Search

www.contessabessa.com

Category

Lists

Three Hundred Sixty Six.

I know what you’re thinking.

Nope. I still don’t have any answers. And I still don’t feel like a grown up. Maybe slightly closer, but I still don’t even want to have to take care of a houseplant.

SIDENOTE: Somehow I manage to keep my dogs alive and happy. I don’t know how that works. Life Math is weird.

…Maybe I’m just not a green thumb.

Anyway.

My BFF Jo texted me yesterday and said, “It’s your last day as a 26 year old.”

At first I kind of panicked. Holy shitballs. 26. It’s over. I feel like it just started. I know it sounds like a super cliche, but in some ways, it really was like the blink of an eye.

I started this blog a year ago as a challenge to myself as a writer. Early in 2012, I kind of lost faith in myself. I hit a major rough patch and thought wow, maybe I’m actually a terrible writer. Maybe I have no idea what I’m doing. Maybe I don’t want to ever write again. Of course, I eventually came around and realized that writing is the thing I love the most. And in the same vein, I knew that if I wanted to be a writer, I’d have to write.

But I was kind of scared.

So I promised myself I would write something every day.

I wasn’t really expecting that forcing myself to write a blog post every day – a story that somehow led to me learning a life lesson, no matter how small – would help me be happy. I saw it as much more of an exercise than anything else. And an opportunity to maybe be funny. But I have to say, writing this blog has given me a completely different outlook on my entire life. It’s helped me understand how my past has made me who I am. It’s helped me work through a lot of difficult times and put a positive spin on things I would have never otherwise laughed at. It’s helped me approach life in a much more open, accepting way.

Like, happen to me, life: I’m ready to learn from you.

That was a disaster. Oh well, next time will be better!

I can’t believe that just happened. I am mortified. Also, that was hilarious. I can’t wait to tell people.

I did it! Someone pat me on the fucking back!

I hate everything right now. Surely someone will understand.

I am hurting. I need to know it’s going to be okay.

This is weird. Does everyone feel this way?

Did that just happen? SRSLY?!

At the same time, I had come to a bit of a crossroads with myself. I had hit a self-love low. I was feeling depressed, defeated, discouraged, you name it. I decided enough was enough: it was time to make the active decision to be happy.

I also discovered that Jayne Mansfield had stretchmarks. And my world was turned upside down. In a good way.

To quote myself (is that totally pretentious? I’m trying to recap, shut up.):

Jayne Mansfield, the American actress, singer, Playboy playmate, and all around drop-dead gorgeous bombshell, was flawed in a way that has been the root of much of my self-consciousness for all of my teenage and adult life.

So…all of that got me here.

SIDENOTE: It’s really hard writing the last post of a 365-day blog.

It’s going to be difficult to let this blog go. I know I’m going to wake up tomorrow and the day after that and the day after that and my first thought is going to be, “What can I write about today?” or, “Oh shit! I still have to blog today!”

But I’m looking forward to channelling my creative energy into a number of other projects that I’ve already either started or am about to. So I guess what I’m saying is I’m not going anywhere. Maybe there will be another blog. Maybe not. But I promise there will be something.

I was trying to think of a fun way to commemorate the end of this blog.

Here’s what I came up with.

Jayne Mansfield had stretchmarks.

jayne

And so do I.

Image2

xA

P.S. It’s hilariously ironic that in the majority of the pin-up photos I took, my stretchmarks aren’t that visible. Because they’re everywhere.

But I guess there’s a life lesson in that, isn’t there?

I’m probably the only one who really notices them.

Image7_2

P.P.S. Things I meant to write but forgot: Happy Birthday to me! Also, here’s to 27! I’m crazy excited for it!

Advertisements

Three Hundred Sixty Five.

I know this is a 365-day blog, but this is technically the penultimate post, because it’s a birthday to birthday thing. And tomorrow’s my birthday!

600px-US_27.svg

SIDENOTE: Have you bought me a birthday present yet? We can’t be friends if you didn’t because all I care about is material possessions.

