Monday, November 30, 2009

One Year

Dear Diary:

Roughly a year ago I moved into an 800+ square foot apartment. Yesterday I turned in my keys.

That apartment served me well. If you can believe it, it was the very first apartment that I had rented on my own. Prior to that point I had rented places owned by my family or, with my ex-wife, had owned property.

That apartment was a first for a lot of reasons. Although my friend Kelly was the property manager, I still had to apply and fill out all the paperwork. I still had to pay rent. I still had to set up utilities in my name. I paid for the moving company. I did it on my own. I look at that apartment as a proving ground for my independence.

A year ago, I remember crying the first night I slept in that apartment because I could simply not believe that my life had turned out the way it did. My marriage was destroyed and had a one way ticket to divorce. My home was gone. I was broke and barely making it. And even though I had a new bunch of friends as well as all of my old ones, I had never felt so fucking alone in my life.

But I had learned to love that place and all the lessons that it taught me about myself. I spent a lot of time writing those first few months I was in that place and I think the completely different scenery did me well. I can remember two of my oldest friends visiting once or twice and my dads only saw the place twice. My brother only saw the place once. Other than that it was pretty much myself, my thoughts, and my work (with the occasional visit from Kelly or a female guest....).

Now I am lying in bed in my new place. Sure its needs a lot of work (finished stairs, paint, bricked sealed, banister, shower door custom built, etc) but I am looking forward to making this place my home for the next few years. The ironic thing is that once the mortgage kicks in it will cost me less to own this house than it did for me to rent last year.

And although I am on my own, I am in a much better place both emotionally and financially that I was a year ago, and for that I pat myself on the back, as well as thank all the good fucking luck I had the last year.

So to my old apartment I say I will miss you, but I will not miss sitting in fucking traffic for an hour every morning on they way to work. That there was some bullshit.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Um, What Was I?? Oh Yeah!

Dear Diary:

You know, it is amazing the things we forget and the things we remember.

I remember my third birthday. I had a cake with white frosting and blue and yellow flowers. We ate it and celebrated in my grandparents' back yard near their pool.

I remember my first bike. My dad bought it for me. It was a Huffy. It was black. I got it when I was about 5 and it served me well for years. I also remember cracking my head open on a stone ledge when the training wheels got stuck in a crack on the sidewalk.

I remember playing in the mud and making mud pies the post holes that were dug in my back yard when my dad and his friend built a wooden fence. I was about 3 or 4.

I remember my second grade teacher because I thought she looked like a real live witch.

I remember going to the horse track with my grandfather to watch the horses train early in the morning. I also remember fishing with him and my baby brother. And waking up to him making honey roasted peanuts in the morning. It was when I was 3 through 5.

I remember my first kiss. I remember how to spell the last name of my best friend when I was in the fourth grade. I remember when I became the fat kid. I remember moving around a lot growing up.

I remember the first time I met my best friend. It was 8th grade during football practice

I remember how my ex-wife smelled the day I proposed to her. I remember our wedding day like it was yesterday. I remember the first time I told her I loved her.

I remember her laughing as we took each others clothes off because we were having a great time and were so happy to see each other after a month while I stayed in a hotel while she was still in college.

And I remember how she looked at me like something was bothering her when we went to sleep the night she came home from a business trip and everything went downhill from there.

So why couldn't I remember one of the most important things in the world, simple fucking coffee filters, when I made a trip to my apartment to pick up my coffee maker?

Tomorrow is Thanksgiving, and if there isn't a coffee shop open, I am going to be one annoyed human being.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Silence

Dear Diary:

I am convinced there are two types of people in the world: those that enjoy silence and those that are annoyed by it.

I enjoy silence. As I write this (another mobile installment, so you know the rules) I am sitting on my couch in a completely quiet house.

It is raining outside. The only sounds I hear are of the rain drops hitting the pavement and the sound of the random cars driving past the front of my house on the slick road. There is the random creak of the house and nothing else.

