Wednesday, February 29, 2012

The Perks of Being a Night Owl, or Surviving the Night Shift

You may or may not know this, but I work during the night now. And not in a oh I get off at 9pm oh it's so late. No, I work from 10pm until 6am most days of the week. This has created and interesting new dynamic between me and my body. If anyone has worked during the night, you'll know how difficult it is to adjust to this new schedule at first. Your body doesn't know what to do in the mornings, it's tired but the sun is tell it to wake up. I had a lot of trouble the first week just getting enough sleep during the day. I was exhausted but I couldn't sleep past noon for some reason. I mean really, in my hay day I could sleep until about 2pm no problem, even when I went to sleep at a reasonable hour. It's sad to think my body is starting to get used to a responsible sleeping schedule. Proof I really am an adult I guess.

Anyway there have been a couple of strange consequences to this new schedule. First off, I've lost my appetite to a large extent. I think my body is just so freaked out that we haven't really been communicating properly. It's as if it doesn't know if it's the morning or not. To be fair I go to sleep in the morning and wake up in the afternoon, so I guess it's only to be expected that there would be some confusion. My remedy for this not eating, because I do need food occasionally, has been to schedule it out. I've been working on a new schedule that will simulate a regular day, even though my days are far from regular, and this has kept me from getting the grouchies, or low blood sugar. Also I only really want to eat totino's pizza rolls, I could eat those all day.

I also cannot seem to decide when to sleep. I'm supposed to sleep during the day, in the mornings but that gets difficult at times. I stay up all night and get home at 6am and I have it scheduled to go to sleep around 6:30am when my roommate gets up to go to work. But it gets hard to do that when the sun is rising and every single part of your being is telling you to wake up and start the day. So I end up "staying up" to like 10am, then in order to get a full 8 hours I would have to sleep until like 6pm and that's dark times during the winter. There is nothing more off putting then getting up when it's already dark. It's gross to go to sleep when the sun comes up and wake up when the sun goes down. On second thought, gross doesn't even begin to cover it. So as a result I haven't been sleeping. The other day I stayed up like 40 hours with a three hour nap in the middle somewhere. It was horrible. Another unforseen consequence was yesterday I was just about to drift off the sleep finally at 8am when my boss called me to come in for a day time shift. Too bad I had been awake for a day and a half at this point. I was not a happy camper that day, no siree!

So how can you combat this unfortunate problem? You can't really change the time you get to sleep, it's determined by your work schedule. You also can't change when the sun goes up or comes down. What you can influence is how your body reacts to it. For example get black out curtains in your bed room. Fool your body into thinking it's still night time when you go to sleep. In the afternoon purchase a timer so your lights will turn on when you want to wake up in so it looks like it's within the realm of possibility that it could be daylight. Also invest in some ear plugs. The neighborhood kids like to come home from school and, you know, play and stuff, so it can get loud. If I want to get my full eight hours I have to pray they have a lot of homework that day or something. If you don't want to get blackout curtains, which I don't particularly want to do, I like how bright and airy my apartment is and I don't want to mar that with heavy light consuming curtains, I would suggest a sleep mask. An added benefit of this is feeling super high class and pretentious as you sleep, win-win!

I would also suggest embracing this new nocturnal life style. There is a lot to do in the city at night, more than you'd think. Bars are open until around 2am usually, though last call is typically 1:30am. There is karaoke to indulge in and trivia nights to dominate. The late night world is your oyster, and when all your friends are starting to get tired you can mock them for being super lame. Also there is a lot of ...interesting? late night tv on, delve into that treasure trove! You'll find such classics as The Young and the Restless, the longest running soap opera to date, (I just looked it up, and I totally made that up, oh well, I'll let it stand) and 16 and Pregnant. I don't know how you can feel upset about being a night owl when you have such great options, it boggles the mind.

Another dubious plus side is that you will basically begin to look like a vampire. No sun will touch your skin, thus you will also be avoiding the leading cause of skin cancer. These pros are just adding up I tell you. Also if you want to get out of something, just claim you're suffering from seasonal effective disorder and you need to stay home under your sun lamp. No joke though, you should all go out in the sun every once in a while to maintain that non-corpse like appearance we all so encourage and to get that necessary vitamin D.

