My First Blog Challenge: Day 1

So many things are running through my mind at the moment, but the problem is they’re all jumbled up in my head that it would take months, maybe years, to unravel everything. So while I wait for my brain cells to organize themselves, I decided to embark in my first ever Blog Challenge. Every blogger I follow seems to have done it (or at least tried to) so I told myself yesterday that I should give it a shot too! It seems like a ticket to enter the blogosphere.

The challenge is pretty daunting. One post everyday–something I actually try to avoid because I’m afraid I might resort to the mundane–multiplied by 30! Apparently, making lists is an effective way to stay creative and since this test is a conglomeration of lots of little lists, I hope that, should I succeed, I’d be oozing ingenuity. I leafed through the topics and I haven’t seen anything particularly awful. At least I know my posts won’t be too boring.

This is me. I like making distraught faces when I’m bored.

Here goes: Topic 1: A recent picture of yourself and 15 things about you

1. I was supposed to be a boy. After three girls, my parents were looking for a little guy for my brother to play with. They even had a name ready: Scott Stuart. Alas, when I popped out, it was another girl! That’s me: breaking expectations since 1990.

My mom had to scramble for a name and they were running out of female names that start with an S. My name, Sarah Shayne, is actually pretty dull compared to my sisters’ rather glamorous monikers. Thank heavens I have a good nickname. I’ve been Sasha since I was born but unfortunately, my kindergarten classmates and teachers kept pronouncing it Zsa Zsa (Padilla not Gabor). That infuriated me a bit and I started introducing myself as Sarah. Sasha was a name reserved only for my more articulate friends.

2. I was a dancer. Was being the operative word. I danced through gradeschool and high school. Not once did I take a PE exam (you’re exempted if you dance in the school programs). One of my biggest regrets is choosing writing over dance in college when I didn’t really have to. I just didn’t want to stretch myself too thin. I plan to enroll in a class soon. Crossed fingers that I still have my form. 🙂

3. I aspire to have my first, self-paid designer bag next year. I have no branded aspirations whatsoever (when it comes to bags, at least); as a matter of fact I hate extortionate labels! However, I do appreciate quality and more importantly I know the power these signature items have in the professional world. Executives and bigwigs are more likely to entertain you if they know you can speak their language.

I only want two designer bags in my life: a Mulberry Alexa and a Chanel 2.55. I love how the Mulberry is signature but not at all showy. To me, monogrammed bags are excessively arrogant (plus they look like luggage) on top of the fact that they are already very showy. The Alexa makes a stylish statement while being extremely utilitarian. Chanel because every girl needs one at one point in her life.

4. I’ve been wearing mascara for two months now. I hate wearing makeup; it is a huge hassle and it makes my face itch. A few months ago though, one of my favorite PR people reminded us how important appearances are in our industry. It’s true. Looking your best is the best defense against the constant stare-downs and raised eyebrows we get at work. My usual routine involves Safeguard soap (facial soaps aren’t strong enough for me), a layer of Aveeno, spot concealer, then press powder. But Ms. Raquel told us to never underestimate the impact of good mascara. Suffice to say, I’ve been using “good” mascara for two months; I’ve actually graduated to eyeshadow or eyeliner (depending on the situation) last month; and for the past two weeks, I’ve been putting rouge on my cheeks–this one I’m still getting used to. I even forgot to dab some on today.

5. I drink over two liters of water a day. I drink two to three glasses when I wake up, a tumbler and 1.5 liters of Absolute during work (sometimes more when I’m on a food-tasting), and about two pitchers before bed. As you can see from above, I have no skin regimen to speak of. My addiction with water keeps my skin looking fresh and healthy. Chos!

6. I used to be a Coke addict. You might have seen me say this a couple of times in this blog, but only because I kind of miss it. Four years ago, I went through at least three cans of Coca Cola everyday. I’ve been soda free since December 23, 2008.

7. I have a very rare case of OCD. I’m not a neat freak; I’m not obsessed with hygiene. When I find a book or movie or series that I like, I tend to reread or rewatch it over and over again until I know all the details by heart. I spent one year of my life just reading the first five (then six) Harry Potter books. I crazy-read the seventh one on its own. I’ve memorized all the Sorting Hat songs, mermaid chants, spells, curses. I’ve read The Hunger Games trilogy about 25 times–and of course I have to read them in order every time! I can recite titles and lines from The Baby-sitters Club and Sweet Valley. Our Jeffrey Archer books are pretty dog-eared as well. I’ve seen Gone With the Wind around 30 times, Forrest Gump about 60 times, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory about 20 times, and Romy and Michele, Center Stage, and Clueless about a hundred times each.

I have this weird belief that if I’m passionate on something, I have to be an expert on it. There are, I admit, some literature that I can’t reread constantly. Either they’re too heavy or repetition would make them lose meaning. I haven’t reread Perks of Being A Wallflower, A Perfect Symmetry, We Need To Talk About Kevin, and The Lovely Bones though I love all of them.

8. I love dogs and I’ve come to a realization that I cannot live in a house without a dog. Jason wants a Pomsky while I have my sights on a toy poodle.

9. I’m saving up for graduate school which I intend to pay for all by myself. We were raised to believe that if we wanted something, we had to work at it by ourselves. Only special occasions like good grades and birthdays deserved rewards.

I have big dreams and I dream about big schools. My top choices are in North America but if I don’t pass or raise the money in time, I have no qualms about attending Ateneo (or UP) which has excellent writing programs as well. I don’t want to attend a cheapo, unheard-of school overseas for the sake of being abroad (See, I know the difference between quality and plain expense!). I want the real deal. At the moment I’m not ready to get back to studying–not just financially but also emotionally. At 22, two years after college, I feel that I haven’t acquired enough “real life” experiences required to make most of graduate school.

10. I like really good, really smart, really clean-cut guys. Guys I can argue with, debate with, talk random shiz with. I’m very much into trivia (honestly, I throw Jeopardy questions around like confetti) and my type of man is someone who’s as into knowledge and learning as much as I am. Someone who goes WHOA at magnificent, seemingly impossible things, who scrunches his face in thought, who has similar but varied interests from me so we can get along but still trade facts. A nerd, a dork, a geek. Kind of like the guy I’m with now. 🙂

11. I like sparkly things–everything from fairy dust to diamonds. If it was socially acceptable to roll around in glitter, I’d probably be the first one to dive in.

12. I eat a lot. As a food writer, eating is my verb but I find that I eat more than what’s necessary. It’s a fixation, really. I have to constantly be munching on something. I have a bag of green peas and peanuts on stand by on my desk and at home.

13. I cannot pick a favorite food. I have favorite restaurants and cuisine though. Italian, Chinese, Filipino, and Vietnamese. Isabelo Garden Restaurant, Village Tavern, Ba Noi’s, Spiral, Chez Karine, Geisha, Myron’s, Mamou. The list is absolutely endless!

14. I have a major thing for Liam Neeson and Bruce Willis.

15. It took me about three hours to complete this list! Of course that does not count the time I had to recreate my writeup because WordPress ate my entry again (I had written about seven when my post disappeared). It was a lot harder than I thought.

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