Sunday, December 23, 2012

A Sports Love Story


All the best people I know are fans of a team. Big fans. People whose lives revolve around two colors and a mascot. These are the people who know about passion, and how to stick with something that's not always going to be perfect. These people can go through season after season of disappointment and still buy a shower curtain or a pair of socks with their teams logo on it, just because the sight of those colors and that mascot incites the same passion within them as they felt when they first fell in love with the team. These people truly believe that despite a bad performance, or a losing season, that their team is the greatest. These people believe that even if the present isn't paying off, there's always the hope of the future.
This love that a fan has for their team is something as inexplicable as two regular people falling in love, and words fall short of its true meaning. In my case, it is just a matter of right place and right time. And just like in real life, everyone has their love stories on how they came to be fans of a team.

For example, just like in real life, you can't always help who you fall for.
The guys I love to hate... and hate to love.
Some of us may hate a player so much, that you eventually confuse your negative passion towards his receding hairline to admiration for his commercial with his son and just as soon as your hate arrived, it vanishes, leaving you a very confused NBA fan. You do anything in your power to stay away from the members of this team, but they’re simply everywhere… and as suddenly as 3 talented men are brought together, you can almost hear the city of Cleveland gasp as they lose another neutral NBA fan to the Heat. 

And just like in real life, sometimes you find someone when you least expect it, and never let them go.
Teach me how to Raji
Some of us just want to be one of the boys and have a team of your very own, and your fifth grade agenda leads you to watch a show about teenagers from Wisconsin, who all love a team from the bay. Upon further research, you fall in love with their quarterback (which won’t be the first green and gold quarterback you fall for) and all the inspiration a coach from the 60’s brought to the team. Not to mention the fact that fans wear your favorite food on their head. It was love at first sight, and still is today. You never question how it happened, it simply did, and you can’t explain it—but the Packers stole your 11 year old heart.

 Finally, in some cases, it is meant to be from the very beginning.
The drunkest night of every UK students' life
Some of us are born into fanhood. As soon as you enter the world (and a brief moment of disappointment overcomes your father as he realizes you are not the boy he dreamt of) there is a blue and white unisex wardrobe awaiting you. And growing up, every time an older relative thinks it’s cute to tell you to say, “Go Cats!” they have no idea how much it sticks with you. Or when your dad takes you in his arms to your first game, and your little eyes widen at the sudden realization that you have never been in the same place with that many people in your short lifetime. When you learn the game from a team, it is almost as if they become your first true love, and every childhood nostalgic memory you’ve ever had, has some sort of blue and white connected to it. You spend your entire lifetime simply believing in the fact that the people who came before you had love strong enough for this team that you’d be stupid not to believe in it to. You absorb every name you hear of past players, and every amazing, historic play that shook the fan base with it’s brilliance, that you only missed because you weren’t born yet.

Of course, just like any long-term relationship, there are times when you may falter. As other types of love drift in and out of your life, you may try to adopt another person’s passion in the form of a red and white bird, or a semi-new football franchise in Texas. You hold love for those teams, but it’s different. You don’t love those teams because when you sleep you dream in their colors, or because your blood pressure lowers when the score is close in a game. Your love for them is out of obligation, and so it fades quickly, especially when the person you loved the team for leaves the picture.
And that’s when you realize how much your own team means to you.
Because of this, because there are many people out there who have a team they love unconditionally, I have made my decision. I want my love story to be a sports love story.
One day I’ll notice a dude, and be impressed by his performance. Maybe I’ll make fun of him for a fumble, and maybe I’ll even dislike him for his cockiness. I’ll see him every weekend, working on his game, and maybe hear about something funny he did outside of the arena I know him from. I’ll creep on his twitter and see that he is really pretty entertaining and begrudgingly follow him, despite my uneasiness about him. Eventually, he’ll execute some SportsCenter top 10 worthy plays and before you know it, I’ll be rooting for him. My agitation towards his team will turn to appreciation and eventually before I even realize it, I’m a fan.
And just like in real life, the love I have for that team will be unexplainable, and despite losing seasons, I’m always going to rock my lucky team undies in hopes of a better season next time around. ;)

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Rudeness is inexcusable.

A burger of epic proportions

So I take a burger out to this lady tonight, right? And it's burger perfection. It's got cheese and all the other heart-attack inducing ingredients you can think of on it. It was a good looking burger. Not so much the Brad Pitt of burgers, but a more classy good looking, like George Clooney. Nevertheless it was attractive in a food-type-of-way.

