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Learning to Forgive.

Free the heart with forgiveness.

Free the heart with forgiveness.

“I definitely miss talking to you,” his text read. “I have some things in my past I need to work on. I took it out on you and I sincerely apologize.”

Those were the words I’d wished for, for months after this guy told me he didn’t want to talk to me again, with no explanation as to why.

I spent weeks wondering what I did to piss him off so much that he’d never want to speak to me. And there it was: I’d done nothing.

In a way, I was completely relieved to read this, but in another way, the damage had already been done.

One of the worst feelings in the world is having someone you trust turn on you, especially with no reason or closure.

When he did it, my heart broke. I felt insecure for weeks. I questioned whether or not I was even ready for a relationship.

I asked him why he did this to me and he said he has commitment issues and a habit of pushing people away.

Having “issues” is definitely something I understand, but I wondered what happened to him that made him so scared of a relationship.

Perhaps it was a previous breakup; or something with his family, though I’m fairly certain his parents are still together. It’s a question only he can answer.

As I get older, the odds of meeting people dealing with baggage or issues gets more likely. And there are things I’m working on, too.

But I hate to think that even at 30, some of us are dealing with things so difficult, we can’t even talk to people.

One of the most difficult things for me is learning how to forgive. I’ve got a lot of hurt in my past, and I’m really bad about holding onto grudges.

I don’t claim to be bitter for nothing, folks!

There is a huge part of me that wants to forgive this guy and let him back into my life — assuming he even wants to be back, of course.

After his apology, he mentioned all the times he thought of me and wanted to message me, but was too afraid.

We shared a decent number of good memories together in a short amount of time. And that’s something that doesn’t happen often.

But who’s to say he wouldn’t go cold on me again?

And that’s the catch in every relationship. Love is always a gamble; one of the biggest bets you can make.

After a bad breakup several years ago, I sought the help of a therapist. I needed to know why terrible things kept happening to me — especially in relationships.

My therapist explained to me that everyone’s life moves in cycles. You may meet someone at the top of their mountain, or you may meet them as they fall.

How we treat others is in direct correlation to how we feel about ourselves, or our situation at the time.

So much to say that when people hurt others, it usually has nothing to do with the “victim” at all.

I don’t know what the future holds for this guy and me. Of course, I hope he can learn how to move past his issues and find a way to accept people into his life.

Perhaps we both just need to forgive those from our past and face the future with open arms. Sure, the house usually wins, but you just never know when the odds are stacked in your favor.

Pic of the Week.

His and hers.

His and hers.

I’ve had a houseguest since Saturday. He’s a coworker, and needed a place to stay for a month while he works to save money for his apartment rent come July. He’s 19.

Welcome to Hotel Holly. Well, Hotel Holly & Blanche.

When my friend said he needed a place to stay, I wanted to help him. But I told him we’d have to set some rules. After all, my place is small, I’m used to living alone, and I didn’t want us to hate each other at the end of June.

So, he agreed, and here he is. So far, he’s insisted on being my “housewife” and has put away my clean dishes from the dishwasher, folded my clean clothes from the dryer, and shared his homemade pasta sauce. As I type this, he’s pulling a tray of homemade cheese bread out of the oven for us.

We’ll see how long this lasts, right?

I’ve never had a houseguest for an extended period of time, and although it’s a new experience for me, I think it’ll be a good one. When I was prepping my place for his arrival — dusting, mopping, sweeping, putting things away — there’s things I really started to appreciate about my apartment.

Sure, it’s small, but at least it has 10ft ceilings so we don’t feel cramped sitting in the living room. I also have plenty of tupperware for my houseguest’s leftover food needs. And I have a stock of candles, toothbrushes, and other toiletries for his use. And above all, my place is safe and quiet. At the end of a day’s work, those are the most important things, at least to me.

So far, it’s been kind of nice having someone around when I come home from the gym or from work. But I also have to pull myself away from impromptu cheesey bread and conversation when I should be doing freelance. Like anything, it’s a balance.

