Our Last Days on Earth

2012

Glendale, CA

My travel adventure started when my house flooded and I was displaced to a motel in Glendale, CA. Bordering Los Angeles seamlessly, Glendale’s city center differs from downtown LA in that it is smaller, with a more European vibe, and celebrates consumerism more than business.

One can see the evidence of fickle consumerism in the proliferation of shopping centers. Though the entire downtown area runs on two parallel streets for not more than a few blocks, if you head south every street has a plaza to replace an old one. First there is an old one that almost no one knows about, then there is one of California’s largest malls, augmented across the street by a bigger and wider plaza across the street, but the king of them all is the newly built Americana.

It boasts couture shops, a movie theatre not two blocks from two others, a five star hotel, newly placed statues, a fountain, and constantly heavy traffic. It feels like a super-mall in the middle east. If you’re anxious around crowds you may not want to go here, because the foot traffic is always heavy. Crowds and consumerism would make suicide bombers consider this a prime target.

Anxious to experience culture I went to the oldest building I could find, an old masonic temple across the street that was remodeled to serve as a playhouse. But it was closed, the theatre moved to the city of Pasadena in the east. Now it stands unused.

I pulled the ring on the wooden door and it budged, but stopped–locked from the inside. I peered in the window where I saw a gap in the curtains and saw a girl staring back at me. Myself. Between the arched doorways was a full length mirror, perhaps once used for dancing practice, but now collecting dust.

Let’s consider what is important and useful before we tear it down and build a new mall, adding another strata of consumerism to our world.

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The Parts Left Out (online only)

   There is something I want to write about. I try to write SanSan but picturing it written out sickens me. There is something about writing that is exploitive. (I don’t mean exploitative, at least, I don’t think I do.)
    Ugh! What am I even doing! This whole thing is a waste of time.
    Think about the chance of being published, and what that would mean to you.
    It just isn’t something that I want. It isn’t something against it and I’m sure I’d love the fame and the recognition. Today I was walking by some hedges at the University and I wondered what a person like George r. r. Martin would say to his rivals.
    “I am enjoying the success,” while they, the fellows in arms, toiled away fruitlessly on literary novels of low recognition. Still they could enjoy some success and call themselves “writer” but in the end a place amongst the greats has been reserved for someone else.

Time and luck and stars and birth. That’s all it is. And hard work, dedication, power, wisdom, and courage. That’s where the real reward comes from.

Maybe I am just convincing myself . . . trying to convince myself that this is not a waste of time. I get ideas in my head; so what, who doesn’t? Some of these ideas are so crazy I have no idea what to do with them. I feel like no one believes in dreams.

    What’s the point of all this. Nothing. I don’t know what I’m getting at, but I promised myself I would try. I would try to say something, when nothing is in my heart.
    I don’t know what is an idea, a story. I don’t know what to do with life. Maybe if I went back and read this I would know what it meant. I share myself with no one. I am nothing. I am a cold, dead fish. I am losing my mind. I have lost discipline for anything. I think if I didn’t write on the computer, it would make sense. It is because one can type so much faster, that thoughts are possible to race. And that is why the computer makes it more action packed.
    I don’t want to give up on A Song for Sansa and Sandor but I am pretty discouraged about the lackluster response and also the legal implications. I hate that George r. r. martin does not approve fan-fiction I mean, what an asswipe. Why does he give a shit I mean, it’s not like he is going to go anywhere with them anyway. Everything he writes is like, “This happened no wait–!! It really wasn’t.”
    I don’t know why I like fan-fiction but for some reason it is my favorite genre. I just think the whole thing is fascinating. Even the negative stuff like mary-sue, don’t even get me started if Lord Byron were alive today he would be DEAD.
    But maybe it really isn’t healthy to fall in love with fictional characters. Maybe if we fall in love with fictional characters we will miss out on something. I mean look at me I have no life; I live at home with my parents I have no job and the closest thing I have to a relationship is with my dog. But this is not about me. This is about what to write. What to do with my life. Why do I make that assumption? To do something with my life is to write. Because, I guess, I really don’t know how to do anything else. And even writing I’m horrible at it, I barely even know how to do it and I make intentional grammatical mistakes all the time. Then I am so used to making them, that even when I don’t mean to make them I do and can’t remember the proper way. I guess it is my way of crying out, editors! help me!

