Archive for the 'paranoia' Category

oh, bell hop? you seem to have forgotten this enormous trunk.

so, i may be writing a little prematurely, but then, it seems, i tend to do lots of things prematurely.  like write people off.  other things i take too long to do, like pack the emotional baggage and send it on its way.

casey and i have played out, almost to the letter, exactly what i warned against just a few posts ago.

i jumped to conclusions- understandable given my recent history with the opposite sex and wrote him off.  erased his number (to prevent drunken texting), cursed him and sullied his name amongst my friends.  i emailed him to tell him why he’s an asshole.

he called immediately to voice his surprise- where was this coming from? and protest my conclusions.  after discussion he admitted that he should have been more vocal and communicative and my reaction was understandable.  sound familiar? 

i can’t believe it went down almost exactly as my general hypothesis outlined.

lame.  i hate being predictable.

anyway.  not sure what will happen.  i think we both feel like a-holes right now.

as we should.

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bell hop! take these bags, please. posthaste.

i’m about to offer a little insight into the female mind.  granted, i am not your typical typical girl, but that’s probably what allows me to observe and report on what’s going on in here.  i could offer theories and procolomations and diatribes on the differences between the sexes and the problems they bring to cross-gender communication, but bluhhhhh.  we’ve all heard it.  what makes this different, what makes this noteworthy, is that i believe that i’m finding myself in a very unique situation.

namely, i seem to be seeing a man who doesn’t have any weird hang-ups or baggage, or games.

wait!  don’t leave!  i’m serious.  he’s totally normal.  or, if you’re a relativist, he’s off the charts not normal.

exposition:

where to begin?  ah, yes.  so, as many an urban female in my age box, i am on match.com.  i am not an avid user, but feel that need to get myself out there, at least somehow and occasionally run across a guy, or even man, that piques my interest.  about a month ago, give or take, i came across such a person and we began to exchange the inane, awkward emails that are the hallmark of the digital dating age. 

these were funnier than most and progressed to the phone level within a week or so.  i encounter a problem: the long adored northern irish accent.  i love it, but i’m out of practice.  this embarasses me on many levels, mostly because i don’t want to make anyone needlessly repeat themselves.  it’s frustrating.  to combat this, i kept phone calls brief (i’d do that anyway, internet, because i am not a phone person).  knowing the paralyzing effect his speech patterns have on most americans, the man (lets call him casey, for reasons i may reveal one day), played along. 

we made a date.  going through the nightmare that is batshit, i didn’t feel very attractive, eloquent, or even sane, so i canceled.  relatively late in the day, too.  he handled it with grace.  we rescheduled.  date number two follows the pattern of date number one.  again, he’s gracious and understanding.  we text.  he uses some abbreviations, but not an “lol” in sight.  i wonder if i’m about to fuck up some serious potential.  i suggest date number three and casey agrees to meet me at a local bar for a drink.*

i text him that i’ll be the nerd at the bar with the giant history book- the truth, but also a mini-test.  i’m a nerd, an earnest nerd as opposed to snarky, ironic nerd, which seems to be the cooler kind.  he doesn’t flinch.  he shows up on time.  he’s as cute as his picture, if a bit skinnier.  he’s polite.  i understand him in person.  time and six or so rounds fly by.  he mentions juan carlos and hugo chavez.  we both do a double take when we realize that the other is actively and interestedly participating in this conversation.  we smile.  good sign.  he asks if i live close by.  i say “don’t even think about it.”  direct quote.  he laughs, unoffended and says “no.  i ask because this has got to be my last drink and i’d like to walk you home.” me: “f.  i’m sorry.  these things just come out of my mouth. i’m a disaster at being a girl.”  casey, with the appropriate amount of fliration “you seem to be doing just fine to me.”

we finish our drinks and he walks me home.  we’re both drunk, but he’s not creepy, nor aloof.  he says he’s not good at this, but he thinks it went well and would like to see me again; what did i think?  i agreed.  he walks me to the front, gives me a kiss (yum) and waits until i’m inside to leave.  i text him thanks.  he calls me to say he had a wonderful time, was glad i was such a good kisser and that he can’t believe he just said that.  he’s sorry; he’s not good at this.

