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This past weekend, I finally did it. It was a difficult choice, but I knew there was no way around it. I went home to visit my parents. While my once a month visits in college seemed like more than enough for all of us, my parents now treat me like a first-born son coming back from war after three years as a POW. In every conversation, my parents made a point to tell me how glad they were I was home. When I told them I needed to leave early get some class work done, my father’s disheartened look was enough for me to realize an early departure would only leave me feeling guilty the entire trip back.

Trip Highlights:

Mom: Is it okay if we just put a mattress on the floor for you?
Me: I can just sleep on the floor in the living room like before.
Mom: You said you didn’t lke that so we put the bed together last time.
Me: Dad did that without you knowing. You told me to sleep on the floor.
Mom: Oh, like I never do anything for you.
Me: It’s only one night… I need to go back early to get school work done.
Mom: Oh, be quiet. You’re staying two nights. We’ll make up the mattress.

 

 

Mom: You have no ass. Your pants are sagging.”
Me: “Do you think I need a smaller size?”
Mom: Examining me and grabbing my thigh, “Not with those things.”

 

Sister: In Boston, after a group of girls cut in line to be with their friends. “People have got no manners. It’s not okay.” Then proceeded to try to knock them down on the dance floor with limited success.

 

Me: Mouth full of chocolate chip pancake.
Mom: “Are you eating down there? I’m afraid you’re not eating. Are you anorexic?”
Me: Still chewing… “I just had four pancakes…”

 

Mom: “Lauren has the best nose of all of us; your father has the worst.”
Sister: “Lauren’s nose is better than mine?”
Mom: “No, no. That’s not what I meant.”
Sister: “How is her nose better than mine? Her nose is smaller than mine?”
Mom: “No, your nose is smaller… They’re both very nice noses.”
Sister: “I can’t believe you said her nose was nicer than mine…”

 

Mom: “Older men love young girls. They can’t help it.”
Dad: Rolls his eyes at mom.
Sister: “Dad hates you.”

 

Me: “I forgot to buy soup and shaving gel…”
Dad: “Do you want my shave gel?”
Me: “I’m all set; I’ll stop by CVS.”
Mom: “Make a list; we’ll come down next weekend.”
Me: “You’re not coming down next weekend.”
Me: “Wait, are you coming down next weekend?”
Dad: “Your mom just wants to go to the beach; it has nothing to do with you.”

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Life Like A Movie

Remember the "cigarette burns" scene in Fight Club, where the narrator explains that Tyler splices clips of porn into kids' movies? My life is kinda like that, except that instead it's just randomness all the time.

Have you ever seen a movie where the plotline suddenly changes or some weird freaking dialogue gets thrown in, and you pause for a second and think, “Wow, that is totally unnecessary.” That random break from script that throws the audience off? That’s my life.

Yesterday, out of no where, one of the supervisors told me to marry rich. I told him I’d rather marry poor (not that it particularly matters either way, but I just wanted to mess with him). He scoffed at me and told me I should marry rich so my husband can take me to all these amazing places I research and write about every day. Leaning over my cube, he asked me if I wanted to travel. I told him no (it’s not travel that bothers me, it’s hotel sheets and shower floors that bother me, but I’ll leave those pet peeves for another day). He said he was done with me, and with a wink, he said he was just done giving me advice, but wasn’t done with me yet…

At my second job, after validating someone’s parking stub, she gave me a big hug and with a look like I had just save her puppy’s life, she told me I was an absolutely wonderful person. I was hugged again by a father who was traveling with his family from India when I told him the museum was open daily from 9:30 to 5. I’m not sure what made him so ecstatic about our hours of operation, or what makes people think this is Disney World and I’m there to hug and take pictures with (actually, I very politely declined from having an older gentleman take a picture of me yesterday, but undoubtably some bride goes through her wedding photos and finds random pictures of the girl at the front door mixed in with the bridesmaids and flower shots). Later that night, I was chased around the top floor of a dark museum by my boss who was trying to get a picture of me for my staff badge (she was unsuccessful). On the way out, as I walked down the alley to my car, an SUV of teenage boys pulling out of a 7-11 stopped and waved. The back window rolled down and a young man leaned out the window still clutching a churro, introduced himself, and tried to get my number.

