But You Still Love My Naggin’ Ass

I am the woman who would put this on her man’s dash.

I am also the woman who will cook him lemon chicken with rosemary in red high heels, and might I add that they may not come off throughout the night, if you know what I mean. But I am also a woman who needs things to get done. I like reminders.

These are the top five reasons I am an absolute f*&%$#@* nag.

  1. It’s innate, my Mama did it, sister did it, and my entire childhood was polluted with naggerific tendencies. It’s not an excuse, it’s just why.
  2. I want the best for you baby, for us, don’t you see it?
  3. Perhaps because I’ve only ever had experiences with people in which I have to nag or nothing will ever get done.
  4. I’m a mother and that came as a package deal.
  5. And finally, because it’s one of the few things I can do that will incite an immediate reaction. I like immediate reactions.

I’m going to generalize here, which I don’t like to do—but for the sake of the topic, I don’t mean everyone, but some and possibly even most.

What’s the worst thing a woman can do you ask? I answer. Nag. Yes, we know it is annoying, and I can even venture to say, until we nag (a repeatedly whiny asking over and over of the same thing)— or get louder, you’re generally going to ignore us until it gets… urgent for you. 

It’s like something else large has to be at stake. I like things at stake.

I feel like there’s this misconception, this misconception that a woman’s perfect man needs to be half-naked washing dishes. I’m here to tell you, as desirable as that might be, that isn’t what (and if I can speak for the women that I know) we want.

I, coupled with the few power women spoke on THIS topic all too recently, and it all falls in line with what I’ve always known.

Nagging has more to do with feeling alone with regards to responsibility, while a significant other should  share the heaviness of my load. Teamwork, go teamwork. Nagging has more to do with attention span, or lack thereof, and acknowledging when something has been asked, (even in a sensual way) and still no concerted efforts have been made.

I can remember the feeling of utter helplessness, the hindrance. The resentment and frustration, like I’m gonna “crawl up the wallside,” because I’ve asked and been disregarded for things that are (at the top of my list as) less important—ie: workouts, playing basketball, drinking beer, watching Lakers or Raiders, or my own personal favorite—feet kicked up in the lazy chair.

I want my feet kicked up in the lazy chair? But what am I doing instead? Refilling the puppy bowl, helping revamp his personal statement or CV, sorting laundry yet again, matching up his missing socks, replacing the toilet tissue and the paper towels back on the roll—because none of y’all see that sh*t is empty. All I’d like is for a man who notices things, acknowledges what I’ve said, and is present in the relationship he is in.

Since I’m currently single, I stand to warn a potential that, yes, I nag—with the most tender care and in the most yielding  and loving way possible. I nag.

Don’t worry, I use positive reinforcement, too. Very positive. I like positive.

What about you?

Picture credit: Jumbo post-it note
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If I Would Have Known That Inviting You Into My Bedroom Would Make You Turn Down The Invitation To All Of My Other Rooms I Would Have Never Been So Hospitable

I started writing on this site for a few reasons, but mainly to share. Sharing has a way of coming around full circle—but not always in the way one might expect. This is nonfiction so as a preamble I tell my friends and family that they might all be written about, although I never use names unless I’ve made them up. So, now, after having lost two people I cared about due to the content of my blog, I’ve decided to write even more personal shit. Ta-daa.

Topic of discussion today is sleeping with a man/woman too soon, which has been written and re-written, but probably not as ridiculously. I feel like the Salesperson that indubitably gets sold, but here go I:

The courting process is built on assumptions. ASSumptions that change with conversation and habits. I’m a woman, and generally, we are creatures of habit, but that can be said for some men as well. If I go out on a date with a person, I’m immediately wrestling with ASSumptions, because we use them to make good decisions about strangers. So, if the man I’m on a date with keeps darting his eyes across the room and not making good eye contact, he either has a girlfriend that’s a high profile detective, or he’s trying to see who will witness him killing me. I’m going to assume my ass to the bathroom and never return.

The same applies to the habits that form if you were to make it out of that date alive, deeming him an ok guy. Next you have the text messages. Now, I’m all for text messages, but a lot can be said about text tone, and so much more about a person that picks up the phone and uhh, calls me. It’s damn near like receiving snail mail, now-a-days. Score! But secondly, and more seriously what we are learning about in between this time, is if we can build trust in a person or not. This is synched with the building of memories. We are finding out what a future (if there is any) will be like with this person, and we are building rapport. This is why sharing about one’s past or talking about childhood at any point is important to friendships. Building on those foundations—just as important to relationships. Or standby to get separated into a box marked, “for now.”

