Monday, August 28, 2006

ain't nothin' but a heartache

I don't do YouTube. Except when my friends make me.

The RM was watching this YouTube video.
It's the one of the two chinese guys lipsynching to the Backstreet Boys.
I almost wet myself.

Saturday, August 26, 2006

It Happens in Phases

I sit in an open office 5 days a week for about 8+ hours.
Unless I step out for lunch or to do an errand in which case I'd call it 7+ hours.

And with each day there are prevailing and passing moods.

A sense of belonging
A sense of futility
A desire to dance
A desire to sing
A desire to hug people
A feeling of fuck-you-go-to-hell ness

Today I felt weightless. Like I was entirely disconnected from the ground, the world, everyone around me, everyone I know. With the smallest push I would lift away from my chair, my desk, and float through the ceiling up up up up into the void. And no one would hear me calling to them. No one would see me so far away and so deep in the dark of space and I would start to expand and pull apart in the vacuum of space, pieces of me pulled towards other things. And I thought to myself, "I have no one to tether me. No one to pull me back if I push off. What can I grab onto?"

It was strange and scary. And I thought to myself, "It's just me. I have to stop myself, keep myself from drifting away." And I looked around and couldn't find anything to hold onto. Nothing to anchor me. And I tried to think of who I could call. If I called you, for instance, and asked you: "What you do on the days that you forget to pay the gravity bill?" What would you say? What is it that holds you in place and to the ground? A person? A promise? A thought or belief? A thing? A memory? A really big rock? What? If anything ...

I looked around me and everything seemed so distant and transient. And I thought about how if I could make a sound, if I could articulate this thing happening to me an ask for help, someone might turn to me and say "Grab my hand! I got gravity to spare this month."

I thought about how I needed to confer weight to myself and everything in my life. I thought about how I needed to take the wisps of life in my hands and see them weighty and meaningful - significant. Because right now no one else will. Perhaps no one else is supposed to.

In a world light on meaning, what imparts significance comes from the minds and hearts of its inhabitants.

Over the course of the day I could feel it passing.
I hover a little but I can feel that my soles are making decent contact with the floor.

I am still here. I put a wrench in my pocket. In case the gravity gives out again. I want to have something to throw to help propel me back down.

Thursday, August 24, 2006

I don't like Michael Noer - and I've never even met him

Forbes Magazine published an opinion piece by Michael Noer entitled "Don't Marry Career Women." He advises men to steer clear of feminists and working women and educated women, especially those "career girls" with a university-level (or higher)education and make more than $30,000 a year.

Michael Noer uses published findings by social scientists to argue that marriages are more stable when women are less educated and don't work.

"Well, despite the fact that the link between work, women and divorce rates is complex and controversial, much of the reasoning is based on a lot of economic theory and a bit of common sense. In classic economics, a marriage is, at least in part, an exercise in labor specialization. "

Here the cart is leading the horse. The explanations are not drawn from the data. They are draped across the data. The same arguments that we have heard over and over again to justify restricting a women's world to a domestic one. When's the last time you've observed the world to conform to classic economic theory?

It is embarassing and infuritating to have a magazine like Forbes pay someone like Michael Noer to write an opinion piece that blames women for the ills of society, that blames women for high divorce rates, that blames women for infidelity, and blames women for their own unhappiness and the unhappiness of men.

It takes two to tango.

What Mr. Noer glosses over (even while mentioning in passing) in the midst of all of this research is :

"A few other studies, which have focused on employment (as opposed to working hours) have concluded that working outside the home actually increases marital stability, at least when the marriage is a happy one. But even in these studies, wives' employment does correlate positively to divorce rates, when the marriage is of "low marital quality." " (my italices)

Which suggests to me that marriages are stable when they are happy. And perhaps a happy marriage in whatever configuration is a rare and precious thing.

The difference between yesterday and today is that women have the option to leave unhappy marriages. They are not forced by economic inequity to stay in unhappy marriages.

That to me is a good thing.

