get up in the morning, give it your all

Basically, in 2009 and 2010 I was the worst friend ever. No, really, I was. But you know that. You were probably ditched or bailed on by me on various occasions, and to be honest, I didn't have a good excuse or reason. I was just being shitty.

This year, though, I've really been trying to get over myself finally. I kind of thought I had gotten over myself a couple years ago... but that was sort of bullshit. It's tough, for sure. Still, I'm getting a little better about not bailing on people. I have a hard time making and sticking to plans because I've never not been spontaneous... but I'm definitely getting better at it.

I spent the bulk of 2009-2010 hating being in this city. At that point, I really wanted out. For like the 254796th time. What I came to realize at the start of this year is that it wasn't the city I hated- it was the direction my life had taken. You know that saying 'Not all who wander are lost'? It's true sometimes, but not for me. I was lost. Somewhere along the way, I turned into someone unfamiliar. My family, of course, was ecstatic because they don't understand who I am... they just figured I was becoming responsible, and getting my shit together. But I looked at myself in the mirror on the daily and was like, 'How the fuck did I even get here?'. And suddenly, I realized that I couldn't do it anymore. I can't do it anymore. I've dedicated a large chunk of my life to trying to keep everyone around me happy. I can't escape that; it's in my framework, much the way other things like loving difficult people, and having commitment issues are. But now, more than ever, I realize that you can't please everyone all the time. It just isn't possible. And when you focus too much on that, you lose the real focus which is yourself. I mean, do I love my family? Hells yeah. But I'm so done with trying to be the kind of person that they want me to be. As much as I want to be sorry about how much of a disappointment it must be to them, I'm not. Do I regret pretending for so long? Yeah, for sure. But even though there's now a lot of uncertainty about the direction my life will take in the next couple of years, I'm starting to feel like myself again for the first time in a long time. I can totally look in the mirror now and not see a complete stranger staring back.

The most obvious sign of it is that recently I've been a hell of a lot more appreciative of my friends. Spending time with them instead of pretending I have something better to do with my time, but in reality just sitting alone in my apartment watching shit TV, and feeling sorry for myself. In particular, the friends who have seen me through the last half decade... because it's been a motherfucking journey and a half. You guys have always been the least judgemental of me, and I have been pretty terrible to you at times. But you've always known that I'm better than that, and I guess what I'm saying is that your belief in me has really helped me to transcend all of the bullshit and actually believe in myself again.

So yeah... 2011 has proven to be a rough year on many counts, and if I'm being honest, because of it a lot of shit is sort of hanging in the balance. But that's actually more of a blessing than a curse. It's up to me to take it to the next level, deal with my shit, and just be me from here on out. A better me. The best me, even. Thanks for hanging in there with me, guys. I'm more fucking grateful for that than you'll ever know.



black sheep

No big secret, I've always been the black sheep of the family. I grew up in this bizarre, upper middle class, well-rounded sort of way that always fit me awkwardly. I've generally gone through life trying to make everybody around me happy, trying to somehow make my family proud of me. But they've never been proud of me, as I usually fuck up everything I do. Even now that I have a well-paying 'career' (albeit, one that I've grown to dislike), they STILL aren't proud of me. They never asked me anything about my job back in the years when I actually enjoyed doing it, and now that I'm actively looking for something else, they tell me that I'm not seeing the big picture, and that I shouldn't be so ungrateful because not everybody gets 'handed' a career.

Sigh... okay, so here's the big thing I've been sitting on for years, and pretty much the only thing I have lied about to all of you... I didn't really fucking finish university.


Um... yeah. I've been fucking lying about it this whole time, and I feel like such a goddamned fraud.

Got a lot of the way through... but ended up dropping out because I was a really screwed up person at the time, and also a raging alcoholic. I really apologize that you guys need to read about this on the internet, because I should have just levelled with you to begin with. If I lose your respect and friendship, I deserve and accept it. I won't ask for your forgiveness... I'll just move on with the life I may have now just destroyed via my stupid blog.

I did finish a broadcasting diploma, but I let too much time slide between the point I graduated to the point where I should have been trying to look for work... and now, 10 years later, I am no longer employable in the industry.

