Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Moving at the speed of light



Oh, were'd I go? Didn't see me, did you? Thats because I'm moving at WARP SPEED. Its a little game we call, "over committing youself." Stage managing did you say? Why yes, I have time for that. Plan an international event for favorite activist organization? Why not. 5 birthdays in one month? Bring it on.

I'd like to add a reading of nonficition work I wrote to the mix. That's something I'm very excited and nervouse about. When I look at all the things I'm doing, I can say "THAT is what I actually do." So really, I'm doing the one thing I feel I should be doing. Writing.

Quick MD update: He's great. No one wants to hear it because its mushy and it makes people want to vomit but I'm really really happy. MD makes me smile all day long. He's the best boyfriend a girl ever had. Sweet, considerate, worships the ground I walk on, brings me things, drives me places, is proud of everything I do, listens to me rant, thinks I'm beautiful in jammies with messy hair, is able to communicate like a rational adult, has his shit together, speaks theatre, and is emotionally available. Whew, what a list. Feel free to vomit now, I know I would.

The "L" bomb was dropped the other night. As in "ove" He said it first and the hammer of fate smacked me upside the head like a bitch. I said it back, and I meant it. Sometimes I'm just a little slow to realize things.

Job front: I hate my SDJ with a burning passion. I'm actually going to run out of here like my arse is on fire in about two minuets. I hate being hassled everyday and I feel like I work for a really evil bad place. I'm applying for work in the nonprofit sector, preferably helping women. I want a job that makes me feel like I'm helping people, not one that just eats my soul and shits on my spirit.

And its 5pm. Time to fly.

Sunday, February 19, 2006

Bathroom-Demolition Derby Update



Ok, that's not a picture of my bathroom. Not even close. That's the picture of my dream bathroom for my dream country home that I will never make enough money to own. Lets me realistic here. I'm a writer/activist/artist/nonprofit desk jockey

My bathroom is still a construction zone. The good news is it now has walls. Drafty walls with holes in it and half dried putty, but walls just the same.

A very tired MD drove me and the monster cat home Wendsday night, greeted by the singing landlord who was still standing on a ladder in the bathroom.

"Oh, you're home." He said. "Its ok if I keep working?"

"Yes." I said.

I was just happy to be home. I slept right through the banging like a dead person.

Not much has progressed with the bathroom. All of my bathroom things live on the kitchen table and I eat meals in the living room. I've developed a rutine of showering around the box of tools, the buckets of paint and the ladder. He comes and goes and I'm no longer suprised to get a knock at my door at 11:00pm on a week night.

"Hey, um...I fogot my cell phone charger." I hand it to him.

"And...can I borrow a coat hanger, I kind of locked my keys in the truck."

"Yes, singing landlord." I say, "You can HAVE a coathanger."

Such is my life.

He came by Saturday night while I was out at the NY party girl's party of the century (it was fun, the vodka was free)and left streeks of blue on the walls and drips on the bathroom floor. Today we've been like Ozzey and Harriet, moving around eachother on a lazy Sunday as I write (or think really hard about how I should be writing, then listen to "collective shorts" on NPR and think about how I'm a shitty writer, then go for a walk and think of writing some more...)and he continues to paint the bathroom.

Somday I will move back in and liberate the kitchen table of shampoo and bath poofs, but I have a feeling the saga of the singing landlord will continue.

MD likes to say that the singing landlord is a super hero, and his power is building things.

"What's that you say? The bank has been robbed? Let me build a wall around that bad guy, where's my hammer?!"

The singing landlord has been having an on going battle with the asswhipe who owns the business bellow me. The jerk had the nerve to shut off my hot water just because he has access to the pipes and wanted to save himself like 50 cents off his heating bill at night.

"Don't worry about it." The singing landlord told me, "I'll build a wall around the pipes and add a door with a padlock. He won't be shutting off anyone's hot water."

Friday, February 17, 2006

Tagged again and futzing around on a Friday

I've been tagged by Synge, and not a moment to soon. Its Friday and I'd rather be playing on the freeway in a blizzard then sitting in front of this computer right now. So while all my co-workers call in sick, and my work buddy naps in the back room, I'll be filling out online surveys and creating dozens of new blog posts. The best part is I'm still clocked in and getting paid for it.

Four Jobs I've Had: Stage Manager, Bartender, Coffee slinger, Prop Mistress

Four Movies I Can Watch Repeatedly: Say Anything, Pratical Magic, Fight Club, Donnie Darko

Four Places I've Lived: Arizona, Chicago, London, Syracuse, NY

Four TV Shows I Love: (Back when I had a TV...) CSI, X-Files, The Daily Show, ER

Four Places I've Vacationed: Ireland, England, Italy, San Diego

Four of My Favorite Dishes: Baked Mac & Cheese, French Toast, Yummy salads with feta cheese, home made pizza

Four Sites I Visit Daily: Democracy Now, The Onion, CNN.com, whitehouse.org

Four Places I Would Rather Be Right Now: Watching movies at home, A beach somewere, having brunch with friends

Four Bloggers I am TAGGING: The sad thing is I don't really know any bloggers......

Monday, February 13, 2006

"Sorry about your bathroom, we couldn't find the pipe."



I had a bit of a suprise on Friday evening.

I may have mentioned that the singing landlord wanted to "knock a small hole" in my bathroom wall to fix a pipe.

It wasn't a small hole.

When I came home on Friday, I found my cat covered in dust playing with the rubble that was my bathroom and my kitchen a construction zone. He knocked down ALL the walls in my bathroom, removed the ceiling and filled the sink and bathtub with the broken pieces. What was going to be a small inconvience turned into an unlivible situation. I was a bit upset.

"I couldn't find the pipe, turns out it was in the ceiling!" The singing landlord exclaimed, muffled by a dust mask.

The dust he was protecting himself from was spread through my entire apartment, smudged with cat paw prints and his giant boots.

"Hey, you weren't attached to that tin ceiling, were you?" He asked. I was. I will now be getting a drywall ceiling. I did talk him into new outlets, a new lighting fixture and painting the walls blue.

I may ask for a discount on rent as well.

I dragged out my duffel bag and started packing. MD came and got me and the cat, assisting in stuffing what amounted to 20 pounds of pure furry muscle into a bag while she clawed our arms and projectile vomited on MD. I beleive he gets the boyfriend of the year award for this.

I have been staying with MD for about 3 days now while the singing landlord continues to distroy my apartment. I've only been dating MD for a month and I've already moved in with my black cat who sheds like its her job and loves to sleep in MD's closet. I'll find a way to make up for this.

On Sunday MD and I braved the blizzard of the century to hike our way back to my apartment through unplowed streets. It looked like a scene from "The Day After Tomorrow." (worst movie ever, by the way). 2 feet of snow lay in unplowed streets. Families lost small children in snow drifts, neighboors dug through piles of snow, searching for thier car.

"Hey Ben, I think I found your car! Mine must be the lunp farther down."

MD and I trudged through hip deep snow at one point until we reached my apartment, the front door covered in untouched new snow. Inside was a pile of rubble were my bathroom had been. Any hopes of returing home that day were squashed. I packed enough for a week and took pictures of the destruction.

"Oh yeah, I just put up the walls and the ceiling's next. I should get most of the rubble out today." The singing landlord told me around 12:00pm today.

"Yes," I asked, "But is it livable? I want ALL the dust out."

There was a little pause on his end. He asked me to call him around 5:00pm.

I will keep you posted.

Friday, February 10, 2006

I live in a Hazard Zone



I can't escape it.

I wake up with it. "Boom, clank, honk," The sound of cars rolling over the big metal coverings in the street. It echos in my head. The sound of trucks backing up, workers yelling, things crashing, nail guns screwing, sledges hammering. It has become the soundtrack of my life. Its almost to the point were I can't hear it.

Or perhaps I'm slowly going deaf.

I recieved a lovely call from the singing landlord last night around 12am, when we usualy converse on tenant matters. He would like to put a hole in my bathroom wall. A large hole. Aparently he has to install a pipe because "something broke" upstairs. I wondered how large this hole would be. Would the cat get out this hole? Could people see me through this hole? And worst of all....could the mice escape into my aparment through this hole? I fear the singing landlord may actually liberate an army of mice my cat has been keeping at bay.

The construction has now entered my apartment. I contemplated this fact as I listned to the singing landlord install shelving unites in the apartment above me at 1am.

There is no escape.

Today I walked into my lovely SDJ job only to be greated with sour faces. The old turn of the century building that is slowly making all who work within sick. The smoke from the fire behind us, the smell of buring food from the deli sneaking into our airducts. Then, the jackhammer started

"Ehhhhhhhhhrrrrrrhhhheee" The vibrations were actually making my back hurt. A coworker joked that I was getting wipe lash from sitting in my chair. It was so loud I found myself yelling above it on the phone. People complained, walls vibrated, the pounding in my head increased.

"You have got to get out of that job." MD told me.

But were would I go? Its all around me. The entire city is under construction. My nieghborhood looks diffrent everytime I walk outside. "were did that buildling come from?" I'll wonder. Things pop up over night, the banging apart of the dreams city dwellers have. Sometimes I wonder if I tried to take a vacations somewere quiet, if the dead slince would keep me up all night. The sound of crickets would cause me to bolt up in bed, the way the jackhammer would cause a country person to fly out of thier chair.

MD has offered to let me crash at his place in the city, although I may point out that there is construction going on outside his window as well. Temporarly moving in with my sorta boy friend may be a bit much for a 1 month relationship. Besides, I have a strange sense of pride in making it through all this construction. It makes a good story as long as I survive to tell it.

I just hope I don't loose my hearing.

I really like hearing.

Monday, February 06, 2006

So this is what communicating looks like.....



I get it now. When you care about someone and you're scared, you don't run away. You stand there (or sit in the far corner with your arms crossed) and battle it out until a mutual understanding is reached. Voices are raised, insults are tossed, attackes are made, tears are shed and somehow you turn a corner and make it out the other side.

MD and I had ourselves a long talk on Saturday night. I have to admit my timing left a lot to be desired.

As is my usual style, I let things brew to a boiling point, so that by the time he walked in the door after a 15 hour work day I was in a state of great agitation. I'm sure my body language was evident of this: Curled up in self protective ball, blank look on my face, flying hands, pointing fingers, crossed arms. It looks like the Ice Queen came out to play.

The gist of our conversation was that he had no idea his behavior was being percieved that way: it was not intentional on his part. He was acting out of fear. I was acting out of fear. The more he held on, the more I pushed away. He didn't think I was listening, I didn't feel understood. And around and around we went.

"That's cold" He said at one point. "I've never seen you so cut off and cold."

"Well, you don't really know me, do you?" I shot back.

"Ouch." He said.

Ouch is right. It was like a ball of ice was sitting in the center of my heart, radiating out to my arms and legs. I actually felt cold, I even started shaking at one point, which freaked him out a bit. My wall was very tall and very dense. I really had no idea that this defense mechanism was that extreme. To MD's credit, he managed to peek over the other side, and target that fact that we both didn't know what we were doing, and were acting stupid because we were scared.

True.

It was finailly agreed on that we would put the breaks on this train. He had discovered that my idea of "romantic" was something diffrent than his. Its a matter of discovering eachother's buttons. I'm a "show, don't tell" person and he's a "tell as much as possible", person. He's going to work on the show, and I'm going to work on taking the telling. Within reason. We down graded each other to "that person I'm seeing" and we're thrilled with this new arrangement.
Now I can breathe

I've never worked so hard on something this new. MD and I both want to give it our best try, because its worth it. Something about this "blooming friendship" as we're calling it, feels really right, and very solid. We talked about building the foundation on solid ground with sturdy bricks and our little fight that evening was part of our new foundation. We can argue, agree, disagree, and move on. I almost feel like an adult.

Almost.

Saturday, February 04, 2006

Don't Stand so Close to Me.....



This will seem like quiet an about face from my last post.

Indeed, things have gone from "hey this is cool" to "danger will robinson, danger!"

The problem is, I'm feeling very overwhellmed. That word isn't strong enough. I'm feeling consumed. Devoured. Pulled in too many directions, clinging onto the pedistol with every once of energy I have that I'm exhasted.

The problem is Mark Darcy. He's a nice guy. He's cute. He's funny. We get along really well. We have fun together. I was seeing something really cool start to unfold. He was "that guy I'm dating" and I was really happy with that. Apparently MD wanted more. A lot more. Really quickly. The whole "boyfriend" thing came up very suddenly. I didn't feel like I had a choice in the matter. So I accepted it, though it doesn't feel honest. But that wasn't enough, infact it was just the beginning.

No matter how much time we spend together, it isn't enough. The day after I had just seen him I would get 3,4, sometimes 6 text messages about how much he missed me, how desperatly he had to see me again. If we lived in diffrent states, it would be sweet. We live in the same city. It isn't sweet at all. Its scary.

I already feel pulled in diffrent directions. I have a very full life right now, my days are spent at work, my evenings writing, attending activist functions, hanging with various friends, making connections with theatres, the list goes on. What was missing was that guy I could bring to various functions. Someone to go on dates with, to sleep over, to have brunch with.....thats what I wanted. Someone to date. I realize that all relationships are complex. They are made up of two people coming together who want something from eachother. I've always called relationships a series of negotiations. There's the give and take, the struggle for understanding, for deffinition, the worry, the retreat, the rush forward. Its a dance. Not always an attractive one, but a dance. The idea is that you should enjoy it. The give and take should theoretically go both ways.

My relationship with MD feels wildly out of balance. He wants and is creating an intense relationsip the likes of which would make Daniel Steele blush. I don't share this mutal intense feeling. I don't pine for him during the day, I don't miss him with an all consuming passion when he's not here. I don't wish him to be my break from reality, nore do I want to be his. In MD's world, this is what is happening. I feel like a fictional character in the play of his life. This isn't any more real than my own fictional dramas.

How is it the one thing I desperatly wanted to break from is the thing I have plowed into head first? I wanted time spent with MD to be real, not filled with his barage of commpliments, his need to mull me at every moment, as though there is no way he could get enough until he somehow melts the two of us together. Its not real, and its not mutal. What started off as a beautiful, slow dance has sped up to an intense tango I can't keep up with. Were there was once attraction, there is only a weariness. I'm just not feeling it right now.

I have discussed this in length with Ms. Creative and Synge, (who now know eachother.) It was like a duel therapy session and I have to say they worked well together as a team. I was able to put constructive words to how I feel and am now prepared to talk to MD. The good moments we have had are worth the effort to save this. I love all the moments that are real and honest, its the fantasy I can't jive with anymore. I hope MD is willing to work on this with me, that he's able to back down and give me the emotional room I need.

As Ms. Creative says, "I can't only take things one step at a time."
As Synge's says, "MD's behavior is not my problem."
As I say, "I will do what feels right for me."

I guess there is no such thing as "a normal guy." I just wish I could finially achieive some sort of balance.