Organization Amongst The Chaos

After months of talking about it and countless minutes browsing around the furniture section at Target, (only to find it in the organization section of the store) I found exactly what I wanted.

A bookcase.

A black bookcase that fits almost perfectly on my desk. I say almost perfectly because it takes up the majority of the right side. Despite the fact it takes so much room, it’s a welcome piece of organizational beauty.

I can’t say that my desk was a mess before I purchased the bookcase, but I honestly can’t say that it was tidy either.

Going from left to right:

The framed black and silver scratch board portrait of Ville Valo I did Senior year…In front of the picture is a silver and white bank teller style lamp, a black spider web candle holder that holds sweat bands and bracelets I used to wear when I was twelve, a mug I made in my Art class Senior year (that someone else painted because I wasn’t there) holding a red Coke bottle and more bracelets, a glass skull candle holder where my Burt’s Bees lip balms are kept, and a clear glass block that holds my pens and markers.

My black pinstripe Dell laptop I somewhat received four years ago is in front of such items, along with a polar bear PEZ dispenser from the movie The Golden Compass I named Heisenbear (the only reason I bought it is because it’s a bear). A frosted candle holder (that’s actually used for candles), a pumpkin candle holder, a black and white rabbit whose pattern resembles that of a Ladybug, and a clown named Jared that used to be on the top shelf of my locker in the 8th grade.

An Aspen Matthews figure from the comic book Fathom, another glass candle holder, the fist stack of books I own (ones I’ve already read), a black glass block, harboring miscellaneous items, including my Aviator sunglasses and a bookmark I recently unearthed from when I was in Kindergarten. A Vera Bradley coin purse I received for Christmas two years ago, a gold three-tier candle holder, a black picture frame holding two pictures taken on prom night…In front of it a Lego Eiffel Tower my brother made me, a black iPod speaker, a light Jade colored vase with Koi fish as handles, keeping a paper fan and multiple business cards for the same tattoo shop safe…Lastly, a Jack Skellington jewelry box a friend of mine gave to me for Christmas one year, supporting the second stack of books I own (the ones I haven’t read yet).

All 42 books (yes, I bought three new books a couple of weeks ago at the bookstore), now reside on the four shelves of my new bookcase, with the exception of a poetry book a friend gave me Sophomore year, Edgar Allen Poe and Stephenie Meyer. Those six books are placed on top of said bookcase, my Jack Skellington jewelry box is balanced atop the assorted poetry and Poe, while Meyer’s saga is under the protection of Dean, a Beagle stuffed animal that I received after the accident I had at work two years ago.

The rest of the items I mentioned on my laundry-list of things are still on my desk, with the exception of a couple of items that fit perfectly in the free space of the bookcase.  My frosted candle holder and Aspen Matthews reside in the lower right shelf where one book stood alone, and next to that, under  Between a stack of alphabetized pieces and Stieg Larsson’s trilogy, is my black, white and green Vera Bradley coin purse. My Ladybug rabbit is nestled near smaller books on the upper left shelf, while the Lego Eiffel Tower and Heisenbear rest above…Everything is in a proper, organized place. I never thought I’d say that in regards to my desk.

From Bradbury, Ellis and Poe, to Larsson, Palahniuk and Thompson (and every author in between), the pieces of written word that I obsess over are finally arranged as such, and honestly, I’m feeling pretty good about it. I know it probably sounds lame, but it’s true. I feel better about sitting down at my desk to write now. I actually want to. I have more space. I don’t have to be afraid of the possibility of books falling over, or not having enough room to spread out. I’m comfortable sitting at my desk because everything is indeed organized…

It’s really the little things.

If only everything was this easy to organize.

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Fahrenheit 36 (And Only Getting ‘Worse’)

Something tells me I’m not like ordinary girls. Normal girls hyperventilate over the newest fashion and everything shoes…Yes, I am stereotyping my own sex, but I could care less. The truth isn’t considered stereotypical…Where most females splurge on things of that nature, I find myself standing in an entirely different classification. I splurge on items of paper and bindings, consisting of thoughts and experiences by designers of the written word.

Books.

In June, I wrote that I had a number of books, my thoughts on what the world would be like without them and what I myself would do without them. Recently, I realized that I might have a slight obsession. Slight could possibly be an understatement. I stated that I had 31 books. That statement is now a flat-out lie. I now own 36.

36 books.

