Posts tagged: Heartbreak

Scoring My Life

By , December 31, 2010

In November, while I was packing my life away, I found an old journal in which I had begun to keep a sort of score for each year of my life. I had a running tally going, with each year earning either a 1 or a 0. If the year in question had been better than the previous year, it earned a point. If it had been worse, it did not.

What with today being the final day of 2010 and all, it seems like the perfect time to share my scores with you. The journal was from many years ago, so I have filled in scores for the subsequent years. I suppose without some sort of commentary, it will be a meaningless set of numbers, so I will try to annotate it in places.

1995 1
1996 0
1997 1
1998 1
1999 1
2000 1 (I fell in love for the first time)
2001 1
2002 1
2003 1 (2001-3 is a big, long blur of contentment)
2004 0 (Mom got sick)
2005 -1 (worst year ever)
2006 1 (how could it have been worse than ’05? also, pretty good in general– traveled for first time)
2007 0 (transitional crappy year of blah and bad judgement)
2008 1/-1 (started super happy but it all fell apart by the end)
2009 1 (moved from LA to Oakland, made new friends, had best summer of life)
2010 0 (everything fizzled out, ended up homeless in Africa)

My score in life thus far is 9 out of a possible 16. That would have been a failing grade in school, but I have a hunch life is graded on a curve, so I don’t feel so bad. Plus, I hope I have at least a few more years left in me to run up the score a bit.

As you can see, I had a long run of good years, followed by some uneven times, and while my recent life has been somewhat lacking in the happiness department, I have a sense that better things are to come. For the first time in six years I feel little sparks of my old self flickering inside of me.

My life has been peppered with so many dreadful events since 2004, and I feel as though I numbly staggered through them without being affected in any meaningful way. It’s as if I stopped caring that bad things were happening to me, and felt no desire to seek good things. I let life wash over me. I bet there is a clearer way to state this, but I find myself unable to do so at the moment. The best way to put it is to say that for nearly six years I have felt extremely detached from the world around me: I could see my life falling apart around me, but had no drive or desire to prevent it from happening.

Now I care again. Of course, my life is an absolute wreck, but at least I want to fix it. I don’t know if I can do so, and I may be doomed, but that is not as important to me right now as the fact that I don’t want to be doomed. Before, ironically, when I still had the means to prevent it, I didn’t care that my life was disintegrating, and even if I now fail at rebuilding it, knowing that I once again want a happy life makes all the difference.

Do I have a New Year’s Resolution? To take active steps to make sure in a year’s time my score for 2011 is +1.

Share

Remembering Ian Curtis

By , May 18, 2010

I attended public school until the end of junior high, but once I hit the 9th grade, my parents enrolled me into the nearest Catholic high school. I found myself thrust into a brand new school, populated mainly by children from wealthy families, nearly all of whom had grown up together and gone through the same private school system since preschool. I was a 13-year old kid, already feeling the uncertainty and disorientation that comes with that age and the leap to high school, and I was completely out of my element. I was surrounded by kids from an utterly different background, all of whom were ensconced in long-formed cliques. I had little in common with anyone at the school, and as the school was an hour’s bus ride from my home, I didn’t even have any friends in the area to whom I could turn. I could not have been any more lost or alone.

Had my life been a Hollywood teen film, I would have accidentally befriended a popular and wealthy student who would have been enamored of my lower-class upbringing. After some humorous early false-starts, our friendship would have cemented over some exciting incident, and by the final reel, he would have introduced me into high society and I would have spent my remaining high school years enjoying friendship and popularity. I’d like to think I would have dated a cheerleader. However, as I actually dwell in the real world, I made no such friend. Instead, I drifted from one awkward false start to the next, and didn’t form close bonds with anyone; I was too athletic and tough to be a geek, but too poor and punk rock to be popular. I ended up a loner.

