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So tired. "I'm sooo-ooooo-ooo tired...I haven't slept a wink..."
I didn't win the fiction contest I wanted to win. I stayed up to work on a story for something else. Since I didn't win Contest #1, I hacked off some bits from that story and grafted it onto the story for Contest #2 (both have similar themes). Had to do laundry. There were somehow two sets of wet clothes ahead of me waiting for the dryer. Made my fella stay up and babysit the clothes. He got mad ‘cuz the guy in my story was in better shape than him.
I wanna work from home so bad. More and more I'm acting like a Diva with a Day Job, one that eventually needs to be jettisoned like whatever gets jettisoned off a rocket to make it move faster and higher.
I'm probably not really acting like a diva. Shy, intense people think that if they just feel something really, really hard, that everyone knows it. Like you're a book people can read at a glance without picking it up and turning the pages. Like you're transparent. It's just that you burn so hot and bright you figure your cover's melted.
"The only boy who could ever please me…was the son of a preacher man…"
Do you ever wish you had your own theme song? Not just pick a song and say "that's my theme song!" but actually have it play in the background when you walk down the street or do something dramatic? Maybe with KA-POW! title sequences edited in for effect... Or do you just wish you had more theme song-worthy moments?
What if you get tired of your chosen theme song? Could you grab the notes, toss them aside, and climb out of the sheet music? Whee, baby…
Brian Douglas Wells, a Pennsylvania pizza deliveryman, died because the bomb strapped to his neck exploded (it was placed there by ne'er-do-wells who ordered him to rob a bank).
Linda Payne, who owns the property where Wells lived, described him as a private, trustworthy person who liked music and cared for three cats. Eesh. If I don't get married or have kids, will my obituary be that bleak? Gotta stop sprinkling charms to ward off evil and start filling the canvas with something…
Happy birthday to you know who. He's 36 and has an all-region DVD player in his future.
In the hokey-pokey you don't always put your whole self in, sometimes just your right arm or your knee.
Your problem is you put your whole body, your whole self into every little problem when sometimes just your right ear can handle the situation quite swimmingly. It's called micromanaging and it's why you burn out of energy so fast. You don't need to hassle the whole zoo to treat the monkey's cold.
And anticipating how awkward you'll feel at some event weeks beforehand is like rolling around in shit, then saying "why do I smell?" You know you deserve better.
I yearn for the days when writers could be as eccentric and anti-social as they wanted to be and everyone would fawn over them, like "wow, she's such a genius…" Hot undergrads would prize stolen cocktail glasses with my lipstick imprint. The glass would then be a kind of hipster's Holy Grail, source of late night end of the party stories and later a prominent fixture on the mantelpiece of their "big boy" home.
Maybe this kind of writer still does exist and I'm just shit outta luck being Midwestern and middle class and thoroughly average to the untrained eye.
Ah, the country air was so sweet. "I know, and I believe, that country air is the only air…that's FIT TO BREATHE…"
Time really did seem to slow down. In a good way. Attention to each thing was heightened and loving, like Zen meditation.
Then of course we had to rush back to the city at the crack of dawn Sunday so certain someone #1 could meet up with certain someone #2. I know better than to deal with someone #1 when he's got a temper on. I just don't think someone #2 would exert the same effort, you know?
Do you ever think, when crossing the street, "if it were only me crossing the street the driver could hit me with impunity. But since there's a lady with a baby carriage ALSO crossing the street I guess I'm OK and won't get hit today"?
Self esteem issues? Nooooooo… At least I never started a zine called "The Lucky Ones Died."
Is it possible that something can make you laugh and you don't laugh at it OR with it? Is there another choice? Like the nerd in "American Splendor." I'm not laughing WITH him…can you laugh AT something with affection?
Are there ever relationships that are truly equal? Must be rare.
Usually you're the one who cares more or the one who cares less and that's that.
You're the one just barely holding on or you're the cocky, confident one poppin' wheelies, jumping up and spinning the thing around underneath you, confident your seat will meet your ass when you fall back down. You're the smart kid bored in the "average" class. You're the one who just has to tempt fate, just has to pick at the scab. You're the one measuring the hemoglobin and hematocrit, not the one bleeding.
Is it really PMS or do I always feel sad and alone? Sometimes it lessens but it never leaves. To get by I rearrange the window dressing so you don't notice it or I ignore it and trudge ahead anyway.
Did you see "The Straight Story"? Remember when the guy tells that kid "hold that stick and try to break it. Easy, right? Now hold ten sticks together and try to break ‘em. Can't do it, right? You know what that is? That's family. You can't tear that apart."
Reassurance doesn't work. I can have fun but I'm never content.
