Monday, September 17, 2012

"Flying Warrior," I am least not yet

Yoga is wonderful.

Yoga makes me FEEL wonderful. I showed up to class today completely sore and bent out of shape from a recent run, and I felt feeling deliciously stretched out like silly putty.

But I must say, even better than yoga is yoga with a friend. That way, you have someone to make faces at during your 18 millionth downward dog.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Where's the "Any Key"?

Dude, I'm right here.
Not long ago, my little 4th grade sister was using my laptop to type an email. Knowing better than to leave a fancy new lappy with an eight-year old, I checked on her after a few minutes.

After the initial relief that she wasn’t deleting everything on my desktop or creating a MySpace page for her pet mealworm, I noticed that my sister was chicken-pecking away at the keyboard with the index fingers of each hand. I told her it might be a good idea to practice “big-kid” typing, as she’s getting a little old to be only using two fingers. I moved her hands so that all her fingers were lined up on the “home row.” My sister stared at me, blankly. “I don’t know how to do this,” she said. “Aren’t you learning how to type in school?” I asked her. She said no. Finding this very hard to believe, I went to my stepmother, who confirmed my fears: Typing has been removed from the elementary school curriculum.

In the 1950s, amid restrictive gender expectations and limiting educational values, a dumb girl with nothing to her credit but a blonde head of hair and large mammary glands could secure a respectable job if she knew how to type. The sexy secretary stereotype is derided and frowned upon today, but hey, at least she had a job to pay for her rent and her Vivier stilettos. Now that this vital skill has been removed from the school curriculum, what are those girls going to do? I hope today’s little boys grow up to be wealthy, successful, and in want of wives—once these empty-headed  beauties find themselves barred from one of their only available career paths, rich husbands are going to be in greater demand than ever! (Although they’ll have to get rich as professional athletes—they won’t get through university, because they don’t know how to type either.)

Apparently, the reasoning behind the discontinuation of typing class is that kids are so into technology and communication these days, typing isn’t something they need to be taught anymore.

I’m sorry. Did I miss something?

The powers that be in this case do have a point. Today’s youth are growing up in a society that revolves around texting, instant messaging, technological communication and online networking. What I fail to understand is how ceasing to teach children the most basic skill to surviving in this environment is doing them a favour. As a young adult, I can thrive in this setting because, having mastered the basics at an early age, I have been able to adapt to new methods of communication as they evolved around me.

What children are expected to accomplish with no tools and no training these days confounds me. My sister has told me numerous times of the many PowerPoint presentations she is required to put together for class, and yet none of these children have been taught how to type. With technology permeating their world faster than flatulence in a crowded elevator, the ability to type should be seen as crucial, not unimportant and disposable. I doubt that your PowerPoint will wow the bosses at your next board meeting when the company’s name has been spelled wrong and the text took weeks to cobble together. 

These children are being thrust into a fast-paced, technological world with little to no preparation. “Text speak”, for example, has, for better or for worse, developed into a dominant aspect of youth culture. Having learned to type, we eliminate vowels and reform words to create a shorthand with which we identify. Younger children—already exposed to this fad everyday—are missing out on that key first step, the practical foundation that will set them up for understanding the nuances behind modern communication. Running before you walk, knowing the rules before you can break them...these clichés exist because at the heart of them lies a grain of wisdom—wisdom that is apparently lacking in certain elementary schools.

What scares me the most is not the idea of a rising generation of computer-illiterate youngsters, or even the knowledge that my little sister has never felt the thrill of watching a pixilated kangaroo hop across the screen with every word  she types correctly (“All the Right Type” FTW!). Nay, the scariest thing here is that some board of educators somewhere—people whose job it is to decide what’s right for our children—honestly believe that this is a good idea. But what do I know? I’m just a youngster myself, without any fancy-pants degree in child education. All I know is that whereas I took swimming lessons as a kid with water noodles that I hung onto as I kicked around and blew bubbles, apparently the new method is to chuck the kid into the deep end of the pool and say, “Meh, I’m sure they’ll figure it out.” For the love of God, I hope there’s a lifeguard on duty.

Are children taught to type in schools in your area, or is this skill left to the parents where you are, too? Do you think it's a step forward or a step back to remove it from schools?

Saturday, April 2, 2011

100 Books (But Actually More Like 155)

The BBC has compiled a list of 100 must-read books. I haven't seen anything official on this, but the word on the street is that they are assuming the average person has only read six of them. 

