Sunday, September 28, 2014

Hugs that last more than 10 seconds

I'm sitting in the center of the courtyard at Alta alone with my computer. 

In front of me to my left is a date. They're talking about his dog and the surgery the dog is recovering from. Sounds like the dog is going to be ok. 

Behind me to my left is a group of friends. I heard the word 'colleague' but that's all I know because they're just out of earshot and speaking softly. Which I respect. 

Lined against the fence to my right are medium sized groups of high school students. Really young, good looking high school students gathered probably from Harbor or CDM. A few trickle in and trickle out at a time and every time someone does, they all stand up and hug each other. A lot. If I didn't know school were already in session, these hugs would imply that they have been through so much together, like a war or a summer camp of intense emotional bonding and were then immediately torn apart from each other, separated by galaxies for decades. These are the kinds of hugs that are being exchanged. But I'm pretty sure they probably last saw each other on Friday. I'm judging them a little bit for this. Kind of like I did when I was in high school and sitting at this same table, surrounded by these same groups of high schoolers, giving each other the same hugs and me feeling simultaneously intimidated and superior. 
By the way, I had forgotten how good looking teenage boys the Newport Mesa school district can be. Go with me here. I'm speaking from a completely observational, completely uninterested point of view, but seriously. They're tan probably from water polo or surfing all time and their trendy moms are still buying them cool clothes and they have yet to hit college and be swallowed by frat culture where they'll gain 25-30 pounds and not drink enough water. They have no idea what's coming and a little bit of me wants to go over and tell them. Not to warn them. But more to rub it in their faces. After typing that sentence, it's clear to me now that I may still be holding onto a bit of resentment from high school. Let it go, Julia, you nerd lite, you.

(The girls are all wearing very short cut off jean shorts. If anything, I'm wondering more about how they aren't freezing-- besides the fact that they're butt cheeks are hanging out. That's for their mother's to deal with.)
(Maybe that's why I didn't have a boyfriend in high school? I was never willing to be cold in order for  them (boys) to see more body parts of mine.)
(Maybe that's why I don't have a boyfriend now.)

Case in point: I'm wearing black jeans, the red plaid shirt I stole from my mom during high school and birkenstocks. Comfort clothes. My toes are just barely cold, which I kind of love because it means that we might be sliding into California Autumn. Which doesn't mean much more than barely cold toes. 

I'm confused about a lot of things right now, but when I got home from Charlotte this weekend, I knew I wanted to blog. On Friday, I got such an encouraging email from a new friend that made me realize what a treasure this space is and how, of all times, this is the time for me to take advantage of it. 


"Can I just move to Maine and make wedding dresses and listen to James Taylor all day?" Something that I wrote in a journal a year ago yesterday. Maine. My idealized haven of autumnal colors, fresh seafood and solitude. When I catch myself thinking about moving to Maine a lot, I know that I'm probably avoiding dealing with something. And I've been thinking about Maine a lot lately. Wouldn't it just be so easy to move to Maine and work at a coffee shop that affords me to live in a small, uninsulated apartment in the backyard of an older couple's white sided house. I would paint the door yellow and I'd dye my hair black, not because I'm depressed or anything but because I'd think it would match with the weather better than any other color of hair. I'd wear two sweaters at once and I wouldn't have a lot of friends. I would be lonely, but I'd have a lot of time to cook and finally become someone who reads a lot instead of just lying to people and saying that I read a lot. Which is what I do now. Maybe I'd meet a nice, slightly round butcher and we wouldn't ever go on a date, but we'd flirt while discussing beef tips or something. 


The hardest thing about moving home: feeling perpetually lonely and also wanting to just be alone as much as possible. I feel angsty in such a cliche, post college way that it's almost embarrassing, but it's not fake to me. It's totally real. And I hesitate to even admit it because I can hear the "I told you so" from states away. But it really is real and I don't feel like people are getting that. My mind immediately compares this feeling to that thing when the crazy person is sitting in the mental hospital and is looking around at all the doctors and nurses and other patients and thinking to themselves "They're the crazy ones. Not me." So I get it. I get that you're reading this with a little bit of that thing that you're reading this with. A small smirk on your face and maybe thinking about how you felt the same way when you graduated college or how naive I am to even begin to allow myself to think that my life is hard. Or maybe you aren't and you get it and you don't think I'm being dramatic at all in which case please mail me an anonymous letter in my mail box with your favorite word and a drawing of you and me. 

The styling internship is maybe ending soon. I can't afford to work for free. Also, it's depressing to work for free. But I'm starting another job on Wednesday in Costa Mesa with a hair and makeup artist as her administrative assistant. I'm excited about it. 

