How to make life better

I’m here to serve the public, or the 4 people that read this.  I like to surround myself with excellent things, and this means excellent by my broad definition.  I usually stress about everything under the sun (high five to my anxiety issues), so when I find things that are amazing for my life I cling on until I find the next best thing.  If you want a better life and I like to pretend I’m a doctor…I’ll show you what rules:

Life hack for the WIN-o (see what I did there?  #winning)

I read more Buzzfeed than assigned readings for grad school, so I know a lot.  Buzzfeed taught me that if I put cheap wine in the blender for 30 seconds it won’t taste like cheap mistakes.  It’s amazing!  Me and my BAE Sutter Home will always be my budget Sutter Homie.

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Hangover?  aka “the next day the wine rejects my body and I want to die”

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When the wine “wins” me I need help. We don’t need to go into why I drank 4 bottles of wine in my room.  I’m sure I had a great rationale as I popped open each bottle.  But since I’m not a young buck anymore, I pay the price the next day.  I have found my cocktail (meant to) for a remedy.  Alka-Seltzer and a Vitamin B-12 right when I wake up will help: headache, nauseas, body aches, etc. Unfortunately this won’t take back unfortunate drunk texts. If you can throw in a hot soup type food (e.g. Pho), even better.  If I leave my house I’ll take an extra packet of Alka-Seltzer and will give no fucks in preparing a glass of sizzle water in public.

Pillows with purpose

COMFORT REVOLUTION HYDRALUXE GEL PILLOW

I recently purchased a new bed, a real brand new bed like a grown up.  I have made every effort to really make my sleeping experience just that…an experience.  I love comfort, bedding, blankets and PILLOWS!  I splurged and bought 2 Comfort Revolution Hydraluxe Gel Memory Foam Bed Pillows.  Say what?!?!  They basically are foam cooling pillows.  They keep you nice and cool and form to your gross sleep face!  This is a plus for hangovers or hot nights.  Best purchase ever.

Get in that App

Square Cash

square_cash_app This App saves lives!  You can send/receive money for free via email or text that goes straight to your debit card.  This comes in so handy when you’re trying to split checks or if you centralize a big purchase (e.g. a trip).  Handy and easy! More info CLICK HERE

Make your face un-ugly

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1)  MAC Prep+Prime: Skin Refined Zone Treatment Soin

I don’t know what soin means, but a pretty man at the MAC counter told me this product was Uh-mazing.  So I tried it.  It basically preps your face before makeup.  It calms that T-zone down so you won’t be shining bright like a diamond all up on your forehead.  It’s great and little goes a long way!

2) MAC Mineralize Skinfinish in Soft & Gentle

Now this shine is the appropriate kind.  This skin finish is very multipurpose.  It gives off a sun kissed glow. Not a pregnancy glow! I use it on my eyes, my cheeks, and sometimes lips.  It’s a perfect shimmery gold that doesn’t scream 12 year old glitter.

3) Benefit’s Bronzer in Hoola

Hands down my favorite bronzer.  It’s matte, not too dark and chalky, and to the point.  It’s great for everyday use to look alive and that you go out into the sun. But you’re a liar, it’s makeup.

YouTube video to share

Again, Buzzfeed keeps me up at night with their million videos

Movies

Fruitvale Station

I watched this a little while back and it was beyond epic.  I have never been so captivated by a movie.  This movie left me rattled, true story and told so well. Fruitvale-Station-2013

Silver Linings Playbook

This goes into my favorite romantic category: unconventional and full of crazy.  I love Bradley Cooper in this movie…I know JLaw got all the love for this, but he did amazing. silverlinings

Music

Ty Dolla $ign’s Sign Language

Ty_Dolla_ign_Sign_Language-front-largeThis new mixtape has been in my ears for a couple weeks now. I love the entire thing. Ty Dolla $ign looks like he is in a permanent weed coma, but his voice is lovely. It’s like ratchet romance? Is that a thing? Sure. Also, I had a dream that I was in a car with him and I couldn’t see him because of all the weed smoke and I got scared we were going to wreck. But the music tho…thumbs up.

Here is a song with him and T.I.  They are informing their lover that they cannot spend the night, but they promise they won’t rush on the lovemaking.

