Sunday, April 30, 2006

Fun With Anagrams

Last night I went to O'Sullivan's to see everyone's favorite local cover band, Lovesick Cousin. When I arrived, the O'Sullivan's marquee (yes, it's the kind of dive with a marquee) was advertising its nightly specials -- porterhouse & tilapia -- on one side and Lovesick Cousin on the other side.

I'm not sure about the porterhouse or the tilapia, but I enjoyed Lovesick Cousin for a good hour and a half before Steve looked out the window and noticed that those specials had been replaced with

Now, personally I would have gone with "hot ass pooter," but, you know, that's just me. We all had a good laugh about the change, including our twenties-ish waitress who claimed she A) was soooooo embarrased and B) had never seen anything like that before.

About an hour later we noticed some furtive movement on the other side of the marquee and witnessed the sign-changers in the act. Guess who. . .yep, our soooooo embarrassed waitress (and two of her pals). When they came back inside we sent Jay out to see what the sign said. He laughed all the way back to our table and reported that he didn't think he could repeat it "in mixed company." Then Steve went to check it out and came back still laughing. "So what does it say?," I asked. Steve just shook his head and said, "You just gotta go see it." So I did:

I bet that's not bringing in a whole lot of business.

PS: Click here to download Lovesick Cousin tunes, including an original that's especially fun if you've recently been dumped by an idiot you never should have been with in the first place who hopes you can still be friends (which I have).

Thursday, April 27, 2006

We're Not Leaving You Behind, We're Just Making Sure You Get Lost In The Shuffle

Students at Stephen H. Clarke Academy, an elementary school over in Portsmouth, don't score very well on the state's standardized tests. Fortunately, the Superintendent of Portsmouth Public Schools has a plan to address this problem: close the school and send those kids to some other school. That should do the trick. Said the Superintendent, "If you have a school that's not functioning, you close it."

Um, you do? You don't want to, maybe, look into why the school's not functioning and, I don't know, do something about it? It makes more sense to just ship the struggling kids off to other schools and hope the change of scenery will somehow magically improve their test scores?

Actually, this is exactly what schools are encouraged to do under No Child Left Behind. Students at schools that don't make "adequate yearly progress" (as measured by standardized test scores) are given the option of transferring to a school that does. Ultimately, "failing" schools must shut down or face privatization.

Implicit in this approach is the idea that poor teachers or schools -- rather than the myriad of issues most struggling students face -- are responsible for low test scores. In reality, it's probably a combination of the two factors, heavily weighted to the student baggage side.

Any idea how easy it is to learn when the only meal you get each day is your federally subsidized school lunch? Or when your parents never read to you at home? Or when you have to miss class frequently to take care of your younger brothers and sisters? Or when you work over 40 hours a week to support your family?

There's a reason we don't find failing schools in affluent areas: affluence makes it pretty easy to focus on school. But shifting struggling students to more successful schools in more affluent areas doesn't change the fact that they are struggling, and it does nothing to address the issues that interfere with their ability to learn.

Clarke is located next to a public housing project. Almost 75% of its students live below the poverty line and therefore qualify for either free or reduced-price lunches. Sending them to a different school will not change that.

It will, however, make it fairly easy to trick us all into thinking you're looking out for their best interests and that you don't want them to get "left behind." After all, in your benevolence, you've rescued them from a "bad" school, swung them up into the saddle of your white horse, and transported them to a "good" school where all of their troubles will melt away.

No Child Left Behind, like many of BushCo's policy initiatives, is cleverly marketed bullshit. If you really want to ensure that public education does not fail a single American student you adequately fund public schools, for starters. If you're serious about not leaving any children behind, you do something to address the problems that make it difficult for them to succeed in school rather than shifting them to a school where their problems are less visible in the aggregate. But BushCo doesn't really want to ensure that public education not fail a single American student. BushCo wants to ensure that public education itself fails. That is why, if you visit the NCLB website, you'll find a lot of talk about "school choice."

