Friday, March 22, 2013

The Love That Remains After the In Love

 The temptation to let the entire month of March go by without acknowledging it is overwhelming. It's already the 22nd. I had Spring Break, and I had Midterms, and I had shows and taxes and got a car and got laid by some very nice people and one terrible person. But I knew he was a terrible person before it happened, so that was fine. I did my taxes and made sure my FAFSA was in and worried about school bills. I missed a lot of work, and then worked a lot to make up for it. My hair got super long and I started wearing very dark smudgy eyeliner again. Today for instance, I'm dressed in what I call my 1970s Italian summer outfit. This year I'm just going to try and channel Sophia Loren. 

I used to go to this place called The Tower, which was an apartment above a storefront on Lorain Ave. In the storefront was a tax prep place, with only one sign to advertise that, and windows covered with butcher paper and dirt. Across the street was a convenient store, and when I walked over there to get cigarettes, the old Syrian guy who worked there would check my I.D. and exclaim "Oh! Brigitte Bardot!" Every. single. time. So I've got to just start with the first name and next learn French and Italian (not or, and. Let's be honest about this.) And I'm going to have to get kinda tan but not too tan, and wear nothing but black or white underwear, and never run out of mascara. Get it? Mascara? Run?

Fuck you March. 

""In North Carolina, it's 60 and I'm cold. In Ohio it's 30 and you're angry." - Scott

There is a moment where you look at someone and you see them very clearly. Exactly what measure of asshole they are currently, and what kind of sweetheart they are, and the veil of whatever tolerance you were willing to give them lifts. Any excuses, any lust for power or affection, and forgiveness you gave them in the name of circumstance - it all disappears and you're left with the naked fact. How much exactly do you like this person, and how important are they in your life?

Most of the time, the answer is not very. Sometimes you realize you hate them, other times you know you love them. Sometimes you see that they used to be really important, but you shouldn't make decisions including them anymore, that period of your life is over.  

And that's what happened with me and Cleveland during Spring Break. 
Not Cleveland the people, the people were fine. I saw friends I missed a lot, and family, cats and dogs. I didn't get to talk to anyone as much as I would have liked, I wanted an entire day for each person and then I would have just had to move back home. 
But Cleveland the city? 
You know how that's not always a bad thing, to see and know a thing clearly for what it is? In fact, it's the best thing right? The Love that remains after the In Love is over.

I saw my old cat Eddy of 13, 14 years? for the first time in six months, and realized I was genuinely not a cat person, but that I was going to cry a lot when she died, because she was the last part of 20s me that remained, hanging on tenaciously, refusing to get older.

I saw The Prince and realized I was always going to be in love with him, and that we would make the worst couple ever, and that I'd be lost without him in my life and I was never going to stop talking to him again.

 As soon as I articulated this to myself, I missed my Hitman like someone had just swung a cinderblock at my head. But once the worst of the pain was over, it was okay. That's how it works, just deal with the pain and then it will be over and you will hardly remember except every time you fall in love with anyone ever again.

The Prince took me to Cafe Miami, finally, after never successfully going there with me our entire whirlwind summer last year, because we never got up in time. That was crazy as shit. I can't even begin to explain it, because you aren't me or the Prince, and so therefore when you go, you'll appreciate it in your own way, but definitely not our way. He complained the whole time about how fucking cold it was, and it was horribly cold. There was this white stuff on the ground and all this frozen water, and it was practically unlivable. But he also, somehow, without planning to, took me to the library, and to walk on the breaker rocks, and to the coffeeshop I loved, and managed somehow to give me the best kind of Cleveland non-tourist experience. Which I don't usually need any help with, in my own city, but I was just SO COLD. And that's why he's so good with couchsurfers, I guess.

Everyone who saw me at shows asked me where the old confident Bridget had gone. I thought about how the only thing people in NC ever told me is how they wondered at how confident I was, and then I got very quiet.

I saw Jere, and discovered that moving away from him has made him infinitely more valuable to me and I want him to move here please and be my exploration partner again. I can't talk more about that here, but it's absolutely imperative he do this.

I had sex in an abandoned church made yoga studio, and realized I got off more on it being a yoga studio than a church even, as far as desecration sexiness goes, because I find yoga just as creepy as church, and sex in places that creep you out is a power grab. I think that's why I want to tell everyone about it, because I deal with yoga as a presence in my life every day at work, and I don't hate. I even respect it. But I am scared of it. It tries to tell me every day how ugly and unworthy I am, because I'm fat and not rich and drink and smoke. So having sex in it's own lair is kind of a coup for me.  

All the shows went pretty well I think. 
I made some money, I sold some books. 
I saw Mom and Dad at the farm, the dogs came back covered in horse manure. 
Then I drove back the 14 hours by myself in a car that I had been convinced would leave me to die in West Virginia somewhere, only it didn't, and instead I just drove through the mountains singing for an entire day and it was kinda easy and amazing. Turns out I like driving by myself  a lot. I'm sure that's not a surprise to anyone who's ever had a veil lifting moment about me.

And then I came home, to North Carolina, and it was actually coming home.  Which is disorienting, but a relief at least, that it turns out I made the right decision. The first trip back to the city of your birth is always a test. 

Whenever I think about Austin renting a car and driving all the way down to North Carolina to come get me and take me home, I feel so incredibly loved. Austin, Scott, Jere, Lou, Don, Ramon, David, Sean, Peter, I know all the best boys.


  1. The chance to get to experience Bridget Callahan in an overcrowded, PBR bathed, hotdog vendor cart listening to some of the best "sextexts" ever..even for just a couple of hours was a wonderful moment in time. <3 Not to mention the tater tots are fuck-worthy yummy.

  2. I hate that you had to "experience" me instead of getting to have actual conversation with me :(


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