Where I list the 4 best things about living on my own

Hey readers, still adjusting to life on my own. Life has been pretty exciting now that I don’t live with the rents anymore. How you ask? Well let’s talk about it.

1.       1.Speaking of the parentals, I feel a lot more loved now that I don’t live at home. That sounds horrible, don’t’ be mislead. We didn’t have Jerry Springer fights. Nobody ever slapped anybody else, we were doing fine, but now that I don’t live at home anymore I get the distinct impression that my mom misses me a little bit. Mostly because she calls me to have needless conversations. Ring Ring, “Hey Tara, I just wanted to see if you want to have this bag of Hershey’s kisses that I found in the pantry from three years ago.” Ring Ring, “Hey Tara, I just wanted to let you know that your cat was annoying today. She wanted to be petted.” This is cool. I miss not always having someone to talk to when I come home at night. Love you mom!

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Now that I don’t live at home, there is no way to know if we are coordinating our outfits correctly.

2.       2. I get to go out at night to do exciting adult things, and it doesn’t matter what time I come home. A while back the roommate and I went out to a country western club called “Wild West”. The best thing about Wild West is that almost everyone was wearing casual clothing. As in, there were several women wearing flip flops on the dance floor and all the men looked like they just got off from a shift at the ranch.

I I had a good time, I wasn’t the designated driver so I got to drink. I had so many drinks that the bartender shook my hand after I closed my tab. Ok that’s not true, I didn’t have that many drinks, but the bartender did shake my hand afterwards. I danced with a man who looked like he was from Duck Dynasty. I felt like was dressed really classy compared to him until I realized that I was wearing a bra that glowed in the dark under the dance floor lights, which I noticed when the straps worked their way out during “Neon Moon”.

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You can’t see it from this angle but trust me, under that dress my whole chest is just glowing away.

3.      3. It’s nice to live with another girl. I told my friend Julian that I had moved into an apartment with a roommate and he asked me if my apartment was extremely girly, and if we had cork boards with inspirational slogans hanging in the kitchen and glitter all over the carpet from craft projects. The answer is…sort of? I forgot my cork board that I decorated with strips of pink scrapbook paper, and my deco paged mason jars are still stored in the closet, but we do have scented candles in the living room. We also have cupcake themed hotpads and dishtowels.

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Someday I’ll move in with a husband and if he really loves me he will continue to let us dry our hands with desserts.

4.      4.My roommate is still in college. I graduated two years ago, but she is just now finishing up her last semester. The whole thing is making me have fond remembrances of my years matriculating. Also making me feel old. The other day I was driving close to campus and I saw an attractive man walking down the street. Well I thought he was attractive until I noticed his shirt said “Class of 2017”, and then I felt like a cradle robber. My roommate studies a vastly different subject than I did, which is also to say a smarter one. She is an engineering major. Sometimes I hear her discussing incomprehensible subjects with her classmates like, “algorithms”,  “program equations” and, “math”. She’s taking a class where she has to learn how to “prove” math. As in, explain to the world WHY a negative number is a negative number. Meanwhile, the other day I realized that I’m pretty sure I don’t know how to write out long division anymore. So you can guess where the numbers intelligence pendulum swings in this household.

She also has lots of friends. Lots of smart, male, engineering friends. So I’ve been working on scoping out the field, to see if there are any hot ones. The other day she was having a video chat with another student, and I was trying to slyly look at the computer screen, to see what he looked like. As I slowly slid into view, I whispered to Kayla, “Can he see me? I wanna see what he looks like, but not in a creepy way.” Kayla: “Uh, I don’t think so.” Boy: “Yes. I can.”  So I’m still working on my game.

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My mom is always encouraging me to find a nice young doctor to marry, but I think a nice young nerdy engineer would still make her proud.

Where my new apartment has wobbly wooden stairs

Hello Readers!

I’m back! After a much too long three month break, I have returned! You might have assumed that I was doing something important, or going through some great tragedy, or mining the depths of my soul to figure out what I’m doing with my life.

I was doing none of those things. In June I went traveling, in July I moved, and in August I did a whole lotta nothin’.

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Well no, I did watch a great deal of Netflix.

I didn’t even purposefully take a break from the blog, it just happened, and I kinda wished it hadn’t because I’ve missed writing on a regular basis. Don’t get me wrong, lying on the sofa for hours and watching Orange is the new black for hours is great, but blogging gives me a sense of purpose. Even though I have only a few readers, just the act of putting down my thoughts, thinking of clever things to say, and constructing each post gives me a great deal of satisfaction.

With that in mind, let’s talk about what I’ve been doing during the summer.

Moving. This isn’t the first thing I did this summer, but it’s probably the biggest and most important thing that has happened to me, and I have learned so much.

