Just Tying the Shoes on the Final Post

Dear MediocreNINjA,

You have been a beautiful experience in a time of much stress and change.  I’ve always toyed with the idea of starting a blog; you are the blog that made this dream a reality, a breeding ground for creativity and the birth of a writer.  You were an awe-inspiring experiment, a window through which I realized a deeply buried passion for words.

We began our forray into the space between the lines precariously; I was lost and stressed and so very alone.  You listened.  You gave me encouragement.  Then one day, you began to inspire me to write happy thought bubbles instead of rain clouds.  We began to dance and think outside of the boundaries.  We dreamed.  And when we realized we could make people smile, the purpose began to creep in through our toes.  The purpose that gave us a purpose.  The purpose to do good in the world.

What started as a dumping ground for problems soon became a playground of words and stories.  Everything I’ve ever written has been first draft; I have learned how to get the words out.  However, being exposed to a network of writers through WordPress and college, I’ve come to realize just how powerful and poetic crafted words can be.  There’s a bitter and exhausting satisfaction to sculpting words, attempting to force words together into a luxurious sculpture only to conclude that the pieces will never connect.  You throw the mess to the floor in agony, only to realize the clutter you attempted to amass upon a pedestal was really a masterpiece of beautiful destruction upon the floor.  It was in the disarray you found beauty, not in the perfection of an impossible sculpture.

MediocreNINjA, it’s been quite the ride.  Created in the shadow of insecurity and defeat, we have risen to new places we never thought we’d be in.  We’ve risen above the mediocrity.  It is time to retire the bonds of self-deprecating labels and tackle new giants, label-less and free and utterly, hopelessly human.  It is time to be ourselves and inspire others to do the same.

Reader, if you’ve ever liked or commented on any of these posts, I appreciate you more than you will ever know.  You saved my life.  A word, a sentence, an entire post… I never knew another living being would read these brain thoughts.  What a bizarre world.  It is painful to exist, to be heard and acknowledged, but what a glorious pain.

With this post I bid you all adieu.  It is time to retire MediocreNINjA and move on to a space where I am not masked, a place to flounder and struggle and create clouds from the slowly dying fires that used to consume a small girl with no hope.  MediocreNINjA will live on, but as a now-silent companion and reminder of what a beautiful experience a beginner’s writing can be.

Thank you for the ride.

-Winona

Men-Wearing-Skirts Rant

If you want my superficiality to be the driving force behind my future album purchases, KPOP, you need to change up your game.

SKIRTS, SKIRTS, AND MORE SKIRTS.  TOO MANY SKIRTS.

This is a Men-Wearing-Skirts Rant.

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When I first entered the realm of KPOP, I had a vague understanding that the predominant feature of most males in the industry was their femininity. Their “prettiness.” Their 꽃미남 je ne sais quois.  I was totally okay with that; being 14, most boys my age looked more like girls anyway.

My parents, however, questioned my peculiar taste in men.

Is that boy wearing makeup?  Is that even male?  Does that boy know how to boy?

DO YOU EVEN KNOW HOW TO MOM, MOM?

I understand their confusion. With infamous gender benders such as Nu’est’s Ren and SHINee’s Taemin, any untrained eye would question their preconceived notions of gender.  Even KPOP fans find themselves second-guessing the supposed sex of their beloved idols.

I forgot how to boy.

I forgot how to boy~

And with cross-dressing, fan service and guyliner, the men of KPOP are not doing much to further the case of their masculinity.

Google guyliner, for instance.

kpop and guyliner

The first related search-term is, no surprise, KPOP, followed by a drugged-up Zac Efron and very angry Russell Brand.

Russell Brand is not pleased.

Russell Brand is not pleased.

Honestly I have no qualms about the lack of masculinity in KPOP.  Besides the fact that I find fan service to be demeaning and unnecessary, I am surprisingly fine with the blurred gender lines.

I am not, however, fine with men wearing skirts.

NO. I CANNOT STRESS HOW NOT OKAY I AM WITH THIS NEW TREND.

Yes, I am all for gender equality.  Yes, I completely support self expression.  Artistic exploration, defining your individuality, freeing your balls, whatever.  Wear a skirt then.  However, you cannot force me to enjoy your foray into the artistic side of your soul where Madonna is your under-appreciated muse. I am a black-jeans-white-belt-v-neck sort of gal, and no outfit will ever turn me on more than that boy-next-door look.

Unfortunately, KPOP is the sort of place where attraction directly correlate with album sales. Your skirt, dear sir, is not attractive, and I no doubt that this will affect your album sales (given the superficiality upon which KPOP and its albums are often built).

I am not asking you to change your ways.  The fashion world is asking you to change your ways.  Don’t hate on the messenger.

Hate on the stylist.

