Monday, October 3, 2011

Happy Take Your Clothes Off Day

As the cotton cobwebs and ironically happy ghosts begin to spring up among the residential neighborhoods surrounding my religious university in my happy, little town, students' spidey senses are tingling: Hallow's Eve is but just around the corner!

Particularly from the female population, "What are you going to be for Halloween?" Is now the new standard question you ask your gal friends/classmates/acquaintances/girl(s)-randomly-in-your-dorm-room.

I've begun to explore the intention behind the question. Are you all being polite and making conversation with what is seasonally at hand? Are you trying to gain an edge on what everyone else is being so you can decide juuust before the holiday in order to have the BEST COSTUMER EVER?! OR. Are you gauging your female counterpart's answer on the slutty meter? For me, that's been a point of interest as of late: this whole promiscuous costume ritual that begins somewhere between being awkward in high school and masking that awkward with exposed flesh in college.

Back in High School (look at me I'm so old) I always made a point to make some sort of ironic statement come Halloween time because that was the kind of pretentious radical I was. My first Halloween with cancer as a sophomore I was Goldilocks....get it?? BECAUSE I WAS BALD. Jesus I crack myself up. Come junior year, I was just barely declared 'on the road to recovery' and dressed as a doctor. Good one, high school Me.

I recall even back then girls used the holiday as an excuse to show a little skin; as Mean Girls so beautifully lays out plain an' simple.

I used to be so adamantly against the assumed fleshy shit-show come every October but I've recently thought about the holiday a bit more in-depth.

Is dressing scantily for a holiday not what's been shoved down our throats as females since we were but wee lasses? Look what happened to Cady! She wore a really well thought out, modest costume and she was considered the #uglygirlattheball. I'm not saying that whatever the media tells us is absolutely valid, but it gives a pretty hearty excuse as to why young women dress the way they do on Halloween. I think the outfits of choice are a statement of American culture. This is just what we do; this is our ritual once we come of age (hopefully).

And I full-heartedly believe that intention is everything. Girls are taught that if they put on a low-cut blouse they're a slut. Well. If a girl puts on a low-cut blouse with the intention of being looked at like a sex symbol and hoping for 0 eye-contact from the men in the room, then yeah maybe that statement holds true. But if a lady wears a dress that shows a little curvage with the intention of celebrating her femininity then YOU GO OUT THERE AND CELEBRATE!

 Yeah, a good amount of my wardrobe could be mistaken for little boy clothing, and yeah I'm super into the whole baggy trend, but occasionally (upon interacting with larger masses of college students in say a "recreational setting") I'll swap my baggy shirt for a little dress or torn "boyfriend-styled" jeans for a little skirt so I can say: BAM! I'm not just moderately quirky and happen to be well spoken and read-I can be cute too sometimes! I get it ladies, I get it.

So attention females of America! I was wrong in being a judgmental beezy every Halloween and I ha-pologize. Go into that Halloween party and you show that skin! But show yo goodies knowing that you are a smart, talented, special, snowflake of a girl who deserves respect despite the mouse ears.  

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

3rd Grade Abduction

Being at an internship where a good majority of the work I produce is dependent on my creativity level for the day, my boss, fellow intern and I always have wonderful, thought-proviking conversations.  We speak about anything from current events to our favorite cult films (The Room, anyone?) to politics to (a big one as of late) our childhoods.

Thinking back to my younger days now at the age of adulthood I realize just how friggen' weird I was as a kid- straight up obscure. But then I think, maybe we all start out super strange and get it out of our systems prior to actually needing to function in our higher education and work systems...well most of us do anyway. So my childhood weird isn't really bizarre at all, it's simply unique to me and made me into the neat, little, peculiar adult package I am today.

I have one particular incident that lasted the duration of my grammar school 3rd grade that I believe takes the cake for my abnormal childhood behavior.

