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How to Not be a People Person in 7 Easy Steps

16 Jul

1) Master the art of maintaining a frown. Smiling is for insecure people who need constant approval and feel the need to ‘connect with others in the same social group.’ Ugh. Noobs.

 

2) Become comfortable with saying no.

For example:

Grab lunch with me and some of the guys from IT?

No way, Jose.

 

Drinks after work?

No can do, Stu.

 

Can I pick your brain for a second?

Not now Chief, I’m in the zone.

 

Do you want to go out later and catch a movie?

I’ve seen it already.

 

I’d like you to be the Maid of Honour at my wedding.

Really? That’s so sweet. I didn’t know you felt that close to me.

So you’ll do it?

No.

 3) If you ever do find yourself in social gatherings, just leave without telling anyone where you’re going or whether you’re coming back. (You’re not).

4) Be brutally honest, all the time, without concern for other’s feelings.

5) Get a DO NOT DISTURB sign and consider getting said sign tattooed somewhere on your body.

6) Constantly have headphones in, even if they’re not connecting to anything.

7) Use few words. Avoid adjectives, interjections, and contractions. Do not make small talk.

 

 

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Froyo

7 Jun

I had a dream I was in a park eating frozen yogurt. I put my froyo down for a second when it was nabbed by a stranger. I then pursued the perp on foot and was close to catching him right before he hopped on a kids bike. I felt that all would be lost in a dark moment of grief. I then found my inner strength. I picked up a rock, took a deep breath, and threw that rock directly into the spokes of the wheels of the bike, causing the thief to catapult off of the bike. Of course my froyo landed softly on the padded grass.

Morale of the story: never leave your frozen yogurt unattended, there are sickos out there.

Hamlet was My Lover

19 Feb

I have a confession to make.

I don’t read. I know a good writer reads, but I just don’t think I have the attention span for it: I get distracted by other people’s conversations in the coffee shop or I start thinking about what my next blog post should be about.

I have another confession to make.

In high school and university I never completed an assigned book. I thank my stellar inductive skills for helping me piece together information from what I read, what I overheard classmates say, and what the instructor’s blatantly told us in class. This allowed me to B.S. my way through class discussions and write amazing papers on the topics. And I got As. Commence the tomato throwing and booing.

Image

Logic.

I guess I’m the single woman in the world of books who doesn’t know what she is looking for, sets her expectations too high, is afraid of being of being hurt at the end, or is just afraid of commitment. Probably all of the above.

The truth is, I was hurt, very badly. I fell in love with a man named Hamlet, and although we didn’t share the same century, our bond was deep and true. We didn’t speak the same language, but I understood him. And like all true heartbreaking stories, he didn’t even know I existed.

For those of you who don’t know, Hamlet by William Shakespeare is a tragic play about a prince, Hamlet, whose father is killed. The ghost of Hamlet’s father haunts him and demands that he seek revenge and murder his uncle (who is now married to Hamlet’s mother, gross, I know) who was responsible for his death. But here’s the kicker: we don’t know if Hamlet is insane or not. Is he so devastated by the circumstances of his father’s death that he’s making up ghosts? Or is he really that special that a ghost would reach out to him to for vengeance? Is Hamlet bat-shit crazy or a actually the hero of this story?

Now, you’re probably not seeing the appeal of Hamlet, so let me establish some context. When I ‘read’ Hamlet, I was 16 or 17. I was at a point in my life where I thought I was so important and awesome, yet at the same time I was kind of a loser. It was like a weird metaphysical paradox I was living in (this is distinctive from the adult version of myself where I am actually fully aware that I’m not that important).

Plus, Hamlet had no idea what was going on in his life and was completely incapable of following through with what he told himself he would do: kill his uncle-father. In other words, Hamlet was a hot-mess who was also a big-time procrastinator.

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That should have been me.

So I could see myself in Hamlet. And lord’a mercy, did I love him for that.

Hamlet’s inner struggles and inability to act on things that consumed his thoughts mirrored mine, and still do to this day.

Write your essay!

Go to yoga!

Book a flight to France!

Move out!

Get your life together!

