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sometimes, i breathe



and the wife of atlas pauses



a lifetime distilled into sighs.


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Saturday, June 24, 2006
the subconscious
Please regard this entry as true rambling, with no value to anyone other than myself.  I am terribly sorry for publishing it on the internet.

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I bought a Zippo fixed gear road bike for two dollars in my dreams last night.  Now, I know Zippo doesn't make bikes, but learning to ride a fixed gear made by a lighter company just spells out danger to me.  That was the first dream in a long time that actually struck me.

I was walking along a street, it seemed like a Florentine atmosphere, and spotted a used junk store on the corner.  Outside there was a skinny little red roadbike, nicely dusty to show its age.  I fell in love with it and knew who I was giving it to.  Well, I knew who I should give it to, but then I saw that it was a fixed gear and decided to keep it for myself to learn on.  I know thats a comment on my selfishness, a trait that has really been bothering me lately.  I feel like I haven't shared enough with people, so please take a ride on my bike with me, I know its much better that way.  So anyway, I entered the store and looked through the loot, promising myself I would make presents for all of my friends when I got home.  Then I felt bad and decided to go outside to see if they had any other Zippo roadbikes outside on sale for two dollars.  There were and I picked out a typical neon orange mountain bike with all kinds of gears and brakes, but I wasn't satisfied because I didn't like it as much.

For some reason, I had to walk back to my apartment and didn't bring the bikes with me.  Then my mother picked me up and we went back to the store for me to load them onto the car.  Unfortunately the store was closing up and everything was inside.  I had to beg and plead to be let in to find my bike in the basement storeroom.  After dealing with the gruff pretentious manager (who took the form of a gentleman I have yet to meet), I was struck by his conversation and his compassion.  I had previously written him off.  He was beautiful and loving and very helpful.  However, it was still just a nice appreciative stranger conversation offering insight and kindness, similar to all of the conversations I've been having with new people lately.  I feel like I am loving so easily, yet never quite deeply.  I'm still getting past the superficial.  Anyway, the entire time we were talking, my eyes were darting from his to the dusty bike (now outside) making sure no one stole it away from me.  I was terrified and antsy that someone would pick it up and pay two dollars and ride it away.  I couldn't find the neon orange bike in the clutter of the storeroom again, but it didn't matter to me.  It was the red one that I needed.  That was where my soul was and the manager realized it.  Yet he still tried to get me to take the orange one for free.  He looked all over the labryinth of rooms to find it but we couldn't. 
Finally I got really anxious and impatient and didn't even wish the manager a proper goodbye just kinda said see ya and fled outside to grasp onto my bike.  My mom was still in the car looking at me and waiting angrily for me to pick it up and load it into the trunk.  For some reason, I couldn't do that and she sped away.  I was left outside of this store (now closed and abandoned) with a fixed gear bike that I didn't know how to ride.  Still, I loved it and it held more terror and anticipation than I could even emotionally contain.

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I know the ones who could possibly analyze this won't care enough to or will say its silly and ridiculous, and I guess that is exactly why I need to learn to zigzag through the history and explore new neighborhoods.  The dangerous part is the ride, but that is the teaching tool.  I just can't figure out why I still want the old bike as my vehicle.  I have no clue how to work it and really don't need to know how.  Its always the challenge.  I know there is a much better fit bicycle equipped with coaster brakes and chrome fenders.  I swear I've got it hidden in my garage somewhere.

Dreams freak me out, man.

Posted at 10:06 pm by anxiousslumber
two cents?  

 
Wednesday, June 07, 2006
my mother always said, "don't touch."

I've always been one to pick at things.

I chip nailpolish to watch it flake away.  Blisters are raw by day two since I wonder what shade of pink the skin underneath is.  Department store clothes are at my tugging mercy to see whether the fabric is strong.  I never let conversations go.  I'll poke until the breaking point to see what the motive is.  More frequently, I rip off scabs just to see if I'll still bleed underneath. 

After bleeding myself for so long, the infection disappears.  Eventually it dries up and only a smooth surface of my own new skin remains.  I guess thats why I value truth and brutual honesty.  I know I'll simply rip off whatever synthetic bandaid or even natural gauze that you place on the wound.  My own blood will clean it out eventually. 

I can never just let things be.  I need to see what is underneath.  What is everything made of?

Sure curiousity killed the cat, but at least at the last moment, the cat knows what killed it.  I think knowing why is worth it, we've all got nine lives.


Posted at 1:27 pm by anxiousslumber
two cents?  

