Let's see...

What am I happy about today?

What am I excited about today?

  • The chance to spend most of the day working on the BBC documentation for karate.
  • Date With Destiny on the Gold Coast in April.
  • 2002 being the year I obtain my black belt in karate.
  • The books I'm waiting for which will provide me with the information I need to assist me in the previous point.

Who do I love and who loves me?

  • My amazing girlfriend... Enough said.
  • My family, who love and support me, even if they perhaps think I've gone "a bit strange" lately.
  • My friends, with whom I share some common goals and dreams.

How does that make me feel?

Blessed, grateful and serene.

We read for a while last night. Then extinguished candle flame with shallow breath and lay in darkness, surrounded by the beautiful sound of rain falling beyond the window. Each drop echoed deep into the night, creating calm static - An invisible melody which sang us to sleep, passing into the realm of dreams, with all the possibilities of rainbows, honey, and upright pianos.

Today's house special

Less than successful dish for poor students
(Inspired by being broke in Finland)

The ingredients:

leftover rice from yesterday
one onion old enough to make Indiana Jones aroused
peanuts
whatever other sorry vegetables you have
soy sauce
one easily gullible friend, whom - you have just realised - you don't love anymore

To prepare:

1. Delegate the peeling of nuts to your accomplice. Advice him as to how to do it right, just like momma used to do it at home. This, of course, is a messy business involving a plastic bag, a club and a large shallow bowl, into which you are supposed to blow to make the peels fly away.

2. Help your friend to clean the peels from his eyes, mouth and nostrils. Tell him to stop being such a baby and try again, this time with his eyes closed and preferably on the outside.

3. Curse your friend, who has just blown most of your invaluable nuts (let's not forget there's nothing else to eat) off the balcony.

4. Peel and chop the onions. This again is a task for your companion. After all, women love to see a grown man cry, don't they?

5. Fry it all in a large saucepan. Start stupidly with the nuts, so that they can burn and give a distinctive 'Hiroshima' flavour for your dish. Listen to your partner pointing out that this is not the way momma used to do it back home.

6. Serve forth and enjoy the clamour, acidic discussion and the resulting inter-apartment civil war.


Now if I only could make him come out of the bedroom to make up and finish the damn thing...

"Everyone's talking in code."
What?
"Nobody's saying what they're saying. They're putting all these flowery phrases and all these metaphors when that's not what they're saying. Why don't they just say what they want to say?"

I'm cleaning out your medicine cup, as you placed it sticky on the cap. I taught you that cold NyQuil is better, and it's always cherry, always. I sit down and try to get through to you again.

Look, there's a lot of hurt there, in places. We hide it different places, we dole it out when we're ready. And, anyways, it's not all pain...
"I didn't say it was all pain. You did. I just think it could be said better."
Well, I use metaphor. I do the same things.
"I wasn't talking about you. This isn't about you. I'm talking about them."
But we are. We are talking about me.


Driving without a stereo in my car reminds me how much it rattles, how unsound it sounds. I know I can just talk to myself, but I don't want to, don't want to have to. I even toyed with bringing the boombox, but I had a cake to buy and wasn't sure what D batteries run for these days. I entertain the thought that if I looked hard enough through all the pawn shops, I'd find my own car stereo, maybe even with the Counting Crows CD still inside. Part of me expects to come home one day and find all 3 TVs gone (two of which can't even be pawned, I found out weeks earlier: too old), all the computer that has been given to me by this kind person or that crudely ripped from the wall. I remember looking with anger at the man passing by me moments after I discovered the car, mumbling to me with a hand-to-mouth gesture toward the last cigarette I had in the world at that moment. I expect anything somedays.

I didn't mention earlier the things that make me angry. I said what made me happy. What makes me angry is this: when someone takes and doesn't give, when they screw me over and by their actions make me colder to other people by default or by association. When someone, by their actions to me personally or someone I love, causes me to lose faith in other humans to not do the same, that makes me angry. When you make me feel and express an emotion I didn't ask for and don't want, when you cause me to take it out on others, that pisses me off.


