Friday, June 18, 2010

This is core, strength and balance.

Remember how page 159 was "A school" and I got to pretend that I was a teacher and create a school full of things I would teach about?
Well This is Not a Book has come to life!.... kinda.

But, as I said in the last post, one of my new jobs is a gym group exercise instructor! This is something I have always wanted to do, because its fun, you help people, and you get to exercise at the same time! And now I get to teach 1 class a week (and might be teaching 2 once I get back from vacation in July).
I get to make up my own workouts, put together my own music, and design the class in any way that I want to. Which is sick.

The class that I am currently teaching is called "Core, Strength and Balance." Which basically sums up everything exercise-related. So I can basically do whatever I want in this class!

I've taught 2 classes so far, and although its nice to have some sort of routine, I tried to do different exercises in both so that people don't get bored and get a wide variety of exercises to learn. I want to put in more time to the class and really make up full routines that match the music and do research about the areas of the body and muscles that I am training...but I don't have the time! So for now I am just winging it...going off of my general knowledge from being an athlete for my entire life. Which has worked well so far. But I do plan on putting more effort into it and being a fully knowledgeable, helpful teacher and getting everybody in the best shape of their lives! While obviously having fun at the same time. Cuz you know me, I'm all about having fun :P

So for anybody in Amherst with a membership to the Recreation Center: Come to my class! Every Wednesday from 3-400 pm (minus next week when Im in Finland) and I promise to improve your core, your strength, and your balance like nobody ever has before ;)

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

This is work, believe it or not.


I am going to visit one of my best friends and roommates in Finland in 5 days! I am SO excited. But this is a rather expensive little vacation of mine and I plan on spending all my money once I'm there. So for the last month I have been working my butt off to save up my money. Working so much that I cant even blog!

I've been waitressing which, I think, is a lot of fun. And once you stop screwing up orders, you make pretty good money. So I do that about 4 days a week...they're short shifts though; 11-5am or 5-10pm. And then I work at the gym on campus. I only do 3 shifts a week but they are unfortunately at 645 in the morning! Every Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday! This wouldn't be so bad if I were adjusted to it; but with a night time waitressing job and a nighttime based college social life, its pretty difficult for me to wake up at 6 when I don't go to bed until after 1am and when my body has been incapable of taking naps since as long as I can remember.

And then two weeks ago I was also hired at the gym as an exercise class instructor. I teach a class every Wednesday and I will be starting up one on Fridays too!


So in total... I'm working about 40 hours a week; which is totally normal. But its not steady; its not Monday-Friday 9-5...in fact, I've been working 7 days a week because my two jobs like to schedule me on opposite days! But like I said... I want money for Finland! So I really don't care right now.

And although waitressing can be difficult sometimes when its busy, my job at the gym is SOOOO easy that I really cant even call it work.
In fact, I'm at work right now.
Yeah..I'm getting paid to do this right now :)
Every Tuesday I work the "equipment checkout" at the gym... meaning I get to sit down at a computer, go online if I want, read a book if I want, blog if I want... and all I have to do is give people a lock or a basketball or a bath towel if they ask me for it. Oh, and I have to fold all of our towels once they are done in the wash. So the only actual "work" that I have to do here is getting enough motivation to wake up and get here at 6 in the morning!! After that, its a breeze ;)
Wednesday and Thursday mornings aren't quite so easy, because there are no computers or books involved. I'm a floor supervisor; so I just walk around and talk to other people and workers and make sure everything is going okay in the gym. So I would say that the hardest part of that job is finding things to entertain me for over 4 hours!


"Working hard, or hardly working" Both seem to apply to me right now.
In fact page 177 and 178 is "A kit for attending boring events" and I purposely brought it to work with me this morning so that I could do it! The "Not a Book" had a crossword puzzle for me to solve, a picture for me to color, and a space for me to play a modified version of I-spy ... I think this page was meant to accompany somebody who was stuck at a boring event such as meeting, or waiting for a bus, or jury duty ... but for me it was meant to accompany me at work :) It honestly only helped pass the time for about 12 minutes. But hey, its better than nothing!

Monday, May 24, 2010

This is a a wicked long title just to give you a preview of what is to come in the following blog post, you'll understand once you start reading it!

Page 148 is a System. I had to chose one word from each page of This is Not a Book to form a very long sentence.

This was SO hard. Especially because every page says almost the same words ... "This is not a book. This is a ***" Not many verbs in there. And since I'm supposed to make a really long sentence, it'd be convenient for some conjunction words to be available for use. Like and or but or, or! But no. This is not a book wanted to make it very difficult for me to make a long run on sentence.

But I have to say... I pulled it off pretty well. I tried to keep a theme going so that it made some sort of sense. It's not the worst. But certainly not the best either. Anyway, here it is:

A note is a mark of time, a challenge, thought; write notes immediately, permanently; write a blank page, profile, list, shape and fill a fat book; add message and stash your notes about something random to instruct friends to embellish facts, writing between comments with a variety of things well read is a transition, or a sentence, to describe a page; document a moment, go to a portable performance to list music your leader could write to.



Yes. Take my super long run on sentence's advice and write, write, write!!! But preferably not run-on sentences, because not only are they are grammatically incorrect but they also don't make any sense and are wicked annoying.

Monday, May 17, 2010

This is my obsession with flowers


A few days ago there was a page in the (not a) book in which I had to collect 5 things to satisfy each of the 5 senses.
It was a beautiful day so I was obviously sunbathing on my deck, enjoying the first few days of my summer vacation, soaking up the sun and being beyond content with life. So as I look around my pretty back yard the first thing that comes to my mind is:
SIGHT - FLOWERS!!!
I love flowers! They are so pretty. I want to look at them every day!
And then I move on to the next sense...

SMELL - FLOWERSSSSS!!
I love smelling flowers! They smell so pretty! I want to smell them every day!
And then I move on to the next sense...

TOUCH - FLOWERSSSSSSSSSSSSS!
I love touching flowers! The petals are so soft! I want to touch them every day!
And then I move on to the next sense ...

TASTE -
...well, there was this one time at my aunt's wedding where a flower was placed on top of our plates of very expensive and quite delicious steak; we questioned our waiter about there being a flower on our steak and he said they were completely edible (although mostly used for visual appeal). So my cousin tried it first. And my sisters, cousins, and I all followed with a small nibble shortly after... and hence:
TASTE - FLOWERSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS!
So then I moved on to the next sense...

HEAR -
.... shoot. As much as I really love flowers, you can't really hear them :(
Oh wait! Flowers have leaves. And when the leaves fall off the flower and die, they get crunchy. And then you can crunch 'em and crunch 'em and crunch 'em and they make a GREAT crunching sound .... and hence:
HEAR - FLOWERSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS!

Flowers have successfully satisfied all of my 5 senses. Meaning they are all you need in life. Not love, not money, not even food. Just flowers. (Well....maybe some chocolate too ;)
So for all of you boys out there who still refuse to understand why girls like getting flowers, and pull silly stunts such as:
a. Buying us potted plants instead of cut flowers because plants don't die as fast [a good idea in theory. And I would still like to get a plant. But only in addition to the flowers; not in place of them].
b. Only get us flowers on special occasions such as Valentines Day when we know you are only getting them for us because you feel like you have to.
c. Getting us a fake flower so that it won't die [similar to the potted plant theory. But it doesn't smell or feel real so it just doesn't have the same effect.]
d. Only getting us flowers when you are trying to apologize or win us over. Now they are "sorry" flowers, not "happy" flowers and every time us girls look at them we just get sad that something went so wrong that you had to buy us those just to make up for it...
e. (the worst possible thing a guy could do) Never give a girl a flower...


Now, I can only speak for myself.... but I know for a fact that every girl LOVES flowers; just possibly not quite to the same extent that I do...
But if you are a boy that does any of the above listed actions, I will tell you one time, and one time only:

It doesn't need to be a dozen roses. It doesn't need to be a special occasion. Just pick a dandelion from my front yard on a Tuesday morning and put it in my hair, and I will probably fall instantly in love with you. And if that freaks you out, don't worry... because it't not actually you that I love...it's the flowers :P I really really really love flowers!

