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crybaby. crybaby!

10 Aug

My mother tells me that I was born with a frown on my face. I came into the world silently, narrow-eyed and my mouth set in a grim, straight line. Apparently, when the doctor gently smacked me on the bottom to get me crying, my mother said I made a tiny whimper then glowered at him, like the two of us were about to fight like men. This makes sense, as most of the toddler/adolescent photos of me consist of two expressions: (1) frowning and (2) coolly eyeing the camera, like the two of us were about to fight like men. Continuing on, as a teenager and then a young lady, my mother repeatedly told me to stop looking so “fierce.” All this considered and as such, I wasn’t much of a crier.

Yep, Baby Gangsta.

Yep, Baby Gangsta.

What a difference 30 makes. Something funny happened to me when I reached 30 a few years ago. The floodgates, so long ignored–except for the first day of school, K-12-college–were unleashed, rendering me into an emotional, utter basketcase. I found myself crying at everything. Not just moments that deserve tears, like rainy days, Mondays, and This song. Everything. Happy moments. Commercials. Television shows. Friends talking to me on the phone. Everything. Four years later, now and today, this odd, strange exercise in shedding so, so many tears hasn’t changed. It’s worse.

What is it? Weird hormonal stuff? Sad estrogen? It’s not that I mind it, per se, being that, to me, shedding tears is part of shedding skin, letting out, accepting, cleansing. But what do any of the latter things have to do with an Oreo commercial? Or someone telling you how good you look in a dress? Or just driving? Seriously, I cry like a madwoman behind the wheel. Just random moments of endless tears with no real cause (traffic gets more of an endless pounding on my steering wheel, in case you were wondering).

I remember an old friend telling me the following: “You know, [Kitten], sometimes a woman just needs a good, long cry. For no reason. Just a good, long cry. I cry all the time and so should you.” At the time, I was 19 years old, and although I was slightly enamored of her awesomeness, I still decided, however intriguing those words were, that she was a giant weirdo. “A good, long cry”? Why? For what? Even when, during my senior year in college, I threw myself on our kitchen floor and bemoaned all the classes on my schedule that semester–to which my mother succintly informed me to get up, I would be fine, and that I was on the precipice of a bleeding ulcer if I didn’t stop; did I mention how much I love my mother?–I don’t recall crying about it. I just bemoaned. Little did I know how I would take my old friend’s words to heart when 30 came, except all the crying occurred more frequently than not, and seemed to be against my will.

According to this article, there are four main reasons why we cry: natural emotional response; survival mechanism (in other words, something in your environment needs to be addressed); biochemical (a release of stress hormones/toxins); and social function (you draw support from those who see you cry). None of these really explain why the kid in the Cheerios commercial makes me weep. Of course, the article stressed that whatever the reason, don’t suppress it. Let it out. I agree, even if I don’t always understand the triggers.

So, go on and cry, my dears: in your car, into your soup, over that Cheerios commercial, when you find that sweater you were looking for, because it’s Thursday, in the morning, and at night. I certainly will.

your standard, everyday torture chamber.

17 Jul

Some people call said torture chamber a “fitting room,” but I’d like to think that Merriam-Webster will soon come to the light and make the appropriate changes to their lexicon.

Because it is torture chamber, my friends. What else do you call a tiny room where every nook, cranny, and crevice is filled with the kind of unremitting fluoroscent lighting that showcases every inch of your now monstrous body, which seemed to morph into Jabba the Hutt territory during your journey from the clothes rack to the “fitting room”? What else do you call a room where none of the locks ever work, thereby increasing the potential that while you’re bent over trying to pull those jeans up your monstrous body, a mother and her child will walk by and see the horror of it all? What do you call a place where the person who inhabited it before you seemed to believe they were 90s-era Johnny Depp and therefore had the right to trash the place like a hotel room?

Say it with me, yes, yes: torture chamber.

Needless to say, I mostly avoid trying on clothes when I buy them. What? It’s true. To keep from bringing everything back because of fit or color or whatever, I just take forever in the store shop very judiciously. Which means I usually buy a size up. Yeah, yeah, I know, I know. The typical result with buying a size up is that I end up looking like a low-rent gypsy trying to be Stevie Nicks. So the point of this whole diatribe: despite the fact that going to the torture chamber is pretty much walking towards your own doom, I’ve decided to–gulp–try clothes on before I leave the store. Why?

1. It makes sense.

2. The buying and returning game has gotten fairly old, believe it or not.

So, yeah, I’ve been frequenting the torture chamber. It’s not half bad. Well, not really, but let’s not rehash the horrors, shall we? And to prove that I’ve been changing my ways lately (I’m not all talk, you know), here you go:

Bought this sassy dress, by the way.

