“It’s become so obvious. You are so oblivious to yourself. You’re tied in a knot, but I’m not gonna get caught calling a pot kettle black.” ~Wilco
I just finished reading Porcelain, the first memoir by Moby, and it was absolutely fascinating. I didn’t think I had any preconceived notions about him, and yet my mouth was open nearly the entire first half. What hit me the most was when he talked about all the random sex, all the one night stands he had, being part of the raver scene in NYC in the 1990’s.
One liaison bled into the next on the page. Maybe I’m just not used to people being so open about their sexual experiences, or maybe I’m just shocked at how many people become part of a scene, not knowing what it entails, and yet it gets grafted onto their ideals in bits and pieces until the scene is indistinguishable from them. They become like interchangeable bodies, not even names at that point, not even human beings by then, just robots programmed for these kinds of relationships that aren’t real relationships.
I often read a poem to my English 102 students; it’s by Sharon Olds, and it’s called “Sex Without Love.” It says, “How do they do it, the ones who make love / without love?” The idea is that even the words we use to describe sex aren’t always adequate, that they are often not up to date with how society is defining the entirely physical relationships. I guess to me it’s always been this feeling of, “Can you separate these two parts of yourself, the physical and the emotional?” Continue reading “The Black Pot and Kettle”
“Write about a piece of jewelry you own. Where did it come from? When do you wear it?”
This one isn’t too tough, but only because I have never really owned that much jewelry. Growing up in a strictly religious home helped me in that regard, as both my mother and my sister had minimal jewelry (if any at all). It was all about the “temple of God,” or what you had on the inside, that was supposed to really count. Which was why it was funny that, despite this directive, we were decked out to the 9’s every Saturday at church service. Quite funny.
Anyway, as I’ve gotten older I’ve felt the need for a little outward adornment. At various points in my life I’ve had a couple necklaces (I guess guys should call them “chains,” but they really weren’t), a couple bracelets (one of them was a faux Livestrong one that left a green ring around my wrist), and a few rings, for good measure. While the necklaces, and the bracelets, are pretty much long gone, festooned on the island of my history, I do still have two rings.
Sorry, Golem, not just one precious.
But yes, really, only the latest ring is precious to me. Continue reading “300 Writing Prompts: #148”
I got my first CD player the summer between 11th and 12th grade. I was doing an internship, making my own money for once, and when that first paycheck came in I felt RICH. I don’t even remember how much it was now, but I was decidedly not rich. I just felt like it in the moment, the way you do when your mom’s still paying for everything so you can focus specifically on your wants.
That was me.
And what I wanted was a CD player. I already had some CD’s, one I won from a radio station contest, and another couple I bought in anticipation of the CD player. It was the early ’90s, so tapes were still very much in vogue, at least where I came from. If you had CD’s you were on the cutting edge of tomorrow. I wanted to be on that edge, but I would have to be able to play them.
So I went to Sears and picked one out. It was a single disc player. I mean, I was suddenly rich, but I wasn’t so rich my eyes weren’t bugged out by the prices of the multi-disc changers. Besides, I thought eventually I would trade in my single for a multi, so why not start small? Continue reading “Sunday Shuffle [2.0]”
“This old heart of mine, been broke a thousand times. Each time you break away, seems like you’ve gone to stay.” ~The Isley Brothers I am no love expert. I feel like I should qualify that first. Love is not always sunshine and roses. I feel the need to qualify that second. Because, while love … Continue reading Love Lessons
The sign by the pool says, “No diving under five feet,” and I always wonder if it shouldn’t be six. I always wonder if no one should dive at all. But I don’t say anything. I don’t want to disturb anyone, even from getting a cracked head.
I sit there on the edge, staring at the sign, feeling drowsy because chlorine always makes me drowsy. I will probably drown someday if I stay in the pool long enough. Maybe I should have my mom check the box so I don’t have to swim anymore, like she did with gym class.
The others splash about in the deep end. The sign over there says, “Only with a lifeguard present,” and I imagine the skinny high schooler standing up and saying, “I’m present,” when he sees the sign. Of course he’s reading a book, it’s Moby Dick, but I don’t think that’s allowed. There should be a sign to tell him that.
“It’s your turn to swim, Thom,” Miss Myrtle tells me. Her hand is on my shoulder. I don’t like it when people touch me without asking. I don’t like many things, but Miss Myrtle smells like the beach, and I forgive her for it. It’s not enough to make me swim, though.
“Thom, we go through this every Thursday,” she says, when I don’t speak up. Continue reading “Sign Language”
“Reckless abandon wrapped in common sense. Deep water faith in the shallow end, and we are caught in the middle” ~Casting Crowns
I stood on the edge of a future fraught with possible landmines, I had no idea if I even wanted to jump, and who would have blamed me for standing still? Believe me, I was the last person to know what I wanted in that moment, in the pause that seemed to stretch into forever with how long I waited it out.
Looking back, I was hoping a decision would be made for me, that things would be packaged up and all I would have to do is put the bow on it. But that’s not how life happens, not often enough anyway. What life does is it waits until we’ve finally made the decision, then it changes our plans, whether we like it or not.
So what was I waiting for?
You could say I was always the one to look before leaping anyway, that I would generally weigh all possible options before wading in, or I wouldn’t wade in at all. I can’t tell you how many opportunities passed me by while I was sitting there waiting to make a decision (or 20).
I’m not sure if it was being careful, meticulous, or just indecisive, but it seemed to work relatively well for me. Continue reading “Caught in the Middle”