The universe is throwing me all sorts of cosmic stuff lately.
Or I’m reading into everything, desperate for a sign.
My date’s name, my date’s middle name, my date’s brother’s name. All the same as the one before him.
My name on a giant marquee as I walked down 45th tonight “SARAH’S KEY” in big, block, black, letters.
My friends used to joke with me that I could predict the future.
This I know for sure.
But I also know that I have pretty keen powers of observation and a predilection toward the pessimistic therefore I see things coming before most people do.
I can do this for every one but myself of course.
Isn’t that always the way?
It might be impractical
To seek out a new romance
We won’t know the actual
If we never take the chance
I’d love to collapse with you
And ease you against this song
I think we’re compatible
I see that you think I’m wrong
But anytime will do
Anytime will do
No choice of words will break me from this rule
Anytime will do
Anytime will do
What choice of words will take me back to you
So when I get back from Seattle I start a full time job as a nanny. With this full time job comes full time paychecks. And as a result of that I’ve decided to make a couple of big purchases as well as taking this year to build up a savings account (and apply to grad school dun dun DUN!)
Its no secret that I need a new car. The minivan hasn’t had power steering in over a year and the check engine light turns on if the wind is blowing in the wrong direction. The time has come for me to buck up and buy my own vehicle and I’m both thrilled and terrified at the idea of this. I’d love to be able to turn the wheel of my car without straining my biceps (though I suppose I’ll have to go to the gym or something now..) and having a reliable way to get places is a definite plus. But this will also mean car payments, and like…if I get in an accident it’ll be way worse than if someone hit my old banged up minivan. And insurance! And gas!
and so many things cost money!!!
Why must I become an adult?
When I first got to Seattle my seattlefamily was very kind and took me to Target to get some things I would need. On the list was shampoo and conditioner and sadly Target didn’t have the brand I normally buy (Neutrogena Clean in the pink bottle!) so I picked up some Aussie and didn’t give it much thought. I’ve been hating the Aussie since my first use. It leaves so much residue in my hair and I’m not even a huge fan of the smell. But being that I’m a poor intern it seemed ridiculous to buy more shampoo when I had a big full bottle. I decided I’d just suck it up and finish it out the rest of the summer.
Tonight while I was in the grocery store buying fruit and granola bars for my brown bag lunches I saw that Suave shampoo was on sale for 1.49 a bottle. They have a new anti-residue formula and I figured for 1.49 I could give it a try.
Turns out the shampoo is excellent. Nothing fancy, but my hair finally feels clean for what feels like the first time in months! All for less than 2 dollars. Who can beat it!
I still really wanna buy the Iphone though….
“And I’m not the girl that I intend to be,
I dare you darling, just you wait and see
But this time not for you but just for me,
And I say
Ooh, how’m I gonna get over you?
I’ll be alright, just not tonight”
– Gonna get over you by Sara Bareilles
Something about that line in that song really resonates with me. I’m not exactly sure why. Perhaps because I, like many teenagers, thought I knew exactly who I was. It took me until I was a sophomore in college to really realize I didn’t know myself quite as well as I thought I did. That I had been projecting things upon myself, and changing myself to fit different molds whether it took the form of a guy I liked, or a group of people I wanted to hang out with. I did this so seamlessly I could barely recognize I was doing it.
I remember one of the first times I gave this subject any thought was the third or fourth time I watched the movie Juno. In the scene where Juno is forced to tell her dad and step mother she’s pregnant her dad (who has taken it pretty well, all things considered) says to her,
“I thought you were the kind of girl who knew when to say when.”
And Ellen Page does an incredible job of looking both pained and bewildered and says back to him calmly,
“I don’t know what kind of girl I am.”
I heard that line and silly as it sounds I got goosebumps.
Because….what does that even mean?
What kind of girl was I after all?
Its a dangerous and difficult to question to ask, especially in our society with all the expectations, stereotypes and ridiculously high (and double!) standards we have for our females.
I didn’t have your typical teenage years (though the older I get the more I realize very little is “typical” of many people’s experiences.) Sure, I had things in my life that caused me to grow up fast. But before my parents got divorced or my mother got sick I was already a responsible kid. I was sensible and cautious and as annoying as it may sound I was really mature. I pretty much always have been. Every teacher report card seemed to comment on my maturity. I’m not sure how or why I came to be this way but it is a truth about myself I have accepted. Even if it sometimes keeps me from having the maximum amount of fun. Even if I worry that I’ll go crazy at like age 57 because I didn’t “sow my wild oats.”
