Tuesday, December 27, 2011

The Ankle Saga: A Story In Pictures

So. Okay. OH MY GOD, I have started this blog post 80 times and deleted it and started it over, because I have no idea what to talk about right now.

Do I talk about how I rolled my ankle on the way back to Chicago? Yes, let's go there, shall we? In fact, let's go there with visual aids. Because everyone likes visual aids.

On my way to the airport, I walk out the door, down two blocks...

...and then as I'm lifting my suitcase over a curb I also step in a small pothole. There was a crunching noise. It was not awesome.

After about 5 straight minutes of whispered profanity, the girl at the bus stop asked me if I was okay. I told her yes.

When the bus came, I hobbled to the back where I thought I could stretch out. I put my foot up on my suitcase for...blood flow...or whatever reason it is that you elevate a twisted ankle. But then the bus actually filled up, and I kept getting dirty looks from people who assumed I was spreading out on public transportation. I wanted to shout, "NO! I usually mock those people! I am just like you! I AM NOT AN ANIMAL! I AM A HUMAN BEING!" But I couldn't say any of that because I was concentrating so hard on keeping myself from making wounded moaning noises. I refused to be the person at the back of the bus and MOANING.

Eventually I got to the airport...

And then THIS happened.

I had to sit down on the ground like a 3 year old to take off my shoes at security.

Of COURSE I was at the furthest gate. OF COURSE I was.

In Economy with limited space and an ankle hurting like holy hell, every time I crossed my legs I kept hitting the girl next to me. She was not amused. But for some reason, "Sorry, I twisted my ankle" didn't seem like a valid excuse for why I couldn't stick to my own assigned spot.

In the end, I made it and hobbled into the arms of my parents who came to pick me up.

Luckily my family has twisted their ankles so often that we were stocked with fancy Ace bandages and ice packs. Apparently my clumsiness is genetic. And at least I had an excuse to sit on the couch and demand other people feed me cookies and milk. Nothing like being surrounded by the people you love in a warm house with plenty of food (and no joke, 5 kinds of butter) to nurse you back to health.

And hey! On a separate note--check out that survey over on the upper right. Let me know what you think. Totally anonymous even to me, so you can answer even if you think you're a stalker for being here. (By the way, you are not. OR ARE YOU?...No, you aren't.) So give it to me straight. Twitter: Y/N/Meh?

Monday, December 26, 2011


I'm curious about something, and I'd like your opinion. So I've set up a little anonymous poll over there on the right to get some answers. What do you think??

Thursday, December 22, 2011

My Penultimate Birthday

Welp! Yesterday was my birthday. I'm 27 now. And this year...I'm actually fine with it. I haven't been okay with my new age since I turned 22. But this year? Totally taking it in stride. This is for three reasons:
1. I've come to grips with the fact that I'm in my "late twenties", and as far as that goes, 27 seems young and spritely.
2. From what everyone says (and what I've seen firsthand), your thirties are when you come into your own and really figure out who you are and what you're doing. And I would like to know both of those things. So I don't mind getting closer to that.
3. It's the final year of my, and everyone's lives. Because the world will end on my birthday next year, and there are crappy Web 1.0 websites to prove it.

This year has been interesting. It started out mind-numbingly dull. This caused me to hitch up my bootstraps (or whatever) and start adventuring. I took improv classes, comedy writing classes, and then moved across the country. Which, considering my awkward neuroses, basically means it's been a year of self-doubt.

Curious about how I felt this time last year, I checked out my birthday blog entry for 2010. What I found was a list of goals. Since I wrote that list, I've expanded the goals to a Life List, which has grown to 75 since I posted it. But the first list of goals were things I was hoping to do within 2 years. I'm now halfway through those two years, so I thought I'd revisit the list. New comments are in italics.

Emily's List Of Young People Goals:

-Learn how to knit (Hmm. I started to crochet again but never counted my stitches and things went downhill from there. But there's a ball of yarn on my dresser, ever reminding me to pick it up again. Verdict: probable.)
-Take beginner photography classes, then take good photos with a good camera (I'm partway to completing this goal. I bought a Groupon for a class that doesn't expire until May. Problem is: still don't have a camera.)
-Improv classes (I did this one! I did this one! And I want to keep doing it!)
-Sculpting classes (I haven't done this one but I'd still like to. Problem is, I'd rather keep doing improv/comedy related classes. My Ghost fantasies may have to wait a while.)
-Dance classes (BAH ha ha ha ha ha....oh, ME.)

