Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Makin' it to May: Panic Attack

Right now I'm in the midst of week 4 of semester 4 of 5 semesters to complete and I'm surprisingly feeling pretty collected. Week 5 is usually a bitch, so I'm bracing for that — stocking up on wine and migraine medication, although I'd prefer something along the lines of uppers.

I'm also fresh off a trip home to KC to see one of my dear old friends get hitched. The feeling of depression that follows after a trip home is now shaken off after about a day of being back in Denver. It used to be much longer, so I suppose that's good news. I just really miss good, real friends that I have something in common with besides how much school sucks ass. There are some potentials here of course, but being in a dysfunctional marriage with a bastard like grad school limits my ability to be close to people.

Of course, I can't blame it all on that. I'm not a normal person and anybody who reads this thing or knows me on any level above acquaintance knows that. I have a dirty mouth, a strange sense of humor and most people I meet would have to snort a line of cocaine and have a few shots of whiskey before they can relate. I'm lucky to have found a few fellow, loving weirdos along the way most of which reside in KC, hence the depression after leaving. In fact, Pat (the still boyfriend, but no longer bearded : () and I were sitting and having some drinks with my friend Erin over the weekend when she started talking candidly about her trip to Romania several years ago. Their solution to not being able to shower everyday was swiping their pits and vaginas with baby wipes, "because that's where the smell would probably come from." Then, she told us a story about how her friend shat out a turd that looked just like a penis. Pat then turned to me and said, "I see why you guys are friends."

Who the hell talks about that kind of stuff so matter-of-factly in casual conversation? That would be me and the people I get along with the best. My few and far between besties. Oh beautiful, irreverent tards of Denver, please flock to me. I need some good pals. Or, those who I already know and have started to love here, bust out of your shells. I'm dying for non-business related, non-stilted, consistent conversation and friendship. There have been a few good nights here and there, so there's some hope.

However, I really wanted to write this blog about three weeks ago when I had just gotten back from KC again. Yes, I went there twice in three weeks. The first time was sort of unplanned for my aunt's 80th birthday, which was the weekend before school started. That uneasy feeling followed me on the plane back to Denver, then when I was getting my stuff to leave the plane, one of my rings fell out of my purse and a guy found it on the floor asking, "Is this yours?" I had no idea it had even fallen out, so I start frantically looking for the other one, tears welling up, and eventually found it, but it was too late. That little incident released the dread and the worry and the oh-dear-god-I-can't-fucking-do-this-anymore feelings that have been building for several weeks.

Pat picked me up and knew something was wrong immediately. Of course, I didn't really know what was wrong at the time, so we just got in the car and started driving. About halfway home, BAM, a full on panic attack hit — sharp pains in my chest, dizziness, sobbing, head between the knees, general feeling that I'm going to die right then in the passenger seat of the F-150. Denver, for me, is associated with all things new. Some good and some bad. The minute I set foot here, I was in school, shoving a round peg in a square hole as a creative girl in the strategic world of business, so it's also associated with stress. My mentality was rejecting this place.

I was pretty screwed up mentally for about three days after that. The adjustment to a complete life change is taking longer than expected. The year mark has come and gone and I'm still in part time adjustment mode. Plenty of people move away from their family, friends and home, but most of the time they're familiar with the role they will take on when they get there. I wasn't. A location change, on top of a lifestyle change, on top of a career change is the recipe for head explosion and mine has nearly do so many of times. I love it here a lot more than I hate it and I'm fine far more often than I'm not fine, so I'll count that as progress.

Now, a few weeks later, I'm good to go. When I make it to May, I have a feeling much of this will be lifted off my shoulders especially if I have an awesome, creative job that pays me triple what I would have made if I didn't ever go to grad school. That's the incentive to plow through these next couple of months.

A word of advice if you're thinking about changing your life like I did — get the wine and the uppers ready because it's a bumpy ride that gets worse in different ways before it gets better.

