Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Feel and Forget

What does being forgotten feel like?

Does it feel like no one sees you or hears you? Does it feel like a constant cloud hanging above your head, threatening to drench any mote of hope or happiness even before it’s brought to fruition in your head? Does it feel as if you could fall or crash and nothing would break, because you were made of nothing in the first place?

Being forgotten is being numb, ignored, cheated, neglected and pushed aside. It’s a horrible, haunting reminder that your life is seemingly insignificant simply because others deem it so. Being forgotten is the realization that someone you put importance in, someone whom you gave substance and form to, someone you placed faith and hope in, turned away and left as if you were no more than the last breath they exhaled: used and unnecessary.


But how can we forget anything that houses a soul and spirit? How can we discard something as precious as another living, breathing, thinking being?

And yet, some of us do it so easily. We do it to the overworked cashier who smiles good morning, even when we can’t be bothered to look them in the face. We do it to the people on the street. We do it to babies in the womb. We do it to people we once loved more than ourselves; people we’ve whispered promises to in the dark; people we’ve given our own tears and sweat and souls to...

We do it over and over and over. We do it unfeelingly, or with so much feeling that it becomes impossible to feel anything anymore.

We forget because it's easier than carrying the burden of memories. We forget because we're weak or tired or scared. We forget when we all know that deep down, forgetting isn't permanent. Forgetting is just throwing the dust cover on a piece of furniture you don't want anyone to see. It's pretending.

Forgetting can't be permanent.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

The Face

Men make many faces when they speak to women. But there is one that stands out above the rest.

Most women have seen it; most men have no idea that they do it. It's a face that's made usually while the man is gazing at the woman while she's speaking, or while he's speaking directly to her.

His eyes go half mast, the lines around them smooth out. His cheeks relax into a soft, little smile, a smile that barely raises the corners of his mouth. This smile is quiet and still, yet unexpected. His gaze may flicker from the woman's eyes, down to her mouth, and back up again. His eyes are deep and brilliant and full of secrets.

The Face is always welcome when it comes from a man you like. In those moments, The Face is beautiful and causes all kinds of butterflies and bashfulness. For example, the man and woman are on a date, and when the woman is talking about her job, the man inadvertently reveals The Face. The woman immediately senses it (we're good at this) and all of sudden, everything looks different. It looks BETTER.

However, The Face is not welcome when it interrupts an otherwise platonic man-woman conversation. For example, a man and woman are having platonic coffee, and he shoots her The Face while she makes a joke about sports or something. Said woman sees The Face, is immediately alerted, and switches to "WE'RE JUST FRIENDS, BACK OFF" mode.

The Face is real and without pretense. It's a glimpse into the thoughts of men that so often elude the rest of us.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009


Online dating is damn depressing, yet damn insightful. When looking at people’s profiles, I see them post things like, “I’m only trying this out” or “No one knows I’m doing this” or “I’m new to this whole dating thing” or “I’m just looking for the third person to my threesome”. (I've seriously seen that last one... and my faith in humanity lowered a bit more.)

Okay, so in addition to the people who have to preface all of their stuff with “Oh, I would NEVER normally do online dating”, there are the people who are looking for casual sex, multiple partners of either sex, or who try to deny monogamy on some stupid philosophical level. This all points to one thing in my mind: simultaneous fear of and desperate need for intimacy. The people not wanting monogamy are probably so afraid of the vulnerability that comes with monogamous intimacy, that they spread the love around in hopes that the burn won’t be so bad. Or maybe they’re just horny bastards, but honestly, I believe that even horny bastards wanted true love at some point and just got turned around by fear or trauma or something else entirely.

That brings me to my next pondering: every last person on this planet craves intimacy. We crave it so badly we look anywhere for it. ANYWHERE. As humans, we need closeness. We need to love and to belong. Somewhere inside us is someone who wants the responsibility of loving someone else so completely that we forget everything else. I believe we are all, on some level, looking for that connection, that one person who finally - FINALLY - gets us.

I mean, the sad truth is that no one will ever know us completely, as we know ourselves. That’s impossible. And in our fast-paced, electronic society it’s becoming harder and harder to find the intimacy that even comes close. We’re having to go through our freaking computers for goodness sake! After high school or college or the age of 21, it becomes increasingly difficult to meet people. Sure, you can go out to clubs or concerts or random people’s parties, but how often will you meet anyone different enough to risk your heart on?

