Wednesday, December 14, 2011

To all the Michael J Fox’s:

I love you. I mean, I love you each individually, not as a collective group. I’ve only lumped you in a group because I realized a few short days ago that there is one common attribute relative to my feelings toward you: your euphoric charisma.

I’m a sucker for it, look at me. I’ve fallen for enough of you that not only can I put you in a group, but I can confidently title the group. To be fair, I could be addressing this confession to all the Jason Mraz’s out there, but biologically Michael J Fox came first. To me, he is the original. And the forerunner of charisma must be properly respected.

But now that I’ve got you all together and it’s all out in the open, I find I must confess the issue with my love. You see, I’m not the one for you. Any of you. As much as your charisma sways me, as much as I admire the look on your face when you’re reciting scripted lines, as much as I want to hug you every time you do a back flip or jump onto the kitchen counter, as much as my heart seeps red hot blood through my veins each time you say something singularly to me, I’m not right for you.

And I know you expect me to say “It’s not you, it’s me; I shouldn’t keep barking up the wrong tree,” but that would be a lie. It is you. You ARE the issue. You see, one of the contributing factors to your euphoric charisma is that each of you is a performer. And whether filtered by screen or delivered live directly to my face, you know I’m absorbing you—I’m taking it in like crazy. And you play to it. I’m not right for you because I’m a different performer than you. I don’t analyze my surroundings and react in an appropriate way. I pretend to. But really I invest in my surroundings and place the upmost confidence in my judgment, forgetting there are souls like you that will bend the surroundings.

You do realize you bring this upon yourself, of course. It’s the winking, the leaning in to whisper, the letting your arm linger at my side or holding my hand too long. It’s the singing my name and the secret eye contact and the fact that you just stick around.

As much as I claim to be mature and highly trained, my biology is not willing to shut down when you, the Michael J Fox’s, come around. Maybe if you weren’t so fit and beautiful my hormones could be still long enough for my mind to compute that the thing I love most about you is the very thing that would inevitably keep us apart: your euphoric charisma.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Memo from Corporate:

Greetings employees. As you may or may not know, writing is a genuine passion of mine, and something I look forward to having as a career -dare we say it- someday.

Most of you who have not slept through an English course will know that famous authors such as Mark Twain and Charles Dickens tried their hands at short stories. In fact, in the case of Mark Twain, began their writing career with these short stories.

You can, dear employees, imagine how I felt when I came across this writing contest for 17 Magazine. It is a short story contest. The coincidences here seemed too pronounced to ignore. I have since spent a month or so trying to find a topic on which to compose this [hopefully] soon-to-be-award-winning short story.

To the dismay of many, my subject smacked into me like a loopy pigeon yesterday as I walked to Institute. I constructed most of it in a text message draft as I crossed campus, and finished the rest that evening. The subject matter of this short story is quite unlike anything I've ever written. (Though if you read the previous post, you may be on the right track.)

I beseech you to take the time and assist me to greatness. The steps are easy, as follows:

1. Go to www.figment.com (Sorry if it's not hyperlinked. I still have absolutely no idea how that's done. But as an employee from Corperate, I am not about to openly admit this flaw. Read step 1 again omitting the parenthetical note.)

2. Create a Figment account. (It is very easy, and if you already have a Figment account, please, go on to step 3.)

3. Find my Figment page: http://figment.com/users?utf8=%E2%9C%93&search%5Bname_contains%5D=erica+farnes&x=0&y=0
(If this again fails to be hyperlinked, simply click "people" in the search bar in the upper right hand corner and type my name. I'm the only person who comes up. But it's my full name... So for those who aren't my facebook friends, search under Writings for "What I can't have". I also am the only result for that.)

4. Read my short story "What I Can't Have."

4 1/2. Attempt not to judge me for the subject matter.

5. Click the box that says "heart." (As You can see below I have attached a nice screen shot of what you will be looking at, the important part for step 5 being circled in purple.)



6. Tell all of your friends that won't be offended by my subject matter to follow the steps you just completed.

I hope you noticed, dear employees, that my short story takes approximately 2 minutes to read. That plus the time for the other steps is less than eight minutes, I would wager.

Thank you for your dedication and assistance. And if your assistance is not dedicated, do not fret. You have until January 30th. Congratulate yourself on this good deed. And get back to work or we'll start cutting hours again.

Sincerely,

Erica from Corporate

*to any Figment people that might read this and think I'm breaking the "entrants may not pay people...in exchange for votes" rule: I am not really the boss of these blog followers. I just thought it would be right funny if, instead of pathetically begging them to help me, I made it seem like I was a brute-headed Corperate employee sending another brute-headed Corperate memo.

See how witty I am? You can heart my short story, if you want. The steps are in the memo above.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

It takes no time to fall in love, but...

I'll never forget the moment he started meaning something to me: the moment we met. The moment I realized his cute, matured face was the most perfect of its kind. The moment he spoke, the moment he smiled, the confidence with which he held himself. The way I wasn't bothered that he wasn't miraculously toned. His tight pants. His charisma. His eyes.

I could feel how easily we could be something -or more than something. I knew if he would realize it and act, that nothing would keep us from breaking the bonds of solitude and becoming one together. I loved him, coffee cup aside. If ever a girl had such an immediate, over-whelming, all encompassing crush, it surely was secondary to the emotion brewing in me. Surely none loved more than I him.

I will never forget the comfort he instilled with mere eye contact; I'll never forget how his presence infused confidence in myself and allowed me to be true to who I am.

I'll never forget that he loved Jason Mraz, or the way he smiled when I told a room full of harsh eyes that Mraz is my favorite. I'll never forget that he studied at the same performance school as Mraz did for a year. I'll never forget that finally, someone so perfect had such a connection to my heart.

I'll never forget the way the word blazed as I scrolled down his page. Interested in:

Men.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

20 Years of Snow

If this was paper the window glass would be rippled, and a waded pile of my mistakes would court the floor.

My ink flask would be nearly empty enough that my quill wouldn't reach, and the candle wick would wait patiently to be lit, as night is drawing fast.

I would push my wood chair back across the wood floor and would walk to the stone hearth.

The fire is dying, I kneel to kindle it, realizing now I'm distanced from the futility of writing that my fingers are stiff and still as boards. I flex them near the fire, shifting my rear to the floor, and forget all but warmth and soft smoke.

If I slept for twenty years would I remember any sorrow? Would the pile of mistakes still lump around?

I look in the corner, where the faded sun still lights on the desk, one final, timid paper peering back.

Would they matter, these crumpled notes of one line or less, would they make all the difference in twenty years?

I suddenly am impressed that in this instant I'm alone enough to have slept for twenty years. I'm as solitary as Rip upon awaking in the woods.

Why did he leave the mountain? Why did he force himself to find existence, to learn his wife was dead, to be heralded by the town?

I come to my feet and pace to the stairway, the room mirroring the place I imagined the black orphan servant girl to labor.

I wish I could go to the elementary school and scan the books until I've come across every novel I ever read in my years imprisoned there. I wish I could find the covers I've never forgotten and refresh the crafted titles.

This isn't paper,the glass isn't rippled,and my mistakes are erased as easily as the wind.

But I still court the lack of ability to write a narrative, a poem, a sentence or two, without sighing and backing it away.

I think I could write better in a solitary cabin, the sun dropping from my rippled window's sight. I'd have to learn better penmanship for the ink to prove well, but the fire would keep my eyes right.

I would write better if I'd slept for twenty years, alone and untethered and free. I'd have trees to walk through and snow to observe. I could live for twenty years with writing.

But I wake up each day in the same place, no mystery men with whom to bowl. I'll never be enchanted or abandoned enough to find solace in more than my mind. Literally, Rip van Winkle is pathetic proposition.

Mentally, I'm sleeping for twenty years now.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Paradox of Seven

I stopped believing. Journey would be so dissapointed. I know I'm not supposed to write off love -that's just a thing Taylor Swift does to make music. But I honestly can't...

I swung my feet up onto the window seat, still wearing my calf-height boots wet from the rain. On a normal day I'd kill myself for risking mud on the soft pink cotton of the window seat cushions; but today I didn't care. They say there're seven stages in crushing on a person: 1) twitter-pated, 2) anger toward person crush is "seeing", 3) anger toward crush, 4) crush never leaves your mind, 5) you claim you're moving on from crush, 6) the time spent between any past stages, and 7) actually moving on.

But what if you moved on not from the crush but from love in general?

My conscience forced me to remove my boots.

No doubt this is part of stage seven, feeling you could never love again. But I'm not certain: this feels deeper, more real. More... empty. It's not absence of reciprocated affection that plagues my mind to muddle out reasoning. It's absence of affection in general: I just don't feel it.

I curled my toes under in a pathetic attempt to keep them warm. Cold seeped past any warmth-providing article and embedded itself in my pores.

I wonder if he intended this,that day he made me stop believing. I wonder if he meant to give me that sexual look of love that belittled me as much as it pierced my heart. I wonder if he meant to make a mockery of seven months.

Seven months.

I pulled my knees to my chest, the cold sticking to every gland regardless of my huddling.

Seven months to love and lose. Seven months to live and learn. Seven months to abolish all faith in the male sex for the rest of a lifetime.

The rain outside is lightening, becoming more confident in returning as vapor to the atmosphere of the clouds.

Or maybe I just need seven more months to fall back into love. Or seven days.

Or seven years.

Or maybe I broke a mirror sometime back, and I must repeat the "crush" cycle of seven a total of seven times before my curse is demolished.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

As Much As I Love You, I Can't Control You

As much as I love you, I can't control you.
You'd think I'd be able to by now, but I can't;
Being an actress should at least give me a leg-up.
I don't even know you.
I can't define parts of you when they ask;
I'm ignorant. I play the part. I'm a manipulator.
I put you how I see fit, but I don't understand.
And then you deceive me and cut hearts and confidences,
And I stand in the blood you scourged,
The havoc you reaped, and I blame you for all the wrong.

