Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Correction Rejection and Repetitive Inflection

Sometimes I wonder about many things. Little things. Big things. Medium sized things. All sorts of shapes and sizes and textures and colors of things. Wacky things. Tacky things. Things. In general. I wonder quite a bit. But today I started thinking about common sensical sorts of things.

So. It is Tuesday morning. Afternoon actually. But for some reason it sounded better to say morning. But it was afternoon. Tuesday. So I understand that sometimes folks are a bit off. Because it is only one day after Monday. And Monday can be difficult. At least those individuals for whom Monday is actually Monday. And therefore Tuesday is actually Tuesday. For some Monday is actually Thursday. Or Saturday. Maybe even Tuesday. But for me. Monday is Monday. And Tuesday is Tuesday. So it's Tuesday afternoon and I am returning a call to an employee at a local correctional facility that shall remain nameless.

So I call the number that I think is this individual's direct line. But it isn't. Instead I get some weird recording. This means that I must now call the main number.


I HATE calling the main number. Do you know what happens when you call the main number. Well I will tell you. You get to talk to whomever answers the main number who does not want to speak with you or help you or provide you any information or know anything you want to know anyway.

I have called the main number before. And the main number is ALWAYS bad. But at this particular correctional facility it is particularly bad.

But wait. I almost forgot about option two. Option two at this particular main number permits you to enter the first three letter corresponding numbers of the person's last name whose extension you desire and it will provide you with said extension. Excellent. I am excited. So I call. Press two. Enter the proper numbers corresponding to letters. And wait.

Nothing. Damn. Maybe I mis-dialed. I try again. Crap. It isn't working. I must speak with the main number operator.

As previously stated the main number is bad. And speaking with the main number operator is mind numbing. It is enough to make you want to get all Helter Skelter on someone's ass. Let me provide an example.

Main Number Operator: NAME OF FACILITY, is this call in reference to an inmate?

Little Ol' Me: Actually no. I am calling from a law office in Seattle and I need to speak with someone about gaining access to the facility to visit a client.

Main Number Operator: [silence]

Little Ol' Me: Hello?

Main Number Operator: [more silence]

Little Ol' Me: So uh...can you transfer me to whomever I am supposed to speak with about that? Maybe?

Main Number Operator: Is this call in reference to an inmate?

Little Ol' Me: Well not exactly you see I just need to...

Main Number Operator: Inmate's name please.

Little Ol' Me: Well I need to visit our client. His name is ENTER NAME HERE.

Main Number Operator: How can I help you?

Little Ol' Me: I work for a law firm. ENTER NAME HERE is our client. I need to visit him so that he can sign some documents. I need to know who to speak with to obtain access to the facility.

Main Number Operator: Is this call in reference to an inmate?

And you all know that I am prone to occasionally bouts of exaggeration. But I am not exaggerating. This actually happened. I had to call three times and finally I was transferred to the Warden's secretary who was able to direct me appropriately. In case you were wondering, she was quite helpful, but it is a challenge to get anyone to transfer you to her directly.

So this time the conversation was a bit different. It sounded like this.

Main Number Operator: NAME OF FACILITY, is this call in reference to an inmate?

Me Again: Uh no actually. I'm calling from a law office in Seattle and I need to speak with UNNAMED EMPLOYEE. And I'm hoping that you could please give me his direct extension as well. I was unable to obtain it by using the touch tone directory. I must be butchering his name.

Main Number Operator: No. You said his name just fine. That's how it's pronounced.

Me Again: No. I mean that I must be misspelling it when I type it into the touch tone directory that is supposed to provide me with the extension number. Does he spell it like this: LETTER-LETTER-ANOTHER LETTER-LETTER-LETTER-LETTER?

Main Number Operator: Yes.

Me Again: Odd. I am not sure why it didn't provide me with the extension. Can you provide me with that information please.

Main Number Operator: Ma'am I am not allowed to give out extension numbers.

Me Again: Oh. But you have a directory that I can access if I know the spelling of the last name.

Main Number Operator: Ma'am I am not permitted to give out that information.

Me Again: Okay uh. Can you please transfer me to his extension?

Main Number Operator: Well he's gone for the day.

Me Again: Does he have voice mail?

Main Number Operator: Yes.

Me Again: Could you please transfer me to his voice mail?

Main Number Operator: Hold on one moment ma'am.

