Friday, November 20, 2009

thank you

This morning I got a package in the mail. It was a birthday present. I don't think I've ever gotten a birthday present in November (my birthday is in September), but it's wonderful: so much more surprising and exciting. I got a gorgeous hank of baby camel/silk fiber dyed a sort of beige-brown-rusty red-pink kind of color (trust me, it looks better than it sounds) and it's soft and fluffy and shiny and I had admired it in the shop in August while I was buying knitting needles with my 12 year old cousin, and he remembered and thought "Angie would like that for her birthday," and here it is. And the fact that he noticed and remembered feels like the sweetest thing in the whole world.

This afternoon, I added another place to the list of Places I Have Cried in Public. I was knitting at Home Ec. Workshop, and talking about how I was avoiding doing the work I needed to do, and Alisa asked me what it was I was stressed about. And just the thought of listing out what I needed to do left me in tears, because I am having a difficult time accepting this whole growing up thing I have to do, and I respond to stress by crying in inappropriate situations. And she listened and talked me through it and offered to help me with some of the things I need to do.

And I am thinking about how many people have been listening, and talking me through it, and being there when my meds aren't working, and sending me virtual hugs when I'm feeling isolated, and inviting me to communal work sessions in the Art Box so that getting work done doesn't feel so isolating. It amazes me, the support I have, even from people I don't know, who read my twitter posts and ask if I'm okay. I think I am even more amazed, though, of the support I get from people who do know me, who get the unfiltered versions of my panic attacks, who get every new shred of evidence I am analyzing while I decide if I should call Satanist Dan on Tuesday or Wednesday because I spend a lot of time thinking about things like that, and they're still here, part of my life, and supporting me through it.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Saturday, November 14, 2009


So I'm staying home by myself, and I feel lousy about it because I was holding tonight in front of me for days as my reward for being good, and it was going to help me get through the work I have to do tomorrow. I feel like I am budgeting my mental and emotional well-being like a physical resource: having fun Tuesday night and Wednesday morning to store up energy so Wednesday afternoon I can spend it on stressful, but necessary, work.

It's like, when people talk about losing weight, the first thing I tell them, is to find a way to be happy first. If it takes all you have to get through your day, there's nothing left to do anything else difficult, like refusing yourself ice cream when you get home. I measure out indulgences so that I have the willpower to do what I need to get done later.

When I started to write this, I was going to say something like:

I'm feeling lousy tonight and I can try to concentrate on being rational. I can give myself the little fixes that will keep me feeling okay, a little melancholy, but not terrible. Or I can just give in and indulge myself in self pity and let it all out and bawl myself to sleep. I kind of think I might be better at the end of it if I just let myself be as miserable as I feel like, and it would get it out of my system or something. Or just that, if neither option is particuarly good, might as well pick the easier one. I almost want to feel sorry for myself.

But then I started writing and got distracted and forgot.

stupid whiny stuff

Good things happened today. I hung out with my friends. I finished my awesome skirt. I hung out with friends. I passed my apartment inspection. I had a nice talk on the phone. Good things happened yesterday. I helped a student. I finished my apartment. I had root beer floats and hung out with friends and got work done and conquered my Dreamweaver issues. As far as I can remember, good things happened the day before that, and the day before that. So why am I miserable?

Friday, November 13, 2009

You Are Special

And because you're special, I'm posting another sneak peak of new work! No one else gets to see it yet but YOU.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Why I'm Not A Demon-Fighting, Sword-Slinging, Heroine on a Magical Horse

This is meant to be told aloud, so I kept a lot of verbal static and grammatical awkwardness. There are some tense issues as well, that I may iron out later. To be told at the next MO+# event (theme: embarrassment), then I'll probably radio-ize it:

