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jugular dance

encore vide.

30 April 2004

got my consolation sandwich today too, in the form of turkey with pickles & green peppers & olives & tomatoes & lettuce & HANDFULS of pepperoncini, all for the celebration of D's last day, D-the-kook-whose-name-is-Dolores. She started bawling this morning when we gave her a plant and a card but i walked her plant out to her car with her and she didn't even look back as she said goodbye. I'll now be assisting B, who took a day off to go to the races this weekend and said if we needed him he could be found in the red dog line, in loans, as well as opening new accounts and lifting my skirt like mother mary for all the sad men who will need to be weaned off Dolores's delectably svelte memory. Shudder.

well: some 'real writing' and then i SWEAR i'm going to go work on the thingy.

in the night we shall go up to its trembling firmament. in the observatory at the edge of town. no-one's been there for years but the tickettaker with the rusty teeth taking rusty breaths will let us go in. we can stand on the velvet seats and arch our backs to see. i hear the star machine still works let's get it to creak open for us, see the rainbow blur as it projects across your vision. the celestial equator. you hold my heart in your hands. dip your hands in the bucket of water now drag them across the sky and see the rain drops blur the stars. the turning sky is making me nauseated, slow it down, please? can you see Mars through the rusty telescope? we can make clouds to cover the stars together and then i will reveal the constellations to you star by star alpha to omega and you will be pleased with me. that is all i want in my life you to be pleased with me by me. he is laughing by the door. thank him for keeping the lights low for us so i could kiss you soundly as you adjusted the telescope. and wind my fingers in your curls. it's january i can see your breath. please don't let this be all there is. we'll sneak in next week. your little hands and mine will steal the stars
3/31/04

1st and last lines [the only real writing here] from 'the stolen branch' by pablo neruda

i'm laughing - that's my favourite part in Order of the Phoenix, at the end when Fudge calls Voldemort 'Lord--Thingy'. everytime i read that it makes me chuckle madly.
called parents from work: huge mistake! 8:30 EST, Chris royally pissed off because he finally got a job (after my mum & her husband have been riding him since january to become gainfully employed) and nobody's even mentioned it in the house. mum gets on the phone, nice and drunk, proceeds to ask me about the weather (has it cooled off yet? has it cooled off yet? has it cooled off yet?) and then, once my brother is out of earshot, whisper conspiratorially about how he doesn't give me 'the whole story' when we talk. She desperately wants me to tell her what I talk to him about. I refuse to get in the middle, as I both love my brother and owe mum-and-husband a fair sum of money. Living in that house is like the walls closing on you. It feels impossible to be artistic, alive, breathing, there's no way to actually access oxygen or velvet cloth or books, the entire world is locked away and love feels like it's never existed. I remember being treated like that, like I didn't exist but was somehow simultaneously a huge branch in the gears of their pathetic rotating life. They get excited about haircuts. They schedule their haircuts six to eight weeks in advance and refuse to do anything the entire weekend during which the haircut appointment occurs. My father is a CPA and works seventy hour weeks between january and april, and he still takes my brother out to dinner or to play pool once a week. the mum/husband combo work normal boring desk jobs (like me) and do absolutely NOTHING. they are the most unproductive people to ever live. come home, skirt round the corners of the house in stealth pretending they don't see you, sigh in relief when you retreat to the gameroom or your bedroom, get drunk, watch Fox news, pass out on the couch. never 'hey chris let's go out for burgers let's go see a movie' and it's not because he's a fucking drug addict because they never acknowledged my presence either, and they treated him this way before he began to struggle.

alright, this crankiness is ridiculous and it's friday after all so it's got to stop. going to the beach tomorrow perhaps, i'm far too pale...

i received FLOWERS today! from one of our big customers, i'd done some new accounts crap for them and evidently they were pleased, and so the flowers followed naturally. I've never gotten flowers in my LIFE before, never delivered to me. I don't think Josh knows that commerce has evolved to the point where there are companies who will deliver flowers to someone you love for a nominal price. Or even farmer's markets that sell $5 bunches of wildflowers that you can deliver yourself. I was all excited to the point of almost crying, and also really embarrassed that I was so excited and that for a second before i'd opened the card this disgusting rush of hope ran through me and i thought 'it could be anyone, someone could secretly love me, wouldn't it be--' and then i opened the card because everyone was screaming 'why are you going so slow? why are you shaking and mumbling to yourself OPEN THE CARD!' and so i did and it was signed by two women from the company, two lovely lovely women who nonetheless DO NOT love me, not romantically anyhow. T and G bugged me to take them home but they're staying on my desk, they're a sign that I'm useful. people ask and i can tell them i'm the kind of worker random people send flowers to. maybe he'll come by on monday and they will attract his attention even as i cannot.
my mum is SO on the ball:
Are you still writing? If I know you, the
answer is yes. How is that going for you.

couldn't be dandier. by the way, you don't know me, and yes the nice man from that one place is still writing me letters. thank you for sending me the same email three times a week.

it's still early here and i'm feeling morning cranky.

28 April 2004

new bibliography
  1. four contemporary french plays
    1. antigone, jean anouilh
    2. no exit, jean-paul sartre
    3. caligula, albert camus
    4. the madwoman of chaillot, jean giraudoux
  2. the compass rose, ursula leguin (short stories)

  3. the oxford history of islam, editor john esposito

i should be polite and at least capitalise Islam but i'm quite fed up with uppercase letters and so no. i have to stop taking out three books at a time. i showed great restraint in the teach-yourself-language section as well as in the woolfs & asimovs & world travel. almost borrowed a book on parasites which featured a lovely photo of a lamprey on front. refrained; was a juvenile issue anyhow. have an inordinate love for lampreys/hagfish. apparently i can't be bothered with nominative pronouns either. desperately want to borrow a copy of the Qur'an. B&N has a lovely edition though that I'm holding out for to be my very own, so refrained there as well. unsure as to why i keep trying to read plays when i hate plays. unsure as to why i went all wild and borrowed three books when the history of islam alone is enough to press roses in. sent my first love letter to a writer today. also wrote lalo, who hopefully does not hate me/think i'm a stinking whore. hoy.

27 April 2004

looked up a map of Singapore yesterday and kept clicking the 'west' button until i reached UAE. went north and south often as well. got to Madagascar by accident after I coasted southwest from Sri Lanka. It took me nearly ten clicks to reach Africa and the span of ocean between the two made my stomach churn even as it was all just blue on the computer screen. I must learn Arabic, and Malay. I think I'm meant to live in the third world. Then perhaps I could finish my epic story which begun feverishly when i left college (for the first time) and slipped off into silence after the first (40-page) chapter, which I believed was set in England but which I now think I need to be in southeast Asia to ever complete. Physically BE. This revelation came this morning in the shower, i think.

