Mad About You

… a couple of fools running wild and freeeeee!

I’m freaking addicted to the Magic Sunny Lite Mix on AccuRadio. I put it on the 70s/80s sub-channel and I’m transported back to laying in the dark across the bench seat in my dad’s old LTD, frigging with the dial to get channels from New York to come in on the radio. The eerie green glow of the channel indicator the only source of light. That fluttery nervousness in my stomach seemed permanent then. Everything was new. Each day a new discovery. The highs were so crazy high, and the lows sickenly devastating. We couldn’t imagine how things could get better, then how things could get worse, and then the world showed us more.

When did that stop? When did I stop saying things like, “This is the best day of my life!” because I knew for sure that as good as the day might be there would likely be another better? When did I stop saying things like, “This is the worst thing ever! I’ll just die!” because I knew for sure that as bad as it might be it can always be worse and no matter how bad it is I won’t die, I’ll handle it and keep on keeping on? Is this what being grown-up means? When did that happen?

Listening to Matthew Wilder’s Break My Stride, Toto’s Africa, Phil Collins’ In the Air Tonight, Chicago’s Hard Habit to Break, or The Commodores’ Easy takes me back, helps me remember, helps me tap into those feelings. And right now that seems important. That’s what I’m writing about.

What About Love

“Don’t you want someone to care about you?”

My first instinct, “Of course, that’s a silly question!”

My second thought, “Someone does care about me.”

My third pondering, “Are you behaving like a person who doesn’t want someone to care about you?”

My fourth question, “You do want someone to care about you, don’t you?”

And finally, unexpected revelation, “No, I don’t. Nobody should care about me. I wouldn’t if I were them.”

You did me a favour by pointing out the obvious, by forcing me to think about my situation. I might have gone on for years believing I had found love, that I felt love, that I even wanted love. You saved me a lot of time.

If I didn’t hate you so much, I might even thank you.

Vivid

The full moon was Thursday night so this week has been an exhausting mess of vivid dreams. Normally, I get more before the moon and then it starts to wane after, but not so this month. The thing about vivid dreams is that they’re so interesting and clear that I want to watch them play out, like a movie, sometimes I don’t want them to end at all. So sometimes I will stay in bed for 12 or 14 hours, truly not getting any rest because I’m wrapped up in these dreams, but yet unwilling to let them go. This weekend has been that kind of weekend. Maybe I’m also trying to catch up on sleep lost earlier this week when I only slept a couple of hours here or there, I don’t know. But Friday night and Saturday night were 12 hours in bed dreaming. Now, I have a headache. Too much bedtime.

Last night’s dream centred around these flying machines I had invented. Have you seen the movie Danny Deckchair? It’s a good one, you should rent it if you haven’t. So my flying machines were more like those swing seats at the exhibition, the kind for the little kids where there is a bar across the front so they can’t fall out. The seats were attached to one big balloon, not as big as a hot air balloon, but like a fairly good sized helium balloon. We were in the field behind my grandparent’s house. I had obviously tested the contraptions before because now the whole family was going on a trip. Into outer space, to see the moon. Well, not the whole family. I was staying on the ground to monitor everyone and I think I may have had the power to override their controls and bring them back by remote control if necessary.

So my sisters, their husbands, and their kids each had their own flying machine. Everyone was wearing the cutest little space suits. And they’d be gone for two days. I had Mom’s travel trailer set up in the field, with all my radar and satellite equipment. So Mom, Dad, me and Nick were going to stay there until everyone came back.

It was a damp overcast morning with our ankles buried in wisps of rolling fog. The kids were so excited, chattering a hundred miles a minute. Everyone strapped into their own individual seat and started lifting off into the air. The ceiling was so low they disappeared into the clouds almost immediately. But poor little Anna. She was the smallest and the youngest and she wasn’t prepared to be weightless and flying. So she lifted off faster than she expected and then the wind took her and she drifted sideways out over the field toward the river. She wasn’t afraid, just saying, “Whoa!” But I was worried. She was off track and far away from everyone else. I sent Mom and Dad in the truck to follow her from the ground and I went into the trailer to check the instruments. Everyone else was rising nicely, right on schedule. The kids were having a ball. I could hear them through microphones. I told Sherry and Gary we were bringing Anna down and keeping her with us, for them not to worry.

Then I found Anna on the radar. She was drifting over the trees in Barnettville, headed toward Renous. I radioed Mom and Dad and told them to head to Renous, I’d bring her down by the church there. I’d make sure she didn’t get into the prison’s no-fly zone. Then I went to work, taking control of Anna’s flying machine, and talking with her on the radio. “Kellie, it’s like you’re in my head!” she said. She was surprised to hear me. I took her mind off of Mommy and Daddy by getting her to tell me what she was seeing. This also helped me guide her to the ground safely. Mom and Dad weren’t there yet. So I chatted with her and told her how to unhook herself from her seat and get out of her space suit. By that time my parents arrived and they picked her up to bring her back to the trailer.

