Thursday, July 31, 2003

Something I was going to send to Rosa...

This song was in my head. It's a song that has helped me over the years try to keep my spirits up.

And I nearly wrote Rosa an email, telling her how painful life has been with me for the past three and a half years without her. How hard it is to live without her.

But I'm still alive.

Somehow, I'm still kicking. Even if I'm barely kicking.

I feel so isolated. Right now is really rough for me.

I don't know if anyone reads these words. Sometimes, I think I write this Blog just to myself, as a way of documenting things for myself. Is there anybody out there? (Ah, but that's a different song!)

So, without further ado, here's the song. It's by Jackson Browne - a huge THANK YOU to him for writing these words.

It's been a long time since I watched these lights alone
I look around my life tonight and you are gone
I might have done something to keep you if I'd known
How unhappy you had become

While I was dreaming of you
With my heart in your hands
And I was following though
With my beautiful plans

Yeah now I'm rolling down this canyon drive
With your laughter in my head
I'm gonna have to block it out somehow to survive
'cause those dreams are dead
And I'm alive

I want to go where I will never hear your name
I want to lose my sorrow and be free again
And I know I've been insane
When I think of places I could have been

But I was dreaming of you
With my heart in your hands
And I was following through
With my beautiful plans

Standing here by the highway side
Watching these trucks blow by
Inches from my face
Yeah thinking 'bout the time I've wasted
And the pleasure we once tasted
Looking up and down this road
I've been here before
Can't be here no more

Yeah now I'm rolling down California five
With your laughter in my head
I'm gonna have to block it out somehow to survive
'cause those dreams are dead
And I'm alive

Yeah, I've alive.

Wednesday, July 30, 2003

What am I going to do?

Every night, the nightmare's the same.

Rosa's getting married. I'm losing Rosa forever.

Sometimes the places and times change. Tonight, she told me in front of Sean and Megan. If I'm having his child, I should marry him, she said.

And, like every night, I woke up screaming, my heart in my chest.

I don't know how much more of this I can take.

Monday, July 28, 2003

Bookmarks from the ‘80s…

Before I get into the main story, let me open by saying I am sick.

… “I am sick.”

There. Much better.

I have a head cold, which is not only really annoying but rather stupid to get here in the midst of summer… dammit. Woke up this morning with my nose turned to “automatic drip” and away I went. Now, I just want to lie down. Ugh.

No surprise that I’m sick, I guess, when you hear about my night.

First thing, this weekend was my weekly three days of depression. Every weekend, I just try to ride it out until the week – get through. Well, I was getting through when I made the mistake of moving this old nightstand by my bed. I’ve had this stand since I moved out of my mom’s house in ‘85/’86 – and maybe before then! The plan is to buy a new dresser – my first new dresser ever! – which would replace my old one and take up the space used by the present dresser and this nightstand.

So, I moved it…

And found within a veritable time capsule from the 1980’s! (And some things from times before, such as my copy of Newsweek with John F. Kennedy.)

There was the button from Valley High that read, “We’re No. 1.” (Get it? “We’re no one”.)

There was my Adam Ant button from high school. (I liked buttons.)

There was my American Bartending School diploma – receipt, actually – that would allow me the privilege of making drinks for my friends. (Heaven forbid I actually get a job… Well, this was long before I realized that Bartending has little to do with making drinks.)

Interestingly, I found two phone books. One, from high school, had Julie Starr’s phone number, Teresa Alaniz’s phone number, and a few more. The other was jammed with slips of paper with phone numbers on them. (It seems the idea of writing them in the book escaped me…)

Then, I found my Mickey Mouse watch. That blew me away! I thought that was long gone! Amazing the things I hide away like a freaking field mouse!

Lastly, I found three bookmarks. They were Rosa’s… they were OBVIOUSLY Rosa’s. Who else would have a bookmark emblazoned with “When the going gets tough, the tough go shopping?”

Suddenly, it was just like when I found her key. What to do?

This time, I broke down and sent her an email, thinking of her pregnant form all the while and how much I wanted to be there… how much I’ve always wanted to be the man she loved.

How many times can a heart be broken?

Needless to say, I bought a pack of smokes, drank a quart of vodka, and finally passed out after 1am.

So, is it any wonder I feel sick?

Wednesday, July 23, 2003

Nightmare Chiller Horror Theater...

And, so, the nightmares continue.

