On the six

November 7th, 2017, 9:10 AM by Goddess

Today marks six years of my captivity, officially.

The first day of this month marked six months in the current incarnation of said captivity.

Ran into an old friend on Saturday, from my earliest days. He has a job he loves and an offer pending that came in out of the blue, and at a higher salary.

Good choice to have. Not a Sophie’s Choice, like I tend to attract.

I was thinking about how happy he looked, as sickness from too much “peopling” washed over me as thick as the dread at the daily peopling I didn’t miss at all Friday and Monday.

And then one of my truly favorite people on this earth paid me a visit.

And then another came in, armed with fresh macarons from Paris for his favorite editor.

It’s probably safe to say today has peaked.

Otherwise, I can’t escape today because I lost my stupid pass to get in and out of Fort Hard Knocks. And I am due for a visit from the fashion police lieutenant.

But I’ll be OK.

At least a couple people have my six, and I have theirs. And today, that is enough.

In dreams

November 3rd, 2017, 9:07 AM by Goddess

In my head, I’ve written a flurry of furious blog posts. In reality, meh.

Today I prefer to think about last night’s dream, in which I found the ever-elusive unicorn — a man I am attracted to.

Maybe it was Meghan McCain announcing her engagement, as crudely and obnoxiously as anything delivered out of her stupid mouth. I thought she was gay. (I still think that.)

As for me, I’ve been feeling pretty asexual this past decade or so. So, good to know there’s still something stirring down there in the ol’ beaver moon. (That’s tonight, dontcha know.)

In any event, he was rich. Tall. Had an awesome butt. Never quite knew myself to be a butt girl. But I was grabbing it in the dream and rather enjoying it. He had a mansion by the beach. And long hair. Helloooooo gorgeous!

Of course, as dreams do, they serve up the uncomfortable. He was a private citizen. Sheltered. Wasn’t used to going out in public because he and his family were regarded as royalty. So anytime we went out in public, we had to be “appropriate.”

Which, I’m not exactly a PDA fan anyway. But damn. Put restrictions on my behavior and I’m going to rebel. Especially with someone that damn hot.

I got sick of it all in the end. Being around other people did me in. I wanted to introduce him to my world, and he was so happy to be in it. But I needed a break. Not a long one, but definitely a day to myself.

And I wondered if I will always be this way — ready to bolt at the first sign of anything real.

I guess I always thought if I found something right, I wouldn’t want to bolt at all. This worried me long after I awakened.

In any event, doesn’t this beat hearing about how I got bullied into a sham of a Halloween costume contest and made an enemy as I squirmed out of it? (And why is squirming/bolting somehow the theme that holds my life pieces together?)

The hits just keep on coming

October 22nd, 2017, 12:17 PM by Goddess

Sia’s name came up this week.

Well not by name, per se. But I heard the name of the editor who boarded the flight out of Vancouver just moments before she collapsed. The guy who assumed she made the flight … who got a call from their publisher in the connecting city to ask where she was … who assured him that she HAD to have made the flight because she was RIGHT BEHIND HIM. Who inadvertently provided temporary relief that didn’t last long at all.

His name coming up rattled me to the core. I said editing him probably contributed to the sudden cardiac event that took her from us. And another person in the room confirmed that his raw copy was truly a sight to behold, as it somehow went live in his new gig and it was … let’s just say breathtaking.

An opportunity to work with this guy is on the table. I had to ask who his editor will be. Since, you know, I would like to survive this all somehow.

Anyway, I got to thinking about Sia. Whether we’d still even be friends. She had an opportunity to move back to Baltimore. An opportunity that they mercilessly botched and, from what I’m told, resulted in her having a lesser title and pay after they’d raised both.

If you know my industry, you don’t have any surprise left in you. A world of hurt for the good people affected, yes. But it’s been a long time since my jaw dropped about anything.

But after “Lisa VanderPump” left, I would have called her. Call her like I hadn’t been calling her because she worked for LVP’s BFF.

I didn’t want LVP to catch wind how very much I’d had it and wanted an escape route. So I didn’t tell *MY* BFF, who maybe could have helped me or at least talked me off the damn ledge when I needed it.

Just like she hid the bullshit demotion from me and I had to hear about it at her memorial.

How’s that for how fucked-up things were?

Now I can run for any hills I want. Of course, without her up in B’more, I really don’t have any incentive to make our collective dream come true of working together again. There’s no dream left to fulfill.