First of all, I don’t know if you guys know this, but up until July I was a 24 year old woman still living at home with my parents. I know right? You all want to stop being friends with such a loser RIGHT NOW.

me-strange

Having been convinced by none of my previous actions that I’m a strange person to be friends with.

The problem was that I went to college from home so afterwards it wasn’t like I had this rush to find a new place once my dorm kicked me out. I used to dream about the glamorous apartment life. If I had my own place I could light fancy candles all over the place, I could stay out until all hours of the night without my mom worrying where I was, and I could eat whatever I wanted with no one there to judge me.

 homer eating

There’s an episode of the Simpsons where Homer is in his own apartment eating a tube of cookie dough on the couch. My reaction to this episode as a child was literally, “Wait, adults can just do that!?!?!?! Sign me up!”

Finally this summer I decided that it was time to realize all of my cookie-dough-on-the-couch dreams and find my own place. I don’t have a glamorous job, but with a roommate in a moderately priced apartment, I think I can scrape by.

First step: Find a roommate. I got so lucky you guys, right at the moment that I decided that I needed to move out my best friend’s little sister was also in need of a roommate.

me and megan3

Like this but with red hair.

Now let’s talk about how my expectations for apartment living have lined up with real life.

1.      Adjusting to a roommate.

My roommate and I are getting along really well so far, but living with another person always takes some adjustment and getting used to, even if neither of you is crazy.

me-strange2

Totally sane.

There has been no cookie dough on the couch so far. The main reason for this is that I feel ashamed of how DRASTICALLY healthier my roommate is than me. There are always healthy things on her side of the fridge; organic carrots, grapes, and almond milk, and I’ve already gotten Long John Silver’s TWICE since I’ve lived here. And even though there has been no cookie dough, I still need my sweet fix , so I keep lots of ice cream in the freezer and just sort of hope that she doesn’t notice it next to her frozen broccoli and banana chips.

Seriously guys, my roommate gets up earlier than I do, exercises every day, and makes sandwiches with carrots. CARROTS.

Let’s clarify, it’s not that she’s a crazy super human, I am just not living up to her standard. She is training for the marathon right now, and I feel that this has helped shame me into going to the gym regularly again. Although as I have pointed out to her, she has a whole cute wardrobe of workout clothing, and when I go to the gym it’s like, “alright where’s that ratty shirt I wore around the house three days ago that I can afford to get sweaty.” I also forgot to wear flip flops in the gym shower today. I’ve never been exactly clear on what happens to you if you do this, but people speak of wearing no shoes in the public shower with such foreboding and terror that I almost considered jumping out with shampoo still in my hair. There was nothing to be done though. If I die of “horrible shower-foot” disease we’ll know that the situation is not something to be taken lightly.

2.      Broken things

Let’s talk about the apartment we found. It’s in the lower-to moderate  price range we had agreed upon. It is shabby but clean, it’s in a pretty decent area of town. It is a little older than some apartment complexes, something that is marked by certain special features.

stairs

I assume that in the 1980’s flammable staircases seemed like a wonderful idea.

The day we moved in the stairs up to our second story apartment were wobbly. Something that I’m sure was not comforting to the two movers who had to carry my sofa. Another problem with this is that I’m one of those people that hates making more than one trip from the car to the house when I get groceries, so it’s only a matter of time before I crash through the wood with my bulging grocery bags and land on another person’s front porch surrounded by Long John Silvers and gallons of ice cream.

Another thing, about 3 weeks after we moved in our front doorknob fell off at night, making it almost impossible for us to open the front door. I consider being able to leave one’s residence a necessary part of life, so we called the emergency maintenance hotline, where ironically, we had to leave a message.

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Also, every time I call the apartment office the recorded voice instructs me to hang up and call 911 if it’s a medical emergency. Because apparently people need to be told that.

About 15 minutes later the maintenance man showed up, looking very pissed off and resentful to be having to fix our door, because apparently residents being able to leave their apartment is not a high priority.

In his defense, he’s probably still mad at me for calling him to fix my oven when we first moved here. I mean, it definitely wasn’t working when he came over, but it also definitely wasn’t plugged in either.

That’s all for today, i’ll be back soon with more, I promise! Binge watching of more netflix series will just have to wait.

-Tara

Where Costco puts me in charge of security, and I fail utterly

Hello readers, how are you doing today?  I’m doing quite well today, having finally returned to the deli after a week long absence.

About a week and a half ago I hurt my back at work and I had to switch departments. I know what you’re thinking, working at Costco Wholesale, I must have hurt my back climbing scaffolding to retrieve a 50 pound bag of rice , or while heaving a gigantic sack of flour over my shoulder. You would assume that an ambulance had to be called, and that all of my coworkers watched in concern as I was wheeled out by handsome paramedics.

firemen

Firemen often come to the scene of an accident, even if it’s not a fire. Just in case you’re wondering.

