Sunday, April 25, 2010

Roman has prescribed to me that I need to step away from the MRA, evo-psych, and general PUA blogs for a bit, get my head out of that world. I was thinking that myself, so I'm going to try to mellow that side of things out.

When Friday rolled around, I was a small ball of rage promoted by fears and insecurities regarding ending things with GV8. I was snappy and unfocused, completely bitchy and anti-social. Work doesn't help at the moment, as my boss is out of town for the next few weeks, which puts me in charge of a department that I've never been taught fully how to manage.

So I drove over to a large Mexican restaurant down the street from the office after work, book in hand.

I go there about, eh, once every month or two.

But when I arrive, the hostesses (only one of which I ever recognize) seem to know who I am, comment that I haven't been around. I suppose that doing what I do (going to restaurants and eating while reading a book) makes me fairly easy to remember.

"Oh, there's that loser girl. Why isn't she at the bar with friends? Why is she off in a corner, reading a book?"

Nah, I know it isn't that bad.

For more brain relaxation, I went to see "The Back-up Plan" after dinner.

While I was not the only solitary female attending this movie, I do believe I might have been the only one there reading "The Mating Mind" through the previews.

That movie kinda hurt. But the water-birth scene had me laughing so hard I was falling into the seat next to me.

I also was breaking down the male lead's game techniques in my head. I really need a vacation from thinking.

Saturday, I went to the LA Times Festival of Books.

I did not think that there would be so many people there. I mean, really, people don't read. They just don't. Especially here.

But there were people.

I ended up feeling rather awful, for two reasons.

1. I... always feel outside of things. Outside of groups. I never fit in anywhere, in my opinion. So I'm wandering around this book festival surrounded by, theoretically, people that love reading as much as I do. So we should be... similar. Right? Constantly buried in books? Passion for words?

Well, that proved untrue. Well, untrue as far as I could tell.

Looking through books, through all these different booths and publishers with their own agendas to spread, looking for that one that will make me fall in love with the written word again. Failing.

I just want that one writer to knock my socks off. I want roughness and honesty, I want internal range and a hint of self-destruction.

Then I started checking in with the writers groups/guilds/camps/flocks/whatever, trying to see if I could find a writing group that would suit me.

When I tried to explain what I was seeking to do to the VP of GLAWS, checking to see if they had such a group (they sort by type), not so much. He just looked at me, slightly glazed, but still selling. Nice guy, but...

It's probably just me.

It's probably me expecting to be the outsider, expecting that constant judgement and that instinctive recognition. You know, the one where you feel people know you aren't like them just by looking at you, even if you look like everyone else, somehow, some way, they know.

Walk into any group with that mindset, and they'll likely "know", if just by your body language.

So, there was that.

Then, #2, walking around, looking at all these people that are self-publishing, starting their own publishing company, pursuing their dreams, getting themselves out there... and I've done nothing. I do these short bits for the blog and then... that's it. Nothing long, nothing in progress. I don't put in the effort, the time, that is needed for something more quality. I don't submit pieces like I should, I don't try to improve my writing.

I'm so afraid of failure, and so afraid of completing this project, that I do nothing.

So I was walking around feeling like a miserable outsider who has done nothing to try to achieve her goals, put in no work toward the "next great American novel". Going nowhere in life.

It was... no good.

So, around 230PM I used my lifeline and called The Bassist. We decided to go MOCA in downtown, as I had never been.

He got stuck in traffic, so I had a good forty-five minutes to wander around and take pictures of that area of downtown. It was pretty nice, though cold.

When he finally arrived and we got into the exhibit, I realized that I've never understood "contemporary" art. So much of it seems like a waste, like a bunch of overpriced pretentious bullshit.

But The Bassist, being all artsy and stuff, was able to explain it to me in a way that made sense, so I actually started appreciating it and understanding it. Which makes me a little sad because now... yeah, sure, I could see someone buying that painting that is two solid colored rectangles standing next to each other for, oh, $50K.

Or whatever these crazy people do.

The museum had a couple amazing photography displays. Completely emotional, near biographical work. I loved those.

And then The Bassist told me what had happened with this girl he had met.

He's such an unusual guy, and way too smart, that he has a hard time finding women that he connects with. He's also leans towards dating older women, prefers them in their 30s or 40s. He's a young musician. There's this definite gap for him between who he wants to date and who will date him because of that reverse age separation and the social stereotypes that come with being in a band and going on the occasional tour.

So he met this girl last week who was a near perfect fit in all these ways that he never would have expected to find in another person. He was raving to me about her for days because they were so ridiculously well-suited.

Turns out she has a boyfriend that she's been living with that past seven years and he's given her permission to have an open-relationship.

The Bassist, he doesn't swing that way.

He was so disappointed and so angry. Not at her, but at life, about meeting someone so near perfect to find... that.