I’m an INFJ-Deal with it

Maribel shared her ENTP-ness, so I thought I’d do the same and give you my personal prison that is an INFJ… A brief description:

I –tend to be quiet and reserved. They generally prefer interacting with a few close friends rather than a wide circle of acquaintances, and they expend energy in social situations. N – tend to be more abstract than concrete.

F – tend to value personal considerations above objective criteria.

J – tend to plan their activities and make decisions early. They derive a sense of control through predictability. tumblr_n0erlfUtG41qdodqbo1_500

The good stuff:

Creative

Insightful

Inspiring and Convincing

Decisive

Determined and Passionate

Altruistic

The stuff that could drive you insane:

Sensitive

Extremely Private

Perfectionistic

Always Need to Have a Cause

Can Burn Out Easily

Me at a social gathering:

When plans are canceled:

When I make a mistake and others noticed…my internal self:

My verbal process:

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If I had a kid, I’d share the news like this:

So between being an INFJ and a Scorpio I could be perceived from the outside world as a weird quiet awkward bitch?  If that makes sense…My life, it’s adorable.

The Power of the Bestie

People throw around the word “best friend” left and right, but what exactly defines a “ride or die homie”?   I know what it means for me.  Now that I’m getting older (there is proof of this because I recently purchased an under eye cream), I now understand the basic elements that make a great friend.  I’ve been in plenty of the classic type of friendships: the frenemies, the one-sided friendships, the “let’s hangout” but never do friends, the friend that will drop you the minute “man pleasure” is on the table.  So tons…

To the late night chats!  To the drunken messy nights! To the silence that is not awkward!  To the no judgement eating sessions! To call them out on their shit!  To telling them how they really look in that outfit…it’s all cuz we’re homies.

Me and my lady friend (the co-founder of The BBB) have gone through a lot, we don’t like to label anything but we’ve declared our bestie love…Even more so cuz I left the state and broke up our shared duplex family.  But proximity isn’t the only thing needed to be friends.

I have taken 4 famous BFFs to really articulate what it means to be a best friend…

1. Cory Mathews and Shawn Hunter (Boy Meets World)

These two have the classic element of “balance”.  Cory was a super anxious “good guy”, whereas Shawn was the kinda orphan “bad boy.”  He wore a flannel around the waist like a juvenile boss.  The best part of their friendship for me was that Cory always was family to Shawn.  Shawn later had hottie Matthew Lawrence, but still Cory and Shawn were hermanos.

2. Illana and Abby (Broad City)

I’m obsessed with this show.  If you know what’s good for you, you’ll find all the episodes and devour them.  Illana and Abby give a refreshing look at female friendships for folks in their 20’s.  Illana is a bit of the crazy impulsive one, whereas Abby is the more practical “responsible” one.  All in all they have each others back and really champion one another.  I think a hazardous thing in “friendships” is competitiveness.  Why is it so difficult to support one another??

3. Daria and Jane

What I love about this duo is their “keeping it real” delivery coated in large amounts of sarcasm.  This is the only language I’m really fluent in, not so much English and even less Spanish.  I feel that together their power only increases, I feel as though this is the same feeling folks get when Marb$ and I are in the same place at the same time.  Our power together delivers tons of bitch face and sassy comments when you say something stupid.

4. Liz Parker and Maria DeLuca (Roswell)

In the “courting” years, Marb$ and I discovered that we were the same 8th grade dorks that were obsessed with Roswell.  I should have known from that moment we were gonna be hetero life partners.  When I was a middle schooler, Liz and Maria were not only the epitome of besties, but they were fashion icons for the time (1999-ish)!  I want to rock a choker!!  But I’ll look like I’m dying. The element of their relationship I always loved was their need to always spill secrets to one another.  I mean they held the epic secret of ALIENS.  If you have a secret…isn’t it fun to tell your bestie? Especially boy drama.

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What’s your DREAM?!

The older I get, the more I realize how much my “things I want” have changed.  When a person is younger you have these wide-eyed larger than life ideas that you think are so amazing and so attainable.

I thought I’d take a look at my WANTS as a 28 year old, as opposed to 18-ish

Career

18: I’m gonna have one by 23 and be making BANK!  Not sure what it is yet, but I’m gonna be a woman about town with such fucking class.  Drinking mojitos and shit.  Buyin what I want!

28: I’m going to school to be a Marriage and Family Therapist, a draining but solid career.  But right now I’m a grown adult-baby hybrid being supported by even more shitty loans…So career is “in progress.”

Me speaking to life:

Vacation style

18: Let’s rent a beach house and fill it with a billion people I semi-know and par-tee!  I’ve seen a lot of movies so this works out great!

28: Anywhere I can lounge by some sun and have some drinks in silence.  It’s gotta be cheap and preferably with one or 2 other people.  I need peace. Maybe an ice mask?!  I heard Palm Springs has a great senior citizen scene…

Romantic situation

18: A guy who is sensitive, but not too much of a push over.  A total artist but doesn’t even know it.  He is broody and complicated.  He reads but plays the guitar.  He goes to the gym but isn’t a gym rat.  He loves his mom.  He is 6’3″.  He has dark hair.  He is born between the months of August and December.  He can speak 3 languages, etc. Or just Pacey Witter.

28: All you need to have is a job that provides some sort of pay stub, a car, your own place, and a pulse.  And don’t be a liar.

A Friday night

18: A concert where I stand up the entire time, all for the love of music.  Surrounded by tons of people who love the same artists I do.  This is so CITY.

28: Alone in my room with Netflix, a burrito, and an entire family size wine…things are about to get scandalous and real.

 

My Favorites Are Important

I always seem to go through waves of things I’m obsessed with.  I literally devour things for a period of time and then I don’t care and move onto the next thing.  But because I want to influence the world’s hot or not lists, I want to share my current obsessions.

TV

I don’t have a television, therefore when I geek out on current TV programs, it’s all done via streaming Googled links.

“Looking”

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Ads for this new HBO show are all over San Francisco, especially giant posters right off the Castro MUNI station (well done marketing folks), therefore I was curious.  It’s about a group of friends living in San Francisco.  The entire first episode is on YouTube (HERE if you care to watch). This show has been described as a show about “gay guys living in San Francisco,” but it’s so much more than that.  I feel it has such a realistic approach of life and dialogue that is universal to all types of folks.  Also, they film this show in San Francisco, and it carries such a great backdrop. And the music! I love!

Netflix

“Morgan Murphy: Irish Goodbye”

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This stand-up special by Morgan Murphy is quite funny for those who enjoy such dry sense of humor, which is basically my way of life.  She has a great bit where she talks about music festivals, I feel that same way…

She’s from Oregon, so that’s cool.

Music

White girl stuff

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As of late I think I’ve jumped on some weird moody white girl kick, and I’m ok with that. When I say this, I mean I’ve been listening to a cocktail of Lana Del Rey and Lorde.  Their music sounds so cinematic, like it needs to be the background to epic movie montages. I was embarrassed to like Lorde because she’s legally still a child I think.  But Pandora kept shoving her in my stations, so I caved.  I enjoy it…

I had a pretty epic “self” moment where Lana Del Rey’s “Young & Beautiful” brought me to tears.  Talk about being an unstable bitch.  I had those kind of weird tears that fall into your ears because I was in my bed being so emo.  I never really listened to her music, and just judged her of course for being some rich white girl.  But that song alone sold me.  Whatever.

Cry with me…

YouTube

Superfruit

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I subscribe to a bunch of channels, but recently discovered the best duo in YouTube history. I love me some bestie love and comedy, and Superfruit has so much of that going on.  Scott and Mitch are part of an a cappella group called  Pentatonix, which won a show and all that stuff.  But this YouTube channel is dedicated to whatever topics they want, which always includes their weekly obsessions…which basically inspired this post.  Watch them!

 

So Delicious Coconut Milk Ice Cream

(tons of flavors…I likes to fuck with German Chocolate or Chocolate Peanut Butter)

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I go through waves of ice cream cravings.  And since society tells women to feel bad about eating, I thought heyyy I’ll try this kind of hippy ice cream I found at Whole Foods.  (Disclaimer: I only go to Whole Foods because I’m lazy and it’s up the street from whereI live). But shut the fuck up, this is the best ice cream I’ve ever had. Sorry DQ soft serve, you’re dumped for this. Because it has things on it like “gluten free” and “dairy free” therefore my mind thinks that I’m basically taking vitamins and can eat an entire pint in one sitting while watching Couples Therapy (this happened last night).

