Friday, June 26, 2009

Sex and tacos

At several points today I could have let it get the best of me, driven to bark or into the old tunnels of marginalization where I’ve left crayon drawings on the walls.

It didn’t.

Used to declare love for my gym, now I say I like it. Management and staff change hands so often I haven’t pinpointed which surly desk clerk will pop a stink eye at my request for two large towels. The spinning bikes are worn already, rode hard and put away damp. The seat of the first I mounted slipped slowly through warm-up until my knees hit armpits. Moved, re-adjusted and enjoyed the tunes and coach who inspires me back again and again for ass and private area beatings.

Stop for an iced coffee and manna that is the Einstein chocolate chip bagel. Waiting patiently on line, holding a tiny crinkled bag of whole wheat and cocoa, the woman behind me jumped line. An “excuse me” and a jump. She then produced seven individual coupons - one free bagel each – and walked out with a gratis half-dozen-plus-one. I stood dumfounded for a minute as the overly athletic blonde behind the register took my bill.

“How are you this morning?” she asked. “That lady just totally jumped me in the bagel line. Not like we’re at a U2 concert of anything,” I smiled backed. Blonde Amazon gave me the bagel for free. I watched coupon-cunt zip out of the parking lot while picking her nose deep and in abandon. Hope anyone at home steers clear of the jalapeño bagel.

Home minutes when a ding alerted the boss wanted to chat. Annual pay review. My employer has a sneaky way of “freezing” raises. Like a super competitive game of professional dodge ball, we're rated on a scale, last man standing gets the green:
4 - your days are numbered
3 - hanging by a thread
2 - vanilla
2+ - (seriously) vanilla will a caramel swirl
1 - perfection, once begotten never begat again.

I got my 1 early in the career then settled comfy in 2+ for a decade. This year, well goooollly Gomer, I rated a 2. Quizzed the boss like vanilla crazy. “What could I improve on?” “Where did I lack?” An ace at management speak, he said everything and nothing in one breath. No raise for me.

My company CEO cashed a check of $1.8 million in salary and $5.8 million in a bonus-like payout in 2008. I’m Julia Roberts walking Sunset and handing over 50% each night.

The evenings free summer concert was cancelled mid-day “due to weather.” Something gray and green blew in for an hour or so before the sun returned. Worry not, the fling had e-mailed earlier, asking to come visit tonight. When one crotch closes, another opens and I quickly shifted gears to moist. Showered and powdered and dressed in a snug surprise under Michael Kors short black dress. Stepped out quickly to grab what I think is his favorite sixer, got it good and cold. He didn’t show.

Angry? Eh, more hungry. Changed into Vicky Secret lounge pants and thin white wife beater, sweated onions and seared ground turkey loaded with crushed tomatoes and a sprinkle from each jar on one side of the spice rack. Made blue corn tacos topped with shaved chipotle cheddar, the result almost as tasty as the sex I should have been having. Almost. Found a profound docu on telly and threw in a load of laundry. No plans for concerts in the sun or black lingerie tomorrow; really haven’t thought much past a morning at the gym and long steam.

Sounds like a good weekend coming up.

In just a bit may pop some corn in coconut oil, dressed in real butter and sea salt, washed down with a couple of frosty orphan Fat Tires and curl up with Conan. Don’t question me but I find him a sexy beast.

You’re welcome to join. Or not.

I’m good. Alive. And how are you?

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Jodie and the Pussycats

I used to tease. Used to predict mine was a spinster future of keeping all the balls that came on the porch and tea parties with hordes of cats dressed in wide-brimmed straw hats.

I was only half-kidding.

Then came a conscious, scary choice to live off script and explore life and lust and the soul and every day as “anything can happen,” tasting sweet and savory, placing a firm grip on whatever needed firm gripping at the time. The future became a happier vision of cocktails at a swingy retirement apartment, rolling my tube top down and hitting on all the interns. Or settling down in my eighties with a man who wears a jaunty cap, calls me "mother" and kisses me sweetly.

Cat Ladies is a docu-peek into the lovely, sad souls and self-proclaimed crazy collectors. Cat lady conducting feline inventory, counting “...un deux trois cat” all the way up to 116. Cat lady sleeping in a twin bed. Cat lady whose voice breaks when admitting bare bones loneliness. Cat lady apologetic of her need to care for others, care for something.