-Go to Scotland, find your ancestor's castle. (See, the problem with a lot of stuff on this list is that I didn't know what a precarious position my job was in at the time. I was running on the assumption that I had JUST been hired and there was no way we would lose the account and I would be laid off. Silly Emily. So trusting.)
-Go to Italy, eat a lot of pasta and cream. (I mean, these things are definitely on the list. But they probably won't be happening as quickly as my adorable little hopeful heart had wanted.)
-Go to San Francisco--Francisco! That's fun to say. (Well I can certainly check this one off the list with great aplomb.)

-Go on a production shoot outside of Chicago
-Get promoted, earn what I think I deserve
-Write an ad that everyone loves

-Pay off a big student loan chunk (OR defer your loans because you're unemployed. SIMILAR.)
-Buy a car (kcchhh...pfff...shah....)
-Become a roller skater (The more I think about this one, the more I fear falling and breaking my arms and knees. Also, now that I'm in San Francisco, the amount of hills makes this one a lot less likely. Sorry, 26-year-old me, I think this one is done-zo.)
-Be more stylish (I'm still determined that this will happen for me one day. I'll have money and I'll buy clothes from SUPER fancy places, like the Gap and Nordstrom. I'll have an infinity scarf that'll look really cute on me and I'll wear skirts and just generally look more like Zooey Deschanel.)
-Make more Julia Child recipes (Hmm. I STILL haven't done this yet. I just need to face my fears and channel my inner Julie/Julia.)
-Find an apartment with a reading nook for weekends--and then read on the weekends. (Well, I wouldn't say I have a "nook" but I do have bay windows? Which is closer? I don't read on the weekends but that is changing TODAY my friends. TODAY. Or tomorrow, or sometime soon.)

So all in all, I think I'm generally still on the right track. An actual income will help me accomplish a lot more of these. The question is: what will I accomplish in the next year? You know, before the world ends?

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

I Want A Tattoo

Tattoos and I have an interesting relationship. It's like skydiving: it sounds cool in concept, it seems like the kind of thing that everyone should try once, but if I realistically think about it, there's no way I'm doing that crap.

One time in college while I was working at a sandwich shop, a grizzly old man came in. He had a fuzzy, wibbly achor tattoo on his forearm which I thought was possibly the most badass thing I'd ever seen, because you know that thing was hand-chiseled by a fellow navy man.

The first time I ever considered that I might get a tattoo myself was after seeing the episode where Rachel gets a heart on her lower back/hip:

Because I'm pretty sure that's the first time I realized tattoos could be for non-sailors/women in the circus.

So of course at first I wanted a heart tatoo on my lower back. Because I was a very original teenager, and because the word "tramp stamp" hadn't been invented yet. Or if it had, I hadn't heard of it. But eventually this idea turned into me wanting a heart that was made out of the letters of my middle name: Joy. I told Teenage Boyfriend about this, and he designed one for me. Which of course ruined it for life. I've made some relationship mistakes in my day, but at least one of them has NOT been to get a tattoo that reminds me of a boy, no matter how convinced I was that we would be married and have billions of children.

So that was out. And for seven years or so, I hadn't come up with another tattoo I would want. There was nothing that I cared about enough to emblazon it on my body and know I would still care about it at forty.

Until recently.

I hold in my possession (ie my brain) one giant, awesome idea...and I don't know how to make it: I want a tattoo that says "Keep going" if you look at it from one way and "slow down" if you look at it from the other way. Like how this Princess Bride cover mind-blowingly reads upside down and right side up.

I think it would be rad. And I NEVER say rad, so you know I'm serious about it. I also like the idea of just the words "keep going" written on my hand so it looks best while you're writing, like in this position.

I also don't really know what that would look like either.

And before you get all "yikes that sounds like a terrible idea" because I know you and that is what you are saying, consider the idea of white or light ink, and consider that it could be small and classy.

