What is the meaning of serenity?  Of surrender?  In my head these days, it feels like these two of these concepts are linked…that I cannot find my serenity without surrendering to some unnameable form.  I am recently engaged and a new doctoral student.  Although profoundly different in terms of role and expectations, one aspect of myself that remains the same, is a constant feeling that I am not enough or just not quite there. I’m constantly hoping for more, for better.  Am I searching for perfection?  Or am I simply insatiable?  On top of all of this, I am caught up in the mist of expectations that I didn’t know I had.  That in order for this enagement to feel real several things need to happen: 1) A ring that I may or may not have picked out should be in a box and presented to me; 2) plans to take engagement pictures should be made; 3) a date for the wedding or round about date should be set in motion; and the list of things go on.  I watch wedding shows like its my second job and oogle pictures of friends and acquaintances on facebook (before promptly deleting) absorbing style, colors, exuberant joy and other fine details. So alas, here I am with my mixed bag of expectations, hopes and dreams…. unfulfilled and justifiably incomplete. As a person who typically runs against the grain of tradition, I find myself in a bit of a rabbit hole, surrounded by all these tidbits of other people’s happiness. My remaining question seems to be:  now how the heck do I find my own happiness in this mess?  Surrender to the will of my higher power and the universe in order to embrace change and the discomfort of transitions to allow the growth process to take its hold on me.  Maybe in that place between surrender and struggle, I may find my serenity. 

white flag

Reaction photo at the DMV.

by  Serge Gainsbourg

1291 plays

***WARNING, this post talks about pee, a lot, don’t read if you are a TMI person***

I’ve been offered a position as a substitute teacher at a fancy schmancy private school in Lower Manhattan. Whilst I haven’t fully accepted yet, as I am still waiting to hear back from others, I’ve decided to go ahead with the process of accepting. As a non-resident alien I’ve had my fingerprints taken in Paris and my retina scanned whenever I enter the U.S., then upon graduating I had to have my fingerprints done with the Department of Education in order to apply for certification. And now, this new possible job requires me to be fingerprinted by the Department of Investigations as well as to undergo a drug test. There should be a rule where people who are so “in the system” could just automatically get citizenship, because my name is on the lists baby!

So this morning I walked down to Bowery Street and entered a tiny lobby that’s next to a giant Chinese jewelry store. I finished my green tea outside just to make sure I’d have enough pee pee in me, and watched a dozen or so people go in and out of the building. Most of them Asian, as there are numerous Asian/Chinese doctors, dentists, orthodontists in the same building, along with one Tall Black Guy. By the time the elevator took its sweet time down to the lobby, all six of us, including TBG squished ourselves in the tiny elevator and up we went. I was surprised all except one got off on the same floor, and after losing another to some MD, the four of walked in to Lab Corp, Fantastic Four style. The waiting room was nice and bright, rather empty at first, with only a Jewish mama, toddler and stroller. So empty that the Jewish mama felt it was safe to leave her purse open on a seat and her phone on another seat close to the door, don’t worry I wasn’t about to commit any crime now that my name is all over the system. We signed in by ourselves and all of a sudden the receptionist and a Cheerful Lab Technician appeared to give out forms and instruct us to sit and wait.

I played a quick game of Temple Run and by the time I looked up, the people had multiplied! CLT came out and asked TBG if he was ready to go in, telling him that he should go only if he feels the urgency because the lab was closing in an hour and he shouldn’t waste any pee if he couldn’t get it over the label. TBG said he’d need another minute or two and went back to refill his cup at the water cooler. CLT looked at me and I said I could do with another minute and decided I should get some water too. A few minutes later TBG headed in with CLT whilst I took my second little paper cup of water. Not long after TBG came out with CLT reassuring him that it’s OK, it was humid and he could drink more water and try again in a few minutes. I looked away so he wouldn’t see me grinning. I thought to myself, “Alright, I got this.” When CLT asked if I was ready, I said, “Sure!” with confidence.

I felt the urge to pee, really I did, sadly I only made it to the bottom quarter of the label. CLT asked me to wait as she took my pee sample out to ask someone else if it’d be enough. The whole time I was thinking, please don’t take it to the receptionist as everyone in the waiting room would see not only my pee but the fact that I failed to make it over the label. And sure enough she took it to the receptionist, who is probably not just a receptionist. Anyway receptionist said, “No” and I went back to the waiting area and took a seat by the water cooler. TBG smiled at me and I smiled back and said, “Failed!” TBG and I became buddies as we took turns refilling our cup at the cooler.

Eventually TBG went back inside and when CLT came out I thought I was ready to give it another go, I mean after 5+ cups of water, I was ready. CLT asked me to wait a bit as TBG was still in the bathroom, when TBG came out, I couldn’t look at him, he couldn’t do it… CLT was very empathetic and told him it’s alright that he could have another drink or ten and wait a few more minutes.

I went in and I did. Although I made it past the label, I had to say I was somewhat disappointed that it wasn’t way past the label. Nevertheless, I came out with a huge smile, “voila!” I plonked my cup gently on the table, CLT congratulated me and did a little happy dance! After signing and initialing the forms I walked out to the waiting room offered TBG a supportive smile.

Now that I’m home it seems all the water I drank are making it’s way out of me, as I have peed about six times in the hour and a half that I’ve been home. Fun!

The Olympics are finally here and I’ve been having a blast gawking some of the hottest athletes around. As most of you know I am a complete lazy ass, the idea of me, dating a sportsman is just ridiculous! One time this guys asked if I wanted to go play soccer with him, as a date, I laughed in his face… But looking at the fittest of them all doesn’t hurt, does it? Sadly it does… Every time I see a good looking guy I make a mental note of his name and a reminder to look him up on the internet later on, and almost always when I google his name pictures of his Ugly Sports Face will appear under the images tab.

Here’s proof of some Hot Athletes with USF.

Yahel Castillo


Marcel Nguyen


Bjorn Barrefors


And this is why I do not do sports…

Sandra don’t got nuin on Elfie.

Elfie and Foz Adventures at the airport. Take 2. 

Opaque  by  andbamnan