Diet Coke

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I have no idea why I like Diet Coke.  I understand there are no calories, but super science chemicals that I take in will kill me.  I have never liked Diet Coke, but when I moved to SF I started drinking it out of nowhere. There is something about drinking a cold diet coke that just satisfies my life at the moment.  True story: I drank a can of diet coke hungover in the shower like a trashy bitch.

Mrs. Renfro’s Jalapeño Green Salsa

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Have you ever wanted to taste fire?  This is second best.  This salsa had me by my phantom balls.  But so delicious! I add a little to spruce up my homemade nachos (just melted cheese on chips), bomb!  Hot as fuck, but I approve.  All meals should end in tears anyway.

“What can I get you?”

One of my favorite things to do is sit at a bar for hours at a time and just drink and chat.  I’m not down with “bar hopping” or doing any sort of “crawl.” I love the randomness that life brings without me moving.

Bar interactions are everywhere from charming to annoying as hell.  If you are a white guy telling me how you were with a Puerto Rican girl once and how you know “Latin Women”, I will roll my eyes so hard I’ll lose my sight for a few minutes. (Based on a true story).

As I transplanted from Portland to San Francisco, I noticed a very specific kind of bartender when interacting with brown ladies in Portland. Portland is growing into a hipster hub. I just spent the holiday back home and frequented too many drinking establishments and did some unofficial research.  Therefore I drank for the blog. You’re welcome.

These bartenders are your average “white guy” but with access to the latest “I don’t care” fashions.  How can hipster dudes be so anti anything when they all look like Goodwill’s version of Justin Timberlake’s hair with a full beard?  Throw in a mini-beanie that rivals a yamaka and trunk full of American Spirits, and you’re so at the next MGMT concert.

According to Urban Dictionary, which is where I get all my knowledge (and grad school I guess), it says this about hipsters:

Hipsters reject the culturally-ignorant attitudes of mainstream consumers, and are often be seen wearing vintage and thrift store inspired fashions, tight-fitting jeans, old-school sneakers, and sometimes thick rimmed glasses.

When you’re in an establishment of mostly white folks, you’ll stick out. I stick out, which is great when I’m trying to get a drink.  I swear the bartenders come up quicker because I look all “ethnic.”  They seem confused that I know the words to a song by Architecture in Helsinki but I speak secret Spanish to talk about others to my homegirl. I feel the bartenders get their “cultured” beanies on and try to act all modern and worldly.  Dude, I don’t care.  But a free drink maybe? Cuz my parents crossed 2 borders, sooooo…

Here are some great exchanges I’ve had with hipster bartenders:

Bartender: So where are you from (most famous question of my life)
Me: I’m from Oregon, but my parents are from El Salvador
Bartender: Oh nice!  I love going to Nicaragua to surf, it’s amazing.
*Because that’s the same thing, not 2 different countries or anything*

Bartender: What can I get you?
Me: Can I get a Tecate please?
Bartender: *looks confused* he was taken aback my correct pronunciation
Me: (repeat) Tecate please?
Bartender: Oh ya, TECATE (I think he busted his insides by trying to pronounce it with an accent).  Right on!
*Truth talk, he said right on*

Bartender: Would you like another drink?
Me: Sure, same thing please
Bartender: Whiskey soda with lemon?
Me: Yup
Bartender: Oh that’s a cool bracelet (*I have a bracelet full of Salvadoran flags that I got from El Salvador last year*)
Me: Oh ya, thanks
Bartender: Oh is that Honduras?
Me: No it’s El Salvador
Bartender: Awesome! My best friend is half Guatemalan
Me: That’s nice

These are just a few examples of the sea of interactions I’ve had being “othered” hardcore. But I don’t sweat it too much, I like people trying for my approval and if I can get a free guilt drink in the process…my bank account ain’t mad.

Master That!

I bitched for so long that I wanted to leave Portland and start something fresh and new.  Since I didn’t win the lottery, nor did I meet a sugar (suga?  I can’t pull that off) daddy…I had to settle for grad school.  In a very UNLIKE me fashion, I only applied to one school.  I believe in back-up plans and safety because I need a bit of security when it comes to large life decisions.  I felt so passionately about one particular program that I couldn’t compromise myself any longer in life, therefore there went all my eggs in one basket.  So when I received my acceptance info, I had instant “shock tears” and immediately wanted to throw up, very much “me” and extremely adorable.