I had these visions. The end product, always, never the steps in between that really scare us. Coming home and having someone be there, and sharing meals and chores and bills. All the nice things.

This is easy to do. Some people want that and think they can avoid what comes with it, and some people succeed, but not until after long pains and misunderstandings. Some people don't get that even if they put up with everything else. Some people never know what they wanted, or fell into, and others didn't realize they were trapping someone, suffocating them, pushing them away.


I am nine again. I am sleeping with the lights on.

I went out walking one night last week with my walkman on, just to get out of the house. Cigarettes too, and movies. I slipped into the Bookstar and realized my layers of clothes would sweat me out of the normal comfort of flipping books around. Only when I go into a bookstore do all the memories of books I've been wanting slides out of my head like an egg through a collander. And then I realize all that I haven't written, how un-well-read I am. And then I felt this peace, this ease that, yes there was so much unknown out there, so that no, my world cannot fold in on itself, it isn't empty or dry or over. I walked out without so much as a magazine and a little richer in the world.

Today, I went to buy some cat food for my ever-absent roommate's cat, Cedric. The type of food he insists on eating is only available at pet stores, so I visited the closest one at hand.

This store is well known in the gay community of my hometown as being one of the most visible, not to mention successful gay owned and operated businesses in the area. I don't patronize it often myself, having no pets of my own, so this was the first visit I'd made to this particular establishment in probably four or more years. I was initially pleased to see that the store had taken over the shops adjacent to either side of it, torn down the walls, and made a much larger store for themselves, less cramped and better lit, with a wider range of products to purchase.

Pleased, that is, til I got in line to make my own purchase. In front of me were two elderly women, probably in their mid-60s to early-70s. They were purchasing a goodly amount of supplies of a feline nature. Apparently one of the couple had recently adopted a new kitten. Her purchases totalled to more than one hundred dollars and this took the lady making the purchases aback a little bit, so she meekly asked if the pet store offered a senior citizen's discount. This request, I'm sure, was based upon the fact that the store was offering 10% discounts to those people who provided proof that they'd participated either in a local AIDS walk or bike ride.

She was told, derisively it seemed, by the checkout lady, that they did not offer any kind of discounts to seniors, and further explained that senior shoppers of the store usually never asked for discounts, so no discount would be offered.

This, rightly I believe, upset the lady making purchases, who explained she had a gay son and a gay nephew, and was only trying to support them by spending her money at a gay-owned business. She then jokingly asked the clerk if they offered lesbian senior discounts.

This had no impact whatsoever on the impassive clerk, and so the purchase was made at full price, though I overheard the lady tell her friend that this would be the last time she supported this particular business.

Me, ever being the curmudgeonly consumer, though, couldn't let it pass. While I certainly didn't want to tell the clerk (who also was the owner) how to run her business, I did question her a bit as to why a senior's discount wasn't offered when a discount for people who more likely than not would be homosexual was being offered. The response I received, basically, was one of "My store, my rules" and the clerk/owner was so insistent in her stance against a senior citizen discount that I almost called her ageist, but I try to avoid such inflammatory labels, and it would have been mean besides. I did, though, walk out without making a purchase ... after looking pointedly around at the mighty pet empire the gay ... and (probably overwhelmingly) straight ... dollar had helped the owner to build. And bought the cat food at a straight-owned business, and one that does offer a senior citizen's discount.

The experience got me to thinking. Our elders are on the one hand revered and on the other reviled. And yet as a gay man, there's not too many gay men who are elder to me. AIDS did a good job at wiping out a frighteningly-appreciable percentage of gay men older than me. And I realized: I can't turn to them for advice, nor anecdotes of what it was like to grow up gay in an earlier time than I did. I'm bereft of their wisdom, their knowledge, and their experience ... things that would be of great use to many people, but specifically to other gay people. I was overwhelmed with a sense of loss. Valuable experience and knowledge is lost because there's no effective cultural means by which an elder in gay society can pass down their experiences to their juniors. Older gay men and women often do not even associate with their younger counterparts because of fear that one is giving the impression of robbing the cradle. Young people often think the only thing an older gay person wants is their young, nubile body. Intellectual discourse is thus lost, not to mention the ability to pass on cultural knowledge from one generation to the next. This problem will only get worse as I get older and lose even more of the people in generations prior to mine. Those that AIDS didn't wipe out, old age will.

