Thursday, November 17, 2005

I cannot attempt to offer up a reason why it has been so long since I have posted. I have fought the good fight with finding a job, and have met some interesting people along the way. Considering the fact that my future appears to be intact, and I have a pretty full social calendar these days, I cannot for the life of me figure out why I am so contemplative regarding my past.

I spend alot of time with these Sudanese guys whom I have been trying to help for various reasons, and they tell me alot about their pasts - tinged with warfare, lost parents, and animal attacks. It seems to indicate perhaps my past is less traumatic than I make it out to be. My friend Thichiot has been through hell, and yet he is optimistic and happy.

I do cry less these days, at least about my own welfare. My life is pretty good - I have a decent job, things with D.J. are good, I have friends, etc. I guess meeting people who have to have their fingers amputated because of frostbite working on fishing boats in Alaska will make one's own problems seem pretty miniscule by comparison.

Monday, July 18, 2005

on exes and ends

I have been in Seattle for six weeks now. I have a house to live in, but no job...yet. I could make myself insane with worry on that one issue, but I am trying to just focus on my other big concern right now, studing for the bar exam. It is next week.

Last week I had dinner with two of my old roommates from the Sunshine House days in Provo. One of these old roommates just moved to Seattle from Las Vegas. It just so happened that while she lived in Las Vegas, she worked at J. Crew and on occasion, when home during law school breaks from Harvard, an ex-boyfriend who is now married would ask how I was doing. That is something incredibly small, but it just made my day. It isn't because I still have feelings for this person, but rather, I just thought it to be an extremely kind gesture. It is remarkable to think that this person that I used to care so much about at least in my view of things, wanted to make sure that I am well and happy. It is proof of his good manners and politeness, but after all of these years, it made me happy because it was evidence that he really did care about me at some point in time. That is evidence that is useful, when these days I have been feeling so utterly forgettable.

Then of course, there is the marriage of another ex-boyfriend of mine and his pending graduate school days at Harvard. Unfortunately, for him, I do not have such kind things to say, in part because he lacks all of the polite social graces of the previous ex-boyfriend.

But for the good-ex, I want to tell him that aside from my currently unemployed state, I am doing well. I am in a beautiful place. I have good friends. And I have someone in my life now who is right for me and who treats me very well (for my birthday - Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and great food). So I am doing better than fine. I am happy.

Friday, June 03, 2005

free samples

Today I compared my life to the life of the sample man at Chic-Fil-A. He looked so content, offering up bitesized samples of the new Chic-Fil-A breakfast sandwiches. Older and clearly retired from some more labor intensive job, for a moment I was completely jealous of him. Not only was he friendly and smiling, but he clearly had the worst part of life behind him, and was enjoying his retirement, playing with the kids and giving out free chicken. I wished I was him, and that I didn't have worries like trying to find a new job and trying to give the large bulk of my life that I most likely have ahead of me (if I live to the average life expectancy) worth and meaning.

Of course, I could be reading things all wrong. He could be a lonely widower so miserable spending his retirement years at home that he looks to chicken for solace and a sense of belonging. But I don't think it is that way.

Being in Florida, trying to study for the Washington Bar Exam, I can't help but feel like I have regressed a bit. Isn't this exactly where I was two years ago, except it was the New York Bar Exam? Except then I guess I at least had a job waiting for me after the bar exam, so perhaps I wasn't quite so pathetic.

In spite of these things, ever since I left the Bronx Family Court last week, I have been feeling entirely more content and have been sleeping much easier. At least some huge weight has been lifted.

Pictures below: Last Day in the Bronx Family Court






Top - Me and Erik; Me and Heather
Bottom - Ed, Nicole, Melissa, and Sarah; Me and Ed

Thursday, March 24, 2005

the little things

the man always on my train ride home from work, walking through the cars, selling batteries.

the corner of my block where there always is a homeless man sitting over the gutter, drinking a two liter of pepsi. it is never the same man, but it is always a two liter of pepsi.

the little girl who cried in my office yesterday at 5pm because she felt guilty for having someone arrested.

these little things - these are the things that i don't know if i can resolve in new york city. these are the things that make me want to run away, but then make me want to stay.

but the big things are the reason why i have to go. the big things that should make up my life...
the 5:00 am crying sessions after saying goodbye - that must stop. i need to be happy.

in "The Secret Lives of Bees" May has a wailing wall where she stuffs papers carrying the weight of the world. i feel like i need that sometimes - a place to pay homage to the seeming injustice and sadness that consumes this place.

but when i am with him, i don't feel the weight of the world. i feel like i can take risks and succeed and that good might actually win out in the end.

Wednesday, March 16, 2005

go heels!

Unfortunately, I cannot be objective this year during March Madness. I know that it is going to be harmful to my bracket picks, because no matter how poorly North Carolina played during the ACC tournament, I have to have them winning it all. This year it could be feasible, that is, if they play up to their potential. So my brackets all depend on the success of my Tarheels. And I am quite nervous about their chances.

These past few weeks have been all about basketball, and that is not such a good thing. DJ and I do not like the same basketball teams, and so that is a problem, even though it is a silly arguing over something so insignificant. Why do sports engender such emotion?

Other than watching basketball, my life has been pretty routine. Today I had to deal with the fact that there were no East Side subways running. So, it took me a long time to get to work; the bus ride across town to catch a West side train was quite painful. Then I have to come to work and deal with the incompetence of the Department of Probation and how they single-handedly seem to screw up every case that I have going for me in court.

It is days like this when I can't wait to get out of this dirty, inefficient, crowded city.

Monday, February 28, 2005

"Why can't we just look the other way?"

The good news is that I am going to see Interpol on Wednesday night. That is exactly what I need, because it has been far too long since I have been to a good concert.
Lately, I just have forgotten myself too much. I have persisted in acting like I am someone that I am not. I am not meant for late night sessions at trendy New York bars, clubs, and lounges. I am not someone who can carry on with effortless, shallow conversation with people I barely know. I always forget these things. I try to fit in with these people with whom I have nothing in common. These people probably wouldn't know Bill Moyers from Tucker Carlson. These are people that assume the West Coast consists of Los Angeles.
I have been persisting in these shallow patterns in part because being myself has just made me too sad lately. There used to be a time when I would gladly spend a weekend at home writing and reading books about children in war. Now, all of it just seems to depress me too much, so I thought that going out and acting a fool would make me feel differently. It has just made me sort of numb.
Even if I have to go to the Interpol concert alone, at least it will be an outing that is like me. Their alienation is back to something I can relate to.

Friday, February 25, 2005

For Hugh

Hugh Nibley died. He was very old, but his words had so much relevance and meaning to me, I can't help but being somewhat sad. The way he wrote about things, well, he did alot for faith and understanding of my religious beliefs. I grateful for that.
The sad thing is that he died amid so much controversy because his daughter wrote a book, claiming that he sexually abused her. It isn't my place to determine the truth of that allegation, all of his other children have vehemently defended him. But what it has caused me to think about is sometimes the blame that individuals assign to others as a means of justifying their actions or why they chose to believe or not.
The easiest thing to do in the world is to blame other people for our decisions. What people should really say when they decide that they no longer want to be a part of an organized religion is say, I didn't believe that, because what it really comes down to is a lack of faith on an individual's part. That lack of faith may be affected by the actions of others, but it is a person's own choice to believe or not to believe. Blaming a 90 year old man who can't defend himself hardly seems like a valid exercise.
I have thought alot about my own reasons for doing or not doing what I have been taught is right in my religious cannon. Sometimes, I think it is easy to blame someone else for my lack of perfection. It isn't fair - the choices I make are my own. The wrongs that have been done to me are owned by the person that perpetrated those wrongs, not by me. We are defined not by what people do to us, but how we react to those things and how we act ourselves.
It gives me a moment to pause, because at times I have felt like my church isn't worth the sacrifice it requires. But then I realize, that the people I know who have unconditionally surrendered their will to do what they believe is right, according to my religion, are generally the happiest people I know. In contrast, the people I know that have said that the sacrifice is too difficult, and are therefore not pursuing religion anymore are generally not happy, but fault other people for their misery. Faulting other people doesn't make them any happier, it only results in them finding more fault in more people.
It doesn't work when all I want to be is beaming and radiant. It doesn't work when I believe what Nibley has written about the way that we approach Zion, the way that we become more Godlike ourselves.
I am by no means a model Latter-day Saint. I make mistakes all of the time, and I have my own struggles with doubt. However, something about the way Nibley wrote about scripture taught me that I too can work things out in my own mind at at the end of the day find a place to work out my own salvation.

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

no justice to be had

I don't just say that because this is a particularly wretched day in the Bronx Family Court. I mean, the sewage pipes in the ceiling did burst. Everyone has to walk around wearing nose clips. It is too foul even to adequately describe.
No, what I am referring to today is the shocking realization that my belief in some cosmic karma to balance things out may not be as immediate as I hoped. It turns out that sometimes people who treat other people badly and who walk all over others and who take advantage of them, well, sometimes they do get what they want. Sometimes they get to have the happy ending, while the people whom they took advantage of and utilized for their own gain are now working in offices that smell like shit.
Alright I am over it now.

Seattle was good. I think. There were some confusing moments. But I think a resolution is on the horizon.

Tuesday, February 15, 2005

guilt?

At least Bronx Family Court doesn't make me cry anymore. I just had a crappy day because two judges yelled at me. I am so sick of caring about what goes on in the confines of this building. The truth is, there is rarely justice inside of these walls.

So much for my youthful idealism.

I am far too young to be so cynical about so many things.

Here is something else I am trying to resolve - do I just create excess faults in other people so that I don't have to deal with my own foibles? Do I always assume the worst about others so I don't have time to look at how many issues I have?

All I want to do these days is eat sushi and read social gospel critics. I have loved reading William Sloane Coffin lately. Perhaps it is just because I am suffering from Bill Moyers withdrawl.

Oh why did you have to retire, Bill, why? If you were still around on Friday nights then perhaps I wouldn't engage in reckless behavior just to avoid sitting alone in my apartment. David Brancaccio is nice, but he is no replacement for you Bill! Why have you abandoned me in my deepest hour of need?

Monday, February 14, 2005

Saffron

I went to The Gates exhibit in Central Park on Saturday. On Sunday, I decided to walk home from church by way of the park as well. Those simple pieces of cloth swinging in the breeze - they were exactly what I needed. New York seemed like a more personable and beautiful place. Central Park actually seemed like the community commons that it was intended to be. I walked and watched and listened to my fellow New Yorkers enjoying the park in an entirely new way, knowing that in two weeks, it wouldn't be like this anymore. I hope that the memory of the exhibit will allow us all to see the park in a different way days, weeks, months, and years after the Gates come down.
The saffron gates reminded me of monks in Buddhist monastaries. That peacefulness and tranquility is something that I have needed in my life as of late. The colors gave me pause for moments of quiet meditation and ultimately led me to returning to some of my writing that I have put aside for too many years, from days when I used to be thoughtful. Those days certainly have seemed far removed as of late, because of so many hours I have invested in not thinking about much of anything.
Orange is a much better color than the annoying red of Valentines Day. Of course, who am I to talk - I am wearing a new pink shirt today that I purchased this weekend from Anthropologie. I must be stopped before I hurt someone.

Friday, February 11, 2005

Floating Holiday

So today was a floating holiday from work, meaning I could take today off, or if I chose to work today, then I could take any day off in the future and substitute it for today. I chose to work today, even though I did not get any sleep last night.

In between obsessions over Russian girls and Jewish boys this week, I read this article:
http://news.yahoo.com/news?tmpl=story&u=/nm/20050210/od_uk_nm/oukoe_economy_romance and became concerned with the fact that DJ told me he had hired someone who looked like Anna Kournakova (sp?), fearing the worst. It doesn't take much to upset me these days.

I should have stayed home and slept today. Last night, I was actually out too late on a work day. I went out with Erik and Ed. Ed had a particularly trying day yesterday so I am hoping that we at least managed to make him feel somewhat better.

Tuesday, February 08, 2005

If only...

Since I am always complaining about the cold, I should at least comment that it has been significantly warmer in the metro area the past few days. This weekend, the highs were in the 40s and it was sunny.

Otherwise, the family court is still making me crazy. Yesterday, I had a homicide detective in my office who was sharing with me the details of a homicide case that he was working on Friday when he was unable to come to court. It was so graphic and disturbing, it made things painfully clear that I picked the wrong profession for me.

Lately, I also have noted a significant problem in my life of being unable to digest regular food. I have no desire to eat vegetable or anything that might provide badly needed nutrients, but instead, I want to eat things like Lucky Charms or Cake Batter Ice Cream for dinner.

I saw the movie "In Good Company" again. Those nuanced jabs at corporate America are very appreciated considering I think that the whole working world is insane these days. I don't seem to know anyone who is content at their jobs these days. Well, I should rephrase that, no one who is currently employed in a traditional job that is. The happiest people I know are the ones that are out changing the world on their own terms on the opposite side of the world or the ones that have refused to surrender to practicality and are making a go of it in their own chosen art. I wish I was that brave.

Friday, January 28, 2005

"I've got you covered from behind."

So it turns out, I can be quite a darts player. In my first night of official competition, I did quite well in the game Cricket. Luckily for me, my darts partner at our work party, was someone who amazingly played darts better the drunker he became. And our opponents were worse the drunker they became. I was the one sober, stabilizing influence in the game. The work party was quite scandalous although rather interesting. Sometimes I think that the longer I live in New York, the less I can make any claims to innocence. It is shockingly entertaining to a girl who spent the better part of the last ten years in Provo, Utah.

Tuesday, January 25, 2005

Five Years to Repair

So apparently, the A and C subway lines in New York could take up to five years to repair after a fire damaged a switching station yesterday. My question is this - how can it take five years to repair anything in New York? What is wrong with the imcompetent people at the MTA that it takes five years to fix a subway line? I think you could build a whole new subway line in that amount of time. And it will probably just be another excuse for the MTA to raise subway fares again (not that they actually need an excuse). So much for trying to take the A train to go to JFK airport.

It is just another example to add to my list of why New York drives me crazy (this was after I made my peace with the Big Apple on Sunday). I guess my temporary cease-fire with the city was bound to end once the white snow ended and the brown sludge began. So much for the city looking clean - it looks more disgusting than ever and my pants' legs are paying the price.

Today is another day in the Bronx Family Court of witnesses not showing up and me wasting my time and court.


Sunday, January 23, 2005

I survived the Blizzard of 2005

"The Blizzard of 2005" that is what all of the television stations were calling the snow storm we got this weekend. They made it seem so dramatic and serious, but it was just 13 inches of snow in New York City. It kept me inside of my apartment reading the newly released "Children at War" by PW Singer all weekend. While the subject of child soldiers around the world is an important and interesting one, I couldn't help but feel like I was wasting a perfectly good weekend.

Today, I finally ventured out after the snow stopped. I didn't go to church like I was supposed to, but I wandered over to Central Park to enjoy the scenes of kids on their sleds and dogs jumping in powdery snow piled higher than the dogs were tall. New York looked profoundly beautiful, in a way that I don't think that I have ever seen it before. There is some truth to what the lady interviewed in Forest Hills on the news last night said about the city only ever looking clean when it snows. It made me happy, and it made all of the snow seem worth it. I reconciled with New York for awhile, admitting that she isn't as bad as I constantly make her out to be. What makes her so bad is that even in her most beautiful moments, I am alone here and do not have anyone to share said Central Park snow with.

I was also sad that it had to snow like this on the weekend - because if it would have been during the week then possibly we would have gotten a day off of work which certainly would have been welcomed. The scene in Central Park on a Wednesday would have even been lovelier.

Wednesday, January 19, 2005

Two Rejections, A Cable Bill, and My Conviction Record

This is what I had in my mail yesterday. The rejections came from places that I sent my resume to for Seattle, and that don't want me to work for them. The Cable Bill speaks for itself. The Conviction Record comes from my defense of the 1st Amendment in Provo, Utah which lead to a Disorderly Conduct finding. Nazis.
The most troubling of course is the rejections. The better part of my life has been spent dealing with rejections, but I never really have dealt with mail rejections. I never was rejected from any of the colleges or grad schools that I applied to. I never applied to multiple jobs because I just stuck with the first job which accepted me. Now, I am continually being bombarded with written recognitions that I am not good enough to work for people and it is seriously bothering me alot more than I thought it would. I keep saying I am not a career driven person, but I hate setting myself out to fail as well.
It makes me think of Condelezza Rice. Granted, I am no fan of Ms. Rice, but I just think that putting yourself up for questioning and scrutiny not only from senators but from millions of Americans who are watching is incredibly brave. I don't think that I could stand to have my credentials and ethics questioned in that way. I hate it in court when people question my motivations. I try to be nice and straightforward to everyone, and the penalty for blatant honesty in court is to have people constantly calling you names. Now I have to put my credentials out there again in order to find a new job and well, I just don't take the constant humbling well.
But here is the good news - my dentist yesterday told me that I had perfect teeth. That works out nicely for one as orally fixated as I am.

Monday, January 17, 2005

What an ass!

I am talking about myself, of course. Today is the first three day weekend that I have had from work that I think that I haven't spent with DJ. Oh wait - President's Day last year.
As generally happens when I have too much free time on my hands (or rather, when I should be doing something more productive but I am not), I have been feeling too nostalgic today reading old emails, journals, and such, and I have had one abiding feeling - what an idiot I was! Seriously, my past relationships are so laughable and forced melodramatic. I am so glad that I am not that person anymore.
The thing that I realized today is that for all of my tears and assumed emotion from the past, all of my relatonships were pretty meaningless and juvenile. I never thought of myself as a "We" with any of those people. I never got beyond the forced attraction that drew me to any of those people to see them as a real person, but I was always in love with the idea of them. Dumb. Brooke, whom I swore that I loved, was just a silly guy with way too many horomones and not enough practicality. He was a boy I could idealize and take care of at the same time without having to really know him. I cried so many tears for an idea that was never really real.
Who knew that Martin Luther King Day could make me think so honestly about my romantic misgivings? I doubt that it is the legacy of Dr. King and more like the presence of one Mr. James that has created this honest reflection.


But I do have to say on an unrelated note, that In Good Company is a great flick. I love Topher Grace! His character is great! But I am a sucker for tall, skinny boys who work too much.

Thursday, January 13, 2005

Speaking of negligence

Now I have really neglected the blog. I get so lazy. And then I get so bored and think, why did I stop blogging? Then I think, what is the point of blogging? Then, I think it is all self-congratulatory b.s.. Then, I hate blogging. Then, I think that I really like the self-affirmation of blogging. Then, I realize I have nothing to say. Then, it bothers me that I have nothing to say because I feel like I used to have so much to say. Then, I think that it is because I stop writing things down that I no longer have anything to say. Then, I realize I should start blogging again.

It has been a rainy, not snowy winter in New York. But in spite of that small respite, I hate this winter here more than ever. How long until I move to Seattle?

October, November, and December were nice - Seattle or some other vacation every two weeks. Now I have to wait until President's Day weekend until Seattle. That blows.

This blog sucks. It is all about my vacation plans. But when I am not here in New York is the only time that anything good seems to happen.