Where I’ve Been

Where has the time gone? Seriously have you seen my time? I can’t find it anywhere.

You wanna hear a really obvious statement? Life gets really busy sometimes.

My life has been super busy lately, let me get you up to speed.

As of right now, I work two part-time jobs, one as an early morning custodian at BYU, (4am-8am baby! Sleep is for the weak!) and the other as a Deli Clerk at Day’s Market, a local grocery store. (SCHLICE SCHLICE) On top of that, I’m taking a couple of classes at BYU still. Only like 6 credit hours though so not totally insane, just partially. Also I’ve started writing pitches in an attempt to get a few freelance writing jobs, figured I should actually try and make money at this at some point right? With all that the few spare moments I have left over I try to make sure that I’m spending enough time with my wonderful and lovely girlfriend Lindsay.

This leaves just no time to do much of anything, let alone sit down and try to write blog posts that aren’t absolute trash. Now should be the time where I present some sort of remedy for this problem, but frankly, I don’t have much of a solution worked out. The best I’ve come up with so far is to get back on a regular sleeping schedule, but anyone who knows me knows that me and sleep have just never worked out. We’re like Ross and Rachel, one of is always pining for the other but it’s just not gonna work out. Maybe it will one day, I haven’t finished Friends yet so I really don’t know. I’m just trying to use the references now that I actually know them. (I wonder what the equivalent of “WE WERE ON A BREAK” would be in this analogy? it was only a nap? I don’t know, probably stretching it too far)

There is something I can promise for sure though. If and when I do manage to find some time that isn’t dedicated to something else I’ll be sitting in my chair, slapping away at my keyboard to try and write blogs. Just be aware that because of time restrictions I won’t have time to research anything so I’m just gonna have to write about what I already know really well. So lots of movie and League of Legends ramblings are coming your way! (YAY everyone loves league of legends!) Later!


Important Q’s About The Bachelor of Provo

So the universe hates me and I wasn’t given a new episode of The Bachelor of Provo to dissect, but I’m determined to keep doing write-ups on this show every Monday. So in lieu of having a new episode to talk about, I’m just gonna ask some questions that I think could have a pretty big impact on the outcome of the show. I’m aware that I’m probably taking a reality show based in Provo too seriously, but what else am I going to do with my time? Something healthy and productive? LAME

Just to prove how way too seriously I’m taking this show here’s a fun fact. The average age of the remaining contestants is 19.3. Am I out of control? Whose to say? (I am)

When we’re introduced to Collin he states that he’s never been in a real relationship, first and second dates only. Combine that with the fact that he’s young and fresh off of his mission this leads me to ask, “Has Collin had his first kiss yet?” It’s entirely possible that he hasn’t right? If he hasn’t that can totally change the game, it would give a huge advantage to whatever girl can grab a smooch from him first. It would also pose a real risk because if a girl tried to force that moment (ya know that’s gonna happen) it would probably spell the end of their run on the show. A huge opportunity just sitting there if someone can navigate it properly.

I’ve also come to believe that another enormous opportunity is waiting for these girls. Collin is a recently returned missionary who hasn’t adjusted back to ordinary life yet, whoever can genuinely make a spiritual connection with him is going to have an HUGE leg up. Despite the use of all caps, the real keyword of that sentence is genuinely. Can they do it though? Can they connect with Collin over the gospel? Much like the kissing thing if someone tries to force a spiritual moment to happen it’s going to blow up in their face worse than that time Dwight used an insecticide grenade. I obviously can’t be certain of this, but I’m guessing that none of the girls on this show are return missionaries themselves. Pretty much because if any of them were then they would’ve brought it up when Collin talked about his mission. (which they all pretty much asked about) Shame, that could’ve been a huge boon for someone. Perhaps it’ll be like this show’s version of a twist, “Gotcha, turns out I served a mission and it was also in Argentina Collin!” *Audience collectively gasps*

Another big advantage these girls could give themselves is to stop chewing freaking gum while on camera. Who thought that was a good idea? Whoever it was fire their sorry butt it’s awful. Hopefully, they fix that in episode 2, but we’ll only know on the 25th when it airs. Until then I’ll just stare at my wall or something. Later!

