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Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Storytelling: rising action

 Note: this post was originally written on February 9th, but I put it on hold until I could add a little extra. Sorry, this post had been shelved so long.

Another week, another snow day (two actually). Being home gives me time to reflect and remember and put what I think are really deep thoughts on the Internet. Sometimes I avoid it and blogging gets lost in with my other daily activities.
 Continued from here...
 ...and again here.
Where I last left this hanging, it was the beginning of 2013. I had left WAW behind in the previous month, but couldn't shake the pain. My relationship with Mike/Falcon had started as casual but was starting to look like an actual relationship, and for that I was grateful. I managed to get on the bad side of the WAW girlfriends, who asserted their power over me -the former Queen Bee- through their boyfriends, essentially ending any involvement with the promotion for the time. Falcon was a great source of pride to me. Falcon, the WAW Champion, well liked by all and respected for his talent; he was with me. 
One of the few highlights of my life was the visits from my "not really boyfriend." Usually Wednesday, one of his nights off from work, was our date night. I would leave school and rush home to meet him and it felt amazing. We had a weekly ritual, one that was perfect for a school night.
I remember taking that picture on my phone to capture the happiness. On the left, macaroni and cheese from a place that makes specialty mac and cheese, a bottle of Coke because he loves Coke, and a DVD of the first season of the best show ever: Game of Thrones.
After going to Mr. Mac's once, he wanted to go back often and I happily obliged because it's freaking delicious. We ate this awesome dinner on my couch as we watched an episode of our show before the best part of the night; getting in bed with him.
Falcon worked the overnight shift, and it wasn't exactly nearby. So, while I had him on Wednesdays, Fridays I spent alone, as with the rest of my days. My depression wasn't a quiet one. I had frequent crying fits and I scared myself worrying about what was going to happen to me. I didn't think what I had with this man was serious enough to make him suffer with me, nor did I want to grow too attached so someone who was supposed to be just a fling. Before Falcon grew weary of my mental state, I thought I should give him an out.
It would have been best if I made him leave then, but kicking the habit was easier said than done. I remember telling him to go; telling him that I needed someone who could love me, but that person wasn't him. I told him we couldn't see each other, while proverbially clinging to his presence.
On an early April evening, I sipped a cocktail alone, lamenting my Saturday night sadness. I chatted on Facebook messenger with John and remember some of the conversation. I said, "I had to let the champ (Falcon) go.  He doesn't like me enough. Someone loved me once, so someone can love me again." John asked me where he was and I said that he was "enjoying the wrestling show we built for him." We shared LOLs and John said, "good for you," in regards to my strength in dropping my partner. I told him Falcon was currently texting me to check in and saying he was going to stop by after the show. I drunkenly said that I would send him away and tell him to go ride the boat with Ben Affleck (it's a reference to this old educational show set in Falcon's hometown).
John said that I shouldn't! He said that if Falcon wanted to be there for me, I should let him help me. John approved of Falcon and said I should let him in. (Was this foreshadowing? Yes.) So, I opened the door, and my stupid heart.
It was good that I did, because I was going to need him. Maybe John had known that ahead of time, because soon after that night; this happened. My closest confidant and former boyfriend hurt me like no one else ever had. John was gone, taking his support, the belief I had in myself, and all my happy memories with him. So, whether holding onto Falcon was right or not, it was necessary for my survival.
So, what was I getting myself into? Who is Falcon, or Michael?
It is important to remember that in the dark parts of my mind, I reminded myself this man was no good for any woman; but he sure did a good job in making me forget it. I felt I was able to be my absolute true self around him, and be honest in all my horrible thoughts and feelings. I felt comfortable enough to make a literary comparison of him. I was reminded of:
Title character from Mozart's opera Don Giovanni
Not sure if my reference is too pretentious, but surely I am not the only one who took fine arts/humanities courses in college and remembers this famous opera. Here's a synopsis from it, the way I recall: Don Giovanni is an infamous womanizer making one conquest after another. He creates all sorts of chaos in the lives of those he hurt. One of these woman, Donna Elvira, says she no longer hates him and urges him to change his ways. Giovanni is like, "nope, I'm a narcissist, I'll never get my comeuppance!" Then, the ground opens up and he gets dragged into the fiery pits of hell.
I am in no way saying that Falcon is on a highway to hell nor am I proclaiming him "evil." I'm using the limited knowledge I have to make sense of him; to understand.I'm pretty sure what makes him tick is not pure evil.
What Falcon and Mozart's anti-hero have in common is their desire to seduce any woman in their path. For Falcon, this was not hard to do. Once he cast that spell on me, I was drawn in like a magnet. I thought he was amazing and he thought he was amazing too. He had a hubris about him, flaunting conventional love/sex rules because he knew he could.
Unlike Don Giovanni, Falcon doesn't just "love" 'em and leave 'em. In my case, he really made the effort to show his affection and in his way, loyalty. During the spring and summer of 2013, we talked everyday and he drove the distance to be with me whenever possible. While the world outside my home was a frightening city of tears, I was more than happy to welcome Falcon into my apartment where he helped me feel safe and cared for. During this time, we formed a close bond and a series of routines all of which lulled me into a feeling of safety and trust.
He loved my crafty side and encouraged me to create, which I often did just for him.
Shirt I made using the freezer paper stencil technique. This is sort of based on the art piece.
He was so good to me, that it was easy to forget what I knew to be true about him. I just wanted to enjoy the moments I had with him and not worry too much about what could wrong. The best part of that summer was getting the chance to do many of the things I didn't do the year before. Like, enjoy life. The memories are still so clear. We drove up north in NH on a beautiful day and played in the shallow rocky swimming areas of the Saco river, before walking the streets of the little town. We went to Hampton Beach and strolled the boardwalk of tacky shops and jumped into the freezing-ass ocean waves. I spent the day in his hometown; we attended his sister's high school graduation and took a quick walk on a beach. While driving through Gloucester, I thought it was so beautiful.
Also, we went rollerskating. There are so few roller skating rinks left, but we are lucky enough to have one pretty close. I was pretty damn good on wheels, as a child, and Falcon was mostly good at any kind of physical activity (eye roll).
Here's an incredible skate-holding bag featuring the name of said skating place. I did not buy that bag, as the thrift store wanted $25.
I had so much fun doing things like that with him. Sometimes, I lay in bed and I remember being wrapped in his arms and long to have that feeling again.
Up next; the conclusion.

