Disclaimer: That might be a slight exaggeration.
We’re changing things up today here at La Kocinera! After weeks and weeks of mostly food-related posts, I was getting a little tired of the same routine, plus I’d always meant to include more real life stories and posts about things other than food in this blog. It’s just that many of my thoughts do revolve around food, which makes things slightly cumbersome.
But that’s no excuse. I like talking about life and I like reading about life. However, I find it hard to talk about my life on my blog. Non-culinary aspects of my life, that is. I worry that my stories cross over the line from “interesting and relatable” to “whiney and complaining.” So, as I dive into a completely life-related post, I need you to keep me real. If I start to get annoying and self-indulgent, let me know. We’ll come up with a code word, something subtle like, “Koci, your level of cynicism makes me despair for mankind.”
How about “Skinny, lowfat, sugar-free mocha-vanilla-caramel misto?” There’s no way I’d ever utter that phrase under any other circumstances, so we’d know that something was very wrong. Seriously, I loathe the word “misto.” It’s Starbucks’ term for Cafe au Lait. Every time I go there, I ask for a cafe au lait, desperately hoping against hope that one of the baristas will understand. Usually the response I get is “What’s cafe au lait?”
That phrase makes me too angry now, so let’s try this one more time. The emergency, Koci-you’re-ranting, code word will be…
That’s it—cantaloupe. I hate cantaloupe, so that would totally snap me out of any melancholic reverie into which I had descended and send me squirming and cringing my way back to reality.
Okay, code word = cantaloupe. Good?
With that concept firmly established, here’s a happy, whimsical photo of a flower to ingratiate myself to you before I ask for a favor.
Before I tell you Dr. Koci’s Tips for Happiness and Eternal Bliss, I will first ask that you give me 60 seconds to tell you why I needed to follow this prescription for a good mood and overall smileyness. Deal?
In a nutshell, I feel frustrated.
Ever since June—almost five months now—my dad has been unemployed. While I love him dearly, even he has agreed that our family has been cooped up together for too long. Every single day, all day long, we’re practically living on top of each other. All sense of privacy and quiet has left our house. There is always someone else wherever one of us wants to be. We never get a break from each other.
Wherever I go, I’m constantly with other people. Now I know that sounds incredibly antisocial, but I’m just being honest. I like people just fine, I love my family and friends, but I’m the kind of person who needs time alone—time to recharge and process. Not having that has taken a toll on me. Without being able to recuperate and have some quiet time, I feel like I’m living under this constant, low-grade tension that I can’t shake off. Add this to the stresses of college and life in general, and you’ve got a somewhat brief description of what I’m going through.
So there it is. I’m frustrated with living in this state of transition—of somewhere in between—and the fact that there’s nothing I can do to make things better. I’m not where I was, but I’m not where I want to be. As I become more and more of an adult, it feels like there’s less and less that I understand and that I can count on. Basically, I think the universe realized that I’m about to turn twenty and decided to give me one last, whopping dose of teenage angst.
Phew! Okay, venting over—time for the happy stuff.
Whenever I feel overwhelmed and cranky, I turn to some of the following techniques and coping mechanisms to put a smile on my face.
Firstly, there’s the requisite accessories.
Then there’s cute (and mildly disturbing) cupcake key covers.
Usually around this time I’ll look up a Bollywood video on YouTube, in this case “Kabhi Kabhi Aditi,” which always makes me smile…and wish that people at my school would break out into song and serenade me whenever I have a tough day.
If Bollywood’s not your thing, there’s also that video of that baby…
If you, like me, enjoy photography, there’s always the option to head outdoors in the now beautiful weather and snap some photos of stuff in your backyard.
Finally, there’s my personal favorite—write your Economics notes as if you were Spaghatta Nahdle.
So there it is, just a few little things that help brighten up any sort of gloomy mood or sucky day. Now that I’m done chatting your ear off, I have a little poll to evaluate this whole “real life stories” aspect of my blog.
Question: How do you feel about posts such as this?
a) Love ‘em. I feel like we’ve bonded.
b) Meh, whatever. I don’t particularly care either way.
Leave your answer in the comments—feel free to do so as “Anonymous” if your answer is cantaloupe. If you’re feeling chatty, tell me what makes you smile! For that matter, tell me what makes you feel angsty as well.
Thank you and Good Night.