Dating Mr. Disappointment

Expectations lead to disappointments, so I’ve decided that there’s no point in looking forward to anything anymore, especially when it comes to the world of dating. I have pretty much had it with broken promises and being stood up. This also comes from friends that make plans and cancel at the last minute or don’t bother to show up. How inconsiderate of someone else’s time! So I have stopped making plans with anyone in my life that does this to me.

Recently, someone that lives a distance from me that I’d been very interested (and hopeful) in meeting came onto me very strong. It was flattering, and we tried to plan a week to meet up. Supposedly, his work or something got in the way of things that week, so I offered to meet him at the halfway point across the state at a yearly event I thought we’d both enjoy. I had free tickets, and he agreed to meet me. A few days later, he suddenly wasn’t sure if he’d be able to meet. And then he just blew me off altogether, so I ended up telling him I’d find someone else to go with, because I don’t need bullshit in my life. I haven’t heard from him since, and he’s even stopped liking my Facebook and Instagram posts.

On the day we were supposed to meet and do some fun activities, he posted something on Facebook about having mimosas with people. Nice. Now I will be sure to remove him from my social media. Perhaps I will tag him on this post so he knows how I really feel.

If someone can’t meet me halfway, then fuck ’em. I’m not going out of my way for a man that clearly doesn’t know how to make a commitment and just gets my hopes up only to be let down in a big way. Not only do I not have time for that crap, I don’t deserve it.

The Worst Kayaking Date

Prior to my last post, I met a guy at the beach while looking for seaglass. He was my age, had grown kids, and liked to make creative things, so I felt we might have some common ground. We spoke about kayaking and made a date to do it the following week.

When the day finally arrived, he couldn’t get the kayak on his car, and he canceled at the last minute, so I decided I’d just go to the beach instead. I was a little frustrated with his lack of communication and planning. Then about an hour later he said he was on his way. I was confused as to what he was talking about since everything was by text, and his communication was unclear. He’d borrowed a truck to take the kayak. He had to come to my house to pick up my kayak, but asked me to drive my own car, because the truck was literally full of garbage and didn’t have enough room for me.

We launched at a place near my house, found an island to eat lunch and listen to music. At some point he made it clear he wanted to have sex with me, but that wasn’t going to happen. I mean, we hadn’t even kissed, and he was just being… well, weird. He decided he wanted to leave the island shortly after. I had to pee in the woods before loading up, and when I came back out, he was gone. He totally left me, and even by the time I rounded the corner, he was clear out of sight. So he must have really been hauling ass. By the time I paddled back to the launch area, his truck was gone. I wasn’t sure how in the hell I was getting my kayak back to the house, so I just paddled to a nearby sandbar and slammed a few beers while figuring out what to do.

Then he texted me. Said someone stole his kayak. I said well that sucks, but thinking this is karma for ditching me. I tried to ask what happened, where was he when it happened, because his truck was gone by the time I came back. He said he went to use the bathroom, and when he came out it was gone. I suggested making a police report, but I don’t think he ever did. I managed to shove my kayak into my car and hoped I made it home safely.

The following day, he started sending me text messages accusing me of stealing his kayak. I literally laughed out loud, and said with what, my magical powers? I reminded him I was still paddling and he’d left me on the island. He tried calling me, but I was driving and let it go to voicemail. He was still accusing me of stealing his kayak. I couldn’t understand why in the hell he could even think it was possible. Then he said he had my neighbors check their video surveillance and a car that looked like mine had a green kayak like his hanging out of it. I said good luck with that, but I have no reason to steal your cheap kayak and could barely get my own kayak home. Besides, why would I suggest filing a police report if I stole the damn thing? I realized he was total batshit crazy.

He didn’t stop with the accusations. He even went as far to suggest I planned to steal it by having someone else do it. I said that’s ridiculous, and I’m not going to argue anymore so don’t contact me again. He kept contacting me and I eventually blocked him. Thankfully, I never ran into him again!

The Most Boring Kayaking Date

Sometime last year, prior to meeting Orange Crush, I met someone that lived a few streets from me. I wasn’t sure if it was a good idea or not to try to date someone so close, but it sure made it convenient. We only saw each other a few times anyway. He was too young for me and incredibly boring. After the second meet up, I didn’t hear from him for about a month. When I did hear from him, he told me he had an extra spot open for someone to go on a kayaking trip with him to Marco Island… and everything was paid for. I didn’t ask too many questions about details, but it sounded like it might be fun. (At this point, I had been on two dates with OC.)

Since he said he had “an extra spot,” I had assumed there would be other people going. It wasn’t until the drive there that I learned we would be the only two on the trip. Of course, I had to ask the details of why there was this extra spot. It turns out he was actually dating someone that he had previously told me were only friends, but it was short lived, and they broke up. Interesting, I thought.

The 7-hour drive mostly consisted of catching up, with me asking most of the questions and initiating conversation. It was also seven hours of listening to country music, because he didn’t seem to like anything else. Now, don’t get me wrong – I like country music, but not for seven freaking hours. The only music that played that I really liked was Chris Stapleton. I was going to scream if I heard “Buy Me a Boat” for the umpteenth time.