Jozen Cummings of Until I Get Married wrote about this very topic a few weeks back and said “If you sleep with a woman too soon, and you suck, she will leave you. Wait for her to fall for you emotionally first, then deliver the sub-par performance you’re capable of.” So real.

But from a woman’s perspective, and only because my besties and I were speaking on this very situation… if we like you and you suck in bed, we’ll try again, and sometimes even again, just to make sure it wasn’t something we could’ve worked with. All of whom shall remain nameless (yes first hand my friends and I have vouched for these shenanigans) men have sex for thrill, for the happy end, for the fact of doing it. Sometimes they’re really into you, sometimes not so much. Women? We have sex, mostly (not always, but definitely mostly) for love. We want it to go somewhere. Maybe not to the moonlight and back, but we want it to go somewhere. 

“Men, they jump for money. Women, for love.”

Man On A Ledge, Movie 2012

What I said it! Women are emotional beings. I mean occasionally you get the girl who has conditioned herself to separate the two—lust, love. But even in doing so, a woman is a liar if she says to herself that she wasn’t hoping for that good guy afterwards. We ALL are. Get that fellas? All of us are still counting on you, so no this is not a male bashing party.

So when is the right time, you ask?

Ah, we can go into vibe, conversation, I’d usually measure for commonality. Discussing value can go on and on… every situation was different. A guy friend of mine said he’d slept with a girl after a drunken night, a stranger, and said that afterwards—that awkwardnesss, he felt her embarrassment, for her. He said when he woke all he could think of when he looked at her was, and in his exact words:

“I don’t think I would like to do that ever again with you.”

Another of my friends has trouble with caring at all emotionally thereafter. She said her proof is in the days to come. My sister married her high school sweet tart, also the father of her children—and still to this day will claim she wasn’t pregnant with her first child when she rushed to the altar. I slept with a guy for a year and a half and kept telling my friends he was “a one night stand.” Eventually, my bestie said to me, “it’s been a very loooooooong night then, dontcha think?” I didn’t leave him because he didn’t commit to me, I stopped calling him because he wasn’t honest with himself or his feelings.

I’m saying all of that to say this: The theory is you have to kiss a few frogs. Or, err &*%#. Which is personally frightening for me since my emotions aren’t controlled by anything physically (only), but rather uncontrolled when taken into oblong loops and upside down dances. I find that when taking chances, my best judgments elude me. Especially in moments like these:

“I respect you,” he murmured. “and your views. I think of you as an equal. I respect your brains, and all those big words you like to use. But I also want to rip your clothes off and have sex with you until you scream and cry and see God.”
—Lisa Kleypas, Smooth Talking Stranger

The point I want to make is that it isn’t the sex on the first, second, or thirty-ninth date that matters. It’s the intimacy in the moments that develop far before that. The part that keeps your thoughts twirling, even after whatever excuse isn’t given. Even after it’s all lost and over and you know you knew better, but you didn’t do any better because you knew too much better. The part you maybe should’ve fought for, but pride—she got in the way, and then when she didn’t it was too late. The part that’s shy when approached now, fumbles, foibles. The part that doesn’t understand why it crumbles so quickly, wait a year—no bueno. Wait weeks, months, days, hours, give each other raunchy looks across karaoke bars. Doesn’t matter, much, the outcome has all been the same when measured against others’ experiences. I’ve asked men, women—randomly—strangers, friends. When is it a good time to invite a man into your bedroom, with the hopes that he doesn’t turn down the invitation to all of your other rooms? A bust. It’s all subjective.

I’ve heard the typical, ‘a person looses interest, when it wanes, and if they do it wasn’t meant anyway.’ I’ve heard as long as you know their parents’ last names, I’ve heard that if you hope enough, fairy tales come true. I’m waiting on the latter. Well, first the tiff, then the kiss:

“I was just thinking if the sex with you is one-tenth as fun as arguing with you. I’ll be one happy bastard.”
“You’ll never find out. You——–”
He kissed me.
—Lisa Kleypas, Smooth Talking Stranger

What classifies the Good Girls from the Bad Girls, really? The ones whose partners can be counted on one hand? Love might have me mistaken, but I can rest assured I’ve never slept with anyone I couldn’t see myself with permanently—not planning showers or picking out kitchen tiles, but I’ll admit, I am a force of romanticized nature. Is it ruining me? Us all?