Two years ago today, terrorists took down the World Trade Center and hit the Pentagon and Pennsylvania. Somebody said there was also a terrorist attack in Chile; I didn't know.
I was having this discussion about why some people feel queasy about all the American flags everywhere. This charming woman said "I'm from Brazil and the Brazilian flag makes me swell with pride; why would Americans not feel the same?" I said it's kinda like how you can be proud to be from the West Side of Chicago in a way you just can't if you were whelped in Winnetka.
I was asked last night why I don't really wanna have kids. Um…how to put it in an easily digestible way that won't make me look like a raving lunatic? Fuck it; I was drunk when asked so I was probably honest. I'm a very sad, alienated person. If were to create a life to emulate my own, what would I be signing that person up for?
Is this why writers are fucked up? Who else uses the same words to say "I'm fucked up beyond repair" and "this is why you should love me"? And mean both equally, simultaneously?
I can't believe Johnny Cash died. "The man in black is now wearing white." Wow. It's like a hole's been shot outta me.
I'm not really sure why, but this is one of the few celebrity deaths that's really choked me up. He was just so fucking cool. He cut such a Dad-like figure. Such a solid presence. It's like the floor's less steady under your feet.
I have two Johnny Cash CD's, so I like him, but more in an eclectic little hipster girl way than a Hardcore Fan way. I guess it's just some weird Electra complex thing.
"Hey hey hey, all you girls in these industrial towns…"
Outside Hooty's in Baraboo, Wisconsin, some local yokel says "I pissed on your Jeep – but that's OK." Our friend the Jeep owner walks toward him like "'scuse me, bitch?" but he walks away. Maybe he thought our friend was looking at him as if he pissed on his Jeep but really didn't, so was all "fuck off, city boy…"
On the drive back home we see what we think is Calvin standing in the shadow of a cross and peeing on it but he's really kneeling down and praying. Perplexing.
God, is that all that I can say to people anymore, to detail how neurotic and unhappy I am? To draw a roadmap of my psyche and give the length and width and depth of all the obstacles in my way?
Is this Emotional Detention for years spent pretending I had no feelings? Am I just knee-deep in busywork, attending to the piles of unsorted issues that have been accumulating on my desk?
I don't know, but I'm sick of it. I'm sick of myself. Am I just too unwilling to trust anything I haven't poked and prodded to death?
My astro.com horoscope today:
"The increased pace of the introduction of new ideas, new adventures, and new gadgets may have your head whirling, MissThing. Be careful of letting yourself get too overwhelmed by what is going on around you. Take things one step at a time. If you try to jump on a train that is whizzing through the station at breakneck speed, you are apt to hurt yourself. Accept the fact that you can catch the train when it stops right at the spot you are standing. It will."
I never believe the train will stop where I'm standing…
So, if I want attention when I'm sad, should I just say "hey, shower me with love and tell me I'm great ‘cuz I'm sad?" Instead of writing pretentious poems, hoping people will get the hint? What did I say today? "I feel like I'm covered with a tarp of snot. I try to lift my arms and hammer through but no…John Henry is crippled."
I'm embarrassed to ask for help so I drop really oblique hints. And then people don't get it and I get mad. And embarrassed to need it in the first place, so the flogging begins…
I know why Johnny Cash was so badass. Well, many reasons, but I've only got 100 words. A line from the Time cover story this week said "the Christian and the criminal brawled inside him." Another was "he made patriarchal integrity cool." Like a hip Hank Hill – what more could you want? A solid, dependable guy who'll get drunk with you and analyze horoscopes with you all night at Denny's.
OK, maybe I'm projecting. What else am I gonna do on my lunch hour? What else but project a window out of here, even if it's only silly Viewfinder stills?
Saw the Circus World Museum guy on the train again, only he didn't have his Circus World Museum gear with him. He has a bunch of maps of San Francisco and the BART system that he places on his window ledge like a little altar. Or pictures of family at his work desk. Like they're there for comfort, to define his "space." I guess the maps wouldn't be that strange if he were IN San Francisco instead of on a Chicago train bound for Aurora.
A chick on a cell phone behind me says "someone put salami on my car."
100words.com member Christine wrote, in regards to writing, "the really ‘good' stuff comes from…revisiting…whatever is inside you that hurts…and the really good, prolific writers can articulate all that into something that everyone understands and can relate to."
I'd like to think I can do that. I recently wrote in an e-mail to a friend "I guess I expect people to be fascinated by my misery, like there's beauty in my sadness like a Smiths song, or like I'm fucking Nico or something." My nails get sooty when I dig in my psyche; at least I have a sense of humor.