The trip went nothing like I’d expected or hoped. The first evening was fine, and he was on his best behavior, but that changed the following day. Between the weather and him having us do all of the things he wanted to do, I didn’t get to experience kayaking to an island or somewhere that we’d talked about. Then he began doing some things that really pissed me off – just immature, rude things. For example, we had to put our kayaks in from a dock during low tide, so it was difficult to maneuver without tipping over. He helped put them in the water, I helped hold his kayak so he could get in. But when it was my turn to get in, he thought it was okay to paddle away from me and leave me struggling to get in on my own. I thought that was a dick move.

When we got back, we’d planned to find a place to eat. But he was also acting very strange and played on his phone – on Bumble, no less! He said he was trying to find someone else to hang out with us (another female), and I thought that was incredibly rude. When we went out to eat, he sat in the front of the Uber we called. Another dick move.

At that point, I felt pretty trapped. I was 3 hours away from my closest relatives and 7 from my own home. I just wanted to leave. I ended up paying for my own dinner that night, because I wanted nothing more from this asshole, and he’d already made some snide comments about paying for something. And then he asked me to pay for the Uber ride back – and again sat in the front seat! We’d discussed doing something after dinner, because it was still early, but when we got back to the room, he’d changed his mind. He was still playing on Bumble, and I guess maybe he got mad that someone he was talking to didn’t want to meet. By then, I’d had enough of his bullshit, and I asked him why in the hell did he even invite me if he’s trying to hook up with other women and act like a dick to me. I left to walk down to a bar around the corner. I was gone for a few hours, and he started texting me all concerned and apologizing.

When I got back to the room, he spent the rest of the night playing on his phone. The next morning, he’d planned an offshore fishing trip in which I was super glad I didn’t go, because they got back late, he caught nothing, and it was chilly that day – plus there was no canopy on the tiny boat. We had to leave that afternoon, and I couldn’t wait. It was mainly seven excruciating hours of listening to country music and silence. After he dropped me off, he hugged me, I thanked him, and we never contacted each other again. That evening, I had my third date with OC.

Dating Mr. Mixed Messages – the Final Rose?

After watching last night’s episode of The Bachelor and seeing two women get their hearts broken after being told by Arie over and over again how much he is in love with them (at the same time), I realize if you give a man too many choices, he can’t make up his fucking mind. Newsflash: Women are not menu options.

A few months ago I met someone through friends. It was the first time I’d even considered dating anyone after Orange Crush, so it was a big deal for me to open myself up to someone and be seen in public on an actual date. I wasn’t sure at first how it would go, because of being so doubtful about relationships, so I kept my safe distance. On two separate occasions, once after a two-week separation from him being out of town, Mr. Mixed Messages told me he had missed me. I was surprised to hear it coming from him, because I wasn’t sure how he felt about me, and I didn’t think he was that into me.

Mr. Mixed Messages and I had the rare opportunity (due to his obligations) to spend some quality time together over a weekend. We had a great time going out for dinner and drinks, watching bands, playing games with friends, and snuggling in the cold weather. We had some intimate talks and moments that I thought made us closer. For the first time since Orange Crush, I was excited to finally move onto someone else and, well, crush those feelings for OC. I could see that I could easily develop feelings for Mr. Mixed Messages and eventually maybe even love again in time. But as he was leaving that weekend, I didn’t know if he just wasn’t feeling well (he had a bad cold) or if he had changed his mind about me. I asked him when I’d see him again, and he said the following day. But I had a hunch that may not happen.

Then I did something stupid. I had a few too many beers and got emotional and sent Mr. Mixed Messages some mushy text messages relaying my feelings. Normally, I would never do that, because it was too soon, BUT it was my true and honest feelings. Besides, after Orange Crush, I had decided I wasn’t going to waste time holding back on how I felt only to have the rug ripped from under me again. I don’t regret sending those messages, but I think Mr. Mixed Messages took it the wrong way.

Instead of waiting to hear from him, I texted Mr. Mixed Messages some casual chat the following day and apologized for the beer-induced mush from the night before. He said he would talk to me later. Later came along and I didn’t hear from him. I tried some casual chat throughout the day, but I felt as if he was blowing me off. I wanted to know NOW if he was, because I certainly wasn’t going to waste anymore time, and I refuse to chase after a man. I never did see him that evening, so again I asked, when am I going to see you again? He said Wednesday, which was two days later. I decided to leave him alone and see what happens, give him some space.

So what happened? Nothing. I never heard back from him. Clearly, he wasn’t into me as he acted or told me that weekend. I figured if he wanted to see me, he’d make the effort to at least keep in touch.

I saw Mr. Mixed Messages at a place we both frequent, and he ignored me. I wasn’t about to put myself out there to make the first move only to be rejected. After all, he’s the one that stopped contact. Then I saw Mr. Mixed Messages a couple more times the following week. On these two occasions something really fucked up happened. He said hello to my friends sitting right next to me, hugged them, looked me right in the face, and said nothing. Yes, that’s right. Nothing. Everyone around that witnessed it thought it was a dick move, and no one could understand what the hell his problem was, because I had done nothing wrong. It felt cruel and undeserved, so I let him know in a text, asking him what the hell was his problem and what did I do to deserve that. He ended up turning the whole thing around on me saying I’m the one that didn’t contact him, that he sent the last text – and he sent me a screenshot of him saying “Wednesday,” that it takes two, he didn’t want a relationship, and to basically have a nice life. Wow.

