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Happy Holidays!

(I decided to go with Happy Holidays because I missed Thanksgiving but it’s not Christmas. Happy Holidays is a happy medium ūüôā )

So today, I have been thinking all day about putting up my Christmas tree, but it made me a little sad to think about putting it up alone. Let me give you a little background. Christmas is my favorite holiday. Besides the fact that it¬†acknowledges the birth of my Lord and Saviour, the general time around Christmas makes me happy. There is a built-in “make me smile” factor that surrounds the Christmas season…twinkling lights, cinnamon-y smells, hot chocolate, beautiful decorations. I have happy memories related to Christmas though. Besides the fact that it was a time that I got to see most of my extended family (until we were all too old to stay in one house, so everyone would have to get hotels, lol), I remember¬†a memory that always makes me happy.

My friend loved Christmas. I always liked the lights, but my mom was the kind of procrastinator that we’d be lucky if the tree was up by the 23rd. And since we normally went to another part of Louisiana for Christmas, so at best, we put cards up around the house and got a poinsettia. I didn’t have decorating memories. So during my sophomore year of college, he started sharing with me around Thanksgiving how excited he was about being able to decorate his (then, brand new) home for Christmas. He asked me to come with him to buy a tree and ornaments. I went, and he was like a big kid. He asked my opinion on which ornaments were nice, but not girly; If the tree was large enough (considering he was 6’4″…he didn’t want to be taller than the tree); if he needed two or three boxes of lights. He told me to go get cocoa while he grabbed Christmas mugs. We went back to his home and he found the 6 Christmas songs on his computer and put them on repeat. I remember that I sat on the couch to watch him “do his thing”. He said, “What are you doing??” I said, “Um…nothing.” He said, “Nooooo, you have to help. I’ll do the lights, and you decide which pretty ornaments go where, and then I’ll do all the fill-in ornaments.” He wanted me involved. And after it was done, he baked cookies (let me choose which ones I wanted first before he got his), made us hot chocolate in the new Christmas mugs, and then turned out the lights so he could light up the tree. He was so happy, lol. It was a good, dorky kind of happy that was infectious. He then thanked me for obliging him and sharing in his first home tree-trimming. And, I loved it just as much as he did. The event itself was nice, but I liked that he wanted me involved. And I ended up making him a cd with more than 6 songs, lol.

That next year, after doing the same thing, we went to the downtown display of Christmas lights. The streets were roped off, and you could walk block after block, stop at little shops, buy apple cider, etc… He wanted to do a little of everything. He was sad because he had just had shoulder surgery (he was a pitcher for my university’s baseball team) so he could only operate one arm, but he still enjoyed himself. He bought cider for us, and we walked all night until it closed, laughing at things (and people), and again, he thanked me for sharing the memories with him. It was that Christmas that we exchanged gifts. He got me a stuffed cocker spaniel puppy (I still love that thing, lol) and I got him a print of Muhammad Ali knocking out Frazier (which he loved).

Things between us changed after that, but we were always friends.¬†I had relationships after that, and with each one I always wanted to cultivate something special. Something distinctly ours. Except…they were never interested. My five-year-relationship guy always seemed mildly annoyed when I wanted him to help me put up my tree, so I tried other things. None of them worked, and he never offered any suggestions. The only thing we did on a regular was visit his mom on Sundays, but nothing explicitly ours. He would say things like, “I thought about taking you to the jazz club.” “I thought about us driving to little cities around here to try whatever they were known for.” I literally begged for almost two years to go to Stone Mountain to see the laser show. I was so excited when I finally went, but he still had a mild indifference. I wanted to hold hands and share a blanket, but he brought a (single) folding chair, saying he thought the ground would be too hard (He said, “I know you have one…I thought you would’ve brought yours too. My bad”). I’m pretty sure that this constant (what I saw as) rejection created a layer that I started to stop asking or expecting moments that were “special”.

charlotte - harry - breakupSo when I say Un-tradition-al…I mean that the most meaningful experiences that set standards for things I’ve wanted were/are with people whom I could only call friends. It is with these people that I have the happiest memories. But the relationships I’ve had, they were all missing that something special. Even now, …well…nevermind. Just know that I have had more special moments¬†recently that I have had¬†in a long time … and it’s a friend. So I can imagine Charlotte’s dismay with Harry when he wanted to watch the baseball game after she had converted to Judaism and cooked a Shabbat meal. To him, he appreciated what she did, but it was another dinner during a game. To her, she was starting to create traditions with someone she cared about. Now, I can’t condone the statements she made to him afterwards, but I can understand (Season 6, “Pick a Little, Talk a Little”).

