getting specific: life list

Originally posted 4.13.2013

So. I saw this 1,000 things list on Amy Guth’s blog the other day. And as is my habit, my first reaction was just pure jealousy. Like, gah. Why does she get to make this cool, rad list of shit to do? I’m sure she’s going to get to do it, too.

And then I heard the god voice: HEY! Make your own list. You’ve had a running list of shit that you’ve had floating in your head since ever. Just write it down. You’ve probably written it down on the blog before. So what? Write it down AGAIN.

She references a couple of other lists in her list. This guy’s 1,000 things list. The impossible list. How to write a life list from Chris Guillebeau, who Margaret loves.

So. I’m going to write my life list. I’m just going to start writing, and then maybe I’ll come back and re-organize. I’m going to link it to “Best of Smussyolay” so I can come back and edit, cross out, etc. I will also borrow from those other lists things I like. Here we go.

1. Learn to play guitar.
2. Ride in a hot air balloon.
3. Learn to speak fluent Spanish.
4. Learn to speak fluent French.
5. Drive a race car.
6. Drive the Autobahn.
7. Travel Europe for at least a month alone.
8. Travel Europe for three months total.
9. Obtain dual citizenship in another country.
10. Go to India.
11. Learn American Sign Language.
12. Have my own national talk show.
13. Be in a major motion picture.
14. Write and publish my book about manic-depression.
15. Write and publish my book about M*A*S*H.
16. Write and publish my memoir book(s).
17. Write and publish my book about Jesus/Christianity/spirituality.
18. Write and publish a daily meditation book.
19. Get a installation in a contemporary art museum.
20. Do a one-woman show.
21. Create a successful stand-up routine.
22. Meet Paul McCartney.
23. Meet Alan Alda.
24. Create a music festival with The Avett Brothers, Centro-Matic, Lucero, and others.
25. Write and publish my book about Frisbie.
26. Get the Avett Brothers interested in doing a book/s of sheet music for their records.
27. Get the Avett Brothers interested in doing a coffee table book of lyrics/illustrations/interviews with me.
28. Get Scott Avett to do a portrait of me.
29. Get new headshots done.
30. Lose 60 pounds.
31. Take a 500+ mile train trip.
32. Spend at least a month in Austin, TX.
33. Spend at least a month in Los Angeles, CA.
34. Spend at least a month in Portland, OR.
35. Spend at least a month in Alaska.
36. Spend at least a month in Hawaii.
37. Spend at least a year in NYC.
38. See the Redwood Forest.
39. See the Grand Canyon.
40. Go to Medieval Times.
41. Go to a Renaissance Faire.
42. Own a Greyhound.
43. Own a Wire Haired Fox Terrier or an Airedale.
44. Learn how to become a beekeeper.
45. See the Christmas Tree lighting in NYC.
46. See the Rockettes.
47. See a Broadway play during its first run.
48. Go to Thailand.
49. Learn to tap dance.
50. Learn to play harmonica.
51. Learn to play piano.
52. Read every work of Shakespeare and learn to speak intelligently about it.
53. Learn to start a fire from scratch.
54. Learn to shoot a gun.
55. Learn to waterski.
56. Visit the Vatican.
57. Visit the Eiffel Tower.
58. Visit the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
59. Visit the Smithsonian.
60. Visit the White House.
61. Meet Barack Obama.
62. Meet Bill Clinton.
63. See a taping of The Daily Show.
64. Meet Jon Stewart.
65. See a taping of The Colbert Report.
66. Meet Steven Colbert.
67. See a taping of The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson.
68. Meet Craig Ferguson.
69. Finish my “famous meetings” list.
70. Go to law school.
71. Go to seminary.
72. Take a cross-country road trip and make a film about it.
73. Walk across the Brooklyn Bridge.
74. Walk across the Golden Gate Bridge.
75. Visit the Gentle Barn.
76. Visit Cline’s Antiques.
77. Learn how to do a handstand.
78. Buy/own a graystone.
79. Own a sports car — Porsche/BMW, etc.
80. Write a screenplay.
81. Go apple picking.
82. Go strawberry picking.  Did this summer 2013 with Melisa Wells, Tracey Becker, Tracey’s daughter and my niece!!!
83. See the Northern Lights.
84. Learn to surf.
85. Have a garden.
86. Have nude pictures taken of myself.
87. Get my breasts painted for charity.
88. Record books for blind people.
