A Ticket to the Fair

The crowd bustles past me. I stand here taking in the noise and blur of people rushing by. In front of me stands this giant sign pointing to the fair behind a grand fence. The iron work on the fence was beautiful and when the sun hit it, it shimmered like gold. I try to remember how I got there, but can’t put my finger on it. I start moving with the crowd that begins to filter into a line. Ahead I see another sign, “Please have your ticket ready for the attendant.” 

My hands immediately drops to my pants pockets. 

Oh no. Where is it?

I can’t even remember how I got here. I try to rack my brain. I need that ticket. I need to get into the fair. Where is my ticket? 

I notice every one around me has their ticket in their hand. I start asking people around me where they got theirs, but they just stare at me vacantly. I close my eyes and hear metal scraping and screeching. My eyes snapped opened. 

What was that?

I step out of place in line and everyone promptly moves up one pace. I then notice how quiet it’s gotten. There are no yelps of delight from children riding rides on the other side of the fence. The sun has hidden itself behind dull, grey clouds. I head towards the front, pushing into people aside. 

I just need one ticket. But why? I can’t remember why this is so important. I get to the ticket counter and the attendant peers at me over his spectacles. The name Peter was etched on his name tag in gold script. 

“Ticket?” 

“No, I don’t have a ticket. I don’t remember having one. I can’t remember how I got here.”

He considers this and simply says, “It’s not your time.”

Things go dark and I wake up to a man in a white coat staring at me with wide eyes, “She’s awake! Emily, do you know where you are?”

“…the fair?”

“No, you’re in the hospital, sweetheart. You were in an accident. A drunk driver hit you head on. You’ve been in a coma for days. We were worried we were going to lose you.”

I guess that’s why I couldn’t find my ticket to the fair. 

Advertisements

Mean Girls, Drag Queens, and a Sad Walk in the Rain

Hello!
A few weeks ago, an acquaintance invited me to her drag show for her birthday. She had invited me several times, but I often couldn’t go because of scheduling or just because I rather stay at home and watch Netflix. I’m a huge introvert and would prefer to hang out with a select group of people with some brews and a movie going on. Sometimes I go out with my sister to a small bar, but it’s mostly her friends that go. I don’t go to clubs and certainly not by myself.

tumblr_n8e687chmz1rrx588o1_500

She told me a few days before the event that some people have flaked out on her. I flashed back to my 23rd birthday… nobody showed up. After all, nobody likes you when you’re 23 but my feelings were really hurt. It was a time where I was really understanding that friends I had in high school were growing apart. I didn’t want her to feel that way, so I told her I’d go. I was trying to challenge myself to try new things and put myself out there. I didn’t want to be the lonesome girl again on a Friday night hanging out with cat (it’s sad but true – I’ll own it.)

1925771_o

The night of the event, the sky was rumbling with thunder and the clouds threatened a downpour any second. I was in bed, watching Star Wars, and in true form, contemplating if I truly wanted to go. Then I got a text from her reminding me of the event. So I went all out – I dug heels out of my closet and a dress I bought two years ago but never wore because, truth be told, I’m a jeans and tee kinda girl. But fuck it, right? I was going OUT that night and I was going to look good.

Y’all. I mastered the smokey eye, my eyeliner was evenly winged, and my brows were on fleek. This is a rare occurrence. It happens only once every 3 years and usually on a day I don’t see anybody. I felt confident. I felt like I could take over the world.

long-hair-dont-care-moment

I plug in the address and it’s downtown. On my way there, it starts pouring and in a panic, I question again turning back and going home. Heels were a bad choice. But, damn it, I was determined! I made it downtown and it stopped raining. Although it took me 30 minutes to find parking in an unsafe neighborhood behind the club, I made it.

