last glass...dusty buckets...parched e-lips...sponge...drip...drop

2003-06-11 - 5:14 p.m.: listerine 2

26. i've always been obsessed with spaces� ever since i was a little kid. i loved boxes, holes, cupboards� anything cavern-like�and if it had a door, bonus points. we moved around a lot, but one of the houses (the 7-year house) was over 100 years old and had a couple of really neat secrets. there was a tiny door in the back of my closet that led to a tiny space with a stair-shaped ceiling. i would hide in there� bring a flashlight�read� draw� just sit and pretend to be hiding from something or someone. i don't think my parents even knew about it until the day my mother came in to help me "clean my room." (i was a major packrat� kept everything� "cleaning my room" meant, basically, going through everything i owned and throwing out everything without a memory attached to it. somewhere in the depths of that hell, i heard an "oh!" it was found. i was told not to use this hiding place anymore because what if the door locked? what if the stairs caved in? what if i was stuck in there and the house caught on fire? what if i passed out from heat exhaustion and no one could find me? i remember pointing out that now that she knew where it was, she'd know where to look for me. no. forbidden. i would still open the door occasionally and look in�show it off to special visitors� i never went inside again. i've broken almost every rule my parents have ever set for me. without regret. but this i didn't touch. i had nightmares for a while about the house melting like a candle�it never caught on fire�the wax from it being sucked into that little room like water down a drain. i haven't thought about that in a long time.

27. my most painful-to-recall memory is from spring of 4th grade. i was a "new kid" at this school� and was recruited almost immediately into a pretty tight group of friends... angela, melissa, julie, jill, kara, jessica and erica. i don't remember exactly what happened or why�. but for some reason erica was suddenly and unceremoniously cast out of the group. things got cruel. notes flew in a girlish sort of war game. i was still a relative stranger so never said or did much, but i sure as hell didn't take the side of the underdog... i know that. i don't remember who had the idea (and i really, really hope it wasn't me) but someone decided that it would be a good idea to concoct an evil-smelling mixture of condiments, ammonia, vinegar? i don't even know what else� put it in a cup and set it in her gym locker on a friday afternoon. the idea was that the odor would strengthen over the weekend, causing a great deal of embarrassment on monday. it did. she went home crying. the group broke apart shortly after that� over the summer, i think. angela and melissa stayed best friends. julie and jill paired up. kara joined the marching band and jessica went punk and started painting her fingernails black. i wandered again� i don't know what happened to erica. she didn't respond to any of our ensuing overtures of friendliness� i don't know if she ever responded to friendliness again. i would like to think that it was just an unpleasant blip in her life� that she got over it quickly. i would like to think that it was just an unpleasant blip in mine. but how *do* we get over things, anyway? i haven't had or belonged to what i would call a "group of friends" since then. i wonder why.

28. i feel weird about sifting through my past. it doesn't feel real. ever.

29. i feel weird when i recognize myself in books or songs or any other fixed display� it makes me look for reasons to say that it's NOT me� that i'm NOT like that, no matter what it is.

30. i hate being called nice.