Posts Tagged ‘childhood’

Deep Issues

Posted: February 6, 2013 in Ramblings
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I haven’t blogged in months, partly because I attempted to start a new project…and because I am who I am, I start and don’t often complete projects. Since I last blogged, a lot has happened. I’m seeing someone, started a new job and have been endlessly torturing myself internally. The amount of relief I get from writing is why I’m back, and can’t speak to if this will be a more permanent return.

I have been having sessions with Dr. S, and have revealed some very deep issues that I have. I don’t easily trust people, I don’t really like myself, I have an extreme desire to please others, and I feel alone. I have been processing a lot of these realizations, but they really all gelled together recently with hearing a song. I played that song on repeat for 7 days straight, on the subway, at work, in the shower, etc.

I don’t trust people easily, I put up a wall, I become more rigid around strangers because of a massive fear of rejection. I believe that putting up a wall will protect me from a world of hurt, and I consequently shut out people who don’t intend to hurt and somehow still let in those crafty enough to let me let my guard down. I think my fear of rejection stems from what’s been identified by Dr. S as a very poor self-image and low self esteem. I don’t enjoy being photographed, I don’t often look in the mirror, I took take pride in what I wear/etc and rely on this notion that my ‘natural state’ is good enough and a sign that I’m beyond caring. Yet, the very opposite is true, as I seem to care greatly about the opinion of others.

I have built up so much of my life on the opinion of others. Having been neglected as a child, having a brother who received all of the attention, I learned to differentiate myself with my intellect. I’ve built up an entire ego or core on my brain, something that could never be taken from me and up until recently has always helped me. Now, it seems that I’m realizing that I can come off as condescending, that my intelligence is palpable and the crux of this is that I’m trying to prove my intellect…continually. This isn’t something that I had realized, but Dr. S has pointed out some actions that lead me to believe that much of what I do is truly to impress others, and to regain that attention that I never had — doing so in the way that has always worked for me. Black kid who is smart is rare in many parts, and propelled me through school. Now in this corporate environment, it’s become something of a liability. I know that I’m smart, and I constantly try to prove that (implicitly) and that’s off putting.

All of this feeds into a desire to please people, take on as many challenges as possible and kill myself in my current job. I haven’t really taken the time for myself, to treat myself; instead, I have been running from a fear of loneliness. Being smart, being XYZ hasn’t done much to help me make friends, get into a relationship or be successful at work (to some degree, yes, but in other ways, no). I fear that because everything I do is to please others or the approval of others, if I stopped doing that I would be alone. I truly don’t care what others think (for the most part), but I also hate being alone. How can I reconcile being myself and still wanting to be around people? I haven’t yet found a balance, but my solution has usually been to cater to others. While those who know me will find this hard to believe, I cater more to others than one could ever really imagine — relative to what I want to do.

So why is this all important? I have had these realizations over a month long period of time in a piece meal fashion, and the main linkage was this song from Glee.

When I listen to every word that is being sung in this song, it kills me. I didn’t know why it had such an effect on me when I first heard it. However, after several days and 1000s of listens: it hit me. I have such a fear of rejection, being alone and building walls that I don’t know how to let someone love me. I don’t even think I know what love is — and if I did, would I be able to recognize and appreciate it?

Much as you blame yourself, you can’t be blamed for the way you feel
Had no example of a love, that was even remotely real
How can you understand something that you never had
Ooh baby if you let me, I can help you out with all of that

Let me love you
And I will love you
Until you learn to love yourself

The way I’ve constructed myself is so disastrous for me. It’s crazy how  the lyrics of this song echo all of me not knowing from a lack of an example of what love is — and here I mean this much more broadly than romantic love. How can I understand something that I’ve never had? How can I appreciate something I’ve never felt before? And then It hit me: If I never learn to love myself, how can I ever let anyone love me?

I can see the pain behind your eyes
It’s been there for quite a while
I just wanna be the one to remind what it is to smile
I would like to show you what true love can really do

And then the song continues, and I realize that maybe so many have seen the pain behind my eyes but I’ve never really felt comfortable letting anyone ‘in.’ And the few that I have or who have come close, I usually push away. It’s actually such a depressing realization. And I couldn’t for the life of me understand why this song stayed glued to my brain until it finally hit me. And then I think — have I met this person to make me feel this way, or is this what I’m looking for? And will I ever find it if I haven’t, and could I ever really know?

And that felt good to put to paper.