“For women especially, virginity has become the easy answer—the morality quick fix. You can be vapid, stupid, and unethical, but so long as you’ve never had sex, you’re a “good” (i.e. “moral”) girl and therefore worthy of praise.”

—Jessica Valenti, The purity Myth: How America’s Obsession with Virginity is Hurting Young Women

Yes, there’s the treasure idea. The “kept” woman, but at what point does it start to matter less about how fast a person jumps in the sack with another person, and more about the two people individually and how they work together? More about the way they trust each other, and understand each other. What about the married people I asked that both said “you never really know your husband/wife anyway, but we just keep trying?” What about the couple I asked that’s been married eight years and they both (without consulting each other) said “we make each other the best versions of ourselves” Or the homeboy who said he would never still be with his girl if the sex wasn’t sOoO good? Or the girl I went to undergrad school with, who said she always sleeps with a man the first night and it’s never not become a relationship.

Or sometimes I wonder if I can’t always do better than what’s in front of me? Is it all just a ploy? Drake said “all those other men were practice.” y’know?  My best girl and I fought over the double standard: that a womanizer is whatever, but if a female has three partners she’s a, what’s that called now, “ratchet?” I keep hearing it.

I’ll put it this way, for me:

“Sex isn’t good unless it means something. It doesn’t necessarily need to mean “love” and it doesn’t necessarily need to happen in a relationship, but it does need to mean intimacy and connection…There exists a very fine line between being sexually liberated and being sexually used.”
—Laura Sessions Stepp, Unhooked

There’s tons more to dating than sex, but sex is the part that makes the difference in loopy or comatose. A little turned around, or head across arm on the steering wheel. A little flutterbye in the tummylovely, or I swallowed a sick whale flapping in there.

Ah, lesson learned.

illustrator weheartit, quote from yours truly.

Bystanders May Be Written Into My Stories

Let me tell you what happened to me not too long ago.

I was not officially dating this guy, but we’d met, flirted. We used to party at the same places and it was convenient. He wasn’t my “type” per se, but his demeanor matched a balance between protective and nonchalant the way I’d never seen anyone capture before. Often, I didn’t know if he was talking to me in this low reassuring tone because he was trying to sound sexy, or if he was just trying to sound sexy, good times.

What I found most intriguing about him were the moments when he’d asked me about things I was certain he didn’t give a hot good shit about. He’d ask me about school and I’d explain to him how it was a hybrid program and I could “do the lot of it online”—meeting up with mentors periodically—skype, email, it was all very web savvy. I’d gone into how often I’d meet with mentors and mentees sometimes via phone conversations or coffee shops or places like Writers at Work—but my residencies were twice a year. Then he’d ask a question like “So what time do you have to be at school on Monday?” And I would just shake my head. He was trying. I found myself in his company because he made wide enough attempts. He showed interest in me by being interested in my writing.

We did talk though. His mom was sick from something he hadn’t mentioned so he was looking after her, and he had some random family member staying at his apartment because he simply “had to help him out.” I thought I’d question why he had to, but a similar situation came up between a friend of mine and I before, and when I asked said friend, he’d told me that even if he were married with kids—if this person needed a place to stay, that a place with him (no matter the situation he was in) was what he’d get. I figured this was the case as well.

Once upon a time we went to a tavern that played nineties music and had an overhead projector that displayed a burning fire. Nice enough. After small talk I’d ordered a dietish vodka mix and he’d ordered a long island. I thought I’d ask more personal questions. There’s nothing like spending time with someone where I have to spruce up the level of conversation by asking things I normally wouldn’t ask, but I do so anyway because I’m bored as all good heavens. Like my old best friend and I used to say “If nothing else please just be, interesting.”

So I go, “You believe in abortion?”

He had one leg over the bench and he was slumped over facing me, full attention. We were sitting a few feet apart and his head flopped back and forth in a horizontal motion. He stirred in his seat, and I could see him squeeze his folded hands together. I knew his answer.

It was then time for him to ask me a question back or provide some commentary, this was how rapport building worked. Again, his lack of input eeked.

“What about gay marriage?” I offered. I wished I’d phrased it as same-sex marriage as soon as it came out.

He fiddled about and took his fist into his other hand socking it together and said “Nawww I ‘on’t think two men should be gettin’ married.”

