Tuesday, May 26, 2009

It's time for Bitch Fest 2009. I am apologizing in advance as none of this is intended to hurt anyone's feelings, though I am very aware of the fact that someone may find something in this post with which they don't agree and take umbrage. I apologize for that, and ask that you please remember I don't intend to offend anyone.

I'm tired.
I'm tired of being grumpy.
I'm tired of not wanting to hang out with my friends.
I'm tired of not having the motivation to do anything to stop being grumpy.
I'm tired of trying to figure out ways to stop being grumpy.
I'm tired of feeling like I can't get a break.
I'm tired of having no vacation time.
I'm tired of not being allowed to have opinions in certain settings.
I'm tired of being cut off when I try to speak.
I'm tired of taking everyone else's happiness as a personal slight because I'm not happy.
I'm tired of not being happy.
I'm tired of feeling like I'm not good enough, no matter how hard I try.
I'm tired of trying to prove I'm good enough when it should be glaringly obvious by now that I am.
I'm tired of looking for silver linings.
I'm tired of icky, gloomy weather.
I'm tired of it being cold all the time.
I'm tired of the Cubs losing.
I'm tired of not having Mark DeRosa around when our team is falling apart and really needs a good utility guy who can fill in for all the guys who seem to have caught the flu formerly known as Swine Flu.
I'm tired of being tired.
I'm tired of working twice as hard as most of the people around me, or at least feeling like I do.
I'm tired of being hated for some unknown reason - at least tell me why you hate me so I can have some respect for you.
I'm tired of liking boys who don't like me back.
I'm tired of being liked by the wrong boys.
I'm tired of people not following through.
I'm tired of being told I'm wonderful and missed only so I can be ignored and forgotten for extended periods of time.
I'm tired of looking in the mirror and seeing pretty but empty.
I'm tired of fighting so hard for everything I do.

I'm sorry. I really am. I love my friends and I love my family and there are a lot of things about my life that are really good. I have a good apartment with clean carpets now. I have friends who put up with me when I fall into year-long funks like this. I have a brilliant, supportive, loving family. I have a job that pays me enough so that for the first time probably ever, I don't have to worry about money. I have four guitars and a bass in my living room. I have this fantastic brain and this body that, while not perfect, functions really well and can do a lot of amazing things. I like having this plan, but at the same time, it's a longer-term plan so any movement on that front is very slow and there are certain parties who aren't participating in my plan and it's kind of essential that they do or there is no plan (trust me, it's not you - I love it that so many people have sent a little "you can do it" note. Thank you for that). I'm just...frustrated. And feeling stuck. And you know how when you're frustrated and feeling stuck it can be hard to see the good things. You stop noticing that you have lovely hands and you focus on the paper cuts you got moving furniture and cleaning carpets or the fact that your one finger just kind of hurts all of the time but you don't know why.

Side note:
They're = they are
There = a location
Their indicates possession
Study this. Learn this. Use these three words correctly in business correspondence with me and the chances of me throwing a stapler at your head are much lessened. I mean, really. A person without a firm grasp of the English language is left to do his/her job the best way he/she knows how and I find myself wondering where the best place to get a degree in micromanagement is.

I know that complaining like this is very unattractive, but it kind of had to be done. It's been building up for a while (in case you couldn't tell). I will get out of this. I have to get out of this. I think I'm kind of hoping at this point that when the day comes that I do get out of this grump-fest, I will still have one or two friends left, even if they are my cell mates in the loony bin. Or that perhaps, when viewed in the right light with the proper amount of wine in one's system, that my frustration and stuck-ed-ness might be found entertaining. There is beauty in pain, my friend. Or should I say "Their."

Monday, May 25, 2009

I realize that one thing I have gotten very bad at recently is keeping in touch. It will take me a couple of days to respond to an email or return a phone call. I know this. I would like to apologize for this now, even though I'm not sure it's going to get any better in the near future.

The main reason I would like to apologize for it is because I know how annoying it is when you send someone an email or a text message and they just don't respond. I'm very good at finding the people who just don't respond and it is rather frustrating. I know it's frustrating and I'm sorry that my slow responses frustrate other people so chalk this one up as me being a hypocrite for complaining about people not responding, but it's annoying. In a professional setting, there really is no excuse for not responding. In a personal setting, it just makes the non-responded-to person feel worthless.

So anyway. I'm sorry I've been bad at keeping in touch.

Friday, May 22, 2009

The plastic bag.
So thin.
So handy.
Your beautiful handles make things easy to carry.
Your bright graphic prints remind me where I just shopped.

Okay, enough of that. This isn't about poetry; this is about plastic bags and the stores that still use them. Primarily grocery stores.

Now, it is my understanding that 95% of the world is made out of plastic because plastic is durable, cheap, and it lasts forever. I remember when grocery stores originally switched from paper bags to plastic bags - the big selling points were that plastic bags have handles (which at the time, paper grocery bags did not) and that they were stronger than the paper bags which would dissolve if your frozen foods start to thaw on the way home. What I don't remember is the momentous event that convinced an entire population that plastic bags are flimsy and unreliable and that therefore, putting more than one box of tissues into a double-bagged plastic bag would cause catastrophe on the way from the store to one's car, or from one's car to one's home.

What amuses me almost to no end (I have to sleep sometimes) is that while most major grocery chains are making marked steps to "green" their stores, their baggers are still using a minimum of four plastic bags for each customer. If a customer asks for paper bags, half of the contents of the paper bags get wrapped in plastic first so they don't leak on the paper. Or, the paper bag will be placed in a plastic bags so that the customer can take advantage of the oh so useful handles provided by the plastic bag.