RC - boy from my past who wrote me and then dropped off the face of the earth a few months ago - I have had numerous fleeting thoughts of him being dead. He couldn't write me if he were dead. I have occasionally resolved this horror in thinking that I'd actually rather him dead than have judged me inadequate to receive his correspondence. I really thought it was time to admit that in writing. I hope his mum's okay.

He was in today and had a conversation with G about languages and travelling. G insists Japanese is impossible to learn (arg, no verb conjugations and the complete lack of the letter 'L'! needless to say she doesn't know what she's talking about). He's just back from Australia and going to Italy next year. He took German, Spanish, French throughout school. G feels he's 'perfect for me'. I could've jumped into this conversation anytime
I speak French
I want to live in Tokyo
Japanese has no verb conjugations but kanji will be a challenge
I'd like to learn C++
please befriend me
I did not. I am losing weight and my clothes are all slightly ill-fitting now and I was afraid to stand up because the new blouse I wore today for the first time hung off me though my arms look rather nice in it. So I kept sitting and they kept talking. He showed not the slightest desire to leave; he scooted down the line and kept talking to J even when a line of customers formed behind him. Brilliant, oblivious to the world, linguistic, likes to travel, NOT my type. NOT. Maybe he and G can date; her relationship with the Indian boy 16 years her junior is winding down because his parents are arranging his marriage, and she's beginning to pick fights with our Indian customers over this custom. J, who, before joining Weight Watchers (again) last Thursday, ate at Del Taco every day for lunch, lectured me today about getting enough protein. I really do not think I'm the only one in the office in need of a good lay. B, ex-marine-corps and new office manager, suggested I call him and have him walk me through the fixing of our xerox/fax/kaleidoscope machine by telephone. When he (he) left the office, everyone called goodbye to him, he called goodbye to everybody, I stayed completely silent. I don't even think he looked at me. D shrieked 'Why didn't you say goodbye to {name}, Jenny!' I trembled slightly. I'm so ANGRY with myself i should eat tissue and go to bed early. stoopid jenny no social skills jenny.

DEPOSE a very good word DEPOSITION DEPOSED DEPOSE DEPO
now i feel more like i know what i'm talking about

oh ya, i guess it should be explained that C had jury duty today and so was absent, which is why everyone else had a chance to actually talk to him.

26 April 2004

G is back from 2 weeks' vacation and she's officially been added to the list of people driving me nuts. She's been deposited at my desk for the next week so I can further train her in new accounts, as preparation for D-the-Kook's imminent departure, as though she paid attention in the least when she was with me for 2 weeks in January. The first words she said to me were 'I don't give a shit about this, I'm only doing it because I'm being made to, I'm leaving here soon'. Fantastic! My time is not valuable anyhow, why shouldn't I be made to babysit the cranky merchant teller instead of doing my own actual work, or composing stealthy blog posts, or writing bits of the not-a-book on loose note papers, or making illegal international phone calls? I could launch into a lengthy and unflattering assessment of G's current situation and attitude, but I opt not to. The fact that I forced laughter as some customer sat at my desk telling me and G wifebeater jokes ('what do 54,000 women per year in women's shelters all have in common? they just wouldn't fuckin' listen') for the better part of a half hour has already done ill to my karma.

No 'did you miss me' whispering conversation, much to my relief, though he did call around 4:15 and I had the bad fortune to pick up the line, whereupon he spoke to me in the coolest, most disinterested voice imaginable. I suppose the courteous thing to do would've been to ask him if he had a nice vacation, and so on, but my heart was chugging in my throat much too loudly for all that. He asked for T; I handed him off, glad to be rid of that. Disgusting that any person could affect me so. And G was sitting right there, heard me talk, heard my heart leap into my voice, saw my skin turn purple. All for naught. But when I got home there was an email from Joopitorb in my inbox which made me quite jazzed as it's NOT EVEN THURSDAY waaaaa!

25 April 2004

the boy: 'what're you doing this evening?'
me: 'nothing...just writing & looking out to the backyard, there's lots of roses...'
the boy (trying to sound nonchalant): 'ah, with all your boyfriends, huh?'

aaaaahahahhahahahahhahaaa! big Bill Hicks gut laugh, as apparently all things DO come around again. :)

24 April 2004

and the archives are now called the Back Catalogue cause i'm an SW-loving geeko (that's his foot down there if you care to look)
I SUCK - so hold it against me, you know i'm a fool for you

a nice goodnight from ALL...good memories for jenny
alright, so I transferred all my notes to a word file (roughly 40 pages written and probably just under 20 so far typed), and going back over them in entry i have become at least slightly more confident that all is not total schlock. it makes a difference that i can arrange the words how i want, as i am more anal about spaces and stops than is reasonable. it also resolves the problem of my stoopid hands not being able to write in pace with my brain. less is lost and i don't have to stare at my disgusting immobile handwriting. none of this would've occurred if jim hadn't been plucking away at like 3 in the morning writing me the letter which i rose (having slept upside down on the bed) to and cried and laughed at and wrapped about me like wool and used as courage and have a sentence from pasted on my monitorb (the b is for bargain!) to keep something happening. huh...it's nice having a friend, is that what that's called? plus a nice conversation with my brother just now was heartening as well. plus a credit slip for one of the ill-fitting shirts which i drove all the way (back) to temecula for ensures that sometime in the vague future i may become fashionable. good eeeeeeevening to you.

23 April 2004

Heh - so I came back into my room from chatting in the kitchen with Patrice, who works for Boeing writing proposals for rockets, reached for my cup so I could put some ice in and get some cran-grape juice, and promptly knocked it over so the little water in it could trickle down behind my desk and onto the computer wires. Just as I'm knelt down under the desk, attempting to sop up the water without getting electrocuted, grumbling in profanities to myself, I hear Patrice calling. I go to the hall to see what she wants. She tells me she's been thinking about me and my 'brainiac' qualities and she thinks I would make a fantastic astrophysicist. No joke.

