What happens in Tulsa stays in Tulsa:
This weekend was Nate and Jen’s wedding. We all had been eagerly awaiting the fun to be had, but I don’t think any of us had any idea exactly just how much fun there was going to be. I might have to call in to work depressed tomorrow just because it won’t be Saturday night again.
The highlights I remember:
Greg acting out in great detail the magic and the horror that is The ABC of Sex-Ed for Trainables. I must own this. Trust me, you must own this too.
Before the wedding even started, Jon tapped me on the shoulder to ask if I had “any toys in my purse.” Then, right after they said their vows and everyone was all misty, he leaned in and whispered in my ear, “Did you hear that Sinbad has a new movie coming out?”
Matt Clayton was on the groom’s cake. A picture of Matt Clayton. That’s all. Sidenote: Matt Clayton does a flawless Tia Carrere impression.
Brian’s best man toast began with “PEOPLE OF EARTH!” Then he went over to the lady cutting the cake and said, “Could you cut me some of that guy’s face?”
I’m not allowed to tell how I know, or what I know, but let’s just say that I now know what happens in Season 3 of Smallville. And he was really cute.
Also at the wedding was a dikini child that could look straight into your soul and then write your sins in the book of life with its golden-quilled pen. It was wearing recyclable pants.
Evidently when one Unnamed Person was making out with another Unnamed Person after the reception, she whispered in his ear, “What happens in Tulsa stays in Tulsa.” Sister, you have no idea.
Any night that turns into a drunken pool party is a good night. Any drunken pool party that includes Jon in the pool still wearing his suit and tie and shoes and eating Doritos is a great drunken pool party.
Also, there was a bat that kept doing fly-bys.
I’m pretty sure Mat saved me from drowning at least five times, and not because I’m a bad swimmer, but because it’s hard to swim and hold your drink aloft at the same time.
I will forever love Kelly and Erin for immediately knowing exactly what I meant when I said, “Hey, let’s play mermaid hair!”
I will forever love Joe Witt for holding my purse and bra and wet swimsuit while I laid in the hammock and recited the entire “breathe deep” part of “Nights in White Satin.”
Mat and I whispered like little kids at a slumber party while we fell asleep. Well, more like two little kids who had been drinking since 2 pm. I distinctly remember talking about sharks and lasers and arguing about who was going to get up and change the thermostat.
Over breakfast, it was suggested that we are quite possibly hitting our golden age right now. I believe it. We’re at the top of our game, we’ve got a solid group, and I really think we can take it all the way to state.
If you didn’t wake up Sunday morning with curly chlorinated hair in someone else’s boxer shorts and G’n’F’n’R shirt, still wearing your party shoes, then my friend, your Saturday night was lacking.
You’ve been so very patient:
Earlier today I was thinking about how I’m really dorky and think about sex a lot, and there’s a part of me that could be really content just sitting inside and reading comic books and playing video games and eating pizza, so maybe deep down inside I’m really just a 13 year old boy, but then I thought about how I secretly want to be a princess and really enjoy smelling good, so I’ve come to the conclusion that deep down inside, I’m really just a homosexual 13 year old boy.
If someone calls you and says, “Want to go to the hospital and look at sick people?” and you say no, and then they say, “Want to go to the drive-in then?”, you should say yes, because there is nothing better than the drive-in in a convertible with a bottle of wine on a summer night, even if someone can’t manage to get their Swedish-precision-engineered car to manually tune in the radio station, or turn off the headlights but still leave the motor running, because then you’ll both just say, “Fuck it, let’s drink,” and that person might be concerned about the cops coming up to the car, to which you will exclaim, “We’re drinking merlot in a Saab at the drive-in! We may as well be reading The New Yorker!”
However, after the second bottle of wine, I was pretty sure that The Hulk was being shown in black and white, and I’ve yet to be convinced otherwise. Then we ended up at the Byrnes’, where everyone is always glad you came, and evidently I called someone’s father in London, but at that point the evening gets a little fuzzy for me, although I vaguely recall being slapped on my patio.
Want to read about my weekend told by someone a lot cooler and using code names? Of course you do.