The other day I had a cute and nerdy frat boy (they exist!) go between telling me about his drunken expeditions and his highly successful job. He told me about Zelda, Thailand,  drug dealers, eating Chinese chicken soup with actual full chicks in it, singing Back Street Boys at karaoke and falling off the stage, and a talking mouse named Maurice  Smith who cooks Mexican.

And just to top off the randomness, I found about 100 arcade tickets when I went to park my car before work. That’s like 4 ring pops.

If my life were a movie, I’d fire the editor, because things are obviously not syncing up.

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Today I accidentally referred to my roommates as my family. My slip made me pause for a moment to think about what it actually means to be a family.

I spend most of the year with these people afterall. We have witnessed each others best and worst moments; the absolute pinnacles of happiness and the absolute most heart-wrenching moments of sadness. We make small talk over the dining room table and argue about whose  turn it is to take out the garbage. We act as one another’s mother, sister, best friend, and weird aunt who offers to give you a nickel if you rub out her bunion…

Being a family it seems comes less from genetics than  from the unconditional love you can have for someone, even after you’ve seen them wipe earwax on the wall or pick particles of food from their fingernails or sleep with a giant Robert Pattinson blanket….

As weird as they are (and trust me, they’re weird), I think there are still stranger family dynamics than our own.

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Spiderman from fastcharacters.com

I believe bathroom time should be alone time. Door closed, blinds shut. Recently though I’ve discovered that I am no longer able to be alone in these private tasks. I am being watched. Not by some creeper hanging out around the house. No, I am being watched by a family of white arachnids who have taken residence in my home. I am joined when in the shower, while flossing my teeth, when brushing my hair…. I relocated a few to the great outdoors, by my new eight-legged housemates keep finding their way home.

 I have another option… the one most people I believe would take- crush  the tiny little bodies in a tissue and toss them with the garbage. But I can’t bring myself to do it. I had no problem taking out the colony of ants that decided to declare war on our kitchen counters with a can of Raid, and I didn’t feel too bad while eating my Asian chicken salad wrap tonight, but actually crushing the life out of a little creature seems too much.

So I decided to make a deal with the house crashers. If they don’t touch me, I won’t touch them… So far so good.

Then again, maybe the university has been up to some nuclear experimentation on the spiders and I’ll have Spiderman powers in the morning.

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Ohno on Wheaties Box. From http://www.ohnozone.net

If Apolo Ohno wins gold tonight and ends up on a box of Wheaties, I will eat Wheaties and nothing but Wheaties until he’s off the box. That is my promise to America.

Bring on the scurvy!

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If it is possible to fail at meditation, I’ve done it. As a required by my Let’s Pretend this Public Speaking Course is a Religion Course to Fulfill University Requirements professor, I attempted five days of meditation (okay, I attempted three…). About 2 minutes into each session I’d get so anxious to get back to work that I would just give up and go back to writing my papers, reading my textbooks, or (of course) working on this blog.

There’s something about a college dorm room that doesn’t say “relax and be at peace with the world” so much as it says “AHHHHHHH!!!! DEADLINES!” We are so enwrapped in work that its sometimes harder to take 10 minutes to breathe than to write a 10 page research paper. It’s second semester (which always feels so much shorter than first) and it’s only a few weeks until Spring Break, the time when professors start steamrolling students with papers and projects, just to ensure that they are sufficiently stressed before (or even worse, after) vacation. Maybe we should all just relax, breathe, and find our center.

Anyway, it’s time for me to get back to work…

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Evil Lurks in Room 113


I have never experienced anything like it. I woke up in a cold sweat and panic. I had to turn on the light and settle myself. This was the third time in one night. The terror struck hard and fast and I awoke to realize that my nightmare had followed me back into my room. A periwinkle paisley binder, a black wire-bond notebook, and a mostly dilapidated laptop… the things that were haunting me.

I have never had a class like Business Planning. Others have told me the stories, but I until last night’s panic, I didn’t realize how much the class was affecting me.

This morning I woke up to find my face was breaking out in mean little red eruptions. My eyes have deep purple circle forming, like a kid after amateur boxing night.

Tonight I’ll be moving the notebook and binder to the other room before I go to sleep to try to clear the bad energy out of the room… or maybe I’ll just soak them in holy water…

 

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