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I guess there's a theme to this week. It's a theme I'm already aware of, but that's particularly highlighted by recent goings-on.

For instance, I'd been having some fairly rough motivation/mental health times this last few months. Got back into yoga, have set myself a 30 days/30 yoga classes goal, may add some running back into that, and my body is doing much better, as is my motivation to do, well, anything except the terrible arbitrary class at school. This is the one with no marking rubric, no feedback on what is supposed to be in the final product, and no grounding in the real world. I remember, now, that when my mental health gets back into normal levels, it rejects things that are bad for me: just pushes them out of my life so I can get back to doing proper life things. And school is bad for me, at least this course is. Means I need to put a lid on wellness enough to be externally motivated by school (ugh) but keep myself well enough to make it through (just a few more months).

The internal/external sufficiency is coming up in relationship stuff too. With Josh we're pretty hands-off about each other's stuff: help if we're able, but the default isn't leaning on each other. The newer relationship is a little different than that, and it's been running in a weird pattern the last several weeks: we've had big chunks of time, then big chunks of apart. I'm having a lot of trouble switching between being comforted/buoyed by someone else being here, and being happy/comforted by my home and my self after stressful days. Everything seems to run fine if I alternate days, but not if I alternate longer multi-day stretches. Part of the issue is that I set a default as to who to talk to about interesting/important things (myself via LJ, home partner, friends network, whatever) and have trouble switching that back and forth quickly.

And, of course, my future is a very large dependency/independence question: dependent on the job, independent in a house of my own, etc. It's pretty scary to be talking to mortgage brokers and thinking about making big decisions like this on my own. I want people to talk to about it, but so many of the people I know have a very different experience than I do. How do you weigh intangibles against each other?

But, time for yoga shortly. There's lots to say but maybe not enough of a pattern to write it out yet.
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Today I'm thinking about how people end up in proximity to other people.

Work sorts folks according to aptitude, interest, class and luck. You end up with folks of somewhat similar backgrounds, most of the time, and a shared set of conditioning -- whether that's certain sets of university training, family tendencies, whatever. This isn't to say that people who work together are the same, but there tends to be similarity.

The internet sorts people according to interests: polyamory, Star Wars, women's football, local food.

School sorts people by age, pretty much.

In cities folks are often heavily sorted. At least in Vancouver, the way people deal with having so many people everywhere all the time is to ignore large portions of them, to exclude them from the probable-friends realm. Then we build other structures to make probable friends in a more orderly, sorted way: online dating websites, cooking classes, walking groups, photography clubs. And again we end up sorted by interest or hobbies.

So it was my expectation that, in a small town, there would be a lot less sorting and you'd need to get to know people who weren't in the kinds of categories that work and school and interest-groups sorted you into. With fewer people, you'd end up knowing more people by physical proximity.

It hadn't occurred to me that physical proximity often came about because of certain sets of interests, aptitudes... and personality traits.

So here I am in a small town, and I've met an upper class Mexican woman who's ultra social and friendly, and I connect with her really well despite the fact that we share few interests or age categories or whatever. I wouldn't have met her back home. One of her skills seems to be the ability to connect well to almost everyone, which I find pretty great. I'm curious about how she would make friends in the city, just because she knows *everyone* here (and also apparently everyone who has ever lived here).

And I've also met an eighty-something woman (who I will be living with) who is from one of the founding families of the town, who brews and quilts and gardens and sands and paints her deck and kayaks and just separated from her husband of many years because she felt he was getting too dependent on her. She has a greenhouse with tomatoes and cucumbers. She has apple trees and a raspberry patch. She is, honestly, like a little window into the life I always hope/expected to have at that age.

So that's two strong awesome women I've met in the first week. I do not have to struggle or work hard to make friends. I do not have to force myself to meet people where they're at in order to broaden my mind, nor do I have to limit myself to make people comfortable (although the poly cat isn't out of the bag yet).

I'm not sure where I'm going with this. I had a similar experience when I went to volunteer at the botanical garden looking for a redheaded gardener boy to date and received a bunch of amazing surrogate grandmothers instead. I guess I'm surprised to meet awesome women outside my age bracket. I guess I'm surprised awesome, fully realized humans exist where I had previously set a tidy stereotype box.

I guess I enjoy people, and respond well to people, in ways outside the sorting boxes I'm used to using to find friends.

Oh, and I guess I like people again? It's been months, at mimimum, since I could say anything like that.

This summer is a good choice for me.
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So I'm definitely neck-deep in school right now, and I'm remembering which specific issues I have that clash with the university model.

Pretty much, when I set my goals as "getting approval from distant and arbitrary authority figures" I have trouble with my life. School, especially UBC, is 100% under that category, especially when I'm trying for scholarships or particular grades.

My parents were extremely arbitrary and pretty distant authority figures: mom because of depression and other needier kids, dad because of his underlying issue of whateverthefuck. It's pretty easy for me to be triggered into the passive, desperate obedience required of a dependent in that situation since the behaviour was gauged so deeply into my head for so many years.

I dealt with this in high school by getting good grades, accepting the grades-as-approval-structure and excelling in it.

I dealt with it at BCIT by, eventually, getting to know my teachers, being friends with them and thus getting away from the idea of them as authority figures, and also by learning their criteria and styles so they weren't really so arbitrary. I developed a group of friends at BCIT who were all going through the same work as I was. Those friendships affirmed that we were all awesome people aside from marks. I had ultra supportive partners who loved me. Basically, I had other sets of external validation.

Over the years, my source of validation has been shifting from external to internal. This had partly occurred when I was at BCIT, but it has definitely become stronger since then. (As part of becoming acceptable to academia I'm training myself out of the trades talk I trained myself into: less concise but more 'correct'). So when I hit UBC this time I was almost entirely internally-validated. I had a great set of checks and balances to deal with moods, hormones, and other events. A lot of those were actually developed through this journal.

Part of being at UBC is submitting yourself for approval over and over. Yes, I know, it's submitting your *stuff* for approval, but-- at this level, in classes of over a hundred people, where everything is marked by TAs, pretty much a number and a sentence is what you get. So it's pretty hard to frame as submitting my stuff for feedback; to get feedback I need to make an appointment with the teacher by email, go in, bring the thing in that they haven't seen before, and we talk. That's feedback. The other is arbitrary (poorly-defined beforehand, not enough assignments to get a feel for it) approval on my work in an institutionally-enforced absolute sort of sense. By this I mean it's not a matter of taste, it's a matter of me having done it /wrong/.

