I like to write but I dont know if that’s true. I like to talk to myself. But it’s never for myself. I talk to myself like someone else can hear it. Observations and sermons and apologies and stories I haven’t told Lucy or Lucy yet. If someone else can hear I think it’s John Waters. Oh the things he knows about me. I talk to myself well. Not well like kind, but well like…well. I should start being kinder. Maybe I will now that I know its John Waters who is listening and I like John Waters. I’ll look in the mirror and be like “cool mustache!”
My most beautiful words never reach the page, though. I make it to my 11:30 am english lecture, which is actually a film history class because my Professor is a pop culture critic who looks like Bill Murray and hates Damien Chazelle, and I sit in my chair, and I sweat in my chair, and I’ll leave a really questionable looks-like-I-peed-myself-out-of-an-abundance-of-love-for-Fred-Astaire sweat mark in my chair, and I take out my journal and my pen and I go to scribe all the stanzas I spun in my head as I was walking or waking or curling my eyelashes to the tune of the jazz music my roommate was playing on the other side of the bathroom door and for some reason the correct words never touch down. Lost in translation and there’s no middle man to blame but myself. Maybe it’s because I fractured my writing arm in a bike fall in fifth grade?
Im less funny. More mean. Less creative. Less interesting. It seems that my head is fairy tales and poems and scenes and songs and stories and good jokes that would get good laughs or at least good head nods about things like Tonya Harding and thinking all men of a certain age and a certain salt and pepper beard on the sidewalk in manhattan are Ray Romano and earnest confessions of love and appreciation for my friend Sarah but once it hits the page, there is only the truth. “I woke up at 7:39. Mango spears for breakfast. I don’t like this bra. My back hurts. Am I a bad person? Yes. I think I only have one contact in. My professor looks a bit like Bill Murray.”
Man, I love Sarah. I love you Sarah. I really do. I think about when you opened my celsius can for me because I had bitten all my nails to the root. I think about when you forgave me for being a crazy bitch one night while we were trying to make our short film. Skye was funnier in that scene than I could’ve been anyway. You make me laugh. Pumpkin haircut. Snake in your boot. Ugh.
There’s this girl in one of my classes named Van and she is soooo beautiful. So effortlessly beautiful in a way that is quiet but jarring like a heaving breath. A way that girls with cool names like Van can be. I always envy things that seem effortless. Pretty without trying. Funny without trying. Liked without trying. I dislike that urge of mine. Because… really… how beautiful is it to try. I love people who try.
I think trying is really brave. A lot of the time it’s worth a lot more than succeeding. But that’s only when I think about it. When I’m trying to be better.
I want to think that things that people can do only because they’re really trying are of immense value without having to think about it. Which I guess is an oxymoron. Hypocritical. Dissonant. That I want to get over my burning regard for things that you don’t have to try for by thinking not having to try is cool without trying. It’s a gray area. But I hope you understand. I think this is a humble goal. But I’ll have to try. Good on me.
When I talk to John and I, it comes easy. When I write sometimes I have to try. To really try. Maybe that’s it. That’s the worry. That’s the distance. I do like to write. That IS true. I bet Van straightened her hair this morning anyway.