Autumn’s Adventures

The Saboteur
May 19, 2009, 12:02 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

I am an idiot.  I’m just like every other girl I criticize that has men problems. I am no better and I have finally *really* realized that I sabotage myself almost every single time when I’m with a guy I like.  I think about all of the guys I have had an opportunity to date and how every time things ended I blamed them for being the wrong “guy” or the idiot when in reality from the beginning I was putting an invisible chastity belt on myself without even realizing it.  My friends of course didn’t help me to realize this. For them, it is easier to criticize and blame the guy versus making me feel worse than I already do after being rejected by telling me that it was actually my fault.

I’m so concerned about guys respecting me and about not having “relations” until I have a boyfriend that in the process I scare away every potential suitor.  To them I am not communicating “respect me, I’m worth the wait”, but rather, I’m holding a giant red warning sign that says “watch out, I’m complicated!”  I may know what I want but I don’t have a very good elevator speech for it and in that 11 seconds I normally blow it. “Hi my name is Autumn, I will not have sex with you until you are my boyfriend and I demand your full respect from day 1. I know we just met but please follow these rules before even knowing my last name.”

If a guy wants to have “relations” with me too early in the dating phase I say no without hesitation, without thinking twice.  But the not thinking twice thing is was gets me in trouble because I don’t just stop at the word “no”.  My no is always followed by “because of x,y,z” which guys are not interested in hearing and which is in fact a giant turnoff.  I don’t know why I think I need to defend or rationalize my “no.” No means no. Simple as that.  Guys throw out the sex question because to them it’s like casting a fishing reel.  Sometimes you catch a fish, sometimes you don’t and either way it doesn’t hurt to keep on casting.

This isn’t a new concept to me.  Guys have told me outright that this is the way it is. BUT when a guy shows interest in me and I like him back, I start to think too much about the situation and therefore throw almost all of my rational thoughts and previous “lessons learned” out the window.  I act on my insecurities, my heart is driving my thoughts and my rational brain goes on vacation. It’s just a fact of our biological differences.  No matter how much I want to fight it and think that I can fall in love rationally, I am just like every other member of my gender: Our heart takes the lead and more often than not it fucks us over.  Unless you are like my abnormally rational younger sister who seems to have a better head on her shoulders than I do when it comes to love.

Because of this “heart defect” I fall very quickly for someone if things seem to be going well. It is hard to suppress what I am thinking or feeling. I can’t easily go with the flow and see where the wind takes me. I will analyze every single detail of my encounters with a guy I like.  For some reason, talking out my “crazy” with my girlfriends doesn’t get it out my system.  I mean, my girlfriends are supposed to be my crazy blocker but apparently they aren’t blocking enough. Crazy takes me over and tells me that I need to go to the source, the actual dude and talk to him about the things that are silently driving me mad.  Bad idea, heart.

With Dani, he made it clear that he didn’t want a relationship but I still went with it just to see if it would end up differently — I was trying out the “go-with-the-flow” method.  After a month he was still singing the same non-committal tune and my feelings for him were only getting stronger (self-generated, he didn’t really give me any reason to like him more).  I was surprised that I lasted that long without spilling my emo-thoughts all over him but even a month isn’t very long at all.  After 1 month I did the crazy talk and he said we would be better as friends.  About 6 months later I come to find out he is dating someone, probably because she went with the flow and didn’t release her crazy like I did.

With boys in the US…well the same thing would happen.  I’d have 1-month trysts with these guys that I’d really like. I’d hit the 1 month mark and I’d be itching to talk about where it was going and what i expected of them — I just hated wasting time going through the motions of something so uncertain.  I didn’t necessarily set up ultimatums. I didn’t say “you have to be my boyfriend by the end of the month or else.” it was more like “i really don’t want to be in limbo like this if it isn’t going anywhere.”  Which, after a little reflection is actually a really passive aggressive ultimatum — one of the worst kinds.  No wonder none of them worked out.  Had I just kept my giant mouth shut most of them may have turned into something potentially significant.  The guys weren’t bad guys and I still talk to some of them on occasion.  It was just my method that was flawed.

I bring this whole topic up because I successfully terminated another opportunity with a guy in less than 4 days.  I met him Thursday, had lunch with him on Friday, spent the whole afternoon with him on Friday, enjoyed the day so much that I thought about it all Saturday and Sunday, made a bigger deal about it than it was, talked about it on Monday with the guy, talked about my feelings/respect/etc and in the end he said “well then its best if we are just friends so that I do not shame you.” haha shame me. shiiiit.

Another one bites the dust. AHHH it is so frustrating.  My new strategy is to put up a list of “DO NOT DO’s” on my wall to remind me what not to do if another guy comes along that I fancy.  It will go as follows:

1. Just say “no” when they ask the sex question.  NOTHING MORE! If they ask ‘why not’ just say “if you don’t know why then you don’t deserve it anyway” If they keep pressing you, just fucking get up and leave.
2. Do not utter the word boyfriend or girlfriend. Just don’t.
3. Do not talk about respecting yourself. Show it by demanding it without words.

