I’m always bemused when I start out trying to write something from my past, because there is so little I can actually tell. And no, it’s not that my life was so horribly boring – it’s that I don’t want to incriminate the guilty or talk about top secret things, which means that there is an incredibly narrow range of things I can pick and choose from. I suspect that, once I have my British citizenship secured, I’ll be more comfortable about talking about some bits, but I figure it’s best to not risk it quite yet!
One also has to add in the fact that the bad tends to stick out the strongest, insomuch that the stronger emotions involved make it more memorable. That, I guess, goes for the good too, but I would argue that the negative emotions tend to scar more deeply; the death and destruction does its best to overshadow the births and creation. If I were to rely soley on my memory, which is as faulty as anyone else’s memory (hint – we all suck and rewrite our own pasts to suit us), I could say that my life has been a roller coaster of tragedy. And who knows – perhaps it has been compared to most people. I simply don’t know – I would love to walk a mile in someone elses’ shoes and understand intimately the views and experiences of others, but unless science figures out a reasonable way to brain swap… 😉
That isn’t to say that there hasn’t been good in my life – there’s probably been plenty. The problem, as intimated above, is that the first 25 years of my life were hidden in a haze of smoke and depression; the bits that stick out are so bizarre and/or illicit that it would be much safer to package it as fiction. Or the bits that stick out for other reasons are studded with bits that aren’t exactly wise to speak about publicly; I didn’t need the advent of Facebook to teach me to be cautious about what I make readily available openly!
I guess it pains me – I want to learn how to open up and share more of me, but… *shrugs helplessly* The bits I can and do share feel so stitled, so factoid, so… unreal. It’s as if I resent the need to keep mum, that my own controlling nature forces my own hand. So as it were, it means that I’m sitting here juggling fragments, trying to decide what is safe to say, what isn’t safe to say.
The nice thing is that I do have a section of my history that my mind is drifting over, and that’s high school; this comes compliments of my story for the The Chrysalis Experiment this week. I think of the meetings, the kookiness of going to an art school, and above all – my ‘adventures’ when I should have been in school.
It’s no big secret that I often skipped, though I don’t think many people realize that there was a method to my madness. *nods and grins* Firstly, you could only accumulate x absences per class in y period (4 unexcused a semester, I believe it was), so I would make sure to not exceed that. If possible, I’d skip on days that I had an excused absence, since my parents were already going to get a call about an absence, it was a ‘safer’ way to go about it. I’d also keep in mind what teachers were crap about taking attendance properly; there was one that would completely ignore the existence of any visual art students, or visual art-interested students, so I could skip the heck out of that incredibly waste of time class. So while I couldn’t tell you exactly how many times I skipped, I wouldn’t be surprised if it was comparable to my friends who didn’t play the system, and ended up getting stuck with community service to make up for their absences!
And what did I/we do do on these adventures? Some days, it would just be a day we’d deem too pretty to be in school, so we’d bugger off to a park. There’s nothing more glorious than enjoying a beautiful day on a swing, regardless of ones’ age. Other times, we’d go for coffee – Insomnia in Deep Ellum would be the choice with one group, while IHOP at Mockingbird & Abrams would be for other groups. Sometimes, we’d take advantage of being in beautiful downtown Dallas to just explore – nobody complained if you sat in the back of the Meyerson and listened in, and it hardly raised eyebrows to be wandering around the DMA. If we went to the Plaza, we’d always do our best to look confident and have a cover story (claiming to be students at El Centro, for example) on the off-chance any truancy officers ever stopped us; they never did. Whatever the adventure, it would always be Dr. Pepper and endless cigarettes, music and mayhem, and glorious escapism for the likes of overworked me. After all, we all need off time, and I wasn’t really getting any with full-time school and full-time work. 😉
And that, mes amis, is more than enough blather for a Friday. Have a lovely day/weekend/etc, and I’ll find more to blather about tomorrow!