First Impressions, Introduction, About Me…Whatever You Wanna Call It, Here It Is.

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I think introducing yourself is awkward. Like, hey here’s me: I like mustard on my hot dogs and pickle-flavored popcorn, and yeah, I actually like hot dogs. I’m a zany kook! Take it or leave it. I mean, at its core an introduction is basically a sale or a transaction, if you will. You are selling yourself to the person that you’re introducing yourself to and hoping they deem you worthy of their time. I guess the same could be said for writing. So, let me know if I’m a good saleswoman.

And that was me trying to be analytical and deep. Did it sound forced? ‘cuz I honestly have no idea what I’m doing.

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Disclaimer: This is probably the only deliberate pop culture reference in this piece.

My general attitude toward talking about myself is defensive at best. Although, you could probably already tell by the long-winded “take it or leave it” spiel above. I always ask what’s so great about me? Why would anyone want to know anything about me? How important could I be? Whatever, the point is I got attitude about introductions. That said, this intro that you’re reading, or not reading whichever, is probably in its 1374th iteration because when I actually get off my ass and do something I tend to develop perfectionist tendencies. Hey, look, I guess that’s something about myself. Maybe this won’t be so bad…

I guess I should tell you my name. My name is Cynthia and this is yet another in the long list of things that I have attitude about. It might be because my name has never felt like my own. Growing up in Mexican culture, I was surrounded by names that were meant to be pronounced in Spanish. Every name that I say that belongs to a family member is said in Spanish because that’s how I was taught say that name. But my name doesn’t really fall into that category. At a young age, I was given the nickname “Cindy” and was referred to by that name by everyone in my family. “Cindy” sounds like its meant to be said in Spanish and “Cynthia” became the throwaway that was only used by my teachers who had no idea how to pronounce “Cindy” so it sounded like home. While I admire my mother’s noble intention to give me a name that was not “Maria” or “Guadalupe” (Not that there’s anything wrong with those names. I’m surrounded by some of the loveliest Marias and Lupes), I can’t help but feel removed from my name. Yea, so just call me Cindy.

I live in a city in southern California that isn’t really a city. I mean, we don’t even have our own civic center and we share a police department with a neighbor city. We’re not likely to become a real city anytime soon ‘cuz to do so would mean increased taxes and a loss of residential areas…mainly my residential area. The point is no one knows where I’m talking about when I’m asked where I’m from.

Before we moved here, we lived in a small unit behind my aunt and uncle’s house just off of Whittier Blvd in East LA. As soon as he was able, my dad moved us 15 miles east for reasons I’m sure had to do with the fact that my mom was pregnant with my younger brother and I’m positive had to do with the fact that people have certain preconceptions about East LA and some are actually true. I just won’t say which ones. As an East LA legacy, I am bound by an oath of silence. When we moved to H.H., we didn’t know anyone because all our family was living in the Los Angeles area. Even though I have two siblings, I feel that I had a lonely childhood. The consequence of living in a strange city away from family pretty much led to my having a sheltered childhood. It didn’t help that being my parent’s first born meant I was pretty much the test dummy for “parenthood”. Only to have them perfect application of the concept when it came to my brothers. Bitter much?

Even so, my parents constantly stressed the importance of family during my upbringing and I feel, as a result, I developed a home-body personality. The repercussions of that had me itching to move out before I was even 18. I remember an incident where I called my best friend, sobbing, because my dad had informed me that he would not let me move out when I turned 18. In hindsight, it made sense that my dad said what he said but 16-year-old me was a drama queen, as all 16-year-olds should be. Hormones and all that. The closer I got to 18, the more I realized how impossible it would be to actually accomplish moving out. I mean, I wasn’t rolling in cash. Did I even know how the world worked? Did I think they were just gonna let me live in an apartment FOR FREE? How would I buy groceries? How would I buy furniture? I DIDN’T EVEN HAVE CREDIT! Yeah, it just seems ludicrous that I didn’t think about these things then. But I think that’s the point of 16-year-olds, right?

I came to the realization that quite possibly the only way for me to realistically leave home was to go to university and thank god for that ‘cuz it seems like I really needed to learn how the world worked and also, get a job. So, I spent the 4 years after high school bluffing and stalling my way through community college. I did well enough in my classes and fancied myself an adult because I had a car and FAFSA money to spend. I had no real responsibilities and I could skip class whenever I wanted. I had a car, after all. I was free to go wherever I wanted…or I was free to go wherever I wanted within a 20 mile radius.

Like all things in my life, I discovered a passion and skill for writing at the very last minute. I decided that my time had come. I would leave home and transfer to a four-year university. Money be damned. I would drown myself in loans if need be. I figured that if I didn’t work out at least I had a taste of freedom and I could worry about paying off my loans in the far-off future. Hey, we’re in the far-off future now. How time flies! How loans pile up! I don’t know how I did it but I was able to graduate (with 3 AAs no less, which is a testament to how much time I wasted there) and got myself accepted to Humboldt State University, which is about a 12-hour drive north.