Forbes Magazine and Michael Noer can suck my ass. Sexist Fucktards. Both of them disappoint me.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

well fuck.

Even though you know it's coming.
You have known that it was coming since very early on.
Even having a clear awareness, an understanding of the inevitable.
Every explanation rational or imaginable.

When it arrives, and maybe it arrives late, say by about two months -

it's still a punch in the gut or a flash of light outside of the peripheral vision
requiring that you sit down holding your head.

And then after a spell it starts to register that you got hit.
And then it starts to register that it hurt.
And then maybe your eyes fill up and you start to cry.

And you know you got hit because you were too much of a pussy to take responsibility for your own shit.
You were too much of a pussy to throw the punch.


Then again, maybe it's not you.
Maybe it's not you.
Maybe it's me.

Monday, August 14, 2006

zero to sixty in seconds

"Life is about the moment" he says leaning in towards her.

"I disagree," she says, "I think life is about character. The important thing is to live life in a way that is true to the self."

At which point he accuses her of being judgemental and narrow minded putting her on the defensive.

"memory is oxygen for life," he said taking her hands and pulling her close.

"I don't agree," she replies. "What sustains the fire of life is love and hate, hunger, need, tears and conflict, passion, obsession, obligation, greed, laughter ..."

"So you agree with me," he said placing his hands on her waist. "Look into my eyes. Tell me what you think." His hands slide from her waist to her ass.

Clearly, he doesn't care what she thinks as he pulls her in closer still - insisting that he knows her mind better than she does.

Really, he thinks that he can tell her what she thinks and what she desires. He tells her that he is what she desires. And thinks that if he says it enough, she will accept it to be true. If he says it enough she will let down her guard and take him. Perhaps she might even allow herself to be taken too.

All this in a span of minutes in the kitchen after meeting.


Is it too much to ask that the Bastard take her for dinner and drinks first?

Sunday, August 13, 2006

Good times never seemed so good ...

The Brooklyn Cyclones played in Coney Island at Keyspan park. I took the F train down to the end of the line and walked two blocks to the stadium to catch the game.

The Cyclones are a farm team for the NY Met's. I was told at the game that they are a single A team which makes them minor in the minor leagues. Being there made me think of the movie "Bull Durham." Every time the catcher took a time out to walk out to confer with the pitcher I imagined that they were dicussing bridal registries or whether or not to hit the mascot on the next pitch.

I thought while sitting out there that it was a great day to kick back with some friends and a beer and take in a game. 8,633 people were of the same mind on this one. I didn't have a beer and I was in the stands with co-workers whom I don't know but hey ... it ws still nice to kick back. I actually followed the game - which I have not done in the handful of times I have been to the ballpark.

As a single A team they seem to avoid having the kind of rabid angry fans that are intensely insanely competitive and guaranteed to spoil your viewing pleasure. And since it's baseball there's lots of downtime as teams cross the field and get ready to play offense or defense. Baseball is a slow game. Being there and focusing on the game slowed me down to its pace. Which was nice.

We won 6-5. At the 7th inning stretch in Keyspan Park they play "Take me out to the ballgame" they also play the chorus to "Sweet Caroline."

And on the walk back I took in the lights of the Coney Island amusement park, couples arm in arm, parents herding their children, and the smell of funnel cakes.

I wanna go back and make a day of it - do the whole Coney Island thing. Ride the rollercoaster. Get the so bad for you carnival foods. Have Nathan's hot dog. Blow money on stupid games for stupider prizes. Walk the boardwalk. And take in another Cyclones game.

Thursday, August 10, 2006

never enough Z's

I would like to see a new sleeping pill on the market.
The sleeping pills currently available are designed to
help you fall asleep.
I want a pill that makes me feel alert and rested.
A pill that could replace sleeping or stave off the
desire for it.

Cuz right now. It's all I can think about.
Placing my wee head on the pillow and closing my eyes
and having that dream where I slide down the world's
longest slide (which is probably in Florida), the air
rushing through my hair and at the bottom I fly out
and float down into the soft dark embrace of sleep.