That is not how it happened at all. What happened is that I got on all fours to reach under a table for some trash, and I felt pain in my hips. That’s it. There was no dramatic cracking noise; I didn’t roll around on the floor in pain. I got back up, rubbed my back, and then went home.

That was when the pain started. That night as I went to bed I felt so bad that I knew there was no way I could heave 50 pound boxes of chicken around the next day. I called in sick, and went in to report my injury. Filling out the incident report really makes you realize how stupid your injury sounds.

“How did the injury occur?”

Was cleaning up trash.

“What specific activity was taking place when this injury occurred?”

Was reaching for something.

There are a lot of very official sounding questions. This is fine if you do something exciting like set yourself on fire, or drop a sofa on your foot, then you have real answers to put on the sheet. Then they need to know really specific details. I don’t know how I hurt my back. I wasn’t doing anything weird, all I know is that it hurt enough for me to go report it.

After I reported my injury Costco sent me to Texas Med Clinic. Nothing exciting happened there except that I sat across from a man who was dressed up as a woman. That is, I’m pretty sure it was a man. I kept glancing over at him to figure it out, until finally he was just staring at me like this.

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And he was thinking, “I am fierce and beautiful, you hater.”  And I was like, “No no! You go girl, I’m not a hater!”

I even smiled at him, uh her, and all I got back was a stone cold stare. I will never be invited to be a guest judge on Ru Paul’s Drag Race. After that I saw the doctor and found out that I would have to work in a less physically demanding department for a week.

Member Service. Physically, it’s the easiest job at Costco. During the day all you have to do is stand at the front door and check member cards as people walk in the door. All you have to do at the back door is check receipts for mistakes. Then at night if you are the designated person, you go sit in your car for 3 hours after the store closes as “Parking lot security”. This is where you drive around the parking lot with a walkie talkie, in case anything suspicious happens. It’s very serious business.

You’ll notice how I put parking lot security in quotations. That’s because I (and every other employee at costo) am clearly not a qualified security guard. I can’t confront anyone who is doing anything suspicious; all I can do is call my boss over the radio. I have no weapons, unless you count the car I’m driving.

the tank

A tank, to be sure.

The job was described to me like this, “OMG Tara, parking lot security is so boring and easy.” “All you do is sit in your car and drive around. I study for my finals.” “I read a book.” “I watch youtube videos.” Being prepped in this way, I wasn’t too nervous. I brought snacks, I brought my ipod to listen to. But I also made up my mind to try to be alert and watchful because I’ve been binge watching true crime TV on Netflix lately.  I knew if I wasn’t careful it could be ME being profiled on one of those murder shows as the innocent victim, portrayed by a (slimmer and more attractive) actress. The opening line would be, “An easy job turns deadly. Parking lot murder, tonight at 11.”

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I hope that this is the photo CNN uses for their profile.

I was so diligent that I even went over how to use the walkie talkie before they sent me outside. My supervisor snorted, but Tara leaves no stone unturned. I went out before the store closed. For almost an hour nothing happened. I watched the parking lot slowly empty, and I started to let my eyes wander. This was my fatal mistake. Right as the last members were leaving the parking lot a lady had her purse stolen. It happened right in front of me, and all I heard was squealing tires, and a baby start screaming. I was like, OMG! There’s been a murder! There was a getaway car that I didn’t even see, someone kidnapped someone, omg omg omg! I failed! I failed!

I drove over of course, where the woman was already being assisted by other members. She had left her purse in her basket while she was putting her kids in the car. Someone grabbed it and sped off. I saw no part of it. After I confirmed with her that her purse had been stolen, I radioed the manager. Had I been a professional security guard, I might have said, “Manager to the door please. There’s been an incident.” Instead I was like, “Um…can a manager come out here please, A LADY JUST GOT HER PURSE STOLEN!”

After that I was on edge the whole rest of the night, even though nothing happened. Nothing happened the other three nights I was lot security either. The managers don’t even seem to take it that seriously. They are supposed to page me every time an employee exits the building after dark but when my radio died early in the evening one night, they seemed very unconcerned with getting me a new one. If I had gotten shot in the parking lot the CNN headline would have been, “Tonight, a Costco security employee is shot in the parking lot after her managers refuse to supply her with proper equipment. Who’s to blame? CNN finds out.”

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Finding out who to blame is CNN’s favorite job.

Knowing that I accomplished absolutely nothing as a security guard, I returned to the front door, where I checked member cards. It was here that the most traumatizing event of the entire week happened to me.

While I was welcoming people to Costco, a bug flew up my nose. I can’t even-it was so upsetting that I don’t know if I can talk about it. When it happened I immediately started snorting and wildly clawing at my face. This one member walked past looking at me like I was a freak.  I think it would have been better if I had swallowed it honestly. I don’t think it flew back out. I think it got stuck up there. So I either swallowed it, or it’s living trapped in my sinuses right now.

