Vanity or Sanity?

February 17, 2012

“I’ll trade your vanity for my sanity.” I said to Marcus in 1995.

We never made the trade.

I’ve had another blah day today. I had to do a “Stress test” at my Cardiologist early this morning. My mom likes to take me there to make sure I am ok etc. I slept at my mom’s last night.

I was instructed not to drink caffeine for 12 hours before and no smoking after midnight last night. Yes, I have a heart condition and I started smoking again. Not even close to half as much as I used to. I don’t drink that much coffee. But that’s not the point. It was rough waking up and staying up then going for a stress test. I was stressed from not having coffee and smoking.

I was there for over 3hours and or was mostly waiting around and 2 photo sessions after putting fluid in me for the machine. The only “test” I took was a 10-15 minute treadmill until my hear rate was up to 150 beats a minute. The Doctor was fun to look at except for her wedding ring. Well, it was a nice wedding ring. You get the idea.

I left there so groggy for some reason. Mom took me food shopping. She took me. I paid. Ha. Then we did lunch and I finally bought a coffee. A “French Toast Latte” actually, with 4 shots of espresso. I drank up and had a smoke finally. Ahh. I drank the whole thing and my ass was still dragging.

I came home with mom. I sleep here some Friday nights so I can help my uncle Saturday mornings. I helped my mom with a few things and cleaned out my broken down car in her driveway. I donated it to Purple Heart and they are picking it up on Monday.

It’s a sad loss. I loved that car but it needs too much work and I can’t afford it right now. I did score a bunch of coins from it. SO I took a walk to the bank to cash them in. TD bank charges 6% on the coin machine if you don’t have an account with them. I’ve and accounts with them for years even when they were Commerce Bank and they never charged. Now I don’t have an account and they charged me over a dollar and I ended up with just under 17 dollars. Oh well, it was still found money.

I took a walk into town to get some smokes and splurge on a Starbucks coffee (half decaf at this point) since I had some extra money. Chatted with the friendly kid at CVS I see every week about cigarettes mostly. My old friend from when I worked at Starbucks was working and we chatted it up a bit. One of the girls I used to see there almost every night a couple years back looked up at me and smiled. I smiled back. I used to think she was cute. She still is. I just don’t always think about these things all of the time. Just at my Doctor today.

“Are you the same guy..?” She asked then paused.

“That used to be her every night? Yes.” I answered.

“You lost a lot of weight. You look great.” She said.

I thanked her and almost told he she looked good too but wasn’t sure if that’s what I’m supposed to say or not anymore. I talked to her while she made my drink.

“You used to drive that big red car right?” She asked.

“Yeah. I’m not driving it now.” I said.

“What are you driving?”

“Nothing.”

“Where do you live now?”

“Fairview.”

“Where’s that?”

“ It’s on the edge of Camden near Collingswood. Where do you live?”

“Bellmawr.”

“Cool. Nice seeing you again.”

“Great to see you. Stop in more.”

I took my drink in a great mood. I gained a little of my weight back in the past month and have been a little self-conscious. I hadn’t shaved in a week and my hair was un-kept today so “looking good” was the last thing on my mind. It felt good to hear it. When I first lost the weight after a month or so recovering from my heart surgery months ago I was so confident. I was able to wear clothes I couldn’t fit into for over 4 years. That faded away fast with other priorities making me forget.

It occurred to me that I didn’t even feel bad about not having a car or even a job because “I looked good” to quote my friend John, even when I was at my worst.

I guess it was a good day. Because other people’s opinion’s of my looks makes me feel better than my accomplishments.

In reality I’d rather have created something like a piece of art, poetry or a novel than look good but I was nice to hear it.

I’ll keep my sanity (the little I have) and you can keep your vanity.


Good Day Bad Day

July 17, 2010

I woke up today in a great mood. For no reason. I didn’t even do my morning meditations yet. I was friendly to my mother as I made my coffee as apposed to the usual grumpiness I express with my “leave me alone” face. I did my morning meditations and drank some reheated coffee from last night as I waited for the fresh coffee to brew. I smoked on my grueling hot porch and it didn’t seem to bother me today. I jumped right into the project I started last night.

I decided that while I am waiting for the designer to finish up the designs for my novel that I would move on to another project. I actually have two more book projects. First I started to collect my poetry, stories and journals from the past six years into a book. I started to work on that while I was waiting to get the photo shoot together for the book cover for Yellow Socks. Second I found the disc with all of my Serial killer Coloring Books on there a few weeks ago. The problem is that they are in PDF files formatted for an 11 x 17 magazine. I had to figure a way to convert them to a Microsoft Word document or jpg. Thank God for google. I found an online converter that was free and started with the first issue of my Serial Killer Coloring Book.

