Thought Catalog


21 Ways Self-Aware People Interact With The World Differently

Posted: 18 Feb 2016 07:00 PM PST

iStockPhoto.com / Epicurean
iStockPhoto.com / Epicurean

1. They take responsibility for how they respond to things and people (rather than trying to change those things and people).

2. They don't assume they are better than average, their politics are more informed than most, or their opinions are more factual than others.

3. They are conscious of the fact that how they speak says more about them than what they say – so they speak with precision and intent.

4. They acknowledge and accept other people's feelings – even if they don't understand them, agree with them, or feel they would respond a different way.

5. They practice common courtesies, such as holding doors, or not speaking during movies, or not wearing too much cologne to the office.

6. They give strong handshakes, look people in the eye, and address them by name.

7. They don't start conversations about politics and religion with the intent to prove themselves right, only to better understand another perspective.

8. They don't start conversations about politics and religion when and where it is inappropriate: for example, at a family party where nobody else has an interest in engaging in the discussion.

9. They don't insult other people in order to make themselves feel better.

10. They can practice general objectivity, or are able to recognize that someone else's intelligence doesn't make them less smart, or someone's attractiveness doesn't make them less appealing, etc.

11. They are kind to people who don't necessarily deserve it. They know it is not their job to determine who is worthy of kindness, but rather, to show it regardless.

12. They don't assume to know how other people perceive them, but they also try to remain conscious of social cues to ensure they aren't being ignorant of other people's needs or comfort.

13. They don't overshare, or speak to others with the intention of getting a response from them (they say things to create a large expression of sympathy, admiration, and so on).

14. They accept critical feedback as crucial information they will need to learn and grow, not a condemnation of their ability or character.

15. They see discomfort as an opportunity to grow.

16. They are confident in their strengths while also being aware of their weaknesses. They don't only focus on one or the other.

17. They have their own opinions, but never excessively decided ones. People who are overly-aggressive about their political stance, for example, are that way because their understanding of it is one-dimensional (so the answer seems obvious, therefore, infuriating).

18. They are responsive, not reactive.

19. They don't bond over mutual hatred, gossip or ill-will.

20. They don't expect to feel "good" all of the time, therefore, they don't extrapolate the meaning of a bad mood or a bad day.

21. They are highly introspective. They evaluate their feelings, are hungry to grow personally, and know that understanding themselves is the key to understanding others. TC mark

To The Boyfriend I Planned My Life With, This Is For You

Posted: 18 Feb 2016 05:10 PM PST

Twenty20, thebriddo
Twenty20, thebriddo

When I close my eyes, I can still picture your apartment—-the kitchen with the dirty stove, the bathroom littered with crumpled tissues and bath soap, the bedroom with abandoned sweatshirts and sweatpants like land mines around the bed. I remember the tie blanket with the football print, the coin jar on the nightstand, your hand with the silver bracelet around my waist.

You were him. The one. Or at least I thought. We spent our nights curled up on the couch—me and my homework, you and Sports Center. Our Saturday afternoons were spent cooking breakfast burritos and arguing. Your stubbornness matched mine in ways that always made me question how we even ended up together. But we did, somehow.

I fit your life into mine like silly putty, oozing it into the cracks and empty spaces.

You were the one I traveled with, West Coast to Midwest, swimsuits to wool mittens. We talked about our dreams on plane rides, mapped our futures together on lazy Sunday mornings before church.

You were the one I planned my life with. Graduate. Move. Travel. I fit your life into mine like silly putty, oozing it into the cracks and empty spaces. I was young. I was busy. You were older, your life not put together, but at a different stage than mine. I was ready to sift through my life and make room for you. You were ready to take our lives and mesh them together. But then you were the one who pulled away.

Our lives weren't compatible. Our arguments turned to fights. Our futures drifted apart, the glue holding them together becoming weak and stringy. I made my life more complicated, my schedule filling with work and goals, and yours, 4,000 miles away, could have been another world.

We broke up on a Saturday, the weekend after Father's Day. I remember the feeling. I was dressed in a thin tank-top and scarf, the June heat making my hair frizzy. I tried so hard not cry. I was watching the horse races, squeezed between my mother and sister in little bleacher seats. I watched the horses circle the track, their chiseled leg muscles gleaming in the sunlight. They were resilient.

I felt my life crumbling around me, pieces of who I thought I was getting lost in the voices of the racetrack, mixing with the smell of beer, and popcorn, and lady's perfume.

You were the one I planned my life with, imagined myself at twenty-six, thirty-five, forty-two with children. I shaped my dreams around yours. No longer mine, but ours. And I loved you.

But maybe not enough. Or maybe too much. Our lives were not matched, not in the way they should have been. I still think about you sometimes, wonder if you still have that coin jar on your dresser, if you still have that silver bracelet, and wonder if, in the back of your nightstand drawer, you have a picture of the two of us. And maybe you still wonder sometimes what could have been. TC mark

I Found An iPhone In An Uber Black That Belongs To Someone Very Important… With A Very Dark Secret

Posted: 18 Feb 2016 05:00 PM PST

Flickr, Alan Levine
Flickr, Alan Levine

What am I supposed to do now? What the hell am I supposed to do?

Okay, so here’s the thing. I can’t say too much because it’ll only get me in trouble. And trust me, after finding this fucking thing, I know it would be big trouble. Like, life-threatening type of trouble.