Monday, May 10, 2010

This is an apology

I have not blogged in 20 days!
Tino, thank you for always reading and for being angry at me for not blogging in so long :) So last night, after our talk two days ago, about how I'm slacking on my blog, the thought crossed my mind that I would blog tonight! BUT thennnn at about 11:30 pm my friend started talking to me and was like "So, are you ready for tomorrow?"
So I was like ... "Of course! ...What's tomorrow?"
- "Our final."
- "Huh? No, our final is Tuesday."
- "Noooooo it's tomorrow."
- "No its Tuesday."
- "No it's tomorrow."
- (look on Spire account) .... "Omg. It's tomorrow."

He was right. My final is tomorrow and I haven't studied at all! I thought I had a full day of studying. And instead I had a few hours...
SO the blogging was put on hold.
I crammed.
And in the end, it all worked out because I'm pretty sure I A-ced it. Which was necessary for my confidence since I felt like the dumbest girl in the world for almost forgetting I had a final in the first place! But that's besides the point.
NOW I am done with school an entire day earlier than I thought! So now I am blogging :)

But, about nothing of importance. I've done some things in this is not a book. But nothing too memorable. Plus its in the other room and I am way to lazy to get up and go get it. Its summer baby. Time to relax 8-)

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

This is my idea of learning :)

I had an awesome weekend!
So now I will brag :)

Last Friday I traveled down to Princeton NJ with the track team for a meet and stayed until Saturday night. Everything went pretty well, the meet was fun, and Princeton is gorgeous. Then Saturday night I saw some friends. Sunday I slept in late, went grocery shopping, then had a barbecue and concert at my house! The bands that played were awesome, we had a fire going, food...great time all around. Then Monday morning I went to the Boston Marathon with my mom and brother. It was a beautiful day and the spirits were high in Boston. My dad ran great and I am SO proud of him. I know a lot of people go to the marathon to get drunk and party in the streets (which sounds totally fun!) But for me its a totally different experience. My dad puts so much into running; he trains all winter long, putting in the miles early on a Saturday morning or late at night after a long day of work....we talk about his runs over dinner; he texts me with his splits....anyway, what I'm trying to get at here is that watching him run by me for all of 6 seconds during his 3hour and 30minute race is worth the trip every year.

Sooo that about wraps up the awesomeness of my weekend. Track is fun; love my friends; went to NJ and Boston; proud of my dad.
And now back to school. Ughhhh.

Page 159: This is School.
SERIOUSLY?! I am sick of school! I don't want to do all this work. I just want a repeat of my awesome weekend over and over and over again for the rest of my life! No more work. No more deadlines. No more projects. Just fun and happiness and sunshine and rainbowssssssssss!
But wait...page 159 says that if I could teach any class, what would it be?
Hmmmm....so I get to make school whatever I want it to be? Maybe this isn't so bad. I guess in that case, I would teach a class about fun and happiness and sunshine and rainbows!

But seriously...If I could teach a class I would want to teach something that makes people happy. And out of my own personal experiences, what makes me happy is when I feel physically and mentally healthy. When I am free of physical pain and mental stress. When I'm clear headed and energized.

So I would teach a class that teaches people how to reach physical and mental peace.

I'd start off with nutrition. We'd do fun things about nutrition. Not just study it...we'd do it. We'd try all kinds of exotic foods and do sensory evaluations to see how it makes us feel. How it nourishes and energizes our bodies and how it satisfies our minds and cravings. Then we'd use our energized bodies to do something physical. Nothing physical that adds stress to our lives; but something physical that makes us feel good. I would definitely teach yoga because its a practice that uses the body physically to connect with your mind mentally; so that when you are good at it...they are not two separate things at all. The mind and body are one in the same.
In this class we'd study outside.
We'd make our own garden outside and grow vegetables and then we'd have cooking class using our own organic ingredients.

(hehe downward dog yoga while planing tomatoes. Thats so me)

Oh mannnn. School would be great if I could just chill outside with friends growing tomatoes and doing yoga. I'd be the healthiest happiest person ever :)


...so who wants to be the first to enroll in my class? :)

Monday, April 5, 2010

This is what I do with power ... I let it go!

Page 141 is a "PLOT TO RULE THE WORLD."
If I Lindsey Pfau could rule the world, I would make the following changes:

Forbid anybody or any group to ever rule the world, including myself, now and in the future until the end of time.
Yes, I would not allow me to rule the world.


The world doesn't need to be ruled. It needs to be free. It needs to do its own thing. And it would be impossible for somebody to rule the world anyway. Not only can you have no control over the actions, thoughts, and life of another person...but you can't have control over the actions, thoughts, and lives of hundreds of billions of people! And never mind people; how many times have you woken up and the rain put a damper on your day; or the sun made you smile? How can you rule the world when it is actually the world that rules you?? ... think about it ;)

Page 141 reminds me of a prompt for a high school English paper. It's trying to get me to think and be creative. It's trying to give me the opportunity to express myself and let my ideas flourish.
And so some strict high school teacher may fail me for my realistic approach to the question and say that I should use this opportunity to let my imagination flow and let my thoughts be heard.

And so, I will defend my realistic approach by saying that it goes beyond the fact that I don't think I am capable of ruling the world (for a plethora of reasons. The first being that I am blonde).
But lately I've had this new appreciation for the world.
You know that feeling when you are standing by the ocean; just looking out; waves crashing at your feet. And whether you are alone on a private beach, or at a crowded beach with little kids screaming and building sandcastles right next to you ... you can take yourself away from life for a moment and just stand there; looking out at the ocean. And you get this overwhelming feeling of everything the world has seen and been through...
Who else has stood in this very spot that you are in now? Who else has looked out at this same ocean view? Who else is looking at it right at this very moment? Who will look at it in the future? What will be here once I turn around and leave? Will the waves still crash once I turn around? Have they always done this?

Sometimes people get this feeling when they are looking at the stars too. And questions beyond the earth arise. How long ago did that light from the stars shine down on me? Are those stars even here now in real time? What else is out there?

I think these are pretty normal questions that everybody asks themselves at some point. And the funny part is...the past few weeks I've been getting the same feeling as standing by the ocean side, or looking at the stars, simply by waking up in the morning!

I wake up and feel like "Wow-another day is here. And I get to live in it." Its MY life...but I live it in this world that is shared by all of us. And none of us own it. It does its own thing. And it allows us to live in it.

So NO, I do not want anybody, including me, to rule the world. I think the world should rule us. And we should be thankful for that. Its pretty generous of the world to let us live in it =) So as a return of favors to the world, for being so generous and kind allowing us to live in the world, I officially forbid anybody from ever ruling the world from here on out!

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

This is a Tool (hey now, thats not nice)

Page 143 I had to come up with 50 different ways that This is Not a Book can be used as a tool or a utensil of some sort.
1. it can be used as a paper weight
2. it can be used as a shield to protect yourself
3. it can be used as a mask to hide your face behind
4. it can be used as an inspirational tool for blogging
5. used as a placeholder for other things.
6. storage place to hold little things like notes and ribbons.
7. a bookmark for other books
....
Those are things that I thought of on the spot, basically because I've used it for those things before. And then I was thinking of all the things I've done with the book so far... like every page is something different. Because, lets face it here guys: This is NOT a Book. It's something else. Its everything else. Every page is something different!

8. it is a tool to pass notes back and forth with friends (like I did on page 50 with Brian Tino)
9. a recording device tool (page 2 and 124)
10. an extra tool-y friend (page 46)
11. a tool to test endurance of people (page 7).
12. an escaping tool (page 9.77,129)
13. A gardening tool for growing ideas (page 12)
14. A tool to annoy people who are tools ( page 14)
15. A desk organizing tool (page 16)
16. a tool to help make quick decisions and do spontaneous things (page 19)
17. a utensil to make things disappear (page22)
18. an artists tool (page 26)
19. a thought expressing utensil (page 37)
20. a utensil for performing physics experiments (page41)
21. a communication tool....
22. a research utensil....
23. an inventory utensil....


I won't bore you with reading all 50 things that I have used this (not a) book for because since I blog about it, you should already know everything I've used it for!

