When you’re working 10 hour days, at a new job – for which you interviewed extensively and brilliantly, leading your then-prospective employers to believe you are god’s gift to their professional lives – and you suffer with an irrational, seemingly ever-growing phobia of mice; creatures that are concurrently inhabiting your kitchen, leaving fecal evidence of their trespassing, you MAY enter a short phase of self-doubt and/or hate. Whether it lasts three days or three weeks, this emotion drags your confidence down to 100 year-old, mother of 7 breast levels, and thus the suffering seems dreadful and eternal.
But it’s OK. Somehow, I have not (yes, I was just using the third-person singular, and have suddenly switched to first, when I was indeed speaking about myself the entire time. I can do that, this is only a silly blog, you’re lucky I’m not misspelling shit all over the place) fucked up at work, and not only am still employed, but am rather well liked by said employers, who believe me to have powers similar to those of Super Woman. I don’t have her boobs and I certainly don’t possess a magic golden lasso… but I do possess other ASSets that enable me to stay afloat, and actually help me believe that I may, in the coming weeks, surprise myself and become all that I can be.
A huge presence in my daily doses of self-esteem recharging has been friends. I see mine on a weekly basis – Chillout Tuesdays (and sometimes Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays, and once in a blue moon, Mondays). The dogs join us, as do yummy paleolithic diet snacks with sides of pizza, DJ Leo’s uplifting mixes, and marijuana. She’s there, helping us relax, laugh, discuss ideas, tell stories, and draw inspiring pictures while competing in Pictionary.
I’m no artist to begin with, but under the influence of weed (a fantastic little plant that helps me let go of my self-imposed absolute concern with time and to also thoughtfully evaluate every aspect of a decision, thought, occurance with utmost care), getting Marx Brothers as a subject to draw in front of equally altered friends who must then decipher my modernist hyerogliphs, is like, a joke. I knew they were directors, but I also knew my teammates would have no fucking idea who these guys are, and as such, we were doomed to lose with me frantically etching crude stick figure-like representations of a crowd inside a movie theatre, that my two comrades would fail to interpret. What I did instead was start with a very clever idea; I decided to draw Karl Marx. I drew a round face with a double-helix-style head of hair and matching long beard, sticks for a body, and a prominent, large book sitting at the end of its straight-line arm. My frenzied pointing at the “Karl Marx” and “movie theatre” drawings ended when the last drop of sand finally reached the bottom of the plastic timer.
“It was the MARX BROTHERS!” I shouted.
“What. the. Fuck. Juliana!! Are you serious? The Marx Brothers? What the fuck is that,” asked my sore-losing teammate, pointing to my post-modernist, no. 2 pencil on recycled paper rendering of the father of communism. “You could’ve drawn BROTHERS, for starters. You can’t just draw something that looks like what you think this thing would look like if someone who knew what you were thinking were guessing it.”
At this point I was laying on the couch, hands covering my shamed face and hushing the sound of own my laughter at my pre-schooler illustrating strategies.
Whatever. What I lacked in drawing powers, I made up for in guessing abilities. “A thesaurus,” my friend called me. I don’t believe it true, but I enjoy having my ego inflated.
Pictionary is fun, as is the game Mafia. We play that a lot too, and I’m usually doctor or peon, never the killer. So it’s not always as fun as it could be. One of my fortes is, of course, telling stories. My friends are kind enough to let me hijack their ears for extensive high-decibel recreations (with occasional physical interpretation) of my true-stories. Like the time I had a bat in my apartment, or the the time I thought I’d lost my keys and had to spend the night at a friend’s house. I should tell you guys about these too. And maybe even share my story of being fondled by a teenage Cambodian and my thoughts on sex with Asians… I should share all of this.