[personal profile] aerodrome1
Sitting here in the lakeside flat while the violet hour stretches along the river and thinking of the sound of rain. It did rain a bit earlier today--- spring showers off and on in mid-afternoon. I walked home in a couple of passing showers, ducking into arcades by the big black glass finance towers. I'm a great fan of spring and summer showers--- cooling the city down, washing pollen out of the air.

Jill at [profile] pacific_lolita wrote me that she'd been unable to sleep the other night, even though she'd played the Sudden Rainstorm background sounds track on Spotify for hours. I can sympathise with her insomnia--- I've been dealing with that for a while now ---but I do envy her having Spotify with environmental noise sounds. I'd love to drift off to sleep with rain sounds playing, or something a distant thunderstorm or a storm at sea. Funny thought, darlings--- I used to sleep with the university radio station doing late-night experimental programs, but I don't think I've even had a radio on in my flat in months and months. I wonder if there's an app somewhere with rainstorm sounds I could have playing on my iPhone while I tried to sleep. There's an app for everything, I suppose, so I should spend some time looking.

Back at the start of the Year Twelve, when I was first looking for a sword cane, the lovely Jill wrote me to say that I would go for a longer blade over a shorter blade (at least half the length of the cane) better control and with a curved handle so there is something to hold onto... She also told me that she'd fenced foil back at school. I hadn't known that--- new information. I was surprised--- I hadn't known that she'd ever fenced. Jill had a close friend at school named Sarah, a girl who'd been a serious competitive fencer, a girl who'd gone off to China to do master-class level training in fencing and had a torrid affair with her (Much Older) German-born instructor. I'd like to know all of Sarah's more Wicked tales, and I'd like to know what Stories she and Jill could tell of posh teen depravity in Lower Hutt. I do wonder if Jill had fencing just as part of gym class or if she actively joined a team or club.

Anyway...who else do I know who's fenced? Anyone out there over the aether care to chime in? My ex-Bloomsbury friend used to fence epee rather than foil; Siobhan-now-in-London used to fence epee as well. Well, I envy all of them. I'd love to fence--- I suppose I've always been attracted to sabre, but foil would be fine. I'm nowhere near aerobic or flexible enough these days, but I'd still love to learn.

Right now I'm listening to three versions of "Boulevard of Broken Dreams" back-to-back: Amy Winehouse, Diana Krall, Marianne Faithfull. I have no idea what that means.

No message yet from Dreamwidth about my site there downloading. I'll have to look into that. I do want to get the mirror up and running.

Yesterday I got a text from one of the owners of Katelyn's restaurant. The restaurant was having a birthday party for her husband, and I was invited. I'd been far too afraid and embarrassed to go back there since mid-February, but they were happy to see me. All smiles, free glasses of sauvignon blanc. I'm glad I can go back there for brunch or for a glass or two of something on my way home. I now feel relieved--- people still like me! ---but also a bit like a fool for staying away for two months out of fear and shame.

My moodswings are becoming more intense and they're probably cycling faster. It may just be that I do feel a bit overwhelmed and directionless at work. I'm not sure what I'm doing and not sure how I'm doing at learning. I need the firm to stay afloat. I need a haven. Also a steady source of income. I'm not sure if it's just the emotional backlash setting in--- I know I had a bad spell a few months after my father died. Sometimes it does take a while for things to catch up to me. Everything out there seems to be a memento mori...or at least a reminder that @Nihilist_Arbys is right about pretty much everything.

Jill also sent me this last night---

it was just the one photo. it wasn't a photo taken of him. it was from a wedding, two little flower girls in cream dresses and pink chuck taylors. but there he was, sitting on a chair by the aisle. a blue suit jacket and ray bans and a lot more grey in his hair then he ever had last time i saw him.

after everything happened i reached out to him twice, years ago. i called him at work, he didn't take the call and never rang back. i sent him a text when i was in brisbane once, staying at a hotel near the train station. again, no reply.

i kept thinking he world get in contact. when he heard that i graduated. when someone told him that my dog died. seeing the photo, it surprised me that he still existed. that he is out there in the world being invited to weddings and getting older and that we still haven't found our way back to each other.


That's haunting and lovely, but...what is it? Is it something autobiographical about Jill? If so...is it something about one of her first Older Lovers? About the man who had her virginity? Or...does that srs at the end mean that it's a quote from something--- a quote she found at Tumblr? She does post a fair number of quotes there... Anyway--- I'm going to obsess over this until I get the full backstory and the context. Truth is socially constructed, culturally mediated, and historically situated: key teachings from my training to be an academic historian. So I will need all Jill's backstory on the passage; I'll need all her context for the passage. Oh God, yes, I'm going to obsess over the passage. And over why Jill might be staying a hotel near Brisbane Central Station.