So not only did Mr. Mixed Messages send mixed messages, he wasn’t even man enough to speak to me like an adult, playing games like a middle school girl. I reminded him that if he didn’t want a relationship, he should never have pursued me and led me on, and I don’t chase after men that clearly aren’t interested in me. Since, I have yet to revisit one of my favorite places, because I don’t want to see his face anymore. It’s obvious to me now that he has some pretty big issues to be such a jerk. Not someone I need in my life.

A Gift with a Catch

It’s been years since I’ve received a gift from the opposite sex. I believe the last time I did was when Dodger gave me the Sorry/Valentine roses. But when I do receive something from a man, I would rather it be from someone that I’m close to and in an actual relationship with. Or if it’s a special occasion, then that’s acceptable.

While I was working yesterday, I received a phone call from a local florist that there was a delivery for me. I was confused, and I actually thought for a minute as to whether or not it was my birthday. I realized that’s not for another six months. So what was this delivery all about?

I asked the guy on the phone what was being delivered. He said a dozen beautiful roses. I said I have no idea who would send me that and asked if he could tell me who it was from. He read the note and said the name. At first I thought they got the name wrong, as I have been talking to someone recently with a similar name but never expected roses. Had it been from that person, then it would have been acceptable, because we’ve developed a friendship.

When I returned home, I read the card, and the name of the person who sent it still confused me. I only know one person by that name, and he fixed the brakes on my car (I paid him), but there was no way he could know where I live, so I asked a mutual acquaintance if she had given him my address. I didn’t think she would do that anyway, but I had to ask. She hadn’t. So I had to text this guy to ask if he sent something to my house. Yes, it was him. Not only was it a disappointment knowing it was from this guy and not someone that I had an actual friendship with, it felt creepy.

I asked how he got my address. It was on the packing slip of the brake parts I had ordered. I messaged our mutual friend what happened, and I guess she went off on him. Then he started sending me text messages that he was pissed I told her, that he doesn’t want her knowing what he does. Blah blah blah. Too fucking bad.

He had already asked me out earlier in the week, and I made it very clear I’m not interested in anything with him. We really don’t know each other, and he’s way too old for me. I actually busted out crying, because I felt this was a complete violation on his part to send something to my home. And did I mention I clearly told him I’m not interested? He’s not someone I’d ever date, and I’ve already been warned about him doing creepy shit like this. I just didn’t think it would happen, as I’ve kept my distance.

This morning he sent me a text with a picture of the packing slip that had my address on it. What is the point of that? I’m ignoring him.

After the 2am rude awakening from last week, this set me over the edge. I don’t understand why men think the way they do or why they think it’s okay to cross boundaries. It’s just fucking creepy.

Rude Awakening

I often wonder what the hell goes through people’s heads. The stupid or bizarre things I’ve come across seem endless. The older I get, the less my tolerance is for bullshit. The older I get, the more clearly I can see how selfish and self-centered some people are, only interested in their own benefit without a care in the world how they make other people feel.

The other night (a weeknight, no less) I happened to be awake around 2am. I think I hear a knock on my door. I look out my kitchen window and see a male figure but can’t make it out. I ask who it is and what they want. He says a name I didn’t recognize and was looking for me.

I said, “I don’t know anyone by that name, and I don’t know who sent you here or what the hell you’re doing here, but it’s 2am, and you need to get the fuck out of here right now and don’t ever come back!”

He practically ran down the driveway. It was when he pulled out that I recognized the truck and who it was. It turns out that I did know this person, but I hadn’t seen or heard from him in at least a year! I had forgotten all about him. And it was very unlike him to do something like that, since it had never happened before.

I couldn’t believe the nerve of this asshole coming to my house in the middle of the night after a year of no contact. I mean, did he actually think I’d let him in? I was a little creeped out by the whole thing. I didn’t feel threatened, but how do I know this person hadn’t gone down the wrong path, especially since his behavior seemed out of the ordinary? Something is seriously wrong with someone who does that. I don’t need that kind of b.s. in my life.

Then Someone Talked Me Into Tinder…

When I initially started Tinder swiping, I had no idea what I was doing, so I swiped left on everyone. Also, my settings were for such a wide mileage and age range, I was getting people from their 20s to 50s, most of them too far away. Then I started over, because I finally figured out how to work the app. I met a few people that never lasted more than one meet up. Usually, they were too immature or not who they claimed to be.

The first guy I met from Tinder was close to my age, claimed to be 5’10” in his profile. He was a serial vaper, held no conversation whatsoever, and didn’t even offer to pay for my bottled water at the place we met. He seemed more into his obnoxious vaping and himself than anything else. Truly a boring experience! As we left the place, when he stood up, he was much closer to my own height of 5’4”, which made him a liar, too. Neither of us contacted the other again, and I never saw him again. No loss there.

Another guy was maybe 5 years younger, former military, and talked a lot about himself. We saw each other a few times until I realized he was batshit crazy and a player. He’s been in a long-term relationship since.