The list does not seem to be the same as the BBC's The Big Read, a list of the supposedly 100 best-loved books in England. I yet to see anything official for this list - only Facebook and blog posts so far. 

The books I have read in their entirety have a þ beside them, and books I've read parts of, but not finished, are in italics

1. Pride and Prejudice - Jane Austen     þ 
2. The Lord of the Rings - JRR Tolkien (I've only read one)
3. Jane Eyre - Charlotte Bronte 
4. Harry Potter series - JK Rowling     
5. To Kill a Mockingbird - Harper Lee     þ      
6. The Bible
7. Wuthering Heights - Emily Bronte     
8. Nineteen Eighty Four - George Orwell     þ       
9. His Dark Materials - Philip Pullman     þ 
10. Great Expectations - Charles Dickens  
11. Little Women - Louisa M Alcott 
12. Tess of the D’Urbervilles - Thomas Hardy  
13. Catch 22 - Joseph Heller     þ
14. Complete Works of Shakespeare 
15. Rebecca - Daphne Du Maurier 
16. The Hobbit - JRR Tolkien
17. Birdsong - Sebastian Faulks 
18. Catcher in the Rye - JD Salinger     
19. The Time Traveller’s Wife - Audrey Niffenegger
20. Middlemarch - George Eliot 
21. Gone With The Wind - Margaret Mitchell 
22. The Great Gatsby - F Scott Fitzgerald     
23. Bleak House - Charles Dickens 
24. War and Peace - Leo Tolstoy
25. The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy - Douglas Adams     þ
26. Brideshead Revisited - Evelyn Waugh 
27. Crime and Punishment - Fyodor Dostoyevsky     
28. Grapes of Wrath - John Steinbeck     þ
29. Alice in Wonderland - Lewis Carroll
30. The Wind in the Willows - Kenneth Grahame  
31. Anna Karenina - Leo Tolstoy 
32. David Copperfield - Charles Dickens  
33. Chronicles of Narnia - CS Lewis     
34. Emma - Jane Austen     þ
35. Persuasion - Jane Austen     
36. The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe - CS Lewis     þ 
37. The Kite Runner - Khaled Hosseini
38. Captain Corelli’s Mandolin - Louis De Bernieres 
39. Memoirs of a Geisha - Arthur Golden 
40. Winnie the Pooh - AA Milne
41. Animal Farm - George Orwell 
42. The Da Vinci Code - Dan Brown
43. One Hundred Years of Solitude - Gabriel Garcia Marquez 
44. A Prayer for Owen Meany - John Irving 
45. The Woman in White - Wilkie Collins 
46. Anne of Green Gables - LM Montgomery  
47. Far From The Madding Crowd - Thomas Hardy  
48. The Handmaid’s Tale - Margaret Atwood 
49. Lord of the Flies - William Golding     
50. Atonement - Ian McEwan     þ 
51. Life of Pi - Yann Martel     þ
52. Dune - Frank Herbert 
53. Cold Comfort Farm - Stella Gibbons 
54. Sense and Sensibility - Jane Austen     
55. A Suitable Boy - Vikram Seth 
56. The Shadow of the Wind - Carlos Ruiz Zifon 
57. A Tale Of Two Cities - Charles Dickens 
58. Brave New World - Aldous Huxley     
59. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time - Mark Haddon
60. Love In The Time Of Cholera - Gabriel Garcia Marquez 
61. Of Mice and Men - John Steinbeck     
62. Lolita - Vladimir Nabokov 
63. The Secret History - Donna Tartt  
64. The Lovely Bones - Alice Sebold
65. Count of Monte Cristo - Alexandre Dumas 
66. On The Road - Jack Kerouac 
67. Jude the Obscure - Thomas Hardy  
68. Bridget Jones’s Diary - Helen Fielding
69. Midnight’s Children - Salman Rushdie 
70. Moby Dick - Herman Melville 
71.Oliver Twist - Charles Dickens 
72. Dracula - Bram Stoker     
73. The Secret Garden - Frances Hodgson Burnett     þ 
74. Notes From A Small Island - Bill Bryson 
75. Ulysses - James Joyce 
76. The Inferno - Dante
77. Swallows and Amazons - Arthur Ransome 
78. Germinal - Emile Zola
79. Vanity Fair - William Makepeace Thackeray     
80. Possession - AS Byatt 
81. A Christmas Carol - Charles Dickens 
82. Cloud Atlas - David Mitchell 
83. The Color Purple - Alice Walker 
84. The Remains of the Day - Kazuo Ishiguro  
85. Madame Bovary - Gustave Flaubert     
86. A Fine Balance - Rohinton Mistry 
87. Charlotte’s Web - EB White
88. The Five People You Meet In Heaven - Mitch Albom
89. Adventures of Sherlock Holmes - Sir Arthur Conan Doyle 
90. The Faraway Tree Collection - Enid Blyton
91. Heart of Darkness - Joseph Conrad 
92.The Little Prince - Antoine De Saint-Exupery     
93. The Wasp Factory - Iain Banks 
94. Watership Down - Richard Adams  
95. A Confederacy of Dunces - John Kennedy Toole 
96. A Town Like Alice - Nevil Shute 
97. The Three Musketeers - Alexandre Dumas  
98. Hamlet - William Shakespeare     
99. Charlie and the Chocolate Factoy - Roald Dahl     þ
100. Les Miserables - Victor Hugo 

