5 more things

October 19, 2011 § Leave a comment

That you might not know I’m really fascinated by. 

  1. North Korea. I am borderline obsessed with North Korea. It fascinates me! That a pure dictatorship can exist like that. That they can keep their population totally brainwashed and under control. Or, you know, maybe not, because we don’t know that anything that comes from there is true. Here’s a great documentary that Vice did on North Korea.
  2. The Amish. Ok, I won’t immediately draw a parallel from North Korea to the Amish, but I just think societies that live within their own microcosm of, you know the entire rest of the world is really cool to me. Also related: Mormons, crazy villages in the middle of the Amazon that have never been contacted by the outside world.
  3. Crystal Meth. So I watched Breaking Bad, and then I was like, holy shit, could I make crystal meth? (Answer: No.) but the chemistry was really intriguing. Plus, then I found this article, about the crystal meth epidemic in North Korea. My brain almost exploded.
  4. Tea Party Republicans. Oh so there is a theme here.
  5. Britney Spears. For anyone that cares to listen, I have a lot of opinions regarding Miss Spears. In another life I would totally do an honors thesis on the rise and fall of Britney, and I totally think that her first marriage in Vegas was a cry for help in leaving the entertainment business, and that she subsequently had kids for that same reason. And now people have forced her back in to make more money, and she clearly doesn’t want it. Uhhh….so, no…I don’t spend a lot of time thinking about Britney Spears, in case you were wondering.

5 things

October 3, 2011 § Leave a comment

5 things you might not know about me

  1. I really like serial crime fiction novels starring a male, loner, military veteran. Seriously. I read three religiously: Harry Bosch, Jack Reacher, and Walt Longmire. These are the only hardcover fiction books I will generally buy. Because I really like them.
  2. I love cottage cheese. I can eat it straight from the container, I can eat it with anything, Alex makes cottage cheese pancakes, and I’ve been known to add it to scrambled eggs and regular pancake batter. I. Love. Cottage. Cheese.
  3. My favorite online work distractions are…fashion blogs. Which you would probably not be able to tell by the way I dress.
  4. I like dramatic television shows more than I like comedic ones. I just never got into The Office. And I know that 30 Rock is funny, but I just…I never got in the habit of watching them on TV. (Netflix, on the other hand, is a whole ‘nother story.) My Thursday night TV line up will always be Grey’s Anatomy over Parks and Rec. I know. I’m weird.
  5. I don’t like writing on the computer.  No, I know what you’re thinking, this is writing on a computer, but my first urge is always to write drafts of things on paper. I understand that computer is the way to go now, blogging, ease of editing, track changes, etc, but there is still nothing like putting pen to paper, and writing.


September 30, 2011 § Leave a comment

In high school I did an Outward Bound program where we got to go hiking in the NC mountains for 10 days, and then we came back and did a service project. We went to an elementary school in our district and did a three week session on stereotypes, complete with team building activities. It’s interesting to hear how kids encounter prejudices and how they process them. In short, kids are way more observant than you would think. There was this one little girl, cute-as-a-button blonde haired blue eyed kid, who raises her hand when we were sharing times where we thought we were unjustly stereotyped, and says, “My daddy drives a Hummer, and whenever we go to Weaver Street Market, people stare at us and give us looks.”

To which I turned to my partner, who was leading the discussion with me, and we both thought, “Guilty.” Because I stare at people that drive Hummers because what could you POSSIBLY need a Hummer for, you live in CHAPEL HILL, and they get like 7 miles to the gallon.

So I try to reign in my snarky side, the sarcasm, the snap judgements that are unjustly deserved (except sometimes are), because some people surprise you.

There are some that I just can’t help but judge you on.

  • People that drive Hummers. I still cannot get over this.
  • People that go to Duke/root for Duke.
  • People that are vocally snobby about food and alcohol. I feel like if you have to talk about being a foodie, you’re not a foodie. Also, I like microbrews with the best of them, but sometimes a PBR just hits the spot.
  • I actually had this great encounter at my board meeting the other day. I was talking to one of the moms, and the conversation went something like this.

    Me: So do you work for UNC?
    Other Mom: No actually I work at Duke.
    Me: Oh.
    Other Mom: I actually went there for undergraduate.
    Me: Oh. Visibly judging
    Other Mom: Most people are surprised to hear that when I tell them.
    Me: Somewhat relieved I was thinking just that!
    Other Mom: Usually it means, “Oh I’m that’s funny, you don’t seem like a complete asshole.”
    Me: I think we’re going to be friends.


