[12 May 2020> Dear Inurnet, by the time this pandemic is over we'll have our entire life logged in your ranks... this entry pikcing up from post #740, flashing back 28 years:]
Sept 3, 1992—Tucson
Woke up this morning and there was no food in the fridge so rode downtown to get breakfast, through the relatively brisk (70°) Tucson morning. September, the relief from an intensely hot summer. B.B. King comes on the radio singing "The Thrill is Gone." I was reading this article about that guy Tom who died while hiking on Pusch ridge and how miserable he was and was thinking if for some reason i should die tomorrow and if people i knew were reading this i would want them to know that i was intensely happy right now. Happier than i've ever felt in my life. I feel incredibly healthy, no pain whatsoever. My whole body fit and buzzing with energy. My head clear as this Tucson morning sky. Extreme pleasure in the simplest things, eating, shitting, sleeping. Not that i'd be sad if I died. I would be more than happy to die right now. Now "Tears of a Clown" just came on the radio, hmm.
Sept 4, 1992 [2 dreams not yet logged in our dream journal]
I dreamt that i swam around the world. The water was really cold but it was O.K. as long as i kept moving fast. Kevin came with me. We could see all the people on the shores... "Hey, there's Africa" and Africans lined the shores waving to us. "Hey, there's India", etc. I remember thinking how funny it looked, all the people along the shore. I was yelling hi to them all in different languages. Actually, it was some language i was making up. We even passed right by the South Pole, brushed up to it and touched a huge wall of ice, "brrrr, that's cold." Kept swimming and waving to the masses of people. The world wasn't so big but it was packed full of people.
Then I was in this bar and was seeing everything on instant replay. This one dude really disliked me for some reason and i could see on instant replay how he was trying to hit me but i was oblivious. He came at me again and tried to hit me. It was as if i was directing a film. I was thinking, "i should do this" and punched the guy in the face 3 times. Then he was down on the ground with a caved-in socket and i felt really bad. And i didn't want the bar owners to get mad at me. I tried to be friends with the guy but he wouldn't. Finally he shook my hand and put his arm around me and everybody was cool. The waitress came and took our orders of "fruits." I ordered kiwis and passion fruits.
Sept 6, 1992—Santa Cruz > Tucson
Thursday night it was decided we would go to Santa Cruz for an Ultimate [frisbee] tournament. I figured it was an opportunity to commune with the ocean and reflect on growth. Friday i struggled all morning to finish my Quantum Mechanics assignments being that i went to happy hour on Thursday night. [C], Tom B and this guy Murphy showed up and invited me to go with them to SC. I was siked about going but was getting strange vibes from Murphy. We drove all night stopping at a few rest stops to toss the disc around. 3 a.m. on the I-5 over the Grapevine. I drove the 8-12 shift but didn't sleep much after that. The sun was rising as we crossed over the Santa Cruz mountains. We showed up to the playing fields on campus. As we walked out there with our sleeping bags, masses of heads were popping up, silhouetted against the dawn-lit ocean. Clusters of gypsy Ultimate players. C and Murphy went to sleep in the woods and Tom and i set out to find his brother and these guys he knew from Seattle. At some point i woke up and was in the backseat crashed. We had an hour before the games started. And we didn't know what teams we were on (Tucson didn't have enough for our own team). We were on Ultimate time so we went to Hobees and got breakfast, amidst the post-apocalyptic downtown Santa Cruz still in the state of being rebuilt [we lived there during the Loma Prieta quake in October 1989 that destroyed most of the downtown]. Went back to the fields. We all (except Murphy who was still asleep in the forest—he didn't like Ultimate) hooked up with some teams. I asked some guy who was hectically trying to organize the schedule if any teams needed pickup players. He thought Bakersfield-Fresno did. There was 100s of people and he didn't know where Bakersfield was. I just walked around and started asking where the Bakersfield-Fresno team was. Finally found Brad, the team captain. Our first game was against South Bay. They were damn good. Their zone just killed us, then they would turn and score. They beat us 13-2. Then we played Long Beach and lost 13-1, though we seemed to be playing better. I layed it out for our only point. Scored a couple more the next game which we lost 13-6 against S.F. Squids. That was after a 2-hour break in which i got really sunburnt watching Tom and C's games. We lost our last of that day too. Went down to El Zarape and got a big table for the Seattle team. I was feeling strange, still on one or 2 hours sleep and all day in the hot sun playing Ultimate and now drinking beer and chowing food, all the blood rushed to my stomach and my brain was screaming REM. So i went back up to sleep in the quarry [an old haunt of ours] and it wasn't even my idea, supposedly the Seattle team were sleeping there. Reminded me of the time Elva and i slept there and got awakened by wild pigs that (along with some rain) scared us off and next morning we read about how some drunk guy went up there at 3 a.m. (we left around 2 a.m.) and threatened to commit suicide and some long drawn out ordeal with the cops. Anyways, now here we were here 2 or 3 years later with a bunch of freaks fanatical about throwing and catching a plastic disc. I crashed immediately. They were lighting bowls and drinking beer. I slept at least 10 hours. Woke up and the sun was high. Everybody else was asleep. Made some noise. Tom's bro Pete got up, it was 9:15. First game was supposedly at 9:30. In theory. Quick breakfast at 7-11. i.e. a cup of Joe. Found my team but no one knew what was going on. Ended up sitting around til past noon. Oh yah, we pulled into the parking lot and who should be there but Pablo. Flew out on a whim. Ol' Plucky Purcell himself [character from Another Roadside Attraction]. So i hooked him up with my new-found team, but he also slutted himself out to Burbank. We eventually played "Tobcat" [sp?—illegible] and did much better though we lost. We had also acquired some member of the Potted Plants (thus, since Bakersfield's name was "Mucous" or "Snot" we called ourselves "Potted Mucous" and had such cheers as "there's a fungus among us.") We were having so much fun we hunted down another team to play. Got a pickup game going with Flambé. Paul was a definite asset to the team and ½ way thru the game against Flambé Tom appeared so we told him to get a white shirt and jump in. He made some psycho-D digs and instantly earned the respect of the team. We eventually won the game, nice for a change, and a good note to end on. Things were really in the air after that. No one could decide to do anything. Tom wasn't sure if he was coming back with us or with Bubby. Murphy was being weird and mood and indecisive. Couldn't decide whether to hitch with us to L.A. or head to S.F. He has this thing for C and was letting her get under his skin. Paul and i were trying to get a movement to go to the beach. No one was taking the bait, they wanted to watch the finals. Murphy came with me and Paul to the beach, to Natural Bridges. I made a beeline for the water, sweet mother ocean. Enfold me under your waves, refreshing, cold, invigorating. Paul was playing 500 with the Seattle team on the beach. Murphy was still acting weird and indecisive. So we went back just in time for the finals. South Bay versus L.A. Iguanas. On the majestic fields overlooking Monterrey Bay. Beautiful. But I'm still glad i live in Tucson now. I feel like i've changed a lot since then. Paul also went to UCSC. What a funny character. He went on about his exploits taking mushrooms and "rolling with the girls in the meadows." Pablo, the overgrown kid jock with big jowls and a happy-go-luck attitude. Doesn't fit in to any categories except maybe the Plucky Purcell type.
South Bay won. Went to the wharf and splurged on some sea food. Excellent. Then we hit the Ultimate party. It was at the Whole Earth. They had a band and a couple of kegs. Chilled there for a while then Tom brought up the idea of leaving then and there, after the party. I was game. But where was Murphy? Psycho Murphy. Off on a walkabout in the forest. The Charles Manson type. I found him sitting by himself behind some building. Told him what we were thinking and he's all "oh really? Bunch of wishy-washy folks, whose idea was this?" Went to the car to take a nap in case they decided to split and i needed to drive (they were all drinking). But Murphy kept waking me up when he'd made weird snide comments to people he didn't even know, "hey girl, are you o.k. to drive?" They would look at him like he was psycho and say "I don't know what you're talking about mister, i haven't been drinking." He just kept loitering by the car harassing innocent people. C wanted to get her vacation/partying time in. We waited, tossing the disc in the parking lot in the dark, over fields of cars. Eventually once the party was diminishing we went to search for C who had evidently left. She was nowhere to be found. We finally found her and she was pretty toasted and we couldn't pry her from her new circle of friends, who had decided they wanted to go to some house party downtown. Eventually we got her into the car. I took the wheel. By the time we left it was 3 a.m. About 5 miles outside of Santa Cruz, Murphy said "stop the car, i need to change my pants." He spilled water on his shorts. About 7 miles outside of town he said "can you stop again? this is the last time i'll make you stop." He had finally made up his mind to go north. He was very adamant about being left then and there. We offered repeatedly to take him back to Santa Cruz but he refused. So we left him there on the side of Highway 17. C was already crashed and too dazed to even notice this fuss that Murphy was making, all over her. I got us over 17 down 101 and over the 152 to the 5 at which point i got tired (around 5 a.m.) and pulled off for a nap. Slept 20 minutes then the car alarm next to us kept going off and there were people in it doing nothing about it. So i got back on the road, the others sleeping thru everything. Past Coalinga and fields of miserable cows. Another sunrise in the central valley. Amazing stuff. On the way up over the Grapevine Tom was driving and Pablo was cutting him some lines, at the exact spot where Kevin [brother + co-author of Textiloma] used to explain his philosophy about how to snort coke on the way to S.F., how it was all about timing—if you sniffed up in L.A. the buzz would wear off before you hit the Bay Area, so the idea was wait til you hit a certain point on the Grapevine to sniff some lines and it would last you just right. Problem with this theory was that we were going in the opposite direction and these lines certainly wouldn't keep Tom awake til Tucson. I couldn't sleep thinking about this. And i was wired on the sunrise. We stopped at Perkos and had a miserable breakfast. C threw up somewhere near San Bernardino where we played video games and i drank Ginseng tea and ate Certs. I couldn't sleep much, it was hazy and bright and hot and generally blah, so i took over driving. At Gila Bend another guy stopped where we did, we thought to play musical chairs like we were, but ends up they were mooning oncoming traffic. Maybe their baboon genes were still subliminally being expressed. It was a fun trip. I might add that the only 4 words C spoke the entire time were "Nice! Exactly! Definitely!" and "Waaaaahhhoooo."
[alma mater slug disc we picked up at the tournament + still have]
Sept 11, 1992
Full moon. This is where things start to get weird. This is where time has no meaning. Where you realize reality doesn't have to be chronological or spatiological. Nothing needs to make sense. It just is. Images. Should I say "i woke up" or "i ate" or "i shat" or "i thought about [Zo] a lot"? I create, i daydream hypothetical situations, i'm a hopeless romantic. I'm in love with things that won't materialize. [... little did we know we would be reunited w/ Zo + get married 4 years later]. I seem to be in control, albeit on autopilot. No one's indicating otherwise. I get up in front of a class and tell them what's up and what to do and they listen and take notes. It never ceases to surprise me that what i say is important enough that the students write it down. I do my homework. I'm a good kid, trying to fit in. But still i suspect i'm wired different, fundamentally. Maybe everyone is like this when they go home at 12:30 a.m. But could they really think everything is as weird as i perceive it to be? The metallic clouds in the moonlight. The din of parties throughout Tucson like it's a hive. The warm temperate night. I strip my bed so it's just a black sheet. I open the window. I take of all my clothes and lay spread eagle on the bed. I'm free. I'm happy for a dream to take me. I realized that's absurd and that's why i'm back in the kitchen silence writing this.
I dreamt i was in Washington D.C. and had to stand in a long line to see the Washington Monument. [at the time we'd never even been east of New Mexico + here we are living here now...]
I was trying to get into the basement of a big house (kind of like caving). I would check all the locks in and out to make sure i knew how to get out. [these dreams also net yet logged]
Sept 13 (4:10 a.m.)
I made the mistake of going to bed at 10:30 and now i'm wide awake at 4 a.m. in the morning. I'm sore all over, especially my thigh where i came down on Paul after going up high for a frisbee. Oh miserable body. Bag of bones. Yet it's got control of me, because "i" exist in it and i depend on its physical well-being. They picked the teams for Ultimate yesterday, i didn't vote for myself. I'm listening to My Bloody Valentine and trying to describe the feeling i have of euphoria, where the reality of emotion overwhelms me, almost making me cry. An emotion i had a lot when i was travelling. A sort of homesickness even though i don't have home, or at least don't know where it is except here and now, yet i long for some sort of idea of "home". The realization that it's just me, alone here. The kingdom is within. How long does it take the reality of these thoughts to materialize? Meditation that only leads to frustration. Sure, i could go to church or become a hare Krishna. But i think the whole point is that you have to discover it for yourself. Though other analogies help, like Quantum Mechanics.
I was in a dream, in a film clip about these people that bungee jump onto Navy Ships to steal secret information. I was on a tugboat like thing with who felt like Mark Levine and [C]. We were in a Navy shipyard. I fell in the water and it was really warm so felt it must have been to Florida. We were still in a movie. We were supposed to infiltrate on to the Navy ship and become spies. Finally we pulled up to this boat where there was this party and C casually stepped aboard (in her bikini). There was like 15 people aboard and she was to infiltrate and pretend like she'd been there all along. We left her there and went off in our boat with a faulty starter. I set up 2 extension cords on this stone wall, neither end was hooked up. I'm not sure what it was for. Then we pulled out of the bay. I saw Rich Otto get into a car with Carl and drive off. I started chasing them (boats could go on roads). Ahead of us a bunch of dolphins were swimming across the road. I turned off the engine and we glided into them. They were incredibly friendly and took to our petting. I jumped into the water (about 3 feet of it about a road—it seemed we were on the road along the beach, like in Santa Cruz). The dolphins swam up like pet dogs. They were white and slimy and fun to swim with, frolicking in the water. Then the water drained from the road. The dolphins started running, they looked really funny. They jumped into the sewer. It was gross, full of sludge and oil and garbage. I felt like we should return them to the ocean, but it was hard to catch them down in this sewer. I saw a dead pink fluffy dolphin and another made of stone with a chipped nose. I saw a baby but didn't want to take it by itself. David found one and pulled it out, but it was a mother of a litter of pups. the father and some other dolphins were casually hanging out and weren't bothered that we stole the mother. We returned her and figured they were pets (there was food out for them and bedding). I was torn between people's rights to have pets and the rights for the dolphins to be in the ocean. Went to this Mexican restaurant, we walked too quickly for her.