Bought this sassy dress, by the way.

Bought this pretty blouse, too.

Bought this pretty blouse, too.

Intervention: The Weather

13 Mar

I must preface the following diatribe with this: my love for springtime knows no bounds. I love the warm breezes; throwing my mountains of tights and stockings in the air with wild abandon, knowing that I will not need them for the coming months; making peace with the pollen that will attach itself to me like the tightest windbreaker. I love spring.


The forecast for the upcoming week. It’s still wintertime, friends. (Well, if we want to call this weird period from December-March “winter,” which is wasn’t; it was more like wintnot, being that we saw virtually no snow–the little snow we saw melted in seconds–and the frigid air we were all expecting came here and there, only to be interrupted by weird Caribbean breezes.) Nevertheless, we can expect a very springy week ahead, I suppose in preparation of the official start to spring, which is next Tuesday. (Which means this whole diatribe is basically meaningless, but I had to say something, ok? It’s my blog and I’ll diatribe if I want to.)

The weather is so schizophrenic. The weather needs a ton of us gathered in a rose-scented room, poised to hug it back to normalcy when it finally stumbles in, all worn out from freebasing spring with winter and summer with fall. The weather needs help. I hate to personify something that so does not need personification, but it’s just utterly baffling. I mean, I know it’s because of the wacky atmosphere and the earth shifting or something (obviously I wasn’t listening in any science class, whatsoever), but it’s a little ridiculous. Oh, and my poor sinuses. The barometric twists and turns typically render me into a sniffling, headachey, complaining monster.

If you’re wondering, though, yes: despite my grumbling, I will happily throw those tights and stockings in the air this week. So, yes: this whole complaint was still basically meaningless.

The Male Mystique.

17 Oct

I don’t get them. Males. Guys. Men. Boys. I admit this openly and plainly.

Scenario #3,056: A guy laughs at your silly jokes. He actually listens to you. He marvels at all the things you have in common. He accompanies you to a movie or two. He visibly enjoys being in your company. He generally makes you feel like the Prime Ministress of Awesome. Your spidey sense pulls at you. You wonder if something is afoot. You get that weird, tingly feeling around him (which is not impending cardiac arrest, apparently). You realize that you look forward to being around him all the time. Quite naturally, then (and it is natural, because this is how women are: you notice something and you want to talk about it), you take a deep breath and decide to approach him about what you’ve noticed, a bit excited about it, hopeful, not ignorant of the signs.

And he shatters it all. 

Hey, I’m sorry if you thought this was something more. We’re just friends. I’m not ready for that. 

Scenario #5,000,001: A guy laughs at your silly jokes. He actually listens to you. He marvels at all the things you have in common. He accompanies you to a movie or two. He visibly enjoys being in your company. He generally makes you feel like the Prime Ministress of Awesome. Your spidey sense pulls at you. You wonder if something is afoot. You get that weird, tingly feeling around him (which is not impending cardiac arrest, apparently). You realize that you look forward to being around him all the time. Quite naturally, then (and it is natural, because this is how women are: you notice something and you want to talk about it), you take a deep breath and decide to approach him about what you’ve noticed, a bit excited about it, hopeful, not ignorant of the signs. However, you decide against approaching him, not wanting to somehow disturb the force, not wanting to ruin whatever this is. You rather hope that as it goes on, he will take the initiative and come to you to discuss what he’s noticed.

And he shatters it all.

Hey, I would love for you to meet my fiance. Are you free this evening?  

Friendly Advice #718: You shouldn’t have said anything. You should have waited for him to come to you.

Friendly Advice #3: You should have said something. You shouldn’t have waited for him to come to you.

Do you see? Isn’t it obvious why I live in utter confusion? How does one muddle through the whole Math class feel of the menfolk and relationships and the whole silliness of platonic and whether to accept that I don’t even have this level of communication or constancy with my closest friend, but I do with you, but we’re just pals, and that makes no sense, and oh, but you do have feelings for me, but how would I have known because you didn’t say anything and oh, ok, you were waiting for the right time, which was a year later, when I’ve grown cobwebs and bitten my entire nail bed from the anxiety of it all, and…and…

When I was in college, I waited until the last minute to fulfill my Math prerequisite. Not for a lack of trying, but none of the classes were working for me and the beauty of college was walking out of class whenever I wanted, which I certainly took advantage of when it came to Math. Nevertheless, if I wanted to graduate, I needed that credit. I went to my advisor, who highly recommended a professor with a long record of helping students like me. I went to his class, convinced that it wouldn’t work, not for someone who had struggled and fought with Math for so long. I had no expectations of passing or getting it. Oh, but it did work. And I did pass. And I did get it. Even better, it was one of the best classes I ever took. Why? I understood what he was teaching, solely because he made sure that his students knew how to get to the answer. Patiently. And that’s how I learn. Everything fell into the place, once I knew how to get there. I passed with an A, by the way, in case you wondered why pigs were flying in 2000.