This book claims NOT to be a book. Which would make one wonder...if its not a book, then what is it? And instead of giving you a clear answer...I can give you 50!

But there are a few uses of This is NOT a Book that I find particularly helpful in my life and that I used quite frequently.
I often use it as a tool to think creatively and express my thoughts.
I use it as a tool to find inspiration for blogging.
I use it as a tool to do things for no reason but for enjoyment
I use it to combine reality and fiction
I use it as a tool for introspection
I use it to find meaning in the little things in life

And that's all that really matters to me. Whether it is a book or not. Or a recording device. Or a surfboard. Or a postcard... It's what I make of it.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

This is random

Page 156: This is a Random Adventure

First off I'd like to say that my sisters and mom think that I say the word random a lot. Apparently I always think things are random. I personally don't notice it that much ... but I think that in general, I just find life's happenings random.

Webster's Online Dictionary of Random: Lacking a definite plan, purpose, or pattern.

As much as we try to make sense out of things ... as much as we try to find reason behind why people do things, why people feel things, how our blood flows, why the grass is green ... I truly and honestly feel like its all just random! It's just how life is.

Even if you have a plan for your day; a purpose of going to school to get a degree; or a pattern of waking up at 8am every morning ... everything that happens around these plans, purposes, and patterns is still random. You can plan to do things in your day, but the day will happen and play itself out randomly and you have no control over it. For example, you can plan to go to the gym at 2, but you can't plan that today running on the treadmill will feel slightly harder than it did yesterday and that your shoelace comes untied at mile 1.7 and a drop of sweet is falling perfectly at the tip of your nose, and you don't see anyone at the gym today even though you ran into 3 people there yesterday .... I think that all of these things are random. No matter how hard you try, you could never plan to have that exact same experience again.

I suppose that others (including my mom and my sisters) would just say that these things are normal. And I do too. They are normal. They're things that happen in life. And I think life is random. So that's why I say it a lot.

Moving onnnnn... like I said page 156 is a Random Adventure. At first glance I would say that this is not actually random because I am doing this adventure because the book told me to (a purpose) and I did exactly what it told me to do (the plan): I went outside, walked until I saw something red, took ten steps from that location, and looked down at my feet to describe what I see.

However the adventure itself is still random. Because I don't know what is going to happen here. As much as you try to stick to a plan, you can never predict what will happen along the way.

So as I stuck to this plan, my right iPod earphone randomly fell out.
I randomly sniffed.
And a few random cars drove by.
I have no idea why, I don't know the purpose for any of that happening, and I didn't plan on any of it happening.

Then when I reached my ten steps after the red street sign ... I saw a random crack in the sidewalk. It was pretty big. The crack spread all the way from the left to the right side of the sidewalk. The left side of crack was wider than the right. The shape was random. Its direction was random. It wasn't straight or smooth .... just a big old crack. Right in the middle of where I was trying to walk.

Isn't it kind of random that EXACTLY 10 steps led me to step on this crack? I think it is. I wasn't even a centimeter over or under. I didn't lengthen my stride or take baby steps. I just walked 10 steps and randomly stepped on this big crack.

And in my head, I just thought to myself, "yeah...I would step on a crack right now." Life is full of cracks. Bumps. Holes. Life is full of ruts that get in the way of your path.
And I can't plan on when they will come. I can't rationalize a purpose as to why they are there. And I don't show any patterns as to how I deal with them when they come or how I can avoid them in the future...

These cracks and bumps and holes in life just come randomly.
And then randomly, I decided that I had enough time dwelling on this crack in the sidewalk, and I continued walking.
I can't predict when I will decide to walk away from the cracks in life, because I can't plan on anything in life. But just as random as they come to me, they will randomly leave somehow...

Saturday, March 20, 2010

a REAL spring break?!

College spring break. In March.
For those of us who have lived in New England their whole lives, we know... March is NOT spring.
Last year for spring break, I went to Florida. It was the greatest thing ever to get to nice weather for a week. But this year it didn't happen. But I feel so overwhelmed with school, trying to find a job, money ... that the truth is: going home and doing close to nothing was everything I ever dreamed of. And to top it off, the last three days have hit 70 degrees.

70 DEGREES! In Massachusetts. In March. I'm pretty sure it snowed on Easter last year...and yet it was over 70 today. Who needs Florida when I can grow my freckles right in my front yard! (Yes, I said grow my freckles. They grow in the sun. Or are re-born. They just hide for the winter time and then come spring/summer/March they POP back out!)

Anyway.. I took advantage of this beautiful weather by being outside as much as possible. So yesterday I went to the park for a nice walk by myself.
A) I needed to blow off steam after being rudely talked to by a CVS worker, but wasn't ready to exercise yet because I just ate breakfast and
B) I really had nothing else to do. Mom and Dad were working, brother in school, friends non-existent ...

I brought along NOT a Book because I had a page in mind I could do:
page 133-134:
A MULTI DIRECTIONAL UNIT
1. Go to a place you would like to explore
2. Open This is NOT a Book flat
3. Place on ground. Spin
4. Move in the direction of the arrow (there was a giant arrow on the page saying "Go this way")
5. Repeat whenever a choice of direction presents itself.

So I did. Which is risky in a big forest park. It was surely an adventure. The first choice I came across was a 3 way stop in which there was a paved road of the path well traveled; a paved road which was blocked off; and a dirt path leading who knows where...
And the arrow pointed me to the dirt path leading who knows where.
Well after 5 minutes, you know where it lead??
Some body's backyard. Ya. I turned around, and followed the paved road of the path well traveled.
Next there was a really cool looking dirt path...but the arrow told me to keep on the paved road of the path well traveled.
Next a T in the road. Arrow told me to follow the road leading to "Trestle Pavilion". Which I did, until the next directional change where the arrow led me to the restrooms.
I was appreciative of the arrow to consider my biological needs on our adventure.
After a quick restroom break, the arrow led me to the pond, which was actually a very very sad dried up measly little pond. Then to a parking lot, to a path into the woods, to a bridge, to another bridge, to the riverbank.
I had to turn around at the riverbank, and went further into the woods, up a steep steep hill, and was stuck at a dead end at the remnants of a concrete bridge.

I dillydallied here and then took out my ITINERARY on PAGE 120:
1. Go to the closest park ... check
2. Spend 10 minutes looking at the sky. What do you see?
.... ummm I saw the sky.
.... there were no clouds, leafless tree tops were partly in my view.
3. Document yourself standing under a tree ... check
4. Arrange something you find into a circle
.... I made some weird circle out of little sticks, rocks and acorns.
5. List the number of people you see ... I saw 12 people and 3 dogs total on my park trip
6. Leave something of yours in a secret location

... well all I had with me was my cell phone, camera, and NOT of book. NONE of which I was going to leave behind. Otherwise, I had paper, pen, plastic comb ... that would all be trash if I left it in a park!! BUT then I remembered that page 118 was a: PUBLIC SPACE, where my friends were allowed to add anything they wanted to the page. And one of my friends attached a candy cane. (Yes, I've had a candy cane inside my book for over 2 months now). So I broke off a piece of the cane and left it in the middle of my circle because its food, so its not littering. And I hope that maybe some cute lucky squirrel came across it and enjoyed a special treat :)

Anyway, it was about this point were I honestly felt a little bit lost in the woods. And I decided that its probably not a good idea to take full direction from an arrow on a book that's not even a book. So I used my own brain, and backtracked and made my way safely out of the woods.

Well, its my last day of spring break and I'm already stressing about school work again :-/
Which is why I'm going to go to bed thinking about my walk in the park. Thinking about how no matter how much homework I have... the trees will keep growing, The ground will always be under me. And, no matter which path I choose to go, I will always have the choice.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

This is the unfortunate events of a quite fortunate girl - looks long but trust me you'll laugh. Worth reading even just to feel better about yourself

I usually like to post at least once a week, sometimes two or three. But some quite unfortunate events have occurred to me recently that have prevented me from doing so. And even in the times when I was physically able to blog, I was mentally unable to, due to the stresses of these unfortunate events.

