Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Inside The Neighbor's Studio (And Not Her Apartment)

The mind can be your worst enemy, trust me, I know. Little things that one person would never notice can speak volumes to another. Even the person doing whatever it is may never know the significance of what they're doing. Why? Because they're not actually doing anything. The human mind has the cursed gift of bending and transforming a harmless and innocent action into an agonizing attack of malicious intent. That's the torment of creativity, maybe that's why artists are fucking crazy.

Which leads me to St. Patrick's Day (the real one this time). I went to New York on Earth to join in and brought Tony with me. Marley wouldn't go; first of all, she doesn't like crowds, second, the idea being immersed in an environment where everyone is engaged in a destructive vice is a rather unsettling thought for a former heroin addict (we invited Suzanne, but she had her own plans in Chicago).

St. Patrick's isn't an anxiety inducing holiday like Valentine's Day, but it does have its own mystique, in that it's a national excuse to drown your sorrows. I saw a dude by the bar with the textbook signs of hurt on his face, and started a conversation about the game he was watching (lonely people in bars have nothing else to do but watch sports). I turned the conversation in the angel direction, and thanks to the sudsy truth serum, it didn't take much prodding to get his problem out of him (so much easier, St Patrick should be the patron saint of angels).

"There's this girl in my building," he said. "We used to always stop and chat whenever we ran into each other, now she hates me."


"I don't know. But she doesn't really talk to me anymore."

Waited for him to elaborate, but he just drank his beer. "And?"

"And what?"

"That's it? That's hatred?"

"Well wouldn't she want to talk more if she didn't have a problem with me?"

"Who knows?" I said. "There's any number of reasons for something like that. There's only so much you can say by the mailboxes in the lobby, maybe now that you've gotten through the usual, "What's your name, where you from, what do you do?" conversations, it's more complicated to keep the small talk going. What, you like this girl?"

"She's cute, yeah, but I'm not devastated or anything."

"So whats the problem?"

He said, "It would just be nice to be appreciated, you know?"

What do you do with a guy like that? Girl doesn't stop for Twenty Questions and he loses his fucking mind. My talk gave his head some healthier (and more reasonable) explanations that should help him in the here and now, but this sort of thing is likely to recur if he doesn't learn to recognize his anxiety. Gotta tell my old classmates about this bar. Looks like I've found a hot spot.

Happy St. Patrick's Day.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

If You Ain't Shit Don't Force It

So Lee ran into Anna-Nicole again. I'd been following him, so I basically crashed the party they were at and bore witness to the whole thing. He noticed her from across the room, she's easy to spot, with that body and her odd haircut, which has an asymmetrical buzz on one side and chin length on the other. Their paths crossed, and when he tried to issue a greeting, she coldly answered with the same, "I told you not to talk to me." Then she turned to a friend and said, "I hate it when I tell people not to talk to me and they do."

"Well I don't know what I did, but whatever it was I'm sure I can make up for it," he said, doing his best to maintain peaceful diplomacy.

"Just leave me alone."

And that was it, detente was over, now all Lee had was anger. And he said, "Well screw you then. You know, you try so hard to project this indie, anti-mainstream image with with that 1983 haircut, but really you're more stuck up than any uptown yuppie bitch."

She just said, "Asshole," and walked off.

Lee muttered, "Fuckin' bitch," under his breath. I scooted over and said, "Hey dude, never mind her," and offered my instant analysis, "she's just got problems, that's all."

"What kind of problems?"

"I don't know," I said, "but that whole image thing you mentioned, you know how it just reeks of effort? She's obviously insecure about something, so she goes out of her way to seem different so that people can't see who she really is. She's probably got low-self esteem. That things she does where she acts like certain people aren't worthy of her attention is probably just a way of making herself feel superior so that she'll feel better about herself."

Lee said, "Makes sense. Kinda sad." I nodded and moved on, projecting out when I found a blind corner. I could tell Lee's anger was alleviated. Even if all I may have done was found a way to make her look pitiful so he'd feel like the superior one, the means wasn't really that important. I don't need confirmation on it. Mission's done. Next, please.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Where The Beer Flows Like The Hudson (But Less Polluted)

So, big doin’s this weekend. First of all, it was Hoboken New Jersey’s St. Patrick’s Day. For those not in the know, rather than compete with the St. Patrick’s Day celebration of a real city, like, say, the one across the river (that would be New York City), Hoboken has their parade and de facto holiday about two weeks earlier on the first Saturday of March. I think the idea is kind of sad personally, but Marley really wanted to go, so she went with Suzanne. Suzanne’s from Chicago, which probably has the biggest St. Patrick’s Day after New York and Boston, so she thought the idea was pretty silly too. But unlike me, she doesn’t judge.

Suzanne could find something fun about a sandstorm, so she kind of felt in her element. Every now and then, they would come across people who in the small dose of a passerby seemed kind of shallow. She sank a little, feeling traces of her former life. But that would end when she looked at Marley, who said, “Oh my god, they’re euphoric! So many of them! It’s like an assault of joy.”

They wandered around some more, and Suzanne said, “You know, when I was in school, I used to party like this. After school for a while too. But when I got sick, it was like, you know, all of a sudden I was like fifty, like the happy youth was done. No more fun.”

“I never really had fun like this when I was alive,” said Marley.

“Well what did you do when you wanted to, like, escape it all?”


Suzanne stood apologetically for a second, then a small crowd let out a loud cheer for a when they saw two guys walking down the street with a keg fridge and Marley started giggling and they went on with their day. “Awesome day!” she told me later. “You should come next year!”

“I’ll get back to you on that.”

Ah, to be young and alive.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

You Wish You Were Special, You're So Fucking Special

Arrogant fucking people really get up my nose. Not as much as they used to, because, you know, I'm fuckin' dead, and I've learned there's more to this world to worry about than unjustified narcissism. But still, when it gets in the way of someone else's complacency, that's when I get involved. Not mad, not even, just involved. Why? 'Cause that's my job.

Ok, so here's Lee. Lee has this thing with a girl named . . . oh, I forget what the fuck her name is. She doesn't matter, so who gives a fuck. Well, Lee gives a fuck, so let's be sensitive to him. For the sake of storytelling, we'll call her Anna-Nicole. Lee met Anna-Nicole at a party. She's not beautiful, but she has a decent face and a statuesque figure, which is enough to qualify at least for crush status in many a guy's heart (even with my lust left back with my rotting corpse I could tell you that). So Lee meets this girl and they exchange names and yada yada yada. She was about as warm as iced down fish in the markets of Chinatown, so that didn't really didn't go anywhere.

Moving on, they know a few of the same people, so their paths cross again at another party, and Lee, who's just bad with names, asks her name again. Now, she takes great offense to this, as if to say, "How could you forget my name with this body?! How dare you!" Sensing the second meeting had gone worse than the first, Lee moved on. He runs into her again later on and just tried to make some small talk, and she responds with, "I told you never to talk to me again."

First of all, Lee doesn't recall her giving him any such order. Second, he's not saddened by this, he's just angry. Mostly because he doesn't deserve to be treated this way, and who the fuck is she to do so in the first place? Sashial told me, "Don't worry about him, he's better off. Fuck that cunt."

I said, "No, he's probably gonna run into her again and he's just gonna get mad. Gotta make sure his happiness isn't messed with."

"Fine, baby," she said, "you do what you have to." She stood there looking at me, then finally said, "What the fuck are you waiting for?"

"The next party."

She smiled and nodded. "Good boy."

I'll let you know what happens.