Ruminations on College Graduation

It’s a bizarre feeling to be completely done with college.
It actually took me a bit longer than my fellow graduates, because I had to fix all the citations in my senior seminar paper before I turned it in, and they were a shambles. I just hit the send button on the email containing it, however, and now it is completely, 100% official- I am done with school FOREVER.
I wrote that sentence with the aim of sounding dramatic, but honestly it doesn’t to me. That’s because it seems surreal. Truthfully that’s how much of last week seemed to me. I was doing all these things that you do in your last week of school, but it just seemed like it was all fake. I was going through the motions that someone was telling me to go through. It didn’t feel significant; I didn’t even cry at all the day of graduation. My mind just feels like, Yes, summer! See you next semester, college! And I want to say to it MIND YOU ARE WRONG IT IS OVER. But apparently, I have done school so long that my mind just can’t comprehend not doing it. So here I am, a college graduate, resembling a rudderless boat cast adrift in the stormy seas of life.
But let me go back a little, and share my week leading up to graduation.
Finals week was surprisingly easier than I expected. The way my school does it, the last week of school consists of regular class on Monday and Tuesday, and then finals are on Wednesday through Friday, just depending on what classes you have. But for various reasons, my three finals were on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday, so I was done early in the week. That just left me with the monster paper. I planned to spend all Wednesday night working on it, but then Oklahoma weather stepped in and we almost got smashed by a tornado in my college town. My sister and I chose to evacuate home to our parents, and I’m glad we did because my school lost power for the night. I was able to get a little bit of work done, but not as much as I would’ve liked to because we were busy being concerned over whether my car (still at college since I rode home with my sister) was going to be pummeled by hail or sucked into a twister, along with the majority of my possessions. Luckily no tornado was forthcoming, at least near my college, and my things remained unscathed. That was an enlivening way to spend a day in finals week, friends.
The next day was by far the most difficult. Thursday was my last day at the daycare I’ve worked at for the past three years. I basically grew up and matured there, and some of those kids I’ve seen grow up as well. One of my absolute favorite kids was barely one when I started working there,  and now she’s a rambunctious four year old. It’s hard to believe how much has changed within me and within my life because of that job. I had a party with the class I’ve been working with this semester, the older school age kids. We enjoyed some delicious ice cream and partied it up with paint. When the day was over, and I’d cleaned and closed down my room for the last time, I stood in the dark for a few minutes and just cried. Then I got myself together and said my goodbyes.
Thursday night was crunch time. I graduated the next day, and that meant my paper needed to be finished. I went to the library for the last time, and stayed there until they kicked me out at 2am. Then I went back to my apartment, sat down at my living room table, and I wrote the rest of my paper. I finished at around 6:15 in the morning, with a grand total of 33 pages. I didn’t know then, and I still don’t know now if those were quality pages of writing or not. My brain simply said, That’s enough. And I said, Yes, brain, whatever you say. I don’t think I’ve ever been so tired before that I actually felt drunk, but when I got in the shower at 6:30, and I closed my eyes to tip my head back into the water, I started falling backwards and had to grab the wall of the shower. I literally could not keep myself upright without the structural assistance of my shower. My legs were like jelly after not moving for four hours, and I had to sit down a few times. It was a bit rough. Sadly, by the time I laid down, I was so tired that I had trouble sleeping. I snatched fiveish hours of poor quality sleep before I had to get up, and get going. I was running around like a crazy person trying to get everything done before I drove home to get ready for graduation. After that, everything started moving in fast forward. We met some of my friends and family for dinner back in my college town, but it seemed like a split second before it was time for me to get to the school so we could take pictures before graduation. Putting on my robe and cords and sashes just seemed bizarre, like I was dressing up for a part in a play. My fellow graduates and I ended up loitering around in a hallway waiting for our pictures to be taken, and I got to see a bunch of my friends. Some of them were people I had gone to school with all four years; some were new friends. But all of them seemed a part of some dream. My school does two graduations for the different types of Bachelor’s degrees, so sadly a number of my friends graduated at 6 and I didn’t get to see them, including my roommate and best friend, Tiffany. I remember thinking, gosh, I’m probably never going to see them ever again, but I just couldn’t get upset because it seemed impossible. It still does.