I take this perfectly crafted burger out to this woman, so proud that I can serve to her ravenous hunger with the most delicately crafted meat patty, enveloped in a golden bun accompanied by all the classics; cheese, lettuce, kosher pickle slices, tomato, and grilled onions, all straight from the garden of God himself. So I mustered up the biggest smile I could. In slow motion, the tray lowered to the space in front of her that she had already prepared for this feast to begin.

I didn't even get the tray halfway down between the distance of where the tray was carried by my arm to the table before I heard her awful, grating voice exclaim,
I specifically asked for NO cheese. Take this away. I don't want cheese. Get it right next time.
 Ok. This is what bothers me. I was so excited to give this dumb lady this burger because I made sure everything about it was awesome. No where on the ticket did it say "no cheese". I went through every stinkin' ingredient to make sure the whole table got everything they asked for. It was even a little kid's birthday, and I was about to offer to make him an Oreo sundae just for being a cute kid. That's how nice I am. I am a fucking angel. But no, this little bitch had to ruin it. 

I get it. Some people don't dig cheese, or any dairy products for that matter. I know people who would blow if they had a sip of milk. But don't you agree that there are nicer ways to bring to my attention that there wasn't supposed to be cheese on your burger?

Here, allow me to offer some responses:
1. Oh, I'm sorry there wasn't supposed to be cheese on here!
2. Oh, hun, I asked for no cheese.. 
3. This looks like a great burger, but I asked for no cheese!
4. I'm sorry but I wasn't supposed to have cheese..

Obviously, there were other ways to approach this situation. I am not the bad guy. I was just trying to make your day by stuffing your face with a really tasty burger. But you had to be a bitch and go and ruin it, because apparently you have a problem with cheese, which so happens to be a main ingredient of a CHEESEburger. Idiot.

Rudeness is just inexcusable. Just because I am about 30 (probably 40 because rudeness adds about 5-10 years on your age) years younger than you, and not yet started in my professional life doesn't mean you have the right to take advantage of your "superiority" to me. It's people like you that push me harder to get the best out of this education so that the next time I have to deal with a person like you will be in an executive office telling you that your work isn't good enough for our company. And yes, I will have on a pencil skirt and 5 inch heels and that's when I'll tell you what's up, lady. A Smashburger uniform doesn't make me any lesser than you. At least my Smashburger uniform is giving me the chance to learn that people like you exist and that I'll be dealing with you for the rest of my life, but I can handle it with class and a little thing my generation likes to call "swagger". Thanks for the motivation for me to work harder and get somewhere so I don't have to be rude to a nice girl at a burger joint to feel better about myself one day.

Again, thank you, and I hope you enjoyed your cheese-less, boring burger.

Saturday, December 3, 2011


So we've all seen "Inception", right? It comes down to the idea that sometimes we can't find the line between our subconscious and reality. And maybe our subconscious is our reality, or maybe our reality is just our subconscious, and maybe I'm starting to get a massive migraine trying to figure this out. 

I guess what I'm trying to say in a philosophical way is that I woke up to an awful dream this morning. It was one of those dreams where you try and try to tell yourself, "This isn't real, don't stress, this isn't happening to you," but every single detail, down to the way your childhood bathroom was painted, is spot on. You look around and you can navigate yourself through your parents' house knowingly, and it is all painstakingly real. 

I don't understand why our brains do this to us. It's almost mean in a way. The subconscious is dangerous, and it knows it. It uses every detail we've ever acquired in our lives and sets up scenarios that seem as if they are more like memories that actually occurred. And in my case, my mother-effing subconscious went down deep into the secret parts of my brain that require passwords and official identification to enter and found my confidential folder of deepest fears and made them into a nice little dream; like a Saturday morning special gone wrong. 

You'd think in times of psychological suffering, through emotional pain, that your own brain would want to comfort you. You'd hope that it would do it's job to keep your mind strong so that you could continue to survive. Well my guess is that my subconscious is defective and I would end up going bat shit crazy if I ever had to survive with what it's giving me.

I'm trying to figure out if my dream was a warning for me or if it was a real look into the future, or if it was just something to get my day started off wrong. Maybe this was meant to be a sub-par day and my mind knew that and thought to itself, "Damn, it's December 3rd. Shelby isn't allowed to have a nice start to her day. Let's rile her up in her sleep so that she wakes up to her heart having a metabolic seizure and a feeling of discomfort that rivals even her most uncomfortable moments."

It's funny though, because since I've started writing this, I'm less and less bothered by the dream itself. As time moves on I'm realizing the details weren't so spot on after all. And that I don't really care anymore. Sometimes I feel like because what used to be my biggest fear came true, that I don't really have anything else to be afraid of anymore. Especially not some stupid dream from a defective subconscious that couldn't even get the shape of his head right...

