Monday, January 5, 2009

Why I will not be giving away a Wii

Today is a weird day. I waved goodbye to the last of my house guests this morning, leaving me alone for the first time in two weeks. After near fourteen days of gabbing non-stop in English, of cooking meals together, of watching youtube videos together, and of sharing late-night conversations in bed after the lights are out, the house suddenly feels a bit empty. I feel lost, like I don't remember how to entertain myself anymore, I can't remember how to speak French, and I don't know how to blog anymore. It was a good vacation, but coming down is always brutal.

On the other hand, today is a good day. It is an exciting day here at Diary of Why headquarters, and the reason for that is a number. I'll give you a hint- it's a positive integer that falls between 199 and 201 and it rhymes with 200th blog post!!!!!!!!! And in the interest of celebrating small and insignificant milestones, I thought, Hey, why not celebrate this small and insignificant milestone??? 200 posts ago today the Diary of Why was born, back when I was a lonely, single, impoverished grad student, with dreams of one day becoming a lonely, single, impoverished English language assistant glimmering distant on the horizon. Yes, in 200 posts so much can change, or nothing at all, and over here it's kind of a mixed bag, really. I'm a little older, hopefully a little wiser, I put my eye cream on every night and my moisturizer with UV protection on every morning. I'm still looking for someone, but I'm a little less hopeful about finding him. Though by now I should be immune to it, I do still get hurt, but now I'm a little less surprised when it happens. Becoming older and wiser and more life-hardened isn't all doom and gloom though
(because it really is starting to sound dire over here). On the plus side, I don't take things for granted anymore. I value the friendships I have made and maintained through the years, and I am grateful that I can live in a country that I love, for whatever length of time, that I can travel. I take pleasure in the small things, in the briefest of interactions, in that glimmer of a connection with someone else, in walking the streets in the cold air with other people who are doing the same. And, perhaps most importantly, I know what I want now. In a guy, in a relationship, for myself and for my future, for my life. And if I haven't yet the slightest clue how to go about getting these things, I have to hope that recognizing them is at least half the battle.

I hope you will join me as I alternately wallow in this post-holiday letdown and rejoice in celebration of small victories. And what better way to do that, I think, than a contest? And while I would love to offer prizes like a pair of round-trip plane tickets to France!!! or a new Wii!!!, let's be honest here; if I could afford those things I'd be at home right now hanging out with my family and friends and playing tennis on my new Wii. Instead I offer you my humble gifts, or the winner's choice of the following:

- an opportunity to guest post on the Diary of Why
- a guest post written by me, to be posted on your blog

Or in the absence of a blog or desire to do my dirty work for me, I offer the following options:
- one truth: you ask me one question which I am obligated to answer truthfully and publicly

Or, alternatively:
- one dare: you dare me to do anything you want, which I am required to follow through and report back on, with the condition that it is not illegal or permanently emotionally scarring

And who needs a Wii when my potential public humiliation is at stake, right? All you have to do to enter is leave a comment. Tell me anything: where you live, your middle name, what you had for lunch today. Enter by...oh, say, 12:00 P.M. Thursday, EST. (Though at the moment my physical presence is Central European, my blog is and always will be Eastern Standard). Winner to be chosen by random number generator, ink-a-bink, or throwing darts at the computer screen (whichever feels right at the moment).

Good luck!


  1. my middle name is Aurelie and I think you are so right about how plus ca change, plus c'est la meme chose-- but writing it down somehow give us something to reflect upon, non?

    congratulations on your 200th post!

    now go eat a FRESH croissant (still warm) for me!

    bisous, bluepoppy

  2. Yay for your 200th post!! I always forget to check when my anniversaries are, but I should get up on that.
    Where I live - Hollywood, CA
    Middle name - Miriam
    Lunch today - I haven't eaten it yet, but it will be the meatball soup I made last night. Yum!

  3. Does eating a Quarter Pounder from a less than desirable restaurant mean that I am now a quarter of a pound fatter?

    Happy 200th post!!


  4. Seattle, Lynn, PB&J. Borrrrrinnng.

    200 posts later and I'm still amused. Thanks for helping me test my webcam the other day, even with friends there with you. Smooches!

  5. Congrats on 200 posts! My middle name is Kathleen and I ate a turkey melt for lunch. And I'd love it if you wrote a guest post on my blog.

  6. aww rach, what a super post.

  7. I would be hard pressed to come up with a dare that you would not disqualify as "permanently emotionally scarring." even still, you should give me the chance. I might make you a guest post as a belated xmas present.
    hugs! e*

  8. Alright, let's see - Paris, Ann and I haven't eaten lunch yet since I just got up.

    We should meet up for a coffee sometime this week (cuz speaking more English and less French is *exactly* what you need, lol)!

  9. my sister and i are challenging our blog friends to a ten minute tidy. which can be taking literally, as in tidy a drawer, or yourself, either physically or just plain head upkeep. trying to move forward with our lives in 2009 with the small things. since the big things appear only to be bills. aghghhh.

  10. Congratulations on 200! My middle name is Matthew, and it's too early for lunch here.

    Also, Talia shouldn't get two entries for her two identical posts. (Nice try though, Tal)

  11. Ksam - My middle name is Ann too! I would love to meet up for a coffee this week. Let's do it!

  12. Congrats on your 200th post. I enjoy your voice.

    For the record, I live in Paris, my middle name is Laura, and I ate lunch at an international potluck that included yucca root.

  13. Hmmm, Paris, Marie, and an egg sandwich...

    I dare you to drink two rhum rhums this Friday with the blog girls. If you're really crazy you'll drink three. But you might not live to tell about it.

  14. I have to say, I am loving getting to know you all a bit better via your comments, and seeing some new blogs that I haven't visited before. Keep 'em coming!

    Evolutionary- I accept your dare. (Thankfully they're called rhum rhums and not vodka vodkas, or I would have had to decline). Two sounds almost too easy, though something tells me I may feel differently after...

  15. I think I'm too late to enter your contest (being back in the homeland and all) but I just wanted to comment on how beautifully written your blog was and how similar I feel about my own life (minus the lack of a man...I'm married, but sometimes I wish I were still single!)

    In the event that I didn't miss the contest (I suck at time zone calculations), my answers are: suburb of Paris, Marie, fruit salad!

  16. ooh, i've been without internet (in sunny, warm cozumel mexico) and just saw this.. congrats rach! i'll email you tomorrow when i get home about spain. besos, laverne