So, whether it was figuring out how to staple Christmas lights around your window without electrocuting anyone, or inadvertently creating a special language that only two people understand, traditions are nice. I hope that one day, I’ll have them with someone who’ll actually be with me.

Do you have any traditions you’d like to share? It’s the holidays, after all ūüėČ

Love,

–V

P.S. No, my Christmas tree isn’t up. Not yet.

I hate* my friends.

Heart to Heart...

They consistently try to point out logic and truth when I don’t want to hear it. I was talking to one of my friends about my timidity of trusting someone and stepping out into relational waters again. She said, “Like, real talk? Not about him, or about your ex, because you haven’t said anything negative about him since the new year, but you have been throwing major shade at yourself. You are letting someone’s past actions dictate how you act, even if it is ‘in spite of.’ You are responding to him in defense of what you think he’ll do, and you need to remember that he is not your ex. You can’t treat him like he is, or like he will be. You have to let him be him, and take it how it goes. I’m not saying don’t be cautious, but don’t do this.”

*crickets* ūüė≥

I gave the only response that I could give in that moment….

…”No, YOU stupid.”

We both cracked up. I acknowledged what she said, but thought about it on the car ride home. How much credit do we give our past in how we go about our present? I hate the idea that my past relationship can have that much power over the things I do right now. Who is really running these decisions that I make?

Another friend of mine called me a cold freezer today. He said I either have some hellified defense mechanisms, or I really don’t care. I believe it is the former. Only your friends can tell you those things about yourself that you don’t really want to hear. Or acknowledge. They can call into question your actions that you don’t want to analyze for yourself. They can make you view it so even if you decide to keep doing what you’re doing, you’re doing it consciously. Doesn’t that suck? Miranda did it for Charlotte in SATC 2: the movie. She forced her to admit that motherhood is not always nice, fun, or wanted. Only then could she really say what she wanted or needed, and stop running herself crazy or being resentful.

The ending of my last relationship¬†blindsided me. In hindsight it should not have, but in the moment, it did. I keep wondering if I will walk into another head-on collision unprepared, so I’m checking every nook and cranny for possible signs. My friend said if I continue to do that, it in and of itself will cause¬†the accident I was looking for. (She didn’t state it in this manner, but you know, implications and whatnot.) So I can admit this: I’m scared.

*sigh* ūüėē

Can’t you see why I hate* my friends? I just can’t right now. Goodnight ūüôā

Love,

–V

* hate here means desperately thankful for even if I don’t admit it in the moment. This definition stops at the culmination of this post, and is only active within the confines of the post itself.

We’ve all been there (probably).

Been out with someone, and within fifteen minutes were thinking, “I could be doing something more important with my life right now, like counting ceiling tiles.” Guys generally end the evening. We girls, however, don’t do it that easily.

We have a plan.

This plan usually involves another friend, a phone call, a specific time frame (i.e. 15 minutes, or 9:42pm), a story that includes a flat tire or a possibly abusive boyfriend/end of a relationship, and an immediate emergency that only the person on the date can handle.

And we’re proud of it.

I was talking to a good friend of mine over the weekend as she was driving home from her hair appointment, and she was telling me about this guy she was spending time with who all of a sudden started irritating her. She said, “Girl! I¬†texted my friend and said to call me with an emergency in fifteen minutes. It was bad because she was saying crazy stuff and I was trying not to laugh and blow my cover!”

This reminded me of Season 5 (Hop, Skip, and a Week) when Carrie and Berger went out to eat, and were sitting down less than 10 seconds when Charlotte burst out of nowhere. She was freaking out because she was on a horrible blind date and had to get out of there. She asked Carrie to call and say something bad happened so she could ditch dude. Of course, it worked. Berger, on the other hand, couldn’t figure out why she wouldn’t just end the date.

Why is that? If a guy isn’t feeling a girl he’s out with, I doubt he is texting his homeboy to bail him out. (But if you are, please let me know. I’ll happily edit this.) He’ll just talk to him later, starting the conversation with “You won’t believe this chick I went out with! She *insert random stalkerish-crazy-idiotic-ignorant behavior*! I won’t be talking to her anymore…unless she is gonna give me some.”

I have some stories. A friend of mine once asked me to call her, and the story I told her was pretty good. She started crying (for effect) and eventually cried for real (it took her a while to stop). saying that the story made her think of a past relationship. I told her, “Dude. It didn’t¬†really happen.”¬†The guy called her all night (literally…every. 25. minutes.) trying to make sure she was okay. I’m pretty sure it had the opposite effect than what she was going for.

I even remember preventative escape plan stories. One of my favorite “bonding” moments with my linesister Alisha was in college, and it was a bunch of us in my dormroom. She said she was at a party, and some random guy she was talking to earlier called her to see where she was. I guess she wasn’t feeling him, and she said, “See, I was slick. I told him I was outside on the left side…but I was outside on the right side.” We all cracked up (Maybe you had to be there…or know how Alisha talks for this to be funny, but trust me, it was hilarious at 3 in the morning… #memories).

Do you have any exit strategy stories? I’d like to hear them!

Love,

-V

“I’ve been dating since I was fifteen! I’m exhausted! Where is he???!!”

This is undoubtedly Charlotte’s most famous line of the show, from “Where There’s Smoke…” in Season 3 (Ep. 1). It was put on t-shirts, bags, and became the unofficial motto of the woman who was ready to get married. However, what was mostly overlooked was what she said almost immediately beforehand (in her hungover state), in response to a conversation about why firemen were so cute, even when they aren’t:

It’s because women just want to be rescued.” There it was: the phrase independent single women in their thirties are never supposed to think, let alone say aloud.

Carrie’s response to Charlotte’s declaration was, “Sweetie, did you ever think that maybe we’re the white knights, and that we have to rescue ourselves?” Charlotte’s response? “That is so depressing,” before plopping her head back into her arms. Carrie’s “Is it??” went unanswered, and you could tell the women were contemplative on the matter.

I was thinking about this after having several conversations with a close friend. Is this accurate? No matter how many Beyonce-esque SingleLadiesIndependentWomenIrreplaceable type songs we hear, ultimately would we honestly want to do as “Kanye the wise” would say, “…trade it all for a husband and some kids”?¬†

My¬†homegirl and I debated this using the context of my “situation” as the basis. I’ve been sick lately (sinus infection, ugh) and haven’t been to work in a few days. I can honestly say that my friend took great care of me…bringing me medicine and food, checking to see what the doctor said, making me tea, etc… Since this occurrence, I have felt a bit more emotionally attached in a way that I can honestly say I wasn’t a week prior. Is that the innate want of the “protected” to be taken care of by the “protector”? Jury’s out I tell ya, but this is something to think about.

Even our “Queen”, Beyonce, who makes all these independent women songs, has Jay-Z’s name on her fingernails. After wrapping the set of “Video Phone” with Lady GaGa, she was captured saying, “I’m glad this is over…I’m going to see my husband. I’m happy! I’m happy!” I’m not saying she doesn’t believe in what she’s saying, but is it a bit easier to sell because she’s already been “rescued”?

I’m curious folks. What do you think? Here’s a little music for thought.

Love,

-V

Before I get started, let me say that this week is the final week of my quarter, and I am finishing a research proposal. I am almost done.  Yay me.

Okay, now on with it. I decided to do a little series on my favorite things, but to break them down by character. So these are items that I own that remind me of a character on the show. Charlotte is up first, because she was easiest to categorize.

My Favorite Things: Charlotte

So here we have ribbon and pearl necklace by New York & Company, Sarah Jessica Parker’s “Lovely” Eau de Parfum, Parisienne Satin and Crepe Platform Shoes by Christian Louboutin, MAC Victorian Lipstick and Prrr Lipglass, Evian Atomizer, a random printed headband, Paolo Giraffe Print shoes, Zoya’s Sally nail polish, and a card from my best friend.