Me Again: [holding on]

Main Number Operator: Still there?

Me Again: Uh huh.

Main Number Operator: Is this call in reference to an inmate?

Me Again: Uh...you were going to transfer me to UNNAMED EMPLOYEE'S voice mail.

Main Number Operator: He's gone for the day ma'am. Do you want me to transfer you.

Me Again: Yes please.

Now. Given the above two examples, I could say a great deal about the folks who answer the main number. Maybe they only hire people with zero short term memory. Perhaps everyone working there has some sort of head injury. But what really gets me is that this guy would not give me this particular employee's extension number EVEN THOUGH THEY FREAKING HAVE A "PUSH TWO FOR A DIRECTORY OF EXTENSIONS" option when you call.

So. If I am fortunate enough to be able to spell the last name appropriately. And the moon and the stars are aligned properly. And it isn't a Monday Wednesday or Thursday afternoon. Then maybe just maybe I can freakin' push two and enter the information and get a freakin' extension number. But otherwise I am shit out of luck. And I have to deal with. The freakin' lack of common sense having main number operator.

And what is it with this "is this call in reference to an inmate" question. I mean isn't virtually every call in some way shape or form in reference to a freakin' inmate. It's a damn correctional facility. What else could I be calling about.

I suppose this could be a personal call for UNNAMED EMPLOYEE but then I would probably have his direct freakin' extension.

Unless of course he was not permitted to give it out.

Sunday, February 26, 2006

Random Analysis on the Verge of Mental Paralysis

I have been feeling a bit out of sorts as of late. And perhaps it is a combination of various life things. However. I feel as if I am on the verge of something. But I don't know what.

Sometimes I am four years old again. And I am calling my father at the Eagle's Club where he spent the overwhelming majority of his time sitting on a bar stool drinking screwdrivers or cheap scotch. By the time I was four years old I had memorized the telephone number. And I would call and beg and attempt to bribe him to come home. And he would always say that he was on his way. But he never really was on his way. So I sat. And waited. Waited and waited some more. And I mean really. It is not like I had anything else better to do. I was four. But that is the kind of crap that sometimes stays with you and occasionally wreaks havoc on your psyche in various unpleasant ways later in life.

In other words. I have been weird lately. And in said weirdness I have been feeling all sorts of things that I do not particularly want to be feeling. And I think that perhaps we do not always admit those times in life when we are feeling weird. So I'm admitting it. Because I think that maybe we should. Sometimes I think that we. And by "we" of course I really mean "I" but it is much easier to speak in the collective "we" so I will. Sometimes I think that "we" fail to talk about these sorts of things. Because we feel that everyone else in the collective we might have some sort of feeling about whatever it is we are saying that we do not really want them to have in the first place. And then we will feel even worse.

Or worse yet. We imagine all of this to be true. And it isn't.

So we just don't really say anything. Sometimes perhaps we say something. But it is often not enough. And I am incredibly guilty of this chip-on-the-shoulder-I-can-handle-anything mentality. Because quite frankly I can handle most anything. But maybe my silence isn't always such a great idea. So I'm trying something different.

And let me just say. Because I want to give credit where credit is due. My dear friend Trouble often says things that are at times shocking. Surprising. Awe inspiring. Scary. Weird. And what I have realized about many of the things that she says is that sometimes they are the kinds of things that we are all thinking anyway. Or they are the kinds of things that we have thought at some particular point in time. Maybe they are things that we eventually will think in the near or distant future. Nevertheless. She says these things. Out loud. Things that most people would never ever utter in a crowded room.

Of course sometimes she is just weird. But I love her anyway. Seriously. There are many things that we never say. Or rarely say. And I know this because people tend to say things to me that I think they would not otherwise say in crowded rooms. But I usually never say very much in return. However. Trouble has the courage to say many of these generally unspoken things. And therefore I must give her props for her willingness to put her self out there in the world. Her whole self. Her entire beautifully imperfect as fuck self. Which I love and admire and respect in so many ways. So. Maybe we should all be a bit more like her. Maybe this is what life and the development of true intimate relationships is really about.

Or maybe I am just fucked up right now.