What right have I? You merely do what you were meant for.
You merely follow your predestined path.
I'm to blame for trying to make you what you're not.
I'm to blame for pulling you out of context.
I'm to blame for never learning of you in the first place.

Anne Frank took pride that she could work with the likes of you.
I applied that to myself.
But I have to gift in this regard.
I have no strength in this purpose.
It's but an easy talent of mistake,
That I regard as talent of success, that puts us where we are.

As much as I love you, I cannot control you.
I am a cannon of rhetoric, fuse constantly ablaze.
I can't blame you for hurting him, and him hurting me.
In the hands of one more skilled all would have been well.
But I am despicable and horrendously flawed.
I swear off this vain word work here and now,
Until the time I learn what you really are,
And how to show love through your parts.

Friday, October 7, 2011

All About the Wordplay

I'll never forget my first conscious experience with a pun.

As a little girl I was babysat by my grandmother every day; this meant I played in the front living room with all her strange toys while the television created noise in the background, and was occasionally checked on and fed.

In those days, and as several stations still insist upon doing, television channels showed re-runs. But they'd pick the same eight episodes to show almost constantly, very rarely airing the others. Needless to say, when it came to the shows I was more partial to, I became rather familiar with these consistent re-runs.

There was one episode of The Powerpuff Girls in which the Mayor was somehow booted from office. He sat on a street curb, perhaps outside of the Town Hall, and he said something that I couldn't ever quite grasp. And much as I would with a Jason Mraz song lyric today, I'd spend the course of the day mulling over that statement. (I think I'd heard his "statement" as a playground song at some point prior in my life; you can ask me to sing it now and I happily will. It never left my immediate memory.) I'd sing the song as I thought about him saying it, but my uneducated mind couldn't grasp the double speak.

At some point the episode was re-aired yet again, and it suddenly all made sense.

The Mayor sat in his rag-tag form on the street corner or whatever it may be, and said glumly, "The old white Mayor just ain't what he used to be."

And then a random white horse stamped its foot merrily in place as it stood in the middle of the road, and Blossom flew down in front of it and began some sort of pep-talk.

I'm not a horse person. No one within arms length of me is a horse person. I didn't know a horse was called a mare, or that such a word would almost be pronounced mayor. It never hit me until that moment that the Mayor was referring to himself on the forefront, but the double speak about the horse and the cameo appearance by said horse were the real joke in the situation. The horse had miffed me as much as the Mayor had, but I'd always taken his phrase as a means to figuring the whole thing out.

And I was right.

And I was so ridiculously proud of myself for getting it. And I firmly believed I was the only little girl in the country to have deciphered that rascally Mayor's riddle.

And maybe I was. Or maybe I wasn't.

I mean, I'd seen the episode enough. Perhaps I was the only little girl in the country that took such a large number of re-runs to find the relevance of the horse.

Whatever the case may be, be my little brain a genius or moron, I've never forgotten that image of the bedraggled Mayor, and I've never forgotten his bewildering sentence.

And this pun has always been my guilty pleasure to drop into conversation whenever it seems relevant. How could I let a cognitive victory like that go to waste?

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Change Again

*warning: the following keeps with my over-all general writing style, but I tamper with some less-reputable vocabulary words*

Well, you did it. You got me to believe you. You were so paced and irregular and spontaneous that I had to acknowledge this wasn't some scheme. You were battling with intrigue all the while I was.

And you did it right. You waited, when I thought you'd left, you arranged to meet me at the bus, you smiled....

You gave me your number.

You did it. You got me to believe you. And then you changed. I wasn't expecting you to be smitten immediately. I wasn't expecting you to get on one knee and say "I haven't bought the ring yet, but will you marry me?" I wasn't even expecting a kiss. But I expected a chance.

I was an idiot to think there weren't more like him; I was a moron to assume you'd be different and act as though you cared when you literally cared. I was a brainless imp when I took you for truth. I suffered from flashbacks all evening. I was rushed with the emotions I had back then; I kept my motions under check with the notion that you could -and would- be watching at any moment. I looked when I could for your eyes. Every hat'd head turned into you.

But they never were.

I'd told myself as I left home that this night wasn't about you. I told myself it was for me, and when you happened along all the better.

Well, you happened along and you happened right on by.

Don't expect to get what he got. Don't expect my heart to lay pathetically on the floor, feebly pumping streams of blood into puddles that spell your name. Don't expect me to look at you with the hope that whatever ailed you has passed and you remember you love me.

Don't expect to be waited for.

I've been used before, and months of peril taught me to avoid that road at all costs, should it ever appear again. Damn you for playing nice, for putting on affection and interest. Damn you for channeling him and doing all in your power to be a deuce bag. Loyalty is something wanted for a serious relationship, I thought, not a requirement in all lowly hearts you step on. You did it. You got me to believe you, and you got me to relive in part every horror he inflicted on my heart. You got me to open those wounds. You pushed me back from the thin line of trust on which I stood for men birthed in the last thirty years. You put me back to where he left me: with little faith and hope in soul mates and true love. With the assertion that all men are selfish a**holes, all men will use me for their egos and complacent pleasure. All men will ignore me. No matter how much my heart bleeds for them.

And in spite of all the wrong you did, in spite of all the trust you lost yourself, and all the pleasant, peaceful, patience I posses; in spite of the deceit and hard-eyed shunning, you did one thing he never did.

Apologize.

Granted, you've lost the prestige you held before, but to acknowledge a wrong and care to right it must put me somewhere in your emotional radar. I'm not removing the smudge, because I did that for him for much less chivalrous things and it did me none the good. I'll withdraw a bit, enough to seem as indifferent as you clearly portrayed yourself this evening. But even if you aren't the one, or aren't anything but another name to remember in years to come, you built yourself a new shelf in my heart, casting darkness on the cobwebs that cover his, and as the days go on I'll give you full opportunity to stock your shelf with what you will.

And we'll see if you're like him, or the hybrid with the nads to man up.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Like I Like You

I wrote myself a letter and rolled it in a ring. I left it in the grocery bag of play jewelry under my bed, dating it for when I figured it would be relevant to find.

I found it three years premature. But it was long enough ago that I'd forgotten. I wrote myself a second letter and rolled it in a ring. I placed it by the other and pushed the bag back under the bed.

I don't remember what I said, but I don't forget it's there.

Today I think I might write myself a third, read the second, roll the third in a ring... I haven't decided.

But you're the reason I want to write it.

A letter to myself about how perhaps we, someday... isn't what I want to express right now. Maybe as the colors change I'll have the notion again to pen to myself. But today I want to write to you.

I'm listening to the album I bought last year. I thought of you when I first heard it. I told myself not to match these acoustic songs of love to you--I've been the fool that way before and wrecked many a good song with later bitter memories. But I couldn't help myself. There was something about the strong sense of autumn her voice brings, and the drives through autumn I took to a place where you'd be. I learned from my past mistakes not to assume you felt all I did. I learned from past mistakes that I perhaps wasn't really even feeling all I claimed. I ignored I loved you.

I still ignore it.

Well, ignore that I could say "love." I ignore that I let myself slip there. I don't think I love you.

But I know I could.

I remember it all now. I felt like I stood on the curb, and you kept driving past. You wouldn't ignore me, but you wouldn't stay. I almost didn't want you to stay. I didn't want to wreck the view I had from the curb. If you stopped and I let word slip, who's to say you'd ever drive past again?

I didn't care how short of glimpses I had. I just knew I wanted the chance to see at some point, however far-apart those chances were.

And then near the end you started slowing down. I was so used to you speeding past I'd almost stopped paying attention; then with absense of my knowledge you were near stopping. But you had to keep driving--you have to keep driving. It's who you are. That's something about you I'd say I loved, if love was a word I felt safe using with you. I don't want to label what can't be--what won't ever be. But I won't let go of the option, because you give me sufficient reason to believe that love might be applicable before long.

The way you'd shift gears and crawl past my spot on the curb, the way you'd look as you passed... I felt you saw something. And at first my tender pride assumed you'd taken the route of the other and slowed the car to taunt me. I feared you slowed to fuel you're ego.

But you had something the other didn't. An inconsistent sincerity. Not inconsistent like I was being ignored, just that some days we'd pass, but the mental drive you were on wasn't passing my curb.

I almost thank you for not driving past me each time we met. My heart would have broken itself when it ended in nothing.



I know you know. I could tell when you'd meet my eyes that you knew. And for a time you, like the other, regarded what my eyes betrayed with laughter. But it was that day I lost sight of the amusement behind that I hoped for you. It was that day when it seemed like some window in you opened, and like me you became victim of the inability to hide the thoughts of the heart. I don't expect you're "hung up on me." Part of me doesn't expect you to ever be. But I know there's a part of you that knows not only what I feel, but what you feel. I've seen that part. There were moments when you were driving past, and he saw more than just seeing me. And in those moments I could see what it was that part of you saw. He's pressed through numerous times, unknown to your more dominate portion.

I think part of you is ignorant to it.

Or refuses to believe it, because let's face it.

I'm not your type.

But it's the glimpses of that part of you that keeps me on the curb, craving the moments you'll drive past. And it's that part of you that slows the car when you pass; it's that part of you that looks. It's that part of you that sees me. It's that part of you that loves me, and that part of you that I trust saying I love to.

I hope you wake up when you're gone. Part of me knows you will, but I haven't decided if this is the wise portion that knows you're highly capable of loving me, or the portion that hopes on things that can never exist. Regardless, I'll be sure to keep my spot on the curb, just in case. I'll be here when you come back,I'll be here when you drive past again.