89. Get paid voiceover work.
90. Visit the Holy Land.
91. Visit the Pyramids.
92. Learn CPR.
93. Travel Italy.
94. Visit the Holocaust memorials.
95. Visit historical sites in Washington DC.
96. Learn about and travel the sites of the Underground Railroad.
97. Own and raise some sheep.
98. Fast for 24 hours.
99. Do a proper juice fast/cleanse.
100. Engage in a regular yoga practice.
101. Engage in a regular meditation practice.
102. Take a cooking class.
103. Get a “good” set of knives.
104. Have a “signature” dish.
105. Visit Australia.
106. Visit Disney World.
107. Visit Disney Land.
108. Get invited to and visit Club 33.
109. Visit Costa Rica.
110. Visit Machu Picchu.
111. Do a sweat lodge with a Native American medicine man/woman.
112. Get a facial.
113. Attend a coffee club meeting in Spanish.
114. See Fleetwood Mac live in concert.
115. See James Taylor live in concert.
116. See Bruce Springsteen live in concert.
117. Go see a concert at Red Rocks.
118. Attend the Austin City Limits music festival.
119. Attend the South by Southwest music festival.
120. Attend the South by Southwest tech festival.
121. Go hang gliding.
122. See Hall and Oates live in Concert.
124. See Huey Lewis and the News live in concert.
125. Get a pedicure.
126. Ride a segway.
127. Ride a century bike ride.
128. Own a boat.
129. See the Blue Man Group.
130. See a Cirque de Soleil show.
131. Do a Polar Bear Plunge.
132. Catch up on at least 50 literary classics.
153. Own less than 500 items for a year.
154. Go have a non-alcoholic drink at the Violet Hour.
155. One at least one piece of Chanel clothing.
156. Do The Artist’s Way with at least one other person.
157. Do A Course in Miracles, all the way through for one year.
158. Read The Bible, cover to cover.
159. Read The Koran, cover to cover.
160. Try a colonic.
161. Go to a Packer Game in Lambeau Field.
162. Organize a fun flash mob.
163. Go caroling.
164. Buy a kayak and go kayaking regularly.
165. Make a cab driver documentary.
166. Get involved with Improv Everywhere.
167. Own one piece of really nice jewelry.
168. Learn how to swing dance.
169. Learn how to apply a smoky eye shadow.
170. Finish my bachelor’s degree.
171. Learn Reiki.
172. Learn how to/go scuba diving.
173. Learn how to be proficient in horseback riding.
174. Have high tea at the Peninsula.
175. Stay a weekend at the Drake Hotel.
176. Create Sleepover 2.0.
177. Go to Cedar Point.
178. Ride the Navy Pier Ferris Wheel.
179. Visit the Statue of Liberty.
180. Visit the St. Louis Arch.
181. Go to every baseball stadium in the United States/Canada.
182. See Mt. Rushmore.
183. Visit the National Parks.
184. Travel the length of the 101.
185. Travel Route 66.
186. Learn to knit.
187. Learn to code.
188. Get ordained on the internet. Universal Life 8.25.13
189. Get real ordained.
190. Get a tattoo of some Beatles lyrics.
191. Get a Chicago tattoo.
192. Get a tattoo that has realistic bees and flowers.
193. Get a tattoo of two swallows holding a banner that says “Love and tolerance of others is our code.”
194. Earn a million dollars.
195. Have a year’s worth of savings in the bank.
196. Become completely debt free.
197. Visit all of the Scandinavian countries.
198. Trace my ancestry. Started an account on 12.26.13.
199. Purchase an inversion table.
200. Visit the Newberry Library.
201. Visit the Garfield Conservatory.
202. See a performance in Radio City Music Hall.
203. Visit the Louvre.
204. Visit MOMA.
205. Own a first edition copy of the book Alcoholics Anonymous.
206. Own a pair of Chuck Taylors in every color.
207. Assemble a basic wardrobe list of very high quality items.
208. Get a high quality, expensive mattress.
209. Learn how to sing harmony.
210. Learn how to heel-toe shift.
211. Learn basic graphic design.
212. Walk some portion of the Appalachian Trail.
213. Perform in a play. Was in a production of Sweetie Maude this fall as a chorus member.
213a. Perform in a play in a major role.
214. Properly cut a grass lawn.
215. Put together all my mementos into proper scrapbooks.
216. Get an agent for print/commercial work.
217. Buy a piece of original art that is worth at least $500. (12.2013 — I did commission a piece of original art that was much less than $500, but I still did that.)
218. Own/ride a Vespa-ish scooter (if not a Vespa outright).

