Sushi.

I feel there have been certain things my life has centered around.  A theme becomes clear in the midst of confusion and chaos, and it is something I grasp on to.  It has a weird way of guiding me through the murky waters and the questions that arise.  It is often something small, typically unnoticed but by myself and the few people involved.  For months and months during the difficult break up from Jonathan, stars were a central theme.  There were two songs that I was (and still am) obsessed with that dealt with stars, eyes, guidance, and the wish to not lose someone (the songs are “Beautiful” by The Firebird Band and “Cosmic Love” by Florence + the Machine).  They are two songs that have had such an impact with their lyrics that they are on my queue for future tattoos.  Though I will not get a tattoo of this new theme, it is emerging, and it is becoming central to my life: sushi.

It seems that wherever I go, or whoever I speak to, sushi correlates to building friendships and relationships.  I have always shared sushi dinners with Kaitlyn.  It was, for the longest time, a Wednesday night activity between us.  There is a restaurant in Iowa City called Formosa.  On Wednesday’s they would have half price bottle of wine nights.  We would go and get a roll, a salad, and edamame, and then split a more expensive bottle of red wine.  Since coming back to the Chicago area, we have had similar nights, just talking girl talk and planning the next steps of our lives.  It feels very inclusive and like things are on the right track again.

When in California Jonathan and I did not have sushi once.  You would think that being as close (closer than Chicago or Iowa City) to the ocean as we were that it would have happened.  But it didn’t.  It’s this odd idea that sushi is right and the lack of sushi is wrong.  Things begin falling apart and all the small details that make life good, like sushi, disappear.  Granted, that is because when things go bad you lose some of the patience it takes to realize the small details.  But even in abject sadness, right when I returned from California, Kaitlyn suggested it one night.  Shortly afterwards I had this emotional awakening that desiring what I had is far worse than what I could have.  At least there is hope in what I could have.  I do not think it was the sushi that brought on this realization, but the theme was there, the symbolism that sushi holds for me, and it helped push me over the hump, to face the fear of potential loneliness, but also to help me realize that as long as I have those close friends, I will never, ever be alone.

Now sushi is coming into play again.  Eating it with Kaitlyn on Sunday and then entering Vintage Underground; finding all these wonderful artifacts from other people’s lives and turning them around to create something new and stylish.  The potential for Chicago living and the chance to reincarnate a living situation but with a higher degree of love and compassion.  It seems like everywhere I have gone in the past three days someone mentions sushi, and it is always accompanied with positive and affirming actions.  Beginning again, starting over, letting the cycle birth itself.  Maybe there is a heaven, and it involves Sweet Potato maki.

My weekend was “Go Do” by Jonsi.

Listen to the song (“Go D0“).  Also “Animal Arithmetic.”  Those two songs, with their exploration of sound mixed with high energy rhythms and melodic moments, do a wonderful job of giving an auditory example of this past weekend and yesterday.  I cannot help but smile, maybe even begin swaying and dancing, as I close my eyes and soak the music in.  It hits somewhere deep in my chest and it acts like a breath of fresh air; invigorating and light and alive.  It’s hopeful, like for the first time the pieces of the puzzle are coming together and I am seeing a hint of the picture on the cover of the box.

Not only did I have a fun-filled, random weekend involving tattoos, amazing food, a drunk birthday boy, Wiener Circle (they have a vegetarian hamburger now!), and long nights reminiscent of the all-nighters pulled in college, but also I am now interning with the Metro in Chicago.  I could not stop smiling last night.  That is until I fell asleep.  Even then, though, the dreams were pleasant.

 

Pondering friendship.

I have always been somewhat introverted. I made mention in a previous post that, for the most part, I enjoy my alone time. That does not mean I like loneliness, it means that the moments of solitude that I do have, I relish in. It feels right, comfortable, like I can breathe when the rest of the time I feel tied up in anxiety about what people think about me. Do they like me? Am I coming on too strongly? Should I tone it down? I really like this person, but the fear of rejection is far outweighing a possible connection. Also, in a earlier post, I shared how I relate to “I Am A Rock” by Simon & Garfunkel. How the words reach deep within me and strike some unnamed chord.

