Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Novelistic Coincidences

I didn't have the time to read over yesterday's entry before I posted it, but I knew it was little more than a disjointed attempt to get something-- anything-- up and online. None of its content was particularly witty or thought-provoking. There was scarcely any continuity from paragraph to paragraph, and none of it needed to be said, anyway. So why do I bother? Why do I write this blog?

The obvious short answer, Because I'm an Attention Whore, doesn't quite cut it, because there are all kinds of quicker and more efficient ways to make people listen to you. Just ask Fred and Heidi Montag. No, it's something beyond that. The truth is, I write about my inane today-to-day life because I operate under the delusion that I am a character in a novel.

I'm not alone in this problem-- I think it plagues a lot of book nerds. We're so used to getting wrapped up in a fictional world, searching for foreshadowing and symbolism, and coming out of it feeling like we've Learned Something. I think I blog because it gives me the chance to pretend like every day has a denouement. I get to pretend my life has meaning that, when properly analyzed, could be beneficial to somebody else... instead of the reality of the situation, which is the fact that nobody cares.

Hahaha. Don't worry, guys-- I'm pretty much just inventing angst. I have a cold, which sucks, and this week seems to be dragging on forever, which is aggravating, but I have very little to complain about. My classes are all as good as they could be. I have free time and good friends and am head-over-heels. My only complaint is that, unfortunately, I am real. And not a book.

Anyway, I'm thinking about all this stuff in the first place because the number of novel-like coincidences I encounter on a weekly basis are getting absurd. In class today, I asked some girl next to me, "What's Alicia Silverstone been doing for the last decade? I feel like she disappeared." An hour later, and guess who had a cameo on Oprah? ALICIA SILVERSTONE. Honestly, have you heard a peep from her since her crappy canceled Fox show? No. For you hardcore Hayleylujah Chrous followers, I think this is another Michael Jackson/John Hughes type of deal. Let's hope my "psychic powers" fail me this time and Alicia doesn't join the club and spontaneously drop dead.

A huger coincidence: I was zoned out all day, thinking about my poor, neglected novel. When I finally got back to my room and opened my computer, I stared at the blank screen for a full minute before typing, "I need a directional sign. I suck at this." With a sigh, I pulled my hand away from hovering over the keys, so I could clumsily pick up my ringing phone from its spot on my bookshelf. I hit the side of the already wobbly shelf with the back of my hand (which hurt!), and the impact sent a flimsy paperback flying onto the floor. Halfheartedly, I picked up Robert's Rules of Writing by Robert Masello-- the only book of writing advice I've ever loved and trusted-- and flipped to a random page.

The page, titled "Keep the Faith" (yes, Leah!), advised me to stop pretending to write a book and just write a freaking book. So... I am. Or am trying, at least. Isn't life funny sometimes?

Sexy: Whataboutadam. Also, leaving cryptic messages of advice for whataboutadam in the "sexy" section of your blog. LOOK IN THE MURR AND GO FOR THE SNOOKI GOLD, ADAM.
Unsexy: Distance. Blah.

Chipotle burritos this year: 3
Subscribers: 24,000 on the dot!
Nail color: "I'm Not Really a Waitress," OPI

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Rescue Missions and Loitering

Good afternoon, blogosphere. Is there any word (coined by old people who have no idea what they're talking about) more nauseating than "blogosphere?" I'm going to start referring to this as "The 'Net," too. And going to dinner at Wendy's at four o'clock.

Anyway, how's it going? I talked to many of you last night, because my roommate decided to do a BlogTV show and I tweeted the link. It was fun, and she did a really good job, but I made the mistake of looking at a computer screen for too long a period of time before bed. All my dreams were of streaming video and twitter and usernames and all kinds of other mundane things that should not stay in my brain after I've shut my laptop. Blah.

The only other notable event of this week occurred yesterday. This cool girl from down the hall, Kelsey, had taken a bus to go to a dentist or something, and when she was done, public transport passed by her twice, stranding her. Freshmen aren't allowed to have cars on campus, but I have access to my sister's, because she's a senior. So, with the help of Erin's directional sense and my secret agent-like badassitude, Kelsey was rescued. ...It was significantly less significant than I'm trying to make it sound, to be honest, but so little has happened lately. So let me have this one hurrah.

