Liebster Award, Part II

Thanks to the wonderful Makena of Makena Granger, I am so excited to announce that I have once again been nominated for the Liebster Blogging Award! While, technically, I am unqualified to receive the award again, I’d like to participate anyways, because a) I appreciate the nomination so much, b)  it’s a nice formatted, fun, and easy way to kick start my summer blogging binge, and c) there are a few great new bloggers that I’d love to nominate.
Rule Recap:
Write 11 random facts about you, previously unbeknowst to followers.
Answer 11 questions asked by the blogger who nominated you.
Ask 11 questions of your own to your nominees.
Inform your nominees of their nominations.
Whew!
11 Random Facts: 
1) Three weeks ago, I graduated with a BA in English from Emory University. My honor’s thesis was entitled “Stone Walls Do Not a Prison Make: Regaining Agency through Narrative in Charlotte Bronte’s Villette and Jean Rhys’ Good Morning, Midnight.” I simultaneously love and loathe the thought of it, but despite our complicated relationship, I’m pretty damn proud of it.
2) I am out-of-control addicted to The Toast. Mallory Ortberg, the PhD student who edits the site, is my actual hero. Such a fantastic, witty, bizarre human!
3) I once went a solid 52 hours without sleep. I wouldn’t recommend it.
4) Every time I strike a conversation with a random stranger on an airplane, I invent a new name, travel reason, life story, you name it.
5) If I could have majored in Pun Studies, I would have.
6) Sometimes, late at night when the streets are fairly empty, I do grand jetés across the cross walk. Because it’s impossible to do grand jetés across a cross walk, and NOT be completely, incandescently happy.
7) True to form, I’m currently reading multiple books: Zami: A Biomythography by Audre Lorde, 1984 by George Orwell (yep, I dislike it as much as I remembered), and The Namesake by Jhumpa Lahiri.
8) I have one older sister who’s currently in her last year of vet school. Her exams test many life skills, including sheep flipping. She literally had to practice taking sheep by surprise and flipping them onto their sides…this is why I love life.
9) I care very deeply about oxford commas.
10) My favorite animal is the giant elephant shrew. It’s basically a tiny, fluffy anteater, and it is absolutely wonderful. The platypus is a close second. Long live strange mammals!
11) At home, I have a chinchilla named Sosuke, after a character in a Hayao Miyazaki movie.
Makena’s Questions:
1. Coffee or tea? 
Coffee, coffee, coffee!
2. Favorite magazine? 
If we’re including literary magazines, I’m obsessed with The Paris Review (We’ve been going steady for about a year and a half now, so I’d say this one’s here to stay). In addition to the beautiful and thought-provoking short stories and poems, its extensive interviews with writers set The Paris Review apart from its fellow lit magazines. You can also access an archive of past interviews dating back to the 1950s for free through their website. Pretty much hours of endless fun and also a great research tool if your interests veer towards the biographical (or rather auto-biographical). I got some great inspirational meat on Jean Rhys and writing trauma for my thesis from her 1979 interview (which is unfortunately still  only currently available in print).
3. What was the last movie you watched and what did you think of it? 
I saw Maleficent last night, and I a thousand percent loved it. It’s the kind of movie I loved so much, I would be willing to sit back down and re-watch immediately, if only my emotions had the stamina to handle it.  It won’t win any Oscars (insert mild grumbling against the Academy), but it told an engaging story with honesty, integrity, and emotional relevancy, which I personally find more important than cinematic pyrotechnics, Pulitzer-prize worthy dialogue etc. Re-tellings from the villains’ perspective have had an undeniable appeal for me since I first read Wide Sargasso Sea and an empowering re-telling of a female fairytale villain through the lens of trauma, revenge, and healing? Shit literally cannot get better than that, unless of course, you have Angelina Jolie swooping off into the sunset like a glorious, glorious fairy eagle. Which it does.
4. What is your guilty pleasure? 
80’s movies with great dance numbers- stuff like Footloose and Dirty Dancing. WHY CAN’T WE ALWAYS DANCE AND SING FOR NO APPARENT REASON. Ugh.
5. If you could tell your middle school self one thing, what would you say? 
Don’t be afraid of the sound of your own voice. Yes, words have power, and not everything you say is going to be perfect or earth-shattering or even correct. But what you have to say does matter. Also, lose the high-waisted pants as soon as possible, please.
6. Most recent awkward moment…
Oh gosh, there are just so many…
Most recently would be yesterday afternoon. I just recently moved into a new apartment complex, and attempted to go to the gym, armed with the four-digit access code. But when I had walked over, I realized that instead of the code, their was now a card-key access system. I was already pretty tired after work anyways, so I decided that it was a sign that the universe didn’t really want me to work out. But as I turned to go, this body-builder dude got up from whatever strange apparatus he was using and opened the door. So then I had to awkwardly explain that I had changed my mind and didn’t want to work out anymore, but thanks anyway. Then I ran away while he gave me a very confused look and proceeded to eat a whole tub of guacamole hummus while binging on Big Bang Theory.
I also told the ticket stub tearer at the movie theater “You too” after she said “Enjoy your movie.” Which, as everyone knows, is the absolute worst.
7. What is your cocktail of choice? 
Irish coffee! Not only is it the blessed combination of two of my favorite beverages on earth, it was also the first cocktail I ever drank, conveniently at the little pub where it was invented (now a museum) in the Irish countryside. Its like my Proust’s madeline- it always brings back memories (and you know, occasionally erases them haha).
8. What is your favorite new music discovery?
BANKS! I first heard her songs “Waiting Game,” “Before  I Ever Met You,” and “Warm Water” a few months ago and I have not been able to stop listening since. Every single song she writes (or covers) is perfect, and I am already counting the days until September, when she releases her first album.
9. If you could wear one item of jewelry for the rest of your life, what would it be?
I have this little silver ring from Mykonos, Greece that I rarely leave the house without. I first got one just like before my freshman year of high school on Mykonos, but somehow managed to lose it back in the States. My sister went back for her senior trip that May and surprised me with a new, identical ring from the same store on the island. Later, I also went back for my senior trip, so in a lot of ways, it reminds me of my first experiences with international travel, the really special and wonderful relationship that I have with my sister, and also all the amazing people that I grew up with at St. David’s through middle school and high school.
10. What is the cosmetic/beauty product you can’t live without? 
Loreal Colour Riche lip balm in coral-  my skin is so pale that most lipsticks tend to look overdone, but this particular one is natural enough that I can wear it during the day. Also, its light and balmy enough to not leave annoying lipstick stains on coffee cups.
11. You can take three items to a desert island…what do you take?
Assuming that there’s already food and fresh water on the island and I’m not condemning myself to eat the pages of my favorite novel, one by one, I would bring my well-worn Barnes and Noble classics copy of Jane Eyre, a pen, and blank paper. Pretty predictable, but I know I would lose my mind without words.
My Questions for Nominees:

1) What book has changed your life and why?

2) If you could live anywhere in the world, where would you choose and why?

3)If you could only eat one food for the rest of your life, what would it be?

4) Why did you start blogging?

5) If your life had a soundtrack, what songs would it include?

6) Who is your favorite celebrity/public figure to follow on Twitter?

7)  Coffee or tea?

8) What is your favorite word?

9) If you could select one person from history and have them truthfully answer one question, who would it be and what would you ask?

10) What is your favorite movie that you’re afraid to admit is your favorite movie?

11) Do you have a bucket list? If so, list three items from it. If not, make something up!

Nominees:
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