Monthly Archives: March 2012

A Friendship Without Benefit

Jana: As a kid, I did have some good friends – other kids who’d known me forever and didn’t even notice my dirty tapered jeans. But as a kid in new social situations, like musical theater-based summer camps, I didn’t make friends so easily. I WANTED to, of course, but I was terrified. What I’d usually do is find a girl I knew I wanted to be friends with, develop a crush-like obsession with her, and then be unable to speak in her presence. Sometimes, by the second-to-last day of camp, I’d have forged a mini friendship with her, which was incredibly elating! But then camp was over, and with it, the future I’d imagined for us.

There was one such situation, though, that stood out from the others because it LASTED past the usually depressing final day of camp. This was a friendship that, against all odds, went on for at least a couple of post-camp months. It was like this: I met Arianna at musical theater camp (ok fine, it was OPERA camp. I’ll get into it later). We discovered that we had the same birthday, which I was glad that she also recognized as being AMAZING and OH MY GOD! and a sign that we were destined for friendship. We started to hang out at camp, and then the day of the performance I remember being really nervous and excited because she had her mom talk to my mom and set up a play date! This was really going somewhere.

This is what I looked like on the day of the performance. Which offers no answers as to why I had any friends, anywhere. 

But then, we actually had to HAVE the play dates. My memory of these “dates” is that they were just really frightening. I lost all sense of what I might say when I was with her. When I did start to talk, I was so nervous that my throat would close up and I’d start coughing instead. I remember being in her room, awkwardly standing while she sat at her desk, deafening silence surrounding us as I racked my brain for something to say. I never thought of anything.

This friendship was also where I developed my deep fear of repeating a story I’d already told. One time, we were walking through the town center and passed a toy store. I had a thing to say! I told her, haltingly, that I really wanted a personal mini bubble gum machine (WHY did I want this? I DO NOT KNOW). But about halfway through this “story”, I realized that I had ALREADY told her about it! It was one of the things I’d coughed out in her room earlier! It was terrible. She smiled, but I knew I’d made a big mistake.

STILL, she wanted to keep hanging out. Again, WHY she wanted this, when I clearly could offer NOTHING of any value and was obsessed with useless objects, was always a mystery to me. But I kept dreading it and then going to hang out with her. I even went to her birthday party, where all of her friends danced to the Spice Girls and I stood in the corner, not dancing or talking to anyone, wearing a sweatshirt which was decorated with the words “I’m Not Listening” and a picture of a guy sticking his fingers in his ears (one of my staple outfits).

Eventually, the friendship must have faded, which was a huge relief. Recently, my mom and I re-hashed it over dinner. “I remember, I know, that was so weird,” she said. “Dad and I also couldn’t figure out why she kept wanting to hang out with you! But then when you were in high school – oh my god, yes! Now I remember. I read something about her in the paper – that she was advocating for the gay-straight alliance or something as an out lesbian at her school. It made so much sense to me when I read that – THAT was it, that’s definitely why she kept wanting you around. She thought you were gay too, because you looked like such a little lesbian!”

Ah. Mystery solved.

Catherine: I want us to come out with a book only so I can use the title I didn’t realize would be a best-seller till just now – Jana: The Little Lesbian. Bestseller. Stores won’t be able to keep it in stock. Little lesbians everywhere will be crushed when in chapter 13 you finally reveal you like boys, even though it is a complete mystery why they like you. I will play the winning sidekick, coaxing you away from that (actually really awesome) sweatshirt, taming those weird hairs of yours that always stick up. In the climatic final scene (set at the prom), a teacher will ask you to leave, assuming you are from the middle school. I will stick up for you and it will go alright at best, while someone  probably laughs at us and calls us fat before throwing a cake onto our pastel satin gowns. I don’t know. I’m still working out the ending.

Advertisements
Tagged , , , , , , , , , ,

Happy Birthday To Me: I Wasn’t Cool in Middle School

Catherine: It’s my birthday! Happy birthday to me, specifically. Before I get going, may I suggest liking our facebook page as a special birthday gift to yours truly? Or perhaps, if you wanted to get craycray, putting us in your status? Think about it.

In middle school, I was cast as the lead in “Guys in Dolls.” This may have been pre-type casting, because there was a scene where my character gets  drunk and sings weird shit like “if I were a salad, I KNOW I’d be splashing my dressing” and “boy, if I were a duck I’d quack!” I’ve probably said those things under the influence before.

Well, I thought getting the lead in the school musical would make me cool, because that’s what I wanted – you wanted it too, even if you won’t admit it. It uh, it didn’t make that wish come true.

