frictioning geometry.

Tonight felt so much like what this used to feel like.

Evan is gone. Backpacking. And this feels alone like I used to be. Alone.

Staying up late, working on projects, drinking wine, listening to this:

This whole album.

And flipping through an old friend of a book, trying to help a commenter who got lost in the mix. Remembering the power of this:

“Because secrets do not increase in value if kept in a gore-ian lockbox, because one’s past is either made useful or else mutates and becomes cancerous. We share things for the obvious reasons: it makes us feel un-alone, it spreads the weight over a larger area, it holds the possibility of making our share lighter. And it can work either way – not simply as a pain-relief device, but, in the case of not bad news but good, as a share-the-happy-things-I’ve-seen/lessons-I’ve-learned vehicle. Or as a tool for simple connectivity for its own sake, a testing of waters, a stab at engagement with a mass of strangers.”

– A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius.  [Dave Eggers].

It rings so true and affirms decisions to turn harboring weight into art. Use it. Mold it. Be it. Show it.

We all got things to hide.

Lovely.

Sitting in this seat. Working. Staring at a screen. The windows open. Hearing people at the park down the road. Cheering. Laughing. Yelling. And just sitting here. Staring. Listening. More wine, please. Don’t mind if I do.

Photos of myself. Just like it used to be. Just like it used to feel.

likeitusedtobe

It’s just a reflektor.

Making sure I’m still here. Like it used to be. Still in a kitchen.

Is my kitchen messy? Is it messier than most? Every single drawer is open. Every drawer in my life is open at least a little bit… some are spilling; some only hanging on by frictioning geometry.

Do I look older? Shit, I am older. Wait. Am I old? No. Right?

It’s time for the night.

ohmygodthankyouforbeinghere.

where the smoke from a chimney ended.

Two things I very much want to share.

The first is this:

What 20-Somethings Want

“You want to find someone who will pick you up from the airport. It’s such a kind gesture but also one you would expect from someone who loved you a reasonable amount. The thought of having to wait for a shuttle while others are embracing their loved ones on the curb might just be too much for your little heart to bear. Where’s your car full of love? Where are the people who are going to make you feel welcome in this city? And, no, you are NOT going to take a taxi. You have too many friends who like you WAY too much for you to be taking that nonsense. Right? Hello? I’M AT TERMINAL 3. WHERE ARE THE PEOPLE THAT LOVE ME? Dear god, people have started to hug on the curb. Come quick!

You want to live closer to your parents. It’s not because you need to see them more. God no! Who would ever do a thing like that? It’s for if you ever wanted to see them. If their health took a turn for the worse, god forbid, or if you ever felt lonely and needed to just sleep in a home that felt warm and loved, you could do it. Living far away from them has its advantages but you’re starting to realize how much you miss out on by being on the opposite end of the country. If you lived in the same city as your parents, feeling safe and secure would just be one phone call and a twenty minute drive away.

You want to be “stable” and see yourself make real progress. You would love to find the key to adulthood (Um, I think I saw it at Crate & Barrel next to the colanders) and not want to get drunk at happy hour anymore. It’s quickly turning into unhappy hour and you’re trying hard not to become a casualty of your age. You want nothing more than just to make it through the twentysomething rain and land on a nice job, a nice couch that wasn’t purchased from IKEA, and, most importantly, someone’s nice dick and/ or vagina.

You want to develop a backbone and start saying no to having lunch with the random friend from high school. In fact, you want to abolish “catch up” lunches altogether. People are either in your life as it happens or not in it at all. Sitting through these elaborate brunches with people who once meant something to you but no longer make sense, and talking about how great your lives are going while reflecting on the good ol’ days is a slow form of masochistic torture. It feels like performance art: *INSERT SMILE HERE* and *INSERT “I’M IN A REALLY GOOD PLACE. HOW ABOUT YOU?” HERE*. You’ve been through so many lunches like this that you could practically do them in your sleep. In fact, you should probably just arrive to the restaurant 15 minutes early and place a giant stuffed animal in the chair in place of you and run out before your old school chum arrives. Don’t worry, they won’t notice! You can even attach a tape recorder and have it come on intermittently to say things like, “You look great! Can I have the Egg’s Benedict?” Or my personal fave catch-up topic, “I saw on Facebook that you two broke up. What happened?”

You want to know that you’re not insane, that there are other 24-year-olds have never been in a relationship before, or that other people have gotten too drunk and vomited on their taxi driver before and it’s all okay because this is growing up. Or something. You’re not actually sure. You never received an official manual but you figure that this is what it’s all about — feeling alienated and vomiting on strangers and never having as much sex as you would like. You just want to know that the things you’re going through aren’t unique, that other people are in the same rickety brokedown palace of a boat. I mean, you don’t mind being crazy so long as there are people out there who are equally as psycho. You’d prefer it if they were actually crazier than you, so you could feel good about yourself and where you’re at in your life.

