howeverbrief: (Skull)
I had a dream a few nights ago that woke me from a very deep sleep. What is it about people who have been gone ten years or more? How do they pop back in every once in a while and set the whole town ablaze only to vanish again? I don't even know what you look like anymore. I am long over all this. I am over wanting to mumble apologies and have them misunderstood, igniting the pain all over again, but that's what I do in my dreams. I face it without actually doing anything. It's anxiety I neither want nor need. We were never good enough together anyway.

I am worried about the cat again. She's sneezing. It is getting harder to get her to take the steroids, which yes, I wouldn't want to take either if I were her, but come on. Her eating seems to have slowed, and she puked while eating a little while ago. I'm sure it's nothing, but I am frightened anyway. We shall see.

Mike is out of town again. He was in Livermore Sunday night through Tuesday night for his monthly meeting at his home office. Tomorrow he has a food presentation he was asked to help with in Sacramento, and he has to get up really early. He is in another chat window I have open, but I am not being very good company right now. I don't know why I can't just... be okay, I guess.

Work is okay. Frustrating in certain ways. Still waiting for the work that's going to push us over the edge in this codification project. Still not quite getting anything else done except in fits and waves whenever there's a panic. This has been going on for too long, but apparently it shows no signs of stopping. There has to be an end. We have other things we need to do in the interim before session work arrives again sometime in the fall. We have no control, though. I think too damn much. I need to let it go.

I'm not making any sense really, stringing together words for the sake of it. Sorry. I'm feeling kind of down, and this isn't really helping. I'll try again later. Maybe tomorrow will be better.

Because in your heart, it's loud. Oh...
howeverbrief: (Skull)
Kung-fu fighting? )

Speaking of exes, I got this message on new year's eve: "With all the crap that's happened this year I want to say that I am sorry for the way that I treated you and acted around you. I was an insensitive asshole and it was a wonder that you were ever friends with me. That being said I want to thank you for all the years that we were friends and apologize for the years we were not because it was my fault! I hope you have a great 2016"

That would be from Thomas Warner, who I hadn't heard from since his grandmother, the only reason I knew him in the first place, died last April. Weird stuff. I didn't respond.

Not speaking of exes, we took Kiki to the vet yesterday because she's been sneezing for weeks now and getting it all over everything we own (plus we are still concerned and all, haha). The doctor gave Kiki another shot, her third since last August, as well as some information about a CT scan because she's still concerned she might have a nasal tumor and that would be the best way to figure out if she does, though they might take it and still not be able to see it. We're on the fence about it. On one hand, I'd like to know if she has cancer. On the other, it's an estimated $500-$1000 test, and every time they've given her this shot, she's gotten better for a while. Just hard to be on the roller coaster of not knowing, and since Kiki favors Mike, I'd hope he wouldn't have to go through the same deal he went through with his cat, Katie. Time will tell I guess. New to this appointment, they found she had a swollen lymph node in her leg that could be due to inflammation or cancer as well, so that's fun. This is not counting in Olive, who we haven't gotten a senior screen for but should because she's reabsorbing a tooth and should probably get dental work but they don't know if that would kill her in the process because of her age. Sigh.

And we're considering children at some point?!

This weekend has been pretty low-key otherwise. Usual chores and such. We also went to brunch today for an early celebration for my dad's birthday, which was nice, no drama, and tasty. Otherwise, my head is in a weird place, but at least I also have the day off tomorrow. Not much else to report now, I suppose.
howeverbrief: (Ink)
I had a dream that I was back in college and dating Chris again, only I figured out later I'm married and felt really bad about it. My dream self then decided to debate who was the best out of him, Austin and Mike, and of course, Mike came out on top for several reasons, which made me feel even worse for kissing and having feelings for someone behind his back.

I woke up alone. Of course. Mike's in Livermore.

I realized today that it's been close to if not exactly ten years since I've seen Chris. If I felt like digging, I could figure out the precise day, but it doesn't really matter. As far as I know, he's long gone from here. Not too many months after that, I started up with Austin, and that relationship remains the longest I've ever been in, but not for too much longer. (May of next year will crush that record if you're curious.) Austin lives closer to me, but I haven't seen him in maybe four and a half years? Just after I started working here but before I moved, I think.

