Monthly Archives: July 2007

These things that I do

I’m at BlogHer ’07 in Chicago.  Marketing away.  And sometimes marketing can be an introvert’s nightmare.  But it doesn’t help that I’ve already mistaken someone from a PR agency as being a representative of Entenmann’s baked goods b/c frankly it sounded close to Entenmenn’s and the person said they had a personal food blog and, well, I was a bit flustered in a large group of people.

Then I giggled at a woman who seemed to be making a distraught face while texting with her shoulders shrugged way up to her ears.  I thought she was just stressed and squinting to see her text screen – until she walked away and I could see as she walked away this was her permanent stature.  I know, I’m going to political correctness hell.  But it gets worse.

I mistook a black woman who made a great comment in a session for another black woman that came up to the booth later.  Yes, because they were both black.  And I am still trying to sort this one out in my head, desparately trying to think what sessions I am confusing where they both made great comments, but I just can’t. 

And I do these things.  Like asking the people who work upstairs in Pfeiffer if that was the same people who make my listerine.  No, that would be pfizer and why exactly would they work in a publishing office? 

But it’s okay.  I forgive myself because it’s not intentional.  And I’m the only one who matters here.

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What I did not do today

Eat something that has been staring back at me every time I open the fridge.  For 2 weeks now.  When it should have been thrown out 1.5 weeks ago. 

And it just confirms that however good they were day of, my birthday is definitely over with.

But I didn’t do that.  Not me, not today.

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Realizing how disappointing I can be only makes me stronger…

Knowing that I used to be one of those people with uncertain beliefs and an unwillingness to argue a point, I find it hard not to be frustrated with wishy washy people now that I’ve built up my convictions.  I know, so judgemental – against who I once was, nonetheless. 

For seven years I’ve had to hold my beliefs up against boy’s standard – if you can’t argue it, it’s not valid.  And I don’t like debate, it stresses me out.  So I justified my beliefs on what felt right.  I couldn’t eat meat because it gave me nightmares which make me feel anxious and antsy so not eating meat made me feel better.  I once could not say there was no god b/c I was worried about what people might think and that made me feel like I had my undies in a bunch so I just never committed to an opinion on that.  But now, I just don’t care.  Even attempting to be a vegan makes me feel at peace despite my colleague meat-pushers.  Not believing in god reassures me.  My obligation is to what is in front of me, not to whatever it is people look up toward. 

Recenlty I’ve branched out into conversations with more people about these issues (because like I mentioned here, I have to tell EVERYONE about what I care about.)  But I get irked with the people who haven’t yet decided if they believe in something or the people who didn’t know what they are putting into their mouth actually rots in their intestines over a period of years producing gases that escape through various orifices and I’m not talking about the flatulent variety.  And people who don’t want to know, don’t care to know, don’t have the energy to know that there are parts of the world that need fixing and little people can only do so much but if we all did only so much oh the difference it would make. 

And with this attitude comes the realization that I’ve disappointed people.  And in turn that disappoints me.  For me, these beliefs have come as naturally as waking up and brushing my teeth.  Nothing special, nothing mind-blowing, just a sense of obligation to help the world, just a feeling that the person in the clouds wasn’t watching over me anymore, a hunch that the cow on my plate may have been the reason I had been constipated on and off for 15 yrs.  And for the people I’ve disappointed, these new beliefs are a curious sign that maybe I won’t be the person they hoped I’d be.  but I’m not sorry, not adapting to their vision means I’m stronger than the girl they had in mind.

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how boy works

The first time I hung out with boy at his apartment I payed close attention to the way things were set up, what books were on the shelves, the fact that he owned adult furniture and I only boarded in a dorm room.  He must have suspected me wide-eyed and curious because right when I glanced up at his AC vent, wondering what that thing was danlging from it and hoping that it wasn’t a cockroach b/c then he’d see me scream like the girl that I am and I’d have to run to a room I had not yet been invited into, he reached up and pulled down a bendy magnet stick figure. 

“This is for you.”

I took it from him and uncontorted the stick figure only to discover he pasted a picture of his face on it and also a picture of the back of his head on the opposite side of the black oval head/magnet.  I smiled. 

When we came out to California, I insisted we get new book cases.  In his previous apartment the bedroom was lined with paperbacks while the book cases were his display space for titles arranged by author in chronological order with face-outs of special editions.  I had no room for my books.  So I designated certain shelves of our new book cases for my books, and my books only in no particular order and no face outs and no specific spacing because they are my books and if I want one I know where to find it even if you don’t. 

Browsing through my titles one day, I came across a purple spine.  I didn’t own a book with a purple spine.  I pulled it out and found a card sticking out from the pages.  Boy had been waiting a full month for me to find this book he had hidden somewhere in that horrible mess of titles that he didn’t like to look at.   I smiled.

