Tag Archives: psychology

The Key to a Healthy Relationship is More Relationships – 1 of 2

Back in December I had turned down a couple of tours for the first quarter of this year.  One of them because the band’s manager is the most hated man I have ever met and I will absolutely never be associated with him ever again.  The second one because they weren’t offering enough money and it was for a support band on a five band tour package… and I’m a snob.  I very much prefer working for the headlining band, or co-headlining band because it’s a lot less of a headache.  I knew that by turning down these gigs, it would mean that I would be home for a while and the thought of that usually makes my vagina shrivel.  I was expecting the Post Tour Blues to kick my ass immediately.  I was not in a great place because I had just left the Viking for a second time; a true modern romantic tragedy that I may tell someday.  And I also was expecting to come home and be with a certain boy, but life doesn’t give a fuck about your plans, so that didn’t end up working out.  I thought I would spiral into a major depression and then jump at the first opportunity to runaway and onto a bus with a rock band and drown in immediate gratification, new faces to make me forget the old ones, and lots of whiskey.

What actually happened though, was that I was okay.  I’ve been home for a while and surprisingly, I’m good.  My demons must be tired from years of antagonizing because they are laying dormant right now.  My sister and I signed up at a boxing gym, and I think that helped a lot.  We decided that we wanted to be badass boxers, so I dived into that.  Don’t piss me off because I can hit you with a one, two and it will hurt.  Definitely don’t piss my sister off because she is diligently looking for any reason to hit someone with a solid one, two, hook.  In that spot of one’s soul that we keep hidden, I have love and empathy and Raven has rage and violence.  I’m waiting for the phone call from her in the middle of the night telling me that she killed someone with her barehands and needs help cleaning up.  I’m kidding.  But she seriously can’t wait to knock a mother fucker out.

Another reason why I think I’m okay, is that a lot of my human desires are being met, through a kind of routine that I developed.  I never thought that I would use the word routine without rolling my eyes and throwing up in my mouth a little bit, but look at me now!  All grown up!  Well, I can’t get too carried away.  I still get very excited when I come in contact with a bouncy ball, and I still play in the rain and giggle when I see a penis drawing.  My routines are not lame, which is what is saving me.

A long time ago I watched a Ted Talk by Esther Perel about the secret to desire in a long-term relationship.  Firstly, if you don’t watch Ted Talk’s, you’re being dumb.  That talk is one that has always stuck with me and I recommend it to everyone, even if you’re not in a relationship.  Clearly, most of my life I have not been, but I still took a lot from this lecture.  Her thesis statement is that around the globe, where romance enters, there seems to be a crisis of desire.  I will paraphrase.  In modern day relationships, we except our partner to provide all of our needs and wants for us.  Back when marriage was an economic institution, what was expected was children, social statures and companionship.  Now, we expect all that from our partner, but ALSO for him or her to be our “best friend, trusted confidant and passionate lover and we live twice as long.”  When you think about it like that, it’s really ridiculous.

She goes on to say that as humans, we seek security, dependability, and permanence but we ALSO seek adventure, risk and spontaneity.  For some retarded reason, we have grown to expect ONE person to provide all of that for us, when until modern society, it was an entire village which provided those needs for one another.  This lecture of course led to some introspection, and I started becoming aware of all of our “roles.”  No matter what type of relationship you have with someone, you play a role in their lives that in some way meets at least one of the human desires.  For example, Fat Face for a while satisfied my adventurous, spontaneous side, but didn’t meet my innate desire for security and dependability.  I had to get that from someone else.  This confirms for me my theory that it is very healthy and 100% necessary to maintain friendships with the opposite sex (or sex of your choice) when in a relationship.  It’s plain dumb to think that one person can satisfy all of your desires when taking into consideration the grand spectrum of desires.  So, after watching the Esther Perel talk again, I recognized that all of the people currently in my life, play a different role so that my desires are met, which leads to health and happiness.  Like she said in the lecture, a small village once provided all of these things, so this is my small village.  The friends and family and lovers who meet my needs and are helping making this weird life less painful and sometimes down right beautiful.

I’ll start with Rach.  Rachel is my age, but married with three children and doesn’t drink at all.  Basically, we could not have more polarizing lives unless she was a Sudanese woman married with three children and malaria.  However, her and her whole family meets my kind of family, “wholesome” desires.  Each time I leave them, I feel so uplifted and just- – I don’t know… wholesome!  I have become this weird extra appendage to her family.  Think of when people have an extra finger or toe… that’s me.  I’m the strange extra flab of questionable skin to the Holm family.

