It happened two nights ago, and I’m still reliving the accident. I can feel it fading very slightly and slowly into the distance, but then it comes flashing back, and my stomach drops out from within me again. I know it’s going to take time to get over it, but I keep feeling it happen, and I keep…
I don’t know what’s worse: the tragedy that this happened to you or the tragedy that I know exactly what you’re going through. Exactly. I am so sorry… Hope things get better for you, friend.
So here’s what today is begging for: You in a derby hat and me in a sweet vintage dress, tied tight at the waist. I’m thinking a tiny red print…fading flowers or swiss dots, maybe a dying magnolia in my hair. And we’ll dance barefoot to this, two stepping and hip swinging through some big old kitchen, humid air lazing in through an open window. Pausing for low dips that make me smile and laugh and a quick pull of your gin and tonic, sweating on the butcher block table. Pausing to tuck your hair – that has grown long and scruffy in the summer heat - back behind your ear and trace that strong jaw that women miss. Let you lead me in to the other room, this banjo playing on in a sweet muffled soundtrack behind us.
“It’s quite possible
we’re made of air
that we’re deep-down truly made of air
that the rest is just stuff to keep us tied
to the ground
to keep us from flyin.”—Alchemy of Desire/Dead-Man’s Blues, Caridad Svich (via notinmyfuture) (via loveisabigfunnyword)
I held your hand in that eerie green hospital room and placed styrofoam cups of crystal light to your lips while the nurse tested your swollen veins for a new iv. I watched her tape needles to your delicate skin in plastic. I didn’t look away. Even though I wanted to. Even when my mind began to swim in that murky silk of the almost-faint. I stayed, sitting quietly with your hand in mine. Watching the waves of barely disguised anguish pain your cheeks. Watching you, with you, praying silently for something to sink into your bloodstream and leak its magic elixirs like aloe on a burn. Hoping I wouldn’t betray my horror, my own weakness at the sight of those terrifying metal syringes. Later, I doodled absently on my crossword puzzle while you fell into a listless sleep, set at last adrift on clouds of medicine that almost but not quite dulled your pain. Waiting. Hoping you would finally succumb to a few hours cradled in the hands of the night magi.
‘Thank you,’ you whispered in tones barely audible but to the ears of one so close as I left, hours later. ‘Thank you.’
I kissed your forehead, lay my hand to your cheek and whispered, ‘Ssshhh… Hush… Sleep.’
That must count for something, mustn’t it? Make it worth that hit and run asshole who swiped my passenger mirror on the short dark drive home from the hospital? Make it worth the battles I seem to have been fighting all evening with home? Somehow redeem the small feather’s weight of grace I seem now to need more desperately than ever?
“The fluttering in the stomach goes away and the dull waking pain. Sometimes I think of you and I feel giddy. Memory makes me lightheaded, drunk on champagne. All the things we did. And if anyone had said this was the price I would have agreed to pay it. That surprises me; that with the hurt and the mess comes a shaft of recognition. It was worth it. Love is worth it.”—
Need a classy way to cancel dinner plans? TRY THIS EMAIL
[sent by yours truly a few minutes ago to best friends, with whom I was supposed to dine ce soir]
I think I’ll title this ‘Proof God Hates Me’.
1. Food poisoning. That I evidently gave MYSELF. Last night’s from-scratch chicken Caesar salad creation apparently had the seed of the devil in it. THE DEVIL MUST BE FUCKING ITALIAN.
2. Woke up at 3am. Started what can only be described as ‘birth of man’ vom marathon at 6am.
3. Spent next 6 hrs either slumped over toilet bowl or curled in fetal position on bathroom floor. With pillow and bath towel as bedding. I’ve had better mornings.
4. Had to email work that I was ill because I couldn’t risk a phone conversation for fear that I would start yakking mid-sentence to the delight and listening appreciation, surely, of my boss.
5. Have failed any and all attempts to, umm, ‘keep anything down.’ Soup? Nope. Saltine cracker? (note: singular) NOPE. Am currently experimenting with hot tea, and have so far passed the thirty minute test! This is clearly the highlight of my day.
6. I feel terrible not merely because it feels as though someone has taken my entire digestive system and wrung it like a goddamn washcloth (yes, or shamwow), but because this is supposed to be our big night!!! You guys even bumped your dinner hour later! Seriously, this is completely fucked up. Somebody even mentioned crepes. Holy merde. Heaven. And here I am hoping that my ‘taste of summer’ black twinings tea will survive the pit of hell that is my stomach at present. I’d cry but I’m pretty sure I threw up most of my internal water content and probably don’t have enough h2o for a teardrop. I am really goddamn thrilled with my life, really I am.
