Sunday, March 30, 2014

Fifteen Seconds

He had off on Tuesday, and we had a lot of stuff to do.  

Upon leaving, we were taking the trash down with us.  There is a dumpster for our building located several paces north of our back door.  There is a dumpster for our neighbouring building that is located directly across from our back door.

We had a lot of stuff to do.  

So, as I watched him walk toward the proper dumpster, I thought to myself, "I should tell him to put the trash in the dumpster that is right there.  We have a lot of stuff to do."  

But, it took me too long to think that, and by the time the words would have gotten out of my mouth, he was already half-way to the proper dumpster.  

So, I didn't say anything.  

It would have only saved us about eight seconds, anyway.

We walked to our Enterprise Car Share vehicle, whereupon he placed his card over the reader so that the doors would unlock.  Instead, the doors locked themselves.   

So, he ran his card over the reader again.  This time, the doors opened.

"That's weird," he said.  "The last person to use this car left it open."

I said, "Ugh.  People are such idiots."

We had a little chuckle.  After all, it wasn't that big of a deal.  We had a lot to do, but the un-locker(s) only caused us to lose about seven seconds.  

We exited the lot, and made a right onto the street behind our building, heading west.  It was nothing.  It was something we do every week:  We get a car.  We turn right out onto the street.  We go to Trader Joe's.  We get our groceries, like everyone else.  

As we approached the CTA station, we saw the usual police car that sits outside the station.  It was 12:05pm, and everything was how everything usually was.  The street behind our building is nothing special.  There's a Family Dollar, a Chase bank, a liquor store, a small market, and a coffee shop that I do not frequent because it is owned by Christians who "donate" the workers tips.  Although I suppose that the workers do not mind such, lest they wouldn't work there, the other coffee shop is named after a growling bunny rabbit.  The other coffee shop is more my style.  The other coffee shop isn't on this street.

We were stopped at a stop sign.  We had just passed the cop who sits by the El.

About a block in front of us, maybe one other stop sign ahead, I see three figures.  One is pointing a gun at one of the other two figures.  I hear the gun fire.  I see the figure who had just been shot fall down.  I immediately hear the shooter fire again at the other figure.  

"That's someone shooting."

"Is it?" he states.  It's happening before our eyes, but you don't want it to be real.  I understand his statement.  But, my own mind does not take the time to question the reality.  "Yeah, it is," he answers himself.

I see the second figure limp heavily across the street.  The man with the gun turns.  The limping man is heading our way. 

"Turn now."  I say.  "Here.  Now.  Do it."

He turns.

He's not going very fast.

"Go faster.  We can't fuck around with this.  He was headed our way."

He starts to go somewhat faster.  

He is a horrible driver.  

Once I feel we are a safe distance away--this safe distance is somehow only two blocks--we contemplate dialing 9-1-1.  

A cop with sirens blaring goes by.

A fire truck with sirens blaring goes by.  

We do not call 9-1-1.

We take an alternate route, instead of heading west on the street behind our building.

We do not pass the spot at which two people now lay bleeding before they are carted off to the hospital.

We do not pass the spot which we would have been directly in the midst of had we left fifteen seconds earlier.    

We go to Trader Joe's.

We buy kale, marinated artichokes, red pepper flakes, and sample French flatbread with fancy mushrooms.

I am thankful for his use of the proper garbage can.  I am thankful that he does not have a mind like mine.  His mind would never think to use the wrong garbage dumpster.  

I am thankful for silly people who sometimes forget to lock up after they use the car share.  

I am thankful that even though my family is super fucked up, and that I have a billion and five problems, I am thankful that I was born into a situation in which guns and violence are not a regular part of life.

To non-Chicagoans, Chicago gets a really bad rap.  I've lived here my whole life, and I've never experienced anything like this.  I just need to move to a better neighbourhood, so that I don't experience stuff like this any longer.  

In the end, maybe this is the kick in the butt that I need to get a job.

That would be good.

