I’ve got this suspicion that you’re reading over my shoulder and I’ve come to find that life is much better lived with a shadow than alone. There’s nothing like that looming feeling of something coming, under that guise, over that expectation, and beyond what I really knew what we were capable of.

I’m tired of your late night phone calls and your early morning drunk dials.

You told me you loved my smile and I told you I hated the smirk you get on your face when you prove me wrong. I told you I loved the way you laugh when I say the things you least expect for me to say out loud and you told me you hated the way I wrote. Like a child, you said. Like a teenager spurting worthless feelings, pitter pattering away at a keyboard. That’s what 90 words a minute sounds like, my friend. clickityclickityclickityclickityclickityclick. I’ve kept a snare drum going on my keyboard like a Little Drummer Boy. Christmas is over and it’s still your favorite song, pah rum pum pum pum.

Therapy has taught me that maybe self respect should be a higher priority than not being alone. Quenching that thirst for companionship that we all have. Women are swans, mating for life, and men become dolphins, having sex for pleasure. But I have never felt as if I was an incomplete person… like I had to find someone to fill some sort of void, like liquid in a sponge. To be filled and made heavy and whole. You make me happy, you know, but I have to let you out on a long leash as keeping you close makes me weaker. You make me feel less than I am, less than I should be. Weak. Pathetic. Dumb. You have more interesting conversations with your houseplants, you said.

And I feel stupid. I do. But then I feel like I have these genius moments where I have to save every bit of energy inside of me until an idea bursts from my lips and that moment of brilliance can’t be outshined. I feel the need to point out that I’m smarter than I look to people on a daily basis when these moments manifest, and my friends, they laugh, because they know that my uniqueness is like bringing whiskey to the dinner party instead of wine. I find myself being told that I make people very insecure. That my energy radiates confidence, even when I’m underdressed and overextended. The reality is my shyness overshadows all conversation, and I’m trapped inside a very uneasy body that won’t shout out the correct answer in fear of being wrong. I have been beaten with your newspaper enough times to know when to keep my mouth shut in fear of another joke being made at my expense.

From time to time, I can taste your sincerity. Lately, it has faded, like a gummy lollipop that has sat in the junk drawer for far too long. The candy is half its size once you make it through the chewy, stale exterior. I’m tired of having to fight to get to where your sweetness begins.

it’s a series of teenie tiny little bits of happiness. little puzzle pieces that fit perfectly instead of having to try the same pieces over and over because it looks right. things fall into place – they do.

a man approaches a woman and kisses her. she can do nothing but think of the problems, the worries, the mistakes that can be made by the two of them being together. she expresses her concern and he kisses her again. end scene.

this lively roller coaster we appear to be unintentionally strapped into has how locked us into place and we are along for the ride. i am screaming – nonstop – as the lack of control over my own destiny terrifies me. you love it. you throw your hands in the air and yell wildly because you love the rush and you’re not thinking about the future. you’re thinking about how in this moment you’re being whipped around, your torso flying wild like one of those inflatable wobbly armed men. im gripping the bar for dear life.

theres something inexplicable about all of this. something effortless and pure. we made our mistakes and licked our wounds and waited for them to scab. we pick at them as if they were the edges of envelopes until the paper gives way and tears to the crease.

How to deal with your nemesis

February 24, 2011

I wrote a pretty long post about this originally and then decided that bitch was a total waste of my energy.

Here’s what this breaks down to…
How to deal with your nemesis:
1. Avoid talking about them.. What better way to get back at someone who’s a major asshole then ignoring their existence! “Who? Oh that chick? Haven’t spoken to her in a year. I hope she is having a lovely life in whatever pasture they put her out to die in. Have you tried the wings here? I hear they’re AMAZING!”
2. When you do run into them, continue to pretend like they don’t exist. Oh, hi? Is that you? Oh. You’re still a horrible person? KBYE
3. Act normally. This person is officially a complete stranger, and unless they’re a 6’4″ skinny jeaned hipster hottie, I’m not gonna spend any extra time staring at you in a bar. She’s just some chick who’s overdressed and trying too hard on a date at a dive bar, so definitely text your gays and inform them that you ran into this shitshow at your bar and you would like to kick her in the poonani, but you know better, and then get distracted by your whiskey. Oh, and when she has the audacity to SIT AT THE TABLE NEXT TO YOURS, keep having a fabulous time, because she just ordered the dumbest drink on the cocktail menu and is making this guy work too hard for her loosie goosie poon. Yep. You heard me. Pretty sure that ish is dirty, so wrap it up dude. I should have passed him a note or something. Smoke signals. Morse code. Something. Sorry dude.