Damn you May, hurry your pokey ass up.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Makin' it to May: To Fly, Or Not To Fly

This is at least the third time I've witnessed it, or been in the aftermath of it — somebody flying the coop and taking people with them. This time I've sat quietly as people ran around with their hair on fire. I listen and I'm observant — that's how you learn things. I can just feel when somebody is angry or stressed and it permeates throughout the entire office. I'm also nosy, like really goddamn nosy, and I didn't have to prod very much to find out the basic details. In this case, I would have rather not known what was happening. It's that feeling where you wish for a corner office instead of a cubicle, not for the prestige and the extra room for a La-Z-Boy recliner, but just for the glorious-ness of a door that you can close allowing you to hide. Especially this time. In the past, people were pissed off and spiteful in a situation like this, but this time they're sad, upset and disturbed...

Betrayal and backstabbing — it's part of business and a lot of people's grand scheme to get ahead. It's not a practice I choose to partake in though. I've worked for terrible companies and left without making a scene — just me walking out the door at the end of my two week notice with my talent — something they can never take away from me — was statement enough. I've also worked with people who think they work for a shitty company and whine and bitch all day long, when in reality they don't work for a shitty company — their attitude is shitty and they're lazy.

We have to work from the time we're 22 to usually at least 65 — 43 years of our lives we'll be slaving away behind a desk, on the phone or in the field and if we're lucky, we'll have one or two good bosses thrown in there that we can call mentors. And, if we're really lucky we'll get to be somebody's good boss one day too. Unfortunately, the rest of those bosses are likely to be either incompetent or just mean...shitty.

Shitty companies, shitty bosses and shitty people — all causes of statement makers who decide to display a grand gesture of leaving, doing their own thing and taking people with them. The shitty people are the worst.

I've always believed in being humbly ambitious. And, before all the seasoned business people clutch me to their bosom smack me in the face and say, 'you're too young to know shit about shit,' I must say that I've witnessed this occasion enough to know that it's wrong. There's a right way to leave and do your own thing and there's a wrong way and there's no better lesson than to watch it happen the wrong way over and over again like I have.

The best Karma to have is when a company is sad to see you go, but happy that you're spreading your wings for growth. They never say good riddance, but only good luck. It's a lesson I learned a long time ago and only proves itself to be more true as I move from one stage to the next. No matter how shitty your company or your boss is, don't grand gesture yourself into a hole. Be graceful about it. Don't be one of those shitty people even if you think they deserve it. Do it the right way and you'll have far fewer ghosts following you around to sabotage your mind and your plans.

But what about the shitty people? I've never really thought about what it will be like when it happens to me. One day I will be somebody's good (hopefully) boss and it may happen to me. Then, I will have my corner office and my La-Z-Boy, but that door is not going to help me hide from anything. How will I handle it? Lawsuits, firing and threatening people, carrying around intense anger — I've seen all of that too, but none of that is the right way to handle it. Of course, bending over and just taking it isn't the right thing either. As I watch it unfold from afar, trying unsuccessfully to hide in my cubicle, maybe I'll finally get to see how to handle it the right way. However, I think Starbucks may have to substitute for my corner office some of the time. People running around with their hair on fire is quite distracting to an intern with a lot of learning to do.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Poop Roulette

Along with my lovely bearded boyfriend came a sweet, dopey black Labrador named Maggie...or Marge, depending on the mood you're in. She's incredibly smart, yet slightly retarded, but in an endearing way like most Labs are. She's special in that she loves to squeeze between you and the wall while going out for a walk, wrapping the leash around you twice instead of taking the logical way around. She farts so loud that the first time she let out a big "brrrrrrrffff," I looked at Pat and said, quite astonished, since we weren't quite to the we-fart-in-front-of-each-other stage of our relationship at the time, "Was that you?!" Yeah, sure, blame it on the dog!