This past week I have truly wondered whether I have the potential to make and keep up friendships. It comes so easy for people to stay in contact, but it is a struggle for me. And it’s not because I do not want to talk to people, or set up social outings to see these people, but the more I look at the situations, the more I delve into my psyche and try to discover the ticking time-bombs that are my past relationships and friendships, the more I realize that I tend to approach things with a certain distance. It’s easier for me to not be emotionally involved and step into a situation thinking with a more businesslike manner than that of someone really hoping to make a meaningful connection. And fear drives it. I fear confrontation. I fear rejection. I fear “the dismissal.” Because somehow it always becomes so personal to me. And again, I think that’s because I approach things with distance, and when a person’s feelings are not reciprocated to their liking (because this, in essence, is how my shyness comes across, as this bitchy, proud attitude, though I am anything but proud, and do not intend the bitchy quality) they back away. But then it produces a massive perpetuating circle where they pull away, I get sad, upset, depressed that once again I have lost a potential connection and pull away further, which then causes the other person to simply disappear.

And then the reverse. There are the times when I feel intrigued, fascinated, and determined to make sure the person knows that yes, I do like you, I do want a friendship with you, you are cool and you have made me smile more times in the last twenty-fours than I have in the past twenty-four days, and I come on too strong. I want to make sure that my unavailable vibe does not appear and screw everything up. The vacancy sign is on, there is room for a friendship, if not more, and I would love to work with you to build up that relationship. But then I think I reek of desperation. And then I wonder why I can’t just make a fucking long-term friend? I can never find that middle ground. And apparently I do a piss poor job of every other part of relationships, too.

I am single. And for the first time in years and years and years, I feel freedom in being single. I once tried to explain my fear of definitions (especially now) with an idea mentioned in Sex and the City. Samantha once said, “You can never be someone’s ex-girlfriend if you are never someone’s girlfriend.” And that’s true. But I also do not want to have casual flings. I am a relationship girl. In essence, even if I do not want the title, I will behave as such: support them, nurture their ideas and beliefs and passions, try to make them happy when they are sad, buy them gifts on their birthday, listen to them when they’ve had a bad day, etc. All things girlfriends do and how they behave towards their significant others. And the same goes for friendships (minus the not-wanting-a-defining-title). Sometimes I cannot make it to a birthday, or respond to a phone call or text message with expedited efficiency, but that does not mean I am not going to be there when the times are really bad, or if you need advice. So why do people believe I am being a bitch or distant? Yet, when I do respond or make sure I come to important events and am there, physically, as much as I can, people define me as overbearing and annoying. Or maybe that is how I view how THEY would view me. Either way, I feel like I am in a no-win situation. I feel helpless. And I wonder if it’s all worth it. And the more I think on it, the more I conclude that it’s not worth this emotional upheaval. Seriously self-doubting my ability to keep friendships because no matter which path I take I push people away. Maybe I should continue with my air of bitchiness and the people who deign to pass through my barrier are the only ones worth it. I just know that I cannot continue to feel like I am the annoying kid sister that no one wants around because she spoils the fun.

I know I have a few true friends. They have been my sisters and brothers through this chaotic point in my life. I am finding out that it is well worth it to have a handful, or less, of deep, meaningful relationships than to have a litany of names that will disappear in an instant.

The positives. The good vibes. The blessings.

I said I would be positive.  And BAM, ladies and gentlemen, today kicked some serious ass.  Thanks to everyone for putting smiles on my face and for taking the time and effort to rock my world.  And Glenn, I promise you will get your hat back, but thank you, thank you, thank you for letting me wear it and “steal” it.  You really are a great friend.  Farraday, you guys rocked it tonight.  Be proud of yourselves.  SOLD OUT SHOW!

Shhhheeeeessssssh. Read between the lines bozoooos.

