Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Twenty Five Things

Yes, you're in for twenty five things you may wish you didn't know about me after I tell you what they are.  This sort of thing is a direct result of giving in to peer pressure on facebook.  And if you've been crazy enough to have followed me from the beginning you may know some of these things, but if your new to my place, this will be news and you might not respect me in the morning.

1. I'm known to the men from my past as: difficult, mean, argumentative, that know-it-all bitch, and the woman who left for no good reason.

2. I'm a terrible flirt.  I have no inhibition when it comes to telling attractive men just how attractive they are.  This means the guys at the pharmacy love to see me coming.  They remember my name. 

3. I'm a very good shot.  I've written about my history with guns.  There are two little essays in my short story collection about my early years with guns and my later years with guns.  The last time I owned a handgun I was being stalked by a discarded lover who came to my door about 2:00 AM.  He kept knocking and making a general nuisance of himself.  I got my handgun and opened the door.  I pointed it at his face and told him to get the fuck out of my life, and if he didn't, next time he came knocking on my door I'd just shoot him.  I never heard from him again. And I got rid of my gun not long after that episode.  I realized I really did want to shoot him.

4. Most of you know this, but for those who don't, I was sexually abused all through my childhood and my mother knew about it and did nothing.  This leads to all kinds of problems in later life.  I neither trust men nor women.  This also means I spend all my disposable income on therapy and psychoactive drugs.  It's this early trauma that triggered the PTSD, anxiety disorder,  agoraphobic tendencies, and may have exacerbated my bipolar disorder.  It also led to a lot of inappropriate sexual acting out.

5. I modeled almost all my life.  I have lived in small towns where there were no opportunities for a model and in those places I did things like manage a huge disco and bar where I turned a losing venture into one so successful it eventually imploded.  See the short story, Too Damn Big.

6.  The young people who worked for me in the Disco/Bar wanted me to be their Madame. Yes, it's true. I was asked to be the Madame for a bunch of very smart, talented, attractive college students wanting to make a buck and have me manage their business. I said no, but by then, at that point in my life, as the wife of a college professor living in a small college town, I knew it was time for me to get the hell out of Dodge. Scandal was a brewing.

7.  I was always athletic.  I learned to ski at five until I wrecked both knees in my forties.  I rode horses all my life. I danced. I twirled my baton and stepped high in my white tasseled boots. I tumbled. I was a softball champ in grade school.  I was the pitcher and the home-run champ.  I took fencing as a way to work off excess hostility when my third husband and I were living in Denver where he was getting his PhD.  I was skilled enough to compete, but it was my raw aggression that made me dangerous with my custom made epee.  I still have it. I imagine I could still be dangerous with my epee.  Every now and then I sharpen the edges of the blade.  I might not be able to stab anyone with the point, but I could leave some nasty cuts and welts.

8. I've had so many lovers I can't remember half of them. Shameful isn't it?  I've had three husbands.  I've left every man I ever lived with or was married to.  I'm the kind of woman who leaves.  The reasons I leave are many, but most of them are rooted in my childhood.

9.I've been writing for forty years or more.  No man I've lived with or loved in all that time was ever been willing to read anything I wrote.  I asked them to read this or that and was always told no, or maybe later, but none of them ever read a word I wrote until I was living alone and writing on this blog.

10.  I've been in therapy since I was 16.

11. I was an early admissions student at the University of Utah in 1961. I'd always loved books.  I read adult books when I was a child.  I thought it might help to know what the enemy was up to, and reading the books they read might help me understand them.  So English Lit was a breeze for me.  I'd already read those books.  I was a good reference librarian for a too brief year.  It was my favorite job. Then I got promoted to the worst job I ever had: Assistant Director for Marketing and Development of the Salt Lake County Library System.  I discovered a massive fraud.  I blew the whistle. Nobody likes a whistle blower.

11. I was incredibly passive well into my thirties.  I had no desire to marry any of the men I married, but they pursued me so aggressively I just acquiesced.  The men I married were of the generation that believed it was their birthright to be cared for by a loving and obedient woman.  I went to school, worked outside the home, kept the house clean, did the laundry, shopped and cooked, and even bought their clothes for them.  I was also a pretty passive sexual partner.  I don't mean that I just lay there like an inanimate object but I did what they wanted and I did it with the same energy I did everything else.  It just wasn't what I wanted to do.  But then, I didn't want to do the laundry either, yet I did it well.

12.  I tried every drug that came my way during the 60s.  I was a woman of my generation and I traveled.  I planned to live and die young.  I believe anything my elders told me.  I pretty much knew they were lying hypocrites. So, my motto was don't knock it if you haven't tried it.  I discovered that the only drug I took that didn't exacerbate the depression and or rage was pot.  So pot it was.  Pot it still is. 

I know I haven't got to number 25 yet, but I'm exhausted and need a nap.  I know that unless these lists are limited to a very narrow field, like jobs you've had, or favorite books, I'll say some dark and scary shit.  You might not like me after you read what I say here. You may cover your eyes and run screaming from the room.  Don't trip on the way out.  I never claimed I was going to be easy.  I quit being easy when I was 35.  I was long overdue and my rage had been simmering for a long time.

It may take me a day or two to get back to finishing this list, but I don't write about myself in an openended forum and hold back.  If you're asking about me, and I'm answering, I'll tell you what I believe to be the truth, no matter how dark that truth might be.