i’m supposed to be working on my book today. for those of you who are frequent flyers here at accidental happiness airlines, you may recall that i am writing a book of memoirs. no? oh, well i did tell you, so you must have missed that blog. this was the weekend i intended to finish up the final editing; but life’s little lessons get in the way, and i see i must face some of my demons before i share them with the world.
Demon #1: Shyorcifel (also known as fear of intimacy)
i’ve been getting in touch with friends from my past, and i see that the vast majority of folk my age have spouses and children and homes. i began to scold myself today for not having a lover, and what is wrong with me, and all of that kind of thing. but i realized pretty quickly that the reason i am still single is that i never let anyone get close, and i never let men (or most of my friends for that matter) see the real me. it’s scary to think that you would hope in someone to love you on your worst day, with a big juicy zit on your nose, and no makeup on, walking around in yoga pants with holes in the ass, and then your supposed to trust that this person loves you when they’ve been around you at these times? when you’ve done something sinister or selfish? when you’ve told about your horrid past and how messed up you are? see, it’s easier to just never get to that level.
and that’s why i’m still single. so i have to wrestle with the intimacy demon and work out the kinks in my emotional vulnerability quotas.
Demon #2: Keeperoscipase (also known as Obssessive Hoarding)
ok, i’m not actually a hoarder. i lovingly refer to it as ‘being a Picker’. i collect. and while i love my books and papers and ephemera, my toys and clothes and crafts, i’m not going to be auditioning for “Hoarders” anytime soon. but – having watched my first episode today – i can see that i am made of the same fabric as these others. we are people who are afraid.
afraid of losing someone. afraid of letting go of the past. afraid of living in the now, and the uncertainties of life. afraid of forgetting something, or not having what we need, or throwing away something important or of value.
afraid of letting people in. afraid of looking deep inside. afraid of admitting we’ve been hurt, killed, beaten, worn down, abused, neglected and abandoned. afraid of being seen for what we are: weak, vulnerable, and hurting.
but hey! look at that. the entire human race is in this category. and while i might wash my hands too many times after tucking away another thirty copies of fiction titles i’ll never read, you might be socking down your thirteenth bottle of Labatts, or losing the use of your right arm due to a slip up with a bookie.
we’re all of us broken, wounded, beautiful creatures. and the fascinating part of life is watching each of us uncover the treasure beneath all the outer layerings of crap.
The World Cup started this week, which is always enjoyable. My sister (I’ll call her Bodie on here, one of my nicknames for her) and I always love to watch sports. We love to get involved in the game, and cheer our voices gone, and jump up and down if we get so excited, or curse like sailors when our people suck and mess up the whole thing. We aren’t terribly picky about what we watch, though we certainly have favorites.
Over the years we’ve watched more football than anything, my favorite sport and one of her favorites. But we enjoy watching all sorts of games: the XGames is a definite favorite, beach volleyball, soccer, tennis. I almost had a meltdown when I discovered rugby – my other favorite sport – because not only are the outfits adorable, the men are supersized, with big meaty thighs, burly physiques, and round juicy bottoms. These men are warriors out on the field, sporting bloody facial expressions within minutes of play. Rugby is a sport a horny girl can get into. But I also enjoy curling. And watching billiards. And water polo, the Olympics, motocross, and martial arts competitions.
I don’t know for sure what it is about sports that we both love so much. When we got Dish Network, the guy installing it told us we had too much testosterone. He was telling us about all the cool channels we would be getting, now that we had the Dish, and I said, “Yeah, but we get Football Network, right?” The channel was brand new at the time, and he didn’t seem to understand why we weren’t as excited about the Home Shopping Network.
I think my sister and I have always been this way. At eight or nine, I watched football at home by myself, or on Sundays with my uncle, who taught me the game. I knew early on to hate the Cowboys for the sheer principle of it (my uncle’s conviction, and we DID live in Los Angeles), to honor the Steelers and cheer the Rams, and on my own I selected the Chicago Bears and the Saints as early favorites, whom I am still loyal to today. Although I’ve also added the Seahawks, Ravens and several other teams to my roster of favorites. I also watched roller derby as a kid, and had a yellow legal pad full of the names of my team’s players, and their arch rivals. I sat in front of the television set every Saturday morning and berated the opposing team, calling them doodie pants and weenie heads.