It's a vicious cycle, one that needs to be broken. To that end, I'm going to try and find some gay people in their 60s and older. And just talk to them and appreciate their lives and experiences.

There's nothing "Ching" about this node. Its what happened January 22, 2002 in my life.

They found Andrew last night..

No one had seen him since January 18, 2002. DPS made a welfare call, no answer... They keyed into the room.

I'm sure the odor hit them first, the kind that can mean nothing except the lack of life.

Everyone came. ASU police, Tempe Fire Department, news crews, residents, the director of Residential Life, all the hall directors...... me....

I'm only the lead desk assistant. I am in charge of what happens at our front desk. Andrew was one of my DA's.

Shouldn't I be more emotional? I played worms with the guy, for heaven's sake... He always came on to work the desk after I did on Tuesday nights. "Andrew, you need to forward the mail." "Andrew, your work comes before your computer games and your guitar."

How much the course of your life can just end like that. Sideswiped, overdosed, shot. No choice, no chance, no mercy.. I thank God every day for the life that he has given me, and I pray that I don't lose it to another's mistake, let alone my own poor choices.

............................

Disclaimer!
This is something I needed to write for my own peace of mind. It's not a statement on the military - it's a statement about someone who is incredibly dear to me. Please take it in the day-log manner it was intended.

A quiet evening at home

Last night I looked into my beloved's eyes and listened to him tell me about the first person he ever killed. I listened to him as he told me indescribable things: watching the realization of impending, unavoidable death come over them; watching the soul fade from their eyes; the smell that only death has. I listened to his halting voice as I watched his face crumple and change shape, watched the pain choke him voiceless, watched him come through to the other side of that wasteland and become familiar again.

He said,
"You know, people don't stop and think before they join the military. They join to get training, they join for the G.I. Bill. There are good reasons to join, but those aren't it. They don't realize that they might die for their college education. Or worse, they might have to kill."
"The first one is the hardest. The first one is the one you remember; the one whose face stays in your mind. It's been twelve years and I could draw you a picture of his face. After the first, they all became faceless."
"Killing gets easier and easier. After a while, you look at yourself, and what you are is terrifying."

I know nothing. I have lived through nothing.

i went to hell today again...

sunday, i died. or at least i came so close that the difference is nearly negligible. it scared the living shit out of me.

let me explain: i'm diabetic, and occasionally, when i'm not paying attention i'll suffer from extremely low or extremely high blood sugar. in this case it was low. now, the brain requires to basic inputs to operate -- oxygen and carbohydrates. with low blood sugar, there are only minimal carbohydrates available to the system. so it all came down like this:

i woke up from a nightmare about fighting for my life against some unseen enemy, and i couldn't separate myself from the dream entirely...reaching for the anti-tank weapon that hadn't come out of the dream with me, fighting the conviction that all my bones were broken. i had a clue what was happening, but it was faint, and hard to hold on to. the only food i could see near me when i woke up on the couch was a jar of olives on the coffee table. i tried to open it and eat the olives, but with nearly no muscle control, i only succeeded in flipping the open jar onto the couch, spilling the contents everywhere. then, i had a seizure.

as i lay paralyzed, i could hear the assassin's voice in my head telling me to relax my muscles, which is not easy when you can't breathe. desperate to reach the kitchen, i rolled off the couch and hit the coffee table on the way down, apparently taking the ashtray and a heavy laptop case with me. i realised i could no longer remember where the kitchen was, and the world was spinning at an alarming rate. the distance between my body and the objects around me shifted rapidly and arbitrarily. i got dizzy and nauseous watching the room crawl, but i remembered the phone. if i could get the phone, i could get an ambulance. i found the phone, a portable, and managed to turn it on. hallelujiah! sadly, i could not see well enough to dial. shit. i tossed the phone aside and had another seizure, which filled me with a quiet peace.

