CAMPS

IN WHICH I PROVE TO YOU HOW VERY INTERESTING I AM

librar-y:

Washington Tidal Basin Beauty Contest — August 5, 1922.

librar-y:

Washington Tidal Basin Beauty Contest — August 5, 1922.

I’m in Madrid

And I like it a lot.

The big thing I need to write is of course about my identity, and how it feels to be Penelope Cruz on the inside and “posh Glaswegian” on the outside. 

Threads would include my father outing himself as Spanish in his heart and not, gasp, Sicilian; being told by a bunch of Brazilian men I look like Kate Middleton; getting caught up in some #banbossy moments at work; cultural stereotypes; ethno-tourism; almost being born in Bogota (but not quite); Shakira; studying French, not Spanish, in school; “that which you displace only comes back to haunt you” as said by my Austrian undergraduate thesis advisor; the “Mexichicks” from high school and college and that short story I wrote when I was 19 where I described their attire, in a way that still fascinates me; selecting the shade with which to dye one’s hair; sunscreen; the embarrassment of spelling my anglo name aloud to the nice guy at Starbucks on Gran Via; “Eat Pray Love” as a concept; and pretty much all of this.

But now? Now I do the PowerPoint.

I’ve been mentally assembling a list of songs nostalgic for places. Specifically, Southern places. This was the song that started the ache.

(Source: Spotify)

There is a man

There is a man you see out of your left eye’s peripheral vision as you exit the Q train at 14th Street from adjacent doors. The height, the hair. You clock them. The tote bag. UghNot another tote bag.

The man works on your building. On your floor, to be precise. You know his name. You met in the elevator. You relate to his Brooklynness.

Ugh. You relate to his Brooklynness.

There is a man, except he is a boy. He is serious. He is a Pisces? He must be another goddamn Pisces.

You find him. Another man with a truly un-googleable name. You find a bio. A college. A “several bands,” “enjoys playing in.”

You find a band. The band’s name is a reference to technology gone awry.

Because, of course.

But before you google this man, who isn’t that much younger, not really, you are standing on the platform between the recently departed Q train and the not-yet-arrived N train. You know he’s there, you know he knows who you are, and sees you, and you stand there and play dumb and just drink it all in.

You know he sees you because there has been a lot of seeing, and noticing, and looking, but not off campus.

You put on Wild Tchopitoulas. You apply Rosebud Salve, Mint, to your lips, with your right ring finger. You think, ugh, tote bag. And the N train arrives, and the doors open between you, and you wonder when eye contact will be exchanged.

Not another Pisces.
Not another tote bag.

Still. You play along. You’re just So Wrapped Up in Listening To Your Music. The station arrives. You exit. You, the two of you, walk up the staircase feet away from one another.

He makes a run for it on Broadway in front of a taxi. You do too.

Then you cross the street. Where’s he going? You’re (actively) not paying attention. You hop up onto the curb. You don’t sense the shadow again until you turn to smile at a passing Shiba Inu on the office block. He’s there. 

You reach the building first. You chat with the doorman. Someone enters. Another person enters. Another person enters. You’re chatting with the doorman. The elevator line is long. But there he is. Here comes the stubble. The tote bag. The hair. 

You are standing in the elevator, side-by-side. There is still no eye contact. There is a chat with someone else. The electrons stand on end. And yet. The air slowly leaks from the balloon. The person you know better, with whom you are talking, demands your attention. There is no, “Did I see you on the Q train?” There is no, “Romance is likewise strange but potentially emancipating if you care not for convention.” There is sadtrombone.wav, putting your bag down, reloading, walking to the kitchen, Maybe The Kitchen!, except, no, no kitchen.

The man does not enter the kitchen.

Each of us cries a single-lady tear as we remember our collective misfortune, but then we either sacrifice a good Christian woman or get some fro-yo to cheer ourselves up. Getting to Know the ‘Beyonce Voter’ - The Daily Beast
Or maybe just because we mostly emerge from families, we carry the family inside us, vestigially, as the fascination of the couple. The Loves of Others – The New Inquiry
I stay away from the Kentucky Punch because I do not believe that bourbon should be mixed with Sprite Eloise: An Update : The New Yorker
'hacking' is seen as a masculine endeavor, and the proponents of it tend to be these men who would never dream of being something as banal as organized Life Hacks: Improving Your Own Shit - Adult Mag
humansofnewyork:

"It was like a romantic movie. Better than a romantic movie. But then he left and went back to Greece. I offered to come along, and learn the language, but he said ‘no.’ A few months later, a woman told me a story about how she had a dream about an old boyfriend, and she called him up, and they got back together and eventually married. I thought: ‘Maybe that will work for me too.’ So I called him in Greece. And he told me that he was expecting a child with another woman."

humansofnewyork:

"It was like a romantic movie. Better than a romantic movie. But then he left and went back to Greece. I offered to come along, and learn the language, but he said ‘no.’ A few months later, a woman told me a story about how she had a dream about an old boyfriend, and she called him up, and they got back together and eventually married. I thought: ‘Maybe that will work for me too.’ So I called him in Greece. And he told me that he was expecting a child with another woman."

(Source: yaherd, via chadwys)

There’s a certain assumption that when a man tells the truth, it’s the truth. But when I go before the jury to tell the truth, I have to negotiate how I’m going to be perceived. There’s a suspicion around a woman’s truth. My story, it’s so big, it sounded like too big a can of worms, and I was like, who would believe me? But then I realized: other women would believe me. Kathleen Hanna, The Punk Singer (via christinefriar)

ASTROLOGICALLY SPEAKING

Watch out for power-trippers and dipsomaniacs in work/biz realms. They’re deluded and angry.”

"This is a “gloves off” moment. Situations demand that you express your power and personal Awesome. Nothing is served by you playing small or dimming your aura so as not to freak others or even yourself out. Don’t let old demons keep you dull or broke.”