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Jul. 31, 2020

dropping the ball 

Maybe we should retire the tradition of dropping the ball first thing of the year, it just seems so metaphorically damning. 

I’d thought and maybe even Tweeted that before, but specifically remember saying it aloud to my boyfriend on the morning of January 1st, 2020. 

My boyfriend is a man of unconditional kindness and of absolute conditional expression of any emotion. I know that’s most guys, but his case of the latter is on the extreme end. The first time we said “i love you” was in the middle of a drunken spat in the back of an Uber on the way home from a Modest Mouse concert.

I was...okay I’ll say it, incredibly belligerent about him ordering the car during the last minute of the last song & bolting out right as the music ended (despite this being the norm as far as us leaving concerts go) instead of doing what I (drunkenly, thus stubbornly) wanted, which was going to the bar next door to get another drink and wait out the surge prices. 

Mind you, this was a random weeknight, exactly one day after I had just gotten back to the city after my sister’s wedding in Florida (which was barely a 3 day trip where I was somewhere on the spectrum of tipsy to white girl wasted for about 37/52 hours of it. The 15 hours of sobriety account for the hours I was sleeping, but technically my sobriety level was debatable). 

Also, mind you, I had already had an unknown number of double gin & tonics during the show & it was already 11ish. Unlike your average office job, I had to be at work by 8am. Alright, we now we all have the relevant info. 

Anyway, we left the venue & I immediately started walking toward the bar & he lost me in the crowd and called me,  somehow not saying just “what the fuck?” when I answered the phone. I was sober enough to pretty quickly decide to go back and get into the non-surge price Uber, but not without the very specific type of drunk bitch in their 20s pouting.

The bickering about what just played out in the last 5 minutes stopped when I, wasted yet still aware enough that I had knew I had no winning arguement here, rechanneled the booziness from belligerent into affection. I finally said it.

His response was immediate, with the first 4 coming words out at a speed reserved for when you don’t someone to really catch what you just said: "I love you too, but you can’t just…"

ANYWAY, as I was saying, absolute conditional expression of any emotion with the apex of this...dysfunction (?) being an inability to give compliments.

So it’s New Year’s Day morning & I make the comment about dropping the ball first thing of the year, fully aware that my hilariousness and brilliance would be met with maybe a chuckle.

“You should sell that to Seinfeld”

Naturally, I asked him if he was still drunk, given the amount of moonshine he had consumed between the hours of 9p 2019 and 1a 2020.


So let’s now put this snapshot into the bigger picture of January 1st, 2020.

I woke up vomiting, but would quickly learn after puking in our hotel room bathroom, the lobby bathroom, and all 3 bathrooms in my boyfriend’s parents house within maybe an hour and half time frame, that this was not hangover vomiting.
Our flight was early afternoon, the most ideal time for flying on the most unideal day to fly. If we were hungover from New Year’s Eve, we’d both be fine by the time we got through security. 

Ahh, but again, this was not a hangover situation, this was a god damn a stomach bug situation--one that I will forever blame on those god damn boiled peanuts I was so insistent and incessant about getting our entire day in Gatlinburg. I knew the establishment serving them was basically just, like, a sketchy local hometown carnival food stand in brick & mortar form...but somehow more low grade than the sketchiest carnival food stand at the sketchiest hometown carnival (probably found somewhere near Panama City Beach, if I had to guess).
Zagat rated negative stars type place, you know? 

Anyway, here’s my question for you: have you ever puked in 20 bathrooms in one day?
In multiple bathrooms in multiple AIRPORTS in multiple states?
Have you ever puked into a barf bag on a plane next to a understandably totally fucking repulsed stranger?
Do you know what it’s like to have a stomach bug in the fucking stratopshere on the first day of the year?

If you have, you’ll totally understand saying out loud that you’re just ridding yourself of all of your 2019 toxins while hearing that little animated Lizzie McGuire in your head (who, for whatever reason looks like Lizzie & not you) taunts you:
"This year is gonna fucking suck.”