Maybe this experience will teach me something about living with someone. It’s not a romantic relationship by any means, but it’s already made me realize some things about myself — like I should do a better job at cleaning my dishes.

Setting up friends, for a date.

Whoa, they look happy.

Whoa, they look happy.

A post on my Timehop app the other day reminded me of a few dates I went on with a guy who was introduced to me by a mutual friend. For some reason or another, our relationship didn’t work out — but the dates we had were absolutely fantastic!

Being set up by a friend can be a really good thing. It can be a nice surprise; let’s face it, getting set up is basically the laziest way to find a date. But statistically, a setup is how many people find their matches for life, probably because the person setting them up knows them well and thinks they’d get along-slash-have something in common.

The risk is… what if things go wrong? Then the friend might be placed in the middle — never a good place to be. So, there’s a few things to keep in mind if you’re thinking of becoming the next Patti Stanger.

  1. Make sure it’s okay. Don’t just spring the news on your single friend. Ask first. A simple: would you be interested in me setting you up with another friend of mine? Because sometimes single people just want to be single, alright?
  2. Have some reason for the match. Make sure the two folks you’re setting up have something (or maybe a few things) in common. Don’t just set them up because they’re both single. Not going to work.
  3. Don’t oversell. Don’t pitch the date to your friend with any false information, don’t embellish, really, I don’t even think you should discuss it too much. Just let the person go on the date and make opinions for him/herself.
  4. Figure out the logistics. Is he going to text her? Are they just going to meet in public first? Work out the details so the date can be low-stress.
  5. Try to stay out of it. Once the date happens, sure, be there to clear up any confusion, but make sure you’re not the one adding to the complicated mess. Leave it up to the daters — remember, you don’t want to get stuck in the middle.
  6. Don’t take it personal. If things don’t work out, don’t get upset or think it’s your fault. On the other hand, if things DO work out, be happy for them!

Boyfriend Recipe: Green Eggs & Ham.

Yes, I like Green Eggs & Ham, even in a house with a mouse… okay, so not really. When you actually think about it, green eggs and ham sounds super disgusting. Amiright?

I know I’ve been a little slow to add to my collection of Boyfriend Recipes lately, and that’s mainly due to the fact that I’ve got NO man in my life to cook for! Considering that even the smallest of crushes I’ve had in the last six months have gone running for the hills, or in any direction that’s opposite of me, I’m sticking to my Stranger Love crush (see: yesterday’s post) and John Mayer for now.

Anyway, there was of course a time when I had a man in my life, and when that happens, I’m in the kitchen. I’m no fool.

A few years ago, I made breakfast for my then-boyfriend in celebration of St. Patrick’s Day — I made an updated, delicious version of Green Eggs & Ham. You may have read a little bit about it in my first book, “How I Fell: Love, Lies & Cocktails.”

It was festive, and absolutely impressive, but the best part is — it’s super easy to make. Father’s Day is fast approaching and maybe the man in your life is a dad; surprise him with breakfast in bed. Or perhaps you’re single and you just need a slow morning to treat yourself. Do it, girl!

INGREDIENTS

  • Eggs (2 for 1 person, or as many as you/they wish)
  • 1 package of prosciutto ham (about 8 slices)
  • English muffin (1 for each person)
  • Pesto (homemade or jarred)
  • Olive oil or non-stick spray

DIRECTIONS

Slice and toast the English muffins, and have them open-faced on the serving plates. Add slices of prosciutto to each side of the English muffin — two slices on each muffin side is good, but I love the stuff, so add as much or as little as you like. You can substitute Canadian bacon here, too.

Next, prepare the eggs. If you want to poach them for a traditional benedict style, go head. I prepped them sunny-side up, using some of those silicone rings so they came out perfectly round on the edges. You’ll want one egg per English muffin side. Use the non-stick spray or olive oil in the pan with the eggs.