So I'd kind of... sloughed off a lot of my external approval mechanisms, in favour of internal stuff (no one else really thinks my brewing or organising my house or caring about local farming is SO COOL like I do). And now I'm submitting myself for approval by this arbitrary body, and I don't have counterbalances. I can't just pull my validation back inside, because I need to care enough to do the stuff, even when the class is poorly organised and the information is easy to look up when I need it and so not necessary to memorize or whatever. I *cannot* use my judgement in this, so I cannot trust my judgement.

So I'm doing really poorly. Compounding everything is the way I have no time or money to do things that self-validate, because I'm working enough to eat into basically all my free time but not enough to have extraneous funds (tradespeak: extra cash).

Making friends at school helps SO MUCH. They are also having trouble this time of year, it's hard, just being assured that it IS hard and often arbitrary helps. But... I don't really have time to make friends, with work.

Talking to profs about assignments helps SO MUCH but. It got me through the assignment angst, but it can't get me through not knowing what my midterms tomorrow are going to be like, how they're going to be marked. 'A university-type answer' doesn't really tell me what's up with marking (I think tradespeak is more expressive there).

Brewing helps SO MUCH but. Money. I swear I need a patreon or a friends group at school that will pay me for beer.

Writing this, figuring out the issue, helps but. It's started me reorienting my validation to an internal source, and I know I'll pass things, so it drains my ability to shoot higher (I need to hit certain grade targets for both co-op and scholarships, and those are fiddlier than 'I know I'll pass things').

Long-term goal is to get student loans so I have time to have friends and do cool stuff. In the meantime, O suppose I can only be mindful of seeking validation in good places. When my friends are dicks about being critical of a thing, I tend to feel bad in myself because I place myself on the receiving end of it even if I'm not normally part of that thing.

I probably need to seek out friends who are especially kind, empathetic generally, and not given to vitriol. This will most certainly help me both short and long term.

Funny to think how things have changed. Fifteen years ago I was so into jerks.

It's also interesting to think about me, in school fifteen years ago, with all these things happening to me without my knowledge of what was happening in my head. I guess that's the growth of self-knowledge.

Hm.
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I've been doing a crazy amount of learning lately, and I've been surging forward full speed on a bunch of decisions. Let's see if I can get some of it down.

Sunshine + exercise + food == happy Greenie. This is no news to me or anyone. However, I'd been depending on work for the exercise and sunlight, and work right now is a source of stress and not a source of any of those other things. I had been (have been) having a rough winter; I've got a lot of changes going on, much of the outcomes outside my experience or control, and I can't afford to let this stuff slide. So, I've let my competitive instinct kick in and started doing hot yoga like Dave, just... more often. Every single day I do it I feel better for hours afterwards. I am keeping an eye on overtraining issues and not doing absolutely every single say, but it's good so far. It levels my head so well and is conveniently close. I may keep this up even after I start bike commuting.

Sunshine was really forthcoming this fall until sometime in December, which is when I started to nosedive. Exercise can compensate to some degree for light, especially since I'm being kept too busy at work to get out into the light during the week. Ugh.

I'm getting real good at eating enough, and at asking for help when I'm having trouble. It helps that my neighbour is always up for eating together and I can use her presence to put myself into a better place for food. This all gets difficult when I'm financially stressed, though the meat box and farm stuff really helps.

Sex is a problem in a bunch of different ways. I thought I had this figured out; I thought that by taking back my bodily autonomy so I didn't have to ask folks permission before making choices around sex I would fix everything. Instead I only began a learning curve totally different from the one I've been on most of my life. How do I decide who to have sex with and when? How do I deal with humans when I decide to have or not to have sex with them in general? Per instance? How do I deal with the fact that in people's eyes when I don't have a primary partner I am always on some level available no matter how much I protest to the contrary? How do I let people know the ways in which I am more available than suspected, and how less? How do I deal with not having enough sex, or with feeling subtle coercion around sex? How do I deal with sex that I want beforehand but don't want in the moment? How do I calibrate desire vs complexity and work? How much do I like emotions involved in sex and what kind of sex do I like, anyhow?

I imagine you folks who weren't in serious relationships most of your life are laughing at me about now.

I'm learning that I probably want to have sex with fewer people less often than I thought I did, because the complexities that come with it are just not worth it. I'm also learning how sexual compatibility and emotional intimacy work together for me, and how they don't always go together regardless of how much I might want them to. I think I'm learning that when something works, I should let it work, and when I need to push and work hard on something, I should probably drop the sexual aspect of it.

I don't know that my original interpretation of solo poly will end up being what I choose, after all. Especially with the time and energy I'm putting elsewhere, it may just not be worth it.

Romantic relationships aren't enough. In fact, even non-romantic relationships aren't enough. I've made huge strides lately in learning to have friends, people with whom I'm close in non-romantic, non-partnery long-term and very intimate ways. That enriches my life immensely. I've been treating my home, careful selection and upkeep of my house, with as much attention as I have in the past given major relationships. I really enjoy the result. I have decided to add my career to the mix of important stuff to give that much time and attention to.

This has resulted in my making some information-gathering dates with folks at my old school, formulating a career path, and now doing some more information-gathering from folks in the field I want to head into and (this is scary) applying to, not a technical college, but a formal huge sprawling university-temple of academia. I'm formulating a support team (emotional, physical, logistical, motivational) which I can do really well based on my previous experience with working through my diploma. I actually feel pretty confident about this path of mine, though it's me against huge and arbitrary machines within machines, which is never easy for me to deal with.

I may not be in Vancouver forever. I may stay in the Valley forever or I may not, but a million tiny roots are shaking themselves and working their way loose. I had never thought to leave, before, but in a couple of years I will be able to if I so choose.
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Another Poem About The Heart

When the floor drops out, as it has now,
you cannot hear the squirrel on the wire
outside your window, the wheels spinning
on the road below. You want only pity
and are presented with the unbelievable
effrontery of a world that moves on.
But wait: this is not the person you are.
You're the kind of person who
sits in dark theaters crying at the collarbones
that curve across the dancers' chests,
at the proof of a perfection they represent;
a person who goes out walking in a four-day drizzle,
sees a pot of geraniums and is seized, overcome
by how they can bring so much (what else
can you call it?) joy. You love the world,
are sure, at least, that you have. But be truthful:
you only love freely things that have nothing
to do with you. You're like a matchstick house:
intricately constructed but flimsy and hollow inside.
You're a house in love with the trees beside you -
able to look at them all day, aware of how faithful they are -
but unable to forgive that they'd lie down
leaving you exposed and alone in a large enough storm.

Jenn Habel

Hello again.

I'm in a life. It's my life, more-or-less, and almost completely different than any you've been aware of.

This is the life I lived when I was sixteen, seventeen, eighteen: a life where I'm a world unto myself, where I speak to almost no-one, where I do a series of things required of me. School and work require the most, people almost nothing.