I've personally banned her, and at this point, I think Pat has too, from sleeping on anything except for her own bed as she has a tendency to pee in her sleep on occasion even though she takes medicine for it. She grunts and groans and whines like Chewbacca and every morning when I wake up, she's up, either staring at me creepily from across the room or staring at me creepily while breathing heavily in my face.

I've gotten to know her quite well since I take her in when Pat travels for work. I've even kind of gotten used to her incontinence issues, but I had no idea she had a poop issue too until the other night. Yes, I'm going to talk about dogs pooping. Let's recall the number of times I've listened to mothers in the midst of potty training their kids talk about ad nauseum their grievances over why their child refuses to shit in the toilet. I love my friends who are mothers, but I can only handle hearing about the size, shape, consistency and frequency of a baby's bowel movements for so long. Sometimes we need to give the ass-to-potty, poo poo, pee pee, talk a rest and chat about more adult things...like dogs pooping.

One night recently, I was walking the two mongrels through my neighborhood while listening to one of my favorites, Grace Potter and the Nocturnals on my iPod. After several blocks, I figured they had done what they were going to do for the night and I was growing really tired of the weaving back and forth and stopping every three inches to smell something apparently intoxicating on the grass. So, I decided to reel them in, one on either side of me and walk the last two blocks home briskly, enjoying my music.

Just as we were crossing the street to head inside my apartment, I feel a tug on Maggie's side and turn to find her in the dog pooping squat position, looking up at me like it was a perfectly normal thing and absolutely not budging. She just stopped to take a shit right in the middle of 19th Avenue.

I yanked her backwards as her claws tried to clench the asphalt. Dragging her out of the busy street was not what I had in mind because I thought she would respond to my yelling and tugging, stand up and walk back to the sidewalk, but she would not leave the squat position.

I'm going, 'What the hell is this, poop roulette?' The dog had blocks and blocks to do her thing, but will only shit when she and her handler are in inherent danger. "It makes me feel ALIVE!" She would say, if she could talk. Or maybe, "hey, I gotta poop. NOW. Let's stop before we cross the street." Yeah, that would have been helpful.

She held strong, as I used every ounce of strength to pull her 70 pound ass to safety on the sidewalk, which is where she deposited a couple measly presents. I was like, "Is that all you've got?! I just risked my life for that?!" If you're going to try to kill yourself and me, at least make it worth the while...Please, by all means, shit a mountain and I wouldn't have even been mad.

No harm done, I guess, except for the dozen people or so who witnessed me wrestling a pooping dog across the street. I love dogs, but seriously, they are so goddamn retarded sometimes.





Oh heeeeeey! Der, der, der, I like to poop in the street!



Friday, August 5, 2011

Makin' it to May: Baby Executive

A few days ago while driving through the three square miles of concrete jungle in Denver — lots of parks here, ya know — I caught a rare glimpse of myself in the driver's seat in the mirrored glass of a skyscraper. I looked like a child driving a car. People probably look over and say, 'why the hell is that 12-year-old driving a vehicle?!'

Recently I've graduated from looking 16 to about 22 to strangers at first glance. I'm not sure how this happened since nothing has changed physically, so I'm assuming its the setting I'm in. Of course looking 22 with the label of intern attached to your name is not so good for a 28-year-old grad student trying to fight her way into a serious, completely new career.

It's amazing how differently people treat you in the workplace when you look younger than you really are. I've come to adopt the philosophy that you should never assume anything. Always encourage and never belittle, even in your mind, because you never know what somebody has been through, regardless of their age. Apparently most of the rest of the world does not agree with me.

