Saturday, October 25, 2003

The workshop today was awesome! I am so sore now. A good sore, though. I learned a lot, and Mario and Cynthia showed us a number of exercises that, if I start doing them regularly, should help me to become more responsive with my dancing and to have more control over my movent.

A little while into the workshop, I got into a tiff with the new Tango buddy over rotating. He didn't want to rotate partners. I did. I can see his point of view. He says he can see mine as it applies to Swing or Salsa, but claims that Tango is different.

We did rotate.

He seemed to really like me the other night. At the end of the night, after the Salsa dance, he tried to kiss me. Between me not being receptive then and the difference of opinion today, I don't think he likes me quite as much now. He is still friendly and civil, though.
I close my eyes, only for a moment
and the moment's gone.
All my dreams
pass before my eyes -
a curiousity.
Jaimes and I were talking about friendship tonight. I asked if he kept in touch with old friends that live far away, and he said, "No, I don't need to." He told me that the friendships feel like they extend outside this lifetime, that whenever they do see other again and it's like they were never apart. They don't need the communication for the times between because those times don't matter -- they are only part of this life, and the friendship is more than that.

I don't know why, but I really liked the way he described it. I'm hardly doing his words justice -- I wish my memory were better so that I could more aptly convey the beauty of his idea and the way he described it.
Fried calamari - yum. I had it for the first time tonight.

Unfortunately, I was allergic to something at dinner, and being a new food, the calamari is a good bet. Oh well. It was so good it was worth it.

Friday, October 24, 2003

I'm clean and happy this morning. I love the feeling where my face is all tight from a recent washing. Adding to that, my hair smells good from this morning's shampoo, and my new conditioner has made it extra-soft. Clothes all clean and soft, everything smells good and feels good. It's a great way to start the day.
I was really depressed earlier tonight. I left in the middle of my swing class; didn't want to be around people anymore. Came home, indulged in some self-pity, had a good cry, took the dog on a walk.

Then, instead of going back to the swing dance, I went to a tango practice. I felt I needed to get out again, but didn't want to be around too many people that I knew. Needed to break my routine, shake things up.

The first hour and a half of tango was utterly boring. There was nobody I knew there. Worse, there was hardly anyone there at all, so nobody to watch. Finally, though, people started showing. I watched some good dances. Then a friendly guy named George asked me to dance. Turns out he also works at Company_B, and knows people from both my old group and my current group. He also used to do Lindy. He liked my dancing and had a pleasant lead, so we danced for a good long while. The first few dances left room to be desired -- I'm so rusty -- but by the last few I was picking it up again. George was impressed enough that he asked me to partner with him for a fairly advanced Tango workshop this weekend. Good times. Then Jaimes showed up and he and I danced the last few dances of the night. Had some awesome, awesome dances; my best tangos so far, perhaps.

Tango ends early, so George asked if I'd like to go along Salsa dancing with him after. Jaimes teased me a little about that, saying that I have some sort of magnetism.

Honestly, I take rejection really poorly. I take it personally. I internalize it, am self-deprecating, come to believe that I'm not good enough, that nobody wants to be close to me, and that the people that are close to me won't always be; eventually they'll wise up and reject me as well. I've been doing that to myself lately. So for someone new to show interest in me -- it shocked me. I haven't been looking for new people to be close to for some time. I assumed nobody would want to be anyway, given a choice.

Then here is Jaimes, all friendly again like he never left, and now here's this new guy who likes me and wants to spend time with me. I felt like I'd finally opened my eyes after sleeping for a long time and the light was blinding me. All the constructs I've been building up recently were suddenly turned inside out, all because I put myself into a new situation and met some new people.

Anyhow, I told George that I would go Salsa dancing, but I needed to stop by the swing dance first and make sure everything was okay there, make sure someone was set to lock up and such. He decided to came with me and we hung out at the swing dance for a little while. I had some good dances there, too, but fled pretty quickly partly because I didn't want to make George wait too long, partly because I still wanted to get away from familiar situations, people I knew. Still feeling a little emotionally tumultuous, and needed the shock of a new environment to keep me from falling back into a depressive state.

So we made it to Salsa. (This was my first Salsa dance ever.) So many people, so loud, so much alcohol, such a different atmosphere. Sensory overload. It is a bit of the meat market I'd heard it rumored to be. George and I danced the rest of the evening together. It took a long time for me to catch on to the movement of Salsa -- so different from Tango or Swing -- although George said he was really impressed at how quickly I dropped the Swing movement that didn't belong and picked up the Salsa movement. By the end of the night I think I was really starting to get it. I'm sore in places that Tango and Swing never cause to be sore. My lower back hurts, maybe from all the hip movement. My legs hurt in different regions than I'm used to. I feel good now though. Tired out. Content.

I saw several people at Salsa that used to Lindy but haven't been around for months or even years. Just disappeared off the face of the planet for all we knew, but apparently just went over to Salsa. Dorks.

So I'm going to do a Tango workshop this weekend. Joy. And I have Salsa to play more with. And a new friend. And going to have lunch with Jaimes sometime soon. I'm also going to get together with Kristi again tomorrow night! Yay. And it's the weekend, so I'll see lots of Alex and Mary.

I'm still feeling down, but there's so much goodness in my life as well. Bittersweet. I'm glad for tonight.

Thursday, October 23, 2003

Peeve: My officemate often locks his computer and leave the office, with his music still playing loudly over his headphones.
I deal poorly with rejection.

You know those sad, desperate figures in novels and movies who can't move on, who lose all sense of dignity in constant desperate attempts to mend relationships that are unsalvageable? You watch and you think, "What is wrong with that woman -- how can she be so stupid? Does she have no sense of reality?"

That is what I become when I am rejected.

I read some article a while back that asserted that gifted children, upon reaching adulthood, have more trouble than anyone else in dealing with failure and rejection. Because they were able to achieve anything they wanted to as children, they fail to develop adequate coping skills for coming in second or third or for being turned entirely away. Failures that wouldn't phase other adults can be devastating to the now-grown-gifted-child.

Emotionally, perhaps I am that like that. Maybe for much of my life I was always able to gain people's affection if I wanted it, to convince them that they should accept mine if I decided to give it. I was never the rejectee, only the rejector. I made the choice. And now, when all of a sudden I am in a situation where that is not the case, when I'm not able to make things work even if I want them to work, when someone makes a conscious decision to reject my affection, I wig out. I am unable to understand. It is new, uncharted territory and it scares me, so I act irrationally.

Or maybe I am over-analyzing, rationalizing, so as not to accept responsibility, and I actually am unbalanced. Maybe I tend toward the pathetic for no fathomable reason -- everyone has personality flaws, and this is one of mine.

I don't want to be this way. I want not to care. I want to be the balanced, healthy, strong character in the book that people aspire to become, instead of the desperate figure who lends drama to the story. I've had enough of drama.
A friend planned to come out and visit me in a week and a half. We haven't been getting along lately, but he had said that he might still come out to visit regardless.

I've been trying to get him to confirm since this last weekend. I expicitly asked for an answer on Tuesday, and he said I had to wait 48 hours for him to think things through. During that time something came up on the planned weekend that I'd really like to attend, but I waited in good faith for the friend to get back to me so that I could still give him the time if he came out.

I just found out that he actually cancelled the plane tickets on Monday, but didn't bother to tell me until now.

I feel hurt, angry, strung along. And he thinks I am "twisting reality", that it's unfair of me to be upset at him.
When he's not on the phone about his various ailments, he's on the phone with other firms discussing other job opportunities. Why doesn't he just take one of them and get it over with?

Tuesday, October 21, 2003

I went out and talked things over with my guitar teacher over drinks and quesadillas. The upshot is that we're going to stop with the lessons until I get my routine down and start finding some time to practice again.

