Returning is hard. Leaving wasn’t easy, but it was gradual. A six month visit turned into a 6 year stay, but I was never there permanently and it took some time to adjust. I’m not sure I ever really did. But there was always that sense of adjusting, of moving, of changing and adapting to my surroundings.
Coming back happened all of a sudden, and all of the things I remembered that made me want to leave were bigger and even more annoying than before. I didn’t want to be back. I didn’t want to deal with 8-lane highways, gridlock, and hours on public transportation. I didn’t want to deal with jumbo sized everything and flat Midwestern accents and well-meaning racialicious white people who felt entitled to inform me how unracist they are.
More than anything, I didn’t want to deal with the questions, or the assumptions behind them.
“You must have money, right? Anyone who travels like you do must have money.”
“You musta got your heart broke by some Englishman. That why you came back?”
“Did you bring me something nice?”
“Do you think you’re better than everybody now?”
It’ s not that people here in the US are any more ignorant than people in the UK, or anywhere else in the world. It’s just that returning has reminded me how ignorant we all are, and how few people actually are aware of that ignorance.
I can’t wait to be consciously ignorant again. Here’s to February, and blowing this big ol’ red white and blue popsicle stand again.
So the other day I decided that I wanted to buy a McDonald’s apple pie. Not one of those crappy baked ones that have taken over the dessert portion of the menu in stateside McDonald’s…no, Mother England still fries her pies in oil, resulting in the perfect combination of crackly crisp crust and molten lava apple filling. Those pies are one of the best things about life as an expat in Britain. They make up for every boiled vegetable, dry pastry, and unsalted piece of meat I’ve been tricked into eating in this country…almost.
Where was I? Oh, yeah. I wanted an apple pie. So I went into a McDonald’s with a handful of change.. It was a strange time of day, just before the lunch rush, so the place was pretty empty. I walk in. See the display tube of pies, nearly empty. And before I order one, I ask the first employee I see “How long ago were those pies fried?”
You would have thought I’d asked, “How many times did you spit in my hamburger?”
I promise it’s less disgusting after the jump…
Continue reading →
I am so unimpressed with myself right now. I have ten tons of work to do…a meeting to discuss the first bit of my dissertation, an essay to do some research for, a sadly neglected etsy shop to update, and a recapitulative seminar to revise for tomorrow morning.
But what am I doing? I’m drifting across the internet, visiting Twitter and Facebook and YouTube and WordPress. Ah, WordPress. The place I come to talk about things that don’t matter much to people who don’t know me at all. What would I do without internet therapy?
This was originally going to be one of my typical long, ranty posts full of unnecessary self-disclosure, complaints and platitudinizing but you know what?
I wrote it all out.
I read it.
I read it again.
And I decided that I did not need to be putting all of that temporary misery out there for permanent on the internet. I’ve done my share of that. It’s out of my system. It’s done, It’s gone.
Like I said, what would I do without internet therapy?
Today’s song title/blog title has nothing to do with the topic, but I did want to shout out this kick–ass cover of Adele’s Rolling In the Deep by Swedish band Dirty Loops. Adele, for me, is a big meh in the musical landscape and Rolling the Deep is the meh-iest of all her tunes. Don’t get me wrong–I can see why people love her and that song. I just don’t feel the same way.
This cover by Dirty Loops, does what all the best covers do and makes this song a keeper for me.
With that said, I’ll ask a few questions to end today’s post.
What happens when you realize that you’re doing too much with too little?
What happens when you realize, on the path to becoming a better person, that you also need better people?
Tricky questions, I suppose. Hit the comments if you have any ideas.
Yeah. So this whole make a post saying I’m having a bad day and disappearing for months on end thing? Not a good look. Have to quit doing that.
Been laying low and attempting, unsuccessfully, to relax and interact with the world in a less pressurized way. It hasn’t really worked–the pressure is on more than ever–but it has made me realize a few important things in the first few weeks of the new year. I love to study and will probably wind up teaching sooner or later. I need a better job. I need to move, both in the short and long term. And I really need to make more youtube videos–positive ones. Speaking of youtube though, I appreciate all the kind messages sent by you guys after my last one…thank you for your kindness and concern. I’m fine. Hanging in there. Trying to, anyway.
There are lots of things percolating in my head as usual, about things like human kindness, human arrogance, and the perils of growing old alone intentionally. However, today I just want to do something light and get out of my blogging slump.
See what it is after the jump…