I have some issues with the list which make me question its legitimacy. 

For instance, I don't find it consistent that some items include entire series, such as His Dark Materials, Harry Potter, The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, and The Complete Works of William Shakespeare, but then some authors, like Jane Austen and Charles Dickens, have numerous works listed as separate items. 

Also, The Chronicles of Narnia, a series of seven books, is listed at #33, but then The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe, the second in the Narnia series, is listed on its own at #36. The same happens with Shakespeare's Hamlet. 

The BBC has such a skewed sense of what constitutes a single book, however, for now, 31/100 (or 52/155) doesn't seem too shabby.

Which of the 100 have you read? Have you read more than six?

Kansas City Public Library

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Tiny Little Mouth, Great Big Heart

Dear Blogging Universe,

I'd like you to meet someone.

This is Clomps.

Clomps is a pastel, polka-dotted parasaurolophus, and he is my friend.

We met one summer in a Hallmark store, where I saw him sitting on a shelf. He was little. He was pastel. He was polka-dotted. He was the single most unnecessary and ridiculous thing I had ever seen in my life. I promptly carried him over to the counter, forked over my cash, and took him home. Our fates were to be forever joined from that point on.

I thought Clomps would make the perfect present for a friend of mine who was returning home from a summer trip. Before I gave him to her, I showed one of my male friends a picture of the silly toy I had bought. We agreed it was absolutely ridiculous. The girl liked it, but I kept thinking about the dinosaur long after I had given him away. He was so little and cute and silly. I had grown rather fond of him.

Shortly after, my guy friend was dumped by a girl he had been seeing and was taking it hard. I knew there was only one thing that would be guaranteed to make him smile. Back I went to the Hallmark store to buy another parasaurolophus. As I started to carry the toy away, I noticed there was now only one of them left sitting on the shelf. All alone.

Before I carry on, I’d like to know what any of you would have done in that situation? Gone on with your day? Eliminated the image of a lonely little dinosaur, already millions of years away from any time period he can call home, and now, all that remained of his poor extinct family was gone? Because of ME? I did what any human being with a soul would do. I bought both dinosaurs: one for my friend, and one for myself.

At first I was worried that my macho male friend would be less than pleased at being presented with this miniscule, plushy, polka-dotted thing in public, but to my delight, he was immediately enamoured! He named his parasaurolophus Esophagus. Why? sounds a little bit the same. And it’s definitely unique!

Roughly three months later, my male friend became the person I have previously referred to on this blog as Boyfriend. When he transferred to a university in another city, our two matching dinosaurs became links between us that helped the distance not feel as far. Clomps is never anything other than adorable and squishable; if I feel sad, I look at his silly little face with his ridiculously tiny smile, and it’s impossible to stay sad for long. I hug my dinosaur, and it feels like somehow it will get passed on to Boyfriend if he hugs his, too.

Over time, Boyfriend and I have developed very specific personalities for our little buddies. They like to eat snacks, sleep, and get into mischief – basically everything two hectic university students never have the time to do. They say rawr a lot, and if you want to carry them around, they will only agree to riding on your shoulder or your head. Needless to say, they do this a lot. 

Boyfriend has mastered the art of double parasaurolophus transportation.
Clomps and Esophagus are best friends, so Boyfriend and I have to visit each other lots so the two of them can see each other.  