I will first start off with technology. Yes, gosh darn technology. My generation is SO dependent on it. And when it fails you, it is as if you no longer belong to the world. You are lost. You can't figure things out. And you are too distracted by the fact that you are lost to even begin to start finding yourself again.

So were going to start off my series of most unfortunate technological events with about 2 and 1/2 weeks ago. There was a big snowstorm, a wire fell from our house, and I did not have Internet or cable for over 2 days. Now is this the end of the world? No. We could still watch movies, and go to the library or our friends houses for Internet. Mostly we just chilled without it, sort of taking it as an opportunity to not have to rely on Internet. But it felt off. As me and my roommates sat and talked, we couldn't just IM somebody or check wikipedia real quick or do our homework which is 95% online these day. We couldn't do what we wanted, when we wanted. It was inconvenient.

Then during those same 2 days that Internet and cable was gone, my phone mysteriously broke for about 8 hours. Just shut off. I had no way of contacting anybody except for my roommates at home. Turns out something was just wrong with my charger and I was able to fix it. And then 3 days later ... my computer mysteriously died. For 24 hours, it just decided to rest and not turn on. Which meant I was freaking out about my whole life that is stored on that computer and not knowing whether I would ever get it back or not. But I did. Thank goodness. 24 hours later it decided it was done resting and came back to me.

Then a few days later, I left my USB disc in a computer classroom which was then locked. About 10 minutes later I went to give my oral presentation with a power point that was on the USB disc...and I didn't have it. (thank goodness I also saved it on the web! So I then had to log online and save it to my friends USB disc) Moral of the story: without a friend's USB disc and the Internet I would have been screwed. Then the next day I retrieved my USB disc... only to find it is now broken. Won't work. So all that homework saved on there must be re-done. That night our power went out again. I had to go to the library to do my homework.

And for the best of all ... last Wednesday... I have a test in just a few minutes, I really have to pee. I check my phone, its 10:08. The test is at 10:10. I put my phone in my coat pocket, sprint to the bathroom, pee, turn, flush the toilet, and PLOP, FLUSH, WOOSH, CLUNK! My phone is gone.
Down the toilet.
Gone in the blink of an eye.
That toilet just sucked it right up.
I stared at it for a second or two. Nothing else was really going through my mind besides "That just happened."
Then I had to run off to my test where the first 10 minutes of it i just stared at my paper, not even holding my pencil, saying to myself "That just happened. Fuck. That just happened."

I spent the next 3 days without a phone. I now have my dad's old phone, but no numbers in it. I also was gone for the whole weekend visiting my sister so I haven't been online in 5 days....

My life has just felt so discombobulated for the last 2 weeks. I can't keep up with everyone else. I'm just off doing my own thing with nobody knowing where I am or what I'm doing. I went to practice whenever I could since I didn't get emails about when I was supposed to go. I did my own workouts since I didn't get emails about what the workouts were. My mom was worried sick and not sleeping at night because she had no way of contacting me to make sure I was alive. We had people over our house and I didn't invite anyone because I have no way of contacting friends. I have had to make plans way way ahead of time because the chances of people reaching me on the spot are quite small.
And you know what ... I'm alive.
I'm not alone. I'm safe. I'm happy I'm healthy.
I'm getting more ME time. More Lindsey time.
I only talk to friends who have found a way to contact me...which is nice. I'm not getting smothered by facebook updates 6 times a day. Emails can wait to be responded to. I gotten out of doing homework a lot. It's not the end of the world like everyone thinks it is. Somebody told me recently that their phone's battery was dieing and they were freaking out and I just laughed to myself and wish I could share with her the wisdom which I have recently attained: Life goes on without your phone!
:)


Oh and the best part of all:
I been bringing my Not A Book with me almost everywhere lately. I've known that with my screwy computer and technology in general failing for me that I wouldn't be able to blog ... but I assumed that a good old fashioned book and pen could survive in my life. So yesterday while waiting for my sister in NY I opened the next page and it says

THIS IS AN UNDERGROUND ORGANIZATION
1. Go to www.thisisnotabook.org
2. Enter this code: JT25261
3. Receive your mission.


Seriously??! Even the book needs a computer to survive in this generation now!
Well, NOT a Book, you will have to wait until I'm done with my technology free alone time before I return to you.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

This is the best birthday gift everrrrr

Happy Birthday Brian Tino!

What do I do when its my friends birthday?
I give him a silly note written in code and send him on a mission to figure it out and confuse the heck out of him! Duh!
It is clearly the only reasonable way to celebrate a birthday and show somebody that you truly care and appreciate them.

But seriously, it is my friends 21st birthday (Woo!). And in the fall when I was on a scavenger hunt for This is NOT a Book, one of the items on my list was a "secret code." And one night I looked in our mailbox, and there was a note written in some hieroglyphic-like code. A secret code! Me and my roommates de-coded it and discovered that my friend Brian wrote it for me since he knew I needed it for my scavenger hunt. Awww how sweet!


So one of my most recent pages actually instructed me to write a message with a secret code and give it to a friend. Of course I just had to do it for him.

The code is pretty funny, and actually took a bit of time to research. But its not hard to understand. I don't think he'll have trouble. I would tell you what it is, but I want to give him time to figure it out before he reads in on the Internet!

And actually, the instructions on how to de-code the message are hidden somewhere in This is NOT a book, which I left it at his house. So when he comes back from his big night out getting drunk legally for the first time he is .... probably not going to care at all. But maybe tomorrow morning!!!

The title of my message to him is: This is NOT a Gig. When he figures out the code, he'll know what "Gig" actually stands for...

As I left my (not a) book at his house I got a bit nervous because the last time that I left it somewhere overnight, it was never to be found again. But at the same time, I now know that despite the tragic disappearance of Not a Book #1, I did acquire NOT a Book #2 and was able to continue my booking/blogging adventure.
So I suppose you could say that I didn't learn my lesson because even though it was stolen once, I am continuing to put it at risk of thieves a second time. HOWEVER, I did learn a different valuable lesson: that even when bad things happen, life continues and there are alternative ways to make up for it and/or move on. So if NOT a Book #2 does not return to its rightful owner this time around, then I suppose its just an opportunity for me to begin NOT a Book #3. And it all works out in the end.

Not that I want to. I'd prefer Brian just figure out the code and return it to me. But I'm just trying to be optimistic here!

Friday, February 26, 2010

this is a really short rather pointless post! Hey, its friday!

The postcard was removed from my mailbox. Hence, it is en route. (cross your fingers!)

And my friend found a link for me with a whole bunch of palindromes! (Palindromes were a part of my scavenger hunt on page 33 for those of you are are like "why the heck do I want to read a list full of palindromes?!") I really could have used it back then. And so, in case you ever need to find a palindrome in the near future, I have already conveniently provided them for you. You're welcome.

They're funny. check em out:
http://www.stumbleupon.com/su/1nwirF/people.howstuffworks.com/15-palindromes.htm
My personal favorite: Go hang a salami. Im a lasagna hog.
Next time somebody says something snooty Im gonna be like "oh just go hang a salami!"
They'll be like "wwwhat?"
And I'll be like "yeah. Im a lasagna hog."
If you don't get it, it's not you... its me.

Monday, February 22, 2010

this is mail time mail time mail timeeeeee

video

Remember how I said a few weeks ago that despite what the book told me to do, I couldn't actually use it as an excuse to avoid things ...? Screw that. I am totally using this as my excuse to avoid studying right now. And I am enjoying every second of it :)

So page 150 is also "not a book." In fact, it is mail. Page 150 is a postcard. Have you ever made your own postcard? I never even thought about it. The book told me that all I have to do is glue the page to cardboard and send it out as mail! But I was a bit nervous ... U.S. mail can be pretty picky. Remember all those anthrax scares? Mail delivery became some sort of terrorist threat! And the whole system was shut down and all the innocent citizens didn't get their mail. Bills were overdue, pen pals lost touch and everybody was scared to open a letter because they feared for their lives.

I didn't want to risk any of this.

So I did what any curiously intelligent young female who wants to do the right thing would do ... I googled it. Wikipedia. eHow. You tube (that one was unsuccessful).

Turns out I was right. There are a few guidelines as to sending a postcard:
It has to be rectangular and no smaller than 3.5 inches tall, 5 inches long, and 0.0007 inches thick. But it can be NO larger than 4.5 inches tall, 6 inches long and 0.016 inches thick. No worries guys, I whipped out my ruler and made my postcard U.S. mail appropriate.

And just some fun facts here: The post card was patented in 1861 by John P. Charlton of Philadelphia. He did it because he was looking for an easier way to send mail. (I suppose at the time envelopes were difficult because they didn't have the cool sticky ones or licking ones that we have now...) AND the U.S. Post Office was the only company allowed to print and mail post cards until 1898; at which time Congress passed the Private Mailing Card Act which said it was okay for private companies to also sell and send postcards.
So this is good and bad for me. Good because I know its okay for other people other than the Post Office to send postcards ... bad because I'm not a company...I am an individual person trying to send a handmade postcard. But ehhh what the heck, I'm gonna send it anyway and see what happens!

I sent it to my sister Kristen in North Carolina. I did this because...well, she reads my blog and North Carolina seems cool. Also because I sent her a chain letter (which was page 37) and I don't know where it ever went. I know it went to North Carolina to see her and then to California to see her friend ... and then I never heard from it again :(

I figured that would happen. People seem to find chain letters a nuisance. But I thought mine was special.
I really though it would succeed and last until the end of time. But as the days continue and I hear no response, I'm afraid my chain letter may have just vanished into thin air ...

I hope that my homemade postcard makes it. And if it doesn't then I will buy a real postcard and send that. Because I've decided post cards are fun and I like them.

If this works, I will definitely be making my own post cards more often because you get to put whatever pretty picture that you want on the front of it! It's a fun craft. I'll keep you updated on its arrival (or not) to NC; and when it does I'll host a craft night at my house and teach everybody how to make fun homemade postcards properly so that you aren't accused of being a terrorist.

p.s. the title of this post is after the Blues Clues song "Mail time Mail time Maaail timeeeeee. Here's the mail it never fails it makes me want to wag my tail. When it comes I wanna wail MAIIIIILLLLLLL"

Monday, February 15, 2010

This is a Valentine's Celebration


Okay so it was Valentines Day and me and my roommates wanted to be surrounded by our loving friends ... so we hosted a valentines day party! And amazingly page 138 was my chance to create a celebration! Directions were to
1. Come up with a theme
2. Make a festive dish or dessert
3. Wear a special outfit
4. Play music i like
5. Decorate

Mission complete! Technically we were totally planning on having a Valentines party, with or without page 138 ... but sometimes life just works out perfectly that way.

Theme: Love. obviously.
Festive dish: Oh my goodness ... me and my roommates played Betty Crocker hostesses all day and made so much food! Meatballs, pita chips, dips, cupcakes, cookies up the ying yang, chocolate covered pretzels, chocolate covered strawberries ... chocolate chocolate chocolate. A Valentine's feast indeed.
Special Outfit: I wore pink tights. That's pretty special.
Music: Love songs
Decorations: So tacky, but oh so beautiful for valentines day =)

In addition, page 89 was a guest registry. So I left out my (not a) book for everybody to sign it and leave comments while at the party. When I look at it,it just makes me smile :) My friends are not only interested in what I do and very caring, but they're also cute as heck and hilarious. I got some very loving messages, and some very graphic ones as well (I would expect nothing less out of my friends). And all the comments were most appreciated! (Even the naked drawing).



I felt a little bad that we only invited a select few people, but it was a Sunday night and all. And even though I wish we could always invite everybody we know ... the truth is that Valentines Day is supposed to be a special day, dedicated to showing people you truly care about them. So this was our special way to let our closest friends know we care. I hope you had fun, and if you missed out, then you will be invited to the next party!

Honestly, I had such a blast getting ready for it and preparing for it. It totally gave me something to do; a point to my day. Instead of sitting around saying "It's Valentines Day and I don't have a special somebody" ... I spent all day with 25 special somebodies. What could be better than that?! And I had so much fun making the day as special as I could for them, that just their presence was enough for me. I think this was my most favorite Valentines Day ever. Seriously. There was love all around.

Pictures posted for proof. If you ever need a personal party planner, you know who to call ;)


Thursday, February 11, 2010

This is a day in the life of Lindsey




Upon waking up to a really busy or stressful day, have you ever caught yourself thinking "Just get through the day." As if, once the day is over and the sun sets, your life will be better. But isn't it sad to think that your life would be better once the day is over? Because isn't that what life is....? Living the days we are given? And if you are just going through the motions, waiting for it to pass, then you're missing out on living.

No pointing fingers here, I do it too! Actually over the last few months I've been a bad girl. I've been saying things like "Just get through the week" or even "Just get through the next 6 months!"
That's how bad I was planning on life being. So bad that I'd rather just skip over the next few months and suddenly wake up to it being June ... and life would be better then.

Well, I'm glad that I didn't do this. I'm glad that I didn't use my magical time traveling powers (which I obviously have) to plummet myself into the summer. Because as it turns out, the days aren't being as bad as I had thought. In fact, lately I've been having some great days. Days that as I'm going to bed at night I think in my head "I had a good day."

These days don't have to be anything extraordinary, they don't necessarily have to be fun. They could revolve around one thing or many things ... its just a day where everything was okay. And in my world, if everything is okay, then life is good. (like the t-shirts!)

Page 124 was A MOMENT IN TIME, a day that would never happen again.
I recorded it for my own memory of what a good day is. And of course, so that you all could experience a day in the life on Lindsey:

Wednesday February 10, 2010
I woke up at 7:45 with a text from my friend saying "SNOW DAY". But then I looked out my window, and there was NO snow! I obviously didn't believe her so I went online to verify.But she told the truth...UMass was closed due to snowy weather predictions! I slept an extra 45 minutes then woke up an enjoyed my cup of hazelnut coffee while watching Regis and Kelly. I ate breakfast, did some reading for Kinesiology. Talked to my mom on the phone. Then I drove to practice where I got to pole vault for the next two hours! I only got to go from 4 steps, (which is not a full run) but it was still productive and fun because since it was a snow day the whole team was there together! I remembered to have a good block leg so I got upside down a lot better than I normally do. I was sore all day, so I sucked it up after practice and went down to the trainers and took an ice bath (which was absurdly cold at about 39 degrees). I put some hot water in it, because 39 is just far far far too cold for me! But after a few minutes my legs were numb anyway so I guess it didn't matter. I came home and prepared an apple-rice salad and took a shower. I went out and did laundry and a bit of grocery shopping ... at this point it JUST started snowing, so don't worry, it was still safe to drive. At night I went to Yoga. It was a really relaxing class. Came home (still hardly snowing!) ate my apple-rice salad and tea and watched Ella Enchanted with Erinn. At 10:00 I wrote this documentation of my day, then finished one quick homework assignment due for class tomorrow. I went on facebook for a solid half hour and chatted with some friends. Then I read a few chapters of my Jodi Picoult book and went to bed at 12... But I didn't fall asleep until I took a sleeping pill some time after 1:30...but I can't say that ruined my day because at that point it was the next day!!


Im glad I documented this day because it was good, and now I can remember it. It doesn't take much for it to be a good day... A few friends, some physical activity, a little bit of productivity, a phone call from home, food and sleep. Thats all I really need I guess.

Hope you all enjoyed my snow day ;)

Monday, February 8, 2010

This is what I own

Page 136 is an inventory of the items I own.

