Saturday, June 4, 2011

MOIST. And then a diatribe.

After a long day of doing a lot of nothing and then going out for dinner and movie with Jer, I have decided to accept the challenge posed by Lee when I posted the rules for this challenge:

Start a legitimate short story thusly:


It's your choice whether that's in quotes or not. Go.

Moist. That was the only word I could think of to adequately describe the way the room looked.  My big brother and his fiancĂ©e had just finished painting the first room in their house, and it was an uncomfortable shade of blue- the kind that made you feel squidgy inside and this effect was made worse by the fact that A) the ceiling was the exact same shade of blue and B) there was thick, squidgy-blue shag carpeting below my feet.
"The carpet was already there, so we figured... why waste such a great... retro look!" Cindy was genuinely excited about this decision.  The only part about this that could possibly crush my soul more was the look on my brother Luke's face, which illustrated nothing but total agreement with Cindy's assessment of the situation. I was hoping this was a pre-honeymoon honeymoon phase, and neither of them could possibly feel this way.  There was some kind of pheremone or hormone or chemical imbalance that made them blind to how moist everything was.  I couldn't stop wiping my hands on my sweatpants as I nodded.
"Oh, yeah.  Totally great and retro and not at all... weird." They beamed.
"It's going to be the guest room!"
"What? The GUEST room? You mean you don't want to keep this room all to yourselves?" Cindy's wide-set smile faltered then but just by the tiniest bit.
"Well. The other room is... bigger... and..."
"Calm down, I don't actually care.  And it's not like you couldn't paint YOUR room the same color, if you really wanted..."
"OH COULD WE?" She actually jumped up and down. Luke looked around, soaking up all the color.  I could see he realized what a horrible, moisty mistake that paint color had been.  He flashed Cindy a lopsided smile, the kind the girls always thought was cool or whatever but I knew meant he was hiding something.
"We'll see." He grabbed Cindy's hand. "We don't want to do ALL our remodeling at'll... you know... all look the same if we rush it and we won't have a good variety of ideas or...something" He mumbled the last part, but Cindy didn't seem to notice.
"Brilliant. You're brilliant, your brother is brilliant you know that?"
"Yeah, he's...something."  Luke winked at me- silly girls always believing whatever he said with a wink and a smile.  I did not understand anyone who fell for that.
"So, Cindy... we should probably be off.  Flowers to pick out and parties to attend and stuff."
"RIGHT YES can you believe I forgot already why you were here? Ha things just so whirlwindy around here lately..." She poked at the wall. "Oh I just LOVE this color."  My stomach lurched.
"Right. Well. I'm going to the facilities, ready to go?"
"Oh yeah sure!"
It was a week to go before the wedding and not only had Cindy used the rest of the moisty blue paint to highlight the baseboards in the upstairs bathroom, she had stuck sea animal shaped sponges in it and decorated the bathroom walls with moist octopus, moist seahorses, and moist non-descript fish.  It looked like, surrounded by all that "water" these sea animals needed a toilet worse than whoever found themselves within the bathroom to begin with.
Cindy presented the shapes and the baseboard to me as proudly as she had shown me the guest room. I felt that same squidgy uncomfortablness that I had the week before.
"Luke, why don't you just throw that paint away? It's really... terrible."
"Nah. It's not bad and anyhow she's happy. I've got the rest of my life to make her upset, I'll let her have the stupid paint until it runs out."
"Fine, alright, who am I to criticise?"
"Exactly. What kind of relationship are YOU in?"
"Oh the perfect kind. The kind that doesn't exist."
"Again. Eeeeexactly."
"But seriously. Haven't you noticed how... moist... that paint color looks?"
"Oh gross." Yeah, that word is kind of gross. but also it sounds awesome.
"Stop it!"
"Moisty moist?"
"Oh stoooop it!" He covered his ears.  Cindy arrived in the room, smiling and covered with moisty blue paint smudges.
"What is he squirming about?"
"Oh nothing. Just semantics."
"Lalalalalalala" Luke was still keeping his ears covered.
"What do you mean?" Cindy went to the sink to rinse out her paint brushes.
"Nothing. Doesn't matter.  Bathroom looks great, Cindy. I've gotta take your oaf of a fiancee out to the tuxedo store and we're going to try and make him look presentable.
"Good luck with that."

