Sportsball.

Hello everyone!

As many of you have already gathered, I sometimes like to use my blog as a way to vent everyday observations and frustrations. Remember the  “Letters to Everything” jag I was on a while back? Well, this is a bit like that, but perhaps more topical.

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Today, in honor of Superbowl XLIX, I thought I would talk about exactly why really don’t like football. I’m one of those people that’s more excited about the Superbowl commercials than the actual Superbowl. While the game is on, you can find me lurking about the chip bowl, doing things like this:

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or this:

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With this general expression:

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As a matter of fact, I’m watching Crazy, Stupid Love for what feels like the hundredth time, because anything is better than football right now.

I feel like this statement by itself somehow marks me as fundamentally unpatriotic. If I’m an American and, for whatever reason, don’t enjoy my country’s national sport, I must also secretly hate puppies and sunshine, or something. Don’t get me wrong, I gave football a chance; but, it was only after being forced to watch football almost every Sunday for the past year that I really began to realize my distaste for it. What certainly doesn’t help is the fact that I have absolutely no idea what’s going on for 90% of the game, and no one will bother explaining anything to me. That’s right: while you’re busy yelling all the plays and penalties along with the game, I’m looking longingly out the window and thinking of all the mimosas I could be drinking at a sidewalk cafe. Even better, when I try to relate to whatever the hell is going on in a game, I somehow turn into the afternoon entertainment, because it’s obvious how inept I am when I ask if the Atlanta team is called the Braves. Is there some sort of stupid football manual I didn’t read as a child because I was too busy doing all my homework?! I feel as if I’ve been ostracized from a bunch of experiences just because I was the kind of kid that ducked when someone threw a ball. It’s gotten to the point where I won’t even pretend to know the first thing about it, and I’ve taken to lovingly calling it the “Sportsball.”

My aversion to football isn’t just purely emotional, mind you. I dislike the vast expense of football, not to mention the toll it takes on the people involved in playing the actual game. These men have made millions of dollars beating the living daylights out of their bodies for the average Joe’s entertainment, but imagine what American society would look like if we took a fraction of the money we spend on football and put it into public education? It’s no shocker that other countries are passing us up when our values are so whacked. Also, as someone who was once an athlete (I trained an average of six hours a day for years. And yes, dance is an athletic endeavor.) in an incredibly undervalued field, I get really bothered by the amount of money spent on football. Most American Olympic athletes make almost no money for a lifetime of hard work. We parade them around as representatives of our great nation, and, in the end, they’re lucky to be sent home with an extra $10, 000 in their pockets if they win. Just some things to think about, America.

And lastly, to all the sportsball-oriented gentlemen out there, let me put it this way:

Do you like shopping for high heels? No.

Let me do my thing, and I’ll let you do yours. Thanks.

Love,

EVA♥

The Holiday Hangover

Hello everyone.

Do you find yourself feeling cold, tired, and generally listless?

Having a hard time getting up in the morning?

Is there an empty space in your house once occupied by your beloved Christmas tree? 

Fighting the urge to put Bailey’s in your morning coffee?

Then, you might have….a holiday hangover.

Like me.

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Lately, all I’ve wanted to do is stay inside and read, or sleep. Or both, to be quite honest. All that January gloom is attempting to set in, but it’s really nice to know that I’m not alone in this. (And neither are you, just in case you’re wondering!) While many of you were dreading the first day back at work, my schedule was finally slowing down. I’ve mentioned before that the Christmas season tends to be quite a busy one for me, and, because I do so enjoy what I do, a return to my normal schedule is almost disappointing. This, combined with all the cold weather can make me one sad bunny.

I’ve had a number of talks with friends in regards to our 2015 resolutions; usually to be fitter, more put-together, more mindful versions of ourselves. Resolutions are simply a way of injecting a sense of purpose into our lives mid-winter. The holidays are finally over, and there’s nothing to take the place of all that cheer. Even if they were less-than-ideal, they do only come once a year, along with all those fancy seasonal Starbuck’s drinks. So, what the hell January?! What are we supposed to do with you?

