Happy Birthday Robert Scheppy

January 31st again--and again I'm not in Miami. Here are a list of things I've given up since August 29th, 2003.

1. Some of my free will.
2. T-shirts.
3. South Beach.
4. My ability to discern between what I want and what I want for everybody else.
5. A bunch of stuff I can't remember seeing as I'm still not the same person I was on August 28th 2003 (what a difference a day can make, no?)

A thought (not my own):

The red moon
Yesterday I saw a red moon. Drunk and tired, I stared and stared. Enthralled, complacent, yearning. From the past, I saw my moon fall.

And I let it happen.
--Thao Nguyen

And now the things I have gained:

1. My best friend.
2. A weird hilly city in California.
3. A myriad of stories.
4. A new perspective.
5. Some of my free will.


When it Rains: Troubleshooting

Like synchronized periods, I swear women all seem to have problems all at the same time.
Right after getting off the phone with Sam this morning, I returned a phonecall to Sarah who happened to be in tears. I hightailed it to Lower Haight Immediately.

To answer your question, yes, everything is okay now. Sarah is fine, but there was some time today when she wasn't quite sure if it was going to be. So, here is what I've decided--before everyone starts freaking out and crying all over the place for what may turn out to be no reason (this mostly applies to myself), we should all read this next passage, know that it is true, and re-evaluate. Then, when you're sure everything is fine, then call your girlfriends and have them tell you that exact thing that you already figured out but couldn't actually admit until she said it to you. I guess this kind of troubleshooting is innefectual and in actuality serves virtually no purpose, but maybe, just maybe, it will help at least me. This is something I told Sam yesterday and why she called me this morning.

Yes, that is what girlfriends are for--but not because we want to gloss over things, it's because we are not quite so short sighted.
When Jen or I say something like "It'll all be all right", we don't neccesarily mean that things will go as you hope, we mean that it wont matter because we will still love you more than we ever thought it possible to love someone.
Yes, you might have to go through Chemo. Yes, you might not be able to have kids, yes, You and Ian's relationship might have an endpoint--but the truth is that none of us know. What I mean when I can promise you that "everything will be okay" is that if your hair falls out, I will shave mine too. It means that I will go with you to Cambodia or China to help you adopt a child. Mostly, it means that probably none of that will have to happen. It means that we love you and yes, it will all be okay, though it may not be perfect in the way that you see perfection right now.
When Ian wont give you a prettier picture of events, it doesn't mean that he doesn't love you or want the best for you--or even actually think that everything wont be fine--most likely he's just scared. The immediate future is not very promising, no. It's all very uncertain and scary and I'm sure, just like you, he's looking for some answers. He loves you. I love you.

We fixed the wall, everything will be okay.

Addendum to New Years Resolution List:
7. I will always remember how fortunate I am that all of my best girlfriends have at least a pair of metaphorical clippers if not actual ones, and they are always ready to wield them at a moments notice.


The Wall

Ah, yes.

Remember one day in a basement when we built a wall and painted it pink? That thing kept falling over and we kept reinforcing it and wedging it between the painted-concrete floor and the exposed floorboard ceiling, nailing and stapling until it stayed.
Remember weeks afterwards when our lives began to fall apart in some ways, and we'd sit in our respective places at the Duck and toast to 'we fixed the wall'?


This is a true story. There was a wall. We built it, we broke it, we repaired it, we hung it, we watched it fall, we drew pictures of it on coasters at the bar--but finally one day, we painted it pink and said that it was good. I was at work the day the wall was torn down; but Samantha brought to me all of the carefully scavenged pink-painted canvas drop cloth that was once stretched around it, and I hung it all over my new room in our new apartment. That apartment my friends, was the Loyalty Building--two blocks from ampm, ten from the Game Room. Most importantly though, I lived across the hall from my entire world.

Most surprising to me about this story is that I had completely forgotten about it. The line 'We fixed the wall' was once thrown into the conversation at least a couple times a day to express the sentiment 'We can do it. We can do this together'; now, I'm not even quite sure where to start when all the walls have fallen and the great big open sky and tall tall buildings and miles and miles and miles serve as no comfort.

I made a gift for Sarah the other day. It's a little booklet of all of tthe pieces I wrote about 525 and Haight @ Fillmore, plus a new one. I think it is apt to tell you all now.


I say us like it means
more than she probably believes.
I can still feel the way that us once was,
still remember what we as us
have and had hoped to do.
Our plans mapped on unmade beds,
our dreams developed in rough sketches
of favorite colors and pajamas and
jewel colored martinis.
There are photos that prove what we have made,
our histories deserving of some title
yet there are still such long ways,
those single file lines
that are now how we queue.
Our means in different directions than
we mean to be.

Thanks to all of the tremendous brunettes in my life. It is all of you who help me remember how strong I can be, and how trivial some blond filmmaker is.
I love you.


The New Year is Two Parted

First, let’s recap:
“Here I have no words. I can never find any that seem quite right, seem as perfect. and caught in my throat, I let the ones I'd like to say mingle with those I never could and none of them come; I relent to listening to his halted breath, feel his hands grip me and wonder what it means and always fail to ask.”