I will forever remember this event:

It was tech day of our show, a weekend day, and it was my birthday. I had left the auditorium, and as I headed back, three popular boys who were doing lights or stage crew were hanging by the entrance. One of them, Greg (real name, I ain’t protectin’ his sorry ass), said, “Hey, it’s your bithday, right?” To which I was like, “Yeah!” (Inner dialogue: “Greg is talking to me – I’VE MADE IT!”) Greg then goes on to say, “Happy Birthday!” (Pause) “To a LOSER.”

ARE YOU KIDDING ME.

THIS SHIT HAPPENS. And it RUINED my whole birthday, and I STILL think of that moment in my life with regret. I wasn’t cool enough to have a comeback. But I am going to take that chance now.

Here goes.

Me: “I’m a loser? I know you are… BUT WHAT AM I?” (Inner dialogue: “Nailed it!”)

Greg: “No, you are a loser. I am not a loser. You are, and I specified that.”

Me: “… oh.”

So. That is an amended version of what could have happened on that fateful day, as I walked into the auditorium fighting back tears.

Greg, wherever you are, I hope you aren’t still a total asshole. And also that you grew out the Mario Lopez haircut.

Jana: This story hurts my heart, especially because I can actually picture it, entirely. All I can say is that, had I been there, I’m sure I would have been crying for one reason or another (I QUITE often cried during weekend rehearsals for musicals), and maybe we both would have been sitting alone, you mentally repeating the Greg incident and me crying either because the love of my life didn’t love me back, or because I hadn’t gotten into college (both things that I openly cried about during Saturday rehearsals). Maybe we would have decided to sit in the hallway together and, each taking an earbud, listen to the “Dashboard Confessional” CD playing in my discman. Maybe it would have brought us comfort.

I retro-actively offer you that solace as my birthday gift. Welcome to 26! It’s mostly just as devastating as 16.

Tagged , , , , , , , , ,

An Irish Memory

Jana: St. Patrick’s Day is a holiday that matters only in Boston, or to big drinkers, or to people who look really good in green (ie, redheads – girls, not boys). Also, I guess, to the Irish. Luckily for myself and for Catherine, we together meet all of these criteria in one way or another. PLUS, St. Patrick’s Day is the day before Cath’s birthday, thus essentially BEING her birthday. For all of these reasons, we decided to go extra hard on St. Pat’s 2007, also known as Cathy‘s 21st birthday. The anniversary of this occasion seems as good at time as any to do our first ever “in college, we were drunk and did stupid things!” post. Happy Holidays.

Catherine: I gotta say, I am SHOCKED it has taken this long to dip into our many terrible college drinking times. How is it possible we haven’t tackled that night I fell asleep on a stranger’s lawn on the walk home? Strange. But, on with the story.

Jana: We had just returned from spring break, which we’d both spent at our parents’ houses doing absolutely nothing. It was, I believe, a Saturday night. As was our custom in those days, I collected approximately all of my clothing into plastic bags and arrived in Cathy’s room to try them all on in different combinations and with different jewelry. It took us a while, but here are the outfits (and, god help us, poses) we came up with:

   

I don’t have much defense for these pictures except to say that WE WERE IN VERMONT, and WE WERE TWENTY-ONE, although that in no way excuses the tiara (it DOES explain the wool socks). Also I’m sure Catherine stands by these outfits and still thinks they are great. Ah well.

Catherine: I wish there was a way we could go back in time and un-delete all the pictures taken BEFORE these ones. God knows these weren’t the only shots taken, but apparently these ones were the best – the ones deemed worthy for the facebook album. Also, Jana, on my birthday, and when I am 20, I can think that wearing a tiara is a cool idea. Although I do feel like it wasn’t my idea somehow? Not sure. But MOVING ON.

Jana: Once we’d settled on these, feeling really attractive, we waltzed into the kitchen to make ourselves a celebratory drink. We were drinking Bacardi Limon mixed with diet coke, a drink our group of friends had affectionately termed “Paula Abduls”, because they are very low calorie and probably Paula was drinking them during most of American Idol.

Catherine: Correction: She was definitely drinking them during most of American Idol.

Jana: The point is that, about 4 Paula Abduls in, we were with all our friends and dancing in the living room. An important thing to note is that the next day we were all set to attend a local child (in fact, our friend’s son)’s birthday party, and in anticipation of this event there was a large blow-up dinasour in the living room, which people danced with.

As Cathy demonstrates, here.

Catherine: Besides dancing, I would like to mention that pictures were taken with the dinosaur in compromising sexual positions, and also drinking. Sadly, neither Jana or I appear in these photos, so we have to refrain from sharing them.