Neither man died.  One was shot in the leg, and one was shot in the butt.  They were a father and a son, who along with the mother, were visiting their 79-year-old grandmother on her birthday.  Despite the grandmother indicating in the initial reports that her son and grandson had no known enemies, both son and dad were gang members.  The reports, so far, are unclear as to whether they are a member of the same gang.  The shooter attempted to get a third shot off at the mother, but the gun misfired.  There was a driver waiting to take the shooter away.  They found the getaway vehicle a few blocks away with stolen Wisconsin plates.      

Now, there will be more policemen on patrol on the street behind our building hoping to prevent any retaliation shootings.

And, there is nowhere else for me to go for cat litter besides that Family Dollar unless I want to carry cat litter across town.  

I dunno, maybe I should want to carry cat litter across town.

Bottoms up!  

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

If I could start again...I would keep myself...

I hurt myself today
To see if I still feel
I focus on the pain
The only thing that's real
The needle tears a hole
The old familiar sting
Try to kill it all away
But I remember everything

What have I become?
My sweetest friend
Everyone I know
Goes away in the end
You could have it all
My empire of dirt
I will let you down
I will make you hurt

I wear this crown of shit
Upon my liar's chair
Full of broken thoughts
I cannot repair
Beneath the stains of time
The feelings disappear
You are someone else
I am still right here

What have I become?
My sweetest friend
Everyone I know
Goes away in the end

You could have it all
My empire of dirt
I will let you down
I will make you hurt
If I could start again
A million miles away
I would keep myself
I would find a way

~ Reznor

Bottoms up!

Thursday, March 13, 2014

There are some things he is very good at. 

The handle on the hot water in the kitchen has been loose.  I told him today that I was having trouble getting the hot water to come on and turn off.  It was fixed in about five minutes.  No fuss. 

I made barbecued pork belly over spinach mac 'n' cheese with Parmesan served with a pea shoot salad in an apple cider vinaigrette.  It was very good.  He had seconds.  

Tomorrow we have to take our other cat, Greta, to the vet.  Again.  Her previous blood test was inconclusive.  Because of that, she cannot eat for twelve hours before this one.  That should be fun, because Greta likes to eat.  As do we all.  Oh, here she comes to say hello.  She must sense that I am writing about her.  Hi, Greta!

She is all, "Agains!?? I haves to go to the doctors agains?  Are you seriously?" 

She has some grammar issues.  But, that's okay.

She is soooo gooood in the car.  Lumpkin is a very curious and scared kitty-bitty in the car.  They are very different kitty-bitties.

The boy has off tomorrow, and he is taking a vacation day on Saturday.  This is a very rare two days off in a row.

We have no plans save for taking Greta to the veterinarian.

Last Friday when we had no plans, he wanted to sit on the couch and watch something on TV.  I just couldn't do it.  I couldn't.  We do that EVERY DAY because it is the only thing we have time to do before he leaves for work.  So, when he finally had a day off, and that was what he wanted to do, I went to bed.  I played with Lumpkin under the covers and listened to her purr.

I just couldn't.

I am not an old lady who wants to sit and watch her programme.  I want to go out, drink, have fun, talk to strangers about stupid shit ever so briefly and not enough to let said strangers get annoying, go do things in our great big awesome city....and then talk about these things...and have no mention of the fucking weather.  We do not have kids.  Date nights should be a fucking given.

I want to listen to good music, jam out to said music, and not have to be like, "This is Pink Floyd." or "This is Journey." or "This is Daft Punk." or "This is Blondie." and him just go "Oh, okay."  I don't know how to learn to be okay with this.  Music is so much a part of my life.

Sometimes, a lot of times, even though he is right next to me, I feel really, really alone.

I feel so alone with all that I am here.

I feel like I don't belong here.

I feel like I don't fit in here.

I feel like I have to work so hard to fit into the cracks of his life, but what I have to fill those cracks doesn't really do the job.

Again, I'm not sure how I got here.

