Everything I Did This Morning Before Starting To Do Research I'm Supposed To Do All Day
1. Remained in my bed for half an hour after my alarm went off, trying to read various things around my room without my glasses (Number of book titles/pictures/movie titles I could see/read: zero.) and examining my retainers, which surely must be grosser than the retainers of every other retainer-wearer in the entire world.
2. Lied down in front of my parents’ fridge for a few minutes, trying to decide where that noise is coming from. Decided I should back up in case the noise turns out to be a giant rat (or rat king) who then runs at my face.
4. Returned to lie down in front of fridge with a butcher knife. Oh weird, the noise stopped pretty much. I think it was ice cubes actually. Coast is clear - for now.
5. Played the “game” where I sit at the top of the basement stairs, which my family’s little puppy is afraid of, and try to make her come over to me. She wouldn’t, she just runs in circles at the other end of the room, all “seriously I don’t know what to do about this.” She’s sick of this game but I am not because it is hilarious. (Is that mean?)
6. Read a couple of blog posts on a website I hate, just to remember that I hate it.
7. Googled “what do forklifts do really.” Just wondering.
8. Googled “why isn’t CSI on Instant Netflix and what can I do about this.”
I finished The Marriage Plot yesterday, after a whirlwind of reading over Christmas Eve and Christmas Day in which I realized it’s been about a billion years since I’ve read any fiction that wasn’t sci-fi (I got on an Isaac Asimov kick for a while there). I’m in grad school, I only have time for non-fiction. Or Netflix, really. I also remembered how hard it is for me to read for more than an hour at a time without a constant stream of coffee, no matter how engaging I find the book. I. Am. Old.
And I did find The Marriage Plot engaging, though I wasn’t sure if I was supposed to. It’s weird to read a book that you’re prepared to potentially hate, based on criticisms from sources you trust. Particularly, for me, when these criticisms are feminist ones. And these are valid. Madeleine lacked dimension, and her young life revolved too much around boys at times. Still, I found her storyline believable and understandable. I’ve known and loved people like her. I gave myself perhaps too much room to empathize with her and give her motivations that weren’t expressly written.
I liked the book anyway. I liked the way it made me change who I was “rooting for,” romantic interest-wise, halfway through the book. I liked the way Eugenides described Leonard’s manic depression. I liked the way it made me feel about being young and wrong. I liked the letters - the one from Mitchell’s mom to her son, and especially the sweet and funny one from Mitchell to Madeleine. That one made me squeal, accidentally. I am probably just a sucker.
ANYWAY what did you think? (I am always trying to start “book clubs” between me and one friend at a time, and they pretty much never work, except for the one time Emily and I both read YA classic Alphas and got coffee and read our favorite horrible puns to each other out loud. So, internet, be my book club.)
K:This might be inappropriate but did you guys have, when you were in middle school, that story that went around about the guy who put his ear up to a hole in the bathroom stall because he hears a noise and then, like, got his ear poked by a penis? Like it was a "glory hole" basically, only we didn't know what that was back then?
J:Yeah I think we had that too. I sort of remember that.
K:So it's just an urban legend probably. I feel like one version of the story was that the guy died somehow? Like ear...impaling?
J:I don't know why he'd just stay there though. Just letting it...poke him. Like, "No, I'm sticking with this. I definitely hear something."
Today is my first day at my parents’ for holiday break and so far I have:
1. Gotten lunch with my mom, and saw a kid from my high school at the restaurant, and thought maybe he’s gotten kind of hot, but that could’ve just been because he was handing me a sandwich.
2. Went nail polish shopping with my mom, because when her and I are together we always have to go to Ulta and buy pretty things. We had 20% off coupons - hers worked on the whole purchase and mine didn’t. I realized in the car. “Just go back in,” she said. “I will wait here, you need to get that 20% off. GO BACK IN, I’m serious.”
3. Listened to my mother’s feelings on Selena Gomez. (“I like her voice, if not always her actual taste in music.”)
4. Felt guilty about underage drinking. (Mom: “You kids can have Bailey’s on Christmas morning if you want.” Me: “Dan is underage.” Mom: “Oh please, you were drinking then too. You just lied about it.”)
5. Decorated Christmas cookies with my mom and brothers.
Youngest brother: “I’m going to marry Sarah, probably.” (That’s my mom’s bff’s daughter, who he’s never met.)
Me: “You should, she’s pretty.”
Brother: “Then you can marry Dad’s friend’s son, it’ll be perfect.”
Me: “Isn’t he, like, ten? He’s ten.”
Mom: “Noooo, he’s in college. He’s a freshman.”
Brother: “As long as it’s legal.”
Mom: “No, Katie will marry somebody ten years older than her.”
Me: “ARE YOU SAYING THAT BECAUSE I’M GETTING OLD?!?!?!”
