Category Archives: Life

My kingdom, such as it is, for a Xanax.

In which it’s the time of year known as ‘omfg i HATE the dread!!!’.

About once a year or so, usually around this time, give or take a few weeks, my panic and anxiety gets really rough and I get so incredibly miserable I finally consider going into the family clinic and begging for enough pills to get my crazy ass back on an even keel.

I never do it, though, because all the bullshit goes back into remission right after I consider saying uncle, and then I pretty much forget about it until the next year. I mean, I’ll have an occasional isolated day of The Dread here and there, but nothing I feel compelled to medicate. And, to be completely honest, one of the ‘features’ of my little condition is that it makes me utterly paranoid of pills even though my mind knows perfectly well that meds are cleaner, safer, and better-regulated than all the street drugs I did back in the day.

Yes, my anxiety has made me afraid of pills. Fucking fuck.

Anyway, so this is historically the worst month of the year for panic and anxiety and I’ve been having attacks of varying degrees of fucking awful pretty much daily for a month or so. On top of that, I just naturally happened to choose this month to move two thousand miles, so there’s an added level of disassociation and stress.

This is not the normal kind of move, where you put your shit into your car and escort it yourself by driving it to your new home. This is a move where I’m putting my things into the care of UPS and hoping they’ll deliver my life semi-intact to my new apartment.

My new apartment which just happens to be a security building, so the stuff can’t even be delivered. LDBF will have to go pick it all up somewhere.

So it’s panic season, plus moving with its attendant stress of quitting of jobs and bands. There’s also the pre-menopausal acne, which is insult to injury, and on top of all that I woke up this morning with what I think is a stye in my right eye. And I got fat this winter, eating all the white things I know better than to eat. (Sometimes, you just want to order a fucking pizza. (Where “sometimes” equals “like once a week or so.”))

Seriously. I’m, like, the least pretty girl on the planet. Which causes LDBF to tell me I’m the prettiest girl on the planet about every twenty minutes or so. He’s amazing about The Dread, too, listening carefully and saying wonderful safe supportive things and threatening to hug me for a whole month.

There’s been a lot of other support, too, for all my bitching, which I think is in part keeping me from having a total meltdown. Someone I don’t even really know has offered to drop moving boxes off at the house this weekend; the sun is shining; my newsroom co-workers are going out for a beer with me the Friday after next; my brother has a truck for getting boxes to UPS. I’ll get through it, but mostly I’d rather curl up in bed than pack boxes or haul crap to the growing Goodwill pile in the basement.

Honestly, I just want to be moved, past tense. Moving sucks. And on that note, I’m going to figure out how to pack my file box, once I remove the things too important to ship such as my passport and father’s POA paperwork. Ciao.

Winter

In which all I want to do lately is laze around doing not much of anything.

I spend the vast majority of my free time in my room, sitting on the floor. I read, I nap, I knit, I watch Netflix, and I chat with LDBF via Skype.

In the past week or so I’ve knit two hats, finished a scarf, read three or four novels, watched several movies and shows, hauled a bunch of Goodwill and/or eCycle-bound things to the basement, thrown a bunch of stuff away, and sucked down many bottles of wine.

I also cook pretty frequently. I go out to eat about once a week, which I think is a pretty acceptable rate.

Every morning I make coffee and a breakfast of varying cuteness haul them to work to enjoy at my desk:

And soup is still my bitch:

I’m not gigging much, which sucks at the end of each pay period when I realize how much difference that little bit of extra income can make, but it is nice to be able to stay inside when it’s freezing cold out and not have to be schlepping gear across parking lots.

I’m glad the days are slowly getting longer, but I’m still really very much looking forward to spring.

On the one who thinks you’re perfect, even though you’re not.

In which there’s a very long-form piece about love. (Originally posted here, but since I wrote it I decided I’d like a local copy and moved it. So here it is.)

A year ago, if you’d asked me if I’d ever been in love before, I would have said yes, of course. I mean, I’m a divorced grown-ass woman, aren’t I?

I’ve been in love a dozen times or more, haven’t I? I’ve had that wonderful flush at the beginning, and the horrible heartache and tears at the end, and the various shades of really good to merely okay to this-fucking-sucks in between. I’m an old hand at this shit. Been there, done that.