Jana: Eventually, we went to karaoke. While this is not something I REMEMBER, I do know that it happened. At this point in my life my friends were all huge karaoke fans, whereas I was not generally a karaoke participant; yet, I karaoke-d on this night. I believe I met a gentleman who joined me on the stage (a quick peek at my actual journal for the day reveals “met some guy named kevin i think who i gave my number to”, so I guess his name was Kevin). Catherine, I know, sang her standard: Alanis‘ “You Oughta Know“.

Catherine: Quick side note about “You Oughta Know” (one of the best rock songs, ever, yeah, I said it.) Last time I was at JP’s, I sang “You Oughta Know” and closed out the night. I only know this not because I recall having a blast singing it, but because I saw pictures of me singing on my camera the next day and was informed that I had closed out the night while swaying in an enthusiastic but ultimately awkward way.

I don’t know what I sang.

Jana: The point is that around 3 AM we ended up at the local 24-hour diner, Henry’s, where after eating a hot dog AND eggs I fell asleep on the table and someone took a picture of me which I mercifully have been unable to locate.

Catherine: Henry’s is no longer open 24-hours. They had discontinue this perk after a late night food fight, which I feel a lot of regret about missing.

Jana: The next point is that the following morning, we still had to go to the child’s birthday party. I remember waking up and feeling like: how could I get dressed? I couldn’t. Could I? But, I did, and I chose to wear a pair of bell-bottom style khakis with a light blue tank top and a gray sweater, and to straighten my hair without washing it first. At the party, I looked and felt like this:

It was a real “You have no ability to dress yourself nor any right to be in the world, at any time of day” moment. In that regard, it was similar to my own 21st birthday, which I shall have to touch upon another time.

A la New Year’s Eve, we advise you to stay in this St. Patrick’s Day. At the very least, it’s best to leave your camera at home.

Tagged , , , , , , , ,

Gimme Sixty Kittens.

Catherine: Not like I think you need any more proof that I am going to be/perhaps already am a crazy cat lady, but here is some fuel for the fire.

This morning, whilst driving to work, an adorable kittencat crossed the road and all was good! But then I noticed that the kittencat had been viciously attacked and was missing most of his/her kittencat tail and the tail bone (literally) was sticking out exposed.

I teared up. Immediately.

My first instinct was to try to save said kittencat, and bring the kittencat to a vet, but Will pointed out that it was a feral cat, and that is just what life is for these cats?

THIS MAKES ME WANT TO DIE.

I am adding a picture of Jones and Maggie, resident cats, in an attempt to not go jump off a bridge in light of the fact that I cannot help or save every kittencat in the world.

KITTENCATS! Calming down..Calm, returning.

Tagged , , , , , , ,

Slugging in the Spring

Jana: In honor of daylight savings time, here is a mini PSA post.

It was April vacation, 1998, when my friend and I invented Slugging. What, you are probably asking yourself, is Slugging? Well, readers, Slugging is a phenomenal activity for children and adults of all ages. It requires only a few sleeping bags, a (preferably carpeted – ok definitely carpeted) staircase, and a desire to have an awesome time. Participants should be wearing sweatpants or other pajama-like clothing items. Ideally, participants are in the middle of a blissful, week-long sleepover extravaganza, and have been wearing said pajama items for days.

A good way to warm up for Slugging is to put on thick socks and slide around the kitchen for a while. It’s definitely also ok to eat pieces of whatever is being made for dinner, to occasionally fall down, and then to feel bored of sliding and get out the stilts that you received for christmas (after BEGGING for them. They weren’t delivered in time for christmas morning, which made you cry, but then the company felt so bad about the mistake that they sent two pairs. This is good news for your friend). Walk on the stilts until one of them suddenly shoots out from under your arm and nearly hits someone in the face (at which point other members of the household may request that they be put away – it’s best to comply with this).

After sliding and stilting, what will come next? That’s right: the time for Slugging is now. Leave the thick socks on. Cover the stairs with the sleeping bags. Also, it’s a good idea to put some pillows at the bottom of the staircase, forming a sort of pillow bed. Then, climb to the top of the stairs, together. Side by side, get down onto your stomachs. Count to three. On three, propel yourselves forward down the stairs. Enjoy the rush! You’re alive! Collapse into the pillows. Laugh for approximately five minutes. Jump up and repeat.

This can be done tournament-style. It can include spectators. It will not get old. Happy Spring!

Flower Drawing 2

Good thing I titled this work of art and signed it as “me”. Wouldn’t have known it was a flower. WOULD have known it was by me. 

Catherine: My favorite thing is the caption for the photo. That is my favorite. What a way to comeback, MARCH, HERE WE ARE! SORRY WE HAVE BEEN AWAY!

Tagged , , , , , , , ,