Sunday, April 29, 2012

A Day in the Life

In Improv we have a game where we ask an audience member to sum up their day, start to finish, in as much or as little detail as they wish. We will then as a group, act out an artistic and hopefully comedic interpretation of that persons day. We call it, A Day in the Life, and it one of our best audience participation games. So with that in mind, I would like to give you A Day in the Life of an Anxious White (Newly Single) Virgin...sans the comedy troop. Let's rewind all the way back to around to last night.

I found myself in bed, trying to fall to asleep but struggling to shut my mind off. This happens often and usually if I just let it tucker itself out, I will eventually fall asleep. For some reason, last night my mind seemed to want to ponder the question of how long I thought it would take for someone to find me if I were to die in my sleep. I'm a healthy young adult, however, things happen, you never know...at least, this is what my mind is telling me. My money is on a good couple of days. Sweet dreams.

I tossed and turned and woke up around 4am with some song (don't ask me what), running on repeat over and over and over. This, coupled with thoughts of never finding someone to spend my life with. My mind, left to its own devices can be quite cruel. I am learning something about the human mind, or at least mine, and that is if I am not actively thinking about something else, it tends to want to run radio station Worst Case Scenario 104.5 FM. Gotta work on that. For all that I sit here and talk about perspective and positive thinking, when the rubber hits the road and people start giving me all the true yet cliche' answers, I wanna slap them with a mackerel. Guess that means I'm human. Lovely.

I spent the earlier part of my morning eating kettle korn and curling my newly shorn hair. I have always wanted to try short hair but never did because someone somewhere once or several times informed me that men like longer hair. And since it seems my goal for the last 10 years has been to get me a man, I felt obliged to keep it long. I no longer feel this way. Call it a symbolic rebirth of sorts, or call it a bob. Either way.

The reason for the curling of the hairs was so that I could participate in a friends film project for a local company. That is obviously not my hair, though I would kill for locks as thick as those synthetic strands. The wig was needed for a great reveal later on in the scene. Note me in the red dress, what follows might be disturbing to young viewers.

Yes, that is my friend Shawn in the same red dress. And while it disturbs me greatly that we can (A) Fit into the same dress and (B) Have him rock it in ways I never could, nevertheless, a good time was had by all. And I got to practice my lipstick on males application skills.

 After shooting, I caught up with some friends for lunch at a local eatery where the question of why you don't put ice cubes in beer was raised by a non-drinker (Mormon) to guy who ordered a beer (Not Mormon). He refused to answer the question based off of the absurdity of it, but replied something to the effect of; You just don't, if you drank you would understand. Us non-drinkers sometimes fail to grasp the complexities of such things. The subject of escort services also came up, apparently business is good in Utah. The conversation wasn't raunchy at all, rather more discussing the legalities and whether or not any of us thought we could ever do such work. This was particularly funny since I was the only girl at the table.


I am finding it incredibly important to stay "anxiously engaged" during this transitional period. Alone time is not my friend. I'm also learning what it means to need people in good healthy positive ways. Maybe I don't have to go at this life alone, maybe that's why we are all here, so that nobody has to suffer alone. This may seem like a "duh" statement, but what can I say? I'm a slow learner sometimes.

Later that evening I had the opportunity of trying a traditional Hot Pot dinner with a dear friend of mine who's birthday it was today. It was tasty, though I'm fairly certain I ate something I am allergic to, because my ears are bright red and my throat is ever so slightly inflamed. Worst Case Scenario is kicking in again and telling me that this is actually how I am going to die in my sleep tonight. Sweet dreams. My friend also brought along a couple oh his friends and we enjoyed an enlightening conversation about their arsenal of firearms and the merit of Utah strip clubs. I had squat to contribute by means of personal experience, but I certainly had plenty of questions. Sometimes us non-strip club goers/workers fail to grasp the complexities of such things.

To top off the evening, I was able to play with one of the local improv troops. It was a fun show and the audience seemed to really enjoy it for the most part. The best part of this story is that after the show, one of the female audience members shouted at me from across the emptying theater, "Hey! You! Girl! You were FUNNY! Come play more often!!  We want to see more funny women!!!POWER TO THE OVARIES!!!" No joke.

Which brings us to where I sit tonight at 2am, trying to finish this blog so that I can attempt to sleep for at least a couple of hours, or possibly forever if the Hot Pot gets me.

So there you have it. A Day in the Life of an Anxious White Virgin. Sweet dreams.

Friday, April 27, 2012

Whoa-Man

I found this cute little whatever you call these things while browsing facebook. Cute right? But something seemed...amiss...SO...I opened up ye old paint shop, and after trying to figure out what the difference between marker, paint brush, and spray paint was, I was able to tweak it to what I felt was a more accurate representation.

