New Adventures, Chapter 3: Exploring With Friends (and yes, I have them)

The secret is out, America. Against all odds, I have, indeed made some unpaid friends who are not related to me here at college! On Friday, we got crêpes, look a little promenade (I know words) through Central Park, and then explored the City.

We took a train to China Town (it was so cool and DELICIOUS and everything in their convenience stores are so cheap, HALLELUJAH!) and then after that, we went down to Wall Street–which is dead at night because it’s only an area where fancy business people work–which was beautiful at night.

I wish I could record everything with my mind. I don’t have the best memory, and I just wish I could remember this stuff forever. Every day I look outside my window at the skyline and city, I can’t believe that this is real. So I am trying to take plenty of pictures, and I am very happy to share them with you ūüôā

Also, just totally unrelated but definitely important, I wanted to add that this is something that exists and I ate it:

This was worth the $15… right?


Go to Black Tap and you shan’t regret it!

New Adventures, Chapter 2: Fear in the Big Apple

I am scarred for life. I was walking down the street, as ya do, and looking at people (which is bad, very very wrong of me. Rule 1 of NYC life: always stare at the beautiful sidewalk below. If you’re lucky you’ll find a penny, which is more than I’ll have in probably a month. COLLEGE, AM I RIGHT?), when I saw this couple walking my direction. 

The guy was normal looking (interpret that as you will) but the woman he was with… well, she was dressed in regular clothes, seemed totally ordinary until you LOOKED AT HER FACE. I know what you’re thinking: Wow, Maddy, how can you be so shallow, have you looked in the mirror lately? What was that you said about a Freshman -15 or did you get hungry and eat the computer after you wrote that? All valid questions (though they may sting), but what was actually scary about this woman was that she had Chewbacca’s face. I don’t say this in a derogatory way, I just mean that literally, her face was Chewbacca from Star Wars. Like she had human eyes and everything but around those eyes was brown fur, basically this: 

I still get chills just thinking about this sight. It was just so confusing. I felt disoriented and scared as I stumbled back to my dorm like a drunkard, still shocked by what I’d just seen. It was not until days later that I realized this was during the NYC Comic Con. All of a sudden, everything started to make sense. The image still keeps me up at night, though. 

And that’s that.

P.S. I like mayo! 

An Apology to my Fan

Dear Fan (Mom? Dad? Someone?),

I am so sorry for my inconsistency and laziness when it comes to posting. I feel really bad, but it’s no excuse. You, my one and only fan/reader deserve better. So today I will try to make amends with much detail and the tentative promise that I’ll probably attempt to post more regularly in the future. I’ll do it for you, fan. Thanks for your support, I am so happy you’ve taken the time out of your day to read the first words that come into my head in the unedited (raw) jumble that I call this blog. God bless you and you look great today. 


Mad Dawg 

New Adventures: Chapter 1

HAPPY 16th ANNIVERSARY OF GILMORE GIRLS, EVERYONE! Today, in honor of this most glorious holiday (and to add extra hype–as if it needed any more–to the Gilmore revival coming to Netflix on Black Friday), 200 coffee shops across America transformed into the famous Luke’s Diner from 7 AM to 12 PM, giving free coffees to the first 250 customers.

It was GREAT, almost like bringing this dream world I’ve absolutely loved being a part of for these past almost 8 months (I started after my surgery and it truly gave me the strength to go on. Haha, THANKS MOM!) to life. Of course, it was a coffee shop, not a diner, so it didn’t really look like Luke’s, but the baristas wore backwards “Luke’s Diner” baseball caps, flannel shirts, and aprons with the “Luke’s” logo, which was plenty for me. I got a Luke’s Diner sleeve on my coffee cup (which is not hanging in all its glory on my dorm wall–the sleeve, not the cup!). 

