Wednesday, December 7, 2011

The Neighbor I Wish I Knew

Well folks I am back on the blogging worlds radar after three months of solitude and I would like to discuss the topic of neighbors. Throughout my life I have always enjoyed people watching, in particular my neighbors. Call me crazy but I don't think I am the only one who has a particular taste for checking up on their hood from time to time. 

On one particular occasion dating all the way back to August I came across a truly worthy neighbor to watch. Now, before i get into the neighbor we call "Bag Lady" i would like to say that everything i show and say is truly for my love of her and neither jeer nor jest will change what i really feel about this lady.



Everyday that i have lived in this fancy shmancy apartment I have seen The Bag Lady. Her ritual begins approximately at 4:30 pm. She slowly walks down the steep hill carrying two filled grocery bags (we never figured what was actually in the bags) along with one over-sized purse. She then preceeds to gently set the bags down, assume the running position, with one big enhale she jolts forward and begins her quick ascension toward the unknown corners of our streets. The process is then repeated again, and again, and again.She comes rain or shine every day of the week.  Indeed the first time we saw the spectacle we thought it was somewhat of a joke but after watching this woman progress in strength and character along with her unwillingness to ever give up has made me gain a hefty load of respect.

Kudos to neighbors and to those peeping from the inside world out. 

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

A letter to my Cherokee ( finished version,sorry)

A girl with dark curled hair, a frilly pink shirt and hands fumbling calls her roommate with an exasperated voice yelling into the wireless phone " I, I don't know what to do it just shut off! I was on the hill and now, now its just stopped! Find me! Just find me okay, I am by the temple on a hill or something, a few gasps of air are streamed through the phone. There is a car coming, oh man! Just HURRY ok!"

I am that brown headed girl, and yes, I was a little out of sorts, some might even say i was panicking, and yes, that THING that "just shut off" was my ever so troublesome car. Since day one of coming up to Logan I have been fighting the beast of burden. Let us just name my Jeep Natasha for now because Natashas' always seem to be of some kind of annoyance, disturbance, or mischief making from my experience. So anyway Natasha had been making weird noises and of course i was worried about her. I had never had any problems with Natasha before, why was she revolting against me? Why did the air conditioning go out when i was so very hot? Do you like to watch me sweat? Why Natasha, WHY?  I pushed her too hard i think. She was tired of me putting dents in her and not apologizing, She was tired of totting friends and dogs around. She was tired of me bathing her twice a year, and she definitely did not like leaving her home in Ogden. I know i havent filled her  tank up since the day i graduated high school. But really I get it. Its hard sometimes. But was it necessary to fully and completely give up on me? I think NOT!


Anyway Natasha taught me a lot. Who knew what an engine light was. Or that you should put coolant in the radiator when it runs out. Or that there is an overflow container for extra coolant. Or that you should add water to coolant. Or what a thermostat is. Or a gasket. Or where the engine even is under your hood. But ladies and gentlemen i would like to say boisterously and with excessive cockiness that after many youtube sessions I was the one that changed that broken thermostat. I confidently strutted  down mainstreet to O'Reilly's and bought myself a 6 cylinder gasket, and I got out that socket wrench and greased up my hands and I did restore everything to its original state!... however  hard it is to believe I suppose God needed to humble me further still. Good ole Natasha barely made it to the temple(ironically) before seizing up on me.

Bless the little man who helped me push Natasha up the hill. Bless his cute little wife who took my wheel( despite the fact that she hadn't driven a day in her life and made a few key mistakes such as: pressing the brake the whole time we were trying to push the car). Bless the friend of the cute couple, Bubba who leaped out of his moving truck to join in our pushing efforts. And bless my father for getting the car towed and paying for the new engine. Finally, bless my Jeep Cherokee for all her hard work and for putting up with me for so long. I promise if you give me another chance i'll do better. Amen.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Sometimes Children are Strange