Don't get me wrong, I'm all for the sensitive and emotionally mature man, but I think we need to be careful sometimes lest we fall into the trap of trying to make a Man into a Woman and vice versa. Men and women are different; I actually just finished watching a lecture given by Helen Fischer, where she talks about this very thing. We have plenty of science to show how we are different biologically and on a neurological level. Woman's brains seemed to be wired for verbal strengths and "web thinking" as Fischer puts it. This is why you can observe woman having a conversation that seems to dart from subject to subject without a clear end goal in mind. I try to avoid labeling because I fear that it compartmentalizes people and in extreme cases, pigeon-holes them into stereo-types which they then buy into, which can lead to possible stunt potential in progress and creativity.

For example, traditionally, the bulk of comedic performers have been men, with exceptions of course. When I first started doing Improv many years back, I quickly learned how much of a "mans world" it really was. For whatever reason, women seemed to have more trouble on stage. The problem extended to the audiences as well at times, where you would see less support by means of laughter coming from the crowd for the female players. This could have simply been because the woman wasn't funny, but I think we also need to consider the option that it may have had more to do with the fact that her male companions on stage were not setting her up for the laughs they way they were with eachother. There is also the possibility that even though a man and a woman may tell the same rounchy joke, the audience is going to be more receptive to the male because of their preconceive ideas about female proprioty. I have found this to be particularly valid here in Utah where womens roles are still pretty firmly defined and traditional, not that there is anything wrong with that. However, it did and has made my journey in the Improv/Comedy world an interesting one.

I may not be correct in any of this, but I at least know that I am not totally up in the night either. The reason I know this is due to individuals total lack of verbal filtering by way of opinion sharing. I have on more than several occasions had this same scenario play out, where a person (male or female) has come up to me after seeing me perform for the first time (usually in an Improv show) and said something along these lines..."Gee, you were actually funny" (as if in shock) "We usually hate when they have girls performing, they are never funny, but you were funny, it's so nice to see a woman who is actually funny."

Now, this may simply be a number game, a matter of statictics, let me explain. If you have an Improv troop with 20 men and only 2 female (not uncommon in Utah) then statistically speaking, the likelyhood of both of those women being funny is pretty low. There may be just as many unfunny men out there, but they don't stick out lick a sore thumb due to gender. Or look at it this way. Let's say that there are 120 people in Utah that do Improv 20 of those are women, 100 men, and of those men, only 80 are really funny, and of the women, only 10. Techinically speaking, if the troop is trying to be fair and rotate all of the players equally, this including at least one girl per performance, then your likelyhood of seeing a bad guy vs. a bad girl  is going to be much lower. With the girl, you have a 50/50 or 1 in 2 chances of getting a funny one. But with the guys, you have a 80% chance or 8 in 10 chances of seeing a funny guy.

By the way, I have a diagnoseable math disability, so if this elementary statistics work is wrong, it's because numbers make my head hurt. But I'm a whiz with words....The Lord giveth...The Lord taketh away.

In the end, the differences between men and women may not translate into every aspect or profession of this world. A woman can be president and a man can stay at home and raise the children. But let us not, in this search for total equality mix up our terms, Equality and Similarity. Are men and women Equal? Certainly, and anyone who says differently is placing some sort of external value on the genders and their inherit strenghts and weaknesses. But Equal does not mean Similar, instead of Equal, lets say, Worthy. Are men and women both Worthy of love, repsect, freedom, and the pursuit of chocolate? Of course, no question. But does that then mean that in order to accomplish this, we must throw away our innate bioloigcal differences for it's sake? I tend to think not.

 Let's be honest men, do you really want to experience the equality of child birth or PMS? And ladies, if we are being honest, do we really want our boyfriends, husbands, and fathers getting all weepy and emotionally distraught every time their boss tells them that he needs him to stay late again tonight?

I think we sometimes forget that it is the differences between us that serve to make a greater whole. This doesnt have to be limited to a romantic or even male/female relationship, but it does mean that you have two or more individuals who may be stronger where you are weaker and the other way around, and when these powers combine.....they form...Captain Planet!!!!

Or maybe just something greater than the sum of its parts.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Retraction

Many of you have noticed that my last bog entitled "consideration" was taken down shortly after posting. I wrote the blog last night, posted it, and then tried to go to sleep, unfortunately, sleep would not come to me. I ultimately decided that I did not wish to publish the piece, and I would like to take just a moment to explain why.

Recently, several of my readers, friends, and others have mentioned that while my pseudo philosophical rants are appreciated and my humor enjoyed, I'm missing a critical component to my blog.....myself. Me, my life, my experiences, my heartaches and triumphs, my reality. After all, this is why, in part, people bother to read other peoples blogs, they want the insiders scoop, or like a dear friend of mine said, "They want to feel like they stumbled upon your private journal." This makes sense to me. This is why "reality" TV is so popular. We have an innate curiosity about each other, especially the anomalies among us, which might include a 29 years old Mormon virgin living in Utah.