So I did. I asked, I told, I screamed, what have you and without all of these let there be light connotations, It was good. Sort of.
And so I bring to you all:
The Amazing Actual Break-Up: Part Two

”Wait. Stop. Stop stop stop. Right Now.”

“What? What’s wrong?”

“I can’t do this. I thought I could do this, but I can’t. This doesn’t look like it should look like in my head and I can’t do this to myself.”

“Wait, what…oh my god, don’t cry. What’s going on?”

“I’m sorry. I think I’ve misled you. I should go.”

“What? You can’t leave! You can’t just leave! What time is it? Miranda….Miranda come on. Look at me. I’m not like that. I really like you, just give me…”

“Let go of me. Please, please don’t do this to me. You haven’t done anything wrong, I’m sorry, I just…”

“Can you tell me what you’re thinking? What do you want right now? Anything…anything you want.”

And now, Good on Paper: Part Two
What do I want? Hmmm.
I want Samantha to be healthy, I want her to be happy with Ian. I want Jen to find what she’s looking for. I want Counts to be everything he’s ever wanted, and Smith to find happiness with Lindsey Ann. I want Kyle and Violet to make amends for what they have done to my family. I want Sally to go to grad school and Sarah to recover and move on and not let anyone discredit what we’ve built together. I want Mindy to let go of all of her tears for all of the men that have hurt her, I want her to believe that all of those bruises are not her fault. I want Sean and Clifford to move past me without excluding me. I want my niece to stop starving herself to be thin and I don’t want her to fall down that same path I did at thirteen. I want her to know how beautiful she is, I want all of them to know how beautiful they are.
But above all of that I want it back—I want all of that fierceness I once had to believe that I could fix it, that I can help, that I can answer at least some of their questions. I want everything for them, and I want the will and the strength to make it right. I want to find it again, want to feel like nothing is impossible. I want everything that fell apart to stop paralyzing me, to stop building these never ending staircases in front of everything I can still see.

“I…I just want to lay down. Right here. Just for a little while.”

Right then I wanted to pretend. Just for a little while longer.

Sarah got back today, and all of that is over because it has to be. We will build back everything we had but better, piece by piece, until all of you and everyone will know us for what we have done. For what I have gotten back.

That being said, I also give you: Because Sometimes Apologies are Needed: Part Two

Forgive me Quinn. I am sorry.



A recap:
It's our glass houses, our floorplans, our gods, our cake. It's our real cake, our metaphorical cake, it's the vanilla and chocolate and yellow cakes that we have or have not or eat them or discard them. And what the fuck? where is all this goddamned cake and what the fuck does it look like? And why am I constantly longing after the preservative-filled-pre-packaged-twinkie-type cakes offered this world, and why am I satisfied with eating only this one crappy variety? I want Tiramiseau. I want German Chocolate. I may not even have to eat it, but one day goddamnit I'll at least recognize it. May cake help us all.

Just to tease you all a nit with a little bit of NYCD goodness, here's an excerpt from "Merry Christmas", one of the brand spankin' new NYCD essays. Enjoy.

--Basically, I think most of that crap is bullshit—the spirit and the scrooginess, all of the good will and commercialism, the religious hoo-ha, gift cards, and all of that woe-is-me-pity-party holiday suicide crap and I guess that’s why I don’t really celebrate Christmas anymore. I do admit though, that I miss the smell of pine in the living room, miss the idea that people are forced to spend time with me and smile.
Even in my non-celebratory state, I usually receive a few gifts around Christmas. These are usually the result of some secret Santa co-worker or a close friend that couldn’t resist some ridiculous gag gift that will customarily make us laugh; these gifts always remind me of a store bought cupcake adorned with one skinny pastel candle you might give an aquaintance on their birthday—something you might get and have rather received nothing at all than to admit that all these years, all of this holy stoic silent reverence comes down to one crooked candle, some amount of buttercream frosting; some haphazardly purchased gift wrapped in last weeks discarded funny papers bearing a name, maybe your name. My name.

I have been thinking lately that maybe this is wrong--maybe those cupcakes are good--maybe they're exactly what we all need. To think--that all this cake we've (I've) been so desperately seeking are dressed up as storebought sugariness, maybe we all just need to bite in to this personal sized pastry to find out what's inside. Maybe like Alice, when we hear the words "eat me" when the candle is blown out, when the little pastel droplets of wax are groomed from the frosting, we will eat it and grow to be what we previously thought impossible.

Or maybe I'll just write a poem for Mark.

We tend to create signposts from calendars,
but generally we fail to see
the sugary glee and lavender innocence,
the anthropomorphized smiles
of the whiskered ginger kittens
adorning the opposite page.

Addendum to New Years Resolution List:

6. I will buy a calendar with kittens on it.



Happy new year.

That being said, I am so infinitely sorry about the lack of posting. Let's re-cap via a list of my resolutions for the new year.

1. I will finish NYCD. I promise. It will come out about a week or so after Sarah gets back to SF depending on circumstances.

2. I will stop stressing over my exes, even if I keep waking up in thier beds or talking them down from impromptu trips to Huntington Beach (Sean). I will also stop worrying about thier feelings (Cliff)

3. I will spend much more time with Aaron and Jess. Much more.

4. I will update my blog more often.

5. I will look at the world.