Tuesday, February 24, 2009

In the end, it really has nothing to do with fortune.

Have you ever heard of the game "Fortunately Unfortunately?" It can be quite fun and allows for considerable creative freedom, because it deals mainly with hypotheticals. If you've never played it, I would like to explain the game to you, using the example of my life in the past week. Each scenario listed, whether fortunate or unfortunate, is added in turn by each player. The game continues until a) it ends happily, b) the stated scenario is so unfortunate it could never be recovered from, or c) it simply gets too ridiculous to continue.

One day, Karen and Carla planned a weekend together in San Luis Obispo.
UNFORTUNATELY the trip was never realized because of their grandma's declining health.
FORTUNATELY they both had the weekend off, so they planned a trip home instead.
UNFORTUNATELY Karen could not fly out until late Friday night.
FORTUNATELY she got a good deal on the ticket.
UNFORTUNATELY her flight (the last flight of the night) from San Francisco - where she had a layover - to Medford was canceled!
FORTUNATELY it was canceled for mechanical reasons so the airline paid for her hotel in San Francisco.
UNFORTUNATELY she had to stand in long lines for long periods of time.
FORTUNATELY she did not have the reaction the girl in front of her did, which was to call her mother (on the phone) a *@!*$#@ @#*&% for making her come home, then sit down in the corner of the room and sob... REALLY LOUD, then yell at the customer service lady who was trying to calm her down. When offered a flight to Eugene instead, the girl said, "do you have ANY idea how far Eugene is from Medford?!? Ugggghhhhh."
UNFORTUNATELY she had to stand in line in the hotel lobby for almost two hours. (Yes, I mentioned the line thing twice. It still counts.)
FORTUNATELY the bed in the Crowne Plaza hotel was a king size, and super comfy.
UNFORTUNATELY she could only stay in that bed for about four hours.
FORTUNATELY she found a flight to Redding that arrived by 10:00 the next morning!
UNFORTUNATELY the zipper on her duffel bag broke off!
FORTUNATELY her bag stayed zipped all the way from San Francisco to Redding.
UNFORTUNATELY her dad, Carla, Ellie and Amy were 45 minutes late to pick her up.
FORTUNATELY she was so tired she didn't even care.
UNFORTUNATELY they still had a few errands to run in Redding.
FORTUNATELY they made it home in time for lunch at Grandma's! And played a fun Italian writing game in the car on the way home.
UNFORTUNATELY Grandma's internet was down, which equals no homework done on Saturday...then the power went out at the house in Edgewood.
FORTUNATELY they have a sweet candelabra.
UNFORTUNATELY time with Grandma and Nonni was shortened due to long layovers and canceled flights.
FORTUNATELY she got to see them at least a little!
UNFORTUNATELY her flight out of Medford on Monday was canceled! (She really was baffled that this could happen twice on one trip...)
FORTUNATELY she was booked on an earlier flight out of Medford.
UNFORTUNATELY her earlier flight was delayed to a later time than her original flight.
FORTUNATELY she finally flew out of Medford by 7:45pm.
UNFORTUNATELY there was heavy fog and rain in San Francisco.
FORTUNATELY she talked to a nice lady on the plane for an hour and a half who used to be a typesetter at a magazine in San Francisco called "Undertaker's Retort," then went back to school to be a microbiologist, and now is retired, playing and singing classical music...after she has an extremely interesting surgery on her thumb, which we talked about at length. It made the trip seem shorter.
UNFORTUNATELY because of the rain in San Francisco, they were only using one runway for all flights... so that made her nervous.
FORTUNATELY it didn't affect her flight at all.
UNFORTUNATELY the pilot announced they might be rerouted to Santa Barbara because of the low visibility.
FORTUNATELY they were not rerouted, the sky was clear above the fog, and they landed safely in San Luis Obispo on time. Karen was picked up by her roommate, holding a sign that said "International Businessman." (It's kind of an inside joke, but if you watch How I Met Your Mother, you should get it.)
UNFORTUNATELY she had an early class the next day, and it was already midnight.
FORTUNATELY when she checked her email at home, she found out her class was canceled!
The End

So, you get the picture. It ended on a happy note. My trip was a little stressful, but it was good to see Grandma and go to Nonni's 87th birthday party, and hear an awesome sermon by Pastor Bill, and hang with my sisters and parents. I am really glad life isn't actually based on fortune... but if you're ever bored, you should play "Fortunately Unfortunately."

Thursday, February 19, 2009

"The things of earth will grow strangely dim"

"She stood there until something fell off the shelf inside her.
Then she went inside there to see what it was.
It was her image of Jody tumbled down and shattered.
But looking at it she saw it never was the flesh and blood figure of her dreams.
Just something she had grabbed up to drape her dreams over...
-Zora Neale Hurston, from Their Eyes Were Watching God

I recently read that book, and that quote stuck with me. And made me think...
What am I grabbing up to drape my dreams over...?
People will let me down. Jesus never will.