We drove over to Hotel Figueroa for dinner while he ranted. Sat in the restaurant in the lobby and people-watched and ranted more. Wandered around the Staples Center, then went back to Hotel Figueroa (where we accidentally crashed a private party at the pool/bar, where French women were handing out plastic monkey masks) then drove mad-cap through downtown listening to some amazing Swedish band.

I hit the club without him after that, dancing the evening away even though my legs felt wrecked from walking all day. It's amusing that such minor physical exertion over the course of ten hours can wipe someone (me) out on a purely muscular level.

Afterwards, a group of us hit a nearby IHOP.

I'd rather have gone to Fred 62's, even though it was significantly farther away. But majority (and proximity) won out and about ten or so of us headed over to an IHOP with a too small parking lot.

I think I'm going to make a habit of taking a change of clothes along with me when I go clubbing. This is the second time where I have, fortunately, had a change of clothes in my trunk, so while all the other girls are sitting around in their too-tight club gear, all sweaty and uncomfortable, I'm peeling my stockings off in the bathroom, wriggling out of my mini-skirt, and putting on a comfy pair of cargo pants and flip-flops.

Sure, one might say I should have stayed clubified because I was sitting next to that DJ I have a small fancy for, but I simply could not bring myself to care. It is so very, very nice to be in clean, dry clothes after a night of dancing, while people are bringing you food.

And since I switched to flip-flops in the ultimate effect of laziness, and then propped my feet up on the chair across from me, I got a foot rub.

Yes, that's right. I got to spend all night dancing, sweating my ass off, to go out to an IHOP at 330AM, have food brought to me, be fed perfect bites of pancake by the man across the table from me, and get my feet rubbed.

It was so nice. I was near purring, leaning on the DJ apologizing for my occasional noise, but it felt too good. Being on my feet all day, then dancing... they were sore as hell.

Drove off around 5AM or so, headed home. Quick shower and crawled into bed.

Roman jarred me from my sleep with a phone call at 11AM. I knew I should've texted him when I went to bed, telling him not to call before noon. I think he has a thing for my "oh jesus christ what time is it, where am I, oh god why am I awake??" morning voice. It's all low and raspy, and I'm not coherent enough to be a smartass.

Basically, the morning after a club, I am a defenseless bed-kitten.

I tried to go back to bed after that, but it was too late. Forty minutes of tossing and trying to convince my body that it needed more sleep did not work. Ended up putting on Flashdance while I cooked breakfast, then cleaned and posted some furniture I needed to get rid of on craigslist (did a little photo shoot of it, too). Which still hasn't sold. This is lame.

Finally motivated myself to leave the house, ran by Trader Joe's on the way to my parents' and picked up ingredients for dinner.

There was this cashier, a woman in her fifties or so, dyed red hair, cropped close to her skull. Thinning. A little chunky, but nothing that would be unexpected on a woman her age. Large-framed glasses, heart-shaped face. No wedding ring.

She reminded me of my aunt, the one who killed herself last year.

Just that sort of open, slightly disconnected expression. Not stupid, but a little uncomfortable and unsure. Awkward without knowing why.

I watched her for a bit, as she rang up the man in line in front of me. Wondered if she was a lesbian, a widow, a divorcee, a spinster, or just a woman without a wedding ring. Wondered what she was doing, at her age, running a register at Trader Joe's. Wondered if she had experienced love, how many times, if her heart had been broken, if he was a cheating bastard, or if she had a partner at home that she was totally devoted to. If working at TJ's on the weekend was a way of making ends meet, or just something to do: a time-kill for lonely weekends. A way of getting out of the house.

Arrived at my parents', popped my laundry in the dryer, sat out on the patio with my parents while my father read the newspaper and my mother kicked my ass so hard at Scrabble. It was painful. Something like 196 to 300. I rarely lose that bad.

When I started cooking dinner, my dad got a little snappy. Not at me, but at my mom. Snappy, and unprovoked. Snappy, trying to pick a fight. Snappy, releasing aggression at something other than the actual source. Fuck-with-your-mind snappy.

That combined with his increased activity during the course of the day, even though he's got a chest cold and the last time he had that he ended up in the hospital with pneumonia, I had a mild freak out.

Totally contained, all internal.

But... yeah. The thought of him going into an extreme manic episode again, when there's no drug to blame, how badly that would fuck everything up, topple me off this unsteady perch of sanity, I started shaking. Started quizzing my mom on his behavior, his moods, when the last time he had been to his therapist was.

I'm not going to let this happen again.

My mother is all optimistic, doesn't want to think about it, doesn't think it'll happen again.

I'm on high alert.

I don't want to go through that again. I don't want to watch my mom go through that again.