I’m going to publish this, but I will definitely be back to add to it, since I’m thinking of more things to add, all day, every day. To be continued …


in limbo

“the perfect job and financial abundance are headed my way.” this is a mantra i am starting to repeat to myself in the effort to believe it. so that i create such a thing around me. so that i can live ‘in-spirit,” as wayne dyer would say. i want to live in the place that is good and surrounded by the creative intelligence i believe created me and is infusing every moment and everything. somewhere, i believe this. i was going to say “at my core,” but sometimes i think my core and my subconscious and my cerebral cortex take turns believing this and believing that i don’t deserve this and just not giving a royal fuck what happens.

i’ve had a run of rotten luck the last couple of days. most recently, i left my phone on a CTA train. while i normally have pretty great luck with these things (e.g., losing wallets and having them returned by honest people who want nothing from me), this time it was found by someone who wanted money and called my friend who called my phone to see if it was on/someone would answer. they called him at 6:30 a.m. (when i was having a dream that my phone was found and that i was at same friend’s house) and asked him for “a reward.” he offered $20, they immediately started haggling.

i have to wonder — was it worth it, creep? you’ve got nothing now. i hope you can fence that blackberry, because now you’ve got no cash in hand, at least not from me. it’s a dilemma from *my* end, though, because the insurance that i’ve been paying on the account, always sort of feeling secure that if something like this DID ever happen, now leaves me short — instead of a $50 deductible, it changed to a $100 for phones like mine. oh. i guess i would have rather paid the $40. but not at the price of a sketchy, shady, weird-ass deal, i guess.

i don’t know. i have another phone that i just had them re-activate, which cuts mr. shady mcshaderson out completely, as i guess he was answering my phone. so now i really have no way to get a hold of him even if i wanted to. but now i have to decide if i want to pay $100 to get another blackberry. it’s infuriating, because i was told at the time i decided to get insurance that it was a $50 deductible. clearly, that’s not the case and i wonder how many months i’ve spent throwing money down the toilet if i’m not going to use the insurance when i need it.

on the other hand, don’t tell me it’s a $500 phone. it’s not. i got it from you for $50 with a $100 rebate when i signed another 2 year contract. it was TRULY a $500 phone, you wouldn’t do that kind of a deal, sprint. you don’t give that much of a flying fuck about me. they’re making these things *somewhere* in the world for about $50 — shit, probably $20 or even less. so don’t try and tell me it’s a $500 phone. go fuck yourself. iphones are selling for $100 now, and they’re way cooler than this thing.

i don’t know. i’m mad at myself. i can’t believe i left it. i know exactly what happened, too — cause i had it IN MY HAND seconds before. i’m just sick about it. i don’t have a job, so it’s not like i have $100 to throw around — not like i ever did. and it’s also embarrassing to realize how attached i am to the phone and the things i use it for everyday. i don’t know. i’m definitely liking being connected in a lot of ways, but i also see how i can be trapped by it, too.

