INDIEchouette


LES CHEVEUX, EL JAY, ET L’ANNEE DERNIERE

There’s this girl in a few of my classes.  She is brilliant, and she has this shiny, blonde, sleek, hope-filled hair.  It wants to be looked at.  I do not think that she realizes it, but she never has a bad hair day.  In fact, I doubt anyone ever realizes it, because quite frankly, I do not think that anyone really notices the way she looks.  That is sad in itself.  It’s a real shame.  I doubt she puts any product in it, either.  I think that she just lets it dry naturally, and voilà, there you have it!  Beautiful hair.  And I bet she uses a real simple shampoo.  She might not even need conditioner.  But nobody notices.  Don’t get me wrong–it’s okay if you use conditioner.  It’s okay if you need product.  I sure as hell do, and my hair is never, ever parfait.  But this girl’s hair is a real wonder.  The first time I saw her wear it down, I thought, “Wow, I should tell her that her hair looks amazing today.”  But I did not.  She probably would have thought I was being sarcastic or creepy, anyway.   I should have told her.  I would say that is her best feature.

Well, I was talking with people in a group.  The way I write about my life, you’d think that’s a rare occurrence.  In fact, it is not.  It happens nearly every day.  This particular conversation, I could not contribute much to, so I listened.  And I found out a little bit about this girl’s past.  She dated someone.  I did not know that she dated anyone and I did not gather that from classes, but the boy she dated immediately earned my respect, somehow.

You may think that I pity this girl.  I do not.  There is nothing to pity in her.  She is intelligent, beautiful in a simple manner, and modest.  I just find her intriguing because she is so guarded.  I would like to get the opportunity to get to know her, because I just know there’s something there.  Something different.  You know that’s not going to happen, though.  First of all, I am too shy to do anything like approach her and strike up a conversation.  I would not know what to talk about.  Second of all, I do not think she cares for me.  I attempt to smile at her sometimes, and she stares back.  I may just look away too soon.  But I believe that she thinks that I am an entirely superficial, conceited being, maybe for something as simple as the looks I inherited from my parents.  She may think that I attempt to cast myself as an intriguing, guarded, mysterious being, but that there may be nothing intriguing, or mysterious inside–nothing worth guarding.  That, though, ties back to my shyness.  She is not an intimidating girl, except by way of her brains.

Upon further listening, it was revealed that this girl had a crush on this one boy in our grade.  When I say “had a crush on,” I mean that is what I would assume.  The people talking, though, said that she was “in love with” this boy.  I wonder if he knew, but all I could tell from the conversation was that it was unreciprocated.  Unrequited.  This boy is also in several of my classes.  I can certainly see the attraction, but I find it unrealistic to even consider pursuing friendship, even for the most conventionally beautiful girls in our class.  He is intelligent himself, rather elusive, and…I don’t want to say pretentious.  He is not pretentious.  But he may rub some people the wrong way and come off as pretentious.  It is not actually pretentiousness, though.  Whatever it is, it intimidates me.

Somehow, gaining the news that that girl was in love with that particular boy made me incredibly sad.  Probably because of how unrealistic it was, or because it was the story of my life.  I do not tend to do it all too often anymore, but I used to fall in love with idealistic personalities.  I used to fall in love with people from a distance.  These were always people that I could never, in a million years, actually get to know.  And when they spoke to me, I would relish those conversations, though I would not have much to throw back.  Nothing to demonstrate my wit or whatever.  Nothing that they would remember.  All I could do is smile and be dumb.  And it was so stupid.

But I secretly knew how well we would get along, if only I was not so guarded.  How we would have fucking picnics.  That changed to home-made vegan picnics, eventually.  How I would make him a mix CD and he would make one back, and it would make me blush, perhaps.  Write letters to one another by hand, instead of communicating with technology.  Be close, always.  Be spontaneous.  Cook things together, and pick flowers and be outside all the time in the spring and summer and fall, in the sunshine.  Listen to music together in my car, me clinging to the hot steering wheel, and sing along with it at the top of our lungs, because it is our mutually favourite song.  And my only alone time would be when I was running, and that was all that I demanded.  Okay, that, and maybe trips to Bethlehem.