I walk in and I realize that literally nobody is dressed up. Everyone is in jeans and regular shirt. I over dressed. By a lot. I wonder to the back area and find the woman of the night and see some other acquaintances. Before I could get over to them, a guy steps in my way and says in a drunken stupor, “Hellooooo, beautiful!” And then proceeds to put his face between my breasts and motorboats me.

giphy

I’m shook. I have no idea how to react. Is this normal in a gay club? If I react negatively, will I be a bitch? I’m humiliated by the attention it draws, but I realize this guy is trashed. I gently pushed him towards his friends and chuckle.

awkward-gif

I finally make it over the people I semi know and they were floored to see me there. I got a lot of surprised, “OMG YOU LOOK SO DIFFERENT” exclamations. Then, she walks in. By she, I mean awful she-devil that hates me for no apparent reason. We’ll call her Brittany. She doesn’t out right say anything rude directly to me, but she makes backhanded compliments and always tries to make feel less than my worth. My heart deflates.

testing-me

Everyone greets her and she looks at me up and down and smirks. I suddenly feel completely ridiculous. I feel like I’m right back in high school when Lauren Busybody decided she didn’t like my hair parted a certain way, so she tore down my homecoming locker decorations and kicked them as I tried to pick them up.

My temper flared. I’m an adult, damn it. I’m nearly 30, damn it. I wasn’t going to go down like that. I tried to interject myself into conversations and a few of the others were trying to include me, but she faced her back toward me and stepped in front of me anytime she could. I was losing confidence fast and try as I might, I wasn’t wanted there. I wanted to prove to myself that I wasn’t going to give up and I wasn’t going to let Brittany get the best of me.

gif-no-way_1

When it’s time for the show, we go inside and I’m trying really hard to fit in but feel silly as I’m in a short dress and heels. She steps in front of me one more time and I had it. I had to get away before I made things even that much more awkward and snapped. I asked if anybody needed anything from the bar. They shook their heads and I went to get another drink. At that point, I couldn’t muster up the strength to get back over there. I stayed by the bar and lasted only long enough to see the performance. It was GREAT! She did wonderful! All the queens were so nice too. Once that was over, I said my goodbyes and left.

I still had to walk like 2 blocks back to my car, so I started the slow trek over there. I had my keys between my fingers prepared for any possible attackers, but my mind was racing. What should I have done? Should I have spoken up and told her to quit her shit? No, I think, that would’ve just given her all the more satisfaction of knowing she got to me. I was half way to my car, when it starts pouring.

dr-who

Yep. This is appropriate. As I’m walking, a truck slowly passes me and the guy rolls down his window. He waves at me and I wave back all the while whispering to myself, “Please don’t think I’m a hooker… please don’t think I’m a hooker…”

nxcbxh8

As I cross the street to go down the last street to get to my car, he turns around and pulls up next to me. He asks me if I needed a ride. I shook my head vigorously and pointed to my car. I’ve seen this movie – spoiler: I die at the end. He stayed on the road and flipped on his brights, so I can cross the street (which is the most kindness anybody had shown me that night.)

I’ve seen this movie – spoiler: I die at the end.

It is then that I see there is about 8 inches of water over the street and I’d have to wade through it. In heels. I get across and into my car. I wait until the guy in the truck leaves (just in case he was a creeper) and I look at myself in the mirror. I’m drenched. My shoes are probably ruined. My make-up is running down my face. I just start bawling.

giphy1

When I compose myself, I start the drive home and mull over the night. It wasn’t exactly what I had in mind, but I put myself out there. I chatted with a friend of mine later on and they said sometimes we really have to look it from a biblical standpoint. If that’s the type of person she is and they’re the type of people to let her be that way, then I’m better off without them. I was there to show support for someone who wasn’t even there the entire time and I’m sure she would not have let that fly. Additionally, if being a mean girl to someone else is what makes Brittany feel better, then you really have to feel sorry for her.

4ba522f56395da6f1f5db25ab0ae7202

I won’t stop trying to put myself out there. I have lost touch with my social life and I really need to put myself out there. While the friendships I have are good and pure, I don’t really allow more opportunities for it and that’s to my own fault. How do you know if you don’t try? Root for me, y’all.

I’m still pissed about my shoes though.

-NTAJ

Dear Hater,

A while ago, I had a semi-successful blog that I posted in weekly about my life and dating and general “let’s figure this shit out” things. This was one of the few outlets I had and it was exhilarating to be able to express myself in a creative way and connect with so many different walks of life literally all over the world. 

After some issues at work (thanks to you) with my blog, I opted to take it down. After all, it was definitely encouraged as well as suggested that if I didn’t my career would not progress. What really gets me is that you went out of your way to be offended by it and take it to my superiors because… why? I have no idea. I didn’t talk about anything erotic and I for sure didn’t talk about my job. Hell, I never even mentioned it. Yet it still came around to be a roadblock in my career. Glad you got your dose of satisfaction. 

