Day 27 – Search Terms
I love having a blog for many reasons. It helps me process feelings, remember things, talk about cool places to travel, and pouring out all my thoughts in written form probably keeps me from talking absolutely all the time (probably but not exactly).
I’ve had this blog for seven or eight years I think, and one of the funnest features is the “search terms” section that tells you things that people googled to arrive on my site. This whole “blogging every day for a month” thing hasn’t been easy in some respects, because you’re constantly thinking of what you can write about that might be interesting, so for this post, I thought I’d look at what the weirdest search terms were for last year to get some inspiration. Because I’m just trying to give the people what they want. I did my calculations, and read through them all, thinking I’d find a muse among the google machine parts.
Instead, I nearly peed my pants laughing.
Drumroll please . . . for the weirdest search terms people use to find my blog . . .
- What is a pirate’s favorite animal? (in case you want to know, it’s an Arrrrrmadillo or aarrrrrdvark)
- What is a pirate’s favorite herb?? (in case you want to know, it’s Cheddarrr)
- Football butts (well. I guess I have discussed those in detail)
- Is it weird that I find Simba attractive? (I hope not, sister)
- Should you put diving certification on your resume? (I haven’t, but I did think about it)
- Peeing (yes, I do talk about that a lot)
- What does “cigar aficionado” on a dating site mean? (google it)
- How to win a girl in 10 days (I have addressed that in detail, should update it)
- Can you pee in your wetsuit? (NO. LEARN FROM MY MISTAKES.)
- Brian Wilson chest tattoo (in the name of the father, in Latin, for his dad, who passed away)
- Is Channing Tatum cross-eyed? (yes, adorably so)
- Moonshiners (are my people)
- Whats that scary fish in “finding nemo” (something I never want to see in person)
- Is ‘vacation withdrawal syndrome’ real? (I suffer the effects often)
- Teacup hedgehog (I know, right?)
If you haven’t seen my pirate joke collection, it is massive, and it is here. I one day dream of making a children’s coloring book full of these jokes.
March 10 – Day 28 – 40 by 40
I’m almost done with this challenge, and when I have completed it, I will be one step closer to finishing my list of 35 things to accomplish before my 35th birthday.
I’m looking at the list now, and fully aware that there are some things I just won’t be able to do. For example, will I be able to publish my book? Probably not. Will I be able to go a month without eating in a restaurant? Um, definitely not now that I’ve moved to the foodiest capital of the world, Hong Kong. There is just too much goods to eat here.
I’m concerned I won’t be able to make a cake or pie from scratch, which I can’t believe has been sitting on my list for five years. But it just goes to show you that goals can seem easy and achievable, but life still happens. So the lesson is in what we do when/if we don’t achieve them.
Ignoring for the moment the goals I might not accomplish, I can think about the ones that I have. When I wrote this list five years ago, it was a silly knee-jerk reaction to something my friend Seghs and I had talked about, which was having an “anti-bucket list.” I actually wrote an article about it for the Huffington Post, and got some crazy hate mail about it, particularly over the part where I said I would never donate blood. I realize this makes me sound like a jerk, until you read further and understand that I have a paralyzing fear of needles. I turn into nightmare around a needle, and make the lives of those trying to extract my blood a living hell because I am hyperventilating, screaming, pacing, fainting, etc., not necessarily in that order. So I have learned that as noble as I want to be, it’s just not worth it. My fear is too deep and the trouble it causes others makes it not worth it. When I publicized that, people emailed me and said they hoped someone I loved got an incurable disease. So. YAyyyyy internet.
Even if at the end of these five years, I look at this list and there are a lot of things I haven’t been able to do, I will still be proud as I move forward towards my 40xforty list oh my god. I’m going to be 40. SOMEDAY.
So what are my ideas for that list? There are dreams percolating. But nothing permanent. What are your ideas? What should I hope for by forty years old?
If I’m honest, if I look deep into my heartest of hearts, the one thing I really want, I am scared to say out loud. I am scared if I say it, the universe will laugh and say no. So I will whisper it as I write it – but the one thing I want is my person. I want him and I want our life together. And I want our kids. A warm body next to me at night. Someone who thinks I’m great and tells me so. Eyes to meet across a room in love and in mutual eye roll and in silent understanding and “hey, you YOU doin.”
