Squish

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Things that are true.

My laptop lid will not always stay open.
My water does not have enough ice in it by far.
I have a lingering headache that is not making this post easy to write in a sensible form.

I’m discovering Christmas carols I have never heard before in my life.

I have painted my nails in what I thought was a golden hue, but actually has a greenish-gold tone that makes my pale fingertips look a bit gangrenous or in other lights, casts me as though I’ve got a case of colic.
I have watched a horrific Christmas film about a clown and do not know if I will ever fully enjoy the holiday again.
I need to appreciate the fact that I was given flowers and loads of chocolate and hugs and kind things from my coworkers and not just feel as though they are another task on my list of endlessly required reciprocation I’ve yet to reciprocate fully.

I am really quite tired and will probably go to bed at least by midnight in the hopes that I can just run through the day tomorrow and get over to my parents because I want to just be on vacation or not so mentally connected to anything or one right now.  Providing the laundry is done.

I am actually proud of myself for carrying on this long, long, long writing spree for 6 years.  6 fucking years.  Lord.  I don’t know how this transition to doing something different will work, but I know I have to, have to in ten different ways.  Still, this has been a commitment of my life.  This has taken some iron will.

The guy and I are still talking 99% of which is regarding this D&D game.  I have zero sense if he likes me or dislikes me, or…if I am honest, and speaking in terms of truth, I know exactly how much he likes me…which is the sane amount for someone you’ve had an extended facebook conversation with.   Nothing has been decided yet.  Nothing has been created yet.   I have not even determined if I want things to be decided and created and happening.  He could be an axe murderer! He could be a saint! He could be a dour bore.  He could be a sexist prick (I think he is emphatically not that).  He could be completely fine and just not that into me.  He is also not here and and mostly not the most viable option.  Yet, he’s willing to talk to me off and on for the better part of two days so even if I’m just filling a slot at his D&D table, it is bigger than nothing. And I do have to acknowledge that working at the shop does sort of challenge my ability to provide entertaining repartee via my phone whilst I am on the floor.

I am so looking forward to being able to get back in some healthy patterns and habits in the new year.  I can feel my body screaming for it in countless ways.

Scream!

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…someday we’ll get there.

“I’m not going anywhere with you.”  “And how dare you have the indecency to be look shocked! The fact that I stand here at all this morning is as much an astonishment to me as it appears to be to you. I’ve been nearly done-in for this game tonight.”
“It was no game, Amelia.  It was never a game.  No one ever…” Indeed, the Professor’s grave face bore an excessively earnest expression as though she had misunderstood him entirely.  It was striking, so much so that she would have liked to be able to calm herself and speak sense.   However, her fury, so rarely ignited, was held her well beyond that.
“You know good and well that it’s game enough to those boys, a hunt, a bit of liveliness to chase down some book just on the edge of inaccessible for coin to pay for their meals until the next one.  They never expected to pay their lives for your patronage, I never expected…

A swirl of light started at the center of the room, as bright and white as sunlight scalding a snow-filled street.  There were no gentle violins this time to distract her from the crackling noise.  It sounded of a fire that had just been fed fresh kindling, snapping away as it devoured.  It just as it was the night of the dinner when all this began.

She stepped back, feeling her face contort in horror.  Willoughby had not died, but the memory of the theatre was as present as if he had.

“No!” He pulled at her arm, moving her towards him.

“If you pull away, I will let you go and I cannot bear what will follow for the both of us.”

“You speak nonsense, you’ve only ever spoken nonsense.

“We traffic in worlds now.  No longer just ours, no longer just our mysteries, and we intended to help them with what we knew so that they could help us in return.  It has gone…wrong.  We must do what we can to correct it.  He requires that we correct it.” He hissed as if his words could possibly implant and effect meaning in Amelia’s exhausted brain.

“If I am to believe

“There is not time, there are but minutes, Miss Crevecoeur, until the portal bursts forth.  Once we arrive, I can explain myself, though by God, I do not wish the truth upon you now any more than I once wished that mark.”

“The mark.  It was branded on us the last time we stood here, agog, at your portal.”

“They are…passports of flesh…made by being bound to what lies on the other side.  The acid etches a symbol so they know you are a traveller of the portals. It’s a nasty sort of stuff, but without it, we will not be trusted.”

“You can’t take her back there.”  Willoughby’s voice was clarion, as he emerged, as ever, from the shadows.  Nearly as essentially, the tea service steamed beneath his fervently jutted chin.
“If you have any feelings for the woman, Ammon, any at all, you will not take her across the Channel.”

Amelia repeated it to herself, bemusedly, Willoughby’s tone twisting the otherwise straightforward meaning.  The Channel?  

