Me? Athletic?

If this was a week ago, I would have scoffed in your face and proceeded to stuff a Chipotle burrito in my mouth just to prove you wrong. Paige, athletic? That must be some kind of joke, right? The girl who sits for hours on end watching re-runs of Criminal Minds? The girl who spends more time tweeting than she does spending time with friends? [I actually do have friends, I swear.] The girl whose favorite thing to do is play with fonts and edit her resume? [Again, I am not completely anti-social.] The girl who has (literally) always been in the shadow of her two younger brothers as they shattered swimming records, played 3 sports a year, and made at least one All-Star team a year? Well, low and behold, this girl has officially turned over a new leaf and has a new-found appreciation for athleticism.

Before I divulge into this new adventure, I think it is pertinent that we travel back in time and revisit all of the moments in my life that might lead you to think I would never ever be serious about exercise. Let’s start off when I was a toddler. At the ages of five and six, most young girls were taking ballet or jazz, or some sort of dance lessons, and you can bet I was right there beside them. However, I’ve kind of always had this thing where I wanted to be different from everyone else just for the sake of being different, which lead me to pursue a different art form: ice-skating. Oh, I wanted to be the next Michelle Kwan. I was practicing my triple axles everywhere, perfecting skating on one leg, the whole shabang. Yes, ice-skating was quite the thrill, but needless to say, it didn’t last very long. I soon realized that, in fact, I would not be the next Michelle Kwan, and I was really only in it for the fabulous costumes, and became discouraged to continue on with the sport.

Next, came the ever-exciting elementary school years. Naturally, I participated in soccer and softball, the two classics when it came to VYI (Vienna Youth Incorporated) sports. Oh, I was on some of the best soccer teams: the Vienna Lazers (1997), the Green Leprechauns (1998), the Orange Aliens (1999), the Maroon Martians (2000), the Blue Bombers (2000), and a revisit to the Green Leprechauns in 2001. However, for some reason, the softball team I was on stayed the same throughout the years: the Braves. As you can tell from the photographic evidence, having my hair-wrap in the picture was far more important than attempting to keep my eyes open. I’ll be honest here, I was no real asset to these teams. Yes, I wore the team shirt, and yes I was one of the few team members to show up on picture day, but that was about it. Clearly, these were two sports I did not wish to pursue in my future endeavors (and it’s probably for the better).

Then came middle school. This was the time that everyone figured out what sport they actually liked playing and stuck to it. Since soccer and softball were kind of a bust for me, I turned to my old mantra of being different for the sake of being different and decided to pursue Irish-Step dancing. If you’re not sure, yes, I am referring to Riverdance. My reasons for having an overwhelming need to Irish dance are a bit hazy these days, but good lord did I love it. I even coerced two of my best friends, Jessica and Allie, and even one of my brother’s good friends, Katherine, to do it with me so that we could lead the Irish-Step dancing revolution that would change the world. We were even students of one of the top Irish-Step dancing schools in the world…we might not have been the top students, but hey, that’s got to count for something, right? We participated in the St. Patrick’s Day Parade down Constitution Avenue for three years and were able to display our talents to the whole world. Needless to say, I absolutely loved Irish-Step dancing. What I didn’t love, though, was the thought of sacrificing my entire life and life-savings for the sake of Irish-jigging my way to Ireland for the Worlds competition. Thus, the Irish dancing dream days had to come to an end. [Additionally, if you know anyone who is interested in the beautiful cardboard-based ensemble pictured to the left, please contact me.]

