Thursday, May 19, 2011

This is too long to tweet so I'm posting it here.

Pretend that you have a dog.  Let's say your sweet, kind grandma gave it to you because she is the most wonderful grandma ever.  Your dog is the best dog in the world: it loves you, comforts you when you're sad, entertains you, and is your best friend.  Luckily for you, this dog will also live forever and will never abandon you and will only get better with age as you create fond memories together.

Now pretend that one day you come home from work to find that your grandma has taken your dog away. Also, it turns out the dog was a robot that never loved you and spent its entire time with you collecting data about you so that your grandma could market stupid toys that you and your friends would buy and its made her incredibly rich and not only is your dog gone, but grandma also left a really loud, really smelly, really stupid flock of squawking parrots in your living room along with a note informing you that she is, in fact, the best grandma ever, a genius among matriarchs, THE UNDISPUTED GRANDMOTHER OF THE CENTURY.  And you try so desperately to ignore the dumb birds while you look at pictures of adventures with your old dog but you can't and what does it matter anyway because all your memories are ruined and your family and friends try to tell you that it's okay but it isn't because ALL THIS TIME THE FORCE WAS MADE OF STUPID, TINY, IDIOTIC LIVING ORGANISMS THAT INHABITED YOUR BODY LIKE A BUNCH OF PSYCHIC, PARASITIC TAPEWORMS OR SOMETHING.

And that's why I hate Star Wars Episode 1: The Phantom Menace so much.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

I don't remember if I've told this story already but I had a lot of caffeine so here you go, internet.

I think I may have tweeted about this while it was happening but it's a story that deserves documentation and probably a few pictures but I lost my camera in Colorado while it was happening and so now I don't have a picture of the clown man to prove anything.  I actually think the TSA stole my camera as evidence and then when they figured out that I'm not actually a terrorist, they were too embarrassed to give it back.  TSA, I forgive you, but I really need my camera back because I spent forever hours becoming a photography wizard and by "wizard" I mean "person who is able to turn her camera on and off without causing irreparable damage" so YEAH, TSA.  If you send it back, we'll call it good and I won't sue you.  I probably won't sue you anyway, though.  This post is not going to get any more coherent than this, guys.

My Airport Adventure: A Tale of Loss, Achieving my Dreams, and Strange Men Dressed as Clowns in Terminal A (Part One)
By Megan Prietzel

"I wish I could go to Colorado and see BYU in the NCAA tournament," I said.
"We should just go," replied Tavia.
"Okay."

Shortly thereafter, Tavia called her father.  I called my mother.  After a series of phone calls involving massive amounts of whining and promises to be responsible and PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE's, Tavia and I headed off to Colorado to support and cheer on our beloved BYU men's basketball team.

We left after our classes and headed to the airport.  I was tingling with excitement and also inexplicable terror because airplanes are incredible.  So incredible that I still refuse to believe that they are real.  How can that much metal fly through the air like that?  IT CAN'T, I TELL YOU.  Except it does.  THUS THE TERROR.  Anyway, we arrived at the airport parking lot.  Rain poured outside the car.  Neither one of us wanted to leave the warm, enveloping comfort of the car's butt warmers, but we had a higher calling that day.  We HAD to get to Colorado.  And I vowed to be an adult that day!  It would be my first airplane ride ever without my mommy.  EVER.  Tavia doubted that I had the capability to act like a functioning member of society for an entire airport visit, but I was going to prove her wrong.  OH BOY, WAS I.

We left the car and lugged our two carry-on bags through puddles and into a little shack to await the airport shuttle.  A very athletic looking woman joined us.  At the time I was not ashamed because I visited the gym regularly.  I am now ashamed.  Anyway.  The shuttle arrived and Tavia and I boarded, ready for our adventure.  I sat on that crowded, damp bus with a grin on my face and I suppressed every urge to start singing "WE WE WE SO EXCITED!  WE SO EXCITED!" because I was a freaking adult, everybody, complete with a real suitcase and a living person who was not my mom.  It was to be the dawn of a new age.

We entered the airport.  I could feel the magic of modern transportation at work around me, a magic that I was about to take part in.  Unfortunately, I have this problem. 