Once again when I write here the worlds echo inside my own quiet mind with no thought of an audience; I've forgotten what an audience might be like.

I spend a lot of time with Blake, all the shared eating-sleeping-reading time in which time slides by with few major features to mark its passing.

Sometimes I miss people. It happens less often now; generally only for the few days right after some sort of social contact with my old friends, but that happens so seldom these days.

I don't talk to my classmates much. I ordered african violet leaves instead of buying pants without holes for the winter because I wanted to nurture something green and alive.

Some days I forget how to love, or forget to know whether I know how.

It's going to be a dark winter. I'm in the womb again, still: I'll live here awhile. Whatever I'm to be born into this time around, it's far on the horizon yet.

Even typing just these words stirs up a little bit of dust. The love is in there somewhere.

I am, by the way, just finished bleeding and the winter still looks dark. That means something.
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I finish these weeks pretty worn out. At the end of every Friday class I have this touch of panic, and an emotional drop-- I don't want to go back to the real world for the weekend, and there it waits for me. I've been in a world without physical touch, without a second's spare time, since Monday night and then everything gets dumped on its head. I'll have a couple of hours of homework, maybe a little more; I'll have likely a date with Michael that involves snuggling, some Burn Notice time planned with Andrew, and a bunch of homey type stuff with Angus. I'm not great at bridging that gap, and the transitions are a little rough. Luckily it seems to be more or less my term pattern. When changes like that are embedded in routine it becomes easier for me to deal with them: the thing has happened before a million times and no one died, so why should I worry now? Last night it only bothered me for a couple of hours.

Oh, look at this. Pretty snazzy, mm? That's me.

Soon the school portion will end Saturday early evening and begun Monday morning. There won't be much of a transition at all because there won't be much to transition to. Those will be very full six-day weeks, plus homework and likely work on the Sunday too. Honestly I can't wait for longer days that will allow me to work later; one ten or twelve hour day per weekend would make a big difference both to how much I need to cram into a week and also to my paycheque.

Work still loves me. I still have this weird sense of inadequacy there, like at some point they'll find me out and stop liking me. The last guy or three they had in my position were pretty awful, so since I've been working there the guys' stress levels have gone way down, apparently. I get all the work that needs to be done, always, no matter what-- sometimes I flex it, sometimes i take a longer lunch one day and skip lunch the next, sometimes things bleed over from one day to the next, some days I'm very thorough and some days I squeak through pretty quickly. Those things make me feel guilty, I guess, but there's both tacit and overt approval from my bosses, and I guess as long as everything gets done and they don't ever need to worry about it that's what I'm paid for. There's always more work to do to make things perfect than I have done, though. I would like everything to always be perfect.

I have my grow lights up in my house! I know I've said that before, but my mahoganies, which were languishing, are now thriving. I need to get decent pots for them, in fact. There's so much gardening I need/want to do. I guess the thing about grow lights in my house is, I've wanted them since I was 8 or so, and at 8 they were way beyond my allowance money. Since then I've been unstable, haven't had space-- but now here I am, with them over my computer. I could start tomatoes by my computer! I need to look up when Seedy Saturday is.

Angus has a fairly solid commitment for a barback-type job weekend evenings again, which means means wondrous things. For one, though he always had rent, I was carrying or worrying about a lot of our food budget and that can back off somewhat and let me resume tuition saving (I hope). For another, it means that even if I spend one night a week with Michael, I'll have an evening to myself in my home. This is... pretty exciting, to be honest. I'm also pretty damn impressed with the way Angus went about it: I'd been offering to help him with his resume, but was busy the day he started, so I gave him the communications book from school, which has a resume section, and told him to see how far he could go. He turned out a pretty snazzy product that fits the far thing well, and I didn't have to do anything. So, yay on that front.

Likewise paid and unpaid work is trickling in for Michael, things he loves doing, not quite enough to make a living on but closer; the total drought of money is clearing up some. I'm so glad. He's happier, and there's no way to complain about that.

For that matter, even Graydon is happier than he used to be; he moved, he was a zombie for, well, a long time, and now his shell's cracking open in my presence. Some people have moved further away from me in the last several weeks, but it seems people are also moving closer, and-- I can accept that. I'm not kicking against it.

Last night I watched Kingdom of Heaven and it's given me a serious yearning to rerererererereread the Elenium and Tamuli series by David Eddings. I might do that; I haven't been reading at all lately. There's also a book called Where the Wild Asparagus Grows or something like that which should be on my list. It would be nice to actually read again. It's escapist as all hell for me, almost to pathological levels, but it's calming.

The ring I have worn since Spring Mysteries last year, that reminded me to be at peace with change in all its facets, is starting to feel uncomfortable on my finger. It's not that my fingers are larger or smaller; it's just a presence that makes itself known where for so long I didn't think about it. Early Bird registration for the festival is up. It'll be interesting to see what happens this year.

Mmm. Nice to be conversational on here again. Talk to you soon.
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I'm not with all you new years' people as much as all that. For me the Chinese New Year feels more like spring; it's when the winter's back breaks, when I begin to sense something stirring deep in there. Still, it's reflection time right now and as everyone is turning inwards I turn inwards too.

I also don't do resolutions; if something needs doing I'm too impatient to wait, and if it doesn't need doing, well, what's the point? Having said that, family dinner has started again, which fills basically a spiritual void I was holding. I am remembering to spend time with many different friends and that makes my life noticeably, measurably better-- both for everyone else, I think, and for myself. I need to keep my home clean enough to have company over without notice. Finally, I need to remember to be nice to my body both in terms of food and exercise, and if necessary set up structures that enforce that (paid yoga classes on campus, buddies for exercise, a skipping rope close to hand at home for the five-minute brain-breaks during homework).

Having been through the first semester of school, I think I can maintain all these things at better levels than I did before, since I have formed enough school-type habits and created enough school-type efficiencies to leave my attention free to manage new habit creation.

So that's where I'm at right now.

Oh, also I fucking love cooking. I mean, I love cooking -for- people, a la family dinner, but I also just really enjoy the cooking process. I'd forgotten that. I bought myself this smoked turkey and I'm making soup stock with the carcass and it may be the best thing I've made within sensory memory. Seriously. Awesome.

Loved

Nov. 30th, 2010 11:26 pm
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...by so many people in so many different shapes of caring. My life is the brightest of kaleidoscopes. And to think it was a difficult afternoon!

Posted via LiveJournal app for iPhone.

Nested.

Nov. 20th, 2010 08:50 am
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I found this the other day. I wrote it when I was happy and feeling loved.

This morning I am happy and feeling loved.

