Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Sixth Reason The World Is Ending

5. The Only Temperate Place in the World is Hawaii- and They Don't Have an OT School

Friends, I am in the process of filling out my applications for grad school. There are many factors going into my decision. Mainly, climate. Now, this only makes up about 96% of the selection for me. There is still an important 4% involving housing, tuition, quality of the program, etc. So far I have eliminated the majority of places above a certain latitude. The east coast is scary. If it isn't the earthquakes, the hurricanes, or blizzards, the homeless people will get you. The midwest is too full of cows and tornados. Texas is basically on fire. This leaves about four states as a potential for my future residence. I thought I had narrowed down my choices again, when I found unsettling climatic facts about each of the places I am considering attending.

San Jose State
This is where my parents went to school and met and fell in love and got married. They have a bit of a soft spot for the Silicon Valley. They also remember the glory days when SJSU was actually a viable athletic force. Unfortunately, I have personally always associated San Jose with scary crime. My mom told me this story of being stalked on her way home to her sorority and scared me to death as a kid. Plus it's always foggy there. Plus it's expensive to live there. Did I mention it's foggy?

Pacific University
I had heard great things about the program and I saw the facilities for myself and it's nice. The faculty seems friendly and Hillsboro is very pleasant (and not scary). I do know a few people in the Portland area, but it would not be anything like Provo. Every time I talk about going there my mom mentions that it is dreary and rainy the entire year. Now, this isn't true. It's only dreary and rainy the majority of the year. Now, I can handle that, I mean in Sacramento you go a few months a year when you forget what the sun looks like. But, what I had been used to growing up and had expected out of Oregon was that it wouldn't dip below freezing. I was wrong.

AT Still
I was talking to my dentist who is a sponsor of the dental program at AT Still (scroll down to "Family Dentistry") about maybe going there. Just before he drilled into a cavity, he pulled out his iphone and showed me the current weather in Mesa. 115 degrees. One Hundred and Fifteen.

University of Utah
It's amazing I have survived as many Utah winters as I have, I really shouldn't push it.

Now, this was looking like a good option. I had spent a weekend this summer in Albuquerque and it was nice. The temperature wasn't too hot. It wasn't muggy. I speak passable Spanish. Both sides of my family has history going back to New Mexico. I honestly hadn't heard about their program until a couple weeks ago, but it looked really good. Then I made the mistake of looking at the lows and average snowfall during the winter. I thought it was a desert.

Ok, I'll take a second to be serious. These are all fabulous schools, and it would be an honor to go to any of them. And let's face it, if I've survived as long as I have in Provo winters, I can make it through 3 more years somewhere else. Maybe.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Til I'm Gone

As I was home alone today again for over 13 hours, I had plenty of time for a dance party in my backyard. After punch-dancing out my boredom a good 45 minutes, I decided to plant. I worked on grounds over 3 years and so general gardening is something I now have a strange affinity for.

So, after planting some new flowers in my backyard, I was just sitting there, with the evening sun filtering through the oak leaves, and this little bird flew onto my shoulder. He didn't stay very long, but it was seriously the coolest thing. A little while ago, a friend told me this could happen if you stand really still, but I honestly thought he was full of it. I mean the little guy might have just chosen me because, with all the dirt and leaves I was covered in, I realistically looked and smelled like a plant. Regardless, I was so happy that happened, I came in and wrote this post about it.

Of course, this may very well be the highlight of one of the most uneventful weeks of my life. The most socializing I've done is with my parents, the guy that bags groceries at Raleys, Eleazar and his crew that mow our lawn every week, the mailman, and numerous old ladies in the Kaiser Permanente waiting room. I've learned more about rheumatoid arthritis, hypothyroidism, and diabetes than I'd ever want to know. I am still taking 10 credits of classes online, so I thought I'd be more busy being academic. Wrong. Apparently assignments only take a long time when you have things you'd rather be doing.