I'm hoping that the cotton blanket I ordered from L.L. Bean will be here in the next couple of days. I'll have the a/c on soon enough, and I want to have a light blanket that'll work for the Deepest South year. Cream with two wide blue stripes--- very simple design, but one I think I'll like a lot.

Five years ago, I posted this:

There's a saying that "the lap dance is better if the stripper is crying"--- I think we've all heard that. But it does not, repeat not, logically follow that the lap dance is best if the stripper is vomiting blood while her head rotates through 360 degrees and she shrieks phrases in ancient Coptic. Or at least it doesn't necessarily follow.

Of course I stand by that. Always.

Valentine's night of the Year Twelve:

Jill in NZ wrote that she'd spent Valentine's morning in bed with her own Caitie, exchanging gifts and caresses. Caitie gave Jill a set of very elegant Lelo vibrators; Jill gave her lovely friend a copy of Richard Siken's "Crush" and a bottle of Veuve Cliquot. Lovely on both parts, though Jill did have a date arranged with a Much Older Male for Valentine's night in Wellington. She tells me she doesn't know how to explain that except to say that she needs to be with a man on Valentine's night, no matter how much she needs Caitie in her bed on other, less ritual nights. I'm never quite sure how to analyse the gender politics there. I doubt the W&GS cabal on Morningside Heights would approve, but of course they already don't approve of Jill being my friend these last seven or eight years.

That Valentine's season I also wrote:

I used to read Stella's accounts of her call-girl summers in NYC and Miami and have this fear that if I were ever in NYC and had the money and called a high-end service like the one Stella and her Lucia worked for, awful things would happen. I used to have nightmares of the girl getting off the elevator on my hotel floor, knocking at the door, taking one look at me and then spurning the fee and stalking off in disgust while she got on her iPhone to savage her bookers for sending her to someone who looked like me.

Well, I was having moodswings and deep spasms of self-loathing even then. I can't escape them.

One day, darlings, one day--- I will have the lovely, long-legged Jill read me Richard Siken poems in bed. I want that rather a lot, just as I want to read Cavafy to her in bed. It's been far, far too long since I've read to someone--- to a lover. And I can't recall anyone actually reading to me, ever. I feel that as a defeat, as a lack, as a judgment on my value. It's the same thing with the shameful fact that no lovely girl has ever made me dinner. That's very much a social judgment, after all.

No. I am not a fan of David Foster Wallace. He's never really caught my interest. I liked the film version of "Conversations With Hideous Men", but mostly because I thought the heroine--- the interviewer ---was seriously hot. "Infinite Jest" is like later Pynchon--- it does nothing for me at all. There's a whole Twitter thing today where women mock and deride men who've recommended David Foster Wallace to them. Well, recommending books, films, or music rarely works out well. If you really like a book or an album, you put yourself into it. If someone dislikes your recommendation, they're disliking a piece of you. All the more true for people like me, people who've lived inside books all our lives, who identify with books so completely. Anyway...it seems like I'll avoid being mocked as A White Guy Who Recommends David Foster Wallace. At least there's that.

So far...so far...Jill at [profile] pacific_lolita has enjoyed the recommendations I do make, just as I've enjoyed the targeted recommendations she sends me. That's been a key thing for me--- sharing books and films. Taking the risk of recommending something to her has been worth it. I felt the same way with Miss Ginny, back in the Long Ago.

And, yes--- I do love Jill's lists of books she'd take into exile in the Far Foreign or on that long sailboat cruise. And her tales of stealing books from the shelves of sleeping Older Lovers. Those stories are always a delight--- the game of course is trying to intuit why she chose a particular book to sneak out with before dawn.

I may take some time this weekend and do more decluttering. I just need to make space here--- open space, space to walk that isn't narrowed by boxes and Rubbermaid storage bins. I need attachments to people I love, not to stuff.

Anyway...time to visit Duolingo and work on renewing my German. And then time to go out on the deck and watch the city lights and relax for a bit before bed. Last night at the party, someone I've known for decades complained that a party than started at 20h00 would get her home long past her usual 22h00 bedtime. Well, I haven't reached that yet. I'll still be reading at midnight. So that's something.



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