21 March 2008

my magical life

just a few minutes ago, my bff told me, "you're oozing self-confidence and magic right now". he's hardly unbiased and it's kind of his job to think i'm the greatest person in the world (though we'd both agree that he holds the moral superiority card for reasons i'm happy to enumerate, but can easily summarize in one example. when we're at a party and i say, "bff, i've had too much to drink and have to go home right now," he says, "okay, let's go" and we leave. when we're at a party and he says, "bff, i've had too much to drink and need to go home," i say, "call a cab".)

the thing is, i have my moments of not feeling the magic. it's kinda scary sometimes to wake up knowing i don't have a job, that the amount of money i have in the bank isn't all that much, that my life isn't exactly cheap, and that i'm running around the country on a campaign trail that will not result in a paycheck. it happened earlier this week and i freaked and had to burrow away in my little hole of refuge. and i know it's okay to freak out sometimes, cuz it makes me appreciate the magic all the better when i can step back and see just how magical my life is right now.

1) job-o-non
though it's a little bit scary when i think about running out of money without a job, lemme just tell y'all how amazing it is to sleep till noon every day, watch the heck out of political shows (and college basketball right now), blog to my little heart's content, and not even think twice about accepting offers to go "out" on weeknights. also, i love staying up late every night. i feel like an 8th grader on summer vacation.

2) team obama
when i first decided i wanted to join the campaign, i had my sight set on indiana. it's not just that indiana is going to play a role in this primary election, but my family is there. i want to hang with the family and do something meaningful for my country all at the same time. and it would be a total misrepresentation if i said, "this is falling into my lap," because i have been on the horn, on email, all over obama.com, making connections, reconnecting with my galveston team, pulling things together, kinda working my buns off to make this happen. but now that it's all coming together, it just feels magical. with nick's unwavering support and dedication to this effort, we have essentially rebuilt our galveston team for evansville for obama. and we are going to be amazing. and we're going to bring our magic to evansville (a city whose local team already exemplifies the magic i'm talking about).

3) getting a real job
i started applying for a day job immediately after i left biglaw. even though i wasn't sure i wanted to end up back in the corporate world, i needed to open doors and make sure i was leaving them open as my adventure unfolded. i may make some seemingly irresponsible choices, but i'm not dumb. and just because i wear rose-colored glasses every day of my life does not mean i am blind to the realities of life as a grown-up. i've been interviewing, have had some half-hearted meetings, and have had some truly wonderful doors open up.

4) finding the real me
having this time off has given me an opportunity to really get in touch with who i am and what i want out of life. a few months ago, i was so angry with the way my career was (not) developing, i was in doubt mode. i wasn't sure i wanted to stay in my field, wasn't sure i wanted to stay in my city, wasn't sure about much of anything. it's kinda crazy how much good a little bit of time off can be for the soul... cuz now i know.

i know i want to stay in my field, but that i want to build a program instead of maintaining something a predecessor has built. i want to stay in los angeles because i love it here. it's beautiful and neat-o and i love the smell of jasmine in random places. i love my friends, that my bff is right down the music box steps, and that my favorite boy is just a few winding roads away. i love being me, the best me i've ever been, and i love that i'm so in love with the adventure life has become.

so yeah, my bff is right. even though i sometimes have my doubts and can't always see it is so, i am oozing with self-confidence because i've never been happier with the me i've become. and i'm oozing with magic because all of my dreams are coming true, because i have the self confidence to believe that YES I CAN make them come true...

