I have to start out this post by coming clean: I am not really a frequent user of Instagram… at all. This needs to be said. I have an account and I post a few photos here and there, but I don’t think I am following anyone, and I only recently realized that there is such a thing as tags. It’s funny, because I always give Andrew (the 22-year-old IT expert-genius-wunderkind-entrepreneur) hell about sucking so hard at Facebook. He doesn’t know how to find a profile (“How do I find you?”), and he doesn’t know what a wall is (“How do I find my wall?”), and he’s only had a profile since 2008. Yeah, sure, you may have done something with your life and you may have spent those 5 years creating things and thinking outside the box, but you don’t know how to stalk people on Facebook. That makes you seriously computer-handicapped, Andrew. I still love you though; I just don’t understand your priorities.
(He also doesn’t know how to use Twitter, but I don’t either, so we don’t talk about that).
Anyway, not a frequent instagram user, so I get all of my information from my sister, who follows thirty billion people. Sometimes I’ll glance over her shoulder, when she rudely checks her phone while in the company of me, and I swear to god 80% of the photos people upload are photos of food. Beautiful photos of food, sure, and I can tell that it is probably yummy, but, like, what’s the point? It’s different if you make some absolutely extraordinary looking/tasting food that you just have to share with the world (every once in a while), but if it’s your breakfast, snack, lunch, snack, dinner and dessert, almost every day, then I don’t really get it. I guess it’s a way to show off your lifestyle, I don’t know. Maybe it’s part of an image one wants to uphold, I don’t know. I can understand if you are traveling and you want to show off the exotic food, because then it’s part of a story. Also, if you go out to dinner with your friends, why not take photos of your surroundings (and if you feel comfortable, you and your friends), rather than just the food? It’s like, great, gullasch, but what was the mood like? What was the atmosphere like? It’s your prerogative, it’s a free web, but I would love to know why.
Bottom line is that I don’t know, but I am willing to listen and to broaden my horizons. So, enlighten me, please. Why do so many people post photos of (most of) their meals?
Here is a photo of a muffin I posted once. I am clearly no angel.
I am turning 24 in less than two weeks, and I still get butterflies when I walk into a toy store. Am I the only one who feels this way still, so many years later?
Yesterday, my 17-year-old sister and I went into a toy store to buy birthday presents for our other sister, who just turned seven. Seven is a great age – I remember liking it. You are funny, cute, and if you are lucky, charming as hell. Behaving like an angel and a devil is perceived to be equally adorbs. Yeah, I liked it. Back then, I collected the little figurines that came with the Kinder “Surprise” Eggs. Remember those? I had a little suitcase full of them, and packed on some pounds with all the chocolate I, erhm, cough, dreadfully had to eat to get to the little plastic figurines. The things you put children through… geez.
I was really big on toys: Barbie, Polly Pocket, My Little Pony, Playmobil, dolls, and so on. I could play for hours and hours on end by myself without interruption, and I am sure I still could… if it wasn’t considered lame or not age-appropriate. Sometimes I’ll play with Karla (the one who has turned seven, and who is coincidentally a real bossypants), and I have to bite my tongue not to be like, “OH MY GOD, STOP BOSSING ME AROUND, KID. THE STORY YOU CAME UP WITH SUCKS!” or “Okay, that’s fine, but now I want to be Sleeping Beauty, except this time she is not going to be sleeping; she’s going to be a hardcore doctor, who delivers her own child, and goes backpacking through Europe, where she meets and falls in love with Lance, who she later realizes is the evil twin of her ex-husband, Chance, who steals her baby.” Storylines are a lot easier to come up with if you are subsequently a regular viewer of “Days of Our Lives”… just a tip.
