Welcome to My Living Novel

In my world, the plot is always thickening.

Thursday, September 29, 2005

Green Day Says It Best

Since September is about to end, I guess it’s time for me to wake up and get back to work. It’s really quite pitiful to see the lazy fur ball I’ve become, especially when there are so many productive things I could be doing. I should be working on my book, finding a better job, or trying to better myself in some shape or fashion. So today I make a resolution (which I will probably break tomorrow) to work harder and to no longer waste the minutes and hours of my day, but to paste them together constructively to form a beautiful papier-mâché piñata, which will eventually rain a storm of prizes on top me.

Gosh, all of this resolution making is making me tried. I guess September is not really over til Saturday. Maybe I’ll just take a little nap for old times sake until then.

Thursday, September 22, 2005

Me & Mory

After weeks of playing phone tag, I finally got to meet up with my stalker from high school who amazingly enough lives in my apartment complex. I went to visit him last night, and though we were never really friends in high school, it was eerie how familiar he felt and how natural everything about our encounter was. To me he is not even a real man. He is more of a walking memory from a life long forgotten. The word “memory” truly sums up every nuisance about last night. I’ve even decided to name him Mory because he is such a strong source of nostalgia for me.

We talked of the people and teachers we remembered and all the things we used to do in high school. I told him that the only thing I could remember about him was that he was the class clown. He always had jokes and the only picture I remember taking of him was at Mock Homecoming where all of the boys on the homecoming court would dress up as women and have a hilarious beauty competition to see who would become “homecoming queen.” In my memories of Mory, he was not someone to be taken seriously, but I was very wrong about him. He’s surprisingly smart and quick with a response. I’m afraid that he could even out debate me in any argument, which I both admire and hate at the same time. My good friend Barefoot in Blue went to high school with Mory and I as well, but she knows Mory a lot better than I do. She said one night that Mory's intelligence is so bright that he feels he has to turn it down and play the clown so as not to blind everyone else with his light. At the time it sounded like such a beautiful thing to say, but I don't know if I really believed it until last night. He really does shine when he doesn't fell obligated to be the buffoon.

Mory said that the only thing he could remember about me was that I was on the dance team, and it was his job as the school mascot to remember all of the cheerleaders and dance team members. It was amazing to me how many of the dance team members he could remember. There were about 20 of us and he could name a good ten, whereas I who was actually on the team and spent a lot of time with the girls could barely remember the name of two of them. It’s so strange to me how unimportant some things become. You spend so much of your time on an activity, but when it’s over, you see that it really wasn’t that important to you to begin with. I even forgot that one of my really good friends was on the team. I mean, I was at this girl’s house everyday. I rode to school with her and her sister every morning, yet I forgot that she was on my dance team! Tell you the truth, I almost forgot her name.

Because of these unforgivable oversights, I was forced to get out my yearbooks and review these forgotten years. Mory was, of course, on every other page being voted the class favorite, the most school spirited, and the friendliest person in the school. You won’t see my name associated with any such titles. I’m hiding in the back of every yearbook picture. You would need a magnified glass to find me. So many parts of me were shy and hiding from the world, but yet I was out and about in the middle of everything just because I happened to make the dance team.

Anyway, after the reminiscing was over we did some catching up, discussing what we are doing with ourselves now, and how we both moved to Nashville from Mississippi. We’ve both changed a lot and have had so many different experiences, but I feel there is a inexplicable understanding between us, like since we know each other’s roots that anything that builds off of that base is already known and almost expected. It’s kind of like talking to a relative you haven’t seen in years. They may not know what you’ve been up to but they still know you and the core of who you are somehow. It’s so strange to get all of that familiar energy off of a semi-stranger, but I guess that's just the type of relationship me & Mory have.

Thursday, September 15, 2005

Pieces of Me

I love…
Jumping in crisp dry leaves
A good meal
You (I mean that sincerely).

I don’t care for…
Talking on the phone
Cell phones
Going to the hairdresser.

I am afraid of…
Boats/sea sickness/drowning
Being a failure
Dying young.

I can…
Do a double salchow
Speak a little French and Swahili.

I can not…
Swim very well
Do the moguls while skiing
Drive in the snow.

I wish that…
I could be a stand-up comedian
I was a little bit taller
I would never have to worry about money again
There was a way to end suffering.