His face had some sort of dejected upturn like he was an ogre and I’d ventured into his swamp. I finished my diet whatever wishing it had more Vodka, and leaned over to him in the closest and quickest whisper I’ve ever given a stranger and asked him,

“Will you leave me here?”

He looked at me blinking rapidly and said “You sure?”

I shook my head yes bigly, slowly, like a confession. That instant he dashed out of the door like I had just professed to him that he was not sexy, and that he should stop attempting to sound that way. I made friends with four guys and three girls in the corner of the lounge as I finished my drink, then I went home and wrote the premise of this story.

“If I lose the light of the sun, I will write by candlelight, moonlight, no light. If I lose paper and ink, I will write in blood on forgotten walls. I will write always. I will capture nights all over the world and bring them to you.” —Henry Rollins

The Complete Package

And this realization hurts. Can hurt anyone. The bulkiest ogre, or the ittiest little red riding hood. The fact that I’m replaceable, but he’s not. That I wasn’t in it for me, I was in it for us. Sometimes, a person can be too sure of someone, too sure of that eventual future. This is the jinx I mean when I laugh at people who get their lady’s name tattooed on some outlandish place, and then they break up. This feeling is what happens when you name imaginary children, when you “try” to remain friends after it’s over. It’s equivalent to a few rejection letters a week in my case, and something’s gotta give.

Anne Lamott said in one of my favorite books Bird by Bird:

After thirty years or more of floundering around and screwing up, you will finally know, and when you get serious you will be dealing with the one thing you’ve been avoiding all along—your wounds. This is very painful. It stops a lot of people early on who didn’t get into this for the pain. They got into it for the money and the fame. So they either quit, or they resort to a type of writing that is sort of like candy making.

Writing is painful. Putting yourself on display, especially as a nonfiction writer, is painful. You run many risks, and taking those risks don’t generally keep you going. At least not for me. Today I’m busy, I have another new client, and I’m still writing Product Descriptions for the previous one (hold tight Ed!) I’m preparing for my second to last residency (yaeeh!), and my son’s birthday is today. Happy Birthday Tye! He makes twelve. I’m trying to remind myself why I wanted to write so badly when Bukowski already warned me not to do it if it “doesn’t come bursting out of you in spite of everything.”

The problem is though, it does: When I’m on all fours breathing bleach scrubbing the jets in the inside of my jacuzzi tub the stories come to me, when I’m organizing my styling drawer by color and type of hair pin, when I fall asleep and am awakened by my tween exclaiming “Nope, cause it’s my birfday, nope, can’t do anything cause it’s my birfday,” when I wake from a nightmare that just won’t quit and I can feel the fear of failure—yes, the stories come out of me. And I have to submit. I have to let my neuroses take over. I simply sit down, close my eyes, and remember his breathing.

You simply keep putting down one damn word after the other, as you hear them, as they come to you. You can either set brick as a laborer or as an artist. You can make the work a chore, or you can have a good time. You can do it the way you used to clear the dinner dishes when you were thirteen, or you can do it as a Japanese person would perform a tea ceremony, with a level of concentration and care in which you can lose yourself, and so in which you can find yourself. —Lamott

My mentor recently informed me that I’d overwritten the ending of my memoir. Happy enough as that was, it made me feel like damn, even after all of my work, I still couldn’t get it right. This, she said was a positive thing, overwriting. It meant revision, and voila! It means that I have pieces I can pull from that are well written, and can begin to see the light of editors. I should have been happy.

I’m excessive, if asked to do one thing, I’ll do ten. If asked to do my best, I’ll do better than best would have been. If chanced to fall in love, I suppose, I’ll fall… and I don’t know if I’ll come out. When I’m asked on interviews what my weaknesses are, saying “obsession with what I’m working on”—just doesn’t do any of my attempts justice.  Beyond being fixed or compulsive, by this time I’m already sure of the outcome. I give all.

I have made many mistakes, and lost much sleep over this.

