Update, May 12: Wow, what were the odds? Immediately after I posted this, I had a ton of moral support and ten days after I got a job. So what's written below is maybe not quite as current as it was three weeks ago.


I'm sure by now you're all weary of reading my bitchfests, despite their infrequency, so I'm sorry to foist another one on you all. I have to get this stuff out of my head (as though I could stop thinking about it), so I may as well put it here. During the day, it doesn't seem so bad, but at night, it's all I can think about. So please pardon my venting, if you will.

Thanks are due to jessicaj for encouraging me to daylog this and for providing a bit of hope, and to Chras4 for maybe some inspiration.

The soundtrack to today's morass is Dead Inside by the Golden Palominos (Restless Records, 1996).


This is how things with me are right now:

  • I'm unemployed. Very much so. Since last May. No one will hire me, it seems. I apply, I interview, I follow up with email or phone calls (though, as of a few weeks ago, I no longer have a phone; I have to use my dad's cell phone number with interviewers). I fling résumés like frisbees, and nothing happens. I never get called back.
  • I'm completely destitute; I can't even afford food. I take what I can from my dad's revolting cache of expired, inexplicably kept food, but it's never enough to keep me sated for long. It's about as untasty as possible, but it's true that beggars cannot choose.
  • I'm stuck living with my crotchety, unemployed father in a place I hate, but without which I'd be homeless. He has been unemployed for a year longer than me, but his mother (my grandmother) is very well-off (she lives in a $30k/year nursing home), so he leeches off her to pay bills and whatnot. She's also a miser in the extreme, and I'm not sure she even knows he's leeching. I'm not allowed to leech.
  • I have no close friends.
  • I have no friends at all in this state. Indeed, I haven't even left this house for anything other than the pursuit of a job since katherine and indigoe swept me away to a nodermeet in November. (Fittingly, during that meet, I had some kind of fainting spell; I hit my head and spent the night in a hospital. I have no way of paying for it. I'm screwed.) I haven't been in a social setting since then and I don't expect to be in one in the foreseeable future.
  • I'm on an extended holiday away from my meds, which I was forced to stop taking (no money or insurance).
  • I see myself as ugly (broken teeth, MPB, wrong body).
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder makes it really hard to think about all this in anything resembling a coherent way.
  • My gender issues make everything else harder to deal with.
  • I am strongly considering suicide (I've been "considering" it for the past 20 years, actually, but only over the past two years or so has it become an actual option in my estimation). However, suicide is an act of passion, and I have no more passion. This complicates things. And in case you're wondering, I have called several suicide hotlines (via Skype, no less), and I found that they don't help at all because they really can't understand my problems in any way other than in their broadest, least-specific senses.

Here are a few more things that are slowly dragging me down to the bottom of the lake:

  • I miss my meds terribly (that is, I miss not crying every day, being able to sleep, being calm and not panicking). My baby boomer dad, who, for as long as I can remember, has been diametrically opposed to the whole concept of medicine, doesn't take me the least bit seriously when I tell him about this problem. It's infuriating to me that he doesn't understand.
  • The whole business of applying/interviewing for or inquiring about a job intimidates me to the point of terror.
  • It's inexcusable that people like me don't have a way of getting health care. Everything I'm writing about here would be much easier to handle if I was still medicated.
  • Happiness is so far out of my reach that it may as well not exist at all.
  • Whoever said that having nothing means having total freedom obviously never had nothing themselves.
  • There are no more advantages; there are only obstacles.
  • I don't know what, if anything, I'm holding on to. I suspect that it's nothing and I just haven't realized that yet.
  • I feel sick when I think of my life, especially these things:
    • Romantic love: In retrospect, I don't think I've ever actually experienced it, and I'm certain now that I won't have another opportunity to look at it up close (by my own choice; I am too undesirable). I do seem to remember loving those whom I chose to love unconditionally, without it being returned one way or another. I remember giving my love too easily, perhaps, and I think that scared people.
    • Education: I know fuck all, which is why no one will hire me. (I also have an attachment out for my arrest because I missed a court date last August because I had no way of getting there; this may have something to do with prospective employers ignoring me. I have no idea how to take care of it.)
    • Choices: I've never made a correct choice. Everything has inevitably blown up in my face in the end.
    • Purpose: Everything I've ever done has been entirely self-serving and unworthy of anyone's time or effort. Regardless, I can't seem to stop myself from continuing to plug away at life.
  • I am uninteresting to myself.
  • Even my dreams, once a refuge, have been uninteresting for years and years. I used to be able to induce lucid dreams, but I seem to have lost that ability. This oppresses me beyond words.
  • I feel so crushingly small.
  • I have no reason. For anything.
  • Trying hurts more and more with each failure.
  • I want to strangle the stars for all they promised me.

So, there it is. I know it looks like I'm dwelling on the negative things, and really, I suppose I am. But it's so unimaginably difficult to think past all of this. If you've read this far, I'm sorry for having wasted your time. I hope, however, that you noticed and were at least entertained by the pipe links.

He was a regular sight in the mall.

He was an older, quite happy man. A bit slow it almost seemed, but maybe not. But he had a boyish quality about him, a light in his eyes you see in the young and the simple. His face was ageless, like Benny Hill, round and youthful, even though his greying hair betrayed his age. I had no idea how old he actually was.

I was wasting my 20s working in a suburban mall, in a bookstore in a run down and impoverished area of the city. Many of the city's old, handicapped, immigrant and simply chronically unemployed lived here, and it made for a colourful day to meet the various customers.

And he was the most cheeful man I had ever met, walking through the mall, saying hello, his unmistakable gait with hands behind his back, and always a nice thing to say about everyone.

One day, I was supposed to take some kind of break, and knowing full well he had very little money, asked him if he wanted a cup of tea. He accepted graciously. I wanted to know more about this cat - frankly, I was depressed and suicidal, and wanted to know the secret of his enlightenment.

As we sat down and he reached for his tea, I finally found out why he always kept his hands hidden.

His hands were missing pieces of his fingers. The amputations were not even - some of them diagonal, some fingers missing a tip, others almost three quarters. Only the little finger on the left hand was completely intact.

It shocked me into staring long enough for him to notice me staring, and to react.

"I'm sorry", I said, "I... um... it just..."
"It's okay", he said gently. Used to it.

"Frostbite?" I said, which I was convinced it must have been, trying to think of something to say.
"No..." he said, his face having suddenly drained of life and colour. "I was caught behind enemy lines, in France." At that point I saw the age creep in around his eyes and realised just how old this man must have been. And to my growing horror, how young he must have been back then. "I was captured, and we were beating them, we were pushing them back. They held me while they found an officer who spoke English. They were desperate to find out how many of us there were, and where we would attack from."

The man had changed completely. In the space of two minutes, he had become someone completely different.
"But I never told them."
A tear started to run from the corner of one eye.
"I never told them."

"I never told them. No matter what." I was losing him, losing him to a very dark and joyless memory. One that, evidenced by him saying "I never told them" over and over and the fact that he was shaking, was as vivid as ever.

I was at a complete loss for words, but I tried to fill the sudden void, the sudden gap, the sudden black loss of joy and happiness with something. We discussed the flower shop being broken into, the security guard's penchant for Star Wars novels, and the donut store changing management. He had some interesting gossip about all of the above, but trying as he was to pretend that didn't happen, there was a hollowness in his voice it took weeks for him to lose around me.

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