the voice of the assassin returned, suggesting i shout for help. as soon as i could breathe, i tried. i could hear my neighbours climbing up and down the stairs, laughing and talking in their apartments. the walls here are paper thin. i remember hearing the couple two doors down have an argument one night. i screamed unintelligibly. unintelligibly? wait...i had been certain there were words, but my mouth wouldn't make the shapes for them. i hoped if i screamed enough, someone would at least come knock. no one did. i screamed for what i believe was almost an hour. i had another two seizures.

during the first i was still trying to scream, and i refused to hear the voice, but during the second i heard him again. "can you get the door open?" he asked. the idea was that if i could lay in the doorway, someone might see me, but when i got the door open, it was too cold, and i was certain i'd die of frostbite before i got help. "fuckers," i tried to say, but what came out was "fuuz..." i realised only i could save me, and i started looking round as best as i could, hitting my head on the floor several times when i got dizzy and fell down from my crawling position. i started cursing like a sailor, trying to get the adrenaline up, thinking it might give me he strength to keep fighting. thankfully i was right.

the miracle came when i fell onto a box of protein drinks i had neglected to put away after i came home from the store the previous evening. i tore the box open and chugged one, cackling like a retarded hyena. i laid down, had another seizure, and then drank another. i laid on the floor and laughed until i could see. then i crawled weakly toward the phone, and called niall. he was having dinner with some girl from out of town, he said, but he'd send clovis, an emt of our acquaintance, to pick up the pieces. i looked at my watch and waited.

clovis and agate showed up at 19:00. looking at the time of a missed call on my caller id, we suspect i came awake to the sound of the phone at 15:15. it had been nearly four hours. not wanting to leave me alone, clovis and agate waited until i stabilized, during which time, niall and his friend showed up, and we all went to a party which involved many waffles. yay, waffles.

see, sometimes this shit does have a happy ending!


i don't care if monday's black...

monday was less traumatic. i went to sleep at 4:30 monday morning, and got up like a gunshot at 6:30. i cleaned my house for several hours, thanking every god i could name that i was still alive. damn, i like being alive. around tennish, i phoned the assassin, and we got into a mad two hour conversation about the nature of death, the oddities of small children (he was babysitting one), and the joys of anthropology. that was oodles of fun. i love talking to intelligent people. especially when i'm alive. i suspect i'd enjoy it less if i were dead.

later, salem and the assassin came over, and we talked about music and people. theoretically we're in a band, or something. salem played keyboard for a while, and then passed it to me. it was a good scene.

i sat up fairly late with the assassin, after salem left, and we talked about music some more, and also about the nature of mankind. i introduced him to the trance mix of beethoven's fur elise. he fell instantly in love with it, much as i had. it is damn good, and i wish i knew what artist was responsible for it. he was joyfully baffled by boiled in lead. if you've heard them, i'm certain you'll agree that that's the correct response. all in all a wild and amazing time.


send lawyers, guns, and money...

this morning, i had to be in the district attorney's office at 10:30. i had a meeting with the defendant's attorney, and my own counsel. i refuse to say anything unpleasant about the defense attorney at this time, but man, catch me when it's all over, and i'll have some words for you. choice words. ::eyebrow_raise:: but until the shit has made it all the way through the fan, i really ought to keep my mouth shut about the proceedings. suffice to say, we are going to trial. i am afraid. i am right, but i am afraid.

I can't figure out if this is cool or weird.

A friend invited me out for dinner last night, and I told him sure but I had to end the night early because I needed to clean my bathroom after. (My mom is coming into town in a couple days, and I don't want her to find out that occasionally I am remiss in my household duties and sometimes live in filth.) So, we did our thing, and he took me to the grocery store so I could stock up on stuff, but then when we got back, I started to put away the groceries and my friend said he had to go to the bathroom. I finished putting away the groceries and started washing my dishes. I was almost finished when he finally emerged from the bathroom. He had cleaned it for me.

Is this weird? A friend randomly cleaned my bathroom. I was glad I didn't have to do it, but . . . well, why would someone do that? He even brought his own cleaning supplies, which means he was plotting this. He cleaned the sink, potty, and tub. I asked him why, and he shrugged and said, "I like cleaning bathrooms." Whee.