It's sad, because I don't think I see the world right. I don't think I see what other people see. I can string words together in a sentence but maybe some of these simple people like J and D that I know should be writing the stories and poems and I should just become an astrophysicist or get a job writing proposals for rockets or become a lending officer at an up and coming local bank. Too many things I read and wonder why those ideas have never struck me, never even surfaced in a cranny of my brain. I spend lots of time trying NOT to think. Is it that simple people don't know how to not think and so they think and suffer like normal people and are able to properly observe it? I don't even think my suffering is normal. It's muted, I view it from far away, I forget it easily and don't want to come back to it. I process things through my mind and store them as far from me as I can get them. I have to write myself notes while I'm having painful conversations so I can recreate pain later. Yet in this other sense I remember everything. I remember dates, names, birthdays, what people say, entire conversations, anything with words or numbers, things that can be represented in characters. My mother could probably sit and recall the pain she felt on the day I was born and cry about it but I could never do that. I experience pain and I forget it, I store it away. I put it in shoeboxes, as Nancy used to say. so what's here, in the central Jenny, what occupies me and makes me up? ah nothing i'm empty. there's nothing to me, i remember nothing, i care about nothing. i forget people on purpose, i push things and people away, i keep my life empty on purpose. there's nothing here. i don't know what the fuck i'm doing trying to write a book, cause of course that's really what i'm doing whether i call it that or not, i've convinced me that my thoughts are coherent and relevant and that i can create something structured and introspective something revolutionary that people will read and admire because it's a whole new way of looking at things. when really it's just the emptiness of me. the wholeness comes from other people. i myself am empty. the people who love me either love me because they have to or love me because they don't know that i am empty. I know enough about enough that i can fool people by talking to them into thinking that there's substance to me. josh fell in love with me maybe when there was still something to me, when i was eighteen years old and we both thought there was something great inside me. the something great is inside him. i did great writing when i was with him, when i loved him. he did nothing, mourned his inabilities, complained about lack of equipment. now i've left and he's got a studio built and he's found the something great. i'm here working yet another bank job acting as though this stupid option of promotion is actually important, fuelling myself with the daily gossip of work, not existing outside of the new accounts desk. there's nothing left here anymore except jealousy. my mother will die proud of her two children because she doesn't understand that we're both empty, him because he never learned to care about finding the something great, me because i'm consumed with it and can never have it. at least he isn't cursed with the hope i have, that things will come together and i'll finish college and work with languages and write in my spare time and become truly intelligent instead of just fooling people. i don't even think i could go back and write a short story like the ones I wrote even last autumn; i'm completely different as a person, even emptier than i was then. my whole life in california is empty. i do nothing on the weekends except sit around and read and write and when i tell people that's what i do on the weekends they think i'm an exceptional bore. if i had somebody to play video games or go bowling with or go see plays or movies it might be different. but i look for other people to make me not empty and that's the fool in me. with josh i didn't feel this way. i felt interesting, full, alive, even if we were at each other's throats all the time. now he's into bicycling and hiking. i didn't feel as though there were an end to the things i could say, that the possible conversation inside me was like knots on a string and once the last one popped through my throat that was it, there was nothing more to me, i expire, i am finite. even this entry is boring. i don't even have the talent to express my worthlessness creatively.
egad, D is driving me nuts, T is driving me nuts, new accounts in Riv is driving me nuts, everyone calling me four times a day asking for this and that and wanting me to create a file for this and suddenly i'm a bloody expert BAH who needs it! The only one NOT driving me nuts, surprisingly, is C. We've been pretty united this week - we went to Costco at lunch together today, and we sat round and talked last night for an hour or so. I want to be friends with her desperately. Usually the haze of hatred I feel for her when I have to listen to her flirting with him all week clouds this fact. Monday he'll be back in the office and I won't be able to talk affectionately about her anymore. I entirely understand that it's all a matter of my perception. You are currently witnessing the rare Intellectual Jenny, being all logical and admitting to the reasonable intertwining of things. Come Monday the three straight days of 'How was your trip? Did you miss me? Did you meet any hot Australian girls?' will commence and I'll barely be able to speak through depression, so be forewarned.

Feeling more and more like I'm floundering along without any real plan. Not entirely sure what I'm doing. I'm writing but I feel like nothing's really being revealed, nothing's becoming clearer. I make myself write anyhow because it's certain nothing will come of it if I don't, but I feel like I'm walking in the dark. I've lost touch with Maritza, haven't spoken to Lindsay in a while, putting off writing jim (again), keep meaning to write/call Lalo but never do...let the pity party begin, I suppose. Going to go see what i can do with the trusty-yet-ratty Purple Spiral Bound Notebook.

22 April 2004

C tells me that no less than 5 (five) people are relieved that D is moving down the river. S, C's good friend at Riverside, thinks she is, I quote, a 'dumbass'. How sad. And there is no consolation sandwich in the works for Jenny (though C, in repayment for babysitting her 3 kids while she went to a Weight Watchers meeting this eve, did buy me a glorious barbecued chicken sandwich on wheat bread) because apparently, according to T and C, I am now the 'prime candidate' to take D's position. Great galloping Christ, when will it end? Rosemary gets fired and they schlumpf me in her chair. Now D is leaving and I'm meant to be thrown into the back of the office with B, office manager, ex-cop, lending officer, and purveyor of greatly bad jokes, to learn lending, about which I know precisely NOTHING? Ai, ai. Everyone will be goddamned calling me by D's name for the rest of my life, because he, slacker that he is, seems resolved to never change any of the office telephones EVER AGAIN. It's nearly $3 more per hour. I could buy every single goddamned Steven-Wilson-related-release my heart ever dreamed of. But do I want to be a banker for the rest of my life? I was hired as a teller. That lasted a month. Then new accounts. That's been six months. Now the lending services. That'll last until I either move a decimal too far to the left (as, apparently, D has done several times) and get myself fired, or we open up a new branch and I get nominated for assistant operations officer. I'm out here to bloody well go to college. I'm a writer, remember? Going to school for stupid writing. Going to be a translator, living on meagre sums, renting a room from Patrice until I'm 35, listening to her tell me how I should've earned a degree in astrophysics.

Ai, whatever. I'm just cranky 'cause I'm feeling slightly violated. In future, it'd go well appreciated if the phrase 'ok, I'm putting the speculum in now' was uttered BEFORE the speculum was actually IN. Thankfully, am not diabetic, for all who were truly concerned: sugar a bit high, yes, but not full-blown diabetes. Gave me a derm referral for the eczema-ish thing and a nice round of antibiotics for the greenies. Will be back to normal by tomorrow.

In honour of the CD List Guy, who expressed interest in joining my travelling sea monkey circus, and in a postscript asked me if I was a fan of They Might Be Giants:
istanbul was constantinople
now it's istanbul not constantinople
so if you've a date in constantinople
she'll be waiting in istanbul
Ya, TMBG's ok i surpose, but they've nothing on the Residents, eh.

21 April 2004

D resigned today. She's wicked unhappy (mostly because of C, or so G tells me) and is leaving. I am now the only new accounts. Perhaps they will buy me a consolation sandwich. Ai, with pepperoncinis, please!!

Ate some strawberry ice cream with bananas and strawberries and caramel and white chocolate chips in it today (then went and worked out, ya).

Called Dr. Shah; am no further enlightened about the state of my own health than I was yesterday.

Whilst I was working out two women were jabbering in Spanish next to me: 'Como se llama?' 'Amy Grant?', referring to the song currently playing. Then one turned to me and asked, 'Do you know her name, the one who is singing?' Sadly, I did - and it was Taylor Dayne, singing 'Tell It To My Heart'.