I am beginning to see that they may be on to something; what I didn't realize was the level of exhibition and vulnerability that would require. It is one thing to hide behind a pseudonym or pen name and then let it all hang out. Why not? It's not like anyone will ever judge YOU for it. You can keep wearing your well constructed social mask while you bare your naked heart to the world.

Side note: A good friend of mine, Scott Foster, who is a brilliant singer/songwriter, wrote a song called "Naked Heart" which you can hear on his new CD with the same title. You can listen and purchase his music at http://therealscottfoster.com/music/  I have always appreciated Scott's honest and thoughtful lyrics and remarkable musicality, so check him out!

Returning to my explanation.

It was with all of this new information about what readers really want, that I decided to write the piece that I have since retracted. Though there was nothing particularly damning or overtly intimate about the entry, ultimately I took it down because of something I had discussed in a previous entry. In my post, "Ive got your 'other cheek' right here!", I discuss the power our words have on the world and the people around us. I stated that while a persona may be totally "justified" in their complaint, or use of negative words, it can ultimately bring about no good by spewing them forth. I have been guilty of this so many times in my life, and no matter how many times it has come back to bite me in the butt, I never seemed to learn my lesson......but last night may have been the start, or at least one occasion where I chose to remain silent rather than to vent "righteous" anger.I couldn't get past the blatant hypocrisy of what I was about to unleash out into the world. To the few of you who actually got to read it before I took it down, I'm sure you might be thinking that I'm making it out to sound a lot more spiteful than it actually was. While this might be true, I still couldn't in good conscious leave the entry posted. However, I do not wish to you leave you completely in dark on the situation surrounding the post. Here are the facts....

For the last 2 years, I have been involved in an on-again, off-again relationship. Recently that relationship ended. The way the relationship was ended was incredibly hurtful to me and has left me heartbroken, as you would probably expect a person in my situation to feel. I think we should be more concerned if I didn't  feel heartbroken after giving 2 years of my life to someone. Vulnerability is not something I do well. I know it is hard for most people, but for me, it feels like most of the time, you might as well asked me to expose my neck to King Cobra, for as much as I want to vulnerable with someone. I am realizing of course that in order to have the kind of intimate and long lasting relationship that I ultimately want, I am going to have to strike a healthy balance on this whole vulnerability scale. I'm working on it, I feel like in a lot of ways, I was finally able to "go there" with this guy; this makes to loss of the relationship more painful, but it also gives me hope for the future as I will at some point, have to begin the dating process again...*shudder*

The topic of my retracted blog had to do with how the relationship ended and the feelings I had about the way it was handled. It was be no means slanderous, but I realized something shortly after posting it. One of the main points I made in the piece was the devastation that, what I believed to be a lack of consideration on his part in handling the situation had caused me to feel. Again, I might have been totally justified, as he may have been totally justified in his actions, but when it came right down to it, and maybe for the first time in my life, I decided I would rather be merciful than justified.

 I gave 2 years of my life to someone I love, and even though we have reached the end of that particular road, I feel like it would be a betrayal of what it means to really Love someone to treat them with the very same inconsideration that you are accusing them of. No good can come of it. Anger may seem justified, and sometimes it helps us to be able to move on, but I am beginning to realize that most of the time, anger is just a way to not feel what you are really feeling, which is deeply wounded and sad.  Not that you are always going to be sad, not that your life is over and there is no point to it all anymore, but that at least for a time, you allow yourself to grieve what was lost and feel what you are really feeling. But during this process, (and this is really my point in all of this), we don't have to add insult to injury by lashing out in righteous anger. I will never pass judgement on those who do; heaven knows I have been doing it for years and will probably continue to do it at moments. But I am now realizing that it doesn't have to be that way. It is possible to choose peace over anger and mercy over justice.

Trying in small ways to show the Charity we so often feel is withheld from us, the very thing we are lashing out against is the very same thing we ought to be, at least trying to show each other.

Friday, April 20, 2012

What do you Believe?



I've heard it said that often times, people who day dream about suicide, don't actually want to physically die, but rather, it is the only way their mind can communicate a deep rooted feeling of discontent with their current life. I can see the truth in this. From what I can tell, each and every one of us has, at one time or another, taken a good hard look at our lives and thought....."Really?.....This?....Really?"  And while I can't say how many of those people have at any given moment made the connection from that to "I think I'd like to end it all", I think that part of it might have to do with the length or duration of discontentment. If a person generally is pleased with the way their life is going, then I can't as easily see them flying to such an extreme just because they happen to be having a bad day, week, month or even year.  My feeling is that people with such fixations on ending it all, probably have endured what they would describe as a lifetime of suffering, and don't see any end in sight. They expect that the future is going to be just as hard or unbearable as the past has been. We all do this to an extent, most if not all of us predict or anticipate our futures (to whatever extent), based upon of past experiences. Is this accurate? Yes and no.

If, in the past, you put your hand on a hot stove and severely burn yourself or made yourself violently ill every time you drank gasoline, then it is probably pretty safe to assume that if these actions are repeated in the future, the result will most likely be exactly the same. The problem with this forecasting tendency, and particularly when it comes to depressed individuals, and MOST particularly when it comes to people who have been depressed for so long that they can't remember life being any other way with maybe the exception of their childhood, is that in a way, they are both right and wrong when they predict that life is going to be just as awful and pointless as it has been and there is little hope of it changing. Let me start by explaining why they are right.

I believe, though I have absolutely ZERO credibility or medical degree or scientific research to back me up (what I am saying is, take this with the smallest grain of salt), that there are people out there that, for a myriad of reasons, are simply unhappy. I believe this could be the case due to things like, selfishness, nature, nurture, traumatic experience, ignorance, physical conditions and so forth. In fact, for every 10 severely depressed people there are probably 10 very different causes for said state of mind. The problem with this, is that when someone tries to help them, they are most likely going to give them the same Sunday school answers or say something that is tantamount to hacking at weeds while the root remains securely intact. That root, could also be called a belief. I have come to agree with many therapist, psychologist, spiritual advisers, gurus and so forth,  when they say that much if not all of our suffering comes from incorrect or skewed beliefs. You can also think of them as "the stories we tell ourselves" over and over and over and over. This has both psychological and physiological implications, as I have come to understand it.

So knowing all of this, we can conclude reasonably that in order to remove suffering, we need to change whatever the belief or root that is causing the suffering. For example, I am a 29 year old unmarried female living in a state where the average marrying age is around 23 to 24, not to mention the fact that I belong to a religion that places marriage as pretty much the most critical part of your eternal salvation, not to mention the fact that I also live in the real world where I am constantly being bombarded with one steamy sex scene after another reminding me of all of the fun I'm NOT having, not to mention the haters in my own life who mock me for my decision to remain a virgin till marriage, not to mention the fact that because I have made that choice I have to at least face the possibility that I am never going to be a mother to any biological children, not to mention the fact that I have yet to complete my college degree and may not unless they decide to let that whole math thing slide, and speaking of biology, I am also starting to face the reality that in less than a year I will no longer be in my twenties and it's gonna start getting harder to maintain the relatively fit and youthful appearance I have enjoyed for so many years, and to top it all off there are orphans starving to death in Africa and women being rapped and murdered all over the globe as they are bought and sold like trading cards, so really, who the hell am I to complain about my white bread life????

Ewww......word vomit. But hopefully you get my point.

Everything I have just stated is fact. You noticed that I didn't add any feelings or beliefs about those facts. So really, it is totally possible for someone to have a reality like mine as their reality, and not be bothered emotionally about it at all. Why? Because it isn't the facts that are causing the suffering, it is the beliefs about the facts. It's that whole perspective thing all over again. Which explains why there were Jews in concentration camps who were able to endure unspeakable horror, and never lose their positive attitudes. Now, just to be clear, I think people like that tend to be the exception and not the rule, but unfortunately for those of us who are the rule, it pretty much knocks the wind out of the sail of our argument that our attitude is totally out of our hands. But unfortunately again, this is little consolation when  you find yourself in the midst of a depression brought on by what seems to be a never ending parade of crap.

I wish I could claim that I am the exception, but that would be a lie. I think if I have anything going for me, it is the fact that I seem to have the ability to recognize that my way of thinking may not be the only and true way of thinking. Now, how often does that translate into me being able to logic myself out of a funk? Depends. Depends on the day, depends on the subject, depends on how long I have been wrestling with it. I most certainly have my own deeply rooted beliefs that no matter how hard I try to "unthink" them, they just keep finding a way to validate themselves over and over again. We must also not discount the biological factors here. Depression is not only a state of mind, but also of the body and spirit. When one suffers, the others will quickly follow, so being able to separate yourself from whatever emotion you might be feeling at the time can also be very helpful. You say to yourself "I" feel sad, but "I" am not sad, or rather, sad is not who I am, it is something that the I AM is experiencing. When you are hungry or sleepy you don't typically identify with it, but yet we do that exact thing with our emotions, as if everything we have ever felt is never to be questioned or challenged. But oh, how hard is this to do when we are feeling it. Feels pretty real to me, and it is, just like hunger is real, just like tired is real, but the difference is we seem better able to distinguish between our true selves and our physiological reaction to feed, than we with a physiological chemical reaction of sad. We feel sad, but sadness is not who we are. This may seem obvious and trivial to some; it took me years to realize and really understand what this actually meant, but it has become a concept that has changed my life. I still struggle in my own ways though, and I am always looking for tools and different perspectives to help in the cause of joy.

