Friday, March 27, 2009


I wonder why it is that we pronounce Afghanistan with "a" like "apple," but Pakistan with "a" like "awful."

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Seeing clearly

I got contacts last week -- well, contact. I only need one, thank goodness. Aside from nearly giving myself a black eye trying to get it in and out, I'm pretty happy with it. But it begs the question, when did I become so completely consumed with looking younger? And is it weird that the reason I got contact was that I wanted eye-liner to show? That's bizarre.

This month in Elle Magazine, there's a feature highlighting the VERY young assistants, speech-writers and deputies to Barak and Michelle Obama. These are women my age literally at the right hand of the President and First Lady. What am I doing? My dad once said that he thought that I had more promise than anyone in the family. That's saying a lot, I think. And yet, here I am minimally able to handle a low-level position at a barely-ranked college.

I couldn't stand to read the article, even though they were talking about clothes, but I read one small paragraph in which one of the women was noted for her ability to juggle three Blackberries at once. I don't want to even have one Blackberry to juggle. Is that the difference? Instead of spending my time worrying about not being successful enough by 34, I know the right thing to do is to come to terms with being the person that I actually am. It's such a struggle to have two people in my body -- one that wants to be wildly successful and one that is too lazy and fond of quiet nights and being with my husband and family and dog. But person A will always be disappointed in person B, and person B will always feel like she's letting talent go to waste in a way that is non-retrievable.

How successful is enough? Why these existential questions? What DO people say on their deathbed, if they don't say, "I should have spent more time at the office?"