I'm not going to get a tattoo now because I am in a fragile state and I'm pretty sure 99% of my ideas right now are ill-informed. So I'm holding off. Especially because I kinda just want to say EFF THIS and go with a connect-the-dots tattoo.

But again, small and classy. Like a little connect-the-dots kermit on my inner arm. COME ON, IT COULD BE GOOD, YOU DON'T KNOW.

What tattoo ideas do you have? What do you wish you had the guts to do but never will? What have you already had done? Regrets? No regrets? Comments!

Monday, December 19, 2011


Okay, I'm going to have to level with you guys. I just spent all weekend trying to write a normal post. I mean, as normal as it gets around these parts.

But the truth is that I'm homesick. And I want to talk about it. Because I blame Jesus.

Yeah, I said it. I mean really if you think about it, Christmas makes EVERYONE homesick, by its very nature. Even people who are currently home start to ache for the home they once had.

So now I find myself in a city I don't know with weather I don't know, with people I don't know. I even find myself getting mad at crazy people on the SF buses for not being the same as the crazy people on the Chicago buses. It's a deep homesickness.

Then add in the fact that it's Christmastime, a time when I should be surrounded by family and friends and instead find myself feeling incredibly alone. I knew this time would come, that there would be a point where the newness would wear off and I'd still be without all the familiar faces. I was aware it would happen--but I forgot to factor in Christmas, so now the homesickness goes to eleven.

I'm struck by how often I don't feel like myself, but like some really boring version of myself who spends all day watching every Stefon Weekend Update sketch and forgets to brush her teeth. Sometimes I think that just forcing myself to get up and shower and walk out the door will help. And then I'm surprised when it doesn't. Then I'm just sad...and outside. Then I get annoyed at slow walkers and people who don't leash their dogs (because WHO DO YOU THINK YOU ARE--shhh, breathe, Emily. They aren't here anymore. They can't hurt you.) I guess going outside only helped when my problem was laziness, not actual emotional distress.

Anyone have advice on how to climb back out? Is "time" the only solution? I hate when "time" is the only solution.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Pinterest, Hot Chocolate, Stitching, And A Whale For Good Measure

I have a few things to tell you, none of which have anything to do with anything else. So I'm just going to go ahead and lay them on the table.

1.) I just joined Pinterest, so naturally my life is over. Pinterest combines two of my favorite things: sharing stupid things, and categorizing stuff. When I was young, my mom set me free in a department store, and I spent my time organizing a bunch of rings by color. Over a decade later, I realized the rings were organized by size and I just ruined some poor store clerk's night.

So yeah, I like to organize. But now it's organizing pictures into "crafts I'll never do" and "food I'll never make" and "wedding stuff" because despite my rampant feminism, I'm ONE OF THOSE. Sue me--sometimes I see cool wedding stuff by accident (cough when I'm surfing wedding blogs cough) and I don't want to forget those ideas. Like this one!

Flowers made of paper?! Paper made of flowers?! COME ON!

2.) Joe and I just walked across the street and payed $2 each for hot chocolate powder in steamed milk. I just wanted to share with you how stupid it was that we just paid for something we own, and I also want to share that it's sad how much spending $2 is affecting me emotionally. That's what my life has become now.

3) I've decided on a new hobby and I am EXTREMELY interested in it, mainly because I haven't yet learned anything about it. I am still the 3rd grade kid who decides she wants to take drum lessons until she finds out you have to practice and it isn't immediately easy. This is why I am a writer by trade. It's the only thing that didn't cause much exertion on my part.

Oh my God, I didn't even tell you what the new hobby is. ATTENTION SPAN! Sorry. The new hobby is going to be cross-stitching--HEAR ME OUT!--funny things. Like stupid quotes and swear words next to adorable embroidered squirrels. Kind of like this one:

It's what makes the sauce so awesome. They will sell like HOTCAKES on Etsy. Except I assume hotcakes do not actually sell that well on Etsy since that would be a disaster, packaging-wise. But can't you imagine a cross-stitch pattern that says:

"A real man makes his own luck. -Billy Zane, Titanic" -Dwight Schrute

RIGHT?? I WOULD BUY THAT! I know I'm not the first person to do this. There is great, funny embroidery all over the internet. I'm not suggesting that I'm original, just that I want to be part of this amazingness. I mean, if millions of people can put a bird on it, then a couple of us can cross-stitch the f-bomb onto pillows and sell them on the interweb.

