Sunday, June 29, 2008

My blissful night!

Would you care to know why I am soooooo happy in this picture?? Why I look so gloriously at peace with myself and with the world . . . .well I'll tell you friends--I shall tell you!
Last night, the power went out from about 8:30pm until 2:30am. No power=no a/c. Sooo, we slept out on the deck last night!! We spread out blankies galore and slept under the stars! It was almost as great as camping! Only it wasn't! No bug bites, no driving! No packing! Just sleeping on the deck. Truly it was wonderful!
My roommate Sade enjoying Sunday morning after our night on the deck! Doesn't she look totally happy! It's because she slept outside. Becca, one of our other roommates was inbetween us right up until the lights came back on--then she went back in. Apparently, she wasn't as giddy about sleeping outside. So I didn't bother to take her picture. Oh well . . . . some people's children!

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Folk Life Festival

At the Folk Life Festival on the mall in DC, the two main exhibitions were from Texas and Bhutto. I ran out of batteries on my camera as I got to Texas, so this is my only picture of Texas. But I've been there, so we're good. This is a dance hall with live music. You have the people watching the "folk life" and people participating in the festivities by dancing. I really wish that I had gone with someone so I could dance--but I didn't even plan on going to the festival. I was ready to go to the gym, and I decided to hop on the metro and just go into town to see what was happening and as I emerged from the depths of the underground, I found myself at the Folklife Festival!
I tried to make it appear like I was taking a picture of the temple in the background, but really--I was giggling at these stalwart octogenarians. I hope I'm out and about attending Folklife festivals when I'm this old. Awesome.
This is the entrance into the Bhuttan Temple.
This is the inside of the temple. The monks sat playing the same music over and over again. I don't know if it's cooler in Bhutta than it is in DC, but they seemed absolutely miserable. I kept thinking about what I knew about Bhuddism--how they eliminate suffering by overcoming the self. You have two choices--to change your reality or change your view of reality--and Bhuddism teaches you to change your desires or your view of reality in order to eliminate the disparity and eliminate suffering. I expected to see happy monks. But these monks were not happy. They were suffering. So much for that theory. Maybe that's why they were playing music. I did appreciate that music and art filled the spiritual space. That made me happy. Even if it didn't make the monks happy.
This is a monk carving a statue from clay.
This is the outside of the Bhuttan Temple.

This is a Bhuttan Monk teaching little kids how to weave yarn. Now he was happy. And he didn't have any fans blowing on him.

A week in the life

I've spent the past week working on cutting the script for our upcoming production of A Midsummer Night's Dream. This will be the second time I've directed this play this year. I am kind of excited by this time round. I can't get my last Titania and Oberon out of my mind. The girl who played Titania was such a little miracle. I giggle every time I think about some of her choices.

I'm really excited by everyone who is in this cast.

On another topic--I went and saw Wall-E last night after teaching my Ethics class. I don't know what was better, the movie? The previews? ("Let it begin!" and "I'll go get my ball!") or the short at the beginning of the movie? Just go see it and let's call this post finito!

I need to go to Kinkos and bind the script.

But first, I've been watching Oprah this week. Truly, I love this woman. I think she gets more amazing with every passing year. After yesterday's episode, I've decided to live my life with more gratitude. I need to stop focusing on what I don't have and start appreciating all the little things I do have that make me and my life so freaking amazing!

And now I'm going to take my perfect body and drive my brilliant little beast of a car that roars like a lion and get this script copied and bound!

On another note--I think we're having a party at my house tonight. Not sure really. I guess I'll just show up!

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Performing at the June Bug

Sunday night, Spencer and I headed off to Floyd, VA--by way of Lesley's house--to perform for the people of Floyd. We had a great ride down to Lesley and Robert's house. We were supposed to be running lines for the upcoming performance, but we did a lot of talking and we're friends again. Which is good, because I don't know if you noticed--but I really missed him!! There are just some people that I need in my life, and despite his ability to drive me crazy, he brings light and sunshine into my life. (It's a corny metaphor, but it's true!)

We arrived at the house and Lesley was waiting up. The dear woman. She looked so cute in her perfect house that they just BOUGHT. I love it! It's huge!!

The next day, we began running lines and rehearsing scenes. The show consisted of a slew of great scenes and musical numbers. We also interspersed some monologues. The June bug Center was paying us to do a show that they could film and publish segments of on their website. The mood all day was relaxed, but the nerves were just under the surface. I didn't know how to convince them that I had chosen the specific scenes and monologues for a reason--and that things were going to be great.

Our accompanist was a dear--but she was NOT an accompanist. She kept trying to play all the notes and was slower than we needed her to be. That was frustrating, but I was so grateful to have her.

Dennis and Mary--the folks who run the theatre--were generous and lovely. The interns working at the theatre were sweet and worshipful, which makes one feel good about oneself. (adoration has such a lovely effect on the soul!)

So, we come to the performance--Spencer and I opened the show with "Anything you can do I can do better"--which had never quite gone well during the rehearsals that day. That night--we nailed it. As we got off stage, the previously skeptical Spencer said to me "that was amazing!"

Lesley followed that up with a number from Aykbourn's Round and Round the Garden which was phenomenal. And the show continued on like this for the next hour.

I found myself carried away in so many moments. I accidentally referred to Lucius Pella as Lucius Malfoy and had to stop the scene and go back--it's television, so I can do that! For the most part, I was carried away by awe at the amazing talents of Lesley and Spencer. I know we only had a day to rehearse--and really--not even that. BUT, most of the scenes and songs we did, we'd been rehearsing for years on our own. It was such a privilege to be able to see all that hardwork and passion come together for one evening.

They're making a fancy dvd of the event, so I should be able to post stuff from it some time in the next few months. Hopefully, I'll feel good about it after watching the dvd. We had two cameramen for the show! It was nervewracking. And we got to wear little tv mikes. I was afraid to make any noise off stage. But enough about it! It was good and fun and I'm very glad we did it.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Awkward Me

I've been talking with a new friend Abraham. Here's a list of Abraham's qualities: he's nice, good looking, he travels with his work to Africa and other exotic places, he appreciates great music and art, he enjoys sports, and he's a loyal friend. I met him because he is one of Spencer's good friends--so I know he's a good person to know.

This isn't a male or female thing, because I do the same thing when I meet an interesting new girl friend too--but whenever I meet someone who is interesting and cool--I automatically wish that I was cooler. I try to make myself seem more interesting than I am. I try to convince them to think that I'm cool too.

It's stupid because people who do this to me annoy the hell out of me, so I expect I must annoy the hell out of my cool new friends too.

I know I'm interesting and I've done cool things too--and I don't need to show people that. You are who you are and the good folks will stick around long enough to see the good in you. But he's really cool, and I really want to be his friend.

I am totally pathetic. Honestly, if Spencer didn't have to drive 9,000 miles with me this winter, he'd have never made it through this stupid phase of our friendship. I swear I am the most annoying thing in the world right now.

Ah well, hopefully I have enough self-knowledge to shut up about myself and just enjoy how lucky I am to get to know interesting and "cool" people. I have always been a little nerd. I will always be a little nerd, and the sooner I get used to it, the sooner I'll find peace.

I remember the first time I met Sister Tachini. I was wearing a lavender gingham dress. Yep. Gingham. I was tres chic. I swear. . . Now that I think about it, if my companions weren't forced to live with me and get past my insecure show off phase, I don't know that any of them would have thought much of me. My dear Sister Bush, how I must have tortured you.

I shall overcome and find love for myself--the kind of love that allows me to sit back and enjoy new people instead of torturing them by talking about myself incessantly in a bid to make them like me! I shall overcome!! I'm 30 for pete's sake!!

