This is the week that ...
... I won second place in a pub quiz with friends.
Last time we came in first, and really, John and I only contributed to 5 points of this 118 point 90s-themed quiz (the rest of it was totally up to our friends, Lynne and Rachel), but to place second (well, tied-second) out of 15 teams? Not bad. Not bad at all. (Also, seriously: can you name EVERY member of the Backstreet Boys? Every time I tried to conjure up a name - besides Nick Carter - only the smiling faces of 'NSYNC would pop into my head. Lynne made the mistake of saying, "What about Nick Lachey?" and I snapped at her, "NO, HE WAS IN 98 DEGREES, DUH.")
... I asked an Etsy seller to customize a pair of embossed leather luggage tags to read, "Mrs. & Mrs." instead of "Mr. & Mrs." and he was happy to oblige.
I mean, the fact that I felt nervous and anxious after I sent my request off to him made me feel so sad. What if his response was negative? How do my LGBTQ friends deal every day with this kind of shit? It was that realization that hit me hard. But thankfully, his response was helpful and positive. So, shout out to KarlvonArtistry's beautiful leather goods shop on Etsy.
... I had a pleasant exchange with the guy next to me on the bus.
Which never happens in London. We're in our own little bubbles and our end-goal is to get from Point A to Point B with as little human interaction as possible. Period. But I sat next to him on the top deck of the bus on Wednesday night and we had a little awkward, "Are you getting off ...? Oh, let me get out of the way if you are ..." mini-conversation, which then turned into jokes and small talk about how bad London traffic is, etc. Folks, it was the smallest thing, but it was real and it was a reminder that there is some humanity left in the world right now.
... a nice lady picked up my receipt which had my order number on it, after I dropped it during the mad pre-work rush at POD.
If you're not familiar with POD, they have this stressful (but, actually, totally smart) system of having two lines - one for ordering, one for picking up your order - and calling out your order number when it's ready. I was pre-occupied with checking my phone (obvs) and accidentally dropped my receipt, when a lady to my right noticed, swooped in, and said, "Oh! Don't lose that!" with a friendly smile and handed it back to me. Again, so small, but just - a kind gesture.
... I made a few (tough) phone calls to my Senators and Congressmen back home about my concerns.
My heart was pounding and I felt tearful, but I wrote a short script, read it aloud to the staffers who answered the phone, asked them when I could expect to receive a response, and was met with positivity on the other end of the line. If you're a US citizen, you can find your local representatives here, and if you're calling from the UK, you can use ZipCall to call for free, from your phone. If you don't know where to start, my friend linked this super helpful calling sheet, which you don't have to follow to the T, but it's a great jumping off point.
We need to be kind to each other right now, and do things that will make us feel better. Last week, I was all about staying in, lighting candles, and baking banana bread. And that's okay. I needed that. This week, I wanted to act, so I did. I have a few more calls to make.
Have a wonderful weekend. Thank you, always, for being here for me. xo