Monday, April 29, 2013

"Before you can read me you've got to learn how to see me. I said, Free your mind and the rest will follow. Be color blind. Don't be so shallow."*

   En Vogue’s epic R&B tune “Free Your Mind” found its way onto my iPhone the other morning and I was so excited. I hadn’t heard the song in years and it’s always brought back memories of my childhood. I was especially excited to hear the opening lyrics: “Prejudice. Wrote a song about it. Like to hear it? Hear it go.”

   When I was 10, my best friend and next-door neighbor, Rachel, choreographed a dance routine to this song. She taught it to me in her dad Mike's pristine garage (I know it was pristine because I often had to help clean it...and pick up twigs from his lawn and sing lullabies to his rose bushes). Once I had the moves down (which probably took a really long time, because I’m bad with moves), we taught it to our two younger sisters—Ouisa and Emily. I remember it involved a lot of cartwheels and the classic move of running our hands from our ankles to our thighs—like we were putting on invisible thigh-high stockings. (I just tried to spell that “stalkings.” Weird. And surely somehow Freudian?)

   A week of hard-core rehearsals later, I was very excited to perform the dance for our parents. Rachel had the boom box all plugged in to the side of the Kelleys’ house, and we lined up lawn chairs for our parents to sit on while we danced. The littler Kelley kids sat on the grass in front of us, and Hannah Kelley and Penelope were just babies, so most likely parents held them on their laps. To the outside world, it probably looked gloriously middle-class American and family-oriented.
Boom box with 90's style effects.

   And so we danced. And it was spectacular.

   But when I was in my car on the Hollywood Freeway listening to “Free Your Mind” at 9:15 a.m. on Thursday morning, the whole event suddenly took on a different shade. For one thing, the opening lyrics after the intro I wrote above are:

“I wear tight clothing/

High-heeled shoes/

That doesn’t mean that I’m a prostitute.

I like rap music/

Wear hip-hop clothes/

That doesn’t mean that I’m out selling dope.”

   Um…how the hell did our parents sit through this performance without laughing their asses off or dragging us off to our bedrooms?

   I still love the song, and the message is on point: just because I’m a sexy black woman who dates other races and wears scandalous duds, it doesn’t mean I’m a slut or a traitor to black people: “Be colorblind. Don’t be so shallow.”

   HOWEVER: what were a bunch of little, Catholic, white girls doing with this dance routine, which, in the clear light of 20 years of retrospect, seems ever-so-slightly…I don’t know…inappropriate?

   Our parents must have been frozen in shock and maybe mild-to-moderate nausea. I’m sure they wondered if we knew what the terms “prostitute” and “dope” meant, and I’m guessing they figured we did, since besides the repeated cart-wheeling, we kept acting like we were putting on our thigh-highs for a night of street walking. 
Really patient parents at an outdoor concert circa 1992.

   I’d like to think that they were trying really hard not to laugh at us. I’m sure Mike Kelley was probably smirking. Joan Kelley was probably rolling her eyes. But my parents were pretty straightedge at the time, and I’m sure that The Beatles-Beethoven-and Ravi Shankar-loving pair of them were wondering when and how this decidedly urban music had entered their 10-and-7-year-old daughters' worlds. 
   But they were kind and wise enough to applaud the performance and leave it alone. We were never admonished for play-acting at being hookers, and it seems to me that they played it just right in that moment. To draw attention to the lyrics would have only invited weeks or months of uncomfortable questions from us to which they would have to find clever answers (i.e. lies).

   Many years later, when I was in high school, my favorite pair of jeans went missing. They were wide-legged and made of thin denim and they’d split up the outer thighs (through no fault of my own). I’d proceeded to pin them at intervals with safety pins and I thought they were epically bad ass and I wore them everywhere with my black combat boots and long, cheetah-print coat. And one day during my junior year of high school they mysteriously disappeared. Mom never admitted to it, but I’m pretty sure they went into the garage garbage can sometime in the dead of night. Mom couldn’t take any chances that I’d turn into the dope-selling prostitute my childhood hinted at. Though, to reiterate, the song specifically stated, “That DOESN’T mean that I’m a Prostitute.”

