...Another chapter of my life has closed, and another one has begun.
I quit my job selling perfume at Dillard's back in early November. It was not an easy decision for me to come to, and I waffled on it quite a bit before ultimately coming to the conclusion that the job was taking more out of me than it was putting back. There was a lot I really loved about selling perfume to people, but at the end of each day our sales were super slow, half of our team still believed they were kids in high school, and our technology made certain things that should have been easy become difficult or impossible instead. The company didn't want to spend money to fix issues and it showed. I simply wasn't as happy in that job as I could have/should have been, so I moved on, and now the light has returned to my eyes because I moved on. Before I left they had a few days where employees could enjoy an extra discount on top of the one they already have, so I used that opportunity to purchase myself my first bottle of expensive perfume ever! I got a new J'Adore fragrance from Dior called L'Or, and it is just so exquisitely lovely and smells so good on my skin. After I left that job behind I picked up full-time hours at the hotel, working the front desk in the afternoons three days a week and the laundry room at night two days a week. The job is incredibly easy but I am currently traveling the learning curve (there's a LOT of important little things to learn about the hospitality industry, apparently!) so there are mildly stressful moments here and there until I get more experience under my belt. My saving grace has been that I can literally call both my supervisors (my brother is one of them) any time I need anything, which makes me feel SO much better knowing that help is there whenever I need it.
Time for me has slowed considerably since I quit Dillard's, I am now able to hear myself think and look around my life to decide what happens next As much as I loved being surrounded by perfume, I love being free from stress even more. In fact I love it so much that it has become an entire mood for me lately: staying low-key and drama-free, fueled by 20th century nostalgia, dark academia, lobotomy chic & optimistic nihilism. I am not about having anything stressful whatsoever in my life right now, because I have some important deep healing to do. I haven’t been playing any video games lately, and I haven’t been oil painting either, but I have kinda been sleeping a lot-- a rejuvenating kind of sleep, though, for the most part. Lately I have been using a cute little app called Finch to help me set up and actually finish goals both large and small-- it's like a video game that encourages you on your self-care journey by rewarding you when you take care of yourself, and I love it! I've been using it every day, and I even added some friends I found in comment sections online--two of them have responded often & we are buddies! We just send each other happy little vibes every day like "hello" and "hugs", stuff like that. I hope whoever's behind Pinky & Tamara as well as Minerva & Julieta are doing well, because they sure are sweet.
My Thanksgiving holiday was nice & quiet & non-traditional, Billy and I just watched Guardians of the Galaxy Volume 3 and of course like all the others I loved it because those films are freaking awesome. I am always down for non-biological family narratives, especially when such families are composed of societal outcasts (I obviously see myself represented in such media & it makes me feel happy to be seen & understood on even some small level).
I've been eating fast food a lot lately bc it’s super convenient, but I feel like I should stop that & put energy into cooking, baking & meal planning instead… which I’ve been saying to myself for awhile now. I have all the equipment, it's not like I'm incapable of making food, it's just there's only 24 hours in a day & a limited amount of usable energy for me to work with & I do try to spend as much of it as possible on other things. Making food isn't as complicated or difficult as my mind keeps telling me it is, though, so in reality it all comes down to my time management and motivation to keep trying. Even though my first attempt at making Japanese bento boxes didn't really go well, I think I'd like to try it again & I'd even like to attempt other dishes (the next recipe I'd like to try is Shoyu Chicken Ramen, which is what I always order at my favorite ramen shop).
I've been thinking a lot about the future lately, and about how I would like to experience living in another part of the planet for awhile before I die. The possibility of moving to Japan one day to teach English keeps coming back to me as a pleasing and viable option. The idea is a tantalizingly lovely one, since I have been enamored with Japanese culture ever since I was introduced to anime via Sailor Moon. My customer service skillset and my recent emergence into the hospitality workforce means I should be able to make myself useful no matter where I decide to go in the world. And if I ever decide I want to shake my life up again, I could switch tracks and go into cybersecurity because trustworthy people will always be needed as the digital universe expands forward.
