Believing That We Will Win

My brother and I were waiting to catch the light rail after watching the US men’s soccer team win their sixth Gold Cup. Soccer is one of the things that brings us together as siblings—along with being lifelong Democrats. While the former made for a great day out, the latter ruined the patriotic buzz I had going on. “Time to go home, go to bed, and see what fresh hell Trump has visited upon us tomorrow morning,” he said.

Continue reading

Summer of My (Dis)Content

Last month, I decided to take a week off from blogging after Portuguese school ended so I could focus on hosting the Argonauts vs. Phoenix MLQ series. Then, I took another week off to relax. Then another week, and another week, and then suddenly it’s over a month later and I’m wondering where the time went.

I hated thinking about it because I was looking at it as time wasted. Then I would put off writing some more and keep digging myself into a hole, et cetera and ad nauseam. My infuriating tendency to make the perfect the enemy of the good has left me with a pile of drafts that I’ve started and (mostly) abandoned. Even the stuff I have managed to finish and get published lately feels stale, like a shadow of myself.

There’s this drive to maximize every opportunity, to grab it by the scruff of the neck and drain it of every drop of potential. That’s especially true in the world of online content, a voracious beast that is never satisfied and demands timely, digestible tidbits. When you miss out on publishing during windows like the 20th anniversary of Harry Potter (RIP that draft), you kick yourself for not planning ahead.

Worshipping this idea of hustle, of #cantstopwontstop, and of making every moment productive just isn’t healthy. It makes you fixate on the things you aren’t doing and overlook the things you are doing. It makes you over commit and eventually burn out.

And by “you,” I really mean me. Burned out is not a good look on me.

Are you sick of my excuses and self-flagellation yet? Because I am. I’ve decided to make things a little easier on myself. Instead of demanding perfection, I just want to publish something good. Twice a week, Tuesdays and Fridays, sounds like a sane schedule and something I can balance with work, volunteering, and a personal life. Consistency is something I’ve struggled with but I can come up with two good things a week. Sometimes they may not be as good, but on the other hand, sometimes they might be great.

Anyway, thanks for reading. It’s been nearly a year since I bought this domain and made Barcelos Knows a reality. There’s still so much that I don’t know—but I’m working on it.

Looking ahead…

Not all of those drafts have been buried in the graveyard of abandoned ideas. Here’s a handful that I’ll be bringing back from the dead in the coming weeks.

  • #BarcelosClothes: The poll on my next experiment is now closed. The winner is… cold shoulder tops. Ugh.
  • I managed to tie together quidditch and Portuguese poetry and let me tell you, I am excited.
  • If you’re a fan of my rants taking on shitty behavior and institutions, you are in for a treat.

Poetry with Professora Elizabeth: Mar Português

With the end of Portuguese school in sight and a class full of students with a decent grasp on how to work with regular verbs in the present tense, I decided to take a break from this spring’s conjugation gauntlet and instead expose them to Portuguese as it’s seen in the wild. No more textbooks; it’s time for real Portuguese words written by real Portuguese people for real Portuguese people.

Today’s the last day of Portuguese school for the year. Check out my class’s first foray in Portuguese poetry, A Cozinha da Avô. In honor of Fernando Pessoa’s birthday, today I’m sharing our class’s journey to understanding “Mar Português.”

Continue reading

Scene: Argonauts Thursday Night Practice

MANAGER Barcelos, chatting with CHASER COACH Oelze, mentions the Year in Review that ROOKIE Ardin Lo wrote about his college squad, Cal Quidditch.

ROOKIE: Hey Liz, can you share it on Barcelos Knows?

MANAGER: Are you kidding? You wrote about me as a player. That’s never happened before. Of course I will.

ROOKIE: Yes! We finally made it.

Continue reading

Poetry with Professora Elizabeth: A Cozinha da Avo

Portuguese school is coming to an end for the year. After driving my children through the gauntlet of conjugating -ar, -er, and -ir verbs (along with the lonely pôr, the only -or verb) in the present tense, I wanted to take it easy for the remaining weeks.

Then I got a text message from the preschool teacher.

Continue reading