Tags: soniczev

July 2006

Finding Community

I'm just getting home from Unblurred. I actually hadn't gone to Unblurred in several months (some of you may recall the disaster that was my last trip to Unblurred). But tonight was fabulous. The street was literally filled with good friends of mine. I got to have a long talk with la_nuque (aka shalomcarrie), and, later, an equally long talk with Lindsay, a former Co-op employee who I hadn't seen in about a year.

Phat Mandee was there (and said she will be visiting anarqueso and Formaldehyde soon -- I'm jealous), as was Dave, FarMaria, Lucas, Peezy, and -- get this --
Zocks. I haven't seen Zocks in more than a year -- since February of 2005, I believe. It was a trip. He told me Hipster moved to Dormont (Dormont?!?! Fucking hell).

And as I drove home, I thought of something that FarMaria said to me back in November: I'm a part of a community here. It's just really great when you have one of those nights where you really feel it, you know?
Me pink

small world

Tonight at The Co-op, and old friend from my raver days came in (note to sillylilboi: this was Laura, that chick who used to hang with Brandon). And as she's buying her groceries, she casually mentions that she's dating someone I know: Hipster. Hipster. I was ... well, I was concerned, to say the very least. First off, she had no clue that he and I had ever had any sort of romantic entanglement ("He said you were just friends ..." -- um, yes, now, but, uh ...). But secondly, she also had no clue that he was still married. And I feel for her, because I certainly had no clue that he was still married at the time either. I left it at that -- didn't fill her in on his other lies, on his other instances of bad behavior, though the urge to tell all was certainly there. I mean, I do like the guy, I do consider him a friend, but would I recommend him as someone to date? Yea. Not exactly. So I told her the one big lie and I suppose I'm hoping she'll use that to unravel the rest. And I also suggested she talk to Zocks, as he was a source of a lot of information for me.

And if this doesn't beat all: Joe sees me talking to her and starts telling me how she came to his place with some guy. He starts describing the guy and yup, it's Hipster. And Joe says he got such a shady vibe from him, and I'm like yea, that's him alright.


In other news, I'm quitting smoking yet again (what is this, like the third time this week?). I'd quit two days ago, but unixd0rk is having major roommate drama and last night ... well, last night just sort of called for a cigarette. Which was incredibly stupid of me, because yesterday I'd made it through the day without one in a relatively painless fashion. I've posted a lot about the quitting struggles on The Antioch92 Message Board, and folks there are being wonderfully helpful and supportive. So yes, I'm trying this again.

QuitMeter Counter courtesy of www.quitmeter.com.
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Building communities

Last night I read the next journal. While journal #1 was pretty much 1995 (or 1994 - 1995), journal #2 covers 1995 - 1999, a four year time span with huge gaps missing. It's an unpleasant read. It starts on an up note -- Daryk and I were still together, in love, happy -- and then goes through a monumental pile of crap -- the breakup, my introduction to heroin, my friends robbing me, Bob's death (the death of Bob the first, that is), Stoney's death, and Maggie's death.

But honestly, the most depressing part, for me, is the change in my tone when I moved from Chicago to Pittsburgh.

In Chicago I had a life. Places that I frequented, friends, a job that I dug, and apartment I liked ... and then all of a sudden I'm back in Pittsburgh with none of those things.

It got me to thinking about building communities, about building a life. When I first moved to Chicago, most of my friends were my roommate's friends, hand-me-down friends (sure, we both knew catbirdgirl and holzman at Antioch, but they were really much closer with her). But by the time I met Daryk, I was working at Facets, living on my own, and writing mostly about people I knew from work, or the neighborhood ... my friends, people who cared about me.

Now I've been in Pittsburgh for about 9 years, and it really took me until just two years ago to build a community here. Now I can go out and have that same thing I had in Chicago -- chance meetings with friendly acquaintances, waiters who recognize me at the restaurants I frequent -- that night out with Zocks, I seemed to know at least half of the people at BBT; two weekends ago with unixd0rk, we must've run into a good twenty people that I knew.

