There are many God-given talents that were NOT bestowed upon me, but there are four in particular that I am truly disappointed that I missed out on. Most people have at least 1 of the talents listed on my I-wish-I-had-one-of-these-talents-in-life list below, and if you have more than 1 on my list, then I hate you. Apparently, God thought that it would be amusing to watch me awkwardly go through life, pretty much talentless and always trying. In the "talents" department, God gave me the ability to produce wild dance moves that emerge the moment I hear the beat of any song......is that even a talent or skill, I don't know!?! That's it, that concludes my list of God-given talents.
Talents that I'd kill for:
1) Ability to Sing (well that is). I can sing "well" if the music is turned up to 92 decibels OR if I'm in the shower and the water has greatly muffled my hearing. I sound really amazing in the shower! It's just really bad all across the board. You would pay me big bucks to stop. It's a killer combination of not remembering ANY lyrics to any song, or singing the wrong lyrics to any song, being tone deaf, sounding nasaly and having no octave/vocal range. At all.
2) Artistic ability - I am pretty much limited to drawing stick figures at this point in my life. Did you know that one can actually lose the teensy tiny bit of ability that one had from childhood? I didn't know that this was possible considering I didn't start out with much to begin with. I guess I had practiced drawing enough flowers, hearts and rainbows as a child, that I became pretty darn good at them. Now, at age 32, my 4-year-old requests that I draw him things at random and I'm like "oh, $hit, this is going to be bad." Nobody can discern what the hell I am drawing and even the most creative 4-year-old mind gets frustrated...."Mom, I told you that I wanted you to draw a dog!" "That is a dog, Connor!" "No, that looks like a turtle, Mom (in a frustrated voice)!!!" I know for a fact that I could draw a recognizable dog at age 12.......stick figures, stick figures, that's what I'm sticking with from now on.
3) Public Speaking - I.WOULD.RATHER.DIE.OR.GO.TO.THE.DENTIST. If there are more than 2 people looking at me while I am speaking, then I stop. I am not kidding. Public speaking tries to ruin my life, but I won't let it. No siree Bob! True story - in college I would check the syllabus first thing and look for the words "presentation/group presentation" and do the skedaddle and drop that class as fast as a hot plate.
Can I tell you, the sick ba$tards at my college made Oral Communications (aka Public Speaking) mandatory. What kind of perverse twisted minds get together and come up with this crap? I would LOVE to meet the individual that decided to make public speaking mandatory in order for me to graduate! I can picture the University Dean and his minions sitting around a board room table discussing it, "Let's go ahead and force our students to face one of their greatest fears." "That sounds like a swell idea, Mike, would do you have in mind?" "Public speaking." "Awww, yea, Mike, perfect, and we'll just make it mandatory in order for them to graduate!" Then Steve says, "Mike, next year we'll make bungee jumping from the Empire State Building mandatory, and the following year, each student will need to be placed in a pit of 10 snakes in order to graduate." "Steve, you've outdone yourself on this one, our students are going to be warriors after they face their greatest fears," says Mike!
I mean, I have used Biology 101, Psychology 101, and even Underwater Basketweaving 101 more daily than I have used my Oral Communications.
You better believe that I saved that damn class for the last semester of my senior year. My very last semester. It was me and 30 freshmen. It was ugly. I barely received a C-, and I'm pretty certain that the professor just felt bad for me and gave me that grade. I would stand up there sweating profusely, so overcome by adrenaline that I wouldn't even know my own name and would robotically read each word verbatim on the paper held by my shaky hand. I was monotone. My Sympathetic Nervous System had kicked in, I was ready for fight or flight....my mouth would be so parched that I began to resemble Fire Marshall Bill.