And sometimes the fucked up-ness manifests itself in qualities that I otherwise appreciate about myself. But said qualities occasionally are not so appreciated. Let me provide an example. So. Most of you know. And if you do not. I will tell you. I am incredibly analytical. Sometimes ridiculously so. About every fucking little thing. I would like to think that I am not. Yes. I would like to think that I am this free spirit artistic sort of person who is overflowing with spontaneity. And sometimes I am. But more often I am logical and analytical and...well...boring. I can analyze anything to death and I often do. In fact. I can even analyze my own analysis. I have been trying to slow my roll with respect to analyzing shit as of late. And I must give myself a bit of credit in this regard. Because I have been doing a pretty damn good job. But every once in a while. Some of that shit that I really do not want to be analyzing just creeps back in. Fuck.

Maybe I just need more iron.

Or maybe I just need to admit the fact that sometimes. And often for no apparent reason. I feel doubtful and insecure and abandoned and unsure of myself and everything. Sometimes I feel as though everyone else has all of the answers and I am left wondering how to solve the equation on my own. And perhaps for some reason. This is one of those times. And I just need to confess this to the entire fucking world. That right now. I am feeling weird. Somehow. Some wire in my brain got tripped and set in play this reel to reel memory for me to re-experience. And it is not about now. But then. Even though it isn't always easy to determine what it's all really about anyway.

And sometimes these sorts of things are difficult to figure out. I have been spouting off a great deal as of late about the importance of knowing your own worth. But I must wonder if my focus has been too much theory and not enough praxis on the subject. And this is not about anyone else. This is about me. Mememememememe. And some more me. With a side of me. For I am the only one who can truly know my own worth. And the only one who can accept no less payment than the price tag indicates.

So. I have been. Sort of. Weird lately.

And I have been thinking about all sorts of things. In fact. I have been thinking about thinking about how I am feeling about things. Or how I might be feeling about feeling about things. Not thinking about what I am feeling. But thinking rather. About what I might be thinking about what I might be feeling. So before I am even feeling. I am thinking.

Makes sense doesn't it.

Exactly. Now you know why I have been. Sort of. Weird. Lately.

Even I do not understand what the hell I am talking about. But perhaps that is the way it has to be. Perhaps sometimes we have to be sort of weird. And not know what the hell we are talking about. And while we're all at it we might as well inform the whole fucking world about our weirdness.

As if you didn't already know that I was sort of. Weird.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Jacked Open Like a Vehicle with a Flat Tire in Need of Changing In Two Part Harmony

I had a medical appointment today. And I should probably say that I began writing this post yesterday. So today actually should have read tomorrow which would have been today. Now. Had I written tomorrow it might have been confusing because said appointment would have already occurred by the time you have read this post. Yet I feel that I had to begin writing prior to said appointment. But you are reading after said appointment. Because today is tomorrow.

I hope this isn't getting confusing.

Anyway. Let me explain that I began writing this post prior to said appointment due to the fact that I was a bit freaked. And said freakage occurred due to the fact that said appointment was "one of those" medical appointments. The kind where you drop your underpants and climb up on the examination table. The kind of medical appointment where you will inevitably be told to "scootch down" with you rear-end hanging of said table. That very special medical appointment in which you will be cranked open with cold metal and examined from the inside out.

Yes. So today. Which is in fact today and not yesterday or tomorrow. Today I had such an appointment. And I should say that I was a bit overdue in getting all of my internal plumbing checked out. So I begrudgingly picked up the telephone and made the call last week.

But it is one of those semi-unpleasant things. Perhaps not as unpleasant as having foreign soldiers bomb one's country for the purpose of "liberating" the people residing within its now defunct boundaries. But unpleasant never the less. Yet sometimes you must do things that are unpleasant. So I made the decision. And decided. That I was going.

So. Tomorrow. Or yesterday. This morning in fact. Which is today. On freakin' Valentine's Day. Such an internal plumbing check appointment was actualized. And really. What else could I do to show myself some love.

Actually. I could think of at least thirty-seven other things that I could have been doing tomorrow...er today...or any other day for that matter to show myself some love. And I assure all of you that none of said thirty-seven things involve a cold metal speculum inserted into my INSERT FAVORITE NAME FOR SAID SPECULUM INSERTED PART HERE.

Interesting side note. Quite some time ago it was brought to my attention that there are human beans out there in the world who rather enjoy speculum play of the sexual variety. As far as I am aware I have yet to meet any of said beans. But there is a great deal that I do not know about many of you so anything is possible. Personally. Given my distaste for the gynecological examination I cannot imagine finding this arousing. But if that sort of thing butters your biscuit who am I to judge.

