I've decided to keep an
ongoing diary/journal online. This is for all my (wired) friends back in
Indiana that I don't write enough, and for anyone who really wants to get
to know me better. If you're not sure who I'm talking about here, you may
find more info under Who's who.
As with the "selected" journal, I'm not putting up anything overly personal up here, so quit skimming for the juicy bits and check out my erotic poetry instead.
Isabelle Allende Blues
I can't bear this sadness
I know now
Why the rain cries down
Skies shaking like sobs
A couple speaks
in Spanish, he sits
as she stand near
leaning into him
their desperate situation.
Ealier I'd told them
they couldn't afford
a nice rental. Not
in a safe area, not
It's my job
I look away,
try to read.
Oh, Isabelle Allende
your vibrant prose
the pain you
bring to life on your
pages. I can't stand
illustrations of sorrow.
That last chapter read
like a poem on murder
recited in the quiet voice
of the stunned mother.
So sad my heart breaks
quietly, snapping with a thud
I give a quarter to an old man
and I watch him walk away
leaning heavily on his cane.
The rain weeps down
a tear-stained wall
May 29 & 30, 1998
What's been going on? Well, work is boring, but since we have a new database that keeps crashing, it's at least busy. My company is so cool, as Allison took us all out last night (uh, that's Tuesday night), and bought us drinks. Then today I got a bonus for working through the mess. I think they gave alot of those, which is really nice. I didn't think the day in question was really *that* terrible.
Lordy, I just realized how tired I am. I feel like I should right more that's current, as all these earlier entries were out of my journal, but I suppose that's enough for now! 'Night.
This certainly does feel like another day! It was a stressful night of trying to sleep. Argh. My living situation just got confused, as I found out this Tuesday that a couple is moving in and they get my lovely room! Have I told you about my room? It's rather cold, yes, and the least private room in the house (bordered by the kitchen, dining room and bathroom), but its got its *own* toilet! I've have it decorated just so, and I Becky even gave me some Butterfly Plant clippings that already make a nice plant for the little room. I'll miss that convenience. Two more people. One bathroom with a sink, shower etc. *Sigh*
David is playing his electric guitar behind me while I write this. It's nice, he's got some really groovy tunes that kinda mellowly take their form as he plays them.
So, today I finally got a chest of drawers! Yippee! I couldn't get the one I had at Willow House down those warren-like stairs, so I've been sadly without for 6 months! I miss my nice set back in Indiana. I have so much nice *stuff* back in Indiana, it has become its own joke! Hey, this reminds me . . .
Tomorrow, ladies and gents, tomorrow marks ONE YEAR IN CALIFORNIA!!! (and in all BOLD for kickers). I found an old journal I'd written right before I came out and laughed myself silly. How different life turns out. Hrm, I should try to write a Reflection for tomorrow's entry.
What else? David and I found Juan's Place, which was recommended highly by Todd. Flour tortilla chips and loads, just loads of guacamole. I forgot to try the Wine Margarita. I enjoyed the *place* immensely. It's sorta dark but clean and cool inside, with cheap diner tables and chairs and an inviting bar you want to sit in all night, drinking and conversing and having a swell time, with yummy drinks and Graded: Greasy-but-Good food. Much the same caliber as Los Tapatios is in Greenwood, IN (of all places, but it's damn good as you Indy/Frankliners know), with just a bit too much more grease. There were only 3 tables occupied at 3pm on a Thursday, but there's a lot of tables. I imagine when it's busy it'd be crowded/loud. Guacamole was of an ubiquitous fair breed, lacking any real stand-out features, but tasty, nonetheless. With the amount of grease, I really couldn't see eating there too often, but the bar may be fun. I'll be back.
OK, I babble no longer. Jasmine is demanding dinner, 10 minutes late at 5:10pm. David calls her the staunch but greedy one and is complaining about this play by play description. Bye bye.
