#358: The Week Ahead, Part 2

black calendar close up composition

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I wasn’t able to fit all of my thoughts into the 300 word count, so I figured I would turn this ill-timed blog into a two-parter. It just makes more sense that way, and I’m pretty happy I get to occupy more time with more blogs regardless. Because I’m writing this on a Sunday, and because the week ahead is going to be very busy, it’s helpful to have a backlog of blogs scheduled so that I don’t have to worry about writing one or two or three a day when I get home just to catch up to myself. That can be extremely frustrating if left uncontrolled.

So Monday is stressful, regardless of how you look at it. And then there’s Wednesday, when I’ll be starting D&D for the first time with my middle schoolers. Those of you who know already are aware that I’m leading a D&D after-school club one day a week for an hour, and it’s always on Wednesdays. My kids are super excited, which makes me optimistic about everything and gives me hope that this will go well, but a part of me is always unsure about the uncertainty of the game, and whether I’m prepared enough to take this responsibility on. It’s a lot to deal with at once. I’m stressed about the unpredictability of it, but not so much that the students will be bored or have an unfun experience. I will deliver that for them, regardless.

Thursday I have a job interview planned, but that might not go through. I’m not sure yet. More on that later, perhaps.

Friday I have D&D again, for the first time, with a different group of people this time. I don’t know if I’m prepared enough for them and all their new rules and lingo.


#118: The New Raid

black and gray metal machine inside a room

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(This is the first picture that shows up in the free picture search engine for “raid,” for some reason.)

Jimmy and I both agree, the newest raid added to World of Warcraft in patch 8.1, Battle of Dazar’alor, has been a smash hit. It’s a wild ride from start to finish, representing perfectly what an actual, all-out war between two juggernaut super-factions would look like, rendered into the game’s modest engine. There are hefty stakes at play from both sides; consider the targeted assassination of the Zandalari king, and the reckless defense and heated chase through the waters to hunt down Jaina Proudmoore. Amidst all the high stakes is heightened tensions between the two factions after the battle climaxes. No one inevitably dies, except for the king, which leads to the events of the war campaign and allied race acquisition in 8.1.5. This is all just about the raid’s story, touching nothing on the bosses, mechanics, aesthetics, and more. But it’s impossible to separate this raid from the overarching story, as it is a climactic moment in the tale so far.

My favorite boss I’ve faced so far has been Opulence, wherein the raid splits in two and follows treasure golems through cavernous paths lined with booby traps and flame engines. But if you make it to the last room, powerful gems await that can empower your character, allowing them to finish the golems and enter the second phase of the encounter, wherein you face the massive treasure elemental, Opulence. It’s a ridiculous fight, and I loved being able to experience it firsthand in LFR and Normal difficulties. Hopefully, with my gear level increasing so fast, I have the opportunity to raid on Heroic sometime soon. That might be too much stress though, and we already know I’ve talked enough about stress recently!

#115: Stress

man in white shirt using macbook pro

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Stress. We all experience it, one way or another. Stress over work, stress over school, stress over relationships. It’s normal to be stressed, unfortunately, despite it being so toxic and corrosive to our mental health. There’s always been talk about how stress and challenges are essential to learning, that in order to be truly engaged or challenged in a task, there has to be some degree of urgency associated with it.

In some ways, I agree completely. How can I ever expect to learn how to handle stress, for example, without having experienced it in a more constructive, educational way in school? School is and has always been a reflection of life after school, but with handlebars and the bumpers up. Teachers are dictators, at least according to kids, and counselors are helpful, guiding friends. School has the makings of a microcosm of life itself, and the lessons learned in school help students in that they can apply those lessons when they reach adulthood. At least, that’s how it’s supposed to be. I don’t claim that this is what everyone’s school experience was like, or even mine for that matter, but I hope I can convey a sense of idealism, not realism, in this.

So, looping back to stress and the factors that go into it. I am somehow who gets stressed easily, and the second a student says one thing that’s slightly disrespectful, I am taken aback and reeling all the way home. My mind absorbs all the emotions and energy of the room around me, internalizing it all. That’s the life of an anxious mind. But in order to overcome stress, I like to think some advil and World of Warcraft does the trick. (That’s partially a joke; I do play WoW to unwind, though.)

#113: The Drive

adult automotive blur car

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After hanging out at my friend’s house in North Haven over the weekend, I had a really unfortunate experience that haunted my Sunday and made it infinitely worse than it ever needed to be. Thankfully, Alex and I were able to salvage it for our own gain and made the drive worthwhile for us, but still, you can’t help but think about all the time wasted. All the experiences not fulfilled or left unfinished. It’s a bit depressing to think back on time wasted for a simple mistake, something easily preventable, but it’s better to move on and move forward, as I’ll be doing by writing about the experience in this blog post.

What happened is, I hung out over my friend’s house and drove back in the early morning, around 4am. Yes, very late but I was wired on coffee and felt completely fine, so don’t worry about my driving! In fact, the driving is the crux of this whole experience, and after all is said and done, I have to be a good driver, right? So, I lost my medicine bag, filled with all my important medications and more, and realized that I left it in North Haven. I found this out as I was unpacking my backpack before going to bed at 5am. I went to bed knowing I would have to drive back and forth to North Haven again after waking up, which I would eventually do with Alex’s companionship. We listened to The Adventure Zone together, caught up on lost episodes, and picked up some food and smoothies from Claire’s Corner Copia in New Haven, our favorite local restaurant and eatery. It was nice to drive together, nice to listen to podcasts together, and nice to enjoy some food from one of our old favorites. All in all, not a bad day, just an annoying day.

So Many Ways


To say I have a passion in life would be underestimating.


I’ve had a passion my whole life called “doing what I enjoy,” and when I’m forced to do the opposite I tend to be unhappy. I don’t particularly enjoy being unhappy. I’d rather do something I have a passion for. 



There’s so many different ways to express creativity nowadays, one of which being through a blog, like this. Blogs let you speak on your own platform, under (largely) your own rules, with a heaping of critical analysis possible through the efforts of other, like-minded bloggers. I love that.


But there’s more to life than blogging. There’s the impassioned side of me that frowns upon uncreative tasks, unimaginative jobs, and all the other boring subsets. I don’t love that, yet I do it anyway.



And when those tasks, jobs, and subsets bore you to tears, make you cry from agonizing pain, you realize you’ve spent too much time away from the side of you that you’ve come to embrace the most: the artistic, the passionate, the lovely creative world. My summer has not been, for the most part, creative; work has consumed what I call “passion-time” and “normal-time.” Like a deadly infection, the virus of work spreads into unwanted areas of my system until I’m totally consumed by the short but important phrase, “the customer is always right.” Because she is. I’m not a customer though. I just work.



It’s times like these when you forget how many ways there are in life to express your passions. I’ve found that there’s a way for me to be creative at work – instead of following the same, boring formula of “yes” or “no” questions and repetitive conversation, I like to engage in creative discourse, depending on how I feel at the time, so as to enrich the customer’s experience while also giving me a reason to be happy while stuck for another eight hours in this place. 


I like to think that there’s someone on the other line of the phone with a need that I can address. I like to think I can take the extra step by having some fun while maintaining the serious, business composure of retail work. 

There’s so many ways to express your creativity, and although I haven’t posted very much on this blog, that’s because I came to understand that it’s not the only way for me to stay passionate and unique. You should try it, too.











Finals Week

Finals week, finals week oh

How I love finals week!

Presentations, projects galore

Essays and exams more!

Oh finals, finals, everywhere

Stress and anxiety in the air!

I enjoy this finals week of course,

Now, what could ever be worse?