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Monday, June 28, 2004

I didn't bother to update my "reading" tab, but you should know I've been reading Playing the Future, by Douglas Rushkoff (who wrote Cyberia, used as reference material for Lain, used as intellectual masturbation for Leticia). It's a delightful book that talks about how the kids of today are better equipped for surviving in the Brand New Paradigm than us obsolete, outmoded adults. Phooey.

No, really, you know how I always think of teenagers as those "other people?" Well, it's come to bite me in the butt. According to Rushkoff--and you'll believe him after reading his eloquent prose--the chaotic self-similarity of modern teenage entertainment (videogames, Internet communities, giant robot anime) reflects how they are growing up in a world that is maturing into a sentient being. In the olden days, we skied; we went straight down, avoiding all obstacles to get the fastest time. Nowadays, kids snowboard, and thrash every obstacle in sight in an attempt to feel the mountain for themselves. (None of that makes any sense now, but it will, when you read the book, trust me.)

Rushkoff's favorite recurring theme is the fractal, from comlpex mathematics; it's a vizualization of complex math that looks chaotic and incomprehensible at first glance but when you look closer, it's a repetition of the same pattern on many different scales. In classical mathematics, a mountain is just a flat cone; but to the snowboarder, it's a landscape of cascading mountains, smaller and smaller, to be thrashed with his snowboard with abandon.

I was always proud that, when I was little, I did not "channel surf;" I picked a show that looked interesting, watched it, and then turned the TV off. Now, I do not watch TV (except for the Firefly DVDs... Firefly!), and rather prefer not knowing how the corporate media moguls wish to twist my brain to convince me that motorized nosehair trimmers are cool. However, Rushkoff says that's how his (read: old fogy) generation watched TV, by picking a show and watching it and turning the TV off; but these days, kids thrash the media landscape, taking only what they want and leaving the rest. For us, TV was a passive exercize; for them, it's fully interactive as they no longer have to accept programming from their corporate masters. Surreal.

(In addition, there's a whole bunch of interesting stuff about how action figure collection further abstracts our concept of money, but I've stolen enough from his book already so I'll let him go.) The thing is, I've always been told that I have the mind of an adult (aww shucks) and I've always felt like I have the habits and wisdom of an adult; but you see, it's only because I come from an outmoded way of thinking, and pretty soon the all-new Children 98 are going to replace old obsolete Leticia and her passive television watching habits and replace me with a newer model who can chat on IM (I hate IM), watch TV (I hate TV), play a videogame (well I like videogames...), and talk on the phone (I'm shy on the phone) all while filing her nails and listen to her mom lecture on boys.

I'm sure I have _some_ saving grace. For instance, I like Digimon. See? The kids who win in Digimon are the kids who let techology into their lives. It's the fearful adults who always lose. That, and the evil Digimon who wish to keep the human and digital worlds seperate, so as to prevent mogrelization of data. Um, nobody ever said that, but it's a good metaphor; the DigiDestined, fighting for integration, while the old, outdated adults and ruling-class Digimon try to keep the two worlds seperate because they think they are destined to have war. It's the kids who understand that they can have peace.

God dammit, it's always the kids who understand that sort of thing. Rushkoff is right. Let them take over, with their crazy MP3 players and strange videogames. They know what they're doing. ...I hope.

...At least I hope they'll do a better job than we did. I mean, Vietnam and then Iraq look pretty crappy on our generational resume. How can we expect kids to respect us when we tell them to share and not to fight and then decide to bomb other countries out of nothing but personal conviction? We're wimps.
As yo may have noticed, I feel comfortable talking about sex again. I won't talk about it all the time, but I will when I feel like it.

Thanks.

Saturday, June 26, 2004

Good God I'm lonely today. I just sat around my house and moped, and then I went to the library and moped, and then I came back here and moped. Gross.

While lulling in bed, as I am wont to do on Saturday morning, I thought of the boyfriend I would want to wake me up. Here he is:

He looks sort of like Yami Bakura, from Yu-Gi-Oh!, whose name you shall note sounds something like "yummy Bakura," which is indeed very accurate. (For a second there I imagined dark Yugi imprisoned in my stomach and I giggled.) He would walk into my room, uninvited, naked, before leaping at me and then landing at my side. I'd ask him to take my pajamas off and the would rip them from me with vigor, but I would make him stop at my panties in order to come up with something creative.

First I told him to pay a toll, but making him give me money to get at my vagina wasn't working so I told him if he wanted to get into my netherworld he would have to turn me on enough to make me drop them myself. So he growls and bites my nipple and licks the side of my body and I laugh uncontrollaby and then I assume I yank my panties off but the fantasy ended right about there when I fell off the bed and crawled hopelessly towards my door in hopes of starting my day.

Oh, well...

Failing that, I would like him to make me into a popsicle, and then lick me until I dissappear. A cherry one, for the symbolism. Popsicles symbolize innocence, don't they? I would like to be innocent and inatimate. I am a fluffy bunny slaughtered for her meat.

...

Yeah.
In case you missed the news... Dick Cheney's secret identity, revealed!
I just saw Fahrenheit 9/11.

Go see it. Now. I order you. If you are Democrat or Republican, American, British, Moroccan, Venezualan, if you work in a factory or in a skyscraper, GO SEE THIS DAMNED MOVIE. Absolutely EVERYTHING I've wanted to say to the American people for the past four years is summed up in an easy-to-consume, sensationalist Michael Moore package. You will laugh and cry, in equal measure. Really.

What moved me the most was seeing an Iraqi woman, upon seeing her uncle's house demolished (with her uncle in it), shouted at the camera that God was great and would smite the Americans in revenge. "Allahu Akbar!" she shouted at US, the common theater-goer, blaming us for the death of her uncle.

And for a second, I honestly wished God would strike down my house as she said, avenge her uncle and break all my nice kitchen counters and dishwashers and GameCubes and Xboxes and every single thing that makes me an American ignorant to the suffering of the rest of the world. And yet... it's silly to think that the Americans are responsible for this atrocity; we're so far removed from what's happening, all we were being told is that the President needs your help to strike down on the evildoers who are going to invade your community. How the hell the Earth's poorest nations are supposed to want to kill us for our freedoms is beyond me, but you can't really blame the populace for supporting this war when all they saw were Fox News presentations designed to look like football games that said terra terra terra, Iraqi freedom, support the troops and damn, that was one hell of an explosion.

So I do wonder what I can do as an American and that is not to be so ignorant all the time. The people who are responsible for this war are Bush and friends, but also the people who let him; the Democratic senators who pissed their pants, the Republicans who stood by and saluted while their party's traditional platforms of "stop big government" and "mind our own borders" were being eroded, and ultimately you and me, for sitting and being complacent about all this. I suppose the only thing I can do, as an American, to repay that woman who shouted "Allahu Akbar!" at me with such certainty that I almost felt the theater come down on me, is to educate myself and become part of that machine. I can take the blame. I can tell myself that, as a citizen of a Democratic society, I pay the price for what my country as done. And I can do everything in my power to make sure nothing like this ever happens again.

That is the only true patriotism. Serve your country. Serve your democracy. Freedom demands it. Vote!

Thursday, June 24, 2004

I'm sure you'll all be thrilled to know that yesterday I gots myself a copy of Mega Man: Anniversary Collection. Yahoo! So far, it's lots of fun. I never got to play Mega Man as a kid (hey, I was like, two years old!), and I felt a yearning for a simplistic game that would last me a good long time, and so the ten-game Mega Man retro-pack seemed like the way to go.

For me, after a while, Viewtiful Joe started giving me a headache because it's just so visually noisy. But also... most of the games I play these days take about ten or fifteen hours, or they offer very little gratification per hour. (Not that RPG's aren't fun... if you have the time to spend five hours per session fighting the same enemies over and over again in hopes of getting morsels of plot that are the same as the RPG you played last year.) My dad, however, was pretty shocked that I would be playing an NES game...

He thinks my games (and, by extension, me) are so sophisticated, what with their fancy graphics and long, deep storylines, and wondered why I would be meddling with the likes of a common NES game. Well... it's still gameplay that counts. Sorry.
When I die, I would like to be buried in some ditch off the highway, with nothing to remember me. I'm hoping that, if I do good enough in life, I'll be immortal anyway through my deeds; but, if I die, I don't want to take up other people's space with a gravestone. People live and people die, and those are the rules, I think it's fair if I just pack up and go after my eighty years on planet Earth.

My funeral, however, will be as upbeat as possible. I attended a service for a beloved skater punk boy in my community, and they played "Heaven is a Halfpipe:"

Now heaven would be a DJ
spinning dub all night long
and Heaven would just kickin back
with Jesus packing my bong
And if you don't believe in Jesus and Muhammad and Budha too
and while the world is warring
just sit back and laugh at you singing..

If I die before I wake
at least in heaven I can skate
cause right now on earth I cant do jack
without the man up on my back


I bawled my eyes out for a good ten minutes. Nothing to me was more moving than a positive attitude towards death. But when I cried, it was more than just me being sad: I was purging all the excess in my soul. Suddenly I felt things. And when the boy next to me said nothing and just held me... that made it all the better.

I'd want my funeral to honor me as a human being and not as a corpse. I'd like to make everybody cry the way I cried at that boy's funeral... crying for losing a boy we dearly loved and could have done so much for the world, and at the same time, empowering us to take up his legacy and his attitude, incorporating his spirit into our own and carrying on our community for generations to come.

So I suppose the way I would want everybody to come back from my funeral is to feel that they can let go of Leticia McKenzie, to let her flow freely into the wind, because the real reason I want to be left in a ditch somewhere is because I want to become part of nature. I want everybody to understand that I can never die, matter can neither be created nor destroyed, and that when I die I will be the wind that whispers to you in the night and the flowers that bloom in the spring. I will be scattered to the winds, free of the entrapment of my ego. It was dust that I was meant to be, and dust that I shall become again.

It's sort of fun that all of us, who were, at various times, trees, flowers, shit, dirt, animals, and people, stray atoms circulating throughout the circle of life, get configured for eighty years as an ego, a human being, capable of advanced thought and a myriad motor functions. But, in the same way, we will die and we will decompose and we, along with our friends, our pets, our dirt, and our trees, will reconfigure each other trillions of different ways to become trillions of different people.

And so someday, I, Leticia Jeanette McKenzie, will come back from the dead, if in a completely new time period, because I am merely an abstraction, and abstractions never die. What am I really? I'm a collection of bones and muscles and neurons configured in a most meticulous way to form a human being. I am a machine, capable only of taking orders and responding to its circumstances. Where I really shine is in the relationships of my neurons; the wonderfully random and yet precisely patterned little beasts that chatter away in my cranium to form the collection of electrical signals and actions that form ME, the ego, the one who tells you to be careful not to spill your juice and that it isn't nice to call people names. If I am my soul, and my soul is defined by who I am according to the processes of my neurons, than I am merely a pattern of electrical signals. I am an idea, and ideas never die.

Someday, after I die, I will come back, memories intact, wondering what the hell's been happening to me and why I have purple hair. As part of the infinitely random processes of the universe, anything can and will happen, and I have no reason to fear death. I also have no reason to convince myself of heaven or hell, because this is one universe that I am interacting with in the here and now, and to speak of other universes in conjecture is fun but a waste of my time on this earth. I hope that, just as I have spent a good chunk of time on Earth, I get to explore other universes after I die, or maybe before. They'll probably have bad inflight food and rude restaurant owners, but housing is cheap and the cities are sparkling clean. Isn't that right?

Leticia

(There's not any particular reason that I'm talking about death today; I intend on wearing out my lifespan as much as possible. It just helps for me to think about it, as a way of being able to deal with today only. Did I ever tell you that I worry too much?)

Wednesday, June 23, 2004

Hmhmhmhm. Article in the San Francisco Gate. (Reference thanks to alert reader Emma Harvey, who, you may recall, also provided the crocodile song. Oh, she sailed away...)

Which brings me to my flawed theory as to why there exists such a nasty double standard, why there will always be a double standard, why men who have tons of unbridled wanton sex are considered hunky lotharios and women who have tons of unbridled careless stupid sex are considered sleazy unwanted harlots barely more highly evolved than a rat snake.

Here it is: Because women are more powerful. Because women control and contain and embody the most potent of energies this world has to offer: its sex, its reproduction, its libido, all about Earth and the divine feminine and cycles of the oceans and the moon and birth and death and men can only stand back and kneel down and buy flowers and candy and go, wow, and damn, and oh my god, and then beat each other up and instigate wars.


Neat-o.

Tuesday, June 22, 2004

I swear, if somebody ever bought me these, they would have immediate, unfettered access to my vagina. In fact, I would probably offer them Leticia's Vagina GoldCard Insidership, just to be sure.
Good God I am turned on today. The mere sight of a vegetable sub would make me imagine being pressed between the halves of bread, laying comfortably in my garden of lettuce and smearing myself with mayonnaise before being eaten by the one guy in my history class who looks exactly like Jayne from Firefly. Oooh! Oooh! And in the middle of math class, I couldn’t help but imagine myself pressed against the whiteboard, reduced to marker outlines and messy symbols as the mathematical reduction of who Leticia McKenzie is. That could make me come by itself.

But you see, to deal with my addiction, I told myself not to masturbate until next Thursday. This is widening the rift between myself and myself. Suddenly, the two of us aren’t able to get our alone time. I feel isolated from myself. Listen, myself... when I said all those bad words, like you’re a dork and a loser, I didn’t mean it! All I want is to lie with you in a meditative trance where we imagine being sucked into a giant metal tube and turned into Cute Girl-flavored Jello! Really! And all those times I said it wasn’t worth it for the two of us to go outside... it’s because I just couldn’t deal with the thought of you... with... somebody... else...

So I guess you could say I’m in a very controlling relationship with myself. This is not very good. Maybe me and I need some time apart. Perhaps I shall do my math homework, although given my algebra fetish I cannot promise I will sneak off into the closet with my math book and imagine being pressed into pure numerical equations. (It can’t get any worse then when I very nearly came in the middle of the night to the thought of me being listed as an element on the periodic table. Nerdy girls unite! Someday we’ll all find nice, nerdy boys to satisfy our fantasies of being guinea pigs in bizarre genetic experiments! Or at least, they’ll place electrodes all over our naked bodies and then push a button that converts us into raw data to be used in their video game, but then they forget about us and accidentally delete us and decide it would be better after all just to have a great big orgy in the computer lab. Um, this is Leticia McKenzie, and I would like my imagination back...)

Or, perhaps, as a way to get away from myself, I will play more Viewtiful Joe. However, Joe is so visually noisy that it actually gives me a headache, so it’s out of the question. You know what? I would like to take up gardening. Too bad the backyard is full of dog shit, which—as everybody who knows me knows—I am extremely, primally afraid of and cannot go anywhere near. ‘Tis a shame, because I’d love to learn to plant my happy garden and whistle and watch the birds go by and wave to the charming paperboy who misses and hits me with his paper, sending me into my garden and burying me alive. Thankfully, I am reborn in the spring as Leticius McKendactyde. God bless!

But then somebody decides to pluck me and press me into a book and I am stuck there, forever, with a thousand other girls like me with my eccentric personality but we can never talk to each other because we were turned into flowers and are tragically seperated by a thin piece of paper, never to be penetrated...

Then he decides to grind us into his latest drug in order to perform bizarre genetic experiments on his girlfriend but that is another story. All I can say is that she will have blue scales. And wings. And a little ribbon of bare flesh running down the center of her body. And a nice ass. Goodbye!

