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11 October 2010 @ 07:19 pm
I miss you.

(Yes, you.)

What's goin' on?
13 June 2010 @ 09:49 am
Wow. It’s really only been two weeks since I got here?

I spent my first few days meandering around the area near my apartment—and when I say “meandering” I actually mean “speed-walking for hours in terrible shoes until my back, knees, ankles, and feet were completely out of commission, oops.” My neighborhood is quite lovely: quiet, safe, peaceful; but I feel uncomfortable finding too much joy in these things, even, because of their racist and classist implications, however unintentional. Rob’s first impression of the area is probably the most accurate one: “It’s so…gentrified.” The politics of city growth, I am learning, are complicated.

Rob visited from Friday through Sunday, and we hit a bunch of places, including the Museum of Sex (not as impressive as its price tag might lead one to hope but worth it to learn about The Sex Lives of Robots) and the MoMA (my favorite exhibition was Rising Currents, which featured artists’ renderings of possible NYC solutions to climate change-induced rising sea levels). We also went to Prospect Park’s weekly farmer’s market, some vegetarian restaurants, and the NYC Build-a-Bear store where I bought my bear kimono. Additionally, we got to meet up with mutual friends from school and play tag on a Battery Park playground with Caroline.

I’d been looking for a part-time job, and for a little while, I thought I had a sandwich-making gig lined up with Vox Pop (a café I have seen described on the web as one of the most invigorating places around, and alternately, a “shiteous hipster outpost”). However, when I went in to train, I discovered that “training” was actually a six-hour uncompensated screening shift, and I was up against about a dozen other would-be baristas. Which would have been ok, had anyone informed me that this was going to happen, especially after I specifically asked about their hiring process.

The internship, on the other hand, is going phenomenally. I love the people, and I love what I do. I have my own cubicle where I hide, reading reading reading all day long. On my first day, Naomi handed me a stack of 60-some pages of copy for the upcoming magazine and told me to have fun. So I did! Well, mostly, apart from when I realized I do not understand comma usage and, to make matters worse, neither does anyone else in the world. :\

After my second day, my coworkers took me to a party hosted by Tablet, a prominent Jewish-interest web mag, in celebration of its first year up and running. I had the chance to meet a number of people who come up regularly in JBC conversation and who are names to know in the wonderful world of Jewish publishing. I made my first priority trying to make a dinner out of hors d’oeuvres without looking like a pig. I put this before my other priority—trying to mingle without looking dreadfully uncomfortable—because I always like to have my top goal be something I am capable of accomplishing.

Rob came back to visit again at the end of the week on his way home from seeing our friend Ashley in Pennsylvania (he brought me farm animal sprinkles from Amish country, which I will use on all my vegan cupcakes, and a shotglass that says “I ♥ INTERCOURSE PA"). We had a fancy Italian lunch with my bestest friend from my Japan program, Rachel, and her mom. Unfortunately, Rob wasn’t feeling as much better from the mysterious stomach sickness he’d had in PA as he’d thought, and walking 20 blocks to lunch may not have helped. He ended up spending the rest of his stay curled up in a ball in my bed, only able to manage the occasional sip of diluted orange juice, and running a fever. I accompanied him to New Haven via Amtrak to make sure he was all right till safely in the hands of his parents, which would have been a much less traumatic experience had our train not been two hours late leaving.

The stress of that compounded with all the stress I’ve been collecting from summer part-time job and fall for-real job hunting has put me in a bit of an icky place for the time being--though it's probably the typical one to end up in following graduation (see: "Oh, the Places You'll Actually Go")

I am trying to be optimistic and excited for the future, but I’m so, so scared. I can’t find part-time work to do alongside my internship, because, in the rare event a business is hiring, either I don’t have the right qualifications for the particular job, I’m generally too well-educated, or nobody likes seasonal employees. I also have no idea how to get into the sort of real work I want to do—even if I could find something that would put me closer to children’s publishing, I’m worried it will only be another unpaid internship, and I can’t afford that. And what if I get into the work I think I want to do and don’t like it? And what happens to my hopes of traveling and doing more adventurous and exciting things if I get tied to a full-time job? I’m most terrified of becoming boring. I want to meet people and go places and do things. If I come home too tired to do much of anything but read a little and sleep, when will I find the time to do my own creative projects and give anything back to the world?