second date: meet at the movies.  see a great film.  he cuddles up to me towards the end.  we go for dinner.  good conversation.  he walks me home again.  a tamer kiss (no booze this time).  he apologizes again for not being good at this.  i tell him he’s doing great and that it’s always awkward.  he looks forward to it not being awkward, can we do a third date?

blah blah.  it’s now been four or five dates.  he works really hard and i seem to be busier than hell lately, so we don’t get to meet up too often.  he texts every day.  calls occasionally (we’re both not phone people).  he says nice things.  he doesn’t get jealous.  he listens to me.  he offers information.  he’s a gentleman, but not cold.  my mini birthday gift didn’t freak him out- he loved it and was genuinely touched.

i warned him that i’m blunt and up front and do nice things for people and it usually freaks men out.  he seems genuinely surprised and baffled at this.  i told him about beefy mcweirdo, he shook his head.  he says what he means.  he is nice.  he appears to be honest, even to his detriment.  he’s a man.  i don’t think i could whip him if i wanted to.  i can’t find ulterior motives.  i’m totally at a loss.  who is this guy?

finally, the payoff: 

my insight.  i’m TOTALLY paranoid.  completely.  think maybe he doesn’t really like me, he’s just got nothing better going on.  it’s ridiculous.  we both recognize that i’m the one with my guard up.  i can’t help it.  i’ve been fucked over so hard lately.  and i let myself be.  it’s a tough tightrope to walk- being strong, but not closed off.  i’m doing OK, but not great. 

anyway, we rescheduled our date from tonight until tomorrow because of the ice storms- it makes coordination tricky.  it’s one day, and i’m already thinking: he doesn’t really like me.  if he really liked me, he’d forget the weather.  i’ve forgotten our last two dates where he worked 12 plus hour days and still hurried to meet me on time.  forget the fact that i’m in so much pain from the weather that i feel awful and honeslty prefer to be in bed, watching 30 rock.  i’m not letting that little badger named panic totally free in my head, because i know i’m being ridiculous.  i know i could flat out explain all this to casey and he would listen, not get creeped out, shake his head and assure me “honey, we can totally go out tonight if you like.  what movie do you fancy seeing?”  and it would be even cuter because it would be in that lilting brogue. 

women are freaks! we’re nuts.  now, don’t gloat guys, you’re equally insane, in your way.  our problem is that we let our brains get ahead of us.  we have conversations, grand scenes, events, relationships, endings, fights, possibilities play out in our heads in the span of a minute.  we’re so connected to our thoughts we feel these things as if they’re real.  ever wonder why your girl is pissed at you when you didn’t do anything?  you did.  you just did it in her head.  and you were such an asshole about it.

here’s the thing.  we can easily help yourselves.  men, be more forthcoming with information.  males and females both neglect to state what’s obvious to them.  women are just six days, weeks, years ahead.  men are that far behind.  or are on auto-pilot.  don’t take for granted that your girl knows why or what you mean. just tell her.  even if it’s not pleasant, trust me when i tell you that what we’re thinking is a probably a hell of a lot worse, and definitely more convoluted.  i know you hate to use extra words, but it will save so much pain.

and ladies, take your man’s words at face value.  and trust your instincts.  your gut instincts, not that nefarious badger in the back of your mind.  if the guys a liar or an asshole, you’ll figure it out.  in the meantime, so many misunderstandings and absurdities will be avoided.  you don’t need to know everything at all times.  trust me, it’s usually not all that interesting. 

i guess i’m in a good position because i’m kind of on to myself.  i know i’m being a paranoid jerk.  and i won’t act hurt or aloof tomorrow because acts of god prevented a man from taking me out tonight.   i’ll just be happy to see him.

provided he doesn’t secretly hate me and is planning to string me along for sport…

kidding!  kidding.  right?

