Sunday, February 27, 2011

Reason Number 311: A Well-Stocked Pantry

Sometimes it frustrates me that even after all these years I still wake up wondering whether my life would be better if I were ten pounds lighter, and frantically trying to figure out how to attain a greater lightness. This is indicative of my inability to sit with myself, to respect myself as I am, and to strive for improvement in areas that actually need it, because doing that is more difficult than going on a diet. I wonder what people who don't fret about their bodies do with their thoughts, but I don't envy them because I'm sure they have other things to fret about, and I maintain a general happiness in cohabitation with this preoccupation (rhymeskies!). I don't know this will ever go away, but maintenance makes me resilient. And there are times that are better than others, and those times are extra wonderful, but that doesn't mean I should give up when things are sub-wonderful.

I think I'm almost at the point where I can write about it, like, in a nonfiction way. I've yet to read anything that's captured how I feel about eating disorders, as most articles are full of generalizations about control, or theories on how recovery happens, or triggering personal accounts. Not that these things don't help some people, and it's also worth noting that nothing anyone can do or say to an eating disorder sufferer will make them want to recover unless they reach a point at which that life is no longer sustainable, and this often happens in a very tangible and tragic way. These are strangely contagious illnesses, too, and oftentimes I've found companionship with fellow sufferers has been painful, though at this point in my recovery that is a lot less true.

I will always maintain that the reason eating disorders are ultimately harmful is because of the toll they take on one's productivity and existence. You never regain what you have lost (PUNS!) in the process. And that having something(s) to live for and take comfort in--in an overarching, personally significant way--is the only way to climb out.

Recognizing that this is not about bodies, really, and coming to terms with the subliminal factors, is a trying process, but it's the best thing you can do. The translation of "my thighs are disgusting and need to be diminished" to "I am miserable about the fight I just had with my mother" is so crucial. This is something I need to work on. And often feelings about body parts are so deeply ingrained you don't exactly know what's bothering you, but in this case you just have to dredge and plow through the sadness and anxiety and self-hatred.

I will now step off my soapbox to say I've spent my entire life hating "Lady in Red" for what I thought was Chris de Burgh's faux-British pronunciation of "dance" but today I found out he actually is British, born in Argentina. So fuck me.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Reason Number 112: Singular Pluralism, Warm Showers, Literal Diarrhea, Beasts

Someone, somewhere thought naming a band "Vertical Horizon" would be a great idea. It's always weird, and more than a little lame, when you can precisely identify an artist's* motivations. I would bet at least two boxes of Publix brand popsicles that the word "paradox" played a substantial role in the dreaming up of this brilliant moniker. Can a horizon be vertical? I dunno, but wouldn't that be cool? And like think of the connotations of horizon, like so much space, into infinity. Space! Infinity! Deep thoughts into deep songs.

Champaign is also no stranger to transparency. Clearly, these folks sat down and thought, who the fuck doesn't love champaign?** And, by that rationale, who wouldn't love a band named after a benign alcoholic beverage served at even the most milquetoast breakfast gatherings?

Every time I read anything I'm guilty of immediate analysis of the writer's intention, and not even consciously at this point, but in most great shit, these intentions are complex and highly subject to debate. And that makes literary analysis, and the possibility of discussing that analysis, so exciting for me I could dance in a circle.

Today, I am run ragged. I sit down to write, feel that familiar throat knot, but am somehow less inhibited in exhaustion. Maybe I should exhaust myself more often. Along with being wet, being tired is one of my top most intolerable feelings, but today, between taking re-taking bad camera phone pictures of black wool coats, I realized the only solution is plowing through anyways.

I'm working on deadlines here. Hiatus from my brain. I need to write something I'm proud of again. I will write something I'm proud of again. I just have to sit and write embarrassing things and not be afraid.

*ha! I'm calling the band member(s?) of Vertical Horizon artists. I need to go to either go to sleep or be a total blogger hypocrite and do the deed for goodness' sake. I've always wondered whether goodness is, in this case, a singular or plural possessive. Good thing I'm not ninety and will therefore use this word sparingly for the next several decades.

**I don't really love champaign.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Reason Number 111: March Approaches, Imminent Self-Fortification

You know, in life, really bad shit happens.

Like Youtube starts inserting advertisements into otherwise unadulterated Destiny's Child videos.

Kenneth Cole appears in news articles because of some stupid insensitive comments about Egypt and inspires people to pay attention to his disgusting and embarrassing clothing, even in infamy.

The Project Food store runs out of Kashi Go Lean Crunch and 1 percent milk in the very same day.

Golden raisins happen to innocent baked goods.

You find yourself liking particular Kelly Rowland songs for no reason you can identify consciously.

