Sunday, July 10, 2005

for my Mme.

Tonight, in the space between the wide banks of flourescent lights and the taupe streaked linoleum flooring, there was me and Mme. Grape Leaf folding warm laundry at the Thrifty Wash laundramat.

As I matched socks and she smoothed out towels, we taked about the aftermath of our relationships--the part where The Boy truly becomes The Ex. The part where there is The New Girl, who is not you.

When B found someone new, it was a mere seven days after our break-up. "This one's special," he told me.

It was the same thing he had said about me when we first met, and the thought of the analogy made me squirm.

A few weeks later, he UN-invited me to a wedding of some friends (who were his, but also mine I think, as a function of spending time with them as B's girlfriend) to take The New Girl, instead. It was this UN-invitation that finally spiraled into the conversation that ended our attempts at friendship.

It isn't so much that I now want to be with B. But I wasn't ready--perhaps still am not ready--for B to be kissing a New Girl. I thought about them going to this wedding, her sitting in my seat, chatting with my friends, eating my chicken. Eating MY chicken. And I felt... displaced. As if this New Girl was living the life that was mine. That I was only a small piece of a machine--perhaps a faulty piece--that had been replaced, fixed. The machine runs just fine without me now. And maybe it shouldn't, but the fact that the machine is humming along, it makes me mad.

Beave says that my mission this year should be to "not take things personally that aren't." In this case, this mission has been particularly hard. I was to find out later that this level of serial monogamy is really B's M.O.--that B has not been single for more than a week since high school. Yes, high school. So it isn't personal--this New Girl. Though I didn't know it at the time, I was once The New Girl, to someone else. But I have yet to fully translate this information into something less personal, less mad. I am still angry. I have dreams, sometimes, where I yell.

To the someone else before me, I wish I could apologize. I think maybe only she (and I) really know why.

At a barbeque with friends this weekend, Mme. Grape Leaf watched her Boy frolick with his New Girl in their old swimming pool.

"That's where WE used to swim and play," she said, a little sadly.
"She's eating your wedding chicken," I said.
"Yeah, she's eating my chicken."

There isn't really a happy way to end this post. There's no sense in being mad about not having what you said you didn't want in the first place. And no sense in saying that just because YOU don't want it, doesn't mean you were ready for HER to have it. The most stupid part about loving someone (or even having loved them) is that it just hardly ever makes sense at all.

posted by m at 11:11 PM

Friday, July 08, 2005

the strange lives we lead.

Had dinner with my friend TM last night at the beer garden on the roof of the New Otani in J-Town. TM may be the only person on the planet to disappear to Burkina Faso for two years, and return irrefutably and wonderfully, gay. We grilled little bits of meat and vegetables and exclaimed over our love lives and gossiped about ourselves in tragic terms for the better part of two hours.

In the meanwhile, the New Otani was hosting a bizzare rooftop kimono club fashion show. Which meant that TM--who is addicted to his Blackberry--was to partake in this exchange:

Mike: where u at?
TM: im at a japanese fashion show, drinking a 40.
Mike: i think that may be the strangest thing you've ever said.

We lead strange lives, indeed.

posted by m at 11:39 AM

Tuesday, June 14, 2005

For the record, I am simply having the BEST day. A simple convergence of small good things--like domo stickers from japan and an e-mail from an old friend--that have made me smile and made me laugh. If that's not a good day, then what is?

posted by m at 12:04 PM

Wednesday, June 08, 2005

there is a large pimple on my chin. it erupted today, in a fury. i read its manifesto; it apparently has designs on taking over my whole face. yuck.

posted by m at 6:02 PM

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

Mme. GL and I went for an early evening bike ride along the beach. She on a purple beach cruiser, and I on an equally purple 5-speed. We went for miles--it was sunny and clear and there were tons and tons of people out and about.

We slowed to watch the evening surfers in the water. Slowed for a large dog watching his owner eat a salad, with her head over his shoulder. We yelled back to each other, making summer plans, beach plans, biking plans. We watched the sun sink down.

It was all going quite well, until after a sharp curve, I heard a series of high pitched squeals and turned back to see GL up in a large planter of birds of paradise and her bike smushed up against a low wall.

