the world is a hellish place, and bad writing is destroying the quality of our suffering

When you want vanilla Greek yogurt, almond cream yogurt is a terribly poor second choice. Even with cut-up fruit to mitigate the taste differential, it's a sad comparison.

I couldn't get to sleep last night. A combination of a lingering low-grade headache, anticipation of the coming storm (which hasn't been all that life-altering yet), and an unfortunately timed car alarm blaring for about a half hour between 1:30 and 2:AM, I think, kept me from getting any real sleep until way too close to morning. There is something weighing on me--not a decision, but an unpleasant task that I must complete and have put off (not solely due to my own procrastination)--and that was running through my mind, certainly. I have finally figured out how to handle it, both through that thinking-without-consciously-thinking and after talking it over with a far-away friend today. I will write the letter tonight and deliver it on Saturday. Then it will be done and will not weigh on me any longer. Thank goodness.

It is very troubling to me that a former boyfriend resembles in no small way the iconic Tom Waits, at least as he appears on the following album covers and other photos.

He was pretty weird (the boyfriend, not Tom Waits), but had a sort of allure that's hard to deny even now.

I need to get out more.

[the title quotation is by Tom Waits]


some people don’t realize what they have until it’s gone, but that does not always mean they are supposed to get it back

Why is a huge glass of water so much more delicious right before I go to bed than it would be at any other time of the day?

I had an odd experience the other night. Was dozing, not quite sleeping yet but nearly there. Out of the blue, had a very strong memory of the way I felt when my college boyfriend, Russ, left. We'd dated for a few months, and he very suddenly disappeared. His roommates came to me looking for him, because he'd left bills unpaid and had taken most but not all of his stuff from their house. He quit his job. He was just gone.

I was devastated. I drank too much and too often anyway, but it got really bad then. I drank all the time, refused to leave the apartment, and literally growled at my roommates if the used the phone because he might call. I waited every night on the front step for him to come back, dead-drunk, wrapped in a comforter (it was mid-August and hot as Hell).

Eighteen days later, he did come back. Well, he called. His explanation was sketchy, but I was far too relieved to pay much attention. After the briefest protest at his absence, I was back, deeper than ever. I agreed to meet him at his friend's apartment, where he was staying.

The next morning, I left for work (at the job I still had, by the skin of my teeth), grateful and happy and over the moon.

I never saw him again.

The other night, I felt anew that kick to the jaw. He'd done worse than just to leave me. To come back and leave again was beyond destructive and arrogant and cruel.

I sat at the edge of my bed, tears in my eyes, heart in my throat, realizing that I can't forgive myself for having been fooled like that.

Why do our hearts, minds, and souls work that way, I wonder? Russ is long gone. I rarely even recall him; three months is nothing in the scheme of things. I even learned from what happened.

Nights can be so very dark, though.

August has been weird. I was out of town for nearly half of it, and have been engaged in very un-me activities for the rest of it. Life-changing. Nothing worth talking about, yet, but prehaps soon. That's why I've been quiet, anyway.

[the title quotation is by Stephan Labossiere]


if this is the truth, I want to turn away


is not the same as thinking, goes nowhere:
I think I am thinking as I chew on the same cud
of fears and regrets, but it's my soul I gnaw,
while time has gagged, so that the past and future
choke together as the bleak field expands
to include whatever the eye of God would see
if it dared look. What I pray for is not this.
And if this is the truth, I want to turn away.

Ask what that cow has to look forward to,
what thoughts she might have but of ruin and the sweet
calves she barely remembers, taken away
so soon that they have blurred together and bawl
and she can hear their piteous voices echo
in the still air and terrible sunshine shimmer

[by David R. Slavitt, from The Seven Deadly Sins and other poems]


it was not the feeling of completeness I so needed, but the feeling of not being empty

I love... mild sedatives

Right now I want... nothing so much as a reasonable opportunity

I feel like... maybe I need a little more sleep than I got last night. Like, maybe an hour or two more.

