Monday, November 9, 1998

Looking for Nancy

When you turn thirty four stuff just doesn't make much sense anymore. It's like your long lost Lara who broke down crying in front of her family during Easter dinner, and couldn't exactly explain why. What exactly did happen underneath the soccer goal posts? They say heading the ball is causing brain damage. I can go along with that. And why did you think of that just now?

Snippets sniffles. Film at ten. A flickering heart. A broken car window. After a 22 hour work day I come out to the chilly street just wanting to get home- to a familiar place. But the shattered glass is a reminder of what is up ahead. My partner is worried. But I want to tell her that of all the things that have gone down this past year, this particular one doesn't even make the top ten. Reaching out but losing touch. My favorite Nagel woman. And none of it makes much sense but you seem to remember that none of it ever did and none of it is ever supposed to. 34.

My favorite Tina memory? We were moving stores east to west, west to east. During a break in the action we decided to go to lunch, Tina and I. I had recently given her a copy of my novel to read and now was my first chance to ask her what she thought. She said it seemed mighty personal. But then she shared more. That of me and my friend she had seen me as the "original" because "you lead the way and then they react." And she recalled her favorite time with Wounded Knee who she noticed I was now emulating with my black Converse canvass shoes. "I came in with a hangover and she was blasting Ted Nugent... I told her to turn it off..." I wrote Tina a song. The only song I've ever written. And it was good. Damn good.

Tina and I also agreed on another thing. Just when we would hit it big something disastrous would occur. It was bound to happen. Happiness? A losing proposition. I do sincerely hope dear Tina doesn't feel that way no more. Because the one thing I've learned is it doesn't have to be.

Another memory I can't quite explain. I started at a new job and was helped by Ms. Nancy K. And I was feeling a bit lost and out of place and she drew me a map of where everyone was at and I appreciated the help oh so much. Finally someone that saw the new guy needed some guidance. But she frustrated me to no end; only because she was so smart, and so well read, and could have... but she let her past, a past she somehow did escape on some level, be an excuse for not taking advantage of opportunities that could have been hers. F***ing the most frustrating person I've ever come across. And now she is missing. Emailed her. Called her at home and work where she is no longer at. Went to her place to find a porch full of newspapers and unanswered mail. Called the cops who couldn't do nothing. Worried but in a guilty way. I was told as a manager by a manager that if I could turn Ms. Nancy around (I was about to throw in the towel) that it would be the best feeling I ever could accomplish as a manager. And I tried, I really did.

I finally had a chance to bring my favorite furry feline in for his annual check up. I was a bit annoyed to find out he has a mild case of gingivitis and the cost it would incur to fix the problem. And my natural reaction was to make my defensive joke. I'm payin' how much? I don't pay that freaking much on my own teeth and gums? But as part of the procedure they did a blood test where the results showed his white cell count is too low. Way too low. And it can mean a few different things, the never before seen vet told me. Doesn't have to be feline leukemia which is the leading killer of cats. Could just be feline AIDS. Oh boy what a relief.

So I tell my drooling roommate, my friend that he can't abandon me now. He has to stick around. He looks at me and wonders why now the special attention. Why I'm holding him tighter and recalling all we've been through together...

They say you can't die of a broken heart and yet they still seem to want to monitor things when they aren't quite right. All the feelings that bore. Right through you. All the feelings keep leading right back to the one. And with another passing anniversary of the beginning of all this I come to wonder why it is when you do make the decision (and why is it so naturally difficult) to reveal that part of you- the part that beats even when it feels ever so beat- that you always wonder whether or not you've done the proper thing. It never fails until it does. So this is 34.

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