I’ve been kidnapped to happiness. I’ve been away from my house for the better part of the past three weeks, taken hither and thither by the terrible twosome that now rule my life.

Mother is being an almighty pain in the ass. I really don’t need to be treated like a child when I’m 23, living on my own, and supporting myself. I’m sorry that I’m not at the place that saintly brother was when he was 23 but he’s always been special now, hasn’t he?

I want to be fucking special for once.

I don’t mean that men are things. They’re not. They’re fully functioning human beings (at least most of the time). I even kind of like them quite a bit. My best friend is a man. My brother is probably one of the best men I’ve ever met. It’s a good time. But lately I’ve been thinking that the prospect of getting a man is rather tiresome.

It seems that in the time that Jane Austen was writing I would have had it a lot easier. I’m a fairly good prospect in her termsa and I could have done well. I could have a nice husband, a nice home (maybe two), and some cute little children. I may live in London and wafting through the whims of society or amidst the beauty of the country.

Either way, I have to believe it would have been a lot easier to find someone who wants to love me. Maybe it wouldn’t be real love. Who knows. Maybe I would actually find my Mr. Darcy.

At the moment, I just hope that my Mr. Right Now can see me as his Elizabeth Bennet.

Why are these three hardest words in the English language for me to say?

Damned if I could tell you. I could list off years of experience and past horrors that would make a pretty convicing argument, but I don’t really believe that myself, do I?

I’m going to have to say it real soon. The words are going to have to spill out of my mouth into the unbelievable chasm between me and you. It’s funny that I can use poetry to describe our situation, write you a book on the mysteries of love and yet the one thing I can’t do is say the words.

They’ve become this mythic quest that is going to lead me to being a nervous wreck if I don’t sit down and start makin’ plans to be happy. I want to be happy. I really do. I want to know what it feels like. I don’t want to have to walk around thinking everything’s so goddamn hard.

Cuz it is. But a lot of the time it’s not. I’ve learned so many ways in which things are ok.

So I think I’m going to try this brave thing out. Cuz to be fair, the pansy ass crap hasn’t worked at all.

It’s been a weird sort of week. The terrible twosome have gotten me addicted to DOTA, I’ve had a snow day and I think I may be falling into stupid.

Nothing feels like it should…if that makes any sense. I’ve always been fairly good at rejecting happiness. It’s not that I don’t want to be happy. It’s just that I don’t really know how to be. I was miserable for the vast majority of my teenage years and somehow I think it’s going to take more than a few years to get over it. How do you write over a decade’s worth of distrust and pain? How do you recode your DNA to not be one that immediately runs away when something good happens?

I’ve spent so much time running away from myself. I get afraid even to think that something good might be happening. I can’t let it happen. I have to analyze and prevariacate and generally be worried about everything. Even when my lovely friends try to beat it out of me I worry like a little girl. And to be fair, what good does it do me? Am I winning anything by being constantly, endlessly mad at the world? Isn’t there a point at which you just have to say, STOP!

I don’t think I can fix this is in a week or a day or a month or a year. I think it’s going to be slow and exhausting and I’m not going to get what I truly deserve until I decide to change. I want to decide. I’ve tried over and over again. But how do you unwrite what’s happened? How do you not predict the future from what came before? Can you? Should you even try?

So I’m a little introspective, hmm? I don’t even know if that’s a good thing anymore.

:(

I’m over halfway through The Host and I’m more in love with this book than I have been with a book in a very long time. On the surface it’s a lot like an adult version of the Twilight Series. It is in the most plain way about the interaction between species and good and evil and many other confusing things. But it is more different from those books than Huck Finn is different from it. 

What I’m struck the most by in this book is that there is a complete lack of black and white in this book. It’s about two species, one ostensibly good and one ostensibly bad and yet both is good and bad. It’s about good vs. bad vs. good vs. bad. It’s the unbelievable gray area in which we are all lost all the time. 

I think that’s why it’s one of the best character studies I’ve read in a long time. It takes you to the edge of certainty, the knowledge that one way is correct and then slams you back in the opposite direction without a second thought. Characters that are filled with hate are given second chances by those they plague and the good are made to suffer for those that they are most like. It’s a moral battle on an epic scale. I can’t wait to finish it, to see how it resolves. It is a glorious tale.

Apologies for the lack of posting of late. I’ve been in hibernation on vacation and my reading has been lulled. I will have much to write about in the near future. I’m in the midst of The Host, by Stephanie Meyer. Can I just say that whatever you have to say about the Twilight series, you should read this book? It’s heart-stoppingly good.

I saw Matt Weiland last night speaking about the new book he co-edited with Sean Wilsey, State by State. The book is inspired by the WPA Guides that grew out of the Federal Writers’ Project in the 1930s. The edited volume features one essay for each state, written by a mix of state natives, state transplants, and correspondents tasked to explore a state. 

I’m about 1/10 of the way through the book and I’ve already concluded that it’s of the same unbelievably amazing quality as the two’s previous volume The Thinking Fan’s Guide to the World Cup. Weiland and Wilsey are absolute geniuses who seem great at exploring issues that are near and dear to my heart and yet unbelievably ambiguous. 

The event last night featured three of the writers from the book including Weiland. Alison Bechdel, one of the preeminent graphic novelists in the country, gave a presentation of her piece from the book and Joshua Clark, who has lived in New Orleans for 10 years and authored the piece on Louisiana, gave a short but chilling reading from his piece about ghost hunting in the ninth ward of New Orleans after Katrina. 

All in all it was a fabulous event on a fabulous book. Powell’s Book presented their third “Out of the Book” film to go along with the book, screened in one day with seventeen of the writers and both editors in New York. 

If you have a chance, read this book. Some of the greatest literary minds of the generation have contributed pieces and some more of those writers you may not have heard of but that shine bright with their intimate glimpses into those bizarre constructs of America, the 50 states.

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