I am not the kind of person who copes well with new and unusual situations.  Especially situations where something is expected of me, say like in a long line of rushing people in which I am expected to take off my shoes and fill a tub with all of my things as quickly as possible.  Tavia is one of those capable people.  She orders pizza on the phone because she doesn't mind talking to a person and telling him or her that she wants pepperoni.  Her face doesn't burn bright red and her palms don't sweat and she doesn't start mumbling awkward sentences that sounded better in her head.  That is why I desperately needed her.

We got in the airport security line thing.  Tavia calmly removed her shoes and placed them in a plastic tub, along with her jacket and belt.  She took a second tub and put her phone and laptop inside.  Then she set them both on a conveyor belt with ease, followed by her suitcase.  Meanwhile, my brain was going insane for no particular reason.

I am going to have to take off my shoes.  What if I forget how to do that?  What if I accidentally take off my pants instead?  I WILL LOOK LIKE SUCH AN IDIOT.  Oh my gosh.  The people behind me are probably wondering why I don't have a plastic tub.  Okay, so I um, grab this tub thing and um...put my shoes in it?  Is that right?  PANTS?  TAVIA SHOULD I PUT MY PANTS IN IT?  NO! No, Megan, get it together.  Okay now set the tub on the movey-belty thing.  WTFFF I need a SECOND TUB??  Oh dear heaven above.  Okay uh...for my laptop?  But my laptop is in my backpack...no no it's cool.  I can do this.  Man, this zipper is really difficult to open when my palms are this sweaty.  IS EVERYONE LOOKING AT ME?  Everyone is looking at me. I can't handle this pressure.  IF I DO NOT GET THIS BACKPACK OPEN EVERYONE WILL DIE.  Oh, I am truly blessed, it opened and I didn't drop my laptop.  Okay, well now I just want everyone to stop looking at me.  I can tell they're looking at me, even though they appear to be paying no attention at all. I'm gonna go ahead and toss the rest of my stuff in there as quickly as possible.  And now it's all falling out of the tub.  Um.  I'll just put my backpack on top...Yeah that works.  OH MY now I have to lift my suitcase and put it on the conveyor thing??  IS MY FOREHEAD SWEATING THAT MUCH, OR AM I IMAGINING THIS??  I bet the security guy thinks I'm a terrorist because I'm sweating so much.  I'm not, security guy.  I'm just incapable of performing simple tasks with an audience.  Oh no.  I can't lift this suitcase.  I CAN'T DO IT I CAN'T DO IT I CA-oh hey, I did it.  Kind of crooked...oh now it's stuck inside the scanning machine.  I AM SUCH AN EMBARRASSMENT TO MY RACE.

Needless to say, my inner monologue did not help my awkward fear when, after successfully passing through the metal detector like a champ, the security man stopped me because he found something suspicious in his magical x-ray machine. 

I knew it.  He thinks I'm a terrorist.  Or a drug dealer!  I'm not though!  ...Right?  AM I?  DID I BECOME A DRUG DEALER AND FORGET ABOUT IT?  Just arrest me now, security man, I'll admit to anything.  YES, IT'S MY COCAINE.  AND MY GUN.  ALSO MY PANTS, I THOUGHT I WAS SUPPOSED TO REMOVE THEM.

As it turned out I was not a drug dealer and actually the woman behind me had too much lotion in her carry on but the security man thought it was my bag and so I suffered a small heart attack.  

After my face faded from bright red to its usual pasty white, Tavia and I decided to get something to eat.  I felt as though Burger King was the only food I could want, mainly because we passed it on the way to the airport and I was starving and unable to actually consider my dining options.  So Tavia and I sat at a table and waited for our food after ordering.  Because I was convinced that my hunger was insatiable, I ordered the largest sized combo, which meant a beverage the approximate size and shape of my head.  I filled it with Coke and headed over to sit with Tavia.  I then promptly dropped the bucket of Coke right next to my chair and also kind of on my chair.  Tavia stared at me for a moment before sighing and admitting that she should have known this would happen, and yeah, she sort of should have because she lived with me and THIS WAS A NORMAL OCCURRENCE. 