*"Free Your Mind" by the incredible (though not very enduring) all-girl 90's group En Vogue. 

Thursday, April 25, 2013

"I bet we've known each other for a million years. And I bet we'll know each other for a million more. Oh it's like I started breathing on the night we kissed. And I can't remember what I ever did before. What would we do baby, without us? What would we do, baby, without us? And there ain't no nothing we can't love each other through. What would we do, baby, without us? Sha-la-la-la."*

   Everything is so wonderful! I've been downing Ashwaganda Root as a solution to my anxiety and maybe it's working and maybe it's a hard-core placebo effect, but I feel somewhat calmer and happier. Yay!
   And here's the most exciting news ever: Family Ties—in its entirety—is now available on Netflix instant stream. Someone up there is listening to me!!!! So now I’ve got my life plans all worked out for the next 1-2 months. Hooray!
Total dreamboat. Looks like he's 12. He's actually 21.
   Okay, this post is a scramble, and that’s not just a clever pun (as you will soon see). Lots of cool things have been happening to me lately. Not really cool things, but things that are mildly amusing but which make me wicked excited anyway. (Having written that, now I’m thinking about how lame I am. I shouldn’t have gone on with that disclaimer for so long. Deep breath. Moving on.)
   I made a hard-boiled egg for lunch yesterday and look what happened:
Identical twins!
   It was twins! I seriously sent this photo to at least half a dozen (no pun intended! wham!) people and no one has responded about the coolness of it. Am I alone in thinking that a double yolk is super fascinating on its own and even more fascinating when it’s in hard-boiled form? I ate would-be twins yesterday! Come on, people! I ate twins!
   And now you see how amazing my scrambled pun was. (I’m very disorganized today. Apologies.)
   Ok, so yesterday I very nearly soaked my iPhone (iPhone, iPhone) with hand sanitizer. I was waiting for the bathroom at a restaurant and reading the promotions on the wall outside. Frequently, restaurants here in LA will have random displays with little take-home postcard advertisements and the like. This was a mini-spaceship looking machine. I read only something about the germs on my phone and saw the display underneath. And then I thought I could freely sanitize all the germs from my phone. I ran back to the table and got my phone and tried to read the instructions on how to sanitize it. And…last minute before disaster I discovered it wasn’t a phone sanitizer. It was a hand sanitizer. So…once again I was embarrassed by my inability to read the directions. I was this close to bathing my precious iPhone (iPhone, iPhone) in hand sanitizer. Ugh.
Very close to being a terrible situation for iPhone.
   And last but not least, did you ever think about how much soap we probably eat every year? I've been thinking about it a lot lately. It's especially scary for those of us that have to hand-wash our dishes and aren't super excellent at rinsing. I’m guessing that for those of us without dishwashers, our poo is at least 5% soap. 

   Food for thought.
   Sorry about the lameness of this post. But the quality of the posts is directly related to the quality of my life: and my life is kind of embarrassingly dull. Oh well.
*Theme song from Family Ties (by Jeff Barry and Tom Scott, 1982). 

Sunday, April 21, 2013

"I read you got shot five times in the tabloids." "It's not true. He didn't come anywhere near my tabloids."*