Order of the Dorknik:
So after a few beers last night at the bar, when Mat’s girlfriend Julie mentioned they were going to the bookstore at midnight to get the new Harry Potter book, this suddenly seemed like THE BEST IDEA EVER.
I didn’t technically get the book. Evidently you had to be on a list or something. I figured that since this was the biggest printing in the history of mankind, I might be able to scrape one up, but no dice. It was still really fun, though. It was always a dream of mine as kid to get locked in the library or bookstore overnight, so being there at 1 am was kind of a thrill.
I wanted to grab all these little kids running around with fake scars and glasses and robes and say, Do you realize how laid this is going to get you in ten years when your college girlfriend finds out you entered the Harry Potter lookalike contest the night the fifth book came out and she goes awwwwww? The winner was ten years old and totally had hearing aids. I wanted to hug him.
I also witnessed the best exchange ever while standing in line. This chubby little kid wearing what was obviously a brown Jedi robe, not a wizard robe, was reading “Garfield Beefs Up” when this tough-looking little mini-thug wearing a gold chain and track pants and a bandana came up to him.
Mini-thug: What you readin’?
Jedi kid: (not even looking up): Garfield. You like him?
Mini-thug: He cool.
Then the mini-thug picked up a copy of the same Garfield book and they stood there together, reading, crossing lines Fox and the Hound-style, and I wish I could have taken their picture.
There were all these costumed kids and awkward preteens and their parents, plus this one guy wearing a shirt that was made entirely out of Source magazine covers, and I got all misty and turned to Mat and said, “You know, if I die right now, I will die among MY PEOPLE.”
Some forever not for better:
I’m horrible with endings. I always have been. I hate leaving things behind. When I was a little girl, I’d scour hotel rooms before we checked out, making sure I had every rubber band and every crayon. I couldn’t bear to think that I’d left a part of me somewhere that I couldn’t return, and that I’d never see it again.
I’ve always had a difficult time letting go of people as well. For all my affected cynicism, I’m sort of naïve when it comes human interaction—if I’ve had a positive, close relationship with someone in the past, part of me expects that to always stay the same, regardless of what else happens. I don’t have any interest in holding grudges or staying bitter, but I do try to distance myself from situations turned sour, even though I always keep that little tiny bit of hope alive. Sometimes I’m seized with that feeling when I’m in a good mood or driving down the street and a song comes on, and I suddenly want to reach out to someone who’s no longer around and say, “Oh, remember this? Remember that? This is so silly, why can’t we be friends like we used to?”
But you can’t control whether or not someone else still wants to know you, and with some people, I guess that’s probably for the best. That’s where I feel silly though, because once someone has made a big enough impact on my life for me to consider them part of my inner circle, they never really leave my heart. The past year has seen some people go out of my life that used to play a large part in it. For whatever reasons these changes came about, whether it was for the best, or my decision, or completely out of my hands, it doesn’t change the fact that I still think about them, and miss them. Sometimes I don’t miss them being a part of my life, or sometimes I only miss the good parts, but I always miss knowing them.
I have no idea if people still think of me this way too, or if they have the ability to move on and not look back. I don’t think I’d want that ability even if I could have it, though. If that makes me naïve, so be it. Working up a callus to people you used to treasure takes energy I can’t spare.
The Midnight Cremation of Sam McGee:
Despite my English degree, I don’t claim to know anything about poetry. That doesn’t mean I don’t like it; I like a lot of poems because of how they make me feel when I read them, but I don’t really understand why or how, and I would never attempt to make one myself. You know, probably like how some men feel about women. Anyway, I know that I hate Wordsworth and I like Yeats, but that’s about it.
So here are my five favorite poems. One is even by e.e. cummings. Go ahead and make fun of me all you want, but please remember that today I talked about poetry when tomorrow I’m posting pictures of girls kissing.
