Monday, August 31, 2009

When it rains it pours

So this week has been pretty hard. I moved house, and the couch we got did not in any way fit through our narrow hallway, my boyfriend and I broke up after 3.5 years, I was sick to my stomach and not eating food for five days, I quit my job, started a new job the next day and worked eight straight days (going on twenty-one). And did I mention insomnia and the usual family drama?

But, I'll be ok. Going through some shit, while it's hard, really helps you realize where you are on the karma circuit. And you know what? I am so lucky.

This week:
-When I lost it at work, my friends came, picked me up, fed me lunch and dinner, and sat down and talked me through it for an hour.
-When I quit my job, the same day, I got another job offer with the first place I applied to.
-When I missed my bus going to my own art opening, a few friends pulled right up on a random back street and drove me there ontime.
-When my boyfriend and I broke up, my friends immediately picked me up off my ass, before I even realized I was down.
-When I got sick, my friends bought me soup and ice cream, my parents prescribed me some drugs and blood tests, my brother picked me up and drove me to the hospital, and my friend working at Whole Foods even got me some free pricey pro-biotic blackcurrant juice!
-When my couch didn't fit in my house, two days later my other friend bought it and offered to move it for me.
-When I found out my ex-boyfriend (rather tackily) decided to go to a fancy art dance party with another girl, less than a week after we'd called it quits, I ran into 12 of my friends at a local bar who were there to cringe and pat my back, and a couple new people who liked that I knew the play Twelfth Night so much that they bought me some drinks!
-When I came home again to an empty new apartment, there was a note from my roommate saying there were ice cream sandwiches in the freezer and home-made pasta sauce in the fridge.
-PLUS my friend from Greece said that she is planning to bring me a care package IN PERSON this fall--!
-Doule-plus we have a new roommate, an artist and 28 year old totally responsible and friendly and seemingly put-together guy.

So, wow. While I've been feeling a whole lotta bad lately, life and friends and family have helped to make it a little more bearable. For goodness sakes, organic pro-biotic juice? My heart aches (and so does my stomach), but it also swells with joy at my blessed life (and, lots of tasty food items, respectively).

Thanks guys.

Thursday, August 13, 2009


The boyfriend passed all his exams and is finished with college!

With that, a reprise, with an alternate video version of Sheila's hit!

Friday, August 7, 2009

Martha's Vineyard Osmosings

Sorry, dear readers, but I'm on vacation, and thus brimming with bloggerific potential! Read up, thirsty souls, for ye have not imbibed for too long...

Yesterday my parents and my sister and I went on a "Martha's Vineyard Ghost Tour" in the town of Vineyard Haven, formerly Holmes Hole. Our leader was none other than the author of Vineyard Supernatural, a Ms. Holly Nadler, who has spent decades researching the former lives of spirits who haunt the Vineyard.

Now. I am pretty comfortable believing in things people can't see. I like astrology, (as former entry will show) and I'm loosely spiritual. I also like reading fiction, and fantasy novels which, though it is hard for me to believe, some people don't. I'd like to think I also believe in ghosts.

But you see, any time I get close to people who really, really believe in these things to the point where they're preaching one thing or another, I recoil, utterly turned off by the bullshit.

So, as you can imagine, the ghost tour initially held promise, until, of course I realized that this bat actually believes in all of this crap. It's such self-important BS to think that humans have some sort of privilege that allows them to exist after nature says you're toast!

Granted, as Holly explained, I may not be one of the 20% of the human population that is considered "by psychologists" to be "extremely sensitive" to the "osmosings" (yes, osmosings). But, regardless of my physical sensitivities to the spiritual world, the stories she told failed to incite any level of pity or curiosity or actual belief in me. Holly explained that Vineyard Haven was victim to an imbalance in spiritual negativity; in fact, she was even able to identify a Negative Vortex on the site of the MV Bank, where some 17 year old boys had been abused by a nasty old man. She grimly stated that she felt sorry for the people of Vineyard Haven, because they were in really deep. "Things happen here." Give me a break. I mean, listen. Spirits of Holmes Hole: I'm sorry if you were struck by lightning in 1790 or if your infant child died in 1840, but get OVER it already!

