Harry Potter Made Me Want to Wear Glasses

Preview:  responding to one word prompt “Vision

Growing up, I dreamed of wearing glasses.

You see, I’d been inspired by the hero of my favorite books.

“Harry Potter” by Halle Stoutzenberger CC BY-ND 2.0

Reading these books, I wanted the brains and library collection of Hermione Granger, the boisterous siblings and parents of Ron Weasley, and the classic glasses of Harry Potter.

It’s not like Harry made his glasses seem very glamorous.  At one point, they were connected with freaking duct tape!  He seemed to be constantly breaking them, and lucky for him, he had magic to handle that kind of thing.  If I was so lucky as to have glasses, I would only have an angry mom if I broke them.

Still, I really, really wanted a pair of glasses of my own.

My parents both wore glasses.  When I found their glasses on the bathroom counter, I would try them on.  Some children try on their parents’ shoes, I tried on my parents’ glasses (…to be honest, I did both).

No matter how many times I tried on their glasses as a kid, my vision remained perfectly fine.  There didn’t seem to be any magic at play to grant my wish of wearing a pair of glasses like Harry Potter.

I didn’t really outgrow this dream as I became older.  The dream was simmering on the back burner, low heat.  Now and again, the dream would resurface (to continue with the metaphor:  the dream would begin to boil).

I remember trying on a plastic replica of Harry Potter glasses.

“harry potter glasses” by Ultra-Lab CC BY-SA 2.0

They looked horrible on my big head, definitely not the right pair of glasses for my face shape.  I’m sure in the realm of magic there’s something you can do about making glasses look good on any face shape, but I live firmly in the land of dealing with the face you are given.

Unlike Harry Potter when the books progress and start to become big bummers because all of the characters you love are dying, as I progressed through the years, a very happy moment arrived.

Yes.  It’s true.

One night my mom and I were in balcony seating of a performance of the musical, Legally Blonde.  I knew we were far away from the stage, but even so, I could barely see the actors.  I told my mom this, and she handed me her glasses to test out.  I put on her glasses and… VOI-FREAKING-LA!

After so many years, I finally needed glasses.

I know this seems like the place where I should conclude with, “be careful what you wish for,” and then complain about the glasses I wear now.  Nope.  I love my glasses.  I was born to wear glasses, even if my eyes didn’t realize it at the time.

I rock my glasses every day, every event, every outfit.  I’ll never switch to contacts.  Did Harry ever magically improve his eyesight?  Don’t tell me that spell doesn’t exist.

My only complaint, after years of wearing glasses and years of dreaming for them, is that I had a spell to clean the ever-present grime off my glasses.  I bet Harry would have a good tip for that.

Dear reader:  do you read Harry Potter?  Do you wear glasses, contacts?  Tell me how you really feel.

Featured Image:  Steven Worster CC BY-ND 2.0


TV Show Finales: Too Little, Too Late

Preview: discussing television shows that had lackluster finales after too many seasons and predicting current shows that will suffer the same fate.

In light of The Good Wife’s series finale a couple days ago, I’ve been thinking about finales. Specifically, I’ve been thinking about how these finales are often too little and too late.

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been a fan of a show, happy with the first couple seasons, and then desperately wishing it would just end already by the last season.

when the show does end, the finale can’t make up for the fact that you’ve suffered each week for countless weeks now. Maybe it features a cameo from a long gone character or montage of flashbacks of the good times (this tactic is them trying to make you forget all the bad times that have happened since then).

We’ve seen that too little, too late finales give a bad name to series finales. They take advantage of the fact that they even get a finale—the shows that are suddenly canceled don’t get this honor, for example.

These lucky shows go on and on and on, to the dismay of the unlucky viewers. They play to our loyalty and hopes that if we keep watching, just maybe the show will find a way to its former glory. I’m letting you know now to change the channel. Returning to the former glory never. happens.

It’s exactly us, the viewers, on which these shows rely. The shows cling to whatever amount of viewers and ratings they manage to keep. In reality, no amount of cling-wrap can save them from their point of no return.

Really? By Jim Bauer CC BY-ND 2.0

There are plenty of examples of shows like this that I’ve experienced throughout my watching-too-much-tv years. Here are 3 highlights of the torture I’ve felt as I sat on my couch and winced at the TV screen.

  • The Good Wife – Of course I had to include the show that inspired this blog post. For a majority of the time, the show was very good, and I’m sad to think that it’s over and we likely won’t see another show like it. However, those feelings don’t change the facts. The Good Wife started to lose its way, especially after it lost actors like Archie Panjabi and Josh Charles. The finale couldn’t recover from the last two seasons, even if it tried by giving fans the return of Will.
  • Glee – I absolutely loved Glee when it began. I saw them on tour, bought a $40 t-shirt that later shrunk in the wash, and I still loved it. I can’t say the same of the show. Somewhere around Season Three, Glee started to become painful… and I couldn’t look away. I finally stopped watching somewhere around the last season. Everything became over the top and cringe worthy. I’ll never forget those early seasons, but I really wish I could forget the later ones… the finale failed to deliver in the face of these horrible later seasons.
  • How I Met Your Mother – Again, another show I loved. HIMYM was great most of the time. I’m still wondering why they made the last season in one weekend, but I’ve moved on from that confusion to the topic everyone knows so well: that finale. Unlike my other examples, this show’s finale was actually much, much worse than the rest of the show. That’s all I can say on the matter without entering a really long rant.

Those are shows with finales that could not make up for their mistakes, and how could they? Redemption doesn’t just happen in 40-some minutes plus commercials.

