I am sorry for the delay, but this last month has been incredibly difficult. I am still trying to get my mind together. And though it physically burns to recall the last couple weeks, I am going to try and make it mean something.
A month and change ago was my first night in the Boonies, Frank and I went on a hunt for wine. We wanted to break in this bitch the right way.
It was midnight, and we went down to a small bar off the road called “The Hideaway.” It was closed. So we went to the 711 down the hill.
I had wet hair from a fresh shower and was wearing a red sun dress with my B cup bosom jiggling in place. The Middle-Eastern man with a turban muttered that there is no alcohol sold after 10 pm. Frank was alarmed by this and rose his New York voice, “ANYWHERE?”
711 Man said, “Another 711 down Foothill does, off of (broken English)” I asked him to repeat the cross street three times and I didn’t understand it any of those three times.
We drove down to the next 711, several miles down the main street. I walked in and saw the magazine cover saying, “Think of the Children of 9/11.”
I said, “I do not want to think about the children of 9/11. That is the last thing I want to think about.” I turned to another Middle Eastern guy, “Alcohol?” He shook his head and repeated another cross street in broken English I didn’t understand.
We hopped in Frank’s car and drove to the Taco Bell. As we pulled up to the lit menu, we waited. I said, “Hello!?!?”
The lit menu went dark.
Frank, “Oh that’s great. (into speaker) GOODNIGHT TO YOU TOO, MAN, THANKS!”
We drove several more miles down the road and found a 711 with cars in the parking lot.
Frank said, “Everyone is here, this must be the place.”
We walked in and I turned to the new Middle Eastern guy in a turban and said, “Alcohol?” He slowly nodded, then rang up two girls buying a pint of Bud Light Chelada beer each. (That is a Bud that’s clam and tomato juices)..
Voted on of the worst beers of 2010 . . . Read more: http://www.esquire.com/features/drinking/worst-beer-051710#ixzz1bdsTsYEO
We grabbed a bottle of vino and headed back to the pad. I was still doing coke and xanax. My body was acclimating to the point where I was able to sleep and eat on it. This week I was going to stop, after my first night in the new pad . . . I was going to get clean.
Now that I was home, I could relax.
The weekend after I moved into the new place, Alan planned on stopping by after a dinner celebration of some kind affiliated with his school.
I was nervous. Since I worked so hard to get him back, with my texts of love, support, puppies and rainbows, I was having doubts. I thought about the words he used to criticize me. They weren’t just cold judgements and insensitive criticisms . . . they were meant to hurt me.
Around 3am, Alan arrived with Pepsi, candy and Wilson. We coldly hugged, but didn’t kiss. I didn’t want to think he could get away with it, but I wanted him back. Seems human enough.
We watched The Soup, giggled and fell asleep side by side, like we were laid in graves next to each other.
The next morning, he put my hand on his morning wood. Now, I don’t know about you, but the last thing I wanted to do after moving all my shit alone is give HIM a hand job.
I said, “The things you said did a lot of damage.”
He said, “I know. So were some of the things you said.”
Hm. Yeah. Right.
I said, “We have to talk.”
We got up, and walked the dogs. We barely spoke. The tension between us was getting heavier.
I said, “Did you really mean the things you said?”
He said, “Yeah, I did.”
I said, “How can you say things like that?” You were so disrespectful.”
He said, “Every time I checked my phone, it was wah wah wah, whining about something happening in your life. And I got sick of it.”
I stopped and turned around, “ . . . fuck you.”
We went back to my place, more silence.
I mentioned something about not getting roles and he said, “I think it’s because you give off an air of being poor.”
This kid grew up with Southern white trash. I said, “You don’t put the napkin on your lap when you eat out, that is an indication that you are low-class.”
I turned on my toe, nose in the air and walked out to smoke a cigarette. WHAT AN ASSHOLE!
I was 2 days sober, and decided this was the wrong day to quit coke. So I started doing lines and cracked open another bottle of wine.
Angry, yes. Frustrated, yes. Horny . . . um, yeah.
So we had sex. Our fetishes, once again, were taken to another level. He was dark and sexy.
He said, “You have been frowning this whole time, that makes me want to do even worse things to you.”
I said, “Good. Do them.”
The wine was making me dizzy and the coke wouldn’t let me pass out. He suggested I take a xanax so I wouldn’t get sick.
I took half of one and slipped into inviting darkness.
Waking up in a daze, just for a moment, I felt him moving my head off his shoulder by my hair. He pulled my hair during sex, but I remember thinking it was oddly objectifying. He took my head by the top of my hair, lifted it off his shoulder and dropped me back down on a pillow. Jesus, SOCIOPATH MUCH?
Then back into darkness.
I woke up the next morning, and he said he was going to walk the small dogs. I said I would join him, but he was out the door before both my shoes were on.
