And isn't it ironic?  

Posted by Rachel in ,

Saturday evening, I went to the movies with two of my dearest friends. We went to see Revolutionary Road...and it WRECKED us. I emotionally invest myself in movies, and by the end of this one, I was exhausted. I was stressed. I was DIStressed. I was angry. I was sad. I was limp.

And somehow, by the time we were finally able to move from our chairs, there were only two other people left in the theater - who were also sitting in emotional shock. Was no one else affected?

We spent the rest of the night evaluating our thoughts and feelings after seeing this intense movie. At first, I was angry that I had seen it, but as time went by, I realized that maybe, just maybe, Revolutionary Road got it right.

In some odd way, I have never seen a movie capture so much of our depraved society. And as it painted the picture of the crap that our society lives in, there did not seem to be one character in the whole movie who was shown not living in an empty, void place. For once, the empty life wasn't glamorized. The whole movie followed two people's desire to get away from living the American dream... and to live life to the fullest... to "really feel things"... to live life in a revolutionary way. And yet, what they got was the opposite of that. They tried to fill themselves with love and adventure from all the wrong places. And it didn't work.

Adultery left characters feeling empty, which was only a slight consolation to the intense anger I felt every time a situation like that arose. Anger and unresolved conflict made me squirm in my seat...similar to the unrest it clearly left them in as well. Abortion led to the most extreme of circumstances, and was definitely not the bright spot or the well-deserved choice that so many people think it is. It hurts. It kills. It SUCKS and I hate it with all of my being.

There was so much irony wrapped up in Saturday evening. Ironic that this family lived on Revolutionary Road and yet experienced anything but a revolution in their life. Ironic that the movie clearly painted a picture in my head of just how much our world needs a revolution...needs to know the revolutionary power of Christ. Sadly ironic that a movie that depicts the horrors and evils of abortion is showing at the same time that our country is taking steps towards abortion rights in a way that it never has in the past. But ironic that my pastor talked about the sanctity of life on Sunday morning and a woman who was affected by our crisis pregnancy center was baptized? I think not.

Our best description pf the evening was that it felt like we had just sat in a theater full of lives just like those we had watched on the big screen. People that do not know how to deal with the stressful moments of life. People that find adultery and abortion and anger and conflict something to be laughed at. And so they laughed. There were so many moments in the movie that Becca and I both wanted to yell out, "WHAT'S SO DANG FUNNY?" When the tension became to great to handle, they decided not to even try, which is, ironically, exactly what happened to the characters of this movie.

And so, the night was ultimately ironic in that we watched this movie with a room full of people who very likely live lives in one way or another all to similar to the depressing lives of Frank and April Wheeler. Kinda makes me want to start a revolution.

It's [not] a lonely night in Georgia  

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Four amazing girls and I went to Savannah for the long weekend and it was a blast. Full of laughter (lots, if you can imagine), honest conversation, music, eating, shopping, etc...

And I really wanted to take the time to write a nice long post about it, telling fun stories, sharing pictures, etc. BUT you see, my friend Kristi has already done that here. And so, in light of the fact that I would say a lot of the same things, I am just going to point you there. Please go read it if you are interested in what we did in Savannah because she lined out a GREAT rundown of all our activities. And she included a few pictures.

The one story she didn't tell that is totally worth telling is this:
We went to Jazz'd, a live jazz and tapas bar in downtown historic district, on Saturday night. Just before leaving, we went to the bathroom, and as we were waiting by the door for everyone to get done, a RATHER intoxicated lady comes up to us and says, "Can I just be drunk and obnoxious for a minute?" To which, of course we responded YES. What could be more entertaining than a drunk lady in the bathroom??

She proceeds to ask us, "Am I chopped liver?" Um... no? We weren't quite sure where she was going with it all. Then we find out (more than we wanted, I might add) that she is trying to make it happen with a man at the bar, but she brought her friend with her who happens to be hot and have a large chest (she didn't use such censored language). Well, her friend was stealing the show, even though she knew that this lady wanted to snag the hot guy at the bar. As a side note, she described him as a surfer type, which was totally NOT what he was when we saw him later. So, she's angry at her friend for stealing her thunder, asking us if she should just have left her friend at home, asking us why this guy might be paying more attention to her friend than her, etc. Our favorite part was when she told us that situations like this are what "keep her at home on Saturday nights, making love to her dog...not really...but seriously (please remember, this was all out of the mouth of a drunk lady, as inappropriate as it may seem)." So we try to give her some pretty solid advice for a drunk person, mostly telling her that she is beautiful and that if this guy wants to choose someone else over her, than maybe he's not worth it. Yes, that is the 100% girl-type of response, but all we had. And before she left, the 5 of us, with a completely drunk stranger, enjoyed a large group hug in the bathroom before she went back out to face the guy and her friend. Gooooood times.