18 March 2008

crybaby day on the music box steps

i woke up this morning, feeling the woes of the world atop my shoulders, the woes of my own world seemingly overwhelming, and an urgent need to burrow away in my little hole of refuge. i didn't sleep at home last night, so it was a race to beat my tears to my front door, and i only just made it, before sinking down into my couch and letting it all out (whatever "it" is). when i came up for a breather, i opened my computer, and had twenty emails about barack obama's speech on race from pennsylvania this morning.

when the whole ferrara bit began, people around me kept saying obama would do best by ignoring it and moving on. what? it's best to deal with real problems we each face every day of our lives, by sweeping them under the rug, by pretending they don't exist, by furthering the divide that creates the problems. i thought (and said), "hell no he won't" (as in do or say nothing). obama isn't the guy who runs away from a problem because it's scary. he's the guy that says (and i paraphrase using symbolism that means something to me), "yeah, i'm scared of heights. that's exactly why i'm going to the grand canyon to stand on the edge of a bazillion mile drop, and i'm going to look down." i'm going to be overwhelmed by every single nauseating, terrifying moment of that feeling i am falling, plummeting to a death so far below that i cannot even see it. you bet your ass that i'm going to make sure someone is there holding me so i don't actually fall, but i'm going to look fear in its face and i'm going to say, "fuck you!" (and i'll probably cry and freak out a bit cuz i am me and have flipper tendencies). but i'm going to do it. you know why? because i'm brave.

it's the same reason barack obama did what he did this morning. because he's brave. because for all america talks about how far it's come, "hey look, world, we have a woman and a black guy running for president. we're good." and yeah, we are good. that's amazing. we have a woman and a black man running for president. but it doesn't meant that all the reasons that kept a woman and a black man for running from president before this year, aren't still problems. it just happens that we have two very brave people, who happen to be a woman and a black man, telling racists, bigots, fear-mongerers, idiots, republicans, and the rest of us, "fuck you!" and of these two people, i hope that both but i know one of them is gonna deal the hand we all have to play to clean up the messes of our forefathers and father time.

and we can. and we will. why? because we are americans! we spilled our blood to build a country the rest of the world would want to follow. we spilled our blood again to extend the "idea" of freedom to everyone who lived here. and i know there are idiots out there who believe that we are spilling our blood now in furtherance of "freedom" (i'm just wise enough to know that george bush and his other greedy friends don't give a shit about freedom (see patriot act) and that iraq is about texas tea). the bottom line is that we'd all agree that we spill our blood for what's right (or at least mean to). and putting an end to the racial divide is right. and it needs to start happening RIGHT NOW!

the world has become so politically correct, we've muzzled ourselves so as not to offend. but what's that done? i'll tell you what it's done. it's ended conversations, it's nipped positive banter in the bud, it's allowed our desegregation to flourish under the guise of protection.
look, we're all messed up, we all need something to blame, someone to blame. so we segregate ourselves into little groups, focus on what makes us different, and we blame each other for those differences. and until we stop focusing on the negative differences, we won't stop giving each other reasons to blame each other. we won't realize that it's all about our personal choice, and that which divides us will continue and grow in width and depth.

i, personally, am not a blamer. my problems are all my own doing and will have to be undone by me. i don't need to blame my friends or my enemies, my family, rich white people, or all the minorities in the ghetto for my problems. cuz they're mine. i made my choices, sometimes they turned out to have not been great choices and i have to do a whole lot of cleaning, but sometimes they turn out better than anything i could ever have imagined. i'm lucky to know this. i'm lucky to know i can and do own my own destiny. and it breaks my heart to know that so many people in america and the world do not know they possess the power of choice. that they blame others for their lot in life because there's never been a chance for it to be any other way. they don't know they have a choice. and they will never know they possess such power unless those of us in possession show them the way.

problem is, we've been scared off those who call themselves "realists", scared off by those who mockingly call us dreamers, who tell us the world can't change, no one wants it to change, no one wants to walk the walk when talking the talk gets you as far as you need to be. and even though there are those of us who don't want to believe that's what's really real (and we cling to hope like its the last thing we've got), we're too unsure to convince others to believe as we do. and the fire of hope flickers on a low flame until someone great comes along and ignites us. someone great who believes in themselves enough to spread that message of power. someone great who believes in all of us and empowers us to do what we can. someone who isn't too afraid to step up to strongholds on long-held fears, and say, "fuck you!" by saying something like, "YES WE CAN!"

