February 27, 2009
I just wanted to take this opportunity to thank you for doing such a good job. The two cases I’m referencing are among my closest friends, people whom I admire, the sort of people I hope to be like when I grow up. To know that each of them has found this kind of happiness, rare and amazing as it is, is a source of happiness for me as well.
So, thanks for that. Please enjoy the contents of the package – merely a small token of my appreciation.
February 26, 2009
Do we have TMI here? Oh, I think we might.
By some standards, I was a late bloomer. That is to say, it was the spring of my junior year of high school, and I’d managed not to lose anything of importance just yet. Well, unless one counts dignity, but I think we all know that’s not what I”m talking about here. To be honest, I’d only dated two people, and the first had lasted all of three weeks, in that way that high school “relationships” do.
So, I was dating a new Boy, Boyfriend the Second. And knowingly being the focus of someone’s attraction was still a relatively new phenomenon. I wasn’t sure what all the rules were, but I definitely knew a few things:
1) My house was within walking distance of school.
2) My dad would not be home until 6 pm.
3) Dr. Taggart usually left the house to hold office hours before class, around 3.
4) These things were all conducive to making out for a little while before I had to start dinner.
So an invitation was extended, a tour of the (empty) house commenced, and ended in my room. He hadn’t managed much more than a few kisses and a line or two from whatever angsty, overwrought poem he was working on at the time, when I heard a small thunk from the direction of the driveway. And then the door opening.
I don’t know what she’d forgotten, but there she was. In the House. And the boy’s moped (yes, I have a long and fraught history of dating absurd characters) was outside – no way to hide him.
“You came over to borrow a CD” I hissed. “Grab something and follow me downstairs!”
Stopping only to make sure my clothes were straight, I ran down the stairs, willing my complexion to stay pale. Which it would have done, except that when we delivered our cover story, Dr. Taggart glanced down at the CD in the boy’s hands.
Not my Pink Floyd double album, not Phish’s ” A Picture of Nectar”, or even my freaking Tori Amos albums. No, he’d taken the soundtrack to The Little Mermaid, which I’d put in a pile of CD’s to give to my ten-year-old cousin.
With faces as red as Ariel’s hair, he mumbled something about a sick little sister, and I said something about seeing him at school sometime. Dr. Taggart just stood there, looking at me. Quietly. Too Quietly.
I slunk upstairs, certain that I’d have no need of a chastity belt until I was thirty-five, at least. The boy and I didn’t date much after that, and I found a boyfriend at another school who was blissfully ignorant of the incident – something I couldn’t say for my classmates.
Although, come to think of it, I think Dr. Taggart did me a favor. Given the boy’s propensity for gossip, this story might have been even more embarrassing, in retrospect, had she *not* come home that afternoon.
**Thanks, DCBlogs, for the link to yesterday’s post!**
February 25, 2009
I really, really wish I could go back in time and inhabit the body of my 5-year-old self so that when my mother told me that I might not always want what I thought I wanted then, I wouldn’t be quite so infuriated at the condescension and presumption that emanated from her words.
Because she was right! I hate it when that happens.
A fairly presumptuous ex-boyfriend once said that he knew two things about me that would always be true – I’d always drink whiskey sours, and I’d always smoke Marlboro Lights.
I haven’t had either in … eight years?
But I guess what I don’t understand, and might envy a little, is the absolute certainty with which some people state their life goals. How can you possibly know that you will always want something? I think it’s possible to make that a goal (I see marriage as an agreement to do everything you can to make sure you want each other for the rest of your lives), but I don’t know that there’s anything I could guarantee I’d want forever.
Which has led to two problems – one, a lack of ambition. If you’re not sure that you’ll still want something in the long run, is it really worth putting that much effort into it now?
And two, a serious case of indecision.
So how do I get past this, and figure out maybe one or two things that I’m allowed to want forever?
February 24, 2009
Alternate title: Why Karma’s not speaking to me right now
I have a confession to make – I’ve been unfaithful. It’s just… she can be so negative all the time. And sure, I deserve it, but sometimes a girl just wants a little pick-me-up!
So I’ve been talking to The Universe. Rather, The Universe has been talking to me – sending me these nice little daily reminders of my goals, snippets of encouragement, that sort of thing. It’s NICE, and I LIKE IT.
Like today’s, which sent a little warm fuzzy through me:
Why is it that so often, Dagny, those who are extremely successful in virtually everything they do are so unable to see that this is the case?
Yeah, you might not be the right person to ask.
I love dragonflies –
So I smiled, finished drying my hair, and commenced my commute through the frigid air, a little less disgruntled than usual. Until I, for no apparent reason other than ruining a perfectly good mood, remembered this other little fragment of wisdom, from an entirely different source:
I’m starting to suspect sabotage on her part. That’ll teach me to talk to other abstract concepts.
February 20, 2009
I’m going to be kicking booty and taking names over the weekend. Exactly what I’ll do with the names when I have them? Undetermined.
This was pretty fun to do. I highly recommend it.
February 19, 2009
The next time I whine, just smack me, mmkay?
I *can* talk about money woes. These are entirely of my own making – I am terrible at managing money and have a bad habit of shopping to alleviate a bad mood. While I’m not entirely certain what it is that I’d need to do to be better at it, I must be doing something wrong, because all around me I see people who are able to take vacations and go out frequently and do all kinds of things, seemingly without any of the money stress I experience regularly.
And part of it might be because I’m lazy. I don’t want to work a second job – it really is a draining experience when I do it, but at the same time, it’s a lot easier than any of the other options when it comes to atoning for my overindulgence.
And if I start to complain about it, would someone just remind me that I’m lucky to have the option of working extra to pay off my debts? To have the opportunity to continue to live comfortably and take really fun trips? So many people don’t have that option right now – I’m going to take it and make the most of it.
Even if that means kicking my own posterior from time to time.
February 18, 2009
a metric ton of stuff in my head, none of which is appropriate for the sharing right now.
But if you look outside, and you see the weather that’s out there? Picture a skyful of that compressed into one personal-sized raincloud, following me around like it’s auditioning for a job as my personal Glum machine, and that seems to be my day right now.
I’m just going to push this incredibly tedious work project off to the side for a few minutes, and think about sunny skies, clear water, and happy times. Might be six months away, but at least it’s something to look forward to.
February 11, 2009
I’m still sick, so forgive me any greater-than-usual lapses in clarity.
Once upon a time, I was in a really tough position. I had a Massive Crush on a friend of mine. A friend who had told me, in exactly so many words, that the crush would not ever be reciprocated. Ever. Which left me with two choices:
1) Selfishly continue to pursue my own, admittedly fruitless, agenda;
2) Continue to be an actual friend to this person.
I chose number 2, consciously. And I tried to make sure that my actions reflected as much. There was one conversation, though, where I nearly had myself convinced that confessing my feelings would be the best thing for both of us. I was thisclose to saying something out loud, to genuinely believing that the best decision for him was to make a completely informed decision, to knowing all of the options on the table.
I never said it all the way, out loud. And I am thoroughly convinced now, that keeping my mouth shut was by far the best thing I could have done, despite the infinite contortions of rationalization I had managed at the time.
People can convince themselves of a lot of different things. That they have the best of intentions, that they didn’t mean any harm. Oftentimes, these statements are true, as far as they go. But the best of intentions doesn’t always mean a lack of harm.
February 9, 2009
It can happen. I’ve seen it happen. I”m currently the beneficiary of a few such friendships. Not, it should be noted, with anyone I’ve dated seriously (though the ex-fiancé and his wife would be happy to see me, I think, if I ventured into their neck of the woods).
Friendship is a relationship, just like dating, engagement, and marriage are relationships. This means that for the relationship to be a good fit, for things to work, one needs to have respect, some amount of things in common, and some degree of trust. The first and the last are generally where things go wrong in any kind of relationship.
A lot of people feel that friendship has a different set of boundaries than romantic relationships. And if you’ve ended your romantic association and want to be friends afterwards, it’s likely you make that distinction, as well. So the first rule? Respect each other’s boundaries.
You might not always know what that person’s boundaries are, especially if you didn’t know each other before you dated, or date for very long. If that’s the case, then just tread carefully. Ask questions if you want to know something, but be prepared to accept a non-answer. And accept that non-answer gracefully. This gives you more information about what kind of friendship the other person deems acceptable, and then you have the option of deciding whether or not you want to participate.
As with any other relationship, it’s helpful to remind yourself that the other person’s choices aren’t wrong. They get to do what is best for them, and set boundaries that allow them to live as angst-free as possible. So when someone says, “The kinds of friends I want to have wouldn’t say that/share that/treat me like that”, your only respectful choices are to say, “Okay, I’ll try not to do that again,” or “I don’t really think we can maintain the kind of friendship I’d like to have, then.”
If someone didn’t respect you when you were dating, it’s going to be hard to establish that respect as friends.