There was one Tinder date that led to more dates, and he was much younger than me… by like 15 years. He was former military, tattooed, and bearded… and extremely short. Like my height. We had a nice time together until he was extremely late (45 minutes to an hour) meeting up more than once or just blew me off altogether. I’d had enough of him wasting my time and told him so. It turned out he’d met someone else and didn’t have the balls to tell me. But this guy kept in touch with me, I suppose “just in case”, because he contacted me again after they’d broken up until he moved onto the next girlfriend that he’s currently with.

I had my fair share of younger guys wanting to date me. Why not give them a chance, I thought? I mean, if Demi Moore and Madonna can do it, why can’t I? After all, I certainly wasn’t looking to get married again, and I needed to have fun. Plus, they made me feel young and wanted again. It was kind of a refreshing self-esteem booster after having been crushed and feeling unattractive. But that didn’t last long either, because I was done raising children. Yes, these guys in their 20s were fun, but that was it. They could offer me nothing. They were takers, not givers. At that point, I was done with Tinder, because it seemed like there was no one my age using it at the time.

And then some girlfriends introduced me to someone unexpectedly… to be continued.

Life: Twists, Turns, and Trainwrecks

Defeated Life has been a complete toss of a train wreck and roller coaster over the past few years. Many life changes have happened at once, many of which I had no control over. I have moved six times in three years, got divorced, had some pretty horrible dating experiences, lost two jobs as a result of downsizing (which also resulted in a piling amount of debt), changed careers, and I’ve been dealing with illnesses and fibromyalgia flare-ups for the first time in many years. On top of emotional aches and pains, the physical pain has taken its toll on me both mentally and physically. Taking two stress tests revealed a score of 594, with over 300 being on the high end. As you can imagine, I’ve become extremely depressed and hopeless.

I’ve done little writing the way I used to, except for some poetry here and there. I’ve stopped doing many of the things I used to enjoy, either out of boredom or time restraints or lack of funds. Or sometimes just loss of interest altogether. I feel as if I’ve lost in the game of life. Many times I think what is the point of this?

Last night I came to the conclusion that sometimes the game of life isn’t made to win; often, it is made to be defeated, no matter what you do to try to make things better. How did I come to this conclusion? By playing a video game that I know is always intended for the game to win. Only by luck or by chance can it be beat. And in life, sometimes luck and chance is the only thing we have by our side; others are just made to sit and suffer along the sidelines, only wishing we can make our dreams come true.

For weeks, I tried to get through not just one but two different (but similar games) without any luck. I grew frustrated and bored, because no matter what I did, the end result was always the same. No matter how I carefully made my next move, I was beat. In fact, no matter what I did to “get ahead” in the actual game, without even knowing it, I was somehow setting up the game itself for an even bigger win. Why does this keep happening to me? I thought. To make matters worse, the game would remind me that I had failed to succeed in beating it. No shit. What a negative way to announce something to someone that’s already fighting depression, I thought. This game sucks, I kept repeating to myself. But I knew I had to keep playing.

Failure. Defeat. That is exactly how I’ve been feeling about life.

For. Three. Fucking. Years. Straight.

Three years of feeling this way is a really awful way to live. I have talked to some of my friends about everything, but I’m sure they’re tired of hearing it, so I have mostly stopped and keep to myself. Talking to a professional seems to be a waste of time, since I want to talk to someone at a certain moment, not wait for an appointment weeks later when I may already be doing something that makes me feel better for free. I don’t think I need to be medicated, like a lot of people who jump to conclusions might suggest. I just wish for things to happen in my benefit for once, to make my life easier and more enjoyable… to feel better, to wake up in the morning and actually feel like getting out of bed to seize the day. But that hasn’t happened in a very long time.

I find it difficult to get excited about anything at all anymore until it actually happens, even if it’s a simple meeting with friends. There are just certain things in life I’d always dreamed of and it just doesn’t happen, no matter how hard I work or the many directions I take. Just when I get my hopes up about anything, they get dashed right back down… as if I’m put into my place by the universe saying, who do you think you are? You’re not going anywhere. You’re no one special.

I watch others’ dreams come true without even trying, which often pisses me off and makes me realize the game of life is all about luck and chance. I suppose I will just have to accept I’m not one of those people. I know I can’t be alone in feeling this way. I know many people in worse circumstances. But right now I’m just living in my own head and dealing with my own misery and pain, the only way I know how to live anymore.

How I Lost My Virginity

This is probably going to be somewhat disturbing to some readers, so this is fair warning.

When I was 16, I worked with a guy that went to my school. For about a year he begged me to date him, but I wasn’t interested. Eventually, I gave in to him and he was my “first love” so to speak. He had a car, so we’d sneak off and park in wooded areas or parks to make out and have sex.

One night when I was babysitting he came to the house. We were on the living room floor (the person I was babysitting for was in her room asleep by then) making out. He was acting like an asshole, which was typical of him anyway, but here’s where this gets disturbing… All of the times I thought we were having sex, he wasn’t actually inside of me. I think maybe the tip was, but he’d never actually put himself entirely inside of me. I was that naive and inexperienced. I was on top of him, but he was much stronger than me. He held me against him and shoved himself inside of me without warning. It was excruciating!! I tried to get off of him, but he held me tightly against him. I told him he was hurting me, but he didn’t care. I told him to stop, but he wouldn’t. I didn’t want to scream or wake up anyone, so I bit him on the shoulder, because it was the only thing to make him stop. Then he hit me and called me a bitch.

