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"This is the most exciting day of my life...and I was pulled on stage once to dance at a Bruce Springsteen concert."
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Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Tell It To Me Tuesday "Coming To My Senses"

I couldn't think of a question for today's Tell It To My Tuesday no matter how hard I tried. I felt like a good question was on the tip of my tongue, but nothing. I thought I smelled something cooking, but it went nowhere. I heard something good through the blogging grapevine, but it didn't pan out. Okay, so maybe none of those things really happened, but instead I decided to write a corny introduction to what did.

So today's question is all about your senses, all five of 'em.

What is your favorite taste, smell, touch/texture/sensation, thing to see/sight and sound?

And of course, what TITMT would be complete without the flip side?

What is your least favorite taste, smell, touch/texture/sensation, thing to see/sight and sound?

As always, remember this is just a springboard. The more creative you get with this the better!

If you are participating on your blog, the rules are simple:

1. Answer this question ON YOUR BLOG and THEN link back to it via the box below.
2. Leave a comment letting me know you played along.
3. If you are interested in adding the box to your site, please visit Mister Linky.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Write Back Weekend "How Much Is That Doogie In the Window?"

My whole life, I've considered myself a dog person. In fact, I'm probably the biggest dog person you'll ever meet whose never actually owned a dog.

The main reason I have never owned a dog is simple; my mommy wouldn't let me. If it had been just me and my dad I'm sure I could have convinced him. In fact, together we tried to convince her, too. After all, she thinks they're cute, but she always felt that she'd end up the one taking care of the dog, not giving us, or mainly me, any credit in that department at all. My dad understood my desire to want a dog. He had dogs as a child. He also knew that being an only child, a dog could be a welcomed addition.

When I was little, the story I got was that I was probably allergic to animals since I had a lot of allergies. All of that was fine and good, but even if I was allergic to dogs, I think I would have been okay. I say this because my best friend growing up had plenty of dogs, mainly Irish Setters, and I was around them all the time and I felt fine. Long story short, I think it was an excuse.

One time those very same relatives came across a stray dog who looked a lot like Benji. They kept him for a few days and contemplated keeping him in the long run, but truth be told they didn't really have the room for another dog. My friend's mom, who was good friends with my mom, tried really hard to convince her to let me keep it. Alas, it never happened.

So now that I'm finally on the verge of branching out on my own my to do list looks something like this: get house, get dog. This is because the person I am marrying loves dogs like me. He has faltered a bit over the years about getting a dog, but I won't let him. He worries about the responsibility factor. I think it's silly because we're luckier than most considering he works from home. Granted, that being said, I still have a sinking suspicion I'll be doing most of the dog taking care of it ness, and I'm okay with that, really.

Just recently, we've begun to talk specifics where dogs are concerned. See although we already know we want a dog, we don't really know what kind of dog we want. So far it seems the types of dogs he'd be inclined to get are the opposite of the ones I'd be inclined to get. Isn't that always the way? He also thinks we should have two so they can keep each other company. In theory I think it's a great idea, but I still say we need to acclimate to one dog first before we do any add ons. I know in some ways it's easier training them together, and this way one is less likely to feel dominant, but on the other hand, even just going on breed generalities, you really don't know what your individual dog is going to be like until you get it home. Breaking in two difficult dogs at the same time is probably my worst nightmare regarding all of this.

Although we are both getting this dog, I can't help but feel what I want should trump what he wants. Is that bad? I only say this because I do know that I'm going to be the one taking care of it more and because I am the person who has been patiently waiting for this day my whole life. He's had dogs before, so it's not new to him. I waited so long for this experience, I think it's only fair I have a big say. That being said, I think I want a smaller to medium sized dog, preferably one that doesn't shed a lot, is not a big barker and who is cute and loyal, but doesn't scare visitors.

What he wants however differs. He agrees on the size, the shedding and the barking, but he's not really into cute dogs and he kinda digs the fact that he'd have a dog that would scare other people or at least protect us. While there's a time and place for a dog like that, I am not into getting a dog that protects me right now. I've been unprotected by one for years and done just fine. I want one who will cuddle up with me and watch TV at night or be excited when I come home, not aloof. I also don't want a dog that will scare neighbors cause chances are then he'll scare me, too.

