Wednesday, July 28, 2010

(An Irregular) Ode on Noah's Bagels

Oh baby can't you see
I like to feel the passion to the point of no return
Oh baby, I will be in full reaction It is Tuesday, noon at Noah's Bagels in the Financial District.
I do not understand the haircut of the woman in front of me
The wedge or why it does that;
Why this place has posters of The Cotton Club
Images of vintage New York when they only have stores
In California, Oregon and Washington.

One city transposed over another, a time
A culture. Shmears and Nosh Cards,
I think I am offended
Though I could just be lonely
Or bored. The Asian woman at the next table
Keening back and forth, back and forth
While she eats her lox. Nobody looks up.
(If she were a guy I'd be afraid she was masturbating
But everyone knows Asian women don't
Jack off to Signature Sandwiches.)

Me with my Asiago Bagel Dog--
Reminds me of Center Market when I was little
How I'd tape my nose up
And walk down the street to buy a bagel dog
In the summer, because I could.
Here there is no Wifi, Just Expose
You're taking me to the point of no return
You're taking me to the point of no return
You're taking me to the point of no return.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

And That's That (That's What She Said)

Everyone's been asking (and by everyone I mean my mother and my sister-in-law), how was the reunion? Alas, I am something of a pussy and cannot/will not tell tall tales of hair gone gray, thick necks and waists. I mean, who knows? I might see these *people in another ten years, right? (Holy Mother of all That is Inevitable: I will be 47.)Bryan & me: Zero Year Reunion, Grad Night 1990. Note the eyebrows, the scrunchie on my wrist just waiting to bring down the loft of my hair. Why was my head so large, anyway?

What I will say is this: As we drove into the parking lot of the restaurant I started apologizing to Bryan for making us go. Like really fast, over and over I'm sorry, I shouldn't have done this, I'm sorry, we don't have to go, what have I done? And then I asked him how we could find some pot because all of a sudden I really wanted to hot box our car even though I haven't gotten stoned since 2002.
Bryan and me: 10 Year Reunion, 2000. Note the bad Prom pose back when we were ironic and DINKS and slept 'til 11am on the weekends. (Now we are DIKS.)

I had to settle for a glass of white wine, then two, then more. Why white wine I will never know seeing as how I have never ever liked white wine but it seemed like something a 37 year old who has her shit together would drink, yes? Sauvignon Blanc, a crisp Chardonnay? Seven of them, please. (And now I have said pussy and shit in this post, i.e. this is not me, it's not, but who is? Here...)
Carrying on the tradition o'cheese: 20 Year Reunion, Saturday night.

So I got super drunk at my reunion and told boys that I used to have crushes on them and talked to the guy who set off a fart bomb in homeroom, apologized for making out with people so many years ago when I shouldn't have and hugged friends that I once swore I would never speak to again.

And on the way out at the end of the night I crouched down and peed in the parking lot.

All in all, it was mortifying, fun, drunken, humbling, stumbling, stupid and young. In other words: it was the perfect reunion.

The End.

*Not you. You are one sexy beast you Drake Pirate you who may be reading this after Saturday night. Honestly, you've aged well, pinkie swear.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Portrait of the Artist as a (Apparently Not Even Close) Young Woman

I am generally of the belief that this is as young as I will ever be so shut the eff up furrow between my brows and stop squinting. (Too many times I have thought I was too old to wear something/try something/do something only to look back years later and marvel at how young I was at the time.)

Time. (Did I ever tell you that I can play The Time on the piano, courtesy of lessons circa 198something?) Of course this mind set is best served to the young and not, say Sartre who said that things are entirely what they appear to be and behind them there is nothing. Dead philosophers claiming we are spirits clad in veils, and that you cannot ever unscramble an egg.
Wha--? I mean, this is all well and good, not to mention true. Someday I will look back at this post and laugh at my silly self, she of the fine lines who only had to get up once during the night to pee. But not today. No, today I am experiencing a convergence of crap: my 20 year high school reunion this weekend, my 38th birthday next month and then this latest news that women are at the peak of beauty at 31. 31! Which puts me, of course, on the south end of that slippery slope slide into une femme d'un certain age. Jolie laide, the French do have the best expressions for prismatic beauty. (Mon dieu, I just hope I am never referred to as a handsome woman.)

I don't think you are supposed to talk about such things really, beauty, like money, spoken quietly behind the powder room door. How pretty am I? Not the prettiest nor the ugliest, not the oldest or the estiest. But sometimes I yawn while sitting in my car at red lights and notice that the person in the car next to me is looking. Then the light changes and the stranger zooms off, forever knowing me only as a woman who looks like this:
But wait! I want to say. That's not me! But it is, of course, me: big pores and crepey eyelids. For all I know I might get that thin spittle thread stretching from my top to my bottom teeth and strangers look away, disgusted.

When I was little I would wonder when I would be my prettiest. This was before I knew the lyrics to Que Sera, Sera, and so I would question if it would be when I was 20, 25, though 30 always seemed too old. I forgot that I used to think about that, and now I wonder--when was it, that single frame moment when I was my most beautiful? Because they say it already happened.

