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Weddings

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!

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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 Seven.

Remember like almost 300 days ago when I wrote about personality traits that are sexy?

SIDENOTE: I sure made it seem early on like I had a huge boner for Adam Levine. What’s hilarious is I barely have a boner for him.*

SIDENOTE TO THE SIDENOTE: I know, I know, now you’re all like, “My god, Andrea, what CAN we believe if not that?!” Sorry.

Well, I’m here to tell you that my varied tastes in men are not a new thing in my life. I’ve always been attracted to all sorts of cool dudes.

On that note, I give you… (drumroll)

MEN I THOUGHT I’D MARRY WHEN I WAS A SMALL CHILD by Andrea Beça.

SIDENOTE: By “small,” I mean like, 13 and under, but some of these dreams have never died. I’ll leave you to guess which ones.

William_T._Riker,_2365
William T. Riker.

What. A fucking. Dreamboat.

Oh, Riker. I just couldn’t get enough. What with his dreamy blue eyes and his beard. This childhood obsession crush worries me the most because my dad had a very similar beard. So maybe I just thought Riker was my dad. But I definitely thought about marrying him. Whatever, kids are weird. They don’t understand that stuff. Let’s all agree that Riker was the coolest.

SIDENOTE: Ironically, in hindsight, I totally find Patrick Stewart way dreamier.

craigsimpson
Craig Simpson.

No, you didn’t accidentally click over to someone else’s blog. I, Andrea Beça, was in love with a hockey player. It all started when I was in kindergarten and I met him IN PERSON and I was like OH MY GOD I LOVE YOU. I mean I didn’t say that out loud. But he was super cute and like, cool and a grown up with a super interesting and exciting job, and he was pretty famous and a big deal and he was being super nice to us so giggle squee oh my gosh and also I WAS FIVE.

I had a couple of his hockey cards and I held onto them for dear life so that if anyone asked if I had a boyfriend, I could pull them out. Also maybe so that I could plan our wedding to match the Edmonton Oilers colours.

If you caught me on the right day I might still brag about meeting him even though it was over 20 years ago and I barely remember it.

liam-neeson-young-photos
Liam Neeson.

The real reason I wanted to visit Ireland.

Just kidding.

But seriously.

I can’t even remember the first time I saw Liam Neeson, but it was pretty much love at first sight. As my mom says, “I think you just saw him on Entertainment Tonight and stuff and you were hooked.” I guess I just had good taste.

Vincent Price.
Vincent Price.

VINCENT PRICE WHY ARE YOU SO COOL?! YOUR VOICE IS COOL. YOUR MOUSTACHE IS COOL. YOUR LAUGH IS COOL (and a little scary, but in the good way). YOUR STYLE IS COOL. I LIKE ALL YOUR MOVIES. EVEN THE BAD ONES.

vincent-price
Vincent Price and a Friend.

IS THAT A BIRD? I LOVE BIRDS! CAN WE HANG OUT? DO YOU WANT TO GO STEADY? I LOVE YOU.

Lesson learned: The childhood heart wants what it wants. Also, sometimes that doesn’t change.

xA

P.S. Please note that this is just a selection of the many men I thought I would marry. Childhood lasts quite a few years. I know you don’t have all day.

*I have to say, I commend guys for putting up with boners. I mean, you don’t give birth or anything, but if I got a boner every time I was excited, I’d have a lot more awkward stories than I already have in life.

I feel like that came out wrong.

I feel like this conversation got uncomfortable.

I guess I just meant to say penises are weird. Way to go at managing them or whatever.

But I mean like, don’t brag about it. It’s not that special.

(Shut up, Andrea. Shut up.)

Three Hundred Six.

Yesterday I got to spend the day in a beautiful location watching two of my favourite people get married.

Holy cow, guys, it was perfect. I feel so lucky to have been there, and so lucky to know the happy couple (Hi, Mandelle and Adam! I love you guys!).

It happened in a small town just outside of Calgary – a quaint, storybook country setting.

DeWinton

My friend Caitlin and I got dolled up and had basically the best time ever.

Cait and Ang

We laughed, cried, ate, and danced our asses off. I don’t think I have ever had that much fun dancing at a wedding. My friend Caitlin’s a damn good date. I highly recommend her presence.