The real goal of NCLB is to replace our current education system with a voucher system in which parents shop for schools just as they might shop for a car or a pair of tennis shoes. This sounds very democratic on the surface of things, but the reality is that school choice runs contrary to the democratic notions underlying public education. Students and their families are not consumers of a service called education. The primary mission of public education is to create citizens who will actively participate in our democratic system, and who will work for the common good. Essentially, public schools create the public. It is a public, community mission which cannot be accomplished by the private sector.

It all, of course, goes back to Thomas Jefferson, who drafted a "Bill for the More General Diffusion of Knowledge" in 1779 and by 1786 believed that bill was "by far the most important bill in our whole code." Of it he wrote, "No other sure foundation can be devised for the preservation of freedom and happiness. . . .The tax which will be paid for this purpose is not more than the thousandth part of what will be paid to kings, priests and nobles who will rise up among us if we leave the people in ignorance." In 1787 he urged his fellow politicians to "educate and inform the whole mass of the people. Enable them to see that it is their interest to preserve peace and order, and they will preserve them. And it requires no very high degree of education to convince them of this. They are the only sure reliance for the preservation of our liberty." In 1806, as President, Jefferson declared that "education is here placed among the articles of public care" and added that "a public institution can alone supply those sciences which, though rarely called for, are yet necessary to complete the circle, all the parts of which contribute to the improvement of the country, and some of them to its preservation."

So. . .public education is good for democracy. No wonder BushCo is intent on destroying it.

Wait, Is McCain Just Trying To Trick Us?

Jonathan Chait of the LA Times thinks so. Read all about it.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

This Can't Be Good

I keep having this dream in which I am very meticulously removing slivers of glass -- I mean little tiny slivers -- from my feet with tweezers as I weep in pain. In the dream the soles of my feet are covered with these slivers of glass and I feel like I will never get them all out no matter how long I tweeze. Then (thankfully) I wake up and pet the cat, who is (as always) curled around my head, and I discover that my feet are sliver-free.

Unfortunately, this is not covered in my dream interpretation book, so I'm not entirely clear on what it means. I'm pretty sure it's bad though.

At Some Point You Have To Let Go

My brother and I have been talking about going up to the UFPJ protest in NYC on Saturday. This is apparently a source of great consternation for our die-hard Republican parents, both of whom grew up in the NYC area, my mom in Brooklyn and my dad in New Jersey just outside the city. I think it's the location of the protest rather than the protest itself that has them so worked up. They claim New York is scary and dangerous, despite not having been there in the last 25 years or so. Said my appalled authoritarian father to my fairly permissive mother, "You're not going to let them ride the subway, are you?!"

Hey Dad, maybe you didn't get the memo, but I'm thirty years old. You are not the boss of me!

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Why I Love Living In Norfolk, Part 8012

Four words: Ocean View Community Beach.

Today was the kind of day that's so beautiful you feel guilty being inside. So around 12:30 this afternoon I threw a towel, some suncreen and a book in my bag, glanced at a map, and hopped in the car. Within 15 minutes I was wiggling my toes in the sand along the shore of the Chesapeake Bay (so really Ocean View Community Beach would be more appropriately named Bay View Community Beach, but whatever). This is a little park maintained by the City of Norfolk. There's not much to it except, you know, the beach, which is kinda what I went for.

Plus, there was bonus police activity! Late in the afternoon I was compelled to look up from my book by a woman screaming, "There's kids here! And you're doing this! Do you fucking understand that?!" (I guess screaming the f-word around kids is okay, while doing whatever "this" was is not.) I'd noticed a trio of scantily clad teenagers (I know everyone's "scantily clad" at the beach, but these kids were wearing clothes, not swimsuits, and they were the kind of clothes one associates with hookers rather than with beachgoers) staging some sort of sexy amateur photo-shoot earlier in the day, but I'd ignored them because, well, it was weird and I was reading. When I heard Screaming Lady, I wondered if the sexy photo-shoot might be the "this" she was screaming about, and indeed it was. Shortly after the screaming, two police officers showed up, chatted with all parties involved, and escorted the youngsters off the beach. I'm not sure what law they were breaking, but I sort of have to agree with Screaming Lady that if you'd like to take pictures of yourself on your hands and knees with your (scantily clad) ass in the air, or being felt up by another young lady, or practically humping a signpost, this is probably best done in the privacy of your own home.

