05 December 2006


and with a whole world full of things that need writing about, at that! laila and little yousuf are still in egypt waiting to get home to gaza. oaxaca needs my attention. our president is the worst in the history of the u.s. AND a criminal. darfur. global warming is getting a day in court. and yet, i feel like if i write about any of those things today, i will break down into a sobbing, muddled mess.

i'm going to go live in the past for a minute - want to come?

years and years ago, back when i was still make-up kara, a friend said to me, "why is it that when i need to go to the store for bread and milk, i go to the store, get my bread and milk, and go home - but when you go to the store for bread and milk, it just so happens that the circus is in town and you come home with bread, milk, and a monkey?"

what happened to me? i'm not even kidding you, while i never really did come home with a monkey (how cool would THAT be?), i always seemed to attract or at least be in the near vicinity of some pretty random, wild, and sometimes funny, even enlightening stuff! no more.

in fact, i've been spending the day trying to figure out what to write while bebe naps. this is what i've got so far:


has my worst fear come to roost? has my brain gone stagnant? ohgoodgod, please say it ain't so! where is clever, funny, always the detective getting to the bottom of things kara gone?!?!? I WANT HER BACK! ok. deep breath.

people used to flock to the bar on the nights that i'd work in search of the latest adventures and or the political ramblings of kara. and i always had one or two that had come about over the course of the prior few days, without fail. if not, something would always surely find us at the bar.

here's an example. true story.

will and i decided to watch the film 'waking life' one sunday eve. (if you haven't seen this film, you should. AND if you haven't, you might wanna scoot on over to that link and read a bit about it before proceeding for future reference.). i was blown away. the conversation following the film went something like this:

me: that was AWESOME! i can't believe i waited so long to watch it! (i then continued to prattle on for several minutes about all of the theories - what is real? are we all really just constantly dreaming? etc.) so what did you think?

will: it was pretty good.

me: just pretty good?

will: didn't you talk about all of that with your friends when you were younger?

me: huh? are you kidding? our conversations consisted of makeup, hair, clothes, television and boys!
(i think it was then that i was terrified to have a daughter someday)

will: really? we used to spend hours talking about philosophical questions, almost daily.
(now i was feeling horribly slighted that these topics never even came up)

but i digress.

at the time, i worked the 5pm -3am shift where i'd do double duty as the manager/bartender. it was a cool little hole in the wall for the area that it was located in - the country club plaza - or as i like to call it, the plazie. or huge outdoor strip mall with o.k. architecture (this one always made my boss cringe). the plaza used to be almost cool. it was more of a community - with a grocer, gas station, corner drug store, locally owned biz, etc. -- now it's just a gigantic mall, 90% filled with store you can find in any city of america. touristy types loved it for the upscale shopping and dining. i loved it because it was a perfect place for me to rabble rouse. plus i got to play psychologist daily. :) we also had a fair amount of regulars that lived in one of the many apartment buildings nearby. a few years ago, i figured out that it had once been a huge area for pig farming. how perfect! some things never change... anyhoo - "my" bar was laid back in comparison of the rest of the establishments. i worked there for 10 years.

but back to the monday following my seeing waking life. (are you getting a sense of how speaking with me in person might go?) i'd long been interested in dreams, especially the jungian theory of them - that the unconscious uses our dreams as a way to introduce something into our consciousness.

i woke up monday after a night of surreal dreams that i can't quite recall - but i found myself stuck in them. three deep. each time, i'd begin to dream lucidly and tell myself that i needed to wake up. i'd think i'd awoken, only to realize that i was still dreaming. i finally did wake up. i went about my normal routine, feeling as if i were still asleep and dreaming. so i did as the film suggested several times before leaving the house - i flipped a light switch. supposedly, if you are in a dream state, the lights won't turn on or off when the switch is flipped. i headed up to my neighborhood coffee house to read and chit chat before heading into work. it was summer, so i could sit out on the patio for a bit and acclimate.

at the coffee house, all sorts of happenings made me want to search for light switches. the barista asked me if i'd ever seen waking life as she was making my decaf mocha. as it had come out at least 3 years before i'd seen it, i laughed and said, "yeah, last night." i told her i wasn't sure if i was still asleep or if i was awake. she said the film had done the same thing to her.

overheard conversations found me hearing two other couples, sitting at different tables at opposite ends of the patio, talking about their dreams.

finally, on to work. a couple that had recently moved into town and had become regulars showed up shortly after my shift began. they were just popping in to say hi - they were out for a walk. i asked how they were doing and the guy said that he'd felt like he'd been asleep and dreaming all day and had i ever seen the film waking life? yeah, i know! i walked right over to the box that we kept peanuts in and flipped the heat lamp switch on and off. we all got a good laugh and i said, "let me tell ya about my day." the odds, the odds... kinda gives some credence to the idea of the collective unconscious, eh?

1 a.m. -- it's been a slow night. an older guy came in that i'd never seen before. he had an odd look in his eyes and a presence that showed up before he did. he was american indian, with this gorgeous black hair down to his waist. he came up to the bar and checked out the people sitting on either side of him. long and slow like. then he looked at me. i said, "hi, what can i get you?"
"any particular flavor?"
i poured him a draw, made change and he muttered thanks and headed out to the patio. everyone was weirded out, but for some reason, i wasn't.

i watched him pull a chair from a table and put the back of it up against the fence, facing the patio door. there was one other table on the patio, full of regulars that came in every monday night after their shift at some sort of psychiatric facility for kids. they were to his left. he just stared at them as he drank. several minutes passed and i looked out again. he looked like he'd fallen asleep, sitting up, beer in hand. i turned around and through the open door i heard i heard glass shattering. the man still looked to be asleep, but there was broken glass everywhere around him, as if the beer glass had imploded. my co-worker, knowing i was heading out to see what had happened told me i'd better just call security, that he was scary. i didn't.

when i got to him, there was glass all over his hand and scattered around him. it was as if the glass had shattered in his hand from him squeezing it too hard. i kneeled down in front of him and sort of pushed his knee, saying "hey, mister, are you ok?" he stirred a bit and started mumbling in a language that i didn't understand. i repeated myself and pushed his knee a bit more. he opened his eyes and continued to speak the language to me. when he took a breath, i told him that i wanted to look at his hand, that his glass broke and i wanted to be sure that he was ok. he looked completely frightened. i told him that everything was ok, i just wanted to be sure he wasn't cut.

he held his hand up to me and as i was checking it over he said,
"am i woken

seriously, time stopped for a split second. i said, "yeah, you're woken. and you don't seem to be hurt. that's good, huh?"
then he says,
"are you an angel?"
to this i laughed, "well, i'd like to think so, but there's a whole bar full of people in there that would say otherwise!"
he smiled.
i asked him where he lived, if he needed me to get him a cab.
he asked if i was going to call the police.
"now why would i call the police?"
"lots of people are scared of me. they call the police."
"well, i'm not scared of you. you think i'm an angel, after all. and you haven't done anything wrong."
he told me he was just passing through, that he wasn't from here, that he wasn't sure where he was going. then he said he should leave. i made him a cup of coffee to take with him. after he left, i switched the peanut light switch again, just to be sure.

we are all connected.

even to these dudes:

p/s - planned parenthood is giving away free ec tomorrow. spread the word. word.

Labels: , ,


FAIR USE NOTICE: This site may contain copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We have posted it here in an effort to advance the understanding of environmental, political, human rights, economic, democratic, scientific, social justice and other issues. We believe this constitutes a 'fair use' of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond 'fair use', you must obtain permission from the copyright owner. The material in this site is provided for educational and informational purposes only.