23 December 2011

My Good Luck

I've always had very good luck. Which is odd, since everyone else seems to have bad luck more often than not. Perhaps I took all their luck away from them. Perhaps I actually deserve this in the form of karma. Or perhaps all this good luck will come back and kick me in the butt with some really bad luck, but I'm still waiting for that to happen.

This is a story of one of those incidents of really good luck. This is how my good luck works.

It came after a string of bad decisions, especially concerning my sleep. First, I took a friends shift at work on my only day off in two weeks. What more, it was an opening shift (6:45) and I was closing the night before (12:15). But I volunteered for it anyway, with the impression that I can just sleep during the day. Which was very unwise, since I know full well that I don't sleep during the day. The night before, I was also closing. I worked until 12:15, went to a party, stayed up until three or something equally ridiculous, went to bed for a few hours, woke up at 7:20, attempted to take another nap during the day, and, after no success, went to work. I worked until 12:15, went home, slept for a few hours, and was back at work at 6:45. In short, I was exhausted.

On my lunch break, I ate what I brought, but was unsatisfied and wandered over to the food court to get some cream cheese ragoons from Panda. And, of course, there was no line, given my good luck. And, of course, I found a seat right away, given my good luck. So I enjoyed those ragoons and headed back to Macy's. Well, there's this candy shop by the foodcourt, and I always pass right by it, but that day I couldn't resits. That day, from my exhaustion and a powerful craving for strawberry gummies, I wandered in to the Sweet Factory.

First, I stood in the middle of the store, glancing around me at all the candy in the way one might look at an unrequited love. I knew full well that I shouldn't have walked in, that a five dollar bag of trifles is not something I want to spend money on. And then I saw it:
                                   Camera pans left.
                                   Zoom in.
                                                  75% OFF ALL CANDY
                                   Zoom out.
                                   Camera pans right.
                                                   75% OFF ALL CANDY
                                   Zoom out.
                                   Zoom out further.
                                   God's eye view.
                                                   I'm surrounded by signs that say
                                                   75% OFF ALL CANDY

So I got myself a bag of delicious for 71 cents.

and it was the last day of their sale

lucky me

09 December 2011


Have you ever had nightmares? Nightmares that repeat over and over again? Nightmares not of monsters but of real life at its worst? I didn't used to have nightmares until just over a year ago.

They started when I was nineteen and a half, just as my twentieth birthday seemed near. But these thoughts - these fears- these started even sooner, before I even turned nineteen. I never thought they'd turn into nightmares, but they did.

They repeat, exactly the same, sometimes more or less vivid. They are nightmares of my 21st birthday. When I wake up from these nightmares, when I spend all day crying because I still feel that fear, it's because these dreams are so real. "Can you imagine?", I beg my friends, "being alone on your 21st birthday?". I don't think they understand. I don't think they can imagine. Me? I don't have to imagine. In my dreams it's real.

In my dreams, it's December 22, 2011. Evening. My sister approaches me occasionally to tell me how jealous she is that I am 21. How excited she is for me to "party it up tonight". I pretend I am excited too. Inside, I am shaking. I cannot breathe straight. I feel sick. I want to disappear, to die. It's my 21st birthday, and I have no friends to go out with.

As the evening draws on, I am scrolling through my cellphone contacts and facebook friends, thinking of who I should message. I've already texted a few or my closer friends, but they are out of town, or working, or out of money. They aren't there, and there's no one else. I have no friends.

I post a hesitant status: "It's my 21st, come hit the bars with me!" or something along those lines. Inviting, only I can't tell anyone I don't have anyone the truth: that I'm alone on my 21st birthday. People "like" my status. People respond: "have fun tonight!" or "I'm so jealous, can't wait to party with you when I turn 21". I'm not alone. But I have no friends.

The night draws on. My sister is preparing for her own party to go to, and I know I have to leave soon. She can't know. She'd look at me in that way, with that insulting pity. Like "why are you so stupid/socially incapable that you can't even have friends". Insult. Pity. There she is, parties every weekend. Of course she thinks I'm inferior. I'm in college, and I don't have any parties to go to. She doesn't care that I'm suffering. She'll tell me how to fix the problem by making me feel worse about myself. She doesn't understand how I struggle.

So I leave. I look up some bars on Yelp and I leave. I take the lightrail downtown. Things get blurry past this point. Not so clear, since I've never been to a bar. I enter. I show my ID. I order a drink-whiskey. The bartender looks at the ID, at me. "Happy birthday". Then he steps away. And I see him, with a few other people, looking back at me, laughing at me. I have no one.