A great portion of my life has been spent dedicated to the care of other peoples children. I have grown to truly understand children in a facet of ways. I know how to make a vicious sibling rivalry turn into a game of giving compliments. I know how to get a kid to eat his peas, put on his shoes, and wipe his own butt, with a mere few  words. I have even been able to get a full length massage accompanied with a dance performance from a riotous bunch. I dare say that even Max and the Wild Things would weld to my power. Although, no matter how much time i spend with kids i still can't get over some of the bizarre things that they do and say. 
For example 
Today i babysat three bobbling, brown headed, girls. They seemed a bit reluctant at first to let me into their world but fear not, i crept in with coloring books and barbies (works every time). Soon enough i was speaking chinese with one girl and laughing with another. After the 30 minute intro i was presented with a somewhat bizarre token. One girl proudly showed me their pet frog. However it was not, oh what should we say, uh uh functioning..? In fact it had not been functioning for quite sometime. The poor little pet, Spotty, had been frozen in the freezer (placed in that small little hole where your ice is supposed to come out of...kind of gross) for the last 5 months. I curiously asked if their mother had been saving it for dinner, this threw them into a fit of hysterical laugh. But i put my foot down and said that this poor little frog needed a proper burial. It just wasn't right to have him frozen month after month while his assassin got to splash around happily in a tank looming nearby. So we set out and found a nice plot of earth to relieve the poor creature in. After the frog was properly placed 6ft under i made sure he got a few last words from each of the three girls. Child 1: " I liked Spotty because she got fat, and had babies, and ate a lot of food, and then ate her babies, and loved her husband." Child 2: " I liked Spotty because, I love her, and babieees, and love, wishin bye bye uh ha nanana (and then some more garbled gibberish which was not entirely comprehensible)". Child 3: "I like Spotty because my frog got to kill her". 


Not quite the funeral i think Spotty was hoping for but on the bright side freezing a body does preserve quite well.


Monday, May 2, 2011

A nightmare of all nightmares

Last night i awoke at 4 am. My breathing was short and my palms were sweaty. What might have caused this occurrence, you might ask? Well my dear friend it was one of those things that makes kids look under their bed before the go to sleep at night, its was one of those things that makes the shadows of the night turn into monsters, it was one of those things that i simply must share...it was a nightmare. I haven't had one of these nightmares in such a long time that i would estimate that it has been well over 4 years. Now, i know i have you hooked and you are asking yourself what i could have possibly been dreaming about that got me into such a hot mess. So i'll tell ya

I dreamt that i slept through one of my finals and that i wasn't going to get an A.

The End
Seriously...

This really seemed to deepen my conscious perspective on my true nerdiness ( refer to last blog to be persuaded even more). I used to joke around about some of my quirks like loving lord of the rings or being able to caste as many spells as a first year at hogwarts but this "nightmare" has without a doubt proven that in fact i, Ryleigh Nicole Allred am officially out of my mind

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

You know you are a dweeb when...

  • you spend an hour in solid delight watching some people (who might actually be more nerdy than yourself) dual with handmade foam swords... and later become jealous when you find out they all have code names like Red Beard and the Great Duke of Kensington 
  • find yourself being disappointed when re-runs of Full House no longer come on television
  • you get nervous to prank call the college radio station ( which only has two listeners)
  • enjoy making lists
  • double the length of your paper for class because..well, you just can't let yourself cut history short
  • you wear earphones that don't work just so you have an excuse to ignore passerby's
  • you talk to yourself in poetry and think that one day you'll be the next Jay-Z
  • you read textbooks and peer reviewed articles because you want to 
  • you find yourself rocking out to Mozart, Bach, and Justin Timberlake 
  • when you start saying the word dweeb 
  • have a list of words you'd like to incorporate into your daily jargon( jargon: obscure and often pretentious language marked by circumlocutions and long words ) in the back of your notebook 
  • find yourself being used as a replacement for Websters Dictionary by people you are trying to make "casual" conversation with
  • start worrying for the GRE before you've even signed up
  • when you are guaranteed to be found in one of two places, your basement room or the library
  • one of your greatest worries is that you'll lose your USB
  • you spend 60% of your time on the computer, 30% of your time  being amused at your dog (who really isn't doing anything other than chewing his bone), and the other 10% thinking about how great life would be if a boyfriend robot would be invented. That way you could stop saying "Nooo.. i don't have a boyfriend yet, dad" and a one of a kind back massage would be only a button press away.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Racially Ambiguous