So, I started thinking…

The concept of new year’s resolutions are really that far off. This time of the year really should be about youWhat do you want to do? Then, instead of just thinking about it, go do it! The other day, a dream of an opportunity presented itself. I made my resolve to go after it, and, not soon after, started to get cold feet. Why? What was I so afraid of? Ultimately, I knew that nothing bad could happen to me. But, I also knew that absolutely nothing at all was going to happen if I didn’t make a move. Sometimes you need to just tell yourself that only good things can come of taking a chance. That’s pretty much all it took for me. Sure, I still had some anxiety surrounding the whole thing, but things like that will only get in your way if you let them. So put on your big girl/boy pants and show January who’s boss.

Love,

EVA♥

Retrospective Monday

Hello everyone.

Today, I wanted to talk to you about some things that I’ve been thinking about recently. I’ve always been a big worrier- always excessively conscientious. Even when positive things come my way, I worry without reason. I’d like to say that I don’t care what other people think, but that’s not nearly true. On the other hand, I’ve never been one to sit around and let other people tell me what to do.

Sometimes it’s so excessively difficult to be confident with the decisions you make. A lot of my personal anxiety comes from the “what if…what if…what ifs?” of daily life. There are some days where I have to talk myself down, and struggle to go about my routines. It’s living moment to moment: just get up, and make some coffee. Now, go wash your face, pick out something to wear, go outside. And on and on… It always gets better, but I wonder if it ever gets easier. Life has a tendency to lob random things at your head, hell, one day my leg might fall off and I might not ever be able to dance again. You never know. I tell myself these things to keep a solid perspective. A close friend of mine is always so positive when it comes to these things, and I asked her where she gets all her good energy from. She, like any of us, has plenty of things to worry or be upset about.  She shared some insight with me, but one of the things that stood out to me was this gem (funnily enough, found on said friend’s Pinterest board):

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 When you, like me, get lost in the “what ifs,” know that life is meant to work out exactly the way it is. Unfortunately, you can’t always pin your happiness on the people in your life, that dream job, or perfect home. I’m sorry, it just doesn’t work like that. You set yourself up for a lot of undue pain that way. Life is going to be messy, occasionally.  That being said, I don’t have all the answers- far from it. All I know, the kind of knowledge you have deep in your bones, is that everything is going to be ok.

Just some thoughts.

EVA♥

Men vs. Plants

Hello everyone!

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I was having dinner with my girlfriend Courtney the other evening. She’s recently redecorated her house in anticipation of a new roommate. New couch, some throw pillows, a bit of pushing the furniture around- I’ve seen the final product and really quite homey. Somewhere along the line, she brought up her new plant friend. The only bit of green in the living room, but she was entirely perplexed as to how to care for it. Sure, succulents seem to be the latest “trendy plant.” They’re everywhere: mounted on walls in picture frames, in antique punch bowls, and hanging from glass orbs from the ceiling. They’re versatile and pretty spectacular to look at.

There’s only one problem: how are you supposed to take care of them?

I had about as much of a clue as Courtney. I’ve had limited experience with them, but I’m fairly sure they’re really low maintenance. To my knowledge, all you do is spray your succulent with water every week, or so. Her plant’s care instructions simply stated to only water if the soil was dry. Other than that, leave it alone. Both of us were confused: how do you know how it’s doing? It doesn’t appear to be dying, but leaves are falling off? Is this normal? What is the thing feeling?

So I got to thinking…men are very much like plants, aren’t they?

Is it doing alright?

Do I need to water it?

Is it happy where it’s sitting?

Is it getting enough light?

Does it think I’m nagging it? Wait…what?

Within this analogy, I’ll admit that I do not have green thumb. Once I spent an entire winter nurturing a Paperwhite Narcissus; have it grow, never blossom, and then die. It was rather depressing. So, in my experience men come with the same convoluted instructions: check in occasionally, make sure it’s not dead, and water. Oh, and cross your fingers. It’s supposed to be really straightforward, but can be really confusing at times. Personally, I’m used to caring for pets, or spending time with my girlfriends, so anything else is completely new territory to me. My point in all this? Yes, like a plant, a new guy in your life can be a wonderful addition. When you find yourself overthinking things, trust yourself enough to leave it alone. I know it’s hard to believe, but I think it really is that simple.

