Thursday, January 21, 2010

The Prophetic Park Bench

I am officially graduated, summa cum laude. My thesis advisor is going to help me get my translation published and another professor has already requested I give a copy to the Trettor Collection. I was offered a part in a local film. I have a phone interview for graduate school. My life is feeling a little more on track. I'm applying for jobs on a Careers website that has strange search categories, some really general like "Business," others weirdly specific like "Disaster Preparedness."

Yesterday during my quirkyalone date with Tara, we stumbled upon this wise old park bench at the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden.

"Affluent college-bound students / face the real prospect / of downward mobility / feelings of entitlement clash with / the awareness of imminent scarcity / there is resentment of growing up / at the end of an era of plenty / coupled with reassessment of / conventional measures of success."

That pretty much sums everything up.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Stress Bomb

Evaporate some bills,
Edit thesis,
Attempt to apply for grad school,
Find out my graduation date might be pushed back to Spring 2010,
Suffer minor panic attack,
Take a nap.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Routine Mid-Morning Cry

Okay, that's done.
Back to job searching, dealing with bills, revising my thesis, running errands, cleaning house, selling my possessions on ebay, and watching every available episode of 30 Rock.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Post Grad

I thought upon graduation I would feel immense relief, the ultimate sense of freedom and possibility. Instead I feel the opposite, I feel aimless, stressed, and anxious. Over the past month, I've applied for over thirty jobs. Haven't heard back from anyone. That's not even just for the "Big Girl" jobs, as my roomie calls them, that I've applied for: I've also been looking for jobs in retail and waitressing, in anything. My funds are quickly dwindling and I have more and more bills to pay. On NPR, the host announced he had promising news about the job market. I turned the volume up only to hear that "just" 85,000 jobs were cut in December 2009, down from 600,000 jobs being cut per month in 2008.

Shutting out my problems for a few more days, I took a weekend trip with friends to a lake cabin hidden in a winter wonderland. We borrowed a parent's luxury SUV and spent three days drinking coffee and cheap wine, playing Scrabble, Boggle, and the Beatles Rock Band on Wii, and dancing around to Florence + the Machine, Mumford & Sons, and Vampire Weekend, decked out in scarves and leggings. Basically, it was a weekend of poor college hipsters posing as suburban yuppies.

Unfortunately, our illusion of peace and security was shattered before a viewing of "(500) Days of Summer," during a preview for the film "Post Grad" starring Alexis Bledel. This is supposed to be something like a cute romantic comedy. But to us, the generation for whom it was created, it read more like a réaliste horror film. Ashley even had to leave the room to avoid suffering a panic attack. I squeezed my eyes shut so I wouldn't cry. I assume everything works out for Alexis in the end, but it'll be awhile before I find out, since "Post Grad" is listed as having a "very long wait" on my netflix queue. Maybe I'll have more of my own shit worked out by the time it's my turn to see the movie. Oh to be young, slightly gifted and a recent graduate during an economic crisis.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

My love affair with the Twin Cities

To cope with my recent move away from Paris and my quirkyaloneness in general, I have decided to romance Minneapolis (with a few dates with Saint Paul).

When I moved down here last week, I got hopelessly lost for awhile, and I sadly realized how much better I know Paris compared to my own city.

Well, this year, I'm going to change that. I am going to take Minneapolis like I did Paris, with to-do lists, pictures, and writing.

So far this week, I have ventured to the Saint-Paul Farmer's Market, where I Holga'd and got free sunflowers, to the Bulldog bar in Uptown, where I tried some Belgium Hoegarden beer and also got a glass of my trusty Leffe that brought back so many memories (or lack there-of...), and the Falafel King place on Lyndale, where I ordered the "appetizer" Maza, which is actually 2 meals in itself.

I had a lovely reunion with the Minneapolis Central Library, where I checked out a bunch of French novels, French films, and an American memoirs about time spent in France. Also the aforementioned Supercapitalism & Quirkyalone books.

I've scoped out the new and improved Seward Co-Op, where I was blown away! We then picnicked by Lake Calhoun, and it was lovely. I took my cuz & sis to Pizza Luce on Seward and consumed an entire Mashed potato pizza by myself. I ventured downtown to have lunch with Teddy - we had Jimmy John's at the park by the Orchestra Hall. Over in Dinkytown, I ate at the newly (new to me, anyway) expanded Mesa Pizza, had my favorite Southwest Beans slice, with a Mountain Dew, and felt wonderfully at home, despite missing fresh croissants with some French coffee like Phantom Limb Syndrome.

To-Do List
Sonic! (Even better after dark)
the Titanic exhibit
the M.I.A. and the Walker / Sculpture Gardens
Much Ado About Nothing at Theater in the Round
(500) Days of Summer
Caffetto's, Cupcake, Bordertown
that French restaurant on Lyndale
Galactic Pizza
(So much food!)
read, write, and take pictures
find more things to add to this list.

I think this list ever-expanding list, with school and work, will be more than enough to prevent me from slipping into a reverse-culture shock depression.

So Minneapolis, will you go out with me?

Saturday, September 5, 2009


Living in: a cute little house in Uptown
Eating: spoonfuls of hummus (I ran out of pita bread)
Listening to: French radio station online out of Lille (
Reading: Supercapitalism by Robert B. Reich
Wearing: Charlotte Russe top that I haven't worn in years, same pair of Vanity jeans for the fourth day in a row, and purple ballet flats I just bought.
Contemplating: my life as a quirkyalone (Quirkyalone: a Manifesto for uncompromising romantics, by Sasha Cagen)
Talking to: Tara (London), via skype, and Shana, via thin walls
Dreading: the start of school and work
Fearing: greek olives and sharp objects
Healing: stitched arm, wisdom teeth gaps, and a disappointed heart
Loving: solitude, coffee, electro music, anything French
Wanting: a mac, an ipod, a quirkytogether relationship
Believing in: friendship, poetry, environmentalism

Thursday, July 23, 2009

La Crise chez nous

New vocabulary I learned today grâce à or à cause de (depending on how you look at it) a series of unfortunate events in our apartment:
un disjoncteur - circuit breaker
une allonge / un prolongateur - extension cord
une prise - outlet / plug-in
un fusil - stove igniter
les plaques - hotplates
brancher, débrancher - to plug-in, to unplug
sauter - to blow a fuse

Needless to say, our hotplates suddenly decided to blow a fuse while Misa was in the middle of cooking us a delicious meal (mashed potatoes, green beans, and corn). We ran around with our heads cut off for awhile trying to figure out what to do. (Did you know, humans can live up to several hours without their heads?). We soon figured out that our hotplates were connected to the fridge so NEITHER worked anymore, and we had just gone grocery shopping. Our landlord kindly lent us some hotplates he found in his basement, that we hooked up in Misa's bedroom, and we steadily consumed perishable items all night until we could deal with this problem more thoroughly in the morning.

It was quite a stressful evening, but at least we got more than enough calcium, and now Misa can wake up to the smell crackling bacon if she wants.