Today i received a text from a friend in one of my classes. She started off by asking if it was okay if she asked me a kind of weird question. Of course i was intrigued and insisted that she ask me. Her question was: What is your ethnicity? I chuckled lightly to myself not because i thought it was a weird question but quite the opposite. I have been asked this very same question on a fairly regular basis. Before i tell people "what i am",  i always like to have them give me a guess. Over the years i have racked up quite the amount of racial guesstimates. To be honest my ambiguity has been a peculiar trait for me over the years especially within the context of my travels. No matter where i go i can almost always blend into the crowd whether it be South America or somewhere in Asia.
Below are listed a few of my racial guesstimates
  • Mexican
  • Russian 
  • Thai
  • Native American 
  • Chinese 
  • African American 
  • Spanish
Somehow i have managed to encompass the globe in my face. Perhaps i should be the spokesperson to instigate world peace...



Monday, April 18, 2011

You know you're poor when...



You know you are a poor college student when you ________
 
  • are willing to camp outside of Chic-Fil-A in 30 degree weather just to get a couple of free sandwiches
  • refuse to go to a frat party because they are charging a ridiculous entrance fee of $1
  • let yourself be poked and prodded for 3 hours and finally get to have a straw size needle shoved into your vein for a solid 45 minutes just to make 20 bucks
  • start to see how many things you can squish on one paper so you can save money at the printing station
  • become a registered "delinquent" on the libraries registry because you don't ever pay for your over due books
  • you start wondering if you should flirt with more boys so you can get a free meal
  • Ramen noodles becomes your greatest technique for satiation
  • only shop at Walmart
  • let previously disgusting things slide by... a little mold on the bread eh, milk that expired three days ago, no biggie
  • start price checking fast food restaurants
  • drive slower than the elderly because you can't risk getting a ticket, and shot coasting saves gas
  • start contemplating if stealing an enormous roll of one ply toilet paper from the schools bathroom is too risky 
  • become grateful for as many babysitting opportunities as possible
  • start making a list of things you want to buy for the day when you have money

Thursday, April 14, 2011

A good beginning


They always say not to judge a book by its cover, but what about the first line? Well i recently stumbled across a list of 100 of the best first lines from novels. I couldn't resist sharing some of the beauty and creativity that people are blessed with. Enjoy the art of words...

  • He was born with a gift of laughter and a sense that the world was mad. - Raphael Sabatini, Scaramouche (1921)
  • A screaming comes across the sky. - Thomas Pynchon, Gravity's Rainbow (1973)
  • It was a bright cold day in April, and the clocks were striking thirteen. - George Orwell, 1984 (1949)
  • The sun shone, having no alternative, on the nothing new. —Samuel Beckett, Murphy (1938)
  • The sky above the port was the color of television, tuned to a dead channel. - William Gibson, Neuromancer (1984)
  • It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair. - Charles Dickens, A Tale of Two Cities (1859)
  • I am an invisible man. - Ralph Ellison, Invisible Man (1952)
  • Every summer Lin Kong returned to Goose Village to divorce his wife, Shuyu. - Ha Jin, Waiting (1999)
  • It was like so, but wasn't. - Richard Powers, Galatea 2.2 (1995)
  • The moment one learns English, complications set in. - Felipe Alfau, Chromos (1990)
  • We started dying before the snow, and like the snow, we continued to fall. - Louise Erdrich, Tracks (1988)
  • It was a pleasure to burn. - Ray Bradbury, Fahrenheit 451 (1953)
  • The human race, to which so many of my readers belong, has been playing at children's games from the beginning, and will probably do it till the end, which is a nuisance for the few people who grow up. - G. K. Chesterton, The Napoleon of Notting Hill (1904)
  • The past is a foreign country; they do things differently there. - L. P. Hartley, The Go-Between (1953)
  • I write this sitting in the kitchen sink. - Dodie Smith, I Capture the Castle (1948)
  • "When your mama was the geek, my dreamlets," Papa would say, "she made the nipping off of noggins such a crystal mystery that the hens themselves yearned toward her, waltzing around her, hypnotized with longing." - Katherine Dunn, Geek Love (1983)
  • The cold passed reluctantly from the earth, and the retiring fogs revealed an army stretched out on the hills, resting. - Stephen Crane, The Red Badge of Courage (1895)
  • Of all the things that drive men to sea, the most common disaster, I've come to learn, is women. - Charles Johnson, Middle Passage (1990)