So what do we do? Are we powerless? Is it simply a matter of finding the right combination of drugs that will "fix us"? This is where I must again tread lightly, for not being a doctor I am in no position to legitimately answer such questions. But here is how it would appear to me. If you are truly dissatisfied with your life for whatever reason, then I would tend to believe that even if you were able to elevate your mood via this drug or that, or through drinking or sex or whatever you pick, it would only serve as a crutch or as temporary relief to the intense feelings  which are a direct result of some sort of belief. Make sense? We can hack at the weed through drugs, food, sex, relationships, vacations, or anything that provides temporary distraction, but ultimately, unless we address the root, the cancer, the belief about ourselves or the world in which we live, or the lives which we are living, then we will struggle to find any real or lasting peace while in this mortal sphere. I don't know how else to describe it beyond saying that it is a peak into the power of the human mind, and beliefs, and our ability to literally create our own reality.  My feeling is that there are greater spiritual implications to this, of which I am only scratching the surface of, but this will have to be enough for now.

Let me end by saying this, Im totally aware that the answer or solution which I have given is a seemly over simplified one, and I can tell you that the process by which we accomplish it, is one of the hardest things I have ever attempted. But I have had moments, shifts, if you will, be they tiny and maybe even temporary. But what those moments have done, has been to prove to me that change is possible, and just because the last 2, 5, 10, 40 years of your life have been one way, does not mean that that is how is must or will be in the future. For as much as I struggle in my own life, I do ultimately believe that we are the captain of our souls, and the writers of our stories. I think that it is this belief that has kept me from totally giving in to the depression and hopelessness that I still struggle to this day with. I know I am not alone in my struggles, and I know it isn't really PC to talk about, but at the moment I simple do not care. If what I am saying can help one other person to feel like they are not the only one or that they are "broken" while everyone else is perfectly content and blissfully happy, then it is worth any judgement that I will receive by being honest about my weaknesses. Whether you have a bad day every once in a while, or seem to have more bad days than good, or can't remember the last time you had a good day, we all know what it is like to suffer, to lose hope, to want to just throw in the towel. In this thing, none of us is truly alone.

To any of those who find themselves at that point that they think they would be better off dead or maybe even plotting ways to make that thought a reality, all I can do is say that above all things, you have your agency. If you have convinced yourself that death is the only relief from the pain you have felt for however long....I understand. Know you are not alone. Know you are not the first nor the last person to come to such conclusions. Do not add shame and guilt for this thought on top of your already existing list of reasons why you'd be better off not hear. But know this also, this doesn't have to be your story. If you can believe nothing else about yourself or the world or anything I have ever spewed forth in my blogs then believe this. As Shakespeare observed, "For there is nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so." Your life, this story you are telling yourself can change, it isn't carved in stone, only carved in your mind, and minds CAN CHANGE. I know it seems impossible to believe but it is truth. It may not be easy but it is truth. And it is worth sticking around to prove me right.

Death will come to us all eventually and all too soon, like everything else in life, this too shall pass, including us. Don't give up. You are so much stronger than you know. Allow yourself to believe, for ultimately, much of all we take with us when we leave this place will be the very belief that governed them while we dwell here. Your beliefs are yours. Yours to keep, and yours to change.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

What's In a Name? Part 1

HI! My name is......What?....My name is ....Who?.....My name is......ummmmm.....Brittney...*Whaaa Whaa Whaaa Whhaaaaaaaaaa*

Ok, so maybe I'm no the real Slim Shady; I'm not even the real Brittney if you think about it. But for some reason, this was the name my loving parents chose for me upon my arrival in this existence.....and I have resented them every moment since.

At first it wasn't SO bad. I mean, it was only a mild annoyance when, in grade school, the teacher would call roll by first name and when she called Brittney, 10 other little girls would raise their hands, along with the 13 Ashley's and 27 Michael's. And if you think this is just another one of my crazy conspiracies, I have magical proof that it's not just the voices in my head telling me these things.

I submit to you the following Disney validation from the movie Hercules:

Panic: "Hercules." Why does that name ring a bell?
Pain: I don't know. Um, maybe we owe him money?
Hades: What-was-that-name-again?
Meg: Hercules.
Panic: Wait, wasn't Hercules the name of that kid we were supposed to...?
Pain, Panic: Oh, my Gods!
[they run, Hades seizes them]
Hades: So you took care of him, huh? "Dead as a doornail." Weren't those your *exact* words?
Pain: This might be a different Hercules.
Panic: Yeah. I mean, Hercules is a very popular name nowadays.
Pain: Remember, like, a few years ago, every other boy was named Jason, and the girls were all named Brittany?

There you have it, proof, hard evidence, if Disney says it's so, then it is so.

Unfortunately, my mild annoyance with my name would soon bloom into full blown desdain with the arrival of a certain "Pop Princess"


You're not fooling anyone with you sweet little yoga sit pose sista'.....we see you for who you truly are. A name usurper!!!!! What do you have to say for yourself??...........................That's what I thought.