Actual graduation itself was strange. It was in our tiny auditorium, since we didn’t even have enough graduates to fill up the front four rows of it. Our president talked forever, and honestly, I didn’t even really listen. My sister said it was mostly about how getting a Bachelor of Arts degree was dumb, so I guess I didn’t miss out. The graduate next to me in alphabetical order was Paige Simpson, and I think the best part of graduation for us was counting how many professors fell asleep during our president’s speech. You see, all the faculty was on the stage, which we were facing, and we basically were staring at them throughout the ceremony. And lord, they were dropping like flies, and it was truly one of the most hilarious things I’ve ever seen. At one point I had to demand Paige stop talking because I was on the verge of exploding with laughter in the midst of our graduation because of her comments about the sleepers. A number of professors rubbed the bridge of their noses during the ceremony, the way one does when pushed nearly past all bearing by some sort of mind-numbingly unpleasant situation. One of my favorite professors looked as though his brain was simply melting out of his mouth, which was slightly agape, matching the expression of utter boredom on his face. So to the professors of my college, I salute you. You made graduation intensely more entertaining that it probably otherwise would’ve been.
When it actually came time to walk, I was in the second row. We stood up, moved to the steps to the stage, and then it was literally over almost before it happened. I handed the vice-president the card, he announced my name and that I was graduating Summa Cum Laude, I heard a roar of people cheering for me, made sure I didn’t trip or walk too fast, smiled until my cheeks hurt, and then I sat back down. And just like that, I was graduated. It was bizarre, especially compared to my high school graduation, which had between 550 and 600 graduates and took around three hours. The rest of graduation was pretty standard; they told us we were no longer students but graduates, and everyone cheered. Then, a really cool part, they announced the Outstanding Graduates from each division, and mine was first. The faculty had to all exit the auditorium before we could, so we were all smiling at them as they went down the middle aisle. I was in the second seat, and so I was really close to them when they went by. One of the highlights of my graduation was when one of my English professors, Dr. Rees (who is the unanimously acknowledged badass of the English department), saw me, and then leaned over seats and past Paige to give me a hug. She said something encouraging but I basically didn’t hear it because I was so overwhelmed with how awesome it was that she was hugging me. Then my senior seminar professor, Dr. Simpson, who is pretty much the coolest dude around and was right behind Dr. Rees, saw me and said “You better just stay there” and I got another hug.
Almost before I knew it, we were walking out. I looked for my family everywhere but never saw them in the auditorium; I met them outside. A confusing whirlwind of pictures and hugging ensued. I had so many friends and so much of my family come out to my graduation, it was simply amazing. I felt so loved and blessed from all their support and the wonderful gifts they got me. We went to a reception, and I got a hug and chatted with one of my other English professors, Dr. Rodgers. She told me that I had to call her and Dr. Rees by their first names. I told her that I could not do it. Then I ate cookies, took some more pictures, and it was over.
Just like that. Seventeen years of my life. The main purpose I strove for during the majority of my time on this planet, and suddenly, it was accomplished. Done with. I graduated college.
I guess I never realized just how much school has dominated my life. In school, I always worked hard to get good grades so I could get a scholarship to college.  I feel like I’ve often been defined by school, because I was typically one of the kids who made better grades consistently, and people tend to catch on and classify you by that. Any time we had to fill out things or do writing assignments where we talked about where we saw ourselves in the future, my answer was always, without fail, getting a scholarship to go to college. It was weird enough when I actually accomplished that, but it was lost when I thought of the years of college I had to actually get through. But now they’re gotten through.
I know graduating college is a relatively common experience. I know maybe it seems like I’m making a really, really big deal out of it. But Saturday, I had to move out of my apartment for the last time. We rushed frantically to get everything packed up and loaded by our 2pm checkout deadline. My car was stuffed; my dad had brought home a bunch of stuff earlier in the week, and my mom’s car even had a pretty large load of stuff in it. All the accumulation of four years of college, kicked out of my apartment and stuffed into three cars. The reason that this feels like such a big deal to me, I guess, is because I feel exactly like my stuff. There’s no place for me anymore at school, and now there’s all this stuff that needs a place back at my house that we’re going to have to try to find. I need a place, too, and I’m really feeling the fact that I don’t fit anymore where I’ve always fit. I’m especially scared by the fact that I have to try and find a new place to fit. I spent most of last night scouring the internet for jobs, and I came up with NOTHING. Nothing that sounds even remotely palatable to me. I simply feel lost. One of the aspects about the institution of school that I never appreciated was that it gives you something to do. It gives you  a clear, predetermined next step. I’m beginning to completely understand why some people just decide to go to graduate school- it’s like a bonus level, like Super Mario Brothers when you go down the little pipe and you just run around punching things and getting coins (from what I’ve heard, this is a similar experience to graduate school, except you spend your coins just as fast as you get them).  But I’ve always known that graduate school was not my cup of tea. I recognize that it’s time to do something else with my life, the problem just is that I don’t know what.
So this leads me to a very important question… would anyone be interested in paying me to sit at home and blog?

