Journalist. Mother. Bunny enthusiast. Pop culture junkie.

Journalist. Mother. Bunny enthusiast. Pop culture junkie.

Monday, October 28, 2013

That One Word

He was the most physically perfect human I had ever seen in real life.

Yellow blonde hair. Baby blue eyes. A chiseled face that couldn't have turned out more beautiful had it been crafted by a meticulous sculptor.

But he was filled with hate.

In middle school, that hate was directed at me.

You see, Jake was the most popular boy in school. He was at the very top of the food chain. Even his cool friends didn't seem as cool as him. None of them, not even the beautiful cheerleaders, could match him in the looks department.

It was my first day of eighth grade. I had just transferred from another school. Because of our last names, Jake had to sit next to me in homeroom. He took one look at me and sneered, "I have to sit next to the squaw, great."

I was so stunned and mortified, I didn't even correct him that I wasn't Native American.

Jake seemed so repulsed by the mere presence of my face that he couldn't help his outbursts every time he saw me, whether it was in class or in the hallways.

I had dandruff. My long brown hair was ratty. I was weird. Shut up, what you are looking at squaw?

All his words.

Of course, I wasn't the only victim.

Other kids were disgusting for being "fat." Another girl had "Muppet lips." The boy sitting behind us in homeroom "smelled" because he was "poor."

Out of all his insults, the one that had the greatest and most long-lasting impression on me was when he glared in disgust at my face during homeroom one day and called me "ugly."

It broke my heart.

Nobody had ever called me that to my face before. It confirmed my biggest fear, the one gnawing at the back of my mind since elementary school. I was ugly.

It's amazing how one insult, no matter how untrue, becomes your truth. Your shrunken confidence allows it to scar you, to brand you.

A billion people afterwards could tell you you're the most beautiful woman in the world, but you'll never believe them. Because when you were 13, the most popular boy in school called you ugly. And you believed him first.

A year later, in high school, Jake and I didn't have any classes together and he eventually moved on to mocking the physically and mentally handicapped kids. When he passed me in the hallways, he pretty much forgot I even existed. I was relieved.

My dad's job was transferred to another state and I moved away at 16, never to see Jake again.

But I still see Jake's face and hear his words when I want to forget them. I don't believe people when they say I'm attractive. Instead, I see Jake telling me otherwise. Even now, in my late 20s.

I don't know what angers me more: the words themselves or that I allowed those words to destroy me.

I was visiting a childhood friend at the hospital a couple days ago. She had her appendix removed.

I was sitting by her bedside, reminiscing about people we used to know in middle school, when she suddenly exclaimed, "do you know about Jake?"

I looked up, startled.

"Know what?" I asked.

She pulled out her iPhone and showed me Jake's Facebook profile. I had never seen it before because, obviously, I would never friend request him.

I wouldn't have believed it if I hadn't seen it with my own eyes.

Jake is gay.

Not just gay, but he's an entire fruit salad.

Photos revealed him kissing a haughty looking male model next to a Fashion Week runway, drinking a pink cocktail on a sandy beach, and straddling a pole at a gay bar. His interests include "poodles," "fashion," and "cuddling." A status revealed he's "here and queer and you bitches better get used to it." He lives in New York City and he works for Vogue.

During high school, Jake always dated the cheerleaders. It never occurred to me that he really wanted the football players.

Seeing the de-closeted Jake in front of me, on that little screen, didn't change my opinion of him. That look, that mean streak, that blinding arrogance, remains in his icy blue eyes. He might be gay, but he's still Jake.

He's still the boy who ripped my heart out and left it bleeding in my hands with one little insult.

And I still haven't put it back.

I hope one day I do.

Because I want to believe I'm beautiful.

Friday, October 11, 2013

I've been exposed.

Several months ago, a blog friend of mine accidentally posted a link to his lingerie blog to his personal Facebook page.

It freaked him out so much, he deleted his entire blog. This was a good blog too. An encyclopedia of lingerie, I used to joke to him. It was one of the most impressive fashion blogs I knew. Several years had been put into it.

My friend had good reason to freak the fuck out. He was an alpha male with an explosive secret. If I remember correctly, only his wife knew about his guilty pleasure: wearing pantyhose underneath his jeans. His friends, his family, and his coworkers finding out about it? That would have ruined his life. I felt bad for him. While I was deeply saddened he was leaving the blogosphere, I understood he really didn't have a choice.

There's nothing like a cold splash of water in your face to wake you up.

Recently, I discovered that somebody I didn't want to find out about my blog found out about it.