To participate requires self-discipline and trust and courage, because this business of becoming conscious, of being a writer, is ultimately about asking yourself, how alive am I willing to be? —Lamott

I write because it makes me feel that “aliveness,” but it is lonely, and what I crave is experience and contact, to draw from. I am now alight upon a new journey. I think it will inform my writing in a terrific and mighty and even riveting way. It’s big news but I’m not ready to share it with the world yet. But I will tell you, it’s that BIG, and it makes me want to sing:

“So why does our writing matter, again?” they ask. Because of the spirit, I say. Because of the heart. Writing and reading can decrease our sense of isolation. They deepen and widen and expand our sense of life: they feed the soul. When writers make us shake our heads with the exactness of their prose and their truth, and even make us laugh about ourselves or life, our buoyancy is restored. We are given a shot at dancing with, or at least clapping along with, the absurdity of life, instead of being squashed by it over and over again. It’s like singing on a boat during a terrible storm at sea. You can’t stop the raging storm, but singing can change the hearts and spirits of the people who are together on that ship.—Lamott

Even though I’m sure it’s too late, and life has gone on—in every sense of the word gone…  even as backwards and misconstrued as “text-tone, is” and the language of tears, and as many uneducated dog-faced hookers I’m sure he’s moved on to, I’m going to write it out of me because I still miss him, I still miss him, and I’ll still miss him,  just a lil’ bit.

The Man I’m In Love With

I’ve written poems for him. He’s innovative, incredibly creative, unique, marvelous to speak to and easy to learn from.  A friend of mine asked me the other day “if I even knew what I’d look for in a man if I were looking?” I suppose he meant to inquire about what the most attractive attributes the man I’d love and marry and potentially cook butterbuns in the oven for would have. I realized I hadn’t put too much thought into “Superman,” and who can ever be exactly correct in saying, but after a bit of thought some of those qualities and traits might be:

  1. Artistic
  2. Intelligent
  3. Honest
  4. Funny
  5. Eclectic
  6. Ambitious/Driven/Goal Oriented
  7. Empathetic
  8. Observant
  9. Level-headed
  10. Reliable
  11. Open Minded
  12. Respectful
  13. Faithful
  14. Experienced
  15. Expressive

As far as physical attributes he’d be handsome, a cul-de-sac type of smile that turns you around in a complete circle, pretty teeth, polished and well-put together look. He’d be well-dressed, confident, successful, and know how to take care of his family. What do you all look for in a significant lover?

I suppose the man I am in love with is also either the creator of these Lace Up Skate Boots (which I loOove more than any) or he is a fictional character that just doesn’t exist. I can’t tell which.

How To Get Over Someone You Love

The day I met the ex I never got over, I wasn’t paying attention.

It was before I did sales at the gym and consistently sold memberships in my tiny white tennis skirt—without ever having never played even an hour of tennis in my life. It was prior to me saving the aforementioned Gym as “Queen of Member Retention,” and before I moved up the ladder of corpor-Hate America. Sorry, I have trouble saying that word. And before I became anything that I happen to be (on some days) proud of today, it was before I became who I am.

I worked the front desk.

Yes. I did. I made $9.75 an hour (which was good for back then) and I worked the desk greeting folks that came in and out. I fiddled with pens and post it notes, I daydreamed. In the midst of it all a man in all his carefree bliss, came in once, sometimes twice a day, and my job (or the game I played) was to remember the members by name before they swiped their key card and our POS system showed us who they were.

Every time I saw him approaching, I lost most of my nerve. He was toffee nougat-colored, which was different than my prior ex who was mixed black and white—Chiquita colored. He was different. I date blue, red, purple, beige, doesn’t matter long as he treats me right, but I generally find myself drawn to complexions my color or much lighter—smooth skin, big ridiculous smiles, and boldly-bordering-cocky personalities. But he was a shade darker than I was, and he wore basketball shorts and a wife-beater tank top. Wha? You have your preferences, I have mine.

It wasn’t just the confidence, I can tell you all with a straight face that his walk had a lot to do with it. I could pick this man out from more than fifty feet away by the way he walked. I can also tell you with a straight face that I’m still in love with that walk today. In all kinds of love. This has nothing to do with the rest of him. But this guy, daily, would walk in, smile, wink, or say hello, and for at least three weeks this went on without any further conversation. If my heart weren’t beating so fast, I’d have sworn I died. Each time.

I got frustrated with it all soon enough and figured I’d avoid the awkward. So when I saw him approaching I took off to the loo. Why stay and be tortured? He wasn’t interested, he wasn’t asking me out, he was just flashing his Colgates at me and moving on for his workout. When I returned there was a single pink flower and my name spelled—incorrectly, and a stick figure picture of him (apparently looking for me) with a question mark.

