themegaloo: (Prufrock- Indecisions)
Paradelle* for Rebirth

Break the walls down piece by piece
Break the walls down piece by piece.
Unbend nails and remove the boards
Unbend nails and remove the boards.
Nails break walls and piece the boards
By the down, unbend. Piece remove.

Barriers of the heart are made of stone
Barriers of the heart are made of stone,
People are the nails, piercing through
People are the nails, piercing through.
The people are made barriers of nails through the
Stone of the heart are piercing.

Deconstruct it all to atoms and molecules
Deconstruct it all to atoms and molecules
To create a new heart, breathing and open
To create a new heart, breathing and open.
Atoms to deconstruct molecules open a heart and
To create it all new and breathing.

A heart of stone and molecules of nails
Break the people through nails and boards.
Piece open the walls, unbend new piercing barriers.
Are to deconstruct by piece, breathing it down
And the atoms are made to create all heart.

*A Paradelle is a fictional form of poetry created by Billy Collins to parody the strict forms (Sonnets, etc) which involves reusing the words of previous lines. See here for more information on the "form" and other examples.

This Paradelle was crafted for LJ Idol, season 7.
themegaloo: (DW- Amy- Thinking deep thoughts)
Once upon a time when I was young and innocent and watching as all the black caps flew into chaos at my high school graduation, I thought to myself: "This is it. This is when my life really begins."

Two years later and most of the excitement of college had faded, I no longer obsessively bought supplies for my classes and organized my notes and binders into anything I could easily access. Two years after we both left home and went to college I was back at home with my boyfriend for the weekend. Three and a half years in and things weren't going well, but I'd put so much time and effort into being with him that I didn't know how to stop. On Friday he was looking at engagement rings. On Sunday we were over. This was not the rest of my life, and I wasn't going to let anyone choose for me anymore. I decided then and there (after some angry tears, large amounts of chocolate and an embarrassing wipe-out of a fall at Walmart) that this was it, this was when my life was going to start.

A college town in the summer in a largely abandoned dorm (one of the few other inhabitants being aforementioned ex) is, in short, not the best place to kick start your brand new life. For months, all my networking fell flat, I still only had a handful of friends and my roommate had been dating my ex's roommate for longer than even he and I had known each other. But I still kept that drive, that decision that this freedom was when my life was going to start, I was not going to let anything keep me down, I was going to meet people and go places and learn to be outgoing and fun. I was going to pick my world up from the ruins it had become and goddamnit, I was going to enjoy it.

Eventually, it worked. My last year of college was one of the best times of my life. I had friends, I had people who cared about me, I was doing well, I had a plan. I had my moments where things didn't work how I wanted them too, but they worked out better for my initial failures. I missed all the deadlines for the American universities I was interested in but I managed to apply to one European one, I got in. I was over the moon. This was it, this was definitely it, this was when life really started. With moving, by myself, to Ireland.

My plan didn't work out. Sure, I went to Ireland, I got my degree, it was another amazing time in my life because all my hard work had paid off, I really had become fun, outgoing and interesting to be around. I knew everyone, they knew me, I loved every second of the social aspect of my decision. The academic? Well, parts I loved, parts I found mind-numbing. And in the end, I didn't have the drive to get over the mind-numbing because it was numbing all the passion I had once had for my plan. This was clearly not where my life was starting.

I came home. I wrote my dissertation. I tried dating again. I got a job. I applied to another degree and was working my way into excitement again, all read for my life to start, finally, because it was time, damnit, it was time for it to be my time.

It wasn't.

Life, I've found, is nothing but a constant series of winding myself up, hoping for the best, and eventually watching it drift away. It's grabbing that wind-up key and pushing with all your might to keep trying and keep riding the roller coaster that is life with all its ups and downs, being the little wind-up toy marching along and hoping he's not about to fall off a desk.

But no one gets anywhere without marching forward and sometimes in the brief instant before you crash on the floor, you fly.
themegaloo: (DW- Eleven- Bowties are cool.)
There's something inherently awkward about Introduction Posts. Perhaps it's reminiscent of sitting around a circle in grade school, struggling to come up with something brief, memorable, and interesting about yourself for your classmates to remember you by. Or maybe it's because we're all so much more complex than a simple, or even convoluted, explanation can possibly convey.