I will miss D. It's a shame that she's dumb as dirt with regard to bank work, because she's got a heart of gold and is truly one of the most selfless, generous people I've ever met. It's going to be bad once she leaves - only one new accounts, plus G has strongly suggested to me that she will not be employed there much longer, and a bunch of flippin' idiots in the Riverside branch. Egad. Today there was a major cash management crisis concerning a payroll batch that was debited from a customer's account and then mysteriously disappeared, the use of an incorrect ACH standard entry class code, a Fedline tape that had not been cleared in what seemed like months by V who handles all the uploading, a very unhappy customer who called the operations officer of Riverside several unsavory names, and a mad, mad scramble to get everything done before the ACH cutoff (3:00 pm). In addition I went on another cash management call today with T, which was brilliant and fantastical. And in addition to that, D opened 6 TCDs today and when uploading them onto the system entered the account number in the 'dollar amount' field, giving them all balances of well over $200,000 when they were each for approximately $6,000, which mistake I promptly fixed and was then grilled about by C, who was in, in her own words, a 'fucked' mood from the get-go today. T, who walks around singing - crooning - 'You Don't Bring Me Flowers' and frantically picking his teeth with the tooth machine like it's the end of the motherfucking world, is apparently getting on her nerves.

And, last but not least, a snippet of my conversation with Mr. T today:
me: 'Have you been out for some major shopping with your new debit card?'
he: 'Oh, heavens no, this is a business card, not to be used for frivolous things, like taking you to dinner!'
Oh, Mr. T, you're simply gorgeous, but the fact that you have a penis and that 'penis' is indeed on my list of things to look for in a man hardly compensates for the fact that you are an (albeit lovable) anal-retentive prick.

20 April 2004

And since the PT and SWHQ sites are neither of them releasing any information about Steven Wilson with regard to the upcoming PT record, tour dates, the accompanying maybefilm, or his underpants, I will now just post a big old photo of his foot. Bare, of course, as he plays all his live shows barefoot now, and one day I will use that to my supreme advantage.

It was Ramadan. A, owner of a Corona restaurant & one of our customers, came in.
J asked him: 'How are you today A?'
He replied: 'Hungry.'

A's Muslim, married to a Christian woman, raising kids Christian. Ostensibly he was just feeling existentially lonely. But still that answer really bugged me...so much so that Ramadan was 27th Oct through 25th Nov of last year, and yet I still think of this occurrence often. The lack of humility while doing something so incredibly humble as fasting astounded - continues to astound - me.
i wish i liked tuna
waaaaaaaaaaa jim you've been looking at the page! you rock my caspbah! the counter is up to 11!

alright, i swear to never mention the stoopid mock sex pistols counter again.
worked out hardcore and ate only a nominal quantity of doritos today, plus a good salad lunch. the step aerobics instructor is also from pennsylvania, wilkes-barre to be exact. other side o' the state from me, but lovely nonetheless. got a call from dr. shah's office, they've my blood results and would like me to make an appointment. i've already got an appointment, for thursday 4/22, the dreaded day of pap. this can only mean that something is wrong with my blood work which would warrant another appointment on top of this one. of all the hideous things that could be wrong with me, three are strong possibilities: high cholesterol, high blood pressure, and diabetes, the only three things i was bloody tested for. oh please please please, not with the diabetes, but as my dad is diabetic, it's probably the strongest possibility. Uncle Paul had diabetes and he had both his legs chopped off and was covered in sores. adding to my already sad bill of health consisting of a bout of mild eczema on the back, and some odd-looking green discharge from...yeah. right about there. not yeast, not chlamydia (at least Josh had better hope not), just some funky undiagnosable women's plague. having a vagina is awesome, it's like the cushion in the couch that shit always falls under and gets lost. it's the (some might say) central part of our anatomy and yet most of us know absolutely nothing about it, including what it does from day to day, or how it amuses itself while we're sleeping.

eck.

19 April 2004

yeah, i realise that's probably just about the most UN-punk page counter ever, but i'm all about irony. keep in mind that 95% of the hits on this page are me and myself, scrutinizing our writing. Scrutinizing!
crap day. NO energy whatever. monstrously depressed. had blood drawn for the exam on thursday, left me a bit woozy. i'm rather squeamish. ate taco bell for lunch, which i definitely should not have eaten, as i now feel about three hundred pounds heavier. ate crap over the weekend too and am generally ashamed of myself. am going to steam some squash this eve to make up for it.
girl at gym: 'are you seeing results?'
me: 'i'm seeing results, i don't know if everybody else is!'
sidenote: ya, the results'd be a bit better if i hadn't consumed three pounds of pure unadulterated quivering FAT for my afternoon meal. bloody fucking hell.

new accounts in Riverside is absolutely vile to me now that it's been confirmed I'm smarter and better at her job than she is. going back to Riverside week commencing 26th april (when he returns) to try and get their hideously unorganised new accounts somewhat organised. today is my grandmother's birthday, and D's. today I received an Easter card today from my grandmother with the slogan 'Rejoice in the Lord' on the front. god, but she knows me well. yes, in case you weren't paying attention, that's EASTER, the holiday that fell eight days ago, the one I don't even CELEBRATE. 's ok, used to being passed by by my mother's hideous family. it's a miracle she remembers me at all - no, that's not senility or old age, as she's still mentally fit as a whip: it's actually that she occasionally does forget i exist. and who could blame her? i'm rather nondescript. i spent about an hour sitting in the Unilab waiting room before getting the blood drawn and i swear i could've spent the whole day there, watching people's shoes, mothers talking to their children, women with real bodies and weird pants, the white nurses trying to speak Spanish, the door creaking, everyone's answers to 'have you had anything to eat or drink today?'. had a rather good and heartening talk with Josh today during which he told me to hold my chin high against the Riverside new accounts and use my intelligence as leverage. still in a crap mood, though. i'm depressed and lonely. and this not-a-book-writing thing, well, it's just heartbreaking. it's really just all about getting in touch with the fact that i still don't really like myself very much.

17 April 2004

Josh just called and we talked for 24 minutes and 24 seconds. Apparently Adam has begun to go to Ozzy's (some dive bar in West View) and do karaoke on a fairly regular basis. Josh gave a running commentary of Adam's version of 'Welcome to the Jungle' that, coupled with the mental image of Adam snapping his fingers and singing 'sha-na-na-na-na-na-na-na-na-na-na-na-na-knees! knees!' in slow motion in a Frank Zappa voice, had me cackling (so loud in fact that Patrice is probably wondering what the hell is happening down here), even more than the schmucks on yahoo personals. I told him I'd been surfing that site for about an hour and was glad he called and snapped me back to reality. He sounded rather discomfited by my being on a matchmaker site (or perhaps that was just my overwhelming sense of wishful thinking kicking in) and revealed that Adam, Rush, and Sean (all his roommates) had signed up for match.com and had all posted profiles which were utterly retarded. I expressed my surprise, noting that I had always had a hard time keeping my desire at bay when Adam was in the room. Josh revealed that were his prostate not bruised from a day of bicycling he would have a go with Adam at this very second, even though he butchered 'Dyna Moe Humm' and from all reports his version of 'Kashmir' was even worse than the late-1990's Jimmy Page/Puff Daddy remake. A good time was had by all. I told him about my upcoming Pap smear. He said he hopes it works out for me. I replied that I'm quite optimistic. We're a couple of retards. He told me he loves me.

