Am I that disconnected with the world?

I fully admit to being a sarcastic, obnoxious human being. Some people I know might disagree with my chosen definition of my demeanor, but sometimes it is the whole truth.

I try not to be mean-spirited with my sarcasm. What good would that do for anyone? I also try not to be too complicated with it. Lately, though, I wonder if everything I say is going over people’s heads.

In recent weeks, I haven’t exactly been having a stellar time. So when someone out in the world politely asks me how I am, giving them a completely honest answer would take hours, and, as Sweet Brown puts it, ain’t nobody got time for that. My chosen response on these days, is a simple, but clear,  “just ducky”. Or at least, I think it’s clear, as in  my sarcasm is clear. The following conversation always informs me otherwise. A nurse at a doctor’s office told me she was happy to hear I was doing well. A clerk at a store told me that was great (although she gets the benefit of the doubt because who really pays attention to the answer to that question when you’re working retail). A hostess at a restaurant was so pleased to hear something other than “good” and “okay” and she wanted to hear things like that and “fantastic” and ” superb”. As the hostess is blathering on and on about mundane responses versus punchy ones, my friend and I are just looking at each other with knowing eyes that say she clearly hasn’t picked up on what I really meant. I do acknowledge that it is hard to counter ducky with an appropriate response, but I have never not heard the word ducky used sarcastically. Am I missing something? Just how much of what I say goes over the heads of the people around me.

I take comfort in the fact that the people I talk to the most seem to understand me, or are very good at pretending that they do. I do tend to associate more with a group of people who are incredibly jaded, disdainful, and sarcastic all in their own ways. I imagine that has something to do with why we get along. I am a touch concerned about how I am getting along with people who are not necessarily in that circle of people. Am I not connecting with people and just not realizing it?

In any case, please note that the use of the word “ducky” in response to the question “How are you?” and its variations is usually said with sarcasm and should be treated as such.

Life is story the you are reading as it is being written

Slowly but surely, book stores are becoming a thing of the past. We can thank the glorious advent of technology. Namely, ebooks. I greatly dislike ereaders and will never willingly purchase one. I miss the bookstore that used to be five minutes from my house. I loved just going there when I had nothing to do and just wandering around the shelves and exploring. I love reading. And I think about how people wish their lives were like a certain kind of book.

My life could pretty much be Nicholas Sparks’s next best seller. That is, if I can get the ending right. I have never actually read one of his novels. I have seen one of the movies based off one of his novels. (And it wasn’t The Notebook. I have yet to be subjected to that film. I have no desire to see it at all. Call me a communist, but Ryan Gosling just doesn’t do it for me.) The only bright side to the potential of my life being like one of his novels is that they always have a happy ending. Well, a somewhat realistic happy ending. Yes, they ride off into the sunset, but there is some twist that might actually happen in real life. What I don’t like about this idea is that his characters have to be so unhappy before they get their happy ending. I mean, I am dealing with such unhappiness now, but that doesn’t mean I am enjoying it. And there is still no 100% certainty that I am going to get a happy ending. And that is where things diverge from his plot line. But I suppose his characters don’t always know that they are going to get a happy ending.

I wonder what other people think of their lives. I doubt anyone wishes for their lives to be a Stephen King novel. Who, in their right minds, wants to be Jack Torrance? There have been a few days in recent months where fog has been really bad in my area, and all I can think is “Well, this is just a Stephen King novel waiting to happen.” It is an odd thing to think, I know, but the one or two times I have said it out loud, it has amused those around me. And I know people wish they lived in the wonderful wizarding world created by J.K. Rowling. And I can understand why. To be able to live in a world where waving a wand and saying the right words can produce a desired result would be lovely for anyone. And with that particular series, you discover a new detail every time you read them.

I have heard of people wishing their lives were like Twilight. Alright, I have only heard girls wish their lives were like Twilight. Having a degree in psychology, I could write an entire dissertation about what is wrong with the relationship dynamics in that book series, let alone a single blog post. It encourages girls to not have lives outside of their boyfriends and tells them that it’s okay for their best friend to sexually assault them. I have read this series because I wanted to see what all the fuss was about. And honestly, I find the whole series to be an insult to any female with a brain. I could write a whole post about why Twilight is bad without even attacking the writing itself. However, it would become more of a rant than a post and no one wants that.

I love to read because it allows me to immerse myself in a world created by someone else. Some of the details are almost painfully spelled out, while some are up to me to imagine. I can escape to somewhere else for a little while and have the option of going back whenever I want. Books really need to come back in style.

