Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Breakfast + A Cleanse

I have horribly abused my body this summer with sugar, fat, and every kind of fried carb known to man. My body is now begging for mercy. Weird skin. Bad sleep. Unstoppable weight gain. Constant headaches. Something inflamed in my gut area. General feeling of grossness.

Breakfast is my favorite meal of the day in that I have to eat it. I can't skip eating in the morning, but I don't want dairy,  oatmeal, eggs,  meat, or even "fun" foods like waffles, french toast, pancakes, etc. Everything makes my body cringe. So, what to eat?  What to eat?

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Girls Who Are Friends

What I miss the most about being a little girl how much pure love, joy, and affection there was between me and my friends. We would hold hands, hug and kiss fiercely and not just when saying hello or goodbye, sleep in the same bed, talk for hours on the phone, play with each other's hair, and LAUGH until our stomachs hurt all without an ounce of being self-conscious about it.

I still want those things. I wonder if other women do, too. Whenever I have the urge to do any of those things with a girl friend, I'm worried they'll think I'm being needy or hitting on them. Maybe I am needy, but just for some good old-fashioned girl friend bonding.

Maybe that's why women want little girls. So we can have someone's hair to play with and hand to hold. Someone we can hug and kiss fiercely anytime our spirit moves us who will hug and kiss us back just as fiercely. Maybe I should roll up to my parents' house and ask my mom to lay her head on my lap so that I can play with her hair. She would probably think I'd just been diagnosed with a terminal illness.

Monday, June 15, 2015

Book Review: Girl on a Train by Paula Hawkins

I'm not sure how this book became popular (Oprah selection? Soon to be made into a motion picture?), but I'm glad it popped up on my radar. I love mysteries and suspense thrillers and it's not as easy to find ones written by female authors.*

The story is told from the viewpoints of three different, but variously connected, women. And what disasters the three of them are. I love flawed female characters. Either I can relate or they make me feel better about myself or give me insight into a type of life I wouldn't have otherwise given thought. I think it makes me softer and more forgiving. Here, there's the drunk, purposeless, cheated on, barren divorcee (Rachel), the former mistress turned stay-at-home mom (Anna), and the one who Rachel watches from the train and is neighbors with Anna. 

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Bar Books

Books I’m Reading While Studying for the Bar 

I’ve always been a voracious reader. It was an escape from my scary household when I was a kid. I loved character driven fiction and read a novel a week starting in late elementary school. I loved disappearing into the worlds fiction created in my mind.

But then law school sort of broke my imagination. The time before law school (BLS), I did my best to read books that wouldn’t be turned into movies or, if they were, before they became movies. I would never even see the movies. I read plenty of books that hid in dark corners of libraries and would never be turned into anything other than dust collectors. Bur during law school I don’t think I even read in bed before lights out during the semester. However, once the first set of finals came around, I was frozen with panic and I turned to my old friends – books. Oddly, I found that I could only read books that had been turned into movies that I had seen. My study schedule for finals: study for 30 minutes, read made-into-a-movie fiction for 30 minutes, nap for 30 minutes and repeat, while nursing a single sugar-free Red Bull for 18 hour periods.

I am now studying for the bar exam 7 years after graduation. I’ve already passed one, but had an urge to take the one in the state where I now live. Every few years I like to throw my life into upheaval and I think taking the bar is a manifestation of that. I have no reason to take this bar and no need to pass. I have a job that pays well. *knock on wood* I have no hopes of practicing at a firm or really elsewhere. I can’t imagine a scenario where it would make me more money than I already make. But at least it’s productive upheaval. It’s requiring me to focus and concentrate and I’m learning really just for the sake of learning.  If I pass, it’ll be the greatest accomplishment of my life so far. If I fail, it will be so devastating that it might just break my upheaval/self-sabotage habit.

Studying now, I find myself back needing to read to calm my stress. I don’t follow my 30-30-30 cycle or having to read books that have been turned into movies anymore, but I do read before bed and when I wake. (Reading in bed in the morning is my favorite time/way to read, but it’s the most time-consuming and tends to send me into anxiety-dom because I “waste” time reading when I should be doing something else.)