Rachel thinks that my life is so interesting, but I think her life is so interesting.  She has a cat named Jeff for crying out loud.  I think that is hysterical.  And she has an adorable little four year old girl named Matt.  Okay… her name is Mattie, but I call her Matt because I’m a twat and just find it funny.  When all of us go out to eat or do something, her and her husband fight over which one is going to be on “Mattie duty.”  They’re serious about it, but I just giggle at the side and play soccer with the son using a wadded up piece of paper.  Once we are settled, Rach, me and her husband attempt to use code words and gestures to discuss adult matters such as, what it means that a guy I was dating couldn’t get it up… and how much they do or do not make-out as a form of foreplay.  We manage to have full blown conversations about this while Matt is singing “up  town funk you up” to herself, the boy is coloring and the oldest girl is playing with my bracelets.

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Me and the fam.

Rachel and I have known each other since we were six years old, and we were very close from then, and all the way through high school.  After high school we drifted apart for a while and I think during those years, our differences kept us apart.  Now, I think it is our differences that seemed to have brought us back together.  When you’re someone like me, who is constantly going through an existential crisis and sometimes can’t remember if I may or may not have made-out with two different boys in the same night, it’s good to have people like Rachel around to hear about how they need to bake 300 cookies in one day (for reasons I still don’t understand) and how her kids all play Bloody Mary together in the bathroom.  Seeing Rach and her family has become routine, and the role that they play in my life is getting doses of wholesomeness and innocence that I don’t get regularly from anyone else.  Another integral role that Rachy plays in my life is that she encourages me when I think it’s a good idea to buy a floppy hat and sparkly fake glasses.

On this same vein, there is Cody.  I never thought that I would be watching movies in my living room on a shitty television and ordering shitty pizza with Cody again.  Just like Rachel, I thought that our best days were behind us.  We have been extremely close since age 14, but after a few years of not living in the same area (during our mid twenties) and having very different lives, I figured that we would just continue growing apart until we both realized that the only reason why we were pretending to be friends still was out of some morbid obligation we thought we owed to our former selves.  Close to a year ago though, something changed (including proximity) and I remember announcing to my sister, “Cody is cool again!!!”

Him and I have been hanging out fairly regularly since and it has been my favorite thing.  We have nacho night about once a week which simply includes making nachos, drinking PBR and watching stupid youtube videos.  We also play pool occasionally though we never seem to get better, we watch movies, we talk about writing movies, he tells me about albino snakes and I tell him about books I’m reading and we laugh over the things that we used to get pissed at each other about when we were young and in love.

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Cody and I.

Cody satisfies my desire to talk, and also to be 100% comfortable with someone else.  We talk about all of it.  It’s great to have someone who you can discuss the psychological effects of the technological boom with, but also turn around and laugh about how weird nipples are and if we would rather fuck Fiona Apple or Alanis Morrisette.  Laughter is the most integral to life, so include as much people as you can who make you laugh.  It’s also important to have someone who you can be 100% real around.  Maybe a lot of people get that from their significant other, but that has never been me.  Right now, I’m getting that from Cody and my sister and realizing how important it is to have that in your life.  We all need at least one person who we can be completely unimpressive around and don’t give a fuck if we have sweaty armpits or if we just feel like eating a lot of Taco Bell and not being judged.  What I’ve learned the most through this resurrection friendship with Cody is that sometimes, you can go home again.  That’s part of his role, he provides me with a sense of home and comfort and it helps keep me grounded.

My sister, Raven.  I’m living at home again, and that means spending more time with Flava’ Rave, as Cody calls her.  She is just so funny because she is a paradigm for her generation.  My morning routine seems to be, make coffee, then talk and laugh with Raven for about an hour and a half before we contemplate what we are doing with our day.  Considering how far apart we are in age, Raven and I are very close.  She’s nine years my junior, but I can still talk to her about A LOT.  She’s a total B though too, and if she is getting slightly annoyed with me, she’ll just put her hand up and say, “bye.”  It makes me laugh every time.  She actually just left the room and we both were cracking up because she is being so NOT chill about a current crush she has.  We honestly just spent 15 minutes deciding on the exact words and punctuation to use in a two sentence text to her crush.  In this role, I think it’s more about what role I am playing.  I’m her big sister and providing that role for her, provides me with a small sense of purpose which we all need.  I am there for her in every sense of that “you’re my blood” type of way.  Essentially, she can do no wrong and no matter what, I got her back.  That unconditional love should absolutely be in everyone’s routine.

