Sunday, February 27, 2011


It’s warm.
The coworkers are supportive, and they connect with you in little ways, like singing your name or blowing on the back of your head as they’re passing. The servers speak candidly.
I get junk on my hands. Whatevs.

Today, Blondie and I had back to back shifts at the Bee. He was cut at 3:00, and he stuck around until 4:00, waiting for me to come on shift, so he could greet me. I really wanted him to linger at the bar, but he had to go to a barbecue at his uncle’s. “I’m not even going to take a shower. I’m just going to go like this.” He had food on his shirt. He reeked of the kitchen. Later, one of our coworkers told me, “Your husband is going straight to a barbecue at his uncle’s, and he's not taking a shower. I told him he needs to shower first.” I like how the people who know him know me.

I hear "Don't fight the Applebee's" when Jay-Z says, "Don’t bite the apple, Eve" in
"Empire State of Mind."

I sometimes hate being at work. I get sore in the legs. I agonize over a high school host's lack of communication skills.

But, whatever. All is well.

Blondie began working at the Bee in January 2010, and I started in August 2010. One night in August, when I had gotten the job but hadn't had my first shift, I expressed to Blondie my fear that it would depressing to work there (pointless), and he said something really inspiring. He described Applebee's, our store, as it's own world. It is one universe. We are always going back to that idea–the idea of our store as a world, where there are so many things happening, such a distinct order of operations. The Front of the House (host stand, bar, restaurant area) is one hemisphere. The Back of the House (kitchen, Powerhouse, where the real work is done) is the other hemisphere.

Wiles, sweating in the Back of the House. January 11, 2011.

"Yeah, I'm up at Brooklyn,
Now I'm down in Tribeca,
Right next to DeNiro, but
I’ll be hood forever,
I’m the new Sinatra,
and since I made it here,
I can make it anywhere."

Sunday, February 20, 2011


I was eating lunch at Panera with mi madre, and I saw a kid pass our table, marching after his mom, holding his drink out in front of himself like a flag. She told him to toss it, and he protested, “But, I’d be wasting this precious, um–” and then, I couldn’t hear anymore.
I liked that because recently I’ve been obsessed with not wasting.

I also liked that my bangs came out at work, and I looked like a crazed rooster. They had been clipped to my head, and they busted out when I was speeding back to the host stand. I didn’t realize they'd come out until a server walked up behind me and tried to smash them back down. A guest walked in, I welcomed him to the restaurant, and he said, “Your hair looks funny.”

I took a picture of the loco bangs. February 20, 2011.

She's open waiting for more
And I know he's only looking to score
And it is way too unhealthy
Often they've typically
Been starved for attention before

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

First Real Boyfriend

England, 2008.

My first boyfriend. I’m not saying it’s unusual or cute. I had a bf in first grade.
SO?! SO DOES EVERYONE! Well, whatever. There are specifics to every story. My boyfriend, André from Brazil, was accepting, and he had depth. He was disinterested in the fight for coolness, distant from worries about what others thought.

I don’t even remember if he really kissed my neck on the way back in from recess. Everyone saw it happen. Maybe they looked back, and he was lunging at me in play. Or maybe he really did mean to kiss my neck. Everyone’s rumors became the truth for me, and it was a happy truth. We were together. We played Power Rangers on the basketball courts every recess. He even played on Halloween when I was the only one in school who wore a costume. It was an elaborate homemade Simba costume–fuzzy, white chest and long draping tail with a white puff.

He moved back to Brazil in the middle of the school year, and we all had to write him a letter. I sat in the center of the class, writing my note on pink paper, drawing hearts.

Ten nine eight and I’m breaking away.
I’m all dressed up, and I’m ready to play.
Seven six five four, and I’m all over you.
Counting three two one and I’m having fun.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Will You Be My Water-Getter?

One common question for newly-weds is: “How is married life?” One thing I like about it is that Blondie and I have split the duties. The jobs he doesn’t want to do, I do. The jobs I don’t want to do, he does. I never really feel like getting up to get water, but I definitely like keeping receipts.