Also, you’re not alone, girl. Men are strange.

 EVA♥

If I Were President…

Hello everyone!

Welcome to the first ever Saturday edition of Watch Me Juggle!

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Today’s Blogtober14 prompt is, appropriately enough: If I were president…”

Why is this so appropriate, you may ask? Well, primarily because the president himself was in my backyard yesterday. Before you ask questions, yes, my backyard is totally the W Hotel in San Francisco. I’m a busy girl, so P made sure to tell Mr. President I said hello, because I had a ballet class to teach and couldn’t make it, naturally. I also got sent this super blurry photo of him:

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See? It’s totally like I was there.

Now, I can’t pretend that I’m wildly involved in politics at this point in my life. Unfortunately, the older I’ve gotten, the more disillusioned I’ve become with them. I’ll admit that it’s difficult to stay optimistic when the men and women in office are so gridlocked in their own political party differences that they can’t even perform their basic job functions.  Not to get overly political on the blog or anything- that’s not what I’m here for, to be quite honest. Yet, there are a few things I feel passionate enough about that I would want to change in this country, if given the chance. I’m sure that this is a gross oversimplification, and that none of things would be even remotely possible at this point, but a girl can dream, can’t she?

I would love to improve the quality of public education in this country. I’ve received an exclusively public school education, from kindergarten to university level, and was quite satisfied with my experience. But, I would love to make art and music education a priority. I dream a country in which the vast majority of schools are arts-based. It’s my personal belief that many of the problems we’re seeing in younger generations, the inability to express feelings until they’re vastly out of control, the penchant for violence, etc. could be almost entirely avoided if we valued the arts more in this country. Unfortunately, we are a completely consumerist culture, and don’t see enough value in investing in the formative years of life, or in our “twilight years,” for that matter.  We dump an obscene amount of money into entertainment and sports, but most of these things aren’t thought-provoking or personal the way that the arts can be. If we put them on equal pedestals, instead of dismissing artistic endeavors as a gross waste of time or a childhood occupation, we would be all the better for it. I’ve personally committed myself to an occupation that, while paying jobs do exist, will leave you in a constant struggle to make ends meet. Once upon a time, dance was government subsidized, and there were a vast number of successful companies touring the country. Now, you’re lucky if you see upwards of $100 for all your hard work.On another note, the mental healthcare system in this country is deplorable. Just walk anywhere, anywhere in San Francisco and you’ll see what I mean. The people who need this help the most aren’t getting it, and I’m sure statistics will point to the fact that many of them are veterans. I could go on and on, really. These are just a few things that have been on my mind since I first caught sight of today’s prompt.

*Phew*

And lastly, if I were president, I would also say:

Free chocolate for everyone. 

That is all.

EVA♥

Living Alone; Part II of The Random Thoughts Chronicles.

 Hello everyone!

 

Today is a continuation of the Brain Is Cobwebs series, aka: The Random Thoughts Chronicles. I’ve been revisiting it periodically in the midst of my writing, and boy, they were really random. I wanted to write about something that’s been near and dear to my heart for quite a while now, something that I’ve often touched upon briefly in past posts.

I live alone.

Yes, it was a very daunting thought when I first stepped into the realtor’s offic. I remembered how I felt when left home alone as a kid, and assumed every day would feel a little like that. What if I got lonely? What if I couldn’t decide what to wear out at night? What if I decided to watch a scary movie all alone and subsequently scared the crap out of myself? What if everyone forgets about me while I’m holed up all alone in my pad? All alone. That’s the phrase that kept repeating itself in my head.