Friday, June 20, 2008

Freedom and Determinism; sharing my insanity

My friend Craig and I had a lengthy discussion about freedom vs. determinism last night.

Then today, we discussed the difference between freedom and determinism in class. Psychological egoists say that people act in their own self-interest. Ba da bing, ba da bang.

Ethical egoists say that people OUGHT to act in their own self-interest. The ought implies that we have a choice.

I am overwhelmed with the timeliness of this whole line of thought. Throughout this week, I have felt overwhelmed and overrun by circumstances outside of my control. And even in those circumstances, I've felt myself make right and wrong choices. I haven't felt like I was being guided towards certain choices. I felt myself freely choose to eat the cookie dough. I freely chose to sleep in until noon and I freely chose to leave a nasty voicemessage.

The idea that God somehow knew that I was going to self-destruct does not comfort me in the least bit. I like the idea that God knows that I will overcome my weaknesses, but the idea that God knows that I'm going to implode is horribly depressing. There's something more to all of this though. Something I'm missing. I think God is trying to teach me something, but I'm too selfish and destructive to get at the point.

But He's sure trying. I don't think it's a coincidence that during this week of hell and misery, I had a conversation about freedom and determinism with Craig last night--AND I had to teach about it today. Someone up there wants me to recognize an eternal truth. I'm just not getting it.

I feel a little more in control today. I truly have accomplished a long list of things this week, despite my own personal misery. I went to the gym last night, swam laps this morning, managed to throw together a program for the show we're doing on Monday, and bought a present and a card for my roommate for her birthday. The house isn't a complete disaster, and I've managed to keep my car relatively clean. Also, I haven't bounced a check this week. Truly, it's the little things.

I talked to Spencer today on the phone. Apparently he doesn't hate me. He's just been busy. Truly I am a neurotic person. I hate that I have these horrible abandonment issues. But I do. This has been predetermined by my previous experiences. I am preconditioned to runaway from every good thing in my life before they eventually run away from me.

I am one of the most independent people in the world, and I resent with every fiber of my being that I need people. I love people. I love being needed. But I am wracked with fear whenever I find myself needing someone else. Because eventually, they will leave and I will need them. And they won't be there. And that will hurt. And as an intelligent human being, I seek to avoid pain.

So here's my rambling confessions. This is perhaps too much for a blog. But hey--maybe someone else who appears to be functioning and sane in public will get something out of my confessions and perhaps not feel quite so alone in their own insanity.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

I am not a loser

All right. I'm not a pathetic loser.

I finally got some things done today!

I cast the Stake play last night. That was a beast! But thanks to my fabulous producer, we went out to Chili's and hammered out a brilliant cast. It's going to be wonderful!

This morning I woke up and headed to the gym--then I went and papered the town with posters advertising the summer workshops I'm teaching with Spencer in August.

And now, I'm getting ready to go and teach my English class tonight. I'm going to have a mini careers workshop with them. I figure, where else are they going to learn how to write a business letter or type up a decent resumee! I'm excited. Most of my students are taking my class because they have to--and they don't see any benefit from studying literature. So, amidst the stories we're reading--I'm trying to throw in some great "how to" stuff.

I watched Michelle Obama on the view this morning while I was on the elliptical. I like her. She's a very likable woman. She makes me so happy.

And now I'm going to teach my wonderful students. Did I mention that I got to watch my students graduate this weekend? It was my first graduation as a professor!! It made me all vaklempt inside!!

Tuesday, June 17, 2008


Today I am a pathetic loser.

Oh well. Whatever.

A day in the life

I auditioned for Peg in The Way of The World by William Congreve at The Shakespeare Theatre today. Lesley Larsen was also invited to audition for the same part, so we rode the metro into the city together and had a wonderful time strutting our stuff for Michael Kahn. She's doing the show in Floyd with Spencer and I next week, so we crammed in a rehearsal this afternoon before we all had to go our separate ways. Spencer came over and saw that I had killed the plant he bought for me. I felt a little bit of shame at that. But I warned him! I told him I would kill a plant if he bought me one. And I did.