Yes, I just said that this event was more traumatizing than an innocent woman having all of her credit cards and personal identification stolen. She is probably still dealing with this problem. But if the bug is dead inside my nose slowly ruining my sinuses, well, then so am I.

I am a horrible person. Also, not very good at security either.  

That’s all for today readers, what jobs have you been horrible at?

-Tara

Where I shop for bathing suits and find zebras

If you live in Texas you know that for all practical purposes, we really only have two seasons: Hot, and less hot.

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Texas, where it will be 75 degrees the entire month of February, only so that we can have two cold fronts in April.

But OFFICIALLY, as far as the calendar is concerned, we have 4 seasons.

I am ready for spring to be over. I’ve never really considered myself has having a favorite season, because there are things that I love about each one. I am always excited at the start of a new season. I love summer because it’s a time for traveling, a time for day trips to the beach and the water park. I love Autumn because it’s where Texas decides to be 85 degrees instead of 105. Halloween is in the Autumn, and Starbucks is selling pumpkin spice lattes. Then winter has Christmas, there are all sorts of parties and family get-togethers, and Starbucks is selling peppermint lattes. And then comes spring. Spring has…allergies.

Once Easter is over and all the bluebonnets have all gone away, I am pretty much ready to be done with spring. Because summer…oh summer. Summer has all of this:

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lounging

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flag cake

17 and baking blog

I love summer. I love all of the things that you get to do in the summer. And much more so than when I was younger, I also love the heat of the summer. Since I’ve lost a lot of weight, my tolerance for even mildly cold weather has gone way down.

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You’ll probably see many posts from me about summer activities, and old stories. But right now, in this lull between April and June, it is time to prepare for summer. Last time we talked about how I was trying to find adorable summer dresses to wear. I told you I would take a photo of that blue dress that I purchased.

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 Here I am wearing it at a Fiesta event, looking deathly pale. It’s not because we just left winter, I’ll be maintaining that shade the whole summer.

Having gotten that out of the way, it is time to go Swim Suit Shopping. I used to dread shopping for swimsuits A LOT, and it’s still not one of my favorite things to do. The reason I don’t dread it quite so much is because of this:

before and after

And then the girl on the left ate the one on the right.

 Since 2008 I’ve lost approximately 120 pounds due to weight loss surgery. So understandably, swimsuit shopping has gotten a lot less depressing, but you would be surprised at how narrow the choices still are.  I’m still a large woman, and not really comfortable with wearing bikinis. I envy girls who can wear bikinis, not even so much because they have great bodies, but because there are THOUSANDS of cute choices. You can get a Wonder Woman themed bathing suit! You can get any color, any pattern, I’m just jealous of how cute everything is!

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I really like the bikini’s of Victoria Secret, but I feel like these photos are not shot with a female audience in mind. Like, I appreciate what you’re going for ladies, but I really just want to look at the swimsuit. You don’t need to jut your hips out quite so aggressively. via

Meanwhile in the plus size departments for the last ten years that I have been shopping there, it has been nothing but a parade of black animal prints, and dark colored floral. Occasionally they will compensate for all the blackness by offering one brightly colored horizontal striped bathing suit. Horizontal stripes are not flattering on large women, but for some reason they are ALWAYS everywhere in plus sized sections. It’s like they WANT us to look fatter.

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Plus size women have two choices for swim suits. African safari,via

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or 1970’s upholstery via

And thus my search begins. I’ll let you know how fruitful it is. I’m always on the look out for flattering plus sized clothing, and if you know of any good options, please let me know. If I don’t get back to you, just be on the look out for dark zebras or your grandmothers couch on the beach. It will probably be me. 

-Tara

Where I try to look like the girls on pinterest

It’s almost summer! In preparation I’ve decided that it’s time to get cute summer outfits. I have two main obstacles in the path of me becoming a summer fashionista however, and they are as follows,

1.      1.I’m uhhhhhh….cheap.

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This dress costs over 500 dollars on pinterest! Is it made of gold?! via

The acceptable cost of a purse to me is $18. The acceptable cost of a dress is $25. I bought a dress for $40 the other day and it kind of freaked me out a little bit. Spending hundreds of dollars on one article of clothing just boggles my mind. I know that there are people who buy purses that cost $100 dollars. That cost $900 dollars. Why!? All you do is put your stuff in it! Unless my “stuff” is diamonds and caviar there is nothing I could be carrying around that could equal the cost of the purse.

chanel wallet

I was going to make a “except for my $___ chanel wallet!” joke here, but chanel is literally so fancy and expensive that they don’t have prices on their website. I can’t even… via

So yes, I want to be cute, and have accessories, and look like one of those girls frolicking on pinterest, but there’s a limit to the amount of money I want to spend. 

