Flagrant Defiance (100th Post)

This is the 100th post on this blog, which is cool and awesome. I was going to save the 100th Post for the anniversary of this blog, which is in about two weeks, but then I figured aw heck, I have too much to talk about to put it off for two weeks. I’d forget it all. And that’s part of why I keep doing this, is to preserve the record of what I was thinking about. The actual literary value of this blog is not enough to keep it, really.

Except in the case in which it makes me want to write more, which I am finally doing for the first time in forever. YAY. Right now I’m experimenting with an idea in which a woman is moving out of her apartment and starts going through her personal library, and some of the books have memories attached to them which are then explored in flashbacks. The idea is for it all to tie together somehow, each flashback, though I’m not yet sure how that’s going to work out. Maybe it won’t tie together at all and you’ll just explore her backstory, or maybe some of the memories will follow a thread and the others will follow another, or I don’t know. We’ll see where that goes.

Just as an aside, talking about the heroine of the story as a woman felt really weird. I do not refer to myself as a woman, and when I think about doing so, it feels weird and it also feels like it will always feel weird, and maybe I’ll refer to myself as a girl until I’m eighty-three. When I think of women I think of my mother and grandmothers and various aunts and teachers and people like that. I don’t think of me or of most of my female peers as women. I wonder if/when that will change.

Continuing in the interrupted vein that was fiction writing, I had a dream that made me want to write some more, but it continued another vein that runs through my dreams, particularly recently, in which I dream about people dying. Twice I’ve dreamed that my younger sister died, once a couple of guys I graduated with but didn’t know very well. Since my grandfather died I’ve had more than one dream in which we were in Minneapolis in time to see him before he died and then in my dream he would die, which is not how it happened in real life. I also dreamed recently that my father went nuts and started shooting various family members, which, unless I’m seriously behind on the news from home, also did not happen. And last night I dreamed that Hannah died…and then called me from hell. It was weird. But it was also weirdly inspiring. So I think I want to try writing about the Phone Call from Hell which was not very hellish but rather reassuring, as I think, in the dream, she died knowing she was going to die, like it was intentional, but then she called me from hell to let me know she was okay. Which seems a bit like Hannah’s general MO: she might be in hell, but she’ll call to let you know she’s okay. Eventually.

The next thing I want to talk about is laundry. Last night, in the glories of my roommateless room, I took the mattress off what used to be her bed and made a drying rack out of the frame. It was an effort to save quarters on dryers so I could wash my sheets as well. I basically felt like a boss. Though I think a clothesline would be a pretty worthwhile investment, this’ll do for now. I slept on a slightly damp sheet last night, with my comforter cover still drying over the top of my roommate’s dressers, so I had a couple of fleece blankets. It was actually a pretty nice feeling to kick off the duvet for a while. But I don’t think I’ll make it a routine. In a characteristically thoughtless move, I left my wet swimsuit on my bed and there’s a big damp spot on my sheet now which may or may not dry before I go to bed, but I’ll deal with that when I get there. I’m just really pleased with my makeshift drying rack skills.

Every day this week so far I’ve done something that I usually don’t do and which is therefore a bit of an accomplishment. On Monday I swam a mile. On Tuesday I survived. Just kidding, although it was rough. What I actually did was brave the washing out of my underwear (I usually avoid that) and create a drying rack out of basically every piece of furniture in my room. And today I didn’t actively try to avoid talking to someone. Talking to a guy.

I went to the pool to work out, and I asked this guy in highlighter orange trunks if he would mind sharing a lane with me since it was full up, and he said not at all, so I got in. And then I was in the middle of a butterfly lap when I stopped for a breather and looked over at him while adjusting my goggles, and he said, “What’s your name?”

So I told him, and I asked his name, and he told me, and I said it was nice to meet him, because it was. And then he said, “I’m going to take a wild guess and say you’ve swum before.”*

Cue the smug smile.

Anyway, I chatted with a guy and I didn’t want to run away from him. And that was probably a good thing.

Now, what other soul-shakingly terrifying things can I make myself do this week?

*I don’t actually remember if he said swam or swum. Not that it’s, you know, noteworthy or anything.


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