Place the eggs on top of the Prosciutto, and then spoon 1-2 tablespoons of pesto over each egg. Jarred pesto is completely acceptable, but of course, make the homemade version if you wish. You can even make it the night before to quicken the morning process. If the yolk is visible, put the pesto over the yolk — hence, green eggs and ham. And voila!

Don’t be afraid to add more pesto to the eggs or on the plate. You can also add a slice of cheese under the ham, or maybe a few asparagus spears there to crank up the green factor. It’s an easy dish, so make it yours!

I served it with coffee and a side of home fries, just the frozen kind that I threw into a skillet with some olive oil and cajun seasoning. Nothing fancy, but it sure was scrumptious! Take that, Sam-I-am!

Stranger Love.

Could I find love at the gold kiosk?

Could I find love at the gold kiosk?

A 10-minute drive gets me to work for my part-time job at the mall. I take the same route, park in the same area of the lot, and I walk the same path to the shoe store where I work 4-5 times each week.
On my way into work, I walk by one of those kiosks that sell gold jewelry. Nearly every single time, the guy working the kiosk says hello to me.

Well, it’s more like, “Hey…’sup?”

At first, I didn’t register that it was a regular occurrence until recently. Some days, I’m hustling in, walking as quickly as possible in order to clock in on time.

Other days, I’m taking a leisurely stroll, carrying my pink owl lunchbox, because I’m just a little childish.

No matter what, the guy — let’s call him Goldman — says hi to me.

It was a rainy day when I started looking at Goldman a little differently. I didn’t feel like being sociable and the last thing I wanted to do was go to work. I shuffled my usual path and made an effort to avoid Goldman’s gaze.

But he’d gotten out of his chair and into my path, to deliver his greeting.

According to my estimate, Goldman stands about average height. He’s mastered the art of the scruff, and he’s usually wearing a hat, a white tee, and jeans.

But he’s got that swag. He seems effortlessly cool.

Enter: the stranger crush.

According to Urban Dictionary, a stranger crush is, “a crush on someone you see all the time, but do not actually know personally. Their name may be known, but they are usually referred to by some sort of nickname.”

There’s no way I’d notice Goldman if he didn’t force his kindness upon me nearly every day. Not because there’s nothing to notice about him, probably just because I’m usually stuck in my own world, with earbuds in.

When you think about it, stranger crushes happen quite often; it’s what makes waiters and bartenders attractive for an hour (I’ve been both, so don’t take offense to it).

I’d argue to say there’s plenty of stranger crushes happening in college classrooms, apartment complex hallways, and vacation spots, worldwide.

Yesterday, as I approached Goldman’s kiosk, I told myself that I should just stop and ask him what his name is. At least then I could address him properly.

But I opted out of it.

That’s the whole allure of the stranger crush: there’s so much unknown.

I don’t even know his name, how old he is, or any part of his story. Right now, in my mind, he’s perfect. Knowing any fact about him could shatter that fantasy, and it’d make going to work that much shittier.

Perhaps Goldman has a stranger crush on me, too. He doesn’t know my name or where I work, although I’m sure he’s narrowed it down to our wing of the mall.

On the other hand, maybe he’s a complete psycho who’s playing the numbers game to get laid by passersby in the mall. That’s the thing about stranger crushes — you just never know.

A coworker of mine stopped by Goldman’s kiosk to buy some studs for her boyfriend. I told her about my nano-attraction to him.

“He seems really nice,” she said. “I mean, he gave me a $30 pair of earrings for, like, $10.”

Pic of the Week.

My pic(s) of the week this time just HAD to be about Hangout Fest, since I haven’t even been back home from it for 24 hours! It was a weekend in Gulf Shores, full of fun, sun, sand (it was even in my hair), fried food, drinks, and of course: music!

I will admit, I was really, really sad when Sam Smith didn’t end up making it for his time slot because of vocal chord surgery, but I still enjoyed the acts I did see. Some of the most impressive ones were Paramore, Tove Lo, Skrillex, and Beck.