Well, this blog doesn’t have my name and I certainly won’t disclose my location. If you think this letter is about you, well, you know what they say about if the shoe fits…

Sincerely,

Jane

TMONJ: What I Learned Third-Wheeling My Own Date

I kept OkCupid around for awhile after I finished my blog research. Honestly, it was more to pass the time. After straight stomping on some fuckboys, I actually found a decent person to chat with. Funny, ambitious, and can carry a good conversation. If anything, I figured I would have a witty friend from it. Let’s call him Sure Thing Sal*.

We had plans to hang out last night, but it ended up pouring all day and I hate being out in it. I invited him over to my house for video games and he said he’ll bring over pizza (made it clear I didn’t have sucia tendencies). Just before he came over, my sister came home from work. She came in the house with her shoulders slumped, facial expression still tugging worries from the day. She had a rough day.

image

She had launched into full story mode when he finally arrived. They both work in the restaurant industry (both managers) and immediately were bonded over work grievances, lazy people, and restaurant quirks that you wouldn’t get unless you worked in that business (hint: I didn’t).

image

I sat there in between them quietly and listened to my sister and the guy I’m semi-interested in swap stories and tell tales of restaurant horror. They even knew the same people.

image

At first I felt very much like the kid sister and slightly pissed that my night of innocent flirtation and getting to know this guy more was out the window and then it dawned on me. My sister is one of the few people in my life that I love more than anything. Every guy I’ve ever brought around has always shyed away from her. You think I’m intimidating? Meet my sister. Her very presence commands respect because she’s a bad bitch with her head held high. Not only did he hold his own, he bonded with her. Earned her respect. That’s not something easily won over.

I may have been bored to tears about whatever the hell acronyms they were throwing out, but by the end of it, I had some sort of weird satisfaction that I’m learning how to pick em and what kind of standards I need in place for Mr. Right. I don’t know if Sure Thing Sal will be that person and it’s okay if he’s not, but at least I know that I am growing as a person and bringing around people to my family worthy of their time.

image

forever awkward,
nj

TMONJ: OkCupid? More Like No Way, Stupid

Forgive me for that cheesy ass title, but I couldn’t help it.

It’s good to be back. I kind of lost some inspiration and a lot of things have been going on. I also had to put in some research for this post today and future posts.

We’ve all pretty much experienced with internet dating at some point, either if it was a personal thing or a friend ventured into it. The big apps out there for our generation are OkCupid, Plenty of Fish, and Tinder. If you’re mega serious about finding someone to marry (yikes), you splurge for fancy sites like eHarmony or Match.com, but c’mon… There’s something a twinge bit more desperate about paying for your membership. Sure, they have better “matching” criteria and algorithms, but is our generation that serious at this point in our lives to pay $19.99 a month to find love? Nope. We pay $11.99 for commercial-free Hulu and call that bae.

I started this research with the intent of learning more about what kind of people are drawn to these sites. I opened accounts with all three sites mentioned above and set some ground rules:

1) I must not tell lies.
I must be completely honest with every person who messages me as well as convey on my blog posts my true feelings. If I do feel like I could potentially be serious about someone, I must tell them about my blog.

2) I must respond to every* message.
Except super creepy dudes (you’ll see).

3) I will not sleep with anybody and if enjoying a few beers, I could only have 3 max.

This post will be about my experience on OkCupid. Here is what my online account looks like:

image

Pretty standard profile so far. OkCupid also makes you fill out other areas that I was 99.99% sure nobody was going to read.

image

This things are all true. Redbox…. Ugh.

image

To be fair, those were things I was thinking about in that moment of time.

image

image

So there you have it. My personality captured in a few characters broken down by some different categories. Would you send me a message?

I have tried OkCupid before with no luck. I was skeptical about this experience, but I told myself to look at it with a new perspective. #fortheblog

Here is to the first round cuts 🍻:

Some really tried to earn that beer and we bonded over dirty jokes:

image

Some opted for a line as old as time:

image

A few were a bit aggressive:

image

Some came out of left field with something disgusting:

image

What a gem:

image

A couple asked me a random and never responded back:

image

Am I not on a dating website? I broke a rule and didn’t respond because… C’mon!

image

There were a few that advanced to the next level simply by being able to carry a decent conversation.

