October 8, 2009

Question…

Posted in *cringe*, But I am... le sick, Present, Project: Fail, Seven Deadlies, The OCD, The Round, The WTF at 8:32 am by Dagny Taggart

…has anyone ever done a study to correllate evil dictator/mass-murderer types with insomniacs?  Just wondering…

In other news, I need something to do besides eat when I’m stressed.  Since I’m not going to stop being stressed anytime soon – we’re talking 2-3 months, absolute bare-bones minimum, and I would like to fit into my clothes for the foreseeable future, the eating has to stop.

Any other stress-eaters out there?  How do you do it?  And if you aren’t a stress-eater, what do you do when you’re stressed?

The future of my waistbands, and the greater Washington DC area’s supply of candy corn, may depend on your answers.

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January 3, 2008

Lust

Posted in Nerdiness, nutella, Seven Deadlies, The Happy, The How, The Where, The Who at 9:17 am by Dagny Taggart

Damn, this coffee’s cold! Hey Rach, do you mind if I heat this up on your loins?
 
I was thinking I’d post the story about that time I started making out with my date at his work happy hour, both of us tipsy enough to be perfectly fine with such shenanigans, and how his co-workers teased us (for several months after the fact) about taking (I kid you not) a cab numbered 69 towards more of the same.  Good times, good times.

Then I thought I might post about the guy whose sex addiction appeared to manifest itself during the third year of our relationship, while I was in law school.  Inconvenient timing, that – poor boy was forced to seek companionship elsewhere, as I was a whole four-hour drive away.  Have I mentioned taking some satisfaction in the knowledge that it took (at least) 3 women to replace me?  Because I totally do.

I could write about how strange it is that I almost never discuss sex with my closest female friends, some of whom I’ve known for years.  Or how absurdly prudish most of my law school classmates seemed – next time you need to relax, try drinking less and shagging more, maybe?  Those “group study” rooms in the library did have locks, I’m just sayin’…

But the point I’d really like to address is that I’m not so sure a biological imperative should be a sin.  It’s all about how you handle it.  As per comments I’ve strewn about in various places, I really have no problem with anyone doing whatever they want with whomever they want.  Feel like taking a wide stance?  No problem.  Feel better about it if there’s a hole in the sheet?  Go crazy.  I’m sure there are at least as many who would find my own proclivities repugnant, as there are (happily) who profess to share them, and I’ve got far, far better things to do with my time than worry about what everyone else is doing in bed.*

The real sin, I think, is when pursuit of satisfaction causes deliberate and/or unwelcome harm or hurt to someone else.  Especially an innocent third (fourth?  Fifth?  I guess that depends on the situation) party.  What I mean is, so long as everyone involved knows about and agrees to what’s going on and who’s involved, even when that individual isn’t present, I see no problem.**

Other than that?  I think they missed the boat when deciding that this one was supposed to be a sin. 

*I still think they should be doing more of it, though.
**Barring, of course (I wish I thought this could go without saying) anything involving children or animals.

December 19, 2007

Greed

Posted in *cringe*, Darth Vaguer, Guilt, nutella, Seven Deadlies, The Happy, The Just a Little Sad, The Who, The Why, The WTF at 9:11 am by Dagny Taggart

When I’m not self-medicating with a chocolate-hazelnut substance, I’m self-medicating with retail, as my bank balance and credit cards can attest.  This particular reward system was ingrained at a very young age, and that’s a behavior I’m trying to undo.

But really, what I’m greedy for isn’t really the material stuff.  It can be expressed that way, sure – but what I am, is an affection junkie.

And like so many other affection junkies I know, not just any source will do.  Nope.  There are certain people from whom I (not always unreasonably) expect affection on a regular basis – and if I’m not getting it, I get very, very cranky.  Conversely, if I don’t want affection from a particular source, I really, really don’t want it.

The people I consider closest to me, oddly enough, are the ones from whom I require the least.  If you’re one of my people, I can go for months without hearing from you and still think of you as one of the people I can count on no matter what.  If I don’t trust you yet, on some level, I get greedy for constant reassurance. 

And trust me – I know how annoying that is.  I’ve been on the other side of that, know how it feels to have someone demand more from you all the time, to where it’s never enough.  And the only thing I can really do is change the way I handle that – to either focus the energy that fuels the greed elsewhere, or cut ties with someone I can’t seem to trust.  Fortunately, I have several very patient and understanding friends who do a good job of helping me deflect. 

But maybe I just need to accept that the heightened excitement that comes with an anxiety, angst-laden relationship of any kind – familial, friend, other – isn’t worth becoming the kind of person I seem to, under those circumstances, and work on surrounding myself with the kind of people who let me be generous, rather than greedy.

December 12, 2007

Wrath

Posted in *cringe*, Guilt, Seven Deadlies, The Angry, The Why, The WTF at 10:26 am by Dagny Taggart

While I may not be comfortable with the concept of when to get angry, I am more than capable of it.  There’s been a little of it here, but the things that I don’t say are often far worse than the things I do – which, I think, is to my credit.

Moby:  Fuckin’ whore. 
Slams door as he leaves for the last time.

Me:  Take care.
Thinks, “Not that you’d know since you couldn’t lock it up for the last half of our relationship.”

I didn’t say it out loud.  Which is an improvement from my relationship with the ex-fiancé, wherein he and I spent more time honing our expressions of fury than being in the relationship.  The things that I think of saying, sometimes, scare me.

I don’t, which is good.  But what kind of person automatically thinks of the most vicious & cruel retort possible?  What kind of person subconciously sifts through everything she knows about a person until the sentences formed in her mind are perfectly designed and aimed to do the most amount of damage in the fewest syllables?

This is one of the reasons why, when I do get mad, I get very quiet.  I may even seem stupid, unable to hold my own in the ongoing debate/discussion.  It’s because I’m afraid that, if I open my mouth, the worst will come out.

I’ve come close, here.  And some of those things, I’ve re-saved as drafts.  Because I was angry, and rightly so, and I don’t necessarily regret expressing that anger.  But to let it sit there as a reminder, every day…  that seemed like the cruelest sin of all. 

And I know, better than a lot of people, just how damaging and hurtful and lasting those kinds of words can be.  I don’t ever want my voice to be the one rattling around someone’s brain, to be the one heard with startling clarity over and over every time a painful memory resurfaces.  That’s not the legacy I want to leave, deadly sin or no.

December 3, 2007

Sloth

Posted in *cringe*, Seven Deadlies, The Gnomes, The Why, The WTF at 2:20 pm by Dagny Taggart

*yawn*

 Is it that time already? 

If I don’t want to do something, I’ll find a way or a reason not to.  Sometimes I wonder if the main function of my attendance at law school was to learn new ways to justify a more slug-like existence.

I can’t go 24 hours without at least one shower, though.  No compromises there.  And my apartment, though cluttered (especially with my shoes – they have a nomadic existence, preferring to roam the apartment rather than reside in my closet), isn’t dirty

So I’m messily slothful, if not filthily so.  When properly motivated, I can get things done like nobody’s business.  When properly motivated, I can also come up with a billion reasons to not get something done.  Like, this movie’s on!  And I know I own it, but it’s on TV, so I wouldn’t even have to take it out of the case and turn the DVD player on! 

Yes.  I am that slothful.  The television has been known to determine my schedule. 

/confession

November 28, 2007

Gluttony

Posted in Guilt, nutella, Seven Deadlies, The OCD, The Why, The WTF at 9:44 am by Dagny Taggart

And here it is, my eternal struggle:

So, here’s the story of Dagny Taggart’s weight struggles…

Growing up, I had a wide variety of food allergies.  Nuts, anything with citrus (including tomatoes, oranges, berries of any kind), and anything with cocoa at all (including, surprisingly, any cola product).  My food choices, they were limited.  And I’d sneak the things I wasn’t supposed to have, sometimes.  Because how fun is a childhood without peanut butter and jelly sandwiches?  I was quite sure I didn’t want to find out.

These snacks started to catch up with me a little more when I was 12 or so, and the asthma got sufficiently bad so that exercise was more or less out of the question.  I became, not to put too fine a point on it, large.  By the summer between 8th and 9th grade, I was a size 14, pushing a 16.  Which did not suit my 5’8″ frame well at ALL.  Nor was it acceptable in a town 20 minutes from 5th Avenue, where my classmates were wearing designer size 2-4 and constantly dieting.

About 2/3 of the way through my freshman year of high school, I made a number of changes and started to move around a bit more.  I lost about 40 pounds by the time school started up again, and pared off another 20-25 over the next couple of years.  I didn’t do it the right way, exactly, but the right way doesn’t matter so much when you’re 15-18 years old and growing those last two inches.

My first year of college involved a glut of diet Coke, Marlboro Lights, and that slightly painful, yet somehow comforting, constant hunger.  Half a muffin a day plus 3 or 4 Swedish Fish in the afternoon, and I was hovering around 100 lbs.  Fortunately, my friends and this guy helped me rediscover the joys of 3 am hot subs from the delis and cheese fries (with gravy, duh). 

