Saturday, December 27, 2003

I picked up the Bridget Jones soundtrack the other day. It jives well with me.
I knew the signs, it wasn't right
I was stupid for a while
Swept away by you
and now I feel like a fool

So confused, my heart's bruised
Was I ever loved by you?

Out of reach, so far
I never had your heart
Out of reach, couldn't see
we were never meant to be

Catch myself from despair
I could drown if I stay here
Keeping busy every day
I know I will be okay

But I was so confused
my heart's bruised
Was I ever loved by you?

Out of reach, so far
I never had your heart
Out of reach, couldn't see
we were never meant to be

So much hurt, so much pain
Takes a while to regain what is lost inside
And I hope that in time, you'll be out of my mind
and I'll be over you

But now I'm so confused
my heart's bruised
Was I ever loved by you?

Out of reach, so far
I never had your heart
Out of reach, couldn't see
we were never meant to be

Out of reach, so far
you never gave your heart
In my reach, I can see
there's a life out there for me

- Gabrielle, "Out of Reach"
My dog got in big trouble today.

We heard a knock on the door, so I went to answer it. Turns out the postman had dropped a package for me in front of the doo rather than dropping it by the mailboxesr, had knocked to alert me, and was walking away. This would all have been fine and dandy except that Louie bolted out the door, barking like a mad dog, and chased the mailman down the hallway.

The mailman ran. The dog chased, barking and growling. The mailman looked scared and continued running. I yelled to my dog to stop and sit, and I chased the dog. I caught the dog. I scolded the dog. The mailman gave me an extraordinarily unhappy look and left.

Bad dog, Louie. Not cool at all.
Love, I am so different
Love, I am so different
Love, I am so different than before

Love, can I be loved?
Love, could I ever really be loved?
Love, if you ever find me
I wonder
will you try me?
I’m so different than before

Love, the kind that I dream of
It starts right here inside of me, love
Love, if you ever find me, I wonder, will you try me?
I’m so different than before
Love, I am so different than before

Love I am so different
Love I am so different

Love, where are you waiting?
In dark and smoky rooms I hear you singing to me
Love, let my voice take you
And the songs we’d make would be so different than before
Oh yes my love, if you ever find me, then I ask you try me -
I’m so different than before
Love, I am so different than before

Love I am so different
Oh, oh so different
So, so different
I am so different
Love I am so different than before

The word is out, the time has come
Begin again and reinvent my love
Make it strong with arms so long
It stretchin' out to everyone
And nothing replace this blissed out space
This is what I wanted, this is what I made
Every little thing’s gonna be all right
One day soul mate, you’ll be mine

Love, this time you won’t mistake me
I’m ready, love, for you to take me with you
Love, if you ever find me, I wonder - will you try me?
I’m so different than before
Oh yes my love, I know when you’ve found me,
You’ll wrap yourself all around me
Oh, so different than before
Oh yes my love, I know you will show me,
In words you’ve never told me
So different than before

Love I am so different
Oh, oh so different
So, so different
Mmm, so different
So, so different -
Love I am so different than before

- Rosey, "Love"

I'm forever getting my hopes up about stupid or unlikely things. Every time, I feel slightly surprised even as I am let down.

Why don't I learn better? What prevents me from being more realistic?

Friday, December 26, 2003

I just finished watching Jerry Maguire. Mary and I started it together, but she left partway through to go ice skating with friends and I decided to finish it on my own.

At the end, I was left feeling introspective, contemplative. Movies like that leave me wanting to be a better person. Certain books sometimes have the same effect. They make me want to approach life in different, more effective ways. I want to rethink what I put into my work and into my day-to-day life. Even moreso, I want to rethink my approach to my personal relationships.

Sometimes I tsucessfully act on the inspiration. Things feel so much better when I do, and I can feel healing and growth in my relationships. Unfortunately, it never lasts. Somehow I always fall back into the same old stagnant patterns. Strangely enough, in Jerry Maguire a bit character had a line that touched on that topic; she asserted that it's hard to change behavioral patterns because our neural pathways have already been formed in certain ways. That may be so, but I don't think it has to constrain me. I just need to find a way to hold on to inspiration, to remember it even after the initial glow has faded.
On the topic of personal hells, sent to me by a friend:
"God does not punish us; we punish ourselves. Those who are in hell are there by their own choice. Indeed, they could walk right out of it if they so chose, except that their values are such as to make the path out of hell appear overwhelmingly dangerous, frighteningly painful, and impossibly difficult. So they remain in hell because it seems safe and easy to them. They prefer it that way. This situation and the psychodynamics involved were the subject of C. S. Lewis' fine book The Great Divorce. The notion that people are in hell by their own choice is not widely familiar, but the fact is that it is both good psychology and good theology."

