Among Many Firsts 

Being an avid reader, I would’ve thought that it was somewhere I’d gone frequently, but it turns out that that was not the case. Immediately walking through the doors, I felt some strange and interesting sense, of well, belonging. The place I’m talking about, ladies and gentlemen, is Borders.

Okay, so I know that walking into Borders might not be such a big deal to most people, but seeing as I don’t exactly view myself as most people (call it whatever you want to) and the fact that I’d never been in that particular store before, it’s a big deal to me. It was just the coolest thing to me…Seeing so many books and magazines, along with a Seattle’s Best coffee shop built right in, it was just amazing to me… My own little piece of vanilla coated and caramel drenched heaven. I probably sound like a total book nerd and/or caffeine addict, but with every fiber of my being, I don’t care. The Borders bookstore across the street from the mall that my boyfriend and I had exited yesterday amazed me and that is that.

But back to what really matters. It is indeed safe to say that this entire week was a great deal of firsts. For starters, not only did I enter a gigantic Borders for the first time, and proceed to try Seattle’s Best, I read Metal Hammer magazine for the first time. Ever. I’m usually enthralled whenever I get my monthly issue of Revolver, but this was totally different. Upon walking in, we found ourselves drawn to the magazine section. We went from the Culture & Politics to the ever-important and far more interesting Music section. The first thing that caught my eye was a magazine with Muse lead Matthew Bellamy on the cover. I honestly don’t know why. My eyes quickly scanned over a little further until I saw this month’s issue of Alternative Press, fully equipped with Bring Me The Horizon’s Oli Sykes and Alkaline Trio’s Matt Skiba gracing the Warped Tour edition cover. I hadn’t read AP in years and thought I’d give it a quick read. I scanned through and noticed that there were some good bands on Warped Tour this year (despite the fact it already came to my city!).

Finding myself slightly bored with it, I put it back and discovered that my boyfriend and I had both discovered the July issue of Metal Hammer at the same time, or at least a few seconds after. Gracing the cover with their presence was Avenged Sevenfold. We both immediately noticed what was missing from the equation and equally found that it just didn’t look right. Where usually five black-clad men would stand now only four stood against the artful graffiti on the wall shot behind them. It was the first magazine cover we both had seen without the late, beloved drummer, Jimmy “The Rev” Sullivan. Cleverly enough, to our surprise, the graffiti on the wall shot behind the band was that of The Rev himself…With deathbat wings.

After saying that ‘it just doesn’t look the same’ and ‘we should totally read the article’, we decided to stop at the Seattle’s Best coffee conveniently attached to the bookstore and well, read the article. We both ordered cold coffees, one vanilla and the other caramel, and sat down at one of the many tables. We then proceeded to take turns reading, while enjoying the cool, sweet goodness of our coffee drinks. Just looking upon the Metal Hammer cover apparently wasn’t enough to see how much the band changed, I had to literally read to learn that. Sure enough when I took the magazine from where it was set on the table, I found that there was quite a lot that was different. I wouldn’t exactly go to that extreme and say that a lot of things were different, but it was all too clear that they’re growing up as individuals as oppose to just growing up as a band. My boyfriend and I both noticed little details that would’ve being so-called personal trademarks to each member have changed some way or another, giving way to a whole new array of trademarks. Sure, I think it’s safe to say that those insignificant brandings on each one of them will be missed somehow, but it is safe to say that it shows that they have the ability to change (as they’ve always had) and they still know how to embrace right now…Basically, the article psyched me up for their much anticipated fifth album, set to come out in the less than two weeks…More on that a little later.

Needless to say, drinking Seattle’s Best coffee and reading Metal Hammer were some firsts for me, but there are definitely more where those came from. For the first time in a very long while, I found two things from Hot Topic that were actually worth buying. Yes, you heard right… I found two things that were actually worth spending money on…There was a time when I would frequently buy something in Hot Topic, almost every time I went. I would walk in, and as if automatically find something I liked and bought it. The same cannot be said now. Don’t get me wrong, I still like the store, I just don’t find anything that I really like and, for that matter, would feel comfortable spending money on. Among all the new-age band tees and never-ending array of Twilight gear, I saw them: A black and white baseball style shirt with lime green, neon pink, and gray photo strips of a ribcage and a black Boondocks Saints tee, with “Veritas, Aequitas” in red down the sides. It made me smile all huge and goofy knowing that for once I’d actually found two shirts that I actually liked and didn’t feel like it would be a complete waste buying them.

Aside from my tee shirt purchases, I also thought I would try a different color for my lip rings. Yes, my lip is pierced. Twice to be correct and exact. Snakebites. I’ve had them for two months, but never really felt like mentioning them until now. It was definitely a first, walking into a tattoo shop that I’d never been in before, fully determined to get metal stakes driven through my lip one after the other. Okay, not really, but still. I’d been wanting to get my lip pierced for two years and after I got my braces off (which was last September!), I felt like it was time.

My dad and Timmy (yes, my boyfriend indeed has a name) accompanied me for the piercing-of-the-lip, which I thought was pretty cool and kind of strange at the same time…Anyway, as I looked around at the vibrant tattoo designs that graced the walls, I felt comfortable and not at all worried or scared about what was about to happen. I was taken back by one of the piercers, I honestly didn’t catch his name, and was told to sit down on a bench. We made some small talk as he put plastic gloves on and started to get all the needed equipment, then he told me to just relax, which surprisingly, I already kind of was. Two metal stakes driven through both sides of my lip and two 16g lip rings later, I was sitting on the couch in the waiting section of the tattoo shop, reading the assorted magazines and looking at tattoo designs with Timmy. I’ll admit that after I got them, I did regret it a little bit (mainly the constant need to be cleaned and the fact that there could be absolutely no kissing involved…thankfully prom was the weekend before!), but after a while, I didn’t mind. Especially, when I came into school that following Monday. I was honestly surprised at how many people said they liked it or that it looked good on me. Which, I would say that it indeed does. It’s a piercing that I can actually pull off. I’m happy to say that two months have passed since my snakebites and they healed up pretty nicely and kissing can no longer be scratched out of the equation. My lip rings are now an 18g, icy blue, as oppose to the silver 16g I was fitted with how long ago. I have to say that I favor the blue over silver, and the smaller size doesn’t hurt either. I’m honestly really glad I got snakebites.

These are my firsts so far. Granted, there are indeed probably a lot more, but I can’t think of them right now, or they just haven’t happened yet. Either way, being surrounded by a good amount of firsts is pretty good. I’m more than certain that there will be a whole assortment of adventures in store for me this summer. I just need to know where to look.

Never be afraid to try something new, you just might surprise yourself.

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