Thursday, October 20, 2005

the bright-light side

In the past week, I have re-read Married: A Fine Predicament, by Anne Roiphe (one week ago, before I had any idea of my own leering tangle); and The Boys of My Youth, by Jo Ann Beard, and this book is the reason I ever applied to Sarah Lawrence's nonfiction program -- I spent this early morning in bed with her essay about her childhood best friend and, twenty years later, their divorces. I have read a novel called Ask Me Anything, by Francesca Delbanco (with a protagonist described in a blurb as "a cross between Holly Golightly and Elizabeth Wurzel"); I have read The Dream-Hunters of Corsica, by Dorothy Carrington, about people -- mazzeri -- who kill animals at night, in their dreams, then look into the animals' faces and recognize, in each one, the face of someone they know. That person will die within the next year. It sounds spooky and impossible to believe as real but it was actually a wonderful book to read on a long (and long-delayed and long-overdue) transatlantic flight.

Good things about going through a period of (un)romantic tumult:
1. You get to drink America's No. 1 root beer in your pajamas and read New York magazine without feeling guilty about not writing your thesis.
2. If you're hungry, you can eat Jell-O without your boyfriend making fun of you by saying, "You're not fooling me. Even I know that making Jell-O isn't the same thing as actually cooking."
3. Your attempt to give up caffeine is given a kick-start by your inability to get dressed and walk down the street. No, that's not true. I totally wouldn't mind putting on pants as long as I didn't have to take off Robert's T-shirt. Oops! Scratch that. I just spilled some raspberry Jell-O down the front.
4. Your close friends are wonderful listeners. Probably they'd get annoyed if this dragged on for too long but right now, if you need them, they are here.

Ummm, I think that's it.

After our workshop yesterday, I stood in the parking lot talking to a woman in my class named Theresa, who works as a florist. Her favorites are garden-grown roses but she told me the meanings of all kinds of flowers and colors (red is for passion, white for purity, pink for romance or chaste affection, yellow for friendship). I said, "I just read about a woman who received a huge vase of orange Gerbera daisies. Isn't that fabulous?" And Theresa said, "Erm, no, because orange doesn't mean anything. People try to make it mean something...but it doesn't. It's the same deal with purple." Then she told me about the kinds of poison that people used to send each other and that rosemary means remembrance. I told her about Robert and she said, "Oh, god. It's not my place to tell you what to do should break up with him." In my head, I said, "No, Theresa, you don't understand. Robert and I are going to get a puppy!"

Today I am meeting with my thesis advisor, going to the gym, and teaching a yoga lesson. Tomorrow my father is coming to visit for the weekend and while I woke up feeling panicked about not being able to be alone and lie prostrate, crying, on my isotonic mattress pad for forty-eight hours, I'm now really looking forward to seeing him. Every year on Valentine's Day, my father sends me tulips.


Blogger Unsane said...

you have a thesis advisor huh?

6:24 AM  
Blogger Sarah said...

Yes, I am only just getting to know him but he is so good -- encouraging and supportive. It's sort of an iffy thing, to write so much about my self and experiences (another teacher is always saying, "There's the ballet! There's socialism! Go write about it.") But my advisor reminds me to write what I want, that I will never please everyone.

I've seen your blog, it is incredible.

8:40 AM  
Blogger Unsane said...

I'm getting two thesis advisors -- that is, if they let me into the graduate programme in English. I think they probably will, although they like to cover their asses by sounding tentative. Then I need to make sure I acquire a scholarship or else I do hard time.

Thanks about my blog -- it is a bit of a bog!

9:44 PM  

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