Category Archives: Faith and Religion

Decisions

Beside dance, Harry Potter has always been my “thing.”  Since I first became obsessed with the series at the age of 9 I’ve been the Harry Potter Girl everywhere I go. I’m usually rather open about my love for the books and my involvement in fandom though I sometimes avoid discussing the topic with “muggles” if I sense that the conversation will only invite judgement and scorn. When I moved to New York, 99% of the close friends I made, I met through Harry Potter. I met my husband through Harry Potter (in a roundabout way) and I’ve spent countless hours (and dollars) at fan events, wizard rock concerts and gatherings.

In the summer of 2007 I attended my very first Harry Potter convention. Just ten days after the release of the final installment  in JK Rowling’s septology, over one thousand fans gathered to celebrate ten years of Harry Potter and the incredible literary and social journeys we’d completed. The energy of so many passionate fans gathered in one place combined with the quality of the academic presentations, round tables and panels created one of the most magical weeks of my life. I was hooked. I made plans to attend two conferences the following summer and spent most of my freshman year of college anticipating the summer when I’d get to see my Potter friends and experience “convention high” again. Every convention experience is different–some conventions I’ve enjoyed far more than others, but each has taught me valuable lessons about literature, friendships and myself.

This summer a large convention is scheduled to take place in Orlando at the soon-to-be-opened Wizarding World of Harry Potter theme park. I’ve been planning to attend this conference for years. A conference at HOGWARTS? Can’t miss it, right?

That’s exactly why I have to. Over the last few months, I’ve been trying to assess the priorities in my life. Whenever I spend time in scripture, I am reminded how many of my priorities seem to be about myself rather than God and others. Now that I’m married, about to graduate college and have recommitted my life to the service of Christ, I can no longer continue to serve earthly idols. Harry Potter and the fandom will always play a huge role in my life. I am not any less passionate about the books or my fandom friends and I believe that Christ’s message shines brilliantly in the Potter stories. I just have to be careful that it is not the sole focus of my life. I have also become more hesitant about which fan events I attend for various moral and spiritual reasons.

I felt the Lord calling me to further develop my relationship with Him this summer in a radical and different way. I began looking for places to volunteer or Christian retreats or ministry-related  jobs, but nothing seemed to fit. Many wanted several recommendations from pastors and since we are still searching for a New York church home I don’t currently have a pastor. Many positions required a college degree or previous experience in the field. The retreats I looked into seemed great, but not quite what I was looking for. Then, one night while doing completely unrelated research, I stumbled upon Summit Ministries. After reading their mission statement and the descriptions of their two-week conferences, I knew this was what I wanted to do this summer. You can Google them for the whole spiel, but needless to say I am very, very excited. I have prayed about it and even though I would prefer to spend my money on a Harry Potter con, I feel the Lord calling me to die to myself, to make a sacrifice for my own good. At Harry Potter cons I am comfortable. I’m around my close friends, I know how things work, I’m completely in my element. This conference is something different altogether. Surprisingly I don’t have very many Christian friends these days and I’m looking forward to the fellowship. I’m also looking forward to being in a learning environment conducive to a Biblical worldview–the longer I spend in my wonderful but very secular, liberal college, the more I crave the evangelical perspective. Though I’m grateful to have so much experience learning about other views and defending my own, sometimes you just want to be around like-minded people for a while, ya know?

It was a tough decision and I know I’ll probably suffer a lot when I hear about how awesome the theme park is and everything, but I think that’s suffering I’m going to have to endure. Thankfully, there is another shorter, smaller and more affordable con this May that Graham and I will still be attending. So I’ll still get my tiny Harry Potter conference fix. Is that cheating?

The Good Shepherd

I lied in my last post. I’m taking eighteen credits this year. I’m a sucker for overwhelming myself; I thrive on stress. Plus I couldn’t resist piling on one more course to fulfill a creative writing minor. My sixth class is a special topics in writing course about trauma memoir. This means I get to relive the most traumatic moments of my life in narrative form and then share them with the class. Considering that writers tend to be a depressed lot, this should be fun.

Unrelated, but during the lent season I am trying to reread the gospels all the way through. I’ve noticed that I tend to ignore the Gospel of John in favor of his synoptic brothers Matthew, Mark and Luke, so I started with John this time and plan to work my way backward. Discovery: it’s by far the most beautiful, theologically-certain of the gospels. (Am I allowed to say that?) No “secret Jesus” here. We get the John 3:16 money-verse, tons of light/dark imagery and some great parables. This one from John 10 particularly stuck with me after I read it:

Therefore Jesus said again, “I tell you the truth, I am the gate for the sheep. 8All who ever came before me were thieves and robbers, but the sheep did not listen to them. 9I am the gate; whoever enters through me will be saved.[a] He will come in and go out, and find pasture. 10The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.

11“I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. 12The hired hand is not the shepherd who owns the sheep. So when he sees the wolf coming, he abandons the sheep and runs away. Then the wolf attacks the flock and scatters it. 13The man runs away because he is a hired hand and cares nothing for the sheep.

14“I am the good shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know me— 15just as the Father knows me and I know the Father—and I lay down my life for the sheep. 16I have other sheep that are not of this sheep pen. I must bring them also. They too will listen to my voice, and there shall be one flock and one shepherd. 17The reason my Father loves me is that I lay down my life—only to take it up again. 18No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have authority to lay it down and authority to take it up again. This command I received from my Father.”

19At these words the Jews were again divided. 20Many of them said, “He is demon-possessed and raving mad. Why listen to him?”

21But others said, “These are not the sayings of a man possessed by a demon. Can a demon open the eyes of the blind?”

–John 10:7-21 (NIV)

Jesus meant that there should be one flock and one shepherd. So why are we Christians continually divided amongst each other? Also how great is it that Jesus came so that we may have life and have it to the full (or have it “abundantly” in some translations).

Prayers Requested

I feel like I need to blog right now. I came home from saying goodbye to a friend who’s leaving New York this weekend at the conclusion of her summer internship and began the overwhelming process of packing for the next week. After about five minutes of cramming a third of the contents of my closet into my tiny blue suitcase, I realized that haphazardly throwing clothes into a bag probably wasn’t the best approach and resolved to start over in a more organized fashion. As I made myself a cup of tea and sat down in front of my word processor to type out a concise list of everything I would need in the days leading up to my wedding, I was struck with the suddent momentousness of the occasion. Granted, I like to over-exaggerate the momentousness of measurements of time in my head, but still. This is my last night in New York as a single person, my last night of lying wide awake on the large air mattress that serves as my temporary bed trying to ignore the creepy sounds my creaky apartment building makes at 3am. I felt the sudden desire to record this moment for posterity, imagining tonight as some Great Turning Point in the unconsequential story of my existence.

I’m elated and excited and feel so unbelievably blessed. In spite of my stress and worry about trivial concerns, I’m confident that our wedding–and marriage– will emerge victorious and successful. That said, I present this very special list:

Events, Situations and Other Miscellaneous Thingybobs Which Need Prayer

1. Graham’s photo ID situation. Due to an array of unpleasant circumstances out of his control, Graham no longer has a photo ID. As you may know, you need a photo ID to be a functioning adult in the world today. As such, he has to take a bus part of the way to Ohio and be driven by amazing, selfless, caring, devoted friends the other part of the way rather than fly. Once in Ohio, he should be able to secure a new ID. If he doesn’t, we can’t  get a marriage license. Please pray things go smoothly.

2. The transportation of items and people situation. Figuring out who is going to take items to the venue and when should be fun to figure out. Figuring out how to transport myself, my bridal party and my myrian of out-of-town guests who don’t have vehicles should also be fun. Pray things go smoothly.

3. The weather situation. I may not have fantasized about THE perfect wedding my entire life, but I have always wanted an outdoor wedding. The outdoor venue with which I was blessed for the ceremony is literally my idea of a perfect, picturesque wedding setting, but some meteorologists predict heavy rain for the day of the wedding. There is a back up plan that involves having the ceremony in the same converted barn as the reception and while this wouldn’t be THE END OF THE WORLD,  it would make my heart a little bit melancholy. Pray for clear skies.

There are loads more individual situations that need prayer, but threes plenty for this entry. If I have time this week, I’ll try and update at least once more before the wedding itself, but I can’t promise anything. Graham and I arrive in Ohio (separately) late Saturday night and early Sunday morning we’re kicking off the week at the Medieval Faire with some friends. After this day of reenacting a depressing, unsanitary period of human history, things get nuts. My mom and sister arrive, we glue small beads on various decorative objects, meet the DJ and florist IRL for the first time and have our final couple of pre-marital counseling sessions. (In which, among other things we get to talk about sex with our Pastor, every prude young Christian’s dream.)

Thanks for the prayers and the well-wishes. See you in Ohio.