I’m seriously considering buying a book shelf like my mom has been saying I should for a while. Every time she walks into my bedroom, actually. What can I say? Books have been my safe haven since I was fourteen. Books were my escape from cruel assholes at school, whatever pressure breaking the glass that just happened to be my skin, anything and everything. Books were always there for me. Books and music. But we won’t go into music because I’ve made that obsession clear many times over again and I have no intention of stopping anytime soon.

Better cut to the chase before I become slightly distracted and go off topic.

The five books that I added to my grand collection are as follows:

Bret Easton Ellis’ The Rules of Attraction, his very first novel Less Than Zero and its sequel Imperial Bedrooms…I fell in love with Mr. Ellis’ unique style of writing when I first read American Psycho. It was one of the first stepping-stones in my incredible journey through the land of all things written. I remember reading it like it was yesterday. My fourteen year old mind couldn’t quite comprehend certain aspects of the novel, and wasn’t really shocked by the amount of violence. Now that I’m older, it’s more than safe to say that I understand every aspect and while some of the violence does make me cringe, I’m not shocked by any of it…What the hell does that say about me as a person?… I’ve been in love with his style and I don’t see that changing.

Hunter S. Thompson’s Hell’s Angels: The Strange And Terrible Saga Of The Outlaw Motorcycle Gangs, an interesting and brutal account of a year spent riding with the infamous Hell’s Angels M.C…I fell head-over-heels for Thompson’s trademark Gonzo journalism two years ago when I received Fear and Loathing In Las Vegas for Christmas. My adoration for his signature style only grew stronger when I read The Rum Diary this spring…Yes, as I said in the paragraph above about Mr. Ellis, the same can be said for Mr. Thompson and his style of writing. I don’t see myself falling out of love with his Gonzo journalism any time soon.

The last (not the absolute last) and only book I’ve finished so far, is one I found by accident. I know I say that I find some things by accident all the time, and it is a genuine accident every time. It’s not like I knew I would discover that Slipknot/Stone Sour lead singer Corey Taylor had written a book…Yes, you read right…I was surprised, extremely interested and seriously excited when I found that Mr. Taylor’s work, Seven Deadly Sins: Settling The Argument Between Born Bad And Damaged Good, was on Barnes & Noble’s website. I was searching the frontman because curiosity struck and I wondered what year he was born, (causing me to discover the existence of said book). I’d watched Slipknot’s video for their song “Snuff” for the first time, and was curious, yo. Yes, my inner Jesse Pinkman just came out. I apologize for the slight distraction.

I’d like to say that the same statements I made about Mr. Ellis and Mr. Thompson can also be said for Mr. Taylor, but they cannot. I had never read anything written by Mr. Taylor, with the exception of Slipknot and Stone Sour lyrics of course, but that’s different…Yes, lyrics are indeed words written but there is a difference between words written in a song and a 252 page book. Sure, the person writing both is the same but there is so much more to a person than the songs they play or the lyrics they write…

I could go on about how I came to listen to both Slipknot and Stone Sour and all that jazz, but that would make the post even longer than it is and I’d like to write an entire piece as oppose to lumping it in with a post that talks of said bands’ lead singer. It would just make sense and be a more beautiful thing.

…Now that I’ve established that I shall sooner or later write a post about Slipknot and Stone Sour (which I was actually thinking about writing anyway), I will continue with the topic at hand…I really think I have a problem sometimes, going off of topic and such…I was unsure what to expect when I began to read Seven Deadly Sins because this was Mr. Taylor’s first book and I think it’s safe to say no one knows what to expect when an author writes their first book…And what a great first book it was.

I know some people would be so bold to say that the only reason I purchased the book is because I’m a Slipknot and Stone Sour fan, which I am, but that isn’t the case. I’m always curious about other peoples’ thoughts/opinions on different topics and this is just an example of that. I won’t go into too much detail, but as the name suggests, it is about the Seven Deadly Sins, and Mr. Taylor’s view on how they are indeed not sins at all, but just a part of every human being. While I will say no more (concerning the content of the book), I will say this: I have a massive amount of respect for Mr. Taylor as a person. Seven Deadly Sins is the first book in a very long time, if not the first, to make me come close to crying my eyes out, while still making me laugh my ass off. It is by far the most refreshing piece I’ve read in a long time, and I’m seriously in love with Mr. Taylor’s brutal honesty and sharp wit, as well as his fearlessly uncensored accounts…Why can’t all writers be like that?