The Web site for the film declares:
"Women like Margot, Jenny, Diane and Sigi are easily dismissed as 'crazy cat ladies', but these women deal with the issues that all of us face to some degree - alienation, loss and loneliness in a society that devalues the 'different'".

Ladies, brave out for a cocktail. With people. And sex, a lot of it. With people. Different is beautiful and charming, connection sometimes difficult, yes, especially in a blinders-on-staring-straight-ahead world. Relationships often painful. And joyous.

Are there “Cat Men?” I know a few pussy collectors.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

She Will Be Loved

Big believer in signs, those taps and nudges from the universe, easy to miss messages. Signs are there to comfort, provide hope in a lost moment. Sometimes.

I don't mind spending every day
Out on your corner in the pouring rain

One’s been chasing me the last few weeks, a song that pops up on radio roulette while driving, plays faintly at the gym. Wafts overhead at the grocery.

Look for the girl with the broken smile
Ask her if she wants to stay awhile
And she will be loved

That part made me cry, just a little, in the car this morning.

It’s not merely romantic love that’s nipping. You can run from love, but if it’s really love it will find you, catch you by the heels. Stole that from Bono. It’s also love between friends, between families. Although that can feel in short supply, it’s not. Just easy to lose focus, not see it as clearly abundant when one is pining for a man's knuckles squeezing between fingers, or brushing hair back from a brow. Or staying awhile. I sometimes forget to tell my friends I love them.

Tap on my window, knock on my door
I want to make you feel beautiful

It’s genuine comfort that makes me sigh out loud. Sometimes. Of course achieving and owning that would require a change in habits and hobbies. Never fully tested, but once engulfed in a relationship, the casual fun would stop. It doesn’t for some, and being on the receiving end I have a couple theories why. Not going to delve deeply into why I seek impossible relationships and built-in, non-committal excuses, or say it has to do with feeling worthy or deserving. Yeah, not going to explore that right now.

It's not always rainbows and butterflies
It's compromise that moves us along
My heart is full and my doors always open
You come anytime you want

Still I wonder what that feels like, the broken-in-comfort, the COM to the passion. I wonder.

I know where you hide, alone in your car
Know all of the things that make you who you are

And perhaps that’s why love songs make me cry in the car. Sometimes.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

What's your name, little girl?

Discovered a new pet peeve when women considerably (and obviously) older than myself refer to me as “Ma’am.”

Do the math, I’m a Miss. Reminds me of the absolutely fabulous Patsy Stone who when referred to as “Madam" in the British comedy bitingly adds “-moiselle! Mademoiselle!!”

The men always throw me a Miss. But the cooter-riding-high-unflattering-panted clerk who chased me through Macy’s yesterday afternoon chose “Ma’am” to get my attention. Retail rule #1, flatter your customer (same applies to liquor store clerks and randy waiters looking to score; ask for ID.)

I call deserving ladies “doll” and men “baby” (sometimes to the wrath of insecure wives and sweat of guilty husbands). Men call out each other as “brother,” urban hip for the white guys. Get too eubonic, however, and it becomes street-lite and silly. More troubling is the “sister” tag between women. Comes out sounding ultra feminist, almost penis hating, something I hold great affection and grip for.

For a time a time ago, there was a man, a flirty friend and nothing more, who referred to me as “kitten.” I liked it. Now a girlfriend from decades past has tagged me that. I still like it. Been called “gumdrop” after a body part that sometimes extrudes in a similar size and form.

Just don’t call me Ma’am. It’s Jodie. Miss Kash if you’re nasty.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Best laid plans

It felt like it was going to happen. A cool night, crisp, clean sheets and duvet. Limited libations, a glass of merlot, just enough to keep the head and body merely cozy.

I felt a full, lasting night’s sleep lay ahead, my (hopefully) second in a week.

Last minute prep. Do I let the outdoor cat in? Mostly a fuzzy, comforting addition, she curls into exposed skin and purrs joyfully. But she also requires being let back out in the wee hours, (usually the 3:00 to 4:00 a.m. range). No, I wanted to cocoon deeply and undisturbed; she’d camp out tonight. Soon, however, I heard growly caterwauling out of the open window that alerts of danger ahead. A raccoon. Another cat. Rain. Begrudgingly, and knowing I’d be consumed with concern for her safety - we have some mean looking raccoons come ‘round here, the stupid clumsy kind that seem a bit crazy - I acquiesced. In she came and curled up in the crook of my knee and thigh, satiated.

