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Life On The Rocinante' (After Dark!)


Cynder
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Posted (edited)

Ok, so I'm going to talk more about what happened at work Thursday night/Friday morning.  Now I know I'm not getting fired so I have less anxiety about it. 

So, I will refer to my coworker as M.  And just for context, M is black.   So around midnight three teenage girls left the gym.  Shortly after that they called us and M took the call.  This was one of the girls and she told us that when they were getting into their car this white van pulled up to them in a place that wasn't even a parking spot and opened the side door and this guy in the van was acting creepy and talking to them like he wanted them to get in the van.  They said it was a big white van with no windows.  (So basically an obligatory serial killer van, lol.)  The whole front of the building is glass, so we could easily see the van they were talking about parked out there.  The lights were on and someone was sitting in it.  We decided to just hang out up front and keep an eye on it for the time being. 

Well, about 45 minutes go by.  The van is still sitting out there.  The lights are on and someone is sitting in it.  We decided it was probably a good idea to call the cops at this point.  Because they had been sitting there for a while and didn't come in.  Lots of customers were leaving, etc.  (We are surprisingly busy at that time of the night.)  We just figured it's best to make sure everyone is safe because what if they snatch someone out of our parking lot.  Then we are going to feel really awful for not calling sooner.  Idk... I'm really into true crime.  I'm a firm believer that if you see something, say something. 

So I went into one of the tanning rooms so I could hear better and have some privacy and I called the non emergency number for the cops.  I told the cops what was going on and they said they would send someone up there to check it out.  Well, when I came out M told me that in the time I was back there on the phone, the guy got out of the van and came inside.  She said he was drunk and came up to her and was basically hitting on her.  And by this point the cops were already informed and on their way.  He was in the men's locker room. 

So, cops show up, they take his license number.  And then the officer comes inside to talk to us.  It was this tiny little female officer.  I mean, she was like 5'2'' and 100 pounds.  And she asked us what he looked like.  Well M told her.  She asked if he was a member here.  We told her we didn't know because he didn't check in.  All members are supposed to check in, but some don't because they forget or whatever.  It happens.  We went through the recent check ins and no one had checked in for about 30 minutes.  So obviously he didn't check in.  So we had no way of knowing if he was even a member or if he just snuck in.  (that happens a lot too.) 

So this female officer was telling us it's a good thing we called because yes it's creepy that he's trying to get women to get in his van with him, etc.  She said she was going to call for a male officer because she was scared to go get this guy by herself.  So she did.  And a male officer showed up.  This male officer looked like he was not happy at all.  He just had this mean look on his face and was really unfriendly from the time he walked in the door. 

So they both walk back to the men's locker room to get this guy and find out what's going on.  Then a few minutes later the three of them come walking back up toward the front desk.  And they two cops are giving M and I dirty looks.  And this guy (who is black) is just going off on M and I.  He's calling me a stupid suburban white chick and telling me how ignorant I am and he's going off because I didn't check to see if any of the white people who came in here were members.  I didn't say anything.  I just stood there and let him go on and on because the cops were both looking at me like I did something wrong.  I figured anything I said was just going to add more fuel to the fire.  M was being quiet too. 

Then he turned around and started apologizing to the cops.  He's saying all this stuff like, "Oh I'm sorry this ignorant white chick wasted your time and made you come out here for nothing.  She didn't check to see if any of these white people were members or not.  A black man walks in here and she calls the cops.  That's just pure stupidity."  Then he turns around to me and says, "You gonna buy these two some coffee and donuts for wasting their time?  You really should be ashamed of yourself."  I was just dumbfounded.  I don't do well under that kind of pressure.  And these days one wrong word is cause for a lawsuit.  M was being dead quiet too. 

Then dude stands there and jokes around with the cops for a few minutes, tells them how he's in town promoting some show and there was nowhere in downtown Cleveland that was open 24 hours where he could take a shower.  And talking about how this is why he hates coming to the suburbs, etc.  Ok, we are a good hour from downtown Cleveland.  And he's supposed to be some concert promoter... so you would think wherever he's staying would have a shower.  So then the female officer tells us that if he's a member he has every right to be here.  We told her Ok.  Both the cops gave this dude a fist bump.  And they left. 

Well then he sticks around for hours harassing M and I. 

At one point we were both up front for a while arguing with him.  I got this whole conversation on video.  I was recording it.  Ohio is a one party consent state when it comes to recording.  And I was holding my phone down by my side so it wasn't obvious.  It was like talking in circles.  He keeps talking about how this is some bogus ass sh--.  He can't even take a shower without having the cops called on him because he's black.  And I kept telling him we had no idea what he looked like when we called.  We called because of suspicious activity in the parking lot and because we were getting complaints from customers.  He tried to say he just got there when we called the cops and M was like, "No you didn't.  We got the complaint at midnight and we called the cops at almost 1.  You were out there for a while."  He was making comments about how he has made this great life for himself as a concert promoter and he makes more money in a day than we make in a week.  We just think he's a lowlife because he's black.  M actually raised her voice at him at that point.  She was like, "Dude, don't you see what color I am?  I'm black too!"  He was telling me that I'm no better than the cops who killed George Floyd because I sent the cops back into the locker room to "put hands on" him.  I never did that.  I didn't say, "Hey he's back there, go put hands on him!" 

He asked if I was recording him and I said no.  And he's like, "Let me see your phone then."  I told him "I don't have to let you see my phone."  He was recording me, too.  It was really obvious. 

After arguing with him for so long I finally did cop an attitude.  I was like, "Ok. I told you when I called the cops I had no idea what you even looked like. I called because customers were complaining about you acting creepy in the parking lot.  I've explained that to you multiple times.  I'm not going to stand here all night arguing.  I have work to do."  Then M and I both went into the back tanning area to calm down for a few minutes.  And we came back out and kept on cleaning.  And he's sitting over in the corner of the lobby saying stuff like, "Oh so now you want to clean?  Now you got your fun for the night you want to clean?"  We ignored him. 

Then he starts trying to get my attention by saying, "Hey lady!  Hey Lady!"  I turned and asked him what he wanted but M was like, "You don't need to answer him, your name isn't Lady." 

He asked if we had anything to drink because he was thirsty.  (He was sitting right by the damn drink cooler.)  I told him "There's water right there in the cooler, help yourself."  He's like, "Is it free?"  I said, "For you it is.  I'll let you have a free water."  And hen he's like, "You're just gonna say I stole it 'cause I'm a black man."   

My blood was just boiling at this point. 

And way to go to the cops.  Nice police work.  They seemed to forget all about why I called them in the first place.  He was creeping on three girls in our parking lot.  What if he goes somewhere else and snatches someone up?  I don't care what color someone is.  Sitting in a van in a parking lot in the middle of the night creeping on teenage girls is not cool.  

M and I typed out a message and sent it to our boss.  The guy came in there yesterday morning and talked to him.  He told our boss that he's calling corporate, etc.  And the way things are these days, even though my boss said I'm safe, I am still worried because if he does call corporate it's easier for them to just fire me rather than deal with a lawsuit.  Even though race had nothing to do with it, the fact that I'm white automatically makes me the bad guy.  Idk if non emergency calls are recorded or not but if they are and this does materialize into something, there will be all the evidence they need.  Because I didn't say anything at all about his race when I called.  I just said there's a guy in a white van bothering our customers in the parking lot.  

So... that's what I had to deal with the other night at work.  Here in a few minutes I'm leaving to go to aerial Yoga.  That will release some tension. 

 

Edited by Cynder
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Man... I swear I left yoga class this morning and took a wrong turn straight into Hell, lol.  It's just been one of those epic bad days. 

My aerial class was amazing this morning.  I can see improvements every time I go.  There were things that I couldn't do the first time I took the class that I can do now, even if not perfectly graceful yet.  Every class I get a little bit closer to being able to go upside down and flip myself over.  Lifting my own body weight is the biggest challenge right now. 

But, the last 15 minutes of class or so, I started feeling really sick.  I mean... really nauseous.  By the end of class, just bending over to roll up my mat was really difficult because I was dry heaving a lot.  I decided I couldn't walk home.  When I get really nauseous like this, any movement could be the thing that puts it over the edge.  And I really don't want to be bend over puking on the sidewalk. 

So I went to the coffee shop next door and called a cab.  I was told the wait would be 30 minutes.  They have a lot of different tea there, and one thing they have is ginger tea for an upset stomach.  So I ordered that.  Well, I stood there for ten minutes waiting for it.  And I'm not exaggerating.  It was ten minutes because I got an email receipt.  And I could see when that receipt came through.  It took them ten minutes to hand me a cup of tea.  And there were people coming up ordering super complex things.  Like "Yea, I want a vanilla chai decaf latte with soy milk and two shakes of cinnamon."  And they were getting there orders before I was.  I was about tempted to be like, "Hey where are the teabags?  I'll come back there and get it myself."