None of this is me complaining.  Things could be so much worse.  I know that.  I appreciate all that I have around me.

It's just that the essence of who and what I am fades away more and more each day, and I'm so scared that I'm turning into this shell of a person who does the following:

1) wake up
2) (be as quiet as possible until 1:45pm when he wakes up)

quiet activities include:
3) checking email
4) finding recipes
5) Facebook
6) making sure there is enough room on the DVR by erasing things I haven't watched
7) recording new things onto the DVR that will eventually find the fate of #6
8) checking to see if anything has been deleted from my Netflix list by seeing if I still have 500 things there
9) filling my Netflix list back up to 500
10) making a cup of tea
11) making a cup of coffee
12) pee-ing
13) eating a light breakfast seeing as I now eat dinner at 3:30pm

14) he wakes up and runs his bath
15) I can now make noise.
16) I get ready in the bathroom while his bath is running.
17) I can now access my things/clothes in the bedroom without waking him up
18) I pick out my clothes for the day and get dressed.
19) I change Lumpkin's water and get her fresh food and treats.  Greta's too.
20) I change Lumpkin's litter box, if needed.
21) I begin food prep for "dinner."
22) We administer Greta's subcutaneous fluids and give her a shot while we watch an episode of Yo Gabba Gabba!
23) I make dinner.
24) We watch an episode of something.  Lately it is either Helix, Almost Human, Dexter, or Cosmos.  Sometimes, we start a movie.
25) I gather up the trash and wash the dishes.
26) I make him a cup of tea or cocoa to take with him to work.
27) I make sure that he has his phone, his wallet, his keys, and his mace (he's travelling in Chicago very late at night) because he tends to forget one of these things at least once a week, even when I double-check.
29) I give him the trash and recycling.
30) We say good-bye, etc.
31) I restock the trash bags.
32) I sit on the couch and cry for awhile.
33) I try to stop crying by watching TV.
34) I take a bath or shower, shave, wash my hair, condition my hair, scrub my face, etc.
35) If I take a bath, I cry a lot.
36) I take Lumpkin into the bedroom and curl up and watch a movie or Svengoolie.
37) I start to get tired eventually, but I can't fall asleep, so I go on my phone.
38) Maybe play some Words with Friends.
39) Still can't fall asleep.
40) I sometimes take a Valerian root.
41) I finally fall asleep about 1:30am.
42) He comes home about 4.  I wake up.  I lay there.
43) He is up eating, and walking around, and watching movies.
44) He comes to bed about six.  If I've fallen asleep, I wake up again.
45) I try to go back to sleep.  If I took a Valerian root, I am usually able to do so.  If I did not take one, I cannot do so.  He gets up a bunch between six and seven.  He is either coughing, or hitting the john.  I wake up a lot, not to get out of bed, but because I cannot sleep.
46) I get up.

If I get a job waiting tables, I will never see him.  But since the above is currently the pathetic state of my life, I'm not sure that this is a bad thing.

What is a bad thing, is that I will meet new people.  I will meet people who want to go out after work, and drink.  And, most likely, they will know who Pink Floyd is, and not because I told them who Pink Floyd is.  These people will have a schedule like my own.  These people will be able to do things when I am able to do things.  And, some of these people will be male.  

What is a bad thing, is that then he will be the one to never sleep.  I will be getting ready and in the bedroom and making noise in the bathroom when he is trying to sleep.  

What is a good thing, is that I won't be living this pathetic fucking life anymore.  

I won't wait tables forever.  I want to do it again for about a year.  I'll hate it, but I need money.  I need money for a lot of things.  Then, I'm going back to school again.  

I want to go back to school sooner.  It depends on how much money I can make and how many shifts per week I can make that money in.  So, it depends on which restaurant I land in.

Until I get a job, until I get back into classes, I have taken to joining various social groups online.  I have an exercise one that is right by my house near the lake that is all ladies.  I'm excited.  It starts in April.  I'm going to start running.