The city actually maintains a much nicer, and therefore more crowded, beach park (Ocean View Beach Park) a few blocks down the street, but I think I'll stick with the Community Beach for its odd combination of solitude and the potential for drama. However, I'll have to hire myself a sunscreen boy lest I return from the beach looking like this again:

An Etymology Of Slang

On Friday, my students taught me a new word and I taught them a new word. Turns out they were basically the same word.

During my lunch-block class, I overheard a few of my students "frying" a girl about the neighborhood she lives in. They kept telling her, "Your neighborhood is so boozhy (boozh'ee)," a description that seemed to make her fairly uncomfortable. I'd never heard this boozhy term before, but this is a young lady whose father is a heart surgeon and who rarely wears the same outfit twice, so it's probably safe to assume she lives in a "nice" neighborhood, while the kids teasing her had just been describing a block party in their neighborhood where all the adults had simply tuned their car radios to the same station and hung out on the sidewalk. (By the way, the kids were working on an assignment throughout the discussion-- this generation can multitask like nobody's business.) Anyway, my powers of deduction being what they are, I figured I had a pretty good handle on "boozhy" based on context clues, but I was curious about the word, so I asked the kids.

Me: What's boozhy?

Kids: You don't know boozhy?!

Me: Nope, I've never heard boozhy before.

Kids: Boozhy's like preppie people. Yeah, you know those fancy people who think they're better than you? That's boozhy.

Me: Hmmmm. . .(writing "bourgeoisie" on the board). . .anybody know this word?

Kids: Oh yeah, some French thing.

So I talked briefly about the bourgeoisie within the context of the French Revolution and then within the context of Marxist theory (I like to keep it real on a Friday). And then. . .

Kids: Well that's just like boozhy.

Me: Mmm-hmm.

Kids: That's probably where boozhy comes from.

Me: Pretty cool, huh?

Then I went on (and on and on, apparently) about how interesting it is to study where words come from and how cool language is until one student said, "Dude, you get way too excited about words," at which point I told them they were all "wack" and retreated to my desk to contemplate etymology in silence.

Addendum 05-03-06: Josh, a madras-wearin' Jay-Z fan, has informed me that "boozhy" is actually spelled "boozy." I defer to his mad knowledge of gansta rap.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Welcome To The Long Emergency

This morning I read an article in my local paper about shortages at area gas stations. Shortly thereafter I received a forwarded email that detailed a master plan for consumers to lower the price of gas. The plan made sense -- instead of everyone boycotting gas stations on a particular day, which doesn't do much good since Exxon knows you'll eventually have to give in, this email recommended that everyone boycott a specific company (Exxon-Mobil) entirely until it's forced to lower its prices to attract business. This, in turn, will force the other gasoline companies to lower their prices in order to compete with Exxon-Mobil, and we will have successfully lowered the price of gasoline. Great.

Except the real problem is not that gas is nearly $3 a gallon, but that we are running out of oil. Given that even the best estimates place us (and I mean the global "us") at the peak of Hubbert's peak, wouldn't now be a pretty good time to start thinking seriously, I mean really seriously, about alternative sources of energy? Answer: no, several decades ago would have been a good time to start thinking about that. Now would be what we call imperative. Unless, of course, you kind of enjoyed the Great Depression.

