Monday, March 28, 2011

Playlist Live and Cantaloupe

Do you ever get to that point where you're stretched out on your bed, shirt folded up so as not to constrict the belly you've just stuffed to the brink with pizza, baskets of clean laundry piled at your feet, desk strewn with notebooks and empty cups and a plush alligator? And do you ever find yourself thinking, while in this position, Gee, the most logical thing for me to do right now would be to write a blog post, rather than tend to the hundred little disasters around me? What's that? You CAN relate? Oh, Blog. I knew I liked you.

Since we last spoke, I finished up another academic quarter with brilliant mediocrity, roadtripped to Florida with The Situation, and attended the youtube conference Playlist Live where all my most magical dreams came true, from bonding with Tyler Oakley to hot-tubbing between both members of ALL CAPS to touching Emerson Spartz to eating cantaloupe. The first item in the previous list was stressful (my school limited everybody's internet usage during finals week to save money but, oh, fear not, they didn't limit the five-star hotels for our perpetually losing football team), the second item was fun and relaxing, the third worthy of its own paragraph (below), and the fourth was somehow a six-dollar expense because that's the way Orlando rolls.

But enough about melons; let's gossip. Playlist Live ended up being pretty fantastic. The event definitely had its faults, like setting up a "VIP party" which I attended for about ten minutes before realizing it was more or less a "I bet I can outdouche you" competition between young people with way too much money and even more ego, but everyone I met who doesn't check their subscriber counts every fourteen seconds was lovely as can be. I hung out at the gorgeous outdoor pool where I had sassy bikini-clad girl talk with italktosnakes (control yourselves!), admired Nanalew, Strawburry17 and Meekakitty who all manage (miraculously) to be even more beautiful in person, and asked embarrassing questions of Dan Brown because "you promised to let the internet control your life this year and I am the internet so answer me." I also got to hang out with graphic designer extraordinaire Karen Kavett, my teenage dreams Alex Carpenter and Jason Munday, and a whole slew of Nerdfighters from all over the country (and some beyond), each amusing and awesome and adorable and every other positive A-adjective you can imagine. Dave Days was really polite and seems like a genuinely nice guy, Wheezy Waiter is an all-around champion at life, and at the end of the day, the people I'd expected to be cool were very much cool, and the only people I rolled my eyes at are the ones I've been eye-rolling all along. Internet personalities may not be a perfect reflection of the real people behind them, but they appear to be close.

So yeah, my spring break was an all-around success. I spent a cathartic day at my family's vacation place and wore out my feet (in the best possible way) on a long beach walk with my parents, heard some exciting family news*, talked and laughed with this pianist guy I'm very much in love with, and felt real sun on my face for the first time in months. Even crappy airtravel mini-disasters couldn't undo the pleasant feeling I've been riding since I got home. And that's saying something.***

Anyway, it's now past midnight and the laundrysplosion surrounding my gelatinous self is looking like more of an issue, so I should probably stop typing and go tend to that. I'm starting all new classes this week, so hopefully I'll have news to report about my collegiate adventures in the future. In the meantime, check out this video I just posted on my brand new secondary youtube channel, if you're bored, and I hope to see you around these parts soon!

Chipotle burritos this year: 3
Subscribers: 47,888
Nail color: "Broken and gross" by the I'm Lazy line
Miles run today: -100, +1 pizza

*Can you keep a secret? I mean, you don't really have to, but calling it a secret sounds so much more fun. Guess what. My sister and her husband are finally pregnant!**

**She is technically the only pregnant one, but he helped.

***At one point I was seated between two basketball players, both asleep with his legs spread widely apart, one thigh from each pushing on my skirt-clad legs in a much too intimate way. At another point, I almost went off on a crazy rant when the entire airline staff continually addressed an innocent woman (she was Chinese but speaking perfectly decent, passable English) in that SLOW. LOUD. SPACED-OUT. VOICE. IGNORANT. AMERICANS. USE. ON. FOREIGNERS. Meanwhile, the world's most annoying seven-year-old boy in front of my repeatedly burst into five-second tears over his homework (Yes, kid, Mexico is part of North America. It's not that hard to draw an oval. "Answer" has a W in it.), the overhead compartments were not nearly big enough to hold even my very reasonably-sized bag, and my first plane was so late that I nearly missed the second. *Deep breath.* #whitegirlproblems

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

In which childhood dreams punch me in the face.

This afternoon, my computer punched me in the face.

I'd been in that typical late-winter mood since I woke up-- you know, when your skin's all dry and your jeans are too tight and you decide the missing leaves from the trees are a metaphor for the missing purpose from your life and waaah-- and I had assumed my typical after-class position, lying down with my laptop propped on my knees. Just a regular day. Watching The Best of Adam Sandler on Netflix, eating simple carbs, wallowing in the quiet misery of being rich and white. It was just when my mind had started down the path of I'm pathetic and wasting my time by getting this useless degree from an institute whose only real claim to fame is being consistently recognized by for its great keggers... when it hit me. Literally. A slight movement caused my aluminum laptop to slide down my thighs and, at full speed, knock me straight in the mouth. All I did at the time was swear and flail, but little did I know: The universe was trying to convey a message to me.

Still, I carried on as usual, having misinterpreted that painful beacon of fate as just another example of gravity wanting to spite me. It wasn't until later, when I was flopping my winter thighs around the indoor track of our school gym, that I finally got the message.

I like to let my mind wander while I run, and perhaps it stemmed from my earlier thoughts about the pointlessness of my Creative Writing degree, but I happened to recall a seemingly random memory from seventh grade Sunday School. Our teacher had asked us to go around the circle and introduce ourselves by saying our names and what we wanted to be when we grew up. I was (shockingly!) a bit of a douchebag when I was thirteen, and I clearly remember trying to overshadow all the would-be firemen and nurses by saying, "I'm Hayley, and I want to write for Saturday Night Live." Truthfully, I had only ever seen the first two sketches of each episode from the foot of my parents' bed before they turned it off and I went to my room, but I always liked what I'd seen, and I knew I'd sound cool for saying so. And I loved that dream-- someday being adult and sophisticated, writing topical jokes about politics I understood, seeing my name on a screen while trumpets played, having some little Maya Rudolph smile. So I said, "And maybe I'll be a cast member, too, but I mainly just want to write."

My Sunday School teacher nodded and said something falsely earnest like, "I'm sure you will be someday!" because she was supposed to encourage us and therefore couldn't have said, "That's cute, but in twenty years you'll be living down the street from your parents, working at the library, and crying yourself to sleep every night while your second husband rubs ointment into his varicose veins." Lately, though, that depressing spiel has been feeling a lot more realistic.

I could see that teacher's face in my head tonight, while I ran laps. I was thinking about it, dwelling on the particular sadness of having been more confident about my career aspirations when I had braces than I am at age twenty... when Fate threw a sign at my head that was much, much, much heavier than a laptop. I was minding my own business when a tall blonde girl entered the track and started jogging out in front of me, and I swear to you, on my Scout's Honor, because I could not make this shit up*... she was wearing a t-shirt... with the Saturday Night Live logo on the back.

Uh, yeah. Seconds after having resigned myself to someday being Ohio's Funniest English Teacher Who Hates Herself, I found myself quite literally chasing my childhood dream. Isn't life hilarious? Somehow, some stranger wearing a souvenir from the NBC giftshop was all it took to restore my seventh grade optimism, at least for a while. Somehow, I feel more inspired to write tonight.

Cue the big band music.

Chipotle burritos this year: 3
Subscribers: 46,565
Nail color: "You Don't Know Jacques," OPI.
Miles run today: 4
Miles run this year: Lost track a week ago. It was fun while it lasted.

*Okay, in actuality, I could make this shit up-- fairly easily, even-- but I did not. This account is all true. My goal is to write for SNL, guys, not Saved by the Bell.