But the type of dog I want and the type of dog I think I would be are two different questions. All my life I've been convinced I must have been a dog in another life. I have a lot of hair that sheds a lot and I have a great sense of smell. I also get an overwhelmingly feeling of sadness when people are being cruel to animals in movies or on TV. I know it's fake, but I get so, so sad. Even if it's a cartoon. I get sad for people too, but not in the same way. That has to say something about me.

So, to help me decide which dog is most like me, I took the same quiz that Sharkbait did in order to figure out how I measured up. Here were my results:

You scored 42.9% Jack Russell Terrier
This pint-sized explorer is the Dr. Livingstone of the canine world. Always ready for adventure, the Jack Russell Terrier is known to wander off at a moment's notice. Her life is never dull, and entertainment is key. Accepting in nature, she makes friends easily and is usually the center of attention wherever she goes. Her high energy and upbeat personality make the Jack Russell Terrier a fun-loving part of any family.

You scored 28.6% Lhasa Apso
The Lhasa Apso may be petite, but she's very tough. Always ready to romp, her daily exercise requirements may leave her companions winded. Fond of her loved ones, she is likely to cuddle up with them at night, content to be doted on. Her long coat requires regular maintenance but is sure to turn heads when properly styled. The feisty and exuberant little Lhasa Apso has a well-earned reputation for her lovability.

You scored 14.3% German Shepherd
The German Shepherd is a workaholic. Intent on business, this loyal breed is always on patrol. Suspicious of strangers, she defends her territory with a fierce reproach. When it comes to affection, she is tender and loving toward her pack and feels a deep responsibility for their well-being. Mental and physical exercise both appeal equally to the German Shepherd, and her intelligence is further enhanced by her dedicated nature. When it comes to dependability, the German Shepherd has the market cornered.

You scored 14.3% Cocker Spaniel
The Cocker Spaniel feels the need to please. She tends to become overly submissive in her mission to make everyone happy but makes up for it with her sensitive nature. A brisk walk around the block is right up her alley, but she prefers to spend a good part of her time indoors. Her silky hair tends to become tangled, and regular grooming sessions are necessary to keep her looking her best. The accommodating Cocker Spaniel is truly a loving and trusted friend as well as an ideal companion.

So let's review the results, shall we? In some ways, I completely see the comparisons. However the terrier, which I'm the most like allegedly, is probably the description I least relate to. I like entertainment, but I like watching it and creating it, not being part of it. I never like to draw attention to myself either. I've also never been too keen on adventure in it's truest sense of the word. Meanwhile I like the fact that the Lhasa Apso is described as petite, but tough. I think that's a fair comparison to me. I also think my hair looks good when properly styled.

At first I didn't see how I could be like a German Shepard, but I guess I too am suspicious of strangers and remain guarded until I know someone. I also take responsibility and dedication seriously. Then there's the Cocker Spaniel, a breed I've always loved, that is described as being eager to please, preferring indoors and a sensitive, trusting soul. I also feel that this description is a lot like me.

So what have we learned? Apparently I match four very different breeds, but none of them overwhelmingly so. What does this say about me? To me this says that more than likely, I'm a mutt or a mixed breed which I truly think I'd be. I also wonder if that's what I'd lean towards getting, too and that's why my indecisive nature makes it so hard to pick just one. After all, I've never fit into any category and sometimes ways people have perceived me have even surprised myself. Like most dogs, I feel I am a loyal person and if you treat me well, I'll be your best friend for life. That and buy me dinner once and awhile.

Of course all this doesn't mean that the mixed breed of the Labradoodle still doesn't crack me up. But going on about that would be a lot like barking up the wrong tree, now wouldn't it?
Thursday, February 21, 2008

Same Old Song

Note: This post was written before the performances for this week's American Idol aired. Most of my comments still apply, but there could probably be some additional comments added, provided I had the time which of course, I do not. Still for AI fans, or AI haters as the case may be, enjoy!

This week launches the first real episode of American Idol of the season. Sure, technically the show has been back for a good month or so now. I don't know how many of you feel about it though, but I am bored by the horrible auditions. I'd much rather hurry it up and get to the good stuff.

Although it's season seven and so most people know what to expect, they are trying to throw in a few zingers this year to keep you intrigued. For one thing, the singers were allowed to use instruments to showcase their skills during one round of auditions and presumably, will be able to do the same thing at some point during the actual competition. For another, there is said to be a more concerted effort this season for you to get to know the contestants and thus hopefully make more of a connection with the singer after the competition has ended (see boost their record sales).