I've known Very Pretty for almost fourteen years. (How's that for weird, eh college roommate?) Certain other friends have come and gone in that period. Before her, my longest friendship lasted twelve years before I severed ties. Most of the people I grew up with I either don't talk to or don't know anymore outside of facebook, and that's okay.

Recently, I've been downsizing my friend's list there. I had a strong reaction to seeing pictures of someone I went on one pseudo date with after breaking up with Austin which didn't go anywhere because he had some derogatory things to say about gay people at the end of it. I literally know more about him through his facebook than I do from the time I spent in real life with him, and I decided I didn't care at all about him. Then I looked around and decided I didn't care about a lot of people, and suddenly I was below 120 friends on facebook.

I've probably spent a little too much time thinking about how social contacts used to work. I seem to recall in pre-internet times being able to entirely fall out of touch with someone over the course of your life, to the point where you hardly (if ever) think about them if they didn't mean anything to you. Also, it was a lot harder to look someone up if you ever had a passing whim about them, let alone a search engine at your fingertips begging you to find out, hey, that person lives this sort of life now! Isn't that interesting and not at all ultimately useless? Perhaps this sounds cruel and weird of me, but I've been feeling like that antiquated process would be preferable to the many slow deaths of relationships you experience over social media--people ghosting out of your life instead of reminding you every once in a while what they ate for dinner and how much you've both changed and disagree now. Lives coming together then drifting apart. The same old story told by different players.

I guess I'm mostly tired of caring about people who wouldn't notice if I suddenly disappeared. Yeah, I guess that makes me an asshole.

My dad was here yesterday and looked at one of the paintings I have on my wall. He said it was amazing because my Uncle John painted one almost exactly like it, down to the circles and color scheme. My mom said I was my uncle's niece. I wish I could have gotten to know him as an adult. He's been gone for fourteen years. I miss him.

But here we are, and time is short. It seems to be getting shorter all the time.
howeverbrief: (Temp)
I couldn't sleep part of last night because our screen door vibrates and makes terrible noises in high wind (and damn me for not remembering to get that fixed until it's 4:00 in the morning and I can't sleep). So, I went into the guest bedroom and stayed awake for a few hours because the window in there also rattles in the wind.

Anyway, by the time the wind stopped and I slept, I had a dream about the guest room, which was huge. The bed had moved to the middle of the room while I was sleeping, and everything else in the room was pleasantly arranged with junk. I went to move the bed, which was really easy to lift, back against the wall. When I went to move the exercise bike Mike got me for Christmas (and I've gotten to use twice since then), I realized my foot was still broken. I pushed the bike into place on one foot somehow (because I'm really adept at hopping around now, I guess?), and then went to move a collection of magnifying glasses to their place on the mantle (because I now had a fireplace in my guest bedroom).

And yes, around this time, I realized this was a complete fantasy world and woke up again, pretty close to when my alarm was supposed to go off. I guess this is slightly better than the dream I had where an ex came to visit me because he said he couldn't stand being away from me anymore, and I told him I was married to a different ex, which then confused me because I couldn't remember getting married to him. That's... awesome?

Thanks, wind!
howeverbrief: (Winter)
I think my last entry touched on anxiety. This is nothing new for me. For some reason, it reminded me about several incidents throughout my life where I've been obsessed with things that scared me, which meant I thought about them all the time even though I knew I was freaked out by them for no reason I could explain. Here's a list of certain movies, songs, and other media that have freaked me out for short periods of time along with anecdotes about each. I almost always end up looking back on these periods and wondering why they had such a strong effect on me, probably because I don't feel that way at all currently. Luckily, I am not as prone to these bouts of anxiety, but as I was reminded earlier in the week, I am not immune to new disturbances cropping up from time to time even now.