Sounds obvious, right? Just writing them out makes me feel a little bit stupid but I realize now that my brain is back from vacation. Try telling these things to your heart when it is crazy full with butterflies and mixed feelings and it will fight you to the death.

My Old Lady
May 17, 2009, 11:42 am
Filed under: Argentina | Tags: , ,

As I was walking to the gym today a little old lady greeted me very friendly-like and started talking to me but I didn’t really understand what she was saying so I kept walking.  She was heading in my same direction so she just kept talking to me and as she got closer to me she realized that I wasn’t the person she thought I was (which was her neighbor’s neice).   When she realized I was the wrong person she put her arm around me, giggled grandma style and gave me a big sideways hug.  She continued walking and talking to me all the way to centro.  She was the cutest and sweetest little thing ever.

The Break Up
May 13, 2009, 10:04 am
Filed under: Argentina | Tags: , , ,

When I walked into the kitchen this morning Laila and the maid were in there.  “‘Tevs,” I thought, “I can handle being in the same room as her, no biggie.”  As Laila was on her way out the door she said “Autumn, after you go to Macchu Pichu you need to find a new place to live.”  Damn her — she said it first!  I had been waiting for the appropriate moment to tell her that I would be moving out at the end of the month (not after Macchu Pichu which would be in 2 months) but since we barely see each other at all, at most for 5 minutes each day, finding the appropriate time wasn’t easy.  I didn’t want to do it her way as I walked out the door.

It felt like we were breaking up. Like we both knew we were having problems and we both wanted to break up and it was just a matter of who did it first.  In any type of breakup, you always want to be the doer, not the receiver.  I didn’t want to be “kicked” out of the house, I wanted to gracefully remove myself from it and possibly even part ways amicably.  I think we are past my ideal way of the storybook ending of this situation.

I was a little annoyed that she said what she said in front of the maid.  Either she doesn’t consider the maid important enough to have existed and didn’t think what she heard mattered OR she didn’t care to keep the matter private and just between her and I.  I choose the latter explanation because I found out later today that she also called my host mom here in Argentina and apparently “tattled” on me.  I’m not exactly sure what was said, I just know that she has now tried to blacken my name among the people I respect here and who respect me.  How lame.  I mean, I guess I’m doing the same thing by shouting this drama to the rooftops on my blog but I’d like to think that I am telling a story versus blatantly trying to ruin her reputation as a good person.

On top of this morning’s breakup, I come home tonight to find that a French girl has moved in to the spare room while I was away this afternoon.  What the hell?  She only broke up with me this morning and she’s already found somebody new?  She had to be cheating on me…

No but seriously, this woman works quickly.  She didn’t even have the decency to tell me that I would be sharing the house with yet another person.  Good thing I move in about a week.

I told the French girl that we should sit down and have a chat.  I am not going to bash the shit out of Laila like she is doing to me all over town but I am going to let her know of the obvious things in the house that need repair that I have been putting up with for 5 months.  Laila is apparently milking the French girl for more rent than me — 850 pesos a month versus my 750 pesos and frenchie’s room has visible black mold. Ouch.  Unfortunately, there aren’t many places to rent in Jujuy so she will probably be stuck with Laila.  As much as I hate seeing Laila jump right back on the money train, I can’t recommend a better option for frenchie and it is really not my place to anyway.

Pearly Whites
May 12, 2009, 8:41 am
Filed under: Argentina, Health & Wellness | Tags: , , , , ,

I’m kind of anal when it comes to my health, especially with my teeth.  I have never had a cavity in my life due to “hard teeth” and a strict brushing & flossing regimen.  The only invasive surgery I’ve had in my mouth was getting my molars removed which I thoroughly enjoyed.  Laughing gas has to be one of my most favorite drug experiences ever.  I actually enjoy going to the dentist as well. It’s like my mouth has been to the car wash and I treated myself to the turtle wax finish.

I have been in Argentina for almost 9 months.  Once I realized this and realized that I normally go to the dentist every 6 months, as advised, I quickly called up my yoga teacher who also happens to be a dentist.

I showed up to my appointment, eager to see how much different it would be from the States.  For starters, the exam room was bright lime green.  Even the exam chair was green to match the walls and the cabinets.  It was amazing, to say the least.  I am fond of the color lime green.  The room was anything but sterilized and organized, with tons of green plants spilling out onto the porch, a bottle of soda on the sink and tools and creams randomly placed everywhere.  This was definitely Argentina’s way of doing dentistry — totally laid back.  He was playing some jazz in the background and wore jeans and a t-shirt.