Flourescently-Lit Achievement

Several months ago, I compiled a list of Things I’m Supposed to Like by Don’t. This week, I realized that my list should also include a sub-category: Things I’m Supposed to Want but Just Make Me Depressed.

Over the course of my overly ambitious and eager childhood, I programed the multitude of cells and slimy mass that today’s leading scientific experts often refer to as my “Brain” to constantly achieve. I’m not even really sure what my brain considers “acheivement” but I know that it’s not happy until it is satisfied with my acheive-ifying abilities. The dozens of years spent sweating in a dance studio, bent over a desk (or my kitchen table) taking notes or writing stories also programmed my brain to measure acheivement in several very distinct ways:

1. Achievement in dance. In order to be happy, I have to be performing, training, taking class and making progress in my chosen art. When other things get in the way of this, I tend to get grumpy, depressed and anxious. School is often the culprit, which brings me to . . .

2. Achievement in academics. After spending most of my formative years in homeschool, I was so eager to experience the adventure of the Texas public school system that I completed all of my ninth grade summer assignments by February of previous year. At my International/arts/semi-college preperatory school “summer assignments” consisted of everything from complex research papers about cultural diversity (Geography), to creative writing projects (English), to watching the original Star Wars trilogy* (Biology). I eventually learned how wonderful procrastination can be, but nevertheless my Type-A, Hermione Grangerish self sought All-As all the time. Aside from a disastrous year of Algebra II and my ambivalent attitude toward Chemistry, I acheived my goal and tied with 10 other people for the Top of the Class.

Since graduating high school I’ve grown and changed a lot as a person. I’ve renewed my relationship with Christ, grown to greatly value the place and role of the family and society and spent some time in the “Real World.” The result is that the things I’m supposed to care about as a 21st Century, college educated, ambitious and relatively intelligent woman, just don’t matter to me. I’ve spent some time temping for a major publishing corporation over the summer and while I thoroughly enjoy the people and like working there in two and three week spurts, the whole situation just drains me.

I have no interest in florescent lights and unlimited supply of bad coffee. Staring at a computer screen all day while completing tasks in which I’m not emotionally or intellectually invested is a prison sentence for me. There are perks, sure. A good salary, a pretty sweet bathroom and occasionally free business lunch. I’m missing the gene that is supposed to make me want a high-powered career like this. Every time I go to work, I think about how much I wish I were spending 8 hours a day in rehearsal rather than on the thirtieth floor of an cubicle-ridden building. I wish I could find satisfaction in it because people who work there do important things that need to be done, they have routine days and regular paychecks and health insurance. They contribute to society. I envy the people who work there and find fulfillment.

It’s great for temporary work, but after every assignment, I’m reminded why I dance, why I write, why I’d rather stay at home with my future kids and teach them than sit around long tables using corporate catch-phrases like “touch base” and “error out.” It’s a good thing to realize, but also pretty distressing. My future-husband is going to make a wonderful professor and nothing makes me happier than seeing him fulfiled and happy, but since I’m pretty set on not being the high-earning-power-woman, I feel like I’ve put a lot of pressure on him to be the breadwinner of the family. I don’t want him to have to sacrifice any of his dreams because of my selfishness. But that’s a blog-thought for another day. The point is that there are only two ways I can see myself ever making money:

1. Dancing

2. Writing

Of course, I’m pretty doubtful that many people will pay me to do these two things for extended periods of time, but I’ll never forgive myself for not trying with all of my weirdly overachieving braincells.

*My teacher was a big fan. This was also my least favorite Summer Assignment.

God is the Great Tickler

While our peers drank themselves to a stupor in Lower East Side bars, Graham and I spent last Friday night sitting around my room listening to James Taylor, Miles Davis and piano arrangements of our favorite hymns.( Since we’re good, former Focus on the Family kids, I think there were a few D.C. Talk or Amy Grant hits thrown in the mix as well.) Somewhere between “Fire and Rain” and “Fairest Lord Jesus”, Graham decided it would be a good idea to tickle me. This wasn’t a gentle, flirtatious finger-against-the-chin tickle. This was a full on, double-handed, fingers-into-the-sides-like-daggers tickle.  He showed no mercy.  There I was just sitting on my bed enjoying some HOLY music, and without warning, a pair of hands I trust attacks me and turns me into a squirming, shrieking, ball of giggles. As I flailed my limbs wildly, trying to push his hands away from my ribs, Graham grinned maniacally like a taller, less psychologically disturbed incarnation of the Joker. Tears formed in my eyes as I screamed for him to stop. Finally, the tickling ceased and I regained my oh-so-refined and pulled-together manner. (Ha.)