I have no cable. I have no Internet. I have no music because the docking station is still packed while my crew continues to work. There is nothing except the sound of silence, with the occasional aforementioned disruption.

It is peaceful.

I enjoy the silence. It allows me to be at one with my thoughts. This is a silence I cherish.

There is another type of silence, but one where words are communicated without ever saying them. This is the silence when you look into a lover's eyes and the look says everything you want to say for you. I cherish this silence as well. It is also the silence I miss on occasion.

Right now I will settle for the rain.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

And Here We Go Again....

Dear Diary:

Girl 7 and I had our third date tonight. Friday she had asked that if I wanted to have dinner at her place Sunday (tonight), that is if I managed to give myself a break from unpacking. I of course said I would love to, which brings me to tonight.

I had dinner at her place tonight. I have to say her apartment is pretty damn awesome and she made me feel very comfortable. She went all out really with dinner and dessert (she even makes her own ice cream!) and I had a great time.

Now the funny thing about a first kiss is there is so much riding on it when you think about it. The timing has to be there. The moment has to be right. Even when you sense that both parties are heading in that direction, one simple miscue can throw it all off. You also don't want to get carried away with the first one. No one wants to fuck up a first kiss. Anyone who says they don't care about it is full of shit in my book.

I was nervous about kissing her and I don't know why. I haven't had any trouble with my recent first kisses but this one had me thrown off a bit.

She had given me my jacket and I put it on to leave and when we hugged goodbye we kissed. Her kiss felt well, good, but more than good. Refreshing? Warm? Peaceful? It is hard to really describe but I definitely did like it.

Now, another thing about Girl 7, and I mentioned this briefly before, is that she frew up in the same state my ex-wife grew up. Let me be more specific. The two of them grew up about 45 minutes away from each other.

For some reason I am having an interesting time dealing with this reality. It's not a bad thing, but it is so random and ironic that it seems a bit off. I am definitely not holding this agaist Girl 7 by any means, but it sure as hell will make for an interesting conversation when the subject of my divorce comes up.

Speaking of that, I have gotten input from friends and coworkers (and even you) about when is the best time to bring that up. One has said that it should be brought to light before I sleep with a woman. Another has said don't say anything until I have dated a woman for a while. Another has said it's no one's business really. Another has said be upfront about it. But when?

I don't hide from my divorce. It has turned out to be the best thing that could've happened to me. But there is that fear in the back of my head that reminds me that some will judge me for something that I endured. That somehow it is a reflection on me that I am divorced and it really isn't.

I mean, I cannot be sorry for the hand I was dealt if I ended up winning the pot right?

(Written on a crackberry. If the above made no sense, well tough shit)

Picking Staples Out Of Stairs

Dear Diary:

This is the first experiment with mobile blogging so if shit does not make sense, just roll with it.

I sit here on my stairs in the new house. There are boxes everywhere and contractor bags filled with garbage. Just the type of place you want to move into right?

I just spent the last hour picking staples out of the staircase. These staples are left from demolition when the carpet was ripped up. This is my life, and I wouldn't have it any other way.

It is a bit surreal living in a house again. I feel grown up and independent. I feel responsible. I feel vindicated.

The house is a decent sized two bedroom, one and a half bath place. The only downside is that the vast majority of the furniture I own is two big for the place. I need to buy a new couch and a new entertainment center. The bookcases I have are pretty worthless at the moment because there is no plave to put them. Oh and I need to also buy a bed for the guestroom. Ikea here I come.

The granite counter top for the kitchen was installed yesterday and looks, for lack of a better word, absofuckinglutely amazing. Black granite with dark cabinets and stainless steel appliances. Jackpot.

The only downside to the kitchen at the moment is that the wall cabinets are too high and are being lowered Tuesday, so I can't unpack most of the kitchen stuff, nor can I cook anything since nothing is turned on.