The first thing I can remember is an image of me on the patio, drunk and smoking. Then, I saw Rosa and Michael, rushing to the hospital to deliver the baby. Then, there I was on the patio, drunk and smoking. Then, I saw Rosa giving birth, Michael holding her hand. Then, me drunk and smoking. Then, Rosa holding the baby and Michael kissing her. Then, me drunk and smoking.

I woke up screaming. I screamed so hard it hurt.

Why do I still have nightmares over Rosa? How long will this go on?

When you love someone with all of your heart and soul, it's not that easy just to stop. And it's harder to start again when you never wanted what ended to stop. My nightmare paints me as someone wallowing in self-pity while Rosa moves on with her life - an image that would make her pleased as punch, I'm sure. Sadly, though, I can't help but think that's exactly the case. I don't date. Hell, I hardly talk to women. It just feels so wrong - as if a part of me is saying, "Aren't you supposed to be married?"

The answer to that, of course, is, "Yes." I am supposed to be married. Sadly, the woman I married wasn't fond of that idea. And while I may be over the horrid guilt of what she pushed me into doing, I wonder if I'll ever be over the loss.

Not yet, that's for damned sure.

Tuesday, July 22, 2003

The Linksys Braintrust...

Working where I do, I run into a lot of incredibly intelligent people.

Let me know if this sounds familiar to your own life.

Someone came to me today and asked me to write a new kind of document with a software product I've never used before. I said I could do it but couldn't promise when I'd be done as "I've never done it before."

He asked, "How long will it take you?"

"I don't know. I've never done it before."

"Do you think you could have it done by Friday?"

"I don't know. I've never done it before."

"When do you think you'll have it done?"

"I don't know. I've never done it before! Ask me how long it'd take me to fly to the sun?!"

At this point, I was really suprised to see him glance skyward and actually ponder the question for a moment, before asking, "How long would it take you to fly to the sun?"

"I don't know! I've never done it before!!"

Monday, July 21, 2003

Short Garden Note...

So, I recently started buying plants. I've had a plant Rosa gave me for years (since our break-up)(the first one) and recently I purchased myself a Gardenia bush. It's quite nice, though the leaves are glossy enough to look fake.

I'm thinking of transplanting Rosa's plant into a bigger pot... let it really flourish.

I use to love working in my garden when I was with Rosa. Rosa and gardening go together like the heartless woman who destroyed my life and a place where plants grow...

I'd go out on the weekend and weed around my herb bushes - rosemary, oregano, catnip, and others. I'd go to my vegetable garden and check my tomatoes. I'd edge the front yard and smell Rosa's jasmine growing. Rosa and I rarely gardened together but it was something we shared.

No more.

But the desire to grow things remains.

... Maybe I'll buy a tomato plant...
This is how it started...

It? What It? The Summer It, that's what I'm talking about today.

I started the summer with a singular idea in my head: Get through it alive! After all, I'd been dumped by Rosa only recently and believe me when I tell you it hurt worse than a testicular indian burn. I also knew I had two staged readings coming up: one for a play I had not written wherein I'd be playing an heroic pedophile and another for a play I had written that I'd also end up having to direct! With my rotten job, my finances (or lack thereof), and my loneliness all piled up, it didn't help to remember that it was only a year ago when I hadn't been sleeping, had been sleepwalking, and nearly went over the edge at the Grand Canyon! Getting through the summer alive seemed to be a full plate.

I had one other plan but it wasn't much of a plan. I decided to devote my summer to finding someone with whom I could share my life... for however short a time that might be. So, once the staged readings were over, I joined and started trying to get "out there" more. Here are a few things I've learned from this:
1) I still act like a married man. That is to say, I'm no good at approaching women. I've completely forgot the shorthand single people speak when they meet each other or even if one exists.
2) I'm shy. Yep, I'm admitting it. I'm shy. 'nuff said.
3) Most people are incredibly stupid. One lovely thing about being married is that you're allowed to spend your time with someone who is about your equal (if you've played your cards right) and don't have to humor ignorance and 21st century laziness (Why is it all some people can talk about is reality TV, anyway?) in the name of, at least, having some company.
4) I am past being tired of hearing friends who are in relationships tell me how easy it is to be single.
5) More people are allergic to cats than you would think. And I can't get rid of mine. They're my responsibility and what kind of person would I be if I shirked that? (Note: Either they're allergic to cats or taking an easy route out. ... Let's say they're allergic.)
6) If it wasn't for Annie, I'd be the only single person I know. (Sorry, Annie.)
7) Most women who say they want someone with manners, intelligence, and ethics are rude morons who would sell their own mothers for a rock of crack.

