It’s been a whirlwind of a month. I keep expecting it to be mid-September already, but it is still only the end of August.
In roughly chronological order:
- Packed up and left Seattle on August 19th, two weeks short of my original plan, so that I could
- Pick up my brother from the airport in San Francisco, because he wanted to visit schools and crash at my place.
- Arrived back in my SF apartment a whole 45 hours before my brother’s arrival.
- Since the subletter in my room was still there through the end of the month, I stayed in the living room – along with my brother – with a car still full of my belongings that I had no room to unpack yet,
- Bringing the population of our 3BR, 1B apartment to 5 people. Cozy, but surprisingly not as chaotic as I feared it would be. My housemates were amazing about dealing with all of these moving pieces, and so warmly welcoming to my brother.
- Spent 3.5 days shuttling my brother back and forth between SF and Berkeley, as well as two trips to Noisebridge and a visit to the (misnamed) Buffalo Paddock to see the bison.
- Climbed. Barbequed with the Programmer. Climbed some more.
- Ate a lot of Mexican food. Drank a lot of Mexican Coke.
It’s finally calmed down around here for me to actually think about the fact that I’ve just returned from spending two-and-a-bit months living in Seattle. To reminisce and reflect on my summer.
There are currently a lot of questions rolling around in my head concerning my Seattle trip, but they are being put gently to the side for the moment while I realign, finish unpacking, and try to bring my life back into some semblance of order. There are also friends to catch up with, a new Citadel location to visit, climbs to climb, and work to finish.
Plus, one of my housemates just got Bananagrams, and the other is racking up all kinds of outdoor climbing gear, so, you know. I’ll be a little busy.
But, no fear! I do plan to write more, soon.
And I love you all.
Just hurt me.
Just fucking hurt me already.
I’ve lately been thinking in verse,
composing thoughts and inner dialogue in
short interlocking fragments.
Quite a change from
my more usual
I’ve been remembering my childhood
in the form of hot, hot sand,
hot rubber, hot cement, hot sun.
Of ants on sidewalks skirting
around my feet, constantly moving.
Of the crisp crunch of dry leaves underfoot
Of white-dusted hands kneading dough,
Of bare feet running tiptoe over hot brick patios,
Of awaking to mourning doves, robins, chickadees.
And I’ve been thinking with my senses,
most especially with my nose.
Prying into hidden memories and
brushing against forgotten chests of scent.
The dankness of basements, the stale tang
of garages, the leathery tannin of fallen oak leaves.
I can taste those scents against my hard palate.
All the more ironic, then,
that I am struck down by a cold
that renders my nose useless.
I’m gone. No one’s heard from me in months. My family thinks I’ve died, or been kidnapped, or worse – eloped.
I’ve run away, bare-footed in a shredded dress, running like I’m being chased by wolves. I gave birth under a full moon and cradled by pine boughs, listening to those same wolves howl. Her father? A stranger I seduced at a bar in Tucson and brought back to my cheap motel room one cloud-streaked night. The babe’s eyes are gold-flecked, she is a wild little changeling.
I’m living out of my car, driving from place to stranger place, chasing after tornados, trying to bottle lightning to feed my hungry baby. She is quiet, wary, watchful. I wonder.
I fell into a cave while hunting down my next meal (a fat, feisty quail), my stomach groaning over the fatal miscalculation. My hands and fingers press against the rough rock walls, poor substitute eyes in this perpetual darkness. I’m afraid to fall asleep, lest I lose the ability to differentiate my dreams from reality.
Or, I’ve been too busy to write here lately.
I am sitting in front of my computer, barely focused on the work at hand, when I feel the air stir behind me like a shadow. In the time it takes my eyes to widen reflexively, I feel his hand slip up my throat, his arm pressing firmly against my chest as he pushes me bodily against the wall.
His breath is hot in my ear, low growling whispers drawing dark images in my head.
And just as quickly he’s gone, substance dissipated into memory. I have to remember to breathe against the ghost of his hand on my throat.
I look around. I am alone in the room.
Oh, emotional crapola abounds.
I’ve had a mood swing roller coaster the past couple of days, from ecstatic giddiness crashing into low-grade depression within hours. The low was most noticeable after a couple deplorable and uninspiring clothes-shopping trips, in which I despaired upon ever having an inkling of fashion sense.
Similarly, I’ve ping-ponged back and forth between going into work in the morning feeling like I am a wasted piece of flesh who will never amount to anything for working in food service to never having felt happier than when I stepped foot into a place where, for once in my life, I can truly be myself.
