Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Summertime Musings and Changes to Charlotte Ate Pie

Since I haven't blogged in such a long time, I just thought I'd share some thoughts on the events of the past few weeks.

1. The End of Senior Year. So much happened during the first two weeks of June. Prom was so amazing: I had a rockin' dress, a super-cute date, and amazing friends to party with. Quite an incredible night. Somehow I managed to pass my last quarter with flying colors and got an award for being a good person from the first paraplegic to graduate from Radnor. I had the good fortune of meeting her and she was such a sweet, courageous woman. I'm so proud to be compared to her and I hope I can do her proud in college and beyond. Graduation was totally bizarre. I was used to the atmosphere after playing in the band for the last two ceremonies, but it was weird to be the one being honored. I didn't cry or anything, but I did get pretty misty. I'm an alumnus. How'd that happen?

2. My Highly Productive Summer. So far this summer, I've done a zillion errands; visited the majority of my family; been to three dance recitals; gotten certified in lifeguarding, CPR, AED, first aid, and oxygen administration; gone to an audition workshop with the 11th Hour Theatre Company; and become gainfully employed by HomeGoods. Currently I'm taking a class in ear-training and sight singing with my voice teacher. I'm also trying to finish a bunch of books by the end of the summer, watch a few seasons of some TV shows my friends have lent me (specifically Queer as Folk and How I Met Your Mother...I feel the need to watch TV shows from the beginning now), write more often, and see my friends. This summer may be my first summer home in forever but I'm still keeping busy.

3. The Many Musical Adventures of Charlotte. Since I'll be home for most of the summer, I'm trying to go to a buttload of concerts. This Saturday I saw Matt and Kim play a free show at the Piazza at Schmidt's. It was quite a fun show, really one big party. I had a fantastic time. Still on my schedule are The Arcade Fire and Spoon (8/2), Warped Tour (7/16), and Paramore with New Found Glory and Tegan and Sara (8/4). I'm also volunteering at the XPoNential Music Festival on July 18th and I'm super-siked. A bunch of bands are playing that day, including Dawes, Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeros, Dr. Dog and Robert Randolph and the Family Band, all of whom I'm so pumped to hear.

4. Converting to Tumblr. As we near the first anniversary of this blog's existence, I think it may be time for a change. I love Blogger, truly. They're set-up is really easy, and they've allowed me to share my musings with the world, which is awesome. However, I always feel like blogging is such a big production on here: I feel like I'm expected to write a lot. I don't mind rambling, which I often end up doing, but it's rather time-consuming. Sometimes I just want to share a link to some other content or a song or picture and some brief thoughts on that. I think that Tumblr will allow me to do just that and still write some quality content. It'll also force me to stop myself from rambling. So I'll do a little internet experiment and if it doesn't work out I guess I'll find some way to fix it up. One is allowed mistakes on the internet...unless they involve nude photos or libel.

Thursday, May 27, 2010


5 Songs for Graduation Excluding "Good Riddance (Time of Your Life)" by Green Day and "Graduation (Friends Forever)" by Vitamin C:
1. "When You Come Back Down" - Nickel Creek
2. "One Clock" - Julia Nunes
3. "The Art of Falling" - Greg Holden
4. "When My Time Comes" - Dawes
5. "Everybody's Free (To Wear Sunscreen)" - Baz Luhrmann

5 Movies I Need to See:
2. Sex and the City 2. I almost went to the midnight premiere last night...almost.
3. Toy Story 3. The kid goes to college and leaves his toys behind. Tell me that's not poignant.
4. Iron Man 2. Notice how most of these are sequels...
5. Inception. Leonardo DiCaprio, Ellen Page, Marion Cotillard, Joseph Gordon-Levitt...but I'm not just in it for the cast...

5 Cramazing Things I've Done in the Past Few Weeks:
1. Went to Boston on my last band trip ever. Roller coasters were rode (at Six Flags New England), boats were partied on, trophies were won (BEST OVERALL HIGH SCHOOL PARADE BAND, SUCKAHS!), and a good time was had by all.
2. Saw Coheed & Cambria live. The mosh pit-induced bruises were very much worth it.
3. Took the AP Spanish Exam.
4. Finished AP Gov!
5. Got a Choral Scholarship to Drexel!