well, you know what? he did it again today. barack obama went on television, told the world he loved a man and stood by him, in spite of his faults. he chose to keep his friend when the rest of the political world and media thought it more appropriate to throw rev. wright under the bus, just because the man says it when he is pissed off at the realities of racism, ignorance, poverty, and glass ceilings. barack obama stood up and told all of us, "YES YOU CAN". let's acknowlede it. let's talk about. this racial divide we cling to, out of the very fear many of us decry, hurts the hell out of this country. it encourages us to sweep our problems, our fears, our anger and disappointments under the rug, to smile at the world while dying on the inside. that's dumb, and it's time to talk and it's time to walk and it's time to unite ourselves toward a greater america we can all love and be proud of. he's right, it ain't gonna happen overnight. but he's also right that, yes, we can do this.

16 March 2008


i helped my bff set up his facebook page tonight (he has finally joined the over-information age) and, in doing so, kinda took a once over of my own. i was a wee surprised to see how often love comes up on my page (though i probably shouldn’t have been). it’s in my quotes, my movies, my music, my pictures. it’s kind of in my everywhere, facebook and otherwise. it’s cuz it’s love and that’s what makes my world go round and round and sometimes even upside down.

google love and it hits “about 1,930,000,000” times. “i’m feeling lucky” leads straight to wikipedia where klimt’s “the kiss” highlights the romantic side of love. capturing the beauty of the emotion, klimt portrays a pair of golden lovers, tangled up in each other, in the throes of a passionate embrace. her longing leaps from the canvas while the absence of his face, buried in the neck of his lover, says more than even his face could. dictionary.com offers 28 definitions of love…

nothing in my life has caused greater pain or greater moments of joy, from my friends, family, and lovers alike. my unwavering belief in love’s role in my life has been the source of the greatest disappointments and the most wondrous surprises and i guess that shouldn’t really be any mystery, all things considered. used as an excuse for grisly murders and a reason for grand acts of generosity since the beginning of time, at the root of new beginnings and terrible endings, and the subject of history’s greatest tales and most celebrated war stories is love.

everyone has something to say about love and, whether it be gentle in nature or the thunderous roar at the heart of a revolution, all seem to agree that, “all [we] need is love”:
• che guevarra said that, “the true revolutionary is guided by a great feeling of love”.
• through the voice of helen, shakeseare told us, “love looks not with the eyes, but with the mind”.
• demarco said that love was the only answer to questions of value in life.
• plato noted that, “at the touch of love everyone becomes a poet”.
• the scottish playwrite sir james barrie said of love, “if you have it, you don't need to have anything else, and if you don't have it, it doesn't matter much what else you have”.
• and even joseph conrad left us with, "woe to the man whose heart has not learned while young to hope, to love - and to put its trust in life".

while the cynics mock love, the romantics revel in it; while the young and lucky know nothing but love, the battered and unlucky sneer when love manifests. though it ain’t always great, love has touched us all and always will. though some of us will never really give love a second chance, some of us will try with all our might to believe in love again. and then there are those of us who will jump back in with reckless abandon, even after strolling about the doldrums of love’s most desperate hours.

i want to be that girl, the one who jumps back in with reckless abandon. but i cannot seem to direct my fear into complete submission. for all the wonderful love is, has been, and can be, it also terrifies the shit out of me. i mean, it’s not really love itself that terrifies. it’s the fear that having faith in love will blow up in my face and i don’t know how i’d fare with another burn.

cuz i’ve been burned like a mother fucker, have blindly believed in the words of a liar i would have laid down my own life to defend, and though the scars may continue to fade, time will never erase them away completely. even though i see love everywhere i look, feel it in every breath i take, in every choice i make, in every friend i have, and in every direction i choose to glimpse at my future, i’m still scared it will destroy me if i’m forced to endure the agony of its failure again. the thing is, i know i want love more than i’m scared of it. i want to believe in it. i have to believe it can and will be better than it’s ever been, even if i am scared. near to death…