2006. and much more.

i'm a few days late with this post ( give me credit for posting twice in one day, no?), but i have to say, i feel quite at ease with 2007. ease. easy. its comfortable. 2006 was quite a year. a year of a lot of things, really. transitions. discomfort. easing, possibly, into the hopefully eventual ease.

i have now completed (well, a couple weeks ago) my first year back in los angeles, after being away for 12 years and swearing that i would never move back at least 100 times. one thing i've learned is to never say never. i find myself doing the most surprising things.

not unsurprisingly, the move back has proven to be much more difficult than the move away (when i was 19...oh, 19). then was college, and dormitories that looked like sanitariums, and van gogh posters on the wall. letters from home that made me cry, and my bad habit of sending my key card through the giant dishwasher on my discarded cafeteria tray. i was a big fan of cereal then (still am. i had to laugh out loud the other day while watching one of the college girls on the gilmore girls stuff her jacket pocket with apple jacks to prepare for a boring lecture class), and the small(er. smallER jug. neither jug is actually small) jug of gallo sangria (passed by one at the supermarket yesterday, and couldn't help just staring at it in dismay for a minute or two) my friend jon used to buy me at the safeway.

i made friends fast, then, even though i thought i wouldn't. dormitories have a way of doing that, a sudden haphazard crashing together of personalities. we were a small, but loud, gang of seven, in the elevators, walking past the zoo to the beach at night to make bonfires, deriding the sorority girls who drank too much and threw up in the hallways. i remember feeling that the world seemed made for only me, yet at the same time, not so sure how i fit into it.

there were a few more years in san francisco, with each the world feeling less and less like my very own. i was the artist, i was the singer's girlfriend, i was the zinester at kinkos at 4am. i was also the girl who fainted in the street, the girl who was afraid of china town, the girl whose head hurt, all the time.

and then there was portland.

truth be told, it felt like the end of the road. the first year was awful, and i found out, the hard way, how not-so-buoyant i had become. so much has been made about the pacific northwesterners not looking kindly on californians in the 90's, but really and truly, they didn't. but soon my skin grew thicker and my fingers webbed and i lived in large and strangely colored houses whose roofs blew off down 39th street. i made friends, sputteringly. i experienced, truly, the most magical music, elliot smith at ejs at two o clock in the morning, hazel at la luna, built to spill and the spinanes and guided by voices, and oh my word, the blackbird. every single second of the blackbird.

i did so many things i never imagined i would do, for better and for worse. and one day, the skin on my hands and arms started to look really familiar, and i saw past my lipstick color in the mirror, and in going back to school, i learned so much about everything not academic.

and i made more friends, or they made me, this time folks that felt like family. and i made holidays with them, and we had traditions, and nicknames and rules. and one day i was 24 at chopstix and the next day i was 30 at chopstix, and...how did that happen so fast?

it was our town. just like the gogos, but 20 years later, and 1000 miles north.

but yes, back to the subject. 2006.

i'm here, again. my arm, broken in late 2005, is better (amy, when it happened, while we were trying to figure out whether or not it was broken, came up with this gem: "i mean, does it work? like an arm? no? then its broken. at least philosophically."). i bought my little white honda in marina del rey, still nameless. i spent a lot of time looking for a job, four times. i fell in love with a boy, while thinking and keeping my eyes open. i fell in love with a dog, with total abandon, in a parking lot, with eyes shut, mostly to protect them from the licking. i found old friends, slowly and with arms held out, boundary style. i read for pleasure. i drove around in the hot hot heat, windows down, radio loud loud loud. i grew my hair long enough to put in a pony. i had one of the hardest cries of my life, mid july, 2 am. i went to arizona. i found that kdoc plays perry mason at noon. said boy found perry mason on dvd (eyes wide open, i love him, i thought.). i cooked a lot of meals, some fancier than others. i spent copius and vastly
entertaining hours at my grandma's. i learned to like flowers. i was sick, and then better, and then sick again. and i knit a lot.

have discovered that yes, i'm nowhere near as buoyant as i was at 19, but good god, who wants all that enthusiasm now? not when there's yarn and west wings and dogs and boys and best friends, and moms and grandmas and fonts for christmas...no way, man. i'm good.

ps to nicole, i was really trying to find a way to work "sorrow floats" into that last paragraph, somehow find a way to blend it with the theme of buoyancy and who needs it when sorrow floats, too, but i couldn't figure it out. apparently, until just now.

so, ok, in review, things i loved in 2006 (and i'm only including the uhaul because i've totally forgiven the company as a whole for breaking my arm. forgiveness is very 2007:


i should be in there somewhere. really!
lms said…
you know, i KNEW you were gonna say that!

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