Oh! I went home this weekend. I got to have Panera with Lor, and pretty much got kicked out of a Walmart with Jess for loitering, because those are the ways kids have fun in the farmlands. My oldest sister and brother-in-law were on vacation, and my brother was... out of state for some reason, I think... so my visit was rather uneventful. Other than seeing friends, hugging my parents, petting my dog, baking, and taking a bath, home isn't a whole lot different from school. Especially when the majority of your time is spent on your bed, talking to The Situation over Skype.

Ah, yes. So we've come to the one topic you're all dying to know more about. And I could tell you, but The Situation would probably extract way too much pleasure from the attention, and he doesn't really need any more. All you need to know, I guess, is that I have literally never felt so consistently overjoyed, and that he is inordinately good at being... good. Really. Look up the word "good" in the dictionary, and he pretty much fits all six definitions.

Again with the gushing. I apologize. Gross.

Sexy: Katrina (walllofweird on youtube). She just @replied me to tell me to update my blog, and I will, because she is lovely. And because I was already finishing when I saw her tweet. But mostly because she's lovely.
Unsexy: Having class until 10PM, as I do on Tuesday nights. The unsexiness of the time block is definitely counteracted, however, by the fact that I get to giggle the whole time with PJ, who sits to my right and is utterly fantastic, a million times over.

Chipotle burritos this year: 2
Subscribers: 23,945
Nail color: "I'm Not Really a Waitress," OPI

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Nachos and Senryu

I know this is only my second quarter of college, but I'm beginning to think it's, like, required to take one long, miserably boring lecture, designed solely for perusing Facebook and playing online Scrabble. I'm in that class right now, but I have Leah on Skype and Passion tea in my left hand, so the PowerPoints about recessive genes aren't fazing me much.

School life is kind of slow and lazy lately. The foot of snow that covered every surface when we came back from Christmas break is now long gone, and it's been replaced by cold rain. My group of friends has been spending more time inside, and Roomie and I have been eating nachos at a rather disgustingly rapid pace. (Okay, okay. My pace is rapid and disgusting. Hers is normal and polite, but I wanted to pass off a little bit of the blame.) Tonight, I think I'm getting together with my new friend, Aaron, with whom I made the Nickelback jokes, to study for a Linguistics test, and then going to see a performance by the improv troupe whose Thundercats reference last spring was the ultimate influence in my decision to attend OU. ...Or I'll be too cold and snuggled in my bed to bother walking uphill, and will end up watching 30 Rock all night. (A quote from last week: "Oh, we're going to have fun! We're going to stay here and eat nachos and see who can fall asleep the earliest!")

In other news, The Situation situation is incomprehensibly fantastic. He's positively brilliant--shockingly, even-- but he thinks I'm the smart one, and we're always teaching each other things. He's complicated, but understanding each other is so easy and natural. And... I'm going to stop gushing now, before you all vomit onto your keyboards. Just know that I'm deliciously, deliriously happy.

Speaking of delicious, delirious happiness (which is a phrase I stole blatantly and bluntly from Megan McCafferty), Perfect Fifths took place in "real time" on January 19, 2010. In celebration, I reread the portions of the book that are written in poetry and swooned and mooned. Many of my blog readers have messaged to tell me how much they adore the Jessica Darling series, so, once again, if you haven't read Sloppy Firsts by Megan McCafferty... do it. The first couple of books, while about a teenage girl, are jaw-droppingly smart, and the final book demonstrates what a masterpiece the whole series had managed to be, almost without your noticing. Trust me on this one. I'll leave you with a tiny sample of Senryu from the novel because, frankly, I cannot help myself.

XI. She writes
Stop, go, stop, go, stop
This train taunts and teases me
Just as you once did

XII. He writes
I like the way you
Fingertip-tap the paper
To count syllables

Sexy: Poetry. Not, like, rhyming "black" with "soul," but good poetry like John Donne and Shakespeare and Sharon Olds.
Unsexy: Eating butter.

Chipotle burritos this year: 2
Subscribers: 23,694
Nail color: "Mango Mango," L'Oreal

Monday, January 18, 2010

The Situation

Firstly, I'd like to thank Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Without him, the hill between my dorm and my sister's house would not be able to smell so strongly of marijuana on this fine holiday from classes.

