Sunday, November 25, 2007

occupation, lack of it, living alone, cats, tv, capes made from blankets, grilled cheese

(A list of things, not so random, that have taken up space in my brain lately)

I've had the week off from most everything, being literally in between jobs. My new one starts tomorrow, a fact for which I am quite grateful. Not only am I flat broke, I'm also flat bored and flat unambitious.

Don't get me wrong, it was nice to take some time to sit on my biscuit and waste time. But that also means that my motivation for doing things that need to get done, i.e. researching, quintet stuff, practicing trombone, etc., is woefully slim. On top of that, living alone has made me into the world's worst housekeeper, and the piles of things that need attending to reached some interesting proportions this week. That rotting smell in my house? Emanated from a bag of trash I left by the back door and never bothered to actually take out to the bin. Those piles of clothes in my room? Span from laundry I never hung up two weeks ago to things I put on, decided I didn't want to wear, and put on the table instead of hanging back up. And that cat litter issue? Let's...not go there.

I need a roommate. I really need to save the money, regardless of the luxury of walking around half naked, leaving dishes in the sink for days, and having my personal effects scattered wherever I felt the need to drop them. I hope I can adjust should the heavens smile and grant me someone with $500/mo and utilities to spare.

Cats. Other people's cats, meh. My cats? Awesome. The only complaint? I think my back is self-destructing because of the effort of sleeping around two cats who insist on moving toward the middle of the bed gradually as the night progresses. I walk up contorted, sideways on the bed, and cold because the majority of the extra blanket falls under the surface area of two very greedy, very long and stretchy, felines.

But they're nice to curl up with, especially when all the factors for Extreme Laziness are in play and I've just received two discs of season 4 of the Gilmore Girls and have all afternoon to kill watching them. Kitty 1 takes the place by my back, and Kitty 2 wraps around the laptop looking sweet and edible. They swap places occasionally.

Of course, 7 solid hours of Gilmore Girls means I'll stumble out of that coma like a drunk stumbles out of an alleyway, a blanket draped over me like a cloak. The words spilling out of my mouth will make little sense but I will find them hilarious nevertheless. I will call a friend and babble. I am not insane. Yet.

And no matter how much other, more reasonably healthy and perishable food I have in the kitchen, I will make sure to grill at least two cheese sandwiches and then spill tea all over myself, because I am amazing.

So amazing.

Friday, November 23, 2007

okay, let me clarify

The last post was obviously one of those heartbreak-ridden moments where whatever you're saying, it's so true, so deep, so in-the-moment, that you don't think you'll ever get over yourself.

What happened was, for this forum, basically a simple case of two people who wanted different things. The details and emotions involved are not appropriate to put up on the web, of course. Shit happens. It's hard to get other people to want what you want sometimes, it's hard to get people together in general, it seems.

In the inbetween time I found myself struggling with this idea that it wasn't so much the failure of this particular relationship to get to me, but rather the way in which I felt like it was my fault. My lack. My baggage.

Fuck that shit.

(see, now I'm angry. The conversation I had with M made me feel the above- like I had failed to listen properly or note the signs of incompatibility- a valuable lesson, in part, because it made me more aware of what I wanted. But talking with L had the benefit of making me see what WASN'T my fault, what was in fact a critical lack of what I needed on the part of the other person.)

I am this open, free, understanding and generally awesome person because I have chosen to be. I have some fears, but they don't deal with intimacy, relationships, or emotional attachment. I can balance my needs and my wants with my disappointments and my failures.

I think I deserve someone who is the same way.

(You will forgive me for assigning blame. I'm looking for resolution, for the strength to move forward and be my own person again. I've worked hard to be who I am, and while I may not always be so clear about what I want, I'm not afraid of it. I go in for self-examination so that I can be better in the long run, for myself and for others. I have experiences that are unique both to me and to my age. I am tired of fooling around with people who have not made it to the same place as me.)

And that, I think, is the long and the short of it. Negotiations with people are always tricky. I watched Lost in Translation last night because it has some of the emotions in it that I am feeling- that no one will ever understand you quite the way you want them to, that feeling lost is a part of growing up no matter how old you are, that sometimes, it's just not the right time, or it is, and you can never tell until the end of it.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

untitled, unhappy

TIme for a little honesty.

I want someone who will look me in the eyes and know, without doubt, how I make them feel and how they feel about me. I want to know again what it's like to dive in, open-hearted and open-minded, into whatever adventure someone has agreed to go on with me. I want to be with someone whose love makes me stronger, faster, better, clearer, and smarter. I want to listen carefully to what they are telling me, to read between the lines and find happiness, to take time to understand what is in front of me. I want to be touched, and held, and loved. I want to feel every ounce of me matched for every ounce of my opposite, and not found wanting.

