shawshank redemption

“You are The Shawshank Redemption. You have a grim view of reality. Others can find you depressing, even frightening. You may be dark and serious but, underneath all that you are filled with hope. You never give up, no matter how bad the situation looks. And it pays off for you. You are secretly sentimental.”

I recently took a quiz entitled What Movie Are You? and the above quote was my result. Now, I should mention that I’ve never actually seen The Shawshank Redemption, but I have to say that description is oddly insightful.

You have a grim view of reality.

How can I not? Reality brings us face to face with so many hardships, including (but not limited to) the following:

  • Frosted mini wheats without any frosting on them. I mean, what’s the point of that??
  • Prejudice. I never understood prejudice: I hate everybody equally.
  • Miley Cyrus.
  • Valentine’s Day.
  • Growing cancer rates in Peruvian parakeets.
  • The inability to adopt penguins as pets in America.
  • The rising cost of Disneyland tickets.
  • The fact that Hogwarts doesn’t actually exist. Though I’m still skeptical about this… I could have sworn I saw a dementor at the grocery store the other day. It was buying animal crackers.
  • TV shows like Veronica Mars getting cancelled while shows like Two and a Half Men are given free rein.
  • Chicken nuggets that aren’t shaped like dinosaurs. Again, what’s the point??

Others can find you depressing, even frightening.

Depressing, sure. My very presence is depressing. People have literally just stopped living in my presence, because my insurmountable charisma and charm make them realize they can never compare. But frightening? Is that why people scream and run away from me when I get too close to them? I always assumed people were just afraid of loving me.

You may be dark and serious but, underneath all that you are filled with hope.

What?? How dare you suggest that all this doom and gloom is just a facade! I’ve killed for less than that. Just kidding, I’ve never killed anyone… except for in a dream I had once. But they deserved it! They went to the lake without me! Rude.

OK fine. I guess I’m more hopeful than I let on. I believe that things will always get better eventually. It’s that eventually part that’s a problem. For example, I believe that one day we will have better labor laws in the United States. Today I have been at work for two and a half hours and I have already downloaded an entire PDF off the internet. I feel so overworked and under-appreciated!!! But I believe that, one day, certain labor laws will be passed that will prevent me (along with other Americans) from getting treated so unfairly at work.

(Note: Hopefully this is obvious, but that whole spiel about me being overworked at my job is pure sarcasm. Today is a very slow work day, which is why I have time to write this blog post.)

Maybe I just hide behind the bitterness and cynicism to protect myself from the pain that life brings. But deep down, I believe that someday we will all be able to look back on our most difficult times and think, “Wow. Things are so much better now.” Actually, that kind of reminds me of a song:

“One day we’ll look at the past with love.” I sure hope so.

You never give up, no matter how bad the situation looks.

A couple of weeks ago, I was riding my bike to work, pondering the purpose of life, when BAM! It came to me. Oh wait, that’s not what the BAM was. That BAM was actually the sound of me getting hit by a car. Apparently that hurts. Thanks for the warning, nobody. Actually, it wasn’t too bad. I banged up my knees a bit and my bike was rendered unusable, but other than that there was no damage to me, the driver, the car, or my sandwich. Which was a relief, because I was really concerned about my sandwich.

The point of this story is, I went to work and continued my day as normal after the accident. When you fall off the horse, you have to get right back on it, right? Only in this case, I fell off my bike, not a horse. And I didn’t get right back on it because it wasn’t working anymore. But you get the point. I probably could have made a case to get the day off work after that traumatic incident, but instead I didn’t even tell anyone at work that I got hit by a car. My supervisor still doesn’t know to this day. And when people eventually found out and asked why I didn’t tell them about my accident, I simply responded, “You never asked!” Because the first thing you should ask someone every morning at work is, “Did you get hit by a car on the way to work today?” Everybody knows that.

There have been other times where the situation looked dire but I absolutely refused to give up. Part of it might be that I’m stubborn. I mean really stubborn. If somebody tells me I need to watch a TV show, I say, “Don’t tell me what to do!” and swear off the show indefinitely. Ask anybody who has ever tried to get me to watch Avatar (the show, not the movie with the blue people).

But maybe, just maybe, there is a small part of me that always wants to keep fighting, to keep overcoming obstacles as they’re thrown at me, to keep swimming against the current. Because I believe that there is something worth fighting for–like brownies with peanut butter frosting.

You are sentimental.

Um, yes. And it’s the worst. It makes it difficult to live in the now, because I’m constantly longing for things to be the way they were. I long for that friendship to be perfect again, I long to be back in Europe, I long for the simplicity of life I once had (even if I didn’t realize it at the time). I want to go to that Killers concert again and eat a delicious cupcake in Central Park. I want to be able to swim every day in the summer. I want stability in my life, like I once had.

But you know what? Those days are over. And if I keep wanting things to go back to the way they were, I will never be able to look forward to how things can and will be in the future. I will never be able to appreciate the friends and family members I have to support me in this stage of my life. I will never be able to appreciate how incredible it is that I have a full-time job straight out of college and a comfortable bedroom I can always return to at the end of a long day. I will never be able to appreciate the experiences and opportunities that are given to me, which remind me that life, despite all of its inherent sorrows, can still provide moments of indescribable joy. If I focus all my time on bringing back something I once had, I will miss out on any possible chance to find something better.

Wow, that got cheesy really fast, so I’m going to end this post with a picture of the cast from Full House.

full house



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