2035 self: you're reading this and wondering why things sound so bleak for us 3 days after turning 23. life definitely does not suck. but it's definitely playing tricks on us. 

and we are still like super, super single. 

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Haiku #8


Commute did me dirty
California, at a price
Take me now, North 10

Sunday, September 7, 2014


I'm trying to decide-- actually, it's less of a decision and more of a calling or an invitation. Anyway, I'm trying to figure out which chair in my parents living room is going to be my chair. The one that becomes my default, the one that I start to assign feelings to and start to think of more like a living thing in the same way I used to with my dolls as a kid, the one that when my parents move to a new house, I think back at this living room and picture myself sitting in that chair.

Right now I'm sitting on the couch, but to be honest, it leaves a bit to be desired. It's a blue couch and perfectly comfortable, but it's lacking in some way that I can't quite determine. Maybe I just haven't taken enough naps on it yet to bond properly.


It's hard to deny the fact that this part of my life is an obvious shift from the past and let's just go ahead and embrace that cliche and call this a new chapter. Of my life. Of this blog. Of myself. So, I'm going to try and hit all of the major points, if not for you, for myself as a record of how things went:

Two weeks ago, I moved back to California and into one of my parents guest rooms from my summer in Philadelphia as an intern at Anthropologie. Earlier this summer, they offered me a job as an assistant designer. I turned it down. Philadelphia was nice and the chocolate chip cookies at the corporate cafe of the URBN headquarters were enough to make me rethink my entire life plans and all of my morals, but something in me felt strongly about coming back to California. For what? I didn't know. (Let's be clear: I don't know.) (Let's be clearer: The last few days I've wondered more often than I'd like to admit if I've made a huge mistake.)

I'd moved to Philadelphia from four years of college in Savannah, Georgia. But now I'm in Costa Mesa, and one of the walls in the guest room is covered in yellow floral wallpaper. For the last few days, I have been unpacking boxes of my life in college, which I suppose could also be considered the only adult life I've known, into the room with the wallpaper dividing everything into four piles: keep, give, store, toss. It was surprising and uncomfortable how many things that in Georgia were a given to make the effort to hold onto and ship across the country just don't make sense here and ended up in the toss pile. Then there are the things that are truly important to me. Pictures that I want to see every day. Sewing supplies that I use as often as I can. Where, in my parents home of bachelor pad style empty-nesterness does that all belong? Even my clothes feel different. I stood with my arms crossed, looking at all of them hanging in the closet and it threw me. Is that who I am? All of this color? And pattern? And dresses? My "all time favorites"? It doesn't feel like me. Or what I think of as me.

Today, I filled up my car with gas. I punched in my zip code. 31401. Savannah, Georgia. Which I guess is my way of saying that Georgia is where, as of this moment, I still find my default chair.

Worth mentioning:

Money. It sucks to not have any. No matter where you live.
Friends. I have them here, but it's different. They haven't spent the last four years with their lives on time-out waiting for me to come back, but this isn't Christmas break where we get to have dinner and talk all about life and gossip about people we used to be close with and then pay the bill and see each other the next year. I'm here to weasel my way in now. To establish myself as someone they call. And someone I call. And we go on walks where we can talk about life and not have to give months of back story because ideally, they'll know it already. Because we've lived it with together.
Friends Part II. I have them there. On my old default chair in Savannah as well as in places where they are adjusting and meeting new friends and making new lives too. I miss them. These people know me. They really, really know me and who I am. And I know how they each like their coffee and they all know how I like to talk about myself a lot.
Friends Part Ib. If you're my friend and you live in Orange County and you're reading this, please don't read too much into this and let this offend you, but I would say that I have about 5 good friends in Orange County and 4 of them have or are about to have children. I wonder what this says about me. (PS- all of your children are glorious and no, I did not mind holding her in the cry room, in fact, I really, really loved it.)
Streets. Is everything in Orange County somehow off of Bristol? And why can't I ever remember the difference between Bristol, Bear, and Baker?

Tomorrow, I start an internship with a stylist in West Hollywood. Internship numero six. The future is about as blank as it possibly could be and with all of the adjustments, something about this time of life is already so sweet and so wonderful and challenging in the exact way I wanted it to be. I'm digging in. I'm excited. This is where I'm supposed to be. A time of learning and relearning.

Friday, September 5, 2014

Lifespan of a Bushka

Chapter 1: in which our heroine goes to New York and finds herself

Chapter 2: in which our heroine goes to Georgia and finds herself

Chapter 3: in which our heroine goes home and starts looking

Stay tuned.