Anyway, I thought what better way to spend the second-last day of my crazy year-long blog than looking back on some of its best moments?

SIDENOTE: Maybe that should say best/”best”…

Think of this, if you will, as a flashback episode of your favourite TV sitcom. With the help of a couple friends, I’ve compiled some categories I think you’ll enjoy.

Without further ado…

Top 5 Stupid Kid Moments

photo(1)

Oh boy. Where to even start with this one?! Well, okay…

1. Pressing buttons was (OKAY, STILL IS) a thing I loved doing. See examples A and B.

2. Of course, there was the time I electrocuted myself

3. The day I put scissors through my finger

4. Setting fire to things is never a good idea.

5. Neither is writing a hate letter to your childhood friend.

HONOURABLE MENTIONS:

I have to give honourable mention to the day I learned that “bastard” is a bad word. Oh, and also to the combination of shaving off my eyebrows and getting hair extensions.

And guess what?! It’s your lucky day. I found a photo of teenage Andrea with hair extensions and no eyebrows. And apparently I have no shame because I’m gonna post it on the Internet.

Extensions

Boy oh boy oh boy.

Moving on!

Top 5 Most Awkward Moments

If you haven’t deduced by now, I am the QUEEN OF AWKWARD. This is quite the random assortment, but I feel it encompasses who I am pretty well…

1. The day a goat ate my t-shirt. (Enough said.) (Stupid goats.) (Seriously, why would she do that to me?!) (Ugh.) (I fucking loved that t-shirt.) (SOB.)

2. The day I learned about orgasms in sex ed. (Is anyone else craving cake?!)

3. Barrel-chested. That is all.

4. The day the National Poet of Scotland called me stupid. Which I really should add to my resume.

5. My elementary school “boobies” moment.

HONOURABLE MENTIONS:

There are so, so many, but I feel like my Pilates FAIL and my Zumba BARF moments were pretty grand.

Top 5 “SRSLY?!” Moments

You know those moments. The ones that make you go, “what the fucking?!”

1. People and my tattoos. Why are people so weird about my tattoos?

2. That time a guy threw a book at my face. No big deal.

3. NO I DON’T WANT TO TAN.

4. Nothing says “what the fuck?” like getting pepper sprayed!

5. Also charming: when people tell you how to pronounce your own name

HONOURABLE MENTIONS:

I have to give myself a shout out for fucking up my neck by making fun of someone on a Zumba DVD. Because who the fuck does that? This girl, right here.

But the greatest honourable mention in this category goes to Glasgow, Scotland, where I experienced so many WTF things, including…

Finding a tooth in an ATM.

Finding a used tampon on a bus.

And buses in general.

Among so many others. I fucking love you, Glasgow. I really do.

Top 5 Workplace Blunders

It’s a wonder I still have my job. It really is. It’s also a wonder I still have any self-confidence after all of the stupid humbling things that have happened to me at work…

1. My friends still bring up the day I parked on the sidewalk.

2. Also charming: locking yourself in a stairwell on your first day of work.

3. Or, you know, getting caught dancing in the bathroom.

4. Similarly, walking in on your coworkers in the bathroom.

5. Or traumatizing them with your hair colour.

BONUS PHOTO:

Getting caught taking a selfie at work.

Work selfie

At least I know my office mate loves me and doesn’t judge me.

Top 5 Relationship/Sex Fails

Look. I’d prefer we don’t dwell on how much I suck at relationships, okay? OKAY?!

1. I have been known to throw myself at guys I like.

2. I’ve learned the hard way that spin the bottle will only break your heart.

3. So will going after guys who don’t care that you exist. (But you can keep trying to shout “LOVE ME! LOOOOOVE MEEEE!” at them. Trust me. Guys SUPER love that.)

4. I’m good at ending up in awkward sex situations.

5. And awkward kissing situations, sometimes.

HONOURABLE MENTIONS AND A BONUS PHOTO:

Okay, well, first of all, heartbreak, right?

I think I also screwed it up with this guy, because he was clearly paying me a compliment.