Monday, April 11, 2011

Pep Talk froma 4 year old


I have two jobs but really no jobs at all. I donate plasma and i babysit from time to time. The later is a bit more enjoyable than the former. Anyway this last weekend i was babysitting my favorite little girl, Indi who is always good for a laugh. We got to have a late night of playing while the parents went out and enjoyed a party with old friends. Indi and I played a couple gambling games with fruit loops and corn pops, a couple guessing games, and rode a big overstuffed tiger named Raja. However, right when we were about to settle down and read The Little Red Hen I got a call from a boy. Indi, who is completely boy crazy at her young age of 4 years started to go crazy when she heard the boys voice! However, through her excitement she could barely squeak out a "hello"!!! Which was then followed by a mad dash to the corner of the room accompanied by a scream of utter delight. This really got her riled up and before i could return to the story of the small hard working hen i started to receive the pep talk. She stood triumphantly on the bed, fists clenched in the air " You have got to focus here! Really i mean come on focus!! YOU YOU you are having a big deal with this one! Where you live, I don't know, but you have got to learn! I CAN'T do this hair, i don't even care a vascally(not a word), i don't ask!!!! Tattle here, okay, you've got to focus! We have got to do things we have never done before! You've got to do just like those guy's! You know like the old man walking down the street, gets hit by a car? Focus! Listen to what i say! If you want to have more focus on whta you want to do you're going to have to do it in a more CLASSTTY( not a word) way and run's!!!!!"

What better words of wisdom could i ask for?

Monday, March 28, 2011

Do schools kill creativity?



I really loved this TED talk given by Sirken Robinson. " If you're not prepared to be wrong you will never create something new". "We are born creative and are then taught out of it". "We should see our children as hope"

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

How to build an adobe stove




Here is a photo visual of my experience building an adobe stove














































Saturday, March 5, 2011

Americanitis


As i was prepping myself for my psych history exam i ran acrossed a word that seemed to suit my mood.. "Americanitis". The condition has been explained as being a result of exhaustion of the central nervous system's energy reserves, which is attributed to modern civilization. The texts suggestion for recovery for women included absolutely no work for 6 weeks and a high fat diet(i can only assume they mean lots chocolate ice cream). For men the cure is travel and adventure! It all makes sense now. The sickening feel of the states, the claustrophobia of logan, my depleting mental capacity, and the undeniable urge to escape, it all adds up now. I do believe that i have had a bad case of chronic americanitis for quite some time.

In fact i have been getting asked on more occasions than i can remember about my next adventure. Everytime someone asks that i feel my heart which i do believe is already a few sizes to small crack a little...travel, adventure, freedom are all taboo words to me. The fact that i currently have $30 dollars to my name and incessant chiming of blackboard prompts reminding me of my next assignment, quiz, and exam in my ear gives me little reassurance that i will ever be able to travel again.

However lets be honest, for those that know me you know that travel is my deepest passion. I think about it more than is healthy. Although now i have something to blame it on which is this damn diseases, americanitis's fault. Can i really be blamed for wanting to leave? "It's not my fault, I'm sick!"

So, yes, its happening again... a new adventure, a new idea, another asian country has grasped my attention. Can i get a drum rollllll........The country this sick girl is eyeballing is the land of the Taj Mahal, the creators of the Kama Sutra, the culinary cuisine of all curry, the crazy, the boistrous, the religious, the outrageous, the beautiful, belly dancing, yoga practicing, the one and only India!