   Much of my day is spent imagining how my life would be better if I were born in a different time period. I’ve said before that I would’ve been a hot piece of ass in Jane Austen times (the Regency Period?). I’m also fairly confident that I could’ve done really well as an Antebellum Southern belle (though I know I would’ve complained a lot about almost everything: heat, corset’s, farm smells, etc.). When I was in high school I was convinced I should’ve been a teenager in the late 60’s (presumably so I could smell like patchouli, listen to Led Zeppelin and smoke weed all the time without judgment…because those were my teenage ambitions). Lately I’m into picturing how sweet life would be if I were an actress in the 30’s or 40’s.
   If I were a movie starlet in the 30’s or 40’s and had a studio contract somewhere solid (I'm talking MGM or Warner's...none of that risky RKO bullshit), I would have it made in the shade. I’d get paid every week whether I worked or not, I could take the trolley all over LA (yes, LA had decent mass transit once upon a time and long, long ago when it didn’t matter because only 50 people lived here anyway), and I’d get to wear hats all the time.
   I love the idea that I would never feel bad about not having a tan (or being capable of getting a tan) and I’d get to wear exclusively high waisted clothes, covering both my gut and my butt crack at all times (and here I'd like to add a quick "screw you" to modern pants). I would have my hair marcelled, so I wouldn’t have to worry about finding new and inventive ways to style it all the time (my present lack of hairstyling skills has led me to rock a ponytail nearly every day for the last 4 years), and "exercise" would consist of massages and steam baths. Sounds good to me. And I don’t think anyone would care too much about the junk in my trunk, because it would be a lot more socially acceptable (and a lot easier to hide). 
My headshot from the 30's. Fake eyelashes and painted-on lips.
   As a star of the silver screen, I would frequently get to call people “wise guys” and kiss my costars really hard (notice how they kissed really hard in those movies?). If I were lucky enough to be in a film noir-type movie, I would talk really fast and keep an tiny, elegant lady pistol in my clutch and frequently break into tears and throw myself on a chaise longue.** I would be good at that, too, because I often break into tears and throw myself on my couch or bed in my current life, so it’s basically the same thing, but I’d be getting paid.
   I would probably have to marry every dude I dated, but that’d be okay, too, because most of the guys I would be dating would be other movie stars and very handsome and rich (though most likely a fair number of them would be closeted homosexuals, but I’m also okay with that). It would be fine if I wanted to drink and smoke all day long because everybody else would be doing it and I would want to fit in. And I’d probably be good at dancing in nightclubs like The Trocadero and The Mocambo because I’d be there every night with one of my (potentially gay) husbands. (I’m not good at the current dancing styles because they don’t seem to have any rules. If there were some rules, or if everyone danced like Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers, I’d be really into it. I’m just not very good at gyrating my crotchal*** area, and furthermore it makes me uncomfortable. And it looks somehow less elegant than the styles of the 40’s.)
   There would be drawbacks (aren’t there always?). I would probably have to sleep with Louis B. Mayer once or twice a year to keep my job and I would find ways to complain about the pictures the studio was casting me in and I would probably have to tell outrageous lies about my personal life. But I’d be okay with all of that because I’d probably win an Oscar because my acting would be so outlandishly over-the-top that everyone would think I was a crazy genius and I think they sort of handed them out to everyone back then. And I’d also have tried really hard to be BFFs with Bette Davis and she’d probably be always trying to kill me because my acting career was threatening to her.
   And then I’d die at 42 from lung cancer or drowning mysteriously in a hotel pool.
   But I’d be a legend.
   And that’s all for the moment because (sadly) I have to go back to living in the now (it's bed time). 
*The quote is from one of the best movies of the 30's: The Thin Man (W.S. "One Take Woody" Van Dyke, 1934).
**Just found out this year that the term for this furniture item was chaise longue and not chaise lounge. I mean, that makes sense. It means "long chair." But I always thought they were trying to say it was a chair you could really lounge on. But this is further proof that I am at least a tiny bit dyslexic. Maybe I can blame some of my problems on this?
***Crotchal = not a word, but used in this context to denote the crotch region of the human anatomy.

Monday, April 15, 2013

"I got invited to the prom. Tommy Ross asked me. They're just trying to trick me again. I know."*

   One day during my sophomore year of high school I missed morning advisory (homeroom). I don’t remember why I was absent and I’m pretty sure it wasn’t a cigarette-related emergency, since I’m almost positive I wasn’t yet smoking at that point. But I missed Miss Boulter’s 7:55 advisory period on the fourth floor of Duchesne Academy for one reason or another. We’ll say it was cramps, because that makes me sound like the victim (and you know how I like to be the victim).