(This callousness may be a bi-product of my trip to Poland just a year ago, where every block you walked about 40+ people were at some point or another shot dead under one tyrant or another. If you were "sensitive" and born in Poland, well, good luck, tortured soul!)

The best part probably came when she explained some extremely disturbing experiences she had at home (with her high-school aged son and EX-husband) after having used a Quija board to contact a dear, departed aunt. Apparently the week after, she:

1) Was unable to lock her door properly


2) Discovered a weird unidentifiable drawing of an Indonesian demon which somehow moved mysteriously from her desk to a neighboring chair one day when she decided to vacuum her place.

She concluded, based on these happenings that it must have been the Quija board. Apparently an evil spirit had impersonated her aunt and had successfully infiltrated their safe haven. She proceeded to put the board in a box, and put that box into a pillowcase and then stowed it in her basement. I could just imagine her then-husband and son having a real field day with this crap...

I don't think anything more needs to be said. I don't think her beliefs really threaten me, but I guess I needed to say something after respectfully listening to her half-baked stories for an hour. But in case your interested, here's a picture I took in front of the Negative Vortex. Apparently, with digital photography, "orbs can be detected." It didn't work for me, but it was worth it for this creepy pic.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

The Moth and the Flame

I looked up my relationship with my boyfriend in a bookstore (in the great work, The Secret Language of Relationships) and the description was: "The Moth and the Flame."

If T or I had been born a week or so earlier, we might have been something like "Intellectual Rigor" or "Too wonderful"...but no.

I read on, horrified, as two paragraphs summed up the trajectory of our relationship. I am the moth. He is the flame. It was all pretty simple. It could work--but it would require a delicate dance the whole way. Potentially very harmful.

The last line of the profile when something like, "If you are a Gemini and just started this relationship and have no idea what we're talking about, just wait."

Don't get me wrong, I take this truth with a grain of salt. I mostly enjoy thinking about how I can't possibly have control over things. It's enlightening!

Hmmm...but you know what I really love about astrology? It leaves a lot up to the imagination...raawr.

Thanks to Shannon* Dorn for this delicious** (and initially censored) image, which I found at

**I'n'it great that the flame has the bigger rear?! How sinuous!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

I just can't change my parents

They aren't bad people. Actually, they're really nice. Respectable people. And they love me and I love them.
That said--they drive me absolutely nuts.

Sometimes, well, most of the time, we just don't seem to mesh. Like when they invite me to dinner, and I get there, and there's pork on the table, and potatoes that were cooked with the pork, and bread. Then, when I go to make myself another dish, and my mother asks me, "Isn't this food good enough for you?" I refuse to answer because she knows I'm a vegetarian.
Or when my dad showed me his office, which is an office, in a building. And he was so proud of it because he worked 21 years in a windowless office to get this job so he can have these windows. Whereas working in an office at all is not on my agenda! (I HATE offices!!!!)

To boot, I've been having problems at work. I'm pretty sure my boss has an alcohol problem. She's nasty, and capricious, and rude. And their refrain has been: what can you do to make it work?
They shrug and roll their eyes when I answer truthfully to the question, "How has work been?"

My parents are so busy encouraging me to work hard in life for the "things that matter," that they forget to have a little fun and forgiveness in the meantime*. I worry about them a little bit, and hope they're making the right choices for them.

(*My dad spends about 4 hours at his computer every day of vacation so far, emerging, thrilled and saying "I got some good work done today!")

I asked a friend before I went away for two weeks with my folks what my mantra should be, as they were already getting under my skin.

