AJAX BELL

Author of the Queen City Boys books


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rambling ramble time

I can’t sleep, despite having been up until at least 5 am. I’m avoiding calling my mom and telling her about the robbery because she’s on vacation and I don’t want to worry her. Plus, I guess it will just seem more real after telling her. Of course there’s a possibility she’s reading this, so, um, sorry Ma, I’ll call you after coffee when I’m feeling a little more put together.

Since I can’t sleep, here are the things that are keeping me awake:

When I got in my car last night, I saw the kids who robbed me down the street. My first instinct was to get in my car, lock the doors and be on my way ASAP (this is my normal response to being outside at 1 am, alone, and seeing anyone). I hesitated though. I started to click the lock thing on my key fob, but then I remembered that if you do that inside the car it sets off the alarm, so I reached for the actual door lock and right as I was about to click it the dudes pulled my car door open and pulled me out of the car.

In retrospect, maybe I should have set off the alarm, it might have sent them running the other way. I had my keys in my hand the entire time, even after they pulled from the car and forced me to the ground behind the car (I really thought they were going to take the car too, and I’m very glad they didn’t). I could have hit the alarm button at any time, but I didn’t, because they had a gun, and they were very shaky and scared, and I thought setting off the alarm would put me in more personal danger. However, if I’d hit it that second in the car, before they opened the door, it might have made a difference.

A bunch of the guys who where in the bar last night were regulars, who I see a lot. When I went back in to get Boss Daddy to call the cops, they were all hovering around me worrying, etc. Two of them had watched me walk to my car, to make sure I was safe when I left. They saw me get in my car and turned around, went back to their conversation. The guys who robbed me were 100+ feet further down the road, just out of eyesight of the bar window, so while, from the window, I appeared safe in my car, I wasn’t. I believe all the male patrons at the bar feel really guilty for not having walked me to my car. The cop who responded had just cruised by less than 10 minutes before I got robbed. Other bar patrons, also friends of mine, rolled up 5 minutes or less after it happened. I didn’t feel any less safe walking to my car than I ever do. It was just freak accident of time that I was alone, right there, in that moment, in that physical space where no one was watching. I did everything I was trained to do, growing up in an urban environment: had my keys in my hand (so I could get straight into my car with out digging for them), walked with purpose and confidence, locked the car door as soon as I was inside (well, not fast enough, but I couldn’t have been much faster), complied quickly and calmly with the robbers (didn’t argue or freak out). I was in a well lit area, right under a street light, a few dozen feet from a bar with a dozen people inside. But yes, someone probably should have walked me to my car. Still it feels more like freak circumstances that allowed it to happen, like a lightning strike. Not necessarily inevitable, but unexpected, circumstantial and somehow unavoidable.

I’ve never really been one for could have beens. In the aftermath (standing around with the cops for eternity), several people were like, “you could have been shot!” Well, yes, I mean they had a gun, and assuming it was real, I could have been shot. But I wasn’t. And honestly, I’ve heard people who have been in similar situations say how terrifying it was because in the moment they knew they could die, or be or raped or anything could happen. And I didn’t feel like that at all. I felt instantly shocked, angry and resigned. I never really felt like they were going to shoot me. They were scared and they wanted out of there quickly as much as I wanted them out of there. I don’t know. I mean, I’m not saying it wasn’t terrifying, but I think that the sense some people get that anything could have happened, or that they feel really violated is because the person robbed was acutely aware of their loss of control of the situation, complete loss of control of their life, even for a few seconds. And I just don’t feel that way. Well not today anyway, I reserve the right to change how I feel about this a dozen times until I’ve dealt with it, but right now, I don’t feel any less safe than I did yesterday. Sure there’s a sense of violation, yes I’m fucking pissed about having to replace all my shit, but mostly, man, stuff happens. I can’t really control my own life, there’s too many outside factors. I spend most my meditative time letting things go. I think I can let this go too.

I really liked my wallet. I mean, yes, it’s good I’m safe, material things are really unimportant, blah blah blah. But I really liked that wallet and it’s pretty irreplacable.

I am a little disappointed in myself on one count. I spent a lot of time laying awake last night, post robbery, thinking about how alone I was. I mean, recent break-up, just days ago, and I had this sense of horrible loneliness like there was no one I could call, because I had no one to cuddle up with in the aftermath. And honestly, I don’t think I’m that girl, that needs a man to make things better. There’s tons of people I could have called (although I actually couldn’t since the fuckers took my phone) any time of day or night. Ladybug came right out, in her PJs, to get me and stand around with me while cops blathered on endlessly and fingerprinted my car. I have plenty of people around me to take care of me. I can take care of myself and I don’t even need to because of the aforementioned people. I feel weak for having spent time being self-pitying over being single. I feel vaguely stupid that a bad situation highlighted that in my thoughts. Then again, it’s okay, I guess. I mean being broken up with is also a loss of control of the circumstances of one’s life, so it does all sort of blend together.