I'm just one of those people for whom the world is a really big place, and the thought of getting tied down to any one thing for the rest of my life scares the hell out of me. For all I've tried to meet the expectations that everyone has of me, I can't. I know I'm supposed to want the sort of life where I live in this big house, and marry an engineer (or something equally as mundane), and have kids, and I don't have to worry about how the bills are going to get paid, and everything is awesome... but I don't want that. The closer it's seemed to get, the more I want absolutely nothing to do with it. And I mean no disrespect to those of you I know who do want that; I think it's a good way of life... for someone else.

I'm not happy unless I can do as I please. I'd like to start drawing again. Play more music. Listen to more music. Start my own shitty business. Drink with my friends (the ones I have left after this fucking rant). Dress up only when I feel like it. Get all those tattoos that I've been saving up for. Go back to Hawaii. Go to other places I haven't been yet. Go to those places with someone who hasn't been to them either. Go back to school. Learn how to do more things. Keep learning how to do things. Just keep being me. The real me.

One of the most fantastic people I have ever known- fantastic for the reason of having stuck it out as my friend for the past 5 years, and never having judged me even through the times when I was a horrible person to him- recently said something to me that I've really taken to heart:

"People say to never regret anything, but I say to use regrets as a focus to change the things you want to change... if you do that, it can spur you to do things you never would have done instead of always beating yourself up about the stuff you never did."

Best advice ever. From one black sheep to another. I could waste the rest of my life worrying about what you all think about me now... but I'm not going to. I have a lot of shit to figure out, a lot of my life left to live.

I'll see you out there... because there's no way in hell I'm staying in here forever.



the best things are like the best things ever

What up, blog readers (so, all five of you)? So, basically, I kinda hate using the word 'epic' (and even so, I find I use it way too much for stuff that actually is not), but today is the Monday after what I'd call an 'epic' weekend. In the past decade or so, I've struggled a lot with trying to be what I consider an 'adult-type person', but also with not losing my true self in the process. Every year, I make this huge declaration about wanting to move somewhere else (and a couple of times I actually have left), because 'Calgary sucks', and I 'just can't make this place my home, no matter how hard I try'.

Well, Calgary FINALLY fucking showed my ass what's what.

Friday, I had one of the best nights out in recent history. Drunken good times at the Ship with good pals, random pizza, lots of gin and tonics, shooters, a punk rock show, late night eats at the crack Sev, crashing on a friend's couch, and then a delicious almond croissant on the walk to my car. Whoa. Can't believe this 34-year-old body held on until 2:30 in the AM.

Saturday was a day of good eats and amazing surprises. Lunch with some old friends. Then dinner, which turned out to be WEDDING BOMB! That's right, dinner was in fact the surprise wedding of my good friends. And I second-guessed myself, so instead of dressing to the nines, I looked like I was going to a metal show (whoops). I introduced those kids a few years ago, and I am so stoked that they are now fucking married. You see, I really AM here to help. I love you guys- so glad I was there... even though I looked like a total banger. Two out of three, though, right? ;) I wish you guys nothing but the best; you deserve no less than that.

Early Sunday morning phone call from The Dirtbag. That kid NEVER phones me... turns out he and my bff had a drunken heart to heart (cool, by the way... I love my friends so much), and I think he's starting to realize the error of his ways. Normally, I'd be super pissed about a 1:30 in the morning phone call... particularly if I'm not still out and about. But then he gave this awkward little drunken speech, "Was talking to your friend about you... so I was thinking about you... and so I thought I would call you and tell you that...", and if that didn't sort of melt my goddamned heart. Ha. I guess there's just something about getting validation, no matter how it comes about. Oh man, life...

Sometimes the best things are right in front of you, and have been there all along. YYC, sorry it took me so long to see it. I think I kind of love it here after all, and I'm not ready to call it quits on you just yet.



bros before hos

First order of bidniz... yeah, I am getting rid of the *infamous* bro tat. For realsies. I'm waiting a couple paycheques, a car tuneup, and one mortgage payment more, then going in for a consult at Deadly Tattoos to figure out what's gonna cover that bitch up. For those who don't know, that stupid little Chinese character on my ankle (it means either 'ginger beef' or 'fuck you in Chinese' depending on the day or what mood I'm in) was acquired when I was eighteen with my BFF at the time (named Cam). I think we just did it because we were bored, but it seemed 'symbolic' or whatever. We did stay friends for a long time, but in more recent years he just kind of disappeared from my life. Sometimes I see him around still, but we really aren't friends anymore, and haven't been for some amount of time. I think I hung on to the tat not because of the whole 'bro' thing, but because what it actually is supposed to mean (and probably doesn't actually, but when you're eighteen, who's keeping track?) is 'strength'. Anybody who knows anything KNOWS I went through some major shit in my twenties. I had a lot of stuff happen, and I guess that any time something started to get really fucked up, I would look at my ankle and think, 'Oh yeah. Strength. Right.', and slowly things would start to sort themselves out.

