(Ignore the break of several months here and pretend it’s still July!)
This is a cruel question because it reminds me that I have no record of all the concerts I’ve attended, which greatly upsets my pack-rat, never-want-to-forget-anything-despite-a-bad-memory brain.
BUT, I can highlight a few favorites and some other ones I can remember:
My first concert was in college. I had been invited to go to an *NSYNC concert in either late grade school or high school, can’t remember which, but at the time I was too scared to go. So my first-ever concert happened during freshman year of college, when I saw The Hush Sound in the auditorium of a local high school. Some of my friends would later get really into this band, but at the time, we saw them coming out of the tour bus before the show and were like, “Is that them? It must be them, there’s a girl with them. They have a girl in their band, right?”
My memory’s a little fuzzy on other concerts I may have attended in college. I do distinctly remember several trips to the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, though, while we could still get $10 student tickets. A friend and I saw John Williams conduct the CSO at one point, from third-row (!!!) seats. That was simply amazing. In fact, I can’t really describe how incredible that was.
In the last few years I have gone to a lot of shows for local bands and other indie bands, in large part because my friends are into the local scene. Sondre Lerche was hugely, hugely entertaining. I’ve seen him twice in concert, and both times have been super amazing. He is one of my favorite live performers ever. Sufjan Stevens live was trippy and kind of weird but really exciting. I’ve seen Beirut twice as well, once at Pitchfork in 2009 and again just this past week. He was fabulous. My friend and I consider him, Sondre, and Sufjan our top 3, and I am delighted to have seen them all live. Hopefully that will continue to happen. :)
Another recent highlight was a completely different experience: Glee live in concert at a huge arena. So much screaming and awesomeness. I don’t usually go crazy with the fangirling and squeeing (IRL I mean; the internets are a different story, hah), but a concert like that makes it pretty much impossible not to go nuts. Also, DARREN CRISS.
Other bands I can remember seeing live, in no particular order: Gold Motel, Freelance Whales, Owen Pallett, Jukebox the Ghost, the Rocket Summer, Plain White Ts, and Yeasayer.
Fringe! I am not in uber-fan mode right now since it’s summertime, but watch out for me in the fall. Fantastic show. I’m quite TV-obsessed, so there are a lot of shows that have been my addictions in the past and that I currently am in love with, but right now Fringe takes the cake.
Since the age of 9, the answer to this question has been “writer.” In more recent years, it has evolved into “something in the publishing or editing industry, hopefully with some writing of my own on the side.” Life has jaded me, I guess. But, there is still nothing like the thrill I feel when I write something creative and am satisfied with the final product. It doesn’t happen often anymore, but I often think I would be a happier person if I actually spent the time and effort it takes to reach that level of satisfaction more regularly. There was one term in college in which I wrote creatively almost every day, and I still look back at those days as some the best times of my life. So, I guess, when I get older, I’d like to reach that level of happiness again through writing, but hopefully also earn myself a living—whether that means writing on the side or writing as my job. Time will tell.
Oh gosh, I dunno. Really, though …. I don’t know! See, if transportation time was not an issue, I’d go to Disney World, and Europe, and probably lots of places I’d be too scared to visit otherwise. Hmm. Maybe I would flirt with some cute boys and participate in numerous makeout sessions, haha. So, I guess my answer is …. traveling and sexual stuff? LOL, lordy.
Yeah, I’ve failed miserably at coming up with ideas for this question. Deal with it.
I’d like to move out of my parents’ house, but a large part of me really, really doesn’t want to. Mostly because my mom will not be around much longer, and why would I move away from her when any moment I can spend with her is precious? (Of course, then I start thinking about what will happen after she is gone … I can’t just leave my dad to live alone; he would never survive it, emotionally or otherwise. So I would have to live at home indefinitely to take care of him, wouldn’t I? My brother’s got his own family now; it shouldn’t be his responsibility. So then … when will I ever live independently? When my parents are both dead? What kind of life is that? I go through this thinking cycle over and over again….)
On a completely different note: I basically don’t shave during the winter. I am a hairy beast for most of the year, haha. No wonder my legs are so pasty white, seeing as I rarely let them see daylight.
I really like Millionaire Matchmaker on Bravo … don’t judge.
I keep wanting to post these as something other than a text post, so that I can play around with the different posting formats … but none of the other options (so far) allow for titles! wtf.
Anyhoo, I use 3 separate computers right now … my desktop, my dad’s former laptop (which I am trying to convert to my desktop replacement, though now that I am starting a full-time job [!!!!!] I may decide instead to save up money to actually buy a new desktop, idk), and the laptop that belongs to the lit mag I volunteer for but that I use at home.
It is impossible to live without failing at something, unless you live so cautiously that you might as well not have lived at all—in which case, you fail by default.
- JK Rowling, in a commencement address to Harvard in 2008. I can’t say that I live by these words well at all—the fear of failing is one of my biggest fears, in fact—but I keep it tacked to my bulletin board so that I look at it every day. Her whole speech is here; it’s definitely worth a read, or a skim at least.
I also really like the Seneca quotation that currently acts as the “about me” sidebar on my tumblr—again, not something I live by very well, seeing as I waste my time constantly, but I hope one day it motivates me to change. I will reiterate it here:
It is not that we have so little time but that we lose so much. Life is long enough and our allotted portion generous enough for our most ambitious projects if we invest it all carefully. But when it is squandered through luxury and indifference, and spent for no good end, we realize it has gone, under the pressure of the ultimate necessity, before we were aware it was going. So it is: the life we receive is not short but we make it so; we are not ill provided but use what we have wastefully.
I drink orange juice like water, so that’s not a hard choice right there. We buy like 6 of these cartons at a time, and I’m pretty much the only one drinking it. Mmmm, acidic-y goodness. Keep that pulp away from me, though.
The “one food” part of this question is drastically more difficult, because I get tired of the same food all the time. But, after much thought, I think I could maybe eat tacos forever—my mom’s tacos, anyway. Ground beef (as lean as you can go; I think we get 95-99% lean), taco seasoning (Ortega brand), water. I like hard or soft shells. Preferred toppings include sour cream, perhaps some diced tomatoes, and a ridiculous amount of shredded cheddar cheese. I will also eat the taco meat heated up in a bowl with the toppings, sans shell. Or just the meat, cold, out of the tupperware container. It’s not gross, I swear! That stuff’s DELICIOUS, man.
I have been struggling with this question for like 10 days, so I guess I should suck it up and write something.
I try not to let things bother me too much—I mean, obviously things will irritate me and frustrate me, but I guess I don’t dwell on them long enough to be able to rattle off a list of pet peeves at a moment’s notice. Like, occasional spelling errors and typos? Annoying, but whatever, it’s cool—we all make mistakes, or weren’t taught correctly. I’ll correct you in my head (or actually correct you, if I am proofreading!) and move on. If it’s in a published something, that’ll irritate me more, but what can I do about that besides correct it in my head as I read? Life goes on. Slow drivers? I yell at them in my empty car, sure, but behind all that I realize that there are dozens upon dozens of reasons that someone would be driving slowly, and it’s very likely it’s not just that they enjoy driving like sloths and therefore drive (hah) me up the wall. Fundamental attribution error and all that. Most of the frustrations that stick with me long after the event is over are the ways that I disappoint myself, like being lazy, or unhealthy, or anti-social. I don’t really consider those pet peeves, though, but rather personal insecurities that have nothing to do with other people. And pet peeves are usually about other people or external things, right?
I do hate hangers, though. Fucking hangers. They’re always getting caught on each other, or I’ll try to pull out a t-shirt and all the clothes around it fricking fall off and flump onto the floor … just … UGH. FUCKING HANGERS. Just thinking about them makes me want to strangle someone. It’s too bad that I intensely dislike putting clothes in a drawer where I can’t see everything at once, or else I would give up hangers completely. DAMN YOU HANGERS.
Oh, oh, and when I am wearing earbuds and I move my arms and catch the cord and I accidentally yank the buds out of my ears or out of the speakers? REALLY REALLY ANNOYING and also painful. Stupid earbuds.
You will probably never see me get engaged, get married, get pregnant, have a baby … and it hurts so much to think about it. I can’t stand to fathom everything you’ll miss. What will I do without you? What will all of us do without you?
You were depressed for so long, and now you are happier than I’ve ever seen you. I hope you know how incredibly proud and joyful I am that you found something in life worth living for.
Hey, get a Facebook! I would like to casually stalk you and pretend that I actually had a chance of dating you. Don’t take that away from meeee!
Omg another horrible question—but at least this one implies more than one favorite book. LIST TIME AGAIN.
The Nero Wolfe series by Rex Stout. There are 47 of these books (some novels, some sets of novellas/short stories), and so far I have read 35 of them. Stout started this murder mystery series in 1934 and wrote them until his death in 1975. They follow Nero Wolfe, a sedentary genius detective, and Archie Goodwin, his right-hand man who does all the actual investigating so that Wolfe can come up with the answers. Archie is pretty much my fictional boyfriend. He narrates all the stories, so you get to know him quite well, and I’m basically in love with him and his charm and wit. I would probably say that my favorite in the series so far is In the Best Families, from 1950, which wraps up a story arc about an archenemy and also puts the spotlight very much on Archie. They made a TV series from the books in 2001, starring Timothy Hutton, which is what first got me interested in the characters. Not until several years later did I rediscover the TV series through Netflix, watch them all again with my dad, and realize that there was a WHOLE HUGE BOOK SERIES dedicated to these characters I already enjoyed. I now love the books a heck of a lot more than the series. My dad and I are reading through the series together, so it’s also been fun to chat about them with him.
His Dark Materials trilogy by Philip Pullman. I am currently rereading these along with Mark Reads. This is such an amazing fantasy series, about a girl named Lyra from a world much like ours but not the same, where everyone has an animal familiar called a daemon and where cool stuff happens. The worldbuilding is just breathtaking; I wish I could write like Pullman. I originally read these in college in preparation for the (sadly not good) movie adaptation of the first book, The Golden Compass—which, by the way, is probably my favorite of the series, though we’ll see if that changes after I finish my reread. I’m having a great time rereading them now, as I don’t remember too much beyond the broad strokes of the story … so it’s almost like reading them for the first time again.
Harry Potter. Duh. I won’t go into this one, since, well, it’s Harry Potter. It’s hard for me to pick a favorite of the series. Prisoner of Azkaban ranks way up there though, for sure.
There are some non-series novels I love too. The Prestige by Christopher Priest is fantastic. I read that after seeing the (also fantastic) movie starring Christian Bale and Hugh Jackman. The book is very different from the movie, but very good. I also remember enjoying My Antonia by Willa Cather a lot—one of the few books I read for a college class that I liked enough to call a favorite.
It is not that we have so little time but that we lose so much. Life is long enough and our allotted portion generous enough for our most ambitious projects if we invest it all carefully. But when it is squandered through luxury and indifference, and spent for no good end, we realize it has gone, under the pressure of the ultimate necessity, before we were aware it was going. So it is: the life we receive is not short but we make it so; we are not ill provided but use what we have wastefully. - Seneca