10 days later, I was unexpectedly let go from my job.

A somewhat traumatic flying experience followed by a totally traumatic life experience within 10 days. 2020 couldn’t get worse, right?

 “Muahaha” 

 [*turn around to respond to laughter*

*scoot back from random (invisible) stranger manically laughing*]

“Uh fucking excuse you”

[*roll eyes dramatically while muttering*]
“...the fuck is he wearing a Winnie the Pooh mask for?”

 

*****

Virginia Woolf incomplete

Anyone Virgina Woolf fans? Feel like this might be one of the weirdest questions to be asked, even by 2020 standards.
I really love Virgina Woolf and I spend a lot of time thinking about the artists I fangirl super hard over, who have emotionally impacted me so deeply...
and how they offed themselves.
It’s bleak as fuck, I know, I know, but hear me out about the fascinating aspect of it: artists, unsurprisingly, get real creative, disturbingly creative, if you will, about how to do it.

Virginia Woolf had quite a few suicide attemps because, you know, the Freuedian analysis form of therapy and presumably being prescribed lots of Lithium.
Do y’all know the story of her successful suicide attempt? No? Again, not denying this shit is bleak, but please, gather round and hear the tale of how one of the greatest minds of their generation tragically took their own lives because nobody would actually really try to help her through her depression.
Women can’t be deeply depressed like men, y’all. Or funny, while we’re on the topic. 

Alright, seriously though, she filled her coat pocket with stones & walked into River Ouse. Poor woman went out by perhaps the most painful death by drowning.

As I said, I’ve thought about this before, and only recently had this realization: how the fuck were the pockets that big on a woman’s coat, especially in the early 40’s. Also, she filled her pockets with stones. STONES. Stones? 

It’s just all very perplexing because stones are the most lightweight, commonly found geological formation and, as I pointed out early, women’s pockets are so tiny.


*****

weddings are weird

It’s weird that the audience at weddings cry when the bride walks down the aisle. 

Before I continue with that though, using the word “audience” to describe the guests seated during a wedding ceremony was my first instinct, but it felt like probably not the most laconic choice. I really tried to rack my brain about if there is a commonplace term that’s just, like, a blanket description of the guests sitting down to watch the ceremony. I’m sure there is one, not in my lexicon though, so I decided to stick with the audience b/c it properly emphasizes the weirdness of a wedding ceremony

Like, when you take more than literally 5 seconds to think about it, exchanging promises with your significant other that are highly specific to your relationship and probably more so on the generic side about your love of one another RIGHT BEFORE being legally bound together until death (or, more likely, infidelity or boredom) do y’all part, must rank in the Top 5 Most Intimate Moments of most people’s lives, right? But instead, we find it totally normal to have this moment in front of a shit ton of people, most of whom either one or both people in the couple probably don’t even really like all that much. Nevertheless, they shelled out a sum of money likely equal to their combined student loan debts to get SUPER dressed up, arguably the most dressed up they’ll ever be, and say this shit in front of all their guests. 

It’s all very performative, so naturally “audience” is the perfect right/wrong word choice.

Alright, so weddings: weird. Established that part. People crying when they see the bride walk down the aisle: also very fucking weird & here’s why:

First of all, nobody cries when the groom just, like, shows up without any grandiose entrance at the side of the altar. Most people aren’t even paying attention when the groom perfectly executes his haphazardly directed blocking. Also, like, the groom doesn’t walk down the aisle too. That’s just yet another item to add to the compilation of  reasons weddings are weird list).

So nobody sees the groom & even tears up (except maybe his mom), but once the highly anticipated bride song starts, everyone stands up (inherently just knowing that this is what you’re supposed to do as an audience at this moment which is, again, fucking weird) on cue and gets all weepy as they watch the bride take for-fucking-ever to walk down the aisle.