To be continued…  Part 2

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Raven and I.

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The Boy I Never Kissed

I was a make-out whore for a good portion of my life.  When I was younger, I had it in my head that if you wanted to kiss someone, then you should.  That simple.  It didn’t matter if they had a girlfriend or if it would complicate our friendship or if it was pointless because it was just some random person and I knew that it wouldn’t amount to anything.  Those factors didn’t matter to me back then because I was very much living in the moment and kind of a free spirit (as fucking lame as that sounds, good lord).  If right then, it felt right, then it was right.  Due to this naive thought process, I’ve kissed a lot of boys in my past, but unfortunately, Frankie is not one of them.  I’ve calmed down on my love affair with the world since those days by the way.

Before I get to my main point, I’d like to note that one of my favorite things about being an adult is that I no longer want other peoples boyfriends and have also found that it is completely possible to have good guy friends who are just friends.  That was hard during high school and college when I didn’t give a shit if the boy I had a crush on had a girlfriend, and didn’t give a shit if kissing him now would lead to complications tomorrow.  I would still pursue him.  That’s called being an asshole.  Now, if I know that a guy is in a relationship, I don’t even a little bit think of him as an option; I immediately lose romantic interest.  It feels great.  It basically eliminates most of my male peers, so I’ve got less to try to juggle and manage.

I have very few regrets in life.  My main regret is that I stopped dancing, and another one is that I never kissed Frankie.  I’m morbid and weird and don’t have as much sympathy for the dead as most people do.  So what I am about to say, I’m not saying because he is dead and we tend to over romanticize the dead, I am saying it because it is true…  Frankie felt innocent.

There is a brilliant one act play by Tennessee Williams called “Mister Paradise.”  A young, enthusiastic girl finds an old, washed up writer that no one ever cared about, and wants to show him to the world.  At the end, she is leaving after their first and last meeting and says, “Won’t you kiss me goodbye?”  Mister Paradise says no, and when she asks why he says, “For the same reason I wouldn’t touch a clean white table cloth with mud all over my fingers.”

It’s brilliant.  I think that’s why I never kissed Frankie.  There were times when I wanted to, but I refrained because he was the clean white table cloth and I was the one with mud all over my fingers.  I still really miss him and I wish that he was around so that we could make giant bowls of macaroni and cheese with hotdogs and then listen to punk rock music on the floor of my bedroom together.

There were so many completely forgettable guys that I wasted kisses on, and I wish that I could turn all of those in like the tickets at an arcade, and exchange them for just one kiss with Frankie.  Why is it that we often end up NOT kissing or sleeping with the people that actually matter, and instead, end up on top of Joe Shmoe?

I went to high school with Frankie.  He was a grade below me and died a couple of years after he had graduated high school.  I should remember the exact date, but I don’t.  It was sometime around Thanksgiving of what I am guessing was 2007, but I could be wrong.  Sometimes I feel like a jerk for not remembering the exact date, but then the cold wind blows and I remember that the date doesn’t matter.

Cody was the one who told me.  I was away at college and got a phone call from Cody just as I was about to walk into my Lighting and Field class in Savannah, Georgia; 400 miles away from him and Frankie.  Ironically, I’ll never forget when Cody said, “Do you remember Frankie?”  I kind of laughed and was insulted and said, “Frankie Bentley?  Yeah, of course I do.”  I drove him home from school everyday and he was my date to one of my senior high school dances and we got together almost every time that I was in town, so of course I know Frankie, you dick.  As I stood in the hallway, Cody went on to tell me that Frankie had been killed.  He was hit by a car while on his bicycle, riding to the beach.

That night, I had work.  I always rode my bike to work, and on this particular night, it was cold and I didn’t bring a jacket.  Being a Floridian, I had been a pussy about cold weather my whole life.  Frankie is what changed me.  I rode home that night, and I was freezing but I remember thinking something like, Frankie went through death, so you can at least get through the cold.  And I did.  That has always stuck with me.  I have worked a lot during winter tours up in Canada, so I know what it is like to be in REAL cold, not Florida cold.  Anytime I am about to think, shit, I am cold, I just think about Frankie.  It’s a weird association, I know.  But whatever fucked up psychological reason it is, it helps me.  It reminds me that being cold is nothing.  All it does is make you cold and other people are taking on a lot worse.  At least you’re alive to feel it.