  • It seems like when SJP made “Lovely,” it was to fit a Charlotte-esque type of girl. It is very soft and feminine without being flowery or fruity (both of which I hate in perfume). This is my favorite spring/summery scent. And the feminine shape of the bottle seems like it should belong on a dainty vanity.
  • Those giraffe print shoes just make me happy. I remember when I bought them on sale at Nordstrom…oh what a happy day that was. The neutrality of the print make them very conservative, but interesting.
  • These beauty items¬†and this accessory always make me feel very lady-like. Most people see that lipstick, Victorian, in the tube and are thinking, “Oh no brown girl.” It is very Barbie pink with a light golden frost. It’s all about the lipglass layered over it (Which is where Prrr comes in), and the right lipliner. I find that whenever I’m wearing that combination, I feel so girly. The pearls do the same thing…there is enough hardwear to be interesting, but the ribbons add interest for me. I love them ūüôā
  • Zoya’s Sally is very neutral. It is a beige/pink. It just seems to be the nail polish I’m going for when I want my nails to look sophisticated. I couldn’t imagine Charlotte with the bright Robin’s egg blue I have going on my nails and toes right now.
  • That headband is random, but I think it speaks for itself.
  • The Evian mister seems to be something that calls people to look at me with the side-eye whenever I pull it out. They say things like “You spent money on that?” Well, yes I did. And guess what, I am now no longer sweltering, while you are. So there.
  • The Lubu’s just scream posh chic. I could never imagine any of the other girls in them except Charlotte. Am I right?
  • That card from my friend was sent to me a few days after my breakup. Accompanying it was a box of goodies because she couldn’t be with me at the time. Even though I think the act itself is more Carrie, the sweetness of it is Charlotte. That’s why I love her.

                    

So here are my favorite “Charlotte” things. What do you think?

Love,

-V

A few days ago, ShoeDazzle sent out this email:

ShoeDazzleWhich CITY Girl Are You?Our stylists have chosen one of these shoes for you based on your style profile!Carrie - Miranda - Charlotte - Samantha

So I happily went to my shoeroom, and it said I was Charlotte.

*Gasp* Charlotte? Really? I wrinkled my nose up, and exited out of the site. Charlotte seemed so much less exciting in comparison to the other girls (and shoes…except those wedges. No words for those). I was talking to one of my co-workers, who was Samantha, and she said, “Yeah. You’re a Charlotte girl. And, you’re a Charlotte personality.”

Okay, so I had a miniature breakdown when I got home (well, not really, just a train of obsessive thoughts). Am I Charlotte? She seems so drab in comparison to the other girls. Am I drab? Carrie is edgy, Samantha is bold, Miranda is happily sarcastic and pessimistic, and Charlotte seems naively optimistic.

So, I got to thinking about my own self, and who I am. I am focused, with some very key morals. I may ride along with some things, but it is rare that you will get me to do something I think is wrong, or really don’t want to do. She can get influenced (Season 2, “They Shoot Single People, Don’t They?”), and she can lose her happy outlook on life (Season 5, “Unoriginal Sin”); she can be judgemental, and¬†a¬†¬†prude. She doesn’t always make the best decisions…like that unfortunate Trey experience.

As I thought about it, I am like that. I can be influenced and not always happy. I can be judgemental and a prude, and make horrible decisions. But, like her, I’m also fiercely loyal to my friends. My favorite Charlotte moment was in Sex and the City: The Movie, when Big tries to come after Carrie after standing her up.

"NO!...No!"

She was so angry. She cried. She hurt for her friend, and even “cursed the day he was born.” Each of these women has a role in their circle, and her happiness keeps them all a little grounded and corny. Her moving speech is what got them all to the Hamptons (and got her crabs…but that is another issue) for a vacation because they were moved by her love. Even Carrie had to dedicate her book to her friend, who always believes in love (Unoriginal Sin).

So, if I am Charlotte, I hope I am the type of friend to them that she is. She is not as flashy, or as loud or bold, but she is fly in her sophisticated way, and is one classy lady. So, Charlottes, wherever and whoever you may be, put on your best pearls, and celebrate your uniqueness. I happily join your ranks.

Charlotte, the Class Act

Charlotte, the Class Act

Love,

-V

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