However. My dear friend Franchina once told me about an "electro-shock speculum" she saw in a sex shop in NYC. And I must say that seems a bit extreme. Now this is not to say that I am not open to extremes or extremities. But given that I do not want my sexual partner to jack me open as if I were vehicle with a flat tire in need of changing in the first place. I cannot imagine wanting to be jacked open and then have said jacked open parts shocked with some unknown quantity of electrical voltage.

But that is just me.

So it is now truly tomorrow which is of course today. And somehow. I survived. And I suppose I knew that I would survive. But since anything can happen at any time I thought I should tell you all that I did in fact survive. I was not crushed by a falling meteor. Nor was I struck by a poisonous dart. And this is good for you to know because these things can and do happen.

But I digress.

So. I arrive and pay the twenty dollar co-payment in return for the pleasure of being violated with a cold metal object and swabs or sticks or other scraping devices.

Maybe that was too graphic. Sorry.

Where was I. Oh yes. I have assumed the position. And what can you really do when your rear-end is hanging off of an examination table and you are cranked open with your innards exposed and completely unable to move. I believe that any situation calls for the requisite amount of polite conversation. Even one such as this.

So Michelle...

Yes I call my physician by her first name. Why you ask. Well if you are going to be sticking cold metal objects and fingers and eyeballs and sticks and twigs and swabs and spatulas and other scraping devices inside of my INSERT FAVORITE NAME FOR SAID SPECULUM INSERTED PART HERE then I believe we ought to be on a first name basis.

So Michelle...


How are things.

Good. Except I kind of have to pee.

Can you hold it?

I think so.

Good. Because I don't mean to be insensitive but I'd rather not be left like this ya know.

I can dig it.


So after a bit of cold metal and cranking and jacking and fingers and eyeballs and swabs and sticks and twigs and spatulas and spoons and such I was given a pat on the back and a moist towelette -- similar to one that an individual might be given at a Bar-B-Que restaurant -- and delightfully informed that everything is in fact peachy keen. Therefore. I was free to go and be on my merry little way.

And perhaps you think that the story ends here. Alas. It does not. I arrive at my office and Attorney Number One attempts to engage me in a discussion of necrophilia and midgets.


And I am wondering if there is some way to avoid having this conversation at this particular moment in time. For quite frankly I would much rather discuss something pertaining to a different topic.

Unfortunately I was not entirely successful in thwarting his efforts. I realized my lack of success in said thwarting when it became apparent that he was following me into the restroom. And continuing his diatribe on whatever it was he was actually saying about said subject. To which of course I was not paying the least bit of attention. He is continuing on and on and I am standing inside the restroom door. And he is continuing his banter to which I would typically provide an eye rolling response. That is of course. Until he realized that he had one foot in the restroom and that this was perhaps not the best place to continue such a discussion.

One point for me.

And for some reason that I cannot explain. Numerous people have since wished to provide me with more information than I wanted them to about their sexual and/or gynecological issues today. And I did not mention said appointment. But perhaps they could somehow sense that I had only moments ago returned from "on of those" medical appointments. And therefore they somehow felt this was some sort of bonding experience.

Nevertheless. After the aforementioned necrophilia-midget debacle I was forced to listen to a variety of information on the following subjects. None of which I encouraged. Yeast Infections. Personal Lubricant. Menopause. Hormone Replacement Therapy. IUDs. Breast Self-Examination. Ovarian Cysts. Pregnancy Tests. Thankfully I did not have to have a conversation about the Vaginal Contraceptive Foam. It might have sent me over the edge.

However. I do believe that I may require immediate assistance from one of you lovely individuals out there in the world. Please. Send reinforcements.


Wednesday, February 08, 2006

The Left Breast Might be Dangerous Weapon in the Wrong Hands

I am going to get right to the point. Not something I typically do. But I have no witty segue for this post. So here we go.

Today my boss touched my breast. And I am wondering if now might be a good time to ask for a raise.

So. I guess I should explain. Because I know that some of you are shocked. Some of you are horrified. More than a few of you are laughing uncontrollably. And surely at least a couple of you are sort of turned on by this announcement.

