fate

accept the things to which fate binds you, and love the people with whom fate brings you together, but do so with all your heart.
– marcus aurelius.

i want–so badly–to believe that fate exists.

that there’s some method to the madness. that, when the bad comes, it’s tempered by the future good. that it’ll all be okay, because of some linear plan from a higher power or being or idea.

but i’m not there yet.

in 2011, i graduated from law school with no clear plan of what was coming next. i graduated without a job and took the bar. i passed but it became clear that my dad, who ultimately had 3 major surgeries in 5 months, would need help. i gladly stayed home and helped care for him while applying for jobs. i received rejection letter after rejection letter and very quickly became disheartened. doc review happened while i continued my search for a permanent (or at least non-temp) job. as fate would have it (maybe), i had applied for a fellowship loooong before and was accepted pending placement (meaning: i’d need to find a company that would accept me 40hrs a week with some complications). a cynic, i did not expect anything to come of it. to my dismay, i got a sweet gig with my dream office.

is it fate? had i been accepted at any of the other jobs, i wouldn’t be here, doing something i believe in, so strongly, every day. had any of the other seemingly-million options gone a different way, i wouldn’t have taken this dream job, moved, and had such awesome mentors. all those rejections crushed me. was it fate? was that destruction of my soul necessary such that i could be here today?

had the offices whose rejections then-destroyed me given an offer instead, my life would’ve been very, very different right now. maybe i would’ve been working on something i believe in, maybe i’d just be getting by. who knows? that’s the thing about life–while there are many options, there’s only one route you can go down.

but my fellowship is up in may and i’m thinking about what’s next. i desperately need a job i can believe in. will i find one? i came to believe in love while here. will that work out? will something entirely different–something i am currently unable to identify–present itself and be my next necessary step?

i guess what i’m trying to say is that, because i wouldn’t have predicted this a year ago, maybe fate is a real thing. maybe there’s this life plan held together by a omniscient thing who/that knows what the future holds and what is necessary for my future. i don’t know the answer, but i know i’m afraid. i’m scared of rejection. i’m scared of being sad. i’m scared of the unknown. i’m scared of not being in control of my life.

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2012

wow, what a year.

imagine, if you will, that said in a similar manner to marv merchants:

 

for me, 2012 was an unimaginable year. if you had asked me last december what i thought would come my way this year, i wouldn’t in a million years have suggested anything resembling what this year turned out to be.

so i’m sitting there in june, doing a job i did not much like in colorado.  it paid well, but i was living with my parents, suffering through a benefit-less doc review hell hole, and i was so damn bored (lowlight: i once took a problem to my supervisor and was told that i wasn’t paid to think. FOR REAL). i felt like i was stuck in neutral.  i had applied for a fellowship in 2011, but was starting to worry it wouldn’t pan out and i’d be neutral forever. but then, one wednesday afternoon in late june, i got the email of my dreams, things came together quickly, and i moved to arizona in july for my new adventure! my job has been a million times better than i’d ever expected. i spend all day, every day doing what i love and work i believe in. in addition to learning all kinds of lawyerly things (discovery! deposition techniques! motion practice! dropping em dashes everydamnwhere!), i’ve also learned that if you don’t want to lose someone’s attention, you tell them you do first amendment law rather than campaign finance. my job’s taken me to mississippi, florida, DC, and bunch of random airports in between. to say it’s been a dream come true is an understatement (though not all peaches–protip: don’t move to arizona in july. holy damned hell).

in april i decided to change my life in a big way. i lost 45 pounds and have managed to stay within a 5 pound range for the last 4 months. that’s been fun. i also went from running 0 to running 15 miles a week and back to 0 (oops). hoping to get back to running in 2013.

moreover, i found out that my long-held skepticism (or rather, rejection) of love is dissipating, to say the least. my heart–the organ i thought to exist only to pump blood–actually serves an emotional purpose. turns out, i’m really bad at dealing with my feelings (26 years of shoving feelings down by any means necessary has left me incapable of handling stuff), but that doesn’t mean the feelings are insignificant. wish i could tell yall more, but c’est la vie.

truth be told, i’m afraid of 2013. i’m afraid that after such a spectacular 2012, it’ll be impossible to improve on–or even maintain–and next year will be a letdown. i’m afraid that once my fellowship is over, i’ll go back to a shitty job that leaves me unfulfilled.  i’m afraid that my heart will return to the charcoaly little brick it’s been forever.

so now i’m sitting here on new year’s eve, on my couch, with a glass of malbec and streaming white collar (current addiction) on netflix. there’s nowhere else i’d rather be (that’s a lie, but this is a damn fine runner up). cheers to you all to a happy new year and a wonderful 2013.