5 Concerts I'm Determined to See This Summer:
1. WARPED TOUR. July 16, Susquehanna Bank Center.
2. XPoNential Music Festival, July 16-18, Wiggins Park.
3. Honda Civic Tour featuring Paramore, New Found Glory, Tegan and Sara, and Kadawatha, August 4, Festival Pier.
4. The Dave. Wherever he may be.
5. The Spring Standards. At some point.

1 Serious Life Changes to Come in the Next Two Weeks:
1. Graduation from High School.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Men in Turbans Can Best Describe How I Feel

I've really got a flair for the dramatics, don't I? As much as I try to restrain myself from broadcasting my internal drama to the world, I felt like that last post had to be said. I can only write what I feel, and the other day I felt pretty horrible, which has been a recurring theme over the last couple of months. So, I'm doing my best to keep myself happy, which is a lot easier to do when you've stopped caring about school. I dramatically decreased my stress level by backing out of the US Government and English AP exams. I really wasn't going to get any credit for them unless I got a 5 and I really wasn't looking forward for studying. Either way, I'll be two steps closer to graduating tomorrow: I've got my Gov final in the morning (pray for me) and my graduation project presentation in the afternoon. I really can't believe this year is almost over. I expect the next month and a half to be a whirlwind of emotions...

4/30 - Gov final and Graduation Project Presentation
5/3 - Russ's Birthday!
5/4 - AP Spanish Exam. Fuck.
5/5 - Last Band Concert
5/7 - Phillies Game!
5/8 - Dale's Bridal Shower in New York. My family members are starting their own families. Weird.
5/9 - One year. :-D
5/14 - 5/18 - Last Band Trip to Boston!
5/19 - Denzel Washington. Fences. New York. Fuck yes.
5/22 - Coheed & Cambria concert!
5/23 - Last Band Banquet. :(
5/31 - Last Memorial Day Parade
6/2 - Last Meisters Concert. Possibly ever. Eek.
6/9 - 6/11 - Last Radnor finals!
6/13 - Baccalaureate
6/16 - GRADUATION. Holy nuts.

It's going to be quite a ride. I'm so glad my college friends are starting to come home, I've missed them all quite dearly.

Either I'm feeling better or I'm losing my mind because this is ridiculously entertaining. Thank you, Evan.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Dear Friend,

"I am writing to you because she said you listen and understand and didn't try to sleep with that person at that party even though you could have...I just need to know that someone out there listens and understands and doesn't try to sleep with people even if they could have. I need to know that these people exist. I think you of all people would understand that because I think you of all people are alive and appreciate what that means. At least I hope you do because other people look to you for strength and friendship and it's that simple. At least that's what I've heard.
So this is my life. And I want you to know that I am both happy and sad and I'm still trying to figure out how that could be."
- Stephen Chbosky, The Perks of Being A Wallflower

So I know you don't exactly know what I'm going through. No one knows that but me. Shit, I don't even know what I'm feeling half the time or more importantly why I'm feeling it. All I know is that I don't want to go through it anymore. I can't live like this, if you can call this living. I saw how you were, though, and I can relate. I'm so much like you. I'm just so cautious, though...I'm so caught up in the bad things that I can't see the good that this could do. Then I look at you. You seem like you're OK now. Maybe not totally OK but at least...better. That's what I want. I want to be better. That's never going to happen if I don't give this a shot. I don't have to just put up with this. You didn't.

I won't call this giving up. I'll call it just trying something different. And I know that I can talk to you and someday I will. Everyone deserves a shot at being OK...why not me? I'm still hopeful.

Kate Nash got it right. This time it will be different.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Bring the Future Faster

Things I Have to Do in the Next Three Weeks:
  • Create and give my graduation project presentation
  • Study for and take three AP exams (English Lit, Spanish, and U.S. Government and Politics)
  • Read Pride and Prejudice
  • Memorize "Spark of Creation" from the musical Children of Eden (a musical with no cast recording on iTunes, lovely) for my voice recital next Sunday,
  • Take my Gov final eventually, along with about 4 other tests this week
  • Find shoes for prom, get my dress tailored, book appointments and organize a limo
  • Plan an end-of-the-season party for the Middle School Guard
  • Save my choir teacher's job.
Things I Want to Do in the Next Three Weeks:
  • Sleep.
I guess it was too much to ask for an easy end to the year. On top of trying to graduate, the school district made some major budget cuts and decided to let go of 3 music teachers. Unfortunately our choir director is the third most junior music teacher in the district and could be on the chopping block. We're all working diligently to make sure he doesn't go and that the choral program and musical stay in tact next year, but sometimes I just don't feel up to the fight. I feel really bad about it, too, since I want to help him and the underclassmen out. I'm doing the best I can to make sure there is a musical and a choir next year, but sometimes my best doesn't feel like it's enough.