Aside from the music, Hangout Fest is always full of cool, super-nice people. My friend and I met lots of people on the shuttle rides to and from the festival each day, and we had some particular fun with a group of guys we met that had traveled all the way from New York for the weekend. So, shout out to our new friends Dan, Tim, Chad “JC”, and Doug from New York (with fantastic accents), and also a HELLO to our people from South Atlanta, Jill and Cam! I can’t forget the groups from Buzz in Kansas City! You all made the weekend a great one.

As it goes with these types of things, I get really caught up in the moment and I don’t want to be “that person” with my phone glued to my side. So, unfortunately there aren’t a ton of pictures — but I’ve posted the ones I’ve got. If you’re on Instagram, head on over to my page @OrangeJulius to see videos from the Beck and Skrillex performances.

I made my fellow Hangout Fest-goer and I my custom “Koncert Kits” (available in my Etsy Shop), and they pretty much saved us, from the spare sheets of toilet paper to the hand sanitizer, and okay, the glow sticks and glitter! If you’re heading to an outdoor music fest this summer, I’d highly recommend getting yourself one.

At this point, I feel like I need to post this blog so I can face reality and get back to work — it’s not easy going from the good, beach festival life to the one sitting in front of a computer, but I suppose it’s got to be done. Hope y’all have a fantastic week!

Celeb crush: Nick Jonas.

Well, helloooo!

Well, helloooo!

Good morning! If you’re in need of a “Hot Guy” does, I’m your gal. If you’re new to the blog, welcome. The Bitter Lemon has been providing pictures of hot dudes for those in need since 2010.

My latest celeb crush is Nick Jonas. Truth be told, I never aid a bit of attention to this guy (I think Joe was originally my favorite Jonas Brother… he’s the one with the long hair??), until pictures from this photo shoot surfaced.

Can I just say…. DAMN THAT BOY IS FWINE.

Nick started his solo career in the last year, after the Jonas Brothers split in 2012. He’s since release two singles, “Jealous” and “Chains”… which get stuck in my head very easily.

He’s remained in the positive spotlight, for the most part, but check out this little ditty I found on Wiki:

Singer and actress Miley Cyrus has stated that she dated Jonas from June 2006 to December 2007. Cyrus claimed they were “in love” and began dating soon after they first met. The song “Wedding Bells” by the Jonas Brothers was written by Nick. It was rumored that the song was based on his past relationship with Cyrus who, at the time of the song’s release, was engaged to Liam Hemsworth.

Umm, what?

He’s currently dating Miss Universe Olivia Culpo, and they seem to be completely in love. Aww.

Meanwhile, I’m obsessed with this song:

Singletons do Baby Showers.

I'm done with baby showers. #SorryNotSorry

I’m done with baby showers. #SorryNotSorry

Last weekend, I drove the 800 miles to my home state of Indiana. I was invited to a baby shower for one of my best friends; a girl I’ve known since 6th grade.

In December, I offered to host a shower for her, but she told me it would be easier for her other friends to host it.

Her other friends owned homes and were married. I felt like all of the sudden, I wasn’t welcome; my lifestyle was seen as a failure, even by someone who’s known me most of my life.

I felt weird that I couldn’t help my friend celebrate one of the biggest moments of her life, but I also didn’t want to stick my nose where it wasn’t welcome.

I RSVP’d to the shower, and drove the 12 hours to get there. I arrived with another friend and my mom. At the shower, there were the two hostesses, my friend having the baby, and her mom.

I kept waiting for more guests to arrive, but no one ever did. We ate, played games, opened gifts, and reminisced on the old days.

While it was great to see my friend, I started wondering where our friendship was headed. We had tons of great memories together, but when would we really start being friends who celebrate our adult lives together?

I sat there, grinning through conversation I know nothing about: bottle nipples, breathable bedding, and baby baths. I felt like my friend had moved on, and I was left behind.

I was hurt; I felt like I was losing a friend, when it would really just take a little extra work to keep our friendship going.

I had to go to a second baby shower that afternoon, so I’m sure I looked like a giant jerk when I left the shower early. But I also felt confused as to why I was one of three guests at a shower that I wasn’t allowed to host.

I would have rather taken my friend to dinner, given her my gifts, and had a real conversation about her son on the way.

But my friend and I had no other plans to visit each other while I was in town, and I’m not sure when we’ll see each other again. The shower felt awkward, and I cried as soon as I walked out of the door. It felt like a big goodbye.

I know I’m pretty clueless when it comes to kids, and I really hate it when they cry. And yes, I’m single with no guy in sight. But does that mean I can’t have mom friends? It’s becoming a clear reality.

A friend of mine suggested that maybe there’s just a crossroads in life when we move on from our childhood friends and have the friends we’ve made as adults.

As sad as it is for me to admit, maybe she’s right. I have no idea what it’s like to be a mom, and perhaps I never will.

It’s the Great Divide of adulthood: parents vs. non-parents.

The day after the shower, I celebrated the freedom I have of not being a mom, with eggs benedict and bloody Marys.

It seems like every time I go “home,” something big has changed. But I know life is moving however it’s supposed to, and of course, I’m happy for my friend and her growing family.

I don’t know if I’ll go in that direction, but I’m enjoying my time as a singleton, nonetheless.

If you don’t see me around any baby showers for awhile, please don’t take it personal. Chances are, I’m just accepting the fact that I’m in a different club — and I don’t want to get in trouble for my potty mouth.

Still at it: online dating.

Are the times changing, even with online dating?

Are the times changing, even with online dating?

I’m SURE you heard all the hooplah in the last few weeks: Hilary Duff joined Tinder.

I suppose the real craziness over The Duff joining Tinder — I swear I heard this news at least a dozen times — is that she is actually taking it seriously, and is actively going on dates.

I have incredibly mixed feelings about this, and I know I’m probably just going to come across as a crazy person, but it’s a risk I’m willing to take. For starters, it makes me really sad to wrap my head around the fact that a gorgeous, talented, celebrity such as Hilary Duff is having to stoop to Tinder to meet people/get laid/get a date, etc.

On the other hand, I’m sure she’s just doing it to have fun and I kind of hate it when we all freak out over celebrities doing “normal” things like sitting at home swiping away right before a new episode of Intervention.

Anyway, I only bring this up because I realize I’ve been talking a lot about online dating lately. And because of that, I’ve been hearing a lot from YOU guys about your experiences in the online dating world — I love hearing your stories!

But what your stories have shown me is that even a world that was once thought of as so modern and unconventional, like online dating, even has it’s changes, but it also is rooted in our antiquated ways, as humans.

Think about it. We’ve heard it before — all of this technology isn’t making us any better at communication, and we could assume this theory is equally true for the dating world. If a person can’t communicate via voice, they probably can’t communicate by email, text, or social media.

When it comes to “typical” dating, we have a lot of questions: when is it okay to call the person? How often should I text? When should the relationship progress physically? Blah, blah, blah…

The thing is, there are just as many (if not more) questions in the online dating world. Just because we’ve figured out the technology, doesn’t mean we’ve figured out the actual dating part.

Since my date about a month ago with a guy from Ok Cupid, I’ve checked my messages a whopping ONE time. I stopped logging into Glimpse altogether.

While I’m not giving up on it, it’s safe to say I’m taking a small break, partly because other areas of my life have taken over, and partly due to the fact that when you think about it, there’s just too many questions.

Fresh Friday: Very Irresistible.

Can YOU resist Givenchy's  Very Irresistible?

Can YOU resist Givenchy’s Very Irresistible?

Well y’all, we’ve survived yet another week! There are times when I just can’t believe I’ll get through another busy week, and then Friday rolls in like nothing else. A week from today I’ll be on the beach at Hangout Fest, so I’m keeping my eye on the prize!

