Sunday, July 31, 2011

phantom ache

I had a tooth out last week. I spent a day on the good meds and a day hungover from the good meds; and now it just aches. Amazing how when one part of you is hurting, it stops much mattering what's going on with the rest. That pain is all you can think about.

The tooth had been in my life for a long time, all of my life that I can remember really. We'd had a difficult relationship over the past few years. Measures had been taken to salvage things: a root canal, a couple of round of antibiotics but as time went on, things only got worse and eventually I had to accept that there was no saving the tooth. The tooth was bad news and was never going to cause me anything but grief. Now it's gone and I'm aching.

Because when that which is a part of us is ripped brutally away, it hurts no matter what kind of palliatives we use. The tooth causes me more pain now that it's gone than it ever did when it was still around. It wasn't the ideal tooth but it was my tooth and now the space where it was aches from its absence.

Isn't that just life though?

Monday, July 18, 2011

like a gypsy

Shakira - Gypsy (Official Music Video). Watch more top selected videos about: Shakira

I post this video mostly for the shirtless Rafa. You're welcome. 

During a dinner tonight, the subject of moving came up: both what a pain it was to do and how cleansing the process of winnowing down of one's possessions could be.

Since graduating from college, I've moved seven times in as many years. My attachment to any place I've lived in has been passing. This is both good and bad I suppose; good because it's led to a certain leanness of lifestyle, bad because I never just have things like bandaids around.

The idea of actually owning property is downright alien but it's more than that. As much as New York City was my heart's desire in my early twenties, I suppose I was never really in it for the long haul. I came back to Seattle with every intention of leaving again for grad school some eight months later. And then I found myself with a life here the way one does: back in Seattle with friends and work and family and things I didn't want to leave.

Will I stay forever? I would never tempt fate by claiming to know the future (despite recent attempts). Love, work and adventure can always show up to carry you away in a way that one can't refuse. But I don't see that for myself. I see being here in Seattle, my home. With all its bad dressers and rainy days; with its passive drivers and brooding baristas. I'll always feel a little New York with my edge and my closet full of high heels but underneath that I'm Seattle. Underneath, I'm a deep thinking, tree climbing Northwesterner who wants a good book and good cup of coffee.

Who are you underneath it all?

Monday, July 11, 2011

nothing like the real thing

Upon returning home to my apartment last night, parched and weary from a long bachelorette weekend, I discovered a letter from Poets & Writers magazine. I was inexplicably excited for a moment thinking that I had somehow blacked out and submitted something for consideration that they were writing to inform me had been accepted (I hadn't). Instead I opened it to find that they were offering me a subscription at a special discounted rate for professional writers. The letter talked about how I was part of an elite community of writers that was receiving this special offer and it was so charmingly earnest that I'm almost wanted to take them up on it. After all, isn't that what we really want as writers, to be accepted? Even more than fame and fortune (ha), we want to be told that we're part of the club, that we're the real thing.

I think I applied to grad school in part because when my publication dreams slipped through my fingers with my first novel, I felt desperate for validation, for someone to tell that I had what it took to be a novelist. But the truth is being a 'real' writer doesn't come with an MFA or even publication, it's a pact you make over and again with yourself, reinforced every time you sit down at your laptop to work. I still might start reading Poets & Writers though.

What makes you feel like the real deal?

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

the scary age

I wrote for the Gloss today about my 'scary' age; i.e. the age at which I will officially panic if I'm not where I want to be in life. I'm not sure the exact number but it's somewhere between 38 and 45.

Do you have a scary age or do you take birthdays in stride?