I wonder if losing your identity is anything like losing your religion

It is an interesting world we live in these days. People post the smallest goings on and expect the rest of the world to be excited about the fact that they just made a ham sandwich. Oddly enough, I am not impressed by such behaviors. However, it isn’t exclusive to just food. People drag on about anything, and it appears to be ten times worse if they are one half of a couple.

While this isn’t exclusive to just my generation, it is the age group where the problem is the most highly concentrated. Everything thing has to go up on Facebook or Twitter. “Seeing this movie with the the love of my life!!!!” “Spending the day with the best thing that has ever happened to me!!!!” “Lounging around with the best boy/girlfriend ever!!!!!!!!!!” So many exclamation points. I get it. You’re with your significant other and you’re happy. Is that really an excuse to abuse punctuation? I think not.

Then there are albums worth of pictures. Each one snuggled up to that person. Or kissing that person. Or sitting in the other person’s lap. The list goes on. Do we need photographic evidence of every single moment the two of you share? And does every adventure require a picture of the two of you kissing while you’re there? Ladies and gentlemen, I have the answer, and it is a stern no.

And finally, there are the wall posts. The constant posting to the other’s Facebook wall or Twitter feed about how wonderful the other is and how lucky they are that they found each other. And oh my gosh, I miss you so much, I haven’t seen you in six hours and the next two and a half until I see you next are going to kill me!!!! (Again with the f*cking exclamation points?!) Or where would I be in this world without you, you are so amazing!!! People, your significant other is not the only one that sees those posts. Everyone that that person is friends with sees them. And I promise you that no one likes them. Most of the world doesn’t appreciate public displays of affection unless you’re getting engaged, married, or renewing your vows. Other wise, all other forms of PDA are just annoying and make you look ridiculous. Posts are only appropriate if something horrendous has happened and you want to thank them publicly for being so supportive. Kind of like when my father got home from the hospital after he had a heart attack, but he thanked my mother, myself, my siblings, and everyone who offered kind words and thoughts for him while he was in the hospital. Still quite a large difference. Anything else can be left to a private form of communication. Like a private message on Facebook or Twitter. Or email. Or text message. Or a phone call. OR LOOKING THEM IN THE EYE AND SAYING IT TO THEIR FACE.

What I want to know is when did it become okay for your whole life to be about your significant other? I am not talking spouse or partner here, I am talking about a boyfriend or girlfriend that you are not living with. When did it become okay to allow ourselves to become completely wrapped up in the other person that we don’t have our identities anymore? Why is it okay for it to be John & Jane and not John or Jane? In the Facebook generation, we rarely look at couples as individual people because they don’t present themselves as individual people. They present themselves as a unit and you can’t have one without the other. I can never just invite my sister places anymore. She has to bring her boyfriend, too. Do you have any idea how much I miss my sister? And the woman lives with me! But I can’t tell you the last time I had a day or an adventure with my sister to myself. I have friends who are the same way. Anytime I try to hang out with a girlfriend, she asks if it is okay to bring her boyfriend. I am so tired of this that I just give in and say that it’s fine, but being a third wheel whether I am single or not makes me feel horrible. Why is me making this concession even an option? Am I really at an age where it is not okay to just hang out with a friend anymore if they’re in a relationship? When did this happen? Where was I when that rule was made?

These types of behaviors are particularly bad today. Valentine’s Day. I refuse to go on my Facebook today just because I don’t want to see the endless declarations of “love.” I understand that today was originally intended to celebrate love. But why do we need a specific day to celebrate love? Why can’t we celebrate love every day? Why do men and women need a specific day to do something special for their significant other? A mass regulated day for this makes the gesture forced and takes all the specialness out of it. Don’t you think your significant other would love it so much more and be so much more surprised by it if you gave them that gift on a day where they weren’t expecting it? If it was something really special, than then that day becomes a special day for the two of you, and a memory you can always look back on and go “Remember the random day that this happened?”

Fuck Valentine’s Day. Surprise me on a random Tuesday in May with a fancy dinner and flowers. And then tell me you love me for maintaining my own identity and not coating my Facebook in sickly relationship sweetness.

Dear Forehead, I hate you.

In the ultimate chick flick, Steel Magnolias, Dolly Parton’s character said “Time marches on, and eventually you realize it’s marching across your face.”

Oh, Dolly. People should really take you more seriously.

I loathe my forehead these days. I really do. For one simple reason. I am in my early 20s. I look like I am in my early teens. Except when it comes to my forehead. For the most part, the skin of my forehead is pretty clear. Not a whole lot of acne or other potentially unsightly blemishes. So I’m not moving in reverse on the age scale.

Unfortunately, my forehead is a little ahead of the game.

If one were to look at my forehead for more than four seconds, one might take note of two blooming wrinkles spreading across the flesh spawning the space between my eyebrows and hairline. They aren’t deep enough that people question them. But they are deep enough that my sister has felt the need to comment on them. And they are right where my forehead creases when I hold an incredulous expression on my face.

And oddly enough, it is making me question myself. This is the only sign of wrinkles on my face thus far. Am I too skeptical? Too sarcastic? Is there a flaw in my reaction to the world around me that has resulted in the premature development of wrinkles on my forehead?

Thanks for the self-doubt, forehead. Like I couldn’t handle that on my own.

You can try to argue sun exposure, but there is no merit for that. I don’t spend much time in direct sunlight, for starters. The make up I wear has a 15 SPF, so I’m never completely bare in the any kind of outdoor light. One look at my fair skin will tell you that I don’t go tanning, despite prodding from some people who insist that it “just makes you glow.” So telling me to avoid sun light just translates to not changing my routine.

The only other explanation may be the way I sleep, according to various sources, including WebMD (I should really get the hell off the internet once in a while). Apparently, sleeping on your face leads to a furrowed brow. I know I sleep on my face. People who have seen me sleep have told me as much. There is one problem with this explanation. I never start off sleeping on my face. It’s when someone comes into my room to wake me or drop off something on my dresser that they see me sleeping on my face. And once I’m asleep, how do I stop myself from rolling over onto my face? I realize I should probably look into a way to darken my room, because my bedroom has two exterior walls, each with it’s own window. And the corner where these two walls meet faces east. So my natural instinct when the sun is up before I am is to bury my face in a pillow (or three). I don’t know of an option that prevents me from rolling onto my face. At least nothing that isn’t painfully binding.

I moisturize. I keep my face clean. I use mineral make up. I don’t sit in outdoor light without some kind of protection on my face. So what’s the deal, forehead? Why this desire to make me even more self-conscious than I already am?

Foreheads are jerks.

What does all my volunteer work have to do with selling rental cars?

Given that I’ve just finished college, I am obviously looking for gainful employment. Something I can use to start saving money to get my own place. I realize that the average person doesn’t work at the same place for their entire career, so I am not necessarily looking for a forever home. Naturally, I’ve added my resume to those fancy job search websites you see commercials for.

That might have been a mistake.

Since doing that, I have gotten (metaphorical) piles of emails from various recruiters whose places of business have absolutely nothing to do with anything on my resume. I have received word from people who sell power tools and technology. Nonspecific technology, at that. At least six emails about how I am the exact right person to sell rental cars. All from the same rental car company. A couple from the same person. The same email. Every time. You would think they would get the clue that I don’t want to sell rental cars. You’d be wrong. I have gotten phone calls from people who think I would be great for selling insurance or doing banking.

From these clues, you would think that my resume had something to do with business.

Again, you’d be wrong.

The title of my resume on these websites is my name and “Non-Profit Professional.” I majored in Psychology. I didn’t go to a business school. I can’t even list all the organizations and clubs I have volunteered with because it would become silly and redundant. I want to work with a cancer advocacy organization or a group who aides special needs children. An organization preferable geared toward people (but I’m flexible on that point). I want absolutely nothing to do with the three different insurance companies who have contacted me. I don’t want to get rich quick. I know I am not going to make a profit in my line of work, but I don’t care. I want to help people in a way that doesn’t ask for anything in return. The closest I have gotten to working in the business world were mall jobs I held throughout high school and the start of college. I don’t want to work somewhere with shareholders. I also really don’t want to sell rental cars.

I also have a bone to pick with the aforementioned job search websites. Who in their right mind classifies working as a bartender at the local Olive Garden as working in the non profit industry? Again, I am aware that no one really makes a profit working as a bartender at the Olive Garden. However, last I checked, Olive Garden didn’t hold a 501(c) tax status. Seriously, every time it comes up in a search, it makes me want to smack someone. Preferably, the person who lists Olive Garden in the non profit category.

Anyone happen to know a non profit organization in the tri-state area looking to hire a young woman with spunk, drive, and enthusiasm? The first two I can find for them on Craigslist. That last one is all me. (Or if they want to hire a young woman who really wants to work, I can totally help them out with that, too.)