We are moving around the corner and the process has felt like a long break-up that keeps trying to backpedal and see if there’s anything vestigial from the relationship that can be saved. Like that tinny song: “She said/What about/’Breakfast at Tiffany’s’.” Remember that one? A mutual affection for an Audrey Hepburn film can’t save us. It is time to pack up and move on to the greener pasture.
Moving has been going on for soooo long now, I have given it a new name. Moving, or as I like to call it, Finding all the loose change in your house that was ever minted. Ever. Oh, and also finding: beads, doll shoes, Legos, stickers with dust and dinosaur bits festering on them, and enough hair rubberbands to keep an entire cheerleading squad suspended in mid-air. I am almost persuaded to believe that while I was out, a cheerleading convention took place in my home and they tried to clean up all the hair rubberbands and beads and stickers but they just couldn’t. Spirit sticks are a mess.
At a writer’s conference, a woman I’ve never met turns to me, “Oh my gosh girl, you look great. Even for a writer!” I said, “My stars, you do, too! What’s your secret? You must be a writer!”
She: “No, but I do like your glasses.”
I: “No, but I do love your hair.”
We look at each other’s nametag. We have the same last name.
I: “Are you married to a Korean?”
She: “No. Chinese.”
I: “Did you write a book about it?”
She: “Haven’t written it about surviving that yet…”
I: “Oh. I have a book for you, then.”
I went to this poet nerd camp when I was in high school. There was a tandem cheer camp taking place on the same campus. I remember overhearing the cheerleaders, who marched and cheered going to every meal, “Yeah. The writer kids? Like, all I hear they do the whole time is…write?!”
I don’t know what day it is lately except today is a day that I am supposed to be moving. Not just moving houses but moving ideologies. I’ve been sulking lately about my book. Have you ever been working so hard on something, just gutting yourself to make it so excellent and then the gal who has more friends and a way cuter haircut does something similar but it’s still a bit pedestrian? Yet everyone around her is RAH-RAH waving their spirit sticks and you just…Yeah. That’s not a good place to set up camp. You’ve got to move on from that jealous onlooking position and find a place where you can be even more excellent and refined and distinct. But it’s tempting, isn’t it? To just begrudge popular girlfriend of her phenomenal blog audience and multiple book deals, even though most of her sentences appear to be bought at a discount on 1-800-CLICHE.COM? It’s altogether seductive to think that such a career blossoms overnight. I know it doesn’t. I also know that my goal with this book is not stardom. It’s to share a message of humor and hope.
Plus, jealousy has a way of painting some pretty ugly lines on our faces. they don’t fade but grow ever deeper with each jealous brushstroke.
And let’s be honest. Book deal or not, no author can really afford the Botox.