Thursday, January 31, 2013

Just a quick question.

Have you all gotten into The Lizzie Bennet Diaries? It's amazing. They are a series of youtube videos; a modern adaptation of Pride and Prejudice. And I can't get enough. If you're not familiar, I suggest you go here: and get started. It's all over youtube, tumblr, and twitter.

If you have, we should talk about it. Because my head is exploding from everything this cast and crew is doing. It's not only a really well done adaptation, but a brilliant use of social media. ALSO IT IS LIKE CRACK. Just saying. 

Go get started. Seriously, go. 

Someday, when I don't have a million posts on tumblr to look at, we can talk about the perfect man I created in my head. BUT FIRST ALL THE LIZZIE BENNET. 

Monday, January 14, 2013

Now I just need a talking umbrella and a magic bag.

Well, readers, you may have noticed that I went missing for the holidays. Don't worry, it wasn't a Lifetime Movie/evening news kind of missing, I was just on vacation. I was in Finland, where there was a very real possibility of freezing to death. It was -17 F the week before I was there, so it was a serious concern. I took a lot of layers. Luckily, it warmed up and hovered around the freezing point for a good portion of my stay. I survived! 

Since I never have a man in my bed, there are two times in life when I am extra diligent about having clean sheets and laundry. (Calm down, I wash things regularly, but I'm talking off-schedule, hyper aware here. I understand hygiene.) 1. When I go on vacation, and 2. the New Year. 

The first is because there is nothing that kills a vacation buzz faster than coming home to a shithole. When I leave, unless I'm flying out the door for an emergency, I take the time to do laundry, make the bed, put things away. I come home to the calm of a tidy place, confident that the only things out of place will be my mail and gifts my sister leaves. (More mail than gifts WHICH IS WEIRD, TWIN.) Plus, there is room for my unpacked suitcase to hang out for days at a time once I return. Bonus. 

The second is because I believe in fresh starts. Some people call it voodoo, but I like starting a new year clean, dressed, and with my shit in order, figuratively speaking. I think the way you spend NYE can cast a shadow on your year, and you probably don't but that's cool. Believe whatever you like, right? I think if you spend the dawn of a new year in your sweats getting embarrassingly piss drunk by yourself, you're telling the universe that's cool, that's how you roll. I don't tempt fate, guys. I don't care about going to big parties or anything, I just care about who I surround myself with--it's always good people. 

What this all comes down to is that when I left on Christmas night, things were in order around here--that is to say, my belongings were in order. I can't say the same about my affairs. (So to speak.) 

2012 was a big year for me. A scary one. I never told you, but I made a big decision during the summer. I spent a lot of time thinking it over and figuring out the right thing to do. It wasn't fun, but it was necessary. All that thinking resulted in me quitting my job at the end of the summer. It might have been foolish, but I haven't regretted it once since. I love a lot about my profession, and I'll always want to be involved in it in some way, but it's not where my heart is. My career was too young to deal with being unhappy with the whole system. (And I was on the verge of spending a lot of money on a masters degree for it.) So, I took a leap...and resigned. 

I have no idea what's next. That's partly terrifying and partly thrilling. A friend referred to me as Mary Poppins for twenty-somethings. I am actually madly in love with the thought. I've decided that it's going to help form my 2013...that's how I'm going to do things. It'll be all What Would Mary Poppins Do? over here, until I have a better idea. Get ready. I'll let you know what's next. Any ideas? 

Pretty much.

Thursday, January 03, 2013

Better than internet dating...

Where have you guys been? I've been looking everywhere for you!

Oh, no, sorry, that's me. I've been missing lately. In all fairness, I've been in Finland, after some busy holidays. (I'm here until next week.)
I know what you might be thinking, if you're anything like my bank. "Finland again?" Yes, Judgemental Phone Guy, again. I was here this summer and have returned to visit friends and potentially freeze to death. So far, the weather has been awesome...not much colder than I'm used to and it's quite beautiful.

My experiences in Finland have been super interesting and eye opening. (I've never traveled anywhere before where looking at the language left me totally perspective for me.)

This is not going to be a cultural experiences post, though. I could write pages, but that is not even close to why I came here today. A friend here showed me the greatest thing this weekend.

Teletext. On the TV, you open up Teletext and there are pages of text--news headlines, weather, sports, entertainment...that kind of thing. I'm told it's present in other parts of Europe as well, but it was new for me. It's actually been around since the mid-70s, if Wikipedia is to be believed. (Sure why not.) AND I AM REALLY UPSET THIS DOESN'T EXIST IN THE UNITED STATES. 

Again, I know what you might be thinking. "Amanda, if you need to know the headlines, pull out your smart phone, get your head out of your ass." BUT THIS IS SO MUCH BETTER. 

Not necessarily for all my sports news needs (HA!) but because of another feature of Teletext. 


Yes, a chat feature. Users can pay 1€ and send a text message to all of Finland's Teletext audience. There are different pages, including one called "family page" which I came to learn just meant "regular chatting without any of the weird stuff". As far as we could tell, the rest of the pages...are for weird stuff. Some people were sending messages about looking for someone to talk to or being lonely. Ok. Some were more specific, looking for young Asian girl to talk to. Some wanted young women to do particular things THIS DOES NOT MEAN CATCH A MOVIE OR HAVE DINNER, FYI. They include their phone numbers, because there's nothing bad that can happen when asking for a young woman with a firm ass to text your number. (This is exactly why we can't have this in the US. If we had access to this, you'd be looking at the plot of the next Lifetime movie.) 

My favorite message, which I could very well have responded to, was a nice, reliable, gentle Finnish man (self-described, so it's anybody's guess what he's really like) looking for a foreign woman 24-40 to start a serious relationship. Seems legit. 

I have to tell you, this changed my outlook on Finnish people. Not because I thought badly of them or anything, but because for the rest of the night, and even today, I've been looking at every person I pass and wondering, "Do you use Teletext?" Every middle aged man who passes me is a suspect in the Serious Foreign Relationship Mystery. I keep wondering who is using this service?? I mean, 1€ is expensive! And it's totally anonymous, unless you post your number, so it could be ANYBODY writing these messages! What if it's your mother? Your boss? The guy driving your bus? And say you respond because hey, you're a young woman with a firm ass! AND IT'S YOUR DAD. What if your best friend is the guy looking to do weird stuff with a young Asian woman? You can't recover from that kind of surprise in a relationship. 

So, I pose to you this question, readers: would it be better to respond to a message and find that your parent posted it, or post a message and get your parent responding? I can't decide which is worse. 

Finland, you still hold so many mysteries. Thanks for being such a surprise.