“These people were looking at us like we had dropped in from another planet”

This kind of does remind me though of another time my sister and I were in the Dominican Republic and we were visiting a friend of hers from college there. And she had planned a day trip for us on a boat to you know - you take this boat out you go to this island, you stay there for a while and then you know, then you come back and it was I don't know if her friend knew exactly what the situation was or if she did and assumed that we would too but my sister and I were completely not prepared for what this trip actually was. It was totally a party trip.Like it was totally you drink from the moment that you get on this boat - probably even before you get on the boat. All through the boat, I mean people were just going crazy. I mean everybody was in their string bikinis jumping off the boat. I mean getting to the beach and you know, just totally, you know, totally a beach party trip. Totally not my sister and my scene at all, and neither one of us had our bathing suits which again, I guess you think okay, you're going on a boat and you're going to a beach on an island, yep we probably should have assumed that we needed our bathing suits. But we didn't, we're not super water people like we just we didn't we didn't even think. So we're - I'm, I was there - I think I even had like capris on I didn't even have like a skirt or shorts or anything. I mean, I think I had like sort of capris that definitely like covered my knee. I think they were black and then like just a t-shirt no tank top. No, I mean really again and I think everybody was kind of looking at the two of us like what is going on and my sister always wears like any time that she knows she's gonna be out in the sun - which again she kind of thought she was gonna be out in the sun being on a boat or at the beach she always wears long sleeves. And oftentimes long pants too with UV protective, um clothing because she burns so easily. So I'm pretty sure she had on like her full UV, you…

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“…boys are not taught, “Don’t attack girls.”

There were many times where I would have a late class, be studying in the library, be doing things in the lab late at night. And you know when school's in session, it's the winter so it gets dark really early. You know, it could be seven, eight o'clock. It's not that late, but it's very dark. And just because Detroit has the reputation that it does, my mom always felt better if I had a male friend who was walking with me to my parking structure or to and from buildings. And what's odd to me is that I spent 10 years in martial arts and have two high degree black belts. So I have the ability to physically defend myself, but I also have the ability, the wherewithal to know who to call. Like campus security, the police department, or the you know the police. I know what to do if I feel unsafe, so the fact that I was specifically told to have a male with me, is also a double standard. Because again, it supports the notion that a woman is a dainty flower that needs to be protected. Rather than teaching people not to attack other people. If that makes sense. So, I think that that would be my experience with double standards. It's a lot of that, and it's very ingrained in conversation, very like a normal thing for a girl to grow up hearing. You know, "Don't dress this way because you're going to attract attention or attract problems," and so on. Rather like we're told that rather than hearing boys be taught, "They're just wearing clothes. They're not quote, 'Asking for it'." If that makes sense, boys are not taught, "Don't attack girls." Rather girls are taught "Don't do this because boys will be boys and attack you if you do." And I have a problem with that.

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“But that was the time, I almost passed out.”

So I've never eaten food that's made me sweat because I'm not one of those people that chases painful foods. And I don't understand why people do that. Sorry, if something was advertised to me that way then I would avoid that thing. I like spicy food, but not hot spicy. Like I don't need my food to be painful. I have almost passed out from the heat though. Once in high school, my friend wanted to surprise her parents by creating this little patio in their backyard. And so we got all the supplies from Lowe's, like all the brick thingys and then sand. And I don't remember what else but like it was super super hot and like so like unloading these like, I think they're like 50-pound bags of sand. And loading them in another truck and then unloading them at her house and then the same with the bricks and everything was just like super intense. And I got really dizzy and almost threw up and and then like almost passed out and I was like, "Whoa! Maybe you should take a break." This is not a dramatic story. But that was the time, I almost passed out.

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“I came back into the apartment… And it just smelled so much like gas.”
Four burning burners with blue flames on the gas stove

“I came back into the apartment… And it just smelled so much like gas.”