Okay, so I like kids’ stuff. No surprise to any of you. I like things that come in Fischer Price colors. I like fairy tales. I walk into a Claire’s Boutique and I would wear 90% of the stuff they sell, and not to prove how totally ironic and hip I am, but because I genuinely like sparkly pink objects. I’m 30 years old and I haven’t yet started to refer to myself with the word woman. I mean, I acknowledge that, technically, it’s true. I just don’t really believe it. The word makes me kind of uncomfortable.
This isn’t a new thing. I’ve always been kind of reluctant to grow up. I don’t really like moving from one part of life to another. This story takes place during one of those moving-from-one-part-of-life-to-another times, in the summer between sixth and seventh grade:
When I was growing up, I spent all my summers taking classes. I was an extra-curricular over-achiever. I played the violin, then I played the guitar, then I played the piano and took voice lessons. I took theater classes and calligraphy classes and writing classes and paper making classes and computer classes and drawing classes and dance classes and even a chess class. My parents even got me to do gymnastics and soccer, although those didn’t last very long. I think it was a combination of my mother making up for all the things she didn’t get to do as a kid, and a good way of getting me out of her way after school and during the summer.
This summer, besides the usual arty kind of stuff, I also signed up for a fencing class. This was kind of an odd choice for me, because it was a sport, sort of, and required physical activity and coordination, which I suck at. But it was fencing. I was going to learn how to use a sword.
See, the thing is, I was a nerdy, socially awkward kid. (I like to use the past tense there, as if I wasn’t still nerdy and socially awkward.) Anyway, like every other nerdy, socially awkward kid, I read a lot. I read a lot of fantasy books. The kinds with swords and people saying m’lady, and ideally the kind with magical horses that formed special, magical bonds with their riders. I’m not sure if anyone here is familiar with Mercedes Lackey or Anne McCaffery? That’s kind of the thing I read. So I thought that learning to fence would be the coolest damn thing in the world. After learning how to use a sword, I would be, like, a step away from having a horse companion to kick ass with.
So I show up to the first day of class, and, like every other first day of class, we meet the teacher and introduce ourselves, and we go over what we were going to learn. The teacher tells us a little bit about the sport of fencing, different styles, and goes over the equipment we’d be using to poke at each other with swords, and the equipment we’d be wearing so no one got injured while we’re hitting each other with swords. There were the white suits and masks that I’d seen on TV. There were metal plates that went inside the suits. There were also metal bowls that I was supposed to put inside my bra. They looked kind of like the things that she-ra wears, except it wasn’t a cartoon, and I was supposed to wear them!
The problem was, I didn’t wear a bra. I was not early bloomer. To be fair, I wasn’t a late bloomer, either. What I was, was a very late acknowledger. I got boobs at the same time as everyone else, but I completely ignored their existence. Acknowledging them would involve buying, you know, holders for them, which would require going shopping with my mother, who would probably use the word brassiere, and hearing my mother use the word brassiere was something I was definitely not prepared for. I was willing to put it off as long as possible, and I would have been perfectly happy if “as long as possible” was actually “forever.”
So here I am, bra-less in fencing class where, apparently, I need a bra. I have three choices. I could go bra shopping with my mother. I could tell the teacher, when he handed out the white outfits, that I didn’t wear a bra, and wouldn’t need the whole she-ra bit. Or I could quit fencing. So, obviously, I quit fencing.
And so if you’re ever wondering why I’m not a demon-fighting, sword-swinging, heroine on a magical horse, that’s why. I was too embarrassed to buy a bra.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Jealousy Again

A little while ago I decided that the default definition of boyfriend/girlfriend is a monogamous one. While there are plenty of people in poly-type relationships, I think that unless it is actually discussed at some point, I can't expect anyone to assume that I want one. Therefore, when I asked Satanist Dan to be my boyfriend, I was changing it from a de facto monogamous relationship to a real one. I didn't think about this at the time, but I am not unhappy with the realization. I was heading in that direction anyway.

So when Fenna tells Bryan that he should come visit while I'm there because one of us will make out with him, I said I wasn't available for making out. It felt really weird to say. And then it felt weird that it felt weird. So weird!

I'm not sure how I feel about this. I was really enjoying the lack of jealousy that came with the flings I was having. Back when Satanist Dan was Boy 2, he could have been sleeping around and my only concern was that he was doing it safely. After all, I was. I was kind of proud of myself for having the emotional maturity to be rational about it, because I think in the past I would have jealously wanted a double standard. So now I'm back thinking that I want Satanist Dan all to myself, and it feels a little like a step backwards into irrationality. Because I know that making out with Bryan wouldn't mean anything, or change anything. But when I think about Dan doing the same thing, I don't know how I feel, but I don't quite like it.

Monday, November 9, 2009

sneak peak

it isn't even on flickr yet! This, folks, is the interwebs premier!

For those of you in the Iowa City area, this, along with 7 other fun-filled images, will be on display in Studio Arts until 7pm Thursday.

I figured I should post something pink before going back to my regularly scheduled whining.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

He said the L word

and not in reference to Showtime. It was a love you, bye! kind of thing. There was no looking into eyes, no solemn profession of feelings. I am sure that it shouldn't be taken literally. On the other hand, I am slightly less worried about driving him away.

(I considered only posting this on a flickr "friends and family" setting out of some new paranoia regarding it being read by the subject. But then again, if he makes it to my blog, will it really matter that this entry isn't visible? There are so many...)

Status Update

Not changing Facebook status, which feels too stuffy and official. But I think that changing my dating site profile is appropriate about now.