It helped that I looked big pimpin with two dudes on my arm and that this chick had to “Psssst!” at me to get my attention. Whatever. Stop wasting my time and find a bar on your side of the neighborhood so I don’t have to see your snotty smirk anymore. In fact, please move across the country so we don’t have to breathe the same air right now as you use so much of it talking shit and then get really confused as to why you don’t have any friends in New York.

I think that’s about all I’m going to say about that today, as I’ve already wasted enough time and breath on someone who went out of their way to be cruel to me after I made a huge effort to be a welcoming and supportive friend. HAVE A NICE LIFE, PSYCHO.

Update (3-1-11): This was a really ugly post. I apologize for y’all having to see that… I should tell you how I REALLY feel 😛

5 Good. 5 Bad.

February 21, 2011

5 things that are making me itchy and 5 things that make life a-okay… right now:

5 things that are making me itchy:
1. My cuticle on my right thumb hurts. Im afraid if I mess with it anymore I’ll have a black swan moment.
2. The weird spot next to the right side of my nose hurts. I think I’m getting a zit.
3. I had that “brain freeze” sensation earlier. It wasn’t because of something cold.
4. My shoulders feel tense. Like they’re being pulled up by strings that are connected to pulleys on my ears.
5. I am feeling a little guilty I slept so much last night. I’m feeling guiltier that the extent of my outside time today was walking to the bodega, and walking upstairs and around the 4th floor so I know what’s going on when I start showing rooms.

5 things that are making things a-okay:
1. There’s something about curling up on the couch under a fleece blanket in a cashmere sweater. It’s sublime.
2. This episode of This American Life is making me feel a bit better about my life. This episode is about this documentary made about a crazy drug-addicted mom and an ex-rock star alcoholic deadbeat stepdad… yikes.
3. This weekend flooded me with a lot of happy feelings. That’s why I’m kind of feeling down now… like the drop off after a high but I’m okay with that knowing the rest of it was happy.
4. My roommates are pretty awesome. Dave made me laugh pretty hard this afternoon, Steven is a true blue friend, Justin is one of the most entertaining people I have ever met, and Jessie made me biscuits.
5. I am feeling awesome about the fact that I am able to make conscious recognitions of when I feel shitty, it is just a feeling… a symptom. It is fleeting and not forever and it’s kind of remarkable my brain is starting to see that as its taken me 23 years of living and 10 years of therapy to get there.

So there you have it.

Call and Answer

February 17, 2011

I am being really judgmental about myself lately. I need to get a grip and just kind of enjoy what I’m working with at the moment.

Sorry if I’m all weird and flaky and uneasy. I did a line of trust issues this morning and it reaaally messed with me.

WWBD

February 15, 2011

While I was all pathetic last night after my platonic valentines date cancelled on me last minute (saturday at like midnight. it was like he was aiming for a time when he thought i would be drunk and respond irrationally to something that obviously does not matter in the long scheme of things) I had a quick turn around when I had an epiphany about the queen of single ladies… Valentines Day without a Valentine? WHAT WOULD BEYONCE DO?

Yes. WWBD. What would Beyonce do. I set out on a mission, a spiritual journey if you will, and let my mind guide the way. There’s a part that got totally existential and WICKAD out of control in terms of what Beyonce really do on a single girls valentines day (lets get real, homegirl probably hasnt had a single girls valentines day since she was 13. We all know her arranged marriage to Jay-Z was negotiated by the time Bills, Bills, Bills by Destiny’s Child came out.)

I then realized that B has been loaded since the dawn of time and I could probably not afford Beyonce’s big Valentines plan, so I broke it down to the basics and simplified it. I put my thang down, flipped it, and reversed it.

So here you go, a brief summary of WWBD on a single girl’s valentines day, illustrated with pictures that turned out way too dark.


Step One: Find a blender. Fill it with ice and cranberry juice.


Step two: Add vodka of your choice. I’m a bit partial to Brooklyn Absolute, just because it tastes like a mix between jolly ranchers and the BQE.
Step 3: Blend and serve.


Step 3: While drinking the first glass (cause I obviously made too much for one person. I was drinking on behalf of myself and my invisible date) start throwing together a crock pot of chili. Cause nothing says Valentines day like a big bowl of chili. Note: After I tupperwared the rest of it, I realized I was not entirely sure what exactly made it into this chili, but everyone loves surprises, right?


Step 4: Settle on your couch with cheez-its, your draaank, and some netflix. Tonight’s choice: The Social Network. I’ve had this first on my list for awhile (savesies!) and while it came out on the 8th, the “long wait” meant I couldn’t have it until now. I think the timing was perfect. Beyonce would obviously want to spend her single ladies Valentines Day with Jesse Eisenberg. I remember when they were shooting the movie and everybody was like “UGH GOD JUSTIN TIMBERLAKE IS SHOOTING A FACEBOOK MOVIE? THIS IS GOING TO SUCK.” Well JT is getting the last laugh yo cause I’m pretty sure they’re winning hella awards right now. Also, was I the only one that thought The Social Network was a comedy? It was hysterical. I mean, I think there was only a scene or two where I didn’t laugh. That Mark Zuckerberg’s really got a mouth on him, and who knew Justin Timberlake could play a dude who’s a bit stuck on himself and parties like a rock star? He’s like the Al Pacino of our generation.