Have you ever wanted something so badly but just couldn’t for the life of you get off your ass and do it? Not that you were lazy, but because you over analyzed and thought the damn thing to death? Hamlet is the poster boy for that!

When I first got into the one-sided relationship with Hamlet, I knew it was a tragedy and I knew how it would end (SPOILER ALERT! He dies). But still, he was one of the first things I ever committed to. We would have been great together. We could have been all deep and contemplative about life. We could have been self-destructive together.  He would have made me feel less shitty about not filing my taxes and getting my eyebrows done. We could have made excuses for each other. We could have had beautiful, ill-raised and insecure children.

In all seriousness, Hamlet is one of the best works of art that I almost-read. If there’s anything you can take from Shakespeare’s classic, it’s how not to live your life. There’s only so long you can pretend you’re asleep or hide out in Starbucks. You need to go out there and get what you want!

So don’t be Hamlet. Don’t live and die tragically.

I love Drake

20 Jan

 

The end.

Happy One-Year Blogiversary to me.

25 Oct

Let’s celebrate!

(BYOB)

An interview with Saaqshi Sharma – by Saaqshi Sharma

25 May

Why do you write? Were you always a writer?

I’ve always wanted to be a writer and I’ve always enjoyed editing, revising, and sharing information.

Not too long ago I signed up for a memoir-writing workshop because I was free Monday afternoons and it was only $20. I was only in my twenties and the class was full of retirees, so you could say I was a little intimidated by the years of experience (in life and in writing) my classmates had on me. At the end of the 4-week workshop we had to share a ‘Show and Tell’ piece, and I wrote about instant noodles because I didn’t have any souvenirs from Bali or guns from the war I never fought in. So I brought in a package of Mr. Noodles instant noodles and told everyone what they meant to me. They loved it and my piece ended up getting short-listed for a contest. Because of that experience, I accepted that I am a writer.

And health sciences-where did it come from?  Why is it in your life?

I think health science is in my life because I love biology and studying life. As a health scientist I understand the ‘why’ of life, and understand what goes wrong from a rational point of view. As a writer I understand the impact of life from an emotional point of view and see ‘the bigger picture’ of our experiences. I suppose it’s a way for me to balance the practical and measurable with the abstract. Both are important to our existence.

What are you afraid of?

I’ll kill a spider with my bare hands and go bungee jumping, but I lose control of my limbs and bladder when I see a mouse. Like all good fears, it makes little sense.

Your writing is very sarcastic and laced with humour. Can’t you be serious?

I am very serious; I just don’t choose to show that side to my readers. This blog is just a contract with myself to write regularly. People who know me personally know I am very serious and take myself very seriously. I also write a lot of dark material that I don’t broadcast here because I feel like it’s too revealing of my psyche, and that’s scary to me. So I protect myself with humour. Penis.

Oh so you’re a funny guy. Can you tell me a joke?

That’s what she said. Oh, wait, let me start again.

What are your goals in life?

To be able to do a man-pushup (check), chin up, and cartwheel. To be fluent in French and Spanish. And publish a book that isn’t self-published. And just be a boss in my career and everyday life.

Like a baws!

What’s your favourite book?

I Know This Much is True by Wally Lamb.

What’s your favorite song?

You’re All I Need by Method Man featuring Mary J. Blige. I love hip hop because of this song. I want this to be the first dance at my wedding. Like a boss.

What movie could you watch over and over again?

Tropic Thunder. I mean, it’s black RDJ!

I know who I am! I’m the dude playing the dude disguised as another dude!

I know who I am! I’m the dude playing the dude disguised as another dude!

How would you describe the colour blue to a blind person?

What the hell kind of question is that?

You’re right, sorry. What was your proudest moment?

I don’t have a lot of those because I’m really hard on myself. I don’t know, maybe that I didn’t cry during my Master’s defence? Every time I get published I feel pretty good about myself.

What’s the nicest thing anyone has ever said to you?

That I’m a good writer.

What’s the meanest thing anyone has ever said to you?

“Saaqshi, I feel like we’re close enough friends now that I can tell you that I don’t really care about your life”.

What do you like to do for fun?