Fantasia: Night on Bald Mountain
I loved Fantasia as a kid. Coming from a family who had so much music in their background, I suppose this isn't a surprise. (My father is a near-prodigy at piano, has perfect pitch and plays by ear to this day though he's going deaf; my mother also played piano; all of my siblings had piano lessons, but in addition, my brother has perfect pitch, sang, and played tuba; my older sister played drums; my younger sister plays guitar; and I played flute and clarinet, which I ought to try picking up again one of these days.) My parents tried to instill in all of us an appreciation for all kinds of music, and one of the easiest ways to introduce us to classical music was through Disney. I adored most of Fantasia, from The Nutcracker Suite to Dance of the Hours, because most of it involved happy, dancing animals or other anthropomorphized animals.

Then we got to Night on Bald Mountain, and I would hide in another room. I don't know what it was about the segment, but all the demons running around with the culmination of the devil being revealed set to that music managed to break my little brain every single time. I'd lay awake after watching it and run it over and over in my mind, thinking about how evil it was and how the devil was everywhere waiting to pull me into his grasp. I'd heard about the devil at church, but I think having him represented that way in all his fire and brimstoney glory crystallized something in my brain and stayed with me a long time. I still can't think about it without feeling kind of sheepish about the whole thing, probably because I am not very religious these days.

My dad had a lot of movies. He tended to buy whatever he thought looked interesting so he could watch it later, which could range from action to drama to comedy. He got to where he wouldn't let my siblings and I watch them until we "checked them out" with him first, but before that, we had pretty much free reign of whatever ended up in the movie cabinet. One of those movies was Toys. With a family history of liking Robin Williams movies (Mrs. Doubtfire, Patch Adams, etc.), it seemed reassuring that he was on the cover, especially in a funny looking hat and under a innocuous sounding title. Boy, was I lulled into a false sense of security. The movie is about an eccentric toymaker who dies and wills his toy factory to his brother, who is a military general. The toymaker's son, played by Robin Williams of course, is more like his father and wishes to see the factory continue to make toys, while the general is very serious and begins to make weapons instead of toys. When Robin William's character decides to fight back against his uncle and storms the factory, my brain broke. I can't find video of the exact scene that gave me anxiety, but here's the trailer.

I have no idea why I found the scene (which involved exploding wind-up toys in a very dark setting) so upsetting. I think it has to do with my strange latent pacifism even as a kid. Through most of my childhood, any time I saw something that involved very overt conflict, even if it wasn't very violent, I would be very uncomfortable. I haven't watched the movie since that time, but watching the trailer makes me think I might find the metaphors and story-telling very ham-handed and ridiculous now. However, I still can't see why this movie was even remotely marketed toward children. Very odd.

Ed Gein
In college, I spent way too much time looking up random stuff on the internet. (That's not to say I've stopped, only that it's slowed way down because I don't have as much time or interest these days.) As I was surfing the web one evening, I ran across a link talking about a documentary that was being made that talked about Ed Gein. Having never heard of him before (and the link saying that this was the man who inspired both Silence of the Lambs and Buffalo Bill in The Texas Chainsaw Massacre), I did a search for Ed Gein and was subsequently horrified at what I found.
This might even have been the first site I ran across.
The more I read on various sites about his crimes (necrophilia, skinning, and woman suits, oh my!), capture and trial along with seeing pictures of the crime scene and Ed Gein himself, the more I felt deeply disturbed by it.

However, a few days later, I was barely fazed by it. I've even gone on to read about other serial killers and found their stories fascinating rather than repelling, probably because I have more separation from it now, and these days, Mike and I watch a lot of ID Discovery, which has a lot of true crime stories of a similar nature. Shrug.

GG Allin
Later on, I remember a certain journal I read (who was authored by someone I went on to meet and marry one day ;) ) spent a lot of time talking about various punk bands as well as a man named GG Allin.
GG Allin's Official Site
I spent a couple of nights pouring over GG Allin's story, from his terrible upbringing to videos of him with underage girls on talk shows to his shows where he cut and abused himself in various ways to his death and funeral. It all seemed so crazy to me that I came back to it again and again for a while, trying to understand why someone would live that kind of life. I think I eventually came to the conclusion that I couldn't really understand, though I find it interesting that I never really listened to much of his music, which was disturbing enough, though that's why I went searching in the first place. It's probably better that youtube wasn't as active back then or I might have gotten more into his music. I find it funny that I've had dreams about GG Allin since Mike has moved in, though, because my subconscious remembers somehow. Heh.