I’m currently up North, and sitting outside right now and the cold wind is starting to penetrate my jacket.  The wind is what kills me.  But tonight, I’m embracing the wind.  It kind of feels like Frankie is in my bones.  I think if souls turned into elements, Frankie would be wind.

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Post Tour Blues – Report 1 of 2

I have been home for a while now, and I feel that I am FINALLY getting over my Post Tour Blues.  I am starting to make more friends, enjoy my little routines and flirting with the idea of trying to start a garden.  Don’t get me wrong, I cannot friggen wait to get back on the road, but I am enjoying NOT going stir crazy at the moment.  I leave again soon though, and will be traveling for three months, and I am very stoked about that, but I am already dreading the Post Tour Blues that I will be sure to experience upon my return in late November.

There are many reasons why us roadies get the Post Tour Blues as I call it (or PTB).  A lot of the symptoms are due to the sudden change in lifestyle.  The easiest, most concise way to describe it, is that we go from 60 to zero in only a few minutes.  The amount of time that it takes to walk off of the bus and into the airport terminal that will be delivering you home.

I go from being in a new city every day and being at a live, loud, adrenaline pumping rock show every night,  to sitting on my mom’s couch watching her make carrot juice and hearing about the family of rabbits that are hopping around the neighborhood.  Touring can be a lot of fucking fun, and everything I deal with on a daily basis is so over the top that it can sometimes make normal life feel mundane.  Another factor in the cause of Post Tour Blues.

Also, you go from having a very specific, functional purpose, to no purpose at all.  Each person on the tour is essential and provides a specific job that makes the entire tour function.  You know exactly what is required of you and there is a sense of satisfaction at the end of the day.  Then you go home and you have no role and no sense of purpose, and those questions like, “what am I doing with my life?” start haunting you.  I just happened to have the month off during the 2014 World Cup.  I am not kidding when I tell you that I spent the entire month alone in a bar, drinking beer and watching soccer.  I had a great time, but honestly, in that month, there was just no purpose to my existence.

This brings me to my next point, which is often, I tend to isolate myself post tour.  I know that I probably shouldn’t, because it only enhances the blues, but I know that a lot of other touring folk do this as well.  I’ve speculated on some of the reasons why this is.  One I believe, is that it does become harder to relate to people who live a more stable lifestyle.  Your cares, concerns and experiences, the things that you talk about, are radically different.  It’s not that one way of life is superior to the other, it’s just different, and I get self-conscious sometimes about the topics of conversation that I would probably bring up.  I’m sitting there discussing how I can’t remember if I accidentally drunkenly kissed the guitar tech, how a goth with metal spikes coming from his head stalked me all night, trying to get access on to the bus, and how I’m thinking about dreadlocking my hair just so that I don’t have to deal with hair maintenance on the road.  The stable friend is discussing how their kid likes playing with a broken piece of a picture frame rather than their toys, how the contractor put in the wrong tile in their kitchen and how they may get an office promotion.  Neither is right or wrong, just different and I know that I am the more abnormal one; the minority, so it sometimes makes me self-conscious and I just avoid that type of interaction.  There are of course certain close friends that you don’t have to worry about this type of thing with, thank goodness for them.

Being alone often after tour is mostly self-induced, but not always.  Your friends and family have their own lives without you because they have become accustom to you not being around.  So when they don’t call you to invite you out for their traditional Saturday afternoon Bloody Mary’s at the nearby beach bar, it’s not because they don’t want you there, it’s just that they have grown into the habit of not calling because you’re often not in town.  I sometimes feel very alone after a tour, which leads to PTB.

Romantic relationships are fucked.  To the point where I don’t even have the emotional stamina to get into that right now.  I think it’s obvious how touring puts a major strain on any type of relationship, but especially romantic ones, so hopefully you can use your imagination and forgive me for skipping over the dirty details right now.  Maybe down the road… probably when I am suffering through another episode of PTB, I may be in the mood to drink a bottle of whiskey and dredge through painful memories.

When you’re on the road, it’s easy to distract yourself from the thoughts of your personal life back home being annihilate because there is constant new stimulus.  Once you are back home though, you’re forced to confront all of the things that you have been putting off during your tour and it hits you in the stomach, knocking the wind out of you.

