31 August 2007

9 in a little while

i've never been in therapy, but i've been to the optometrist.

for seven years, my optometrist has kept a record of my life that extends far beyond myopia and into my romantic endeavors. i don't know why. i just know this is how it has always been.

thus, my medical chart is a minefield of romantic disaster, riddled with notations like "wants to be in high school" and "really liked boys." i kind of sort of dreaded going to the optometrist today, because i was going to have to admit that he was right last year and we would officially enter into my medical records that the douche "went away."

after making this notation the optometrist glanced at my paperwork and looked me in the eyes he had yet to examine. "according to your chart," he said, in a slow soft voice- softened further by a cold that had earlier prompted some exceedingly inappropriate smooching jokes-"you have a hard time being single."

as i sat poised before the autorefractor, this seemed a most extraordinary revelation.

"but, you know, i have hope," he went on, as he typed this year's diagnosis into my chart: single for a little while. fabulous forever.

29 August 2007

6 size matters

some months ago, i bought lindear the biggest ring ever. because what better thing to give a friend for a birthday than bling?

but, because it was ordered online and shipped direct, i didn't fully appreciate how ridiculously outrageous this chunk of jewelry was until i was in town for megger's wedding-- when i ran into it and teased lindear in real horror, "where'd you pick up THAT thing?!"

"um... you," came her reply.

at the time, i honestly believed that ring was the largest piece of jewelry ever made. i believed i would never again see something so massive yet so cheap. i was wrong.

oh what wonders a girl can get for $3.95. on the left of this photo of blinding bling: the ring my mum gave me in 2003, which i complained was "obtrusively large." on the right: what passes for wonderful four years further down the road.

27 August 2007

0 90101010101010

i've been watching what my dad-- being one for "dad humor"-- always referred to as 90101010101010. it's no dr. quinn, but i must say there's something bizarrely riveting about a drama centered around characters clad in mom jeans that, with alarming frequency, showcases power door locks as cutting edge.

25 August 2007

4 friend & foe

in the category of random intense things written awhile ago...

there are these people who don't have friends (please note: THIS IS NOT ABOUT YOU!). maybe it's not that they don't have friends so much as they don't know how to have friends.

i once got stupidly entangled with one of these people and i was struggling the other day to articulate this to S. to explain the logic behind the voicemail from the bar at 4.30 on a friday afternoon and the statement "i can't be held accountable for what i do." i've concluded this is maybe the essence of this entire echelon of people- the core of truth you have to discern if you're ever to understand why they are the way they are, why they get drunk and throw things and curse pirates and hate cats. they are this way because they don't know how to have friends.

which is a pretty screwy way to be. because how can you not know how to have friends? pooh had piglet. mary had rhoda. even hitler had august kubizek.

i've driven some people away in my day. in 10th grade biology there was a girl i froze out for no other reason than that she traced over my frog drawing instead of doing her own. at the time, this was a cardinal sin. in hindsight, i was needlessly cruel. but there came this point where suddenly friends really mattered. like they REALLY mattered. and i think this creates a weird schism. like after high school when most everybody went to college and those two random loners went to locksmithing school instead. most people go the friend way but a few renegades don't. my question is this: how the hell are we supposed to communicate with those people?

and i think the answer is that maybe we can't. because they don't believe. and really, it all comes down to belief. people wander away and you have to believe they're going to come back. they tell you secrets and believe you're going to keep them. you hurt them and believe they're going to forgive. they fall apart and believe you're going to catch the pieces. you fall off the earth and they believe you'll resurface.

my absolute dearest friendships have been through whole worlds of shit. partner and i had epochs of tension. libby and i had spats and silence. i was downright vile to miss beautiful gold. during our 8 year break, poor S carried about an entire trunk whose contents were testament to the poetic sadistic bitch i can be.

and yet, these are my dear people. i don't begin to know who i would be without them because through the up and down, these are the people who are there. they are the level ground.

"i can't be held accountable for what i do." that's what he said and that is what stuck with me. i am allegedly the only friend of this particular person who doesn't know how to have friends, which is an ironic, awful burden given that we haven't been friends for years. but he doesn't know that. he can't see that he doesn't know how to have friends. so he's just another voice in a bar at 4:30 on a friday afternoon. just another stupid boy who cannot be held accountable for what he does.