It started off as a simple fib to my best friend at the time: I was actually the descendant of a royal alien family and was sent down to Earth to check the place out because I was the princess of my planet and that's just what needed to happen at that time. Surprise! I'm not quite sure at which point my pal became my accomplice but she just did. It was eventually assumed that we were both actually aliens and had similar missions. No wonder we were bffs. I still wonder if she knew in her 3rd grade mind that I was pretending and wanted to play along and we just kind of had this unspoken agreement that for now this was real life and we could hoot and holler about it when we were old and boring or if she actually thought I was a princess and wanted to get on my good side so I wouldn't smite her with my alien powers. Who knows.

So this little role playing game we had taken a liking to soon grew into a venture that included all of our 3rd grade class. Yup, all of 3rd grade knew my bud and I were aliens- we had them eating out of the palms of our alien tentacle hands.

I went so far as to come up with this little trick of rubbing an especially lead-y pencil all over the under-side of my desk then would proceed to rub my arms along the then pencil-stricken desk bottom. The result would leave me with shiny, silver skin condition-y looking arms.

Gasp! Oh dear me there must be a glitch in my human form device!! I'm morphing back into my alien form!!!!
Oh excuse me Mrs. Francisco, may I please use the restroom facilities?? It's urgent.

Cue me running out of the classroom half-heartedly trying to cover my hideous alien arms and sniffling back a few hurriedly whipped up tears to show just how distraught my situation was.

The classroom would break out into whispers:

Shmmmhhmmmshhh thatsthealiengirl shmmsh hushhhh she'sturningbacktohertrueform shmmhhh


Another trick up the ol' sleeve I had involved a wee blue alien stuffed animal dubbed Comet that my father had won for me at the local arcade.  I somehow figured out how to pass off make-shift magic tricks as alien magic- making Comet disappear (usually just under my armpit hidden in my shirt sleeve). So everyone knew Comet as my little alien friend from home that was paralyzed but that I cared very much about and that I would periodically send back to our home planet for check-ups (poor, ill thing).

Between my human form transmitter acting up and my little friend being able to disappear whenever I wanted, the 3rd grade was convinced of my alien status. I eventually pushed the limit wondering how far I could take this whole alien royalty thang.  I told every friend I had- including my band mates (my fellow Glitter Girls) needless to say we scored some major song writing inspiration from my adventures abroad the solar systems. Until one day I told the wrong friend.  I told one of my rather religious friends who happened to be uber close with her earthling mom. She told her mom and the mom got all concerned that I was messing with the devil. Oh come now party poop mom, let me have my fun. But my fun was not had and my alien escapade was no more.  Summer between 3rd and 4rth grade came and people either forgot that I was an alien or all of them gained a hand-full of collective brain cells and realized that their classmate was actually not from another planet. Whichever one no one ever asked me about it so who knows. I WAS YOUNG AND IN THIRD GRADE- I WAS RECKLESS.

I learned a lot about acting, specifically character development, that year. I know, I'm just as shocked as you that I didn't turn out to be a pathological liar or that weird 20-year-old who still has imaginary friends, but here I am just moderately quirky- nothing more.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Ugly Love and Other Drugs

My boyfriend (bless his soul) and I have a particular method for watching new movies.  I have some "issues" with seeing medical images on the big screen, so prior to going to the movies, my darling boy will google an in-depth synopsis of the proposed film in order to check out if there are any lurking hospital scenes or surprise Oh-hey-my-dad-dies-of-cancer surprise endings.  No one wants to have to waste an ungodly amount of $10 ($12 if 3-D) by walking out of a theatre early. 

Anywho, now that I've put the prologue aside, I so desperately wanted to see "Love And Other Drugs" due to my great admiration of Miss Hathaway- what a gem she is! Well, the pre-movie viewing process was performed and dang-nabit Anne's character has Parkinson's.  So we did not see it, I was heart broken, blah blah. 

WELL. A few months later when the film had gone to Redbox, a dear friend informed me that the "doctor scenes" were very minimal and that I could absolutely watch the film worry-free. And watch I did.

