Wednesday, April 25, 2012

grabbing dollars in Ditkaland: part one

One desperate winter, I worked for the Chicago Bears.
I was a quasi-personal assistant for this mobster type union boss that winter, and it was a joke. It had been the only job on Chicago craigslist requiring union organizing experience and I was probably the one person who had any that applied, so I was it. I'd been unemployed for five months and living in Chicago for two already, so I really needed something, anything to kick my 22 year old momentum back in gear. The actual job required very little knowledge of anything union related and I was paid unreliably, under the table. My tasks could include anything from designing a catalogue of union-made items for the local members to driving my bosses brand new Benz through the bustle of downtown Chicago to drop him off or pick him up from his lawyers office, or the doctor, or anywhere he was. If he showed up at all. Most days he didn't bother to show up at all so I'd sit on the sixteenth floor peering down at the city and panicking about money, which I had none of. When my boss did show up for work it was usually for periods of less than 15 minutes and would almost always involve him telling me we were going to lunch at Gene and Georgettis, a place where people like the owner of the Chicago Sun Times had lunch. Important people. Rich people. Powerful people. People who were not me.
I met the owner of the Sun Times one day. I was under dressed.
Missed opportunities abounded during my times in the windy city.
I'd always order the cheapest thing on the menu at these lunches, some kind of salad, because I honestly never knew who was paying. I never did. I'd shake hands with everyone to whom I was introduced. Everyone from the restaurant owner to the valet would greet my boss with a man hug. I felt like dead weight, dragging myself along behind him.
People were constantly giving my boss presents. Some expensive cologne here, some Gucci cuff links there. And the booze. Bottles of vodka and wine would materialize out of nowhere and he always just shrugged and passed it along to me. He never took any of the booze himself, claiming he only drank Kettle One. He liked me because I was young and always around when he needed me, but I think I was secretly a disappointment to him. Here I wanted to grow a union, what I'd been hired for, and all he wanted to talk about was where all the hot parties were in the city and where I'd gone out the night before. I was too embarrassed to tell him I wasn't really the club type, or in any sort of 'know,' so I made up stories. Really, I'd walk down to this dive called Estelle's, the closest place to my apartment in Wicker Park, and drink alone a lot of times. They were open until 4am, so I rarely left Wicker.
One day my boss asked me if I wanted to work for the Bears at home games for like 20 dollars an hour or something and of course I said yes. I figured it'd be more of the shady shit he already had me doing, but I was pleasantly surprised when they handed me a W-2 on my first day. Not that I wanted to pay taxes, I was just psyched that they were going to pay me in something other than  expensive salads and handshakes and bottles of red wine. I love those things, but they don't pay the bills or the parking tickets.
And I was quickly accumulating parking tickets and living in perpetual fear of The Boot.
I was instructed to show up at nine in the morning for a Sunday noon game, given only a gate number. Naturally, I had my roommate try to drop me off at the Bear's stadium on a game day and it was a fucking zoo and I ended up walking around to the lakeside as far as I possibly could from the place I was dropped off. It's freezing and the lake effect is all up in my face and the wind is stabbing me maniacally through my coat. I'm wearing ballet flats with no socks and a pathetic excuse for gloves. 45 minutes later and I'm practically crying in pain, pacing around, looking pathetic or deranged or both, probably, and still no one has shown up.
Improper footwear has been a trending commonality for most of the physical discomfort I've suffered in my life.
I try calling my boss like four times but of course he can't be bothered to answer and I finally give up on getting a hold of him because I don't want to be annoying and desperate. Except I'm freezing and I want to go home and watch trashy tv on the DVR with my roommate on the couch, where it's warm. Obviously. But I reason with myself that I really CAN'T do that because I don't even have money to pay rent this month and this five hours of work will be almost a hundred dollars. And because the one thing I have left going my way is that I honor my commitments.
And also I have no idea how I'm going to get across town anyway.
So I stand around and freeze my ass off and wish I had thicker gloves.
To be continued......

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

the long and short of it.

Let me start this post off by saying sorry that I'm about to be waaaaaay more self indulgent than usual.