Leticia

(If you are the boy from my history class who looks like Jayne from Firefly, meet me in the main area at 3:00 tomorrow so that we can go to my house and you can perform bizarre genetic experiments on me. If you can turn me into a can of tuna fish, that would be great. You'll recognize me as the girl who has to circle around the college three times just to find the damn main area.)

(Bring mayonnaise.)
On the bus on the way back home I saw a bunch of little kids going to the community center, and their beautiful instructor telling them that Starbucks is evil, there are too many of them and that they all need to go away. She told them never to buy anything at Starbucks, ever, which I felt was unlikely given that they are six years old (although a six-year-old probably has a good amount of power over their parent's purchasing decisions by the scream-and-whine method).

Now, whenever I have to explain something to myself, I like to hear what it would sound like if I were explaining this to a three-year-old. So, in the space of about five minutes, I had given a quick lesson to the imaginary children in my head on how Starbucks is huge and has lots of money, whereas a samll coffee shop doesn't have so much, so it's good to help out the smaller coffee shop because they're the ones who need it most. Also, if you buy a cup of coffee from Starbucks it goes directly to the rich guys in control of the company, so it just makes the rich richer. Eventually, some money trickles down to the people working at the store; but if you buy a cup of coffee from an independent shop, the money goes directly to the people who work there. Also, it's important for a city to have its own sustainable economy (okay, I don't think a six-year-old could go much farther than this) rather than one dependant upon large corporations which could pack up and move at any moment.

Sadly, the kids got off the bus at the moment I was seriously considering asking the instructor if I could stand in for a moment and give the kids a quick economics lesson (one better than "Starbucks is big and therefore evil"), but it was a good exercise. They say that anybody who cannot explain what they say to a six-year-old is a charlatan. So, practice saying things to imaginary six-year-olds, and the world will make a lot more sense.

Or maybe I just have a really, really, idealistic picture of motherhood.

Whichever.

Monday, June 21, 2004

You know how I feel? I want to cry. I want to cry terribly badly. But instead, I can't, everything that goes on in my head is in an impenetrable fog and instead I'm going to eat dinner, watch that Michael Moore DVD I rented and go to bed. Well, no, I'll try to go to bed, then I'll masturbate about one thousand times, then cry, then sleep, then wake up 2 minutes later to my alarm. Anywhere, here we go:

I am taking summer classes. For the first time ever in Poseidontown, it is SUNNY. It is REALLY HOT OUT. I WANT TO FUCKING PLAY IN THE SUN. But no, I'm taking summer classes this year. Why? My mom said she'd get me a Nintendo DS. That's just what I need: MORE FUCKING VIDEOGAMES. I'm going to be sick all over the dual screens with mip-mapping and Z-buffering.

So yeah, I did find a friend, and I am very happy about that. But, instead of E-mailing her, I think I'm just going to stare at my inbox in a hopeless daze and confront the fact that I, Leticia McKenzie, am just a loser that nobody wants to play with. Then, I'm going to get a new message and be very excited until I realize it's an ad for penis enlargement. Grrr.

So now I sit here and write one of those paragraphs where I write "so now I sit here and write one of those paragraphs where I write, 'so now I just sit here and contemplate what a dork I am when just outside, I could be meeting real people and having real experiences instead of trying to sort out the fog of my own brain and trying to create something from nothing. I could move beyond my own percieved self-worth--or lack thereof--and conquer my inhibition and find myself the most wanted and popular girl since that one popstar went to Poseidontown High. I could be more confident. I could wear tiny stuff like all the other girls wear.'"

...Or, of course, I can take the coward's way out, which is to cram my summer with busywork. You see, usually my summers consist of me promising myself that I will do great and wonderful things and I will realize my spectacular self each and every day as I cherish every one of my moments on God's green earth, but instead usually I just stare at the cieling and tell myself that'll be tomorrow, today I'll stay up until 3:00 playing Zelda. Oh, and tomorrow I'll have a Zelda hangover, so there's no point in doing something life-affirming that day either. Instead, I'll just lie around the house and complain to my hundreds of readers that my life sucks.

So the new strategy, as I started last year, is to take summer classes and to make my self so busy that I never get depressed. Now, usually, I'm terrible at homework and I'm excellent at playing the "I'll do it in one hour" game. But now I am much better at getting things done, and since I am taking some very heavy classes this time I won't even have time to mope, much less do anything life-affirming.

Ah well. I'm POSITIVE the party invintations are going to pile up in my mailbox AS WE SPEAK. You see, the last time I visited Poseidontown High, I was VERY confident! I knocked their socks off with my prowess in confidence. Yes, it was forced exhuberance... but how will people know the name Leticia McKenzie if I do not ADVERTISE? I'm serious; I'm making deep inroads into the Posiedontown High in-crowd. Too bad I wasn't learning anything there, so I decided to buy a college education by the pound at the community college, in which friends are as disposable as tampons (but not as delicate).

Yes, folks, this is how I work. I havea military mind for all things social. Apply 3.5 more kindness points to section 8 in the Third-Degree In Crowd and make sure to smile cutely. This will allow for a strategic defense against the rumors inevitably coming from the direction of the Freshman Lockers. In this event I must initiate the great McHollister strategy, in which I impress the third-graders by helping them with their math, thus elevating me to a third-tier samaritan status granting my entry into the second-degree in crowd which at least has a few anime fans....

An so, here goes the story of Leticia McKenzie. Round and round I go, where I stop, nobody knows. Maybe I oughta just make one friend and make that relationship really special rather than try and conquer the world with an endless array of Leticia Maneuvers. That sounds like a pretty good plan. Perhaps if I invite her to my house and rent Utena I will increase her image of me by 7.9 goodness points...

NEXT TIME: Leticia discusses the Digimon episode that made her cry. Be there... or be square!
I went to Poseidontown’s gay pride celebration today. (Note: Everybody in Poseidontown, and I mean _everybody,_ goes to gay pride. Even the mayor.) It was... eh. I say this a lot, but I just didn’t belong. Gosh, I don’t belong anywhere. Except...

I found a friend! Actually, a friend of a friend, but we got along quite well. You know with all my usual friends I try my best to be as spontaneous and exhuberant as possible so that they’ll like me, and it always seemed very... fake. With this girl, I was just relaxed, no longer taking any pains to prove I’m unique or different. For one day, I was just another girl, and that was something really special.

So, I decided something, in my head. No more forced exhuberance. No more affected spring in my step. No more me trying to be queen of the world. I think what my friends love best about me is being who I am when I don’t think I’m Miss Poseidontown, when I just let go and forget about my reputation and act like myself. Funny then, that’s that’s when I act the _least_ weird and not the most... but it was a lot of fun just to be the ordinary girl from around the block and not somebody who’s constantly in your face.

Now I’m just trying to get myself to sleep. I am still very depressed, and I’m wondering if antidepressants (as my mom keeps telling me) aren’t such a bad idea... or maybe they are. I’m not sure. I’ve been on two meds and freaked the fuck out on both. Maybe I just need to get ahead on my own power and find someplace where I can truly say I’m happy. Sure, sure, I love my friends and I love Poseidontown, but I have yet to find someplace where I really feel like I’m applying myself and my soul.

But, don't worry. I'll find it.

Watch me.

Friday, June 18, 2004

You my have noticed my tendency to describe attractive women as "ghostlike." Well, there you go. I have ghost-philia. I can't get over the idea that I could pass through this girl if she so decided to disperse her ethereal particles. I could bottle her up and never let her go. Oh yeah.

No, no, that's just nonsense. I have decided: I _do_ want a boy, but not some big, though man with a chainsaw and a gruff voice who says, "hey? Where's my woman!" ... Actually, on second thought, maybe I do, but as long as he promises to find new and interesting ways to use his chainsaw.

The reason I decided to go on my blog and write nonsense is because I am not feeling well. On the way home on the bus I kept falling in and out of sleep. I feel like I am halfway existing. Maybe this explains the ghost thing; I am a ghost myself, floating throughout the universe in search of an earthbound vessel.