I should’ve taken a regular Uber. I really should have. Not only because now I’m in this mess but because it’s not worth the extra cost and I’m supposed to be saving money but it was my birthday and I just wanted to feel fancy on my drunken, head-spinning ride home. You only turn 29 once so I said ‘fuck it’ and called an Uber Black, you know, the kind that’s basically a low-grade limousine. It was my grown-up version of wearing a tiara to the bar, I guess.

When the silent grey-haired driver pulled up to my house, he glanced at me in the rearview and poked a finger at the mirror.

“Don’t forget your phone.”

Drunk head-spinny me looked at the iPhone sitting next to my purse on the fine upholstery. I figured I’d pulled it out to text or tweet or send a snap or whatever and just forgot about it, so I muttered a ‘thanks’ and stuck it back in my purse. Out of the car, up the steps of my house (tottering dangerously on my heels), and inside I went as the Uber Black slid silently away into the night. I crashed and slept until noon the next day and forgot all about the phone.

When I woke up, it was ringing.

It was a really weird sort of ring, though, almost like… discordant, I guess? I didn’t recognize it as one of the defaults but hey, I have mine set to the theme from “Parks and Rec” so I can’t judge.

I was in that sort of post-party fog so it took me a minute to realize the ringing was coming from my purse and that it wasn’t my ringtone. Without sitting up, I rolled over a few times ending up on my stomach and stretched for the strap of my purse. I was in no condition to be actually leaving the bed yet.

After a few lazy grabs I finally snagged the strap, upending my purse and sending its contents clattering across the floor. The phone’s screen went dim just as I managed to snatch it up.

I might have been hungover but right away I was sure it wasn’t my phone. I’ve got one of those girly coral pink iPhone 5cs — this was one of those massive iPhone 6 plus e=mc² deals. The screen was huge.

I slid my finger across the glass to open it but of course, the touch lock was on and I didn’t know the code. However, I could see the little notification that lets you know whose call you missed.

It was a prank, I was sure of it. Or whoever owned the phone thought it’d be funny to rename their contacts to something else. Because the person who had just called, well, it couldn’t be who it said it was.

I already told you I can’t say much but let’s just say… it was someone big. You’d know him if you saw him. You may know his stance on certain politics, for example.

Shit. I really can’t say too much.

A few minutes later, as I lay in bed pondering what to do with the thing, another call came through. This caller was… different than the first, but just as big, just as prestigious. In a different way. Like, um, you’ve maybe seen her on a big screen? In a lot of different roles?

It didn’t take me too long to figure out that the phone I’d grabbed from the Uber Black was left behind by someone, and that someone was either very silly or very important.

I didn’t know what to do with it. How would I get it back to its owner? It was locked. There was a chance they had their “find my iPhone” feature on but maybe not?

Another call. This one from a person you’ve definitely heard on the radio once or twice.

Okay. So there was definitely a chance the phone’s owner just thought it was hilarious to rename all their contacts to famous people. A bigger chance than the alternative, which was that I was currently screening calls from people worth millions of dollars, right?

It wasn’t even one o’clock in the afternoon when the texts started.

So you know how even if a phone is locked, you can still see the text message onscreen? Not the whole thing, maybe, but most of it?

Someone whose contact name was the same as a bestselling author had sent a text that read:

Fantastic time last night. Unforgettable. Can’t wait for the next one.

What followed was a tiny image preview. So tiny, I could barely make it out, but it looked like…

It looked like people in cages.

They were dressed nice, chic, like they’d been going out or something but now they were all dirty. Scuffed, scraped knees beneath short skirts. One of the guys had a black eye.

Before I could let this sink in, another picture came through. A closeup of one of the girls with the short skirts. She was crying behind the bars, her cheeks stained with runny black mascara.

The next text, from the original sender:

Lol.

I could barely begin to process this when the texts started coming through en masse. All the names, recognizable. All the pictures, horrible.

Everyone was referring to some sort of party. Or maybe it was a live show? Whatever it was, they were all very pleased with the “entertainment” as they kept calling it.

Do you want to know some of the things I saw because I simply couldn’t look away?

Two women in sky-high platform heels, filthy and bloody, sparring in a ring with a dirt-packed floor and what looked like thousands cheering in the audience.

A fit man in a ripped suit, shoveling handfuls of chocolate cake into his mouth with four other chocolate cakes sitting on a table in front of him, his shirt stained with frosting and (what I assumed was) vomit.

A woman mid-twirl, red-hot metal shoes on her feet and a look of agony on her face.

Three people bound together as one’s leg was being torn into by an angry dog; the others sitting there as more dogs advanced on them from the distance.

Photos of the aforementioned contacts who, indeed, are who their contact names suggested. Grinning selfies together in front of unspeakable carnage.

I could go on and on. But I can’t. I feel sick just thinking about it.

But I’m sick for another reason, too. Because a few minutes ago, the texts stopped, and the phone turned itself off.

I think “find my iPhone” IS turned on, and I think the phone’s owner is using it right now.

And so I ask you again: what the hell am I supposed to do? TC mark

To Be Continued…?