He is the Water-Getter. I am the Receipt-Keeper. Those are the first titles we’ve created, and we’ve been throwing them around a lot.

“Water-Getter, could you get me some water, please?” I say to Blondie when we’re talking in our room, and I’m thirsty.

“Here’s a receipt, Receipt-Keeper,” he says when he has a receipt that needs to be filed away by me, the Great Organized One.

Blondie said a little while ago, “Blog-Maker, make me a blog.”

September 19, 2010.
Does this look like someone you would entrust your receipts to?

When I was eight, I remember setting one qualification for my future husband: he must play the sax. I was a Jazz-Liker, and maybe I was thinking of the cool owl from Sesame Street who plays saxophone? I also wanted to marry the family dachshund, but...
Anyway, Blondie does play the saxophone. So, bam. I did it. I found a saxophonist. The eight-year-old’s dream: accomplished.

August 29, 2010.
Does this look like someone who would like to get you water?

Always there when you call, always on time
Gave you be mine
Always there when you call (call), always on time
Gave you

Sunday, February 6, 2011

The same town everywhere

I used to hear this saying a lot in Sunday school: “There is no spot where God is not.” I actually got sick of hearing it. I was like, “I get it!”

A recent thought from a dream: every place is blank & then filled by us. In the dream, I walked into a building in the purest part of town where all good things happen, and then, later, I entered a building in the regular part of town where nothing special is supposed to happen. Since the buildings were in different parts of town, they should have had different ranges of possibilities, but I felt the same way, entering both. They were both blank–the atoms, nothing. They were blank, so thought could fill them (they weren’t already filled). So, it doesn’t matter which part of town you’re in.

Entrance to the black box theatre. October 2009.

If you can hold on,
if you can hold on, hold on.
I wanna stand up, I wanna let go.
You know, you know–no you don't, you don't.
I wanna shine on in the hearts of men.
I wanna mean it from the back of
my broken hand.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011


I’m lying in my bed on my stomach, propped up by two pillows, and thinking about what to write. I want to write about how I’m mourning Sylli.

Isn’t that silly? We were going to name our dog “Sylli,” spelling it with the vowels switched up so the heavier one got to sit in the passenger’s seat. The word seemed to have better balance that way. “Sylli” would have been short for “Sylvester,” the name of a Prin dorm I like.

“Sylli” would have been short for “Sylvester” if we had gotten the dog. We’d given a down payment to the breeder a couple of weeks ago, but last night, we came to our final decision: that it would not be a good idea to get the bull dog right now. Today, we drove deep into the rural parts where the American bull dog mother stays in a lifted crate with her three pups. We gave back the receipt to the breeder, and he returned our down payment. Me and the blond guy whined like puppies all the way home.*****

When Blondie was in the shower last night, he heard an eerie noise: “Hoo hoooo. Hoo hoooo. Hoo hoooooo.” He thought it was an owl at first. “Maybe it’s Courtney crying,” he thought. It occurred to him that the sound could be coming from his nose. He tried to breathe through his nose to see if it would happen again. He recounted his thoughts to me later, “Wait–is that an owl, me, or her? It sounded like an owl in a distant tree in Steve’s yard, looking down at me, going ‘hoo hooooo.’”

It was me crying over the bull dog. I had fallen in love with the idea of that dog. Really, the dog would have been a long commitment. One of the days we visited it, I held it in my hands, and it was the most pure being. I dreamed of how pure it would be–this pure being–something to be really excited about. I just needed to cry to acknowledge fully that dream I had had.

***** “The blond guy and I!!!!!” Dad and my superego scream.

Sylvester Dorm. Winter 2010.

Looking for something crazy
Beautiful love.
Are you hungry for wonderful

'Cause I am, wonderful 'cause I am.
I wrote a song about your eyes

Ate a slice of cherry pie

I cried all night.