One new thing I learned is not to say I'm okay when I'm not. About a year ago I started saying, "no, I'm not okay" when somebody asked me how I am (somebody who is a friend of mine) and I am not actually okay. The problem is, most of the time I'm not okay, there's always something mmissing and I can never quite find it, but I suppose that's just how life is, dammit.

I dream of settling down someday, and I love to imagine living in a cottage somewhere and writing novels and playing with my lovely children at the church picnic inbetween writing trashy romance novels, but the truth is I'm just a teenager, and maybe I ought to make do with what I have instead of keep imagining what things would be like if I had more. After all, I have myself, and that's what everybody starts with.

You know what the problem is? I canot get along with myself. True. I used to go to yoga but I HATED it (as I explained to my mentor today) because my inner dialogue (not monologue, fucking dialogue) constantly rambles no matter how hard I try to focus on my pose or breath away the worries (are your worries adequately whisked, The Sneak?). So now, I just hate being alone with myself, because there is no way to reconcile myself and myself on key points such as what we will do tomorrow or why it is that we are so freaking lonely even though we perpetually drive each other nuts. Myself and myself need some serious relationship counseling, people.

I think I'll just go on a nice beach trip with myself, and sit on the dock and stare at the setting sun, with my arm around myself, whispering sweet nothings into my ear as I drift off to sleep in my arms...

Perfect. That'll work. I will call you back when myself and I are on speaking terms again.

Leticia

(Myself and Myself Incorporated: Reconciling Your Two Halves since 1837)

Thursday, June 17, 2004

Hello everybody! Today we talk about nudism. Seriously. I’m not holding back or getting afraid of what I write this time. It’s full-frontal Leticia day here in th blogosphere.

You know, yestserday I got really angry when I saw a beer ad depicting a bottle of the demon drink perched in front of a sign reading “nude beach.” Why did this make me angry, you ask? Well...

- It perpetuates the idea that nude beaches are frighteningly sexual places in which orgies take place by the hour
- It confirms my suspicion that, if this were true, every single American would want to go to one.

So I just sort of brooded and counted the number of beer ads I saw just to prove that we’re living in a dystopic science fiction novel (John Anderton! You could use a Guiness) and it hit me... there is nothing wrong with me. There is EVERYTHING wrong with everybody else. Jeebus. This is what we think about all day, we all just want beer and sex. Hell, I’m fairly certain I could have all the beer and the sex in the world if I wanted any (charming my way into Poseidontown’s underworld of beer and sex would not be difficult for master seductress Leticia)... but what I really want is a friend, as I have repeated numerous times in the oh-so-pitiful manner that I’m so good at.

Well I had a dream last night. It was pouring rain at my community college and I was wearing nothing but a shirt and a skirt (my, um, uplink was indeed exposed to the elements). But the ghostlike woman who was darting around the place? No, she was naked. NAKED! Not only was she naked, but she eminated so many Cooler-Than-You vibes that I was about to choke on their stench.

The Guardian did a column basically mocking the Americans for going nutso about the Boob and at the same time paying out the nose for pictures of boobs that are only slightly covered, between the covers of Maxim (but oh, the articles!). In Britain, I suppose, everybody knows the tabloids are fucking ridiculous (at least, I imagine, out of respect from the British; come on, while I was in London, the big story across the tabloids was that Beckham had signed a Madrid conspirator’s birthday card), but here in America, we REALLY THINK we’re watching art when we turn on the TV on prime time. You can show all the cleavage you want and it’s okay, you can do a whole song alluding to sexual coercion and male dominance and it’s peachy keen family fun, but by golly if the mom spot busts loose and the impenetrable mystery of how we our fed as babies comes unbrassiered, by golly, what will we tell the cheeeeildren?!

As any nudist knows, a naked boob is not half as sexual as looking at a boob that is slightly covered and wondering what’s underneath it. It’s that teasing that is predominant in modern fashion, and that is why I can walk down the street and count the number of V-necks and run out of toes before I get to the bus stop. However, if a woman wants to reclaim her body and show it, in all it’s non-sexual usefulness, shamelessly, as an equal part of what makes her human, by golly she needs a new record out and a Super Bowl with which to use her boob as an act of curtailment in order to do it. If we don’t get used to the sight of the nipple, which was, you know, what your mother fed you with (sorry to break it to you...), then it will FOREVER be controlled by male power and sexual shame.

So! That brings me to today, when I had this dream, and it had the naked woman running through the rain without a care in the world and me, soaking wet in my shirt and skirt and wondering what the hell that ghostlike girl was doing, thinking she was stupid for wasting all her spiritual energy on a streak, but knowing what I REALLY wanted was to run up to her and ask her, “what are you doing? Hey! I’ll join. Is that all right? I mean, it must get lonely running around in the pouring rain naked with the knowledge that you’re merely a stray thought in Leticia’s brain, merely a manifestation of some deep-seated insecurity...” But instead, I just stood there, thought about how dumb she was, and left, remembering how much she looked like... a ghoul... an apparition of the spirit that is really inside me.

That brings me to today, at which point I can look out my window and see—get this—there are a bunch of little kids playing naked in a sprinkler but two backyards from me. There IS hope for the world. And that is why I will be the bestest mother who ever lived, as soon as I get my Mothering Liscence and I give ONE BOY (one boy, count ‘em, ONE BOY IN THE WHOLE WORLD, but girls can form a line) permission to enter the Sacred Temple of Leticia and give me the fucking of my life, at which point, a little Mini-Leticia will pop out, and good God I will put money down that she will be the most well-adjusted kid since Thoreau when she turns twelve. Mark my words. I will kick ASS as a mother.

I suppose I should bring all this rambling to a conclusion, which is that we are all naked, not because we’re naked underneath our clothing but when we all wear piles of designer clothing and fancy jackets in the scorching heat of summer we must look fucking stupid to all the alien probes that are doubtlessly orbiting our atmosphere as our daily existence is broadcast on the Andromedan News Channel: Earth news, squared and factored.

And they are laughing their ASSES off about the Atkins diet but that is another rant. (Public service announcement: Carbohydrates are what human beings run on. Steak will clog your arteries like nobody’s business. Junk food is low in carbs, that’s part of why they call it JUNK FOOD. Anything that says "low fat" on the box is, by definition, bad for you. If you’re going to eat junk food, by golly don’t eat anything that says "low fat" and buy into the illusion. Personally, though, I prefer the things like, you know, BREAD. And fruit. And vegetables. They may be sky-high in carbs, but you won’t keel over and die and/or remain fat, slumped over in your chair shouting to the heavens, "Why, Dr. Phil?! Why?!")

(Oh, and some people are just fat. The point is to be healthy. Do not measure yourself in pounds; if you eat well and you exercise, you’re damn well good enough for God, right?)

Tuesday, June 15, 2004

I feel terrible this morning. I took an hour and a half to get out of bed. I want to be swallowed up by a swirling black miasma with a comforting voice that says, "Don't worry, Leticia, all will be explained." Or maybe a giant unicorn. I haven't decided yet.

Monday, June 14, 2004

I'm sure I was supposed to post some incredible existential quandrary that reveals all the inner secrets of womanhood, but I read too many comic books and now all I can say is that the comic book Pita-Ten is awesome, I never thought I'd like a girly-girly Japanese romance comic (they're all the rage), tofu is good, and my head hurts. But my head ALWAYS hurts, so instead I'll just say: eat your veggies and tune in next time for more wacky hijinks. Su!

Sunday, June 13, 2004

Tom Tomorrow, who I usually respect, has a few things to say about Ted Rall. Apparently, Rall made some comments about how Reagan, in his opinion, is currently frying in hell and he went into disturbing detail (no quote... it's just too gruesome). Here's what Tom had to say:

Here's the thing: Rall posts this on his blog, which at a guess has maybe 5,000 to 10,000 people reading it. Drudge links to it--suddenly it's been spread to millions. Hannity and Colmes have him on the show--a few hundred thousand more viewers are suddenly offended.

