Tuesday, September 27, 2011

My Addiction

I have an addiction, and it's called "moving". (I thought this was going to be a Diet Coke post, didn't you??)

In five short days I will embark on my third move in the last 15 months. After only six sort months in Portland, my feet have decided that they've grown restless with the view here and that it's time to return to move familiar ground. It seems that every 6-8 months I begin to get this same itch. It starts at the base of my spine and works its way up to my shoulders before becoming trapped in my brain. Over and over again it says, "What else is there? You're missing something? Best move on now before you get yourself stuck." And so I do. I make plans to attend yet another college, or start looking at jobs and apartment in a different state. Since I graduated from high school, I haven't lived in any one place for more than 10 months.

This time, though, I've decided that I need to go back to somewhere a bit more familiar. Portland was an eye opening experience for me. (all three times...) I met amazing people who helped to mold my perception of myself and of the world--people who both made me question and view who I am and what I believe in and also who reinforced a confidence that I was afraid to let shine. For these people, I will be forever indebted. Boise was wonderful. I loved going to Boise State and I made one of the best friends that I've ever had in my life there! Living alone, I learned more about who I am without the influences of roommates or parents in my home and I loved it. And so now, with a new set of values (or, rather a slightly different perspective on my old ones) and a fresh zeal for life, I'm returning to the closest place I have to home: Utah--a variable Mecca for the single LDS girl.

I have to admit, one of the things that I like the most about leaving is knowing that I'm going to be missed. Sometimes, when you leave a situation, it makes you evaluate just what you really like and dislike about it. In the case of this current move, I'm realizing that maybe I'm not as alone here as I thought I was. I have a family who I love and adore, and more friends than I realized at work. Each and every one of whom will be missed.

The other thing that keeps me addicted to moving is the promise that it holds. I know, I sounds cheesy, but seriously. It's like starting a brand new relationship each time. You have the anticipation, the sense of wonder, the expectations, the desire for new things, and the unfailing faith that everything will be all right.

Perhaps my inability to settle on a place to live is indicative of my inability to find a committed relationship and, perhaps, going "home" will be just like running into the loving arms of a close friend.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Phone Calls

A few weeks ago, and friend at work and I had a rather interesting discussion on taking on the phone. We both related expereiences where we had given a guy our number and had carried on rather extensive texting conversations before the dreaded "you should call me" comment came up. We both whole heartedly agreed that talking on the phone--especially to a near stranger or someone you don't often interact with, is incredibly uncomfortable. So why do it?

I have another friend who I frequently exchange text messages with . They're casual and fun but, after about 20 minutes of texting, almost always he'll say, "call me". I haven't seen this friend in over a year, and even then he was just one of a larger group of acquaintances that I belonged to, so talking to him on the phone always feels out of rhythm and oddly personal. At that point, I help the awkwardness reach a boiling point by making all sorts of excuses not to and eventually the conversation goes away for a week or so until one of us opens up the conversation again. Why do I do this?

For years now, we have lived in a society that uses our technology for alternate means of communication. I was 15 years old when I got my first cell phone. When I was 18, my parents finally decided they needed to get an unlimited texting plan because, apparently, my brother and I weren't about to stop. Now, if I don't have my phone on me to text, facebook or otherwise be "locked in" I start to wonder what I may have missed. But, no matter how close I keep my phone, unless you are one of two or three choice people, you can bet your call is being screened.

Why is it that we want this, though? It's true that our conversations that are on phone (or even better, in person. *gasp!*) are more personal, more maybe that's the cause? Maybe, after it all, we don't want to be close to others around them? Keeping them at arms length is safe and convenient. Maybe we really just don't want to be bothered with stopping our lives for longer than we choose to give attention to another person. (And, let's face it, we've all had that friend or known that person who can talk on and on and on about absolutely nothing....gee...I wonder what that would be like...)

As I was thinking about this topic, I turned to my good friend Mr Google to see what other people had to say on the subject. As it turns out, most girls seem to prefer when guys call instead of text. Or, that is to say, girls who like receiving phone calls are louder at acknowledging their comfort (or "dis") than girls who feel differently. Perhaps my friend and I are among the minority of women--those who are easily content with the impersonal texting but not so easily placated with hearing a voice attached on the other end. Maybe we are both more independent thinking and like to have our space and our time to respond when and how we want with proper thought. Or, maybe we're both control freaks.

To the right I have added a poll, and I'd love to know what you think be you man, woman or six-legged octopus. What is the best way to communicate given the choice?

Saturday, September 3, 2011

When are extensions more than just that?

Let's talk extensions.

For the past six weeks, I have had beautiful, long, dark brown and maroon extensions in my hair.  They were a fun shade of maroonish-pink and hung all the way down my back.  I'm sure it's taboo to write about something artificial that one has attached to one's body...but heck, I'm not shy about such things! Girls do all sorts of things to enhance, heighten or otherwise alter our appearance.  With all that effort, we may as well talk about it and get five more minutes worth of use out of the experience. 

Putting the extensions in took EIGHT hours.  That's right.  Eight.  My amazing friend Clarissa Chatterton laboriously put them in, strand by strand, piece by piece.  When she was done, it looked incredible!  And, even better, with long, thick hair like that all over my head, I felt pretty dang (feel free to insert a stronger word than dang...because pretty sure that's how I felt..) sexy. 

The problem, though, with having all that extra hair on my head comes with the maintenance of it.  It wasn't too awful to comb, and when I wasn't out and about I would keep it in a braid or a pony tail.  I thought I was doing really well with keeping it all clean and combed and arranged (and if you saw it and thought differently, don't tell me, I don't want to know...).  The last few days, however, I've been feeling like it was about time to call my hair extension adventures quits.  Lately the sewn in ones have been sagging, the keratin ones yanking out clumps of hair, and the hair in between rows matting.  So, tonight on my way home from work, I stopped at Sally's Beauty Supply and bought myself a bottle of pure acetone.

Now that they're out (2 1/2 hours later....), I'm amazed by how little hair I actually have--and how short it is!  Already, I'm looking for ways to fluff and spray and puff it up to at least make it look a little fuller.  I'm thinking about going for the sexy "just out of bed and a little messy" look. 

So, now, here's my question:  What lengths does the average woman (you) go to to feel beautiful?

I consider myself a to be a fairly mid-maintenance woman.  Beauty and extras beyond fixing my hair and a quick spritz of makeup are recreational--I definitely enjoy it, but it's not necessary to my existence and happiness.  I know that some girls spend hours each week painting their nails or with face masks or other things--which is awesome if you choose to spend your time that way...but at the heart of it, what are we hoping to gain? 

For me, I love feeling sexy.  I know...I know...that's kind of awkward coming from a girl my size...but I feel that every single day of your life you should, as a woman, feel sexy and beautiful and desirable no matter how your hair looks or what you're wearing. 

Another question: At what point does "trying" become trying too much and turn attractive into "un"?  And what can a single working girl do to combat such ill-fated choices in beauty?