But there's another issue, and thus the main reason why I am writing this post, that American Idol has struck a sour note early on. This is in regards to the selection process of the candidates themselves. You see I can still remember season one of American Idol. I'll always have a soft spot in my heart for this season as it was one built upon no expectations. We didn't know that poor Nikki McKibbin really could get so far on the mean-spirited redials of future Vote For the Worst type fans. Not only did we not know what to expect, we didn't know who to expect. That's because American Idol was just that. It was America's chance to pick somebody from obscurity and fulfill their American dream. This is why a winner like Kelly Clarkson was so perfect. She was just a girl from the South who happened to sing really well and amazingly, had been in large part undiscovered before the program.

But at the seasons have evolved, so have the contestants. No longer are just the unknown wannabes trying out for the show. The people who are trying out are also okay with not winning the whole thing. In fact, if you're someone like Daughtry you were better off NOT winning as now he had a chance to make the kind of music he wanted to make instead of being pigeon holed into puke worthy (Taylor "cough" Hicks) type pop, only to be dropped from a label consequently at a later date. Now unsigned artists and savvy marketeers are trying out, sitting right next to that undiscovered girl who worked at Dairy Queen. Some might say there's nothing wrong with this as they are still technically unknowns, but I say failed deals and child star pasts are still an advantage over someone who has no experience and essential, no connections, to anyone in the business, period.

This is why every season since that first one has had a contestant or two that has raised some eyebrows. But now it's worse. Maybe it's because the proverbial well has run dry, but this season, more than any other, is full of stories behind the stories that makes the American dream seem more less and less about being plucked from obscurity and more and more about previous history.

But before I continue, let me say this one side note about American Idol. I am beginning to get really annoyed that they focus so much time on certain people so that you get attached, only to let them go. For instance, Angela Martin the single mom whose child was disabled and then her dad died during the process, too (not to be confused with the other African American contestant whose dad died) and Josiah Leming, the young emotional guy who lived out of his car were two of my favorites. Neither one of them made it though which baffled me because some of the people who went in their place I never saw. It seems obvious from the way they edited it that they wanted us to focus on them for some reason, but why I'll never know.

Meanwhile some of the people who DID make it are a far cry from being unknowns which changes things for me.

My personal favorite "back story" is the one contestant, Carly Smithson, the Irish girl who tragically tried out before, only to find out she didn't have a work Visa to stay. It's since come out though that Carly Smithson is actually already was a singer who recorded an album. I didn't recognize her because her album wasn't a hit, and she didn't enter the competition under her maiden name, but her married name instead. In fact, I realized that under her old name, before she got married, I actually have a song by her LOL

There's already controversy brewing over whether or not this should matter because she is talented and currently, unsigned but I think it should, at least to some extent. I think the public should at least be informed and then make their decisions accordingly. If it doesn't make a difference to you after knowing, fine. But her connections to the business run deeper than some others and I for one refuse to believe this doesn't contribute to her place in the competition. Interestingly enough, on her album she barely sounds like the same girl who tried out for American Idol. Instead she sounds an awful lot like former child actress turned singer/songwriter, Danielle Brisebois who wrote many songs for the album. I know Danielle's sound because her album, although never a hit, has always been one of my favorites. Her one song, "Just Missed the Train" in fact has been recorded by her, Carly and former Idol contestant, Kelly Clarkson. If all of this is just coincidence I'll shut up, but I don't think it is.

But Carly, although the biggest story, isn't the only story. There's also country crooner Kristy Lee Cook who apparently recorded an album and was ultimately dropped by her label before, too. Another country tinged contestant with a backstory is Amy Davis who is a part time model who also appeared as a reality show contestant on Nashville Star. Or how about Jason Castro who allegedly was on MTV's Cheyenne show as her boyfriend or Jason Yeager who once appeared as a contestant on ABC's Making the Band? Maybe you recall the daughter of a Motown back up singer, Syesha Mercado who was on short-lived ABC show called The One, as well as appearing in numerous commercials? What about Kady Malloy? She's the girl who showed off her ability to do impressions during her audition. What she didn't advertise however, was the fact that she already recorded an album songs from which can be heard here. Perhaps you were intrigued by long haired "rocker" Robbie Carrico who is no stranger to show business and in fact, used to be in a pop band called Boyz-N-Girlz United and looked like this.