And if you don't know then, then I guess I read you wrong, or I guess you lost that part of you, or I guess we weren't meant to be more than we are.

But I won't give up before then. How can I? I think of you as often as you drive past. And whenever I hear this acoustic autumn voice I'll have to picture what we started to have. I'll have to remember what you started to release before it ended.

I want to be with you. Or at least have the chance to try.

If you're coming around, it won't take long.

Until then, I'll wait on the curb for the day you drive past and throw the car in reverse and come back, and all I can see is the part of you that loves me.

"And in this so-called small world,/ we all have a story that wants to be told./
Will you be in my story?/ Will you be?/
...Will you be my somebody?/ Will you be?"
-Katelyn Jolley: Will You Be

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

That time I was late for college.

To anyone and everyone who knew me in high school, it is common knowledge that I am late for everything. Honestly. In fact, I feel more stressed and anxious when I'm NOT leaving five minutes before I'm expected somewhere. Or at the precise time I'm expected somewhere. Or ten minutes after I'm expected. But to those who paid attention to the hands of the clocks, it is obvious that my tardiness never exceeded the fifteen minute mark. Blatant disrespect of time follows the fifteen minute mark. So I spent my high school years being cordial in my lateness.

But to those who know me in college, or at least to they with whom I share the Monday/Wednesday/Friday block, I am a responsible adult who cares so much for punctuality to class that she doesn't even allow the thought of a bathroom break to possibly take her mind from being punctual, let alone acting on such a thought. But really its because I take public transit now, and for some reason my brain believes if I leave late but transport myself, somehow I won't be late. But if I leave late and a public bus drives me, I won't get there for four days.

And this punctual thing was working out quite well, at least until That time I was late for college. (Aka Tuesday. Aka the second day ever.)

I'd planned it well: I'd get on the 8:22 which would get me to campus some five minutes before class. "And if I'm late, its the first day. It'll be just like yesterday when it was generally understood by all its a new school year and some people don't know where their classes are or how to get there in a timely manner. If I'm late I'll just take the earlier bus."

Little did I know.

So I waited in morbid grief as the bus kept not coming to get me. I began calling my mother and fondling my bus pass and, to some degree hyper-venhalating. The bus came. I got on, took a nice seat, read some humorous scene in Urinetown the Musical, and got to campus at the time I planned. I hurried to Elizabeth Hall and climbed two flights of stairs. I entered my classroom, surprised it was so full.

Everyone was looking at me.

My brain brought back the image of the time I'd received from my phone moments before.

9:27

The teacher directed me to a seat. I took it, confused as to how the class was already so far in swing with it not even being the start time yet. "You're really late." Said the teacher mild-manneredly.

"The buses were crazy." I said, taking my seat in the far left corner, partcially obscured by his towering corner desk. He made a pleasant response back about the unreliability of buses.

I thought the topic over.

He continued to teach and the film of embarrassed ignorance coating me melted into insecurity and confusion. Was this the right class? I'd made sure of the room number before entering.

And the remainer of the film melted.

What time did this class start??

I couldn't bring myself to cause another distraction by digging in my bag for my well hidden schedule. I resolved to ask him in my serious, kind, bewildered manner after class.

But as luck would have it this man was more Professor Snape than Mr. Feeney.

During the course of my thought process he had begun talking about ediquette for the audience when someone is giving a speech (the course is Public Speaking, I see I failed to state this). "If you come in late," at this point I received a look, "then you do not come in. You wait at the door until..." I continued to listen, keeping my face from showing my mortification and embarrassment. Did I mention this class in particular had a 2-1 guy-girl ratio, and all but two of said guys were brutally attractive?

And then, from the cognitive gates of nowhere, Professor Snape turned to me and said "Half an hour late? Really?!"

And as the only Griffendor in the room, I stood alone in a sea of scornful Slytherins as he continued, "Is this too be expected?"

Half an hour late? Half an hour late? My fears had been confirmed, but in my defense, at this point Snape was half an hour late in his humiliation tactics. I explained I thought the class was at nine thirty. And then I made the mistake of declaring "that's what my schedule said."

"Oh did it?" He scoffed aside to Malfoy who must have been sitting in the opposite corner, because who else would Snape share a joke with, let alone a joke at a Griffendor's expense?

I had meant honestly to say I'd read the schedule wrong, or something more true and not as excuse-y. But I was buckling under the preasure of being the only person in the room not on the right side of the line. I tried to hide my discomfort and humiliation, and in doing so Snape read not my sincere contrition, but flagrant disrespect and unabashed indifference. Even when the phone of the girl directly in front of his lecture podium went off, the cruelty had to return to me. Even after the five minute, freeing rant about learning to turn technology off, the snarl had to come back to me.

I was going to apologize after class. I was going to explain myself with remorse. But he couldn't be adult about it. So I wasn't about to try to be adult about and risk turning into a blubbering, teary mess. No. I left the classroom, and metaphorically left behind any desire to have him respect me as a person, because thus far he's not making it easy to be done in reverse. No, I am writing a speech about theatre, Snape. I am not researching stem-cells just to impress you with my weighty and controversial topic. I am not going to sit anywhere else in your class, and you can remember every day how you alienated me, and how when I signed up for your class I felt you were going to be my favorite teacher. But I'm not going to cross into the baptismal waters to becoming Slytherin. You can be my favorite teacher when an immortal snake bites you into a bloodly mass and you let me keep your memories about your good intentions.

For now you're alive and I'm ill-expressed and as it stands I am not naming my son after you.

But I need this class to be an Auror. So I'll see you tomorrow Snape.

And I'll be on time.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Don't Dream, It's Over

I never thought that could be the problem.

I have too many dreams.

I'm not talking the "I'm going to be a vet when I grow up" dreams. I'm talking the "how this should have gone", "what I was actually supposed to say", "what might have been" kind of dreams.

That's weird, isn't it? That imagining different outcomes to a specific situation is an act of "dreaming."

Leah Nash, of Sixpence None the Richer, sings "don't dream, its over." I listened to that song on the bus this morning, and after admiring Leah's voice as per usual, I began to mull the title statement of the song over. The cheery, blissfully sweet tone Leah gives the phrase, followed by words of "they come...to build a wall between us", has lead me to accept the meaning of the title line to be "Don't worry. No matter what happens I love you. You love me. And we're together." Or, "The battle's been fought and we have won. They can keep trying to tear us apart, but we've already won. They can't affect us."

Don't dream, its over.

But suddenly "dream" wasn't a metaphor for dwelling in the uncertainty of a romantic relationship under siege. Hours later, without thinking on the song more than acknowledging which tune was stuck in my head, all prior interpretation of the phrase fell through, leaving me with the thought that "dreaming" is imagining how life would be going if I was sitting in the director's chair with unlimited resources.

There was a substitute teacher in my high school who could read your personality by looking at you and talking with you; and it could be indepth if given your signature. She sat across from me in my eleven-member English class and told the basics on everyone's personalities as she looked around the room.

"This one's a romantic." She said about me. "That's not a bad thing. You're a dreamer, and you set things up and when someone doesn't act right you..." She sighed, signaling sorrow.

I started dreaming before the interpretation change struck me. I started thinking about how it's too bad I didn't make that show, and he didn't end up playing my brother so we could end up falling in love for real. And that that guy should have asked me to dance. Or at least introduced himself. Or asked for my number.

I came to a halt in my stair ascension.

Don't dream, it's over.

There's nothing to be done. No amount of imagination can change the outcome of anything. Fantasizing only makes the truth harder to attain. There's nothing tangible in fantasy; it's merely a synonym for dream. I spend the dull patches of my days living life in the past, fixing my mistakes and missed cues of others.

Live today. Keep in the present. Be engaged in your surroundings as though performing on stage, as though someone were always watching. But don't try altering the script. Just follow as the directions come.

And don't dream, it's over.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Life Sized

Ten years ago I didn't think past age twelve. I played with Barbies, making a new movie everyday; of Barbie falling in love and having kids. Of Barbie working at McDonald's and falling in love and having kids. Of Barbie's daughter growing up to look like Barbie and falling in love and having kids.

Eight years ago I didn't think past being a "teen". I dreamed of lockers and new friends, and Barbie started co-staring in movies about her daughter going to school. And growing up and falling in love.

Six years ago I imagined high school. I imagined a red convertible and a more skinny brunette version of me. I imagined falling in love. I got caught up in adolescents, in a fantastic musician, and in learning that writing wasn't just a desire. The Barbies found themselves in a box, their house sold to a girl blocks away, and my room suddenly low on a third of its past shelving capabilities .

Four years ago I didn't think ahead. I put less effort into school than I'd ever in my life. I tried last minute to bring my grade up in an honors course, and nearly failed another. I was kicked out I'd the honors course anyway. I didn't imagine high school, I was making movies in my head, saying they'd be books soon; movies after.

Two years ago I denied I was aging. I denied the end was coming. I let these delusions keep my mind at ease, making movies and daydreams while school lessons slipped aside. I saw myself as I once had Barbie, and couldn't comprehend why I hadn't fallen in love; or at least why he didn't love me.

Four months ago I realized making movies and future ideals with Barbie had not given me the means to accomplish them. Four months ago I realized it wasn't enough to want to go to college; college costs money. Four months ago I was forced to accept I don't have money. No benefactor would step in and escourt me to my potential out of state. No miracle would come and pay my way in state away from home. Four months ago I realized I wasn't playing with Barbies, and I didn't have the power to make things come to pass as smoothly or promsingly as they had in toy form.