When co-workers tried to send me on errands, interrupted me when I tried to talk or scoffed knowingly when I said I had one more year of school left I just wanted to grab the hair on the sides of their head, shake them and say, "DO YOU KNOW WHAT I'VE BEEN THROUGH TO BE HERE RIGHT NOW?! DID YOU EVEN BOTHER TO ASK YOURSELF THAT QUESTION BEFORE YOU REACTED IN SUCH A WAY?!" God, it's irritating. I'm already done with school and I've already had a career. This is my second career after a layoff, a subsequent long term stint in unemployment, a whole lot of other bullshit mixed in followed by a complete life do-over. Now I go to grad school full time — because I have to — I have three jobs and I'm working my ass off. People twice my age haven't had an "adventure" even half as eventful as mine. Everyday I ask myself, what am I DOING? But, like I said, gotta make it to May.

Now that the truth is out that I've aged six years over the past six weeks, people have now stopped trying to send me on errands and what not, but it's still a bit of a struggle. Recently I've been included in a lot of projects in which an intern is priledged to take part, but I'm walking this fine line between intern in the learning phase and seasoned professional. On one hand, the higher ups look to me for answers and on the other hand they like to remind me that I have a lot to learn — knowing smiles that say, 'oh honey, just stop' all around. Starting the marketing department at a company is not an easy task, especially for an intern in the midst of a career change. I know what I'm doing as far as marketing more than anybody else in the room, yet I'm far, far from a seasoned marketer. Frankly, I've been handed a job that I don't know how to do completely — just bits and pieces of it from what I've learned from school and not the whole picture from scratch. This would probably even be a huge challenge for a veteran in the field. I feel like a kid walking around in business casual, yet I know I'm not incompetent.

I want to be someplace where I'm properly coached, mentored and encouraged like an intern is supposed to be, not belittled and pressured, but does that exist in the limbo that I'm living in? It's a situation where I am glad to admit the extent of my abilities, but I was fed to the sharks anyway. I can handle it, but handling it gracefully and up to expectations is another story. Will this help me learn or only show me how badly I can fail and screw up any chance at a new career that I've worked so hard for?

Twenty eight is still pretty damn young. I've experienced so much, yet have so much to learn and I'm caught some place right in the middle — not young and stupid, but not old and wise. This place sucks. Get me out of here.

Dear god, is it May yet?

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Uncommon Hallway Decor

There's this little game I like to play every time I enter or exit my apartment building that's called, "What the hell will I find in my hallway today?"

It's pretty much the best thing ever to live in an apartment building in downtown Denver full of rat bastard children. I have now become so old and crotchety in my 28 years of life that I'm now calling anybody under 22 (25 if you're a real asshole) "children" and "rat bastards." As a party girl that's slowed her roll a bit, I can understand the overwhelming desire to get completely shitfaced on a Wednesday afternoon, for no other reason than the fact that you can and beer tastes really good.

Forget going to my apartment pool on a weekend unless you want to be exposed to several areola slips, endless movie quotations followed by relentless giggling and a giant knot on the back of your head from being hit with a flying can of beer while trying to enjoy your dip in the pool. It's like Spring Break, except I'm the wrinkly old bitch that unfortunately forgot to do her research before picking a vacation destination. I think about how I used to be at 21, 23, hell, even 26, but now I have shit to do — work, papers to write, books to read, things to study for, people to see, places to travel, plans to make...plus, I really can't deal with the hangovers as well as I used to. I'm still known to drink two bottles of Malbec on a Saturday night single handedly, dying my lips and teeth a sexy shade of purple, but now my labia is no longer hanging out of a 6-inch jean skirt while I'm doing it. I also refrain from screeching at octaves only dogs can hear and wait to puke until the next morning like a real grown up. I look at these rat bastard children and think, 'Damn, I was never that annoying." Then I reminisce a bit and conclude, 'Yes, yes I was. Probably worse.'

However, there is one thing that I never did as a drunk, rat bastard and that is break shit, or leave things for other people that I don't even know to pick up. People just love to play SMASH! with things that aren't theirs or puke all over a public bathroom, without getting a drop into the actual toilet and just leave it. Which brings me back to the "What the hell will I find in my hallway today?" game. Besides my asshole neighbor who left her rotting, corpse smelling trash outside her doorway in the indoor hallway for two days, I have quite a running list of random things I've found, with photos for effect:



Scattered pieces of dry cat food. For those of you who don't know, cat food is like crack to dogs. It was fun trying to keep Andy away from it.




