Tuesday, August 31, 2010

It's Just Not Rational

I was in class today, and my professor was talking about the Holocaust. In particular, he was talking about the wife of one of the men in charge of Auschwitz. He said that the wife had claimed that she knew nothing about what was going on, and had no idea of what her husband was in charge of. He wondered how on earth you could be unaware of this, and came to the conclusion that there is simply a part of women that is irrational.
I started thinking about this after I left the class, and I think maybe he's right and wrong at the same time. Women do have their irrational sides, but then again, everyone does. And how can we judge what is rational for one person or another? It's all based on our own personal world view, and perhaps there are a few other people out there who share our views, but all in all, it comes down to just what we think. So really, rationality is all relative.
Another thought occurred to me, in the same string. Perhaps that wife of that German officer was not irrational. In fact, perhaps she was completely rational, in her own way. She probably knew what was going on, for as my professor pointed out, how could you not, but she was probably ignoring it as best she could. Think about it: she has been married to this man for some undisclosed amount of time, most likely a few years at least; she has known him and loved him and seen all sides of him, or so she thinks; then, suddenly, she discovers that he has been doing the most horrible things to people, that he has become the devil to someone else's nightmare, and what is she supposed to do? Leave him? She probably still loves him. Tear her hair out? Go insane? Throw herself on a gun? She could only do the thing that seemed most rational to her: ignore it and try to move on with her life.
I'm not saying that this is for sure what she did, because obviously no one but her really knows, but this is where I'll put my money for the time being. Because really, we all do that. When there is a situation that is totally out of our control and that we know we can't deal with, we do what comes naturally, and possibly rationally, to us, and ignore it. It might not be what everyone else thinks is "rational" but then again they're in a whole different set of shoes, so they can't really pass judgement. Although, God love em, they will try. After all, we're only human.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Paging Doctor Life?

Several years ago - so long ago it seems like a past life - I broke my wrist playing games at recess. As I sat with my mother in the hospital, my mind began to go over all the horror stories I'd heard about bones growing back improperly and doctors having to re-break them. Oh the pain and torture that must have been! Luckily it was a hairline fracture and healed up perfectly.
Now, however, as I'm getting older, I realize that re-breaking is something that might not be so horrible after all. In fact, it's downright good for us. And I'm not talking about just bones here. What about all the heartbreaks? All the emotional trauma we go through in life. When our heart is broken, it often cannot heal properly, and we are left bitter and confused and angry. Wouldn't it serve to reason, then, that our heart should be re-broken in order for it to heal, properly, a second time?
I know that I've had a small taste of heartbreak and heart ache, certainly not enough to warrant a doctor visit yet, but I've observed it in other people, and I'm beginning to think that re-breaking is the path to healing for some. I've heard plenty of friends who've just been through break-ups talk about how much it hurts and how they'll never find anything better. Then a few months later, after they've been sufficiently bittered and angered against the world, someone else comes along and hurts them. Only this time, the aftermath is a lesson rather than a self pity party.
But it can be different things for different people: a death, rejection, alienation, even something as simple as ruining a favorite piece of clothing. It happens, and suddenly your world is rocked and you realize what mistakes you have been making, how much of your life you have been wasting in bitterness and resentment.
So let's just say that when it comes to emotional hurts and broken hearts, I can only hope that if you can't heal properly, Dr. Life comes along to break you again and give you a fresh start.

Friday, August 06, 2010

I Can Hear Clearly Now

I recently paid a visit to my doctor that inspired an idea in me. She suggested using something like a favorite TV show or audiobook as incentive for exercising. Hmm...audiobook, eh? That certainly appeals. I like reading but I don't like working out...why not combine the two?
But wait a minute, audiobooks are usually completely against my book morals. Why be lazy and listen when you can make the effort and read? It just doesn't make sense, and since I'm in the business of disciplining myself, I couldn't see much of an option.
And then! A loophole! There are hundreds of books out there that I would love to read but I just don't have the time or money to collect all of them when I'm not even sure I'll be able to get through them. So why not listen to them? It'd be about the same thing, and allow me to multitask as well as encourage myself in my weight-loss goals. Perfect!
And may I just say how well it's worked so far. I've downloaded Eat Pray Love by Elizabeth Gilbert and The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot. I'm limiting myself to specifically books that I'm interested in, but would never be able to get through reading on my own. So far, I'm on chapter 3 of Eat Pray Love and I'm dying for more. But by forcing myself to wait for it, I'm actually trying to come up with more ways that I can work out. It's a fantastic incentive, and I can't believe that I've never considered it before. I'm hoping this can only be a good thing for my life.
So when someone says, "Can you hear me now?" my automatic response will be "Only if you're reading to me!"