Through college, I could maintain a feeling of direction because I really enjoyed what I was studying. Now, however, I have to face the realization of my own overwhelming responsibility. I’m the only one who can make my life what I want it to be. And that might be a hell of a lot easier if I had any clear sense of what I want.

tl;dr I do actually seem to ♥ New York, but our relationship status may be destined to remain “it’s complicated.”
Current Mood: anxiousanxious
Current Music: Who'd Have Known- Lily Allen
31 May 2010 @ 10:46 pm
Hello! Well, it’s certainly been ages, hasn’t it? It’s a wonder I remember how to post an entry.

I made it out of college alive! Things got a little sketchy toward the end: the powers that be hung a heap of strangulation hazards around my neck, put my name on the list of a couple mysterious societies (some with downright invasive handshakes), and said things about me behind my back in Latin (curses? I don’t know. Could have meant anything, really). But I made it, and it feels like far more of an accomplishment than I was expecting.

Because Skidmore has the most wonderfully unregimented graduation line-up I have ever heard of, I got to walk across the stage to receive my diploma between Rob and Scott, the two people who have meant the most to me in college. And we were part of string of everyone from my house and everyone from Rob’s house—pretty much the people I’ve known best at Skidmore. Somehow much more symbolic and satisfying than alphabetical order.

Before graduation, the seniors had a week of time left to their own devices--or more accurately, vices. For most, it meant getting drunk and staying drunk—probably to counteract the sobering realization that they will most likely rarely see any of the incredible (and even the not so incredible but still somehow important) friends they made over the past four years. It was this way for me, too, at least if you replace “getting drunk and staying drunk” with “playing videogames and then, um, playing more videogames.”

This week followed a semester of phenomenal classes that made me painfully conscious of how much I have to miss out in the real world. Even though they may have deprived me of much promise of a social life and kept me functioning at a stress level my mind and body couldn't quite withstand, I loved Queer Fictions, American Environmental History, and Children's Literature (education perspective, not literary). Part of me is glad to be done having classes all day and homework enough to last into the wee hours of the night with no time to take a breath (not if I’m going to get everything done as best I can, anyway), but part of me is uncertain that I want to be anything but a student in the most traditional, academic sense, ever.

I wrote my senior capstone paper on The Well of Loneliness, a novel my second-reader quite astutely described as “a hot mess.” By the end of the project, I swore I would never write a word of literary criticism again in my life, and I was fully convinced of that until about three days later when I got comments back from my professors, who thought my analysis was pure gold. As always, I am a whore for praise, particularly praise I’m sure I don’t deserve.

Grad school is a vague aspiration for the future since I discovered that master’s programs in children’s literature, children’s publishing, and children’s fiction-writing all exist. But for now it’s (hopefully) valuable real world career experience time!

Tomorrow (I can’t believe it’s so soon, but yes, really, tomorrow!) I’m moving to New York City for the summer. I have an internship in Manhattan doing editorial work for the Jewish Book Council. I keep getting raised eyebrows over this for some reason, and all right, maybe I am about as goy as you get, BUT the people are friendly, the work sounds great, I’ve been promised a plethora of helpful contacts, and I am beyond excited. Plus, a rabbi taught me how to make some might tasty vegan challah, so if all else fails and I’m forced to resort to bribery: culturally-specific baked goods!

I’m subletting a room in Brooklyn, and I’ll be sharing an apartment with two other twenty-something girls. I know very little about them except that 1) their wireless network is named “Valley Girls” AND 2) they seem very nice and put-together from our conversations, so perhaps 1) is meant to be ironic?

I’m also hoping (perhaps too optimistically considering the job market? We shall see…) to pick up additional part time work for pay somewhere closer to my apartment. So until I start the internship on the 7th, I’ll be dashing around to various small businesses, begging anyone who will listen to hire the overeducated likes of me for minimum wage, hurrah!

I’d like to be more internet-present over the summer, and I imagine I'll be more or less successful with that depending on how much of my mental capacity work and possibly more work end up demanding. I’m not sure, however, what form this presence should take. What are the cool kids doing these days, hmm?
Current Mood: bouncybouncy
Current Music: I Am Not A Robot- Marina and the Diamonds
02 September 2009 @ 09:45 pm
I’ve been done doing that Japan thing over there for a month now, so I figured it was about time to wander back over to LJ and do the rough equivalent of barging in, waving my arms wildly, and retreating into the shadows of impending college doom. Great!