Ha!  And, the Saturday runs are at 8am.  And, I don't give a fuck if he wakes up ten times while I'm getting ready.  I'm sick of living my life to fit into his weirdass fucking schedule.  

I can't do it anymore.  And whatever becomes of that, make it so.

Bottoms up!   

Monday, March 10, 2014

I am a blob.

So, I ended up going to the free thing the city was doing with my friend on Tuesday.  We also went and saw some art, and then proceeded to hang at a couple of our old haunts.  I had paczki, ate some barbecue, got drunkie, and it was a pretty great day despite my spending way too much money.

I made the cookies he was intending to make.  They are red velvet with white chocolate chips.  They're good.  I think I cooked them a wee tad too long, but they are good.  I also realized that we are in desperate need of both a rubber and a metal spatula if we are to be baking cookies.  We also need cooling racks, no-stick spray that is not olive oil, and more than one cookie sheet.  All that would be good.  And, maybe a mixer that does not break in the middle of mixing.  That would be good, too.  But, I would have not known any of these things had I not undertaken the task of baking cookies.

Other than that, things are entirely the same.  In fact, he's still sick.  He's on his third cold, he says.  He's better, though.  And, tomorrow's going to be in the 50s.  Ugh.  Now, I'm talking about the weather.  

We haven't done anything besides grocery shop since we went to see the Star Wars burlesque for V-day.  The burlesque show that was awesome, yet we never even discussed.  Not once.  Well, except when I told him the following day about Chewbacca noticing my shirt.  

So, I haven't been blogging because there is nothing new to blog about.  I thought blogging about the monotony of it all would help me to fix my life, but I think it's only made me sadder.  Because I'm not any closer to doing that.  

I have barely been sleeping.  Sleeping is so hard.  And, then I have no energy to deal with all of these things I so desperately need to deal with in some way, shape, or form.  

I just don't know how I got here.  

Bottoms up!

Friday, February 28, 2014

More Boringness as I Ponder My Upcoming Week

He tries.  He really does.  He bought me this little balloon bunny, and he's still planning on making his cookies.  He is off on Sunday, so we'll finally be able to hang.  I'm not sure what we'll do other than watch the Oscars.  I'd like to do something Mardi Gras-ish.  Or, maybe get some paczki.  Drink a hurricane.  Eat some bread pudding, or gumbo, or crawfish.  I found this Oscar red carpet bingo card that could be fun.  Maybe my hopes are just too high, and then when cool things don't happen, I am too disappointed.  Even when we do cool things, we barely speak.  Unless I am in a mood to do all of the talking.  Maybe I shouldn't even think about it.  That would probably be best.  I still need one of those switches that just turns my brain off when it's being bad.  

He took his last dose of the antibiotics at four p.m. today, and he's feeling about 50% better, so that's good.  

Monday, I get to hang with my friend.  I'm not sure what we'll do, but some kind of combination, or one of, the following:  sushi, movies, and/or an open mic.  I look forward to hanging with her because hanging with her is easy.  I don't have to think about anything.  We both speak.  To each other.  And, not a whole lot is to be said about the weather.  Though, it's a hard subject to get away from in the Chi, but the last time I hung out with her, it was in the middle of a blizzard, and we didn't even mention the snow once.  It was great!

Tuesday, I want to try and make it out to this free thing that the city is doing for Mardi Gras.  I do have to see what the weather is like because it is outdoors, but there is much free-ness involved, and free is good.  I'm sure I'll spend money, regardless.  If I go.  I hope I go.  But, that is actually Fat Tuesday, and I'd love to do something on that day.  It starts at 10:30, but it goes 'til 7pm, so hopefully I get there at some point during that time.  

And, at some point, I need to find a job.  That would be good.  I'm just really scared I'm going to be more miserable and create more problems for myself than I already have if I get a job that I hate. 

I'm really, really, really, really, really, really, really scared of that.  

Bottoms up! 

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Change is so desperately needed.

Well, I'm sick.  So, the one thing I've been looking forward to beyond all others was a no-go this evening.  