It snowed last night; it was a snow-globe, a deep thick fall of big white chunks. Walking home in the night silence at 1am the snow would cover my sweater in a second so thick I couldn't see the patterns on it, just a white pile of snow when I looked down at myself. At one point a car turned into the street I was walking down and it must have been a hybrid because the white world retained its silence, the car creeping and I walking and the snow falling and falling and falling.

I didn't used to like snow, but it makes Angus so happy and excited that I can't help but think of him standing in the white smiling in through windows with the light spilling out into the night and now I get excited too-- like Christmas, I imagine. The Writer likes it too, and so really I haven's much choice.

I was talking, last night, about using trite metaphors in conversation-- especially metaphors with which you have no direct experience. I don't really get excited at Christmastime, or I don't get presents and I make family dinner so it's not really a thing, and it's silly to use something I don't know anything about to explain the snow-feeling which I'm familiar with.

I was feeling such a thirst for conversation recently and now the heavens have opened and granted me a wealth of it: I met a conversational partner online (thank goodness for skype), [livejournal.com profile] dark_sphere hauled me out to talk last night, the Writer was feeling especially talkative, and tonight I have even more conversational plans. Life is very sweet to me.

I've been catching up on calories too. I was out in the cold for hours yesterday, occasionally snowed on, with a peanut butter and jelly sandwich as breakfast and lunch. As a consequence when I got home I double-dinnered and it was good.

Now I'm curled up in the bedroom in a deeply-blanketted bed with a boy, waiting for cornbread to come out of the oven and waiting for 9am so [livejournal.com profile] chimera_fancies posts a second batch of shiny things and I can maybe get dibs on one. And... this is only the first day of the weekend. I have some super nice, super comfy plans.

The last two consecutive days I had off school and not out of town were Oct 16 and 17th. This is really nice.
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Excuse me for spewing love songs all over the internet, but this is what's playing in the background right now and it needs to be here. I'll cut it a bit for ya.



Well you've done done me and you bet I felt it
I tried to be chill but you're so hot that I melted
I fell right through the cracks
and now I'm trying to get back
Before the cool done run out
I'll be giving it my bestest
Nothing's going to stop me but divine intervention
I reckon its again my turn to win some or learn some
Read more... )
No I won't hesitate no more, no more
This cannot wait I'm sure
There's no need to complicate
Our time is short
This is our fate, I'm yours, I'm yours


Basically right now my life feels like dancing in warm rain. I am enjoying it so much, and even learning to relax a little bit about that. I have done cool things, spent more time than I believed imaginable with cool people new and old, learned so much interesting stuff, gathered and accepted so many opportunities, been presented with so many workable challenges... If I had ever been in the habit of being optimistic about the future I'd say my dreams are come true, but to be honest I'd never have thought to aim so high. And don't get me wrong, I am high right now, I'm riding very little sleep and a spring surge and hormones and the trailing edge of this chaos wave. Don't worry, I'm a pro. When it all goes over I'll try not to breathe too much water.

I want to tell you about all the highlights that have happened lately, but I need you to realise I haven't been sleeping. Normally this isn't possible for me. I self-destruct. Lately I haven't been able to settle, and even when I go to sleep at 4am I wake up at 6 and pop out of bed, so a lot has been happening.

One of those things was the Bridging the Gap Engineers Without Borders Conference which I went to on Saturday with CrazyChris. At the beginning of the day they gave us a sticky note, and they asked us to write on it what got us out of bed in the morning, and then during the course of the day stick it on the board. I wrote, "I live the world and I get to be a part of it!". Normally I'm not a fan of chirrupy engagement-building exercises (if I'm there, it's because I am engaged, I don't waste time and money on things I would only engage with because a man in a banana suit started a chant or something), but I was pretty solid on that one. Not only did I get to hear some amazing speakers say some incredible things-- no punches were pulled, there was little in the way of shock-rhetoric but also little sugar-coating --but I got to meet some cool people, get some great info, and spend some time with my birthday twin who's been mentally on vacation in the land of theatre and internet memes for the last couple of years. Chris and I were frothing at the mouth together, grabbing each other's legs, making muffled choking sounds, and otherwise engaging deeply with both each other and the content-- and I had missed that so much. He's the guy who started me down the urban part of my path, who's half-convinced me that big cities may be worthwhile and desireable enough that it's worth the administrative hell of keeping them around, who introduced me to ethical eating and also to basically all the people I'm friends with now, and who... well, he's just very special to me. I had missed him, and there he was, back with me for a whole day. I had missed eating with him. I had missed his high level of reaction. I had missed his engagement with the world around him-- so many people are so very ignorant or head-in-the-sand.

Also Hans Rosling compared Christopher Columbus to Hitler, showed a trade-deficit thingy of the world and commented, 'in the US, they always give the black man the crappy job', and otherwise blew my mind. Then there was the guy from Bangladesh, who was super hardcore. He gives us some figures: land area of Canada, land area of Bangladesh. Population of Canada, population of Bangladesh. Then he says: "30% of Bangladesh will be under water in 20 years." He talks about this for a bit, including things like climate refugees. At the end, during question period, some kid puts up his hand and says in effect: I don't want to accept refugees, that problem's pretty hards, so maybe in Canada we'll be doing enough of our part if we just buy new cellphones less often (note: the 'new cellphones less often' were his own worlds). Iqbal responds, and I swear I don't know how he did this, "Thank you for your question." Then he mentioned that his government was willing to do basically anything that would help, but was also focusing resources on poverty reduction and there was some question as to priorities there.

Oh, that does not do the conversation justice. Here's how it felt to me. Guy: we have little land and lots of people. You have lots of land. Soon our land will all be underwater. Kid: We could replace our cellphones less often in Canada, then we'd have done our part. Guy: Thank you for your question. My country will be underwater. The people actually need places to stand. We are willing to look at all assistance however. Chris and I: *stare in horror*

In addition to that, I've been reconnecting with other people. I looked up Bevan the other day and chatted with him for awhile. He's generally a little awkward, and I was pleasantly surprised that a lot of that had dissipated and we could just talk about cool stuff. I am also always thrilled when someone I haven't talked to in two years doesn't hold that against me.

Tillie too has been re-entering my life. There was an impact play workshop at her place (slapping, kicking, punching) to which I brought Angus, and afterwards she beat him up a little bit and I watched and it was all super shiny. We agree that family dinner will start again. It would not be family dinner without her.

I worked at the Pan overnight between a couple of those things (did I mention I have NOT been sleeping?) and remembered how cool my bosses are. It's comfy to talk casually with them during work, and that means so much. Also I got to be a plant ninja, which would be more fun if I was not half-dead with sleep dep but is always kinda cool.