I cut class one day early in the school year, and ended up at a nearby record shop. At the shop, I purchased Unknown Pleasures, Joy Division’s first album. I was mesmerized by its iconic Peter Saville pulsar cover; that somber image summed up my mood so precisely that I bought the record without even being fully aware of who the band were. I carted the record around town with me for the remainder of the day, not quite sure what I had, but hoping it would live up to its promise. How could it not? Those stark, white lines radiating from the all-black background promised something foreboding and otherworldly; that night at home, I was at last able to play the record. From the opening line, I was entranced.

I’ve been waiting for a guide to come and take me by the hand.

I played the record over and over that night; as soon as side B finished I would flip it back over and play it from the beginning. In the voice of Ian Curtis, I had found poetry that spoke directly to my sense of isolation, and thus began a long-lasting fascination with not only the band’s music, but the singer and his life. When I learned shortly thereafter that Ian Curtis had committed suicide, the bond only grew tighter. Perhaps paradoxically, even though his lyrics were so often grim, and spoke of fear, disillusionment, and helplessness, I found something life-affirming in them. This man, who had felt so deeply the sorrows about which had sung that he had killed himself, somehow came to represent hopefulness to me. My fascination with Curtis and his music lasted well past my awkward adolescent years; just look at the title I chose for my blog.

Today marks the 30th anniversary of Ian Curtis’ death. In the three decades since his departure, his influence and legend have only grown. Joy Division, a band virtually unknown when I was in high school, today enjoys huge popularity. Movies have been made about the band, and about Curtis’ life, and it would not be a stretch to say that the band today enjoys more popularity than ever before. Yet to me, Ian Curtis and Joy Division remain a very personal facet of my life. When I had nothing of substance, Ian Curtis gave me something of depth in which to immerse myself, and offered a beacon of hopeful light at the end of what had once been Stygian emptiness.

Oh, I’ve walked on water, run through fire
Can’t seem to feel it anymore
It was me, waiting for me
Hoping for something more
Me, seeing me this time, hoping for something else.

Ian Curtis
Ian Curtis (15 July 1956 – 18 May 1980)
Love Will Tear Us Apart

Share

My Fake Plastic Girl

By , February 27, 2010

She looks like the real thing
She tastes like the real thing
My fake plastic love

For the most part, I’ve not read any of my old blogs since I wrote them, but as I move each one from the old url to this new one, I am more or less forced to do so while fixing links, updating the format, categorizing, tagging, summarizing and so forth. It is not easy. Sometimes I’m more than a little chagrined by the less than gripping writing or the trite choices of topics, but the hardest ones to reread are those like the Dreaming post. Reading that again evoked a complicated mixture of emotions within me, from the bittersweet to the embarrassing, and for more reasons than I can list, I want to travel back into time and smack myself over the head.

I was so unabashedly open about how in love I was. Which is fine, except that I can’t help but feel foolish in retrospect that I was going on and on about how wonderful our love was, and how amazing she was, when it was all a big joke at my expense. It isn’t as if she became a different person the day she up and disappeared; she was always that person and I was too blinded by love to see it. I realize that now, and so I look back at what I wrote I can’t help but feel awfully stupid.

The saddest thing I ever did see
Was a woodpecker peckin’ at a plastic tree.
He looks at me, and “Friend,” says he,

“Things ain’t as sweet as they used to be.”

I think the crux of what I feel when revisiting the old entries stems from the fact that I know what is to come. Just as each time I reread The Great Gatsby, I futilely hope for a happy ending, yet know all along that Gatsby is going to die, no amount of hindsight can change what I know came next in my life. If I could rewrite history by rewriting those old journal entries– if only it were that easy– I would do just that. Gone would be gushy blogs about true and perfect loves with best friends. No more would be the maudlin posts about future weddings, nor would there be any extolling the virtues of dream girls, and there most definitely would be none of these. In their place, I would write of my fake plastic girl: emotionless, selfish, dishonest, and uncaring.

If it seems like I still care, I don’t. If it seems like I am still hung up on her, I’m not. I’m past it all, and I’m again ensconced in a happy, productive life in which I am the master of my own heart and destiny. I wrote this in part because the old blogs have dredged up memories which seemed worth exploring, but mostly because amidst all the previous blogs devoted to my love for her, and later those of heartbreak for losing her, there needed to be at least one entry here that named her for what she really was– my fake plastic love.