Anyways, it was one of our favorite encounters of the weekend, besides, of course, getting the lowdown on the Mark Zuckerburg, of Facebook fame, from his Harvard professor. That was fun too.

So, now... go read Kristi's write-up of the weekend.

What a day  

Posted by Rachel in ,

So, I typed this out a few days ago and saved it without publishing...oops.
Anyways, here it is. I've decided to share two songs that I've been listening to A LOT during my drives to work this week:

What a Day, by Greg Laswell

What a day to be alive
What a day to realize I'm not dead
What a day to save a dime
What a day to die trying

What a way to say good bye
What a wonderful life now
What a way to use your mind
What a day to say good night

"Bring on the evening hours," I cry
"Bring on the evidence of my life"
(My life)

What a day to give a d*mn
What a day for "Gone with the Wind"
And what a day to start again
What a day to give up dry gin

"Bring on the evening hours," I cry
"Bring on the evidence of my life"
"Bring on the evening hours," I cry
"Bring on the evidence of my life"

Let it go
Let it go from here, I don't know
Let it go
Let it go from here, I don't know
Don't know

What a day to visit Seattle
What a day for San Francisco
What a day, holy Toldeo
What a day to get in the air and go
What a day to give up smoking
What a day to absorb
What a day to welcome a baby
And to begin breathing (To begin breathing)

Granted, everything in this song doesn't necessarily apply to me, but Greg Laswell is a musical genius in my opinion and this is a personal favorite of his, so far. Best line? "What a day to get in the air and go." Personally, I believe EVERY day is a good day to get in the air and go. But, whether I am going or staying right where I am, every day has the right to be greeted with the phrase, "What a day!" Every day has the chance to bring new opportunities and great joy, even when mixed with the pain and sorrow. It's all what we make of it, isn't it?

Another one:
The Good Things, by Jill Phillips

Every once in a while the world stops spinning enough
That I can take a step back and get the picture
I see the twists and the turns
I see the patterns they form
I see how perfect they are and I remember

All the good things
All the good things
All the good things
you’ve done for me

Though the feeling is real I know it’s fleeting to feel
One day I’ll forget you are here and start to wonder
In that season of doubt, You’ll still be showering me
With blessings I can’t see, that can’t be numbered

All the good things
All the good things
All the good things
You’ve done for me

Forgive me for my shortsighted look at this world
Where you keep proving that you know what you’re doing
If I could see like you do with your perspective view
The fires I’m walking through would look much different
I’d see those difficult days for who they made me become
And I would count them among

All the good things
All the good things
All the good things
You’ve done for me

Man, this is such a powerful song. Seriously could and should be my life anthem I think, because my perspective on those crappy situations of life is always totally wrong in the heat of the moment. And yet, my shortsightedness fails in light of God's eternal plan. Every time. "I’d see those difficult days for who they made me become, and I would count them among, all the good things..." That's my prayer for 2009.

Transplant, please  

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Well, after my relaxing day on Friday, we were up and on our way to San Diego on Saturday. It wasn't a great day for weather, but we had fun just the same. We spent some time in La Jolla (pictured above), Old Town, Balboa Park (joined by Jenny and Justin - in the picture below - my friends from House Church that recently moved to CA), the mall, and then had a nice dinner in the Gaslamp district. Every restaurant was over-run with SD Charger fans, and it was, in fact, a great game that went to overtime and caused some raucous fans to be on the streets afterwards.
Sunday was so great. Church at Rock Harbor, Kimberly's old church, which was great. Then on to Balboa Island where we borrowed her friends' beach cruiser bikes and had a GRAND time biking all around Balboa Island, and the peninsula. We ended up biking all the way to Huntington Beach, which is, for the record, a pretty long ride on a beach cruiser. The weather could not have been more perfect, and the scenery was, of course, beautiful. I did enjoy a Balboa bar, a la Christy Miller, before leaving the island after 2+ hours of biking and relaxing. Then, last night, we had sushi for dinner at Mosun in Laguna with Jason. Best. Sushi. Ever. And I don't even love sushi! Wish there was somewhere like that in Orlando!
Today has been good too. After another beach-side run this morning (Orlando is seriously lacking the scenic running trails), we went on a hike near Dana Point/Laguna Niguel. The scenery was amazing - beach on one side, snow covered mountains on the other. Tonight, we'll enjoy Happy Hour at Fisherman's restaurant out on the San Clemente pier and then, we will head to LAX to make our way back to Orlando.
It has been a great trip full of friends, laughter, celebrating the New Year, football, parades, good food, Jesus time, reading, exercise, fun activity, relaxing, shopping, etc. I have had time to process over the past year and look forward to the coming year of 2009. I am not quite ready to go home, but alas, we must live normal lives, I guess. Next time I blog, I'll be back in Orlando...home to things, work, family and friends that I love, but not quite the city that wish... can we transplant San Diego or Chicago or NYC or Boston or something right into Orlando, please?