So much so that I weighed the pros, as I understood them, of being with someone versus the cons, and came to the only logical conclusion:

Fuck relationships.

Continue reading

The weekend

In which there is THE BEST OMELETTE OF ALL TIME. And I’m moving.

Saturday night, Coyote Kings and I along with Gary Winston & the Real Deal played at concert venue Main Street Studios here in Walla Walla.

The venue is pretty cool but it’s new enough that people don’t seem to know about it, so while the audience was appreciative it was very small. I think I made maybe thirty bucks for the night, which doesn’t even cover my bar tab. Oh, well.

After the show I went to Marcy’s with my friend Kimi. Much of the regular crew were there and it was like old times. We all sat around the fire table on the patio and hollered at one another. It was glorious.

As last call neared, Kimi informed me that she was no longer eligible for any kind of driving-type behavior, so I offered her lodging with me. We stumbled back to the house around one o’clock in the morning and hung out in my room hollerin’ (and drinkin’ sparkling wine that I’m sure we really didn’t need) until we passed out. (I offered her the front room like a decent hostess, but she chose a pile of blankets on my floor anyway. Gotta love yourself a low-maintenance woman!)

The next morning we walked back to town together in search of brunch. There was a wait at Maple Counter so we snuck into Marcy’s. This probably saved my life:

Eventually we got into the restaurant and this happened:

That lovely thing is a mushroom and Swiss omelette with mushroom bechamel. It was perfect. I loved every bite of it! The owner of the restaurant knows Kimi and came to our table (and recognized me!). She was incredibly gracious and nice.

I love this little town and I love the friends I’ve made here. Being able to bike or walk everywhere is wonderful. Being greeted and hugged by a dozen people when walking into the bar is gratifying and satisfying. Being a bit of a local celebrity is super fun.

I’m really going to miss it here after I move to Minneapolis next year. Yup, I’ve decided I’m gonna quit living in an attic and go shack up with the LDBF. He’s my best friend, my partner, and the only man who has ever waltzed with me in the kitchen. Plus the job market there is amazing. (The weather sucks, but after 15-plus years in Iowa I know I can adapt.)

I don’t have an actual date set yet, but am looking at probably somewhere between late March and May. I’m not really excited about going through all my crap and the multiple trips to Goodwill to donate things I haven’t used in six years, but I am excited about arriving there and enjoying city living again for the first time in years. And being with a fantastic human being. And Indian and falafel joints. And a real job market.

Anyway, the news is that I’m moving to the Midwest. Again. (Heh.) I guess I should probably tell my grandmother about this.

Sunday

In which I am the epitome of non-productivity.

Had a pick-up gig last night; apparently someone in Junkyard Jane was sick so we did their Ice Harbor Brewery show for them at the last minute. Great crowd, nice vibe. Free dinner!

Here’s Rob, me, Luther, and Kit:

Coyote Kings w/Mush

Today I’m a bit hung over. I don’t intend to accomplish much. I’d wanted to bake something — egg muffins or a fritatta — to make breakfasts easier this week, but I don’t know if I’ll get to it. I’m feelin’ pretty severely lazy. I’ve cooked breakfast and I’ve boiled water for tea, but that’s it.

Tea

I’m listening to the Gita and surfing amazon.com for samovars.

The LDBF is currently at the Mall of America with his mom, who is visiting for the weekend. I never expect to hear from him again. Malls. Heh.

In the near future I’m going to make myself another cup of tea and watch an old Depp movie on my tablet while sprawled lazily in my unmade bed.

Basically the only thing I care about lately is VACATION IN LESS THAN TWO WEEKS!!!1! Cannot wait to smooch on that LDBF again. Also looking forward to traveling and getting out of town and seeing new stuff and all that, but mostly the smooching.

Dense fog

In which it’s cold.

Actually, it’s not that cold. It’s just colder than it was, and it’s damp and gray so it seems colder than it actually is.

This morning the valley was socked in with dense, cold, damp fog. I half-wished I’d been wearing an entire extra layer of clothing while riding my bike to work this morning. (Oh, yeah, on the subject of work: The second part-time position went to someone else. I was relieved. I fucking love working part-time.)

