Here we are internet, inches away from two whole years of daily blogging. To say I’m PUMPED would actually be an understatement. I know it isn’t great form to be so vocally proud of oneself…but….I CAN’T HELP IT :).
New Years Quiz Ahoy!
1. What did you do in 2012 that you’d never done before?
Went to therapy, fired a therapist. Applied to graduate school, got into said graduate school, bought a couch, paid my own damn rent, ate lobster.
2. Did you keep your new year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
HECK YES. I DID. WHERE IS MY COOKIE?!
3. Did anyone close to you give birth?
Nope, not yet and we’re quite happy about this thank you.
4. Did anyone close to you die?
No! We’re also pretty psyched about this.
5. What countries did you visit?
None to speak of. This was a light travel year. 2013 might include a trip to Mexico at the very least…..
6. What would you like to have in 2013 that you lacked in 2012?
Professional confidence. Clear skin for the love of Matt Damon and all that is holy.
7. What dates from 2012 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
12/12/12/. Memorable in ALL of the ways.
8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?
I’ll go with getting into a semi-competitive graduate program. Followed closely by losing my stable employment unexpectedly and not letting it completely ruin my everything.
9. What was your biggest failure?
After 23 years of dental perfection, I got not only one, but two cavities. The failure I feel surrounding this is basically comical but I can’t help but be disappointed in myself. UGH THE SHAME.
10. Did you suffer illness or injury?
A multitude of sinus infections were bestowed upon me.
11. What was the best thing you bought?
Gotta say, and I know it sounds a little crazy, but these curtains:
Seeing them every day makes me smile.
12. Whose behavior merited celebration?
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: I get by with a little help from my friends
and my dad and my aunt.
13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?
The guy from my gym that I stupidly let take me out on a date and then spent the next two months dry heaving over his incessant calling and incoherent texting.
14. Where did most of your money go?
Rent. HEY LIVIN’ ON YOUR OWN LIKE AN ADULT.
15. What did you get really, really, really excited about?
Getting into grad school, moving into my own place, and finding Maverick.
16. What song will always remind you of 2012?
17. Compared to this time last year, are you:
a) happier or sadder? Happier
b) thinner or fatter? The same!
c) richer or poorer? Poorer
18. What do you wish you’d done more of?
19. What do you wish you’d done less of?
20. How did you spend Christmas?
Watching Les Mis with my two favorite females, Talia and Auntie M.
21. Did you fall in love in 2012?
Hmmmm, what do you think, internet?
22. What was your favorite TV program?
Girls. GIRLS. Gggggggirls.
23. Do you hate anyone now that you didn’t hate this time last year?
Actually, no. And it feels strange to write that, but honestly I don’t.
24. What was the best book you read?
25. What was your greatest musical discovery?
The Lumineers. Go get their new CD, best driving music ever, ever, EVAR.
26. What did you want and get?
An apartment, a Kitchen-Aid Stand mixer, a Boyfriend, and a dress form. Turns out I’m doing pretty excellent.
27. What did you want and not get?
All of my friends happy at the same time!
28. What was your favorite film of this year?
Tie between Moonrise Kingdom, and The Master. Shout out to my homie Ben who always picks the best movies.
29. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
I turned 23. I went out to dinner and celebrated with friends and it was everything I ever wanted.
30. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
Don’t gag, but meeting Maverick sooner.
31. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2012?
32. What kept you sane?
A feeling of positive, forward momentum in my life. And my frands.
33. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?
Why are we even asking this question? The year matters not, like a classic black dress he never goes out of style.
34. What political issue stirred you the most?
GO AHEAD AND TELL ME THAT THERE IS SUCH A THING AS “LEGITIMATE RAPE.” GO AHEAD AND LET ME HAVE A CHAT WITH YOU ABOUT THAT.
35. Who did you miss?
36. Who was the best new person you met?
Laura K from grad school is thebomb dotcom. She kept me chugging along this whole semester!
37. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2012.
Above all, don’t lose hope. Bowling balls are different sizes and weights. Frozen thanksgiving turkey’s come pre-salted so you shouldn’t soak them in a brine.
38. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year.
And we will be who we are
And they’ll heal our scars
Sadness will be far away
As it keeps my heart and soul in its place
And I will love with urgency but not with haste
A long, long, time ago. I was sixteen years old.
I was sixteen years old and my friends had conned me into going to junior prom.
I had mixed feelings about prom.
The year before I had only been a sophomore but I had been invited to the senior prom by my then boyfriend.
I went out and found what I thought was my dream prom dress. It was pale blue (wtf fifteen year old Sarah, when have you ever worn pale blue?!) and had a little line of pearls across the top. It was a dress I would have worn to my debutante ball, had I not been so decidedly un-debutantesque and loud and Jewish. That dress wasn’t me. But to me it said, “prom.”
And my dad deemed it appropriate and was wielding the check book.
It was hanging, un-worn in the closet, when he walked me to the basketball court where we had first kissed, in order to break up with me. I had resisted crying because I didn’t want to give him the satisfaction. Then I went home and sobbed into my pillow like..well like a fifteen year old girl.
