Harry Potter and The Cursed Child, by J.K. Rowling, John Tiffany and Jack Thorne
Before I started reading, I had already heard lots of murmurs about how it reads like fanfiction… and I’d have to agree. The logic behind timeflow isn’t consistent with Rowling’s original series at all, and all the characters were surprisingly flat (but maybe that’s because it was meant to be performed instead of just read).
I do have to say that Scorpius is just the gosh-darn cutest thing and reading any of the passages with him in it just made my day.
My Fight/ Your Fight, by Ronda Rousey and Maria Burns Ortiz
You can tell that Rousey treats life like a long extended fight. There is always adversity to overcome, an enemy to defeat, an authority figure to prove wrong. Whenever she’s not crying, she’s pissed. Like the promo videos before her Octagon fights, it was entertaining, but unlike those videos, it wasn’t especially inspiring.
Before I Fall, by Lauren Oliver
I’ve instagrammed more than one quote from this book, so I’m clearly in love with it. I’m just a sucker for those “no regrets” and “stop and smell the roses” types of stories. It also appeals to the YA book monster living inside me.
I found out after finishing it that this is getting made into a movie (coming out 2017)! The book reminded me of Anna Akana and RWJ’s Riley Rewind, so I wonder if the movie will be like it as well (except extended, of course). Riley Rewind was awesome, so I hope it is.
In other news, I created a Wattpad account! Hopefully some short stories will be up soon.
I was initially hoping to post a much longer entry much later, but unfortunately my self-experiment was very short-lived and so this is all there is to say.
How I discovered it
I heard about polyphasic sleeping the same way that I hear about most things – a Buzzfeed video. I then went down a dark tunnel of internet research.
What it is
For those of you who don’t know what polyphasic sleeping is, here is a quick run-down:
Most Western people are fixated on the adage that it is optimal to get 8 hours of sleep a day in one block of time. Polyphasic sleeping is spreading out your sleep into several smaller chunks of time, and ultimately decreasing your total sleep time by making yourself sleep more efficiently. Here are a few of the most common types of polyphasic sleeping:
The cons of polyphasic sleeping overwhelmed the pros. I’ve heard stories of a classmate’s brother who tried the Uberman schedule. He ended up getting constant nosebleeds and eventually had to go to the hospital. I wasn’t willing to mess myself up this much to satisfy a little curiosity. In addition, through my masterful internet research process, I wasn’t able to unearth many people who were able to 1) sustain polyphasic sleeping for more than a few months and 2) do so without side effects, such as abnormal weight gain. All the hype about polyphasic sleeping was mostly from people who were just starting it. There seemed to be no scientific evidence supporting it at all. Most website claimed that there were famous people who slept polyphasically like Leonardo Da Vinci, Thomas Edison and Nikolas Tesla, but the thing was that none of these famous people were still alive for me to judge whether they were living a happy and healthy lifestyle or not.
In the end, I decided I didn’t want to risk messing my body up just to satisfy a little curiosity.
In the Buzzfeed video, the doctor mentioned how many cultures do biphasic sleeping and how our bodies are actually wired to do so. Their definition of biphasic sleeping was going for 6 hours and then taking a 20 minute nap sometime throughout the day. Unfortunately, I couldn’t find a way to make this habit conducive to my lifestyle, as I would most likely be having a 9-5 day and then be doing something afterwards. It would be too difficult to set aside a time every day to have that 20-minute nap.
Our natural sleep cycle
While doing research on biphasic sleeping, I noticed another sleep cycle that was less talked about but had more scientific backing. It was another form of biphasic sleeping, but involved sleeping for four hours at a time, waking up for one to two hours, and then sleeping again for another four hours. So you were essentially still getting that required 8 hours of sleep, just in two blocks instead of one. There were two main reasons behind this way of sleeping:
This is our natural sleep cycle. According to many articles, this specific type of biphasic sleeping was what all humans did before the invention of the lightbulb. When there wasn’t any artificial light, the days were shorter, and so people went to sleep earlier. There were historical references to “two sleeps” in old literature, which is how we discovered this historical phenomenon. In addition, when psychiatrist Thomas Wehr did an experiment where he shut people in darkness for 14 hours a day (how long natural darkness is). After people had paid off their sleep debt (the combined hours of missed sleep we have wracked up over the years), they started to go back to this historical sleep pattern.