Finally, my final endeavor in the world of athleticism was in high school. At Holy Child (yes, this was the name of my middle school and high school that I went to for ninth grade), I played volleyball. I had never even touched a volleyball before the tryouts, but by some miracle, I was actually sort of good. And by sort of good, I mean really good. I was on the B team (catholic school system), but still participated in every single game. This whole time, I was too busy being astounded by my miracle talent to notice the immense throbbing in my hands after every practice and game. It turns out, my coach had been hoping I would never discover or question the pain. Upon asking her about it, to my dismay, I found out that I was hitting the ball completely the wrong way, and, in fact, if what I was doing didn’t hurt so much, everybody would have the miracle volleyball talent that I thought I was so special to have. Well, I tried hitting the volleyball the normal way, and, you guessed it, I was awful. I attempted to play when I switched schools, but I was pretty much hopeless. Cue the end of my volleyball career. [This is the only picture I could find that provided evidence to me being on a volleyball team. Apparently, my parents knew that I was an awful player and chose not to document the destruction on the court. Thanks mom and dad.]
After the failure of volleyball, I finished all three of my remaining high school years playing lacrosse. I’m not sure exactly why, but I adored the sport. Additionally, and, again, I am not exactly sure why, I chose to be left-handed in lacrosse. When I first started learning how to play, I figured I didn’t know how to play with either hand, so in order to be different, I chose to be a leftie. I’m not going to lie, lacrosse might have been one of the best things to ever happen to me. It’s most certainly what prevented me from becoming obese, that’s for sure, seeing as I hated exercise and loved food. Sophomore and junior year, I was on the junior varsity team and loved absolutely every minute of it. I was with some of my best friends playing a sport I loved. Did I care if I actually got any playing time? Of course not. That didn’t matter to me whatsoever. To me, playing lacrosse was one of those moments where I knew I was most definitely not the best player out there, probably not even in the top 10 best players, but I loved playing so much that I didn’t care. My senior year I was finally on the varsity team. Still not getting much play time, I ate it up. I chose to attribute a different skill that I didn’t even know I had yet when I would play defense on the field: networking. Oh, I would just chat it up with the opponents about their life, if they had any tests this week, which girls on their team were really good. Even though my coach (and some of my teammates) absolutely hated it, it sometimes worked and distracted the opponents just long enough to make them think I was actually on their team. While the majority of my lacrosse career was either spent on the sidelines or verbally distracting the other players, it was definitely the most athletic moment in my life and one of my favorite memories of high school, without a doubt.

All of this has led me to now: three years into college, three years without playing an organized sport, and probably the most athletically minded I have been in my entire life. I’ve finally come to the realization that exercise doesn’t need to be difficult and isn’t a hardship, but is rather a necessity in order for your body to be functioning to its fullest potential. No, I haven’t done any research, I didn’t see the light, I just ran 5 miles one day, and even though I was completely wiped and felt like collapsing on the ground, I felt incredible.

So, cheers to all the years that I have been living in the shadow of my younger brothers as they eat 12 brownies and then somehow manage to turn it into muscle. Cheers to the length of my lacrosse skirt in comparison to my teammates in the picture above. And finally, cheers to growing up and becoming responsible for myself. I am now off to run into oblivion throughout Tysons Corner, so keep your eyes peeled for the girl whose face turns beet red and whose sweat flows like the Niagara Falls.

Things I’m Currently Flustered With

Seeing as it’s been exactly an entire semester since I’ve last blogged (literally, my previous post was about surviving Finals in December), I figure Finals Week is the perfect time to jump back into the blogosphere. For those of my honorary readers (I know there are soooo many of you) who have been worried sick about me because I have not taken the time to update on here, never fear, I have not died. Just in case I don’t promote Her Campus Clemson enough on my Facebook and Twitter, this is the part of my blog where I inform you all that I do, in fact, have a life. I don’t have much of a life, but I do have one, I promise.

Nevertheless, today’s blog post was inspired by my immense confusion and frustration with mundane things that have distracted me from studying for my one final exam. Well, that, and my dear friend Hayley‘s uncanny ability to maintain her blogging even though she’s graduating, have inspired me to step back up to the plate of expressing my thoughts and hoping someone, somewhere, finds me even remotely interesting. Enjoy.

Things I am Currently Flustered With:

Jessica Simpson & Her Child
Before I say anything, let me clarify that I am actually a huge fan of Jessica Simpson if not only because of her spectacular shoe line. However, there are so many questions swirling my brain pertaining to this topic. The poor woman looked like she weighed as much as

I just don't understand how these two people are the same person.

a small baby elephant. How did she carry on a normal life, let alone walk at all? There are even pictures of her walking in her 3rd trimester in heels. Yes, heels. WHY?! HOW?! It just doesn’t seem plausible. So, yes, naturally, upon hearing news of J.Simp’s birth, I was expecting to hear the announcement of not one, but two children. Honestly, I wouldn’t have been surprised if  a small African village was burn unto Jessica. In addition to being flustered as to Jessica Simpson’s size, I was completely blindsided by the announcement of the child’s name: Maxwell Drew Johnson. Don’t get me wrong, it’s actually a perfectly normal baby name, especially coming from Hollywood. The only problem is, the child is a girl. I just can’t quite wrap my head around this one. I guess celebrity baby names were just becoming so ridiculous that Jessica didn’t think she could think of something crazy enough, so she just did a complete 180° and identified her child with the opposite sex. Totally normal. Jessica, I was really holding out for you. Now, I’m just incredibly confused.