I slept here last night for the first time. It is an interesting experience to sleep in a new place the first night. It takes a little while to get adjusted to the sounds of the house as well as the sounds of the city outside. To hear the cars driving at two in the morning, the occasional yelling outside late at night, ahh how I have missed this.

Now I am waiting for my washer and dryer to be delivered and once that is done, I have everything I need (well except for the shower door I need custom built). So with that I am going to get back to unpacking and cleaning.

Anyone want some furniture?

Friday, November 20, 2009

T-Minus

Dear Diary:

It is approximately 12:45 EST as this is written on a Friday afternoon. In less than 24 hours, the moving truck will come and the crew will load my shit and carry it to my new house.

And it's about fucking time.

Now, for the record, the house isn't done. I do not have a shower door yet, and have to get one custom made. The stairs are completely rough, and have to be redone. I have to fix some stuff in the kitchen, and the counter top arrives Saturday afternoon. I also still have a lot of painting to do, and some touch up plastering of the walls.

But, the basics are done to the point that I can move in. Jackpot.

Also, as I write this, I realize my life is incredibly boring....

------------

Girl 7 and I had our second date last night. We met up in her neighborhood and went to a restaurant that neither she nor I had been to before, but it came recommended. The food was fantastic, and dinner lasted three hours. Fortunately, we left and got into our cars right before a torrential downpour. I swear, it was like a damn monsoon outside.

Anyway, I really enjoyed our date, and apparently she did to, or at least that is what her E-mail to me said this morning when she asked me if I wanted to take a break from the whole move and head over to her place for dinner this weekend. Once again:

Jackpot.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Girl 7

Dear Diary:

I had a date tonight.

I had a date tonight with a very intelligent woman.

We drank Pinot Noir and talked.

She has a great laugh, and is an interesting person.

Oh, and she is...........FUCKING GORGEOUS!

(Doing the happy dance)

Now, when I say she is intelligent, I am in no way bullshitting you. She has a very interesting job doing something that she enjoys and is passionate about. She laughed at some of the stupid shit I said (and believe me, there was plenty since I was nervous as hell), and I enjoyed hanging out with her. As we parted, she said we should do it again sometime. I am definitely interested in seeing her again, but I guess time will tell. She is five years younger than I am, but that's no big deal in my book.

One thing though is that if she was just being nice, then that's ok too. I am not going to feel bad about it.

Oh, another thing, she is from the same state that my ex-wife is from. Talk about irony.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Words

Dear Diary:

Words are funny things. I like them because they are funny things. I like the fact that I can rearrange them to fit certain situations. I like the fact that I can speak them and say nothing, or I can speak them and say everything.

But they are just words. Or are they?

My ex used to say it doesn't matter what you say if there is no action when we were working on the whole marriage thing. When she was leaving, and during the divorce, she blamed my words, not so much my actions. Talk about a Catch-22.

Now why do I say this? Because it's the words we ultimately remember.

Ever hear of Homer? Plato? Aristotle? You couldn't pick Plato out of a line-up if you could go back in time, but you have probably heard, and were also able to understand the allegory of the cave.

Words are timeless.

They can mold, they can enlighten, they can illuminate, and truly create something beautiful. They can also tear down, they can deceive, they can destroy, and they can conquer.

But they really do not mean shit unless you want them to. It's kind of ironic that they are arguably the most powerful tool at one's disposal, but at the same time only have power if power is given to them. Furthermore, what one may want his or her words to convey, they are always subject to interpretation. So, I could say or write something that I believe to be extremely profound, and it could be completely diminished by whomever is listening. Words are powerful, yet fragile at the same time. They are yin and yang. They are chaos. They are art.

I guess that's why I feel words are so important. They are so versatile, that they can mean nothing to anyone except the person who used them, because they are entirely our own, and there is absolutely nothing wrong with that.

And that is fucking empowerment if you ask me.