I swear I will do whatever I can to obtain a photo of Adam and post it here so that the world may revel in his hideous hair, slightly bad teeth, poor posture, lovable nature, and overall lack of singing talent.

Quote from Adam: 'She's got bad enzymes!'
Another quote from Adam: 'Dude, I do a mad Robert Plant!' (sadly...no, ladies, no)
I'm entirely unsure which is worse, the one who (seriously) described himself as being 'semi-romantic', or the one who (only-slightly-less-seriously) listed 'dead babies' as one of his interests.

and I quote: 'I'm totally naked sometimes. I'm a land mammal yet am water soluable'. ai, ai...

I'm looking at a photo of a guy with red hair wearing a Crass shirt. Wahooooo, it's still early!

and oh me, the heart-stilling power of mutton chops. er...no, I'm actually serious about that one!!

Alright, I've revised my policy on posting my photos. I need to borrow me a digital camera as soon as is reasonable so I can post a profile wearing nothing but my ill-fitting pyjama camisole and a deliciously creepy smile. Or perhaps a pensive intelligent smile. I also need to find as many photos of Josh and I together in compromising and/or insufferably romantic positions, and post all of these as well, magnified 200%.

If you 'live by' a quote from R. W. Emerson, at least have the courtesy to spell his fucking last name correctly.

No shirt, farmer's tan, nipples like drainstoppers, half-naked in front of the family piano, a slightly disgruntled facial expression as though receiving a suppository, looks vaguely like the guy from the Judybats, 'I like foreplay'. Apparently!
Quote of the century: 'And even though I've never kissed a girl, I'm sure that's good too'. (this gentleman is 23 years old)
oh yes, and the root vegetables. Well, I bought potatoes, two types of squash, asparagus, and broccoli, and of those I believe only potato is actually a root vegetable, but eh. A grand array of steamable legumes all the same. Bought four shirts, two of which are mysteriously ill-fitting, necessitating another drive to Temecula tomorrow. Bought these four shirts with him in mind. Is that not completely and entirely pathetic? I'm so, so sorry you're reading this...
having a grand spankin' time perusing the yahoo singles pages, learning just how many men there are who think themselves capable of selling themselves to the opposite sex through the written word yet spell the word interesting 'entresting' and the word you're 'your' and leave the 'g' off the end of present participles in English (goin, doin, makin) and type 'u' instead of 'you' and generally have NO FUCKING GRASP AT ALL of homophones.

If u r two lasy to spell write and type the hole word 'you' than i dont wanna meat u.

ANYHOW - feeling utterly pathetic and strangely intrigued at once. just wanted to drop in and let the world know that somewhere in Riverside there is a man who is seeking a 'mentally and physically attractive Christian woman that fears God'. The scariest part about this is that there are probably some people that might read that sentence, nod their heads affirmatively, and go 'why's that so weird?' He looks kinda like Mr. T. No, not my Mr. T, doll that he is (called me at Riverside yesterday, just to talk I think) - 'pity da fool' Mr. T!

I've found me three 'potential matches' so far, the entirety of the 'match' being based on the fact that they can form complete sentences. One is nearly hideous, one is average, and one is FINE - but they all can spell. That will matter later on, when we're making babies. However, I have NO INTENTION WHATSOEVER (what's with all the annoying random capitalisation eh?) of posting a photo of myself where the world-at-large can view it, so in actuality none of these matches will ever come to fruition. The dating industry is so phantastical. As in, 'of phantasy'.

'I'm a Christian who attends services more than once a week...but I'm absolutely NOT POLITICAL.'

Yeah. RIGHT. Like I said. PHANTASY.

mmm...delicious rare rainy day...wearing my Miranda Sex Garden tshirt...going to drive to Temecula for some shopping and then go to Ralph's and purchase a large quantity of root vegetables.

talk soon...

16 April 2004

He, having friends in Sydney, has gone to Australia for this past week, and will be gone all next week besides. Wednesday I went to Riverside to train some of the staff in cash management, which was disastrous. One was twenty minutes late, the second hates me, and the third snickered with the second behind my back about whoknowswhat. It was total crap, but apparently the operations officer there likes me, for she invited me back today, all day, to sit new accounts, and today she invited me to come back week-after-next to help out for a few days (read that: indefinitely). NA#1 is who I worked with today, as NA#2, former merchant teller and rather inept new accounts, had to run a teller drawer. I was busy - busy, not Corona fake-busy - all day long, and I feel like I didn't even make a dent in the work that had to be done. So I am slated to go back, with T's approval, the very week he gets back from the land of Oz. How delightful...{steeples fingers, cackles wildly} And R, the very goodlooking (quite married) accountant, came into the lunch room and asked me where I was from, and we had a wonderful conversation about Pennsylvania and Montreal and speaking French and Riverside and Corona and agriculture and UCR and South Dakota and Mt. Rushmore and RCC and me becoming a translator. I kept thinking he might leave and he kept shifting his weight and staying and asking me more. I actually held someone's attention?! And another R, the new controller, and I had a devious conversation about used car lots. And J, a loan officer, approached me with a conversation about houses and dairy farms and cookie-cutter model homes and how it's possible to get lost in a modern subdivision because all the homes look the same. I talked to more people than I thought possible today! Riverside actually seems to be broken into two main groups - people who act like adults and people who act like teenagers. Some skirt the line, like NA#1 who is professional but sometimes excludes me, and Y, who jokes and laughs with the teenagers but is very sweet. Most of the lending staff act like adults. S, C's friend, is quite borderline teenager. V, who can actually be quite nice and charming, nonetheless jokes and laughs and is very exclusive with NA#2, who, as I noted before, hates me. She threw me daggers when she saw me in her seat this morning and wouldn't even look me in the eye the rest of the day - this from a girl who calls me three times a day laughing and giggling sycophantically while asking for help on how to add someone to an account. The operator, who we'll call O, is a teenager. He is friends with S and her boyfriend but otherwise seems generally to be a hermit. It's an interesting dynamic. Different than Corona, because there's a lot more staff and the office is bigger so there's not one particular person (like C) who sets the tone for the whole office. Everyone is free to be themselves. I had meaningful conversations today that I never would have had in Corona, because people saw fit to approach me and talk to me as though I am a separate entity. I love Corona but I don't feel that way there, generally because of C.

and very strange happenings before he went to see the wizard...D asked me, in front of C (during yet another get-Jenny-a-man session) whether I wouldn't 'go for' him. Him. I blushed to the toes. 'He's single!' D cried. 'And?' I said desperately trying to keep cool and obviously failing. 'What, you don't like him?' C asked, dead-serious. More with the blushing. Ai, please please please let her have gotten the hint, please. I have to do something while we're working in the same office. Unfortunately the president/CEO works in an office just across the hall from his cove, so any stunts involving baked goods, whispered nothings and my own panties are quite very much ruled out. Plan B, then...