25 Real Two-Sentence Sex Stories That Will Make You Really Horny

Posted: 18 Feb 2016 04:50 PM PST

Photo by OnaArtist.com
Photo by OnaArtist.com

1. “When I told him I fantasized about restraints, he asked if I had any spare rope on hand. ‘Of course,’ I said, and then I tied him up and rode his cock like the sex jockey I am.”


2. “It was a one-night stand, but an unforgettable one. She licked my balls like they were the best ice cream she’d ever tasted and fucked me like she'd been thirsting for my dick for decades and I didn't even know her name.”


3. “I knew exactly why the professor stood behind the podium throughout his lecture and when he dismissed class, I stayed back, ripped my shirt open, and made the nerd’s boner mine. I needed that ‘A’.”


4. “‘I like it dirty,’ she said, so I spanked her and twisted her nipples and fucked her in my sex swing, screaming the whole time that she was a cock-hungry slut. She liked it.”


5. “Hearts aren’t made to be broken, but beds are. That's why I banged her until the walls shook and the neighbors complained and the headboard snapped in half from the brute force of my dick plunging into her pussy again and again.”


6. “She squeezed her pussy muscles and I could feel them tighten around the shaft of my cock and that was it. I was done.”


7. “I could tell she wanted it all throughout dinner, the way she looked at me, eyes screaming ‘Fuck me, baby.’ We had sex three times in two hours and I gave her five orgasms, each one more mind-blowing than the last.”


8. “He realized, when she leaned over, that the mounds of her giant breasts looked strikingly similar to her ass. Later, he chose the tits, pushing her breasts together as he poked his penis through the tight little tunnel of space between them.”


9. “Every single week I bring a random guy back to my place, seduce him, and send him home aching for more. The only thing better than being fucked by a stranger is masturbating to the footage (I have a hidden camera) of the whole thing right after he leaves.”


10. “She leaned in and kissed my neck then blew in my ear and grabbed my cock. We did it standing up, without even taking our clothes off, and it was hot as fuck.”


11. “‘Let's fuck first’ she said as we headed out the door so we dropped everything and went to bed and I dove face first into her pussy and we had the best sex we'd had in months. As soon as she mounted me, I remembered just how much I love the sight of her jiggling titties.”


12. “She was an animal and it was a wild night. She pulled my pants down and took me in her mouth until I begged her to fuck me and she complied.”


13. “As the flight attendant strutted past me down the aisle, I salivated over the two faint lines of her underwear showing through her skin-tight uniform. Later, after I banged her in the bathroom at 30,000 feet, I tucked her panties in my back pocket so I could sniff them and jerk off later.”


14. “I was desperate to sleep with the hot barista at my favorite coffee shop, so I asked her straight up if she was interested in sex. We fucked as soon as she got off from work like two long lost lovers aching to tear each other's clothes off.”


15. “We agreed to meet under the big oak tree in the park one scorching summer night. By the time I got there she was lying naked on a blanket, so I followed her lead and we fucked like bunnies then stared at the stars for a brief pause before she mouthed me to erection again.”


16. “The first time she slept over, I woke up sensing that someone was fondling my package, then tonguing the tip of my cock ever so gently. It was the best blowjob I ever got—the one that made me fall in love.”


17. “He was my best friend's boyfriend but there was chemistry between us and if we didn't get sex out of our systems, I knew it would haunt us until we gave in. So I invited him over one night and we fucked each other like we needed it more than oxygen and it was amazing.”


18. “She suggested porn so I showed her my favorite lesbian sex scene and it did the trick. Within minutes we were banging like two crazed horny 20-somethings, clawing at each other’s naked flesh, then we called in a ‘third’ to join us.”


19. “I was hitting on a hot bartender when she took the reins and told me to follow her to the bathroom right then, where she kneeled down and sucked me off. After swallowing every last drip of my come, she thanked me and went straight back to work.”


20. “‘Don't wait for me to come,’ she said, but I wanted to get her off so I pumped and pumped and plunged my dick deeper inside her until she shrieked with orgasmic pleasure. I came right as she climaxed.”


21. “As she massaged my dick under the table at dinner with her feet—first the right, then left—I could barely contain myself. We split off from the group the first chance we got, and had down and dirty sex on the terrace, hoping to be walked in on.”


22. “She asked me whether I liked it and got angry when I took a minute to think. I was in a trance because her pussy was that delicious, I eventually explained.”


23. “When my virgin girlfriend finally whispered, ‘I'm ready,’ I didn't waste a second. I grabbed her by the hand, led her to an empty supplies closet in the north wing of school and plunged my rock hard teenaged dick inside her.”


24. “I popped a Viagra and it worked like a charm. First, I took her from behind on the living room floor, then we fucked in the closet, then I scooped her up into my arms so we could do it, reverse cowgirl style, in the comfort of our shared bed.”


25. “She came. I left.” TC mark

17 Reasons Former Retail Workers Tend To Be Highly Successful People

Posted: 18 Feb 2016 04:40 PM PST

Clark Street Mercantile
Clark Street Mercantile

1. We know how to be patient, or at least how to pretend really really well. Retail is GO GO GO, but oftentimes the customers are not. We know how to put a smile on our faces and just wait.

2. We are hyper-sensitive to people’s emotions. Closing a sale or keeping someone’s business means keeping them happy. Over time, we became extremely attuned to people’s attitude to make sure we were on the same page.