And so… people go online. Like me. I don’t think there is a damn thing wrong with using the internet AS A TOOL. It’s when people use it as a replacement for the real thing; those people who just chat with other people and use that as a means to feed their need for cheap intimacy. But try as they might, computers will never get close to producing the one-of-a-kind, heart breaking, bittersweet, breath taking love that we are capable of sharing (if we find the courage). Computers can help you find someone, but they stop there. Computers can't love you or hug you or do anything other than lead you to someone you might not have found otherwise. We have to build that connection with a living, breathing human being. And we have to have endurance and faith and hope. Always hope.

Somewhere inside all of us is the inexhaustible desire to feel a little less alone (even the sleaze-bags feel that, only it’s buried beneath all that machismo bullshit). And seeing these electronic faces searching relentlessly for love, gives me hope that maybe I won’t be alone forever, that I won't always be tonightless.

Because at the end of the day, that is one of my greatest fears.

"Am I gonna be tonightless again? All the loneliness has got to end." - Eighteen Visions

Thursday, November 12, 2009

The Damn Cat

It's 3:36AM and I am sitting in my bed, wishing my Australian penpal was online so I had someone to talk to. My heart is racing, I'm shaking and I feel like something horrible is about to happen. Which it isn't, but it's just a wonderful side-effect of a nighttime panic attack. I'm serious! I've been having them for awhile now, and they're different from my normal night terrors. Or maybe they're the same thing, I don't know. I'm not a psychiatrist. But I do have a DSM, so maybe I should diagnose myself...

Anyway, to make matters worse, I keep hearing these little noises, bumps and such. It's freaking me out. And I KNOW it's Booju. Who is Booju, you wonder? Well, you may have already guessed from the blog title, but Booju is the damn cat himself...

We got Booju the Christmas of 2007. He was from a litter that was born on my birthday. Also, he looked exactly like Booba, our long-haired black cat that disappeared (aka became coyote chow) when we moved across town. And so, we fell in kitty love with Booju, which aptly stands for Booba Junior. Yeah.

He seemed like such a normal, quiet kitten. When we brought him home, he romped and played with the Christmas bows under the tree and we thought we might choke from all the cuteness in the room. Little did we know that he was crazy. Is crazy.

I really think that Booju has feline amnesia. Every day. He'll walk into the kitchen some mornings, all creeping and wide-eyed, and look at everything as if he was on an alien planet and was checking for signs of life. And if you so much as say his name, he jumps 10 feet in the air. Other mornings he'll meow and meow until someone feeds him, and if they don't hurry, he'll bite their feet. Some days he disappears only to be found hours later, napping in a shoe box or on the back of a chair (which he has all his claws dug into in case someone tries to ricochet him off the back... which may have happened before...).

In any case, right now he's probably either biting his own tail, or attacking dust bunnies; both of which cause little noises that just make my heart rate spike. That damn cat. So much for calming down enough to go to sleep again before the sun rises.

Eh, sleep is overrated. That's what coffee is for.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Listen at Your Own Risk

The other day I was browsing the hair products in Target with my sister. I saw a pink bottle of curl scrunching spray and said, "Oh look! Squirrel crunching spray!"

This was not on purpose.

This was my brain's lazy-ass attempt at speech. The more stressed I get, the worse it gets. Sometimes I will develop a lisp that lasts half a sentence. Other times, I try to say two things at once and get "borrible" (horrible + bad) or "nood" (good + nice). And still other times I stutter or stop mid sentence because my brain decides to put on the screen saver. It's embarrassing.

Moral of the story: more sleep plus less stress makes for easier listening.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

I'm a jerk.

No really, I am a jerk. For the first time in a long time, I am seeing the past with unclouded eyes. Mostly, I've been ruminating over my past relationship and WHOA.

I had it all wrong. I messed up big time.

I see this now, but there's nothing to do with it. How can I change what already happened? I can't. All I can do is use this newfound insight to make the 'now' better.

Sigh. What's a recovering jerk to do?

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Boxes of nostalgia...

I've been cleaning out my keepsakes. I didn't realize how much stuff I considered significant enough to keep. I also didn't realize how easy it is to get caught up in all the 'what ifs' those keepsakes bring.

Moral of the story: Reminiscing should only be done when you've completely and totally accepted your present as it is. Which is hardly ever... going back in time is a dangerous undertaking, hence my pseudo-zen attitude of "now is all that matters".