2.      2. I’m ridiculous. I love my tacky wonder woman Chuck Taylors. I love my earrings that have a woven image of Frida Kahlo. I found these earrings the other day and I FREAKED OUT:

mario earrings

Earrings themed after the Mario 64 video game. Amazing. But they cost $40 dollars, and I’m willing to spend about $8 on a pair of earrings so… via

Loving eclectic things means that sometimes putting together a whole outfit comes out crazy. On our trip to SXSW I wore the Frida earrings and the Wonder Woman shoes at the same time. Ridiculous.

 Despite  these difficulties, I do look cute sometimes. Recently I’ve become very fond of a-line dresses and pencil skirts. Anything that gets me closer to looking like Joan from Mad Men.

me in skirt

Look at that! I am ready to be saucy and scandalous at my 1960’s advertisement agency.

This week I decided to go shopping for cute lace, or lace inspired dresses.

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via

I love this look. It puts me in a mood to frolic through forests, and drink pink lemonade out of mason jars or something.  

Old Navy was first. I have a love hate relationship with old navy. I like their jeans, but all of their other clothing has a tendency to be made of paper thin material, in baggy styles, and everything comes in horizontal stripes.

horizontal stripes

First rule of plus sized women: NO horizontal stripes. Let’s just agree to burn all of the horizontal stripes never speak of them again.

 me in orange

I liked this dress, but they had it in bright yellow or bright orange. Ugh. You’ll also notice that I block my face in all these shots. I wasn’t wearing a lot of make up and my hair was gross. As a consequence all you get to see is my creepy eyes staring at you over my cellphone.

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Also, their mannequins are so creepy that I feel uncomfortable spending more than 15 minutes in that store.

 So I had little success at Old Navy. After that I went to JC Penny and I freaked out. There were cute lace dresses everywhere.  I rushed off to the dressing room. I found one awesome blue lace dress that looked great once I got it on. Even though it cost more than $25 dollars I was totally ready to buy it. But then I couldn’t get it off.

It was a zip dress, so knowing that I wouldn’t be able to zip it up once I had it on, I squeezed it over my head. But then I couldn’t UNZIP it.  It was suddenly too small to go back over my boobs, too small to go down over my hips. This is why you should always try on cloths with a friend. The zipper got stuck. I turned red, I started sweating. It was probably the most traumatic changing room experience of my entire life.  I started envisioning a scene where the girls who work at JC penny would have to come into the dressing room and cut this dress off of me. It would be like the scene in the Nutty Professor where the firemen shake their heads in disgust as they have to cut Sherman Clump out of a too small sports car with the jaws of life, after he transforms back into his fat self.

nutty professor

There would be a lot of, “How did you get this dress on in the first place???” questions

Eventually I somehow got it off without busting any seams and got a larger size. It’s a pretty awesome dress, my boyfriend liked it especially. I don’t have any photos yet because I’m waiting to find a sunset lit meadow where I can pose in it.

girl in meadow

I’ve got to remember to be holding flowers, or spreading my arms wide, that’s important. via

That’s all for today readers, what are you doing right now in preparation for summer?

-Tara

Where I list the 5 most terrible songs from my IPOD

My coworkers are mean to me.

raul stealing

This is a picture of Raul, shamelessly stealing candy from my locker while I am not at work, taken by Jason, who ALSO shamelessly steals candy from my locker when I’m not at work.

Nah, just kidding, they aren’t really mean to me, they just tease me every day. (And take candy from my locker.) They like to tease me partly because I drop things at work on a continual basis, partly because I am what my boss Nuffie calls, “gullible” and what I call, “loyally trusting of what my supervisor Nuffie instructs me to do, even if it seems a little suspicious, because I am a good employee”, and partly because they all CLAIM that I listen to horrible music.

nickelback

Raul tells me I listen to horrible music and then makes us listen to Nickleback for an hour and a half. You be the judge of who has terrible music

I do not have terrible taste in music, I have eclectic taste in music.  I listen to everything from Eminem to Rogers and Hammerstein show tunes. The Beatles to N’SYNC. Frank Sinatra to tejano. I’m not a person who loves specific albums or artists, so this age of the itunes “buy it by the song” is PERFECT for me.

All that said though, I do have a few songs on my ipod that are somewhat embarrassing. I thought I would round up a few and try to explain myself.

5. The Pirates Who Don’t Do Anything-Veggie Tales

I LOVE this song. Do I even need to explain myself? I’ve told you about how silly I am, and about how I love silly things, and this song  opens up with an explanation about how it is going to be a silly song. It’s hard for me to imagine a situation where this song  could not cheer me up. It is a perfect marriage of all of the things that I love. Animation, silliness, randomness, and references to cereal mascots.