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Cat Meets Fish

Although Luna is a pretty smart cat, it's taken her nearly six months to discover that we also have a fish. She's spent the last few days trying desperately to figure out how to get the fish -- whether to play with or to eat, I'm not sure -- while I repeatedly explain to her that the fish was here first. See, what Luna doesn't know is that Fish (yes, the Fish's name is Fish, he's a fish for the love of god) has been here all along. Fish came to live with me over a year ago after one of my students and one of A-Rod's students decided that the best way to achieve their goal of getting us to fall in love with each other was to bestow matching fish upon us. While this seems like a foolproof plan to even the least romantic among us, it didn't quite work out that way (and PS, I could have done without all the resulting drama). At least Fish has a new mission in his little fish life, which is to torment my cat with his mere existence. It's actually quite entertaining, especially if you're the sort who doesn't own a television.

Saturday, April 15, 2006

I Cannot Live Without Books

Last week at "Cogan's Thursday," which is apparently about to become "Softball Practice Thursday" (note to whoever's in charge: couldn't we practice on Wednesdays? I have Thursdays set aside for drinking), Steve and Josh and I got to chatting about five things we would prefer not to live without (mine: wine, music, books, pets, & the ocean). Since we're nerds (the cool kind, not the nerdy kind), books were on all three of our lists and Josh asked us to name our three favorite books. We were settling our tab at the time -- it was 11:30 on a school night and I was fairly drunk -- so I told Josh I'd get back to him, but not before he'd mentioned that A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man is one of his favorites. Now, I know Josh well enough at this point to know that he was not trying to impress anyone with his love of James Joyce, and he knows me well enough to know that a man who claims to dig highly intellectual crap is much more likely to arouse my suspicions than my libido (especially if he went to UVA), so I believe him about Portrait of the Artist.

I'm just surprised a book by James Joyce would make it onto anyone's top three favorite books list. Top three best books, maybe, but favorite books? I've read Portrait of the Artist and I know the writing is phenomenal -- I mean, it's James Joyce. I think I might even have enjoyed the story, but I read it in high school 14 years ago (yikes!) so I can't say for sure. I remember that I liked it, and I had a good English teacher so I felt like I really understood it. But I also remember that it just wasn't my kinda book. And the more I thought about my favorite books vs. Portrait of the Artist, the more I realized something that occurred to me a while ago about my appreciation of the arts: there are a lot of things I recognize as good art that I just don't like. There are all sorts of books, paintings, songs, etc. whose artistic merit I value but that just don't speak to me.

I'm not sure if other people make this distinction, but isn't that the whole point of art? Isn't it cool that A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man speaks to Josh in a way it doesn't to me, and that some other book speaks to me in a way it may not to Josh? And that there is something universal in the other's favorite that allows us to appreciate its goodness without having to fall in love with it?

I've read a lot of books, most of which I've appreciated as quality literature without coming to love them. I've also read a handful of books that are complete crap from a literary perspective, and I've even liked some of them despite their lack of artistic merit. But my favorite books are the books I've read and fallen in love with, books that make me smile while I'm reading them because they're just so good, books that my family sees me reading and asks, "Haven't you already read that book? Like five times?," books that have changed me in some way, books I wouldn't want to be stranded on a deserted island without. There are several more than three of those, but after much consideration I've managed to narrow it down. . .

The River Why by David James Duncan

The River Why is essentially a book about a guy, Gus, who really likes to fish. He moves to a cabin in the woods along a river and devises "the ideal schedule" centered entirely around fishing and notes a few ways to actualize this ideal schedule: "avoid friendships, anglers not excepted (wastes time with gabbing); experiment with caffeine, nicotine, to eliminate excess sleep; do all driving, shopping, gear preparation, research, etc. after dark, saving daylight for fishing only." Gus quickly realizes that his ideal schedule is not bringing him any joy, that he and everyone around him is destroying the natural world, and that what is missing from his life is some sort of spiritual connection with others and with nature. The River Why is a funny but deep study of ecology, spirituality, love, and the connections among the three. It always makes me want to spend some quality time by the water and to learn more about Eastern philosophy.

