March 20, 2011

My Golden Age: Being 22

ALAS! This post is finally getting written. Settle in, suckers! It's going to be a longggg one! It has been building up in my mind and fingers for just over a month now. Now that it is here I'm a tad anxious (BIG TIME ANXIOUS).

As I review the post from this time last year, I can't help but think that it was an extremely weak lead up into turning 22. Maybe that's because I was being extremely naive about what the year would actually hold for me. I cannot even believe it it actually unfolded how it did. I want to always remember this year, so I'm here to summarize the hell out of it.

Of course, I turn to Lin Brehmer to really pull this whole thing off. When I first heard this

air a few months ago, I thought it was just by sheer luck. I was closing up in my shoppe, and perhaps I was there a little later than I should have been, and then it was time and I heard this ode to being 22. And I listened. And I cried. How was I going to part with this fabulous age full of the most amazing experiences? How was 23 going to be better than 22? I don't know what it is about this new age of 23, but I'm extremely finicky about it. Is it the number? Maybe I'm getting that irritating flashback of Blink-182 where they declare "Nobody likes you when you're 23!" It could be likely this feeling is provoked by people saying "being 23 sucks." It does kind of sound like a drag. I'm really trying to find a bright side to this. So here's to the year! Everything below stands out extremely vividly in my mind over the course of being 22. Of course it's in order! ;)

The New Living Situation (3/21)
I moved in with Eric a few days before my birthday, but I think officially the day before. It's the first time living away from my parents and it's been a really great experience. We've really made this space our own, even though it was a total bachelor pad. I have not "chick-ed" out his place and have kept it preeettttyyy neutral. But I have learned so much this year through living with Eric. I feel like a completely different person through all the things I've encountered & picked up from him. He got me hooked on a countless number of shows, politics, and technology. I couldn't be more thankful that I live with such an amazing person & I get to share my space with him each day. How fantastic!

The first show in order after turning 22 was Spoon on (4/1)
no pictures unfortunately (on an old phone). It was at the Aragon and we had a good spot. A great show, very similar to the New Years Eve show, except they included more songs because their new album was actually out by the time April came around. I love seeing Spoon with Eric just because he loves them and I love them and we just enjoy seeing them together a lot. He just has so much excitement when he sees them live and I like seeing that come through :)

Thom Yorke with Atoms For Peace was next show at the Aragon on (4/11)
I really wanted to be front row for this, but I knew it would be a tough feat. We ended up having pretty good spots, but we were back at the Aragon (It kind of felt like home last year). It was amazing, but that feels like an obvious statement because it's Thom Yorke we're talking about here. One of my favourite artists of all time, I couldn't believe I was seeing him live. I couldn't contain myself when he busted out some Radiohead. This was one of my birthday presents from Eric.

The next night was Florence + The Machine on (4/12) at the House of Blues
Holy hell. I can't even believe this experience happened. LOOK HOW CLOSE I WAS! I went to this show with one of my best friends, Cady. You don't even understand the disappointment I feel when I know I will be missing her second show here in Chicago, but I know that this first show was the true primo experience. Two of my all time favourite artists back to back?! Something like that only happens if you're golden. Or if you're my mom and see Melissa Etheridge onenight and Madonna the next. That's pretty close too. Oh & I snagged the setlist ;)

On (4/22) we saw Passion Pit at Congress Theatre!
This show was righteous because it was on the 22nd of a month, so that was ideal.
The amount of kids on drugs at this show was almost overwhelming.
There were kids throwing up and passing out in all corners and in bathrooms.
It was just extremely odd. We were all the way in the back, but could see because we were on a platform. I'm just so glad they closed out with "Sleepyhead" because that song ruled my life for a solid month. I have to make a not here because the lead singer, Micheal Angelakos had a sinus infection and seriously sounded amazing. I was skeptical about seeing them live, but they're great.

on (5/20) we saw Metric at the Vic
Woohoo! I love Metric. I remember the first time Cady & I saw them a few months before at Cubby Bear we were going to start our own Metric Religion. I went with Eric to this show and he wasn't feeling the whole meshed in the crowd show thing so we headed up to the balcony. We parked it in front row all the way to the left. As soon as the music started I was up and dancing. Opps-I'm a crowd person, I need to dance exuberantly at shows. I continued to be the only one even standing, let alone dancing, which allowed Emily Haines and I to have a moment at the end where we pointed at each other from stage to balcony. It happened and it was beautiful. Emily Haines always makes me want to be a rock star.

A few days after on (5/29) we packed up
& flew down to Savannah, GA for a week to spend here & in Hilton Head
I had never been here before, but Eric had been many times as a kid & it's one if his favorite places. We rented a convertible and cruised all over Savannah and Hilton Head. I was so excited to get to see that place and he was happy to have shared those memories with me. We went during his birthday, so we were there until June 6th or so. Such a great vacation! I did a huge wrap up in this entry.

A few days after we returned we saw Phish at Toyota Park (6/11).
It was Eric's first Phish show if that says anything. I had seen them twice before. Both times with my brother and sister-in-law and this time Eric joined us. I love seeing Phish just because you can let loose and enjoy yourself, but it depends heavily on who is seated around you. Especially at this sort of venue. I remember camping out and going to see them a few summers ago. Ha, that was a wild experience. However, Phish played my DREAM SET on this particular night. Wolfman's Brother, David Bowie, Divided Sky, Golgi Apparatus, & Prince Caspian! Seeing them on this date was significant. I had seen them on 8/11/09. The day after I started dating Eric. But on this particular night we learned Eric doesn't dig live Phish in the most hilarious way ever. He totally fell asleep :( ha ha ha.

