Nº. 1 of  27

Luxurious Sloth

slow and fancy

mouth, victim&assailant

For those of you who know me, it is no secret that I love sleeping. I can sleep for 10 or 11 or even 12 hours straight if I don’t set an alarm. I am sure this is not normal but my mom says I have always been like this. I have always loved sleeping and have always had trouble waking.

I used to fall asleep in class just about every day. Especially in my art history classes, shortly after the lights were turned off and the projectors turned on. In the corporate world, I learned how to fall asleep sitting up—my chin propped up by my left hand, my right hand on the mouse. You name it, I’ve slept through it: dinner at Handlebar, a Snoop Dogg show at the Congress, countless parties, roadtrips, and movies. Never out of boredom. Always out of helplessness. A wave washes over me like I’ve been drugged. My eyes grow heavy. I am literally useless. 

These days, I’ve been better at controlling my sudden bouts with uncontrollable sleepiness. I’ve found that carbs and gluten are triggers. Give me a beer and I’m asleep in 10 mins. Give me two Manhattans and I’m up all night.

But before I figured out why I was always falling asleep unexpectedly, I dreaded—absolutely DREADED—seeing someone else yawn. I would immediately yawn back, which would often start my downward spiral into slumber. It was something I struggled with for a very long time. I researched why this happens and what can be done to prevent it. And then I wrote about it.

2/9/2005

i am coming to terms with my mirror yawn. the way i can’t hold it in because i’m thinking about it and trying to. and even when i’m thinking about other things (breakfast, frozen doors, the broken vase) i am yawning. the roots of this problem are stubborn, ancient. once a social signal to the pack (evolutionists), now a sign of boredom. i hold with physiologists who suggest the cells are feeling deprived. who knew the tiny cells could be such persuasive bullies! napoleon complex is hard at work in our bodies. the cells impoverished, find a patsy (the mouth) and loot all the O2 they can find. i submiss to your (and yours and yours too) open mouth, demanding attention once again, looking for itself in others, rejecting lips bitten, half smiles, my tongue: the chariot riding across the horizon. in search of treasure, the mouth ruthlessly endeavors to catch a glimpse of a bead of saliva, a swollen tonsil, a filling. the tired mouth: a voyeur. a predator of some sort. a nuisance. we have issued edicts. enforced curfews. past attempts at starting a neighborhood watch proved useless. our mouths (even as a team) are defenseless. fighting fire with fire is merely a recipe for more yawning. i am examining the evidence, taking cultures, pointing fingers, conjuring a motive. i am eyeing my mouth in the mirror and looking for signs of forced entry. i have no leads.

another list

I held two part-time jobs when I first graduated from college. One was as a Evelyn Echols’ secretary; the other was as a receptionist at a salon. At some point, I realized that I was always talking or writing to someone. I was communication for hire. For Evelyn Echols, I was taking dictation for her and writing letters to people I never met. Then it was off to the salon, where I answered dozens of calls per day and greeted clients in between. Then I was in my car calling my family or friends to catch up with them on my drive home. And then I went out for the evening, mostly to Rainbo. Needless to say, I could have used a minute to myself. Out of my need for a little quiet time, I wrote this post.

2/5/2005

i am in constant correspondence. i am circling, hovering, swarming with words superfluous, dribbling down my chin. words like honey and lava draining slowly. these words are raw yolks oozing out my pores. i am talking, talking my jaws chattering, tap dancing, clapping, taking requests. typing all the wpm that i can. my fingers, fingertips, knuckles, the scars on my left hand are waiting for delegation. i am at your disposal.

again with the lists

I do not recall what this was specifically about but I’m sure I wrote it in a lonesome moment. As a writer, I have always found the best way to work through an issue is with creative writing. For me, it has always been poetry, which is why I majored in poetry in college. Luckily, as I have grown wiser, I’ve had fewer problems to work through but the downside of this is that I’ve had less to write about.