I cherish…
My cd collection
My tarot cards
My teddy bear
My journals and drawings

I miss…
Being in school
Strong hugs
Stirring conversations
The one I love.

Monday, September 12, 2005

Get You Dancing Shoes, It's Time to Salsa

Saturday night I went salsa dancing at the new place on the East side of town called Ibiza. It's a nice club, but I definitely don't like it as much as Caliente. Unfortunately, my favorite salsa spot Caliente is losing business and will probably be closing soon. I'd say only 15-30 people may show up the entire night, which we all know is not very good business. What kills me is how popular Caliente was just one year ago when they would pack at least 400 people in there a night. I miss the good old days of salsa dancing downtown. Now, I have to drive an extra 10 million miles to the East side of town for my salsa fix, and we all know with gas prices as high as they are, an extra 10 million miles is not appreciated.

Despite the cost, I had a ball. There is something so classy and pure about salsa dancing because it's so traditional. The man asks you to dance, he leads you, and when your finished he says, "Thank-you for dancing with me," and leads you off the dance floor. It's a sophisticated atmosphere that can not be replicated in any other booty shaking joint, yet it's not as up-tight or snobby as ballroom dancing. It's a place where women are sexy, men are charming, and everything is as it should be. Now, I admit that woman try to be sexy everywhere, but I have yet to meet a charming man outside of the salsa dancing atmosphere. It's like men have forgotten how to be charming over the years. Instead of unique personal style and sincere smiles, I get terrible pick up lines such as, "Is that the key to your car or the key to your heart." I don't want to hear that. What I want is someone to twirl me around the floor, smile sweetly in my face, and dance cheek to cheek with me. That's what heaven is.

What was so great about everyone I danced with Saturday night was that everyone's style was so different. Everyone prided themselves on their unique moves and their unique flavor and they showed no shame. I saw them break it down to do the snake, the robot, wobble knees, vogue, and much more. These people don't mind being silly and doing what feels good to them. If I went to any hip-hop club, it would be the exact opposite. Every man would take pride in the fact that he can do the exact same 4 moves as everyone else, and would try desperately to hide any distinguishing characteristics about himself. Don't do that. Be yourself, be unique, entertain me with your ridiculous moves. I might actually find it endearing.

To my surprise, many of the regular faces from my beloved Caliente have also switched over to the new club. First, we have my favorite dance partner who I will call Teach because he has taught me practically everything I know about salsa dance. He's a very energetic older man in his 50's who is still able to get down and party like he's 18 years old. I've been dancing with him for 3-4 years now and still don't know a single thing about him. He doesn't speak English. I don't speak Spanish, and I think we will never learn each other's language. Then again what is there really to talk about. I think there's a good possibility that I may like salsa places so much simply because no one can say a stupid line to me or if they do I can just say that they don't speak English very well anyway.

Then there was the Most Beautiful Man in the World. Why this man lives in Nashville is beyond me. He should seriously be living in New York or L.A. doing some type of photo shoot, not walking the same Earth as us normal people in Nashville. I have seen the Most Beautiful Man in the World at Caliente for the past 2 years and he still won't pay me any attention. I mean I know I'm not a latina but can I get a little attention please. Then there was Curly Haired Man who has a different girlfriend every two months.

Finally, I saw Guy who looks just like the guy I used to date or could even be the guy I used to date but I can't remember exactly. I know that sounds horrible, but these two men look so similar I really can't tell the difference anymore. My Guy and I had a glorious month together before he disappeared. I don't know if he died or if he went back to what ever country he came from, but I surely never saw him again. However, right after Guy disappeared another man who looked just like him started going to Caliente, which annoyed me because every time I would see him, my heart would start beating faster, but was disappointed when I realized it wasn't my Guy. Anyway, last night I really couldn't tell if it was my Guy or Guy Who Looks Like My Guy. He had the same smile and he danced cheek to cheek like my guy did, but this one was a bit thinner than my guy and I think a little darker too. He did have a momentary glimmer of recognition in his eyes, and there really was no reason for him to walk all the way across the room to ask me to dance if he didn't know me. I wanted so badly to ask, "Was I kissy face with you a year ago," but somehow that just didn't seem very appropriate. Anyway, even if he was my Guy what would we really have to say to one another now.

Sometimes, I think I truly have problems letting the past die. I can't seem to left go of my old club Caliente for the new one and I can't seem to left go of these old faces for the new. Though there is so much comfort in the past, it will not yield any growth or any new wisdom. I must not dwell on the familiarity of the past, but explore the freshness of the new.

Saturday, September 10, 2005

The Farce of Flirting

It was your typical Friday night excursion, four girls in a car going to the Caribbean club for some good reggae music. In so many ways, last night was so ordinary, but then on another level, it was so funny that it was like watching Def Comedy Jam. It could have been that I drunk just enough liquor to put me in that place where everything was more amusing and where I was no longer self-conscious about the mininess of my mini-skirt. However, I believe the main reason why last night was great was because the two men I met were so hilarious.

Usually when writing about new acquaintances in my blog, I give them some type of pseudonym to protect their identity, but these guys real names were so ridiculous that they must be shared. Their names are Smart and Sunshine. Though you may think I’m making this up, I am simply not creative enough to come up with such absurd names. First of all, who would name their child Smart? I mean we all hope for intelligent children, but to go ahead and name your child after such a common adjective is puzzling to me. I don’t even understand people who name their children adjectives like Precious or Darling, and for me to try to understand the name Smart is too much.

The person behind the name was a pretty nice guy though. He was from Nigeria, which annoyed me a little because it seems like every other man I meet is Nigerian. It’s like they all have some type of ultrasensitive radar to find me. Although he was nice enough, he delivered me the chessiest line I’ve ever heard. You see I always attach my car key on the side of my skirt or pants so I won’t have to carry a bag with me all night. Smart notices the key hanging off of my skirt and says, “Is that the key to your car or the key to your heart.” To this commit I turned around and backed that thang up so I could laugh hysterically at such a stupid line. Of course he thought I was moved by this line and asks for my number, but I’ve come up with a new dating rule for myself. I refuse to give out my number in any club-like environment. Any club bun I meet must first submit a writing sample to my email address before I would even consider speaking to them again. So far it’s working like a charm and I’ll soon get to see how smart Smart is in writing.

And then there was Sunshine. Why you would name a boy Sunshine is beyond me. It’s such a feminine name that I couldn’t even manage to turn around to laugh, and I wound up laughing directly in his face. I did not feel bad about this at all because Sunshine definitely was not as polite as Smart. He had wandering hands and some jealous girlfriend-like character that would come over and push me out of the way for dancing with a man. I thought this was so amusing because it’s such a stereotypical occurrence you see on every black movie that for me to actually experience it in my life was comical. I could almost imagine the girl in the corner talking to her friends, “I don’t who that bitch think she is, dancing with my Sunshine like that. I’m going have to roll up in there and sho’ that bitch her place.” Or at least that’s how I would imagine she would sound. I’m not at all hip to the hip talk so I don’t pretend to know.

Even as a re-read this entry, I can’t help but laughing at how funny the farce of flirting is. I had a great time but definitely not a great enough time to ever talk to any of my new acquaintances again. I’m still determined to be lonely for a while longer until I can get my mind straight so that I can create a good relationship for myself, and it seems that everything in pop culture in helping me to do just that. From the movies to music videos, everything around me seems to add another good idea to my personal philosophy. For example, in the movie “What the Bleep Do We Know,” they suggest that we create our own reality and that our minds control everything around us. I could understand how my mind could affect myself and my attitude toward life, but I didn’t understand how my mind could affect someone else or the relationships I was in. Well, Friday afternoon I was watching nine inch nail’s new video “Only” and this idea that I create my reality and the people around me started to make so much more sense to me. Trent Reznor sings “I just made you up to hurt myself, and it worked.” These lyrics were so profound to me. Even after the video was over, I just sat there for a good half-hour pondering about all the situations and relationships that I created within my mind just to hurt myself.

Of course, I’m not intentionally trying to hurt myself. It’s like a little kid who wants so badly to jump off a swing in mid air because it would be fun to fly. The child doesn’t want to be hurt. He doesn’t want to break an ankle, but he’s willing to risk it for the thrill of soaring. This is exactly what I do in relationships. I jump off the swing with someone completely wrong for me, and then I act surprised when I have to wear an emotional cast over my broken anatomy for the next six months.