I’d say “funny how things turn out.” But I’m not laughing.

You’d think I’d be accustomed to missing my friend by now. Since I’ve been doing it for probably two years before she died anyway.

Overriding impossibilities

October 2nd, 2017, 11:05 PM by Goddess

A dear friend of mine from Washington, D.C., posted something on Facebook that moved me so much, I can’t get it out of my head.

Borrowing without permission, but as a tribute:

“The premise of a ‘five year plan’ is complete bullshit. If you’d have told me five years ago that I’d be at another high school back-to-school night for my kid, I would have argued with the impossibility of that statement. Life overrides even the best-planned plans and humbles me by continually redefining what is possible.”

I knew her when she was in her mid-20s and I was 30. Both of us working around the clock. Both of us trying to lose a few pounds. And both enjoying a good craft beer and deep conversations about the world.

A couple years ago, we were a decade older and a thousand miles apart geographically. She’d unfairly lost a job or two and so had I. And she’d written another phrase that haunts me still:

“Things don’t always happen for a reason. Sometimes, they just happen.”

God I miss that girl sometimes. Thank the heavens for Faceypages and connections that predate social media.

In any event, who knew two years ago that this single-in-the-city girl would meet a great guy with a couple of kids? And that she’d transition into being a wife and mom and all that comes with it?

At 42, I still figured that I could/would have a kid. Preferably a daughter. I always wanted a son but that was mostly to ensure the father would stick around. But men don’t stick around for sons any more than daughters. And I like pink and all things girly and shopping for them. So, there you have it.

At 43 — wait, musical interlude …

“I learned the truth at seventeen
That love was meant for beauty queens
And high school girls with clear skinned smiles
Who married young and then retired.”

— Janis Ian, “At Seventeen”

Where was I? Oh yeah, at 43, I apologized to mom for not giving her a granddaughter. She would have been the best grandma. She deserves another little girl. Her efforts have been wonderful, yet wildly wasted, on a girl CAT.

All things pink.

It’s not really that I don’t feel like it will never happen. I just know I have a finite amount of energy and money and TIME GLORIOUS TIME.

The evidence of Hurricane Irma are still ever-present. I have some friends with PTSD from it. And (still!) seeing all the uprooted traffic signs and all the fall leaves on the ground WITH TREES STILL ATTACHED TO THEM makes them relive the sick, sad, helpless feeling every day.

You know, the same feeling normal people have had since the night of Nov. 8.

That’s MY fear. I really think Kim Jong-un of the West is gonna get us all kilt. You cannot convince me that the original North Korean nutcake doesn’t have a map of all the Orange Shitgibbon’s properties and isn’t going to use them for nuclear target practice. Oh and I happen to live within spitting distance of like four of them.

Not pictured: three golf clubs and a pair of buildings that bear his name even though he unloaded them.

So seeing Steph’s post gave me an odd sense of peace. I mean, if and only if I really wanted a kid, I could adopt. Foster. Get drunk and see how fertile these vintage eggs still are. Who cares about anyone leaving. I can do this myself.


Or — I could do the thing I swore I’d never do — I could date a guy with kids. I do know a hot dad and it’s killing me to NOT open my mouth and see about giving it a whirl.

Anywho, maybe I need to just not underestimate the universe. I’ve been pretty lucky. Maybe I don’t have a finite amount of luck that’s set to run out after all.

Case in point: I’m like 90 pounds lighter than I was a decade ago. MIRACLES HAPPEN.

New official pic with the last of my Delray tan.

Maybe I’ll get whatever it is that I never thought I could have, if only I would let myself think about whatever that is.

Or maybe I always thought I could have it all. But the older I get, the less I feel that way.

There’s a person on my team who always uses age as an excuse. Made a mistake, it’s because they are “an old person.” Does something I asked them not to do (again), “Well I’m old and I don’t learn as fast as I used to.” Argues with me that something should be a certain way after they battled me just a week earlier that we should do it the other way, “I forgot. My memory isn’t what it was.”

My reply is curt and firm. “Don’t give me an excuse. Give me your best.”

I don’t want to be that way. Not just a walking lawsuit, but I give thanks to my body for doing what it can do physically.

I thank the heavens that I can afford vegetables and nutritious food to nourish that body with.

When I get overloaded with tasks at home and work, and worry that I can’t give 100% everywhere,

I exude gratitude that my brain works better than most and I’ll do what I can, where I can … when I can.

And damn, I’m happy to have what I have, while I have it.