Better sleep quality. Throughout the night, we’ll go through several cycles of sleep. At around four hours, this is when we enter into one of the lightest sleeps, which makes it very easy to wake up. I have actually noticed that I will wake up in the middle of the night sometimes, something which through my internet research I’ve realized is quite common. Instead of sitting in the darkness waiting to fall back asleep, it seems more sensible to get up and do something with this twilight time.
Boosts creativity. People who do sleep in four-hour blocks like this have commented that they are able to be the most creative in the middle of the night during those few hours. Whether this is because there are no distractions from the outside world (duh, everyone else is sleeping) or just because of the mental state our brain is in after having a few full cycles of sleep is unknown, but who doesn’t want to be more creative?
My experience with biphasic sleeping
After reading so much about it, I was really excited to try biphasic sleeping myself. I always want to be more creative and efficient when doing my work, and I really dug the whole “our natural rhythm” aspect. Also, I had found myself waking up in the middle of the night a lot lately, so I figured it would not be too much of a stretch to actually get up and do something with my time.
Before biphasic sleeping, my bedtime ritual was this. I always tried to get 8 hours of sleep, and I liked to give myself half an hour to fall asleep, so I would budget 8.5 hours in bed. I liked to turn off all electronics about an hour before I got into bed in order to prepare myself for sleep, and take the hour to wash my face, brush my teeth, settle into PJs, and read a book. Sometimes if there were menial tasks around the house that didn’t require electronics like ironing clothes, I would fit that into the hour too. So my schedule looked something like this:
10:00 pm all electronics off, prep for bed
11:00 pm sleep
7:30 am wake up
For my experiment, I decided that I would do four hours (or 4.5 including getting-to-sleep time) with a one-hour gap and then another four hours. The reason I decided against anything more than an hour was because I had to wake up at the same time the next day, and adding more hours meant that I would have to sleep even earlier. I figured that I could start out with one hour, and if necessary slowly increase it.
My modified schedule looked like this:
9:30 pm all electronics off, prep for bed
10:00 pm sleep
2:30 am wake up
3:30 am back to sleep
7:30 am wake up for real
For the hour gap I was awake I also steered away from electronics in order to make sure that I would be able to fall asleep immediately afterwards.
In conjunction with this biphasic sleeping experiment, I also decided to employ the help of an app I had discovered and thought was helpful: Sleep Cycle. It tracks your sleeping throughout the night in order to wake you up at the optimal time (when you are in a light sleep stage) so you can wake up feeling restful instead of cranky.
It was surprisingly easy to get up in the middle of the night – I wasn’t fighting to open my eyes. In fact, it was easier waking up the first time than the second time, which might have been an issue since the second time waking up was when I had to actually pull myself out of bed for work.
The first night, I wasn’t sure how my brain would be feeling, so I just scheduled reading. The next night I tried some light physical activity like folding laundry, and the night after I tried to do some creative writing. My brain felt really clear during that hour, but it was almost like that clearness you get when you’ve had to get up at 3am to go to the airport. I can’t say that I feel any enhanced creativity. I was a lot more calm than I usually am, but I also felt as if I was working more slowly. There was definitely no bursts of divine inspiration that I’d read about, which is a little disappointing.
During the day, I was fine. I never experienced that “jetlag” feeling that polyphasic sleepers they say they have to go through. I’d attribute that to the fact that what I was doing was the natural rhythm of my body, instead of artificially introducing a new circadian clock into my system.
What I really loved about having that hour in the middle of the night was that I never felt pressured to get anything done. Before this experiment, I’d had the “restful hour” before my sleep time in order to get ready for bed, but too often I would have to interrupt this time because there was some task that was just urgent enough for me to spent an extra ten minutes doing it. That ten minutes would sometimes stretch into the full hour, and I’d just have time to do a quick wipe of my face before heading off to bed. When that restful hour is in the middle of your two sleep blocks, there is no longer that lazy “getting-ready-for-bed” attitude that can seep into your alone time. I was free to do whatever I wanted that was just for me. Hell, I was so calm that I could meditate for an hour if I wanted to – something I would never be able to do an hour before bed.
