September 13, 2010
I made a list of things I would like to do. A lot of people on the internet have made lists like this, although mine is incredibly pedestrian compared to most of theirs. I am okay with that.
1. Become a Canadian citizen
2. Own an opera-length strand of pearls
3. Have a signature perfume
4. Maintain a flowering plant like a rose bush or a peony
5. Publish a short story, essay or article
6. Publish a book
7. Find the perfect pair of jeans
8. Find the perfect (wearable) pair of heels
9. Maintain a well-stocked bar
10. Have curly hair
11. Learn to drive stick (I’m cheating with this one, because I already can. But it was on my mental to-do list for such a long time before I did it so I feel like it counts.)
12. Wear makeup every day for a month
13. Go to Turkey
14. Launch [secret project]
15. Have a weekly column (I have one now, I would like another)
16. Have a regular once a week drinks-after-work group
17. Speak at a conference (I’ve done this, I want to do it again)
18. Give a keynote speech
19. Take voice lessons
20. Buy & wear a bikini that I love
21. Get five new different kinds of dishes (as many as I can of each kind, it doesn’t matter if it’s two or ten)
22. Find a way to eat raw fruits & vegetables without getting sick (right now I get really sick when I eat about 90% of the fruits and vegetables in the world. It makes me sad.)
23. Become the VP of something
24. Volunteer with a hospice organization
25. Launch a proper real-name professional website
September 12, 2010
1. Here is something wonderful: I walk to and from work every day. I live in a big, crowded city and I see, I don’t know, maybe 500 people each time I walk to or from work. Maybe more? (Maybe I should count one day, because I really have no idea.)
2. For a long time—and I sort of mean the first twenty-eight or so years of my life—when I saw people in passing I would immediately rank them: yes, I would like to be that person. No, I would not. Usually it fell about 50/50 yes and no; everything from a cute pair of shoes to a particularly well-composed outfit could make me vote yes. Anyone with spectacular hair was an automatic yes, as was anyone with a lanky, runway-ready figure.
3. Here is the wonderful thing: I realized this summer that I don’t want to be anyone else. I don’t want to be half of the people I see every morning, I don’t even want to be a single one of them. I don’t want to be you, even if you are gorgeous, even if those jeans make your ass look magnificent, even if you are famous and articulate and well-groomed. I am perfectly happy being myself.
4. I am not sure if everyone else is born feeling this way or you all had to come to the realization gradually, like I did, but it is an amazing feeling. I accept myself. Even though my ass looks terrible in these jeans, even though I’m single and portly and I cried all summer, even though I’m divorced! and my best friend is dead and my dog (my dog) suffers from anxiety.
5. I feel two ways about this revelation. One, I am absolutely delighted. Two, I am terrified that I am one Soy Boy brand not-dog away from becoming an insufferable hippie full to brim with love. And for that, I apologize. I have never been a fan of hippies. And neither have you.
September 6, 2010
1. I got mugged about six years ago, when I lived in China, and it was awful. I was beaten up, I was terrified, I was very nearly deported. At the time I lived alone in a big apartment with seven deadbolts on the door and I was so scared of dying or being assaulted again that I barely slept. I was sad and a little loopy most days and then I started to pretend that I was someone that I loved very much who needed to be taken care of. And it was true, of course, I love myself very much. I need to take care of myself. I just wished it had not taken me twenty years to realize that I should care for myself the same way I would care for someone else.
2. This summer felt a lot like that summer. All summer I have cried and cried; my hobbies included sobbing uncontrollably and weeping uselessly. It’s been a long, sad summer, and when I made plans to visit my aunt in the US her friend said, which niece is visiting? The one with the baby or the one who cries all the time? Usually August is the worst month of the year and this year I felt like I had three Augusts in a row. Or maybe twelve. I took care of myself, of course, which mostly meant lots of trips to the park with the dog and ice cream cones in the middle of the day and completely cutting off people who make me feel like shit when I talk to them. It’s September now, which helps, and I’ve just hired someone to repaint the soffit in my apartment, which I am sure will help as well.
(3. My apartment is long and narrow-ish and duct work, covered by a boxy soffit, runs along the ceiling from the front to the back. The previous occupants painted it a pale, Shamrock Shake green, I think because they wanted to see how long it would take me to either repaint it or kill myself.)
4. Since it is September and I am feeling better I am hoping to post more frequently to this page. I am all done crying, Internet! And as it turns out I have so much to say.