So, we're halfway through summer and I've yet to meet anyone. DeAnna once said to me that she'd always believe it was, "Ken La Salle, table for one." When I asked her what she meant by that, she said that I was too smart for the world and could never find anyone with whom I'd be compatible.

Which brings me to my next point. Since I was a teenager, I've had the whole "genius" epithet thrown my away. Either it's been "comedic genius" or "literary genius" or "musical genius" or your regular, run of the mill genius or the obligatory genius. Recently, it's either been the "misunderstood genius" or "unappreciated genius". Quite frank, I'm rather sick of it. When I was eighteen, I was told upon high school graduation that I was expected to win a Pulitzer. Now, with my plays, I'm getting it again. I wish people would just lay off! I'm just a human being. I would trade any amount of genius simply to be happy. And while I know it's not always our lot to be happy, the lot of some is to suffer, that just sucks and I don't like it.

As the summer started off busily, I took some time off to rest. Rest, however, was quite elusive and it's been a month now that I've had nightmares, insomnia, and the occasional sleepwalk. When rest is elusive, what's the point of trying? It was with that thought that I began writing a few weeks ago. I finished the first act of my new play, This They Call Freedom, late last week.

Saturday, at the OCPA meeting, we had a reading of the very early draft. The play is about a society where people are lulled to sleep through television, religion, and various other vices so that business, government, and other rotten forces can control them. So, it was surprising to me that most people, after the reading, thought this took place in the Soviet Union, or in some fictitious land that could never be. I had thought it was clear I was placing it in America. The jokes went over exceedingly well, however, and it is always after moments like that when I wonder what my friends in Danger Zone (Southern California's eminent sketch comedy troupe) must think of my comedy... and if they'd ever want me to write for them... There were many comments, of course. One gentleman said, "That 'Three Hands of Government' idea - that was genius." Oh, shut up.

So, my summer didn't turn out as relaxing as I'd hoped and keeps getting busier. Last week, Steve cast me in "Play It Again, Sam" at the Cabrillo Playhouse. I'll be playing a small part as a favor to him. This won't be a play I'll solicit to all my friends. I don't think I'll care too much if anyone goes. The part is so small that I'll be able to continue working on my play at the same time and, so, I'll be busy until the play's run ends at the end of September.

I get through this, I get through the summer alive. Mission accomplished.

Then, we'll enter autumn. (The season...) That will hold my birthday, painful holidays, and worst of all, the delivery of Rosa's baby. I'm hoping I die before any of that... shortly after this play closes and I complete writing This They Call Freedom... living through that alone will be far too painful.

I always end these on happy notes, don't I?

Thursday, July 17, 2003

But it won't be a guerilla war...

Remember when we first went into Iraq and we were told over and over, promise after promise, by all the leaders that it would never ever ever never ever turn into a guerilla war. This won't be like another Vietnam, they told us.

Well, now they're telling us different.

But we should trust them when they send the poor off to war and give more money to the rich who so desperately need it...
Impotence Drug Makers to Sponsor NFL...

That's the headline. "Impotence Drug Makers to Sponsor NFL".

What better statement to make against those cro-magnon, beer-swilling, sub-mental morons known as "football fans".

... Oh, come on. How long have you been reading that you could actually think I liked sports?

Wednesday, July 16, 2003

The Walker Sleeps Tonight... Walking...

Yep. It's happened.

After weeks of nightmares, now I have something else to worry about.

Last night I caught myself sleepwalking. Not once, either. Twice.

The first one was at about 11:30pm. I woke up standing next to my bed. That was enough to keep my up until nearly 2:30am. Then, I had this nightmare. I dreamed I was trapped in a hotel room and I had to get out, but they'd taken my clothing. I couldn't just run out naked, so I wrapped a blanket around me and headed for the door. The problem was, I couldn't get the door open while holding the blanket. In reality, I was struggling against my blanket and trying to open the door while asleep. I woke up realizing this and turned to see most of my bed on the floor... it must have been a humdinger of a nightmare.

So, I'm sleepwalking again.

Last summer, I sleepwalked almost every night I could sleep - which was only two to three nights each week. One time, I woke up while driving on the freeway. After months of that, I tried to kill myself.