So let me make certain that there are no misunderstandings. Because I would not want any of you to think that I need a referral to a good sexual harassment law firm. Or that there is some sort of hanky panky going on with my boss. Let me reiterate in case you were reading too quickly. Because I know some of you skim these postings. Not that I can really blame you. But I would not want you to miss the point of this particular post. I am NOT fucking my boss. And I do not want to be. Everything is fine.

Maybe I should just tell the story. Although I have this feeling that no one ever believes the real story of the boss touching the breast. I suppose it is too late now. So I might as well just continue. And hope for the best.

Attorney Number One comes into my office. I can already tell he is feeling a bit left out today. He is sort of needy and this sometimes happens. And today he is on the verge of sulking because I am not paying attention to him. Rather I am working. This is what I have heard I am supposed to do while I am at work. I suppose this is why they call work "work" and not something else like "salami" or "vacation" or "breast touching" or something else entirely.

So the man enters my office with a rather large binder in hand that I do not particularly want to see let alone have in my office. But he is here. In my office. And so is the binder. I know that he wants to give me said binder. And if he wants to give me said binder it is because he wants me to do something with said binder. And I suppose I do not really mean that he wants me to do something with said binder. But he will more likely than not want me to work some miracle regarding said matter contained in said binder. And I probably will not even need the binder anyway. But I can already tell that I do not want to do anything with it. I do not want it. Because I have more than my fair share of binders in my office.

Wait. I just re-read that and I feel like I need to pause for a moment. This is not some vague attempt to have you all read between the lines. There is no wink wink nudge nudge implied. I swear I am referencing an actual binder. You know. Made of plastic. Three metal rings. It secures documents that have been three hold punched. You can find such a binder at any office supply store. I am not speaking of anything else. There is no innuendo here. Binder. That is all. Just a simple three ring binder.

So where was I. Oh yes. I have a great many binders in my office already. I do not need another binder. And when I say I have a great many binders in my office I am not even including the plethora of reference binders in my office. For I have a great many reference binders as well. Binders that read "Resource Information" and list the various topical resource materials contained within said binder. I have binders that are labeled "DRUG" and "Domestic Violence" and "SEX" and "False Confessions" and so on and so forth.

And no. You cannot borrow my resource binder labeled "DRUG" or the one labeled "SEX" and you should know better than to even ask such a question. Trust me. You would not find it very interesting. It just is not that kind of party. Promise.

At any rate. I have an overwhelming number of binders. Both resource and otherwise. And the man is walking into my office with yet another binder. Great. One more to add to the pile. More things to add to the list of things to do and I haven't done but probably should have done a long time ago. More more more.

He is pontificating about something related to this particular binder. And I am admittedly not paying attention. He realizes this and then attempts an alternate tactic in which he strategically places said binder on my desk directly on top of the materials I am currently working on. Sigh. So now I have no choice but to stop working on said materials that I was working on and listen to whatever the fuck he has to say that I do not want to be listening to in the first place. Sigh again.

Fine. I am listening now. See. Listening. Well. Sort of listening.

And then. It happens. Because my office is rather small. There isn't a great deal of room. It is pretty well full of stuff. Maneuvering in this small space can be challenging at best. And it is important to note that said individual is incredibly animated. My office is most certainly not wheelchair accessible. Or accessible to those overly animated folk. In short. Three people in my office at the same time is semi-obscene.

So it happens. I am sitting at my desk. And he is speaking. About something that I am only half-assed paying attention to. And he is being his typical overly animated self. And. So. I feel this hand. And it is really too late to do anything. I feel this hand. Just barely graze the left side of my left breast.

It was kind of like that scene in Dirty Dancing where Patrick Swayze does that running of the hand thing grazing the breast move on Jennifer Gray. Except it wasn't hot. And now that I have had two and three quarters of a second to think about it. It wasn't hot in Dirty Dancing either. But that's probably because of the whole Patrick Swayze and Jennifer Gray thing. Maybe it would be hot if it was someone other than Patrick Swayze and someone other than Jennifer Gray.

So. Most of you know that I work in an insane office. I am used to strange things happening. So the whole grazing the left side of the left breast thing. Well. I don't really think much of it. It was one of those things. He barely touched me. And it was completely unintentional.