And while I started off with a healthy interest in sports, my appreciation may have increased when I finally started dating some athletes. There is something about athletes….
I’ve dated artists and musicians, architects and money moguls, mechanics, fire fighters, gamblers and sommeliers. And I don’t think I’ve dated any professional athletes, at least they weren’t at the time I dated them, but I have gone out with basketball players, football players, tennis players, baseball players, swimmers, and I had a great chance to date a foreign exchange water polo player, from France, I think, and I completely blew that one. Oh well. That wouldn’t have lasted long anyway, because I was virginal at the time, or thought I was, so was maintaining a strict “No Go” philosophy on all things sex.
Still, with all my appreciation of the sport and the sporter, I’m always surprised that when I do find someone to date, I am often the one that is more interested in competition. Maybe I didn’t realize early enough that I was into athletes, and spent all that time dithering away on the architects and poets and dramatic thinky types. Maybe when I have dated athletically minded men, I haven’t been in a place where I’m paying much attention to anything, and didn’t notice them cheering on a good tennis match, or placing bets on a football game. (oh, wait a minute, that sounds familiar)
I do remember lots of nights spent with my fabulous sister, on the couch screaming, cheering, and getting drunk. I do remember fun nights out at the pub with my sis, wearing colored wigs, gaudy ‘mardi gras’ necklaces, face tattoos and getting drunk. Attending games with my sis, where we stand in the bleachers, asses in pain because those seats are so uncomfortable, cursing at the coach, or the team, or the lousy season ahead, and getting drunk.
So World Cup is another bonding time with my sis. One of these days I hope to find a man I can love for my very own, who also happens to like sports. I’m hoping he will go to some roller derby games with me, and stop at a park and watch random games of softball and soccer, even if we don’t know anyone on the teams. This is something I enjoyed doing when I lived on my own, and had nothing better to do on a random day. I’m hoping I’ll find a guy who will play volleyball with me, or maybe try to get me to take up golf, which I can’t really imagine liking, unless my job is just driving the cute cart and getting us more beers. And I will probably always be watching sports with my sis…but I’m also hoping I’ll find a guy that can finally see the light. A unique man that will finally appreciate all the things that I love, like pizza and beer and sex and sports. A man that won’t constantly nag me to clean the house or take out the cat litter. A man that can sit down and play video games with me once in a while, or sit on the porch and smoke my hookah with me. A man who will finally see the truth that no other man has ever grasped; I am the perfect woman.
Her job started up a project that she knew would be tedious, horrible, infuriating, stressful and time consuming. Not to mention mentally taxing and exhausting. So we popped some beers, and have been doing so since.
But Mercury went retrograde recently too. And although it just aligned itself (yesterday), for the last several weeks life has been a challenge. People arguing at work, miscommunication among the people who work and the people they are working for (or against). Unhappy, confused patrons who would rather yell than understand policy. It’s been a tense month.
Add to all of that the recent suicide threat that I went through last weekend, and am still going through now. Because what might have been a flippant comment from someone who needed a shoulder to cry on has now blown up into discussions with supervisors, heads of departments, and my own friends who I have to lean on when these kinds of things stress me out.
Because I don’t mean to get stressed out about things. God I’m creating my own little mantra and catch phrase just so I can remind myself NOT to worry so much. But I’m tender, you see. And despite my tough cookie outer shell, that is crunchy sweet with no calories, I’m really a big moosh pot inside. And I get all worked up when other people are involved in drama, trauma and despair and try to bring me in to the mess.
So today’s little surprise was truly welcome. Into my cubicle comes a young lady carrying a sort of suitcase and she says, “Would you like a sample from Jimmy John’s?” She’s offering me a teeny free sandwich. Surely she is unaware of the lousy week and month I’ve been having. Surely she is unaware of my tense frame of mind and my wishy washy mental state lately. Certainly she is unaware that food makes everything more fun for me, and here she is offering me a sandwich for no damn reason.
“Awesome!” I say, and eagerly consume the little buddy.
And while a teeny tiny sandwich may not right the downward spinning world, and won’t save the life of the person who might go ahead and kill herself, and won’t keep me from truly becoming an alcoholic by next month…it did brighten my day significantly. So thanks Jimmy John’s (I’ll be by soon!) for making a gloomy day brighter. You were definitely my Accidental Happiness of the week!