Procrastination Poetry

Being high is about believing in yourself.

What is the difference between “sometimes I want to” and “I want to”?

Do you ever wish you left a typo?

Sometimes I feel I am nothing, no one, and other times I feel I am just me.

Water rests on top of

rock, stoned like ice chips, gray

as the clouds they left.

My dog chews my journal.

The one I plan my escort

appointments in.

Oh, Failure!

It’s time to write a poem,

but How? The only way I know

is through meter.

Maybe it’s time to write

a different kind of poem.

The kind where meter doesn’t matter

That would be

What? The only other

thing I know about

is rhyme.  And I’ve already screwed myself there.

Who decides what makes a poem, anyway?

If I hear the susurrus of water

Where are the line breaks in that?

Why do I even try.

On Not Having Money

Every morning, except for some weekend days, the first thing I do after my morning routine is go online and look for jobs. Usually I check Monster.com and Craigslist. I might also do some research to find some companies that I would like to work for in the local area, or fields I am interested in, and check their websites to see if there are any jobs available and apply to them. I’ve found corporate sites to be well-organized and can easily spend a whole job-hunting session on one company’s website, flinging my application around to any position for which I might be qualified.

So far this has gotten me one freelance writing job, rewriting a real-estate brochure for $100. That was back in September of last year. Happy Birthday me.

Am I woefully under-qualified for the position of office assistant or assistant to the assistant editor’s assistant editor? How much begging is one expected to do to be allowed to read the slush pile at a movie studio? A lot, apparently. I entered the job-searching world prepared for difficulties, warned by an alumnus who told me he sent out hundreds of resumes before he got an internship at a publishing company. He was tall, generous, and friendly. I am small, fickle, and a she. Somehow my hundreds of resumes have not made an impression on the people reading them, ergo I have developed a casual attitude towards making my student loan payments.

Finally I developed a suspicion that maybe I had over-estimated my value to society as a recent college graduate. Considering the corruption rampant at my school,  maybe it was not such a surprise that the crop it yielded (me and the other students) was not held in as high regard by our society as I suspected we would be going in to that system. So I returned to my former places of employment, smiling and confident that they would not refuse me, based on the fact they would barely have to train me. I hope you noticed the plural in that sentence.

Well, they didn’t hire me, and this morning started as any other on my long road to job hunting. Because I live with my parents, the $.80 holding up my bank account has little meaning to me (though not, I’m sure, to my credit card provider or their automated withdrawal system), but it doesn’t feel good, nor does it provide for such luxuries as helping my family with groceries. Because really, I am too old to be living here and doing this.

So what is the solution? My dad’s new favorite topic of conversation, beating out the long-time front runner “Mexicans are taking our jobs” is “You don’t want to get a job.” Truly, I am not a Mexican, though I do live in a place considered Mexico by some members of La Raza. Why should I want to get a job? Overlooking the fact that I have tried to get one, including my old jobs, what part of getting paid $8.00/h was so great about it? To work corporate is to give them your life, to the tune of “Pay me what you want and I’ll work however much you need.” I don’t, strictly speaking, have a problem with this, if it’s what you want to do. But I just don’t. Despite the fact that I am currently making $0.00/h, somehow this feels better to me than making other people rich.