 
Sunday, June 04, 2006
cider season
I said something the other day that has been ringing through my head without censor.  I'm not afraid of falling, its the jumping that frightens me. 

Why does leaping cause me to freeze when I have no fear of whatever destruction or injury may come?  I've become so good at healing, yet still haven't improved on the daring strides of beginnings.  Its the beginnings that lead to accomplishment, not the passive nuturing recovery that follows a fall.  Sometimes, we simply don't have the span to make it to the next ledge, yet that doesn't mean we shouldn't throw our weight into the air and see what gravity does.  Its all about gravity.  If you can lose consciousness of the reality of weights on your ankles, the baggage on your back, you can jump and leap and climb to the most unexpected places. 

If I trust that skies will overcome weight, then gravity doesn't exist.  Its the nature of soaring adventures.  Sure falls happen, but weightlessness and oxygen cure all wounds.  I'm not embracing this mentality completely yet.  I still stutter step before leaping, I still pause.  In the pauses, I miss the gust of wind and fall into the downdraft.

I guess the only thing I can do is half-heartedly skip and fall, accept the unearned bruises and grasp a handhold after I've appropriately conquered any resistance from myself.  I must be unsatisfied with my safety.  The pitfall of being around everyone you love is that you forget to trust yourself.  I'm starting to not take on the risks and challenges that have propelled me in life up until Pittsburgh.  Its past time to alter that trend.  I'm ready for adventures and ramblings and unknown variables and breathless movement again.

Which way will I turn?
Awaiting and seeking the most challenging routes.


Currently listening to:
Woman King
By Iron & Wine



 
Tuesday, May 23, 2006
crushing spices
Observance from last week:  Driving home from a party smelling like oregano instead of cigarette smoke is refreshing. 

Real Topic:
Yesterday, as I was leaving the Carnegie Library around four in the afternoon, I was stopped by a man in his late forties.  He was wearing a polo and khakis, walking quickly as if in a hurry to get throught the library doors.  Then, he passed me and did a complete stop and whipped around.  He immediately asked me if I was from Boston, (no), and if I was twenty one (odd second question to say to someone you didn't know, and no).  Before even introducing himself, he discerned that I was Irish and said that negated the 21 law.  Then he asked me if I would like to get a drink with him and told me he was a vodka importer.  I said no, as he hadn't even asked for my name yet and he blushed and sheepishly handed me his business card and told me to contact him if I would ever like to do business with him.  He said he could always use sales associates and that the perks were phenomenal.  He said, for me, the 21 thing didn't matter, he'd swing it.  So, basically I met a vaguely illegal vodka bootlegger and had a conversation with him outside of the Carnegie Library.  I could be shady, I always liked speakeasys, but I think I will pass on the opportunity.  You never know who you will meet.  I've got his business card, so if anyone wants a date, let me know. 

It was one of those HA moments, the moments that had disappeared for so long when I was preoccupied.  In Boston when everything was so foggy, I loved talking to friends that were still having those encounters and making meaning from them.  I envied the bravery of those who weren't afraid of talking to strangers in the streets of a new city, but I'm finally growing into my boots.  I'm having HA moments again.  I'm regaining my chronic eavesdropping tendency.  I overheard someone at a coffeeshop tell his friend that he urinates in his wetsuit.  HA.

Don't mistake my one laugh as a judgement or cruelty, its more of a Ha, who knew? sort of thing.  I know that the encounters I initiate are probably just as ridiculous and random.  I'm amazed by individuals everyday in this city.  I'm glad I'm no longer so completely self-distracted and can now take note of the incredible people I pass by everyday.  I'm starting to remember the good and laugh at the absurdity of everything that enters into my life, even if the encounter is only for a brief second.  I know good things are in store tomorrow.  We will see the specifics as they come.

 
Monday, May 15, 2006
the space and contextualization garbage.
I had lost reading motivation for awhile.  Beginning Invisible Man tonight.  Spent a few weeks in Butler County, visited lakes with friends, ate a whole lot of food. 

Day one of classes and I'm refocused on my goals again.  Going to the gym every morning, then reading for an hour or so before class.  I'm so much happier when I am achieving something.  I'm sure that has to say something about my portrait of self-worth, but I'm ignoring it and just living with being happy when I'm bettering things.  I'm not letting anyone discourage me anymore with telling me I'm too ambitious or too mature.  I still play in the rain.  I still think burps are funny.  I still shudder at scary movies and don't complain about how unrealistic they are. 

I'm rediscovering the importance of making my own schedule, not trying to fit nicely into everyone else's.  (note for future entry: the calendar).