3. We are literally the masters at finding lost stuff. Customers lost wallets, lost purses, lost babies  — we’ve heard it all, and we’ve found it all.

4. Need someone to talk on the phone? We can do that too. In this modern day a TON of people are anxious about talking on the phone. Not only can we do it, we can always tolerate REALLY annoying people on the phone too.

5. We know how to be polite to people we don’t like. We found ways to polite to our lazy co-workers; to our demanding bosses; to our insane customers who tried to return ticket switched items. We can deal with almost all annoying people that life throws us.

6. Give us a huge mess and we’ll find a way to organize it. Sometimes at the end of the day we would find a clothing table devolved into a clothing volcano. We cleaned it. And we cleaned it again the next day. And the next day. We can clean up messes like total ballers.

7. We are used to people not showing up, but we can still get the job done. We don’t have much patience for people who don’t show up and try; we’ve witnessed too many lazy people call off to not be #bitter, but we’ll get the job done because SOMEONE has to.

8. But we will always help people who ask for it. We are always willing to go out of our way to lend a helping hand to someone who needs it.

9. Also, we just don’t sweat the small stuff. We worked in this environment where there was a billion different things to do and if we only missed a few before lunch we were having a very good day. Mistakes will be made, screw ups will happen, we just pick ourselves back up and keep going.

10. But we always apologize for the big mistakes. We have no interest in defending our pride and souring a relationship. We own the big stuff and try to fix it.

11. Because we are “fixers” at heart. Retail work almost always involves “fixing” things. We fix the displays that customers mess up, we fix customer service issues, we fix everything. Or at least we try.

12. We don’t really care about mean-spirited insults at all. Constructive criticism? Absolutely. But our hearts have been hardened by many nasty customers calling us many nasty names. Trust us, we’ll be okay.

13. We also know how to communicate really well. Sometimes we just had to tell people how it is (Sorry, the return policy is 90 days!) and be respectfully direct. That’s how we are with our friends, with our romantic interests — with everyone.

14. We want people to be happy, but we won’t compromise our integrity to make it happen. Customer satisfaction was very important, but that customer who asked for a “special” discount or wanted us to turn a blind eye to ticket-switching bullsh*t never had sway over us.

15. Because we know how to stand up for ourselves. We’ve had to bring stuff up to our managers, and we’ve had to defend ourselves to customers. We know how to do it with tact (and with still keeping our job!).

16. We are extremely accustomed to working quickly. We really just don’t understand people who are slow? What are you waiting for?

17. And we always get the job done. Because our job depended on it. TC mark

20 Women On The Body ‘Imperfection’ They’re Most Insecure About (Even Though It’s Totally Normal)

Posted: 18 Feb 2016 04:30 PM PST

Look Catalog
Look Catalog

1. "My gigantic areoles. I've always wanted a tiny, dainty pair of nipples, like the kind you see in porn. But no—I got them jumbo nips."

— Liana, 21


2. "This one horrifying, pube-like chin hair that I've plucked from the SAME EXACT SPOT at least 300 times in my adult life. Sometimes, it'll disappear for like two months, and I'll be like, 'YAAAS! I'm free!' But eventually, that bitch always comes back."

— Jude, 27


3. "My outie vagina, hands down. I didn't even know an 'outie vagina' was a thing (or that I had one) until my friend pointed it out in college. Now I feel like I'm walking around with cold cuts flapping around between my legs."

— Nan, 22


4. "Nose hair. My boyfriend and I were once lying in bed, heads almost touching, when he suddenly said, 'You have nose hair, you know. I can see it.' I was like, '…………'. He quickly retorted, 'It's hot, though! Don't ever do anything about it.' FML."

— Simone, 20


5. "Stretch marks. I know we all have them but like fuck those guys."

— Amelie, 23


6. "My stupid thin lips while we're all living in a Kylie Jenner world. Screw your lip kits, THEY CAN'T HELP ME."

— Eileen, 29


7. "Butthole hair. Nothing more uncomfortable than when my waxer has to bend my legs behind my head to sheer my anus."

— Ola, 25


8. "My big ass ears. So floppy and decidedly NOT sexy. I feel like a very old, very wise Japanese grandpa."

— Maude, 25


9. “Adult acne. Like wtf, I graduated high school a decade ago and those assholes are still hanging out with me.”

— Kelsey, 28


10. "My height, for sure. I'm 6'1", which would be awesome if I were a guy or a model, but I'm neither. It's really hard to date when you're 6'1" and a female non-model."

— Lila, 21


11. "That weird chunk of armpit fat that will never go away."

— Justine, 30


12. "My muscular arms. It's funny because they're probably the thing I get complimented on most frequently, but I hate them. I know I sound like a total anti-feminist here, but they're just mannish and unattractive."

— Sophie, 19


13. "Having to shave my fingers has never been pleasant. I have this recurring nightmare where my boyfriend proposes to me but, when he's putting on the ring, he suddenly notices my bear-like hands, and he calls the engagement off. So yeah, I'd have to say my knuckle hair."

— Viva, 26


14. "I have super broad shoulders, and they suck. My mom tells me they make me look 'statuesque,' but I think they make me look like the Hulk."

— Bethenny, 17


15. "My gigantic, mountain-like excuse for a nose. You just can't be a movie star with a schnoz like mine."

