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“Forever never seems that long until you’re grown.” December 31, 2010

Posted by Leticia Rojas in Haphazard.
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The end of the year and the beginning of a new one makes me more emotional than a middle aged woman watching her first and only child go somewhere far, far away like college. And even though “time”, is just a human invention, a creation to make sure we have “control” and can track what has passed, what is here, and what the future holds… whether it’s something to look forward to or not. I really hate it, or should I say strongly dislike it, when people say things like, “2010 sucked, I can’t wait for the new year!” Though the new year seems like a fresh start, shaking up the etch-a-sketch to blank… it’s not. If anything, it’s a new page in your already crowded, doodled, messy notebook… at best. Though, nothing else can be erased or added to the previous pages… but that’s another issue altogether. These are just my opinions, and I know I can come across as a human that values my own opinion more than a pretty penny, they are merely my opinions… nothing more and nothing less. But what can I say, humans are strange… and I am far from an exception… so far I can barely see that boundary line. Year after year, day after day, hour after hour I learn something new about something, someone, somewhere and I store that in my brain if I like or dislike it, to create a reaction or action later on in life. And though I am still young and naive and I have a hell of a whole lot to learn about this humongous world (that in reality is just a speck of dust in our gargantuan universe) I feel like this year, but really, this episode of my life… I have learned so much. So much so, that it’s hard to know where to begin. And maybe if I sift back through this old love letter to myself, I can laugh about how stupid I was back then.  I can only hope that I grow enough to realize how stupid I was.

  1. I’ve learned that you don’t have to be rude to not take shit from people. Killing with kindness is a very difficult thing to do, but I’m trying to master this (by 2022 I should have this down pat).
  2. I’m in better agreement with myself. I am beginning to understand what my expectations will be and how the people in my life fit them. No one is perfect, but you learn what you love and what you don’t and deal with the things that you don’t like. How you deal with it, though, is entirely up to you… then that’s when you seek out number one. I hope that “dealing” with for certain people don’t mean doing anything illegal! Killing with kindness is not meant to be taken in a literal sense, and if you’ve seen Pushing Daisies… you just might know what I’m getting at!
  3. Success is much easier than failure. It is so hard to wake up and look in the mirror, disgusted with yourself, beating yourself up in your brain discussing and analyzing your issues. How can you defend yourself… from yourself? Patting yourself on the back, and moving forward is easier than failing and finding a way to move on and pick yourself back up again. Sure, you may be disgraced and ashamed… and as cliché as it may be, you need to learn to “dust yourself and try again”. Your mind will thank you for ending those loud arguments.

Resolutions are always weird. It’s important to have goals, but you don’t need to build them around a calendar year… calendars are something that can be bought in a freaking bookstore! Why would you base your life goals on something worth no more than ten bucks?! Change because you want your habits to become your lifestyle, not because it’s January 1st somewhere in the world.

Now that I’ve dabbled into a few reasons why I have a love/hate relationship with the end of the year, it’s important to know why I love it! I love the new year because it’s a worldwide celebration! And even though I kind of bashed on the concept of “time” earlier in my discussion, new year’s celebrations are kind of like the wave at a sports game! Everyone is a part of it, one time zone at a time! There are no religious, sexual, or racial boundaries when it comes to celebrating and bringing in a brand new year. And even though, at the end of the day… a new year, is just a new day… how cool is it to think that 80% of the world’s population is probably hungover at the exact same time? Or most importantly, thinking about the fact that this is probably the only global day where the most hugs and kisses are given out.

~  2  0  1  0   F  A  V  O  R  I  T  E  S  ~

The following are all the new discoveries I made this year. They have brought me a lot of joy and I think it’s important to share things that make you smile. Oh, laugh at me if you want… it’s not like I’ll know! There are a few guilty pleasures listed that I should be ashamed about… but I’m not (hint some of the top 40 hits are my bubblegum guilty pleasures, but why hide the fact that they made me turn the volume up?).