all of this just shows one way how i feel i’m stuck between a rock and a hard place. take about 10 other situations and throw them in somewhere like this and i’m feeling pretty icky lately. i guess that’s just the way things go sometimes. good with bad.

i just wish it didn’t feel so lonely up in here.

for the love of all that is holy

“radio is dead,” people like to say.  nietzsche said god was dead, too, but clearly he was off the mark.  radio isn’t dead by a long shot.  it’s not dead on the traditional airwaves, it’s not dead on HD, it’s not dead by satellite and it’s not dead on the internet. 

it pains me to think that radio is going anywhere because radio has always been such an integral part of who i am and where i’m going — figuratively and literally.  it’s brought me the bands and influences that make me who i am today:  the oldies station all through childhood, the top 40s station as a teenager, the college radio station that expanded my music library and vocabulary beyond my wildest dreams as a young adult, and the mix of chicago radio stations that continue to bring me new music, pop hits and old favorites up until this present moment.  

it’s taken me on countless road trips, been the soundtrack to endless evenings, helped me write numerous letters and pieces of art, and been a constant companion — at work, school, home, play and travel.  i’ve come to know DJs on a personal level; the hours i’ve spent coming to know their idiosyncrasies, their turns of phrase, their favorite artists, have all been well spent.  i’ve waited through 4 minutes of commercials for one favorite song.  i’ve called in for tickets, held on to make a request, and spent the next 4 songs making idle chatter with a bored DJ until the next break.  i’ve loved radio and it’s loved me.

it’s with happy heart that i am becoming involved with a radio station again.  CHIRP — the Chicago Independent Radio Project — is a non-profit organization that is bringing local community radio to Chicago.  we are launching in january, online at, and i’m really happy to be a part of it.  i’m the events director for the station and we have a lot of exciting things coming up: launch party, concerts, fundraisers, reading events, etc.  local music, arts, culture, community.  those are some of the things we want to focus on and highlight at CHIRP.

we have built our studio with our own hands (literally) from the ground up (literally).  and we will need help.  we have partnered with kickstarter, an organization that helps people fundraise. the gist is that people donate and people who have pledged to donate don’t pay until the entire goal is raised.  it’s cool — it’s like the point, or groupon.  it’s based on a tipping point sort of system.  our goal was to raise enough money for our first year of streaming costs.  we have met that goal, but since we decided to be conservative in order to meet our goal, we’d like to expand our campaign to cover our first year of archiving and music licensing fees as well. This would mean we’d need to raise another $1000, for a total of $5800. 

right now, as of 12:05 am, 11/10/09 (9, 10, 11!!)  we have 160 backers at $5,346.  you can help out by pledging something … any amount is appreciated, but if you go to the site  you will see that various levels have various different incentives/gifts attached to them.  i will tell you this — if you are able to pledge $100 — there are limited edition mix CDs by the various DJs, one of whom is myself.  apparently, someone has already pledged for one of them.  so there are two left.  here is the description:

Selection #7 from our extremely limited edition CHIRP DJ mix CD series: Not One More Note of Winter: Chicago winters last far too long, and it’s always nice to have a piece of our best season to take with you everywhere. Lively pop songs bring summer’s radiant tones and bright lyrics to warm up the chilliest of fall nights and coldest of winter days, curated by CHIRP Events Director Jocelyn Geboy.

so that’s that.  get on it … $1 or $5 is just fine.  but so is $50 or $500!   YAY radio!!  YAY CHIRP!

the pressure mounts … literally

so. i got laid off last week. a confluence of circumstances made it so the place i work/ed for just can’t afford me anymore. sigh. oh well. it’s funny that it happened right at the end of my taking billy pacholski’s “attracting abundance” class. i actually see it as a sign of good things to come. i see it as a way of moving from office work to creative work — toward writing and acting and film and freelancing and social media and web and all of that. i do.

the reality of the situation is that unemployment isn’t going to pay me very much a week at all. but, i do have several freelance things going and i do believe in abundance. and i believe that i have been and always will be taken care of. and there are little signs of that happening everywhere, constantly. so, i know i’m okay.