* incidental tip – first dates should always be a drink, you can always expand.  it’s easier to do that than to try and contract if you don’t hit it off)

i killed robert goulet

me and my big mouth.  we did it again.  and we’re sorry.

jerry garcia, jimmy stewart, princess diana, mel blanc, mother teresa.  we have now to add mr. goulet to the small, but rather exclusive list.  there may have been others, i’m not entirely sure.

i don’t mean to do it.  i don’t even realize what i’m saying until it’s too late.  when your mama told you that words can’t hurt you, she was lying. 

example:

isosceles is far away, in a happy hamlet in iberia, having cafe with her companeros de piso while watching the news.  even while fluent in castellano, isosceles has issues with the news.  they speak so damned fast.  one item she does manage to fully comprehend: the exquisite screen star and man’s man robert mitchum has died.  so sad! she turns to the companeros and says “oh no.  that’s horrible.  but you know what’s really going to be horrible?  when jimmy stewart dies.  he’s so awesome.”*

cut to the same room, the same group, with coffee and the news, but now it’s the very next day.  guess what little item of news leads off the lifestyle/arts segment?

yesterday, i sat in my new boss’s office, watching a teaser for a far-off will ferrell movie.  i casually say “is robert goulet in this movie?  because he totally needs to do a cameo for will ferrell before he dies.”**

it’s subtle, yes.  but it’s there.  always a very random target, considering the order of the day.

many people would think this hubris of the highest order, but i tell you now, internet, it is an unfortunate truth.  stick around long enough and you’ll see.  i don’t mean to do it.  honestly. 

i’ll try not to do it again.  as long as kevin bacon makes it through the next couple of days, we’re golden.

the man, the legend

*that’s not exactly what i said, because i translated.

** that IS exactly what i said.  yesterday.

who would snoop on the internet?

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well, everyone, really.  google is a gateway to information about people you know, want to know, or need to know to avoid.  i don’t think there’s a single one of us that hasn’t googled a number or a person or a place, seeking out information that would otherwise be unavailable.

it seems that word has gotten out, friends, that i have a blog, this generations version of a locked diary.  you can disguise the names to protect the innocent (or guilty), and give yourself a modicum of anonymity, but that cheap little lock can still be picked with a bobby pin, dupe key you pick up at a five and dime or sheer will.  One doesn’t have to be a genius to find someone they’re looking for using combinations of words, especially if they’re looking for a unique phrase or name.

the thing is, you can drive yourself crazy.  people put all kinds of thoughts out there these days- the near infinite number of thoughts, rants, raves, opinions, etc., are mindboggling.  it’s the nearest thing we have to being able to read minds.

but, what you have to think about is this: would you want that ability?  i mean, really want it?  would you want to know absolutely everything everyone was thinking about you all the time?  you could drive yourself crazy that way.  hell, you can drive yourself crazy imagining it, or just thinking about it. 

there isn’t anything i would put on here that i wouldn’t tell someone to their face; i have no problem with confrontation and i know that anonymous is a disappearing concept. however, not every blogger realizes that.  so, in general, i guess my advice is this: if you don’t think you’re going to find something positive, don’t look for it.  and if you find it, deal with it.  you don’t know what the context is (the mood of the author, the tone of their writing, the intent in putting it in black and white).  And despite one’s ability to find something, it doesn’t mean it’s their business.

i hope you’ll excuse me while i go off to try and find out if my new imaginary boyfriend has a criminal record.

we now interrupt this vacation story for a brief prognosis

i’ll get back to the catalan, maurizio, barca, cs lewis, etc. tomorrow.  But based on what people who read my blog seem to be interested in, i thought i’d give the public what it wants by updating an alternative plot-line: the brain damage vs panic saga.

i went back to dr. cranium for the results of my EEG, MRI and baer tests last thursday.  but not before my coworker (brekkies, the brit) totally freaked me out and chastised me for not having someone accompany me to the results session.  he told me it was very serious stuff and that i should not be alone and was there not a single girlfriend or boyfriend that could go with me for support?  i’m like support for what?  we all know the tests will tell us nothing we don’t already know.  he berated me a bit further and reminded me that i’m not a fucking superhero.  i told him i appreciated his concern, but he was actually making me feel worse.  i mean, if i were going for biopsy results or something, maybe i’d ask someone to go, but not for routine tests.  i mean, shit, do you ask your friends to hold your hand for every pap smear result?

dr. cranium was way cooler this time- nice, funny, relaxed.  maybe he was just having a bad day last time.  he told me that everything looked pretty good.  my mri showed only two small lesion-esque things, but he didn’t think they were the issue.  the eeg and the baer were normal, but i’d only gotten the brief, initial tests and they only show damages 50% of the time.  he then offered options: i can let it go, or i can go for further tests. 