   When I made it to advisory the following morning, the other ladies were way more excited than necessary to announce that I’d been nominated to compete in the upcoming Sports-and-Spirit activity the approaching Thursday: I had been nominated by my advisory to compete in a beauty pageant. Those sly, delightful bitches.

   I was beyond upset. I knew they nominated me because none of them wanted any part of it and I was gone so I lost the vote. I think I spent the next day-and-a-half complaining LOUDLY to anyone who would listen that I’d been sabotaged by the diabolical ladies from my homeroom.

   When no one gave a crap, I gave up, miserably resigning myself to an afternoon of shenanigans (the not fun kind).

   Our school spent a lot of time filling up hours: we were in class for most of them, but there were also chunks of each week set aside for filler: “activities,” and “assemblies” seemed to be always on the schedule regardless of their use or significance. I think our school had maybe somehow made a pact with a big-time financial investor sometime in the late 1800’s: the more time these girls are in school, the more money you’ll receive. Or something like that. It made no sense. Especially considering that kids from other private and/or Catholic high schools weren’t spending nearly as many hours in the building as we were. But oh well.

   The Sports and Spirit Beauty Pageant was one such activity: it made no sense and it was no fun and it was time we (theoretically) could have spent on the 6+ hours of homework we were assigned each night.

   The entire student body gathered in the gym for the faux “beauty pageant” and we were given a number of ridiculous ball gowns from the theatre scene shop to choose from. I didn’t care, and I was determined to lose on the first round. None of those dresses fit over the plaid uniform, anyway, and if other girls’ dresses fit: it just made me madder. (Oh, so now I’m in a beauty pageant AND I’m fat? FINE!)

   The Sports and Spirit Club made a big show of the grand prize: the winners would be paired with “mystery bachelors” and given movie tickets and a gift certificate for dinner. Maybe some of the ladies in the gym were legitimately excited: we hardly ever saw people who had penises, unless you were to count our male teachers, and just the sight of a dude was enough to cause an uproar: even if it was just a fat plumber. I personally hated the idea of a mystery date.

   I was petrified at the prospect.

   The first round of the competition involved a walk about the gym. Each advisory from each grade sent a representative: there were 16 of us. I wasn’t ousted in the first round, maybe because the rest of the student body was punishing me for my lack of enthusiasm. My face probably looked like there was glass in my foot and my shoe was slowly filling up with blood.

   I don’t remember the second round. It probably involved revealing some sort of hideous secret or some sort of awful physical event like Jello wrestling. But four more gals were ousted, and I remained.

   The third (and final round) involved a question from one of the judges. And this part I remember:

   “If you were a cartoon character, who would you be?”

   “Um,” I wanted out of this soooooo bad, “I guess I’d be Homer Simpson, ‘cuz he likes donuts and I do, too.”

   And I won. Ugh.

   I stood there for a minute wondering if the entire high school was trying to “Carrie” me: I may have even looked towards the ceiling to check for buckets of pig's blood.
You bitches better Carrie me, or else this has gotten really bad.

   But no. I had won and they weren’t even going to splash me with blood for my trouble. (At least if they were offering a major cinematic recreation I could get enthusiastic for minute or two.)


   I won a date with the mystery bachelor of the 10th grade class: P.D. Rudy.

   He was no great catch. Not because he's not a great guy. But I’d already known him for a decade. I’d gone to elementary school with P.D. and we were usually seated near each other throughout those 10 years because our last names both started with “R.” He wasn’t my enemy, but he certainly wasn’t my dream date. And he'd started out elementary as kind of a bully (a trait he later outgrew). But we were handed our gift certificates and we hugged awkwardly and agreed to talk about it later.