4) And finally, if this picture does not instill the fear of God into you, then you have no soul.

*shudder* The only reason those people are not being drowned is because that whale has CHOSEN TO SPARE THEM.

Monday, December 12, 2011

The Internet: Encouraging and Depressing At The Same Time

The internet is the reason why I am both sane and insane at the moment.

Sane, because it's my connection to people I know. Otherwise, I spend most of my time conversing with Clinton Kelly and my cat. The former never talks back and the latter is just plain cold. The internet gives me old episodes of 30 Rock (really, the only thing I'm paying Netflix for if we're all being honest with each other and I think we are) and lets me share links of stupid stuff with my family despite our distance.

It's also why I am insane as well, however. Because there are too many things I'm not seeing. Or making. Or becoming, or visiting, or buying. It reminds me of all the ways that I am not as good as other people, who are all out doing all the things. And it continues to remind me that other people have jobs and get money for doing those jobs and then spend that money on things they want to own. Seriously, how is it that LUTZ has a job, and I don't? Where did I go wrong?

It reminds me that there are all kinds of crafts that other people thought of which I never thought of and that makes me jealous and angry. It reminds me that delicious food can be made in my own home, which inevitably involves at least one ingredient I refuse to buy. (Oh, two tablespoons of buttermilk? Well I'll just run to the Tablespoons Of Stuff That Go Bad Quickly store and pick that right on up, sir.) The internet gives me all kinds of awesome hosting ideas, which reminds me that I have no one to host in a city where I know very few. It reminds me that other people are going out and exercising and I didn't. It reminds me that still other people are happily gorging on delicious things instead of exercising and I didn't do that either. It reminds me that other people are getting married and having babies and adopting dogs and finding jobs and traveling and I'm not doing any of that stuff. It reminds me that people who are famous started off when they were younger than me, and that makes me question whether or not I'll ever have any hope of being successful.

All I'm really doing, I guess, is complaining. I'm not looking for help. I know the answer--get up and go do things and quit whining about it. I know. And most days I do. But some days I get sucked in. Today is one of those days.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Why Do Girls Like Diamonds?: A Legitimate Question To Which I Demand Answers

I just don't get it.

Why am I supposed to like diamonds? What is the deep, underlying need I'm supposed to have for shiny bangles? Is it connected to the part of me that should want to wear puffy pink ball gowns all day? That would make sense, since I have never wanted either.

Maybe it's the stingy part of me that scoffs at diamonds. The part that doesn't like to overpay for things. The part that makes me not buy celery because I know it was 50 cents cheaper last week. But isn't it a known fact that diamonds are a whole...messed up Africa trade thing and they aren't actually worth that much?

So why do people keep buying them? And why do they make perfectly sensible women go crazy? For example, here are some scenes I would like explained to me:

30 Rock, 3.12
Elisa (Selma Hayak): "Okay, but I want a ring so big that it gives me back problems."

What?! You are a woman with TWO jobs. You work with your hands, caring for the elderly. In what world would that ring make sense for your life? Also, aren't you a devout Catholic? Doesn't Jesus preach all kinds of things about giving your worldly possessions to the poor and a rich man can't get into heaven and all that?

The Office, 7.11
Pam: "Is it pebbles from that beach in Jamaica? *Opens box* *Silence* Oh my God. *Tears* I love it."
Jim: "Yep, I do make great Christmas gifts. But I couldn't make that."

COULDN'T YOU? Well then, what if you just stuffed a teapot with all kinds of things that remind you of each other to secretly show her that you love her? Oh, you already did that. Okay fine. Then just spend all your money on a trinket for your wife when you have a family to feed. No need to put any thought into the gift--just toss money at her. Because that's the kind of person Pam is. The kind of girl who appreciates expensive gifts over thoughtful ones and LITERALLY CRIES over a diamond bracelet. That's the person we've all come to love for seven years, sure.