What else has been happening? Cameos at social events, some settling in and coming to terms with the relationship stuff going on in my head including a very new and very shiny someone (his handwriting is so beautiful) and the surprising slam into familiarity of someone else, little bits of chatting with Angus and no fretting there. I notice that there is such a depth of love with my old friends, where the breadth might have been worn away with lack of contact the thing still feels so very powerfully anchoring-- while with new people the challenge of engaging and figuring them out is so very strong and stimulating. I may be coming to accept endings a tiny bit more, and not to let them angst the whole experience of everything ever in advance. Maybe. (see: song)

And on top of all of that the air today felt like soft blankets in a cradle-- not cold, very soft, very present, and it smelled so lovely.

What else could possibly go right? Well, Twitter is apparently a wonderful source for permaculture info-- as it should be, considering the distributed bottom-up nature of it. When I have a spare moment I poke around there and it's neat to see what's around. I've also found it to be a good outlet for my activist side. I guess the length and immediacy of it seems appropriate to comment on things that pass me by or that I notice in the gardening/food/ethics world where there's not time for an lj post or where a facebook status update feels... weird.

I've also custom-ordered a mask for the masquerade, and discovered and bought the proper skirt. My outfit will allow me to go barefoot if I like. Now I just need to bug andi_sunrider about the corset. This is fun. I adore costuming. Adore, adore, adore.

Did I mention that there's a permaculture community garden by my place? Of course I did. I mentioned the chestnut trees. There are also pecans or walnuts or something-- I'll need to actually stop and look for a proper ID on them. Did I mentioned I may have seen an apricot tree growing in a back alley today? How freakin' cool is that?

And now I'm looking forward to many things this upcoming while: sleeping a full night or three, sex, my natal mahoganies arriving, beating up a boy, reading more permaculture stuff while on the bus, spending a weekend cut off from media paganizing, peoplepeoplepeople of the very best sort, puzzling out more about my shiny thing, alcohol-ing the ass off the scale at that one account at work, deciding what to wear to the big hippie pagan festival, maybe being beaten up (face slapping ftw!), more time with my ratty babies, regular mealtimes, sleep, and did I mention sex and sleep? And people? And what about wearing my super comfy sweaters? And maybe even having time, or not having time, for more lj posts.

So much love. Be well. Thinking of you.

:D

(Woah lj is acting weird and sorta-double-posting this)

Time Use

Mar. 13th, 2010 10:26 am
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You know how I'm always saying I don't have time? Here are the things I'd want to include in any given four-week (28-day) stretch:

16 days of work
4 days and 4 - 8 evenings of Angus time
1 - 2 days or evenings of extracurricular relationship activities
3 - 6 days or evenings of friends
6 days or evenings of special events (rat show, spring mysteries, family dinner, movie night). This could overlap with friend stuff, eddimication stuff, Angus time, whatever
4 days minimum eddicatin' meself and doing things I find exciting
4 days cleaning rat cages and doing rattery stuff
4 days or 6 evenings doing Greenie stuff
2 - 3 days cooking (can overlap)
2 evenings chatting about rat breeding

Plus maybe 8 - 10 hours of housecleaning, maybe an hour a day rat snuggling with no agenda, an hour and a bit a day doing email/livejournalling/etc, dinner which thank god can be multitasked, packing lunches which I always ignore, gardening which would ideally take about 6 hours/day.

This comes to mind because I've been thinking of restarting family dinners once I'm back in the neighborhood. My thinking looked like this: I really enjoy this feeling of being able to spend a whole day with Angus, it's been forever. I have four days a week of work, that means I'd have time to spend one day a week with Angus, one day doing cooking and housecleaning for family dinner, and I'd have a day left over for friends or whatever. Oh wait, I am only working four days because the rats are a full day in my own mind, so a day with Angus, a day of cooking and cleaning, a day of rats, and work... that leaves no time for anything! In the ideal world I'd have a whole day a week to bum around with friends, I sure do love open-ended days like that. I always get antsy if I can't do plant stuff, though, and there are a ton of gardenworks workshops coming up I want to go to. Oh yeah! The rat show is coming up. That's going to eat a whole weekend and a lot of my enthusiasm for large crowds for the next little while. Likely will make me wanna skip a couple movie nights. So's spring mysteries. If I build a schedule around four days of work, one day of rat cage cleaning, I'm going to very regularly have no time to spend with Angus or friends... wait, does that sound familiar? Maybe if I pack family dinner and the rats on the same day (always a good idea so they're clean for people) I can at least get people in. But wait...

Jeeze, I guess listing my priorities is a first step. It'd be interesting to assign weights to these times-- because things get weighted by how often I've done them. Like if I just had a crazy cool garden workshop this week, I might forego some other kind of learning in favour of hanging out with a friend, or vice versa. So there's a natural weight where something is a higher priority if I'm deprived of it for awhile. There are a lot of things I start to get twitchy about after a week of being away from them, and after two weeks I kind of forget that they're options at all much I'm a much less happy and resilient person in general. Over February almost everything fell into that category, but over the summer friends tended to, and in the past eddimacation has. (I am really enjoying the ability to listen to lectures at work, currently going through a biology 101 and a book-on-tape of /Outliers/-- I am thinking if I get into BCIT (they finally acknowledged reciept of my application this week) I will tape lectures and re-listen during work time)

I wish I could think up a system where I didn't forget about important things.

Also where my calendar doesn't fill up so freaking fast. Seriously-- April is more-or-less toast, all the weekends are booked at least, I believe there are two weekends in June, one in July, and one in August already booked, and that's without figuring out anything in advance (like housewarming, ratterywarming, people's various parties though I have the masquerade accounted for...)

To think that I used to worry about having nothing to do if I wasn't in multiple relationships!
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So I went to the Blue Rodeo free show with Bob the other night-- it was my first night off, I had specifically taken it off work to be able to go with him. It was a free show, so we got there just after 4pm to be sure we got in, which we did with dispatch (the line was only a block or two long and moving quickly). We hung out and looked at some things, and there was a bit of a musical tour of Canada on stage (first some Bollywood stuff from here, then an indie singer from the Maritimes, then Chic Gamine from Montreal/Quebec (who are awesome btw), and finally Blue Rodeo). In between there were Olympic things on the big screens, including the skating gala (super cool) and the end of the Slovak/Finland bronze medal hockey game.

It was a lot of standing given that I had got off shift and home by about 10am, had two hours sleep, and by the time I got home had been standing about eighteen of the previous 24 hours. Still, it was worth it-- they're a fabulous live band, they looked like they were having fun, we were two rows from the front or so, and-- well, it's this way. Bob and I were together for a fair chunk of time-- more than two years. We lived together for awhile. Blue Rodeo has always been one of Bob's favourite bands but it was also our album. He got me into them, we played them a lot in our house.