Sunday, May 24, 2009


I freaking hate it because I have this urge, no need, to write all day but by the time I get home, I’m too tired/stressed/depressed/feeling sorry for myself that I hop into bed and distract my brain. When I’m at work, I’m constantly living in my head, letting it spin and swirl and take me where it needs to. I wish I could take notes while it does this – I would have a lot of material by now. But instead, I sit and stew until I go into a mind coma. It gets so bad I do stupid stuff like take my stapler to the kitchen thinking it's my coffee mug. Or I forget how to load labels in the printer I've used 34878932408976 times (approx.) It’s hard for me to focus on people, even talk to them, because it takes a lot of effort for me to pull my consciousness out of itself. I eventually do though, just in time to drive home and complain about it.

I experience the world by peering out of my brain, when I should be living it with my whole body, mind and soul. I feel like I’m just working through this hour to get to the next hour to get to the next hour. I’m waiting, biding time, wasting time… I think I’m waiting for my real life to start. The problem is that I don’t know what that real life is, where to look for it, or if it even exists for me. Isn’t the present my real life?

I find comfort in knowing that I’m not the only one experiencing this. At the same time, it’s nice to feel original. Originality is pretty much extinct; we merely copy everyone before us, but do it from our own perspective. Somehow this makes it original, when really it’s just a fresh spin on something that’s been done before. Well, I guess that is one definition of original. Whatever.

I’m tired of feeling trapped. I feel trapped at work. I feel trapped in this tiny room at my family’s home. I feel trapped within my own loneliness and doubt. Usually when I go outside, the relief is overwhelming. Sometimes I cry. Okay, a lot of times I cry. At church yesterday, the priest talked about faith. He said, “We need to move from our minds to our hearts, from understanding to believing.” That really struck a chord with me. I realized that I am so full of doubt, wariness and suspicion, that I have no room for faith and love! What happened to me?

Maybe if I held on to my faith, if I gave it reason to stick around, then maybe I wouldn’t feel so suffocated. Faith, and belief in God and all that He is, is an instant mood stablizer. Having faith implies having love, patience, acceptance and peace. I must have faith. I must.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Works well under pressure.

Instead of studying for my final in two days, I'm sitting in a study lounge listening to a woman discuss how disappointing soy cheese is. I do this every time: procrastinate until my test anxiety rises so high that I buckle down with a week's worth of coffee, and study until my eyeballs fall out. Sometimes I even have the audacity to complain that, 'Ugh... this teacher requires too much! I don't have time for this!'

Oh, but I have had time. Plenty of time, in fact. Yes, I'm working. Yes, I have hobbies and other activities that take up my time. And yes, I am quite capable of rearranging my priorities to accommodate my studies. But I don't.

Blame it on my work load, blame it on my teachers, blame it on our increasingly electronic society for providing endless amounts of distraction. Blame on anything, really, but the truth is, I'm just plain ol' procrastinating. Others, namely older people who are holding me accountable, may assume that I'm unmotivated, uninterested, lazy, undeserving, blah blah blah.

I am actually none of those. I think I'm just overwhelmed. And not just with my studies, but life in general. It has a tendency to blow by with such speed and ferocity that I have to distract myself from watching it pass me by. I procrastinate to keep myself from working towards a potentially unsuccessful end, and thus just more lost time. Besides, it's too depressing to wave at that time and those lost possibilities. 'Bye back-packing across Europe! So long novel-length manuscript! Take care kick-ass job opportunity! Don't let the door hit you on the way out!' See what I mean? Oh but wait. I'm ruminating, aren't I? And I'm making excuses, too? Well, hell. I'm fairly certain that's another form of procrastination.

Alright, alright. Fine! I get it. What's life without living in the moment and taking chances? Why let test anxiety represent not just school failure, but the ultimate fear of failing at life? Why the hell am I wasting time being such a baby, forever looking backwards and ignoring the beauty of the present? Time to buck up, Holan. Get up and get moving!


Procrastination is a huge waste of time. But yet... there is something comforting in being pressed uncomfortably against a deadline. I've gotten accustomed to working well under pressure. Call it a defense mechanism, but hey, it's gotten me this far.

Once I find some coffee, it's business time, baby.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Oh, bother...

There are lots of things that bother me: Squirrels. People who eat crunchy food in a quiet room. Scrunchies. Odd numbers. The words 'squat' and 'munch'. The list goes on and if I were to exhaust it, I'd most likely fall into a fit of manic self-analysis. No thanks. Lately, I've only been noticing the things that bother me about myself. Where did all of this super self-criticism come from? That was rhetorical because, believe you me, I know EXACTLY where it came from.