Today, Roomie and I celebrated civil rights by rearranging our furniture. This adventure required the strength of our friends Johnny and James, as well as the lazy commentary of Heather, Erin and Katie. We had to shove the majority of our school friends into our tissue box-sized dorm to do it, but now Roomie's bed is lofted, my bookshelf is next to my bed, and we've accomplished a hell of a lot more than we did on Stay in Bed All Day Sunday.

In other news, as I was hiking up the hill whose aroma suggests it was the site of some kind of weed bonfire last night, I decided what to call the person I blogged about yesterday. He's not a boy, and he's not a man, and we're not together, but we're definitely not not together. So, just like my first love received the laughably unfitting pseudonym of Justin Timberlake for the purposes of this blog, my new notable interest will hereby be referred to as The Situation.

If you live outside America, under a rock, or were born before 1983, allow me to explain why this is funny. There's a positively vile television show on MTV (remember when MTV played music? Neither do I. It hasn't, within my lifetime) called Jersey Shore, in which a group of repugnant spray-tanned twenty-somethings fight and cry and sex and talk about insipid things with Staten Island accents. And, perhaps the douchebaggiest of them all, who is described on the show's website as having "a sensitive side, but plenty of game to go with it," calls himself The Situation. The thought of my own, um, "Situation" as a fist-pumping guido is about as realistic as my Justin Timberlake frontmanning choreographed dance moves. So. The Situation it is.

In response to yesterday's comments, no, he is not the Breadstick Guy. I only ever spoke about three words to him, haven't seen him since, and, frankly, don't even remember what he looked like. Contrary to popular belief and hope, the Situation is ALSO NOT Charlie McDonnell. Sorry, guys. Never gonna happen. I'll tell you his name sometime soon-- he gave me permission before I ever asked. "I understand that, with your lifestyle, my ass is getting blogged about, and I don't want you to hold back for my sake," he said. Haha. Soonish, guys. I promise.

Anyway, four-day weekends have this ability to fan my already deadly procrastination habit, so I ought to go start all the homework I chose to neglect until tonight. Before I go, though, I want to give a huge congratulatory hug to commeter Annie, who reached an incredibly exciting milestone yesterday. I'm so excited for you; thanks for telling me!

Sexy: The fact that my friend Leah, an aspiring screenwriter and all-around awesome person, is now keeping a daily blog, which you can read here.
Unsexy: "Your face!" says my sister. There you have it.

Chipotle burritos this year: 1
Subscribers: 23,615
Nail color: "Mango Mango," L'Oreal

P.S. I love PJ and his BlogTV shows and am sorry I didn't mention him in this post before, despite the fact that he's an attention whore.

Oh man. (Nice, huh?)

I confess. I can't keep up the whole omg-I'm-so-happy-for-no-reason-whatsoever shtick forever. There is a reason. And this reason is a boy.

Except... is it? If you follow my tweets, you'll know that I've been pondering all day about where to draw the line between "boy" and "man." It's a daunting concept-- I'm now old enough to have this be a legitimate concern. Graham, my friend who got married and moved to New York last year, is unarguably a Man at twenty-one. But would I have called him that last January? I don't know. Probably not... but I'd attribute that more to the fact that I was in high school, and high schoolers don't have friends who are Men. And take my big brother, for example. He's funny in the youthful, goofball way, and he always will be, but he's in law school, and he's a man. I don't mean to sound like a Seventeen Magazine advice column, but I can't help but notice that all the Boys around me are suddenly, like, grown-ups.

I could have dealt with that three weeks ago, before I knew Him. But if it weren't already enough that I'm falling for someone more quickly and deeply than I ever have in my life, it's a genuine possibility that I am falling for my first ever, well... man.


Chipotle burritos this year: 1
Subscribers: 23,591
Nail color: "Mango Mango," L'oreal

Saturday, January 16, 2010

People are good.

It was during last night's four-hour BlogTV show (what? What were YOU doing on your Friday night that qualifies you to judge me, Blog Reader?) that I, surprisingly, came to a conclusion.