In a nice rawrm blankie!

I don’t care if people think it’s crazy how much Boyfriend and I have turned these inanimate objects into veritable friends. The more I do with them, the more I come to believe that it’s not such a crazy thing at all. I have been astounded at how many of the people I know grow instantly attached to Clomps and Esophagus once they get to know them, as if they were people, or at the very least, pets.

Boyfriend and I are part of a youth organization that meets for weekends every couple of months. We bring the dinosaurs to every event, and our friends pay almost more attention to Clomps and Esophagus than they do to us. The group’s leader has declared them honorary members, and my friend Joey dressed Clomps up in a suit so that he could participate. I’m not kidding.

It was awesome.
Boyfriend started a Twitter account for Esophagus, and Esophagus now has more followers than Boyfriend does. Marley, over at thats so high school has expressed a desire for Clomps to be her prom date. Tiffany of Tiff's Tome was preparing for her program entrance exam and was nervous, so Boyfriend told me to lend her Clomps for support. I showed up at her place with Clomps, wearing a sign around his neck that said, “Rawr Tiffrawrny!” She was ecstatic and convinced me to let Clomps stay with her for a sleepover. She spent the rest of the evening taking pictures of their activities, even adjusting her bathroom to better accommodate his needs. 

I'll admit it, I missed him tremendously while he was away.

He missed me, too.

A girl in one of my classes saw Clomps in my bag and started talking to me for the first time on the bus – even though we had been riding the same bus all year. I’m convinced it was Clomps that convinced her I was cool.

People say you should love people instead of things, because a thing can’t love you back. These people have never had a parasaurolophus, of that I am sure. If people are allowed to love animals, then I don’t see why I can’t be allowed to love a soft, little, pastel creature who sits quietly on my desk and is always available for a soft, squishy hug.

I was going to end this post with a sentimental reflection on how Clomps and Esophagus are something like proxies for Boyfriend and I, giving each other love and comfort when we are apart. However, I never realized until today just how much Clomps could symbolize me and my relationships.

The friend who I had initially bought the first Clomps for after her summer trip was amused with him, but that was all. I’m pretty sure she has since lost the toy. She has also very recently revealed to me that our friendship is no longer what I thought it was, and that she is moving on with her life and away from our friendship, which is no longer as useful to her as it once was.

Boyfriend, who was enraptured with Esophagus in the early days of our friendship, I can confidently say is also enraptured with me. He accepts my weirdness in a way I haven’t experienced with anyone else, and my relationship with him has proven impossible to overvalue.

These dinosaurs entered my life back when I had two good friends. One was indifferent to it, and later grew indifferent to me. The other accepted it with love, as he has done with me.

For me, Clomps represents everyone who loves him, and their fondness for him is fondness for me and all of my eccentricities. When I hug Clomps, I am hugging my friends, and am comforted by their soft, warm affection. In this way, when I’m with Clomps, I never feel alone. Isn’t that what a real friend is for? 

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Next Valentine's Day, Give Your Loved One Chlamydia!

“I’m not against Valentine’s Day, but I’m so over the clichés. I want a gift that’s different. I want to do something original.”

This is a very understandable and not altogether unreasonable sentiment that I hear a lot among my friends leading up to Valentine's Day. Making Valentine’s Day fun and personal is a really great idea, but there's a lot of pressure surrounding exactly how the heck to do it. For a holiday stigmatized for its superficial and commercial nature, it’s not easy to think of a way to celebrate it that's fun, sweet, interesting and unexpected.

Dear readers, I would like to introduce you to Giant Microbes, by Drew Oliver. Giant Microbes Inc. produces close to 90 different critters, creatures, and diseases, adorably enlarged into cuddly plush-form. These make absolutely perfect gifts, especially if your honey is of the nerdy variety.

My first encounter with Giant Microbes was when my best friend returned from a trip and showed up on my doorstep with this:
I named him Fighty Whitey

It’s a leukocyte, or white blood cell. I like to think she bought it because, as her best friend, I defend her from all the evils of the world and keep her safe and protected. She says she bought it because it looks like me.
I don't see the resemblance.

These guys have everything, from sore throat to the black death, and they come in a variety of sizes from truly gigantic plushies to a teeny tiny collection of three in a Petri dish.
Instead of one STD, why not
give five at once?
If you want to give your sweetheart a cuddly stuffed toy, skip the teddy bear this year. If he or she has a sense of humour, give them a soft, friendly Chlamydia or Syphilis Giant Microbe, and you are guaranteed to get a laugh! Perfect for Valentine’s Day, Giant Microbes even offers a cute little collection called “Heart Burned”—five little venereal diseases in a heartshaped box!

The venereal diseases would be hilarious as a gift, but if they seem too much for you, you can do what I did. I wanted a Giant Microbe for Boyfriend’s birthday, but I thought that the STDS were a little risqué for that early in our relationship. I bought this cutie-patootie instead—Mononucleosis, the Kissing Disease! How funny would it be to say I gave him mono for his birthday! I wasn’t sure how thrilled he’d be with a purple fluffy ball with eyelashes, but to my delight, he loved it and gave her the very fitting and creative name of Cleo.
Happy birthday! You have Mono!
I don't mean to turn my blog into some kind of advertising campaign, but I am seriously hooked on these little dudes, and I feel that I need to get the word out there about them as a creative, adorable, and delightfully inexpensive gift idea. Cold or Flu for children sick in bed, Bad Breath and Diarrhea to tease friends, Mad Cow and Swine Flu for paranoid relatives—there’s really something for everyone!

Next Valentine’s Day, add something different to the mix of teddies and heart candies—or skip  them entirely—and give your special someone Chlamydia! Your gift’s hilarity and originality will be rewarded with a truly contagious smile you won’t want to miss.
Herpes: Incurably cute

Sunday, February 6, 2011

10 Positives of Long Distance Dating--that's right, there are positives!

Long distance relationships (or LDRs, as they seem to be known on the internet) have a bad rap. I’ve heard people say that they never work, that they aren’t worth it, that the physical aspects of dating are too important to compromise, and even that they just plain suck. It’s true that LDRs are challenging and require patience and work to keep them healthy and strong, but show me a relationship (or any worthwhile aspect of life) that doesn’t. When you miss someone, it’s easy to zero in on all of the negatives of your situation (i.e. So here I am, ready to defend long distance love with some of the positive aspects of dating across the miles.

1)  The Guilt Factor

Back when we first started dating, if my boyfriend (henceforth referred to as Boyfriend) wanted to hang out at my house when my parents weren’t home, they would have given me a look that clearly meant, “Not on your life.” Now, my parents appreciate how limited our time together is during our short and infrequent visits, and feel far too guilty saying no to anything we want to do.

2)  Preservation of Vanity

Firstly, like any hygienic, self-respecting adult, I do take care of myself and take pride in my appearance. Secondly, my relationship with Boyfriend is not one that’s based on looks, and we do not expect each other to be airbrushed supermodels. However, some days I’m running late, and a morning shower just doesn’t happen. Or a giant zit will appear right in the middle of my forehead. Or instead of wearing a nice outfit, I just want to wear old sweatpants and the shirt with a stain on it, goddammit! I’m not going to lie, getting away with these “gross days” and knowing Boyfriend doesn’t have to see it can be very liberating.

 3)  Personal Space

Let’s not kid ourselves—even the best and most comfortable of relationships contain a small amount of pressure to perform for the other. The forced distance removes a certain element of the paranoia that you are under constant scrutiny, more often experienced at the start of a relationship. The forced distance allows for some relaxation and freedom to do your own thing, so to speak. I’m not saying that it’s a relief to be always alone—I entered into the relationship for a reason—but there are silver linings to most clouds. I never wanted to be “that girl” who can’t spend 5 minutes away from her boyfriend without suffering a panic attack, and our time apart allows us to maintain and foster our own independence.

4)  Communication

They're saying more with their eyes than their keyboards.
I am amazed at the lengths to which increasingly advanced technology has allowed long-distance couples to keep in touch. It wasn’t long ago that the only way for two lovers to contact each other was with handwritten letters in the mail. Yesteryears’ sweethearts would envy the way that Boyfriend and I can text each other all through the day, let alone video chat  via webcam when we get home. We are really very lucky, and I am conscious of that. But just because we can keep in touch more easily doesn’t mean that there aren’t any challenges. I’ve heard that only 6% of effective communication is shared through words, and the rest depends on nonverbal cues like body language, facial expression and tone—all of which are lost over IM and text message. Boyfriend and I have had to learn to communicate with words as effectively as we can. Have you ever tried arguing with someone entirely over skype? It’s tricky fish. I’m very proud of the communication skills we’ve developed as a couple, and genuinely feel that distance has made us better at understanding each other.

