Sunday, October 15, 2006

As if I weren't homesick enough (for upstate New York, which I loved), this article in Cooking Light had to go and make it worse. It's on the Seaway Trail, a series of little highways up the coast of Lake Ontario to the St. Lawrence River. I used to ride my bike on those roads. The little beer glass on the map? Yeah, that's for the Sackets Harbor Brewing Company, my old haunt. And that crazy lighthouse is also in Sackets, where I lived before I bought my adorable little house and where I still had friends and spent a great deal of my leisure time. I really miss it up there, especially right now when the fall color is at its peak and the snows will soon fly. I loved my little house and my neighborhood. I'm beginning to think I should have worked at getting through the NY State Police Academy--I'd be in it now, in fact--or found some other way to stay up there...but here's the thing: being out here in a town and job I only feel lukewarm about has pushed me to law school. So eventually, it will all be the right path...I just have nearly a year to stick it out here and set myself up for success in law school and beyond. And maybe I can get back up there at some point.

And on that note, I'm taking a test-prep course (to the tune of $1400 I did NOT have to spend) three nights a week. It makes for some brutally long days--work at 7am for eight hours, drive over an hour, home at about midnight--but it will really be worth it. I've only had two classes so far, and the light bulb has already started burning.

Turns out we were all wrong about my friend S's boyfriend--he's an ass and she has dumped him. Now I'm sorry I encouraged her to work it through with him. He's deceitful and manipulative, he was cheating on her, and she's moving all the way to Tampa to get herself away from him. Which means that both of my close friends here are gone, both to Tampa. If I weren't so dead-set on law school next year, I'd do the same thing--I really do not like this town and I'm looking forward to getting back on my side of the Mississippi River without having to keep coming out here. This limbo stuff is for the birds, but I know it's what I have to do to get where I want to be.

Sunday, October 01, 2006

The Uda Loop

I am so averse to the bar scene here that I only go out on weekend nights to play poker. No poker last night, so I settled in to watch a movie and just enjoy my home—I still appreciate the normalization, not sitting in the den amid the piles of chaos.

My friend S called—she’s been dating T, which has been a huge relief to us all. S’s tastes have heretofore run to Thug, as in, plumber ass-crack pants, backwards baseball hat, that “I’m too cool for you people” air, you know the type. Not so with T—he’s outstanding, loves her kids, and seems the perfect solution to her aversion to moving through life without a man around.

But right now they’re having big issues, their first real fight. I listened patiently and provided what feedback I could, but after we’d gone over Every. Single. Minute. Detail, I became impatient and told her it was her decision, I can’t make it for her, and I had stuff to do. Bottom line, he got caught in a big lie, she completely melted down to the point of near-violence, and now he doesn’t seem to want to talk about it and work it out. Read=he didn’t want to spend hours going over Every. Single. Minute. Detail…hell, I’m a girl and it was about to drive me crazy.

I seem to think more like a man the older I get—I just don’t have the patience to microanalyze every utterance, every gesture, every text message or phone call. My final advice: first of all, NEVER have a meltdown like that, especially that early in the game. Men do not respond well to female meltdowns, ever. Even if he did something shitty, to me, meltdown=The End. I put myself in that situation, and if a man I was with completely lost his bearing like that, I would most definitely look to the door. Second, stick to the big issues when you finally DO talk to him…do not comb through the minutia. I know men HATE the whole “We need to talk” dynamic from the get-go, so to torture him with hours of explaining every single gesture would shut down any human with the patience of a sage.

So then we hung up and I went about the business of putting together a really killer tamale pie. It was in the oven when S called back.

“Hey, are you busy?”

Me: “Umm, sort of, why?”

S:  “Can you come over here? Because Cherie thinks I should dump him and I want to talk to you both at the same time.”

I hesitated. Keep in mind, S is ten years my junior. The prospect of spending the next two hours arguing over something I had resolved and dismissed in my own mind (and had long since tired of hearing about) sounded like about as much fun as a poke in the eye with a sharp stick. And to put a third party in the mix, a woman who’s been married to the same guy for over ten years and does not see this thing from the perspective of a single mother of two? Nein, danke.

So I compromised and went over to S’s house later that night—I’m a good friend and I know she needs to keep on talking about it…but MAN it’s easy to see why men think all women are neurotic naggers. Not that S is, but to obsess over it for a week straight…sigh, I’d rather be single forever than have to comb through minefields ad infinitum.

So now I’m on my way out to the desert to shoot my new firearms—the .357 hand-cannon and the .22 Luger. Which sounds like a much more satisfying way to deal with frustration than getting caught in the relationship Uda Loop.