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:
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

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!