And I care about Bob a whole lot. And- when I realised that things with Angus were going to completely flame up emotionally I stopped the relationship with Bob. I stopped it cold, none of the trailing off I've done with other people, because the feedback I've got from my exes is that they would generally rather things just stop, like, END, rather than go through a cyclic more-less-more thing as people come and go from my life. I really care about Bob, I respect him a whole lot, and I was privileged to be let inside his emotional shell. I wanted to do the right thing for him-- and this was the time when everyone was saying that Angus was a dickhead for fucking me and spending time with me without being able to commit to a full-on relationship. I didn't want to be a dickhead. I didn't want to hurt anyone, but I suspected it was coming one way or another and wanted to do the least damage.

It wasn't fair, because Bob had always been awesome to me. He took the poly thing in stride and the rats thing in stride and really was proud of who I was and how I did what I did. In an ideal world he would not be dumped or emotionally overshadowed by some unproven subby kid with dimples and a whole lot of emotional ambivalence.

He was really upset with Angus for a couple of years after that, understandably, but he's been making a point to reverse that lately. I've been hanging out with him sometimes too, much easier for me with the Angus animosity resolved, and I always really enjoy spending time with him.

So here we are standing in this crowd (about nine thousand people?) and it's raining and-- hah --the band is playing our songs. And Bob is just being Bob, he's geeking out about the music setup and enjoying the music in a quiet sort of way, and we put our arms around each other for one song and not after that, and I don't even know what else to day about that. I didn't cry then because it wouldn't have been fair but I am now.

Cause, you know, Angus is my person but that's a good man there and I care for him a lot. And it's been a long time since we were close.

There are a lot of blessings in my life, but the people are absolutely the greatest of these. I have friends who-- you know, over time we wear on each other softly, we build up a share of commonalities, we get to witness the completely beautiful arc of each others lives. I have so much love both there and in my family.

Purring By

Jan. 28th, 2010 09:52 pm
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Last night I hung out with Tillie some. It was really, really nice to spend time with someone who shared some of that time of my life. Tillie was the friend I moved in with when my very first relationship, an 8-year live-in one, had tanked. We're in different life spaces now, but not so different that we can't speak to one another meaningfully. We made wonderful soup last night, and drank tea, and it was low key.

Today I spent some time with my mom- we went out to Burnaby Lake by the bird sanctuary, I practiced driving and then we went for a run. Halfway through the run my lower leg started hurting quite badly right under my calf muscle. I ran/walked on it regardless (it didn't feel quite like damage) till we were back at the car, sat down, and noticed the position my leg wanted to take-- it was clutching cramp. Ha.

Tonight I'm spending some time with Angus. It's been a busy couple of days and we need some chill time together.

I've been swimming in a lovely sea of friends lately. I've realised that my breeding partner Lizzy is one of my better friends-- I think that because there is such an age difference I've been blind to that, thinking of her as a 'work partner', but there you have it. I guess I have this preconceived notion of what a friendship should look like that was created in my isolated high school where I didn't have access to many different age groups.

I've been making efforts to hang out with new people, which has been and I expect will continue to be rewarding. I've been feeling cared for and cherished by people I know well.

I don't know what I will do when I go back to work, especially when I add school. With no commute things would certainly be better, I would be less tired at the end of the day.

Hm.

I also, in the process of regaining my hobbies, seem to have regained my love of seduction. Keeping it under wraps for the moment, but... sigh. I don't know if I want to start on that set of consequences again.

Ack

Jan. 9th, 2010 10:49 pm
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So so so tired.

Oh wait. No sleep. Duh.

Particularly aware of the world going to hell in a handbasket today. I should watch the willie smits talk on ted again.

Then run away and join him.

There are just so many bad things happening to the world that no one knows about, and that so few people care about or understand. Is this what expertise is supposed to be? In my mind tonight is: peat mining, mountaintop mining, percentage of biomass in predators in ocean and by extension (?) land environments, nature 'preserves' vs 'managed' environments, consumerism trumping food security and the whole food-as-%-of-total-expenditure change over time, zero-mile-diet as a trend, complete and total devastation of local and sustainable agricultural knowledge in all areas of the entire world, difficulty of managing viable ecologies in times of scarcity and the whole long-vs-short term sustainability issue, earthbound fucking organics, dilettantes, SLACKTIVISM, the replacement of a connection to nature with pictures of kittens on the internet, people who won't eat food that has been in the dirt vs people studying insects as a viable protein source in a highly efficient permaculture system, SLACKTIVISM, how when I'm upset about anything else Angus can hold me when I cry and tell me it's okay but about this topic I don't believe him, the exclusion of disposable consumer electronics from buy-local save-the-environment mentalities, subsidies and agricultural-cultural warfare, deliberate disinformation, pig farmers, mcdonalds potato fields, ethnic divides limiting urban permacultural knowledge transmission, community gardens, rhododendrons, culture of scarcity in the midst of plenty, the dopamine boost from 50% returns vs 100% returns...

Oh my god. Let's try some good things. That list got very long very fast, and finding explanatory links was quickly discouraging. I can think about good things, right?

Hands in the soil. Warm. February spring smell when the light is yellow. Leaves on the ground under the trees. Bamboo through sidewalks. Neighbors in tall buildings. Farmer's markets. Curly carrots in stores in England. People with small stashes of knowledge. My mom's first garden. Mimi's first potted plant. The Richmond fruit tree project. Kent Mullinix quoting Wendell Berry. Cherry petals. Sedum deserts instead of concrete. Increasing infrastructure. Vaccinium ovatum on the living wall outside whole foods. A land that is so generous it speaks to Gavin even though he has no training. Our human ability to intuit environmental health. The smell of rain on concrete. Cottonwood trees. Winlaw. Farmschool. People who want to be pig farmers. Courage to use the word farmer. Preserved knowledge. John Seymour's books. John Seymour. Wendell Berry. Gregoire. People who live this way. An accepting vacuum of knowledge where it is least expected.

Here is the Mad Farmer Liberation Front by Berry, and I will sleep:

Love the quick profit, the annual raise,
vacation with pay. Want more
of everything ready-made. Be afraid
to know your neighbors and to die.
And you will have a window in your head.
Not even your future will be a mystery
any more. Your mind will be punched in a card
and shut away in a little drawer.
When they want you to buy something
they will call you. When they want you
to die for profit they will let you know.

So, friends, every day do something
that won't compute. Love the Lord.
Love the world. Work for nothing.
Take all that you have and be poor.
Love someone who does not deserve it.
Read more... )

PS Slacktivism is getting more offensive every day.
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I went out last night to Gavin's going away party. It was a gesture; I really like Gavin, don't really know how to make that meaningful, so I thought I'd show up so he knew I was thinking about him and was glad he was coming back. I had basically given up on conversation; I believed that at this point all my friends were capable of talking about was sports, internet memes, and... was there anything else on that list?