All who are suffering and plagued by the debilitating, debacle of a disease, join me on a quest of recovery!

namaste

Monday, February 21, 2011

Logan, the kinky, the kind, and the crazy

I recently found myself in a rut. Logans infamous inversion has begun to get the better of me and far too often i have felt the warm intoxicating breeze of adventure riding on my back trying to reel me in like fish on a hook. So instead of wallowing in my woes of being stuck in Logan i decided to revel in it. What is this little po-dunk town hiding? There had to be something exciting, intriguing, or at least bizarre somewhere in this town. Today was the day that i found a little bit of everything in Logan.
Lori and I explored logan by foot, we went up, down, and all around the town. We got to see lots of things from books printed in the 1300 to healing crystals, and beautifully carved pipes that made we wish i had a strong addiction for tobacco. We chatted and made connections with the homeless and gained insight from missionaries. We got free bread, we paid for empanadas. We charged through snow and crashed through abandoned warehouses.. but perhaps the most interesting part of the day was the point where i had a complimentary mint stuck in my hair after accidentally spitting it out after the shock of seeing the worlds largest dildo in a lingerie shop in logan utah.

I guess logan does have a bit of spunk after all


the end

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Traumatized via grocery store




What an odd title you might think. A grocery store, traumatizing? I must be mistaken you may be asking yourself.. no no my friend its true. Grocery stores have both embarrassed me and traumatized me, my last incident may have even left me with a bruise that hit more than my ego.

#1
There was a time when i was about 6 years old and i recall my mom handing me one of those monstrously sized glass jugs of spaghetti sauce; the ones a practical mother of 4 purchases thinking she'll use up quickly but never does... While i was standing there thinking wow i am such big girl, holding a thing of spaghetti sauce that matched me in width something happened. Perhaps it was an itch i had to scratch, or my constant clamy hands that finally got the better of me, or the cute store clerk that winked at me, but the precious pressed tomatoes slipped from my hands and before i could even register what had happened a thunderous shattering echoed down the aisles of frozen food and canned vegetables. Spaghetti sauce sloshed on the tiled floor like a bad case from special victims unit. Shards of glass stuck through the sauce in a slightly grotesque and unnatural way. Of course all of the stares from the general public also felt very unnatural especially for a shy middle child who rarely got any stares at all. Naturally i refused to accompany my mother to the grocery store for a solid year after that incident.

#2
There have been way too many incidents where i have either grabbed a stump of a leg thinking it was my mother or hopping on an unsuspecting citizens push cart thinking it was in fact my own.. Every time i looked up into the face of a garish woman a small electrical shock seemed to emanate through my body and leave a pink stain on my cheeks.

#3
One time i stole a Kit-Kat. It was in fact an honest mistake, and a simple slip up or should i say slip in-to my pocket. To say the least I didn't eat another kit kat for a solid 8 years after that from my nearly mortal shame.

#4
Valentines 2011. I had been having a fine valentines day. You know the usual, wollowing in my loneliness while i have to watch hundreds of thousands of couples snog(British term for kissing) and then trying to convince myself that in fact being single is in fact always better. Anyway my dear friend Natalie whom also happened to be single decided that we should treat ourselves to chocolate. I readily concurred with this idea. No Valentines day is complete without a single girl getting inebriated( intoxicated: i told you i liked words) by chocolate. We sped down to Smiths and walked directly to the candy aisle. It was one of those times where you were almost in awe of the beautiful of the colors and array of flavors the aisle had to offer you. We walked up and down the aisle multiple times figuring out just what was the perfect thing to binge on. I finally set my sights on the towering case of chocolate covered raisins. I raised my hand and ever so slightly caressed the case while i began to salivate like a Pavlovian dog. And just as my index finger glided across the plastic casing something came a jar. In fact the whole 3ft container came ajar, I saw the whole situation in slow motion. I was rained upon by raisins and got a good thump on the noggin from the container. Of course this caused quite the uproar with the staff. Within 12 seconds i found 1 manager and 2 low paid employees circling me. They swept the precious dried fruits into a dustbin while i just stood there unsure as to what was more red, my face or the blistering red hearts that seemed to be oozing out of the aisles. Well to say the least i grabbed 1/2lb of chocolate covered cinnamon bears as an alternate, and found myself a little peeved that they didn't at least offer me some of those fresh value reward points. Sure i probably cost them 7$ worth of damage but shouldn't a girl be compensated for extra ego humiliation on valentines day? Isn't it enough that i am eternally single?