Edgar Allen Poe’s poetic principle suggested that a true writer writes not from inspiration but from duty and diligence. He claims that he wrote his famous poem, “The Raven” logically—he first considered what sounds were most easily rhymed with and realized that the English language has a lot of words that rhyme with “more.” And a poem was conceived.

I, on the other hand, have always been less methodical and have relied more on inspiration, which commonly led to (and still leads to) procrastination. So while I thoroughly enjoy the act of writing poetry, I cannot write seriously unless I am terribly sullen, which, as you can imagine, is not a highly sought-after state of mind.  

Lucky for you, dear reader, I was incredibly melancholy for most of my 20s so you’ll have plenty of reading material in my Myspace blog re-visitation series. This mood very easily could have followed me into my 30s had I not been hurled into small business ownership, which made me way too busy and stressed to reflect on my life in any existential manner. 

1/19/2005

i’m not the one raking leaves in the front yard. making piles. organizing the lawn. tidying things up. i’m not reading the paper in bed. or on the couch. not sipping coffee, not cupping my hands around the mug to sponge up its warmth. i’m not waltzing in the kitchen with the broom. not waltzing at all. not making pancakes or muffins or crepes or my bed. i’m not showing off my bookshelf. i’m not biting my nails and looking for a little eye contact, a pat, a downward gaze. i am not the one shaving or waxing, painting things, filing things. i am not lighting candles, nights, days.the votives, the tea lights, the little wicks and wax…i am not calling for them. i am not looking at them as i once did. i am not sleeping with the down comforter, or the duvet cover, the pillows, or the daydreams. i am not hitting the snooze button and curling up. i am not fitting ears in my palms, walking my fingers along the lobe. i am nowhere near lobes. i am not in the bathroom brushing my teeth feverously, smiling, humming, tap dancing. i am not singing in the shower, watching the water trickle down the mississippi spine. i am not thinking outside of myself, not leaving room in my week or my cardigan. not picking petals and assigning them answers to my future. i am not playing those hummingbird songs on the accordion. not filling the bellows with air and filling the air with the sounds of my hands. i am not finding myself in tall strangers, in heroines, in relatives. i am not saving the receipts of the years i’ve spent floating about, my aim off in the fog. i am not saying good morning and how do you do. i’m not changing my name to what it is, what i want it to be, what it may be. i am not compromising my stubborn brows. i am not counting my freckles, buying bigger bras, screening my phone calls. i am making lists and falling short. i am not happy about this.

a list of the things i miss about college

This post came not even a year after I graduated from college. I remember the moment when I realized that college was no longer a new experience for me, but I don’t remember how far along I was. I had been listening to a lot of Cat Stevens that summer (which makes me think it was only the summer after my freshman year but could I have really been that jaded so early on in my college education?) Anyway, it was summer time and I was working on campus in the Department of Accounting (not the one where they do accounting, but the one where they teach students how to become accountants, the poor things).

I was eating lunch in the cafeteria and looking out the brown tinted windows that plagued UIC at a group of potential freshman touring the campus and I thought to myself—I remember when I was touring UIC and how exciting that was and all the things I thought were going to happen once I got here and what I thought life would be like.

Then I realized how wrong I was about most of those things and it kind of took all the fun out of everything for me right then and there. I wasn’t disappointed in my reality, but rather, disappointed in the fact that I had figured out what this experience was about—that there was no mystery or excitement in it anymore. And then I realized what Cat Stevens meant in his song when he said that you may still be here tomorrow but your dreams may not. How in every experience, there comes a point when you stop dreaming about it and just kind of live it..