Wednesday, August 04, 2010

Something Old, Something Blue

Today, a good friend of mine and I perused the local antiques store, and let me tell you, I'll probably be spending my next paycheck there. I love the vintage, aged feel of all the stuff there. How you can tell that it was something somebody loved and wanted, something somebody used and passed on. It's also a great way to just recycle beautiful treasures that would otherwise end up in the dump.
My initial intent on going there was to get a typewriter. I've been dying to plunk away on a typewriter for several weeks now, and I was at my wits end waiting to get enough time to go and find one. I had seen the absolute perfect one at the antique store, a little brown portable one with extra ribbon and a manual for only $25. I'm now kicking myself for not getting it. However, I did find one, a rather nice Underwood with the classic round keys and manual bar. I am falling in love with it, although I need to get some more ribbon for it asap. It was a good buy at only $15 because part of the slide bar was broken, although that in no way affects it's typing. So now I can live out my little vision of staying up late at night, click-clacking away at the typewriter with a single light on and soft jazz playing in the background, a hot cup of tea at my side and my glasses pushed up on my nose...ah. Heaven.
My other find at the store actually came before I had even decided on the typewriter. On a whim, I dove in between the clothing racks to look at the purses. I ran into a horrid navy blue satchel with faux-snake rope accents and a tassel zipper; blech. Next came a brown kiss-clasped little bag with a mighty high price tag for such a simple piece. But after that, third time's the charm: there it was, a blue little bag with a slip clasp and white sides and handles, the blue a faux woven pattern. Dread filled me, however, as I opened the bag to assess the lining damage. To my surprise, it was beautiful. Not a stain or tear in sight. And only $10! How on earth could such a beautiful little bag go for so cheap? I wasn't about to question. Instead I held on to it for dear life until I could get to the cash register.
So, I've got a bit of advice for you in this: be sure to stop at the antiques store next time you're in town. You never know what vintage deal will be waiting for you. And always remember, one girl's junk is another girl's summer purse.

Sunday, August 01, 2010

The Inspiration Never Stops

Well first off, let me just share that the almost-kitten-heel is a total sham. Give me a solid 2 and 1/2 any day, just keep that low-riding bull away from me.
The main topic here today, however, is the recent explosion of fashion-related inspiration I've been having. And it's all stemming from music. I listen to a song and suddenly there's a whimsical waif of a girl floating around in my mind in a very specific dress and atmosphere. I've successfully executed 4 of these visions and I have about 3 or 4 more to go. My only frustration now is that I don't have the seamstress skills to bring these creations to life. So if anybody knows someone who likes to sew and wants to make clothes but lacks the entire imagination, let me know.
This also brings up my other recent obsession: Vogue. I am absolutely obsessed with it. It's fascinatingly creative, it keeps my addiction to fashion rolling, and also gives me some cultural enhancement that I can't get around here. I tried that with Elle but it was just too sporadic in it's layout and articles. It couldn't keep me focused. Vogue keeps me focused as well as deliciously satisfied.
My new obsession has gotten me to thinking about my future. What about writing for a magazine? Why couldn't I do it? I could do it and live the life of independence I want, but also have that freedom of creativity (to an extent) at work. I highly doubt that my current University offers anything in that field, simply because it's Murphy's law that I want it and they don't have it, but maybe that's a good thing. If it's something that I've decided I want for sure, then I'm more likely to really push my own limits to get it. Let's just hope that it all works out soon, because I'm not getting any younger and I'm eager to start my career. Until then, I'm just going to keep making my choices and plugging along.