind of needed them for practical reasons as well since it’s shorts weather in Mobile like 10 months a year.

Today I also got around to finishing Life of Pi and damn, did that twist ending suck or what?! I didn’t even know it was going to have a twist ending so I was totally caught off guard. And I take back what I said about how it makes me question my agnosticism. It actually reaffirmed it at the end. That’s all I can say without giving too much away and ruining your enjoyment of it if you haven’t read it yet and are going to in the future.

My new favorite food item for consumption day and night is celery with peanut butter and raisins. Your mom probably called it “ants on a log” when you were a kid. I’m trying to eat better since taking Diet Therapy pretty much proved that a bad diet is the downfall of all people. All kinds of diseases and conditions have a nutritional component. And I’m not even talking about the obesity/hypertension related ones. Even if you’re not hypertensive and/or obese and your calories per day are normal and you’re working out regularly, deficiencies in minerals and vitamins are pretty damn terrible by itself. You can come down with all kinds of conditions when your body doesn’t have what it needs. So now I’m making an effort to eat better. Before, I felt that as long as I wasn’t overweight and my hair wasn’t falling out and my skin wasn’t yellow, I was doing ok. Not the case. I had to do a diet analysis on myself and I was basically lacking in almost all vitamins and minerals and then we had to learn about all the ways a poor diet can increase your risk for EVERYTHING. I didn’t really have bad excesses of anything (not even saturated fat or sodium) but I was deficient in most things. It’s truly hard to eat well when you’re on a super limited income. But I’m trying. Hence the incorporation of celery and raisins, among other things, into my diet. Cheap and nutritionally instrumental. Raisins are kind of gross if you just eat them plain. Celery is too. But if you put them together with peanut butter, it’s BLISS IN YOUR MOUTH. The celery is crunchy, the raisins are chewy and add a subtle sweetness, and the peanut butter is smooth and peanut buttery.

Sunday is Selection Sunday. March Madness > Christmas. College basketball is truly my favorite sport to watch. I might have previously said that soccer was but if I did, I’m telling you now that it was a lie. 7 years ago, when I gave my dad the list of colleges I applied to, he was like “All of these schools have good basketball programs.” Yep. Hell yes they did because that was super important to my 17 year old self. My love for college basketball is deeper than the Mariana Trench. Yesterday, I reevaluated my antenna set-up  to make sure that nothing would inhibit my ability to enjoy the games during those brief hours when I’m not in class or psych clinical. And now that Pitt is most likely going to be playing in the NIT (I know… what?!?), I can enjoy the Madness like I used to and not be stressed out about it. I’m not saying I’m happy that Pitt isn’t going to be in the NCAA Tournament. But it’s nice that I know they can’t outright disappoint me again like they do every year. They’re always ranked relatively high. And always lose really early. Their level of underperformance in the tournament has to be some kind of record. Like if you figured out the average ratio of seed position versus round the team lost in, Pitt would be #1. By far. No other team would even be close. This year, since their whole season has been OUTRAGEOUSLY DISAPPOINTING, I can’t even care anymore and I have a new peace about March Madness. I guess I’ll go back to rooting for UNC like I used to. No, I’m not a bandwagon fan. In my first basketball league way way way back in the day when I was particularly susceptible to influence (as all children are), all the teams were named after good college teams. And I was on the Tar Heels. It stuck with me and I started rooting for them in real life. And then got out of control in high school. I had a UNC comforter. Don’t judge. It’s taken me many years to be able to publicly admit that.

Anyway, the amazing thing about college basketball is that anything can happen. Underdogs take down infallible teams all the time. And in terms of even making it to the tournament, no team is ever really guaranteed that at the beginning of the season. Look at Pitt this year. They’re ALWAYS “good” but didn’t make it this time.  Better example: in 201o, the defending champs (North Carolina) didn’t even make it. Granted, that actually really makes a lot of sense because they lost all the experienced starters that helped them win the year before but still… UNC almost always has a good team. When they’re in the NIT, it’s always a “what?!” kind of feeling.

And buzzer beaters are absolutely without a doubt the #1 best thing about sports. Fuck grand slams at the bottom of the ninth and completed Hail Marys and all that other epic sports stuff. To see a last ditch three pointer go in at the last second gives you a feeling that no other sports moment can. The energy is different. I can’t explain it. I guess at first you’re happy that he got the shot off then you’re in agonizing anticipation after the release when you watch it in the air and then you see it go in and then YOUR SOUL SCREAMS WITH JOY. Or in the opposite circumstance you’re like “Oh, SHIT… he got the shot off” then agonizing anticipation when it’s in the air then you feel VIOLENT PAIN when it goes in. I fall off my couch from happiness and pain at least 20 times during the tournament. I collapse on the floor at least 5 times.