A trail of gummy bears up the stairs. "Ooo, piece of candy! Ooo piece of candy!" Andy licked all of them every time we hiked up those stairs from a walk...never eating, just licking.



Turning the corner out of the elevator right around Halloween, I saw a tiny, shredded two-piece slutty costume laying in the middle of the hallway. Apparently one of the rat bastards was feeling frisky and couldn't wait until he was in the actual apartment to rip his girlfriend's pasties off.




I've had to sit down in an elevator to prevent my hungover ass from getting sick in one a couple of times, but I've never eaten my breakfast in one...or beside one. I found actual dishes, not paper plates, but an empty bowl with cereal remnants and an empty glass sitting by the elevator. Either somebody was in a hurry, they have a stray bum they're feeding, or they're just an asshole.



I found this guy just a couple of weeks ago — a whole, ripe banana with the peel still on just chillin' in the hallway. Why you would drop your banana and leave it is beyond me. There's not even a five second rule involved because there's a peel you have to take off before eating it. And, if they were trying to be funny with the whole slip-on-the-banana-peel thing, they failed miserably. I guess if you can't expect a drunkie to walk a straight line, you can't expect him to peel his banana either.



Apparently somebody is doing home prostate and gynecological exams because a crusty latex glove was found squished against the hallway wall once. I told myself it was probably for a costume or something to make myself feel better...nothing like catching an STD from your hallway.

And now an actual video for the grand finale:



This is what my roommate and I refer to as "The Murder Fan." This is probably the third or fourth time a Murder Fan has been created since I've lived in rat bastard land. We'll wake up in the morning to this strange noise coming from the hallway, look outside and find that another Murder Fan has been born overnight. What I can only assume happens is that some drunk rat bastard decides it would be funny to fling himself into the air and bust one of the wooden fan blades off one of the many hallway fans. We call it the Murder Fan because it looks and sounds like it will fly off it's base at any moment, most likely when you're walking under it, and decapitate your ass. Even Andy's like, 'Oh heeeellllll no,' and scampers past it as fast as he can. Eventually somebody comes to turn off the fan and make it less murdery, however, they never actually get fixed. At this rate, all we'll have in the hallway are Murder Fans.

The next thing I'll probably find in my hallway is a decapitated body. I think it's time to move. Let's hope the Murder Fans show me mercy until then and take out a rat bastard instead.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Makin' it to May: Progress Report

I find it pretty shitty tragic that this monster called graduate business school I've taken on has prevented me from doing a lot of things that I love — writing for instance — and so I had a revelation the other day at work. As my summer class comes to a close this week, I will have three real-ish weeks of summer and then the fall semester starts.

As my eyes welled with tears and all my internal organs wrenched simultaneously in protest at the thought of starting another year of non stop exams, group projects, late nights, breakdowns, lectures and overbearing, relentless stress of all of that combined with personal problems...I stopped and thought, I'm in the home stretch. I have eight classes and basically eight months of school until I graduate with two Master's degrees in Marketing and Management. In the grand scheme of life that's nothing...I just have to make it to May.

Let me break it down for you: Graduate school sucks balls...big, gross, sweaty, dangly old man balls. Well, let's be more specific if you can handle it - graduate business school sucks balls. There's a huge difference between getting a Master's in home economics and getting one in business. This process has been the single most difficult thing I've ever done in my life and I love it when people say, "Oh I went to grad school and it wasn't that hard. You bitch a lot." And then I find out they got a Master's in ass wiping, online, in nine months and I go, "oh yeah, oh that's nice...go fuck yourself."