I won’t bore you with the gritty details as this is merely an introduction but, suffice it to say, it was the best 2 ½ years of my life! Contrary to my parent’s belief that I would somehow manage to find a way to die, I found that I excelled at being an adult human being when left to my own devices. I am not proud of enough to deny that I expect my mom to do all the housework but that’s just ‘cuz it’s what she always does. I know that sounds shitty but my mom is literally always cleaning. I’m pretty sure she does it for fun sometimes. I love you, mami! But when I was away, it all fell to me and I felt accomplished at being able to keep myself alive. I think I also really rejoiced in being able to go grocery shopping and not having anyone tell me no. If I wanted to buy 5 boxes of mac n cheese, then I would buy 5 boxes of mac n cheese. If I wanted to buy a party sized bag of hot Cheetos, then I would buy myself a damn party sized bag of hot Cheetos! The freedom to buy anything I wanted at the grocery store is pretty much what sold me on living on my own. It was better than I could have ever expected. Yeah, it’s kinda shitty to say that I loved life away from my family but I did and that doesn’t mean the love I have for my family is diminished or dampened. In fact, I think its strengthened ‘cuz you know absence makes the heart grow fonder and all that shit. Anyway, that was my long-winded explanation of where I went to school and why.

TL;DR: I wanted to go far away but not so far away that I had to pay out-of-state fees; So I chose to go to the northernmost Cal State, and it was awesooooome!!!

I’m not sure if you’re still reading this or if anyone is reading at all but if you are, please get back to me. I’d like to know…for science.

Now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, I thought it’d be nice to have some useless random intro superficial fluff stuff. So, here’s a list of some things you should know about me:

  1. I am 24 but like all millennials I fear the dreaded quarter-life crises so I just tell people I’m 21 going on 22. Well, it’s usually that or I let people make their own assumptions about age, which tends to work out in my favor ‘cuz I usually get 19. But, there was that one time someone thought I was 17, which I didn’t really understand. I have some under-eye bags that make me look about 32 but only when I get 4 hours of sleep, which is actually pretty common for me.
  2. I like to collect notebooks and then never write in them.
  3. I rescue books from odd places, like libraries and thrift shops and hoard then hoard them like Smaug.
  4. I watch too much TV, which really isn’t that amazing ‘cuz everyone does it but now that I’m no longer in school my life pretty much revolves around watching and re-watching TV series.
  5. I like anything in the supernatural genre.
  6. I don’t really have a favorite color but gun to my head, I’d have to say anything in the red, pink, or purple spectrum and also dark emerald ‘cuz it looks good on my skin.
  7. I’m a Libra. I don’t know what that has to do with anything but I like to believe that astrology is real because it’s fun and stuff. I went through a phase where I was really into reading my horoscope and trying to figure out which astrological sign would be my best match. But like most other things in my life, I got lazy and forgot to keep doing it. Btw, this blog is one of those things but look! I finally finished!
  8. I would someday like to be the showrunner for my own TV show.
  9. I recently discovered my younger brothers’ old Nerf gun and I’ve found that shooting at my walls helps along the writing process. Also, it’s just really cool to hold something gun-like in your hand and pull the trigger. Yeah, so that’s been pretty fun.
  10. My Patronus is a black mare, which makes sense ‘cuz I’ve been around horses pretty much my whole life. My Hogwarts house is Hufflepuff. The first time I took the sorting hat quiz I was Ravenclaw but then when I took it again a year later, I was Hufflepuff and have been every single time I’ve taken it since.
  11. If I could (like if you didn’t have to take out a loan to be able to buy one), I would probably put avocado on everything. EVERYTHING!!! and also, Sriracha.
  12. I really really love Asian food. Sushi, ramen, pho, kbbq. I would probably eat that for the rest of my life if I didn’t love my mom’s cooking so much.
  13. Recently, I’ve tried madeleines and I’ve become obsessed with them. They’re so delicious and buttery and I WANT THEM IN MY MOUTH ALL THE TIME!!!
  14. I have the ability to literally physically stay in bed all day. (P.S. I was in bed when I wrote this.)
  15. I’m a pretty dramatic ass hoe.
  16. I hate killing insects because I really really hate the crunchy sound they make.
  17. Sometimes I wonder if I’d make a good dominatrix ‘cuz I feel like I can be pretty intimidating and also, does it pay well?
  18. I talk to myself a lot, like A LOT! More than is normal, I feel. Whenever I’m in the car and I have a long drive, I ask myself questions and then answer them. Like an interview. I basically interview myself -_-
  19. I have a septum piercing. I decided to get it for my birfday during my last semester at Humboldt State. It remained a secret until the new year and my dad was not happy. Despite the fact that she hates it, I was not expecting was for my mom to come to my defense and she doesn’t waste any opportunity to tell me I should take it out. I mean, it was $90. I should at least keep it until I’m too old to look cool with a piercing on my face.
  20. My favorite ice cream is rosewater gelato (shout out to Living the Dream in Eureka, CA. Love you boo!)
  21. The only regret I have in life is selling my mom’s old Doc Martens. Those shits were phresh as phuck.
  22. I have really bad anxiety and I am constantly thinking of worst-case, this-is-how-I-die scenarios, which I feel isn’t that far off from what everyone else is doing during their free time.

Basically, I’m a feminist Chicana writer with an endless list of neuroses. I have no idea what I’m doing. But, hopefully, this is a step in the right direction. Hopefully, writing on this blog will get me closer to knowing.

Until next time,
write or die.

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