Top 5 Culprits:

1. Mirrors
2. Books on dating advice for women
3. Singleness
4. Men (or my ideas of them)
5. Seeing people I knew in high school

My stupid, freaking, constant inner dialogue takes all of these and uses them to fuel it's bitter tirades. I'm too pale/fat/short/bossy/stupid/overwhelming/annoying et cetera, et cetera, et cetera. This isn't self-deprication - this is honestly what runs through my head on a constant loop. The volume varies depending on where I am, or who I am with. The longer I'm alone, the worse it gets. If there are no distractions or people in my midst, my inner idiot uses these to reinforce all the self blame and hatred. It's really depressing if you think about it. And I know I'm not the only one who does this. And I also know that most of the inner dialogue I entertain is maladaptive, distracting and most importantly, exaggerated. I am aware that I'm not as horrible as my conscious claims. I have my faults of course, but if I truly embodied the traits my mind thinks I have, I'd be living in a remote hermit colony in some distant cave. Or I'd be clinically insane. I'm not sure which would be worse.

Moral of the blog is, don't always trust your inner critic. It usually doesn't have a healthy perspective, nor does it display the real truth. It serves a purpose on some level, but unless it's helping you be a better person to yourself and those around you, it should be listened to with uber massive filters.

"The Bible tells us to love our neighbors, and also to love our enemies; probably because they are generally the same people." ~G.K. Chesterton

Monday, April 6, 2009

Bunnies and Loneliness.

I have never made the connection between bunnies and loneliness until today...

Today at work I processed a book called 'Emmaline' or something. It was a kid's book about a little girl who finds a gray bunny and tries to keep him. She tells him, "If you let me, I'll take care of you and protect you forever." This girl doesn't have any friends - at least no human ones. After looking at that I laughed, then immediately thought of John Steinbeck's 'Of Mice and Men' which then made me think of the Bugs Bunny cartoon where he meets the Abominable Snowman (that was a long-ass sentence). In both the book and cartoon, there is a lonely, unique creature who finds comfort in a furry companion. They both make promises to take care of them... if only the little bunnies don't leave them all alone.

Are bunnies drawn to lonely people?

If that wasn't enough weirdness, I recently read a book that has bunnies, the Abominable Snowman, loneliness, and Jesus. It was a fictional comedy by Christopher Moore about the part of Jesus' life that's not in the Bible (i.e. his teenage, young adult years). Jesus goes to train with some Buddhist monks in India (did I say this was fiction?) when he encounters the Abominable Snowman. Jesus takes an instant liking to the lonely guy, and befriends him. He keeps him company until the creature dies. The book highlighted the idea that both Jesus and the Snowman were experiencing the loneliness that comes with being one-of-a-kind. Where are the bunnies, you ask? Just wait. Later on in the book, Jesus is chillin' after turning water into wine, when this little girl hands him a fluffy white rabbit. Jesus gently takes the animal and is fascinated with its vulnerability and softness. He carries it around for awhile, being comforted by it and keeping it safe.

What is with the bunnies and the loneliness??? Bunnies represent new life and springtime, but how does that connect with lonely people? I can't figure it out! It's so weird.

Perhaps I'll just chalk it up to coincidence and go back to reading my 'Neverwhere' book. Because that makes total sense (not).

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Fortunes of Candlelight

I got a fortune cookie last week. I don't like the cookie part - I imagine they taste an awful lot like a cereal box would if you were so inclined to chew on one. Though I don't like to eat fortune cookies, I will bite them just so I can get the ever-so-helpful words of wisdom that are supposed to be inside. Most of the time I don't get anything other than a laugh when I read them, and that's only because I add "in bed" to the end of them (I am totally, like, mature and stuff). I once got a fortune that read:
"You will get a fortune cookie." Uh, ya think?

My fortune cookie last week read:

"It is better to light one small candle than to curse the darkness."

My first thought was, "What the hell does that even mean?" So I pocketed it to ask someone about it later. That night I gave to my little brother and asked him to read it out loud. He did, and when I asked him what it meant he simply said, "You should light 2 big candles, not just one little one."

Hmmm... he has a point.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Justification Station

I realized that I hadn't updated my blog in 6 months. Holy crap. While I would like to start new and fresh with a long entry, I have to write a paper instead. So, I'm posting old stuff until I can get around to writing for realz.

Just thought you should know that I'm airing laundry from last year that has been long gone. Go ahead and have a look at the clutter and mush otherwise known as my brain, circa 2008.