Nobody told me it was going to suck this bad. I remember fairly early on in the process my dad called and asked how it was going and I was all, "Yeah, it sucks...a lot. I hate it." And he was all, "Oh yeah, I hated grad school too. It really sucked." Then I was all, "WHAT?!" I don't regret my decision as a lot of good things have come from it already, but I'll admit, I had absolutely no goddamn clue what I was getting myself into.

I'm not saying it's over in May, I'm just saying that first and probably hardest hurdle that I have to clear for a career change will be over. So, I thought I'd document the home stretch in a series on my blog called, "Makin' it to May." My goal is write at least once a week or more if I'm feeling really compelled, a.k.a. pissed off, inspired or otherwise not completely in shambles, crying on the bathroom floor, about this journey. It's a good way to keep writing when I don't feel like I have the time, patience or sanity to keep it together.

Another rule: No playing nicey, nice...I don't do that and just because some of these things might be business related and professors and everyone else jumps down our throats about being PC and non offensive on Facebook and blogs and anything else that might pop up, I'm not doing that. It's not who I am. Sometimes I say fuck and I think just about everybody else does too. Get over it. That doesn't mean I'm going to say it to a client. Sometimes I make weird faces when people take pictures of me. It's fun and I like it. If you don't hire me because I'm fake picking my nose in a picture on Facebook, that's pathetic and I'd rather work for somebody that has a sense of humor anyway. Business school demands that you differentiate yourself from the crowd, yet wants us to hide who we really are. I don't think so. How about I differentiate myself by never being fake...tactful, but not fake...and never having a stick up my ass, so I can better relate to other people? There we go.

This is how I will keep myself sane throughout year two of gradate business school, the monster that has taken over my life and I intend to do it uncensored...if there's no outlet for frustration, then it becomes resentment — a much worse trait to have than an off-the-wall personality...

As my year mark in Denver quickly approaches, I think about all the firsts I've had here — first time being away from my family and home, taking public transportation, navigating a strange city, visiting New York, traveling and studying abroad (China)...and so many more that I'm not thinking of. I'll have to have a separate entry for all of them. A year ago, I had no job and now I have three. THREE! I'm a marketing intern, which started for school credit and will hopefully evolve into something more; a freelance writer for a realtor and back to my old digs as a manager at a doggie daycare - the same company I used to work for in Kansas. The trick will be to juggle all of these once school starts again...I fear I might explode first.

Denver is alive and there's so many things to do. I really have come to love it here, but I'm finding it surprisingly difficult to make friends. I sound like that loser-y, dorky kid with braces and taped glasses right now, but seriously. People are just busy or preoccupied or maybe it's just me. I'd love to have some really good girlfriends here, but I guess that's just something that becomes increasingly more difficult as you get older. People have husbands and children, work, school and some people are just flat out shitty. I've always felt like I was one of those people that didn't want to exclude anybody, took the new person into a group and made them feel welcome - unless they were really annoying. ; ) But, Denver and many of the people I've met haven't been so welcoming to me, the new girl, in this sense. I have several people that I know - acquaintances, friends - I guess, but none that I have that closeness with — at least not yet. After a year of calling and realizing it's often like pulling teeth to get some people to do anything and then never getting a phone call in return, I'm exhausted. One sided things just don't work and my first experience away from my many great friends in Kansas City hasn't always been a pleasant one. It's something I'm struggling with and while I'm trying to come to terms with and accept all the reasons why it's so hard, I'm still hoping it improves.

One thing that is going well that typically does not is my dating life. I actually met the big, bearded Patrick back in October when I was dating the typical raging douchebag that I usually date, then one of my friends from school reintroduced us in January. Six months later he's still here laughing when I burp so loud the walls shake and my Tourette's make me say the most out of context, strange things. I'm not sure why he's stuck around through the shitstorm that is "Makin' it to May," but I'd say he's definitely been a positive and all around good thing in my life.

