I don’t ever want to write out of sheer obligation.
I worry too god damn much.
This week was a whirlwind if ever there was one. It felt like all of my professors rallied together and decided to make this the week of hell, meaning EVERYTHING was due. Although my head feels very sleep deprived and I slipped on my pledge to become caffeine free, it all feels pretty good. I gave three presentations, turned in three papers and took one exam. The best part of it all? I feel good about everything I turned in. I worked hard, and this feeling paid off. Let’s just hope I do well on all of this stuff!
Next year I will be attending graduate school and working full-time, somewhere, anywhere at this point! My life is on the precipice of extreme busy, not that I’m not busy now. Before I was terrified of not having enough time to see the people that I care about, or be able to have a quiet afternoon for myself. Yet, now that I have done college for 4 years I really do feel confident in handing high stress levels. I am excited for what is about to come my way, eager to dip my toes into it, and confidant that I will be successful.
I feel good. I think I needed this.
I got to thinking that maybe there is no such thing as “casual” dating or “casual” sex. Can something as intimate as making love really be considered “casual?” When I think “casual” I think of a ripped pair of denim shorts or a lunch date with an old friend. The steamy moments spent between the sheets or in the shower don’t seem to be synonymous with “casual.”
Sure, a girl can kick off her leather boots, strip out of her ripped tights and slither out of her little black dress while jumping into bed with an attractive European all the while convincing herself that the next day it will be more than a simple act of “casual” circumstance.
She will begin reminiscing of the whiskey and waters that were poured, the toasts made to good friends and the very moment he grabbed her waist pulling her on top of him. She will stand in the mirror the next day examining her neck spotting the evidence of last nights rendezvous. And as she stares at her reflection in the mirror she may even begin to convince herself that these “casual” acts could amount to something not so “casual.”
But, while a lady might find that kind of penetrative aggression a sign of lust … or even love it’s always the gents that are a step behind looking for another notch in their belt, or another dent in their bedpost.
Long gone are the days of handwritten love letters to a man out to war. So long are the nights spent pining for the unattainable. Now, it’s an endless stream of one-night-stands and “casual” nothings.
Has love really turned into an undefinable “casual” outing?
Bob Dylan plays on the back of the SNCC office in Greenwood, Mississippi, 1963
Actress Natalie Wood (1938-1981), with actor Michael Caine (b. 1933), date unknown.
Dancers, Mott Haven, August 1979, from the Faces in the Rubble series
A kiss in a bird
For some reason I woke up this morning thinking about all the ways that my life has changed over the past year. A year is such a short time. 12 months, 52 weeks, 365 days, 8,765 hours and 525,949 minutes. Well, I suppose when I put it like that it feels like an eternity. The point is: some people don’t accomplish much in one year, but for me this past year did just the opposite. I remember writing on New Years before we were graced with 2013 and I was begging the year to bring me something good. I wanted to be able to rid myself of lingering feelings for that unattainable newspaper reporter and I wanted to find pleasure in simply being me. I wanted to become someone or something that I could be proud of.
While my feels for said reporter lasted longer than I would have liked. I finally found peace with it. I no longer resented him for the way that he unknowingly led me on, or the way that he came to me house to cry over his ex girlfriend. I let it go. I let it all go.
I started to forgive myself for mistake that I had made in the past, and began to think of all of those one night stands/rendezvous as moments to learn from and move past rather than dwell on and feel somehow slutty or tainted.
Friendships with unlikely people began to sprout up in every facet of my life. I didn’t feel embarrassed to invite strangers over or to start spending time with co-workers. It didn’t take long for me realize that everyone is looking for a friend or someone to spend time with. If you make a gesture, it will be returned.
Many evenings in 2012 and early into 2013 I spent with tears in my eyes as I convinced myself that I wasn’t good enough. It took a beautiful leather bound journal a new fountain pen, and many evenings tirelessly writing to realize that this wasn’t the case. I was looking at it in the wrong way. I was looking at everything in my life as a measure of self worth. Why was it that when a boy told me he wasn’t ready for a relationship I took that to mean there was something wrong with me? Or, when I misinterpreted signals coming from a friend of mine to mean something more, when they didn’t, I spent days blaming myself for being such an idiot. I was always too hard on myself.
Somewhere over the past year I stopped blaming myself and being so self critical. We are human. We make mistakes. There is no sense persecuting ourselves over them.
I don’t really know where I was going with all of this. But, there it is.
The other day I looked down at a two inch thick magazine, it was Vogue of course. I couldn’t help but wonder what the old cover photographs looked like? Where they similar poses but just in different fashions? I am not quite sure why, but I decided to go back through the archives and see what there was. I stumbled on these four images that were really striking to me. None of the women’s bodies are shown in these images, and in one there isn’t a human model at all. Some of the images are quite quirky while others are purely stylistic. Personally, I love how in the third image the phone matches her hat perfectly, or that the title font is changed on the fourth image. Curiously enough, the one with the goldfish on it draws me in the most. Who wouldn’t want to know why there are goldfish on a fashion magazine? I must say, I prefer these over cover photographs of magazines today. There is so much more character here. Have any thoughts? Please share.