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Thursday, December 30, 2004

sex therapy & a place to crash

i just spent a few nights in Manhattan. i went down with this guy that's completely likeable but also completely unavailable. i wish he was miserable company.

the premise was that we'd stay at his sister's and see these two concerts. he said she'd be away skiing, but that wasn't the case. i was only planning on staying for one, but getting drunk in Chelsea with a hot guy is more fun than i thought it'd be. so i bought in for another round.

and this, despite the embarrassing fucking moments that transpired.

his sister has a really cute place, but it's small. kind of like a hallway that passes for an apartment because there are some utilities lining the walls and a bathroom at the end of the tunnel. her bed is in her living room and you kind of have to climb onto it via the couch. that was probably the most annoying aspect of the place. even moreso than the retarded neighbors that were clueless as to how to enter their own apartment or the constant heat that made for smelly bodies in the morning.

the first night we were there, we came back from the concert wreaking of marijuana. i think i had a contact high because when his sister pointed out this fact, i kind of got paranoid.

little did i know that my boy had previously asked his sister to politely get the fuck out of her own apartment so that we could sleep in her shoebox. so she put her puffy coat on over her PJs and grabbed a pillow to head to her gay friend's apartment for the night.

but before she left, she made some comments about our sexual activity. i'm not sure what they are, but my boy was laughing and blushing. and i was grateful that i couldn't hear them.

then she shuts the door and says, "oh you know what i have?!" i cringed, thinking she was going to whip out some condoms. later, my boy revealed that he had a similar expectation, thinking she was going to reveal some lube.

ha, even better.

it was flavored powder.

she put it on his arm. "lick it!"

he had to. she was persistant. i probably would've licked it too. "it tastes like vanilla!" she insisted.

"no, it tastes like powder." he was still laughing.

all i could do was cringe in the corner. i felt about 17.

i left her a bottle of wine with a little note. an expensive bottle, or tasteful, i think, by my standards. i hope that's an appropriate "thanks" for some sexual therapy and a place to crash.

remind me tell you about his cartoon moment later. it involves a pillow, a naked ass, and a screaming sister. and of course me, laughing.

Friday, December 24, 2004


This tree is wanting to wake from its slumber,
a brief wind of warmth comes and buds form,
they begin to grow and flower,
but winter is about to set in,
snow will fall tonght and stop the blooming.
I guess I saw this and was touched because I saw this tree as a mirror to myself.
It's amazing what sweetness and a tenderheart can do, it can be a warm breeze in the winter, a gentle rain in a drought... a sheltering sky over head.

i was explaining to an equally cynical friend the other night my theory of life. it's not pretty and it's not profound. in fact, i'm just realizing now that it's quite immature. and i'm happy to have figured that out.

my theory was adolescent. life is bad. life makes you cry. you are surrounded by fools and selfish people that just overwhelm the day with clouds. but what made my theory so excellent, i thought, was that it didn't really matter. that there would always be some kind of nagging feeling that you're not living your life to the fullest, regardless of which decision you've made. in other words, you'd always be unsure or at least slightly unhappy with your position, so why bother really worrying. you'll just never know. yeah, genius, kiddo.

it's a stupid, horrible theory. but it makes me so fucking happy to be reminded that i still have so much left to learn from this world. and the people in it.

Monday, December 20, 2004

exhibit A

so, i'm quitting smoking.

another habit of mine is shopping. my current logic is that at least shopping won't literally kill me; shopping merely ruins most plans for a happy, comfortable future.

so i went shopping with my impromptu trek to the mall in the first freezing cold day of the season. you know...the day that your boogers freeze as soon as you walk out the door and you have to resist pinching your nostrils to defrost them. oh, and the day you realize that you really should use that -30 degree windshield washer fluid all year long just so that on a day like today, when you're going 80 down the highway, you can actually clean all that white salty grime off your windshield. i should probably get some winter blades too.

so we get to the mall so my mother can buy some jewelry for our poor relatives in florida, and i end up spending about $250 on myself. oh, and $40 on a co-worker. but i probably could've better spent that forty bucks. though, it kind of goes along with this inside joke that her and i have, so, whatever. she'll like it.

sometimes i'll try to talk myself out of buying clothes. that is, when i'm not trying to break the nicotene fits. i'll look at the cute clothes and realize that i am not actually picturing them on me. i think what i am picturing is someone that much more closely resembles Angelina Jolie, or even that girl that works down in the main office at work. ultimately, i'll conclude that what really will look hot is if i get my ass in shape; not this fucking kickass denim jacket with those killer fucking buttons.

after the ridiculously selfish time at Ann Taylor Loft (i'm really not a yuppie...even though i have an SUV and a cute dog that i named after a classic rock band...i have tattoos! and piercings!) i went to get some lattes while my mother made a pit-stop at the chain store bathroom. i was surprised to be the only one at the joint, and was initially pleased that i wouldn't have to wait fifty years for my overpriced drinks. my jubilee quickly turned to dismay when i saw that there were three men behind the counter. two were cleaning very diligently--fine. but the third. god, the third--middle aged, awkward facial hair, clumsy green apron. he was singing. singing My Favorite Things. he wasn't simply humming, nor was he embarrassed into laughter or silence when i approached the counter. instead, he continued bouncing toward, then away, from me, flailing an arm here or there, eventually working his way back the order counter. he approached with overzealous flair and belted out his final verse, altered a bit to accommodate a mention of his bewildered, solitary customer and her desire for coffee in a mall at christmastime.

i'm not sure if i've felt more uncomfortable in such a capitalistic situation. to make it worse, i saw one of the two cleaners shoot a dirty look to the other as the leader finished his solo.

i ordered, then stepped aside very quickly, avoiding much eye contact. i knew that any kind of eye contact would hint that you may tolerate his spiel on that cutesy gift set on the shelf or how scrumptious it is to have that little sprinkle of cocoa on your cappucino. like anyone can even taste that fucking shit!!

so anyway...

i'm still standing there alone when he gives me the two orders, but he'd screwed up one of them. my mother's. do i confront this jolly baffoon? do i make him look even more ridiculous than he already does? nope. i say thank you and walk swiftly to meet my mom, the foam of my latte oozing out of my travel lid. i spot my her as i descend on the escalator and she waves meekly. i hand her the drink, explaining that they only had hot chai, not cold. must be a seasonal thing.

i'm such a shit.

Monday, December 13, 2004


dinner time is always a rip-roarin' hoot of a time at my house.

tonight, my mother casually dropped into conversation the fact that my brother is taking sleeping pills on a regular basis. i immediately jumped on that one and now, according to me, he is a full-blown junkie. plus he was drinking some kind of ecto-cooler green gatorade with his stroganoff; that totally seals the deal.

my mother attempted to be serious, but she's menopausal and prone to mood swings. i had her laughing fairly quickly. and my father, well...he never takes anything seriously. except for the Giants maybe.

it all started when she mentioned that he must have been sleep walking last night because she heard him eating cereal. no, in fact he was not sleep walking it turns out. he was just hungry for some Fruit Loops at 4am. i make some snide comments and make myself laugh, my dad smirk and my brother grimmace. my mother continues her diagnosis and consultation. evidently, waking up several times a night are side-effects of this sleeping pill. the irony is so vast that i ignore it and wait for a better time to pounce.

she suggests staying up for twenty-four hours straight and not going to bed until the following evening. he explains that he's done this already and it was not effective. she concedes that it did not work for her either, but thought she'd throw it out there nonetheless. her concession is so swift that we all respond with loud laughter. now she is mildly insulted. i ease her out of her mood drop by commenting that we're just trying to make the junkie feel better by infusing laughter into this difficult time. she giggles. catastrophe averted.

my brother sends me a scowl and i tell him to shut up, ectoplasm.

the next suggestion is from my father. that he exercise about an hour before bedtime, then take a shower. though this may not seem like something that may tire you, it has been passed to him from some doctor or another and he thinks my brother should try it. my brother makes a weird face. he doesn't exercise. my father is quck, however. he elaborates, using my brother's fondness for the video game. his idea is to attach the bicycle to some sort of game that he has to pedal through. it's a tired joke and we all roll our eyes. my brother explains that he already has something like that; the dancing game pad.