I’m outta here PORTLAND!

Now I am two months into a new city and graduate school.  I’m at about the mid-point of my first semester and now I can really assess my time thus far.  I only have my undergrad experience to pull from but since my memory is foggy at best, I don’t remember some parts of how to “do” school and the life that goes with it.  I remember some parallels here and there, but I’m pretty sure I received my undgrad degree by accident.  Tons of coffee fueled bullshitting episodes that turned into papers or presentations.  Since grad school is a brand new situation, I was nervous to actually study and do work.  Gotta change things up to be my age and take this seriously!  Shit got real son.

Since I love to compare and contrast, I’ve organized some categories of school-life stuff.  What did this look like in Portland during undergrad time, as compared to grad time in San Francisco (sidebar: my mom likes to insert “Rice-A-Roni the San Francisco Treat” any chance she can when we chat on the phone).

STUDY SESSIONS

Undergraduate: I procrastinated most of the time, skipped class to do work for another class, and finally my “go to” system would be to drink a bucket of coffee and stay up all night to write a paper due the next day which I had 5 weeks to do.

Graduate: The amount of reading that is assigned is CRAZY.  It’s like reading the bible every week.  And since I’m choosing to be here in order to become a better human, I can’t fuck around, I’m old and I need to care.  So I outline my readings and assignments each week and schedule out reading/work times throughout the week so I’m not trying to cram everything the morning before class.

CLASS PARTICIPATION

Undergraduate: I think most of the time I hid in corners and never really spoke. I’ve always been super introverted so it was tough to talk a lot, but also I was always lost in a sea of people anyway.  Also, skipping class was way easier back in the day.  I’d go eat nachos instead.

Graduate: Since I’m in a cohort model of a program, professors know my name, I can’t hide.  It still is difficult for me to talk in front of people, but since I HAVE TO SHOW UP AND SPEAK in order to get points, I pepper in my amazing knowledge here and there.  I don’t want to over talk because those people are annoying, but I don’t want to be the unabomber kid in the corner.

THE FOOD

Undergraduate: I never went to the grocery store.  I have no idea how I kept myself alive.  I think Subway was my “kitchen.”  I ate a lot of random stuff around campus or at my sister’s house.  I did the classic Ramen, but then when I could HEAR my heartbeat from all that salt…I had to take a break.

Graduate: I made a conscious decision to change my lifestyle in a new city and also to keep my money in check because this city is EXPENSIVE…EXPENSIVE BUT FUN.  I try and go grocery shopping every week and buy essentials.  I’ve used pots and pans!  I’ve LOOKED UP recipes to feed myself.  Who am I?!  I chose to buy KALE.  WHAT?!?!  I do still eat Ramen here and there.  But did you know you can make this healthy-ish?!?!  Add lemon, cilantro, scallions, and some hot sauce—BOMB!

GETTING AROUND

Undergraduate: My time with my Ford Escort.  What a feisty little thing.  She was constantly pregnant with fast food wrappers.  I was a crazy lazy child and drove everywhere.  Plus, Portland rain makes no one want to stroll.

Graduate: My feet and public transportation everywhere I go!  My first week here I’m surprised I didn’t collapse.  The walking life is REAL.  And not only that, walking in this city can be like you’re scaling walls.  So my sweat mustache has been part of my “look” here.  So thank goodness it’s so progressive here.

LET’S PARTY!

Undergraduate: Drinking was part of the college experience!  I could drink Thursday through Sunday, drinking whatever was in front of my face. Let’s go to DA CLUB and even wear HEELS!   Hangovers were not that gnarly, I could still keep it going.  Then I could get back to business and do whatever work I needed to for school.

Graduate: Grabbing a drink post-class is a great stress reliever!   A few drinks and chatting about classes and life…SITTING DOWN.  Since I am still who I am, I love me a good binge session.  A nice bar, that’s my only criteria.  But I cannot go out on the weekends and do consecutive days of drinking.  I’ve had the worst hangovers while being here.  I blame this on age.  It hurts, I can’t hang and be a responsible student.  An entire day spent in bed hanging onto my pillow pet and drinking pedialyte is not cool for being grown.

There it is!  Let’s all pray to RuPaul or whatever you follow in the spiritual sense, and hope I get through this effing program and graduate!