Up All Night, 1.11
Reagan: "The fact that you went through whatever you went through is enough for me. It's the thought that counts."
Chris: "Well then I got you two gifts. The thoughtful thing and, well, and also this."
Reagan: *GASP!* Oh my God! Oh my God! *GASP!* Look at this! Look at it! Look at this!...Look how hot my wrist looks! Oh, f*ck you, everybody! My husband ROCKS!"

Okay first of all, you need to breathe, Christina Applegate, although those last two sentences were hilarious. Secondly, you are the one technically making money. So you just bought yourself that bracelet. And again, with the family to feed. And REALLY does your wrist look that hot? Because I'm pretty sure your FACE looks hot and you are an awesome, powerful, smart woman who is better than that reaction. And what happened to the thought that counts then? Is this some funny way for us to all see that it really isn't?

Sex And The City, 3.9
Trey: "I think we should stop here for a minute. Maybe we should go in and find you the most beautiful ring they have."

Charlotte, I know that you are image-obsessed. And I know it took Harry to knock out the crazy. And I know this ring came from a proposal from a guy who says "alrighty." But you have an amazing sense of style, and THIS is how you show it? Trey lets you choose the ring, and you go with just a silver band with a rock on top of it? I guess I just had higher hopes for you, that's all. There's no more thought to this ring than there was to the "alrighty." He just sent you in to pick out something you can wear that proves how rich you're going to be. Where's the love? Why is this scene supposed to make the "alrighty" better?

I wish I could say that these shows are all just men writing what they think women want. But all four of these shows are either written, helmed, or overseen by women. So either we're letting these stereotypes happen, or they're actually true: it doesn't matter the circumstances, throw an expensive bunch of diamonds at it and it'll purr like a kitten.

Why? What is it? Are we distracted by shiny things? Do we just like to show off how much money our partner has?

Maybe I have such apathy because I don't have super nice clothes and I'm not a particularly elegant person. I don't like diamonds because I know how insane they would look next to my $10 Old Navy dress (DON'T HATE, I bought it in three colors). It's like when I was little and I had short hair so I hated wearing girly things because I thought it made me look silly, not fancy.

My thing is, I would just rather have something more sentimental or at least more useful, like a plane ticket to Italy, or some of that anti-wrinkle cream that actually works. Diamonds? You never get any use out of them unless you attend galas often (which I clearly don't--my god, the shattered champagne glasses...) or unless your engagement or wedding ring has them. And if you have a big rock like all the girls apparently want, you have to worry about snagging it on stuff or getting yourself hijacked when you go to Guam or blinding yourself from the glare reflecting off the sun.

So has my ranting terrified everyone from fighting for the other side? Anyone want to argue for diamonds in all their pretty, sparkly glory? Or does anyone want to join me in my confusion?

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

When I Believed In Santa Claus

I remember exactly where I stood in my kitchen as I told my friend, Courtney, "Well I don't believe in the Tooth Fairy or the Easter Bunny, but I'm not sure about Santa Claus."

My parents are notorious for forgetting that our teeth were hiding anxiously under our pillows. I had taken to writing notes on scraps of paper and taping them--facing out--onto the window. You know, just in case she just happened to fly by. Then there was the fact that all the richer kids in my school bragged about getting twenty dollar bills under their pillows. I hadn't even SEEN a twenty dollar bill, let alone owned one. Suddenly my excitement over having my very own silver dollar seemed silly. I couldn't even buy a Ninja Turtle with it. It didn't take long to put two and two together: a real fairy would be more scrupulous.

The Easter Bunny took a little longer. Easter had been my favorite holiday. It had the early morning excitement of gifts and surprises, with the creativity of dying your own eggs just the way you want them and not sharing them with your siblings, with the shrewdness-showboating of finding things someone had meant to hide from you. Also, there were Cadbury eggs. Santa and his plain ol' walnuts just couldn't compare. But slowly, the excitement began to erode. A bunny? Carrying all this heavy stuff? And how could he get an egg on top of the clock? And how does he get in, anyway? Problem was, there weren't a jillion movies, books, and old-timey newspaper articles to reassure me, give me insider knowledge, or promise that the non-believers can't hear the sleigh bell. That's all saved for Christmas. So Easter was a slow dwindling. I don't remember going from believing to not. Reason just kind of seeped its way in.