Why the fuck does this happen? If you’re “just so happy for the couple”, I’ll give you a pass for your tears if you also were crying at the sight of the groom.

 The group of fake individuals I didn’t actually survey for this query told me the cry because either they’re “just so happy for her” or because “she just looks so beautiful.”

Okay, okay, okay. Wait, what? I’ll save you the rant about why we shouldn’t be so happy that tears of joy come out for a woman getting married, because I want you all to keep listening & know if even a trace of implied feminism is detected, a lot of you will probably unintentionally start spacing out. It’s okay, I get it. But can I just say this: let’s say this bitch got her dream job. You’d be “just so happy for her,” obvz, but WOULD YOU CRY when you heard the news?

Now take that question and apply it to the second response as to why people are crying. I’m to make this the bold sweeping statement: none of you have ever fucking cried from seeing a person who looked particularly beautiful that day. Tell me you have, I’ll tell you you’re a fucking psycho if you do though. 

Like, just imagine being in the office at work one day.

[*long pause*]
That’s a crazy thought, right? That’s you'll actually be back working in the office among your hated colleagues someday.

Anyway, imagine being at the office at work one day and one of your favorite coworker comes in and looks different than they usually do. It’s someone you see often, but on this day, there’s just something about them--maybe their hair or maybe their makeup or maybe their expensive new clothes they’ll only wear once (?)--that strikes you as looking particularly beautiful: DO YOU CRY WHEN YOU SEE THEM?? Absolutely fucking not.

The only people who have the right to be crying besides the fools getting married is the bridal party, because they have had the most stressful day (preceded by pretty stressful months of dealing with planning shit & calming down the bride-to-be & draining their bank account for this single day that they can’t not be part of) & this is the one chance they get to cry out all the stress without anyone thinking anything of it.

 

*****

descent into madness on socials incomplete  

Alright, we have to talk about this: how much fun have secretly had watching everyone you’ve ever known’s gradual descent  into madness on their preferred social media platform over the past 400 months of quarantine?

 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Oct. 22, 2017

When I was 16, I used to always say I wanted to drop out of high school and become a stand-up comedian, with my first bit going something along the lines of “So, I just dropped out of high school to pursue the dream of becoming a stand-up comedian, even though female stand-up comedians aren’t funny.”

& the audience would sit there offended, because they figured the “even though..” would be followed by “I know it’s so hard to actually make a living in stand-up” & not a sexist remark made by a 16 year old high school drop out.

But let’s face it, female comedians just aren’t funny…

~
So things kind of just ended with the guy I was starting to see, again.
And when I say again, I mean this obviously happens often.
I know what you’re thinking, I wasn't expecting the lack of surprise in your faces.
Jokes on you all, because I'm around myself 24hrs a day & I completely saw this reaction coming.

Things were going well for the total of three weeks we were involved. We met at a concert, hit it off, & exchanged numbers instead of IG handles like we did way back in the first decade of this century. We fell into this beautiful, prolonged text conversation--sending paragraphs like we were exchanging romantic letters in the time when people died from the common cold.

For THREE weeks, THREE weeks we were texting like this before we decided to meet up again in person.

Apparently the extent of which I talk is only charming in written form, where you can't hear my valley girl accent & can't tell that I speak almost exclusively in sarcasm flooded with adverbs.

I'm getting to that age, though, when people I went to high school with are getting married to other people I went to high school with.
I'm getting to the age when those same people are reproducing.

Let me put this into perspective for you: I went to high school in Plant City, Florida, world renowned for their STRAWBERRIES. Seriously, next time you buy strawberries, check the label. If they aren't from Cali, they're from Plant City.
The school is "conveniently" located 5 miles from any gas station & across the street from a cow pasture. There is ONE road that leads to the school. Just one single road. Our completely defeated football team got new uniforms every year & the principal was a former head cheerleader who graduated from that same school 40 years ago.
People wore camo as a fashion statement...
& those people are the ones getting married & having babies. Do you understand the fear in my voice now?

