Of Who Done It? Tale of the Kitchen Felon.

 

Nicole and a Stuffed Doggy.

Here’s a picture of one of my besties staring down the camera with a stuffed dog in her dress. Her quizzical, but stern face, pretty sums up the emotions of the words below.

Every day, when I walk into the kitchen, I have the same thought, “Where did all these dishes come from?” I’ll do the dishes at night, and by 6:00pm the next day we’re out of glasses, there are piles of dirty plates (not rinsed off, mind you), pans on the stove top, and bowls in the living room. It’s baffling.

So I’ll sit there and ponder how many of these are mine. Here lies a typical day:

Breakfast: none – who has time for breakfast?

Lunch: frying pan, spatula, plate, knife, glass

Dinner: pan, stirring spoon, bowl, fork, glass

Total: utensils = 2, cooking stuff = 4, plates = 1, bowl = 1, glasses = 2

If all three of us created the exact same number of dishes, then that would account for 30 dirty things next to the sink. But it would mostly consist of small stuff, which could easily fit into one load of dishes crammed onto our drying rack – sadly, we don’t have a dish washer. It doesn’t explain how literally all of our forks and glasses disappear. Or where the stack of 10 plates comes from. Or why there’s always gross stuff stuck to the inside of 5 pots/pans – seriously roomies, rinse your dishes, don’t make me drawn a penis on your face with a sharpie when you’re asleep. And it certainly doesn’t explain why I end up doing an average of three loads of dishes regularly.

But of course, no one is guilty. When we discuss the dishes, everyone claims to have only used 3 dishes – 7 tops. Maybe we have a magical dirty dish fairy. Or maybe the hermit downstairs, comes up to use our kitchen when we’re not home. Or maybe one of us, if not all of us, are sneaky liars.

It’s like when I was little and the towel bar broke in the bathroom. My dad sat everyone down to see who broke the towel bar. No one fessed up, everyone had the same face of, “Jeepers! I don’t know.” To this day the towel bar mystery has never been solved, but I’d place money on my brother Eric. I just have this feeling that he’s the guilty one.

I have a theory that I’ll never have a clear answer as to who the dishes monster is,  but I have a hunch  …. not that they’ll ever fess up.

Of BFF’s

Lainie wearing a balloon hat

My roomie – rocking the first balloon hat I ever made.

Lainie is my roommate, bestie, and fellow dancer. We met as extra follows when we were part of a swing dance performance team. She made me mac-n-cheese. I made fun of her tiny excuse of a living room. And we’ve been friends ever since.

Lainie greatly enjoys trying to make me do things that I really should do, and I want to do, but require effort. Things like: start a vlog, stretch, make a choice for dinner, or write a blog post.

Which is why when she sarcastically stated, “You should write about me!”

I said, “Fine.”

You’re welcome Lainie, it’s officially time for your long overdue spotlight:

I’ve never met someone so determined to stay in a cozy corner of denial. Course, I understand, making effort sucks. It’s scary and undesirable – I too, avoid it as often as I can, especially in the romantic realm.

For Lainie knows as well as I – there is little more horrifying than confessing your feelings to someone who does not return them. That leads to awkward encounters, tears, and hours of bitching out your friends who pushed you in that direction in the first place. Denial is best, even if at times it’s a wee bit lonely.

Though I feel it’s important to stress her absolute hypocrisy. She has a tendency to call me out on my shit, quite often. Rather than being a polite friend who will let me sit in my preferred bubble of denial. It’s dreadfully annoying. So of course, I return the favor and call her out whenever necessary.

But still, I let her hang around.

For despite the fact that she throws pillows at me, lightly hits anyone who says something dumb or offensive, is convinced that billowy shirts make her skinny ass look fat, and watches that awful Once Upon a Time show. She’s still the first person I go to when I have a problem, am confused about life, or want cookies made.

After all, what more could you want in a best friend, than someone who makes a killer soup, is willing to watch Gilmore Girls for hours, and also finds puppets hilarious.

