Have you seen previews for that new movie The Invention of Lying? It looks hilarious and has a star-studded cast, as they say. The premise is that no one in the world lies. They just tell the ugly truth bluntly all the time. I saw a preview where a waiter walks up to their table in a restaurant and says, "I can't believe I work here. You're pretty. Too pretty for your date. Can I take your order?"
Sunday, September 27, 2009
Posted by Penny Lane at 5:41 PM
Saturday, September 12, 2009
I'm fuckin' grouchy.
I don't know what it is. I guess the stress is getting to me. This semester is positively going to be the hardest yet. I haven't had a semester with so much work. I have an average of two papers due every week, and just thinking about it is making me more irritable and angrier. I'm used to having more to do than is possible to get done, but nothing close to the amount of work facing me in the next 3 1/2 months. And it all just makes me feel less like myself. And less like anyone else.
My jaw is clenched, I'm having trouble sleeping, I think I have a permanent scowl, and I really just want to be grumpy and all alone. The bf is being, as usual, absolutely perfect, which is also for some inexplicable reason irritating. I'm so ridiculously grouchy I can only laugh at myself.
Last night, we went to dinner with his friends. In total, there were ten of us. I like his friends, I do. They're kind and always make an effort to talk to me and make me feel welcome. But I also feel hella uncomfortable around them. They've been friends for 12 years. They're all married to their college sweetheart. And they've only lived in Atlanta and nowhere else. Honestly, I find it all a bit creepy. I'm the person I am today because I left home. I'm also the person I am today because I had several years to be on my own and really get to know myself.
I feel so judgmental and awful about these feelings, but I can't help it. I just think it's all so weird. I don't know people like this, who never left home, who've spent every weekend with the same people for more than a decade straight. There's really nothing wrong with it, they're good people, but it still just creeps me the F out.
I have two friends who married their college sweethearts. They're old friends and friends I see once a year and probably talk to two or three times a year. One of them married a guy she started dating at 19. But then at 22, she moved 8 hours away from him to a city and state far from anyone familiar. Three years later, they got married and he joined her, but she still had those years of independence to explore herself and experience something challenging and new. The other friend started dating her husband at about 21, and after college, they moved across the country together and lived in California for a few years. Then they moved again, this time to Texas, and after a couple years there, they got married. Yes, they experienced these changes together, but at least they took a chance on themselves and did something out of the ordinary.
The word that comes to mind is "cute." It's cute that his friends have been with their spouses since they were 19 or 20. It's cute that they live in the same town they grew up in and will probably never live anywhere else. It's cute that their social lives still revolve around the same group of friends that they did at 18. It's like an old movie or TV show or something. It's old-fashioned and traditional and conventional...and creepy.
The worst of it all really is that every time I'm with them, it's always in a large group, and they always reminiscence about people and events that I know nothing about. After they share a few good laughs, someone will notice that I'm staring around blankly and between fits of laughter, they'll recount the "hilarious" story to me. I'm always on the outside looking in. And I always will be. Part of me doesn't care, I think to myself, "Well, I'm never going to know all these stories, I'm never going to be part of this group, and I'm never going to be as close with them as they are with each other."
Last night, out of ten people seven of them went to college together. And the other two went to nearby colleges and started dating someone in the group when they were 19. And then there's me, the ultimate outsider. They tease me for being a Tennessee fan, for going to a different college. It makes me want to scream that most people in the 21st century don't marry someone that went to their own college.
The other part of me pushes me to continue trying, to stay positive, to not let any of it get me down. Because I love him, and I want to spend the rest of my life with him. Which means I'll also spend it with them. Eventually, they have to stop talking about the good old college days, right? Right?
My only real consolation is that even though my special someone also never left the city in which he was raised, he knows there's something wrong with that and is eager to move somewhere new. Before we met, he tried hard to move to California because it was far away from everything familiar. And just last week, he very seriously asked me if we could live in New York. He loves it there and has been talking about moving there for awhile. My answer? "Yes, yes, yes!"
Anyone see a trash can? I need to throw away my grouchy attitude and put on a smile.
Posted by Penny Lane at 2:28 PM
Friday, September 11, 2009
I miss Gristedes and its miniature aisles and miniature shopping carts.
I miss skyscrapers and a real city skyline.
I miss Smalls, JJ's Diner, B-Bar, Brother Jimmy's, St. Mark's, the Chelsea Hotel and East Sixth's Indian Row.
I miss hailing cabs.
I miss brunch every Sunday no matter what.
I miss walking on city streets on busy days and energetic evenings.
I miss everyone wearing black.
I miss street fairs.
I miss jackets in September...sort-of.
I miss the smells! I'm not a good sniffer. My answer is always, "No," to "Ew! Do you smell that?!" but NYC I can smell. I miss the smell of the subway and the leather of the cabs. I miss the smell of Gray's Papaya and Ray's slices.
I miss the flower stalls on the corner and the flaky croissants from the street vendors.
I miss the pigeons!
I miss street performers that are actually talented.
I miss endless possibilities.
I miss never being alone.
I miss the corner store.
I miss bridges that look like works of art...instead of concrete monstrosities painted yellow.
I miss small artsy theater and bars with gimics.
I miss nights out in the Bowery and SoHo on Saturday afternoons.
I miss you, Manhattan, and I promise to visit soon. Cheers to you and your inextinguishable spirit eight years later.
Friday, September 4, 2009
1. Asking "Is this going to be on the test?"
2. Asking "Are you going to give us a study guide?"
3. Asking "Do I really have to buy the textbook?"
4. When students put their heads on their desk and close their eyes like we're playing Heads Up, 7-Up, and then scowl at me angrily when I wake their lazy asses up. Because I'm bothering them.
5. Falling asleep in class is less annoying than checking Facebook or writing emails.
6. Getting ridiculous emails at the end of the semester that simply read: "hey prof can you change my grade from a c+ to a b-?"
7. Note the lack of capital letters or punctuation in #5. We hate that too. By the way, "you" is not spelled "u." Text speak isn't the way real people talk.
* Sadly, all very true stories.
Posted by Penny Lane at 8:48 AM
Wednesday, September 2, 2009
First, thank you to everyone who responded to my poll last week. And I'm pretty sure it worked as a polite warning so thanks. It's always good to hear your opinions and get your advice. My internet friends are just like real friends! Kinda funny, but true. I've caught myself telling a story a few times that happened to "a friend" and realizing that I actually read it on one of your blogs!
And I should also add that this isn't entirely his fault because I could have (and should have) walked away at any point. Eventually with a few grand gestures, he apologized months later. It was genuine and heartfelt, I believe. We tried to be friends for 3 or 4 years. I know, I know, but we'd known each other since we were 12. And I knew that I was a different person when we dated so maybe the same was true for him. He said he changed, and I loved him. I knew him inside and out and...believed in him, believed he could change. Famous last words.
That's right, I said it. Just like foosball and little girls - Facebook is the devil and the Internet is the devil's playground.
Posted by Penny Lane at 1:56 PM