The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock, by T. S. Eliot
Epistle to Be Left in the Earth, by Archibald MacLeish
Curfew, by Paul Eluard*
i like my body when it is with your body, by e.e. cummings
Fable of the Mermaid and the Drunks, by Pablo Neruda
*This is the one I was searching for last night. The first time I ever read this poem, my high school boyfriend copied it out of a library book and gave it to me. I lost the piece of paper years later, and couldn’t remember the author. This version is different from the version I first read, like it’s been translated. I don’t understand how you can translate a poem from another language and have it still be a poem, or at least the same poem. Anyway, here’s the version I first read:
So what the doors were guarded,
So what we were imprisoned there,
So what the streets were barracaded,
So what the town was asleep,
So what she was starving,
So what we were unarmed,
So what night had fallen,
So what we made love.
If you can tell me a better way to spend a late Tuesday summer night than in a bubble bath with a beer and a book and a new mix CD, and then climbing out and putting on your ex-boyfriend’s T-shirt and climbing into a bed with fresh sheets with your hair still wet, I would love to hear it.
Just for the record, I’m not always out cavorting and carousing. Like last night, when I went to dinner with my mom and then we saw “Finding Nemo,” and then I came home and did a load of laundry, and looked up my favorite poem on the internet, and then I brushed my teeth and went to bed and had a dream where the cutest boy I know was making me bacon and eggs and I was just wearing solid gold high heels and lots of gold eyeshadow.
For the love of God, is she ever going to shut up about her birthday?
I am really in no state to be forming words, especially words posted for all the world to read, but if I get up from this chair I’ll have to start cleaning up all the bottles and cans and cups that are covering every square inch of my apartment right now, and I’m not ready to do that just yet. Seriously, I had no idea I had so many surfaces that could be covered with bottles and cans and cups, but this place seems to have been conquered in the name of Harp and Newcastle and Corona. And limes. I have never in my whole entire life seen so many limes as the ones that are in my kitchen sink at this moment.
My drunken co-ed slumber party last night was exactly that, times eleven. I have never had so much fun in my life. There were no less than two games of Spin the Bottle, one with everyone in a huge circle, and another at 4 am with a select group in a dark corner. There were more people on my balcony than was practical or safe. There was breakdancing. There was a birthday cake that read “25 II.” There were peaches marinated in vodka. There was an impromptu singalong to “Suzanne.” There was kissing of people’s younger brothers that used to be babysat. There was a Benjamin Franklin action figure and a Tiki god and iron-on panties. There were soooo many cute boys. There was a whole fucking lot of tequila. I spent the evening liberally applying my Mary-Kate and Ashley lip gloss to whomever I was talking to at the moment, and at one point there was a sort of clothed orgy on my bed and I think someone got to second base with me while someone else’s hand was on my ass and I was whispering to a third person altogether, so I’m pretty sure it could be scientifically proven that it was the best party ever.
I took pictures pictures pictures and more pictures. I took pictures of girls kissing. I took pictures of boys kissing. I took pictures of everyone passed out. I took pictures of myself in bed. I took pictures of my bedmate. I took a whole roll of pictures I don’t even remember taking. I can’t wait to get them developed tomorrow. Maybe I’ll share some with you, darling internet. Until then, I have some bottles and limes to deal with.
So, my birthday.
I’m going to have to say that 25 Part II is already my best year yet, and the birthday itself definitely set the tone. It began with the Flaming Lips singing in my ear and ended with me belting out “Me and Bobby McGee” to forty of my dearest friends, many of whom I had just met that night. (Moniqua, call me, girl! Vaguely Mediterranean middle-aged man who bought me shots while I did karaoke, let’s get lunch!)
Some highlights include:
- Being the belle of Brian’s tattoo.
- Laser Tag with Brian, Steve, and my brother. My brother and I chose code names in honor of our beloved No Shirt Cousins, so I was Travis and he was Cason, only the Laser Tag guy accidentally entered it as “Tason,” which is now my brother’s new nickname until death.
- Steve was wearing the most awesome shirt that simply and inexplicably read KURT LODER, which was naturally his Laser Tag code name, and it made the points-reading ceremony at the end that much better: “White Cheetah, 100. Nightmare, 95. Slayer, 70. Nitro, 65. Kurt Loder, 50.”
- Being cornered in the Laser Tag maze by two little 13 year old boys who just kept shooting me, waiting for my sensors to reactivate, and then shooting me again, and then ambushing them later with my colleagues Tason and Kurt Loder, while they yelled in cracking voices, “Hey, you can’t do that! We took an OATH!”