Plus, we have a pact: “Roomies till partners!”

So I couldn’t get rid of her even if I wanted to.

Of Getting Lost in BC

Going on an adventure

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My friends and I have a tendency to get lost in Canada. A lot.

Since we all live in the States, unless we have access to wi-fi, we must revert back to the pre-cellular device days and thus are required to look for familiar landmarks, ask for directions, or try to read a map with very tiny print. Inevitably, the simplest directions somehow get clouded in an array of one-way streets, signs that we swear can only be read if you’re driving in a certain direction, and the frustrating inability to phone a friend.

But we love it.

Or, at least I do.

Nothing, and I stress nothing, is more satisfying than finally reaching your destination after hours of wrong turns. In fact, that moment when you first step out of the car is guaranteed to be the highlight of your evening. From that point on, you are floating on  a champagne filled cloud in the sky, it would take some serious what-the-fuckery to bring your buzz down.

It’s gotten to a point, where I actually kinda/sorta know where I am. Not because I’m familiar with the streets, but because I’ve been lost there so many times before. Which means that while I am not certain of where we should go, I do know which way not to go. And that my friends, is baby-steps.

The truth is, what little shame I may have, is completely gone once I get lost. And then, when I get some much needed directions, I’ll still find a way to get confused and make a wrong turn. It’s almost a guarantee.

Here’s just a sample platter of actual things I’ve done when completely at a loss for where I was:

  • Made reckless turns because in the distance I thought I saw the correct road sign.
  • Struggled to get information from a clerk who had never heard of where I was trying to go, which was the border. In the end, they gave me a blank stare and I had to ask a guy in the parking lot.
  • Stopped in the middle of an intersection and asked the flagger for a detour when they closed down the street that I desperately needed.
  • Yelled at some bros partying on a balcony.
  • Chased down a mini-van and knocked on the passenger window – the poor lady nearly had a heart attack.
  • Blocked a semi-truck with my car, hopped out, stood on the edge of the truck, and proceeded to ask the one toothed man, “Excuse me, how do I get to America?”

 

Of Going Out Alone

Perks of Being a Wallflower - Alone Gif

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There’s a handful of activities where when people go by themselves the rest of the world assumes that they are lonely or have no friends. Such as shopping, movies, restaurants, sporting events, concerts, cruises, weddings, plays, etc.

I understand the fear of a social stigma. No one desires to be the awkward person standing around without anyone to keep them company. Forced to pretend that they’re having a really intense texting conversation, absolutely fascinated by the scenery, or looking around for their “friend” but they can’t seem to find them anywhere!

Personally, I like going to the movies by myself. After all, it’s not like you’re going to talk to each other during the film anyways.

I also enjoy shopping all on my own. Especially if I’m not looking for anything in particular. I don’t need someone to tell me if what I’m trying on looks good. I have a very strict policy of, “If you don’t absolutely love it, don’t buy it. If there’s any hesitation, don’t buy it.”

I don’t even mind going to a play/musical solo. If I want to see a show, but no one is able to go with me, I’m still going to see the show. Simple as that. I’m not going to let something like friends stand in the way of live theater. I’ll just bring my pocket-sized Sudoku book for intermission.

Now off course I prefer if someone is able to tag along. And there are plenty of places I would not want to go without a date or friend – if I had a choice. For everyone is bound to fall victim to feeling alone at some point. Except with shopping – I really do like to shop by myself.

 

Of Social Media

Social Media Cartoon

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I’m trying to work out this social media thing. For a long time I’ve been meaning to be more of an Internet whore and splatter the web with even more of my thoughts, but I’ve yet to do anything.

UNTIL NOW!

A few days ago I set up a Facebook page for Classy With a Twist (click here or on the sidebar). Ahem, if you’d be so kind, please go and “like” it – so that at the very least – I appear more popular than I actually am.

Then I set up a Twitter @ClassyTwist (click here or on the sidebar). This is a whole new territory for me, but I have always wanted a place to publicly store my every thought, whim, and what I had for lunch.