Photo credit to @TheBachelorofProvo Instagram, check it out!


Hot Takes: 2019

I did this sometime last year and I want to try and make it a yearly effort to just throw a bunch of hot takes out there. I want to do this one because it’s fun. Two, because I often make myself out to be an authority on whatever I’m talking about (and sometimes that is the intent) but mostly I’m just speaking from my perspective and my opinion really isn’t any more valuable than anyone else and what better way to demonstrate that then to just throw a bunch of potentially bad opinions out there. Three, Hot takes often spark some sort of conversation and I thoroughly enjoy those types of conversations. So let’s get spicy!

Hot Take #1: The Greatest Showman still sucks. I’ll admit that I’ve come around on the music (mostly) but my goodness the rest of it is just so boring.

Hot Take #2: If you cook your steak well done or refuse to even try sushi because anything not thoroughly cooked is scary, you are a coward who doesn’t understand how to enjoy the food. I didn’t think this was that hot of a take but I’ve talked to more and more people in the past year who refuse to eat steak if it isn’t well done and I’m just saddened by that.

Hot Take #3: Being single is objectively worse than being in a relationship and single people constantly spread “fake news” about it being the other way around. I don’t blame you if do say that, I used to spread this erroneous narrative myself, but remember you’re lying to others, and to yourself when you speak these lies. Don’t give me this, “but my independance!” nonsense. Millions upon millions of people want their independence as well as a relationship, find another one of those people and start dating them. Maybe I’m biased on this one though…

Hot Take #4: In-N-Out and Little Ceaser’s are basically the same thing. Cheap food that’s good for its price point but entirely outclassed by anything even slightly more expensive. (I know I bash a lot on In-N-Out, but it’s way too funny to me how upset In-N-Out fanatics gets when you dare question its supremacy over the fast food game.)

Hot Take #5: Cable news in its entirety isn’t worth watching, at least in the US. This probably isn’t even that hot of a take, but all of the cable news networks are pretty much garbage. CNN and MSNBC dramatically overhype things, Fox basically just says nice things about Trump regardless of what he’s actually doing and… is there actually anyone else? At least anyone else that people actually watch? Don’t think so and frankly I don’t care.

Hot Take #6: Black Panther was the most over-rated movie of 2018. DISCLAIMER! I’m not trying to discredit Black Panther’s cultural significance, in fact, I think it’s fair to say it was the most significant movie of the year, but when you look at the nuts and bolts of it all, its a barely above average Marvel movie. Infinity War is a better movie, so is Thor: Ragnarok, Doctor Strange, Winter Soldier, Iron Man 1, Avengers 1, Civil War, and both Guardians of the Galaxy movies. That’s 9 of the 20 released so far. It’s smack dab in the middle. FIGHT ME.

Ok, that’s probably enough hot takes for now, and I have a feeling the Black Panther one is sure to get some people riled right up. Later!


2019

I’ve been pretty quiet on the blog this month and thats mostly got to do with the insane schedule that is December when you’re a student (actually that probably extends to anyone, it just feels extra rushed when you add finals to it) but also I’ve been using what spare moments I’ve had to think about and reflect on the year as many of us do.

I’ve been focusing most of my reflection on how I did as a blogger this year and I feel like I can confidently say I did ok this year. I doubled the number of posts on this blog this year, I wrote a bunch of blogs that really felt good about and wanted to write for a long time, but the year was not without its own stumblings.

I really feel like I’ve struggled to write about movies, more so this year than other years. I feel as though that when I did write about movies I got very scatterbrained and wasn’t able to convincingly convey why I thought a movie was good or bad or even why people should see it. I think a big part of my problem was that I kept splitting myself by trying to give a personal take while also sound objective and those two things just do not mesh at all. Going into 2019 I want to really focus more on my personal take on movies, how I connect with the stories, characters and moments. A little less focus on how nice the camera movement is and other stuff like that.

