THINGS I LOVED/HATED THIS WEEK #193

LOVE:

Something Rotten:

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I love the theatre. Whenever I’m in New York City, I see as many plays as I can. If I lived there, I would blow all my cash on play tickets and pizza and chocolate chip cookies at Jacques Torres. I would also be cold but tremendously cultured. And tremendously fat. Luckily, Broadway productions regularly come to Des Moines, so I have the chance to see a great number of plays. This season at the Civic Center, Something Rotten came to town. I had little interest in the production, but when Ru Paul began gushing about it on his podcast, “What’s The Tee,” I knew that I had to get there. A friend and I made it to the matinee on the last day of the show and laughed and laughed and laughed. I had no idea what it was about, and even after reading a couple reviews and summaries, I wasn’t entirely sure.

How could one write a musical comedy about Elizabethan England’s community of playwrights? When the show began, I didn’t quite get it. The opener is the worst number of the entire production, reader, but the rest is hilarious. It is about two brothers with the surname Bottom — which allowed a lot of hilarious jokes that many didn’t get in the crowd, but I giggled — who were playwrights competing with Shakespeare. They weren’t very good, and so they weren’t all that successful. Still, they dared to dream of writing a hit. Instead of using creativity or inspiration or florid languages, the elder brother decides to seek out the advice of a soothsayer who was the nephew of Nostradamus. This psychic foresaw that the future of the theatre was centered on frivolous musicals. This allowed many inside jokes about all the popular musicals of the 20th and 21st Centuries. I was cackling. The show was an absolute hoot, and I didn’t know just how much I needed a comedic song about the Black Death in my life. I so wish that this would be expanded upon and made into an entire show. It’s so funny to see Grim Reapers do a choreographed routines. What a hoot.

Go and see Something Rotten! if ever you get the chance, it’s well worth the price. I mean, I had probably one of the worst seats in the entire theatre, but I still had a great time. I love a good musical.

Drain Stopper:

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Dearest reader, my life has been forever changed for the better. I was soaking in the bath tub the other day, as I like to do… And I need to interject already — why don’t people like bathing? They talk about it being a soup of your own filth and dead skin. This is true, I suppose, but if you shower every day or bathe every day, then the water shouldn’t be all bad. Life has few finer pleasures, I feel, than soaking for an hour in a hot tub whilst sipping wine and reading gossip magazines. I try to do this at least once a week. For my health, you know? When I was first diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, I was told that I should take cool showers so that I wouldn’t have any heat related relapses. This crushed me, so I of course ignored the advice, and I feel just fine. I’m lucky that the heat doesn’t effect me negatively, makes me feel world’s better. Anyway, bathing is amazing and I won’t ever stop, but when I was soaking the other day, I was annoyed that the water drained out so quickly. I was constantly having to refill it with hot water, and eventually the hot water ran out. It was sad, but the tragedy reminded me of a simple device I had seen once in a Buzzfeed article. It’s a plastic thing that you stick over the overflow and it allows you to fill the tub to the brim. I ordered it while soaking. Get yours here! It came yesterday, so I had to try it out. It was better than I expected. The water really did stay in the tub! It was remarkable. I felt so luxurious. I felt like I was in a pool, and if you know me, that’s really one of the only luxuries I don’t have — other than yard and household staff — that I long for. I mean, I’m not doing laps in the tub, reader, but I loved how deep the water remained. It was so comfortable and I lived my best life. Best eight dollars I have ever spent.

SOO AE Face Masks:

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I absolutely adore anything that has anything to do with beauty. When I was being more frivolous with my money — especially the money I certainly did not have — I was particularly delighted with Korean beauty products. Nothing could be more fun than sheet masks and charcoal sponges and vibrating scrubbers. Oh and serums. I love a good serum. But I’m trying not to spend all my money to maintain the face of a 19-year-old. The other night, I was at Walmart, and I saw the most intriguing display set up in the cosmetic section. It was full of elegantly presented masks and scrubs and peels. I was delighted by the beautiful matte black envelopes containing some of the trendiest products. There were gold sheet masks, bubbling masks, peel off masks, and overnight creams made of donkey milk. I of course bought that because it sounds insane. (Heads up: my skin was hella soft the next day!) The one that had me deliriously screaming with joy was a brightening peel. I have never tried one of these in my life, but I always read about them on those lists of delightful Amazon products you should buy. I was, in all honestly, beyond delighted with the experience. In the material, there is a huge amount of fine exfoliant. The package claimed that it would remove dead skin and brighten your complexion. As I began to massage it into my skin I fairly well cackled in delight as an inordinate amount of dead skin started coming off of my face. I never knew how much dead stuff there was on my nose or forehead! It was fairly disgusted to realize I was walking around each day with a corpse on me, but whatever. When I felt my skin after cleaning the rest of the brightening peel off, I literally gasped. My face has never been smoother or softer in all my life. It was softer than an infant’s skin. It was glorious. I was intensely pleased. For $2.50, that was some of the best money I have ever spent. Oh, I just did the bubbling oxygenated clay mask. IT WAS A DELIGHT. I totally recommend you try out all of these products available at your local Walmart. I’m beyond delighted. Go shopping!