So if all these right wingers are so terribly offended by Rall's words, then don't Drudge and Hannity share responsibility for that? I mean, it was a clearly a dashed-off blog entry for a few thousand readers--and suddenly thanks to Hannity & Drudge, millions of people are offended.


Hey! What does that sound like? I'm hearing the familliar "why did those journalists have to show us what's really happening in Abu Ghraib? Why can't the New York Times run more HAPPY stories on Iraq?" arguments faintly calling from the distance.

Listen, as Tom acknowledged, Reagan was an old man with Alzheimer's. It was his time to pass on, and we need to let him have that with dignity and respect. During his life he was a liar and a cheat and a killer, but one of the things that we liberals do (at least, I hope we do) is that we give people dignity at least in their death.

This is not the time to be distorting Reagan's "legacy" and claiming he was the most popular president ever, and I applaud the blogosphere's efforts to curtail some of that wishful thinking. However, we just don't delight in the deaths of people who pose no threat, especially those who are wasting away in nursing homes, forgetting that they were President and racked up the worst deficit in history while simultaneously funding terrorists under-the-counter to overthrow a Democratically elected government in the Middle East.

And then there's our friend Kos. He made an "ill-considered" (Tom's words) remark after the contractors in Falluja were killed, saying that "he felt nothing" and "screw them." Kos's "apology" is insincere and indefensible. No matter how horrific your circumstances, no matter how horrible your childhood, no matter how patriotic your upbringing is, words are words, and if you celebrate or dismiss somebody's death, as Rall and Kos have done, you are going to be ridiculed. Period. It doesn't matter if your words are reprinted once or a hundred times or ten thousand times, they're still the same words and you still need to stand behind them. Doing the Jayson Blair retreat to "my awful childhood" as an excuse to speak with impunity is weak in character and repugnant.

Look, I can forgive what Kos said. I think we all can. We all do really stupid things and say really awful things sometimes. What we do, because we're grown-ups and we can do these things, is that we apologize. We say, "I'm sorry." That's IT. We do not say, for instance, "I'm sorry, but the REAL tragedy is..." or "I'm sorry, but it had to do with my childhood..." no matter how intelligent your prose our righteous your tone. Nobody deserves to die, not even cheats or thieves or liars, and when you desecrate somebody's funeral you have the good sense to take a step back and say, "I'm sorry, friend, I forgot I was a human being for a second."

We all live in the same world and breathe the same air and gaze at the same sky as our Republican friends, as the al-Qaeda terrorists, as the Contras and as the Iraqi civilians and as the Palestinian dissidents and as the wonderful girl next door. You know what we do in this kind of world? We suck it up. We swallow our pride. We have our fights and our discussions and our laughs and our tears and our jabs and our nerve-pinching arguments, but we are big enough to realize that at the end of the day, we are all human beings and we need to play nice and share. Sometimes, as with terrorists, we have to use violence to fight back; but we have to recognize that it's for the good of the world, it's for the safety of today and not for a lofty, distant goal of peace.

My next case study of liberals turning mean is with our friend, Rush Limbaugh. This guy continuously disenfranchised the poor and the needy as being lazy and stupid and--most notably--claimed that drug addicts should be given zero tolence and thrown in jail. Turns out he was popping OxyContins by the truckload; illegally smuggled OxyContins, I might add, with doctor shopping to boot. He couldn't live up to his own standard for the world; he's a sad, sick man.

Michael Moore had a hilarious routine on his book tour about how Rush Limbaugh continuously argued for drug addicts to be thrown in jail and for the key to be thrown away; and well, what'd'ya know, Rush is right up there with them and jail time doesn't sound so good to him any more. At the time, Rush was detoxing at a country club rehab center; Moore said (and this is from memory, but it's very close) "I want all the drug addicts off the streets and jails and into that rehab center to be treated; and I want Rush Limbaugh thrown in jail and the key thrown away!" to massive applause.

Now, again, Rush is a cheat and a liar and a slimeball. And yet, his intensely concentrated group of fanatics seem to enjoy his boyish glee and his carefree demeanor as he sorts out politics into the simple stuff (tax cuts = good, liberal media = bad). So when it turned out that he was a seriously addicted person, someone in terrible need of medical attention, he got a very sincere outpouring of good will from the "liberal media" he so constantly disparaged; but as the Moore and the lefty bloggers poured on the righteous fury, I felt like we lost a real opportunity to win, you know, converts.

We had an opportunity here. Rush was desperate. He had finally come to his senses after spending a good chunk of his life in DopeLand. He recognized that with all the silver cups and luxury cars that come along with living the high life, one can still feel life-threatening mental pain, the pain suffered by poor Americans every day who are living a paycheck away from homelessness. We could show him that there is a real belief system around reaching out and helping people like him, desperate people like him, and it is called liberalism. We'd love you to join. Would you like a pamphlet?

Come on. He's Rush Limbaugh. He's like the queen bee of conservatives. If we could get him to see the left, even for just a short while, we could have showed the world what we're really about: compassion in a time in which aggression is in vogue. Instead, we giggled and laughed and taunted and decided we were perfectly content in our Autobots-and-Decepticons world of liberals versus conservatives. Not a good idea, if we ever intend on winning a majority.

So there you have it, folks. Tune in next time and I'll say something about videogames.
Yeah, the reason I've been out of it lately is... Zelda: Ocarina of Time. I saw the light. No longer do I need to visit GameFAQs every five minutes. I feel like Link... I am Link... I think about things in terms of pots and rupees and hookshots and long-winded cutscenes...

Twice I have stayed up until four in the morning playing that game. My name is Leticia... and I'm a... WAAAH!
Today, we talk about Leticia’s youthful role models and the effect they have on her as an adult. Bring popcorn.

Back in Hicksburg, our favorite backwoods Homophobes-R-Us factory town, I was raised by my peers to be a good little girl who talked about good little girl things. By way of the Internet I learned naughty things, such as how the male body operates and what to do about my little visitor, but for the most part I was squeaky clean. So, when everything changed and we moved up to Poseidontown, where the hippies roam freely without shirts and the college students drink to excess and back, it was quite a culture shock. Back then I thought it was the best thing that ever happened to me, but now I’m not quite so lenient.

I met my role models, the bad kids, who were infinitely nicer to me than the good kids back in Hicksburg. They taught me lots of things, like how to hold a protest without pissing off riot cops, or how to bicycle-chain a line of people as a means of obstruction. (I did not get to participate in these events; it was a slow year for activism in Hippie-land.) They drank and they smoked and they did lots of other dumb things, but they were still my friends and I figured DARE had pretty well innoculated me against such peer pressure. Besides, I didn’t have anywhere else to go...

Then, of course, they all moved on to greener pastures and I was stuck in high school. I lamented this, of course, but I knew that they would become bitter and cyncial nine-to-fivers and I still had years to go of building chemical models and solving complex equations inbetween games of Mega Man. So just now I saw them all again at a very heartfelt party, and this is what I learned:

Substance abuse does not go away with maturity. Seriously folks, do not take this stuff as a teenager. Drinking or smoking is a dumb fucking idea no matter what age you are, but as a teenager the damage is most permanent, and the addiction is most unshakable. I don’t think I have a single friend who hasn’t tried the Bad Stuff and NONE of them have come away from it feeling more mature or like they’ve escaped from their problems. As I plan to explain to my kids when I’m a mother, pot makes you forget about your problems for about three hours, at which point you have even more (not to mention three wasted hours).