   In the ensuing days, my classmate and sort-of friend, Shannon started hinting about how she was really into P.D. and that they’d sort of started “talking.” I offered her my prize immediately: lord knows I didn’t want it. But she demurred.

   “Omigosh, no! I can’t take away your prize!”

   “Oh yes, I assure you, you can. Why do I want to go to dinner and a movie with P.D.? If you guys like each other, you should just go for it,” I replied. I was already seeing my way out of this incredibly awkward situation.

   “No, I don’t think I’d feel comfortable with that. I mean, we’re only talking, we’re not, like, going out or anything.”

   “Okay, so then what? You saying you want to come with on our date?” I was confused because I didn’t want to go on the “date.” And neither did P.D. We'd already discussed how we didn't want to go on our date.

   “Would that be weird?”
   Ouch. Now I had to go on the date for her sake, but she wasn't about to explain that to P.D., so I had to...without giving away the fact that she "liked" him. Yark.

   “I guess it would be better than us going by ourselves," I said on the phone to Shannon after my phone conversation with P.D.

   And that’s how Shannon, P.D. and I ended up at a dollar theatre screening of Kiss The Girls in 1998. I actually really enjoyed the film, despite the general filthiness of the Westwood Dollar Cinema and the fact that P.D. and Shannon were trying to figure out if they were ready for hand-holding during the last hour of the film (which featured multiple stabbings and at least one attempted rape). In retrospect I'm surprised they didn't make me sit between them and hold both of their hands until they were ready to switch to just the two of them somewhere over my lap.

   After the movie we started towards P.D.’s car in the parking lot (I was 15 throughout my sophomore year of high school, so I had to be driven everywhere). I remember trying to get to the car very fast. The two of them were trailing behind me.

   P.D. said something like, “What about the dinner gift certificate?”

   The gift certificate was for some sad, old Italian restaurant that used to be in Westwood Plaza but which I’m pretty sure no longer exists.

   “You guys can have it! Seriously! It’ll be fun. But maybe right now, you can just drop me off at home…?”

   Shannon was having no part of that. Despite the fact that she and P.D. were now at handholding status, she did not want me to leave this date. But I was desperate to leave this date. But I was 15 and so was she so I gave in, because I was a spineless twit.
Three wheels. One of whom wants to go home.

   “Okay,” I sighed. “Well, there’s a McDonald’s over there. What if we just get some drive thru?”

   Shannon insisted that I sit in the front seat (I’m actually still confused and annoyed about that to this day) and the three of us ate our nuggets and burgers and fries in the car in relative silence. I think I maybe inhaled a fish o-filet sandwich in about 30 seconds. I so wanted to go home. I’d never wanted to leave home in the first place.

   P.D. blasted Warren G. all the way back to my parents’ house, a move which further alienated me because I already felt profoundly out of touch with my generation's music. So I sat silently in the front seat while he and Shannon sang along to their super hip rap music and screamed conversation back and forth to each other between the front and back seats. 
   I did, eventually get home.

   Shannon and P.D. dated for a couple of weeks or months…I think. They did not marry each other, so my sacrifice was, ultimately, in vain. They are both, however, happily married now to other people, so…Yay?

   There is a lesson here in all this: When you are not a swimsuit model and you do not have a performance skill and you are not hoping for world peace: don’t perform in a beauty pageant. And I guess aside from that all I can say is, kids: make sure you show up for homeroom.
*The quote is from Carrie (Brian De Palma, 1976). It's dark, this quote. I don't really think my homeroom wanted to dump pig's blood on me.

