Friday, March 30, 2012

Weekend Words

Clouds come in floating into my life,
no longer to carry rain or usher storm,
but to add color to my sunset sky.

Rabindranath Tagore

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Nailed It

A quick thought during my office hour.

Have you ever head of the Keirsey Temperament Sorter? It's a personality test basically. There are four different groups, with two categories in each group. Like so:

E (extroversion) or I (introversion)

S (sensing) or N (intuiting)

T (thinking) or F (feeling)

J (judging) or P (percieving)

So you take the test and find out which category you fall into for each group and what that means for your personality. The website* gave me these examples. An ESTP is an Artisan, with an emphasis in promoting. An ENJF is an Idealist, emphaszing teaching. There's also Guardian, with ISFJ acting as a protector and Rational, with INTP as an architect. Or if you fall equally into both categories, you recieve an X.

I had to take this test because I'm a mentor to a girl taking a residence life class (meaning she's in the application process to be a Resident Assisstant next year) and the students in the class are supposed to try and figure out what type their mentor is just by having a conversation. This is basically what you do as an RA only with a whole hall of 36 people to figure out, instead of just one mentor**

Because I didn't know a dang thing about my type I sat down this morning to take the test.

Guess what I am?

An XNXX. (And just barely an N at that.)

That's right suckas. I fall basically in the middle of everything. Which pretty much confirms my average fears.

Naming this blog? Nailed it. NAILED IT.

Peace out people. I'm going to go be average (read boring) in class now.

** yeah, we take this RA crap very seriously at SUH

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Research Project

This week's adventure:

Undergraduate research project.

The other researchers and I have met every week since the beginning of the semester, trying to plan and get ready for this bad boy. On Monday we finally started the actual research portion.

The project consists of taking waist circumference measurements, body fat percentages, and blood glucose levels.

Each of these tests have a lot of moments that are (to borrow a popular blogging trend) awkward and awesome.*

In order to fully understand the experience, let's pretend you're volunteering and take a virtual tour shall we?


"Hello there! No this isn't the (much more popular/better advertised) fraternity blood drive. This is a research project. Would you like to participate?"

"Great! Go ahead and start over by the curtain, they'll give you some forms and a survey."

Test 1: Waist Circumference.

"Ok! Hi. Will you please find the very top of your hips and place your thumbs on that spot? No. Not there. On your side. No. Never mind. Excuse me while I place my hands on your waist until I find them. If you have a lot of girth it'll take some maneuvering. If you don't, it might still take some time as I enjoy your washboard abs. A rarity. Stop giggling. Great! Now I'm just going to measure this... What's that? You'd like to lift up your shirt for a more accurate measurement? Sure. Yup. Go right ahead. All right! You can move on to the next station."

Test 2: Body Fat Percentage

"Well, to begin, will you please remove your right shoe and sock? You're wearing tights? There's a bathroom around the corner... if you wouldn't mind. Wonderful! Now lay down with your head here and feet there. Spread your arms about 8 inches from your waist, your legs about 12 inches apart. Farther. Farther. (To self, REALLY?) There you go! Just hold still while I attach these electrodes to your (hairy. bony. occasionally smelly. oh gag me.) feet and hands. Perfect, I'm going to run the machine now, just hold still. No, it's not a high enough electrical current to shock you. Courtesy chuckle. Because I've only heard that joke 259 times before. Very clever sir.** You're all done! Put your shoe, and sock, back on and go around the curtain for your next test.

Test 3:

"Hi, come on and sit down! Right or left hand? Yes just a small poke. Very small. Several people say they didn't even feel anything. One boy screamed. No come back! I was kidding. Really. He just did that to scare people. He said it actually felt like a vacation in Bermuda. Clean off your middle OR ring finger with this alcohol wipe. And then let it air dry, don't touch it or blow on it. (Usually said while person is in the middle of blowing.) Oh boy your hands are very cold. I'm just going to rub your finger a little to get your circulation going. We call it milking the finger. So you know, if this nutrition major thing doesn't work out for me I can always be a farmer!*** (Receive blank stare.) I hope this isn't weird for you, because I looooooooove giving hand massages to strangers. I'll try not to make eye contact with you while doing so. Ready? Just a small poke now... There we go! Cue one of three responses;

1. Upon seeing blood bubble up - Wonderful! Oh you are a great bleeder! (Every participant's dream, I'm sure.)

2. Upon seeing blood come out and not bubble but spread all over the finger - Oh. Wow. Ok. Umm that's really weird. What the heck is wrong with you? What do I do with this? (Inspires confidence every time.)