Computer 1
Printer 1
Lamps 3
Cell phone 1
Phone charger 1
Hair straightener 1
Hairdryer 1

Desks 2
End tables 3
Chairs 2
Dresser 1
Chest 1
Trash can 1

Candles 9
Picture frames 10
Books 9
Textbooks 11
Journals 6
Notebooks 5
Folders 4
Clipboards 2
Sharpie’s 20


Bath towels 3
Bath robe 1
Shoes 21
Jeans 9
Corduroys 2
Sweatshirts 10
Athletic pants 11
Jackets 4
Shirts ughhh do I have to count? A lot
Shorts ….I don’t want to count these either. A lot

Bags 8
Bandannas 6
Hats 4
Gloves 5
Scarves 4

Wallets 2
Sunglasses 2
Headbands 3
Hair clips 6
perfume 2
jewelry box 1
jewelry ... as many that fit into my jewelry box

Keys 4
Track numbers 19
Pillows 2
Stuffed animals 2
_____________________
total things: over 226


Clearly I own a lot more things, but inventory is brutal! I really just don't want to do it anymore.
But in the end all we really need to know here is:

Total things I own that are not books, do not say the word "book" in it or on it, and do not claim to be a book:
195
Books, textbooks, notebooks, anything that appears to have some sort of binding and writing and book-like features:
31
Things that look and appear just like a book, just like the other 31, but for some reason self-proclaims itself to NOT be a book:
1

...I just may never understand. Maybe nobody ever will.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

This is a view I couldn't have seen without you.

I used to get frustrated with people who just sat back and watched life go on around them. I'd think to myself "Why don't they get off their butts and actually live life instead of just watching it go by them!" And I was always the person who took up the any opportunity to get up and do something just to make sure I wasn't that person sitting back and watching.
...But oddly, lately ... I like to watch.
Its peaceful.

As I am learning recently, there are many different ways to look at life.
I don't know which way is right.
And although the past few days I've probably been sitting on my butt too much, and probably should start to "live" again, I don't think its necessarily wrong anymore.
I understand why people sit and watch now. They get to watch life without having an effect on it. Without it affecting them. It's kind of relaxing to just drift off for a bit and let life continue on while you take a break.



So right now I have the opportunity to sit and look (out of a fake window which I cut out of page 122). And look at ANY view that I want.

I decided, I just want to look at the sun.
It makes me feel warm and fuzzy inside.
And page 122 is quite convenient because its 9:28 Tuesday night in January ... and of course, the sun isn't out. So if I looked out of a REAL window, I wouldn't be able to see the sun. But thanks to NOT a Book, I can do anything I want.

I'm looking at the sun through my window.
:)

Thursday, January 28, 2010

This is a black hole

Page 129: A Portable hole/portal
Literally is a giant black hole.
Directions:
1. Cut out
2. Affix the hole to any surface
3. Use

So simple. Yet, quite a responsibility. And quite a challenge.
You see, this portable hole portal can make anything disappear at will, and can take me to any location that I want to be right now. What do I want to disappear? Where do I want to go?

It's rather daring to use this portable hole portal. It looks like a black hole. And as we all know, once one enters a black hole, you never return.
So I'm a bit nervous that if I decide to put something in my portable hole/portal/black hole then it might never return. And that's a scary thought.

And if I could be anywhere right now, where would I want to be?
At the moment ... I'm not 100% sure where I want to go. But it is kind of nice to look out at my portal on the wall and think: if I wanted to go somewhere I could.
I kind of want to go home.
I kind of want to go on vacation. The beach.
I kinda of want to be in some body's arms.
Andddd I kind of just want to go in my bed and go to sleep!

You know what else is cool? ... The great thing about life is you can always go somewhere. Instant portable hole/portal or not; you are never truly stuck in one place. Even if you feel like it. Yes, I have to go to class tomorrow. But literally it's not impossible for me to drive home tonight if I truly desired to. And I can book a flight online RIGHT now for a vacation and leave as soon as tomorrow if I wanted to. I can call up any one of my friends and ask for a hug and cuddle. And they would! And by bed is literally right behind me. I can hop on in whenever I want.

My black hole on the wall is a reminder:
1. Don't throw things out because they may never return.
2. You are never stuck in one place, you can always go somewhere else.

...unless that place is a black hole. Then you are stuck there. So I guess moral of the story: Don't wish to be transported to a black hole (via instant portable hole/portal) because then you will never return.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

This is excuses excuses excuses ....

The other day I did page 112 which was "An EXCUSE to avoid other things."
That's funny ... I'm pretty sure this entire book is my excuse to avoid other things. I'm pretty sure I bought you and started this blog for the sole purpose of avoiding other things in life and an excuse to distract myself from things I did not want to do. (Although at this point, I basically continue because I'm a blogging junkie and actually think its fun). (And sometimes because I'm bored). (Sometimes because I want to do something out of the ordinary). (But still ... sometimes it is my excuse to avoid doing other things)

Well ANYWAY, at the time that I did page 112 (last Saturday) I wanted to avoid the following things:
- Negative confrontation with people I care about.
- Buying my school books.
- Moving to a seat closer to an outlet to plug in my computer so it doesn't die.
- Tonight - and the nighttime socializing festivities that college life entails.
- Finishing my lab.
- The first week of classes.
- The winter.


At the time, page 112 was a great excuse to avoid these things. And at the time, I technically didn't have to do ANY of those things on that list. I was able to successfully avoid all of them! Thanks to NOT a book and a steaming cup of Starbucks.

But looking at the page today I just realized it was a complete failure.
I was not able to avoid any of these things. Not one.

- Within 24 hours, I had the negative confrontation. If it needs to happen, it needs to happen.
- Within 3 days I had to buy my school books.I had to do a homework assignment based on Chapter 1 of the textbook by Thursday, therefore I needed to buy the book.
- I ended up going out to the nighttime college festivities....peer pressure worked its magic on me.
- Within 4 days I had to go into lab, and work has started up on it again. I'm going in again today and lots of next week. I have a responsibility and a job to do. It can't go unfinished.
- The first week of classes has come and gone. I can't stop time. I can't stop school from happening.
- The winter..... well, unless I go in a coma for the next 3 and 1/2 months, I just don't see how its possible to avoid that either.


- Howeverrrrr .... I DID NOT MOVE TO A SEAT CLOSER TO AN OUTLET FOR MY COMPUTER! Alas-success! I avoided something!
But not quite....
My computer died shortly after. Which totally backfired. It wasn't the success of avoidance that I was looking for.

So what have I learned from all of this??
You can't avoid life.
I can make excuses all I want. I can write them down, I can say I don't want to do it. But if it has to be done, it will be done. Whether I want to do it or not.
So if its going to get done at some point or other, then the only difference is how its done: Early, in a timely manner, without complaining, without stressing; Or at the last minute, stressed about it, with complaining, and having negative thoughts and opinions about it.

I'm not saying that because of this I will now do everything without complaint in a timely manner from here on out for the rest of my life. Actually, ya, I can tell you that will 100% not be the case :)
I'm just saying I learned my lesson (Whether I apply it or not).

Sorry This is NOT a Book ... you are not a valid excuse to avoid life. Thanks for trying though. I appreciate the effort!

P.S. I hope everybody has a wonderful day :)

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

This is not a new page



I haven't done another page in NOT a book yet. But I have just a few quotes that I've recently come across and I want to share. (I'm still going off the kick that quotes instantly make you feel better ....)

The heart has reasons which reason cannot know.
- By Blaise Pascal (told to me by Anna today).


Have courage for the great sorrows of life and patience for the small ones; and when you have laboriously accomplished your daily task, go to sleep in peace.
- By Victor Hugo (writen on my daily quote calandar for Tuesday January 19, 2010).


We knowers are unknown to ourselves, and for a good reason: How can we ever find what we have never looked for?
- Nietsche,


And finally the entire lyrics to Bill Withers "Lean on Me" song, courtesy of my good friend Tim. Seriously, this has got to be one of the best songs ever... in every way. Everybody needs somebody. I'm so thankful for everybody that is a friend to me. And I hope everyone knows you can always come to me.

Sometimes in our lives we all have pain
We all have sorrow
But if we are wise
We know that there's always tomorrow

Lean on me, when you're not strong
And I'll be your friend
I'll help you carry on
For it won't be long
'Til I'm gonna need
Somebody to lean on

Please swallow your pride
If I have things you need to borrow
For no one can fill those of your needs
That you don't let show

If there is a load you have to bear
That you can't carry
I'm right up the road
I'll share your load
If you just call me

So just call on me brother, when you need a hand
We all need somebody to lean on
I just might have a problem that you'd understand
We all need somebody to lean on

Lean on me when you're not strong
And I'll be your friend
I'll help you carry on
For it won't be long
Till I'm gonna need
Somebody to lean on

Saturday, January 16, 2010

This is the purpose of life??