I don't want to play games, or play the fool, or cry uncontrollably in my car because I feel like everything romantic I've ever tried to do has been, in some way, a complete disaster. I don't ever (EVER) want to hear the words 'it just doesn't feel right' applied to me again. EVER. I don't want to be teased, or toyed with, or jerked around. I don't want to be afraid and I don't want to cause fear. I don't want to be friends. I don't want to be consoled.

I won't.

I am tired of false starts and uncertainty. I am tired of dreaming, of losing sleep, of signifying nothing. I am tired of being hurt. I am tired of going to bed alone.

Until then, I will be heartsore, I will be angry, I will be proud and wounded. Until then, whenever that may be.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

and just like that, the clouds parted

Lessee...let's review the anxieties of the last few weeks.

There's the quintet issues, which are moving forward. We have a tuba player lined up, all that remains is getting said person moved out here and rollin'.

There's the job, which I'm now officially cleared to start. My first day is next Monday.

There's Red Circle, at which my last day was Saturday.

There's money issues, which are being slightly relieved by a few well-timed gigs.

And there's the mountain, which I have climbed.

Friday, November 16, 2007

friday random ten

Open you MP3 player, select random, blah blah blah.

The "I won't cheat while I'm eating breakfast and skip the classical tracks" Edition

1. Mahler Symphony No 2: Mvt 2: Energisch bewegt- Leonard Bernstein and NYP
2. The Chimbley Sweep - The Decembrists (sheesh, that transition scared the crap out of me)
3. Meyer Concert Duo: Mvt 4 - Josh Bell and Edgar Meyer
4. Basketcase - Green Day
5. Kamikaze - PJ Harvey
6. Fight Test - The Flaming Lips
7. Cigarette - Ben Folds Five
8. I Want A Little Sugar In My Bowl - Nina Simone (timely, Nina, thanks so much)
9. Laura Laurent - Bright Eyes
10. Prokofiev, Cantata for Alexander Nevsky: Alexander's Entry Into Pskov - Leonard Slatkin and STL

Rounding it out with the Leonards, Nice!

As long as we're on the subject of mixes, my annual holiday mix is in the works, and if you're not on Facebook giving me your particular info so you can receive one, please leave a comment with your desires so notated.

Monday, November 12, 2007

do you have any idea

How badly I want to do this?

I <3 Top Gear.


One of the things I dislike the least about working at Red Circle (although let's be completely honest, it isn't that bad of a job. It pays well and they are respectful of the hours I need to work, not to mention the fact that I'm kind of a whiny asshole sometimes) was the ever-important Speed Score. Those of you who've worked in retail probably know what I mean. You log into your register, you start checking someone out, and meanwhile the computer keeps a timer. At the end of the transaction it tells you if you did G or R (no one has been satisfactorily able to explain to me what R stands for. This enigma throws into serious doubt the true meaning of G, as well. In fact, I wonder if has anything to do with the fact that my gas tank, instead of an E for empty, has a R for...Refill? Replenish? Risky driving on so little gas? When the tank is full it says 1/1. This never fails to make me laugh). Over time, the computer keeps tabs of all your scores and gives you a percentage of how well you are doing. So, get 3 Gs and an R and your overall speed score will be a 75%. I won't go into the general unfairness of the computer's continuing to time you after you have scanned the customer's items and pressed 'total'. Some people just take for friggin' ever to pay and I don't see why I have to suffer for it.

At any rate, the powers that be like to keep tabs of your Speed Score and record it down, thus creating a log of your overall performance. So once a week or so a manager will come up to 'discuss' my SS, which basically means I'm told my averages for the week and the month. Since anyone with half a wit could do this job, my averages are generally very high, well into the 90s. When I started working there, I tended to think of cashiering under a timer as a sort of boring-ass, incredibly easy video game. Since they've begun updating me on my weekly and monthly averages, it's become more and more like high school. I'm reminded of all the classes I took that didn't resemble my upper-middle class white upbringing, like Typing and Health. Whereas I had to mildly work hard to get As in AP Bio and Calculus, in those non-college rated courses I could guarantee doing the least amount of work in order to fluff up my GPA.

Of course, that never stopped me from having hurt pride when I discovered that I'd gotten a B in Economics. A B!! In Economics! WTF? It's the same pride that smarts when the computer issues me an R and drops my score into the 80s. Not to mention that Red Circle wants your average score at any time to be an 88 or above. Wow! In the real world, you have to be Above Average!