Short Film: Portrait

Posted: December 28, 2011 in Everything
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Interesting when you think about how photographers really do ask you to do things that warrant the worst pictures

via Thought Catalog

Here, a primer for when your future children want to know what the hell you were doing with your boxy, multicolored electronics.
While most things we experienced as tots in that headiest of eras seems pretty self-explanatory (plaid was everywhere, Leonardo DiCaprio was the molten ball of light around which the solar system turned, and there was no color too bright for your sweatpants) there are some things that will be a bit harder to explain. Here, a primer for when your future children want to know what the hell you were doing with your boxy, multicolored electronics.

1. Topanga was at some point in human history considered not only a legitimate first name for a human being, but the kind of name that would inspire in malleable teenage boys a life-long infatuation. Topanga, in our day, was leading lady name-material. Topanga (pronounced Tah-payne-ga, for those who will have only ever seen in it written down) is the name of the quintessential girl-next-door who will live, along with Feeney, in our hearts forever.

2. At some point, we carried around little plastic eggs with tiny screens on them — in these screens lived our hearts, our pets, our raison d’etre, our very own Tomagotchi. We loved them, we listened to their tiny electronic screams of malnourishment, and we occasionally forgot to pick up their poop for long enough that they died a tortured, poop-filled death. They were perhaps our first foray into the life-consuming world of electronics and self-absorption, later to be fully manifested by Facebook.

3. The black Power Ranger was black and the yellow Power Ranger was Asian because…we were so completely ahead of our time and beyond the capacity to even think in terms of something as inconsequential as race that… uh… I don’t know. Casting directors were racist in the nineties.

4. Long before he was spending his days foisting his mediocre children on us, Will Smith was actually the perfect human specimen. He also undoubtedly holds some world record for saving the world the most times while simultaneously delivering flawless catchphrases and giving cool guy nods to the camera. The Men In Black rap song, at the time, was created and received by the public without the slightest trace of irony. Really. He was that good.

5. In some inevitable shift of the time-space continuum in which James Cameron continues to rob humanity of all that is good and sacred in this world, Fern Gully will be known as that movie that ripped off Avatar. It will be up to us to crusade for what is right. It is up to us to explain that Fern Gully was not only a predecessor to Avatar, but far better, in that it contained both Tim Curry as a singing pile of molasses and Robin Williams rapping about animal testing in the pharmaceutical industry. (As a side note, if you have not recently listened to the full lyrics of the “Batty Rap,” I recommend you do, as they are horrifying.)

6. A neighborhood boy who completely disregards your family and puts a ladder directly under the teenage girl’s window to climb up at his discretion is not only acceptable, it’s charming. It’s the kind of stuff that would make said family take the ladder boy under their wing and into their heart. The nineties were a simpler time, one where we didn’t have to worry about things like breaking and entering. Clarissa today would have steel bars on the inside of her window and her father would continually remind her that the next-door boy with his ladder and his touchy hands have no place in his household.

7. Though on the surface, they are the exact same thing in every conceivable way, whether you liked The Backstreet Boys or N*SYNC said more about your character than all of the terrible macaroni art you could ever make for your child psychologist. Essentially, liking N*SYNC meant you liked Justin Timberlake, as he was clearly the Seabiscuit in that race from the get-go. You even liked him with his terrible, icy-blond mini-fro. Liking the Backstreet Boys gave you a bit more of a cultured palate, as there was no clear Diana in those Supremes. Nick was kind of the wholesome, if northern-Florida-redneck safe choice (save for his humiliating younger brother, Aaron). Bryan was the shy, sensitive type. AJ was the hottt, dangerous meth addict. Kevin Richardson was mute with sexy, sculpted facial hair. No one liked Howie. Choosing between the two groups was like choosing between two beloved children, but once that line was crossed–there was no going back.

8. “I wanna really really really wanna zig a zig ahh,” has a meaning, and all true nineties kids know it, but we must never share it. Like the Illuminati, it must remain between us, the keyholders. With great power comes great responsibility.

9. Lisa Frank is not the name of a woman, it is the name of a movement, a culture, a way of living. It is a theory, a concept, a belief in something greater than yourself. It is the belief that all girls are entitled to dolphins covered with rainbows, jewel-encrusted frogs, and unicorns in acid-trip colors hugging each other. It is the ideology that no notebook is complete until it literally hurts your eyes to look at from so much color saturation. It is the hope that no school supply, no matter how insignificant, will be left un-bedazzled. It is the knowledge that your eraser cap, and that of your granddaughter’s, and her granddaughter’s after her, will not be some boring little nub–it will be a diamond covered with butterflies in a rainbow of colors. It is the dream of a better tomorrow.