Keeping on the topic of movies I actually want to cut back on how many movies I see. For the past few years I’ve consistently managed to make a hundred odd trips to the movies, while this resulted in me seeing some wonderful movies I might not have seen, it’s also resulted in me seeing some huge turds of films. (I’m looking right at you Wrinkle in Time, gah you suck.) I really like to skip as many turds as possible in 2019 as it comes to films. In the past, it’s been fine because I’ve had a ton of spare time on my hands by not being social at all, but now that time is a less abundant resource (not complaining about that, I love having things to actually do outside of school) I really need to focus on movies I’m truly excited about.

Wow, I did not intend for this post to be so focused on movies, I really wanted to focus on what I will be writing about in 2019, and that’s me. Just me. Not in like a egotistical sense like, “All I want to talk about it me” but rather focusing more on the introspection, self-reflection, and personal opinion that I wrote during the summer and fall of this year. It was fun to write and honestly it was better than 90% of the other stuff I’ve written here. So get ready to take a closer look at Jonny Tollestrup in 2019, or just like don’t read this blog, it’s your call. Later.

Pika Pika

Something I’ve come to realize over the past couple of weeks is that not only do I see significantly more movies than the average person, but I also follow movie news much more closely, especially when it comes to trailers. I’ll be totally honest with you, I thought most people watched most trailers that came out for movies. There only a couple minutes long and they’re these little snippets of films to come. I love em! A good trailer can really take a person from somewhat uninterested to genuinely hyped for a film. This is the case for me with Detective Pikachu.

Yeah no, you can still read. There is a Detective Pikachu movie coming out next year. When I first heard about it I immediately thought, “This is going to be amazing with how weird it is or an absolute train wreck right from the get-go.”  Just think about the premise of it.

1. A live-action pokémon movie, already pretty nuts.

2. Pikachu is a detective in it. What?

3. Pikachu is played by Ryan Reynolds. Actually, this one makes a lot of sense.

With all these things considered if really feels like the movie should be just a total mess. Then the trailer for it dropped today. Here it is.

I don’t know about you, but I’m leaning on it’s going to be amazing with how weird it is line of thought. First off, the pokémon largely look really good. There’s a little bit of questionable/uncanny feeling for some of them, but for the most part were in a good spot, especially with Pikachu him… her… do pokémon have genders? I don’t know, but the point is that Pikachu looks friggen adorable. Also, this movie looks genuinely entertaining, and I can say that with some level of authority because for whatever strange reason my parents didn’t let me or my siblings play pokémon growing up so I don’t really have those rose-tinted glasses who just wants to see pokémon in real life. This trailer has actually got me excited to see this movie, although I (and also everyone else) shouldn’t be putting this much stock into a trailer, we’ve all seen great trailers that turned into dumpster fires of movies. I’m looking right at you Suicide Squad, now go back to your dark corner and think about what you did. Later.

Purple

 

IMG-1524(1)
So this is a thing.

 

I probably need to explain myself right? Also, side note, even though I’m rocking some hardcore RBF right there, I swear I’m actually pretty good with how my hair looks. Moving on now.

Can I just give folks the line, “girlfriends. Not even once” and move on? Is that satisfactory? No? It makes it sound like my girlfriend did this out of spite? Fine. Come on though, it’s not like I don’t have some history of making rash decisions regarding my hair on basically zero information. I legit shaved my head bald on nothing more than the prompt of a roommate asking if I wanted to. (That one was a big mistake though, still a good story though.)

So Here’s the basic timeline for how I ended up with purple dye in my hair. Honestly, it’s a pretty boring story. Basically, my girlfriend was dying her hair purple. Not like all of it, just like the bottom half, I guess, jeez this would be easier to explain if I just had a picture. Hold on a sec… Do I have one on my phone… No? wtf am I even trying as a boyfriend? Whatever.

Anyways she’s dying her hair and once she finishes up with it there’s a reasonable amount of dye leftover. Not a ton, but enough that it would feel wasteful to simply throw it out. At this point, Lindsay (the girlfriend) shoots me a look and with a reserved excitement asks, “Can I put it in your hair?”

Now, this next little bit takes place in about 5 seconds but takes a lot longer to explain because it involves a number of decisions that take place in my own mind. Just so you know and understand the impulsive nature of this whole thing.

