Secret Pop

Jan 30, 2004

K-118: The Widowmaker

This past week I watched the documentary Shelter Dogs on HBO, and it was terribly upsetting. I expected to tear up a bit, but when they put this one little guy to sleep, I started crying in full. So so sad. In the background, my mother asked me and Beulah why we watch things that upset us so much. Sarah answered in our stead: "They like to torture themselves." I don't think that's true. But maybe it is.

Sarah, my dad, and I watched the Gatti-Branco fight that Sarah had taped. There were some impossibly amusing moments. Like when my father was demonstrating to us what a rabbit punch is like by punching himself in the back of the neck hard and then groaning. And then telling us to try it on our own necks. Which we did. Later, he suggested we show each other what it feels like when another fighter leans on you. I don't know why he was in such a tutorial mood, but it was funny and strange and I vowed that these scenes will appear in my movie. The one I'm always planning to make but not really.

I'm finally out of my storage place once and for all. My dad is a whiz with a rope. I sometimes forget he used to be a sailor. Nautical Sam with his pipe and his helm. I like that picture. I get seasick, but I'd sail to the ends of the earth with my daddy. Anyway, his knot-tying skills came in handy as we made our three ambitious trips to and from the storage unit with his truck. What a dusty, dirty, spider carcass-infested, doom-and-gloom imparting place that little room was. And how I managed to buy so many sewing patterns, I'll never know. But the desire to have much of that once-prized booty is gone from me. I just want to sell it or burn it or mysteriously lose it in a tornado or a game of cards. My muscles ache from the chore of moving all of it. I would prefer to be less burdened. Temporarily, my boxes will be kept in my parents' orchid house. And that's something. That my parents' new home has an orchid house. We're moving on up.

My life is like a warehouse for Pandora's boxes. And I'm always having to open them. You know. For quality purposes.

I pulled a 40-hour day this week, laboring all the while at things that made me feel small and powerless, fragile and shrapnel-pocked, as I watched the hours pass and realized that I would not be able to race ahead towards sleep before the next lap. Pushing yourself to the point of breaking has its merits, if only scientifically. It's such a misery, it almost makes you prideful.

I found a great many things that had been lost to me for a long time. Finding them was a curse. A reminder of other losses. A way of causing the value of them to appreciate. Markers of milestones in a foolish girl's journey. However far I have come, I don't seem to have managed to get anywhere.

My dad and I drank egg nog and he told me stories and it felt good to be his little girl again.

There, now. You're all caught up.

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