As a matter of fact, why did I even put this song on the list? I am not ashamed! Well a little bit. This song comes from a children’s program and it is embarrassing and awkward to explain when it comes on over the stereo at your adult job The boys in the deli were not satisfied with my explanation of, “But it’s so silly! They’re pirates, for one, ANNNNNNNDDD they don’t DO anything!” and then they made me turn off my ipod. Foiled again.

4. Year 3000-The Jonas Brothers

No matter how much you hate Justin Beiber I can assure you right now that the Jonas Brothers hate him much more for taking all of their spotlight. Way back around the year 2008, the Jonas brothers were pretty reasonably popular with the Disney crowd. I was not personally obsessed with them, I was a few years past my frantic, boy-band-loving stage ( oh don’t worry, that’s later on the list), but I DID go through this stage where I secretly enjoyed the Jonas Brothers, bought their new album as soon as it was released on itunes, and tried desperately to keep anyone from finding out about it.

It was weird. I would only listen to their album alone in my car, or when no one else was in the house. I tried to pretend that I liked them in a snarky ironic way, but I liked them for real. I was right to be ashamed though. For one thing, Nick Jonas sings like he has a perpetual sinus infection. I don’t even know how he manages it, he must be doing it on purpose, there’s no way you could sing that nasally without purposely trying. For a second thing, some of their lyrics leave a lot to be desired.

“He took me to the future in the flux thing, and I saw everything. Boy bands, and another one, and another one, and another one.”

Really? You didn’t take time to note any technological advances to transportation, communication, or medicine? Just a boy band…and another one…and another one.

Terrible. Did it make an appearance on my ipod? Yes.

3. Unbeatiful- Lesley Roy

The actual song is coming, but first, let me explain: As I told you earlier, I am a song person. Thus, I am very susceptible to one hit wonders. Often I will buy a song that’s playing on the radio, listen to it obsessively, and then never want to hear it again. This is why songs like, “Super Bass” by Nicki Minaj, and “One Thing” by One Direction are in my “Top 25 Most played” list. That is what happened with the song “Unbeautiful”, a one hit wonder if ever there was one. I know nothing about this woman, I don’t think anyone ever did. Her song was on the radio for 5 minutes, and then she disappeared forever, and rightly so.  You see, the song itself isn’t really terrible, but her voice, oh God her voice.

I feel like somewhere along the line this woman had a discussion with a vocal coach that went horribly awry.

Vocal Coach: Ok Leslie, there are a lot of young, blond, attractive female singers out there, you have to find a way to set yourself apart.

Leslie: Well how about I go for a Billie Holiday sound? Or maybe I could be known for my belting skills, like Mariah Carey or Whitney Houston?

Vocal Coach: Solid ideas, but I was thinking you could go for a sound somewhere in between the growling from Nickelback and an 80 year old chain smoker.

Leslie Roy:

Vocal coach: I smell a grammy nomination.

2. Tell me Tell me…baby-NSYNC

Most girls go through a boy band phase, and at the age of 11 I dove into mine with frenzy and abandon. NSYNC was my crack and I didn’t kick that stuff for years. I had all of the albums including the Christmas album, posters all over my room, fan magazines exhaustively detailing all of the band members favorite colors, an Nysnc backpack, concert tickets, and I had a pinky ring with Justin Timberlake’s face on it.

All of that is not really embarrassing within itself(Ok, yes the pinky ring is a little bad). Most girls go through that phase, and a lot of the songs are very catchy. I still maintain that “This I Promise You” is a very sweet, romantic, and GOOD song. I can’t really say that about this one though.

Tell me Tell me…baby. Just the title is ridiculous. And it is one of my favorite songs. Like right now there is a “favorite songs” playlist on my ipod and this song is on it. Right alongside “Blackbird” by the Beatles and “Your Song” by Elton John. It’s not even good, the lyrics are ridiculous! I have no excuse, I just irrationally love the hell out of it.

1. Think Pink! -Barbie, Teresa, and Christie

Oh goodness, I’m so embarrassed. How do I even begin to explain this song? Even people who listen to and love the previous songs on this list have made fun of me for “Think Pink”. Let’s take a journey, shall we? All the way back to 1998.

 taras blog18

Oh God I take it back! Go back to the future where I know about hair conditioner!

Back in 1998 when I was ten years old, and still very much interested in Barbies, and all things associated with that brand, I found an album called “Beyond Pink!” at walmart. It wasn’t even heavily advertised by the company, I just sort of found it, sitting all by its lonesome. I listened to the samples of songs like, “Boys will be Boys“, “From the Jump”, and “Rainbow”, and was instantly charmed.

The great thing about the album “Beyond Pink” is that it isn’t like, “Songs inspired by Barbie”, or “Songs to listen to when you are playing with Barbie” No, it is songs BY Barbie. On itunes the actual artists listed on this album are Barbie, Teresa, and Christie…as in the dolls.