I am listening to “The Skin of My Yellow Country Teeth” and I remember being in the car listening to this in Iowa.  His warbling voice, straining to hit a note, barely audible lyrics, until it gets to the chorus where he goes, “…my yellow country teeeeeeeeeth…” and I am thinking about how I tried to sing like him and failing miserably, and hurting my own ears, let alone anyone who might have heard me.  I am thinking about getting burritos.  And sunglasses.  And polarizing.  Barnes and Noble and getting myself coffee before going in to work.  How D would always make fun of me for drinking so much coffee and then she would come back from her lunch break with a massive McDonalds Caramel Frappe.  How Shel got me that disgusting and oh so delicious Frosty-cino thing, and how Cybin got one and we all perked up and ask what it was.  Sitting outside at lunch when it was only March and I was freezing but at the same time did not want to sit inside anymore.  How when everyone else went for a smoke break, I would sit on the bench outside the north side doors with my book and Orange Crush would come back and make fun of me.  How my Quasian and I had secret code for every conceivable joke, like a different language.  Apparently I am good at solidifying inside jokes.  And it’s always nice to know you have them with someone, don’t you think? There is a sense of respect and vulnerability in having an inside joke with someone.  You are close enough to that person that they know exactly what you mean when the rest of the world is scratching their heads wondering what they hell is being said.  Certain looks and winks and laughs and dance moves.  How my twin and I will always know what the hairy things are.  How my swassy girl will always respond with easy snakes biting hot.  How ta-tas are forever the best term used for knockers.  How power punches are a way of respecting the shit that we have to go through (well, now you have to go through) every day.  How Snickers are by far the superior chocolate treat, and the message inside is always special.  Something to get you through the day.  How no matter what happens, I will always say that I have not fallen into the ocean yet, and how certain songs will always evoke a memory or a feeling that stirs deep in their chest.  And can also bring tears.  How “That’s Not My Name” will always cause a myriad of reactions, from laughs to curses.  How Jean Claude will always make people whistle and hoot and holler.  That TACO freaking PIE and SPAGHETTI freaking PIE will always make people roll their eyes and laugh.  UH-OH has forever been ruined for me, because automatically afterwards I think about double negatives and curse!  Fairway is no longer just a supermarket, but a repetitive noun that needs to be SHOT.  SHEBONS and DIRTY MARTINIS are at the top of my best memories and by far the best drinks ever.  Wednesday night sushi dinners and half price bottles of wine.  “Girls night” was just code for let’s get loaded.  Caramel cremes, five dollar bottles of wine, and Brett giving us multiple free martinis.  My pink heels.  Dressing up and being Carrie Bradshaw for an evening, and, DUDE, I AM SOOOOO DRUNK, I DON’T THINK YOU UNDERSTAND…. and yes, I BLAME THE SHOTS!  No one ever looking at mail the same again.  And the QUESTIONS!?!?!  Grrr.  Damn Worldsleaze.  And did you know, my quasian, WHEN I SEE YOUR FACE, THERE IS NOT A THING I WOULD CHANGE, CUZ YOU’RE AMAZING JUST THE WAY YOU ARE.  I hope that you have similar memories.  I hope whenever you hear Whitney, you smile slyly because you have that video, flashlight in hand, dancing, dancing, dancing.  Or that Tik Tok always makes you think about P.Diddy, because you know he’s not your friend.  And that hopefully you did NOT throw up glitter.  And I hope you can still smile whenever you think about the good old 1-2.  It makes me smile.  And then laugh hysterically for about an hour and a half.  Or that picture on Shel’s phone of me impersonating a specific sitting position.  Margaritas!  Chimichangas!  EXTRA SOUR CREAM!  RED FACED AND GIGGLING!  NOW THE PARTY DON’T START UNTIL I WALK IN.  Oh, and swassy, you have to remember this: GREETINGS LOVED ONES, let’s take a journey……………………………………………  Because you know, deep inside you know, you can travel the world but nothing comes close to the golden coast, CALIFORNIA GIRLS, WE ARE UNFORGETTABLE. I hope this walk down memory lane finds you all smiling, because it has made me smile.  I needed it.  I have been listening to songs, remembering good times, looking forward to the future, and the ability to share more moments with you.  Read between the lines and you know exactly what I am talking about.  I bet you ten bucks you are smiling right now, just like I am.  AND THEY ARE NOT FUCKING PIRATE BOOTS.