In retrospect, I can see all of the mistakes of my past and wonder how could I be so short-sighted, yet I don't think I would change a single thing even if I was given the chance. I've learned so much the hard way, and I'm very thankful for that. Now, I think it's time to learn things in a more easy, thoughtful way.

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

I Know It's Silly, But You'll Just Have to Forgive Me

I was eating lunch yesterday and watching some TV to amuse myself. As usual nothing was on, so I went to my handy dandy On Demand feature on the digital cable and started searching for new music videos. To my surprise the new My Chemical Romance video "The Ghost of You"was on there, and I jumped so high in air with happiness you would have thought I won Powerball. It took me several seconds to calm down and hit the watch button, but my excitement was well justified because it was a fantastic video. My new inexplicable celebrity crush, Gerard Way, looked fabulous, and in general all of the band members were just adorable. They were back in World War II times, and they were singing at their last concert before they had to go off to war “never coming home.” Once again it was very dramatic like the Helena video and I was moved for the second time. The video also alluded to a scene in Legends of the Fall, one of my favorite movies, about how these two brothers get separated and one brother has to watch other die. It was too much. It was too beautiful. I had to watch it three times in a row.

And my beloved Gerard Way looked so handsome and clean cut. He looked like the young Elvis Presley you see to the left. I mean the resemblance was truly uncanny. I swear this boy is a chameleon because when I first saw him in their, “I’m Not Okay” video, I thought he looked like Billy Corgan, of the Smashing Pumpkins, with hair. Now, he transforms into this new sexy Elvis. Do your thing Gerard Way, do your thing! Although my fascination with Mr. Gerard Way is a little silly, I willing to allow a few adolescent behaviors through my very serious adult facade just to stay young at heart a little longer.

Oh, Brother

This holiday weekend my mom and I drove to North Carolina to visit my older brother. He moved there just one year ago to start a new career as a music teacher at a middle school that is literally in the middle of nowhere (a.k.a. the middle of a cotton field). What surprised me about this whole adventure was the amount of respect my brother held in this small community. He was clearly good at his job and the parents greatly appreciated the work he was doing with their children. In my mind, my brother is still the evil demon that tortured me for my entire adolescent life, so it’s next to impossible for me to imagine my brother in any respectable position such as a teacher of young minds. I guess some things you just have to see to believe and this trip made a believer out of me. People can change. People can mature. People can find a niche in life where their annoying idiocies are an asset instead of barrier.

Since my brother is also the assistant director of the marching band at the high school, we got to see him in action at the Friday night football game. He stood on his ladder, conducting 90-100 fresh-faced teenagers getting ready to play the Star-Spangled Banner. He kept on mouthing to the kids, “All eyes on me. Eyes on me.” Once he got control of everyone, he started the song, and it was so fascinating to see he’s arms move up and down with every crescendo or how he could force one particular section to play louder. I was very impressed and I am not easily impressed. I was glad to see him up on this self-made podium. In retrospect, I could see that his entire life was building up to this moment. His heinous desire to oppress and control me as a child developed into a very constructive and respectable desire to control and teach these school-aged children. I was proud of the life he’d chosen. It’s not the big life we all dream of as children, but it’s a life to be respected.

Although I know the respectable life is more rewarding in the long run, part of me still wants the big life, still wants that allusive part-time job that pays 100K a year. Some how I don’t think this dream will be coming true any time soon, so in the meantime I must ponder on how I will find a respectable life. In the past year, I’ve played with so many ideas of how to start my respectable life, but none of them seem to work out. At first I wanted to continue my education and go to grad school in Anthropology and/or law school, but I wasn’t sure if it was something I really wanted or if it was the easy way out. Next, I thought maybe I could get some work experience. I applied and interviewed for a kaleidoscope of unrewarding jobs and was always so hurt when didn’t get them. As I look back on my luck, I see that I would not been any better off if I received any of these jobs. Of course, these jobs would have made my checking account look that much more impressive, but I don’t think they would make me any happier.

So many of my peers have already started their respectable life, and it really makes me wonder what have I been doing wrong. Practically all of them, like my brother, have become teachers or some kind of education administrator. I feel it would be so easy to join them, and jump on the school daze bandwagon, but it’s simply not where I belong. I know what I’m waiting on, but it’s an idea so fragile that it’s impossible to explain right now. I’m sure that when this idea solidifies it will lead me to a life that is so much more rewarding because it is something that I’ve created from the ground up.