Search

www.contessabessa.com

Category

Love

Three Hundred Forty.

Since my birthday is coming up really soon, I started thinking back to birthday memories and remembered this little gem.

The Big 2-1.

I don’t know why it was “The Big 2-1,” because it’s not like 21 signifies anything in Canada. The drinking age is 18. But I don’t know, it still felt like a big deal.

Anyway, the plan was food, bowling (I love bowling – there’s a chance I may make anyone celebrating The Big 2-7 with me go bowling again), and then a party at my BFF Mandelle’s apartment.

That wasn’t really relevant. Either way, now you know a little bit about my 21st birthday. You’re welcome.

The thing you need to know is that when I walked into Mandelle’s apartment on my 21st birthday, I saw this:

n869930369_1494679_1578

Yes. It’s a Birthday Tree.

Let me just zoom in on the angel for a second…

128_8095905589_3910_n

Yes. That’s me. Dressed in a sailor hat.

Just days before my birthday party was my actual birthday, during which I hung out with Mandelle and her roommate and tried on a variety of costume pieces and took a variety of photos while we drank a lot of vodka.

And then she made me into a birthday angel.

I would go on to become the Halloween angel, and then the Christmas angel, for a few years in a row.

Lesson learned: I am an angel.

I mean…I have the greatest friends.

Yeah, that.

n869930369_1494683_4975

xA

Advertisements

Three Hundred Thirty Eight.

In the sixth grade, we had a class pet.

He was the only class pet I’ve ever had. I guess class pets weren’t a very big thing at my school.

Our class pet was a small white snake named Elmo.

He looked sort of like this:

00096bb163c3096ee5bc05

Why he was named Elmo is beyond me. I don’t remember who named him, but I think whoever it was needed to be reminded that we were in the SIXTH GRADE and therefore all very big, mature kids who would definitely not watch Sesame Street.

SIDENOTE: Meanwhile, at almost 27, I was totally quoting Sesame Street at a friend yesterday. And the friend was not a toddler.

I love snakes and reptiles and amphibians. I think they’re beautiful and interesting. Growing up, I had pet newts (can’t believe I haven’t mentioned that until now!) and I adored them all. So I definitely wasn’t afraid of Elmo himself, but I definitely was afraid of feeding him.

Elmo ate pinkies.

AKA baby mice.

10340baby_mice

Have I mentioned that I love mice, too? I think they’re the cutest. (Look at them! They’re like little adorable aliens! Then they get hair and they’re even CUTER.) Also, they’re living things, and I’m not big on eating those.

At first, Elmo ate frozen pinkies.

SIDENOTE: I feel queasy just writing about this.

They were like little mouse ice cubes. My sixth grade teacher – who was, by the way, a vegetarian (she loved chocolate cake) – was adamant that I take part in the feeding process, even though I didn’t want to watch Elmo eat.

“It’s the food chain, Andrea. It’s the cycle of life.”

So I would stand by and watch Elmo eat the micecubes.*

It wasn’t horrible. It was neat watching him unhinge his jaw. The mouse didn’t like, try to run away or anything. I could cope.

Fine.

I think my teacher felt like she had “gotten through to me” or whatever.

But one day, they were out of frozen pinkies.

CUT TO: Grown-up Andrea shouting, “Oh hell no!”

I sat at my desk during feeding time, but once again, my teacher insisted I get involved.

“It’s the food chain, Andrea. It’s the cycle of life.”

Despite my protesting, she shoved me to the front of the class to watch Elmo eat the live pinkie.

It couldn’t really run away from him. I mean, it hadn’t even opened its eyes yet. But that didn’t stop it from crying and squeaking and squirming all the way down. It was still moving around when it reached Elmo’s…abdomen? (I dunno, snakes are one long body, what do you want me to say?)

So that was basically one of the worst moments ever.

It was the day I learned:

(A) I will never have a pet snake.

(B) I will always be a vegetarian.

(C) My sixth grade teacher was kind of a jerk.

(D) I’m cool with not being exposed to the food chain.

(E) I love mice, even when they look like aliens.

Among many other things.

xA

P.S. Also the reason I never got a gecko. No live crickets for this girl.

P.P.S. Elmo eventually escaped his tank. He wasn’t found until like, a year later, when the janitor found him dead in the gymnasium’s storage room, wrapped up in the parachute. Yay.

*”Micecubes” TM Andrea Beça.

Three Hundred Thirty One.

Let me tell you about a family outing I went on when I was 6-7 years old.

I can place my age fairly well because my paternal grandparents were with my brother, my parents, and I, and I only spent time with them once as a child because they lived far away in Portugal.