"Do not put your trust in princes, in mortal men, who cannot save.
Blessed is he[...]whose hope is in the Lord his God[...]
the Lord, who remains faithful
- Psalm 146:3-6

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

My Day in A Sentence

Asleep at 12:30am....wake up at 6:00am....stumble to the bathroom....turn on the light....squint at myself in the mirror....seriously, whose hair does that??....turn on the hot water.....shower, thoroughly enjoying the five minutes of nothingness in the hot water....get dressed....blow dry hair while reading Colossians 4 and part of Psalm 136....wear the most despised pair of pants I own because everything else is dirty, I'm even on my very last pair of underwear....think about how I must go to the laundromat later today, even though I already know I don't want to, and don't have time....catch the 7:11 bus to school....read an assigned text for my 8:00 class....get a small americano at starbucks (one pump of sugar free vanilla and room for cream, please)....arrive at class early....drink coffee....realize I came to class only to watch a movie that isn't on the syllabus....we're not being tested on it....we don't have to write a paper on it....nothing....oh well....I'll do my reading for my English class at 12:00....read for two hours during the movie....walk to the library for my two hour break....take the elevator to the fifth floor....sit down with my laptop....begin working on my annotated bibliography for my linguistics class....see Carla online....get distracted....chat with her....listen to pandora....check facebook....wish I was all over the world like some of my friends....pray for grandma....sad for grandma....wish she wasn't sick like this....thankful I found a cheap flight home for the weekend....get back to my bibliography for a while....my computer battery dies....pack up my stuff.....call my mom....she'll have to call me back.....she doesn't.....call Ellie....talk to her for a while....what time is it??......oh, I have to go to class....get my midterm back.....I did good.....relief.....find out the discussion on the reading I did in my first class is being pushed to Monday.....wonder if everything I do is useless and unnecessary.....discuss some poetry for two hours....catch the bus home....call my mom and talk to her on the ride home....get off the bus at the SLO Senior center...walk home in the sunshine....make taco salad for lunch...eat it while watching an episode of law & order....suddenly wonder why I'm wasting my time watching a rerun of law & order....go upstairs....hesitantly open my bedroom door....it's a mess....the cleaning fairy didn't come....make my bed....resist the urge to lay down on my bed....email my professor.....get everything in order to register for classes tomorrow.....return some personal emails....throw all my clothes into my laundry baskets.....drive downtown.....deposit a check at the bank....a small check....my checks are decreasing in size....it's not a good thing....worry about how I'm going to make it next quarter without working....choose to put that out of my mind....be super nice to the bank lady even though she's obviously having a week of repeat Mondays and is grumpy about it....laugh at the security guard who probably couldn't protect me from a fly....wonder why he has a job as a security guard for a good five minutes....wonder why I'm wondering about that...drive to starbucks....yes again....this time it's a grande americano....return The Secret Life of Bees to Blockbuster....think about how I really should look into Netflix....drive to the laundromat.....talk to a nice homeless man about fried chicken for a few minutes....he thanks me for being nice to him....I feel good about that....open my computer to do homework....write a blog instead.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Singin' in the Rain ... Really?

I love rain. It's been raining here quite a bit lately, so that's good. This morning was especially nice. I could hear the wind howling and the rain pelting my thin window panes. I heard the trees being thrashed around and occasionally making whipping contact with the side of the house. I was cold. I then did one of the most pleasurable things in life. I hit snooze, rolled over, cuddled up and fell back asleep.

I do wonder something, though. Why is it considered romantic to walk in the rain? What's romantic about that? Singing in the rain is a nice idea, but really, I think the enjoyment can only last so long. I mean, you get soaking wet, your hair is stuck to your face, it gets frizzy, your hands are cold, your toes are cold. Even if you have an umbrella, it's a hassle to hold, and if it's windy it blows inside out. I'd much rather walk in the rain if I'm fully equipped, and then only if I have to. I love the rain, but mostly I like listening to it hit the outside of a warm building of which I'm on the protective inside. Preferably while sipping a hot drink and doing something productive. Rain makes me productive. Or, it makes me procrastinate and write blogs about rain.

Back to my paper...

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

I Just Called To Say I Have To Go

I could probably create a separate blog about things my mom does that make me laugh really hard. For now though, I'll just enlighten you with this one thing she's done to me several times in the recent weeks.

My phone rings.
"Yeah, hi mom. What's up?"
"Um, well, can you hang on a second, honey?"
At this point I usually hear something going on in the background. Another phone ringing, JB yelling, Emily or Ellie asking questions as they rush out the door, etc.
"Karen, I'm sorry, I just don't have time to talk right now."
"I promise I'll call you later."
"OK mom, that's fine."

My dad said she called me a few times while they were moving furniture around. She had me on speakerphone, and was yelling across the room that she couldn't talk right then. Do I really need to say it? If you can't talk, why did you call me in the first place, mom??