So, all of them were drinking various substances and smoking various substances, harder than I had ever known them to do as Those Immature Teenagers, and they offered me some and I didn’t have the guts to say, "I don’t drink beer, it makes my boobs shrivel up and fall off." I did, however, not drink a sip, which is my plan for life, as the combination of Leticia and alcohol is certain to react in the form of one doped-out loser. (I’m serious; I have anxiety AND I’m a space case, if I drank even a pint of alcohol I would never be able to stop and the next thing I would know I would be in a room full of crying old men and saying, "But I’m not an alco--WAAAAH!")

So, not only were they no longer possessing the rebellious vigor which drove them to party in the Bad Parts of Town in the first place, they seemed downright bitter. I know I’m not one to talk, Ms. There’s No Hope for Humanity So As Long As Star Wars Is Not Paying for my College Education, but there was just no hope left in the room after the first few swigs of beer. When discussion turned to smoking pot I turned tail and ran.

(No, I called my mom, who swung by promptly in her Mom-o-van. Engage!)

Moreover, though... I’m shy. There was a girl there who was the loveliest, most outgoing girl I had ever met, but she seemed very out-of-touch with reality (failing to balance properly or to make eye contact), which was explained by her burning red cheeks. That’s right, she looked drunk even before the party started, and that didn’t stop her from being hilarious and sweet to everybody who was there; but I know that, if I were like her and I had to get my social cajones from the happy sauce, I would never get myself out of it. And then, if I did manage to quit drinking, I would be even less outgoing than I started and I would have to learn how to be outgoing all over again.

Also, if I got drunk, I would be responsible for everything I did. What if I, as the familiar story goes, woke up in bed with some guy I don’t know? What if I let everybody grope my breasts and the next day, I’m yesterday’s news as far as my dating pool is concerned? What if I make somebody angry or tell a big secret or find the courage to take my clothes off in public but in the WRONG SITUATION, and I have to face the consequences the next day, with a hangover? I do not understand the appeal of drinking something that makes you act like an idiot, thank you very much.

So I just sit at home, stare at the ceiling and wonder what happened to my youthful role models. They went off and got drunk is what happened. It doesn’t make me all that angry; they’re mature about it and they know it’s their fault they did it, and it doesn’t stop them at all from being brilliant, wonderful people.. but I’d LIKE to find some new friends that don’t need liquid courage to have a party, and that means I’m going to take up the needle and thread and learn to fucking KNIT like all the cool kids are doing.

I’ll make a pretty scarf and then I’ll be popular. That’s it.

Thursday, June 10, 2004

The thing about being appreciated is that you never know how to respond to it, because every girl in the world wants to be appreciated but you never want to make an emotional investment.

Take this boy, a dear friend of mine, who wants to turn me into a cookie (enormous apologies to this person, who is currently reading this); I love him and, deep down inside, really really want him to turn me into a cookie and eat me with hot chocolate and marshmallows. At the same time, I am a very good girl and need to keep all approaching boys at arm's length at safety reasons.

Yet, I couldn't just say "don't say that," because that would be dishonest, and I couldn't say "oooh yeah baby" because that would be plunging helter-skelter into the terrifying Man Nebula and I don't know what I would do, and I can't take anywhere in thte middle because that makes me look like a waffle AND it establishes probably the deepest relationship of all, the one where we look at each other nervously at the bus stop and cough.

So I hope this works out well. I really really want a boy to cuddle me and whisper into my ear, "and you'll have blue frosting and chocolate chips..." but not... right... now. Give me some time, world. Once I've established a foothold in the World of Women, I can begin my expansion into the scary, yet lovable World of Men. And don't worry, SOMEDAY I'll meet a very nice man (possibly I've already met him) who I feel safe enough around that he can swallow me whole. Ooh yeah.

First I'll establish a base inside of (name withheld,) and then move into prime territories of the (names withheld) regions, before commencing my grand melee inside of--

Wait a second, didn't a really sexy woman kiss me yesterday?

FUCK! And I thought I had everything figured out. Back to the drawing board...
I dreamt about an adorable young girl with white powdery makeup and a bright red kimono who was actually a con artist and you should stay away from her at all costs.

...Weird.
A friend of mine, over the Internet, told me he fantasizes of turning me into a gingerbread cookie.

No.. boy.. has.. ever.. told.. me.. that.

And it's gross.

But no boy has ever told me that.

Wah!

Wednesday, June 09, 2004

She looks like a ghoul.

No, I'm serious. But she's the most gorgeous ghoul you ever met. She's also kinda fluffy, so I could probably roll her in flour and fluff her if I so desired, with her consent of course. Of course, the fact that my brain is already to the Rolling-in-Flour-and-Fluffing phase signifies my current mentality, which is hopelessly bored. And so, my relationships progress from holy-shit,-she-says-I'm-sexy-and-kisses-me-and-I've-liked-her-for-quite-a-while-but-wait-a-minute-aren't-I-supposed-to-like-boys? to ooh-that-would-be-fun-but-only-if-I-brought-strawberries.

In fact, our next conversation would go exactly like this:

LETICIA: Hi, listen, I...
BAD LETICIA: Come on, Letty, this is your big chance. Screw this one up, and you'll never date another boy, girl, or intersexual ever again. So, just breathe really deep, and say the big words, which are
THE GIRL: Hey, gorgeous, you're just about the finest thing I ever laid eyes upon. Why don't you swing over to my house and I can run you through my milkshake machine-- I mean help me with my math homework?
GOOD LETICIA: No! No! Just be nautral. She likes you that way. Remember, you are loved for your flaws. I saw that on a website once. It was about how to deal with being shy, and it had that one awful ad for some Bill Murray film and you hated the ad because it preyed upon shy people and, of course, all ads do that because corporate motherfuckers are desperate Nazi fucks who would fucking fucking fucking
BAD LETICIA: Haw haw! Too nervous, Leticia? Maybe you had too many sodas yesterday! Of course, you didn't have ANY sodas, because you don't drink caffiene, but maybe that Dilbert comic you read five minutes ago really disrupted your cognition, but
LETICIA: I-- I gotta go.
THE GIRL: What's the matter? Because...
GOOD LETICIA: But, you see, THIS ad, the content of the website lulled you in into a false sense of security and then BAM! right in your weak spot. Ouch!
THE GIRL: there are lots of sexy women at my house and they will sing as your bones are crushed into tiny bits by the giant windmill thingy at the bottom of the machine
GOOD LETICIA: Why don't you read some of that E-mail you get, Leticia? Ever? I mean, I'm sure the people you get are nice..
BAD LETICIA: Haw haw! You read your E-mail four days ago, last time I checked, and BECAUSE you read that E-mail correcting your grammar now you're bent out of shape and babbling in front of the girl who wants to take you to an evening of milkshake-making, HELLO?
THE GIRL: But, don't worry, if you're just a loser, I can go find some snotty, horny boy and run him through the machine, but he'll be an icky green milkshake, not a tasty, cherry-flavored one like you would make. Oh, how I long for the taste of your milkshake...
GOOD LETICIA: Oh, but that ONE E-mail was SO MEMORABLE, you know, the guy, who told the story, you know, about his cat, and the adventures it had..
LETIICA: EVERYBODY SHUT UP!

POOF!!

THE GIRL (in the REAL world): Leticia, is something wrong?
LETICIA: No, it's just...
THE GIRL: Because, you know, if you don't like me, that's okay, I mean, you shout "EVERYBODY SHUT UP" and all just when I finish talking about hydroponic trigonomical defibulators..
LETICIA: No! That's not it!
THE GIRL: Why did I think studying with a girl would be a good idea? Jesus, you're just like all the men I meet, all you do is space out and you--
LETICIA: No! I'm different! See! I've got a vagina! I--
THE GIRL: Good-bye!

(SLAM)

GOOD LETICIA: And first, the cat peed on his rug, and then the toaster exploded, and boy, you should have seen his eyes, they were as big as dinner plates...
(Leticia cries. Somebody plays beautiful violin music and everything fades out.)
(Then the violin plays goes to snuggle with her perfect boyfriend and Leticia cries some more.)