He also brought me a very cool gift for my birthday (which was last week). I had recently told him the story of when I was four and someone gave me a huge jawbreaker for my birthday. I remember thinking it was so cool because it was bigger than my fist; there is a photo of me holding it, all sticky. My mom threw it out after I put it down, claiming that it "went bad." I cried for like a really long time because I'd wanted to eat it so badly. My friend bought me one of those. I started licking it today and got a sore tongue. So I broke it with a hammer. Those little pieces are neato.

Well, I haven't noded in a few days. Why? That's simple:

It's nearly impossible to node from a mental hospital!

Now that I've got your attention...

This is the first time I've been able to get my thoughts together enough to write anything and I will hopefully get back to fixing my w/u's and noding new informative write ups, but first I need to get some thoughts out and play a bit of catch-up with school work.

Some of you may know that I cut myself on thursday. Well, I thought I was ok and eventually did go to bed and on Friday morning, as I slept, my mother went through my purse (again). She found the blade that I used. She woke me up and told me she's taking me to the mental hospital to get up right then and to get dressed. I had very little time to get ready and dressed while crying. I didn't grab any clothes...I did grab my backpack and toss my psychology book, a folder of school papers, a pen, a highlighter, a Chicken Soup for the Soul book, and my diskman with half a dozen cds.

My mom told me I have to find a new place to live. I don't know where to even start to look.

Being in a lock down unit of a hospital totally sucked. The food is gross there. (Although for hospital standards it's not really that bad). Nothing was accomplished. We just sit around and watch tv and pace back and forth. I didn't even have clean close to change into until sunday. I felt totally disgusting. But that wasn't the worst part. The worst part was feeling unloved. No one really cares and I had to face that. Suddenly I was alone, without my computer, without E2, without AIM, just the craziness that has become me. Once I was Jennelle. I'm not now. I'm bluebird. We're bluebird.

/me is so scared.....

One of the best days I've had this year, so far, and probably going to remain that way for a long time. I had the most improbable but, rewarding, event happen to me.

My ex-girlfriend, whom I broke up with almost a year ago (sometime during spring 2001), contacted me via IRC, on the very same day that I had had an ADSL box installed at my apartment and, at such late time I was just preparing to hit the sack for a good night's sleep.

I was stunned; I didn't know how to react since our separation had been like a thunderstorm of the century, volcano eruption, earthquake and a tsunami combined. Rather unpleasant and rough, one might say. I did reply to her, though, since I was curious to hear what she had to say.

Not only was this a good thing to do, it was the best thing I could've done.

The conversation started at a rather formal level, asking all the "how have you been? how are you doing now?" etc. questions. Then it got deeper and way more personal - We ended up going through all the bad things that happened towards the end of our relationship, all the hurt, all the naive words and deeds and actions we said and did to each other. Practically, everything we had left unfinished or didn't, at the time, know how to rationally deal with.

Needless to say but, I was crying my eyes out along the way. Not because I would miss the relationship so much or, because I would still be hurt and angry at her but, because all the feelings I had suffocated and buried deep down in my heart, in an attempt to deny and forget, surfaced. What made all the difference was that I finally got the chance to apologize to her for all the hurt I had caused and, realized she too was truly sorry about the bad things she had said and done.

The times when I've felt as relieved as I did after that conversation can be counted with the fingers of a single hand. It was ... I simply lack words for how critically important that particular two-hour conversation was for me and, undoubtedly, to her as well. Finally I'm not afraid to hear about her from our mutual friends. Finally I'm not afraid of running into her somewhere and getting into the awkward situation of not knowing what to say or how to react to her presence. Finally I don't feel like hearing her dating someone else would shatter my world (I know that might sound stupid since I'm already dating someone else myself but, there was so much we needed to discuss, so much hate and regret to be processed and forgiven, so much unnecessary stress and mental burden neither of us needed nor deserved to carry).

I feel redeemed, relieved, and at last there is a real chance we can become the good friends that we couldn't be during most of our relationship as a dating couple.

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