Me, the Slacker?

You’ve probably noticed I’ve failed to make an April: In Review post yet and it’s already the 12th of May…. Yeah, I’ll cover that in this post first (quickly).

        Nothing to report here, April was useless.        

Okay, no, I’m kidding. I mean I don’t have a ton of things to report, but I have a few things to reflect on. Like…

I managed to read two books, neither of which were the completion of those two books I started back in February. (Who knows when I’ll ever finish them?) You can see what I thought about the two books I did read though by clicking the title: Infamous (Chronicles of Nick, Book 3) by Sherrilyn Kenyon & The Walking Dead (Book 1 (Vol. 1-2) by Robert Kirkman 

With my birthday, Easter, and some beautiful Spring weather all going down in April, I put my camera to use more than usual and tested my photography skills on more than just Gideon for a change (though there are some adorable ones of him, too). Rather than post an excess of “favorite” pictures that will likely slow down your feed, I’ll post one from each of the albums and if you want to see more, feel free to venture to the albums by clicking each of the pictures below. 

‘A Mother-Son Bond through the Glass’
Rachel & Gideon, Easter 2012

Me in the Smithsonian Gardens, Washington DC
(Technically Heath took this, but I set up the shot)

Mariner Point Park

Best of Instagram
(Oh, yeah, I’m on Instagram now. Follow me @swhisted)

Music in April was glorious as usual. It’s one of the constants in my life that never lets me down.

Arctic Monkeys released a new track….


I fell hook, line, and sinker for Four Year Strong and Circa Survive.

“Falling on You”

“Semi Constructive Criticism” 

Saosin and letlive. demanded my ears attention and are still screaming, “Play Me NOW!” despite my attempts to listen to the new loot Heather () sent me for my birthday.


“Homeless Jazz”

And I checked out a number of new (to me) stuff by bands like Cage the Elephant, Arcade Fire, and Sleeping with Sirens. (Clicking those names will take you to a song, FYI.)

The oddest song that found itself on repeat in April had to be this, though:

Sleigh Bells – “Comeback Kid”

As for writing (notice how I saved that one for last?), well it didn’t happen. At ALL. And while I’ll admit to it bothering me greatly (like self-doubt is at an all-time high), I realized that it’s Spring, and while I’d love to deny a truth I settled on last year, it means I probably won’t write anything of value or substance until Fall comes around again. The idea of this makes me feel a little insane. If you are a writer, you know what it’s like to have words trapped inside of you with no way of escaping. If you’re not, I probably just sound like a crazy person, but whatever. I really hope that I can somehow break this seasonal writer curse I seem to have placed on me, but my outlook is pretty grim.

Anyway, the real purpose of this post was to tell you what I’ve been up too because it’s been a while since I did a ‘general life’ post.

Last week I had an HBO marathon of the entire series of Bored to Death and The Game of Thrones. Bored to Death was a terribly hilarious series that was canceled too soon in my opinion. Ted Danson is a riot in it. And I’ve already seen most of Season 1 of The Game of Thrones, but I needed a refresher course before I finished what I’d missed. That show is crazy good. I’m glad I can finally keep up with it instead of having all of Twitter and Tumblr spoil it for me. I plan to finally catch up on True Blood next, as the new season begins in June and I’d like the net to not ruin it for me by still being behind.

I’ve also been watching a lot of hockey. I always keep up with the Washington Caps (my team, duh), but since they’d made it into the playoffs, I was paying even more attention than usual. Sadly, they played their last playoff game tonight. I can’t pretend I’m not disappointed, but I can at least conclude that 3rd string goalie, Braden Holtby, is amazing in the way that Olaf Kolzig was back when I first got into hockey and this thrills me. The caps would be foolish to let his talent remain in 3rd string standings come next season.

Today I just finished reading the funniest book I’ve ever read, and it’s a memoir which is not my typical read, so I’m delighted to have enjoyed it the way I did. I’m not lying when I say I’ve literally laughed out loud, to the point of tears, every couple of pages in this book. It is full of comedic value, even at times when you wouldn’t expect there to be anything funny. You should totally check it out. 

“Let’s Pretend this Never Happened (A Mostly True Memoir)” by Jenny Lawson
(otherwise known as The Bloggess)

Immediately after I started reading Carrie Jones’ ENDURE (the final NEED book) and am already half way through it. I’ll likely finish it tomorrow because it’s so great you just can’t put it down, but I’m sure I’ll regret speeding through the last book so quickly because it’s always sad saying goodbye to a great series.

My weight loss effort has been heavier than ever on my mind. In fact, I’ve become a bit obsessive about it, but like all other things in my life that I let my OCD take over, I can’t see this being a bad thing because it’s keeping me on track more than I’ve been in the past. I’ve been finding all of these people who are as big as me or even bigger who have made remarkable progress – the right way – and it inspires me greatly. If they can do it, there is no reason I can’t believe I can’t do the same. Still, the time it will take can be frustrating. There are days when I feel like I must have made a great progress and the scale has nothing positive to say to me. This can be discouraging, but overall I know I’m making healthier choices and it’s doing something really cool to my mentality. I hope I really keep it up this time. I’d love to post before and after picture with major evidence of my journey.

And, so, that’s pretty much it. My life is so exciting, right? (That’s sarcasm, obviously.) What have all of YOU been up to these days? Please sound off in the comments!

Peace – Sarah

P.S. I know I'm behind on LJ comments. I plan to work on that this week, so sorry in advance if your blog gets a ton of late love.