I ended up on a discussion of peak oil, post peak oil bioagricultural and social scenarios, soft vs hard apocolypse, satanism, paganism, and how to self-identify in a religion, reindeer herding, ornamental vs edible landscaping in a modern-day setting, etc. Lots of people contributed. One particular friend is doing a project called
greenstorm: (Default)
Read more... )

Mmm. Morning before a non-work day. Time for writing. It'll be a tight month but I'm getting my life back.

Have I mentioned I'm moving again? My roommates decided the rats weren't for them. I'll be moving in with Angus. I am very much looking forward to that. It's funny, I had about a two-second thought: man, housing would be easier if I wasn't essentially supporting a dependent (food + room) in the form of the rats. The thought left as soon as it came. I'm happy to be doing it, and I'd miss them a whole lot. Seems I'm still deeply committed to this negative-income hobby of mine. :) I do wonder if getting a business license would allow me to write off food & bedding & cage purchases, or if that only works against the income of the business in question. It's something to think about.

So we're looking for a two bedroom, big one-bedroom-plus-den, or anything bigger. There are a bunch of options- a yard or balcony is pretty mandatory though there's one two-bedroom by Juggler's place where I bet I could just trade him yardwork for a veggie patch. We're looking both in the Yaletown-box-with-gym-in-the-building category and in the east-van-on-bike-routes-with-yard category, so it'll be pretty interesting to see what shakes out. You'd think it would be an awful time to be moving but people do seem to be looking, not just for Olympics short-terms stays but for actual tenants. Who knew? If you know of a place, let us know. We're looking between 1000 - 1500/month, but there may be some flex there for the right place.

I am so looking forward to buying someday.

There seems to be a lot of mental illness going around these days. This sounds weird to say, and I'm not sure how to approach the thing in my head. In the last month my brother and a friend of mine have been having issues, my co-worker is always kind of iffy, and there are a couple more people in the wings that are going that way. I mean, you know what to do if someone is physically sick, but even having been through bad depression myself doesn't help me know what to do when someone's in that, or in something else. I'm so very glad Angus is through his recent bit. His body is still hitting him hard physically, but he's a tough cookie. Also I love him like crazy, have I mentioned that lately?

My mom is sick with, likely, h1n1 right now. I need to make her some soup today-- she's really terrible with self-care. Come to think of it, I should offer her my bedroom to stay in. I'm not using it at the moment. Don't want to infect roommates though. Hm.

Chucken-garlic-ginger-orange peel congee, I think.

Discovered a really lovely all-you-can-eat sushi restaurant three blocks away from Angus' place. Tamaya, I think it's called, on Seymour by Robson. It's perfect staggering distance from here, their selection is fantastic, their prep and cooking is good, and they both offer wild salmon for an additional charge and have enough other options that it's not missed. Also, raw oysters are part of the all-you-can-eat menu, and their miso is properly bonito'd. I think I have replaced Tanpopo as long as they can remain consistent for a couple of visits.
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I seem to have broken my tailbone, deviated it, or badly bruised one side of it. At least, I am one of the parties responsible for the event, and it's my tailbone. Bad tailbones run in the family, mom broke hers a couple of times, so I'm unsurprised except by the method.

Yes, this is bragging. And it was worth it. That is even more bragging. Angus and I, we get along well in a lot of ways.

Additionally, Mikaela bit Angus last night and when we investigated we found that she's pregnant. She was bred three weeks ago, so she's due, but the total lack of belly until last night made me assume this breeding wasn't going to fly. I'm glad I was wrong, and I hope she does okay. It's her second litter, and Paris' first litter. These will be very special babies.

Furthermore, my class is going fantastically but is taking up a lot of time (less time once i get a laptop, which I should this week) and a post-show quarantine home bombed partway through, so I need to do a transfer of three little ones this week (Eva is totally my rat saviour right now). So busy.

It's sunny this side of the water but it was pouring in North Van this morning, so day off for me. Serious work tomorrow, though.

Talked to some distant friends on IM today. It made me happy. I'd dreamed about Marvin just last night, and there he was this morning. He reminds me of thanksgiving, and vice versa. I miss him badly just now.
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It's only seven thirty and it's getting dark. Fall's here, and with it our lovely amazing indian summer full of clear blue skies and crisp air. Walking around outside makes me feel like I'm drugged-- I suppose if I wanted to be literary about it I'd call it intoxicating. The air is clear, less of an obstacle to vision when there's light out, and things are sparklier. This weekend held the equinox.

I'm sitting in a place that feels like home, but it isn't my house. I'm over at the House of Boys- Angus, Dan, Tyler, and Nick's place. We did the cooking for Mabon, Patti's big dinner party, here, and I just finished doing some dishes. It was a big party weekend-- first Piotr's birthday, then Ty and Brit's anniversary/Ty's birthday/this place's second housewarming, then Mabon on Sunday night. They were three very different experiences but interestingly there was a core of people that showed up at all of them; Tim, Navi, Anthony, myself, Patti and Tyler that I can remember off the top of my head.

It felt wonderful to hang out with people I love again. It feels wonderful, because really I'm still here. The boys are gaming in the other room, I'm making soup with the leftovers and trying to think of how to write here.

I recently finished a book called _The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay_ that was full of the most moving writing. I had forgotten how much a turn of phrase could stir me. I had not read anything in a long time that made me want so badly to call someone and just read it to them. It was a bit difficult to get into the book, the characters took a little bit before I cared about them so much that their salvation or lack thereof really mattered to me. It was a beautiful book, that said.

I feel like I'm home right now. I mean, I'm in what feels like familiar territory. If there wasn't all this food left from Mabon I'd make muffins for the gamers. You know that role, right? When Kynnin had people over to play D&D it's the same role I chose to take.

Ramble, ramble. I always approach my points sidewise, support then thesis. Sometimes it's anecdote then thesis, but it's all the same style. I'm working up to saying that Mabon was wonderful, everyone I love in the same room, and that it was a lot a lot of work. I'm working up to saying that Angus is my boyfriend again in an official sort of way. We're both smiling a lot. It's lighter than it was. It feels really good.

It's funny, you know, I was so tired of poly. It had been sort of like a cheesegrater, not always but enough that some important bits of me were abraded away. These were the bits of me that automatically expected emotional gentleness and also the bits of me that automatically gave it. I always have had the tendency to fall into hardassery.