Lamb: The Gospel According to Biff, Christ's Childhood Pal by Christopher Moore

You can tell from the title of this book that it's hilarious and irreverent. What you can't tell is that it's so much more than hilarious, and that what appears at first to be mockery is actually a deep respect and admiration for the core teachings of the world's major religions. Lamb chronicles the life of Jesus as a young boy learning to become the Messiah. He travels around the world living with various religious gurus who help him shape his message that "love is not something you think about, it is a state in which you dwell" and that "the kingdom [of God] is open to everyone. Ev-ree-one, get it?" This is a book that makes me laugh out loud while reminding me of the beauty of what Jesus stood for. Every time I read it I come away feeling more enlightened, and sometimes I even find new jokes.

Winter's Tale by Mark Helprin

I don't even like winter and I love this book, which is 673 pages of winter. Winter's Tale is beautifully written and magical. It is a novel of big ideas --love, god, justice, and morality -- set in a fantasy version of New York City. Just reading this book makes me happy to be alive. Hell, just reading the first sentence of this book makes me happy to be alive: "There was a white horse, on a quiet winter morning when snow covered the streets gently and was not deep, and the sky was swept with vibrant stars, except in the east, where dawn was beginning in a light blue flood." My friends have learned not to mention Winter's Tale because they know that within minutes they'll be rolling their eyes and wishing I would shut up about how wonderful it is.

So there's my list of the three books I most adore. To the best of my knowledge, none of them have won any awards. I've never seen any of them on a summer reading list, nor is Oprah considering one of my picks for her next bookclub selection (thank god!). But they're my three favorites because, in addition to being well-written, they just make me happy. And now, if you'll excuse me, I'd like to go re-read each of them.

Sunday, April 09, 2006

Holy Bad Architecture, Batman!

In the spirit of Jim Kunstler's Eyesore of the Month, I offer these two monstrosities currently under construction near my parents' house (which is not a monstrosity) on the Outer Banks of North Carolina.

Exhibit A:

This is a perfect example of what geographers call "maladaptive diffusion" -- otherwise known as "what the fuck is that doing here?!" Note the psuedo-Southwestern stucco and tile roof. Note the corinthian (!) columns. Note the proximity to a large body of water (in this case, the Currituck Sound). Note how the longer you look at it, the more you feel like throwing up.

Exhibit B:

I don't even know what this is. I mean, I know what it is: it's somebody's house; I just don't know what they were thinking. Perhaps the owners have a shit-ton of children and need all those rooms to accomdate their extraordinarily large family. Or maybe they feel most at home in hotels and decided to create a space that just screams "Embassy Suites." Most likely they simply suffer from the fairly common affliction of having oodles and oodles of money but absolutely zero taste.

When construction first began on this monstrosity, I thought they were building condos. Ugly condos, but condos nonetheless. I was pleased that some developer was finally building something that sort of made sense, since most of the working folks who live on the Outer Banks can no longer afford to live on the Outer Banks. But nope, some developer is building yet another ostentatious piece of crap for wealthy northern tourists morons tourons who will probably leave their empty Corona bottles on the beach. The joke's on them though: that place is gonna be a bitch to heat and cool when the oil runs out.

Saturday, April 08, 2006

George Allen, You Are No Thomas Jefferson

Dear Senator Allen (R-Virginia),

I read in the paper this morning that in announcing your bid for reelection you described yourself as “a common sense Jeffersonian Conservative.” Since you earned both your History and Law degrees at Jefferson’s own University of Virginia, I'm confident you are well-aware that Jefferson was not a conservative and that you are no Jeffersonian. Perhaps you’re hoping the vast majority of Virginians merely admires Jefferson in the abstract and lacks the critical-thinking skills needed to detect the paradox in describing yourself as Jeffersonian or Jefferson as conservative. Such a hope would not surprise me given your efforts to destroy public education in Virginia during your six years as Governor, but as a Social Studies teacher I can assure you that a host of good teachers continues to produce citizens who can think for themselves and who know that Jefferson’s party was not the party of wealth and privilege.

