ardent bullshit comes down every faultline gushing heavily into jest kindly luscious melons nodding openly post quakes resting still to undermind various wonderous xylophones yawning zealously

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

The Jungle was fun. There was a little frog in my bathroom, a coqui, that hopped around all over and made his little frog noises. I showered staring at the ocean (the showers were all outdoor). I rode a horse on the beach. And snorkeled with unreal looking fish and sea turtles. I drove a Jeep around, listening to pop and classical music. And ran miles down a pier, staring at the mountains on larger PR. And I ate quite a bit of very good food.

While there my boss forwarded me an article in The Chicago Tribune about the work we are doing and I felt a sense of pride that all of the hours and back and forth and everything is beginning to bud into real progress that we can share with the public.

The dissertation I am turning into a paper and my own MA thesis proposal got hammered out on the trip and shortly thereafter, as well. I also read Night of the Gun by David Carr and was haunted by my own past and appreciative of his honesty and gratitude.

Once I got back yoga training was completed. My stepfather was diagnosed with cancer. Completely treatable. The best of bad news but still bad news. And I visited a friend in a substance use rehab facility for Family Day, under the pretense of research. And in the afternoon, sitting, holding his hand, that it hit me that it wasn't for any research. I was there to support and because that is what I want to do for this person. And what my role is for many others. It is somewhat of a default (because I don't quite trust my own emotions and some of my reactions) to get heady, internalize, and come up with some super academic solution. That's okay. And useful. In some ways but maybe not so much in others.

This is challenging for me and always has been. Especially with family. Good thing I am getting a lot of practice. Sometimes I still just want to run away and hide under all of my books.

Thursday, March 17, 2016

That Last Push

Winter is awful. March is terrible. These are facts. A couple weeks ago I was cranky and annoyed and just run down. To be fair, the addition of yoga training on the weekends shrinks my free time down to almost nothing. But it is almost over. A couple more weekends and a couple more assignments to clean up and I am done.

For now.

To escape what I can only describe as blah I am headed back down to Puerto Rico for about a week to write papers on a beach and ride a horse. Earlier today I picked up The Night of the Gun and Wittgenstein's Mistress. A few months ago I said I would not buy any new books until I finished the ones I already have. I am a fucking liar.

These lies are so good, though. Because I have tricked myself into forgetting. (this is a thing, you know, I learned about it in cog psych like 2 weeks ago, you can teach someone how to forget something on purpose...I have taught myself how to forget to not buy more books on purpose)

So off I go to some place in the jungle all by myself to do who knows what but read and get tan. Earlier tonight I was talking with a friend and said "well maybe I will get lonely or bored". He laughed.

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Hot cereal

These days cream of wheat or oatmeal and reading is the name of the game. It's a nice game. A pretty quiet game. Other than when I leave my home, which is anything but quiet.

Yesterday I had coffee with my old friend, Geoffrey. He said he was happy to see that I hadn't drastically changed since moving to Manhattan. That happens to some people, I suppose. I do walk more quickly. And live quite efficiently in many regards. This regard does not carry over to when taken into context food and Barney's trips. My demons still live in pleasure centers.

So I was in Mexico City (DF) for a few days, walking around, looking at art. It is quite challenging getting around without internet in a country that (hesitantly at best) speaks to you in English. I feel so spoiled now by the google maps and instagrams, telling me where to go and what to eat. Also, photos of cats that are not mine.

DF was great. And somewhat reminiscent of Glasgow in that it felt like such a working city. Very sunny and airy. Jogs through the bosque conjured up some pretty strong feelings of the fact that it is a city built on top of a city full of a warring culture. Interesting. So I kept on jogging, and stopping to look at stuff and then jogging along.

Next month I am back in Puerto Rico because winter is terrible and I can count on seeing the sunshine minimally for the next couple months. How is this healthy for us? Shouldn't we just be sleeping the whole time? How did I ever live through all of winter without going somewhere sunny in the middle?

Which brings me back to the original thought of hot cereal and reading. And the nap I am about to take.

Tuesday, January 05, 2016

Resolutions

With "the holidays" behind us and the East Coast finally receiving some typical winter weather, I'm taking full advantage of no classes and Hulu/Netflix. The Mindy Project, Happy Endings, re-watching Gossip Girl...between tv, the cats, and delivery, I'm finding little reason to leave my apartment. It's nice for a couple days. Running, working, and snuggling in.  But soon this would get really old.

What a bizarre feeling living on lower Manhattan and not really being around people. There are people everywhere! Yet, I have successfully avoided having a conversation longer than 3 minutes with someone in person since Sunday evening. Sometimes I just need a break.

First semester of the MA program is completed and I feel pretty confident about it all. I'm beginning training as a counselor next semester and hashing out plans for a small research project. I've gotten a chance to edit a colleague's dissertation chapters...which I love doing. Participating as an editor at the school psychology bulletin. Now that I take a step back, I realize just how many great opportunities I've had in such a short time. How much I've done in the past few months.

Even working from afar is positive and busy. We signed a large contract with industry, which affords me another couple years of job security. The grant is turning from a huge project into an enormous project.

