Friday, January 30, 2009
Do you understand how that makes every conversation a failure for me?"
Shit is tricky and I am positively floundering in every sense of the word. Bucking hard. Do you know strong a flounder is? When you throw one in the cooler, you'd better sit on the lid. I've seen one almost escape.
But I ate him.
That's to be expected. There is a lot of stuff whirling around in my head. Nonsensical thoughts, some of them.
But I do not jump when someone calls my name. I don't get so wrapped up in an inappropriate daydream that I sometimes forget where I am.
I don't have ridiculous dreams. Ever.
I don't pick it apart over and over. That's the kind of shit that happens in movies. The kind of movies I don't watch because I am practical.
I don't feel any sort of softening and I would not describe it as "melting."
I don't condescend to blush about it when some wise friend calls me on my bullshit.
Thursday, January 29, 2009
See, yesterday was a hectic day. I spent a lot of time working on reprinting and rebinding a bunch of reports for a very important client.
I know, every client is supposed to be very important.
But some very important clients are more important than others. That's just the way the world works, sweetie. I'm sorry to be the one to have to tell you this.
Anyway, I was working on these reports for a while, checking and double checking with my contact within that very important company--we'll call my contact, "Bill."
Because that's his name.
Because I kick seven kinds of ass and I'm really good at my job (alternate sentence: because I am a control freak and I cannot delegate work and the back of my neck starts to sweat at the idea of leaving details up to someone else because other people rarely live up to my unrealistic standards and frankly neither do I but that's between me and the drill sergeant that lives inside my skull--see why I went with the first option?), Bill wound up singing my praises to my boss. Which was cool. My boss mentioned it to me and joked that Bill wanted to take me to dinner.
Somehow what jumped out of my mouth was a deadpan reference to "taking one for the team" that I'm not exactly sure my boss understood as a joke. Instead of sticking around and explaining, I bolted back to the binding machine where I am safe and no one wonders about my crimes of moral turpitude.
Okay, I really just wanted to say "moral turpitude." I love those two words together.
On an unrelated note, my boobs were huge yesterday. As befits a streetwalking hussy with loose morals.
Huge boobs are the pot of gold at the end of my sullied rainbow.
And now you know the prostitute story.
The ankle is not a big deal. It's just a side effect of being active. It's totally fine for running. Yes, I skipped the tango practica last night, but that was just me being cautious, mostly about the icy streets.
Once I get moving, I'm fine. There's just a hitch in my getalong at first. Did I say that right?
I don't know why I can't sleep. I mean, I sleep eventually, but I never used to lie awake--did I? I don't remember lying awake for hours. I blame it on the not smoking. I curl up on my side and I do not press my hands against my sternum because there is the thought flitting at the corner of my eye that there might be a hole in my chest.
Isn't that the dumbest thing you've ever heard?
So I don't press my fists against my chest. I think there would only be room for one fist, with a bit of wiggle room. Two hands would not fit. But I am not poking around in that.
I sleep when I'm exhausted. Running is the only thing that seems to work. I don't know if I like running or if I dislike not running, but it adds up to the same thing. Walking doesn't cut it. Tango might. Dance is not as strenuous, of course, but it's intense and controlled and it has worked. But I need more experience with it before I can see the pattern and be sure.
I am having a hard time not telling people to shut the hell up. I am impatient and irritable and other people's idle conversation is making it hard for me to breathe with earbuds in and music turned up, which is a fifteen-year-old solution and I should really go take a walk or something.
I should really chill the fuck out.
Sometimes the sound of male voices in my office sounds like the drone of old machines and I would kick the safety bar if the fucking machines weren't so fucking old they come from a time before anybody gave a shit about the safety of factory workers.
And when you really break it down, I don't care about factory workers, either.
A woman keeps leaving messages on my voicemail. They're all in muffled Spanish and she sounds really upset. I feel bad for her, but she's calling from an unknown number, so I can't call her back to let her know she's got the wrong number.
Yeah, I'm gonna have to go take a walk. This is not working.
Monday, January 26, 2009
I turned it over in my head too many times.
I decided that Rilke might be right.
By my authority, however, everything difficult is not serious.
If everything difficult is serious, that make buttsex serious. And there is nothing serious about buttsex.
No, really. I'm serious. And difficult.
And spiteful get ready I'm sorry.
Also, in the spirit of not having any secrets, did I ever tell you about the time I got knocked up by my friend's boyfriend when I was sixteen and had a baby and gave him up for adoption?
I didn't? That's probably why you didn't see much of me that year. My mom was determined that I'd have my life back. She kept saying that. She offered to change my name. She offered to handle all the details.
I think she thought she was saving me.
She was disappointed in me, I think, when I asked to hold him.
I waited until I went to work and called the adoption attorney from my office. When I asked if I could schedule regular visits with him, she laughed. I cried hysterically in front of strangers.
My mom wasn't trying to hurt me. She was trying to help. She really, really loved me. I'm not even angry with her, most of the time.