Drink. Don’t worry, I’m classy, I drink wine. Dance, watch movies, hang out with friends, read, try something physically challenging like surfing or rock climbing that I’m probably going to suck at. Because, you know, it’s important to fail at things sometimes.

Who are your celebrity crushes right now?

Jenson Ackles and Jared Padalecki from Supernatural; The Shield from WWE; Jimmy Fallon from Late Night with Jimmy Fallon; and Batman from Gotham City.

So sexy

So sexy

What’s one thing you would change about yourself?

My sex addiction.

Oh really. Wanna come to my place later?

Okay.

I think we’re done here, thanks for your time.

That’s what she said.

I f*%$ing love to swear

17 Nov

Note: If you are offended by profanity, do not read on. If you are my mother or a recruiter scoping me out for employment, please exit your browser and walk away. Just walk away.

There was a time in my life when I despised swearing. It was a sad time. I was a teenager and I used to surround myself with adolescent boys who implanted swears after very other word. They would use their curses as a verb, noun, adjective and even an adverb. I didn’t like it. It took too much energy to decipher what they were saying and when I did manage to decode their cryptic messages, they were simple and the cussing just wasn’t necessary.

“I f*%$ing hate this f*%$ing s*%-faced math class.”

Okay, so you’re not a fan of algebra. You just used 44% more words than you needed to and you didn’t at all change the impact of your message.

Call me a pretentious stickler for vocabulary, but I just didn’t think ‘f*%$’ was that useful of a word. And it was so overused outside the boys’ locker room (don’t worry about why I was hanging outside the boys’ locker room). Even worse were the girls who swore. The nastiest, most vulgar material can come out of a teenage girl who’s listened to too much Ludacris. It was definitely creative, but it just wasn’t very lady-like.

I went on as the Anti-Profanity Authority, shunning no-good-sayers with my looks of disapproval and curt wags of my finger. I was on a mission to cleanse the mouths of delinquents everywhere. And then my life changed forever in a university linguistics class, of all places.

The professor swore. The linguistics f*%$ing professor f*%$ng swore! A person of power and great intelligence swore in front of her students! What kind of a horrible role model would do that? Everything I thought about the conventions of swearing had been shattered with the drop of that F-bomb. And she did it with such nonchalance. While the 200 of us gasped and held our breath, waiting for her next vulgar expulsion, she simply continued writing her lesson on the board. She turned around to our wide eyes and pale faces.

“What? Swearing is a great way to let off some steam. See, I snapped off a piece of chalk.” She held up the nub for us to see and we leaned in, intrigued.

“I got upset, I swore, I got over it. No harm, no foul. If you’re slighted by this, I suggest you leave now because I’m not going to get any more grey hairs by filtering myself.”

Of course! It made perfect sense! I exhaled, nodding in agreement to her explanation. And then the class burst into joyous laughter. We were liberated. Fuck yeah!

After opening my mind to the idea of swearing, I realized that I was thinking about it all wrong. It can be not only a fun addition to anecdotes, but it also has the potential to express some true and deep emotions, unrivaled by the use of any non-offensive synonyms.

For example:

“I just don’t understand what would possess you to do such an idiotic fucking thing!” (Expressing great disappointment in your lack of judgment)

“Ahhhh! I won the fucking lottery!” (Note that the use of a curse word highlights the rarity of this occasion and therefore importance of such an occurrence)

“Fuuuuuuuuuuck! I just stubbed my toe!” (Elongation of the vowels with the head tilted back is particularly useful in releasing stress/pain)

“Hell yeah, fucking right!” (I just like that song)

As you can see, the use of a simple cuss word really spices up your communication and adds a little flair to your message. It really helps you take a bite out of the ass of life.

I learned the valuable lesson of just letting go, that day. Yes, that does require the odd sacrifice of not spending a lot of time around children (especially outside a place of worship) but in the end, I think it’s worth it. By allowing myself to indulge in the occasional* cursing rant, I have prevented horrific acts of road rage, reduced my risk for heart disease, and have found a new appreciation for rap music. My apologies to all the Ludacris fans I looked down on in my naïve youth. Man is a genius.

*occasional is a relative term