One week ago I realized it's over. One week ago being a citizen of the USA became more than saying a pledge each morning. The things I'd ignore my parents say about money, the things Barbie and the movies never had to comprehend, became real. Last night I realized life isn't like Barbies. I can't change the story every day. I can't morph the outcome to pacify me.

Four days from now I enter adulthood. Four days from now I'm out of excuses, and Barbie has to cease being a way of life, and become--for good-- a memory.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

The Craftsmen Dionysus

Actors have it hard. At least in the world I grew up in.

Acting isn't a talent. I mean, you get on stage at a talent show and sing and -if you're good- the crowd applauds and says "Oh, the talent!". You get on stage and play the flute or trombone or ukulele or what have you, and -if you're good- the crowd applauds and comments on your fine-tuned skill. You get on stage and recite a monologue -even if it's not Shakespearean- and the audience golf claps and looks at each other with raised eyebrows mouthing "Did that kid just read to me without reading? I thought I got enough pointless lectures in college."

Acting is as much of a talent as kindness. Over half the population wouldn't applaud or acknowledge such a trait as unique, acclaimable skill. The majority of them might not even acknowledge its existence.

For this reason I've been forced to ignore talent shows nearly my whole life, because -even under a well developed character and blocked monologue- the average joe looks upon any recitation at any age as they would a fifth grader rambling Shel Silverstein in monotone. Ironic, is it not, that a talent that only exists to be displayed is often misunderstood or ill-accepted when exposed?

I think film actors hold their fame not because of skill, but because they've been on screen, perhaps even multiple times. Not to say they're all talentless nubs, no. But I don't think Americans leave the theatre thinking "Well gee. Did you see his facial expression when the old man fell off the bridge. I mean... It was so raw. Like he was actually feeling it."

No.

I'm sorry.

People keep seeing their movies because they keep appearing in movies. They like them because they're familiar faces, talent or no talent doesn't seem to matter.

Nicholas Cage. Case and point.

I'm not intending to be rude. I feel comfortable jabbing the knife and twisting it into the pompous hearts of the unappreciators because I've been there. It wasn't until recently that I found myself suddenly detached from a movie for a moment to admire the way the emotion was splayed on the face. In fact, during a particular episode of Family Ties (as viewed on Netfilx) I had to re-watch a snippet of a scene at least eight times to thoroughly soak in Michael J. Fox's face upon realizing he was in love. It was incredible, the change...like an awakening...

But I digress.

People expect the actor to entertain, not to bring the emotion of life to a tangible level. As a self-proclaimed actor I have suffered un-intended ridicule at the hands of my lesser informed peers. At work one day I had to go ask the Bakery Boys in the back for their mop. As I left the girl I was working with told me "You're an actress Erica. You can do it."

To understand why I was fragmentarily offended, you have to understand what "you're an actress" means to me, an actress.

I in no way shape or form indulge or accept the idea of acting in everyday life. By this I mean what is commonly known as "being fake". IE, if I don't like a person -if there's just something about them that leaves and ill taste in my mouth- I don't run up to them when I see them and hug them and ask them animatedly about their cat. I know people like that -I doubt that you don't as well- and they thoroughly disgust me. I try to be straightforward without being brutally honest. If I don't like a person I don't treat them like my best friend to their face, but I also don't openly say "I don't like you. Bluntly, I hate you." I simply avoid them. And if they scamper up to me I tolerate them until they're gone, all the while not being overly kind, but not being mean.

Putting on a show of kindness for someone you detest, that to me is acting. That to me is the amateur, false, any-body-can-do-it method that for some reason has survived the test of time. I do not practice this method, and when people expect me to pull falseness out of a hat (such as the Bakery Boy scenario -to "act" in real life) I can't help but be offended that they label my 'profession' among that of the mudslingers.

This post wasn't going to be a high-horsed account on what is acting or not. I actually sat down pondering the idea of writing a monologue play about the misconceptions of a stage performer -mainly the actor. No offense to my more musically inclined friend, but I feel the art of acting is second banana to a good singing voice in this po-dunk state.

I think that's why I want to live out of state. And it's most certainly why I want to own my own theatre. I want to give the actor a chance. I want to give the actor the hope that their talent can be expressed in places more relevant than facades on the street. I want to make a name, not for myself, but for the actors who have fallen to mal-information and labels.

I want to give the Michael J. Foxes a chance, in order to slowly rid the world of Nicholas Cages.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

The Awkward Complex

I've been very pessimistic today.

Which is something I don't particularly enjoy, especially when it isn't the sort of pessimism where I sit in my room and grumble to myself while wishing I didn't have so many nick-knacks on my shelves. Today I was at work from six in the morning until two in the afternoon grumbling to my coworkers.

And it was embarrassing.

I'm not particularly pessimistic. Granted, there are the semi-occasional pessimistic thoughts that penetrate my otherwise happy-go-lucky firewalls, but I don't often vocalize them. And if I do they are monitored and vented at my parents who generally seem to understand me.

But I have this complex which I have just decided to refer to as the "Awkward Complex." When forced so socialize with a group of people I've just met or barely know, I inwardly panic. This panic shuts off the blood flow to my brain and blocks any cognitive abilities I have hitherto possessed. Thus the Awkward Complex begins. Being physically unable to form a mildly intelligent sentence, but still feeling the overwhelming urge to be myself (which, unsurprisingly, includes some form of speaking), I begin to talk about whatever awkward subject I can; to break the ice. But the Awkward Complex makes me overly aware of how awkward I am feeling, and to avoid appearing awkward it seems reasonable to talk about how I'm feeling awkward, thus eliminating any notion that I'm actually feeling awkward.

As I said, all cognitive abilities shut down once the Awkward Complex is in full swing.

Unfortunately, as I stumble through kindergarten grammared sentences about how I'm feeling so out of place, I tend to attempt to lighten the situation by talking about whoever I am with. But what few appropriate sentences my mind can create get lost in all the shut tubes and blocked barriers from my brain to my voice box, and I say something that, at any other time, would have most likely been a witty and charming statement, but under the Awkward Complex emerges from my lips a biting remark about how my companion is a horrible person. My companion is most commonly Erin. I, victim to the Awkward Complex, have unintentionally called her a whore, a low-selfworthed moron, and a dirtbag, the latter of which translates into a donkey's rear-end in my cleanly vocabulary.

And duly unfortunately for both myself and my not-so-horrible-as-I-happen-to-say-she-is companion, the Awkward Complex also abandons all use of the Restraint Gland. This gland is the particle of the mind that informs you when it is proper to continue to speak, and when it's best to just shut your mouth. With the Restraint Gland out of the picture, the Awkward Complex brings me to rambling non-stop, attempting to recover from my mistaken friend-bashing, but only digging me in a more awkwardly inarticulate hole. And in the depths of this hole I remember how awkward I'm feeling and begin to speak about that again.

And as soon as my companion adds to the "conversation", I once again dim-mindedly retaliate with a statement that makes us both look like foolish, rude vagrants.

This outburst makes me feel beastly awkward, And upon feeling awkward I begin again to draw attention to my awkwardness.

It's a rather vicious cycle, that is usually only broken by whomever I was speaking to breaking the conversation and scurrying away, and is shortly followed by Erin getting upset that I made her out as a dirtbag, and by me apologizing profusely about how my mouth only gets away from me when my brain shuts off, but my apologizing is just as jumbled and awkwardly rude as any other previous statements.

And then comes the Guilt.

But today I wasn't speaking about my awkwardness. I was complaining, and much like the symptoms of the Awkward Complex, it seemed best to stop seeming like I was complaining by continuing to complain.

But there's a difference between complaining or sounding brutally idiotic to someone you just met against complaining to two middle aged women you respect and have worked with for two years and who know you are normally quiet and well-mannered.

People express grief upon failing their parents expectations and losing their trust over something like lying about where they've ventured to. I'm pretty much feeling that now, but it's not so much disappointment at making someone disappointed in me as it is knowledge that I let my half-framed opinions leak in quick and violent succession from my lips and that these women have every right and ability to share my phrases in the gossip circle that is the Bakery.

It feels good to complain on rare and lighthearted occasions, just a statement or two max. But to become victim to the Awkward Complex's close cousin the Complaining Complex, and allow your ill-hearted and vastly untrue complaints to spill out of your pores for hours on end in an attempt to make conversation and not seem like a pessimistic complainer is among the top ten Foot in Mouth moments of your life.

Unfortunately, if counting each Awkward Complex moment individually rather than as a whole, I have some fifteen top ten Foot in Mouth moments.

And today makes sixteen.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

The Fortunately Found Forgotten Fragrance

I have this shower gel that smells like my great-grandmother's house. It's innocent enough in the bottle, pleasant even, but once I begin lathering trouble brews. It's that near putrid aroma I've associated with my great-grandmother since childhood: a mangled cross between a freshly opened box of Wheat Thins crackers and a fermented peach, moldy and oozing, squelched to its shelf by its fluid. But the peach thing might just be because my great-grandparents owned farmland and an orchard that may or may not have grown peaches.

That smell was her house. Though now that I think of it, the AstroTurf of her "mud room" and the general musk that must have been grandpa mingled in with the cracker/peach fetor, creating a scent that was singular to that two story hope house in Ogden.

Which is why I know it so vividly. That house, for me, was not the gardening wonderland my uncles and aunts reminisce on. All I knew and all I remember was the faux turf grass carpeting in the mud room and sun porch, the rotten fruit smoldering in the orchard and cellar, the sun-bleached yard gnomes and critters, and the well that had been sealed and used as a home for potted plants. I knew stripped wood sheds the size of the house stretching back farther than I was allowed to go. And the pine-needled floor that lead to the horses who I only remember because grandma said if I clenched the apple like that instead of just resting it on my open palm the horse would get my fingers for sure.

Thank you grandma, for that three year fear of horses.

But I digress.

I only smelt the stench when entering the house through the back door that lead to the AstroTurf mud room and hidden door to the dank cellar, and when passing through the kitchen that got more and more cluttered with each passing year, and when visiting grandpa and his TV broadcasted subtitled basketball game in the living room with the fuzzy faded green couches. And in the pink tiled bathroom with the large window overlooking the backyard that, for my later years, seemed always to be broken, supplying what I sarcastically knew to be heaps of privacy.

I'd wiff it seldom other times, and when it crept up I'd recognize it immediately, but I never knew what it was that created the scent. I was always miffed, when walking past that house on the corner on my way to elementary school, and one out every three hundred times I'd smell it. I'd always taken it to be a secretive mix only feasible through my great-grandmother's elderly clutter and aging fruits. But there was the smell, like a disembodied voice, uncalled for and confusing, unwanted and unknown.

In spite of the displeasure I seem to express whilst describing this odor, it does bring a certain waft of nostalgia (pun unintended), as exemplified in my near two paragraphs of blithering nonsense.

But while the memories are bright and blissful, the scent itself is dank and disconcerting. So you see my trouble with a body wash that has mastered the scent of that house. But still I continue to use it, aside from each nagging fear that it does not grow agreeable as it soaks in the skin, but rather stays the same, and as my luck should have it I'll have chosen to wash with it instead of some other soap and that day be approached by a prospective mate who, upon smelling my aged rotten grandmother-house stench, politely steps away never to come a'calling again.

It's odd to hold that bottle in my hand, seconds before dumping some of its contents on my loofah, and know all along the scent has had a name: a reasonable name, one I would never have pegged for such an off smell. It makes me wonder if the contents of my great-grandmother's house really had anything to do with the smell that resided there. Perhaps it's in the little-old-lady handbook to obtain a bag of dried plant bits infused with this scent and sprinkle pinches of it in every nook and cranny, behind every dusty trinket and unplayed piano. Perhaps it was just her favorite flower, and she was so stuck on it she abolished all use of any other and only employed scent of iris in her home.

Or perhaps my body wash is just as fermented as that peach, as fermented as that dear old woman, and it's not the flower at all, but the funk of age in general.

What We Love is What We Become

To the man who changed my life:

I never liked artificial light. Perhaps it was that my walls were grey, and domed florescents made them prison-like. Or perhaps it's due to my days spent outside, and the youth and imagination that accompanies sunlight. Whichever the case may be, I've spent my life with blinds pulled up and sun coming in.

But there was something missing in the light of nature. There was a chink in my happiness;and without knowing you filled all the gaps, and then those that weren't ever gaps to begin with. I had music now to explain my heart. I had words and a voice that fit all I was, and all I would be. But more than that I had a jimmy for the lock that kept my windows shut. I had a flattened screwdriver to wedge in the wood and moment after moment pry open.

And then the words in song became words on screen and I learned by reading the soul behind the voice, the person behind the guitar. And more than that I learned writing as a mortal against writing when linked to the heart of the universe; writing plugged in and charged to the rhythm of the organism earth. I learned all I'd ever prized myself on was the simplicities of man,and that beauty did not come from labored knowledge. Beauty comes from open windows and tentacles of the soul strung out and tethered to the nerves of life itself. I learned in your words that I am part of a cyber network quite unlike the one that fed me your phrases. I became able to channel the network of hearts and write their emotions, all because I felt it enough in you.

And this is too long to say, and perhaps too disjointed. I wish you could read it all. I wish I could tell you. But you'll never hear of me, you'll never see my face, you'll never read my comment on your parting swan song. But I hope you'll feel my heart, and find yourself opening the windows to the network of love and humanity and hearts and feel all I have to offer.

Because I'm only able to offer it due to you.

I regret having fallen from following you, but you should know what I've read has taken me the way it all did in the past. Whatever you write next, and wherever you write it, will be well enough for me. As long as your writing still comes; as long as, through you, I am able to recall that I am now a connected heart.

To the man who changed my life: a solemn thank-you will suffice, in the words of mere man. A connection of hearts is too much to conscript.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Your Eyes Say It

It's in the eyes, they say. She'd seen the movie many times of the last unicorn turned human. The pale-white girl with the pure white hair traveled to the sea-side castle where her unicorn comrades had been chased into the sea. The man responsible knew not she was a mythical beast, until he looked in her eyes and saw images of her forest home, instead of his own reflection.

Years later the girl tried to learn to read eyes, to know their depth, to know their meaning. But every time the eyes said "love" with a soft palated head inclination and a glisten or two she was wrong.

Over and over again wrong.

"We actors can put on those things." The cavalier on screen cooed as he leaned in to kiss the bewildered girl. She chose him in the end. He left her, having made her believe love long enough to obtain what he needed to leave.

She watched the movie play on in silence, having believed in the love affair. His words spun about, and she remembered all the times she'd read eyes wrong. Each pair misinterpreted, each pair actor's eyes.

"We actors can put on those things."

Don't trust an actor.

-She penned, her eyes desert dry. Then she scratched it.

Don't trust actor's eyes.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Look at Us Now

I smile at the room, watching everyone clashing.
Reunions are my favorite.

The artist's in the corner, forgetting she never
Knew how to paint. Or draw. Or create with lines.
Her frustration is evident, but still she tries,
Wondering why everyone has to ignore the norm
And create something that looks like art.
The creep's standing still with her back against
The wall, appearing to enjoy the crowds,
But wary that any may turn apocalyptic cannibal
At a moment's notice. She tries not to think of
Pet Cemetery or axe murder.
The comedian stands on an imaginary stage,
Spewing jokes like a well-humored spit-take.
Her smile shows she knows her affect, but all
The same, their reactions of pleasure come as a
Surprise. She continues to speak, somehow keeping
From killing the joke and shooting it thrice more.
Just in case.
The romantic grips her arms, soothing her heart
So rough and tender from being so long on her sleeves.
She thinks about the time that boy walked away from
Her, or the time she accidentally terminated all
Chances with another. Or the man in the deli
And the way he smiles. If her mascara wasn't
Waterproof it'd run.
And the girl in the chair is sitting because
One mentioned the time they skid their knees on
The pavement. She strokes her left collarbone
With her right hand, thinking of trees and God
And anything besides the faculty of blood.
The actress finds the comedian, talking
Boisterously about her traits on stage,
And how the black of the house floors her.
There was one admiring the artist's failures
A moment ago. She's in the other room with herself.
The cake decorator can't stop talking about
The day she learned to make roses,
And that if she could just bake she'd have quite
A sure business on her hands.
The believer keeps her life on the Lord, enjoying
Her company and conversations, but knowing there's
Somewhere higher to get to.
A girl leans her head on the piano, knowing
She knew how to play once, regretting yet again
That the sounds in her head don't transfer to
The keys; that her songs are left to be sung in
Showers and cars and the back of her mind.
The photographer's taking pictures, going on
Memory card nine, and beneath the window pens
The author, the rush of inspiration wafting
Her in an out-of-body experience, fueling her
Word use and imagery. And outside someone's
Hugging a tree.

I smile and lean back in the couch.
They don't bother talking to me. All
Save the performers are caught in themselves,
And here I sit observing them, observing me,
And wondering why we behave like we do.
I'd analyze all their reasons, if their reasons
Weren't the same, and if the act of sharing a
Physical cavity hadn't given me clue enough.

The Quilt

I imagine life as a patchwork quilt.
The stitches aren't very meticulous,
I'm not that good of a seamstress.
I imagine each patch is a different
Color per year.
This year's patch: teal and pink plaid;
Last year's green, the year before ivory,
And so on and so on until my quilt is big enough
To cover all my instances and experiences,
Until my quilt covers me.

I imagined prayer as a letter sent on
Plastic seagulls from the Lion House.
I imagined angels ripping envelopes
And telling God here's another. For you.
What if he kept my letters? Saved them in a box,
Maybe slipping them straightly into
Plastic safe-guard sheets.
I imagine each letter a patch,
A quilt of prayers,
And that when I stand before Him
He'll hand it down with heavenly hands
And let me hold all I ever told Him.
God's a perfect seamster: His stitches
Sweet and minuscule.

I imagine I'll hold both quilts
As I leave judgement seat,
My life a wheelbarrow of patchwork,
My prayers a continent.
I'll take both to my heavenly mansion,
And use my life to snuggle through the nights.
My prayers will hang pinned from the walls,
Too long and sentimental to risk drooling on.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

These Things Will Change

(here's another ditty I've been altering)

No one uses telephone booths these days. Every man and his dog has blue tooth in his ear and cyber-space in his pocket. I walk the streets, airing out my summer shorts from their winter-closet mothball encasement, and watch the telephone booths forget communication; but they remember something else.

I'm not schooled in superheroes and comic books, but if memory serves I believe it was one such as Superman who used a phone booth for a rushed changing station, entering as Clark Kent, emerging as a flying mascot for whom America is now too small.

In spite of the phone booths' lack of placed calls, it seems to me they're still quite popular. The accountant enters, successful in his business, surfacing as a tattered, shadowed drunk. A young woman walks in, her smile and eyes bright, returning with scabbed wrists and tear-stains.

I've stopped on the bench across the street from a phone booth, watching the costumes change. Clark Kent, I believe, was an honest, just man, but was only unrelentlessly so in a spandex suit. The phone booths around town allow people who choose to strip off the facades of their lives and take their true, raw form.

Imperfection, unfortunately. That's what the booths reveal; as if all with facades have weighty faults. They know it; they hide it. Adults emerge as children with lollipops and propeller hats, or bruised knuckles and stiff jaws. Young doll-faced angels reappear with tense, sunken eyes. Good becomes bad. Bad becomes worse.