10 April 2004

'Why do dinosaurs have such large and worryingly sensual thighs when you draw them without wrinkles?' (Mark Haddon)

going to go purchase this book now...

'A chocolate chip cookie, he revealed, is 700 per cent bigger than in 1982' (Guardian)

08 April 2004

horrible day.

'are you qualified to give a urine sample?'
and yeeees, i will whip out the Photoshop tomorrow and make cool little thumbnails for my obsessive photos of Steven Wilson and Big Daddy Wiz. I really wanna do it NOW (i'm in hyper-creative mode after having written round 8 pages straight of stuff that makes me feel really happy) but it's 12:38 am and that's just retarded. I do have an office job you know. Somewhere out there is a Dominicana nicknamed Bebe who has come EVERY SINGLE DAY since she opened her safe deposit box to access it, and who takes at least twenty minutes at a time, and then wants meticulous change for a $100 bill which only I can retrieve from the teller for her, and wants to discuss her achiness, and calls me Jennifer on top of it all. Bebe will want me to be fresh and alert for her tomorrow (er, today), when she interrupts my lunch to place her safety pins into safekeeping.

07 April 2004

more:

the Real Rosemary was in the branch today, no doubt trying to sell D another beta fish as she is wont to do from time to time (D killed the first beta fish which the RR had left her upon her firing by filling its vase with water from the water cooler). She demanded her identity back from me but I managed to convince her that it was actually helping me to get into someone's pants. That RR, she's such a humanitarian.

a customer, in wearing a Rage Against The Machine shirt, just after open, 9:30 maybe. Fifty, grizzly, 300 pounds (does EVERYONE weigh 300 pounds? is that my default guessweight for people?), looks vaguely like my stepfather. not a hot sex object, to be sure. We discuss RATM briefly. I help him do random transaction stuff as a helpful new accounts should. I stand to retrieve some printouts.
he: 'How old are you?'
me: '{my age}'. (I did actually answer this question, with my real age, located above the teens but below the 30s; i can't think what possessed me to actually give him the real figure)
he: '{age}, eh? 50-year-olds have been arrested for thinking the thoughts I am right now.'
!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Moments later, D comes over and RATM-man attempts to help her change the ring tone on her cell phone (while I puked, gently so as to not offend anyone, into the new accounts wastebasket). Please note here that D is offended if you make so much as a subtle reference to a sexual innuendo, yet has been caught in flagrante delicto teasing G about 'using her mouth'. With that in mind, she, nearly as perceptive as I, makes a comment about usually having her ring set to 'vibrate'. I come up for air just in time to hear RATM-pervert make the standard joke about women and things that vibrate. Saw that one coming from early last week. Later in the day, perhaps 3:30 or so, he calls to apologise to me and D for the comment about the vibrating phone, saying he had been thinking that perhaps we may have thought it inappropriate. He absolutely never mentions the jailbait comment, which actually made my legs tremble. I accept the misplaced apology, transfer the line to D, who later confesses she'd been thinking of never speaking to him again, until he apologised. Glad she's happy and that her anxiety has been resolved. I myself work through the rest of the day with a vague feeling of filth, and a strong sense that justice has not been served. Eh, I know he's just a harmless pervert, T has vouched for him, but...blecccchh. My older-guy cutoff is round about 35, thanks, and no stepfather-lookalikes need apply. Mercifully no one thought to recommend I pursue him for the all-important end of getting Jenny laid!

although...

C: 'God, Jenny, you need laid -' (yeah, that's verbatim) ' - I'll have to speak to T about that!' T, who walks round the branch singing 'You don't bring me flowers, you don't sing me love songs' and 'Maybelline', who picks his teeth with the Tooth Artillery? Sigh...only slightly sexier.
ah! just remembered...lottery today (since xmas/newyears is on Sat this year) for who takes the friday off before xmas and who takes the friday off before new year's, and i chose new year's and D chose xmas, but she'd rather have new year's (cause she plays cards) and i'd rather have xmas (cause I'm sentimental or something) so we switched, and i told her i'd go to san francisco for xmas, and she said i could fly there for $40. stay in the youth hostel and become perpetually lost in yet another big city. give my mum a call at 5:00 am EST christmas day from the hostel just to give her a good proper christmas scare.

and Kristine (who i met on Saturday in Fullerton) was invited to a seder for last eve...i am slightly envious. though she was not planning on attending and said i could go in her place.
sorry broke the cardinal rule said the word 'BOOK' this is NOT A BOOK not not not not NOT A BOOK...! just scribblin'. in just a moment i'm off because some weird thing that i realised last night that has nothing to do with the part i'm writing now occurred to me again and it's got to be recorded

mr. T apologised to me today for having been a dick on the phone yesterday
i managed to call C a 'greasy fool'
i miss my family and I want to go to DC and have a big long conversation with Joel or maybe go back to Fullerton & talk to Jody again...
i have a character named Jody from a long time ago...a male also
listening to the prayer boat again
i'm going to get my haircut in a wave across my face so you can only see one of my eyes...i will conscript madeline for this job
will joop ever write me? her real name is julia
the story of her joop is long and convoluted and not even i can remember it
last year christmas was on a thursday and we were ALL jazzed but since she got married...to a BOB no less
jim wrote me and said 'gambatte' which i will try for 'even with these skinny arms of mine'
i'm going to the beach on christmas this year

well g'night

06 April 2004

have begun writing what will hopefully someday be a book. the RPSBN has served me well. the four records that will be indispensible during this time of creative progress:
  1. 'Polichinelle', The Prayer Boat :: There really is something special about this record. I've been listening to it nonstop, and my original impression was fairly right; it's not Jeff, it's not Coldplay, it's not ND, and it's immensely, beautifully sad. For once I have a 'new find' to share with Josh!


  2. 'Venus Isle', Eric Johnson :: EJ is so original and thoughtful. Voice melts me.


  3. 'Coma Divine', Porcupine Tree :: The old standby. I know this record so well I could probably perform it on a kazoo in its entirety, but it still does crazy things to my brain. Vive SW!


