Reality Bites, or something like that

Amber Run- I Found (Acoustic, London Contemporary Voices)

There’s a feeling that is welling up inside of me, or maybe it’s a multitude of different ones, but they refuse to be named and set free.  I can’t stop obsessing over the onslaught that I know will come soon, yet stubbornly sits festering deep inside of me.

The past 2 years began as exciting and full of a possible future that I hadn’t dared to let myself believe I might find.  It’s ended with me right back where I began and $10K in debt for my troubles.  I’ve been desperately searching for some kind of reasoning to explain why, as it was made clear that I wasn’t going to get the satisfaction from him, and I keep finding articles about- “10 signs that you’re in a relationship with a narcissist” or “How can you tell if your partner has no empathy” or “Are you dating a psychopath”.  These all have bits and pieces that I can relate to, but none of them have given me a smoking gun that helps me to understand how I could have avoided all of this.

In reality, all of the Zen web sites are probably right when they tell me that time heals all wound, you should love yourself, and don’t let a bad yesterday spoil today- I just don’t believe it right now.  It takes 2 people to make or break a relationship and in this instance I’ve been accused of being cold and boring (i.e.- not wanting to go out and do anything), and sure- I’ll own that.  I was with a man who made clear to me that if I wanted him to do something that I would have to constantly remind him (he had ADHD) and who spent the majority of the past 2 years unemployed- meaning that I was paying for his car insurance, cell phone, psychiatric visits, medications, food, clothing, and I’m rambling.

At the time, I thought that we were a team, that he was all in, and that the hard times would pass.  I kept telling myself that once he found a job, then things would be like they were in the beginning of the relationship, before he spent all day on the couch or walking around the neighborhood.  I kept hoping that maybe he would clean up his dishes one day so that I didn’t have to spend the first 30 minutes I was home cleaning in order to make dinner for us.  And somewhere in the middle, I stopped lying to myself and came to terms with the fact that I’d fallen for a very lazy man who didn’t understand how to follow through with anything that he said he’d do.  This is where I probably should have said something to him instead of just staying quiet and trying to get through the days.  I was still deluding myself that everything would get better once he found a job.

Then, he found a job.  He had insisted that waiting tables was the only job that he wanted to do and I respected that, but then he started to stay out all night.  I didn’t like it.  I didn’t like waking up with no text, no voice mail, no idea where he was.  It hurt.  I said something, but it was already too late.  He changed restaurants and started working somewhere farther away, and then he just didn’t come home for weeks.  He said that he just couldn’t deal with the “commute”.  I had no say in the matter and I guess I really just didn’t matter in the equation.

This went on for longer than I should have let it and finally, after he again told me he was coming home and never showed, I spent the entire morning calling his phone every 30 minutes until he finally responded.  He was annoyed at me because I was calling him while he was at work, though he’d never bothered to tell me a schedule or any information other than vague descriptions of the people and place he was staying.  He texted me that he felt, “this just isn’t working” and I didn’t even get the satisfaction of telling him to his face that our relationship was over as I’d been planning to do before he forgot to come home, yet again.

It was done. He was gone.  I felt like an asshole for being conned into supporting him for over a year when it had become very clear to me that had he not been unemployed, the relationship would have ended long before that point.

I’m not a saint, nor am I blameless.  I work long hours.  I have a very stressful job.  I am not great at talking about it when I’m truly hurting.  Hell, I’m the most open on a blog where anonymous strangers are the only people who will read this and even then it’ll reach no more than 20 people!  I really don’t see any risk to my heart by bearing my soul to the void.

And all of this does me no good in the present.  I have friends that love me, my family loves me, most of them just can’t spend any time with me.  I’m mourning the loss of something I could never have- a partner in life who accepts me as I am and cares enough to fight for me.  I didn’t think that I was looking for perfection, but apparently I’ve been hoping to find a fictitious being that doesn’t exist.

It’s just a stark reminder that I am not a person who other people choose to be around.  A reminder that I am meant to be alone and I should just get on with doing that.

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Have We Met Before?

A light breeze turned the pages of her notebook as she gazed into the distance, lost in the jumble of images floating through her head.  It had been months since she was able to make the trip to her favorite cafe with her notebook, pen, and imagination, but that most crucial imaginative element seemed to be eluding her at the moment.  The only things that she could think about were reports and emails and all of the many tasks that she could be doing to get ahead in the office and a silent, sickening feeling was settling in the pit of her stomach.

With a resigned sigh, she gently tossed the pen onto the notebook and leaned back in the chair to take a sip of her coffee.  The cafe wasn’t the most hip place to be; strictly corporate, truth be told.  The people watching was descent, however, and it didn’t require an incredible drive on her part.  That being said, it was not uncommon for her to be the only 30 something in the place.  Setting her coffee back onto the table, she picked the pen back up and continued her aimless gazing at the blank page on the table.

The door chimed and she looked up from her contemplation to see a man coming through the door, a warm smile on his face as he called out a greeting to the other young man behind the counter.  It was like watching a scene out of a John Hughes movie, with the super popular guy walking into the room in slow motion.  Before she even realized that she’d been staring, he had already caught her eyes.  The heat crept up her face very quickly and she’d never been more thankful that her foundation was extremely good at covering up the red of her embarrassment.  A sly smile lifted one corner of his mouth and with a wink, the man made his way toward the back of the cafe where a small group of people were waiting for him.  Once his back was turned, she let her head fall to her notebook and let out the breath that she hadn’t realized she’d been holding.

What the hell was wrong with her?!  He wasn’t exactly smoking-hot-male-model material, but she hadn’t been able to look away.  There’d been a moment of recognition and she couldn’t place his face.  Try as she might to get back to her writing, the woman found herself glancing toward the group and the man who was conveniently facing her.  Did she recognize him from the cafe?  He obviously seemed to know the staff well, but was he a regular?

She looked back over toward the group once more and again, he caught her eyes and the two of them just stared.  He knew that she was watching him and she knew that she was busted.  Frozen for what felt like an hour, she looked back down to her notebook and began to write.  Still no story ideas flowing so her composition was a grocery list.  After that the woman didn’t dare look over at him again.  She didn’t particularly feel like having them ask her to leave for making the customers uncomfortable.  Once the grocery list was completed, a fresh cup of coffee was in order.  She got up from her table and made her way to the counter.  As the guy behind the counter handed her the full mug, she steeled her nerves and blurted out her question.

“So, who is the guy that came in earlier- a friend of yours or just a regular?”  Her delivery was sufficiently neutral, but the man still gave her that knowing look that all people have when you mine them for information about anyone of the opposite sex.

“He’s a regular.  That whole groupp, they come in every weekend for a few hours, why do you ask?”

“No reason, he just looked familiar.” she replied and returned to her table.

When she settled back in to the seat disappointment hit square in the chest as she realized that the boisterous group of people had all left along with her chance of working up the nerve to go and talk to him.  The little angry voice in her head began it’s chastising for being a scardie cat and letting yet another moment get away.  This was the point at which she reminded her inner voice that there was a reason that she was in her thirties and single to which the voice responded that she shouldn’t forget that she also had three cats and would be getting a rocking chair and shot gun for her birthday.

There were no stories flowing from her mind, pen, or any other useful instrument at all, so she sat there with her cooling coffee, doodling eyes in the margins of the notebook.  She’d been so absorbed in her own inner monologue that the approaching figure made her jump when he got to the table.  He hadn’t left after all.

“Hi.” She said and immediately began choking on her coffee.

“Hi.” he replied, “you ok?”  She still couldn’t speak so she gave him a weak thumbs up. “Sorry to bother you, but I kind of noticed you staring at us back there and this may sound stupid, but, have we met before?”

“I’m not sure, but you look really familiar.  I’m sorry to have stared, it’s not a habit, promise.” she said.

“You can stare all you’d like,” he replied with the same half smile he’d given her earlier, “May I sit?”

Her heart was now beating faster and she was sure that her inability to respond was clearly plastered all over her face, “Sure.” she managed to croak out.

“Don’t worry, it’s just a cup of coffee.”  he said, sitting across from her and somehow those words untied the nervous knot in the pit of her stomach and she finally smiled back at him.

Nine Inch Nailed at the Sock Hop

It was one of those Fridays when I felt like I had nothing to wear because there was not one piece of clothing in the closet that made me feel sexy and confident and ready to take on the town.  My makeup was done, the cat eyes were purrfect and my lips were as red as a corvette.  That’s when my friends told me to go naked, so I did.  Mysteriously, by the time that we left the house I found I was dressed in a little white number with gold accessories- kind of reminded me of She-Ra, but it didn’t matter- we were going to the sock hop!

The group of us made our way down the street, in a manner strangely reminiscent of some video we’d seen in the days when MTV still aired those kinds of things.  We laughed, we joked, we pushed each other into oncoming traffic- we were carefree!  It was then that a man stepped forth from the alley and blocked our way.

“Hey, little girls,” he said, smelling curiously like Summer’s Eve Fresh Meadows, “I see that you’re on your way to the sock hop.”

“Why, yes, yes we are, but we mustn’t speak to you- you’re a stranger!” said my friend, who was dressed as Pedo-Bear.

“No, I’m no stranger!  Here, let me introduce myself,” at that moment, my friend’s phone chimed and she’d received a follow request from Twitter.

“Right, well then, we must be friends now!” She said and gave the brightly dressed man a hug,”My friend- what are you doing standing in this dark alley?”

“Well, I’m trying to get rid of these magic cigarettes.  They’ve been specially made for me by the bath salt company, but I’ve recently quit smoking!  I’m just not sure what I can do to get my money back and I’ve got to pay my rent tonight!”  The brightly dressed man was twitching so rhythmically that I thought he was moon-walking back and forth across the alley and my friend threw up her hands tossing her wallet at her new friend.  He then tossed her 2 boxes of cigarettes and ran faster than any skinny white kid since Maniac Magee and one phrase kept rolling through my head- stranger danger.

Taken from Pictureisunrelated.com

The rest of the way to the sock hop, my friends were pressuring me smoke one of these fancy cigarettes, but I’ve learned to live above the influence and continued to sip on slizurp while politely refusing their advances.  It wasn’t until the door man looked at me like a wolf that I noticed my party had not actually made it to the door with me.

“It appears that my friends have abandoned me!  May I please get in for free?” I asked sweetly.

“There’s no cover, love, go right on in!” he said with a wink.

I proceeded to the bar but was stunned at the scene before my eyes.  Millions of glowing, wolf like eyes had turned in my direction and were glaring at me as though I were a side of beef.  I coughed nervously, trying to determine if I could make a run for the door when a blood curdling scream came from the door.  My friends had finally gotten there, but to my horror they’d turned into Zombies in the time that we’d been apart- God Damn You Bath Salts!

They were viciously making their way through the crowd of fantastically good-looking werewolves that I’d found myself trapped by.  Ears flew by me and the white parts of my dress were slowing becoming covered in congealing crimson streaks of blood.  It was then that I noticed one of my favorite songs, Ringfinger, coming from the speakers and over the screams as the wolves began to turn into Zombies and assist my posse with dispatching the rest of the crowd.

  As the screams died down and my friends made their way back to the bar, I saw him standing there on the dance floor, still swaying as through holding the date that the guy next to him was chewing on.  It made my heart melt.  I went over to him and looked lovingly into his glistening cataracts.

“Hi there, what’s your name?”

“LeRoy, LeRoy Lamont,” he replied,”You know that your friend over their ate my fiance, right?”

“I’m so sorry about that, they were given these Bath Salt Cigarettes on the way here and I told them to just say no, but what can you do?”  The zombie chewing on LeRoy’s woman stood with two-thirds of an ear dangling from his tooth.  He’d been dressed like 1970’s Elvis, but had somehow managed to lose the pant part of the sequined jump-suit.

“Hey, Bubba. You don’t look so good. And why ain’t you wearin’ no britches?” LeRoy asked.  Elvis shrugged, groaned, and began to pick his way through the bodies in search of fresher meat.

“Would you like me to walk you home, little lady?”  My dress had now gone completely Crimson and my gold accessories were transformed into black leather.  He handed me a matching crimson cloak from the racks by the door as we walked arm-in-arm back toward my apartment.

And the moral of this rambling and pointless little farce is, well, who am I kidding- there really isn’t a moral, I’m just really bored.  HAVE A SAFE AND HAPPY WEEKEND EVERYONE!

Poetry: number 2

Saturday has come again! On this particular day I’ve been looking back more than I probably should and came across an old notebook with, you guessed it, old poetry :-). I’ve done a bit of editing and promise to wait 2 more years before subjecting you to any more of it!

Untitled-
The strength you cannot name
A walking contradiction
Yet still you walk
Toward that void
The unknown
Cavernous pit
You are thrown
Again and again
By ghosts you cannot touch
To a hell unknown
Still you walk
Still you fight
Enemy in the mirror
Distorted truth
Dreams of tomorrow
The death of a foe
That transcendent moment of truth
You regret for the rest of your life
And still you walk
Still you pray
Calloused and bruised
Bloody and worn
You march
Toward the future
So fleeting.

The Story is Finally Coming Out

Maybe it’s just that I’ve been able to focus more or maybe it’s that the voices in my head have become more open to divulging their many secrets, but the story of James and Anca is FINALLY coming together.  I’ve said it many time, though not in public, I should have listened to Mrs. Batty sooner.  She nailed the fact that the action of the story is with the James/Anca relationship and the Shawn/Celeste investigation very early on, but I just love Celeste and James so much that I wanted to tell too much of their story.  It was pretty boring.  So, the mission for this week was set at 20 pages.  This doesn’t seem like a lot for a 7 day span, but there is so much time spent staring off into the distance that sometimes 20 pages seems like Mt. Everest.