Anyway, the next year I wasn’t so amped about the idea of prom. But Val, like any good best friend, would not let me leave her hanging.
“Why can’t you just wear the prom dress I bought you last year?” questioned my father.
“Ughhhhhhh Dadddddd, that dress has bad vibes!” I told him. I mean, obviously.
This time I went dress shopping with parental supervision.
And I stumbled across the most beautiful dress I had ever seen. To this day it goes down in history as the most beautiful thing that has ever graced my body. It was strapless, and nipped in just enough at the waist before cascading to the floor in the most subtly dramatic way possible. It was pale yellow and had a scrolling, intricate, beaded floral pattern all across it.
Once it was given the stamp of “non-slutty” approval I set about to buy it.
It was more money than any sixteen year old should ever, ever spend on a dress ever. But I was in love and there was no other option.
Never mind that I didn’t even have a date to this dance, never mind that my chest was probably too big to wear a strapless dress, never mind that it was probably a little too sophisticated for the Class of 2007.
That dress was mine.
When I took it to the seamstress to get it hemmed she gushed on and on.
“Dis is what dese young ladies need to be wearings you see! So elegant!”
So elegant. So elegant. She said it over and over and I only smiled more and more.
It fit me like a glove. I had welts for a week from the strapless bra and the sides of my arms were irritated from rubbing up against the beading all night but oh. Oh it was SO worth it. So, so, worth it to feel that beautiful.
Fast forward five years. I re-discover the dress while cleaning my things out of my mother’s house in order to get ready to sell it. I had just broken up with boyfriend and spent the last month crying so hard I threw up. I had lost a good 8 pounds.
Would a dress I wore when I was sixteen still fit?
Turns out, yes. Yes it did still fit. Just barely, but that’s all that counted. Me and the yellow beaded gown rode again. This time for my University’s Commencement ball.
And now, I realize that unless I suddenly get invited to some sort of gala, I’ll probably never wear the dress again.
I have a tender fantasy that my daughter will wear it to her own prom someday, but maybe it won’t be her taste.
Or Maybe she’ll be flat chested. HA.
I got the idea about two years ago, that this dress should really be displayed. Instead of wasting away in a dark closet. I started looking into purchasing a dress form, with grand dreams that someday people would enter my bedroom and be helpless but to gaze upon it’s beauty.
But dress forms aren’t exactly cheap, and a nice one isn’t easy to come by either. So, while the dream remained, I merely decided to put it on the back-burner indefinitely.
This year Maverick and I decided we’d celebrate Festivus
the holiday for the rest of us.
I was excited to gift shop for him. If I’m being honest, present hunting is something of a sport in my book.
If I’m being even more honest, it also never dawned on me that he’d out-gift me. Me! The gift master.
I have never been comfortable asking for the things I want when someone says, “What do you want for such and such a holiday?” I’ve just never felt like I could do that.
I have a really horrible memory of standing with an ex once, in front of a table of vintage jewelry. I was painstakingly pointing out the little pieces of costume accessories that I liked. In some sort of misguided effort to get a holiday gift I would be excited about.
“Why are you showing me the things you like?” He had asked, anxious to go do something else.
“That’s a good question.” I thought to myself.
Anyway. I’m used to taking my pleasure from the giving part of the equation only.
So that’s probably why my heart grew three whole sizes on Festivus when Maverick procured from his closet the most beautiful, glorious, dress form a girl could ever ask for.
It was exactly what I wanted and I didn’t even have to ask.
And I am simply the luckiest.
I’m writing this from my car.
My car. Parked on the street near my new job. In the pouring rain.
You see, I’m virtually incapable of leaving my arrival time anywhere to chance. So, even though last week my commute took all of 10 minutes. I insisted on leaving myself over a hour of travel time. I went and got coffee and even forced myself to linger in the stupid parking lot.
You haven’t lived until you’ve sat in your idling car, in front of a stranger’s house and watched them put their garbage out in the rain, silently berating yourself that you aren’t offering to help because you’re too busy hoping they don’t see you idling in your car like a freak in front of their house.
So, as I mentioned in yesterday’s most half-assed blog post of the year, I spent Christmas Eve with Troy and his very generous and hospitable family.
They do a little something on Christmas Eve called the Feast of the Seven Fishes.
The feast of Seven Fishes is exactly what it sounds like.
Basically an entire dinner comprised of various fish dishes and appetizers. Some of it was very much “my speed.”
Shrimp? That’s cool, throw a couple on my plate.
Calamari? Oh yeah I can get down with that.
Clams? Tiny little headless fish things that have been deep fried? A cod that was encased in salt and then soaked for some long amount of time…..SORRY BUT MAMAS GOT A LINE AND THE FISH DONE CROSSED IT.
I was seated next to Troy’s wonderfully fantastic grandmother who had painstakingly cooked the entire meal. Her sweetness is how my plate ended up looking like this:
At one point I turned to Troy and said,
“Do you want some of my fish? I can’t finish it.”
“No I’m all set” he said
then I whimpered a bit and said, “I don’t know what to do, I asked her for a small piece.”
“Just break it up and push it around the plate.” He instructed me, looking calm as a cucumber.
I did it and the trick of the eye did seem to work.
