Question. Do you guys have on / off modes? Ever since the college days rudely ended and the working days began, I've come to realize just how multi-faceted I can be. (And angelic and generous and hilarious and a SAINT, obviously.)
The way that I see it is that at work I am in my "on mode" – I try to be the best version of myself – positive, helpful, on top of my game. I have more energy, more corny quips, more patience. The second I get home, though? Total off mode. It's a race against myself to be in sweats, heat up some ramen, FaceTime my mom, and sloth around.
It's interesting to think about how the clusters of people I interact with the most, can think of me so differently. My coworkers see Work Caroline, you guys see Blog Caroline (adventurous! hysterical! born to be a star! a queen! ... See I know exactly what you think of me!), my family sees Baby Caroline, my roommates see Sloth Caroline, professors and TA's saw Stanford Caroline, and my closest friends see Carol. Which, by the way, is a nickname I've always loathed, but somehow they sneakily made it into a thing a few years ago and now it's hard to think of me as anything else to them.
Who is Caroline Caroline, though? All of the above. Some days, a little more of this and a tad less of that. Other days, more 'off mode' than 'on mode.' Often, there are crossovers: roommates and coworkers and of course bloggers* become friends, friends become family, so on and so forth. Thus, it looks to be that I'm the sum of all the different parts I've mentioned, and perhaps some that I haven't.
*if you dare.
So today, I'm doing a character study of myself, and telling you about "Carol," the Caroline that my very closest friends know and LOVE and think is extremely intelligent and charming and right no matter what.
Carol... prefers sitting in the backseat because she doesn't like the pressure of being DJ or navigator and also she's the type of person who deserves a chauffeur.
Carol's Taco Bell order... is a Doritos Locos Cheesy Gordita Crunch, fiery and she'd like to share a big cup of the strawberry Starburst slush with her partners in crime. She likes extra corn salsa at Chipotle, and actually... please take Carol to Chipotle at your earliest convenience. Never go to Chipotle without her though because she will yell at you.
Carol... can fall asleep everywhere and anywhere within seconds, dislikes cuddling (except in emergency situations) and very much values her personal space except when she hasn't seen you in awhile. Then she's a bit needy. Also, she hates the waking up part of the morning (her brain has taught her arm how to turn off over ten alarms before she processes that she's even doing so) but once she's up, she's fine. Just dandy.
Carol... has this really gross fascination with having her back cracked. She's also incompetent when it comes to doing her own hair, so when you're with her... consider yourself the official French-braider. She won't do the same for you though.
Carol's closet... contains clothes that 90% are slight variations of the same thing. Loose, slouchy gray sweaters. But they'll grow on you because you'll end up stealing them from her. Her room is exceptionally messy too so she probably won't notice for awhile.
Here's a photo of Leah with Carol:
Do you see Carol yet? She's right there to the right of Leah... kind of cylindrical looking, wearing gray as per usual. You see her? Carol's garbage that's what Carol is. (Carol's laughing at herself for this one.)
Carol... is constantly taking photos of food and you sort of just have to deal with it, but it works out for you in the end because all of your memories and breakfasts get documented with minimal effort from you.
Carol... has nary an athletic bone in her body. She's gotten hit by a groundball that came to a rolling stop from more than 200ft away. You still don't know how it ended up hitting her.
Carol... doesn't drive so you're basically resigned to taking her grocery shopping and furniture shopping and to the doctors' office for the rest of your life. But she loves walking around, especially in cities, and that's where you have some of your best conversations.
Carol... is impressively horrible at calculating tips. In fact, she won't even glance at the receipt and will instead pass it directly to you, expecting you to figure it out for her. In time, it becomes easiest if you simply learn her signature and handle that part of it too. Cashiers find it weird and possibly illegal, but you're not in trouble yet so...
Carol... has a fear of confrontations, serious talks (she once drank a couple of glasses of wine by herself just so she could muster up the courage to talk about an argument from earlier in the day), crossing the street when the pedestrian light isn't green, pigeons, balloons, and small talk. You might have to overcompensate for her in those arenas. Thank you in advance.
Carol... has a huge potty mouth, but she's really good at covering it up when she's not with you guys.
Carol's... favorite part about going to the movies is the previews, but she refuses to look if it's for a horror film.
DISCLAIMER: I do have other friends, I swear. Not many, but they exist. And this post is totally applicable to them too.
Carol... is hands-down giddy about surprising you with small treats. Gifts are her love language. She'll pick up coffee for you or a cupcake or send you a card just because. She likes to file your favorite snacks and knick knacks away in her mind so that she can have something for you when you're having a bad week or an amazing day.
Carol... well, alone time and personal space are also her love languages. She knows they aren't officially love languages in the first place, but just know that she'll love you that much more if you let her have time to herself to watch TV or hang out in bed or read blogs. It's what gives her the energy to do life.
Carol's perfect day... includes naps, a latte, and exploring somewhere new. Thirty million bonus points if it's in another state or country. Fifty billion bonus points if it's a result of a recklessly booked flight from a spot in time she was in a rut or feeling restless.
Carol... prefers savory breakfast / brunches, but she's also more than happy to split a pastry or pancakes if you want some.
Carol... can nurse a single cup of coffee for HOURS. But some days, she'll have three cups in the span of like a morning.
Carol... can sometimes be total crap at texting back. It's just that when you send her more than three texts in a row, she gets a bit overwhelmed and needs time to process it all. Or she thinks she's replied when she actually hasn't. She's the "mark it for later" type. Just call her. She probably won't answer, but you'll be on the top of her mind when she wants to call someone up on her walk to or from work.