Out in the world, no one gets the facts about you right up front. Maybe you're at work, you introduce yourself to a customer and while the inevitable discussion of wedding dresses commences, you start to get a feel for each other and the little details get slipped into conversation. But then, these aren't people you really need to know you inside and out, and yet it helps to be memorable. But then again, maybe you're out a bar and someone buys you a drink, and maybe at the end of the night when all you know about the other is their taste in beer and ability to sing when intoxicated, you find a little karaoke sign-up-slip with a name and phone number. Or maybe you just meet. On the street, at the store, over a flat tire. We're coming up on 7 billion people on this rock rotating around the sun and permanent solitude is less and less feasible every day. You can be alone in a crowd, but it's hard to be truly alone.

There are innumerable ways to make someone's acquaintance, and that first spark, that first bit of interest, that's what I love most in the world. Maybe, even if just for the moment I'm standing still, the world around me never is. And that's sort of the gorgeous thing about it.

But as you can't size me up, look me in the eye and try to figure out what makes me tick from the other side of a computer screen, here are a few tips:

• My name is Megan, I go by Meg on the internet because no one wants to type those last two letters. I'm 24 years of age, I have two degrees in literature. I'm currently a wedding consultant at a bridal store and I enjoy it, even if it doesn't pay me quite as well as I'd like during the slow season. I live with my parents and we're about to move from a condo to a real house in the next month.
• I'm short and "tossable," I have hair that I dye dark red, my default facial expression is a little grin. I'm pretty happy and comfortable in my own skin.
• The world of internet dating amuses me. I had a boyfriend for a while that I met through it, but in the end, it didn't work out. I'll go one several unique dates in one week just to see what makes everyone tick. Usually, those don't work out in the end either because I'm picky. But I still love the excitement of meeting them.
• I love stories. Other worlds, other ways of living, I love experiencing them. I read, I watch a lot of TV shows, I enjoy a good number of movies. And yes, I delve into the fandom side as well. Some of the things I watch/read warm my soul like apple pie and good tea on a cold day warm the body. I do a lot of living in my own mind.
• I still don't know what I want to do when I grow up, and I'm kind of okay with that, mostly. I'd be stupid not to work through the busy season at my current job, but after that I'm going to let the world take me wherever it takes me. Afterall, that's my second favorite thing in the world.

This is my second attempt at LJ Idol, I look forward to the writing and the reading, and maybe I'll even stick my head in on the Green Room from time to time this go 'round.
themegaloo: (DW- Amy- Thinking deep thoughts)
Have you ever noticed that when you don't post for weeks on end, it gets harder and harder to find a reason to?

So hello, LiveJournal. I'm still out here, still kicking, still reading. Actually reading books again, even, which is really, really nice. Still working, but that's a story for another day.

New season of [ profile] therealljidol is getting ready to start up, and I've missed writing like I was missing reading and this year, I'm not in the midst of dissertation madness and panics, I'm employed, and I've settled into the new place to the extent that I'll be sad to leave it in (less than) a month now.

Oh, the stories I have to tell...
themegaloo: (TW- Jack- Concern for the world)
"You people and your quaint little categories."

Imagine my amusement at spending an evening introducing my mother to Torchwood only to come back to the internet to find this new topic. Brilliant. Ironic, but brilliant, because really? Sex is one thing everyone has an opinion on.

Sexual Ethics? Well, mine probably aren't that great. But then, what defines good sexual ethics? Monogamy? I think it's pretty obvious that isn't the only choice and really doesn't suit a lot of people at all. Not going behind someone's back? Boundaries on who you are or are not interested in? Denial? To me, it sounds like a lot of denial.

Years ago when I was in high school, I was staunchly in the court of you don't have sex until you're married, you only ever have sex with that one person and you have babies. Well, I was raised very Catholic. But then you look around at the world and you have all this sex in movies and television and advertising--it's everywhere, quite literally. Sex sells, as they say, it's the forbidden fruit, Garden of Eden and all that.