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i don’t understand.

there are a lot of things in this world i don’t understand.  currently topping the list is how someone can walk into an elementary school and murder children. i hope there’s a clear answer and an enemy we can all fight. but i know that sometimes the answer is nothing more than evil exists.

i don’t understand how the media can be so irresponsible in their reporting. what happened to fact checking? what happened to responsible journalism? i understand that people have an insatiable thirst for information, but it’s the media’s job to get this right. instead they misidentified the gunman, they got the gunman’s mother’s relationship to the school wrong, they reported that there was a second gunman. i get that the new era of social media doesn’t lend itself to exhaustive fact checking, but this cannot happen.

i don’t understand the people who post and tweet that blog post called “i am [the gunman]‘s mother.” beyond the fact that her other posts are truly terrifying, how can you think it’s necessary–or even acceptable–to share the story of a woman destroying her son’s privacy and branding him as a future mass murderer? it’s humiliating and it’s wrong. mental health does need to be addressed, but not this way. (also, while on the topic of reposting, that morgan freeman quote? isn’t.)

i don’t understand the rush to legislation before we even have the facts. i also don’t understand people who direct others not to talk about it yet, that it’s too soon. people handle things differently. i think we shouldn’t discuss legislation as a direct consequence of this event because we don’t know all the facts yet. however, i’m not sure 30-round clips are necessary, and that position is not reliant on information yet to be gleaned from connecticut.

most of all, i don’t understand how 26 families will handle the holidays this year. 20 beautiful children won’t spend them with their families. 5 educators won’t make it home. and one family–the lanza family–must be facing unimaginable agony for the loss of nancy and for their connection to, and loss of, the gunman. (i suggest susan klebold’s piece for a different perspective.)

but what i do understand? that mass shootings are not growing in frequency. it doesn’t make them any less horrific, but it is worth noting. that, even if violent mental illness wasn’t a cause here, we still need to reform how we treat mental illness. and that starts at home. please stop using crazy as an adjective.

requiem aeternam dona eis, domine
et lux perpetua luceat eis

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monday check-in

totally stolen from ang.

obsessing over: lace skirt i got from jcrew a few months ago. it was the only one there, just happened to fit me perfectly, and was on crazy sale. wear it all the time, still not over it.

working on: gaining confidence in my work. there are some things i’m totally confident about because i know them for a certainty. but the rest of the stuff i work on that i know (certainly competent, just not 100%) suffers from a real confidence problem. it’s not an effective use of resources to understand everything as well as i know a certain southern state’s campaign $ laws, but it’s really frustrating knowing how to straddle the line.

thinking about: the existence of love and whether or not i’ll ever believe in it or experience it (hence the drinking category below).

anticipating: going home thursday! it’ll be a whirlwind trip, but i’m looking forward to it.

listening to: fleetwood mac like it’s going out of style (we’ll just pretend they didn’t go out of style in the 80s).

drinking: that firecracker wine i blogged about yesterday. it’s gross, but i’m not (yet) the type of person to throw alcohol away. maybe someday.

wishing: that i could have productive feelings resulting in a normal relationship instead of the fucked up reality that is my life.

added category:
hating: that i can’t afford all the things i want. also that there is so much i want when i have so much to begin with.

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target is awesome

look what i found!

i probably won’t drink it, seeing as how i don’t really like blends, but i felt obligated to buy my namesake wine.

name aside, the design of the bottle is great. you can’t minimize the importance of a well-designed bottle. with so many wine choices available, a lot of times i’ll try something new based in part on the look of the bottle. i do the same thing with books. that old adage “you can’t judge a book by its cover” isn’t always true. you need something to draw you in.