however, i went to have an annual exam for the first time in about four years. as part of the regular course of things, they take your blood pressure. i’ve always been a 120/70 girl, which i used to think was pretty normal, but now i understand isn’t all that great, but decently average. well, i had been pretty jacked up, talking, not really nervous, but i’m sure working my way up to a good case of white-coat hypertension anyway. she takes my blood pressure and it’s 120/90. for those of you not in the know, it’s actually the bottom number that’s the most worrisome.

well, she says we’ll do the exam and then take it afterward. i had also been drinking diet coke, blah blah. we do the exam, and i’m feeling kind of sleepy and mellow. she takes my blood pressure again and … it’s 130/100. oops. that’s not good. also not great, since i was contemplating going back on the pill to control a little bit of ovulatory acne i seem to have picked up in my later years here … and let’s face it, i’ve always had pretty flawless skin, so i’m fucking vain when it comes to that, i guess.

but, not looking good to go back on old-school hard core pills (i like my ortho 7-7-7) when my BP is all effed up. she asks me about exercise and diet. both of which are shitty and nonexistent. i guess the bottom i’ve been trying to hit with those may have arrived? i tell my boss she’s supposed to check my blood pressure so i can call them and let them know what it was. she does. same shit. 130/100. fuck. what the hell is up with that shit?

she asks me if i told them that i had just gotten laid off. it never occurs to me that it would even factor in, quite frankly. it’s one of those things that i really do think will take care of itself, but does have this funny way of being shoved down way to the back of my brain, where the lizard/fight-or-flight/survival brain lives. the one that’s constantly assessing any given situation, the one working to breathe, the one searching for unconscious clues, the one making sure i survive. maybe that part of me is revved up, going “this is live or die, kid. make sure you get this shit figured out. we need a place to live. it’s getting cold.”

i’ve told you about that, before, right? if the law of attraction is about drawing to you what you put out there, or the energies you focus on, then this little mindfuck is probably why i’m not rich. i often find myself looking over various spaces, inside and outside, and figuring out how i would manage to stay there if i were homeless. what i would do, what i would carry around. how i could scam or manage to hide out somewhere, especially if i could manage to look presentable. what trains i’d ride, what places i could get away with sleeping in, what nooks or crannies i could figure out and not get caught. i don’t know what my obsession with this is; i hope i never have to be homeless, unless i’m pulling some sort of walter jacobson or something. even then, it would be a wretched life lesson/object lesson.

needless to say, it’s a strange thing to always have it in the back of your mind that you might be homeless and should be contemplating ways to mitigate this situation. i don’t think most people even give such things a second thought. it’s not a testament to manageability, that’s for sure. and i’m sure it’s not great for the blood pressure. so, it’s look for work, try to eat better, and try to exercise. boy, that sounds like an old song. but at least losing my job had nothing to do with me. that’s nice.

not for the faint of heart

too bad that i have to come here with this. i’m a page out of the fucking newspaper. i was coming home last night and got off the train by work so i could pick up my bike. i was on the phone with a sponsee and was trying to get my bike unlocked from the meter it was hooked up to. suddenly, the bike slid out from underneath me, and the spikes where the chain is attached — the gears, i guess — drove right into my shin. blood started trickling down my leg in a beautiful red rivulet. it hurt, but i figured i’d just deal with it when i got home. i briefly considered going into work and cleaning it up, but hell, i looked like a bad ass.

i got home and locked up my bike — at whom i was sort of pissed — and went inside. i went into the bathroom and started scrubbing blood and dirt from my leg. i started to examine my wounds a little more clearly and saw that the middle hole was, in fact, a hole. it was a puncture wound. oh. fuck. that’s no good. i started poking around a bit and seeing that it wasn’t stitches deep, but it was a good jab. the other two holes were pretty superficial, but this one was sort of a good hole.

i got the peroxide out and started cleaning, replete with an abundance of “son-of-a-bitches” and “motherfuckers.” there was a bit of skin around the edge that i really wanted to be rid of. it was sort of black and i figured it was dirty from the oil of the gears. that couldn’t be good. i got out some alcohol swabs that had benzocaine in them and got a little more intense. i grabbed a tweezers and disinfected *that* with said alcohol swabs. i tried to get a little more particular and grabby. but that skin was actually attached to me. it wasn’t really budging too well. for fuck’s sake. this was kind of a little more intense than i realized.

i kept cleaning and then got some neosporin and filled the holes. i went into the living room and got some kleenex and some scotch tape and made a makeshift bandage for myself. i had bandaids, but it didn’t seem like the right thing for that sort of thing. i did this or that and was getting ready for bed and i looked down and the wound had oozed through the several layers of kleenex already. fuck. i took off the kleenex and squeezed a little bit and not only did the wound bleed, but some neosporin came out, too. holy shit. this was pretty gross.

i re-wrapped the thing up with kleenex again and laid on the couch with my leg elevated and fell asleep. before i did, i had an epiphany. the last time i had a puncture wound (the night of the bite of marvicula), i needed a tetanus shot. every 8-10 years, and definitely if you have cause such as this. last time, i was 24. that definitely falls outside the 8-10 year mark. i couldn’t afford an ER trip. i did some texting and found out i could wait 24 hours, but even then, i did some research and wasn’t sure i could afford the $62 visit and $42 shot at a CVS clinic.

there were some suggestions from people on facebook about free/low-cost health clinics. the city department of health clinics were closed today for some immunization thing. irony, you fucking bitch. the one place was not answering their phone. the one place had a $55-$150 office visit fee plus the $50 immunization fee. how was this affordable health care? what about “i can’t afford this,” don’t you understand?! i can’t tell you how many times i cried thinking about how the last thing i wanted was a tetanus shot but how i was trying to be an adult and be responsible and how it was sort of like rabies — chances are i wasn’t going to end up with tetanus. but it’s the kind of thing you can’t fuck around with. once you DO end up with tetanus or rabies, you’re fucked.

and i just kept thinking about all these town halls and all the news and all this crap lately and wondering — do these people really begrudge me a tetanus shot? the ability to know that i won’t have to worry about being really sick if something were to go really wrong and i get some crazy ass rusty death disease? do they really want me to sit up and worry and cry because i don’t have the money? do they really want to punish me, even if the reason is partly that i don’t get paid enough and partly because i’m not good with my money? is that enough to see me stress and worry and wonder if i’ll be okay?

it hurts my feelings and makes me sad and just wears me out. i found a walk-in where you can just get an immunization for $40, but i’m not even going to MENTION the wound thing. i can’t afford to.

let’s go dutch treat

i’ve been really sick this week. i’m not the type to run right to a doctor in the first place, and i’m also not the type to want to go storming around, demanding antibiotics. hell, i’m the gal that’s all anti flu shot. so, when i got sick, i figure i’d just have to ride it out a few days or a week and then be done with it.

however, i also know my body pretty well, insofar as certain aspects are concerned, and i know that after 5 days go by and blowing my nose still yields deposits that have … color to them, that i am no longer suffering from a common cold, but from some sort of infection. maybe it *is* a viral infection, but it’s going to need an antibiotic. that is, i think it’s probably NOT viral and it’s bacterial. it’s probably not strep, but it’s bacterial.

how do i know this? well, i’ve been kicking around in this body for 35 years. i know how i handle a cold. i know i get clear snot after a day or so. i know i don’t continue to cough. i know i’m not beat down with fatigue for a week. i know that’s just not things work. i also know if i have all of these symptoms going on a week, that my relatively healthy immune system has been pushed to its limit. it’s doing everything it can and it needs some help. the army needs a ‘surge.’

but for this and at *least* the next paycheck, i am squeezed right to the penny. i am completely fucked. i have no extra money. i called walgreens and found out what the cheapest prescription was that i could get — a good, old-fashioned round of amoxicillin. it would be about $15. i guess i could swing that. i also could probably swing a professional friend who could write the prescription. it wasn’t shady, it’s legit and everything. but it certainly doesn’t beat going to a doctor with a real appointment and all of that.