An hour or two later I awake to the familiar sound of wretch. The indoor cat (fuck, I’m a cat lady) set the launch sequence and began to choke and spew, the result of her tissue eating fetish. Cleaned up, curled back up. I didn’t bother to look at the clock.

Just about 3:30 a.m., took the anticipated trip on sore, creaky knees down stairs to let the outdoor cat back out. By then the damp weather felt downright nippley; the overhead fan left on didn’t help. The long slumber would not come. I was too cold, too often awake, my mind now engaged.

So Saturday morning, fresh day ahead. Realized I never simply “waste” a day; I’m always going and planning and doing. The boring, necessary things mostly, picking up groceries for the week, changing out the old fire alarms for the new I bought more than six months ago or running errands. I have a need to tally up points, show results.

Today I chose to lollygag, have no idea where the day will take me. There’s the People’s Fair in one of the cooler urban neighborhoods downtown, tidy and nicely cleaned up, the homeless shipped to Starbucks or the movies for the day to make way for strollers and ‘burb bots. Local music and food and art and people in bad shorts. Although I prefer the cute bungalow neighborhoods on the other side of the highway, where I can actually find a place to park, I’d like to go, maybe. I’d really like to go with someone, chill on the probably wet grass, enjoy a beer and a back rub, listen to music I didn’t know I liked.

Those otherwise spoken for or lucky enough to engage a similar friend with the time and passion to spend a day doing nothing, I envy your Noah’s Ark two-by-two, built-in social network. I know many who’ve grown weary of their routine, the same face in the same bad shorts, and crave excitement of solo play or a fresh companion. Imagine for a moment this Saturday without yours. What would you do? Would you do it alone? A movie, lunch at cute café, just you? Perhaps more observer than participant?

Although I’m guessing some (many) would salivate at the prospect of my lazy no-schedules-no-kids-no-wife-no-girlfriend-anything-can-happen-maybe-I'll-get-laid day ahead, I’ve walked solo streets long enough to confess a hand to hold along the way, ears to share observance in and the joy of taking the passenger seat is hotly desired. So is that back rub in the park.

Oh what lies in the green grass on the other side of the Jones's fence.

So the day begins after another abbreviated night of sleep. I still have no idea what I’ll do with it.

Would be lovely to have the someone to not do it with.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

...three chords and the truth

I wouldn’t necessarily say I have a fiery redhead temper.

I wouldn’t necessarily claim to be a redhead.

Of course I boil at social injustice, cruelty to animals, a jerk boss and idiot drivers. But I’m talking spitting out, take-that-you-little-bastard anger. I’ve never hit another person (save a bullying brother or two in childhood) and rarely yell and scream (just the good kind, that which evokes God's name). I don’t express anger that way. But when it comes, in those momentary flashes it’s hurtful and mean. Downright chastising.

The worst of my temper flares when lied too. I choose to believe what is told me, when asked, until proven otherwise. I assume words and motives to be genuine.

The concept is utopian at best, naïve at worst. I’m actually shocked to uncover a lie or half-truth, similar to how I’m truly stunned each time I don’t win the Powerball. Years ago, a tarot card reader told me someone close to me, a man, would deceive me. I peeshawed and “oh pleased” the notion, deceit an impossibility from someone I’d given trust to in both hands. Looking back, I don’t think he deceived me; he just fell in love with someone else.

Lying angers me because it assumes one to be stupid, unaware. I imagine what parents go through, especially the cool hip ones, since kids pulling wool is a rite of passage. Watched (and was on the receiving end) of some from my nieces and nephew and it drove me batty; also provided a good chuckle given their modus operandi paled to our teenage rebel rousing. We had Boone's Farm Strawberry Hill, after all.

For many years too many, I didn’t believe myself empirically beautiful or was allowed the protection of unconditional love, but I could hold tight to smarts. So when something is revealed as disingenuous or false, I fall back down the rabbit hole to marginalized or inconsequential. And I get angry, then red faced by embarrassment. Like many too many, mine’s a past chock full of anger, and I don’t like my voice like that.

I ask for the truth and don't tempt or fish for something that's not. I never, ever ask the question “Do I look fat in this?” and only answer “Does size matter?” with the utmost of care.

Because I cannot tell a lie.

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