Stin iyia sas,
Sara

PS I used the Greek phrase for cheers, because as of now, my future is all Greek to me. Also, I wrote a post over my graduation outfit over on my bargain fashion blog, so please check that out if you’d like. Now I am going to spam you with pictures of my graduation. Enjoy:

Myself in full regalia, looking like a rainbow threw up upon me.

Myself in full regalia, looking like a rainbow threw up upon me.

My honorary sister, Kasey and I.

My honorary sister, Kasey, and I.

Myself and two of my foreign guy friends, Joel and Richie.

Myself and two of my foreign friends, Joel and Richie.

My best friend Skye... who is approximately a foot taller than me.

My best friend Skye… who is approximately a foot taller than me.

Myself and two of my former roommates, plus my dear friend Stephanie, who let me be a bridesmaid at her wedding!

Myself and two of my former roommates Becka and Katelyn, plus my dear friend Stephanie, who let me be a bridesmaid at her wedding!

My favorite picture of the night. My sister, my dad, me, my mom, and my nana.

My favorite picture of the night. My sister, my dad, me, my mom, and my nana.

Me and my Boo baby. I've had him since about first grade, so this picture was pretty special.

Me and my Boo baby. I’ve had him since about first grade, so this picture was pretty special.

Crazy Finn cat and I.

Crazy Finn cat and I.

The best card ever- it was a cat playing a piano.

The best card ever- it was a cat playing a piano.