Now I will go re-enter numbers into my phone until I have to get dressed and go back to work again. hopefully I’ll get a nap in before it’s that time.

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moving on down that broken, unsteady, rough road

Breaking up is always shitty.  Sometimes it’s worse than others.  Worst when you get what amounts to a ‘it’s not you it’s me’ from some one you were really, really into. Blah blah blah blah it takes time to get over it.  And hey, I’m very patient person, but waiting for the pain to pass is one of the things I just can’t abide.  I’ve done two days of not getting dressed or showering.  Taking pills to sleep so I don’t lay awake crying and wondering what is wrong with me.  All the dishes are done.  Laundry done and put away. MP3s tagged and sorted.  Computer files cleaned and organized.  Tons of crap food eaten.  The blinds are hung on the porch.  The trash is out.  Tons of bad TV and movies watched.  Yes, any time is way too long to fuck off.  And yet, two days isn’t enough.  But then a week isn’t enough, a month isn’t enough.  So I stop at two days.  Get back to life, back on the horse, oh fuck me, but it’s got to be done.  And sure yeah, maybe I’ll get over it faster if I’m busy.  Maybe not.  I’m torn between obsessively throwing myself into work and ignoring everything else.  Or.  What?  I don’t know.  Throw screaming temper tantrums at the universe for being unfair?  Pout, mope and generally be unpleasent and unbearable to be around?  Meditate on what lesson I can take from this?  Ugh.  Work it is.

Today is the first day of the rest of my life.  My horoscope for today:

Creativity and the more enjoyable side of life are going to be a central feature for you for awhile. Let details take care of themselves and take the time to enjoy yourself and stretch out both at work and play. When something feels right, whether it be a new idea or the opportunity to just have a good time, roll with the feeling and don’t put on the brakes.

If that isn’t a license to dress slutty and drink whiskey then I don’t know what is.

I think the most horrible part of breaking up is how you don’t realize that you spend all day mentally cataloging things that you want to tell that person.  As  soon as you can’t tell them anymore, you can’t seem to stop coming up with things to tell them. It’s like this constant reminder of what you’ve lost.

I’ve eaten now, and finished my coffee.  So I will go shower and dress.  I will finish the work I didn’t do yesterday, go to lunch with the divine Miss M.  I will do even more work this afternoon and then it’s off to the restaurant.  I will not think about the break up for as long as I can because I am so tired of crying, I just don’t want to do it anymore.  I will concentrate on how awesome my friends are.  And work.  And trying to crush down the loneliness so at least it only feels numb.

Song for the day: Colin Hay – Storm in My Heart (click to download)


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It’s the little things that count

Songs for today:

Cry – The V-Roys (click to download)

I’m Yours if You Want Me – Chris Thile (click to download)

I’m miserable today. No, I don’t want to talk about it. And it’s isn’t just me, a bunch of my friends have been sick or injured lately, a couple lost their jobs. Gas prices. The economy is grim. Blah blah blah blah.

So instead of me continuously dwelling on all that and my own current personal problems, let’s look at the good. (I am not Rebecca of Sunnybrook farm, butgodfuckingdamnit, I am going to look at the bright side if it kills me).

  • The weather in middle Tennessee is GORGEOUS right now. Perfect. Delicious for walking and running in. Beautiful for sitting in. This is the gift we get for the tortuous heat and the ugly winters. It is worth it.
  • We are getting a hammock. Porch sitting in a hammock. Does it get better than that?
  • I’m pushing forward, albeit somewhat slowly, but forward nonetheless, on the new websites. Fear me and the HCT/SROTS girls. We will be media moguls soon. Ruling the world here we come!
  • The art jewelry I’m making is getting closer and closer to perfect. It looks in real life like it does in my head! Hurrah. Working on getting much more made so I can be a rich fashion entreprenuer as well as media mogul.
  • I have dozens of episodes of Scrubs on the DVR to watch instead of feeling sorry for myself so that’s awesome.
  • Miss Sparkle and Ladybug are the best friends ever.  They bring me foodstuffs and ice creams and listen to me whine.  That’s what real love is, people.
  • I have the best momma ever.  And the best sister.  And my extended family is pretty freaking cool too.
  • My toenails are painted a pretty bizarre green color not found in nature.


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At least I have you, tomato

The proper order of things in the morning is: pee, find clothing, make coffee, drink a little coffee, make food, get on the internets.  If this master order of things is deviated from bad things can happen.  Like say if I start checking mail and blogs before coffee, I get sucked into the weirdest things.

This morning, while attempting coffee, I dropped a cup on my foot, tried to put coffee grounds in the coffee maker without first putting in a filter (caught myself just in time), started the coffee maker without putting in water, etc.   Now I really need that coffee.

