Saturday, January 3, 2009

Not Hoping For A Rerun

At 8am this morning I woke up to the buzzing of my blackberry and answered another one of "those" phone calls. It wasn't the first time over the last year that I have received one of "those" calls. Somehow, I thought this year was going to be different. I thought the worst was behind us and that the universe owed us a break. But I was mistaken. Just three days into the new year and already, the cloud of impending doom hangs over my head and follows me as I shuffle throughout my day. Despite "the news" I managed to pull myself together and make it to the loft on 8th and Broadway. For five hours I drank strong coffee and ate snacks that come individually wrapped in Christmas boxes from relatives and clients. I turned off my blackberry and turned off my life and stayed present as we shared our fears as well as our hopes and dreams for the upcoming year. Tomorrow I'll find out if this year is starting off differently or if I am faced with a carbon copy of what I was feeling this time last year. I just need to remember, that although I may not have control over situations, I do have control over my reactions. So whatever happens, at least one thing can be different this time around.

Disco Jesus (Part 1)

There's been a light flickering over the crucifix at church for the past few weeks. I think it's a short and for some reason it hasn't been fixed. I like it. The lights flicker erratically: short, long, on, off, flicker, flash. I like to ask questions and think that the flashing lights are answering me. Of course, whatever I ask, I can pretty much take any flashing as a sign of whatever it is I want the answer to be.
And the answer today was it's time to start a new blog.
I started thinking about it a little while ago when someone made the comment that all the blue was drowning out the pink. It wasn't the first comment that made me feel guilty for taking up so much space on what is a joint effort. I realize I've usurped this whole blog and the "s" in thrivingoleanders is somewhat missing.
I think sometimes people are looking for pink and are assaulted with blue. Or pink is there, but there's so much blue all around it, it gets prematurely pushed down. Or some people just don't get that A is pink and K is blue and end up thinking A is writing things that she's not actually writing and then she has to answer questions that have nothing to do with her. Or A gets associated and has to deal with comments that are mostly geared towards K.
In any case, today is the day. A year has passed since the first post on thrivingoleanders and it's time for a spin-off. I'll try to gear my thrivingoleander blogs more towards stuff that it was meant for, especially since K and A are starting new adventures in new places. And the new blog will probably be mostly the same stuff that this blog has been for me: venting, dreaming, naval gazing, waxing on, confessing, and the like.

Friday, January 2, 2009


I think I have come to a conclusion about something I've been thinking about it for around a week and the time for me to actually do it is at hand. I don't know when you know something is right or when it's wrong, but sometimes you just have to do it and see what happens.
It's like tennis, you commit to the shot and either it's in or it's out. But you eventually have to hit the ball and deal with the results.

Thursday, January 1, 2009


It started innocently enough. I wanted to see "Twilight." I made B come see it with me. Then I bought the book and started reading. It was all downhill from there. B was gone for Christmas, so all I did was read and read and read. I finished all four books in record time (for me). I hate the books but I love them. They're so trashy but they have seeped into my brain. I thought once I had finished reading them, the hunger would be over, but I can't stop thinking about them or talking about them.
I think poor B might be nearing the breaking point. I made him take me to see "Let the Right One In" tonight and he wasn't impressed. He called it "A Norwegian 'Twilight' for 12 year olds." I keep having to say the word "Renesmee" out loud or in my head at least a couple times a day. It's like I'm bewitched or something. I just hope it ends soon. I need to find something else to fixate on before I drive everyone around me crazy.

Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Moving on Out

The last day of the year. The last day before I switch jobs. It's weird that it all timed out this way. I think I'm just kind of out of it in regards to the whole switch. I've known it was coming for such a long time and now it's here and it's just happening. I think it's just my defense mechanism, I just let it happen like it's out of my hands. But it's my life and it's people I spend a lot of time with and it's changing for the first time in a while. The last time things changed so radically, I ended up kicking and screaming for weeks, months, maybe a year. I hope I'm moving away from the dark and into the light. And I guess it's better that I'm actually taking the chance instead of standing still.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Flashing Lights

I was driving to work. I hurried to make a light towards the freeway--not because I was in a rush, but just because I didn't want to have to stop. I heard the siren and immediately went to the dark place. What did I do? I was rushing? Was I speeding? Was I unsafe? My tags are up to date. Was a light out? I just reattached my rear view mirror with glue, so that's not missing. What happened? I hate trying to figure out what I've done wrong. I hate that feeling of having done something wrong and not knowing what it is.
I turned on to the freeway on ramp and saw the lights flashing behind me. Ugh. It's the holidays, it's 8 in the morning. Is this really necessary?
The police officer was just entering the highway, he passed me and went on his way. I hate driving.