I’m really glad that I had so many great people to encourage me, or else I would have never done it. They had lived through the “aloneness” and even rejoiced in it. I love living all by myself now. Mind you, sometimes my house looks like a war zone; And sometimes I burn my dinner beyond recognition; and sometimes I do watch scary movies (ultimately a bad idea). I’ll also be the first to tell you that I owned only an airbed, suitcase, coffeemaker, and dresser when I initially moved in. But, no one is around to chastise me for the mess, or laugh at my failed culinary attempts, and I find that a ridiculous amount of cartoons can chase away anything that might have spooked you.  Whatever the Ikea directions say, you can put that bed frame together all on your own. Years ago, a friend of mine visited me in the Bay Area and remarked upon how my apartment made her feel a little sad. She had never lived alone, and now, living with her fiancee, she would never really get the chance. It makes me feel a bit lucky, in a way, that I can come home to a place that really is all mine.

So, there are all my deep thoughts about living alone. On the other hand, I find that it’s given me rather peculiar mannerisms that other people are quick to remark on, much like the video I posted above. My quirks involve things such as:

  • Spontaneous singing of questions/statements
  • Adding sound effects to daily life, i.e. makeup application (Whoosh!!)
  • Eating entire meals in bed. No, not like breakfast in bed. Like, it’s too-hard-to-eat-off-of-this-plate-while-sitting-in-a-chair.
  • Spontaneous bad dance moves and/or flailing.
  • Not using proper silverware/plates/glassware when eating meals. i.e. I stir my coffee with a butter knife every morning.
  • Talking to myself out loud. I’m unfortunately infamous for this as it startled past roommates. I can’t imagine why…

There you have it, ladies and gentlemen, the pros and cons of living alone. Having your own places means you can do whatever you want, whenever you want, but don’t be surprised if the rest of society finds you irrevocably weird.

EVA♥

I Can’t Read

Hello all!

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I’m going to confess a little problem I’m having with all of you.

I can’t read.

Of course, I’m literate. I’m physically and mentally capable of reading, I just….can’t.

If you’re frustrated with this lackluster explanation, join the club. I’ve been in love with books all my life, but it’s become a rather tumultuous relationship as of late. Since I was a kid, I loved the way books smelled, the way the covers crinkled in your hands. I would read my favorites over and over again, until the pages were so dog-eared and the covers so creased they ceased to lay flat when I finally had to set them down. I would attempt to walk and read simultaneously, and got scolded at least once a week for bringing books to the dinner table and propping them in front of my plate. You could always tell my most loved stories were the ones where the pages were most stained, or most stuck-together. When I outgrew blankets, and my favorite stuffed rabbits, books were my constant companion. I can say that, as is the case with so many other bibliophiles, they were a means of escape. When I couldn’t read them, I resorted to books on tape, which was akin to falling asleep while being read a bedtime story. I still do this, on occasion. When I got to college, my roommates could always tell when I was going through a difficult time, not necessarily because I divulged everything, but often because I became a voracious consumer of books. I grabbed anything I could off our communal bookshelf, and would plow through extensive novels in mere days. At times when I couldn’t cope with my own reality, the ones in print were so much more appealing.

Over the last few years, my books and I have grown apart, and it breaks my heart. I still adore them. I eagerly run to the local bookstore to stock up on the latest bestseller, or any novel that catches my eye, really. I’ll open them, cracking their spines just enough to satisfy, and then find myself reading the same two pages over and over again. This continuous loop drives me to pick up another book, thinking that maybe this one will be different, that it will pique my interest. I’ll repeat this pattern until I’ve reached a mound of books, all relatively new, stacked by my bedside. I find can blame a lot of things for this new, maddening ritual- the TV is always on, it’s drone keeping me company. This blog, and all the other blogs out there, make for quick reading anytime. My iPhone, with all its apps and news headlines available to read right at my fingertips. My paper friends just can’t keep up with my constantly buzzing mind. I can’t even sit still long enough to read them.It’s somewhat reassuring to share these feelings with other (actual) adults I know, because, more often than not, they feel the same way. It’s much easier to check out in front of Youtube than to engage yourself in any real way. I’ve acknowledged my problem, and I’ve decided that it’s time to do something about it.