Ammon held out his hand.  She noticed his hand scarred with the falcon.
“Do you trust me?”
“No!  Not in the slightest!”
“Do you want to know where all your finds have been going?  What all of this has been about?”
“Of course, I want to know, but I’d be perfectly satisfied by a simple explanation.”
“Would you?”
“Of course not.”
“No.  Of course not.”

“I warn you, Ammon.  Come and sit here with Amelia and I, and we will drink this tea.  We will let the portal close.  You need never go there again.”

“I have seen such things…Laurence, my soul would never rest if I were to do that.”

“You would feed her to that monster.”  His

The rictus wretched itself open as if in reply.  The Professor nodded, as if he had mourned her a thousand times before and was mourning her again.  “I won’t let it come to that.”

“What monster?”

 

 

 

 

Historical Footnote

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It is impossible for me to finish this post without first writing one hundred words.  It is impossible for me to call it done without first beginning it.  So I am here, ill and in bed, with a sore jaw and headache and a body that aches for succor of all stripes, writing to you.

I should get in the bath and try and sleep, but I don’t expect it to happen so easily as that.

Chinese Food Picnic…my coworkers sent me home early today, or my boss, I suppose at the shop.  I have caught the great whatever, a sickness that has worn me down, and I was so relieved to be able to drive home in the light of day and not the dark of night, but before all that my co-worker bought me egg drop soup and we ate at a table in the middle of the store, just for fun.  She also made me a jar of baileys and vodka and chocolate something and I forgot it in a mad rush to get home and cry on the couch.

The I Don’t Want A Christmas Tree I Can Trip On Christmas…my mother doesn’t want me to put up the big Christmas tree.  And if I love her, I will hear her and not do it.  But I do want to put up the big Christmas tree.  Not necessarily there, not necessarily the family one, but mine, dotted with ornaments that have the meaning of the life I would be celebrating.  My own stars and little birds and apples and stained glass Seven Swans a’Swimming and my own stories.  I wish I had an easy way to do that.

Crying in the dark…today, I sat on the couch and cried in the dark. The little kitten came up and swirled around on my lap, disturbed and restless about it.  I didn’t mind.

The Handmaid’s Tale…I am intrigued by the adaptation that Hulu’s putting out.  That book is, of course, a hugely relevant consideration of a dystopian direction that nobody can say we’re NOT pushing as a country right now.  I remember reading it in a Women’s Lit class (oh, you know damn well I took Women’s Lit classes, honestly) and I found it so striking, so blood-curdling, so horrific.  But also, naturally, just scifi.  Just out there in terms of anything that I believed the government would allow to happen.  Now, I don’t believe it will happen, but I don’t believe some aspects of it won’t subtly encroach further and deeper than any sane and rational person would allow if they knew they were coming down the pike.  I hope it is a conversation starter.  I hope it is so revolting and horrifying that people pay some sort of attention.

Pizza Terminator…oh, why couldn’t Sarah Connor and Kyle Reese had a few years together raising their crazy Skynet-destroying son together before he got hit, inexplicably and tragically by a car or a falling computer or something.  It would be so much more ironic.  But, alas, that’s probably not what they were going for.  It just makes sense to me.

That is postmodernism for you, though.

Fever…do I have one?  Can we tell if we touch our forehead with a feverish hand?  Probably not.   I did take the one baby aspirin so I do feel covered.  I just have to sleep.  I will, at some point, probably at gunpoint, make that happen.

Life…this is how it’s looking these days.

How to Improve Blog Traffic

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The woman let the sword scrape the asphalt as she walked towards the pay phone.  She could not drop it nor wield it, despite its weight, as she did not have the strength to untie the rope that bound it to her wrist.  It sparked and clattered at her side.  It tilted and slit into her bare, frostbitten ankles.  Nipped at the edges of her bare, bluish feet, leaving small paper cut-like wounds that should have bled, but merely darkened as though she had been marked by a quill, instead.

It was clear she was discomfited.  Her eyes bulged out as though she had been staring at a single point for days on end.  Here, a few ragged white bed-sheets knotted and twisted around her form to protect her from the elements, to provide a modesty that felt laughable to concern herself with.

But still she drug that anchor forward.  She couldn’t lose it, not if she wanted to, and she didn’t want to.  It was, on some level, as necessary as her own spine. She didn’t even mind the suffering that came right before a resurrection.  It never lasted as long as it should.

It was too early in the morning for many cars to pass her as she stumbled forward on the small 2-lane road that smelled as though it were Northern.  Her nose had not always been better for dodging blows than differentiating the delicate blooms, tasting the terroir between wines, but for now, all she knew was this idea of North of before.  Of colder than Then.  Of the phone call she had to make now that she was utterly and completely exhausted of all other resources.

It wasn’t much further if she remembered correctly.  It was less that she hoped that she remembered correctly, and that there was nothing else to hope.