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bourbon makes me exclamation pointy

yesterday’s results do not come as a surprise to me. i suppose that’s not entirely truthful–i did not expect we’d have the results last night. but i did expect that president obama would be reelected. when your best candidate is as thrilling as lukewarm chicken broth, you can’t honestly expect a win, can you? combine mr. bland with an improving economy (albeit at the rate cold molasses flows), a genuinely likable opponent, and visible members of your party who are hellbent on being as stupid as fucking possible, you can’t honestly expect any other result, can you? hope, yes; expect, no.

am i disappointed? yes, but that comes with the territory of being a libertarian.

i’m also hopeful. gay marriage ballot initiatives passed in four states yesterday! equal rights should not be offered to the public for a vote, but here we are. marijuana was legalized in two states yesterday! hopefully we can honestly address the calamity that is the war on drugs. our immigration system in this country is fucked up beyond words. maybe the president will stop treating it like a political third rail (like every other politician ever) and actually reform it. these are all things that can be fixed if we stop with the party idolatry, if we go beyond our parties and address problems this country’s “leadership” is trying to ignore. there are other problems that need to be addressed, namely the massive unfunded liabilities that are about to crush us fiscally, but i don’t really see a bipartisan way to fix that and doubt we’ll address it until it actually does crush us.

but! republicans! my once (and maybe future (but probably not)) party! i have a fail-safe solution for you! i call it the GINGER PLAN OF AWESOME. follow it and you won’t colossally embarrass yourselves in 2016! follow it and find that all of your problems will disappear! (or transform into different ones, but that’s beside the point.) follow it and be as awesome as me!

step 1! stop defending the indefensible. stop with the automatic defense of complete fucktards just because they have an (R) next to their names. if they say something stupid, shame and abandon them. 

step 2! for fuck’s sake, it’s time for a seachange on social issues. when you say you want smaller government, behave as though you do. don’t impose your beliefs on others. don’t talk about federalism one minute and then decry a gay marriage initiative the next. remember that distinction between positive and negative rights? return to it.

step 3! embrace change. i’m not talking about diversity for the sake of diversity, but the groupthink that has entrenched the RNC is crippling the party. listen to someone other than karl rove. nikki haley has some great stuff to say. so does condi. listen to them.

step 4! develop new talent. no more bushes, no more candidates who lost the primary in the previous cycle (i swear to all that is holy that if santorum is the 2016 candidate i will donate every free penny i have to the democrats). there are some pretty cool republicans out there who view the world through a different prism–find them. more huntsman, less perry.

step 5! stop with the blame. a mark of maturity is accepting responsibility for your actions. this isn’t because of that gol’ darned liberal media. if you think you have a media problem, then improve your media strategy. this isn’t because of the 1,139,562 people who voted for gary johnson (as of 7:37pm MST wednesday) (i am the 1%!). this is because you lost the game.

step 6! me!

 

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this week

i used to love politics. it was a simpler time in my life: there was a right and a wrong and i voted for the guys who were right most of the time, even if i had a few misgivings. and now? i’ve evolved. i hate the current state of politics, i hate both parties, i hate all of it.

tuesday i’m voting for gary johnson. it’s not a protest vote. it’s not a wasted vote. rather, it’s a vote i believe in. why?

  • i want a smaller government: diminish entitlement programs and lessen defense spending.
  • i believe in civil liberties: personal freedom and privacy are glorious things; drone strikes on american citizens are obscene. 
  • i believe in equality: if the government is going to recognize marriage (which i don’t believe they should, but that’s a post for another time), they must recognize it equally. i don’t like referring to “gay marriage” as though it’s something different. marriage is marriage. also? DOMA is the biggest piece of unconstitutional garbage on our books right now.
  • i believe in free choice, not coercion.

gary johnson clearly isn’t going to win on tuesday (i think president obama will). so why, in the words of nick gillespie, am i voting for him, “knowing that he’s a bigger lost cause than the chicago cubs winning the world series, the gilmore girls movie getting made, and the release of dr. dre’s detox put together”? because i want to send a message to the parties that they need to make some fundamental changes. because i want to be able to look myself in the mirror wednesday morning. because i want to live free.

gary johnson 2012.

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