When I’m asked questions like this there are two things I think about. The first is always, “What’s the worst that could happen?”. With dye involved the worst that can happen is actually pretty bad though.  At least to some people. Really in my mind, the worst thing that could happen is that it looks just dreadful, in which case the solution to my problem is pretty simple, wear a hat. I’m already known to frequently wear baseball caps so it wouldn’t even be a stretch to just wear one every day. Sure it might get a little awkward at church but I’m dating someone from the same congregation as me every Sunday is already an awkward cringefest with every member of the bishopric asking me for updates so adding the awkward conversation about a hat seems an easy task. That being said that literally a worst case scenario and frankly its pretty unlikely so I’m confident at that point to proceed on the merits of “what’s the worst that could happen.”

The second question I always ask myself when making these sort of decisions is whether or not this will make a good story.  I thought there was a reasonable chance and frankly, it’s up to you folks reading this blog post to decide if I was right about that. Either way, I thought the probability of this being a good story was high enough to proceed.

Remember all these thoughts happen in about 5 seconds.

“Sure, why not?” is what I opted for as my response. Boy, you wouldn’t believe how Lindsay’s face lit up when she heard that. Her excitement was only matched by her other roommate’s concern for my well-being. They must have thought I’d lost my bloody mind. Which is true, but like I lost it ages ago this is far from the event that confirmed my insanity.

Before we can get started with the dye though we need to solve the problem of my shirt. See I had apparently made the mistake of wearing a pretty nice shirt that day. Probably because I hadn’t realized that I would be dying my hair that day, but hey that’s my bad for not being able to see into the future. Luckily for me Lindsay’s roommate Abby had an old t-shirt that was just large enough to wrap around my neck to shield my nice button up. Oddly enough the colour of it matched pretty close to the shirt I was wearing so it looked like I had like a turtleneck on so now I also know that turtlenecks are an absolute no-go for me. Two birds one stone or something like that.

Pseudo-turtleneck in hand though I was now prepped for the dye, which Lindsay applied despite the fact that her roommate is a licensed cosmetologist. Still not 100% sure why it happened that way, but hey I’m not here to complain just tell stories. I was pretty convinced that the dye wasn’t even going to stick all that well anyways. It had been exposed for a pretty long time and absolutely nothing had been done to my hair to prepare it for dye. Literally, she just took the dye and painted (is that a good word for this? idk) the top of my head with it. So how likely was it for the dye to even stick? Pretty good as it turns out.

Half an hour later and things have settled and it’s time to give my hair a quick wash before revealing the final product. Minor snag though. The Branbury, the apartment complex me and Lindsay both live at, is BYU approved housing. Which means there are a few arbitrary rules that have to be followed. Like guys can’t use the bathrooms in girls apartments. (I KNOW ITS RIDICULOUS YOU DON’T HAVE TO TELL ME!) This means that in order to wash my hair out I have to lean over and use their kitchen sink. Perfect. So I’ve got my head in a kitchen sink and as I’m getting my hair washed out I’m seeing a lot of purples come out. Figures I think to myself, the dye didn’t stick, which is a shame but removes any fears I would’ve had about how it’ll look.

Nope. Turns out that really normal (I really know nothing about hair do I?) and a couple of minutes later I’m looking in the mirror at this freaking anime character that’s taken the place of myself. Oh well, now I can at least live out my fantasy of being an anime character, though the magic powers haven’t appeared yet which is straight bs. Also the huge freaking smile on Lindsay’s face when she saw my hair was pretty worth it as well. Not even to mention that it doesn’t even look all that bad. Maybe next time I’ll go all out and dye all my hair… Nah, that ish is expensive. Later!

Building Childhood

Life is a stressful experience. No matter who you are, what you do, or how you do it eventually stress begins to weigh down on you pretty heavily. For some that weight feels like you’ve got one too many books in your backpack and you can just soldier on, for others, it’s closer to having your backpack replaced with a solid cinderblock, that is also somehow on fire. That’s not so easy to cope with.

Either way, everyone eventually needs to destress in some way or another.  This is usually where peoples hobbies come into play, sometimes though taking that hour or two with your knick-knacks isn’t enough and you need that thing most everyone dreams about.