It's frustrating. It makes me sadder that I left a good life behind than that I fucked up that life by doing drugs. And it reminds me of something that I've only recently learned -- that it doesn't matter where you are.
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Random thoughts that are keeping me awake

Or, perhaps more accurately, distracting me from sleep:

* Thoughts about my ex in Chicago. You know, the one for whom BDSM is a lifestyle, not a hobby.

* Thinking about a poem that my (evil) ex-roommate wrote about a car accident that I was in when I was 19, and about the man who was killed in that accident. rawdolphin, you may remember the line that still echoes in my head: "In this matter of moving forward, it seems he got there first."

* Thinking about one of the biggest reasons that I love my job: namely, the random people from my life who inevitably end up in my checkout line. Today I saw Amiena, a woman named Donna (Dunna?) who is the sister of a guy I barely knew in grade school (ratphooey: how weird is it to be 34 years old and have some woman you've never spoken to before ask "Did you go to Falk?"), and, the best surprise of all, Heather! Heather, my old friend from Youth Cry. Heather, who I haven't seen since 1988 or thereabouts. Heather.

* Thinking about the week ahead. The thing I'm looking forward to: Going to Unblurred on Friday with unixd0rk. The thing I'm not especially looking forward to: Taking Jacob and Tino to the vet on Wednesday (trying to cage two 18 pound cats is a sure way to end up clawed and bloody).

* And hey, on a random note of still more bad behavior, Hipster emailed me the other day and casually mentioned that he gave the two hits of acid he had promised to me to Zocks instead. Zocks, who doesn't even like acid. Thanks a lot, Hipster.
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I could stand a little pity now and then

To quote n0thingman, "ah, the joy of triggers."

I just had a very weird and unexpected fight of sorts with Hipster. The specifics have to do with him, and me, and anjeelou, and Zocks, and a stupid comment that he made to me weeks ago. I won't go into the whole thing, but the important parts are that it prompted anjeelou to send him an email calling him a jerk, and that it made me feel like he didn't remember that I was a girl.

That really rubs me the wrong way.

Yes, one look at my friends list, or my cell phone, or any aspect of my life and you'll see that most, if not all, of my friends are boys. Always have been. Since preschool and Austin, or the first grade and Brian and Brian. And I never have been much of a girl, at least not in the American sense of the word -- never a big fan of makeup, or shaving (though I did really dig the riot grrl trend -- there was something that felt just right to me about pairing a tiny little dress with a pair of combat boots). I've never given two shits about wrinkles, or grey hair, and the logic behind wearing shoes that aren't comfortable is beyond me.

Yes, I know, gender stereotypes, blah blah blah ... I'm not saying that I can't eschew all of these things and still be a girl ...

OK, so maybe I do need to explain the situation. The short version is that Hipster said "Zocks needs a girlfriend -- think anjeelou would be into him?" Now, obviously there's last weekend and all of the issues with my own feelings for Zocks, but the trigger, the thing that made me start weeping over a stupid fight we were having on MSN Messenger, was that it felt to me like he was saying "hey, you know some girls, right?" while completely missing the fact that I am a girl.

And, to his credit, he apologized, and yes, I should have said something to him when this first happened two weeks ago as opposed to letting it build up until I experienced core failure tonight.

I think I was already in a bad space. Driving home from Quiet Storm and thinking about last week with Zocks ... feeling affection-starved, like I so often do ... thinking that it's sad that the tiniest little bit of affection -- like Thursday night -- leaves me so hungry for more ... and then I get this unexpected message from Hipster when I log on and all hell breaks loose. n0thingman doesn't like him (and, apparently, neither does anjeelou).

n0thingman invited me over to his office for pizza, but this whole scene has me worn out. I think I need to call today officially over, go to bed, and hope that tomorrow brings better things.

Thoughts, anyone?
Me pink

I lost my subject line because LJ was in read only mode, but at least I thought to save my text ...

Hello again one and all.

As promised, I wanted to write at least a little bit about all of the things that went on this weekend but didn't get written about.

On Friday evening, Monica called. I thought she was responding to the "let's hang out" email that I sent out to about a half dozen people when I found out I'd have some actual weekend time off, but actually, it was just random good luck that she called. She invited me out to her father's house for dinner.