  • Movies: Tangled, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows part 1, Scott Pilgrim vs. The World, Easy A, Sunshine Cleaning, Zombieland, Eclipse, Adventureland, Being John Malkovich; Sorry, I didn’t get to watch 127 Hours, Black Swan, or The Social Network but they are most definitely on the list of things to see that I couldn’t afford!
  • Music: White Lies To Lose My Life (key tracks: The Price of Love, Farewell to the Fairground, Taxidermy), La Roux La Roux (key tracks: I’m Not Your Toy, Tigerlily, In For the Kill, Saviour), Rodrigo y Gabriela 11:11 (11:11, Hanuman, Chac Mool), Little People Mickey Mouse Operation (key track: Start Shootin’), A Perfect Circle Thirteenth Step (key tracks: Gravity, Noose, Weak and Powerless); Thievery Corporation “Beautiful Drug, Sweet Tides, and La Femme Parallel”, Peter Bjorn and John “The Chills”, Pogo “Go Out and Love Someone and Alohomora”, Shakira “Waka Waka and La Loca”, Rihanna “Only Girl”, Jade Smith “Whip My Hair”, Miguel featuring J. Cole “All I Want is You”, Far East Movement “Like a G6”, Lady Gaga “Alejandro”, Edward Maya and Vika Jigulina “Stereo Love”, Kaskade “4 am (Adam K & Soha Remix), Deadmau5 “Ghosts and Stuff and Faxing Berlin”, Kaskade and Deadmau5 “Move for Me”, La Roux “Bulletproof (Dave Aude’s Cherry Mix)”, La Roux “In For the Kill (Skream Remix)”
  • Television: CONAN, Modern Family, Californication, Pushing Daisies
  • Dreams: Three beaches with my small, Asian child, Hanging out with Conan O’Brien, and Sitting in Brandon Boyd’s apartment talking about his music.
  • Other fond moments: finally using Twitter, learning how to ride a bike (again, but better), learning how to knit, the birth of my little boy cousin Nelson Isaac, Myrtle Beach family vacation, my two favorite albums gifted to me by my favorite, most talented artist (for free), Vintage Volume finally played live (three times), seeing La Roux live, visiting the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Museum, the snowstorm happened this year… right? Okay so, that too. By the way, these are in no particular order, because obviously the birth of my little cousin holds a lot more weight in terms of importance and fond moments than having a Twitter account!

I truly hope that this new year will bring many blessings to everyone in the whole world. That may sound naive, but I’m talking about good health and happiness, not big yachts and Suisse bank accounts, although those are always more than welcome! Misery loves company, and it is hard to contain. So, if more people are happy with much to be thankful for, I think we all could spread a little more cheer. Little things like being polite, saying good morning, using your turn signal, or just saying those magic words, “please, thank you, you’re welcome, and I love you” can make all the difference in someone’s day. There have been times where I’ve just wanted to sit down and tell people to think about things differently and calm down… maybe it’s enough to wish that they will figure it out for themselves before it’s too late. Have a wonderful new year everyone!

 

P  E  A  C  E

Leticia’s Recent Favorites November 20, 2010

Posted by Leticia Rojas in Haphazard, Places, Things.
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Recently Oprah has done her Favorite Things episode. So I finally decided to my Favorites Thing post, but I’ve been thinking about it for awhile. Unfortunately for you I’m not giving anything away, I’m just going to talk about things I’ve discovered and enjoyed these past few weeks.

  • I have rediscovered Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Formula: This makes your skin feel like butter and makes you smell like a chocolate bar. And it’s very light too, I don’t smell like a bakery or a garden of flowers. And it’s cheap, under $4 at most places like Target or Wal-Mart.
  • Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Soap: I really hate to buy anything with harsh Sulfate detergents, and something in my mind feels like the more cocoa butter products I use the softer I will be… I’m working towards being a silky cloud.
  • Thai Square: I LOVE Thai food and if you have intelligent taste buds you do, too. I love the combination of flavors: sour, salty, sweet and spicy. Most people try Pad Thai first (noodles with eggs, scallions, peanuts, and a choice of meat) but there is SO much more to Thai food than that. This place is all about the food, a ‘hole-in-the-wall’ you could say. It’s not about design and overdressed tables and snooty waiters like other Americanized Thai food restaurants.
  • Rodrigo y Gabriela: Their album 11:11 is amazing. Two guitarists, all acoustics with some use of distortion. They are truly a talented pair, and it’s all about the music, there are no lyrics… so when you listen you can create your own poetry, your own thoughts and design the song for the moment you are living. Plus, they are fantastic live. If you don’t want to dish out $9.99 for the album, check them out on YouTube… and you can start off with my favorite song on the album.
  • V8 Fusion, now in cans! I always have this vision that I’m going to fill some of my water bottles with juice and I never do… mostly because I’m too lazy, and I don’t want to ruin perfectly good water bottles because I forgot to wash out all the juice. I’m not a filthy person, I’m just trying to avoid the inevitable. I’m kind of sad that they don’t come in my favorite flavors yet… but if you like Strawberry Banana (yuck) or Pomegranate Blueberry (good, but a little strong for me) you should go buy some. It’s much healthier than soda or fake fruit juices, and be sure to recycle the can when you’re done.
  • Modern Family: I saw advertisements for this show a few times on Hulu, but I kept putting it off. If I hadn’t put it off for so long… I would’ve been much happier long ago! This show reminds me a lot of Arrested Development, even down to the black and orange title. If you are a fan of comedy, dysfunctional families, and thoroughly enjoy references to weird things that happen in everyday life… you need to watch this. I’m not very good at catching a series at their scheduled time; I’m one of those Netflix/Hulu people that catch up with episodes later… but if you have the time watch this on ABC, Wednesdays at 9pm.