And that, in short, is my argument in favor of the Divine hating my guts. Literally.
I’ll stay in touch with you all about tonight… If some glory-glitter bedazzled angel shows up and I get the miracle cure, you ladies can bet your sweet asses I’ll drive straight to brip, dirty ‘6 hours of throw-up and I still look hot, goddamn’ hair or not. Julie, do send an owl for madame pomfrey if you have a moment. I could really use her assistance in this matter.
Laying in bed wearing an oversized embroidered sweater that someone’s grandmother either made or owned personally, watching TV with half a tuna fish sandwich in one hand, the other just like, resting on the computer, my mouth partially open, my bangs in my eyes. And like, what if I’d died in that position? What if the rescue crew came in and saw me like that with my legs curled up next to the laptop fan for warmth and my bedside table covered with apple cores and Fig Newton wrappers?
At the funeral my family would just spend the whole time disappointedly talking shit about me. Like, ‘Oh Erika was such a sweet girl! So much potential. And she was so thin and had nice glasses! Then she grew up and got contacts and started smoking and bumming around in large sweaters, what was that about?’
Other members of the family would agree and nod their heads and then take all the free food and put the shrimp in their purses and someone, without a doubt, would take the ring off my finger thinking it was worth something and I’d be looking down (or up, maybe, probably) at them laughing and screaming, ‘It’s Forever 21, bitch!’
The ultimate vengeance.
sweet jesus. swap the apple cores for grapefruit and half-empty cups of tea and THIS IS MY LIFE. right now. at the moment. am tit-deep in stress and mess and xanax and goddamnit I don’t feel well at all either. 2K10 is totally slacking on me, relationship-wise. Lamest boyfriend ever.
also, this little embroidered sweater/sandwich scenario is likely why my mother always told me to wear clean underthings. just in case I get into a car accident (or, you know, actually meet my Maker or something), I’d like to think the ER doc/embalmer’s assistant wouldn’t have to deal with my dirty delicates.
Some (very few) people have posted photos and I think “oh yeah, she totally does look like a poor man’s Sela Ward.” Or whomever. Because let’s face it, none of you guys are movie star-level good looking or you’d be movie stars. So don’t get upset if someone refers to you as “an ugly version of ____”.
But check out how I turn this into a race issue. I’m allowed. It’s Black People Did Some Stuff Or Something Month.
If you are non-white, there are very few people to choose from. Pretty much the only person I could choose would be like, Queen Latifah. We look nothing alike, but the “round-faced, medium brown” women of Hollywood are essentially non-existent.
You know what famous person I look like? KIA MATTHEWS.
Let’s make February a month without razors… no shaving allowed, let us all Build-A-Beard!! It’s time for men to look like men, at least for one month. Let these words inspire you:
“He that hath a beard is more than a youth, and he that hath no beard is less than a man.” — William Shakespeare Much Ado about Nothing. Act II Scene 1
“We have now for many centuries triumphed over nature to the extent of making certain secondary characteristics of the male (such as the beard) disagreeable to nearly all the females - and there is more in that than you might suppose.” —C.S. Lewis
“How womanly it is for one who is a man to comb himself and shave himself with a razor, for the sake of fine effect, and to arrange his hair at the mirror, shave his cheeks, pluck hairs out of them, and smooth them!…For God wished women to be smooth and to rejoice in their locks alone growing spontaneously, as a horse in his mane. But He adorned man like the lions, with a beard, and endowed him as an attribute of manhood, with a hairy chest—a sign of strength and rule.” — St. Clement of Alexandria
Get on it.
Goodbye Manuary. Hello Wiskuary.
I do wonder if St. Clement of Alexandria had any idea how terribly entertaining he was. ‘He adorned man like the lions…’ should really be the first sentence in a gargantuan epic blockbuster film’s banquet scene. I’m thinking Vikings. Or tribal chanting. Or a mostly naked Gerard Butler, whose (grand?)father will obviously be played by Sean Connery.
Think about it, laddiesh. Now read that sentence again and tell me I’m not right on the money here.
Pep talk: Be it a momentary slip up or a monumental fuck up, you can bounce back. Mistakes don’t make you bad! Resuscitate your dignity. Talk your pride off the ledge. Behave like a hero and keep marching past life’s little booby traps.
“Yeah, well… that’s the thing. The reason people get together now is because they think they’re looking for similarly ‘broken’ people. We communicate nowadays through… through damage. Fortunately for you, she’s only fake damaged, and she’s gonna leave you and have a better life with some dope like her who just pretends to be all fucked up. Girls only like the really fucked up guy for the first few months. They prefer, you know… fake broken. Complicated, but, like, ‘Let’s talk about it over chardonnay’ complicated.”— Rudy Holt, Dedication