Tuesday, June 16, 2015

dragging invisible weight.

Wide shot opens.  It's the side of a highway with dead grass and empty fields of brown and tan.  Suddenly a girl enters frame from the right, she seems to be trudging, dragging something, and as she steps in a bit more, we see that she has a leash-like cuff around her wrist.  She's got a chain attached to the cuff, and her arm is straightened, but she's lazily and begrudglingly dragging whatever is chained behind her.  She seems frustrated, and gives it a big tug, suddenly this corpse-like man stumbles into frame.  He is dragging his feet, seems to be unable to give much energy into this walk, but he follows her, letting a grunt out here and there. We watch them drag across the screen at a medium struggling pace, and they exit frame.


The same woman is standing at the counter, checking people's books out for them.  She has a very blank, far away look on her face. The zombie-like monster is still chained to her wrist, but it's a reasonably long chain.  He has found himself a chair in the corner about 2 meters or so away from her.  A man with glasses comes up to the counter with several books.  She starts ringing them out with a scanner gun.

Woman: Do you have your library card?

Man: Sure
(he gets out his card and hands it to her)
       (cont) Hey, what's that?
(points to the corpse.  Corpse weakly looks up at him and very quietly groans)

Woman: Oh that?  That's just my relationship.

Man: Huh. I think my sister had one of those for a while. But he was never, quite so...
     (he motions over his own face in reference to the burned crispiness of the corpse, CUT TO the corpse and we get a better look at him with tattered clothes, close to being burnt to a crisp, maybe missing lips, his teeth look pretty broken up)

Woman: Yeah, well, every one is different.

Man: Did you do that to him?

Woman: I guess so.  Well -- I don't know. I'm not really sure anymore.  But I'm the one who got stuck dragging him around.... at least until he finally dies.

Man: How long will that take?

Woman: (frustrated) I don't know, is there anything else I can help you with?  Just take your books.


I've been listening to Echosmith radio on Pandora.  It's been the soundtrack to my runs in the morning, my drives home late at night, the background to my writing in the middle of the night with a whiskey on the rocks next to my laptop.  It consists of Bon Iver, Vance Joy, Head and the Heart, and of course accompanied by my past loves of Lumineers, Monsters and Men, Taylor Swift (1989 not her other stuff). 

I run in the morning, during June Gloom where the air is foggy and the mist sits in my lungs while I huff and puff and let the tears run down my face.  I wear sunglasses, a hat, and a hoodie so no one can see my face.  They don't know that I'm a mess, they're probably just looking at my dog bounding ahead of me at full speed, keeping me motivated. 

Bobby has no idea in his joyful gallop that he's leading along dead weight. I run because it's the only way to find release before I have to start my day.  I have to let go of seeing you in my dreams and kissing your face, hearing you tell me you love me, make love to me, then later on yell at me about how awful I am over an imagined phone, night after night, and waking up with the same bed covers that trick me into thinking you might be underneath them when I wake up.  But you're gone.  You were never there. 

It's been a long time for you, to others as well.  They think it's certainly been long enough to stop missing you.  But they don't see you in their dreams.  They don't hold you one night and get to spend hours laughing and being so happy with you, only to wake up to you being gone.  They also don't spend the next night begging and pleading with you not to leave me like I left you. I wake up and you're gone again, but I'm trying so very hard to keep it together until I can finally get home and away from the world again that evening.

Each hour that goes by, my brain panics about all the other things I need to do that day before I can run. Ok, it's 10am you ran this off this morning, you're fine, you're with the baby and you're going to give it all the cuddling and kisses and forget about everything. Crap, she's asleep now.  Well, maybe just mess around on facebook.  Is her mom coming home soon?  Maybe you could get lost in your thoughts and just cry a little bit before she gets back.  I wonder what he's up to right now.  Is he thinking about me?  Is he thinking about how much he hates me? Is he hoping he never hears from me again?  I checked his Twitter last week, I can't check it again until I get really desperate.  I bet one of these days he'll block me on Twitter just like he blocked me on everything else.  I don't think I'll be able to move that day.  Ok, here we go, search his name in the search bar, and the panic will settle in as we wait to see if he blocked me.  Prepare for an incredible amount of tears.  This is literally the only way we have left to connect to each other.  Everything else on the planet including skype is blocked.  Ok, he's still following me on Twitter.  Maybe he silently keeps track of what I'm up to.  Maybe he misses me too.  No, if he missed me he'd talk to me.  No maybe that's not true, maybe he's just still hurting but he's more angry than he is hurting.  Should I be angry too?  I think I'm still 70/30 sad to angry ratio.  Alright, well he hasn't been up to much but this joke was funny, I wish I could favorite it.
Ok, time to drive back to the Valley.  There's a new episode of This American Life on Stitcher.  I can't listen to his podcast because I would just cry the entire time, but maybe if I listen to this instead of High Pathetically, because he listens to it we'll be connected somehow.  Maybe if he calls me ever again I can talk to him about this awesome thing that they're discussing this week.  Ugh I wish I could talk to him about Serial.  It was so effing good.