 

 

Blurry Eyes Love Old Women

The day elderly women began rocking the Full House-era John Stamos quaff is the day I realized I could be accidentally bisexual.

I dare you to resist this.

I dare you to resist this.

As I  drove through the streets the other day using my superior 90/20 vision, a glorious (albeit blurry) image besought my irregularly-shaped eyeballs.  From across the street I beheld a gorgeous man, bedecked in flowing plaid khakis (always a classic) and a large polo shirt.  Even more striking than his classy swagger and timeless fashion-sense, however, was his magnificent head of flowing locks.  They were a gift from the heavens themselves; dark as sinful passion, luscious as candy lips, and fuller than an orchid’s bloom at midnight.  His hair was beyond anything I could have ever dared to imagine.

And at 5 yards away, “He” suddenly turned into “Her.”

At least 60-years-old, slightly hunched, bespeckled in Harry Potter rims and most definitely female.

Okay, in no way am I against freedom of choice.  Choose whatever hairstyles you desire; who doesn’t want to look like John Stamos?  However, keep in mind that certain people who SHOULD be wearing glasses do not do so (due to money issues, or laziness, or an attempt to rise against optic oppressors) and may experience around 2.7 seconds of intense attraction to your finely crafted quaff.  This could possibly lead to a permanent loss of sexual identity and/or a socially questionable relationship involving an androgynous grandmother and a confused minor.

Once you realize just how similar attractive men and bouffant-rocking women appear, you begin to notice other striking parallels.  Both enjoy food; both naturally breathe air; both blink and cough and sneeze.  Many members of the young male species and elderly women may enjoy partaking in Froot Loops or watching Breaking Bad or avoiding beaches during Shark Week or sharing the commonality of sharing nothing in common.

It’s creepy.  It’s weird.  It’s alarming.

And it’s all preventable with Lasik surgery.  Santa save me now before I accidentally marry Eugenia and end up with step-children 20 years my senior.

Hideous and Lovely (But Mostly Hideous)

You are all gorgeous,” says the Hollister-wearing duckface with a #SWAG cap.

“No you’re not,” says me.

There is an illness among us.  A rampant virus devastating the web, specifically targeting social networking sites and the blogosphere.  It creeps in silently, hidden among your daily readings and mindless scrolling, just aching to slide in through your eyes and into your helpless brain.  Despite it’s wide-spread influence and the travesty it wreaks, it is nearly undetectable.  But it is present.  And it is waiting.  And it is deadly.

This illness has a name.  A phrase that resonates from within the memory bank, a universal phrase you can never quite place.

“Everyone is Beautiful.”

If you have somehow managed to avoid these poisonous posts filled with ignorant rallying, consider yourself lucky.  These poorly-worded rants are often naive, dense, and grammatically-suicidal, if not outright stupid.  And they usually go something like this:

Hey you.  Yeah you.  That ugly face that you see in the mirror?  That’s not your face.  You’re actually beautiful.  Just like everyone else.  We’re all beautiful.  You can trust me because I’m ACTUALLY beautiful.  The Jimmy Choos that I’m wearing prove it.

I understand that the writers of these posts mostly have good intentions, such as stroking your offensively low self-esteem or trying to appear saintly or attempting to get internet famous.  But they’re going about it the wrong way.  They’re lying.

And liars never win and quitters never win and pants on fire or however that saying goes.

I am here to tell you the truth, a truth that will give you wings and set you free: YOU. ARE. UGLY.  And it is a great thing to be ugly.

Beauty is stifling; if you have ever thought yourself to be attractive, you know what I’m talking about.  There is pressure to be physically perfect, always dress fashionably, constantly radiate charisma and create an atmosphere of happiness and beauty 24/6 (beautiful people get a break every Tuesday).  You can’t make dinosaur noises or pretend to be a noodle or lay in a sandbox; you can’t even complain about your insecurities because “You’re beautiful so you don’t know how it is to be insecure.”

Beauty is a prison, and the day I discovered I was a hideous human being was the day I was set free.  Ugliness is freedom.  Ugliness is what the Constitution is all about.

Sure beauty has its perks.  For one, people tend to love you more.  And you get more things.  And life is generally easier.  And you get a lot of attention.  And you might even make a job out of it.  Actually, beauty is pretty much all perks.  However, it is also deadly.  People get so caught up in the shallow pool of vanity that they forget just how deep and complex we as human beings actually are.  Life is not just about looks and dieting and money and status.  It’s about letting go of the insecurities and inhibitions and spazzing to Barbie Girl.  It’s about learning and compassion and snowball fights and soup.  Its about everything, the good and the bad, and the beautiful.  In small doses.

Embracing your Ugly will make your soul soar.  Everyone has flaws, you may as well claim yours as the undisputed best.  So what if you’re a zit face?  Those pimples set you free!  Buck teeth?  More like Buck Liberty.  Too short?  Short enough to escape the oppressive clutches of beauty.  Too fat?  FAT AND FREE.