New Years' in California  

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Happy New Year from sunny (well, not so much today...) Californ-I-A. My roommate Kimberly and I decided a while back to take a nice trip to California to ring in the new year, and of course, to take in the Rose Parade and bowl game. So, needless to say, yesterday was a great day. But, before I get ahead of myself, let me go back to the beginning of our adventure.

It started with Crystal taking us to the airport (by the way, if you are reading this Crys, you need to blog from TX) and having to say goodbye to her for good as she is moving to TX before we return from our trip. Sad. But, we actually got to see her again since Kimberly forgot her phone at home and Crystal had to go back to get it and then back to the airport. Perks of living near the airport! So, our trip was off to a great start.

When we arrived in Los Angeles, the friend picking us up from the airport couldn't get there for about 2 hours later. So, we decided to go in search of a coffee shop, which was actually closed once we walked all the way there. But, the perks of being picked up late? A star siting. And not just ANY star. Meredith, from The Office. And so, we saw her while walking to the closed coffee shop, but were too shocked to do anything about it. Then, we found her again in baggage claim, waiting for her bags, so we stalked her (and her family?) for a bit until they were leaving and we rushed for a picture. She was in a rush, but very nice and gracious enough to take a picture with her adoring fans. We withheld all questions about her flask or her near rehap experience with Michael Scott...

Then, I thought I saw a man being suspicious, so Kimberly went to check it out but after walking towards him (assuming him to be stealing something and that she was about to stop him), she saw the dog he had let out of his bag to pee around the corner...just out of our line of sight. But, at this point, she had gone too far towards him and was too close not to say anything, so she awkwardly asked him, "Is that your dog?" Yeah, she got a weird look for that OBVIOUS question and I laughed. A LOT.

Now for Wednesday. We got up (after a very late night at the airport) and went to Pasedena to the Rose Palace, one of the locations where they build the floats for the Rose Parade. We got there just after 12, not knowing that they stopped selling tickets at 12. The viewing area was open until 1 though, so along with a few others, we protested them not selling us any tickets and somehow ended up going through without paying a dime. Awesome. And, it was cool to see a few of the floats up close! Traffic was crazy and kept us from doing much else besides heading home in time for the New Years' Eve party that Kimberly was hosting with lots of her Cali friends. That was a good time, but after watching the ball drop in NYC and realizing we still had 3 hrs to go until California's midnight, we went to bed to prepare for our early and long New Years' day activities. 5 am came early, but it was worth it.

New Years' day was spent in Pasedena. We started by going to the Rose Parade (one of our favorite floats is pictured to the left), where we had a great viewing location with our new friends Adriene, Pam, and family. Pam had been out on Colorado Blvd since 5am...on the 31st. That's over 24 hours waiting on this parade. And, she has been doing that for 30 years! WOW! We got there at about 7am, found a great coffee shop, and meandered our way down the street until we found a place we could watch with no obstructions. It was such a great experience - I've ALWAYS wanted to go to the Rose Parade! Then, we walked (for what seemed like hours) to the game site, and enjoyed "tailgating", which for us really just consisted of a picnic lunch and lots of people watching. People were throwing drinks and food at us left and right though, since most outside drinks are not allowed in the game, and of course, people had way too much.

The game was great. We sat near some fun people... some USC fans and then the Penn State fans that I wanted to take duck tape to their mouths for the first half of the game, but ended up being OK once their team was clearly beyond a come back. And to those of you wondering, no I have not forsaken the Gators, but I did have to make the day fun by cheering on a team with Kimberly. It was for her that I chose USC and not Penn State, and as she said... I can be a hottie fan without being a USC fan. Go Mark Sanchez.

After the game, we met up with Nicole (see the contrasting picture to the left) for dinner at Fred's. It was so good to see her, even though I just saw her in Orlando. But, she is always a joy to be around, and it was fun to see her in her new home area... and to visit Scoopers, or Squeeze'ems, or whatever that place was called. Squeeze and Scoop maybe? I don't know - I could never get it right.

This morning has so far been a relaxing day full of sleeping in, running on the beach (yeah!), eating a late breakfast, and sitting by the fire reading my Bible and journaling. I've decided that it would be my dream world to be able to have days like this muuuuch more often. But, I'll just enjoy them while I can since that dream world doesn't exist. It has been crazy to make sense of yesterday's weather - bright, sunshiney, 80 degrees at the game - and today - overcast and cold enough for a fire. Weird, but it is a great day to be lazy before another full day tomorrow with a day trip to San Diego. Can't WAIT! Now off to more relaxing, and perhaps an afternoon beachside hike. I love California.