Jeff and i were at this park picking fruits and vegetables. Some guy was looking at my bike. He started going away and ran over and grabbed it. He wouldn't give it back at first but his friends were all don't be a dick. So he let go. He kept lingering then he grabbed Jeff's $600 mountain bike. Jeff ran out but rather than just grab him, he climbed up on top of this truck and waited for the guy to start riding away then jumped on him knocking him to the ground. Then he punched him in the face. His friends started to jump in and i ran over and said he deserved every bit of it and they didn't jump in. I got Jeff to quickly leave. There was a market we were supposed to take back to where were going.
So what's up? Haven't been writing much lately... not that things are boring, but i'm just back into my ritualistic routine. I had a quantum test today. It was easy, but i forgot to normalize the wave function on one problem. I study less and understand more this semester. I’m really getting into quantum. I wish i could express what i find so intriguing about it. I want to master it so it is second nature.... i mean, to have an auxiliary function, a wave function with no real physical meaning until you take a measurement. It's all like a religion to me.
TA'ing is becoming easier. I'm over the physical nervousness, now i just have to get good at expressing myself. Sometimes i fumble over my words, or lose my train of thought, or forget things i really wanted to make a point of saying. Some of the students are real characters, Stephanie and C, the belly-dancing astronomy majors. She is into sailing to the point that she manages to draw analogies to it from anything including circuits and such. Haven't done much for SCLERA, no time. Dr Hill is in China.
Haven't been climbing for about a month. Ultimate is becoming really intense. I made the A team but i will probably play with the B team to play more. In the meantime i continue practicing with the A team. Excellent workout. It's all very mental for me. A matter of confidence. I think once i'm mentally confident in my abilities i will be much better. Sectionals is the weekend after this. This "mental thing" seems to be carrying into my studies. Attitude is everything. As long as you believe in yourself. PMA as HR says.
I feel physically excellent. Just had a big blender full of carrot juice, peaches, spinach, almonds, ice, protein powder and cinnamon a day on top of L-lysine, lecithin, calcium, magnesium, vitamin C.
Most of my relationships from last year are dissolving. Mostly voluntary. Others i just don't have the time for. My social life now revolves around Ultimate. Every once in a while i go to Quebec with Mia and those girls, with dyed hair, tattoos and pierced body parts. And Sather wrapped up in her social dramas, she broke up with Rusty, was sleeping with Brett when Rusty came in at 4 a.m. My heart still drops when i see Zo. I think about her constantly. She emanates radiance. She broke up with Seth and has been increasingly more friendly to me. Telling me to call her, or telling me i look nice or saying "Room to Move is playing Saturday, that's where we met Derek, remember?" Damn, that flower dress, those tan fit legs, that thick head of hair and that quirky smile! She has the MCAT on Saturday.
black clouds lingering
the wind comes in suspiciously
moving the air
now i smell
the trees dancing, waiting
the molecules ping my skin
cool mixed with warm
a flash in the distance
I had a dream last night that i taught Lucas how to take pictures with my camera (he was still a baby). He would jump off high places with a clay mask over his head. I saw it in discrete images, like time-lapse.
Yesterday was a day to say fuck it. Took off around 1:30 to go climbing. Went up to Rupley towers at Windy Point w/ Chawn. It was nice to be go up through the rising plains of saguaros, standing patiently like sentinels. Like greeting lost friends. And the towering rock formations, so patient and still and majestic. First we did R3, a 2-pitch 5.8. Chawn led both pitches being that i haven't climbed for so long. It was no big deal except my hands were really sweaty. I'm such a chalk junky. I freak out if i can't chalk up every few moves. We top-roped Teen Toads, a 5.10a. It actually wasn't that hard. The sunset was beautiful crimson red splashing on swirls of clouds. Now the thunder rolls in long drawn out swoops like jets across the sky. It's a teaser. Hanging ominously in the distance. I sit her waiting at Time market. Waiting for what? On the path across the street a black cat with white eyes stares at me. Now it's gone. Now it's back, waiting to get in. The thunder freaked the cat out and it ran away, tail down around back.
Bill Counter, my yoga teacher, tells us we should keep a yoga journal. My ex-Tai Chi teacher told us we should keep a Tai Chi journal. Climbers say to keep a climbing journal... well this is a climber–yoga–physics–dream–hiking–social–ultimate–reading–health and general philosophy journal. Journal of life. So yoga, i've been pretty flakey about it, most of the sessions are when i'm working, have a class or ultimate practice. But when i do go i feel excellent. In harmony with my body and it's functioning, a sort an inner complacent buzzing. Toned and efficient. Not as limber as i'd like to be, but that takes time. Go to the co-op after, come home and make an aloe-papaya-carrot juice-spinach-banana-strawberry-ice-protein powder-cinnamon-vanilla smoothie and now i'm eating a black bean/corn/rice concoction with leftover samosa fillings. The samosas were from last night’s potluck.
After a grueling practice there was a potluck at Ronnie's. Put the samosas in a Nike box and rode through the back streets of Tucson, getting lost cuz her street, Lynder, disappeared for a while. But it was fun. Ronnie's got a classy place, spacious with plants and artwork, like a real home. She looked really nice, too bad she's got a boyfriend. Not that many people showed up, none of the A-team players, too arrogant i guess. But it was fun and my samosas were a hit. I left around 10:30, rode all the way back to The Rock. The second i walked in Zo grabs my arm and pulls me through the crowd. I'm so confused. I almost wish she was cruel to me. I try to be nice and sincere without collapsing too my knees or let her on that i'm still madly in love with her. But at the same time i feel like an idiot because i want her so badly. "Pride is stronger than love" (the opposite of what Sade says) but sometimes i don't know if i'm strong enough to resist her. If she opened any doors i would step right in. I couldn't get into the band much, probably cuz of seeing Zo, talking to Mark and Brian, seemed just like same old shit. Mark going on about his philosophy of physics and i don't have the heart to tell him he doesn't know what he's talking about. Rich and his usual ignorant hippy shit about "physics is mental toy, there's no truth but opinion." It's as if they don't think i have any interests outside of physics, or they feel threatened, like they have something to prove. And Brian going "gggggrrrrr," his face flaring red, then smiling in a sarcastic way, going on about how he ate 2 juicy rare steaks for dinner, nothing but steaks" and i say "yah, it shows. Good for you." Them telling me to cut my hair, that there's too many other hippy freaks, when the only reason my hair is long is just cuz i'm lazy. And Brian is one to talk. I tried to go off in a corner and just enjoy the band but they were taking themselves far too seriously, never smiling, not as good as they used to be. Suddenly i felt "what am i doing here?" I'm not enjoying this, so i bailed. Didn't say bye to anyone though i made a quick check and couldn't find Zo, the only person in that crowd that lights me up. Sometimes i just feel like i can't relate to anyone. Sometimes i feel like crying, but then again i'm happy as a clam, as long as i'm by myself, in my own shell.
So i guess Tuesday i was trying to study and all i could think about was Zo. Then it suddenly occurred to me how ridiculous this was. I was pretty fed up and decided to do something about it. So i wrote this long note basically saying that i was completely ga-ga about her and how i needed to "de-mystify" her, if we can't be together. My obsession for her is probably something i've built up, this idealized romantic love for something i can't have. There was really no point to it except in the writing of it and sending, that would help (I never did send it). When i got home that evening i felt this strong urge to just call her up and ask her out and just lay it out on the table. I paced around and consulted the I Ching and it gave me the same hexagram as i always get when i consult it about Zo. Call that coincidence, or synchronicity, wave functions that have permanently collapsed. It was #31—
[draws in margin]
—Influence (wooing). The joyous lake over the mountain right on target. "the lower trigram is the youngest son, the upper is the youngest daughter. This the universal mutual attraction between the sexes is represented. In courtship the masculine principle must seize the initiative and place itself below the feminine principle." And other stuff about "by keeping still within while experiencing joy without, one can prevent the joy from going to excess and hold it within proper bounds." and how perseverance makes the difference between courtship and seduction. And it goes on, excellent passage ending with "from the attractions they exert, we can learn the nature of all beings in heaven and earth." And "thus the superior man encourages people to approach him. By his readiness to receive them."
I figured that meant i should call. I dialed 7-9-2-3-6— then hung up. Chickened out. Pick it up again, nervous as hell. 7-9-2-3-6-1— nope. Hung up. Finally i went through with it. Sather answered the phone laughing and i could Zo laughing in the background. I didn't know what to say. Sather's all "what's wrong?" I hadn't anticipated this. "Is it about a girl? It's Zo isn't it?" What could i say, she was right on. "You still love her, don't you?"
I didn't know if Zo was in earshot. I said i wouldn't call it that, tho i was definitely still infatuated. She said they had been talking about me and love and Zo was talking about how well i treated her. This wasn't helping the situation. I didn't have much to say so i got off. A few minutes later Zo calls back, "are you alright, Derek? I want you to be able to talk to me." She was acting like she had been expecting me to call. I didn't want to get into it on the phone, so i asked her out to dinner the following night. So the next day, after ultimate, i met her at the library. I thought about it a little bit but decided i didn't want to have any preconceived notions or planned speeches, that i would just play it by ear and figured if i kept to being humble, sincere and honest (obviously I Ching influenced) everything would be O.K. She was being her usual quirky self. Brian was there and looked surprised and almost annoyed to see me, just as he did that morning when he met Sather and i for breakfast and we were already eating. So of course right off (after Brian leaves) she's all "what were you upset about". I didn't feel like telling her and felt more like just "being" with her and getting used to being around her. We rode back to her house and then drove to the Olive Garden. I eventually told her most of how i was feeling. She took it all very nonchalant. It suddenly felt like we had just broken up yesterday and we were exactly where we were when we left off. "You told me you didn't trust me, etc..." that all seemed irrelevant, past. I just wanted to deal with the here and now. I wanted to deal with the fact that i still hadn't gotten over her after 6 months and it wasn't that i wanted to get back together or patch our relationship, it was that i wanted to learn to just be friends, so i wouldn't be hung up on her and could go on with my life. All and all it went ok, although i don't think i expressed myself well. When we got back we hung out. I told her she looked very happy these days. She told me she was sad. She seemed like she meant it. Boy am i sucker for sad girls. I'm not sure compassion is a virtue, "a lonely girl won't set you free" or however Ian Curtis put it.
Sept 26 1:40 a.m.
Thursday went to the symphony. $3 rush tickets. It was cool, they played some Profokeiv (the one about Lieutenant (unintelligible) and some spanish composer Rodrigo (excellent shit). Vivaldi (ehh) and Stravinsky's Firebird Suite. Also found out quite by accident that i had a Math Methods test on Tuesday. Yikes. And Mechanics on Friday. And i was to go to Sectionals in Phoenix over the weekend so wouldn't get much done. Friday i spent the whole day doing my Mechanics assignment, hard even with the solutions. Then Friday night at Bentley's studying Mechanics i'm actually getting into the stuff, really understanding it. I was reading my undergrad text which i remember totally struggling with and now it read like a novel.
Saturday was Ultimate day. Shaheen came by around 7 a.m. and went up to Phoenix with him and Jesus. It was a hot day. Baking. We only had about 8 or 9 B-team players (we called ourselves "Breakaway Republic" which I'm sure the A-team (Ultimate Smoothies—after Adam's soon to be smoothie shop) didn't appreciate. We had Mike, Craig, Dr. Dave, Mark, me, Jesus, the other Mike and Anthony (yes the same obnoxious one from the nocturnal) and Eric, both from Vegas. And Josh showed up around the 3rd game. 1st we lost to Santa Fe 13-4 then to Fort Collins 13-6 then to Boulder 13-4 then to Phoenix 13-2 and "Pond Scum" 13-2. We sucked. We didn't have subs so were totally trashed. But we had fun. I had quite a few diving catches and connections, probably a dozen scores. Was still frustrated though, making stupid mistakes, biffing easy throws and one where i just dropped the disc while making a fake. My feet were blistering sore from new cleats. My thighs all scraped up, my elbows scraped, my tail bone bruised and i smashed my head so hard i was literally seeing stars after—pieces of cellular debris floating around in my field of vision. Meanwhile the A-team then lost to Albuquerque and left a bitter game against Denver unfinished (it got dark). The women finally won a game, the first in tournament play. Smart coordinating—they put all the free beer right after, so you have all the tired, wasted, dehydrated Ultimate players who haven't eating a thing all day suddenly downing kegs of beer. I was really antsy to eat, but hey if it's not your ride you gotta join em. Eventually we migrated to Dr. Dave's house where we took a hot tub. The usual 5 car road train weaving in and out of Phoenix traffic like a snake, it's tail end (us in Josh's car) running red lights to keep up. Then we went to Char's in Tempe and met up with the rest of the girl's team, table of 17. Hectic but hey just slop some of that Tom Yum in my bowl and some of that green curry or pad thai or whatever else. Josh drove Jesus and i back getting in at 1:30 a.m. and now it's 8:00 and it' study study study.
I dream that Zo and i were roommates. But we never really saw each other. We had this really big room (reminded me of my room in Ajijic) and i was gonna get this piece of furniture—an old "corner" couch. I had a good feeling about this, the one that was currently there wasn't very comfortable. I was looking at the room thinking about all the space we had, lots of space we never used. And Zo was never around and i really wanted to see her and co-habitate (we had separate beds but i had romantic feelings for her). I wanted to tell her about the new couch and just be with her.
Oct 2, 1992
Hola. It's Friday night and i'm staying home. What's wrong with me? Parties to go to but i'm just not motivated. My social life has been non-existent so far this semester. I just feel i don't enjoy parties, they feel more like a social obligation. Bullshit waste of time. I'd rather read and get some needed sleep so i can wake up at 6:00 to go climbing. Had 2 tests this week. Math Methods take-home... i filled out 20 pages and had another 20 or so of scratch. I'm really not too sure how i did. Same with my Mechanics test. Sometimes i feel like i'm understanding, at other times i feel lost and can't concentrate. I don't feel burnt out, so that's good.
Back to this social thing... sometimes i wish i could see myself through other eyes. I must be an asshole sometimes because i'm losing "friends". And the sad thing is i don't care. I still see the Jesses. Went to Rincon with Sather and Zo stopped by my office yesterday. I was telling her i needed to finish my take-home, looked up at the clock and realized i was 15 minutes late returning it. So i walked in to the front of class, handed in my paper then just walked back out and got coffee with Zo. She kept bugging me about Mia so maybe that means she likes me, i don't know, it's really hard to read her. She told me i was acting cold. If she only knew. I told her she made me nervous. She does. I just made some miso soup and it tastes like shit. Went to happy hour, mainly cuz Zo said she'd be there. But Mia showed up and then Brett... oh boy, what fun. I did hook up with Ignacio to go diving down in San Carlos so that's cool. Damn, it's been a long time. I feel i need to commune with them fishes. What more is there to say? Carrot-aloe-papaya-strawberry-spinach juice, coffee, study, not sleeping. By no means routine or even ritualistic.
Yech! I hate Sundays. I mean, it's cool chilling here with the birds chirping and shit, in front of Time market watching people do their Sunday morning things, w/ my Java and a slight hangover and stinging eyes from staying up until 3:30 a.m. Really i was planning on studying (Sat night) but i felt like eating Thai food. Called people but nobody else was into it. Everybody was going to some party or another and i can't deal with parties any more.
Ahhh, the Joe definitely helps. I had just given up on Thai food and seeing "Bob Roberts" both of which require a car which is why i didn't go alone, when [C] calls, "whachadoin?" I told her i wanted to get Thai food. I knew she had just gotten Thai food the other night and said "you probably don't want to go" and ends up she ended up not going. So we went to Chars. Fairly good, not as good as the one in Phoenix but still an excellent eating experience. I haven't quite figured C out but have instinctual vibes about some weirdness that i can't quite words to. So we were talking about the Navajo reservation and how she wanted to go back to the rez to help her people which surprised me cuz sometimes she acts like a total white girl wanting to fit in in a white world. Conversation obviously switched to politics as that's really the only way to change things and i was commenting on how screwed it is we give the BIA money, but designate a committee of Washing political bullshitness to say what they can spend their money on, kind of like the government is the parents and the Navajo are children who have to beg their parents when they want money for something and have all sorts of restrictions. She agreed but said it was necessary cuz of all the corruption within the tribal council and then told me how her family was ostracized from the rez and how they were caught embezzling $100,000 that was in her mother's bank account. I was thoroughly confused and figured i misunderstood her but didn't want to question the issue. The whole scenario didn't jive with how she was so proud of her father, he was the director of some Navajo college and worked in Washington, etc. I regret not pursuing it now as i'm confused, but then again maybe there's some things i'm better off not knowing. So after dinner we went over to the Sweetwater Cafe and had some coffee and cheesecake to some Jazzy band then over to Jaime's where Spacefish was playing. Tom was there with his 2 friends both named Scott. Spacefish is a cool little band, i've seen then somewhere else but forget where. Eventually Heather showed up with her parents, who stayed about 2 minutes. But she stayed, with her cool positive attitude. Nick showed up too. He heard that i climb and told me he really wanted to go. It was quite funny. He was extremely enthusiastic, he would go off and come back periodically to tell me how "fucking excited" he was about going climbing and how he couldn't think about anything else. "I'll be so nervous (as he demonstrates how he would be shaking (Elvis leg and Edward Scissorhands fingers).... it will be so great! I'm so afraid of heights, it will be excellent!" Then comes back later, "it will be safe, right?"
"Safe's the operative word."
"Cool, i'll trust the rope more than i trust myself." Hmm. At least he's got enthusiasm. Met these 2 New Yorker dark-haired girls, Jessica and Talia... oh no, not another Jessica, and she looked like Zo too, dark-eyed, hippie Italian. And Talia was beautiful. Nick was fondling her hair and saying it was so amazing, he's so odd. He seemed to forget about his climbing enthusiasm he was so wrapped up in this girl's hair. He must of been on drugs. What a weird scene. Jaime's is only a few blocks from my place and i've never gotten around to going. Saw Liz as i was leaving and said Happy b-day (Zo told they threw a party for her on Friday night). But it was actually Amber's b-day. She said there was an after-hours party at her house. I left with C and Nick and Tom was gonna meet us there on bikes. When we got there, there was only like 10 people, no one we knew but we walked in anyway. There was some dog with a lampshade on his head, it was hilarious. He was running around spazzing out and barking at some cat, but the plastic lampshade was acting as a megaphone, amplifying his barks. Something about this dog amused me greatly, it would be really trippy to have your perception not include your body. I spent the whole time hanging out with the dog. Nick or Tom never showed up so we eventually left and figured we'd look for them as the night before Nick wiped out on a patch of gravel (riding home from a party drunk) and got a nice road pizza. He got back on his bike then preceded to smashing into one of those hazard barrier tripod things with the yellow lights. He looked up and all he saw was the flashing light. So we went to his house, he wasn't there, then to Tom's, lights out. Then to some supposed party that we never found. The guy told me 6th ave and 1st street, then told C said 2nd ave and 1st street. When i questioned him about it he said, "no, i said 6th st and 2nd ave. After trying every permutation of 1st/2nd/6th avenues/streets we finally gave up. Went to my place and i made some coffee for C. She sat down on my bed next to me and i was wondering if she was expecting me to make a move. Her body screams yes, those fit legs, fit all over, those high cheekbones, but my instincts are screaming no! Some more of her unstable weirdness began to be revealed. She kept speaking of her "sexual maturity", how in high school she was called a slut for dating the most popular guy even though she didn't have sex with him. She says she only relates to guys, not girls, says girls are concerned with who's a bitch and what not and this weird trip about how she respects guys cuz they're all "i work for a living" and they're hard on each other. Definitely a Tom Boy. Then she told me some story (as we're running out to 6th st cuz we heard the sound of screeching tires and crunching metal that sounded very close) about how she was at a stop light and these 2 girls pulled up next to her and said hi. C didn't want to be rude so she made conversation back. Then they went off on her, "you total bitch, you slut, i know you slept with the whole football team, don't act like you don't know what i'm talking about, you did me! You went down on me! You bitch..." (something along those lines). C was devastated. She said it was the longest stoplight she ever experienced. She made it clear that she wasn't so upset because it caused her to question herself, this experience really affects her life. She went home and cried for hours.
So time rolls by at the Time market, there's some lame walk-a-thon. It's parent's weekend and these stupid parents are walking by. Kirsten is sitting next to me and giving me little anecdotes about how they strap magnets to pigeon's backs to see if it screws up their "homingness". It didn't but when they wrapped coils around their ears it did affect them on cloudy days. And how they put wax in bat's ears and then they're mouths to see if they'll smash into things. Twisted, we humans are. Yesterday went climbing with Chawn, we went to Rupley's, first did R2, a 2-pitch 8+ which Chawn led. Then we top-roped Border Patrol (5.10a). I was feeling very mellow and not much in a climbing mood, but i did it anyway and did it anyway and didn't peel off though it was hard. Then we did R2D2 a 5.6+ which i led just get back into the swing of things, making placements. Then over to R4 (creative names, eh?) which Chawn led. I think i went up wrong cuz i had a hell of a time on it, almost gave up but eventually got this tricky overhanging thing. Scraped the shit out of my legs. When i got up it was too mellow and nice and i felt like basking so i belayed Chawn while he did some 5.9 and 5.10a (Moving Over Stone) then we left. Stopped at Ultimate Smoothies, Adam's got a good racket going there.
Oct 7, 1992
So later on that miserable Sunday, i fell asleep in the sun—skipped Ultimate, though i did work out, then met Zo and went to Z's for dinner. I keep falling deeper into her, contrary to what i expected (that i would get used to just being friends with her) but my left brain still has a full nelson on my right brain. Then i managed to get more of nothing done than went to see Bob Roberts. The answering machine said it was playing at 10:30 but ended it was playing at 9:40. Oh well, so Brian, Zo and i went to Safeway and had some sort of strange experience, then got "Paris is Burning" on video and went back to Zo's. It was interesting but a little slow. Sather went to bed... then Brian took off... then Todd took off. I looked over and Zo was sleeping. She looked so beautiful, i just wanted to touch her skin. But i left. Monday was studying at Bentleys. They were all sitting at their little table but i really had to get some studying done. Besides Brett was there so i didn't want to cause tension. But Zo asked me to the movies the next night. I'm in a total slump. Managed to do jack shit lately. Eat, breathe and sleep. Don’t even manage to do a good job of that. Tuesday i really wanted to play ultimate. Rode all the way to Grant and 4th to some supposed park but there were just soccer players. I was early but i figured it was ridiculous to play at 5:00. I rode all the way back to my house to check my answering machine then all the way to Hemmel. Nada. Oh, well, stairmaster. Then ate and met Zo for the movie. She's being her weird slap happy Zo, i only wish i knew what was going on in her brain. Went and sat on her bed afterwards and looked at wedding pictures.
Yesterday managed to waste another day away. Got to school early then "talked" to miles on Unix and got through. He's at MIT now studying physical oceanography, actually Woods Hole. Next thing i know 2 hours had passed. Then ate lunch then ran into Michelle and ended up "mall crawling" for another 2 hours. Then took a nap... time... ate dinner then ran into Steve at Time market. Ends up they had some CD's stolen, a whole box, maybe 20 or 30. And they were all distraught, couldn't figure out who did it. I guess my neighbors in the next unit hang out there, the little girl and the dumb aunt. So next week the girl and aunt are using the phone and as Steve and Bruce are driving away they see the girl carrying a handful of CDs. They go to their place and the rest of the CDs were there in the middle of the birdcage. They didn't have a CD player or even knew what to do with the CDs. And to top it off they were also missing their keys, they had to confront the neighbors about taking these too, but the mother said they didn't have them. So they got a locksmith to change all the locks on the building and their cars and house and a week later the mother came by with the keys. Steve also went to Philly and N.Y. and saw Zeke, bit time drug dealer now, going off the deep end. He also went down to Ajijic and said our house was totally run down, really depressing. Then i met Mark at Bentley's. Had a scandal at his friend's wedding in Austin. Evidently the groom went to a strip club the night before the wedding and it caused a huge scene. Called Susanna, ends up she's coming out here but it's the weekend i'm going diving in San Carlos. O.k. more procrastination, out of this slump (right!).
Thursday's lab was really cool. I got to witness that moment of discovery, the "hey, it works" thing. We were making motors out of a straw, a spool and a watch. Some of the students got really frustrated as they watched others get theirs to work and they couldn't, then finally they'd got theirs to work and they would let out a little shriek. Or those that were too cool and nonchalant to get excited trying to suppress their grins as their motors churned at great speeds. Some just didn't want to leave when 6:00 rolled around. Friday and Saturday did a lot of reading, still behind. Saturday evening i made a tub of guacamole then went first to Juliette and Giselle’s. They both seemed to be sleeping as i had to knock a few times. A strange two they are. They seemed almost nervous. I gave Giselle 2 tapes and her stories which i’ve been meaning to give back to her. It was a weird scene so i split to the Jesses which was even more of a weird scene being that Brett was there. They were all hanging out on the front porch, both Jesses, Martin, George, Gwynn and Brett. They all said hi except Brett who stormed off into the house. I just ignored the whole thing. Zo was smoking a cigarette and was in a weird mood. So i left to Jesus's house, all the way on Treat St by Country Club and Prince. Awesome house. It was a little boring at first waiting for people to show up, then Lydia showed up with Nitesh and his sister. She brought a waft of patchouli in with her. Beautiful, soft clear-brown skin, dark penetrating eyes, long black hair and a free-spirit air about her. I couldn't figure out why she was with Nitesh, besides—as Michelle told me—to get a free trip to India. I was making bets with Shaheen about stupid things, like who was wearing underwear or what people's signs were and i guessed Lydia and Patrick's right. They had hamburgers and i just ate tons of guacamole, potato salad, pasta salad, onions, carrots, ice cream, brownies, etc. all washed down with beer of course. Lydia went off into the "moon-bathing" patio so i followed her. She's got a cool philosophy, she's from Costa Rica, spent a bunch of times working on farms, spend a year in Ireland. I could tell Nitesh was irked that i was talking to her. He kept coming out in his black boots, all stern and serious. Everybody got fairly plastered and we danced around doing stupid stuff. The party didn't disperse til 2 or 3, then the long 5-mile bike ride home through the brisk air that sobers you up. Got woken up at 9 a.m. by C, guess we're going climbing.
Oct 12 (Zo's b-day)
"I feel like i'm swimming in molasses. I feel like i'm literally "mentally retarded". My brain is in suspension. I'll try to read and space out or get nappy. So i'll put my head down to nap but then i don't sleep so i open my eyes to read and feel sleepy again. In silent desperation, a slow painful death. On a somewhat cheerier note, went climbing yesterday. C came by and picked me up and we went to Himmel where the A team was playing Phoenix masters. Shaheen and Nick seemed like they'd be a while so C and i took off via Taco Bell and Summit Hut. I think maybe i've finally figured her out. She's got this twisted love/hate fascination with lesbians and seems like she's repressing a lot of it. I don't know, maybe i'm way off. Anyways, we went to Windy Point and top-roped High Karate, a 5.7+. I did it then she started to do it and Shaheen and Nick show up. She got about ½ way up and peeled off and penjy'ed about 8 feet across the rock. She tried again but gave up cuz she was too nervous. Nick tried it but didn't get very far either. So i figured i'd find something easier. Found this 5.6 called Little Piece of Schwork which i led though it had minimal protection. Both Nick and C did it then Shaheen did it and we top-roped Party Pooters. By this time it was getting dark. C started to go up around the side (not the line of bolts). She got into that Chimney system and decided she should do the easier way up the chimney. Then she started screaming "snake!" and freaking out. I took up the slack and told her to jump around out onto the face where she was supposed to be anyway. It took some convincing but she eventually did, but she just clung to the rock crying hysterically. She didn't want to be lowered down, said she needed to finish this and not "quit". But she couldn't climb up, so i basically hoisted her up with the rope and she eventually made it up, crying the whole way. After she got down and calmed down she said she'd always remember this (in a positive way, for getting over her fear). The sunset was unbelievable, like a blood clot. The full was rising on the opposite horizon and the city lights flickered below. It was a perfect night to rappel off Beaver wall. So we went over and set up the rope. I had been up there since the lightning episode. Shaheen went first, disappearing into the darkness. It was a rush, in total airborne suspension by moonlight, with Tucson below. We went down to South Tucson to eat at Mi Nidito's. Excellent. I was too tired (and had no $) to see H.R.
Today was unproductive. Just read over and over about tensors. Took Zo out to lunch at G-moz for her b-day. Had a good talk, clarified a lot of things, mostly good vibes going between us. I got extremely depressed in the afternoon and evening. I wish it would go away.
Oct 16, 1992—San Carlos, Mexico
I am sleeping out on a patio of some hotel in San Carlos. The stars are beautiful, as are the crickets which i can hear over the drone of the A.C. which is blowing warm air on me, but i can't take the frigid meat locker inside.
Anyway, last week, trudging through more sludge, time seems to just go by and i never seem to have time to do the things i want to do. So what's new? Basic human predicament. Funny thing is i can do things when the deadline is cutting close. Wednesday had a meeting with Dr Hill, Ron, Zong, Jie and Nitesh about this absolute diameter measurement paper we are supposed to be writing. Kind of a round the room update... so what have i done? Well.... I haven't done shit. I couldn't judge their reaction. That's how Dr Hill is. The meeting cut into a T.A. meeting about RC circuits which was painfully boring and luckily cut short by Mechanics class... well, i thought luckily, but 15 minutes into that i was wishing i had a gun to shoot myself. It was suffering sitting through that. And right after that colloquium. Trudging in sludge. Thursday was Sather's b-day. Did my lab which went well, then met everyone at Ben's Genitals. Hung out mostly with Mark and Rich, the others were rowdily singing songs. Too much tension in that group, Zo was acting a bit weird to me, vaguely distracted, but i didn't care. They were off to another bar and The Rock to see Room to Move but i was getting tired of that whole scene so went to Bentley's. Ronnie was there, i like her a lot, she's got everything going for her, except her boyfriend, isn't that always the story?
Friday was Natl errand day. Photocopied articles, read them, took off this dive shop on Campbell but they charged too much so (after a stop to slurp and Ultimate smoothie and chat with Adam) i went all the wall to N. First Ave at River, to Desert Divers. Got totally fixed up. When the guy heard i was a friend of Ignacio he said don't bother with the deposit. Then i had to carry it all the way back, ended up WEARING the B.C. as a backpack! Most of been pretty funny looking, like i was SCUBA diving through the streets. People were giving me funny looks like i was some crazy cosmonaut commando. At one stoplight people were saying stuff to me so i put the regulator in my mouth. I tried to take sidestreets but they wouldn't go through, so took Stone all the way, at least 5 miles. Biking like a madman. Oh, yah, just to add to my mileage, i had biked to school before then, all the way down cuz i forgot my NAUI card, then all the way back up. Then dropped the stuff off and biked to school to hand in my assignment (looked up and just saw a long-lasting meteor, and that moon!).
Back home, via Food Conspiracy to buy fruits and nuts. George picked me up at 2:30, We hung out with the mod scooter guy waiting for Holly who was an hour later. Finally we were off but kept having to coordinate with this guy Olin who was in a separate truck. I was in the back of George's extended truck. AM PM, Dunkin Donuts, finally Nogales. Got our visas in 2 seconds but had to wind through insane detours through the suburbs. Got to the 21 km checkpoint and ended up Olin's car was in his father's name and they were harassing him big time and there was nothing we could do about it. After an hour of pleading our case, Olin had to turn back, though we stole Holly, a fun asset haha. We made it here and now i'm psyched to sleep.
Oct 18 (back to Tucson)
[in shaky handwriting]. Hard to write back here in George's truck, cruising at 80 mph on potholed roads. Friday night we got in late, i slept out on the porch. Woke up with the sun right on me, Fuck this. Went to breakfast at Rosa's Cantina then went to the beach, Lalo Cove, where 2 Americans disappeared recently and they found their car burning in Nogales. San Carlos is nicer than i expected, lots of cool rock formations and crystal clear aqua-marine water and off-shore islands. The water temp was perfect, 86°. We geared up and went out, had to swim out quite a ways to get to the good shit. Out at this point there was this trench where we went down. Break on through to the other side. It's amazing how much life is under water. The second we got in Ignacio caught an octopus. It squirmed in his hands then inked him and sped away. We saw some puffers and got them to puff up. Also saw a big moray. The little trench was cool, only about 40 feet down but the walls went straight up covered with cool and colorful things. We were down almost an hour and 15 minutes. Excellent dive. After that we got some Tecate and chilled by the pool. Very chill. Quiet. Siesta time. The only sounds were stray cats walking around. Eventually rolled up and went down to the dock. Met our "leaders" Sean and some other studly fat divers and these 2 girls Trish and Melanie. Melanie was completely rockin. We hung out in this restaurant and then went out to the boat. Went out along the coast. It was dark and clear. Went up on the roof, the stars were incredible. The milky way went from horizon to horizon. So full of stars. And the ocean. Totally reminded me of (Just stopped to get rice and beans)... the Adelaar [boat we crewed on in the South Pacific]. Finally got to the site. Got our shit together and i was the first to jump in. My first night dive. Jumped into the blackness. My B.C. was inflated so i stayed afloat until George and Ignacio jumped in. We all had our flashlights and glowsticks, besides that the only other light was the shimmering of the moon through the surface. It was only about 30 feet deep. It was incredible, like being an astronaut on another planet. Talk about travelling. The ocean floor was teaming with life, all sorts of fish, eels, puffers, urchins, sea stars, anemones, long striped worms... etc. The coolest thing was that the fish were all in a daze, ½ sleeping. Their eyes were open (no eyelids) but you could reach out and pet them. Sometimes you could even pick them up and hold them. Then sometimes they'd snap out of it and scurry away. The whole atmosphere was just insanely other worldly. We only had 2000 P.S.I. which lasted us about 45 minutes. When we came up we were quite a ways from the boat and had to swim back. Once again, up to the upper deck to gaze at stars and phosphorescence. Went to Papas Tapas afterwards and had excellent shrimp and a lot of beer. I was in a mood to go out (Papas Tapas was cheesy, loud and touristy) but we had a 7:00 dive (not me, i didn't make the list). I especially wanted to go out if we could find Melanie. Went by their room but the lights were out. Oh well, sat with George on the patio drinking beer and eventually crashed on the file floor to be woken up by Trish "what are you doing on the floor?" Hey, not gonna complain, free place to crash. Got up and rode with them as for as La Posada. Chilled on the beach a while letting the steady rhythm lull me back, then got some breakfast, studied all afternoon and now i am cramped in the back of George's truck. And of course we got searched at the border... that's 3 times in a row now for me. Getting back into the swing, my brain finally functioning semi-properly and i'm pretty happy. Just in time for my Quantum test tomorrow morning.
Went to return the SCUBA shit, again riding with the gear on all the way to 1st and River like i was diving through Tucson. Had my credit card and everything and he's all "oh, you're with SCUBA cats? O.k. c-ya. That's a whole weekend of diving for free! Didn't pay the rentals, the boat dive or for the room, just chipped in for gas. And no skin off anyone else's back. I was just a walking piece of luggage along for the ride. Made up for it the other night at Tucson Eat Yourself when i got some Indian Curry for $3 and i hand him a $20 and (he had a cast on one arm) hands me back $107. Holy shit, that took a lot to say, "eerr, much as i could use100 bucks right now, i only gave you a $20." If it was B of A then maybe i would of, but it was the U of a Indian Club.
I was reading my journal from last year and it was this time last year that it got freezing cold. It doesn't seem that way now. I was also stressing out about my QM exam (remember Halloween night?). Now I'm the chill master. Saw Lydia today, she spotted me and called out my name. Got her number. Maybe i'll do a first for Derek and ask her out on a date.
Why is it people always come and go in the rain? Or why is rain always associated with travel? Every time i come and go from Tucson (west) it is always a weird rainy day. And now Susanna is on her way here. I'm a sponge. I have absorbed so much mechanics in the past 3 hours it is not even funny. It's almost too bad Susanna is coming, cuz i could just keep going and take advantage of this lucidity when everything makes sense. Maybe it's the weather.
Sunday morning on my front porch with a slice of sunshine splashing on my skin. Susanna got into Tucson at around 11:00. Mark was down at my house and we were waiting for her to call. She called all the way from Sunrise and Craycroft. Mark had just come back from that far north. After phoning back and forth it was decided we'd just meet her early and i'd spend the night at Mark's house to be up there. So Mark and i still went out to the Shanty where ran into the typical crew. I wanted to go somewhere else but whatever. I saw Nick and C, they were both blitzed and being particularly funny. Nick was freaked out about climbing with Chawn. C is meanwhile cruising around the bar recruiting guys to play Ultimate. They wanted to continue the night at Mi Nidito's but Mark want to bug back to his house via Jack in the Box and we played Sonic Hedgehog before it got too addicting and we realized we could be up all night. I slept on the couch. Woke up at 7 a.m. to Liz calling their mom in Saudi telling her their great grandmother of 99 had died. I read Goldstein as she went back to bed. The original plan was we would go climbing with Liz and Dale "early" but i knew "early" had a different meaning in this household. But Goldstein was coming through, i was still in super absorbent Brauny towel mode, soaking up every piece of sensory input and assimilating with great efficiency. At 9 Susanna calls and they are all ready to go. So i had the chore of waking up Mark. It took him ½ an hour just for him to get out of bed and put clothes on. And of course were totally out of gas. Picked Susanna and her friend Nikki up. They're staying at this house (Martha's sister) that is full of baby toys, i mean full. Every toy imaginable, nauseating. We headed out to Coffee Etc. Decided to stop at Chawn's house to get some gear that he had of mine (and borrow some of his). He was supposed to be on a hike but his car was broke so we dragged him along. As we were leaving there were ominous clouds hanging over Mt Lemmon. We figured we'd go anyway for the ride. We stopped at Green Slabs since it was lower. The rock was a little wet but it looked relatively harmless. I led Monkey Business (5.6). Then Chawn cleaned it and stayed on top while i rapped down to belay. Then Susanna went up, she did great. It was starting to look worse and there were rumblings of thunder. I was thinking once she got down we'd probably split. She was having a few problems getting on rappel. Then there was this "sssshh" wall of white noise from the distance. Up on the ridge maybe 5 miles away. We could see hail coming down HARD and sweeping down towards us at great speed. It hit us within 15 seconds, an instant white-out of hail. I was still belaying Susanna so couldn't let go of the rope. I couldn't look up to see what she was doing as i would get blinded. I did grab a wet sweatshirt and put it on (while Mark held the rope). This little ravine we were in became a river and we had to move these other 2 guys gear that was about to get swept away. There was lightning and it was close and i was worried as hell for Chawn and Susanna who were still up above. I could see the shape of Susanna crouched in a crack. Lightning strikes. I was shivering violently. Mark and Nikki went back to the car. All i could do was stand there, holding the rope in case Susanna was still on belay. I hard Chawn screaming and at first i thought he was screaming "help" but he was just making sure i was still spotting Susanna. It let up a little bit and i lowered her down rather than her rappelling. She was coming down on her knees. I kept trying to tell her to stand up right. Easier said than done your first time with a wet rope in a hail storm under conditions where you just want to get off as soon as possible, with lightning and thunder all around. She got down and i threw my wet sweatshirt on her. Then Chawn came down and by then it had let up. There was still those 2 guys up there who used our rope to rappel off. It was also one their's first time and he came down on his knees. By the time they got down the sun was shining on us. We all, dripping wet like drowned rats, got a good laugh back at the car. we dropped Susanna and Nikki off then went to Mark's and waited for him while he got ready for work. Then he drove us to get a voltage regulator and to Chawn's house. He fixed the jeep while i sorted our cold wet gear. I was still shirtless for lack of dry clothes. We didn't have time to stop at my house, so i wore Chawn's Wildcats shirt. Yee-haw, felt like that scene in Pulp Fiction. His jeep still didn't go so we attempted to push start, a major chore. Huffing and puffing back and forth. I slipped in the gravel and fell on my face. Never got it started so just took Mendy's yacht... with "My Yot" vanity plates. I was in the back seat and all sorts of hot is coming through the crack. Like burning hot. "Oh, that's just an exhaust leak." Yikes. The seat was all melted. It barely made it. I thought it would fall apart. And course we were totally late. But brought 2 six-pacs of Moosehead to wash down the spaghetti and cake. Then Martha, Nikki and Susanna and Chawn and I went to Wild Wild West via Mark's house but he wasn't ready so he just met us there. Danced semi-sarcastically w/ the rednecks to M.C. Hammer and even that Eddy Grant line dance song where they all dance in unison. Scary, what's the point of dancing if everyone does the same thing? Played foosball and generally hung out waiting for Mark. We finally took off then saw his car in the parking lot so went back in to retrieve him and Rich. Then went downtown. It was too late to go to Club Congress so we walked around and ran into Mia and Jay who were going to the cup so we went with them but there was no room for 9 people. Got a few 6-pacs of Heineken and hung out at my place. This morning i rode to Brian's, hung out there. Actually, the first time i've been there. I don't know why i don't hang out with him more. Then we went to Coffee Etc. and met with the whole troop—Becky, Craig and their little kids. Long breakfast. Said our goodbye's. I think Brian got some connections into E.N.T. which is cool. Dawn is already approaching. Ultimate time.
Just got back from a "date" with Zo, an official dinner, then movie date. Went to Char's then saw Singles. How appropriate, the movie should have been called Couples. Both couples were together from the beginning, would break up but at the end both ended up together. Very predictable and cheesy. And here Zo is with her head on my shoulder and it feels so good and comfortable. It would be so easy to fall back into it. I'm thinking no, this time would be different, but then again, does everybody really need somebody? Or is there dignity to being "Single"?
This week was stress spazz. I had a Math Method's take home which was completely evasive and vague and hours of "chasing indices" and translating between his Spiegels and Aufkins notation. Saw Mary's Danish last night. For about 20 seconds they were completely on. The rest of the time they were truly marginal. Typical crew, Yar, Brian, Rich, John and Alan... "Freshman dorm friends" (except me) that still dwell in the security of that male bonding trip. Where do i fit in? Spent beaucoup bux today on climbing gear, cuz tomorrow is the infamous Bean Fest in Cochise Stronghold. Halloween theme, climbing in costume.
[journal continues in post #745]