So moderation has always been an issue for me.  I can eat an entire jar of Nutella, or bag of candy corn, or chocolate cake, or pint of ice cream, in one sitting.  To make up for such indulgences, I make sure that everything else I eat is very, very healthy, AND I go to the gym a LOT. 

But it would be so much easier if I could just have, say, one spoonful of Nutella per “consumption instance.”  Then, I might be able to sleep in an extra morning, or have a cheeseburger a little more often, without automatically calculating how many extra minutes/hours I’ll have to spend working it off. 

And don’t even get me started on Black Friday shopping sprees.  Though, I’m probably the only person who came away from that day happier with her twin-pack of 26 ounce jars of Nutella, than anything else she got that day.

40 servings * 200 calories per serving = 8,000 calories * 2 jars = 16,000 calories, = 18 hours of high-intensity cardio.

I’ll be at the gym if you need me.  😀

November 14, 2007

Envy

Posted in *cringe*, Guilt, Seven Deadlies, The Angry, The Just a Little Sad, the pretty, The Who, The Why, The WTF at 10:05 am by Dagny Taggart

I don’t believe in love at first sight.  But within 10 minutes of talking to Webster, I was crushing, hard

Nevermind that I was actually very much in love with my boyfriend, or that Webster was so very much not my type physically.  It helped that he was a more attractive version of his type, but it was his brain that bowled me over.  He was noticeably smarter/more knowledgeable than me, especially when it came to words and writing.  When I found out he was engaged, a bizarre feeling crept over me.  By the time he finished mentioning that she (“Belle”) was a bona fide pageant queen who competed successfully on the national level, in addition to being a student at our law school, I was an interesting shade of verdigris.

Fortunately, a severe allergy to the host’s pet rabbit gave me an obvious, if not attractively so, excuse for making my exit.

My crush on Webster soon faded, but for some reason, Belle’s very existence made me crazy.  She was drop-dead gorgeous, petite and feminine with chestnut curls and perfectly tanned skin.  She was a law student, and thus obviously fairly intelligent.  I don’t know that she ever, once, showed the slightest hint of stress or strain – her clothing?  Never.  Wrinkled.

Obviously, I didn’t know this girl at all.  But because I hadn’t fully absorbed the knowledge of how best to handle such situations, because I was in a really negative space, and I let the hypercompetitive surroundings drag me down rather than rising to meet them, I found myself… kind of… smug, when I heard a rumor that she’d clearly put on a few pounds (which she probably needed, let’s face it).  When I heard she’d had some trouble with the bar exam?  I might have smiled a little, if only on the inside.  It was an ugly grimace, I’m sure.

No, I’m not proud.  In fact, I’ll probably continue to feel guilty about this for quite a while.  Because I realized that my envy stemmed from the fact that I didn’t think that I could compare – my insecurities kept me from trying to achieve the things she had that I admired, and I focused that negativity in precisely the wrong direction.

It’s an easy trap for me to fall into, still.  I have to keep a close watch on myself, and remind myself that it’s okay to wish I’d done what someone else has.   It’s okay, so long as I focus on figuring out how to, and believing that I can, do that for myself – instead of wishing they hadn’t.

November 7, 2007

Pride

Posted in *cringe*, Darth Vaguer, Guilt, Seven Deadlies, The Just a Little Sad, The WTF at 9:28 am by Dagny Taggart

I stumbled across this a little while ago, and mislabeled it “dignity”.  Since then, it’s been nudging me whenever something didn’t portray me in the absolute best light possible.

I love learning new things, but hate doing so in front of people.  This has been a problem in far too many situations – stage fright, it seems, is really little more than the mind’s allergic reaction to humiliation.  Billiards, standard shift cars, eating with chopsticks.  Being in a relationship where you actually let yourself trust and develop expectations.

Now, granted – the penultimate really only involves one witness – your dry cleaner.  That last one, though – there’s a whole host of potential audience members.  Every nosy person who’s ever asked you about your “love life”*, every ex who checks your myspace/friendster/blog (hi!) hoping for signs that your life sucks as much as theirs, and of course, anyone the other person shares their actual intentions with… the peanut gallery is full of possibilities. 

Which is one of the reasons I’m so vague here, sometimes.  No need to invite superfluous audience members. 

So basically, right now, I’m in the mood to ignore anything I might have recently said on the subject and resume my militant breeziness.  Pride and I are so in a fight, and right now, the pride’s winning.  I’m just going to go with it.  Knee-jerk reaction, indeed.

*For some reason, whenever Dr. Taggart utters this phrase, I am possessed by an absurdly strong compulsion to gouge out my eyes.  I wonder why that is…