1/12/2005

a list of the things i miss about college

you will still be here tomorrow:::::but your dreams may not

1. having to take the el 2. having a u-pass 3. the excitement of picking classes and wondering about what they’ll be like 4. the people i knew 5. the writing center 6. the feeling at the beginning of a new semester 7. the strangers i never knew but wanted to meet 8. that strange rebellious “i don’t give a fuck” feeling that came over me when skipping a class. 9. the thought that the future was so very far away and that great things would happen the second i got my diploma. 10. all the newness that faded with experience 11. peer lunch dates 12. those rare classes where we all became friends and went to lunch as a class, including the prof. 13. the naive thought that being an intellectual is all that matters in the world. 14. the anxiety that came along with having to write a research paper, and the overwhelming feeling of satisfaction when it was finished. 15. writing workshops 16. the undergraduate english organization 17. the events i was in charge of organizing. 18. having 25,000 people from which to pick friends 19. all those eccentric professors. 20. the springtime when the trees would blossom and shed petals all over the concrete, urban campus 21. the poetry machine 22. the hustle and bustle of ccc

I never knew I was a 6

When I was in college, I befriended a guy named Lars. He was smart and sometimes funny. Nerdy and thought very highly of himself. I always saw myself and Lars as kind of odd-couple friends. I mean, he was into video games and he loved arguing. And I didn’t like either of those things. But he was usually sweet and down to hang and made good company when we weren’t having some sort of blow-out disagreement. 

I probably shouldn’t even be writing about this because Lars and I are friends on Facebook, though we are not exactly friends in real life. Our friendship ended abruptly after he moved to San Francisco and I went there to visit him. What I thought was a friendly trip to see a college buddy turned out to be, well, an awkward couple of days after Lars made a move on me that I didn’t reciprocate. And on my last day there he refused to tell me how to get to the airport, suggesting that I “figure it out” myself.

Anyway, the conversation below pretty much sums up our dynamic. This happened while he still lived in Chicago. Writing about this now makes me nostalgic for our friendship.

Oh, and I forgot to mention that it was an AOL chat—remember that?! He is Sauroman3 and I am loopdilooper. He is matter-of-factly explaining to me (an unsolicited explanation, mind you) where I land on a 1-10 scale of attractiveness. I would love to post a pic of him here but I don’t think he’d love that…

1/11/2005

Sauroman3: im sure you get hit on more than jeff does

Sauroman3: and your like a 6-7 girl

Sauroman3: wheras he’s a 9-10 guy

loopdilooper: ok lars

Sauroman3: maybey only slightly (jeff does get hiton a lot)

Sauroman3: (they just dont like to keep talking to him)

Sauroman3: maybey your more like a 7-8, you do clean up really well

Sauroman3: but you get my drift

loopdilooper: i clean up well?

Sauroman3: yea you dress well

Sauroman3: have good makeup sense

Sauroman3: etc

loopdilooper: …

Sauroman3: its just tough to get past 8 without big boobs or a big butt

Sauroman3: am i being too candid?

Sauroman3: is prude julie getting cranky with me?

Sauroman3: i deffinately think that im only a 6-7 

Sauroman3: if that

loopdilooper: so we’re on the same level of attractiveness?

Sauroman3: i think so yes

thank you, lisa jarnot, pt I & 2

2004 was a tough time because I lived with two heinously terrible “mean girl” roommates. We lived in a very reasonably priced three-bedroom apartment on Crystal Street. The rooms were large and the heat was free and would have been a rather pleasant living experience had it not been for my terrible choice in roommates. I had gone to college with both of them and they had not met each other prior to our living together. They were both Leos and I a Taurus. My shy and somewhat reclusive nature at the time did not mesh well with their massive Leo egos.

So what’s a girl to do when she lives with bullly bitches who make her feel unwelcome in her own home? Hole up in her room and write Lisa Jarnot-inspired poems about how much they suck, of course. By the way, this poem has two parts. Oh, also by the way, I should mention that the roommates were totally reading my blog (I never thought they would! They rarely spoke to me at all) and screamed at me about it later. But that’s a story for another time.

1/9/2005

Part I

they loved the living room and they loved to sit in it. they loved scary movies. japanese ones with subtitles. they loved to be entagled on the couch. they loved pico de gallo and tequlia shots. they loved that burning feeling in their stomachs. they loved to hush the cat and they loved the way he growled. they loved their music and their musical tastes. they loved the way they looked like siblings but weren’t. they loved their jeans and their belts. the loved the way they looked in jeans and the fact that they wore the same size. they loved beer, booze, shows and stir fry.