I really hate being tickled. Sure, no one really likes being tickled. So few people enjoy being tickled that you can’t even Become a Fan of Being Tickled on Facebook. That’s pretty amazing.  But I hate tickling even more than most people.  In fact, IF Being Tickled had a Facebook page and IF you were allowed to “thumbs down” things on Facebook, I would thumbs down it 5,673 times. If Being Tickled had a YouTube channel I would flag it as inappropriate and SPAM its profile comments with hate mail and give every one of its videos one star. Why does tickling offend me so much? Aside from being physically uncomfortable, there’s nothing particularly evil about a tickle. It doesn’t cause any permanent damage it even makes its victims laugh. Can’t say the same for most comic book villains. The real reason I hate being tickled is that I hate losing control.

It’s not that I’m a control freak. Well, ok. Sometimes I can be a control freak, but only over my own life. I like knowing exactly what I’m going to do and how I’m going to do it. I plan out my life years in advance. Most of the time, I get panic attacks or episodes of depression when things don’t pan out exactly how I imagine they will. My need for absolute control over my actions has resulted in bouts with eating disorders and absurdly high standards for myself academically. One of the more positive side-effects is my hatred of alcohol. The idea of losing any form of muscular or mental control over scares me to death.  Graham knows this. Graham knows that I hate being tickled. I sometimes make him promise that he won’t try to tickle me before I get close to him. Usually he complies, but last Friday he did me a favor.

After the tickling ceased, we returned to our familiar routine scrolling through iTunes, talking about what movie we wanted to watch and knitting patterns. Actually, neither of us knit, but wouldn’t it be cool if we did? Out of the blue, Graham stopped flipping through my DVD case and looked me in the eye.

“You know what?” he said. “I think you need to let God be your Great Tickler.”

If you know Graham at all, you know that ambiguous ,absurd statements escape his lips about every 7.3 minutes. I wasn’t especially surprised or intrigued by his statement.

“What?” I asked, expecting and explanation akin to the one he’d given the previous weekend when he suggested that Jesus is the Great Bread Man. (Apparently, Jesus was not human, but a giant loaf of bread.*) Instead, Graham did what he does best—reveal how he is at least 85% smarter and 112% more spiritually mature than I am.**

“You know, give up a little control to Him every once in a while.”

This is both exactly what I needed to hear and exactly what I didn’t want to hear. One of the most annoying things about Graham is that he tends to be right, in both the political-compass sense and the Major-Life-Lessons-Sarah-Needs-to-Learn sense.  As a church kid, I grew up hearing about how God had great plans for my life. I read all the bible verses about surrendering my life to him, not worrying about tomorrow, observing the Lilies in the field and all that jazz. As a proud AWANA*** member for 10 years, I memorized many of those verses and robotically repeated them to blue-haired volunteers  in exchange for stickers shaped like various pastoral mammals. Over goldfish and kool-aid, I vowed never to end up like Jonah who, according to the skit performed by the church youth drama ministry at Vacation Bible School, ended up inside a giant cardboard Shamu because he didn’t listen to God. Despite this phobia of aquatic digestive tracts, I never mastered the art of surrendering to the Lord. I never fully realized that when Proverbs  3:5-6 says, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight,” it means, well, “stop thinking you know better than the creator of the universe, nitwit.”

It isn’t like God added an author’s note to the second edition saying “Psyche! You thought I actually wanted you to surrender control to me? I got you there, Sarah. I got you there!”  As far as I know, God isn’t a 1990s Disney sitcom character. God doesn’t say “Psyche” or “just kidding.” (Except to Abraham in Genesis 22 but that’s a whole different situation. Abraham was a Knight of Faith Patriarch with an awesome beard.)

It took Graham’s tickling metaphor to get me to start thinking seriously about whether or not I was letting the Lord make my paths straight. When you think about it, tickling is pretty good metaphor for the way God works in our lives. We think we’re great. We’ve got everything under control. Then along comes to mighty hand of the God of the universe. At first we’re taken a back. We try to fight it, get that weird sensation away from us, causing more struggle, strife and stress. Why, God? But in the end, we’re laughing whether we like it or not. And laughing is healthy, right? Clinical studies prove laughing makes you feel better. At least, I’m sure there is some study somewhere that proves that being tickled frequently is awesome for your health.