We are going down a less is more route and that seems to be making more sense.  There may still be more to it, but James isn’t talking.  He is being wonderfully tight lipped about his own short comings so I’ve had to wait on Anca to tell me the whole story.  She is hesitant because she’s feeling a little idiotic for not seeing right through his obvious deceptions.  On the other hand, Celeste has been extremely shy about her role in all of this.  She is the key stone, but just like in a building, she is hidden behind the entire structure and she seems happy to stay that way.  Shawn is still Shawn, which means that he won’t talk at all and I’ve had to rely on Brennan recounting things to me second hand, so you can see how that doesn’t work so well.  Either way- I’m slowly but surely getting to the heart of this story and I’m feeling good about the multitude of changes that have been made so far.  Mrs. Batty and I will sit down tomorrow and work through the opening scene and my new timeline, in synopsis form (gonna pat myself on the back)!  Hopefully she doesn’t say anything insightful that makes me do a face-palm and scream D’Oh!

Book Review: Jude in London by Julian Gough

This book is a steadily paced and hilarious romp through the tomes of literature and economic theory.  I have been following Mr. Gough (pronounced like cough) on Twitter and was honestly very curious to read this book after it had been described along the lines of Robert Anton Wilson’s The Illuminati!  I can only remember that I got the distinct impression Mr. Wilson had been tripping his proverbial balls off while he wrote this and was quite curious about the spin that Jude in London would have.  That being said, I was very happy that I had finally gotten my hands on the Trust Edition of Jude in London and have spent the past week reading in short controlled bursts about the randomness that is Judes’ journey.  At one point, I even laughed so loud that I woke the dog and the dog snores like an asthmatic with a cold.

Within the for 100 pages, the hero has saved the world, lost his true love to a monkey, and made a suit from paper bags and rabbit skills gathered from road kill.  Being a student of International Relations, I was actually more taken by the building of the wall by the successful Irish lads and it’s description of how and why Hedge Funds may have been a not so good idea.  Jude struck me as the single most idiotic and anachronistic man on the planet, while also being an idiot savant with the intelligence of Albert Einstein.  The way that his thoughts force a breakdown of all the double speak around the situations he is being thrown into is really refreshing.  As you read, you can see yourself say- well, DUH!

The walk throws a nod to Thoreau as the hero lives off that land and claims a traffic median as his own untouched land, while as he’s entering the city Jude is graced with a fantastic comparison of the creation and collapse of the housing market to that of a goat exchange (stock market-esk) in a fictitious Solalia.  I can only say that this was the best explanation I have heard to date and am wishing that it could find it’s way on to CNN so that everyone who is confused as hell might be able to understand the issue.  The journey that we follow is classical, he’s on a quest to find Angela, but along the way, there is a ton of commentary about the state of literature, art, art and literature prizes, the pretension of the aristocracy, and the ego of the film industry.

I loved that London was wonderland.  Jude roams through the great big city with the eyes of a simpleton viewing things that we make exceptionally convoluted and the fact that Mr. Gough has an entirely X-rated scene, roughly 10 pages long in which he uses not one pornographic term.  I do wonder whether a person unfamiliar with a top 100 list of classical literature and authors would understand some of the names used, but it was very amusing.  After Jude wins the Turner of Turner Prize for doing absolutely nothing the quest to uncover the secret of his origin continues as well as a quest for his new true love who has been sent back to America.  The whole journey in the olive oil I can only compare to a birthing experience.  It just seems a bit, well, oily to me 😉

As a whole, I laughed, I cried (not really), and I enjoyed reading Jude in London.  I may just have to download Jude in Ireland now!

The Block Is Back!

I have been on such a role while trying to avoid studying!  The story line and characters were just rocking and I was producing pages, maybe not good, but pages of written material and now….. Dangit.  I have been staring at a blinking cursor for a few hours trying to figure out what comes next and nothing is popping to mind.  Maybe it’s just the fact that in my brilliance, I’ve drastically altered one of the characters story lines, thereby opening up a large portion of the story to more action and apparently stumping myself 😦

I hesitate to ask for advice because that typically results in many writing prompt suggestions and I’m really not in the mood to write a short story about a time when something or other happened.  I have already taken a trip down memory lane and gone through my music library looking for inspiration and I’ve also taken a nice drive hoping to nudge the creativity along, to no success. Poo.  Where is Tinkerbell when you need her?