Its just the way I am.
I think this is also a reason why I’ve always gravitated toward older men. Now that I’m for all intents and purposes an “adult” (my mother will argue that I am not in fact an adult but whatever legally speaking I’m an adult) the age differences between myself and my romantic interests doesn’t worry me too much. But looking back on my teenage years I shake my head and my heart starts to beat a little faster.
When I was in high school I had some relationships that were extremely ill advised. I wrote about one such experience on here previously: https://neuroticall.wordpress.com/2011/01/19/hads/
And its not like I had “daddy” issues. I have an amazing relationship with my father. I attracted the attention of older men. I was mature for my age. I presented in such a way that people mistook me for older, this still happens to me. Just recently a fellow intern was shocked to find that I was only 21. “I thought you were 25 for sure, you just seem to have it so together” he said. I never had much in common with guys my own age. I always boiled down my attraction to older guys by explaining how I loved being able to learn things from my partner. As a teenager this made sense. When you only have 16 years of experience to draw from, a 30 year old man from Ireland has a hell of a lot he can teach you. So can a 28 year old band teacher. Even a 19 year old college guy has more life experience than you.
If you haven’t guessed where this post is leading yet I’m going to post a video, which I really think everyone should watch. I wasn’t able to post the video directly but if you click on the video below it should direct you to the clip on youtube:
Doesn’t that story just make your eyebrows do all sorts of animated, furrow-y things? For the most part I’d been trying to ignore the media circus surrounding this ridiculous brouhaha. Partly because teenage girls being romantically connected to older men hits a nerve with me. Partly because being a former teenage girl romantically connected to an older man I have a hard time trying not to justify. To let the dreaded “age is just a number” phrase escape my ashamed mouth.
Then I saw this interview with the “happy newlyweds” and it all became clear.
I’m not the girl that I intend to be.
I don’t know what kind of girl I am.
I don’t even fully know the answers to these questions and I’m 21. I can enlist in the army, I can vote, I can buy and drink alcohol, I’ve obtained a bachelor’s degree, hell this girl hasn’t even graduated high school.
How could her parents allow this?
First of all the way she dresses, the bikini tops, caked on makeup and bad dye job all suggest a total insecurity with her body and herself. Did I feel that at 16? Yes. Do I still feel that sometimes? Yes. She’s still a kid. She’s still figuring it all out. Right now her main ambition is to be a pop-star (though at this point she seems more likely to become a porn-star.) She’s a silly kid and she’s now married a man who is old enough to be her father and then some.
What does it say about her husband? The same thing it says about Justin and the same thing it says about John. There is something wrong there. Something not quite right, when they want to spend their time romantically with a child. With a person who, however mature they may appear doesn’t have a fully formed brain. Giving them the power, the control, the years of head start, and the superiority.
Furthermore, what does it say about America? When a marriage between a 16 year old child and a 51 year old man is legal in a whopping 39 states, while adult, consenting gay couples can only be granted legal marriage licenses in 6 states. Doug Hutchison and Courtney Stodden got engaged the very first time they met in person. THE FIRST TIME THEY MET….IN PERSON….THEY GOT ENGAGED.
And people think legalizing gay marriage dilutes the “scantity of marriage.”
I hate/love that the media is giving this topic so much attention. I hate it because I worry that it glamorizes this lifestyle to young girls, just as 16 and Pregnant seems to have done for teen pregnancy. But on the flipside of this coin, I hope this prompts more parents to talk to their teenage daughters about love and marriage and sex in a candid, open way. Courtney and Doug met online and this is yet another reason I think parents need to be more cognizant and in control of what their teens are doing online.
Its an important issue which I know has been beaten to death in the blogosphere lately, but I couldn’t help but writing out my two cents.
I love children, I really do.
I’m really hating most parents this week.
Which I hate. I hate myself for doing this.
Sometimes working as a teacher turns into me analyzing each child and wondering how the hell in 5 short years of life on this planet they’ve become this way.
Of course each kid is born with his or her own….quirks we’ll say.
The quirks are unavoidable of course.
But its all the other crap. All of the behavioral SHIT that happens and swirls around the quirks.