….

I do apologize.

….

I found myself distracted, watching Nine Inch Nails videos and Marilyn Manson interviews on YouTube, when I should be completing this post…In all honesty, Mr. Ellis, Mr. Thompson and Mr. Taylor are outstanding writers, each with their own style and venom. I’m unsure as to what else needs to be said. I can go on gushing all day about how I respect both Mr. Ellis and Mr. Thompson as writers, and Mr. Taylor as a musician and writer, but I don’t want to be repetitive. Not today. I do know, however, it’s definitely safe to say that I am not like ordinary girls, and that I indeed have an obsession with books, devouring and savoring every word, sentence and paragraph…And honestly, I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Individuality is a dying breed…Don’t you think it’s time to revive it?

Fahrenheit 31

I have 31 books stacked up high on my desk in my bedroom. The collection varies, including the sparkling vampire saga that is Twilight (Twilight, New Moon, Eclipse and Breaking Dawn), yes I got sucked into the teen sensation when I was seventeen, the intricately woven world of Lisbeth Salander in The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo trilogy (The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, The Girl Who Played With Fire and The Girl Who Kicked The Hornet’s Nest) and a man’s quest to Hell and back that changed the world’s perception of the afterlife forever, Dante’s Inferno trilogy (Inferno, Purgatorio and Paradiso)…Oh what the hell, I might as well mention all the other books I own while I’m at it.

I own the following:  A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess,  American Psycho by Bret Easton Ellis, Of Mice & Men by John Steinbeck,  Fight Club by Chuck Palahniuk,  Dracula by Bram Stoker, Let The Right One In by John Ajvide Lindqvist, Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson, Darkly Dreaming Dexter by Jeff Lindsay, Ink Exchange by Melissa Marr, The Shadow Thieves by Anne Ursu, The Devil In The White City by Erik Larson, IT by Stephen King, Flowers + Filth and Prose & Poems by Wil Francis, Fear and Loathing In Las Vegas and The Rum Diary by Hunter S. Thompson, Most Loved Poems Of The American People, and Edgar Allen Poe: Complete Tales & Poems, not to mention the trilogies and saga I noted in the paragraph above.

The fact that I have a bunch of books isn’t really what’s important though. What is important is where would our society be without them?

You’re probably asking how  this question arose, and as always, I have an answer. I recently purchased three Ray Bradbury novels, The Illustrated Man, Fahrenheit 451 and Something Wicked This Way Comes. I’d read  Wicked when I was thirteen for a school project, and fell in love with it…Whenever I thought about the book in the past, I thought about my grandpa and it’s safe to say I still do. Despite the fact he himself never read the novel (as far as I know), it reminds me of him. My grandpa and the Fall season, along with everything the wonderful season brings. I began reading the novel in Autumn, when I would see him everyday after school, via the too-obvious connection, but I won’t go into too much right now because that’s not the subject at hand…Strangely, I had never read Fahrenheit 451 but it thought I would broaden my horizons. Plus it got awesome reviews, and come on, it’s Ray Bradbury. The story sounded oddly familiar, like one I had my freshmen year, but it was quite different as I read on.

If you aren’t familiar with 451, it tells of a futuristic world where it’s a fireman’s job to start fires instead of extinguish them, burning books, the written word banned by the government. The main character, a fireman who becomes conflicted with everything he thought he knew and all the things he discovers along the way. I won’t give anymore away, but the book had me thinking: Where would we as people be without books?

Being an avid reader since I was fourteen, I honestly don’t know where I would be without books. Books are a great way to pass the time, and depending on what you’re reading, can be a whole lot more entertaining than what’s on TV. They open the door to another world, introducing you to characters that while are fiction, are somehow strangely individuals we can all relate to. Without books, this world wouldn’t be as interesting. Without books, we wouldn’t expand our punctuation and grammar, something that is, believe it or not, pretty important. Without books, we wouldn’t be able to learn about the triumphs and tragedies this world has faced, and see how much we’ve evolved since. Without books, people just might become mindless drones that watch TV 24/7, unable to grasp the possibilities of the written word. Without books…I know for sure I wouldn’t enjoy a world like that.

Next time you pick up a book at your library or from your collection, ask yourself: Where would we be without books? The answer might just amaze.

The written word is your escape from the every day, a safe haven when your own world isn’t.

