An essay, a monologue, spoken briskly, and with attitude (and, finesse!).
(A compilation of events that came with, during, and after getting over your other, other half.)
First, let’s analyze what kind of day it is and then add an adjective joined to “-self,” while speaking of myself.
Today is not a day for your usual whimsical-self to get all bent out of shape and out of whack over some lame, bullshit photo that caught your eye in an indie (but, still widely read) magazine or some video you watched for a brief moment before you realized just how mortifying of a video you were actually watching. You trust no body; you especially don’t trust yourself. You’re happy for your long time past love, past loves, past everyone and everything you’ve long left behind. You’re happy for them—but why must you be tested over and over again, to see if you can withhold any tears (of sentiment, right?) back? Why must little photos in hipster tabloids and old hair cuts, returned, be like water hitting a tightly plastered brick wall, that though well-thought out, inevitably, with time, will chip of plaster that will fall to the ground and leave you there standing, you know, naked?
The fact of the matter is, I trust no one. I especially don’t trust myself because there have been many promises that I have made her, only to be broken, mostly broken (or made) in acts of drunk banter and actions. I have sworn to her, myself, that I would never do that again—that that is wrong, that this is wrong—that it’s hard to maintain a friendship with myself, let alone other people, if you continue to act out as you have in the past.
I promise I will avoid third-person POV from now on.
I have a streak, as my mother would say, of spy-related idiosyncrasies, as my ex would say. For instance, if I was placed in a previously and recently inhabited foreign apartment, to live, for one week, I would open cabinets, smell their kitchen spices and shampoos, bend down to corners they themselves had not checked in a long while, all while examining everything I could get my grubby little paws on. I would spend days doing this, as if I were studying their lifestyle, only to make it my own, as if it were a character study. I would do it unconsciously, subconsciously, whatever, not thinking twice of it. I would wonder why they keep the postcards people send them from distances away, in a pile, in a cabinet, under one of their bathroom sinks and not on their fridge.
The meeker end of the proletariats, i.e.: myself, would and should agree, in unison, that as a group that experiences life predominantly through dark and bleak, money-fueled days, we should only allow into our lives what is good, and so obviously so.
That has become my motto. Minus the jazz, it translates directly into someone else’s motto—you are what you eat.
I should not, for instance, go ahead and surround myself with things that trigger depression (alcohol) and I shouldn’t stay off my train-track lifestyle for too long or I will be forced to look, from outside myself, at myself. I will be forced to analyze my dirty Brooklyn life in ways that no lifestyle should be analyzed. I will be forced, absolutely so, to ask myself, what I am doing. And, the answer to that question is not that of any answer, amongst those type questions, that I am interested in finding out.
So, scene: desolate and record-breaking cold Manhattan curb. I’ve requested to meet you, in order to have something of mine that I had left at your apartment last time I had seen you, returned.
Approaches boy, sporting a new (but old, that is all too painfully sentimental) haircut, which induces me to flinch for the split of a second, though I blame it on the cold. He has a cigarette in hand, of course. I, myself, had wondered if I should have lit a cigarette prior to meeting, in order to keep my hands from looking awkward. He’s walking briskly, with an attitude. But, if you really knew him, you would see right through that swagger to an underlining self-doubt and some sort of pseudo-modest, charismatic tactic used for winning the hearts of those whom encounter him, daily.
We don’t stop walking when we finally meet. No eye contact is really made. I’m coy in my own way; I’m sure he thinks I’m acting weird but, in turn, I won’t spend enough time with him for him to tell me that. It takes me some time to warm up to people, and I suppose my old love for him resurfaces from time to time and I find myself hitting it down with a feather-filled pillow, as if it were a nail that was coming up out of a floor board. As if, when my old love for him does resurface, I don’t want it to go away, because of a fond comfort I used to have, just having someone coming home to you every night—an actual companion, who, like myself, also lacked a sense of time, which allowed us to spend the most possible time together. Still, I am thoroughly aware of it’s wrong, so to speak, at this point.
Kiss on the check, one arm-ed hug. With an actual twist of his wrist, he brings out of his pocket what is to be returned to me. I want to thank him profusely and tell him that he’s saved my night but I don’t find the words and somehow I feel my face giving away to a look that must look as though everything in the world is his fault; everything that is wrong in my life, especially. Though that is complete and utter bullshit, I cannot seem to hide these looks that appear blankly and without warning, on my face, from time to time.
We cross the street. Mind you, he’s on the way to his new girlfriend’s house. He has no problem telling me so. I have no real problem hearing so, either, except that I’m not yet accustomed to what the “right” reaction would be. He’s carrying a six-pack, in a grocery bag. The wind is howling hard through Manhattan’s keen cutout grid. This time, through the streets, which makes it easier to walk down Hudson. About ten yards later, he informs me,
“This is me.”
The six-pack (plus) of beer he used to bring home to our life together every night is now being brought home to someone else’s life, in the West Village. Lord knows I’m thoroughly jealous of the location of the apartment in which I bid him goodbye, again, with a kiss on the cheek and a one-armed hug. I imagine he walked to work today, all of three blocks, from her apartment in the West Village. I imagine he appreciates this, as oppose to resenting it in any sensible way, like he sometimes did when he spent nights at my place.
(Me, however, the next morning.)