  4. 'The Power to Believe', King Crimson :: Because I have become obsessed with the song 'Eyes Wide Open', to the point where I found myself singing it to Mr. T today. Well, that's a boldfaced lie, but you comprehend, I'm sure.

And running close behind will be:
  1. 'Post', Bjork :: I always revert to this record when writing, because it flows so perfectly. My only complaint is that 'Army of Me' opens it; it's a very harsh way to open such a lovely record, it quite jolts me, so I usually skip over it, even though I like it. And I don't listen to it after the last song, either, because 'Headphones' is completely dreamy and serene and the jolting would be even worse. Bad planning, eh! But otherwise a grand record.


  2. 'Loveblows and Lovecries', No-Man :: This record screams 'It's okay to be moody! It's okay to be self-indulgent!' I love it and am glad it is back in my arms again. Now if only I had more than $2.63 in my checking account, I could procure for myself one (1) copy of 'Together We're Stranger'. Alas...

Josh has been weird lately, not having any time to talk, blah, blah, etc. Not sure about that. Am exhausted from speculating on his post-Jenny lovelife. In other grand news, he came to the branch today, and I nearly drooled on myself. I saw him approaching but I couldn't quite tell who it was coming in; it looked like a good-looking guy, so I stared. Indeed! So he opened the door and I was forced to make eye contact with him [ai, the new haircut is short...i like] and he said hello to me in that low, low voice. Then the grandest of all things occurred: I was given an opportunity to show off in front of him. A very pleasant gentleman from one of our big businesses called, needing help on cash management. He was on the teller line; I walked this Pleasant Gentleman through three ACH batch initiations, all in full earshot, laughing softly and sounding really fucking intelligent. (Seems profanity dims that somewhat. Hrm.) I was on the telephone at least a half hour, using all kinds of esoteric ACH-related terms and wielding my mouse like a stave. I was off the phone as he left, though, and tried to avoid the eye contact, but he was looking at me as he passed by, and said 'See ya later' in that same blasted voice, right into my eyes. Oy, but he's cute! And brilliant himself...perhaps I can arrange to sic him on the all-too-intimidating Mr. T (who may or may not be bionic)... [steeples fingers and cackles]

yeah, and I wrote Jim from Fugue State Press a shameful fangirl letter about Daughter! I Forbid Your Recurring Dream! which is more exciting than Proust, a few days back and I quite suspect that he, quite simply horrified by my lack of bodily control, will never write back. Bringing the tally of people to contact me via the blog and then leave me hanging at the edge of the stick to a nice even TWO (2). 'course last we spoke he was nursing a brand new idea so perhaps it's got its fangs into his writing shoulder.

And I have a PAP SMEAR on Thursday 22nd April at 11:00 sharp. Thus bringing my entire life full circle. Ne?

04 April 2004

ok, just ate some oatmeal, which seems to have the power of enabling me to do anything, for just after the oatmeal was finished I opened the cupboard in which I keep all my old notebooks and journals, and found a ratty purple spiral-bound notebook which I'd begun to keep as a journal at the end of 2000 but quit abruptly (probably reverting back to the spiral-bound legal pad, which was my first love). Anyhow, here goes with the first draft, eh!

and here is a wonderous treat from the aforementioned notebook; i really can't explain any of this and am at pains to even remember what I was doing at the time this was written. All I know is Joop from Maine was in town, and we were doing some very heavy drugs on a Thursday.


I am like to 4% of the population.
14 december 2000 - later on
I HATE JULIA G. GALLAGHER
Julia Garoline Gallagher
Tazza d'Oro Highland Park
BRAD YODER
masking himself as BOND JAMES BOND
Tazza d'Oro --
I like salt and ketchup
together.
Sitting in the golden cup
and Julia tells me how she is
putting off
growing up
and learning French.
Poetry is escaped me.
We are in the land of milk and honey.
We are amid reruns from winter.
We are amid wood glass and pottery
Places without clocks make her
very nervous.
I smile,
and I to myself
begin to say goodnight.
--Gina/Rita has a heart-shaped mouth
He is wearing a harness
JUPE
What is up?
--a preposition
[wild drawings here]
my ears are burning
why?
your big toe is
not your big toe.
HOMUNCULI
1-814-393-FRAT
[turn page]
i have never been so close
i have never been so close
he questions is a human being
being wrong
all questions we float in a
dreary center
and wee all hours float by
by the end of the night he will be
calling you by a different name

he was in the room with me.
i was in his veins.
i was pumping through and i
felt it when he died.

my mother's lips weeping wickedly.
my father --
he was once not so but
i have since adopted him --
his nausea at the thought
turned him plump and green like
an avocado.
AVOCADO.

i play my own lawyer
i rise right before the sun..
ÜMLAUTS
he rubs his nose as he thinks of
what to play
i look at myself in the salt and
pepper shakers.

how beautiful we all look with
our curls resting against the wall

how wicked good i feel as i
return to myself.

how good it is that
music is a hospital

paint is dripping and
trying to distract me
the air is getting crowded and i
do so wish someone would lose
sleep over me...

i believe i mesmerise him.
and i can tell by the way he looks away
so painfully
one second too late.
[chin twitches]
his chin twitches with the glee
497
2
of singing of love as vacation

he gulps in the air and i
would think that when he tries to
digest food
he drinks in gallons of the
world around him.

i will leave this place with
ink spots all over me.

we all clutch our pens as if we
are
about to say something
that should be written instead.

there are more than 500
people in this room and
all of them are on this page.

he peeks around like an iguana,
not caring because
each word is as important as the last

my cheeks are getting hot
BOB RULES
BOB A SPORK
my ears are boiling --
i think i am nervous

plump people are mesmerised by
each other's hands on each other's hands

i thank god or someone for my
depth perception.

blessed are the meek - BROKENHEARTED -
for they shall inherit -a new heart.
               -the world
               -a closet in spain
               -do i only fall into
this trance? how do these people
stay awake
in the midst of such unconscious beauty?
all of it - all of this
makes me want to travel into my
deep deep sleep,
just to feel it all the way through,
christmas ornaments hung all year round -
someone's souls are hanging in the window
N.Y.M.
3053
evil
priestboys
CRACK
[a diagram of sorts here]
1-800-FRAT misses the N.Y.M.
i am amazed that there are still people in the world -- at all
a grand flattery
he was in the room.
i was in his veins and i
felt it when he died.

it took a long time to reach me,
like gossip,
i am always on the wrong,
long
end
of a rumour

i do not approve of singalongs
i cannot stand all of these strange words he wants
to come out of my mouth
'we could do a simple dance'
i will just imagine turning round and smiling
i will singalong on paper
no sinners needed just strong singers who draw out 's's
and drink cups of tea

[i think we were at a brad yoder show? on crack?]
In the continuing search for the exact route that I did take that day I drove to Santa Barbara, I have consulted a map, and it seems that round about Oxnard, a bit before Ventura, the 1 and the 101 converge, so that it would've been both the 1 and the 101, though on the map it is only called the 101.

In more freeway news: drove to San Juan Capistrano yesterday, which was quite lovely. I didn't get to see the mission, but I did spend five hours on Capistrano beach and did some very pleasing writing, though not on what I intended to write on, as it always turns out. Took the 91 west to the 241 south to the 133 south to the 5 south, all of which was ridiculous, especially since I paid $4 in tolls on the 241 and the 133. If I'd racked my brains a bit I would've remembered that when I went to San Diego and Tijuana with Lupe and Dad and Andrew we got there without taking any toll roads - it's the 91 west to the 55 (west?) to the 5 south, without paying nary a toll. I got all experimental coming back home and went that way, and the time was just about the same.

so I'm pleased with the writing I did, both quality and quantity, though of course none of it turned up as I planned. I spent the first two hours or so just writing about the beach and the surroundings, and that's the stuff that came out really well. Then I kind of flowed into making some notes on a {trying not to call it a story or a book} piece that I really should just start a draft for. I like all the notes I've made, and I can feel that I'm ready to start trying to put something together, but I'm quite afraid that I'll
  1. write a few pages,
  2. be unhappy with the way in which I've solidified my glorious ethereal notes and ramblings,
  3. feel as though I've locked myself into this project when it has no hope of ever being what I want it to be,
  4. abandon it.
I've been approaching the note-taking in stealth mode, kind of sneaking up and writing a bit on it while distracting that part of me that wants to scream 'Yaaaaa! She's working on a story! Oh, this is it, we haven't worked on a story in months! You'll never get it longer than a short story! You'll give up on it in a few weeks! You can't change the voice like that! We have rules to follow! Get me a donut!' But I feel like it's time to start drafting something solid, and at the same time I'm not prepared to make the move to the computer and abandon the actual longhand writing - it still feels too personal. To that end, I went to the 99¢ store and purchased a plain single-subject spiral-bound notebook, only to find, when I came home and opened it up with great anticipation and my book of notes at hand, that it is in fact a plain single-subject spiral-bound notebook FULL OF GRAPH PAPER. In my frustration I scribbled 'Can I write a book in a book full of graph paper?' on the first page, to see if I could weather the misfortune and use the book anyway, but that's all I've written in it, because that cross-hatching, while good for sine and cosine, is enough to make a writer of the written word maaaaaaaaaad.

02 April 2004

Today we - me, T, J, and G - were talking about, of all things, the effects of viagra on the male erection. I voiced my opinion. T, blushing to the toes, stated that he, when he first interviewed me, had thought I was some 'hillbilly girl from the sticks' who looked to be 'innocent', and couldn't believe I was talking out loud about hard-ons. J chimed in and said she felt I looked like a schoolmarm. For reasons she noted my black eyeglasses and 'those guys on your computer' with a shake of her head as though she just couldn't process me through her mind and that, in fact, worried her



Yup, 'those guys', evidently not earning me any points.

And a schoolmarm? Gurg...grrr....I just stared at her. Why was it necessary for her to say that? In front of everyone? G chimed in too, saying that her kids thought I was the coolest person in the world, and that I'm far from innocent and hillbilly-ish, to no avail. I nearly bit my tongue off holding back my initial impressions of her, which, because this is my flippin' blog, I am under no compulsion to do here:

'Huh, schoolmarm. At least it's not a barn I look like. At least my hips are visible. At least I'm not jealous of my husband's daughter from a previous marriage, exactly the way my own stepmother was of me when she married my father. At least I have self-control and don't whine to everyone when I've bought a $200 diet plan off an infomercial but fail to use it because I like to eat fast food. At least I don't need to be led by the hand into every task I'm asked to do because I am incapable of thinking and deciding for myself. At least at least blah blah blahrhrhblahbh...blah.'

All of which is incredibly mean and which I would never on my life repeat and which I've never ever said out loud. But it sure is what I thought. I do like her...I do...but she's got this tendency to be exceptionally judgmental of the looks and habits of others when she herself weighs 300 pounds and is mostly plain and frumpy and has quite possibly never had an original thought or idea in her life. Sorry I'm not a native of this lovely superficial state and am not as stylish as she. Sorry I come from a place that has snow in winter (as I am constantly being made to apologise for missing the snow, and for enjoying any degree of cold or rainy weather that occurs here). Sorry I don't watch American Idol every fucking night and can't come into work and discuss each contestant's fatal flaws in depth. Huh...I know T was joking, because he kept on going at it, calling Pittsburgh a hillbilly city and saying I was set to marry my cousin. That his comments were completely over-the-top let me know he wasn't serious about them. But J sat discussing my character as though she has no flaws at all, and as though I should feel guilty for who I am and what I look like, with that look on her face as though my quality of being 'different' really distressed her. I exerted a good deal of effort to both not cry and not say something out loud that I would regret, and T noticed. He came over to me and knelt down to my sitting level and apologised, nearly with tears in his eyes, and assured me that he notices that I do the work in twenty hours that most people do in forty, and that he thinks I'm brilliant, and so on. Yeah, but I look like a schoolmarm, which negates everything else about me. How could I have been blind to the fact that I look like a schoolmarm? Never mind that this woman wears tents to work...I believe all my troubles up until now have been sourced in the fact that I am utterly schoolmarmish and was somehow under the impression that my glasses were kind of sexy, my hair was pretty and smelled nice, my clothes were professional and neat and not completely ill-fitting. Alas, all has failed. Most likely this is why he has never so much as glanced in my direction. No man digs a schoolmarm. Excepting perhaps men with schoolmarm fetishes who like porn stars dressed up as schoolmarms, but that, I suspect, is neither here nor there.

And I'm also growing rapidly sick of everyone's continuous discussion about how I need a guy and I need to get laid. Every woman in the office is attached to someone except me, and so evidently there's a big crusade now to dissolve the last bastion of singleness and pair me with someone, anyone, even if it's for the sole purpose of sex. G keeps bugging me about her Non-Geek friend, J wrings her hands worriedly and says I should start going to singles bars and karaoke contests, D tells me I should go out partying with her 20-year-old ex-cheerleader perfectly-shaped daughter, even C (who couldn't care less about me) tells me I should just get myself back on the Pill and take the Corona nightlife scene by storm. Every guy that comes into the branch between the age of fifteen and fifty is assessed for my benefit; after they leave all four of these evil hawks descend on me with wiggling eyebrows, asking me what I thought. It's absolutely heinous. Don't they know I'm only interested in men I can't have? Abdul, him, Josh, the robot, etc.

schoolmarm. one of those words you stare at over and over until it ceases to be a word

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