I spent last night converting the first issue and all of today cropping and resizing the files for uploading to be published. Today I jumped right into cropping the pics and saving them. I was having a great time.

The cleaning lady came over and didn’t annoy me like she usually does. I was more cordial that usual to her. The mailman was friendly. Even the lawn care guys didn’t bother me. I was on a roll.

My friend stopped by for our weekly twelve step reading and talking. That went well. We were both in god spirits. He left after an hour or so stay then I went back to work on the editing and cropping. It was going well until the internet kept going in and out and I was having problems with my power cord on my computer. Even though it’s a laptop I try and keep it plugged in even if I’m out on the porch. It kept going in and out. I started to get frustrated between the internet and the power cord. I didn’t want to take a break until I finished my project. I was debating on and off going to the Apple store but it’s Saturday and it’s in the mall. I hate malls especially on a Saturday and after working in one for so many years. I thought I got the cord to work and a half an hour later it went out again. Fuck it. I grabbed my laptop, my cords and the box I bought it in and off to the Apple store I went. To the dreaded mall I drove.

The store was crowded as usual but I got service right away. I had to speak to a specialist and he figured out I needed a new cord and replaced free of charge. He also cleaned the almost two years of filth of f of my keyboard and screen for me. I love the Apple store. I love my Macbook.

Luckily there is an entrance and exit right across from the store so I didn’t have to deal with too many people. I walked down the deserted hallway getting a cigarette ready to smoke and then I saw Nancy. Nancy is a cook at the Bistro. The restaurant that fired me. Actually she makes the salads. She was happy to see me and me her. She is a cute chubby Mexican girl in her mid twenties. I always liked her. Her English isn’t the best but she tries real hard and it improved a lot since I first met her.

I asked her if she was happy. She started to cry and tell me how much she hates her job. It gets too busy and she needs help keeping up with the orders. She said the manager yells at her a lot. I felt bad. I hugged her. She looked so lost and confused. I hate to see a woman cry. I almost wanted to cry. I tried to explain to her that I hated my job there too because I didn’t like it when It was busy. She had trouble understanding. I wanted to grab her and take her home with me and take care of her. If I could have I would have.

It was huge reminder of how lucky I am that I am not working there. Even though I have no job, it beats the job I had. Most people hate their jobs but not this much. It was crazy the amount of work and energy I put in when it was busy. I had countless panic and anxiety attacks while trying to keep up with the constant order taking, serving food and cleaning tables while the next party was waiting. Sometimes I’d have four or five parties sit at tables before I had a chance to even think about cleaning them. I thank Nancy for the reminder. I also will pray for her. She was so sad.

My life went on for the day. I went window-shopping at Best Buy for cameras and video cameras. I wasted a lot of the sales girl’s time because the one I wanted wasn’t compatible to a Mac. I left and went to Starbucks. I was still a little anxious and sad.

Once I got home I felt a lot better again. I was back to work on my projects. I kept in mind that my mood will pass and it did. It always does. Sometimes it just takes a little longer than others.

Hopefully, I’ll have a few books published within the next month and then I’ll probably keep moving along. Hmm. I already forgot about Nancy. No I didn’t. I hope she finds happiness too.


Chainsaw Suicide

June 10, 2010

I knew Nadia briefly when we worked together at Starbucks. She was a decent barista but a real good person. When everyone else was making fun of me or avoiding me she was always nice and sometimes even flirted with me. I guess you could say I had a little crush on her. She was a petite girl with beautiful brownish hazel eyes and long dark hair she kept tied up at work. I never saw her out of her Starbucks uniform but imagined her to have a nice body. I never had the balls to ask her out even though we took breaks together and ate lunch together.

That was years ago and I haven’t thought much about her in years until I was reading the paper the other day. There was an article with a headline that read “Chainsaw suicide 27 year old Nadia Clifford takes her own life with a chainsaw.” I was shocked and I cried a bit. Wow. I knew her and what a way to go. After the shock wore down a little and I finished the article I realized it never explained how she pulled that off.

How does one kill them selves with a chainsaw? Did she hold it in front of her and chop off her own head? Did she thrust it into her chest? Did she secure it on a table and run head first into it? Or run neck first? Chest first? Maybe she secured it on a table and ran backwards into it so she didn’t have to see it coming? I wanted to know for some morbid reason. I needed to know.

I wrote the newspaper and haven’t heard back yet. I was going to look up her family and ask them but that would be in bad taste. The funeral is this week maybe I’ll go and see if I can find out there.

I should be praying for her family. I should be wondering why a nice young good-looking woman would end her own life. I should be mourning her in some way but I just keep wondering how does someone commit a chainsaw suicide? My curiosity will probably never be satisfied.

NOTE: I just googled “chainsaw suicide” and there apparently many cases of this form of killing one’s self. I thought I’d heard about everything.


%d bloggers like this: