Life Updates

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The past few weeks have been a blur of Venezuelan, Thai and Japanese cuisine; mango peach boba smoothies; running errands. We drove around the city, past the haunted hotel and chic urban neighborhood, around uptown (funk you up) and back downtown. Sauntered through malls, munched on teriyaka, raced through arcardes. Talked about heavy topics in a pseudo Target living room for two hours. Later I named my boyfriend’s GoPro Susan as we drove around and pretended to narrate to an imaginary Youtube audience.

Last night he drove back to drop off my sweater and I gave him a huge piece of watermelon in thanks. Then we sat outside as he munched on watermelon and talked about ridiculous things and how you can see the stars with night vision goggles–the Big Dipper and Little Dipper (“I know my dips–“). It’s nice to sit under the stars and just talk.

Work’s been fun as well. I’ve been feeling chatty and I’ve always really liked the people. We went out for lunch two Friday’s ago. And two days ago I organized a little Boomerang video shoot for the office. My co-worker and I found props for the others to don, and then we all danced to the first day of summer. I do a good bit of writing and editing but other things as well, and I like that.

This weekend I’m seeing some friends. I hadn’t been feeling well the past week–had a cold–but I’m all recovered now. Before I was sick, though, we got all caught up over Thai, took the train downtown, sipped on smoothies and talked shows over flowers at Chick-Fil-A.

In general, life’s been pretty gouda.

Hope everyone’s doing okay! Been catching up on my favorite blogs. For a while I wasn’t on WordPress as much. I’d like to be more consistent, though, so I’m looking to post 3-4x a week, ideally MWF. Maybe more life updates here and there. Journal entries feel more halting, though I’m not sure why; I used to write about my day all the time.

Pause, Rewind

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“I wish I could pause time and moments like this without having to think about what’s next.”

Pause. The sun set. We were quiet. It felt like the moment when my friends and I were in Central Park, New York. We’d found a pond with ducks and turtles facing a castle in in the distance. So we sat on the rocks, quiet and contemplative, swimming in our own thoughts.

A blanket of peace descended upon us; I asked them what they were thinking. My friend said moments like this were rare. And maybe we wanted to achieve material success in life so we could buy intangible moments like this. Maybe we strived to make money, lots of it, so maybe we could buy peace, calm and happiness.

But wait–no–that didn’t sound right.

Disposable Diaries | Roll 1

God, I love shooting with disposable cameras. There’s an art to shooting film: getting perfect shots are a crapshoot, so experiment; humans are better photographed candid than posed; keep subjects far away so they won’t be blurred; there has to be just enough spontaneity to really make the photo.

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There’s an ineffable quality to disposables that I have difficulty putting into words. I can’t explain the beauty of it except that there just is.

For a while, I associated disposables with old school, low quality shit, elementary-school days. Times when phone cameras weren’t a thing, and real cameras were too valuable to let kids use. So they gave us these cheap hunks of plastic to take onto field trips and ruin. Fast forward ten years and now I love disposables; I drool over experimental film. And I don’t think I’m the only one enamored with film aesthetic. Polaroids, the high-end cool sister of disposables, are ‘in’. VSCO and Instagram, popular iPhone apps, emulate traditional film with filters, light leaks, etc. At some point, though, light leaks weren’t a deliberate digital effect on photos; they were film ‘mistakes’.

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Usually I find that the less planning, the better. Which, initially, might be counterintuitive. Unlike with digital cameras, you can’t photograph a hundred images and delete the worst. You have a limited number of shots, and you won’t know how they turn out until they’re developed. But meticulously planning photos, whether with iPhones or DSLRs, takes me out of the moment. I’m more concerned about the image than the scene, the post than the place. Film’s quick, immediate, doesn’t give me time to ruminate or edit or post. It’s more fun to keep an eye out for interesting places, odd angles, messy spaces, take the shot, and go.

Oftentimes, the photos turn out better than I’d have imagined. It’s a little hit-or-miss, but the best film photos are better than their digital counterparts.

Day One

My best friend and I, we’re both really sentimental and revisit our friendship stories every time we’re feeling giggly (or, in this case, sad).

Like the time I approached her while she was eating a bacon-egg-and-cheese sandwich outside of our first math class. Or the time she sat me down over frappes and demanded a committed friendship, firmly stating that we would not be “Monday-Wednesday-Friday lunch friends.” Or how I was initially terrified of the eight-missed-phone-calls and attempted to flee but ultimately failed. And how, on March 2nd, she said we were best friends. I choked up a little bit, tried to wave it off, was a bit flabbergasted. She was flabbergasted at my being flabbergasted–“what? Did you think we were acquaintances? We hang out all the time, eat together, go to class together, have sleepovers–how are we not best friends?”

I’ll admit I’m always alarmed to realize how much I and others care for each other. That was convoluted. But basically it takes an explicit verbal statement, “you mean a lot to me” (and vice versa) for me to realize that ah! yes! indeed, we mean a lot to each other.

Sea of Nostalgia

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I miss:

  • driving around aimlessly during the summertime, mostly saying little to nothing to each other. We wandered highways with everywhere to go and nowhere to be, slunk into pet stores, cigar store, malls, art museums. This one time we chased the sunset but the silhouette trees got in the way. Later, by the lake, we talked about life. It was too hot to think that day and I just remember dangling my feet in the water and saying some vague bullshit.
  • baking and chilling with my close guy friends. (”You mean you guys would get high?” No. Like, actual baking and chilling.) How absurdly exciting it was to scroll through recipes and glide through Kroger with flour in one hand, sugar in the other. When the cupcakes were ready I always felt superbly triumphant and as they baked we usually came up with stupid hypotheticals. We peppered our mundane days with fun hypotheticals, infused days of dry intelligence with smacking stupidity.
  • screaming about politics and current events. Coiling up on our beds, bellowing on about platforms and figures and candidates. Remember how, at age thirteen, we sat our way-too-young-to-vote asses on the grassy field and perused through what we knew of the candidates? At age fifteen we sputtered our similar views over coffee, all the while putting on an affect of something greater than ourselves. It’s strange to think that that was five years ago–it feels like it was maybe two, three years ago. Here, I stay mum on my views. But every time I go home, the lid on these views comes toppling off. Sometimes I forget that at some point in time there was no lid.
  • nitpicking our own minds with questions that swarmed with abstractions we pretended we could get a grasp on. Spider-webbing our way through the intricacies of our heads outside in the cold. We tackled feelings the way Freud tackled childhood, and did so over Chipotle bowls and glass bottle Cokes. We ping-pong-discussed so much utter shit that eventually we’d carry on like two ships sailing past each other in the night sea. It was ridiculous but it was fun. It was fun to not make sense and it was fun to say stupid shit and, most importantly, it was fun to fall over and laugh and laugh and laugh. Because at some point that was the only thing that communicated in our language of nonsense: laughing.

We’re mostly adults now (I guess). Doing adult-ish things.

It was a really strange moment when, over break, we lounged on bean bags on the floor of the supermarket and blurily pinky-promised to invite each other to our weddings. There were the equally strange moments of suddenly realizing what others/you meant to you/others after years and years and years. (You toss it out casually, you take hold of it casually. But then you internalize it less-than-casually: you made an impact on my life. Huh.) And while uni is fun and has its own salad bowl of lovely people, ’tis markedly different.

(orig. posted on tumblr)