“See?” he said, “I’m a Christmas Eve Master!”
Once I had ingested all the fish I could possibly manage I was informed that it was time to cook the lobsters, and that I should go into the kitchen and watch them go into the pot.
You can see the tippy top of my traumatized forehead in the reflection of the microwave.
I was starting to get a little nervous. You see, up until last night I had never really had lobster. I’d had a microscopic bite once of someone else’s just to try it, but never had I been expected to eat an entire lobster myself. Never mind eating an entire lobster after having a metric ton of previous fish dishes.
It sat before me. I didn’t want to look in its eyes and yet I couldn’t stop myself from doing just that.
Grandmama once told me about the first time she had lobster:
“I was on a date with this fellah and when the waitress comes he says “The lady and I will have two lobstah” And I had nevah had a lobstah because we kept kosha ya know? And then a gentleman comes says to follow him and I ask my date I say “where ah we goin?” And he says, “To the pool!” and I said, “I don’t gut my swimsuit!” Then we get back tah the pool and the gentleman says “Alright little lady, pick ya pleasure” and I said “Oh no, I’d ratha not make its acquaintance.” And when they brought them to the table I said to my date “Oh I think they brought the wrong thing, these ah orange! Those otha ones in the pool were black!” Hahah because I didn’t know they changed colah ya know?! Hahahahahaha. Anyway of course I ate it and it was delicious.”
Anyway, I feel similarly about my food. I really don’t need to know what it looked like before it came to its untimely demise.
Word got out around the table that I was a first timer and suddenly all eyes were on me. People were offering directions and advice and I was feeling flustered to the max. It was like everyone watching and critiquing me losing my virginity. Just sitting there in front of this foreign thing that is supposed to be incredible and yet the mechanics of getting the incredible thing seem fantastically daunting. Confusion, embarrassment, wishing there was a little background music to drown out the furious beating of my nervous heart. After fumbling way longer than necessary I all but begged Troy to give me a hand. That bastard didn’t even have a lobster, I hadn’t known there was a lobster opt out option!!
Isn’t that the most ATTRACTIVE PICTURE OF ME AND A LOBSTER YOU’VE EVER SEEN?!
Anyway, the final verdict is this: While I’m very, very, much in favor of any food that it is socially acceptable to dip into
my ultimate love and sister wife melted butter Lobster seems like way more trouble than it’s worth.
If I were on a desert island and it was the only source of nutrition I’d probably eat it. Similarly if I were on a desert island and the only food I couldn’t have, was lobster, I wouldn’t shed a single tear.
But Happy Birthday Baby Jesus. I made it.
Its time to say goodbye.
I’ve known this moment was coming all day but somehow I’ve pushed it down down down to a place where it feels tolerable. So goodbye’s been living in my kneecaps.
Her father passes her to me and immediately I feel the pricking of the tears behind my eyes. Goodbye goodbye goodbye traveling up my legs and finding its new home, a lump in my throat.
I kiss her, and I smell her little baby head. Nothing can replicate that baby smell. She makes her baby noises, she doesn’t smile. But smiling on cue was never her style, in fact she cries a tiny bit, she should have taken a nap about 45 minutes ago. I like to think the little cry is for me, because she knows I’m leaving.
When I arrive at work every morning she turns her head to look at me.
“Hello little munchkin” I always say. And she always smiles.
Her memory of me is like a flash in the pan though, she’ll never know who I was except for whats told to her, and the few pictures we have together.
So I’ll carry this for the both of us.
Oh my heart, my poor, poor heart. Just can’t take it.
And then she’s sitting on the couch beside us, at the loudest party there ever was. Louder than any reasonable human would imagine a party of 12 people could be.
2012 is playing on FX, but we have it on mute. The screen displays disaster after disaster after disaster. Crumbling earth and crashing waves and isn’t it fun to watch movies about the apocalypse?!
I think to myself, that if I were in the movie 2012 I wouldn’t be running after John Cusack looking for gas for a 6 seater plane. Nah.
I’d find the quietest corner I could and just wait for my deliverance.
I really don’t like stress, or running. The apocalypse seems pretty heavy on the running.
We’re talking and remembering her ex boyfriend. The one who did the damage. Who continues to do the damage just having had existed.
Suddenly and without warning she says
“I’m gonna cry”
And it wasn’t a threat, just an announcement, because there they were. Tears in her shining eyes. My hand swoops around her shoulders even though I know I can’t make it better anyway.
We vow to change the subject.
“Don’t mind me while I just wipe my tears with my shirt”
Oh my heart, my poor, poor heart. Just can’t take it.
Then we’re laying in bed and its late and I should sleep, my head pounding from the loud, loud party.
But I can’t go to sleep, because I’m too powerless to fight this magnet someone must have implanted in my chest. Drawing me toward him, connecting us with a little metallic “cling.”
I can’t keep my eyes open so I let them rest, closed and off duty while my other senses pick up the slack.
Its just kissing.
But its wildly, unimaginably, more than enough anyway.
And I never knew something so simple could hold quite so much meaning, or hold it in this way.
I could kiss you forever
And my poor, poor, heart. It just can’t take it.