the “further tests” is being locked into a room for 24 hours with electrodes stuck to my head, constantly being monitored and occasionally provoked to have “an episode-” panic attack, vertigo, whathaveyou.  sleep deprivation, absence of my klonopin, that kind of stuff.  i can watch movies and have friends over, but preferably the kind that are likely to provoke me into freaking out or disrupting my sensory flow.  who wouldn’t want that?

he stressed that it’s my choice and is less scary than the explanatory literature makes it sound.  since my current meds help me function relatively well, it’s not necessary.  however, without further info, he can’t really answer “what ifs” because the answers could be endless and impossible to guess. 

i told him i thought it would be a good idea (as long as insurance approves) and that we should set it up for a saturday so as to keep workplace busybody-ism to a minimum.  he said he thought that was the best course, but didn’t want to pressure me.  as he says, the ideal number of medications in your body is zero, so might as well shoot for that.

before signing off on this course, we agreed i should read up on it and then make my appointment.  i also threw him a curve: what if i just have panic disorder, with a side order of spatial perception issues?  i mean, i don’t want to be a hypochondriac.  he said that the prognosis of panic was entirely plausible, but not hypochondria.  he’s met tons of those and i am definitely not in that class.  that was reassuring.  i don’t want to be that asshole. 

so, might as well knock down all the possibilities until we settle on the one that fits and then treat that.  makes sense, i think.  but i’m not sure.

any advice?

but that’s not even on the main periodic table

so, as i mentioned in my last post, i had an MRI this week.  it was, as you suspect, what the kids call “good times.”

i had to schedule it early because i need to keep people at work a little less up to date on my personal life.  leaving early and coming in late may not put me in career jeopardy, but it definitely needs to be a non-issue. 

i got up early, hung over (yeah, i know, but i needed that relief) and headed down to the office.  i walk in and it’s this big, airy, light, monochramtically neutral space with lots of bonzai trees and teddy bears.  the extra touches for comfort somehow make me a little more uneasy.  i walk up to reception and hand them my prescription.  the look of consternation on the nice lady’s confirmed my fears: this was not going to be easy.

i’m one of those assholes that always has a small tingle of impending minor disaster in the back of my brain.  i could be armed with three hundred in cash and six empty credit cards and yet i always feel that i’m going to be humiliated at the supermarket by not being able to pay.  when i am having an easy conversation with someone i’ve met several times, i say their name and am suddenly convinced that i said called them the wrong name.  despite the fact that my fears are almost never realized, they have not abated.

this time, however, i face the self-fulfilling prophecy: something’s wrong.  turns out my scrip is for a +/- contrast test and i didn’t mention that on the phone when i made the appointment.  i explained again as i did when i made the appointment that i can’t make out the doc’s handwriting and gave them what i could get out of it.  the problem is that the nurse is out today and there’s no one to inject me with the gadolinium (the wha?) for the contrast part.  i have to reschedule.

ugh.  i’m leaving for vacation on weds night (yay), but i’m in cleveland monday (boo), so that leaves little time to get this done this month.  we settle on tuesday, which means i won’t know results until i get back from the canaries.  not ideal.

then, captain radiologist comes to the rescue; he’ll do the injection.  huzzah!

i head downstairs, take everything off and put it in the locker and curl up on the inoffensive beige couch in my robe and settle in to read cosmo girl and listen to the soothing beach sounds emanating from the lighty seascapes on the wall.    after i sit there long enough to become thoroughly convinced that they’ve forgotten about me, they come get me, give me the surgical hair net, put me on the table, put on headphones (they have top 40 or lite FM for my listening pleasure) and put the cage over my head.  i think that’s really the worst part, the head cage.  i’m not claustrophobic, so the super enclosed tube and the inability to move don’t bother me, but the cage is for sure disconcerting.

the test went, well, the test went.  i didn’t have a reaction to the gadolinium injection (huge relief, the disclaimers sounded awful).  for those of you who were wondering, it’s a rare earth metal on that part of the periodic table that has to be shown off to the side like alaska or hawaii on a map of the US.  atomic weight of 157.24 and is solid at room temperature.  apparently, it binds to some damaged areas of the brain.  i looked it up.