 A month or two later, another book. 

so on and so on.  a book hidden on his shelf, a new ornament on the x-mas tree with a hidden gift inside, a pastry inside the fridge when I came home from work, candy in his bag that he knows I dig through b/c I am curious, a chocolate bunny hidden in the couch one summer that I neglected to find Easter morning after I insisted he hide something so I can hunt it down b/c that’s what Easter’s about – forget the whole Jesus thing.

And birthdays are the same fashion.  Started with the cupcake book, then the present on the car seat, then the card that said I can put my new jump rope into my overnight bag for the weekend trip he surprised me with.  Come Monday, I joked about still looking for gifts because I didn’t want it to end.  And now that it’s his birthday weekend and I’ve started with class and during the next three weeks I’ll be in a different state each week, I thought I was starting the count down to see how long I can last before I start to cry about not allowing myself a chance to breathe.  Especially after getting the grumps at handing over $130 for a graphing calculator and being behind 5 sections in calc after only 2 classes and stressing over the giant ice cream cookie sandwich I am trying to make him that’s not setting up right but I insist it be perfect so I can see his expression when he sees a GIANT ice cream cookie sandwich…

and so we got in the car, and I was slouchy and furrow-browed.  He said “here, for you.”  I looked down and saw the edge of a DVD thinking he was giving me his new 2-disc set of Pan’s Labyrinth he just bought knowing I love the movie for the escape from reality it provides.  And then on closer inspection, it was Labyrinth, the David Bowie, Jennifer Connelly, Jim Hensen movie that I quote from and get giddy over Bowie in purple spandex in a way that is just wrong.  It’s his birthday weekend and he got me a present.  And the graphing calculator solved my quadratic formula issues in a snap.  Smiles all around.

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Defending my roots

A few weeks ago on vacation, we flew into Birmingham.  Right when we started driving down through Talledega County I wanted to go back to east bay.  I wanted to run back to east bay.  Something about the south does that to me, everytime I return I get the feeling I had when I was 17, I have to leave and not look back otherwise I will turn to salt and disappear into the humidity.  Usually I try and prep myself with long drives in the car with Dixie Chicks singing “Been a long time gone…”  But I guess I didn’t do adequate prepping. 

Then we stopped at a gas station where Miss Knows-everyone-in-these-parts pegged us for out of towners that don’t say m’am and sir.  She wasn’t friendly.  And a southerner not being friendly is a red flag.  It means leave.  Leave now. 

And further into the woods where I’m pretty sure Deliverance was filmed, I hear the gal in the lawn chair next to me say “oh no, I ain’t no Auburn girl, I’m Tigers all the way!”  So, of course, I have to say, “Where in Louisiana are you from?  Baton Rouge?”  Metarie.  So I tell her I’m from Lafayette.  And she swings her body to face me, wrinkling her face, “well hell, you ain’t been there for a long time.  you don’t talk like it at all.”  I end up having this conversation at least 1 person every time I return to the south.

So I go through the schpiel: 18 yrs Louisiana, then NY, then P’cola, now Cali.

“You like California?”

“Yes, I like it very much.”

“I don’t know, Californians don’t like southerners.  They think we’re stupid…”

I tell her about how I feel more accepted in California than anywhere I’ve been b/c people just don’t care.  Also, I don’t get a pork chop on my plate when I tell people I don’t eat meat. 

She continued to wrinkle her leathery face and grill me about California.  Saying maybe that’s what it is, people aren’t friendly and don’t care about others.  How in Louisiana you go to the grocery store and the lady checking you out will ask you what you’re cooking and the conversation will lead you to inviting her over to dinner.  How just because southerners don’t leave the south, people think they’re dumb.  I told her my best friend may be on her second husband and second baby and has never really left the south, but she’s still going after her master’s degree.  I told her how much I like SF, but Los Angeles is not for me.  And then she reveals, she’s only been to Los Angeles.  Well I wouldn’t like California either if I had just gone to LA, I think I know better.

Give me a few beers and you’ll hear that I’m from the south. 

Then she explained how to cook an etouffee without a roux. 

I may not eat crawfish, but I know never to mention the idea of cooking an etouffee without a roux to anyone in Louisiana.  They’d kick me out of the state.

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And now that you’re 26…

Nothing says you’re getting older like having to shell out $300 for a root canal.

Son of a bitch.

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Signs I’m not ready to commit

Boy was eating chips and I asked him to save me some.  So he left me the crumbs – crumbs I couldn’t get into the bean dip.  So I stuck my finger in the bean dip and then rolled my finger in the crumbs and repeated until all the crumbs were gone.  I looked up and boy was looking at me like I had just dirty sanchezed the tostido bag.  It was my bean dip at my apartment!  I don’t care if he’ll never eat out of it again.

And then I said I was going to blog about it.

And the he mocked my blogging!

But I’m not allowed to say anything b/c my birthday was beautiful. 

It was indeed, but now it’s over.

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