It's my own damn fault. I should just get to bed
earlier. *shrug*

Monday, August 07, 2006

like a record baby

songs that accompany me on the subway - because I always forget to recharge my ipod

For the longest time I couldn't stop singing "Copacabana." I like to blame JS for this knowing full well that I was the one who chose to step into this trap. It is in fact a sad song. Be not fooled by the catchy magic of the Mannilow the song is about passion murder and an inconsolable loss of love.

And then it was "Under the Boardwalk." A homeless guy on the subway was playing two chords that are not in this song singing a jumble of lyrics from the song with a made up a melody. It occurred to me that he probably didn't know any other chords because he sang the lyrics to another song with another made up melody to those two chords. He had a lovely velvety voice. Someone should teach him a few Seal covers.

And then it was "Swandive." Because EO is going through a painful breakup and his take on it is that you can take the feeling of falling and turn it into a Swandive. "just spread them wings and feel the breeze and smile on the way." Reading it makes my stomach drop. It is a level of openess that I do not know if I will ever reach. And the recklessness in Ani's song wrenches at my guts in much the same way. (I have said it differently in my own life. Probably even in this damn blog. That a broken heart will heal back. It is your choice as to whether it heals back closed and tight or bigger and more open. But of course for my part the theory is a long way from the practice.)

And then it was " 6"1' " On the subway platform I asked myself if it took a city like Chicago to bring forth Liz Phair. I wondered to myself if there were future indie queens in NYC who were mixing their own girlysounds. Maybe every other woman on the train is Manhattan's answer to Liz Phair. I owe Ms. Phair a cycle of songs about vibrators and microwaveable foods. (Does it count that I sang about vibrators on tour?)

And then it was The Shins "So Says I" the song has a crowded mouthful of words tripping over each other rushed pushed feeling to it that makes my feel my heartbeat faster in my throat. I think of it in the mornings crowding into and spilling off the train to get from A to B.

red dye revolt

At the local laundromat half the dryers and most of the washing machines are broken. Some of the broken ones do not have signs on them. The only indicator that there is something wrong is that the attendant will yell at you when you try to load your clothes in them.

Some of the machines only run hot water. Which I discovered only after starting a load of darks. Lucky I sort dark from light as the two red shirts in there would have made for a lifetime of pink button down shirts. The water was the color of Hawaiian Punch through every cycle. I was saved from a classic rookie laundry mishap. Still, some of my underwear have an odd pinky cast to them now.

summer in a glass

Had my first mojito on Friday. It was as N had described it: summer in a glass. Fruity, sweet, and cooling. Since I moved to Brooklyn I can count on my left hand the number of days I have gone without having a drink. This situation is the opposite of many of my friends who on leaving grad school exclaimed that they drank so much less than they used did in grad school.

Drinking in grad school always being associated with the misery of poverty, repeated failure, an environment where a cloud of guilt hands over you because the work is never done and you are always being evaluated on one level or another. *sigh* Those were good times. (You think I jest when I say that. But lately when I think of grad school it calls to mind what Steve Dunne says in the movie "Singles" -"we had good times and we had bad times, but we had times. ")

"We had times." Amen to that.

So yeah, I've been drinking. Not with great abandon but with a constancy that probably wears at my liver and teases apart the tangle of neural spaghetti in my head. Perhaps for the better. Things have always been a bit scrambled up there and a little cell death might clear things up. Allow for a bit of judicious pruning. Who knows.

It might just be that regular work will drive a girl to drink.

a rose by any other name is rebranding

I overheard a conversation in the office about how "40 is the new 30." On my 35th birthday AG called to let me know that "30 is the new 20." I have heard that "Orange is the new pink." In case you were wondering, "I am the new you."

the reason I started this post

I wish the term "straight edge" had come into the common parlance when I was a teenager. I could have declared myself to be straight edge as opposed to being that cheerful dork who didn't drink, smoke or take mind altering substances.