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

I don't have to explain myself! Late V Day

It's been over a week since I started writing the third part of my last story and I'm almost done, but oops, I seem to have fallen behind. As usual. Valentine's Day was days ago, so I figured that now would be a good time to share some red and pink crap. The post itself reflects the hasty, last-minute hurried feeling I get sometimes. Too many little chores; blogging/writing takes a back seat.
I'm behind as hell and don't feel like explaining myself, dammit.
On Thursday of last week, I knew I had put it off long enough and had to redo my hair color, but before that I threw together some half-assed outfit ideas that might be considered no-sew restyles. I had this skirt that I had already photographed awhile ago...
It was months ago, and I don't remember why I have it or why I used the dress form for the "before" shot. It's a large stretchy skirt with useless buttons and tiny pink polka dots. Tiny pink polka dots, despite being a color I don't wear are considered acceptable because they have a certain retro kitsch value.
I digress. Anyway, I did the usual "pull the skirt up over boobs" trick and then to make it a little more fitted, I added two safety pins to create darts in the bodice section.
Do you see them? You see how I added safety pins? Not that there is much daylight around here anyway, but it was totally nighttime when I took these pics. I hid the pins with a sash and added more layers, plus a heart shaped necklace.
The tired, thrown together me that was captured here could only be saved with some heavy photo editing. 
This following thing is really just a sweater I love and have had for many a Valentine's of yesteryear. It's somewhat ill-fitting and there wasn't much I could do.
Ugh, no to everything. I tried to add "pops" of red with the belt and shoes to bring out the sweater's design. Pencil skirt's too small and I look super mad about it. I did have to shorten that elastic belt, though. 
My sweater with the gorgeous sacred heart embroidered on:
I bought it when I was much younger and badass-ier. Love the sacred heart image and if I weren't so wishy washy, I'd have got something like that for a tattoo while younger and badass-er. The sweater came from an alternative indie clothing store (do people still use words like that?) in Cambridge, MA and probably cost a fortune. 
Finally...this goddamn adorable cat print dress. It's sheer black with more tiny pink polka dots and retro style kitties on it. I got it a few years back at Savers, I believe. It's a small junior's size. It has a weird fit at the sides and two stupid strings at boob level.
Lolwut. What are these? Am I wearing it wrong? Don't answer, I know what's wrong; I'm not a size 3 teen. But, seriously, why pointy hips? 
I don't really know what to do, but for the sake of getting this shit done, I started by cutting off those strings. Then I added a different red waist cinching belt to hopefully fix the "hang" of this dress or at least draw the eye towards the middle. 
This pose is like, "What's that? Damn right I matched red and pink and you added some big-ass fake pearls. Think it's tacky?"
Come at me, bro*
*Any time I see someone posed with arms outstretched, I'm reminded of the old meme phrase which translates into "approach and we shall engage in fisticuffs."