This isn’t the most thorough of reviews lists… these are just a handful of recent favorites. Maybe I’ll make a products year in review, my favorite things for all of 2010. I can probably do this after I copy Mrs. Simmons’ best brownies in the universe (I dubbed them that name, because they truly are!) recipe and purchasing Pureology shampoo and conditioner. My tired, Saturday afternoon post is over now. Enjoy the leaves!

“Finally My Saviour is Here” November 12, 2010

Posted by Leticia Rojas in Haphazard, Things.
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There are few things I love better than live music. Unfortunately  I have zero talents for singing or playing any sort of instrument, but I do have ears that could listen for hours to any and all music (except Country, that’s where I draw the line).

I have been waiting to see La Roux since I first discovered her song, “Bulletproof” on a drive to work, a peppy Spring day, with the windows down and the radio up. Her voice and the sound was unlike a lot of other music on the pop scene these days, and fans of classic rock, glamorous 80s and other eccentric music desperately needed to be saved from the Lady Gaga’s infesting the radio. I know that sounds harsh, but it is what it is. I had been waiting to hear music that really tugged at my musical heart strings, because I’d practically exhausted all the tunes from the 50s-90s and I needed something new to make me happy and La Roux was and IS the perfect fit.

I can’t even put into words how much I adore her. She is beautiful. Her style is original and impeccable. Her personality, at least in interviews, seems genuine and quite hilarious. It’s borderline crazy how obsessed I am with her, so I’m not going to dig myself a hole and delve into it further. But hey, everyone has these healthy obsessions, right?

Needless to say, after I bought the album, loved every song, and listened to the album for two months straight (maybe longer, and I wouldn’t even click the FM/AM button) I was anxious to see her live! I heard she was scheduled to perform at 9:30 club, but the show had been cancelled, sold out and rescheduled… so when I saw she was going to be in Baltimore at Ram’s Head Live I bought them right away! The show ended up being cancelled as well, because she had been sick with bronchitis. So essentially, I had waited since June to see her, and finally saw her on Sunday, November 7th.

La Roux's Elly Jackson

Blurred La Roux

I took very few pictures because I was dancing/singing the entire time. Except when I stopped to record her cover of The Rolling Stones’ “Under My Thumb”, which is awesome. But again, it’s worth saying she is beautiful and very talented.

For those that aren’t into the whole neo 80s, synth pop deal, all of her songs are made with acoustic guitar and sounds just as brilliant. I cannot wait until she has an acoustic album. To me, music is more than just the actual sound, but the lyrics, and the feelings they bring. She awakens so much within me, and I will openly thank her here for that.

I drove 3 hours, back and forth, to see her live at a very nice, spacious venue – kudos to Ram’s Head. If you haven’t checked out her music, other than listening to “Bulletproof” radio over and over again, check her out on YouTube. I’ll be here, anxiously awaiting her next performance.

Pet Peeves October 15, 2010

Posted by Leticia Rojas in Haphazard.
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Why do they call it a pet peeve anyways? Pets generally make people happy. And I don’t know what a peeve is on its own… but together they create this phrase that so many people know about. So instead of doing extensive research on where this word came about I just entrusted the job to Wikipedia and brought it here for you. This will be a short blog, and I’m writing it because I am peeved that I can’t fall asleep but I’ve already studied all the finance problems my brain can handle within a 24-hour period. I’ll be sure to add to this, because I have a long list of peeves… but these are those that have happened most recently.