The Pitfalls of a Mind On Spring Break

Ahhh, Spring Break. The perfect time for mysteriously disappeared bloggers to return to their sacred work (which they have been shamefully neglecting in favor of their other blog). For me, 10 days of total freedom to simply lounge about, stay up all night reading romance novels, nap an outrageous amount, write a 20 page rough draft…. wait. What did I just say?
Ah right. I forgot. Spring Break is most assuredly NOT about breaking. Instead, it is an excuse for your professors to give you as much homework as possible with the justification that you aren’t going to be doing anything else! Oh, silly professors. That’s supposed to be the point.
So thus you find me, contemplating the enormous mountain of my 20 page Senior Seminar rough draft that I must somehow overcome. I have exactly two pages done so far, and a thesis I am struggling to fully, forcefully bring to life. I’ve also just finished a book over Camus’s life (Elements of a Life by Robert Zaretsky, it’s absolutely phenomenal if you have any interest on Camus) that is making it both much more difficult and yet much easier to plan my paper. It’s probably the most difficult paper I will ever write, because the subject has become so important to me. Camus has changed my life this school year, and I’m grateful to him. It’s been a good change, amidst a welter of confusing, frightening, startling changes. Even more startling is the thought that this is the last essay I shall ever have to write. My academic years are drawing to a rapid, terrifying close. When I return from Spring Break, I will have exactly three weeks left of my academic life. This thought is nearly paralyzing; how can I possibly do everything that needs to be done in three weeks? And I don’t mean simply the tests, or even the paper, I am going to be scrambling to master. I mean, how will I possibly cram all the memories I need to cram into those three weeks to last me the rest of my life? I am contemplating not napping during those three weeks. Well, okay, let’s be real, I’m still going to nap, but at least trying to limit it to only one or two a week. I just know there’s so much I should be doing, but even worse than the panic is the feeling that I don’t even know what those things are. Surely there is a list somewhere that ensures that, somewhere down the road, years in the future,  I don’t stumble across a glaring lack of things I should have done while in college?
I feel like I’ve accomplished shockingly little. This could be because I’ve been so immersed in Camus lately, an extremely active and outspoken man, prolific with his writings. Camus, naturally, kept a journal. I’ve always had this secret terror that, since I never could be bothered to keep a journal, it meant I was not a real writer. I mean, in middle school, I wanted to be an actress. I came very late to my love of writing; at least, the idea of my own writing. I have always loved reading and the written word; in middle school I finished in the Top Ten in the Reader’s Digest Vocabulary competition of Oklahoma (I was the first ignominious one of the top ten to be out, defeated by two similarly nuanced possible definitions of “augment,” a word I will bitterly never misuse again). I discovered in 6th grade, quite by accident during an assignment, a great love of poetry. But when it came to me actually writing, it somehow just took forever to click.
I remember the exact moment it hit me, in the manner of things that are only glaringly obvious after you realize them. I think it was around 8th grade, and I was reading yet another romance novel. And there, in the back, innocuously tucked away amidst the advertisements for other books I’d already read, was a single page that said something along the lines of “Do you love romance? Have you ever considered writing a novel yourself? Check out so-and-so publishing company’s website to learn more!”
That sounds oddly specific, but that wasn’t what it said. But it was something along those lines. Even now I’m struck by the oddity of it; I had never before seen such a thing and have never seen one since in a romance novel. And I have read many, many romances. I remember thinking, why don’t I just do that? I had been essentially training without realizing it for just such a task. There were few things I knew better than a romance novel, and I have an overwhelming hoard of knowledge specific to England during the Regency period. Oftentimes I had thought before, while reading some horribly written novel, that I could do a better job. But somehow that never set the idea off in my head. I imagine that at some point or another, perhaps soon after, perhaps much farther down the road, but at some point I probably would have finally come to the conclusion. But, call me fanciful, it still seems a little like fate that I saw that ad, as if it’d been tucked away there just for me. This is how I reassure myself when I read about people like Camus faithfully keeping a journal full of important, transcendent, insightful thoughts. Perhaps great writers don’t always start out with the ambition to be so.
But, as writers (good and bad) probably tend to do, I have digressed. I was speaking of college and the lack I’ve felt in myself throughout. I used to prolifically write poetry, but in college I seem to have lost the knack. I’ve started numerous novels but never finished one (I am not counting the very short, very atrocious book I clumsily wrote in 8th grade(?) entitled “My Book,” wherein I simply transferred myself and my best friends and family into Regency England and made us all members of the aristocracy). But I have two novels that I have been finally, actually working towards. One is, naturally, a romance set in 19th century England. The other is a retelling of The Princess and the Pea. That’s something else I have an intense interest in. I adore legends, myths, and fairy tales, and some of my favorite books I’ve ever read have been retellings of them. It seemed only natural, after realizing I should write romance novels, that I come to the realization that I could write other things as well. When I was younger I read voraciously of fantasy fiction, and that influenced me greatly as well. I always dreamed of finishing a novel before college, publishing it, and it magically becoming wildly popular a la Harry Potter, and never having to worry about finding a job. I’ve accepted, sadly, that this won’t be the case. I underachieved a little on my dreams.
But this week, I discovered something that I will have when I graduate that I can be very proud of. Each year for the two divisions of the college, teachers nominate a group of seniors. From that initial list, they whittle it down to one person per each division who receives a Distinguished Graduate award. I found out on Wednesday that I was selected as the Distinguished Graduate for the Division of Arts and Humanities. I feel unbelievably honored to receive this award; I won out against some brilliant, dedicated, and involved students. So I’m going to take this honor, this faith in me that all the teachers who argued for me to win this award tacitly bestowed, and I’m going to try and conquer a little of this panic, a little of this fear, this sudden welling of uncertainty about my ability and my purpose and my future, and believe in myself.
So, with that uplifting thought, I am going to tackle that 20 page rough raft. And studying for the three tests I have the week we come back from Spring Break. And trying to figure out what important things I need to pack into those last three desperate, bittersweet weeks.
Well, right after we get back from Louisiana on Wednesday. Leaving tomorrow morning, and I can’t read/write in the car without getting sick. So that means I’ll have hours to nap on the way down there, guilt free. So suck it, Spring Break haterssss! I WILL nap for outrageous amounts of time… at least for one day.

Leka nosht,
Sara

PS I went with Bulgarian today, because I’ve had people from Bulgaria totally looking at my blogs and how cool is that?! One of my favorite soccer players, Dimitar Berbatov, is from Bulgaria. So whenever I see that people from Bulgaria have looked at one of my blogs, I can pretend that maybe, just maybe, in some bewildering, magical world, maybe famous soccer players look at random blogs from 21 year olds in Oklahoma. “Leka nosht” means “good night” in Bulgarian, or at least according to this page. And I will now leave you with a picture of me from Thursday, when I picked up my cap and gown:

cap and gown
And shout out to my Tottenham Hotspurs, who I’m repping in the background!