I really can't wait for APs to be over with. Fortunately and unfortunately all three of my tests fall in the same week. Even though my brain will be completely fried by that weekend, I'll be done with them, and I'll have an entire week to relax and get ready for our band trip to Boston the next weekend. I'm really looking forward to the trip this year; we're going to Six Flags, seeing Blue Man Group, and visiting Salem. Not to mention Boston is just a cool town :). The trip will be pretty bittersweet since it's my last, but I can't wait to spend five days with my favorite band/guard nerds.

Committing to a school feels kind of weird. I mean, the fact that I'll be in college in 4 months is bizarre itself; it feels like just yesterday that I was making a list of places I was remotely interested in. I'm happy to be done with the stress of choosing, though. If I still had that decision hanging over my head, these next few weeks would be even more torturous. I love Drexel, too. Accepted Students Day last Saturday was awesome and I can't wait to start in the fall. :)

I also saw the musical Rooms: A Rock Romance last Saturday with my dad at the Prince Music Theater in Philly. It was an intimate two-person rock musical centered around two Scottish musicians in the late 1970s - Ian, a gloomy guitarist, and Monica, an ambitious singer-songwriter. The two pair up when Monica asks Ian to help her write a song for her neighbor's bat mitzvah. They find they have not only creative chemistry but romantic chemistry and take the emerging punk rock scene by storm. Rooms is kind of the Scottish lovechild of Rent and The Last Five Years in that it is highly energetic but also rather intimate. I felt like I was really in the story, and felt every emotion the characters did. The songs are super-catchy and mostly appeal to fans of contemporary musical theatre (though my dad who generally doesn't like most rock musicals really enjoyed it). I would highly recommend Rooms. It's playing in the Prince Music Theater's Independence Studio until May 2nd and is presented by the 11th Hour Theatre Company.

Sunday, April 11, 2010


Once I received all of my college acceptances, I found myself having a hard time choosing between them. They all had great qualities: impressive programs, cool locations, fun extracurriculars, etc. The schools had so much in common that I just couldn't narrow my decision down to one school.

So I let their mascots do it for me.

I decided to compare each school's mascot, grading them on a scale from 1 to 10 in categories such as ferocity, appropriateness to school/location, effectiveness (how good their sports teams are) and cuteness. What transpired was the Ultimate College Mascot Showdown.

Ithaca College Bombers
Ferocity: 4. Ithaca College's mascot is a pilot who drops bombs in battle. The fact that he could blow up a small village in Pennsyltucky is rather frightening, but take away the airplane and weapons of mass destruction and you get a less than terrifying skinny guy in a funny hat and goggles. This guy's not exactly making the competition run for cover.
Appropriateness: 2. The Bomber was apparently conceived from the resemblance of Ithaca's baseball team's uniforms to those of the New York Yankees, also known as the Bronx Bombers. Otherwise, the mascot is rather inappropriate for a school with a high population of pacifists. Many anti-violence groups within the school have protested for a change of mascot.
Effectiveness: 5. Ithaca may be an NCAA Division III school, but their sports teams have had some success over the years. The football team has one the DIII National Championship three times and has one of the best women's soccer teams in the Division.
Cuteness: 0. There is nothing cute about a fighter pilot. Sorry.
Total Score: 11/40

Boston University Terriers
Ferocity: 5.
Though they were originally bred for fighting, Boston Terriers are known for having friendly personalities. Don't cross Rhett, the BU terrier, though. With his trademark snarl, he is probably one of the more stubborn members of his breed.
Appropriateness: 7. He may not be the scarlett red of BU's colors but he is a Boston Terrier after all.
Effectiveness: 6. The Terriers won the NCAA Division I Men's Hockey National Championship last year. Other than that impressive feat, the Terriers have had national success in men's basketball, field hockey, women's soccer, and women's lacrosse.
Cuteness: 7. Boston Terriers are adorable for wrinkly dog lovers like me, but can be a little stubborn and bratty. It's kind of a "different strokes for different folks" cuteness situation.
Total Score: 25/40