So I sit down when I finally get my tea.  And this coffee shop has never played music before.  Today they had this weird music playing in there that sounded like elevator music.  And the sound quality was awful.  It was the same melody on repeat over and over and over.  And I know it seems crazy but it was actually making me feel sicker.  So I put my earbuds in and started listening to music.  Well, right after I did that, here comes this family with like 5 kids all under ten.  And then parents sit down and start enjoying their coffee, while the kids run around screaming and making all kinds of noise.  And the one kid kept doing this really high pitched shriek.  I'm just sitting there thinking, it's alright... I only have to deal with this for a short time.  My ride will be here soon. 

Well, I ended up just shutting the music off and taking my buds out because these kids got so loud that it was futile to even have music on.  And I ended up waiting almost 2 hours on my ride.  I called after an hour just to make sure they didn't forget me, because they do that a lot.  And I was told, "They're right around the corner.  They should be there in like two minutes."  Ok cool.  Well she lied.  I hate when the taxi dispatchers lie.  They do that just to keep customers from getting irritated.  But it's way more irritating to be told 2 minutes and then sit there for another hour.  When they finally did get there the driver told me she sent him to a completely different place all the way on the other side of town.  I guess she told him "She's at some coffee shop.  I think it's *other coffee shop on the other end of town.*  Ok... haven't you ever heard of writing stuff down lady? 

So I get back home, feeling sick af.  And I take two steps inside my house and immediately step in a nice fresh disgusting puddle of cat puke.  So I'm sitting here drinking my 7Up and getting ready to go back to bed for a few hours.  I usually do this on Saturdays just to keep in line with the 3rd shift sleep schedule.  I get up early and go to Aerial class in the morning and then come back home and go back to sleep for a while.  So I guess that's the good news.  I get to just go back to sleep.  Yay for that. 

 

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When I was a freshman in high school I had this one friend who went to see The Rocky Horror Picture Show in theaters with a live cast on a regular basis.  She went with her two older brothers.  She invited me to go with them a couple times but I knew there was no way I would be allowed, so I didn't even bother asking. 

But since she was always talking about how much fun they had, it made me curious about the movie itself.  And the summer between my freshman and sophomore year in high school I remember it was on TV.  We had two TVs in our house.  The upstairs TV was where everyone watched TV.  The downstairs TV in the family room was where I watched TV a lot because I didn't always want to watch what they were watching.  So I asked my Mom if I could watch Rocky Horror when it was on.  She made it into this whole big thing.  Looking back I could have probably just went downstairs and watched it and not said anything and avoided all the drama. 

It was a couple nights before it was on that I asked her and she just flew off the handle about how messed up it is that I want to watch a movie about a bunch of gay people.  But she didn't say gay people.  She used a homophobic slur that starts with F.  And she talked to my dad about it and I couldn't even believe how big a deal they were making about me asking permission to watch freakin' Rocky Horror.  It's so tame.  It was only controversial back when it came out because gay characters, drag queens, etc weren't shown in movies hardly ever. 

She was asking me questions like, "So is that what you're into now?  Do I need to talk to your counselor about this?  Are you hiding something from us?  What kind of things are you saying to your brothers and sisters when we're not around?"  I was so confused.  I had no idea what she was even talking about.  Like is she accusing me of being gay?  And it got really bad when I heard her and my dad talking down in the family room when I was washing the dishes.  Our house was laid out so it was really easy to hear what was going on in that room from the kitchen.  Her and my dad are sitting down there talking and she's telling my Dad that she's just worried about what I might do to my siblings if I'm alone with them because I'm wanting to watch this disgusting movie.  Jesus...  all I could think was that she was insinuating that I'm going to molest my siblings.  This also kind of reminds me of the couple times she was absolutely outraged over minor things and accused me of being a "devil worshiper."  And the time she claimed I attacked my brother with a baseball bat (never happened.)  It's like the most extreme conclusion possible is always right where she jumped to. 

But in the end she actually did let me watch the movie.  This was probably so she could throw it in my face later, honestly.  And I only watched the first half hour because I just was having so much anxiety about it.  I just couldn't stop thinking there are going to be some really bad consequences if I actually watch this whole movie.  So I turned it off and went upstairs.  She asked me why I didn't finish it and I told her because it was boring. 

I know it's odd to say but in some many respects I feel like I raised myself.  Because there wasn't really any guidance ever given to me by my parents.  Yelling and screaming at your kid just for existing isn't teaching them anything.  Telling them they are never going to get anywhere in life because they suck at everything isn't teaching them anything.  Someone on Reddit told me earlier today that the latest short story I posted has a really professional quality to it and that I should consider going pro as an author.  My parents were just so insistent that I was completely talentless and that all my writing sucks. 

I know that if I would have taken up this Aerial stuff when I was younger and still living at home I would have been bullied relentlessly for it.  When I was a teenager and started running on a regular basis, I got made fun of.  I was interested in learning martial arts when I was a teenager.  I got bullied for that. 

I think a lot of this was because my Mom has no interests of her own.  She never really has.  She isn't into movies.  She doesn't read books.  She's not into music.  She has no hobbies.  My sister and my youngest brother are both the same way.  Idk, maybe on some level they envied me for actually being passionate about things.  My oldest brother is also really creative like me.  But he didn't start openly showing interest in anything until; after he moved out.  Probably because he knew better. 

Idk it was like they expected me to just go to school, come home and do chores, then do my homework, and then just sit there until it was time to go to bed.  They would always be watching TV after dinner and stuff and if I was doing something other than watching TV it was because I just don't want to spend time with the family.  This was actually a big one for my dad.  He loved talking about how I don't want to give them the time of day.  He also had a serious problem with me not wanting to be outside all the time.  If was weird...  if I was sitting inside drawing or whatever he would start complaining about how I never go outside. 

Idk where I'm ever going with all of this.  Sometimes it just feels good to sit down and write about this stuff. 

 

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Idk why, but I just want to write about this...  the friend I talked about in my last post show would go to Rocky Horror  at the movie theater with her two older brothers...  She was one of my best friends in High School and we are still friends.  She is terminally ill now, unfortunately. 

Her two older brothers were cool, too.  The oldest one was named Mike.  He was really good looking.  He had long blond hair and blue eyes.  The younger one, Rick, was ginger and short and kinda stocky.  Well at one point my Dad heard me say that I thought my friend's brother was cute.  It was Mike that I was talking about.  Not that I thought Rick was ugly or anything.  I just made a comment about Mike being cute. 

Well one night I was at the store with my Dad and I ran into my friend (who's name is Angela) and Rick. 

Well, my Dad just wouldn't stop ranting on the way home about how ugly Rick is and why the hell did I think he was cute?  I tried telling him it was her other brother I was talking about.  But that was futile.  My Dad just only heard what he wanted to hear and what fit his agenda.  And from then on, if I ever mentioned anything about Angela or her family or whatever my Dad would start going off about how ugly her brother is and how messed up it is that I think he's cute.  He even commented a couple times that maybe I should go marry her brother so we can have a bunch of ugly babies together.  And of course he had to add "Don't expect me to claim them as my grandkids." 

Seriously, I don't know what his deal was.  But I've never known anyone who got so offended by ugliness.  Our next door neighbors had three daughters. He used to talk about how ugly all three of them were and how they are going to grow up to be fat nasty hogs just like their Mom.  And their Mom wasn't even overweight. 

Different subject...  I have actually been wanting to tell the story here about my Mom telling everyone I attacked my brother with a baseball bat.  That is still something that makes me mad looking back on it.  Because what she told everyone is not at all what happened. 

It was a really nice day out.  We were all outside in the afternoon.  I was sitting at the picnic table with a sketchbook drawing.  I was like 11 at the time.  My Dad started b*tching at me to get up and play.  Why do I always have to sit on my ass and draw.  Why can't I play like normal kids do? 

Well, we had this wiffle ball toy that would throw the ball up so you could hit it.  It was cone shaped and there was a foot peddle that you hit.  And the call would come flying up so you could swing at it.  So I went out in the yard with that thing and decided I was going to hit the wiffle ball.  For anyone who doesn't know, a wiffle ball is plastic with wholes in it.  And the bats are plastic too.  The bat was blue and it was really lightweight.  Well, I was out there hitting the wiffle ball for a little bit and then one time when I went to swing at it I didn't see that my brother came walking up beside me and when I swung at the ball I hit him in the side of the face. 

Anyone who saw this happen would have seen it was an accident.  But of course, my parents had to make it this big thing.  I hit him on purpose because why else would I have hit him?  They tried to say it was because I was mad at my Dad for making me get up and play so I went after my brother with a bat.  My brother was not hurt.  But they were trying to say I didn't even care whether or not I hurt him.  This story got told to my whole extended family.  But my Dad told everyone I was chasing my brother around the yard trying to hit him with the bat.  Um... no that's not what happened AT ALL. 

And a few weeks later it was the exact same situation only this time it was my sister who was swinging at the wiffle ball and she hit him.  They yelled at him for standing too close to her when she swung the damn bat. 