Was Clark Kent perfect? I wonder, crossing my legs. He left the booth a fearless man. He left the booth with victory.

All I see leaving are mistakes.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

After Tonight

To sleep, perchance to dream: ay, there's the rub; for in that sleep of death what dreams may come.

Hamlet said it like it was a plague: to sleep, perchance to dream. Granted, to take your life only to find you'd never rise again, but that your mind would forever swell in images and hauntings of all you knew and all you imagine you knew, would be quite the plague. Yet sill I find myself incapable of saying the curse without a smile of pleasant possibilities.

To sleep, perchance to dream.

And dream of you, figment of my subconscious, and the form you'll take tonight. Approach me on a dance floor and steal a kiss before you fly. Come calling with bread each morning. Leave a pressure on my cheek I still feel when I rise. Sit with me on a green couch, talking. Parade arm-in-arm with me through a grocery store, let me sing By The Sea on a dock. Steal me away as the sun touches the night. Let me call you mine.

But in that sleep of death what dreams do come! And I wake so refined and amazed. And love holds my hand in my heart, on my sleeve, but this love is myself. It's only me. Oh now, wretched bliss, take back all you gave. I'll have no more these feign fantasies. This world is too imperfect compaired.

Sweet peace, release.

To die, to sleep; to forever be free.

To sleep, perchance to dream.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

My Music Library

I've been wanting to do this for a while. Kate asked me one day if all my blog posts were titled by songs. I told her yes, the vast majority of them are song titles or lyrics. I then tried to tell her what song each was from, but she stopped listening. A few days ago I realized that here, on the blog, you can't run away from me. And, well, if you do it's not as obvious as it would be if I were talking to you face to face. But to make this fun, I'm not just going to rant off the name of the song and artist who sings it. I'ma attempt to link you videos of the songs. So grab some popcorn, slink down in your seat, and get ready for who knows how many videos.

Let's start from the beginning.

January 21, 2010 I Liked You Better
Song: I Liked You Better Before
Artist: Little Jackie
Video: (Didn't have a music video, so it's just audio. Sorry.)


January 22, 2010 There Once Was Love
Song: There Once Was Love
Artist: Ingrid Michaelson
Video: (The song actually starts about a minute into it.)


January 26, 2010 ...Or Am I Standing Still?
Song: Standing Still
Artist: Jewel
Video: No, this isn't the official music video (embedding on that was "removed by request"), but this is actually the very video I watched as I wrote this post. Funny I remember.


January 28, 2010 Not Love Blind Obsession
(The title of this post isn't a song. I posted song lyrics at the end of the post.)
Song: Dominoes
Artist: Dawn Mitschele
Video: First time I saw this video was on Jason Mraz's blog. Now you're seeing it for the first time on mine. Fun fact: She's a pal of Mraz's. He gave her one of his guitars. (Also, because it may take you a minute to notice, every woman in the video is Dawn.)


February 1, 2010 Gunning Down Romance
Song: Gunning Down Romance
Artist: Savage Garden
Video: Wow. If you only make it a minute through this, I'll give you kudos. I didn't know he was such an interpretive boy-band dancing fan. Not gonna lie though, it kinda takes the poetry out of it. And diminishes from his attractive-ness.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Drink from the half of a broken bottle

Well, today I was BS'ing an assignment for English in which I had to grade the moral conduct of each noteworthy character in Dostoevsky's Crime and Punishment and explain why. Marmeladov is an alcoholic. When Raskolnikov first meets Marmeladov, it is in a tavern where Marmeladov has been blowing money on beer for five days, afraid to go home to his proud wife with the news that he abandoned the respectful job he'd procured just days before. He expresses to Raskolnikov his desire to help his family, and provide for his wife in a way that suits her pride, as apposed to her current squalor, and to help his daughter Sonya from having to sell herself in the streets for the financial benefit of the family.

I gave Marmeladov a D-, stating that his conduct was not justifiable or incapable or pity. He had such a desire and yearn to better his family's conditions, yet he quit his job days after receiving it and spent the intervening time and money drowning his poverty in alcohol. His situation was one where the sin could be prevented. Yet, intentions aside, he found himself incapable of putting off drink long enough to benefit his loved ones.

Inexcusable conduct. Wretched excuse. D-

As I handed my assignment to Mrs. Drake, she looked at me and said, "How are you doing this when you haven't read the book? Cheating?"

She was addressing someone else at the same time, so I let that person answer, walking away to get the sheet I was supposed to hand in with the assignment.

"Really, though." She said upon my return. "Was it Spark Notes?"

I didn't answer.

Because it was Spark Notes, but, I fumed in yoga the following period, it wasn't because I was a delinquent and didn't want to read the book, and went to Spark Notes instead. I wanted to read the book--I still do. I have a feeling it might be that dark literature I've been searching years for. I just didn't have time, with the play and math homework and YouTube and reading just takes me so long if I wish to comprehend it...

And I realized, there on my yoga mat, that I was Marmeladov. I want to be better. I want to stop making Ashley hate me and treat me like an incapable little kid because I'm late to school everyday. I want to be dedicated to my school work and actually finish most of it at the proper time. I want to clean my room and the bathroom sink. I want to get my Young Women medallion. I want, I wish, I yearn, I desire, yet I keep waisting my time and money on drink. I keep turning back to the alcohol of procrastination, even when I know the day is laid out perfectly for me to get the allotted task completed. I acknowledge I have a chance, I even go out and get a nice uniform for work, but I find myself trading the clothes for something more... fitting, and I enter the tavern like the drunk I am, and drink until there's nothing more to drink.

And I'm afraid to go home to my wife, my God. I'm afraid to return and say "I took all I had, all you'd helped me receive, and I drank it. I spent each spare moment you gave me, and I drank it. I wish I hadn't. I wish I wasn't so wretched. I wanted to be better, but I kept drinking, Lord. I kept drinking."

Inexcusable conduct. Wretched excuse. D-

I hope the Lord gives me more of a chance than Mrs. Drake will. Because even after today, after this eye-opening, disturbing comparison, you'll find me tomorrow, bottle in hand.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Nothing More Than Good Orderly Direction

I don't think poets think. And I know that sounds like a lame excuse spat from a pessimistic high school English student, but ask around and you'll find that I'm really not pessimistic, and I'm really not studying poetry currently, so there is no reason for an excuse to be flung.

After "I'm Yours" blew up, Jason Mraz's blogs tended to keep a steady theme: "Don't praise me for the music." I remember vividly (although sadly the man is such an avid blogger that I can't recall the post) him saying, in effect, "You don't want to meet me. I'm not the one writing these songs." After a dedicated search I have located one such post: ( http://freshnessfactorfivethousand.blogspot.com/2008/05/theyre-yours.html ) "The songs don’t belong to me. They are bigger than I’ll ever be and they will certainly live a lot longer than I will...Even the personal songs about my family and factual love stories, I will not take credit for writing them. It is my duty to simply sit and listen to a frequency that anyone can hear; A station perhaps from space, commercial free, broadcast in the clouds. I don’t ask. I sing-a-long to that station nonetheless, and happen to record the phrases and melodies from time to time, and still they are not my own. Maybe I am a receiver, but just an instrument in that sense. My body is just hardware. Some other wonderful force is playing the song."

Did you catch it? Even this simple paragraph... He said it beautifully. Poetically.

Thoughtlessly.

And perhaps I'm so bent on this being the case because this is how I write. I don't sit down and think "I'm going to write a poem now. I think it'll be about a bird, but thematically it will reference the freedom of the human soul when the body is confined. And to accomplish this I will use only similes and words that sound like their meaning. And I believe an a-b-a-b rhyme scheme will be rather appropriate. Now for the plunge!"

Thousands of authors have come before me, and thousands have yet to come. But do any really know what writing is? And those who have cracked the code--whether it be sitting in candle light thinking of the most thematically relevant vocabulary words, or merely painstakingly adjusting your dials until the cosmics start transmitting to you--refuse to reveal the secret. My initial thought toward novel writing is that one should be written in a day or two. Because a day or two is about as long as it takes to read any normal book. My regard toward poetry is that it should take little over five minutes to create a poem: because it takes little under five minutes to read one.

But it would be idiotic, would it not, to assume that a stage show was created on the spot, the actors in costume, synchronized in dance, memorized and moving with no rehearsal or prior thought? Yet with movies I find myself wondering when the actors memorized their lines. And how. They don't have a stage to practice on for weeks. It's filmed in a studio or on location. Filming would be their first time running it properly. So it must be their first time running it ever. How do they know?

No one's been there to say "Here's a method for writing. Here's how poems come into being." So as far as I'm concerned they come with little thought. They are not created intentionally by the author, they come from a feeling pushing the mahogany shutters of the soul open and allowing the blessed rain of thought to drift in on the wind. Authors aren't rocket scientists. Poets aren't mathematicians. Writing isn't thinking. It's a realm of emotion backed with a knowledge of words that lets a composition thrive.

And for a time I thought perhaps it was just me, in spite of Mraz's insistence he experiences it too. Perhaps he and I are of the few who take the easier path of receiving inspiration rather than truly owning the talent, presence of mind, and strength to produce anything of worth. But then I found this, and I don't know, but knowing Michael Jackson's stand on the matter made it all the more believable that a power larger than man creates through man.

"I hate to take credit for the songs I've written. I feel that somewhere, someplace, it's been done, and I'm just a courier bringing it into the world. I really believe that." -Michael Jackson

"Whatever “being” is to the human. Whatever air is to the bird, or what water is to the fish. Whatever force decides to make our hearts beat and food digest. That mad divine scientist is who is responsible for these songs. They are a gift for all of us." -Jason Mraz

Poets don't think. Poets allow themselves to be used. And that "mad divine scientist" keeps finding new, willing, open vessels. And oh, how it is to be one.

