Category Archives: THE INSPIRED

Permanence

By Kaitlin Perry

Yesterday, I played housewife. This morning, a 23-year-old man was stabbed mere feet away from my humble abode in the midst of a home invasion (he was the intruder). This afternoon, I slept ‘till 1:30 and watched the new CBS sitcom 2 Broke Girls after I dragged myself downstairs and made some too-sweet coffee. What do these have to do with each other? They are prime examples of how quickly the circumstances in which you live your life can change, and thus I have been inspired to sprinkle words around yet again.

Though I ALWAYS played house when I was little, I never really saw myself as the “housewife” type. But then I moved in with my boyfriend, and we started cooking together and doing laundry together. But, the weirdest part about it? I loved doing it. I loved reorganizing the cupboard under the kitchen sink. I loved giving our kids – I mean…cats – a bath when I got home from work. I loved separating our clothes after I took them out of the dryer. I loved putting all of my boyfriend’s work in one neat pile by the couch. I loved getting into bed with him after we had finished tiring our brains out via books and the Internet. I loved it all, and it has become quite clear to me that life is most enjoyable at its simplest, cleanest and most organized.

But then I woke up to a phone call from him telling me that there was crime tape blocking off the street we live on. A quick Google search informed me of the botched home invasion attempt, and the warm, fuzzy feelings I had cultivated over the night were gone, replaced with feelings of disgust, confusion and sadness. The young man was reportedly trying to rob his friends’ home, in which they grew marijuana, but was stabbed as a result of what I assume was a means of self-defense. The image in my mind is grisly and disturbing, and the yellow crime scene tape makes me uneasy.

These types of occurrences make me wonder what it is in people’s heads that makes their lives simpler and more livable than others. Why can’t people keep to themselves and be happy with what they have? Lord knows I am often not as grateful as I should be for my closet exploding with clothes, my fancy laptop or my cell phone. I always want more, but I use honest means to get what I want. For that young man to be willing to risk his life over weed, or money, whichever it was that he was trying to rob the house of, must mean something beyond my realm of knowledge or understanding. I could never fathom breaking into the home of someone I knew, let a lone a stranger, just to satisfy my own need to have more. It simply baffles me that some people are able to rationalize that kind of behavior. It’s something I hate trying to think about, which is why I forced myself to go back to sleep after I read everything I could about the event.

Waking up at 1:30 p.m. without cable is always a bit daunting. Having to come up with something to do besides repinning a bunch of stuff on Pinterest is way more difficult than I thought it would ever be. Lucky for me all of the new fall shows are streaming online, so I watched 2 Broke Girls, starring Kat Dennings (who bothers me immeasurably) while eating steel-cut oats and drinking that aforementioned coffee. Surprisingly, I really enjoyed it. It was extremely hip (Peter Bjorn & John = theme song, Arcade Fire + Coldplay = first official music references) and perfectly witty. Plus, I’m about to become a real-life waitress and it was comforting to see Dennings confront her asshole customers in the opening scene. Hopefully some of my future customers will have seen this premiere and learned the proper way to treat the person giving them their food. Nevertheless, I was impressed and will be watching the show on CBS.com every week, along with New Girl and Up All Night. It appears that I’ve graduated just in time to waste my nights away watching half-hour-long comedies as opposed to doing homework. I have yet to learn which activity teaches me more.

I have also developed a strange fascination with leopard print everything.

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Enter the Inspired

By Kaitlin Perry

I failed, and I’ll be the first to admit it.

I expected me, of all people, to step off of my college grounds right into an entry-level position at a magazine, newspaper or other artistic corporate office. But, nope. I’m still an itty bitty hostess at a super shitty restaurant, short a raise and a timely promotion to, gasp! server.

Many tell me this is normal and not to be so hard on myself. That I’ve only been a college grad for three months and I just need to keep looking for something every so often. Others tell me I lost my sass and need to work harder when it comes to the actual job hunt (i.e. walking into the offices and asking to speak to the HR people). But what do I tell myself?

I tell myself, on a good day, that this was meant to be, that the reason I’m technically unemployed is because I deserved a break this summer and, now that it’s September, a job will find me when it’s ready. On a bad day I tell myself that I truly did fail myself and my family, my teachers and friends, because I didn’t get an internship and I didn’t make the right kind of connections in college. I tell myself that I let myself get weak and that I’m forever destined to be penniless and destitute. I might as well allow myself to become that cat lady everyone keeps saying I already am.

But today I’ve decided to shut up (after the above rant, of course), because I’ve finally been inspired by what I like to call the Early Twenties Crisis, which primarily concerns itself with the meaning of existence and the importance of money. My summer has essentially been an extended version of this crisis, with panic attacks and complete breakdowns that occur every couple of weeks, and, frankly, it blows. I wish I could have been 100 percent happy and satisfied solely with the fact that I actually graduated from a four-year private university, and on time at that. I wish I could have listened to my mom and written a novel (she’s positive that’s why I don’t have a job to occupy all of my time). But mostly, I wish I could have been more respectful and considerate of the situations of those around me, who are not as lucky as I am.

I feel like I was born to be a student. School has always been easy for me because I love doing research, I love writing and I love making to-do lists. School gave me the opportunity to do all three of those things, and for that I miss it dearly. Now that I don’t have school I haven’t used my planner in months and I feel like I have nothing substantial to research, and no real purpose. The easy solution? Grad school, duh. The big problem? Funds.

I feel as though I’m slowly sinking into a dark, barren place full of broken hopes and dreams.

Or should I say, felt.

When Facebook-chatting with a dear (and much-missed) friend about my post-grad “life” a few days after I wrote everything up to this point, I expressed to him how little purpose I thought I had now that I didn’t have school to hold me up and give me responsibility and attainable goals.

“No no no, now you have more purpose,” he wrote.
“I mean, yes,” I wrote back, “as in I have more time to define my purpose. But I have no idea what that is.”

And then he sent me, through the wires and waves (yes, that’s a Rilo Kiley song) of the internet, the most powerful, thought provoking, challenging and honest words anyone has ever said to me about my new life as a college graduate:

“Your purpose is you.”

Whether or not he realized how powerful his message was doesn’t really matter. The power of a message depends on the way it is received. For me, this message made me feel like a brand new person, full of hope and instantly abandoned by my old frenemy, depression. I was inspired to get myself out of the grave I was slowly digging for myself and focus on my health and mental well being. I slept easier that night, had less disturbing dreams, didn’t feel suffocated by the weight of evil and the thoughts it had been bringing about on a nightly basis. Life finally had new meaning, and, at last, I felt true and organic inspiration.

Enter, the Inspired.

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