Let’s not forget all of my failed marriages. Sigh.

And the time a MONSTER RASH ruined my potential Scottish boyfriend.

And hey, since I’ve already shown you how great I looked with hair extensions as an eyebrowless wonder, here’s a photo of me in the midst of the MONSTER RASH attack. This was after I managed to get my eyes open, because they were swollen shut.

Photo 130

Good lord…

Top 5 Accomplishments

I didn’t screw up everything, though. I’ve done some stuff. Yeah. I do things! I TCB every once in a while!

1. I’ve gotten over a lot of fear to become a Zumba instructor.

2. Then I stuck with it for a year and changed my life.

3. I grew back my eyebrows, guys. I fucking did it!

4. I got over some serious “I can’t!” bullshit and also tried wall climbing.

5. Oh, hey, I also learned how to embrace myself sometimes. I think that’s pretty huge.

HONOURABLE MENTION:

I BLOGGED EVERY SINGLE DAY FOR 365 FUCKING DAYS.

A year, guys. A YEAR.

I’m excited to celebrate my birthday with you all tomorrow.

xA

P.S. I know what you’re thinking. There totally should have been some sort of crazy travel category. But I just couldn’t narrow that shit down. So you’ll just have to re-read my entire blog to enjoy.

Three Hundred Fifty Three.

While it can be a lot of fun to embrace the many things in life that you may suck at – like this, or this – there is something else we often have to do in life. And if we don’t do it, we really should. And we should do it often.

SIDENOTE: But first, I thought of another thing I suck at. I suck at bringing shit back from my car. Like if I take a travel mug of something with me somewhere, it’s never leaving my vehicle again. There’s an empty one sitting in my car right now that I can’t stop thinking about. Will I remember to bring it in later? Oh, probably not.

It’s very easy to get caught up in what’s “wrong” with you. Maybe you’re in a relationship and it’s not going how you want it to. Maybe you’re stuck in a job you hate. Maybe you’re just not where you thought you’d be in life yet. You start to dwell on things like, “I’m not pretty enough,” or, “I’m not good enough,” or, “I’m going nowhere.”

List 2

That’s when you need to step back and be kind to yourself.

It might sound like a total cliche, but I have to say, if I have learned anything in the last six months or so, it is that a little self-love can go a long way.

I know I get too caught up in my head about things. And I know that I let my insecurities eat away at myself. I blame myself for a lot of things that have absolutely nothing to do with me, or things that are completely out of my control.

One good thing about being a Libra, though, is that I am usually able to remove myself from my head and balance my insecurity out with logic and realism.

List 1

Unfortunately, that doesn’t mean I stay in that positive headspace for long. Some days are better than others. But I think we all have that problem.

List 3

The most important thing is that you keep reminding yourself. Maybe you look in the mirror and talk to yourself. Maybe like me, you keep a notepad in your iPhone that you add to when you’re feeling the worst about yourself. Whatever it is, do it, and do it often, and don’t just do it, believe it.

Lesson learned: You are awesome. You are doing great. Keep dreaming. Keep fighting. Keep going for it. You’re going to get there.

xA

Three Hundred Fifty One.

Guys, I’ve had a cold for a WEEK and it’s making me totally stupid.

You know when your head is all plugged and your ears get all plugged so you can’t hear and then you start coughing and every time you cough you let out a little whimper of self pity?

THAT.

You know what else it’s done? It’s made me so whiny. How irritating. I’m not usually like this. So it’s more like cough, whimper of self pity, grunt of, “Get it together, Beça.”

Um, anyway, I’ve decided to do a follow-up to this post, because I thought of more things.

MORE THINGS I SUCK AT by Andrea Beça

Making Minor Decisions

558346_411882395579790_2119587365_n

When it comes to minor decisions, I could not be more of a Libra.

Hilariously, I’m pretty good at major decisions, because I’m good at sitting down, weighing out the options, and really considering what I want. I mean when you think about it, I’ve made some pretty major decisions in life, like moving to the other side of the world, say.