A Vacation. To take some time and literally just leave your world behind while you go off and soak some rays, eat good food, and do all the other touristy stuff everyone low-key likes doing but we’re all too cool for it or something. Maybe you prefer a staycation because you actually really like where you live and just want to ignore work emails for a week. I like ignoring emails, especially ones I’m supposed to respond to.  (btw I still answer my emails) You might be like me though and be lacking in both the time to take a vacation or the funding for one either. What’s a person to do then?

You know what I did? I built a car. Out of cardboard.

I honest to goodness didn’t think that building a cardboard car would be a distressing experience when I started doing it. Arts and crafts have never been my strong suit and I usually find it pretty frustrating while I’m doing them. I don’t like looking at my shoddy craftsmanship, and of all the things in the world, it’s one of the few things that makes me feel self-conscious. Why? Who knows, it’s honestly the dumbest thing but it’s the way this stupid mind works.

So why was I building this thing in the first place if I thought it might stress me out.

Same reason I do half the dumb things I do because a pretty girl asked me if I wanted to. Come on now, who do you think is writing this thing? In my defence, I’m now dating that pretty girl, so double win because I got a dope cardboard car and a girlfriend out of it. Although I doubt it was the cardboard car that made her want to go out with me… I should ask her about that. Might get awkward if she says it was though…

Sorry I was trailing off there. Cars! I built one. Yes, I did. This is what it looked like. At least the back of it.

IMG-1413.JPGI know what you’re thinking here. Good lord Jonny, that doesn’t look good at all. Like Jeez, the wheeze dude my 3rd grader could make a better-looking car. You are 100% correct. Also, your 3rd grader can fight me. I ain’t afraid to hit a child. (jk I am oh please don’t let me get into trouble for that.) This is very far from being a well made, good looking piece of art. You know what it does look like though? A beat-down wood-panelled van from the 70’s. So considering what I was going for I think I did a pretty bang-up job with the creation of this vehicle.  I probably could’ve improved it by using a smaller box for the bottom portion allowing the car to be better proportioned, but that sounds like some try hard bs that I just ain’t into.

Trying to make this look like a convincing replica of an actual vehicle would’ve defeated the entire purpose of making it in the first place. This was about tapping back into the childlike wonder of creating things. To simply make something for the sake of making it, not to try and be the best, or worry about how many likes you were going to get on Facebook/Instagram. This was about letting go of everything that makes a person an adult and just making something fun. Let me tell you something, this thing was wicked fun to make! (Admittedly having great company around whilst I made it helped a lot, but still a worthwhile activity)

You might be thinking, “Jonny are you going to explain just how you made this thing? What was the process?” Sod off buddy, that also defeats the purpose. If you’re wondering how I did this let me tell you something. Don’t wonder, just go make it. All you need is a bunch of cardboard and some imagination, cardboard is freaking everywhere so that shouldn’t be too hard to get a hold of, imagination is apparently a harder thing for some people. I suppose if you’re really lacking in that area you can hit a tab of acid before starting your car, but you didnt hear taht from me and I won’t be held responsible for what happens if you do that. Just don’t think about these things so much and let yourself have fun creating. I promise that while its not as good as taking a vacation its a lot more affordable! Later.

 

 

Belated Birthdays

It’s been a busy couple of days so I haven’t found the time to get a birthday blog post written out.

Ok, let’s talk about my year. When I turned 25 last year the reality was that I was not in a really good place. Turning 25 was a point where I made a realization that I really wasn’t doing what I wanted to be doing with my life. I felt creatively stunted, burnt out, and easily worst of all totally unmotivated to even bother trying to change things.

Luckily this didn’t persist. I got back into writing with a determined focus to find my voice in words. I still think there’s a lot of room for refinement, but I think this whole informal, conversational tone I’ve been doing lately has been a really good fit for me and it’s shown itself in the outstanding improvements to my writing over this past year.  I’m honest to goodness stunned with how much progress I made as a writer in the past year, and also with how much room I still have to grow. I’m really excited to keep improving this blog and the rest of my writing in general.