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

A Valentine's Day no-sew

Pardon the interruption from story time, but I wanted to get at least one Valentine's Day outfit posted before the actual holiday.
I actually planned to do several outfits on that theme, specifically for the non-romantics like myself. I also have a hard time wearing red and wanted to show some alternatives to V day outfits without too much of that color.
Guess what else I planned? I had the idea to do a series of "no-sew" refashions for the month. So far, they've mostly been fails. Here's one for both themes that kinda works.
 Eww. It's not even silly ugly. Why do I look even shorter than usual? If you can't tell, it's a plaid print and it features red, but not too much. Red usually doesn't jive with my particular hair color. I'm coloring tomorrow, so it's all toned down for these. Also, it never looks good with my lipstick. Maybe it does, I don't know.
This dress is actually a lightweight material, so it should be easy to work with and might come in handy in the spring. Anyway, how can I make it work without sewing?
That thing. It's an elastic piece with clips on each end. I'm gonna use that thing to gather it in the back.
It might take a little practice getting it straight. I recommend doing what I did and putting the dress on backwards and clipping it in front before turning it around. Let's see:
So, now it fits a little better. Obviously, there are many other ways to make this dress look better, but I was going for fast and simple. Something that says "meh...it's wearable." I figured I could add a sash. Here's the after:
Certain filters make the red tones stand out more. Doesn't my dress look so adequate?

There ya go, it's reddish and it's a no sew. Hopefully, more to come. My god, I'm bad at following through.