Monday, December 29, 2008

French Dreams

I had a dream I was at the French Open. But it wasn't like the real French Open, it was like an indoor bull ring where everything was lit by a soft, red light. Rafael Nadal had made the final and his opponent was... some 8 year old kid. I remember thinking "How did this kid get through six rounds?" But I explained it to myself by thinking he must be a clay court specialist. I thought, maybe he just has speed and gets everything back all the time, waiting for whoever he is playing to make a mistake. The crowd was wild and the kid was no match for Rafa. Towards the middle of the third set, he just sat down. Rafa came over to check on him, but he was too tired to continue. At first, the kid's brother came on the court, wanting to play until the kid's dad came over and picked up his son, telling Rafa that it was over.
The most stunning thing about the dream was the soft, red light. It was so amazing how everything in the bull ring took on that tinge of red.

Sunday, December 28, 2008


I can't make it. I feel like screaming. I feel like throwing a tantrum. Don't make me go back! Don't make me go back! There's too much to do, too much to see. I don't want to go back to that little box. The hours are slipping away. When the days seemed plentiful, things were fine, I didn't seem to mind, but now that my time is numbered I feel things slipping through my fingers. It's out of my control. My days are numbered. I can see myself pacing like a cat behind bars, tense and unpredictable. My brain searches for a way out, but there isn't any. I look out my window at the darkness and in my mind I actually think "I've experienced my last sunset." I don't know why things seem so final, like there's no other time but now. R & H know something's up and they're trying to comfort me. They are telling me it will be fine. I want to believe them.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Just a little bit longer

I'm so thankful that time has gone by so slowly. Usually with breaks in work, I blink and they're over, but this one has seemed to have lasted. The days seem longer. Maybe it's because all I'm doing is reading and a few activities here and there. I don't know, but I know I needed this. I needed a few days to clear out the brush so it doesn't catch fire when the winds start blowing again. Now that Monday is nearing, it's a little stressful thinking about going back to that. But I think I can survive. I think I can make it.

Friday, December 26, 2008


After playing tennis with DW, I was dressed and ready and knew if I took a nap or waited too long, I wouldn't be able to leave the apartment for the rest of the day. I knew I had to push through and do what was needed. It was "Twilight" that made me do it. I had to venture out. I was reading the second book way too quickly and realizing that I had to have the third ready in case I finished sooner rather than later. I ventured out... to Target. Big mistake.
The Burbank Empire Center was a nightmare. Cars everywhere, piling up in long lines along all the roads and the stores were full of people going in and out, lines that stretched across the store. Part of me wondered if I went in, would I be able to get out. To think, before I left, I was thinking it was a Friday afternoon and Christmas was officially over, how bad could it be. The answer was horrible. And the reason I was there, the last two books in the series, were all gone, except for copies of the ones I already had and one copy of "Eclipse." I thought I would show them, I wouldn't wait in line for just one of the books and would just go to another Target and get both.
Well, I went to another Target and it was worse. It was weird because at the moment I was there, it seemed like 90% of the billions of people in the store were waiting in line. I went to check the books, they had two copies of the fourth book and none of the third. I wasn't going to make the same mistake. I took one of the copies, which looked like it was in better shape than the other--which meant it looked like it fed on by vampires maybe three times instead of four--and waited in a shorter line in the back of the store.
It wasn't so bad. I had my iPod and try to focus on how funny it was that seemingly everyone was out of their house and shopping at the exact same time and what a mess everything was. I saw a lady muscling through the line and making loud comments about "Rude people on Christmas." I made it through and got in my car and drove for closer to home.
The drive was scary. Everyone was in a hurry and making crazy choices on the road. I tried not to get caught up in it. I listened to my radio and took deep breaths. I finally made it to Borders or Barnes and Nobel. I never know what Bookstar in Studio City really is and although they were out of the softcover of "Eclipse," they had plenty of the hardcover. Fine. I took it, I bought it. I picked up some milk at Vons and went to lock myself indoors. I would prefer to stay indoors reading the rest of the weekend, but I don't think I can get away with it.
I just hope next time I venture outside, it isn't anywhere near the madness of what it was today.