God’s tickled me a lot these past few weeks. I wanted things to go MY WAY when it came to securing and moving into our new apartment. For no reason apparent to me at the time, God decided that everything I planned would go all wrong. He sort of forced me to surrender control to Him, by reminding me that I am only human. I make mistakes. I don’t have all the answers. Only he does. Like the biblical Sarah, I laughed. Unlike the Sarah of Genesis, however, I laughed not because I didn’t believe God’s promises, but because I saw them fulfilled. God’s promise that he would provide me with a home (a gorgeous apartment in upper Manhattan) was fulfilled and I laughed at myself for doubting and with joy at the awesomeness of  the Lord. His way is the best way. From now on, I’ll remember Graham’s wise words and God’s unchanging, eternal Word. I’ll let Him be my Great Tickler.
*Note for the Christian Blogger Police: No, neither Graham nor I actually believe the savior of the universe was literally a loaf of bread. I mean, Jesus himself says he provides the Bread of Life, so  I think it’s a pretty good theory, but the Apostle’s Creed says “no”.

** For those not as familiar with Christian culture, “spiritual maturity” is a phrase often used as way to 1) probe or 2) gossip. For example, “How is your spiritual maturity these days, Sarah?” is a church-y way of saying “Why didn’t you come to last week’s potluck? Do you hate God!?”  Similarly, when someone says, “I am trying to really show Sarah some Christian Love, but I just don’t think she’s very spiritually mature,” they are saying something along the lines of “Sarah sits in the wrong part of the sanctuary and bakes better pies than me.” All in Christian Love of course.

***AWANA is a lot like boy scouts or girl scouts except with more Bible verse memorization and less urinating in the woods.

How I Didn’t Lose My Donkeys

You know how everyone has that one friend whose always talking about the karmic balance of the universe, or the movements of the stars or collective negative energy? It’s that same person who obsesses over people’s moon charts and explains people’s behavior with phrases like “he’s such a Scorpio*.”  Maybe it was the fact that horoscopes were considered borderline occultish and Satanic in my childhood church or maybe it’s because I resent the fact that my “sign” is an unpleasant insect-crap hybrid**, but I don’t really by that stuff. Here in New York I can’t even see the stars most of the time let alone meditate on the effects their slight shift may have on our petty endeavors on earth. Given the borderline catastrophic week everyone and their dog just experiences, I’m tempted to change my mind.

Why did everyone I know experience a plethora of MINOR DISASTERS this week?  I mean, I’m not actually sold on the idea that there’s some crazy cosmic force acting in everyone’s life right now, other than maybe a few demons and an angel here and there, but there’s something going on. For a variety of reasons, I spent a disproportionate amount of time in tears during the last six days or so. Everything I touched LITERALLY turned to materialized Fail. If King Midas had his own soap opera, I’d be the Evil-Twin-Alter-Ego named Julio.

I won’t get into details but suffice it to say this week wasn’t very happy, but I’m happy to report that Friday at midnight my Fail Carriage turned back into a pretty pumpkin and some stuff went well. By “stuff”, I mean the engagement party Graham and I decided to host in my small, enclosed Brooklyn apartment. I actually had to move the sofa out onto the street to make room for more bodies, but 1) I wanted to get rid of that couch anyway and 2)now it’s like our building has an outdoor lobby or something. Next, I’m going to start dressing in a blue blazer and pretend to be the doorman. I could buzz people up and everything.

ANYWAY.

We pulled off the party surprisingly well thanks to help from Graham’s brother, who cooked and cleaned with us all day. People enjoyed the food I/we cooked and even though the guests included a friend from high school, two friends from the non-Harry Potter part of the interwebz and a LOT of  (very loud) Harry Potter fans and the awkward meter could have been VERY, VERY HIGH everyone seemed to enjoy themselves. The first thing Mia said when she walked in the door and saw our apartment full of happy people was, “I didn’t know you had friends!”  It surprised me too.

Following yesterday’s exhaustion and elation,I needed a day of recharging. Naturally, I just drank a lot of coffee and some pureed fruit at one of my favorite East Village secret hideaways while sort-of-almost studying for my upcoming Development of Christianity test. All in all it was a successful and non-disastrous couple of days while gives me hope for this week.