This week’s Fresh Friday scent profile is on Givenchy’s Very Irresistible — an homage to Givenchy’s early days, when cinema and fashion inspired each other.

As described by Sephora, “Very Irrésistible Givenchy unites the elegant tradition of French style with the energy and pop-culture pizzazz of American film. Bursting with roses and infused with star anise, and verbena leaf, Very Irrésistible Givenchy is a fresh departure from the traditional floral fragrance.”

This perfume for women features notes of Centifolia Rose, Peony Rose, Fantasia Rose, Passion Rose, Emotion Rose, Verbena Leaf, and Star Anise.

As you can tell, Very Irresistible is a very floral scent, and even has a touch of powdery softness that’s incredible feminine. This perfume is definitely glamourous!

I hope you all have a fantastic, relaxing weekend, and don’t forget to show mom just how much you care on Sunday!

8/50 Shades: Sunset Angora.

Rockin' the Angora Sunset.

Rockin’ the Sunset Angora.

I’m continuing on my journey to discovering the perfect pink lipstick — The One that I can always count on; the one I toss in my purse when I’m on the go and in a hurry to look fabulous. This is not much different than my hunt for the perfect nude nail polish.

My mom is in town visiting this week, and in honor of Mother’s Day on Sunday, I asked her to help me with this review. She said pinks never work for her — she doesn’t think her teeth are white enough (that’s what I always think when I wear a red lip).

So my mom tried L’Oreal Colour Riche in Sunset Angora (#176). She liked that it was “corally” instead of a true pink, and noted that it was very creamy upon application. Score!

I’ve used two of the Color Riche shades before: Blushing Sequin and Pink Cashmere, both of which were long-lasting and provided bold color.

What do you look for when shopping for the right lipstick?

About that spark…

'Cause baby you're a firework...

‘Cause baby you’re a firework…

I’ve been on OK Cupid for almost a year. It’s not my favorite way to meet a potential boyfriend, but I just look at it as having another stick in the fire.

A few weeks ago, I met up with guy no. four from Ok Cupid. We messaged for a few weeks before meeting face-to-face, but the messages were short. He said he really liked to just get to it and meet the person before getting into any serious conversations via online messaging.

I really appreciated that — no sense in wasting time.

So, we met at Nino’s, where he had a reservation.

He was definitely the same person in his picture (always a plus), and we had a really nice dinner. Over wine, salad, and seafood, we talked for hours.

On paper, it was a pretty perfect date. He was polite, the food was great, the atmosphere was a little romantic, we had plenty to talk about, and we laughed a lot.

But I didn’t get that feeling. I wasn’t sitting there wishing he’d kiss me at the end of the night.

This isn’t the first time this has happened to me, and I’ve noticed it’s a pattern when it comes to the men I meet online.

When you message someone online, it’s impossible to tell if there’s going to be a physical spark once you actually meet in person.

The thing is, I was really disappointed when I didn’t feel that spark! As we were eating, I was thinking to myself, “Holly, this is the type of guy you should be dating.”

He’s smart, in shape, has a good job, goals, and he seemed to have good, genuine intentions.

I think some of my friends mistook the lack of spark for superficiality, which isn’t true. But while physical attraction isn’t everything in a relationship, it is a part of it.

And, I’m well-aware that I’ve dated men who are in no way conventionally hot, but I’ve found them to be very hot and the sparks flew.

I’m not superficial, but if you think sexual chemistry, or that physical connection isn’t vital to a relationship, you’re denying our nature as humans. We were created to have sex. Period.

At the end of the day, I want to be dating someone that I just cannot wait to make out with. Is that horrible? Yes, I’m hoping to connect with someone intellectually, but it has to be there, physically.

“Don’t you hate it when that happens?” My gym buddy could relate to me.

Yes, I hate it so much I almost feel guilty for feeling this way.