Why I stopped
While my new sleep schedule was a pretty interesting experience, a week in I was already noticing the one glaring problem:
I couldn’t get myself out of bed.
And it wasn’t because I was tired – it was because I was just too lazy. My mind was awake, but my body just felt so warm in its cozy cocoon. I didn’t want to fall asleep, but I also didn’t want to flip open the covers and start being productive either. The last night before I gave up the experiment, I just lay in bed for the full hour, staring at the ceiling and trying to will myself to sit upright. I realized that while I might be able to do work, the fact that I didn’t have the motivation to get up would suck that hour right from my schedule. I might as well have been sleeping for 9.5 hours instead of 8.5 then.
Even though I’ve stopped sleeping in two blocks of time, I’ve kept up my use of the Sleep Cycle alarm to wake me up in the mornings. It’s super nice to wake up in a good mood, and also be able to flip through all the stats from your last night’s sleep to see what went on. I find it super satisfying to see how many times I hit the deep sleep stage, almost as if it’s an achievement.
What I learned from this experience?
“There is a time for many words, and there is also a time for sleep.” -Homer
So this isn’t going to be an actual book review because I know I’m late to the party. The book was published more than a decade ago, and even the movie came out 3 years ago.
To be honest, Life of Pi was never something I was curious to read. I hadn’t heard of the book until the movie came out, and the trailer didn’t exactly get me too excited:
I remember thinking, “Why would I want to read or watch something that’s literally about a guy being on a boat the entire time? No thanks, I’ve already been through 127 Hours once.”
But it was always in my face. I remember attending a Key Club event where one guest announced he was celebrating his nephew’s success as a musical producer for the movie. When it won a Golden Globe, my university put it on our front page. Finally, when I saw it in the “Must Reads” section of the library, I figured I might as well give it a try.
Alice Kuipers wrote one of my favourite YA books, Life on the Refrigerator Door. It details the life of a mother and daughter who are struggling to communicate with each other while dealing with their respective problems, all through notes on the refrigerator door. It’s definitely 5/5 stars; cannot recommend it more!
OK, so the fact that Martel’s married to a literary genius aside…
He’s such a trickster.
Up until the very end of the book I was convinced this was a true story (or at least based on one – when I got to the carnivorous island part my faith had to let in a little doubt). Who starts off with a fictional note from the author?! I can’t say I don’t feel a little lied to and cheated… throughout the entire novel I was taking so much pride in Ontario and how we ended up becoming the home of someone with such an interesting past. *shakes fist helplessly* At least the story was interesting…
Unlike a lot of people I know, I don’t read an entire book in one sitting – I usually like to ration it out between a few nights. A result of this is that I have a lot of wild thoughts/predictions I will rant to friends about. One such friend suggested (not sure if it was because they actually thought it was a good idea or because they just got tired of listening to me… probably the latter) I write those thoughts down so I could revisit them later and laugh about how wrong I was (or marvel at my genius predictive abilities I suppose). I… did not do that.
Who wants to rant to a piece of paper/word document when they can always find a real life person who will (albeit sometimes reluctantly… apologies to my poor roommates) listen? But I did try to recall some of thoughts I had and write them down. Here they are:
I don’t understand how Piscine can follow three different religions at the same time. While there are many similarities, there are obviously glaring differences, or else there wouldn’t be conflict between the different religions all the time. How does he decide which side of the conflicts to believe? Does he just pick and choose particular tenets among the religions? How does he pick and choose… just based on his own morality? But isn’t the point of religion that our personal morality is flawed so we need to follow a higher code? I really wish the novel was more specific about this.
How in the world did the animals manage to escape their cages? Did someone let them out? Why didn’t they alert all the humans before that?