(This message has been brought to you by someone waiting for his caffeine to kick in)

Monday, November 9, 2009

Sushi

Dear Diary:

I love sushi. I mean, I really really love sushi. There is something so simple, yet elegant about a nice piece of sushi. I didn't always like sushi. In fact, there was once a time where the thought of sushi made me want to vomit.

I can remember the very first time I had a piece of sushi. This happened probably about eight years ago. I was out with a bunch of friends whom I have known since I was in high school. We went to some place in Clarendon, and I cannot remember the name of it right now. One of my buddies ordered a couple pieces of sushi, and when I made a disgusted face, he had me try one. It was tuna. I ate it. I thought it was fucking horrible.

Fast forward a few years, and my ex was working in Seattle for a week. I took a trip out to visit her as I had never been to the city, and we had a nice little vacation. My ex liked sushi, and since we were on the Pacific Rim, I figured there was no better place in the States to try some sushi.

I went all in. I had nigiri, as well as maki, and I fell in love with it. The only sushi I will not try is eel, because it just does not look appetizing. However, I have become a big fan of baby octopus.

Anyway, last night after running around all day buying appliances and working with my HVAC guy, I was tired, and craving sushi. There is this great place near me in Alexandria, Kyoto Sushi, and it has become my "go to" sushi place when I have a craving. If you want some good sushi, you should check this place out.

I showed up about an hour before closing, after not having eaten anything all day. I can pretty much eat a ton of the stuff, and honestly, could eat it every day if I had a bottomless bank account. The sushi chefs there recognize me because when I do go there, it is generally on a day when I haven't eaten anything else, and well, let's just say I enjoy it.

You are probably wondering why I am writing about sushi. It is a completely random topic to write about right?

The thing I love most about sushi is that I can sit at the sushi bar and eat alone, and not feel alone. I do not have to sit at a table with more than one chair and see other tables filled with couples and families. I do not have to have a conversation with anyone if I do not want to. I can be by myself, with my thoughts, and the wonderful tastes of what is in front of me. I can laugh with the sushi chef, and I can talk to him as he prepares the feast. I can focus on his mastery of the knife and his delicate movements that create something so simple yet amazing.

It's quality "me" time if you ask me.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Exhaustion

Dear Diary:

Have you ever felt like you could just use a break? I mean, a break from everything? Because if you have, you know where I am coming from.

I am dead tired, both physically and emotionally. I have hit my limit as far as what I can take at one time. Balancing work, renovations, dating (err rather, dating limbo), family in town for a wedding, and well life in general has been a real battle.

As a result of this balancing act, the one thing I forgot to take care of was myself. I have been drinking more than normal, and have been eating crap that I shouldn't eat because it was convenient. I have not had the chance to go for a run in two and a half weeks because after I am done everything for the day, I do not have the energy to take a shit much less exercise. As a result, I have gained about 9 pounds. All the hard work that I had done was erased in a week and a half. So, that is a bit depressing.

So, I need to get to the gym. But how? When? Not only do I have to get this fucking house done and deal with work, but I also have to pack because the moving truck is coming on the 21st. I have no idea how I am going to pull this off, but I really do not have a choice.

On the dating front, I am taking a break. Girl 6 has, for lack of a better term, completely blown me off. I was upset about this, but, there isn't much I can do about it. I just wish I hadn't had slept with her.

I would like nothing more right now that to hope a plane to Mexico and stay in a hotel with an ocean front room and wake up every morning to a nice hot cup of coffee while sitting on the balcony listening to the waves come in. But the odds of that being able to happen right this second are about as good as me winning the lottery tonight.

Another thing I have not had much time to do is catch up on all the other divorce related blogs that are out there, and there are some good ones. I feel like I should be reading them more, either to just check up on some of my readers, or to offer a word or two to let them know that they aren't alone. However, with the mental state I am in, I don't think I could offer anything that would make any sense.

Fuck, I don't even know what else to say here, how am I supposed to say something else somewhere else?

I need a nap.