Some things that are new and exciting in my world (with pictures, when applicable):

-Family has a house! I have a room! Our fridge has an icemaker!

a teeny tiny peekCollapse )

-Splatter paint is so much fun and so easy, why didn't anyone ever tell me? I loved doing this, despite permanent damage to the garage floor, my skirt, and the previously white kitchen door. Thanks, impossible-to-remove yellow paint!

scooter version 2Collapse )

-Being back in the States means kitchen-access, means baking! I am happy. My family is happy as well, though they file frequent complaints regarding expanding waistlines. Not my concern, I protest.

two somewhat failed pie attempts, super cutesy cup-pies, and some red velvet cupcakes thrown in for good measureCollapse )

- Did yoga for the first time a few days ago with Lori, and the experience was fantastic. My whole body felt like a jell-o jiggler afterward...by which I mean, jell-o-y and jiggly, not potentially full of crushed animal bones, or whatever. I am trying to remember that blissful feeling, rather than my subsequent transformation into a lifeless puddle of SORE the next day, because I’d like to convince myself that nothing will make me happier, fitness-wise, than doing yoga on a regular basis, in hopes that maybe if I believe it enough I will actually do yoga on a regular basis. Yah, we'll see.

- Got my cartilage pierced a couple weeks ago, which is not nearly as big a deal as my mother makes it out to be, I know. Even though it hides behind my hair all the time, I feel significantly more badass whenever I remember its existence. Laugh, whatever, it’s the honest to god truth: badass.

- Um, so, I love Rob tremendous amounts, and this is not new, but sometimes—especially after 7 months of not seeing him—it feels new, and also wonderfully familiar. And you are probably going “what is this, Dani doesn’t ever write about personal things like her relationship here, what’s going on?” (Unless of course you are going “who’s Dani?” which is also valid, considering!) But uh, yeah, you are right. I am stoic and also heartless and don’t you forget it, butheresapicturearentweadorablegyyyyahCollapse )

-Driving up to Skids this Sunday, living in a house with 3 terrific people who will distract me at all hours with videogames and bake-offs. Taking these classes: Senior Seminar in Women’s Studies, Black Feminist Thought, Women Writers, Recent Fiction, a class with a long yet not particularly descriptive title on women in China over the course of history, and a library research independent study for my WS thesis. Switched a class last night, which dropped my required reading list from 40 books to 34, YES. I am all excitement and positive-thinking about it, though, except when it comes to the part with the dying!
Current Mood: bouncybouncy
Current Music: Sugar Mouse- Oh, Atoms
15 March 2009 @ 03:02 pm
Playing with Sculpey + Pushing Daisies

I made these a couple weeks ago and never got around to posting anything about them. They were a fun experiment...though I wish I'd gotten around to doing all the main characters. I started on a Chuck, too, but she is very bald.

Why I gave Olive enormous porn star ta-tas I am not altogether sure. It seemed like a good idea at the time!
Current Mood: busybusy
14 March 2009 @ 10:59 pm
Happy Pi Day!

Such a lovely holiday. The celebration at my house involved coconut cream...

...from a particularly special coconut.

In this case "groovy" meant "partially moldy," but we worked around that.
Current Mood: bouncybouncy
12 March 2009 @ 01:06 am
Blog for Japan is (mostly) set up!

10 March 2009 @ 01:59 am
Now that I'm back from West Virginia, there is about one thing I should be doing and it starts with a "p" and rhymes with "lacking," but hey, there's always tomorrow, until, of course, there's not! Rather than looking dolefully at the contents of my room and wishing they'd put themselves into suitcases and boxes, I've been baking. One might say doughfully.

Then again, one might not, because she'd be A TERRIBLE PERSON.

Too bad, too late!

For once I made something that's not likely to lead to diabetes. Miraculous. :O

Oh bagels, my true carbohydrate love. The best part is boiling them. They bounce around like inner tubes on a crazy waterpark ride. Wheeee.
Current Mood: cheerfulcheerful
Current Music: Live Alone- Franzzzz
04 March 2009 @ 12:29 am
This was amazing: http://www.ens-newswire.com/ens/mar2009/2009-03-02-03.asp

And a bit more critically: http://www.time.com/time/health/article/0,8599,1882700,00.html

Such a good weekend!
Current Mood: impressedinvigorated
27 February 2009 @ 11:19 am
Armed with enough vegan snickerdoodles to feed +40 Skidmore activists...

Current Mood: excitedexcited