Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Breathing in the things around you...

Went out to dinner with a friend last night, to a little ramen place on Olypmic Boulevard.

He's foreign to me. So quiet, so introverted, this I understand. I have my days, an occasional week or two, where the last thing I want is social interaction and I do my best to avoid contact with others, especially contact with friends because I know it's likely that my desire to be as far away from them as possible will bleed through.

My friend rarely leaves his apartment, other than for work and errands. He's a brain, an up and coming programmer. Constantly plugging away at the keyboard, obsessed with designing things bigger and better.

I was trying to convince him to get out more, to go see more of, at least, Los Angeles. He has so little interest in doing so.

And while I was talking, I quickly realized that he knows who he is, what he's doing with his life, what his interests are. He found his nook early on and there's no further need for exploration.

My nook? Gods, do I even have one? Scouring the streets, the internet, diving through books, talking to strangers, trying to find out what I am missing, where the hell are others like me, where do I fit in all of this, why is it so rare for me to be able to relate to someone? (When) will I figure it out?

My mother says she admires me, how I go out and explore, how I am constantly trying new things and, even when afraid, forcing myself into new situations. Pushing my boundaries, making myself uncomfortable, driven on by the idea that just over that next ridge I'll find what it is I'm looking for.

That those places or people I find that resonate in me, the doorways I step through and know that I've found another piece of something I should know, that one day I'll crest that hill and know I need to go no further.

After dinner, we took a walk.

The big Krav Maga studio, fists swinging into bags, the abbreviated shouts and slam of flesh into canvas, echoing through the glass into the street. I wanted to watch, wanted to see the sweat flying off their bodies, their brutal drive towards whatever goals they've set themselves.

... ... ...

This coming year... my birthday is in about three weeks. SFPlayboy is coming down, both he and GV8 have agreed to my request for DP.

Actually, what Playboy said was, "Fuck yeah, birthday girl!"

They're such givers. So self-sacrificing and noble.

... ... ...

Class is proving to be an interesting place. Returning to college, though I never really left it since I came back, because of work.

Surrounded by, mostly, two types of people.

The kids in their late teens, early twenties, pushing for that diploma so they can launch themselves into the world, and those who got married and started families much too early, and are now returning to school to address their neglected (and usually abandoned) education.

It leaves me feeling old.

And I shouldn't be. It seems silly.

What am I supposed to say, though?

Reading The Awakening, discussing women's rights, sexuality, search for identity, questioning of self, adultery... so many of these kids... it goes right over their heads. Am I supposed to mention what it feels like to be the one pursued by a friend's roving husband? Should I mention rolling around in bed with two men while popping pills? Or the nameless sex searching for a sense of self-destruction? Of what it feels like when you're coming out of a dream of life? Swing clubs and pawing men, straddling someone so much stronger than you, knowing that you are more than they could ever be, and that, as the years pass, this feeling will continue to grow?

Then to Into the Wild. What am I supposed to say? I mean, really. I've hung out with those kids. Trainhoppers, bums, hitchhikers, those who have been on the road for years, living in forests, living off the kindness of others or their own intelligence. Alaska? I've been there. I was caught in a storm while kayaking about fifty miles out from civilization and was nearly smashed on the black rocks of some island in the middle of nowhere. Paddling through iceflows, watching glaciers fall, sliding over sheets of ice.

They go home to their families, to their roommates, their boyfriends, their husbands and children.

I go to my couch for the evening, or a sleeping bag on the floor, or a lover's house and spend the night in exhausted sex. I wake in the morning, get coffee, and go into the office, knowing that the next day will bring something different, a new place, new faces, and I get to watch the world and see what it will bring by my door.

So much has changed.

1 comment: