Just a quick note that I have decided to switch gears with my blogging. F that S was originally started as an alt-career blog that documented my life as I aimed for a new career, experienced a major move and many (mostly amazing) life changes along the way. In starting a new chapter in my life, I felt it was appropriate to transition to a new blog that focuses more on my life as it is now (and where it goes from here).
Thank you to all my readers! I’m sure I didn’t get to 500 posts and a little over 315,000 hits for nothing. I truly hope you will join me on my new journey – Introducing A Green(ish) Life
At the suggestion of Miss Angela, I’ve started reading Gretchen Rubin‘s The Happiness Project. This wonderful suggestion was the result of me sharing a recent incident where someone I’ve known a very long time essentially unloaded about 15 years worth of built-up issues onto me in grand mud-slinging style (aka Ad hominem). To say it was upsetting would be an understatement. To say it was extremely hurtful and completely unexpected would sum it up better. And per usual, being placed in this situation, I was so astonished that I became unable to properly defend myself or counterattack – mostly because I’m horrible with confrontation. If I feel legitimately offended by someone’s treatment of me, my preferred style is to roll things around in my head a while (aka, over-analyze) before I address it. If I feel that the relationship is worth salvaging, I then send a well-thought-out email to plainly express my thoughts on the situation in hopes of starting a non-confrontational conversation about what happened. Unfortunately, the blunt style of this email doesn’t go over well with types who can’t handle being put in their place. The last thing they want to acknowledge is that 1. They may have been wrong in the way they acted and 2. They may have to actually face the reality of another person’s feelings.
That last part, acknowledgingthe reality of another person’s feelings, was a small snippet in the parenting section of Rubin’s book. That, along with her mentioning the old adage that “everyone’s life is much more complicated than you know” really hit home for me. And not in a way that justified MY position in the current situation, but instead forced me to examine it from the other side.
After a stressful weekend away, I felt I needed a little “forest bathing” down the seasonal road near the Five Birch Perch. It didn’t take long before I realized I had a tail….with a tail! Grim-cat decided to join me on my journey, turning what would normally have been a quiet meditative walk into a playful photo session! See how many photos you can spot the “wild panther” in:
Being an alum of the prestigious Pratt Insitute, I not only get eager young work-study interns calling to ask for donations (with what money? I ask), but the Prattfolio in the mail. The latest issue focuses on this, the institute’s 125 year anniversary. I did enjoy the history lesson of the decade-by-decade recaps of Pratt’s shining moments, and voted for the best of the top 125 designs by fellow alumni (The Chrysler Building, hands down), but most importantly I spotted a small memorial to one of my favorite teachers: Charles Goslin
I was in Goslin’s graphic design class junior year and then again for senior project. He was about 800 years old, called all the girls he liked “lover-lips” (surprisingly not creepy, coming from him) and truly believed in clear communication over fancy design tricks. “If it is not needed, take it out” he loved to say, and I tended to agree, with my stark designs, so different from the high energy, city-that-never-sleeps work of my classmates. I can’t say I was one of his prize students – I could tell before I graduated that I didn’t have the overly competitive personality required to excel in the City – but he treated every one of us with respect and led by example with his integrity. I couldn’t bring myself to behave like some of my classmates, who refused to share Photoshop techniques or contacts in the industry, and who went out drinking with certain lecherous teachers in order to raise their grades. I just worked hard for my own benefit and didn’t care if I came out on top. After reading a snippet of the 2003 commencement speech that Goslin gave, I now see that he was a strong reinforcement in my belief of art for art’s sake:
I am now of a certain age where various friends/ex-boyfriends are not only getting married but having babies at an alarming rate. While I did experience a couple of friends getting pregnant back in my later years of high school, at 18 I was propelled into the “never-never-land” of NYC, where for 10 years top priorities lay in job promotions and open bars, rather than settling down and reproducing. Now that Butch and I live a much quieter life (where an evening out on the town involves driving down the street to the local biker bar for wing-night), I’ve finally started to read the writing on the wall that 5 years ago could have been written in Sanskrit for all I cared. Yes, I am currently thinking about the possibility of maybe kinda sorta planning to have a baby.
Don’t get me wrong – the indecision in my tone has nothing to do with not wanting to pass on my impeccable genes…it’s more a matter of logistics. Butch and I are recently married, and recent home buyers, which means we have recently acquired a level of debt that neither of us feels comfortable with. But the overall opinion seems to be that one should not wait until they can “afford” a baby, because that day will never come. Which means that I need to accept the fact that although our 1,200 sq ft house may be small by super-sized American standards, building an addition actually isn’t necessary to accommodate up to 3 children, provided they don’t move around too much. The same goes for that luxurious sun deck I wanted, or the trip to Ireland – neither of which is going to happen anytime soon, kids or not. So money is actually not an obstacle, and neither is Butch’s age, my new job (and old ego), or our dedication to a green(ish) lifestyle.
It was an interesting week – starting with an incredibly insensitive “joke” and a smattering of (I assume, heat-induced) snippy-ness, which resulted in me escaping to Ithaca for most of the weekend to visit my extremely positive college friend Amelia (who is also a very talented photographer). Upon returning I felt refreshed, had a long conversation with an old friend about old baggage and said goodbye to a new friend at a rained-out BBQ. Oh, and then I saw a newspaper article about “letting things go” ironically written by a person who has yet to acknowledge that they recently hurt me deeply. Below are my thoughts on all of the above.