But Christmas was different. Each knock-down of Santa Claus was like a little slap to the brain, strong enough that I remember those little moments even now. Like the conversation with Courtney. Or the time I pulled my older sister, Katie, into the bathroom, closed the door, and demanded to know if she believed in Santa Claus. "No," she said. "Phew. Okay. Neither do I," I exhaled. Finally, the truth from someone reputable. I had been lied to for so long by all the people I thought I could trust, I didn't know where to turn. Yet I also knew to keep my mouth shut about it. This was private conversation, not meant for the impressionable ears of John or Hannah who still had a chance at believing. While still unsure myself of the truth, I understood that this was an okay lie, a fun lie, a lie meant for the smallest among us. It never upset me to find out that I'd been lied to. Maybe because I was happy to be on the other side with the adults. The Truth-Knowers.

It feels like a decade later, although it was probably just the following year, my mom came into my room and asked to borrow my green pen "for signing Santa's presents" she said. "You're old enough to know by now," she said, smiling. I smiled back. Of course. Of course I knew. Duh. Pff. Silly. And even though I thought I did, even though I'd already gotten the confirmation from Katie, it was that moment that made it reality. There was no chance now that, like the movies said, I had simply stopped believing. Tim Allen would never give me the weenie whistle to make be believe again. It was a fact: there is no Santa Claus, and my mother was responsible for the swirly green handwriting on all my favorite presents.

There is a magic lost that you never get back when you stop believing. Waking up that morning with proof--tangible proof--that magic exists (and it ate your cookies) is an amazing feeling. It might even be the first strong emotion I ever remember having. The four of us would sit at the top of the stairs of our split-level, surveying the gifts now overflowing from under the tree. Trying to guess whose gifts were whose, and who was the lucky duck to get the one enormous, wrapped present inevitably laying there. Finally, after 25 days of my eyes playing tricks on me, my stocking was definitely full this time. And look! He gave Rudolph the carrot we left, and he even left a note! I'm not sure what kept us from running down immediately. It might have just been our parents demanding we stay there until the coffee had brewed. Whatever it was, I never minded sitting there for a few minutes. After all, we'd been waiting for this moment all year; why let it pass by so quickly?

Of course, it's always nice to get presents, even when you know who really gave them to you. But those first few years have something special to them. It's the only time when you know--for a fact, with proof--that someone is out there who knows you intimately, and is watching over you. It's an innocence you never get back, and a feeling that many people spend their whole lives striving to find again.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Happy Fall Or Whatever

The weather in San Francisco is in the upper 50s. Always. Europeans reading this right now are like "SWEET JESUS, ARE YOU OKAY?!" so let me clarify I'm talking Fahrenheit here.

It's awesome, the weather. You can go outside in jeans and a moderate jacket and be comfortable. In Chicago, we have days like that. They are always days where you are cooped up at work or school. On the weekends, it rains. Like whiskey for the Irish, it is God's way of keeping Chicagoans from ruling the world.

But in San Francisco, every day is in the upper 50s. (BLAH BLAH sometimes it gets hot and sometimes there's fog but WORK WITH ME HERE, it's call hyperbole) I'm really--and I mean REALLY--excited for it to be 58° in late January. I might put on my swimsuit and run around outside just for kicks. But it's December. And as I've said before, it's the only month where cold is acceptable because you get to do all these Christmassy things (if you celebrate Christmas) that make the cold kinda nice.

I'm doing what I can to make the place feel like Christmas around here. Paper snowflakes on the window, pine scents coming at you from every room in every method of fragrance possible, and an alarm system set in my phone for Christmas movies on TV. T-Minus 5.5 hours until Charlie Brown Christmas, BTW.

But there really is no replacement for snow to make it feel like the season is upon us. And yet I'm about to go running in knee-length stretch pants. It is extremely bizarre for me.

I don't really have a conclusion for you. Just wanted to inform you that California is weirding me out this month. Luckily I come back to Chicago in time for Christmas and snow and all that jazz. So Chicago--YA'LL better deliver on this snow stuff, OR ELSE. Except not enough to ruin my flight or put me in peril. Just enough to make it pretty.


