In a windowless van on the way to bolinas with surfer bros.
Today, I will tell you a story about why I love to check luggage when I fly. I typically don’t, but sometimes I can’t resist, and I put my card down for those $25, and walk away with just my tote bag into security and it feels like liberation. Being able to idly browse Hudson News and carry a coffee while I roam the terminal, not having to push a suitcase full of stuff is better than anything.
The last time I went to Dominican Republic (where I was born) was approximately 500 years ago. I was 13. Survey any group of women you know, and they will tell you: 13 is the worst. It is purgatory. You no longer have the innocence of childhood, but haven’t quite found the sense of self you develop in high school.
A lot of Dominican kids spend their summer vacations in the homeland. Most of them look forward to it. Not me. Dominican Republic was super hot, the rolling blackouts at my grandparent’s house was annoying, I hated having to take crowded minivans to get around in DR, and I hated being paraded around in front of dozens of relatives. In other words, I was a spoiled, bratty 13 year old who couldn’t appreciate anything outside of my little bubble of air conditioning, Nirvana CDs, and the 17 books I always had out from the library.
None of that mattered. I had to go for two whole months.
My godfather works for a major airline and got me and my parents buddy passes. If you’ve ever used these, they have a long list of rules about what you can wear and what you can say. No flip-flops. No tank tops. No provocative clothing. No telling anyone you’re on a buddy pass. No asking for favors or drawing attention to yourself.
My mother made me wear a pair of patent leather flats, a white blouse, and a long, uncomfortable skirt. My hair was blow-dried stick straight. I had to wear pantyhose. My wardrobe at the time consisted band tshirts and ill-fitting jeans. I was not happy.
The other thing about using an employee pass was you had to fly standby. This was no problem in JFK. We flew out of there easily, and made it to Miami, the first leg of our trip. When we got there, we realized everyone in Miami was trying to get to Dominican Republic. It was July 1, after all. We were in for a long day.
Out of control dress game today.
10 Things To Love
1. Listening to the ocean while looking at the moon (this is me, currently)
2. Eating baked goods that have your name written on it (cakes, cookies, etc)
3. Starting a new notebook
4. Crossing items off a to-do list
5. Remembering an inside joke and laughing
6. Waking up, looking at the time, and realizing you still have 3 hours of sleep left
7. The first sip of coffee at the beginning of the day
8. Finding a captivating long read for your morning commute
9. Getting a reminder to check into a flight the day before a trip you really want to go on
10. Raiding your parent’s fridge after they go to bed
Happy Valentine’s Day!!!
R Kelly - Real Talk Behind the Scenes (by TayZsucks)
As we enter the pre-teen phase of this writing experiment, it’s becoming clear that if it’s going to continue, shit’s going to have to get real. This is pretty much an extended version of Natalie Goldberg’s Writing Down The Bones technique. You write bullshit for a while until you hit what you actually want to say.
And if you don’t want to write something, then that’s where you need to head. It’s better when you’re not putting it in a public blog. Self-censorship is required in a very public Internet. Not that I’m about that overshare life anymore. It might appear that way to people who don’t share a lot over social media, but what I present is a highly edited version. I used to talk about more guys I was dating, but now I keep very quiet about that aspect of my life.
There are two kinds of people in this world: people who love being written about and almost fetishize the fact they are dating a “writer” and people who never want to be mentioned, even if it’s in a positive light. I prefer the former, who doesn’t want to be written about? I don’t think anyone’s ever written about me, my ex-boyfriend once said he thought about writing a short screenplay on our on-again, off-again relationship. I wonder if he ever did. I don’t know if I’d want to watch it, but it’d be nice to know it existed.
Writing about other people is a tricky business. Anne Lamott is famous for saying, “If people wanted you to write warmly about them, they should have behaved better” which is the kind of writer justification everyone loves to hear but burning all your relationships in written effigy doesn’t seem worth it. That’s what fiction is for, a mixture of truth and lies.
The screenwriter ex loved to be written about. I wrote a few different pieces about him (on-again, off-again relationships are highly dramatic and tend to inspire many words) and he loved them all. Whether it was the added attention or words, is up for debate. And what was written wasn’t always positive. But he took it all in stride. I definitely miss that, being allowed to mine the relationship for stories and do that outright, without pretending I’m not filing everything away for future use.
I file pretty much everything away to be written up later. I just haven’t gotten to it yet. The thing is, with rare exception, you really have to be careful once you start writing other people into the plot.
My marathon is going to be there in late September, getting inspired for poutine carb-up.
Another vintage hotel selfie.