I think my sister and I spent at least and hour and a half in that store, although this was more due to the fact that we sometimes had to take ourselves out of the equation and remind ourselves that we were not going to be the receivers of these gifts (honestly, it was mostly me, who had to do this… consistently). Eventually, we bought her some interactive coloring books that she wanted (one of which has now gone on MY wishlist, I don’t give a shit), and some other things on our father’s behalf, like a cabriolet for her Barbies. I used to spend hours making my Barbie minivan comfortable with pillows and blankets so that my Barbies and their families would feel comfortable, when they suddenly had to go on the road quickly to escape from the bad guys, and their minivan was all they had. Not sure she’ll be able to fit ten people and the neighbor’s cat into this little cabriolet, but I guess that’s “not important” to this generation.
Things are not what they used to be, am I right?
So, tell me, what did you like to play with when you were little? Could you still play if you were given the right toys?
Ani contacted me a few weeks ago about doing an interview-swap of sorts, which was really exciting, because a) Ani is wonderful, and b) I get to try being on the other side of the, uhm, email-exchange? Receiving questions rather than sending them. And let me tell you, I knew it was going to be tricky for me to be the interviewee, because I am indecisive and have a tendency to over-think everything, but this was much, much, much harder than I had expected — a hell of a challenge in fact. I needed 3 days to think of an answer to just one of the questions. Maybe this is why I never get anything done in school.
Anyway, I got to interview Ani, which was sweet. Ani is a sweet and lovely 26 year old girl from L.A, California, who blogs over at Love Well Crafted. Also, she has the most stunning eyes, ever.
PS: Here is the interview she did with me.
What is your favorite sound?
I love the sound of the ocean. That moment when you just barely doze off under the sun, laying out on the beach, and when you wake up, everything is sort of hazy but you feel the sun and all you can hear are the waves crashing. It’s so peaceful, and one of the reasons I would never want to move away from the west coast!
When do you feel beautiful?
That’s a tough one. I think I feel beautiful when I put on an outfit and it works, effortlessly. It just has the perfect fit and I feel glamorous, powerful, fun, flirty, whatever it is I want to feel like with that outfit, right away, without having to make adjustments. It also helps when I get a compliment, especially from my hubby!
Do you often smile at people on the street?
I try to! It’s funny, when I participate in the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer, you walk for two days and you smile and say hi to just about everyone that walks by because that’s just what you do, and everyone is super friendly. So, for DAYS after the walk, I am still in that mode. Last year I was walking through the halls at the hospital smiling and saying hi to everyone … all these doctors I didn’t know, and everyone thought I was nuts! But I think it makes us all happier people. I mean, it’s just a smile – it’s free! So why not?
If you had to choose one color to wear forever, which would it be?
Such a tough one to answer. I’m getting in to bright and bold colors and patterns lately, but I feel like I always revert back to a pair of comfy jeans and a gray sweater. That dark heather gray color is so comfortable to me, it’s always soft and soothing. It sounds boring, but I love it!
When was the last time you cried in a movie theater?
Oh jeez. OK… confession…. I cried at the end of Brave. I took my cousins to see it and it was so sweet, it’s really a great mother-daughter movie. And at the end (*spoiler alert*) when the mom is still a bear and they think she’s stuck forever, it’s just so sad…. :’(
What would you most like to be remembered for?
I’d like to be remembered as someone who was loving, caring, and creative. A good nurse who does her job right, is an advocate for her patients, and helped make a difference. I’d like for people to remember my style and my creativity (my blog!?) and that I am always trying to find another project to start. But mostly, I hope that whatever people remember me for, it can one day inspire others to reach their full fabulously loving and creative potential!
HOLY EFFING SHIT, WE WON THE EUROVISION SONGCONTEST.
Some of you might not know what that is, but it’s like… the annual Champions League of tacky music. It was created in the mid-fifties to bring a broken up and war-torn Europe back together after World War II, to give us something to bond over — Music. Each year, more countries are added to the competition, and now there are so many that we need semi-finals to decide who should be in the finale (where there are “just” 26 countries participating). Unfortunately, it has become very political, with neighboring countries voting for each other, etc. At least, you sometimes get the sense that there is more than just one motive when it comes to handing out points… that part is a little disheartening, and a relatively new phenomenon, which kind of takes away from the innocence of the concept and the mentality it was originally founded on.
I was beginning to think that winning was going to be a once-in-a-lifetime thing, which would mean that I had already had my “once”, since I was alive and kicking back in 2000, when we last won. Last night, thirteen years later, we won again, and Denmark has officially gone berserk. Like, beserk. Everyone is extatic, almost dancing in the streets. We knew our chances were good (notice how I say “we”, like I have had any part in this), because we had a really great song for once, but you can never be sure, ever. And because I am a careful optimist, I kept a healthy skepticism, because hybris likes to kick you in the rear when you get too confident. That is why the Danish speaker/commentator annoyed the hell out of me. 5 minutes into the show he made it sound like we had already won, and I just refuse to believe that it is good karma to be so ahead of the game and overly assure of yourself. This time, Karma had other plans/better things to do than pay attention to our douche of a speaker, but next time, next time I bet you we won’t be so lucky.
I was so proud last night. So proud and so happy. It’s such a stupid thing to feel pride about, but I guess I feel proud for several reasons. First, I am proud that we had such a good entry, because we really did. Emmelie de Forest, our performer/representative is just 20 years old, and she has been consistently great throughout the whole thing. She is sympathetic, humble, and she was modestly dressed (unlike some of the other, erhm, performers). The song had a universal message (the lyrics were pretty banal, but I have yet to hear a song in this competition that has profound lyrics), something we could all relate to, and the production and arrangement was brilliant for this show. It had easily recognizable instruments (a flute and drums), and you got a sense of the chorus straight away. It was just an all-around great song. The second reason why I am proud is that it was written by a completely unknown song-writing team. One of them, a young male, is working as a sound technician on one of our larger TV-stations. Another one, a young woman, finished 5th (or something to that degree) on our version of the X-Factor. The third one has written songs for this show before, but apparently not as successfully. It just proves that we need new blood, and that there is a new generation ready to take over this competition.
I watched it in the summerhouse with my grandmother, and there is no one I would rather have shared this experience with. We’re not proud to say it, but we watch it every year, even when we know we have no chance of winning, and every year we tell each other, “There is no hell we are going to waste three hours of our lives on this BS next year”, but we do. Every year. Because you know most other people are watching it, and it’s like a nationalist thing. You feel extra connected to everyone else, and everyone wants the same thing. Everyone feels a little extra united, I guess. And now we also feel pride.
If you want to, you can watch our entry here.
Here’s to crossing another item off my unofficial bucket-list: Flea-market saleswoman.
When I was little, it was a yearly tradition for my grandparents to buy a stand at a flea-market, and I would come help by selling cake. I have a picture where I am standing behind piles and piles of things, trying to sell a piece of cake. And, not to toot my own horn or anything, but I am pretty sure my overalls and braids contributed to at least 50% of the sales we made. And my overall winning personality, of course, which was prevalent even back then. I remember telling several ladies that they looked “fabulous” and “beautiful” in my grandmother’s old coats, and most of them bought them! So to me, flea-markets have always equaled SUCCESS EXPERIENCE, where you leave with a lot less shit and a ton of cha-ching.
However, that was many years ago, and my grandparents eventually stopped going. But I have always held on to my things thinking that one day I was going to do that again, on my own, and get rid of them that way. Fast forward to yesterday, where I, after a spur of the moment decision made last week after seeing a poster advertising this flea-market, decided to spend four and a half (cold, windy) stiff hours on the lawn in front of my building along with ten other people, including my sister, who, like me, had chosen to defy wind and weather in attempt to sell all their old no longer wanted
It took my sister and I twenty minutes to carry out a table, four chairs (two of them were used to showcase our items), and at least one hundred pounds worth of
bullshit things, like books, DVD’s (who even uses those anymore), shoes, and clothes – and an electrical heating blanket, which I wanted to be our centerpiece. I do have some experience, after all. However, I was sharing a stand with a rookie, and it was veto’ed.
Our view from behind our stand.
So, we waited. And we waited. And we waited. And the wind blew all of our things on the grass. And this was pretty much the circle of events. Lots of waiting, lots of attempting to keep things from flying off the table, lots of tea-runs. No one bought anything, except for me, who kept going to our competition to buy things out of absolute boredom.
Someone was selling store-bought cake that was still in the wrapper for twice the original price — I thought that was pretty ballsy. And before you go think the worst of me, no, I didn’t buy it! But someone else did and was snacking on it for an hour.
Eventually, more people came, and a lot of people were interested in our things, at least it seemed that way; but it never really took off. It rarely got beyond, “How much is this?”, and even though our prices were in no way unreasonable, it just wasn’t interesting enough, I suppose. My sister sold a lot more than me, which led to a looooot of tension behind our table, let me tell you. Every time she went inside to pee, I contemplated setting her things on fire.
So, what DID I sell? I sold a copy of Michelle Obama’s autobiography, and a jewelry tree — and made a grand total of 8 dollars. Ergo, Totally Epic Mega Fail.
The flea-market was supposed to last till 4p.m, but at 2:30 I looked at my sister and said, “It’s cold, it’s depressing, I am hungry, and I have spent more than I have earned. How about we say fuck it and go watch “Twin Peaks”?”. And because my sister is the best sister in the world, she responded with the words I most desired to hear at the moment. “Oh my god, yes!”. So we packed up all of our things, again, which was pretty much everything we had carried out earlier in the day, and that was that. I was going to take a picture of our stand before we packed everything up, just to show you that there was practically ABSOLUTELY NOTHING MISSING, but I forgot. Sorry. Just look at the first photo and pretend it’s the end result, because it was.
It was SO demotivating. But, I have decided to not let this be my last time flea-market’ing, because I don’t want to have my last experience be a bad one. And also, it’s so circumstantial. You can be lucky, you can be unlucky. Either way, I will try again. At some point. When it’s at least 25 degrees celsius outside, and if the flea-market is held near a hotdog-stand.
I am sure I have mentioned this before (I am getting old and my memory is failing me), but I love walking. Going for walks is probably one of my most favorite things in the world. Maybe it’s because I know I should never ever ever take the capabilities of my legs for granted — they are not exactly the most reliable part of my body. When I walk, I feel like I am defying everything. With every step I take I am breaking down a barrier, and I am telling the disease that is causing my bones to be frail to go f itself. Every night, I sink together on my couch after a long walk and I feel like I have done my job — I have made myself physically exhausted, just like those jogging away on treadmills for hours in the gym. This, walking, is what I can do to feel normal, healthy and alive, within my body’s realm of possibility.
And it’s all I need. I am happy, I am content. I am walking, breathing, and I go home with a set of lungs full of fresh air and so much hope that I feel like I could burst. I am a flower blooming along with the bushes, trees, and everything else living that is cared for and nurtured by the sun and the earth’s natural resources. Unstoppable, invincible, every walk is like leaving the nest for the first time; brave and with wings that have been neatly patched up by those who love me, those who cared for me when I felt like I would be broken forever. For ten months, my grandparents held my hand and guided me through the fog of a situation that seemed so meaningless. Now, here I am, their babybird. Hope is the thing with feathers…
Sometimes I am joined by my sister, who clearly could have been a prima ballerina assoluta. Such grace, such style.
And sometimes we play. And sometimes I hide in crooked little houses and wave to the camera.
It’s all out there waiting for me.
Yesterday, I just happened to walk by my aunt’s totally sane ex-boyfriend’s leisure woodshop; a sanctuary that holds a lot of wooden flutes and toilet paper holders, and also a place he had to call home for a couple of months after he was, erhm, “brutally kicked out” of their shared apartment.
Without giving too many details (it’s not my story to tell, although I reeeally want to), I just wanted to show you an alternative way to handle a break-up.