Finally being able to have some damn privacy once you get home is very nice and so you feel the compulsion to take advantage of that and get as much privacy as you can soak up.  This ultimately leads to the loneliness as well.   I will get to bus privacy in the 2nd report.

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Emotional Suppression is Such an Annoying First World Problem

As much as I blabber on this blog with my random musings and drunk stories that don’t mean anything, I tend to have a difficult time blabbing about my feelings in real life. (Caitlin rule: social media is not real life). Even writing “talking about my feelings,” just made me cringe because to me, it sounds narcissistic and privileged. Maybe I just read the news too much and compare myself too heavily to the people on BBC reports who have real problems. If I have food, clothing and shelter, then I feel I should keep my damn mouth shut and not complain about anything. I’m alive, I am not persecuted for my religion (or lack there of), I have friends and family, I have running water, my health and a car that has friggen built in seat warmers. A lot of the world is in fear of their lives due to their religious beliefs, contracting TB is as common as getting the sniffles, they need to chop wood to create heat and they walk to the nearest well to retrieve water using pots and pans. So no, I’ll spare the world of my American girl sob story because I don’t want to add to the delusions of what it’s like NOT to have real problems.

The older I get, the more I learn, the more I travel, the more people I meet, the more disgusted I become with the First World. I think that one characteristic of First World society is indulgence. We are a bunch of fat fucks who think that it is acceptable to stuff ourselves just because it’s taco Tuesday, gamble our money away just for the adrenaline, drink like Armaggedon is upon us just because it’s happy hour and buy big diamonds just because it shows status. I am the first to admit, I am a culprit of certain indulgences as I’m sure most of you are very aware. These extravagances are a way for us to stay stimulated. This constant need for stimulus (which I am 100% guilty of) is a product of our First World problem; that we take our survival for granted and have too much damn time on our hands for self-analyzing and worrying about trivial matters such as not being able to connect to wifi at our nearby coffee shop. Even in the second world, eating is still a thing that requires some work. Not only do they work for their food, figuratively speaking because they work to be able to purchase food (the way that most of us do), but a lot of them also sweat for their food. They garden and raise goats and slaughter their chickens themselves and have to worry about droughts and too much rain because maybe with a lot of rain some of their crops will drown, but they can’t drive to the market during bad weather because the roads get flooded and close. These motherfuckers do not have time to worry about what it means to have “daddy issues” because they have real shit to deal with, which gives them a sense of purpose and fulfillment.

I was in the cereal aisle the other day, and became so grossed out with myself. I was a little bit chilly even though it was 90 degrees (32 degrees Celsius) outside, but the giant supermarket I am in is fully air conditioned and there I was under the giant florescent lights, looking at the entire row of at least 300 choices of cereal. I was getting panicky because I was trying to figure out the cereal with the lowest calorie to sugar ratio, but knew that I had to hurry because I still needed to call my car insurance company before 5:00 and was also worried about a boy I like and what I should text him back. Jesus Christ. I wanted to punch myself in the stomach. If I had to make my damn cereal myself, I wouldn’t be getting panicky about my First World problems because I would be too busy studying weather patterns to make sure that I plant the grain at the proper time of season.

I love working with my hands, and having a job that makes me sweat. I have noticed that the people I know who do some type of manual labor for a living, seem to have the most sense of satisfaction. With all this technology, the manual labor jobs are dwindling, and our feelings of contentment are going right down the drain with them. With this void, we feel the need to fill that with self-indulgences. Indulging is or desperate attempt to make ourselves happier when our lives don’t really fulfill us. There is a bill for indulgences, and it feels like our society is becoming late in payment.

I’m hoping that you all understand that I’m not talking about ordering dessert when I say over indulging. I’m discussing an overall lifestyle. In our lifestyle, we seem to take more than we need and most of us think nothing of it; don’t even realize it as we wash the dishes under constant running water.

If everyone only took what resources they really NEEDED, think about what a better world we’d be in. Really, please think about it for at least sixty seconds.

We are a bunch of selfish twats who would rather live blindly and gluttonous than unite and help a brother out. I know that this sounds harsh, but I think that something really went wrong with our species. No other species on Earth sabotages each other. We think that we are on top, but we are at the bottom. We think that the world needs to adjust to us, but we need to wake the fuck up and adjust to the world. My wise Dad made a good point a while back, and I’ve found myself thinking about it more recently. He said that humans are absolutely at the bottom of the food chain. We consider ourselves at the top… why? Because we have opposable thumbs and can kill everything else? If humans ceased to exist, the Earth wold THRIVE. However, if something like plankton, or bees, which are considered at the bottom of the food chain, ceased to exist, the entire goddamn world would cease to exist.