Here's one place where I really feel the public forum of this journal. The really introspective shit. When I read my journals from right before I came out here, it's amazing how much of that *didn't* happen. Downright amusing, if you know me well. I'd type it up here, but last night, when I cleaned my room, I think I packed it somewhere far, far away by mistake. Whoops.
But there's a good place to start. Last night, for the first time since I've moved to this coastal state, I unpacked. Yes, yes, I know those of you who know me well are now doubting the truth in that statement, but David will back me up on this: some major, rare, never-before-seen UNpacking was done yesterday evening in the room where I dwell. And, you know, this looks like a different room. No longer am I living in a sea of clothes/paper/books, but I can now WALK -in more than just a straight line- to many, many (*most*) areas of my room! I can put my watch and my barrette down on my dresser top, and not have to scan rubble for them in the morning.
Dressers, chests of drawers, whatever you'd like to call them . . . they're such an important part of one's furniture, don't you think? Especially to a clothes-hound such as myself. I had a walk-in closet back in Franklin (ask Kellie, the main reason I took the much smaller room in that apartment was because of that lovely walk-in) that Christine (who'd lived there before me) warned me: "That closet will break your heart when you leave, because you'll realize your wardrobe will never fit in one place again." I could hear the wisdom in her words, but could not heed their warning. That, and I left two exquisite wooden dressers (with doors that opened to one or two shelves - perfect for sweaters!) in my parents house back in Indy. Did I not warn you that it was a running joke? *sigh*
And when I moved out here, what did I bring? Clothes. I should have packed at least *two* of those suitcases full of kitchen supplies and other housewares. No, I brought clothing. I had plenty of outfits, but nothing really to cook with. Mom brought out a small suitcase full of kitchen essentials, (which were more or less "lost" [read: stolen] from the commune/co-op thingie I lived in at first) when she came to visit (there was an American Library Association conference in SF last summer).
Lordy! I've never told the story of the co-op here, have I? Whoah, what to tell, what to tell. You never know who's reading, and I could get a little, er, well, not nice.
Hrm, well, I moved into this huge, oh, 5 or so bedroom house, depending on how you counted rooms. Big old "farm house", though not what I saw in farms back in the Midwest. I guess it was the main house for a cherry orchard that used to take up that old neighborhood. It didn't have gas for the first 2 months I lived there. Anyhow, I moved in alone. And stayed in that scary old house, alone. Remember, I had just moved to the "big city" and was a little crime-consciuos/crazed at the time. There was one night that the electricity was off and the entire building was dark when I got home. I'll never forget creeping inside, through that big, dark, empty house . . . up near blind stairs into an unknown upstairs where I hoped to creep along until I came to my room (the farthest possible distance from the front door, of course, and right above it, which sucked once others moved in later). I grappled around until I located candles, then searched for a lighter, and finally got enough candles lit (and my bedroom door safely locked) that I could breathe normally. Hey, I was entirely alone and didn't know my neighbors, let alone the neighborhood/city/state. Freaky. Whoo, then there was the time later when my neighbors had a domestic squabble and one of them threw a mug at the glass door and shattered it, causing me to call the cops (it seriously sounded like the windows on *my* house breaking).
Later, when people moved in, it was worse, but here's where I can't tell as detailed a story as I'd like. Let's just say that my idea of communal living still maintains some sort of respect for material (gasp, choke!) things that allows them to stay where (and with whom) they belong while being shared. I finally put a lock on my door, about a month before I finally moved out.
Here's where I should just mention people. Holly came out with her BF at the time, Michael. They'd driven cross-country and had been camping/climbing mountains/making me jealous all summer. They were out for 2 weeks, and it was wonderful to have Holly around. I miss her.
Unfortunately, I was dating N. at the time. Too damn possessive. That's all I'll say about that.
