1. Hooray blog redesigns! I started this blog in June of 2011 and had done exactly zero things to update the look since that time, and a few weeks ago I started to think it was time for a change. The direction of my blog has shifted a bit since when I began blogging (which is to say, a direction now exists, as opposed to the random posting I did when I started this nearly five years ago), so hopefully a refresh kind of sort of reflects that. I added a few new pages to the navigation bar (^^ up yonder) so you can now more easily find my marathon training recaps (which I’m sure you are all just dying to reread every day of your lives) along with some of my favorite posts from over the years.
2. If you have any sort of social media presence at all, I’m sure you noticed that it was National Siblings Day on Sunday. Per Millennial rules, I made sure to go through old photo albums that day to find the most ridiculous photos of my siblings and me as children, and oh boy, were there some gems.
I don’t have any with my brother that I’m willing to post on the Internet, because my brother was born only about a year before I got glasses, and let me tell you, no one needs to be subjected to seeing photos of me as an eight year old in glasses the size of my face. I remember reading in American Girl magazine (or maybe one of the American Girl books?) that if you tilted your head down, it would prevent glare in pictures, and I took that TO HEART as a kid. Therefore, nearly all of the photos of me as a kid look like I’m trying to give the camera some sort of come hither look and…yeah. It’s bad. So we’ll keep those photos in my photo album where they belong, and remember to thank God every night that digital photography and social media didn’t exist until after I outgrew my awkward phase.
3. As you may or may not know, American Idol ended for good last Thursday, and I’m feeling embarrassingly emotional about it. I haven’t consistently watched–okay, fine, haven’t watched at all–American Idol since Season 8, which aired in 2009, so it’s been awhile since that show was a major part of my life. But from Season 2 in 2003 through Season 8, I watched American Idol obsessively and religiously. I’m sure, somewhere in my parents’ basement, are stacks and stacks of VHS tapes, upon which I recorded full episodes and/or my favorite performances to have on hand to watch back at any time (because mind you, this was pre-YouTube for awhile, and even when it was post-YouTube, it was still pre-Bethany’s-family-having-fast-enough-Internet-to-watch-YouTube). I know somewhere in my room in Chicago, I have my Seasons 1-4 highlight DVD, and though most of it didn’t migrate from my old MacBook to my current MacBook, if I were to open up my old MacBook, I’d have dozens of American Idol-related songs on my iTunes.
It feels vaguely inauthentic to say that American Idol was a defining moment in my life, because my involvement with the show didn’t extend beyond watching and voting so many times that I could still tell you the phone number you called to vote (1-866-436-57xx)–and mind you, the only other phone numbers I have memorized are my home number, my cell phone number, my mom’s cell phone number (because she got hers before the rest of us), my old and current work phone numbers, and the home number of my best friend from childhood. I couldn’t even begin to guess at anyone else’s phone numbers. But it feels like it was, probably because I literally grew up watching it. I watched from age 12 to age 18, and I think anyone would agree that those are some pretty developmental years in a person’s life. American Idol made me want to sing, and though I’ve never had the talent to actually make it as a singer, it is something I still love to do (when no one else is around to here me, or when I can blend in at church haha). For years and years I dreamed of auditioning for American Idol, and though I certainly know now that I wouldn’t have stood a chance at getting on the show, there is still a tiny part of me that wishes I had auditioned.
Not to mention, American Idol was directly responsible for my introduction to American Juniors–and my oh my, if we want to talk about defining moments in my life, watching that TV definitely was one of them–and my introduction to So You Think You Can Dance, which was the entire reason I signed up for a dance class when I moved to Chicago, which is the entire reason I have some of the friends I have here. And I did audition for that show.
I watched the series finale, and it felt like stepping back in time–which I suppose is as good of an argument for any in favor of ending the show. But it also felt like I was watching the end of my teenage years play out before my eyes. It was a constant throughout years of enormous change, and even though I stopped watching in college, it still makes me sad to know it won’t be around anymore. It feels so over-the-top to write 500+ words on what a silly reality TV show meant to me, but it truly was a big part of my life for many years, and the finale made me well up.
Please tell me I’m not the only one emotionally attached to TV shows from my childhood.
I have no other relevant questions to ask! Tell me anything! Haha