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Weddings and Warlocks

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Before you read any further, you should know that there are two problems with the title of this post.

The first is that there is only wedding, so the plural of wedding was a misnomer.

And the second is that there is actually no mention of warlocks in any sentences in this post.

Except in the one that you just read.

I just wanted some alliteration and that's what came to mind.

Now that we've cleared that up, let's celebrate that fact that my dear little brother (known by his close friends as Yogurt, and by close friends, I mean just me) got MARRIED last week in Portland.

I thought I'd take this momentous occasion to celebrate what a great individual Logan is by sharing a few things Logan has taught me over the years.

1. The mundane can be beautiful. 

Logan is a master of creativity. He turns the normal into the beautiful and the boring into an adventure. I loved going on runs with Logan in high school because he took running as an opportunity to explore this grand world, whethe…

Two Homes and Still Drifting

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I came back to Utah last week. 

Utah that felt like a foreign land in 2011 when I moved out here as a timid and innocent college freshman.
Utah that felt like home when I drove away in 2017 after years of running in the mountain foothills, working closely with BYU professors on campus, and going on adventures with friends. 


And coming back actually felt like coming home despite having moved away a year ago.


I mean, I drove down to Utah Valley Sunday morning for a dear friend's farewell and was instantly overwhelmed with love for the friends who were also there. It felt like a glorious homecoming to the people who helped me learn to call Provo my home and helped me find a better, more outgoing and more authentic version of myself.


And come to think of it, maybe it's not just the magical, green mountains that whisper home.



It's the people who made this home. 


These feelings of Heimat and belonging are actually a little bit paradoxical because I just left a place that feels like hom…

Year One Done

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Year 1 of grad school is done. 

(okay, minus one presentation and a couple hours of paper revisions).

Years 2-5/6/hopefully-not-longer-than-that are up and coming.

It feels soooooo good to have a year behind me.
A year of knowing what grad school is like and a year of knowledge in a field I'm theoretically going to spend the rest of my working years discovering.


This is how it looked.


first semester: 
I sat in classes writing down words I didn't understand.
And looking up those words.
And still not completely understanding.
But laughing with everyone else all the same when someone would make a comment like "Wow, that's so Hegelian!"
Which happened at least once a week.

Here are some other expressions you might have missed while you were busy studying history as an undergrad but can throw into your speech to sound more intelligent:

metaphysical phenomonologyaesthetic consciousnesshermeneuticsphilologyfragmentationcoherencesontologicalmillieucogitodiegetic integrityparanoiac 

Th…

Marriage Isn't a Trophy

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To my unmarried friends. 

Especially those of you who are LDS.  Because #mormonculture.
And to my married friends who love their unmarried friends. #pleasedontbedeadtome
I've been thinking some thoughts about how we talk about marriage and wanted to share some insights.
First, I'm going to let you in on a secret:  I thought I would be married by age 25.  Heck, if we're completely honest, I thought I would have gotten married within a year of coming home from my mission, which would have been by age 22.  Because as a teenager, most all of my LDS female leaders and role models had gotten married in their late-teens or early 20s. They talked about getting married like it was the easiest thing. 
"Well he came home from his mission and thought I was cute and I thought he was cute so we decided to get married!"
It hasn't been that easy for me.
I'm 25 and not married. 
This is okay.
This doesn't make me less talented, desirable, successful, or beautiful as a human being. 

So what is it you do again?

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Random Human: "So what is it you do again? Just keep learning German?"
Me: "No, I already speak German. It's more like a study and analysis of LITERATUREPOLITICSPHILOSOPHYHISTORYCULTURETHEORY from the German-speaking peoples of this lovely world."
Random Human: "....so what is it you do again?"
Me: "I read a million books and write things. Oh and I make German puns with no one's business."

Grad school is a strange place (potentially located in the fourth dimension) and I've come to realize that since I didn't actually know what Germanic Studies would entail when I applied to programs (I know, I'm the worst. Insert public derision by other academics here), most normal people probably don't know what the field "Germanic Studies" entails.

Surprise: it's lots of things.

The most general of categories are either literature/culture and linguistics within a language/area field.

And I'm definitely not a linguistics gur…

When Life Gives You Too Many Lemons

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Once upon a time, a friend who loves puns as much as I do (I know, you didn't know this person existed) asked if I wanted to put on signs that said "LIFE" and hand out lemons and limes on BYU's campus.

This was after I said we should catch ducks and go give "INTRODUCKTIONS" to strangers, so since clearly his plan violated fewer animal rights, we went with that one.

For the most part, it was a great success and we felt good about life and people giggled and asked if they could take pictures of us and yeah basically this is something that is only acceptable on a college campus or in a Buzzfeed article.

But here's the thing: people were delighted to receive citrusy fruits from us only because we didn't pelt them with 487 lemons and scream "BET YOU CAN'T MAKE THAT MUCH LEMONADE!!"

Okay, that was too broad of statement. They were enchanted with our practical application of word play AND we caused them no harm by throwing excess produce at them.