Wednesday, October 20, 2010

dancing with tears in my eyes

You know when your whole life feels like the worst hair day ever? Your hair - source of confidence and swagger - usually looks great (and it has to, because you have nothing else going for you in the looks department let's be real) but for some reason the universe decided to take a giant shit all over the one thing that provides a steady source of comfort and joy in your life (which is now full of misery and woe).  Your hair is flat, it's frizzy, you are essentially a caveman with a better vocabulary. and the worst part is that people try and tell you it looks fine. Fine. We all know what fine means. Fine means average, oftentimes below. Leonardo DiCaprio wouldn't even be able to convince me otherwise. and if he can't do it, no one can.

he is our generation's greatest cryer
It doesn't just stop at a bad hair day, though. You start to notice the little things like the close placement of your eyes on your face (when the fuck did that happen) and that tiny bump on the bridge of your nose that must have popped up overnight. Your hands are meatier than ever and your fucking eyebrows are uneven. Your outlook on your appearance, your accomplishments, on life itself, has shifted.  No longer rose colored glasses, instead you're wearing those light-sensitive prescription shades your grandma wore after she got that eye operation. You are now sensitive to happiness and joy. You are me when I was 16.

Also, Lady Gaga is practically the same age as you but she's about five billion times more successful and weird and interesting than you will ever be. Even Ke$ha found a way to make that party girl lifestyle work in her favor but you could never pull that off anyway because you're not tall, thin and blonde. Also because the smell of tequila brings back memories of that time you got a little too friendly with your bff's new roommate at that party 2 years ago. Then you remember that you totally ignored that guy even though there was nothing essentially wrong with him because you are constantly self sabotaging and never really think you deserve to get what you want (the Rolling Stones told us we can't always get it; but sometimes that's our own fucking fault, Mick Jagger). Then you projectile vomit everywhere. So since your fear of failure gets in the way of just about EVERYTHING, alll you can do is sit on the internet for hours and forget what real sunshine looks like because the only time you ever see it is in pictures on Tumblr taken by someone with a life and a job and true love and happiness. and then you wind up crying into your cat at night because he's the softest, warmest body in close proximity and you will die just like that.

your cat will grow to loathe and resent you
Yeah, I understand. I get it. Because you're me.

You need a change. I need a change. I crave a change. I crave change; I am broke. I am bored. but I can be vibrant!

Stop cynicism! Conan told you so. Believe in yourself!  Conjure up a sudden burst of motivation that's been seriously lacking lately, but was always bubbling right beneath the surface, just like in the movies! Take all your cues from fictional characters and situations! Life is yours to seize! Win it Twist it Pull it Bop It

But it's not like the movies (thanks Katy Perry), it's never that easy. but it's time to do something about it. Because comparing yourself to Lady Gaga or Janis Joplin or Bar Refaeli or that bitch you always hated who's actually doing pretty fucking well for herself (sometimes they don't peak in high school), is never going to accomplish anything.  Pretending to be hot shit has never worked in my favor due to crippling self doubt and lack of grace, so it's time to start full on believing it.

Or maybe just chug some vodka and fake it with some liquid confidence until you have truckloads of glitter and a record deal.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

fear factor

Motherfucking sidewalk grates. It's like they know when you haven't shaved above your knees because that's when they choose to blow your skirt straight up; they live on a diet of small valuables and Stiletto heels (why are you walking around in Stilettos? take a fucking cab), and beneath their cold, metal exterior lies only darkness. All signs point to sinister, so I find it safe to assume this pitch blackness probably leads straight to the bowels of Hell itself.

Satan gonna grab you
I hate those things.  By hate I mean I am terrified of them. To put this into perspective for you: I am also terrified of butterflies and moths. All three are seemingly harmless, nothing antagonistic about them (you would think that). Except my idea of Hell is being pelted with angry bees, stinger side up, all the while moths and butterflies emerge from cocoons and flutter around me in a raging swirl as I plummet down an endless, dark shaft, that Taylor Swift song on repeat in the background. Forever. The one where she sings about fairytales and boys. Oh right, that's all of them.

My fear of moths blossomed when I was on a family vacation in the Caribbean. One night, I was walking back to our hotel room with my brother, when a gigantic moth the size of my 11 year old hands (they were big; I was pudgy) exploded onto the scene, materializing out of thin air/evil.  Rather than remain calm (no one remains calm) and ignore the erratic, flying monstrosity blocking my way, I elbowed my brother in the side, leaving him behind (bait) to fend for himself against the gargantuan mutant created by Satan's underlings. I ran the rest of the way to our hotel room, passing what I remember were hundreds of moths adorning hotel walls - their eyes and antennae followed me (I had offended their master, their king, and I would pay) - and bolted myself shut inside.  My poor brother arrived moments later, but I refused to open the door until I was certain he posed no threat to me (bitten by a radioactive moth perhaps? Moth Man prophecies?? Reincarnation of MOTHRA???).

artistic rendering: looking into the face of evil
For the longest time, I was certain this was the moment that began my lifelong (so far) fear of moths. Recently, however, an event that took place days before emerged from my memory.  After a long day of swimming and eating (always eating), I waddled back to our hotel room with my family. Once inside, my father, lover of windows and balconies alike, pulled across the curtain covering the window/door that lead to the outside. To my absolute horror, hundreds of moths swarmed the balcony light my parents had (mistakenly) left on the entire day.

I now associate this fear with my father, because if he had never pushed back that goddamn curtain, I never would've held witness to hundreds of fluttering wings.  Even though this fear probably would have developed one way or another on that trip (considering I was fucking surrounded by them almost the entire time), I prefer to blame my father for it because isn't that what parents are for?

Because my mom was competent enough for the both of them, and stressed all of the normal parental advice (don't eat dirt; never talk to strangers etc), my dad took liberties in the truths he relayed to his children. He told me they kept the dead bodies inside the pews in Church so I wouldn't act up. He told me his secret ingredient in everything was saliva.  His interests include gardening, eating and sugar.

my dad is a lot like Homer Simpson
But my favorite bit of advice from my dad has to do with sidewalk grates (Hallelujah everything is cyclical).  We were walking over one of them at the time. He looked down at me, saw I was focused on all that I couldn't see beneath me and said, "If these things ever break and you start to fall, make sure you stick your arms all the way out.  You'll break your arms, but you won't break your neck because you won't fall all the way down. Hopefully."

Then he cackled a little, the way dads do when they stress out their children in psychologically damaging ways.

My logical mind - the tiny, whispered voice in my head - is usually smothered by hyperbole and exaggerated thought.  I sit still in Church. I walk around (not on, NEVER ON) sidewalk grates.  I cover my ears, close my eyes and take off at a running start when a moth flies near me. This is their world. I'm only living in it.

the future: December 21, 2012