Books I’ve read/re-read since I started studying for the bar a month ago:

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Beauty Break I

I'd like to take a timeout to post a little something about my new skin care routine that has done wonders. This post is not sponsored by anyone or anything and I purchased all items with my own money. I decided to write it as I'm 35 and was carded at dinner the other night and I think it's because of my new skin are routine. I haven't been carded in about 5 years.

I had beautiful, downright poreless skin until I was 18. Then some terribly upsetting things happened in my life and my body reacted poorly and has never really recovered. I spent the next 10 years trying to get my horrible cystic acne under control. I took pills that turned my skin blue. Had to use 15 products every morning and every night that made the skin on my hand peel off in sheets. Took birth control that made everything worse. Finally, the acne settled down by about 90% once I stopped trying to control it, but by then my skin was a wasteland - scars, huge, clogged pores, sebaceous filaments/milia. My skin was oily up until the last year or so. Then it was all of the wasteland things and dry. It's like my pores are clogged with sand.

Monday, May 11, 2015

Ex Machina Review *SPOILERS*

Man-god creates "women" in his preferred image - mute, sexual, tall, brown, white - object variety pack. Knight in soft cotton t-shirt shows up to save one. Yes, the women save themselves and the men do get screwed, but the women still had to be manipulative and conniving and use their sexuality (which was programmed into them by a man) to get what they want from the men who GAVE THEM LIFE AND WERE JUST TRYING TO BE NICE TO THEM. Ungrateful, bitches. Amiright? Still a really good story. Plus brilliant acting, beautiful visuals, and a dance scene that will make you ask yourself, "Am I on drugs?" I recommend seeing it. Timely and original.

Mayweather-Pacquiao 5/2/2015

Going in, I was never under the illusion it was actually going to be the fight of the century. Maybe the most anticipated fight of the century so far. The fight had more action than I expected, but with a predictable outcome. Though it wasn't the most exciting fight of t he century, it may have been the most important. It may actually be The One to change sports viewing, especially the pay for viewing structure.  

Periscope and Meerkat, live-streaming applications for smartphones, allowed those that had purchased the fight to stream it and, those that didn't, to view it. It probably cost the promoters, the networks, and cable companies pennies on the dollar, but big companies are not known for their proportional responses when it comes to money and for good reason. Anyone remember Napster? How about buying whole CDs after only hearing a song or two? Yeah. The ability of consumers to share content for free changed the music industry forever. This might, too.

It makes sense for boxing fans to be the pioneers/original criminals. If you want to watch boxing these days, you need a $100+/mth cable bill*, not including PPV services that cost almost as much. If you're a fiscally responsible person living within a budget and don't make a living from watching sports, you probably cut the cable cord a while ago. Showing up at friends' houses with snacks and booze every Thursday/Friday/Saturday isn't sustainable. So, what to do?

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

The Maybe Games: U.S.-Iranian Relations

Tomorrow the U.S. and Iran might begin drafting the final terms of a nuclear agreement, which consists of Iran curtailing its nuclear programs and allowing for greater transparency and the rest of the world lifting nuclear-related sanctions that have been imposed.

As an Iranian-American, the idea of any type of interaction, much less an actual deal, between the two countries feels like a miracle. I clearly remember all the hubbub and excitement on the part of Iranians when Clinton and Khatami almost shook hands at a UN gathering. ALMOST SHOOK HANDS. This was about 15 years ago and I can remember the feeling that overtook me when I heard. There’s an initial feeling of euphoria when one’s mind automatically turns to if-only thoughts of a world where Iran and the U.S. get along. The euphoria is quickly replaced by pessimism when those thoughts are replaced by remembrance of the history between the two countries, followed by whispered eagerness and hope, quiet desperation, and finally despondent resignation. We wipe such ridiculous notions from our mind and march on with our torn lives.

So, where am I according to the five stages of U.S.-Iranian grief?