My other personal favorite has to do with stores that have paper bags with handles on them and their need to double bag those bags, usually because the handles break. You would think that someone would design a paper bag with relatively durable handles so that for the first time in thirty years, a person buying orange juice and tomato soup at the store could leave with only one bag. This cultural obsession we have with bags is ludicrous. When I ask the person at the checkout counter to either put it all in one bag, or let them know that I don't need a bag at all for the pack of gum I just purchased, they look at me as if I have suddenly sprouted several new limbs that are about to begin beating the checkout worker about the head and neck.

Which is why, whenever I can, I use the self-checkout lane. I have, in the relatively recent past, fit a carton of orange juice, three cans of soup, assorted fruits and vegetables, and a box of crackers all into one standard grocery store plastic bag and walked a half-mile home with said bag and ZERO incidents. And when I got home, I felt a mixture of pride for using plastic in the manner it was intended to be used, and guilt for having to use a plastic bag in the first place because I forgot my reusable bags at home. Oh well.
In general, the human body is pretty great. The simplest things, like how a paper cut heals, are really simply amazing when you think about how much time and effort and energy is involved. And then you sit back and think of all of the other amazing things it can do, and how well it adapts when one particular function isn't functioning. Pretty cool, yes?

I would also like to mention that I am a fan of the human form from the aesthetic perspective as well. Women with their lovely curves. Men with their shoulders and abs and forearms. Odd as it sounds, find me a man with great forearms and I kind of melt. But eyes are beautiful and smiles are beautiful and hands and hearts and calves and noses -- the human form is, in general, attractive. And I'll even admit that when my own personal anatomy comes into close contact with someone else's personal anatomy, the end result can be pretty great (depending largely on who he is and how we feel about one another).

I would also like to point out that whatever a person decides to do to his or her own anatomy should really be up to them - pierce it, draw on it, poke it, prod it, stroke it, rub it, tickle it, flick it, lick it, shave it, flaunt it, hide it, dye it, bleach it, wax it, trim it, oil it, cut it, bind it, put weird things in it, use it, abuse it, whatever. As long as it isn't hurting anyone else, I believe that a person should be able to do to his or her own anatomy whatever he or she chooses (and I reserve the right to amend this statement if and when I ever have to apply it to my own children).

That being said, keeping in mind that I like the human form, keeping in mind that I like the male human form in particular, and keeping in mind that I believe in the freedom to do what you want in the privacy of your own home, I really very strongly suggest that if you must stand naked in your living room and masturbate at all hours of the day that you please close your blinds. I understand that it feels good. Believe me, I'm a fan of masturbation. I understand that doing it in front of an open window may even be exciting for the possibility that someone else might see you doing it. I very humbly ask, however, that I not have to be that person. Unless you happen to be my lover at the time (and even then it's iffy), I don't want to have to see that. You have every right to do it, and I applaud the little seventy-year-old man across the courtyard who is physically able to still do that, but honestly, it kind of creeps me out and makes me uncomfortable in my own house, particularly because your window looks right into my bedroom window which kind of makes me wonder what it is you're thinking about while you are playing with yourself in your living room at 5pm on a Thursday. Or 10pm on a Tuesday. Or noon on a Sunday. Really. Do you do anything else? I've seen you entering and exiting the building, and I'm pretty sure you occasionally put pieces of paper up in your window because you know I can (and don't want to be able to) see what you're doing which makes one or the other of us holding the door for the other one a little, well, awkward, so I know you must do something, sometimes. Is it just groceries that you leave the building for? Go grab some food to keep the stamina up for the next round? You're so fully clothed when you're out - why can't you do that more at home? Or could we maybe work something out so that I know I need to close my blinds by 9pm because that's when the games begin, but I'm allowed to open them again at 8am with the assurance that you won't be standing there, pistol in hand, so to speak? Yes, you have the right to do what you want in your home, but so do I, and I would really like to not have to see that with such alarming frequency. Please?

I'm just sayin'.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Let's be honest - I've been very not okay for a very long time now. And truth be told, I'm sick of it. I'm sure my friends and family are sick of it, too. I've been a pill. I barely leave my house and I'm not very much fun when I do. I'm grumpy all of the time and have a very short temper.

I would like, if I may, to apologize for all of that right now. I'm not saying that I'm done with it, but I just want you to know that I am aware of it and I'm sorry for it.

So how do we fix it? I need to get back in touch with how to be me. It's funny - I started climbing the corporate ladder, and I thought I'd try the persona on for a little while, and it took me all of two months to realize that it's really not me and I really don't like it. I don't like having the purse that you carry over one shoulder instead of the messenger type bag you wear slung across your chest. I don't like the long hours with no lunch break. I don't like the fighting to try to keep my head above water. And I really really really really REALLY don't like not having a creative output or a creative community. I don't like putting all of that on hold for the sake of my day job. I don't like being tired all of the time. I don't like being grumpy. I don't like being a pill.

So we've identified what I don't like, we need to look at what I do like. I do like creating things. I do like knowing that there is more to my life than my day job. I do like knowing that I'm a more unique individual than the girl with the giant shoulder-slung purse clocking in at 7:45am and leaving at 5:00pm.

I have some ideas for how to get back there. It's not going to be easy and it's not going to be pretty and it may be a fantastic failure, but even the thought of trying feels wonderful. Like I'm on my way back to being me again. I know I've been a pill and I probably don't have the right to ask, but if you have a little spare positivity lying around, I could use a "You can do it."