Kynnin and I just made some mistakes from which we never recovered, and I was never out of a relationship for long enough to stop and reset-- things kept carrying over and carrying on, different iterations of the same carelessness coming up over and over. I didn't expect to get what I wanted, and that hurt me so much that I was afraid to even know what I wanted, and then I couldn't communicate it, and then of course I couldn't get it. You see the circle. Further, I was always afraid of being left, of the Kynnin thing repeating, and so I brought in a new boy for backup and distanced from the old one in preperation for the inevitable ending, often causing it.

I'm not saying this is the only way of looking at my relationships, or the only thing that happened in them; it's not the only reason they ended or began, it's not even close to the whole of my experience of them. I'm just saying, I was caught and it had gone on long enough that I was beat down.

Let's try an explanatory chronology.

A couple weeks ago I had a party at my house, and Ty's roommate Dan came to it. We ended up talking there, and have hung out since. I made him sushi one night; he made me a steak and shiitake salad another. We had a lot of fun sleeping next to each other. He initiated the STD talk before I did, the first and only person to do so. He's twenty years old. I really like him-- for all my second guessing (do I like him because he reminds me of Marvin? Is it this or that other thing?) that statement is both true and the only one I can make about it at this point. He's the first person since Angus I've both been attracted to and liked freely, like water flowing from somewhere in my chest. That's why so much second-guessing, and also why I'm so tentative. It's been a long time, and relief is always coupled with pessimist's caution for me.

I'm not sure whether it's that which drove me into this weekend. Perhaps it's also Sickle, which is something that requires Angus' presence in Seattle every Sunday, and he works Friday and Saturday nights from 8pm-3am; it's a hard schedule to spend time with him in, and now I'm starting my Master Gardener program imminently and I'm busy Saturdays and generally Tuesdays and Thursdays till late starting the week after this one- this doesn't leave us a lot of time together. In any case, I tried to break up with Angus this weekend despite the fact that we weren't dating. What ended up happening was that we had a long, long talk and we're dating now officially, and we're tentatively poly.

I had never had any of the poly talks with Angus. I had never needed to; people told me he was hardcore monogamous, and when he expressed discomfort with me being with other people I let them slide off me like water off a candle. They just slipped away. See? New boy/old boy, but it was different this time because there was no one else.

When we broke up we were by default poly because we weren't in a negotiated structure that excluded other people. When you're not in a structure, though, you spend minimal time defining that structure. We still hadn't talked. Now we have.

We're not sure what shape this is going to take but it's more intentional than last time. He's been doing amazingly at figuring out what he wants and acting to make that happen, something he couldn't even conceive of back then. I've been independent some, not leaning on a second boy but just doing my own thing. Those are both pretty important things to have done.

So. I'm happy. I don't know what's happening next. That's all.

Oh, bleeding like crazy.

Mmmmrrr.

Jul. 8th, 2008 10:33 pm
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Met lots of cool potential roommates today-- hard to choose between them, though I think I know who I want. Gonna give it a little time to settle in before I decide. It's an oddly powerful position to be in, and one which requires saying no to a bunch of people. That's hard for me. It's neat to see how different cool people can be-- they're all hand-picked from the responses I recieved, and all people who I think I could get along with, but totally different from each other.

And! Gabe is over tonight, and might be around for awhile and even moving to Vancouver(!!!!!!) I haven't sat down and chatted with him in over a year. It's nice.

And! I made that chicken last night, which resulted in having two packed containers of meat for chicken sandwiches, salads, etc from only the breasts (I made it halfway through a leg for a midnight snack last night) and a ginormous pot of chicken stock on the stove and a bag of legs, etc n the fridge too. That is a big and tasty chicken-- I had forgotten that chickens have flavour, like turkeys do except chickenlike in nature.

And! I am PMSy, but have lovely patient people in my life.

And! My babies are the best babies. The other day I said 'these are the best babies' and Angus agreed, and I said 'all babies are the best babies' and he agreed again, and replied that he hadn't understood how that could be until now, when he's going through his second batch.

And! I am happy.

Alright.

Jul. 5th, 2008 01:35 am
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Slightly unburnt-out. Spent some time with Piotr last night, went to KMM tonight, in between there was frantic housecleaning and masquerade primping with Angus. Masquerade shopping tomorrow.

It is so good to be in a roomful of friends. Before last night I'd more or less gone into social exile because I was so busy. I need to make time to hang out with people, though. It's so important. Between the chocolate paint and the massages and just plain lots of hugs and catching up I feel human again.

I'm really looking forward to dressing up tomorrow (well tonight). I do love dressing up. I love having someone to do it with, too, and Angus is getting into this-- it's like getting ready for Sin City, the fetish nightclub. with Eva, but different given the different personalities of course. I'm not sure if it's because I'm a dyed-in-the-wool roleplayer and costuming is part of feeling out a role, or if it's because I just like pretty things and wearing pretty things is fun. Maybe some of each?

Also looking forward to having lots of people crash here tomorrow night. I'm trying to remember to tell people to bring breakfastables, because there'll be a ton of people and I have no budget to feed everyone and I want the morning to be a nice relaxed one with nobody dying of hunger. Then there's the baby viewing Sunday, landlord inspection Monday, prospective roommates mostly seeing the place Tuesday, and we'll take it from there.

Not to belabour the point, but I am still and always grateful for my friends. I've only hung out with Piotr three times, really, but two of those times involved at least five people in a shower (not that he swings my way, would you believe five or six people in a shower covered with chocolate or olive oil wouldn't end up being particularly intensely sexual?) and we're definitely kindred on a pretty deep level-- he's one of the first people I've shared the ability to talk about spiritual stuff with. Anthony and harem are just awesome to be around, a refreshing combination of level-headed and practical about their well-executed revelry. Rowan and I understand each other. Nick makes me feel very cared-for, and he's constantly upbeat-- I mean, who doesn't feel cared-for with a two-hour back massage? Bob has magically become an old and valued friend, and he makes me happy-- we've spent a lot of time together and I love that familiarity between us. We can communicate a lot without saying it or even thinking about it, and the message conveyed is caring and reassuring.

And Angus and I, when we're hanging out and he's helping me clean my house and I'm helping him primp for the masquerade and he's doing likewise for me and I'm burnt out and he's wrries and self-destructive-- Angus and I are a good team. We're not good for each other in the sense of encouraging each other to eat the right things all the time, or to be totally responsible, but we stick together when it counts and we even stick together when it doesn't, just for the hell of it. He's 100% there for me, and that remains a novel feeling for me. I mean, fuck it, who else is gonna give up most of their sleep and half their masquerade prep time to help me clean my house? And who else is going to put up with my constant chaos-generated insecurity? And who else is gonna eat what I make for them all the time, and deal with my erratic but strong need to mother-hen, and return it just when I need it?

But enough about that.

Now I have time to do the roommate hunt properly. But first, I sleep. Tomorrow, the salon.

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