We were all out at a park, taking a lovely stroll on a warm day, when I saw them:

cattails-in-lake-murray-iris-greenwell

Cattails. Whoa.

Now, I can’t say that I remember the first time I ever saw cattails, but I guess I always liked them, because I distinctly remember that my first feeling upon seeing them during this particular family outing was, “I WANT THEM BECAUSE I LOVE THEM.”

So I asked my brother, Bryan, to pick me a cattail.

I don’t know why I asked my brother to get me one, because I was a pretty bold, self-sufficient kid. Typically, it was my brother asking me to do things he was afraid to do, like climb the kitchen counters to reach cookies or ask my mom for candy when he worried she would say no.

SIDENOTE: We Beça kids loved the snacks. We Beça kids still love the snacks.

Anyway. Maybe I thought the cattails looked too big for me to pick, so I needed my super cool older brother to use his mature kid-muscles to pick one for me. He was, after all, as spry and skilled in my eyes as The Karate Kid, and he did a killer impression of The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. Plus he knew all sorts of stuff about superheros. All I knew at that point was that I liked Storm’s outfit.

But I digress. Bottom line is I asked Bryan to get me a cattail, and Bryan complied.

What Bryan didn’t realize, though, is that while the cattails looked like they were rooted in mossy earth, they were actually rooted (can you call it that?) in a green swamp.

He took one step forward to grab hold of a cattail and he sank right into said swamp.

Oh shit.

My grandpa grabbed a quick hold of his arm and dragged him out of the mud, which had suctioned itself all around his leg. In my memory, you could hear the “SLUUUURP” as he was freed from a fate so terrifying it might as well have been the quick sand from Indiana Jones.

SIDENOTE:

And then he was immediately rushed to the park’s public bathroom to wash off his leg and sneaker (which I’m sure was never the same again).

Poor kid. He was not impressed.

And neither was I, because I never got my damn cattail.

So that was the day my brother learned to maybe toss a stone or something to test the depths before trying to pick anything out of a marshy-looking area.

Oh wait, this blog is about my life lessons.

That was the day I learned I have the best brother in the world.

He’s always got my back. Even when I’m being a little shit.

Screen shot 2013-09-11 at 23.35.17

Plus, I mean, I wasn’t joking about him being cool. Just look at him.

Screen shot 2013-09-11 at 23.35.56

SIDENOTE: I have clearly lost my touch for the sassy over-the-shoulder pose, because I can’t pull it off today to save my life.

xA

P.S. Genuine LOL.

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!

Three Hundred Nineteen.

This is going to be scattered because I feel scattered.

On Thursday, AKA The Longest Day at Work Ever That Made Me Partially Insane, I was sitting in my office, having a chat with my 19-year-old coworker, who is about to start another year of his undergrad degree.

I wish I could tell you the exact context of our conversation, but I think I blocked it all out after he said something along these lines:

“I’m just going to finish my degree and get a job and then I’ll pay off all my debt quickly and be fine.”

And I looked over at him, stunned into silence, and then I said:

“And what is totally crazy is that in your world, that’s a totally realistic hope. Because when you finish your degree, you’ll have jobs to choose from.”

“Right, I guess it’s different in the arts.” he replied.

I wasn’t even sure what to say.

“There are jobs you can choose from,” he joked, “Like retail jobs, or you could be a bartender…or a server…”

I let out a sharp, short laugh. It had the same emotion behind it as the “WOW.” in this post, even though I know that my coworker was just razzing me. My office mate instinctively started moving toward me, wheeling his chair up to mine.

“I have a master’s degree. I HAVE A MASTER’S DEGREE, guys.”

And then my office mate hugged me and I wanted to die.

Sometimes working at my science job is like:

Adult

And it makes me feel like this:

But then maybe one person tells me they read something I wrote and it moved them, or they say something crazy like, “You should write books!” or they tell me I’m funny and I should act in things.

Or I read quotes like the ones in this article, or I read the lessons presented by the brilliant Kevin Spacey in this article.

And I just think, you know what? You really do have to make your opportunities. It’s time to stop being scared. Or rather, to stop letting the fear keep me back. It’s time to embrace it, harness it, and let it be the thing that pushes me forward. Because when you’re scared and you start running, you can’t really stop, can you?

(You can’t because the monster will get you.)

kristen-wiig-quote

Run. Run. Run

Just be you.

tina-fey-quoteAnother thing I need to do: be okay with asking for help along the way.

Here goes nothing.

Help.

xA

Three Hundred Seventeen.

Siri totally freaks me out. The idea of robots totally freaks me out because I feel like they may take over the world one day soon.

So naturally, when I got an iPhone 5…

IMG_4401

IMG_4402

IMG_4403

Sigh. I’m gonna be single FOREVER.

At least he didn’t just default to giving me UK football scores, which is what he did when I was trying to locate a Booster Juice in my vicinity.

Lesson Learned: I am amused way too easily.

(Be glad I’m only showing you three pages of our chat. On one particular day. I can’t get enough of this shit. How does he understand how to answer me? HOW?!)

xA

P.S. At least I’m good looking for a human. And not just good looking, but very. That Siri. What a guy.

Three Hundred Fifteen.

So, I got my tarot cards read today.

t-gilded

Yup.

It’s something I’ve always been curious about, and I figured hey, I’m feeling kind of lost and have felt like my life has been at a crossroads for like, over a year now, so I might as well just give it a go.

It was weird.

Here’s the thing: I consider myself a very intuitive person. On top of that, I’m a writer, so observing people is like, my favourite thing to do. As a result, I feel like I can read people very well, and I’m extra sensitive to how people speak, the subtext of what they say, and how they interact with me.

This woman was nervous around me. Maybe I’m hard to read – fair enough, I’ve been told that before. She seemed to be struggling very hard with figuring out who I am and what I do, and the “imagery” she kept calling upon had little to nothing to do with me.

She told me I should be a food blogger or a sculptor, and that I would have many opportunities for art openings in New York.

SIDENOTE: She told me I’d travel to New York with my red-headed sister, so Laura, if you’re reading this, pack your bags.

Then she told me I should research how to apply to be a food reviewer for blogs and travel the world doing that.

SIDENOTE: Vegan, gluten-free food blogger. I’d be lynched a week into my new career.

She then told me I should consider getting my Master’s degree (I have one), and that it should be in photography.

SIDENOTE: You know what? I fucking love photography. I wish I did more of it. I am always saying that. And I’m a huge camera nerd. So there’s that.

Between asking me questions and making statements about me that I had to constantly reply, “no” to, she cleared her throat, giggled anxiously, and said things like, “Oh, yeah, that felt wrong,” or, “Oh gosh, that was totally off – let’s scrap that.”

To be honest, everything else she said about me was very…general. That I need to focus on loving myself (I know, I really do), and that I should write down three qualities I love about myself every day for 21 days straight (that’s cool, I actually should, and I actually am going to be blogging about something similar very soon). She told me that I should focus on reconnecting with my spirituality (fair enough), and then mentioned that maybe I could manage a number of yoga studios (KILL ME NOW).

SIDENOTE: No offense, yoga lovers. I tried yoga and it was a huge learning experience for me.

SIDENOTE TO THE SIDENOTE: Oh my fucking god! I thought I had blogged about yoga! I was totally gonna link to it, and it DOESN’T EXIST! And here I thought I was running out of ideas. I’LL NEVER RUN OUT OF IDEAS.

(Haha, watch the universe screw me on like, day 347.)

Guys, I’m not a skeptic. I’ve always been intrigued by tarot and psychics and all that stuff. I totally believe it’s possible. I was totally that 14-year-old with a deck of tarot cards and a book trying to tell my own fortune. (I still have them, too. I know exactly where they are.) Plus, I fucking love Long Island Medium.

g244000000000000000d63efe87d69cd686ba2900a753eb35587ccb0d9e

But lesson learned: Today was not my day for a tarot reading.

OR MAYBE

I should become a tarot card reader.

xA

P.S. If you live where I live and you have been to an amazing tarot card reader and/or psychic, TELL ME NOW. I’m so curious it hurts.

P.P.S. Hilariously, the tarot card reader pulled a bunch of cards pertaining to my last relationship, and almost every single thing – like 94% of what she said about him – was (and/or felt) eerily, eerily accurate. So, if you’re reading this and you want to hear about it, send me a smoke signal and when I’m ready, I’ll tell you all about it.

P.P.P.S. Now the yoga post exists.

Three Hundred Fourteen.

Guys, I promise I’ll stop being like, super emo after today. Or I’ll try my best, anyway.

But I have to say, after the last couple days, even though I haven’t elaborated on anything going on in my life, I have gotten so many sweet, caring messages, some from people I would never expect to even notice me. And that really means a lot to me.

What have I learned from that?

(A) I know some pretty darn good people.

(B) Maybe I am pretty rad and likeable after all. (Haha.)

Thanks, guys.

xA

P.S. If I were really cool, I’d wink and thank you with a winning smile, like this. But since I’m not, you can consider this a thank you anyway. And also, you’re welcome.

anigif_enhanced-buzz-3179-1368991739-1

P.P.S. Shit, if I were that good looking, my ego would be UNSTOPPABLE. I wouldn’t thank anyone for anything. They’d have to thank me for existing. (/sarcasm) (sort of.)

Blog at WordPress.com.

Up ↑