He's too busy for me now. And I'm too busy pretending to not miss him when he's around to be enjoyable. He acts like spending any time with me is a complete waste. And i know he has lots of other things to do. He's in rehearsal 12 hours a day--but it still hurts. We used to actually enjoy each other's company. I hate feeling like a drag. It's not in my best interest to be around people who make me feel like that.

And so, as the plant dies, so does our friendship. It sucks. But hey--what can you do? He's more concerned that I killed the plant than he is about me. And that sucks more. I'm sure time will pass and I hope that we can be close friends again, but it's hard to feel that it's possible right now.

Oh well. Life goes on.

I auditioned with STC today! And I did great! And I got to hang out with Lesley.

Good things happened today. And now, I need to come up with a title for the show we're doing next week. I haven't got a clue!!

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Charity never faileth--and a good workout helps too!

After sleeping in, I forced myself out of the downward spiral I was headed towards.

It took everything in me to drag my sorry body to the gym after eating an entire package of cookie dough.

I changed up my workout routine because my foot is killing me. I went on the elliptical for 2 miles, then headed to do sit-ups. I could feel the adrenaline pumping through me. I was so angry at myself for becoming depressed. I kept going faster and faster in this effort to run away from the place I had been last night and this morning. I felt mainly motivated by anger, so I used it.

After doing sit-ups, I ran down to the pool and swam laps for 20 minutes.

It was a nice change in pace from the normal workout. I get angry that nothing seems to change--but I don't need to rebel against my lack by punishing myself.

I need to just push through the depression. I came home and was going to read in Mosiah where I had left off, but I felt compelled to read about Charity in 1 Corinthians. After teaching the lesson a couple weeks ago, I remembered the corrolation between Love and Know. This idea sunk in as I reread the verse: 12 For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known.

Translation: For now we see through a glass darkly; but then face to face: now I love in part; but then shall I love even as also I am loved.

It's so easy to forget how to truly love someone, to forget how to love someone when they're being a jerk. But God loves us entirely, and someday, He will bless us to be able to love others even as He loves us now.

I have to remember that this is what I'm striving for. I have to remember that life isn't about what I weigh or how much money I have--it's about how much I love myself and others.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Finding Peace

I'm sitting in class, watching my students write on two stories we just read in class. The stories are "Joy" by Anton Chekhov and "King M" by Crispin Oduobuk. In both stories, we have stupid people who do stupid things. They're really funny and I hope the class got something out of the stories. I swear I'm the best fake professor in the world. I feel utterly unqualified to be teaching the classes I'm teaching--but I seem to be good at it. I can count on one hand, the times in my life that I've had a job where I feel like I'm using my talents well. It's not a stretch for me. I can blabber on about story and character forever. I can make possessives interesting. I like my job.

The air conditioning is back on. Yippee!!

I was told that my direct deposit would go into affect today. It did not. This is the story of my life.

I'm so tired of saying, "Oh well! That's life!" Seriously--so sick of it.

I'm incredibly busy getting ready to direct the Stake play, teaching 5 classes, and producing and performing in a show for the Junebug Center. But amidst it all, I'm really trying to create a place of zen and peace for myself.

I'm trying to make it to the gym at least 4 times a week. I'm trying to eat right. I'm trying to read my scriptures everyday. I'm trying to be good with money and pay off my debts.

I'm trying really hard at everything.

The thing that frustrates me is that despite my best efforts, I'm still the same old me. I'm still single and insecure. I still make idiotic mistakes with money. I still view myself as horribly obese, especially compared with my skinny roommates. I'm still utterly without a date or any prospects. I still swear like a sailor.

I just want to feel like somewhere along the line, things will change. That all this work will contribute to a larger end. There are days where I trust. And then there are days where all I can see is the same things happening over and over again. And frankly, the repetition is depressing.