You Can't Say That I Am Not Your "Friend"

Which is it? Do you want to know everything or do you want to stay out of it? You can't have both. You need to pick a side and stay there. There was a time, not long ago, when you said how much you hated it when people who called themselves "friends" would omit information or not tell you the whole story. So I have tried my best, to fill you in on everything that I have found out...or overheard...or been told (even in confidence). I have tried to be what you describe as a "friend". But, you have pulled away. Maybe it is for your own protection, because it is all too much for you to take in. Maybe you are just afraid of getting hurt...again. I thought we were in this together? There was a time when I was fighting for myself, clawing my way to the top, and you were upset that I wasn't sharing the whole story. So I looked inside and I decided what was more important...and I chose you. I chose you. But things have changed between us. So from now on, you can't be mad at me if I hear some information and I choose not to tell you. You can't be mad if I fight for something and choose to leave you behind. You can't say that I am not your "friend." I have tried. You are the one shutting me out and choosing not to tell me the whole story. You are the one omitting information. If you were my "friend" you would talk to me about your feelings and tell me if there was something you needed from me...I am not a mind reader. "Friends" share their truth, even if it is not easy.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

False Alarm

Thank goodness everything is okay. I'm watching firetrucks parked in the middle of the street right outside my apartment. I was sitting on the couch, engrossed in "New Moon" and Bella and Edward's doomed love affair when I heard the ringing. It sounded far away, so I really didn't pay much attention to it. Suddenly, the firetrucks were here, lights flashing, horns blaring, and firemen walking to the building next to mine.
I got a weird panic feeling, like, "What do I do?" "Where are the cat carriers?" "Where do we go?" "What should I bring?" "How much time do I have?" "Are all the hotels full?" "Shouldn't I be wearing more than just my underwear?"
They're leaving now and I'm glad I don't have to deal with any horrible reality that might have happened.
Mabye, on this Baby Jesus Birthday, I'm being reminded that it's not the things that matter, it's the cats. It's all about the cats.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Some Secrets Should Never Be Spoken

I usually want to know everything about everyone. I've always had a natural curiosity about people's stories and where they come from and what they've done. But lately I've been realizing that there are things I don't want to know. It's one thing when I'm prying for information but it's another when the information is just handed over on a platter with no warning. There are some things that should be left unspoken. There are some things that damage my brain and stay dormant inside only to flare up at the most unexpected moments.
I was at church tonight. It was a Christmas service and my brain was partially on fire. I couldn't concentrate, there were all these things going through my head. It felt like one of those moments where you grab your hair with your hands and shout out loud because you just can't take it anymore. Luckily, I kept myself together.
It certainly doesn't feel like Christmas Eve tonight. With the rain falling and the sudden onslaught of things to deal with at work. And my brain on fire. Thank goodness I have a couple days to pull it together.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Robot Sent Down

Sometimes I'm at a loss when it comes to human interactions. I feel like a robot or a space alien sent down to study behavior without knowing exactly what's going on. My mind ends up like a scratched record, repeating the same lines over and over with no payoff. When I see certain people together, the record starts skipping.
For me, connecting with someone isn't something that happens often. It's pretty rare, and I find that when people are together in any kind of relationship it's usually easy to spot why: romance, work, friendship, common interests, sexual attraction, stuff like that. I do realize that I'm the last person to be trying to dissect relationships. Maybe the weird thing is not being able to connect with people that often, and the normal thing is just forging connections out of whatever is available.
Still, it brings me back to certain people. I know things about these people, not deep things but patterns and small histories, some facts and stuff. I think about certain combinations of people and become mystified. I journey somewhere in my mind where I imagine conversations, interactions, exchanges. My mind just can't comprehend what's going on.
I think I'm giving myself a headache.

Monday, December 22, 2008

The Calm After the Storm

I'm expecting chaos. It must be around the corner. Things are going too smoothly. There should be bumps, there should be setbacks. But I don't want them.
Today I drove B to the airport at 4:15AM. It was raining and I made it back home in time to sleep for a little bit before work. I almost overslept, but was actually early and things went well. It was pouring rain again as I drove to work. I really need new windshield wipers.
Now I wait for tomorrow, the big day to see how things are going. I'm nervous. I want things to continue going smoothly. I don't want to even think about things going not smoothly because I don't want that to even be an option.
I guess I'll know what happens when it happens, but for now I'm just going to enjoy the peace and calm.

Sunday, December 21, 2008


B and I went to play tennis for the first time in a while. Surprisingly, I hadn't missed playing that much. I think it was all the pressure from league and the tournaments and I was just happy to not think about it for a while. I've still been watching tons of it on TV. The Tennis Channel is playing all the best matches of the year and it's hard not to get caught up again in Rafael Nadal's triumph over Roger Federer in the Wimbledon Championships.
I was shocked when B and me first started hitting today. Things went well. I was hitting the ball better than I have in a long time and it felt really good to play. The ease of playing didn't last the whole time we were there and I found myself struggling as the day went on, but hitting well made me realize how much I love playing when all the nerves and pressure and voices in my head aren't involved.
I want to remember how it felt in those first minutes of playing. I want to always play like that--with freedom, with a sense of fun, with a sense of enjoyment.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

I Saw Him

B and I were in the car on the 101 near the 101/170 split. I looked over and there he was. It was some beat up blue car. We were staying on the 101 while he was going on the 170. It was Santa Claus and he looked happy in the front seat on the way to wherever he was going.