I was in counseling before that but I actually got pulled out of counseling and that incident was one of the reasons.  I was told by my parents that I was so messed up the counselor couldn't do anything for me.  But I know that's not the truth because I overheard my Mom on the phone with my aunt talking about it.  The walls were thin in my house and I heard a lot of things I wasn't supposed to hear.  But my Mom was telling my aunt that my counselor was starting to question their parenting and think that I didn't have as many problems as they say I did.  And I guess he didn't believe her when she told him I attacked my brother with a bat. 

That whole time of my life was so messed up.  My preteen years really were interesting.  I was in and out of counseling for my "attitude."  My parents were always talking about how I have to change my attitude.  It was always, "You and your damn attitude."  When I started counseling I asked them why I had to go and they said it was to fix my attitude.  I actually didn't mind going to counseling at all though because for once someone listened to my side of things.  When I stopped going to counseling my parents made this big thing about how I'm so screwed up the counselor couldn't help me.  When in reality it was just because of their sh*tty parenting.  

My dad's friend owned a Body shop that was a few blocks away from my grand,ma's place.  And I remember once my Dad and I took a walk to see his friend at the body shop.  And when we were walking I asked him what do I do that makes my attitude so bad?  Because I really wanted a concrete explanation.  And he said it's because I'm self centered.  I asked him what that means.  And he said "When people are talking about something you always want to say how you feel about it."  And then he also said something about how when we eat dinner I always want to tell them about stuff that happened that day at school.  So, because I want to tell my parents about stuff that happened at school, and because when a bunch of people are talking about something I say my opinion about said thing, that means I'm self centered and that's why I have a bad attitude?  Idk... that all seems pretty normal to me. 

When I was 12 my sister and I were playing truth or Dare with three other girls from the neighborhood.  My sister picked truth and someone asked her what her deepest darkest secret is.  And she said she was gay.  I think it's really cool that my sister knew she was gay even at 9.  And she started talking about how other girls say boys are cute and stuff.  But she doesn't think boys are cute.  She thinks girls are cute.  The whole thing was just so wholesome, looking back now.  And no one teased her.  No one made her feel bad about it, nothing.  But now she insists that as soon as she told, I got up and started running around the whole neighborhood yelling to everyone that she is gay.  That did not happen.  She still talks about how I went around telling everyone at school and everything.  Nope, never.  For one thing, her and I went to two different schools at the time.  I was in middle school and she was still in elementary school.  What reason would I even have to go around telling everyone at school that she's gay? 

One time at a family gathering, pretty sure it was the 4th of July at my Grandma's house, my uncle and my Dad and my grandpa were asking my brother to say a bunch of words.  He was like 4 at the time.  They were having him say big words like hippopotamus, encyclopedia, etc.  And he was saying them all.  But then they started asking him to say small words.  They had him say boy, which he said.  But then my uncle asked him to say girl and he said grill.  Well then my Dad and my uncle teased him about it.  The whole family saw this happen.  Everyone was listening.  Well, for years after that my brother would not say the world girl at all.  He would say other words in place of the word girl.  (And my brother had his own little language when he was younger too, which I always thought was really cool.)  But my Mom blamed me for that for so long.  She would talk about how he won't say girl because I was such a little jerk to him at Grandma's and teased him in front of everyone about it.  I always told her that was Dad and Uncle Richard teasing him, not me.  But then I was always told to stop lying. 

I always became the villain in every situation, even when there were a dozen or so witnesses. 

I know I write about this stuff here a lot.  But this is what I do to get it out.  The only person I've ever met who could really relate to all of this was Z.  Her family was the same way with her when she was growing up. 

There were times, though, when my parents were awesome.  One of these days I need to write about that.  They had some great qualities.  Unfortunately the bad things far outweigh all that though. 

 

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It amazes me how many prank/obscene phonecalls we get late at night.  I just got two in a row... some androgynous voice moaning into the phone and saying things.  

And on top of tthat I'm pretty sure there were two cam girls recording shows in the locker room earlier.  

Never a dull moment.  

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"You're not talking to them, you're talking to a chemical version of them."  God quote I saw about long term alcoholism.  I don't know exactly how long it's been since I had any alcohol but the fact that I don't miss it is something I feel really proud of.  I didn't have a problem.  But I did enjoy it.  I always made sure there was some in the house just in case I wanted it.  Now I don't even buy it though and I've never felt the urge to leave and go get some just because.  I'm so glad I gave up smoking and I'm so glad I don't drink anymore.  It just lowers my vibration.  There is no place for alcohol in my life right now. 

Z is slowly pickling her brain.  Wet brain syndrome is a real thing.  Seeing what she's doing to herself and what L is doing to herself were the main reasons I just decided I want no part of that.  It's odd that it took that and not seeing my Dad, my step dad and my uncle all drink themselves to death. 

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

So as of now, everything I can do for Hell City is done.  Everything is as packed as it can be.  I say that because there is no car to load yet. 

The overhead is insane for this show.  I'm already in for almost 2 grand as we speak.  Between the cost of the hotel, gas, food, inventory, booth fee...  And that isn't even counting the lost wages from work, too.  Paid vacation isn't a luxury I have anymore.  Man if I don't make some serious money I'm kinda screwed.  I take that risk every time I do a show, though.  It's just the size of the risk that matters.  Shows that have a high overhead usually have the highest profit, too.  You really do have to spend it to make it.  I'm working this show alone, also because I can't afford to pay employees.  My brother is driving down there and helping me set up and tear down because he's awesome.  I am covering his gas and food for the day.  And then hopefully when it's all said and done and I make about 5 grand this weekend I can take him out for a big steak dinner. 

It's probably a good thing I'm working alone for another reason...  If I had employees covering the booth I would really be tempted to go get tattooed.  And I can't afford that right now. 

I remember when my ex Aaron and I went to Hell City years ago.  He was getting the bottom half of his leg tattooed.  It was going to be about a 8 hour tattoo.  And I remember the night before he say in my bathtub with his leg up on the lip of the tub and I shaved his leg.  He said having me do it the night before would probably save some time.  I covered his leg in shaving cream from the knee down and shaved it.  I remember he kept giggling because it tickled.  He was saying maybe I should do the other won too so it would match, lol. 

All this planning and stuff is making me think of my ex a lot.  We had so much fun in Indianapolis when we went to that one show out there.  That was actually the last time I was drunk. 

And speaking of that, I'm drinking a glass of wine right now.  I never said I was committing to be a teetotaler for life.  People might read this and think I fell off the wagon.  But I was never up on the wagon to begin with.  I am taking a bottle down there with me, too.  I love wine, I love whiskey and I love good beer.  And drinking is a lot better when it's a once in a while thing.  This glass of wine is hitting harder than it normally wood because I haven't had any wine for a while.  Whiskey was what I really wanted, but I don't have any in the house.  I had a bottle of wine hiding in the back of the fridge that had one glass left in it. 

It will be nice to see some of my vendor family again, now that I am in better spirits.  The last time I saw a lot of these same people was at Pride two weeks after Z left. 

Three weeks from now is FF.  So I need to start prepping for that when I get back. 

My hair has been touched up... purple with green chunks. 

I am just so stressed out.  I just hope all this effort is worth it. 

This song...  lol.  There have been times when I've been really depressed when all the true crime stuff I consume gets to me for a weird reason.  The way they talk about the victims.  "She was so beautiful!  She lit up a room!"  "He was so compassionate."  "He was so funny and made everyone laugh!"  Sometimes (especially over the last 9 months) when I am really down I hear stuff like that and I am so envious.  Like, I wish people would talk about me like that and I think the only way it will ever happen is if I get murdered. 

It's also interesting that when it's a woman the things they say are usually about her looks.  And when it's a man they say things about his personality... (unless he was stupid gorgeous like Jason Momoa or something.)  Unless a guy was really hot they almost never mention that.  It's always stuff about his character or personality.  

I have actually wondered what people would say about me if I was killed and there was a crime documentary about it.  Most likely it would be "She was a really good artist.  She was a Goth chick and she owned all black clothes.  She had a lot of tattoos and always had crazy hair."  That seems to be what people associate with me.  Not saying it's a bad thing.  I've made myself into that.  I was told all the time how ugly I am growing up, so I decided if I'm not going to be pretty, I'm going to be unique looking.  So what people would say about my looks doesn't bother me.  That's how I want to look.  It does bother me a little though that I am only seen as an artist.  I mean, yes, that's what I am.  But I remember when I was suicidal, and when in the times when I wasn't necessarily suicidal but hoping for things like car accidents, etc...  The people I opened upt o about that always said "Well I would miss your art so much."  "The world needs artists."  I mean... it's great that they like my work.  But it also kinda sucks that that's all they would miss/that's all the world needs from me. 

Idk... it's kind of a weird thing to explain.  During my NDE I remember having all these questions answered in rapid succession.  It wasn't like I asked this question and then some disembodied force answered it.  It was more like just knowing/remembering the answers to everything I ever wondered about in my life... all at once.  But I also knew I wouldn't be able to take all this knowledge back with me... if I went back.  It's not like I was thinking, "Oh look... I'm dead.  I'm out of my body now."  I didn't even understand that I had a body to be out of and "dead" was a concept I didn't understand. 

