Hype

I don’t know about you, but I don’t often let myself watch, do, or read things if I’ve heard too much hype about them.

There’s something that just turns me off from any book or movie when I know that other people have liked it. Which sounds like a personal problem, I know.

But I think what that really tells you is that when people really want you to like something they do, it all comes down to your personal experience, no matter what they say to convince you. Recommendations and reviews are no match for your experience.

So, don’t ever take someone’s word for it. See for yourself. In that way, you’ll live your best life, experiencing things the way only you were meant to experience them.

Love,

Bailey

On My Way!

As I was commuting to work on Friday, you know, taking my car to the train to the bus that gets me to work, I realized we’re always on our way somewhere.

We’re always on our way to finishing a movie or a book. Me personally, I’m always on my way to growing out my hair or losing weight. And everyone, everywhere, is on a road to a better them. Or just on a road, driving.

But I’m asking, why can’t we ever just be here? You have arrived at your destination. Why can’t we accept ourselves in the present tense?

So, I am asking you to forget all about your to-do list and your destinations. Consider the journey. And know that wherever you’re going, you’ll get there in time. As soon as you enjoy the ride.

 

Love,

Bailey

Isn’t It Pretty to Think So?

Do you ever get the feeling that people are in love with the idea of life, but not life itself?

That we’re all waiting for someone to start filming our lives so that we can play out the scene and deliver our lines? That we’re all waiting for our boss to say something really snarky because we have the perfect comeback? That we’re all waiting for our significant other to break up with us so we can stereotypically eat ice cream and binge watch Dirty Dancing? That we’re all waiting for it to rain so that we can kiss someone in it? That we’re all waiting to take a cruise so we can stand at the helm with our arms out like Kate Winslet?

It’s like we’re all waiting for our lives to look like something. Waiting for them to be “perfect.”

I like to refer to this idea as “Isn’t It Pretty to Think So?.” Stolen from Hemingway, it simply encapsulates the idea that life is really poetic, but we still try to force it into something that is meaningful to us.

I mean, it is really beautiful how most things in life come together in a way that you would have never expected but should have expected all along. And yet we still spend so much time trying to force the pieces into place, gluing everything down so that it doesn’t blow into the breeze, even though the breeze is what will guide us, if we let it.

I see a lot of people fall under the spell of “Isn’t It Pretty to Think So?” when they fall in love with someone new, and they think that they’re perfect together because they both like corn dogs and they both love to talk about how bad the last season of American Horror Story was. But I also see people who build up events or experiences in their head until they could not possibly go the way they had planned, even if it wasn’t just “pretty to think” that it would go a certain why.

So, how do you avoid thinking pretty? You simply remember that your life isn’t a Hemingway novel. Or a Fitzgerald novel. Or a Shakespearean play. Or a Quentin Tarantino film (thank goodness?). You write your own life, from beginning to end. And it’s messy, and confusing, and frustrating, and weird, and terrific, and great, and inspiring, and depressing, and glorious.

And oh yeah, it is also always, always perfect, no matter how bad or good it seems.

It’s About Time

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My boyfriend and I had one of those rare weekends where we caught up on everything we’ve been meaning to do. We went places we wanted to go, we ate food we wanted to try, and we spent time with people we wanted to spend time with (mostly each other, but also ourselves.)

In a rare twist of events, we even had time to watch a movie. Of course, we had to watch it in two parts because you can’t survive a two hour movie when your bedtime during the week is an hour before sunset. But, somehow, with plenty of caffeine, we made it through the sci-fi/rom-com About Time, a movie we had been wanting to see since it was in theatres. Incredibly and ironically, we hadn’t had time to watch it before then. Even more ironically, it definitely was about time we watched it; it was very good.

We settled in for Rachel McAdams’s girl-next-door charm and Bill Nighy’s typically convincing but also rather creepy performance. I was drawn in by the quirky romance, while my boyfriend, I suspect, was waiting for the banana peel to fall and the romantic part to fade away into the comedy aspect.

The plot centers around a young man, played by Domhnall Gleeson, who is told quite unceremoniously about 15 minutes into the movie that all of the men in his family can travel in time. Suddenly, he has the gift that every dorky, quiet person (which he portrays) has ever dreamed of: the ability to start over at any point in a conversation. He keeps the memory of what has happened previously, but no one else has any idea, except his father. As a romantic comedy, you can guess the hilarity that ensues. Boy meets girl, boy messes up his one-liner to girl, boy runs away only to come back to suavely pose the one-liner again to girl with much better results.

But, being as vague as possible, the ending surprised us. Towards the last half hour, the movie did not bear any resemblance to the goofy rom-com we signed up for. It turned strangely dark, albeit with a purpose.

To sum up its concluding moral: you should live every day like you have to relive that day tomorrow. Confused?

Then let’s explore this for a moment. What do most of us do? We trudge along. We put our heads down. We tell ourselves this mantra, “It’s Monday. Tomorrow is Tuesday. And if I can get through Tuesday, I can get through Wednesday. And if I can get through Wednesday, I can drink four Starbucks coffees to get me through Thursday and Friday. And then it’s the weekend. And I’ll be blissfully happy for two days.”

But what if you had to relive today? Would you moan and whine about the coffee you spilled on yourself, the traffic you experienced, and the absolute rushed madness of your life? Or would you already be expecting all of those difficult parts of your day, and so you would be able to take the time to slow down and relish the finer points?

Essentially, we congratulate ourselves for the days we can get through instead of the days we can enjoy. So, I have a challenge for you. Try living tomorrow like you have to relive the whole day again. What would you do differently to ensure that you had a pleasant experience the first and second time? Would you slow down to appreciate more things? Or would you speed up to get to all of the good parts? We can’t time travel (yet), so we can’t undo or redo all of those embarrassing and difficult moments we may experience. But we can learn from them.

And it’s about time we all started to do exactly that.

Because what is life?

It’s all about time and what we do with it.