Because God has a sense of humor, He lead me to the Book of Job in my daily Bible Study this evening. So much for complaining about MY life, man. Seriously, next time you start feeling self-pitying and complaining to God/friends/family about the crap happening in life, it might be a good idea to read Job. I don’t want to *SPOIL* you since I know you’re probably waiting for the movie to come out, but the guy’s SUPER RICH and COMPLETELY HOLY and he loses everything including all his kids all at once. That’s just the first two chapters. Anyway, the moral of the story is that after that all happens HE PRAISES THE LORD.  Sorry for the capital letters and for sounding like a Sunday school teacher with a bad haircut and no teeth, but how crazy is that? My catastrophes are mostly not life threatening, nor do they involve the loss of my children or donkeys or goats or servants. Not that I have children, donkeys, goats or servants, but STILL. My self-challenge for the week is to praise the Lord even when things don’t go my way. He’s good all the time, after all. Not just when my horoscope says so.

If I were really holy, I’d end this post with a Bible verse from Job, but I’m not gonna. I’m going to make you read if for yourself. Well, I can’t make you, but I’m hoping the part about the donkeys made you curious. Plus, Job is from the Land of Uz which is the early precursor of the Land of Oz. Really. It’s on Wikipedia or something.

How were your weeks? Any catastrophes or blessings or donkeys?

*To some extent, my other half and roommate Mia is this person in my life, minus the karmic balance of the universe stuff. She reads this occasionally. Mia, here’s your shout-out. This long.

**They’re actually arachnids of some sort according to the internet.Whatever. They look crab-like to me.

On not blogging and engagements and accidentally triple-majoring

Remember that time I was really, really going to write two more Intellectual Evangelism blogs? Yeah, we’ll see if that happens anytime soon.

There are a lot of things I could blog about right now. I could write a lengthy explanation for my lack of updates- one of those annoying entries no one actually wants to read. I mean, you don’t really care why I haven’t been blogging. You’re already wasting your time reading this anyway. At this point I should just stop writing and tell you to go back to watching viral videos of dancing hamsters on YouTube or Facebook stalking or staring open-mouthed at your NaNoWriMo word document.

Speaking of NaNoWriMo, why the weird not-really-acronym? Are we so busy desperately pounding our computer keys in an attempt to attain enlightenment in the form of a 50,000 word novel-like composition that we can’t even take the time to pronounce “National Novel Writing Month”? I could use this space and your precious time to discuss my NaNoWriMo efforts but If you’re participating you don’t have time to be reading this anyway and if you aren’t participating you are very likely so sick of hearing WriMos (which is apparently what NaNoWriMo participants are called which doesn’t make sense to me but whatever) discuss their novels and how many words they have and how their characters are not behaving or turning out to be serial killers that you don’t want to hear me discuss my noveling. I won’t discuss how I’m epically behind on word count or how I’m really excited about my story but hate not being able to edit as I go. If you’re  really that interested in my novel pursuits, you can read the synopsis here. The title’s almost certainly going to change, but I expect the general plot to stay in tact.

I could also write about the election. I’m not going to. Everything’s been said. The country is neither going to explode in apocalyptic doom or suddenly become the epitome of perfection and progress and happiness. Everything takes time. I said I wasn’t going to talk about it and really I’m not anymore. Done.

Oh wait. I am going to talk about something. For real.

Graham and I are engaged! There’s lots to say. I think I’m going to just write an “FAQ” about our engagement because people always have a lot of questions. Check back soon.

Also, I’m really happy with my life. I’ve got some promising prospects for my dance career, I’m working on my second novel, and decided to add another major to my degree. This is the way it works:

You are an English major. You like books and writing and talking about stories and literary criticism and “the other.” Books, by nature, tend to cover a broad range of subjects. They tell people’s stories. People’s stories are usually influenced by factors including culture, place of origin and religious tradition. So you decide to take a class about religious texts. Then you realize that this stuff is really interesting. Like, you get excited about doing your homework and going to class and stuff. Somehow, you find yourself in the academic advisement office declaring a religious studies minor. The more religious studies classes you take, the more you want to take. Soon your advisor notes that you’re taking so many Religion courses, you should just declare a double major and go all official and stuff. Great! Unfortunately, due to your school’s tiny size it doesn’t offer just a  Religious Studies major. You have to major in Philosophy AND Religious Studies. So you somehow find yourself majoring in English, Philosophy & Religious Studies and ALL YOU EVER WANTED TO DO WAS READ BOOKS.

Be careful, kids. You could accidentally end up triple-majoring. Worse than that, you could find yourself triple majoring in equally USELESS subjects that you actually like! The horror! I can hear the gods of higher education moaning in horror and preparing to smite me for not picking a practical major that will help me acquire a 9-5 job, a two-car garage and skirt suits.

Wow, that was long. Sorry, but I told you way back in the first paragraph to go watch hamster videos.