who the heck knows anything, anyway

Monday, April 29, 2013


Updates on life, in convenient list form:

1. Operation Social Time was a success! I actually ran into someone at Life Drawing who I'd met at a party about a month ago. And she's awesome (obviously--I mean, we ran into each other at a community center life drawing night). Success! After I came home that night, I put on my pjs and battled the usual feelings of embarrassment (because I am always so dang convinced I've said a million stupid things) and then passed thoroughly out.

2. Went to some new pubs. Found a little one downtown that I'll probably frequent, and spent some time in the sunshine drinking ginger beer on the front lawn of another that's right by Port Meadow.

3. Sunshine is great. Glad we had like two days of it before winter decided to return. Back to getting vitamin D in pill form...

4. My new favorite place is the small Polish grocery store in the little outdoor shopping center by my house. They've been open for about two weeks, and I've been in there five times already. A bag of frozen pierogi for £2? A huge jar of sauerkraut for £0.99? YES PLEASE. I'm working on my Polish, because I seem to be the only non-native speaker who shops there. I at least want to be able to say thank you, so I practice saying "dziekuje" (among like 10 other basic phrases) under my breath every day. Polish is such a rad language.

5. Got my eyebrow pierced. It hurt more than a tattoo, I think, or maybe it just hurt differently. It's pretty gnarly to feel someone manually shove a fat needle into and out of your face. Was a slower process than nose (or ears)--only by a few seconds, but that's a surprisingly long time in context. It's funny how I'm such a wimp about getting shots, but tattoos and piercings make me feel meditative and chill. Ah, the mysteries of the human brain.

6. Turned in my last (non-final-portfolio) packet of the semester on Friday after much kicking and screaming and gnashing of teeth. The novel, she progresses.

7. In case you're totally curious about what I'm reading right now: Nausea by Sartre, Blood Meridian by McCarthy.

8. Game of Thrones, amiright?

Thursday, April 25, 2013

fight fight fight

Everyone experiences feelings they do not like: jealousy, guilt, etc. Well, perhaps some people do like to feel these things, but then I assume the feeling they dislike is calm. I am currently experiencing feelings of resentment. Though my logical brain feels otherwise, my emotional responses to anyone in my field who I perceive to be successful (or even "more successful than me") are extremely bitter this afternoon. I am not envious of their money or their accolades or their fans; I am envious of the fact that they seem able to get their shit done.

I am an occasional procrastinator, but I have been fighting those old urges, and I've been fairly successful. I work every day. I think about my work in the quiet moments before dinner, before bed, while I'm eating my lunch. And yet. I've tried to lower my standards, to just get shit out on the page, but even then--I typically get one or two days of real writing, unencumbered, absolutely flowing, two days of it. And want to know how much I produce during these days? Three pages, if I'm lucky. So I'm feeling resentful. I'm upset at myself for not being able to write 10 pages a day, for not possessing the physical stamina to work for eight hours. It's not a competition, but it can feel like one. I love my peers--LOVE them. They are the brothers and sisters in arms that I never imagined I would be lucky enough to find. I do not like being envious of them. I do not like these feelings that my body has so graciously burdened me with.

The worst part is that I am afraid. I'm afraid that my peers, my advisors, will think I am lazy, will think I am not dedicated. I'm afraid that people outside of my field think I'm a freeloader, because (as all of us know) I've had people treat me like I don't have a "real job," like i am obligated to skip out and do what they want because it's not actually skipping work, for two years. I don't have published work online, outside of a few freelance projects which don't really represent me, or in magazines. I am afraid that I am behind. I am afraid of dedicating my life, my mis-wired brain, to to something I love passionately but which abuses as often as it rewards. I am afraid of failing.

But here I am, doing it anyway. Or trying, at least. Something about this is unhealthy, but I suppose that's the price we pay. Maybe that's really the root of it--I'm jealous of those who don't seem like they have to pay as high a price. I'm off the mark, I know, but I don't know many writers who writhe on the floor and whine quite as ineloquently as I do--or who talk about it. Maybe that's a good thing. I don't know. I'm just upset with myself right now, and I don't have the energy to ask for help with my usual wit. I just wanted to be honest, to let out all these ridiculous feelings that don't serve any good purpose.

Maybe if this was easier for me, I'd be doing it wrong. I don't know. I'm trying. I'm really trying.

Thursday, April 18, 2013

uncharacteristic attempts at social interaction

I want to make friends in this city. I've been here for 3 months, almost to the day, and I've been playing it pretty safe thus far. Tonight, D is going to a co-worker's house for a thing, and I'm going on a [terrifying/exhilarating/mostly terrifying] solo adventure involving a life drawing hour at a community center, followed by an open mic night. The last time I went out on a limb like this was extremely disappointing, but I think it'll be different this time. I'm nervous (blah blah I'm an introvert blah) but, at the very least, I'll get some drawing time out of it. (And I haven't done non-photo-based i.e. real Life Drawing since my art class almost 3 years ago, so I'm stoked!!)

Word on the street is that trying new things is good. New city, new country, TWO new events, and I won't know a single person there--I should be an expert on leaving my comfort zone by, like, 7pm.

Wish me luck?

Thursday, April 11, 2013

every pleasant moment

I'm in bed already. It's 9pm. I'm settling in to read for a while, and it starts pouring down rain. My bedroom is an attic, and the rain falls heavy on the roof. I like it. I'm tucked into flannel sheets with The Brothers Karamazov next to me, and I'm reading by the light of my cell phone because I lack a proper lamp. It works well. I like it. It's dark and I can see the dust floating over the little yellow glow of light and, in this strange cave of mine, where I curl up like a mouse and am safe in my nest, though I am alone I am, for at least this blissful moment, very fond of night.