Alright, second job of the day is almost over.  I can go home, I can drink some wine, watch Netflix, and then have a good cry if I want to, and  no one will know. Maybe I'll write in my journal.  Maybe I'll pray about some stuff.  

Maybe I'll go on Tinder and see if someone else would give me some attention.  Ugh, I'm just gonna go on another Tinder date and cry the whole way home again like I always do.  I like flirting, but who gives a shit?  It's not him.  That last guy I couldn't stop thinking about what Will would think about this guy.  Would he judge him?  He'd think he was really annoying.  I think this guy is really annoying.  We would both laugh at about how annoying this guy is. I should just delete Tinder, it's a waste of time.  I don't even want to have sex anymore. Everything feels like a chore. 

 God I'm glad I live alone so no one can see how pathetic I am. Drinking wine from the bottle and crying to my dog like some psycho. I should just marry my career and become celibate. How did I let this happen? Why wouldn't he just come with me? I wish he'd come visit. He'd probably hate it in LA anyway.  If I heard a knock on the door right now and it was him, I think I'd burst into tears. We could go visit the best open mics and work our shitty jobs while I cooked us dinner and we snuggled with our dogs at night and talked about how someday when we're rich we'll have an extra room for an office and a finished basement. Then I'll start to get jobs on TV and he'll work the road and we'll trust each other and be happy in having puppies instead of children, and eat the best kinds of cheese at 1 in the morning in our underwear and talk about the universe. We'll get married in the middle of the woods and we'll go to Ireland and explore the world together.  

This is all contingent if he'll ever even speak to me again. God, I'm a fucking psychopath.  How pathetic am I?  Maybe I should just start pretending he's dead.  It'll be easier than remembering the part about how he just didn't want me anymore.  This is all my fault. I was so fucking selfish.  About everything. A whiny, selfish brat. Sure he had his problems too.  I wish we could just call it off.  ToMAYtoe, toMAHto, etc. Haven't we hurt each other pretty equally at this point?  He probably doesn't even love me anymore.  I guess that's my fault too. I was awful to deal with. But I'm different now.  I know I'm different.  I'm on my own and I've realized a lot about myself and other people.  I'm more patient and understanding and less argumentative.  I could be better. But there's no way he'd trust me again. Besides, he's dead, what the hell am I trying to prove?

...Meanwhile on repeat is Bon Iver "Skinny Love" and I cry myself to sleep while I think of new scenes for my script, and wonder if you'll ever speak to me again.

Come on skinny love just last the year
Pour a little salt, we were never here
My, my, my, my, my, my, my, my
Staring at the sink of blood and crushed veneer

Tell my love to wreck it all
Cut out all the ropes and let me fall
My, my, my, my, my, my, my, my
Right in this moment this order's tall

And I told you to be patient
And I told you to be fine
And I told you to be balanced
And I told you to be kind

In the morning I'll be with you
But it will be a different kind
I'll be holding all the tickets
And you'll be owning all the fines

Saturday, March 21, 2015

"Wish I could be just a little less dramatic, like a Kennedy, when Camelot went down in flames." - Miranda Lambert

So this is me. 4 months later.  There are two extremes to how I feel at any given moment.  One moment it's like Boston was years ago, this crazy other life that I had in a completely different movie with different characters.  The next moment it was as if I were just there... well ok I was just there.  I flew home last week to shoot an indie feature and was horribly surprised by the ugly truth that I cannot possibly move back if I ever want to regain my sanity from my breakup.

I gave him up for Lent.  It wasn't hard, considering he won't return my emails anymore and probably blocked my number.  But then it got harder, because I was trying not to think about him at all and then of course my trip home was... well, it was too soon maybe.  I was hopeful I'd bump into him casually at an open mic, but I was busy and I didn't think stalking was something I'd be too proud of.