Well i got my revenge, today i stole one organic chocolate covered raisin from the bin, i guess my pilfering skills from the kit kat days hasn't left me.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Men Make Love to Guitars


Silence filters through the crowd and moves along the wooden walls sculpted into acoustical perfection. The light from the stage crew gleams off of the mahogany and rosewood guitars almost mocking the audiences for their drab wardrobes and dulled skin. An man with the looks of a 14 year old given his crew cut and tightly buttoned dress shirt peaks his head outside of the stage door and gives the crowd a look of sly amusement. He then quietly walks onto stage and situates himself in the single chair. He sheepishly looks up and announces the name of his first tune and without so much as another word he began to play. His confidence on the guitar is the embodiment of everything his personality seemed to be lacking in. His hands moved like a ballerina or an abnormally slinky caterpillar crawling infinity up, down, and side to side. These hands could slide up and down the slender neck of the guitar within a single intake of breath and dance from fret to fret with the ease of the sun setting on any given day. I nearly felt like he was a magician for how he mystified me with his optical illusions. His fingers moved with steady grace but the sound emanating was something more like firecrackers or the worlds best tap dancer. For a man who spoke so little he sure can make a guitar sing. After a few masterpieces his compadre came onto the scene, a local guitar professor. This is where things took an interesting turn. The professor who remains anonymous( perhaps its because i forgot his name, or maybe its because i have an unlawful attraction to him) any-who he was a brilliant opposite of our dear other guitarist. The dualism they created was like an oxymoron. This new creature was tall and built with his shirt unbuttoned one button to far, his curly hair would frequently require a shake of the head to get it out of his eyes, and he had an ease about him that seemed to make everyone relax into their seats a few inches further. New sexy man was also very talented at the guitar. The combination of the two of them had a phenomenal effect on me.. i was blown away. New man also had this strange orgasmic grunt that would come out every so often, unannounced throughout the performance. These moments of passion seemed to hit when he could just no longer stand how great the moment on the stage, jamming like he was back with his boys in his parents dusty garage was. A couple of covers of Jimi Hendrix and Sting were incorporated into the classical concert and i seemed to fall even more in love with the whole situation. However, it made me wistfully think about my own guitar that had been collecting dust in the corner of my room. Perhaps today i will play, perhaps i will play again the next day, and perhaps i will enjoy my own music so much that i will develop my own, unannounced, grunts of happiness.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

My Interview with Love


There was a sequence of events today that led me to the impending question that is soon be arising on everyones mind what with the whole Valentines Day and what not coming up...and that is LOVE. That's right ladies and gents, Ryleigh is talking about love.

The day started rather uneventfully but took a turn when i received my first "Unknown" call in weeks. I was rather bored and decided this unknown caller deserved an answer. I was pleasantly surprised when i heard an unnaturally high pitched male voice with a thick Chinese accent. Without a second syllable uttered i had labeled the unknown caller as James Chen, an unforgettably lovable and.. flowing student from my days in China ( yes flowing, you'd have to know the fella but he has somehow perfected the art of incorporating interpretive dance into his every action). We chatted about this and that but James wanted to get to the heart of all things pertinent, LOVE. He asked me a question that really seemed to stump me.. " Where is your true love?" hmmmm well uh uh goood question James is about all i could muster. I don't know if i stumbled on the question because i didn't know if i was listening to some Walt Disney movie or because i too wondered where my true love was. Non the less i had no reply, which made me start thinking about love.

The day progressed and i found myself finger painting and making valentines cards with a four year old. She began to tell me about her true love, the handsome boy at school. I asked what he looked like and she drew me a picture of a green guy with pink eyes, indeed he was handsome! She then drew another character with curly locks which she explained as herself. Without a spare minute for analyzing the drawing she instructed me to carefully watch as she drew one long line from Curly and another long line from Sexy Green Guy. Then a small lump formed between the lines. "Did you see that!?!" "You know what they are doing!?!".....uh holding hands i bravely suggested. "YES, see that means they are in love!"

Well i seem to be lacking in knowledge of love so i decided making this curly 4 year old my guru. I asked her what you should say to someone when you love them. Her response was " Tell them you love someone, but you won't tell who because its a secret." Hmmm seems like decent advice.. i hear playing the mystery card on guys makes you more desirable or at least that's what page 32 of Teen Magazine told me. Later that night Curly even let me have some alone time to kiss my pretend boyfriend, the oven. If only adults could be as thoughtful as kids.

