Monday, January 21, 2013

And Then That Fateful Night, We Had You in Our Sights

This is the best weather I have ever experienced for any length of time. There's something very particular about warm sunny days in winter that is not the same at all as mild summer days. The quality of sunshine is different, it's angled from a foreign point in space that our orientations aren't used to. I'm starting to understand why so many people say they moved here first and then their families came down. No one really expects it's going to be like this, and someone has to be the brave explorer and send notes back to the home bases. I could think of worse things than my family being here with me. 

That's a pattern in urban and state migration I hadn't thought of - all the sons and daughters venturing forth to new places, and the slow ooze of the rest of the genetic pool in that direction as well, like a slow viscosity oil drip. Moving is still a very momentous thing, you know. I think sometimes culture has reached a point of encouraging us not to move just to try and maintain control of populations, keeping infrastructure up to date and stuff like that. I guess empires always have tried to do that, population is power. But it does seem down to a precise science these days, think of how many people you know wouldn't even think about moving to another country, or domain. 

Did you know you can apply to work in Antarctica? For like, the summer season. There's a city there, a city like we used to call cities in Alaska, or even further back, a city in California, Montana, Nevada, Utah. My thoughts are very America centric these days, It's so big guys, it's just huge. It's a huge beautiful amazing continent. And then I think about how much variety there must be in the world, if we have so many giant places like America - China, India, The Congo, Siberia, Greenland.
Thank god for National Geographic when I was younger. That magazine, that whole thing, is a gift to us. Zoobooks too.  Actual zoos to, much as I hate to say that, I think they're so important to creating the kind of people we want. 

Anyway, you can apply for jobs in Antarctica, like retail jobs, baristas, servers, maintenance, that sort of shit. It's hard not to remember that maintenance always gets it in the alien movies, and I'm thinking specifically of Jurassic Park and Alien V Predator. So there is that risk. But otherwise, it's not so risky for all the other stuff - dying of exposure etc. It would just be very uncomfortable. But so would going to Mars. Maybe bravery is just your tolerance for prolonged discomfort. 

I'm having weird moments of self-awareness. Such as when I notice how much I'm referencing "self-awareness" these days. I've gotten disturbingly comfortable at asking people to do things. Girls aren't supposed to be like that, I think. But I've lost patience for the formal dancing of being friends. I've met enough people that I didn't have to do that with at all, that the rest of you are just going to have to keep up. I have a whole town to meet after all. 

I think about that too, how I had a chance for real anonymity and hermitage when I moved here, even if just for a little bit, just to try it out. And I didn't even pause to think about it, I just jumped right into it. It's not too late, I could still do it, just slip out. People move around here so much, if I just disappeared, it wouldn't be that noticeable of a circumstance. I'd send a few emails every once in a while, and just come back when I felt like it. Should I do it? I think I'd get really depressed. The history of my family, and I don't know, maybe everyone's family, is just finding that coping mechanism, that thing that really stops the depression or the anxiety from happening. I'm the lucky one there, I think all my coping mechanisms turned out to be nice things - being social, being charming, being artistic. It's easier to be weird in those circles. Carey's found theirs too I think. I don't know if Nick has, I think he has to get done with school and move somewhere to find it. He took the longer path cause of school right away, whereas Carey and I waited till we were older. But he seemed really happy in Spain, and I think he'll end up the most well traveled of any of us eventually. Maybe he already is. Good for him. Uncle John did that too, but Nick is so much nicer than him, and kind. I like both of my siblings very much, it makes me wish that our parents were going to live much longer so we could all hang out as individual adults more. That's the downside of waiting longer to grow up. 

Last night, I was standing on Princess St. downtown, in a doorway outside Movie Night. I was wearing my very ratty sequin tunic, the one that is falling apart and therefore the best one to wear. I was smoking a cigarette and looking at my phone. A guy walked, shuffled, very slowly down the sidewalk past me. The whole time I was thinking "please don't talk to me, please don't even ask me for a cigarette, not now." And he didn't, he just walked past me. But then he stopped, backed up, and stood in front of me, looking at me for a second. Then he smiled and kept walking. I laughed almost immediately, and then stopped, hoping my laugh didn't somehow make him think he should come back. So I went inside immediately, which I hadn't Hewanted to do either. On the way up the stairs, I remembered him in my brain - he was younger, wearing a hat and scarf bright with some sports logo. His coat was an olive green winter coat. He was holding some square white thing in his hands, papers? with black writing? I can't remember, I was trying so hard to not make eye contact. He might not have been homeless at all, he might have just been really really drunk, but in that case he should know that he looks homeless when he gets drunk. He also might have been crazy, like mentally ill. Or all three, who knows. It was his walk that made me think of all that, it was lopsided and zombie like. 

But I guess maybe I'm glad he found me amusing. Unless I now end up in one of those zines that someone mentioned, making fun of downtown. Which I hope is a real thing that I can go find and read, please. 

I'm supposed to start telling you that you should get 
The Little Book of Sexts for someone for Valentine's Day.

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