Through both these sites I’m hoping to be able to communicate with ya’ll in a more interactive way. Take suggestions, answer questions, inform people of any progress made with my side-project writing dreams, so on and so forth.

I’m still working on the VLOG aspect, but I’m pretty excited for what I have in mind. But I’ll post those details later.

So, yeah, let’s become best buds in the social media world. It’ll be like we’re hanging out – except, not really.

Social Media Fingernail Art

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Of Pretty Friends

Friends

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I’ve always said, “I don’t have ugly friends. Well, I had one once, and it didn’t end well”.

Most people find this flattering or humorous. After all, I certainly don’t mean any malice towards my fellow humans.  But every now and then, someone reacts with a bitch-are-you-serious stare. Or instantly launches into a verbal judgment of me – assuming shallowness and other unpleasant personality traits.

Okay, I get it, you are easily offended and wish that everyone was treated with love at all times  – and in an ideal world, everyone is. I respect that. But here’s my question, dear person who jumps down my throat, do you find your friends ugly?

Honestly, it’s a fun reverse, because no one ever says no. And I would hope not.

It’s not about being shallow or only caring about how you and your posse appear to the masses. You should find your friends beautiful. Granted some might be more physically striking than others. Or soul-wise more stunning. But ultimately, unless you’re one of those people that surround yourself with others you think of as ugly to make yourself feel good – your friends are most likely attractive.

And there’s nothing wrong with that.

Of Balloon Madness

Balloon Fighting

My friends Lainie and Jackie decked out in balloons.

We could be going to the bars. Instead we stay home playing with balloon animals, hats, flowers, and swords. Why? Because we’re awesome! And because my friends just learned about my secret talent. I know how to make balloon creations.

So what do I do when my best friends are in Vegas and I’m not? I go into their apartment, set up an Easter egg hunt, and decorate with balloons. Clearly I need more friends.

I wasn’t aware they didn’t know. When I attended the Lord’s Boot Camp (a two-week training period for the evangelical and handyman-esque skills teens may need on the mission field) I had the choice of wire laying or balloon making – I chose balloon making – twice. Course, two days ago marks the first time I’ve gotten bendy with balloons since I was seventeen. I think I did a damn good job.

Me With Balloons

The first balloon hat I ever made – and a flower.

This evening, rather than venturing outside and mingling with friends, acquaintances, and strangers in the way that young adults are supposed to behave. We stayed home and made MORE balloon creations. Lainie made a swan. Jackie made a flower that looked like a deformed-exploding-penis. And I made random things and a much better parrot than Jackie did – though she tried to claim that she was going for a vulture after both creations were complete.

Eventually this happened:

Then this happened:

Just because we’re all in our twenties doesn’t mean that we can enjoy some good ole’ fashion balloon fighting fun.

Of “Drive Safe”

Road Sign.

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There are certain phrases we all say. Words that function like muscle memory. That are spoken without our brain having any choice in the discussion. So we say them, someone else says the appropriate words in response, and we continue on our way.

The phrase that I’ve been noticing the most, as of late, is drive safe.

“Alright, I’ll see ya later.”

“Bye, drive safe.”

“Okay, bye!”

Why do we say that? Do we honestly think that if we don’t tell them to drive safe that something horrid is going to happen to them? That they’ll be driving along and they’ll think to themselves, I wonder what would happen if I turned the steering wheel really fast – oh wait, I’m supposed to drive safe. That’s not very safe. Thanks friend.

The words are merely a filler, in the way that we ask acquaintances how they’re doing expecting to hear the response, “I’m fine.” Sometimes words are just that, things we say because it’s the cultural norm, it’s expected, and we don’t even realize we do it. So I’ve started saying different words:

“Alright, I’ll see ya later.”

“Bye, drive safe.”

“Damn, I was gonna drive ninety and backwards.”

Or

“Alright, I’ll see ya later.”

“Bye, drive dangerously!”

“Haha …… okay?”