Sunday, August 06, 2006

parting sucks my ass

My friend is leaving the country.
She saw me off at the train station and I did not say all those things that need to get said.

Have a safe trip.
I am happy for you.
Call me if you need anything!
I am going to miss you sooooooo much.
I love you
You better stay in touch or I'm gonna fly out there and kick ya.
and a million other things that don't even come to mind at this moment.

I didn't say them because I didn't want to start crying. And I didn't want her to start crying. She is not a cryer by nature (me, I cry at split milk.)

And I didn't want to start crying because I am really happy for her and I think this trip will bring her what she has been looking for. It is a cause for celebration not sadness. My loss is small compared to the net gains.

I didn't even get her a farewell gift or a card. Because in my current rootless state gifts look like a bunch of other crap that I need to store or cart around from place to place. Because I don't think a card exists that could express what it means to me to have her as a friend.

Used to be that nothing that happened in my life was real until we sat down and had a chat about it.

Even though our lives have changed and we have changed, I want to know this person until the day I die. And maybe I didn't say or do all of those things because I have an unshakeable faith that this a fact not merely something I want. That these things don't need to be said. There will be many occassions in the future to say them and so much more.

That being said, parting sucks my ass.

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Me vs. the MLA style handbook*****

After being at BS(TM) for about a month I have loosened up enough to check my gmail and yahoo mail.

I have not crossed the blogger line at work. I am trying to hold my ground there. But sometimes I do take a peek at my myspace.*

That being said, if an article seems even tangentially remotely rationalize-ably relevant to the biz, I read it.**

Found this life altering*** article about the plight of the nerd and why high school sucks**** so hard. I don't know if I buy the whole spiel but it certainly offers food for thought.


makes me feel naughty.

c'mon, man, research!

I am coming to realize that the working world reminds me of high school in its expectations of conformity and the weird social dynamics and hidden aspects that I know are there but can't figure out. I oscillate between blundering about like an oaf and trying to make myself invisible. I used to consider myself somewhat normal but now realize that the context was a scientific environment which is pretty much in line with that saying about the one-eyed man in a city of the blind. In the working world it would appear that depth perception gives one a powerful advantage.

Regrettably, the verb suck is my new favorite:

"that sucks."
"this sucks ass."
"if they don't like it, they can suck it."
"ISI sucks my ass!" (said within earshot of co-workers on the elevator)

I am hoping that it is a phase that I will grow out of.

I never learned how to footnote. I am improperly experimenting with it today because yesterday I met M and J who are professional book people. I'll bet they know their grammar and usages, after all, they get paid to judge the writing of others. Five asteriks into this post I realize first off - that it might help for me to actually pick up a copy of the MLA style handbook (which looks awfully heavy) if I want to write properly and second off - that living in NYC is feeding the freaky self-conscious neurotic in me. It's only been a month.

In NYC and on the east coast, there seem to be unspoken rules or scripts to all kinds of transactions and modes of being. Every block is its own microclimate with its own social ecology. Each with it's own rules and scripts known best by the locals. Some you can reason out for yourself through common sense or careful observation. Some will get explained to you in nice or not so nice tones of voice by the locals. Travelling from block to block, neighborhood to neighborhood - there are so many different codes, and customs, and expectations of conformity in so many different modes that it can be tricky keeping track of how things are done.

Maybe that's why people become regulars. In part to go back to the places they like but perhaps also to be in places where they know the drill and understand the local modes and codes.

Maybe that's part of why I love my corner of Brooklyn. It is beautiful and green and friendly and peaceful. I love it for so many reasons. And while I hate to admit it, certainly part of why I love it here is that it is a bit slower and well ... bougie and gentrified ... some might say, uh, it's a little bland. Merely in comparison with other parts of the 5 burroughs. But for me as a fish out of water that's good. There's less shit to track. It still has so much to offer but does so in a much gentler and manageable way. When I get home I am not struggling with navigating the local means and mores just to get a goddamned sandwich. I can just get a goddamned sandwich.

AND I just broke my no blogging at werk rule to edit this post. *kiss*