Life didn’t change just in terms of writing through this last year either. I’ve made it abundantly clear in my blog that my relationship with religion, for the most part, has been pretty casual, there was a brief moment where I took it real serious and it didn’t pan out well so for a very long time I kept it at arms distance. Maybe enough time had passed and my heart had softened, or maybe living in Utah for two years has just worn me down, but religion has taken a much more prominent role in my life again. I’ll never be one of those Peter Priesthood types that really push religion out of every orifice of my body but it definitely matters to me in a real way again. Weirdly enough it was all the little social things the church does that got me actually taking my religion seriously again. So even though I like to make fun of things like FHE, Ward activities, Break the Fast, etc. (sorry if you’re not up on your Morm… Member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saint’s lingo)  I have to admit that those things played a big role in actually getting me back to church on a regular basis.

Combining with a newfound sense of focus and pride in my writing and a renewed faith, I also found it in me this year to actually try and be a social human being again. I felt like I actually had the confidence to put myself out there, I mean I’m still pretty introverted so it really worked out more like I fell into a social circle but hey, take those W’s where you can find them. I did actually put myself out there in the world of dating and experienced legitimate success. What the F… That still strikes me as utterly and totally bizarre. Maybe I’ll get used to that at some point, but it’s probably more likely that I’ll continue to be in total bewilderment for the time being.

So long as I remember to take deep breaths and not act like a total weirdo I should be fine. Wait I do act like a total weirdo like all the time… oh boy…

Weird rambling about dating that I’m definitely going to get flak for aside, my 26th year on this planet turned out pretty great. I’m pretty happy with how it all turned out. I’m not satisfied though, I need to build on the successes I had last year and continue to refine myself and what I do. That should be a lot of fun. Later!

Split

I swear this is the last one of these things, we’re going back to random stuff like movies real soon.

Going through the message my uncle sent me several weeks ago and taking the time to think through some of the ideas presented in it has got me thinking about identity. How do we see ourselves? For a lot of people, it’s a really tough question, not because we don’t know how we see ourselves, but rather that we can’t be totally sure that the way we see ourselves is accurate.  Do we overexaggerate our strengths and underestimate weaknesses in character? Do we do the opposite and consistently underestimate our own abilities whilst downplaying personal failings.

Are we at times delusional about who we are at our cores?  Do we think we’re really funny when that’s just not the case? Do we think ourselves bland and basic when in reality we’re fascinating and unique individuals? Who knows?

Here’s what I know about my identity. For most of my life, I’ve felt very clearly split into two separate identities.  Not in like a mental disorder kind of way where my whole personality shifts. It’s more like I can pretty clearly see that based on what decisions I make I can go down two radically different paths in life.

Let me elaborate.

On one hand, is JonnyT the entertainer. He thinks only at the moment and never about what path his life might take. He’s creative, he’s funny, and he loses his mind every day sitting through lectures for classes he has no care for at a university he doesn’t really want to be at. Every day he dreams about dropping out, moving to LA and making a go of it in entertainment. He knows full well the odds of that working in his favour are well below 1%, but he still really really wants to do it. He’s decided that it’s ok to work random jobs for the rest of his life so long as he gets to keep expressing himself in a creative way. It’s not that he doesn’t believe in God, it’s just that he doesn’t think about it ever. It just doesn’t matter to him.

On the other hand is Jonathan Tollestrup, member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. He’s a deeply religious person who can relate just about everything that happens to him to the gospel. He goes to BYU because he wants to get a degree that will allow him to get a 9-5 job so that one day he can provide for a family. He does this because he knows that’s what he’s supposed to do and its definitely what his parents want him to do. He knows that he’s about to turn 26, and if he’s not careful he might end up being that weird uncle that lives on his own forever. He looks constantly to the future, and he worries about if he’ll measure up to his potential. Religion is the absolute center of his life and even though sometimes the culture of the church frustrates him he loves being a part of it.

Together there is Jonny Tollestrup. He still identifies as a member of the Church, though he’d have to admit he doesn’t think about it as much as he ought to. He’s pretty sure he could make a gospel comparison for just about every situation but opts to make jokes instead usually. He does attend BYU but holy does he not like it. He knows what he wants to do with his life and he knows that there isn’t much room for him to work on it at school. It’s not like there’s a major in stand-up with minors in blogging. He’s there because he’s too afraid to take the plunge and really shoot his shot at his dreams. He doesn’t really want to drop everything and move to LA either though. He just wants to have more time to actually try out all the whacky ideas in his head, but he worries people won’t see it as an authentic expression but rather a desperate plea for attention.