I was blinking my eyes so hard my co-worker had to cover me at the front— folks were walkin’ in all willy nilly not swiping their key cards. I was staring at the paper so long my co-worker was like–

“Lanii, it ain’t in 3-D”

I was what back then I would’ve said was called “trippen’,” and then I didn’t see him again for two, maybe three days. When he came in again, there was another note, something about him missing my face and him having the flu, with a cute little sick stick figure. He waved me goodbye that day and I might have creamed. Can girls cream instantaneously like that?

Nevermind, don’t answer.

Over the next few weeks, more smiling, more flirting, even struck up a good forty minute conversation in which my sweet boss (James at the time)—overlooked because he saw me glow like a worm in the best dirt-bliss ever.

Then one day I snapped.

I couldn’t take it. He sees me, leaves notes if he doesn’t see me. Has great conversation. But he doesn’t ask me out, doesn’t ask for my number, doesn’t offer his. He just, doesn’t. I can’t like any man too much that “doesn’t.” There was no ring on his finger so what was it? I had to know. I asked what the heck was going on and played it off with more laughs. I nearly screwed the whole thing up by accidentally telling him he ‘reminded me of my “almost step-dad,”‘ which was pretty much a party-foul, but I’m notorious for messing things up when I like someone.

I’ll stop there because a lot of this story may go in my memoir, but he didn’t call right away. It was like he forgot me in the slush pile, then came back to me last. It ended up being the longest relationship I’ve had to date, and I may start a series of short stories about the “thrills and chills” we had. But the most important thing was: I learned something. And if nothing else that is what this life is about. That is what any and every bit of anything we go through is about.

By the time the man called me I’d built up so many unrealistic ideals about him that I could hardly contain myself. What he did, best, was master the balance of wait and want. When I was next to him, the way he smelled might have caught my lungs on fire—I would breathe him in so deeply.

I consider myself a somewhat narcissistic person, I think to be a writer to some extent, one has to be. But at that time this man’s well being became more important than my own. Stephen Dobyns is quoted in his poem Desire saying “What is desire but the wish for some relief from the self?”

The more he cared about me, the more I was propelled into caring about him… but really, he just showed me that he wanted me, then made me wait. Later we unraveled, slowly and painfully, but Kim Addonizio said it best in her book Ordinary Genius:

But do not let us quarrel anymore.

And never let us speak again.

Or always let us try forever.

—Kim Addonizio, Ordinary Genius

What I found was that I am no longer “in love” necessarily with him as a person, but rather a mixture of his qualities and tendencies. With further study of myself I also came to terms with the fact that there are a lot of other people with the same temperaments, and even the same mannerisms. I “got over it” once I accepted the fact that I may not ever get over a person, and accepted that it may not be meant for me to do so, but I will grow into a better me because of the experience.

Some say pick your battles, some say choose a person whose flaws you can love the most, for me—I’m pretty picky, I suppose I’m not “all in,” unless a person shows me that he can not only not give up so easily, but better—that he can “try forever.”

Special thanks to Heartdutchess for the picture.

Unprotected Sex

You are in the throws. You are ready mentally, physically, probably not emotionally—but you can deal with that much. All of a sudden, you’re done. You’re exhausted, it was wonderful, or it was not. Either way, you realize… you did not. I repeat, you did not. Use protection.

As a woman, there are a few MAJOR things we think about. Me, meaning. me, but I can attempt to speak for some.

  • You wonder about how many other dumb*^$ women he’s been with that he didn’t care enough about to make this same mistake with, while you try to still tell yourself you’re special.
  • Maybe, you think, since we just went half on a baby/half on a life together that he has deeper feelings for you than he realizes… fast forward—the reality—that man hasn’t thought about nor gauged the reality of what has transpired, nor is he worried one frikkin little bit.
  • Now, you need to have the serious talk with him because you probably want something serious depending upon how good it was… (aka where is this going? What do you want? Why didn’t I think of this sooner?) Apparently, we’re not in Kansas anymore.

And panic shoots through your thoughts. You develop a schizophrenic holy fuckery reaction, then you add in—how can I take this back? And your worry that the things you can no longer change are causing you to not think straight so you second-guess the belief you had in your suave accomplice, and beat yourself over the head with a textbook. Ok, last one was just me.

I’m compelled to write this blog because my bestie (poor baby) fell for an artist. I tried to tell her, you know I did. Us artists are wayward. We care, boi o boi do we care, and then we wake up one day and we don’t. We just don’t.  You must be able to change as fast as we do, or you are left, back there, the same. Having been on both sides of the “overwhelming infatuation” spectrum, I know this much. Apparently the guy she fell for was a strikingly handsome-sweet-talking, and pretty well-known graffiti artist. She’d been raving about him for the last few months, their connection, they’re both uncomfortable in opposing transitive positions in their lives, and the fact that they both like getting drunk and having a good time. A few months going in, he told her he wanted a relationship and they (without protection), erh erh erhmed.

Day before yesterday’s yesterday she not only calls me with the news, but she also calls me with him flaking out on their plans together and he has since changed his mind about the relationship. She cried these—big—screaming—hollow tears into the receiver as I shopped for my tampons at Target. Lol. It was not funny, but that last part was.

Many of us have made this mistake, I included. I learn once again from the recoiling of the feelings inside of me when she told me this, and from her deep moans of sadness and regret in our male-bashing session.

“You were wayyyyy too good for him and you knooooooow he didn’t deserve you anyway, losers I tell you!” I say to her.

But the truth is, it can’t be avoided, really, eventually you have to trust someone, or you’ll always be alone and that will eat you up s-l-o-w-l-y. Eventually you want to be careless. You tire of the “safe” way. You are aware of the consequences, and you pay the price anyway.

I have a reason. I rush it. I love the rush. I love not knowing somebody so completely and that blind trust that you’re ok—your hands in the air—when the coaster could derail and send you flying into a broke-necked oblivion. Why? Because I’ve heard stories of friends who met a person then just “knew” it was right, got married, and three kids later they’re happily pushing their sugar-infested germily brats on the swing, at the top of the hill, on the acre of land they just bought, with the maid that comes on Wednesday evenings. Because I know people who met and fell in that kind of love, and it isn’t easy but they haven’t given up on it. Because I’ve been reading too much Italo Calvino and in his Six Memos he tells this Chinese story:

Among Chuang-tzu’s many skills, he was an expert draftsman. The King asked him to draw a crab. Chuang-tzu replied that he needed five years, a country house, and twelve servants. Five years later the drawing was still not begun. “I need another five years,” said Chuang-tzu. The King granted them. At the end of these ten years, Chuang-tzu took up his brush and, in an instant, with a  single stroke, he drew a crab, the most perfect crab ever seen.” —Italo Calvino, Six Memos for the Next Millennium

I think making love is that perfect drawing that may take years to perfect. I think that when it comes to sex I often put it off because of fear. Because I don’t have the right brush (lol). Because I need five years, a country house, and a dozen servants. Or because I need a book deal, a PhD, and o yes, servants would help out. Because I want more than what I’m afraid to discover that man won’t ever be able to give to me. Because it all has to do with the perfect stroke, and in order to really feel that perfect stroke you have to be open enough to receive it—without anything protecting you, as catshit crazy as that sounds. And best of all because, the time when I let go before, I got no where.

I told my best friend (and I really hope she doesn’t kill me for writing about this, I love you girlie) that I was so sorry that this happened and that I would get her a glass of wine as soon as she came back into town. What a good friend I am. Then I asked her. “Why didn’t you use protection?” Her answer was as silly as I thought.

“I don’t know.”

I currently want to lock up the whole idea of trust in people, and throw away the key forever.

Love How You Walked with Your Hands in Your Pockets

  • Submissions
  • Memoir’s Epilogue
  • Agent Research
  • Eating Pretzel Crisps (Buffalo Wing Flavor)
  • Product Description Writing

Been rocking out to this Boyce Avenue Cover of Taylor Swift’s Last Kiss:

You loved my handshake, meeting your father

Said you loved how I walked with my hands in my pockets

—Boyce Avenue

I’ve been quite busy with back to back clients! Thanks everyone.

Definitely hoping to take on more fashion and product description writing.

A recommendation is the best form of flattery, ever. I love my readers, and lurkers.

Email me for details and click here.