But I'm ready to get rid of it because now it's just some old faded symbol of things I can't change. So it's time to focus on the things I still have left to do. Yeah... so bye bye, bro tat. It's been... well, it's been.


Secondly? Let's talk jobs. I used to like my job. You know, when it was fresh and new, and I still had a lot to learn, and they were more than willing to pay for work training and so on, so forth. But now, I've been here probably half a decade too long, and other than that I am currently completely reliant on the paycheque it provides, it is no longer a place I wish to be every morning of my godforsaken life.

Maybe the most fucked thing is that whenever I ask anybody for job leads, they always go back to the same old same old. Some shitty desk job where I'd be doing the exact same thing as I'm doing now. And honestly? I need a break from this. I was talking to some people the other day about the fact that I come from a family where they kind of expect me to have some respectable white collar job... but you know what the most rewarding work I ever did was? Manual labor. Not a word of a lie. I used to install lawns (and golf greens, etc.) for a living. I'd get up at the ass crack of dawn, drive my crappy old Chevy boat down to the yard, then jump into crew cab to drive off to the job site of the day. And I'd usually pull 12 hour days, at least. Dirty work, too, not the type of job you'd necessarily want to do if you can't stand being hands and knees down in the mud all day, every day. At the basis of all of this, I guess I'm just a lot more blue collar than I've been led to believe that I supposed to be. The point is, I actually sort of liked that job because at least by the time I got home, showered up, and cracked that first beer, I felt I'd earned it.

Right now? Fuck... I'm writing a blog post. I've earned nothing. I don't even deserve that shitty can of Black Label that's in the very back of the fridge. I sit in my corner office, and I'm lucky if half the time anybody even remembers I'm here. What I always get from people is the same garbage, "Isn't it awesome to get paid to do nothing?". Mmmkay... no. No it isn't. It sucks because I feel like such a fraud. I don't feel like I'm headed anywhere in particular, and because of that I hate getting up in the morning (okay, so I always hate that... not a morning person).

Do I necessarily know what I want to do? No... but I'm pretty damned intuitive, and when the right opportunity rears its head, I will know.


life is war, but we're gonna make it

What else... a list.

1) While I used to be pretty envious of people with an obvious destination in life, I've just come to accept that I don't really have one. I don't have a two year plan. Or a five year plan. Or any plan (well, except for stuff I've already paid for which technically is planning... but I'll let that slide) for that matter. It's like everytime I try to make actual plans, I'm the one who ends up bailing. Commitment issues. Or maybe I just like to see where the night, or moment, or life takes me.

2) Haha... has anyone else noticed that I'm really not in that great shape anymore? I don't know what happened, exactly. Well, no, not true. After the last time I ran, my knee felt weird... and now if I go for long runs it hurts and I have to stop. So, no half marathons in my future for now. Instead, I've taken up playing soccer for the winter. Indoors.

3) So, I had this conversation with someone recently (was it you? I don't remember who with... too much beer) about whether or not I believe in god. The way I see it... I don't really know. If there is a god (yeah, no capitals here, people... that's just fucking asking for it), then he/she/it/whatever doesn't really do anything.I think there was a god in the beginning, but now it's just us, here to fend for ourselves and make the choices that we're gonna make. We're on our own, really. It's up to us if we're going to make it or not.

4) I sold out and got an iPhone. Don't fucking judge me... I'll high five you in the face with a shovel.

5) WTF... I have Warrant on my iPod? I'm like the biggest skid I know. I don't know what's worse, though, that or the fact that there's Justin Fucking Timberlake in there too.

6) Funny part of my weekend: getting random hangout texts from my friend, then he totally passes out on his phone. Out and out, I know the best people in life. In. Life.

7) It's almost sock weather. Nooooooo.


the world has turned and left me here

Sometimes you just run out of everything.

Sleep. Food. Clean clothes. Steam. Patience. Time.