HATE:

Budgeting:

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I know that I am far from being in the worst financial state. I still eat well and have boots and can put gas in my car, but I don’t have much, if any, frivolous money. Admittedly, my job isn’t the highest paying, but it suits me, gives me access to excellent healthcare, and led me on the path to an actual career. So I don’t really mind all that much. But still ugh money. It’s the worst because I don’t have enough to support the lifestyle I want. I don’t live lavishly, don’t even want to own a mansion anymore, but I’d just like to buy a sweater because it’s pretty without having to use a credit card. So, I decided it would be prudent and mature and wise to develop some kind of budget so that I could manage the debts I have, save for the future, and perhaps treat myself to something every once in awhile. It was one of the hardest things I have ever had to do. It all worked out in the end, admittedly, but it’s not where I want it to be. I moved some of my high interest bills to a new 0% interest card which should help for a spell, and I gave myself a limited amount of cash to spend each week. I decided to splurge a little and subscribed to a food box program so that I could diversify my dinners and stop eating the same few things every night. It more than doubled my food budget, but I think it’ll work out. It’s impossible to put every dollar you earn back into bills. You still need to live, you know? I’m very hopeful that with some tweaks, I’ll work the kinks out of my new budget and have a manageable financial state by the time I finish my degree and inherit student loans. Then I’ll figure those out. Oh well. I won’t demonize credit cards, reader. They gave me opportunities I never would have ever had otherwise. Still, be careful, but never limit yourself. Of course it’s better to have no debt, but you only live once. And how often are you going to be 27 with the opportunity to cruise down the Nile? I’m guessing just once. I guess I don’t regret a dollar I have ever spent.

Career Sacrifices:

My career

This is not the right category for this complaint, but I certainly don’t love it. As you might know, I am in a teacher educator program. In about a year and a half, hopefully, I should be a student teacher, and then soon after that, I should be employed as a full time teacher. This is a long time coming. I should have done it in the early 2000s, but I refuse to leap down that rabbit hole. I wouldn’t be myself without the choices I have made, and I don’t mind any of them. But still, it’s an annoyance to figure out how to balance college and work and life. I know that it will all work out fine in the end, but until then, there are plenty of things that will be annoying. I just need to vent a bit, I suppose. I am attending a private school, so there is a high price to pay, but thankfully most of my educational debt should be covered by grants and whatnot. Still when I barely make a living wage, this is a considerable irritant. But that isn’t the main issue, you have all heard me mumbling on endlessly about my diagnosis of multiple sclerosis. I have, in all honesty, been tremendously lucky with this horrifying condition. I haven’t had a major flare up, my medication seems to be working well, the many multiple MRIs I’ve had have all come back with shining good news. And all that is great. But I am trapped because of this. I can’t afford the medication without insurance, which I get through my employer, and I can’t do some of the lengthy requirements for the teacher program at work. So I will have to take a leave of absence or resign to complete these tasks. Sad though that is, after working here for nearly a decade, I’m willing to do it. It’ll be great to have my own classroom and earn more money than I have now. I will have a career instead of a job. I will be more educated and able to do even more than I am currently. But until then, I will have to be uninsured for months at a time. I don’t know how I’ll pay for medicine. The medicine costs tremendously more than school. This concern isn’t even what prompted this post. Something devastated me, reader. I was making a map of my future classes with my advisor last night, and there is a class I will need to take during spring break. I always get away during break, and I was desperately hoping to go to Mexico City for a blissful week away from the everyday. Now it appears that I will be in Iowa for this time for the first time in years. Im shaken to my core. I’ll do it, of course, I’ll do anything within reason to get this degree, but, still…how tragic for me! First worked problems, I realize. Sad.

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