3. Upon seeing such a tiny amount of blood that not even Edward would be turned on - Hmm. Just hold on while I continue to squeeze your finger. And squeeze. And rub. And squeeze. Are you sure you even have blood?

Phew. Now that I have enough, I'm just going to put it into this contraption that mixes it with a solution and I'll deposit it into the test machine. Here's a cotton ball for your wound. Apply pressure. Would you like a band-aid? No they're just plain.**** Now we wait for five minutes while the test runs. Have you finished your survey? You have? Well then, we get to make awkward chit chat while you wait, isn't that lovely? Bonus points if you're my ex-boyfriend. You know, the one that I just kind of stopped talking to. Sooooooo. How have you been since I last saw you? (Three months ago) You miss me? Yeah, me neither. Alrighty then!

Here are your results. It looks like your number falls in the non-diabetic range. Congratulations! Thanks for coming in! Tell your friends!

So yes. Many an awkward moment. But the awesome part is, I really loved it. I loved talking to people, teaching them a little bit about the tests, about nutrition, and even taking the tests. I may be a little bit excited about my future, can you believe it? Very awesome indeed.

*Yes, yes I am stealing a popular blogging phrase in a blatant attempt to boost my numbers.
**Sir. So a different gender than the aforementioned person who took off tights. Thank goodness.
***I never actually made that joke (out loud). Even I have a lame-ness limit.
****Seriously the most frequently asked question. The next day I brought super hero band aids and was the most popular person person. Fetchin' college students.

Sunday, March 18, 2012


To be entirely honest, the thought of BYU paralyzes me sometimes. I've wanted to go for so long.* But even now, when it's no longer an intangible abstract idea, but a plan with mass and weight, I'm scared that it, like so many other plans, will fall through. It's in my grasp, but I can't quite make the fist yet and grab it.

I checked the "I will" box, I signed a contract for a house**. Yet it still feels a little unreal. I'm afraid that it will become one of those Sunday School stories. The ones that go like this, "I had everything planned out, I knew exactly what I was going to do, and then everything changed because something else was in store for me."

In the case that it does happen (I think it will) I'm intimidated by the HUGE-ness of it all. Huge numbers of people, huge talent, huge stereotypes and small minds. I've grown quite comfortable in my small school. The office people don't scare me** - I work there two hours a week. I know every faculty in my major, I'm working on an undergraduate research project with two of them. I know which institute teachers work for me and which do not. I'm in charge of a residence hall which occasionally makes me think, "I RULE THIS SCHOOL FOOLS!"

All of the sudden the idea of leaving my homey little town stops my heart in unthinkable terror. Do you know what an uncomfortable feeling it is to be looked over? I felt that today a little. Getting overshadowed by brighter personalities, more colorful talents, funnier quirks, more interesting ideas, lovelier faces. And this happened in a place where I can get to class in five minutes. Three and a half if it's an early morning math class and I want to sleep in. Not in a massive, overwhelming, oh-my-gosh-it's-like-target-on-black-friday-place.*** What if that happens all the time? I read a blog that summarized it very well, "I came here and couldn't play an instrument. I mean that wasn't all, but it personifies my problem. Everyone seemed to be good at things I wasn't... and I forget I was good at anything at all." (

I like feeling needed and important. SUU gave me that. I know I can find it at BYU. But the thought of starting over again (although this time rooming with friends) can really grab a girl and give her a good shake.

*not brainwashed I swear. This is my decision.
**read tiny apartment with five other girls. dishwasher and closet space optional.
***slight exaggeration. slight.

MOM. I'm FINE. Really. Just experiencing a healthy dose of nervousness. And a touch of sadness to see SUU go. Seriously it's ok. Put down the phone and the psychiatrists number.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Security Bites Back

I have old woman paranoia syndrome.

You didn't know this existed? It does. Google it.*

I blame this - like any good twentieth century child - in part on my mother**

The paranoia goes like this. The website wants me to use a password! I must create something incredibly obscure and only relevant to me! It must have random capitalizations and numbers! If I don't I'll be hacked by this new fangled technology! All 400 dollars left in my savings account will be drained and I'll be ruined! RUINED! RUINED. Ruined. Ruined. ruined. And whatever I do I must NOT write those random passwords down because then some brilliantly clever person who wants to use my secrets (because I have so many and am so very VIP) will find them and use them to wreak havoc. ***

Usually I end up re-setting a lot of passwords and getting permanently locked out of my online bank account. Whatever, I can handle that. But then I got my email about getting into BYU.

I felt so anxious opening the email. Despite the assurances of people I knew, I wasn't guaranteed a spot. I know people scoff at this school but it is, a competitive place. My record is far from perfect and there's plenty of highly qualified people who don't get in, so I was very nervous.