I recently came across the idea of a “blackout” night, or rather, a night in which one shuts off all electronic devices for a set period of time, usually prior to bed. While I wouldn’t classify myself as a technology addict (I much prefer the company of people I’m in a room with than the social media on my phone), it has become quite the pervasive ritual in my life. I hope at some point this summer, when I’m not meddling about in the city, the studio, or the kitchen, I’ll find some time to turn everything off and read a really good book; the kind that teaches you something, or makes you feel something at the very least. Now that I’ve shared my plan with you, I’m going to have to stick to it, lest I feel like a complete dunce by the end of the summer. You can only watch so much trashy TV. Those books aren’t going to read themselves, you know.

EVA♥

Spot the Difference: Ballet Edition

Hello everyone and happy Friday!

My friends and I are gearing up for a dear friend’s wedding this weekend, so today’s post will be short and sweet. I’m sure many of you, dancers and non-dancers alike, have come across the controversy surrounding the recent Free People ballet-inspired ad campaign. Dancers are, to put it mildly, outraged. We claim that it’s entirely obvious that the model in the video hasn’t had much dance training at all. In my humble opinion, because ballet is not considered an “accessible” art form, it’s more than likely that whomever was appointed to cast this commercial, had absolutely no idea what they were looking for. They have since re-launched their ad campaign featuring classically trained ballet dancers. Since then, I’ve come across another ad, this time by Levi’s, also with classically trained dancers. But you tell me ladies and gentlemen, can you spot the difference?

 

Have a good weekend,

EVA♥

A Letter to the Gauchos

Hello to my fellow Gauchos, ladies, friends, and all others who read this blog.

I’m writing to you fresh off of my vacation, and, quite honestly envisioned my first post back to be something very different. I was hoping to write to you about my travel adventures in the Pacific Northwest and all the fantastic UCSB alumni I met with along the way. However, as most of you are well aware of by now, a tragedy has occurred at my beloved alma mater, and I feel the distinct need to address it here.

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The years I spent at UCSB and living in Isla Vista were some of the best years of my life. Comprised entirely of UCSB and SBCC students, Isla Vista is a hub for young people to bond, to share their homes and lives with each other. Its community is inherently trusting and, in my day, you would rarely find a home with the front door locked. Although it got many of us in to trouble on occasion, (hello Halloween insanity!) Isla Vista welcomed anyone and everyone with open arms. It was a special, very happy place. Ask any Gaucho, and they will corroborate my story.

After the news broke on Friday of the mass killings in Isla Vista, I was glad to coincidentally be in the company of so many fellow UCSB alumnae. We’re still all struggling with coming to terms with what happened. I, admittedly, am trying not to dwell on it too much. The New York Times recently released a “Trail of Violence in Isla Vista” graphic mapping the events that took place that night. Of the two places I lived in Isla Vista, shots were fired mere feet away from my former homes. The path I used to bike to campus everyday was the same the gunman drove down and injured multiple people. The IV Deli Mart, now with its windows shot out, was formerly the bookstore I would frequent for all of my textbooks. That pervasive sense of freedom and happiness that myself and many others associate with Isla Vista has been taken from us. The beautiful place I used to call home and the wonderful people I shared it with deserves to make national news for its many accolades, not for something so unspeakably tragic. The deaths and injuries were horrific, senseless, and, without question, preventable.

I would be lying if I said I’m not deeply sad- I’m angry, even. The more I hear about what has happened; the more news articles I read, and trends on Twitter I follow about, the more my frustration grows. This obviously wasn’t some random act of violence. It was a hate crime against women.  It was a hate crime committed by a misogynistic, narcissistic little boy with a gun who felt such a sense of entitlement, believed so strongly that women owed him something, that when they didn’t submit to him, he felt the need to “punish” them.  Regardless off the fact that this is the behavior of someone obviously and deeply disturbed, let me take this moment to say, on behalf of my fellow women:

We owe you nothing. 

