A question...
So I'm leaving for Boston tomorrow and then I'll be back in Springfield Saturday night. Since I'm home, I'll probably go to church with my dad on Sunday. Is it bad that the pants I brought to wear to church are the same pants that I was wearing when I wrestled in a kiddie pool of alcohol?

It's just a thought that crossed my mind.


Things I Love...
not having to go to school, getting things done, shoe shopping, reading updates on people's blogs, my best friend, this time of year, my job, running on the katy trail, my new laptop, waking up early, going to the berg, being crafty, honey wheat pretzels and rasberry lemonade crystal light, flying, a clean apartment, driving in my car with the windows down, pictures, birthdays, the smell of gasoline, flip flops, getting mail (the real kind), yellow flowers, the color green, scary movies, talking to old friends, carmex, plain m&m's, conan o'brien, thunderstorms at night, reading away messages, clinique happy heart...

Things I Hate...
feet, onions, peppers and tomatoes, driving over bridges, saying goodbye, my loud next-door neighbors, coffee, people who aren't friendly, sour candy, my hair when it rains, being lazy, people who are too dependent on others, chapped lips, dark chocolate, putting on makeup, fried chicken, grocery shopping, too much pink, cats, people who try and pretend they're something they're not, sappy movies, being hot, losing touch with friends...


Done and done.
It is true, I am an official college graduate. Suprisingly enough, it feels a whole lot like being a college student. I don't think that it will really set in until a) I have to leave Columbia or b) Fall rolls around and I don't have to go to school. Until then, I'm job searching...sort of.

About a month ago I came across a job posting at the New England Center for Children. It just so happens that I was looking at this same school last summer, but never really followed through with anything. Well after I found out that I didn't get Teach for America, I began looking for jobs. The NECC post was one of the first postings I came across. So I sort of believe it was fate or destiny or a sign from someone, and so I jumped on the opportunity and applied. In the process I also convinced Therese to apply and now we are both flying to Boston on Thursday to interview.

In my ideal world, we will both get hired, move to Boston in July or August, work, eventually go to grad school and then move back to the midwest in like 5 years. I really have my heart set on moving somewhere cool, new and exciting. If this doesn't work out I'm going to be very disappointed. I haven't really looked into other options, partially because I really don't want to do anything else. If I have to move home and live with my mom and Dennis I think I may just crawl in a hole and never come out. Until then I'm going to prepare like crazy for this interview.


In the spirit of conformity and nostalgia I've decided to compile a list of my most memorable Mizzou moments. Most are crazy drunken nights, others are more sentimental, and some are just things that I would like to have on record so I can reminisce in 10 years about my college years. They are in not particular order, I hope you enjoy.

-Crazy Christina: everything from the day she moved in to her temporary (or many not so temporary) insanity

-The huge party Pear Tree party our freshman year with kegs at every garage.

-My first (and only) time a George's. Long Island Iced Teas are never a good idea.

-The KKC crew: Even though most of us have gone our separate ways, Cramer 2 will always be close to my heart.

-Ben Harper/Jack Johnson concert: Good times with Therese, my bro and her little sister.

-Poverty Party my sophomore year (the night before ZTA initiation). After drinking all night long, I went to the new member sleepover and had to say the creed (with slu's help)

-My 20th Birthday party at 1504 Ross St. A random t-shirt party will never steer you in the wrong direction.

-ZTA Recruitment 2003: I've never experienced so many emotions in one week.

-Bid Day 2003 Party at Maggie's: Those were the fun days of Zeta. Probably my favorite ZTA "function" ever.

-Spring Break 2004: South Padre Island was great, considering we planned the trip in about a week. (Also, my first beer bonging experience)

-Mizzou football games: Mostly just the tailgating part. (However, the Nebraska win was probably the best football game I've ever seen)

-Poverty Party my Jr. year: We all drank a lot, but Danna was beyond gone and I had to play mom and cut her off at one point.

-Going to Anne's house on the Lake with Becky, A-hole, Elizabeth, Anne, Cory, Reid, Chris, Andrea and Amanda: My first real trip to the lake and it was definitely well worth it.

-Thanksgiving Dinner 2004: Even though we opted for chicken instead of turkey, it was still a huge success and no one left with food poisoning.

-Parties at Anthony St: There were several, but the highlight would have to be wrestling in a kiddie pool with Coulter, Ekey and Blythe. (Notable mention to the Gonzo party, striper and all)

-Greek Week 2005: All of it (especially Jamie, Phinney and Megan), but in particular the "initiation" night when we found out our committees, drank a bottle of vodka and then went to Harpo's. (Did I mention I had a test the next day?)