Share

Nightmare

By , February 2, 2006

I dreamed she came back. It was as though nothing had ever happened. We stood outdoors in the moonlight and the Harry James Orchestra played behind us. Kitty Kallen sang to us.

Kiss me once and kiss me twice and kiss me once again,
It’s been a long, long time.
Haven’t felt like this, my dear, since can’t remember when,
It’s been a long, long time.
You’ll never know how many dreams I dreamed about you,
Or just how empty they all seemed without you.
So kiss me once and kiss me twice and kiss me once again,
It’s been a long, long time.

And we kissed.

Then I awoke. Alone. And the dream became a nightmare.

Share

Lessons Learned

By , January 26, 2006

In my heart there’s flowers growin’,
On the grave of our old love

There are two kinds of people: selfish and selfless. While it may seem noble to be among the selfless, it’s also very painful. We bear the burden of the selfish. We may sleep well at night knowing we’ve done right by those around us, but we are forever at the mercy of those ready to trample us for their own gain or amusement. But do selfish people really think they’re doing anything wrong?

I don’t think people like Fizzy think of themselves as bad people. Sure, in the cosmic good/ bad scheme of things they are unquestionably the bad ones, but they must be able to justify their actions to themselves. How else can they make it through the day? I get caught up wondering stuff like “how could she?” or “why did she?” when I really should just chalk it up to the fact that it’s her nature. A selfish person takes it for granted that acting out of self interest is acceptable, rational behavior. The pain they cause those left in their wake is to them probably some sort of unfortunate byproduct that can’t be avoided. “Better you than me” most likely sums up their attitude.

I remember so many things that I should have seen as signs, but I failed to read them at the time. I was blinded by love, as they say. I remember how she always stole things from her workplace, or how she lied to her parents and sisters all the time. I remember her one day cutting all ties with her then best friend, and never telling her why or even looking back. Somehow, it never registered to me that one day I might be on the receiving end of such behavior.

So what have I learned from Fizzy? Many things, both good and bad. I know what it means to be in love with someone. Moreover, I understand that love transcends all rational thought. I know what she did was wrong, and I know I shouldn’t love her anymore, but I still do. I hope I’ll fall out of love, and if I do, I now know what true love is, and I forever have a barometer by which to measure future emotions. I’ve also learned to try not to let love blind me. I placed unconditional trust in her. I overlooked the aforementioned telltale signs, and it was my downfall. I know better now. I’m confident that one day I’ll be ready to try again with someone new, and I know better than to let my guard down. I think I can eventually trust someone again, but it won’t be without careful consideration. I know I can never be 100% sure about anyone, but maybe I can be sure enough to try again. Maybe.

Share

What is This? MySpace?

By , January 6, 2006

Since MySpace is all the rage these days, here is the latest ridiculous “survey” that I’ve filled out there, saved here for posterity. And for future embarrassment.

9 lasts.
last cigarette: I don’t smoke, but I had my last pretend cigarette whilst getting air outside at the Chinese Hospital casino bash
last beverage: coffee at Fenton’s
last kiss: friendly? Chloe, unless I kissed Josh tonight. I think I only bundled him up. romantic? Tzuen.
last cd played: actual CD? Brian Jonestown Massacre. Last song, Joy Division is playing now.
last bubble bath: at the Madonna Inn in October of ’04 with She-Who-Shall-Not-Be-Named
last time you cried: this morning :/
last time you laughed: Moments ago whilst foos-balling with a super-stoned Josh

8 have you evers.
have you ever dated one of your best friends: no
have you ever skinny dipped: no. wait, yes. forevs ago
have you ever kissed somebody and regretted it: boy howdy have I ever
have you ever fallen in love: yes
have you ever lost someone you loved: yes
have you ever been depressed: consult previous blogs…
have you ever been drunk and threw up: *nod*
have you ever ran away: no. but ask me again in a couple weeks.