I hate it when... I break a fingernail doing something silly, like getting into the car

I fear... being the last one to the party

I'm lonely without... the person who used to put me into overages on my data plan

I need... a little caffeine in the morning

Today I... poured half a cup of tea on myself when I forgot how to drink

Tomorrow I'm... hoping to do better, since I won't be wearing something that will camouflage brown liquid quite so well

I just... had to plug in my computer, because I forget to do that when I'm finished for the night and it was on 7% power.

I want to meet... a sane, decent, supportive business person.

I'm hungry for... black raspberry Jello

I love it when... I get the kind of surprise that came this morning: an email from a college friend who I thought had fallen off the side of the planet

I'm afraid of... moths. Who knew?

I'm listening to... gentle snores and myself, giggling

I'm wearing... gray leggings & a black t-shirt

I wish I was in.. a slightly alternate reality

I want to get... out of Dodge this weekend. The MFing car show is coming.

I can't... get no ... satisfaction

I'm nervous... about the potential effects of my actions on people who shouldn't have to pay the price.

My Mom thinks I'm... smarter than I really am

My Dad thinks I'm... better than I really am

I'm happy when... inside matches outside (or they're pretty close to congruent)

I'm sad when... it feels like what others are seeing is just an interpretation that I'm allowing them to view

I'm disappointed that... I forgot to put chocolate milk on the grocery list

I wish I looked like... myself at age 23

[grabbed from a forum on this site; the title quotation is by Jonathan Safran Foer, from Everything Is Illuminated]


what is the student but a lover courting a fickle mistress who ever eludes his grasp?

  1. What did you enjoy most about kindergarten?
    finally getting to go to school, after years of wishing to do so but being prevented by my age, which seemed brutally unfair.
  2. What did you enjoy most about elementary school?
    learning. Doing assignments. Writing. Taking tests. Reading. Studying.

    My favorite subject was English
  3. What did you enjoy most about junior high/middle school?
    boys! And everything that I'd loved from elementary school, too--I was still me, only a little older.

    Subject-wise, I loved Science.
  4. What did you enjoy most about high school?
    boys. And still the school stuff.

    Subject-wise, I was probably most into Politics and Government then. "Social Studies."
  5. Which grade or year of school was your least favorite and why?
    Fourth. My teacher was a strong, independent woman...who happened to be pregnant when the school year started. Her condition became complex and required bed-rest, so she was replaced by a long-term substitute who was not unfamiliar to those of us who had attended that school before. While she was not without skills, she was definitely not capable of handling a fourth grade class with particular ease or finesse.

    Most of that year was a waste. I remember spending vast periods of time by myself in the coat room (a sort of anteroom in the back of the classroom), tucked up on the floor beneath the coat-hooks, reading from my library books. I was "allowed" (i.e. encouraged, forced, whatever) to do that when I was through with my assignments and my presence was no longer needed in the classroom. Because I was one of the few "smart kids" in the class, I would usually finish early and "distract" the others, so I was sent away and ignored so that the others (the "dumb kids") could be taught. It wasn't fair or effective or decent in either direction and caused all sorts of hurt feelings. But, hey: I'm sure it only helped foster my love of reading, right?
  6. What percentage of your classmates do you still have some real interaction with at least once per year?
    Thanks to FB, I probably communicate with 5-10% of my elementary through high school classmates at some point during each year. Sadly, the number of communications per person increases each year as the number of classmates decreases. I miss my friends.

[from The Cat, who got it here; the title quotation is by William Osler]


empty blue light weird on the tile floor

"Your fate awaits outside the door"
Said the strip in the Chinese Fortune Cookie at the office
Strange knock--at the door?
Open the door once--nothing
Close it--stir the soup--back to the poem I am trying to understand
Strange knock again--is it really my door?
Fumble with the lock, checking it, tugging
Door open--no one--but empty blue light weird on the tile floor

[Elise Cowen, '"Your Fate Awaits You Outside the Door"', from Poems and Fragments]