Now. Let me just say this. Because I know what you are going to say. You are going to tell me that he just wanted me to think it was unintentional. And I will have to tell you that you are wrong. I know this man. And really. He is a bit on the odd side at times. But he is not now nor has he ever attempted to purposefully touch my left breast. It is just not that kind of party around this place. Just because he calls me into his office to look at pornography on his computer...er...uh...maybe that is not the best example to prove my point.

Seriously. All kidding aside. And I most certainly hope that no one in my office ever finds out about this post. I swear. It is totally not "like that" at all. Everything is above board.

So. Back to my left breast. He realized instantly what he had done. And became incredibly embarrassed. Apologetic. Concerned. He is probably in his office drafting some sort of "hold harmless" document for me to sign. Promising not to sue him for accidentally touching my left breast.

Whatever. It's just my left breast. Wait. I do not want you all to think that I let just anyone touch my left breast. You cannot just touch my left breast whenever you want to and pretend that you "accidentally" touched it. Believe me. I know the difference between accidental left breast touching and "accidental" left breast touching.

If you have touched my left breast I guarantee you that it was either a.) one hundred percent obvious that it was accidental or b.) I wanted you to touch my left breast. And probably my right breast too. But definitely the left. And I do not mean to imply that I have some sort of preference for the left breast over the right. I do not want my right breast to feel left out in any way. I do not favor the left breast. And I do not have a left breast fetish. And you never really know about the whole fetish thing because people are into all kinds of stuff. And although I am pretty much a "whatever butters your biscuit" kind of grrrl. There are a few things that I must admit go way beyond anything that I have any desire to experience. Such things that I have no desire to experience typically involve farm animals and defecation. Eww.

But this is not about either of those things or any other fetish that you may or may not have. This is simply about my left breast. So let us stay on topic. Before things get out of control.

So. Basically I got quasi felt up at the office today. And I suppose it could be worse. At least I didn't put my underpants on inside out. I hate it when that happens.

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Naked and Tied to a Traffic Light in a Wind Storm

One of you once said that you wanted to see the naked parts. Another said you did not. Even though I know that you do. But perhaps not the naked parts that I am referring to here and now. We will not talk about those naked parts. Even though I have been pondering said naked parts a great deal as of late. Not merely my own naked parts. But the naked parts of others.

And I do not mean pondering the naked parts of others to mean what you think it means. Well. Not entirely. But I will not discuss that here. And now. That is not the point of this post. And good grief I have to be able to have a secret or two don't I. Right. I will remain tight lipped about said ponderings. They are dangerous and will only serve to get me into some sort of trouble. Or perhaps not.

So. Let me tell you what I do mean. I mean I have been pondering issues of the body. Representations have always been an obsession of mine. That and both the written and spoken word. Especially when the spoken word drifts over me in slow soft melodic tones with delightful words and phrases strewn together like music. Hint hint. Nudge nudge. In other words. Keep talking.

Do you see what I mean about the whole dangerous trouble thing. Sheesh. I tried to tell you. Anyway.

Uh. Right. The body. Images and representations. Identity and identifying. My dear friend Trouble (not related to the aforementioned danger and trouble referenced above) and I have been discussing these issues as of late. She is an amazing artist with more talent than I could ever hope to have. And she I believe may very well be obsessed with such issues as well. So it has been interesting discussing such things with her especially given the different forms of representational media we are currently immersed in with respect to this specific topic.

So. I have been thinking. Oh no. Here she goes again. Thinking. No really. I have been thinking. And maybe it was the wind last night. Storms put me in a contemplative sort of mood. I am saddened at the infrequency storms in this area. However. I do live close enough to water to get some decent storm action drifting in on occasion. And I am thinking that it is just about the right time to drive out to the Pacific. For the ocean always brings the most magical of storms. Storms. Storms of the thunder and lightening variety. One of the few things I miss about the east coast. Thunder and lightening. And Colony Pizza. NYC street vendor falafel. Lightening bugs. And a blow your freakin' mind art scene. Oh. And good public transportation. But that is pretty much about it. Wait. I miss the Franchina too. Yes my dear. I miss you.

At any rate. Last night was a crazy wind storm fog rolling in time in my neck of the wood.

As my house shook. And tree branches cracked and fell to the ground. I felt at home. At home in my own skin. And I always feel at home when the wind blows hard and the fog rolls in. But this was something different. And I realized something. I realized that everything is fine.