I still miss home, I still miss my family, friends and the city that will always be my true home, but I've definitely found a pretty happy place here.

Stay tuned...you never know when the monster might change that perspective completely.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Movie Magic Part II

I don't know what's wrong with me. I used to get on stage several times a year in spandex and tutus and perform gravity and seemingly human being defying routines with grace, poise and sometimes a touch of psycho stage presence, but now all I do is fall over, break shit and hurt myself. Mind you, this is when I'm walking through my normal life, not on stage. *SIGH*

I often write about my clumsy mishaps because I just can't believe that one human being has accidentally re-created so many scenes from slap stick comedy movies. I'm an observant, attention to detail person that has major issues with household appliances, performing daily tasks such as showering and walking and wardrobe malfunctions. My last post on this right here explains some of my finer moments in life...oh but wait, there's more.

All of my misfortunes are unexpected of course, but I've now started to brace myself as soon as my feet hit the tile of the kitchen floor. The kitchen loves to attack me even though we've become fairly good friends within the past couple of years.

The day before yesterday Once upon a time, I reached for the cabinet high above my head, knowing full well that I would probably have to scale the stove to find what I was after since I'm quite vertically challenged. However, when I opened the cabinet, a box of pasta decided to fling itself out of it's apparent prison and onto my head where it busted open causing hundreds of rigatonis to rain down upon me and all over the kitchen. The sound was a classic *CRASH* followed by the distinct hollowed noise of an avalanche of dry, tubular pasta hitting tile.

Andy, who will eat anything that has fallen on the floor, including the chicken bones left on the curb by bums that I routinely have to pry out of his mouth, ran from his lounging spot on the couch to inspect and immediately began to nom nom nom on the rigatoni carnage. I just stood there staring for a good minute trying to decide if I should laugh, cry, get pissed etc, before I finally checked my hair for any stragglers and went to grab the broom.

Apparently I was in a good mood that day. Not even one cuss word escaped my mouth...until of course a few hours later, I went to the same cabinet, opened it and a box of raisins kamikazed itself out of nowhere and pinged off my forehead. "WHAT. THE. FUCK!" I yelled, picking the box that had apparently come to life off the stove and tossing it back in the cabinet. Then I wondered, 'why the hell do we have raisins? Gross.'

Then a particular memory of an attack by an inanimate object in the kitchen came flooding back. Junior year in college, long before I knew how to cook anything besides Ramen and Easy Mac, I opened a cabinet at eye level and was immediately assaulted by a flying, 400 pound plate that hit me right in the mouth. I distinctly remember my roommate coming to see what the commotion was about and exclaiming, "Did you break my Crate and Barrel plate?!" "No," I said, my voice coming out muffled because my hands were covering my mouth, nursing my fat, bloody lip, "My face broke it's fall." When people asked what happened to my lip, I just said I got in a fight. I left out that I was actually punched in the mouth by a goddamn plate.

I really must start wearing stilts in the kitchen...or just not going in there at all.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Teach Me How To Be In Debt

My first semester of grad school was full of surprises and learning experiences, meeting new friends...and assholes with God complexes. Business school is the epitome of a "man's world," an expression I've always hated. I spent four months being partly amused, partly ferocious and partly diplomatic trying to coax some of my male counterparts out of the stone age and into a more productive world where they work with me instead of against me. It was ridiculous. I guess it's still hard for some guys to accept a woman as their equal or better rather than just an ego stroking, sandwich making, baby machine. Yes, because I'm spending 40K-ish on an MBA for a shot at domesticity...yeah, not gonna happen.

For example, quoting a certain exasperated ex-boyfriend of mine, "God! Why do you have to be such a guy all the time?!"

Well, somebody had to be the man in that relationship...pansy ass...

Anyway, the combination of complexity, time consumption and fighting cave men was exhausting (and resulted in kick ass grades, by the way, so suck it GMAT test creators. My crappy score on your crappy exam apparently indicates the exact opposite of what you believe it to.), so I spent the last month treating myself to some much needed and well deserved R, R & I — Rest, Relaxation and Intoxication.