22 August 2007

0 that's alright, mama

monday SUCKED. i like to put a rosy surface on everything but there's really no getting around that fact. monday sucked.

monday sucked so badly that on tuesday i resorted to inspirational jewelry.

some months ago, my aunt sent this silver bracelet with a bible verse. this was very sweet. but it was such a normal, new looking piece of jewelry (where were the two inch rhinestones? the jingling bells? the tarnished gold plating? the missing beads? the bling?) that i never got around to wearing it.

i didn't get around to it until tuesday. when i stood before my box of jewels and thought, "my God, if ever there was a time for a bible bangle, 'tis today..."

so i went out into the world wearing the bible bangle. i'm not quite sure what the logic behind this was. perhaps, bearing the bible bangle, i would be reminded that love is indeed the greatest of these and manage not to go completely stark raving mad. or that the bible bangle would somehow pave the way to a good day, propelling the forces of unmitigated evil from my path with the sheer power of it's silver-plated sincerity.

in the end, the bible bangle wound up making me a one woman sterling silver brass band. clanging against the desk with every single typographic movement. bashing against the chair every time i made to rise. producing an unbearable nails-against-the-blackboard noise with every sudden reach across the desk.

i spent the entire day cursing the bible bangle, which was probably sacreligious in at least ten different ways. but i have to say, if it's a question of holding a precious moments figurine aloft to ward off the bad or putting up with the bible bangle bombastics, the bible bangle's the way to go. monday may've sucked, but it's all alright.

18 August 2007

4 oh, drama

sometimes i wonder if i'm not a little too content with routine. yeah, there was the fortnight of manic socialization wrought by the parker posey, but still. shouldn't there be more to a friday night than 90210, yoga and reading until 3 a.m.? some Drama or some Event or, at the very least, Some Thing. then yesterday- as i snuggled up to the air conditioner with guralnick and a glass of lambic- i overheard this conversation, the benefits of which have been two-fold.

firstly, having spent half an hour subjected to every single gory detail of some random drunk dude's struggle with his acid-dropping ex-girlfriend, who's going to have an abortion next week because she fears getting fat, i will never ever again wish for drama. because i have it pretty damn good.

secondly, i will never ever again say anything of import into a telephone, much less say anything of extremely personal import into a telephone at an exceptionally high volume while standing on a balcony near an open window and a screen door.

16 August 2007

3 mistress information, get me memphis, tennessee

elvis is my heritage. he's in my family tree.

to me, this mississippi boy is memphis. stick me anywhere in the world, and if elvis is there, i am home.

it's not about the songs or the hair or the life drama or the fact that there was always something more than a little naughty about the leather jumpsuits, the mother love, and the 14-year-old girl. it's nothing to do with any of this.

it's all about that voice. a voice that captures better than any other thing in this world the aching and frustration and bother and beauty of being from memphis.

[as a random concluding addendum to our dead week festivities- today i wore blue rhinestone heels and i honestly felt that i was more productive and more mentally clear and more able to solve other people's problems throughout the day than i have been in weeks. had someone brought their autistic child to me, it is very possible i could've cured him too. all this because i was wearing rhinestones and blue shoes. ah, the power of the elvischrist.]

15 August 2007

5 king me!

i never ever shop in a chicago supermarket. however, i'll admit the supermarket has its charms. namely, superfood and jellied doughnuts. so it was that i wound up wandering the aisles of dominick's this afternoon.

you may not have guessed this, but i'm not exactly a doughnut girl. i didn't realize how obviously my grocerying betrayed this fact until the checkout kid- after scanning the 2 quarts of superfood, the yogurt, the bananas and the spinach- arrived at the little bakery bag and looked at me in puzzlement. DOUGHNUT??? he asked, his eyebrows arched in wonder. a doughnut, i said. for the king.

14 August 2007

0 a submission from me mum


2 slices white bread
peanut butter
1-2 bananas

mashed ver.: mash banana. toast bread lightly. spread peanut butter on one slice and mashed banana on the other. fry in melted butter until golden brown. serve hot.

sliced ver.: spread peanut butter thinly on both slices of bread. place banana slices in between and close sandwich. sauté in butter until golden brown. serve hot.

13 August 2007

4 so you were wondering what was the greatest elvis film ever made?

change of habit: featuring abortion jokes, the attempted rape of a nun, the magical curing of autism, and the king at quite possibly his cutest.

11 August 2007

5 the more you plan

still, things- impossibly awesome, freaking fantastic things- slip by.

10 August 2007

4 what we believe to be quite possibly the most pretentious thing ever to have been uttered by a dude in a bar

"i lament that this city is missing
the thriving heartbeat of media interaction."

the only thing that could render this statement more mind-blowing?

that it was uttered by a dude who introduced himself as "kabob."

