Thursday, August 8, 2013


I left your jersey in my hotel room. I couldn't take it with me and I couldn't give it back. So I left it. I draped it over a chair and no, I didn't take a picture.

Funny thing about memory... it turns into what you want it to if you don't have a photo to look at days and months and years later.

I don't want to remember your tragic face and darting eyes. And I don't want to remember anything you said.

The feeling of your hand on my back? The way you spoke into my neck, just behind my ear? Those things I'll keep because they were the candy coating to a pretty crap-filled time in my life.

Find peace, Nebraska boy. 

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Your Plymouth Updates Have Been Pre-empted By NEBRASKA.

I'm in a hotel room in Nebraska right now nursing a pretty decent hangover and wouldn't you know it, the fucking place only has Pepsi. Not. Cool.

I search. I am a searcher. Mostly for who I am, what I'm doing, where I've been and where I'm headed. I still have some very fuzzy lines to fill-in, darken up and make straight. The past 5 years of my life have been filled with some intense moments of revelation and I feel like most of them have come in the last 24 months or so and have hit me like golf-ball-sized-hail-storms.

Yesterday and last night my umbrella got particularly devastated by the elements; so I chucked that shit aside and waited for the sun to come out. And come out it did.

I haven't been here in about 30 years. I left a 14 year old weird-looking, pimply-faced, awkward, insecure weirdo (deliberate emphasis on 'weird'. Maybe that's why I hate that word so much, my stunning husband? Because I so associate it with who I believed I was?). And I left behind wonderful friends who I couldn't have survived that time without their constant companionship, love, laughs and solidarity. We had so much freedom! Thank GOD! I was never home, there to eat and sleep and a lot of the time, my friends were eating and sleeping there, too. We walked everywhere; we were a gang, a family that roamed the streets of Papillion, Nebraska. And before long every inch of it was mapped into our minds.

Yes, we went to school, blah, blah, blah... but we also kissed boys and drank whiskey and smoked pot and talked and talked and laughed and went to the movies and football games and soccer and softball practice. We went to the fair in the summer and the haunted houses in the fall. We sang in the streets and sat around on park benches.

And I, by all accounts from last night's conversations at the 25th high school reunion I flew head-long into, was nice. I was nice. I was a nice person and a good friend and people liked me. People I don't even remember that well remembered me as being nice. It's crazy. It makes me cry. I'm sitting here writing this and the tears are coming like they did last night when the message sunk in: I was nice. I wasn't a snarky bitch. I didn't pick on people. I didn't make people feel bad so I could feel better. It's astounding.

So when did it really kick in? When did the reality of Michele: The Total Fucking Bitch start? Because I know that shit is true, too. As much recent confirmation I've received about my human self, I have plenty of dusty, shitty confirmation of my pure ass-holery-soaked self.

When was the damaging blow struck? How old was I? Where was I? And why? Why wasn't I able to stave it off and kick its ass? It's the only 'me' that I have any historical attachment to so my assumption is that it happened a long, long time ago. Like forever ago. Like first cry=jerk ago. But I guess not. I guess that until I was at least 14 years old, I was nice.

And those wonderful friends I left behind remembered that person like I had never left. We fell into step with out a glitch. We all swear, we make fart/ass/pussy/shit jokes. We love our families and our friends. We drink, we eat good food and we never miss an opportunity to drop a pun, make fun of ourselves or each other. It was miraculous and so much fun.

I'm exhausted. And my flight back to NY leaves soon. 

It's really Important to note that I assumed that everyone but the four core girls in my group of friends were the ones that must have hated me. They must have thought I was a jerk if not all of the time, then most of the time.

I can see myself in that yellow house, in my bedroom under the covers, in the bathroom with the door locked, in the kitchen crouched beneath the counter talking on the phone. Hiding. If they saw me, I’d be in trouble for something, have to do something to repent for the thing I didn’t even know I had done. Oh, god, the yelling. The house always thick with THE LOUD and shrouded in cigarette smoke.

I do remember that my mother would cook sometimes and sometimes my friends would come over and eat with us and because of who she is, she was always very funny and edgy and I think that my friends liked that, thought she was “cool”. I liked that. I made that be the truth on the outside but my heart held it differently and when I found out things this weekend like my mother would drive us places! Would pick us up from the movies! That my mother participated in my life and did more than what she absolutely had to! I was hurtled through space. 

I believed these people (too many with the same stories for them not to be true), but I had no touchstone of my own for those memories. Not until I was reminded of a hilariously, hilarious 8th grade boy joke that was made in the backseat of one of those rides, did a solid line form from the me right now, to the me back then.

The line colored itself in nice and thick and straight and strong and I have it now. And I am letting it take up space and connect me to some of the happiness I must have had in that house, outside of my friends.

Answers are creepy, crawly little things that shape-shift if you don't pin them down and arrange them just so like butterflies affixed to muslin covered boards. 

I'm closer. I have some beautiful creatures fluttering around me. Now if I could just find those fucking pins...