Who was I at 31 that I missed the supposed prime of my beauty? A girl who didn't feel comfortable referring to herself as a woman? A girl who very likely felt too old to be beautiful and too young to know better?Well, apparently I was a girl who lightened her hair waaay too much, because here I am in Vega$, luck be a 31 year old lady waiting for cherry! cherry! cherry! Sinking her hopes into something over which she has no control in a room with no clocks.

Dead philosophers say that with age comes wisdom, or maybe it's dead humorists who say that. Who am I now? A girl who still feels funny referring to herself as a woman, 7 years past her prime, a girl of an uncertain age caught between harshly-lit reflections in store front windows and the feeling inside that what I was waiting for and what they are writing about--that it is all happening right now.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Ah, the Humanity! The Hormones!

I don't know why I am posting this video other than the fact that at some point in the 80's I had the exact same haircut as every girl (and every guy) pictured. Plus I rocked the same Esprit sweatshirt and madras shorts and sweet Jesus, clamdiggers. Honestly, what was wrong with us???

Yes, this video is pointless and a little long, but I found myself transfixed. And uncomfortable. Giggle-y and awkward, peeking out from behind my long bangs swept to one side, my eyes lined in aqua, pushing boys because I did not know how else to touch them. *I think I hate my mom just watching this video.

*Not really. I mean, I never hated my mom per se, but when I was twelve and she breathed, I rolled my eyes. In related news, in 8 years I am so fucked.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Ghosts in My Machine

Let's just say that I die this weekend. Hypothetically speaking. Like maybe I sneeze while taking out the garbage which startles a nearby hive and I am attacked by 417 angry wasps. Or I choke on a piece of mint in my iced tea. Could totally happen. I could be dead by Monday.So let's just say that I do die and my family has to settle my affairs which basically means they have to take over my car payments and cash out the $26 balance on my Paypal account. Nothing big seeing as how I just finished the dishes and the laundry, how I scrubbed the floor with my latest Virgo fixation the Magic Eraser. ("In life she lived pretty clean" is one possible epitaph.)But what about the Other Me? The Me that exists in email addresses, on Facebook, on this blog, the me that gets Viagra spam, my passwords so slapdash that even I can't remember what is uppercase and what is numeric? The me that is not so clean?
I couldn't help but think of what my legacy might be this morning as I glanced through the random photos I have saved on my computer for who knows what reason. What sort of story will I tell through dusty 140 character updates? Who was that woman whose hard drive was heavy with--WTF Is That Anyway?
So I guess what I'm saying is that I'm sorry. Dad, Andy, Bryan, Zoey, Derek & Diana (I am not apologizing to my mom because whatever she has in her bedside table drawer is no doubt 1,000 times more scandalous and probably still alive.) I am sorry, don't quite know what else there is to say. Yes, I was your daughter, sister, wife, mother who didn't dare drink the milk a day past its expiration. But I am also this: a woman who for some reason cannot bring herself to delete this photo of a bejeweled phallus from her computer.In Memorium. Or not. I mean, I probably won't die this weekend but it's nice to know that if I did my family would not be so surprised at what they might find. (Just don't look in the old traincase in the bottom of my closet.)


Wednesday, July 14, 2010

A Petunia Face PSA

You know what you should not do if you are feeling the slightest bit hormonal? Or sadish. Or scared or contemplative, if you are feeling neutral to positive even, if you are happy, if you are gurgling over with joy, if you are simply breathing?
You should not watch The Road. Like, ever. Except maybe if you really want to kill yourself and just need that last nudge of confirmation that there is no hope, then yes, you should watch this movie. Otherwise, don't, because Holy Post-Apocalytic Thickened Yellow Toenails, people, I saw this last week at my brother's house and still can't shake the unrelenting bleakness of WTF Happened. Quick! Somebody find me a kitten! Or take me to Target so I can feel safe within the aisles of logos and clean!
Okay, there. That's better. Zoey posing on her Auntie Morgan's pink scooter with and without sparkle stripe helmut.
Carry on.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Boo Radley FTW!

I think I have a problem.Of course as far as problems go this one ranks right above running out of ice cubes and directly below not having exact change, but still. The above pic shows the lip products that I apparently carry around with me on my person, in my purse. (This does not include the myriad glosses, stains and sticks in my makeup bag or stashed in drawers around the house.) Vitamin Schticks (bonus pucker punch points for the name!). I'll take one Revive and two Power-C's, s'il vous plait.

Speaking of the Gimme Gimme's, I desperately want this anatomical heart ring, even if it does kinda' look like a booger.Something tells me it's all about context, though, so as long as the bauble stays on your hand and your fingers steer clear of your nose, the ring should look more aortic than anything else.

Then this, just for Tuesday poops and chuckles. Because also on my List of Things I Want/Need/Now? A Sassy Gay Friend. And a neighbor to put soap carvings in the bough of my tree. (Not a euphamism, though I guess this makes me a stupid bitch, too.)


Monday, July 12, 2010

The Ambiguously Camel-Toed Duo

Warning: This may or may not be a metaphysical Stuart Smalley-type post involving, but not limited to, wings, direction, traffic cones and my testicals, imaginary and ovarian.