I will be spending the first week of December at LDBF’s. Super excited! Haven’t been on a plane for far too long. Well, I flew to Seattle not too long ago, but haven’t been out of the state in awhile. And I can’t wait to see him again.

I finished a knitting project!

I finally bought a rain suit to wear while biking in inclement weather. I hope this purchase of mine doesn’t cause the entire winter to be wet and rainy.

Heater

I made a lovely mushroomy lentil stew for dinner on this dark and damp day. Excuse me while I go hork down a bowl of it.

Broken stuff + love

In which I break a couple of things and the long-distance relationship is great.

Yesterday, my 31 day-old phone died. Just up and goddamned failed, right in the middle of the afternoon. Six months ago, I probably wouldn’t have cared much about being phoneless for a day or three, but now my phone is my main source of communication with the Internet boyfriend so it really bummed me out.

In all my years of carrying various cell phones, I’ve never dropped nor broken nor drowned a phone, so I suppose it’s my turn for a catastrophic phone failure. The thing turns on but won’t boot, and it won’t turn off unless the battery is pulled. It occasionally boots into its version of BIOS or sometimes into a dialog that asks if I really want to install a non-standard operating system package, but other than that it’s just the blue TrackPhone screen. My brother looked at it and agreed: it’s fucking DEAD.

I need to get out to Walmart to exchange it; G’ma said she’d haul me out there this or tomorrow afternoon. I can’t find the receipt but I hope they replace it anyway.

~+~+~+~+~
The day before yesterday I went out to the garage to hop on my bike and ride over to the store, but I discovered the front tire was completely flat. I aired it up — having a compressor fucking rocks — but it was pretty low yesterday morning. I dropped it at the shop after work.

Today, after making the newspaper, I trudged over there in the heat to pick it up but they hadn’t gotten to it yet. So I had to walk home in the heat. Again.

~+~+~+~+~
Internet boyfriend is coming to visit in September. Soooo excited I could absolutely pop.

We’re smitten with each other. We spent ten hours in video chat last Sunday (not contiguous; there were trips to kitchens and stores and such, and I took a nap) and never got bored of looking at each other. This is par for the course. We text, we IM, we call, we video chat, we email. Constantly. The only time we’re out of touch is work and gigs, and even then we still text every few hours. I think we both agree it’s fortunate nobody else has to put up with us — well, except the NSA — because we’re in that really cutesy phase only charming if you’re in it.

He has a beard but it turns out there are dimples under there. DIMPLES. Y’all know how I feel about dimples.

Last night on Skype with him I spent a solid hour just crying with laughter. (He’s systematically destroying my refined left coast humor with his pedantic Midwestern humor. It’s a travesty. I cannot believe the shit I’ll laugh at if he says it.) I adore him. He also hits everything on the fairly negative and bitchy list I wrote a few years ago except for being a devotee part; interestingly enough Amma gave me double prasad at one of my darshans this year and I sent the extra to him; interestingly enough he’s keeping it in his freezer because he considers it sacred.

“Eat the chocolate, nerd, that’s what it’s for.”

“Oh, I will. But not now, bitch!”

My life is almost unbearably pleasant.

In which I finally post! I really don’t know what my problem is; I mean I have all this free time and everything, I just never blog anymore. Also: I use the phrase “fucking awesome” far too many times in this post.

This is what’s great about my new job: there’s actual work to do. This is also what’s great about my new job: the fucking phone never rings.

My desk

Holy shit, but I was awfully bored at the last place. Morons calling me up all the time asking the same impossibly stupid questions over and over, no systems to administer, no hope of training or promotion. I had been really excited when they had offered me the job and that bitchin’ title a couple of years ago, but it just ended up being first tier technical support all over again only in an office instead of a cubicle. I didn’t get to learn a bunch of cool server crap and I didn’t get to do fun projects, only tedious ones like moving websites. There was too much free time and yet I always felt harried because I had to be in the queue all the time and talk to people.

I do miss being able to tell people I’m in IT, but my new job actually suits me better. I roll in there at eight o’clock in the morning and I have things to do! I produce things every day, and they’re tangible: pages in the goddamned actual real life treeware newspaper! I do a sports/weather page every day; I do the Business page every day; I do A2 every day. On Fridays, I do three pages for the Sunday paper. And usually before I’ve even left the newsroom at one o’clock, I have a physical copy of an actual newspaper in my hand.

