I'm bipolar. I blog about it. I also blog about sex, theology and atheology, funny shit and sad shit, books, music, feminism, and love. Mostly love.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

AHHHHHH! Dejected and Pathetic

I am frustrated. And there's no one to yell at because no ONE has done anything wrong. And I honestly know nothing is going poorly enough to warrant too much craziness. So I thought this was a decent place to vent.

  1. I just replaced the rubbers on my bike. Now the chain is broken. That bike ride I've been looking forward to all week was less than short-lived.
  2. Ian is straight up picking on Grandma. He's called her at 5am and 3:30am now. He's called her asking for my DVDs (thanks, bro), because he "has a tv now" (maybe, maybe not, since he can barely afford toilet paper). He got jumped...? Which is why he called me then Grandma but never Mom or Jim. *Why does he think I'm the weakest link!?* I'm too nice. Psht. I've ignored his last three calls.
  3. I'm leaving tomorrow. And I'm crazy excited to see my friends again, get back to work, and fall in love with a new set of campers. But I'm going to miss my family. I don't even really want to see them when I'm there. I just hate transitions. I hate saying goodbye, which is why I get all bitchy and mean before I leave; because I am stressed and sad. But then I feel even sadder when I try to go to sleep that night remembering how mean I was. I'm already feeling anxious about it. I think that's my aversion to packing. I have a hard time packing, unless I'm going somewhere with someone. I just put it off, because I don't like to think about leaving. It's really hard on me.
Okay. The list made it a little better actually. That and Wagon Wheel. I cried a little. I'll admit. But all will be well. I think spending time with my family tonight will make it a little easier. But then I'm off to party and off to work. I kind of need a big hug right now.
This is a picture of me right now feeling dejected and pathetic.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Music of the Moment

I just made two playlists. The first is gospel and the second is titled Windows Down, which was designed for nice, long, summer road trips.

  1. I'll Fly Away--Alison Krauss
  2. What Wondrous Love is This--Blue Highway
  3. Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing--Fiddlesticks
  4. Me and God--Avett Brothers
  5. Po Lazarus--James Carter and the Prisoners
  6. I Am Weary (Let Me Rest)-Cox Family
  7. Will the Circle Be Unbroken--Mavis Staples
  8. Long Time Traveler--The Wailing Jennys
  9. Babylon--Don McLean live
  10. Down to the River to Pray--Alison Krauss
Windows Down:
  1. Black-Eyed Susan--Town Mountain
  2. Picture Show--John Prine
  3. Blister in the Sun--Violent Femmes
  4. Wagon Wheel--Old Crow Medicine Show
  5. Half Moon Rising--Yonder Mountain String Band
  6. Rocky Top--Osbourne Brothers
  7. Home--Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeroes
  8. You Are My Sunshine--Norman Blake
  9. Old Plank Road--Guy's All-Star Shoe Band
  10. Union Maid--Old Crow Medicine Show
  11. Distraction #74--Avett Brothers
  12. Let it Rock--Catham County Line
  13. Graceland--Paul Simon
  14. How Sweet it is (To Be Loved by You)--James Taylor
  15. Old Blue--The Byrds
  16. Dawg's Rag--David Grisman Quintet
  17. Sweet Potato Pie--Ray Charles & James Taylor
  18. American Pie--Don McLean
Go purchase (or illegally obtain) these keepers. The order was considered carefully, also. I think you guys might like them, even if folk isn't your thing. These are kind of classics, or may be someday. Let me know how you feel about them. :)


The hills meet leftist city girls

Tuesday, July 10, 2012



I obviously can't maintain my "Love a Day" while I'm at camp as I'm completely without Internet. But I can promise to post one when it's available to me. So here goes: I love life exactly as it is. There are things I want to change, and so I do it. There are things beyond my power, and I struggle to accept that. But if I were to allow everything that makes me sad hold my attention in ways that are unproductive, then I have lost purpose. I will choose ways to make my life and the lives around me better. That is my definition of purpose, I think. And so I choose to find things that used to make me nervous, funny. There is certainly more humor in life than we give it credit for.