  1. Women who don’t flush the toilet and/or leave their pee, or even worse, all over the toilet. Seriously? If you’re old enough to use a toilet on your own without holding mommy’s hand than you are old enough to know that a public restroom is not your home and you need to respect the fact that there will be people using the bathroom after you and janitors have feelings, too.
  2. Women who don’t wash their hands after using the restroom. Again, “ladies” you’re not at home. If you want to be gross and disgusting in the privacy of your own home and leave a trail of disease behind you go ahead. But please wash your hands while you’re out in public. I hate the feeling of knowing a woman just left the loo and thinking about what she’s going to hold/touch next… could it be the fruit I pick out at the grocery store, or the doorknob I turn to enter a classroom, or the book I check out at the library? Actually it’s very likely it will be all those things and more… do you really need to make the world a filthier place? It takes roughly 30 seconds, tough it out! You don’t need to haul your water in a bucket from miles away or collect pigs fat and oatmeal to make your own soap… all the modern day necessities are there for you! Who knew? I guess if you’re one of those that don’t wash your hands you didn’t notice.
  3. Please note that I’m only picking on the ladies because I am a female and I use only the woman’s restroom. I don’t want to imagine but I can imagine how much filthier dudes can be but ignorance is bliss so I’m moving on.
  4. People who cut me off. People who cut me off without using their signal light. I hate you, that’s it.
  5. Superstars, or rather people who think they are superstars. I thought today’s world was all about equality and justice and not talking about yourself all day long. If you deserve it and you want to give yourself a pat on the back, great or treat yourself to some new whatever thing you’ve been wanting, woo hoo. Share it with someone, that actually cares, and move on. You’re not better than me or anyone else I know, you just have a dozen more ways to express yourself in. Note that I am talking about “superstars” that are the talkative, judgmental types. The ones that feel like their opinions are the fruit of the earth’s divine creation. So please don’t be offended if you like to congratulate yourself once in awhile, I enjoy giving credit where credit is due and I will share my happiness with you. Unless you get annoying and turn into a superstar… then I won’t.
  6. People that reek. Alright, this might be a sensitive subject for some people… maybe it’s against their religious/cultural beliefs to use artificial things like deodorant or take a shower… but seriously, do you not recognize your own stench?! Please take all the necessary precautions to not smell so badly around my nostrils! If you’re going to work up a sweat, use deodorant, be sure to shower after your workout, bring a change of clothes, bring perfume/body spray, use scented lotions, and baby powder all the sweaty spots! Anything to hold in the smell. This is not something that you can just go up and suggest to someone, so I’m putting this on my peeves list to let it be known.
  7. I know so many people agree with this next one, be quiet when you’re in the library. I know we’re not in the 1950s where we have Miss Librarian with her thick, black rimmed glasses and top notch bun in her hair shushing us to silence every time we make a peep, but jeez… is it too much to ask to keep your conversation outside of the library? Especially at Mason, there are SO many places to converse… the many coffee shops, the cafeteria, outside, etc. Why do you need to talk about what you’re going to do this weekend while I’m in the library trying to concentrate? Everyone is burning negative comments about you in their heads, so be quiet or step out, please and thank you.
  8. Speaking of people who talk… loudly. To all those people who speak into their cell phones like it’s a megaphone, I don’t know if anyone’s ever told you this… but it’s annoying and obnoxious. Especially the ones that I’m helping at work, and you pick up the phone in a huff and I have to find out some weird, personal thing about you because you didn’t want to call someone back or at least excuse yourself and step out to speak in relative private. Maybe these people just like to announce their business to the world because it makes them feel somewhat important, but I beg to differ. Just lower your voice a bit, good grief.
  9. This one is a very recent pet peeve. Commercials on YouTube, and I’m not talking about VEVO! Even though VEVO is just as lame. My boyfriend suggested we boycott YouTube, but he watches YouTube like it’s his part-time job, so I doubt he will follow through. And besides, it’s still free… it’s one of those pet peeves that I’m going to have to put up with, hmph.
  10. My mother (insert evil laugh here).

I think I should stop at five pet peeves before I give off this massive, cynical vibe to the four, give or take, people that might actual be reading this. But know this, I have many more pet peeves. But also know this, for as many pet peeves that I have… I have about a dozen more things that interest me. I still have a very childlike view of the world, and I’m not sure yet if that’s working for or against me as I soon approach “reality”. Oh, and sorry for the lack of pictures… I’m not sure what I would take pictures of other than my disgruntled face with these various issues in the background. And I apologize for the boring, no originality title… maybe I’ll change it, or maybe I won’t.