So you might say a lot of these contestants have entered competitions before, but it's not like they won them, so all bets are off. Only to this I say au contraire, as seventeen year old David Archuleta not only was a contestant on the most recent Star Search, he actually WON. Sure he won when he was a minor, but he won regardless. If you can just can go on reality show after reality show, where's the fairness in that? All this being said, just wait three years. By then, America's Got Talent winner Bianca Ryan will be sixteen and thus eligible to enter and win this competition, too.

All of this reminds me of the semi-controversy that surrounded previous Idol contestant Mario Vasquez. Mario made the top twelve in season four only to mysteriously drop out due to reasons that are still unclear. At the time, the consensus was that Mario was already signed with J Records and that once that information surfaced, it would have been a conflict of interest for him to continue. Regardless of whether or not he was signed at the time, he did ultimately get signed and released an album which makes you believe there was some weight to this rumor. In this case the only difference would have been that the artist was signed currently, not in the past. It's a minor technicality if you ask me, but a technicality nonetheless.

When try outs were going on this season I remember hearing about Philadephia native, Lindsay Pagano auditioning. Lindsay, along the same lines as Carly, already had an album released in 2001 when she was only fifteen years old and around here, there were local articles remarking about whether or not it was fair for her to try out. All of it was a moot point, however, considering she didn't allegedly make it past the first round and her audition was never shown on television. Ouch. Her catchy single, Everything U R was even used as the theme song to now defunct WB show, Maybe It's Me as well as an AOL campaign. Pagano argued that none of this mattered as that was then, this is now and now she's just an unsigned artist who is trying to make a name for herself like everyone else.

So as I watch the top 24 performances this week, I watch not with baited-breath, but instead with cautionary interest. It's early, but if I'm rooting for pure, unknown talent I'd go with contestants like Asia'h Epperson, Brooke White or Danny Noriega. They remind me of the days when the competition gave you that feel good feeling about watching someone's dreams come true. I would include rocker nurse Amanda Overmyer in that list but she's a little intense and to be honest, quite scary to me. Of course there are a slew of wild cards who have yet to be seen that may have something worth mentioning, too. This is not to take away anything from some of the more "experienced" contestants. If nothing else, they should make for good entertainment. And who knows? Maybe there will be a male who has to be eliminated for a shady past. Stranger things have happened after all. Then contestants like Josiah can be added to the competition where he should have been all along.
Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Tell It To Me Tuesday "It's A Dog Eat Dog World"

Today's TITMT question is being posted a bit later, but actually that's on purpose. This is because I had to post not one but two answers to Write Back Weekends since I fell a bit behind. Now that I've given all five or so of you sometime to digest, I figured it was safe to forge ahead. I even have a new, original post to put up this week. It's amazing what a four day weekend can do for ya!

Nat actually suggested this question awhile back and I just got around to using it now. It actually has some significance to me in regards to timing, but the TITMT part is never about me. Now it's on to YOU.

If you were a dog, what breed would you be?

If you are participating on your blog, the rules are simple:

1. Answer this question ON YOUR BLOG and THEN link back to it via the box below.
2. Leave a comment letting me know you played along.
3. If you are interested in adding the box to your site, please visit Mister Linky.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Write Back Weekend "I Love It! I Love It! I Love It!"

In an attempt to somewhat honor Valentine's Day being last week, I decided to make the TITMT question about love. However I didn't really want to write about love in the traditional sense since somehow there was a been there, done that vibe about it.

So instead, in AOGB's grand tradition of list making, I decided to ask everyone about particular favorites. The favorites I chose were arbitrary and the first ones that came to my mind. That being said, if you decided to play along and wanted to take away or add as necessary, who am I to judge? You'll also notice that in my version of favorites, it is almost next to impossible to choose just one. I pluralized wherever I deemed fit so you can feel free to do the same.

Favorite Food(s)- My favorite foods have changed over the years, not unlike hairstyles or clothing trends. The food I most want also changes dependent upon the mood I'm in. There are some key ingredients though to the best foods for me. One, the spicier it is, the better it is. Two, the hotter it is in temperature, that's good too. Of course there are exceptions to this rule. For instance, good sushi is hands down, one of my favorite foods. I love to make it spicy by adding wasabi to the mix, but it's not the kind of food you want to eat warm. I also love salads that might have a warm ingredient or two added to it, but the salad itself need not be heated. My other favorite foods are soup and chicken, not necessarily in that order. Ethnicity wise I think I'd go with Chinese though I admit to being an equal opportunity eater. In fact, it's probably much easier to say what I don't like in this category, but I digress.

