An Interview. Alt Title: A long post my brother will not read unless there is a Cliff Notes Version

Carol asked me the following questions. Dixie had asked Carol her questions. If you would like me to ask you questions, leave me a comment to that effect or send me an e-mail. I’m gone all day today, but will get back to you with the questions tomorrow, fur shur, baby.

So here I go.

1.) What 5 things do you miss most about San Francisco and the Bay Area? (You know I HAD to ask that one!)

  • My family. I miss them like crazy. I can’t tell you how many times a day I wish my brother and I were hanging out, bullshitting. No one knows me better and there are some days I just want to be understood without having to preface everything. I miss having lunch with my dad. I miss the humor. I never laugh like I laugh with my family. Its soul deep. I’m a girl that needs to laugh. A Lot.
  • ocean-beach-francisco.jpgThe Ocean. Lived by it all my life. Spent summers in Laguna Beach growing up. I learned to swim before I could walk and there is nothing that gets me more excited than that moment when I step out of the car and smell the warm sand and the salty air, just knowing that in a few minutes, I’ll be in that water, riding those waves and getting sunburnt.

Granted, San Francisco beaches are not quite the same as the ones in southern California, but that salty air, the waves and the sheer power of the ocean calms my soul. Its cliché, but true.

  • And that leads to seafood. I love seafood. Try getting seafood in the middle of Germany. Im. Poss. Ible. Nothing like going to the wharf and picking up some cracked crab and eating it right there with the salty sour smell of the marina water, the honking of the sea lions and being amazed at this gorgeous city I call home.
  • And lastly the sky. In the Bay Area, its really high and an incredible blue. I know that sounds crazy, “the sky is the same height everywhere,” but no, it isn’t. The cloud layer here is very low. Clouds in SF are high, high, so high you could never reach them in a million years. And so fast you have point out the cloud shapes fast because they are on their way east, pronto.sf-sky.jpg

Here? Well, the clouds are not really high achievers. They mostly mope around. I feel a bit claustrophobic.

My GBF once told me that the San Francisco sky was a blue one couldn’t find anywhere else. He was right. It was the closest in Tuscany. I could live in Tuscany, I suppose.

2.) Given the choice of anyone in the world, who would you want as a dinner guest? As a close friend? As a lover? (Permission granted for this question…!)

  • Dinner Guest: My brother. I really miss him. And I wouldn’t have to entertain or worry that my dishes are chipped and I could totally relax. And I’d have the added bonus that he would sit with me while I cooked, watching to make sure I didn’t add any sort of laxative as I am wont to do when cooking for him.
  • Close friend: Tori Amos – Dude, I don’t want to even hear about it. I love her music and she is one of the few artists that I like more the more I know about her personally. She pulls from everywhere, be it art, religion, politics, panties, relationships. I’d love to have someone that well read and traveled in my group of friends. I would hope it would push me to do more, experience more, delve deeper into stuff rather than giving life a superficial wax over.
  • Lover: This is harder than it might sound. I have a top five list that I’m allowed to sleep with if it ever came up and try as I might, its really hard to hook up with either Robbie Williams or Angelina Jolie. Vin Diesel is not interested in girls and no matter how deep my voice can go, my tits and twat give me away. But in reality, that’s not what I’m looking for in a lover these days.

If I were going to look outside my current lover, I’d look for something similar. I’ve had enough sex to know I’m not interested in the one-night stand anymore. It would have to be someone honorable, capable, smart and of course dominant. And someone I could trust enough to let go with, to disconnect from all the crap in my head and in my day.

There is really only one person who fits this bill. David Palmer.

3.) Tell me about your most memorable dream.

I don’t have nice dreams, generally speaking. Sorry. This might be a little, well I don’t know. There aren’t any rainbows or unicorns.

I was walking up the stairs to an attic. The stairs were old and creaky. Lots of cobwebs and dirt. As I was walking up, rats were running down. I felt really uneasy, like I was in danger.

Once I got up to the actual attic, it was dim, but not dark. There were no windows and I couldn’t see a light source so that I could see was very odd. There was stuff all over the place, trunks and dolls and lampshades. Attic clutter that didn’t look out of place. What was odd, was a life-sized Jesus on the crucifix thing.

The Jesus was true to life except that there were deep holes where his eyes were supposed to be. Hollow, unfathomable depths of holes. For some reason I called him Baby Jesus in my head, even though he was the size of a large man. As I walked closer towards it, I noticed that his head was bleeding under his crown of thorns. Real blood trickling down his face.

I looked away for a second and out of the corner of my eye, I thought he, the Baby Jesus moved. So I looked back. It was at that moment that he flew off the cross with a growling scream to get me. And by get me, I mean consume me.

This is the most memorable because of the sheer terror I felt and the malice that emanated from the Baby Jesus. The thing is I’m not religious at all. This dream had nothing to do with religion. Its one of the only dreams I’ve had that I couldn’t quite figure out for myself, given when I had it and what was going on at the time. I can look back and say oh, it was probably this and this and that, but at the time, none of those things felt like they fit.

4.) If you could wake up tomorrow having gained one ability or quality, what would it be?