— Lauren, 22


16. "My curly hair. I've straightened it every day since I was 10, no matter what. I will not go out in public if it's not straightened. Seriously. Rain is my worst enemy."

— Ana Cristina, 20


17. "Big feet. I've always felt like women's feet should be small and cute, you know? Plus, stores always have size 6s on display—you never see Nordstrom advertising size 10 heels. So I try to tell myself that Paris Hilton wears a size 11, but it doesn't bring much comfort to my ogre feet."

— Bernadette, 27


18. "Chronically dry skin that NO lotion or oil can repair—trust me, I've tried them all. I wish I could enjoy that freshly-shaved, buttery-soft legs feeling everyone talks about. But during the winter, I basically disappear into a pile of flakey, ashy skin."

— Alisha, 23


19. "My breast reduction scars. People don't say much about them, but they make me weirdly insecure. Whenever I'm undressing in front of someone new, I'll preemptively/reflexively say something like, 'Don't worry, they're not from cancer or anything!' Always a weird move."

— Heidi, 29


20. "This is kinda odd, but my biggest physical insecurity is my straight eyelashes. Like, they grow straight out of my eyelids, instead of all nice and curly. I curl them every day, even if I'm not wearing makeup or going to the gym. I can't stand them."

— Eleanor, 18 TC mark

23 Thoughts Every Overthinker Has The Very Minute They Try To Sleep

Posted: 18 Feb 2016 04:21 PM PST

New Girl
New Girl

1. When my boss said we should touch base tomorrow did she literally mean “let’s touch base” or did she mean “I’m going to list everything you’ve done wrong at this company since you’ve been here and then I’m going to fire you in front of everyone”?

2. What if the apocalypse is really upon us and I end up like a character in one of those young adult dystopian novels?

3. Alright, I need to put my laptop away and go to bed. *closes laptop, grabs phone, and questions the stupidity of every text message sent within the last four months*

4. What if I have a disease right now but the symptoms just haven’t manifested themselves yet?

5. My best friend used a period instead of an exclamation point in the text they sent me yesterday so I’m assuming they’re mad at me.

6. I still can’t believe that embarrassing thing I said to the check-out person at Kroger three years ago.

7. I wonder how the producers would try to portray me if I ever made it onto The Bachelor. Probably the person who gets too drunk in the first episode and goes home.

8. Why did I agree to go to happy hour tomorrow night with my office buddy? He’s gonna figure out that I’m actually super boring.

9. What if every single person I’ve ever known or loved in my life secretly hates me?

10. *checks clock* Even if I fall asleep right now I’ll only get five hours and forty-two minutes of sleep.

11. *checks clock six minutes later* Now I’m down to five hours and thirty-six minutes. Sleeping tonight is probably pointless.

12. Remember that time I was texting my friend and complaining about my coworker but then I accidentally sent the text to my coworker? Let’s reflect on that ordeal and how awkward it was for the next forty minutes instead of sleeping.

13. I wonder if someone at Snapchat headquarters has a copy of every horrible, embarrassing Snap I’ve sent in my life.

14. Did I sound genuine enough in the Christmas gift thank-you card I sent to my aunt last year?

15. There’s probably a group of people sitting in a dark corner of a bar right now, laughing together at my online dating profile.

16. Let’s make a to-do list right now of all the things I need to get done in the next fourteen months.

17. I really don’t go to the dentist nearly as often as I should.

18. Who won the fourth season of American Idol?

19. Let’s try meditating to calm my mind. Focus…. focus… focus… Justin Bieber’s album was surprisingly good has anyone ever thrown me a surprise party I wonder if I’m a boring person to talk to at parties when was the last time I Swiffered my apartment do I have any outstanding medical bills what if my identity gets stolen whatever happened to Dashboard Confessional?

20. Remember that time I posted something that only got three likes so I took it down? SO EMBARRASSING.

21. Do people think I’m trash because I don’t have a Spotify Premium account?

22. When my coworker signs off her emails to me with “Have a great weekend!” is she really just trying to tell me that she hates me?

23. What if I’ve accidentally done my taxes wrong for the past three years and I have to go to jail? TC mark

Moderation Isn’t For Everyone: Why Some People Need An All Or Nothing Approach

Posted: 18 Feb 2016 04:03 PM PST

Screen Shot 2016-02-18 at 5.38.40 PM

Weight loss is a funny thing. People get riled up about it — they want to tell you what works and what is absolute trash babble. There are only these extremes. Everyone is an expert and everyone is close-minded about what everyone else has to say.

Fundamentally, the science is simple — expend less calories than you consume. Eating at a calorie deficit of 7000 calories for a week is the equivalent of two pounds, but it doesn’t mean your body will weigh exactly two less points when you go to measure. Our bodies are weird and complicated. Weight loss takes time, there’s hormonal fluctuations, sodium intake, whether or not you’ve gone to the bathroom. The science is there, it just can’t be reliably observed in the amount of time the average human wants to see some a concrete reward for their work.

The actions aren’t simple because the actions rely on our complicated relationship with ourselves. They rely on the ethereal substances of willpower, discipline, routine and habit. Substances we are only scratching the surface of.

Why do some people succeed and some people fail? This is a question we can answer partially with a science equation, but there are multitudes contained in every ‘why’ question. We don’t just want to know the mechanics, we want to know the reason. It’s an existential question, not a mathematic one.