"Here's to Eve, mother of our race, who wore a fig leaf in just the right place. Here's to Adam, father of us all, who was Johnny on the spot when the leaves began to fall."

I have a problem with roommates. Not mine, usually. I had one long-term relationship at the beginning of my college years, after that I sort-of dated two of his ex-roommates, from different years. The one guy I did date was roommates at the time with his roommate's ex-roommate. It was a complicated sort of web of a mess but strangely, never seemed to pass the boundaries too badly. But then again, we didn't talk.

"I don't date."

Plenty of people have heard me say this in the past two years, and it's true. I don't date. Dating someone means that I have to be with them and only them in that big accepted idea of dating, and unless I'm going to be with them and only them for the rest of forever, it doesn't sound very fair. Maybe I've taken that to an extreme. Maybe I'm terrified of commitment and am never going to get over it, I don't know. I don't date. It isn't fair and I've got eyes, I've got eyes and I'm someone who's been kissed a lot.

This evening my mother and I were talking about my youngest sister. She, too, had a terrible relationship, one that has fairly recently been officially shot in the water and ended. He tended to call her a whore. She's a virgin and her response was always "I've kissed two guys in the past year, how does that make me a whore?" I concur. I kiss two guys in a night. With startling regularity.

I think my record is at 14. There was a toga involved.

Am I wrong? Do I violate sexual ethics? Probably. But the important thing is that I don't violate my own sexual ethics. I'm true to myself, I don't hold myself back when it comes to feeling affection and attraction to people, I want the people I care about to be happy, no matter who it is they're with. Have I gone behind someone's back? Once, yes, and I told her about it. Plus it was a question of "are you happy?"

She was my roommate. I have a thing with roommates.
themegaloo: (DW- Malcolm- NERDLOVE)
Growing up I, like many other children, hated the dentist. And brushing my teeth, and mouth wash and flossing and all that horrid stuff, especially when I was told to stop eating so much candy as it was giving me cavities, etc.

So I'm sure you can imagine my horror when I heard those three dreaded words: You need braces. I did not! My teeth were fine! Alright, there were one or two that were a little uneven and I had a little bit of an overbite, but I had seem so many people with worse teeth that it hardly seemed to be anything of consequence. But, confused as I might be, I ended up with the braces. Two years of going back to the dentist every month to have my teeth tugged about until they suited the orthodontist in where they were inched that little bit closer to, of trying to pick colors for tiny little rubber bands that I wouldn't hate before the month was out, of perpetually sore teeth.

But this isn't about the braces, not really. This is about the retainer.

I'm sure anyone who's ever had a retainer has at least one amazing story of how they threw it out. This is mine.

I was fourteen when I got rid of the braces, and just about to go to a big theatre competition. My school had won for our state and we were going to represent the state in the South Eastern Theatre Conference. That really is a story all in itself, but the fact of the matter was that it was in Florida in March and we decided to take one of our "free" days on the trip to go have lunch at the beach. Which means, necessarily, eating out of wrappers on the ground and having a good laugh of things and beating off the seagulls who kept trying to steal my cheetos. Not being used to owning a retainer, it naturally made its way into the somewhat disgusting off-season trash bin.

For about an hour and a half.

Then I realized what had happened and raced back to the trash bin and am, literally, upside down in it trying to find my retainers when the adults, a little ways down the beach, notice. My mother was chaperoning the trip and our director for the play grabbed her elbow and went "Kathy! That's your child!" before shouting up at me that there was still plenty of food. Like I would really be eating out of the trash!

In the end, one of the other chaperons helped me locate the retainer with a pizza box, shifting things about including a dirty diaper and some decomposing lettuce. It was found, eventually, and not worn until it could be sufficiently cleaned. In boiling water and antibacterial and toothpaste.

That story followed me all throughout the rest of my high school theatre days, leading to several running jokes and a few "slammy" awards, including a pacifier clip intended for my retainer. The story has been told many times, by many people, and often in highly embarrassing places, but really. What's the use of a great story about accidental dumpster-diving if you can't smile at yourself?
themegaloo: (Merlin- Arthur- The chicken is a lie.)
So I'm sure I'm not the only person who looked at this and went "...okay well that's all well and good, but what am I going to write about?" And then googled and got all manner of things about politics and reform, then went on wiki to find it doesn't have a page, urbandictionary to see something about the obvious meaning... Nothing really to jog the brain.