Well this devolved quickly, I'm blaming the lack of sleep and the lack of real food and all that, but really people it's not that bad. Really... I mean now I'm beginning to share a disturbing resemblance to Gollum, but other than that I couldn't be happier.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

The Greatest of American Holidays: The Super Bowl

In a country that thrives on creating fake holidays, just to make money (yay capitalism) The Super Bowl is probably my favorite. It isn't an official holiday on the calendar, we don't get it off from work (I mean I had to work on Sunday) and there are no hallmark cards that you are socially obligated to buy. It does have a color scheme though it changes from year to year, depending on the teams playing. There is always a winner and a loser which is also a common theme that runs throughout American holidays. For instance, St. Patrick's Day; if you were ever a kid in elementary school and you forgot your bit of green on this day, you deserved what you got as far as I'm concerned.

There are a lot of reasons to love the Super Bowl, and this year was an especially good one to talk about. I live in LA and therefore don't have a real team of my own to cheer for, as a result my favorites tend to have more to do with who my parents talk about or whose quarterback seems the coolest, (I know people I'm a paragon of sports knowledge). That being said I had no problem with either of the teams this year. I like the Giants because I love the Manning brothers and while Eli (insert sister-kissing-mouth-breather joke here) is a poor substitute for Paton,  I was willing to make due. I also don't mind the Patriots because they were the underdog as far as I'm concerned. They had previously lost to the Giants at another Super Bowl, and everyone was giving all the press to Eli Manning and the Giants leading up to the game. Also I like Tom Brady, he seems like an okay person. So I had no pigs in this race, and I like it like that. Emotional involvement is messy.

I would like to point out that while I've gotten better at knowing all the rules of Football and can watch a game intelligently, I still have absolutely no idea what is going on 90% of the time. Usually I get so bored watching the game that I have to leave part way through. I have gotten better though, a fact which I attribute to three years of going to home college football games and watching all four seasons of Friday Night Lights (Clear eyes, full heart, CAN'T LOSE!). Sometimes I feel like my folks are talking in a different language with all the football jargon, and everyone else seems to understand it. Despite these issues I have to say I enjoyed myself this particular Sunday.

First off, who doesn't like a day when it is socially acceptable to get drunk and yell constantly? Not to mention all the foodie snacks you get to munch on all day long. My brother and I were planning on engaging in a new form of drinking game I found on the internets call Battle Shots!

Sadly this dream was not realized, partially because we didn't get our shit together in time and partially because I had to work that night and my better judgement told me not to start a drinking game involving shots of hard liquor. That being said, this will happen at some point! Also being said, this kind of juvenile behavior is acceptable and even encouraged on this most American of days. It is a day for BBQs and ordering vast amounts of pizza, vats of guacamole and barrels of chips, not to mention the BEER! Oh America I know what you need, an excuse to get drunk and disorderly in the safety of your own living room!

Okay so that is why Super Bowl as an institution is awesome but this game was more fun than usual for a couple of reasons. One which I mentioned before being my increase interest in the game. The second being we were all waiting for the QBs to get sacked. Apparently, and I didn't know this, but Tom Brady makes the best faces when he gets sacked, I think it might be all QBs, but Brady especially. Think about it, these guys think of themselves as the top of the football foodchain, their words are law, they have an entire offensive line whose main job is to keep the opposing team away from them so he can make the play happen. That's some pretty powerful stuff, no wonder most of them are assholes, I probably would be too. That being said, when everyone fucks up and the QB gets sacked it's pretty much the most hilarious thing ever. I can safely say this because I really don't give a damn who wins any given game.

Another reason the Super Bowl was more entertaining than usual this year is probably because I'm finally out of school and in the work force. I don't have as much free time as I used to and therefore I know I need to make the most of the time I do have. This means that when I have days off I actually do stuff, like go home for the day to hang with my family and watch a rousing game of football. I also don't get to see my family nearly as much because I am working more and I can't just go home for days at a time and bum around the old family domicile, as much as I would like to, so any excuse is a good excuse!

