Tag Archives: apartment

The Bright Side of Life

Because one is always grateful for chocolate.

Because one is always grateful for chocolate.

Things have been a little challenging this week. On top of the “usual” back stuff, I had an apartment maintenance issue that reared its head. I decided, rather than feel sorry for myself, to make a list of ten things that are worth being thankful for.

1. While the bathroom ceiling may have caved in, my apartment is still standing. Given the tornadoes ripping through the Midwest right now, that makes me lucky.

2. I have health insurance and good doctors who are helping me get slowly better.

3. My new roommate seems pretty cool, and so far she’s been a nice person to have around.

4. I am going to publish a collection of short stories in the next couple of months. Hopefully before the end of May. But no pressure.

5. I have lost about 15% of my total weight since January. I have a ways to go but I am determined to get there, and that will have a positive overall effect on my health.

6. I am planning some fun trips for when I get better. There will be Geek Girl Con in Seattle, and I may even head overseas this fall. Plus, since I’ve been injured, I’ve seen a bit more of my family than usual.

7. I AM FINALLY GOING TO SEE TWENTY ONE PILOTS. In September, with the friend who tried to win us tickets in January. And hopefully, by September, my back will be in good shape. (KNOCK ON WOOD.)

8. The weather in NYC is that perfect point between freezing and too hot to bear, and should stay that way for a few more weeks.

9. Since I live in NYC, I can get almost anything delivered to my house, which has been a total lifesaver throughout this whole back thing.

10. Bit by bit, I’m clearing my life of things I don’t need, which gives me more room to be the person I want to be, living a life that makes me glad.

BONUS 11. The blog my friend and I started in January has gone from being a fun joke between friends to a community of nearly 4000 people, and they are so sweet and lovely. Every day, they trust us with the sad and stressful things going on in their lives, and we do what very little we can to make them feel better. Which, in turn, makes me feel better.

It might seem silly but writing that stuff down made me feel a bit better about some of the less-awesome things going on right now. If you’re feeling down, give it a shot and see how you feel afterwards. There’s always something around that can drive a person nuts – so, what makes you happy, instead?

Letting the Cables Sleep

2013-04-25 22.32.00For years, I’ve had the habit of keeping the old cables from my past. Wires and wires, quarter-inch jacks and mini-jacks and parallel cables and VGA connectors. Later, HDMI and wifi connections replaced those early, fussily-pinned male-and-female connections with something more universal.

I’m cleaning the apartment, which seems less daunting when you hear that the space involved is probably under 300 square feet than it is when you’re trying to clean it out. The lights in here aren’t great. Most of them come from dim bulbs in age-yellowed fixtures. I’ve lived here four years and am just beginning to feel enough ownership over my abode to start putting pieces of myself into the place.

In trying to use a cheap piece of Plasticine (Copyright? Registration? TradeMark?)/leather furniture-slash-storage to its most efficient “use” I uncover a pile of old cables. It’s when I see the one from an old video capture card that I realize: how absurd, the idea these physical connectors would make their way into use in the future. Exactly once, I found myself in need of a cable I didn’t already own (and never had), and wound up paying an extortionate price for the replacement.

Earlier this year, I took a perfectly functional CD player to Goodwill because I had no practical use for a CD player. My computer houses a DVD-R drive; I strip everything I listen to to MP3 if I buy it in physical form at all, which I haven’t since I trudged the streets of Camden in search of the last British wave of music I bought into on CD.

2013-04-25 22.28.01Letting go of these cables seems impossible. But I weigh their usefulness against the space they take up and think of my roommate coming home earlier, as I was in the grip of a cleaning frenzy, asking her if I could use her hair dryer on the regular so I could throw out mine. “I’m so proud of you,” she said, because we encourage one another to be our best selves and she knows I hold on to things for way too long sometimes.

Can I let go of these old, physical connections to a past that involves a 486 on Windows 3.5; WP5.1 run in DOS, floppy disks and videotape-to-digital conversions? I used to joke that a BA in Media Studies (Video Concentration) meant I was qualified to hook up connections from one piece of equipment to another, but this physical education was quickly outpaced by the progress of ensuing years, and only part of the theory held true.

Knotted up in lengths of cables and noting the absurdity of this specialized cable [PIC], I think, this is ridiculous. This is a moment of clarity, a lesson in scaling back. Stop holding on to those things which no longer serve you.


Pare down. Don’t tuck them in a bag, zipped up, smothered under fabric. Put them away, let them go.

Let the cables sleep.

music: bush – letting the cables sleep [http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RPelsDKEtLQ]