Knocked-over orange barrels can make you nervous, or they can make you giggle. Soaking yourself by accident with your garden hose can piss you off, or give you an excuse to smile. We always say, "you'll look back on that and laugh." And it's true. Those silly, embarrassing, and near-mishaps will be funny in a few days, weeks, months... years? We can laugh at them. But... but... why wait? What the hell people?! Imagine how much grief you'd save yourself if you accepted the wisdom you can already acknowledge your future self will posses. This is where this philosophy gets tricky, so Imma break it down.

You do something ridiculous.
You freak out.
You know that you'll find it funny in time.
Looking back on it...
But you choose to leave the laughing to your future self.

But two seconds post any embarrassing moment makes it history. If you know it's going to be funny to a wiser you, then you already posses the wisdom necessary to laugh it off. Right? It's so easy to panic when your car starts to sound its own panic alarm, but it's a hell of a lot easier to laugh at it. Laugh louder than that horn! Go for it! Because you cannot let a damned car horn ruin your vacation! You just can't. Enough crap in this world will bring you down. You don't need to sweat the small stuff. I know I'm not the first person to say that. But it's more than brushing silly things off your shoulder. It's about allowing yourself to fall in love with it.

Someone calls you a mean name. What's the real meaning of that name? Our choice of curse words is absolutely hysterical. Someone calls you fat? Why? Why did they feel the need to waste their breath telling you something you already know (and have accepted as the beautiful you, yeah?)?  Shoot. They got more mess in their brain than you do. Someone calls you a bitch? Female dog. Don't tell me that isn't funny. And who doesn't love dogs? When someone says it, picture yourself as a schnauzer or yorkiepoo. Those are precious. I can say that because I own those two. When I was little, my mom told me I could be anything when I grew up. Before I'd considered the unlikelihood of my dreams, I wanted to be a dog when I grew up (specifically with a good home and fur that's easy to brush). I wanted to be a bitch when I grew up.

That last paragraph got kind of out of hand. but I think my point is clear. There are things that are out of our control. There are things that will break your heart. But an orange barrel shouldn't be one of those things. All of you. Right now. Take a deep breath, and when you let it out, just laugh your ass off. Laugh so hard you start to cry. Start to think of everything that's ever made you laugh hard enough to pee on your camp cabin floor. READYSETGO!

Monday, July 9, 2012

We lead exciting lives... I think.