6. Eaten dinner with my whole family for the first time in months (young brother goes to school in Montana, of all places.) Mom asks us, please, to say “please pass the ______” when we want things from other parts of the table. Me: “But we can reach everything we want.” Bigger younger brother: “We are an elite tall family, that is what you do.”
7. Went to buy the Christmas tree that my dad caved on, because me and my brothers turned on the charm/begging. There were only eight trees left at the place we go. Guess what, though? Ours is perfect.
So can I always get to go hang out in bars with my friends, hiding a little notebook in my lap and jotting down notes? (Actually the truth is that when the very drunk boys discussed in this article were talking to us, I was openly writing down what they were saying and THEY DID NOT NOTICE EVEN A LITTLE BIT.)
Last night I went downstairs to my friends’ apartment only to find my friend Silvana reading facts about marsupial reproduction aloud.
"How did you get to this point?" I asked her.
"Me and Marie were talking about babies, and if it would be grosser to have them in different ways than the human way, and we got to talking about kangaroos," she said.
"Like, do you think it would be grosser to throw up your baby than to have it come out your vagina?" yelled (yelled) Marie from the other room.
"THAT IS OBVIOUSLY A MILLION TIMES GROSSER," I said.
But anyway what it comes down to is that Marie said she thought it might be better to have your baby hang out in a pouch, like kangaroo babies do. That is (sort of) how we felt until we read about the actual process of marsupial reproduction, which is as follows:
Marsupials give birth at a very early stage of development (about 4–5 weeks); after birth, newborn marsupials crawl up the bodies of their mothers and attach themselves to a nipple, which is located on the underside of the mother either inside a pouch called the marsupium or open to the environment.
(Emphasis mine because WHAT THE FUCK OH MY GOD.)
This little revelation has now taken the place of my former most-scariest baby-related fear, which I made up in my own head when I was 17. I went with my high school best friend to her cabin, just the two of us, and we slept out in the screened porch. The cabin was in the woods so there were lots of nature sounds, which I guess is normal but also the worst thing ever when you are a fairly pathetic teenager who is scared of everything. Then there was this distinct rustling, and I remember thinking that it sounded like something crawling, and my friend and I laughed nervously.
"What is the scariest thing you can think of that that noise could be?" she asked me.
"…A baby," I said. "Like a savage, lost, terrifying baby. Crawling around in the dark."
"With hollowed eyes!!!!" she said.
"And it can, like, crawl faster than a normal baby. And its eyes glow!!!!!" I whispered.
And then we screamed just a small amount, and then we went to sleep.
Isn’t that the worst? It is absolutely the worst, and the scariest. Tiny small evil things crawling around by my feet are one of my top five fears, edged out just barely now by the fear that I will give birth to something and it will immediately crawl up my body and attach itself to my nipple.
Also of interest, regarding kangaroo sex, is the fact that female marsupials have three vaginas - two lateral vaginas, plus a third “median vagina” used specially for birth. Male marsupials? TWO-PRONGED PENISES. (By the way, you can try Google Image searching that, but you will be sorely disappointed by what you find.)
So my roommate and I have been watching a LOT of "Greek"
Like, four seasons in about…a week and a half? It’s finals breakdown, or that thing where you should be concentrating the most effort on your work at the end of the semester but actually all you do is order Chinese food and watch TV and go to the Mall of America on a Wednesday to get Christmas presents for everyone you know, and try on lots of particularly glittery makeup at Sephora.
Anyway on Greek there’s this biatch named Frannie who USED to be ZBZ president and then there’s also my homegirl ZBZ Casey Cartwright who is awesome and pretty and those two ladies are enemies. And I get weirdly invested in their dramas, and I feel a personal sense of victory when Casey tells Frannie to watch her back or whatever, or that one time when Casey threw a drink in Frannie’s face. So last night, when I had a dream that my town suffered a spontaneous flood and I hid from it under a pine tree (?), and then I decided to run for City Council because I thought, hey, we need to DO something about this flooding issue (I mean, it seeped into my dream bedroom and broke my dream TV, after all), I ran against this biatch named Aymie and I told her that she was going down, and SHE said she’d see to it that the flood stayed around for as long as she did (EVIL), and then I slapped her in the face…I sort of knew where it was coming from.
Did you ever wonder what lives in my purse, like some kind of creep, or a curious normal person? Today on The Hairpin, you can find out.
Or you could climb into my bedroom window right now. I’m on the second floor so it might be kind of difficult, but if you are careful with the blinds, I probably won’t even hear you come in. My purse is on the floor. Please don’t take anything, just sift through it quietly and then leave. Do not, under any circumstances, take any candy from in my room. I will notice. I can promise you that.
“Let me tell you something. Life is there for the taking. So I’m gonna grab it by the throat, and pummel it, and throttle it, and stick it in the boot of my car and stab it repeatedly over and over again until it says sorry.”—Donna, Pulling