There are plenty of jobs I would have jumped at had the opportunity been there. My long-time dream of sorting mail at the post office, working my way up to driver was crushed by the fact that USPS is fundamentally bankrupt. And don’t blame e-mail. Though I wouldn’t make the kind of teacher movies are based on, I would be a willing substitute or even long-term English teacher. Too bad the school system was gutted by the government. To sum up the difficulties of finding work, I would say that it is painfully obvious that culture and education have lost priority to business, finance, and military. There are plenty of military recruiters around, and I did have an offer to become an insurance salesman. I want to tell America, it is not fair that my best job prospects are now overseas. I do not want to go overseas. This is my home. But I guess if they don’t want me here, I shouldn’t stay.

This is a Warm Up

This is just a warm-up exercise to get me to speedier writing. I didn’t tell anyone about this blog because I don’t want my friends to read it. I don’t want my friends to find it. I don’t care if someone reads it and tells me about it later, or we become friends from them reading it, I just don’t want to go publicizing this to the people I know irl. There’s nothing important on here anyway. I used to make a lot of friends online that way, just from being myself, but now it’s hard to make any friends at all.

You’re not supposed to press the delete key in a warm-up, but who cares what you’re supposed to do? I never have. Maybe that’s why I am where I am today. You hear advice from all sides. How do you know which to follow?

Everyone has their own problems and their own life. My problems and my life are my own. I don’t think anyone in the world can empathize with me. Sometimes people know what you mean when you describe a certain part of something you’ve been going through, but they don’t really know you, and they don’t know what it’s like.

My grandma died. My uncle touched me inappropriately. That boy doesn’t like me.

Sometimes the things that bother us the most are the things that are not supposed to bother us at all.

My favorite character in the series died. They forgot to put onions on my burger. I have a pimple.

I am having a rough time of it now for many reasons, one because my little brother tried to kill himself. That’s supposed to bother me the most. I am supposed to be sympathetic and caring, but I am just mad. He woke the dragon, you might say . . . and I am a dragon.

I had a friend who took pills after college, trying to kill herself. Of course she didn’t manage it because she didn’t swallow enough. That’s always the trouble with girls, isn’t it?

See why I don’t tell people about this blog?

I just want to go on record and tell all you would-be suicide victims not to kill yourselves, and to get over this cry-for-help bullshit. What do the rest of us have to do to make you feel loved enough that you aren’t threatening to take yourself out of our lives forever? Roll out the red carpet and bring you breakfast in bed everyday, I imagine. I’d like it if you did those things for me, too, but that wouldn’t be fair, now would it? Life isn’t fair.

Life

isn’t

fair.

Get over it. Seriously. Do you think I like my life? Do you think I like that my greatest ambition is to write fan-fiction and I can’t even do that properly? I can’t even admit that to people. It’s easier just to say the genre the stories I like are in, and say I want to write that. Because you know, saying you want to write doesn’t give people enough reason to give you flak as it is. What a stupid career choice. Writers aren’t born, they’re made, forged on the page and over time and when someone reads it. And that isn’t even you, that’s just something you wrote, like this, some part of your soul you hoped no one would ever see.

I feel like I can’t even talk about this anymore.

I finally wrote a story and thought, this is going to be the one that I post. This one will be good enough that I won’t be mortified by putting my alias on it. The anonymous people of the internet will not shun me, because I have already shunned myself, and posting this will not bring shame upon me. I just want it to be good, okay. I just want you to read this and know some part of how I felt. I don’t care if you like me, or think my story is stupid, and you would probably think I am a loser if you knew me even if you liked the story. But when I read over the story, I was upset with how clinical it sounded. It was like a description out of a science textbook. Where was the emotion? Where was the way I felt imagining this? Where was the rush and pain and love that made me sit in front of my computer for hours and hours, typing and rewriting and polishing and daydreaming and trying to create, to bring to life some kind of feeling that I only knew from inside myself?

It was gone. Or it was still there, inside of me, but I couldn’t bring it out. That’s what it’s like to write; and because I write, can I call myself a writer? All the emotion you are trying to express sucked out by apathy and isolation, distilled to 26 letters rearranged to make words that are supposed to rearrange themselves back into the emotion you were trying to express. And you know no one will ever know how you feel.

And then you get a call from the hospital.

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