I walked over to a nice little old lady who was mopping the floor and asked her to please clean up my mess.  Just then my food was ready.  Tavia and I sat and ate our fries and chicken nuggets as a sweet, elderly woman quietly mopped the floor around my feet.  It was easily one of the most terrible moments of my life.  I'll give you a moment to picture this.  Keep in mind that all the surrounding tables were occupied by people who were staring and felt just as awkward as I did.  Also keep in mind that I had tried to mop up the Coke with three forests' worth of napkins which did almost nothing but make a soggy brown mess that dripped all the way to the trash can and covered me in sticky soda.  Ready?  Got the horrible mental image?  Good.  Now hold it there for ten minutes and try to enjoy your chicken nuggets.  YOU CAN'T.

After that disaster, Tavia decided it would be best just to go sit in our terminal and wait for the plane to board.  As we sat in the terminal we saw a strange man.  He had gone through airport security near us and we were mildly amused to see him n our terminal.  He wore bright red overalls.  His hair was a huge tangle of orange-brown curls.  His shoes were distinctly clown-like.  He carried an assortment of entertainments: bowling pins, rubber balls, batons, and the like.  While we watched, he practiced juggling his bowling pins and unfortunately, he was not very good at it.  He also got very angry with himself every time he dropped a bowling pin and I couldn't help but sympathize.  I watched the clown man for half an hour before the effect of my bucket of Coke kicked in and I left to use the bathroom.  As I walked back, I passed clown man.

"Hey there, pretty girl!" he said brightly.
"Oh, um, hi," I stammered back, surprised to be addressed.
"You dropped something back there"
I turned and looked at the ground, mentally kicking myself for losing my pants or something.  I didn't see anything.  Confused, I asked, "Um, what did I drop?"
"You dropped," here he paused and smiled coyly, "your smile."
"Ah, my smile.  Yes.  Ah.  I'll just...pick it up..and...wear...it..." My mumbling degenerated quickly.  Clown man appeared to be about 20.  Clown man appeared to be talking to me.  CLOWN MAN APPEARED TO BE WINKING AT ME.  I desperately wished that I had anything, anything at all to say about my dropped smile.  Instead, I shuffled awkwardly away, intensely aware of the fact that he was still looking at me. 

He started juggling rubber balls.  I started wondering what the appropriate reaction to this situation would be.  Rebecca Black would not get out of my head.

The epic tale will continue in PART TWO, in which the TSA decided that my ponytail was a threat to national security.

Friday, May 13, 2011

A hat tip to Allie Brosh. UPDATED.

Hyperbole and a Half happens to be one of my favorite blogs ever.  It (along with The Oatmeal, XKCD, Natalie Dee and a few other illustrated blogs) is one of my biggest inspirations when it comes to my own posts and illustrations.  I feel it's important to give credit where credit is due. A lot of people have noticed that I have a similar writing style and illustration style to a few other bloggers.  I generally take this as a huuuuge compliment, because that means that someone, somewhere thinks that I have a vestige of talent.  And that makes me feel all accomplished inside.

One of my favorite drawings ever done by Allie Brosh is this one:

This is totes too awesome for words.  
Why?  Because that was ME as a child.  And it kind of still is, let's be honest.  the expression, the dress, THE DINOSAUR TOY.  When I first saw this picture I died of laughter.  And so, as my first hat tip illustration (probably in a series of them to several AWESOME bloggers and illustrators) I give you my Hyperbole and a half-ed drawing of myself:
I imagine that this would be me if I were drawn by Allie Brosh.  Probably.  The pink unicorn probably would have been a whole lot better if she'd done it.  But the purple one isn't too bad, eh?  This drawing was featured in my last article on Sparknotes.com. It was done on paint.net, and it took me forever plus infinity to adequately capture the style, so I'll be going back to bean people for now.  ANYWAY, if you haven't read Hyperbole and a Half, you SERIOUSLY have to.  It will change your life.  Most likely.

Allie Brosh, I salute you.

Updated:
First of all, this post was SUPPOSED to go up at the same time as the SL article, but Blogger was experiencing technical difficulties and was down for maintenance.  So I only just now get to respond to the hatred!  YAAAAY!