I was so confused. Here I was with this person that I “loved” that didn’t care he was hurting me. I didn’t know at the time whether or not to consider that this was on the cusp of being raped.

I didn’t stay with him much longer after that – he ended up cheating on me and physically abusing her.

 

Taking a new turn – a brain dump and secrets

originalI have decided that relationships are not for me. I can either have a career or a relationship, but not both. When I put my all into something, it’s 100%. I cannot juggle both things and make everyone happy. Not even myself, because at some point my passion is being extinguished by the demands of domestication.

The last time I gave up my income/job/career over a relationship (marriage), I ended up screwing myself. Big time. I can never allow myself to do that again. And now I am starting over – again. Quite frankly, I have grown tired of starting over. The instability is tiring.

Yesterday was the first day I sat down and wrote – something I hadn’t done in quite some time. Pages and pages of handwritten shit flying out of my mind onto yellow lined paper. Poetry, prose, thoughts. I guess you could say my brain took a dump – lots of shit was piled up inside my head… shit that I didn’t even know was there. I had pent up my feelings to no avail for going on close to two years.

How did I manage to last this long? Alcohol. Lots and lots of it. And no, I’m not proud. I have secrets. Lots and lots of them. Only a few select friends that understand me know about them.

My writing is taking a new turn – more for adults at this point. I have lots and lots of things to share that I wouldn’t normally dare to share with anyone… all about relationships and sex. Sordid details. Stay tuned.

 

 

Excerpt from Unheard: a Memoir – Chapter 8

Excerpt from Unheard: a Memoir – Chapter 8 – told from a child’s point of view

Even though the visits become less frequent, I look forward to visiting Daddy, and I have already forgiven Bianca for butchering my hair. Their house is always warm and cozy. Bianca has down comforters and nice pillows and warm beds, and they have a warm fireplace for the winter, air conditioning for the hot months, and things that I’m not used to having. I am even allowed to take hot baths and sit in the tub for as long as I want!

I have wanted to shave my legs since fifth grade, because my friends are already shaving and making fun of me. Mom says I have to wait until I’m thirteen, but when I speak to Bianca about it, she gives me a razor and tells me to go at it. It must have taken me an hour or more, and I cut myself a few times, but I am grateful to be able to do at least one thing all of my friends are doing. Plus, I don’t have boy legs anymore.

By the middle of the summer between sixth and seventh grades, I decide that I want to live with Daddy and Bianca. They convince me that living with them will be better than living with Marcus and his drinking and drug habits.

I agree, but know that I will miss Mom. I hate the thought of leaving the babies and her alone with Marcus. What if something happens and she needs me? I hesitate calling Mom on the phone because I fear her reaction.

“I don’t want to tell her,” I say to Dad and Bianca.

“You’re the one that has to tell her, not us,” Bianca says.

I pick up the phone. Mom answers. I’m crying.

“What’s wrong?” she asks.

“I don’t want to come home,” I say. “I want to stay here.”

I can tell she isn’t happy. But I also know that I might be in trouble if I do decide to go back home.

“Why don’t you come home and we’ll talk about it?” she says, but I feel that it is more than a suggestion.

My stomach knots. I can barely swallow. My heart races. I am scared to death and know I cannot turn back now. I cry harder. Daddy takes the phone from me. Bianca hugs me and says everything is going to be all right.

All I have to do is go back there to pack.

UNHEARD: a memoir Now Available on Amazon and Barnes and Noble!

Excerpt from Unheard: a Memoir – Chapter 7

Excerpt from Unheard: a Memoir – Chapter 7 – told from a child’s point of view

Marcus makes up lies about everything. At first Mom doesn’t believe him, but he has a way of manipulating and convincing her that the sky is green, even though it’s blue. If she doesn’t believe him, they fight all night. It is a never-ending battle with him.

“See? See? That kid is making us fight again!” he tells her.

When I was eight years old, Marcus accused me of calling him a son of a bitch, which was a lie. He claimed he’d heard me say it when he was in his garbage truck one day when I was on my way to school with Rebekah. Passing him on our bikes and waving, we yelled, “Hi Marcus!”

But he ignored us. Instead, when I got home from school he claimed that one of the guys on the truck heard me call him a son of a bitch. No matter how much I swore that I never said that, and his story changed from one of the guys hearing it to hearing it himself, I was still in trouble. It didn’t matter what the truth was.

The truth was this: I hadn’t called him a son of a bitch at all; I actually called him an asshole, and it was under my breath so that no one could hear me. But I wasn’t about to tell him that.

* * * * *

I walk in from school and go to my room. I notice something on my bed – on my pillow. A gift? I am excited until I realize what it is.

“What is that on my pillow!?” I storm out of my room, down the steps.

I look at Mom.

“What’s on your pillow?” She is clueless.

“There’s a maxi pad on my pillow!” I yell.

Mom thinks it’s a joke, looks at Marcus.

“Did you put a pad on her pillow, Marcus?” Mom asks, puzzled.

“You left it on the bathroom floor. I stepped on it and blood came gushing out,” he lies. “I almost got sick.”

“You’re a liar!” I scream. “A big, disgusting liar! I hate you!”