All that stuff? IS THE FAULT OF THE PARENTS.
Except, no, I’m gonna go a schizophrenical on ya’ll because some parents are awesome, of this I have no doubt. Some parents teach their children amazing manners and don’t tolerate tantrums and are consistent and yet when their 5 year old is dropped into a new (and probably uncomfortable to a certain degree) setting, they forget all the awesome stuff their parents teach them. I understand that this happens.
Then there are the children who have been royally RUINED by well intentioned, hippie freakazoid, clueless, weak, should-not-be-allowed-to-breed-ever parents.
You can tell the difference because the kids who are just thrown off by a new experience tend to fix or adapt their issues by the end of the first day or perhaps the second day. The ruined children get worse and worse.
I know people will read this and they will roll their eyes at me and say that I cannot possibly know what I’m talking about as I have never had a child.
To them I say: that may be true but my powers of observation are still pretty keen…
Here is how I will prove my point in this angry, disjointed post!
So I have a repeat camper at the zoo this week that I first had as a student at the theater. Her name is Saffron. I wouldn’t even change the name because anyone googling the word saffron is surely looking for a paella recipe and not a child but for the sake of safety I’ll refer to her as Spice Child (SC) henceforth.
Now, her name should have been a clue that things were going to be challenging. After all, I might be a difficult child if my parents had named me after a spice (and not even a cute one like Paprika or Cayenne).
On her first day of camp at the theater SC was brought in by her mother. For the first part of the program campers were to sit with their respective group and teacher while the parents sat near by and received important information from the lead teacher. SC refused to sit quietly while the announcements were being given. She insisted on meowing and pretending to be a cat. Despite my attempts to get her to listen to directions she rallied harder against me. I looked toward her mother, sending her the mental brain waves “Do you really want me to discipline your child in front of you? Really?” She smiled at SC and nodded enthusiastically at her. Very pleased by her daughter’s disruptive cat performance. After a challenging first day with SC I came back Tuesday with a whole bag full of tactics to foil her problem child ways. But she wasn’t in class that day. Nor was she in class the next day. I inquired with the camp coordinator about whether or not I should continue waiting for Saffron in the morning at drop off.
“Oh, yeah no SC’s mother called and said she wasn’t having enough fun to come back for the week.”
This struck me as odd for two reasons. The first being she had appeared to have a fine time (especially considering she just did whatever the heck she wanted all day long.) Also, the program she had been signed up for cost 360 dollars and was non-refundable.
Which meant her mother had willingly flushed 360 dollars down the toilet because her daughter wasn’t having “enough fun.”
I figured I would never have to see SC ever again so I essentially forgot it, until she showed up at the zoo on Monday and I cursed everything that is good and holy.
So far in the two days of zoo camp which has felt like an entire week already SC has
-done every single activity as a cat or some variation thereof.
-taken her shirt off (or attempted to) 9 times.
-Run away from the group at least once an hour.
-Screamed loud enough to break the sound barrier daily.
-Tackled, threw something at, or at the very least invaded the personal space of both myself, the other instructor AND all her classmates. Oh let’s say this occurred roughly every 20 minutes.
I’m at the point where I feel like yelling at her. I mean really yelling. Yelling to the point where words will escape my mouth before I even know they’ve formed in my head. The kind of yelling where my face will turn as red as firetruck and cartoon steam will shoot out of my ears.
But I don’t do this. Instead I numbly retreat inward, becoming a broken record robot who can only say
“Please stay with the group.”
“Please stay in your own body space.”
“Please follow the instructions”
“Please stop talking and put on your listening ears.”
“Please get the heck away from me before I punt you like a football into the sky.”
“Please just kill me now and get it over with.”
Its only Tuesday and I’ve lost my will to live at the zoo.
When SC’s mother finally arrived at 4 pm today I was very keen on observing their interaction.
“MOMMMMMMYYYYY” she shrieked all while running full steam ahead for her mother’s butt. With her little fists outstretched she greeted her mother with a swift and determined double punch to the ass.
“OH SC!!!!!” She said “HAHAHAHA”
“heehhehehehehe” SC giggled happily and again took a running start, this time headbutting her mother mightily in the stomach.
“OOOf” Said her mother.
Ooof. That was it.
I turned to look at my fellow teacher already finding him staring blankly at me, his eyes glazed over as if to say “Is this….real life?”