EDIT: And Mike just played me a GG Allin song, and I had to laugh at the whole thing, so I guess I'm cured. ;)

I've had several minor obsessions since then, though most of those are situational rather than media-based. For example, I was very weirded out by Carnival's 'Poop Cruise' last year, maybe because I kept thinking about how horrible that would be to experience. I also was very horrified by Robert Swift's foreclosed mansion, again because I couldn't imagine how someone would allow that kind of situation to happen or understand why anyone would destroy such a beautiful home and life. However, these stories also tend to take on a flavor of the week, as my obsession with them is short-lived and I'm easily distracted after a few days, which is good. I don't know what I'd do if I had to live with these odd obsessions all the time, and I'm glad they eventually are overtaken by daily concerns and life.

Obsession: Dark Desires
Still, like I said when I began, I am still vulnerable to these feelings, and I was reminded of this earlier this week. Mike and I watched an episode of Obsession: Dark Desires the other evening, and even though it's a stupid TV show in that soft-documentary style that has the victim telling her story to the camera with reenactments of what happened to her played by ridiculous actors, I was scandalized.
I like what you've done
I don't know if it was the woman's craziness, her stalking or the story of what happened to her victim in general (or the fact that this runs parallel to my own sister's stalker killing himself recently, which brought up a host of anxiety-triggering memories from years ago), but I ended the evening telling Mike that I never wanted to watch that show again. That was probably an overreaction in retrospect, though I don't really feel like I need to see more shows about stalking. I'm still feeling kind of jittery about it, but I'm sure that feeling will go away.

If memory serves, it all does eventually.
howeverbrief: (Ink)
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Come on. You know I was a band nerd.

I play clarinet. I've been playing it since the 8th grade, when I had to switch instruments due to a diagnosis of vertigo. (I have inner ear issues. I'm not sure if the near blackouts I suffer occasionally are from this, low blood pressure, or a combination of both, but it's pretty irritating.) Before that, I played flute for two years. Yeah, I had to stop playing flute because mustering up the air to play it made me even dizzier than I already was. (Did you know that playing the flute takes more air than playing the tuba? There's your useless fact of the day.) Anyway, I played clarinet for the rest of middle and high school, and I've played it off and on since, though not near as much as I used to. I used to be pretty good at it, getting to where I could play a three-octave scale and using size 4 reeds. I even made first chair of honor band my senior year of high school, which meant that I was the best of the clarinet players in our district (and had to awkwardly tune the rest of the honor band before our performance, super). I even tried out for the orchestra when I went to college and they were prepared to offer me a scholarship, but being clumsy and having no experience marching, I had no interest in doing marching band, which was a prerequisite for the scholarship. Oh wells.

Actually, for many years, I was the clarinetist in our school band. Our school was so small (and band was never all that popular) that I was either the only person or one of two people who played clarinet. Then again, I graduated with a class of 13, some of whom I had known since pre-school, so what do you expect, really?

As I've mentioned, I've also played piano. I took piano lessons for a few years as a young child; I picked it up again in high school; but I still don't know it very well because I stopped practicing a long time ago. I do know a few songs by heart, though, including one by Mozart, and I used to drive my second teacher crazy in other ways too. She used to try to teach me by playing the song for me so I would know what it was supposed to sound like. She stopped doing that when she realized I wasn't really looking at the music when I was playing and was focusing on my fingers instead.

I can read music, but I come by the annoying talent of playing by ear naturally, though I'm not nearly as good at it as my father. My dad was a musical prodigy as a kid, and he plays piano by ear. We're not talking simple melodies but Beethoven and other grandiose pieces. He also has perfect pitch, which he passed on to my brother but not to me. Rats. (As an aside, it was also ridiculous as a kid to hear my dad and brother constantly being uncomfortable during performances because someone was inevitably out of tune. They can't help it, but man...) However, several of my band teachers used to tune the rest of the band to me because I was nearly always in tune. One of them claimed I was better than a machine at one point. Also, I once owned a clarinet that everyone else had trouble tuning but I always played in tune. Actually, I'm still not quite sure how to tune my instrument because of that. Haha.