I can’t believe he has a wife. I wonder if his wife is familiar with all the things he did while on the boat. Is he back to being a vegetarian now? Does she ever doubt his integrity since he broke his diet? Does she ever think, “man deep down this guy is a hypocrite; whenever life gets tough he’ll abandon his peaceful ways”? (Although I guess the theory behind vegetarianism is that there are no reasons for us to eat meat because we’ve advanced to the stage where it’s possible for humans to survive without meat… once it became impossible for Piscine, he had to revert back to human’s primitive ways. Hmm, OK. Resolved.)
How did he deduce that the plants were carnivorous?! Just from finding teeth? My inference would’ve been that this tree just happened to grow teeth that looked remarkably similar to human teeth… (Sign #256 that I wouldn’t last two seconds in disaster scenarios)
I’m surprised Richard Parker didn’t completely maul him for leaving an island where there’s food and water. Is it only because he’s the Beta in this situation or because he’s also yearning for companionship? If we’re being real about this, when Richard Parker started those mating calls I was thinking he might end up raping one of the meerkats… glad the book didn’t get that kind of dark.
I’d be the first to say I complain way too much. Lately, I’ve been trying to stay thankful for more things, and one of them is definitely my program. I ever had to pick a degree again, business would still be #1.
ONE: the things you learn are applicable to real life.
Doing taxes? Creating a investment portfolio? Understanding what in the world is happening with your paycheck every payday? Unlike other unfortunate young adults, you aren’t expected to figure these things out on your own. Over break one of my friends taking science confessed that she still didn’t understand what a stock was. After I got over my initial shock, I realized that it just shows how this information that we take for granted is completely alien to others. How many times will your knowledge of the scientific name of a particular complex carbohydrate come in handy in regular walking-down-the-streets life? Probably -2. How many times will you be applying your knowledge of finance? Probably every month, when you’re moaning over your credit card statement.
TWO: let’s face it, we have the biggest job market
I have not heard of many business students who end up being unemployed. In contrast, there are so many people from other programs who end up not getting into the career path they wanted and who then… surprise… get a business degree to increase their job prospects!
THREE: you get to dress fancy… a lot.
I guess this could be a pro and a con, depending on your level of laziness. But business = professional, and professional = getting to justify buying a new outfit every time you go out. You can safely get that blouse knowing there will definitely be an occasion in the near future where you can put it on!
FOUR: all the above for way less work.
Every time a see an engineer’s schedule, I shudder and weep a little bit for them. As a business student, you’re expected to spend a lot of your time socializing and networking instead of just studying – all in the name of building up those “people skills” which are so important in your future career.
FIVE: you need way less school
How many years of school does it take to become a doctor? 11+. What about a lawyer? 7-8. Pharmacist? Again, 8. Accountant? 4 years. The numbers don’t lie. (Although if you take business you know you can find a way to make them skirt the edge of lying…)
SIX: and if you’re the type that likes school… go ahead
Even if you end up deciding that one of the traditional business career paths isn’t for you, your degree will still be applicable to literally anything you want to try next. Like it or not, the world is being run by businesses, so if you want to run the world, speaking the business language is an important first step.
Looking back on why I chose this program in the first place, I can see that I already knew almost all of these reasons (except #4 – that was an added bonus). These are some pretty well-known nuggets of knowledge, but a lot of people looking in from the outside assume that at the end of posts like these there’s going to be some “but”. There actually isn’t. A business degree is pretty awesome, and I definitely don’t regret putting myself in the path of getting one.
I usually like to end these things with some pretty picture that can relate to the post but can also break up the wall of text which is this blog. Since business pictures are pretty boring, and National Ice Cream Day just passed (I ate way too much omg), I found one of three ice cream cones instead. You’re welcome.
I feel like my time management skills this term have improved a lot more. Or maybe it’s because coop slapped my sleeping schedule firmly into place, so I wake up at a decent hour now. I finally started reading again. Our school’s library has a neat little section of novels chosen by library staff. Last week, I picked one out for the first time. I was in a hurry so didn’t get the chance to go through many books, but this was the one I ended up going home with:
When everything feels like the movies, by Raziel Reid
Here’s a picture of the jacket summary:
Pretty cryptic, huh? You can’t tell from this that what it means is that Jude is flamboyantly gay.