Barbie-Beyond-Pink

Yes. You can purchase this on itunes. $9.90. This is the miracle of modern technology and the internet at its finest.

I wore this CD out y’all. I was all about girl power, and pink, and rainbows for at least a year. Then as soon as I became a teenager I became intensely embarrassed at ever having owned such a dorky, childish thing.

But I kept it.

And then when I was an adult who had an ipod for the first time, guess what CD got uploaded just like all the rest?

Think Pink! Is definitely the stand out from this album. To this day, if I’m feeling low, and I need a little “You go girl!” style encouragement, this is what I listen to. I remember to Think Pink! Don’t judge me.

That’s all the embarrassment for today readers. I hope you have a wonderful day, and if you are feeling low, just let me offer these words of encouragement,

“Seek every possibility, take every opportunity, you know you got it goin’ on, THINK PINK!”

It’s the color of the world.

-Tara

Where I treat my microwave like a time bomb

This might come as a shock to you all, but I am not always doing embarrassing, strange, or interesting things. Sometimes my weeks are pretty dull, and as such, I have trouble coming up with things to talk about on the blog.

Lucky for my however I was given a free topic by my old high school friend Christy over at avoidingatrophy

Christy and I were both in choir at Sandra Day O’connor high school, and we both participated in several plays together, including The Wizard of OZ, where she was Dorthy, and as i’ve mentioned before, I was Glinda.

scary me

I don’t have a photo of us together as Dorthy and Glinda. Instead, here’s this picture of us after a choir banquet where she looks lovely, and I look the most insane that I have ever looked in any photo ever.

Christy is a very good writer who tells many insightful and hilarious stories on her blog, and she has very nicely nominated me for something called a Liebster award. As far as I can tell, a Liebster award is a way to promote blogs that have fewer than 200 followers. To qualify you just have to follow these simple rules:

The Rules

1. Link back to the person who nominated you again, here is Christy’s lovely blog

2. Write 11 facts about yourself

3. Answer the 11 questions from the person who nominated you

4. Nominate 11 blogs with 200 or less followers. Notify them.

5. Create 11 questions for those bloggers you’ve nominated to answer.

Let us begin!

Facts about me:

1.When I cook food in the microwave, I do not like to let it count all the way down to zero. To give myself something to do while I wait, I walk around the kitchen in a circle, then when the microwave is closing in on ten seconds, I time the speed of my walk so that I can reach the microwave just as it is reaching 1 second remaining. That way I can fling the microwave door open just before the beeping begins, in the same way that I might frantically disable a bomb as the timer ticks down. It is absolutely the most OCD thing about me.

2. When I have children I want to have a son who I will name “Paul” after my dad. Partly out of respect and love for my father, but also partly so that I can call the two of them, “Big Paulie and Little Paulie” in the accent of an Italian gangster out of “The Godfather.”

3. I am not actually 6’2, i’m really like 6’1 and a half. When people ask me how tall I am I always explain this to them, and then follow it by saying, “But I just say 6’2, because it saves time.” It saves no time, because I give this full explanation to everyone I meet. I never just say, “I am 6’2”.

4. I was 5 pounds and 14 ounces when I was born. People are always shocked by this, like they expected someone as tall as me to say, “I was 14 pounds at birth. The doctor had to use a crane to get me out of there.” No, my mother was a normal sized woman, and I was a small baby. What has happened to my growth since cannot be explained.

5.I don’t like pickles. It’s literally one of the only foods that I will not shove freely into my face.

6. When I was a little girl who would forget to pray at meals, I once offered a prayer to God that went, “Thank you God and Jesus for this meal, and for every other meal that I will eat forever.” I am still arguing with people about whether or not this prayer counts, and all my subsequent meal blessings have been superfluous.

7.I like strong cheeses. Really strong cheeses. I am one of the few people I know who can just eat chunks of blue cheese by itself.

8. When I was little I wanted to marry Michealangelo from the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Not in a weird way, I was like seven. So our marriage would have consisted of hanging out, eating pizza, and high-fivin’.

9. I’m left handed, and this caused me to be unable to tie my shoes until I was like, 10 years old. Either that, or it was just my failure at normal human coordination in general. I’m blaming left handedness.

10. I don’t like horseback riding. I had a bad experience as a 13 year old, and have avoided it ever since.

11. 4th wall jokes, jokes involving puns, and general silliness in movies and tv are my absolute favorite. So it should go without saying that the muppets are one of my favorite things ever.