And he said, "You know, it took me years to figure this out, but you really can't change who your parents are." And he would know; he still has to deal with his parents shenanigans, despite living in a different state, having a life & family of his own, and having achieved a great deal of success in his career. From all I hear, they were/are pretty messed up. Alcohol, abuse, adultery. The works. He went on to say, "For a while I thought I could, like get my mom to stop drinking. I thought that if I was really on top of it she would have to come around, but she never did."

While I saw his point, I felt pretty sad about this. I was first sad because of what he had to go through, which I can't ever fully comprehend, nor wish to. Pang--it hit me like a cold wind when your hair's wet. I wish that he'd had a better time of it; but I think he turned out wonderfully.

I was also sad because of the subsequent wisdom his experience provided me. He was right. (Fshhewww, follow up cold wind...)

So. I probably can't really expect to see my parents, like, loosen up a bit on my terms. Nope. They'll either be who they are going to be, or they'll change for the better or worse, but I can't feel like I have the power to do anything with them. It's like your freshman year roommate. Sometimes you get a perfect match, and sometimes it ain't perfect. I just can't change my parents. I. just. can't. change.
my parents.

This got me happily through the next couple days of family vacation.

But you know what? I'm not zen yet. [Note: If you aren't ready for an utterly frivolous, nitty-gritty vent session, complete with dialogue, go back to failblog where you will find more one-to-one satisfaction...]


Yesterday at dinner, my dad was trying to convince my 11 year old sister, that it might be more important to take up a rare sport for the "scholarship potential" in college. And I was like I can't change my parents, but in the battle over the sister, I'd like to reserve a small sphere of influence! That's bogus, I blurted, because then she'll have to do a sport all the way through that she might not like! Annie, do what you love, this will lead you do great things!
And the battle drums sound, a theatrical dance ensues:

Dad: I don't think so. Sometimes you have to work hard in life. Sometimes you have to make a sacrifice.
L: But she won't be happy. She will be depressed because she has to wake up and keep her scholarship! Annie, only do it if you want to!
Dad: No, I disagree. You can't always just do what you want. I worked hard to get where I am today.
L: Yeah? In an office with big windows? [L rolls eyes and twiddles pointer finger in the air] Well maybe some of us don't want that.
Dad: I worked hard for that office, 21 years. [Puts a mouthful of salmon into his mouth)
[Beat, L: This is, L realizes, not at all about Annie, but about Dad and L again...crud. Is it too late to back out now?]
Dad (continues): Your Mom had to take out loans in college and it has CRIPPLED us.
[Beat, L: Yep, in too deep.]
L: WHAT?! I think that's a bit strong!
Dad: How many two physician families do you know who live like we do?
[Set note: Gentle Martha's Vineyard sea breeze rustles the leaves of the 100-year old tree growing on the porch of my grandmother's condo, salty sea intermingles with the gentle perfume of lilies. Helloooo it's beautiful, we're on vacation on Martha's Vineyard, half the country is jobless!!!!]
L: How do we live?? I think we live FINE. VERY FINE. EXTREMELY COMFORTABLY! Are you KIDDING?!
Dad: It's crippled us. Think of where we could be.
[At this point L remembers the matra told to her by a wise man ~ I just can't change my parents ~ she turns dramatically to her 11 year old sister, who has now probably stopped thinking about college scholarships, and started wondering about when the s'more making will commence...]
L: Annie: If you are unhappy in what you do it's not worth anything. My best friend in college took out a ton of loans, and majored in Creative Writing! And she's fine! You should go for what you want in life. And if you have to wake up at 5 am to do lacrosse will that make you happy?
Annie: What's lacrosse?

End Scene.

Well, L's done it again! Gone and ignored very useful, sensible, even wise advice in favor of making the same damned mistake over and over until it's been beaten into her own non-fictional head. I feel, however, like I'm getting better each time. I'm not so emotionally bogged down by this kind of "discussion." And I'm starting to let go a little more each time, and be ok with their decisions, while I try harder to make decisions that are true to who I am.