Funny thing to realize. But it is. Everything is fine. And actually. It is much more than fine.

So. I should say. Early-ish yesterday was semi-unpleasant. I have been worried about two lovely people in my life who are not doing so well on the medical front. And of course this is difficult for me because I have no control over either situation. Sometimes it is painful not to have control. Especially over such things as these. And with one dear friend I was reminded of circumstances that were unrelated to her but related nevertheless. I did not realize it initially. And then it surfaced. I saw her illness and it was familiar. Similar to something that fell into my lap many years ago in dealing with the illness of another. And I was forced to make difficult decisions. Decisions that I was neither ready nor prepared to make. Never feeling as though I was doing the right thing. I felt awkward. And alone. And I realized the similarities and knew that at least some of the residual yuckiness I was feeling was a physical and emotional remembering.

So after all of my obligations for the day were met. I went to have cocoa with a friend.

And maybe it was the magic of the cocoa. Or perhaps it was the compassion and wisdom of the friend. And I am certain that the wind and fog played at the very least, a small part in the process. But suddenly I felt as thought everything was fine.

But I said that I had been thinking. And what this post is really about is something simple. Intimacy and vulnerability. Er. Maybe not so simple. And I know that sometimes it is rather difficult to determine what the hell I am actually writing about because of my tendency to be vague and subtle in my statements.

I want you to know what I am talking about. But I do not want you to know what I am talking about. Because that might very well put me smack dab in the middle of some vulnerability. And it might be too intimate for me to feel comfortable sitting in.

But this post is different. So rather than merely write about such things knowing that some of you will see the hidden words within and others will not. I will simply state that I am thinking and writing about intimacy. And vulnerability. As the two are inextricably woven together with string and paper clips and glue and a bit of duct tape here and there.

If there was some generalized quiz about the ability to be intimate and vulnerable my score would prove rather pathetic. I am now admitting this publicly. Which of course means that I have completely lost my mind. But no one reads this shit anyway right. Er. Uh. Well. I guess some of you do. And I am doing this because I now know that I am not alone. Although sometimes it doesn't exactly feel that way. But I am trying to remind myself that I am not that special. And we all feel these things in various ways and to various degrees. And perhaps in saying these things out loud. We will all speak of who we truly are and others will hear. And we will all find a way to negotiate beyond these spaces into something more.

And let me also admit that I have many tricks to avoiding intimacy and vulnerability. Some are perhaps apparent. I know that there are some of you that I am not fooling as much as I would like to think I am fooling you. Other tricks are perhaps not so apparent. And some of these so-called tricks are actually lovely qualities if I do say so myself. And I suppose I can say so myself because I am writing this crap so if I want to give myself a bit of credit and a pat on the back I should. I mean I am pouring my freakin' heart and soul out here people. Sheesh.

Seriously. Let me provide an example. Some of you have found me to be a rather compassionate person. And do not scoff. You have said it. And not just when you were drunk. Or in a semi-comatose state. So let me say I am compassionate. I believe that I am. You can't convince me that I am not. Even if my patience sometimes wears thin. I do care deeply for all of you. Er. Some of you. You get the idea. But sometimes it is very very easy to tap into my compassionate side because in doing so the focus is removed from me. And I no longer have to share intimacy or display my vulnerability.

I have done this recently with at least one of you. Over a freakin' cupcake no less. And perhaps that is somewhat blasphemous.

And this is but one small example. There are certainly many more that I could provide. But you get the idea. And I suppose we all have reasons for being this way. Most certainly I am no exception. But last night I realized. At least a little tiny bit. That everything is fine. And that perhaps I could step gently into such intimacy and vulnerability without the fear of spontaneous combustion. Or maybe some of you could keep a great deal of ice around. And a fire extinguisher perhaps.

It seems quite simple doesn't it. Funny how the most simple of lessons are often the most difficult to learn and enact. Yes. It is the enacting that is truly challenging. Knowing is one thing. Enacting is entirely different. Indeed.

But we don't really talk about these things. Not really. Sometimes on the surface. And we never want to admit that we are messed up in any way. But I believe that it is necessary. Necessary not merely for ourselves. But for everyone. For in the re-telling we learn that we are not alone. And we learn that there are other human beans out there in the world that are ready to accept us for who we are and help us through the rough patches. Guide us through the dark scary places. And stand ready with a fire extinguisher.