But during that "dead" time... it was so clear to me that my purpose here in this life is to be an artist.  We are all sent here on a mission and that is my mission.  So... the fact that that's the thing people would miss means I'm living my purpose, if nothing else.  But it also is sad... because that's the only thing people would miss.

Another hard thing to explain... losing all comprehension of language.  Imagine being a baby and having no idea what words are and having no inner monologue in your language.  All your thoughts are abstracts.  I know what that's like too because that's how this was.  There was no inner monologue and no language governing anything.  Language is such a limiting thing.  We need it but we don't really think about how limiting it is until we lose it.  

And I am fortunate enough to know two other people pretty well who have had NDEs.  One was my long time friend, on again off again lover for years and sometimes tattoo artist, B.  He almost died in 2011... he was in a coma, flatlined on the operating table also.   

The other one was Z.  Motorcycle accident.  I haven't written a lot about her accident here because it's just hard to write about.  

One night her and I were talking about how strange it is being outside of your body and looking down at yourself.  It's really an experience seeing yourself in 3D.  Most people never do.  You only see yourself in a mirror, which is flat.  Seeing yourself in 3D is crazy.  I remember being on the ceiling looking down at myself and giving myself permission to "go."

Most people don't realize how traumatic being born is.  people who say they have no trauma in their past are incorrect.  Everyone alive is traumatized to some degree because birth is traumatic.  Being born is the most terrifying thing most people go through.  I remembered it during my NDE.  And I've heard other NDE survivors say they remembered there's also.  All you know is this warm, comfortable, dark, quiet place.  And then all of a sudden it's cold, and there are  bright lights, and it's so loud, and you're in pain... and all you can do is scream, and there's these huge scary creatures handling you, and you have no idea what's happening.  Birth is terrifying. 

Wow... so what started out as this little blurb about true crime, inspired by the song People Who Died really turned into something.  I guess this was one way to remedy the Hell City stress.  Thinking about my NDE is something that' kind of a go-to when I'm really at my limit.  It's a reminder that there is so much more to everything than this stupid human existence.  We are so insignificant as humans.  We are specks of dust in a huge Universe.  

So I started writing all this because of a song about death... and when I finished it... another song about Death is playing.  My glass is empty... think I'm going to go binge watch some trashy reality TV and turn off my brain until tomorrow. 

 

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These are some things vendors hate... I'm just working my nerves a little beforehand. 

Don't come up to my booth and try to pay for something you grabbed from 7 booths away.  We are not all one big conglomerate working together. 

"I know other artists who would charge less."  That's great.  I know other customers who would pay more. 

"I can't afford to buy one of your $10 prints so can I take a picture of it?  I'll just print it out at wal mart and hang it up then."  Do you do your job for free?  No?  Oh well neither do I.  Who the hell comes to a festival and can't spend $10?  How did you afford the tickets?  You have a $12 Bud Light in your hand ffs. 

"Oh if I buy this you have to throw this other thing in for free."  I don't have to do anything. 

"Can you just not charge me sales tax?"  I could do that.  But I still have to pay it at the end of the year.  So why should I do special favors for you? 

"It must be nice to not have a real job."  Smh...

*Some man* "How much is that painting? Oh really?" *Turns to male employee* "Is that really how much it is?  Can we make a deal?"

"You mean you actually have to pay to be here?" 

"My niece is an artist too."  Whips out phone to show me while there are 15 other customers needing help.

"So where's the artist?" "Who did all these paintings?"  f I have a male employee:  "Your husband does such beautiful work!"  If I have my older female employee with me, "Your mother does such beautiful work!"  If I have one of my attractive female employees with me... they don't even bother speaking to me, they just go right up to her and say, "Wow, you do beautiful work!" 

I actually called someone out about that last year at Pride.  It was 2 weeks after Z left.  I was emotionally wrecked.  I had barely eaten in weeks.  I was throwing up all day.  Not excuses.  But my resolve just wasn't what it usually is.  And after the 5th time that happened I just kinda snapped at this guy.  After he told L how talented she is and how beautiful her work was I just looked him dead in the eyes and said, "It's my work." He was all confused and was like, "Oh really?  I just assumed it was her who did the paintings."  And I said, "Yea, I know it's hard to believe an ugly b*tch can actually have talent and do nice work isn't it?"  I know I lost a customer... but in reality he wasn't going to buy anything anyway.  He was just trying to get in her pants.  It was so satisfying after years of everyone assuming I'm just the helper and other people are the artist. 

"Is that paint by number?" 

"Do you paint these freehand?"  Nope, I do them with my hands tied behind my back.  Pretty impressive huh? 

Then there are the people who just whip out their phones, or sometimes big ass SLR cameras, and start photographing every single painting without even asking.  People do that crap and make money off other people's work on sites like RedBubble and Displate.  I've actually seen my work for sale by someone else.  I had to go through some avenues to get it taken down.  I have "No Photography" signs, but people ignore them. 

My cup, my water bottle, my clothes, my log book, my signage, etc, is not for sale.  I have this gothic leather bound journal that I use as a log book.  So many times people have reached across the table to pick it up and say, "How much is this?"  Even when I have a pen inside it and it's obviously in use.  Same thing with the cup I drink tea from.  People will reach right over and pick it up... with tea in it, and ask me how much?  Um... put my damn cup down!  Some guy spilled it all down his front once because he picked it up and turned it upside down. 

I have a sign that took me about 5 minutes to whip up in Photoshop.  It has a pic of David Bowie as the Goblin King from Labyrinth and it says, "Unattended Children Will Be Given to the Goblin King."  So many people have wanted to buy that sign, lol. 

I also get people who want to start preaching about copyright infringement. I have done a lot of music related art over the years.  Also pop culture stuff.  I've had people tell me I could get in "so much trouble" for that.  Um... I'm not that important.  Pink Floyd isn't going to come after me because I painted my own version of the flower sex image from The Wall.  George Lucas isn't going to come after me because I painted a psychedelic Yoda.  If I was making millions off these images then yea, probably.  But no one is going to waste their time going after some festival vendor over a single image.  Fan art is a thing.   I've taken a lot of things from pop culture and painted them in my style.  My style is really trippy and colorful. I did a trippy version of Pennywise that people went nuts over.  It's one of my best selling prints. 

I was up straightening things out once and some drunk dude just came walking into the booth and sat in my chair.  The chair was in the back corner of the booth behind a table.  My long book and my cup were sitting right next to it on a small end table and my jacket was hanging on the back of the chair.  He just sat down and started hitting on my employee.  And while he was sitting there he picked up my cup and was acting like he was going to drink from it.  Like dude... gtfo.  And don't even think about putting your nasty drunk mouth on my cup!  He was hammered though.  He probably didn't even know he was at a music festival. 

I haven't had anyone puke in my booth... yet.  Hopefully that's one I never have to deal with.  I've had dogs pee in my booth though.  And I've had people spill beer all over the table... and on me once. 

And now for some of the really stupid questions I get...

"What do you do with it?"  Um... it's a painting.  You hang it on the wall.  "But why?" 

This is the one that absolutely takes the cake though...  I don't think I've ever encountered this level of stupid anywhere else in my life.  The sun was shining on the one side of my booth.  And this lady and her husband are in the booth.  And shes like, "So why is the sun shining on all those paintings over there but not the ones over here?"  Because the sun is going down and that's just where it's shining at the moment.  "So if I buy one of those paintings hanging over there I will have to hang it in the sun then, right?" Well, yo could hang it wherever you want.  "Yea but the sun has to be shining on it, though."  Well not really.  "Yea, but the sun is shining on them now."  Well, rotation of the Earth and stuff...  Her husband was just dumbfounded.  My two employees were snickering discreetly.   She was standing there telling her husband how much she loves this one painting, but there's nowhere in the house where the sun will shine on it all the time.  You can't make this up... 

I use true color LEDs to light my paintings also.  And a lot of people make comments about them being under a blacklight.  They aren't.  I get people who are like, "Well if I buy it I will have to shine a blacklight on it for it to look like that."  People just aren't used to seeing things properly lit.  And actually some of my paintings are blacklight responsive.  I work with UV paint occasionally.  

Anyways...  now I need to go get ready to leave, check into the hotel, load in, set up, etc. 

 

Edited by Cynder
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Crap... I've been down here gathering stuff up with music on pretty loud because I assumed L was at work.  She's not.  I'm sure now a bunch of people she knows and whatever guy she's currently screwing are going to hear all about how mean and inconsiderate I am for being loud when she's all hungover.  She was out late drinking last night.  I didn't know she called off work.  She's been doing that a lot lately.  Oh well... her life, her alcoholism, her job... Not my problem. 

She is supposed to pay rent today though.  Shes been saying "next Thursday" for three weeks now.  Today is next next Thursday. 