That was only the first of many unexpected blips in the journey that I had to figure out and fix. We lost radio contact with Jules for a bit. Samuel drifted off course. Paulina decided she didn’t want to do this anymore and she wanted to go home. Gary’s flow of oxygen malfunctioned. And much more. It was a tense two days spent in the cramped trailer huddled over screens. But finally, about 12 hours after I laid down to go to sleep, after waking a dozen times and falling back into the dream again and again, finally, everyone got back safe and sound from their adventure into outer space. And then I could get up and start my day and hope that was the end of the very vivid dreams for another month.

Addicted

Maybe I’m addicted,
I’m out of control,
but you’re the drug
that keeps me from dying.
Maybe I’m a liar,
but all I really know is
you’re the only reason I’m trying.

–Enrique Iglesias, Addicted

I think I’m addicted and I’m so freaking excited about it that I can barely contain myself. No, it’s not wine. No, not drugs. I haven’t started smoking again and this chocolate thing is just a phase, honest, I can quit anytime I want.

I’m writing a book! For real, I’m actually doing it this time. And I can’t stop. It’s all I think about and all I want to do and I dream in scenes every night and I add new words to blank pages every day and I show people drafts and they like it and want to see more. I am freaking out! My writing drive hasn’t been like this since 2000. The only difference is that back then I didn’t have the skills I have now. I was lacking in some very basic elements. So not everything I wrote was crap, there were nuggets, but overall I wrote a collection of unpublishable short stories. This time I’m writing something I think is fit for print. And I’m excited by the process and loving the adrenaline rush.

Time Wasting with Q107

T in TO sent me this link with a note saying number 17 was funny and reminded her of me for some reason … hmm, she may have a point, but number 7 is totally me. I thought I’d give it a whirl. I like memes.

1. You can press a button that will make any one person explode. Who would you blow up? Let me preface my answer by saying blowing up people is not cool, do not try this at home kids … but hypothetically, in a Bugs Bunny world where a blown up person is just left with a dirty face and a few wisps of smoke drifting from their fingertips, I would blow up Elizabeth Hasselbitch because that girl makes my face hurt.

2. You can flip a switch that will wipe any band or musical artist out of existence. Who will it be? I’m a music lover not eraser and yet who doesn’t think the world would be a better place with less Toby Keith? Can I get an amen there? Hell yeah.

3. Who would you really like to just punch in the face? I cannot condone violence … unless the person is truly a bad person, so … OJ Simpson.

4. What is your favorite cheese? Nothing fancy, Old Cheddar for me.

5. You can only have one kind of sandwich. Every sandwich ingredient known to humankind is at your immediate disposal. What kind of sandwich will you eat? The Pulled Pork sandwich from Boston Pizza in the Jack Daniels BBQ sauce, because I had the BBQ Pulled Pork Pizza the other night and I’m craving this thing like crazy now!

6. You have the opportunity to sleep with the movie celebrity of your choice. We are talking no-strings-attached sex and it can only happen once. Who is the lucky celebrity of your choice?
Movie celebrity huh … only one? That’s way tough … I can’t do it, I can’t decide on just one. Short list: Cillian Murphy, Gale Harold, Timothy Olyphant, Matt Damon and Mark Wahlberg.

7. You have the opportunity to sleep with the music celebrity of your choice, who will it be? Jon Bon Jovi. Hands down, without question.

8. Now that you’ve slept with two people in a row, you seem to be having an excellent day because you just came across a hundred-dollar bill on the sidewalk. What do you buy? Hell, if I’m sleeping with Cillian Murphy (or any of those guys) AND Jon Bon back to back I gotta buy a pack of smokes and a bottle of absenthe!

9. You just got a free plane ticket to anywhere. You have to depart right now. Where are you gonna go? Ireland because Cillian and Bono are there, and my family roots, plus I have acquaintances living there, and I was published there, and there’s a workshop I’ve always wanted to take there, and Frank McCourt grew up there, and I believe in faeries.

10. An angel appears out of heaven and offers you a lifetime supply of the beverage of your choice. It is? Do you even need to ask? Hello? Is this thing on? Red red wine.

11. Rufus appears out of nowhere with a time-traveling phone booth. You can go anywhere in the PAST. Where do you go? I’m so happy to see Rufus alive and well I’ll probably end up in a 70s audience learning “Seven Dirty Words.” But if I keep my wits about me I’d go to the crucifixion, just to see what’s up with that for real.

12. You discover a beautiful island upon which you may build your own society. You make the rules. What is the first rule you put into place? Be excellent to each other.

13. You have been given the opportunity to create the half-hour TV show of your own design. What is it? A reality show called The underHills, think Sex and the City meets Pimp my Doublewide.

14. What is your favorite curse word? Much to my throttled ex-boyfriend’s dismay, it is Jesus Christ.

15. One night you wake up because you heard a noise. You turn on the light to find that you are surrounded by MUMMIES. The mummies aren’t really doing anything, what do you do? Dude, think about it! If I don’t die of fear on the spot, I flee the building in my piss soaked jammies and run for my freaking life.