There's another meeting in two weeks, but I really wanted to go to the first one.  

The boy stayed home from rehearsal.  Instead, he has been here all night playing the violin.  So, I can't sleep, which is what I need to get better.

Oh, and he broke my favourite new bowl.  It was red.

Bottoms up!

Tuesday, February 25, 2014


I've decided to write at a different time today.  It is the time of day at which I feel the most despondent:  the morning.  He has only just gone to bed a few short hours ago.  He does not go to bed when he first arrives home from work in the middle of the night around five a.m.  I never sleep through the night.  I always wake up when he is home and up doing stuff in the middle of the night.  Our apartment is not big enough to comfortably accommodate two people keeping such different schedules.  (I usually fall asleep somewhere between one and two a.m.  I do try to fall asleep earlier, but it just does not work.)  I haven't slept the whole night through since I moved here in July.  It would be different if that were the case because of my children, but I do not have any children.  I wish it were different, but that just isn't the case.  Not sleeping correctly for well over six months, and feeling like that is completely out of my control, only contributes to my despondency.  I don't really know what to do to fix it.  When he finally comes to bed, he proceeds to get up several times before he actually falls asleep.  I wish he would just come to bed when he's actually ready to go to sleep.  So, at that point, I've been up for an hour and a half already, and I find it really difficult to fall back asleep.  I've tried leaving the room and sleeping on the loveseat, we do not have a couch, but the loveseat is too small for me to sleep on because I'm pretty tall for a girl.  So, then I just lay here and think way too much.  And, I cry a lot.  Because I don't know what to do.  I think about how it is not the amount of time that a person spends with another, but rather the quality of time that those two people spend together.  But, really, when we are together the only thing he seems to like to talk about is the weather, that is, when he is actually doing some of the talking.  I do most or all of the talking, and for an introvert that is extremely tiring.  We have already become an old married couple, but we are not married, and I am not old, and we've only been together just over a year.  He has told me, however, that there is an employee at work who refers to him as "grandpa."  He is younger than me, my boyfriend.  Not by much, but still.  At least, he went to the doctor yesterday.  At least, he got some antibiotics, so he should be feeling better.  At least, he took off of work today, so he could lay down and rest and sleep all day and get better.

You'd think I haven't talked to him about all of this, and these feelings, but I have.  I have tried talking to him about it on several occasions.  He is kind, and says that we will work on changing things.  But, nothing ever changes, and I've just sort of given up on the hope that they will change.  I'm not sure that they will change anymore.  I think this is just how he is and how things will be.  

He doesn't even like his job very much.  He doesn't really talk to the people when he is at rehearsal.  I went to a banquet once for his orchestra, and he talked a little bit with some of the people because I was talking, and there were times when different people said to him, "I don't think I've ever heard you talk."  He's been a part of that group for several years.  I get introversion.  I do.  I am a very serious one.  But, the thing about introverts is that we are selective about who we connect to, who we share with, who we spend time with, and we actually do crave connection with others, when they are the right others.  But, he is something else.  He is more than just an introvert.  I think in his mind he feels as though we connect because when he talks about the weather, he is actually talking and that is hard for him.  But, I need more than that from the man that I am with.  And, I just can't figure out if that is me being needy, or not appreciative, or what it is, exactly.

I do know that I no longer feel like myself.  I guess, that is why I have made an effort to blog regularly again.  Writing has always helped me, and writing here has always helped me the most.  So, even if my posts are boring, and my life is boring, and I'm not being very Strumpet-like, I know that eventually writing about things will help me figure shit out.  It will help me figure shit out in several areas of my life, and perhaps it will help me prioritize which area to focus on first.  It's always been about baby steps with me, and even if it's two baby steps back and one baby step forward, I'm still moving.  And, right now, I really need to feel like I am moving.     

Anyhow, tomorrow I start my writers' group, and that thought is the only thing that takes the despondency away.  

That, and Lumpkin.

Bottoms up!