My landlord does some lame things.  Not very many, or very often, in fact so rarely that I am going to give him the benefit of the doubt this time and blame the idiot landscaping guys.  The new complex next to us is almost finished and businesses in it are starting to open (YAY smoothie shop!).  The bushes in front of my yard are very hard to see around when pulling out of my driveway, or the new complex.  And though it does cause a loss of some of my privacy on my porch and in my yard, it is not unreasonable to cut them back so folks can see oncoming traffic when pulling out.  I assume my landlord told the idiot landscaping guys to cut the bushes.  I assume the landlord meant the bushes along the front of the property.  The landscaping guys–the same ones who tried to weedwhack out all the blooming tulips, who once cut the cable line where it comes into the house, who I really think are idiots–yes, those landscaping guys, cut down all the bushes in the front yard.  Thus even further reducing my privacy, and eliminating much of the shade on my porch.

The loss of privacy and shade is extra sucky because, as I said, there are now businesses going in next door, which means more traffic.  Previously we had lots of natural cover and shade around the porch and no people at all next door.  ARGH!  Also we just got a hammock for the porch.  Nothing says relaxing while laying on one’s own porch as people pass by and peer at you.  Ugh.

Yes, I am purchasing bamboo shades for much of the porch.  Yes, I am pissy about it.  Yes, I am sure it’ll all be fine in the end.  It’s out of my control anyway. I did ask the land lord to put a motion sensor light over our driveway, so at least the cars, hopefully, won’t get broken into again and I can have some light when I come home in the middle of the night. And hey, I can hear the guys out there banging around and putting it up right now.

GRUMP GRUMP GRUMP

Hmm, I have coffee now.  The next question is, should I have ice cream for breakfast or make something a little more healthy?

Despite the pre-coffee grumps, and yesterday’s mostly foul mood, there are definitely good things in my life.  Work is okay.  I mean, waiting tables isn’t rocket science, and the economy sucks, but overall, I still love it.  Whopperjaw remains charming and entertaining.  Which is awesome, but also he is cute, so I might keep him around even after the shiny charm wears off. Heh.  Poor Ladybug has been sick, but she seems on the mend and we’ve got the awesome Nashtastic coming this weekend.  And it’s Tomatofest!  And the weather report fo rthe weekend? “Sunny and delightful.” that is to say, not hot for the the tomato fun. Wheee!


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so much time, so much not getting done

This is a post I started on Saturday and got so scattered that I never finished it:

I’m going to go out on a limb and say I have PMS, since this just made me cry (watch the video, don’t skip it).

I am very scattered today. I keep thinking, “Oh I need to do X,” and then I’m go make a cup of coffee and entirely forget what X is. So I ‘ll start to do Y and think of something else in the middle of it, leave it and start thinking about X again, with the intention to write it down, but get distracted by Z and start the whole process over again. UGH. Seriously, it is hard to be me sometimes.

Now it’s Monday and I am still scattered as I was two days ago. Whopperjaw came through town yesterday. I made Thai curry, both green and red, yum yum yum. And then we took Ladybug to See Batman on the Imax screen. YAY BATMAN. I have complaints about it, but they are so minor and bizarre that I expect anyone listening to my complaints would just roll their eyes at me. I did totally love it.

This morning Whopperjaw and I were having breakfast in this little diner in my neighborhood, and the cashier, an older gentleman, was asking me all about my tattoos. Finally, done, he turned to Whopperjaw and said, “You got your hands full with this one.” WJ snickered, and all the way to the car he nattered on about how it so nice to have someone else recognized the trials of his life, having his hands full with me. Hmmm, I am perhaps not relaying this as amusing as it really was.

Okay, off to the craft store. I got things to do today and I have to start somewhere!


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Happy Birthday, America.

All in all a good long weekend.  Whopperjaw came up to play.  We had a nice dinner with Ladybug and Miss Sparkle on Thursday night and then drank WAY too much wine.  We shopped and hung out on Friday, made tons and tons of Middle Eastern food, ate with our new neighbors (two fabulous gay boys), went and watched the fireworks and generally just chilled.  Saturday we saw Hancock (ignore the reviews, it was very entertaining and I’m not just saying that because of my ridiculous love for Will Smith), then went to the park, cooked more, ate more and chilled more.  Today was similar. So basically, Whopperjaw=food, chillin’ and relaxing.  Can’t really go wrong with that.

Now Ladybug and I are finally watching the season finale of Supernatural, and I’m sitting around feeling sorry for myself because I’m not getting the work done I need to (I just can’t find the damn answers I need) and ’cause Whopperjaw is back in Memphis and things seem a little less, well, chill than when he’s here.

The next week is work work work and hopefully finishing everything before my sister gets here for 10 days.

Everyone else have a good fourth? Anything fun?