NaNoWriMo and the Hike

You guys, of you are ever feeling stuck or uninspired in your writing, take a hike. Literally. I took a hike today, and I had two big epiphanies. Go alone or take a quiet friend. There’s something about being out in the quiet, listening to the birds and your own steady footsteps, that rattles loose some ideas and attracts whole new ones.

Now I’m off to write 2,014 words (at least!) of new ideas. 😊💜✍🏻💻

Thoughts After a Sporadic Run

Dear men who smile at me while I run, STOP. You look like a total creeper. Don’t make me pepper spray you.

Everything itches, so I’m pretty sure I’m allergic to my own sweat.

There are way too many people out and about at 8:00 in the morning. I need to wake up earlier.

Dear gardeners, fuck your leaf blower fumes.

I now have just twenty minutes to stretch and get ready for work. 👍🏻

It was worth it, though. I think.

On “White” American Culture

Okay, time for Rose’s unpopular opinion rant.

I wish people would stop saying there isn’t a “white” American culture. They say we can only be proud of our ancestral European heritage because black Americans had their ancestral African cultures stolen (by our ancestors). Somehow, black Americans deserve to have their own culture, but white Americans don’t. How does that make any sense? Our ancestral cultures may not have been stolen, but they were lost all the same.

First of all, if I go to England and claim to be English, they’re going to laugh in my face and tell me I’m American. I can no longer claim the culture of my ancestors. Neither can any of us whose families have been in the United States for more than a couple of generations. So what culture can we claim?

There’s a reason they call the United States a melting pot. European immigrants gave up a lot when they came here, including many parts of their cultures. What’s more American than pizza? Our Italian immigrants gave us that. What New Yorker doesn’t like a bagel? Jewish immigrants added that to our mix.

There is a culture that is distinct from those in Europe, from black American culture, from Chinese American culture, from Mexican American culture … It’s a bunch of European cultures melted into one, strange American thing. Most of the people who identify with this culture do happen to be white, but I still don’t feel comfortable calling it “white” American culture. It’s more like generic American culture or popular American culture.

But why is there this culture in America that is mostly white, that is prompting white supremacists to call it “white culture” and feel the need to protect it? Well, racism. Pervasive racism has kept the melting pot that is our country from melting down even further and creating one big, beautiful multiracial culture. Oh, there are pockets here and there where interracial families have melted a bit of culture with each passing generation. However, the majority of the country is still severely split.

There are those (like white supremacists) who will say it should be that way. You should be proud of your heritage and keep your culture separate. I’m sure there were plenty of European immigrants who felt the same way. Don’t marry the Catholic boy. Don’t go out with that German girl. I can’t believe you were impregnated by an Irish! But you know what? It fucking happened anyway. And now all those differences have been forgotten about in our little mixing bowl of “whiteness.”

Culture mixing is a thing in this country, and the only thing that is stopping it from happening is pervasive racism. So stop being so goddamned proud of your culture that you don’t want it to change for the better. Stop being so ashamed of your culture’s history that you deny its existence altogether. Acknowledge the past, open your eyes to the present, and move forward.

In the Works

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Look at that, the last time I made a video was the 16th of November last year! ^^;

I wanted to let you all know–so it won’t be a complete shock when I upload it–that I’m working on a YouTube video right now. I know, I know. It’s been FOR.EV.ER. Well, I’ve been watching a lot of vlogs, and I thought I would make a “week in the life” video, focusing on my depression and anxiety. Filming will end on Monday, and I’ll hopefully have it edited and uploaded by Friday. Keep an eye out on my YouTube channel for it.

All the Albariño Sangria

As you may or may not know, I work at a charming little diner in Winters, California called the Putah Creek Cafe. Most of my time there is spent serving, but about once a week I come in a couple hours early to make sangria. I’m known as the Sangria Girl. This makes me happy in the silliest way.

Well, today I’m a little late getting on the floor to serve because I made four extra cambros of white peach sangria. One cambro holds four and a half gallons of sangria. That’s eighteen gallons total. I used six cases of wine, twenty apples, four pineapples, a dozen mangos, two and a half pounds of grapes, and roughly a ton of preach purée. That’s a lot of sangria.