I'd been counting down the days, I knew I was supposed to hear back by the 28th of February. On this particular day (I don't remember the exact date. Shame. I probably should have remembered it, photographed it, and scrapbooked it for future posterity) I must have checked every hour. After eight I finally stopped checking and settled in to wait until I could obsessively check the next day. But I guess BYU doesn't operate at normal office hours. I got a call around nine, from a friend asking if I'd received the email - she just had.

Cue heart attack.

So I tried to log on and read the email.

Shoot, what was my password again?


For that matter... what was my username? (I applied a whole month ago ok? Why would I remember things like that?)


Hmmm maybe I'll just try to change my password. Great, confirmation email sent to my email, I'll just go there and fix it.

Check email... Nothing is there? Why? (Note, I'm still on the phone) Repeat procedure. Laugh. Defend accusatory remarks made by friend. She accused me of being an idiot. She's right.

So I tried to call tech support.

Closed till the morning.


Of course. I laughed some more, mostly to hide the frustrations at myself and the nerves. I planned to get up early and call as soon as tech support opened at seven.

Instead I slept in and rushed to the library to finish a paper before class. Then I rushed to housing office to fill out a form requesting a purchasing card to buy refreshments for a program that night. Then I rushed to wallyworld to buy the items and get the card back in time.

As I drove, my rebellious/stubborn side kicked in. Screw that awaiting email. I couldn't find out right at the moment, so I wasn't going to think about it a second more. I opened the sunroof. I turned up my favorite cd. I stuck my hand out the window and felt for the first time in months the sun warming it. I felt that kind of happy, jumping feeling that comes when the Friday bell rings or when you just start out on a long road trip. I was content.

I'm sure at this point my parents were having complete heart attacks. My bad, parental units. (PU for abbreviation.) I'll add some more funds into the "nice nursing home" jar.

Finally, FINALLY I made it back into my room where I could close the door and call tech support. I changed the password. I checked the email.

I got in.

*I hope you didn't really google it. What a waste of time.

**NOT because you are old, mother. You are NOT OLD. You are a SPRING CHICKEN. I blame it because you are a very cautious person who has instilled this quality in me and you will probably never have a stranger use your savings to fund a vacation to Aruba. It's a GOOD THING.

***That part I blame on reading too much Artemis Fowl.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Weekend Words

As mentioned before. An angsty-ish quote. Because it's been five years since Junior High and apparently I didn't get my fill then. But I like this, and even at twenty still feel this way sometimes. Sooo read on emo children.

"Sometimes I feel like I have multiple personality disorder.

There's a part of me that wants to be innocent and sweet and pretty, you know? Pale pink lips, unchipped white nail-polish, a ribbon in my hair. I'd wear ballet flats and bright sundresses. I'd giggle and smile with small white teeth. I'd dot my i's with hearts. I'd sign my name in rounded cursive. I'd be so perfect it'd make people sick, but they'd have to love me anyways.

But I also want to be the mysterious one- the dark-eyed girl with the beat-up converse shoes and black sketchbooks, lines of cryptic poetry inked on the pulse of her wrist. I'd be either shy and quiet or bitter and darkly sarcastic. In a sick, twisted way, I'd want a painful secret so I could be broken like those girls you read about so often. The ones with the walls and masks and boys who save them.

But then there's a part of me that wants to be... a girl who is not of this world. The one people people can't quite place their finger on. I'd be at the tip of their tongues- always at the tip and nothing more- because I'd have a name like Quicksilver or Starchild or something absurd and weird and wonderful, and I'd dance in the rain, sing, laugh, scribble thousands of poems in the streets with chalk at dawn (or I'd refuse to be tied down by a name) and I'd be bursting with fire and glowing with just this- this energy, and I wouldn't smile or grin- I'd beam, be the one to say I wanted to fly, and no one would ever quite know if I could achieve it or not simply because I'm not fully human, weighed down with rules and beliefs and others. My favorite color would be yellow, and I'd say I was sunshine or rain or summer breezes and people wouldn't be able to argue that I wasn't because I simply was. And they would stare, not knowing whether to smile and be happy for my happiness or shake their heads and worry for my sanity. I'd captivate, paint art abstractly, splatter canvases with all these bright, beautiful colors- but I wouldn't call them because I paint with bursts of light, sky, grass, sunsets- and I'd be random, actually random- not just the way everyone says they are nowadays, and I'd be everywhere and everything at once. I wouldn't be quite real. I'd be imperfect and bizarre and unearthly. But I'd like it- this drifting, this undefined state, untouchable and just burning and burning and burning with life."