Then, near the end of Faire, I met Ian. Ok, actually I had met him mid-July, at an after-faire pool party in Pittsburgh (CA). I was diving/swimming, but not having as good a time as I might, as I knew so few people there. One of the few I *did* knew asked me what was wrong, then threw his arm around me and announced to the entire pool, "Hey, everybody, this is Heather and she's not feeling very loved!" Suddenly I was swept away by this mass of smiling, laughing people all pressed up together (around me) and moving on its own. My feet were not even touching bottom. There was this tall, handsome guy about my age who seemed to take me under his wing (or on it, when he and I played Chicken against another pair). *That's* the first time I met Ian, which allowed me to stop in front of his Mom's booth at Northern and say, "Hey, we met at Pittsburgh . . . ". If it weren't for these few instances, I wouldn't know Mary Anne, David, hell, most of my friends out here. Ian has become a great comfort to me. His friendship and outlook are such fun, he can really brighten up my day sometimes. Handy too; he's fixed both my phone line and my electrical outlet recently.
I don't know how much more to say. Mary Anne introduced David and I at a dinner party back in October, but it wasn't until I came back from Christmas break that I realized not only could he talk but he was pretty damn intelligent as well. Both MA and David thought the same of me. I suppose none of us should put too much weight on first impressions.
Anyhow, David and I started dating in January. There's not really much else I feel like disclosing here about that. I put too much of the occasional daily tidbits up here as it is; you don't need my deep introspection too.
Writing. Yes, thanks to Mary Anne asking me to write her a story (and I wasn't at all sure that meant she would take it) in lieu of poetry for the Maiden Voyage Anthology, I am now convinced I can write. Mary Anne is still a great mentor/role model for me in this. Sure, I could have figured out how to send off a story and eventually, even how I should track it, but it's so much nicer to have a friend take your hand and say, "Here, this is how it's done." The business side of writing is the boring, hard part, I think. That and trying to write. Fiction, not just poetry. Hell, now that I'm writing fiction, poetry seems a lot trickier. Now I just need to steal some time to write . . .
Back to housing, I moved in with Todd and Peter for three months, subletting the Kidz room while they backpacked through Europe (lucky slugs). Their space was the attic, and I'm quite capable of WHACKing my head on that unusual beam *BAM* and that one too, yes . . .
Living with Todd was both very nice and somewhat annoying. Only annoying thing really, is that I don't love Todd's music the way Todd does. And he surrounds himself with it. Hell, I just don't generally like constant, loud music in my immediate surroundings. It was something I only discovered then.
But just living with my best friend was really nice. It's been a year since I've lived with Kellie, and I tell you, it's so good to have a real friend to come home to, talk to and hang out with when neither one of you has any pressing plans on a Thursday night. Having Todd around to talk to made California less foreign. Well, this is true of the whole year, but it was nice having him around more.
And living with Peter was interesting, too. I got to know him somewhat, which under any other circumstances probably would never have happened, as we are two *very* different people. Peter's something of a computer geek duke, or prince or something. Those are *my* adjectives, of course. Peter is a practicing curmudgeon. He never lies to spare your feelings, never lets you get away with a seriously bad joke, too flippant of a statement, etc. Very interesting, to pitch my personality against his. I had some long talks with Peter, the most memorable being his vision of the future involving the internet and the role it will take in our lives. His world is almost entirely online, with programs to download only your favorite programs. News brought to you by only the sources you choose. And ads fitted exactly to play on your personal taste. (I don't really remember if the ads thing is something Peter said or if I am extrapolating now. This is all from memory, though I suppose I could break out my old personal journals and see what in there.) Everyone's world is its own separate microcosm, selecting bits from the whole but never having to deal with parts of it that one doesn't want to see. (Yes, I am extrapolating now). We also had an interesting talk about gaming (something I sadly have not done much of at all) and the kinds of characters he liked to play. He once played a very charming, charismatic character who had so much power in his charisma that he took over everything. Not a character I can really see him even wanting to do, making this all the more fascinating. Which you all are, of course. Man, am I babbling! Sorry, kids.
Where was I going? Oh, reflection. So, here I am, a year in California. On my third house, my third job, my third boyfriend. Wow, three threes. If things were going better with 2 of those 3, then I'd take that as a good sign. Maybe I will anyway. I know, I'm probably not making sense any longer. I can sense it.
Ramble, ramble, ramble. Perhaps that sums it up best.
Before I chowed down I started to catch up on the What I'm reading now section of my page. I've actually read 3 books since the last one I logged here. Oh, well. Anyhow, the one I just finished is Isabelle Allende's Of Love and Shadows. (Yes, those both link to the same page).
I'm writing this on David's nice Power Macintosh 7100/66, Power PC, then I'm back to my house, where I almost don't dare write because who knows when I'll be able to open a file that size up next? I need more memory, argh! I can't complain too much, though. It was a totally donated computer.
Sweet dreams, my pretties.
That hike would have been a lot worse if I hadn't been swimming recently. Earlier this week, I finally got to that point in swimming where it no longer feels like I'm dragging a heavy weight behind me. I actually feel good while I swim now, as if I can feel all the good I'm doing for my body. I think this is my third week (2 or 3 times a week), which is sadly rather good for me. I just need to keep it up now. And, speaking of exercise, I also fully intend to start taking belly dancing classes weekly, as soon as I find a good place (in Berkeley? Oakland?) to take them. David even said he'd take me to them, which is very, very sweet of him. He can be a doll sometimes.
All of you that read Mary Anne's journal have already heard about the online erotica ezine that a bunch of us are working on. You can check out her June 4th journal for details on the naming contest if you like. Anyway, I'm the Poetry Editor and I'm co-writing a "How to", "Dear ___", sort of article with another writer. I'm excited about both projects, though I'm just hoping to be able to handle both!! I've got so many ideas that I want to try out . . .
Other than that, not much. I'm getting homesick, a bit. I'd love to spend some time with folk from Indiana. Hell, just being in Indiana for awhile would be such a nice break from the constant city around here. I got all teary today when I was telling David about how much I'd like to spend a weekend camping at a festival at Lothlorien. *sigh* I need to make more money to do that sort of thing, though. Damn.
I've started giving my leftovers from lunch to the homeless people on the street. I never eat them, anyway (they rot in my frig, usually), and I don't get that odd, guilty feeling I get when I give change. These people are *hungry* . . . sitting on the street, asking for food or change or what have you. Working at Homefinders has really clued me into the housing situation out here. It's not surprising there are so many homeless; we must get 2 or 3 times as many subscribers (people looking for a place to live) as listings (available homes) every day! And then, the rents that this causes! North Berkeley's rents went up 15% this year already! A studio apartment in Berkeley goes for $650!! Argh! In Indiana, Kellie and I paid $350 total for our 2 bedroom apartment, in a Victorian House, with a wrap-around porch (and swing), 2 bay windows, built-in bookcase, 10 ft high ceilings . . . out here, it'd go for, hell, with the yard that size, probably $1300 at least. Here's another CA/IN comparison: homelessness. In Indiana, I really never gave it much thought outside of an abstract, "there are terrible things happening in the world". But to see these people everyday . . . it's so hard to pass them by without giving them anything because no matter how poor I am (and I am poor, especially right now), at that moment I realize that I'm lucky, that I have a lot, that there are many people in my life who will help me out long before I'd get to that point, and that's a blessing. But I really can't afford to make a difference, not as big a one as I want to. I want to actually pay attention to politics (and I *hate* politics) and figure out who's going to actually *do* something for these people and vote/campaign for them. But I'm overwhelmed by the activism in this area, and it seems that everyone out here is immune . . . so damn cynical and flooded with "do-gooders" that they only see it as a nuisance when people try to tell them about the horrors that go on. And there *are* so many extremists that I feel like ignoring them all. *sigh*
So, I give my lunch to people on the street. If someone is selling something I might like, I'll buy it. I've bought, in this past week or two: a acoustic guitar CD (ok, it was terrible) from a guy in the BART station, a pair of amber earrings (that was today on the BART, the girl was really cool with really beautiful aura/energy that made me happy when I left her finally), and a poem from a man in a monk's robe (w/jeans underneath) who called me "sister" and offered it to me for free. I paid the $0.25 and chose a secular poem (about butterflies). I like the idea of buying a poem on the street. I think more people should do that. I was very charmed.