And then I thought about a conversation my mum and I had not two days ago. We had gone to CVS and Food Lion to pick up her hormones and a few things I needed for dinner. My dad had bought most of the ingredients for me to make a curry, but not quite enough tomatoes or spring onions, which, let me tell you, are rather vital to this curry! There were more than enough peppers, mind, but that is hardly the point.

Now, I've been in a lot of Food Lion's across the south and in most of them, as far as I can recall, they go "Welcome to Food Lion!" as you walk in. So they did that, we picked up the vegetables, checked out and were heading out. I hadn't thought much about their greeting at first, but as we were leaving they were clowning around with it, like there was some sort of competition as to who would be the first to shout it out. Ribbing at each other and the like. I said as much to my mum, she agreed, said it sounded like there were a cake on the line or something.

Which got us to talking about the differences between here and Georgia. I'd never really took much notice of the Food Lion thing of shouting welcomes, but in retrospect I could recall that it did tend to happen, and had always been quite natural. This didn't feel natural. It's as though we're still in the south, technically, even if it's not in the 90's and sunny still in October, but not as far south. So they'll say "Welcome to Food Lion!" but they don't seem to mean it quite as much.

I like being said hello to when I'm out at the shops. It's the opening, the invitation to have a quick chat as your items are being scanned at the register, to idly comment on the weather, etc. I've always been the sort of person to strike up conversations in the elevator, at the rest stop, in the bar, in the queue. It's served me well and lets me know, passingly, a lot of people. It's that one moment, a quick connection that lets you know for sure that you are not alone in this universe.

But that hello? That "Welcome to Food Lion!" That one felt like an empty gesture, like something the boss said to do, like being told to upsell at the movie theater. I worked in one for a while and I never, ever figured out how to say "LET ME MAKE YOU SPEND MORE MONEY" without sounding like an arse. So mostly, I didn't. But I was fast, nice, and efficient so they never had a problem with me. Even trained me in the "cafe," which they only let a few people do because you'd be on your own. So yeah, maybe if I got the secret shopper one day, I'd have been in a bit of trouble, but mostly? I did alright. And I felt good about it too, because I would talk to them for those few minutes, figure out what they needed, and serve it with a genuine smile on my face because I was having fun doing it, no matter how crap the job really was.

We live in a consumerism market, with goods and services pushed at us from every direction by people who are told to "be polite," but what I like? I people who are polite and friendly just on their own accord. Because that, that right there, is what makes living fun.

One little moment, however inane the conversation is in subject, that's really, actually, truly real.
themegaloo: (Merlin- Merlin- Great outdoors!)
Hello and welcome to my journal! This introduction is serving for two purposes: the main one is for LJ Idol, which I mentioned briefly earlier this evening. The other is for the fact that I haven't done one in donkey years and have made a lot of random friends since that time. Some of you I've talked to a good bit in comments or on IM, others I haven't.

I like to think I lead an interesting life, though it's interesting more in the case of how disgustingly normal it can be rather than any huge upheavals or problems. I'm 23 years old and have a degree in English and will soon have a M. Phil in Anglo-Irish literature. When people ask me where I'm from, I'm not sure how to answer anymore. I have a bit of wanderlust, but I don't see that as a bad thing, except possibly for the amount of debt it's putting me into!

I was born in Virginia, lived briefly in South Carolina, but lived most of my life in Georgia, where I attended undergrad. I spent the last year living in Dublin, Ireland, and in the meantime, my parents moved to North Carolina on account of my sisters finally finishing high school and moving out of our house. My dad was self-employed for four years in order to keep the family in the same city as we grew up and took a better-paying job which caused the move. When I came back to the US a month ago, I moved back in with my parents until I take my next step, which will be a third degree, probably.

