When I was a freshman, my sister was in eighth grade. There was a boy in two of her periods who would ask her out every single day. (Third and seventh period, if I remember correctly.) All day during third and seventh she would repeatedly tell him no. She didn’t beat around the bush, she didn’t lie and say she was taken—she just said no.
One day, in third period, after being rejected several times, he said; “I have a gun in my locker. If you don’t say yes, I am going to shoot you in seventh.”
10:41 pm |
May 26 2014
| 228,973 notes
this tweet is everything.
And perpetuates the myth that mentally ill people are typically violent
10:23 pm |
May 26 2014
| 13,832 notes
Jetlag door het kanaal
Day II: Amsterdam
"8:00? It’s so early, let’s sleep in for just another hour."
Four hours later, we woke up to unexpected noonday sunlight pouring into our window. Rather than set an alarm, we had slipped into a jetlag’d coma, nearly sleeping past the checkout time (thank goodness for Marriott status giving us late check-out).
The previous night, we had continued our walk through the streets of Amsterdam, finding our way first to a Mediterranean bar (where I had another Brouwerij ‘t IJ beer) and then, by accidental way of the Red Light District, Nieuwmarkt, where we planned on eating. Early enough that we didn’t have to wait an hour for a table, Emily and I shared a delicious meal of fondue at Cafe Bern, a cozy bar-restaurant with unfinished walls peeking out from underneath layers of exhibition, concert, and festival posters. We made our way back to the hotel in fits and starts, finally settling into bed at around midnight.
On Sunday, after discovering we were several hours behind schedule, we decided to forgo a trip to the Van Gogh Museum and focus instead on the Rijksmuseum, where we had bought advance tickets in anticipation of a crowd. We were pleasantly surprised to find that only a modest number of people had chosen that afternoon as their museum day—probably because the weather was finally easing into summer. No mammoth crowds would stand between us and the works of van der Heist, Vermeer, and Rembrandt.
After a lively argument over Rembrandt’s use of light in The Syndics and the relative level of detail and pomposity in three different paintings of militias, we saw an early painting of Piet Mondrian’s (how crazy to see a representational painting by this man?), among other things, and then retired to the café to caffeinate and re-up our blood sugar. It is a truth universally known that museum cafés are usually good, and usually overpriced, and the Rijksmuseum did not disappoint in either respect. If you ever go, try the sandwiches or a coffee muffin—not to be confused with a coffee cake, the coffee muffin actually has coffee in it.
Several hours later, after the coffee muffin wore off, after our jaunt through the Prospect Park-esque Vondelpark, after collecting our luggage from the hotel and trudging the two blocks to Amsterdam Centraal, we found ourselves watching the Low Country scenery whizzing past from the window of our night train compartment (“Look, a windmill!” says Emily) and making the decision to leave the window open through the night regardless of what the four fellow-travelers we shared the compartment with thought (especially the smelly backpacker who boarded in Utrecht). We were comfortable, if tired, well-fed, if sore, and decompressing from the crush of row house-against-narrow street-against-water. As we crossed the border into Germany, we settled into our berths to cross the border of consciousness into sleep.
4:34 am |
May 22 2014
"We’re going to eat our way through Europe"
Day I: Amsterdam
Chicago’s International Terminal is compact in a way that makes it seem prematurely outdated as it bursts at the seams with passengers. When Emily and I arrived at Schiphol Airport in Amsterdam, though, we had between us and customs a walk of roughly ten minutes through Schiphol’s shaded, modernist arrivals terminal. Making our way to customs felt like passing along a gradient, a slow insertion into foreignness. The Netherlands is a cosmopolitan country where everyone seems to speak English—in almost every encounter with a Dutch waiter or salesperson, my interlocutor began speaking in English before switching to English, without missing a beat, as soon as they realized I couldn’t understand. In light of this, nearly all of the signs in Schiphol’s arrival terminal are in English only. As you glide along moving walkways in the direction of customs and Dutch soil, the sweep second hand on the clocks tracking your elapsed time, Dutch begins to infiltrate the periphery of your vision, its presence growing until every sign is bilingual.
After a short train ride to Amsterdam Centraal, we set out to find our hotel. If when I went to France at 17 the scale of my map was too small, in Amsterdam the scale of my map was too big. We overshot the hotel and found ourselves walking down a side street until. We had to stop and ask for directions so we could rid ourselves of our suitcases and then resume losing ourselves in the narrow and crowded streets along the equally narrow and crowded canals. Day 1 was largely devoted to walking, the first of many such days, I suspect. We discovered early on a few important things: Google Maps’ offline feature is a game-changer, I would need to buy sunscreen as soon as possible, and not reserving tickets to the Anne Frank House was a bad idea (sorry, Anne, I’m sure we’ll be back someday).
Instead of going to the Anne Frank House, we decided to ditch the crowds and work our way counter-clockwise around the city, following the canals (which are laid out in concentric ‘U’ shapes). I had known that the canals are central to the life of the city, but I was surprised at their ubiquity, both physically and culturally. Mixed in with the long, low tourist boats were small pleasure craft and even unrigged sailboat hulls, putt-putting down the canal with families and friends listening to music and sipping coffee, wine, or beer. These watercraft deftly navigated the waterway, which was made even narrower by the houseboats moored along one or both sides of the canal. Some of the houseboats were less boat than house, the typical exemplar to all appearances a squat, pre-fab ranch house floating in the water. Others were old barges that had been converted, with varying degrees of attention and care, into homes, some of which could only be identified as houses by the small address numbers affixed next to the companionway.
The best decision we made on Day 1 was to go to buy a brick of gouda and a jar of pear jam at a small cheeseshop. After picking up a couple bottles of beer made at Brouwerij ‘t IJ (local to Amsterdam and very tasty), we found ourselves sitting on the bank of a shaded side canal, breaking off hunks of gouda and dipping it in the jam (as I write, from a night train en route to Munich, we still have some cheese left, but not much). It turns out that once you get away from the throngs of tourists visiting Madame Tussaud’s or the Red Light District, the pace of life is quite slow. As we ate, we could see a few couples, sitting outside their house down the street or on one of the balconies of the building opposite us, all reading. (I am now convinced that the quintessential Dutch weekend activity for the over-50 set is to sit on the stoop with a coffee or a glass of wine while reading the paper.) A man lounged in an inflatable dinghy and slowly buzzed past beneath our dangling feet. Children rolled past on scooters, followed by their mother. I took another swig of ‘t IJ while Emily pronounced: “We’re going to eat our way through Europe.”
7:35 am |
May 19 2014
Look at that subtle off-white coloring. The tasteful thickness of it. Oh, my God. It even has a watermark.
7:56 pm |
April 23 2014
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