My point in relating that Mathy blast from the past can be summed up by something a friend once told me: “[Girley], when you find that right person, it won’t be confusing. You won’t have to guess. Everything will fall into place.”

Contingency Plan #1 and Only: until we reach Everything Falling Into Place, I’m intent on taking everything at face value. Whatever it is, it is. (Or will be, will be.) I will ask no questions. I will do no guesswork. I won’t ask random strangers if that twinkle in his eye was meant for me. No phone call, no hanging out, no nothin’, will mean anything until whoever he is tells me exactly how he feels. (That’s right, folks, he has to tell me. May be old-fashioned, but that’s me, unapologetically.) If it’s right, it’s right, and things will fall into place. 

Until then, I can’t allow the Male/Relationship Mystique to make me crazy (well, crazier). I refuse to continue to pull out my hair over these affairs of the heart.

And So it Begins.

8 Mar

They’ve unleashed Pandora’s box.

I will be on this website like crazy.


Needless to say, I’m trying to figure out how to get to London on April 29…

I’ll be the one with the sign that says: BEST REASON TO MISS WORK EVER.

‘Cheerio, for now.

Good morning, Sunshine. Care for a Primal Scream?

10 Jan

I had one of those weeks.

Where everything went south, where work was like a Sisyphus-esque boulder on my back as I headed uphill (and my balance was as sturdy as melted butter), where a few tears were shed, where, yes, I wanted to open my lips and release the kind of primal scream that would end up on a CNN News running headline.

*”Girl releases primal scream. Causes near deafness in anyone with ears. More info at 11.”

*Hopefully, Anderson Cooper will report the story and ask to interview me (and yes, I will so grant that interview), during which the subject of the primal scream will be replaced with a long conversation on pop culture, his dreamy blue eyes, and the mutual agreement that, minutes after the interview, he and I must become best friends.


I had one of those weeks.

Rather than attempting to figure it out, I will focus on what I learned. Here comes an 8th-grade style heading (for nostalgia purposes) and a few bullets:

What I Learned
By GirleyGirl
English – 7th Period

  • I do not and cannot handle stress well. No amount of relaxation breathing or visualizing or trying to remove myself from the situation helps me. I make mistakes on the task at hand, I cry, I sigh, I get angry, I want to release said primal scream. But because I’m currently not independently wealthy or cushioned by a second income, I have to work. And at work, stress has made itself quite comfortable. So I have to figure out how to make things work. Implosion is likely, but it’s not an option. I need to research, read articles, force myself to do some of that breathing.
  • Work stinks. Unless you’re Anderson Cooper’s personal assistant (which means you have the best job ever) or a person does what they truly love, work stinks. Yes, there is a paycheck for your trouble, but again, unless that check is coming from Anderson Cooper, or from yourself, or from an employer that pays you incredible amounts of money, that paycheck only emphasizes the stinkiness of it all. All that said, I need to keep “work stinks” in mind. Makes it easier to be less surprised when the stinkiness floats to the surface.
  • Other people really don’t get it. They’re sad because you’ve opened your mouth and released a silent primal scream and they want to comfort you, but the specific situation you’re going through is only kind of relevant to you. Nevertheless, relying on others important. Soothing and comfort is very important. Talk it out, Girley.
  • This is what being an adult is all about, really. Dealing. Freaking out. Handling it.

This ends the weekly bullets and this little missive.

Now. On to somehow becoming BFFs with Anderson Cooper…

Seppie’s Back, Baby!

2 Sep

So it’s September. Years ago, when I was trapped in school (loved the learning; didn’t so much like the societal pressures of school), this time of year was so nauseating. My stomach in painful knots, I would have walked outside this morning with a melodramatic grimace on my chubby face, convinced that the first day of school had arrived with a certain grotesque scent in the air. With said knots grinding away in the tummy, I would have slowly trudged to school, hoping for the end of the day before it even began.

Sigh. Thank God school is over.

Anyway, summer is unofficially over; the kids are back; a 10-minute commute to work will now grow to 20 minutes and over; the year somewhat begins anew. Rather than eagerly wait for fall (because we all know how futile that’ll be, along with it lasting 3 days), I will wait for the 90-degree heat that is promised to assail the atmosphere in the coming weeks and simply hope that it doesn’t kill me. And I won’t complain when summer finally ends some time in October or November.



Sincerely, Taj

Dear World, I have stuff to say, so get cozy. Here, I've got cupcakes.

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