Friday, April 16, 2010

The Zone

When I am in "The Zone," I get intense.

I'm talking about anything. Studying, working, cleaning, reading, shopping, etc. I become extremely focused.

For me there is no gray area. It's either I'm deep in "The Zone" or I'm no where close.

If I'm studying in "The Zone," I get lost in my books and notes and no text message, phone call, or chattering person can get me out of it. The only way it ends is if I feel like I've done enough work. For studying, it's did I get through enough material. For shopping, it's did I find what I was looking for. For cleaning, it's whenever I feel like the area is clean enough. So on and so forth. You get the idea.

For work, I just stay in "The Zone" as long as I feel like I need to be in it. At the restaurant or the reception hall, it's whenever the big rush comes through. When that's over, I slowly fade from the hustle and bustle and go back into my relaxed pace.

"The Zone" makes me very tunnel visioned. I've got my eyes set on the goal and there is no slowing down until I've achieved it.

When I'm studying, this is all well and good because I'm sitting down and zoning into my school work. However, when I'm running around at work, "The Zone" can be a bit of a problem.

At the sushi restaurant, there is this certain time where the business just pops and we get a whole lot of people come in and a whole lot of take-out orders phoned in all at the same time. So I have to seat people, take calls, bag orders, get other orders ready, get food from the back for orders, take walk-in take-out orders, pay out people, etc. Needless to say I am running around a lot. Multi-tasking at it's finest.

This is when I enter "The Zone." *Insert Twilight Zone theme music*

Full Throttle Tunnel Vision Zonage.
(Zonage is not a word.)

Sometimes, I get so focused that I'll just run straight into a chair because I just don't see it there. I mean, hey, when you all you can see is the box of sushi you're bee lining towards, how can you notice the human body right smack dab in front of you. Can anyone blame me for running them over?! can? Hm...I don't get it.

The way I see it, one cannot be blamed for getting in "The Zone." It just doesn't compute.

There is this one girl that I work with who has this crazy habit of just being in the wrong place at the wrong time with me. I'll turn around, and BAM! I run straight into her because she's just chillaxing behind me. Or I'll need get to the sushi counter and she's just standing there drumming her fingers and humming a song to herself with not a care in the world and I'm freaking out because I have five people at the hostess stand all wondering where their food is. Wherever I turn, she is always, without fail, right there behind me. And always right where I need to go.

It used to make me frustrated because it would knock me off my rhythm and because I just get way too intense when I'm working. But now, I kind of like it. I've become so used to her being there that when I turn around, I instinctively make way for her. I've mastered the art of working around her and the challenge makes work that much more fun.

I feel like, if people see me, they should be able to see "The Zone" pretty much written across my forehead and just know to clear the way.

For your own safety, you don't want to disrupt "The Zone."

You could die....

Monday, April 12, 2010


Here's the thing, men.

The Church and even the world needs good, holy men to join the priesthood. Compassionate, faithful, strong, loving, giving men. Good men. And I will be the first to agree with that.

Now that we've got that cleared up, I will move on...

You want to know what else the world needs? Good fathers.

You're probably thinking, "Duh! No big." Right? Well please allow me to shine a light on what that means.

Being a father and a leader of a family is a tough job. It requires all of you. Here, I will repeat that.

Being a father requires all of you.

It's a promise and a commitment. It's a huge responsibility. But you know what? I don't think I'd be venturing too far to say that it's extremely rewarding. Rewarding in ways you and I could never imagine.

It takes a real man to be a father. Not to have a child. I feel like it's safe to say that that task is quite simple. But to be a father...well...that requires a great deal of strength in order to be successful in such a role.

I just want us all to be on the same page before we go making any rash decisions in the future. Decisions we aren't ready for or aren't able to handle. As a parent, you are in charge and responsible for the well-being of another human life. A life given to you by your Father. A life you brought into the world. When you bring that life into the world planned or not, you are now under obligation. To simply walk away from something so indescribably fragile and beautiful is, in essence, the fall of your virility.

In my honest opinion, it's as simple as that.

After having a child, everything you do affects them. Everything. From what you eat, to what you wear, to what you say, and to even who your friends are - all of it matters. Those little eyes see and those little hearts remember. They never forget. You are the #1 role model in their life. As their father, you are their rock and their constant. You are their strength, their protection, and their captain. Where you go, they will follow. Their full, complete trust is in you.