Because this happened, minus actually getting rid of any of my clothes. But believe you me, a mass clothes purging will occur before I leave for Montana on August 1st. Yup. The date is set, giddythefuckup.

But we're not talking about big plans and 'eff yeahs!' right now.

We're talking about how ridiculous cutting off all of your hair to make yourself feel better actually is.

Let's take a few steps down memory lane. Hy hair's memory lane

Just playing a little table golf and throwing back some shots whilst having and AWESOME pony tail day.

No idea when this was taken, but HOT DAMN. I must have been really bored at work. I'm actually kind of embarrassed that I even have a picture like this on my phone, but LOOK AT MY HAIR, how can I possibly NOT post this? It almost makes up for the fact that I'd obviously blown off makeup that day.

Debatng a center part. Documenting my outfit. Contemplating bangs. No big. Just a usual day.

In December, at a friends wedding. MY HAIR LOVED TO PARTY. RIP party hair.  

This is what happens when I make decisions wihle semi-manic.

I have to take emo angle pics for it to not look terrible.

And my pony tail now looks like a baby turd or something. It's teeny. And it's got to be a low pony because other wise shit falls apart. So. This will be the last time I complain about it, but just know, I don't count this as one of my wiser decisions.

Monday, April 23, 2012

a dream, an airport, a cat. in that order.

Last night I had an odd and semi-disturbing dream involving a minivan, a park near my hometown, a very confusing trip to the grocery store and/or possibly someone's grandmother's house, and one of my college roomates.  I woke up at 5:30 to my dad calling to let me know that my parent's and brother's plane had landed and I should leave now to pick them up at the airport. As I brushed my teeth and stumbled out to my parent's Suburban to complete the last leg in bringing them home from vacation in Hawaii, I was legitimately confused about what was real life and was was dream life. And then the speedometer didn't work my entire drive to the airport. It was kind of a weird morning.

Anyway, my parents were supposed to get home yesterday, but they got stuck in Hawaii another day due to mechanical failures on the plane or something, which if it weren't for the extra hours spent in an airport with an eleven year old (my dear brother, Charlie), would make them the luckiest vacationers ever. I never get stuck in Hawaii another night on the airline's dime. But I did get stuck in Denver for an extra night on their dime once, and that was rad. Except I got sick on the way home. But that could have been a hangover. It's anyone's guess.

While my parents were gone I watched their pooch and the house and the cat who also lives there. She's kind of a bitch. But we love her. But seriously, she's a cat, so strike one and two right there.

Yesterday I was hanging out on the back porch and she would not leave me alone. I'm reading The Vanishers right now, which is riveting, and she kept swatting it away so I would pet her more. So, strike three.

Just kidding, she was being uncharacteristically adorable and we had a mini photo-shoot right then and there. Of which I'll only subject you to one snap. You're welcome.

Meet Greta, this is her version of Blue Steel.  Also note my hood status. It prevents people from seeing what I've done to my hair. Yeah. That happened.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

sorry i'm not sorry.

This morning I was typing a response email to one of my best friends when I realized it was becoming a bit of a rant. Now let me be clear, I am the queen of the rant. Give me a subject and I will find a way to go on and on about it forever. So,  that part was not alarming or unusual- But as I skimmed back over my response I realized this was a rant centered at the wrong person and somewhat misplaced.
And I think one of the reasons why I'm so incredibly frustrated right now finally hit me.
I feel it acutely, about everything. Almost constantly.
Let me also point out that I am also one of the most empathetic, considerate, understanding people I know. I am accommodating. Yes, I will listen to your side of the story even if I'm running late. Sure, let's take care of your to-do list first. I can make mine up later. NO, don't worry about it, I don't want to inconvenience you.
It wasn't until after I typed these couple of paragraphs that I realized this may be a problem. or I may be onto something:
I'm looking forward to moving to Montana and being my own boss without guilt. Without guilt from my parents, from my siblings, my friends, from Matt, from random people I know that I see around randomly, etc. FUCK everyone. I feel guilty every second of every day for things I do and things I don't do, and for just BEING. For wanting what I want. For needing what I need.