At the beginning of last summer I had been trying to lose weight for… as long as I can remember. Something would work for awhile and then I would be back in my old habits. I would creep inside them and hide for awhile embarrassed about failing again and just wanting a comforting place to rest.

I was in a class at my gym I really loved and that, for once, showing up to wasn’t a struggle. I felt excited to get up on the days I had it so that I could work and feel good and giggle with the other women and enjoy myself. So when everyone else was going to do a kind of intense detox for the month of July, I signed up to.

The point was to see if you had any food allergies and notice how things made you feel — so anything that was known to cause those problems was off the table: alcohol, caffeine, sugar, dairy, eggs, soy, nuts, nightshades, gluten, and most kinds of meat. In essence, I spent a month eating rice and avocado, occasionally with some very expensive meat mixed in.

I found myself in this bizarre parallel universe where after struggling to make (objectively) much easier lifestyle changes (calories out >>> calories in) I was making a much harder one with ease. Almost immediately, I didn’t crave junk, I didn’t spend time thinking about cheating, I didn’t think about food very much at all.

When the detox ended, and I had all my choices again, my same old habits returned.


It was around this time that I discovered an article by one of my favorite writers, Gretchen Rubin, wrote about abstinence and moderation:

I find it far easier to give something up altogether than to indulge moderately. When I admitted to myself that I was eating my favorite frozen yogurt treat very often–two and even three times a day–I gave it up cold turkey. That was far easier for me to do than to eat it twice a week. If I try to be moderate, I exhaust myself debating, "Today, tomorrow?" "Does this time 'count'?" "Don't I deserve this?" etc. If I never do something, it requires no self-control for me; if I do something sometimes, it requires enormous self-control.


I’ll be honest, I don’t like moderation. What is the point of doing something if you only like it enough to do it halfway? I like to stay up all night reading a book because I can’t put it down, or toss it out after the first chapter. My favorite way to listen to my music is to become obsessed with an artist and consume their music until I don’t ever want to listen to it again. I want to experience it wholly and then move on.

I always liked that bible verse, “I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot; I wish that you were cold or hot. So because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of My mouth.”

I can relate to that. Who hasn’t gotten tired of someone not being able to make up their mind? Are these disciples in or are they out?


The standard wisdom is to not do anything to such an extreme. Everything in moderation (except moderation itself, which is miraculously exempt from this adage).

People don’t like to accept that they don’t have the Answer. That what might work for them doesn’t work for everyone else. That situations are complicated and people are multi-faceted, that we inhabit social contexts and carry baggage. It would be easier if humans were homogenous robots and were much easier to understand — and reprogram.

But, accepting the complexity of the world we find ourselves in, we can approach self-improvement with an open mind. We can observe that some people find abstinence easier than moderation. We can agree that the 80/20 rule works for some people but that there is no magic rule that works for everyone.

There is freedom in realizing that failing at moderation doesn’t mean failing at everything. Moderation is just what some people say works. It isn’t magic. There are other methods to try. TC mark

14 Reasons Why Your Relationship With Wine Is Better Than Any Other Relationship

Posted: 18 Feb 2016 03:32 PM PST

twenty20/yenformore
twenty20/yenformore

Happy #NationalDrinkWineDay. Or as I like to call it, every day that I damn well feel like having some vino. Cheers.

solidLine

1. Wine doesn’t come at you with patronizing or judgmental statements about your life

“Are you really going to eat that?”
“Do you know how many calories are in that?”
“Shouldn’t you drink more water?”

I don’t know but you should drink a big glass of mind your own business. Instead of nagging you about the gym or finally putting all of the laundry that’s been collecting on the end of your bed away, wine is just there to focus on YOU. It’s not going to make you feel bad, it’s just going to make you feel buzzed. Thank you, wine. Tysm.

2. Unlike people, wine is never going to resist changing.

You’re kind of over rosé and are feeling something a little darker? Great, that’s what merlot is for. You’re wearing white but don’t want to risk the potential cab sav on the white dress situation? No problem, that’s why there’s pinot grigio. They say you can’t change a man, but you can absolutely change your wine.

3. Relationships stress you the fuck out, wine does the exact opposite.

Between the fighting, the nit-picking, the juggling of each other’s schedules, and just the general stresses that come with being committed to another human being, relationships have the tendency to make you a bundle of nerves. Wine? Wine will never stress you out. It’s good for your heart, it gets you to calm down, it’s really there for you and only you. Aka: the best partner EVER.

4. Wine means never having to say you’re sorry.

You know when you have to apologize for something you said or just because someone’s feeling ~*sEnSiTiVe*~ even though you aren’t REALLY sorry? Well wine doesn’t need that bullshit. Wine doesn’t need you to make it feel better. Because it’s wine.

5. Wine is always able to adapt to and compliment your feelings.

Feel like celebrating your promotion? Oh HELLO FROM THE OUTSIDE champagne. Feel like reading too much Andrea Gibson and crying? Cue your good pal pinot noir coming on in with a decanter and a box of Kleenex. Out on a boat and just need to chill? Enter white wine and ice cubes so you can get your tipsy on while also being fresh AF. It’s more flexible and willing to shift than any human ever will be, that’s just a fact.

6. Relationships take constant effort, wine only takes as much effort as you’re willing to expend.

Twist off tops, my love. Twist. off. tops.