Thursday, December 1, 2011

5 College Courses I Wish I'd Taken

In college there are a certain number of prerequisite classes you have to take to graduate. Colleges realize that they only offer you about 6 classes at most (for me, it was 3) that pertain to your hopeful occupation, and they really want to squeeze as much money out of you/your parents/Richard & Emily Gilmore as they can. So they pile on all these classes you supposedly MUST take to graduate, claiming they'll make you well-rounded. Then, depending on your major, they add and subtract to these prerequisites at whim. For example, as an Advertising major, I fulfilled my math requirements with "Intro To Statistics" and "Teaching Elementary School Math." I doubt my Engineering compadres got away so easily.

The thing is, I'm not entirely convinced that these classes actually helped us in life. Some did, sure. Without Sociology, I would have no idea how racist I am. And Psych 100 was the only reason I understood the Office episode where Jim trains Dwight with Altoids. But do I really need to know how shale is created? And yet I took Geology. Do I really need to know about the many forms of the Venus? And yet I took "Women In Prehistory". *Sigh*...I has almost forgotten. So close.

So here are a few classes that I didn't take in college, but wish I had.

Cinema Studies
I actually did take a few of these classes. We didn't have any filmmaking courses, so I thought these might be useful for a future ad producer. I even considered it as a minor until I realized that I didn't need a minor. Then I decided not to bust my hump all the way to graduation. But looking back on those classes, they were 90% movie watching. Most of my movie knowledge comes from either these classes, or Joe forcing me to watch the Godfather. I wish I'd kept with these classes, because this still happens way too often-
Friend: "Have you seen _______ ?"
Emily: "No, sorry."
Friend: "WHAT?!?!?!?!??!?!!" *Fire*
Emily: "But it's been in my Netflix queue for two years...does that help?"

Mental Math
I've said it before and I'll say it again. There is absolutely no reason I should have taken pre-calculus in high school, except for the fact that it helped me and Kim become better friends again. The class I wish I'd taken in college to compensate is one that I'm not sure exists. Anywhere. But that class is called "Mental Math" and you come in every day and learn how to pay restaurant bills with a large group and how to tip cab drivers after they press that button and the number goes up and you had already planned out how much you owe with tip but wait now the price is back down to its original number and you can't think on your feet like that and GAAAAH just give me two back.

Political Science
Oh, you better believe I avoided this plague like the class--I mean--this class like the plague. OR DO I. Why in the holy hell mother of house minority leaders would I have subjected myself to discussing politics....and then being TESTED on it? What kind of ruthless, Godless world would I have to live in? Well the answer is: this one. And it sucks. But as an adult, I've realized that I can't run from politics. They find you. They hunt you down. And they make you SO. ANGRY. And a class about Political Science or Government (I mean besides the one I took in high school where my teacher showed us related films every day, including The American President and NO, I am not joking) might have turned out to be good for me.

I never took these classes because they required you to buy all the equipment yourself. Art majors took some pretty awesome classes, but JEEZ do they have to pay for it. Literally. Well anyway, I wish that I did take a class in photography for the obvious reason that I wish I took awesome photos on purpose. Anyone can point, shoot, and accidentally catch their cat in a hilarious position. But I want to be able to do that a LOT. I want to know how photographers can make their images so sharp and poignant and I'm stuck with a bunch of washed out photos of my friends in bars. This is the one class that I'm actually working toward taking. I bought a Groupon the other day for a single Digital Photography For Beginners class. Problem: I don't have a digital camera yet. I'm waiting until I have a job, and the Groupon doesn't expire until May.

Wine Tasting
This was actually an offered class at Illinois. Given the name, of course it was filled up by 5th year seniors with early-early-early-insanely-early registration and I never bothered. I hear it was actually a very hard class. I believe it, considering how little I know about wine: a) Does it cost under $5? b) Mmm, this tastes like wine--more please. Obviously there are also plenty of Groupons for this, too. Joe and I got one once, but never used it because it turned out to be vaguely shady. We're pretty sure the guy comes to your home and gives you a private tasting. Which is SUPER WEIRD. We didn't know that when we bought it because they didn't specify that. It just said "Wine Tasting for Two" which we assumed meant "The coupon pays for two people to come to our class" not "For Two and ONLY two." So that one is moot. We'll have to get on that one eventually.

Those are my classes. How about you? Any classes you regret not taking, real or imaginary?