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Really, this is just an excuse to show off my new floor.

“If you lost about fifty pounds, you’d have guys lining up to date you. Heck, I might even be one of them.”

 I looked at the slice of pizza in my hand as I tried to pick my chin up off the floor. Had he really just said that? I decided to give him a chance to recant. I raised a warning eyebrow. “What?”

 He didn’t get the hint. “Yeah. If you lost some weight, you’d be the perfect girl. Totally date-able.”

 I performed a quick mental search of the backlog of our conversation up to that point. Had I asked his opinion on how I could be more attractive? No. Had I inquired as to why the guy I was interested in wasn’t going for me? Nope. Had I accidentally hit on him, inspiring him to make it clear that he wasn’t interested in being my next crush? Definitely not.

 I suppose I could have returned the attack. I could have pointed out that it certainly wouldn’t have hurt him – skeletally and scientifically speaking, of course – to drop 50+ pounds himself and that doing so might just be the answer to the knee and back problems he was always complaining about. You know, since we had entered into the unsolicited advice portion of our dialogue. Apparently.

 But this was not random street harassment that could be dealt with and dismissed with a stunning display of pettiness. This was my friend, who allegedly cared about me. He probably thought he was being helpful. He probably even thought he was paying me a compliment about what an awesome human I was.

 It was not helpful. It was not a compliment. And unlike a comments from strangers who could be dismissed because they didn’t know me, coming from a friend, it was personal.

 I was so appalled, however, that I was unable to completely remove all the sass from my reply. “No, what I need to lose are the misogynistic jerks in my life who think a girl has to be thin to be lovable.”

 The conversation got really awkward after that.

 This is one of the stories I like to tell when people ask where I get my confidence. They usually aren’t looking for the real answer, particularly if the question is part of a conversation about beauty or dating. They’re not really interviewing me about my greatest strengths. They don’t want to hear that I love my intelligence and my wit and my loyalty, or the fact that my cooking has brought tears to people’s eyes (because they enjoyed it, to be clear). They don’t even really want to know how much I’m obsessed with my adorable feet or how I’m really growing to love my arms. They want to know how I – a fat girl – could possibly think so highly of myself, particularly in a society that does not statistically share that opinion about the rotund.

 Where do I get my confidence? By standing up for myself. By calling a lie a lie, particularly when it was a lie that – until I heard it spoken aloud and realized how awful and wrong it sounded – I had secretly believed myself.

 I get confidence from friends who remind me to fight the lies. Since I have been trying to lose weight (19 pounds down, btw), I have had several concerned friends affirming their love for me and making sure I remember what the changes I’m making in order to work toward this goal will do for me (lower my blood pressure/calm my blood sugar levels down/allow me to run without snapping my small-boned twig ankles) and what it will not do for me (make me even more fantastic and worthy of the space that I take up in the world, because according to us – and really, who else’s opinion even matters at all? – I’m already there). I have good friends.

 I also get confidence from reading books like Shrill. Lindy West is hilarious. I particularly liked her chapter on how she answers the confidence question. This is a book I’ll be buying so that I can read it aloud at parties. I highly recommend it for people of all shapes and sizes.

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Mom and Dad visited this weekend and brought me a table! Mom, Tammy, and I spent a lot of time cleaning the table and putting things to place, and Matt and Dad spent a lot of time running errands and cooking out, putting up pictures and curtain rods, and changing the oil in my car. They all spent the weekend saying how much they really like the new place. I feel pampered and full of steak.

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The apartment is coming together. The furniture is all in place (and it looks less cluttered now). I even have room to grow on my bookshelves! Yippee!!

What was your week like?

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I always struggle to find a picture for Friday Five. So I made one. I don’t hate it.

I have been an emotional wreck lately. Just in case I thought I was going to busy my way into skipping my seasonal funk with a new job and a new place to live this year, my mind and body wanted me to know – nope. There it is. Late, but very present. Hi, funk. Can’t say that I’ve missed you.

But God bless the Internet. Here are my five favorite things from the intrawebs this week:

1. Luvvie’s commentary on Bush’s giddiness during the Battle Hymn of the Republic. I love this so much I had to read passages out loud to my coworkers. While cackling.

2. Those who follow my page on Facebook have already seen this one, but I like it so much I’m sharing it again. I wish I had written this – Why I am Skeptical of White Liberals in the Black Lives Matter Movement by Emma Lindsay. I especially like the line in the middle – “But wait! Not everything is hopeless shit, hold on.” That pretty much sums up my life philosophy.

3. Jessica Goudeau’s How to Become Woke is a great example of how to educate each other. It involves a good mix of practicality and learning to adopt a mindset that is conducive to change.

4. Stephen Colbert is ridiculous. He crashed the RNC in costume like he was hosting the Hungry for Power Games. I laughed and laughed.

5. And my favorite thing on the Internet this week – Michelle Obama sings carpool karaoke with James Corden and Missy Elliott. I know it’s a happy video, but I just started blubbering about halfway through. Don’t go. I miss you already.

What have you enjoyed this week?

Moving is almost over. I have the donation pile to take today, and then I finish cleaning. And then I’m done. So by 9:00 p.m. – it’s over. I am moved. *much rejoicing*

 

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I stayed in the new place for the first time on Friday night. So on Saturday, I enjoyed some of the first comforts of home. I bought petunias to hang on the patio and had my first coffee in the apartment. The first thing I saw when I woke up on Sunday was my embroidered painting. I will probably eventually hang it on the wall, but I kinda like it where it is for now.