7. You never have to look for ways to spice things up with wine.

There’s no such thing as getting stuck in a rut with your favorite wine. That’s just called finding something you love, you know doesn’t make you sick, and you know you can rely on. It’s never going to ask you for a threeway or if you’d be willing to go to a sex club, it’s just going to be there. And that’s a beautiful thing.

8. Even when you fight, you still ALWAYS find your way back to each other.

Let’s face it, even the best relationships still have some tiffs. Sometimes after a night with your wine you’ll wake up with a hangover from hell. It’s not great. But after the headache and nausea subsides, wine will still be there when you’re ready to come back. And it won’t hold it against you if you threw up in the Uber ride home.

9. Wine doesn’t care if you see other people.

Remember all of those adaptable friends I mentioned? A boyfriend or girlfriend is not going to be SUPER thrilled if you hang out with them when you’re watching Netflix, but go to your work parties with someone else. That’s probably going to end with a fight and then a breakup. But wine is totally chill with you changing it up. In fact, it ENCOURAGES it. That’s why the wine aisle in the grocery store is a happy, happy place where all of the kinds can live harmoniously.

10. Wine will NEVER call you irrational or crazy.

It just wants to be there for you when you’re ~*feeling feelings*~ and let you work those feelz out however you need. And it’s not going to subtweet you about any drama either.

11. You know who doesn’t give a SHIT what you look like? (Hint: it’s wine.)

You can be dressed to the nines and look your absolute best or you can be in your 13-year-old sweats from junior high and a t-shirt that’s covered in bleach stains. It literally doesn’t matter. There’s no dress code for wine and it’s not going to ask you to put on something nicer just because you’re popping a bottle.

12. Wine plays well with others.

Have you heard of a little treat called Sangria? Or what about prosecco and elderflower liqueur? While I wouldn’t recommend making a cocktail from merlot and chardonnay, there are plenty of mixes involving your main squeeze vino that are just as tasty. And you never have to worry about wine getting along with your other friends.

13. It’s not opposed to you growing up.

Remember what ALSO gets better with age? Oh YEAH. It’s wine.

14. Wine will never roll over in the middle of the night and tell you that it doesn’t love you.

I love you wine. Never change. TC mark

My Clairvoyant Friend And I Are Digging Deep Into The Mystery Of ‘Making A Murderer’ (Part Six)

Posted: 18 Feb 2016 03:14 PM PST

Netflix
Netflix

Read Part One Here.

Read Part Two Here.

Read Part Three Here.

Read Part Four Here.

Read Part Five Here.

Hello again, dear readers. Sorry for the delay, it’s been a very busy month for both Amy and me. But now we’re back with a scatter-shot of reads for different players in this elaborate game. So take my hand and let’s return to:

Scott Tadych

Netflix
Netflix

Amy previously did a read on “Mustache Man,” as she calls him, and noted that he was absolutely lying and not doing a very good job convincing others of what he’s said to have witnessed. But there’s more.

Okay…so mustache man… so what I am feeling when I tune into him, besides my earlier read, is there is some kind of heirarchy in this family unit? There are positions and places and that has to do with money and land and power and wills, etc. I feel this man may be related through marriage? I could be wrong about that. But he is definitely related to “sad man” [Steven Avery].

This is a really interesting angle. She’s right about Tadych having married in; he’s Bobby and Brendan Dassey’s stepfather and Steven Avery’s brother-in-law. But what kind of issues do the Avery/Dassey clans have with hierarchy? They do seem to own a pretty large lot of land, maybe inheritance is coming to play here? The family seems far from friendly with each other and Barb Janda (Bobby and Brendan Dassey’s mother, Steven Avery’s sister) flip-flops on Steven’s innocence the entire documentary.

He just feels to me what people call a “used car salesman” type of demeanor. A slick talker and a yes man. Has no real backbone. Goes with what he is told and thinks he is much smarter and craftier than what he really is.

Now I don’t know Tadych personally but I definitely agree with this assessment. I think he thinks he’s a pretty smart cookie yet that’s far from the truth.

I feel he was offered something. Someone came to him and said “It is in your best interest if this goes this way and here is why…and can we count you in?” Promises were made and some of those have to do with the positions in this family. There is a lot of resentment towards “sad man” and a whole lot of “you don’t deserve to be still reaping the benefits…” kind of stuff. There were a lot hoping this sad man stayed gone? They were happy about him being gone?

Again, law enforcement having something to do with all this mess is what this reminds me of. But what raises the hair on my arms is — if you, as I do, believe Amy has looked at no information on this case other than what I’ve sent her — the “still reaping the benefits” isn’t even something I’d ever considered. Could she be talking about Steven Avery’s settlement for his false imprisonment? He was poised to make quite a bit of money. Was Tadych’s attitude basically “fuck that guy, he doesn’t deserve all that money, yeah you can count me in”? And in addition to that, the idea that his family (the Dasseys more than anything, I’d guess) wanted to keep him gone… that’s pretty chilling, too, and more than enough reason to cooperate with the cops.

He really is so gross…and just dumb…he actually has no feelings for who this destroys. “It’s for the good of the family…name…legacy…etc.” This is what I hear him saying…trying to convince someone that they are doing the right thing. I hear lots and lots of promises being made by two sides. Protection…”It won’t be that bad”…convincing of time periods, like…”It will just be a chunk of time…and worth it…there will be this for you (some kind of prize or money or title) at the end of it…” He is a liar and as I stated before, a pretty obvious one.

So if this is true, Tadych was more than happy to go along with whoever was instructing him to lie on the stand. I find it very interesting that he was the one doing the “convincing”… I would guess it would have been to Barb Janda, Steven’s sister. Convincing her that it was worth it and the inconvenience to them wouldn’t be long. How wrong he was about that.

I actually feel he knew the woman that was murdered too. The one I read previously. On the telephone…speaking…like he set something up or was part of that whole thing.

I have speculated this before; I think that the Janda/Dassey clan had more to do with Teresa and the sale of the car she was there to photograph than we even know. It’s not hardly mentioned in the documentary but worth knowing that the car being sold on the Avery property did NOT belong to Steven Avery — it belonged to Barb Janda. Makes way more sense that someone like Tadych or Barb would make that call and arrange everything, doesn’t it?

Third official theory: someone in the Janda/Dassey clan actually arranged for Teresa Halbach to arrive to photograph the car, then purposely backed out so Steven Avery would be the only individual she dealt with.

That makes Steven Avery, as so famously lauded, “the last one to see her alive.” And it makes sense: “Oh Steven, we thought we could be there but we can’t, could you just talk to Ms. Halbach so we can get that picture? We really need to sell the car.” I mean, RIGHT?

Okay, since we’ve been talking about them peripherally so much, let’s jump over to:

The Janda/Dassey Clan

Netflix
Netflix

Okay first off, can we talk about Scott Tadych’s smug fucking smirk in that picture? I mean, come on. Thinks of himself as much smarter than he is, indeed. Anyway…

The boys in the picture. Wow. This is heartbreaking. I just feel and keep hearing “they had no choice.” There was no choice in the matter. One, knew this and took his knocks (the angry one.) He is angry at sad man. He is angry at mustache man. He is angry at the whole damn situation.

We’ve covered this in previous parts. Bobby Dassey (the angry one) was most likely involved in all this and promised protection, but never expected his brother Brendan would become a suspect. He’s pissed. I’d be pissed too.

The woman in the photo, she has zero say. Zero. For her life and her own good and also to not “lose” something. That feels monetary to me. Position too.

Barb is hardly in control during the entire case. Especially if the above is true and her husband convinced her that she couldn’t do anything but they stood to profit if she stayed quiet.

That’s enough of them for now. Let’s take a look at the suspected crime scene:

Steven Avery’s Garage

Netflix
Netflix

Something about this place has always felt off to me. I didn’t feel like anything really went down violence-wise in the garage, despite the prosecution’s attempt to convince us otherwise. Here’s what Amy thought:

The garage sends shivers up my spine. I have seen similar to this in flashes of when I have seen her tied up while the men stand around discussing killing her, etc. in front of her. I do feel she was in this garage.

This is a common thread that has come up when Amy read Teresa; that she was held somewhere as these men discussed what to do with her.

I do feel the men were in here with her. I don’t feel she was killed in this location. But it is where she was tied up and hearing them talk about this. I don’t feel this was for a long period of time. Very short. Like even maybe a matter of minutes.

This all makes sense as the garage is right on Avery’s property. If she was snagged on her way out, the garage is the closest, safest place to hide her until the plan was complete.

I feel a whole lot planted here though. Droplets. Pours. Hairs. Even footprints.

Much like the infamous car key, there was evidence found in the garage that reeked of being planted. I recall specifically blood and bullets. If Amy is the real deal, and I believe she is, this is pretty on-the-nose.

Let’s finish up with the only other character in this farce who might be more hated than Ken Kratz and Mike Halbach put together:

Len Kachinsky

Netflix
Netflix

Yeah, grin away, you sleazy little jerk. Everyone knows Len as the public defender for Brendan Dassey who seemed far more preoccupied putting Brendan away than actually, you know, defending him. Amy got quite a read off this guy:

And the we come to goofy man. Oh my…I would not want my future in the hands of this one. Is he a judge? Feels like it. Judge…lawyer.

Nail on the head yet again, on all counts. I don’t think any of us would want our future in “Goofy Man’s” hands.

I don’t even know what to say other than he is a “joke” when it comes to how he handles things. It feels like a three ring circus. Odd…eccentric and reminds me of the “fool” in tarot. Just walking along whistling while everything implodes around him. Unaware of his surroundings. Not able to read or gauge situations at all. Gullible.

Very interesting that she compares Len to the fool. Because, uh, he IS. He seemed totally flabbergasted that Brendan wanted a new lawyer, totally baffled when he was taken off the case completely, and went right along with Michael O’Kelly’s bizarre vendetta against the Avery family. Meanwhile, Michael O’Kelly was too busy crying over that blue ribbon to defend himself. (SERIOUSLY. What is up with the blue ribbon? Did you know he tried to make Brendan take it after their interview?! WHAT. WHY.)


I’ve carefully selected the next few photos for Amy to read based on some research and suggestions from you, my lovely readers. We’re going to get pretty dark here shortly. Stay tuned for some readings on an anonymous note sent to the police, Sherry Culhane, and a bizarre theory/rumor that has everyone talking.

Part 7 Coming Soon.