Truthfully, I’ve yet to feel a spark with anyone I’ve met online. There are times when I wonder if something is wrong with me. But instead of dwelling on it, I always tell myself that perhaps the person just deserves another chance.

A spark can grow over time, right?

I usually go on a second date with the person (if they ask, of course) to see if there’s something there or not.

After the dinner at Nino’s, we hugged goodbye, and when he got home, he sent me a text saying he had a good time.

I never heard from him after that, and I wonder if he felt the same way I did. It was a great date by the looks of it, but maybe missing that vital part of what makes a relationship exciting.

And it’s okay if he didn’t feel it, either. Because everyone deserves that feeling; that spark of something new and promising.

Pic of the Week.

Roooooooad trip!

Roooooooad trip!

I spent a decent amount of my weekend driving to and from Indiana. I got up Friday morning around 3am and drove the 12 hours to Bloomington, spent Saturday attending baby showers, treated myself to a day of Sunday drinking, and hit the road Monday morning at 4:30 to make it back to Baton Rouge.

It’s been YEARS since I’ve made the drive from Louisiana to Indiana, and I always get a similar feeling when I do it — I’m excited for it when I hit the road, and then about 10 miles into the trip, I realize it’s a long road ahead. Literally.

The cool thing about road trips, though, is that they have this weird ability to temporarily free you from your problems, as you’re driving away from them. It gave me a chance to listen to a ton of music, catch up on old episodes of Johnjay & Rich, and I even listened to a few chapters of an audio book (“How to be Single” by Liz Tuccillo).

Although it was an exhausting drive, it’s a little thrilling to know that if I ever wanted to, I could totally get to Indy in 12 hours and spend a weekend with my friends.

It probably comes as no surprise that I don’t visit Indiana that often. Usually once a year, maybe twice if I’m up for it. And even though I haven’t officially lived there in 10 years, Indiana has this incredible way of delivering life lessons to me — sometimes in the form of a beautifully painted sunset.

It seems like every time I go back to the Midwest, the people I once knew so well have changed. Some for the better, some for the worse, and it always lends a little perspective.

On Sunday, I joined my best friend for brunch before we packed a picnic and ventured to the Indianapolis Museum of Art’s 100 Acre Park to see “Funky Bones” — an outdoor art installation featured in “The Fault in Our Stars.”

It was the simplest day: Bloody Marys, a picnic in a park, a dog, a few pieces of art, and a beautiful sky. It’s the best reminder of why we’re here. These are the moments to live for.

It’s not often (at all) that I get a day off from working; lately I can’t even seem to get five consecutive sleep each night. But I was also reminded of why I work — so I can afford to appreciate the road trips, the days off, and the bottles of wine (heh).

Growing up sure is tough at times, but we’re all doing it, right? Perhaps not willingly, but I think of growing pains are starting to fade.

Things I’ve Learned from ‘Girls’

The cast of HBO's "Girls"

The cast of HBO’s “Girls”

I don’t have HBO (not yet, at least), but I kept hearing about how awesome “Girls” was… I had to see it for myself. So, I asked for it for Christmas, and I got the first two seasons on DVD. I started watching it immediately, and I finished both seasons in probably three days.

And just when you thought you couldn’t learn anything from watching TV, I’m here to prove you wrong, my friend. Here’s a few things I’ve learned from watching “Girls” — well, so far:

  • Everyone has a battle. Right in the pilot, one of the main characters, Hannah, loses her job (or her internship) and she gets cut off from her parents. So, she’s 24, living in New York, with no money. The struggle is real.
  • There’s that guy. At first I hated the character of Adam, because he treated Hannah like absolute shit. He reminded me of a few of my exes. Buuut, over the episodes, I’ve come to like him.
  • No one’s getting THE emails. I relate to Hannah the most because, well, she’s an aspiring writer, she’s got a decent case of OCD, and she constantly makes the WRONG decision. One thing I do when I read a great book is contact the writer anyway possible and tell them how great it was. Sometimes, I get a reply and it’s really nice, and other times I don’t hear back at all. It’s not about the reply; I just want the writer to know their work had an impact on me in some way. There’s a scene in season one when Hannah runs into a former professor of hers, and she tells him she was going to email him regarding his latest book, but she figured he already got a ton of “those” emails. “No one’s getting enough of those emails,” he tells her. Spread positive words, folks!
  • A significant relationship can last two days. In season two, Hannah meets a guy at the coffee shop and ends up at his house (to apologize for dumping the coffee shop trash in his trashcan). She goes inside, they talk, they have sex, and she stays there for two days. And then she passes out in his shower and shit gets weird, she leaves, and they never talk again. PREACH.
  • Abortions and miscarriages, they happen. Right in season one, we find out that Jessa is pregnant and she wants an abortion. While I’m not throwing abortion parties, I do appreciate the fact that a popular TV show had this as a main portion of its plot, because these things do happen, no matter what you believe. Her friends were there for her; and nature stepped in, anyway.

Where There’s Smoke…

Oh, hiiiiii.

Oh, hiiiiii.

There’s something sexy about a man in uniform. I’m not a huge fan of cops, but I’ll take a soldier or a sailor any day.

Uniforms are hot, but I think it’s more about a man putting his life on the line for the community, or the country, that really turns me on.

As a result, you can imagine my surprise and delight when a firefighter walked into the shoe store where I work last week.

“Hey, you look just like Emma Stone,” he said. “Actually, you’re much prettier than her.”

Now this was just getting embarrassing.

Of course, I didn’t know he was a firefighter right away. But he was very attractive.

He started asking me what there was to do around town. Given that I’m usually selling shoes or hunkered over my computer at home, I’m probably the wrong person to ask.

But I gave him a few suggestions, all of which included live music and drinks.

He said he was in town from Austin, for a firefighter’s convention. His name was Robert.

“Firefighters go to conventions?” I asked.

He acted as if that was something I should already know, and suggested I call him when I got off work.

He gave me his card. I told him it was nice to meet him.

For the remainder of my shift, I wondered if I should actually call or text Robert.

After all, he was hot, a firefighter, seemed nice, and was only in town for a few days (read: no strings attached).

A fling could be good for me, I thought.

The next day, I was back at work, organizing a jewelry rack, when I saw Robert had returned. He was chatting it up with my gorgeous, blonde manager.

“What’s there to do around here?” he asked her.

My jaw dropped, and she quickly told him she had a boyfriend.

Robert turned, saw me watching the entire exchange, and merely said, “Oh, hey Holly.”

I gave a half-smile.

Seriously?

There are days when I leave my apartment feeling on-point; feeling like I’m looking pretty cute. But I know I can’t compare to someone with a model body or the makeup and hair of Kim Kardashian.

I do my own hair and makeup, I try to stay slim, and I wear jeans and graphic tees. The day Robert came in, I was wearing a shirt that said, “Coffee Saves Lives,” a personal belief.

My friends always say, “But you’re the kind of girl someone actually wants to be with.”

And just when I feel okay, a guy like Robert shatters my small collection of confidence.

I get it. He was in town for a weekend and was looking for some fun. I can’t blame the guy.

But at the very least, have some decency to hit on ladies that work in different stores. There’s a whole mall to explore, dude!

If I hadn’t seen him hitting on my coworker, I wouldn’t have thought anything about us having a fling. I probably would’ve taken a shot of vodka and decided Robert was a saint.

But that’s not what happened, and in some form, Robert did me a favor.

When he left the store, I told my manager what happened.

“Oh no, girl,” she said. “He was a loser.”

We both laughed and that was that.

But don’t worry, I haven’t given up on firefighters, or any man in uniform for that matter.

I’m just hoping I can meet my firefighter in the movie-kind of way. My apartment complex has a restaurant attached, so the building’s smoke alarm goes off on the regular.

Maybe I’ll finally get rescued.

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