--

Perfect! Beautiful! Oscars all around. Goodbye!

(Yes, I just saw Adaptation, and yes, I am very, very sorry.)
I got kissed by a woman today.

I don't know how I feel about that.

Tuesday, June 08, 2004

"Just a Girl who Can't Say No," as reprinted in the February issue of Harper's Magazine:

From the lyrics to "All Things to All Men," a song from Pornography: The Musical, written by poet Simon Armitage, in which women sing about thir experiences in the adult-film industry. The musical was broadcast on British television last fall.

Yesterday lying alone in a bedroom
Yesterday crying and dying of boredom
But I was a showgirl, destined for stardom

Today I'm the nurse getting off with the doctor
Tomorrow I'm shocked by the driving instructor

Today I'm the teacher who fancies the student
Tonight I'm the student who fancies the teacher
Tomorrow it's fun with a nun and a preacher

Today I'm the girl with a crush on her sister
Tonight I'm the traitor who teases the jailor
Tomorrow I'm taken down south by a sailor

Today I'm surprised by the size of the postman
Tonight I'm alone in the house with a truncheon
Tomorrow I'm frisked by a team of policemen

Today I'm the missus who calls for a plumber
Tonight I'm the stripper who swallows a python
Then bends over backward to help out the juggler
Tomorrow I'm doused with a hose by a fireman

Today I'm a virgin at home on her lonesome
Who's joined by a soldier who makes it a twosome
Who's come with his brother who makes it a threesome
Who's come with his uncle who makes it a foursome
Then in walks a swordsman, an oarsman, a horseman,
And five or six pillaging Norsemen--it's awesome

The typist, the gymnast, the tart, and the matron
Yesterday lying alone in a bedroom
Yesterday crying and dying of boredom
But destined for stardom

Monday, June 07, 2004

Well, my head hurts like a mofo again, so I don't feel like writing anything. I'm in one of my moods where I keep thinking too much, and I can't look at something or think about something without analyzing it ten different ways. I would like to know other people with this condition. It helps when I'm taking a test, but hoo boy, if I have to take six buses in one day (as I did today), it leads to spacing-out of horrendous proportions. I'd like one of those Fahrenheit 451 mind-numbers, thank you very much.

Leticia

(No, what I should do is READ A FUCKING BOOK, but I'm afraid of, you know, reading things early in the day. Kind of fucks up my writing. So, what do I do? I psychoanalyze every gameplay dynamic in level three of Sonic Heroes, before reliving the greatest moments of the Clinton Wars all from the comfort of my head slumped over my backpack like a depressed, stone mother hen. Uh, with her backpack. Or, her babies that is. Her babies.)

(You know, I once saw a mother hen at the zoo and it reminds me of the complex hydroponic fluorescents that fluctuate erratically at the starboard--) (BAM!--Suzy hits Leticia over the head with a log)
I had a dream that I was blogging and I made some joke about "WMD's New Tuesday."

Har! Har! Har!

Sunday, June 06, 2004

Yesterday I was bored and had nothing to do and I was depressed because I had a sleepover at Dante's house (and Dante just _makes_ me depressed; especially when his house is involved, because it has a freaky evil presence that keeps me on my toes), and so when I got home and the house was empty, I did the unthinkable and cleaned the kitchen.

Now, just so you know, I'm going to be the worst housewife in the history of housewifery when I grow up and get married and find a beautiful husband with the uncanny ability to eat his wife and then promptly regurgitate her, because I am a slob. (No, he will regurgitate me because I would rather not be digested, as alluring as that sounds. I will be a bad housewife because I am a slob.) My house frequently looks like it was hit by a hurricane. My game controllers are strewn about in such a mess that my mom cannot tell a GameCube from a Saturn; and, of course, the dishes pile up to be as big as a mountain, because my mom is a slob too and was kind enough to pass the gene to me.

So! I go to thinking. Actually, I got to not-thinking, which helped, because I was very stressed out that day. You see, I had been at a friend's graduation at the hippie school, and I felt sad because I was going to graduate from No-Name U., the community college, with nobody who will recognize me to present my diploma. (Besides, their high school graduation will have, like, five people. This will be a distinction for me, oh girl who volunteers to go to college early, but it won't be very glamorous.) The teachers also talked about everything wonderful about the students they were graduating, and I thought... since I'm so private all the time, and I don't really talk all that much... what would they say about me, oh girl who was intellectually asleep at her time in the school? Even if I did come back just to graduate here, what would they say besides the usual things that I'm nice and I like videogames?

Oh, but I met Amazing Girl there, who will henceforth be referred to by nothing but Amazing Girl. You see, AG can talk, write, paint, draw, and think better than your average, um, 270-and-a-half-year-old, and I've always looked up to her while we were both at the school (not very long). She also has a beautiful boyfriend, naturally, and they're engaged to be married (engage! Make it so!), and she's going to study to be a nurse and a painter and then buy a farm and live there forever and ever and have lots of babies (she is also very blunt, which is one of the best things about her; if she needs to tell you something, she will). I was amazed by this vision (nothing, but NOTHING, like my fantasy of being a trashy housewife/novelist that everybody thinks is a ditz but is actually happier than everybody else) and told her, "you've planned out the most wonderful life!" I was tempted to say something like, "It's Harvest Moon: A Wonderful Life for Amazing Girl" but that would be both cheesy and obscure, although that is what I do best.

So! Back at home, moping about this and various other things, I tried to clear my mind and think about nothing at all. This helped, because later I thought... now that my tenant has moved out (sad...), and there's nobody to clean the dishes, and I want to be a housewife when I grow up, and I want to buy Harvest Moon so that I can do boring chores and stare at butterflies and think about boys... I ought to do the unthinkable and clean the kitchen. Fifteen Jet Set Radio songs later, the sink sparkled with no-dishedness, the cupboards were full with our full supply of things on which to eat, and our dishwasher had another load ready to go. I had completed level 1 of Harvest Moon: Leticia's Dishwasher. Life was good.

Now... I just need a boyfriend.

Leticia

(No no no! I am perfectly self-sufficient, or at least me and the Sonic action figure that stares at me lovingly from the top of my computer. You do love me, right, Sonic?)
I'm back from my unexcused absence just to note: my letter to IGN was printed on IGNPS2, and responded to quite nicely. (It was given the heading, "Weaktrix.")

Thursday, June 03, 2004

Amnesty International says that human rights are at fifty-year low, thanks to groups such as al-Qaeda and the United States of America. You heard that right: al-Qaeda and the US in the same breath. Ohhhh shit.

Oh, and here's what Amnesty has to say about Israel: "Amnesty also rounded on the Israeli forces who had killed more than 600 Palestinians last year, including 100 children." Yes, the killing of Palestinians is a statistic. UN, it's time to rein this country in.

(It's also time to stop feeling false sympathy for Israel. Yes, the formation of Israel was historic and the abuses suffered by the Jews were horrific. This, however, should not give them a free pass to pass their abuse on to others.)

(Of course, this does not exculpate the Palestinians; the difference is that the violence committed by Palestinians has been by terrorists, the violence committed by Israel against Palestine has been state-sanctioned.)

(Neither, of course, is better, but terrrorists can be dealt with using police action, whereas rogue states need to be dealt with by cutting off diplomatic assistance. Let's establish a Palestinian state that can prosecute the Palestinian terrorists.)

(And, just in case I haven't made this clear before, don't pick up a gun to fight Israel. You try and take an AK-47 against the most well-funded nation in the Middle East and you'll be dead before you can say "I can die with--URK!" Violence is futile and only gives Sharon an excuse to slaughter another picnic full of Palestinians.)