10. Incredibly depressing women in Indiana covered in cats and glass figurines they buy at The Hallmark Store used to troll the web 1.0 to invest thousands of dollars in tiny stuffed animals filled with plastic beans. That happened. Beanie Babies were not just significant, they were the first example most of us had of envy, greed, and wrath. If someone messed up that little heart-shaped Ty tag, so help you God, that was the end of whatever contact you had with that monster of a human being. That tag-less Beanie Baby was now trash, and you had to deal with the consequence. It was at that moment, that de-valued Beanie Baby moment, that most of us accepted the truth… we’ll never have nice things.

Disturbing trend: Kids on YouTube

Posted: November 21, 2011 in Ramblings

Lately many parents have ‘helped’ their children gain internet notoriety by posting videos of them crying.

I thought it was funny when Jimmy Kimmel did it with parents telling their kids that their Halloween candy had been eaten. But unprompted, the videos seem less funny and more like exploitation. The recent crop have been focused on parents getting the reactionms of 6 years old devastated that their favorite football team lost.

While I can see that the difference is marginal between the situations, but toddlers should not know that much about football. The boy crying about the Jets can barely form coherent sentences even when he’s not crying, and he probably doesn’t understand fractions. Yet he knows about the different contingency plans that it takes for his favorite team to reach the Super Bowl. I would imagine that a lot of this has to do with parental influence, which is why it’s a bit bothersome.

I should point out that YouTube is a free service and I’m not talking about censorship, but both videos were picked up by the national news. Has anyone forgotten about our bullying problem? Someone will find that video and those kids are going to hate their parents a lot, or do something regrettable.

Top 10 Best Happy Meal Toys – I agree with this list and I remember playing with most of them. The dalmatians were my favorite.

Gay TV Characters – Bert & Ernie, Spongebob, Vanity Smurf, Peppermint Paddy, Velma, Piglet & Stewie



Childhood TV

Posted: October 3, 2010 in Videos
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ONTD recently had a post about the 10 greatest theme songs of TV shows, and I became all kinds of nostalgic for the shows that I watched everyday growing up.

Here are some of my favorites from that post…You have to click to see more as there are about 10 videos.


Keith Haring: Art x Fashion

Posted: September 2, 2010 in Fashion
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via Fashion Indie

When I was in 8th grade studio art class, I painted a mural in my school. It was part of the class that each student paint a panel in the hallway, and it was very nerve-wracking because we had to paint over the course of time. So when classes ended people would see half-masterpieces.
It got so bad (we had to mix the colors ourselves) that my teacher decided to give me a Haring painting instead of my 10-day debacle with Cezanne. To make it worse, they actually used an overhead projector and outlined it for me. So I just painted it. And as you can see below, his works are pretty much filling in the boxes once the lines are pre-drawn for you.
Ladies and Gents, I’m a terrible artiste. But I do appreciate the memories of that humbling time and respect how this is being incorporated into shoes.

Keith Haring by Nicholas Kirkwood Footwear Collection Preview

When I was younger, I wanted to be, among many things (artist, doctor, etc), an architect. But then I was terrible at drawing, and my love of K’nex and Lego products just didn’t seem like they would translate into much. Man, I really did love to construct things, and I still have K’nex in my closet and many, many fond memories of spending time building things. One notable creation was a ‘harness’ type device that held books so that I could read without using my hands.

In any event, I found a few pictures in a forum that reminded me of what I left behind and will undoubtedly never have a part in creating.

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One of my…I don’t know if I can call it a favorite…but maybe a guilty pleasure is ‘Mommie Dearest.’

I don’t care that the movie is considered a cult movie or camp classic, primarily because of the focus on the life of Joanne Crawford – I don’t even know who that is really. The quick and dirty on the movie is that it’s about a famous movie star who adopts children, yet is hardly maternal. The film is based on her daughter’s expose of a famous star and was quite the movie when it debuted.

And the most famous scene is this one above, which accurately captures the portrayal of a crazy woman. She gets upset with her daughter because she’s using wire hangers even though Joanne has brought nicer, fancy hangers. After this moment, she beats her daughter with said wire hanger and tears up the clothes in the girl’s closet. Subsequently, she tells her daughter that the bathroom isn’t clean enough and goes on another tirade. Next scene: shipped off to boarding school.

That scene is pretty good, but it’s hardly my favorite. The reason I love this movie is because I reflect on my childhood in a similar way. I mean sure, I got what I wanted a lot of the time and had no real complaints but something just wasn’t right about it. The daughter, Christina, wrote this autobiography that turned into a movie to get back at her mother. Joanne cut Christina out of the will. Mistake! Back to my main point. Christina grew up as a Hollywood child, which seems totally fine by most material means. And you know, since she was adopted I guess you can say Christina’s life was greatly improved. I think about my own experience in the same way.