If you have gotten this far, then I thank you for listening to my rant. My initial point is, that with all of that floating around in my mind, it has made balancing awareness and my everyday life tricky. I come from a First World country, so obviously I have adapted to such, but being aware of my status has presented its problems concerning my mental well being. I don’t want to talk about how I’m feeling, but when I don’t, it makes it worse because I’m suppressing. However, when I do talk, it also makes it worse because I feel like a dick for even complaining. A vicious cycle. Life would be so much easier if I was an ignorant redneck.

Due to my unwillingness to open my mouth (a guy I saw for a short amount of time in college called me, Lipless because I never said what I was thinking), I have damaged quite a few of my relationships. I say “relationships” because that’s the easiest go-to description, but they weren’t relationships and that’s mostly because I’m an asshole. Also though, because I don’t often “share” because I feel ridiculous for even letting my demons get to me.

I was “feelin’ it” recently (as Michael would say), which basically means that you’re drowning in your demons, and I honestly considered just completely ending communication with this certain boy that I like. No word, nothing. I guess I was feeling overwhelmed and that seemed like the only component that I could eradicate. That’s something that I probably would have done in the past because running is always easier than confronting, but I’ve changed and instead, checked myself, and did manage to talk to him about some of my gross feelings that I was so annoyed that I even had. But I’m glad I did, he made me feel better.

We need to find a median. Somehow, I need to figure out a way to deal with my emotions but also continue to keep things in perspective. I recognize what I need to work on, but we all need to recognize that as a society, we need to change and that we have sold our soul in exchange for late night Taco Bell raids.

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Confessions of a Heedless Sinner – Vol. 13

The curse of the ex.  Why are we drawn to them?  There are reasons why it didn’t work, yet for some deep-seated cause, we all find ourselves in the arms of an ex at 3:00 in the morning with Portishead playing off of an iPod and a fat fan clicking in the background.  Is it just me?  Or do all boys have a portable fan in their room that they keep on high which clicks like a clock… a symbol of the relationship’s impending doom.  My first love called his fan “fat fan” and the name stuck.  Anyway, even when every fiber of our being knows that agreeing to “catch up” with an ex is a bad idea, we do it anyway.  Are we all plagued with masochistic tendencies or is it the need for acceptance?  I think it’s both.  We want to feel wanted, even if it means hurting ourselves.  Or it means that multiple cocktails were involved.

When people ask me if I’m seeing anyone, I am generally vague, because I’m just generally vague about everything.  I relate to writer’s (I feel cheated by the universe that I was not living at a time and place when I could have been best friends with Graham Greene) and with that being said, I think that writer’s like writing because they don’t like talking.  I enjoy blogging about my insignificant life because I don’t exactly like talking about it, nor do I expect anyone to care about any story that I have to tell.  If I write it down, the reader can opt out without feeling rude.  A listener, cannot do that quite as easily.  Audible conversation is riddled with obligations and forced politeness.  If my reader’s don’t care about what I am saying, they can close this tab and google “how to survive a bear attack” instead, (a search I recently did because I was in Canada for a tour and felt that I should be prepared) and not feel like they’re being rude.  I digress.  So, when people ask me if I am seeing anyone, my go-to response is, “there are usually boys but it’s not usually serious.”  I appreciate conciseness and brevity in conversation, and that is the most concise and brief way to describe my typical love life.

However, not too too long ago, I did find myself in what I suppose would be called a relationship.  I hadn’t tried that out in a while and so I guess it just seemed like a fun experiment.  I should have known it would end in disaster because I am not stable enough for one of those, nor mature enough to be performing social experiments.

One of the things that first excited me about this boy, who we will call the boy with the white hair, was that I found myself physically attracted to him.  I wanted him.  This was a feeling I am unfamiliar with since losing my battle to uncomfortable numbness a couple of years back.  Before that, I used to love everyone.  Every boy I ever met I would find something attractive about him.  This was a blessing and a curse.  A blessing because I was so loving.  I truly did care for all of these people and I would have done anything for them.  I have known some beautiful human beings and I am so fortunate and appreciative of the souls that have crossed my fucked up path.  It was a curse for the same reasons.  I loved everyone.  I was incapable of having a healthy relationship because I was having a love affair with the world.  I spread myself out too thin.  My tragic flaw was the romance in all that I saw.