Stepping outside, I looked both ways, he was nowhere to be found. So I took the girls up a mountain trail further than we have gone before.
When I came back, he said, “Your walk was a lot longer than mine.”
I said, “I told you to wait for me.”
He said, “No ,you didn’t.”
I said, “Yeah … I did.”
We quietly went to breakfast at a local cafe. I had an 11am meeting at Doggie Daycare, and he had to head back for some other law school event.
It was the anniversary of 9/11, so the television had relatives taking turns at the podium, reading names of those that died.
The wall had images of Princess Diana, Lucille Ball, and Mother Theresa painted on the walls. It’s a very confused motif.
Names of the Dead.
I said, “9/11 was an inside job. By the way, I can’t give myself an orgasm since we broke up, so thanks for that.”
Alan, “That is the most bizarre segue I have ever heard.”
I said, “We have to talk about the GChat conversation.”
He said, “No we don’t. Just let it go.”
I said, “Um, we have to make sure that never happens again. We have to talk it out.”
He said, “We don’t have to talk it out, you just have to stop putting yourself in the position of being a victim all the time.”
Me, “And you need to stop expecting your girlfriend to fulfill the role of your mother.”
Christ, after his finals I SPOON FED HIM CANNED PEARS and massaged him all night long. After moving my shit in financial distress, I can’t even get a neck rub.
He studied what was left on his plate. Then his head slowly nodded.
He said, “Let’s get out of here.”
As we drove up a steep canyon road, I pressed further.
Me, “If you just want a debutant type girl, who is agreeable and doesn’t really talk very much than I am sure you can find that.”
Alan broke out shouting, “That’s not what I want. You used to make me feel good. When I got text messages from you, or called you, you made me feel confident and happy. Now you just make me feel bad. You complain about all the bad things happening and you make me feel bad. I am afraid to say anything around you because you might shut down. Its like walking on egg shells around you. FUCK!”
For some reason, listening to him shout it made me feel better. His calm, leveled, robotic tone of voice changed. He was human and he cared.
I said very calmly, “Well you do have a point. I can be overly sensitive. I will try to work on that. Obviously, I have developed a pattern for people close to me unleashing lots of criticism. Its you, its Em it was my old roommate. It means something. It has to do with me and something I am doing.”
Alan, “And I have a pattern of driving people close to me away by being too honest. I just won’t do that anymore.”
I said, “You can be honest.”
He shook his head.
Alan and I came together and walked up to my place, put the leftovers in the fridge. I had to go.
We kissed. He was soft again.
He said, “See, now its moments like this when it’s hard to say goodbye. When I don’t want to leave.”
I kissed him again and mumbled an “I love you” I am not sure he heard.
As I pulled away, he walked up to my window and kissed me again. He said, “I love you too much not to work it out.”
I flickered a smile. He was saying what he thinks he should say.
The week following was one of the worst in my life.
My dog, Maggie (who I call “The Tank” because she is 80 lbs of pit bull lovin’), broke out of her collar and charged towards two unfriendly dogs, instigating a dog fight. I fell to the ground and broke it up.
Her ear bled quite a bit and my knees and hands ached from falling on concrete. That was the wrong day to quit cocaine.
Two days later, I found out one of my new neighbors complained that my dogs were “intimidating” and the landlord called and said I had to get rid of my dogs or clear the residence.
I indicated I had two dogs on the application. The landlord claimed he never got my application, and Dora claimed she sent it. It was a mess.
I cried and muttered to Dora and her boyfriend, Danny, “I should just kill myself.”
Dora said, “No, we will work this out.”
I spent my last dollar and drop of energy moving into this place, and now I had to move again? It was like someone ripped out my rib cage and told me to keep breathing.
I got on the phone with the landlord and begged to stay. He wouldn’t budge. He said I could stay until I had enough money to move but there were too many dogs between me and Dora. He said, “I mean, there are more animals than people on the property.”
We hadn’t even told him about my cat or Brad.
I posted my misery on Facebook because I just don’t know what else to do with it but recycle it on the internet. Frank came with me to the bank and Taco Hell.
Alan called, but I declined the call. We just went through how my never-ending storm of bad luck was dragging him down. I couldn’t rely on him for support right now.
Trent texted me, and I responded promptly with a “I am gonna kill myself.” Trent was trying to talk me down, as I had done for him when he and Kent broke up.
In my mind, I started orchestrating plans to relocate all the animals. Brad could go to my sister. Maggie with Frank. I found a place to order 700 mg of secobarbital tablets on-line. It was just Esther . . . no one wants a hyper-active, deaf pit-bull. What was I going to do with Esther?
I went to work, tear-stained, heart-broken and as I entered the large dog playground, the dogs got restless. They could smell the darkness on me.