I did live in a house with a gas leak. Um it was during the snowpocalypse. I can't remember what year that was. Um sometime after 2016, maybe, um but short, long and short of it was, I was snowed in for several days, so I hadn't left the apartment, and that was super unusual for me. I was really active, even on days I wasn't going to class or working, um I would be out and about. And so finally there was like — and this was like, the snowpocalypse where nothing was open, um, it was really kind of hazardous to be out. There weren't even any um pathways clear on the roads. And so, like I said, I was hunkered down, and then eventually, you know, they plowed, and I was able to go for a walk, and I came back into the apartment after having been closed in there for so many days, um and it just smelled so much like gas. Um it was immediately apparent to me, but because I had been in the house, um, I think the pilot — the what ended up being the issue was the pilot light had gone out on my stove, my gas stove, and so it was just like slowly leaking gas into the apartment, um but I don't think I'd had food to cook because everything was closed. Um and so, yeah, I was also slowly being poisoned, and um I called — I forget if it was like the fire department or I called somebody — um and I texted my neighbors and said, like, “Please do not, you know, use an open flame right now. There's this issue," and when the person came and helped me get everything sorted out, um ‘cause I don't know that I knew it was a pilot light that was out. Um, I'd never had a gas stove before, um but when the person came to help me out they were like, “Oh, I recognize this apartment," like "this has happened before,” um and so then I called my landlord just to see if there was a way to maybe get a new stove, um ‘cause again, without having owned a gas stove before, I wasn't sure if that was something that happened often, if it was an issue um with the stove itself. But anyway, uh, kind…

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“And I couldn’t remember the last time someone had said they’d missed me.”
Cup of coffee with book on table in rain day

“And I couldn’t remember the last time someone had said they’d missed me.”

That’s funny. Yeah, I actually wrote in my journal in spring two thousand nineteen in April that a certain person had been my sunshine on a rainy day, and that person was actually a professor of mine and she has consistently been this way for me, so it's not an isolated incident. But one of the things I loved about going to a smaller school is that you get to know your professors quite personally sometimes, and that was the case here. And so, this professor was, um, she was away at a conference for a week or so, actually in Europe, and then she came back, and I was sitting at this little study table, um, doing philosophy homework, I think I was reading Descartes, and I felt like this touch on my shoulder, and I turn around, and there she was. She still had her hand on my purple raincoat, and she says, “Oh, I missed you last week.” And I couldn't remember the last time someone had said they'd missed me, probably except my grandma. I don't think I'd ever really been missed before in my life. And that touched my whole day. It was raining outside and I was struggling because the end of the school year was coming and I didn't want to move back home for the summer. And that made my whole day. When I went back to my dorm room, it made me cry, actually, as I was writing it down in my journal. And she, like I said, we've maintained a close friendship even after I was in her class, and it's been that way. So many times I've stopped by and she’s had, like, the perfect advice for me, or sometimes she tells me just to open up my backpack because she has chocolates for me, that's happened before too. And keeping in touch during a pandemic over email, that really kept me going a lot of times. I might receive a message I wasn't expecting, and it would be one of the hardest days or something, and you, it just gives you strength to move forward and not only watch television all day, which was, of course, a temptation a lot of people faced.

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“It just kind of made everything a little bit more special.”
Palm trees and double rainbow

“It just kind of made everything a little bit more special.”

I was in a wedding, in Hawai'i. One of my my best friends from university got married in Honolulu, and we had finished the ceremony and were taking pictures of the wedding party. I don’t remember it actually raining on us while we were taking the photos, but we were using the Pacific Ocean as our background, and in came this um this little rain shower, uh which happens pretty often in, in that type of climate. And had this really beautiful rainbow that appeared um kind of behind us in in all of the pictures, so it was kind of really nice, um a really nice addition to the pictures, and I know I know people always talk about, you know, rain on wedding days, and whether or not that’s good luck or bad luck or what it is, but I I I remember thinking, if we hadn’t had — if there hadn’t been rain somewhere that day that we wouldn’t have had that rainbow in those great um those great shots that we got with with the rainbow behind us. It just kind of made everything a little bit more special, and it was it was just kind of cool.

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“I tripled my value there for the gift.”
A macro shot of a portion of a state lottery scratch game ticket.