“End” by Hitchster CC BY 2.0

Now, a popular theory is that we should learn from our history to prevent the same mistakes from happening in the future. However, another theory is that history repeats itself.

When it comes to television, I tend to think that the second theory is more accurate. Accordingly, I’ve picked 3 shows I think will face the same fate of having a finale that is too little, too late.

  • Grey’s Anatomy – Okay, I love Grey’s, so I do feel bad about putting it on this list. It’s nothing personal, I’m just looking at the facts. Sandra Oh and Patrick Dempsey fled in recent years, and they both played characters that were crucial to the show. I actually started to like the show more after Patrick Dempsey left.  Word on the street is that Grey’s is actually doing better since his departure.  Still, I’m amazed they haven’t run out of story lines yet, and I don’t mean that in a good way. After all this time, the finale will definitely be in the too late category.
  • The Big Bang Theory – I think this show has been airing for approximately as long as I’ve been watching TV (hint:  that’s a while). Every time I turn on the TV, there is a Big Bang Theory episode on. They must make crazy money with all of these reruns, so I guess that’s why they keep up with the new episodes. Enough already.
  • The Vampire Diaries – I know there are people out there who think things involving hot vampires should never end, (I’m looking at you, Twilight fans) but this show really needs to end. Nina Dobrev already got out. The show still attempts to chug on without its main character and trying to keep a spin off alive. You just know the finale is going to involve all these cameos from dead people and, of course, Nina Dobrev herself. It won’t make a difference. This finale will be way too late for the show’s own good.

Quit while you’re ahead, guys. Well… some of you are ahead.

Take a hint and realize all good things must come to an end. It’s a cliché, but it’s true.

Look at the bright side: once you give us a good series finale, you can start looking forward to that reunion special/series revival.

Dear reader: I know you watch TV. What are some shows you wish would end already? If I angered you with any of my selections, let me know.

Featured Image:  Ryan Merritt CC BY 2.0

Cubicle Musings

Preview:  this blog post will cover my thoughts on my cubicle and cubicle decorating, as well as showing the pictures I used to decorate my cubicle.

Let’s get to it.

The minute I walked into my internship, I knew I was going to like it here.  As my boss gave me a run down of the building, a couple places really dazzled me.  One was the supply closet–an endless supply (within reason, of course) of pens, paper, and paper clips.

As a student who survived a whole semester on a single 5-subject notebook and one of two pens, the closet is simply amazing.  The supply closet wasn’t even the best part.  It’s my cubicle that’s the star.

I know cubicles are not exactly thrilling or even positive to many people.  Some people seem to really hate cubicles, like the artist of this graffiti does, I assume:

“Death by Cubicle,” James Stencilowsky CC BY 2.0

I get it.  The beige walls that are as tall as me, the shelving unit that takes up too much space of my already limited surroundings, the fluorescent desk light that I never turn on, the overhead fluorescent light that is always on, the chair that doesn’t offer any back support… these are all things I experience every day.

… but I’m still super pumped to have a cubicle.

Honestly, I can’t tell you exactly why.  It’s probably a mix of “I feel like an adult for the first time” and “I’m an intern so they could have stuck me in the supply closet or mail room with an itsy bitsy desk and I would have still had to say thank you.”  I’m fresh to the working world and at the bottom of the totem pole, but my cubicle doesn’t make it feel that way.

However, cubicle philosophy was not my first thought about my cubicle.  That was a couple thoughts later.  My first thought was:  I need to decorate it.  I know, I know.  I know how that sounds, and I know how that statement deserves a couple eye rolls.  If you reference the above description, however, you should understand why my cubicle needed some sprucing.

It wasn’t that easy though.  I took to the internet for examples and was immediately intimidated.  Just look at these on Pinterest!

“Castle_Cube_4” by Brent Ozar CC BY-SA 2.0

When you plaster wall paper up on the walls, I don’t know if it is even a cubicle anymore.  As fancy as some of those are, I think they’re most like cubicle castles.  I wouldn’t be surprised if there’s a “DIY Cubicle Turret” video somewhere in the mix on that page.

I decided to go a more simple route and use the supplies available to me:  a color printer, a pair of scissors, and bulletin board pins.  I printed five pictures that I thought would really brighten up the place.

First, a wonderful picture of a print by Roaring Softly (which I am going to buy) that combines two things I love:  coffee and Gilmore Girls.  I knew my cubicle needed decor that illustrated my coffee addiction, and I was happy I could incorporate my obsession with Gilmore Girls at the same time.  I think this picture really shows that I’m a successful multi-tasker.

Second, this picture features one of the most important people in my life:  the one and only Leslie Knope.  I identify with Ms. Knope–I was even Leslie for Halloween this year.  We both have a lot in common, like a love for Joe Biden, breakfast food, and unadulterated enthusiasm for the things and people we love.  This picture features a couple of those concepts.

Leslie Knope
(I got the picture from this article, but added the caption myself because I 100% wanted this exact quote.  It’s about work, so it’s relevant to work, right?)

Pictures three, four, and five  are all related to each other by a common theme:  they are things I wish I had in my cubicle, but I do not.

Here’s the window I wish I had.

“Blackwell House View” by Andrew Gustar CC BY-ND 2.0

Here’s the plants I wish I had.

Finally, here we have the inspirational desk I wish I had.

Maybe someday if I have a more permanent working situation, I will invest in a castle cubicle, complete with turrets and a moat.  Until that day, I think my pictures have accomplished my decor needs for now.

To anyone reading this blog post:  do you have experience with cubicles?  I’d love to hear your cubicle musings!

Featured Image:  Mark Sebastian CC BY-SA 2.0