Hofstra University Pride
Ferocity: 8.
The Pride, represented by two lions, is pretty ferocious. One lion is scary enough, but two lions? That's pretty much a death trap. Unless it's Simba and Nala. Then you only really have to worry if you're a warthog or an antelope.
Appropriateness: 2. The name of the mascot stemmed from a PR campaign stressing pride in the school during the 1980s. Unfortunately this campaign was necessary for the school to save face after being stricken with financial troubles in the 70s and laying off 100s of employees. Oopsies.
Effectiveness: 1.
Hofstra's Division I men's lacrosse team is doing well this year, but the school plans to terminate their football program next year.
Cuteness: 3. Lion's are pretty cute...until they eat you.
Total Score: 14/40

Syracuse University Orange
Ferocity: 0.5. The only way an orange can hurt you is to squeeze juice in your eye, blinding you for about 3 minutes tops. Otherwise it's a delicious snack filled with Vitamin C for every other mascot to enjoy.
Appropriateness: 5. Yes, it agrees with the school's colors, but the weather in Syracuse is much too cold to grow oranges, despite the fact that there is an orange trees planted on SU's campus. The orange yield of those trees is a bit questionable.
Effectiveness: 7. SU's men's basketball team had a very successful season this year and their men's lacrosse team won the Division I National Championship last year. If only their football team was a little better...
Cuteness: 8. Bizzare as it may be, Otto the Orange (essentially a cheesepuff with a hat) is adorable. I'm a little upset that I didn't buy a plush Otto doll for myself last summer.
Total Score: 20.5/40

Drexel University Dragons
Ferocity: 10. Not many beings can claim to be more badass than a dragon. Those things can rip your head off with their massive claws and then scorch you until your entire body resembles burnt toast. Nothing beats a dragon.
Appropriateness: 7. Drexel gets major points for alliteration. Drexel Dragons has such a nice ring to it. I can only think of a handful of schools who create alliterations with their team names. Plus a dragon is pretty creative, representing the creative types found at this school.
Effectiveness: 6. The Division I women's basketball team participated in the NCAA Tournament last year and recently had one of their senior members drafted to the WNBA. Drexel's men's lacrosse team is also doing pretty well for itself this year and is #11 in the nation.
Cuteness: 3. The actual Mario the Dragon Mascot costume is pretty cute, but if you encountered a dragon in real life (not that you would), you probably wouldn't think so.
Total Score: 26/40

It was a very difficult decision, but I think the mascot comparison helped a lot. I find the strength of a school's mascot to represent the strength of it's academics. Nothing says "Hire me!" like an animal/fictional character/piece of fruit with an attitude.

So, the winner is...DREXEL! I will be joining Drexel's Class of 2014 in the fall and I couldn't be happier. I love the campus, the honors dorms, the program, Philadelphia, and of course Mario the Dragon. September, be swift!

Note: I did not actually base my college choice solely on mascots or athletics, nor am I looking to offend any of these schools because they're all great. But I am going to Drexel. :D

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Summer Song - A Poem

"Why do I wait for summer?
Why do I yearn for three sun-drenched months on my own?
When I sweat away my body weight
and run from killer insects in vain.
When I'm left to my own devices,
free from everyone who needs me.

I enjoy the crisp fall air,
the new experiences it brings.
A world full of color,
yet full of tears
as the dead of winter draws near.

Spring is fine, I do like spring,
teasing as it is.
The world is coming back to life,
but I'm still tucked away,
the last bud on the tree to bloom.

It is the uncertainty that summer brings
that makes it worth the wait.
Routine is gone, responsibility eased.
Nothing to be done, yet so much to do.
I cannot say what will happen in the summer.

I cannot say what will happen in my life."

Oh, spontaneous inspiration in English class, how I love thee.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Starting Now.

I'm tired.

Tired of feeling melancholy. Tired of losing interest. Tired of stressing over little things. Tired of being weak. Tired of bringing everyone down. Tired of being tired.

I want to be happy. I want to be enthusiastic. I want to get out of this funk. I want to be sure. I want to feel like myself again.