Other instruments I have dabbled with are ukelele, recorder, and bass guitar. I don't really count the first two as instruments I've played, though, because we had to learn them in school. As for bass guitar, I tried to teach it to myself a couple of years ago because I've always been really interested in it (yeah, yeah, shut up), but I lost interest/didn't have time to be serious about it/got lazy/other crap came up. (Well, it helped that my ex loaned me the bass guitar, and the first time we broke up, I had him take the guitar with him. Musicians. What can I say?)

Funny. This has been on my mind a fair amount. I've been meaning to get back into playing because I have a really nice instrument (made of exotic wood even!) but not a lot of time. I really don't want to lose the skill even though I'm out of practice and it's fairly useless in the grand scheme of things. That's never stopped me before, though. Perhaps after this deadline (which has been moved to Thursday, gag!) has passed, I'll be able to get back into it and annoy the hell out of my neighbors. I'm sure I don't do that already with how much I sing in the shower. And while vacuuming? Ha.

Well, there's more than you ever wanted to know about my musical history. That was fun.
howeverbrief: (Skull)
I took a walk this morning because I'm getting tired of not being able to exercise. (This was in spite of trying to lift weights yesterday then trying to clean the floor after I got back from work, which completely wiped me out.) Even though I took an easier route (meaning the mile and a half one rather than the 3-mile one), I ended up coughing and sneezing most of the way because I somehow forgot I also have allergies on top of being sick still. Now I don't want to do anything even though I really ought to try to finish what I started last night. This cold is the worst thing ever.

I had a long rambly dream about college last night. It mostly involved talking to a large group of friends while walking on campus and being annoyed by an old boyfriend who kept popping up everywhere. Why he keeps showing up in my dreams, I'll probably never know. I kept feeling like I was forgetting something; and when we were walking to class, I realized I wasn't carrying my notes or anything to write with; so I had to run back to a large, dark hall filled with other students I didn't know to grab a folder only to remember that I also needed my notebook and I would have to run and get that too, which meant I would be late for class and probably end up sitting next to my ex the whole time. I woke up in the midst of running and cursing myself for not being able to run faster.

I've never liked being late. Throughout my childhood, my mom was perpetually late to things, especially church. I don't blame her because she had a lot on her plate having four children in the span of five years and running the hotel/casino business at the same time, but it still drove me crazy to walk in when an event had already started. I hate making other people wait for me. It goes along with not enjoying being the center of attention or being called out for things I can't do much about. I usually try to get everywhere I need to be with five or ten minutes to spare, though it doesn't always work. I really only have to worry about being late to work, and it helps that I live really close, though the earlier I have to get up, the slower I seem to move. 6:00 is still not agreeing with me, but whatever. You get used to it.

This is one of the reasons I think I can never really sleep well the night before I have to go back to work. I end up having panicky dreams that I'm late and missed my alarm or turned it off or something, so I wake up multiple times with racing thoughts and am barely able to go back to sleep before my alarm actually goes off. I always seem to start the week this way, which sucks. I have no idea how to make it stop.

Somehow I'm still tired despite actually sleeping the whole night. Grand. Guess I'll figure it out.

I'm a sap.

Aug. 27th, 2011 10:46 pm
howeverbrief: (Black)
Paper journal has been getting more of a workout lately. Here's the slightly edited entry from early this morning--Dream from the other night )

I'm rather tired. I don't know why I'm up so late other than I can be. I have a lot I should do tomorrow, but since I finally finished another deposition summary for my aunt and don't have any more (yet), I'm feeling semi-unmotivated already. I've been working on those on top of working full-time for the last three weeks, and it's wearing me out a little bit. We're also going to voluntary 10-hour days, which is okay but I'm still not looking forward to it. I think I've just been overworking myself a little but lately, even if other people do more than I do. Hell, it's still not easy. Whatever.