Medusa is doing well enough without Lucy around, although I fear she might be a bit lonely without any other dogs in her life (even though I'm certain she thinks of me as a large bipedal canine, lol). The only problem is that Lucy's aggressiveness has taught Medusa some bad social habits-- it seems she thinks every dog she meets is like Lucy & should be treated as such. So whenever we go out for walks (the only time we see other dogs or other people) and she sees other dogs, she barks aggressively and lunges at them in an effort to get them to play with her. Now, I know Medusa's not really being aggressive or trying to hurt the other dog, it's just that the only other dog in her life to this point was hardcore and so she adopted those mannerisms when socializing with other dogs. So it might be time to find her some new doggie friends so she can get used to socializing with a softer personality type. I don't know how I'm going to do that, not yet at least. The idea of getting another dog IS on the table, after all. But for now, it's just Medusa and me moving through the world together, for better or for worse. Hopefully for the better, obviously.
I've recently experienced a resurrected passion for academic study, particularly in the areas of physics and mathematics. I bought some arithmetic and algebra workbooks to get myself practicing again, and I've been reading a lot about Einstein's theory of relativity. What kickstarted this was my becoming obsessed with the movie and original soundtrack of the science fiction film Interstellar, which was made using as much real science as possible. The physicist they consulted during the making of the film, Kip Thorne, wrote a book about the science they used to construct the film's universe, and I found it so fascinating and so well-written that I ordered and am already reading another book of his titled "Black Holes And Time Warps" (he came out with a new one this year, "The Warped Side Of Our Universe", that will be the next one I read). I've been asking Chat GPT a lot of questions about the intersections of science and philosophy lately; the responses I've received from it are sensible albeit predictable. It’s nice being able to ask things of a knowledgeable entity without being judged by it. I’m becoming more interested in using a virtual assistant now because of this experience. All of this helps me greatly in my own understanding of the universe and the lifelong construction of my own Theory Of Everything regarding it.
Despite my recently renewed zeal, I still think about death a lot. Most of the time it is a cathartic experience, but occasionally the heavy nature of it haunts me. Sometimes I feel disturbing existential anxiety or intrusive thoughts, usually ones involving Medusa getting hurt. Just as I always have, I find myself wondering about the end of my own life quite a lot, details such as how and when it will be and what relief I might feel to melt away from all existence. I've been thinking the same things about the end of our universe, too. I think I just want to feel that I’ll be okay when/if I do choose to go, no matter what other people may think about that choice. Lately I've been channeling these thoughts and emotions into my artwork, and am currently working on a pieta-style digital painting featuring Sailor Moon and Galaxia, whose death and final moments in the ending chapters of the manga have influenced me greatly as a philosopher. I recently realized a remarkable parallel between Galaxia and Rappaccini's Daughter that I hadn't thought of before: for both of them, curing them meant their demise was necessary. I don't particularly believe Galaxia committed suicide, I find it more likely that she knew her change of heart would mean the end of her evil existence and I think she embraced it anyways in her final moments. If anything it was Eternal Sailor Moon who "committed suicide" by sacrificing herself to destroy Chaos (which I find fascinating in a whole different way). Anyways, I have my heart set on creating two versions of this pieta painting: one painted with a warm palette in a renaissance style featuring Eternal Sailor Moon, and the other with a cool palette in vaporwave style featuring Sailor Cosmos. Since these paintings are entirely for me, I haven't decided if I'll ever show the world when they're finished, but I do have every intention of hanging them upon my bedroom walls.
In a different vein, I've been considering trying out some of those AI programs that create imagery from text and pixel prompts, for the purpose of making concept art for my many projects. Like I've already stated, I don't have the resources to accomplish everything I want to do, which means a lot of my stories will probably never be told if I can't find some way to visualize things without having to make every image from scratch. These programs could help me bring more of my ideas to life, and I find that thrilling to contemplate. But I would never consider my AI-generated imagery to be on an equal footing with the artwork I create from scratch myself, and I never want to become so addicted to the convenience of AI that I stop producing artwork altogether! But I am too in love with art-making for me to allow that to happen, so I am not worried about it. The only thing to be concerned about, I think, would be other people's negative opinions surrounding the controversy of AI artwork... but that's really not my concern, anyways, since I believe it is capitalism that is the true culprit in the matter.