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Ants Marching

In order to further procrastinate writing an essay I should have turned in Wednesday, I decided to post this musing a penned Tuesday:

I've forgotten a lot of things. It's been so long since I've seen a worm or a rolly poley that I have half a mind to assume they're extinct. The second this pops into my mind I shake my head and wonder why I've forgotten the existence of rolly poleys and worms--things that were stable and constant encounters in my youth--and I realize that that's just it. I've forgotten worms because I've forgotten to remember them. I've forgotten to walk up the street at eight in the morning after a night of rainfall, watching the moist ground at my feet. I've forgotten to dig in the dirt with my hands or a plastic green trowel. I've forgotten worms because I've forgotten to find them. And the same goes for rolly poleys and praymantises and daddy long-legs: I momentarily believe they've forever left this world because I've forever let them leave my sight.

They still share my grass, still share my sun; just because I no longer share their plain of vision does not mean they are beneath me. They do not share my quest for lasting love, or my concern over gas money. But they share my innocence. And some days I remember I've lost that very thing, innocence.

And I've lost it by losing the bugs.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Sixteen Shows and Counting

I've spent the past nine years of my life in the safety net or organized performing. Being in acting classes since the fourth grade and then Bountiful High's musical program from junior year on makes you used to performing regularly.

I've done at least sixteen shows. I've averaged a show a year since age eleven. As I got older one turned to two, and now...

I've been cut off.

Granted, half my repertoire I paid to participate in, such is the nature with acting classes, but it was still a regular schedule of performing.

Sophomore year my acting class had a different teacher who was focusing on a Christmas variety show instead of an actual musical, and I didn't feel like myself walking the school halls. I felt so... elementary. And perhaps the reason was that without the safety net of a yearly performance I reverted back to me as I was before the yearly performance began. It's as if I am my best self when I'm focusing one million percent on being my best someone else.

But here I am, Charley's Aunt's set in heaps and piles, my costumes out waiting to again be boxed away, and I realize that life as I know it is about to change. Any show I participate in from this moment to the end of my life is left up to my own stamina and the director's intuition regarding my talent.

Sounds like another addition to my "Golden Now Year of Change", eh? My father told me it'll be the same as it's ever been when I said that Charley's Aunt was my last guaranteed show ever. "The others weren't guaranteed, were they?" he'd asked.

He does have point. I stopped paying to be in shows the end of my sophomore year. But I argue that I only got in musical because Angela had me in her theatre class sophomore year, and somehow whiffed my potential. And I only got a part in both musicals this year because I actually tried...

Oh.

If there's anything I've learned, reviewing over my odd theatre past, it's that trying and fighting at and for auditions is what gets me places. I put everything I had into All Shook Up performances so Angela could see I'm an expressive person on stage. I did everything I could to have Mother figured out before Crazy for You auditions, and refused to tell myself that part was in the bag, because every other time I've "pre-cast" the show for myself I end up with the exact opposite: ie nothing. And Stepmother? Well, I let her come out as flamboyant as she wanted during auditions. And I guessed it worked.

So by the time Charley's Aunt came around Angela knew I was capable, and only needed my formal audition as an excuse to give me the part. (I'm not saying this to be cocky. If you would like all of the back story to this audition just ask me. It's quite an ego-boosting allegory.) I think the thing that troubles me most is that situations like the one just ascribed will not happen again. I have to learn to convey in three minutes what I showed Angela in two years. Otherwise, my list of shows stops at sixteen.

And it's quite a stressful thought.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Take a Look

[Here's a little ditty I penned in Creative Writing today:]

I was so... idiotic. I mean, the simplest thing in the world and my heart beamed and nudged my clavicle with its elbow and said, "Hey. Did you catch that? Did you see him?"

But what of it? I don't happen to make eye-contact with people, meaning for them to see the underlying message that I wish this distance of our friendship were merged closer by the closeness of our hearts. I look to be looking; I let my eyes rove. And if they stop on someone, all it is is that they've stopped; nothing more.

But because it was him and it was me he'd stopped at...

I slumped my face to my hand. Idiot. Honestly.

The hopeful notion of my own immature mind does not mean what he intended--completely unconsciously--as a roving eye observing his fellows was truthfully meant to mean "I haven't really admitted this aloud to anyone, but I look at you and can't stand that you're not with me."

I let my head drift to the desk. Idiot. Honestly.

How many times? How many times will I go through life believing mere glances are promises and vows of forever? How many times? How many times will I fall for my self-deception and find myself not only without a seemingly loving glance, but without a simple expression of friendship as well?

How long will it take me to figure out my emotion is reflected in his eyes only because eyes, superficially, are mediocre mirrors of life: the reflection distorted and untrue.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

An Ocean and a Rock

I told myself the last time, after I'd wrung the salt water from my hair, that I'd never run into the ocean again unless there was reason to. I told myself, as the sand began to cling to my wet feet, that I'd never submerge myself in the torrent of waves unless everything around me was ebbing that direction. I told myself I'd sit on my purple beach towel and wait.

Either I forgot my vow or the tide is coming in, for my feet are getting wet again and my flesh can taste the salt and my heart is flying over nothing and now I'm running through the current like there's a destination among the waves; but I'm mistaken. For once I actually acknowledge the fact I'm delusional, but my heart finds me absurd. My mind can't help but wander, taking my stride with it; I can't help but see it all falling into place perfectly and miraculously, I can see in my mind how it'll work out.

But I've done that before, seen things like that, and thought I'd thought right so I ran headlong into the water, ready for the bliss of swimming and love.

But I was mistaken. And here I am again, the same beach same sand same water. It's the same scenario, opened for the umpteenth time, and I'm going to take the same course of action. I'm going to let myself be let down the same way, by running prematurely into the ocean, feeling the cool twang of salt water, waiting for the inevitable to fail to arrive. And when it does I'll stand and return to the shore, wringing out my salt-drenched hair, vowing in all times to come to remain on the beach.

But in vowing so, I'm mistaken.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Victorian Etiquette

The hardest thing about acting is deciding what to do with my arms. I know. It's ridiculous and absurd but it's 100% true; the only thing I dread about performing is finding a comfortable-yet appropriate-position for my arms.

This is going to sound weird, but this blog is about my musings, and I am rather musing on this topic, so here goes: I'm very aware of my arms. They are, in some bizarre way, the center of my being. I feel emotionally through my arms. When I'm touched by the word of God, it's my upper arms, not my "bosom" that burns. When I'm nervous, it's my arms that jitter, likewise with embarrassment, excitement, love; any emotion that usually clenches the chest is experienced through my upper arms. I quite literally wear my heart on my sleeve.

Because of this I am constantly aware of my arms' position as I go about my day. As a Junior High student, I was self-conscious of the way they hung at my sides (honestly though, what Junior High student is mostly concerned with the position of their arms as they walk through the adolescent halls?), so I stuffed my hands in my pockets. Until ninth grade when I realized, upon looking in a mirror, that my hands in my pockets didn't make me as picturesque as I'd thought. So I had to fix it. High school was even more tiresome because I now no longer had a binder to cling to as I walked the halls; I had a bag, and my hands where then free. I began to, and still do to this day, cling to the strap of my bag with my right hand and let the other dangle by my side.

Without a bag on my shoulder I am at a complete loss.

So imagine, someone so paranoid about the position of her arms in her daily life on stage striving to portray a character in a forgotten time period without playing the cliches and being redundant.

Exactly.

Junior High I was awkward and worried about my arms, but as we rehearsed with costumes, I'd find myself quite comfortable putting my hands on my natural waist (Which I've come to connect the act with the way my skirt or pants are fitted to my body. If they're snug and enhance my curve, my hands want to rest there, furthering the curve. Sadly, this is not always applicable to the character. And, because I did it all through Junior High, it is thereby overused and not to be recycled for approximately four more years.). Crazy For You I really didn't bother over my arms, because I was on stage so little that it didn't even matter to me myself what they did (though I avoided placing them on my waist like the plague.) Cinderella I kept my hands bent up, to ensure maximum ability to gesture. It fit with the Stepmother's character, and it was something I hadn't done to that extreme before.

But along came Donna Lucia. And, as always, after rehearsing so much with my script in hand, my arms want to keep that position though now they are book-free (Which, ironically is exactly the spot I'd place my arms by default for Stepmother. Wonder where the inspiration came from.). But that isn't Donna Lucia's character. She wouldn't bend her arms like that for so long.

And she wouldn't place her hands on her hips.

Needless to say I have spent the past forty minutes scanning Google images of Victorian women to see how they hold their arms. I've found a pretty decent middle ground between Stepmother and awkwardly holding my arms to my side. Let's just hope it pulls through, shall we?

And while we're on the topic, remember Charley's Aunt opens this Thursday till next Tuesday. Tell all your friends to come. I don't want the audience to consist of empty seats and my parents.

Want to know why this one helped me? See the lady on the far left with the red parasol? See how she's holding it? Genius.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Using my 'write' brain. Lame.

I'm not a fan of the urge to write when there's nothing to write. And I just had the epiphany to share with you all my most gnarly poem ever (A sonnet. Who would have thought, right?) but then I remembered I was a good student and turned that in to my ingles teacher and I'm at the school so I don't have it saved on my hard drive.

Hmm. Predicament, eh?