Jude’s pov is very interesting. If I could put a concrete feeling into these words it’d be like a Marilyn Monroe documentary – a little wistful, a little ironic, and very delusional. There were several times where I screamed out loud and pleaded with the page not to go where I knew it was going (my poor roommates thought I’d seen a bug, which, admittedly, does arouse the same reaction). But nothing could have prepared me for those last few pages, where the story comes completely off its hinges.
This book was awesome. I need to look at recommended books more often instead of just sticking to the niche of ones I like. As an added bonus, I now cannot walk around without seeing everyone as an actor on set.
An incident happened two weeks ago that bothered me for a while, and I just got reminded about it again today. Even though this experience was small, it made me very introspective.
Context: we were celebrating my friend’s birthday and had booked out our student housing’s theatre for the night. We were in the middle of the movie when three guys came in and said that they had booked out the theatre. What was going on?
I’ll spare you the (un)pleasantries and get to the point. Through a long conversation, it turned out that this is what happened: our student housing website had been under renovation for a while. During this time, they had shut down the function on the website where you could book various amenities in the building. Instead, the front desk had a sign-up sheet where you could sign up for permissions to use the amenities. The afternoon of, we had gone to the front desk to sign up. It looked like the theatre was free so we were able to book it. However, it turned out that at some point the website’s sign-up function had been unblocked and you could now book rooms through there as well. The housing company simply hadn’t communicated this fact to the front desk, so both sign-up methods were still operating, which caused a double-booking this particular night.
No one was willing to give up the theatre. From our end, we were in the middle of the movie and were celebrating our friend’s birthday. From their end, the guy who lived in the building had invited his two friends over. This kind of incident had already occurred to him once, and he didn’t want to lose face in front of his friends again. The front desk was closed so there was no one to mediate the discussion. We thought it was reasonable for us to finish the movie first, because we had gotten to the theatre first. They thought it was reasonable to let them finish using the theatre and for us to come back because they weren’t convinced that we had booked the theatre in the first place.
The conversation became very heated and threats started to be thrown around. Both sides were threatening to call the police. One of my friends actually burst into tears, so we let them take the theatre and left. Everyone was in a pretty sour mood afterwards.
I don’t think any of us really cared about giving the theatre up for them. We had a pretty big TV in our living room that we could use to finish the movie. It’s more about the perceived unfairness of the situation that irked everyone. (Imagine a small child shrieking “but… but that’s not FAAAAAAIR!” and you’d be perfectly visualizing what several young adults were doing in that theatre.) If we had signed up to use the space, how was it fair for us to give it up? I kept thinking back to who was right – there doesn’t seem to be a right answer. If we had to put blame on anybody, this mix-up was the housing company’s fault. But could we have handled the situation any better? I don’t have an answer.
For my part, I’m just glad no fights broke out. Towards the end, I was seriously concerned that fists were going to be thrown. And as empowering as vocalizing your rights is, getting someone’s nose broken would not have been a good ending for anybody.
I’m pretty sure the world is divided into two sets of people: people who say this and people who hate the people who say this. Unfortunately for me, I fall into the former category. If you belong to the latter, when someone says “I’m so not ready for _____”, simply allow it to translate to “I’m so nervous” in your mind. Not all of us have the confidence to say “I will ace this thing!” in response to that “Are you ready?” question… especially if there’s even a 1% chance we could fail.
2. “You’re still young”
You hear this saying a lot from those of the older generation in relation to life’s milestones. Usually it’s after you’ve given an unsatisfactory answer to one of their probing questions. Unfortunately, when they say “you’re still young”, what they mean is “you’re not young anymore… you should really get your shit together.” And it’s only a matter of time before they start telling you that.
3. “Just kidding!”
Because the best jokes need to be suffixed with “just so you know, this was a joke. Laugh please.” Situations where “just kidding” is used are usually situations where at least a small glimmer of truth was in what was just said, but the voice-er doesn’t want to offend you. Or they do, but they don’t want to be caught by others doing it.
4. “Let’s keep in touch”
How many times have we said this with absolutely no intention of keeping in touch with that person? “Let’s keep in touch” has become the polite way of saying “you’re slightly interesting, but not enough for me to expend effort in building a relationship with” or “you’re not interesting at all. Let me politely get you to leave.” At least there’s a socially acceptable way to dismiss people from your life.
5. “No rush” / “Take your time”
Nothing rushes me more than when someone says “take your time”, because they just reminded me that I am taking up their time in waiting on me. I feel like I was daydreaming while paying for my items at the grocery store, and someone just tapped me on the shoulder and showed me that there was a line full of people behind me. I’ve caught myself being on the giving end of such a line – and if the person then takes more than a few days in getting the item to me, I get legitimately pissed off. I’m trying to get into a better habit of giving others a legitimate timeline instead of simply “no rush” or “take your time” – “could you get this back to me within a week?” means practically the same thing and doesn’t take a dictionary that doesn’t exist to translate.
Blogging 101 Day 4: publish a post you’d like your ideal audience member to read, and include a new-to-you element in it
Dear Future Me,
How’s… whatever you’re up to? Hope you have time for a quick chat. Actually, even if you don’t have time, buckle down sister, you’re going to have to read through this now that you’ve seen it.
What ARE you up to? Are you still doing audit, or are you pursuing some other profession now? Wherever you are, I hope you’ve remembered not to let work take over your entire life. You’re someone that gets easily obsessed, but make sure you’re staying obsessed over the right, healthy things. If you ever lose your way, just remember this: corporations aren’t people.
Are you still reading books? Your brother just started on the Harry Potter and Divergent series. How is your brother? Is he still swimming?
Are you still doing Blogilates? Right now, you’re obsessed with her. You’re even considering becoming certified. Did that end up happening, or have you found some other form of fitness?
What are your current celebrity obsessions? Are Emily Blunt and John Krasinski still together? You’ve been obsessively watching their interviews for about a week now, and they still seem like the most adorable couple ever. I hope they’re still together by the time you’re reading this… don’t tell me if they’ve broken up (although I guess you can’t).
There are some things you’ve realized about yourself lately, and I thought I’d remind you about them in case you forget again:
Think before you speak. Remember that app, Episode, that you were so engrossed in you had to delete it after a month because it was taking over your life? You always put so much thought into every decision you made… you should be doing that in real life too. Think about the consequences of every action you make, everything you say… and for the love of god, stop pushing people away by telling them the worst things about yourself just because you’re afraid. You do not need to “initiate” every friend by revealing a bundle of crazy – if they need to know, they’ll find out at the right time.
It’s OK to be comfortable and not want to change. Being static is not a bad thing – when you feel yourself stalling, it’s not a sign to surge forward to fulfill people’s unmet expectations. I don’t know about you reading this now, but as I’m writing this, you still find yourself evaluating yourself after every single meeting, even if it’s just a gathering of friends. Stop it. You don’t need to be the “bubbly” friend, or the “mature” friend -being yourself is good enough. (Even if it isn’t, no one will tell you, and you can rest easy in blissful oblivion.)
Wherever you are, whatever you’re doing, I hope you’re doing well. Stay strong, stay positive, stay happy. Muah.
Before we begin: I’m currently taking part in Blogging 101. All my posts related to that course will be tagged blogging101. For those of you who are also into blogging, I encourage you to join me and the rest of the community of bloggers!
The topic of our assignment today was to write a “who I am and why I’m here” post. I figured that since this blog is only the latest of many I’ve taken a stab at, that I would start by explaining my relationship with blogging instead.
I started blogging in elementary school. I was really into creative writing back then, and started a website where I wanted to showcase my writing and other people’s writing as well. For some reason, I thought that if I created a webpage, people would find it, submit their stories to me and I could publish it on my website, and thereby build a community. I had no recognition of how hard it was to even have people find your blog back then. After a few weeks of very few views, I gave up on that venture. (I tried to find a link for you guys, but I forget the name of the site so… sorry).
I then started my first real blog. I posted in this one throughout most of high school. Since I was also writing book reviews for an online company during that time, I also wrote reviews of other books I read on my blog. My teenage self also constantly swivelled between dry sarcasm and major angst, so I also had wrote some “opinion” pieces. Reading them now makes me laugh and cringe simultaneously.
I switched to this blog mostly because I disliked Blogger. My poor blog underwent several major renovations (these were usually done during one of my moody fits and were reflective of those moods – I’ve had a pink blog with fluffy clouds and I ended with a theme reminiscent of a geeky tech blog from the 90s), but they never met my satisfaction for more than a few days. I would look at other blogs for inspiration, and the ones I enjoyed the most were almost always WordPress. One of my favourite bloggers at the time was Singaporean Xiaxue (I even wrote a post about her), and she had talked about wanting to switch over to WordPress (something she never ended up doing for some reason).
So now I’m here. Compared to my other blogs, this one lacks focus, which kind of parallels my life these days. I haven’t had time to read as many books as I used to (< one per term even), so I can’t possibly write any book reviews, and without the inspiration of other writers to draw from, I felt like writing anything was pointless because my technique would stagnate in a pool without flowing influences. Once I stopped for a little while, it was easy to stop entirely.
Why am I trying to revive this stuttering blog? Well, I’ve been reading more blogs lately, and it’s inspired me to give this thing another shot. Whenever I find one of my diaries from back when I was a child, I always get a good laugh.
How is this different from a diary? I don’t keep a diary anymore. In case you haven’t gleaned from some of my entries on this blog or my old one, I can become quite emo given the right conditions. When I’m writing entries just for me, my thoughts turn dark very quickly, whereas when I’m writing on the Internet, the caution of a stranger / someone I know reading this helps keep me in check. It’s my own twisted way of self-protection, I guess.
What topics will I write about? Probably pop culture, university life, and possibly coop? I also want to write more short stories.
What will I hope to accomplish within the next year? I won’t be optimistic in thinking I’ll be able to dedicate to this blog the time that it needs. Hopefully I will at least be able to maintain my goal of one post a month.
As the new year hits, I’m realizing that I’ll be 20 soon. Where did all the time go? It feels like yesterday that I was on a grade 6 band trip, wearing my first ever pair of heels and dancing on the bus with my fellow gap-toothed classmates, my flute forgotten in the corner. Do I even know how to play the flute anymore?
Now that I’m almost 20, my family’s perception of my perpetually single status has changed dramatically. In high school, any mention of a boy would receive eyebrow raised and a slight frown. Now, not a phone call home goes by without casual questions about if there are any guys that have “caught my eye”. I feel like a can of food they suddenly found expiring on a back shelf and are now determined to do something with. It doesn’t help that my Mom is also fond of using the “girls have an expiration date” analogy. She seems pretty adamant that my choices are to either find a boyfriend immediately or be an old maid forever.
Almost 20 year-old me has started worrying about other things too. Are the people I’m surrounding myself with now going to be lifelong friends who will end up having a profound impact on my life? Will I ever learn to cook properly? Shouldn’t I have most of this figured out by now?
I’m glad I at least picked a career path with immediate job prospects. Seeing my friends struggling over medical and law school prep is a constant reminder that the path I chose was definitely not the most difficult. It eases my mind knowing I’ll have a solid job to fall back on no matter what. One part of my life that’s neat and orderly. Now to just clean up the gazillion other pieces.
In 6 months and 20 days I will officially have left my teenage years behind. If two decades passed by this fast, how long will it be before I reach 30? 40? What will my life be like then? I feel as if so far, I’ve played a mostly passive role in my own life… I’ve waited around for others to act, and just rolled with the punches. I went to the schools my parents suggested, took the tests they wanted me to take, led the clubs others thought I should lead, applied to jobs everyone thought I should want. So far it’s turned out all right, but what happens when there’s no longer anyone to make the decision for me? I can see it happening already – my parents are slowly backing away from major decisions (except to firmly tell me there’s no way I could ever make it in investment banking… thanks for the vote of confidence Dad), my classmates are all going down unique paths that would be impossible to emulate, my friends can no longer answer my increasingly desperate questions with simple binary answers. At some point I have to turn from someone that’s been learning to someone that’s providing the information. And that scares the shit out of me.