If she were seen, this spectral figure on the road, she would appear as a ghost.  Some banshee, some eidolon, some half-known creature. She would not register as a person in need of aid.  No one would stop to inquire, no one would dare.  Another hope that by necessity was fact.

It was some time, step after step, pain after pain, when the wooded roadway opened up slightly and revealed a gas station.  She ignored the security cameras, she ignored the smell of North, the feel of not-Then as the here and now became corroded with gasoline and bitter coffee beans.  She clattered up the graffiti’d phone booth.

Rather than fumble through pockets for a quarter, she plucked a greying red hair from her wounded temple, one of the few long enough to pull free.  She held it in her hand until it trembled, spun around itself, and slowly shifted into a bright, shiny piece of U.S. currency.

The phone number was several digits longer than any international call, and the silence much longer than she, nor any soul with reason, would endure.

She could feel this body beginning to mutiny, beginning to chase the foreign captain at its helm onto the plank.

“Thank you for calling your local Vitamin Spree!” An aggressively cheerful female voice chirped in greeting.  She frowned, a reflex the body could not deny her.

In her own voice, rusty from disuse, she whispered “It’s done” before fainting on the cement pad of the Loaf and Jug.  She did not hear the subtle ding of assent as it replied through the receiver.  It was some time before she heard anything again.

I’d Pay Good Money

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After feeling flummoxed as to what to write, I went back and read three year-old this post.  So, therefore, tonight’s town crier is yelling something about me really missing therapy and my therapist in particular.

Because it’s the gods’ honest truth.  I do.  I miss the little blue box that says, in the past two weeks, have you done so much pills and booze that you killed a man?  Yes? No? Partially? Just scared him a bit?  I miss that underlit room, that couch, that wall of books I’d stare at while listening to myself verbalize things I didn’t know I could say out loud.

Not being able to go there and talk about all of this is a little bit…no, it’s a lotta bit fucked up.  I want to move forward and that was taking some of the friction away that was holding me back.  It was helping me stay on a track I said, outloud, I wanted to be on.  A track that seems to be blown away in a steady wind as I trace it through the snow.  I feel myself standing in the middle of a snowy clearing, looking in all directions for clues, even my footprints that got me in there are gone and I don’t know what to do.

I have zero perspective.   Clean your room.  Get a boyfriend.  Fix your driving.  Get a better job.  Save money.  Write a book.  Read a book. Lay very still and align yourself to the universal heartbeat.  Embrace relentless curiosity.  Give in.  Fight.  Relinquish control.  Pursue your intent.  Or as I titled a major high school English project:  Serenity Vs. Action, a dialogue of aphorisms.

Breathing.  Everyone just says

It’s like when I handed my mother those cards about what areas in my life I wanted help with.  Just pick one.  What’s the worst? Where do we start to get me back to where I should be?  Just point me somewhere because I can’t move.  And she just laughed and shrugged the exercise off, an instant I remember as shattering because I was so in earnest, so desperate, really.  But then I felt, okay, I at least learned something here.  I learned you can’t do that.  You can’t just be vulnerable like that.  You just have to know these things.  You just have to figure this shit out on your own.

But I couldn’t.  Years and years go by and despite a constant effort towards some cohesive, self-directed, non-disruptive self-improvement, I still don’t know what to do first.

I was looking at our community board today and saw an ad for a local therapist.  I researched her and she’s not a match for me.  I can’t imagine playing I just…the job would have given me that access to my therapist again.  It’s okay that I didn’t get it.  It’s okay, but without that insurance, I can’t see her even for an insane rate.  So.  I have to dig around and maybe see what I can do.  I have to talk to someone so I can figure out how to keep talking to people.

 

Batting A Thousand

shetland-pony-1250533-639x424I did not post yesterday.  Apologies for that.  I’m sure you were all on extraordinarily sharp tenterhooks about what’s going on with me. It’s not as though there’s a thing in the wide universe to catch your attention beyond my daily drivel.  But I did feel regretful I spent yesterday dancing and prancing about and forgot to post here.

So, today, I have decided not to post twice, but just to make this single post longer and to take some care with it so that it is not exhaustively useless.  It is hard to imagine how I am going to make that happen, but I choose to believe that there is, in some way, something substantive for me to talk about.

Of late, I have had a sense that the stories, the sensations I want to illuminate and share are duplications of ones I have shared before.  I do not feel progress.  I do not feel as though I am reaching into the dangerous or broken or unchallenged countries within myself and pushing towards a reckoning.  I feel like I have been swimming in the kiddie pool for six years.  For a whole life. At the same time, I have to aware that what I am choosing to put out there is being put out into a public forum.  It’s the internet, yo.  I can’t go from being a person who can’t quietly talk about her relationships with people she’s known more than half her life in a small room to someone who suddenly has no fear about what the fallout could be when you dump your raw, abraded carcass on the slab and say, pick this apart. Batter this heart.