I went hang gliding. And when I say hang gliding I mean the pussy introductory kind of hang gliding off a low-slung sand dune with an instructor barely letting go. Still, I flew, and I was not afraid. Here is what I am afraid of: wasting away from a terrible disease, losing mental and/or physical capacity, drowning, going pee at midnight and accidentally staring in the bathroom mirror while I involuntarily chant Bloody Mary over and over and over with the window cracked open one inch, sharks, pooping my pants in public, not having any money, the dark, bad breath, black widows.

Here is what I am apparently not afraid of: flying.

I used to have flying dreams when I was a kid. Of course nothing is more boring than listening to other people's dreams, but I will tell you this: someone was always chasing me and all I had to do was concentrate to lift off. Take off, swoop, soar, glide, and it always felt completely natural, as if I always knew how to fly. Then something happened, I don't know what and I don't know when, but I stopped having flying dreams. Maybe people stopped chasing me or I knew I could turn around or run. Maybe I grew up, got grounded, maybe I grew afraid. Maybe, maybe, maybe.

Last week I was afraid. Of this and that, running from the other. We were visiting my brother when I told them that I was looking for a sign. What to do? Yes or no? Turn around? Or run? My stomach in knots barely able to eat. Andy suggested we go out to the desert and do 'shrooms like that one episode of Entourage, but instead we ate Subway sandwiches and went hang gliding.

Those three traffic cones on the beach? That's your goal. Don't take your eyes off of them. Don't grip the handle. Don't try to fight the wind. Don't steer. In fact, you fly better if you just let go. Seriously. Let. Go. This is what the instructor told me and so I listened even though I did not get mushrooms on my 6" Veggie. (It was either that or the following gem from "Despicable Me": You will not cry, or sneeze or barf or fart! And while those words also sounded prophetic, I chose to get my sign from someone non-animated.)
I like to think this picture illustrates me cupping my balls in that macho way that men have to emphasize a point.

Because then? I flew.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Road Trippin'

Before we left on our road trip I printed out this picture for Zoey to color in while we were in a restaurant or on a particularly yawning stretch of Driving Somewhere Else.
She colored her in red and made him a tiger with stripes. Brava, my girl, brava, (even if I would've given him a mullet and turned them into John Stamos and Lori Loughlin from Full House, how could I expect her to grasp that cultural reference from before her time?)

With love from somewhere on the coast of California,

Friday, July 2, 2010

One Day of Summer

A few surefire signs of summer...

Skinned knees. And ankles, the tops of the feet. The mere fact that it's too hot to wear anything but seven bandaids and a headband.
Flip flop tan-line, though it may well be dirt. No matter.

Suddenly noticing out of the corner of your eye that the chrysalids in the Bug House have finally opened, and then letting the new baby butterflies taste the coconut ice cream still sticky on your fingers.
Never mind the manhands, it was truly a spiritual moment.
Realizing that the butterflies were born the day before you go on a road trip, and oh god--what if they hadn't hatched? You picture yourself coming home to a net house full of whisper-thin dead wings torn from flapping hungrily against the sides, or the alternative--taking them with you, a house full of crisp cocoons wedged between the surfboard and the juice boxes, waiting to hatch on that taut ribbon of I5.
These are not the things one thinks of in January. Of hats and sand, the smell of bbq two streets over, of a day that seems to stretch and then drip into tomorrow.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Alexia. (Such a Pretty Name, Too Bad He Can't See It.)

You know what makes a certain writer feel ├╝ber-cruddy that she has not written a book, let alone published one? Or two? The fact that her occipital lobe has not been damaged and she has not lost the ability to read and yet still she hasn't written said book. That's what.

If I seem to vacillate wildly between woe and wow it's because I'm human. And I'm writing it down. And sometimes I need something to write about. (Other times I've just eaten a bag of Soda Pop Shoppe Jelly Bellys and my jaw feels jittery with glazed corn syrup that only tastes like root beer if you close your eyes and really think about it.)

I saw this poster the other day and fell in love. Then I remembered that Audrey Hepburn had eyes that tilted up just so and an entire word that became hers and hers alone: gamine. She also had a pet deer which makes me poo-poo the poster, because why wouldn't a girl who feeds a fawn think that everything is within reason?

Of course she also spent part of her childhood in the Nazi-occupied Netherlands and went on to do all that humanitarian stuff long before Angelina made it fashionable to look too thin photographed next to refugees, so I go back to feeling bad.

Last night I had a conversation with a friend about what would we have done if we could do anything which is a dangerous conversation to have while eating ice cream on a warm Wednesday night. When I was little I used to want to turn the streets into placid bodies of warm water so that we could all swim everywhere rather than drive. Later I wanted to write, then act, then write again, then something else, not sure what. Sometimes now I think I should have studied acupuncture, or some such art of Eastern healing in which I don't have to touch strangers too much, maybe just look at the color of their tongues from a safe distance of 18 inches away. And I also want to write.

Maybe it would be easier if I lost the ability to read. No more going back to read what I have written, no proofing, no editing, just type type type, tracing the letters on the roof of my mouth before I let go.

What about you? What would you do if you could do anything?