I drove the nine hours back to Kansas City a few days after my last final exam and ended up staying three and a half weeks. A little longer than expected, but I blame that on my love for Kettle One dirty martinis, a snowstorm and a dead car battery.

There also might have been an incident involving me parading around town in a hideous Christmas sweater, green tights and red pumps, then waking up in said sweater, tights and pumps; another hilarious "Recession Christmas" with the girlfriends where we buy each other horrendous thrift store gems as well as proudly being one of the winos and showing off my mad Catch Phrase skills (which are directly related to the amount of wine I drink) at family Christmas.

An extremely hazy New Year's Eve followed, where I sported sweatpants and tennis shoes under my dress with my real shoes in my purse while walking running to and from the party in frigid temperatures.

While at the party, I was carried around by a large, hairy man that I didn't know, then back at my date's apartment, I gallivanted around his kitchen while eating Doritos and Oatmeal Cream Pies and sending many ridiculous text messages all while he was passed out in his bed in all his clothes.

The next morning afternoon, I was reminded of my shenanigans when I looked at my phone to check the time and found the smeary remnants of my drunken Oatmeal Cream Pie binge all over it. When I finally got my legs to work and decided to head home to die in my own bed, I was also reminded of how much champagne I drank the night before by puking in the bushes outside of the apartment. Classy, oh yes, but hey it was New Year's Eve and 2010 was pretty damn good to me.

I wrapped up R, R & I with a bowling, dive bar, hot tub combo night followed by dodging a 5 a.m. indecent and unexpected
proposal by a falling over drunk acquaintance. No further details need to be divulged on that...

Many normal things also happened during my winter break as well such as family togetherness, movies, reading, sitting on my ass etc., but who the hell wants to hear about that?

However, leaving KC again after that long vaca was bittersweet just like it was in August. While I'm still conflicted with this whole leaving home thing, I realized how many ghosts I have in Kansas City — good, bad and indifferent — so it's probably good for me to be away for a while living out a little piece of my dreams.

Just as I was transforming from a drunken college student back into a good time business gal to prepare for semester number 2 when I got back to Denver, something shook me out of my relaxed-and-ready-to-start-school-again state. I learned that there was some kind of glitch in the financial aid office and my loans that pay for my tuition, books and a portion of my living expenses were going to be two weeks late. All plans to purchase anything came to a screeching halt. I had budgeted pretty well, stretching last semester's funds into the new year until I was scheduled to receive my next round of aid, however I did not factor in a two fucking week delay. Nobody does...which makes me wonder how others on F.A. who do not have parents to help them, like mine, are eating right now...no joke. My sad, depleted bank account made an old fear that I had buried deep in the back of my brain resurface — debt, evil debt.

It really is the biggest bitch in the world. With student loans, you're damned if you don't (the situation I'm in now) and you're damned if you do (the situation I'll be in, but am already worrying about, in a year and a half). Despite constantly struggling, I've managed to avoid credit cards, the urge to keep up with the Joneses and overdraft fees for many years now. Everybody I know has debt except for me — until now, that is. I'm suddenly relying on shitloads of borrowed money and it's kind of making me psychotic...more so than usual.

We rack up this kind of debt on this kind of education because it most likely guarantees to land you a job that will allow you to pay it back before you're 75 and without having to live in a box while doing so, right? RIGHT?! Of course that guarantee would be a lot more solid if I didn't have to actually like my job and have a career that makes a difference. DAMN! Curse me for not simply being a money grubbing whore...

What if all those rain dances I've been doing to make 2012 have the most prosperous job market ever in history don't work? Shit! I was really counting on those.

So many others have done it before me, so I know it can be done, however I fear that I will be really bad at it. Somebody please teach me how to be in debt...preferably before my head explodes.
 

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