Monday, August 30, 2010

yesterday was my one year anniversary of living in new york, or as i referred to it, "mine and new york's one year anniversary." yeah, i'm one of those new yorkers. (it's been a year, i'm an official resident, can i call myself a new yorker now? should i write to the new yorker to ask? should i put my question in cartoon form??) i love this damn city so much i could kiss it. i can't for the life of me figure out how to be in love with a person, but give me a smelly loud city full of people who think (know) that they are superior to every other life form: TRUE LOVE. it's appropriate that our anniversary came immediately after i spent a whole five days away from the love of my life, hanging out with family in pennsylvania, of all places. i went to the MOUNTAINS. after one day of hiking through woods and rivers, i'd had enough nature and was ready to come back to new york where "i love nature" means "i buy organic produce from the greenmarket and sometimes go to the park to check out joggers!" new york, i love you.

Friday, August 20, 2010

things i love friday.

one of my favorite bloggers, gala darling, writes weekly "things i love thursday" posts, and "carousel" posts on fridays, which are round-ups of her favorite tidbits around the web. this will be a combination of the two... things i'm loving in real life and across the internet.

-"yes means yes: visions of female sexual power & a world without rape" essays compiled by jaclyn friedman and jessica valenti: this book is rocking my world. the way i think about sex and relationships and everything thereof is being shifted in the best way.

-this post on the invisible children blog discussing an article from the guardian about what's wrong with NGOs and well-intentioned westerners, and what we can do better.
The article highlights a troubling myth that do-gooders too often take for truth: Being a foreigner motivated by good intentions equates to being qualified. Shockingly, foreigners with no development experience—none—come to places like Gulu year after year and attempt to work with vulnerable communities in need, doing anything from offering up counseling, to helping trauma victims make products, to handing out shoes and other items. With no development philosophy guiding these behaviors, money gets wasted, the wheel gets reinvented, stereotypes get fueled, and little real change sticks.
i struggled a lot with my decision to go to the dominican republic this year and the struggle was in part because i so completely agree with the points made this post this could turn into a lengthy ramble, so suffice to say i had a good experience this year but will not be doing a trip like that again.

-ray lamontagne & the pariah dogs' new album "god willin' and the creek don't rise": so. so. good. ray was one of those artists who took a while to grow on me, but now i'm completely obsessed and this album is just gorgeous. the title track is my immediate favorite, but the entire thing is just beautiful.

-camping! i'm going to a cabin in the mountains in pennsylvania with my family next week and i can't wait for swimming in a river, exploring caves, picking blueberries, roasting marshmallows... ahh, everything. as much as i love the city, i occasionally enjoy its antithesis as well.

-homemaking. i mean literally making a home. our friend lisha moved into the apartment a week ago, and since she, tj and i were originally planning on living together a year ago, it's finally like it should be! we are planning a chalkboard wall, choosing more wall art, and generally fixing our home to be just as we like it.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

i wasn't at this show, but i heard about this talk and looked it up earlier today. it hit me at the right time.
"you’re going to freak out. you’re going to have at least one moment per week where you don’t feel right. maybe it doesn’t feel so wrong if you know that it’s kind of supposed to happen to you. it is the other side of being conscious and loving, that there are going to be times you’re going to have to hit control-alt-delete. you’re just going to have to take a moment. you might be walking through the airport, you might be having the time of your life. in fact, it’s more likely to happen during the time of your life." - john mayer

i'm freaking out a little lately. i'm taking lots of these moments. bear with me, i'm trying to keep saying yes.

Monday, August 2, 2010

"what've you been up to?" i love asking this question to people i haven't seen for awhile, but lately, i don't know how to answer it when it comes to the "what about you?" portion of the conversation. i spent ten days in the dominican republic last month, doing construction work (cement blocks can suck it) and loving the most adorable kids in my world. since then, and before then, my summer's been oddly empty and full. i don't have a job. i'm not taking summer classes. i've been spending my time going to free or cheap shows and trying to embrace lazy summer. it's difficult, i don't like not having a schedule. i'm waiting to hear about a babysitting job, so i'm in this limbo where i don't really want to look for any volunteer opportunities lest they conflict with the babysitting schedule, but i can't stand not doing anything. i've read a decent amount, and self-reflected perhaps too much. i've wandered the city and shared meals with good friends. looking back on the mental list of summer goals i set for myself.... i'm a little behind. so here's what i will do this month:
-go to the beach. i've only been to the beach twice this summer, both times in the DR. for someone who has been in love with the ocean for years and spends most of her summers living within 15 minutes of the most gorgeous part of the jersey shore, this is not okay.
-get lost. i live in this incredible city and there are parts of it i've never wandered. more solo wandering excursions are necessary.
-go kayaking in the hudson. a friend and i have tried to do this once, then realized it's only open on weekends. attempt #2 will be soon.
-take a dance class. either ballet or african. probably ballet. it's been years, and my body's craving it. i dance on my own but i need to go to class. the obstacle is the cost. i need to make it a priority and just do it, because i've been saying i am going to for a while now.
-spend more time on rooftop bars. berry park in williamsburg, i'm looking at you.

one more month of summer, i vow to live it up and not spend it counting down to the start of the semester.