I feel like there’s more heartbreak in the NCAA Tournament than most sports have. Penn State losing to Temple last year will always be one of the more tragically painful sports-related moments of my life. It was a team of five seniors, one of them being Talor Battle who is one of the absolute best players PSU has ever had. And because of these factors, Penn State made the tournament for the first time in who knows how long. It just felt like it was meant to be and I was so pumped for the tournament. And then Jeff Brooks got hurt during the Temple game and everything changed. I can still physically sense the sinking feeling I had in my stomach in that moment when he got hurt. And when that Temple guy sank the shot at the end, I lost my will to live. This game falls into the “last second shot –> violent pain” category. It was especially hard because Battle had just unbelievably tied it up seconds before that which had made me feel nothing but elation. These moments are obviously burned into my brain forever. College basketball makes you flip emotions just as fast as the teams switch possession.

emotional rollercoaster (noun): Liz’s internal state during every NCAA Tournament game

And now Penn State fans and those five seniors and their coaches forever have to live with the “what if?” of Brooks’ injury. Ugh. Sports.

The NBA is never this epic. I’m not sure why I hate watching NBA games if I love college basketball so much because it’s technically the same sport. I think because they have less chaos moments because the players are professionals and therefore better. I love the chaos of college basketball. It’s fast paced too so you’re basically super into it the whole time. I remember regular season games in the Zoo when we didn’t sit down for even a second when the clock was running.

One last thing about basketball… what the hell is up with Baylor’s uniforms? BLECK. I went out to lunch with some people yesterday and the game was on and now I want Baylor to lose just because their uniforms are obnoxious.

And now on to soccer briefly. Messi scored FIVE GOALS IN ONE GAME on Wednesday. Outrageous. He’s now the first player to score five goals in one game in the Champions League. Here they are. Watch them.

How is Messi so good? It’s magic. I feel bewitched every time I see him play.

And now onto hockey. Sidney Crosby HAS BEEN CLEARED FOR CONTACT. But I’m not getting my hopes up. There’s been a lot of that in the last year and the hopes were always crushed by some new circumstance. Until he’s back playing regularly in games, I can’t relax.

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Stress About America, Not Marriage

So… State of the Union drinking game… I got a little too drunk. Thank goodness we didn’t have class today. Before you judge me, keep in mind that the outlook has been kind of bleak as of late. Empty promises and false hope all across the board. It’s a difficult thing to stomach without significant intoxication.

The weird thing about my drunk habits is that I always overdress for bedtime. On a sober night, I just sleep in undies and a t-shirt. After a drunk night, I wake up wearing every article of clothing I own. This morning, I got out of bed wearing my Steelers sweats, an IUP t-shirt, and a Penn State hoodie. My intoxicated dressing habits indicate that I’m subconsciously missing the homeland A LOT.

Speaking of home…

‘Cause it’s a long and rugged road
And we don’t know where it’s headed
But we know it’s gonna get us where we’re going
And when we find what we’re looking for
We’ll drop these bags and search no more
‘Cause it’s gonna feel like heaven when we’re home
– The Wailin’ Jennys

Relevant (from 10/2/11): Maybe I need to go everywhere not because I’m a transient non-settler but because I actually believe in home and settling more than anything so I’m desperately searching for exactly the right place?

And the truth is I’ve been dreaming of some tired tranquil place
Where the weather won’t get trapped inside my bones
And if all these years of searching, I find one sympathetic face
Then it’s there I’ll plant these seeds and make my home
– June on the West Coast, Bright Eyes

Yep. More than three months later, I can conclude that the previous sentiment was, in fact, an accurate assessment.

This is also why I have real problems with even getting to the point of considering a relationship with a guy. I mean, some of that does have to do with the Matt disaster, but even before him, I refused to date anyone seriously because I just didn’t like any of them enough. I’m picky, but it’s because I believe in passionate living way too much. And I’m not going to settle down in a place or with a person until I know it’s absolutely worthwhile… in that it has the potential to be exactly right.

A huge part of me knows that home is Pittsburgh because I guess that’s my ultimate goal but there’s obviously something else that’s pulling me away from Pittsburgh and making me need to explore everything. Maybe it’s so I know, with certainty, that Pittsburgh is the place? Maybe I have to know for certain that what I’m looking for isn’t someplace else and that it was in Pittsburgh the whole time. Or I guess the other possibility is that it isn’t Pittsburgh and that’s the reason I left. Which makes me sad because I want it to be Pittsburgh. But obviously, the reason I didn’t stay is because my soul is in search of something else. Or maybe Pittsburgh is the place but I’m subconsciously in search of the person to establish a sense of home with. I don’t know. All I know is that I’m here in Mobile right now. And probably half starting over in New Orleans next January. And then going from there.

It’s hard to feel panicked about anything when you don’t even know what it is that you’re looking for.

And the fact that girls are starting to become afraid of the fact that they might end up as a lonely crazy cat lady with a tedious life is insanity to me. First of all, I would never let my life become lonely because I inherently just stumble across good people who become my lifelong friends. Secondly, I’m never going to have cats. I generally hate them. I might be a crazy dog lady, I guess. That doesn’t even sound so bad though. Thirdly, tedious? Yeah, that’s not gonna happen either. I don’t know how it’s possible to feel like life is uneventful when there’s so much to do and see. And there are always ways you can channel your boredom into helping other people also.

So, I guess even in the worst case scenario of perpetually being single until I die, life still seems pretty damn awesome. Still getting a boat no matter what happens. And having the time and resources and lack of obligations to allow me to actually travel the world regularly seems awesome too. Life is what you make of it. Don’t be stressing about how you feel like you’re not going to get what you want. Make it what you want, no matter what the situation is.

Plus, I feel like all guys our age are just developmentally behind in some way. They don’t have the same values or motivation. I’m tired of babysitting. But I’m not ready to date 30 year olds either. Maybe in another 3-4 years I will be. We’ll see what happens.

So, all that stress that’s out there… I just don’t feel it or understand it. I really really have no idea why everyone else is FREAKING OUT about this. Let’s all just relax, ladies. Don’t define yourself by the existence of men in your life. Live it up. That’s what our twenties were for. Honestly, once you have that first kid, your little black dresses will never look the same, if you can even fit back into them at all. And you won’t have time to go out and wear them either. I’m really seeing no perks of being married right now. It all seems like one big disadvantage to me. Date men, yes. Marry them, no. Freak out about not being married, DEFINITELY NOT.

Various and Sunday

Sunday is the best day of the week. I’m a productivity monster. Avett Brothers (and similar things) all afternoon.

Although, I’m kind of wishing I’d just gone to nursing school in Pittsburgh because going to nursing school while living in Mobile basically requires every ounce of self-discipline I have. Thank goodness I was a ballerina for so long. Otherwise, this wouldn’t be possible. It’s summer all the time here.

I went to brunch with a super cute guy and then he was going fishing afterwards and he invited me and I couldn’t go because I have an exam tomorrow and need to study all day. And saying no to that was THE MOST DIFFICULT THING I’VE EVER DONE. Brunch then fishing. Sounds like the best damn Sunday ever.

Every morning, I wake up and natural sunshine light is flooding my bedroom because I have super high ceilings and tons of huge windows and I just want to lay there happily ever after instead of getting up to go sit in a classroom for 7 hours.

And I know that this is exactly what I want and what I’ve worked toward for the last 1.5 years, so I know I just have to suck it up and get it done. But damn. When the alternatives to studying are kayaking and fishing and running on amazing cross-country trails and biking and hanging out on the pier and chilling on a boat and napping outside on the patio (in January?!) and going to New Orleans and going to Mississippi and eating crab cakes and digging up lily pads for your friend’s pond, your body goes into like “no studying ever” shock.

It’s the simplest and most relaxing existence ever. I should have moved to Alabama six years ago. I probably would have failed college though. The only reason I’m not failing nursing school is because I don’t have all those other college distractions (like excessive drinking, co-ed mingling, sporting events, volunteer activities, etc.) on top of the Gulf Coast distractions.

Another issue with studying is that my apartment has 10 billion places to fall asleep. I have a 7 foot couch, a 6 foot couch, a love seat, a huge comfy chair, a papasan chair, and patio furniture. They’re all amazing places to study but also have incredible potential to knock you out. And my office is the sunshiniest part of the apartment so of course I never get anything done in there. I’ve decided against getting a hammock. It would cripple my work ethic.

This like being in love with with someone for the first time (which I think I mentioned at some point a few days ago). I’m smiley and distracted and fluttery and all of that all at once every day. I’m so in love with life that I can’t get anything done most of the time.

11 more months. Then I’ll be living in New Orleans and working 12 hour shifts just 3-4 days a week and every single second that I’m not working will be spent on all the activities I have to skip right now.

Here’s a rundown of happy Sunday songs and videos. You’ll smile and laugh, I promise.

Long Time Gone by Tim O’Brien and Darrell Scott
Prison Bones by Matt the Electrician
(Turn Out The Lights And) Love Me Tonight by The Tennessee Boltsmokers

Civil Disservice from the Daily Show a few days ago

Every Night I Thow You Out, Leave You Stranded On The Boulevard

First and foremost… WHAT THE HELL, STILLERS? Injuries are killer. I so badly wanted to see them crush Tim Tebow. That last TD was outrageous. Maybe he really freaking is Jesus but goodness, I hope not. All season, the whole Tebow Time thing  has been in my top 5 most hated things in this world. Sigh… next year. I hate those unsuccessful seasons where I feel what fans of other teams must feel every year and it’s terrible. We did way more with severe deficits due to injury than any other team could have. I still feel at least somewhat proud of that even if we’re not getting another Superbowl win.

Moving on… I finally have internet at my apartment so consider this to be the first of more regular posts. Maybe. The exams start on Thursday and don’t stop for weeks so we’ll see what actually happens in terms of blogging. I severely need to get my ass in study gear. Going to school in vacationland is actually way more difficult than I could have imagined. I just end up going outside instead of studying. Because a “this day is way too nice to waste it inside” kind of day in Pittsburgh is actually almost every day here. And I really don’t think I’ll ever get tired of going outside so it might become a huge problem which will require me to exert the strongest self-discipline I can muster. On Saturday, it was outrageously warm and I spent a solid amount of time on my bike. I was also uncomfortably hot while walking through the Winn Dixie parking lot from my car to the door. I cannot begin to tell you how weird it is to feel uncomfortably warm in January when you’re wearing a short-sleeved shirt and sandals.

In some ways, however, the vacationland aspect actually makes learning/school easier. Basically, the nursing building in Fairhope is a 10 minute walk from the bay. So, I  obviously go down there every day for our 12-1 break because I can’t stay away and it’s super zen and I get outrageously relaxed and so then powering through the afternoon is actually relatively easy. Today, I saw the first sailboat since I’ve been here which was INCREDIBLE and I wanted to be on it so badly. Sailboating around the bay would be a dream come true. I can’t wait ’til spring/summer when there are a million out there. Although, there’s something weirdly rewarding (in a meta way or something) about just a lone sailboat out on the bay in January. Maybe it’s rewarding in an existential way. I’ll get back to you on that after I decide which it is. Maybe it’s both.

And honestly, classes are outrageously fascinating so I’m sure that I’ll get some kind of routine down where studying and life enjoyment are perfectly balanced.

I like being busy. Things like this happen during periods like last winter when I was living at home with my parents while taking Microbio and working at the local pizza place and generally being bored as hell. I think it’s pretty safe to say that we all benefit from my preoccupation with legitimate stuff like school because ridiculous Liz is difficult to handle sometimes. The absence of legitimate pursuits in my life slowly becomes disastrous.

Although, sometimes I force legitimacy to happen during these periods and so not everything’s always a waste. For example, during that same time period last winter, I also crafted the most perfect Ryan Adams roadtrip mix for shorter journeys (like the 1 – 1.5 hour range). I can’t remember the exact length or song list but I’ll pull it up on my iPod and post it sometime soon so you can recreate it and thereby satisfy the Ryan Adams craving that I know you all have right now.

This song is on it somewhere and I’m mentioning it because today was a Hallelujah loop kind of a day and I listened to it on repeat. I love that “throw you out” line. It makes me happy (maybe sadistically) every damn time.

Finally, tonight is the LSU/Alabama championship game which will be my first SEC football experience while actually physically residing in the south and it’s a totally different experience, I promise. People are flipping out. I’m watching it with Auburn fans… and Alabama always beats Penn State… so…

Geaux Tigers!

Happily Ever After

I still don’t have internet. This is just a brief post because I’m overflowing with joy. It’s not organized in any sense. And there are no paragraphs. I had a lot of coffee so I can power through some studying. But I’m blogging instead. Someone give me a crash course in efficient time management. I will forever be a procrastinator. But a procrastinator who gets straight As. So I guess it doesn’t matter how I get it done as long as I do it.

Mobile and the surrounding area is sunshiny adventure vacationland.

Class is a 30 minute drive from my apartment and it’s sheer happiness the whole way. I will never get sick of driving over the bay. And the sunsets are incredible. I’ve made my first real friend. We carpool to class and she’s awesome. She’s originally from Mobile. She loves the Avett Brothers. She’s a totally outdoorsy person (but seriously, almost everyone down here is). Her parents live on a river. Her dad took us out to lunch yesterday. We ate the most amazing BBQ in this dive-y place where they gave you soda in a canning jar. We listen to Railroad Earth on the way to school. I never had heard anything by them before this but now I’m in love. She and her husband drove to upstate New York once to see them live. Even though they play around here all the time. That’s how good the music is. I saw an armadillo cross the road. I learned that alligators are afraid of people so if you see one while you’re kayaking, they usually just swim away. Mating season in the spring can be a little dicey though. Apparently they’re all over then and kinda aggressive. And fences are put up on the causeway to keep them from getting on the road. I think I might be more afraid of alligators than hurricanes but I can’t wait ’til I see one. If we get out of class early enough, we see trucks and SUVs parked all along the road and there’s a ton of fishing guys sitting on coolers and out in their boats. Main campus has amazing cross country running trails and ponds with lily pads that apparently bloom like crazy in the spring  (which I can’t wait for because it’s obviously gonna be gorgeous). I’m definitely going back up there on Saturday. Cross country running is my #1 true love. There’s a sign near the trail that says “Beware of alligators and snakes” and there are spiders on trees that are as big as your hand. I might die (from animals or happiness). I feel like I’m in the jungle or a very very foreign land. Everything is flat so I can easily bike a ton of miles each day and there’s no struggle with hills. Main campus also has a super disc golf course. My classes are awesome and intense. I’m going to love being a nurse. But 3 grad level classes over the course of 5 weeks is difficult. Health Assessment is easy. Pathophysiology and Pharmacology require a ton of studying. My pharm book is 1700 pages. All that stuff has to be read/learned/memorized by whenever the class ends in February. Rachel (my new carpooling BFF) said that her husband just applied for a job at an outdoor/fishing equipment store where one of the requirements was that you have to know how to tie flies. The fact that a job with such requirements exists is amazingly awesome to me. There are also weirdly a lot of guys around here who know how to fly planes, whether it’s as a result of regular flight school or from being in the Air Force (I don’t care too much for military guys because I kind of disagree with American foreign policy in general, but Air Force men are hot/badass). I’m going to be outside all the time with a million new outdoorsy friends and hot/badass gentlemanly men and maybe never actually go back to Pittsburgh. Some stupid stuff went down right before I left anyway. Which I guess I’ll go into detail about at some point when I’m feeling less happy.

Although, I do wish I was at Belve’s tonight. I want the things I love about Pittsburgh and the things I love about Mobile to be in the same place. Starbucks is playing this song right now: Age of Consent. One of my favorite 80s night staples for sure.

Messages

I love mom e-mails. They kind of always sound a little ridiculous. I don’t know what it is. I’ve been trying analyze this for years. Just their choice of words and/or tone is weird maybe. They always sound different from e-mails you get from anyone else. Case in point, the last one my mom sent to me:

Oh my dear!  I am so happy that your wishes are coming true as you head to Alabama. We will miss you greatly but know that this is what you want to do and we are behind you all the way! The next 2 months will be filled with excitement and anticipation! Hope your weekend was fun and that THING 1 and 2 were a hit!

Mom, why do you do stuff like randomly capitalize the word “thing?”

I also love this song: Messages by Xavier Rudd

Oh, the lyrics. They really make me cry life tears 50% of the time I listen to the album. It’s a good Sunday night album.

So, hold nice and close
Once you get to your soul
So that when it is cold
You won’t feel so alone
‘Cause the roads that you take
May just crack and break
With the changes you will confront

With each gift that you share
You may heal and repair
With each choice you make
You may help someone’s day
Well, I know you are strong
May your journey be long
And now I wish you the best of luck
Well, I know you are strong
May your journey be long
And now I wish you the best of luck

Also, please care about the environment. Thanks.

I’m so teary lately anyway. The outrageousness of Halloweekend has made me realize how much I’m going to miss everyone for real. Like there have been a few times when I’ve just looked around at my friends doing what we always do and I just feel sadness and the ache of missing them already. The journey of life is bittersweet.

What is that feeling when you’re driving away from people and they recede on the plain till you see their specks dispersing? — it’s the too-huge world vaulting us, and it’s good-by. But we lean forward to the next crazy venture beneath the skies.
– Jack Kerouac, On The Road

Even though I love everyone to death, Halloweekend has been outrageously crazy and I’m kind of ready to get off this ride. Excerpt from one of my drunk tweets:

Oh Lord. Halloweekend. We are all going to die.

At Mike’s party on Friday night, we crossed the event horizon of insanity/debauchery never to return apparently. I thought I was too hungover to drink last night. I was wrong. Yes, I was still mad hungover and didn’t really want to drink but it happened. I thought we had all pulled ourselves together by the time we met up again at my house last night. Not true. Two parties with a bar adventure in between and we were all back to Friday night where the craziest shit was going down. At least Desi and I are naturally synched up so that only one of us is obliterated at a time and we take care of each other. Thank God, because if it weren’t this way, we’d be completely non-functioning wastes of life.

There’s been drama, there’s been fun, there’s been the surrealness of being sandwiched between Boba Fett and a dude dressed like a sexy woman while you back that ass up as the stereo blasts some Juvenile.

I mean, we went hard. It’s not even over yet. There’s still a small gathering happening at the Cage tomorrow night. Honestly, I can never get enough Halloween though. It’s truly one of the best holidays.

Apparently, Matt referred to me as “the whore in the other room” on Friday night however. That was nice of him. Glad to see he’s healthily/maturely moving on three months later. I know it shouldn’t have broken my heart that that’s how he thinks of me because I’m more or less over it in every way but it still sucks to know that there’s so much hate directed toward me from someone I used to love and who used to supposedly love me. I also know it’s not true at all. I was only ever the most monogamous/faithful/loyal/dedicated/loving/non-slutty girlfriend a person can have. It still stung really bad to know that he called me that and I guess I’ll never know why.

I think that guys will never really understand the level of disaster the situation with Matt was and I can never really fully throw out a disclaimer about why I’m so hostile towards them. I don’t believe in nice guys because my ex is the type of person to call you a whore three months after you broke up when it was entirely his fault and semi-unfaithfulness that caused you to end it.

I guess that’s essentially it. It’s hard to believe that a nice/decent/good guy is actually that when the guy you thought was that nice/decent/good guy in reality is a shady bastard who calls you a whore and that interferes with my assessment of all men.

I’m definitely ready to get out of here. Heartwrenching or not, it’s time to move on.

I still haven’t come to terms with the fact that I’m going to be living on Mobile Bay and basically the Gulf of Mexico. My connection with bodies of water is one of the most solid/consistent things in my life. My whole body is itching to go. The Gulf of Mexico and I have some kind of magnetism now. Water is also helping me feel less upset about leaving and the inevitable disconnection that comes with long-distance friendships. But when I think about the fact that ultimately New Orleans is my goal and that we’ll all be connected someday by Ohio and Mississippi Rivers, I feel more at ease about it. I like the idea of being able to look at the Mississippi River water and knowing that some of that came from Pittsburgh. And even farther up, some of it came from Potter county where my mom works so I’m connected to everyone that’s important.

I’m actually crazy. This is proof. A sane person would feel connected to people in 2011 because we have cell phones and the internet. A crazy person gets all 1894 about it. Pittsburgh is only a steamboat trip away!

This blurb from Wiki is cool:

The use of steamboats on major US rivers soon followed Fulton’s success. In 1811 the first in a continuous (still in commercial passenger operation as of 2007) line of river steamboats left the dock at Pittsburgh to steam down the Ohio River to the Mississippi and on to New Orleans.

I was obsessed with steamboat history for awhile. You can blame alt-country for that, I’m sure. But yeah, got books out of the library about it and everything. I was a steamboat expert for two weeks.

I also love houseboats. And speed boats. And tug boats. And fishing boats. And life boats. And pontoon boats. And kayaks. And canoes. And gondolas. And all other boats. Those are just the first ones that come to mind.

But sailboats most of all. Intense love for sailboats. My ancestors must have been pirates or vikings or fish or something. I’m most at peace on/in the water. It’s the most universal thing ever when you think about it. First of all, the earth is 70% water. Secondly, the water comes from everywhere and goes everywhere via the evaporation and rain cycle. And the molecules get all broken up then put back together. The atoms just move all over. I also like that hydrogen bonds are super weak unless there are a lot of hydrogen bonds going on from a lot of molecules being together. That’s so universal. One person alone is nothing. But a million people together is unbreakable. We need each other. Together, we have a high specific heat.

Putting the physics/chemistry aside (why am I such a nerd and only think in terms of science?), the water is also carried all over via gravity and waves and currents. It’s humbling to think about the power and magnitude of it but also comforting because of the connection to all things that it makes me feel.

I definitely cry my face off at the end of Big Fish every time. And kind of all the way through. The “I was drying out” line in the bathtub scene makes my heart explode. It’s not even really 100% sadness tears because of the death thing. Mostly life tears actually. Sometimes I wonder if I’m the only person who loves the mix of good/bad in life so intensely that they cry about it. Not really happy or sad tears. Just love/existence/humanity tears.

Anyway, it’s obviously my favorite movie. And probably influenced me way too much when I was considering applying to nursing school in Alabama. I hope someone proposes to me someday by fake catching a catfish with an engagement ring (more proof that I’m Imaginationland crazy). Or actually catching a catfish with an engagement ring. That seems risky though. He could just pretend.

And take me to the river when I die. Preferably, I would like to die in the river surrounded by all the people I’ve ever known but that’s obviously way too whimsical to be real life and only happens at the end of Big Fish and not even really happens. It just happens in the story that Billy Crudup tells to Albert Finney while he dies in the hospital. Y’all can just cremate me and toss me in the river with some kind of short ceremonial celebration of life. Be drinking whiskey too, of course.

Wow, I think I just planned my funeral. These blogs get out of control. I go in with no organization or idea about what I’m going to write whatsoever and this is what comes out.

Relevant: If I Die Young by The Band Perry

I Just Want You Near Me Like You Are Now For Good

That’s a sweet sentiment. I love love love Tinfoil Hats.

It makes me hopeful about life. It makes me not want to settle. I can’t settle again. It’s better to be alone than settle for something that’s not everything you want.

Relatedly, my need to get out of this city and/or maybe all cities is overwhelming. I really think it has to do partially with the fact that I could go to the middle of Wyoming where no one lives and actually scream my face off for 10 minutes and no one would know. But also, more to do with the fact that after shutting down crucial parts of myself to be in a relationship with Matt, the repressed interests and thoughts and feelings are now coming out so uncontrollably fast and hard that I don’t know how to keep it in check.

We seriously argued about the stupidest stuff that really was just a reflection of us being totally different people with completely different interests and backgrounds.  In order to prevent the arguing, I had to ignore crucial parts of myself and not act certain ways and modify my interests. Because of this, I know exactly what I do and do not want in a guy. So I can really only be happy at this point. I feel like I dodged some kind of bullet. Like maybe I got out just in time before that point where I would get too far in. Like I was dangerously close to the event horizon of a black hole and almost never came out again.

And now I’m kind of living like someone who almost died. I know that sounds super dramatic but that’s how I feel sometimes. It was nearly the death of myself. And that’s maybe almost scarier than dying for real. When you die for real, you just cease to exist. When your true self dies, you have to live as someone else for the rest of your days and time drags on and you’re never really happy/fulfilled.

I’m 50% country and 50% city. It’s a dead even split. I grew up in the country so I need the wilderness down to the very core of my being. I kind of freak out in the city. I don’t know what to do with myself and get easily upset by certain things. Like smelling truck fumes when I’m running and not being able to see the stars when I want to. But then again, I know how much it sucks to live in a small town and what it’s like to want to experience new things and meet new people. So when I’m back in that small town for an extended period of time, I freak out then too. Essentially, I’m always only half content. 50% bliss, 50% freaking out. It’s really a miserable existence sometimes. Pittsburgh is actually ok. It’s city enough that you can spontaneously do almost anything and I could go to 7 shows a week if I wanted to but it’s also surrounded by three epic rivers and it was kind of built in the middle of the woods so it still kind of feels like that’s where you are. Western PA woods are the best kind also. Plus it’s neighborhoody so kinda has a small town feel sometimes. And after being here for 6 years, it’s really weird to realize how many people I know or know of. Desi and I went out on a date with the same guy and didn’t even realize it until after it happened. My bank teller realized that he lives in my old apartment. Shit like that. Everyone knows everyone.

Anyway, for the last billion weekends before this one, I left for some kind of country adventure whether it was visiting my extended family or driving to State College and back. And during those weeks I felt stable and balanced for the most part. So obviously the 50/50 thing is necessary. That’s why I think I’ll love Salt Lake City if I end up there. I feel like there are a million adventurers in Utah. Chill people who just like to hike and ski and kayak. Mary seems to think that’s where my soulmate is. More specifically, he’s probably at the Patagonia outlet (which, by the way, is absolutely amazing she says). Our eyes will meet in the ski pants aisle and that will be the start of happily forever.

Man wish list:
– At least 6’0″
– Outdoorsy in every way. Like would go camping and/or to the lake every weekend if he could.
– Kinda scruffy but in a well-maintained sense. Flannel shirts all the way. I’ve weirdly only been attracted to guys with facial hair lately.
– Absolutely honest/open about everything and truly believes that’s the only way to live. You can’t force someone to have this value or learn to be that way. They either can or they can’t. They do or they don’t. Don’t waste your time thinking they’ll change and/or come around and/or warm up to the idea.
– Brown eyes. They make me melt. Green and hazel are tolerable. Blue eyes are gross.
– Liberal political tendencies
– Humble, altruistic, loves people/the environment/the world/life
– Good at engineering and/or good at making/fixing stuff
–  Coaches little kids soccer
– Drives a Jeep. We need something to tow the boat with. Also, I’ve been Jeep brainwashed. My parents have always had one for as long as I can remember. And the best days of my life were spent on roadtrips in Tim’s Wrangler. Speaking of roadtrips…
– Must love roadtrips (and be good at them… stops infrequently, sings along with the Ryan Adams, knows how to pack a car, etc.) and also love good roadtrip music. Speaking of music…
– Must love alt-country and punk and everything from the 90s and just music in general. If you don’t go to a lot of shows, I can’t be with you. Because that’s all I want to do.
– Has siblings and is best friends with them. At least one of them has to be a sister. Guys without sisters are emotionally inept.
– Dog person. No cats. Ever.
– Likes good beer and whiskey. Also not a lightweight. I can drink a lot. You better be able to keep up.
– Wants to have 4 kids and is open to a few or all of them being adopted
– Has broad shoulders and tan man arms/hands/wrists
–  Can put up with the fact that I’m motivated and fiercely independent and hard to deal with sometimes especially at the beginning when I have walls. Once I trust you enough not to destroy my heart, I’m the most affectionate/low-maintenance girlfriend ever, I swear
– Can put up with the fact that I love to laugh and be unserious/ridiculous and also that I still have a huge imagination
– Knows that I have the potential to do amazing things for the world with my huge capacity to love and encourages/supports/pushes me the whole way to get things done. The greatest loves are those that make you an even more exceptional person than you ever thought you could be.
– Wants to have as many random experiences and see as many places as possible before we die together when we’re 95
– Knows that life is about way more than just making money and that it’s better to find a career that fits the life you want instead of making your life fit around your career
– Sees right through my shit and makes me accountable for it
– Does not have rich parents. I could write a book on why. But for now, just take my word for it.
– Remembers my birthday every year. I don’t even need a party or a present or a nice dinner or anything. You just have to say Happy Birthday and acknowledge that I’m one year older and happy about it. I don’t care about the whole anniversary thing or any other date that might be important. You just have to care that I’ve successfully lived another year and be happy that I’m around.
– Wants to settle down in Pittsburgh when we’re ready for that type of thing. My kids need to be close to my family and the farm. I want them to be able to have the experience of partially growing up there.
– Believes in lazy Sundays. Reading, cooking, chilling on the porch swing, watching football, napping in the hammock, etc.

I have yet to meet a guy that’s all those things. I don’t think I’ve met a guy that even comes close. Maybe I’m asking for too much. Like the soccer coaching is probably a stretch. And I could just buy a Jeep for myself. But… in general, that’s what I’m looking for. And Matt was so far off of that. And honestly, those things haven’t really changed from when I was 17 so I don’t know what I was doing. We had weirdly amazing chemistry that I got caught up in then it turned into love so even though we had seriously fundamental differences, it lasted a long time. And now I’ve learned a ridiculously critical lesson which I am grateful for and it’s only going to get better from here.

I can’t wait to find the guy that’s all those things or close to all those things. I want to listen to Tinfoil Hats and look this hypothetical person and know that we’re happy in every way on ever level.

Kid, I’m gonna be with you longer than the world can stand
‘Cause there’s a light that’s stronger
Shining out of your eyes
I see it

And even if I never find this ideal man I’m so so happy just being single that it’s totally ok. If I only ever have a dog and a boat, I’ll consider my life successful/happy/fulfilled. As I said, it’s better to be alone than settle for something that doesn’t make you happy in every way. The point of existence is to live happily and it’s very possible to be more unhappy than happy when you’re with the wrong person.

I’m exploding with life and love and hope. Yeah, there’s underlying anger there. But it actually is going away. I’m not a dweller. It’s time to put my brave face on and just expect that he’s going to continue to be a dick and make me upset and so I’m going to find a way to move past it and live my life and not let it bother me.

The miles and miles of hostility running definitely helps too.