Wednesday, January 30, 2013


If I had a chance for another try
I wouldn't change a thing
It's made me all of who I am inside
                                      -Tom Delonge, "Rite of Spring"

It's better to regret something you have done than something you haven't.
No regrets
         -Cheeseball saying on shirts, mugs, hats, and other Bad Boy-type paraphernalia

The notion that people shouldn't feel sorry for anything they've done is prevalent in modern society, as is its sister idea, which is, of course, that people need to seize the day, to carpe diem, to grab the bull by the balls because, to quote the ubiquitous acronym of douche bags far and wide, yolo. In today's world, if you're not just doing it, something is wrong.

And that is so wrong.

Wrapped up in all that no-regret malarkey and seize-the-day stuff is really nothing but a whole lot of selfishness and built-in excuses for people to be irresponsible and do whatever the hell they want. Have a prior commitment but something way better comes along? You better cancel the first thing because hey, you only live once. Gotta do tons of homework and study for a test but there's something super fun going on that you really, really don't want to miss? It's silly to study when clearly you should be seizing the day. Fuck somebody over in a horrible way that's going to haunt that person for the remainder of his or her life? We all know that everybody makes mistakes, so let's just call it a learning experience; it's better than regretting not having done the horrible deed and regretting not having done it for the rest of your life.

Life, after all, is all about you.

Only it's not.

But let's just say it is. Let's say that life really is all about you. Let's say that life is all about you and that you've heard and read that it's better to regret something you do than something you didn't do so many times that you truly believe it. You look at your life, a life full of things-I-didn't-do regrets, and you decide you've met your things-I-didn't-do regrets quota. So you decide to do something. You decide to do something you know you shouldn't do, but goddammit, you want to do it, and you know, you just know, that if you don't do it, you'll regret it till the day that you die.

And then you do it.

And then you're fucked.

You're fucked because you did something you knew you shouldn't do in the first place, but you did it anyway. So, really, you're fucked because you're an asshole.


A few years ago, I reached my own personal things-I-didn't-do regrets quota, so I decided I was going to do something. I decided to do something I knew I shouldn't do, but goddammit, I wanted to do it, and I knew, I just knew, that if I didn't do it, I'd regret it till the day that I died. I also knew, because I'd read it and heard it seemingly everywhere I looked, that it would be better to regret something that I did do more than something I didn't.

And so I did it.

And so I was fucked.

But the thing was, as much as I was fucked--and believe me, I was damn good and fucked--I didn't regret it. I didn't regret it because it made me--me.

Could I have been any more of an asshole?


Years and years ago, I read a quote by Drew Barrymore similar to Tom Delonge's lyric from "Rite of Spring," and because I love her enough that Drew is Griffin's middle name, and apparently because I can't think for myself, I blindly adopted her perspective. For years, I professed the idea that every single thing I'd done made me the person I was and so every single thing I'd done was just fine and dandy because if I hadn't done them, I'd be someone else. I not only professed this idea, but I believed it, too.

Child, please.

What I now realize in my old age and infinite wisdom is that having no regrets is just putting an asshole spin on not taking responsibility for the things that we've done. Whether these ills encompass hurting others, hurting ourselves, or some combination of the two, saying, or believing, that no regrets are in order for our negative actions is immature and despicable, and if, in our hearts and minds, we truly have no regrets for the wrongs we've committed, we can never be all right, not as a world, not as a society, not as a people, and certainly, at least not for me, not as one's self.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Mama, We're Meant for the Flies?

A friend of mine died last week. Not a good enough friend for people to offer me condolences or anything, but a friend nevertheless.

(A friend, who, when I was separated from Glenn earlier this year, went out of her way to meet with me and listen to me and be nothing but nice.)

She was only 38--
the same age as me--
and from what I understand, she went to sleep and just--

Nothing was wrong with her, which of course can't be true; something was wrong. Because healthy, normal 38-year-olds don't go to sleep and just--

(do they?)

At first, I was too shocked to even feel upset unless you count complete and utter shock as upset. Maybe what I mean is I wasn't sad. I'm not cold (really. I mean, really); I just couldn't feel sadness. Any capacity for it was shocked right out of me.

Until tonight.

Tonight I looked at her Facebook page, read my mother some of the posts her sister left on her page, and cried. I cried for her mother and sister, both of whom unexpectedly lost a loved one, and I cried over the loss of a friend, but more than anything, I cried because one fewer person, one fewer good person who was never anything but nice to me, is here. And not only is one fewer good person here, but that one fewer person had no idea--no idea--none--she was going anywhere.