*

Can’t Find The Man of My Dreams ‘Cause I Don’t Sleep

 

I'm definitely the baby in this picture

I'm definitely the baby in this picture, lol

Every five minutes the thing nearest me changed into a mistake and disappeared. —Tao Lin

I’m in, if, of, and. I miss him like writing with my left hand. Tea cup got up and said “damn, that’s bad.” The what you’ve got til’ it’s gone. Watching me sleep. Zumba drop out. Clothes don’t fold themselves. Walls don’t happen to paint themselves fireplace red. Over my head. Send to journals. Write it. Revise it. Read it. Scratch it out. Insomniacs anonymous. He winked at me! And then I am there. I love it when a man winks. Then I have blacked. Then I am where? He said welcome to my world and held my hand while we were going under. I don’t swim like a fishie. How come they don’t tell you the things you want are gonna hurt this much? I’m poppin’ Motrins on a roller coaster.

~~~

*Woman of my dreams, I don’t sleep so I can’t find her* actual lyric by Lil Wayne

I said “I like butterflies,” he said “I’m more of a ladybugs kinda guy”

Have you ever played This or That? OK. The game’s intention is to get to know the other person and to arouse conversation about certain subjects that wouldn’t normally be discussed. It’s great to use with potential love interests, long-time boyfriends (if the relationship feels stagnant) or interestingly quirky friends. Here’s an example:

  • Honey or Sugar?
  • Salad or Fruit?
  • Love or Money?
  • Passion or Compassion?
  • Blazing Hot or Snow Storm?
  • Butterflies or Ladybugs?

There’s no “right,” or “wrong,” necessarily. There’s just the asking, and in that asking you find out if you would have chosen the same or not, and you ask why. The point is you build comfort, you talk, and eventually, you get to the raunchier or more seriously morbid questions. You get a view of someone’s thinking in ridiculously hypothetical situations, similar to the game “Would You Rather?” The Twisted Sick and Wrong Version. Only they’re in short comparisons or weird juxtapositions:

  • Top or bottom?
  • Fast or slow?
  • Mentally or emotionally?
  • Terminally ill or paralyzed?

How much of getting to know someone is “opposites attract” until opposites don’t attract at all? Until, you’re just two people physically attracted to each other that don’t have much else in common—really? When is it best to let go?

My mom used to say “You stay until the bad start to outweigh the good.” She also used to say “You ain’t had enough yet, ’cause when you’ve had enough, it’ll be enough.”

I’ve had relationships like this, sometimes even friendships, where I find myself offering all the “let’s hang out,” “why don’t we go and talk,” “how about we get together and…” I’ve been the initiator, the person that sustains the bond, and the digger in finding more commonalities or differences we can laugh at. I am tired… of friends… and people like this. Of people who not only don’t make valiant attempts at “getting to know” or “maintaining a friendship” but of one-sided companionships and “orange-squeezing”courtships altogether. I usually quit them soon enough.

“When you squeeze an orange, orange juice comes out – because that’s what’s inside. When you are squeezed, what comes out is what is inside.”—Dr. Wayne Dyer

When you fight, argue, “debate” if you will, what comes out of it is emotions. I’ve found that there are some people I can hold my ground with, and then there are others that because I am seemingly suspended in air—I’m unable to articulate myself the same. Because the conversations are held (to me) on a higher echelon, I can get my point across very little, if at all. Not because I am afraid to lose them, because a loss is sometimes inevitable, but because I am trying to learn from them. I am trying to study what makes them, because I am quiet—I am recording. Sometimes to prevent the same issue, other times to do what most have the hardest time doing, really listening, present in that moment.

Never in my life have I ever been told at the beginning of a conversation what the outcome will be, and then still gone through with the conversation. It was sort of like being told “if you eat this monstrous bag of gummy bears you will have a tummy ache, a toothache, and gain 10 lbs.” only to then, be forced to eat it, all. Because I’m doing a “happiness project”, and for my own self-improvement and overall well-being, I decided to let this fly. I came to find out that what my intuition felt about the conversation and the reality of the situation was one in the same.

Recently at a gas station I had a misunderstanding get to a point of screaming, only to realize, when a person is proving a point by using an example, it’s generally an example they’ve learned from and there is something you’ve said or done, that causes them to feel like they need to give exactly that example.

This is in the same way I wouldn’t offer a student in my workshop, (or the virtual writing center, or the tutor center I work in) help with commas and punctuation, if I didn’t feel they needed that. I would also humbly preface that I struggle with run-on sentences, overly flowery language, and creative licensing—just for comfort.

We are all not perfect in this big bowl of melting. We all have our flaws, but like I was once (and there are many variations of this) told:

“When you pick people to be around you, you have to pick the people whose flaws you like the best.

When did I let go? From the second I didn’t feel like I had any choice anymore if I’d held on.

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