One in particular is Mr. Dramatic. You’ll find out why I call him that later. At first, I thought he was really awesome. The first time we talked on the phone, I talked to him for 5 hours. FIVE HOURS. Who has that much to talk about? It was a good conversation though. We met shortly after that and hung out once. The second and last time we hung out (after two weeks of knowing each other), we sat on his brother’s porch and drank a few beers while the rain poured down. I was sweaty as fuck. It was humid as hell and dumbass me wore a Merino sweater thinking we wouldn’t be kicking it outside. I thought, well maybe I look like Beyonce… Sultry and misty. Um. No. This is what I looked like:

image

We got along pretty well though and I thought to myself that we could be really good friends. I felt compelled to tell him about the real reason I was on OkCupid and he was surprisingly cool with it. I am huge on honesty and I let him know that I try to be as honest as I can be and I hoped he can do the same with me, but after asking him some questions about his living situation and car, I began to get this suspicious feeling he wasn’t being completely honest. Throughout the night, he kept making references to us having a long future. It was funny at first, but then it was a little too much.  At the end of the night, he looked at me deep in my eyes and said the words that completely ruined everything for me, “I want you to be my girlfriend.”

At that moment, I had a fight or flight situation at hand. I’ve seen this guy twice and something seemed off. I told him that freaked me out and needed to think about it. The next day, I talked about it with my sister and best friend. They both felt like it was a little weird that he went there that quick, but hey, maybe it’s been a while for him too. Maybe he didn’t remember what it was like to date and begin something like that. I barely do. Then I didn’t hear from him for two weeks. Turns out he was lying about the things I suspected (wasn’t where he said he was in life which wouldn’t have been an issue, but red flags to lie about). When confronted, he told me that he’s a weak person and he understands if I don’t want to talk to him anymore. I just said, “Okay, bye.” I’ve known this guy for a month and he was dramatic. #GirlBye

In the end, I rate OkCupid a place for maybe one conversation with a person and a place you could possibly meet a friend – 4/10 stars on the romantic journey. Join me next week for my adventure with Tinder!

forever awkward,
nj

The Misadventures of Norma-Jeane: Five Realizations I Had In The Hospital

IMG_20150901_022431

Recently I was hospitalized for three days and two nights. It was scary. I had been feeling sick for over a week and my symptoms were looking like appendicitis. My best friend would not drop it and drove me to the hospital. She waited with me for SEVEN hours before I was admitted and taken to my room.

I learned a few things hanging out on my bed. When I wasn’t watching Bill Murray movies on AMC, I was watching people or reflecting on my life as I waited to hear what was actually wrong with me. I know that’s dramatic as hell, but it’s scary when your symptoms aren’t easily identified and you are getting prepped for “maybe surgery”.

Obviously I survived and here is what I learned from this whole ordeal:

1.) Doctors are pretentious d-bags and nurses are the fucking unsung heroes of that place.

I saw my doctor a total of FIVE minutes the whole three days I was trapped in the hospital. He couldn’t be reached or bothered 95% of the time. The nurses, on the other hand, were the kindest, most gentlest people I’ve come across. They run that shit. My team of nurses had to tell my doctor twice that I couldn’t digest solid foods and to quit putting it on my meal plan.

2.) I HATE being alone, especially during something scary like that.

My best friend was AWESOME throughout the whole experience. She came to see me every day and brought me books and a 3DS to keep me entertained. My mom was also totally badass and did the thing only moms can do to make you feel better when you’re feeling totally shitty (holla new PJs). However, when they left, the hallways grew silent and nothing else was on TV besides infomercials, I was left with myself and thoughts bouncing around in my head. What if there is something super wrong with me? Ohmygod, I need to take care of myself better. What am I gonna do if it is serious?

Turned out not to be anything too serious thankfully, but I do want to take care of myself so something like that never happens again. Guess being able to see the silver lining is a big thing.

There was one part that was really hard for me. I’m not ready to talk about it, but it really made me realize that I need to face that part of me.