In a way we’re all ugly.  It just takes some longer than others to embrace it.

And if you’re one of those nay-sayers who is all “when we say beauty, we mean inner beauty and goodness and personality!!!”, I have a different word for that definition of yours.

And that word is “AWESOME.”

Don’t Pinch Me, I’m Making a Recipe

Just me

A tale of intrigue, recipes, and a Weekly Writing Challenge.

The room was dark.  Amidst the hodgepodge of grainy unused shelves and dusty boxes, a sudden burst of light filled the otherwise vacant room.

The television.

The sound of static soothed the air, and the newborn image upon the television screen slowly changed from chaotic black and white scribbles to something with shape and form.  A sexy shape and form.  A woman.  She slowly tossed back her burgundy hair and gave the camera a dazzling smile.  Was this the late night adult channel?

The batter-covered whisk soon came into view, and it became apparent.  This was no X-rated flick (though the woman was most definitely worthy of such fame); this was the Cooking Channel.  Pots and pans littered the large kitchen counter, faintly covered in salt and pepper.  You could almost smell the cayenne pepper wading through the air, almost see it flying with a grace that only cayenne pepper can exude.  The bright fluorescent lights shone down on the scene and created a cheery and clean atmoshphere.

“Good Evening,” the woman crooned, seductively licking batter off the whisk, “and welcome to Cooking with Totally Hot Women Who are Great at Everything.”

As soon as the woman finished the absurdly long albeit highly accurate title of her cooking show, a scuffle was heard from above and a group of ninjas unexpectedly descended from the ceiling and attacked the defenseless woman with the ferocity of a tiger in a monsoon.  Swords were drawn, daggers thrown, nunchucks unsheathed; the distinct battle cry of the veteran slaughterers filled the air as they kicked with the flurry of one thousand badgers intoxicated with energy drinks and skittles.  The battle carried on for some time until a sudden plume of smoke burst forth and blanketed the surroundings with silence.  As the debris slowly settled, a form could be seen standing triumphantly, a large object in hand.

“The first ingredient of today’s recipe,” the woman announced breathlessly, “is the head of a fallen ninja.”  She deposited her foe’s cranium into a cast iron pot (the type her mother had always used) and sprinkled a dash of cinnamon to compliment the strength and determination the ninja head represented.

The crowd was silent.

The woman flashed her dazzling smile once again.

She began to sift through the cupboards, grabbing an array of ingredients to add to her mysterious recipe.  A gallon of coffee for brutal honesty; a squirt of lemon juice for humor; a teaspoon of vanilla representing innocence; and one cup of dark chocolate to keep it classy.

“The next ingredient in our recipe is-” the woman suddenly stopped, her well-crafted face turning as white as the piano keys she often played.  A mailman had arrived on set carrying two tiny packages, one in each hand.  He approached her cheerfully, his friendly smile and eager eyes a dangerous omen of the trouble that was soon to come.

Socializing.

“HELLO MA’AM!” the mailman cheerfully bellowed, his whitened teeth blinding the woman.  “I have two packages for you today, but you can only choose one.  Sorrryyyyyy.”  The woman rubbed her eyes and cautiously scanned the two packages, indecision tormenting her brain.  Finally deciding on the package in the left hand (she was left-handed after all), she quickly snatched the small box from the mailman’s sweaty hands and clumsily backed away from him.  He tipped his hat and was on his way, but not before depositing the other package into the cast iron pot where the woman’s concoction was slowly coming together.

“Well folks,” she started off shakily, plastering a smile on her face in hopes that nobody had noticed her weakness, “let’s open up this package and see what the surprise ingredient of the day is!”

Inside the box crouched a tiny bat, his wings wrapped around his fragile head in an effort to avoid the sunlight and intruding gaze of the crowd.  It was evident that he needed comfort and interaction, but he appeared too scared to reach out and ask for it.  Night-dwelling, lonesome, mysterious…the bat and the woman were a good comparison.  She sighed and gently lay the bat in the pot, stroking its battered ears.  A small chirp resounded from the unopened package next to the bat, but the woman didn’t dare open that box.  She feared birds, even though this one in particular was bright and cheerful and completely harmless.

She ignored the paradox of her recipe and continued on, the crowd attentive and tense.

“Next I will add a sloth’s toe for awkwardness, and finally-” she paused to deposit the hairy limb, “a dinosaur egg covered in salsa to represent the absurdly nonsensical side of me.”

The crowd gasped.  She had been using a recipe about herself?