For now, the key to my happiness turns out to be a bit of Tinie Tempah and rudbeckia from OSH.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Contacts, Te Odio.

I'm not even going to talk about that game. At least any more than I just did.

Now, some of you may have gone through several years of your life easily, blissfully popping contacts in and out of your eyes. For some reason, I seem to be inherently incapable of putting them in. After some analysis, as I stood for an hour in my bathroom blinking my right contact out over and over, I have concluded there are 4 main reasons I am struggling so. Bryant Milesi, Catherine (my sister), and my optometrist.

First of all, I blame Bryant Milesi. Yes, Bryant, you are the source of my eye-related neurosis. Rewind to October 1992. 4 year old me was in kindergarten at Del Dayo elementary school. I clearly remember the day when Bryant chased me around the classroom flipping his eyelid inside out. It was gross, disturbing, and scarred me for life.

Catherine, second I blame you. Somehow you were able to pick up the most fabulous genes our family has to offer. You can shake out your blonde, straight hair right out of the shower, and it will look better than mine does after spending an hour using a straightener. While I am the only individual in my family with near-sighted vision, I am also the only one with deep set eyes and long thick lashes. Which may be nice when I forget mascara, but they are currently the bane of my existence. Every time I try and go in with a contact there is always eyelid or eyelash in the way.

Optometrist, I don't even know your name, but I blame you too. I would have been perfectly happy with just glasses, but you had to go and tell me that you have had several like 3 year-old patients getting contacts in with no problem. So, now, I can't just give up because I know there are a bunch of toddlers running around doing something I can't. The more stressed out I get thinking about it, the worse I do. So, gracias.

Finally, I blame me. Yeah, it's mostly just my fault.

If anyone has any encouraging contact-related words, advice, anecdotes, or experiences, feel free to call me, skype me, text me, facebook chat me, or track me down at my house. I'll still be here, in my bathroom, using way too many commas, and trying to get these stupid contacts in.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Fifth Reason (Counting Down from 10) The World is Ending

6. Edie Lambert is no longer the main anchor for 6:30 news.
Now, if you lived in the Castillo household, you'd know why this travesty was unendurable. Not only have I heard about this nearly every time I've called home, now that I'm temporarily back here, I hear about it every day. Sometimes multiple times a day. Now, I'm amazed we survived the retirement of Dave and Lois. They are as much a part of the Sacramento life experience for my parents as Emigh's hardware or Raley's and Bel Air.

But yes, instead of Edie's soothing co-anchoring, we have to put up with Kellie MacMullan (DeMarco). Not only does this Kellie not hail from anywhere in the state of California, she also... (gasp)... has a smoker voice (according to my parents). Now, after hearing several descriptions of this lady who apparently looked like the finger-eating-big-haired woman from Mars Attacks, I had to see for myself. Sadly I had to agree. She is not Edie. Ok, so she loves to go visit the children's hospital with her puppy and fight against breast cancer. Is her name Edie Lambert? No. Automatically this means she intends on destroying every fabric of Sacramento normalcy. Even though Gulstan is relatively new, for some reason defying any transcending explanation, it doesn't feel off. Who did he even replace? Has he been here forever?

P.S. I've funnily enough been getting a lot of hits off of google from people googling "Edie Lambert vs Kellie Macmullan (DeMarco)" or "Kellie Macmullan (DeMarco) Edie Lambert".

Is Kellie MacMullan (DeMarco) a Smoker?
Well, now this is a new one I keep receiving google search hits from. Let us analyze... I apologize again that I do not have comments enabled.

- That husky voice
- She's from Colorado
- Smoker "aura"

Non Smoker?
- Pretty
- She's aged well
- She's never smoked on camera
- She doesn't like cancer
- Married (as of 11/24/12 at least)
- According to this reliable Yahoo! Answers question, posing a widely sought after inquiry "Does Kellie DeMarco smoke?" bgee2001ca says no.

Perhaps the world will never know.