Everything else I’d like to happen could and it would be great – I want to keep traveling, to pay off college debt, I want to see the northern lights, and host a Christmas or New Years Eve dinner. I want to know how to properly barbecue hamburgers. There are a few friends around the world I am promising myself I will see. Hikes to hike. Foods to eat. A hot air balloon. But I want someone to share these moments with in a more than friendly way.
We shall see. We shall see. Definitely going to add “get a pet fish” to the list though. Let’s see if my flatmate notices.
March 11 – Day 29 the date
This has been the year of the first dates for some reason – some harvested through hours of the online dating world, and some just by meeting randomly. I was really excited about my last firstdate, which I blogged about here. Unfortunately, even though it was lovely to finally meet in person and we had a great night together, I knew it wasn’t going to work out. We didn’t have the chemistry I wanted and had been expecting, since we’d had such good texting banter going on. There were also bigger, life in general kind of things that I knew wouldn’t allow us to truly be happy together long term.
This man could have not been more respectful, more kind, after I texted saying it just wasn’t going to be. And man, that is a hard thing to say. Who ever wants to be the a-hole that says “hey, guess what, mate? Prefer to not ever see you again.”
But I had to say something along those lines, and he was so amazing about it that it nearly made me change my mind, but that just wouldn’t be fair.
So here we are, back at square one. Where we’ve basically been for a few years now.
As I mentioned, I gave up online dating for Lent, which I’m hoping somehow reverse psychologies the universe into sending me some handsome bearded former professional baseball player named Brian Wilson into my orbit to be my plus one to events.
It’s pretty incredible the change that there’s been in my headspace just by deleting the apps. By not getting notifications, by not just clicking and scrolling and swiping whenever I got bored, it’s been something that’s faded from my mind. It doesn’t mean I haven’t stopped occasionally obsessing about getting older and still being single, or sizing up each guy I pass on the street, or dressing up and getting cute and wondering if anyone will notice. And it doesn’t mean I won’t be back on there in a few months, but for now, the extra headspace and not stressing over someone liking me back or texting me back is nice. I will date more books.
March 12 – Day 30 – what i’ve learned from this
We have reached the end! Actually, I’m finishing this a week something later, as I just got busy. I’m happy that I’ll get to cross something off my list of things I wanted to accomplish, right at the midnight hour. And it’s been a learning experience in a few ways. I learned I could discipline myself to do something, if I really wanted to. If I really want to, I can find the time. I stuck with my new gym and I can feel myself growing stronger, lifting heavier weights and going harder at things that seemed impossible just four or five weeks ago.
I learned that it’s important for me to write as much as I can, so I can remember and learn and also to share. I’ve had a lot of people reach out and message about certain things I’ve written, mostly about depression and being an expat. It’s opened up all kinds of conversations with people, some I haven’t spoken to in years – since high school even! It’s a good reminder that you just never know what people are going through, to never assume that you have someone figured out.
I’ve always wanted to be a writer, ever since I was a little kid. They say it takes 10,000 hours of doing something to make you an expert, and I know this helped put me on my way. This blogging for a month straight put me 14,000 words closer to that expertise.
Making myself write each day made me realize the different shades of richness I have in my life. Sitting down and wondering what to say, I would think about my day, or what was coming up that got me excited or worried. I can look back now and see more clearly what I love, what brings me joy, what my deep fears are. Hopefully now, as I get back into some counseling and try to take better care of myself to manage certain emotions, I’ll be better prepared.
So this exercise will go on my next list of things to do, and I recommend it to anyone who is trying to figure things out. I picked Feb-March because I was running out of time and needed to get it done, but also I considered this to be a not very busy part of the year. I thought it would be super easy. Turns out no, life is always busy, there is always something you should be doing (and I often did this instead!). There’s never actually a perfect time to do anything, and if we just wait and wait for it, we’ll never get started. So if you really want something, go get it. It can be yours.
Within reason. I want a unicorn and to be taller, but.
Thanks for reading.
Please send unicorns.