Writing, Running, Being.

The finish line is a shifty Thing and what is life, but reckoning?
Ani DiFranco

Saturday, May 6, 2006

i'm going home with a stone strapped onto my back

so about 800 miles, one speeding ticket and a mysterious new rattle later i sit here in the piano room trying to remember why i came "home". i got in at 3:30 am on friday, slept all day, went on a road ride, waited for my family to come home and then went back to sleep. this morning i awoke at 5:30 am to a foreign alarm clock and my mom's nagging knock at my door. for a horrifying second i thought i was still in high school. then i came to my senses and realized i am 23 and that is not my alarm clock and i never have to attend another pep rally or take another geometry final as long as i live. relief swept over my half-conscious mind. it was time to wake up and do a triathlon with my mom, who is 50. it was her first tri and she won an age group medal. it was cute. i won an age group medal too and took 2nd place overall. i lost by 2 minutes...but it was my best place and best time ever so mom and i both left satisfied with our performances. then we drove to lawrence to catch the tail end of erin's swim meet. i saw my old coaches. the swim meet reeked of chlorine and nostalgia and for another horrifying second i thought i was in high school again, trying to qualify for state in the 100 fly but being so distracted by pre-prom stress that i couldn't focus on my swim. then i remembered that i am 23 and i never have to chant "we are the pioneers, the mighty, mighty pioneers" in a team huddle or hold out my arm awkwardly as a nervous and pimply teenager slips a gawdy bouquet onto my wrist as long as i live. again, relief. then we went home and i spent 2 hours making erin look like audrey hepburn (i did a damn good job) before unleashing her into the enchanting and exhausting pandemonium that is prom night.me? dramatic? nah. anyway, erin's at prom, mom and dad are at a 50's theme party that i was not invited to, and teresa is waitressing in kansas city. so that leaves me alone in the piano room. i've given up on valse caprice and moonlight sonata after about 2 frustrating hours and kicked myself wherever flexibly possible for quitting piano. wow. i miss colorado. i miss my apartment and my one spoon. i miss the screaming children in the day care across the street. i miss my lack of television and my abundance of dirty laundry. now my parents are home from the party and suddenly i want to be alone again. what is it with me not knowing what i want? my dad is singing one tin soldier in the kitchen and my mom is talking to the dogs. apparantly she missed them immensly over the short duration of her 50's theme party. i just realized that my mom is waayy more affectionate with her dogs than she ever was with any of her children. i wonder: had my mother cooed repetitive affirmations such as "gooood girrrl" to me throughout my youth, would it have affected my self esteem? would i be more confident? more secure? less anti-social? happier??? aw hell, who cares. now my dad is telling me about a man he met at the party who sings in a barbershop quartet. mr. campsey and his barbershop quartet sound like some swell cats. hmmm. it's kind of weird writing about my dad as he's standing here talking to me. funny though. now he's telling me how old he feels because hanging out with people your own age makes you realize how old you are once you're old and hanging out...or something like that. it's hard to listen and type at the same time. i feel like a fucking stenographer. something about hot dogs and moustaches and beer guts and bald spots...lots of bald spots. and all i want is some applesauce but there are too many spoons here at my parents house. i hate it when i have too many choices. like the 5.5s at the climbing gym. too many choices is counterintuitive. i learned that word at the bike shop. i hope i used it correctly.

Wednesday, May 3, 2006

losing meaning

When you say a word over and over, even your own name, it loses its meaning. We have been talking about Life too much lately. We have been dissecting relationships and inspecting their veins under microscopes and then piecing them back together practically and sensibly. Life is losing its meaning.
Let's just stop talking about it for a second. I don't want to talk about it. Here we are so let's just live. And if what we believed turns out to be right we're okay and if not we're screwed. But no amount of sooth-seeking can deliver us at this point. There have been brilliant philosophers before us and we've heard what they had to say: know thyself. there is nothing stable in human affairs. necessity is the mother of invention. hope is a waking dream blah blah blah...but it doesn't affect the speed at which you ride your bike downhill or the vigor with which you embrace Love (whether you're right or wrong about it). And it doesn't affect the string of curses that fly from your mouth when you crash or the stream of tears that flow from your lachrymal glands when you discover you were wrong all along...
And maybe God isn't the answer to that ever-present void inside of you. Maybe the answer is a puppy or cheesecake or really good sex. And you can spend your whole life contemplating that void- why it's there, how it came to be so big, and what to fill it with, or you could opt for trial and error. You could keep sticking things in there and pulling them out until something fits and sticks and whether or not that will ever happen, no one knows but all you have is Life and Life is only Time so you might as well use it, however wisely....
I just don't want to talk about it anymore. I don't want to analyze it. I don't want to write songs about it that Sarah and Peter and Bob Dylan have already sung with so much more talent. I don't want to describe it with words that Petrarch and Virginia Woolf have already used. I don't want to paint it in Colors because colors rely too heavily on the eyes through which they're beheld and then they disappear altogether in the absence of light. I just want to laugh until no sound comes out and I am on the floor, crying and cramping and my belly aches. I want to run until there's nothing left in me and sing until I'm hoarse and weak and eat until I puke. Maybe I just want to puke and start all over. Is puking allowed? How about starting over?