The Girl With The Raindrop Tattoo

I’m not going to go into a huge, senseless rant about how I haven’t blogged since February because honestly that’s boring and I really don’t want to write about something boring. It’s almost like the past two months have been lackluster but they certainly haven’t. I know I said that this year will be different as far as the writing is concerned, and it definitely will be. I just haven’t really had the impulse to write or didn’t think I had anything interesting to write about…Until right now.

Way back in January, I mentioned that I put a healthy dent in Stieg Larsson’s The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, and thanks to Netflix, I watched all three Swedish films in the trilogy before I finished the novel. Strangely, it didn’t change how I felt about the book or stifled me from finishing the grand piece of work. Usually when I read a book, I’ve already seen the movie or I just end up losing interest in the novel because I already know the outcome of story. Sometimes it happens, other times it doesn’t. In the case with GWTDT, I found myself even more drawn into it and wanted to finish it at a quicker pace in order to get my hands on the next one. As I type, I’m currently involved with the third and final book in the installment, The Girl Who Kicked The Hornet’s Nest, and with 538 pages to go, I’d say I’m well on my way finishing the brilliant trilogy.

The reason why I say brilliant is because that’s exactly what it is. I remember when I first saw a preview or something on TV for the Swedish GWTDT, I didn’t really think much of  the book or really the movie for that matter. I just thought they were some films that looked pretty good that I would probably never watch because they were subtitled. While there’s nothing wrong with subtitles, I couldn’t picture myself sitting for however long the movie was, reading subtitles, trying to figure everything out. As time went on, I started to see the books together in box sets at different bookstores, and then my mom bought my sister The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo for either a birthday or Christmas gift. I don’t really remember which occasion. Regardless of the occasion, there’s no denying that the movie is pretty damn good as well. Both Swedish and American.

Most of the time it seems like when foreign films are taken over the ocean and made into American films, they tend to lack in some respects, whether it be character, plot, etc. This surprisingly cannot be said for The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo. I think what truly made the American version is the character of Lisbeth Salander, played by Rooney Mara. Her portrayal of Lisbeth was amazing. I absolutely adored Noomi Rapace’s equally beautiful portrayal of Salander in the original film, but there is no real comparison because both women brought their own brand of fury and beauty to the character…Lisbeth is a character all her own, unlike any other heroine out there. She’s extremely intelligent and moralistic, but at the same time is damaged in a way, doing things in a way that no one else would think of. She’s the type of character that you can relate to without even realizing such relation was possible. The whole time I read the book, and while watching both films, I felt some kind of connection with Lisbeth. I’ve in no way shape or form had the type of life she as a character had experienced, but she has this almost real-life quality that makes you empathize and root for her, while still questioning her actions. It isn’t every day that you stumble upon a type of character with that kind of audacity…Both Rapace and Mara do an incredible justice to one of the most interesting and original characters to date.

Needless to say, I’ve gushed about how in love I am with The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo trilogy, (or technically the Millennium trilogy as it states on the back of The Girl Who Kicked The Hornet’s Nest) and is starting to sound like one big book/movie review, but it’s not so chill out. Aside from reading like there’s no tomorrow, I found my deeply hidden talent during that week of insanely beautiful weather in March. When I still worked the stock room and compactor last summer, I took one of the coffin-shaped boxes suits are packaged in off the line and vowed to paint something awesome onto it. Almost a year later, with a couple of months to spare, I finally broke out my acrylic paints and began to make magic. The result: A gnarled, spooky looking tree with a bright moon behind it and dark purple layered over an equally dark blue as a background. Below my masterpiece that is my awesome looking tree (if I do say so myself), is a red anchor, accented with yellow to portray as years-old rust, with an oddly colored green and red rope intertwining behind said anchor, all on a light blue backdrop. It doesn’t seem like I accomplished that much of it because there is only the front of the box completed, but when I look back and think about the time and effort I put into it, it’s definitely something to feel good about.

Around the same time I started to work on my painting masterpiece that is the coffin-shaped box, my sister was making plans to move out of the house in which she had been living. Not just out of her place of dwelling, but out of the state as well. This might not seem like a big deal and at first it honestly didn’t, then I started to think about it. I’d known she would be leaving for a while before it started to sink in. She and her fiancé had planned on moving sooner, but things didn’t turn out as hoped and it became postponed. They both visited the state many times and were very fond of it ever since. I remember she brought me back a pair of Orca whale earrings the second time she was there. She would be leaving the state the end of March and I wouldn’t be able to see either of them until they came across the country for a visit. I say across the country because it isn’t a state or two over.