3.) A bit of humor can get you far (and an extra jello cup ayeeeee).

They had me on an awful liquid diet once they ruled out surgery. I mean… It was definitely needed because I couldn’t keep anything down, but it was still disgusting. So, when this guy knocked on my door and said, “Aye lil mama, I need to take your order for breakfast,” I was ELATED. Oh my god, REAL FOOD. They’re letting me have real food!

Uh. No.

“It says here you’re on a liquid diet. So…. Beef or chicken broth. What do ya want?”

“You can get the doctor to write me a prescription for a cheeseburger before I die of starvation… That’ll be a great start.”

Dude nearly dropped his iPad he was laughing so hard. When he dropped off my plate later on, not only did I have in extra jello cup, but I also had a Popsicle. He winked and said, “Couldn’t get a cheeseburger because you literally cannot handle it, but I did put an extra something something on there for you.”

#thelittlethings

4.) Patience is indeed a virtue.

I waited and waited for days for test results. While wrestling with your internal conflicts, you tend to find your core. It was a good time to reflect.

5.) How much you are cared about and loved.

Once people found out I was in the hospital, my phone was blowing up with well wishes. I was really touched. Thank you to everyone who reached out to me. It was very kind.

Being in the hospital sucked, but I’m happy to know besides a huge medical bill, I also learned some things about myself. I go back to work tomorrow and I can’t wait to be back in the midst of everything. Time to restart my life, but this time with a few health changes.

forever awkward,
nj

The Misadventures of Norma-Jeane: Let’s Talk About Mean Girls

Sorry I suck and haven’t posted anything in two weeks. I moved and work has been kinda crazy…

As much as I L-O-V-E the movie Mean Girls, I can’t stand mean girls in real life. In really dissecting it, I think I like the movie so much because A) it’s hilarious and I’ll probably quote it for the rest of my life and B) it pokes fun at the mean girls who use to bully me in school shoving their vapid behinds into the light.

The thing about mean girls is that they just don’t disappear once you graduate high school. They’re everywhere. At work, at your favorite bar, social gatherings, etc… Then, all of a sudden, you’re back in 7th grade gym and you find your clothes wet in the shower while Penelope Hamilton* snickers with her friends.

Kids were mean and as adult, people suck – no doubt. Of course, you rise above it because you’re a grown up. But sometimes… Sometimes you just gotta stick up for yourself!

I ruthlessly defend and protect those I love. Bitches be warned, fuck with my family or friends, I will tear you apart. I can go toe-to-toe with a mean girl when it’s concerning those around me and I like to think of myself as a no-bullshit kinda person and to, an extent, I am. But sometimes I need a lesson in standing up with myself and I think we all get there every once in a while where we just don’t know what to do. Whether we’re trying to maintain our professionalism, respect others we care about, or are just trying to be the bigger person in not provoking a fight.

Here is why this is bullshit:

YOU ARE NOT A DOORMAT. Yes, there are battles you pick to fight and those you choose to leave alone. However, you shouldn’t have to defend yourself against someone you work with. They’re jealous of you and hating? Fuck them. There is a reason why they are and it almost always has nothing to do with you, sweetheart. Call them out on their bullshit… in a diplomatic and tactful way. It all has to do with the delivery.

Someone in your social circle causes issues? Drop them. Sorry – nothing in life dictates you have to interact with someone that isn’t where you work or in your immediate family. That’s where you drop the #byefelicia and peace out.

I know sometimes it’s a bit more complicated than that because what if that person has ties to another person you care about? Just because they are tied to them makes them tied to you. You don’t have to “fit in” with them because they already discount your opinion. If you tried it once and it actually worked out – awesome. More often than not, it doesn’t. Don’t kill yourself trying to be liked by mean girls or just shitty people in general. Be cordial for those you care about it, but make it clear you don’t tolerate simple bitches.

The point is that you don’t have to endure it and we should focus on things that help us grow as people. Negativity in your life is like an anchor tethering you down in the same spot no matter how much the current tries to sway you forward.

I know it can be tiring to defend yourself constantly, but the point is, standing up for yourself isn’t defending an action or choice. It’s defending your character and worth. It’s powerful to stand with your feet planted and know what and who you are.

Most people don’t.

forever awkward,
nj