then, i was off to work.  i had too much to do to accompany the kids to the 7-11 they’ve made into a quickie mart.  all the adults were at my boss’s son’s briss, save me.  i had a lot to do and i just couldn’t kick my rotten mood.  it was an exhausting day, physically and emotionally, but the worst was not being able to shake off the mood.  i have too much to do for that kind of self indulgence.

anyway, my doc gets the results monday afternoon.  i have more tests at his office on tuesday morning, so maybe i’ll find out then, or maybe i have to wait until i get back.  it’s not like it’s a big deal, really, because my doc gave me the heads up on the situation, which can be summed up in the words of the inimitable david brent: “i have bad news and irrelevant news….”

but i did get a blue squishie.  and it was delicious.  simpsons fan or no, i recommend you hop on down to the quickie mart and treat yourself.

YES, I am totally one of those nerds (LOST theories)

I’m having yet another one of those HOLY SHIT moments about LOST, this one specifically relating to last night’s season finale.  So, if you’re not caught up, be warned, spoilers and ridiculous theories abound.

 1.  I think Jacob is in the coffin at the Haffs/ Drawlor* Funeral Home.  Jack would care because his life sucks after leaving the island, but Kate does not because her life has obviously improved. 

2.  Thanks to the bigger nerds out there, we know that the obit that so messes Jack up is for J…. antham of New York (for sure ruling out Sawyer) and the date of the obit is April 5, 2007.  How do we know this?  Because of the blessed geeks with HDTV out there who recognized the headline in the paper as belonging to an actual LA Times article:

april 5th story

obit closeup

Scratch that, I’m back to thinking it’s Locke- maybe as an amputee (that’s why the coffin seems small).  There’s no confirmation that Locke doesn’t have a last name that he doesn’t use.  After all, the real “Sawyer” wasn’t much of a father, and admitted he went by many names, so Locke might be the name of one of his foster parents.  But if it IS Locke, why didn’t Helen (Katy Segal) at least come?  You know what, it’s definitely Locke. 

Back to Jacob, we know that the creators have a serious thing for English philosophers, especially proponents of utlitarianism (which I totally studied my sophmore year in college and promptly forgot).  The icon of which is Jeremy Bentham.  Why can’t Jacob’s last name be Bentham?  He doesn’t have to be the Jacob on the Hanso board of directors- if he was, why would he allow Ben to kill all of his staff? 

Bentham’s biggest influences were John Locke, David (Desmond?) Hume, Jean-Jacques (Danielle?) Rousseau- see a pattern here?  All the people with whom the Island has an extra special connection.  Also, John (Kate) Austin-  a philosopher with ideas about moral and written law.

But the Bentham kicker is this thing called the Panopticon.  You gotta look this thing up.  I’m sure the similarities to the island and it’s different stations are no coincidence.

panopticon for dummies

or for those of you with even more free time than me:

panopticon for philosophy majors and/or masochists

Oh!  Also, since Patchy (Mikhail) seems to be immortal (surviving harpooning, brain aneurysm, etc.), as does Richard (mr. eyeliner), maybe they were born there OR came to the island aboard The Black Rock?  Richard was wearing pirate-y like clothes in Ben’s flashback to his youth and Mikhail’s got that eye patch.  Visual clues?  Normally, I don’t love all things pirate (in fact I now hate them, thank you Disney), but there IS a galleon on the island.

I know tomorrow I’ll have changed my mind again and found tons of new evidence to back up my new cockamamie theory, but I’m sticking with this for now.

Good thing we only have till February 09 to expound these theories.  As long as ABC and co. keep us going with the fake ads and websites and guerilla marketing…

we’ll all have forgotten about it until the DVD comes out.

* an anagram of Flash Forward

other goodies:

ben’s diary

jacob


truth

“I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”

truth

Upon common theatres, indeed, the applause of the audience is of more importance to the actors than their own approbation. But upon the stage of life, while conscience claps, let the world hiss! On the contrary if conscience disapproves, the loudest applauses of the world are of little value - john adams
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from the man who taught me everything:

“Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind.”

bygones