I saw Modest Mouse at Pitchfork on Friday (7/16)
They played a lot of good songs, I'm not really a huge fan of outdoor venues, depends heavily on the artist/crowd. It was similar to the show Eric and I saw awhile back of them at the Aragon. This show was one of the three tickets Eric got me for my birthday :)

Then one of the best nights ever happened; Natalie Merchant on (7/22)

I treated my mom to this one because she had initially turned me on to her music when I was a child. I wrote a huge review on the ticketmaster website. It will be the last one featured if you're interested in reading more about it. During "Kind & Generous" she called down from the stage to ask if my mom and I were "Mother and Daughter?" because we were dancing all over the place together. I snagged a setlist from this show as well. I just never ever thought I would see this artist live. I couldn't even fathom the idea, but when I got those tickets in the mail, it was almost surreal, and then seeing the marquee made it so official and wonderful!

A couple weeks after this was our one year :) (8/12)
and no, we don't like Starbucks coffee-we actually hate it, but that's just where it started :)
I didn't just make him the cookie. Eric got me this Arrested Development memorabilia.
Gob is my favourite character in the show and he uses this scarves in the episode "Missing Kitty". I couldn't even believe it when I opened it!

We spent a day in Chicago on (8/14)
We ate an amazing breakfast at Orange where I got this amazing Chai Tea French toast;
We also caught a Sox game, my first one with my die-hard sox fan of a companion.
He was at the World Series game where they won and enjoys the games immensely.
This is where I guess I was inducted into fan-ship on this day.
He even got me a shirt. I guess that makes it official.

In mid August, a furry friend arrived at our house!
His name is Toby! We took him in after a friend of mine needed a place for her cat to live.
We love him and are so glad we didn't pass up the opportunity! He is a great cat :)

On (9/22) I took a night flight out to Portland, OR to meet Eric
We had wanted to go to Portland together sometime soon, and then the opportunity arose for him to go on business. He did for the first half of the week and I flew out there on Wednesday night. It was an amazing trip. We went to a bunch of scenic spots, went out to the coast, drove up to Washington, stood in a Lahar, and just enjoyed the hell out of each other's company for 5 days. Wow, what an amazing trip to an amazing place. You just get this vibe there. It's a weird place and I hope it stays that way
pictures: Mount St. Helens/Lahar, Yale Park (just a park we stopped at on the drive to Washington), I believe this was a sound we went to, Our hotel room at The Nines (I love this hotel), and Eric and I around in Portland. He's holding coffee from our favourite place out there, Public Doman.

In September I made a huge hair change when I took quite a few inches off.
I did it in my bathroom by myself. I cut it to above my shoulders and I am glad I did it.
I mean, I wish I still had long hair, but it was full of impossible layers. It needed to go one length.
The picture above is halfway. It happened in two stages. You'll see that below.

On (10/5) my Nephew was born.
Jack is the first baby I've ever held.
I couldn't have been more terrified.

October brought a lot of excitement!
I carved a pumpkin that was worthy of putting a candle in!

Eric and I made our third trip of the year by road-trippin out to DC for the Rally To Restore Sanity on (10/30) on the National Mall. He told me we were going as soon as it was announced and there was no objection. We are totally the couple that can be couped up for 10 hours in a car and not go nuts too. That helps. It was a really unique experience. I'm really glad we went.

On the way back home on (10/31) we went to both air and space museums.
I've been to the one at the Smithsonian, but not to the one in Virginia, where they have the good planes. So since it was only thirty minutes away and on the way home anyways, we made a pitstop. I got to see CONCHORDE up close and personal. I love that plane. We watched a documentary on it early in the year and it brought me to tears, I wish it was still in flight. I also got to see the SR-71 Blackbird. I believe it can get from L.A. to New York in 90 minutes. It could be less. It's no longer in flight, but it is such a beauty.

On (11/6) I spontaneously went on a trip with my father to Japan.
You can read more about how that happened HERE. I spent a 9 days there with family and it was such an exquisite experience! I got to see my niece for the first time and see that wonderful country! You can find an onslaught of pictures/summary HERE.

So after I came back from my adventure, it was smooth cruisin' in cookie world as I incorporated some Japanese & Chinese in one bouquet;

Thanksgiving and Christmas were both wonderful. We split them evenly between our families. It was a really good holiday season.

We ended the year on (12/31) with staying in the city.
We saw the Black Keys and stayed two nights at The Hotel Monaco in our favourite suite.
You can read about that whole weekend HERE.

That pretty much sums up everything big that we've done. When people ask me why it is I'm so sad to be 23, I tell them what I did when I was 22 and they join in with my mindset. I saw so many amazing artists, met some great people, learned so much about such a wide variety of things, and just have gained this sense of security that even though I don't know exactly what I'll do for the rest of my life, that I'll make my way. I feel so lucky to have experienced so many trips to different places all over this country and even internationally. I have grown in ways of what it is like to have to be responsible for keeping up a house.

I have learned three things while being 22 and will only continue to grow with this practice-
Ladies; Intelligence, Confidence, & Femininity are your three sharpest tools. Use them.

I have learned the perfect instance in which to just walk away.
I have learned to keep my mouth shut at the right time, but I have learned to speak up when I feel it's necessary or want to learn more on the subject.
I have learned a long walk can fix a lot.
I have learned that there is nothing quite like waking up next to your best friend everyday, but still longing to see them at the end of each work day.

There are many things that I have learned, but as long as I'm alive, that's going to keep happening. As Lin said, "expect suggestions...". I always will expect something from people, but if I get suggestions, let's just hope for good ones. I accept advice with open arms, but I'm careful on which bits to follow.

I'm not afraid of getting older, I just like the numerical appearance of 22. It was also, of course my Golden Year. The best year I've encountered. I can only hope 23 will go smoothly. I'm sure if I still have the momentum of everything that happened last year pushing me, then I will be just fine :)


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