Life's a little hectic right now. A lot of stuff has happened in the last few months, and I'm kind of just waiting for it to slow down. Or stop. Or something.
I feel like I'm in my head about a lot of things, but also sort of all over the place. I'm trying to keep everybody in my life as happy as I possibly can, but I'm spreading myself pretty thin doing it. I sleep too much. I sleep too little. I drink too much coffee. I drink too much alcohol. I wake up late. I wake up in the middle of the night. I make commitments I don't know how to keep. I make choices that complicate things. I over-analyze everything. I don't analyze things enough. I'm too good of a friend. I'm a terrible friend. I'm too intense. I'm too distant. I say all the wrong things. I come on too strong. I'm not decisive enough.

And I'm starting to run on fumes. I'm tired of trying to be everything to everyone and failing. I can only be who I am, whether or not every single person in my life is happy with who that is. I've spent the last ten fucking years of my life doing all that I can to try and become what I thought I wanted to become, only to realize this year that I've been very, very wrong about it. I don't want to sit around at a job that doesn't satisfy me just for a paycheque that doesn't even make me that happy anymore. I just want to get out there and have a fantastic life. I know. That's it. Underwhelming, considering that a full decade has gone by. And I realize that the revelation is probably a huge letdown to a lot of people. What can I say? I want to say I'm sorry that I couldn't live up to what all you guys wanted for me... but the thing is that I'm not really sorry at all. Not about not wanting this so-called life I've created for myself. I am, however, sorry about a myriad of other things.

I'm sorry I haven't been a better friend to those who have stuck by me over the years.

I'm sorry for making knee-jerk decisions that have hurt people that I love.

I'm sorry for acting like I've had better things to do with my time when I really haven't.

I'm sorry for leading you astray.

I'm sorry for leading you on.

I'm sorry for not loving you enough.

I'm sorry for loving you too much.

Basically, what you are looking at now is the bare bones of what I am and what I'm going to become. All that's left. But what's left is what's still good about me. I didn't like the kind of person I was becoming, but now I don't have to become that person anymore. I haven't felt this free in a long time.


true story

I chose you because I want to keep feeling fucked up, and crazy, and out of control, and completely overwhelmed about you for as long as I possibly can.


dirtbag life

Ah, blog. How I've missed you. I know I don't update this thing much, but every once in awhile I have something to say that no one gives a shit about, so it's always good to have.

Lately, I'm kind of a train wreck. I'm saying this in comparison to last year, when I was at my best. This year started off okay, but it's been a shaky one for sure. Particularly throughout the summer. I've been trying to stay in shape, but recently I think my weight loss may have more to do with not eating properly and binge alcoholism than actually training for anything. I still run, but not seriously. In fact, I'm in my own head about a ton of things these days, and it comes across as that I'm a little all over the place right now; erratic and non-committal.

One good thing is that I'm definitely forging stronger relationships with certain people- being a little better at not falling off the face of the Earth for long periods of time and not telling anyone where I've gone. I'm also taking the time to evaluate the role of certain others in my life- people who I might be ready to move on from. But I think the major shift in me of late has more to do with the realization that I may be getting too comfortable, too settled into a routine. And even though it may seem to everyone like that's a good thing... I see it more as that I'm starting to lose who I am. And I'm aware that that's what is truly at the heart of all of this 'running rad in the streets' business that has been going on with me over the past little while. You'd assume that with everybody settling down around me it would seem logical for me to do the same... and hell yeah, it might be nice to settle down someday, but I've given it a lot of serious thought over the past week or so, and there's just something deep down that tells me it is not the time... so it seems that I've got some hard choices to make. This all sounds so melodramatic, but I've got to make sure that I don't let the person I truly am slip away in the interest of making everybody else around me happy. Because that would be easy, but you can't please everyone all the time.

It's weird how one conversation can change everything so drastically. A couple of months ago I sort of thought I knew what I wanted... and then just a little over a week ago, it all came unravelled in one night. Sometimes you make the strongest connections with the most unexpected people. People who make you take a better look around. And I guess that I'm just not ready to give up my dirtbag ways. I'll never be ready to conform to the masses. I'm the kind of girl who just wants what she wants, when she wants it. I can't be bought, told, coaxed, or convinced. I won't always make the best choices. In fact, I know I still have a lot of fucking up to do... but it's not a bad thing. It's what keeps my heart beating.