If I had the ability to travel back in time and talk to my eighth grade self, I would positively hate myself.* Fourteen-Year-Old Hayley wouldn't understand the ironic significance of Current Hayley's acceptance of Disney Channel culture, nor would she be able to tolerate Current Hayley's ditzy nail polish obsession. And if Fourteen-Year-Old Hayley were to see Current Hayley's tweets, she'd think, first, What is a tweet? and second, Your positivity and I-love-the-worldness makes me want to puke.

I'm not going to be so pretentious as to say my newfound optimism is a product of maturity, because I'm currently sporting a side-ponytail and there's a poster of prepubescent Dan Radcliffe on my wall. But whether this cheerfulness is a product of having grown up... or just due to circumstances... I'm happy. Much to the chagrin of the fourteen-year-old inside of me, I thoroughly believe that people are primarily good. I've lost the majority of the cynicism that used to make me feel holier-than-thou, but I think I'm probably better off now, with my sunny disposition and my Miley Cyrus and my nauseatingly effervescent blogs.

Anyway, this has been one extremely long-winded way to make a simple statement: My friends and family are spectacular.

It's not that I often forget this fact, but there are times when I'm so consumed with love for them that I need to puke my soul all over the internet, for the whole world to see. The kindness and character and depth of the people who love me is ridiculous. I'm so grateful and so freaking lucky. The end.

Sexy: Elizabethtown. I'm watching it with my roommates right now, and I am, once again, astounded by how much it touches me. Without a doubt, my favorite movie of all time. (Unrelated note: My friend Heather has officially moved in with Erin, who lives two doors down, so I have three roommates far more often than I have one. Just for future reference.)
Unsexy: Distance, when it's keeping you from important people.

Chipotle burritos this year: 1
Subscribers: 23,555
Nail color: "You Don't Know Jacques," OPI

*Or I'd tackle myself. Don't even act like that situation wouldn't be terrifying. I'd also probably demand that the older version of myself take me to Hogwarts, because-- let's be honest-- if time travel exists and Hogwarts doesn't, the universe doesn't have its priorities in order.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Your Changing Language

My Linguistics teacher is a multilingual graduate student from Ukraine. She's positively beautiful-- tall and skinny, long dark hair, perfect nails-- and her voice is just as elegant as her posture. Her accent makes "syntax" and "sentence" sound identical, and she occasionally mispronounces a word, like using a long A in "cavity," but she's easy to understand and impossible to ignore. I have this class every morning at 10AM, and I swear to you, as I walk down the steps of the building every day, I have the same thought: I love college.

True, there's a group of boys who sit next to me and usually discuss how drunk they were the night before, or, on special occasions, how drunk they still are. And they often provide such insights to class discussion as, "Do you have any idea what she's talking about? I have no idea what she's talking about." Naturally, I was less than thrilled to be assigned a group project, not wanting to subject myself to large amounts of work while a couple of stooges talked about how "gay*" everything is. But I lucked out.

I'm working with two smart boys, one of whom was in my English class last quarter, and I had a surprisingly fun time working on a PowerPoint with them this afternoon. We need to make a presentation about how much English changes with use, so we've turned ours into the style of a '50s sex ed film. "Don't be embarrassed of your changing language! It happens to everybody!" As an example, we're using the word "awful," as it originally meant "awe-inspiring" and now generally means "unpleasant." For the first meaning, a picture of the Grand Canyon. For the second... a picture of Nickelback.

HAHA. I'm sorry. As one of my partners said, "I hope we don't offend anybody by doing that, but honestly... it's not our fault for criticizing Nickelback. It's their fault for listening to it." I concluded our study session by showing them (which you NEED to visit), and giggling to myself for the rest of the day.

Maybe I'm biased, as I'm one of them, but I can't help but think that my age group is made up of the most amusing people alive. I mean, seriously. Kanye West memes? Ugg boots? We understand comedy.

Sexy: Pianos. Elaboration is not needed, as I am stating the most obvious and true fact to ever be an obvious and true fact.
Unsexy: I'm sorry. Listen to what you wish. But, like, come on now.

Chipotle burritos this year: 1
(My brother just texted me to say he's keeping count of his burritos, too, and plans to beat me. Pfft. Yeah, OKAY.)
Subscribers: 23,481
Nail color: A dark grayish brown by OPI

*I don't think we need to go over this again, but do me a favor, guys, and just never say it. Please? It's mean and it makes you sound predictable and bigoted.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Aaaand she's back.