We ate noodles and latkes and watched Amelie, a movie that I'd always wanted to see but never quite gotten around to. We also drank vodka, and she drank quite a bit more than I did (as I was still recovering from Thursday night with Zocks).

Among other things, I got her to call n0thingman and try to resolve the bass situation that's been a bone of contention between them for years now. We also spent a good long time talking about fucking boys with strap-ons. Oh, and at some point in the wee hours, she called her girlfriend in Paris and put me on the phone with her. I apparently remember none of the French that I learned in high school.

Saturday day it was back to the city for my lunch with unixd0rk at Quiet Storm. unixd0rk and I have talked online a good bit, and met face to face on a few very brief occasions, but this was our first chance to sit down across a table from one another and really talk. It was a great time. You know that thing when you're just getting to know someone but yet it's so comfortable and relaxed that you feel like you've known each other for years? Yea, that thing. It's a rare gift, and I'm always so pleased when it happens.

We talked about ... well, gosh, lots of things. Mad Magazine leaps to mind, as do The Simpsons, doctors, ginger Altoids, and a traumatic car ride he once experienced. There were tales of exes, and old friends, and a show and tell portion involving fortune cookie fortunes and photographs of people that he doesn't know. And toward the end, a random man walked past and declared "You two have been sitting here since the last time I walked by -- it must be a meeting of the minds!" I dug that.

Our lunch was in part a celebratory thing for an interview he had the day before that apparently went pretty well. One of the great joys for me of finally having a decent job is that I can do things like take my friends out and buy them lunch -- it felt really great to be able to do that.

I sort of did that with Zocks on Thursday, though that was more the bar thing (you know, he buys a round, then I buy a round, and so on, and so forth). And speaking of Zocks, on Thursday night he told me about an online message board that he'd been using as sort of a personal blog, and last night I looked it up. Wow. Hipster could not be more wrong when he says that Zocks needs a new girlfriend. What Zocks needs is to mourn for the relationship that just ended, and to have friends who aren't jerks and are willing to sit and listen to him when he needs to talk it through. I intend to be one of those friends. The next time I see him, I plan on telling him that I read what he wrote online, and hope* that the conversation will evolve from there.

So unixd0rk, I was thinking about you at work tonight. Shouldn't your ginger reserves be running low about now?

*note to n0thingman: I didn't have to say "I mike" because I didn't say "I hope" -- I just said "hope."
Me pink

My broken heart is under the microscope

OK, the weekend.

Yea, Thursday night with Zocks (formerly known as "Hipster's Best Friend," or "H.B.F.") was intense for me. I never expected to see him at all that day, let alone have him spend the night in my bed. It was the first time we ever did anything alone together, without Hipster being involved. We manifested Christopher Walken and "The Continental."

Ever since I'd first met Zocks I'd liked him -- yes, liked him -- and just never allowed myself to admit it because he was, well, Hipster's Best Friend, for crying out loud. Thursday night I let myself become open to that possibility. I'm paying for it now.

So I'll share the specifics --

Last night, I went out with Hipster, his girlfriend (herxsentences? I think maybe yes, but I'm not sure), and Zocks. When I arrived at Hipster's house to pick him and his girlfriend up, they weren't there. Typical. Typical of Hipster and his bad behavior. So I called Zocks. Turns out they were all three together at Hipster's Girlfriend's house, so I headed thataway.

We went to Dee's on the South Side and Zocks was definitely not acting the way I was feeling, as in, he didn't seem especially glad or eager to see me or talk to me. Not rude, just not ... I don't know, interested, I suppose. Ruthi's boyfriend was at Dee's, and, for what it's worth, he was much more flirty with me than Zocks was. But the upshot is that this bummed me out, and I started slamming back the 7&7s, and was hammered in pretty short order.

After Dee's closed we went to Tom's Diner. The best moment of that miserable experience was when Zocks found the Chimp Mint I had slipped into his pocket. Hipster knew I'd done it and Zocks' "What the hell is this?" was really quite funny.

The consequence of that series of bad decisions was that today was my first day working at The Co-op hungover. The first few hours sucked ass, but by the end, I was once again feeling lucky to work in such a great place. My coworkers are definitely becoming my friends, and made me feel so much better about the whole thing. Joe insists that yes, it was a date, and when I showed Lindsay a picture of me and Hipster and Zocks, she told me that she thinks that either Hipster or Zocks used to go to goth night at some club and swear that his name was "Freedom" or "Liberty" or something equally hokey.

This post is all over the map. Apologies if I'm giving any of my readers a migraine. And apologies to Monica, and to unixd0rk, because I spent some quality time with each of them this weekend, and I really do mean to write about that, and not just the petty dramas of my all-too-easily broken heart. unixd0rk, the next post is all about you, Babycakes. About what a great time I had with you yesterday, and about how wonderful I think it is that you and I seem to be becoming fast friends in a really comfortable and relaxed kind of way. I think you're the shiznit. The vegan shiznit, no less.
Me pink

Asking questions, getting answers

Was that a date? No, I don't think so.

Last night I went out with Hipster, Hipster's Best Friend, and Hipster's Girlfriend. Knowing Hipster like I do, I think it was likely that I was invited along to be H.B.F.'s surrogate date of a sort -- you know, keep things in balance, boy girl boy girl -- but H.B.F. (who, by the way, is in desperate need of a better nickname than "Hipster's Best Friend") didn't really seem all that into me -- or certainly not more into me than, say, Hipster's Girlfriend.

So I drank too much and got maudlin (on the inside, at any rate) and now I'm awake, preparing for work, and hungover as fuck. Good times. Not.

However, overall, it was a great two days off. Not only did I spend time with them, but I spent Friday night at Monica's house (drinking vodka and talking about fucking boys with a strap-on), and I had a delightful lunch yesterday with unixd0rk (it was, we were told, a "meeting of the minds.") I want to write about these things, but for now, I feel like I've been kicked in the head, so that's going to have to wait.

OK, shower time.
Me pink

Was that a date?

So last night I went out with Hipster's Best Friend. I was at work, minding my own business, when he called ... called him back on my lunch break and we made plans to go out for drinks when I got off of work. The BBT led to Gooski's (we missed the free cigarettes at BBT but got some at Gooski's -- and after 1:00 am, no less -- very random), and finally back to my place, where he spent the night (yes, curled up together, and no, not schtupping).

So, um, was that a date? Did I actually go out on a date with Hipster's Best Friend?

As I told n0thingman, the one thought that reassures me is that, as Hipster's Best Friend, it would be his job, not mine, to tell Hipster if something actually happened between us. Right?

Oh, how delightfully confusing.
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(no subject)

Just returned home from the traditional Jewish Christmas celebration -- Chinese dinner -- with ratphooey, lurpy, Aubree, and Ernie.

First of all, the restaurant that we were supposed to go to was closed. Really closed, as in closed forever. Apparently yesterday was their last day. They couldn't hold out for one more day to make that big Christmas money? Who knows. ratphooey posits that they were deep in debt and closed today for fear of Vinnie Chang showing up and busting their kneecaps.

But we went to Hunan Kitchen, which is always a good choice, especially since I had a coupon for 50% of an entree. Merry Christmas! They were jam packed full of Christmas Jews and our 7:30 dinner became getting seated at 8:00 ish and getting served a little after 9:00. Still, it was a good way to end the day, and I found I didn't especially mind the wait.

Hipster was supposed to join us but instead hung out with another Jewish friend of his (who felt that Chinese food on Christmas was too traditional and thus was boycotting the idea). And I called Daryk, who I always think of on Christmas because of the wonderful one we spent together in 1995, lying on his floor and putting together a jigsaw puzzle. He said he was thinking of me too.

So I guess that's it. It's A Wonderful Life is on TV, which also makes me think of Christmas with Daryk, so I think I may log off and call him.

Oh, and love to The Hobo Ken, whoever you are, for sending me that wonderful CD and for reading my LiveJournal. One of these days I'll track you down and give you a big sloppy kiss.