Anyway, that's happening down south & meanwhile, I'm bombing at an amateur comedy hour at 11pm on a Tuesday.

It's not that I necessarily want to be single, but it's the fact that I have an impressive lack of game. It's not an inability to talk to guys, no, it's the ability to talk and talk and talk to guys.
I find myself diving into a tangent & see their interest fading quickly. But I don't stop rambling when I recognize this, instead..instead I apologize for talking too much & continue talking!!
& on top of that, I'm honest. Brutally honest.
I don't even try to make myself sound impressive. I just lay all my flaws out there. I'm never on time to anything, I'm impatient, I lose valuable items on accident constantly. 

Needless to say, we went on our first date and I never heard from him again.

~

I'm so terrible at managing money that I have trouble figuring out budget tracking apps.
Seriously, these applications are designed by brilliant people to dumb down accounting to people who don't even know how to go about getting a personal accountant.

These apps break shit down as simply as possible.
Even at the very first question, I'm stumped.
Input income as of today’s date…
So, am I supposed to put how much money I'll make this month or the amount of money I have in my bank account?
Because trust me, even though the math adds up--
(& math is actually a strong point for me. I know my time tables, guys. Even the hard ones like the 9s)
--but somehow, somehow there is always less money in my bank account than there should be.

I check my bank statements:
Coffee, coffee, MTA Vending machine, coffee, Target (whoa, $137 at Target. I just went for bobbypins, quinoa, & tampons)

Then, then it starts to get even more cringeworthy...

Bar, bar, coffee?? 1:20am, bar, cash withdrawl of $50 with a seventeen dollar ATM convenience fee (you know I'm exaggerating, but these bodgea atm withdrawl fees are truely outrageous), pizza, bar. Lyft home. except...wait--
Bar?!??
But even still...
Shouldn't I still have more money than this?

As I'm contemplating this as my screen refreshes another $30 is deducted from my account from pending electronic tip amounts being closed out.

~

It's a Friday & I’m eating lunch at a deli with table seating upstairs. There's a woman across the room on the phone with her insurance company, claiming she lost all of her 4 of her pain medication prescriptions on a business trip.
I'm already doubting the legitimacy of her sob story.

She tries to sound professional, but can't hide the hysterics in her voice as she explains her doctor wrote her new prescriptions (big pharma shout out), but the pharmacy won't fill them because her insurance company won't let her.

After a pause, she starts speaking normally until after her first word “I’m” turns into an immediate scream that resembles my Arab father when I'd leave the house in anything but pants in 11th grade “a member! I’M A MEMBER & you’re telling me I have to call another number & stay on hold for ANOTHER HOUR”
Again, I immediately begin doubting the legitimacy of her claims.

Nobody has the patience to stay on hold for an hour in 2017, especially not her with what I've seen from the escalation of this reaction in the past 3 minutes. Plus, everywhere has a call back option these days.
My logic is interrupted by her screaming “BITCH” before slamming her phone on the table & picking it back up right as it hits to dial the next number.

A stranger a few seats down from her laughs in solidarity.
The fuck is going on here?

She gets through to the next person within seconds, mind you, before her alleged sob story is being repeated. This time shit. is. dire.
These pills are medically necessary. You don't understand the pain she's in.
Again, there is a pause & we’re all hit with her rage energy, like you just walked into room of alt-right neo-nazis on steroids and cocaine after Obama was elected for another term.

“FUCK YOU” she hangs up & keeps screaming “fuck you” into the dead line...or maybe to Siri, who knows?
Her comrade stranger lets out this noise that sounds like he wants it to mean “Fuck the man” but really says  “I took some roxies before I ordered my sloppy joe.”

I finish my veggie wrap & walk back to work, make believing I have faith in our society, because I have to bottle up the fact that I don't, at least until my shift is over.