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BY maggie

10/01 Direct Link
she walked into the room uninvited, bewildered stares met her at the first step. eyes grew so fierce she almost tripped. composure…she always had a way with her social superiors. little did she know they would not allow her to walk away from the crime she committed, not over their own emotionally dead carcasses. not giving them more credit was her first mistake; trusting their overly-polite civility was her second.

within minutes, she was shredded, like an old credit card receipt by a paranoid agoraphobic schizophrenic conspiracy theorist. i half-expected her powdered wig to spring to life, until it didn’t.
10/02 Direct Link
waking, dreaming. she sets the alarm, and still, nothing. 'don’t get up, you have nothing to look forward to today'. she listens, trusts her instincts. five years from now, she’ll suddenly wonder why she’s spent so long in bed and then just as suddenly not care again, and that, dear friends, is sadness.

she’ll turn on the news and wonder when the climate changed, when the U.S. elected an independent president, and when a licenses to drive became obsolete, because she can see her car from her window which is right next to her bed, and it still looks new.
10/03 Direct Link
'When she did finally fall asleep it was the restless sleep of the night watchman continuously aware of danger and of the treacheries of time seeking to cheat her by permitting clocks to strike the passing hours when she was not awake to grasp their contents'.

she jumps out of bed as the phone rings and looks beside her…nothing. no one. all of that worry, all of that struggling between the sheets for nothing. she can remember vividly the last time another body slept here.

she gets up and unlocks the door to her bedroom. no sense in wasting time.
10/04 Direct Link
what do i want? why is everyone so concerned with what i do? does it matter if i decide to be one thing, which ends up disappointing? as long as i don’t let myself down, why should it get under my skin? can i not be more than one? is this a rule i never learned? why must i answer the questions of all, my own inquiries going unanswered in the meantime? how do i train myself to wait? is my mind trained to worry itself awake? how did it get so late? is making the bed a necessity? hello?
10/05 Direct Link
a chill in my bones so deep, my leg hair stands on end. why do i sweat in my sleep and wake a frostbitten teeth-chatterer? it's all a good test for the new Jergen's shave minimizing lotion, i do suppose.

a strange night, a bitter morning. hate this limbo-in-limbo feeling. jumped in the shower, hoping for inspiration and still nothing. this most definitely is not in the syllabus. inspiration, fickle traveler, is on sabbatical again, making room for the acquisition of all things new.

this ‘next gen on tnn’ thing is going to my head. ‘make it so, numbah one’.
10/06 Direct Link
ouch, ouch, a hundred times ouch. i think i am having trouble remembering the events of last night. ‘did i actually say, do, drink that?' yes, you did. and i didn't even recognize the reflection of that girl in the mirrors of the bar. a sign i am comfortable in my new surroundings, free to be me, as much as it scares those who least expect it. it's freezing and my hungover nose is running.

effeminate men really do something for me. it’s difficult to be intimidated by a man armed with expensive shampoo and more manicured fingernails than mine.
10/07 Direct Link
how is it that one can be distantly feeling the results of a hangover immediately following waking from the night of fruitful drinking and feeling it in nearly-full force closer to bedtime the following evening? quite possibly the present visiting company is making it difficult to motivate oneself to feel better for a night on the town. was hoping to wake up to a stellar friday morning, no plasticized houseguest in tow and a clear weekend toward which to look forward. a stellar quote: ‘it's approximately 4:43, i'm hearing sirens instead of rain, and your friend is in my bathroom'.
10/08 Direct Link
it's over. the most dreadfully random weekend i've ever known. no more weird guy sleeping on my sheets. no more strange man dirtying my towels. no more idiot linking nonsensical words with one another in an attempt at painful conversation. no more laughing on the inside, or trying to hide it in the backseat. no more desiring to throttle this older by a year man with my smarter than thou hands. no way he went to carnegie mellon, unless he paid them off.

back to soul-seeking, job-searching, and sound-sleeping. having my bathroom to myself never seemed like such a treat.
10/09 Direct Link
a dream that someone's cell phone turned up in my home. the owner, a new friday night friend with silky hands who didn't know my name. invited me to a party at his home, turned him down for various reasons, making them up as i went along.

knowing it’s colder inside than out, still trying to push myself awake. confusion setting in about what day it really is. out of the shower, legs three quarters of the way freshly shaven, i wonder how the exam will go. how tomorrow will be. i wonder at the marvel of this new lotion.
10/10 Direct Link
i am not allowed to watch "The View' anymore. it is decidedly so. i'm not interested in high-fashion rip-off looks at a super-low price. the fashion industry is an off-colour joke; it exists not for the purposes of making the latest look more affordable for the masses. let the filthy rich look ridiculous and horrid, if they so desire. i'm not interested in the opinions of five women when i have my own. the show's premise makes me want to slit my wrists during commercial. i'm willing to bet that Lisa Ling hasn't ever lived on Ramen noodles and water.
10/11 Direct Link
writing exams. insurance salespeople. renewal commissions. elevators and average looking men. multi-level parking garages. aggressive responses. outdated fax machines. invitations to out-of-state birthday parties. sending resumes to people who won't even open the envelope. notifications of account balances. at times like this, credit card companies don't put their respective late-fee policies on hold? all newsworthy events of thursday, and likewise, all those not so newsworthy, come to me. if you don't want me to ‘let terrorism win', don't report information released to incite the masses. if nothing is happing, say ‘nothing is happening'. please, let me get on with it.
10/12 Direct Link
my waking hour.
i thought it was saturday.
one day ahead of myself.
dreamed about my dog.
again.