Everything sounds so selfish when put into words, yet I know its the only way I'll reflect and remember enough to implement it. 

I really should be a therapist.


Posted at 8:54 pm by anxiousslumber
two cents?  

 
Sunday, May 07, 2006
cross-country
I know that once you are miles away, its impossible to stop running.

I'm still now, yet everyone else is racing.

Someday, someone will stop.

 
Saturday, May 06, 2006
the he said, she said.
An curious observance that sparked my interest about the previous post: the lack of gender pronouns.

Something as simple as that would have been overlooked before.  And its important.  Individuals not him and her.  So much of me is in ambiguity, the complex of characteristics and tendencies not normally defined into nice his/her closets.  Starting to just exist as Jess again.  Clothes never really fit me right.

I'm improving without consciously focusing.  Good signs.  The good words are coming back.

I am (not she is) starting to be worth listening to again.


Posted at 8:19 pm by anxiousslumber
two cents?  

 
Friday, May 05, 2006
bandages of aluminum
i just don't have anything to say anymore.
hundreds of thousands of conversations are in my head, yet i don't have the right to speak them to those that i'm thinking of. 
or, yes, i do have the right, but i don't want to do that to others.

i don't want to talk anymore.
that scares and hurts people.

i'm tired of pushing, forcing, trying.
i'll still be here when its over.  i'll still be me.  i'll still be thinking.
i'll still be ascribing meaning.  i'm sorry.

no, i'm not sorry.

so instead of speaking, i just babble.  i babble about every mundane interaction i have throughout the day.  i babble about food, about purchases, about pets.  i babble like the middle-aged mother or the teenage girl.  just filling up the seconds so that we can move on.  taking up time that we can call quality.  not laughing or understanding.  nothing is worth listening.  nothing is quality.

i'm flat, you're flat.  babble babble babble.

i'm not like everyone else.  words mean things. 
words have become white noise.
static is unmoving.  i'm not sure if it will ever clear out.

we are lost in silence.  nothing is left.

i'll find my voice again sometime.  i won't be afraid to speak.  i'm not too much. 
i just don't know if i'll ever have someone to listen and not drown. 

 
Sunday, April 30, 2006
vanquishing saints.
I'm starting to get antsy.  This is where the challenge sets in, forcing myself to keep moving on a path that is so easy to veer off.  Self-discipline.  Not letting guilt or spite or jealousy or bitterness get in the way.  Not just running into the same situation again.  I still have days where I loathe every thought I have.  And this loathing makes me even angrier at myself.  It reminds me of why I am here.  And I hate why I am here.  But letting go will come with time, I just need to not keep obsessing over setbacks.  I need to stop worrying about what everyone else is thinking and most importantly stop criticizing what I'm thinking.  Jesus, I can think.
(He doesn't like that, Jesus.)

I've finished Fury and Teacher Man so far.  Kafka up next?  I watched Rent and The Magdalene Sisters.  I played Halo and liked it with friends that no one knows.  Read stories to a little girl at Quiet Storm and played castle with her. Laughed with strangers and friends from Boston, Iowa, New York, France.  I'm not going to run.  I'm going to stay glued here for awhile.  Patience.  I will have everything I wish for, I don't need to grasp and sprint towards it.  Enjoy the stories, the words, the moments.  I can stay in them for awhile.  I don't need to rush like others.  I've never been very fast.

Fixing a bike with Ben this week.  Maybe a visit to Lake Arthur?  Chinese food or Wild Wednesdays would be fun.  Once again packing all of my childhood books, only this time they are moving to my house and not being carried to my mother's.  And its my house now, not my house wishing and waiting for someone else to keep me company in it.  I like having this space.  I love this apartment. 

I'm going to do some laundry tonight, light candles and make lemon poppy seed muffins.  I'll give six to my mom and six to my dad tomorrow.  Finally, peace, after such a long time shaking.

Pittsburgh was a good move.  Who knows where I will end up in a few years from now, maybe back in Boston, maybe in Ireland, maybe Portland, maybe in Missoula.  But right now, this is where I am meant to be.

Peace. In the good Catholic way.

Posted at 10:44 pm by anxiousslumber
two cents?  

 
Saturday, April 29, 2006
TWELVE KILLS! A rocketlauncher princess.
Good day.  Started bad, ended good.
Just need to keep it up.

And, its summer.
Tomorrow's first day of summer agenda:
Read a book, write in here to replace this entry, play with Mr. Lucas Carpenter.
Summer.  Such a different vision now.
But different isn't bad. 

Posted at 1:04 am by anxiousslumber
two cents?  

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