As you know, I was recently laid off from my long-time, dream-job, job. But it isn’t effective until January, so every day I put on my work lady pants and I go to the office and I work and I work and I smile and I turn in the spreadsheet and I wrap up all the details and I smile and I work. Occasionally I stay home in my bathrobe and watch internet TV but mostly I work and I smile.
Several of my co-workers have commented on how graceful and productive I have remained despite having been kicked in the emotional groin, and they ask me how I do it.
I wish I could say “my faith” or “my belief that everything happens for a reason”, or even “my excellent upbringing”.
But really it’s that TV show “The Voice”.
Yes, I watch it. And I love it. And every week the show features these beautiful young creatures who have left it all behind to give singing a shot, and they’ve sung their hearts out on stage and told the whole world how their father’s always wanted them to be an accountant but they chose singing instead or how their mothers work three jobs just so that they could have singing lessons or how singing literally saved their lives from some sad fatal disease. And after all that, the beautiful young creatures have to stand up on the stage and bite their lips and twist their hands and cast their eyes downward and wait to hear if America has voted to let them stay.
And then BOOM. They get voted off the show. IN FRONT OF ALL OF AMERICA. AND CHRISTINA AGUILERA.
And then the host asks if they have any last words. Sometimes they cry or worse, get angry.
But a lot of the times they just say how grateful they are for the experience. They say how this isn’t the end of the road for them. They are gonna keep singing! They say “Thank you America!”
That’s how I learned to be grateful in the face of defeat. I’ve been voted off the proverbial work island, but when I leave, I want people to think “That girl is one classy broad. She’s gonna be just fine.”
Also helpful, are all my years playing as a child on really terrible soccer teams. We mostly always lost, but no matter what, win or lose, our coach always made us walk over to the other team, shake hands with each of our competitors and say “Good game, good game.” Even when I got pelted in the face with direct kick I still had to say “good game.”
At work, most days lately I feel like this on the inside:
But I just think of Christina Aguilera and mutter “good game, good game” to myself and I look like a graceful swan on the outside.
Sometimes people will do a google search for a particular word and it will bring them to my blog.
Usually the word they are searching for is “quirky”, “eating in the bathtub”, “cat lady”, etc. You get the point.
Behind the scenes, I can tell which search terms are most popular. Supposedly, I can leverage these google searches to see what is bringing traffic and use it to get more readers for my blog.
Yesterday someone searched google for “catachresis example in tom robbins’ still life with woodpecker” and it brought them to my blog.
I am certain they were grossly disappointed and did not find what they were looking for among my love letters to Tina Fey, wine, neuroses, and my Grandpa. For this, I am sorry.
I don’t even know what “catachresis example in tom robbins’ still life with woodpecker” means, but I definitely want to have dinner with the person that searched for it.
And I hope they found what they were looking for.
PS: Another popular google search that brings people to my blog is “does a dead mouse smell like sour milk?”. Next time I’m feeling bad about myself, I think I’ll curl up with a nice mug of hot tea and remind myself that even though I am an unemployed cat lady, I do have the market cornered on inquiries about sour milk and dead mice. Aces.
I just put a PM Dawn song on the mix CD I am making. It’s official; I had too much wine for dinner.
Forgive me for recommending a Taylor Swift song and promise that you will listen to this song immediately.
The Civil Wars are one of my favorite new-to-me bands.
I promise you, we’ll all be safe and sound.
When I was 22 I graduated college and moved to Mexico without a “plan”. Someday, I hope to write you more about this.
In Mexico, I met up with a girlfriend and made our way to Rio de Janeiro where my one dream was to samba. And at the samba club, I met a nice young man who danced with me, and made me laugh, and then when the dance club closed, asked if we wanted to see the city of Rio at night.
Did we want to get in a car with a guy we don’t know, in a city we don’t know, in the middle of the night after we’ve been drinking?
OF COURSE WE DID!
So we got in his car, and drove around Rio in the middle of the night, and saw the lights of Sugar Loaf Mountain, and smelled the tropical night air, and heard stories about the city that only a true Carioca (native of Rio) can tell. And we had the time of our lives.
And then he dropped us off at home AND DIDN’T KILL US.
What? He didn’t kill you, you ask? Why would someone drive strangers around in the middle of the night in one of the most dangerous cities if they didn’t want to kill you? I can’t even be bothered to take out the trash. That’s crazy.
I have no idea, why he did such a nice thing. But he did.
I am notorious for not getting killed.
The other day someone texted me from a phone number I didn’t recognize, and we had that awkward chat where only one of us knows who the other is talking to. And then the anonymous person on the other end of the line said they wanted to drop something off at my house, could I please give them my address?
Could I give an anonymous person my address and tell them when I would, and would not be home?
OF COURSE I CAN!
And guess what? The stranger-person-friend-coworker on the other line DIDN’T KILL ME!
They dropped off a pretty dress that reminded them of me, with a card with nice words, and it was actually a good old friend who I had lost touch with but still thinks of me.
It’s probably not the safest life philosophy.
But assuming people don’t want to kill you, and that instead, they want to help you and love you and show you beautiful things has only given me the best and most amazing life experiences.
I’ve stayed with a lady taxi driver in a strange city only to become part of her family, I’ve seen sunrises, and secret caves, and whales with babies, and eaten homemade bake goods, and ridden very sketchy horses up even sketchier mountain passes to see beautiful butterflies, and eaten cakes that smelled suspiciously of booze on trains with hungarian women, and sang national anthems with Slovenians in kitchens, and bought a house that was not yet quite perfect but would soon be totally perfect, all because I saw the good in people and assumed the best.
Unfortunately I’ve also applied this Life Philosophy of mine to tequila. But when you assume the best about Jose Cuervo, he only leaves you with a massive hangover, every.single.time.
But that’s another story entirely.