In a sub category, my favorite places to eat out would probably be a good diner (New Jersey is crawling with them) or Cheesecake Factory (though you have to go at an off time). I also have been known to enjoy indulging in a great Olive Garden meal from time to time as well as Indian, hibachi....

Favorite Movies- This is one category that you think would keep evolving, but I haven't really watched that many movies in the last ten years or so that I feel I have to own. I've been entertained, sure, but not to the point where they make a best of list. My favorite movie after all this time is still Some Kind of Wonderful which is now (gulp) twenty-one years old. My second favorite movie came out ten years later. That film is called That Thing You Do. Incidentally, my memories of this movie and every time I've watched it since have been known to release some sort of endorphins into my body. After that the lines get a little blurry as there are so many movies I have loved over the years all for different reasons. I was always a huge fan of eighties teen angst so movies like For Keeps, Pretty in Pink and Say Anything definitely would make the top ten, too. Then again, I could seriously go on and on here.

Favorite Drinks- It all depends on the category we're talking about. If we're talking about a regular thirst quenching type of drink, I'd go with a good lemonade on a hot day. Nathan's lemonade is my favorite as it's not too sweet, not too sour. Really the right mix is everything. I also enjoy drinking water with lemon although it took me many years to get to that point after fighting it for so long. Along those same lines, my favorite alcoholic drink is probably a Long Island Iced Tea. Some people think this is a rather strong drink given how much alcohol it contains, but it all depends on whose making it. If they make it right, it's rather tasty. A good Corona Light ain't too shabby either. Nor is a nice glass of wine.

Favorite Bands/Songs- Another category that has changed with the tide, I still have a soft spot in my heart for many artists that are no longer on the top of the charts. Bands/singers like Jude Cole, Jellyfish, Huey Lewis and the News, Rick Springfield and Squeeze would definitely make the list, among others I'm sure. Currently I'm really digging people like Rilo Kiley, Pink, Justin Timberlake, Saving Jane, One Republic...

Favorite Memory- Now that I've been alive thirty plus years I have to say that I am definitely the kind of person who subscribes to the "don't know what you got till it's gone" school of thought. I mean I suppose I kind of knew what I had, but I'm a nostalgia freak all the same. I have so many great memories for different reasons, but my favoritest memories probably revolve around my youth, under the age of eleven, growing up in the eighties. Attached to that time are so many people, places, movies, music and television memories, too. If I hear a song or see a certain person, the memories come flooding back. One one hand I love that feeling, on another it reminds me of how much time has transpired.

Favorite TV Shows- Over the years this answer has changed a lot, but one thing that never seems to change is that the shows I seem to enjoy the most often are the ones that end of getting canceled. It's disappointing really to the point you think I wouldn't keep on trying, but somehow, someway I do. My So-Called Life is probably the best example of this, but there have been many shows that fit this description since then (Once and Again, Cupid, Relativity, American Dreams, Life Goes On...I could go on and on actually). So I suppose it should only seem fitting that my current favorite show is Friday Night Lights, a show that may or may not return. I also love October Road which probably isn't far behind FNL but without the huge fan base to keep it afloat. I also love Monk but that's probably the only hit on my list, besides some reality guilty pleasures and things like that, of course. Really this is an abbreviated list. If you knew me you'd know that was true. It's really a post in itself.
Saturday, February 16, 2008

Write Back Weekend "You Can Tell Everyone, This Is Your Song"

This Write Back Weekend response is a week late and a true answer or two short, but finally posted nonetheless!

Soon after I posted last week's TITMT question I realized that it was a mistake. Okay, maybe calling it a mistake is a mistake in itself. Basically I realized I was painting myself into a corner regarding the whole "write back" aspect. I mean I've had a year or so to think about the songs that are special and significant to me. I don't know why I thought thinking about it for another six days or so would bring me to a solution.

I also appreciate and respect the fact that some of you delicately pointed out no one can make this decision for me. This is something I knew already and know will work out in time, but it's just that picking ONE song is such a hard thing to do for me. This is for a variety of reasons. One, as anyone who knows me knows, I have a massive musical collection. So the same thing that applies to life also apparently applies to wedding song selection. Sometimes less is more.