My sister and her fiancé are now residing in Seattle, some 2,000 miles from Ohio. I have to admit, it’s a little weird not having her live in the same state anymore. Usually I could just text her and ask if I could come over and hang out, ask if she would want to get coffee or just plain hang out. I remember a couple of years ago on Halloween her and I made the best pumpkin roll I’ve ever had, and before she left for Washington, we made awesome oatmeal chocolate chip cookies and once again two of the best pumpkin rolls I’ve ever had. I may not be able to bake or hang out with her anymore, but that doesn’t mean I’ve lost contact with her completely. We still text, she reads my blog and we’re both on Facebook…Oh where would the world be without it?…At least we’re using the site for what it was meant for, reconnecting. Whatever distance we are from each other, we’re never completely apart.

The month of April consisted of one of the three ‘Friday the 13ths’ we shall see this year, and while I’m not superstitious in any sense of the word, it hit me like it never had before. I woke up as I usually would, make myself some coffee, when out of nowhere, I felt this pain in my right side. At first I thought it was nothing, and just wrote it off as an ache or something. How foolish of me. The pain only got worse. I lay on the couch in the most pain I’ve ever been in my life. Yes, you read right. The most pain I’ve ever had in my life. This is coming from the girl with the raindrop tattoo. (If you read the post about my first tattoo, then you understand the reference). I remember I laid there for an hour, frustrated and fed up with it, when it stopped hurting altogether. I then proceeded to get on with my day, free of the pain my in side…Or so I thought. Some three and a half hours later, I was in pain again worse than what I started out with. At 9 ‘o clock I finally decided it was time to go to the emergency room. I’ve said before I have a high pain tolerance, but there’s only so much a person can take.

Long story short, after spending somewhere around 3 hours at the hospital, watching Storage Wars and Deadliest Catch, the verdict was ruled that I had developed kidney stones. Kidney stones. I then found out that individuals with Crohn’s Disease are more prone to kidney stones. I was given a prescription for pain, instructions to drink plenty of fluids and make an appointment with a urologist. After making the appointment with the urologist and having a CT scan done, it was determined that I indeed did not have a kidney stone. All the symptoms considered it be in fact a kidney stone, but in the end there was nothing there. Once I received this news, my urologist said that it could be something else, like a lump in the meat of my kidney. A lump in the meat of my kidney. Gross. After I had another procedure done, the verdict was that there was nothing wrong with me. In conclusion, I have no idea what caused me to have that pain and might never know. The story of my life as far as my health is concerned.

From my current obsession with The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo trilogy and my almost masterpiece of a painting to everything in between, I’d say the past two months have been interesting to say the least. I wonder what the next couple months will bring. Only time will tell I guess…And you can be sure I’ll actually be blogging about it.

I’m the girl with the raindrop tattoo…I know exactly where I belong.

Plunging In, Head-First 

The last time I graced this blog with my words and experiences was in November…2 months ago…No, I haven’t fallen off the face of the Earth, no matter how many times I wished I could. Yes, I said it. There are times where I just wanted to turn off my cell phone, and not deal with anyone. Not log onto Facebook for a couple of days, and not deal with anything. It’s safe to say I did that. So while I haven’t fallen off the planet, I have learned a multitude of new things about myself since the beginning of the new year.

I remember at the end of my last post that I had no idea what would come from Autumn’s falling leaves and Winter’s impending snow…It’s now more than safe to say that I know what they brought…No job, surprisingly amazing health and an obstacle I’d rather not mention for the memories’ sake. Yes, you read correctly. My baker job didn’t work out as planned, but strangely, that isn’t really one of my major concerns right now. That’s right. I said a job isn’t one of my main concerns at the moment. I will find another job when I’m damn good and ready. Sure, my mornings are sometimes sleepless because of the night schedule I managed to uphold, but that’s nothing episodes of The Twilight Zone and other various titles on Netflix can’t occupy. And reading. I’m reading again. I finished The Devil in the White City that I’d been reading since last April, American Psycho (for the second time), The Great Gatsby, and am currently putting a healthy dent in The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo. It’s safe to say my inner bookworm is finally being unleashed after a long hiatus.

While the new year brought out my long-lost passion for reading, it also brought good health. Amazing health at that. Now, it might not seem like a very amazing thing, great health and all, but for me it is. Especially after what it put me through last year. No, it didn’t put me in the hospital or anything like that, but it made me learn something new about myself that I don’t think I was really seeing…To put it bluntly, I turn into a bitch when I don’t feel good. When I’m having a stomach-clenching flare-up, I become frustrated and take everything out on everyone else…Thankfully, I’m not like that anymore. I didn’t really change who I am, but rather just my medication. Sure, it might be more pills I have to take now, but I’m feeling a hell of a lot better. I wake up without stomach pain. I don’t find myself staying up at night because of stomach pain. I don’t randomly freak out and go into manic fits because of said stomach pain. I’m feeling amazing, and it’s a great feeling.

Despite the fact the beginning of this new year kind of sucked in its own little way, it’s also been the best start I would’ve asked for. I learned that while it’s great to have a job, I’m a lot less stressed without it, and feel significantly better health-wise. I don’t think I will ever really stop reading, writing or blogging, not matter how long I find myself uninspired or on hiatus for. I have a lot of new ideas for posts and poetry buzzing around in my brain, along with a couple posts I’ve been working on for a good 2 years now. Yes, you read right. I have a couple posts I started 2 years ago and have yet to finish. I blame my lack of motivation at the time, and everything in between…

I know I said this before, but I’ll say it again. This year is going to be different. No more going a couple of months without blogging. When I first started my blog, I would write every day, sometimes multiple times a day, and honestly, I sometimes miss that. This year will definitely be different. I’ll share more of my poetry and such, along with anything else that strikes my fancy that particular day, along with the unfinished posts I mentioned earlier.

…With all of this said, I’m just happy. I’m ready for whatever this new year has to offer.

I’m plunging in, head-first.

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.

Procrastination At Its Finest?

Procrastination. It’s completely normal. Almost like human nature. Almost, not quite yet. People become preoccupied with a hundred different things at once or something called laziness takes over and what needs to get done won’t be finished ’til the last-minute. Sadly, I have succumb to dreaded procrastination more than once, but for some reason I think that streak of surrendering is somehow coming to an end.

I’ll be completely honest: I’m not a big fan of research papers. The first research paper I had to do was last school year, and it wasn’t that fun. Being a new school year now, I have to do another required paper. Thankfully, this paper is easier and not due at the end of the year, as with the latter. There is a topic, not a thesis. An author, not an issue that we agree or disagree with.

Needless to say, this year’s research paper is on an author of our choosing or one that we were reading. Chosen by the student, nonetheless. It seemed like most people picked the first author that came to their head, like they didn’t really think about. Their brains just said ‘write down this name and pass the paper to the next person.’ I had no idea what author I would do a paper on. I had about five lined up, with obviously one being the victor. Unsure which author should be cut from my list, I chose two. Yeah, that probably sounds like a hassle or that I’m being a ‘teacher’s pet’ or something, but that’s not it at all. I thought the only way to get some kind of point across would be to do two papers on two completely different authors.

I have to admit, I was kind of surprised by the reactions I got when I was asked by fellow students what author I was doing my paper on. It’s not like the answer was different each time, it was the same every time. Dante Alighieri and Hunter S. Thompson. I got this bleak, almost dumbfounded look each and every time. Granted, I didn’t fully know about Dante until I saw something on the History Channel. I knew that he wrote Inferno, but didn’t know THAT much about him. As with Thompson, I didn’t know he wrote Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas until I saw the movie starring the beloved Johnny Depp. I did a little research after seeing the movie, thus finding even more about him. So, I guess I can’t really say that I’m surprised, but it sort of just shows that either I read too much or other people don’t read at all.

If anything really surprised me, though, it would have to be the fact that I’ve already gotten the majority of the information on my idols. Which isn’t something I usually do. For my previous research paper, I procrastinated and I felt like it wasn’t the best I could write, or write and research. I just flat-out wasn’t very happy with it, and I actually want to be happy with the things I write. Whether it be recreational creativity or not. The entire reason why I’m starting this paper a month early. Call it me breaking the curse of procrastination or not, but my motivation is probably at its best right now. I can’t say the same thing for volleyball, though. My motivation for that is still up in the air.

My motivation for writing definitely doesn’t lack foundation and the breakdown.