I’m not going to go into great detail on the wedding today, though I might talk about it more another time. For now, I’m just setting the scene for a hilarious moment.

When I say we were dancing our asses off, I totally mean it. We danced like crazy people – air punching, shimmying, jumping, shaking our butts, scream-singing along to the Spice Girls and scream-rapping along to Run DMC (shout out to Keith, our friend and DJ, for taking my song request). When “It’s Like That” came on, our shoes came off and we really went for it.

Right at the end of the night, a guy we had met throughout the wedding day and night hopped onto the dance floor to dance with us. We were all having a great time when he dropped into a dramatic dance move, really low to the ground.

Cue the sound of a record scratch and the music going dead silent. (But only in our minds, because in real life the music kept playing.)

His face flashed from “having a great time” to “oh my fucking god” faster than any of us could even process.

“I ripped my pants!” he shouted over the music.

“Ha ha!” I laughed. I thought he was joking.

“I ripped my pants!” he said again, scurrying off the dance floor.

“Oh my god!” Caitlin and I said to one another, feeling both extreme sympathy and extremely amused.

It soon became clear that he wasn’t – ahem – properly attired to continue dancing despite the rip. If you know what I mean.

AND THEN I HAD A FLASHBACK TO:

A night in Glasgow. A few of my classmates and I had been out to see what was the worst production of Othello I have ever seen in my life. It was so bad, in fact, that we ran away at intermission. If you know me at all, you know that a production/movie/anything has to be horrendous for me to leave before it’s over, because if I can avoid being disrespectful of the work being presented to me, I will. I’ve been a producer. I’ve been a director. I’ve been an actor. I teach Zumba classes all week. I know what it feels like to watch people walk out of your work.

But it was that bad.

Now, all of my classmates are like me, so we all felt guilty for leaving, but we were desperate. So naturally, we didn’t leave the theatre calmly. Well, we left the auditorium calmly – but then we ran. Why did we run? I don’t know. I still run to the parkade every time I leave work early, even when my boss tells me to leave work early. I guess my instincts tell me I may be caught and chastised or something.

Regardless, we hurried.

I was speed walking down a dark, narrow street next to my classmate Carissa when we all heard an “OooooOOP!” and our friend Janice disappeared from our peripheral vision.

There was a thud.

Our first instinct, of course, was to say, “Oh my god, are you okay?”

The only response we got was laughter, which started small and built up to straight up maniacal. Janice was beside herself; she could not stop.

“Guys! Guys!” she tried to talk between gasps for air, “It’s a banana! It’s a BANANA!”

We looked around, trying to determine what the hell she was talking about.

And there it was.

banana-peels

Janice had slipped on a banana peel.

Need I say more?

Lesson learned: Sometimes those quintessential “movie moments” happen in real life. And boy, are they ever entertaining.

xA

P.S. Totally just shared the link to this post on Facebook only to have my friend Janice tell me that it was Carissa who slipped, not her! I guess I remembered it backwards because I was LAUGHING FOREVER.

One Hundred Forty Four.

Sweden, 2010

My BFF Margaret and I were enjoying a brain-fried-blurry post-master’s thesis trip to Gothenburg and Stockholm. Our hostel room in Gothenburg – which was lovely – had no windows, so when we turned out the lights to go to bed, it was PITCH BLACK.

On one particular night, we turned out the lights and then I remembered that I had forgotten to take out my contacts. No problem, I thought to myself, I am a pro at taking out my contacts without a mirror. I clicked on my cell phone for a biteen on light, grabbed my case, and took care of business.

The next morning, I discovered that it wasn’t taking out my contacts without a mirror that was the challenge: it was getting them into the contact case in the dark that was the challenge. And I had failed. Miserably. One of my contacts was stuck to the outer side of the case, completely dried up and ruined.

Oh shit.

I had to spend the remainder of our trip wearing glasses, which yes, was doable, but was also very annoying in the bright sunshine.

Before.UV protected!
Before. UV protected!
After. Squinty.
After. Squinty.

Vancouver, 2012

I was in Vancouver for my brother’s wedding. I had just gone out with my sister-in-law for her bachelorette party. We had snacks and wine, and it was a great time, but being that it was also the same day I had flown into the city, I was pretty tired, so I cut out a bit early to get some sleep at the hotel. I went to bed around midnight, ready to sleep the night away.