I'm ready.

I'm ready to do the work. I'm ready to be lighthearted again. I'm ready to be strong. I'm ready to live again.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Let the Wine of Friendship Never Run Dry

A Toast...

Here's to the last four years of Radnor Musicals.
Here's to memories.
Here's to an ever-growing family of friends.
Here's to the last four years.

Here's to Fiddler on the Roof.
Here's to getting a singing role as a freshman.
Here's to Fruma-Sarah.
Here's to Team Frums.
Here's to being six or so feet taller.
Here's to white face.
Here's to going to rehearsals during the week and doing nothing.
Here's to 100% Man.
Here's to some really really ridiculously good looking Russian kids.
Here's to dressing room dance parties.
Here's to tradition.

Here's to Les Miserables.
Here's to the Whores. Or should I say Lovely Ladies.
Here's to chastity baskets.
Here's to the barricade.
Here's to more peasant-wear.
Here's to stage crew.
Here's to I drink your milkshake brings all the boys to the yard.
Here's to drama.
Here's to possibly the most epic cast ever.
Here's to spending too many Meisters classes working on "Drink With Me".
Here's to THE BARN.
Here's to "One Day More".
Here's to "To love another person is to see the face of God."

Here's to Hello, Dolly!
Here's to Mrs. Malloy.
Here's to Hat Shop Girl.
Here's to pretending.
Here's to Ribbons. Ugh.
Here's to the Gibson.
Here's to girls with mustaches!
Here's to the staircase.
Here's to Octo-Mom.
Here's to salt.
Here's to the Honor Code stepping in.
Here's to "I'm Charlotte Dow and I like bananas in my cereal."
Here's to CAROL!
Here's to Hello, Horace.
Here's to minor freakouts
Here's to...let's not even go there.
Here's to glowin', crowin' and goin' strong.

And finally, Here's to Beauty and the Beast.
Here's to...shit, how are we gonna pay for this?
Here's to pleasant surprises.
Here's to Mrs. Potts.
Here's to possible shoulder damage...all in the name of art.
Here's to that fucking cart.
Here's to the best role-buddy ever.
Here's to the B Buddies.
Here's to epic costumes, epic sets, and an epic show.
Here's to Maaah, mamaaa, MAMMY!
Here's to confetti!
Here's to the best cast anyone could ask for. :)
Here's to the party car!
Here's to CHOCOLATE.
Here's to terrible lyrics.
Here's to a sold-out run.
Here's to "La Vie Boheme", Chili's style.
Here's to the light up roses.
Here's to an amazing cast party to wrap up an amazing show.
Here's to being home.

Here's to four amazing musicals, four amazing years.
Here's to family, to hard work, to fun.
Here's to wanting to relive it all and not change a thing.
Thank you.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

A Welcome Vacation

I'm not here. I've put my imaginary "do not disturb" sign on. I'm going on a mental vacation.

I'm at the airport, but I haven't decided where to go yet. I look at the departures board. Mexico is nice, but I'm too exhausted to bother to speak Spanish. Austria's too cold this time of year. The only place I would really want to go to in the Bahamas is Atlantis, and I really don't have the bank account for that right now. Florida is surprisingly cold this time of year. I love Costa Rica, but I was just there. Hawai'i? That sounds like a nice change of scene.

I board the plane and drift off into a deep sleep to the soothing tune of the American Airlines safety video music. Mmmhmhmmm...

A flight attendant wakes me up. I seem to have caught up on all the sleep I've missed over the past 2 months in one single flight. I step off the plane carrying only a backpack full of necessities and hail a cab. I politely ask to be taken to the nearest beach and receive a warm answer. Why can't people be this nice up north? I think. I don't even mind that it takes us half an hour to get to the beach. I need to slow down.

I pay the fare and step out of the car. Either this guy really likes me or he just wanted to rack up his cab fair because this is the most gorgeous beach I've ever seen. A few locals and I are the only patrons of this paradise today. I set up my towel and spend what seems like a lifetime simply watching the waves go in and out, feeling the sun warm my face, letting the soft crashing of the waves lull me into a trance. It's been a long winter and I need sunlight like Lindsay Lohan needs tabloid attention. This scene is perfect...but something's missing.

In my trance I find myself vacationing from my vacation. I'm out of the moment. I soar back to the RHS auditorium, to a scene where I'm laughing at Ian's ridiculous Gaston costume or intently listening to Jon describe the latest Wolverine comic book. I'm a sophomore, holding back tears as Clare and George sing "A Little Fall of Rain". I'm feeling the thrill of spinning a flag in the middle of Downtown Disney World as a freshman. I'm cuddled up to Russ watching a movie at home. I'm running through the streets of Dinklesbuhl, Germany, with Carolyn, Sarah and Mike trying not to get caught at that rock concert. I didn't need to spend all of this money to get away. I didn't need to literally escape to escape. All I needed was to get out.

Monday, February 22, 2010

My Hands They Shake, My Head It Spins

I think I've forgotten what it feels like not to be busy. I have a feeling my head is going to explode in the next two weeks, what with the musical, school, the middle school guard, and attempting to pick a college. At the same time, though, I feel useless when I'm not busy. This stress is mostly self-inflicted. Therefore I will try to visualize it the best way I know how: put it in a list.

Circumstances Increasing My Stress Level
  • Beauty and the Beast opens in 10 days. My high school musical theatre career will be over in 13 days. That doesn't seem right.
  • Chip's cart (which I have to push with one hand for most of the show) weighs a zillion pounds and is pretty hard to maneuver and I have very little arm strength nowadays. You'd think that color guard would make me stronger but I can hardly lift my 30 pound dog. So not only is the cart frustrating, it also makes me feel like a weakling. I can work with what I've been given, though, I'll figure it out.
  • We have yet to run through an entire act beginning to end.
  • My voice is slowly being beaten into the ground but I don't have the willpower to go on vocal rest. I tried today but kinda forgot about 20 minutes after I woke up and kind of gave up. Fail.
  • My Spanish teacher has taught us one of the three topics on our test tomorrow. Cool, Senora.
  • I'm letting myself go. I set the intention to work out everyday but just get tired. I also tell myself that I'm going to bed before 11 every night and don't actually enter my room until 11:30. Damn you, Olympics.
  • I have yet to finish teaching the middle school color guard their show. They have a competition in a month.
  • My senioritis is keeping me from doing anything productive.
  • I still don't have a definite first choice college. My mom isn't helping in the process much either, since every time I express positive feelings for a school she finds something wrong with it. I guess she just wants me to think about it. Thinking is too emotionally draining.
  • I really want to write some new music but I either don't have time to or have major writer's block. I am a frustrated artist.
I think these stress-inducing factors necessitate a Brightsides list.

Brightsides 2/21/10
  1. I finished a non-required reading book, Looking for Alaska by John Green, for the first time in a long time a week ago. I absolutely loved it and it gave me a lot to think about in terms of my relationships with people and life in general. It's a powerful, funny and obviously thought-provoking novel that I would recommend to anyone.
  2. Televised figure skating and ice dancing makes me happy. I think ballroom dancing should be an Olympic sport. I mean, ice dancing is basically ballroom on ice. They both require almost the same amount of athleticism. Maybe someday...
  3. Despite the stress it causes me, the show is actually coming together nicely. I recommend seeing it if you're in the area (shameless plug).
  4. I spent a lovely weekend at Drexel. :)
  5. While in the city I discovered Buffalo Exchange (thanks to Miss Carolyn Haynes), a Plato's Closet/Goodwill-esque store that buys and sells adorable gently used clothes. Somehow I managed to find a gorgeous Betsey Johnson dress that was originally $165 for $32. Win.
  6. I'm seeing Coheed & Cambria in May!
  7. I have an amazingly supportive boyfriend who makes me incredibly happy. :)
  8. I'm going on a cruise to Bermuda with my dad's family in August! I love cruises, and now I can gamble at the on-board casino, which may or may not be a good thing. :-P
  9. My music teacher's adorable German Sheppard puppy makes rehearsals much cuter.
  10. I learned how to play "You and I" by Ingrid Michaelson on ukulele. I may be cliche, but it's a cute song.

Friday, February 12, 2010

The Middle

I think I've got cabin fever. Thanks to the Snowpocalypse of 2o10, I've been stuck in my house since Tuesday night. School's been closed and it's too cold to go out and I don't even own a sled so I wouldn't have anything to do anyway. So all I can do is sit in my house, not do my homework and think about how lost in the world I am. I don't have a clue who I am. I mean, I guess I'm still forming an idea of who I am. Ever since I moved to Pennsylvania in fourth grade my life has been a series of questions...