While my valentines went out a day late or two, my father’s arrived right on time. Nothing like a valentines card from your Dad. My Dad has this really awesome habit of sending me things I don’t need and really didn’t know I wanted (LOVE YOU DAD) including a 3 foot sock monkey and a glittery pink reindeer wearing a boa (you know, with the other Christmas decor he sent that year) but his card was very sweet and it’s nice to know your parents are required to love you on valentines day. Tried calling my mom but I think she was out at one of her new social engagements, as her New Years Resolution was “join clubs and make new friends.” Go Mom! I hope she gets the valentine I sent her before she goes out of town wednesday or she’s gonna get it next week and then I really failed on the valentine mailing-date front.

So basically in conclusion, I had a really great single ladies valentines day. I will say I left out a couple details of the day that really brought a smile to my face, but this was probably the best valentines day I’ve had in awhile. Even better than the one I think I had a boyfriend (I’ve got great breakup timing.) So thanks to everyone who gave a shout out, you’re awesome.

Happy Valentine’s Day, y’all. Hope yours was as simple, lovely, and Beyonce-related as mine.

Dear L Train,

February 14, 2011

I know I come off as hungover every time I wear my sunglasses on the train, but today it was necessary. Why? Because I was rolling my eyes so many times I was worried someone would think I was having a seizure. Oh L Train, I wasn’t just rolling my eyes at your lack of punctuality but because of the etiquette of the herd standing on the platform with me. Yes, as soon as your little announcer chirped about an L train arriving on the Man-hat-tan-bound track please stand away from the platform edge there was a massive surge of movement towards that yellow stripe of doom you’re not supposed to stand on. I wanted to put my arms out and brace against the perpetually “wet paint” poles because of how hard people were pushing. I should have just jumped up into the air and let the pressure of people moving forward shove me into the train.

I wish I had known how late you were going to be today. Seriously? I should have stayed at my coffee shop and finished cause if I had known I had the time to do that this morning, I would. Finishing my coffee before I even get on the train is a total no-no, because then I have nothing to make it look like I’m too busy to make eye contact with anyone (sunglasses came in handy AGAIN.) However, I finished my coffee before I could even get on a train, and above all of that, I was stuck standing on the yellow line with an empty coffee cup. I couldn’t even get to a garbage can (one of the two at the Bedford station) if I wanted to.

I also love that you still play those alerts on morning commutes about watching your personal belongings, but I haven’t seen my purse for about 3 minutes because it’s wedged between the two girls standing next to me. They can’t see their purses either. Also, L train, I think I’m pregnant with the baby of maybe one of the two dudes pressed into my back. I’ll send you the bill for the abortion. We’re like a bunch of pencils rubber banded as tight as humanly possible. We’re talkin wrapping that sucker like 4 times around. I could pick up my legs off the ground and nobody would even notice.

L Train, I’d also like you to ask your mom, the MTA, how they get off by charging me over $100 for my monthly pass, and yet you make me late to work regularly. I feel like I’m at an expensive restaurant and I have to ask EVERY TIME my water glass is empty. What sort of bullshit service is this? I can’t even not tip you if I wanted to. You’ve got me by the balls and I can’t even ask for a refund.

Maybe you were on a bender like I was, L Train, but it’s time to get your act together. I’ve had enough of this shit. Seriously? The G train is becoming more dependable than you and THAT is saying something. GET. IT. TOGETHER.

Love,
Natalie

/rant

Dear Travis,

February 10, 2011

It’s been awhile since I’ve thought of you. Years. Almost a decade probably. Your absence in my life left a tiny void that nobody ever fills. One I didn’t even notice until the other day. You played such an interesting role in the Natalie show.

I tried emailing you about 5 years ago but your account had been shut down. I actually tried to look you up once. I’m a pretty good internet stalker and I never found you. Not a trace. There’s a chiropractor with your name from near where you’re from but I’m pretty sure he’s not you. The face isn’t the same. But it’s been years since I’ve seen you so I can only imagine what you look like now. You probably cut you hair. I’ll probably hate it.

I’m writing this because I dreamt about you the other night and I’m not sure what it means. In Natalie Fantasy Land, you had the same dream and we were just reuniting on some other dimension. it was too real not to have you have thought of me wherever you are and had some sort of brain-to-brain connection. It shook me a little bit, obviously, but what was weirdest was that it looked like you, but not like you when we were kids, but as we would be now. How I would expect you to look in your mid-twenties. It was you though, definitely you.