i can’t do that, though. i can’t go to the doctor. i have several teeth that are also FUCKED and i can’t go to the dentist, either. can’t afford it. not even close. i’m terrified that they probably need root canals at this point, which is even MORE money than the fillings or replacement fillings they once needed. i realized the other day that i’m not sure the last time i had an annual was. i used to be faithful, diligent about it. every year, like clockwork. i haven’t been on the pill in awhile, so maybe that has had something to do with it. and if you’re healthy, you can actually go every 1-3 years. but i think it might be going on something like 4. there’s even a clinic here that is SUPER sliding scale. but you know what? i’ve used their services like that so many times, that i just want to be able to go back when i can actually afford to pay them something close to their proper amount.

and so it goes and so it goes and so i go without medical attention.

i don’t understand all the people who cry out in fear and terror that everyone will have to wait months for procedures if we get national healthcare. i wait anyway. i wait forever. because i don’t have the money to pay for a doctor. period. there’s no waiting list. i just don’t get treated. i just don’t go to the doctor. i just don’t get seen. people might be coming from canada to pay cash for some sort of medical attention, but they must be better off than me to begin with, because i don’t have the cash to pay the doctors they’re seeing, either.

the thing is, i’ll fucking pay for it. just like i used to pay for it when i was at companies that offered health insurance in a big enough group where my pre-existing conditions didn’t matter and the price wasn’t so situated that it was too stifling to even think about trying to pay the premium each month. instead, i checked ‘yes’ to PPO and dental and they cut that shit off the top of my paycheck each month, and for all intents and purposes, i was no more the wiser, no worse for the wear. it was no different than any other tax for this or that or social security.

so do the same fucking thing if i pick the government plan. take the money from joe at his company when he pays for his company’s AT&T BCBS plan. and take the money from my check when i pick the white house plan. easy enough. i’m even chipping in. that’s fair, isn’t it? i’m not even asking for it completely free. i’m just asking for the CHANCE to try and have what others have. i’m just asking for the opportunity to try and live a life free of the fear that i will perish from some sort of preventable, treatable disease. that i will have to be in pain or distress from some symptoms that could have been alleviated if i could have been working with a professional. if i could only believe that my life was as important as someone who worked in the office next to mine.

that’s all i’m asking. i’ll even go dutch treat.

being tan and all that

i come from a house of abbreviations and nicknames and wordplay. so it shouldn’t come as a surprise to my friends when i start calling them names or making up phrases or coming up with some new sort of “thing” i say.

to wit: i met this man who is a friend of my friend, k back in january. i remember names and faces very well. freakishly well, to some extent. so, i know what the man’s name is and i did after i met him. however, he is and was very tan. especially for a guy who lives in wisconsin in january. so, i started calling him ‘the tan man.’ now, it also helps that ‘tan man’ is wonderfully assonant and rhyming. who doesn’t love to say that!!??

everyone does, that’s who. now. about the tan man. i met this guy in january. he’s an older man … but frankly, i can’t tell if he’s my dad’s age (62) or if he’s older than that. he looks good. he’s in good shape and is quick witted and most of all … has a sense of serenity about him that i so crave. i’m sure the guy gets pissed off. i know he has a crazyish head — he and i are alike in that we’re ‘bodily and mentally different from our fellows.’ so, i get his kind and he gets mine.

one of the reasons i became all enamored of this guy right off the bat was his demeanor — easygoing, but serious. very lighthearted, but kind. there’s a gravitas to the guy — you feel like he’s really paying attention to what you have to say. who knows. maybe he’s thinking about what he’s going to have for dinner or what the drive home is going to be like. i don’t know. but, i really enjoy his energy and his company.