M. Scott Peck MD, People of the Lie
I had a nightmare again last night. The theme this night centered around betrayal.

How do you deal with feeling betrayed?

Moving on seems the only sane thing to do. It's hard though, because you want to feel, at least, that the person who betrayed you knows that they have hurt you. You want it to matter to them. But if you focus on that, if you spend energy dwelling on what they have done that was unjust or unkind, wishing they noticed or cared, then you never move on. You get caught up in your own little personal hell. Worse, it becomes more of your own making than theirs. They carry on as they would anyhow, seemingly impervious.

Brutus and Judas Iscariot both showed guilt, compassion, and sorrow after their crimes of betrayal, but these are highly dramatized characters painted in an ideal light. I cannot assume that they have any real bearing on the smaller interactions of people like you and I. It is unfounded for me to presume that, for simply having hurt me, anyone would feel the same sort of guilt and sorrow.
Louie and I watched part of Winged Migration while I was trying to fall asleep again this morning. Beautiful screen shots! Louie gives it five stars; he has never been more interested in anything that I've played on my television. He watched intently for all the while it was playing! It was actually a little strange, as I've never really seen a dog watch TV before.
This insomnia thing is getting old. I mean, really, what sort of normal person wants to be up, all alone, at 4:00 AM?

Thursday, December 25, 2003

Yes, Andrew, solitude builds character. I am sure you will all be amazed, next time you see me, at how my character has grown and matured in such a short time. ;-)

Anyhow, Miles will be out of the bathroom in a moment, and then it's back to Bridget Jones's Diary. Serious business, this movie.
Miles isn't going to be here for another 50 minutes. This has felt like one of the longest days in memory.
Nobody's online.

I guess I'm not surprised; it is Christmas, after all. It just makes me feel a little bit more lonely. This is the first Christmas day ever that I've spent alone, you know? They weren't always spent with my family -- sometimes I spent them with the family of the boy I was dating -- but they were always spent surrounded by people and good cheer.

I called Miles to see what he's up to, but he's not answering his phone. I guess I'll just go back to reading my book.

Merry Christmas, all. Ciao.
During a nap just now, I dreamed that my birds were attacked by four different raptors, and a barn owl punctured Pookie's chest with one of his feet and claws. I was rushing her to the vet when I woke up.

Always with the nightmares.
Someone from my apartment building found my blog last week when googling for information about the accident out in front of our building. What a small world.
It sure has been a long time since I've made it to the dog park. Louie had a glorious time chasing around with all the other pups, playing in the mud, splashing in the river. He was so excited that he had a long string of drool swinging from his chin for most of the outing. We had a good time, though, and I think I got a few good pictures.

The drive over was a little long. I'm glad I moved into the city; if I hadn't, I don't think I'd be dancing so much anymore. It's just too much of a commute.
Merry Christmas to my dog! I'm taking him to the dog park; we haven't been there for quite some time.
Yay for Jewish friends. In response to my sad entry last night, Miles wrote and said that he would watch a movie or two with me tonight if I were interested. It's not quite the same as having my family here still, or having a boyfriend to take me in and make me a part of their family celebration (although I am very happy and excited for Mary) -- in fact, it has nothing to do with celebrating Christmas at all, but it's also not sitting at home lonely.
Nightmares again last night. I dreamed that I found a half-naked, semi-conscious young girl in a field behind a university building, covered in blood and mucus, having been raped. She was muttering something about a 2 year old, leading me to believe that she had gotten into this condition trying to help a tiny child who was being terribly abused.

I had been walking with someone and got them to sit with her, and I then ran to the security desk in the building to call 911. I kept trying to call 911, but it kept going to civilian phones, and more than that, to people I knew. To the voicemail of friends, to my family. And they were alll being unhelpful, shallow, saying poisonous things. Then there were people who, instead of helping, were just standing around disparaging the girl. I was so desperate to get her help but could not manage it.

Why do I dream things like that? I'm still a little tense, even though I've been awake 15-20 min.
My family leaves tomorrow morning. I'm a little bummed already. I'm going to make the most of the rest of the time we have; I decided to stay the night at my aunt's house. After I finish this entry I'm going to head upstairs to stay up late and watch movies with Susie.

Tomorrow, all my friends are busy celebrating with their own families. Mary will be off at Christmas dinner with her boyfriend and his family. I, however, have nowhere to go and nobody to spend the time with. It will be a lonely Christmas, especially after all the good company and companionship I've had these last few days. I'm not looking forward to it.
Another good day! Except for being so tired. My lesson with Jaimes was great. Went shopping in the afternoon -- good company, but it took a long time and I was quite late meeting up with my family. It all worked out well, though. We had an enjoyable time opening gifts together. Mary made Christmas Eve dinner -- it was scrumptious! Turkey, stuffing, gravy, cranberry sauce, corn casserole, scalloped potatoes, blueberry pie, and cherry pie. Yum! Then we played games; fun, as always. Mike came over late in the evening and joined up in the games, which was nice. And I remembered to take pictures! Not as much as I would have liked, but still more than not at all.

Wednesday, December 24, 2003

How am I going to get up in 5 hours? I'm glad I don't suffer from insomnia often, because I dislike it tremendously. The nights awake are lonely, and the days are long and tedious because I'm so tired.

On that note, I'm off to attempt sleep again. Goodnight, world.
Merciful Jury Spares Evil Malvo From Death, reads one of the current headlines from the New York Post. The article itself is worse.

"Evil Malvo"? Granted, he did terrible, terrible things, but what is up with the prejudicial way in which the media phrases things these days? I've had enough of "reign of terror", "axis of evil", "enemy combatants", "war of liberation", "war on terror", and over-use and application of terms such as terror and evil in general, whether applied to Malvo, Iraq, or anything else. That sort of language seems to be thrown about with wild abandon. I can read about the sniper shootings and about Malvo's trial and determine for myself that he did horrible things; I don't need for it to be spoon-fed to me. This isn't news -- it is sensationalistic propaganda.

Brian Eno posted a column along some of the same lines in the Guardian a while back. Decent reading.
Wallmart makes me sad.
I had a Tango lesson on Monday night, in which we spent the majority of the time doing Yoga and various other exercises to build up my center. We did very little Tango at all. It was good for me, though. Frustrating. I hadn't realized how weak I really am in my core. After the lesson I went back to Sonny's, and even with that short workout my dancing felt so much better to me. Perhaps it was due to a heightened awareness of my center.

Sometime in the near future, I plan to take up Yoga as a new hobby. Jaimes and his cohorts go to a studio in Ravenna that they like, and Dano attends a program that meets early every morning at a studio near my apartment. I'll dabble in both for a while, unless I find right away that I prefer one to the other.
It's a strange world.

When we went out into the alley behind my building to get my car today, we found a pile of charred woodchips. A neighbor told me that some homeless folk built a small fire last night, right there in the alley, and cooked steaks over it. I am glad for them, whoever they are, that they had a good meal this week.
I heard on the radio today that the jury for Malvo recommended life imprisonment without parole. They did not impose the death penalty. Several times, the broadcaster indicated that this may have had something to do with the timing of the verdict, that capital cases tried over the week of Christmas tend not to do as well and penalties imposed are generally less harsh.

Why is it that it has to be the week of Christmas for a jury to revere life and choose to be compassionate? Why can we not act with such thoughts on our mind every day throughout the year?
Tonight, I took my family to Rom Mai Thai on Broadway. We ordered a number of dishes I had never tried, as well as the favorite standards; Chicken Satay, Beef Panang, and Swimming Tofu. They were all delightful! The staff, as always, was incredibly warm and friendly. I felt warm, happy, content -- strongly connected again, for a moment, to a family that has been slipping away over the years.


Last week, I picked up a disposable camera so that I could take pictures while my family was here. I keep forgetting to bring it along. I find myself constantly bemoaning that oversight, as the last several days have been some of the best in memory. So many moments to treasure. Without photographs I am left to rely on memory alone, and my memory is not to be trusted.

I guess that's not quite true; I'm left also with short journal entries like this one. So, to myself, when I read this again some day -- remember the goodness of this Christmas vacation. Don't get stuck on the petty disappointments and the "could have been's"; instead keep in your mind all the good times that you've had with people you care about. Apples to Apples at Karen's house, with mommy, daddy, Mary, Susie, Karen, Andy, and both the Alex's. Lord of the Rings as a big happy group. Hours spent wandering around in the craft store; mommy, Alex, Mary, Susie and I all equally enchanted. The rack of stuffed Audubon birds that delighted even my father. The first day, eating at IHOP after Mary and I picked everybody up from the airport; okay food, but wonderful company, the five of us all reunited for the first time since last year. Eating, laughing, exchanging jokes and affectionate insults, enjoying the proximity of each other. Making soap with mommy, Mary, and Susie -- watching Mary become enthralled with the process, simple joy evident on her face. Louie getting into the soap I made for Karen, trying to eat each piece, only to decide it didn't taste as good as it smelled and moving on to try eating the next. Movies at Karen's house; snuggled in all cozy with one another, watching the extend version of Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring and Finding Nemo. My parents, my sisters, and I all squishing into the car along with my dog, both the first day on the way from the airport, and today on the way to and from the ferry.