But ask me what I want for dinner or where I’d prefer to sit at an event and I could flounder for ages. In some cases, it’s just because I’m generally a chill person and I don’t mind either way. In other cases, it’s because I CAN’T DECIDE AND I DRIVE MYSELF CRAZY.

Folding Shirts

How-to-Fold-Clothes-That-Look-Crisp-and-Pressed

One word: NOPE.

I used to try. Now I just do it my way, and you know what? That’s just fine!

Speaking of which…

Folding Clothes and/or Putting Clothes Away

UnpackingIf I don’t do it RIGHT AWAY, it will NEVER HAPPEN.

Like, when I moved in with my friend once, I packed, moved, and unpacked all in a single day. I was up until almost 4am because I needed to get it all done. ALL OF IT. Then I was able to sleep.

On the flip side, I’ve gotten back from trips and lived out of my suitcase for weeks just because I didn’t feel like unpacking. Oops.

Telling People Off

original

I’m super nice. Way too nice sometimes. Sometimes (see: always) I do this thing where someone will say something really offensive or rude or just that I don’t agree with and instead of speaking up, I laugh. Kind of like when the dude at the casino implied that I was a purchase-able sex object.

It’s probably why I’ve had a stalker before. I suck at just saying, “FUCK OFF.”

SIDENOTE: Totally not going to blog about that.

Letting Things Be

Screen shot 2013-10-02 at 11.09.32

SIDENOTE: It’s a sleeping dog. Get it?

Like, say you crack a joke and someone sort of takes it the wrong way and then everyone sort of laughs it off. I can’t laugh it off. If I feel like I’ve offended you, I will not be able to not get in touch and say, “Hey, I’m sorry – that’s not what I meant.”

Or if I feel like I don’t fully understand what someone means or why they would say something they said, I always feel like I need to clarify. Especially when hurt feelings are involved.

Or like today, when I got a rejection email about a short story I submitted to something and the person said, “It’s beautiful, but it has no plot.” I just want to shout IT’S NOT ALWAYS ABOUT PLOT. SOMETIMES IT’S ABOUT PEOPLE.

Let it go, let it go, let it go.

I suck at that.

So I guess the lesson learned here is that SURPRISE! In the six months since writing version 1, I did not get perfect. Darn.

Good thing I have a prize-winning smile or no one would ever put up with me.

xA

P.S.

HEY YOU CHECK IT OUT.

Remember how I said I suck at technology? Yeah, that hasn’t changed. I just figured out I can make polls on my blog. So let’s have fun. Here’s a question. If you read my blog, vote! And do it soon, because there are only 15 more days of posts. (Holy shit!)

(Hint: it’s an aesthetic thing. I’m not going to need therapy or anything. I hope.)

Three Hundred Twenty Eight.

Remember my post about Life Math and punctuality?

Let’s keep going with that for a second…

OTHER TYPES OF LIFE MATH I DON’T GET

SIDENOTE: Am still struggling with punctuality a lot of days, but have realized it’s mostly my dogs’ fault. (I know, what an excuse, but seriously.)

1. Toothpaste vs. Foam

Look, I know that some people are able to like, brush their teeth while they walk around the house and get ready for the day. (My BFF Mags does it and it totally confounds me.) But I am not one of those people. I don’t understand how my pea-sized dab of toothpaste always becomes FOAM EVERYWHERE. All over. Everywhere. Like this, which I’m sure you’ve all seen, but I love it anyway:

BFf5pJnCMAAlGBt

It just doesn’t add up!

2. Dogs vs. Bed

My dogs are small dogs. They’re not teacup dogs, but they’re small. And while I may not have a giant, hotel-style king-sized bed (I FUCKING WISH), I do have a nice, normal queen-sized bed. So how, how, HOW is it that when my two small dogs get into bed with me, I have NO ROOM?

on_bed_1024_263614k

Even that guy looks like he has more sleeping space than I get when Oscar and Lucy are in bed with me.