I storm back to my room. He is the biggest liar I’ve ever known. There is no blood on it at all, but it doesn’t matter what the truth is even if the evidence is in plain view. I don’t think Mom believes him, either, because she knows I am not on my period. But instead of speaking up to him, she tells me not to worry about it.

unheardcover

Excerpt from Unheard: a Memoir – Chapter 6

Excerpt from Unheard: a Memoir – Chapter 6 – told from a child’s point of view

Other family gatherings involve being with Marcus’s weird family. His father (whom Mom secretly calls Hitler because he is a tyrant and has a dark mustache) refers to all children as “rotten little kids”. I am no exception, but the name-calling doesn’t end there. Marcus’s obedient mother, Rose, is nice most of the time and tries to keep the kids as far from her husband as possible – and he sees to it she does just that.

Just because it’s a holiday doesn’t exempt them from being freaks. Marcus still refers to me as “The Monster,” particularly in front of his own family members, as if to impress them. They laugh and joke about calling me names; even when the babies were born everyone laughed and said they looked like aliens. I guess they think it’s okay and normal to make fun of people, especially small children. Sometimes Mom secretly looks at me and rolls her eyes, because she knows they are stupid and immature. Mom never really says anything, though. I think she’s afraid, so she pretends to laugh along with them. Rose does the same. I hate being around them.

Hitler has never been nice – never one kind word or gesture – nor does he ever speak to me except to bark out a command or an insult. Because he wears dark eyeglasses that hide his eyes, no one knows what he is looking at. Hitler served time in a Florida prison for embezzling money when he worked for the city. On top of that, he is weird and creepy and always stinks because he doesn’t wear deodorant. He isn’t very nice to the babies, either. When we moved out of their trailer and into the new ugly house, Mom discovered a peephole in the bedroom wall. Hitler had been secretly watching her.

Marcus’s younger brother, Melvin, is the only one in their family who is remotely nice to me. He flirts with me, and everyone else seems to think it’s cute and funny – even though I am only in sixth grade. I think it’s weird. Melvin is married to a teenaged girl from his high school. They’re going to have a baby together. Melvin also went to jail for tying up and having sex with a girl the same age as me.

Marcus’s older brother, Arthur, is just as weird as the rest of them. Most of the time he keeps quiet, but when he speaks he says stupid things. And he smells like a troll. Every time Arthur holds the babies under his arms, Mom has to wash their heads because their uncle does not wear deodorant. No wonder he never has a girlfriend.

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Excerpt from Unheard: a Memoir – Chapter 5

Excerpt from Unheard: a Memoir – Chapter 5 – told from a child’s point of view

Bianca has a way of making everyone believe her. She says she always cuts Daddy’s hair and her own, so I agree to let her cut mine after church. I look in the mirror a few times while she works on it, but I don’t like what I see. I think maybe she can fix it and allow her to keep cutting. But when I look in the mirror for the last time, I see that my beautiful, healthy, long dark hair has gone from being about eight inches below my shoulders to a shaggy, cropped mullet. I start crying, put on a painter’s hat, and run out the front door. At first I don’t know where I am going. Since it is only about two miles up the road, I decide to walk to Grandmaw’s.

The first person I see is Aunt Jackie.

“Oh hi, Susanna,” Aunt Jackie says. “I didn’t know that was you. I thought it was a boy walking down the road.”

I cry harder. I know Aunt Jackie doesn’t mean to hurt my feelings, but what she said is true. I do look like a boy. She hugs me, goes inside and tells Grandmaw about it.

“Why did she do that to your pretty hair, honey?” Grandmaw seems sad.

“She said she could cut it like I wanted it,” I tell her.

Uncle Charlie is shaking his head.

“That old bar whore can’t cut hair! She ain’t never went to school for that,” he speaks very loudly.

Grandmaw calls Daddy to come get me. Bianca gives him my things and makes Daddy drive me home alone.

“Your hair doesn’t look that bad,” he tells me.

I keep quiet the whole ride home. Mom is standing outside when we pull up to the house. I say goodbye to Daddy and he leaves.

“What did you do to your hair?” she looks horrified.

“Bianca cut it.”

“I don’t like it,” she frowns. “She should have left your hair alone. Why did you let her do it?”

“I don’t know,” I cry. “She told me she could cut hair. I thought she knew what she was doing.”

“She cuts your father’s hair and look at his!” She is mad. “She doesn’t know what she’s doing! That bitch!”

Mom stomps off to call Bianca and give her a piece of her mind, which usually means saying a few four letter words and mentioning Jesus Christ or God’s hamlet, even though I don’t think they have anything to do with it.

I want to go to school tomorrow, except that I don’t want anyone to see my hair. I pick at my arms, pondering what to do about it and decide that putting it up in pigtails will be the easiest way to hide the awful cut.

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Excerpt from Unheard: a Memoir – Chapter 4

Excerpt from Unheard: a Memoir – told from a child’s point of view

I liked visiting Nana, but I didn’t like Grampa because he was grouchy and said weird things and repeated himself. Every time I saw him, his funny white fuzzy hair on top of his head looked like he just woke up. He wore plaid shorts and either a white t-shirt or a button up collared shirt if he were going somewhere, and he always had a glass of beer in his hand. I don’t think he liked kids much, either, because he yelled at me a lot.