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Good Gods, today has been a day.  Been Up since 5AM. When I got here the vendor check in line was Massive, it was about an hour wait.  Technically early setup was supposed to be from 5 to 8.  But no one was really enforcing that.  By the time I got checked and loaded in it was almost 8.  But I just stayed there and set up my whole booth.  It looks amazing.  My booth looks a little different every time I set up.  I never do the exact same setup twice.  There are certain aspects of it that are similar, but it's never Identical.  And that's something that people have told me keeps them coming back. I mean, I've had multiple customers tell me over the years that they look forward to seeing what I did with my booth this time.  Sometimes for outdoor shows I hang up faux vines and have this woodland forest thing going on.  Sometimes I use color changing lights on top the tent, etc.  But anyway, this is one of the best looking setups I've ever done.  It's very elegant.  That's the best way I can describe it.  Very elegant. 

It took me three hours, too.  I've been up since 5AM and I haven't eaten anything since this morning.  By the time I was done, I was in so much pain and so exhausted.  But this hotel is freaking HUGE.  It took me an hour to get back to my hotel room because I got lost.  This is a high rise hotel with multiple shops, bars, restaurants, etc.  And there are two conventions going on this weekend.  They are expecting about 30k people here this weekend. 

So once I finally got to my room... I'm tired.  I'm hungry.  I just want to eat, shower and sleep right?  Well, the door shuts really hard in these rooms and I had both hands full.  So I had to set my bag outside the door to get in the room.  I took two steps outside to grab my bag and the damn door slammed shut and I locked myself out of the room.  Because I sat the room key down with the rest of my stuff. 

There was this guy out in the hall who looked like he worked here.  He didn't.  he turned out to be a doordash driver.  But he could see that I was upset.  I had no clue how to get back down to the front desk.  This place is like a freaking maze.  And my phone was at about 3% so I couldn't call the front desk either.  This guy asked me if I needed any help.  And by then I was just feeling so overwhelmed that I just broke down crying.  All vendors have these moments.  This is not the gravy job people think it is.  I told this guy I have no idea how to get back to the lobby, it took me an hour to find my way to my room, and I was inside for 30 seconds and then locked myself out.  This guy was awesome.  He told me his name was Anthony.  He asked what my name was.  I told him.  He said he delivers here all the time and that I could just follow him back to the lobby.  So I walked back down there with him and he actually went to the front desk with me and made sure I had a new key and stuff.  He asked if I needed anything else, etc.  I thanked him for making my day a little easier.  And I meant it. 

So now I'm here in my room with my feet up watching true crime and drinking a glass of wine.  The view from my window is spectacular.  It really is.  I am right downtown and my room is pretty high up, so I have this sprawling view of the city lights, etc.  It's so comforting.  Doing shows by myself is always sad and lonely.  But being able to look out the window and see this big city all around me is really nice.  It makes me feel a lot less alone. 

 

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So, last night I couldn't sleep.  I always have a hard time sleeping in hotel rooms, and I forgot my sleeping pills.  So I laid here and tossed and turned until 4ish.  I don't know what time I actually fell asleep, but the last time I looked at the clock it was 4:02.  So... I finally did fall asleep, and the damn alarm clock in the hotel room started going off at 6AM.  Vending didn't start till noon so I didn't have to be up super early.  The booth was already all set up and everything so...  So I shut the alarm off, lay down and try to go back to sleep, a half hour later the damn thing goes off again.  I couldn't unplug it.  The bed is a huge king bed and the cord goes under the bed.  And the bed has one of those wooden platforms under it so I can't crawl under it and unplug the thing.  So then I'm about to go back to sleep... and again, the f*cking alarm goes off.  So... I got like 1.5 hours of sleep. 

Today was an 11 hour day of vending.  It wasn't crazy busy but it was steady.  I made decent money.  But still not making a profit yet.  But today was Friday.  Saturday is always the huge day when it comes to three day cons.  Sunday is what we call Hangover day, lol.  There is so much partying going on downstairs.  I feel kind of bad for not being down there.  I met some amazing people today.  But... I also need to sleep.  I can't just only survive on a few hours of sleep for very long and still keep my resolve.  And tomorrow is the day I will need it most.  Vending doesn't technically start until noon.  But all the people in my row all decided we are going to be down there at 9ish.  It's an open hallway.  They can't stop us.  Plus it's not like the vendors being there in their booths is hurting anyone.  We are the ones choosing to put in the extra hours.  Since I am by myself that is a long day with no breaks.  But I have to do it.  No other choice.  Fourteen hours. 

There is a cheerleading completion here tomorrow that starts at around 10.  Because of where we are, all the people here for that will have to walk right by us.  We are in kind of a weird spot... not inside the tattoo convention, but in the hallway between several conventions.  Even though we are technically part of the tattoo convention.  The organizer told my neighbor they don't put vendors in the convention room because of bloodborn pathogens and needles and stuff.  And she also said we are out in the hall because we are not the main focus of the show, the tattoo artists are.    I can see that.  But at the same time, they shouldn't charge us the same amount of money they are charging the tattoo artists if we aren't in the convention room where most of the traffic is.  If we aren't the main focus, why are we paying the same fee?  I mean, $750 is a hefty vendor fee.  A tattoo artist can make that back in a few hours.  Idk...  there are plenty of people walking by us.  Which is fine.  I had steady customers all day today.  So I can see both sides of it. 

This chick bought and original painting from me but didn't want to carry it around, which is fine.  That happens a lot. I just put it behind the table, or leave it up and put a sold sticker on it.  So she was going to get some tattoos and then come back to get it.  But then her tattoos took longer than expected.  So when it was almost 11 and all the vendors were about to close up, she just comes running into my booth in a tank top and her panties.  She was like, "I didn't forget!  I'm still being tattooed."  She had a fresh tattoo outlined on her hip and a large bandaged up on on her ass cheek.  I just think it's funny that she ran across the convention like that to get her painting.  It's expected at a tattoo convention, though.  There are people walking around half naked all over the place.  She was hot, too so I doubt anyone minded.  

Walking around looking at the other art here is really inspiring.  I don't have tons of time... I see stuff on the way to the bathrooms, etc. 

Anyways... I could write a lot more but I'm exhausted and need to go to sleep.  I hope that flipping alarm clock doesn't go off again tomorrow. 

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So today I learned a new trick. 

I woke u this morning feeling so much better.  And I got dressed up today.  I mean, I had a nice outfit on yesterday but was just too tired to bother with doing anything special to my hair or putting on makeup.  Today I went all out, wore my best outfit I had with me.  Sexy black asymmetrical gown, black lace tights, crushed velvet high healed boots.  I wore a black rose in my hair.  I also wore black opera black lace gloves.  Not my long opera gloves though because I didn't want to cover up my tattoos.  I went down there with no makeup one but my plan was to do it at the booth.  

So, early vending was a great idea.  Everyone in my area came early and there were tons of people walking around.  I did hundreds in sales in those few hours.  I even sold one of my higher priced originals.  But then when all those people were inside the spearheading competition there was a time when things were calm.  I went into the bathroom to do my makeup. 

I don't wear makeup every day.  It's a special occasion thing.  But when I do I use high quality stuff.  I really wanted to do smokey eyes today.  So I was putting on my black eyeshadow and a little bit of it fell down below my eye.  So I think I will just lightly brush it off.  Big mistake.  It's Mac eyeshadow.  It's really pigmented and it lasts for hours and it doesn't come off without eye makeup remover.  But that was kinda the problem.  Trying to lightly brush it off made it worse.  So I took a paper towel and got it damp and tried to blot it off.  That just made it darker and made it spread around more. So, I took a small amount of hand soap and tried to wipe it off.  Omg... every attempt I made just made it so much worse.  So now I look like I've been punched in the eye.  AND I got the damn hand soap in my eye.  It her like a mfr so I was standing there over the sink just splashing water on my eye not even caring about ruining my makeup at this point.  So now there's water dripping down my face and my eye is just surrounded by black smudges.  Then this other vendor walked it to do her makeup.  She asked me what happened to my face and I told her what happened.  She put up her index finger and was like, "I know what to do!"  She dug in her bag and pulled out some hand cream. I closed my eyes and let her do her thing.  She used the hand cream to get all that crap off.  She put the cream on first and then used a baby wipe.  And it took it right off.  I have never heard of that before.  But from now on I will be prepared. 

The comradery among the vendor community is such an awesome thing.  Vendors are always looking out for each other.  At every show, the people in your area might start out as strangers but you get to know them.  There are a lot of people here that I know.  But both of my neighbors are people I've never met before.  And they are awesome. 

I got invited to do another tattoo festival in July.  I am so doing it.  The fact that tattoo festivals are mostly invitation only and I am starting to break into that scene is such a cool thing.  I'm really proud of myself.  Tattoo conventions have high standards.  There are festivals that will take anyone who can pay the fee.  But then there are the invitation only shows that are really picky.  If you would have told me a few years ago I would be doing IO shows I would have laughed. 