Never enough time in my day...

Monday, October 20, 2003

Dancing in the Dark

Tonight I was about to leave the dance at Sonny's when the power went out. The music died and the room went dark. We all stood there in shock, and then all of a sudden were serenaded. Kevin Buster had busted out his saxophone and played a really danceable "I'm Beginning to See the Light". So we all danced in the dark.

He only played the one song, and then people stood around again. Some got silly and danced to the tune of their cellphone ringers. Some danced to the beat of their own drum. A few did the big apple. A few enterprising souls dug up some flashlights so that the room was dimly lit.

Then Alex, who was DJing, procured a boombox and batteries, and started DJing again. The atmosphere, the feeling in the room was just awesome. I stayed a few songs more, even though I had meant to leave even before the power went out. Finally I gave up and left -- I was so tired and needed to get home -- but everyone there was still dancing away in the dark. Pretty damn cool.
On dates, if my date goes to the bathroom, I will occasionally take the time to go, as well. It's a nice little moment to myself.

That doesn't work when your date is the same sex as you.

You don't want to take a quick break to freshen up and preen in the bathroom if your date is in the bathroom with you.

Worse yet, you don't want to GO to the bathroom when your date is in the bathroom with you. What kind of crazy first date is that?

So many complications that never occurred to me prior to tonight...
". . .you need to move on. that person is not interested in your friendship. getting angry won't help," says johnboy.

It sounds so easy, but in practice is so hard. I suck at moving on.
Imagine that you're not getting along especially well with someone.

Imagine also that they've been off on a trip, travelling in a problem-ridden car that has recently been stalling a lot and has been displaying brake light problem indicators.

Imagine that you don't hear anything from them after their trip, and you start to worry a little bit about their safety. More time goes by, and still you don't hear anything. Finally you send an email and leave a phone message, both saying, "Hey, can you just send me a quick response to let me know that you got home okay?" Still, no response. Hours go by. You know that, in the course of this person's daily routine, they would have seen at least the email by this point in time.

At what point is it okay to respond with anger instead of (or in addition to) relief when you finally do hear back from them?

Is it reasonable to be angry when somebody knew that you were worried about them and did not respond so that you could stop worrying? Is it still reasonable to be angry even if you and they were not getting along, and they would have preferred to just avoid communication with you?

Yeah. So I've been worrying about someone, and finally recieved a non-chalant, vaguely cold response from them indicating that they are alright. So I'm a little mixed up about what I'm feeling, and not sure that it's all so very reasonable. Blah.
At NYU, the main campus library is a number of stories high -- 15? 20? -- with an open atrium in the middle. Each floor has a balcony surrounding the atrium so that you can look down all the way to the ground floor.

I remember the main floor of the atrium having an odd pattern. From way up high it acts as an optical illusion, making it seem as if sharp points are sticking up at you. The railings surrounding the balcony on each level have a little cross design at the top of each rail bar. Rumor had it that they had done all of this to keep people from jumping to their death from the upper levels. Students might contemplate jumping, but the crosses and the apparent spikes would make them think twice. I always thought that was bunk, just an urban legend passed around to all new freshman.

Turns out two students have leapt to their death from those balconies just this year alone, so maybe there was more to the rumors than I had thought. Creepy.

They are apparently going to install glass barriers around the balconies now, so that jumping will no longer be possible. It's sad that they have to do that -- the building was really awe-inspiring as it was and looking down from above over the railing was quite an experience -- but perhaps it is for the better.

Sunday, October 19, 2003

Don't ever eat at the IHOP at 950 E Madison Street in Seattle. Sketch-city.

Mary and I ate there earlier this week. She's a big pancake fan. Most of our friends are anti-IHOP, so we figured since we were eating on our own, it would be a good opportunity to do the IHOP-thing. We went to one I'd never been to -- I didn't even know it existed, even though it's only 10 blocks or so from my home, until I looked it up on the web.

Poor choice.

First, the people there were sketchy.

Second, there was no music. That doesn't sound like anything big, but it felt so strange. No background sound. It felt almost ominous.

Despite all that, the food seemed pretty good, and we had a good time playing Canasta before and after our meal. We brought the leftovers home, gave them to my dog, and went our separate ways.

You'd think that would be the end of the story, right?


The next day after a really long day at work, I came home to find an explosion of dog diarrhea all over the living room floor. It took 2 hours of intense cleaning to clean it all up. First there was the dog shit, then Mike called and gave me a tremendous amount of grief on the phone. Great way to end an already rotten evening. All in all it ended up being one of the unhappiest, most unpleasant nights I can remember ever having.

What does that have to do with IHOP?

I found out the next day that Mary had spent the entire night and day after the IHOP dinner throwing up with nasty stomach cramps. We think it was the sausage, since that's the only thing I didn't eat at all that both she and the dog ate. Stupid IHOP food poisoning.

Poor sister. Poor dog. Not cool.
Oh, I am a lonely painter
I live in a box of paints
I'm frightened by the devil
and I'm drawn to those ones that ain't afraid

I remember that time that you told me,
you said, "Love is touching souls" -
Surely you touched mine,
'cause part of you pours out of me
in these lines from time to time
I meant to blog a few weeks ago about a bus experience I had. I sat down, and as the bus was taking off the man sitting next to me broke down into a series of hacking coughs. He kept coughing, over and over; the man was unwell.

I did not want to get myself sick. I felt almost some sort of revulsion. But I also did not want to appear rude. There were other open seats on the bus, and part of me wanted to just get up and move. I did not move, however. I stayed where I was for the entire bus ride, just breathing air more from the aisle than from the still coughing man beside me.

I did get off a stop or two earlier than I meant to, and just walked the extra distance.

Would it have been rude to change seats when it became apparent that the man was ill?

Was it worse to stay in the seat when I did not want to be there?

When did I get to be so discriminating? It felt out of perspective. So the man had a cold or something... I'm healthy and my immune system is working well. Sitting in the seat next to him should not have bothered me nearly as much as it did. I still feel bothered by the strength of my reaction.
I was thinking, the other day, that if I make it to 30 and there's nobody I can imagine settling down with to start a family, I might just have and raise a child on my own. Sort of my own My Best Friend's Wedding deal, but with a twist and with no man involved.

Does that seem so strange? It feels... scandalous. If I chose to do that, I think it would worry my family. At least some of my friends would worry, as well. Yet, women raise children on their own in this society all the time today, many of them not nearly as well off as I am now and as I anticipate being at that point in my life.
I was digging around through some file archives for old finance files and ran across some papers Jeremy had been editing on my computer back in November of 1999 -- work was doing on his undergraduate thesis, apparently. I don't know why, but my heart got a little caught up in my throat. My, how time changes everything.
On my way home from Ultimate today, I stopped by Best Buy and purchased Quicken. I'd been planning to get it for a while, but just hadn't gotten around to it. After an hour or two playing with it I still have a number of transactions and accounts to enter into the system, but I think I've entered enough for it to be a pretty accurate high level overview of my finances.

If I owe you money (you know who you are), I've entered you into the program. It's now official. Rest assured I will pay you back, because my net worth/assets/liabilities chart makes me sad and I've got to fix it.
Today, in the grand tradition of all my ultimate games so far with ALLCAPS, someone from the other team was injured during each game. Bad Karma or something.

We played a double header and lost both games, but we played well and both games were close. The first team had great spirit. The second team was rather snipey and petty about stupid little things, which was sad considering they have some of the longest running and more visible DiscNW folk on their team.

We got jerseys today. Well, not so much "Jerseys" as "T-Shirts sporting the logo from our web page", but they were still pretty snazzy. Bright blue. Sexy. Too bad the season is almost over, with only one more regularly scheduled game and the playoffs left.