Maybe it’s because they sleep horizontally or wherever the fuck they please, while I’m left trying to push them out of the way for a tiny sliver of mattress space…

SIDENOTE: As I was writing this blog post, I looked up and caught my dogs hanging out like this:

Screen shot 2013-09-09 at 10.25.45

AHHHHHHH! Heart exploded.

3. Tears vs. Water

This is sort of like the feeding a baby vs. the amount they vomit question. As I’m sure you may have gathered from some of my posts a few weeks ago, I’ve been doing a bit of crying. Specifically, I’d say I cried a LOT over the course of say, two to three days.

And then I was dehydrated for like, a week and a half.

No, seriously.

I couldn’t stop drinking water. My mouth was dry, my throat was sticking. It was like being stuck in a weird stereotypical movie about someone stranded in the desert. I felt like I was full of sand and I couldn’t get enough hydration. Surely I didn’t cry that much. So what the fuck, body?

Lesson learned: I’ll never get an ‘A’ in Life Math. (Or any math after like, grade six math, based on past experience…)

What are your biggest Life Math struggles/puzzles?

xA

Three Hundred Twenty Six.

If I named my blog posts, rather than simply using numbers, this post would have a long, two-part title, and it would be:

WHAT NOT TO DO WITH YOUR LIFE WHEN YOU’RE HAVING A BAD DAY, OR HOW TO BE A HOT, HOT MESS OF A HUMAN BEING.

It just so happens I’m an expert in this subject.

Where to even start?

1. ADD UP YOUR DEBT

When you’re feeling insecure and/or awful about life, definitely don’t go through and “re-evaluate” how much money you owe the world. Because if it’s a lot, like me – YAY MASTER’S DEGREE IN A FOREIGN COUNTRY! – it will just make you want to die a little bit.

will

I mean, just FYI.

2. GO ANYWHERE NEAR CANDY

Okay, maybe candy isn’t your thing (it’s my thing). Maybe you like chips, or french fries, or chicken wings, or whatever. Regardless. When you’re feeling shitty, definitely don’t go out and buy a bunch of whatever you feel like you desperately need to shove in your face to make yourself feel better.

Because it might work temporarily.

bean eat

But then you’ll get a ju jube tummy ache.

3. THINK ABOUT HOW YOUR BIRTHDAY IS COMING UP

Because, you know, you may find yourself making a list of ways you’ve gotten nowhere in a year, even when that’s not true.

Or you may just generally stress about getting older.

Or maybe about getting older and being broke.

Ready to party

Plus you may stress about throwing a party and no one showing up.

SIDENOTE: That worry should vanish after you turn like, 25. But it just gets worse, doesn’t it? Because at least when you were a kid, you knew people would show up for the treat bags.

4. GO TO YOUR EX (OR EXES) FOR COMFORT

Pretty self-explanatory. And – you would think – logical. I mean, the results of contacting an ex and being like this:

Feelingscan go a couple ways.

(A) He can attempt to listen and you can insecurely talk at him until he probably hates you (maybe even more than before, depending on your past and how you broke up). (Maybe he liked you before but he’ll discover a hate for you!)

(B) He can attempt to “listen”……and then offer you some comfort sex.

Wait..what the fuck? Argh. Because that gives you MORE FEELINGS to deal with. What a drag.

5. GO SHOPPING

Because “retail therapy” when you’re feeling sad and awful feels like this, no matter what you’re putting on and how well it fits you:

Cathy+Swimsuit+Cartoon

So yeah. Don’t do any of those things. They’ll all make it worse. I learned the hard way for you. You’re welcome!

xA

P.S. Dear anyone worrying about me after reading this: I’m actually fine. Thank you!

Two Hundred Seventy.

The other day (like a month or two ago), I was watching that episode of New Girl where everyone “outs” everyone else’s “pogos.”

Not sure what a pogo is?

So basically, it’s that annoying thing (or those annoying things) you always do that your roommates talk about behind your back.

It got me thinking – what are my pogos?

Home Hobo

I am a huge fan of comfort when I’m home. So basically, unless I’m about to leave the house again in a short period of time, whatever I’m wearing is coming off and my yoga pants are going on. Sometimes, in fairness to myself, I do this to prevent wrinkling and/or stretching out whatever I am wearing when I sit cross-legged on my couch. Because that’s how I almost always sit on my couch.