"In every one of us there are two ruling and directing principles, whose guidance we follow where ever they may lead; the one being an acquired innate desire of pleasure; the other, an acquired judgement which aspires after excellence."
-- Socrates


I think this means that there are two reasons that we, as human beings, do things. One being, for joy, pleasure, happiness. To do something just because you want to and it keeps you living.
The second reason being, so that you can excel, achieve, gain, and/or become something greater. Something that you couldn't have become or achieved without having done all the things before hand. Something you can't just naturally be.

So basically Socrates just told me: I can do something just to do something and be happy (scratch that ....) and be content.
OR I can do something so that it ultimately leads me to be able to do something else.

Sometimes when you break things down and simplify, life just seems so silly. But even though I expected something more mindblowing from such a distinguished astute philosopher such as Socrates - I gotta give him credit. It makes sense. I totally agree.

Have you ever sat down and wondered "What is the purpose of life?"
I hope you haven't. Because I have ... and its not a pretty thing to think about. It can really screw with your head. But it's really not as complicated as I used to think. I guess, after breaking it down with Socrates, I kind of realize that the purpose of life is to do things. No matter what is is, or what it is for. People just do things. And as you continue to do things, life goes on.

Thus my second quote of the day:
"In three words, I can sum up everything I've learned about in life. It goes on."
-- Robert Frost.


On page 60 (yeah I should have done this a while ago but just forgot!) I was supposed to sit in a public place and pretend to be an alien and take notes on human behavior and customs.

So here I am, at Starbucks, on a Saturday afternoon, people watching.

From my notes I can sum up human behavior and customs as follows:
Some people are loud. Always talking. Laughing.
Some are quiet. Just looking. I can't conclude what it is they are looking at. They just look.
Almost everybody is with somebody. Or multiple people.
And when someone is alone, they have something else to accompany them. A book, a newspaper. Even though they don't have another person to talk to, its like they can still talk and communicate through the text of something else.
Its okay to touch each other. Hold hands.
People pay money in order to get something else. Food and drink.
Everybody has their own stuff. A bag, a purse, a backpack. They keep it close to them.
People are walking. I can't conclude where they are walking to, or why.
Some people come and go quickly, some have not left yet. I can't conclude where they are going when they leave. And I can't conclude why somebody hasn't left, because there isn't much to do here necessarily either. They are just sitting here and talking. Why here?
Other people are actively doing stuff. In the same uniform. They do what they are asked to do by the people who seem to be doing nothing.

Back to Socrates...
People come into Starbucks and sit and read, sit and talk, sit and tell a story and laugh with friends. And they accomplish very little besides living. Doing something. And enjoying themselves, because of their "innate desire of pleasure," according to Socrates.
Other people are working. They have a task at hand - to make a grande nonfat mocha cappuccino - not because it makes they happy. But rather because by doing this, they are working hard and making money which will allow them to do something else and achieve something greater. Such as a promotion, or a big check that can buy them something new and great. They are doing something becuase they aspire something greater, according to Socrates.

The purpose or meaning of life is a funny thing to think about.
There are moments in our life when we do things for a purpose. And there are moments when we do things just because.
Either way, as life contiues around me in Starbucks...people just do things. And I will probably never know the real reason why. But thats life. You do things for any reason. And it goes on.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

These are a few of my favorite things (like the sound of music)


"The MAGIC in all that is, and the wonder in al that could be, is partly made of stardust and parly made of the SEA" "There's no place like home" "Our dreams become reality when we believe in our tomorrows" "To live would be an awfully great adventure"

Page 77: An Escape Capsule.
Approximately the size of a small closet. I listed all the items that I would put in this closet sized escape capsule to accompany me when I need to (duh) escape. So basically, I put my favorite things in there. Because I figure if you need to escape, it is probably because you are trying to get away from something or someone. And thats not really an ideal situation to be in. So it would be nice to be reminded of the things that you like and the people and places that you do enjoy being with. So here is the list of things that I put my escape capsule that I can now escape to:

- Lucky (my cat) or Merlee (my roommates cat, if she lets me)
- A picture of the ocean (Preferably Cape Cod)
- Flowers. Real ones. Maybe potted ones so that they will stay alive in the capsule.
- A picture of my family
- Chocolate ice cream
- Coffee (in case I'm hungry)
- This is NOT a Book
- My journal and pen
- Simba (I sleep with him every night. He is the best. I love him).
- Water (to feed my flowers and my thirst!)

Then I decorated the entire page. I love doing this kind of stuff. Collage-ing and being crafty. I decorated it with good quotes, pictures of flowers, the ocean, my family, and simba and kitty stickers.

So OK, in reality, I can't just climb into my "closet capsule" every time I want to get away and steal my roommies kitty and eat a gallon of chocolate icecream. It would be weird. Not normal and unhealthy. BUT I can atleast open up to Page 76 everytime I want to escape, and hopefully remembering all the things that I love will take me away for a moment or two.

And miraculously, for the first time in two weeks, I only had ONE practice today! I had all morning free with not much to do...so I continued being crafty and made a similar collage of my favorite things on the computer! So now its up here and I can share the prettiness with you.

And while Im at it: Here's another iconic-type collage I made on the computer last year with lots of my favorite pictures of the beach, track, gymnastics, favorite movies, sayings .. and just down right prettiness and smileyness to look at. Basically, I get warm fuzzy feelings when I make and look at collages of my favorite things. I hope you feel warm and fuzzy too =)



(I think if you click on the pics they get larger...)

Monday, January 11, 2010

This is opening up (hence the lengthiness of this post)

As I've said before, I like blogging specifically about This is NOT a Book because it is something that has meaning is my life that I can share, but its not too personal. It has a focus. It's not like my journal where I rant and rave about everything and anything. And get way too emotional and personal that not even my mother would care to read about it!

But I'm going to try to open up a bit right now. Because I need to. So if you don't care about my personal life, and only care about funny stories I have about completing the missions of This is NOT a Book, then feel free to stop reading. No offense taken.

Page 103: This is a psychological mood-altering machine.
It told me to write my current mood, then write my mood of choice in the "machine" on the page, then focus really really hard ... and then voila! Your mood will be changed.
WOW, I cannot explain to you how much I have been in desperate need of this recently.
If only it were this easy.

So... my whole life I've been a happy girl. I have a funny family. We laugh. One of my past coaches called me "Smiley." And my nickname in high school was "Sunshine" because I was always bright and sunny.
But for the first time in my life, all semester, I've been feeling not so bright and shiny. More kind of ... dull. Not dark and dreary. Just cloudy. Now I've had dark days before, I've had some pain and suffering for a 20 year old, I've been through a few deaths and physical and emotional obstacles. But whats odd recently is that nothing is wrong, nothing is bad, nobody died ... but the clouds are here. And whats even more odd, is that is been months, and they haven't left.

So throughout all this time I've been all hung up on trying to be "happy" again. Everyday I wake up and say "Today I will be Happy." And I am constantly reminding myself to "do what makes you happy." But, nothing is working. Maybe it does temporarily ... but after a short amount of time I realize that the clouds are still here and I'm not truly Happy, that I just fooled myself for a short amount of time.

Be Happy.
Be Happy.
Be Happy.

I've been trying SO hard to do things that will make me happy. Talk to friends. Smile. Run. Be with boys. Be with one boy. Don't talk to friends. Don't smile. Don't Run. Don't be with boys. Don't be with one boy.
..... nothing works.
..... I'm still not happy.

Finally about a month ago, me and my mom had a talk. At first she thought I was going crazy because I was feeling so down all the time. And then she thought I was crazy for wanting to be UP all the time.

Be Happy.
What does that even mean???
What is happy??
Who is happy ALL the time?
Is it even possible?
And if it were ... would I even want that? I mean ... imagine being around somebody who is happy ALL the time.
I would probably want to punch them at some point.