- HAMSTERS ALL KINDS.
- Big Daddy, which was really just kind of a letdown. Perhaps if the two could have been combined somehow, it would be another story.
- Dinner with my family, where my dad told the same story he tells on every one of my birthdays, which always ends with “… and you were born with eyes like chrome, like the color of a bumper on a ‘57 Buick.” Then, like every year, he launched into “The Streets of Laredo,” the first song he ever sang to me.
- The best fortune cookie fortune I have ever received.
- Karaoke at Lennie’s. Lennie’s is located inside a hotel and everything inside is covered with either mirrors or red leather, so you know it’s good.
- I pledged to be drunk enough to sing both the Elton John and Kiki Dee parts of “Don’t Go Breakin’ My Heart.” They didn’t have it on the list, but I kept up my end of the deal anyway.
- Evidently Brian has been hiding his flawless rendition of “Folsom Prison Blues” from us for all these years. It was just unreal.
- Steve and I going straight into “Where Did Our Love Go?” after our “Tainted Love” duet, despite the fact that the song was over and there was no music to back it up.
- All the shots from strangers at the bar, including the one handed to me while Erin and I were in the middle of “You’re So Vain,” which I downed without dropping my microphone or missing a word.
- The mail-order bride bartender ordering everyone’s ass on the dance floor during her Britney Spears cover.
- The DJ calling out “Erin, Kelly and Sarah?” but Erin and Kelly had already left, so without a word, Jon and Steve went right up there with me and sang “Leader of the Pack.” Jon used this time with the microphone to hit on the lucky ladies seated at the bar, but Steve made the motorcycle noises like a trooper.
- Slow dancing like it was 1989.
- There was a conga line. I think. I was pretty drunk by that point, so I might need confirmation on that one.
- Steve and I finally making our exit at 2 am to “Sexy Motherfucker” while everyone left in the bar yelled goodnight, using our first names.
- Being driven home in the pouring rain with one last duet to Don Henley’s “Boys of Summer.”
- You know, there’s just nothing like waking up still wearing your heels.
Yeah, I know, bulletpoints again. Mama’s still a little hungover and she needs to recuperate in time for her coed slumber party this weekend, so be a peach and humor her.
So far this is the best birthday ever, because less than two minutes into it, THE FLAMING LIPS CALLED ME AND SANG HAPPY BIRTHDAY.
I’m off to play laser tag now. Internet, I love you!
My weekend in bulletpoints
My weekend in the second person
Alternate alternate title:
I’m a hack
- Don’t see “The Italian Job.”
- No, for real. Don’t.
- If you must, go see it with Tony, because he will stage whisper, “I have a feeling the whole movie has been building to THIS POINT,” during the chase scene.
- Waking up Saturday morning and being physically unable to do anything but lie on the couch and watch “3 Ninjas.”
- Playing Four Square Categories with people aged 9-11, and hearing these answers thrown out when the category is Adjectives that describe Sarah:
“Good at reading!”
“Not that tall!”
“Bad at math!”
And then having to stop the game when the next answer shouted was
“Good at swallowing!”
- Party at the Byrnes’, which meant Yatta and kabobs and Biggest Game of Whorse Ever, as well as sitting around the table, passing the Breathalyzer from person to person, and when Aaron was officially .04 drunker than Brian, DeKinder yelling, “The King is dead! Long live the King!”, and then your phone ringing and it’s your ex-boyfriend whom you haven’t spoken to in nine months, so you go sit on the bathroom floor and talk for an hour and then go climb in bed with the naked hostess to analyze the previous 60 minutes.
- Giving an impromptu and completely detailed rundown of your love life for the past year and a half in the ice cream section of the grocery store at 6 o’ clock on a Sunday.
- Opening an artery while shaving your legs.
- The phone, the phone, the phone.
- Learning a disturbing new use for goosegrease.
- Coining the phrase “truck stop salad toss.”
- Convincing people to call in sick on Tuesday since you just learned you get your birthday off work.
- People actually agreeing to call in sick on Tuesday.
- For the love of God, the phone.