So. On Saturday after the campers left, my parents and grandma picked me up. After some time in Nashville, IN, we made our way back to Blueberry Cottage, the legitimate name of the cabin they'd rented out. It was cute enough, but after three weeks sleeping on a cot or on the ground, I was given one of the four couches. Somehow, it was still better though, so I wasn't even ready to start complaining. I also hadn’t slept in air conditioning for a while, and there was some comfort in requesting blankets. Mom spent a lot of time talking about harvesting basil. I spent a lot of time talking about camp; something I've learned will fall on deaf ears. I think we both tuned each other out. No one at home understands Gollywop language and Boogaloo. And I know nothing about gardening. (I need to go water the plants, now that I think about it. Give me a minute…)
Speaking about gardening and growth and such… I took care of a spider for Mom! That’s me, Official badass of the Bush-Markle-Thompson-Webster-Dunahee-Collings family. Need a spider taken care of? Call me and I’ll eat it. I’d drive to Centralia just to eat a spider. My heart swells with pride at the sight of disgusted looks. I’ll eat that spider, but I won’t eat a hamburger. I just realized that. Whatever.
When we settled into Blueberry Cottage, we snuggled into a few of the couches. Jim and Grandma were watching Road House. Jim likes boy movies, and Grandma gets all hot and bothered ‘bout Patrick Swayze. And Mom wouldn’t stop bitching about it. We shot her some looks, because she always gets to watch what she wants. Jim deserves Road House after all the episodes of Project Runway he’s sat through. But Mom kept with the resentful comments like, “I just don’t like all of the senseless violence,” and “this is so predictable… I could write this shit.” That’s her famous line. And I took a long-avoided shower just to escape the nonsense.
When we were all presentable, we tripped our way out the door.  We were all geared up to go to Indianapolis to the Cannoli Queen. Oh, my god it was so good. I suggest you go, especially when you’re having a bad day, because she’s super adorable and hugs your heart with her smile. But just as I got my new ear buds in and started to listen to some Chris Bathgate, there was a whole bunch of honking. Apparently, the car alarm system had been tipped off. It thought we were trying to steal it! I thought the whole thing was hysterical, because when you’re a camp counselor, you learn to laugh at disasters—it makes life a lot nicer thing to live through. And it also kind of reminded me about that scene in Little Miss Sunshine when their car horn keeps going off… that’s my favorite part in the whole movie! It’s such an Irving-esque way to remind you how desperate and ridiculous the whole situation is. But Mom and Grandma started yelling and Jim started shaking his head.
And Grandma was yelling all kinds of panicked orders, and Mom was yelling at her to stop freaking the fuck out… neither got their way. Grandma wanted to call everyone who had ever touched a car in their life, and Mom wanted Grandma to change a major part of her personality… at the ripe age of 72. The two of them were cat fighting. I actually know what that means… because I have cats and they fight. So I’m kind of an expert. And it looked just like that. Mom was saying intentionally hurtful things, and Grandma was taking anxious to a whole new level of irrational. I thought I was going to crawl out of my skin. At least cat fights end quickly. The alarm stopped sounding as we drove, but the blue light by her steering wheel was beating to the time of the music I’d turned up only loud enough to drown out their screeching and hissing. I wanted to smash that little, taunting bulb. It’s a good thing Jim’s the driver.
Meanwhile, empty clouds teased the city with a drop or so. We still have no creek, by the way. L The sound of thunder makes me bitter now. I hear it night after night, and I still live in a creek-free reality. I would growl back at the thunder if I didn’t think the thunder was a honey badger.
I did come out of Nashville with goodies on a way less depressing note! I bought myself some art and earrings from a cute little store called The Purple Fig. And I received Philosophy Body Wash that smells like PINK ICED ANIMAL COOKIES! You wonder, hm? How does this work? And I suggest you take my word for it, because it’s beyond your comprehension. I also got some eye-shadows for every day of the freaking week. Like, they’re titled different days, and the best part is the cute little descriptions that match each color. And then the box they came in. That was pretty cute too. I don’t want to get rid of it. Pencil case perhaps? AND me Mama and Papa got me ear buds with OWLS on them. Try to top the cuteness of that. Just try.
Then I came home and got in a bunch of fights with my parents and cried a bunch. But not before (actually, that’s a figure of speech. We fought before and after) I got to enjoy their new little yummy creation involving home-made pesto, local cheese, and artisan bread. Okay. It has a name. It’s bruschetta. But I’m going to pretend my parents invented it, because somehow that makes it taste better. It tastes like genius.
And because we have really exciting lives, we noted that Baby Kitty had been out for a while and that was worrisome. We wondered if she ate mice out there. We acknowledged that Maybeline is not nearly as glamorous without the fur they shaved off her due to fleas. Grandma brought up a bunch of depressing subjects that we groaned at. “Let’s talk about Darren…” actually Grandma… let’s not. We chatted more about things we found interesting despite the fact the rest of the table didn’t. We at 1111 Vine just like to talk, I think.
Today, Kelsie and I took pictures of ourselves on my webcam. They’re super cute. You can look at them here. Then she left. Then I got a cherry-coke Icee from Burger King with Kyle. We usually go to McDonald’s with Jacob to make fun of Fox News, but somehow without Jacob, it’s just depressing. He’s way better at witty than I am, and I can’t just watch Fox News without getting sick to my stomach. Making light of it is the only way to handle the piles of stupid they feed their viewers. I couldn’t handle that, so I opted for BK.
This post is getting really boring. I’m gonna stop now. I’m sorry if you fell asleep and now you have a bunch of Js and Qs on the Word Document you accidentally opened when your head hit the keyboard. Sorry. But if that didn’t happen… actually I’m still sorry.