Friday, December 2, 2011

I fear Christmas.. for one hairy green reason

Don’t get me wrong, Christmas is one of the happiest times of the year. Free presents, shit tons of food, and your whole family getting drunk on some fruity drink your mom makes; what could be better?

For me, the sight of lights going up, tacky red velvet ribbon and decorations involving an obese bearded pedophile involve feelings of intense terror.

Some people are lucky. They’re afraid of spiders or snakes, and occasionally you’ll find a nut-bag who gets a little tense around something really strange, like Styrofoam. But me, no. I had to have one bad experience as a child and suffer the consequences every holiday season for as long as I can remember.

The mother-fucking Grinch  

Ok, HONESTLY, who could love a face like that? Have you ever wondered why he lives by himself on a mountain? I know why! Because that is literally a face not even a mother could love. He looks like a walking, talking furry booger. And you people are all obsessed with him. I don’t understand. He wants to fucking steal Christmas! He wants to CREEP into your house, take all your possessions (Let’s face it—you know he’s going to take ALL the presents and whatever other valuable shit you have laying around. He has a deformed heart) and ruin the best holiday of the year. And you all revere him. To this day I don’t understand and I am highly upset.

Some of you might argue that he changes in the end. SO fucking what?! In the criminal justice system, this “thing” is a felon. Lock him up! He stole millions of dollars of those crack snorting Whos’ junk and he just gets away with it, because his heart “grows” (um, physically impossible) and he returns everything. So you’re going to tell me that if some 6 foot tall, hairy, green, wrinkled creature stole a bunch of your expensive stuff, all the while laughing in a creepy way that literally makes me want to pee myself, and upon seeing you were blatantly upset, returns it all, that you would just FORGIVE him?

Aw, hell no! I am willing to do what those dumb Whos should have done in the first place. Beat the crap out of that thing. That is, if I could even look into those jaundiced eyes long enough for me to initiate a fight.

What about the stuff you broke, you stupid Grinch? How are you going to replace the gifts you ruined? It’s not like there’s jobs available for fucking hairy green hermits. Unless you want to work at a car wash and be attached to the device that scrubs the cars off you’re out of luck. You ruined Christmas.

Don’t even get me started on the baby Grinch either. You think he’s cute, huh? When’s the last time you saw a baby completely bite through a ceramic plate? You ever go up to a baby and offer it a bowl or a mug for a snack? NO. You don’t. That’s fucked up. Obviously if its teeth and jaw were that strong at such a young age, he could bite through bones and probably kill me. And you know I’d be the first target because I love Christmas and if my nose was about 5 times bigger I would look just like Cindy Lou Who.

I would give anything to just be afraid of spiders.

To the random customer tonight: You may have changed my life

I knocked a stack of cups over and clumsily said, “Oh, it has been a long day.”

“Has it?” he said, not in a polite oh-I-should-respond way, but in a caring and thoughtful way. The same way a mother would become immediately worried at the sight of her sick child and ask, “Let me feel your forehead, honey. Are you feverish?”

It wasn’t a fever that was plaguing me, but I still felt his words reach out to my forehead, just to check.
“I’ve been here since 6, and I had a full day of class starting at 8 am,” I said with a smile.
“Wow, I couldn’t do that!” He said and his eyes lit up. I could see his college days burst through the expression on his face, and I knew he had once been a working student too. “You are doing a great job.”

“Thank you,” I said and beamed. It always means a lot when one of the petty adults that demands me to serve them food realizes that I have a lot more on my plate than they do on their 15 inch metal Smashburger tray.

He looked at me again, and as if he heard my heart screaming out, he consoled it.
“Just remember to be patient with yourself. Life isn’t just here,” he pointed to his left, “and here,” and pointed to his right. “It’s here,” and he made mountains and valleys and swirled his hand in every which direction. “Don’t forget there’s a lot of living going on around you. Patience. Forgiveness. And don’t be too hard on yourself,” he said.

“It’s all right there baby,” he said and pointed to his heart. “I’m so proud of you.”

There was so many things I wanted to say. I wanted to ask how he knew.. How he knew exactly what to say to lift a burden that rested on my soul. I wanted to ask, who sent you? Did God himself whisper in your ear? Did you get some kind of email from my guardian angel, setting up this meeting? Or was it simply just fate?

The only words I could muster up out of my awakened soul were a slow and metered, “Thank you, thank you so much,” but I know he could see every word I wanted to say in my expression. The lines on my face were shouting, “I’m grateful for your words!” The wetness in my eyes was nodding its head graciously and my smile was exclaiming, “You have no idea what your words mean to me!”
No matter what it was, fate, a sign, or an angel looking out for me, sir, my heart is a little less broken and I have your kind words to thank.