Slowly a form rose from the pot, much like the rebirth of Voldemort in the 4th Harry Potter but less creepy.  More like a really hot swimsuit model emerging from a pool, if you think about it.  The form tossed back her cascading hair and smiled at the dumbstruck crowd, her satisfied expression highlighting her egotistical nature.  She was strong, and determined, and honest; she could be funny at times, but she was also a very classy individual.  Although she liked to think of herself as intelligent, she was often too innocent to understand things.  Somehow she possessed both introversion and an outgoing personality, much to her confusion.  But deep down she was gripped with fear; she was scared of people, and being in public, and forming relationships.  She was too stubborn to admit to her faults though, and that was the way she liked it.  Most of all, she was an individual.

“Hi, I am MediocreNinJa.  And I like to party.”

The crowd cheered.

Lets Get Productive!

How To Have a Productive Weekend When Work is Slow and Your Best Friend is in Canada (MEDIOCRENINjA EDITION):

  1. Purchase an extremely large diabetes-inducing three layer triple chocolate cake.  Pretend said cake is the newest tier on the Food Guide Pyramid.  Consume said cake at every meal.  And snack time.  And during commercials.  And TV shows.  And bathroom breaks.
  2. Eat 3 frozen dinners to counterbalance the positive benefits of uncontrollable energy and shakiness the cake will induce.  You don’t want your friends thinking you’re TOO healthy.  They’ll be intimidated.
    NOTE: Make sure you heat the frozen dinners at 1 in the morning in the loudest possible microwave.
  3. Lovingly raise a brood of singing monsters to level 10 on your android phone, then proceed to throw phone into volcano and curse the skies when your account gets deleted.
  4. Enter an old lady’s house disguised as a plumber’s assistant.  Do everything in your power to procure a compliment on how you’re such a pretty plumber.
  5. Realize this is a backhanded compliment.
  6. Proceed to create old lady voodoo doll.
  7. Sneak into your neighbors’ backyard and take pictures of their cats.
    The more frightened they look, the better you're doing it.

    The more frightened they look, the better you’re doing it.

     

  8. Occupy your mind with an illogical crush on a kid you met three weeks a go.  Make sure to have had zero thoughts about said boy until exactly 3 weeks have passed.
  9. Scratch head in confusion and tell yourself you need to get out more.
  10. Finally decide to get out and head over to Office Max wearing jogging shorts.  Proceed to attract stalker employees for the duration of your stay.  Count this as a compliment.
    NOTE: wear sweat-stained shirt for optimal effect.
  11. Finally, REPEAT STEPS AS NECESSARY.  Throw in dinosaurs and chick flicks for an added bonus.

Recreating Jared Leto

I have had a little too much free time lately.  Work is slow, my “BESTEST FRIEND EVER WHO I COULDN’T LIVE WITHOUT” is in Canada and unable to reply to text messages, and my martial arts dojo is closed for the week due to a ninja infestation.  I could be doing something productive like working out or learning a new language or weaving baskets, but that’s not how my short attention span likes it.

Instead, Paint.

It all started with trying to find a picture of black hair with red lowlights (because I need bombshell hair for my totally bombshell lifestyle of playing Sims and throwing chips at my dogs).  However, no suitable pictures were found so my brain was all “Hey, how about we just draw a sexy version of you and force the stylist to believe its a good idea to dye hair based off a drawing?”

So that’s how this picture happened:

Hair like this should be total husband bait.

Hair like this should be total husband bait.

I’m actually pretty proud of this.  It’s a good first attempt at a portrait.  So good in fact that I decided to recreate a portrait of someone famous.  Someone whose hotness could match the sexiness of my own portrait.

Jared Leto was the obvious choice.

The original picture:

Gimme dat with nachos any day of the week.

Gimme dat with nachos any day of the week.

The recreation:

If this isn't almost an exact replica, I don't know what is.

If this isn’t almost an exact replica, I don’t know what is.

Besides the fact that I have no idea how to blend the background colors, I think it’s pretty obvious that this is just as sexy as the original picture, if not more.  Just look at dat 4 o’clock shadow.  And smoldering gaze.  And totally buff arms.  If you look really closely, you’ll see that my version of Jared Leto possesses no visible neck.  And what’s sexier than an angst-ridden head connected directly to the torso?

That’s right, nothing.

After working diligently upon Leto’s quaff for a couple hours, I decided to move on to greater projects.

Like a tyrannosaurus rex fangirling over Bruce Willis riding a skateboard.

Even extinct reptilians can't resist John McClayne.

Even extinct reptilians can’t resist that beautiful bald head.

Or a very accurate recreation of me when I was 12.

I was a happy child;

What a looker.

By the time I finished the last carefully-measured stroke of hair upon my cartoon self’s prepubescent head, my arm had seized and it was time to call it quits.  I gently put aside the mouse and leaned back, triumphant.  This morning I had been but a girl; now I was a Painter.  An emotional T-Rex and Jared Leto had led me to my true calling.  The calling I had been desperately searching for my entire life.

Who am I?

I am an artist.