So what is in a name? as Shakespeare (if that really is his real name) asked so many years ago? We as human beings have a knack for naming. Indeed, we can trace our propensity for labeling allllll the way back to Adam and Eve, when God gave Adam the task of naming all of the animals and plants and such in the garden. I can just see how this one played out.

Adam: And I shall call you.....Stinky-poo-poo!
Eve: How about Skunk?
Adam: Sure sure....and you I shall name......Freak-Neck!
Eve: Or.....Giraffe might be nice...
Adam: Indeed. And you my fine creature I shall call Giant-Red-Lumpy-Butt!!
Eve: Baboon it is
Adam: It's a good thing you've got me to take care of such important jobs Bubble-Chesty
Eve: My name is Eve
Adam: I suppose that works too


What is our fascination with labeling everything in our world? The obvious answer is so that we can make sense and order of things. After all, if we didn't agree on what to call this or that, then language would do us little good when it came to passing the crescent rolls at Thanksgiving.

Joe: Hey, pass me a crescent roll.
Bill: *Lobs a spoon at Joe*
Joe: No. A crescent roll
Bill: (Slightly perplexed) *Places a turkey leg on Joe's plate*
Joe: NO!!! I said a CRESCENT ROLL!
Bill:(Pause)(Beat)(Considers)*Offers Joe the Jell-O salad*

Bill died that day. But the turkey was moist and the pie plentiful so really, it all kind of evened out.

Ok, so I think we can all see why names are important. But have you ever stopped to consider the negative effects that labeling can have on a person? This is a subject I intend on exploring in my next post. I fear I have wasted too much time in silliness and have subsequently exceeded the attention span length of most readers.

Stay tuned!

Monday, April 16, 2012

Nobody Wants to Marry a Cartoon



















Have you ever been told that you look just like this celebrity or that celebrity? I have a good friend who is a dead ringer for Liv Tyler, beautiful girl. And even though when people say things like this, they just be being polite or trying to pick up on you. Still, it is very flattering when a handsome stranger tells you that you remind them of their Hollywood crush. After all, what person wouldn't want to meet the clone of their favorite star? I myself day dream about meeting a Shawn Ashmore look-a-like, who happens to also be a card carryin' Mormon boy. Chances are though, even if I were to meet such a man, he would almost certainly NOT be interested in dating me. Why? Because though we love to watch em, nobody wants to MARRY a living breathing cartoon character, which is apparently exactly what I am.

When I was just a wee lass I had myself a fair share of crushes. But it might surprise you to know that several of these crushes, if not the majority, were on cartoon or fictional characters. For example, Peter Pan, Captain Planet, The White Ranger, One of the Gargoyles, and All of the Ninja Turtles. However, since I was 8 years old at the time, I think we can chalk it up to childhood silliness and not delusional psychosis.

Childhood infatuations aside, it would appear that while everyone else is getting told they look like Liv Tyler and Megan Fox (I still don't get the appeal there), and that chick from Firefly, I am being showered with such connections as, The Mom from the Incredibles, Japanese Anime, and of course the most popular and often heard choice, Astrid from How to Train Your Dragon (pictured above).  If I had a nickle for every time someone pointed out this similarity, I would be able to comfortably keep myself in penny candy for a LONG time. Ironically however, it would seem that my face, though perfectly suited for animated females, is hugely successful for movies, and epically repugnant for prospective suitors. Unless you count anyone who would attend Comic-Con...and I don't.

If the physical similarity wasn't enough to send them screaming for a realty TV show, then my line of work seems to be enough to cause full blown Bond Girl Binges.  I am an actor, but ironically, or not so much, I am never cast as the leading lady or the beauty that the boys fall over themselves to be with, NOPE, more typically, I can be found playing the comedic relief in the form of the old woman with lentil bean bag breasts, or the ruff and tumble tom-boy who couldn't tell couture from cobalt. I'm not complaining about my parts mind you. I love to make people laugh, and I've been told I am not half bad at it. I am one of only a handful of women in Utah that is invited to play with the local professional Improv troops, and feel confident in holding my own against the men folk. I use to think that guys would admire a girl who was quick witted and could keep of in a verbal jousting match....buuuuuuttttttttt now I'm thinking that I might have been wrong. Apparently, I'm too clever for my own good, apparently I am too good at being one of the boys; not even my bosoms seem to compensate now. (My real ones, not the lentil bags).

At any rate, I'm proud of my accomplishments in the world of comedy and character work, even if it is only in Utah. The little niche I have carved out for myself suites me just fine on a strictly artistic level, but as you might have guessed from my earlier comments, it hasn't brought much interest in way of romantic inclinations. Can't say as though I blame them though....lentil bean bag breasts are probably not the most enticing of visions. I guess I just wish that men could look past the lentils and straight to my face.....which looks like a 12 year old cartoon viking.....I'm screwed.