Sunday, April 14, 2013

"It's funny. Everywhere Murder-She-Wrote went, someone died. I don't know why anyone invited her to parties."*

   If I were to be extremely honest about the career I think I should pursue, I would admit that I want to be a “Private Eye.” I think it would be super awesome to spend my days trailing people around town and taking pictures of cheaters and liars and possible murderers with a long-distance zoom lens. I would occasionally get into scrapes with people wanting to know what the hell I was doing parked in front of their houses all night and sometimes I would be offered bribes to sell telling pictures of people caught in incriminating situations. Occasionally I would have to hide in bushes or nearly be caught in someone’s apartment, but I’d always get out of it just in the nick of time. I picture myself having a career a lot like Jessica Fletcher’s or Veronica Mars’: I’d just be hanging out at a party and someone would die and someone else would ask me to figure out who did it and then I’d solve the case and get some money or just write a best-seller about my experiences. And then, if this were real life, I’d probably be shot.

   And eventually everyone would come to see it as suspicious that I’m always at events where people die.

   I think I have all the skills necessary for spy work: I have an above-average interest in what everyone else is doing. I have a very suspicious mind. I often solve mysteries on TV shows and in movies before they tell you the answer. I think eavesdropping is delightful fun. I’m good at hiding. I’ve watched pretty much every episode of Veronica Mars, Monk, Matlock, Get Smart, Law and Order: SVU, Magnum: PI, The Comish, Alias, and Murder, She Wrote. I’ve seen lots of spy, crime and cop movies including, but not limited to: Charade, Naked Gun, Beverly Hills Cop, The Pink Panther, multiple James Bond and Mission Impossible movies and To Catch a Thief. If this isn’t enough to make me legit, I’ll watch more. I’m okay with that.

   I’m not sure if spy school exists, but I’m totally into that as well, provided it’s not too pricey or time consuming. If it’s okay with spy industry, I’d just like to go ahead and get started. I did briefly own a detective agency in the summer of ’89, shortly after reading Harriet the Spy, so I’m already somewhat experienced. I just need some cases.

   I already did a little sleuthing the other day. You know that you’re cut out to be a spy when cases just fall in your lap. This is The Case of the Mormons Entering the Shady Apartment Complex in Glendale.

It took me awhile to get my camera out, so they were more or less inside by the time I got the photo. But I wasn't planning to spy like I'd normally have been if I were on a case.

   Okay, so I am aware that there are some difficult aspects to the spy game. I would imagine that sometimes, waiting in a parked car all night can be boring. I can also easily see myself falling asleep after the first hour. I know that there is often danger when criminals are involved but I’m willing to carry a weapon. I’m even willing to learn how to use a weapon (hopefully the same one I plan to be carrying). I understand that fast food is bad for the figure, so I will pack snacks to avoid temptation. I don’t think it will be difficult for me to assume aliases because I learned how to act in college and I’m also really good at lying. As you can see, I’ve put some thought into this.

   I've also considered that 1. I may not be clever enough to be a spy. I don’t think I’d know how to trick people into giving me information or how I’d be able to break into random rooms full of filing cabinets to hunt for clues (I'm not totally sure where those rooms even are). And 2. I think maybe in a way I’m more concerned with being a spy on TV. I think I’d really like my own spy show. That way I could be clever and sneaky without having to have any idea what I’m doing and I’d get paid way more than actual spies probably do. Is the spy game lucrative?

   Here, I drew up some promotional materials for my show with different working titles (which you’ll notice are just riff on the titles of other shows). 
Spy show ideas. Mostly stolen.
   The fact that I've spent so much time on this goes a long way toward explaining why I'm failing at life.

 *The quote is from Georgia Engel's character, Mamie, on Hot in Cleveland. I'm not proud, but I really like that show (maybe because two former MTM ladies are on it. Mystery solved!).

Monday, April 8, 2013

"I feel like the real me is just cooped up inside, you know? And I want so many things. I want designer clothes. I want to see the world. I want a penthouse in the sky and a maid to pick up after me. I want to say things like, 'Keep the change.' God, sometimes I get so bored I find myself just praying for a UFO sighting. I'd stand here and say, 'Come and get me! Come and get me!'"*

   I’ve mentioned before that I have issues with boredom. Because they are such real and pressing issues, I’ve got a whole new post about how bored I am. But even more, I have an existential-type question: is life really just a long string of moments that I have to find ways to fill in between bouts of sleeping? I ask this partly because I don’t sleep as well as I used to, so what used to take up a good 12 out of every 24 hours now only takes about 7. And I'm asking it also because I want to know. For real.