Why? Tomorrow is the second annual Albariño Wine Stroll here in Winters, and we’ll be serving up a special sangria made with Raimat Albariño. I’ll be working after 5:30 that night, and I’m excited to see our bartender serve up this special sangria and tell people that I made it. 😉

Come in and see me! I’ll actually be here all day because I’m working a double, so if you can’t make it to the wine stroll, come see me anyway!

Breakfast for the Cluck Ups

These are four of the thirteen chickens we were gifted when we first moved to the area over three years ago. This morning I gave them some old bread for breakfast, which they promptly abandoned in favor of fresh insects and crisp grass. Again, just felt like sharing. My partner nicknamed them the “cluck ups,” though I wish I could take the credit for it. 

Have a beautiful humpday!

New God and Goddess Candles

Lately, I’ve been feeling perpetually exhausted. I think it’s just the time of my menstrual cycle, but it’s put me out of commission my last few days off. Anyway, I spent most of today in bed reading and watching Rick and Morty, but when it came time to pick up le boyfriend from work, I decided I had the energy to pop into a couple stores and pick up some paint and candles. (Luck was on my side, as there wasn’t too much traffic and a parking spot opened up right away.)


Any-anyway, these candles are the result. I haven’t put the varnish on them yet because I’m still waiting for the paint to dry, but I rather like them already. Just wanted to share. 😊 I like that you can see the brush strokes; I think the light will shine through them nicely.

I want to post more bloggy type blog posts like this, and some vloggy vlogs on YouTube as well. It’s fun. 😬 Have a beautiful Sunday, everyone! 🌞

It’s Okay to be Serious

img_7608At work I will occasionally find myself deep in thought while I work on some task, whether it’s punching in an order or cutting fruit for sangria. Sometimes I’ll be focusing on what I’m doing, and sometimes my mind will wander to anywhere and everywhere. Eventually, someone will interrupt my concentration with something like, “Are you okay? Why are you so serious?” Sometimes, I even get an “Are you mad?”

This type of question gets asked by coworkers and guests alike and can often be a lot more offensive in nature. Women have gotten this seemingly since time began. An art series by Tatyana Falalizadeh called Stop Telling Women to Smile has gone viral, adding more to the discussion of street harassment.

It’s not just people who harass women on the street who are the problem in this, though. I’m sure my coworkers and (most) guests certainly don’t think of it as harassment, and I’m not sure if I even do. After all, I’m in a customer service position. It’s part of my job to smile.

However, there is some sexism attached to this idea. I never hear anyone asking my male coworkers if they’re “okay” or “mad.” Somewhere along the line, our culture decided women were supposed to be pretty and happy all the time, while men could be as ugly and grumpy as they want. I think this stems from centuries of patriarchy, where women are mostly seen as eye candy–physical objects to be admired for their beauty and discarded for their lack thereof.

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Image via Flickr Creative Commons, courtesy of David Francis.

This seems to be an idea that spans many ages as well. Older grumpy women are considered “witches,” while older grumpy men are endearingly, sometimes lovingly, called, “grumpy old men.” Parents at the restaurant where I work are always prompting their young girls to perk up, while their boys are allowed to brood.

In a way, this is also connected to the patriarchy’s fear of emotion. Expressing anything other than an “okay-ness” in public–especially at work–is embarrassing and unacceptable. Men are expected to be tough and show no emotion, and if women want to run with the boys, they’re held to the same standards–as long as they look good doing it. That’s where the smiling comes in.

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Image via Flickr Creative Commons, courtesy of Tom Hilton.

So what are we to make of this “resting bitch face” phenomenon? What will our response be when people wonder aloud if anything is wrong with us? Will we be embarrassed? Apologetic? Will we immediately plaster a smile on our faces?

I know what my answer is and always will be. “Yeah, I’m okay. Are you?” I will not apologize. I refuse to be embarrassed. I’m not here to look pretty; I’m here to work.

I smile at my guests to make them feel welcome and heard, but if I’m in the middle of something, I will unapologetically screw up my face if it helps me think and do my job better. Being conscious of what my face is doing often distracts from the task at hand. Only spies and actors need to be aware of such things, and I’m neither.

Smile when you feel like it. It’s okay to be serious. Who gives a fuck about resting bitch face?