Am I a New Yorker or a Philadelphian?
Am I a Catholic or...nothing?
Am I liberal or conservative?
Am I a feminist?
Do I value my family or my friends more? Is that a stupid question?
Do I really want to be an actress/writer/director/journalist/assistant to the regional manager?
Am I pro-life or pro-choice?
Do I really believe in all this alternative medicine that my mom has based her career on (i.e. Feng Shui, homeopathic medicine)?
Why do I feel uncomfortable discussing my personal life with people while I love hearing what other people are doing and feel like I have to keep up?
Do I want to go to school far away or nearby?
Am I really a part of the Class of 2010?
Am I missing out on the normal high school party experience?

Why can't I be fine the way I am?

The answers to most these questions have always been "in between". Most of my conscious years have been spent in the suburbs of Philly, but because of my family New York will always have a special place in my heart. Maybe I'll end up moving there someday. I didn't really like NYU when I visited it and sometimes I have a hard time explaining to adamant NYU-lovers why. I guess I'm just not ready to be thrust into the big city just yet. I'll take some baby steps before I can get myself there. I always knew I never belonged in Jersey. Even today the people I knew then are pretty different from myself. I needed to be somewhere a little more down to earth.

I guess I'm a Catholic in practice; I go to church as often as I can, I believe in God...I just don't have another explanation for why things are the way they are. I looked out onto the gorgeous mountains and valleys and rainforests of Costa Rica and I just thought...this can't be an accident. But at the same time the Catholic church itself makes me angry - the hierarchy, the shunning - it's kind of dumb. We should love everyone regardless of who they love or whatever choices they've made in their life. I guess I'm somewhere in between pro-life and pro-choice. I would never feel comfortable killing something that does have life and energy, but I'm not going to shun someone who has made that choice. Sometimes there's no other option. And why the hell should Congress decide what I do with my body for me? The majority of them are upper class men in their 50s and 60s, they don't know how I feel, or how some poor woman who can't even support herself feels. And yeah, I think men and women are all created equal, but I'm not a feminist. I'm not radical. Shit, I don't even know if I'm liberal. I'm so conservative in my own conduct - I'm not one to riot, I don't drink or do drugs, I cover up, there's a certain degree of comfort I think you should have with a person before you risk making babies with them - but politically, I'm pretty liberal.

I don't have an answer for the rest of the questions. I love my parents, but sometimes I need to get away from them. I guess that's healthy. I have my own life. I probably won't know what I want to do with my life until I try everything. Maybe this screenwriting thing will work out, maybe it won't. I won't know until I try. I'm not ashamed of anything I've done, but sometimes I have a hard time sharing it with people. I want to share girl talk with my friends but at the same time I'm afraid of being judged on what I have or have not done. It's dumb, but I guess it comes with being a girl. I'll shake it soon enough. Sometimes I feel like I'm missing out on the high school party scene, but truthfully I've never even been comfortable watching a bunch of people who I barely know get shit-faced. I'm one for small hang-outs. Senior week may promise a mix of this, and I'm coming to terms with that. I'm trying to learn how stick to my own values without sounding like a judgmental mom, all while actually having FUN. I work so hard that sometimes I forget what it feels like to have fun.

So I guess all these answers will come in due course. I know I'm going to change throughout my life. There's no definitive answer to the question of who I am, there's only the question of who I am right now. The journey comes in being comfortable with who I am right now. And that's what I need to work on.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

My Life's in Lists.

10 Songs I'm Digging Right Now:
1. Hit or Miss (Waited Too Long) - New Found Glory
2. 21 Guns - Green Day & the Cast of American Idiot the Musical (which is coming to Broadway!)
3. Walking the Dog - Fun.
4. Free Coffee - Ben Folds
5. Nicest Thing - Kate Nash
6. Help I'm Alive - Metric
7. Eat - Jack Conte
8. I'm Ready, I am - The Format
9. Quelqu'um M'a Dit - Carla Bruni (Yes, that is the first lady of France)
10. Lisztomania - Phoenix (I shouldn't have judged them on "1901" alone. They rock.)