Monday, June 9, 2008

My tormented weekend.

I swear I'm not manic, but after my recent post about being sappy and happy--I experienced a tormented weekend.

Friday morning I woke up blissfully happy. I skipped downstairs to pay my bills since I finally have the money to do such things. I paid everything I could and then left myself a cushion of $76 until I got paid on Wednesday. No biggie. I've been living off nothing for the past week! I paid my student loan bills, phone bill, etc. All was well!

I left for the gym, but first turned on the AC for the first time this summer. It's sweltering. I was looking forward to coming home to a nice cool house. (Can you hear the birds chirping on my wonderful life?)

Then the weekend from hell began.

I came home from the gym and the house wasn't any cooler. Hmmmm. Maybe I should change the air filter! Nothing can bring me down! I packed my car ready to head off to Baltimore right after work. I was going to dog sit for my friends Megan and Jim. I was looking forward to a weekend of playing with animals!

Before leaving for work, my roommates informed me that the AC was broken.

Well, not a problem! I'll be gone for the weekend! (okay big problem, but I'm okay. . .we are okay!)

I got on the freeway and traffic seemed to moving at a nice steady pace, 15 mph. I could feel the wind blowing through my hair as my broken muffler sang along the highway. The AC's been out for ages. Then, just as I'm about 5 miles from work, I feel the clutch go out. I pull over to the side of the road and call Geico only to discover I don't have roadside assistance. I swallow my pride and call my mother. By this time the heat is getting to me and I can't think straight. It was 96 degrees, with 80% humidity and I was sitting in my car on the side of a busy freeway.

My mother graciously offered to pay for the tow.

The towtruck guy towed me and my car to work. I was an hour late, but better late than never!

My class ended at 8:30pm because only one student showed. (grrrrr.)

My roommate that kindly had offered to pick me up from class wasn't there by 10:15pm, so I got a ride home with a coworker. Then my kind roommate drove me to Baltimore so I could be with the doggy and kitties for the weekend.

I was armed with claritin, but not with tampons. And lo and behold, while trapped in a house, with no car, and no way to get tampons--my period started!!

I stayed in the air conditioned house, watching tv, and staying fairly comatose for a good 24 hours.

Good things that happened this weekend amidst the bad:

After forgetting to leave the keys in the car for the mechanic when I left work Friday night--I remembered that I had a spare key in the car that I had discovered while cleaning out the car on Thursday. Lucky me!

Morgan, my choir director at church, came and picked me up from Baltimore Sunday morning!

We sang an amazing spiritual at church yesterday, and I was able to be there for it!

I found that paper towels are great replacement for other things.

When I arrived home Sunday morning, the house was sweltering from the lack of AC.

Okay, so that last one wasn't exactly a good thing, but oh well.

Now I have to figure out how I'm going to pay to get my car fixed and find a ride to work tonight.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Sappy and Happy

I feel wonderful today!

I cleaned my car out for the first time in WAY too long. I filled the garbage can full of junk just before the trash man came and emptied it. I used the armorall wipes like they were going out of style and my little baby is a shining!!

I had a great workout at the gym!

I washed bedding!

I organized my classes!

I found a substitute for the classes I'm missing this quarter!

I'm performing a show in Floyd--which I have yet to create--and they're going to film it in segments with 3 cameras and a professional videographer. Then they're going to give us copies of it so we can have amazing demo reels!! This means that I have to work my butt off over the next few weeks--but I get $4,000 worth of footage of myself to send off to agents! Wahoo!!!

Right now my English class is busy writing their persuasive essays. They're going to be persuasive geniuses!

Sorry to be so happy go lucky, but this really has been a great week.

I went to the temple on Tuesday and had a great awakening thought: We arrive at our promised blessings BECAUSE of our trials--not inspite of them. I need to be more grateful for my trials. Because of them I have greater empathy and greater appreciation for the good times.