“I tripled my value there for the gift.”

(Note: Some language has been edited out of the transcript that is not edited out in the audio.) I did, however, get really lucky one time. So, we do White Elephant for my family um for Christmas, instead of like getting everybody gifts ‘cause it’s easier. Um, and so for White Elephant, my gift somehow that I got was a bunch of lottery tickets, and — f***, what else was it? — something else, but I can’t remember. Key point — oh wait I think it was literally just lottery tickets. So the, I wanna say the price was twenty-five to thirty dollars, I think, so I got like thirty dollars worth of lottery tickets, and I scratched them all off, somehow ended up with like ninety-six bucks. My uncle was eating his words, ‘cause half of them were like the dollar, five dollar ones, so that’s what made it even better. Um, so yeah, I like tripled I tripled my uh uh value there for the gift. So that was really my um little bit of luck on that, that’s my gold pot at the end of the rainbow for that one. That will never, I can almost guarantee you with my luck though, that will never happen to me again. And I don’t wanna jinx anything, but, with my luck? That’s never happening again.

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“I put it in our basketball team’s shared folder.”
Cloud computing imagery.

“I put it in our basketball team’s shared folder.”

So I have, I have an older sibling, and you know, siblings have the kind of relationship where you'll take pictures dressed in weird outfits, you know, making funny faces and send them to each other. And so, me and my sister have a, have a funny, we have, a funny picture, folder, or album, and it's a shared folder. And so, you know, in fact for her graduation, I actually took some pictures from that and hung them, and hung them up on her picture board. But, so I, I was going through my uncle's closet, and he's like six feet tall and I'm five feet and a half, and so when I wore his, I wore one of his tracksuits and it was super big on me. And I, you know, I dressed up like a rapper and I took a picture and I put it in our shared album. Um, you get a notification and so I knew she'd be notified about it. But instead I put it in our basketball team’s shared folder, and needless for me to say it, it was very, very bad because, um, everybody was like, “Oh N-Honey in the house.” You know, they, they -- I- I- still haven't recovered from that. Um, yeah, so lesson learned, you know, check what shared folder you upload something to.

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“It looked like someone had come through with marker and just drawn it in the sky, photoshopped it with their bare hands.”

I think, uh, there was one rainbow in particular. It’s hard to pick your favorite rainbow in Iceland. It’s like picking your favorite child. But, one of the ways I convinced myself to put the money down to go to Iceland was we found a house in rural Iceland that was just – I guess you would call it a geodome? It wasn’t actually built like a house, persay. It was a dome. And, to get there, we had to drive down a road that seemed like it was being made as we were driving it. There was a grader, um, basically, digging up road and – it was dirt, and, like, the only way you could get down it was to gun it in our – in our Ford Escape – which was known as a “Kuga” in, in Iceland – or else you’d get stuck in the road. So it was basically in this back country location and, uh, it was pouring rain when we arrived, but only, like, halfsie, so, and that’s the perfect rainbow building conditions. And just over our geodome house was a double rainbow. That’s, um, it looked like someone had come through with marker and just drawn it in the sky, Photoshopped it with their bare hands. Which is just called coloring. Um, it was — it was so rad.

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“It was a random act of kindness, but it was a rainbow to my embarrassment”

I got a little rainbow tidbit um last summer when I was on a road trip with my daughter. We stopped at a McDonald's for a quick meal. This Mickey D's had two driveways that both took you to the same drive through and I inadvertently cut a fellow off, he cursed at me and I shrugged in embarrassment. And I heard him yelling at me. I pulled up to the order box and told gal what we wanted to eat. We pulled forward and we waited in line to pay, he and his car load, he and his car load took their turn ordering their food. Sorry I am reading this. When I got to the Pay Here window, I paid for mine and my daughter's food and asked the gal how much the car behind me owed their food? It was $18 and some change, so I paid his bill too. We pulled forward and collected our food at the next window and as I was driving off, I heard the horn toot and thank you. It was a random act of kindness, but it was a rainbow to my embarrassment. And I probably made his day, too.

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