Thursday, February 5, 2015

More story: It begins

Like we teach in school, all stories have a beginning, middle, and end. During last week's snow days, I started my little narrative, but mostly just set up the story. It's another snow day. Here I go again.
Everything's got to be so damn dramatic...
It was a warm spring evening in 2012. At the time, I actually had a girl friend in fellow WAW Vixen, Chandra. If I correctly recall, we were hanging out in my apartment, probably listening to "Last Friday Night" by Katy Perry and staring at our cellular devices looking for something exciting to do. I cruised the Social Network and saw that Falcon (who had been out of WAW while he healed from shoulder surgery) was in town.
We had been working together before his leave, and I hadn't seen him in a while. I texted a friendly greeting, saying "cool, you're in town!" He was partying with some other wrestlers at our favorite spot, The Yee Dynasty and no, I don't remember why Chandra and I didn't just go and get our Yee on with them.
Any damn way, the significance this is: no interaction with Falcon was considered flirtatious. He was a nice, non-threatening guy and he had a girlfriend. Nothing weird about me saying hello.
Nor was it weird when he sent me a friendly chat on FaceBook Messenger several days later.
Now, I should remind anyone reading where I was at this time. I was starting my long adventure with depression; it was so fresh and new that I didn't even recognize the symptoms. I knew that I was often lonely and started to feel adrift from my world, like an island away from everyone around me. Sure I was sad, but probably no big deal...
It was nice chatting with Falcon and getting to know more about him. In fact, I soon found a whole other him: an exciting and alluring side, hidden beneath the all-American, blond, athletic boy.
Over the course of a couple weeks, our conversations turned more flirtatious in nature, and I was getting the hint that I was dealing with a man on a mission. Never one to shy away from an elephant in the room, I told him, "it seems like you're interested in more than just chatting..."
"Maybe with the right woman," he replied with a winking face emoticon. That smooth bastard. Well, consider my curiosity/interest piqued.
c-c-c-cold hearted sssnake
If you're wondering about the girlfriend, I'm not gonna lie; there was one. You don't get to where I've been (mentally) by being an angel all the time. Bad choices...I've made them. I'm sure most of you reading are pretty mad at me. Considering what I later (and am currently) went through, don't worry; the bad girl pays. There are justifications to make. This woman was having a real, scary problem with alcohol (she later crashed the comments section of part 4 of my first story. Un-deleted for authenticity). I was depressed and lonely; I wanted to make me feel better and no time to think about the happiness of a stranger. Besides, it was his job to be faithful, not mine. If it wasn't me, it would be someone else. Finally; in her drunken rages, she was becoming violent towards him.
Once his motives were revealed, I agreed to hang out with him soon after. Now, I've repeated this general rule to many MA and/or NH residents: "people do not cross state lines to 'hang out' with people who aren't close friends or family." Surely, he wasn't stopping by just for tea and crumpets.
I knew what I was getting into and I broke through the caution tape, and kicked over the red flags. So, he started making more frequent visits to my neighborhood which was where his long time best friend Chad was living. We went to a few of Chad's comedy shows, we ate Chinese food, and we did it all in secret, even once the girlfriend was safely out of the picture.
I've been trying to think of a song that describes this union, because I feel like I had one at the time. Somewhere there has to be a rock song with lyrics about knowing that something is dangerous, but doing it anyway because you can't resist the temptation. If I were performing it, I'd be singin' about the lure of playing with fire. How my sad and lonely soul craved the adrenaline rush of seeing him. I would use words like "addiction," "illicit," "danger," uh... "forbidden?'
Throughout the bizarre ups and downs of the Summer of 2012, we had the occasional good time. When he finally made his return to WAW at a special "away" show in MA, Falcon the performer was in top form. He fought his former tag team partner whom my character Moody Starr had just guided to become the champion. As the champ's manager, I tried to remain neutral to both men--the match was solid. A local promoter from a reputable wrestling promotion invited the three of us to do a show.
Summer turned to fall and in September, four of us WAWers traveled to Rhode Island to perform at a wrestling show. We all stayed at Falcon's small apartment and it was here that we went "public," so to speak. The guys shared the living room, while the host and I shared a bed. We outed ourselves as "more than friends." Not really a couple, but a thing. In November, he asked me to be his date to a family member's wedding in his hometown. It would mean getting home very late on a school night (gasp).
That's a terribly taken phone pic from that night. What it doesn't show is how we coordinated our colors in dark red. We danced and enjoyed free food and drinks. I met his mama. It was an awesome time.
Still, we weren't an official couple. I didn't know what we were and didn't much care. I was having fun and that's all I wanted. Falcon was great, but I knew; behind those eyes was a ladies' man, a "player." Why don't we have better words to describe men who are like this? He had been untruthful in his past relationships, but as long as I wasn't committed to him; I didn't have to care, as far as I was concerned. I remember telling him, "a tiger doesn't change his stripes."
For whatever reason, he sure did a good job of expressing his affections for me and the things I did. He loved my apartment full of old-timey knick knacks. He loved children and thought it was great that I did too. He thought I was beautiful and smart (duh). And he loved my creative side. In fact, he was absolutely enthralled when I presented him with a Christmas gift:
Once again, I must apologize for picture quality. I just snapped a quick shot with my phone because I didn't have a blog at the time. I made a few of those. I called them "minimalist collages." This represents both Mike and Falcon (no actual falcons included). Full tutorial of the thought process behind it will probably be my next post, but here's a hint. They're the colors of his wrestling gear, a big cat stalking his prey (a representation of how he picks up women, perhaps), and an adjective used to describe him. He fucking loved it. It's paint, paper, and Mod Podge and he treated it like a dang masterpiece. Sooo flattered.

Here's where I leave off. My storytelling isn't always planned ahead and I just write when I have time and motivation. Also, my storytelling is long and wordy. My bad. It might not be separated into equal parts because this isn't classic literature, it's a rambling blog post.
Next up: rising action; a literary comparison, and a striking similarity between the two sides of me.