Top 50: You know you're a Waycross counselor when...

year 2
  1. you know there's more than one bible.
  2. you have a go-to boogaloo.
  3. you've done something that could make other people vomit.
  4. you know what a Camp Kid is.
  5. you know playing guitar is worthy of a pay raise.
  6. you seriously wonder if life guarding is worth the pay raise.
  7. at the end of meals you feel compelled to put all the silverware in cups.
  8. someone wants to make an announcement and you want to sing a song about it.
  9. air conditioning is too cold.
  10. you sing the mail song on the way to the mailbox.
  11. Oreos are directly associated to a certain chaplain.
  12. you have eaten a bug or kissed a toad.
  13. you own a watch.
  14. you know all too well what Barking Spiders are.
  15. "Go to bed," is way more than a request: it's a plea of desperation.
  16. you are equally terrified of and thankful for cinnamon roll hugs.
  17. Waycross eggs are very fine eggs, but Springfield eggs are better.
  18. Michael Oh Michael never gets old.
  19. makeup and hair are a waste of time.
  20. you accept that showers are a privilege not a right.
  21. you groan if you hear "OOOOOOHHHH!" before a meal.
  22. the thought of The Austrian makes you tired.
  23. you know the difference between a creek hike and a rock hike of 2012.
  24. when someone says "that's my favorite song," and a little voice in your head says, "it's my favorite song TOO someone!"
  25. Rise and Shine makes you want to go back to bed.
  26. coffee is a legal addictive stimulant invented solely for our job.
  27. burn bans actually affect you.
  28. you've made tea from sassafras roots.
  29. camouflage is more than a pattern.
  30. serenades aren't just singing; they're a spiritual experience.
  31. "say what?" "ohhhh."
  32. the ability to french braid is more than a talent.
  33. having half a beard makes you cool.
  34. you can take someone seriously at staff meetings with a uni-brow and creeper mustache drawn on their face.
  35. if you have been identified as a character both from the Harry Potter series and from Wet Hot American Summer.
  36. donk.
  37. you've witnessed an hour long debate over fanny packs.
  38. you can describe your day as a sandwich with all the seriousness of an important staff meeting.
  39. you can actually recite the contemporary Lord's Prayer.
  40. you know the significance of Page 18.
  41. seat check means nothing.
  42. you are proud of bruises.
  43. you put up the Birdman Block when someone says your name.
  44. you know better than to leave your stomach or thighs unprotected.
  45. you know alternate lyrics to Both Sides Now.
  46. you have seen a Gollywop.
  47. you accept that getting drenched is never a choice; it's a reality.
  48. you throw up your spoons if someone is in danger of falling.
  49. you laugh maliciously at the words Romans and Christians.
  50. camp is on your mind all year.
war and peace

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Man is made of dreams and bones.

Spirit gnome
And it began. First, with staff training; a well-designed method of the development of chemistry where none should have existed before. The frat-rat and the nerd, the queen bee and the philosophy major.