5)  Variety

Since Boyfriend and I are no longer living in the same end of town and going to the same university, the different paths our lives have taken have opened us up to a wider variety of experiences. We get to share our encounters and adventures with each other, making conversation and life in general very interesting. We’re both learning new things and meeting new people, expanding each other’s realms of experience as we share them with each other.

6)  Beard

Boyfriend once asked me if he could grow a beard, and I said no. Beards are rough and scratchy-feeling. However, if he wants to grow a play-off beard or whatever 260 km away, I really don’t have a problem with that because I can’t feel it.

7)  Appreciation

When you’re far away from the person you love, you spend every day waiting for when you’ll see each other again. You always have something to look forward to. And then, when you are together, you are continuously aware of how special it is. Being together is never something that you take for granted, and you never consider time in each other’s company as anything other than something to be grateful for and appreciate. Every date, even the ones as simple as sitting on a couch and watching TV, is exciting. We’re lucky in that we live near enough to each other that visits are possible, however infrequent. In this way, the relationship is never dull or stagnant, with periods varying between the thrill of seeing each other and the building anticipation until we see each other again. There is a value placed on the other person and on the relationship that I believe many other couples miss out on. That might not sound agreeable for some people, but personally, I’ll choose a distance relationship in which we cherish and appreciate each other over a non-distance relationship in which either party is taken for granted.

8)  Productivity

Before I started dating, I used to rationalize my single status by insisting that I didn’t have time for a relationship. Intimacy with human beings, be they friends, family members, or romantic partners, requires the giving and sharing of time and attention. I am a very busy and (formerly) overachieving student, so with a full-time course load and a part-time job, I was finding it hard enough to see my friends. I couldn’t imagine factoring another whole person into my life monopolizing my precious supply of time. (Go ahead, call me a terrible person.) Luckily, Boyfriend is extraordinarily understanding and also a hardworking person open to the nerdy concept of “homework dates,” so I managed to remain similarly productive in comparison to my previously single self. However, now, if I want to hole myself up at my desk for an entire weekend to get a pile of research papers finished, I don’t have to make up excuses for why I don’t feel like going out. While my social life slides merrily down the slope to Loner Town, I least I can get some other stuff done.

9)  Tuna

It's good, okay?
Boyfriend is ridiculously picky about what kind of food he likes, but the one he hates most of all is tuna fish. He has repeatedly claimed that tuna personally offends him, no matter what I tell him about omega-3 fatty acids, protein, selenium, and vitamin-D. In this way, we are very incompatible, as my very happy childhood that included delicious tuna salad sandwiches and Red Rose tea at my grandma’s house every weekend, and I have since considered the combo one of my very favourite lunches. Once I was eating a tuna wrap, and Boyfriend wouldn’t even let me sit on the couch next to him because of the smell. I had to sit on a couch across the room. And he just barely let me sit beside him again after my sandwich was done. Now that Boyfriend lives 260 km away, I can eat tuna to my heart’s content, and there’s nothing he can do about it!

10)  Romance

This perk was proposed by my older sister, who is a veteran when it comes to long-distance dating. When I was expressing sadness over missing Boyfriend, she told me that LDRs are more romantic. It’s a nice idea to have someone thinking about you from far away. She said that distance couples are more likely to send each other love letters, tokens, and other surprises to remind the other that they are loved and remembered—small perks that often get missed when couples see each other all the time. The image of the star-crossed lovers, kept apart by fate, and longing for each other maintains a certain element of fairytale romance. While I’m not sure how much value I place on this, it’s definitely something to consider.

Although I don’t get to see Boyfriend nearly as much as I’d like, I really can’t complain about our relationship. It doesn’t compromise the other people and commitments in our lives, it’s always fresh and exciting, our relationship never goes underappreciated, and we are never in any shortage of the breaks from each other that every healthy couple needs. Perhaps most importantly, the challenges we work through make us stronger both as individuals and as a couple. If we ever reach a point where we do live in the same city, I hope we don’t forget the things we learned and the relationship we built when we were apart. I am so happy for the relationship that I’m in, distance and all, and I truly believe that we’re better for it. It only takes a few moments of remembering these positive things and thinking about how wonderful Boyfriend is to turn my sadness in missing him into comfort and happiness at what we have.

Who am I kidding? I’m just glad I get my tuna.