7 states you’ve been to.
1. Alaska
2. New York
3. Michigan
4. Arkansas
6. Hawaii
7. Texas

6 things you’ve done today.
1. got drunk
2. ate cheeseburgers, plural
3. listened to music
4. read comics
5. wilded in the streets with Teddie, Bronson, Kevin, Josh, and Nick
6. sent a fax

5 favorite things in no order.
1. my friends
2. being massaged
3. cooking
4. her, but not the her you think I mean
5. film noir

4 people you can tell [almost] anything to.
1. Teddie
2. Kathryn
3. Chloe
4. Diane

3 wishes.
1. to be happy again
2. to trust again
3. to love again

2 things you want to do before you die.
1. spend time in at least 50 countries
2. find out why

1 thing you regret.
1. trusting her, the bad her

Share

Trash

By , December 29, 2005

Maybe, maybe it’s the clothes we wear,
The tasteless bracelets and the dye in our hair,
Maybe it’s our kookiness,
Or maybe, maybe it’s our nowhere towns,
Our nothing places and our cellophane sounds
Maybe it’s our looseness

But we’re trash, you and me,
We’re the litter on the breeze,
We’re the lovers on the street,
Just trash, me and you,
It’s in everything we do

A friend recently chastised me for, as she put it, “associating with trash.” Apparently, many of my friends aren’t ambitious or “going places” and I’d be better suited to hang out with young lawyers and other motivated and soon-to-be-wealthy professionals. My initial reaction was shock at hearing one friend describe the rest our friends as trash. I happen to think they’re great people, or else I wouldn’t be friends with them. After a moment something else occurred to me: what the hell makes me any different? If they’re trash, aren’t I trash, too? My friend explained that yes, I am trash as well but I have a decent-paying job and have saved some money, so I’m above them. She described me as “trash with money.”

This did not sit well with me. I tried to see the side of the friend who said these things to me, but her attitude is diametrically opposed to everything I believe in. The more I’ve mulled it over, however, the more I see that she is right, to an extent. Just like Brett Anderson wrote in this post’s epigraph, we ARE trash. I’ve been trash all my life. Proudly so. I grew up poor, in one of the “bad parts” of Los Angeles. My father would routinely come home from work after having been robbed, once whilst tied up and at gunpoint. I remember my mother sometimes buying two fast food cheeseburgers and cutting them into pieces to feed three of us. For most of my childhood, my clothes were ordered from the Sears-Roebuck catalog. Going out to eat meant Taco Bell or McDonald’s– Sizzler if it was a special occasion.

My job often entails me interacting with moneyed folks, and by and large I find I have nothing whatsoever in common with them. I don’t dislike those in the stratospheric socials classes. I harbor no ill will for them, and congratulate them for the hard work or good fortune that got them where they are. It’s more that I have an entirely different value system and lifestyle than they do. And yes, the sense of privilege and entitlement that sometimes seems to run rampant through the upperclass can at times be sickening, but for the most part they are people like anyone else. They just aren’t the sort of people I feel comfortable being around. Sure, a few lucky breaks and wise choices on my part have landed me in a career that provides me with a decent level of income, but I don’t consider myself a part of their world. For that I am glad, as I think I’d be miserable if such people were my friends. I was born and raised trash, and trash I’ll always be.

And the road that I have walked upon
Well it filled my pockets
And emptied out my soul

Truth be told, money is almost meaningless to me. Earning it has never been my goal. I realize I need some to survive, and while I’m glad that I no longer have the money worries I used to have, I know that I was a much happier person when I was still poor. I once gave the girl I loved the last dollar I had so she could make good on her bills, and I gladly ate leftovers and scraps for a week until more money came in. I was happier eating those meals than I am now that I can eat (nearly) anywhere I choose. And now that I have a little money, I do my best to share it. I treat my trashy friends whenever they aren’t fixed for cash, I over-tip trashy waitresses working dead-end jobs in nowhere towns, and I give to charities that help trashy people in other cities and nations. I even gave a twenty to a trashy homeless man the other night. So yeah, trash with money is fine by me.

