Saturday, September 5, 2009

Ooh, Guilty Pleasures...

We all have them.  Dark chocolate, 80's movies, cheesy pop music, stereotypical romance novels...I think we probably all have several guilty pleasures.
Personally, I see nothing wrong with them.  I would never make fun of someone for taking pleasure in an food, music, or hobby that I might not get.  I mean, after all, I like Hanson.  As in, the trio brother band that sang the hit "MMMBop" back in 1997.  I'm young enough I can say, "Hey, I was 11 when they came out!"  Some might not see it that way.

I also like popcorn flavored Jelly Bellies.  You know, the jelly beans known for having every flavor you can think of?  Including the release of Harry Potter inspired flavors like ear wax, booger, vomit, and spinach.  My dad bought a box one time when we took a journey to Borders.  They always sell them at the register.  He ate ALL of them.  And he vouches, "They all taste exactly as they are named."  I've never had the nerve to try one, although I did take a whiff of my boyfriends breath once after eating Dirt.  It smelled like dirt.  Popcorn flavored, though, are my favorite.  I used to by them by the bag-full in high school, and all my friends HATED me because they claimed they smelled bad.  My English teacher tried one, and immediately spit it out in his hand and claimed I was crazy.  He also wore a T-shirt that proclaimed: "I love animals.  They taste great."  Besides the point, though.  I'm also a sucker for crappy 80's and 90's pop music.  I like silly YA novels, still, and will buy them occasionally just to get out of my "adult" frame of mind.  I still buy CDs every month, despite being able to get them cheaper online.  I like having the physical recording.  Then again, that could just be an addiction...My collection is probably the envy of even the biggest collectors.

While I was at work the other day, one of my co-workers made fun of me and another manager because we liked Hanson.  Or rather, still like Hanson.  I said to her, "What?  Are you saying you don't have any guilty pleasures that other people don't like?"  She is a little older than I am, but I am not so young that I don't remember her generation of music.  She said, "Well if you're talking about when I was younger, I liked New Kids On The Block."  HA!  I am too young to claim I owned any of their cassette tapes (unlike my collection of Michael Jackson), but I DID own pink slippers and I know the words to "You Got It (The Right Stuff)".  And probably several other songs if you played them.  This particular manager now has a three foot black mohawk with hot pink on the sides and dresses in all black.  I'm sure her friends would shun her if she admitted to liking the 80's boy band.

My friend Sheri has an addiction to chocolate- any and ALL chocolate.  Every time she comes over, she immediately has to deposit an entire BAG of candy bars in our freezer to keep them from melting.  She says she can't go on through the day without her fix of chocolate.  I'm not sure if that is an addiction or a guilty pleasure. 

There IS a difference between guilty pleasures and bad habits, though.  Guilty pleasures are usually harmless, non-addictive activities we indulge in once in a while.  Smoking several times a day- bad habit.  Drinking everyday- bad habit.  My mom's intake of coffee- bad habit.  All are also addictions.  My bad habit- I over eat when I get stressed.  Ugh.  No wonder I can never lose weight. 

So, what is YOUR guilty pleasure?  What is your bad habit?  What is the strangest guilty pleasure you've heard of?  What's the WORST habit you've seen? 

Friday, September 4, 2009

Fudge Covered Graham Crackers

...are the BEST things in the world when you crave sweets! 

I read Mondo's blog today, and was almost delighted that someone else has a problem which certain objects like I do.  She can't seem to walk into a room without light bulbs popping or wear watches for more than a few days without them going out. 

I have a problem with cars.  :-/  I've owned two vehicles in my life, and I'm lucky I got away unscathed by both of them.  I'm also lucky none of my friends have ever tried suing me for causing bad luck while I was with them.  My realization of this problem was with an old boyfriend in high school.  He had three vehicles while we were together.  A Chevy S-10, a Blazer, and a Cadillac he borrowed from his dad.

The S-10 was only two years old when he bought it.  He hadn't had one single problem with it until he met me.  Then, the problems started, and always when I was with him.  His transmission went out one night while we were heading back from a bonfire.  It wouldn't shift, so he was stuck in first gear the entire ride back to my house.  After that was fixed, we were going to go to a race track, and because we had accidentally fallen asleep at his house, we had to be quiet trying to leave the next morning.  He attempted to put the truck in neutral and back it down the driveway, while I waited by the road.  All I heard was crashing and crunching as he backed the truck right into a tree.  For some reason, the steering wheel locked on him so he couldn't steer it.  It broke down completely not long after that, and he used his sister's old Blazer.  He was in a band and had picked me up before one of his gigs, and as we were flying down my old dirt road in Michigan, the front axel snapped in half.  The passenger side front tire was almost completely flat to the ground when we got out.  After that he told me I was a bad luck charm and he wasn't sure it was going to work out.

I didn't own a car until I was 18 and graduated, so I was always stuck riding with friends and boyfriends.  My next boyfriend had a '98 Dodge Neon, and although I hate Dodge, I decided I'd give it a try.  First, the entire muffler system fell off while we were pulling out of his driveway.  Next, a brake pad snapped completely in half somehow, and a back tire couldn't turn.  Because it was winter, at first we didn't notice because it slid on the ice as we were going.  As soon as we turned onto the pavement, though, we felt it.  He pulled over, and behind us there was a huge black smear about a hundred feet long, trailing down the highway.  We rear-ended someone in a storm on the way to a Blink 182 concert.  The electronic fuel injector went out unexpectedly, and we had to walk to my parents house about five miles away.  The front bumper completely fell off after work one day.  It was one thing after another.

My friend Alison used to drive me home from work.  Her muffler completely fell off after I got in the car.  We got locked out several times.  My friend Alisha's old beater car finally took it's last breath on the freeway- with me in the passenger seat.

When I finally bought my own first car, I was scared to death.  I was lucky for the first couple of months.  Nothing bad happened, and I was surprised.  Then, one day I realized that I had used way more gas than I had intended to for the week.  While filling the tank up, I thought that it smelled way stronger than usual for a gas station, so I looked underneath my car: gas was leaking straight back out of the tank.  I blew a head gasket after that.  Once I paid way too much to fix that and get it on the road again, my old best friend's boyfriend backed right over the front end of it, crunching my headlights and hood.  After I fixed that so I could drive it at night, the alternator went out.  I got rear-ended TWICE in that car.  It finally took it's last breath in 2005.  I bought my next car not long after.  It was in GREAT condition.  I was so proud of it.  I drove it off of the lot with a quarter tank of gas, and it stalled in the middle of the road two miles later.  Turns out the gas guage was broken.  I had it for almost six months before I had my first real problem- I got into a car accident on the way home from Ohio, and smashed up the front end.  I was devastated, because it wasn't directly my fault.  It still ran perfectly, though.  After that, I got backed into, someone punched my windshield out, I got stuck in several inches of snow a few times during winter, and finally, I slid into a fire hydrant, taking out the driver side wheel well and rendering it useless.

As you can see, I have a history.  I haven't had a problem since being in Phoenix, mainly because I don't have a vehicle, and I don't have friends with vehicles, except Sheri.  And two weeks ago when we went to lunch, there was a strange white smoke coming from her vents when the air conditioning was running.  I don't know what that means but I'm sure I don't want to be around when she finds out.  Chris and I are planning to purchase our first vehicle together this fall, and I'm nervous.  I'm planning on getting something newer, definitely, and getting it checked by CarFax first, because I will not be paying out the ass for another car that has had too many problems in the past.

Does anyone else have bad luck with certain objects?  I'm wondering if this happens to more people than I originally thought.

Friday Fill-In!

Courtesy of Friday Fill-Ins!

1. I feel like today will be better than yesterday.

2. Watching Comedy Central Roast midnight is always fun.

3. Right now, I can hear these things: Comedy Centrails Roast of Larry the Cable guy (although I really don't think he is funny at all), Chris rolling around beside me, and the fan.

4. I don't have to work tomorrow and I'm glad because I don't think I'll get to sleep anytime soon.

5. The last time I saw my family was last summer.  :(

6. I'm doing absolutely nothing this Labor day weekend.

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to hopefully finding more jobs to apply at. Tomorrow my plans include spending time with Chris and Sunday, I work with my cool manager Amberrrr.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

My Perfect Day

I'm a little late for this, but it's GROUP BLOG THURSDAY!  At least, where I'm at it still is.  :-P  So, here is MY perfect day!  (It may slightly resemble Stephanie's because we seem to agree on a lot of things.)

On my perfect day, I wake up next to the beach, in a hut.  No electricity.  Meaning, no television, telephones, tele- anything!  The sun shining in between the grass walls is what wakes me up.  Yep, ya heard me.  I would start the day out by taking a long, refreshing swim, then showering in the sun-warmed, barely-pressured shower outside.

Of course, I'd need my breakfast.  I don't like eating first thing when I wake up, so I would have to wait until 11-ish.  It'd be a huge platter of different kinds of fruit!  Oh man, that looks so tasty right now.  I love fruit.  But it's so expensive to buy a lot of it.  I'd definitely be indulging on it (if you can really call eating fruit indulgence!).

Next, I would have to try a little bit of sailing, because I've never done it before, and it seems really relaxing and calming.  Like I've said, I love the water SO much, especially the ocean.  I'd pack a lunch to bring on the boat with me, and munch as I chilled out.  Sounds good to me.

That would take several hours of the day.  By the time I got back to shore, I'd need to take a time out and read a book, and probably nap, because I'm going to be dancing the night away at a nice little tropical club!  Woot!  Can anyone say, pina colada and daquiri? 

I'd end the night with a late swim, and just enjoy the freedom I have while it's there.  Ah, the water is so cool, I'll be good to sleep peacefully.  I really, really needed that perfect day.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Slap in the Face

Drama.  What a huge part of adolescent life.  Believe me, I caused my share of it, and was a part of the drama I didn't even know a thing about.  At some point, we all grow up and become adults, and drama takes a backseat.  Right?


It seems to me that my generation cannot STOP with the drama.  Every five minutes there are asses that are going to get beat, a bitch that will get slapped, someone that will get their's.  I live 2,000 miles from everything I grew up around in Michigan.  I moved to Phoenix, albeit against my will, and forced myself to get on with life.  I didn't want to think about the past I had back in Traverse City.  A lot of it dragged me to the lowest points in my life.  I left it behind, though.  Or so I thought.

It seems that some people can't get past drama.  They will do or say ANYTHING to see what the reaction of other people is, no matter how old they are.  I've had a few of my own friends admit they like watching drama but not being a part of it, because it's entertaining.  FIND A HOBBY.  This is why I choose to stay away from and out of most of my friend's and family's business.  I'd rather not choose sides or be a part of something I wasn't included in to begin with.

What do you do, though, when a supposedly "close" family member does something, after you specifically ask them not to?  What do you do when two months down the road you find out they lied about it, and now it isn't bothering them, but it is bothering you and causing drama in your life?  My family member has no idea I know the truth about this particular situation now.  I'm sure she figured I'd never find out.  However, does that make it right?  This person was also the same person that claimed she liked to watch drama but not be a part of it.  I don't want to backtrack five years (this blog is strictly a non-personal outlet for creativity and everyday thoughts), so this is why I'm trying to understand.

What is it about causing drama that attracts normally decent people?  Why does it create heartless and thoughtless monsters, causing them to do things that hurt people close to them? 

Wordless Wednesday!

I'm participating in Wordless Wednesday, even if it is a little late in the day.

I'm about to go to dreamland, so this is the picture I chose.

Dreaming In Color

I love it when I wake up from a dream I had and have a great story idea.

Then again, I hate waking up from the dream when it was SO GOOD!  Ugh.  It makes me sad to go back to my dreary same-stuff-different-day life!

