- Me: Things are mostly complicated, but in the end they are okay. I believe in choosing to be happy, and I choose to be happy regardless of what I'm dealing with.
- S: How does one go about life that way? I’m not trying to come off rude, I’m just a bit curious.. so where are you from and what do you do for fun, Liz who chooses to be happy? And sorry for bombarding you with all these random questions.
- Me: It's quite simple, actually. I just choose to be this way. It's because of this that I don't have much patience for people who sit around and complain instead of making positive changes in their life. Perspective is half the challenge to overcoming the obstacles you face (I'm fully aware of how much this sounds like one of those lame self-motivational posters but I also genuinely believe in it). If someone breaks up with you, you can choose to take it personally and see it as a reflection of your shortcomings as a person or an indication that nobody will ever love you. Or, you can choose to see it as a circumstance of bad timing or mismatched values, and as a new opportunity to do things differently in your life and to do better in future relationships.
- Me: As for where I'm from, well. I live in New York now and this is my home. But I was born in New Mexico and spent some time in upstate New York. My formative years (from nine until eighteen) were all spent in New Jersey, about twelve miles outside of New York. I went to college in Massachusetts, and after I graduated I moved here.
- Me: To ask someone who lives in New York what they do for fun is... well, a question that can't be answered easily. I have mixed feelings about this place because of what "fun" means here. I think "fun" has a very special meaning to a young person living in New York. Life here is often lived as a very intense game of one-upmanship, in which you feel obligated to do things better and more intensely than you've ever done previously. There is always something to do here, all the time. It's overwhelming. I have an endless collection of stories tucked away in my brain that I know I'll tell my children and grandchildren someday, Stories About My Young Wild Days in New York, that they'll all look at me with wonder and awe because they won't believe that the stately and classy old lady I'll grow up to be will have done such things. Reckless things, ridiculous things, wonderful things. I do all of the normal things that any other 25-year-old does for fun, I guess, but... under a magnifying glass. Everything more intense, closer up, and both uglier and more beautiful all at once.