UPDATE 6/11/12: I emailed KCRA asking if Kellie MacMullan smoked and received the eloquent response from one Anzio M Williams reading "no".

Just so everyone out there knows, I mean no offense to Kellie MacMullan (DeMarco). I just prefer Edie. I mean, I've basically been watching channel three news from when I was in the womb. As a whole, us Sacramentoeans don't handle change well. I mean, either Raleys and Bel Air brought Frank McMinn back or they found someone with an eerily similar voice to prevent a riot.

UPDATE 11/24/12: I have been made aware during my stay at home for Thanksgiving that Kellie MacMullan is now Mrs. Kellie DeMarco. I have added in her new last name to accurately reflect this. Congratulations to her and her new husband. 

Also, Edie sometimes anchors the news along with Kellie or with Gulstan. I have no idea what my parents were so worried about, apart from my mom and dad's continued assertion of "I don't know, I just don't like her".

UPDATE 1/1/14 I am home again for the holidays and have learned a great deal from my parents about their evolving opinion towards Mrs. DeMarco. Also, I have been getting many many search hits from "Kellie DeMarco Pregnant?". Firstly, my parents have started to take a greater liking to her. Especially when compared to Chris Riva, who clearly struggles. Also, secondly, my mom keeps turning to me when she's on the news and whispers 'do you think she's pregnant?'. I agree this is an immensely personal thing, but I have to conclude that she likely is. And congrats to her if she is. Or isn't. You know, either way it's cool.

UPDATE 7/10/2014 Based on the various conversations with my parents on their favorite topics of the drought, the Kings, and KCRA, I hear that Kellie DeMarco and Edie Lambert had weird twin pregnancies, and new babies! My parents aren't quite sure how they feel about the female fill-in.

UPDATE 11/25/2015 I am home again for Thanksgiving. Apparently Kellie has completely weaved her way into the hearts of my family. While watching the news tonight (both the 5 and 6 o'clock editions), there was an expression of mild acceptance. And compliments about her sweater choices.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

The Brave Little Toaster

Who hasn't heard the supposedly inspirational phrase "you miss 100% of the shots you don't take" at least one point in their life? I know I was told this many many times as a child while being prodded to do everything from ballet to rock climbing. I think back on all of the things I would have missed out on if my parents had just let me wuss out throughout my childhood. Yes, sometimes we will still miss 100% of the shots we do take, but at least we'll get a bit of an arm workout in the process. While you may walk away from your failed attempts with a bruised ego, you will have rock hard deltoids.

Now, I am not looking for any positive affirmation, because I truly do know my limitations. I'm a terrible bowler. I am not really that funny. I can't draw a straight line to save my life. I am super shy. I can only play the trumpet mediocrely. I've got naturally boring brown hair and brown eyes. I will almost always be in last place playing mario kart, after driving backwards about 3 minutes. One thing I can say for myself is that I will try. Even when I know that failure is not only plausible but nearly inevitable, I will do all that I can to at least attempt. I do not let fear stop me. It isn't that I am not easily scared... sometimes just thinking about things I have to do raises my heartrate about 500 bpm. It is that I am able to put this behind me and keep trucking.

The thought of flying into Portland by myself this last weekend was frankly terrifying. I had never been there before, and had to use public transportation to get everywhere that first day. Now, where I'm from, you can get shot just looking at a light rail. But I did it. I bought myself special 3 dollar de-stress water, I found my way, I carried my 3.4 ton backpack alone around the city for 6 hours and I showed up at the end of the day alive and with some new friends (that's you Bruce and Sugar)

I think back on even just the past few months. If I had let every fear of failure, embarrassment, or injury hold me back, I wouldn't have done anything. But I didn't. So what if you know you're going to lose the game, or if he doesn't like you back, or if you know you're just going to look like a dork? Bravery is knowing you're probably going to fail, but trying anyway in hopes that one freak shot towards the basket will go in.