Thomas Jefferson championed civil liberties and valued those civil liberties over security. He was a staunch advocate of the religious freedom guaranteed by our separation of church and state. Jefferson’s faith in our republic rested squarely on the ability of citizens to criticize their government in speech or in print. He was a steadfast proponent of public education and believed that quality education was the cure for most of society’s ills. As a student of the Enlightenment, Jefferson openly embraced change and hoped that each generation would improve the political system he helped establish. In short, Thomas Jefferson was the antithesis of what you and today’s Republican Party stand for.

Please refrain from insulting him -- and us -- by implying that your beliefs are in any way similar to his.

Friday, April 07, 2006

We Take Politics Seriously Around Here

When I was in the sixth grade, my fourth-grade sister ran for Treasurer of our school’s Student Council Association (SCA). She didn’t win, and it’s all my fault: I didn’t vote for her. I didn’t think she was the best candidate. Sure I was torn, but not because of any loyalty to my sister or any faith in her ability to keep track of money.

As I recall there were three students vying for the envious position of SCA Treasurer: a kid named Melvin who had the hots for my sister, my sister, and the kid who won. Melvin’s campaign speech centered around the dubious statement, “I like to keep money.” Even as an eleven-year-old I knew that treasurers aren’t supposed to keep money, they’re just supposed to count it. So obviously I couldn’t vote for Melvin. I had it narrowed down to two candidates and, well, the other kid’s speech was just a little bit better than my sister’s. He sort of made me feel like he was qualified to do the job in a way that my sister wasn’t. But it wasn’t as easy to reject my sister’s candidacy as it had been with Melvin. I struggled with the decision, and in the end I voted for the candidate I thought would make the best treasurer: the other kid.

I thought I had done the right thing. I remember announcing this at the dinner table shortly after the votes had been counted and my guy had been declared the winner. I got grounded. For like a long time. I distinctly recall my father inquiring as to how I thought President Reagan would feel if his own sister hadn’t voted for him. I distinctly recall trying to explain to my father that if President Reagan’s sister didn’t think he was the right man for the job she shouldn’t vote for him. It didn’t go over well.

In retrospect I should have voted for my sister. She would have made a kick-ass SCA Treasurer. That girl can manage money like nobody’s business. Plus it was freakin’ SCA Treasurer -- how much control would she really have had over the coffers of Fairfield Elementary School?

But you know what? I stand by my decision not to vote for my sister based on the sole qualification of her being my sister. If she ran for public office now there’s no way in hell I’d vote for her. I love my sis, but I can’t think of a single political issue we agree on. She wouldn’t vote for me either. I guess President Reagan would ground us both.

I Bet Nobody Saw THAT Coming

Ah, Plamegate. The mysterious name-leaker has yet to be officially determined, but now that we know Bush told Cheney to tell Libby to leak classified intelligence about Iraq’s efforts (or lack thereof, as it turns out), to procure uranium yellowcake from Nigeria, is it so crazy to think that Bush, Cheney & Co. might have been involved in outing Plame?

Eventually we’ll get to the bottom of this, and eventually Bush will be called upon to fulfill his promise to fire those within his administration who committed a crime in revealing Plame as a CIA operative. I just wonder. . .how does one go about firing oneself?

Thursday, April 06, 2006

John McCain, You Lost Me

Senator John McCain (R-Arizona) has long been one of the few politicians I admire and respect. I often don't agree with him but I've always considered him a man of principle and integrity. Despite my leftist views (and they're pretty far left), I voted for him in the Republican primary of 2000 and then wrote him in for president the following November. I'm a firm believer that voting your conscience is not, as many people argue, throwing your vote away. Plus I live in Virginia, which has been successfully gerrymandered to deliver the state to Republican presidential candidates nearly every time. So I felt pretty good about casting my vote for McCain and I slept a little easier at night knowing that I'd voted for someone I believed in.

That was the 2000 McCain. The 2006 McCain is not getting my vote. Not even if he were running for class treasurer (I have a long and controversial history when it comes to voting for class treasurer, but I'll save that story for another time). McCain has recently done two things that call his political integrity into serious question.

