These last few days, I’ve felt so liberated. Not liberated in the ecstatic, transcendent, and joyous state of existence we normally associate with that word, but more “liberated” in the sense of being free of any sense of belonging and identity. Well, not quite, but I’m in the habit of brewing a mug of melodrama each morning I wake up along the cold, wet streets of Portland. It’s an existence that others would consider depressing, drab, and dangerous, but in many ways its not all that bad. I get to eat out a lot, spend time at the library, do a lot of walking around the city, live at a more leisurely pace, etc. It’s a bit exciting at times. More on this later.
How did I end up here, you ponder to your little self as you impatiently skim through this introduction for the “good part” in your pajama bottoms? I’ll tell ya’ eventually. In the mean time, my “List of Follies 2” is an excellent spark notes version for you internet-junkies. Consider it an instruction manual on how NOT to behave if you want to have slightly important things in life like a job, somewhere to live, and someone to love you.
What do you think: Did I fuck up more than I did during the first part of my journey? Have you made any of the same mistakes? Would you like to share or give your own two cents on the good life?
THE LIST OF FOLLIES:
- Day 46: Touching the Oakland Inner Harbor without proper sanitary footwear
- Day 48: Taking a beautiful, radical, poly chicana (who would later never respond to my friendly texts) out to an expensive organic vegan lunch.
- Day 49: Buzzing around Berkley to find chili garlic sauce for the dinner I was supposed to make for my host in West Oakland two hours ago.
- Day 50: Getting lost in the neighborhoods of Twin Peaks and subsequently killing my feet, freezing my ass off, and practicing my urine retention skillz.
- Day 50: Not signing on as a “Sex Model” at Kink.com.
- Day 51: While in a time crunch, taking two extra hours pondering life and justice at Alcatraz, an hour detour to Berkley for vegan ice cream, and taking the wrong exit/bridge back into San Fransisco during peak rush hour.
- Day 46-51: Driving up the curvacious CA-1 in sea mist at dusk (and well into the night) because of having miscalculated the free days I had in the Bay Area before spending two full days with an online friend.
- Day 54: Passing up all the ancient forests of Redwood National Park because I became overly indulgent in the morning.
- Day 55: Freezing-up in horror as a van engulfed in 10-foot high flames rolled in reverse towards Catbird and I.
The Era of Asshole-ness
- Day 4/59: Freezing-up out of intimidation when my amazing date tossed my insinuated-kiss challenge back at me.
- Day 5/60: Making up for the past night fuck-up by going with my heart (vs. ego or brain) to make a (successful) move on someone I would be living and working with for the next three months and hardly knew (even though I promised myself “never again” to living with a lover twice before)
- Day 4-6/59-61: Polling friends on facebook for advice on and interpretation of my romantic life, (polling that reads a lot like obnoxious and inappropriate bragging and bro-ness)
- Day 8/63: Sleeping over at another person’s house less than 24-hours after sleeping with someone else for the first time.
- Day 9/64: Thinking being open and honest would be a good idea.
- Day 13/68: Inviting someone with whom I share mutual affection (a someone who is very insecure and also someone I cannot get a good nights rest with) into my bed to cuddle before going to sleep to wake up hours later.
- Day 21/76: “Correcting” a sensitive someone by suggesting that she should use gendered pronouns for nonhuman animals.
- Day 21/76: Asking someone who liked me when she was planning on leaving my bed with her dog, (a dog whom had just snapped at my face in her bed).
- Day 27/82: Absentmindedly shutting a dog into his crate while another was already inside.
- Day 31-32/86-87: Immaturely withdrawing because of someone’s lack of faith in my knowledge about tick removal, escalating a mutually infuriating conflict to the point of no return (or so we thought)
- Day 38/93: My grandmother slipping on a sidewalk, hits her head, and does not return (not my folly, but a very sad, unexpected death)
- Day 46/101: Returning to a hospital with a reputation for having dickhead doctors for a medical checkup.
- Day 2011: Taking on an extremely ambitious project, procrastinating a year, and moving somewhere 20-60 minutes from an available library whose resources I can’t access because I am not enrolled there.
- Day50ish: “Accepting [a film review] with major revisions” for an academic journal from an author who is not fluent in English.
- Day56/111: Snapping at that someone for “stealing my fan” from the communal/study space for her cabin.
- Day 73/128: The first time ever telling a woman she is “being a bitch” for unproductively (hostilely and sarcastically) referencing everything I’ve ever done wrong while I was chatting with a friend.
- Day 86/141: Selecting a Thai restaurant as the venue for a date, only to read that “No meals can be made Vegan” on the menu immediately after my date arrives.
- Day 91/146: Poorly anticipating how much cleaning up I had to perform before leaving the sanctuary.
- Day 56/147: Forgetting to print out a map of Crater Lake National Park (where there is no cell reception) before I arrived at night (when the visitor center is closed) with no available campsites, and no cash for the Wizard Island cruise
- Day 57/148: Forgetting to submit my payment for my Lost Creek campsite and possibly having my tent confiscated.
- Day 58/149: Relying on a flaky stranger (who told me before he went to bed that he’d kill me if I touched his daughter) to host me for a night in Eugene, OR.
- Day 59/150: Taking home a drunk young woman covered in chocolate vegan pudding into my new car.
- Day 60-68/151-59: Prioritizing sex over Portland job searches.
- Day 65/156: (Too stupid to even mention) on Alberta!!!
- Day 69/160: Dehydrated and ill-fully bumbling around southern Washington.
- Day 72-73/163-64: Inefficiently purchasing food and materials for my solo wilderness Olympic NP trip.
- Day 77/168: Impatiently speeding to the Hoh rainforest and barely missing a bobcat.
- Day 77/168: Temporarily moving in with my present lover until I find a job (even though I promised myself “never again” to living with a lover three times before [see day 60])… Oh, the heartbreak.
To be continued…..