"I don't think the brakes work," she giggled breathlessly.

We laughed until we gasped and our stomach muscles hurt.

posted by m at 8:38 PM

Thursday, May 26, 2005

I realize that perhaps there has been a bit too much of the overheard on this blog recently. I am unable to tell any coherent stories about my own life, which seems to daily become confoundingly more unlinear and strange.

So, overheard:

"This bandaid tastes like the month of June." (My boss' 5-year-old daughter.)

posted by m at 11:11 PM

Wednesday, May 25, 2005

From Steve Lopez's LAT column:

"Were you in love?" Ragins asked.

"I think that's what they call it," David said, and they both laughed. "I was stupid."

"Maybe being stupid and being in love are the same thing," Ragins said.

posted by m at 1:30 PM

Monday, May 23, 2005

irony, it abounds.

i just received spam offering discounts on software... to fight spam.

posted by m at 2:19 PM

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

Feeling guilty about leaving a two-hour evening meeting on organic gardening and connecting to earth and food sources to speed over to the nearest McDonalds and snarf down a cheeseburger. Because I was starving, yo.

posted by m at 1:21 PM

Monday, May 16, 2005

the nicest thing.

The nicest thing I've heard in a while:

I skipped the ice cream and puppies and dreamed of boats and awoke thinking about you.

posted by m at 3:57 PM

I was looking through some old correspondence and found this old missive to Beave about her purchase of a couch (her first):

yay yay for snarky new couch! hmmm. buying a couch. such an adult thing to do. i think have not yet purchased any piece of furniture larger than an end table. i am afraid that if i buy anything too big, i won't be able to go anywhere anymore. i'm not sure why i think this is true. odd.

And it struck me how in these terms being in a committed relationship was almost exactly like buying a couch. Only bigger. So instead of a failed long-term relationship, I could have had furniture. Hrmph.

posted by m at 3:39 PM

Thursday, May 12, 2005

This decision, it has been made. The boy and I will not be friends, after all.

I knew it was (b). Sometimes we deny the knowing in our hearts with the hopes in our heads.

Mostly I'm relieved to have the question answered. The not knowing, the twisted around hoping, has been exhausting. I feel wrung out. Ready. For. Nap.

posted by m at 11:31 PM

Sunday, May 08, 2005

the upside of alone-ness.

I find that single life is not without perks. Among the joys: watching the entire first season of the West Wing over the course of hours, without interruption--no complaining, no snarky commentary, no whining. This is the upside of alone-ness.

posted by m at 8:06 PM

Friday, May 06, 2005

More tea, please.

Mme. Grape Leaf, my roommate, is also now trying for a post-breakup friendship, with her boy. They have many things to disagree about, but the list of things on which they can nod heads is longer than perhaps they know. Among them: That driving wears on the soul, and that what weary souls really require is more green tea.


"I'm not feeling well today," said the boy.
"Why is that?" asked Mme. Grape Leaf.
"I've been doing too much driving around lately," he said. Thoughtful pause. "It's bad, you know, for the soul."
Mme. Grape Leaf nodded. "You should drink more green tea," she said gravely.
"Yeah, I should," he agreed.

posted by m at 3:45 PM

Tuesday, May 03, 2005

Next, the inevitable question: do we stay friends?

Now, the boy and I weren't friends before he became my boy. In fact, we met on a camping trip with mutual friends, and by the second night of the camp out, were making out. Furiously. Kissing first, romance later.

I think I do want to be friends with the boy. But does he want to be friends with me? He says he does, but I feel unsure about his motivation. He's been saying the right things, and doing all the wrong things. In fact, based on his behavior, he's been a downright jerk. But, as my amazing brother (whom I certainly do not give enough credit) said: people behave like jerks for all kinds of reasons. Out of hurt, or confusion, or to avoid being vulnerable, etc.

But how do I know?

Here are what I see as the possiblities:
(a) He does sincerely want to be friends, but is acting jerky to cover hurt, and to deal.
(b) He kind of wants to be friends, but mostly sees me as someone to hang out with, until he finds the next girl.

I hope it's (a), but I suspect it's (b).

posted by m at 11:16 PM

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