A few dogs started howling and barking. Then more.
I waited for everyone to calm down, went back to the front of the playground to put down my keys when Sawyer, my Irish Setter Doggie Rapist, mounted me for our ritualistic “hello.” Another dog came up and snagged him by the back side.
I thought I broke it up and separated the two but the aggressive dog came in again and pulled us both to the ground again. I held on to Sawyer with my life, even though all the wounds on my knees and hands broke open again hitting the concrete.
I could hear Sawyer screaming in pain as I tried to drag him to one of the “runs” (a gated entry into an enclosed space between the playground and the walkway).
A manager appeared through a run and we tried carrying him through but I heard Trent’s voice say, “Stop pulling him! He’s locked on. GET THE STICK! GET THE STICK!”
There is a stake kept on the playground that we can use to pry open a dog’s jaw. Trent said he has only used it twice in 5 yrs.
I waited patiently as Sawyer writhed in pain. There was a release and he was lifted, as if he had wings, into safety. The other dog was taken into another run.
The manager in the run said, “Is your face ok?”
I said, “Yeah.”
She said, “He was chomping away right next to your face, I thought he bit you.” Sawyer would never bite me.
I looked down and saw blood trickle down her wrist and hand. I was lucky.
Another manager said, “Are you ok?” Tears filled my eyes and I was told to take a break.
I went into the bathroom to urinate, and on the toilet I felt my whole body erupt. My legs and arms shook and I broke down crying for approximately 10 seconds. I got up and washed my face.
I went back out there and finished my shift. Also, the wrong day for quitting cocaine.
Trent asked me some questions and kept promising we would get through it. At Doggie Daycare, we all help each other get through hard times. Everyone uses the royal “we” when we talk through each other’s problems. That place is better than any church or community I have ever belonged to.
Trent’s voice guided me through the violent dog fight with Sawyer, and now the violence of my own mind. He is my twin flame. He identifies with my dark side, and takes the role in the light when I fall low. It is a unique balance with him, and is slowly becoming one of the most precious friendships of my life.
On my 3pm break, I sat in my car and smoked a cigarette. Doggie Daycare is in a very industrial area, so the exhaust from the cars and buildings scorched my nose and throat, over the rash of smoke and cocaine.
I felt like a 19th century London Chimney Sweep.
I turned on the radio, Bob Dylan’s voice came on:
“Oh, the ragman draws circles
Up and down the block
I’d ask him what the matter was
But I know that he don’t talk.”
“But deep inside my heart
I know I can’t escape
Oh, Mama, can this really be the end
To be stuck inside of Mobile
With the Memphis blues again.”
I thought, is this the end? Office job or death, I will choose death.
A friend once suggested I take a desk job at a construction company or something, and I told him, “You know what writers actually wrote with a full-time job? Kaftka. And he was miserable. (beat) AND all of his novels were unfinished. THANK YOU, NO!”
Kaftka’s insurance job paid the bills but robbed me of closure when finishing Amerika. Think of all the other novels he could have written if he didn’t handle personal injury insurance . . .
Jerry, my friend, said, “AND he was insane.”
Then I remembered something Alan mentioned. He was trying to encourage me to go back to school and suggested writing from reading a couple of my blogs. He said loans could float me for a couple of years while I do what I love. Maybe he was right, I could write on loan until the economy improved.
Then I could worry about getting a job later down the road, without giving up in my thirties.
Obviously, I would have to give up on acting, since Alan did point out I don’t have the resources for it. My catch phrase these days is “Acting is for Hookers and Housewives.” Paying your way on someone else’s dime. I don’t have a sponsor, so it’s not possible for me right now.
Writing, though . . . the greatest writer’s in the world ate bread and wine in the cheapest of clothes and the smallest of rooms. That could be me.
“Well Shakespeare he’s in the alley
With his pointed shoes and his bells
Speaking to some French girl
Who says she knows me well”
I got out of my car, high on nicotine, and came back to the playground with my head high. I told Trent about my revelation, and he smiled. We sang the “Memphis Blues” together.
The rest of the week lacked drama. I made in appointment to go to an information session for one of the top 5 writing programs in the country. I fell in love, and called Alan on the phone driving back. I was still high on coke and chattering a million miles a second.
He told me to rest, and I could tell he was being laboriously patient with my self-induced hyper-mania. I was happy. I thought I could make it work.
It became apparent in the days following that Alan did not want to make plans to see me again right away. Sure he was busy, but I was sold on this idea that we needed to re-bond.
His snappy criticisms were still pinned into my heels and I wanted to start over and fall in love again.
He blew off the first few offers I made to drive down, and I blew off Frank’s suggestion that Alan was seeing someone else. Men love to try to bury seeds of doubt in my mind. Base manipulation.