-Greek Week 2005 (part 2): Announcements on the steps of Jesse (both nights) and the craziness that lead up to it and followed.

-Studying with Ashley for all of our tests: Add a wonderful study guide, some flashcards and skittles and we are good to go. (Four classes with one person will do that to you)

-Studying with Coulter: Even though we never really got much accomplished, we at least pretended to be studious.

-Road trips: There were many including 2 trips to Minnesota, KC and STL several times, South Padre Island for Spring Break and the latest to Omaha

-My roommates: I've had a ton and each one has taught me something. Here's to Christina, Andrea, Addie, Amy, Coulter, Ashley, Brittany, Claire, Danna and Lori.

-Thursday nights at Harpo's: While I know I was a little late in catching on to the Thursday night trend, I enjoyed the face time just as much as everyone else.

-These past 2 weeks: There's really not just one thing that stands out, I've just had a lot of fun and I think I've successfully taken in my last moments as an official college student.


Mixed Emotions...

The question used to be, “What are you doing after you graduate?” Now the question is “How do you feel about graduating?” The honest answer is I have no idea. I don’t think that it has hit yet that in12 days I will have completed my undergraduate career and that in a little less than a month I may be packing up all of my things and leaving Columbia for good. So much has happened within the past 4 years to shape who I am today and I have no idea how any other life experience could ever top what has happened here at Mizzou. Right before graduating high school had the same sort of feelings, but I was very idealistic in that I thought all of my friends and I would keep in touch and that every time I went home it would be just like old times. Now that none of that has come true, I find leaving college a little harder. Who will I really keep in touch with? What will happen to all of the amazing people whom I have met these past years? What will it be like to come back and visit this place I have grown so accustomed to? How will my experiences here shape who and what I am in the future? I don’t even know what my future holds right now. I have dreams of where I would like things to go, but at times I think I’m too scared to fully realize them. A friend and I were talking about graduation not too long ago and I shared with her that I was really apprehensive about the whole thing because I don’t have a definite plan once they hand me my diploma. She looked at me and said, “Do something that you’ve never had the courage to do before.” I took her words of wisdom very seriously and decided to really follow a dream that I started developing last summer. Who knows if it will all pan out, but at least I have the courage to try new things. I want to know that I can make it on my own and moving back to Springfield and living with my mom and Dennis will only stifle the independence I have created for myself here. My mom wants me to be practical and to look at the whole picture. I plan on doing that to the fullest extent, but I have a feeling that my “whole picture” and her’s are two completely different things. I’ve been safe and practical and responsible my entire life. Why not take a chance at something new and exciting and see what I can make of things for myself.

So, for those of you wondering how I feel about graduating, that’s just a glimpse of what’s going through my head on an hourly basis. At times I feel like I’ve lead you all to believe that I have it all figured out. That’s just a front; I’m scared to death. And while I’ve always been one to leave emotions out of things, count on a few tears before all of this is said and done.


I was reading my friend Jon's blog this morning and he had this posted. I thought I would share...

Ode to the Nice Guys
This rant was written for the Wharton Undergraduate Journal

This is a tribute to the nice guys. The nice guys that finish last, that never become more than friends, that endure hours of whining and bitching about what assholes guys are, while disproving the very point. This is dedicated to those guys who always provide a shoulder to lean on but restrain themselves to tentative hugs, those guys who hold open doors and give reassuring pats on the back and sit patiently outside the changing room at department stores. This is in honor of the guys that obligingly reiterate how cute/beautiful/smart/funny/sexy their female friends are at the appropriate moment, because they know most girls need that litany of support. This is in honor of the guys with open minds, with laid-back attitudes, with honest concern. This is in honor of the guys who respect a girl’s every facet, from her privacy to her theology to her clothing style.

This is for the guys who escort their drunk, bewildered female friends back from parties and never take advantage once they’re at her door, for the guys who accompany girls to bars as buffers against the rest of the creepy male population, for the guys who know a girl is fishing for compliments but give them out anyway, for the guys who always play by the rules in a game where the rules favor cheaters, for the guys who are accredited as boyfriend material but somehow don’t end up being boyfriends, for all the nice guys who are overlooked, underestimated, and unappreciated, for all the nice guys who are manipulated, misled, and unjustly abandoned, this is for you.

