…you’re busy making other plans…
…you’re busy making other plans…
…you’re busy making other plans…
…back from the dead again. For as much as it counts. Thinking it’ll be different this time. This carrot will be different. Thinking that life will be good and recognition will be earned and trust will be rewarded. Love’s no different whether you go looking for it or it blindsides you. Fairness will always elude the mankind. Intelligence is the curse that it ever was. But here I still am. Buttering my fucking carrots. Hoping the end will be just a little bit better. All that keeps any of us living, realy. The hope that each ending will be a little bit better than the last. The hope that Karmic Justice will prevail but that god will forgive us all the same. Another season. Another chance. Let us wish ourselves well, hope for the best, serve up a nice wedge of carrot cake and dream that things will get better, by and by. I always loved carrots anyhow.
Gonna make a deal with the devil…
Why do we hurt the ones we love? Because they’re the only ones that will always forgive us. Now is that fair? No, it’s not at all fair. Is there a way out? The Goddess only knows. I want to do good. I want to rise above my current circumstances. I just need someone to throw me a rope because I’m drowning and I have lots of company in the waters but no hope of making it out alive. Everyone I know is drowning in the same shipwreck. It’s like the fucking Titanic. Somebody please throw me a rope. If you do, I’ll come back and rescue the rest of them, I swear. I’m drowning in debt and clutter and illness and depression and obligation and remorse. If the only way out is to peddle my one remaining asset, so be it, even if it costs me my heart’s desire or possibly my life. Better to make the gamble and maybe come away triumphant than to just die of redundancy and fatigue and hunger. I could starve myself to death more easily than most. Just a misplaced vitamin here, a lack of protein there. i could skip a certain vitamin for a few weeks and trigger a heart attack. My body chemistry is so volatile. But luckily I am fickle and my self destructive moods never last consistently long enough for me to wreak that kind of havoc. I will cheer up probably later in the day. i’ll forget. He makes me forget. He makes me smile and laugh and teaches me to make fun of my own weaknesses and brag about my strengths and see my own goodness. I need him around but not so much that I forget it’s all going to hell and I might as well jump. Maybe he does me a disservice because he makes me not want to jump. Maybe I do the same for him. Maybe we give each other false comfort when we are supposed to be being provoked into action by our misery and poverty and desperation. Sometimes making someone else happy is a sin, I think. Wanting to be happy is a sin. I don’t deserve to be happy and I know it in my bones but I crave that easy laughter like a junkie craves a fix, you can’t imagine if you’ve never felt it what it’s like to have someone look at you that way, the way he looks at me with humour and charm and irony and longing and bemusement and annoyance and camradarie and wonder all at once. Faerie lust. Seperated twin recognition. Kindergarten romance. Makes the milk leak from my breast. Makes my nerves jump. Deludes me into thinking somehow everything will be alright. But of course it won’t be. It never will be, will it? It never is.
When I was young I thought I knew what jealousy was and I thought that it could be conquered. Jealousy was the scary incongrous thing that showed up every three years or so to make false accusations and leave me curled up in a ball on the floor crying and pleading my absolute innocence. It was a small price to pay, I thought, for what appeared to be unconditional love and acceptance. It didn’t happen that often. Everybody’s a little carzy, right? So why should I expect the person I loved to be 100% sane? I went along with it. I rolled with the punches. I was a good sport. Then my life grew dimmer and lonelier and I began to realize I was damaged goods, slightly flawed merchandise that was available at a discount. That I was not loved perfectly, nor respected at all. I’d been settled for. And I met Wallace at my little inventory job. We’d ride up to Denver or down to Pueblo or La Junta with about a dozen other people, squished into the van like sardines. We’d spend a good few hours a week in transit and several performing acts of unspeakable data entry and almost immediately we bonded to the point of near inseperability. We got each other’s twisted senses of humour. We recognized in each other the grim smile that is only worn by the serially depressed. We instinctively knew it was safe to bitch to each other about our respective relationships and our fucked up childhoods and the fact that we had a nowhere job in a nowhere town where they consistently shorted our paychecks. There was definitely an underlying attraction. The air was heavy with the prospect of uncommitted crimes. The points at which our bodies touched in those crowded van seats were warm and dangerous. If we accidentally touched it felt like an electric shock or a scorpion bite. And we alternately flirted and barraged each other with insult humour and teased each other that we’d say offensive things to each