Around the age of 25 I did a complete 180 and I don’t know why or when this exactly happened.  I know that part of it at least was because I let Los Angeles get the best of me.  When you move so far away from home, to a city like that, where you know NO ONE, it is easy to lose yourself.  Somewhere out there, probably buried under the construction on the 405, is my soul.  One of my first jobs in LA was as an  assistant to this Persian fucker who needed help with tutoring his kids and keeping his desk organized.  A nanny basically.  During my first week, he hit on me.  I don’t want to go into details, but I remember feeling like such a little girl. A victim.  Like a child who had been violated, but I was 25 years old.  Yes, that is young, but it is not “little girl” young.  I remember I called my 911, which is my best friend Lance, and I said out loud to him, “I don’t understand why men think it’s okay to touch you when you don’t want them to.”

I felt like Jem from To Kill a Mockingbird, when he discovers the evils of the world and realizes why Boo Radley stays shut up in that old house.  That is the last time I can remember feeling that way.  Since then, I feel almost nothing for anyone.  I feel like an adult now, not a little girl.  I meet boys.  I meet a lot of wonderful, beautiful boys… but they don’t usually cause me feel.  I will be into someone, and enjoy their company, but then when it comes to the point where I feel like a kiss would be appropriate, I’m indifferent about it.  Indifferent about them. I missed that feeling of dying to kiss someone.

The boy with the white hair was the first boy in a very long time that I really wanted to kiss.  We were seeing each other for a couple of months (which in Caitlin world, is a long time), and it was getting to the point where I thought I might fall in love with him… or him me.  That’s the direction we were going.  Literally over night however, I realized that I wasn’t going to.  I wasn’t going to fall in love with him.  Which, I don’t know why the fuck not.  He is intriguing, he is nice in all of the right ways, he has his shit together, he is hot and he has good taste in music.

It was the day after Valentine’s day.  We had just spent the prior evening together with his friends at a music festival and something was just not right.  I have no doubt in my mind that this “feeling of not being right” was 100% my fault, but regardless, the feeling was there.  Him and I stayed in a hotel room that night because we were a little bit of a drive away from home and had been drinking, so a hotel seemed like a good idea.  The festival that we had attended I was actually working for.  Not anything serious, I was just acting as a runner for them.  So in the morning, I left while the boy with the white hair was still in bed, to go run a quick errand for the festival, (it was a two-day festival) knowing that I would be back before he got out of bed.

I don’t know what the fuck came over me, but as I was driving over the Bayshore Bridge with the morning sun blinding me and Band of Horses playing over the radio, I just knew that him and I weren’t going to last.  Or that I couldn’t last. If you had asked me two days prior to that, I would have told you that we were going in the direction of a serious relationship and would have been happy about that.

I fucking blow chunks at break-ups.  I accept this and in the past have suffered through months of lying and denial to avoid breaking up with a boyfriend.  I don’t want to be like that anymore.  I have learned from my mistakes and am now on more of a tell the truth even if it hurts, kick.  I am trying to be unapologetically honest.  So I got back to the hotel and had a moment of courage that I felt I should take advantage of.  It was the worst idea I’ve ever had.  I proceeded to wake up the boy with the white hair to break up with him.  Who the fuck does that?  I woke him up so that I could break up with him in a hotel room with our garments sprawled all over the goddamn place like a bad Lifetime movie.

I didn’t want to waste any more of his time.  He was so good and he deserved someone who was going to do it with him, be there with him, wholly.  I was just not capable of being that person, so I quickly decided that each passing second that I remained with him, was unfair to him.

I first hugged him, then sobbed, telling him that I, “couldn’t do this,” like a typical girl that you want to punch.  He is very much a “man’s man” and tries camouflaging all feelings,  so he pretty much just said, “okay.”  I appreciated the brevity.

Here is where the part comes in that I seriously did not think it through.  We weren’t packed!  So we had to pack up all of our stuff in awkward silence and then take that uncomfortable elevator ride to the lobby in more silence together with the smooth jazz version of “Bridge Over Troubled Water” playing over the elevator speakers.  Thank God we did not drive together or else I probably would have tried to order a shotgun from room service so that I could blow my brains out.

That was one awful morning.

