Wednesday, April 29, 2009

I don't know any French people . . .

. . . but I sure do get a kick out of the way they think. Brilliant. Read the Objectif Lune piece.




Saturday, April 25, 2009

It really is like riding a bicycle . . .

Not sex, but rather, driving a car.

I am cat sitting this weekend. A friend and her husband needed a last minute cat sitter in order for them to make their annual trip to the New Orleans' Jazz Fest. I jumped at the chance. Time alone in a nice house in one of the few charming neighborhoods in Austin? And I get to stay with two cute cats? I jumped at the chance. In addition, I get use of one of the two hybrid vehicles owned by the family. (They are both college professors. Makes sense now, doesn't it?)

So I filled up the tank with gas and drove to my father's grave. I hadn't seen it before, and I'm not really sure why I wanted to, but I did. The anniversary of my father's death is also the day of my birth. Talk about cursed luck?

I didn't really get emotional and I only cried a little. My mother has been to my father's grave twice and had once attempted to make me feel better (maybe I was at a low point, I'm not sure) by saying that he was in a very lovely spot. Well, he, or his remains rather, are in fact in a very lovely little soft rolling hill which, because of the recent rains, is soft with fresh green grass. His stone was a simple white granite of the type seen in Arlington National Cemetery. My father is buried in a veteran's cemetery. When my mother had tried to describe my father's resting place to me I was far too abupt, rude surely, and said, "Mother, he's dead. I don't think he cares where they put him." I quickly apologized.

Daddy issues.

One of my coworkers (the obnoxious writer) and I had a conversation about parents and my father came up. "Daddy issues" was the way he belittled my preoccupations. "I've got bigger problems than Daddy Issues. My mother and I have serious problems." Oh really? I tore into him. "Well my father is fucking dead asshole! I can't try and 'address' anything with him. That's done. If there were things I should have said to him, there are no fucking do-overs. You, you at least have the opportunity to try and right whatever it is you feel is wrong with your mother. She breathes. If you want another chance, it's still there. The only thing stopping you is you. Try doing any of that when she's dead."

My coworker didn't say anything else to me.

I've known my father was dead. Yet somehow, there was something very final about seeing his headstone. The inscription says, "Gone, but not forgotten." I don't know who chose it. I know it wasn't me. I like it though. It's really rather appropriate, because try as I might, I can't seem to forget him or remember that it's okay to let go of any of my anger toward him, and that it's even okay to just cry when I miss him and thank him for the gifts he did give me. I dance, I sing, and I groove along to the beat of my own twisted drummer because I inherited a little bit of soul from a man who once knew what it was to live life with simple joy. In the end he traded all of that in for hard drugs and hard drinking and died too soon, but he used to live, he used to laugh, and he used to dance. He shared these things with me, they are my father's legacy barreling through my veins.

I may not be rich, powerful, or beautiful . . . but I'm a singing, dancing, and loving fool because I learned from a beautiful man that it's okay to be that way.

Monday, April 20, 2009

You know it's bad when . . .

. . . the most exciting thing that happens to you is the arrival of your newest magazine subscription. I happen to share a name with some other woman who also lives in this shitty town. Poor bitch. Anyway, other than her offers for life insurance, MedicAlert jewlery, and those scooters for people with disabilities, from time to time I get her magazine offers. To date I have received offers for "professional" rates for four publications I thoroughly enjoy. The advantage to this is that "professional" rates are usually like one-third the usual subscription rate! Shit yeah!!! My limited funds has only permitted that I avail myself of three of them. Today's treat was the arrival of my first issue of The New Yorker. Color me snobby! (If you're interested, the other two magazines I 'snagged' courtesy of the other TMC are Harper's and The New York Review of Books. I just recently received an offer for the Atlantic Monthly, but have had to hold off . . . for now.) Why am I typing any of this?

Let's see, any other excitement? Um no . . . but it is payday this Wednesday and that means somewhere in this crusty town there will be a big pitcher of IPA with my name on it!

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Gloomy Sunday

I used to believe that a person needed love and/or friends to survive. At one point in my life if you'd asked me about these things I would have argued as to their indispensability to a human existence. I don't really believe that any more. Maybe it's because I am getting older. I don't know. But I am realizing that friendships, love, and memories are very much like snake skins which can be discarded, but unlike snake skins, don't need to be replaced. You do build a tougher skin, but it's a different type of emotional skin which keeps you immune from the aches and pains of life's emotional traumas. Outside, of death, there really is not very much I can't shake off these days.

I have decided to excise yet another person from my life. A very wonderful person. She's one of the neatest people I have ever known, but a slew of strange and bizarre occurrences has left it so that she is much better off without my presence in her life. For a flash I thought maybe I was behaving too hastily, but no, I realize that I don't really need her around. She was a good friend, the best kind of friend, but like all friends I've come into contact with in my disgusting excuse for a life, she's far better off without me. Trust me. So what next? I keep breathing. If I live to be an old woman (which I hope won't be the case), I imagine there will be a night when I can just sit alone, ponder my mistakes with regard to people I've known and with regard to myself, and perhaps not feel so foolish. I'm hoping old age will provide some type of solace, because alcohol only does the trick for so long. And hangovers really do suck.

For once, it would be splendid to really have something to look forward to. Just once. I can't remember the last time I just had one thing that made me want to pretend to be happy. Hell, even getting out of the shit-stain of Texas doesn't do much to please me all that much.

This is has been a horrible week. But haven't they all?

*A note to the world. Do not allow someone's self-loathing to put you in awkward, untenable moral positions. It's unfair. Not to the self-loather, but to yourself.*

Saturday, April 18, 2009

You really don't get out of life alive . . .

I travel a total of four hours (two hours both ways) on Austin's shitty public transportation system to get to a job I work for only 3.75 hours a day. I am paid 11.00 an hour. It's a gross understatement to say that I am underemployed. I spend all of my time putting stickers on books and metal shelves in a cooled High Density Storage facility. I am learning how to use a warehouse cherry picker. That's what I do to make around $150.00 a week. If I think about it too much it makes me want to cry. I don't because I realize any kind of money is better than no kind of money if I want to get the fuck out of this shit hole known as the State of Texas. With the exception of one misogynistic blowhard who fancies himself a "writer" and tries to tell me how to do a job he himself was also just recently hired to do, I get along with my coworkers. I am the only female. There are no attractive people for me to ogle. But then again, I am not attractive, so there is no point in concentrating on the lack of worthwhile eye candy.

I am especially eager to get out of this hole before the government proceeds to do anything more humiliating than the statements which have recently made the national headlines. Oh you know, this state's dumb ass governor's comments about "leaving the union." All for the sake of "Tea Baggers" rights. If I had a pair of balls I could give you idiots something to tea bag alright. But it's a good thing for you all that I could give a shit what happens to this dumb state. I feel absolutely no connection to Texas. None. Nada. Zilch. This place has not ever done a fucking thing to make my life better. Flat, hot, dry, and ugly--that's Texas! Can you believe that people actually get the shape of this fucking place tattooed onto their bodies? I'd die a million deaths before I did anything so idiotic to myself. And I don't want to get started on Austin again. A fine city that freaks out in the presence of black people (See the recent incidents when several business establishments and clubs decided to close early for "safety" during a weekend when an influx of African Americans were in town for an annual track meet. Why? Because apparently ONE person was killed last year. I don't like it that someone was killed, but really, closing down malls and bars? How funny that this shit little town did not decide to close down when South by Southwest had the streets overrun with hipster douches. Fucking racists.)

This was a horrible blog.