Especially in this new day and age.  People are kind, but people are also terrible.  To splay oneself so fully and utterly only becomes worthwhile in my mind once we get to the other side of something.  I want to report: I’m in love! I have a new job! I’m getting married! I’m moving! I published a thing! I drove to the other side of town! I changed in some incontrovertible way!

I don’t know, necessarily, how to get there, though. I don’t necessarily know that my fear is about telling you TMI or negative things.  It’s nearly Thanksgiving and this year has been so hard on me.  It’s been hard on the world, of course.  It’s been, individually and collectively, a clusterfuck.   I know there’s empathy accessible to me, I also know that I feel a little bit possessive of my own pain.  My own disappointments, my own jarring realizations about my own behavior. I don’t think it’s shown in the writing, save that the writing has weakened for the lack of truth-telling. It’s pasty and mealy and won’t hold up under its own weight.  Like a shit meringue. It reflects someone who has been trying very hard not to feel the depth of everything she has to feel.  To not go through the doors she knows she has to go through.

My feelings of reduced competency at work, the money being halved, feeling small and slighted and ultimately forgotten while I struggle, all the while the feelings of having brought my sister into this negative situation and watching her have to struggle with the situation.  My worries about my mother and her health, my thoughts about her never knowing me as a person who experiences romantic love, the demands others make on me for empathy and positivity when I don’t trust that I can receive it from them.  The sense that I will never be able to unclench enough to change course.  That I don’t have the werewithal to take these steps, to turn off the internet, to start talking to men who are actually available, to get myself and my house in a state where I don’t shuffle around access so that nobody ever sees the full mess at one time, to figure out how to stop letting the driving situation get worse.

It’s a lot to try and sit in bed and unlock.  The ability to do anything is the issue at hand.  My own inertia is what I am trying to call out, saying is fucking my life up, is warping my spirit into a putty, a shit meringue if you will.  But, as frustrated as I sometimes am with the posts I put out when I am making no effort to work on myself, a lesson that I keep relearning is that even amidst these times when it feels like the whole of my life is on pause, that’s not true.

Programs are running in the background, both good and bad.  Paths are opening up.  Windows are closing.  Time is looping.  We’re a wave and a particle.  There’s every opportunity for things to improve and/or worsen.  And while we wait for stars to align, it’s life.  Running through our fingertips.

It is a marathon, not a sprint, another belabored metaphor as so many are wont to say these days when you are considering how much of the rotten elephant you want to force down your gullet in one go.

There are big, bold flashes of light to follow even if they are only caused by the tiniest of ions rubbing together.  The heavens provide and the heavens forfend.

A list of short, domestic facts:

The pots and pans are clean as evidenced by my wrinkly fingertips.
We went in and did as the boss asked and put the checks in the bank.
We also went and got a breakfast of cornbread rancheros that was delicious and nearly filling until I recalled that time I got so deadly sick on a homemade version.
I have work tomorrow, and then, with a packed bag and my xbox and computer, maybe… on comes the Thanksgiving experience + potentially, another social gathering without all of  the family.
I have been reading a Terry Pratchett book and think I am finally getting why his works are so beloved.
I am here….Now.

Ignis Fatuousness

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Alright, back and away from London-town, to write to you about the fact that it does not seem to matter how I move my head and/or neck, because there’s an odd, dull pain that has come out of nowhere except for the very reasonable explanations I can find for half of it and that I am in a right fit of very calm, very relaxed panic about it.

It is just not bad enough to need to linger, and yet it has.  I woke up with its presence running through me and the worry has kept my attention focused on myself from toe to tip so that every breath and twinge and horror appears to me as a flag of something too horrendous to speak of.  And the hypochondria which has no verb form just lingers with it.  I have spent the day leaping at internal shadows. There have been verifiable moments I have also marked down in my mind that I felt okay, that I was laughing, that I had thought, okay, this is just a pain in the neck from sitting in bed and staring down at my computer and phone 12 hours a day, conservatively.    And getting old as fuck.

After this, I will be getting myself into the hot bath and soaking my neck.  I’ve been using the Hitachi Magic Wand for its intended purpose.  I have been considering what, as a downtrodden, broke-ass person is a problem that is at the level where I have to get it checked out and what…you know, given my histrionic history with health complaints can be borne and rode out until November 1st when I can enroll again and get myself on some sort of health track.  I am actually encouraged by the thought of a health track.

It is, in some measure, if not entirely, based on the stress I feel.  Work is so dysfunctional right now, and frustrating on so many levels, that I am starting to dread it.  I think it’s just working through my body.  It knows this isn’t right for me and even if I refuse to fully acknowledge how much I need to run for the hills, my body is finding ways of pulling my chain back…hard.

The remainder of my words are thrown at a job application.