And here I am.  Another morning.  I’m waking up after a night of, “let’s catch up,” to him still asleep while I scavenge the area in the grey, dawn light, searching for my bra that I seriously don’t want to leave behind because I rarely wear bras so it’s my only one.  I was planning on a quick escape but I am too much of a hot mess to pull that off.  I was missing a shoe.  What am I?  A fucking teen soap opera?!  He woke up, laughed at me and walked me to his bar (he owns a bar which is in walking distance to his apartment) at 7:00am while I was giggling at the entire situation and embracing this very unique walk of shame.  We found my shoe literally underneath the bar.  Jesus Christ.

I know this morning all too well of ex boyfriend’s, blood-shot eyes, disheveled hair and Diane Rehms of NPR telling me over my car radio as I drive home that, “Iraqi Kurdish fighters begin crossing from Turkey into Syria to fight against ISIS in Kobani,” to help remind myself that the Kurd’s have way more problems than I do.

Why are we drawn to ex’s?  All I have to show for it is a lost bra, a 7-11 coffee and a screenplay that I should be working on because my old professor is nagging me to finish it, but instead I am sitting here thinking about the boy with the white hair and how I might want to see him tomorrow night too.

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My Self-Righteous Solution

I just figured out what the problem is with my generation.  We are obsessed with television the way that the previous generation was obsessed with music.  We have HD televisions, inDemand, DVR, Netflix and all this bullshit that I can’t even, nor do I want to, keep up with.  This craze is how our parents were about music.  Well, the cool ones anyway.  They had PROPER speakers, nice record players, and followed bands obsessively the way that my peers follow Game of Thrones or the lives of the fucking Kardashian’s or the Hogan’s or whatever rich family is the flavor of the week.  It’s gross.  The former generation waited hours in lines to go to a concert and drove across state lines.  Now people do not go to live music events because they’re lazy and would rather spend the night watching The Walking Dead and then hashtaging about it on twitter.

One of my favorite past times is listening to music with my Dad.  I have OFTEN blew off my friends to hang out with my Dad at his house, drink rum and listen to The Beatles and Tears for Fears on his sweet stereo system.  You are simply not listening to music properly if you’re listening to it off of your fucking laptop or iPod or whatever mini device you have that will be out of date in four months.  When I was growing up, my Dad had floor speakers that stood a good two and a half feet tall, and I believe they were the same speakers he had had since ’75.  And my God, do they sound beautiful.

I was recently at my Dad’s house by myself and decided to put on one of my many CD’s.  While I am probably the youngest person I know who has a real CD collection, I only had a few handy because the hundreds of others were at my place.  I was stoked to discover that I did have a Sunny Day Real Estate album with me, so I put that in, and literally started laughing out loud all by myself when I heard the first note. It sounded so goddamn different from what I am used to that it was comical.  Jesus Christ I have been missing out.  I laid in the middle of the room, and let the vibrations of the bass coming from the floor penetrate my heartbeat, and I let the melody fill the room and devour all sense of time and space.  I think my life changed.  At least a little bit.  I’ve listened to music on these speakers plenty of times, but maybe because I was completely alone and feeling particularly susceptible, this time it was just different.

I left the room for a moment to grab my water which was in the living room where I had left the television on.  With the music in the background, it was now being poisoned by the sounds and images of some drama that was on cable.  In that moment, I was revolted by the TV.  I don’t own a TV, but I don’t have disdain for it either, I just prefer to not have one.  It makes me read more.  Anyway, in this moment, with the beautiful sounds behind me, and in front of me, bright colors and fiction discharging all over my face, I had a revelation.  My generation has it all wrong.  We don’t listen to music properly, and we’re not as die-hard for it as the children of the ’60s and ’70s and it is drowning us.

To further my self-righteous music rant, I truly believe that world peace could be obtained with a happy song.  If everyone in ISIS would just shut the fuck up and listen to “Tiny Dancer” things would get better.  During diplomatic discussions of drone warfare and economic stability, I think there should be a mandatory twenty-minute musical intermission every two hours.  You’re welcome, UN.

I know that I sound like a hipster right now, (which is something that I get made fun of daily by my tour manager who thinks that pumpkin patches are the demise of the society in the same way that big oil companies are), but I’m fine with that.  What did the hipster’s ever do except for bring us craft beer, great coffee, a mini revival of vinyl records, the expansion of Vice magazine and made it acceptable for me to wear fake glasses?

I just like this picture and it's one of my better iPhone photographs.  Wouldn't you rather be there than in front of the television?

I just like this picture and it’s one of my better iPhone photographs. Wouldn’t you rather be there than in front of the television?

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