The dream went like this: I was in Washington DC with my friends Lesley and Nora, whom you’ve never met and probably have never even heard your name, and we were going to some sort of special speech (nope, it wasn’t Obama, but for some reason, I’m guessing you attempted to go to his inauguration). Long story short, there was an alien invasion. Yep, they were even green. They looked like people, but totally green. Think Tobias Funke when he’s auditioning for blue man group. Anywho, they were dangerous. Like their presence was definitely not good, so Lesley and Nora and I speed walked (not sure why we weren’t running) away from the site, as most people did. They weren’t immediately hostile, but I guess they were just holding down the fort and keeping people out of it. Probably holding someone hostage. Who knows. Point being, the next thing I know I’m at a fruit stand with Lesley and Nora and I think Nora’s mom (who I haven’t seen since I was about 16) and I’m eating watermellon on a stick. Except it doesn’t look like watermellon on a stick. It looks like butternut squash on a stick. Wrap your head around that one. Whatever. I’m standing there eating my watermellon on a stick during an alien invasion and I see you walk past me with a friend. I knew it was you. I didn’t even really see your face, but I caught you double take at me and I knew it was you. I yelled your name, and after you took a few more steps you turned around and recognized me. I don’t think I’ve hugged anyone for so long and so hard as I did you in that dream. It was so real. So odd. I told Nora and Lesley and Nora’s mom I’d be back in a minute and I walked over to meet your friends. Oddly enough you didn’t introduce me, but we could hardly talk as we were just so shocked to see each other. We were just so happy to see each other I don’t even think we really said much. You were in DC just for the day to see whatever speech thing we were originally attending, and I told you there’d been an alien invasion and it wasn’t safe, but you didn’t seem to care (typical) and insisted we go over there anyway. I walked down there, and immediately it was obvious that shit was going down with these aliens. Nobody was around, in fact people were now running. Some of your friends had already high-tailed it outta there, and I grabbed you by the arm and we ran. You kept looking back in shock, but there was nothing to see but the little green men behind us. It was probably shock. I don’t really blame you. We ran back to the fruit cart, but it was gone, as were Nora and Lesley and Nora’s mom. At first I was mad they left and then I realized I had left them so whatever fair game. You told me things would be okay and I believed you. You asked me where the fruit cart had gone.

Then I woke up.

Travis, there are very few things I look back on from my childhood and have found there is no stain from sadness. You are one of those things. You and Canoe, and a handful of other ditties that I don’t really need to get into because a) nobody is reading this, b) you aren’t reading this, and c) if you were reading this I wouldn’t even be talking about this. I would be sucking the life out of every second wanting to hear about your fantastic life and how you don’t drink Komodo Dragon coffee anymore and how you don’t drink coffee anymore because of that year you spent in the Himalayas with some monks. Or you don’t drink coffee cause of the one time you spilled it all over your most important expense report and you were so scarred by the experience you never want to do it again. I don’t know. I really don’t. You had so much potential you could have been anything, or for all I knew, you grew up and threw it all away, kind of like I did. I don’t know why I’m writing this, why I’m sharing this, or if I could even speak to you if this is what I talk about, but know this: thanks for bringing a little glimmer of light back. Your presence reminded me that maybe there is a bit of purity left. I can’t decide whether I’m going to make hunting you down a new project, or if I’m just going to leave fate to cross paths again one day. I don’t even remember how we left things. How things happened or why they did. I just hope you’re well. Not just well. I hope you’re great. I hope you’re having the most amazing life, with or without me.

Love,
Me.

Airplanes

February 8, 2011

These days I’m exhibiting peculiar behavior and wondering where it all went wrong. What I did. Where I fucked up. I’m being told it’s not me… that this is life. It’s how it works. That maybe I’m not doing something wrong (I’m passing immense amounts of judgment on myself) but I question is it really outside of me… is everyone else doing something wrong? Or am I passing judgement for not taking responsibility.

This is all very cryptic and weird and shallow and lame and nobody wants to hear about it anyway.

I’ve taken up bad habits again… bad habits to squash the old bad habits. Habits upon habits upon habits. I feel like I’m an old building where you peel off the wall paper and there’s six layers below. Or one of those signs on subway station walls where someone has torn off part of an ad to reveal layers of pasted images below. Just strips and layers and mess. Habits. Habits a plenty. Barf barf barf barf blah.

It goes pow pow pow pow pow pow pow pow pow pow pow pow pow
Advantages. Advantages.

Gonna go curl up inside a shoe and wait for tomorrow.

Thousands of Miles

February 7, 2011

Funny how comfort exists with distance.

I’m still participating in my vacation from writing this, as I’m too scrambled, too emotionally unstable, and too depressing to write anything worth reading.

My heart is overextended.