[Disclaimer: Lately, I am in a perpetually good mood. While much of this post sounds kind of depressing, I am very happy-- both happy in my life, and happy to be back, writing to you.]

It was approximately seven hours into my day-long obsession with Formspring this December that I realized just how much of myself I give to the internet. I don't mean that in a "Zomg, my life is so hard-- people I've never even met care deeply about me!" way. I'm extremely grateful for the undeserved gift of my readers and viewers. I bring this all upon myself, and the vast majority of the time, I live for it. Even in my blogging absence, thoughts crossed my mind that I was dying to post. But, for two months, I fought those inherent urges to publish my naked soul. I did this for a few reasons.

Why I Haven't Blogged:

--Originally, it was because something truly awful happened in the life of a friend, and I neither possessed the drive to explain it cryptically enough so as not to dip into her privacy, nor the audacity to pretend it didn't exist and carry along my merry way while she was sad. And, frankly, her sadness weighs heavily on me, and she is significantly more important than my anecdotes about Mexican food. (Things are now as good and normal as they can be after a permanent loss, and, as my friend is the strongest person I know, she is doing well.)

--First dates are significantly less interesting when the other person knows, quite nearly, everything about you. Half the fun of meeting new people is telling stories to test their reactions, and watching them try to figure you out. You're excited to get their backstory, see if you understand them, and see if they understand you. Subscribing to a girl's every thought kind of ruins any chance she has at being intriguing.

--Winter break (without a temporary retail job, at least, which I did not have this time) is a flat-out uneventful time. Had I tried to come up with something fascinating to say every other day, I would have resorted to complaining about the world, which a) already occurs plenty often in this blog, and b) is downer. I don't know a lot of people who need another downer around commercial Christmastime, when the air is already thick with stress and money and family drama. And my family? They're good. They wouldn't have deserved whatever I resorted to bitching about in order to fulfill my self-imposed writing requirement.

--I wanted to sleep all morning and go out all night. Sue me; I'm nineteen. :)

--I just didn't feel like it. It's true that this dump for my whiny attempts at self-expression can be widely therapeutic at times (your witty comments alone tend to recharge me on sad days and make me happy to be living my life!), but sometimes the best therapy is to have a little bit of time alone. I've always been stumped about the question of whether I'm introverted or extroverted, because, like, I don't think it's standard introvert behavior to make a living off attention whoring, but the writer portion of my brain loves nothing more than to have privacy and ideas that I keep, solely, to myself. So, until I figure myself out, we're just going to have to go with the flow, I suppose. Over my winter break, The Flow didn't feel like blogging. Now It does.

Why I'm Glad I'm Glad I Wasn't Blogging:

--I feel really good, guys. It's like, for the time being, things are naturally working themselves out. I have good control over my relationships and my schoolwork and my emotions, and every life event appears to be happening for a reason. It's a good spell, and I'm not feeling regretful about a whole lot, so I can't help but think there was some kind of fateful reason why I didn't feel like writing for the last two months. Call me crazy. (No, seriously. You have my permission to call me crazy in the comments, because I just reread that paragraph, and I sound like one of those loopy existentialist English teachers that deck their classrooms out in dream-catchers and tell you to "feel your fate." I guess this is foreshadowing for my inevitable future career of owning several cats and painting my face with glue while I grade papers. I already dress like an English teacher, anyway.)

Why I'm Glad to be Back:

--It makes me feel... I don't know, validated? It makes me feel validated when I hear from readers who legitimately look forward to learning about my non-adventures. I've received countless heartwarming messages recently from people who wanted to make sure I'm okay and urge me to write. That's ridiculous. I'm so lucky and blessed and grateful.

I'm sorry that I disappeared with no warning, and I'll try to be more diligent about keeping you informed. You're loyal and sweet enough that I owe that to you. Until then, though... I think I'm back!

Sexy: Ben Folds. I've had this song in my head all day, and it's not annoying me yet.
Unsexy: Honestly, I've been sitting here for a full two minutes, trying to think of something worthy of complaining about. I'm so happy. I've got nothin'. Too bad, right?

Chipotle burritos this year: 1
Subscribers: 23,413
Nail color: A dark grayish brown by OPI

Bye, guys! Hopefully I'll see you... soon. Hahaha. <3