At about 1:15am, I was awoken by a brutal noise. The fire alarms in the entire high-rise hotel were going off. Shit, was this for real? Do we bother evacuating? I consulted my mom and as we started to hear a lot of movement in the hallways, we decided yes, we had better get out of the building. I ran to my suitcase quickly to grab what I needed, and discovered that my “I think I’m forgetting something” feeling when I was packing was spot-on: I had not packed the following:

  • Glasses
  • Jacket

There was no time for me to put on my contacts, and it was late July, so how cold could it be? I grabbed my phone to be safe and we took the stairs into the back alley, where I froze my blind ass off for at least 30-45 minutes.

Brutal.

These are just two of many, many times I’ve “learned” to always pack a back-up. I say “learned,” because it’s clearly not sticking.

xA

P.S. Other things I’ve forgotten to pack include pyjamas (which I am notorious for forgetting), deodorant, and the one trip where I decided one pair of shoes was enough, and the one pair of shoes I brought had heels. SMRT. And you?

One Hundred Thirty Three.

I’m not much of a wedding girl.

Like, I’m not one of those girls who has been planning their wedding since they were five. In fact, I’m twenty six and I still haven’t thought about it. And brides on TV shows terrify me (but I still watch some of the shows because they scare me), and so does the idea of a Disney wedding.

Some of the dresses are pretty - it's the idea of wanting to be a Disney Princess that freaks me out.
Some of the dresses are pretty – it’s the idea of wanting to be a Disney Princess that freaks me out.

So when I’m at a party or in some other social situation where someone I don’t really know well and/or care about is talking about being engaged or planning a wedding or what their wedding was like, I’m like, “Okay, moving along, next subject, blah blah blah” in my head.

But then in the last few years, people I love started getting married.

It started with my BFF Louise in 2009. I was lucky enough to be able to attend her wedding literally four days before I moved to Scotland. At the time, we were still relatively new friends, but let me tell you, I could not stop crying. Louise looked so incredibly beautiful, and she was so happy, and I had the honour of being her wedding DJ and pressing ‘play’ on the song she walked down the aisle to. Shut up, right? It was amazing. I still feel all weird when I think about it.

(Good weird.)

I would talk about all of the gorgeous weddings in between, but I’d run out of room here, so now we need to fast forward to the end of 2011, when my brother told my family and I that he and his beautiful girlfriend Laura (my now sister-in-law!) were engaged.

He told me first, over the phone, and I cried. But then when he was home visiting us for Christmas, my mom was like, “So, which of the boys is gonna be your Best Man?” and my brother was like, “Actually, I was hoping that Andrea would be my Best Man.”

And I was like:

...
......!
……!

And then I CRIED.

Don’t even get me started on the ceremony. It was so perfect in every way, I can’t even. I’m honestly shocked that there are ANY nice photos of me, because I felt like I was ugly sobbing the whole time. I was choking back scream-sobs during the vows. Guys, I was holding back tears so hard that it made me sweat and I soaked the tissue I had stuffed in my bra for when I started crying during the ceremony.*

(Should have had a back-up plan.)

Definitely one of the best days of my life.
Definitely one of the best days of my life.

Okay, so yes, I’m an emotional mess when people I love get married. That’s normal, right?

But recently things have gone a step further.

Because now one of my BFFs – Jolene – is getting married, and she has asked me to be her MOH.

FYI, that’s Maid of (fucking) Honour in cool wedding acronym speak.

And not only did I cry when she asked me, but I’ve turned into a bit of a SUPERNERD about this wedding. All of a sudden, I want to ask her a bajillion questions about colour schemes, decorations, venues, and dresses. My god, do I ever want to just sit down and have a full discussion about dresses.

I want to start trying on dresses like, a year ago.

WHO HAVE I BECOME?

I don’t even care, because it makes me crazy happy to see my friends happy.

Lesson learned? I apparently care – no, CARE – about weddings. And I’m cool with that.***

xA

P.S. My other BFF Mandelle is also getting married next year and I am ridiculously excited to attend. I know she’s drowning in plans, but I wish she were getting married tomorrow.

*I’m single, gents!**

**Should I have a complex about the fact that I am the only single one of my BFFs and I?

***When they’re for people I love. I’m still pretty indifferent otherwise. Sorry!

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