I'm not applying any of this pride to my distinctly abysmal Credit Score. I have gotten all of two credit applications while working in my two months there, and one of them, today, was handed to me in the form of the customer just up and asking to apply. There's a mild incentive in the way of $50 if you manage to get lucky enough to ask a Secret Shopper if he or she wants to apply, but I've yet to thing those odds are good enough for me to be extracting energy from my already dwindling moral compass to sacrifice myself to the gods of credit. I know, I could be out stealing car batteries instead, but ethically we're looking at about the same amount of bad karma.

Thinking about this today got me wondering about my decision to become a professional musician, a career that requires a certain amount of achievement to be successful. Am I truly destined for this path in music or am I attracted to it because, unlike most other things in life, I actually have to work my ass off for it? I mean, I could just as easily do something else I enjoy but also have to work hard to be successful in, like writing, you know? I just get the feeling that I wouldn't be as happy working as something that offers me easy recognition and general skill but isn't nearly as challenging. It's the same difficulty in being satisfied with a cashiering job where I mastered all the speed tricks and made up a few of my own in the first week of work. It was entertaining for that week, but after that...

I guess that means it's time to go practice.

adding another web application is just as good as making a new friend, right?

Here's my Twitter page. Because I want all 6 of you to know what I'm doing even when you don't really give a shit.

Saturday, November 10, 2007


It's hard to be sad on a day when Wisconsin football gives Michigan an enema on Badger home turf. This much is true. It is a little shining light in this otherwise no-good, rotten, all around bad day.

I guess I'll just take what I can get at this point.

last november

Last November was the month Ben and I became friends. This November we find ourselves thousands of miles apart, just when I need someone to lean on the most. I miss you, Ben. I miss sitting on the couch with my head on your shoulder and your friendly comfort keeping me upbeat. I miss getting you drunk and bitching with you about everything and anything. I miss being a part of a friendship that everyone recognized as unstoppable and unshakable.

Last November I was getting to know Leah as well (Happy birthday lady). This November we're far apart too, just when I need someone to take me out and make me shake my booty for whomever- even if it's just for myself. I miss the random hysterical moments and the long serious chats. I miss how you taught me not to take myself so seriously and how you talked sense into me regardless of how shitty things were.

I miss the both of you, the three of us together, because I've never been in a friendship group so amazing as ours. It had its issues, sure. It had its jealousies and insecurities just like anything else. But for the most part- could anything change the way we took on Denton and made it our own? What couldn't we do? We had everything at our fingertips and more just by the very virtue of being there for each other.

Sometimes I can't imagine how I ever lived without the two of you, although I know I did just fine. Trouble is, now I'm having a hard time. Now. Living in the now without being able to call one or both of you up and arrange a meeting at the Greenhouse or a trip for lunch somewhere, or just have you over for a movie...Now. Is not working.

I guess I'm okay. No, I'm just fine. But I miss you. Is that clear? Heh, I didn't think I'd said it enough. Everything's fine. Everything's always

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

all these things that i've done

Hello B'Stewers.

Here's the news from the Burque as it stands:

1. I have been offered not one, but two jobs working for the county! I chose the one that is full-time and has benefits, even though it was not my favorite actual job of the two choices. But I need money, and health care, and these things are good. I will be basically helping to develop and run recreational programs at a community center in a little foothills town east of here. I am very excited! I don't know when I start yet because they have to do all the background check stuff. I put in my two weeks at Red Circle and my last day will be Nov 17th. Hurray for that! No Black Friday, regular days of work, and a non-corporate job!

2. I spent a ton of money at REI today... but! New hiking boots, and cheap outdoor gear, these things are good. Emily is visiting this weekend so I will get to break in the new shoes.

3. Yay! Emily!

4. I have Leopard on my Mac now. It is awesome.

5. Translate the following from the original boy: 'Yes, I like you too.' (short pause) 'I really need to go to bed now.'

6. Speaking of that, RAWR. Lorn horny. Lorn lonely. Lorn like boy. Lorn like boy an awful lot. Lorn lack patience and calm.

7. Cats are funny about bags and boxes. This shit could entertain me for hours.

Friday, November 02, 2007

friday random ten: the 'holy fuck, my house is freezing!!' edition

Haven't done one of these in ages, but you know the drill: Fire up your music player, hit random, and list the first ten songs that come up.

1. New Year's Prayer - Jeff Buckley
2. Satan is My Motor - Cake
3. Karma Police- Radiohead
4. Gone for Good - The Shins
5. Never There - Cake
6. Alason, Crooked River - Sufjan Stevens
7. Two Little Girls- Ani Difranco
8. Untitled - The Nields
9. Georgia, Georgia - Elliot Smith
10. I Didn't Know About You - Theolonius Monk

And because Friday is also traditionally Catblog day, here is a timely picture of Nikolai channelling his inner demons and accosting my friend's pumpkin.