Friday, December 19, 2008

My New Obsessions

1. "Twilight"
I made B go with me last Saturday to the first showing. I wasn't expecting much and there were tons of movies I wanted to see, but that's the one I chose. I got our tickets and woke B up from his slumber to go. The movie had massive flaws, but it also has a crazy, romantic spirit that I couldn't resist. I love doomed romance and obsessive love. Someone told me a long time ago that I had the taste of a 14 year old girl. I guess I still do. I went out and bought the first two books. It's not Harry Potter, but it will do.
2. Jenny Lewis & Rilo Kiley
It started out slowly. A while ago, JG gave me a copy of "Under the Blacklight." Then I read an article comparing Rilo Kiley to Fleetwood Mac. Then I was buying more of their CDs. Then I saw Rilo Kiley in concert at the Greek and started listening to them more. Then "Acid Tongue" got released and me and B went to see Jenny Lewis at the Orpheum. It's been most all I've been listening to ever since. Songs I didn't think I liked, I started liking. It's very similiar to my love for Stevie Nicks and Fleetwood Mac. I like the non-Stevie Fleetwood songs, but her songs are the ones I love the most. I like the non-Jenny Rilo songs, but her songs are the ones I love the most. Current favorites "A Man/Me/Then Jim," "Does He Love You," "I Never," "Pictures of Success," "The Big Guns," "Rise Up With Fists," "Silver Lining," "Close Call," "Under the Blacklight," "The Next Messiah," "Godspeed," and many more.
3. The Shadow Side
I've been looking for the darkess in people. It's there in everyone, but with some people it's more obvious in others. I like seeing how it manifests itself from person to person, how it varies. I like that some people shy away from it, while others embrace it, while others try to make it more than what it is.
4. Vegetable Soup
When B and I go out and it's on the menu, I order it. So far, the big bowl at California Chicken Cafe has been the most impressive. I made my own batch from scratch and it's been hitting the spot on these cold nights. I could never figure out the base broth, I thought it had tons of spices in it, but when B's mom came, she made it and it was amazing. She just used canned whole, peeled tomatoes and added vegetables.
5. Mao Asada & Johnny Weir
They are pretty much the reasons I started ice skating. I was shocked when Miss ML ripped into Johnny when I said I wanted to be like him in class. But to me there are none better. They are both so light on the ice, they're fluid and beautiful and amazing.
6. Lindsay Davenport
I'm so mad at how she's messed with me this past year. She has a baby, retires, comes back, plays, stops playing, plays well, plays badly, enters the Australian Open, announces she's pregnant and withdraws. Ugh. But I will always love how she hits the ball. No one else hits like that. And unlike Mary Pierce and Justine Henin, it's not like what's she's done is unforgiveable. I will never forgive Justine for retiring in the 2nd set against Amelie Mauresmo in the Australian Open Final. And I will never forgive Mary for taking a 16 minute time out against Elena Dementieva in the US Open Semi-finals. But with Lindsay I'm just selfish and love her. I still hope she comes back some day.
7. Reading in the bathtub
I'm usually more about listening to music in the bathtub, but with the weather like it is, I like just getting a book or magazine and taking my time. All the pages end up getting crinkled and wet, but I can't help myself.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

For a moment, the world makes sense

Preface: Usually I ignore people trying to get my attention while I'm riding my bike. Most times they're yelling at me, throwing ice at me, trying to swerve into me. I just try to avoid everyone.
Today on the way home I was riding in the cold, in the dark. I was in a rush to get home because me and B were going over to a friend's for dinner. On the bike path there was this guy who yelled out to me and even over my iPod I heard him and put on the brakes.
"What street is that?" he said pointing.
"Van Nuys," I told him.
"Excellent. Thank you very much," he said and continued on his way.
"No problem."
I ruminated on the exchange for the whole ride back. I kept thinking that life should always be that way. It should always involve people communicating and being polite and respectful and making an effort and appreciating one another. There was something beautiful in those few seconds. I don't know why it touched me like it did, but I was happy to be part of that moment.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

In Drag in NY

Last night I had a dream that I was walking around in New York. I ran into GP, who was dressed in drag. I didn't think anything was weird about it and he seemed perfectly fine. The strange thing was, it wasn't just drag. It was a full make up with prosthetics and fancy clothes. He even had a fake spray tan. His wig was long and blond. It didn't even look like him, but I knew it was him. We stopped and talked about the mail he had to deliver and we went on our ways. He seemed really happy and I was just glad that he was enjoying himself.