Here is an example of a good father.

If you aren't sure of who this is, please allow me to introduce to you, St. Joseph. The foster father of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. He is the man who set the bar so high that I feel like every other father after him should look to his life as an example. He was called to be a father and caretaker whether he wanted it that way or not. He stood up and filled the role he was called to fill. No ifs, ands, or buts. He was everything a father should be. A protector, a teacher, and a caregiver. I can only hope that more fathers will look to him in reference.

To have a child and to stick around does not make a man a good father. Just because you are "around" does not mean you are present in your child's life.

Do you cheer them on? Do you listen to their thoughts, hopes, and dreams? Do you do your best to try to make those come true? A child demands for the parents to be fully present.

It isn't natural for a child to grow up without a father. Inevitably, those children will be missing some key points in being raised that only a father can bring. Those children will have a missing piece in their hearts that only a father can fill. The same can be said for the role of the mother.

Those children need a hero. A man who is strong, gentle, and understanding. A provider, a supporter, a coach, an educator, and a leader.

A father they can look up to.

To all fathers - past, present, and future - here is an excerpt from Edgar A. Guest's "Only a Dad":

Only a dad, neither rich nor proud,
Merely one of the surging crowd,
Toiling, striving from day to day,
Facing whatever may come his way,
Silent whenever the harsh condemn,
And bearing it all for the love of them.

Only a dad but he gives his all,
To smooth the way for his children small,
Doing with courage stern and grim
The deeds that his father did for him.
This is the line that for him I pen:
Only a dad, but the best of men.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Dear Brandy

I love my phone number.

I love it because it's an extremely easy number to remember.

But, in life, you'll find there is ALWAYS a catch.

You see, there is a girl named Brandy who has a very similar number to mine. So similar, in fact, that I'm pretty sure that 75% of the calls that are being made to her are accidentally being made to me instead. Friends, family, her insurance company, sales people, love interests, etc.

I get SO many calls for her that it makes me wonder. Does she give them my number purposely so that she can avoid them because mine is probably just a digit off from her own? She meets some guy at a bar, he asks for her number but she doesn't want to bluntly reject him so she gives him a similar number to hers expecting never to hear from him again. But then, she sees him out again somewhere and he explains he tried calling but she gave him a bad number. Then she can just say, "Oh, gosh! Sorry! I thought the last number was a 4 not a 6." And they'll believe it was an honest mistake because, hey, it was just one digit off from her own.

Well, listen here, Brandy!

I would appreciate it if you at least alternated digits. Maybe instead of a 4 as that last digit, turn it to a 5 and this way, I'll be clear of your calls! We can compromise even. I have no problem telling the phone company that they have the wrong number. But I can't tell the men in your life that THEY have the wrong number! What if that breaks their little hearts! They got played and I get to deliver the message!

I cannot break hearts for you, Brandy dear. I can't do your dirty work!

So much pressure!!

PS - Mike called. The guy you met last night. He was checking up on you. I took a message.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Mourning at the Movies

Today I did something I've been wanting to do for a long time now. Take myself to the movies. Just myself.

It was kind of a big deal to me because I spent the entire day by myself and that hasn't happened in a long, long time. It was much needed and I'm really glad I did it.

Anyway, I chose to go see a matinée for The Last Song. The new Nicholas Sparks movie that just came out with Miley Cyrus and Liam Hemsworth.

The movie was good. The author and directors whipped up a recipe to ensure that it be a real tear jerker. And let me tell ya, IT WAS A REAL TEAR JERKER.

I wasn't expecting it. I was thinking it would just be a cheesy, little chick flick. It may have been cheesy...I don't know. It's the viewer's opinion. All I know is that I cried...a lot.

At first it was just silent tears but then I started sniffling and doing that thing where you catch your breath because you're crying so much. was pathetic. The movie really got to me though! I couldn't help it!

There were only about eight other people in the theater anyway and I don't think you could have heard me unless you were sitting one or two seats away from me... ;D

I am completely aware of how ridiculous I am.