I need to get away from whatever is causing me to feel this way, and right now, it's everyone.

Yesterday I almost didn't put an Obama sticker that I got for free on my car because I got to thinking and I didn't want to offend anyone at work or my parents or Matt. Why do I feel any guilt whatsoever for what I believe is right? I'm not being abrasive about it. It's a stupid sticker! I support this person! Why can't I express that? They sure as fuck don't feel any guilt about cutting my ideas down. I have worked for that man tirelessly the past TWO ELECTIONS and I'm educated and informed and I give a fuck. Why should I ever, EVER feel guilty? Still. I do. For being different. For not being able to see what they see. For caring and getting upset when they tell me I'm wrong.

Sorry, I'm getting kind of emotional.

But honestly, one of the top three emotions I feel daily is guilt. And I'm so tired. It exhausts me.

So you know, Montana won't solve all my problems. But I think it will let me mend myself. I think it will let me DO THINGS and think things and live without being totally overwhelmed around every corner by guilt. I hope so much that it will teach me that I am okay. I am fine. I am not wrong for being the way that I am. I need to learn how to pursue my own interests again for the sake of enjoyment. I need to learn that my own enjoyment isn't something that should make me feel guilt.

Somehow, even when I'm not religious I'm still so goddamn Catholic.
Sure, sometimes I make decisions are are stupid and I deserve to feel guilty about them. As compassionate as I am capable of being, I am equally able to be selfish and bitchy when the mood strikes.
But I feel like I have to squelch who I am and apologize for that person almost constantly.
In truth, I like the person that I am.
I like myself. I said it. I'm not sorry.
That said, as much as I hate admitting I'm wrong, I know when I do something inconsiderate. At those times, feeling guilty is a mechanism that helps bring me back to myself, it's a meter of how far I've strayed from the person I strive to be. It's uncomfortable, but it's a feeling that reminds me that I care, that I'm human, that I made the wrong decision. In those times, I'm grateful for my ability to feel guilt. For the way I can reel myself back.
But right now, the meter is broken. Constant guilt is making me question the person that I am and doubt the person that I've always tried to be. And in turn, I feel guilty for doubting myself. So what we have is one overflowing, steamy, disgusting pile of guilt.
And I don't know what to do about it.

Monday, April 16, 2012

help i'm alive.

It's a work night.

I need to be dressed and combed and sitting up straight in my cubicle at eight tomorrow morning. It's not that far away, but right now it's never going to come. I change my clothes while I'm driving away from work. It's not coming, I just left. I'm shaking with anxiety. I'm riddled with energy. I'm doing this. I'm doing this. It's fine.

It's not tomorrow. It's tonight and now five us are are crammed into Katherine's little red car and we're racing east toward the state line. We'll scream with glee as we streak under the arch and keep catapulting forward, onward onward.

We're drinking sweet cheap wine out of water bottles like it's our life blood. There's an entire box, maybe more between us. We're on a mission.  Daring each other to be the one to take a breather. Passing the bottle as fast as we can. And we're screaming the words to the songs wailing out of the speakers as Jessica steers the careening vessel and plays DJ, our hair whipping unpredictably in the wind, aloof and free.

We're racing the clock faster faster, we're holding in our bladders and willing the gas gauge not to drop. We don't have a second to spare. We've got to hurry, the show will start without us there to cheer and dance and sing. The show must go on.

I'd been feeling so old lately, commuting and counting pennies and ironing my pants. My eyes feel older from staring at spreadsheets instead of horizon lines and rear view mirrors. I feel lodged into something immovable and unforgiving, not held or embraced, but rather, trapped. Embedded into a surface that makes me feel like a shard of who I want to be. Splintered off from the whole. I used to move so fast. Now I'm sleeping through my waking hours. But tonight I feel awake. Tonight I'm doing something irresponsible and I feel like myself again.

The purple rims of my heart shaped sunglasses keep staining the edges of everything I see, Framing the flat landscape into something pleasurable. It's been so long since I felt like I was in the right place at exactly the right time. And this right place is a speeding bullet, filled with the people who furnish the home I hold in my heart.