She was living her life as though she weren't going to go to sleep and just--

She was loving her dog. Traveling to Canada next month. Planning to move to another state (California?) with her mom. Obsessing over Chris Isaak. Taking pictures. Talking about her love for the Bryant Brothers. Posting statuses lamenting having slept through the Golden Globes.

She was living.
She was--

And then she went to sleep and just--

is gone.

Friday, January 18, 2013

You Say It's Your Birthday

Angelus: Now that's everything, huh? No weapons... No friends...No hope. Take all that away... and what's left?
Buffy: Me. 

          --Becoming, Part 2

After a particularly depressing New Year's Eve last year (Glenn and I had a fight, Griffin, Keifer, and I walked to Longhorn for dinner and ate without him, the three of us came back and watched whoever was standing in for Dick Clark, we saw the ball drop, and Glenn had no part of us), I decided significant life changes were necessary. I know it seems as if I'm heading toward making some kind of proclamation regarding my relationship with Glenn, but I'm not. The changes I decided to make had nothing to do with him. They had to do with me.

Although I was depressed over my alienation from Glenn that night, I was equally depressed that, other than spending the night with him (which I didn't do anyway), I had nothing to do. It was the supposed most party-filled night of the year, and nobody had asked me to do anything. And it wasn't the first year that had happened.

I realized that, discounting my kids, who had no choice but to hang out with me, I had no one.

I felt like the most pathetic person in the world.

A loser.


And it was a fairly new feeling.

Up until my mid-thirties, I always had a best friend who I was incredibly close to (as you know from reading this), and all significant days were spent with the best friend of the time period and a smattering of other people. A few years ago, though, the best friend thing kind of--all right, completely and utterly--dissipated, and I was left to my own devices. Over the past few years, invitations popped up here and there, but for various reasons--I was tired; I was on a diet and couldn't eat anything good and didn't want to be surrounded by food; I had to run in the morning and didn't want to drink; I was moody; I didn't want to leave Glenn; I was lazy, I was lazy, I was lazy--I mostly said no.

If you say no enough times, people eventually stop asking.

At least that's what happened to me (or at least I like to think that's what happened to me. Maybe I'm just a miserable bitch and nobody likes me. I certainly wouldn't rule it out).

Which brings me to:

Kelly's Year of Yes

Since I'd come to the conclusion that saying no was what ruined my life, I reasoned that by saying yes to every invitation that came my way, I'd eventually build up some social status again, and by the time the next New Year's Eve rolled around, my life would have changed completely. I decided that New Year's Eve (or maybe I decided the next day although for the sake of the story it sounds better to say that I decided then and there) that for the next year, I'd say yes whenever anybody asked me to do things.

But nobody asked me.

Which brings me to:

Kelly's Birthday Blues

I never thought about where my birthday cakes came from when I was growing up. Every January 17, a cake just appeared (just like they did every August 20 for my sister and October 9 for my dad). After I got married at 23, they kept showing up (of course by then I knew where they came from).

I also never really thought about who I was going to be with for my birthdays, either. I'd had the same people in my life for so long, I'd always taken the guest list on birthdays (and Christmases and Easters) completely for granted.

Well, let me tell you a little something about taking things for granted.

Your life might be moving along in a way you can only describe as swimmingly for oh-so-long, but before you know it--bam!--there you are, 38 years old and buying your own birthday cake.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

You Think My Story's Over but It's Ready to Begin

Okay, I know what I said:
I'm starting a new blog,
abandoning this one,
can't post freely without censorship,
whine, whine, whine,
blah blibbidy blah.

And it's true--partly, anyway. I did start a new blog, and I've written it--once. About this one. And so, that take-up-a new-blog business? I think--and I'm not sure (because really, I'm never really sure of anything), but I think--I'll keep it around for the purpose of writing things I can't write here, but despite my claim from a few weeks ago, I won't stop writing here.

You know it's hard for me to quit things.

       You know unless it has to do with my hair, I can't stand change.

              You know I'm a flake (as evidenced here).

Is my changed mind really a shock?

(Confession: One of the main reasons I'm keeping this blog is I can't figure out how to post a profile pic on my new one, and it's making me want to kill people.)

(Confession number two: Starting a new blog from nothing is entirely too daunting.)

(Confession number three: One of the reasons I want to keep my new blog is that it's so pretty, and I really like its name.)

(Confession number four: I'm really vain and like to be read, and the thought of losing all my readers and getting new ones is the pits.)

(Confession number five: I pee in the shower.)

(Confession number six: I sometimes share too much (see previous confession). But that you already know.)

(And a spoiler: One birthday blog, coming up.)