At the tuxedo rental place Luke and I got to sit, quietly, just enjoying each others' company. It felt like we hadn't seen each other in months, even though I had probably seen him more since his engagement to Cindy than I had since he moved out to go to school. And that was almost six years ago.
"are you EXCITED to get MARRIED?" I nudged him with my elbow.
"Actually, no, you know I was thinking maybe I would just do this because I'm bored or something."
"You know, I got that feeling. I didn't even think you liked girls, let alone Cindy." Actually, nothing was further from the truth.
"I don't, you know?"
"I didn't think so." There was silence for a few moments. And then--
"But seriously.  So excited."
"really? Isn't that like... the girls job?"
"Well, yeah, she's excited too, but I can't help it.  A whole life changing--two lives changing and you know, eventually, more lives because you know... babies and stuff."
"What sexual intercourse is gross?"
"SExxxxx is gross?"
"when you're having it, yes."
"And when you're having it?"
"Oh it's freakin magical. Like unicorns leaping over rainbows while butterflys burst through the sun and glitter comes out of cotton candy skies."
"Wow that's poetic. just so you know that's like... that's one of those binders you used to have when we were kids."
"Oh please you know what they're called."
"Whoa now, just because ms. Frank comma Lisa targeted a female audience doesn't mean she only appealed--"
"get your sticker book out of a bunch."
"Stickers are NOT ONLY FOR GIRLS!"
"When they're panda bears with sparkly pink eyes, I would tend to disagree."
"Excuse me, Mr. Sanders?" A tall, thin man with a measuring tape around his neck and a clipboard in his hand held out his free hand for Luke to shake.  Luke reciprocated.
"That's the colonel." I interrupted. The thin man stood up a little straighter.
"Oh, sorry, I didn't-- we'll have to be sure to include a military discount in your price quote today..." Luke was laughing.
"Please excuse her-- this is my idiotic sister who thinks fried chicken jokes are funny."
"Of course the chicken isn't funny... it's the mustache and the bolero tie that are hilarious."
"Bolero tie? I don't know if we have any in stock... ever." The two of us started laughing again. This was going to be a fantastic appointment if the man were as thick as he was acting.

The thin man was taking Luke's measurements.  He was clearly new- his hands were shaking, he kept apologizing for having to measure Luke's inseam "To which my incredibly mature and totally-old-enough-to-be-getting-married self continuously responded 'no homo', dude it's totally cool. whoa hey that's not my leg!" to which the thin man let go of the measuring tape as though it were a hot tamale, followed by the raucous laughter of both myself and Luke.
Finally, almost twice as long as it was supposed to take later, we were leaving the tuxedo shop and heading to the comic book store across the street.

Alright. I'm done working on that story, I'm not at all interested in where it's going and I'm tired and Doctor Who is on and I am not doing this challenge anywhere near properly.  I hate that I skipped yesterday, I couldn't even make it more than two days without totally fucking up a challenge that I posed to myself and I hate that.  Plus I'm not feeling well, I didn't write an article for 3dsbuzz yesterday and I feel like a total bum.  I'm probably not even going to publish this part of the writing because it's so annoying and whiney and I HATE IT. I'm so distracted and I know WHY right now, but I don't know why for yesterday and most of today.  I am so sick of feeling sick I just want to feel not sick any longer and right now writing is getting me more frustrated because I'm not even following my own rules.  I should be doing this for my own benefit and on some level, that's totally what's going on, but on another level I am frustrated that I've already busted it up and I'm not getting more feedback from the people I keep tagging and shit on facebook.  I am just tired and I have a lot of editing to get to tomorrow and I don't see why I can't just get the writing done that I need to get done.  IT's not even hard.
This is stupid.
I would much rather be writing things that are good, and not stupid and obvious and boring as fuck. I feel drained right now, angry and frustrated and tired and drained and I don't even know why.  I don't have anything to be angry about- I have a cool internship for the summer and I have places to apply for work at the mall and it's all going to be okay, but in this period where I don't know what's coming next or where we're going to be moving to... everything seems to be in flux except for one or two things and those are like... gimmies not even things I need to worry about.
I need to know where we're going to be living and when we can move there, how I'm going to get a new car and whether or not I'm going to need to register for parking on campus or get a metro card that lets me take the train every day.
Plus, I need to plan better for this challenge for next week.  This week was a dry-run and I guess it's only to be expected that I totally messed it up, but I really wish I could do ONE thing right on the first go.  i don't tend to be able to do things right on the first go.  That. Makes. Me. Bonkers.
You know what's even worse is that I'm the one controlling what words go onto this page or whatever and I can't even muster up some good words for my own sake.  IM THE CAPTAIN OF MY SHIP AND IM TOTALLY DRIVING US INTO THE ICEBERG THAT'S GOING TO CAUSE OUR DOWNFALL.
Truer words have never been written.
I'm exhausted.  I'm hoping that tomorrow's post will be better planed.  I'm going to try and do a round-up tomorrow, finish my penalty for not writing yesterday, and then re-build the challenge based on what's working and what isn't.  I think pushing myself to write for an hour each day is definitely working, it's got the muscles exercising and keeps me from sitting on my ass and doing nothing with my ENTIRE day.

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