This is for that time she left 40 urgent messages on your cell phone, and when you called her back, she spent three hours painstakingly dissecting two sentences her boyfriend said to her over dinner. And even though you thought her boyfriend was a chump and a jerk, you assured her that it was all ok and she shouldn’t worry about it. This is for that time she interrupted the best killing spree you’d ever orchestrated in GTA3 to rant about a rumor that romantically linked her and the guy she thinks is the most repulsive person in the world. And even though you thought it was immature and you had nothing against the guy, you paused the game for two hours and helped her concoct a counter-rumor to spread around the floor. This is also for that time she didn’t have a date, so after numerous vows that there was nothing “serious” between the two of you, she dragged you to a party where you knew nobody, the beer was awful, and she flirted shamelessly with you, justifying each fit of reckless teasing by announcing to everyone: “oh, but we’re just friends!” And even though you were invited purely as a symbolic warm body for her ego, you went anyways. Because you’re nice like that.

The nice guys don’t often get credit where credit is due. And perhaps more disturbing, the nice guys don’t seem to get laid as often as they should. And I wish I could logically explain this trend, but I can’t. From what I have observed on campus and what I have learned from talking to friends at other schools and in the workplace, the only conclusion I can form is that many girls are just illogical, manipulative bitches. Many of them claim they just want to date a nice guy, but when presented with such a specimen, they say irrational, confusing things such as “oh, he’s too nice to date” or “he would be a good boyfriend but he’s not for me” or “he already puts up with so much from me, I couldn’t possibly ask him out!” or the most frustrating of all: “no, it would ruin our friendship.” Yet, they continue to lament the lack of datable men in the world, and they expect their too-nice-to-date male friends to sympathize and apologize for the men that are jerks. Sorry, guys, girls like that are beyond my ability to fathom. I can’t figure out why the connection breaks down between what they say (I want a nice guy!) and what they do (I’m going to sleep with this complete ass now!). But one thing I can do, is say that the nice-guy-finishes-last phenomenon doesn’t last forever. There are definitely many girls who grow out of that train of thought and realize they should be dating the nice guys, not taking them for granted. The tricky part is finding those girls, and even trickier, finding the ones that are single.

So, until those girls are found, I propose a toast to all the nice guys. You know who you are, and I know you’re sick of hearing yourself described as ubiquitously nice. But the truth of the matter is, the world needs your patience in the department store, your holding open of doors, your party escorting services, your propensity to be a sucker for a pretty smile. For all the crazy, inane, absurd things you tolerate, for all the situations where you are the faceless, nameless hero, my accolades, my acknowledgement, and my gratitude go out to you. You do have credibility in this society, and your well deserved vindication is coming.

Ode to the Nice Girls
This rant was written because a nice girl finally snapped.

I've read the tribute to the nice guys; this is my response.

This is my tribute to the nice girls. To the nice girls who are overlooked, who become friends and nothing more, who spend hours fixating upon their looks and their personalities and their actions because it must be they that are doing something wrong. This is for the girls who don't give it up on the first date, who don't want to play mind games, who provide a comforting hug and a supportive audience for a story they've heard a thousand times. This is for the girls who understand that they aren't perfect and that the guys they're interested in aren't either, for the girls who flirt and laugh and worry and obsess over the slightest glance, whisper, touch, because somehow they are able to keep alive that hope that maybe... maybe this time he'll have understood. This is an homage to the girls who laugh loud and often, who are comfortable in skirts and sweats and combat boots, who care more than they should for guys who don't deserve their attention. This is for those girls who have been in the trenches, who have watched other girls time and time again fake up and make up and fuck up the guys in their lives without saying a word. This is for the girls who have been there from the beginning and have heard the trite words of advice, from "there are plenty of fish in the sea," to "time heals all wounds." This is to honor those girls who know that guys are just as scared as they are, who know that they deserve better, who are seeking to find it.

This is for the girls who have never been in love, but know that it's an experience that they don't want to miss out on. For the girls who have sought a night with friends and been greeted by a night of catcalling, rude comments and explicit invitations that they'd rather not have experienced. This is for the girls who have spent their weekends sitting on the sidelines of a beer pong tournament or a case race, or playing Florence Nightingale for a vomiting guy friend or a comatose crush, who have received a drunk phone call just before dawn from someone who doesn't care enough to invite them over but is still willing to pass out in their bed. This is for the girls who have left sad song lyrics in their away messages, who have tried to make someone understand through a subliminally appealing profile, who have time and time again dropped their male friend hint after hint after hint only to watch him chase after the first blonde girl in a skirt. This is for the girls who have been told that they're too good or too smart or too pretty, who have been given compliments as a way of breaking off a relationship, who have ever been told they are only wanted as a friend.