But then I moved, and all of that changed.  I no longer romanticized…romance…in my head.  I didn’t really care about the fucking picnics or mix CDs or any of that idealistic shit I cooked up in my head.  Look at me.  I am alone all the time and I communicate solely with technology.  And I am sad.  I would give all that fun shit up to live in Richmond again with monotony.  Fuck you if you live near your boyfriend/girlfriend and take it for granted.  But in my deep-down sadness, I am really happy.

Erika once wrote something about how our happiness is based off of our unhappiness, and I found that I identified with what she wrote.  It really stuck in my head, au moins the basic point.  But I find that when I am unhappy, that means that there is something to be fixed.  I enjoy being busy, and working at improvements.  So being unhappy is not so bad.  It just means that my life needs fluffing up.  If I am content, then I am not really content because I am not busy.  My project is done.  You know?  It’s strange, I know.

I am scared for college next year because one thing will be fixed.  I will be in Richmond again.  I know that is not fixing everything.  I know that I want to travel the globe, and that living in Richmond may be hindering my chances at that.  But I want to go to VCU.  By the way, I was accepted at VCU.  I will be closer to Derek again, and I certainly won’t take that for granted.  And I won’t take the city for granted, either, or my father, or my friends back in high school.  But all that fixing, what happens when it is fixed?  I have a theory that I am destructive, and that if nothing is broken, I will knock over that vase just to give myself something to do.  I am afraid of just what precious sculpture I will knock over.   Maybe I could join a gym, work out.  Maybe that would prevent me from breaking anything.

Maybe I should change my major from French to English.  Because what if I’m wrong?  What if my accent is not good enough, what if it never comes?

Well, after going back to read Erika’s old writings (which are savory and full of meaning and amazing grammar), it makes Saddle Creek so tempting.  And I miss being a sophomore.  Naivety–I was not in love yet.  And I just want to listen to Rilo Kiley and Bright Eyes and Azure Ray and soak there.  Because that is what I thought love must be like.  I love Rilo Kiley, but I feel that my appreciation wanes without anyone to share it with.  It just becomes these songs by this band.  No meaning, though, because there isn’t someone there where I can say, “I am going to pin this song to this life experience.  What do you think?”  We used to do that sort of thing.  And Paige didn’t like Rilo Kiley then, but she did like Bright Eyes, indeed.  And I loved them both because I could get to know the elusive “other Paige” from elementary school and all of her quirks, and I could also get to know the not-so-elusive “new girl” with Chucks.  It was just fun.  And now I lack that.   I never laughed so hard as when I was in their company.  Theirs, or Divya’s.  Theirs, Divya’s, or Derek’s after we watched Happy Feet.  I liked our extensive pop culture jokes.  Now, I just download as much fucking music as I can, learn about the artists, and write.  And think.

Here are some tracks that have aided me in writing this post.

Do You Realize? (Postal Service Remix) | The Flaming Lips

I love this song unconditionally.  “Do you realize that you have the most beautiful face?”  I think that should be said to everyone at some point in his or her life.

Blue Bird | The Rosebuds

It took a while for me to get in the right mood to enjoy this song, but tonight, I was mellow enough to do so.  It is almost from another decade.  Melancholy, like unrequited love.

I Never | Rilo Kiley

I went back to read Erika’s El Jay, and I caught a passage about listening to this song.  I wish she wrote more often, but I suppose that is the beauty of her writing.  She does not write often, but she writes beautifully.


3 Comments so far
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1. There is a girl in one of my classes with blond hair like you have described. It has the perfect highlights, is always shiny, and I bet she never has to straighten it or anything. I resent people when they have perfect hair. I don’t know why, it’s a bad habit. Just like I resent people when their jeans fit perfectly without the tiniest bit of muffin top, or when their outfits look perfect and pulled together. I probably resent them because I have none of those things.