Is that what I have to look forward to?

Stay tuned.

Monday, July 14, 2003

Tracy Lords...

This isn't about porn... yet. We'll get there. I promise.

As many of you well know, the great Katherine Hepburn passed away recently. Articles about her have been going around like SARS in a chinese laundry (forgive me) and I saw one today that give me the frightful giggles. Look at this. I don't know how long it will last but it's an article about Hepburn's new biography, a book that I'm going to have to get. (Or some nice person can give me...)

Two-thirds of the way down the page is a link to Tracy Lords. Tracy Lords, I thought, must have referred to the wonderful part Ms. Hepburn played in the classic film, Philadelphia Story. One of my favorite movies of the era, it was also the first film of Ms. Hepburn's I remember seeing. I now own it on DVD. It was always one of Rosa's and my favorites.

I didn't think it could refer to Tracy Lords, ex-porn queen.

... Well... it did.

Insult or compliment to the late, great Kate? You decide. Meanwhile, I'll just giggle.
Living with Illusions...

There's an old game in philosophy... it's about illusions...

Say you know somebody who holds a belief that happens to be wrong. He's a Flat-Earther. He thinks McDonald's food is healthy. He supports school prayer. He thinks Shrub actually won the election. You know, just flat-out wrong. You take this person and you ask, "Would this person be better off if you enlightened him?" The obvious answer is that he would certainly be better off because to live in ignorance is to perpetuate unhappiness. It only hurts you to deny the world is round or to eat fast food or to not understand the significance of the separation of church and state or to not understand how Shrub has been anally raping our country.

At least... that always seemed to be obvious to me. There are people on the other side of that argument who would say that if people's beliefs work for them, you should allow them that. Kurt Vonnegut talks about "harmless lies" people believe - religious, political, etc. I never really bought that... before...

But, as you know, I've been plagued by nightmares recently - a few every night. Normally, I can't go back to sleep afterwards... on those nights when I do sleep at all... So, we're talking more than three weeks of nightmares, no sleep, and your basic terror. (You try having nightmares every night and tell me if you don't walk around a nervous wreck.)

Well, you often reach moments of clarity in the midst of all that. Moments of clarity are good for reflection but don't necessarily mean a resolution to things - just so you know. It was in just such a moment that I was thinking of Rosa last night during a long walk. I was reflecting on how Rosa recently (meaning "back in April") broke up with me, saying that she didn't love me. Hearing that... well, it didn't hurt. Shattering my right arm hurt. This was much worse. This was a women who I'd loved more than I ever knew I could, a woman I couldn't stop loving, but she found it relatively easy to stop. Too easy.

That's when the thought occurred to me. How much did she love me when she told me to find someone else?

Did Rosa, in fact, ever really love me at all? Back in 2000, when she told me to hit the road, she'd achieved everything she'd wanted to achieve, with my help, and attained everything she'd wanted, with my help. What else did she need me for? So, why did it come as any surprise that she spend every day for months trying to get rid of me, filling my head with how little she wanted me and how I needed to find someone else if I ever wanted to be happy.

It suddenly occurred to me that I may have been suffering from an illusion of devastating magnitude. I'd always thought that, since Rosa was the love of my life, I must have been the love of hers.

... Not so. If I had been, would she have found it so easy, so necessary, to reject me - over and over and over again?

I'd devoted my life to a woman who didn't love me.

Is it any wonder I'm suffering from nightmares? I'm living one!

... and that's the cheerful news for today...

Saturday, July 12, 2003

A note on a typical night…

It’s nearly 1am, Saturday morning, July 12. I would like nothing more than to get some sleep but I can’t get to sleep because of the “evening ritual”. I call it the “evening ritual” because it’s been going on for years now, whenever I try to get some sleep. The “evening ritual” takes several forms. Sometimes, I’ll try to sleep but wake up from nightmares – nightmares about how I left Rosa and my life will never be good again. Sometimes, I’ll go to sleep and sleepwalk… waking up under the strangest of circumstances.

Sometimes, like tonight, I will get in bed in the hopes of sleeping and voices, an army of voices, will spring into my mind and remind me of how I lost Rosa and how alone I am and how I’m better off dead and how all hope is lost… and on and on and on.

It’s not what I would call “fun”.