Of course Anne's performance was beautiful, I believed her throughout the entire duration of the 113 minutes. Though, I regret to inform that I cannot give one smidge of feedback on Jake Gyllenhaal's character due to my heavy concentration on Anne.

No, there were not any horrible hospital scenes, but the concept of the film was horrifyingly saddening. 
I despise the thought of sick people coming off as disgusting.  You know what really bothers me even more? Is that Anne Hathaway's character is beautiful.  She is such a pretty lady with such an honest spirit, and even then it is challenging for her to find someone out of the 6.92 billion people inhabiting this  Earth because of the huge "SICK GIRL" banner slapped across her forehead.

Due to my illness in the good ol' days of adolescence my supposed "blossoming bod" was undergoing the exact opposite of natural teenage growth: deterioration. I wasn't exactly the prettiest girl at the ball.  With this in mind, my 14-year-old self thought it best  to shut down ALL interest in the opposite sex.  I was a rational teenager and knew that people my age had hormones just a-ragen' and that I was not one to lust for.


My point is, that if a pretty sick girl has trouble finding a soul-mate, where is the hope for the sick people who lose their more appealing features due to disease? Obviously I know that (cliché alert heed with caution) beauty is literally skin deep, I know that the other cancer patients I have encountered also know this.  But I fear that until you experience your physical body slipping away from you, no one will quite fully grasp the unimportance of an outer-body. 

Maybe all of us sickies and former sickies will just marry each other and live in our own non-media driven society of beauty.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Hipsta' Ramen

(Now available at Urban Outfitters)

Thank gawd, a suitable person can now buy one package of good 'ol Ramen noodles (regularly $1 for six) with some profanity slapped on the packaging and 'edgy' cooking directions for $5.00 $1.99. 
I thought the day would never come.

Now You Gone An Done Made Me Nostalgic

Referring to my "5 Things To Do This Summer" Post, thinking of being in Paris made me miss the city TERRIBLY.  My father took me after I graduated high school as a congratulatory present and we just tore up that town!

So in somber remembrance here are some tid-bits from the trip:

A beautiful Frenchie giving me free CDs! I don't care what anybody says about the French, they are a lovely group of people.

Father looking dapper.

All this man wanted in life was to play his accordion on that train forever. I've never seen such happiness.


Thursday, May 19, 2011

Hopped On And Felt The Summertime

Lets just sit back for a second and think about the supposed impending months of sunshine (according to the view from my window...tut-tut, looks like rain).  The lack of class and classmates, the probable summer job, and (for the unfortunate handful) the move back in with the rents. Now for the good stuff: the evenings dedicated to sunset-strolling, sun dresses with your flower of choice slapped h'all up on em', and sugar-dunked strawberries.

So with my new internship (that makes me way too exceedingly happy to wake up to every morning), my newly attained online newspaper writing gig, and being in the lovely Southern California all summer long, I figured I should map out some off-time musts to do this summer.

Of course there are always the typicals: catching up on some good literate, reading the plays for the up-coming audition season, watching television shows I've missed during the year full seasons at a time, aaand go to the pool and eat a lot (dur).

But I digress. This summer, I, Kelsey Jean, will complete these five items, and I invite you to join me.

1) Re-visit one of my favorite locations, The Getty.  Every time I frequent this lovely institution I walk away with a better understanding of art and its history, like Monet himself is whispering sweet nothings of the late 1800s into my ear. Plus, I have never been in the summertime.  Art looks and feels better when I'm sweat stricken and in a pretty dress, brings me back to my elementary field-trip days when we were told to dress up when visiting a museum.  My favorite "special" dress was navy and velvet...field-trips took place in do the math.  I was a sweaty little girl come art museum day.

2) Go to Santa Barbara Art Sunday! I think the last time I had the pleasure of strolling the shores while delighting my eyes to some beautiful art treats while munching on an ice-cream cone was LAST summer. Far too long. I love galleries and outdoor displays, it's like a free museum and you get to learn about all of the up-and-coming artists in your area.