Just the process of finding someone to play music at the reception was difficult for me. The only thing that was easy was having faith in knowing that I wanted a DJ. The reason behind this was simple, I didn't like the way most wedding bands I had heard sang songs I otherwise loved. Why sit there wishing it sounded like the original when you could have the original itself? That coupled with the fact that the cost of a GOOD wedding band can be insane, especially here in New Jersey. Only one time during this whole process did I feel a twinge of regret about not going with a band. That was the day I was at a bridal show where an excellent band was playing. They probably could have changed my mind. Then again, if I knew their prices, I think I would have gone back to being happy about my original decision.

Having a DJ is actually a bigger deal to me than it is to most. After all, the DJ company is full of professionals who know the music everyone wants to hear the most at weddings, right? Wrong, at least in my book. That's because I hate, hate hate attending weddings where every song is so played out. If I never hear Celebration or Mony, Mony again in my lifetime, I think I'll be just fine.

The same goes for organized dances. Call me a curmudgeon, but I detest them. But as everyone has delicately pointed out to me, many guests love them so my compromise is we'll do one, but no one is dragging me on the dance floor to participate. In fact, I think that's a good time for me to take a bathroom break, don't you?

I simply feel there are just so many good songs out there, many that are good enough for a wedding in fact, but never got their fair shot. So I want to add some good songs that everyone knows to the mix, but songs they most likely didn't hear at the wedding they went to the weekend before.

Which brings me to my first problem, our wedding song.

I have a very hard time choosing a first dance song because we want to be very careful not to pick something that's been played out. Also at hand, is the type of song itself. We have toyed with going non traditional and doing something more upbeat but still romantic like Dean Martin's "Ain't It A Kick In the Head". I am going to play that song, somehow, someway, but if it was a first dance song we'd need a routine to go with it.

As some of you have pointed out Organized Wedding Dances are all the rage right now. Interestingly enough an organized "fakeout" dance like the one in the link was exactly what we were planning on doing all along. In fact, we were seriously thinking about doing this so much that when this video leaked on You Tube, my fiance was highly disappointed that someone thought of it first. Now we know there are people who are going to think we are copying dances like these if we went this root, depsite our best efforts to explain that we're not.

So what's the final result? I don't know. There are no easy answers in this post. Instead it's just an opportunity to vent. Of course when we do ultimately select it I'll be sure to fill everyone in on what we chose. You're all part of the process now after all. Short of inviting you to the wedding, it's the least I can do.
Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Tell It To Me Tuesday "All You Need Is Love"

First things first. I want to say a thank you to those of you (namely Sharon) for wondering where I am sometimes. Although there's no easy answers, I have not forgotten about this blog or those of who who despite everything, make the time to visit me. My visits might take a little extra time, as it seems it also seems hard to FIND the time to post these days. That doesn't mean though that I'm not interested. Maybe one day I'll even find the time to write a post or two as to why certain things have delayed me as of late. For now though you'll just have to take my word on it and take my word whenever I give it too...whenever that may be.

Along the same lines, my Write Back Weekend answer is going to be a little late this week since obviously the weekend, and even Monday, passed. The most frustrating part being is that I'm so not a last minute person in life. I'm actually quite punctual and reliable. I guess because I spend so much time trying to keep all my ducks in a row in real life that something has to give. Unfortunately this blog has been the casualty. Rest assured though I always find the time. Somehow, someway!

Given the theme of this week's holiday, I want to know what your favorite things are in life. The list of ideas is as follows...

Favorite Food
Favorite Movie
Favorite Drink
Favorite Bands/Songs
Favorite Memory
Favorite TV Show
Favorite ???

The ??? one is where you come in. Assuming you're playing along on your blog, or even if you're not, I want you to add something to the list. Depending on how many favorites I get added here in the comments, I may even update this post accordingly.

If you are participating on your blog, the rules are simple:

1. Answer this question ON YOUR BLOG and THEN link back to it via the box below.
2. Leave a comment letting me know you played along.
3. If you are interested in adding the box to your site, please visit Mister Linky.