(Not a good excuse, mind you, but one that seems to pass in the eyes of the US officials that keep sending him his endless pipeline of money in hopes that he can conquer the Promised Land so that the Religious Right can ascend to Heaven.)
My personal nightmare, courtesy of the Guardian.
What I was talking about was that all day I've been walking around in something of a stupor. This isn't so abnormal for me, but the school year has just ended, so I've just been kind of... wandering. The sad thing is, my brain has been wandering, and I don't like that because it tends to drag my body with it, and my body just spent two hours looking at the ceiling, refusing to get up but also refusing to go to sleep.

I suppose I should go find somebody to talk to and not writee on my stupid blog. But, I needed something to write on and somebody to write to, so there you go. I thought about playing videogames, but that would make me think too much (my mind wanders). I thought about playing Advance Wars 2, which would occupy my brain, but I felt that would be too hard. I thought about drawing, but that would take too much brainpower. I thought about sleeping, but I hadn't made dinner yet. I thought about making dinner, but that would require both moving and too much brainpower. So I just did nothing, for TWO HOURS, which kind of spits on the "live in the moment" philosophy that my mom always hammers into my brain.

I feel better after I masturbate because it means that at least SOMEBODY cares for me in a sexual way, even if it's just myself, and lately I've been just living in my own personal bubble, which is fine for when I have homework. Now it's just my personal hell, with that terrible voice in my head always telling my I'm thinking wrong or not doing something right.

I get to see a woman I haven't seen in a long time in a few days, a woman who was my mother figure for the better part of my teenage-hood and without whom I do not know where I would be. She loved me enough to take me to coffee periodically and listen to me bitch just because she knew how much I needed it. She would always listen and she would ask before she talked and she always meant the best for me.

So now I should be really happy to see her again, but I'm not, and this is the only reason why: I'm terrified I'm not going to impress her enough. I need to show her how much more mature I am. I need to have a conversation with energy levels in the high nineties. I feel this so much that I was writing down--in the middle of writing class--what I was going to say to her, under the heading "talking points."

And what I never realized (and still don't) is that this woman doesn't love the Leticia who pines after her own success and draws up complicated charts and graphs out of her own insecurity, but the Leticia who asks for love and nothing more, the Leticia who knows she isn't perfect and yet still strives to be the best woman she can be. More than that, though, I think the Leticia she loves best is the one she barely ever sees, the one who lets her guard down just for a brief moment when she's with a friend.

I could learn a lot from her.

Leticia
There is no way in hell I am going to be able to write today, so let's be brief:

I really, really miss blogging about sex. No, really. Whoah! Did you just notice that? The clouds of self-consciousness that have been hanging around me just... faded. I AM ADDICTED TO THIS PRACTICE. This is not so good, so I probably shouldn't tell you about being boiled in a pot or some nonsense.

So! I suppose I'll talk about politics today. Yes that's right. Um, so, how about that, you know, war? The one that's going south in a hurry? Yeah, thought so too. Nice weather, huh? ...

Okay, so what I really wanted to describe to you was (here we go...) being a beauitful housewife and sweeping my kitchen when suddenly... I notice something is wrong with the mechanical trash can, and so I daintily put my hand over my mouth and lean inside to see what's wrong and SNAP! the trash can closes its mechanical jaws on me, and I struggle to break free as the trash can eats me up.

...

THERE. IT'S OUT OF MY HEAD. NOW GO AWAY.

...

Brielle once asked me what makes me tick. This, I hate to say it, makes me tick.

I am going to go to my room and cry now.

Tuesday, June 01, 2004

Spam Spam Spam Spam!

Okay, after the ten thousandth E-mail inquiring about my penis size (I think it's negative), I am ready to throw in the towel with Yahoo! Mail. Actually, the tipping point was getting E-mails telling me that messages SENT FROM MY ACCOUNT were being blocked by other servers because they were obviously spam, meaning that somebody's using my account to route spam. Not good. Can anybody tell me what to do about this?

Anyway, being that I have a Blogger account I have signed up for Gmail. Simply replace "yahoo.com" with "gmail.com" if you want to reach me from now on. If I cannot find a way to stop the spam being sent through my account at Yahoo I will most likely let it idle and be shut down, for the good of the world. This time I will do things right; I will not post my full E-mail address on this website, I'll just do something clever and let you figure it out.

Oh and, here's a new rule with E-mail: don't send attachments. If you want to show me a picture, you may send me a link to its location on the Internet, but if I see an attachment I'm likely to assume it's a virus. In general, when you're the author of a weblog you get jittery about these things.

Thank you very much! And, to those unfortunate people who clicked on my Gontermania link... I am very, very sorry.
At some point or another, every Sonic fan in America has been caught up in the phenomenon known as... Gontermania.

Read it and weep.

...I mean, really really weep.

(Edit: Actually, what you really oughta see is the Jen White Collection over at the Sisto Files. That made me laugh myself to stitches when I was, oh, twelve years old. Seriously though, only those with strong constitutions should apply. This stuff will haunt your nightmares.)
A fantasy:

I did kind of enjoy imagining myself and my women friends relaxing in a serene hot spring, taking in the sights and the smells when suddenly, a gurgling sound alerts us to that there is something wrong. Suddenly all the water begins to swirl into the bottom of the pond, and we grab onto a ledge for dear life but it is no use as we are haplessly sucked in. A tough, bulky guy with a bandanna and a leather jacket (particularly Bass Armstrong from Dead or Alive, but don't tell anybody) grins to himself and chuckles as he swings around the plug he has liberated, while in the background, me and my lady friends are swept down the drain. Perfect.
My chemistry class is almost over. This makes me sad because I’m going to miss the beautiful women who sat at my lab table and were always willing to help. This is another one of those instances in which I have formed my first real adult friendships, or so it feels, only for them to break apart when class ends and everybody goes back to drifting through the sea of people at the community college.

I love science and I’ve always yearned for a good science class, but being that the Cold War is over (and we no longer have to fear Soviets in on the moon), all the schools I’ve gone to have rather skimped on the science. Throughout my schooling I’ve always felt as though I have been merely drifting, and so that is why I took it upon myself to start college early: so that I could find something I could really be engaged in.

So now it’s incredibly exciting to be learning things about chemistry that I didn’t know before, to conceptualize the size of an atom as something that can be measured in centimeters (times ten to the negative eighth, of course), to think about the basic structural programming that makes up our universe and relate it to the world I see every day... I feel like I’m in second grade again, checking out chemistry books from the kids’ library and impressing teachers with my knowledge of quarks, and that is a good thing. Because, if we didn’t have quarks, we wouldn’t have anything.

Nobody tends to get why I love chemistry so much, so I’ll try to explain: The world around me is so full of data that I could spend a lifetime trying to understand it all and only get a tiny fraction of it in my brain. When the whole world confounds and confuses me to no end, I can take comfort in that no matter what, a neutralization reactions begins with an acid and a base and ends with water and a salt. No matter what, a carbon atom has six protons, and without carbon atoms life as we know it could not exist. No matter what, a proton has two up quarks and a down quark, and protons have to be balanced by electrons or they will go nuts trying to find one. Simple as that.

When I’m anxious or confused, I have a meditation where I try to focus on one imaginary point right in front of me, usually a star or a glowing orb. When my mind is racing and I’m trying to comprehend a thousand things at once, like if a certain boy likes me at the same time as did I do the laundry at the same time as how do I beat the Giant Egg Pants at the end of Level Bruce, I can get everybody to shut up and pay the bus driver by making myself think about one point in space and one point only.

So, when I’m trying to understand how humans could be so callous as to invent war, why the girl across the street doesn’t love me and why I just spilled spaghetti all over the floor, I can meditate my getting out my chemistry notebook and letting myself remember that, no matter how cruel or confusing the world may be, one plus one is two, there are three feet to a yard, and every atom wants to be a noble gas.

That’s why I like chemistry.

Leticia

(It also makes me imagine I have a dirty secret; all these confusing symbols don’t mean a thing to the average Joe, but to me, it’s the makeup of life as we know it. It’s like I’m looking at the Matrix code and being able to translate it as everything that exists. Sweet.)

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