My parents have been happily married for over 25 years, I have two younger sisters and we grew up in a great neighborhood with a backporch and yard and a playset my dad built. We played tag, ghost and the graveyard and built horrible three forts with our neighbors, were allowed to do all manner of extracurricular activities, had lemonade stands and played in the sprinklers. I have a great relationship with both of my parents and get on well with both of my sisters, we've had a brilliant life.

I like stories. I had a friend once who would say to me, "tell me a story," every day when I'd sign online, it made me look at my life as a collection of stories. I think everyone's life is a collection of stories and I love hearing them and telling my own. I think I have some pretty good ones. Several of my friends have said to me that my life is more like a soap opera than reality at times, and while it is all true, I can see where they're coming from. Someday, I hope to write it all down, except I can't do that until it comes full circle somehow.

I dated a guy in high school and college for 3 1/2 years. It was mostly miserable at the end and we don't speak now, but I have to admit that the relationship, breakup, and two years of anger and issues he left me with shaped me. When I left him behind, I changed my entire outlook on life. It was hard and there were days that felt like hell, but I'm happier for it and a lot more outgoing than I used to be. Friendship, consequently, is the cornerstone of my life more so than any romantic relationship. I don't date, which tends to confuse people from time to time, but it's getting easier. I refuse to commit myself in any real way until I know for certain that it's the person I want to spend my life with.

I'm a southerner from the deep south with...most of what that entails. I'm not a bible-thumper and I don't like sweet tea, but I believe in southern hospitality and homemade cookies. I tend to be better at talking to people in person than via the internet, but I do well enough here as well. I've climbed trees and had Sunday afternoon picnics and gone stargazing and been kissed in a cotton field at 3 in the morning while my toes froze from the dew. I don't really know what to do with snow, but I did get to have my first snowball fight while I lived in Dublin. I was frozen after and required a hot cup of tea to warm up, but it was brilliant fun! We also made a snowman that slowly became anatomically correct with vegetables passed out the window. I love to sing and drink, now, in moderation, though I have definitely drank to excess in the past, oh, year, many times. I've mostly learned my lesson with that and my most recent birthday marked a full year since I'd puked on account of it, though the making out with inappropriate people did tend to make for good stories. I love costumes and Halloween and parties and meeting people and having a simple good time. I did theatre as well.

Generally, I'm a nice person. I give trust easily, but it's hard to win it back from me once you've lost it. Though generally, I'll do my best to be polite, at least, even if there is some reason I dislike you.

Most of the time I spend online is dedicated to fandom in some way, and has been for years. I've been a quiet part of several fandoms over the years, but am starting to speak up a bit more in my current one: Merlin. I got to watch a lot of BBC shows while I lived in Ireland and really enjoy all the people I've met because of them! I've done LJ RP and run a small game with my good friend, Nez, who I lived with for the better part of two months in Dublin, though I've not had much time for it lately on account of moving back here and the dissertation I'm working on finishing up this week.

Which, speaking of, I'd best get back to! Thanks for reading and I'll be playing catch up on everyone else's Introductions soon, I just have to tackle some Edgeworth first...
themegaloo: (Merlin- Merlin- Ancient magic)
Hey guys! This is a quick note to let you all know I'm signing up for [ profile] therealljidol, which means a few things!

• More frequent Posts About Things for the next...however long I stay in this competition.
• Me being you know, around more, as soon as I finish off the final bits of ye old awful dissertation thingy.
• AN INTRODUCTION POST. Which is something I don't frequently do and probably should just so you lot know who the hell I am, right? Watch this spot! Well, your flist, this journal, it'll be up later.

So yes! Hopefully this will go well for me and make me less lazy about updating this thing. If you decide you don't want to watch me do this, feel free to just scroll past the entries or defriend, I still very, very rarely make locked posts so if you ever want to swing by again, you're welcome to.

In the works for the next few weeks are also a lot of Merlin-related things, so if you're reading for that, don't worry! I haven't forgotten about you. I'm just busy and was existing on dial-up for the past week.

PS: If I were to offer to make custom layouts for fun, would anyone be interested in it? NOT NOW OF COURSE, THINGS TO DO, but later. Like other characters in the style of this layout. That sort of thing. Just wondering if it would be worthwhile!

August 2012

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