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Tell It To Me Tuesday "They're Playing Our Song"

I'm coming to find that one of the hardest things about planning a wedding is going to be picking out the music. Or as Rainman would say, "Yeah, definitely. Definitely the music." It's not because I don't have a lot of music. In fact, it's the exact opposite. While some girls worry about flowers, I worry about my top 40 playlist.

So with the upcoming nuptials in mind, here is a multi-faceted question for you to mull over:

1. If you're married, what was your wedding song?
2. If you're not married, what song would you wish was your wedding song?
3. Do you have any suggestions for someone like me? (don't be offended if I gag at a choice or two. Like I said, I am very selective about the musical company I keep. I just want to see what y'all come up with.)

If you are participating on your blog, the rules are simple:

1. Answer this question ON YOUR BLOG and THEN link back to it via the box below.
2. Leave a comment letting me know you played along.
3. If you are interested in adding the box to your site, please visit Mister Linky.
4. If you have any questions or you're confused just ASK!

Monday, February 04, 2008

Write Back Weekend Monday "Memories, Like The Corners of My Mind"

For the first twenty- two years or so of my life, I prided myself on having a good memory. In fact, I find it ironic that having a good memory is one of the things I most remember about my "youth".

Not only did I recall things that pertained to me, I also recalled random things, usually related to pop culture trivia. For example, I loved to watch the Dateline blurbs where they'd give you three events and then they'd supply you with three different years those events could have occurred. Even before the years were revealed, I had a very good accuracy rate of guessing within a two or three year range. My mom was always amazed by this since many of the events were before my time. I could never really explain it, but it seemed as if I almost had a photographic memory for pop culture related dates and times. Now if only I had been able to do that for all of my studies in school I would have it made.

In the past eight years or so or though I have noticed that this talent has diminished somewhat. I say the past eight years because I know I can apply my lack of specificity to a certain decade, the 2000's. Say to me St. Elmo's Fire, I say back to you 1985. Remind me of Paula Abdul's "Straight Up" debut, I can tell you the year was 1989. But ask me what year say A Beautiful Mind was released, and I can give you a time frame, but not the exact year itself, not without looking anyway. See those first twenty-two years or so remain ingrained in my brain. The last eight years or so, not so much.

There are a few different theories I have on this. One theory is that as we get older, the brain only has room to store so much, sorta like a closet. As a result, our short term memory needs to make room to fit everything in, so it starts picking and choosing, clearing out miscellaneous thoughts the mind deems expendable. This would explain why many Alzheimer's patients can't tell you what they ate for lunch, but they can tell you what they were wearing the day they met their wives back in 1952.

My other theory is also related to age, but in a different respect. I find that the older I get, the less impressionable I am. I can still tell you all about those first movies that I loved or those sleepovers that I had because they were such monumental memories to me, at least at the time. I can still hear certain songs today and instantly be transported to the time and place that song was popular. But the older we get, the less of those "milestones" there are to capture. Suddenly a new show, song or movie seems less memorable because YOU'VE been there and done it all before. Meanwhile some teenager, somewhere is obsessing over the likes of Gossip Girl the way I once oohed and ahhed over My So-Called Life.

And yet if either theory is true, our first memories, as asked of us from last week's TITMT, don't fall in line with this train of thought. Instead our first memories are often random in nature, not necessarily pertaining to anything monumental. It's almost as if that part of our brains was shut off and then one day, suddenly it was activated, just like that.

The very first memory I have is fuzzy, not unlike the footage you might see from an old movie. Whether or not I applied that to the memory as creative license isn't really important, but it is there. It's a memory of my nana, my dad's mother, who passed away shortly after the memory itself. She was sick with cancer and died in the early eighties so I never really got to know her as a grandmother, or as a person. I do remember though being about three or four and having this doll. It was a learning doll that had buttons, zippers and laces all over it in order to encourage children to explore these concepts. Anyway, I can clearly remember my nana hiding mints in the pockets of this doll. My mission, should I chose to accept it, was to figure out how to get those pockets unzippered, laced or buttoned so that I could get to my reward. It was pretty clever of my nana, looking back on it.

This is why memories are fickle. I know she died shortly after this, but her actual death I do not recall. Perhaps it was way too complicated of a concept for me to grasp at such a young age, so instead the mind made provisions for me, allowing me to hold on to a much smaller memory which in turn, served a much bigger purpose.

We may never know why remember things we want to forget and forget things we want to remember. All we know is that memories themselves, make us who we are today.

Remember that.



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