16. Your house is on fire! What do you do? Get out! Duh!

17. The Angel of Death has descended upon you. Fortunately, the Angel of Death is pretty cool and in a good mood, and it offers you a half-hour to do whatever you want before you bite it. Whatcha gonna do in that half-hour? Screw the boy who lives upstairs … or you know call all my loved ones and tell them I’m toast, but I’m okay with it and they shouldn’t be sad and I want them to play Styx’s “Come Sail Away” at my funeral … hell, I can probably multitask and do both.

18. You accidentally eat some radioactive vegetables. They were good, and whats even cooler is that they endow you with the super-power of your choice! What super-power is it? Invisibility, because I’ve always wanted to know what people say about me when I’m not in the room. PLUS, then I could sneak onto airplanes and travel the world, going to concerts, hanging out on movie sets, visiting Matt Damon’s trailer while he’s napping …

19. You can re-live any point of time in your life. The time-span can only be a half-hour, though. What half-hour of your past would you like to experience again? Wow, I thought about this a long time, on the one hand I’m all about looking forward and not dwelling on the past, on the other hand there are a lot of places, people, experiences that I would love to relive. I think I’d go all the way back to when I was a naive teenager. The fall of 1984, steaming up the windows of my Dad’s black LTD, with “Islands in the Stream” playing on the radio. Because I could use a dose of innocence in my life. Because it would be invigorating to feel like a teenager falling in love for the first time.

20. You can erase any horrible experience from your past. What will it be? Well here’s the thing, I don’t think I’d want to erase the horrible experiences because I learned some good lessons by going through them. But if I had to delete something horrible it wouldn’t be what you might expect, none of the big stuff. I wear that trauma like a badge of honour, a testament to my strength and will. I guess I would delete any one of the many horrible experiences with the pookie monster. There were so many of them that I don’t think I would have learned any less if one magically disappeared.

21. You got kicked out of the country for being a time-traveling heathen who sleeps with celebrities and has super-powers. But check this out you can move anywhere. Where are you going? It’s hard to pick some place you’ve never actually visited before but I think I should be safe in saying New York City. I’d want to stay on the continent so then maybe I might have a hope of having my family come visit sometimes.

22. This question still counts, even for those of you who are under age, if you were banned from every bar in the world except one, which one would it be? I’m not big on bars, but I would not want to be banned from O’Donaghue’s Pub.

23. Hopefully you didn’t mention this in the super-powers question… If you did, then we’ll just expound on that. Check it out… Suddenly, you have gained the ability to fly! Whose house are you going to fly to first, and be like “Check it out I can FLY!?” Kevin Smith’s house, because I know he would definitely appreciate it, and then he’d invite me in to play poker. I’d win him over with my fabulous personality and we’d become the bestest of friends. Then maybe I’d get a cameo in his next movie.

24. The constant absorption of magical moon beams mixed with the radioactive vegetables you consumed earlier has given you the ability to resurrect the dead famous person of your choice. So which celebrity will you bring back to life? Hunter S. Thompson or Elvis.

Seasonal Stuff

Odd weather on the river today. One minute thunder and lightning, the next I’m all fogged in. The higher temperature has been resting in my fingers and hips all week. But it’s dropping now again, so there will be more climate adjustment in my joints and then I should settle in.

It’s been a rough couple of weeks. I’ve been really sick with the cold/flu since two Mondays ago. Today I feel like it’s almost gone. Almost. Add to that the arthritis and a bit of seasonal depression, and I’ve been a bit of a sad sack. I haven’t been sleeping very well, tossing and turning for a couple of hours here and there at odd times of the day and night. It hasn’t been uncommon to find me bundled in fuzzy blankets on the futon watching Two and a Half Men reruns at 5am.

Yesterday seemed to be a turning point. I got up early on two hours restless sleep but felt energized. I did laundry, dishes, made a boiled dinner, wrote articles, reviewed articles, edited articles, switched my blog from Blogger to WordPress, talked on the phone for hours, read 25 pages in a book I’m reviewing, watched any tv programming I needed to catch up from the week, watched the movie Evita, sent email, set up interviews, did more dishes, cleaned the bathroom, cleaned out the utility closet, did more laundry, wrote fiction, organized my dvds, searched for books I needed, chatted on MSN, and so it went on. And it all kind of begs the question … was I having a manic episode? Am I manic/ depressive?

It’s not the first time the thought has crossed my mind. I seem to have periods of tremendous productivity followed by periods of almost complete shut-down. Mind you the past couple of weeks I wasn’t completely shut-down, I attended and even chaired meetings, wrote thousands of words, and edited thousands more. But I was tired and sad and getting through took a very large effort. And then I went into hyper overdrive and tried to do everything in one 24 hour period. Today I’m a little sleepy obviously and moving a little slower but my brain is still buzzing with ideas and tasks, the issue seems to be a lack of focus on where to even begin.

Maybe this is just the normal flow of things. I was sick. Now I’m not. Maybe. I wonder if other people cycle from one extreme to the other.