He hasn't spoken to me since my birthday.  Even after his promises that I would get an email or a phone call every few weeks and we'd try to rebuild or regain some sense of ourselves, giving me hope that we could someday get back together. I was thinking it was the only thing I wanted in the entire world, that I would pack up all of my things in my car and drive home with my dog and start over our lives together, mending the hurt back to love again.

I remember that's exactly what I was thinking of doing when I totaled my car.  I thought, "I know, I'll pack up all of my belongings, quit my job, and drive all the way back through Arizona, Texas, Alabama, Maryland, Virginia, and avoid the snow to get home.  I'll prove how serious I was about working things out and take the road trip all by myself across America to clear my head.  I'll do it, I'll -- WOAH that car almost hit me -- "


I froze, shaking all over, my puppy in the backseat crying because he was scared and stuck in his crate.  The diaper cake I had made for my friend's baby shower was somehow still in tact on the seat of the car. I had avoided hitting the black SUV next to me as they had tried to cut me off and sped away, but rearended the mini cooper instead.  I couldn't even speak when I got out of the car.  Somehow I managed to call AAA. The woman on the other end of the line was very concerned, "Oh no, are you alright?! Is there anyone you need me to call to come get you?" 

The worst pain I've ever felt was knowing that even though I had just totaled my car, perhaps could have died if I had been going any faster, my boyfriend wasn't going to be there for me anymore, because he didn't want to be.

He didn't want to call and make sure I was ok. He didn't want to be my person anymore.  He wasn't my best friend anymore. It's still very hard to believe that someone just doesn't love you anymore.  Or if they do, they don't want to.  It's quite tragic, actually.

One of my girlfriends just got a job in NY and her boyfriend, without even thinking about it, put in for a switch at work and is going with her.  I asked him about it and he said, "Are you kidding?  Do you know my girlfriend?  She's amazing.  I'd have to be an idiot not to see that.  Of course I would go with her, no question about it!"  I almost burst into tears.  Why didn't that happen with us? My mouth tasted bitter.

When I think of the story I told about how I murdered our relationship, I often still think of my day-to-day feelings as my having to mourn a death.  There are parts of me that are still in denial.  Like when someone dies and you go to call them, or you think you can't wait to tell them something funny, and then the tears well up again because they're not there. He might as well be dead considering the dead silence I get and being blocked on practically every social media outlet.  Maybe he wishes I were dead. ... Ok, little extreme...

I was just in Boston and every place I went reminded me of him.  Riding in the car especially, I used to be his passenger all the time.  It was worse because it was right before St. Patrick's Day, a day that had become the holiday we spent together, just the two of us, three years in a row up in Stowe, VT.  Last year we had talked about getting married there, back when we were arguably the most in love we had ever been.  Then he tried to teach me how to ski, and that was the beginning of the end.  I got accepted to my program the day that we got back, and the paranoia that he would leave me had sat in the back of my skull ever since. All of that anxiety, not that it's an excuse, but it built up to my sabotaging the relationship later on.

Yes, I still blame myself for pretty much everything. Maybe it's just easier to think it was my fault instead of admitting we weren't right for each other.  Or maybe I'm right and I'm a horrible person who deserves all of the guilt.  How else could I explain why he gave up?

Whenever I'm having too much fun, suddenly a dark shadow comes up behind me, and it's the zombie, that Frankenstein's monster that I tried to sew back together after bludgeoning him to death 5 months ago.  Jesus, has it really been 5 months?  How awful to think of it in terms of time. I tried way too hard, I was desperate and crazy and every part of me acted like an insane child, and my ex who tried to be there for the sewing ceremony up and left, ran screaming, wanting nothing to do with bringing the relationship back to life.  By then it was too late for me.  I was stuck with my choices.

I basically carry this zombie around on a leash everywhere with me, trying to stop him from eating all of my good times, good friends, potential flirtations.  But the leash gets pulled and I can't control him. He's too strong for me.  He eats away at everything, and turns it into a pile of death and sadness. Then he looks at me and smiles, the guttoral sounds coming from his throat and broken teeth, "I'm YOUR responsibility, you know. You made me. Now deal with me."

I don't have a choice, he just comes with me wherever I go.  He only has half of a heart, and half of a brain, kind of like how I feel most of the time.  Like half of myself.  Eventually, maybe years from now he'll die off completely.  But right now he's just searching for the halves he's missing. I think my ex boyfriend had a party when I got on a plane back to LA, and burned the halves he kept to ensure the final death.

Ashes to ashes.


Dead silence.

I think I'm a black hole.