My complexes about work aside, I'm not sure I have much to say. My brain is pulling weird crap together while I'm asleep, and I've been sleeping too little to begin with. I need to remedy that somehow. Rest is good. We'll see if I can get it without feeling guilty.


And the few things I have to add--

I haven't mentioned this yet. My friend John visited earlier this week, so we had lunch (well, I had french toast, so it was more like brunch for me) where I also met his husband. I didn't think this would happen considering they live in Spain. His husband doesn't speak any English, so it was a mad translating session, but it seemed to go all right. It was pretty crazy at the same time, though. I haven't seen him in such a long time. Though the time was very short, it reminded me of the summer I was single and we palled around for a few weeks watching movies, eating hamburgers late at night, and talking under the stars. That was many years ago now.

My parents passed through town today, so I tagged along. They were driving to Reno to go to a spaghetti dinner benefit for my dad's friend who is slowly dying of cancer. Dad talked about how his friend had bladder cancer then received a new bladder, but now it's in his pancreas or liver or something. His friend was on chemo, but the doctors took him off of it because they said he might as well have a better quality of life for the time he has left. My dad turned to me as we were leaving and said, "I think he's younger than I am." Freaking heartbreaking.

Coming out of the grocery store, I saw a man in a motorized wheelchair holding a cardboard sign that read, "Vet. Disabled. Please help." My cynical side thought he'd use any money he got on booze. My sappy side thought he looked really sad sitting in the sun outside the Jack in the Box. My sappy side won.
howeverbrief: (Black)
So last night's dream setup wasn't important-- some convoluted plot about about planning a fancy party that involved me getting back together with you somehow. During the formal (and stuffy) dinner, you wore a tuxedo and glared at the food as it was served, refusing to look at me.

We escaped with my sister, another guest. As we burst into the cool night air, we surveyed the various statues in the long fountain outside the venue. I laughed and said one looked like Boba Fett from far away.

As we walked closer to the statue, you gasped. "You said this looked like Boba Fett? This is Poseidon! He's a skull-crusher!" Even with the breeze and fountain spray, your pleased expression made me feel warm and happy all over.

You again in my dreams after all this time. Always you. Why?


Dec. 24th, 2008 11:54 am
howeverbrief: (Ink)
My mother told me when I was younger that I shouldn't lose my virginity before marriage because I would be giving a part of myself to that person that I could never get back. This idea returned to me yesterday as I bought braided string cheese, of all things. Read more... )
howeverbrief: (Default)
Every once in a while, I go through my entries and add new tags. I'm not finished with this current round, but I found myself reading my own entries and thinking, "What an asshole!" about certain people, sometimes including myself. I don't know why I stayed in certain relationships so long, but I do know why I flew off the handle so easily in others. I don't know why I said such terrible things at times, but I do know why I acted foolish and why certain names just bring anger while others leave me cold. There's so much locked up that isn't flattering. I'm not going to deny that.

I can't take it back, OK? I can't help who I've been and what that lead me to do.

I am certain of a few things, though: I tried my best; I'm glad you came into my life; and I'm glad the rest of you have stayed. I'm so incredibly lucky I can't stand it.
howeverbrief: (Black)
Tonight in my investigations class, the topic was domestic violence. I could not help the flashbacks to four years ago-- the fear, the confusion, the extreme lengths people go to.

Read more... )

It took a long time, but she finally got out.

Fast forward, I talked with my mom today, and she said Katie is doing well. In fact, she might be moving up in one of her jobs, and a review for her other job where she's the pastry chef placed CAV in the top 100 restaurants in San Fransisco and called her desserts "startlingly delicious." Pretty good, eh? I'm glad she's starting to come into her own and perhaps she'll get past this "paying her dues" phase she's been stuck in forever.

I guess... I'm just really proud of how far she has come. I'm glad she made it through all this alive. I hope that her earlier experiences haven't hurt her too much. And always I pray that Brian has moved his big, bad self on.


howeverbrief: (Default)

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