Chris and I decided to stay up til after three this morning, watching Storm Chasers.  Great show, although I'm definitely not a fan of tornadoes.  Anyway, in my dream, I was in the middle of a storm, and this guy (5'10ish, dark blonde wavy hair, great build, amazing eyes) rescues me from being taken away.  I swept up, and brought back to this really old stone house: moss all over the sides, roof seems to be sagging a bit, has a a front yard with a stone path and white marble fountain (so many details, I know!).  He tells me I'll be safe there, and he disappears.

I fall asleep, and the storm doesn't let up.  When I wake up, I find that I'm all alone.  Until this pale, dark-haired stony faced man shows up in the evening, asking me who I am, and what I'm doing there.  I'm not sure, and I'm afraid because he looks terrifying.  He doesn't smile, his eyes are cold.  The man from the night before shows up just after he starts interrogating me and tells the dark-haired guy to leave me alone, that I was caught in the storm and he brought me there.

I'm not QUITE sure how it brings me to find out the next information, but I suddenly know that they are vampires.

Oh goody, VAMPIRES!  I love vampires.

So, the blonde vampire and I (I wish I remembered the name we used- I'll call him Slade) end up being close.  There is a war, between the "Higher Vampire" and some good vampires, and I'm suddenly caught in it because I am human, and the Higher doesn't like that I know so many things.  Slade does his best to protect me, and it is hard, because the Higher Vampire can be in sunlight because he become immune to it, but Slade cannot because he is only one hundred years old.

At the end of the dream, I get this letter from Slade, telling me that he has to leave, and that I should find some place far from the house to live because it is no longer safe for me.  He wants me gone by nightfall, and I leave. 

Of course because it's a dream, about a million other things happen after I receive this note.  For some reason I move to Florida, but I forget to bring shoes, so I'm running around in platform heels, I'm staying with a guy I'm in love with, his dad was in the band Phish but he died (I've never even HEARD Phish before), etc. 

But I woke up wanting to WRITE!  Which is great, because I have been in a dead spell for the last week or so.  I guess I know what I'm doing today, inbetween submitting my resume to potential employers!

Monday, August 31, 2009

Some Thoughts on...Life

This is going to be just a general blog, because I spent the day in bed with a migraine and any hard thinking causes something to start pulsing in the left side of my head, blinding me. 

I thought I would announce something first and foremost, although it isn't exactly exciting.  I submitted a query to an agent early last week, and I haven't heard anything back.  Could be good or bad, but I consider no news good news, because today was dreadful, and I'd like to look on the positive side of things.  I don't do that very often.  I'm a half-glass empty kind of person, and have a hard time looking at the things that are good in my life.

I have had writer's block for over a week now.  I was really tapping along with my next novel, then suddenly, I went blank.  I'm not sure how many of the inspiring novelists on here use outlines before beginning a novel, but I don't usually do it.  I will write out the idea, first, so I don't lose it, and then I will write the beginning.  Sometimes I will write the middle chapters first, think of how it could end, progress to the beginning.  I actually KNOW how this novel is going to end.  It was the first thing that came to my mind when I started it.  But I'm having a hard time getting there now, even though I once saw it so clearly.  It's frustrating!  I blame it on the severe stress that has taken over my life lately.  Does anyone else have a hard time concentrating on writing during hard times? 

I have a promising job opportunity.  I finished up the paperwork the company sent to me earlier today and plan on hearing back tomorrow, but this heavy lifting from my shoulders has done NOTHING to inspire me.  It is just after 9 PM and I'm ready for bed already.  I've even got my Bedtime Story cup of tea beside me, and the book I'm currently reading is on standby on my end table.  I'm hoping once I hear back tomorrow I'll be ready to finish the book I'm writing and get on with life!

So, this leads to my next question:
My first novel is young adult, therefore I've been searching for agents that represent YA novels.  The one I'm working on now, though, is fiction literature.  If and when I finish this, do most publishers like to be the soul publishers of an author?  Is it proper to go through two separate agents for two separate novels?  I'm new to this business, so I've got a million questions on my mind about it.

I hope that everyone had a great beginning to their week!  Phoenix is FINALLY getting the first real storm of monsoon season and I'm enjoying it.  It has cooled off immensely!  How's the weather where everyone else is?