At the risk of sounding horribly jaded, what I’m bewildered by is how many people are surprised by this show of misogyny and gender disparity. There isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t consider it. It’s become so ingrained in my behavior that it’s second nature. I consider it when I get dressed in the mornings, when I park my car on my commute, and everytime I walk anywhere alone. Everytime. As a woman, you’re indirectly taught that the way you look and the way you behave has great bearing on whether or not you’re harassed or victimized. To not become a target you learn to do things like walk quickly, stay off your phone, never make eye contact, never park next to a windowless van, never leave your drink unattended, never go to the bathroom alone; never wear anything too short, too low-cut,or heels that are too high, or even your hair in a ponytail alone at night. I could go on. Stray outside the protocol of “respectable” behavior and you knowingly put yourself at risk. This is universally understood by all the women I know. While I’m optimistic in regards to the powerful #YesAllWomen trend on Twitter stemming from a show of solidarity against the hate-filled ravings of Elliot Rodger, it doesn’t mean anything is changing. Of course, sharing and acknowledging these truths is the first step to ensure nothing like this happens ever again. The father of one of the victims, Christopher Martinez, has spoken publicly on his belief that his son would be alive today if not for “craven, irresponsible politicians and the NRA.” Now, once the insufficient and indiscriminate gun laws are addressed, what then? What about the quality of mental health care in this country? Or lack thereof? What about the fact that all of this, and all the stories you read with #YesAllWomen, stems from an inherent lack of respect and encouraged degradation of women in society in general? There are so many issues that need to be addressed as we move forward and attempt to heal. There might not be definitive solutions to any of them, but that doesn’t mean we can’t try.

….

Oh SB, always a part of me!
Oh hear me shout, hear me shout
Hear me Shout! Shout! Shout!
Rain or shine 
Win or lose
My heart belongs to you!

Love,

EVA

Marina Girl Adventures

Hello everyone!

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A rooftop snap from my Instagram. Rachel was a perturbed photobomb participant, to say the least. If you squint, you can see the Golden Gate in the background too!

This last weekend, I tagged along with my good friend Rachel to a joint birthday party at San Francisco’s Fort Mason. For those of you that are unfamiliar with San Francisco, the grassy field located in the Marina district is also lovingly known as “Frat Mason.” If 28 year-old Joe College types are your thing, I suggest you spend all your sunny weekends there, ladies. Like it’s sister Dolores Park, Fort Mason provides you with some amazing and hilarious people watching. On this occasion, I witnessed some drunken pinata bashing and overheard complete strangers’ loud, overdramatic gossip that had me stifling giggles.

Funnily enough, what I like so much about the Marina tends to be what I occasionally dislike about the Marina. It’s unlike any other part of San Francisco, home to beautiful views and a mix of old and new money. But, having lived in the Bay Area for so long, I can’t help but think that the majority of people who reside in this part of town are transplants that are, well, suspicious of the rest of San Francisco. Don’t even get me started on what they think of Oakland. I additionally find that the blonde-to-brunette ratio quite disturbing here (hint: yours truly lies in the minority). However, its distinct population and bustling main streets are what make it so fun to hang out in. No where else in the city would a band of girls parading down the street in the middle of the day with speakers blasting Rihanna be deemed socially acceptable. I was one of the people heading that group, I’ll admit it. In short, my afternoon looked like something out of the Selfie music video, except in the middle of the day and without that pervasive beat. If you ever find yourself taking life too seriously, this is the place to go; have a mimosa, maybe get your nails done, and enjoy the views. Admittedly, what prompted me to write this little blurb was a video I came across on The Bold Italic yesterday.

Created by 941 Social Club, it’s a roast of all things Marina. Why? As Bold Italic writer Wendy Steiner says: “because making fun of Marina stereotypes is one of the purest joys of life.” The creator of the video is a Marina resident herself, so it’s all in good fun. I had a good laugh myself, partially because I’ve been to 90% of all the places shown. And yes, that strawberry concoction from The Tipsy Pig is juice.

Love,

EVA