aunt is in an out-of-state hospital, having out-of-state surgery.
now the media is up in arms.
anthrax here, anthrax there.
the envelopes from yesterday,
sent seemingly unsolicited,
may go unopened for some time
and leave me as jobless today as yesterday.
everyone should have an email address.
enough already.
we all know from last night’s address
the administration is hardened.
don’t tell me not to worry, and then emphasize
all of the reasons why you are doing so,
in an alphabetical list.
10/13 Direct Link
where is the month going? to pancakes over the morning paper? to asking people i don't even know for a chance to prove myself worthy of employment? to not knowing any friends on my own and being too afraid to try? i walk the line of living by default. whatever happened to being my own independent person? it seems i'll never know. i get myself down and dirty, only to be told to lie in my bed.

i wish for the day when singers of country music didn’t paint pop songs with a tainted twang, for jobs at lemonade stands.
10/14 Direct Link
one year ago today you walked out of me a faint smile on your face an actor who can't make himself cry after delivering a response stills in my ears ‘having sex with someone i don't love makes me hate myself and that makes me hate you' patiently waiting for the perfect moment i could see your face plan it as you slid on top of me an hour before 'get the fuck out' unbeknownst to me back to the room where you hid the girlfriend and strategy guide for hunting unsuspecting victims i wonder will you write about this
10/15 Direct Link
another monday morning. can't seem to shake the aches from yesterday, or the well-deserved mental and verbal abuse of myself. so many things to do and finding a job isn't one of them. how can i be pressed for time when i have nothing to consume it? this isn't what a major life change is supposed to feel like. yesterday, a bad day still; the year-old taste remains in my mouth. one year and fornication free. my chest still sore from puking so much so hard. with october half-spent i am three-fourths anxious. four hundred thirty-seven dollars to my name.
10/16 Direct Link
october 16, my valentine’s day of the fall. think i’ll stay inside and wait for things to happen rather than go looking for trouble. these three days of mid-october should be erased from desktop calendars, weekly planners, time sheets, and palm pilots worldwide.

it doesn’t seem so bad, but i know better than that. kind of like when i start the shower and it seems too warm, but i know once i get in, it will be colder. tomorrow may make up for it, but doubtful. having a positive outlook was easier when i knew for certain i could spell.
10/17 Direct Link
it’s over! huzzah! the ides of mid-october are passed! funny. i don’t feel happier.

sadly, i can’t invent a reason to. amazingly, i have yet to be surprised by anyone thus far. undoubtedly i am not getting enough alone time. shamefully, i’ve been sleeping in too much. deservedly, no one wants to pay me for anything.

i love it when old friends surprise me. just when i think they’ve had enough of my antics, up they turn and make my day. but i shall wait and see how tomorrow goes. dreams of not being so uptight. maybe it’s just me.
10/18 Direct Link
kicking her own ass she waits for someone else to start caring while pretending she doesn’t need him to do so tired of waiting for her to come around, he says ‘i’ll take out the trash’ and does he’s gone for fifty minutes more than is required to make the trip to the dumpster on foot that’s fifty minutes she has to sit alone to watch the news on television worry about who life will consume next time around the track and trace the pattern of her own foot’s imprint on the couch under her body she can’t stop crying.
10/19 Direct Link
he sits in the corner booth staring into the depths of his ninety-nine cent coffee. this is what the antithesis of inspiration feels like. good to the last drip, drip, drip, and we don’t mean the coffee. he asks Estelle to ‘fill ‘er up’ again, and she takes his mug back to the bottomless cesspool, too tired and haggard to notice she’s replaced his regular drug of choice with decaf. and we don’t mean the coffee. she drags her feet back to the corner booth, her eyes burning through the smoke. wham bam, thank you ma’am’. and again, he stares.
10/20 Direct Link
writing is about making decisions. words of wisdom from a teenage drama, to be announced at a later date, time and place. riddle me this, batman. how did one of the world’s most indecisive people end up with even a smidgen of talent for writing? maybe this is the point to life, this dithering damsel’s life to be specific: to overcome the challenge that is decision-making; to not exhaust herself trying to decide which scent of soap to buy for the guest bathroom; to keep melodramatic analysis to a minimal level; to not seek words of wisdom from television characters.
10/21 Direct Link
a conversation, self-to-self:

i think i love someone.
is this good?
i’m not sure. do you think?
of course i think. do you?
yes, but i mean, do you think it’s good for me to love someone?
why not?
me.
and i repeat, why not?
do you even know me?
i am you.
it hurts.
it always does.
then why is it good?
lots of good things hurt.
name one.
hush.
why?
i’m thinking.
you shouldn’t have to.
tattoos.
what?
tattoos are good, but they hurt.
are you high?
you’re the one with the tattoos.
and you’re one to talk.
10/22 Direct Link
talk to me, tell me what you’re thinking. i can’t seem to do anything but choke on words. not being homesick is making me sick with myself. started to have dreams about my family. shouldn’t have eaten at eleven last night. why are things not the way i want them to be? why hasn’t my hair grown out? why is it thinning? why am i not thinning? where is this new and improved state of being? who am i? why am i here? movies mess with my head, make me believe i’m missing something, that i am losing my mind.
10/23 Direct Link
a twenty-third day of a twenty-third year,times like these make me wonder where i’ll be when i wake up somewhere in five. imagine a woman, approaching thirty, pen in hand, waiting for a train mindlessly twirling a strand of long wavy hair, pulled from the stack on top of her head. clumsily tousled, with a sensually-tainted appeal. she’s not yet comfortable in her own grace and wonders why people stare. alone with her pen, thoughts and sounds from urban civilization, she arms herself with a pea coat, hears the hot rush of wind before shivering and knows it’s near.
10/24 Direct Link
i’ve been bad. can’t seem to think clearly; he says this with a straight face. knowing what i do, why does it seem that all should be well? i should know better, and shouldn’t count on him to initiate it all. i don’t know where i’m coming from. he doesn’t know because he’s never been there and refuses to buy himself a ticket. fear of flying; dreaded automobiles. walking would make the journey too long and exhaustive. by the time he arrived, he will have forgotten all he seeks to find and will turn around, the sun in his eyes.
10/25 Direct Link
i trust twenty-five a constant reminder of quarters and time of mathematics and fractions of being young and multiplying it by three.

much like ten safety in numbers dreaming about them most never recall for fear that the number will signify a second coming of sorts.

midweek and already it’s over washing my hands i felt like i would crack under the chilly water if i jumped in head first which is what i seem to do best even though i can’t admit it.

grammar never makes any sense if used incorrectly but make sense just as infrequently when proper.
10/26 Direct Link
the end of the month approaches. i should have seen it coming. a month of confusion, procrastination, and irrational behavior. some might say ‘it’s about time’, but most would agree that i’m off my rocker, trying too hard to be selfish. have nothing worth saying and yet feel compelled to say something. anything. suggestions will be taken at the door on your way out in a shoe box with a hole cut out of the top, so that this whole process remains anonymous. please note: handwriting analysis and DNA testing will be conducted on forms containing negative feedback. end note.
10/27 Direct Link
turn off the lights, pretend i’m not here,
because i’m not really anywhere
when i am.
you speak. i don’t start listening
until i hear the echo of the words
from the beginning of your sentence.
tell me again why the hero always wins?
i never remember the punch line.
tag, you’re it. i found you out,
so let me in. the game is won.
now win me over all over again.
good lines in song are what i live for.
showering in darkness inspires me,
but only when i don’t expect to be inspired,
which is to say,
never.
10/28 Direct Link
lazy nights and games at play. Trivial Pursuit has nothing on me. I’m all over that like Stratego without the pieces. movies and table hunting. they don’t know what they are missing. was i mistaken to assume that he might understand it? was i wrong to value the as-is friendship? stick a fork in me, i’m done dancing around this bonfire of fireworks in the snow. i’m ready to run inside and slip on the hardwood floor, crack my tailbone and cackle until i cry. i miss that kind of absurd silliness serving no purpose other than making people laugh.
10/29 Direct Link
a fortune reads: girl who forget must remember eventually. she’s out of practice, out of mind. she wonders when things will change by themselves, if left alone. things happen for all kinds of reasons, not because one person wants them to. the cosmos don’t care if Jane hates her job, and gypsies don’t care if she can’t sing. she wonders why she’s wasting her time reading fortunes in a dismal converted Western Sizzlin’. when the food isn’t genuine, how can the sentiment be? the stars don’t align over cheap rice and lo mien. she eyeballs the cookie and walks away.
10/30 Direct Link
just woke up from a place where i got bit on the neck. nuzzled at first, and then pierced by sharp teeth. according to a new and improved source, i am afraid to take a risk on anyone and am being forced to deal with matters left untouched for some time. trying to tell myself that i need to let go of everything, while trusting my instincts at the same time. kind of like telling someone to light a candle without lighting the match first, like asking for the impossible but expecting it to happen. look ma, no hands. splat.
10/31 Direct Link
warning: may cause giddy behavior and interfere with effects of typical motivation in some individuals if taken in large doses. they should put that on the side of your package. are waking hours the same as hours in which one’s head is full of groggy steam? hopefully, for me. otherwise, i’ve just botched the batch. i’m still wondering where it all came from. oh, look! another butterfly, right there in my stomach. haven’t seen or felt one of those in a while. i would say it was part of my grand master plan, but then i would be a liar.