28 Random Personal Questions

Death-defying feats, karate, and dance! Get to know me by watching me answer 28 random questions.

Britta Bohler’s youtube channel

Lilykoi Hawaii’s youtube channel

The Questions:
1. How old is your oldest living relative?
2. As an adult, have you ever been in a fight?
3. Have you ever been slapped in public?
4. What’s the largest non-human animal you’ve seen in person?
5. Have you ever had serious surgery?
6. If you could only compare the novels of Cormac McCarthy to one kind of garbage, what kind would it be?
7. Who’d be your dream-casting for Superman?
8. What’s the greatest amount of physical pain you’ve ever been in?
9. Do you believe in a god or gods?
10. Have you ever been good-and-properly drunk?
11. To the best of your knowledge, what’s the closest you’ve ever come to death?
12. Which Star Trek character would the person who knows you best compare you to?
13. Have you ever had your life radically changed by a book?
14. Is there a universally-beloved classic you simply don’t like?
15. What is your dream profession?
16. Is there an entire genre of reading you’re bugged you haven’t fully explored?
17. When you people-watch, what’s the main thing you notice?
18. Barring the unforeseeable, what’s the most likely way you’ll die?
19. Have you visited any of the world’s wonders, ancient or modern?
20. What are your main superpowers?
21. Have you ever met any famous people?
22. Have you ever slept out of doors?
23. Would you make a good parent? Or, if you’re already a parent, how much do your children hate you?
24. New Kids on the Block or the Backstreet Boys?
25. Have you ever been on-stage in front of an audience?
26. At the moment, what’s your favorite non-BookTube YouTube channel?
27. Have you ever passed out while sober?
28. How strong are you? Physically? Intellectually? Emotionally?

Who Moved My Grief?

I have been in a dark place, lately.  I didn’t realize the extent of it until I started to climb out of it.  Most of the time, I thought I was just tired.  It wasn’t exhaustion.  It was depression.

The other day, I saw that Elizabeth Gilbert put up a post about grief.

Her message was that when grief moves through us, we must find ways to help it keep moving.  If it gets stuck, we will sink and sink and sink.  That is exactly how I felt.  It was like my every joint had a weight tied to it.  I wish I meant that figuratively.  It was a struggle to move.  I thought I needed time, but I needed a way to move it through.  The grief piled up and it only got worse.

My grief isn’t just about Zophia.  Zophia’s passing was a trigger for past loss and anticipated future loss.  My mom passed away about a year and a half ago.  That pain is moving through me like a block of cement, as in, it hasn’t been.  It has just been sitting there, weighing me down.

Yesterday, we went to the beach.  For me, it was urgent care.  I don’t know if it is a human thing or just a me thing, but I heal when I get into the ocean.  It didn’t solve every issue, but it lifted me up enough that I could start lifting myself up again.  Before yesterday, there was no chance.  I struggled just to get to the ocean because I was so low.

Last week, my cousin did a Tarot reading on me, which turned out to be surprisingly accurate.  I only expected it to be a fun thing to do, but in the end, I was disturbed by how vulnerable it made me feel.  We knew each other as kids, but we don’t know each other as adults.  We took very different life trajectories and we’re both shy and private people, so it’s no big surprise that we don’t know each other well.  I wanted her to know that she was doing a good job, so I told her that she was right on.  Then, my emotional life was laid out right in front of her, which made me feel over-exposed.

Despite this depressing sounding blog entry, I am truly feeling better than before.

A couple of days ago, Adam and I wandered around the city at night.  This is partly because I could not get moving before the sun went down and partly because it was too hot to go out during the day, anyway.  We happened upon the Tokyo Metropolitan Building.  It’s a building where anyone can go up to the top and look at for free.  We didn’t realize that it would be open at 9:30PM, but it was, so we went up and looked at Tokyo at night from the 45th floor.

I didn’t think much of it at the time, but that was because I was in such a place that I couldn’t appreciate much of anything.  Now that I’m feeling a bit better I can appreciate it.

There are so many reasons that I can say that I have a really good life.

Anyway, for now, I just want to do a meme.  So here it is:

What do you think of when you think of Australia? I wish I knew more about it.  I have a few friends/acquaintances from there.  They are about as diverse as Americans.  It seems like an exotic and hot place.  Another friend of mine has a business selling kangaroo meat in Japan and now it’s hard to think about Australia without remembering that.

Birthstone?  My birthday is in July, so my birthstone is ruby.  The only ruby thing I own is a ruby and diamond necklace given to me by an ex.  I’ve always had the kind of lifestyle that meant that it was a very bad idea for me to wear fine or expensive jewelry unless I wanted it broken or lost.

Favorite pair of shoes you wear all the time?  My walking shoes are a pair of blue and white sneakers.  I wear minimalist running shoes for running.  I grew up barefoot in Southern California, so wearing shoes at all feels like an imposition.  That is why I practice things like yoga, karate, and dance.

When is the last time you went to the mall?  A couple of weeks ago, we went to a mall that has a place that sells vegan soft serve.  I buy almost everything online.

Do you wash your car or let the car wash do it?  I don’t own a car.  When I did own a car, I never washed it myself.  I went to the car wash occasionally, but not often enough.  I begrudge myself simple pleasures because they feel too indulgent and then I wonder why I am so sad.

Five ways to win your heart:
1. Show me that you’re paying attention
2. Show me that you care
3. Show me that you’re trying

That’s it, I only have three

4. Ok, give me a vegan dessert.  I mean, come on, who doesn’t like dessert?

Have you met anyone famous?  My memory is really bad for this kind of stuff.  Plus, I watch the same 3 TV shows and 5 movies over and over again and I rarely even do that.  Half of them are starring people who aren’t even alive anymore.  So, I could be meeting famous people every day and never know it.  However, I can remember meeting Barry Williams (Greg Brady) when I was a Freshman in college and Elizabeth Gilbert before she was hugely famous (my one big fangirl moment).

Do you use cookbooks or do you try to find recipes online?  Both, I suppose, but I don’t do either of those things much.  I’m a competent enough cook and other people’s recipes often don’t suit my tastes.

I push you into a room and lock the door. I leave you there for 6 hours. The walls are chalkboards and in the middle of the room, there is a box of colored chalk. What will be written/drawn on the walls when I let you out?  Probably, “I need to pee,” several hundred times because, seriously?  Six hours?  I’m sure that I would write a bunch of random stuff and erase it and then maybe practice my kanji.

What is the best thing about a Barbie doll?  I don’t know, I’ve never owned one.

Gilmore Girls and Classism

This morning, I was getting my morning Gilmore Girls fix, as one does, and it was the episode where they first visit the Yale campus.  While I have never been to the Yale campus, I used to live on the East Coast where you can barely walk a block without tripping over an Ivy League college.

Also, one of my favorite memories of Philadelphia is strolling along the Schuylkill River watching the crew teams from various local universities practice after walking past the university boathouses that look like they have been there for a very long time.  They aren’t all Ivy League schools, of course, but the whole atmosphere has an ivy scent to it.

So, watching that episode made me nostalgic and homesick.  It wasn’t about Yale, specifically, like I said, I’ve never been there.  It was about seeing the big, heavy buildings (or facsimiles) and the sense of tradition and grandeur.  The city of Philadelphia is dripping with that kind of stuff and it’s all up and down the East Coast.

I know that, ideally, it represents cultural identity, the history of human knowledge, and a view towards human expansion, but it is also about keeping the establishment established.  It’s about keeping outdated ideas in circulation and maintaining classism.

Yes, the existence of classism makes me angry, but there is still a small part of me that is jealous.  There’s an even smaller part of me that believes that I belong there.  We all do it, of course.  History was recorded by the aristocracy and that makes us identify with them.  They write themselves as the heroes of history and it is only natural that we identify with the heroes of any story.  The belief that classism will ever favor us, simply because we identify with the rich, is ridiculous.

Anyway, I went to college in the Midwest, but I lived in Philadelphia for 13 years, which is the longest I’ve ever lived anywhere, so it still feels like home.  Whenever I am reminded of those things, I am reminded of Philadelphia.

It also kind of reminds me how this white Australian guy once asked me in English to explain to him why I believed European culture has influenced most of the world.

Moving on.  This week, I am resting, and I’m doing it for real this time.  I’m not just working less.  I’m thinking less.

During times when I would have normally listened to audiobooks (doing housework, going for walks, etc.) I am choosing either music or silence.  I desperately need to let my brain to relax.

For the past several months, whenever I wasn’t forcing myself to create content, I was force feeding myself content.  There were many times when I enjoyed myself.  There were also many times when I would have rather rested but didn’t.

Not surprisingly, I mentally crashed and burned.  I’m still a burning wreckage, but I’m letting the flames eat it all up.

Right now, I feel like I need to apologize for how little I actually accomplished, despite the soul-crushing effort I’ve been putting into content creation.

My next step is rebuilding.  For me, this is to continue my journey towards self-acceptance or at least to reach some state that is not self-loathing.  This is what I need.

Lastly, my cousin appears to be starting a tarot reading business?  I’m not sure.  All I know is that she was offering free readings (to build her practice) and I jumped on it.

I’m not one to turn down a free psychic anything, so, at first, I didn’t think much about it.  However, doing something like this has brought up a lot of thoughts and feelings around my Reiki practice.  That small shift in focus seems to have changed things for me.

Of course, I do energy work every day, but I’ve been approaching it like another task to get done.  Yoga is like that, too.  Sometimes, I just go through the motions.  Sometimes, I put my attention on it and intention behind it and that is when it is most rewarding.  Today, I did yoga.  I was more focused, and therefore, it was more rewarding.  Or maybe I feel like it was more rewarding because I have been letting my brain rest more.

The funny thing is, I asked my cousin to do a reading on my career and even before she has done the reading, I feel like I’m already getting answers.