Boy, do I have some Tales to Tell...
Sitting in a corner in my kitchen is a large shopping bag. It's about half-full of clothes I am giving away to Housing Works. Normally, I don't care about stuff that I give away because, chances are, I have not worn it during the past year. For some reason, this bag is different. I have decided to purge some really special clothing. I guess special because they represent a huge past to me.
Okay, I'll be honest, they represent a past when I was so thin. Ultra-thin. Doing way-to-many-drugs thin. Staying-out-all-weekend thin. Water-and-Power-Bar thin. You get the picture.
Not that I miss those days of debauchery. Not that I miss some of the weirdos I knew. Not that I miss the headaches or the crashes or the depressions. What I do miss is the sense of freedom or the care-free attitude that came with being young, gay, and high. Meeting someone you think is so gorgeous and having them shower you with attention. I used to say, "Tim, it's the drugs, it's the drugs. Don't believe the hype." But yet, I still loved the attention.
The clothes in the bag were my "thin party-clothes". There is the $1000 white outfit that my friend designed specifically for me for a theme party. There's the sheer baby blue dress shirt that was my first big purchase in NYC. My high-water Yohji Yamamoto pants that I wore to many an open-air circuit party. My little red riding hooded-blazer that another friend made for me. I can barely get some of those clothes around my thigh now.
I guess I feel different about this bag because I feel like I am really putting away a part of my life. A part that started my gymrat days. A part that made the gym an obsession. I don't want to go back to those days. I love my life now. I like coming home to my handsome partner of seven years. I like getting up to see him leave for work. I love that I don't need to put on some ultra-clingy sheer shirt for any reason.
Even my gymrat status is fading a bit. Not that I mind. Later.
Things that I am thankful for today:
-that we came back to NYC on Friday evening AND caught the express trains all the way back.
-that I did not eat like "tomorrow was not coming"
on Thursday evening.
-that I ate a lot of leftovers on Friday morning.
-that it was not at all busy in the store on Saturday.
-that Thanksgiving is over.
Have I ever said that my favorite ballad is Un-Break My Heart
by Toni Braxton? I love that song no matter where and when I am. I even love the dance remix. It brings back both good & bad memories AND I still adore the song.
I love it even more as I sit here sipping a large mug of shade-grown coffee (with rBGH-free milk & sugar) while munching on a toasted organic wheat bagel (with fleur de sel butter & slices of triple-creme brie). The only thing better would be if it were in Paris with my boyfriend.
Somehow, I don't think any other gymrat does this in the morning. Well, there goes my chances on getting on BigMuscle.com. Later.
The holidays have kicked up the store traffic like you can't believe. It's so busy and the revenues are so high that we are being encouraged to stay overtime. I did the past couple of days but declined today since I have been going in at 6:00am. Boy, that really puts a damper on anything else for the day.
It's also been a bit insane since our Team Leader was abruptly asked to step down. And she did. Leaving us with no "manager". Suprisingly, the department looks ultra-good. All the staff is a bit amazed by it. Not sure how to take all this in. Don't really know what it says.
On the gym front, I'm still not motivated to go. Was going to go tonight but ended up with a bag of 365 Whole Foods Cheese Curls in my lap. And that's all she wrote. I'll go tomorrow before I start work at 3:00pm. Just in time for the mad Thanksgiving rush. Makes one really despise the holidays. Later.
Ahhhh, the holidays have kicked in. My store is starting to play holiday music. A lot of the holiday displays are being carted in. The back area of the store is so packed with backstock that it's becoming a bit scary to move around. A couple of us actually complained about the dangerous nature of wheels of cheese and boxes of olives stacked up. I do have to say that our team, as frustrated as we are with certain things, is sticking it out with each other. I love them all. Especially my partner-in-crime; she rocks. I won't name her because someone at work has discovered my blog.
Holidays never mix well with this gymrat. Actually, I tend to become even more of a gymrat because the gym is the one place most people don't make it to during this time of the year. It's quite glorious to work out when the gym is empty. And despite being sore from working in the beer department for the past few days (and the next few), I am still getting in some lifting. Now cardio, that's a whole other post. Later.
Some sad news: yesterday, someone in my department got fired. Specifically, the someone who runs the beer department. I have been asked to help cover the void for the next week. It sucks because he was a good worker BUT he was fired for very legit reasons that are hard to refute. He will be missed. The entire staff feels weird but knows the reason was... well, justified.
Moving on. The other day a friend and I got together for a moment to just catch up. We got on the topic of internet profiles, IM's, online personals, etc. We both wondered: why would you put up anything with a blatant typographical error? Also, if you don't know how to spell a word, please look it up. AND, if you don't know how to use a word, don't and, if you do, spell it correctly. AGGGGHHHH!
Is it just us or are the rest of you bothered by this? When I was single (way back in the day), I used to immediately cross someone off my "to do" list if they used a word incorrectly or spelled something wrong. My partner is the same way since he has to write a million reports. Do people realize how unattractive poor grammar is? Well, if they don't, it is. Later.
It's been a difficult task to keep my status as a gymrat since I picked up my "40-hour week" job. I've had to sacrifice some time to rest rather than head over to the gym for some exercise. The other day, I had to think twice about lifting because I was working in the beer department later on that day. There is a lot of heavy lifting when I work there since most of the time is dedicated to stocking and rearranging and receiving cases. You become very creative when you have to store 100 cases of beer in different areas of the store. My inner-architect flourished. It is fun for me though because it is a break from the cheese department. Just don't ask me too much about beer yet. I am still doing my research on the various nuances of the flavors and bouquets. Hic.