He’s all too aware of his age. 26 isn’t old for most people, but for an unwed fellow in Utah is concerning to him.  also knows that being able to provide for a family is important to him because at some point he does want that. Not in the immediate future, but definitely at some point and if he’s going to do that he’s probably going to need a degree of some sort. He also realizes that he might be downloading his own insecurities onto a blog post at this very moment and that he should probably not be mentioning this stuff out loud. Too late. Later.

 

Catching Up

Sleep. Sleep. Sleep. Sleep. Sleep. Sleep. Sleep. Sleep. Sleep. Sleep. Sleep. Sleep. Sleep. Sleep.

It’s something we all gotta do pretty much every day. Some of us need more than it than others. For myself, I only really need 4-5 hours of sleep each night to keep my functioning at 100%. For the past couple of weeks, however, I’ve only been averaging maybe 2 1/2 hours a night. This has resulted in a slow decay of my ability to function like an ordinary human being that has only been staved off by pumping my body full of caffeine each and every day. Not exactly a healthy or sustainable way of life.

Let’s be clear about something though. I am the only person to blame for this predicament. No one ever forced me to stay awake into the wee hours of the morning, I opted into working a job that begins at 4:30 AM, I am the one at the register buying the Red Bull, and I’m the one that cracks the can open and puts that chemical concoction into my body. These were my decisions and I’ll own them. I’ve been 100% happy to sacrifice my sleep to maintain my current schedule.

It’s just that I’ve hit the brick wall so to say today.

Normally the way my Thursday schedule goes is that I get off work at 8 AM (I work 5 3 1/2 hour shifts each week.) go home and nap for a few hours waking up around 10:30 to 11. I don’t have classes until 3 PM so there’s plenty of time to take a nap, shower and get ready before heading to campus for the school day. I like to get to campus around noon and study in the library for a few hours before class, then once my class (there’s just the one on Thursday’s) is over I’ll grab some food on campus and decide to either go back to the library if there’s a pressing need or head on home for the evening to write a blog or maybe hang out with some people, I can be social you know!

This is not how today went. I have an alarm set to 4 am that either didn’t go off or I was so sleep deprived that my body just straight up ignored it. Cut then to me waking up at 4:28, exactly two minutes before my shift started. It’s physically impossible for me to get there in that time so I ended up being around 10 minutes late. That’s not a big deal, in all honesty, my boss is pretty cool about people being occasionally late, she manages some 15 of us student employees who come in at 4:30 she gets that time management isn’t any of our forte’s. Once I’m there work proceeds as normal, I stay 15 minutes late to make up for being late and to get a couple extra tasks done and then I’m heading home.

Once I get home I make a bee-line straight for my room to get my precious nap in. I’m so looking forward to this thing, so much so that I don’t even bother to switch to the shorts I normally sleep in, the joggers I wore to work will be just fine to sleep in.  My head hits the pillow and just like that the lights are out. When I regain consciousness I grab my phone and to my horror, it isn’t 11 AM like it normally is, it’s nearly 5pm. I’ve completely missed my class, (again this isn’t the biggest deal, lots of extra credit opportunity to make up for missing a lecture here and there) at this moment I come to the powerful realization I started this blog with.

I’ve hit a brick wall, whatever I’ve been doing these past couple of weeks can’t continue in the same manner. I’ve got to start getting to bed at a more reasonable hour, I’ve got to stop relying on caffeine to get me through the day, because if I continue down this path it’s gonna be more than the being a little tardy to work and missing a lecture every once and a while. If I allow myself to continue in this way this it the beginning of a great unravelling for my life. I’ve been down that road before and I refuse to walk it again.

So I’ve written this blog to mark this decision. I Jonathan James Tollestrup vow to get some damn sleep.  I also vow to stop ingesting the chemical concoctions known as energy drinks. I’ll hold on to my caffeinated pops for now, but they also ought to know that they’re in my crosshairs. If you see me awake at some ungodly hour during the weekdays or with a Red Bull in my hand. Reprimand me, harshly. That’s all, thanks for reading as always. Later.