    September 21, 2011 § Leave a comment

    With new serieses starting on the television, I thought I would compile a funny list.

    Oh the alternate title for this post will be In Which I Embarrass My Boyfriend.

    Here is a list of shows that Alex refuses to watch with me:
    Dancing with the Stars
    American Idol
    Anything on MTV (Jersey Shore, Teen Mom, etc.)
    Say Yes to the Dress

    Here is a list of shows that Alex and I can reliably watch together:
    Pawn Stars
    Swamp People
    Mad Men
    Breaking Bad
    Project Runway

    And, a list of shows that I will tolerate but would never watch if he wasn’t there:
    English Premiere League Soccer
    Any NFL game (excluding Superbowl)
    Any MLB game (excluding the world series…maybe)

    And finally, a list of shows that I have inexplicably found on Alex’s Netflix queue
    Grey’s Anatomy

    R is for rawr

    September 17, 2011 § Leave a comment

    I saw this on the lovely Abby’s blog. (We were at UNC at the same time, but I’ve only found her blog through a mutual friend Angela.) And it’s a rainy saturday and I thought it would be fun to do. So here it goes. My alphabet.

    Ambition: To be happy, to be a role model for my daughter.

    Bad habit: I’m not the most patient of people. And I spend too much time on the internet.

    City: Chapel Hill. I grew up here, I live here, and spent a long time feeling “stuck” here, and have now grown an intense pride and love for my hometown.

    Drink: Coffee.

    Education: B.A. in Biology and a minor in Chinese and creative writing from UNC-Chapel Hill. Currently deciding between a Master’s in Genetic Counseling, or PhD in Biology. (Molecular Genetics?)

    Food: “A meal without cheese is like a beautiful woman who lacks an eye.” Jean Anthelme Brillat-Savarin Cheese. And snack foods.

    Guilty pleasures: Netflix. And Ryan Gosling. And shoe shopping.

    Hometown: Chapel Hill. Born and bred.

    Ice cream: Chocolate chip cookie dough/Lena’s leftovers.

    Jonesing for: Shoes. Always shoes.

    Kryptonite: Lena.

    Lookalike: I don’t really have one. No one consistently says I look like anyone. I think Alex looks like Ryan Gosling though.

    Movie: I saw Midnight in Paris and walked away wanting to spend a year in Paris. It’s still in the back of my mind.

    Nicknames: RACHAELS–Like Ray Charles. Rach. Mama. Mommy. RGB.

    Obsession: Being ok. And Blogging. I have an obsession with blogs/blogging.

    Perfume: Does the scented soap I use count?

    Quirk: I need to be doing something with my hands when I watch television. So recently I’ve been making these tiny rosettes for bags and things. Does that count as a quirk.

    Regrets: As silly as it sounds, I don’t really have any. The only ones I would have would be things I didn’t too, but there’s still time. I don’t believe in regrets. I think when I did I was being too sad.

    Starbucks: Like I said, coffee.

    Talent: I think I’m actually a really good mom.

    Vacation: Anywhere with Alex and Lena. I want to go to DC with them soon. And, staycations are the new vacations. Naptime at this point is a vacation to me.

    Wine: Light reds. Pinots and Shiraz(es?). And bottles shared with friends.

    X: X to dwelling in the past.

    Years: 23, for another month.

    Zen: When Lena falls asleep. My early morning runs.

    Thanks for indulging me. :)

    Lost and found and found and found

    September 15, 2011 § Leave a comment

    I can’t even begin to tell you the amount of thoughts and feelings and new things that are going through my head. This is of course, not at all true, because I’m about to try to do it right now. But I’m doing it in list form for purely organizational reasons.

    1. I’m on the board. I joined the board of directors for L’s daycare. I can’t say too much about it because we’re having our first meeting tonight (!!) but I’m already excited about it–a glimpse into how daycare works. Did you know that there are different philosophies for early childhood education?? WHO KNEW? (Except for everyone that works in early childhood education.) So there’s a little voice that’s going what the hell did i sign up for? because there are meetings to attend and budgets to approve, but I think that the amount that I’ll learn about the center, about how a board works, about people, about myself, will make it worth it. Also, they’re serving veggie lasagna for tonight’s meeting. So, score.