You want a job, a vacation, heath insurance, validation, a back rub, a scalp massage at the place where you get your haircut, people who are jealous of you, an ex who won’t stop texting you when they’re drunk, Twitter followers, happiness maybe sorta, someone to buy you lunch at a fancy restaurant, a mentor who can tell you what the hell to do with your life, a reliable internet connection, a reliable human connection, a gift card to the grocery store, dinner parties with friends where everyone will pretend to have their crap together for just one night, a nice flirty text message to wake up to every morning for the rest of your life, for everyone to like you even if you don’t like anyone, and one of those nights that doesn’t end till 9 AM and reminds you what it feels like to be young and alive. Oh, and $$$. That’s all. Think you can get that for me? For us?”

[the link: http://thoughtcatalog.com/2012/what-20-somehings-want/]

Right?  I mean, right?

I love it.  I love it all.  Lisa [my most lovely] sent me that… and I just think it’s wonderful/hilarious/amazing.

Speaking of amazing…

Read this book…

Maybe my favorite book.

Another thing Lisa has given me that is beautiful and irreplaceably perfect.

Every time I think about this book… this precious book… I am brought back to reading it by the wall in the park near the museum in Sydney that I visited often.  Being in such a large city.  Disappearing.  Finding things.  Finding me.

Here.

Right there.

A powerful time.  Definitely a time for the books.

The book.

Read it.

And then watch the movie…

I don’t know if you’ll love/understand it as much if you don’t read the book first.

I just finished watching it… in the theater… by myself.  [by choice… not that there’s anything wrong with that.]

And I was brought back to that wall in the park near the museum.  Alone.  Filled.  Bursting.

I loved it.  I recommend it to you.

gorgeous and affecting.

Three years ago today, I didn’t have today.  I didn’t have a January 7th.  I lost that day in the flight from Austin to Sydney.

So much has changed since that day.  It’s hard to even compare my life then and now… so different.

Sydney changed me… for the better.  But it was so hard.  It was a journey.  It was aloneness… a long, tear-filled, conversation with myself.

I wouldn’t trade it for the world.

[sent from the gorgeous, emma, with the note: This made me think of you and your time in Australia and many other things in all of our lives. love love love.]

fighting a hard battle.

I am a bitch.

It’s true.  I find myself so quick to judge, so quick to be ugly, so quick to not care…

– Oh, you got a new job?  That’s great, really.  Oh, it’s your dream job AND the first job you’ve ever applied for.  Awesome… for you.

——–

– If that guy doesn’t stop talking so loudly on his phone, I’m going to dunk it in his flamboyant double soy peppermint mocha.

——–

– Girls who put up profile pictures of them posing with their boyfriends after dating for a month have no self-built substance.

——–

See?  I told you.  Bitch.

And then I was standing at the sink today, washing dishes, and I remembered an interaction.  One I had forgotten about.  How do I do that?  Just forget about such powerful things…

When I lived in Australia, I was invisible.  I almost not kidding.

I lived there for six months and a large amount over 99.9% of Australians have no idea I was there.

If you’re one to believe that some higher power puts you through trials to make you stronger, well, this was one of those times for me.  Loneliness tightly book-ended by the Pacific Ocean and the [even deeper] sea of Sydney residents.

And after attempt after attempt to make friends, I just stopped caring.  I would just start talking to people like they knew who I was, or they should know who I was, or [probably the most popular] I was crazy and likely homeless.

– You should watch your kid, she’s about to run in the street.

——–

– I would live at Hogwarts if I had a choice to live anywhere.

——–

– That dress is adorable!

——–

But no one noticed me.  I really might have been invisible.

And the phenomenon that came from this was that people started to just say things to me.  I was the American that obviously did not like it here and was leaving soon and didn’t have any friends to tell anything to anyway.

I became an invisible friend… who you couldn’t make eye contact with because then you would be acknowledging you were talking to someone who didn’t really exist… then who’s the crazy one?

– Sometimes I pocket some of the tip jar for myself just because my boss is such a dick.

——–

– I really do love my girlfriend, but sometimes to seal the deal, I have to picture my ex.  [i apologize for my younger and/or easily offended readers.]

——–

– You wanna get some dinner?

——–

Okay, that last one was not a secret, just an amazingly blinding invitation from a girl I had met once before.  It was a few nights before I left Australia and I was just wandering… wandering around Newtown… an overly hip part of Sydney.  I was thinking about going to see my second movie of the day at a pub theater and drinking my fourth beer of the day.  [it was around 5:30.]

I ran into Chloe* on the street.  She looked very upset.  We had met at a party I attended on a whim.  I had this round-about connection with a friend from America and well, long story short… I went to a party where I knew almost no one… like an idiot… and met Chloe.

