Thursday, March 28, 2002

I just got back from walking Pinkerton the dog. He is my housemate's dog, and he's a Schipperke with tons of energy. I'm living with my two friends who have graciously taken me in for awhile to get caught up in finances. It's helped immensely. Not just having somewhere to lay my head, but to have the company and companionship. My cats weren't thrilled about the sudden immersion of "life with a dog," but now everyone seems to be getting along just fine. Pinkerton is cooped up inside today because the palm trees are being trimmed, thus our walk through the hills.

It is a pretty gray day, being that the gray is a warm gray that illuminates anything green. It reminds me of the days of approaching storms while growing up in Kansas, which, besides the sunsets are about the only thing I miss from Kansas.

I'm in the process of applying to real jobs, if that's what you want to call them and have committed to at least finishing a cover letter before I go to work at Barnes and Noble today. I guess I can mention the bookstore. It's not like there aren't tons of them. I'm applying to jobs in New York. I don't know, but since September 11th, I feel a need to be there. I feel like I wasn't there for New York when it needed me. I've always contemplated a move back since I left, but the pull is much stronger now. Also, my family is on the East Coast which is another reason.

I've been casing apartment sites to check out what a place in New York would cost me, and I'm surprised to see that the prices vary greatly, and that there are a large number of places for less than what I was paying in West Hollywood when I lived there. Nice places. One bedrooms that don't face a brick wall, even! And I was affording my apartment in West Hollywood when I wasn't on my largest salary. So, that gives me hope that I won't have to greatly reduce the quality of my life. Most of them that I've seen are hardwood floors, exposed brick walls and nicely kept. And, in good neighborhoods even. It's very encouraging.

There are more worries about moving back to New York, (suitcase bombs being one of them) but I'm just tackling one worry at a time. And who knows, I just may end up staying here. That's the beauty of life.

Tuesday, March 26, 2002

I've been working at a major bookstore for about three weeks now. I came to the decision to work there because I felt that a book store would provide me with an atmosphere of coworkers who are intelligent, and customers who are a step up from the fray, being readers. And, so far I am right. It's not working in a music store where the customers are younger and want to see how much you really know, but with books, people know that you can't have the answer to everything and for the most part aren't afraid to admit that they need help or don't know something.

I wasn't sure what to expect. I hadn't really applied to a job in over a year. A long story, but let's just say that after a turbulent year that I wouldn't wish on anyone, I was a bit timid about walking into the store. I was more timid when they called me for an interview, and scared when they called me for a second one. I was terrified when they wanted me for the job. The worst scenarios flew through my mind. Claustrophobia, depression, anxiety attacks, and boredom. But, I showed up anyway. And that was the hardest thing to do.

I've just come off a year of depression and an almost phobia about working again. It wasn't the work, but I was afraid that it would set me on the downward spiral of depression and self doubt that I experienced in 2001. I had hit a career dead end, where I physically couldn't show up for work. I worked at Disney for a horrible boss, and a stupid site about a subject matter that I couldn't give a shit about. I was making a ton of money, but it didn't matter. In the mornings, I just couldn't wake up.

But I digress.

The job at the book store has been so important to me in many ways. I have somewhere to go during the day, people who expect me to show up. My fears were completely unfounded. Not only do I like the job, I'm sorry when my shifts are over. I love dealing with the customers and helping people find their books. I love seeing what they bring to my counter and greeting them when they approach me. I care about the people who come in the store, and in treating them with respect. I think because, I've learned to respect myself again. Another long story.

It cracks me up, but no one who I work with or any of the customers have a clue that I walked away from a high paying job, and that's the way I like it. I gave up the cool car, the hip apartment in the hip neighborhood, and the designer clothes so I could strip down and find out who I really was. I didn't do it gallantly, mind you. Iwas kicking and screaming the entire time, holding onto every last bit of that life until I just couldn't anymore. And now, here I am, happier that I ever was with the "good life."

The people that I work with seem to resent the rich neighborhood and its inhabitants that come into the store, but I don't. I've been there in a couple of ways, and know that it isn't an issue of have's and have nots. It doesn't mean anything to me that others have money while I'm struggling to get back on to my feet. I'm happy and content with who I am, and understand that my life is taking me on a different path at the moment. Instead of looking at these people as a step above, I treat them as if they are my peers. Because unbeknownst to them, they are. I've sat across the table in board rooms from people just like them, so the people who come into the store just don't impress me that way. And, I don't want to be them. I already know who "they" are and am not intimidated. I am appreciative of them as human beings and that I'm well enough again to be in a position to help them. I'm fine with them thinking that I'm a $7.00 an hour employee, because right now, that is what I am. Who I am, however is another story. That gets more complicated, but it's brought me to this point of having incredible perspective on what is important. And, understanding that every day I show up for work is a triumph that overshadows anyone's wealth.

Saturday, March 23, 2002

So this is the day I start my own blog. I started another one dedicated to Rob, but this one is just from me. Straight from the hip. Unabashed, and unapologetic.

It's my life as it exists and how I see it. That's it for now.