I’m now running twice as far and twice as much as I was just a few weeks ago. As a result, I can now easily remove several pairs of my pants without actually unzipping or unbuttoning them. While this makes for a fun party trick, I guess I should probably invest in an interim belt of some kind.
The things that you do will always make your mama cry:
Last week, my sweet baby brother graduated from high school. He’s obviously no longer a baby, and sometimes he isn’t very sweet, but he’s the one person on the planet whose genes are closest to mine, and sometimes that just boggles my mind. I’ve mentioned my brother briefly here a couple times before: we have very little in common, aside from the fact that we came from the same parents and laugh at the same things. He is athletic and active and has red hair. I can sometimes run in a semi-straight line, and everything about me is dark—hair, humor, soul. I spent most of my formative years in a library, and he spent most of his in emergency rooms. Sometimes we communicate via raised eyebrows and non-words, but this mostly works in family situations. If we were strangers in the outside world, the odds of us ever meeting would be sliver-thin.
That being said, he is one of my very favorite people on the planet. We’re almost seven years apart, and I was overjoyed when he was born. I wanted a brother desperately. I knew I didn’t want a sister, although I’m not really sure why, and I knew that more than anything, I was tired of being alone in the backseat all the time. I think my parents finally just had him so I’d quit spending dinnertime playing my favorite game: “Who could sit in our empty fourth chair? Grandma? The dog? Mr. Glenn from next door? A BABY BROTHER?”
Growing up, he was the best sidekick ever. He would follow me around and draw me pictures and make me birthday crowns out of construction paper. He was constantly in costume and always game to play any part in whatever scheme I made up.
When I was seventeen, I found out on Valentine’s Day that my high school boyfriend was cheating on me, and my little brother heard me crying in my room and asked me what was wrong. I told him, and he left, and returned a few minutes later with a heart-shaped candy box filled with tissue paper. Inside was a fake gold bracelet that you’d win playing skee-ball. He had tried to give it to his second grade sweetheart earlier that day and she’d spurned him, in front of all her friends. It remains to this day the sweetest present anyone has ever given me. He’s a lover and a fighter, though: he attempted to beat up my ex-boyfriend—more than twice his age and size—that summer at the swimming pool, and when the lifeguard made him sit out, I brought him a snowcone and we sat together, silently commiserating in the unfairness of life.
When he was fourteen, my brother accidentally ran through a plate glass door at a party. The door wasn’t made of safety glass, and a huge shard the size of a butcher knife had gone into his side and shattered into a billion pieces when it hit his backbone. After several emergency surgeries and MRIs and CAT scans and months spent in the hospital—including a bout of E. coli meningitis that almost killed him—they removed almost all of the glass, but there are still four pieces stuck in between his lower disks. He went from bedridden to a wheelchair to a walker to a cane to a backbrace within months, and after almost a year of physical therapy, he managed to go back to doing his favorite thing in the world: playing baseball. I’m not trying to be corny or tug on your heartstrings by telling you this part, but I admire my little brother so much for overcoming all of this. I know I never could have done it.
Anyway, he isn’t all sweetness and heroism. He’s also been a teenager, and a perfectly rotten one, and that was kind of fun for me, since I didn’t live at home while it happened, and it made my own moody teen years look golden. But now that he’s finished with high school and headed to college, I’m suddenly hit with this weird old aunt syndrome, where I just look at him and my eyes get all wet and I say things like, “Just the other day you were playing ninjas in the laundry room!”, to which he rolls his eyes and goes in the other room to watch TV. Last night after his graduation barbecue, he snapped at my parents, grunted a goodbye in my general direction, and slammed the front door. But less than a minute later, he came back inside and hugged me without saying a word.
I am so glad I know him.
Check out my ode to an old friend in the June issue of The Plug. Includes hot pictures of my 15 year old torso! I also gave some work evasion tips, making this more than just a cameo: it’s a guest appearance. Mr. Carlson, next time I expect a star on my door and Cristal and white gardenias waiting within.
People all over the world:
Without fail, the scene at the end of The Last Days of Disco where Chloe Sevigny and Matt Keeslar dance on the subway to “Love Train” makes me inexplicably happy.