I always get an awkward chuckle in response, suddenly, I’m seen as incredibly witty. And for what? Breaking our prescribed script. Changing up the normal conversation. If we all switched around our dialogue then one day simply saying, “Okay, bye,” would be seen as bizarre.

But what I find the most fascinating is that my changed words have become my script – it’s an inescapable cycle of habit.

Road Sign Swerve

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Of Creepy Vs. Cute

Creepy girl

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Everyone has the potential for coming across as an all-star creeper. Trust me, I have the skills to creep your pants off if I desire – take that literally or figuratively, I don’t care. At the same time, all humans can come across absolutely adorable, cuteness oozing through all pores. So the next time you think, ugh s/he is so creepy, just remember that someone somewhere in the world thinks the exact same thing about you.

The real question is what makes a person or interaction creepy? To put it simply, I think it comes down to understanding a rapport. Are we friends? Are they attractive? Have I met them? Do I like them (romantic or platonic)? These are the questions that determine if the behavior is cute, creepy, or creepy-esque (an awkward, but awesome, friendship).

For any of you that are easily confused by social situations, if the answer to the question, have I met them? is no. Then don’t make a move other than to get to know them – for you will come across creepy unless you’re celebrity-level-attractive.

If the answer to all four questions is a heartfelt YES!!! Then any attempts at being creepy will fail. In order to succeed in making the other human uncomfortable you’ll have to put forth a lot of effort and catch your romantic interest off guard. Best to accept your fate and just be the delectable little dumpling that you are, for everything you do will have your partner thinking, awww. So relax, watch some gag worthy romantic comedies, snuggle whilst drinking tea, and proceed to melt into an adorable pile of goo.

In all other circumstances there’s a boundary. Defining the line of cute vs. creepy will require you to pay attention to your surroundings. The same behavior can trigger very different reactions if you’re lost in your head. I’ll give you an example:

I was saying goodbye to a girl I was kind of/sorta/almost seeing for a while and she put her hands in the pockets of my trench coat when we stood outside my car. We were standing in a middle-school slow dance pose chatting, when I paused for a moment, looked down, and said, “Hey, I sent a man away for putting his hand in my pocket.” To which she replied, “Yeah, but you like me.” We proceed to kiss goodbye and I drove away. It was all very simple and sweet, damn cute I’d say.

The man that I mentioned to her, trespassed into creepy territory. I was at a nightclub and I gave the bastard a chance by letting him dance with me. And to my surprise he was decent (for a club dancer) and he even bought me a drink.

I’d never had someone buy me a drink before, and I haven’t since. He continued hanging around me, which was fine, after all, I did let him dance with me and buy me alcohol. But then he put his hand in the pocket of my dress. Excuse me! Those are my pockets. Mine! Put your arm around my shoulder or waist, fine, but don’t put your hand in my pocket, mediocre looking man I’ve just met. I lifted his hand up and said, “You can’t just put your hand in my pocket.” And he said, “But I bought you a drink.” And I said “Yeah, and thank you. But you still can’t put your hand in my pocket.” Then he huffed and puffed away and eventually was groping on a super skanky chick. Creepy.

Ultimately the behavior was the same – hands in pockets – the difference was the rapport.

The final type of behavior in these situations is creepy-esque. Basically it’s taking what would be seen as creepy and blowing it up to satirical proportions. Be warned, not everyone has the personality or skill to pull this off. It really is a talent you’re born with, and can only be practiced on people who actually like you as a human being. Otherwise – you’ll have no friends.

I have some friendships that are founded on my being creepy-esque and them playing the straight card. I’ll hug them, whisper sweet nothings in their ear, and they’ll stand there like I just put a gun to their head. Everyone laughs, and we go on our merry ways. Other friends will dish the creepy-esque right back – quickly those friendships turn into a competitive, top that bitch, type of bond. And there are some people who I wouldn’t be anything but cute and socially polite for, why?, because I understand our rapport and they couldn’t handle the creepy side of my persona.

