Sunday, October 30, 2005

Teenage Love, Interrupted

My first boyfriend's name was Brian. He romantically confessed his desire for me to be his one true love by asking gruffly, "So, are we going together, or what?"

Brian and I loved each other a lot, or so I thought. I lived in Santa Monica, he lived in Baldwin Hills. Either his mom or my mom would drop us off at each others' house. "Have fun!" my mom would say, waving her hand excitedly as she drove away.

Brian had an interesting home. He lived in Baldwin Hills, which is an affluent part of Los Angeles, but he had a living room with no furniture and an empty pool that was a home to a family of frogs. I so much wanted to ask his mom why the living room was empty, but Brian told me to leave it alone. And the frogs in the pool? "My stepdad's just too fucking lazy to put some water in the pool." Oh.

Brian and I were together a year. He was so into me. We would talk every night on the phone. I knew all of his friends. We were together every weekend. Then suddenly-it stopped. "I'm going to kick it with my friends this weekend." This simple statement was the end of life as I knew it.

I would call, page, and leave messages for Brian over and over and over. He would completely ignore me. I would call at 5 in the morning, 12 midnight-whenever I thought he might be home. I considered the fact that he might be dead, but once his 12 year old brother answered the phone and yelled, "Stop calling! Damn!" I figured if Brian was dead, his brother might have mentioned it.

One day, I didn't get out of bed. It was the week of finals at school, and I, who was an A student, didn't get out of bed. Suddenly, I had the brilliant idea to spend some time in a mental hospital for a vacation from Brian. I walked into the living room and told my mom, "I think I need a break. I want to go to the hospital." "Don't be silly," she answered. "You're not sick." "No, I'm not," I agreed. "But, for some reason I keep wanting to call Brian. I call him all the time. Isn't there something wrong with that?"

After being admitted to UCLA Psychiatric Department I soon learned that it was not a good idea to scream uncontrollably if you want the psychiatrists and nurses to know that you are NOT insane. After walking down a hall and into an unnaturally clean room, I started screaming over and over. I don't belong here, I kept thinking. This is a nuthouse. I'm not crazy-just in love. I kept screaming, and continued screaming as my mom walked out the door and got into her car.

Somehow, after a few days, Brian found out where I was and called the public phone that we were allowed to use. "What are you doing in there?" he asked. "It's all your fault!" I screamed (which made the nurses draw closer to me-note to self: don't scream in the mental hospital or you may be stabbed with sharp needles.) I whispered into the phone, "Don't call me while I'm in here." I hung up the phone and walked down to the small group meeting for girls with eating disorders. I didn't have an eating disorder, but I liked to listen to their stories while eating doughnuts in their prescence.

I was there three days before I was able to sit down with the psychiatrist. He was a man and not very friendly, but I listened hopefully.

Doctor: So, you like to call your boyfriend a lot, right Jaimie?

me: Yes.

Doctor: So, what's a lot?

me: Like, 20-30 times a day.

Doctor: And how does he react?

me: He either yells at me, or doesn't answer.

Doctor: I see here that you are 16. Is this your first boyfriend?

me: Yes.

Doctor: OK. Listen, it is natural for teenagers to break up, and it hurts. Boys are especially indifferent to how their girlfriend might feel.

me: I know that, but we didn't really break up, Doctor. He just stopped calling. (broke down into tears)

Doctor: Well, I'm going to give you some strategies to help you deal with...Brian, right?

me: Yes (between sniffles)

Doctor: (continues)...some strategies to deal with Brian. First of all, you are only allowed to call him once a day. No more. Keep a note by the phone to remind you.

The doctor continued with his strategies, and then told me that he did not believe I had any type of mental disorder. I took a huge sigh of relief as he walked me to the door of his office. "You are quite sensitive," he said. "But believe me, if you stop calling him, he will probably start calling you."

I stayed at UCLA for another week before they let me go. Within the first day of arriving home the telephone rang. My mom and I looked at each other. "Do you want me to get that?" she asked. "No, that's ok." I walked towards the phone and answered it. "Hello?" "Jaimie? It's me. How are you?" It was not Brian, but Francisca, my best friend.

Every year, until I was 23, Brian has called me on my birthday and asked to see me. He somehow manages to always get my phone number, although I've moved four times since we were together. Finally, at age 23, I told him "Please don't call me anymore. You're really stupid. I have no interest in you. Lose my phone number."

Words I never thought I would say. Life is hilarious.

Posted by Jaimie :: 12:55 PM :: 4 Peeked Into My Diary:

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Friday, October 28, 2005

Stand and Deliver

When I was in high school I worked in a shoe store in the mall. Only women worked there, save for one really weird guy who told me he asked his girlfriend to marry him and gave her a ring made of string. Most of us ignored him, and would stand around bored, praying no one would come into the store.

There were a lot of interesting women who worked there. I was only 16, and everyone else was older than me. Two of the girls were Mexican, and two were black. One night, the Mexican girls invited me to go out with them to East L.A. "There's only going to be Mexicans there. Are you comfortable with that?" they asked. "Sure," I said. "I know a little Spanish. I'll be fine." "You look like you could Puerto Rican or something, anyway," one of the girls said. "They won't know the difference."

Later that night we drove on the freeway for what felt like a really, really, really long time (I didn't realize East L.A. was that far from the Westside). We parked on a dark street and started walking towards a parking lot. I looked around. "Where's the party?" I asked. "This is it," one of the girls said with a happy glaze in her eyes. "Oh, and by the way, " she said. "You should probably start speaking Spanish now or at least get an accent because these eses don't really like black people." Now you tell me...

We walked over to the parking lot and it was a bunch of guys sitting around drinking 40's. Please don't let one of these guys talk to me! I silently prayed. I don't know enough Spanish to-

ese: Hola

me: Hola

ese: Como esta?

me: Bien, y usted?

ese: Bien.

I started looking past his shoulder for a hole in the fence to crawl through.

ese: Como te llamo?

me: Si

ese: Que?

Damn, I answered wrong.

me: Lo siento. Me llamo Jaimie.

He gave me a funny look and walked away.

"So, how's it going? You cool?" one of the girls asked me a little too late. "You stupid ass!" I said. "I don't belong here. I'm going to get beat up!" I whined. "Take me back to Santa Monicaaaaaa!!!!"

"Whatever, girl," one of the girls said. "We'll go after I finish this 40 oz." I rolled my eyes and walked away from her and sat on a blue crate by the exit. While I was sitting there silently waiting for them to finish, cursing my coworkers and wishing I had stayed at home, both girls came up to me with a guy and a camera. "This dude wants to take a picture of us," she said. "Come on, let's stand together."

We stood together and posed. "Sonrie" he said.

Posted by Jaimie :: 4:39 PM :: 2 Peeked Into My Diary:

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Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Issues With A Cow

I've decided to continue going to therapy because there is a coworker at my job who, I feel, is a big fat cow and deserves to be slaughtered. My feelings towards this cow/coworker have not been validated or resolved yet. I'm hoping my therapist can help.

Posted by Jaimie :: 8:49 PM :: 4 Peeked Into My Diary:

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Monday, October 24, 2005

Bling! Bling!

Every week my Kindergarten class reads a new "Weekly Reader." This week, the Weekly Reader was about everyone's favorite slaughterer: Christoper Columbus. The magicians (I mean illustrators) at the Weekly Reader publishing company chose to illustrate Mr. CC as a cartoon character with chubby cheeks, and boy, did he have a "rough time sailing the seas", until "Finally, he saw land!" In no place of the very informative
narrative were Native Americans ever mentioned.

Rosa Parks died today. Here she is, getting finger printed over something as ridiculous as refusing to get up out of her seat on a hot Southern bus. Damn! She was tired! I'd like to see someone try that with me now. "Get up! This seat is for white people only!" some random angry white man with red flushed cheeks yells at me. "So?" I would answer. "I'm half-white. Na-na-na-na-na-na!"

Not only would I like to see a white American try that now, but I would also like to see a black person revolt the way we used to. We have become so used to American life the way it is today, that we have become complacent with moderate tolerance. When did we decide that we should replace the word "revolution" with the word *bling*? "Bling" is such an easy word to replace-what about...elevate? "Wow, did you see all that elevation on that young black man today?" one person could say to another. Or how about, "Damn, man, how did you elevate like that? I need to get me some of that!"

So let's stop *blinging* and start elevating. Maybe then, some publishing house in New York will write a Weekly Reader about us too-and every word of it will be true.

Posted by Jaimie :: 9:57 PM :: 2 Peeked Into My Diary:

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Sunday, October 23, 2005

Men Are Kinda Dumb

I recently bought a fly pair of shoes at an unnamed department store. They were sooooo cute, with a 1940's style twist that I loved. I had tried them on in the store and they fit perfectly.

The next day my boyfriend and I planned to go to lunch and a movie. As soon as I stepped out of the car and started walking, I practically fell over. "What's wrong?" he asked. "It's these shoes! They don't fit!" I clung to his arm and he half carried me through the parking structure. "My heel keeps sliding in and out! I'm going to have to take them back!"

My boyfriend looked alarmed. "How can you take them back? You're already wearing them." Well, " I answered, "I just won't walk. Let's go somewhere where I don't have to walk."

After slowly and carefully walking through the parking structure, to the restaurant, across the street to the bookstore, and back upstairs to the movie theater, I checked the bottom of my shoes. Oh no. They were so scraped, it looked like I had climbed a cliff in heels. "There's no way you're going to get away with that," he said. "We'll see about that!" I answered indignantly.

2 hours later we were back in the department store. I stopped by the lingerie department and picked up a lilac pajama set. I had put the very worn shoes back into the original shoe box and headed straight for the shoe department. Behind the counter was a very mean looking woman. There was a long line of customers, and she looked rather annoyed that she was working on a Saturday night. "Come on," I said. "Let's go to housewares."

In the housewares department there was a very thin, delicate man standing behind the counter who looked bored to death. I turned around to tell my boyfriend that I had found our cashier, but he had disappeared. I didn't care-I was returning these shoes!

"Hi," I said to the cashier, with a huge innocent smile. He stifled a yawn. "Yeah?" "Um, hi. I need to return these shoes because-" He took the box and threw on the counter behind them. I looked at the box. It looked rather lonely and forgotten, and suddenly I felt guilty. "Okay, um," I continued, "I'm returning the shoes, and getting this." I placed the pajama set on the counter. "Yeah, okay." He answered.

The lovely, bored man never even opened the shoe box. I could have had a large variety of different colored rocks in the box and he would have never known. I actually went to the extreme of cleaning the bottom of the shoes and even considered painting the bottoms with brown nail polish, until my boyfriend stopped me.

Some men are kind of dumb. Especially men who work in housewares and have female customers return shoes in their department. And, what made the experience even better, is that he only charged me for the camisole of the pajama set.

Shopping, and returning, is always fun.

Posted by Jaimie :: 3:13 PM :: 2 Peeked Into My Diary:

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Saturday, October 22, 2005

My Man Is SOOOOO Common

My boyfriend and I decided to try out our new shiny plastic credit card that came in the mail. We entered the department store-men's clothes were to the right, women's clothes were to the left. We parted ways without saying much. I began looking at the sweaters, when he came running back to me. "So, uh, what's the budget?" He asked with a hopeful sparkle in his eye. "I don't know," I said. "It's not like we're gonna spend $200 in here." Yeah, right.

45 minutes later he found me amongst the shoes. "How's it going?" he asked. "Good," I answered. "I got this, and this, and this, and...what the hell is that in your hand?" While I was showing him all of my fantastic finds I happened to look up and see what he had picked out. "Oh, these are the things I found," he answered quickly. "What do you think?" He first held up a white sweater with a boring variety of blue lines through the middle. Yawn. Next, he held up a button down black shirt with orange, yellow, and green vertical stripes racing down it. "It looks like a peacock threw up on that shirt!" I exclaimed. He quietly set the shirts down. "Well, what about this?" he asked hopefully. He held up a black vinyl track suit. "My dad wears those." I said. "Let me help you."

I've never shopped for a man before. I mean, I've bought them presents, but I've never shopped for them. This was going to be fun. We walked to the men's department and I found a chocolate brown short-sleeved shirt with button details and a perfect cut. I threw down the jeans he had originally picked up and opted for a distressed jean with a slight green tint to it. I then picked out a soft olive green shirt to wear under the chocolate button down shirt. "I don't know about this," he said doubtfully. "Just try it. I guarantee it will look good."

3 minutes later he emerged looking like a different man. He looked hip and in style, but relaxed and not like he was trying too hard. We also put back my dad's tracksuit and found a black sweatsuit with white piping that had a retro 80's b-boy style to it, but with a mature re-vamp. My boyfriend is 36 but dresses like he's 56. He dresses very safe. It was time for him to dress dangerously.

After leaving the store we were both excited. "I told you I could do it!" I said excitedly. We both left the store happy. After a few quiet moments he said carefully, "Jaimie, I'm going to allow you to dress me for a year. A year, that's all you get. And I want to dress like Common. I like his style." I quickly answered, "Yes! Yes! I love Common's style! You could totally rock that look! When do we start?" My man has found his style. It was always there-it was just hidden behind thick beige turtle neck sweaters and pleated slacks.

Oh, and the theory that we wouldn't spend anywhere near $200? We spent $216, and both went home happy.

Posted by Jaimie :: 8:38 AM :: 3 Peeked Into My Diary:

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Friday, October 21, 2005

How Stella's Getting Her Groove

My daughter Stella has had three boyfriends already, and she is only 3 1/2. Her first boyfriend was named Oliver and he was pretty hot. I found out by a very disgruntled mom at Stella's preschool that Stella stole Oliver away from her daughter. I'm thinking, yeah, and? My daughter's got flirt skills like you wouldn't believe, so is anyone surprised? Anyway, Oliver's mom decided that he would be happier at some snooty preschool in Manhattan Beach, so Oliver left.
Stella was quite upset that Oliver left and told me that she's resorted to kissing Kassidy (who is a girl). "Me and Kassidy can get married, right Mom?" she asked me hopefully. I didn't answer and looked out the window.

Stella has now found a new boyfriend, or rather, two new boyfriends. They are twins. Stella interchanges them at her leisure, which is quite funny. She can't tell them apart, so one is just as good as the other. I am not quite sure if either twin is aware that they are Stella's boyfriend. They are definitely more interested in Spider Man then my adorable daughter. Oliver knew who his girl was-I had to practically yank him off of Stella when I would pick her up from school. Love is so difficult...

Posted by Jaimie :: 5:31 PM :: 1 Peeked Into My Diary:

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Children are Dogs

Children Are Dogs

I'm a kindergarten teacher, so work is always entertaining. It's Friday, and it's "Share Day". Before we began sharing I instructed the students to find a book and read quietly while I tended to other students. There are always a few knuckleheads (usually boys) who hear the word "read" and somehow translate the word into the sentence "Let's not listen to our teacher and do the exact opposite of what she said." There were three students today who were definitely lost in translation and decided to go into the corner of the room and get on their hands and knees. They began crawling around like dogs and barking. They traveled around in a circle in a small area of the classroom. "Stop acting like dogs! Get off the floor!" I told them. The three puppies instantly got up and rather guiltily found their way out of the corner. "No share time for you! Bad puppies! Now sit down in your chairs!"

LA Streets Are A Killer

I'm coming home and I am about to turn onto La Cienega Boulevard. There is a left turn arrow and I am waiting to make my turn. I am behind three other cars and chatting on my cell to my boyfriend. Out of nowhere, this idiot races from the far right lane to my left turn lane right in front of me and cuts me off to make the turn. I loudly rest my hand on the horn and look at him like he's crazy. He looks at me like he's about to kill me, so I look away. I decide that October 21, 2005 is not going to be the date of my death on my headstone, so I leave it alone.

Yeah, Right

I decided to go to LAFitness last night because it had been a week since I had last looked at the place. My boyfriend and my one-time personal trainer that LA Fitness forced me to use convinced me to use the free weights instead of the machines to focus on the small muscles (Or something like that. I was only half listening). Wonderful idea they had, except everyone knows that all the testosterone-driven men use the free weights, and the women are few and far between. Every time I walk upstairs to use the free weights I feel like the nervous stripper doing a premier performance at a drunken bachelor party.

For the most part, the guys leave me alone. They sneak peeks, but they're not overt about it.
Last night there was one dude that would not leave me alone. First, he attempted to smile at me in the mirror (I kept looking away and tried to focus on myself, which would hopefully make him think that I was a conceited bitch). That didn't work. He then started loading up a large amount of weight onto a bar and started grunting a lot so I would think he was oh, so strong. He could barely lift the damn thing. Finally, after this wasn't enough convincing that he was the man for me, he walked over to me and said "Hi. My name is David. Have I seen you here before?" My God, could you think of a lamer line? It was so 1992 of him, that I couldn't help but laugh. His eyes got a little big, but I covered up the laugh with a quick and nasty, "No." "Well, I've been going here for five years. Well, I switch off between here and the LAFitness on La Cienega." Really? Don't care. Leave me alone. "That's nice," I say. I turn back to the mirror.
5 minutes later I'm done with the free weights. I start to walk away and here he comes, galloping towards me. "Hey," he says. "Let's go out to lunch." "I'm married," I said (which is not true, but I owe this man no honesty because he's just some guy at the gym). "What?" he asks, with a smile so big I could count his teeth. "I'm married!" I see that I have to stress the two words, as well as yell a little bit. Several men turn around. I smile at them and walk away quickly.
I think I need to go back to using the machines.

Posted by Jaimie :: 3:40 PM :: 2 Peeked Into My Diary:

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