3) Go Mansion Huntin'.

 Hah, I kid you.  No, i am not looking for a mansion to inhabit, but I do looove to look.  I'd say some good architecture and radically antique or radically modern furniture can fully brighten my day alone (hey, art is art is art). So I would like to drive to an embarrassingly wealthy neighborhood (perhaps Malibu?) and just poke around, see how the fabulous live.  If there's an open house- even better! Better pack my heels...

4) This next activity may seem strikingly out of left field (is that how that saying goes? Why is left field so rare?) but here is my stab at attempting to be a little more active...or at least move more.
Play soccer in the park! Normally this is so not my cup of tea, I hung up my cleats along with the ol' nick-name "crazy legs," right after I was diagnosed.  It just never appealed to me after that.  However, this past school year I have played a few casual games of 'futball' in my school park and they were shockingly entertaining! I was thoroughly exhausted, but the interaction between everyone, the camaraderie of the two teams, it was just too fun! The whole thing is simple to organize: send out a mass text, slap down a few backpacks as goals, grab a ball, and you're good to go!

5) I'm going to wake up one morning and decide to board a plane to Europe. From there I will backpack from London to Paris to Amsterdam and back. Yup, that's it. If you haven't caught on yet I am obviously not that cool. But do you know who is? My boyfriend, that's who.  Yes this terribly spontaneous soul woke up one morning and decided he needed to see Europe at this time in his life.  A week later a ticket was purchased and he leaves at the end of the month. I'm terribly jealous but bubbling over with excitement for him as well.  Paris is the city for me, smelling of rain and cigarettes and reeking of culture, it's everything I could ever want in a location.  I predict he'll find Amsterdam quite amusing.

Happy Summer,
Kelsey Jean

Monday, May 9, 2011

So... How Do I Look?

This life is so, so surprising.  As of late, I have felt like someone or something of higher importance than myself has felt the need to randomly push me from my layout-pool-chair-of-teenagedom into the deep-end-of-adulthood.  And guess what? The water's foine.  I have successfully managed 19 credits of college education, professionally maintained an internship, taken part in various dramatic pieces of art on campus, and had one hoot of a time socially, all in this past spring semester!

It is currently finals week and I can already smell the sunscreen and bb q charcoal just beckoning me towards a summertime of dipping in a (non metaphorical) pool.

Well today I received the pleasant news of further summer plans.  I will be interning with a new company doing some blogging and social networking! YES. Oh the learning possibilities.  Because of this news, because I was reminded of how fortunate I am that I will [hopefully] someday get to write as a means of occupation, I am here at my laptop blogging as a means of celebration.

And today I will celebrate with something I have been wanting to write about since my existence as a "blogger." Ready ladies (and Jacob)...Fashion!

Now, before you go and get your hopes up, no, I am not going to regurgitate "fashion tips" from Vogue or Seventeen. I will not tell you "what's hot now" or tell you what your "color" is.

I think the Best thing about fashion is that it is an utter reflection of the person wearing the clothes.  Again with the human canvas theory- a body is a canvas.  What a person puts on said canvas should be a statement about the truth of the person.

For this reason, no one should ever feel the need to ask a friend, "Does this look good/hot/trampy/horrendous/dear-god-take-it-off-bad on me?"

If you feel a piece of clothing is beautiful, just a work of art by itself, then WEAR IT! Put things on your body that make YOU feel pretty and YOU feel sexy and YOU feel radiant! 

Art is composed to be judged- that's just part of the process. As Markus has stated, every person has a right to an opinion about art- be it good or bad.  If everyone liked the dress you wore to Formal then it's not art.

Fashion is a personal opinion.  Rock what says the most about who you are as a person, not a brand an advertisement says looks fabulous on you.

Fashionably, Originally,

Kelsey Jean