It’s about three and a half years since I first asked Rosa for a divorce. After months of her telling me how she would rather me be with someone else, after I found someone who I thought was that someone else, after I was vilified as an evil, horrible man for doing what I did, after years alone and in pain, still I suffer.

But, Dear Friends, if that was all of it, I could probably get by.

Recently, most of my friends have been disappearing. I’m getting the impression that they’ve heard enough of my sorrow, had enough of my pain, and are just plain sick of my loneliness. Hell, if it wasn’t for Annie and Tim, I’d have no one to talk to at all.

But the sad truth is that most of my friends have taken the attitude that I should just forget about what's happened to my life and meet some nice girl so we can double date again like when I was married... as if it was that easy. (Personally, I'm just trying to keep everyday from being complete torment... with very little luck.)

They may all have a point. I mean, this show has overstayed its engagement and I would rather it hit the road – move to be another lonely guy in another town.

But, still, I can’t sleep. I keep thinking about how Rosa wanted me out of her life, how she got rid of me, and… well, there’s an “and” but let’s not get into that. Rosa didn’t want me from the beginning – as hard as that is to admit – and made sure to get rid of me. Now, I’m stuck with no past, no future… and no one ever gives me presents (ha ha)…

Sadly, most of my time is spent alone – to the point where I’m beginning to lose it a bit. I don’t even know if anyone reads this Blog… except, perhaps, Tim… In the final analysis, I could be talking to dead air.

I don’t think I can take much more of this. Call me weak but three and a half years of solitude…

(NOTE: Please excuse any typos... I was drunk when I wrote this...)

Tuesday, July 08, 2003

Slavery is bad, says Bush...

As hard as this might be to believe, our belabored Bush... um, Shrub... gave a speech in Senegal recently, stating strongly the evils of slavery. Slavery, to hear him tell it from a speech probably more suited to 150 years ago, should be put to an end. He also claimed that the US has always had the moral high-ground in this area. Don't believe me?

Am I the only person ashamed to call this person my President? The President is supposed to be the highest of offices, occupied by the best and brightest. This stupid mother-fucker never caught on about slavery for fuck's sake!!!!
And you wonder why I worry...

And one more thing... continuing to be the Arms Supplier of the World (TM), Shrub also pushed the virtues of heavy military equipment for farming... yep... farming.

Monday, July 07, 2003

Why doesn't anyone call July 4th by name anymore?

This question just popped into my head as I prepared to write an entry for this past Independence Day weekend.

The holiday fell on a Friday this year and, knowing I'd never make it through the long weekend with my sanity and/or my bank account intact, I was so glad when Tim called from Ocean Beach to ask if I wanted to come down for a visit. Weekends are hard enough - all that silence, that void sucking out the loneliness I try so hard to suppress (nature abhors a vacuum) - but three-day weekends are an enormous bitch. This one was typical.

So, I headed down to Ocean Beach Thursday night. Why wait, I figured. Tim and I have known each other since high school (around the time the dinosaurs became extinct) and we really enjoy each other's company. We have a strange friendship. After all, he's gay while I'm straight. He's extroverted while I'm introverted. He's talented while I am GOD.

He brags while I'm modest.

He's the kind of friend who will ask a question about some personal, bodily function and, rather than be disgusted, you'll give an answer.

Since I went down there on Thursday after work, it wasn't long before the two of them (Tim and his boyfriend, Axel) were fast asleep. Sleep wasn't coming on to me, though. It was about as frigid as a school marm in the golden age of television and about as distant as Rosa... the whole time I knew her. (Update on her? There is no update on her. She hasn't called, written... nothing. It's pretty obvious how much she wants me around.) I wasn't going to be sleeping any time soon. I must say, though, being one of those weirdoes who lives without a television, it was mighty nice to have a TV to watch. I saw an episode of The Great Race (or something like that) and loved it. I also saw an episode of The Family Guy - and I must now stop myself from buying the DVD. (What can I say? It was funny!) But by about 1am, I decided to get up and go for a walk. Tim lives very close to the beach and I was able to walk on the beach (it's open 24-hours/day - can you believe that?!) beneath the starlight. There was the Big Dipper. I looked at it for a while... looked at it and felt a cold hand clutch my heart as I remembered how Rosa and I would look at the stars. I swore a bit under my breath and started walking again and returned to Tim's place a couple hours later.

