The Self That I Was

14 Apr

I have a lot of stories. People always tell me, “you should write a book,” and I want to, but I know it isn’t time. For years I felt like a character in my own life, observing myself go through experiences at which I, myself wondered at.

Like the time I got locked in a convenience store at 2 a.m., or the time I went on a date with a guy who had ten apple martinis and managed to grab my boobs as we hugged goodbye. He left me with the check.

Or when I stood barefoot on a table in Israel and danced until the sun rose.

There was the time I lived in an alleyway apartment with two Indian guys, one of whom had their Mother, Father and Aunt stay with us for a week during the Folsom fair; an S&M fest for those who don’t live in SF.

There was the time I got laid off, worked in a clothing store and dated a man who owned Disney movies – I call him my low self-esteem boyfriend.

There was the time a man named Obay stopped me in the street and told me I was a, “special being.”  Out of desperation, I listened to my fortune and let him chant over me with crystals for twenty minutes, “clearing away the bad energy and freeing my large angel wings.” My boyfriend had just broken up with me after four days of living together – oddly enough, all that he predicted came true.

There was the four day period where I lived in a palatial apartment in New York complete with statues, jet-black marble and a spa bathtub. I wandered through the MOMA by myself and ended up on a date with an unattractive New Yorker who didn’t have enough money for dinner so he kept reminding me, “that we were just going for drinks.”

Or when I met the Manager of Death Cab for Cutie and discovered he lived in the apartment below mine. The night we met I ended up front row at a Kings of Leon concert. I protested that I didn’t have a ticket (or money), but he assured me, “you don’t need to worry.” I thought he was lying – then we met the band.

The last time we hung out he took me took a low-rent strip club, wads of cash in hand and complained about his girlfriend whose name was Eva Lovelace; somehow I felt the need to never see him again.

Then there was the time I met Mark Zuckerburg at a start-up award after-party and ended the conversation due to my second hand embarrassment for his lack of social skills.

Or the time when I ended up running the Midwest Media Relations for Starbucks at 23 with almost no professional skills.

My first week I met the Chicago Bears quarterback, Rex Grossman who I had to represent for a Starbucks Winter launch event.  All Grossman had to do was throw a snowball through a fake Gingerbread House window.  He continuously failed, while I tried to control every single sports reporter in Chicago.

Then there was the time a glass cabinet full of glassware fell on me, and I was trapped beneath it for two hours.  I watched my blood leak out onto the floor, while praying I wasn’t scarred.

These things just happen to me. Maybe it’s because I’m open to people and life; maybe it’s because I am bold and embrace experience; maybe it’s because at times I am just plain stupid.

Regardless, I haven’t told these stories because I was still in them. They were me and how can one write oneself? It is too painful, too heartbreaking to stare the present in the face, and some of these moments were far from glorious.

Still, they are mine, and I love them because at least I haven’t been bored. Though now things have changed, maybe I’m more grown-up, maybe I just got a bit smarter, but I will tell my stories, shame and all, and laugh through them.

Laugh at my foolishness, at my absurd effort, at my absence of boundaries, at my inexplicable desire to understand everything even if I knew it was questionable, laugh at my fascination at all that I encountered.

I will love and laugh at that lost girl, and hope that others recognize their self in all that I’ve lived.

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