you mean the game that the pimple-faced adolescents play at the arcade? i interrupt.

he nods his head once, again scowling.

i smirk, some laughter spilling out of my nose. oh, yeah, those kids are cool! we're here to support you in your time of crisis, my brother! dance that ass off! dance away those pills! they don't own you, brother! i've somehow adapted a southern baptist preacher's voice.

there is a lull and we hear a squeaking voice. my father is doing something with his chair and my mom snaps at him. apparently it's an expensive piece of furniture that is not to be squeaked with. he assuages her. i'm just rubbing my toe against the table leg. unfortunately this only escalates her annoyance.

you have such fungus feet! and what about those toenails? she now turns to the junkie and myself. i think he snorts coke with his big toe.

gross, mom.

Sunday, December 12, 2004


this blog probably won't be worth reading. i don't entirely feel like writing tonight. but if i don't i'll feel guilty or at least lazy, and i hate feeling lazy. feeling guilty isn't so great either.

but i will warn you that this will likely be one of those nights where my thoughts start off scattered and plain. recounting the events of last night so that you know i got drunk, i'll talk about the lack of eye candy in the village on a cold saturday night. i'll talk about my propensity to overtip and about my insecurities about the volume of my laughter. then maybe i'll reflect upon that moment when i asked my friend's boyfriend for his opinion on my lack of a companion. i'll remember that his response was depressing, making me think i'm not really as kickass as i know i am. but first, i'll likely tell you about how i almost got into a fight at that rest stop off the palisades right before the GW bridge. about how i ignored the dude's catcalls the first time, but got aggressive when he persisted. i'll tell you that he told me that i should consider myself lucky because he "holla'd" at me. i'll probably describe my rage and my decisiveness to attempt to break this man's pride. eventually i'll get around to summarizing with the afterthought of embarrassment of the entire incident. i'll offer my drunkenness as an excuse for not properly winning the battle.

and after all these bits and pieces of a barely amusing evening, i'll talk about the falafal and hummus joint we went to after the bar, adding that the word "hummus" was spelled with a Z at this place just for some concrete imagery. i'll tell you that i woke up the next morning with the taste of onions still owning my mouth. i'm sure i'll get into how much i hate waking up in a place that isn't my own when i'm hungover. you'll be bored and slightly disgusted when i tell you about how awkward i feel about crapping at my friend's apartment and that while she's in the shower, i contemplate how out of place i feel.

eventually, you'll be caught up in my descriptions and wit and i'll lace some kind of dramatic life-lesson into the mix. you'll be left on a profound note and forget the ramblings you had to endure to get to this anti-climax. i'll struggle for too long on forming a clever conclusion but opt instead for something melodramatic. i'll feel a twinge of success when i read the published words and hope that at least one person will be at least charmed, jealous or sexually aroused by my words.

but you'll see in the end that there's not much to be learned here and that i'm really only doing all this to make myself feel slightly more accomplished.

so there. you've been warned.

Tuesday, December 07, 2004


"She’s allergic to bees….If I’m not praying she’ll get married again, I’m praying she’ll get herself stung to death by a swarm of fucking bees."
--Raymond Carver, "What We Talk About When We Talk About Love"

so i took my kids on a field trip today. i was one of three chaperones--well four really if you count the skank--for all of 12 teenagers. my presence was completely unecessary, but i went anyway. i really should've stayed behind. but what can i do about it now? nothing. it's done.

we rode down in a yellow school bus. it was raining all day and the window for the seat in front of me kept slipping down. i kept having to get up to shut it because i was getting wet. eventually i just stopped getting up. i didn't even think to switch seats until this very moment. that seems so fucking obvious right now. oh well. so i got wet. big deal. i dried.

we went to the federal courthouse and saw lots of official looking people. it was educational. overall, a good field trip as far as field trips are intended to be. in theory there should've been some kind of assignment or assessment, but the kids are all seniors anyway. it doesn't make much of a difference now, you know.

on the way back we stopped at this oversized mall that really looks and feels like a parking garage, just with neon lights and merchandise. it's a horrible place but it had a food court, so we went. we had some time to kill because the presentations at the courthouse didn't go as long as we thought they'd go. kids like malls. there was that too. as we spilled off the bus, i stood at my seat to be the last one off, being a chaperone and all. i told the students to make sure they bought me lots of Christmas presents. i probably shouldn't have said that. one of them ended up telling me he was going to buy me a diamond ring. he actually went into the store, told me they'd give him a discount. the proposal was on the bus a few hours later. he was only kidding, but still. i guess i didn't see that one coming. i kinda smirked and ignored him. one of the other chaperones laughed loudly. i don't think we handled it very well at all. sometimes i think i'm a horrible teacher.

on the ride back i sat next to another chaperone. i didn't have to sit next to him. there were enough seats for each of us to have our own green vinyl bench. but all the other chaperones were up front so i went too. he was really tall and the whole arrangement was awkward because his legs took up most of the leg room. but i guess it wasn't really an issue. he's attractive and i don't mind bodily contact. he flirts with me a lot too. i probably shouldn't have sat next to him but i did. nothing i can do about that now. he started all that crap anyway. i wasn't asking for it. not like that skank has been. he tried talking to me but i have trouble carrying a conversation with him. i get fidgety and awkward. oh, and really self conscious. usually i'll just try to say something funny. i know i shouldn't behave that way, but i do. i think it's how i've always been. it's too late to go back on that now.

Thursday, December 02, 2004


my co-worker is fond of certain phrases. most of them i find hilarious. for example, she'll be chatting about her incorrigible children and husband, explaining their reluctance to do virtually any sort of cleaning. they'll typically counter her requests with some sort of excuse like, "why do we have to clean up? it's not like anyone's coming over!" to which she replies, "oh, right, why don't we just crap on the floor then!? it's not like anyone's coming over!"

my place of business is full of not-so-secretive affairs and affections and trysts. it's practically rare to not be involved in one if you're not young-ish and either single or married. i've only been working there for about 2 years and i've been the subject of a rather heated gossip story that even entertained me when i was able to grab snipets of the newest developments. my co-worker and i would discuss this and often, ever loyal to her verbiage, would settle upon the summation, "what did i tell you kristine? teachers are so incestuous!" nevermind her misuse or archaic use of the word, because it seems to fit with the kind of things that go on in our building.

allow me to attempt a character sketch. of course, it will be full of belittlement and condescention, but it's all warranted i assure you.

there is a woman who is present in my building for half of the day, every day. her job is not really with my company and so her time with us is drawing to a close this coming june. she is clearly and verbally unhappily married with three children. she teaches religion during the week and ritualistically carts her chubby children to and from their various sporting events while her husband is either working late or home making dinner. she doesn't cook. she bought him pots and pans for christmas.

her body is justifiable. she's one of those women who always wears a heel to make up for her height and who can get away with being overweight since most of her fat resides in her breasts. she has very thin legs, and often flaunts them with inappropriately short skirts being chased by tall black boots. her tops are usually baggy, but also low. she tans regularly and has frosted hair. she's addicted to lip balm and often begins or ends a conversation with nervous, unsettling laughter.

her fascination with her perception by men is most clear when she talks to me about her obsession with white teeth. she always has a toothbrush and toothpaste in her knockoff prada bag along with a ziplock baggie. the baggie is for when she's in the car and brushing, so she has somewhere to spit out her oral bubble bath.

she loves her husband because he's her best friend and could never ever see them getting a divorce. he doesn't give her sex and that is the single most disrupting factor in their union. sex. so she attends sex parties. she goes out to bars with other middle-aged and younger men and women while he stays at home, bitter. he's a recovering alcoholic.

she taunts our married co-workers with blatant flirtation and then brushes it off with a mention of her children or her devout beliefs. but she also sends dirty emails. she plays dirty songs for the men and tells them that the words make her think of them.

she tries to befriend me and i feel badly that i cannot fake some sort of minor respect for her. she is pitiful. the kind of pity that condones hostility and caustic words.

i wonder if she knows she's going to hell...