Share

Promises

By , December 27, 2005

I wasn’t going to post this. I wrote it, and decided it was much too personal to share in a blog. But I did share it with a friend, and she responded with her thoughts on the matter, and her own experiences. Other friends have shared their versions of the story, and when it comes down to it I think what I have learned from all this is the true nature of love. When someone falls in love– truly, honestly falls in love, it’s forever. There is no undoing it or going back. The love becomes a permanent part of that person. When both people fall that way, it works. When only one does, he spends the rest of his life trying to forget something that can’t be forgotten. And so:

At some point years ago I realized I was going to love Sue for the rest of my life, and now that I’m no longer supposed to do so, I don’t know how to stop. I don’t know how to shut off those feelings. I know she’s gone, and never coming back, but my heart still belongs to her. It’s been over nine months now. For many months I didn’t know where she was, or if she was even alive. By now it has become clear that she decided to vanish one day, and couldn’t be bothered with saying goodbye to me. I also know that wherever she is, she isn’t thinking about me, yet once again I am sitting here missing her, just like every single other day since she left.

Every time I promised to love her for the rest of my life, I meant it. I don’t say such things lightly. She is the only girl with whom I’ve ever fallen in love. It was a gradual process. By the time I first told her I loved her, we’d known one another for nearly two years, and I was already hopelessly in love. Over the next five years, every time I promised my love to her, I absolutely meant it, and every time, I felt it even stronger than before. There were times that I held her in my arms so tightly that it felt like we were one person. I’d sometimes feel so much emotion that my body would tremble; I’d honestly feel so much love inside that I would literally shake on the outside. I’d never experienced anything remotely similar to that in the past, and I doubt I ever will again.

I don’t know what to do. I don’t break promises to people. I just don’t. If I promise I will do something, I always do it. Now I am faced with the fact that I am supposed to break all the promises I made to her over the years. I don’t know how to do this. I can lie to myself and pretend I don’t love her, or that I never did, but that doesn’t change the fact that I do. I meant what I said to her. I really will love her for the rest of my life. It’s unfortunate that she has left me, but that really doesn’t change anything, does it? My promises, like my love for her, were unconditional.

I’ve tried dating. It feels wrong. I feel like I am cheating on her. Which makes no sense, because she is long gone and not coming back, but I still feel the way I imagine a person cheating on his girlfriend must feel. I met someone wonderful recently, and by all rights, I should be focusing on her, even though the circumstances surrounding her point to another doomed love affair; I should at least be able to find out.

I need to fall out of love with Fizzy first, and that just isn’t happening. It doesn’t help that the last time we spoke, the last thing she said to me was “I love you.” She once promised that no matter what happened, how she felt, or how hard it was, if she ever thought what we had was finished, she would tell me so. She broke her other promises to me, and she seems to have lied to me about many things, so I shouldn’t be surprised that she was lying when she said that to me, but there is still some stupid part of me that believes in her. And every time I try to start over with someone new, it just feels wrong, because I’m still waiting for someone who is never coming back, and I’m still in love with someone who stopped loving me a long time ago.

Share

HHGFF

By , December 25, 2005

It’s half past four on Christmas morning and we just finished cooking and cleaning crabs for tomorrow night’s dinner. Someone has been kind enough to adopt me for the holiday, and we’ve been hard at work preparing to make dinner for her parents and relatives. I’ve been looking forward to it, and I know it will be a marvelous Christmas. Of course, I have one Christmas wish, which I know won’t come true. Yet, at the same time, if asked with whom I most want to spend this day, I would say with all honesty there is no one in the world I’d rather be with this Christmas than exactly whom I will be with. I may be far from “over” the past, but the present has been a little bit better of late. I don’t believe in fate in any way, shape, or form, but it is remarkable how things sometimes work out. HHGFF. And ever.

Share

Anniversary Redux

By , August 19, 2005

This is the only entry that is too cubbing to re-post to the new blog.

If I change my mind, I’ll post it. *cub ears*

The comment exchange with my stalker is pretty rad though. At least you can still see that bit of lore.

Share

OfficeFolders theme by Themocracy