I can say that i have never been in "LOoooVVVee" and quite frankly i am starting to wonder if it is a wonderful hoax or a ploy by the government to boost the economy for the ever failing flower industry. I might be losing faith that love exists and no i really would prefer not to get 1,000 testimonials assuring me that love is real. And yes yes i know i am but the ripe young age of 21 but I would eventually like to catch the love bug and see what all the hype is all about so, maybe, just maybe, one day i'll find my own green skinned pink-eyed guy of my own that i can hold hands with and know that that means love.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

2,240 calories 88 grams of fat

Goals are an interesting thing. What sparks us to want to accomplish that one specific thing? What happens when we don't accomplish it? And in this situation what happens when we do accomplish it? Why do we find marking a little X next to a list of wishes and wants so rewarding? To be frank i haven't got a clue as to why i thought that this..this of all things , would be a good idea and something worth accomplishing.

Somewhere along the line in the last few weeks I decided that I needed to be able to say that i had eaten a whole pizza once in my life. I mentioned this "grand" idea to my friend Fuzz (yes, its a peculiar nickname). He seemed to get obsessed with it and was convinced that this 5 ft 5 girl couldn't possibly finish it. Think again! I don't like failure and despite the fact that i probably gained a few pounds last night I DID IT. Yes i did look like i was four months pregnant after, and a few of you did get a nice little photo sent via text late last night. Yes i did down my whole days worth of caloric intake in one siting. Yes i did have a few vomit burps. Yes your right i probably will never eat pizza again. Yes i think that my body could possibly shut down in the next few hours, and yes i am quite hungry for breakfast. So there fuzzy wuzzy. So there little list of things, I get to take another one of you out. So there ..... flat stomach, you are soooo there now

Thursday, January 27, 2011

TRIBAL ELECTRICITY

From about 9 am to 6pm the Rickety House (aka my home) was left without electricity. It was funny to see how completely helpless we felt without electricity. Microwaves, toasters, fridges, freezers, stoves, and TVs were all out of business for the day. I kept thinking how utterly pathetic i was for how much my life depends on electricity. I kept giving talia "what if" scenarios and without hesitation i would answer my own question hoping to convince myself that i had any kind of common survival skills.
"What if our power never turned back on?"
"We would all move into the same room together and cook diner over a fire in the drive way...and we would eat canned food..(oh wait our can opener is electric)... what would all the old people do if their power went out.. thats scary, maybe we could sleep in Ryans bunk bed....what if...."
Talia merely looked at me and said.."Or we would just get a hotel". That girl right there is smart. so much for my survival skills.

This experience got me thinking about my travels. Which frankly feels like a dream, perhaps a good movie, or an interesting book by this point. But it made me think about the rest of the world out there and how not every child plays video games all day, not every person has an Iphone and apps that can tell you what kind of animal tracks you are following, not everyone has an opportunity for education, and not everyone even has a a roof over their head.

This summer i volunteered in a small village in the hillside of northern Thailand. Two to three times a week i would hop in the back of a rusty old pick up truck and drive 30 minutes through the city, around florescent green rice fields, and up up up to the small village of Ban Apat. The people of this village live in bamboo huts and children play it dusty streets, pigs and chickens walk around the village (Akha people believe that animals have spirits and they treat them as family). I have never worked harder than i worked in that village. We helped build a natural medicine clinic and built the villages first stove! Most of the villagers use open fires in their homes which can be very detrimental to their health. In fact it is the third leading cause of death in third world countries. They had really big hearts in this village but very little materialistic items. A stove for the community was a huge deal. The village elders helped me along the whole way with the project and the first use of the stove was for their festival! Anyway, be grateful for electricity and the ease of the American life. We sure have a lot here and sometimes its easy to forget.


Here a few videos of what its like to live the Akha life.



video video

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

END OF THE WORLD




Recently i have begun contemplating 2012. It seems that most of the world has forgotten that we all only have one more year left to live. I ask myself, why are we in school? Shouldn't we be building bomb shelters, taking life survival classes, and perhaps..perhaps trying to instigate a little world peace. I mean really wouldn't that be grand if the whole world decided, hey, we might all implode on ourselves in less than 11 months why don't we try getting along for once. If we can't manage any of that the least we should do is go crazy, spend all our money and make the best of what we got, right? Well as for myself i am a bit perturbed about the doomsday date that the Mayans assigned. December 21, 2012. That means i officially will be having the worst birthday of my life, considering that my birthday is the tomorrow of the end of the world.. December 22... shucks i always thought 22 would be a good year for me. Instead i will be spending it fighting off pestilence, encroaching famine, and at least 3 different packs of wild animals. Maybe now would be the best time in my life to let it all go, maybe run away to some foreign land, maybe i'll dable in learning the dark arts(who knows maybe we all are muggles and Voldemort is making his comback, at least i'll be on his side), maybe i'll try to break a world record, maybe i'll finally learn how to play an instrument, maybe i'll write a poem that means something to you, maybe i'll eat the worlds most decadent things, maybe i'll make a difference, maybe i'll forget about what's good for me and just do what sounds good to me, maybe i'll stop caring about the future and live for today, maybe just maybe i'll do all of this, get away with it, and live to see my 22nd birthday!

Monday, January 24, 2011

WORDS

Below is a short video about words. Pay attention to how the scenes melt and morph from one word to the next. Really a great video created by NPR.

Side note: I try to pick up some new vocab every week to expand my persona of being an "intellectual" . The words I liked/picked up this week from a couple of my professors were...
ignoramus=fool (now aren't you curious what i was learning about)
superlative=exceeding all else

WORDS

Sunday, January 23, 2011

a testament to travel... after being caged

Well its been a number of months since i have written. In lue of the name of my blog " A Testament to Travel" i felt as though writing while merely sitting up in Logan would be a crime. However i have just recently come to the conclusion (mind you Beethoven is playing and the climax of the song just happened to make this light bulb moment even more pertinent ) that my lack of traveling can also be a testament as to why travel is so perfect, amazing, titillating, and what i seem to live for.

If i could for a brief moment explain to you the dreariness of logan and the monotony of daily life up here i am assured that just about anyone would pity me and instantly throw me a wad of cash (if you do happen to have this urge i am sure you can write it as a 501 c3 tax deductible donation). My daily life currently consists of sleeping in until 8 where i am awoken by the sighing and ho humfing that my 3rd roomate, Koda, the puppy likes to make because no one will indulge him in a wrestling match. On the days that he is not walking around like a put out Stepford wife he is lapping at my face until it is soaked in tuna fish saliva.

I then eat my golden puffs cereal with nearly expired wal-mart milk and get dressed in the dark. Classes run by fairly smoothly but i constantly seem to be berating myself for wandering mind. Sometimes i sketch pictures of my professors in their animorph form (ex:half man have mouse). My day continues with what i have assured myself to be as the best sandwich(wheat toast, mayonnaise, avocado, pepper, mesquite turkey, sauteed mushrooms, cheddar cheese, and another piece of wheat toast). The perfected sandwich is then followed by perhaps another bowl of cereal or something sweet which has become a rather poor habit instilled in me from my family. " No meal is complete unless it is capped off with a little sweet treat". Grandpa always insists that if there isn't room for desert than you must simply stand, give your belly a nice little shake, and a couple good pats. This seems to be one of the small tid bits of wisdom that has literally stuck with/to me. My evening is then finished off after a bit of chit chat with roommates and a quick browse through my assigned readings, finally ending the day with a nice cathartic meeting with Gossip Girl.
Now if you haven't actually watched Gossip Girl you might not think anything particular about it or make any rash judgments about my character...but you can basically break the television show into 3 parts which circle around a cast of upper eastsiders in New York. 1. there is a circle of friends who seem to swap sexual partners like horny high school students swap spit 2. friends backstabbing eachother with rumors spread through the omnipotent Gossip Girl 3. and a whole lotta of posh parties. ... in fact it is reaching that time and my partner in crime is here (Ryan Snow).. so here goes Gossip Girl episode 10.

Until next time
xoxo
Ryleigh