So according to the other vendors who have done this show before, tomorrow is the day when original art sells.  I sold about 200 prints today and one original.  But I guess tomorrow is the day when all the tattoo artists come out to shop.. They've been working their asses off for two days and they've made their money.  And tattoo artists love buying original art.  So tomorrow I will likely unload a few original paintings.  My Siren painting is getting so much attention.  I've had multiple people want her.  And they've all been tattoo artists.  They all say they will wait till Sunday.  Wonder who will get her?   

And I thought tomorrow was going to be a bust for me.  My brother was coming to get me tomorrow.  And my Mom texted me earlier and said I better be ready to walk out the door tomorrow at 4.  Well, the problem is the show goes until 8.  There seems to be this misconception that vendors just set their own hours and can come and go as they please.  Sometimes... but not usually.  Most shows have no problem with people staying longer than the set vending time, especially shows that take place in hotels, where the venue doesn't have to close at a certain time.  But leaving early is a HUGE no no.  That will get you blacklisted.  So when I got this text I had a conversation with Mom and my brother and they both wouldn't budge.  They both said no one would care if I left early.  So I went and talked to Jules, the organizer, and she straight up told me "If you leave four hours early I can't let you back in next year."  People don't get that we are contracted.  Even if I own my own business and I retain all the profit I make, I am still under contract to be set up and open for a certain time.  That's part of the vendor agreement.  If I leave then I am violating the contract and there are other vendors who are dying to be here.  They aren't going to give the covneted spots to people who leave early. 

My ex was blacklisted from PPPD for closing down early one year.  He started breaking thebooth down 15 minutes before it was time.  And even though I kept my booth open the whole time they blacklisted me just because I was his girl.  That has been lifted though.  The organizer hated him and figured we were a package deal.  She thought if she let me in it would just be a conduit for him to wiggle his way back in by proxy.  But now that we aren't together anymore she came and talked to me and told em I'm welcome back at PPPD any time I want to do it.  And his ass is still blacklisted.  It's been about 5 years now. 

So anyway, I'm such a badass.  I'm seriously so proud of myself because while dealing with a steady stream of customers I solved this problem.  I posted on Facebook asking if anyone could help.  I have a friend who as coming to Hell City tomorrow anyway and he drives a big ass SUV that will hold all my stuff.  I told him I would cover his gas.  I also said I would buy him dinner.  And since I get two free weekend passes, for me and a helper, and I didn't use one, he gets in for free.  So, now I don't have to leave and miss out on all the sweet Sunday money.  And more importantly I'm not getting blacklisted.  I'm definitely coming back next year.  This show has been a lot more profitable than I thought it would be.  I was worried, considering my hotel room cost me almost a grand.  The convention center is connected to three hotels, total.  There is a skywalk connected them all.  I didn't know that when I booked this hotel.  This is the only one that's a 5 star hotel.  So next year I will be staying at the 3 star hotel across the street.  I mean, yes this is a nice hotel and it's been really nice licving luxuriously for the past couple days.  But I don't need to be spoiled and pampered.  As long as their aren't roaches crawling around and the room is clean I'm happy.  When I stay somewhere for a festival I spend so little time in the room anyway.  This hotel has a pool, but I haven' had time to go swimming.  The bar is really nice.  But I pai $9 for a tequila sunrise earlier today.  They were in special and I kept seeing customers with them so I wanted to try it.  If $9 was the special price than what are they normally?  And there couldn't have been much tequila in it at all because I didn't taste it and didn't feel any effects.  

So yea...  Vending starts at noon tomorrow.  But I'm going downstairs at 9ish.  Tomorrow is going to kick so much ass.  I have to check out tomorrow morning and take all my stuff to the booth.  I have it all packed, though and ready to go. 

Once again I feel guilty that I'm now downstairs partying.  But I worked the booth for 14 hours by myself today.  I'm an introvert.  I have to recharge.  It's not like any of the other vendors are down there partying.  Every vendor I talked to was going straight back to the room and to bed.  And the vendors are the people I know.  So yea... I could go down there to the after party.  But since I don't know anyone there and I'm introverted and shy, what am I going to do?  Stand there?  I can't afford to drink.  I did think it would be nice to hook up this weekend though... if I found the right person.  I mean, I have J.  We both find each other appealing in that way, but that's all.

This weekend I have missed Z terribly.  She was supposed to be here with me.  She is the main reason I booked the crazy expensive hotel.  There is the convenience of staying at the venue.  But I also just really wanted to spoil her and treat her like my Princess.  If my princess wants a 5 star hotel room just for the experience, I'll give it to her.  And now I'm here alone.  And two of my biggest selling prints are paintings I did of her.  It's been 9 months and I still feel so lost.  And I know she does too... that's so confusing.  This could all be over.  But she doesn't want it to be.  I started rising when she left and she started falling.  I started fixing up my place and making it a more pleasant place to live.  She is now homeless.  I stopped drinking all the time.  She drinks more.  I started working on myself.  She stopped working on herself and just gets drunk.  She used to say we mirrored each other.  Well sometimes mirroring isn't a good thing if you think of it in terms of opposition.  I'm rising and she's falling.  How will we ever meet in the middle again?  Being down here all alone has been so hard.  I still love her so much.  I've had dreams about her for the last two nights, too.  I just don't understand why this had to happen...

Jesus... could there be a more appropriate song for what I just wrote.  And Damn you Spotify.  I didn't seek it out.  It came on right when I was finishing typing that last paragraph...

And I decided I can't take it right now. 

*Shuffles*

There... this is better. 

 

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Well, I made it home in one peace, a few grand richer.  Now the house payment will get paid on time and maybe my upstairs shower will get fixed finally. 

The house is so quiet it's creepy. 

I was thinking today about perspective...  I made several thousand at this show.  It was one of my highest grossing shows ever.  I've been doing festivals since 2014.  The first one I ever did was a one day show and I made $300ish.  I thought I was really hot sh*t.  I remember the first time I pulled over $500 in a day was huge for me.  Then the first time I pulled over $1000 was huge.  Then 2k, then 3k, etc.  Every time you make more the bar gets raised.  Now if I did a one day show and made $300 I would consider it a waste of my time and probably not go back. 

The vendors in my area this weekend were all awesome people.  But they came from different backgrounds.  The guy at the end who is a career artist travels all over the country selling his amazing oil paintings.  Most of his paintings are between $400-900.  His prints are $25.  I thought he was absolutely killing it.  He sold two $900 originals and it seemed like everyone who came into my booth was carrying one of his prints.  I was thinking Wow... dude is killing it over there.  But earlier today when he came over to talk to me, he was pissed.  He told me he will never do Hell City again.  This was his first time.  He said he can't believe it's been 3 whole days of vending and he's only made 12 grand.  Gods...  I wouldn't know what to do if I made 12 grand at one show. 

The lady next to me with her Gothic clothing and accessories was also pissed.  She didn't sell much and her stuff was really affordable.  But she seemed busy the whole time. 

The guy on the other side of me... who's work was phenomenal, His prints were $5 and he even had a buy two get one free deal.  I heard him say to his wife at one point that they just broke $1500.  They were ecstatic.  It made me happy seeing them get all excited.  I was seeing the other two be really upset, so it was nice to see someone else being excited about how well they were doing. 

I had my biggest single sale ever today.  A tattoo artist  who was done tattooing for the weekend came into my booth.  She told me she has walked by a dozen times and has been looking forward to this all weekend.  She spent $479.  I actually knocked it down to $450 because she was buying so much.  I've never had someone drop that much money at one time in my booth... Not even close.  And then 20 minutes later another tattoo artist who was done for the weekend came over and spent $235. 

The fact that so many people are willing to pay for my work still blows my mind.  I saw so many amazing artists over the weekend...  I remember thinking "What the hell am I doing here?  I am so out of my element!"  But who knows how many of those same artists walked by my booth and thought the same thing when looking at my work?  Imposter syndrome is something all artists struggle with.  I catch myself thinking stuff like that a lot.  Like what would happen if they ever find out I actually suck and I've just been faking being a good artist all these years?  Then what?   But stuff like this weekend makes me remember I'm not an imposter. 

 

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I was talking to my Mom a little bit ago and I asked her if she could give me a ride to the bank so I could deposit the cash from this weekend.  No way I'm walking with that kind of money on me.  Then my plan was to just go hang out at the coffee shop by the bank for about an hour and then walk the block or so up the street and go to Al Anon.  And my Mom was trying to talk me out of going tonight.  I said I haven't been to a meeting in a month because stuff just keeps happening and I haven't been able to make it.  And she's like, "Well why don't you just stay home.  You don't need to sit in the coffee shop for an hour.  Just don't go."  Sitting in the coffee shop for an hour isn't an inconvenience.  I like going to the coffee shop. 

Idk why she has been doing this.  It's like every time I mention A Anon she tries to come up with a reason I shouldn't go.  I originally didn't even want to tell her I was going.  But I'm a bad liar.  I forget how it came up but her and I were on the phone on a Monday night and I told her I need to go because I have to be somewhere and she wanted to know where. 

