It begins with “What do you tell a woman with two black eyes?”
Men who I respect have started this joke around me multiple times. I don’t give them the satisfaction of the comedic timing and punchline. I finish it begrudgingly before they can, because let’s face it- it’s not funny coming out of a woman’s mouth. I don’t care if you set it up as a “white trash joke” or whatever. It’s not funny.
My stepdad is also my half-uncle. So it follows that my stepbrother and stepsister are my half-cousins. Inquire within.
I have ulcerative colitis. It’s like IBS but they know what’s wrong with me. It also means I’m a genetic mutant.
I wish I could be the female Josh Lyman from the West Wing (except less socially repulsive).
I have always wished I had a twin brother. And that’s not just because of Star Wars.
I have been told by many that I should consider a second career as a graphic design artist, but I know in reality that my basis of knowledge on the subject is miniscule. The people who tell me that just have a lot less experience in the matter.
One of my ancestors was killed in the Salem Witch Trials. Check out the Wikipedia page for one Giles Corey, who was pressed to death for not admitting to witchcraft or naming someone else who he could have accused of being a witch.
I was born in Illinois; have lived in New Mexico since I was 9; and hope to live most of the rest of my life in Oregon.
I read Star Wars Expanded Universe books, even though I’ve long grown out of them.
Paul McCartney is my next husband.
I have an almost phobic relationship with jewelry. I don’t regularly wear my wedding ring. I hate it when I go to restaurants and the server is wearing a lot of jewelry and when someone takes an earring out of their ear and places it on a surface or tries to hand it to me I am totally grossed out!
I’m going to start a “30-day challenge” I’ve seen around Tumblr lately, and I suppose I’ll jump on the wagon. This one doesn’t seem like a typical fangirly one- not like the Star Wars one I started and then, sadly, abandoned. I don’t want my tumblr to be all about fangirl stuff.
Day 1: About your name
I’m not sure if this is referring to my real name or my username, so I’ll address both. I see names as very important. Whether they have a planned meaning or a silly coincidence leads to naming, we end up using names in everything that makes us human. Our ability to name is so human, and that’s why I find myself looking into names regularly.
My real name is Andrea Ellen. My mother swears up and down she named me after a woman she worked with while doing social work in Illinois. That woman pronounced her name “Ahn-DRAY-uh”, but my mom chose to call me “AND-ree-uh”. Funny thing is, my father’s name was Andrew and so was his father’s name. (And when she named my little sister, she named her Kate- which is interesting because my mom is Kay.) I don’t think I was just named after some random Andrea she once knew, or at least I don’t think that was her only motivation for choosing that name. Ellen, simply put, is my maternal grandmother’s first name.
I suppose I should also address the issue of my maiden name. I had a name that was impossible for people to pronounce, when my first and last names were paired together. ”Andrea Gomolak”. Say it out loud. How did you say it? If you don’t know me, you probably said “Ahn-DRAY-uh GOH-moh-lack” (except you probably read the paragraph before this so you may have gotten my first name correct). Anyway, Gomolak was such a headache that I spent a lot of time trying to figure out where it was from- Čirč, Slovakia, as it turns out. We have always pronounced it “Guh-MAUL-ick”, which makes sense considering many Slovakians, if women, add on “ova” to the end, and men tend to add “ovich” to the end. You couldn’t do that with GOH-moh-lack, but could easily do it with Guh-MAUL-ick.
I have to admit, though, as cool as it would be to call myself Gomolakova, I was more interested in marrying into a new name. Now I have the 68th most used last name in the United States, so people tend to say it just fine. And you know what? ”Andrea” paired with that name tends to get pronounced my way, and not the other way around.
Act-Naturally comes from two places. First, I have always been a big Beatles fan, and on the HELP! album, Ringo Starr performed a cover of “Act Naturally”. This was an album I listened to more than all the other albums, as a kid. To be honest, I’ve never been a huge fan of Ringo, but that song always tickled my fancy. Second, in one of the videos of my early childhood, my father (who died from cancer when I was 7) saw that I kept locking up in front of the camera. He insisted that I “Act naturally!” And so I’ve latched on to the phrase ever since. Unfortunately, the phrase doesn’t come from some sort of dedication to our natural environment, but that doesn’t mean I disassociate myself from the cause, either.
“If it really works that way, if this longer road to adulthood really leads to more insight and better choices, then Arnett’s vision of an insightful, sensitive, thoughtful, content, well-honed, self-actualizing crop of grown-ups would indeed be something worth waiting for.”—
The following is a post I began in the airport when we were leaving Oregon two weeks ago (it feels like months ago now- far too long):
It’s hard to describe my feelings over the course of my time here in Oregon. My feelings are overall positive. In fact, I feel like spending time with the Petersons in this limbo, this part of my life where I have felt unsure of nearly everything, has been strangely idyllic.
From amazing Oregonian vistas to positive attitudes regarding cuisine and culture; from beer-drinking opportunities to drunken wine evenings; from Starbucks every morning to nightly walks around the neighborhood park. This is the life I want to live sooner rather than later. I don’t know when it will happen, but it’s important to me to be back in Oregon soon, and for an extended period of time.
I have begun to write this while sitting in the Portland airport (the beloved PDX), and I just had a moment now when I looked out the window to see rolling hills of countless trees and was taken aback. The scenery here is my absolute ideal- hills, trees, wide rivers, coastline, and the awe-inspiring Mount Hood. It’s no wonder that most people who visit fall in love with a place like Oregon (let’s just say New Mexico is a bit more difficult to love).
Perhaps one of the amazing things about Oregon are the people. I’ll start broad and narrow down. The general population - at least that with any proximity to I-5 - seems to be naturally adventurous, fun-seeking, and as Joe would say, every Oregonian is born an environmentalist. I love that micro-breweries and wineries are encouraged by both government and the people.
[And now I’ll continue, but from a point of view now removed from that place.]
“…books are sacred to free men for good reasons, and … wars have been fought against nations which hate books and burn them. If you are an American, you must allow all ideas to circulate freely in your community, not merely your own.”—Kurt Vonnegut, Palm Sunday. (You might get several more of these as I’m reading Vonnegut for the first time and loving every word…)
This link is to a video of Joe and me dancing the hustle back when we were first dating. Like the link will tell you, it’s a pretty tame hustle, but Billy Jean is a pretty slow hustle song to begin with.