The Clemson Chipotle & Its Lack of Being Open
If you know me at all, you know that I will do anything and everything for Chipotle. Some say that my obsession is something I should be embarrassed about, some say that I don’t know what I’m talking about and Moe’s is better (joke of the day), and some are intimidated by such strong feelings for a burrito. Upon hearing news that Clemson was given the honor to receive a Chipotle Mexican Grill, it’s safe to say that I was on another planet. No longer would I have to endure the lackluster burritos from Moe’s; no longer would I have to drive 45 minutes to Greenville to satisfy my craving; no longer would I be without my sacred Chipotle. Month after month, I waited patiently for the construction to come to an end, for there to be a grand opening, of which I would be the first in line, and nothing happened. Unsatisfied with the results, I took to Twitter and communicated with Chipotle HQ only to found out that the Clemson, SC location would be opening right around the first week of May. Huzzah! My calendars were marked, and my countdown began. It was only until recently that I decided to correspond with Chipotle HQ, again via Twitter, to inquire about the status of the glorious food chain. To my dismay and utter distraught, I was informed that the Clemson Chipotle was not expected to open its doors until late May, early June. I was filled with immense sadness and confusion, both of which could only be satisfied by a burrito bowl, and have since attempted to carry on my day-to-day activities without being overcome with too much a melancholy feeling.

The Activities of Library Dwellers During Finals Week
Seeing as I am writing this blog post instead of creating a study guide for my final exam on Friday, yes, I am currently located in Cooper Library. A frequent dweller of this six-story study nook, I believe myself to be an expert on the appropriate behavior and etiquette of those that choose to come to Cooper to get their work done. However, apparently, some people believe that  the proper library etiquette and behavior are thrown out the window during Finals Week, and that they are free to behave like savages. This, my friends, is false. The following is a list of things that are, in fact, still unacceptable during Finals Week:

  1. Discussing mundane details of your life at an octave higher than the respectable ‘library voice’. No, young freshman, I do not care to hear about your all-nighter and how you managed to accomplish nothing but Facebook stalk (amateur), and I especially don’t want to hear you discuss this event so loudly that I cannot hear myself think.
  2. Listening to your music so loudly that I can sing along with you. I beg your pardon, but that’s what my own headphones are for. It might be hard for you to believe, but listening to Nicki Minaj via your headphones turned all the way up is actually intrusive to my learning, and most likely intrusive to your learning, as well.
  3. Sitting in a spot with immediate access to a plug and not using your computer. Have you no manners? Or are you just an idiot? Most likely, you are both, and it is quite possible that I will stare at you until you feel uncomfortable (as you should) and remove yourself from the premises.
  4. Blatantly Facebooking for over half an hour whilst other people need the computer/plug. I can see you. No, really, I am watching you Facebook stalk. And doing this before it’s even dark outside? Give me a break. Everyone knows the only acceptable time to Facebook stalk in the library is once the sun has gone down, thus allowing your lack of focus to be somewhat excusable.
  5. Even existing in the library if you are not a Clemson student. I’m sorry, but the creepy locals that meander in Cooper and are, more often than not, seated at the library computers have got to go. Not only are you not conducive to my learning environment, you’re just flat out annoying. Leave your marital problems, inexcusable loudness,  and tending to your Farmville crops outside of my university library.

I’ve become too bothered with the nearby library-dweller who just needs to listen to his music at full capacity (on his airplane headphones, I might add) that I need to bring my flustered thoughts to an end. Enjoy, and if you have any spare time in your life this week, why, yes, I would love a Chipotle burrito bowl! Thanks for asking!