Maybe Captain Planet is still available.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

What's In a Voice?

I love C.S. Lewis. I am convinced that his book Mere Christianity was a big part of what brought me back from my "Do I even believe in God?" era. The way that he intellectually lays out the likely-hood of a higher power is brilliant.  I have also enjoyed his works of fiction including the Narnia series.  His representation of Christ as Aslan struck me in a deep and impactful way.  When I watched the scene where Aslan is being tortured and eventually murdered in place of one of the children, it made the atonement of Christ real to me in a way that over 20 years of Sunday school lessons never had.

I have to admit though, part of what made the character of Aslan so compelling to me, was the voice that Liam Neeson lended to bring Aslan to life.  There is just something about his voice. It is so powerful and sure and commanding, and yet so gentle and comforting. I guess it just stands to reason that he would be chosen to be the voice of Christ because every attribute I just listed are attributes that most would associate with the nature of Christ.

All of this got me to wondering, what is it about certain voices that compel us to place certain attributes upon them. Much like Romeo once asked, "What's in a name?", I would now ask, What's in a voice?

For example, ever noticed that every villain is either British or otherwise European? Every noticed how the "wise" character often tends to be Asian or Indian?  And while this may just be an American interpretation, I believe that there is a sort of universal standard of voice categorization. 

Voices are like songs, and each voice has it's own unique melody. 

Ever broken up with someone because you just couldn't stand the tone or timber of their voice? It seems silly but it's actually a legit aspect of attraction with biological roots. Which also makes me wonder if the reason we always seem to have God and Jesus characters with very similar voice sounds, is because somewhere inside of us, there is a part that still remembers what they sounded like.

 So when we hear people like Liam, it is like we are in a police station doing a voice identification line up. We can't see the suspects, but the cop asks us to identify the man in question (in this case Christ) based solely off of the sound of his voice.  So let's imagine that in this voice line up we have Liam Neeson, Jeff Foxworthy, Gilbert Gottfried, and Connan O'Brien. The cop asks each of the men to repeat the line, “I have known you long. Do you know me?”, and then asks you to identify which is Christ.

Now, it may all just be social conditioning, or Hollywood brainwashing, but I am guessing that regardless of the origin, most people are going to finger good ol' Liam as the culprit.  There is just something about his voice.

I have had several experiences in my life where something I saw or heard seemed to strike a chord deep inside of me, a part of me that feels much older than my 29 years. I can't explain it, but I love it when it happens. It's like remembering without memory, it feels like coming home.

And while I know I am generalizing and maybe even minimizing the true scope and grandure that is the voice of God....(I hear tell rumors that mere mortals can scarcely experience His voice without shriveling up like a California Raisin).... I think that on a very earth bound and slightly watered down way, we can be given...hints...as it were, glimpses maybe, subtle ques that remind us of things we have always known, and still know, but don't know that we know, until something as simple as a voice reminds us.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Left Behind

It has recently been brought to my attention that my blog has strayed a bit from its original intention.  Apparently, the people want to hear more about what it means to be an anxious white virgin. While I have enjoyed my pseudo philosophical and humorous rants, I guess it is time to give the people what they want.

Submitted for your approval, I now present: Left Behind

In many parts of the world, and most parts of the country, a good portion of the population doesn't start thinking about marriage until around age thirty, here in Utah......not so much the case.  At age 29, my single status has earned me the title of "older" single adult. Although technically speaking, in the churches eyes, I have till age 31 before it becomes official. But by all accounts, I am well past my prime. And you know what doesn't help or make me feel better? When people point out the fact that this is only a Utah thing and anywhere else in the country I would be totally normal. As if to say, Don't worry, it's only in Utah that you are a freak. Can you really blame a girl for starting to feel like a pound puppy?

The fact of the matter is, it doesn't matter if the world is different outside of Utah, because the reality is, I LIVE in Utah. Yes I could leave, and if something took me away from here I wouldn't be oppose to it, but as it stands, I am on the home stretch of getting my degree finally finished, and so I am pretty much tied here for the next year. So for better or worse, Utah is what I got to work with for now.

I must admit, back in my day....did I just say back in my day?.......siiiiiggggghhhhh

Back in my day, when I was "young" and whatever, I enjoyed quite a bit of dating.  I don't know why, but men seemed to be willing to take me out. I think it may have something to do with my hip to waist to bust ratio, but whoever can really know these things right? For whatever reason, I found myself living the high life, and I ignorantly believed that the days of milk and honey would never end.  But it wasn't just me, it seemed like all of the kids my age were in the same place in their lives too. We were all just datin' up a storm and loving every minute of it. Sure marriage was always a thought in the back of our minds, and sure, there were those few who went off of the market almost immediately after high school, but for the most part, we were all just dating and enjoying being single.