Earlier today a friend asked about selling out. I wrote back some long goofy, inflated email about illusions or something. But it did kind of put a bug in my ear. At this point I feel like in some sense (other than a very few) we have sold out. I'm reading an autobiography about a swami right now. He has not sold out. But I certainly know that I have. I've compromised my values for selfish motives. Some very clear at the time, some less so. But when I'm honest, almost all of my actions are somehow selfishly motivated. To get attention, to hear someone's voice, in search for security. The latter directly most of my actions. This inexhaustible search for security. Being honest with myself about it has made the search so much easier lately. Or rather ending the search. Knowing is half the battle, right?

Anyway, at the New Year's party I went to we talked a little about resolutions and what we do in the beginning of the year. It's been a long time since I made actual resolutions. A couple years ago I found resolutions I made for 1998 in an old diary. I was 18 at the time. A freshman at Colorado State University and in a lot of psychic pain. The resolutions were so linear, black and white, just a set up to fail. And they did. At the time I couldn't understand what a real resolution is or how to set reasonable goals. Pretty sure that is typical 18 year old behavior.

A couple years ago I made a new soup every week. Last year took a trip at least once a month. This year I'm running. A couple half marathons in the spring and a the full NYC marathon in the fall. We'll see how it goes. On Saturday morning I put on the Kamasi Washington album, Epic, from last year, and ran 10 miles, over the Williamsburg Bridge, up through Brooklyn, peaking into Queens, over the Queensboro Bridge, and down First Avenue. Both the music and jog set the stage for a wonderful calendar year.

Now rather than altering problem behavior, I make new goals for the 12 months ahead. If they need to be changed as I go along, then fine. But it is much more fruitful to strive for self esteem by taking esteemable action.

Here's to 2016.

Friday, November 27, 2015

Everything Midnight

I just ate a really good turkey meatball while listening to an Eating & Feeding Disorders lecture. Last night I took myself out on a date to Lafayette for their Thanksgiving prix fixe, spending three hours grazing, reading Man's Search for Meaning. I feel a whole lot of contradiction in my life right now.

But not.

Instead of napping and taking it easy, I'm trying to get a bunch of work done before heading out for the night. Because this morning I had nothing to do tonight (no complaints) and now have plans. Glorious, wholesome plans.

Payton and I are going to a midnight screening of Casablanca at The Sunshine. Life is just so good. The cats and I are very happy on Manhattan. For a couple months it was a little lonely but that quickly lifted after school started. I love my classes this semester and have made a home for myself in a lab.

In about a month I begin yoga teacher training (eye roll) and have started to very slowly train for next year's NYC marathon in November (double eye roll).

Some days I miss Brookline a lot. Miss seeing people I know on the street. But that happens here, too. Not as frequently, but it happens. But most things are the same here as they were there, except here I can get a lot more delicious food at later hours. This makes me very happy.

Physics John got married last weekend and it was just beautiful. Being with old friends, laughing, dancing, smiling, sharing our adventures over the past years. And bringing a new friend into our group.

It's good to be here.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

(extra)Ordinary People

For as long as I can remember I have met certain people and it was like boom you are going to know one another on some level as long as you exist and then we do. These experiences and the people who come along with them are my most treasured gifts. Some friends are older and some are newer. All are unique and brilliant people; my eyes widen and whole being lightens around them.

About a month or so ago I met Zach at a party, and we immediately gravitated toward one another. And through him I met Payton. The apprehension of transitioning into an enormous city, honestly somewhat scared of "getting lost", melted when I met these two guys. It's like we've known one another our whole lives. We go to the movies and laugh and spend time walking around, running over NYC bridges, and just generally enjoying each another's company. We send one another messages at the same time, as if by some shared internal alarm. It is so comforting feeling a part of.

Switching gears.

Tonight during my swim the sky looked simply brilliant. Strong, linear sun rays peeking out of marshmallow clouds, smaller cotton candy clouds seemingly standing still in a blue sky. How the light reflected of the little ripples in the pool. Getting all wrapped up in life stuff and the narrative that writes itself in my mind, is essentially just being human. Witnessing such raw beauty in specific, calm moments, though, reminds me that there is so much depth in our existence.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Pull, kick, breathe.

There is an outdoor, public pool about a block from my apartment. It is an old pool, with a pool house (or at least the large stone structure was at one point; for what it is used now, I have no clue) on the west end of the pools. During the days the pool is open to kids and adults and whoever just wants to cool off. At 7 o'clock on the weeknights the parks department limits pool-goers to adult lap swimming. The lanes run east/west. Tonight I swam freestyle lengths going eastward and breaststroke lengths going westward for about 40 minutes and watched as the sun set behind the building.

Precious Moments.

Having not yet joined a gym here, exercise has mainly consisted of outdoor running, dance classes, and now swimming. I could go on like this forever but weather will not allow it and I do like access to a steam room and sauna in the winter. It'd been a few years since consistently swimming (about 6 to be precise) for exercise and I am happy to say that it's just like riding a bike. But in a pool. With measured breathing.