BUT I have made it to the gym often enough to stay in some sort of shape. At least some sort of shape that has led to some flirtatious moments in the beer section. When I work in the beer department, I tend to wear my street clothes and an apron tied tightly around my waist accentuating my broad shoulders. Well, the boys have been very friendly; both the boy staff and the boy customers. AND even some of the ladies have been "touchy feelie". Maybe I need to keep this workout routine. Later.
So, tomorrow, I have a day off. I am going to lift, take a class, have lunch with a friend, and just come home to relax. Cook a couple of things for dinner for the next few days. Definitely some beef chili to ward off the cold. Maybe some beef stew using a pumpkin beer that I purchased the other day.
I am trying very hard to not buy Britney Spears' Greatest Hits tomorrow. It's sugary and addicting and I am listening to it on AOL music right now. Plus, I already have Debbie Gibson's Greatest Hits. It's quite similar except Debbie has writing talent.
Please, people of blogland... make it stop... don't let me do it.... aagggghhhh... later (I hope).
My partner's highschool friend said something a couple of weekends ago that got on my nerves. She alluded that her weight was not her fault. That her living situation was not her fault. That she did not know how she was so heavy (300 lbs.) since she barely ate throughout the day.
While reading some responses to people blogs, I came across a comment that acused the general public of preventing kids from praying in school. The commenter claimed that we have become so "liberal" that we have destroyed the integrity of prayer in school. As I type that, I am not sure that it even makes sense.
When I was a full-time gym employee, I would always hear people say that their weight, their health, their lack-of-exercise, etc. was not their fault because (insert any lame excuse).
First, religion is a choice. You are not born with it. You can choose to follow one. You can choose not to. Just as some of us raised Christian choose to only follow parts of the religion that benefit us (Xmas, Easter), we choose to not follow others parts (fasting during lent, abstinence). Why do people who follow a religion think that the rest of us should? And why theirs?
Why are people who are "not the healthiest" always say it is not their fault? I used to tell clients and students that exercise is not about going to the gym to run on the treadmill or lift weights or take a pilates class. Exercise was about being active: take a walk around the City or in the park, clean your own apartment rather than hiring a cleaning person, go dancing, volunteer with a community-betterment group. I, for one, am a big believer in using housework to burn calories (do you know how many calories you burn when you vacuum and dust!!???!!!).
I just find it interesting when people in our country, which supposedly allows us choice, cannot see that they themselves are not allowing choice. If I don't follow your religion, it's my choice. If you are grossly overweight, it's your choice. If you think that our store never carries those olives that you like, than make a choice and don't come back. Just don't make it seem that it is everyone else's choice but yours. Later.
One last political rant: I am tired of people saying that "we" need to unite. That "we" need to support our leader. That only as "we" can "we" move forward. Well, FUCK YOU! Our leader does not want a "we". Our leader can only think of one "we". And that "we" is not gay, or liberal-thinking, or non-Christian, or non-Caucasian, or compassionate, or open-minded. So, all you Asian-Americans/African-Americans/Homosexuals/Women/Latinos/Immigrants that think that "we" need to unite to support him, well, we'll talk about that once we all are begging for the basic human rights that all the White, conservative, heterosexual Christians have decided to take away from us. I guess you don't really want the right the choose, the right to live your life, the chance for a cure, the war to stop, affordable health care, and the chance to even think that way. People, start thinking globally. America is not the world. We are part of it. A festering boil of it. Thanks for making it fester just a little bit longer.
After reading various blogs about how, like me, many are disappointed with the outcome of this election, I got to thinking. I started to think about my life. I know that I can go on. I can go on even if President GW does not think I should. I can survive anything he wants to throw at me. I am not counting on the country uniting to stop his conservative thinking. The red(neck) states showed that there are more people like him than us. Those who did not vote ARE like him, whether we believe it or not.
Just like I immigrated to this country, I can immigrate to another. And so can you. Stay if you want. Try to change it, if you want. I will. But that is what we do as humans. Humankind has evolved and continues to evolve. What was thought of as acceptable 1000 years ago, is no longer. What was normal 500 years ago, has changed. What was just 100 years ago, is not. Evolution is part of this world; it is inevitable. Those who oppose it end up becoming extinct.
It does not happen quickly. It happens. If gays can't get married, you think that will stop us? If women are denied the right to choose, you think it will stop them? If stem-cell research is not federally-supported, you think it will cease? NO! It will go on. And "we" will go on. Because at the core of it all, "we", the maligned/oppressed/down-trodden, are part of this world. Are part of the evolution. Are part of the inevitable. Take heart, all is not lost. All is still there. We see it. They just choose not to. We just have to keep trying to bring it out. We will. Those after us will too. Why? Because "WE" can.
There are very few words or actions that can give comfort. There are times when comfort is not what one needs. There are times when words don't really matter. There are times when words won't and can't help.
In 1982, I immigrated to the USA with my parents. After 17 years in Nigeria, they decided that they wanted to live a better life. I remember my elation when my father told me we were moving to America. I was 12. I was excited. I had hopes and dreams that I knew would come true in this country. After all, America is where you could be anything you wanted to be. America was were everyone went to realize their dreams.
This isn't my dream. Someone wake me up... please. Later.