The pit bull chapter

“[Love] isn’t urgent, it isn’t stressful, it isn’t about pity.
I don’t think that to love someone else you should have to
abandon yourself.”

I’m not sure why, but I’ve read a lot of books written by female comedians. [Proof here, and here.] It started when I joined a “book club” with my friends, that never amounted us meeting or discussing said books… but, I digress. This genre is typically an easy read, it’s entertaining, witty, and tends to address larger issues of how women are treated and perceived in a male-dominated industry. For my birthday last year, a friend got me Whitney Cummings’ book, I’m Fine …and Other Lies. While I am familiar with Whitney Cummings, I wouldn’t necessarily call myself a fan of her work; I can remember watching a bit of one of her shows or maybe stand-up and thinking she was pretty cool. At any rate, I gave her book a go.

I learned a lot of information about her: from her struggles with codependency, relationship issues, and severe anorexia, to her very personal experiences with different forms of therapy. With each chapter I became more and more surprised with how dysfunctional her life actually was, and how she managed to turn every bit of it into something positive. There was one chapter that really resonated with me: it started out about how she gravitates towards rescuing pit bulls, explaining that they are a misunderstood breed; often a product of poor training or having been taken from their mothers too young. Pit bulls are the most common dog breed found in shelters, and as a result the most frequently euthanized. One day, she came across a year-old blue pit that was only a couple days away from being euthanized and in desperate need of a home. She ended up taking him in and naming him Billy.

Now her game plan wasn’t to keep Billy, as she already had 3 doggos of her own. Her goal was to figure out his triggers, provide some much needed impulse control training, help him heal from the previous abuse he had experienced, and find him a forever home.

Long story short, she got into a… situation with Billy – and through a combination of poor impulse control and razor-sharp teeth – she found herself with half of her ear dangling from her head. [Side note: I highly recommend reading this book to get all the details, because it’s a pretty crazy story.] But the lesson behind this experience is what really stuck with me. Cummings goes on to explain, what she did with Billy is similar to what she does in relationships – getting herself into a bad situation because she underestimated what she was dealing with. All of this stemmed from an innate addiction – to love.

Some examples of how love addiction can manifest in relationships: ignoring red flags and rationalizing unsavory behavior; glorifying a person instead of accepting who they are showing you they are; falling for someone’s potential instead of who they actually are; letting your world get smaller and making the person (or pit bull you’re trying to rescue) become your primary focus.

And here was the kicker…

“I constantly gave points to men for things that should be filed under ‘the least you can do.'”

Let us all take a moment to remember that your significant other does not earn bonus points for things such as (but not limited to): calling you, wanting to spend time with you, not cheating on you, not lying to you, etc. Things that should be considered bare minimum requirements of being in a committed relationship does not warrant praise. Let me repeat: the bare minimum. Does. Not. Warrant. Praise. Let’s hold our significant others to a higher standard and let go of those who don’t live up to that standard. Don’t accept anything less than exactly what you deserve, and especially don’t do so in the name of love.

It took losing an ear for me to learn to take it slow with people, friends, work relationships, house hunting, hair color decisions, and the animals I bring into my home.” Cummings goes on to remind us to take people at face value instead of projecting our expectations/hopes/dreams onto them. You won’t change someones neurology or value system just by loving them. Love has boundaries, and we shouldn’t lose ourselves for the sake of it. Don’t confuse love with sympathy. And don’t confuse rescuing someone with intimacy.

Thanks for the tip hidden in this gem of a chapter, Whit. < 3

Summer Reading List

Summer is officially here, and you need some good books in your life in order to properly beach it (or to properly tan in your back yard because, whatever). So, please, slowly back away from the TV and keep in mind that now you’re older, you’re going to need some form of brain stimulation, and no one has to force lame summer reading books on you. You have the ability to actually pick books that sound interesting to you! Please refer to the illustration below if you need further motivation to freaking read.


Ya feel me? Here’s what’s on my summer reading list:

Shades of Grey: A Novel by Jasper Fforde

Not to be confused with Fifty Shades of Grey (seeeesh). But, in Shades of Grey, your status in society is determined strictly by your limited color perception. Outstanding, right? The book focuses on one man, with a “better-than-average” red perception, trying to move up and all the obstacles he faces in doing so. I saw it on a list of books to read by BuzzFeed, and seeing as color perception is such a difficult subject to write on (have you ever tried to explain a sunset to someone who is colorblind?), it seems like a really interesting read.

Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns) by Mindy Kaling

Confession. I watched all three seasons of The Mindy Project in an embarrassingly short amount of time (which may have led to my decision to buy all these books in the first place). I fell in love with it, hard and fast. Mindy Kaling as Dr. Mindy Lahiri is every woman who has ever struggled in their career; every woman who has ever desperately pursued a man who wasn’t right for her; every woman who has ever had impossible word vomit at the most inopportune times. And if this show could captivate me so completely, it’s safe to say a memoir by the creator should be just as entertaining.

The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins

This best-selling book has been hailed as the next Gone Girl. Not that I ever read that book to begin with, but I saw the movie (because, Ben Affleck, duh), and as crazy and thrilling as that movie was, The Girl on the Train seems like a quality, slightly disturbing, female-driven thriller. It’s a story about a woman who’s life has systematically fallen apart so she sits on a train daily, usually in a drunken haze, to pass the time. Apparently, this woman witnesses something horrific on one ride, and not only has to try to convince others what she saw, but also herself. I could get into that.

Soften by Erin Elizabeth Wehrenberg

I’ve already started on this book. Soften is a collection of poetry, prose, thoughts and anecdotes from the unique mind of Erin Elizabeth Wehrenberg. A shift from her first 30-page book, her second book is over 500 pages that reads fairly quick. Erin challenges modern thinking and also reminds us that we’re all going through something, and no one is alone. It’s a refreshing, inspiring and thought-provoking read… at any given point a page may speak to you in ways you never knew words on paper could.


Okay– so there you have it. Happy reading!!