Chloe was 20 and H-I-P.  And gorgeous.  And had such a great smile.  When her tiny, tan, blue-eyed self flashed you a gorgeous smile, you just couldn’t help but hate her a little bit.

– Hey, Chloe.

– Oh, hey……..

– Rachel.

– That’s right… sorry.

– No worries.  [i was still trying real hard to keep up with the lingo.]

– How are you getting on?

– Eh, I’ve been better.  Going back home in a couple days.  How ’bout you?  You doin’ alright?

– Eh, not really.

– Oh, I’m sorry.

– You wanna get some dinner?

And in my head, I thought, What?  YES!  A friend?!  Why is this just coming right before I leave?!  But I said.

– Uhh… Yeah, sure.

Chloe was upset.  For sure.  She took me to a Greek hole-in-the-wall restaurant and I had to pretend I knew what to order.

We started to eat.  Okay, I started to eat.  Chloe didn’t eat.  She started crying.

– What’s the matter?

– Oh, just everything.

And it really was one of those “just everything” situations.

I had known that she and her boyfriend had broken up… he was the round-about friend that a friend knew… so, I figured that maybe it was about this boy.  And, well, it kind of was.

Chloe proceeded to tell me how her and Kyle* were having a rough time.  Doing different things.  Growing different ways.  But they had been together for so long, been each other’s first loves, that it was really hard to face the fact that it maybe wasn’t working.  She told me that Kyle decided he wanted to see what else was out there…

– So, we broke up.

– Oh, I’m so sorry, Chloe.

– And then I found out I was pregnant.

My god.  What a horrible thing.  I can’t even begin to imagine finding out that I was carring a human, a life that was from a man that didn’t want to be with me.

I couldn’t believe she was telling me this.  But, then again, I was her invisible dinner companion that would be gone from the country in a few days.

– Kyle wanted me to get an abortion.  I wanted that too, actually… I can’t say that it was just him, but he was just so quick to say it.

She told me about how he helped pay for the procedure and how it was the worst thing she’s ever gone through.  She was crying.  And then she told me about how Kyle stuck around about a week afterwards and now has gone and found himself a new girlfriend… and won’t even return her calls.  And she started crying harder.

– It’s just so lonely.  Everything just crumbled so fast.  And now he won’t even talk to me!

– Oh, Chloe.  Have you told anyone about this?

– No.  You’re the first.  We decided it would be best to not tell anyone.

I couldn’t believe it.  Such pain.  Such raw sharing.  With me… no one.  I told her she HAD to tell someone.  Talk to someone about this.  It’s her life… her pain… she had the right to share it with close, loved ones.

We talked for a lot longer, through a bottle of wine and more cheese.  We even laughed a couple times.  Chloe flashed that gorgeous smile and I didn’t hate her at all… my heart swelled at her loveliness.

We walked out of the restaurant and hugged before parting ways.

– Good luck getting back to the States.

– Thanks.  Hey, good luck with all of this.  You’re strong.  You’re going to be great.

Walking back to the train station, I started to cry a little bit.  And I promised myself that I would NEVER judge a person before knowing their story.  I would never be ugly again, cynical… a bitch.  I would realize that quote that’s on corkboards around the world…

Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle.  ~Plato”

I guess I’ve forgotten.

I’m remembering now.

[*Names changed to protect people I don’t keep in contact with and probably have no clue this here blahg exists.]

alive, alone, not lonely.

It’s April Fool’s.  I got nothin’.  Sorry.

I had this elaborate plan to convince the doctor at my routine check-up this morning that I was a hermaphrodite, but I chickened out… and she would’ve figured out soon enough… it was a ladydoctor appointment.  [TMI?  mehdunno.]

After my appointment I disappeared to a small coffee shop that serves flat whites and delightful pastries… all on precious, mismatched, vintage china.

I felt alive, alone, not lonely, present reading a book.  Such an amazing book.  Maybe a new fave.

And I started underlining things as I became wrapped up in this book.  I couldn’t put it down.  I meant to stay at this café for a hot second [approx. 20 min.] and all the sudden I was there for an hour and a half, turning page after page… frantically starting another chapter after the final period of the last… scared of reading too quickly because if I wasn’t careful, I would read right to the finish… without realizing [preparing myself for] the end.

I picture me singing loud to my new favorite song and then the power goes out and I’m left singing without music… hearing myself… knowing how bad I really sound… the song has stopped.  The book is over.

All that to say that I was taken back to Australia… and I’m sure you’re over me saying that.  Over me talking about the shitty year, that hard time and all the glorious invisibility it gave me.  But sitting there, drinking my flat white, I felt like I was in Australia… and then Alison Espach wrote this:

“There was something about being in a foreign country that validated and glorified your own sense of isolation.  My loneliness felt epic…”

Ugh.  I felt so close to her.  So close to myself.  My Australia self.