But then things began to change. Slowly at first, and then like a rock rolling down hill, all the while gaining speed and momentum.  The rock was marriage, and one by one, my friends climbed aboard. At first it was one wedding invite every couple of months....then every other month, and now, I'm getting several of these bad boys a month. And while I am thrilled each one of my friends and family who have finally found "the one", I also would be lying if I said there wasn't a small part of me that wonders....when am I going to be the sender instead of the perpetual receiver? When is it going to be my turn?

As it stands today, the greater majority of my friends and relatives have found their special someone and settled down. Many of them have started families and bought homes and....well....moved forward, progressed. And yet...here I am. Day after day, month after month, year after year. I have dated, fallen in love, broken some hearts and had my heart broken, but for whatever reason, I have yet to find someone for who the stars fall into their proper places and we go skipping off into the eternal sunset together. Is it any wonder that a person in my position might start to feel a little...left behind? A little anxious? Maybe even a little broken?

I keep busy with this or that, I smile, I laugh, I enjoy life, but there is an undeniable emptiness inside of me at times. I long for that deeper connection, for someone who can not only be my best friend, but my lover as well. I want a companion, a partner in crime. I want the sum that is going to make the whole greater than it's individual parts. I'm not saying I'm not a whole person my own, but you can be totally whole and still totally lonely.

"They" say, be patient, "they" say, don't worry, it will happen for you, "they" say, have faith, keep your chin up, he is out there, you have time, you are young. And ALL of these may very well be true, but when all you see around you is the evidence that everyone else seems to be getting it right, making it happen, and moving on...well...sometimes it's hard to have such an epically optimistic perspective. I guess this shows a tremendous lack of faith on my part, well, it is what it is. Nobody is perfect.

But for now, all I can do is attend and support the weddings of those I love, send congrats on baby arrivals, and watch the ever unfolding live action journal that is Facebook as I see everyone around me moving forward, while I sit here and wait...what else can I do? I can continue to progress in other ways it is true, and that is what I am doing, but there are certain dances that require a partner...and at least for right now...and for who knows how long...that is a dance I am forced to sit out of.

Don't worry, you guys go on ahead, I'll catch up....

Thursday, April 5, 2012

The Arch Nemesis List

Fondest greetings to you all. Did you think that I had left you for good?

Thank you for allowing me my Theater Kid Nerd Out moment.

....aaaaaaAAAAAHHHHHHHHH....NERD OUT! The Geek! Is Chic!

Ok, moving on.

So I feel a little rusty for some reason, so let's ease back into this like an old man eases into his Depends.

Today, we are going to discuss Arch Nemesis..es...s...of which I have several official and many other pending. You may recall me mentioning them before, but just to recap, here is the official list as it currently stands.


FRUIT
(If you would like to learn more please refer to the first Observations of an Anxious White Virgin post. But in short, fruit is deceitful and evil)


NESTING CHAIRS
(I Don't know what maniacal mind came up with these atrocities trying to pass themselves off as leisure furniture, but I'm fairly convinced that there is a spot in outer darkness reserved especially for them)

AUTOMATIC FLUSHING TOILETS
There are few things more unpleasant, few things that inspire more anxiety, few things that can really ruin your day, then the sensation of a premature and unsolicited toilet flush while you are mid....evacuation.

I don't know about you, but I live in America, land of the free, and as such, I am guaranteed certain unalienable rights including but not limited to the right to free speech, the right to bare arms, and the right to not have something akin to the aquatic fountain displays outside of the Belagio occur beneath my bare necessities.

But aside from my comfort and peace of mind, I find no practical purpose for these devices either. If conserving water is the goal then they have failed on an epic scale. It's simple math; when I finish my business, I flush...once. But this...thing....that thinks it knows better than me about proper and appropriate evacuation time allotment, has been know to flush 2, 3, even 4 times during the course of a single encounter. Talk about killing flipper and destroying the rain forest.

Also, I don't buy this whole....Oh, it's so you don't have to touch a filthy toilet lever. Come on, really? Really? Because for as many times as it prematurely proceeds without my consent, it will fail to deploy at all, leaving me to do the "please for the love of Pete go off!!!" dance in front of the little sensor with my pants down around my ankles! You know what? Give me the lever, I will risk the germs, because hey.....There is a FREAKING SINK complete with anti-bacterial (aka) GERM KILLING SOAP not but mere steps away.

Brothers, Sisters, I implore you to stand up with me against this unspeakable scourge. Let us unite and rise up! Let us take back our freedom!! Wallace was right:

"Aye, fight and you may (get wet). Run, and you'll (stay dry)... at least a while. And dying in your beds, many years from now, would you be willin' to trade ALL the days, from this day to that, for one chance, just one chance, to come back here and tell our enemies that they may take our (Flushes), but they'll never take... OUR FREEDOM!"

*The following propaganda was brought to you the Defend Your Right To Flush Foundation*
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