So apparently I'm a total idiot and I forgot to add in my article that the above drawing is homage to Allie Brosh.  I hadn't really thoroughly read the article once it was posted and just did now as I was linking to it for this post.  LOOKS LIKE I HAVE SOME SERIOUS HATRED GOING ON.  Which is justified, since CLEARLY that was a Hyperbole and a Half inspired drawing that I created.  Here's some clarification for anyone who is angry about my own illustration styles versus any other blogger:

 The above illustration uses a style I call "bean people" in my head, because they look like beans and they're incredibly easy to draw.  This is my general go to style.  I like the dots for eyes and the coloring outside of the lines because I think it's cute.  Occasionally I'll do something with their eyes if I want to give them a stronger expression.  Other examples of illustration styles I sometimes use include:




These are just a few examples.  As you can see, I don't have a really set style of illustration.  All of them are influenced by other people, but that's kind of a given.  Everyone is influenced, and I definitely have wayyy more than just one muse.  When I'm drawing, I'm not thinking about Allie Brosh's drawings or anyone else's.  The unicorn toy drawing WAS actually mean as a salute to Allie, but CLEARLY that didn't turn out too well.  So we'll see if hat tip drawings continue.

THE POINT OF THIS IS TO EXPLAIN THAT I'M NOT A CHEATING COPY CAT.  Credit where credit is due.

KTHX.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

I'm going to try to make this way more exciting than it actually is.

Next week (probably) I will start blogging THE HOST.  BY STEPHENIE MEYER.  AREYOUASECSTATICASIAM?!?!  Probably not.  Now a few things:

1. I chose to blog The Host for several reasons.  First, it got the most votes on the poll I put up a while back.  Second, there's a lot of discussion material there.  Third, there is no sequel so if I find that I absolutely hate blogging books, I don't have to actually blog a book ever again.

2.  I have read this book before.  But it was back when I was in the 14-15 age range and still thought Edward was the hottest thing to happen to the world.  So the new perspective should be...enlightening.

3.  I'm not going to rip it apart just because Stephenie Meyer wrote it.  I know that a lot of you guys LOVE to see the Twilight series trashed, and to some extent so do I, but if I recall correctly I actually liked The Host better than the vampire book stuff.  Then again, that's not saying much, because I wore a lot of Abercrombie when I was reading both books and I think the fumes messed with my brain.  That would account for all of the blue eyeshadow that I used to wear.  ANYWAY the point is that I'll give this book a chance.

4. If this is a terrible idea, TOO BAD SUCKAS!  Hahahahahahaha.  I'm hilarious!  Right?  Right, guys?

5. If you'd like to read along, I'll probably do a chapter a week, unless I feel like doing more, but I'll let you guys know if I do an extra via TWITTER or FACEBOOK.  Quick reminder, if you're about to go add me on Facebook, make sure to add the Megan Prietzel with the funny cartoon as a profile picture.  THANKS.

6. Is my favorite number.

7. I won't be making predictions, since I already know what's going to happen.  Vaguely.  Instead, I'll follow in the footsteps of the illustrious Dan Bergstein and do some deleted scenes.  Probably.  Unless I decide to do something else.  Which I most likely wont.  If you have any ideas or suggestions, leave 'em in the comments or shoot me an email at megan.squared@hotmail.com. 

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Apparently I am a crazy person.

Those of you who follow me on Twitter know that I'm kind of an idiot who says things like, "I'm not saying you're a zombie.  I'm implying it.  There's a difference." and "I ate like twenty gummy bear vitamins.  Am I going to die?"  and "I had a dream that I was mauled by a baby-hating bear last night. My dream reaction: I have to tweet this if I don't die."  I am clearly not meant for Twitter but since no one has kicked me off yet I assume I'm still in the clear.  Anyway, I found this website that I guess analyzes your old tweets and then tells you what your next tweets will be.  Probably.  It is startlingly accurate, so far:


"Help! He's repressing me! Did you blink too insane even for attack and loathing for survival are?"

"Funny thing about the challenge. Never look up a cerebrospinal fluid leak. Thing I am not: microwave safe."

"Found two more live-able."

"I'm pretty sure I want this job?"

"Actually thus far I am not a flavor of detergent instead of curls."

"Dumb tacks. Officially have a unicorn. Yes! This shopping cart's wheels won't turn right. Me."

"All I ate like a guy in marshmallow. You didn't deserve that."

"The Fellowship of ice cream called Sparkle. I karate chopped that paper."

"Officially have a passion for you to sit down."

"Thing I dropped last night. Oh. Pretend that I want to college, kids."