Either way, I was feeling rejected and as I started collecting his words for previous blogs, I grew aggravated with the things he said again.
If we lived in the same city, I am sure we would have had a more civilized parting, but email makes it too easy to destroy. Just as we found each other on the internet again, we would lose each other just as easily.
I wrote: “I have identified two times you mentioned I look poor or like “a bag lady”. Um . . . you should know that I am not EVER going to be like Jaq. I don’t give a shit about clothes, and though I know how to look presentable and have been cast in roughly 60% of the roles I have auditioned for, not to mention receiving offers after an estimated 70% of job interviews in a professional place of business, I do not hold value in that system.
The Armani Folders can shove it up their ass. If that’s what you want to be, I can’t be there with you. You can’t change that part of me.
That said, take a look in the mirror, Sport. Don’t expect me to be “better” than you because I am a girl; morally, physically, or otherwise.
I am not mad, just agitated. And we hardly ever talk anymore so I am just sending an email with my feelings in it.”
I can see how out of the blue this might annoy my boyfriend.
Alan: “This habit of continuing to look through every conversation to find
ways I hurt your feelings and then pointing them out to me is pretty
much the reason we barely talk anymore. Then I have to waste any time
we talk figuring out what is actually wrong with you and then
explaining the context of my words so that a five-year old can
understand. Or not talking at all so you don’t have ammo to fuck with
me later. My choice with you is either have a shitty conversation
like this one or not talk to you.
Why would I want to have this conversation? Why do you think that
it’s important for me to feel worse about myself in the middle of a
Thursday? You can’t resist can you?
Between these passive aggressive insulting emails (“look in a mirror”)
and the bullshit you post about me on Facebook, I’m so sick of your
words. I am not here to be shit on by you and I’m tired of forgiving
it. I don’t want an explanation or more excuses. I just want it to
Other people have feelings too. Get over yourself or leave me alone, Sport.
I wrote back: “Absolutely nothing passive aggressive about that email. Its straight forward.
As for dealing with my thoughts and feelings alone without sharing them with you, that makes me feel like a victim. I would like to stand up for myself without you feeling attacked.
It also makes me feel single.
Communication is important, in fact, imperative, to any relationship. If you are open to making things work, you have to talk and listen to me.
And treat me like an equal, not a 5-year-old. (that was rude, Alan).”
I guess I should mention here that I was sucking back a martini and quitting cocaine and cigarettes that day. It was a little rough.
Alan: “We are single. And you don’t get to say whatever you want to me
for a while. It’s unfair since the door doesn’t go both ways. When
*I* say what I am thinking, I get emails weeks later telling me how
wrong I was. Now, I’m too stressed out to deal with this bullshit
this week. I’ll just talk to you after the thing on Saturday.”
Me: “Thank you for correcting me, I don’t have to worry about working on a relationship. Sweet relief.
The door of criticism has blown one way. Have I ever said anything negative about you, your character, your life, your looks? No, Because I fucking love you.
I am simply defending myself because I don’t like feeling cut down by someone I let inside.
My hope was to diminish the negative by airing it out and talking about it, as opposed to building up resentment and bitterness with silence.
I thought it was important we rebond but you don’t seem to share that concern.
You want to harness power and tell me when I can speak to you again? No.
Equal or nothing.”
Alan: “If you insist on a choice, fine. I choose nothing.
Building a relationship will take a lot more time now. I live a
different life than I did over the summer. I had time this summer to
bond with you. I tried. I warned you over and over what I was going
to go through this Fall. You wasted all of that effort when you broke
up with me because you can’t handle me speaking. Well now I’m not
speaking. Go figure. I don’t have time to rebuild that bond now.
I’m working two jobs AND in law school. I do not have enough time as
it is to do what I need to do. I won’t for months, and nagging me
about it is just making me resent you.
Don’t wait for me. Go have a life.”
Me: “I have a life, I was just including you in it.
I feel no regret. I tried. Bye.”
And just like that, Alan disappeared. A few taps on a phone and a keystroke on computer can burn down a relationship in a little under three hours.
I was upset sure, but I lit my wings on fire and was spinning around in circles. The silence and distance, and stress and chemicals were putting me in a whirlwind.
After all was said and done, I went home and took the Molly I saved for a night with Alan. I got in bed and cuddled with my dogs. Joy and warmth bubbled all over my skin, and I felt ok for the night. The morning would hurt, but the nights are mine.
I texted Abe (my ex-boyfriend): “I do hope you are happy. Loved u.”
He wrote back, “Nah, not so much. Thought about U during my lunch today.”
Frank tried crawling in bed and asked for a little “affection.” I drowned myself in dog fur and said, “Not now, I am in a delicate state.”
I needed to collect myself. First, one more devastating tragedy was about to occur and completely level my world.