foxtongue: (Default)
#10 - Wilson
"Why don't you just put some clippings together, get a press pass, get in legitimately?" He is obviously more straight laced than I am. I haven't sneaked into anything yet, that's for later tonight, after dinner, but even the idea of breaking the rules is making him nervous. I offer that I haven't kept track of my work. I try to spin it like it's an airy topic, as if there's no reason I would care, a faint mask of a ditzy girl, but he knows better, he presses, and so, uncharacteristically, I lay it all out. Everything. My project, what happened to it, how it failed, how it ended my life, how I've only just barely scraped by, that I bitterly swept my work away, deleted all of my writing in a harsh wind of regret and hate. This is the first time I've ever admitted what I did. He offers very little in the way of commentary, except to occasionally ask small questions, the better to clarify details, and allow me pauses to pick at my food. He is an exceptional listener. I am struck by his understanding, how immediately he grasps the heart of the thing. I think, "This is why he has me, absolutely completely. He is the rarest of creatures, one who not only looks, but sees."

"That must be impossibly hard," he says, "How do you survive?" "I don't," I reply, and he nods, "Of course." He looks at me as if I am a wonder, a myth. He says, "It is incredible that you can bear it, that you don't fall apart." Gently, he teases more from me, as if delicately pulling threads from a loom. I am Penelope, the faithful wife of Odysseus, unraveling at his feet, spilling everything across the table. He describes how he thinks it must be, mentions the word brittle, and it is so accurate I almost cry, but not quite. He keeps me balanced, he keeps me safe. It is amazing. "So this is part of the shadow underneath your skin."

When I am done my story, terrible in all its grand detail, he sits a moment, somber. "I understand why you stopped writing." A rush of heat, not quite anger, flushes up my throat, "I wouldn't have stopped unless I had a good reason." It tastes bitter. What sort of person does he think I am? But then he continues, "So. This is the point where if I were to answer as a woman, I would offer a similar story about my life, the better to offer empathy and make you feel less alone. Shared understanding, emotional community support." I laugh. "I don't think you have anything like that." "No," he says, "not really." He gestures, one hand, then the other, not quite smiling. "Or, if I were to answer as a man, this is where I would try to offer a solution, something constructive, to address and fix your problems. Make everything better." I am blinded by adoration. This is precisely the sort of reply I have always needed, but never been given. Just like that, I am relieved of my burden. He is sublime. "Which kind of answer would you prefer goes first?"
foxtongue: (Default)
Lifted verbatim from David:

How is everybody doing?

(Comments are screened; I won't post them unless you specifically say it's cool.)
foxtongue: (dream machine)
  • Extremely rare shark found, then eaten

    Been addicted to Omegle all day, the chat program which connects you to a completely random stranger. I just wished a gay Brazilian teenager good luck on his exams, after spending a quite significant chunk of my day in a rather gratifying discussion with a Swedish student named Phillip about med school, music, Italian earthquakes, and, finally, the current global economic downturn and what it's been going to Iceland. It's also freaking fantastic for surreal fun, so much so I'm going to start a file of my favourite saved conversations. Have you got any?

  • Extinct bird rediscovered, then eaten
  • foxtongue: (have to be kidding)

    Originally uploaded by Foxtongue.
    Fifteen after one in the morning, the phone rings.

    "Hallo. How are you?"
    "I just got in about ten minutes ago. How're you?"
    "I am drunk beyond my capacity for being drunk."
    "That sounds dreadful."
    "Why's that?"
    "You have work tomorrow morning."
    "That'll be fine. It's inconsequential."
    "Are you still staying the night?"
    "Am I welcome?"
    "Of course you are. How long will it take you to get here?"
    "Well, that depends on if I walk or if I drive."
    "Didn't you just say you were incredibly drunk?"
    "I believe it was the first thing I said."
    "Then you certainly shouldn't be driving. I vote you walk."
    "Well, I don't have a vehicle, so that rules out driving. My consolation is that I'm only about a half hour walk away. However, if I convince someone to drive me, I might only take ten minutes."
    "Ah, well, if it makes you feel better, it's only a fifteen minute walk, not half an hour."
    "Good to know. I'm still going to try to expedite matters though."
    "I'll stay up for you. Try not to wake my roommate with the bell, instead shout up to the window as quietly as you can."
    "Alright, I'll do that. See you soon."
    "See you soon."

    The phone is placed back in its cradle. Almost aloud, she says to herself, "that man is stupidly erudite for someone so blitzed."
    foxtongue: (purple)

    candy corn
    Originally uploaded by Foxtongue.
    Intelligent conversation is good for the release it brings. I am not a joyful girl, I don't know how to express myself. I have a careful library in my head collecting things I care about, but not in any particular detail. My education is practically non-existent. I'm a highschool drop-out without obviously marketable skills. I was never taught, like so many of you, another language or how to fix something or write something or how to do anything useful, but I can remember. You tell me something, I will keep it. You lend me a book, I will file the words away to dust off when the topic comes up. The input of another mind reminds me that I'm clever, that I can keep up and surpass. I need someone to prod me into illustrating the lack of time on the internet, while pointing out why it makes sense that it also moves faster than social light-speed, because otherwise, I'll forget that I can. I lapse into only remembering how disordered everything is, how little I've actually learned. I'm beginning to suspect it's a self defense mechanism. Something to do with being angry with the systems currently in place.

    Jenn told me today about a woman who's calling out for articles for her anthology on female geeks. I think it looks like it's going to be another Go-Grrl empowerment book for people who are old enough to remember being hassled in a computer workplace for being female. Me? I am not the target market. I'm too young. I've never struggled with living my gender. Jenn wants me to write for them because, she says, she wishes she could see the world more like I do, claiming they need post-feminists, people who've already moved past equality of gender to seeking equality of access to information, but I don't agree. The book looks like patting the past on the head, like people congratulating themselves on how politically correct they are for not hitting on the secretary without looking at her past fortitude from when they didn't "know better". Write about St. Jude overcoming prejudice, not people now who don't understand that to overcome sexism, they need to ignore the idea that they are doing is special because they are women. Sorry, womyn? w0m3n?

    The write-up claims that "More than anything, She's Such a Geek is a celebration and call to arms: it's a hopeful book which looks forward to a day when women will pilot spaceships, invent molecular motors, design the next ultra-tiny supercomputer, write epics, and run the government." ignoring that all these things already happen. I'm reminded of how I want to kick newsboxes when I see a front-page of our "news"paper congratulating a group of young people for being tolerant and pan-ethnic. Thanks, idiots, this is Canada, they didn't notice until you pointed it out.
    foxtongue: (Default)

    Originally uploaded by Foxtongue.
    I saw you and looked down. I changed the subject of conversation. You walked past like silver, as if I could touch the air you had just walked through and feel solid flesh.

    I counted my lovers the other day, using myself as one unit. My body, my bended bones and muscles, an abacus bead. Click, like this, and he slipped in here and my back arched taut, hips drawing the strings of shiva's bow. She bit me once, hard, at the bus-stop, one of the first times we kissed. I'm at twelve consensual, my friend at thirty-four. I thought about water falling, how many times I've held hands in rain. The contrast of skin colours, how I loved to see my white against the wood colours of tanned skin, how I loved the white of my skin matching the belly that I kissed. I would like to meet a boy this time who wants things I've never thought of, tells me the secret names of roses, tells me that he likes touching me in public. I would like to not be shot through with sacrifice.

    There's a girl sitting alone in a room, her music is as lonely as she is and she can't find anything else. Her clothes are piled on the floor among too many books and papers. She's scared.

    Newly minted life, that's another thing coming. Bill and I were talking about technology the other day after fireworks, and I felt for the first time in a long time that I was aware, like I'd been roughly shaken from a trance. He argued that new things weren't that, only the newest illustration of an age-old idea. I pointed out that new species only come from previous iterations of animal, that everything comes from somewhere. The system self-propagating. The New finding you because you've put the settings that way. I know enough for two of us. The trick is in the procedure, the knowing how to act with it, the finding out what to do next. I feel distinctly unintelligent because I have so many tools, so many pieces of information, yet no ideas.


    foxtongue: (Default)

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