   I would like to attribute my near-constant boredom to the fact that my brain is just so enormous and full of intense, unique, brilliant thoughts that I can’t just settle down to a book or a movie without feeling like I’m somehow wasting time. But the reality seems to be closer to this: I’m really fucking lazy. When I’m watching TV, I could potentially be darning, say (if I were to learn how to do that) or drawing or…I don’t know, doing sit-ups. But all I normally do is a crossword or Sudoku. Or I eat copious amounts of popcorn and string cheese. But here’s the thing: I can’t just sit and watch TV. Even that is too boring. I have to move my hands around, even if it’s just moving them from the popcorn bowl to my mouth. I can’t sit still, but I can’t be productive because nothing productive sounds remotely entertaining and getting up would require the expenditure of energy or thought or drive: and I don’t seem to have any of those things.
A cow jumping over a spaceship in an attempt to get to the moon.

   But then, sometimes, I will have spontaneous bouts of needing to feel productive or at least busy and I have NOTHING to do. What do people do? I used to go out drinking a lot, and before that I went out drinking coffee a lot…but neither of those things sound very appealing to me now. But that’s also because I don’t really have money to spend for going out and having fun. And both coffee and drinks can be found in my apartment, so why deal with other people (Oh my god. I’m a hermit.)?

   No, but seriously, what do people do to stay busy? What is it? Tell me!

   That question was rhetorical because no one ever comments on my blog and answers my questions and because no one could possibly answer that question while I’m still writing. So, until someone answers me or I receive a sign from god or a link to a website with all the information I require, here are my ideas for future boring moments in my life (like the moment that will surely occur two minutes after I finish this post…a moment which I must seem to be dragging out by making this sentence last forever):

1.  Play hangman with myself: my rationale is that if I create the unknown phrase in advance and wait a week or two, I won’t remember what the answer is and the game will be fun. The downside is: I won’t know if I got the answer right.

2.  Plan the perfect murder. I do this anyway, but this time I will do it for real. And then execute it. Or sell it to someone with a vendetta. One of those two.

3.  Try to hold longer planks. At this point, I can only go for 30 seconds or so, but maybe I can stretch that to a longer time—yeah, this idea is already boring me.

4.  Learn magic tricks. Everyone loves magic tricks!

5.  Join an all-girl kazoo band. Just kidding. I hate girls. Just kidding. I stole that idea from Community. I don’t think there are any all-girl kazoo bands and I certainly don’t have the gumption and energy to start one myself.

6.  Do my homework. I’ve been in marketing class for 8 weeks now and I’m approximately 3 weeks behind on the reading. In my defense, the book is both very dull and disturbingly dated but I still want an A in the class. I can’t ever shut off the need to get A’s. It’s been ingrained since kindergarten. My C+ from my college scene shop class still haunts me.

7.  Buy the Rosetta Stone and attempt to learn Portuguese? Or…what’s the most useless language in the world? Erse? Esperanto? That’ll take up some time.

8.  Play tic-tac-toe with myself. Question: why do I always lose when I play tic-tac-toe with myself? You’d think I’d wrangle it so I won at least occasionally. But I play both sides to win. And…now that I’m thinking about it, once you understand how tic-tac-toe works and your opponent knows too, how can anyone ever win? Interesting. But not in a way that nullifies boredom.

9.  Learn ukulele. Even if I never learn to play anything, it’ll make me seem quirky and unique like those girls in movies that are always charmingly falling down or accidentally dying their hair blue or absentmindedly killing a cat and everyone thinks it’s super charming in the movie, but in real life a girl like that would be bumped off by a neighbor within a week.