“He’s a drunken jerk,” Gramma said.

He wasn’t her real father. She never knew her real father.

On our way back from Nana’s, Gramma took me to visit my Great Aunt Gabby. She owned a neurotic poodle that always jumped up and scratched my legs, barked incessantly, and peed on the floor. She was a very intelligent woman that enjoyed crossword puzzles and playing her piano, but she was always nervous and she seemed to shake a lot. Gramma said Aunt Gabby never left the house after dark because she was afraid of getting raped.

Aunt Gabby seemed very tall compared to Gramma, and she always wore white flat old lady shoes and flowery dresses that looked like nightgowns. I thought she might be pregnant because her belly stuck out even though she was skinny everywhere else.

“Is Aunt Gabby going to have a baby?” I asked Gramma.

Gramma laughed, “Noooo….”

“Why does her belly stick out like that?”

“That’s what happens when you get old.”

I overheard that one time Aunt Gabby had a baby and lost it, and I figured maybe that was why her belly still stuck out. It was lost somewhere in her belly.

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Excerpt from Unheard: a Memoir – Chapter 3

Excerpt from Unheard: a Memoir – as told from a child’s point of view:

Grandmaw got Daddy to go to a big church called Calvary where Aunt Marylou went, and he became born again. That meant that he loved Jesus, who was the only person to show him how Daddy was getting to Heaven. They told me I should be born again too, but I decided that I would be baptized with the Holy Spirit. The spirit part scared me, because I thought that God’s son was a ghost. One night I was baptized in a big bathtub at the big Calvary church in front of a big audience. That’s when they handed me a microphone and I told them I love Jesus, even though I wasn’t sure I trusted Him, because I was afraid that I wouldn’t go to Heaven with the rest of my family if I didn’t do exactly as He said in the Bible. I think that water must have been dirty because I got sick a few days later. Maybe it was because my sins were still washing away.

I wasn’t sure I liked the Calvary church because it was boring and they made us read like they did in school instead of color and do crafts like some of the other churches we went to. Besides, they made me feel stupid when I didn’t know what some of the Bible meant.

I stopped liking the Sunday school after they asked us what we knew about Abraham. I raised my hand. I knew all about Abraham from school.

“Abraham was the sixteenth president of the United States!” I proudly announced.

“No,” the teacher scrunched up his face. “We’re talking about Abraham from the Bible.”

I guess he thought I was a dumb kid because he never called on me again. I liked the story about the president Abraham better anyway because he freed the slaves.

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Excerpt from Unheard: A Memoir – Chapter 2

Excerpt from Unheard: a Memoir – as told from a childhood point of view…

I had a lot of friends near my house. Jessica and Sammy lived with their mom a few streets away in an apartment just like ours, but theirs was dirty and had fleas. Mommy said they were nice girls but dirty kids. They said that their mom left their dad a long time ago, because he beat her up. Sammy was Jessica’s older sister; she talked a lot and told us jokes with a lot of bad words in them. Their mom had a big book in her bedroom closet all about sex with pictures of naked people that Jessica showed me when we were alone. They didn’t have much food at their house, so I hated spending the night because there wasn’t anything to eat. When their water got turned off, we scraped ice off of the top of the freezer to drink. If she wasn’t at work, Jessica and Sammy said their mom was out drinking. One day they had to move because they couldn’t pay rent.

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Chapter 1 – Excerpt from Unheard: A Memoir

Excerpt from UNHEARD: A Memoir

As soon as I hear the weight of his body touch the first step, I silently but quickly scamper back to my bed, crawl under the covers, and pretend to be asleep. My heart pounding in my chest like a jackhammer, I pray he doesn’t hear me or open my door. I hear his foot reach the third step from the top, the one that annoyingly creaks when anyone touches it, and my body tenses even more. It is difficult to breathe noiselessly, but by now I am used to trying my best to be unheard.

The split second it takes him to reach the top of the stairs and make his way to the bathroom seems like an eternity. I hear the bathroom door shut and feel a sigh of relief; I can breathe again, at least for a short time. I lay watching the second-hand of my electric clock rotate its face. I listen to the clink of the toilet seat hit the cover, the waterfall of beer-urine hitting the toilet water, and the old pipes sucking it all up when the toilet flushes.

Then I hear the elephant. The elephant, as I call it, is the loud air in the old pipes when the sink or shower water runs to the second floor. The elephant stops, and I tense again, knowing he will be coming back out and wondering if he will go back downstairs. Or will he do what he often does and stand in front of my door listening for me to make a wrong move?

The bathroom door opens so quickly it startles me, and I almost gasp for air loud enough to be heard. I watch for his feet near my door, listening intently to determine where he is going. I don’t think he knows I can feel his negative presence on the other side of my door – nor does he realize that I can see the reflection of his feet on the wooden floor. Although they are mostly unexpected, I am aware of his games, and I am not about to let him beat me. I have to be sure that in order to survive his mind games, I need to be two steps ahead of him.

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Ratt & Roll – Stephen Pearcy’s Memoir – Book Review

pearcyThe first time I’d heard the band Ratt was sometime during 7th grade. “Round and Round” was a catchy song, but being a 12-year-old that wasn’t allowed to purchase rock cassette tapes at the time, I didn’t mind that it was overplayed on the radio. I listened to Ratt throughout my junior high and high school days, purchasing whichever cassettes I could or at least duplicating tapes from friends.

