Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Torn (not in the Natalie Imbruglia way)

If you remember that song at all, which was basically her only hit, then you're probably around my age. But before I continue, let me warn that this will be basically be an un-tampered-with, stream of consciousness rant. And the only reason I'm not keeping this in any sort of private journal or anything is because I know for a fact that I am not the only person who feels this way. And I also don't really give a damn anymore.

So back to being around my age. I'm not even a year out of my bachelor's degree and I still don't have a so-called "real job." I can't for the life of me figure out how much this should really bother me. Other friends are at differing levels. Some are hardcore driven to have a "good" job and be successful, some are not really worried at all. I've never been career-driven. Having a good job would not be something that would make or break my overall happiness. Yeah, it would really help with my student loans etc, but I don't want my lack of a "real" job to rule my life right now. I have a job right now that manages to pay the bills, but of course I'm trying to find something better. I just don't know what to make of all the pressure to get a better job. Why is there so much pressure? My parents seem so disappointed in me and that makes me disappointed in myself, but I don't understand why. Why should I be disappointed in myself? I don't know what the world expects of people my age.

And speaking of that. I hate that in school we're all basically told that if we do well and graduate college, we'll get a good job and have 2.5 kids and a white picket fence. And anyone without some sort of degree is looked down upon, and people who don't go through all the steps in order are looked down upon too. I hate all of the outside influences. The expectation you'll be married and have kids and live in a suburb and have a day job. I want so badly to ignore it all but it's virtually impossible because, mostly, I hate disappointing people. I want my parents to be proud of me. But it doesn't seem like they are. People make me feel like if I don't have a secure job then my future is basically garbage. I don't WANT to feel that way. I just want to live. But then saying so makes me feel like I look lazy or something. And I can't just be like, screw you all, I'm going to Italy. As much as I would absolutely adore that. But I can't. Because I don't like hurting people even when the alternative hurts me.

So what to do? I just don't feel like the kind of person who wants to stuff myself into a shitty, but well paying job and be virtually miserable for most of my life. If it's a job in my field then of course I wouldn't be miserable, but those seem hard to come by. Why does it seem frowned upon in America to be happy? Lol I don't know. I just don't like the "live to work" mentality. It's not how I operate at all. "I have to be productive and successful" blah blah blah. No, no you don't. But if that's what makes you happy then go for it. Eventually I need to figure out what makes me happy. I feel extremely caged right now, even though I'm perfectly free.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

In Which I Embrace My Longtime T-Shirt Obsession

When I was in high school, there was a curious obsession with customized t-shirts. It didn't matter the occasion. Is there a cool teacher who has a catch phrase and says it all the time? Make it a shirt! Do the seniors think they're better than everyone and need to make five shirts throughout the year to prove it? Yes, yes they do. Shirts for normal things like our sports teams were blown way out of proportion, although we did have a really bitchin' sports program, to my general ire.* But there was absolutely nothing that got kids excited in my high school like the decision to design t-shirts for something. Since then**, I've basically become a t-shirt fanatic. But that doesn't mean I buy any dumbass "funny" t-shirt I see. No, it has to mean something. For example, last February during Pittsburgh's Snowmageddon/Snowpocalypse/SnOMG, I bought two t-shirts that marked said occasion. One actually included a Twitter hashtag and says something along the lines of "I survived #snomgpgh2010." The other involves a snowman and something about Snowmageddon, and I feel weird wearing them because I want them to last forever.***

Now, this is where comes in. Not only are the shirts actually good, but I'm supporting artists at the same time. It's like when I buy prints from deviantart, which always makes me feel good. So yeah, I bought that shirt above for $10 I think. "Foam Monster In Emotional Reunion With Severed Limb." Half the reason I bought it was for the title, half because it was just a great picture. I couldn't refuse a title like that. This easily could have been named something unremarkable, like "Foam Finger" or "Foam Finger Monster" or something. Maybe I'm just a huge geek for clever writing.****

I also bought this other one lmao. I have an old picture of a vaccuum sitting next to a fan, and this reminded me of it. The vacuum is saying "You blow" and the fan is saying "You suck." Stupidly clever, but this image had the same effect. So what the hell. I decided I'd only buy one or two things because the rest of my pay and tax refund is all going to bills. So I bought my shirts. Now, however, I'm obsessed with trolling the Threadless website and picking out which designs I'm buying next. Aah, such is life.

* Because it allowed for the girls volleyball team to consistently spike volleyballs in my face in gym class. And then I'd go to calculus with a red welt on my cheek, and I'd nod gravely at my friend, who would also nod gravely in silent recognition.

** It feels like I was last in high school in the Triassic Age. I can even imagine which teachers the dinosaurs are. But since (hopefully) nobody from my high school reads this, I won't elaborate.
*** Don't judge me. I'm a pack rat and like my stuff nice.
**** I am.