Idk...  My Mom went to one AA meeting years ago and it really rubbed her the wrong way.  AA isn't for everyone.  I get that.  So maybe she thinks this is the same.  I have a friend who is in recovery who went to one AA meeting who said the same thing.

And I have had to explain to a few people that Al Anon and AA aren't the same thing. 

My Mom has said in the past, "You're not the one with the problem, so why are you going to meetings?"  My answer was for support.  And she's like, "You don't get enough support from the people around you?"  Well she seems to be forgetting that a lot of "the people around me" are substance abusers. 

Last week when I was color my hair L was talking to me about how she's not drinking anymore and how she's going to be sober from now on.  Today she came home with a bunch of tallboys and brought me one.  She doesn't notice that I don't drink the tallboys she brings me.  They just sit there until she forgets that she intended that one for me and drinks it herself. 

It's also interesting that she wants me to keep drinking.  I've seen this kind of thing before.  Addicted people don't want to be the only one with an addiction.  I had another friend a while ago who would only drink at the bar if I was drinking.  And if she wanted another drink she would start encouraging me to go get another drink just so she could get another drink.  She didn't have a drinking problem though.  Idk it was just this weird thing.  She didn't want to be the only one with a drink in her hand.  She would also preach at me and say things like, "Every time I see you you're drinking."  "Well, that's because every time you see me it's at the bar."  She was part of this group of friends who always met up at this one bar downtown. 

Z used to do a variation of this, too.  When we would be hanging out on the porch every time she would go in and get another beer she would just bring another one out and set it by me.  If I didn't drink it fast enough eh would just grab it and drink it herself.

I'm not really sure where I'm going with all this.  Behaviors like this are interesting to me. 

 

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I was working on some clerical stuff just now and had on this video in the background about Kurt Cobain.  But it's a video about the other artistic things he did besides music. 

They were talking about how when he was a kid he drew facial features first and then drew the head around them.  And this is more like how a formally trained artist draws instead of how most people would draw.  I just found that interesting because I would do that as a kid too and people commented about it like it was wrong.  My art teacher when I was like10-11 scolded me in front of the whole class for doing that.  She was like, "Draw the head first, don't draw the eyes first."  And I remember my parents getting all annoyed with me once while watching me draw.  My Mom was like, "Why did you draw the eyes and the mouth first.  That's not how you're supposed to draw people." 

Unlike the people who commented on me doing it, Kurt Cobain's Uncle made note of it and thought it was a sign of his artistic talent. 

I'm not comparing myself to him.  I'm not trying to say I'm some great artistic genius like him or anything.  I just thought the paralell was interesting.  Here is the video if anyone is curious...

 

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Just for sh*ts and giggles... Here are some things you should never say/do to a visually impaired person.

How many fingers am I holding up? 

Seriously... if you are one of those people who do that, stop it.  Do you have any freaking clue how rude and insulting that is?  Do you think you're being funny?  You're not.  I guarantee the person you did that too wants to smack you at worst and cuss you out at best. 

It's over there.

Over where?  You need to be more specific.

Why don't you just have lasik?

Um, hello dumb*ss, if it was that simple I would have done it already.  Lasik doesn't fix every vision issue.  Some vision issues, like mine, can't be fixed.  My optic nerve didn't develop all the way in the womb because my Mom was a lush and a smoker.  There is NO WAY to fix that.  Don't argue with me and tell me there is, either.  Don't tell me your cousin's girlfriend's roommate's niece's next door neighbor's Mom had the same thing and she had it fixed.  She didn't.  And you're a moron.  Trust me, I've had a lifetime to do research on my own condition.  If there was some cure out there I would know it. 

You could drive if you really wanted to. 

Do you realize how dangerous it would be for me to drive?  Would you feel safe with me out on the road?  Because if you would then you're f*cking stupid. 

You don't look visually impaired.

Really? I don't?  Well you don't look stupid either but here we are. 

I feel so sorry for you.

You shouldn't.  I live a pretty good life.  Being disabled doesn't automatically mean my life is a miserable Hell every day. 

And these aren't things that people say, but things people do...

Don't offer help unless we ask for it. 

We aren't going to get offended if you say words like "look" or "see." 

Don't call attention to it every 5 seconds. 

Don't speak to the other people with us as if we aren't there. 

Don't be a creep and try to touch me under the guise of helping.  (It's scary how many times this has happened to me.)  Some creep finds out I have vision problems and just decides he's going to be the white knight and help me down the stairs by putting his hands all over me.  I can walk down stairs just fine.  Touch me again and I'll scream rape at the top of my lungs a*shole.  (Ok, I probably wouldn't actually do that but I'm just working my nerves here.) 

And don't act like I'm mentally disabled just because I'm physically disabled.   This doesn't just apply to the visually impaired either.  I have a friend who is a literary agent. She has multiple college degrees.  She's in a wheelchair and people will come up to her in public and talk babytalk to her like they think she's not capable of having a real conversation.  And her girlfriend often gets mistaken for her caregiver.   

Okie...  I just had to get that out because of some of the things people say sometimes.  I've had a lot of that lately and it just gets so frustrating. 

I will admit though, there have been a couple times I've used my impairment to make rude people look like total asshats.  I remember I was working at a festival out of state once and it was late at night.  I went in this gas station and wanted to buy a tallboy.  Well, they didn't sell alcohol after 1AM.  The lady was like, "We can't sell this after 1AM."  And she was really snarky about it.  I said, "Sorry I didn't know."  And she was like, "There's a sign right there.  What can't you read?"  I smiled at her and said, "I can read just fine but I'm legally blind." She shut right up.  I've had the satisfaction of doing this a few times. 

Anyway... I was supposed to meet up with J tonight.  But he ended up having to go pick up his daughter.  Last time we planned anything it was me who backed out because it was when I had the flu.  I was hoping to release some tension this evening.  Oh well. 

 

Edited by Cynder
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Lately there seems to be a theme... the alcoholics I know making a big show of saying they are quitting... and then not quitting.  Maybe they always did this and I just never made note of it before now because my Dad used to do it all the time too.  I didn't start really paying attention until I started going to Al Anon. 

Last week Elijah was so gungho about getting sober.  He's NEVER drinking again.  He's going to AA, etc.  Tonight he messaged me drunk off his ass. 

L seems to do it about once a month.  But for her I think it's for attention, honestly.  I don't think she has any intention of actually quitting.  I think it's just so she can announce it on social media and have everyone tell her how strong and courageous she is.  When she starts up again two days later she doesn't announce that on Facebook, though.  Funny.

I really do think Elijah wanted to quit though.  He went to one AA meeting and he said it really creeped him out. 

And they aren't the only two.  There have been a few others here lately.  I'm just mentioning them because they have been written about enough here that they are familiar. 

My Mom tells me I need to hook up with Elijah because he's such a nice guy and he likes me.  Sorry but my standards are practically impossible.  Being nice and liking me are not even the bare minimum. 

RIght now I am still in that mindset that there are only two groups of people in the world.  People I would date and people I wouldn't date.  Who I would date= Z.  Who I wouldn't date= the rest of the human race.  One group is really small.  The other group is really big.  Idk, I just don't think it's fair or wise to date someone when you're in love with someone else.  And I'm still in love with her, sadly. 

I told my Mom I won't date anyone else with a drinking problem... ever.  Unless maybe it was someone who had been sober for 20ish years and held down a job and wasn't in any danger of falling off the wagon.  Even then, though, it would take some serious convincing.  I only know one person who quit and stuck to it.  And he's in prison.  It's really easy to quit drinking in prison, lol.  Even him though... when he gets out he will probably be right back to it.  No one ever really quits. 

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So apparently Elijah is drunk again.  Idk why I'm his go to person to text whenever he's sh*tfaced.  But I am.  Not convinced that's a good thing. 

I was doing some work and has this on in the background tonight.  Very interesting and well done.

 

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Omg... when you've been awake for 24 hours straight, worked all night, gone to Yoga class, bought and priced inventory, and ans caught up with a friend from 2 hours away that you just randomly ran into and you're slap happy exhausted, this is the funniest sh*t on the internet.  (Ended up on the weird end of YouTube.)

 

 

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So L is having another one of her meltdowns.  I'm sure this will result in her third vacation to the psych ward this year.  I say vacation because that's how she treats it.  She doesn't have to pay because she gets government assistance.  (Still not sure how that works exactly.  She works full time and makes decent money and her only expenses are rent (which she hardly pays) and her car payment... but whatever.  I'm not the US government.)  But she goes to the psych ward for free and just chills for a week and then comes home and gives everyone a sob story about how her life is so hard.  Ten months ago when I was on the verge of killing myself and really wanted to go to the psych ward for help I couldn't because I couldn't afford it. 

But anyway... all she's done is drink and cry.  She asked me if we could turn the air on and I told her no because that adds a lot to the electric bill.  Right now I am living paycheck to paycheck and don't have a ton of wiggle room.  So unless she wants to start paying rent on a regular basis I can't afford it.  Yesterday I woke up and the air was on.  And where was she?  Sitting outside.  The air is off now.  I'm not going to pay for her ass to live in luxury. 