But, we're getting off track, as much as I am only now discovering my true love of the Super Bowl, it has been an unofficial, but officially awesome, American holiday far long than I've been alive. America is ridiculous when it comes to holidays, they're basically an excuse for capitalism to run rampant and Super Bowl Sunday is no excuse. Just go to the super market a couple days before and you'll see a ridiculous increase in avocado, chip, beer and deli meat sales. It's... gastonomical... I love any socially sanctioned excuse to sit on the couch all day, staring at the tv, whilst shoving embarrassing amounts of food down my throat, it's the American dream. I used to be slightly ashamed of this beautiful country but now I'm nothing but proud. America the beautiful where, football and food reign hand in hand, united by our love and devotion to them. God bless us, everyone.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Why I Luurv Celebrity Crushes

Let's be real ladies and gentlemen, everyone has a celebrity crush. Some are a little stranger than others but everyone has a this propensity to think some guy we've seen in a movie or on tv will make us happy. And while this may seem unhealthy and unproductive, I feel like to a certain extent it is necessary for happiness.

Now I'm just going to go ahead and reveal some of my more intense crushes such as James McAvoy (oh if only you were taller/an actual possibility for me). Now I first started to have gushy teenage feelings about ol' McAvoy when I watched the Children of Dune miniseries on the SyFy channel, that's right, I'm that cool, and for all you judgers out there I challenge you to watch it too, you'll see what I mean if you do (hint: he's shirtless the entire time!)

teen Schmahlo was down!
Now I admit he is more attractive/mature now, but take into account I was in high school and that was the pinnacle of dreaminess.

James may have been my first real celebrity crush (I'm not counting JC from n'sync) but he was by no means my last. I'm currently suffering from a Michael Fassbender craze which made X-Men First Class especially difficult to watch because both my obsessions were in it, and they had a beautiful bromance together (le sigh). Typically I don't even really have these celebrity crushes on actual real people. Usually it's just the character they are protraying that gets my gears turning, if you forgive the crass language. For instance I couldn't care two figs for ol' Fassenbender until he played Mr. Rochester in the most recent Jane Eyre movie. Mr. Rochester has long been a favorite male protagonist of mine and basically anyone who has ever played him ever will eternally be on my list of who I would be willing to do anything for a chance with (actually that's a lie I only like Michael Fassbender and Toby Stevens from the 2006 masterpiece theater miniseries). 

grab me a slice of that broody english pie!
All that being said, I realize that many people view these obsessions as unhealthy or indicative of a less than sane mind, but I disagree. They are pivotal to how we form relationships in our own lives. For young people who've never had actual real relationships the TV show and movie characters do a decent job of showing the frailties of the human condition (a.k.a. no one is perfect) without completely destroying all hope for their own futures. So thank you beautiful men and women in the TV you make me not hate my fellow man as much.

Maybe for some people their fake relationships with fictional characters impede their potential for true and lasting real life relationships but in my experience this isn't the case. In fact I'm usually more down to socialize with others after a wonderful movie where I could fantasize the entire time about being the leading lady next to that leading man. Those emotions we feel in the midst of someone else's fictional drama almost seem to jump start our own internal drives to interact with others. All I know is the longer it's been since I've seen a romantic comedy with a drool worthy man the less likely I am to check my online dating profiles/respond to advances from the opposite sex, cause let's be honest social interaction is a lot of work when it's with someone new (I guess it's not a lot of work for everyone but I'm basically a hermit).

We never really see those issues occur in TV dramas and so we are inspired to take the plunge and just go for it. The norm is for everything to work out in the end and that consistent message gives us all the internal optimism it takes to just get out there and do it. Lusting after fictional men/women provides us with the incentive to actually go out and find a nonfictional man/woman. As much as I am usually against nonfiction when it comes to my television or books I am all for it in regards to my actual life.

So LAY OFF MY FICTIONAL CRUSHES they are literally the only thing keeping me from becoming the recluse that I could totally become if given the chance.

Ummmmm.... HELL YEAH