But I'm tired of trying to remember who knows and who doesn't. So if you're a member of my family and you're reading this and you're shocked, I'm very sorry.
But it's not my fucking secret.
Now it's yours, too. Enjoy that.
Friday, January 23, 2009
The waitress brought more and all was right with the world.
I think of that afternoon-morning sometimes when I open tubs of creamer for my coffee. Years have passed and I still remember the light coming in from the street. Blinking sleepy in the sunlight until we found a booth, a place to hide.
There were other people around and we weren't going to last much longer as a couple, as a unit, but those things aren't important.
That morning-afternoon, the memory of it, really, is what I think of sometimes with the part of my brain that doesn't have to use any words. And that is why, even with my touch-me-not nature and your prickliness and our constant combat, that is why I sometimes hug you without thinking, with one arm as you are walking by.
I always meant to explain that to you.
(October 24, 2007)
Jess had told me all about everyone before I met them, but all I remember her saying about Tom was, "He's pretty." And I don't remember what I was doing, but I was in the living room at Nate's house when Tom stuck his head in from the kitchen and looked at me. I think I said, "You must be Tom." I think I shook his hand.
I was thinking about the day I met Tom, mulling it over and I wasn't sure why, when it occurred to me that my mother was still alive then. I had an almost uncontrollable urge to call Tom right then, past ten on a Sunday night. I thought about what I would say. I would tell him the story of the day I met him and I would tell him, "My mother was still alive then."
Then I realized I couldn't say those things out loud, because my voice would crack and break and he'd only hear me crying and sniffling and gasping for air. And he would ask if I'm okay and I'd try to reassure him that I was fine, really, just wanted to tell the story to someone who was there on that day when my mother was still alive.
But you understand why I couldn't do that.
(September 29, 2008)
Thursday, January 22, 2009
So, yeah, if you're getting a mix CD from me, "White Winter Hymnal" is going to be on it. Because I think it's the most adorable song I've ever heard and I've been listening to it over and over for two days and I think it might have been the soundtrack to a dream I had last night.
But you should remember, because you were there.
So I'm doing all these things that are supposed to feed the soul and I'm not sure I really have one.
A soul, I mean.
I'm pretty sure I sold it a long time ago, for like, a piece of gum or something.
That can't be true. Can it?
I get up at 5:15 for thirty minutes, three pages of free association writing that feels like the most ridiculous thing I have ever done in my whole life and it's maybe very important. I haven't decided. I just keep doing it.
Then I go do yoga, because I can put my hands here and I can put my feet there and I can curl my toes into the mat and raise up and find a point to focus on so I don't fall over and I can breathe and open my chest, soft eyes, soft throat, because it's torture until it tips over and then it's unbelievable, seriously, you wouldn't believe me if I told you. So I won't.
I learned that I'd rather listen to traffic than music sometimes. Running taught me that. Running. I still want to put air quotes around that when I say it out loud. No, it's really running. A running running running. Check out my little shoes. Little compared to canoes.And then there's tango, which is a whole new animal. And there's Jess in the car almost yelling when she says, "I don't know where you got the idea that you're not good at things. You're better than most people." And I am laughing and scoffing because I will not cry.
I learned that I lack inner resources. Vogue magazine taught me that.
I learned that I'd have a bone to pick with your God if he existed. A week in the forest of peace taught me that. I had no idea I was so pissed off. Angry at the idea of something that MIGHT exist.
And I don't believe he does.
But he might.
And if he does, he's probably pissed, but I don't understand it if it doesn't have some violence in it and that might be part of my problem.
Gentleness makes no sense to me.
So I provoke provoke provoke and I'm only half playing when I play dumb because I'm not really sure what I'm messing with. I'm that kind of dumb, an emotional child--
and I don't say that affectionately. I mean it developmentally.
--and I am tired of distracting myself with the next shiny thing, which is probably you or you or him or maybe you again.
I'm sorry. I talk to people and things like they are the same.
It doesn't mean I don't love you.
Tuesday, January 20, 2009
I'm not here to make art. I apologize if you're here to see art. That's only going to happen by accident. Like everything else I do, this is going to happen too fast for all the wrong reasons.
It's going to be great.
Monday, January 19, 2009
Honestly, it was a lot of fun. It was a showcase of my dazzling clumsiness, but it also showed off the nearly endless patience of the instructors and even the other students. I needed the patience, and I greatly appreciate it.
I learned, in that very first class, some things about myself.
- I change my weight for no apparent reason, even when I did not intend to change my weight.
- Pivoting in sneakers is not easy.
- The simple social act of dancing can be terrifying.
- Being forced to look someone full in the face in such close quarters is also terrifying.
- My inner and outer selves are rarely in the same room. The mirror was a constant source of surprise.
I also learned that I have trouble not flinching when someone steps into my "personal space."
I'm sure people noticed. I'm not a very good actress. I'm sure my discomfort was clear, and I would not be surprised to learn that I did actually flinch.
I did not cry or run screaming.
I stayed for the whole class. I paid attention. I focused. So I'm counting the whole thing as a win.