Are you/they being cute or creepy is a question that can easily be asked daily, both in romantic and platonic situations. It’s amazing to me how many people don’t understand the nature (and beauty for that matter) of various forms of friendships and bonds.

So are you cute or creepy? The answers gotta be, “Yes.”

Of “Natural” Yearnings

Love Equality

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Sometimes I’ve found that when people don’t share someone’s sexuality they respond with, “It’s just not natural.” Oye! Why is this still a statement in our society? I’ve come to the realization that those that respond with claims of it’s unnatural simply lack the ability to think outside the binary that they’ve lodged themselves into. For society loves to define people with binaries, and in terms of sexuality there’s only two options: gay or straight. With straight being the “better” of the two boxes. Thus, how could a human even consider making the gay choice? As if a choice was there to be made. Honestly, why would anyone choose the route of prejudice and oppression – that’s just nonsense. However, they can choose to cave into the pressures of their surroundings and deny who they are.

We have gotten better as a human race. Tolerance, acceptance, and equality is where we’re headed – some of us faster than others. Someone’s gaiety is no longer the great scandal it used to be, course, that might not be true depending on where you live. I’m fortunate to live in a liberal part of the country, where my gayness is accepted and not seen as a big ordeal to most people. I feel completely comfortable being who I am around my friends, a luxury that I’m aware not everyone has.

But there’s still people out there who would not be as accepting. Like the ignorant fellow who posted this picture to his blog with the caption declaring that nature demonstrates how homosexuality is not natural or fruitful (I’m paraphrasing):

Homophobic Cartoon

 

I saw this and immediately rolled my eyes. Seriously? You’re defining what’s natural with electronics? How are electronics natural? That makes about much sense as portraits of white Jesus, even though he lived in the Middle East, I guarantee he was not white. Or saying that peanut butter and chocolate are not compatible because they taste different. It’s silly.

For one, electronics are man-made. Two, going along with the plug-in example, I think it’s only fair to point out that there are other electronics that make EVERYTHING in that cartoon compatible – haven’t you ever ran out of outlets while setting up Christmas lights and had to find a way to make the ‘non-compatible’ plug ends work together? Hell, by this logic an extension cord is promoting polygamy.  A sexuality that I’m assuming anyone who agrees with the comic also finds unnatural.

But I still don’t feel the need to insult you. If the blogger who posted that happens to read this, I’m not trying to Internet bully you, your photo was simply the perfect illustration for something I’ve been meaning to write for several months. I think that you’re allowed to believe what you want to believe – I just wish that didn’t have to include insulting people who are different from you, I wish homophobia was a ghost story told around a campfire. I understand the mindset of those that find homosexuality unnatural, for I was raised to believe the same thing. It’s simple – you don’t understand it, and you were taught it was wrong – thus it must be so. If only life were that straightforward.

Here’s what I think about the word natural. Almost everyone is using it wrong. Take for instance polygamous relationships. I’m not polygamous, and I was talking to another non-polygamous friend about multiple partner relationships.

She stated, “It doesn’t seem natural, I can’t imagine being willing to share my boyfriend with someone else.”

I responded, “It’s not natural for you, that doesn’t make it an unnatural act. It’s just not meant for you. But for someone else, it’s completely natural and makes them happy. So natural in fact, that they can’t imagine living any other way. Just like any other sexuality. It’s not about what is and isn’t natural – it’s what natural for you.”

In my opinion, that’s where the heart of all these debates about what’s right and wrong, natural and unnatural, come from. People have a hard time understanding that unnatural for them does not mean unnatural for everyone. The world isn’t that black and white. There’s not two boxes. With one box being superior, and the other a bunch of lost souls, doomed to live a life of darkness and sorrow.

There’s actually no boxes at all – there are people – a wonderful and diverse crowd of fellow humans. We should embrace our differences. After all, God made us all in His image right? Maybe there’s more to God than what’s just in the Bible. Or maybe, we got His message confused. After all, the word of God was penned by man.

To quote The L Word, “If God hates us, then why are we all so sexy?”

Love is Love

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