i guess i have one more story to tell you about him and it will weave in with one story that happened to me tonight. they’re stories about the same old story that has been being told to me and for me and about me forever. it’s my story about money. this week, on facebook and twitter, i had a status that said “i’m royally fucked.” it was because i had gotten myself in a real fucking spot with money. in a place i haven’t been in a LONG time. a ‘how the fuck am i going to pay the rent’ spot. i believe i have the same disease with money that i do with booze. it’s something that i’m powerless over, and if left alone, will get progressively worse. this has been proven to me out of my own experience. and unfortunately for me, it could lead me back to a drink, because that’s also who i am. and for me, to drink is to die.

so, i believe through a variety of means (whether it’s law of attraction things like ‘the secret’ or christian stuff or straight up AA or what-have-you) that the reason this haunts me is because of the crap i have in my head about money. that i’ve got resentments about it, towards it, against it. about people who have it, the circumstances surrounding it, etc. and i learn in AA that ANYTHING i have a resentment about is fatal for me. because ultimately, it blocks me from my higher power. and secondarily, that blocks me from people. who are also manifestations of my higher power. and if i’m blocked from god, i’ll eventually drink. spirituality is my medicine for the thing that ails me … the fact that i’m inherently ‘restless, irritable and discontented.’ that i’m anxious, scared, fearful, depressed, whatever.

anyway … back to money. i seem to have this weird thing that i don’t seem to ever have money, but i have champagne tastes. i seem to attract people who have a lot of money to me, but who are totally chill and down-to-earth and don’t act like they have a lot of money. i was talking to one of these people today (i really don’t even think i had a clue) and he was talking about how he will go home for the summer and be an escort for debutante balls down in texas.

i was flabbergasted. first of all, i didn’t think they did that anymore. i thought that was something that was done in the 1950s. at this point, i wasn’t even thinking money. i was thinking feminism. like, how gross to parade around your daughters in an effort to marry them off. but, my attitude toward this led my friend to feel weird and embarrassed and it was apparent that he was worried about how it looked, money wise. that it was about society things and he didn’t want to look that way. but i hadn’t considered that aspect of it. i was more upset about the cattle show thing. but, then as we talked some more, i got that part of it. oh wait, i thought. .. they DO still do this. because this is a high society thing and people want to match up their people according to money and status and make sure everything gets where it ‘should’ go. then, i started to get more mad. and as i got more mad, he got more bummed out.

and that wasn’t my intention at all. at all. but of course, when i am in self-centered fear, i don’t really have time to consider someone else’s feelings. i’m all wrapped up in mine. but i realized that i was feeling totally inadequate. i was never going to be a part of that … even though i didn’t want to be. i was never going to be considered cool enough or rich enough or fancy enough or whatever enough to be a part of that sort of american royalty. and there is a part of my soul that is so deeply offended and rejected by that. i don’t know what happens, but i just get so pissed because inside i feel so low and sad and so dirty. like i would never ever be good enough for them. i’m some sort of lowly maid in this life. like it’s some weird fairytale or something.

and i feel like i’ll never have any abundance when i live in that sort of literal and figurative scarcity. when i’m always seeing myself as too poor or too empty or too lacking. it’s a struggle to be sure. it’s something i’m working on. especially, since that attitude not only hurts me, it’s hurting others by my immature and sad reaction to life that i carry with me as a result.

in comparison, we drove to dinner the other night in the tan man’s new BMW convertible. this thing was HOT. i loved it. and it was just one of many possible dream cars i could have. the thing is, he owned a nice car. but his car didn’t own him. instantly, he offered the keys to my friend and told her she should drive. boom. i thought — wow. how great. he’s just not tied to it. he’s not worried or paranoid or anything. he’s willing to let go and let someone else enjoy it. it was a powerful lesson. the man obviously has some material things. but they don’t consume him. he enjoys them, they don’t take over his life.

i hope i’m that way someday. i hope i have nice things and go nice places. but i also hope that like clive owen likes to chant in ‘the croupier,’ i can “hold on tightly and let go lightly.”

man, what a shitty blog post. sorry, friends. i’m getting back into the swing of things. forgive me.