Wednesday, October 12, 2011

#18 Smashed foam Karuba cup

Originally uploaded by PackRatty McRatterson

One night, while sitting in the window of the Blue Moon, I saw something white floating way way above the streetlights. I watched it for at least 10 minutes as it dipped and swirled, and moved slowly closer to me. At times, it would almost fall, then it would get sucked up again. It seemed to be taunting me. I was intrigued.

I got distracted for a few minutes, but when I looked for it again, it was still out there. It was behaving in the same way, but much closer than it had been. I became more and more convinced it was waiting for me.

When I mentioned it to my friends, everyone joked that it was a message from god. Maybe. I had to see it. I went outside with my coffee. Almost immediately, it fell at my feet, white side up. I was kind of scared to pick it up. When I did, I began to chuckle. I attempted to take a sip of coffee, and found my cup empty. I began to laugh. Hard. Finally, someone came outside and asked me what it said. The message was clear. "God wants us to have more coffee."

Monday, April 4, 2011

#17 Flowery Express Skirt

Originally uploaded by PackRatty McRatterson

In 1998, I stopped wearing pants. It made absolutely no sense. Up until then, my basic uniform was some sort of t-shirt and jeans. I didn't even want to wear a skirt for choir. I hated flowery things until I found this skirt for a couple bucks at Ragstock, and it changed my life.

I can't go back to bifurcation. I do dabble on rare occasions, but I get uneasy when my legs can't touch each other. It's hard to explain. I am always amused when people assume I am dressed up, or they ask me if I wear skirts for religious reasons. Nope. I am just not a pants person.

I loved this skirt and wore it to death. It's covered in cigarette burns, the hem has torn out of it and been repaired several times. In the early aughts, I was sitting on the sidewalk and didn't realize I had been sitting in a big gob of gum until it was much too late. I tried valiantly to save it, to no avail. I was devastated, because it was a huge symbol of the shift between what was and what is. I have never seen another one like it.

Friday, April 1, 2011

#16 Jennie's Misc Desk Stuff Box

Originally uploaded by PackRatty McRatterson

Two weeks ago, my husband and I finally settled into our new place. All the things we need were finally unpacked, and it was time to banish empty boxes. In the process, I told him to break this box down, and then I started crying.

This was the last box of my things I packed when I moved out of my mom's house at eighteen. It is the perfect size for the two handfuls of tiny things I am always left with at the end of packing.

Today is my 28th birthday. Looking at the photo of that box, I'm getting all misty again. I am thinking of me at that age, how it felt to close that last, little box. I'm thinking of all the pain I didn't know was coming, at all the joy I didn't know I'd be rewarded with, in time. Ten years I traveled with this thing. Wow.

Next time we move, I will end up with a small pile of things with no home, small things I don't want to put in a huge box, and I know I will go looking for this one. I just know it. But it will be OK.

Monday, March 21, 2011

#15 Artificial Roses

Originally uploaded by PackRatty McRatterson

So, I was prom queen(that's another story). My only duty as such was to crown the next prom queen. Three days before prom, I still did not have a date. I announced before lunch that if I didn't have one by the end of the day, I wasn't going. My friend Dan stepped in. He said his girlfriend was going with a freshman, so he would be my date.

Later that day, she ended up crying and screaming at me in class, because I guess the only reason she was going with a freshman was because Dan had outright refused to go to prom with her, because it was stupid. Oops. I assured her it was purely platonic. She continued to freak out, but Dan said he would stick to his word re: being my escort.

He was at an archery competition all day. By the time he was done, the flower shop was closed, so he bought me a ridiculously overpriced red rose from the gas station. While bumming around Shopko after dinner, he bought me these cause they matched my dress perfectly and he felt bad I was going to show up with only one flower.

He was a really good date. Best platonic date I ever had.

Friday, February 11, 2011

To Explain My Absence

I may be away for a while. I was looking forward to really diving back in after my trip, but I came home to a sick kitty who has since died, and I am kind of a wreck, and will be for a while, I assume.
We start moving on Tuesday, so that's another factor. I'll be here, I just don't know when.

Monday, February 7, 2011

#14 Djarum Internationals Tin

Originally uploaded by PackRatty McRatterson

This was given to me in 1999 by a co-worker, along with the 6 remaining cigarettes. Since I was underage, it was a pretty big deal. We were both silly, weird, artsy types, we both loved ugly vintage things. Losing touch with her is one of the only reasons I ever regretted quitting that job.

I saw her a couple years ago at Salvation Army. I recognized her immediately, and I practically ran over to say hello. Then, as I approached, I overheard part of her cell phone conversation. She was swearing a lot, complaining about the cops, and how she already had to go to court for a number of charges from what sounded like several separate incidents. As I got closer, she looked more and more tired, and more and more ragged, and it seemed like she just hadn't smiled or laughed in a long while. She smelled like a bar. I snuck away before she had even noticed my approach.

I still don't know if it would have been cruel or kind to say hello. I didn't know if it would have made her happy or sad to see me, to acknowledge the passage of 10 years, and the changes they brought.

Friday, February 4, 2011

#13 Plastic Truck

Originally uploaded by PackRatty McRatterson

I have often said that it is so much easier to make friends when you're a kid because you can just walk up to the sand box, sit down, and usually end up making a friend. You show up with a cool new truck or something, and everyone wants to talk to you.

When I moved to Oshkosh, I only had a few friends, and it was very difficult for me to reach out. I met this really cool guy at work, who seemed like a total nerd, and he seemed smart and kind, and I wanted to be his friend. But, I am shy. So I never really talked to him. Scheduling a "play date" with another grownup is awkward.

One day, we were the only people outside on break, and he handed me some chalk and asked if I would trace a chalk line around him, dead-body style. I did a really poor job. But still, we seemed like we'd mesh as friends. Somehow, he found my LJ, and read my entry about friends and sandboxes.

The first time we hung out, he showed up with two plastic trucks, and took me to the playground to play in the sand.