I will wake up in a chilled loft in Hoboken, to my speedy notboyfriend who is running late for work. I have a terribly inconvenient high, lingering within my hangover. I notice a familiar small, insert-type magazine on the desk and proceed to thumb through it, after my notboyfriend is far out the door. It contains a photo of a scene-y, hipster girl that was once the cause of infidelity in my former relationship. What is she doing in this magazine, portraying herself as the socialite I have found it so hard to become? The look of her face doesn’t make me cringe anymore; I no longer see it amongst all the faces in crowded subway car. I will now, most likely, see another face, from a video I came across, also this morning. This video nearly makes me want to run to the side of those who don’t believe in sex before marriage, ignoring my seasoned sexuality, believing in God and a marriage between a man and woman and all those deserving in the world, in the most basic sense.
We somehow manage to shoot the shit about the industry before we separate, dropping some names and happening interviews. He must have noticed my haze, as he asks me if I’m strung out. I reply, instantaneously with something like, yes, I’m-so-totally-fucked-up-right-now. I immediately regret saying that, thinking I must have sounded like a teenager getting drunk for the first time on grape juice and beer at some campout in the woods. He asks if it was coke, and again, I jump to say yes, as only to get a reaction out of him, when actually, I was not on coke at all. I just have an eternal cold feeling in my bones that is causing me to shiver, though my flesh looks pink and somewhat lively. In actuality, I have just had a fine full-course tasting with marijuana-based butter used in every dish, times as many times as the chef could incorporate marijuana into his cooking, at a trendy restaurant I frequent that my notboyfriend used to cook at. This happens strictly in New York, as I started my day seemingly normal, beside my impressive five breakfast beverages of coffee, tea, vitamins dissolved in water, orange juice and a glass of water. I started my evening, however, in supermodel, Gisele Bundchen’s unfinished (but equally as ravishing) five-floor townhouse in the West Village, only then to trot around from happy hour to happy hour until the happy hours diminished and the epicurean food drenched in tetrahydrocannabinol rolled in.
He tells me he loves me. I reply back, but our “love” is not exchanged in the way someone who is crying may be consoled by someone else, where I imagine saying “I love you,” then to be as utmost sincere as it can, and ought to, be. It’s said in the way I tell my mother that I love her at the end of each and every phone call, in case something happened to her sometime after, in between, or before the last time I told her, rhetorically and evenly-spoken, as insurance for the well-being of my own conscience.
I walked away briskly, my pocketed-hands pulling towards themselves, as to block the wind from my exposed chest. At this point, I now begin to replay our encounter, as I walk back to the dive-bar where I am finishing up my night. I’m glad I have my item returned to me, but I more so hope I made a quick impression to be thought of later, but am convinced I didn’t. I’m constantly hoping for that kind of Hollywood in my life.
I return to my last stop of the evening, to my notboyfriend and his best friend’s side. They are quiet as I approach the table and I ask if I’ve really been gone for that long, as it only felt like a brief moment, which I’m still certain it was, though I was told otherwise.
I feel like my notboyfriend is missing something that pertains strictly to an unidentified personality trait that I must posses. Something relating to some deeper emotions that I can identify easily when I’m shamefully riding the subway and the bus home in the “morning”, hung-over and bleary-eyed, but not so easily when I’m up-talking my latest job or rambling on about trendy black dresses that go with trendy, new restaurants, etc. As if, this emotion is a mania that is only with me partially because if I possessed it concurrently with my day-to-day way of life, I would see the world as an opaque and somewhat delusional gray. I think I would be worse than those people who, while listening to music through their headphones on mass transportation, sing allowed, insisting on letting us know what they’re listening to, as if they were paid to advertise it. For some reason, I think those people are the “crazy people” and not the people who are more like myself, whom see things in colors of emotions depending on whether it’s raining nostalgia or not that day.
I also think that my notboyfriend is hiding something from me, in the same way I thought my arch nemesis/ infatuation in high school was hiding something from everyone, which I think, at this point can be marked not as alluring, but really, an absence of anything at all.
That is an incredibly frustrating thing to detect, trying to find something that you’re not sure is even there. Similarly, like the argument of God’s existence, only scaled way (mother-fuckin’) down.
The question really being, do I spend my time searching and believing, or walking and talking, there after?
On the topic of examining someone else’s life, if I was dropped into it abruptly, with them unable to fix anything, not even a crooked framed-photo on the wall in their foyer that they’ve noticed on their abrupt dismissal, through the front door—
I am always searching for the bad, the evil, the negative, and the dirty. And, with that said, I am always coming up from under water with my head bobbing, because I am in some depths, waving what I’ve freshly found while trying not to drown, because ignorance is definitely that bliss they speak of that keeps us afloat and I mostly wish I was smart enough to be ignorant, nowadays.
One may think in conclusion to reading this that I have lost faith in trust and love, which above money and war, unequivocally seems to be the basis of how mankind continues on, through the treacherous waters. And on some days I think, I have, because I have lost the trust and love in myself on my worst days. But somehow, we all have this tick, this mechanism that allows us to forget, move on and bounce-back from, change and evolve what and whom we surround ourselves with. Thus, we fool ourselves and we do it all over again—we fall in love again, we kill again, we cheat again, and we cry again, because it is only the dates and characters that have changed, as we are naturally and consistently attracted to the same happiness, and misery, alike.
a victoria p
07 March 2007
An essay, a monologue, spoken briskly, and with attitude (and, finesse!).