1/10/2005

Part II

they loved to sing together and they loved to sing in tune. they loved christmas and the christmas tree. they loved books. they loved their glasses. they loved doing laundry and they loved to do it together. they loved her schwinn and they loved to hate the 80s. they loved the other lovers. they loved their cell phone conversations and their weekends together. they loved his art and his high school track portrait. they loved to shake it. they loved cider beer. they loved the humidifier and the noise it made while they slept in her twin bed.

All join now and lament for the death of my free cable

This post is pretty self-explanatory! The summer after my senior year of college, we discovered that our apartment still had cable—and man did we watch the f*ck out of that cable. And boy were we sad when it disappeared!

12/5/2004

"I pressed her thigh and death smiled. Death, old friend, death and my cock are the world"

Ladies and gentlemen, we are gathered here today to lament the death of my free cable. Free cable found it’s way into our lives here on Crystal Street back in May. I clearly remember that joyful day when I received that call from Naomi, announcing the arrival of free cable. How happy we were to welcome it into our home! We rearranged the livingroom to accommodate free cable. It’s just not the same without it. Some of my best memories were made in the presence of free cable. Breakfast with Dawson and the Capeside gang. Email with Zach and Kelly. Dinner with SJP and the girls. Finally, I mourn the loss of Best Week Ever. Free cable and I had our last night together on Saturday. We watched “The Princess Bride.” Free cable left this world sometime while we were sleeping and Naomi discovered it’s snowy, scrambled remains this morning. Free cable, we miss you dearly. You touched our lives for 7 months and now you’re gone. We’re not quite sure how to move on, but we’ll manage. I know you’re watching over us. Somehow, someday, we’ll be together again. *sniffle

Don’t You “Ms.” me, missy!

image

When I graduated from college, I worked for an 89-year-old entrepreneur named Evelyn Echols. She had been dubbed “America’s first female entrepreneur” thanks to a successful career in the travel industry. After booking the honeymoon trip of newlyweds Joan Crawford (the actress) and her husband Alfred Steele (of Pepsi), she became known as “travel agent to the stars.” These days, she reflects on her life and speaks regularly to business students.

I’d arrive at her small Lincoln Park apartment at 9:30am on Tuesdays and Thursdays and took dictation for her letters, articles, and memoirs. We would more often than not butt heads. I would often liken her to the little girl Henry Wadsworth Longellow wrote a poem about:

There was a little girl,
            Who had a little curl,
Right in the middle of her forehead.
            When she was good,
            She was very good indeed,
But when she was bad she was horrid.
She was one half sweet and charming, and one half very very mean. Despite being “the first female entrepreneur” she was surprisingly un-feminist. Here is a post I wrote in amusement over one of our many disagreements. On this morning, she was writing letters to a friend of hers, Maria Shriver. She wanted to address her as “Mrs. Schwarzenegger” and when I protested, she went on a rant about what’s wrong with women like me today, especially the ones who keep their last names after marriage.

12/2/2004

Evelyn Echols says I’m gonna end up old and alone with my cat just like those girls in New York. She says that I need to start acting more feminine to get a husband. Evelyn Echols says that she was very happy to be Mrs. David Echols. She writes letters to Maria Shriver and addresses her as Mrs. Maria Shriver Schwarzenegger. Ms.Echols asked me not to fuck up so much in the future.

My Myspace Blog, revisited

Myspace reached out to me the other day and let me know that my new profile was up and ready for me to check out. While I didn’t care much for this tidbit of news, I was definitely curious to see if my once active Myspace blog was still somewhere out there. And to my surprise, it was. And so I did the only thing I could do: read all 234 posts. And now I’m going to share them here with you on Tumblr. 

Bat for Lashes / We Found Love

I have always joked around that if I ever get married, our “first song” would be Rhianna’s “We Found Love (In a Hopeless Place).” Hahaha. Bat for Lashes recently covered the song. What do you think about her version? 

Nº. 1 of  27