Archive for November, 2010
Even with my limited budget this year, I managed to go out and see some really good shows/events. For example:
1. The Pee-Wee Herman Show at Club Nokia:
Almost two years later, you can still find me every other weekend at the Healthy Spot in Santa Monica, doing my volunteer gig with the Bill Foundation. I spend a few hours with dogs who need just a little bit of affection and attention. What do I usually get out of it? Dog hair, streaks of mud/poo on the front of my shirt, and multiple scratch marks from nails that are in bad need of a trim.
But every now and then you get a dog who thanks you for the attention you lavish. It’s not the dog that gives frequent kisses, or the dog who jumps into a lap as soon as you sit down. For me, it’s the dog that will give a cautious kiss on the cheek; the dog who leans into you as you hold him/her. And in a very rare occasion, it’s the dog that wants nothing more than to “hold hands:”
One of the benefits of working in an environmentally conscious industry is that the people are HEALTH FREAKS. Not in a hardcore vegan-only, no glutton, organic way, but enough for me to really take a look at my diet and realize all of the junk I was eating.
Which probably accounted for the twenty pounds I put on during unemployment, eating frozen food and instant ramen all the time.
Being fully aware of the need to reduce my carbon footprint, I started walking a lot more to places around the office for coffee or for lunch. Lucky for me, I’ve got three different grocery stores, tons of eating options, and a DSW right within a twenty minute walking radius around me. FedEx is located less than a block away, so shipments are ridiculously easy to process. And there’s a hospital about a mile away from the office, which is fantastic.
Working with healthy people also meant that everyone was relatively fit. My first few weeks on the job had me feeling like the fat kid in class, so I stepped up my visits to the gym. (One of the PMs here actually swims out to the first buoy once a week – nothing I’m hoping to accomplish, but damn.) I also quit visiting my late night fast-food places after a drinking binge and opted for a really, really big bowl of Trader Joe’s O’s with skim milk. Before I knew it, I had to go out and buy new pants because the old ones just weren’t staying up anymore. Clothing from my retail days were fitting again.
The biggest bonus, of course, is feeling attractive again. I’ve gone from getting “You’re cute” from guys to getting “You’re hot.” And that’s a huge boost to my self-esteem. So thanks go out to my office for keeping me on track, and for also being the office that won’t bring cakes and donuts in every week.
Obviously the biggest thing I’m thankful for this year is that my unemployment gig only lasted for four months. I realize this sounds like bragging, but I was seriously worried. The recession just fully hit the hospitality industry in LA, and I’d managed to survive three rounds of layoffs during 2009. My dismissal was done quietly; it was just myself and another sales manager (which I wouldn’t find out about until the following day).
My search for a job had me worried. The only real things I was qualified to do was either work for a hotel, serve as a personal assistant, or go back to retail. There wasn’t much call for either of the first two industries, and I had completely missed the holiday hiring season. Unemployed friends in California warned me about a hiring freeze statewide, which had me looking at other locations (mainly the East Coast – multiple job postings were EVERYWHERE in the hospitality industry, and at some of the oldest and hardest hotels to even find positions were posting).
So I made a deal with myself: if I couldn’t find a job by the end of March, I’d borrow a friend’s New York address for my resume and begin looking elsewhere for work. By the second week into March, I began to fill out applications through my old hotel brand for positions at the Waldorf and Corporate Headquarters (which had just moved over to Washington D.C.). It went far enough to receive a call back from Corporate to see why I was interested, and I stretched the truth: my family was located in New York and I wanted to be closer to them. Mentally, I began preparing myself to living in a place that actually had weather and seasons. Los Angeles and I were coming to an end.
Then LA decided to pull a trump card on me, and a job offer was made on the table. I was taking a pay cut, but it was better than living off of the [severely broke] state. The company was just a little over 4 miles away from the house, the people were close to my age, and it was an environmentally focused industry that I found myself plunging into. I could wear open-toed heels, not wear nylons under skirts, and had the options of jeans on Fridays! (Working for Corporate America does not allow for these luxuries.)
My means of employment helped get me out of the depressive state I was under, and I slowly made my way back into my social circle of friends. The internet didn’t annoy me anymore (it seemed like everyone was at work or at least doing something with their time), which was a major relief – how could I not find joy in Newgrounds, TMZ, and Wikipedia? THE HORROR.
This job is definitely amongst the most interesting I’ve had. It hasn’t been all smooth sailing, but hopefully the kinks will be worked out soon. But I’ve got steady income, I’m paying off credit card debt, and I’m not anywhere as depressed as I was at the start of the year.
I think many of us can agree that 2009 was a crappy year. For me, the following happened:
1. Massive amount of cash put into my Beetle due to engine troubles.
2. A department head hits my car in the parking lot and doesn’t say anything about it.
3. My infamous car accident.
4. Made an appearance in court for my car accident.
5. Got laid off.
On the plus side, at least no one died this year (that was my 2008).
At the end of 2009, I wrote an open letter to 2010. I’m sure that it received many, many letters from other people with the same request, but 2010 must have been feeling generous, because I basically got what I asked for. (Although I’m still working on the dog part.)
Thanks, 2010, for not being such a crappy year.
Hi, party people. I’ve been around, just uber busy with work and getting back into the swing of things socially. In short, this breaks down to:
1. Making time for friends, even on school nights.
2. Supporting friends’ bands.
3. Staying active with volunteering gigs.
4. Making a point to see movies before they hit DVD/cable.
That last one you read was correct. This anti-social girl who was tired of the dating game for three years is slowly making a point to get out on the market. *cough*Friends-who-have-single-friends-drop-my-name-if-you’d-be-so-kind.*cough* And why not? Changes are happening: I’ve gone down a dress size, I’ve managed to visit the gym on a twice-a-week basis by myself for near five months now, and I’m able to get back into a lot of clothing from my retail days (a huge accomplishment, as I was nearing a size four back then).
To kick off the holiday season, I’m going to do my posts on What I’m Thankful For, all the way up to Thanksgiving Day. Last year I did a week’s worth, but obviously I’m going to be pressed for time for 2010.
How have you all been doing?