There’s enough work to keep one focused and busy but not so much one feels overwhelmed. The other people in the newsroom — the reporters and copy editors and editors and photographers and interns — are all awesome. The police scanner is always on, and amusing more often than you’d expect. The gossip is fantastic. The long stretches of silence while everyone writes or edits or paginates are lovely.

The newsroom is like a cross between a library and a university and everyone in there is basically some form of nerd or another. It’s fucking awesome.

And it’s part-time. And it pays more than my last job did; I went from having a title and getting paid shit to being an entry-level newbie who makes almost as much in 25 hours a week as I used to make in 40.

Which means I get home a little after one each afternoon and I’m not even looking for another job. (I would probably volunteer at Helpline again, but they moved way the hell across town so it wouldn’t be convenient.) I’ve been doing one little domestic project each afternoon: catch up on filing. Go through dresser drawers. Clean out closet. Donate things to Goodwill. I feel relaxed and calm and organized.

I’ve begun to read again. I’m growing an avocado tree on the kitchen windowsill. I do my nails every week. I’m cooking a lot. I feel like I have plenty of time. It’s awesome.

Sometimes I just come home, change out of my office clothes, and go get drunk on my friend’s patio. And since she works part-time too, I can do that and still be home and in bed way before ten. Talk about decadent.

There’s also this wonderful e-boyfriend. I met this guy online; it’s my first internet relationship (which is actually pretty strange, considering how long I’ve been online and the sheer number of hours I’ve spent each week dicking around on the internet in the past decade and a half). We’ve been talking on the phone every night for months and we’re now at the (apparently common) sending-each-other-crap-in-the-mail phase. He’s fucking awesome: articulate, good natured, educated, employed, hilarious, and not a goddamned stoner. I can’t wait to meet him in person, but he lives halfway across the country and with the new job and everything that wouldn’t be until August at the very earliest.

He’s twelve years younger than I am, but I don’t give a fuck because he’s nice. Not to mention that the majority of single men in the age bracket more appropriate to me are single because they want 22-year-old models for girlfriends or are raging alcoholics or only marginally employable. The benefit of 30-something males is that that’s the age they decide they wanna settle down if they’re going to, and I’m basically only interested in settling down. Dating and screwing around are fine, I suppose, but I’ve basically already experienced nearly every permutation and most of the time it’s either shallow or neurotic. I think I learned from that crush last year that I was — am — finally ready to consider a real relationship again, but it really needs to be real.

Gig season is picking up. The band will be all over the northwest this summer, playing festivals and bars in three states. The latest album is doing well and has gotten some really good reviews. Our drummer is still threatening to move away, but he’s been doing that for years.

I still ride a bike everywhere and I pretty much have thighs of steel. My hair is long and I really need to get a cut and color. I’m going to go throw a load of laundry in and make some sugar-free chocolate fudge pudding. It looks like it might rain. Life is good fucking awesome.

This is what I did today.

In which there is a running list.

6:02 wake up for no god damned reason
7:19 wake up for no god damned reason
8:10 turn off alarm, get out of bed
8:11 search ‘copy edit test’
8:32 shower
9:00 eat a mushroom, asparagus, and cheddar omelet
9:15 leave the house
9:48 take copy editing test at the U-B
10:49 say “Yeah, I’ve been over it three times already anyway.”
11:03 reply to texts while sitting in Starbucks with a grande dark roast coffee
11:18 search for ‘ap stylebook’
11:59 change into fleece drawstring pants in bedroom
12:02 go to Loney’s
12:58 put groceries away
1:11 IRC
1:22 search ‘sardine recipe’, find this
1:45 cook and eat a really bizarre meal (ingredients were butter, garlic, mushroom, blackeye peas, cream, parmesan, avocado, and chives)
1:55 blog
2:01 make the bed
2:05 drink cold, leftover coffee
2:15 surf more recipes
2:35 job hunt fuck around online some more, FB chat with Mel
4:33 wake up from catnap with actual cat
4:36 put some lentils on to cook
4:48 fold laundry
5:05 take lentils off, eat some
5:15 go visit the wendover-briggs machine