Of course, my situation isn't as worrisome as my friend's. In fact, I really don't have a big secret to hide at all.

But my privacy has been compromised. A large group of people I didn't want to know my inner most thoughts now know this blog exists. My soul is exposed.

I have always been comfortable writing about my life on this blog. It's kind of like getting to be naked in public and not worrying about it. That feeling is incredible. It's freedom.

But now that feeling has been snuffed out. My privacy has been violated.

I suppose it's my fault. I started this blog anonymously, but with photos and stories and whatnot, it eventually got more personal. I kept that distance from any identification, however. But I grew careless. I linked it somewhere I really shouldn't have. Silly me.

It's the same mentality that has kept me from completing my memoir. Some of my stories are so intensely personal, so morbidly raw, that I can't bring myself to write them down next to my name. So I leave the book unfinished, sitting immobile in a folder on my laptop. I'm not ready to have everyone in my life exposed to everything in my life.

So, what do I do now? I thought seriously about deleting this blog. But that would be pointless. They've probably already read everything. And why should I delete something I'm proud of?

I've thought about abandoning this blog. My readership has dwindled significantly. I'm not passionate about doing biographies anymore. I already spend a lot of hours working on stories for a newspaper and getting paid shit for it. The thought of putting even more hours into a doomed starlet post, and not get paid anything for it, makes me want to vomit.

But a part of me is so attached to this blog. It's like my child. How can I give it up? I just can't. It makes me so sad to even think about it. Even if it has become a ghost town. Even if I don't post here very often anymore.

I really shouldn't let this group of people, who now know this blog exists, win. I mean, I need to stop giving a fuck what everyone in my life thinks about me. I need to have courage.

Because this is ME.

I shouldn't be ashamed of being human. Of having feelings and experiences and thoughts that aren't pure, perfect.

I'm a romantic. I'm a bitch. I'm a storyteller. I'm hurt. I'm exhausted.

But more importantly,

I'm hope.

Monday, October 7, 2013

The Pretty Girl Complex

You know a girl like Sara.

A pretty face without much substance.

She's not very smart. She's not very witty. She's not very original.

Sara lacks that special core, that uniqueness. Her personality is based solely on how people react to her outer beauty.

Growing up, she didn't take time to nourish her soul. She didn't read books. She didn't treat people nicely. Everyone kept saying she was beautiful, so she knew that was her power. That's what made her special. That's what made her better than everyone else.

Boldly placing yourself on top of a superficial pedestal is easy when you think everyone else is beneath you. Beauty trumps brains. It trumps money. It trumps creativity.

Sara craves people worshipping her. She only feels human when men are fawning over her. She only feels worthwhile when other women are jealous.

While most people have hobbies, Sara spends a lot of time staring in the mirror, putting on makeup or just admiring herself.

Guys are obsessed with her. It makes their day when she flirts with them. They tell their girlfriend "she's not my type" but secretly wish Sara was in her place. They would ditch their girl in a second if Sara batted her curled Maybelline eyelashes in distress. It would make their dick feel bigger to have such a stunning girl on their arm. A girl who looks like she stepped out of a movie.

While Sara is flaunting her youthful, trendy beauty, other girls her age feel invisible.

They don't realize they're attractive too, but in a more fascinating way. They're most beautiful when you take the time to study every crevice of their face. Those oddities in their features, the kind that might seem imperfect next to Sara, are what make them perfect. These girls have bumps on their noses. Freckles on their cheeks. Gaps between their teeth. Dark, creamy skin. Their beauty is so poetic, it's mesmerizing.

But immature guys don't pay attention to real beauty. They're programmed to want the obvious, whether its Heidi Klum or Megan Fox.

And while most girls hate Sara, they don't realize how much it would suck to be her.

Guys don't chase after Sara because she's interesting. They chase after her because she won the gene pool lottery. They don't want to learn everything about her. They just want to fuck her.

Eventually, Sara will no longer be able to triumph over the other girls.

Even her beauty won't hold a candle to reality.

Men might be attracted to shiny objects, but they get bored with them quickly. Real men want a partner who can stimulate them physically, mentally, and emotionally. They want someone with fiery passion. They want someone who can make intelligent conversation. They want someone who can make them laugh. They want someone who shares the same interests. They want someone who isn't bloated with arrogance. They want a lover who is their other half.

A best friend and a soul mate, wrapped up in one.

It might take a while for them to figure it out, but they eventually do.

And that's why it sucks to be Sara.

She never wins in the end.