In the Bar

I await my turn. I am polite. Patient looking. Outside. Inside my fortress of solitude, where everything is secret, I rant at the slowness. Prozac people in a Prozac ballet, taking orders, accepting money and plastic, making drinks and change, handing out libation. It’s a thick crowd, hungering for libation, awaiting our turns under a televised baseball game.

The man beside me on the stool looks at me and frowns. I smile at him but decide not to speak. He’s drinking a beer. Looks like beer in the glass, anyway.

He says, “It must be hard to a woman. Learn to walk in heels. Find bras that fit you. Have guys stare at you.”

I’m dumbfounded into silence.

He says, “Fitting a bra is difficult. Men don’t need to learn how clothes fit them, not like bras. Men don’t wear bras.”

I’m about to counter him but I don’t want to speak. Speaking will encourage him.

He says, “I guess some men do, men who are going through a transgender thing, becoming a woman, I guess they need to learn how to walk in heels and fit a bra, if they get boobs. I suppose they get boobs. That’s part of being a woman, right? They also need to wear pantyhose, I guess, which I think is revolting, encasing yourself, like you’re a sausage. Remember that Seinfeld episode when George’s father and Kramer create the mansiere? Man, that was funny.”

He takes a drink of his beer. The bartender looks at me and raises his chin and his eyebrows, expressing to me without words, you’re next, what do you want?

I order a beer. IPA.

The man beside me says, “What was I saying?”

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Floofcular

Floofcular (catfinition) – round sleeping position favored by many house pets.

In use: “The little black-pawed cat was often discovered in a floofcular in a living room or closet corner.”

A Soul-sucking Dream

I thought I’d made it through the dark tunnel once again. I endure the dark tunnel every month, a cycle of conspiracy between hormones, energy, genetics, and whatever else is in my frothy concoction of life. Last night’s dreams proved some tunnel remained to be traversed.

Bottom-lining one of the dreams without dwelling on details, I dreamed a younger self was being given an opportunity by a man named Rob. Just as he was celebrating that, another person came up with a better opportunity. That involved three positions (unspecified in the dream) but the potential was so exciting. I was pleased to be offered such an opportunity. The man offering it told me he had to make some calls, but that was just a formality. He’d get back to me, he said, and went off.

Meanwhile, I was working a job and doing a damn fine job of it – cleaning and detailing cars, a job I didn’t hate, but I was ready to move on. Off on the sidelines of my dream-life, I coped with a validation process. All males were required to be validated. We were given one inch cubes. They were different colors. A raised number signified the top. My number was four. My cube was green.

I stepped into line behind a few young boys. Another young boy was there. He didn’t know what to do. I told him I’d help him.

The process began. As we moved forward, a longer line formed behind us. The process involved us taking our cube up to a man in a lab coat. He put the cube on a reader, then he peered at something, made some annotations, and handed the cube back. He never said a word.

My turn arrived. Another man stepped out from the line’s middle, walked up to the lab man, and gave him his cube. “No,” I said. Marching up, I removed his cube and handed it to him. I pointed to the front of the line, and said, “That’s the order. We’ve all been waiting. It was my turn. You have to wait like the rest of us.”

I was seething, partly because the lab idiot running it hadn’t noticed or done anything about it.

Afterward, validated by lab-coat idiot, I took the boy out with me after he’d been validated, too. I told him, “We’re validated.” He didn’t understand what that meant, so I explained the word’s definition while admitting that I didn’t understand what it meant in this context. Then I found where he was to go and sent him on his way.

Afterward, I returned to another job I had. This was in a chaotic place. I decided to organize the processes. Part of this involved men pissing. They were pissing everywhere. I determined that if we pissed in one place, that piss could be collected and dumped, and everything would be a lot better. To that end, I found a small, square metal receptacle to be a pee-holder. Setting it up in a specific spot, I spread the word, piss here. As I caught others pissing elsewhere, I’d re-direct them to piss at the place I’d established.

When it was time for the piss receptor to be emptied, I discovered it’d been leaking. Piss was all over the dark carpet. This upset me, but I thought, I need to find a better location and receptacle. I was about to do so when the man who’d offered me the great position arrived.

“Walk with me,” he told me. “This way. Let’s get something to eat.” I told him that I’d just eaten but I agreed to walk with him.

We passed under an arch and arrived at an avenue. There he said, “I have some news for you.” I was optimistic and expecting to hear that I was due to start the new position, but hearing his tone and reading his face, I knew otherwise.

“It’s not happening, is it?” I said.

“No,” he said.

“Well, I guess I’ll go with the job Rob offered.”

The man gave me a silent look.

“What?” I said, but I knew the look.

“That dried up, too,” he said.

Heavy disappointment beset me. “I can’t believe this,” I said. “I don’t mind what I’m doing, but I was looking forward to doing more, to being more.”

“I know,” he said. “Sorry.”

He departed. I returned to polishing a car. I realized it was my father’s red 1969 Thunderbird. I’m not going anywhere, I thought.

The dream ended.

The dream depressed me (as all of last night’s dreams did). I woke up thinking, for whom does the bell tolls? It tolls for me, followed by a rant about facing facts about not having writing talent, being a miserable writer, etc., to the point that I encouraged myself to give up.

I know though, that I’m not the best judge of myself. I know that I can’t predict the fickle future. This is just some feeling sorry for myself bottom of the trash can crap. I can indulge in it, but I can’t let it guide me.

Sunday’s Theme Music

Yesterday’s late afternoon was spent at Lake-of-the-Woods Resort. We’d been planning to go to LOW for a couple weeks. A favorite local band, Colonel Mustard, was playing, and friends have a cabin and boat there. We’d do a boat ride, have dinner, listen to music and dance. As a bonus, the air was much clearer in that area, so we’d give our respiratory systems a break, too.

We had a fun time. Colonel Mustard closed with Chumpawamba’s song, “Tubthumbing.” Most people know the part of the song that goes, “I get knocked down, but I get up again, ain’t never gonna keep me down.”

That’s how life goes for most of us. We’re hit with something that floors us. Getting up, we stagger forward, only to get hit again. Each time we’re hit, it’s a little harder to get up, but we usually grit out teeth and declare, “I’m not staying down.”

Suits my mood, so WTF? Here we are, from 1997.

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