We're laughing so hard I wish I could remember the joke. We'll beat the sun to our point on the horizon.
I'll never feel hungry again so long as this feeling is filling me up. I'm holding it in my mouth, I'm biting down on its sustenance. I feel so full.

I spill red wine down my chin and we go into a laughing fit. I can hardly hear what they're saying, these people I love, but I can read their minds. I know what you mean. That look tells me everything I'll ever need to know. I remember the corners of my mouth, wine streaming down my chin on both sides and I swipe at my wet skin with the back of my hands. Stains on my face like Dracula, stains on my hands like a murderer. Tattoos from this night. I wish they'd never fade. Stay sticky forever.

We make it and we're running and stumbling and talking so loud down the street toward the show, the cement old and weathered, pocked with imperfections. We can't relate. It's a dance we're doing together, moving down the sidewalk, slick salty limbs. Sunglasses in the dark. We're fine. We're fine. We're going an infinite distance in every direction just because we can. No one understands us the way we understand each other.

 It's dark and cool and there are so many bodies. We lose each other, but not really.

More! More! More!

What time will we home tonight? Three? Four? It's never mattered. The instant I got into the car tonight I knew it didn't matter. I remind myself.

We're singing and dancing and slugging back bourbon. But none of this crowd could ever be so loud, so bright as our race against the sun to get there. Three hours of soaking in each other.

"We're so close, to something better left unknown."

Goddamn right. I swing myself around. Goddamn right...

I sit in my cube at 7:59. Bleary eyed. Sit up straight, Sara. My body feels like everything it's doing is on an echo. Twice, three times I feel myself sit down in my chair, each time the sensation fades a little more. I'm perfectly still. I will my hands to type in my passwords. I'm running on sensory memory.

In the dark, on our way back, we pulled over in the side of the highway. I'm retching. It's hot. It's cold. Erin flounces out of the car and suddenly she's running backwards to catch her balance, but she can't get behind her legs fast enough and she falls. Legs in the air. Without missing a beat, there are arms reaching out to her.  Always long enough.

A swell of laughter and then we're all packed in again, moving. Homeward. My head across a lap. We're somehow already there.

time for a photo dump. you're welcome.

I'm wounded. And by wounded I mean branded, because at 25 my friends and I STILL apparently think that's a good idea after like three glasses of wine.
Here is Easter Mass with my family. My dad insisted on holding the baby. Lucky I was seated right next to him, so I was blissfilly occupied tickling feet and holding hands with Florence. My parents are cute.
My brothers are also really into Florence, even when she's sleeping. It's really adorable.

I made Matt hold the baby since she was changing hands like a hot potato. He is particularly nervous about 'the transition,' but once the baby is safely transferred into his arms, he's a natural.

Pre-branding. Just an innocent night with the gals. Before it turned into an after school special/Smokey the Bear public service anouncement.
My parents are in Hawaii this week, so I'm watching the dog. He's clearly distraught over their absense.
I would have put like 200 more pictures of Florence in this post because she's my neice, so she's automatically the cutest baby ever born, but I'll spare you for now.
See, here we are hanging out. GIRL TIME.
I bought her those choice shades. She's already so fashion forward.
Matt bought me a gun recently because he knows me well. Soon after, we went to test her out and it was thrilling. I can't believe I've lived all this time without a rifle.

This is from Florence's first photoshoot. She was three days old. She's so much more photogenic than I am. I think she gets her strong interest in feminism from me and her mom. Buckle up, little one. This lovely snapshot is thanks to this talented lady: source

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

how to let yourself be happy.