I don't know why I'm being so prudent and spunky (is that a contradiction? Sometimes I just write the words that pop in my head, and I'm too lazy to correct myself right now so...) I guess it's just been a long time since I've written as Erica the teenager instead of Erica the attempting-to-be-sophisticated-author-who-harnesses-the-feelings-of-the-world-in-general-and-somehow-relates-to-all-mankind. Now, naturally you can see why I'm opting to be regular Erica, because other Erica takes much much too much time to introduce.

But I don't have anything to say to you. And I have this urge to write.

I keep waiting for the big exposition to come crashing through my fibers, but it's not. So I suppose the lesson is is when you're waiting for rehearsal to start and your whole soul is interwoven into your character, the urge you feel to write is not your urge at all. And it isn't even an urge to write. It's Donna Lucia d'Alvadorez wanting you to open the parasol and kiss a boy.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

messing up the play

Pen.

I looked at it, my inside breaking. Pen. Permanent, staining, forever-concealing pen.

Pen.

The pen to paper was like pen to the walls of my heart. Simple blue strokes of scribbled things along the pristine that was my inside.

"Buck up." I think, "It's nothing personal. It's bugging you so much because you're OCD about things like that. In a month you'll set the "defiled" thing under the bed and forget about it until-"

Until! That's the point. A time will come when it will be found. A time will come when the forgotten will turn to remembered and through the merry memory all I'll know is pen.

Pen.

I scrubbed at my heart, rubbing the flesh raw. This pen, why does it bother me so? And it seems as if this mere happenstance is not the first thrashing of pen to my heart. I've been penning myself long, and the bright, proper, brilliant white walls of my soul are dampened and dim with blue pen.

Pen.

Agh! I've found it, however long it's been scribbled; a month, a week, ten hours... perhaps it was scribbled long long ago and I placed it under the bed to be forgotten, and now, somehow, I've reached under the bed and found pen.

Pen.

Spring had better come, for I'm feeling claustrophobic and depressed again; and as it appears I won't be moving out for college, I have only the seasons to provide my change of scenery.

Only the seasons to hide the pen.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Return to Pooh Corner

(I'll admit I struggled with titles for this one. It was the above or Childlike Wildlife. I think I should have gone with the latter.)

Oh, how it is to wake up.
The Barbie house still exists in my mind:
I kept my Furby on the deck, the white fenced deck,
Hoping it would wake up in the middle of the night
Like Andy said his did.
I still think I'll find a misplaced something
In a small carpeted room-made-shelf.
I still hear the music, 2 Become 1,
Love coming easy, and love being true,
And dreams being fate, fate being my making.

I climbed into the tree house with the neighbor’s
Fence as my ladder, and I crossed the black gate
That kept you from falling, and sat on the edge
Of the ply-wood, feeling the world beneath me,
Miles beneath me where the dogs ran.
And the wind seemed to pick up
And the earth seemed to swell, and I knew by facing
That height I would conquer life.
Life would be that carefree summer.
Life would be whatever bright nature dictated;
Life would be an optimistic orphan in a hidden cabin in a wood,
An abandoned girl living in a wondrous landfill with a dog
Named Miles. And true love would come coincidentally,
With an eternally painted smile and soft blonde hair.
And our kitchen would be yellow and giving birth
Wouldn’t be scary, and whatever I desired,
If I desired to chase it, would be attainable.

And Oh, how it is to wake up.


(On a none-poetic note, I was Googling my spelling of Furby, to assert I'd been correct, and I found this picture which is the EXACT Furby I had. And I didn't even have to look at more than one page of Furby images. Blessed Karma.)

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Well I Don't See No Holes In The Road But You.

My eyes have been opened today. Would you like to see how?

This will be a good one for all you early blog readers. Remember how smitten I was about a certain boy? Remember how heartbroken I was when it didn’t turn out how I thought? Well, walk with me through the things you don’t remember.

The first time I thought there might be something between us was when a friend, we’ll call her the Girl for identity purposes, called me to tell me that boy had texted her. I was in Ho Ho Gourmet with my mother’s family. Why did I care? She went on to apologize about how this had worked out: he wasn’t supposed to be texting her, he was supposed to be texting me. Of course, I suddenly felt, in my core, betrayed. Well, ends up—according to that Girl’s claims—he was asking her if I liked him. I took that as a dashing sign. Just goes to show how elementary I still am. Er… was. Hopefully.

Well, I went home to this news and ran upstairs in a flurry. Of course that meant he loved me. Duh.

For the next hour I heard second hand all the things he was saying. She was the messenger. For an hour. Then finally my number was given to him and he and I actually texted. Best night ever, I thought.

Embarrassment still burns like it’s fresh.

So on went the days, and occasionally she’d say what he’d said, sending me forwards of his response to various things in their conversations. About me. Oh gross, I’m an idiot.

Everything I did with him, with the exception of a certain extracurricular we shared, she was some way a part of. But come on, she was my best friend, right?

Occasionally my mind replays the image of her forwarded text (in response to if he liked me) saying he was “indifferent, but beginning to notice”, and the way his eyes looked that one date we had when he placed his hand on my thigh and I blabbered like an idiot, and the look in those same eyes when he told me the thing I’d just overheard about him and another girl would be “our little secret.” And I wonder why. Why did I read it like it was good? Why did he put his hand there? Was it just because he was going through the motions, because he actually felt something, because he knew I’d feel something, or because he knew how I felt and wanted to see if he could get himself to feel the same? Why?

And it’s all been of late I’ve been analyzing his actions, so stuck I am in the rhythm of interpreting written dialogue and stage movement for the play. It’s been so recent that I’ve been trying to unearth the mystique behind the whole “affair”. And today I found the vast majority of it, and it wasn’t even where I expected.

A grand chum of mine was discussing that Girl with me today, going on about her grievances regarding her friendship with said Girl. I’ve come to realize (far too late, I’m afraid) that this (as Lexi calls her) “toxic friend” is only weather-able for a year or so. No more. My chum has found she’s struggling with six months. She was saying how that Girl keeps pinning for that which my chum has, and then she said simply, almost more joking than serious:

“It’s like she’s living vicariously through me.”

Metaphorically, I staggered into the wall.

“It’s like she’s living vicariously through me.”

It’s like she’s living vicariously through me.

And I threw down my pick-axe and jumped on the mound of freshly turned dirt and screamed.
I’d figured it out. And I feel so, so sick inside. I feel so… used.

It’s the first time I’ve felt so. And it’s the first time feeling so could have been so accurate.

I never read straight from that boy his opinion of me. When we went on that date it was a double with that Girl, and apparently she’d been texting him in the time leading up to us picking him up. Everything he did seemed somehow not… real. And it wasn’t my being in ecstasy that distorted the impression I received. I’d assumed it was him striving to be a gentlemanly date. Or was it something she… Oh, what a fool I’d been!!!!! I honestly cannot find words adequate to express this swirling pound of emotion. The RAT! How dare she; but alas I get ahead of myself.

I found a few months ago (as alluded to in my Opportunity Train post), that my knowledge of right and wrong doesn’t exist with her. All of last year, and that one day we hung out two months ago, whatever I set in my head I wouldn’t do, I’d do. If she said it was logical. I’m remembering now hundreds of things I’ve said or done that were logical because she took my desperate belief of Fate and warped it into her own sick meaning. Fate is not God given, oh no. Oh no. Fate is the idiotic illusion that things will work out; Fate is something she says that you moronically believe will come to pass and YOU ARE WRONG. You are heart-wrenchingly WRONG. And you scramble in grief for months, and you find something better and she gnaws her claws again into you sinews and tells you which way to move, for Fate has scripted it, and you follow, and you break what you had yet again. And you lose what you had yet again.

And why? WHY? Because she has no ability to find happiness of your caliber anywhere herself. She’s too fake, too outgoing, too “friendly” in the most immature and grotesque way that no one in their right mind except for God himself would care give her a second glance in the category of love, and only because God loves all his children. Only because God is God. Everyone who’s met her doesn’t care for her that way, but you, oh you, idiotic girl! You let her in the gates of friendship and she left through the melted, distorted, grated remains of your heart. You. Had. All. She. Had. Not. You were all she wasn’t; all she could never be, and “God, how we get our fingers in each other’s clay[!!!] That’s friendship, each playing the potter to see what shapes we can make of the other.”*

But it’s not “friendship” the leech wants. It’s not “friendship” the reason she’s meddling in your clay.

She’s living vicariously through you.

That boy was never mine. Perhaps he could have been. Perhaps, if I hadn’t sat where I sat in choir, if I hadn’t gone from class to class with her, if I hadn’t felt she’d be my ticket to actually making friends in high school, perhaps it would have been different. Perhaps he would have liked me for me, instead of all heaven knows she told him of me; perhaps he would have cared not to trample my heart by at least staying my friend instead of asking her at our day activity if he could do something with her sometime. And perhaps the boy that followed him, the one who truly seemed to like me, and the one I, truly, liked back, perhaps we would be somewhere now. Or at least would have had something better to write in each other’s yearbooks than the “dan”ce. And why? Why did things fray? Why did the ribbon of my splendid life need to be pruned and re-stitched?

It was her.

And I pray you learn from my mistake, I pray you ignore that she’s your acquaintance and ignore her presence in your life, I pray you don’t room with her in college, I pray she somehow starts to take your sense of humor as complete and utter hatred toward her and grows to hate you too. Because then, like me, you won’t have to deal with her, other than the occasional rant she mutters about you literally behind your back, and other than the meager twang of guilty fakeness you feel when you pretend to smile at her, because she’s pretending to smile back.

And I pray you've guessed who she is, because honestly, and I say this with a pinch of regret only because I try not to say such comments, I hate her as much as she hates me.

And I’ll die before ever including her in my affairs again.



*my personal favorite book quote from Ray Bradbury's Something Wicked This Way Comes (exclamation points are my own doing.)