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Of course, the first place I am unpacking/arranging is the office. I have so many boxes and room to grow.

Curtains are on the purchase list, but for now, I kinda like waking up with the sun instead of an alarm.

 

What was your week like?

Moving, Week One

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Y’all. My new place is CUTE.

Let’s all bask in the glory of that flooring. Most days, it’s all I can do not to sink to the floor when I walk in and whisper, “I love you!”

Despite all the sleep I’m not getting (although the world is mostly to blame for that. Lord, have mercy). Despite the bruises all over my arms from moving so many boxes that were probably heavier than I should have been lifting (what I lack in strength I make up for in stubbornness). Despite the sore muscles and the complete lack of free time. I’m happy.

Last week was the first week of the move, and this week should pretty much finish it up. Technically, I have until next Wednesday to be out of the old place, but I don’t see it taking that long. We have already started unpacking part of the kitchen, and I look forward to unpacking books.

The bookshelves get moved Friday. Then the books and the floor will be competing for my affection.

 

I’m working on fine-tuning my Internet presence, and Snapshots is a new blog category that I think will help me do that. Every week (my goal is Monday or Tuesday), I will post pictures or, if there are a lot of them, collages of pictures that illustrate the previous week. It may eventually turn into a link-up, because there are a lot of you who do similar things, and I would love to host a place where we can see snapshots of each others’ lives. Comment below if you’d be interested in such a thing. Posts can be just pictures or pictures and short (or long – you do you) descriptions.

 

In a former church I loved, my favorite story ever told was the story of the muskox. When attacked, the herd will engage in a circle defense – they will wad up and face outward. You can’t just fight one muskox – you have to fight them all.

Let’s be muskoxen. Wad up against inexcusable injustice of black lives being thrown away by the people hired to protect them. Or by anyone.

Do not tell me you are pro-life if this doesn’t enrage you. Do not tell me you have the legal right to own/carry a firearm and then fail to be outraged when law enforcement kills someone for legally carrying a gun.

Alton Sterling. Philando Castile. Know their names. Watch the videos. When the subsequent nightmares mean you don’t get adequate sleep, consider that a small price to pay for the injustice we have allowed to continue. Recognize the privilege in having the nightmare go away when you wake up.

This is our mess.

Further reading:

“Picking up the trash of white supremacy is my job.” – Abby Norman via SheLoves

“If the illegal killing of Black people by the police bothers you, as it should, talk to your White friends about it. There are many nuances and ambiguities in institutional racism, but the police committing murder is not one of them.” – Justin C. Cohen’s Advice for White Folks in the Wake of the Police Murder of a Black Person.

And listen:

“Imagine your grip on the hope you’ve carried in your heart about their future since the moment they left your body loosening as they look less and less like innocent children to our society. Imagine doing everything right as their parent. Imagine raising them to realize their potential and know their worth and to be proud of their skin. But also imagine having to teach them the realities of living in it, how to persevere in spite of them, and yet still sit with that fear revolving around your heart because this society has yet to move past lynching and hunting bodies housed within Black skin.” – A’Driane Nieves – Brick by Brick, You Must Obliterate the System

“We have learned to justify these people’s murder, feeling validated in our assertions of their guilt by things discovered after the person is already dead and gone. We paint the victim as a villain, dehumanizing them to the point that we no longer see them as someone’s child, someone’s father, someone’s brother…but just another thug who got what they deserved.” – LaSondra Spears – What Do We Tell Our [Black] Sons?

“We cant breathe and yet we speak back. We band together and raise our whispered voices to a shout. We gather together in public spaces both physical and virtual and shout that our lives do matter. When it is we who have long been the victims of violence are told to ‘remain calm’ we will not. I am not calm.” – Austin Channing – Age of Understanding

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Hello, June. You look pretty. And delicious.

Note that there are no pictures of my move in the collage above. The place I was really excited about fell through, but now I have a place I’m even more excited about and I GET TO PICK UP MY KEY TODAY!! Specifically, I get to pick up my key in two hours. I’m very excited. I don’t have time to actually get any moving done today as I have book club tonight (because please – like I’m going to miss book club for any other reason than being out of town), but I am squeezing in a little bubbly to toast the new place with a couple of friends beforehand.

I feel like I’m mostly into cardboard right now, because that’s what my apartment looks like. Boxes everywhere. I miss my books. Soon, we will be reunited, and how glorious that will be!

I have an idea for my NaNoWriMo project in November, and it requires (REQUIRES) watching and reading a lot of film noir. So I’m going through this list. I look forward to getting higher on the list, because right now these selections are working hard to talk me out of writing in this genre.

After seeing Amy Acker’s Q&A at the Dallas Fan Expo, I needed to see Dollhouse, and I ended up really liking it.

I haven’t been reading as much as I usually do during the summer, but A Walk in the Woods by Bill Bryson was my favorite thing I read last month.

I’ve been eating simple food that does not require me to cook, because 1) Texas heat and 2) moving. I’ve had a lot of nachos and cereal lately. Luckily, I love nachos and cereal. I mean, not together but…you get it.

What are you into this month?

I’m linking up with Leigh Kramer. Join us?

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