    2. I went to my first science conference…and also have a science blog. Because I am dorky. I presented a poster and went to talks and will probably write more in depth about it at lab-girl-writes because I don’t want to inundate you here with it.

    3. Transitioning to soccer mom. Some of L’s daycare friends are on the YMCA soccer team, so I inadvertently signed L up and she’s on the waitlist for the team. I secretly home she doesn’t get on, because if she does, I know what I will be doing every. saturday. morning. at 8:50. Until the end of time. (aka october). I’m only half kidding. I secretly am really excited and will soon be bugging all of you to come watch my 3 year old “play” soccer. I’ll be the one with the coffee and the bailey’s. Just sayin’.

    4. Reading. I’ve started reading again. I completely decimated the game of thrones series, but I’m reading good stuff too. I just started Cleopatra: A life, as well as Francine Prose’s Reading like a writer which I cannot WAIT to finish and recommend. She has this amazing booklist at the end and I’m really excited to start on that and revisit a lot of the classics that I was forced to read in high school/college and subsequently do not remember anything about them. (My mother was a fish, something about symbolism of some green lantern thing, and You your best thing, sethe, you are) <–literally a summation of what I read in high school.

    5. Science Ok, I said I would save this for my other blog, but some is here too–I LOVE science. I had an amazing time at this conference, so now/not now/eventually/or whatever I need to decide, grad school?? genetic counselling?? What do I do with my life?

    6. Alex/Lena/Aspen/Relationships. For whatever reason, I’ve hit a stride with relationships. Between the boyfriend/the best friend/having a daughter/being a daughter, I would just like to say I have been rocking out all of these things. Alex and I are doing great. Aspen’s on campus more (getting her Masters in Planning (amazzzinggg)) so we get to see each other more, Lena is just, Lena, and my parents and I have been getting along so well. It’s incredible. I hope I can keep it up, because jeez, this is how it should be.

    7. Speaking of relationships, I feel like I’m only just beginning to get to know my grandmother. I got to spend some time with her while I was in DC, and wow, she is a really amazing woman. I will without a doubt be writing more about that.

    8. With all of this it’s really hard to grasp the fact that I’m only 23. Sometimes I feel self-conscious about it. People that aren’t in my situation tend to look at their own experiences and say to me, ‘but you’ve never lived away from home, you haven’t traveled a lot, you haven’t had a lot of jobs’ and I used to think that that was the only range of experience people were supposed to have. Like in your twenties you’re supposed to move to a big city and be poor or go to China and teach english or be a bike messenger or work on a manuscript, and I thought that was how it was supposed to be. But I’m just kind of realizing, you know what? I think I’m going to be on the board of directors and be a soccer mom in my 20s, and see where the world takes me. For one of the first times in my life (now, right now) I’m learning to not be so apologetic for my actions and decisions. And only you can make yourself feel inferior. And the next time someone “feels sorry” for me, I’m gonna be like, don’t. Please don’t. I get to play Left for Dead before picking up my kid at daycare. I get to stand and watch my kid chase a soccer ball while drinking coffee and baileys at 9 am on a saturday. I have a best friend. I have a family. I said this to Alex last night, and he called me out on it, in such a good way. I am so blessed. There’s not really a better way to put it. Blessed. And I’m only 23. And I’ve got my whole life to live. My whole life! Gosh, can you just imagine it?


    August 31, 2011 § Leave a comment

    Do you guys have any mantras? You know, things you say to yourself and repeat…whenever? They might be embarrassing, they might be mood changing, but everyone has one, right? Here, I’ll start.

    I have a few.

    Sometimes, when I’m feeling kind of intimidated, like I’m not doing enough, and some of my parent’s friends come over bragging about how great there kid is doing in grad school I think, Only you can make yourself feel inferior. Thanks Eleanor Roosevelt from a middle school inspirational poster.

    When I’m running, this is the embarrassing one, I tell myself, Look how good you look!

    And days like today, when something just isn’t quite right and I’m in one of those moods, I borrow a line from the amazing Ms. Zora Neale Hurston, and I say quietly, I love myself when I am laughing, and then again when I am looking mean and impressive

    I love myself when I am laughing
    and then again when I am looking mean and impressive.

    I love myself when I am laughing
    and then again when I am looking mean and impressive.

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