Christy’s 11 questions:

1. Describe your best birthday ever.

My Best Birthday is also my worst birthday. Is that possible? For my 23rd birthday I went up to visit my best friend Megan in San Marcos, and she took me to all the college bars, and just let me drink freely. I fell off the wagon of smart decisions completely. I had 10 or 11 drinks, a drunk stranger wanted to take his picture with me and I allowed it to happen, I was a happy girl. Until the moment at 2 am when suddenly it became my worst birthday, and I was lying on Megan’s bathroom floor thinking, “If I have alcohol poisoning, it’s going to be so embarrassing for Megan to have to call the fire department.”

me drunk

Having a good time.

2. If you had all of the talent and ability in the world, what career would you pursue?

I would have multiple careers. As a child I had it all planned out. I would be a singer/actress in my early 20’s, followed by a rich political career that culminated in me becoming president at the age of 36(2024 is my first eligible election year, in case you’re interested), followed by some human rights work in third world countries(specifically women’s rights), lastly followed by being a writer in my retirement.

3. What is your spirit animal?

If you asked me this when I was 12 I would say a tiger. As a kid my favorite animal was the tiger, but as an adult I now recognize that my spirit animal is the Platypus. Remember when I said that I love ridiculous and silly things?

platypus-003

LOOK AT IT. Its babies are called puggles. Sometimes I believe that God made this animal just for me, to make me laugh and to assure me that he has a sense of humor.

4. What is something that irritates you and why?

It irritates me when people post angry rants about incorrect grammar(or is it grammer?) on facebook. Settle down everyone, this isn’t my Master’s thesis, I’m not drafting up intelligence papers for the Pentagon, I’m telling you about how I’m going to the Cheesecake factory for dinner. If I use the word “your” when I should use “you’re” we will all survive.

5. Which is better: ants or aliens? Please provide an educated response.

Aliens. Because this exists:

simpsons-aliens-kang-kodos

Or wait…maybe ants are better because of this:

a bugs life

I can’t decide, let me get back to you on that.

6. Where is your “second home”?

red river

This place

This is a mountain town called Red River. My dad’s side of the family has been going here for a week during most summers for the past 50 years. My grandparent’s ashes are spread here, my ashes will go here. It’s kind of a big deal.

7. What is your favorite blog post you’ve ever written?

It’s hard to pick, but probably this one:Where I tell the story of prom

I got to ride in a limo AND a taxi during prom night, it was an exciting night for me.

8. When you were a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up?

We talked about this, I couldn’t choose one career as a kid. It might interest you to know that as a child I never ever wanted to be a teacher or a doctor. While I’ve since flirted with the idea of being a teacher, I have never wavered in my indifference to a career in the medical profession. It is not for me.

9. What are some products that you love?

This thing:

the labbit2

The morning after that birthday we talked about, where I’m trying to recover in Megan’s apartment.

Ok, you’re all going to think I’m weird with this one. This is a labbit. My best friend received one from her then boyfriend several years ago, and I loved it immediately. I am a weird person I guess because every time I go to her apartment I like to pick it up and stroke it. It’s soft. I inexplicably liked it so much that Megan got me one of my very own for Christmas last year. It sits in my room still, and yes, I like to stroke it occasionally. In an absolutely non-creepy way.

the labbit

Again, absolutely not creepy.

10. What is your least favorite sound?

That squeaky sound Styrofoam makes when you rub it together.

11. Do you have a favorite quote or saying?

My favorite things change pretty frequently, so I’ll give you a quote that’s been sticking with me lately, “Jesus, friend of sinners, open our eyes to the lives at the end of our pointing fingers.” Because it is very important to me to try to see someone else’s side of the story, and to be merciful and kind towards others.

The Blogs:

This might disqualify me, but sadly I don’t know of a whole 11 blogs that fit the qualifications, which is alright because I think that this whole exercise is more about getting people exposure, and connecting bloggers. So I can refer you to this blog:

sweet treats by catherine

By a former coworker who always has clever things to say about her family. I again insist to you that you must read Christy’s blog, and also this blog:

Filing Jointly…Finally

which is by Lauren. She has a somewhat large following, but hasn’t really hit the big time yet. I urge you to check her out, especially if you like me. She gave me a lot of inspiration when I was starting this blog.

My Questions:

This is awkward because there are very few people to answer my made up questions, but I’ll list them anyways, because it’s a fun exercise if you need something to blog about (as I did today)

1.Who is the strangest person that you have ever met, and where?

2. If you could meet one famous dead person who would it be, and why?

3. Where is your dream vacation?

4. If you could make a television show, what would the genre be, and what would be your clever title?

5.What is the most adventurous thing you have ever done?

6. What is the most horrific injury that you have ever had, and how did you get it?

7. If you could only keep three possessions (besides clothes) what would you keep?

8. What is your favorite place to shop?

9. Would you rather be a sports superstar or a famous actor?

10. What is your biggest quirk?

11. Cherry or Strawberry poptarts?

That is all for today readers, what interesting questions would you like me to answer next?

-Tara