other’s spouse and/or fiancee, respectively. And then Wallace disappeared one day and came back ten days later with the news that his girlfriend had dumped and moved back to Seattle to be with her kids. And then things changed. Mostly we’d still laugh and talk and even flirt a little, but there was a bitter edge to everything he said to me. A lot of conversations ended with statements like “guess you better go home to your husband and kids now.” Or “You can just get your own damned ladder. Why? Because you’re married.” I suppose a lot of it was the depression talking (yet again I ask you: why do I find depressed men so alluring?) and some of it was just that I reminded him of his ex. And I was probably a bit of a bitch to deal with myself at the time, having just plunged into the psychic aftermath of a halfhearted but neccessary abortion. After a few months Wallace announced he’d gotten another job and we spent the last three days he was there laughing and talking and even touching knees a little. He gave me his inventory vest when he left and it smelled like him. He hugged me and told me my “quasar” colored Doc Martens looked like someone had thrown up a Crayola 64 pack on them. Three months later, just after I had tended my own resignation, I showed up at work to the familiar presence of a leather jacketed fake blonde boy enveloped in a cloud of Marlborough smoke. He was standing with his back to the wall in a pair of sunglasses, looking like John Lennon in those old Astrid Kurcher Hamburg photos. For one tiny moment I was literally breathless. And then I was a joyously caffeinated little chatterbox for the next two days, until it was time to part once more. We never exchanged numbers and we completely lost touch thereafter. And though we never said anything about it the underlying reason was that even though nothing untoward ever happened we were definitely guilty of something. Thought crime in the first degree. And for the first time in my life I knew what it was to suffer the lash of jealousy and deserve every welt of it. I felt the guilt of the truly guilty. I felt as if I’d committed a grievous sin, atheist that I was. I crucified myself over it for a good many months and behaved as though I’d done something to deserve the worst of punishments. But I never let him touch me and he never even tried.
I used to be good and I used to be loyal. I think I lost my conscience somewhere around the time I lost my hope for a better future. Another day came and another person came along that seemed to know and want and understand me. And this time I was too sad and too tired to fight it and it wasn’t what sunk the ship so much as it was the destruction of the remaining lifeboats. And now Jealousy is one of my most constant companions. Jealousy follows my car around and spams up my voicemail on weekends. Jealousy calls up my friends and whines about me when it doesn’t have the guts. Jealousy embarrassed me at the bar the other night and shouted at screamed and called me a whore. Accused me of being loved, which is a most horrible crime indeed. With some men if you exhibit the slightest bit of attention and another girl is present, then you end up in Hell where you can’t even go to the fucking bar without getting followed into the bathroom and accused of devious machinations and verbally assualted in front of the jukebox by angry vicious women when you just want to play some Nirvana tunes and finish your goddamn Guinness in peace and hope that someone else you know will come in and rescue you if only to prove to the now gathering audience that possibly you might have some acquaintances that are not psychotic. And all of this over a man who doesn’t claim to love either one of us and, at least on my end, is not being asked to. I don’t want to love him and I don’t want him to love me and I certainly don’t want to be punished over something as stupid and imaginary as that. She kept shouting things like “You can just have him, then!” like she owns the title and is willing to sign it over to me and he has no say in the matter, or “I guess you two are in Love” like love is some sort of resinous goo that we’ve stepped into a puddle of and splashed all over us and we’ll never be able to wash off of our clothes. The stains will never come out. Even ultra strength Tide won’t get the love out of your laundry…Also she said we “deserve each other.” Probably she was right with that one. Probably we do deserve each other. We deserve a lot of things, not all of them nice, and “each other” is probably one of them. But I don’t want to love or be loved anymore, regardless of who it’s with and in what esteem I hold them. Love is just an excuse to take people hostage. Love is a justification for irrational anger. Love is a little box we feel justified in shoving other people into. Love is an act of devouring limitation. Love is an excuse to command and torture. The only relevance love has for me anymore is that it means I’m not allowed to talk to my friends when I most want to. Either a significant other is home and must be paid rapt attention to or a jealous ex husband is set off by god knows what or an ex-girlfriend demands a 24 hour lockdown in exchange for beer and cigarettes. See what I know? I give beer and cigarettes away for free. Apparently I’m not charging enough.
Perhaps I am a simple bitch. Perhaps I am a whore. All I know is that the clock is ticking and the rope is growing thin. I can make allowances for friends who have baggage and needy acquaintances. I’ve been in my own pair of those shoes and I hated how they fit and I don’t envy that at all. Fighting over a guy in a bar, though, smacks too much of a relationship and I’d rather gnaw my own leg off slowly over the course of a fortnight than ever have to fight over someone or endure someone’s jealousy or be anyone’s prized possession ever again. Apparently I’ve placed too many of my eggs in one basket. Apparently it’s time to diversify. There’s got to be more than one man in the world who’s intelligent and cute and would rather talk about books with me than invite his bitter ex over for weekly multihour drunken torture sessions. So what if said person doesn’t accept me or understand me unconditionally. Maybe it should just be about fucking. If it’s just about fucking it’ll probably never come to blows, right? Know any cute brainiacs with envious literary taste and no desire for longterm stability? Bonus points if they’re depressives of Celtic and/or Viking extraction. Because we all know my proclivities.I judge prospective lovers these days by the cadence of their voices the quickness of their laughter and the size, quality, and content of their bookcases. My ex didn’t read anymore and ultimately I think that’s what doomed us. He didn’t read. I slept with somebody that did. Maybe it’s as simple as that. I am a bookslut indeed. Will whore for works of relevant fiction. I am the Harlot who haunts the Borders. Fear me. Ha!
I ask very, very little. That doesn’t mean I want nothing. So maybe I’ve got it all wrong. Maybe I should stop being so easy going and understanding and then I won’t ever be in a position to be treated like a doormat again. Maybe failure to be demanding is essentially saying to a guy “your needs and quirks and intricacies are way more important than anything to do with stupid little me. Which is why they are repeatedly baffled when I make any sort of request at all and stunned when I react negatively to their inevitable failure to fulfill said request. Maybe it’s my own fault, I don’t know. All I know is that I never, EVER want to hear anything approximating the following phrases ever again:
“Can we just order pizza for our anniversary dinner?”
“I know we RSVPd a month ago but can we blow off the party? I’m tired.”
“Let’s skip Christmas presents this year. It’ll save so much money and I don’t really care about presents.”
Perhaps I ask too much. Perhaps my only sexual appeal is in that doormat type quality. But damned if the next guy I date won’t be required to fake a little enthusiasm when I enter a room.
When I swore I’d never write about this, I guess I lied.
The part of it that none of you will ever understand, that I can never explain, is how much it hurt. The absolute bloocurdling, mindsplitting, unfathomable pain of my guts spilling out into my body cavity and my spine all but snapped in half and still somehow I’m struggling to get on my feet, I’m smiling, I’m politely asking to be allowed to just go to sleep, just for one minute, and I’m fading fast and my blood pressure’s dropped to almost zero and I cannot wrap my head around how much it hurts. I think I’m going to go mad, I think I’m going to split in two. The human nervous system is not equipped to process this sort of pain. And yet there I was, coherent and reasonable and asking softly if please they could just let me close my eyes, if please they could just put me under. And they’re begging me, pleading with me to stay awake, because if I close my eyes I might never wake up and I think at some point my mind just snapped. I don’t think I really came back to my senses for months after that. I don’t know if I ever really came all the way back at all. Apparently I was moments away from dying. I was bleeding to death. I somehow stayed awake until the operating table where they cut my skirt off even though they’d already cleaned the surgical area, presumably for dramatic effect. And there on the operating table, on my deathbed, I was yelling at them about ruining my good black skirt and then I begged them again to put me under and this time they did and I woke up sore and disoriented in a dull morphine haze in a hospital bed, still not really getting it. I asked if I could go back to school the next day. Two months and most of a vital organ later, I would emerge from my Chrysalis a torn and jaded moth and all I could think about was at least I would be thin now because that’s the sort of fucked up thing a teenage girl thinks of at times like that. Like I’d won some sort of liposuction lottery or something. But jesus holy fuck I could never even begin to explain how much it hurt. I myself can’t fathom it. It just fucking hurt so bad. It isn’t the nearly dying or the isolation or the uncertainty of the thing that got to me. I’ve known a number of people who’ve faced death or been sick or been traumatized. But I’ve never known another soul who could understand how much it hurt. It just fucking hurt so badly. I hope I’ve described it inadequately because I wouldn’t wish that kind of suffering on anyone, even a pale ghost of it. But I’ve never committed it to print until now and I wonder if it’ll somehow help me to do so. They always say write what you know and maybe this is what I know better than anything. So there it is. It hurt. It just fucking hurt. It hurt so bad. I can’t begin to tell you how much it hurt…wow, that feels better somehow.
So, um, have a nice day?
Sorry about all that.
I don’t know where that came from. I’m not even having a particularly bad day or anything. It just worked itself up out of some long buried scar tissue and – there it is. Funny how the human mind works. I don’t think I ever even really remembered what it exactly felt like until just now. I mean obviously I had some idea it had been unfathomably painful, but I hadn’t quite remembered the details of it in quite so intricate a matter.Kind of surprised at myself, actually.