This one's for the girls who you can take home to mom, but won't because it's easier to sleep with a whore than foster a relationship; this is for the girls who have been led on by words and kisses and touches, all of which were either only true for the moment, or never real to begin with. This is for the girls who have allowed a guy into their head and heart and bed, only to discover that he's just not ready, he's just not over her, he's just not looking to be tied down; this is for the girls who believe the excuses because it's easier to believe that it's not that they don't want you, it's that they don't want anyone. This is for the girls who have had their hearts broken and their hopes dashed by someone too cavalier to have cared in the first place; this is for the nights spent dissecting every word and syllable and inflection in his speech, for the nights when you've returned home alone, for the nights when you've seen from across the room him leaning a little too close, or standing a little too near, or talking a little too softly for the girl he's with to be a random hookup. This is for the girls who have endured party after party in his presence, finally having realized that it wasn't that he didn't want a relationship: it was that he didn't want you. I honor you for the night his dog died or his grandmother died or his little brother crashed his car and you held him, thinking that if you only comforted him just right, or said the right words, or rubbed his back in the right way then perhaps he'd realize what it was that he already had. This is for the night you realized that it would never happen, and the sunrise you saw the next morning after failing to sleep.

This is for the "I really like you, so let's still be friends" comment after you read more into a situation than he ever intended; this is for never realizing that when you choose friends, you seldom choose those which make you cry yourself to sleep. This is for the hugs you've received from your female friends, for the nights they've reassured you that you are beautiful and intelligent and amazing and loyal and truly worthy of a great guy; this is for the despair you all felt as you sat in the aftermath of your tears, knowing that that night the only companionship you'd have was with a pillow and your teddy bear. This is for the girls who have been used and abused, who have endured what he was giving because at least he was giving something; this is for the stupidity of the nights we've believed that something was better than nothing, though his something was nothing we'd have ever wanted. This is for the girls who have been satisified with too little and who have learned never to expect anything more: for the girls who don't think that they deserve more, because they've been conditioned for so long to accept the scraps thrown to them by guys.

This is what I don't understand. Men sit and question and whine that girls are only attracted to the mean guys, the guys who berate them and belittle them and don't appreciate them and don't want them; who use them for sex and think of little else than where their next conquest will be made. Men complain that they never meet nice girls, girls who are genuinely interested and compelling, who are intelligent and sweet and smart and beautiful; men despair that no good women want to share in their lives, that girls play mindgames, that girls love to keep them hanging. Yet, men, I ask you: were you to meet one of these genuinely interested, thrillingly compelling, interesting and intelligent and sweet and beautiful and smart girls, were you to give her your number and wait for her to call... and if you were to receive a call from her the next day and she, in her truthful, loyal, intelligent and straightforward nice girl fashion, were to tell you that she finds you intriguing and attractive and interesting and worth her time and perhaps material from which she could fashion a boyfriend, would you or would you not immediately call your friends to tell them of the "stalker chick" you'd met the night prior, who called you and wore her heart on her sleeve and told the truth? And would you, or would you not, refuse to make plans with her, speak with her, see her again, and once again return to the bar or club or party scene and search once more for this "nice girl" who you just cannot seem to find? Because therein lies the truth, guys: we nice girls are everywhere. But you're not looking for a nice girl. You're not looking for someone genuinely interested in your intermural basketball game, or your anatomy midterm grade, or that argument you keep having with your father; you're looking for a quick fix, a night when you can pretend to have a connection with another human being which is just as disposable as the condom you were using during it.

So don't say you're on the lookout for nice girls, guys, when you pass us up on every step you take. Sometimes we go undercover; sometimes we go in disguise: sometimes when that girl in the low cut shirt or the too tight miniskirt won't answer your catcalls, sometimes you're looking at a nice girl in whore's clothing - - we might say we like the attention, we might blush and giggle and turn back to our friends, but we're all thinking the same thing: "This isn't me. Tomorrow morning, I'll be wearing a teeshirt and flannel shorts, I'll have slept alone and I'll be making my hungover best friend breakfast. See through the disguise. See me." You never do. Why? Because you only see the exterior, you only see the slutty girl who welcomes those advances. You don't want the nice girl.. so don't say you're looking for a relationship: relationships take time and energy and intent, three things we're willing to extend - - but in return, we're looking for compassion and loyalty and trust, three things you never seem willing to express. Maybe nice guys finish last, but in the race they're running they're chasing after the whores and the sluts and the easy-targets... the nice girls are waiting at the finish line with water and towels and a congradulatory hug (and yes, if she's a nice girl and she likes you, the sweatiness probably won't matter), hoping against hope that maybe you'll realize that they're the ones that you want at the end of that silly race.

So maybe it won't last forever. Maybe some of those guys in that race will turn in their running shoes and make their way to the concession stand where we're waiting; however, until that happens, we still have each other, that silly race to watch, and all the chocolate we can eat (because what's a concession stand at a race without some chocolate?)

By Jessica Leigh Griffith
Copyright 2004-2005 by Jessica Leigh Griffith