Here's the thing, though...I was not the loudest weeper in the theater. We had a wailer. And I'm saying a WAILER. Complete with mournings of, "Oooohhh!" And, "Oh my God!" Insert some wails of deep sorrow and intense sniffling and we had ourselves a real sobber. I imagine there was drool and snot somewhere in there, too.

At this point, I had started giggling uncontrollably. Muffled, of course, as to not discourage the poor girl from getting those feelings out. I had really lost it, though. I just couldn't stop laughing. But, my goodness, it was the funniest thing I've ever experienced at a theater. Every time I think about it, I just crack up. I started crying even more because I was laughing so hard!

Oh boy...

You cry, honey! You get it out, baby girl!

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Final Say

Lent is over. Here's the verdict. I'm going to be 100% real with you right now, okay?

As most of you know, I gave up make-up this Lenten season.

I did this to reteach myself that all the additives are not what make me beautiful and so that I could learn what beauty really is. As in, what is true about beauty and what are lies created by the society around us? And maybe, with this new awareness, I could spread the message to other women around me.

I learned a lot about myself in the last 40 days. I learned that I had become reliant on make-up. That without it, I felt like I looked terrible. I learned that how much sleep you get dramatically affects your appearance. (Duh!) I learned that a lot of us hide behind make-up and that some of us lose all confidence without it. For some, make-up is as essential as brushing your teeth and putting clothes on.

To be super honest with you, I felt pretty vulnerable without make-up from time to time in the last forty days. I felt very exposed and uncovered as crazy as that sounds. And naturally, these feelings got worse when I'd be standing next to or talking to someone who was all made up. Through time, though, these negative feelings slowly faded. So much so, that in the last two weeks, I was so use to no make-up that the smaller the amount of make-up on people, the more attractive they looked to me.

St. Joseph's feast day is a solemnity in the Catholic church. This means that you don't have to fast from meat if it falls on a Friday during Lent and you don't have to abide by any of the sacrifices you may have given up. After praying about it a little, I decided to put on a small amount of make-up that day to see how the time off from it had affected my outlook on the subject.

Surprisingly, I realized that I felt just as confident with no make-up as I did with it! I had set out on a mission this Lenten season and this new realization meant that I had succeeded in that mission.

So there were tough days and easy days, but overall, I came out victorious. I can now say that I feel truly beautiful without all the nonsense on my face.

It has come to my attention that beauty is so much more than superficial and insubstantial looks. Sure, it's nice to be made up! I agree! And you will surely see me around with make-up on and all that jazz. But the make-up is not what makes us beautiful, ladies. What is truly alluring is your genuine smile or your lively laugh. Beauty comes from a greater depth than whether or not you put too much eye shadow on. Yes, beauty can be defined and is defined as what is pleasing to the eye. And I agree. One should take care of themselves and keep themselves up. Someone who "let's himself go" is not as approachable as someone who hasn't.

Look, I believe in hygiene and grooming. For. Sure.

However, that is only one definition and interpretation of beauty.

Someone who is very attractive but is not very loving might not be defined as someone who is beautiful. Perhaps they are just pretty or handsome. But not beautiful.

Why? Because the term "beautiful" should be reserved. That's my opinion, anyway. After Lent this year, I have a special place in my heart for the word. It means a lot to me as you can probably tell.

Society says skinny is correct. Society pushes make-up and anti-aging remedies. Society says old is wrong. Society says fake is right. Society sits on a throne of lies.

A middle-aged woman who was blessed with curves, who loves to laugh and sing, and who cares about the people around her is a BEAUTIFUL woman. And you would agree.

I beg you not to believe what the television and those darn magazines tell you. They do not know. Beauty is not a thin, washed out lady with ten pounds of make-up.

You are beauty. You are. The work that God did when he created you is beauty in itself. You may say you need more make-up and you need to lose some ungodly amount of weight and whatever else you might feel like you need to do to yourself. But saying that is practically slapping our Father in the face. What He did is a work of art and is beautiful.

You heard me, right? You. Are. Beautiful. Hey, do you want to be the one to stand up to Him and say, "What You did isn't good enough. I can make it better than You can." Didn't think so.

I would challenge you to not wear make up for a few days. See how it affects you and where you are in terms of comfort in your natural beauty. You will be amazed at the things you discover!

Anyway, I've ranted and talked in circles enough to you, my darlings! Happy Easter!