The next morning, Tim and Axel snuck outside for a cigarette. I got up and asked, "Were you guys quiet because you thought you'd wake me up?" Yes, they were but I had yet to sleep. Thankfully, though, after Axel took off to the airport (he left on a mini-vacation of his own) and Tim went to work (shop smart, shop Pet-smart!), I caught a couple hours of shut-eye.

I woke up in a sauna. I didn't realize Tim had a sauna... and that it doubled as his living room... It was quite humid. But I relaxed. I read. I watched some TV. I went for a walk. (Yes. I like to walk.)

Tim came home at 7:30 that night and started getting ready to go. It was July 4th and we headed down to the beach for the fireworks. Ocean Beach is an interesting community; I'll give them that. They're also a bit whacked. But in their wackiness is the reason why I like them. Tim and I sat on the beach with about 50 million other people (in a community of just a few thousand!) and watched the city's firework show over the ocean, people launching illegal fireworks out to the ocean (with not a few veering into the crowd), people lighting legal fireworks on the beach, millions (okay... maybe 60) surfers bobbing out in the water as we did the JAWS theme... hoping, and the city's few cops shake their heads and say "Oh well." I miss the "Oh well." As soon as people in Huntington Beach started being arrested for drinking a beer on their own patio or lawn, I wondered where that "Oh well" went. It's alive and well in Ocean Beach. Maybe it last a long, long time.

After the show (fireworks, etc.), Tim and I went back to his place and started to get drunk. We like to stay in practice getting drunk for those times when we're in competition or even have to get drunk professionally. We got a great deal of practice that night. Around midnight, rather than vomit we decided to walk to the beach... I've never been drunk on the beach before. It makes maneuvering through the sand even more interesting. Then, Tim suggested that we take our shoes off... you know, because it still wasn't hard enough to walk. I don't know if he felt like he was going to fall into the water and be washed out to sea only to wash up at San Onofre as if I needed more problems but I did. Then, we walked back up through "downtown", yelling and laughing. All that was missing was a verse of "How Dry I Am". That night I didn't get to sleep until the sun was up... which was the next morning.

The next day, well, it took a while to work through the hangover. Then, we read the first scene of the new play, This They Call Freedom. That was a total of 13 pages - and I can't say that Tim didn't laugh at one joke... because he did... laugh at exactly one joke.

This is where I begin to worry. This new play is a political farce and, while I know that Tim is not politically aware enough to be considered ignorant (sorry!), he does have good comic timing. Sadly, though, I don't know if the new play does...

Now, the weekend is over - three more days I got through. This entry isn't going to have a nice, tidy ending. Sometimes, I feel as though I'm clawing my way through my life, trying to get to my death so the pain will be over. That's the kind of shit that hit me when I got home... but it was also hitting me as I walked alone during the weekend or when I tried to sleep... and didn't. But I am always grateful for my friends who try to help me through.

I hope your 4th worked out well.

Wednesday, July 02, 2003

It's the return of Insomnia Theatre...

Had a great night last night. And, if you believe that, I've got some beach-front property in Kansas I'd like to sell you.

As some of you may know - or all of you if I'm repeating myself - I had an interesting summer last year. Insomnia, sleepwalking, a nervous breakdown, and an attempted suicide made it very interesting. It all started with insomnia, which is probably why insomnia gets my paranoia alarm ringing like an epileptic on crack these days.

... which brings us to last night.

I went to bed early. After missing sleep over the weekend (ah, the good old days!), I was in need of some good sleep. At 11pm, I was in the sack. Yes, 11pm is early for me. I dropped off without too much delay and slept like a baby.

Until 1am.

I woke up, thinking I'd lost something. It took me several minutes of looking high and low all over my bedroom to realize 1) I wouldn't find it and 2) I didn't even know what "it" was! By that time, I was wide awake. I thought I'd put myself to sleep with some reading. I'm reading "Fast Food Nation" right now, a book so alarming it would make a Vegan out of Sean - and if you know Sean, that's saying a WHOLE LOT!

Well, by 2:30am, I knew I wasn't going to sleep. I got up and started wandering around my apartment. What does one do at 2:30am? Wander!

I knew why I wasn't sleeping. I knew what I was missing. Rosa. Like Rome, all roads seem to lead to her. I lost so much when I lost her that living for the past three and a half years has been a constant challenge. Things would be so much easier, I thought, if I still had the woman who I love. The problem, though, is that she never really loved me. In that context, it's not hard to see how she could have been so selfish and uncaring and how she could have tossed me aside so easily.