Look up, you're supposed to look up, DO IT, I'd tell myself, you're grade is contingent on eye contact. So, I'd awkwardly look up in the middle of the word "and". A----look up---ND. I'd look back down at my paper to quickly realize that I had lost my spot because there were roughly 104 "ands" on the page. Damnit!!! Why did I pick the word "and" to look-up during? For an awkward and painful 61 silent seconds, all eyes in the room would stare at me, just waiting, as I frantically scoured the page for that "and" that I had been on. Due to the long excruciating silence that I had just caused, I'd now begin to stutter on every word. This is how every speech went. Every damn speech. The professor promised it would get easier and easier after every speech, but she had fed me sweet lies. I was as bad on my first speech as I was on my 8th. I still have nightmares about that class! If you have the ability to stand-up in front of others and not give a $hit what anyone thinks of you and just ramble on and are comfortable in your skin.....YOU ARE A REMARKABLE HUMAN BEING AND I WISH THAT I WAS YOU!
4) Running/endurance. I will begin by saying that it's a blessing that I was born in 1981 outside of a large metropolitan area. I grew up in an area where grocery stores, convenient stores and public transportation could be found in great abundance. I am white, I am Irish, and I was not built for long distance running. I know for a fact that I would have either starved to death or been quickly mauled by some wild animal had I been born in let's say 1861 in the African Savanna. One look at me, and you know that my Irish ass would die in the Savanna. I was physically built to visit local grocery stores and spend way too much time staring at what fruits and vegetables are best out of produce bins. My Irish ancestors, with a twinkle in their eyes, and love in their hearts, drank their Guinness beer, listened to "Oh Danny Boy", and ate their corned beef and cabbage (and lots and lots of potatoes). I blame my lineage for my lack of endurance and running inability, I was built for eating, drinking and being 'merry'! I don't think an Irish won a long distance run in the Olympics EVER....actually, I'm going to Google that for confirmation.....okay, I stand corrected, an Irish woman placed 2nd in 2000, but I'm thinking she isn't 100% Irish.
You see, I aspire to be a runner, I have for most of my days. I tried to run cross-country for 1 year in high school (tried is the operative word). It was mugly! I was always the 2nd to last one to cross the finish line and I would be huffing and puffing from a last minute sprint with the "other runner" to ensure that I wasn't the last to finish. Don't get me wrong, I am fast, but for a total of 9 seconds, and then I am officially maxed out. Done. I have no endurance, at all, and no matter how hard and long I practice, I just can't tap into that special part of the brain that ignores the physical discomfort and pushes on. I think that I don't have that part of my brain. I remember in elementary school, when the PE teacher informed us that it was a Fun Run day (we had to run 1 mile), I would give her the stink eye and wonder how she could be so evil. Nobody, and I mean nobody, should have FUN and RUN in the same sentence, I realize that it rhymes, but that is no excuse, because there is nothing fun about running!
Not only do I have a mental issue with running, I am somewhat limited physically, as I have sports induced asthma. If I exert myself to a point, I can trigger a lengthy attack = horrible! I don't know what is more painful, watching me run, or me actually running. In order to take in more oxygen I tend to run with my head back and mouth open, not so pretty. I also have a tendency to experience what I call "lizard tongue". I've done "lizard tongue" since I was a little kid; while I played Atari or Nintendo, I not only moved the controller in the direction that I wanted to go, but my tongue would emerge and also move in the direction that I was looking to go. It was an all-body attempt at getting Mario where he needed to go, including that tongue of mine. While running, the tongue emerges if I'm really pushing myself to aid me in the direction that I am heading. Lastly, my legs feel like lead, they are heavy and they are dragging, so the "run" quickly turns into a shuffle at the 1 minute mark.
For the next 2 weeks I will be out there on the mean streets of Purcellville trying to "correct & defy" my inability to run. I've got my head tilted back, the "lizard tongue" out, a look of absolute despair on my face and those heavy feet of mine are dragging. If you see me out there during the next 2 weeks, give me a honk and a wave and say a prayer for me, I'll need it!
Running on Empty.........: