No Such Thing

I have this theory that everyone has a “real” age that they always stay at, no matter the date on the calendar. For me, I have never stopped feeling 17. I’m still this pessimistic, reckless daydreamer who makes her bed every morning (except when I sleep until the afternoon). I’m still struggling with religion and belonging and never being tan. And this is why I think there is no such thing as growing up — and if you’ve met a real adult, please let me know, because I want to prove you wrong. (Oh, yeah, and I’m still super competitive.)

I was just talking to Minerva this week, catching up with her after the birth of her son (!!!) . I’ve known her half my life (!!!) and it was amazing that this thing I’ve been hearing about since we were in middle school has finally happened and she has an actual human baby that is going to grow up and learn to read and make friends and be a real person is just blowing my mind. But, despite the fact that she is married with a house and a baby and has a full time job, we still gossip and joke just like when we were young. We just don’t play MASH anymore. Ah, MASH.

It’s both comforting and terrifying that there are no grown ups. On one hand, I don’t feel bad getting so high on Saturday that, despite my sister’s repeated insistence that I definitely ate birthday cake, I have no recollection of any such thing. On the other hand, WHO IS GOING TO SAVE ME FROM MYSELF.

But that’s a problem for future me.

Things I’ve Learned from Phoenix

I’ve been living in Arizona for just over a year now. Desert life is a thing that has consumed me more fully than my profession ever could, and I’m going to blame this ridiculous place for my lack of posts.

Drinking things:

  • Brunch is not a meal, it’s a lifestyle.
  • If the bars close but you still want to party, go to the casino. You still can’t get served after 2am, but you probably should stop drinking anyway.
  • Even if you only plan to have one drink, call an Uber. One drink isn’t worth the DUI and we both know you aren’t going to just have one drink.
  • Pool party = beer brought to you in the pool, famous DJs, smoking in hotel rooms, followed by impossibly fancy dinners and falling asleep with your shoes on and chlorine-curly hair.
  • How to use a charcoal grill and not get in trouble for taking shots at the pool.

Friendship Things:

  • Labor Day is friendship day.
  • Why it is important to have lots of girl friends.
  • How to get used to your friends sleeping on your couch and trying to remember in the morning where everyone left their cars.
  • How to smoke a cigar at a marble table while wearing glow sticks in your bra.
  • How to bully your introvert sister into having fun.
  • How to let your introvert sister bully you into getting some actual sleep for a change so your Fitbit sleep charts aren’t so appalling.
  • How to go to Las Vegas with six other friends and manage to leave with an unbreakable bond and no visible scarring.

Work Things:

  • How to work from home.
  • How to deal with chill West Coast people instead of uptight East Coast people without clawing your eyes out.
  • How to travel alone.
  • How to make your own fun in every city, whether that means finding a great sushi place or staying up all night drinking and singing karaoke and looking at the stars with new friends.

Love Things:

  • How to survive a long distance relationship.
  • How to survive the end of a long distance relationship.
  • How to fall in love with yourself.
  • How to start falling for someone new, a feeling you never expected to have again.

How to Get out of Jury Duty

Once upon a time this blogger had jury duty. I showed up at 8am, drank some coffee, read Christopher Moore, watched the video about civic duty, and chuckled to myself at the fifty-something man in a three piece suit snapchatting his lady that he didn’t want to be there.

In the courtroom, the potential jurors answered yes or no questions like “Do you drink” and everyone said yes. (I love Arizona.)

When it was my turn, they brought up that I had said yes when asked if anyone close to me had a DUI. “Um, yeah, like several of my co-workers?”

The prosecution’s lawyer asked if that made me hate cops. “Naww,” I said. “They deserved it.” He grinned at me and I smiled back. The defense lawyer looked ill.

“What do you mean, deserved it?” he asked carefully. “Oh, they told me what they blew,” I said lightly.

“Did that surprise you?” he asked. I laughed and said no. I was briefly worried he was going to ask me out.

The defense asked if I remembered the charges. I recited them back to her. She asked if that gave me an opinion on the matter. I responded affirmatively, as the charges were significantly over the legal limit. The judge told her it was a stupid question and she needed to ask a better one.

“Do you have any bumper stickers on your car?” she asked.

I couldn’t figure out why she asked this. Was she trying to determine if I was cool and hip? I didn’t know what the cool and hip answer was so I settled on the truth. “Um, no. Well, kind of? I have a window cling.” She looked excited and asked what it was.

Oops.

“This is kind of embarrassing,” I said with a breathy laugh. “You know those decals of like families, with the husband and wife and the kids and the dog?”

Here she nodded encouragingly.

“Well, my boyfriend got me one for Christmas that is a guy and girl and bags of money because we don’t have any kids.”

The entire fucking room lost it. Even the judge was cackling. Once he caught his breath he asked if anyone had any other questions.

They didn’t.

And I was free to go.

Enough

I’m bad at sticking to things.

I haven’t written here in months. I am bad at exercise. I am worse at dieting. My least favorite part of fake nails is having the same color on my hands for two whole weeks IT’S SUCH A COMMITMENT.

The only things I’m really good at sticking to are reading, drinking, and Liebling, and that’s because those things require no effort. They are a part of me, like breathing or tattoos or ankle bones. (But not a part of me like my boobs, because I hate those, or my hair, because I can’t decide on that either. Just so we’re clear.)

But I’d like to be the kind of person who can stick to things. To be able to say that I exercise five times a week — and mean for more than just this month, and know I will keep it up. I’d like to go out and do things and stick with them and not be so desperately unsatisfied by my skin and my hobbies.

So here is step one. Write again. Write more. Tell a story. Keep a promise to myself.

Made Up Anniversary #4

Today is Liebling’s and my made up anniversary. This suits us as we like to think of ourselves as the Morticia and Gomez of our friend group, and also because we have no real anniversary. It is difficult to quantify a thing that was always friendship and always more and sometimes less and quite often drunken.

It would be accurate to say that I have always loved him. It would be fair to say that sometimes I insist that I hate him, but mostly when he drinks the last beer or says something anarchical.

I’m trying to remind myself that it has been less than a month since I saw him last, and it’s really not that long; other people have had to survive long distance for longer with less visits than we’ve had. But it is still hard when I can’t sleep to not be able to wake him up, and somehow harder still to try and summarize the days and weeks that don’t have him in it.

It would be accurate to say I am grateful to be in love and also fair to say that it is so painful to be so far apart.

I can’t believe it’s been four years of love. Pretty damn amazing.

It would be both accurate and fair to say I love him more now than ever.

The Least Populated State in the US

I am writing this from Cody, Wyoming. All I knew about Cody before coming here was that Bill Bryson came here once and made fun of its commercialism and pointed out that Buffalo Bill wasn’t even from here, let alone Wyoming.┬áSo I was not surprised that when I landed there were huge signs everywhere advertising Buffalo Bill.

Mostly, I was just glad to be off the three-row plane that jostled me the entire way from Denver. I could have handled the tiny plane. I could have handled the turbulence. What almost pushed me right over the edge (a short fall, I know) was the irascible brat behind me. He kicked my seat over and over and over. I was seriously considering turning around and telling him that if he didn’t stop kicking my seat I was going to murder his parents in front of him.

But I’m passive aggressive so I just heaved a huge, dramatic sigh and squiggled around in my seat until the little shit’s father finally realized what he was doing and told him to stop.

So anyway, Cody. I get off the airplane. On a metal ramp. Into gale force winds. And then had to walk all the way to the door.

I got inside and blinked to fix my dry contacts and look for a rental car sign. Like a sign from the heavens it was directly in front of me. Next to the other rental car places. I stared. At the counter I asked for some basic directions and the all-American goofy guy got out a highlighter and showed me my hotel on the map. “You can’t miss it,” he said eagerly. “It’s really the only road in town.”

“Thanks,” I said, mildly horrified. “When I bring it back Saturday is it hard to find?”

He gestured down a short hallway. “This is actually the whole airport.” This time his eagerness to help was tinged with apology. I looked down the hallway and back at him. The airport was significantly smaller than the middle school I attended. “Welp, thanks,” I said, slowly backing out the door in fear.

I found my rental car and threw my things into the trunk with the help of the gale force winds. Thanks, wind. Then I proceeded to spend five minutes hitting switches until I found out how to adjust the steering wheel height from “small child who is probably allowed to drive here oh God the country is scary” to “moderately tall for a woman” height. I cleaned the windshield twice during the process. I didn’t even bother with the radio. I don’t know how pilots do it. It all seems like a big lie. No one can track that many switches. They can’t possibly all do something.

At least this time I didn’t smash the brake while looking for the clutch. I’m getting better at driving rentals.

I made it to the hotel, which was complete with a taxidermied (okay, maybe it was just a stuffed animal, but who could know a thing like that) deer with enormous antlers and a Santa hat, and Christmas tree in the lobby. (Welcome to Wyoming, I guess.) There was no elevator, so I walked all the way up to the second floor and then neither of my keys worked, so I had to go back downstairs and try it again. I have yet to stay in a Holiday Inn where I do not have trouble with the keys working. Holiday Inn Express, all fine. Holiday Inn, no fucking keys. I’m beginning to develop a complex. Get it together, Holiday Inn. I don’t need this.

Let’s just hope I can make it to Saturday without having to drive in the snow.