A Day in the Life…St. Patrick’s Day

Oxalis acetosella

Oxalis acetosella (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The story might be a couple of weeks late, but it’s still March.  Cheers to the Irish!

The alarm on my phone beeps loudly into my ear.  I’ve purposely placed my phone under my pillow, so there would be no chance of sleeping through the alarm.  It’s 6 A.M.  Any other day of the year, including Christmas and my birthday, I would not wake up this early in the morning.  Of course, I’ve had to wake up earlier for work occasionally, but I am grumpier than a mama bear in winter on those days.  This day though, March 17th, I quite literally jump out of bed to start my day.  The house is still dark, the sun barely up in the sky.  My friends are all sleeping in various places.  This is also one of the few days we still get together, putting our busy lives to the side for one day of frivolous, ever ridiculous, behavior.

I step around the sleeping bodies, around the air mattresses and suitcases and jump into the shower.  I let the water run cold for a few minutes to shock the last bit of sleep from behind my eyes.  Not only do I start this day early because it is my favorite day, but be

cause it’s necessary.  Sharing one shower with eight or more girls, depending on how many people could make it out, means shower time must start early if we want to be ready to go before 5 P.M.

When I step out of the shower, some of the girls are already waking up.  Coffee is brewing—with Bailey’s of course, and breakfast is about to begin.  Every year, we make green eggs, green pancakes, EXTRA bacon and a few other sides we decide to make that year.  It’s always a mouth-watering, hearty breakfast, the perfect meal to start the holiday.

I quickly throw on pair of sweats as the next chick hops into the shower.  I start pouring cups of coffee—half Bailey’s—and passing them around.  The girls who are STILL asleep, I quickly pounce on, yelling at them in a terrible Irish accent and jumping on their beds.  By 8 A.M. breakfast is ready for devouring and everyone has showered.  With breakfast, everyone has a choice of drink, as long as it includes alcohol.  This may sound like a bit of a drinking problem, but on St. Patrick’s Day, it’s perfectly okay to start your day with a drink.  Choices include: Bailey’s Coffee, Mimosa, Whiskey or just go ahead and crack open a beer.

I quickly scarf down my breakfast, burning the roof of my mouth, but I don’t have time to sit and eat.  My chore for the morning is about to begin.  No

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t only do we dress up in various shades of green, I paint up everyone’s faces as well.  I’ve always enjoyed doing other people’s makeup, and holidays like St Paddy’s or Mardi Gras are great for getting creative with it.  I set up my makeup station in the living room, spreading out the various eye shadows, eyeliner, glitters and more.  I am a bit of a perfectionist when it comes to doing makeup, so even if the outcome is a crazy leprechaun face, I take special care to make it look just so.  I take a few gulps of my beer as I let the liquid liner dry; and one of my friends brings me a shot of whiskey.  Another friend brings me a jello shot.

Jello shots are one of my favorite treats about this day.  Not to brag, but the jello shots I make are delicious; orange jello with Whipped Cream Vodka, and green jello with Malibu.  We made them the night before, around 150 little cups of green and orange taking up all the space in the fridge.  By the time I finish everyone’s makeup, most of the jello shots are gone.  I can handle a bit of alcohol before I get sloppy, so I have no problem finishing everyone’s makeup with precision.  I look around at all the sparkling little leprechaun’s I’ve created and smile, perhaps a little drunkenly.  I smile again to myself, to have so many good friends to spend this day with.  Not many people are so lucky.  Luck of the Irish, perhaps?

We each grab another jello shot and cheers to us, cheers to friends, parades, parties and all the memories we were about to make, but probably won’t remember.  I take the shot, and forget the rest.

Slainte!

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The Good & Bad of Writing for Free

I recently read an article about the advantages and disadvantages of writing for free in an expensive and money-hungry world.  The article  started off with a man who was asked to write an article for a publication, sans payment, and this man happened to be a paid writer.  He wrote back saying he would not do such a thing, when his writing was his source of income.  The article goes on to talk about how the average paid writer was able to become said paid writer, because he started out with a bank roll in his pocket.  It’s disheartening to think that the writer’s that make it big are mostly there because they had someone (i.e. mom and dad) paying their bills when they first took that internship in NYC or other expensive city.  The writers who are trying to get into the business without anyone paying their bills will forever have a harder time getting anywhere, because they have to work 40 hours a week to eat, have a hot shower and a roof to sleep under.  When that writer comes home at the end of the day, sleep is the only thing that sounds appealing, not writing a 1,500 word essay to a magazine that won’t pay them for their efforts.  However, newbies in any business know that any acknowledgement of their work is usually worth the effort.  That one free show you perform or short article you write could get you recognized by someone who could get you that dream job.

I’m not exactly in the bank roller class, but I’m not without help if I need it.  It’s a tough position to take a stand on because I don’t want to stereotype all rich kids into being bad writers who only making it because Daddy’s money bought them an internship.  I think writing is a talent anyone can have, rich or poor, but I do agree that it is much harder to move up in the business without knowing somebody who knows somebody.

Then again…there are those random success stories like J.K.Rowling‘s, who was supposedly eating paper for dinner before Harry Potter changed her life.  Hopefully when someone Google’s my name in twenty years, I’ll have a similar story.  Although, if I can keep eating real food over paper, that would be really great.  Fingers crossed.

 

Check out the article here: http://gawker.com/5989280/when-people-write-for-free-who-pays

Ode to an Online “Window Shopping” Enthusiast

As a financially challenged twenty-something trying to make a living in a big city, keeping up with fashion trends by buying new and expensive clothes can be difficult.  And by difficult, I mean almost impossible.  By the time I save enough money to buy a dress I’ve been eyeing for weeks, the dress is no longer available or there is something new, gorgeous and expensive that I want.

It’s a rough life, I know…but something I find that helps me get through these hard times is window shopping, online and out in the world. I love and generally prefer window shopping online.  I’ve got about fifteen items, give or take a skirt, in my shopping cart for several different websites.  Even though I don’t actually buy any of it, it’s fun to browse the websites and see what is out there.  In doing this, you might actually find that you have items hidden in a box somewhere that are similar to the new things in your shopping cart.  Especially now that vintage is in, dressing up old rags is the way to go.  So when you find that old t-shirt with a crazy, fat cat wearing sunglasses on it, don’t throw it out!  Instead, throw on some ripped skinny jeans, neon flats and flashy earrings and poof! you have a cute and casual outfit for a Sunday Funday.  Another closet to raid for the vintage trend is your mother’s or even your grandmother’s! Snag those floral printed skirts from your grandmother’s hippie days or a pretty brooch to pair with a simple blouse for a flirty happy hour after work.

Window shopping online is kind of like using Pinterest to find new recipes.  Check out what styles are trending on all those clothing sites and then dig under your bed for that plain jane dress you thought was never going to work; and watch it make a comeback with a new emerald-green belt.

I will admit, I recently caved and bought this super cute, 50’s style, royal purple dress from Modcloth.com.  The dress sat there, in my shopping cart, taunting me for weeks and I finally bought it to wear to my friend’s birthday party.  But what made the outfit come together, was an old neon purple headband with silky black feathers, which I found hiding in a box in my apartment.  Combine the feathered headband, my favorite nude pumps, the new purple dress and voilà! Perfect party outfit and a great night out with friends.