Random

Season Sting

Today I ache for summer, for an open road with only one lane on each side, that weaves and winds and turns and stretches and couldn’t hold onto me if it tried. For time outside of coffee shops, for time with the stack of books beside my bed labeled “To Read When…” For a scratched CD scribbled “Summer 2010″ playing Sublime or Marvin Gaye or anything that sings to me from summers past through the warm wind that tangles my curls and reminds me that the glorious sun can heal everything, but stings a little. And I’ll take the sunburn and the Texas heat if it means I get to race to the lake after work on Friday and bury my toes under murky sandmud and stay up late playing music and eating snow cones because that’s what it means to me to be young and terrified of everything, especially growing up.

And I’m still young and terrified of everything, most certainly growing up, but everything else has changed.

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Reflection

More Than Bitter, More Than Sweet

I miss this place even though I am still here, even though the boxes aren’t completely packed and I still have a pile of clothes in the dryer. I miss it more and more as the reality of leaving becomes tangible, as my little sanctuary looks less and less like my own. I pulled the artwork and photography off the walls of my apartment and carefully wrapped the frames with paper and the purple bubble wrap that Makes Packing Fun so they would make it safely to a new, albeit temporary, home with new walls to tell stories to. Stacked one on top of the other, they fit snuggly in two medium-sized moving boxes, and I was amazed at how small that seemed, and how empty my walls look without them.

I couldn’t bring myself to unscrew the wooden block with the sturdy rubber arms that holds my ukulele on the wall. I imagine that will be one of the last items to be packed. I have dreams that my last few weeks in my hometown will be spent under trees late at night with the breeze that is still warm from the day, with old friends home for summer, playing ukulele covers of old favorites which are not-so-old when you’re twenty one and have only really cared about music for less than half of your lifespan, but manage to feel comfortable and nostalgic anyway. And if I had it my way, there would be minimal tears and minimal sadness because it seems like such a waste, but I’m not foolish enough to truly hope for such luck.

I constantly try to sort how I’m feeling about moving away. I spent many days saying I would begin packing, but found myself sitting on the floor of my bedroom instead, crying over old drafts of stories from my first creative nonfiction workshop two years ago or feeling too overwhelmed by everything to do anything at all.

Everyone I love and care for is excited for me and they tell me how proud they are and I smile and thank them and tell them I’m excited too, but that leaving will be tough and they remind me I’ll have a great time and I usually say I know but I’m not very convincing. I feel like a talking cardboard cutout with a few recorded sound responses could replace me most days, because I have the same conversations about grad school and moving to New York three times a day.

I am excited.

I’m also terrified, nervous, sad, uncertain, and numb about the whole thing. And in these stock conversations I hear the same word over and over again: bittersweet.

Bittersweet just might be my least favorite word, because anyone who has ever felt conflicting emotions, who has simultaneously waved goodbye and hello, anyone who has left home to find home, knows that bitter and sweet don’t even come close. Bitter and sweet and sad and excited and nervous and all of the words I have can’t touch what it’s like to move away from people you love in a place you love with bedrooms you’ve cried in and trees you’ve played music under and streets you kissed boys on and beds you were tucked into and a group of barefooted ladies that you danced with to polka music and a sweet dog that felt like your own, and a town that for the only life you can remember called you one of its own to live in a new town with all the promise and possibility that comes with discovery.

And through all the fear and uncertainty, the only thing I know is that I’m incredibly lucky to be so sad to leave such a wonderful place.

Gratitudecomment

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Rainy

Not sleeping, but writing.

My room is transformed. Outside my window a strobe light flashes slightly out of sync with a booming bass. Sound surrounds me with quick rhythms, a tap-dance party at two a.m. with thousands of little feet tapping on my roof (shu-ffle, shu-ffle, shu-ffle, ball, change). No sleep for tired eyes, so I dance along in dreams of dreaming dreams I won’t recall when the alarm clock wakes me a little too early for these tired eyes to want to see the morning sun after a night of summer storms. I remember how terrifying nights like these were when I was a kiddo. I’d work myself into a frenzy counting the seconds between the lightning and the sound of thunder that trailed behind as the space between the two became smaller and smaller until I was sure the next one was going to fly through the roof, through the attic, through the ceiling, to my little fingertips holding my covers over my eyelids. One-Mississippi, two-Mississippi, three-Mississippi. I remember the first time I decided not to be afraid of lightning. I was twelve at a birthday party in May. There was a trampoline and summer thunderstorm and a little girl who felt perfectly safe in the world, in her world. I don’t remember when everything changed.

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Ridiculous

Bumbadumbadumbadumbadumbum

So, the inspiration for this particular video was a combination of the sassy Kate Nash herself, a little bit of Lady Gaga, Kurt from Glee, Andy Warhol, and a twenty year-old Jennifer who likes to dress up, wear bows on the top of her head, and play ukulele into the wee hours of the night. Fun times.
So enjoy. Or don’t. Whatever. I don’t need you (zig-zag snap). Happy summer, bros!  

 

 

 

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