It began with late nights talking to Sara about finding ourselves, liking ourselves, and overcoming the palpable fear that no one will like the person we find ourselves to be. We talked about the validity of feelings, regardless of their origin--one we still haven't settled, I think. But something I didn't think about until the conversation had passed was that I know that despite the issues I've had with my dad in the past, and despite the pain I feel when I watch as my brother self-destructs... despite all of that, I think my most impressive heartache has come from overcoming a very real self-hatred. Internal battles tend to leave us far more broken than those things that happen to us.
 It began with unshaven legs and accepting that no idol is perfect--except Wonder Woman. I learned lessons. I learned that going without a shower for a while can make you feel human in a way that a civilized kind of life denies me. No one smells good all the time. Everyone farts (although apparently not everyone has the weird urge to smell them even when they don't want to). Girls are just as nasty as boys. Mud pits are the great equalizer. Not everyone can sing well, but absolutely everyone can sing. There are few places safe enough to discover all of this.
Sun hats and our Sunday Best
 It began with tears I never thought I'd be capable of shedding in public. But it wasn't really public, I suppose. Reflections: A loud, a soft, and if my day were a sandwich… I cried for fear and helplessness--feelings I'm not as fond of expressing. And I earned myself a cinnamon roll hug. I felt so naked in chapel that night. I'd gotten lost that day. I was still recovering. But that day proved to me twice over how much my camp family is willing to do for me. Even if they can't understand the heartaches I have, and I cannot comprehend theirs, I know they will catch me if I fall, and I would do the same for them. Although, I know there are people with whom I can express my feelings about those things that have happened to me, and there are a different group of people with whom I can share those things I have done to myself. I learned that these people, of both ends, felt legitimate fear when I was gone for an hour and fifteen minutes--I didn't know I'd meant that much. I am vital there--as vital as anyone else. But without any one of us, this summer would suffer for it. We are one body.
Staff 2012 minus the brilliant Nathan Stewart
 It began with the sweet reminder that a single location can hold magic and comfort in hammocks, cots, cabins, and hills; in the International Birdman Society, EpiPens, slack-jaw-dance, and belly slaps hard enough to make you vomit a little in your mouth. In the sound of a cabin-mate's snores and the smell of Waycross cookies, I find comfort I have yet to recreate elsewhere.
Early Arrivals
My first week was a nice one. The ladies in my cabin were wonderful. I laughed a lot. Quotes like "I don't care if I hunger to death, I don't care if I thirst to death, I just care that I have my bunny!" and "I like myself as I am. I don't want to be a tree." still make me snort. And there are moments that tightened my chest and brought tears to my eyes. Confessions of a little girl without a daddy, with whom I couldn't help but relate to, and somehow the sight of Harry Potter books tucked in with teddy bears choked me up. Seven year-olds can teach you a lot about yourself and the world as a greater whole. Experience has taught me much, but age and arrogance has allowed me to forget some of the greater truths in life: that music and story books are significant methods of therapy, that saying what rests on your heart should not deny you any friendships—and if it does, you have chosen poorly, and finally that if you can learn to forgive yourself on a daily basis, then you can learn to forgive others as liberally. Everyone deserves the chance to change themselves.
Canoe Bruise
My second session was with some ten and eleven year-olds with the token 9 and 12 year-old. They really were a great cabin. They made me a birthday gift--a mason jar candle--that I used for reflections with them. I’ll have to post a picture sometime soon. They taught me that bullying exists and that children often lack the experience to see it. I learned that when kids are insecure, they will either make themselves into someone they think people will like, becoming all too comfortable with manipulation, or they will allow themselves to be used. The strongest people legitimately don’t care what people think of them—such a cliché, such a brilliant truth. My cabin took a hold of my heart. A little girl with a life more challenging than I can even begin to understand had the best attitude of any child I've ever met, and a girl who has had a history of bad behavior who "decided to be good," this year... nothing is more meaningful to me. I'm so proud of Waycross. I'm so proud that we can provide an environment where neither socioeconomic status nor history can deny a child the chance to be loved--to make friends.
Too perfect
 My third session was on support, which was dotted with its own miracles. It was defined by late nights talking, laughing, and sighing at those things which we cannot change. It was defined by Dark Angel in the Main House, grazing out of the serving bowls, forgetting the laptop at lunch, leading songs and skits, making mistakes into something amazing. I won't forget being a little proud of Sara for bruising me. I won't forget learning that Chantel has way more to offer than just Mama Bear. I won't forget when James tore off his toenail trying to hide from Natalie... and then ate it to make Sara throw up, (she didn’t by the way). I learned that putting basil in your water makes it better. I learned that Wagon Wheel will never get old. I met people from South Sudan and Brazil. They taught me about walking, they taught me about Gollywop relatives. Oreos, Reese’s, bath house steps, cinnamon roll hugs, little dots of light bobbing ahead of me held by tiny hands belonging to tear-stained faces, Zumba, (not) hoola-hooping, and Mr. Plum in the Rec Hall with the Climbing Rope…
Rainbow Connection
 I'll miss you, Waycross. Thank you to the land on which it rests, thank you to the Gollywops who let us keep it, and thank you to those who have made this year as full of magic as the week I first felt it when I was nine years-old.