TV Romances Suck Lately, and My Cat Has a Celebrity Twin on Glee

Woe is me, Dear Readers.
TV romances have really been letting me down lately. I have chosen to pretend that Glee ended on the episode before the last season finale, because I cannot accept that Finn and Rachel aren’t together. That was literally the only thing I asked of that show. I accepted shenanigan after shenanigan (including the shameful neglect of Rory, the character played by the love of my life, Damian McGinty), suffered heartbreak, and watched many episodes in pain because of how disappointed I was with the way the storyline was going. But I still faithfully watched, every week, knowing that eventually Finn and Rachel would work out their differences and live happily every after with each other, because they are clearly meant for each other. I simply could not accept in my mind what came to pass, and I refuse to watch the travesty of whatever Glee is now. In my mind, Glee ended with them winning nationals, with their lives before them, and knowing Finn and Rachel would be facing whatever came together, making each other better.
Then, you have The Office. I would argue that Jim and Pam are one of the greatest, most sweet TV romances of all time. And now suddenly, this is being threatened by a (admittedly hot) soundman. COME ON, OFFICE. You spend how many seasons making everyone fall in love with Jim because he so clearly is in love with Pam, and then you throw this nonsense at us?! Uh uh. I’m not buying it. SO JUST STOP.
As for Downton Abbey, which I mentioned my love for, I recently accidentally came upon an enormous spoiler for all of Season 3 (I’ve only watched Season 1). If you keep up with it, then you know what revelations I was absolutely blind-sided by. My favorite heroine on that show? Sybil, partly because of her fabulous romance with the hot Irish chauffeur, Branson. My favorite hero? Matthew (obviously). I rooted for him and Mary to be together since they first met. Come to think of it, I said the same thing about Sybil and Branson. So much promise in Season 1 of glorious romance… and then I hear about Season 3. If I’d been watching Downton regularly, I would have been destroyed. I could never have watched TV again; I could’ve never trusted another show. I have accepted I can never watch Downton again.
It’s a sad day when my favorite TV romance is on The Middle, between Sue, an incredibly awkward sophomore in high school, and her brother’s friend, a dumb but loveable senior. It’s painfully awkward, but ridiculously sweet. I actually really like Sue, and she kind of reminds me of Edith from Downton Abbey, who I also admittedly like (though I can never watch her again). In fact, I kind of feel like Sue is a kindred spirit, because she had this conversation with her brother, Axl, on the Valentine’s episode of The Middle (I’m really disappointed because I so wanted to find this as a gif but apparently no one has made one of it yet and I emphatically don’t know how, so I apologize)-

Axl: She’s at a wedding…something you’ll never be in. I suggest buying a wacky hat and starting your cat collection now.
Sue: That’s not even an insult. I love cats!

Well said, Sue. Well said. Speaking of middles, today is actually my half birthday. I know that sounds like a silly thing to notice, but it’s just crazy to me that I’ve already been 21 for six months. I’m already halfway to 22. That’s just bewildering. Tuesday also happened to mark the two months until graduation point. I will graduate college in less than two months now. It seems impossible. I feel like if you’re American, for your whole life, as you’re growing up, there’s just certain events you daydream about and imagine, like turning 16 and getting your license, and  then graduating high school and finally being 18. And then, far off in the hazy future, you wonder what it will be like to be 21 and able to drink, and somewhere even more removed, you think of graduating college and a final cessation of school…. forever (unless you’re one of those crazy schmucks who goes to graduate school, of course [that was a joke]). But, for me at least, the thought of actually being done with school was so far away as to be impossible, truthfully. Yet here I am, almost to that very point… and it still seems unfathomable. I simply can’t picture a life where I’m not expected to be in school, much less get a job. I was actually job-hunting today, googling jobs in Oklahoma for English degrees. Nothing was coming up. The top results were national articles optimistically reassuring the reader that jobs for English majors really do exist! Unfortunately, they don’t seem too plentiful near where I live. It’s somewhat disheartening. To cheer myself up, I started thinking about things I might want when my full birthday rolls around, and my sister made an excellent suggestion- The CatGenie. It’s a self-flushing, self-cleaning litterbox. I feel like it’s the Holy Grail for Crazy Cat Ladies. Changing litterboxes is certainly one of the biggest drawbacks about owning a cat for me. I dream of a future filled with both cats and CatGenies; a blissful, furry, stink-free world. I think Sue would approve.
In other TV ramblings, I just watched the season finale of the show Gold Rush (which sucked). I never cared even the slightest bit about that show, but my dad and sister LOVE it. The thing that finally suckered me in was hearing about Parker Schnabel, a boy who took over running his grandfather’s goldmine when he was SIXTEEN. I was blown away by this; how many sixteen year old boys do you know that would be willing to take on that kind of responsibility?! He’s eighteen now, and I have to admit that I have a huge crush on him. I am beyond impressed with his maturity and intelligence, and it doesn’t hurt that he’s absolutely adorable and clearly loves his grandpa. I try to ignore the fact that this is a cougar crush, which is lamentable. Also lamentable is that it takes a guy who starts running a goldmine at sixteen to impress me, because they’re pretty scarce on the ground, especially in Oklahoma. Even I might be able to acknowledge that standards like those might be a touch too high.
For those of you who have never watched any of the shows I’ve been talking about, or only a couple of them, I apologize fervently. This post has probably been pretty useless so far for you.  I will now share something that doesn’t require you to have watched a TV show regularly, and instead requires only that you watch a two minute video. Hopefully this video will make up for those of you unfamiliar with the show I’ve been rambling about, so reading this doesn’t feel like a complete waste of time. To preface, I have to tell you that for some reason, I find goats to be just inherently hilarious. Just looking at a goat makes me giggle a little. Last year, one of my friends showed me a 7 second video of a goat screaming like a man. I thought it was honestly the funniest thing I’d ever seen. Then, recently, I discovered this video and realized I had been completely wrong. It’s just a compilation of goats screaming like humans (some of them are actually sheep, but I find goats funnier so I choose to ignore that they are sheep). You may be hesitant and think this sounds ridiculous, but do yourself a favor and watch it. It is the funniest thing I’ve ever seen. I can’t even watch the video if I have to wait for it to load, because I start laughing so hard I don’t even end up being able to see it through the tears. I don’t know if I actually have even seen every actual second of the video; I think there’s still parts I can’t stop laughing long enough to watch.

Well, I feel like this has been one of the most random posts I’ve ever done, so sorry about that. But I’ll share a fun fact to try and loosely tie everything together. I started this post talking about Glee, and I’ll end it that way, like a bizarre, drunken sort of thesis.
Some trivia from my life: my cat, Finn, who I’ve mentioned before, is actually, honest-to-god, named after Finn from Glee. To understand why, you need to see what Finn (aka the actor, Cory Monteith) looks like when he smiles. So for those of you who aren’t familiar with it, observe:

finn (3)

Look at that charming, ridiculously adorable half smile!! I totally fell in love with Finn while watching Glee, largely because of that smile. I have to admit that I really, really love me a crooked, little half-smile (possibly because heroes in novels often have them). But Finn provides a perfect example of one in real-life, human form.
Enter my cat here, who was named Franklin when we adopted him. My mom strongly objected to the name, so we were left trying to find one we could all agree on. It’s not always visible in pictures of him, but Finn (the cat) has a serious snaggletooth. It’s one of the things that made me fall in love with him, too, when I first saw him at Petsmart. It’s very visible in this picture:

2011-12-03_01-37-28_669
It makes for some hilarious pictures of this cat, I tell you, but you’re probably not seeing what this has to do with Finn Hudson’s smile since, you know, he doesn’t have a snaggletooth. But take a look at this picture of Finn (the cat, again):

2011-12-28_15-34-52_376
That’s right, you guys. My cat has a half-smile. It’s pretty much ridiculously adorable. His snagtooth makes his mouth uneven, then he has that tannish patch right above the snaggletooth that makes his mouth look even more uneven, resulting in a charming half-smile, reminiscent of Finn Hudson from Glee. No, but seriously. Compare them side by side:

finn vs finn
You see it, right?! I mean, surely you have to. Their smiles ARE THE SAME. They even hook upwards on the same side, guys. My cat is twins with Finn Hudson. Recognizing this even without helpful side by side comparisons, I pitched the idea of naming the cat Finn to my family, who thought it was hilarious and agreed. And now every time I call my cat’s name, I’m reminded how much TV romance has been determinedly awful lately. Sue from The Middle, I know you love cats, too, but please take pity and go with loving a guy as well- you don’t know how much depends on you. The future of my TV watching may be at stake.

gn21834_1

 

 

Sara

PS My goodbye for today is a cartouche that says “Desperately” in Egyptian hieroglyphics, or at least according to this hieroglyphic generator I used. I chose hieroglyphics because they come, obviously, from ancient Egypt, a country that worshiped cats as divine and had their own cat god. I like to think they would’ve appreciated a CatGenie as much as I would.

A Spoiler Alert to Freshmen: You Know Nothing, and Children Abuse Slides

Dear Readers.
There are many things in my life that I question myself about. I go through the world, probably 68% of the time, pretty much just wingin’ it and hoping the way I think stuff will go in my head is actually how it’s going to translate into real life. As a normal human being who is completely and disappointingly lacking in superhero-esque or TV character-like powers of foresight, I don’t know that when I make a decision that it’s going to bear itself out as the correct one. My inclinations, sadly, can be incorrect and go decidedly awry.
And then there are things that I one hundred percent for sure know are true.
Two of these things came to my attention rather forcefully today. The first involves college. I can remember like it was yesterday my freshman year of college; arriving at school all bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, on the verge of turning EIGHTEEN and pretty much being sure that I was a responsible, mature woman now who just had her life totally together.
It pains me now to think of that degree of intense, pathetic, sweet naivete. I thought I knew things when I started college; now I’m convinced college’s main lesson is to teach you that you don’t know anything. One of my classes where I feel the sting of this lesson keenly is in Dr. Crow’s Political Geography of the Modern World, every Tuesday and Thursday from 12 to 1:25pm. Dr. Crow is completely insane, and naturally one of the most beloved teachers on campus, including by me. You just honestly never know what’s going to come out of his mouth. From a man I am paying to teach me things, this is a quality I can respect; I like the surprising relevance and/or usefulness of whatever he’s telling us. What  I do not like about that class is that I arrive to it early. I get out of my first class at 11ish on Tuesday and Thursday; I eat lunch, and since it does not take me an hour to do it, I usually just stroll on over to class around fifteen minutes early.
Now, my college is a liberal arts college. We attract, how should I put this, interesting people. But hey, to each their own and all that, I tend to enjoy that diversity. And then, there are the times when I am subjected to soliloquies 
by kids in trench coats and round polarized glasses over the major mistakes Hitler made that caused his defeat. He actually stood up from his seat at the front of the class and gave a little mini-lecture to the approximately four of us that were there early. This guy’s voice was admiring of Hitler, I kid you not, and he sounded almost disappointed in the man, like he couldn’t quite believe someone whose mental acumen he so admired could’ve  made such fatal mistakes. Another legacy I’ve taken from college is a much deeper and even more horrifying understanding of the Holocaust, so I can’t exactly say that I was feeling too receptive to his tone. But it wasn’t just a sense of disappointment in Hitler that I felt a touch annoyed by; the kid was clearly just trying to show off his extensive World War II knowledge and prove that he was smarter than Hitler and never would’ve made such silly mistakes. I was most appreciative when one of the other people being subjected to this interrupted to say bluntly, “It’s easy to say that in hindsight.” The kid seemed completely stymied by this brilliant logic, and thankfully Dr. Crow came in almost immediately after so I didn’t really have to hear what he would’ve countered with. That was last week.
Today, Dr. Crow was on an especially crazy roll (we touched on mass serial killers at parent teacher conferences all the way to  how the world was going to turn into the plot of Mad Max), but he was saying some important and viable stuff. Of course, there’s the kid who sits in the corner who generally has an obnoxious comment to chime in with once or twice during class (there’s ALWAYS one), but he too was on a roll today. There seemed to be almost the shimmer of a heat wave in the corner he sits in today from the heat of the hostile stares directed at him. At one point during the class, he somehow managed to mention how he was a freshman taking an upper level class, and I actually said out loud to the girl in front of me, “Oh, of course he’s a freshman.”
So this is the first thing I realized today. T
he way you know for certain it’s time for you to graduate college is when you start disdainfully and grumpily talking smack under your breath about the stupid people in your class and tossing the word “freshman” around like a slur, and you subsequently feel triumphant when your assessment of them is proved right. Hitler guy is also a freshman, you might be shocked to hear. It makes me feel like some crotchety old woman who just wants to crush all that determined but often misguided confidence that seems to linger, aura-like, around underclassmen. It’s not fair, really, because there are some upperclassmen that I should probably never be left alone with, and there are equally delightful underclassmen. But as a senior in college, I know  that I actually don’t know anything, and I just want to yell out my bitter disillusionment in the form of  sayings like “You’re an idiot” and “You don’t know anything.”
This actually makes college sound very pointless and disheartening, and I didn’t have that intent at all. College is lovely; it’s very freeing realizing I don’t really know much. I mean, it’s a huge responsibility to have all the answers; now, as I’m about to graduate college, I have the whole world to go into and figure things out. So, shameless endorsement of the day, go to college because education is the bulwark of civilization, and if Dr. Crow is to be believed we need to really work on keeping up the whole civilization thing so Mel Gibson doesn’t end up the leader(?) of the world (I’ve never actually seen Mad Max).
And education leads me into my second realization of the day. As many students must, I had to get a job while I was in high school and continue it into college. Aside from approximately two years overall working in restaurants (an experience that will convince you, if nothing else, that getting an education is worth it), I have spent the majority of my laboring years working at daycares. For many people this is a horrifying prospect, but I love kids and actually enjoy (usually) my job. I’ve been working in daycare going on four years now, and it’s one of the things I’m most grateful for. Honestly, I don’t know if there’s anything else in my life that has matured me as quickly as being responsible for numerous, small, astonishingly foolish lives (it’s almost reminiscent of how I feel around some freshmen). You get it together pretty quick if you want to be a successful daycare worker. Now, one of my responsibilities at various instances through out my daycare career has been to monitor kids while they play on the playground. For instance, playgrounds tend to be accompanied by slides. One of my greatest fights as a teacher is to make sure children go down a slide properly. If you’ve never worked with kids, this seems rather silly, doesn’t it?  I mean, it’s pretty simple. You walk up the stairs, you go down the slide. Ah, but if you think this, you have clearly never worked with children.
Because kids seem to love nothing better than to climb up the slide and even, at times, to try and slide down stairs. I don’t understand it, but it is undeniable. It happens constantly. Unfortunately for me, this is, for some reason, one of my greatest pet peeves. Perhaps it’s because the function of a slide should be so incredibly simple: up stairs, down slide. And yet, no matter how many times you get onto them, they will do it WRONG over and over and over again. It makes me slightly crazy.
So, my great second realization of the day? I was taking a nap, as I do whenever humanly possible, and I actually had a nightmare (yes, a nightmare, as in I was horrified and upset during and felt very stressed out when I woke up) about a giant play structure, absolutely FILLED with slides, and all of the kids were going the wrong way on all of them. I was supposed to be monitoring this, but the kids just ignored me, and even said mean things, and I was powerless to stop them. When I woke up, I realized that I have been working in daycare for far, far too long.
These two realizations actually lead me to a third, almost overarching epiphany of the day: I may not have any idea what I’m going out into the world to do, I may be just blindly hoping that the plans I make for my future will somehow come out right, I may be shortly wingin’ it 100%.
But what I do know, for sure, is that it’s probably time for me to be done with college.

Kwaheri,
Sara

PS Okay, so I feel stupid now because I said last time that I was going to say goodbye in Kenyan, but that’s not even a language. As the Google taught my ignorant self, the national languages of Kenya are English and Swahili. My closing for today is the Swahili word for goodbye.

 

 

And So It Begins

Heyyyy errybody.

naps

So. I thought I’d just start off straightforward with you all. I really, really, really like to sleep. Honestly, I’m afraid I’m never going to amount to anything but sleepy. It also, at times, affects my productivity. And that’s part of the reason I took so long to write my first post on here.
The second reason is, I couldn’t think of the right thing to say. This is my very first blog post; it seems like it should be something really momentous to properly celebrate the occasion. Perhaps it’s from numerous English classes and four years of being an English major. I was always taught that one of the most important things that you can do as a writer is to create a gripping, enthralling hook at the beginning of whatever you’re writing to draw people in and hold their attention.
I have been distressingly hook-less the past few days.
But eventually (tonight) I just decided I had to go for it. I’m terrifyingly nervous, for some reason, so much so that I don’t want to post this. But you have to start somewhere, and I’m going to start with just telling you a little about myself, and why I’ve decided to start this blog.
I am a senior in my last semester of college, and I admittedly am in a bit of a daze over the fact. It seems impossible to me that in a few short months, April to be exact, I will be done with the main occupation of my time since I started pre-school at the age of three. I’m about to have to be an “adult.” I cannot express to you how woefully unprepared I feel for this. I have no idea what job I want, and I have no practical experience in my degree field. This is slightly distressing to me.
Knowing this, I also know that this year is going to be one of incredible change for me, and one of the most important transitional periods of my life. Considering I want to be a writer, it just made sense to me to write about it. I want to travel, I want to try new things, I want to do something that makes me happy. I’m hoping here is the place where I can record all of the things I will hopefully be accomplishing. I honestly don’t know yet what exactly I’m going to be saying in any given post, or how often I’ll want to write, but I do know I’m excited to do this. And I hope you all will be excited to share it with me.
I don’t have too much else to say that’s terribly exciting tonight. I’m getting sick, and it’s rather cold in Oklahoma currently. I have been watching videos and pinning pins on Pinterest, wrapped up in two blankets, since I got back from work at like 5:30 (it’s 11:05 now, in case you didn’t know). I feel slightly miserable and not at all like doing anything. That’s why it’s unfortunate that, alas, I have homework still. I’m minoring in Spanish, and it’s a lot of work, you guys. Oh, the woes of a college student. But I suppose that those won’t be mine to bemoan for much longer…. So. Strange. But for now, I will bid you all good night, for I have homework to listlessly attempt to do and a bed to get sleeping in. Hopefully I’ve got a little bit of a hook in your attention, and you’ll come around for my next post. In the meantime, feel free to check out my other blog that deals with bargain fashion. You know, if you’re into that kind of thing. You can also check out my permanent about me posts if you’re interested in learning a little more… about me. Imagine that.
For now, I have mildly sick person whining to do.

Buenas noches,
Sara