It's harder than it sounds, letting yourself be happy. Especially for someone like me. Sometimes I think I get off on living in the shadows and clawing around like a feral animal. Maybe because it's easier. Maybe because wrapping my arms around my vices and holding them hard, closer to myself than any one actual person, is enough of a risk without exposing myself. Even for one second. One camera flash in the dark would still paint a perfect picture of all the things I work so hard to keep in dim light.
But this isn't really about my affinity for finding myself a crater and springing into it head first as far as my mind will take me into the realm of doom and gloom. No, this is about something entirely different. It's about letting myself be happy.  Maybe it is kind of about both.
You see, despite a happy childhood, I've grown into an adult with a perpetual chip on my shoulder toward the world. I don't want to be that guy, not really.
Sometimes I still give myself the old pass card, explain my misery as cynicism that I've somehow earned, allow myself to believe that anyone less miserable shows a remarkable lack of depth. DO YOU SEE WHAT'S GOING ON IN THE WORLD? WIPE THAT SMILE OFF YOUR STUPID FACE.  I actually let myself believe that I'm smart and everyone happy doesn't get it. You know what? That's just fucking embarrassing.  This really isn't about depth, is it? It's just as shallow to believe that my snotty bad attitude makes me somehow better, superior.
The more I think about it, the more I'd like to be a shard of sunshine on a hardwood floor that the dog sprawls his body asleep across in the afternoon. That feeling in your guts when a letter appears out of nowhere from a long lost friend. Something shiny. The tickle on your nose from the bubbles coming off a freshly poured glass of champagne. A reason to be brighter, stand up straighter.
And I mean, I'm not a terrible person to be around. I laugh. I joke. I smile at strangers. But man, my mind is a different story.
A solid and familiar state of misery is the hardest addiction I've ever had to tackle. Sometimes even on good days I can sense a landslide coming and three hours later I'm still trying to get myself lost on roads that I already know better than the backs of my hands. I never really end up getting anywhere, literally or figuratively.
I was reading a novel recently and the characters are arguing and something comes up along the lines of:  We are humans! We are not the weather! And that's true, we're not the weather. We have some sense of control over our actions. We don't have to unleash cold rain on someones peaceful easy feeling. But just because I don't do something that causes another person pain doesn't mean that just under that surface there isn't a storm raking through my entire being.
And even though March was phenomenal and my life is going in a direction that feels right and promising, I still feel this intense urge to sabotage it. To crumble it up into a ball, all of it, and just throw it into a fire. Gather the ashes and scatter them around haphazardly as I dance around on the hot coals, burning my feet, But at least giving myself a reason for cry.
How can this be real, do you see? I'll rub my nose in it after I'm through, just to make sure I'm thoroughly punished for my negligence.
You know, sometimes I go to the park for hours and read, an activity that I love. But I'll do it until my eyes hurt so bad that I can hardly keep them open when I get home. Part of me thinks it's because I'd rather be lost in a world of strangers that are indifferent to my existence and living their lives fully independently of what I would do to them than home with a real living person that actually adores me, who I'm bound to disappoint. Who is willing to take all the things terrible and wonderful that I have to offer and believes fully that the return is always greater than the cost no matter what. It's so much messier to actively participate.
And I mean, as terrible as that is to say, how can I not say it?
I blame myself for not falling on my knees in joy for all the Universe has offered up to me freely. What reason do I have to be unhappy? How do I dare perpetuate this negativity? And then guilt. And crippling anxiety. And more misery. Because nothing is anything if not a cycle.
And so I struggle. I struggle for the place where despite the fact that I'm drawn like a magpie to fastest route toward poking the tender places until I'm in too much pain to even move, that instead I reach desperately for a gritty happiness of my own. No, it's probably not sugarcoated and covered in glitter and shiny with perfectly dusted surfaces and organized drawers. But you know, it's light. Naturally lit with gaping open windows that look like mouths inhaling and exhaling in the breeze.. There's music playing, but not too loud because I want to hear everything under it too. The signs of life. There's a worn couch and my feet are tucked under the person that I share my heart with, and he's keeping them warm. We hold hands while we watch Parks and Rec. Sometimes we laugh at the same parts, and sometimes different ones.  And our dog is actually lying at our feet calmly. Sometimes we wink at each other, just to make sure we're both paying attention to this perfect moment. And I remind myself that it is enough. Of course it is.
So this is how I let myself be happy. Or at least this is how I grab my machete and blaze a small and inconsequential path through a place that all at once terrifies and lures me. Here is how I go out the other side instead of straight to the middle, into the thick of it.
I make mistakes. I do what feels good. I sing along to the radio sometimes just to drown out my thoughts. I give entire life stories to the people I see in stores and various other places I happen to be. I surprise Matt with gifts just for the hell of it, because he won't know what to say. Because it will make him happy. I read. I write about how tempting it is to get stuck in the middle of something dark, because it forces me to admit that I can't rationalize throwing away everything I've been given. I laugh at how much it hurts to be human. And then I cry about how wonderful it is to have access to all the emotions and thoughts that we do. The spectrum. And I realize that I'll never be bored, that even when I thought I was, for all that time, I was really just resisting the fight.
And so it's a fight, despite how the title of this post may deceive. If it were as easy as letting myself be happy, I would. But for me, it's not. So every day that I feel strong enough, I fight.

Monday, April 9, 2012


No one is on gchat and I still have an hour left at work and I'm about to do something drastic. (after work, of course)
With my hair.
So I mean, hair can really only be so drastic unless you're Britney Spears circa 2007, but still.  And by then did anyone really care anymore anyway? I know I didn't. Sorry Brit.
By drastic I mean I'm possibly going to get a very unflattering bob-type short cut. It's flattering on other people, but the chances it will be flattering on me are what I'm more concerned about. Which, I know I've been growing my hair out for two fucking years or whatever and it's a waste and it looks really goddamn good in a fishtail braid these days, like viral on pinterest good, but come on. my hair is not growing. Maybe it's not meant to be long. It certainly doesn't want to be any longer than it is now. I've tried. I'm sick to death of trying. I want a change. Pronto. 
So you now, a shaggy bob would be a change. I know I'm not really thin enough to pull off this kind of hair cut for the most flattering effects and I lament that fact, but I can only care so much when I've basically already made up my mind. Plus being thin is never really one of the drives for any choices that I make in life. Honestly. I can convince myself that it will be motivation to starve or eat healthier or something but that's not really the point. Since it's not really something I'm ultimately worried about.
The point is that I'm bored with my hair and I'm going to possibly do something drastic.
I'm at the point right this second where I hate literally everything that I have to wear on top of that. It's normally not an issue but today it's an issue. It's because I'm a spoiled brat, probably, but it's a little late to change at this point.
I'm sincerely tempted to go home and place all of my clothes in trash bags and drop them off at Goodwill. Except for my 'Hank Williams Jr Tour 1984' tee shirt that I bought at some hispter thrift store in Wicker Park on credit for waaaaaay too much money even though I couldn't afford it. Because it was an investment and it's a conversation piece and I'm keeping that shit forever. I'll also probably keep several dresses, including a vintage Dolce and Gabbana that I found in a tiny boutique up near our old lake house that I've worn to every occasoin that requires thurough gussying up ever since. That shit was expensive too and it hugs my curves perfectly whether I'm ten up or ten down on the 'feel good about myself' scale. Consequently both garments are black, which coincides well with my new years resoluations for the year. I've also drank spectacular amounts of champagne in both items, which I take as another sign that they need to stay.
But everything else has to go. Even that turquiose fleece with the bright yellow zipper pull that's two sizes too large in men's, which I practically camp out in all winter. I love that thing. To death. But today, I would toss it into a trashbag with the rest.
I sincerely hope matt has the good sense to hide the trashbags before I get home. And actually hide them so I can't find them by just looking in a different cabinet or maybe even lock them in his car or something. because today I'm not fucking around. I want to purge my entire closet.
And I can't really afford to buy new clothes and the Dolce dress will only be acceptable so many days in a row and it's probably frowned upon to show up to work in old ratty tshirts or nothing at all.
Plus. i'm already going to look whacked out enough after I get through chopping my hair to hell.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

i cannot talk to the people downstairs.

Okay let's talk about social skills for a minute.

My social skills. Or lack of.

See, I'm basically a pretty intelligent human being. I read oodles of books and keep updated on current events and I'm empathetic. So you know, you'd think I'd have the ability to make basic conversation with pretty much everyone with whom I come into contact.

And usually that's the case. Especially after I knock back a couple of beers and start chatting up randos for the hell of it.

Because I'm social too, see?

I'm social and I'm at least minimally smart and booze gives me courage, so I'm all kinds of fun to be around. I make friends faster than people grow alarmed and reactionary over global pandemics. I'm not actually sure about the last part.

I'm contagious. I'm a pandemic. PEOPLE LIKE ME. You're getting this?

Cool, because now I'm about to fuck up everything you think you know.

I AM SO AWKWARD IT HURTS ME. Sometimes. Like I said, not always. But you know, enough that it's a thing.

This isn't like an omg I need to be medicated because I'm crippled with anxiety or omgz I'm standing in the corner at a middle school dance waiting for someone to talk to me because I'm the new kid.

This is like. Ugh. Let me describe a scenario. And before I do I just want to say that maybe this is all just the biproduct of a little too much inner dialogue, a little too much sobriety introversoin.

So I work at this job right. I'm part of the upstairs people. There are five of us. We handle paper shitstorms and tap on our computer keys and basically wreck our vision and insure ourselves carpel tunnel later in life for approximately eight hours per day. Also we're not really encouraged to make any noise of any kind. Ever. I've got pictures of my loved ones hanging in my cubicle and a space heater under my desk, I'm a sweater over the back of my desk chair 'just in case' away from frumpy at this point. Oh my god, I almost forgot. We also give ourselves papercuts a lot. Actually, that might just be me. Really not vital to the story.


Then there are downstairs people. These people are not chained to their cubicles for eight hours a day and they're allowed to talk to each other. They wear actual business clothes and make an effort with their hair. IN FACT, many of them don't even have cubicles, but rather, OFFICES, WITH DOORS. Doors that can be closed. Who knows what they do. I don't, because they have the power to close their doors and shut out the world. Also, they often have 'meetings' at other buildings so they get to get into their cars and drive away and be elsewhere for a lot of the time. They converse with people in ways that aren't limited to passive-aggressive emails. They sell things. Or something.

It's all very confusing. Probably because of all the closed doors.

I feel a great deal of resentment toward these people, naturally, because they are allowed to talk and they have offices with doors and they get to drive away and they make more money than I do despite the fact that as far as I can tell they are basically bottom feeders with superiority complexes and not as smart as I am.

I'm not for sure on the intelligence level, just a prediction. But I mean, I'm almost always right. Take that as you will. Plus they aren't really that nice to us upstairs people and kind of all all-important. Like we're their minions and we have to drop everything and help them anyway, so why should they bother learning how to use the color copier? When I'm over here thinking "Oh my god, seriously?" And a lot of other pretty bad stuff.

Oky, here's where my awkwardness comes in.

I think I've lost the ability to converse with these people. It just slipped through my fingers one day and now it's gone. I can't/won't look them in the eyes when they address me. I'm actually really jumpy when they talk to me at all. I don't address then first. Ever. One of them said good morning to me this morning in the kitchen while my back was turned and I was pouring my coffee and shit went everywhere because I was so startled. Well, coffee went everywhre, but you get the idea.

It's gotten to the point where I walk downstairs to get more coffee and take routes back upstairs that don't have me passing anyone. I actually avoid coming into contact with these people.

I'm sure they don't set out every morning to leave me feeling inadequate every time we speak to each other, but really, that's what I get out of it. I've lost the ability to interact.

I walked past two ladies about my age downstairs on my second trip to the coffee machine this morning and I just smiled into space as I walked past them. I mean, I don't want to scowl like a bitch, but I don't want to talk to them either. So I guess looking like a maniac is the obvious solution for that.


I used to be this crazed, confident, devour the world person and now I cannot even look the people that work downstairs straight in the face?

This place is bad for me.

Thank G I'm only here three more months.

And I've already started to fantasize about what I'd like to say on my way out, but I would never probably actually say because it's riddled with curse words and really not prudent.

But you know, that's a post for another day.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

fickle march, fickle me

maybe i need to stop taking emo pics and actually work through my emotions. nahhhh.

The other morning on my way to work I sat through an entire red light without realizing my right turn signal was blinkblinkblinking away. I was going straight. I flipped it off as I accelerated through the light and looked around sheepishly at the other cars to see if anyone was pissed and/or making obscene gestures at me. Guess everyone was feeling pretty tame that morning because I didn't get a single side-eye. Maybe they thought it was a late April Fools joke. A cheap leftover.
I guess I lost myself there for a second in contemplating what a good month March was to me this year. To tell the truth, I've never really had any real affinity toward Spring. I get it, I get it. Rebirth, life, emerging on the other side of Winter. It's all well and good to see green again and to not feel like my fingers and ears are going to fall off every time I step outside, but really, I'm in it for Summer. Spring is just another thing to endure before blistering heat, minimal clothing, and the promise of campfires and sunshine and reading while partially submerged in water.
Spring is fickle. It changes its mind too often, threatens to give my psyche whiplash. It's soggy and tumultuous, despite the hardy daffodils and magnolias that quickly remind us of all to come and then fade until next year.They're a treat, but they're not made to last.  No wonder Picses are the way that they are, they kick off Spring. Anyone born at the start of such a finicky season is bound to brood. And yet, I'm attracted to the depth and the endless rollercoaster ride that the Picses in my life take me on. As I've mentioned probably a hundred times, I'm a summer soul through and through.  I usually have no use for finicky March. For the battle of rain and sun, warm and cold.  Why should I? I know who is going to win out, let's get on with the next.
I sometimes feel like my entire life is a series of waiting to get on with the next.
I don't know, I mean, I make as much effort as the next guy to really be present in the moment and enjoy where I am, but the fact of the matter is that I'm like a half-starved animal- I'm always reaching, stretching, grasping, struggling for more. Just a little further. Just a little tiny bit more. Just just just just.
Just slow down, Sara.
Let's consider real life for a moment.
Have I mentioned recently that I'm moving to Montana in a few short months? Yeah. That's happening. In my mind I'm so overwhelmed by the fact that I'm going to pacify this internal pull to run to the mountains that I don't even know where to start here. What can I do but wait until it's finally time?
I know this thinking isn't productive. It doesn't encourage lists or tying up loose ends or force me to grapple with leaving the life I've forged here. It's so confusing that I don't feel joy or sadness or anything really. Just the knowledge that I'm going, the impatience that I'm not there yet, and the dull sinking feeling that comes with knowing that there is so much to do before I depart. But I feel sort of stuck, like there's nothing I can do right in this exact moment in time, and that frustration feels raw and itchy. It's a rash I wear constantly. It's distracting and demanding. It takes so much effort and will power to keep it at bay.
And this is the line I dream of:
"Let there be rock and roll on the dashboard rado; let there be occasional hands bongoing on the dashboard. Let that white line in the middle of the far west two-lane highway come feeding into the screen..." -Jack Kerouac
My soul is so far away from my body and right now I feel ugently that, for once, it is crucial that my soul and body inhabit the same plane.
And yet March was wonderful and wild. I planted bulbs and pulled weeds and watched little green tongues poke through the soil, so hungry for sunlight. I welcomed a member of my family and watched my sister become a mother, a role she falls into so naturally that I'm once again shocked that we can at the same time be so alike and so differerent. I got accepted into school and decided on a new life path. I had serious conversations with Matt about our future, read many delightful books, saw one of my favorite bands in concert, and painted some beautiful pictures. I started running again and told my boss that I'm gone by summer's end and cheered my alma mater all the way to the final four. I celebrated the birthdays of my sister and brother and got a sun tan on my face and arms from a week straight of 80 degree days.
March was full, you guys.
Full of good.
It deserved to be treasured and polished for memory.
So why do I feel so distracted by something I can't pull out of my periphery? It's right there, but I can't catch it staring straight on.

checking in.

I'm here.
I've just been hating everything I write. It lacks something and I'm frustrated.
When it comes, it pours out of me and onto the page as fast as my fingers can hit the keys.
But when it's like it is now, a battle, it's like squeezing moisture drop by drop out of a damp washcloth to try to fill a lake. I would have said ocean, but that seemed a little dramatic.
Happy Wednesday, here's hoping the second half of the week will bring me words by the bucketful.