Saturday, October 11, 2014
Sunday, September 28, 2014
I'm sitting in the center of the courtyard at Alta alone with my computer.
In front of me to my left is a date. They're talking about his dog and the surgery the dog is recovering from. Sounds like the dog is going to be ok.
Behind me to my left is a group of friends. I heard the word 'colleague' but that's all I know because they're just out of earshot and speaking softly. Which I respect.
Lined against the fence to my right are medium sized groups of high school students. Really young, good looking high school students gathered probably from Harbor or CDM. A few trickle in and trickle out at a time and every time someone does, they all stand up and hug each other. A lot. If I didn't know school were already in session, these hugs would imply that they have been through so much together, like a war or a summer camp of intense emotional bonding and were then immediately torn apart from each other, separated by galaxies for decades. These are the kinds of hugs that are being exchanged. But I'm pretty sure they probably last saw each other on Friday. I'm judging them a little bit for this. Kind of like I did when I was in high school and sitting at this same table, surrounded by these same groups of high schoolers, giving each other the same hugs and me feeling simultaneously intimidated and superior.
By the way, I had forgotten how good looking teenage boys the Newport Mesa school district can be. Go with me here. I'm speaking from a completely observational, completely uninterested point of view, but seriously. They're tan probably from water polo or surfing all time and their trendy moms are still buying them cool clothes and they have yet to hit college and be swallowed by frat culture where they'll gain 25-30 pounds and not drink enough water. They have no idea what's coming and a little bit of me wants to go over and tell them. Not to warn them. But more to rub it in their faces. After typing that sentence, it's clear to me now that I may still be holding onto a bit of resentment from high school. Let it go, Julia, you nerd lite, you.
(The girls are all wearing very short cut off jean shorts. If anything, I'm wondering more about how they aren't freezing-- besides the fact that they're butt cheeks are hanging out. That's for their mother's to deal with.)
(Maybe that's why I didn't have a boyfriend in high school? I was never willing to be cold in order for them (boys) to see more body parts of mine.)
(Maybe that's why I don't have a boyfriend now.)
Case in point: I'm wearing black jeans, the red plaid shirt I stole from my mom during high school and birkenstocks. Comfort clothes. My toes are just barely cold, which I kind of love because it means that we might be sliding into California Autumn. Which doesn't mean much more than barely cold toes.
I'm confused about a lot of things right now, but when I got home from Charlotte this weekend, I knew I wanted to blog. On Friday, I got such an encouraging email from a new friend that made me realize what a treasure this space is and how, of all times, this is the time for me to take advantage of it.
"Can I just move to Maine and make wedding dresses and listen to James Taylor all day?" Something that I wrote in a journal a year ago yesterday. Maine. My idealized haven of autumnal colors, fresh seafood and solitude. When I catch myself thinking about moving to Maine a lot, I know that I'm probably avoiding dealing with something. And I've been thinking about Maine a lot lately. Wouldn't it just be so easy to move to Maine and work at a coffee shop that affords me to live in a small, uninsulated apartment in the backyard of an older couple's white sided house. I would paint the door yellow and I'd dye my hair black, not because I'm depressed or anything but because I'd think it would match with the weather better than any other color of hair. I'd wear two sweaters at once and I wouldn't have a lot of friends. I would be lonely, but I'd have a lot of time to cook and finally become someone who reads a lot instead of just lying to people and saying that I read a lot. Which is what I do now. Maybe I'd meet a nice, slightly round butcher and we wouldn't ever go on a date, but we'd flirt while discussing beef tips or something.
The hardest thing about moving home: feeling perpetually lonely and also wanting to just be alone as much as possible. I feel angsty in such a cliche, post college way that it's almost embarrassing, but it's not fake to me. It's totally real. And I hesitate to even admit it because I can hear the "I told you so" from states away. But it really is real and I don't feel like people are getting that. My mind immediately compares this feeling to that thing when the crazy person is sitting in the mental hospital and is looking around at all the doctors and nurses and other patients and thinking to themselves "They're the crazy ones. Not me." So I get it. I get that you're reading this with a little bit of that thing that you're reading this with. A small smirk on your face and maybe thinking about how you felt the same way when you graduated college or how naive I am to even begin to allow myself to think that my life is hard. Or maybe you aren't and you get it and you don't think I'm being dramatic at all in which case please mail me an anonymous letter in my mail box with your favorite word and a drawing of you and me.
The styling internship is maybe ending soon. I can't afford to work for free. Also, it's depressing to work for free. But I'm starting another job on Wednesday in Costa Mesa with a hair and makeup artist as her administrative assistant. I'm excited about it.
2035 self: you're reading this and wondering why things sound so bleak for us 3 days after turning 23. life definitely does not suck. but it's definitely playing tricks on us.
and we are still like super, super single.
Tuesday, September 16, 2014
Sunday, September 7, 2014
I'm trying to decide-- actually, it's less of a decision and more of a calling or an invitation. Anyway, I'm trying to figure out which chair in my parents living room is going to be my chair. The one that becomes my default, the one that I start to assign feelings to and start to think of more like a living thing in the same way I used to with my dolls as a kid, the one that when my parents move to a new house, I think back at this living room and picture myself sitting in that chair.
Right now I'm sitting on the couch, but to be honest, it leaves a bit to be desired. It's a blue couch and perfectly comfortable, but it's lacking in some way that I can't quite determine. Maybe I just haven't taken enough naps on it yet to bond properly.
It's hard to deny the fact that this part of my life is an obvious shift from the past and let's just go ahead and embrace that cliche and call this a new chapter. Of my life. Of this blog. Of myself. So, I'm going to try and hit all of the major points, if not for you, for myself as a record of how things went:
Two weeks ago, I moved back to California and into one of my parents guest rooms from my summer in Philadelphia as an intern at Anthropologie. Earlier this summer, they offered me a job as an assistant designer. I turned it down. Philadelphia was nice and the chocolate chip cookies at the corporate cafe of the URBN headquarters were enough to make me rethink my entire life plans and all of my morals, but something in me felt strongly about coming back to California. For what? I didn't know. (Let's be clear: I don't know.) (Let's be clearer: The last few days I've wondered more often than I'd like to admit if I've made a huge mistake.)
I'd moved to Philadelphia from four years of college in Savannah, Georgia. But now I'm in Costa Mesa, and one of the walls in the guest room is covered in yellow floral wallpaper. For the last few days, I have been unpacking boxes of my life in college, which I suppose could also be considered the only adult life I've known, into the room with the wallpaper dividing everything into four piles: keep, give, store, toss. It was surprising and uncomfortable how many things that in Georgia were a given to make the effort to hold onto and ship across the country just don't make sense here and ended up in the toss pile. Then there are the things that are truly important to me. Pictures that I want to see every day. Sewing supplies that I use as often as I can. Where, in my parents home of bachelor pad style empty-nesterness does that all belong? Even my clothes feel different. I stood with my arms crossed, looking at all of them hanging in the closet and it threw me. Is that who I am? All of this color? And pattern? And dresses? My "all time favorites"? It doesn't feel like me. Or what I think of as me.
Today, I filled up my car with gas. I punched in my zip code. 31401. Savannah, Georgia. Which I guess is my way of saying that Georgia is where, as of this moment, I still find my default chair.
Money. It sucks to not have any. No matter where you live.
Friends. I have them here, but it's different. They haven't spent the last four years with their lives on time-out waiting for me to come back, but this isn't Christmas break where we get to have dinner and talk all about life and gossip about people we used to be close with and then pay the bill and see each other the next year. I'm here to weasel my way in now. To establish myself as someone they call. And someone I call. And we go on walks where we can talk about life and not have to give months of back story because ideally, they'll know it already. Because we've lived it with together.
Friends Part II. I have them there. On my old default chair in Savannah as well as in places where they are adjusting and meeting new friends and making new lives too. I miss them. These people know me. They really, really know me and who I am. And I know how they each like their coffee and they all know how I like to talk about myself a lot.
Friends Part Ib. If you're my friend and you live in Orange County and you're reading this, please don't read too much into this and let this offend you, but I would say that I have about 5 good friends in Orange County and 4 of them have or are about to have children. I wonder what this says about me. (PS- all of your children are glorious and no, I did not mind holding her in the cry room, in fact, I really, really loved it.)
Streets. Is everything in Orange County somehow off of Bristol? And why can't I ever remember the difference between Bristol, Bear, and Baker?
Tomorrow, I start an internship with a stylist in West Hollywood. Internship numero six. The future is about as blank as it possibly could be and with all of the adjustments, something about this time of life is already so sweet and so wonderful and challenging in the exact way I wanted it to be. I'm digging in. I'm excited. This is where I'm supposed to be. A time of learning and relearning.
Friday, September 5, 2014
Thursday, July 24, 2014
Starting to believe that I'm going through my rebellious teen years right now. Except without peer pressure of recreational drug use, sneaking out to hang out with boys from the fast crowd, and drinking cheap beer at a strangers house.
I'd be game for sneaking out if the opportunity presented itself.
In recent months, I've been super into the idea of quitting things and into making executive, possibly ill-advised decisions all on my own. Into making announcements instead of asking questions.
Maybe this is less of being rebellious and more of being a grown up. Besides the quitting.
It's too hot to wear leather.
Super into being proud of myself.
Super into in Indian food.
I'm interested in having a desk with a view. Even if that view is just my own backyard.
Especially if that view is just my own backyard.
Monday, June 30, 2014
Life, right now, feels a little bit like one of those machines on a game show that is a telephone booth full of money and wind. And I feel like I have 1:00 minute on the clock to grab all of the money. But instead of money, it's little slips of paper with different things that I'm sure of written on each piece. So the wind is blowing and my face is red because I know the whole audience is watching and I'm grabbing grabbing grabbing at what-- I'm not sure exactly, but I want to grab as many as possible before the wind dies down and I find myself leaving the telephone booth only to realize that all I'm holding is a bunch of handfuls of slips of paper.
A few of the slips of paper that you're going to have to pry out of my cold, dead hands:
I graduated. I also like how curly my hair is. Also, this was the last moment for the following two weeks of which I wasn't crying.
Wonderful, wonderful people at my side.
Saying "goodbye" was kind of the worst thing ever. For the record: these smiles are fake. Or at least mine was. But they're hopeful and proud smiles too. The kind that hold just a ton of words and stories and history that I would never really be able to get out in a real smile with all sorts of telling teeth.
How have I lived for 22 years without a pair of monogrammed pajamas? It's everything you'd think it'd be and everything you'd never expect.
I was kind of a total grouch for the majority of mom and my trip up the coast from Savannah to Philadelphia. There were fleeting moments of me being a nice person like when mom bought me a milkshake and let me sing super loud to Alison Krauss' When You Say Nothing at All over and over again, but mostly it was a lot of me crying and texting my friends and making fun of the Naval Academy and begging her to go into the Piggly Wiggly to buy tampons for me because I'm still nervous about running into someone I know (in the middle of Virginia) and them seeing and officially knowing that I've hit puberty.
Let it be known that LJP and DWP were both kind of saints for dealing with me that week in the way that they did. Patience and understanding with a healthy dose of honesty and encouragement. And pretending not to notice that I didn't lift one box for the entire moving process.
And then mom and I got to Philadelphia. Have I even... no, I don't think I have. I'm such a bad blother (blog + mother... or maybe I like blommy better). Ok. So, the reason I'm in Philadelphia: I'm interning for Anthropologie at the URBN headquarters, which are located in Philadelphia, with their casuals (casuals = sweats, pajamas, robes, knit dresses, comfy stuff) team.
This picture was after my first day of work when mom and I met for dinner at Little Nona's. The food was delicious. The company was excellent. But homegirl still couldn't keep it together and by the time we were splitting the tiramisu I forcer her to get me, I was crying again*. And continued to do so from the restaurant. To my car. To her hotel. To the curb. To hugging her goodbye. And then all the way back to my apartment where I really let things get out of hand.
Anyway, I probably ruined dinner.
I hope mom still likes me.
I barely made it a week before I came crawling back to these lads in New York City for a little TLC. Stick with what you know, yamiright?
To truly kick off my time in Philly, somehow over the course of the 4 days that I lived in the city, I contracted a deliciously contagious case of Hand, Foot and Mouth disease. How? I will never know. Especially since the virus is so rare among adults that about 90% of the websites I looked up for information didn't even speak directly to the reader, but instead, immediately assumed that the patient was typically under 6 years old and are written mostly in the form of "If your child is..." or "You might notice that your son or daughter..." No, no, no, Internet. Not a six year old here. Just a 22 year old college graduate slash intern, looking at 6 days of doctor prescribed quarantine with an empty fridge and a hopeful future.
My feet are healing quite nicely, thank you for asking and I am no longer contagious so, right now, you might say, life is pretty ahsa-weeet.
More soon. I promise.
*More tears in the month of June 2014 than from January 17, 2012 (the day after the Gilmore Girl's finale) through May 2014 combined. Someone diagnose me with something.