As spice child took another running start he found his voice and said
“Hey! Lets be careful and respectful with our bodies, I’m sure she doesn’t want to have your body coming at hers so…forcefully.”
“DON’T talkkkkkk to ME!” intoned SC.
I had a 2 second flash forward of her as a 15 year old and literally shuddered.
After that exchange SC and her mother were on their merry way.
I know that I have no idea what happened once SC and her mother were alone. Maybe her mother disciplined her, or at the very least attempted to. Maybe she spanked the crap out of her. Maybe she discussed the importance of respecting people’s personal space. Maybe.
But I’m willing to bet that didn’t actually happen.
I have a case of the Mondays hardcore. Plus I’m missing all the people I love. I’m feeling restless and anxious and I should be sleeping…
Hopefully I’ll wake up in a better mood and the inspiration for a better post.
I went and did an errand in Fremont today.
After my errand I walked around and made a series of well intentioned yet misguided decisions.
For example, I should have had lunch at the Baguette Box as opposed to Pie.
I really wanted to try both places. Pie is intriguing because they have small hand held personal pies, both sweet and savory. I got an egg based savory pie for lunch and it was pretty disappointing. Super dry. I got a tiny little key lime pie bite for dessert with high hopes and that too was lame! I should have known, there was no graham cracker crust which is half the charm of key lime as it is. Its rare these days that I find a pie better than one I can make myself. Lessons learned. Next time I’m going the french Asian fusion sandwich route.
My second horrible mistake was trying on a perfume at a store called Bliss. If you know me, you are aware of the fact that perfumes are something I have a little passion for. Any sort of pleasant fragrances really. The perfume I tried was from the Save Fragrance Scent Lab and was called Tattoo Parlor.
Thinking about it rationally I’m not sure why I was even compelled to smell this.
A tattoo parlor conjures up scents such as sweat, poor decisions, pain and fear.
And yet, I sprayed it on my arm anyway.
I think I saw the name and I associated it with sexiness. Seeing as I love me a man with tats. Like drum god of my heart forever and ever, Mr. Travis Barker.
But sadly, the perfume didn’t smell like a sexy punk rocker.
It smelled like whiskey and old leather. Which perhaps might be sexy if it were radiating off a cowboy or something. Really the theory is better than the practice.
I felt as if I smelled like a grizzled hooker. And subsequently was self-conscious about it the rest of the day. I googled how to rid your body of perfume scent. Turns out it isn’t easy.
I washed my arms.
I also doused them in a generous amount of rubbing alcohol.
This just further exacerbated the whiskey smell.
Hours and hours later and every time I even bring my hands near my face I get a whiff of my stupid impulsive decision.
C’est la vie.
Then of course I got stuck at work longer than anticipated. My fellow intern and I were forced to take a cab in order to make it to the play festival we were attending
(which was SO good it practically canceled out all the crap of today) on time. When we arrived at our destination (a mere 2 miles later I might add) the cab driver informed us it was a flat rate of 13 bucks. UM WHAT?! It was so aggravating to pay 15 bucks (tax and tip grr) for a cab ride that should have been like 6 dollars. After we exited the cab the intern and I looked at each other, dumbfounded.
Expounding on what bullshit thievery that had been, being that we should have been informed of this alleged “flat rate” the second we entered the cab.
“If it was 13 bucks flat rate we should have screwed this festival and had him drive our asses all around the city.”
“Yeah! We should have gone to Spokane or something!”
“Or I should have just said I only have 8 dollars in cash here you go!”
“Or we should have just bolted from his scam artist cab!”
“Well, he probably has child locks for the backseat though…”
“Man, that was just shitty.”
The scene: I am standing at the bus stop, waiting for my bus.
Rasta Man: Hey, how long have you been waiting?
Me: About 10 minutes.
Rasta Man: Oh. Ok. For the 16?
Rasta Man: Are you still in high school?
Me: Ummm did you just ask if I was still in high school?
Rasta Man: Yes, are you?
Me: Are you asking that because of my backpack or because you think I look like I’m in high school?
Rasta Man: You look like you could be in high school.
Me: Haha nope. I actually just graduated college….I’m 21.
Rasta Man: Oh no way!
We then went on to have a rather pleasant conversation wherein he told me that I had a lot of personality and that I should audition for the reality show “Bad Girls Club.”
Just googled that one….not sure about it..