"I'm still awake. Lolz, I'm implying it. Silence. Don't go to your lap murderer? "

"Sleep placebo: I'll just float around behind you, weeping until you can write or draw."

 "Am now throwing a purple horse named Sweetbottom to share stories about"

"Just stole a guy in the tree. I assure you, I ate like to get somewhat interesting."

And my personal favorites:

"....what is a bunch of curls. It'll fall out to own me. The Sand People are the floor."

"Whoever found my head hurts sooo bad."

"Jimmer, you are the first ten minutes."

"The bottom of my skill set consists of detergent instead of the existence of the Ring."

"Just stole a book shaped present turned out of detergent instead of those free paint cards from WalMart."

"I haven't embraced the wise, kids: DO YOUR HOMEWORK ON TIME."

"1: Why do you want to be alive."

"I'm busily asserting my air."

"Apparently Vegas was a zombie apocalypse. Love this job?"

 "I think I'm sorry, Twitter."


 And the winner is:

"I'm a baby-hating bear vitamin." 


I think the moral of this story is that I should develop real interests.  Either that, or everyone should be following me on Twitter.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Scratch that. I am actually dying.

I am growing something.  Inside of me.  No, it is not a fetus.  It's more like a viral plague.  There is a probably unknown strain of some sort of soul-killing virus replicating inside of me and slowly sucking the life out of my body.  I'm not sure what it wants.  It's unclear whether it just intends to obstruct the air flow in my nose forever or whether its primary goal is to make me so woozy that I fall over and knock my head on the ground, possibly killing myself.  If the latter is the case, the virus really could just wait for nature to take its course.  I'm not particularly graceful, virus.  Just trying to help you out here.

Either way, I'm awake because I can't breathe and if I can't breathe I can't sleep and this all is much less serious than I'm making it sound.  Unless I really do die.  If I die, it's much more serious than I'm making it out to be.  Anyway, WANNA HEAR A STORY??

One day there was this really incredibly attractive girl named me.  I had to move all of my THINGS and STUFF and ITEMS from my college dorm to my room back at home because the university I was attending generally frowns upon people leaving piles and piles of junk in random rooms.  When I first moved into my dorm, I had a very reasonable amount of things.

Over time this amount grew.  I would come home from the store with some lotion, goldfish, decorative foam fingers.   Bags of useless stuff soon began piling under my bed.  I started to get slightly uncomfortable.  I was going to have to take this all back home, after all.  But I dismissed these thoughts and went out to buy more things.


In college there are these things called "dining plans" that give you free food.  Free food!  FREE FOOD!  And it's the good kind of food!  From vending machines and snack things and ice cream!  FREE FOOD...that I pay for every month as part of my rent, but STILL IT'S BASICALLY FREE!  I started to come home from class every day laden with food.  When it came time to move, for some reason I decided that the only thing I could possibly do with all of my food was pack it.  Along with all my other stuff.  Buy NEW FOOD?  NO!  IT WAS FREE FOOD!  So I packed my free food.  And my other things.  I began packing.  Things were going...okay.

I realized that I was going to need more boxes.  My roommate, meanwhile, had already packed and busily cleaned her half of the room like a responsible tornado of efficiency.  Oh, how I envied her ability to perform menial tasks without suffering from a total meltdown.  Nevertheless, I was determined to pack up all of my stuff all by myself.

Soon, I was in the zone.  A packing typhoon, I was a force to be reckoned with.  My arms were a blur, tossing items in boxes with reckless abandon.  Where my roommate was a well-oiled machine, stowing objects with precision, I was a flailing toddler throwing a temper tantrum. I flew across the room, cleaning walls and taping boxes and tearing down posters without any rhyme or reason.  I shoved my crap into every corner of every box almost angrily.  Actually, I was angry.  Why did I have so many things???  What was I doing shoving three bags of potato chips into a box of clothes???  WHY COULD I NOT GET "FRIDAY" OUT OF MY HEAD??!!  It wasn't long before the impossible became a glorious reality: all of my stuff was packed.



It was a lot less fulfilling than I thought it would be.

Unpacking was a miracle the likes of which have not been seen since biblical times.

The moral of the story: when you get a Happy Meal at McDonald's, throw away the toy instead of saving it and inexplicably bringing it and every other piece of useless junk that you've accumulated over the months with you when you move.