Oh, believe me, I fully appreciate the melodramatic senselessness of it all. As ever, I blame it on my upbringing. Living with parents whose personalities are as contrasting as black and white was sure to screw me up somehow, right? (I hear it’s also trendy with my generation to place all blame on our parentals for everything wrong with how we turned out. We are the Entitled and Victimized Generation, it seems.) When I’m not taking after my father and having all the emotional and social capabilities of a lump of coal, I wax my mother’s flavor of melodramatic and feel the world collapsing around me.
And within this big Freudian, Oedipean psychoanalytical metaphor of a life that I’ve contrived for myself, my personal sense of self gets a bit muddled and fuzzy.
And then there are nights like tonight, when I am antsy and disgruntled and want to get in an intense, emotionally riled, buzzed discussion on the state of affairs; expound upon the latest in ridiculous, head-shaking-worthy antics of some fanatical zealot group; extrapolate on ideological tangents as a mere academic curiosity and exercise with a lack of any tangible consequence. Where can I fire off with self-righteous anger while cradling my Bailey’s on the rocks? Where is my dimly lit, wood-paneled hole in the wall for meeting with fellow conspirators and shooting our mouths off about how much better we’d do things, given the chance?
How is it possible to feel so tiny and still so concretely present at the same time? I am so confused, so out of place. Once again I feel pale and passionless among so many hundreds of people who change the world with the bright flare that is their life.
Stepping back and taking it all in, there is not much else I can do except laugh at myself for these inconsequential ravings. Pay no mind, please, I don’t even know what I’m rambling about anymore.
The other thing weighing on my mind these past few days lies in a not-so-optimistic reflection of my forays into casual play thus far. I will not yet claim to experiencing actual polyamory, because I draw a distinct line between having a stable relationship with one or more partners and having multiple casual play or sexual partners. Nothing wrong with either, necessarily – just distinguishing the definitions for myself.
And, in all fairness, I have had immense fun dabbling in various types and intensities of play. I’ve had formal ritualistic roles, more playful flirting roles, and much more in the grey areas between. And it’s been an incredible and educational series of experiences so far, to be sure. Now, however, I have realized how little I’ve participated in my local community (besides, I suppose, working at the new epicenter for kink activity and community in SoMa). Since I unpacked my sparse belongings into my new home on August 11th, I’ve set foot inside the Citadel three times. In fact, I am hesitant to explore that space at all, and I think some of that reluctance can be relegated to some choice flesh-related terms: ‘meat market’ and ‘fresh meat’ being the main two.
I’d like to change that, however. Despite my lack of social grace, I’m determined to make some headway to become more of an active participant at the Citadel. After all, while I am having fun with the play relationships I have now, I cannot survive, emotionally, on that alone to any kind of satisfaction. I’m looking, in short, for more regular human company (my cilantro plants don’t count, despite their enthusiastic blooming). Not necessarily for play, just for company. I’m reluctant even to voice this desire here, because I am afraid even a whiff of whisper of “single” and “looking” and I’ll have an influx of Fetlife messages asking for me to be someone or some couple’s slave for life.
Or, more succinctly, I’ll just get messages like I used to on Alt.com: “Kneel, bitch, and beg me for the honor to be my slave!”
So if you were to come up to me at any Citadel event, in all likelihood I will decline any and all offers to play or socialize or “meet up later” with a deer-in-headlights look on my face denoting my horror at having to interact with another human being.
Case in point? Two days prior, I made a short trip to Trader Joe’s to pick up groceries, and lined up at the cash register of one cashier whose eyes I’d caught while scanning the aisles for the shortest wait. He was a cute redhead with what I think is an Irish accent (I’m useless at guessing accents). As I pulled out my wallet, we exchanged the usual cashier-customer pleasantries. Then he looked up, made eye contact, and asked, “What brings you out here on such a fine afternoon?”
I might as well have been faced with either of the Boondock brothers. As in, wow you’re hot, but why are you pointing a gun at me?
Except in this case it was, are you actually talking to me? I blinked in surprise and managed to croak out a paltry, “Um, I needed food! Ha…ha.”
I locked my lips shut after that and just concentrated on not bolting out the door. I grabbed my change, started to power-walk away, when he calls out asking if I want my receipt. I turned, grabbed it out of his hand and really did bolt for the door.
Yes, I am that awkward.
So, in closing: do I know how to laugh at myself? Are you kidding? I need no other source of entertainment. I spent my teenage years doing what teenagers do best: taking myself way too seriously. The only reason I’ve survived this long and retained my sanity is by learning to laugh at myself, and at life in general.