09 August 2007

6 chuck klosterman asks the really really important questions

Q: you work in an office performing a job that you find satisfying (and which compensates you adequately). the company that employs you is suddenly purchased by an eccentric millionaire who plans to immediately raise each person's salary by 5% and extend an extra week of vacation to all full-time employees.

however, this new owner intends to enforce a somewhat radical dress code: every day, men will have to wear tuxedos, tails, and top hats (during the summer months, male employees will be allowed to wear gray three-piece suits on "casual fridays'). Women must exclusively work in formal wear, preferably ball gowns or prom dresses. each employee will be given an annual $500 stipend to purchase necessary garments, but that money can only be spent on work-related clothing.

the new regime starts in three months.

do you seek employment elsewhere?

A: wild horses could not keep me from this workplace.

06 August 2007

2 break through

every now and again, there are moments of complete revelation. epiphanies where i can clearly see these self-evident truths that i've somehow managed to overlook all along.

in this manner, i only just realized that i've spent the past year and a half living as though i were going to graduate and move somewhere else and have a real life a few years down the road.

only this weekend did it occur to me that this is actually probably it.

04 August 2007

0 smells & the city

the city smells differently every day. almost as though chicago were standing at the cologne counter and weaving his way down the tester line.

there are the fish days (disgusting), the chocolate days (heaven), and the pot days (inexplicable). but yesterday, there was something altogether new. yesterday, the city smelled like kindergarten.

kindergarten was my year on the stage. an asbestos renovation and a revision in the busing policy left my tiny little neighborhood school bursting at the seams. some classes were moved to portable buildings out back. my class, for reasons unknown, was relocated to the stage, which stood proudly at the front of a room that pulled triple duty as cafeteria/gym/theatre.

the stage had this plush red velvet curtain that would remain open throughout the day so that people could come in and peer at us learning our maths and we could peer out at them buying their lunch tickets. the curtain would only be shut during lunch, which insensibly coincided with our nap time. little me couldn't sleep so i'd lie there, clutching my blanket and biting my nails, lulled into a restive calm by the sounds of clanging cuttlery and constant chatter.

but there was this smell. of aged velvet, marinara sauce, paste, tide, books caressed by dirty kid fingers and that distinctive fresh chill that blasts out when you first open a freezer. it is a smell that i will forever associate with sleep and the theater and being five years old.

some days you need to be reminded of such silly little things. when you're walking to work stupidly early on a friday morning after a sleepless thursday night spent clutching a blanket and biting your nails. chicago knows this. that is why we love him.

03 August 2007

8 shockers

(1) bono is looking like brando.

(2) bono is "HOLDING HANDS!" with penelope cruz when he should clearly be recording the next u2 album.

not sure which is more shocking.

01 August 2007

4 the falling out

people, it's hot out there. opening the door of a car that's been sitting in the parking lot of a memphis strip mall the whole july day long HOT.

to combat this, one must be innovative. and to keep oneself from dying of heatstroke on the walk in, one must occasionally wear clothes that may not be entirely appropriate for work. that is what this one did today.

this silly girl in this freakishly hot city wore a sundress. a yellow billowy sundress with an empire cut and no waist to speak of. one of those convertable contraptions that can be a strappy or strapless dress. i have definitively concluded that this is the stupidest clothing concept in history. these dresses are the bisexuals of the apparel world. pick a side. straps or no? you can't have it both ways.

but it's hot out there and opening the door of a car that's been sitting in a memphis strip mall parking lot the whole july day long heat drives a girl to do desperate things.

like wearing a convertable sundress whose straps have a reputation for unanticipated liberation and that's a step or two over the line of risque so that the front slit must be safety pinned together to create the illusion of modesty. this seemed like a good idea. much as wearing rubberbands as kneesock garters has seemed like a good idea in the past. invariably, these good ideas suck.

so it was that i found myself spending the entire day exploding out of my clothes sending straps and safety pins flying about and racing to the bathroom to reassemble myself. so it was that i stood in a crowded elevator-- site of all great human dramas-- my skirt billowing open in an inexplicable elevator breeze to reveal ungodly amounts of inner thigh at precisely the second that my right strap burst undone with a loud snap that echoed in the cavernous silence, reminiscent of a slap bracelet smacking the skin.

i was standing there wishing i could take it all off and walk home in my underwear when the woman beside me said, ohmygod, those are the cutest shoes evah!!! and i remembered what i'd forgotten all day long. the leopard print shoes. though i'd been plagued by wardrobe malfunctions and strap explosions and skirt revelations, of course no one else had noticed. because the leopard print shoes are magic. the leopard print shoes make me appear gloriously pulled-together- even (especially) when my dress is falling down.