You purchase unflattering pale-colored pants you can't afford while too tipsy to control yourself.

The month of March.

Staples begin creeping out of your always stalwart, perfectly-constructed clog boots.

You begin to wonder if, in your heart of hearts, your self-defining hatred of all cheeses might be dissipating along with the vestiges of your suburban childhood.

You use phrases like "heart of hearts" in place of something that means anything. And then you're like wtf do I even know myself one tiny bit?

Then as you prepare to squirt the heinous three dollar Johnson and Johnson baby shampoo conditioner hybrid (NO TEARS? More like MANY TEARS because I'm POOR, with the worst split ends) into your outspread hand, you take comfort in wtf. Something as dumb as a healthy heap of unrefined oatmeal in a bright green bowl will get you to apply lipstick so red it repels certain insects, and thinking of weird inside jokes makes you smile broadly enough to showcase the crimson smears all over your front teeth to strangers at Fashion Week events.

And in spite of crusty black ice patches and sinus impairments and resounding halt in professional success, the Project Food Store will never stop carrying Colt 45 tall boys. And after twenty-seven years of daily pixie stick ingestion, your teeth are free of cavities. You discover a secret C Town(town (town)) so close to your house you could practically throw a stone through the window if you could throw a stone at all. You fall onto your knees, get right up and poke your gigantic bruises without a single flinch, look down at your boobs, which are bigger than they used to be, and then at the end of the day you open your freezer to the comfort of APC jeans and supple, untouched chicken breasts, and deduce with a sigh that soup is imminent, and in your control.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Official Story Time

You Can’t Ride That Man, He’s a Ghost Man

We were married beneath the auspices of a rollicking coaster, our hair spun sugar in the gusty lurch of overhead cars—the splendid screams, the raising of desperate hands, the suckling on spoonfuls of frozen raspberry lemonade, the scent of rapidly-generated fried doughballs that exploded in our mouths, our hands. I flipped his bangs with my free finger, and repeatedly we reeled through Monster Plantation until the bedraggled animatronic shag mammoths retracted their acrylic claws. I spread even sandwiches, intercepted afternoon calls, rigged extraordinary windsocks, noteworthy backsplash murals, but it wasn’t long before David met his ghost boyfriend behind the washing machine. Pinching my flesh into shrunken shirt dresses, selvedge denim, I began to launder away, in coin-operated machines, to achieve that desired delicate softness, light lofty warmth, while David spoonfed his ghostman chocolate ice cream, watched it dribble down his transparent esophagus, occasionally prying fingers in, to taste. Alone, I watched gumballs spiral down intestinal shafts, waiting for a pink, settling on recurring green, stale, unfit for bubbles, belabored, jaw-throbbing smacks as my legs dangled from the behemoth dryer, vibrating, pulsing imitation radiance. The bras and sheets so dank, but in front of me a freckle-breasted woman with serrated teeth airing clean purple towels. Flapping and flying, buoyant in the warm milky din, her mouth rounded in anticipation of aftershower. STOP, I pressed, releasing my towels from tumble. I held them, smelled something like my skin in the folds.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Reason Number 111: Delusions of Grammar

Sometimes, I want to be important.

I am a bad writer, getting worse and worse, especially late at night when coffee makes me fall asleep and no matter how many Wham! songs I listen to I want to hibernate.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Reason Number 110: Self-Queery

Sometimes you have to motivate yourself to do certain things by doing the exact opposite. Pleasure reading, fiction writing feels laborious so in response I force-feed myself queer theory, which for some reason feels less taxing than prior theoretic pursuits. It's also somewhat better than cleaning behind the toilet, another delay tactic I employ in desperate situations.

Hocquenghem's "The Screwball Asses" is strangely engrossing and hilarious and rich with new and exciting information I'm probably misinterpreting like crazy, my reaction saying as much about me as it does about him or Noura Wedell, his translator. I AM THE OTHER and by that I mean in possession of vagina sinkhole object receptacle subject exogenic cumshot shitbucket bourgeois phallus receiver.

I've learned several words, and actually took the time to seek their definitions. Oh hi online dictionary revelry! "Unequivocal" is everywhere, all the time, and I always assume I know what it means though I never attempt to use it in conversation or otherwise, but now I know precisely. But I'm gonna make you work for it if you don't know already, which you probably do unless you're a dumbass ignoramus like me!

But even though I went to Brown and majored in English reading theory still makes me feel like I'm watching the Super Quartz Rose Bowl, and I don't think I'll ever understand Cybernetics, or the particular sentence structures theorists always seem to employ.

In other news, bodegas don't sell heavy cream or raisins, and I find this very off-putting.