I sat in the chair as Sergio, my yogi-dentist prepared my cleaning.  He didn’t put a “bib” on me to catch the flying spit, he didn’t wear gloves or eye protection — he just let my mouth juices spray all over his face and my chest like we were having a “wet ‘n’ wild” competition — who could leave the room with more of my spit on them by the end of the exam.  I’d say he won as his face was closer than my chest.  It didn’t seem to bother him at all.

The exam didn’t take long. At the end he pulled out this tube of fluoride that looked like pink hair gel and tasted probably the same (as I’ve never tried to eat hair gel before).  When I was done I paid him the 30 pesos for the exam which is less than 10 USD.  Not too shabby.

Breakfast, American Style
May 7, 2009, 5:53 pm
Filed under: Argentina | Tags: , , , ,

My friend Pato asked me if I would cook her a real American breakfast.  I am totally willing to show my spanish friends a bit of my culture, especially since I already make American breakfasts here all of the time.

I was thinking of offering the following menu for them:
-over easy or scrambled eggs (which is more american? I’m a sunny-side-up American)
-american toast, buttered with option for jam as well
-bacon (OF COURSE)
-homemade hash browns
-french toast (maybe)

Does anyone have any other ideas? Am I leaving a major American breakfast staple out of the menu?

The Toilet Seat is not Toilet Paper…
May 6, 2009, 5:51 pm
Filed under: Argentina | Tags: , , , ,

I woke up this morning and stumbled half asleep to the bathroom.  When I went to plop down on the toilet I saw that SOMEONE or SOMETHING had left a smudge of wet sloppy poop on the toilet seat.  This didn’t look like cat poop and it didn’t look like the cat jumped on the toilet seat with a poopy paw.  This looked like HUMAN shit.  I saw that the bathroom did not have any toilet paper in it.  I wonder if someone decided to wipe their ass on the toilet seat…fucking disgusting.

Sugar, you had me at hello.
May 6, 2009, 8:53 am
Filed under: Argentina, Health & Wellness, Paleo | Tags: , , , , ,

I admit. I have an addiction. This addiction is just as unhealthy as smoking or chewing tobacco.  Maybe it is even as bad as crack cocaine, and they look similar too!  This addiction I speak of is refined sugar.  I just can’t get enough.

When I decided to try out the paleo lifestyle I couldn’t believe how easy it was to give up salty bread products, potatoes, pasta and rice.  But when it came time to say goodbye to the cookies, chocolates, cakes, pies, muffins and other flour-powered, sugar-packed sweet treats, I couldn’t say goodbye.

If I couldn’t kick it straight away at least I would try and manage it at a semi-healthy level.  For the most part I have it under some sort of control (portion control, that is) but I hit rock bottom today and I can’t look myself in the mirror and be proud to call myself a primal blueprinter, paleo queen, cavewoman of the 21st century…nothing.  I’m just an addict, a weakling, a sugar whore.   At this moment of sinning I realized that my brain had control of me and not the other way around.

What horrible thing did I eat containing sugar that could make me have such a mental paleo breakdown?  A. Fucking. Donut.  And not those light and fluffy feels-like-your-eating-a-cloud Krispy Kreme type doughnuts.  NO!  This doughnut was like a 10 pound mass of densely fried dough that had at least an inch thick of sugar coating it on the outside.  It was a sugar monster for sure and every bite made me think I was one step closer to death.  But it was damn delicious.

Why did I do it?  Well, hmm…other than my non-rational part of the brain kicking in, the only semi-rational explanation I could come up with at the time was “holy shit a DONUT in JUJUY! I haven’t seen or had one of these since I lived in the States!”  I was feeling nostalgic. I was feeling homesick.  I was making excuses, basically.  If I were actually in the US I wouldn’t even blink at a donut.  Ok, I would…I do find a good glazed, powdered or cream filled with chocolate covered donut to be quite delicious, but if I were paleo in the States I would not be running to find the closest Krispy Kreme.

I know it is just food.  I know that I know that it is bad for me and that I made the choice to eat it anyway.  Knowing these things doesn’t make the guilt go away and for someone like me who likes to be in control, feel good about myself and be more or less healthy, this fucking donut was more than just a delicious ring of sugar.  This donut showed me that there is one thing that has control over me, and that is sugar.

If I don’t eat a piece of chocolate or have some sort of sugary treat every day I at least have to have a piece of fruit to get my fix.  I cannot go a day without some type of sugar, natural or super-refined.  I’m trying to gain more control by finding healthier sweets recipes out there like almond butter and 100% dark chocolate cups but it’s like a needle in a haystack trying to find the healthy baking ingredients I need to make healthier sweet alternatives in Jujuy.

Being paleo in Argentina is great for the delicious (and cheap) steak, vegetables and fresh eggs but when it comes to sweets, Argentine’s LOVE their refined sugar…and so do I. 😦