Do Not Open Until

Pretend for a second that these are your favorite pair of underwear (this may be awkward for you if you are a male person, but just go with it). What scenario would justify wearing them? A date? Your birthday? Tuesday? Not until your 20th wedding anniversary?

How we include our favorite things in our lives can be very telling about how we are as people, I think. For a very long time I have had a favorite everything- shirt, plate, lipgloss, scissors, pen, and, of course, underwear- and got a weird sense of satisfaction out of not using it. I would come up with elaborate fantasy scenarios for the circumstances that would give me the permission to use or wear whatever it was. This nail polish is so perfect and beautiful, and cost three dollars more than any other nail polish I own, so I will only wear it when I go out for strawberry milkshakes with my true love. Cut to finding this four dollar bottle of nail polish in the back of a drawer (which it was fused to) looking semi-exploded and a completely different color than it started because it is so old and gross.

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I do still believe it’s nice to save some things for special occasions, but what qualifies as a special occasion should be something that is likely to occur in the regular course of your life at least two or three times a year, or more depending on the longevity of the item. The logical reasons for this include expiration dates (not always just a suggestion), value, and the very nature of indulgence. Lots of things are at their best when they’re fresh, and not just the perishables. Clothes go out of fashion and handbags get much less dusty if you use them. And if you’ve bought something because you love it more than the usual things in your life then it’s purpose for existing, and your purpose in buying it, are squandered by it’s being put on a pedestal of seclusion.

It took ┬áme a long time to realize this was stupid, and even longer to do something about it. Now that I have consciously become someone who does and uses what they like I’m extremely aware of it and hyper appreciative when I do. And I have to say it’s so much better than not doing it or using it- as you probably knew, because you are not a freak with a five year old sample pouch of luxury shampoo.

While “you’re worth it” (and you are), “life is short”, and “YOLO” these extreme philosophies shouldn’t be necessary to get into the practice of enjoying your life. Definitely keep a nice bottle of champagne in the fridge in case something exciting happens, but if no one has commited their lives to you or decided to give you more money by the end of the year, then drinking it while you eat pie and watch your Buffy the Vampire Slayer box set in novelty leggings is a worthwhile special occasion.

Broken Record

This is not going to be new. But if I have to continue living with it, then you can continue reading about it.

On a day when I definitely needed it I was treated to the profound ego boost that is being asked out while standing in line for salad. Sadly, the gentleman prefaced his request by pulling his pants down to show me his underwear. I informed the servers that my salad should be nowhere near his salad at any point in time. The scariest part of this story is that I was criticized for turning him down too readily. I realize it’s been a while since I’ve had an even slightly normal experience with a male person, but throwing the “don’t-show-me-your-underwear-in-eating-establishments” standard out the window is not an option. Sorry, boys.

Now I’m back to the hopeless endeavor of randomly bumping into someone charming and attractive while substitute teaching. For some reason eligible bachelors are not often found in public school classrooms. And the few that work there are married. Because that is the unspoken rule of teachers.

Until I cave to the threat/inevitability of grad school, or am hired to write things, I will continue taking a super long time waiting for my lattes and praying that no one feels the need to start stripping in a show of affection. And I will also take into consideration that my stripping in public might be rewarded with a more positive reaction. No promises.