These are the things that I hope I remember. Every day this week has been Christmas to me, filled with so many people I love and with such good spirit. My only regret is that I could not share it with everybody I love, that some people I would have here have not been.

Today on the ferry, I went up to the top level and struggled against the wind. It buffeted my body, whipped my hair all about me in a wild frenzy.

I stopped struggling. At this, it took hold of me and embraced me. The more I leaned into it, the more it cradled me. I leaned forward into it, then backwards. Slowly, I walked backwards into it, leaning against it, letting it hold my weight. A feeling of euphoria overtook me. All that I knew was the wind. It was all that I could feel, all that mattered. The wind held me. It toyed with me, teased me, but also comforted me and followed through on all promise. It led me in an intimate dance, singularly brushing away all other thought.

Tuesday, December 23, 2003

You know when someone stands you up and doesn't even bother to call or send a note to offer an explanation and/or an apology? It sucks.

18 hours now without either; I guess that means neither is forthcoming. I don't know why I continue to let myself care.
Ferry = fun! Louie wasn't crazy about the big motors, though.

A flock of hopefull seagulls flew alongside the boat. Very cute.
I'm not good at waiting. My family's still sleeping and puttering the day away at my aunt's house, and I've been up for hours. Why aren't they ready? Aren't they excited? :)
LotR: RotK was excellent. I still like the first movie best, though.

Today, going riding on ferries. Maybe even up to the San Juan islands, although I don't know that we're quite that ambitious.

Monday, December 22, 2003

Today my family and I are going to see Lord of the Rings: Return of the King. Woo hoo! I'm excited, despite my ire at learning that they cut out Saruman completely. Stupid cutting choices. At least he'll be in the extended version, although it'll be another year before I get to see that.
I'm really glad my family is here. The last two days have been wonderful! The next three days will be more of the same, I'm sure, up until we drop them at the airport -

After that, I'm afraid this will be a long break. There is the chance that it may drag on unpleasantly, seem never to end, all the more so because I had expected it to fly by in a wash of colors and good feeling, a series of moments I would want to hold on to always and treasure forever. I never thought I'd say this, but I think I'm glad I'll be back at work the first part of next week.
Imagine that you're involved with someone. Say, then, that the people closest to them dislike you, and they do nothing about it. They don't defend you, they don't stick up for you, they don't even tell their loved ones, "I'm involved with so-and-so, so you need to deal with that and you need to act decently toward them." Instead, they avoid the issue. They try to keep their involvement with you low profile. They don't really talk about how involved with you they are or don't mention the involvement altogether. They blow you off sometimes when it might mean letting the disapproving friends and family know about the extent of their involvement with you, when it might mean facing up to their disapproval.

Is that cause for offense?

Is it cause to think that perhaps something is wrong, that perhaps something was always wrong? Is it a possible indication of a lack of care and concern for you and your feelings?

Is it nothing to worry about? Maybe things are just like that, sometimes, and it doesn't mean anything at all.

Should one expect that people they are involved with will defend them to friends and family, advocate for those friends and family to like or at least act civilly toward you? Or would an expectation like that be out of line?
I let myself think that things are a certain way just because I want them to be that way, even when I know somewhere deep down that they aren't true. If ever I do face up, for a moment, to the un-truth of my beliefs, there's this little voice in my head telling me that I can make it true; that if I try hard enough I can sway it over, I can make it all happen the way I want it to. I can be enough and do enough to make it work, to make it into what I want it to be and what, generally, I even let myself believe it to be.

Why do I do that?

Why is my grasp on reality so far off?

Why do I keep doing that, even when I can see that I do it?

Why do I want things so badly, even when I know I can't have them, especially when I know I can't have them? Am I some sort of masochist?

I'm so scared. I'm scared to lose things, scared to lose opportunities, scared to lose people, even when I actually never really had them. I'm frightened out of my wits at letting go of my illusions, because what if they really weren't illusions, and, in letting go, I am actually giving up my only chance at making it work? But if I really have just been deceiving myself, then that's an illusion in itself, isn't it. And yet I cling so hard, and I can't let go for all the "what if's".