I started doing a little tidying. When you're half-awake and unable to sleep, you shouldn't start any major chores - you're hoping you'll fall back to sleep, after all - but a little tidying is good. I started putting away some laundry I'd done a few nights before. There it was, folded up neat and tidy in the basket, waiting to be put away. As I was putting away some socks, I noticed something in the drawer.

It was a key. A car key. Specifically, it was Rosa's car key. I still had it from when we were together. I'd buried it away and forgotten about it and she had obviously not cared about it, either. I sat down and looked at that key for several minutes.

What to do, I wondered. Do I toss it? Give it back?

I couldn't toss it. I felt that would be wrong. If someone found something of mine, I'd want them to return it. So, returning it seemed like the thing to do. But when? How? I knew I'd have plenty of time to think about that over the weekend. I'll be seeing Tim this weekend, spending it at his place in San Diego - I could think about it then.

And, so, I went back to sleep. It was 3am.

At 3:30am, I was still awake. The key sat upon my dresser. I couldn't take my mind off of it.

At 4am, I still couldn't take my mind off of it. Having something of hers - when she had so vividly excluded me from her life, not wanting anything to do with me - just felt wrong.

By 4:30am, I knew I couldn't wait until the weekend. I got up, grabbed the key, and drove to her house. I put the key in an envelope with a short note saying "I found this and thought you'd want it back" enclosed on her porch and drove home.

By this time, it was 5am. I knew I wouldn't be getting back to sleep.

Maybe I'll sleep tonight. Maybe someday the pain of losing Rosa won't be so tangible. Maybe, someday, I will truly be able to live with what I've done, with what I had no choice but to do, with leaving Rosa.

Until then, dear friends, I'm really tired.

Tuesday, July 01, 2003

Lies my President told me...

In this day of government-sponsored "journalism", it's still nice to find articles that honesty try to get to the truth, use evidence rather than propaganda, and are written courageously. Just such an article is called Ten Appaling Lies We Were Told About Iraq. Give it a read, if you're interested in the criminals trying to destroy this country. It's a fantastic article.

Here's a bit of an excerpt:

So, months after the war, we are once again where we started – with plenty of rhetoric and absolutely no proof of this "grave danger" for which O.J. Smith died. The Bush administration is now scrambling to place the blame for its lies on faulty intelligence, when in fact the intelligence was fine; it was their abuse of it that was "faulty."

Rather than apologize for leading us to a preemptive war based on impossibly faulty or shamelessly distorted "intelligence" or offering his resignation, our sly madman in the White House is starting to sound more like that other O.J. Like the man who cheerfully played golf while promising to pursue "the real killers," Bush is now vowing to search for "the true extent of Saddam Hussein's weapons programs, no matter how long it takes."

On the terrible day of the 9/11 attacks, five hours after a hijacked plane slammed into the Pentagon, retired Gen. Wesley Clark received a strange call from someone (he didn't name names) representing the White House position: "I was on CNN, and I got a call at my home saying, 'You got to say this is connected. This is state-sponsored terrorism. This has to be connected to Saddam Hussein,'" Clark told Meet the Press anchor Tim Russert. "I said, 'But – I'm willing to say it, but what's your evidence?' And I never got any evidence.'"

And neither did we.
Let's do it again, like we did last summer...

Well, dear friends, let me tell you it has been a week... and it's only Tuesday. (One eyebrow just went up into my ever-receding hairline...)

I spent this weekend with an old friend. His name was insomnia and he was HUNGRY! So, I didn't sleep Friday or Saturday. (Actually, I slept for a couple of hours Sunday morning but awoke screaming from a nightmare. Yes, it was about Rosa.) When Sunday night came around, I took some medication to help me sleep. (This worked but I nearly slept until Monday afternoon!)

Some of you may remember that last summer started with insomnia, worked its way to sleepwalking, was promoted to nervous breakdown and nearly retired over the edge of the Grand Canyon. I DO NOT want to do that again. I'm trying to keep in mind that, while history does repeat itself, it is rarely this obvious. I haven't started sleepwalking (yet) but I'm keeping my eye out. (I have to keep it in a jar so it stays moist...)

The upside to all of this is that manic, insomniac energy really jump-starts the old creative energy and I'm back to writing again. The current play is This They Call Freedom, which I can only describe as "George Orwell meets Monty Python".

I've got to keep myself busy. Otherwise, I'll really go nuts.