Why am I so hung up on being "Happy"? Why am I always thinking that being "Happy" is some sort of safe haven. I have this twisted image of what being Happy is supposed to be like. Like, its a place above me and I have to work my way there, as if its something I can achieve. And once I'm there I won't have to look up in despair anymore. And I'm a failure for not reaching it. And it's the fact that I'm so hung up on trying to be "Happy" that I realize that I'm NOT happy, and then feel more down and depressed that I'm not happy... Because I feel like a failure and I'm looking up at all the people around me who ARE happy and Im jealous and lonely.
What a VICIOUS cycle. A twisted image of happiness.


So after the talk I had with my mom I realized, I don't need to be happy. Don't listen to those cute little smiley face shirts that say "Be Happy" on them. I don't want to be happy anymore.
Now, I think its stupid.

I want to be content. I want to be okay. I want to live each day.

So my current mood:
Anxious. Uncertain. Nervous. Undecided. And a bit sad.
Im anxious about everything in my life. From what will I be doing in 5 years, to what will I do in 5 minutes. I am anxious about having to wake up tomorrow morning. I am anxious to start my DI applications that don't need to be done for 8 months. I'm anxious to do something, because after I finish blogging I don't know what to do.
I am uncertain about every decision I've made in the past few months. I'm not sure if I should have eaten that cookie at dinner tonight. I'm not sure if I should have been focusing more on running all fall and not pole vault. I'm not sure if I should be taking Kinesiology 585 next semester. Im not sure if I should have broken up with my boyfriend. I am nervous. I am nervous about my first meet on Thursday. Will I do good? Will I fail? Will I let it affect me? I am undecided about the decisions I'm currently making. Should I hang out with a particular person tonight or not. Should I be alone or with friends. Should I push myself the extra bit in practice, or go get ice because I'm hurting. I can't decide. And I'm a bit sad because I'm feeling all of these things. All of these negative things. All of these things that don't make me feel secure or confident. They make me feel a bit sad, because I don't want to feel them! But I can't help it. I can't help myself. And that makes me sad. I always thought I could figure out my feelings, and suddenly I can't. I don't like it.

Well my mood of choice which I placed in the machine is: Content.
I can't make these feelings magically disappear. (OR I should say that I can't put them in a machine and just alter them into more positive feelings). Sorry This is NOT a Book, but it doesn't work like that.
But what I can do is accept them.

I can accept that I feel nervous and anxious and upset and undecided. And maybe I can work on it. Maybe I can try to relax, or talk to people about it, and put everything in perspective. Maybe if I don't focus in on them. Maybe if I don't waste all my energy thinking about the fact that I have these feelings and trying all of the sudden be rid of them and be happy. Maybe if I just acknowledge that I have them and then move on and don't focus on them...then I'll be okay.

Everybody must feel these things. Its just what you do with these feelings that determine your mood. So I would like to be content. Accepting of the days when I'm anxious and sad. And accepting of the temporary times or moments when I'm happy. Accepting the fact that its impossible to smile every second of every day. And being content with myself even when I'm not smiling. Because I know that just because I'm not smiling doesn't make me a bad person. I want to eventually find a comfortable middle ground - between the unreachable fantasy HAPPY land and depression - where I can just say "This is my life. And I'm okay."



This just reminded me of a poem that one of my great aunts gave to me on my high school graduation day. Apparently it was my great grandmothers favorite. It might now be one of mine too:

May you always have love in your heart
May you always have joys to share
And wherever your dreams take you
May contentment meet you there.

Monday, January 4, 2010

This is THE CAPTAIN WOMAN

With the help of friends, a list of my personality traits was formed.
kind
caring
committed
empathetic
competitive
driven
realistic
goal oriented
open minded
intelligent
organized
crafty
sympathetic

Then through exaggeration and imagination ... a superhero was born! Not only did we write the introductory storyline of how THE CAPTAIN WOMAN came to be, but I put on the mask and cape, and we spontaneously acted it out as well.

So alongside THE CAPTAIN WOMAN (played by me), who helps people achieve their goals, is THE GINES (played by Gina) and SNUGGIETILDA (played by Elaina). Enjoy. We certainly did.

video

"Her competitive nature quickly took up the challenge to be the first superhero to reach ALL of her realistic lifetime achievement goals ... in ONE night. Committed to complete this task, she is open-minded to the challenges she may face. Therefore she organized a strong group of fellow intelligent superheroes to compete against her so that she is even more driven to reach her goal first. Although she kindly looked out for her fierce superhero competitors and friends, there was nothing stopping her from reaching success. And thus, 24 hours later she craftfully, intelligently, and competitively succeeded in achieving all of her 524,068 goals (which were originally thought to be completed within 100 years) However, she did not bask in her glory. For shorly after her victorious achievement she felt sympathetic and empathetic for her fellow competitors which so so gracefully crushed. With her innate caring nature, she then spent the rest of her life and superhero powers to help other achieve their goals.

Look for more funny superhero pics on my photostream via flickr!

Sunday, January 3, 2010

This is finding security in an unsettled life.

On page 101 and 102 I was supposed to create a map based on some aspect of my every day life.
But I felt stumped.
Nothing is really the same every day. I mean...I suppose I wake up and walk to the bathroom every morning and then walk to the coffee maker. But that would be a really boring map. And plus, this morning I was home. Home home. So then I had to ask myself, "Do I make a map of my trip out of bed to the bathroom and to the coffee maker based on Home Home, or based on my house at school?" Because at this stage in my life, I'm at school more often. Yet, I've still spent most of my life at Home Home. I got too confused and I nixed that idea.

I then supposed that since I am normally at school a lot, I could make a map of how I go to classes. Because I go to classes Monday through Friday and school is basically my everyday life. But I don't have the same classes every day, my schedule changes. And every day is different, it might not be a direct route to class all the time. I could stop and eat or meet up with a friend. And most times I walk ...but sometimes its too cold out (since it is winter in New England) and I take the bus. Walking and the bus are two totally different routes.
Needless to say, I couldn't settle on a map based on my route to campus every day either.

I almost got discouraged. At the moment I'm distraught over going back and forth from home to school. It's tough. Emotioanlly exhausting. And this is just one more thing to be upset about. Why can't I make a map of my everyday life??! Why isn't my life stable? Why haven't I got a routine? Why do I feel like I'm never settled and I can't relax and just be at peace with my everyday mapped out, routine, settled, stable life?

Wait ... why would I want that right now anyway?

Would I seriously rather just enter the work force, get a full time job work my 40 hours a week M-F, find a place to live, make the same commute every day and feel settled?
HECK NO!

Granted, there are pro's and con's to each side. But for now...I'm independent and young. Being in college means that my life is constantly getting a switch up. Term to term, year to year. I get rapid changes and rapid results. If I don't like a class, its OK! It'll be over in 4 months! If I don't like a roommate, its OK! I can switch! Nothing is permanent. In 14 days I went from school to home to boston to new york to home to school. Its fun to travel, explore, have the ability to leave! But sometimes this can also bother me. Sometimes I just want to stay in one place so that I have the time to establish myself or accomplish something or feel settled about my life. But even though I get very anxious about where my life is going ... the truth is, I wouldn't have it any other way. Because rather than feeling constrained to where my life is at, I'd rather feel overwhelmed with options as to where my life could go.

So no, I don't wake up in the same place everyday. (That does not mean what you think it does). And no I don't have the same goals and tasks ahead of me everyday. So no, I could not think of a map to create for my everyday life.

But I compromised.
Right now, my everyday life is a life that is not fully settled. One that changes frequently. But no matter where I go, what I do, who I'm with, I will always have home. And I love running and have for years. And know that I will always run in the future. So despite my rapidly changing life, I can always count on two things to always be there for me: home and running.


This is a map of a quick simple Out-and-Back route that I always do when I'm at home. Its EXACTLY 2 miles so its great for me to do on an easy day; or its great to do as a warm up for a sprint workout; or its great to do as a cool down after a plyos and lifting day; or its great to do with pick-ups in between. Basically, its my fallback every time I go home. It never lets me down.

No my life is not settled. I cant be sure that I will do the same thing every day. But it feels good to know that there are some things in life you can count on. No matter what I do with these two miles, it will always be exactly two miles. And it will always be waiting for me at home.