So barring superhero qualities (I’d like to fly) and bodily functions (I’d like to never have to pee again) I would love the ability to let go. Believe it or not, I’m something of a control freak combined with a need for perfection. If things/me/loved ones aren’t perfect, I push for more. Its exhausting, to me and everyone around me.

This is a multi-step process that requires sub-abilities. (Am I cheating?) I would like the ability to trust easily enough to not have to do everything myself which would lead to the ability to let others do things their way WITHOUT doing it my way AND it would be okay; the world wouldn’t explode and neither would my head.

I would like the ability to not care what people think about me or if I have so-and-so’s approval. This is my motivation for being perfect. I would like to have the confidence that I need to not be perfect and make sure everything else is perfect. The worst part is, I’m never good enough. I’m not one of those lucky people who succeed at everything they do. I’m the opposite. I have to work so hard to be mediocre that this quest for perfection is really insane. I end up beating myself up over what I could have should have done better. I would like the ability to turn off that voice in my head, let go and enjoy what I do have without the “but, it could be better”.

5.) Describe the most significant “fork in the road” of your life.

Oh. Well, I’ve had a couple. Most were around the same time. I guess I wasn’t listening to the universe or something, because I had a lot of crap happen between 21 and 25 when I finally got my life on the right track. My everyday Angel guy made the biggest impact as I’m still alive thanks to him. I guess the one that made the biggest difference to who and where I am now happened right after my “everyday angel ” experience.

I was working at a moving company. It was a shit job making nothing and working with shit people. Most movers are convicts. No joke. And it might start with small things like burglary and drugs, but I did not know one mover who hadn’t been convicted of at least one violent crime. By movers I mean the guys actually handling your furniture and packing your panties into boxes. And I worked in the office of one of these companies.

My boss smoked three packs a day, in the office. The coffee was more of a hint at liquid, but that’s the way it needed to be. The people in this office were lifers. They had worked in the Industry since they got jobs at 18 or 19. It’s a hard industry. Hard work, hard people. There was a guy who worked there, on the tucks, who had been in prison for 9 months for killing his mother-in-law with a broomstick.

I’m telling you, these were hard, hard people. I wasn’t.

There was woman who worked there with me. She was 45 and looked about 75. She smoked a pack a day. She had had an abusive husband whose fists removed many of her teeth. She had dropped out of high school and never learned to drive so the guys in the office would have to pick her up and take her home. Whatever life had handed her, she was not a nice person.

I was 23 or 24. I walked in one morning and sighed. The air was smoky and the coffee burnt and the movers stunk of body odor. I had to push past them, because they all crowded by the door waiting for paperwork. The day before I had been the subject of a wager – whether or not I wore underwear. It was great. I really enjoyed that. So pushing past these guys was a game for them and more than just “not something I wanted to do”.

I knew I didn’t want to be here in 20 years, but I didn’t think I was qualified or really, good enough, for anything else. The warehouseman asked me what was wrong. I told him I didn’t want to work in the moving industry all my life. He just laughed and laughed. He looked over at me and said, “Honey, you ain’t going anywhere. Once you’re in, you’re in. Look at Viola.”

And I did. I did not want to be that woman. I did not want to be who I was at that moment, sitting in a dirty dingy office in a warehouse giving paperwork to guys who would as soon hurt me as help me in other circumstances.

I looked at Viola, with her hard lined face and her dead eyes and listened to her cackle when Bob told her a joke, exposing her roomy gums. They were laughing at my idea that I could get out. They were laughing at me.

It was that moment that I decided I was going to get out no matter what. I don’t know what I looked like in real life, but in my head, my chin went up a couple of notches and my royal blood* took over and I just decided I was out.

The next day I spoke to my Step-mom. She told me what computer skills I would need and where I could take classes to learn them. She gave me a ton of help with my meager resume and advice about financial district interviews.

I took on a few odd jobs to pay for the classes. One was cleaning the bathrooms at my office and let me tell you, if there was nothing more to push me out of there, cleaning toilets used by truckers did it.

I finished my classes and made interviews at temp agencies. I got a temp job working for Bank of America that lead to a real job which lead to another job at the investment banc.

And the bonus to that story… I floss religiously. I never, ever want to be Viola.

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7 thoughts on “An Interview. Alt Title: A long post my brother will not read unless there is a Cliff Notes Version

  1. Your answers were fabulous, Jen!! Really revealing and honest and articulate. Thanks so much for answering my questions!

    Did you know that I frew up on Highway 24? The Tunnel Road part of it, right across the street from the Claremont.

    Carol

  2. LOVE Tori Amos. I swear she wrote ‘Crucify’ with me in mind. If not, it’s at least nice knowing I’m not the only one out there. And ‘Winter’ reminds me of my relationship with my grandfather, probably the only man I’ve ever loved unconditionally. My favorite might be ‘Northern Lad’ though, it helped me through a really complicated time in my life.

    Tori rocks.

  3. woah, i just read your everyday angel guy story and it totally made me tear up. what a story… oh and if you want to, go ahead and interview me 😉

  4. this is for Carol, actually…

    what is “frew up on…” ??? — is it, like, grew up, or closer to threw up?

    furthermore, Tunnel Rd. across from the Claremont is Hwy. 13, not 24. But be glad, 13 is a much better number in my book — for frewing (or is it frowing), at least.

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