So, when I’m home, I tend to look like a bit of a hobo…a comfortable, spandex-ish-clad hobo.

Look, if I lived by myself, I probably wouldn’t even bother with pants, so you’re welcome.

Sing-y Susan

SIDENOTE: I don’t know why I felt compelled to give each of my pogos a “clever” name, but I started and I’m not backing down, so you’re going to have to deal with it now.

For a girl who hates musicals as much as I do, this may be shocking, but I do have a tendency to sing my way through my day. Whether I’m belting out a song I can’t get out of my head or simply making up songs to go along with whatever I’m doing, it’s happening.

For example, while I am making snacks, I may start singing something like this:

(Sung to the tune of the Spider-Man theme song)

Makin’ snacks! Makin’ snacks!

They’re delicious, they won’t bite back!

Are they healthy? Listen, friend.

Beça’s snacks are the living end.

Look out! Andrea’s makin’ snaaaacks.

….What can I say? I’d apologize, but it’s fun.

Dancing Queen

As a Zumba instructor, I am constantly either learning or creating new choreography to use in my classes. So that means that I am often practicing it. And by often, I mean often. And while I’m practicing, I’m usually either singing or listening to the song. So you might hear the same song like, I don’t know, 10 or 15 times in a row.

Movie Madwoman

Speaking of hearing things over and over again, I also have a tendency to latch onto a few favourite movies and put them on in the background while I’m living my life. And sometimes I will play the same one more than once in a day.

SIDENOTE: God, now that I’m listing these off, I feel really annoying.

Crazy Dog Lady

I talk to my dogs. Sometimes I talk to them in weird voices and each of them gets their own weird voice. I’m going to try not to delve into that one too far because I still have limits on how much of myself you really get to read about.

Lesson learned: IT COULD BE WORSE. I think I’m a pretty bearable person to live with. I could be messy or have bad personal hygiene or something. But I’m pretty organized and I always smell good, I swear!

What are your pogos? Sharing time!

xA

Two Hundred Forty Two.

Let me tell you about some of the lists I have, on my phone and in notebooks.

Artists

I have grocery lists (obviously).

I have lists of books I have lent out with the names of the people I lent them to.

I have lists of random codes I need (combination lock for the gym, lock for the community hall I teach at, etc.)

I have lists of story ideas.

I have lists of artists whose work I enjoyed and wanted to look further into (above).

I have lists of license plate numbers from two separate incidents (almost three years apart from one another) I had to report to the police.

I have lists of “characters” I see in my day to day life, A.K.A. people who will get written into something in the future.

I have lists of topics I need to research to match up with my story ideas.

I have “To Do” lists on both macro and micro scales (“go to the dentist eventually,” vs. “send that email”).

I have lists of random account numbers and passwords for things/places I don’t use often enough to remember.

I have lists of topic ideas for this blog.

I have lists of things I worry about.

I have a list I call my “NOTE TO SELF” list, of stupid shit I keep doing that makes me sad/ill/generally unhappy, to remind myself to stop doing it.

I have lists of goals, both long-term and short-term.

I have lists of what I need to do in order to reach those goals.

I have lists of story ideas I should pitch to certain blogs I frequent, like xojane, but haven’t yet pitched because I’m scared of rejection.

I have packing lists from past trips I’ve taken, because I always forget something obvious like pyjamas or my glasses.

I have lists of books and movies people have recommended.

I have lists of journals and publications I can submit my writing to.

I could go on and on, but I feel like this list is long enough.

Lesson learned: Lists make my world go ’round.

I write them when I’m too excited to remember things. I write them when I’m too busy to keep track. I write them when I’m worried and need to get my feelings off my chest. I write them when I’m stressed and need to calm myself down by figuring my shit out. I write them because sometimes I’m forgetful. I write them because it’s what I do.

Do you?

xA

Blog at WordPress.com.

Up ↑