And it made me want to find that again.  In a foreign country.  She also said:

“I’ve never felt more like my unself.  People should really say, I’m going to Europe to find out who I’m not.”

And I wanted to go to Europe… more than before.

And I couldn’t stop reading.  Couldn’t stop being there.

And I just wanted to share.

And then I drove home and listened to Jessica Lea Mayfield:

[happy april first.]

 

the remnants of the good of the darkness.

The last two nights, I’ve had vivid dreams about moving back to Australia.

My friend, Andrew, says…

– Dreams are like pictures: If I’m not in them and no one’s naked, I don’t care.

Well, some of my good friends were in the dreams, as well as the family I used to work for: The Vincents, but no one got naked.

So, you probably don’t care… but…

Australia was such a hard, dark time.  It was like I couldn’t take a right turn; just became more and more lost.

That’s what my dreams felt like.  With that feeling and saying out loud in my dream…

– I came here to make it right… but I just want to go home.

Woke up and made coffee.  Made it in the percolator Evan gave me… one like I used to drink coffee out of in Australia.

One featured in this: http://en.sevenload.com/videos/NbUcslm-William-Kentridge-Journey-to-the-moon

[only place i could find the video… it’s long, but it’s beautiful.]

Felt scared/refreshed/alive/comforted.

Finally made a good cup of coffee.  Haven’t in so long.

Got to work.

Sat in my bed/desk.  Home.  Felt comforted to not be in Australia.  To be home.  Drinking the remnants of the good of the darkness out of an owl cup.

Worked on designs.

Found an ad in the paper that had designs I recently made for a T-shirt:

Smiled.

Turned on KHOL.

Love my fellow DJs and how much they love good music and their community.

Found new loves of songs:

Remembered old loves:

Worked more.

Wrote reviews:

Dom – Sun Bronzed Greek Gods EP
Lo-Fi Noise Rock
RIYL: Best Coast, Dum Dum Girls
“Remixed and Remastered” rereleases only fly if your music is downright wonderful, which Sun Bronzed Greek Gods is. The songs may sound familiar but the magic is still there with every play.  Dominic, the mastermind behind the band who goes by “Dom”, declares, “We want to be the Madonna of garage rock.” They are not far off at all. Dom is garage rock if your garage contains a disco ball, the decor of neon spray paint and a dance-only hopscotch: awesome. The lovechild of Robyn + Menomena = Dom.
PLAY: 2, 1, 3, 4, 5, 7, 6
http://www.myspace.com/dom/

Wye Oak – Civilian
Indie Folk Rock
RIYL: Sharon Van Etten, Cat Power, Heartless Bastards
If Civilian were a played as a concert, I picture a lot of hip suspenders and/or high-waisted skirt clad people in the crowd swaying along to the beautiful soundtrack to their favorite all-night coffee shop.  Every so often they would nod their heads in a near aggressive manner as Wye Oak steps it up and rocks out a bit; as much as Folk Indie “rocks out”.  The Maryland duo Andy Stack (drums, keyboards, backup vocals) and Jenn Wasner (vocals, guitars) do not disappoint as their third full album release brings spooky, delightful, intimate tunes comparable to those of Sharon Van Etten, Cat Power and Heartless Bastards.
PLAY: 2, 5, 7 [but all are good and dreamy.]
http://www.myspace.com/wyeoak

All in all, a good morning.

[realizations of a photo developing from darkness to a bright, beautiful picture of home.]

 

that whole reading/reader situation.

My dear Dabney sent this to me today: http://thebookspy.blogspot.com/

I love it.

The site documents what people spotted in subways are reading and give projections about that whole reading/reader situation happening.

It kinda made me miss Australia; where I rode a train constantly and always had a book in hand.  [or at least bag.]  And I would sit there and wonder what people thought about me and what I was reading…

The times I had Harry Potter – “Does he think I’m an idiot?  Whatevs… I think he’s an idiot if he thinks I’m an idiot… Otherwise, he’s pretty cute.”

The times I was reading my favorites [Miranda July, Jonathan Safran Foer, Dave Eggers] – “Do they know what they’re missing by not being me, reading this, right now?… Also, do they know how much of a dork I am?”

The few times I was brave enough to read Anais Nin on a train – “Oh, young little hipster… If you only knew how naughty this book is… You would be way more excited about books and less about that wretched music I can hear coming from your neon headphones.”

I wish there was a train in my life to keep me reading more.  I’m only just getting to the books everyone has been telling me I HAVE to read…

I’ve taken to putting a ten dollar bill in books as a bookmark… and then when I’m finished with the book, I get to buy myself a totally selfish treat of some breed.  Incentive… because there are no trains… and I’ve recently discovered Dexter.