10. Make lists: about where I would go if I had money, states I’ve been to, state capitals, types of trees, plays I’ve seen, people I know who have kids, colors I like. Sadly, I already do this one. Anything you’ve got, I have a list about it.

11. Pray for a spaceship to come and get me. 
Both me and myself played to win. We both lost.

   Sometimes I fear that my propensity for boredom will make it impossible for me to ever be a real grown-up. I know a lot of people who have things to do with their time, and very few adults who complain of being bored. I feel alienated by how much I sound like a ten-year-old when I whine about having nothing to do. So usually I talk instead about how stressed out I am, because that sounds more mature, and a lot more age-appropriate. But honestly, I am legitimately stressed out. By my boredom.

   Okay, I'll stop now. I’m off to play hangman, I guess. Sigh out loud. ‘Night ‘night.

*This quote is from one of my all-time favorites: Big Business (Jim Abrahams, 1988). I feel that both Lily Tomlin and Bette Midler should've won Academy Awards for this movie.

Thursday, April 4, 2013

"Women cannot complain about men anymore until they start getting better taste in them."*

   Once upon a time I dated a guy that was such a bad kisser that I told him I didn’t like to kiss. (Most people like to kiss, so my plan was somewhat flawed from the get-go.) But see, this guy would have his tongue all over my face and way back by my tonsils and into what could only have been my esophagus, and all over my teeth… and the whole time he thought he was really doing kissing the way it was meant to be done. He took pride in his “art.” Meanwhile, my lips were perpetually chapped and I always felt like I was two seconds away from seeing my lunch all over his face.

   It was truly awful and I dreaded making out with him to the extent that I would occasionally pretend to see a spider on the wall behind him or feign that I’d heard someone breaking in (men love the idea of fending off intruders) so he would go away and leave me alone. When he would leave, I would then pretend to be asleep or have my shit all packed up to go so the kissing could in no way continue. Weak, I know.

   He was a bit suspicious at first, but he was so full of himself that he eventually took me at my word.

   Thing was, I really wanted to break up with him but I couldn’t figure out how to do it. He was really controlling and while I’d always considered myself a savvy kind of person, I was at that point still so afraid of confrontation that I had no way of saying, “Look, I really don’t like you, would you please go away?”

   I did eventually break up with him and every time I think of him to this day, a tiny bit of vomit comes up into the back of my throat (perhaps a muscle memory from all the gag-inducing kissing he forced on me). Yes, he was very lame and gross and it’s my fault for having such bad judgment.

   It would’ve been fine if his only fault was bad kissing…at least then I could remember him fondly as “that guy who would’ve been great if he’d had any clue about making out.” But he was decidedly awful in a number of ways. In the interest of good taste, I’ll point out only one other flaw: he wore socks and sandals:

And he liked to stand in first position while he was lecturing me about my character flaws. Barf.

   Oh yeah, and he was painfully boring. Now I’m done. For real.
(Oh wait, let's talk about boring people for a minute. I've known a lot of lovely human beings over the years that made me want to jump off a cliff for no apparent reason and for whom I couldn't come up with a legitimate diagnosis. Chances are there's someone you think is "great" but to whom you can't really stand talking, right? This person looks normal and seems okay: they like "music" and "fun times" and yet every time you speak with him you think about how you could give yourself an embolism with a needle or break your ankle by falling on it "just so" to get out of talking to him. The reason is that this person is epically dull. Boring people are all around. And often times they are pretty and/or nice. But be leery of them. Keep your eyes peeled. They are almost worse than assholes because you can never feel justified in treating them like shit, because usually they are nice. Think about it.)

   I think I’m only bringing this up because I can’t get over how poor a judge I am of character. I’ve dated so many douche bags I should own stock in Summer’s Eve. But I think I’m finally getting to a point where I’d rather be alone than hanging out with a d-bag and fantasizing about my own suicide over omelets.

   I think that’s real growth.
*Bill Maher is responsible for the quote. I'm totally willing to date him, by the way. Does that automatically make him douche-y?