And there’s always that part of me that thanks the universe for the good things coming my way that are beyond my control or wildest dreams.

It think that might be what Steph was talking about. That the universe has surprises in store for you that are beyond your mortal comprehension. Forget the bounds of reality — those are about to be redefined for you.

OK fine. I never thought I’d get married. I ran off all my roommates because I hate people being near me. Honestly I want dual master bedrooms when I do meet a mate. I need a Gemini so I know the sex will be great. I want to live on the Intracoastal and have access to a first-class ticket to anywhere, at any time. I want enough of a fortune to want to leave it to someone. Maybe an adopted niece or nephew. I’ve lived alone in the metaphorical sense my whole life. Don’t make me die alone too.

Your move, universe. Don’t let me die alone and/or soon because Russia installed the king of my idiot neighbors as our Pumpkinfuhrer. I know you’ve got a lot of goodness to give, and I am a willing and grateful recipient if you have some more to send my way.

Pam (also, fuck cancer)

September 26th, 2017, 9:27 PM by Goddess

A girl I knew in school died yesterday.

She only started talking about the cancer a few months ago.

Went into chemo a couple months ago.

A few weeks ago, she wrote that she had finished her course of treatment and her doctor was very optimistic.

Two weeks ago, she posted requests for prayers.

A week ago, more prayer requests. This time, from the hospital.

Finally her page went quiet except from posts from friends, calling for prayers.

Then yesterday, the condolences started.

More prayers. So many prayers. For her soul. For her brand-new baby. For her three slightly, but only slightly, older children.

I do pray. Usually to say thanks. I’ve spent years asking for “things” that rarely came to pass. So, I just say thank you.

Today, I will say thank-you for my very brief but very vivid memory of Pam at age 16.

I somehow did not get put into an A.P. History class my sophomore year. No idea how or why. I got stuck in Nick Kapottas’ last-period class. It was filled with the high-school equivalent of “deplorables.”

I could tick off some of their names. And what they did to me. It was horrible. I sat in the first seat in the first row. On a good day, they talked loudly about how fat I was. On most other days, I got gum thrown in my hair.

That was the last time I took a non-A.P. class.

“K.P.” was the wrestling coach. History was not his thing. Hell, teaching was not his thing. He pretty much just tried to sell us hoagies to support the team, and left us to have study halls most days.

The nice thing was, K.P. took a shine to my mom on Parent-Teacher Day. I think they went to dinner a few times.

The nicer thing was, I never had to go to class after that. Not sure what grade I got. Or on what merit any of us could possibly have been judged.

I showed up on occasion. Not sure if K.P. ever gave us tests. I think he had to. And that’s me, all right — happy to show up for the damn test. Probably because I read the textbook in the library instead of going to class.

In any event, Pam was always nice. Never tortured me. Maybe said hello a few times. But she was watching me.

One day she came to me with a bunch of thoughts written down on paper. Said she knew I was a writer. Wondered if maybe I could write a poem for her to give someone.

I did it. She seemed pleased.

I don’t remember much about it. But one line, something about “the pavement shines like silver in the rain,” has always stuck with me. Those were her words. I remember wanting to preserve them as they were.

It was our secret, that we had worked together on that poem. I never knew who she gave it to. Or whether he liked it. Or what made her break away from those stupid people in that class to approach me.

We never really talked after that. But that was OK. I liked it that way. Having a secret ally mixed into that overflowing basket of deplorables was more comforting than I could ever convey.

I was shocked when Pam sent me a friend request on Facebook several years ago. Didn’t know that she remembered me. My heart was happy about that, in a way I can’t explain.

What I loved about her was every post was positive. She went through some shit in her life. But you’d never know it. Lots of pretty selfies with her newest ‘dos. Even when the treatments took her pretty hair, she had the cutest wigs and bandannas. A collection I covet, to be honest.

You could tell she was a loving mom, the “aunt” who helped to raise all the young people in her life, the girl with the mad hair-cutting skills who looked so pretty all the time and donated a whole lot of hair-styling genius to anyone who needed it — at no cost.

I don’t know why God takes the good ones. Pondered that all day, as I do every time someone truly kind is taken from us. Why did she have to suffer so much?

How will that baby boy know that she was my only friend in that stupid history class? Will he be kind like that to someone someday who needs it?

You sure fought hard, Pam. A warrior if I ever saw one. I didn’t know you, but I will always remember you.

Rest in peace, pretty lady. And also, fuck cancer. Seriously.