I walked 1.5 miles to get to a Central Ground Coffee on the east side, only to be met by a line stretching all the way around the block. But was I deterred? Of course not, I’d do anything for Gilmore Girls (especially anything for Milo Ventimiglia, aka Jess, because I love him)! So I just found a new one! It was completely worth the two mile walk, let me tell you! Now if only November 25 would hurry up and get here already! 

I also went to the YMCA and ended up playing basketball with a few guys for about two hours, and right after, I went to my second Stove’s (our school’s comedy club) meeting. Those two things in conjunction really lifted my spirits and made what was already a good day even better. Let’s keep this up (and continue to fight the freshman 15, which I have not forgotten about, although if you see me, it may look like I have ūüėĄ). 

Behold my pictures! 

There it is, a beacon of home shining in the distance: 

Believe it or not, this was the much shorter line:


As a narcisstic young youth, it was inevitable that I’d take a selfie to brag about something few people actually knew or cared about (doesn’t my half-face look randiant?):

LUKE IS HERE!! He has aged well and looks as stiff as usual (that was a joke! Because he’s a cardboard cutout? *Crickets* Bad joke, got it). I wholeheartedly agree with the no man bun rule!

Time for the artsy shot that simultaneously shows off that yes, I still live in NYC:

An intimate moment shared between coffee cup and female (may not be suitable for young children to see):

Have a great night, everyone! 

Honesty is the Best Policy

I want to apologize. I feel that I have been dishonest in my representation of my college experience through what I have chosen to post. My days are not all music festivals and live tapings of talkshows. In truth, that weekend was the only one I have actually gone out with people and done stuff in the city. I mostly just do my homework, go to class, or waste time in my dorm room. I will leave the campus to go to my Japanese lesson each weekend when I walk over a mile to get to the Waldorf Astoria, but otherwise I do not get out much.

This is my own fault, of course. I know this sounds bad, but I don’t really want to have to lie and say that everything is perfect. Since Friday, I have been feeling pretty down, actually. My school has two campuses and the sporting facilities are on the other one. I knew that, and I still chose to come to the campus without the sporting facilities. I have not been going to the YMCA very much (a bad habit I need to kick, once I get a bit more on top of the workload that went from 0-100 in a mere week), but even there, there are no basketball leagues. I miss being on a team and having that support system/community that comes with trying your hardest and working towards a common goal at something you all love. Sports have been a part of my life for as long as I can remember, so now that I have made that part of me obsolete, I am panicked. This is not a sentiment unique to me or my situation, though.

I have no idea who I am. It is also possible that I never actually knew who I was in the first place. Leaving the place that I called home for the last 18 years to the place where I have always dreamt of living has not gone how I planned. Without sports, my family, or my friends as a support system/something familiar, my identity is somewhat a mystery to me. I am not entirely comfortable exploring the city on my own because I am not entirely comfortable with myself anymore. New York City is not a place that will baby you, which is a fantastic thing, but it has also been a tough pill to swallow. This independence is unlike anything I have had or really sought out before. I am aware that a month has flown by and I have trouble thinking of ways I have taken advantage of what the city has to offer. I know that this is bad. I hope that by writing this, you know that I want to be open, not only with others, but with myself, that something needs to change within me if I want to ever live life to the fullest and enjoy college while it lasts.

I am choosing to challenge myself to getting the most out of the city possible. In trying to get out and do something different or explore somewhere new each day, I hope that I will also be discovering who I am when my identity no longer revolves around a city and the relationships and image I had forged over 18 years. This is my life behind the curtain. This is also hopefully the lowest I will ever get. In coming to NYC I knew that I was taking a risk, which is something that I usually try to avoid. I have always loved to play things safe, whether it is basketball or monopoly. But that needs to end. In going out of my comfort zone, I will change.

Time to take action. Word.


P.S. Thank you so much to everyone that has supported me so much through my various meltdowns and freakouts over these past few days. I will promise that they (probably) won’t happen from here on out ūüôā

P.P.S. Ball is still and will always be life. Also happy hockey season, everyone. Let’s Go Pens!!!!!!

Last Week Tonight

This post is not a plug for John Oliver (that bum’s show is impossible to get into, forget him… John, if you’re reading this, I didn’t mean that. Give me tickets.). This is an apology for taking a week to talk about last weekend. But luckily for you (my two loyal readers–Hi Mom and Dad!), I am squeezing in time to write this weekend in between watching the premier of Saturday Night Live tonight and doing abso-freaking-lutely nothing. It is safe to say that last weekend was probably the most exciting and action-packed one I will have for months (I don’t get out much).

Friday night was The President’s Ball, which is a fancy alternative name for Homecoming Dance (Barack wasn’t even there, they lied to me!). I went with my roommate. It was at our other campus, which has BOYS and SPORTS so I couldn’t wait to get there (all sports are on the other campus, and seemingly most of the boys are as well, just FYI). I donned one of the three dresses I brought to college with me (I should have worn them all, that would have been memorable), did my hair, and attempted to do my makeup (I don’t understand makeup and I am bad at using it. I wish I was good, though,¬†because¬†mine is a face that probably needs it).

The subject appears to be feigning an air of surprise (trying to make candid selfies a thing?), but just look at that smug smile and those cold, emotionless eyes that beg “Love me”.IMG_7676.PNG

The Ball was really fun! We danced for hours, and although I did not make any new friends, it was nice to at least see what boys my age looked like, because I was starting to forget. Kidding. Sort of. IMG_7673.PNG

It was a great time. After about two and a half hours there, I went with a group to explore a bit of the area outside of the gates, and I am happy and shocked to say that I made it through the Bronx alive. Also, it was pouring down rain, so maybe the fact that I looked like a drowned rat (as Cinderella’s chariot turned back into a pumpkin at midnight, my face and hair returned to it’s original slovenly homeless-esque state) helped scare people off. Our group made our way home on the Subway (after slight confusion and getting on the wrong train, we figured it out) and rallied from four and a half hours of sleep to get in line for the Global Citizen Festival on Saturday. My roommate had extra tickets and was kind enough to invite me. We were on our feet from about 9:30 AM to 10:30 PM, but it was worth it, because we had an awesome time. I got to see: Major Lazer, Cat Stevens, Chris Martin, Usher, Ellie Goulding, Yandel, Metallica, Kendrick Lamar (THE BEST OF THEM ALL), and Rihanna. Bill Nye the science guy even made an appearance, so I guess you could say that all of my dreams came true. I can count the number of concerts I’ve attended¬†before this on one hand (Taylor Swift, Night Riots, Def Leppard, and Fitz and the Tantrums–quite the range) so this was truly a special experience!!


Afterwards, I had an incredible adventure. I say incredible ironically, though, because after the Festival, my phone died, and I got separated from the rest of my group in the midst of the crowd. I figured it’d be easier to just meet them at the dorm then to try and fight the crowd to find them, so I ventured off with some pep in my step, still humming some Rihanna as I basked in post-concert euphoria. However, I soon snapped out of my reverie, as I apparently made a wrong turn out of the concert and ended up on 85th East (I live on the West side). I ended up asking a buffed and tatted cop who looked like he could kill me for directions. So I went a walking along and things began looking familiar, but I realized I was still kind of far, so I thought I’d take a shortcut…through Central Park…at night…alone. I thought that there’d be tons of other concert-goers, but where I was going it was actually disturbingly empty. I got pretty creeped out and exited after a little while, but somehow ended up back on the East Side (the city is a grid, how do I manage to get so lost??). So, tired and with my tail between my legs, I flapped my hand about weakly in a sorry attempt to hail a cab (people don’t bother me in NYC because I look like one of the crazy people that everyone is trying to avoid). Eventually I did end up hailing one and returned safe and sound back to school. What should have been a twenty minute walk back took me about an hour, but I made it, and that’s a win in my book (I like to set the bar low).

Finally, Monday night I took my roommate to see the live taping of the Late Show with Stephen Colbert. The first week of school we were emailed about the opportunity and I pounced on it (plus, they’re FREE!!) and got two¬†General Admission tickets! We walked to the Ed Sullivan Theatre (British spelling because I’m so sophisticated) around 7, an hour before they’d start letting people in. We got in line and there were only about 30 people ahead of us. The wait flew by and we were soon stamped with Colbert’s face and were given a number that turned out to be irrelevant (they just kind of sat us wherever was available) before sending us to go wait in a nearby bar (I ordered a Shirley Temple, like the naughty little minx I am), where they’d pick us up after checking everyone in.

After they got us, we were placed in the last row on the first level, which turned out to be great seats, since we could see the whole stage and weren’t blocked by cameras when the show started. Since it was the night of the first Presidential debate, they had it playing on monitors for the entire audience to see. It was so much fun to watch it with a big crowd. It was entertaining, but also slightly scary because this is apparently¬†real life and actually happening, but I don’t want to get too controversial on here (we’ll save that for November(: ). Soon after the debate/circus ended, a hilarious hype man came out (Paul Mercurio, look him up) and warmed up the crowd.

Then the man, the myth, the legend, THE Stephen Colbert (I¬†should’ve been the hype man!) came out on the stage! This was before the show even actually started. He did a Q and A with what time he had before he had to go on air for the Late Show’s first live show in a month, and then we were off. The night flew by and it was an overall incredible experience. I now¬†really¬†want to get to intern for that show. I hope they still take me even though I may have bombed my French test yesterday (mon Dieu, pardonnez moi!). ūüôā Have a great weekend, everyone.


P.S. I did not know where to put this picture, nor do I have any context to explain it, but I just believe that it needed to be shared:


Life in the Slow Lane

I did something crazy today. I woke up at 7:30 on a day where I don’t have any classes. To exercise.

Pretty wild, right? I KNOW! And believe me, it wasn’t easy, but oddly enough, I was actually excited to do it.

I was obsessed with The Olympics this year. I watched them every single day, almost all of the time. When they showed montages of all of the big moments from the Games right before the closing ceremonies, I sobbed like a baby. The Olympics made me want to try every single sport in the Games (I actually am still lamenting my ill-advised decision to quit judo in third grade. I COULD HAVE BEEN AN OLYMPIAN!). Michael Phelps and all of the swimmers were especially inspirational. They all looked like they were having a lot of fun and the guy swimmers have bodies comparable to those of Greek gods, so obviously it piqued my interest. Also, as someone recovering from an injury and trying to remedy her general pudginess, I knew swimming was a great full-body workout that was easy on the joints and wouldn’t bother my knee. The only problem is that I’m an awful swimmer.

So, I’ve actually been swimming since preschool. My school from Pre-k to 8th grade actually shared a campus with a university, so they let us use their pool in exchange for the joy that a child’s laughter brings (I actually have no idea what they got out of sharing their pool, gym, and cafeteria with us, because I’m 100% sure the college kids hated us). So I have been “swimming” for a long time. But I actually always held my nose when I swam and jumped in the water, or I used scuba goggles that cover your nose. So the whole time I was swimming, I had no idea how to breathe under water. This meant I also had no idea how to do the strokes, so basically I couldn’t swim. Now that I look back on it, I really just treaded water and did somersaults and crappy one-handed handstands (I needed a hand to hold my nose, obviously!), so I wasn’t getting anywhere (in third through fifth grade we actually were forced to do a synchronized swimming show, which was the bane of my existence and to this day I can’t listen to “Moon River” or “Puff the Magic Dragon”¬†without cringing [“Puff the Magic Dragon” was already cringe-worthy though. And very depressing! I mean seriously: “One sad night it happened, Jackie Paper came no more/
And Puff that mighty dragon, he ceased his fearless roar./His head was bent in sorrow, green scales fell like rain,/¬†Puff no longer went to play along the cherry lane./¬†Without his life-long friend, puff could not be brave,/¬†So puff that mighty dragon sadly slipped into his cave. oh!” Is it just me or is that seriously messed up?!]. But that’s a story for another time. Contact me if you want more synchronized swimming details because I’ve got a lot to say about that).

So back home, I started going to the YMCA to swim. My first time was pretty rough, but I kept coming back because it was fun and the water felt good. I ended up swimming almost 70 laps later than same week and I felt like I’d improved. Did I look like I was drowning as I splashed around haphazardly, zig zagging across my lane (and probably into the one next to me)? Yes. But no one gave a crap. And I liked that. I just got to do my own thing and exercise on my own terms, and that made it fun. So when I joined the YMCA in NYC, I was of course excited to have a basketball court nearby to use, but I was also really excited to keep swimming. So I got up early today to swim. I saw all of the lanes were full with two people except for the one closest to me, which was empty.¬†Score!!¬†I thought happily.¬†What great luck I have!¬†But unfortunately, I am a rare combination of being bad at swimming and an idiot. So I didn’t know that the empty lane was for the fastest swimmers. I enjoyed myself for my first 18 or so laps, using a pull buoy and a kick board for a couple, then swimming breast stroke (my favorite…at the time) for about 12 laps. But when I got to the one end, I was stopped by a lifeguard.

“Your form is a mess and really hard to watch so I’m going to try to fix it.”

Wow! In that case, I would¬†love¬†for you to help me out (that was sarcasm)! I didn’t appreciate the way she worded that, but I honestly did want to improve. I tried hard but I had trouble with the stroke (especially the kick) and my breathing pattern is still awful (since no one ever taught me), and I also could feel this lady judging me hard with every move I made. Then this fifty or sixty-something year-old dude came to this lane (which I still didn’t know was the “fast lane”). He was in a speedo, so he clearly knew what was up (speedo=knows how to swim. Should I start wearing a speedo?) asked me if I wanted to stay on one side or go in circles. When he asked me if I was going to go in circles, I thought he was mocking me, but after some research it turns out it’s just a method of sharing a lane while lap swimming. Anyway, I just told him I’d stay on my side. But while watching him lap me over and over, I grew disheartened. The life guards switched out and then while I was pausing for breath before my last lap, the new lifeguard informed me about the lane policies with “slow” and “fast” and how I was in the fastest, and then I was embarrassed because it was clear to both of us that I should be in the slowest lane. So I ended up only doing 30 laps and then retreating from the pool with my tail between my legs. They took all of the joy from swimming. WHY COULDN’T THEY JUST LET ME BE? All they had to do was look at me and they’d know that this flabby girl looks like she needs some exercise, who cares if I’m doing things wrong or right, it’s not anyone else’s business!!! If I saw someone shooting a basketball weirdly but the shot still went in, I wouldn’t say “Hey, you’re wrong, do it like¬†this.” Sigh. Sorry for the rant. If this ever happens to you, don’t let anyone bring you down. I’m planning on going back there soon. I’m going to watch some videos to work on getting the right form (I’m still perplexed how I could mess up friggin BREAST STROKE but apparently I looked like a dying animal or something offensive because that life guard was very bothered!), and then I’m going to happily hop into the slowest lane and just try to have fun and do my best (and in the lifeguard’s defense, I was probably also being a bit oversensitive. This is New York City after all! Only the tough ones make it).

Before soul was crushed…


…and After


The Quest to Achieve the Freshman -15 Begins NOW!

“I want to be able to recognize you when we visit in October,” my mom said to me, just a few days before leaving for college. When I told some friends about this, they said how hilarious my mom is (shoutout to Dana C). Too bad she wasn’t joking.

These words continue to haunt me. She meant that she hopes I won’t eat everything in sight, making way for a Freshman 15 (or 30, I can go pretty crazy). This made me sad, because it would be a disappointing first reunion since dropping me off if my parents screamed when they saw me or hugged some other girl who vaguely resembled me before Free Fast Food Friday and Ice Cream Socials stretched and hideously contorted my features so that I’d look like the freaky giant baby from Spirited Away:


I really don’t want that to happen. Partly because I can’t pull of the whole being bald and fat combination (it’s only cute on babies) and also because it would be pretty unfulfilling and sad (I mean, look at that baby. It’s clearly crying for help). So, with my mom’s words in mind, and the ominous thought of the “FRESHMAN 15” floating around in my head, I have resolved to lose a Freshman 15 instead of gain one. The Freshman -15, if you will (I exercised today so I am tired and not feeling very creative right now, okay?!).

How’s that going for me, you ask? Well, in the 14 days that I have been in college, I have only once (not including today) and I’ve played basketball twice. But I’ve also walked more this month than I ever have (not saying much, but I’m trying here). An iPhone App (so it’s clearly reliable and 100% right… right?) says that ¬†for September, I’ve walked an average 3.05 miles a day (this is funny because I actually didn’t go outside once yesterday). I clearly have to get more serious about working out.¬†I also know those are only words. But today was a good first step. I ran (and, I will admit, walked a BIT) five miles in Central Park in the afternoon. Am I slow? As molasses. Do I look good when I run? Parents frantically cover their children’s eyes when I trot by. But I did it, and that’s what counts.


I really miss playing team sports. In field hockey practices, I could run three miles without noticing and have a blast doing it. But the past is the past, and I learned from our school’s president (an AMAZING orator), “you can’t live a half life.” I can’t have one foot still in high school and the other one here. I need to dive all in to college. It won’t be the same, but that’s kind of the best part. It’s scary, for everything to be new and unfamiliar, but it’s also exciting… Almost as exciting as the thought of waking up early before my 8:30 class to exercise (I’m easing into the whole getting back into shape thing so I think the early morning stuff probably will have to wait). I ate a salad today though, so I guess that’s something.

That picture of the fat baby is actually terrifying and really motivating… I think I’ve found my new lock screen!!¬†fullsizerender-3


P.S. This may be TMI but I just found a bruise on my bottom and I’m worried that someone may be pinching my rear while I’m asleep, or throwing rocks at my backside when I’m not paying attention. I am genuinely perplexed and I invite you to take a gander at why this may have appeared because I would really love an answer.

P.P.S. My mom is probably so embarrassed that I just said that^ Don’t worry, Mom, I’m only embarrassing myself, and I’m used to it!!!

P.P.S. The other day I was in the vicinity of Tom Hanks. No, I did not see him, but he was there and that’s what makes it almost exciting.

The First “Scary” Thing to Happen to Me in NYC

I have now been in New York City for two weeks. I have always dreamed of living here, but then on the car ride over, I did as I usually do, and psyched myself out and worried myself to death. I thought that as soon as I arrived, I’d be attacked by a hoard of angry hobos and robbed at gunpoint in the middle of a busy sidewalk.

As you can see, I’m an idiot.

Because New York isn’t a scary place. Just don’t walk around by yourself (when you’re a girl you have to be especially wary of this, unfortunately) in isolated areas and you’re fine. The crowdedness of NYC is actually what makes it so safe. At least I think. I’ve only been here two weeks, so I’m no expert. Only one “scary” thing has happened to me in my time here thus far, though.

Basically, I was walking around by myself in the evening. I was almost at school, so I quickened my pace. This guy in front of me holding a giant black umbrella happened to be going the same direction, and I think he thought I was following him. So when I quickened my pace he whipped around holding up the umbrella like he was going to beat me with it. My eyes got really wide and I just stopped and waited for him to turn around. I stayed put and he walked on a few feet before whipping around with his umbrella again. I waited until he was out of sight to cross the street and that was that. It’s actually pretty funny, now looking back on it. So that’s the closest I have come to danger in the big city (just knocked on wood so I didn’t jinx myself). I am excited for all of the adventures that lie ahead!!