Saturday, February 28, 2009

Settling Down

Not sure what it is that has posessed me to do this, and hopefully James won't mind, but for whatever reason I feel the need to repost one of his writings from a few years back. Something I think that is worth reposting:

I’m at that age where a lot of the people that I know have either gotten married or are getting married. I look at some of the couples, and see how some of them will work, how some will fall apart (either amicably or explosively), and how some will feel obligated to stay with each other for the rest of their lives because they said “I do” for the wrong reasons. The funny thing is that people are starting to look at me and ask when I am going to do the same.

Are you seeing anyone? Is it serious (which always sounds like they’re discussing a disease that you are afflicted by. He has what? Is it serious?)? When are you going to settle down?

I take offense at this. The very notion of “settling down” annoys me.

Let’s think about this on a word by word basis.

First off, I don’t want to settle for anything relationship-wise. I want to be in a serious relationship because I feel passionately about the person. Saying I have settled is downright insulting both to myself and the person, if any, I choose to marry. It implies that I’ve chosen to spend my life with that person because I can’t do any better or that I can’t get what I want.

Settling is what you tell yourself that you’re doing when what you have isn’t really what you want; when what you have doesn’t make you happy but is somewhat tolerable.

I refuse to do that. I would rather spend my life alone or simply having short relationships rather than settling on something I don’t want for the rest of my life. I was very close to marrying someone I loved very much several years ago, and I can guarantee you that I wasn’t settling for anything.

The person I marry will be someone that I want to see when I first wake up in the morning and the last thing I see when I go to sleep. This isn’t to say that I want to spend every waking moment with that person, because I don’t. I enjoy my time alone, and I would hope that she would too.

I want to be with someone who stand with me and whom I can stand with. I don’t want to be with someone who uses me as a crutch in order to prop themselves up for whatever reason.

I want to be with someone who has opinions and a mind of her own; someone I find attractive not only physically but intellectually and in other manners that aren’t as easy to quantify.

If I ever meet anyone that makes me feel that passionately again, then we’ll talk about my getting married. Until then, I’m going to enjoy life for the sake of life; not for what other people think I should do.

Let’s face it: I’m 25. It’s been a long and interesting trip so far, but I have, in theory at any rate, many years ahead of me on the path that I walk. To spend them with someone that I don’t truly love is just wrong in my opinion, and it amazes and insults me that my family seems to think that I should find my identity in someone else.

Now, for the second part – down.

As if settling for something that you don’t want isn’t bad enough, settling down is worse. It says that you are not only willing to spend your life with someone you don’t really want to, but that you are willing to spend your life with someone so far below what you want that it’s not even funny.

That, to me, is one of the worst things I can think of doing not only to myself but to the other person as well. It’s insulting to think that I would be happy “settling down” or that the other person would be happy either considering that the way I felt would affect our relationship.

Let’s face it. Nobody else can make you happy. You have to be happy with yourself or you’ll never be happy at all. To look to a relationship for validation or happiness is just insulting to everyone involved.

Learn to love yourself first for both your accomplishments and your faults. Look at yourself realistically but also with a humble pride (for lack of a better word at the moment), knowing both what you see as positive and negative about yourself. Accept yourself for who you are. If there is something you don’t like about yourself, think about why it bothers you. If the reason it bothers you is good, then work on changing whatever it is that bothers you about yourself.

It’s not easy, but things which are worthwhile rarely are.

Once you get to that point, you probably won’t want to “settle down” either.

When I first read it, it was definitely a glimpse into the type of man I was starting to fall for... the man I now love more deeply than I knew possible. Even then, in what I suppose is typical girlish fashion, I was both intimidated by what I thought I had to live up to, and warmed by the prospect that if someday he ever did ask, that would mean I am all those things.

The world has changed so much in those 3 1/2 years or so... and in true fashion to how so much of my life has worked, much of the changes have come all at once, in little floods where suddenly everything's turned on its side and the view is completely different than before.

It's strange, reading it again now...

I'm not so intimidated anymore.

Then again, I think I've gotten a bit better at enjoying things for what they are, instead of obsessing over what they could be. Fussing over what wasn't happened yet. Not that I never think about the what-ifs, think of what could be, but everyone does that to a certain degree.


James was in town yesterday for programmery type stuff (yes, that is a technical term, thankyouverymuch lol), so I met him near Polaris and we spent some time out together for a bit. It was kind of nice to get *out* with him again for a change... usually lately we don't tend to have much time so it's spent hiding away in the house, watching movies and whatnot.

We opted for just wandering around the mall - he'd just spent a lot of drive time so didn't want to run around in the car again, and we only had a couple hours until he had to be at the MS building (which turned out to be right next to the mall so had we planned better we could have had a bit more time... oh well). We pulled into the parking lot, and sitting there was a limo.

Oh, but not just any limo.

This thing was, honest to god, Barbie pink with purple flowers all over it.

Turned out it belonged to one of the stores now attached to the mall... some sort of party spa thing for little girls (that age where they're still all obsessed with dressing like princesses and getting ponies for Christmas and the like). Which... kind of explained the pink but still, wow. lol

And I thought the pickup-truck limo I once saw was scary.

Later on we had a chance to spend the evening in - dinner wasn't fancy, just some of my leftovers (which, impressively, he survived - I'm no great shakes in the cooking department), kicked back and watched a movie...

He stayed until the next afternoon. Then after he left I ran over to my folks' house for movie night. One Hour Photo - not bad, though not as "omgthiswillscareyoutodeath" as people made it out to be. Then again, I'm interested in psychology, so "psychological thrillers" don't really get to me all that much, I guess. Criminal Minds I have to be careful about watching at certain times of the day, but I agree with my mom that it's more likely the combination of the psychological stuff and all the graphic gore and the like. Plus certain filming styles get to me more than others, I've noticed. The last I watched Criminal Minds, it was rather dark and grayed-out a lot of the time. It's interesting what color and light do to your psyche. One Hour Photo, on the other hand, was very pale and washed-out. Except for the photos. Intentional, I'm sure - the effect worked for the movie, but psychologically speaking, for someone like me that made it easier to watch without feeling the usual semi-panic of suspense.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Things I learned from the Karate Kid movies

1. An 80s high school is a very dangerous place. There are big gangs of karate-fighting bullies all over the place, and the school officials will just watch and not stop them from beating you up.

2. 80s high schools regularly employ paramilitary groups just to hunt down students and get them in trouble. Because, you know, a regular hall monitor is just a sissy.

3. There are no police in the 80s. Everything is street justice. Somebody tries to kill you? No cops, have to learn karate to stop them.

4. All elderly Japanese men sound like they have been chain smoking for like 90 years.

5. In Japan, people speak broken English to each other instead of Japanese, even when the flighty American kid isn't around to need to understand them.

6. If you choke some kid in public, everyone will just stare and not do anything about it. Because, you know, choking kids is perfectly legal in the 80s.

7. Underage drinking is okay as long as it's sake, not beer.

8. 80s high schools conveniently have bird cages on the roof in case you find some injured hawk you want to hide or something.

9. Mr Miyagi is the only karate teacher in the known universe who isn't an arrogant jerk.

10. Maintenance guys at seedy apartment buildings can afford really awesome housing. Also, apparently once they start teaching Karate for free they don't have to show up at work anymore.

11. Being a karate instructor is exactly like being a mob boss. You get your own posse who pushes everybody around so you can pretty much own whole towns.

12. Japanese thugs kick harder than American ones.

13. Rich guys have nothing better to do than get revenge on complete strangers.

14. Shop doors in California obviously do not lock. Otherwise how would Daniel be dumb enough to leave it wide open for the bad guys to get in multiple times?

15. No seriously, there were no cops at all in the 80s. Nor were there insurance companies, so if your stuff gets stolen, you're screwed.

16. I stand corrected. There are cops, but they laugh at you when a crime is committed instead of doing their jobs.

17. Nobody can hear your evil laughter if you do it behind a wall.

And of course, the most important of all:

Don't mess with the old guy. He can kick your butt.

Monday, February 09, 2009

Yay for dads

Over the years, my dad has been my car mechanic, my hvac tech, my general handyman, my carpet installer, my bad-weather chauffer, my "bad guy" when I had to give the cat pills, my GPS system when I got lost (5 times) on the way to and from Chillicothe to visit James, my personal shopper for the occasional car part (I've busted two mirrors in the last year - one because a rock flung at it out of a snowblower, the other because I had to choose between hitting some idiot edging over the yellow line into my lane and hitting a trash can - I chose the trash can)...
Today he was my locksmith. I no longer have to beat the bejeezus out of my door to get it to shut properly. Apparently the freeze and thaw finally took its toll and something shifted all wonky. But it's all fixed now, thanks to my dad, who is talented at all things handyman-related and mechanical. And electrical, for that matter - he wired the basement when they finished it off into office and guest room space.

That's admittedly something that's been nice about having the family right around the corner. I want to ove further away eventually, but right now, when I've needed their help, they've been there to help me out quite a bit. Dad especially, because I'm pretty much at a loss when it comes to fixing things. Yeah, okay, I can check my oil, refill my wiper fluid, tighten screws back, hang a picture on the wall, that sort of thing... oh and apparently some guys at Home Depot were impressed (or flirting with me, could go either way) for actually changing my own air filters for the furnace. But had I tried to fix that door myself it'd probably somehow manage to be off the hinges and laying on the porch by now...

Yeah. Many thanks to my dad. Fixer of all things.

Though thinking about it, my house would probably be about as secure with no locks... I have a good security system. It's called "nosy grandfather with a shotgun". lol We call it the "grandpa alarm". You're on my porch? He doesn't know you? Invited or not, you can bet he's gonna ask you what you're doing there. Reasons I had to make sure to introduce him to James. I could just imagine the reports of him having to chase off some guy who was hanging around my house if I hadn't.

Oh, the shotgun? Yeah pretty much every house around here has one. Coyotes and raccoons and all that. Yes, there's the occasional threat of rabies too. Doesn't come up often, but you need something around just in case. I think I've seen one rabid animal in my entire life. Freakiest thing I've ever seen... dad aimed a shot next to it to try and scare it off, dang thing didn't flinch. That was pretty much the final tipoff that there was something seriously wrong with it... first being that it was out in the middle of the day and WAY too close to the house.

And before you start in with all the hillbilly jokes, both sets of grandparents are originally from Appalachia. :P

Wow.... ramble..... I need to go find dinner.

Friday, February 06, 2009


Okay, some weatherman owes me an explanation.

It was supposed to be 40 today.

Why is the forecast now only set at 33, and the current temp at 20?

I was so hoping to make it outdoors today... maybe put in some volunteer hours at the humane society in the nice weather, which I haven't had energy to do in a while.

Looks like I'll be a shut-in for another day. says it's going to be almost 50 tomorrow. *glares threateningly* They'd better not be lying.

I am SO ready for spring.