In March, he endorsed South Dakota's criminalization of abortion, which doesn't conflict with his anti-choice record but doesn't exactly demonstrate respect for the rule of law. South Dakota's new abortion law is in direct violation of a Supreme Court ruling and, you know, states just can't do that. I guess McCain figures he has a better shot at winning his party's nomination if he follows in Dubya's footsteps and completely disregards the Constitution.

As if that hadn't degraded his political reputation enough, on "Meet the Press" this past Sunday McCain said that he thinks "the Christian right has a major role to play in the Republican Party. . .because they're so active and their followers are." This would be the same Christian right whose leaders McCain described as "agents of intolerance" back in 2000. It's not like these whack-jobs have grown more tolerant over the past six years, nor should the religious beliefs of these (or any) extremists shape public policy. Perhaps the previously principled McCain simply decided that hopping in bed with these agents of intolerance was a small price to pay for the Republican nomination.

Unfortunately, his strategy just might work. But he's lost my vote and my respect.

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Despite Its Occasional Difficulty, Honesty Really Is The Best Policy

Do you remember that night right after Thanksgiving when you met me and my brother and sister at Colley Cantina? It was shortly after we began dating and I voiced some concerns that we might not be looking for the same thing. Remember how I told you that I was "the queen of monogamy" and that "I don't do casual"? Remember how you responded to my fears by saying, "Let's try something different: let's be completely open and honest with each other"?

I do. I remember it because I consider openness and honesty to be the foundation of any relationship, and because it was that conversation that made me believe I could trust you.

When did you decide you were no longer bound by that agreement? When did you decide you had so little respect for me that you didn't need to be open and honest with me? When did your desire for casual female companionship become more important than my desire for a meaningful relationship? When did you relinquish responsibility for everything but your own feelings?

A lie of omission is still a lie.

I don't know when you realized you didn't have feelings for me, but I do know it was long before you said so, and I suspect that you wouldn't have even said so if I hadn't asked. Because, really, why would you? Sure, there's that bit about openness and honesty above, but you knew if you told me you weren't into me there'd be no one across from you at the dinner table or underneath you in bed. So you allowed me to believe that the time we spent together meant something, and I bought it because, well, I like to think that people aren't shitty.

All of that was pretty callous, and your approach to the conversation wherein you contemplated aloud why you just weren't "feelin' it" and uttered platitudes like, "I think you're a nice person" was painfully insensitive. However, none of that was quite as damaging as your insulting and unreasonable expectation of continued friendship.

You used me. Why would I want to be your friend?

Sunday, April 02, 2006

"Don't Think Twice, It's All Right"

How is it that Dylan always manages to have the exact song you need? Oh yeah, it's because he's a fucking genius.

I Refuse To Allow April To Suck As Much As March Did

Ordinarily, due to my SAD, February is the month that makes me want to kill myself, but this year it was March that really kicked my ass. Mostly I just had a rough month at school, but my job is pretty important to me so I take things like that to heart. If you find yourself near tears at the end of the workday and you start thinking to yourself "well, I suppose I could come in tomorrow and sit at my desk and cry all day or I could take the day off and try to regain my sanity," it's probably time to take a day off. Especially if you are not, by nature, a crier. I know we all have days like that, but most of my March felt that way.

So when April dawned clear and warm and beautiful yesterday (actually, I'm told April dawned kind of drizzly and warm yesterday and only got beautiful later, but, you know, poetic license) I took it as a sign of good things to come. And I'm sure there are good things to come, but first there's this: I had begun to suspect that Dave, who I had pretty much fallen for, was merely killing time with me. When I asked him about this last night he confirmed that while he thinks I'm "a nice person," he's "just not feelin' it." Not kidding. I'm paraphrasing the overall message, but these are words that actually came out of his mouth.

So if it's all right with everyone, I'm just going to ignore the calendar and count last night as part of the suckiness that was March. I may need to count today too, because I plan to do a bit of wallowing (even though Steve has my Eva Cassidy break-up CD, which it's hard to properly wallow without -- I'll have to make do with Jeff Buckley).

And PS, I'm a hell of a lot more than a nice person. Just ask my brother.