Monday, November 2, 2009


This weekend I wrote two artist's statements
put together my CV
applied for a show
finished spinning Kenda's commission
did a little swing dancing
got drunk with Satanist Dan
had dinner with Kendra*
made a new friend

That really is something. Objectively, I have no reason to complain, do I? Must work on that not-complaining bit.

*not a typo, I know a Kendra and a Kenda. This is going to get me in trouble. I will get it wrong all the time. Like Alisa and Alyssa.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Dinner plans make statement writing fun

(Not that I wrote this during dinner, but that knowing I was going to have fun later made it easier to sit down and get something done.)


Nothing says fun like a midway. Everything comes in candy colors, bright, shining, blinking, glowing, popping, chirping, everyone wins! Even the carnies, dried and brown and tired, they push and prod shy teenagers towards each other like smoke-stained Cupids. Why don’t you win that pretty girl a rose? How can you help but smile? Laugh? Spin and shriek on the rides, get your hands and face sticky with funnel cake and giant hot dogs, win your girl a prize?

And yet, there are moments when a clearing opens up in the crowd, and for a minute I see a woman sitting on a child’s wagon, alone on empty pavement. Another moment later, and she is lost as the crowd fills the space again. That is what I am looking for: the moments when the spell is broken, and all the cotton candy and inflatable dolphins can’t stop her feet from aching, can’t keep the boredom from a child’s face as he waits for his dad to return, can’t cheer up a toddler as he screams on the carousel.

The people in these photos have stopped to wait, stopped to think, stopped to rest. In a way, they have left the midway. They stand still while it moves along without them. In the midst of the people and the rides and the games, they have found quiet.

(Of course, the one I have left to do is the one I need most to have done. Still, it's nice to know that there's only one left.)

Things they want

1. Cover letter - part done, not finished
2. CV - ready
3. Portfolio of work - ready
4. Portfolio of student work - need to go through a zillion CDs
5. Statement of teaching philosophy - see cover letter

Also need to finish:

6. Statements for State Fair & Natural History projects. (Both partly done.)
7. Grade assignment #3 (due Thursday!)

Today I worked on 1 and 2, so far. (Also wrote terrible, inadequate, "treatment" for radio essay.)

Three new posts in November, and it's not even noon yet

These melodramatic posts are actually making me feel a little optimistic. Because that's all they are. I'm done with them. They're only a record of what I needed to get out of my head. Once upon a time I would have stayed in those thoughts. In the time before that, I would have called SD, crying, to tell him those things. I would have sent bitter, passive-aggressive, messages.

I'm going to go to the gym. I'm going to get some work done. I'll probably be feeling a little down tonight, but not badly. I'll probably write it down. I'll get over it.

What I might say, if we ever talked about stuff like this

I am always excited to see you. I am always happy around you. If I stay over Sunday night, I glow for half the day on Monday. You are sweet, and fun, and crazy. Like everything else that makes me happy, I want to see you, hear from you, all the time. I am trying so hard to be good, to do this right. I don't want to scare you away. I know this isn't anything serious. I know you're just having fun. I mean, that was kind of the point. That was what I was looking for, I'm just not very good at it.


I feel like the sorriest person in the entire world. I am sad and hurt and angry at myself. I'm awake at 7:20 am, after having spent an hour not believing that I was awake at 6:20 am. That's actually been going on for a few days now, I don't know why. I'm sure I'll be back in bed by 9 am, trying to fashion some semblance of a normal sleep pattern.

I know I am blowing this all out of proportion. It's totally not a big deal. And it's entirely my fault. I could have done things differently, or I could have responded reasonably to what I did do.

Sara did call, and she called at 10:30! Why didn't I hear it? My phone wakes me up even in another room, I should have heard it. I would have gone out. I would have run into Andrew and Dan. I wouldn't have minded that Dan didn't call. I wouldn't have turned into this stupid ball of self pity.

I never, ever, want to be that girl again. The girl who's sad and hurt and angry because her boyfriend went out and didn't call her, who starts imagining him picking up someone else for the night. The girl who feels like she has no friends because she spent a Saturday night home alone.

The thing is, it was a misunderstanding. And as I sit here, whining and complaining about being sad and stupid, the hurt is fading. A week ago I didn't care if my boyfriend saw other people, hell, a week ago he wasn't my boyfriend. I don't know if I really care now, or if I was just finding ways to make myself miserable.

I don't even know if I want to post this. Now that I've said it, it feels so much more distant. So ridiculous. Embarrassing. This isn't how I feel, this is some temporary glitch, like being awake at 6 am on a Sunday. Time to go back to bed, maybe start the day over again in a few hours.

Good night.

I'm feeling better already.