Last week at the library, I found Ratt’s founder/lead singer Stephen Pearcy’s memoir: Sex, Drugs, Ratt & Roll – My Life in Rock. First I have to say that the book is very well written, flows nicely, and is easy to understand. It’s interesting to read from a fan’s point of view how Pearcy grew up, his struggle with having two broken legs after being hit by a car, heartbreak, his rise to fame, his downward spiral after the band broke up, and his newfound sobriety after the birth of his daughter. Some of the book tells pieces of his therapy sessions, most of which he seems to reveal his blatantly trampy sexual history. Pearcy does not sugar coat anything.

During the 1980s, my friends and I wanted to be like the girls in rock videos – hot and sexy and appealing to band members, but we hadn’t a clue what these band guys were really all about. While I was a 13- to 16-year-old virgin around the time I was a huge Ratt fan and drooling over Stephen Pearcy in MTV videos, he was getting screwed or blown by everything in a skirt or was nursing a bad case of gonorrhea. Pearcy’s constant reminder of how often and to what extent women wanted him is a bit nauseating. He also often reveals sexual escapades of his own band mates (particularly those of Bobby Blotzer and Robbin Crosby) and members of other popular glam rock bands that I listened to at the time (Van Halen, Poison, and Motley Crue, for instance).

Just a few examples – and these are tame:

“… there was so much goddamn trim around in those days, it didn’t make much sense to any of us to stick to one woman.”

“Our bus was a motorized fuck factory on wheels…”

“I pulled my pants down around my ankles and received the blow job of a lifetime while losing to Blotzer at Pong.”

“… one of our best tricks was to find a tall, slutty groupie with dyed blond hair and black roots… and have her suck off as many crew guys as possible; ideally, the ones who never showered. Then we’d steer her over to Blotz.”

So far the only thing that’s been blown for me is my image of the bands I used to love so much. Not that I ever thought they were innocent – but I didn’t expect them to live up to the name of a rodent by doing gaggable offenses (no pun intended).

But in the end, however, Pearcy redeems himself by admitting that (as he was older) he wanted something different – real love. That came after the birth of his daughter, Jewel, and his road to sobriety.

Some of the things that impressed me:

  • Pearcy himself seemed to steer the band to stardom. He wouldn’t stop until it happened.
  • Pearcy convinced the band to have their own look (something he describes as similar to pirates), including eye makeup – to the dismay of some of the other guys. He made his own costumes and even painted his own spandex pants.
  • Pearcy seemed to get along with others easily and make friends and connections quickly (before the downward spiral).

If you were ever a Ratt fan, this book is a must-read and difficult to put down. Oh – and it sure as hell beats 50 Shades of Grey.

To reminisce some of Ratt – here are some Youtube videos.

My Days of Heavy Metal & Being a Rocker Chick

I just read a memoir by Stephen Pearcy (of Ratt) and relived the moments of my lusting over long-haired band guys. I’d written about some of them in both of my books, which referred to me around age 13 and throughout high school.

I was known to be a “rocker” when I was a teenager and in my 20s. Only back then we were called “headbangers”, “motleys”, and “metal heads”. This was back in the 80s, so spandex, big hair, black eyeliner, and concert tshirts was my main wardrobe. (I’ve calmed down quite a bit since.) I went to every concert I could, and I’m glad I did get to see them in their prime.

Here are some excerpts from my books:

 

From my memoir "Unheard"
From my memoir “Unheard”

 

From my memoir "Unheard"
From my memoir “Unheard”

 

From my book "Dissed & Pissed"
From my book “Dissed & Pissed”

 

From "Dissed & Pissed"
From “Dissed & Pissed”

 

From "Dissed & Pissed"
From “Dissed & Pissed”

How I Got My Writing Groove Back with Flash Fiction Short Stories

Since I have dedicated most of my writing to nonfiction over the last several years, going back to fiction has been a bit of a challenge for me. I love fiction! After all, I’ve been writing it since I was a young child. I even won a school contest in sixth grade, and I’ve been reading fiction forever. So why did I stop writing and reading it for the past five or six years? I really can’t answer that except maybe I wasn’t challenged.

I am glad to say that my interest in fiction is back, thanks to NPR. NPR ran an article about two years ago on Robert Smartwood’s Hint Fiction – fiction which is written in 25 words or less. Now I am transfixed on very short, short fiction and entering contests.

I entered my very first flash fiction contest from Smokelong Quarterly in which each submission had to be exactly 30 words – no more, no less. I was rejected, but it was another step in my groove. Almost two years later I realize that these could be the beginning of some of my screenwriting ideas.

These were my submissions:

A Haunting Moment
Your cornflower blue eyes told me that the prospect was irreversible. And as you left the area under the exit sign, the doctor emerged from the operating room, looking down.

Four Walls
Been dreamin’ alot lately. Doesn’t make sense – cowbells, clocks, neon lights, numbers. Reach for the pills, swallow down with whiskey. These walls are getting lonely. My pistol stares at me.

Vinnie
Whose hair is that all over his bathroom floor, I wondered. It is dark, not red like mine. This will give me the perfect excuse to take that trip after all.