Memories: Sports

I was just entering high school the first time I tried out for a sport. I’d been sort of athletic before then, but in the form of gymnastics and dance, never a sport that involved physical contact and grueling training. I’m not even sure what drove me to give sports a shot. Maybe it was because my sister had been an athlete since she was five (and a really great one) in softball and soccer, or that all of my friends at the time had already played a sport all of their lives, too, and it wasn't a question of whether they’d play in high school – it was their life, or maybe I just felt like there was some sort of obligation to conform to atypical high school activities. Whatever the reason, I didn't regret my decision to give it a shot. Turns out, I was actually pretty good.

For fall of my ninth grade year I tried out for the field hockey team. I think I've always liked ice hockey because my father does and it was something we could enjoy together. And I’d had two aunts play the sport before me at the same school. They painted it to be a really fun sport so I went with it.

I remember the first day of try outs (which started a few weeks before school started) began at five thirty in the morning. Almost everyone that showed up was still rubbing sleep from their eyes, even those returning to the game from the years prior. We were told to run a mile on the track as our first test. Hardly even remembering ever running a notable mile before it, I was somehow raring to go, ready to outrun these girls who’d probably done it a million times better than me before.

And I did. Well, almost.

The star player, a senior named Kim, who’d just returned from overseas after playing on a traveling team of elite hockey players, seemed to set the standard. Clearly the leader of the pack, I did everything I could to stay on her heels. She made it look easy, but I remember it wasn't for me. I just felt driven to try as hard as the best person there. And I used that mentality in the weeks of tryouts that followed. I didn't believe I’d be some star player too as a result, but I thought that my effort alone would win me a spot on the junior varsity team at a minimum.

Ah, but it did so much more.

When the teams were announced, not only had I made the team, I was the only freshman to make the varsity squad. Varsity! I had a total WTF moment, followed by an immediate OMG – SQUEE moment. And the reward of my effort didn’t stop there either. I hadn’t simply made the team, I was a starter, playing right in front with star player Kim who I’d modeled my performance after. I couldn’t believe it.

Apparently, neither could my friends, or the other players who I’d upstaged. Upperclassmen, who felt entitled to the spot I held on the varsity team over them, were outright vengeful towards me. They did everything they could to sabotage my position, and when I say everything I mean the dirtiest things they could try. One girl honestly tried to run me over with her car at the local shopping market. I am not joking about this.  And my friends, all of those girls who had played soccer their whole life and were sure they’d make the team, only made junior varsity. They thought it impossible that someone like me, who’d never even played the sport before, could pick it up so easily that I was qualified for varsity.

And so I was pretty alone in my happy dance over my success. Which sucked, but somehow it just drove me to be an even better player. I continued to soak up any and all knowledge of the sport Kim had to offer before she graduated and I trained my butt off – I even attended summer camps of round the clock physical torture.

I made All County Honorable Mention that year and by my sophomore year I was captain of the team. It was a heightened game against one of our biggest rivals and our team was falling to pieces. I’d just gained a free shot and as I watched my stick follow through and player on the opposing team was running towards me (which, if you know anything about hockey and free shots is a fail on her part). The hook of my stick connected with her eye socket and there was blood everywhere.

Whistles were blown, flags were thrown, and I was sure I’d be kicked out of the game for destroying this girl’s eye. Instead, after the girl was wheeled away with a maxi pad over her blinded eye, and the commotion died down, the game resumed with even more intensity than before. Like we weren't just fighting to win a game, we were fighting to the death. Before we hit the field, though, my coach held us in a tight circle to plan our next move. And before releasing us back to the battle, she yanked the captain band off our current captain’s arm and shoved it at me stating firmly, “Whisted, you’re captain now!”

I didn’t understand it, but I never questioned our coach. I took the band and slid it onto my arm and gave it my all. We won that game and I remained captain through my senior year.

Field hockey wasn't the only sport I played in high school, though. When spring rolled around I thought I’d give Lacrosse a shot, too. Surprisingly, I excelled at it as well. I was faster in the spring, the upward motion of a lacrosse stick in my hands seemed to drive me for forward like a jackrabbit and even though one might consider being short a disadvantage to a sport you play in the air, I somehow made my tiny stature work for me. It was easy to duck under and away from oncoming sticks.  I was good at keeping the ball tight in my stick and sneaking up seemingly out of nowhere to score goals.

As fun as it was, I probably never reached my true potential with lacrosse. I was also heavily involved in the theater in the spring and juggling the two extracurricular activities in addition to my difficult class schedule became a burden. By my junior year I’d given up on lacrosse and chosen to dedicate myself more fully to theater instead. Sometimes I regret not trying harder to make them both work.

I miss playing organized sports as an adult. I certainly wasn't the type of kid people expected to play these sports. I was girly, dainty, a pianist, a dancer, not a contact sports kind of kid. But I disproved that stereotype by excelling at it. And it gave me so much more reward than just a healthy, toned body. I learned inner strength and self-determination and how to lead people towards a common goal. I found pride in myself for achieving something I would have never thought myself capable of. I miss not only the action of actually playing team sports, but the qualities they helped shape in me. It’s not to say I've lost these attributes, but it’s easy to let them become dormant without a constant feed of encouragement.

There are a lot of people who frown upon sports and extracurricular activities like it, but people should really try to see the bigger picture. Even if I hadn't been some great athlete, I would have still enjoyed the effort it took to be a part of something and I would have still gained those inner qualities by pushing myself the way I did.

It’d be fun to play again one day.