Dinner was a success with the folks, but I was disappointed. It hadn't come out nearly as good as it had before. Afterwards, Dad and I curled up on the couch and watched Nightmare on Elm Street which, somehow, he had managed to not see until now. He was unimpressed, but I still love that series.

I drove home and went to bed, making it a weekend without any sort of contact with GV8.

It's hard. I feel a bit directionless without him, a compass with no north.

I've never really had a solid direction. Five year plans are as foreign to me as one year plans, it's only of late that I've really be considering the future. I have an envy for people who know what they want to do with their lives, where they want to end up, what their priorities are. A career path, even. It terrifies me to think that I might always be working jobs that I'm good at but don't really have a passion for, don't have an interest in, always rather be writing than sitting at a cubicle.

Three years from now and still in the same industry?

I'd be twenty-nine. How sad is that?

Four years and I'll be thirty. I can't even imagine.

I've been developing this theory lately, about how, when I was a child, avoiding chores (most typically, it was mowing the lawn and I would hide up in my room, hoping that my mother would not wake me and I could "sleep" until it was too late to mow the lawn, which my eleven year-old brain would not realize that it would have to be after dark for that to happen), avoiding pain (shots, lighting matches)... these were things that were dreaded, were focused on.

Each month was slow, waiting for things that were planned weeks or months in advance to happen, waiting for the weekend, waiting for Christmas or Halloween. Life crawled, and each event seemed to have a larger impact then than a similar event would now.

I'm starting to wonder if it is a ratio thing.

When we're five, one day is a significantly larger percentage of our life than one day at the age of thirty. Sure, it's less than 1%, but if we're comparing...

5 yrs x 365 days = 1825 days means 1 day is equivalent to 0.055% of our life. Which doesn't sound like much.

But then we go:

30 yrs x 365 days = 10950 days means 1 day is equivalent to 0.0091% of our life.

Which is, in my opinion, is a relatively large difference. At least it is in social stat. Wish I remembered more of it.

So each day, and the events of each day (or lack thereof) has a greater impact when you've experienced less time because it is more of your life.

Time, in your view, would technically take longer.

Which could help explain why time seems to move so much faster as you age, and the little things have smaller impact, you don't go out of your way to avoid mild, expected pains.

And, yes, I know that there's many contributing factors. Experience. Deadening nerves. Maturity. More activities, more demands on time.

It's just an interesting thought for me.

My parents, being hippies, used to take my sister and I on long roadtrips across the western half of the US. It was normal for a day of driving to range around 8 hours. Sitting in the car for eight hours when you're five or six is a nightmare of boredom. You're sitting there going, "Jesus Christ, this is eight hours of my life and I haven't experienced a large volume of hours yet, I'm only six!"

And you're asking your mom how much longer and, in my family's case, I would be answered in Sesame Street episodes, which were an hour.

"Mooooom, how much longer?"

"Two Sesame Streets, V, and then we'll get lunch."

If it was less than a Sesame Street, she'd hold her fingers apart and explain that if this distance was a Sesame Street episode, then this shorter distance was how much longer we had to drive.

It was those indeterminate ones that drove me nuts.

Time has been a focus of mine, lately. Dealing with self-discipline and reality, shoving through the things that bother me, realizing that it's past midnight right now and I'm exhausted and I'm going to be up in less than seven hours and I lost myself at the computer again.



  1. I've shared your theory considering the accelerating march of time. The physical sense of one second, one minute, one hour, one week, occupying a larger proportion of your young life. There is also the cognitive you get older and assume responsibilities, your life's clutter shrinks time as well.

    In the laws of physics (the laws of our world), time is inversely proportional to your speed. A strange but proven concept. If you're travelling at the speed of light, time will crawl to a near standstill. Mentally I believe the opposite is the case, unfortunately. The faster you move, the faster you think, the faster time passes.

  2. Roman has prescribed to me that I need to step away from the MRA, evo-psych, and general PUA blogs for a bit, get my head out of that world. I was thinking that myself, so I'm going to try to mellow that side of things out.

    I agree. You're *way* too analytical about relationships already. That stuff is just feeding your insane need to understand the workings of every male brain you encounter. How about letting what you know just settle a bit and focus on how you feel instead of picking apart game.

  3. Phoenixism,

    I know nothing about physics, nearly failed out of the class (though it would have helped if I ever attended it). And while physics may disagree, I completely agree with you. I can spend hours lost in my own mind, thinking at light-speed, and not notice the time... but if I get into a situation where I'm not able to lose myself thinking or be otherwise occupied, time crawls.

    And you articulated that so much better than I did. One hour occupying a larger portion of one's life. Perfect.


    Me? Analytical?? Pshaw.

    And, yeah, I do have to understand all of them. It's... a little overwhelming. I do need to mellow out, take a vacation from it all. It's hard when there's so many good bloggers, though. I think you should recommend to me some other, non-game related blogs. :D