Tomorrow, I fully intend to go to the poetry slam at Cafe du Nord, but I have to email Mary Anne and ask if it's erotic haiku night so I can be prepared. Tonight, I try to motivate David to *do* something fun. Wish me luck!
What else have I been up to? Well, I certainly didn't get David motivated enough to do anything Saturday night. He's promised we can do something fun and naturefull tomorrow (my day off). I can't WAIT to get out of the Bay Area for awhile!! Rrgh! It's just one big city for miles and miles and miles, I don't care how many names you give them. From Crockett down to San Jose, curving up through San Mateo through the City itself . . . it just don't stop (and yes, David, Mom, other proofreaders, I used "don't" instead of "doesn't" on purpose). But, wait, I was looking back, not forward. So, on Sunday, I went to the poetry slam, which most of you have already read about on MA's page. Oh, well. Yes, I won third in the Haiku Slam (tied for third, with Lydia) and won $10. I suppose I could put up my Haiku here, though most of these were written in a rush on Sunday, and a few were written at the Slam, since I didn't want to run out of Haiku and have to forfeit (I'm terribly competitive, as some of you know). Ok, here goes. As far as fiction vs. real life, all I have to say is *you* try to fit real life into 17 syllables!
Floating over your aura
Under the hot sun
Do not protect my plants from
Mountain climbing snails
It's raining like tears
Thunder like recurring sobs
Shaking Earth's shoulders
You always leave me
10 dollars a dinner
7 dollar tip
I know your order
You like how I wait on you
Yet we never speak
Tonight our host is Charles
He once told me the sky was
Maxfield Parish Blue
Listen to me dear!
Everything I say today
Turns into Haiku!
First 5 syllables
Next use seven syllables
Then 5 syllables
Tonight we dance with
The daughters of Salome
Don't forget your veil
This shirt has never
been undone before, it slips
Right over my head.
But that is ok
Being undressed by you
Was far more thrilling
Tonight you're wearing
Time to make your Choice
You want to play cards?
But tonight you promised me
Wild Monkey Sex!
Last week was bliss but
So soon you love another
My sheets still smell of you
You call for comfort
For she is now closed to you
And I am always open
The following I suggest not reading if you're my mother.
Your mushroom cap slides
Like a plum velvet lipstick
I swallow you down.
You want to hear a
nother cock-sucking poem?
I'll just bet you do!
No! That is not the end of this journal entry! This is!
Earlier today, David and I went to Muir Woods. Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhh. I *so* needed to get the hell out the damn city. Just to look at nothing but green for a few hours was sheer bliss. The drive out over the Golden Gate was lovely (even if David did complain when I got us lost in the City -- he was indulging my request for more sight-seeing). I love the rolling hills, the shady lanes and the twisty roads of Marin. Then at the park I had my fresh air and dirt under my feet. The hike was a bit challenging, being mostly uphill (until we turned around and went back down). Even off the paved paths, in the middle of a Thursday, Muir Woods is a bit crowded, but oh well. Now, for my evil plan B: Take David Camping. Bwah-hah-ha!So, this weekend I meet David's sister and her husband. We're all having dinner Saturday, including Mary Anne and David's brother who lives in the South Bay. I'm just a little nervous. Sometimes I get so tongue-tied! Very frustrating; I need to be more of a social butterfly. *sigh*