I put my hair in a ponytail every day because I do not want to spend an hour making it look decent. I have never in my life found a pair of jeans that fits perfectly. By the time they fit around my waist, they’re baggy on my thighs. If they fit my thighs, I can’t even button them. And they’re always too long. I’m at this odd height between short-length and regular-length. I bet if I were a size 2 or 4, pants would be the correct length. But I am not.

And my outfits are definitely never pulled together. Probably because I don’t have clothes that fit me correctly, and I probably never will because stores don’t make clothes to fit normal people. And because I really just am too lazy to put anything but jeans and a sweatshirt on every day. Sometimes I don’t even go so far as jeans. Sometimes it’s only sweatpants. There was a time in my life when I would have never dreamed of being seen in public in sweatpants. But now, I really don’t care.

Oh, and I resent people with clear skin, too.

2. I get friend crushes on people a lot. Not so much in college, because the people here are pretentious and bitchy (Say Anything’s “Admit It!” was written for people at my school), but more so in high school. There was this one girl in my homeroom. She was in with the popular crowd, which didn’t really mean anything in my class because we were all friends anyways, but I didn’t talk to her often. But when I did, I always thought that we’d be great friends. She was quiet and shy, but we liked the same music and it seemed as if we would get along great.

I never talked to her. Even if I were to go home and pass her on the sidewalk, and we did that awkward back and forth dance, I probably would only smile and say “hey” quietly.

Because I, Sara Day, am pathetic.

Comment by wellwell

I actually do the resentment thing a lot of times, too, as awful as it is. Maybe not with hair so much (though occasionally) as with the way their clothes fit, as you said. Seeing girls with those perfect waistlines so they don’t have to wear jackets all the time to cover up, or the skinniest arms in the world, or nice jawlines. Clear skin, I also envy it. I get jealous of bodies. It’s weird, but I also can’t help but stare, almost admire for a minute, as though staring will morph me, and then resentment sinks in again. And it’s not that I hate the girl at all. It’s because looking at the girl makes me hate my own body. Then again, I am sure that some of those girls without the muffin tops are staring at our legs and how our jeans hang off of them, wishing their thighs were that small. Or they are looking at our height (weird that I remember, Travis once said that I am about your height) and wishing they were compact enough that they could wear high heels on dates instead of flats. But I would not wear heels on a date, even at my height. I guess I take that ability for granted.

And then–do boys even notice the things we do? I think that some of the strange things I do–like covering up with jackets and pulling up my pants constantly and wearing makeup–are to satisfy other girls far more than they are to impress guys. Or they are to compete with other girls. To tell them that I am taking their tips. To show them that I am tasteful. It’s weird, because you would think that girls would be more united because we are stereotypically more emotional and we have to deal with menstruation once a month and we have to watch ourselves for pregnancy, I guess, if we are inclined to sexual activity. You would think we would get along. And guys have no reason, really, to bond, because they can’t get pregnant or anything. I guess I’m talking on an instinctive level. But girls all have that one painful experience to bond over, and instead of getting along, we critique one another. We critique based on how hard puberty hit, or how well we take care of ourselves, or how covered up we are. Covered up enough that we do not come across as sluts, but not so covered up that we appear to be frumpy piles of clothes.

I guess we’ll both have other chances to make up for the friends we have missed out on. Like next year when you get new freshmen at your college, or when I start as a freshman at my college.

Comment by indiechouette

“I love Rilo Kiley, but I feel that my appreciation wanes without anyone to share it with. It just becomes these songs by this band”

Hi, I stumbled over your blog accidentally in a rilo kiley (my favourite band along with bright eyes,dresden dolls, T&S, cat power etc) related search. I feel what you’re saying here. Mostly I find that music listening and discovering is a solitary experience. This is out of necessity, because none of my friends are interested or passionate about music like I am, and although it’s lonesome sometimes, I feel like maybe it just makes me love the music more intensely, storing up all these songs and thoughts and feelings inside myself. Maybe.

I’m still waiting for that boy who just wants to lie on the grass looking up at the sky whilst listening to my entire Bright Eyes collection, though. ha.

peace, isa

Comment by isa




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