Personally I think it's hilarious watching her self destruct.  Is that mean and cold hearted of me.  Sure is.  But she was mean and cold hearted last year when I was going through the worst time of my life.  She sided 100% with the person who put me there. 

She loves starting drama for her own entertainment.  She was always trying tos tart *** between Z and I, and even when I was married she tried to start drama between my ex husband and I.  She gets such a kick out of screwing people who are taken. (I'm still pretty sure she screwed my ex husband...) She loves to brag about the time she broke some guy and his fiance up, etc.  She was friends with this guy's fiance' and then she would screw him and they would laugh at his fiance' behind her back. 

I also think she contributed a lot to Z having such a problem with alcohol.  I mean yea, alcoholism is a choice on some level.  But when Z and I first lived together she didn't drink that much.  Then L enters the picture and just wants to get sh*tfaced every night.  L would get me alone and be like, "I think your woman has a drinking problem."  But then when Z was around it was, "Oh come on, do anything shot.  Don't be a lightweight.  Come on let's get wasted!"  "Omg you're so funny when you're drunk!!!"   Ok...  L just got to see the fun side.  L didn't have to deal with cleaning up vomit.  L didn't have to worry about her falling asleep on her back and choking to death.  And L didn't have to deal with the mean drunk that I had to deal with.  Z was either a really funny silly drunk or she was an incredibly mean drunk.  And usually it was just one drink that flipped the switch.  And whenever the mean side started coming out, L would just go in and go to bed and then I would have to deal with the mean side.  I tried talking to L about this a couple times and was always just told, "Well it's her choice!"  Ok... but it's a choice she probably wouldn't have made if you weren't shoving the bottle in her face and teasing her about being a lightweight. Peer pressure doesn't go away when you hit adulthood. 

She thinks her swastika tattoos and her white power tattoo make her soooo baaaad. She's scum.  

And she's been putting on weight.  Since she relies on looks to get away with so much that's not going to be fun for her when she's fat and can't just cost by on being hot anymore. 

Here comes the karma bus.  I'm not driving, but I'm having fun on the ride.  Time to get what's coming to you, b*tch.

And, for anyone reading this wondering why I'm not worried for K... K's dad keeps him blissfully unaware of a lot of this.  When she gets like this K just doesn't come over.  And it sucks because I don't get to see him.  But I'm glad his dad is such a great dad. 

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So I went on a date tonight. 

I have known this guy for a long time.  We've been friendly acquaintances for about 20 years.  He's an economics professor at OSU.  We have an OSU branch here in my town and that's where he teaches.  If you saw him walking down the street you would never think that's what he does for a living though.  He looks like a total hippie. 

Right after my ex husband and I split up I actually had a crush on him for a time. A lot of my friends knew this and would tease me about "The Professor."   I want to message some of them and tell them, "Hey, tonight I went out with The Professor." 

He's been reading my novel and giving me feedback on it, because he writes too.  So this started out as us getting together to talk about writing.  He picked me up and said he was going to show me his office.  So we went to the OSU campus here in town and went walking around in the woods.  There is a Koi pond back in there that has a table by it.  So we sat and talked for a while and then went and got Asian food. 

Nothing happened.  I didn't even kiss him.  I'm not ready for that and I told him I'm not looking for anything serious.  He's ok with that.  This was just casual.  He is so sophisticated... He's traveled all over the world.  He has 2 PnDs.  He speaks 7 languages.  Part of me wonders why in the hell he would find someone like me interesting.  But he does. 

And then Sunday I'm meeting up with J.  It's just interesting... Going on a date with someone on Friday and not even kissing them because I don't want to get too attached.  But then on Sunday I'm gonna go to J's room at the Hilton and screw his brains out before just being like, "Bye, see you in a month or so when you're in town again!  The sex was great!"  I'm sure most psychologists would have a field day with me. 

J travels around for work.  He works for a company that is a household name in the US.  He's probably got a girl in every town he goes to, if not more than one.  I might not be his only girl in my town.  But I don't care.  He's good looking and fun to f.  He likes thick girls with tattoos.  He is not my type at all, though.  That doesn't bother me because if he was my type I might start getting attached to him. 

L is in the psych ward for the 4th time this year.  Hope she's enjoying her vacation.  That's all it is to her.  It must be nice to just go check yourself into the psych ward whenever you get a little upset.  10 months ago when I felt like I really needed the psych ward I couldn't afford it. 

Tomorrow I will wake up, go to Aerial Yoga, come home, go back to bed for a few hours, then get back up and go get tattooed.  Wish every day could be like that.  And if anyone is wondering why I will go back to bed, it's because usually when I get up and go to yoga class I've only had about 2 hours of sleep.  It's part of life when you work the night shift.  I probably won't go to bed until 6 or 7 tomorrow morning.  It's after 10PM here but this is still my morning. 

Been on a real GWAR kick lately.  When I was a senior in high school I listened to this album a lot... probably too much, lol.  It's still a great album... probably because I still have the same sophomoric sense of humor sometimes. 

 

Edited by Cynder
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So...  I feel like I need to tell a little more backstory about me and the Professor.  I will refer to him as T. 

When my ex husband and I split up I had a huge crush on T.  My sister and I were a little closer at that time.  And I made the mistake of telling her I liked him.  She knows him too because at the time she was a cook in a restaurant that he was a regular at.  Well, I told her I had a crush on him and she decided to go and sit with him the next time he was in the restaurant and basically hit on him. 

My Mom knew about this too and they both thought it was hilarious.  That just makes such a huge statement about the kind of people they are.  I told my sister I liked him.  So she decides to just play him for her own amusement and to hurt me.  And my Mom knows all about this and thinks it's just hilarious.  My sister would text me, "Your boyfriend came in the restaurant last night.  He wants me so bad! lol Sorry! xoxox!" 

My sister is also a lesbian, just for the record.  T didn't know that though. 

And my Mom would tell me "Wow that guy you know is so into your sister.  I think he would marry her if she was into him too." And she would laugh about it.  And she would say things like, "I know you liked him but he's really a better fit with your sister.  He's such a good guy." 

This went on for months.  My sister would flirt with him and hint around that she likes him, but then blow him off. 

Well then time passed, I started dating my ex Aaron... who I was with for years.  And once I no longer had any interest, my sister just stopped talking to T altogether and even started being nasty to him.  At one point she even told him she was never interested and that she only was pretending to like him to piss me off. 

This all happened over a decade ago. 

But there was a time like 5 years ago or so when I ran into T out and about.  And he asked how my sister is doing.  I told him she just moved to another city a few hours away.  He asked what made her move there and I said that's where her girlfriend lives.  And he asked what I meant by her girlfriend.  And I told him the woman she's dating.  And he got pissed at me.  He didn't know she was gay and he decided I was evil for telling him that and he said I'm a liar. 

Well, fast forward a few more years.  He messaged me on Facebook because he was about to go down to Ecuador.  He was going down there for work, but while he was there he was also planning on doing Ayahuasca for the first time.  He wanted to talk to me about that.  He didn't know what to expect, etc.  So we had this really long conversation about it. 

So now we are up to date...

Well last night after I was done getting tattooed, T stopped by and we sat on my porch talking for a while.  He lives right around the corner from me.  I can actually see his house from my house. 

So last night we were talking on my front porch and he started opening up about the whole thing with my sister.  And he was talking about how she really hurt him bad and really broke his heart.  And I told him she only did that to him because she knew I liked him.  And he was actually really surprised to hear that I liked him years ago.  And he was like, "Well now you could have me.  But you don't want me." 

And sadly, he's right.  The whole situation is sad on a lot of levels.  Because if I would have just kept my damn mouth shut years ago my sister wouldn't have gotten in the middle of things and ruined what could have been a good thing. 

And stuff like this is why I"m not close with my sister anymore.  We didn't get along as kids at all because she was the perfect princess who could do no wrong and I was the evil hell child who could do no right.  But as adults we put a lot of that in the past and we got along for a while.  But being raised to think she can do whatever she wants has made her kind of a sh*tty person. 

I am not wanting a relationship with anyone right now.  And I especially don't want to date someone who is only settling for me because they can't be with my sister.  Family gatherings would sure be interesting, lol. 

He was leaving this morning to go to a conference in Indianapolis.  I thought about texting him to tell him to have a safe trip.  But I don't want to send mixed signals.  To me it would just be me being friendly.  But he might interpret it as "she likes me." 

It's interesting how situations play out. 

 

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"Family gatherings would sure be interesting"... 

I just have to share this. A guy I was childhood friends with married his brother's ex wife. Ok, so honestly, they are a way better fit and should have been together in the first place. But here's the weird bit. She has children with both of them. So the kids are both cousins and brother/sisters. 

Hmm say you grew up around rednecks without saying you grew up around rednecks, yes?!? Lol. 

It is funny how that all came around like that with the professor. Maybe you two  just aren't meant to be.. I don't even really believe in meant to be, but some find their way together no matter what and sometimes it's the other way, like here. 

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