5 Things I Want:
1. A MacBook. I feel this strong urge to turn this blog into a vlog. I've always loved making videos of my adventures in the world and am generally a very visual person. However, Microsoft just doesn't want me to make quality videos. I'm really sick of Windows MovieMaker. Not to mention the last time I tried to make a video using my webcam and post it to YouTube, it turned out all screwy. Though I've been a PC my whole life, I feel it's only practical to change at this point. I want to make videos, I want to make music. I want a Mac.
2. Some semblance of solidarity among my senior class. That's all.
3. The Olympics! I want them to be on now! I need my figure skating/Apollo Ohno in spandex fix.
4. A bigger iPod. I'm actually almost out of room on my Touch for the first time in forever.
5. A signed copy of Julia Nunes' new EP. Maybe I can write it off as a post-midterms present. That is, if I make it through this week...

3 Albums to Pick Up Now:
1. Transference - Spoon. This is a return to old-school Spoon. It's a little less clean than Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga, which I love. This album is full of great guitar riffs, drawn out jams, and just songs to chill out to. The sound overall is very raw and organic, like they just picked up their instruments and hit the record button. Some standout tracks include "Goodnight Laura", "Got Nuffin", "I Saw The Light" and "Is Love Forever?"
2. My Dinosaur Life - Motion City Soundtrack. Every song on this album is super-catchy. The lyrics are awesome, creative, and very relatable. It's full of ups and downs, dark moments paired with upbeat spirit-boosters. MCS makes some really great pop-punk-rock-whatever you call it. Key tracks include "The Weakends", "Disappear", "Her Words Destroyed My Planet", "Worker Bee".
3. Contra - Vampire Weekend. This is a fantastic follow up to the band's debut self-titled album. Vampire Weekend's classic prep school stories paired with African beats can be found on this album, with some new additions, such as auto-tune. The Columbia boys have established a sound, but not quite a formula, which in my opinion is a good thing. They're not afraid to take a few risks which definitely work. Some of my faves include "Holiday", "California English", "Diplomat's Son", "Run", "Cousins".

1 Song That Describes The Culmination of My High School Career:
"On Your Porch" - The Format. Give it a listen.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

The Bright Side

FACT: I am not nearly as positive as I am on this blog in real life. I'm insecure, anxious, and always get wrapped up in other people's problems. That's going to change. It has to. I need to become more like the strong person people think I am. I guess by focusing on the positive aspects of my life and the things I'm excited for I can erase some of this negativity and anxiety. So I'm going to start posting occasional lists of things I am excited for and things that make me happy. We'll call these "The Brightsides".

Brightsides 1/7/10

1. There's a very good possibility that I will at least have a two-hour delay tomorrow. Thank you snow gods.
2. I'm into 3 colleges :).
3. I'm going to a prom tomorrow night. For band.
4. I'm playing an Elvis-themed gig Saturday night at school with my band, the Upstairs Sound! It's been so long since we've played a show together and I miss rocking out on stage with them. Stop by if you're in the area!
5. I've got my first rehearsal for Beauty and the Beast on Sunday. Now that shall be interesting.
6. It looks like I'm recovering from whatever cold-type illness I've had for the past few days.
7. Costa Rica was so awesome and warm and just what I needed. I SAW MONKEYS! Thank you, Marty and Lyndea, for picking a totally kickass place to have your wedding.
8. I am absolutely determined to go to Bamboozle this year, despite the fact that it's right before my AP tests. And Warped Tour. It's going to happen.
9. I got a pretty dress from Kate Cummings, a new designer that my cousin is currently working for. I may be have a bit of familial bias, but her designs are pretty, simple and not too over the top. Her clothes all have a bit of an updated 60s feel to them, which I adore. Here I am wearing the dress at the wedding:

Check out Kate Cummings!
10. So much good music is coming out in the next few weeks. I'm particularly excited for Vampire Weekend's Contra. They've been streaming the album on their Myspace for a few days and I love everything I've heard thus far! I'm also particularly stoked for Motion City Soundtrack's My Dinosaur Life. If the first two singles ("Disappear" and "Her Words Destroyed My Planet") are any indication of what the rest of the album is going to be like, I'm expecting a pretty rockin' collection of tunes.

I feel better already. :)