I saw the e-mails with my sister's wedding pictures and I think it's time for Weight Watchers again. It had been nagging at the back of my mind like that one cartoon where Daffy Duck keeps dodging the draft officer. He keeps saying "I've finally lost him! I'm finally free!" And then this nerdy guy with a bowler hat floating above his head keeps showing up at his door saying "weeeeeeellll, now, I…wouldn't…say…THAAAAAAT…"
When I decide I really want something I can be quite determined. This is one of those times; I better hop on before the train pulls away.
I did lose weight on Weight Watchers before but put most of it back on (maybe more…hope not). I kept it off for a good year or so. I think I gained it back because the way I did it was very high maintenance. Lots of individually wrapped low fat and vegetarian stuff. Lots and lots of trips to the grocery store. When I started I had a roommate. Then I had my own place and my rent payments doubled. I was like "well, I can't do it 100% so I'll just, like, not care then…" I resented the huge expense.
If my boss ever sees me type something in Word she'll ask if the Paragraph feature that shows the paragraph stops and spaces between words bugs me. Actually it doesn't. But I just say "oh…yeah" and click off the paragraph feature. I don't feel strongly one way or the other… Do you ever feel so apathetic you're not even sure how you feel? I tiptoe around my boredom like a corpse that I'm so used to not acknowledging I can look at it like writing on the wall that doesn't mean anything anymore… Tired of making lemonade out of lemons…
The lion stepped in paint that spilled off a Thybony truck (why was the paint truck on safari? Mid life crisis…don't ask…).
The lion's tracks were everywhere; instinct burns deep in those born to hide, and so his prey eluded him. The jungle was covered in rainbow pawprints like the Skittles rainbow of fruit flavors.
The lion's prey stepped in the footprints and took on the lion's scent. So everybody in the jungle was friends now. But everyone starved because the food chain's links had dissolved and everyone was a big DNA puddle with no differentiation. But man, the parties…
"And you look so pretty in your new lace sleeves…" I love moments of quiet truth and ambiguous relationships. Or movies about them. So I thought I would love "Lost in Translation." I don't see what the big deal is. I mean, it was good. But everyone's just creaming their jeans over how great it is… I kept sitting there like "OK, so what can you tell me that I couldn't figure out from the previews or the movie poster?" You'd think a conversation-centered movie would have much deeper conversations. And what was up with not even trying to speak Japanese?
The scale said I lost four pounds this week! My friend said "it's easy once you get over the emotional part of it." Can this be said of most of life? I read this quote in a book "the thing that eats heart is mostly heart." Is this why lots of intellectually inclined people are attracted to being Vulcan type characters? Whose logic is so tight you can bounce a quarter off it?
Yet one of my favorite lines from a Nina Simone song is "why can't you see it? Why can't you feel it? I don't know…I don't know…"
No one will ever accuse me of being a Vulcan. I might make them spin their mind like a Rolodex, trying to remember a shrink's name, find a verbal business card to toss my way so they can take their leave, having done their good deed.
That's not true, either, ‘cuz I keep my shit pretty hidden for the most part. Maybe people
accuse me of being a Vulcan, for that reason. Just ‘cuz emotions aren't displayed, they think they're not there. Can't see it so it doesn't exist, even though you breathe it in the air around me.
I bought the first Soul Coughing CD at a garage sale (they semi-jokingly called it an "estate sale" because you walked in the apartment to see the stuff).
I couldn't help but think of how much happier I was in 1994, the year it came out. Of course, I was probably just as, if not
, neurotic than now. But all the ol' ticker sees is "damn, I miss that Blammo bubble gum T-shirt with the kid blowing a big bubble right around my boobs and how frisky I looked at my 22nd birthday party." Bittersweet, like finding old poems…
If the auto-reply (though still very appreciated) e-mail is true, I'll find out today or tomorrow if I get into this anthology. Shake me up like a snow globe and watch the little kid night before Christmas anticipation.
Though that might be dangerous thinking; you can only lie to the kid about Santa coming to town so many times before she gets hard and mean, starts swearing at you and smoking on the corner with dead-eyed kids who roll Marlboros up in their sleeves.
Do you have to willingly hand your heart over to the axe-wielder for it to grow?
These 100words.com entries tend to be intensely personal, like I'm passing my spleen around the classroom for kids to throw at each other, wear as a hat or just squish, to pretend to gross each other out as they sate their curiosity.
Or they're so impersonal they're kinda flip, like "ha ha, I'm just pulling this out o' my ass, aren't I so clever?" Is there a middle ground? To meet the world and engage on equal terms without pretending you don't have a heart?
Well, I'm dreamin' of eatin' my second meal today, with five more words to go…
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