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Mid-Atlantic Ennui. Possibly Pie.



She was still wearing her work clothes — that was the first thing he
noticed when she opened the front door. The rumpled, red turtleneck, she
must have had that for three, four, five years, the way the elastic in
the neckline sagged; he remembered her complaining about needing new
clothes to wear to Jonah’s Christmas recital or to a Christmas party at
her sister’s or something — it had to have been Christmas, that was
when she always lost her common sense with money, when she managed to
drag him into spending it like there was a bottomless pit of it hidden
off somewhere. It almost tickled him now, to see it nearly threadbare and part
of a pisspoor collection of office-friendly–

“Oh,” she said, rapping her knuckles on the door frame. “Oh, oh, shit. I forgot you were coming over tonight. Just finished picking up dinner. Fried chicken – I got two buckets if you’re hungry.”

He blinked. He had only now considered that this upcoming Christmas was only a few months away, and how would she manage to scrape together presents for the kids when–

“Are you going to come in?” she asked, with a slight tinge of annoyance that managed to bring him back to his senses.

“We need to talk about the house utilities,” he said, still hovering on
the stoop. “I called PECO today about the gas.”

“Oh, shit, I know–”

“And they said it was still, still under my–”

“I know, I know,” she said, turning her back to him and heading inside, waving her hand in a way that made him feel like he would faint from the rage that suddenly flushed his face. “I’ve just been busy.”

And then there was red.

“You know how much I’ve asked you to just switch the utilities to your name,” he said, following her without even bothering to shut the door behind him. “This one thing.”

“I know,” she said.

“This one god damned thin–”

“I know,” she repeated, putting her hand on the staircase railing.

“I am dying and you know it and you still can’t, won’t, whatever the fuck do this one fucking thing–”

“I know,” she said, half stammering, half shouting–

“And when the kids are asking why it’s fucking cold in the house, you can’t start saying it’s because I’m a cheapskate, and it will be your own fucking fault for once.”

“Don’t you start,” she screamed to the carpet. “When you were the one that hid this from all of us in the first place.”

And in a second, he felt his hand on her shoulder, felt her spin around with her throat throbbing and panting like bellows, her eyes glassy; he saw small, dark shadows at the top of the stairs looking down at him, murmuring; he heard the blood drumming in his ears. And he wondered that if he was actually dying, maybe now, when he thought he at least had a few more weeks. Which was still a lot of time, he thought, to tie up odds and ends and–

And then he realized she was looking up at him, terrified – of what? And his hand was still on her, and he wondered if he was forcing the two of them back into this pattern as a last semblance of normality. A last suggestion that everything was as it always was. Would be.

And the drumming stopped and the walls were just the same old eggshell white they had painted them and the leering shapes at the top of the stairs broke out into small whispers before padding back into their rooms.

And he looked back down at her, at her slumped shoulders, her clenched fists, the slow and steady crescendo of her sobs. She always had so much more finesse to her anger. She never screamed, said awful things, not without him around.

“I don’t know what time you’re on,” she said, closing her eyes and leaning against the wall. “Any of us, for that matter. And it’s just a name.”

Just a name. Somewhere, in the heady mixture cooling anger and mounting shame, he felt a mite insulted.

“I’m sorry,” she choked out. “It’s my fault.”

But there was no desire to fling anything back in her face.

Sorry for the absence. I had a long, weird, and rather crappy past several months, to keep it short and simple. I’m finally hitting that point where I’m starting to feel okay again, and where I need to do something other than share caustic Facebook statuses.

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Filthy Phucking Language

Partially because I really wanted to learn how to blur mouths out in Final Cut, mostly because nothing says romance like having some asswipe scream at you.

Them's some anger issues you got, brah.

Them’s some anger issues you got, brah.

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The Parting Glass

Lancaster, PA last weekend.

Lancaster, PA last weekend.

And all the harm that e’er I’ve done,
Alas! it was to none but me.
And all I’ve done for want of wit
To mem’ry now I can’t recall
So fill to me the parting glass
Good night and joy be with you all.

I’m generally not one to get weepy over pub songs, but this one says it all so freaking well. Being bitter is easy — it’s genuinely wishing peace upon other people that’s challenging.

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I think the stress levels of handling such a chaotic part of your life start to get to you.

Evil cackle.

Picture 20

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Thoughts on a motorcycle.


He sold this motorcycle to have money for me.  Basically, I learned that I am too selfish to have kids.

He sold this motorcycle to help cover the cost of my coming into this world. Basically, I learned that I am too selfish to have kids.

I only went out on the motorcycle with him a couple of times in my life, and those rides consisted of a few short laps around the neighborhood. (I think, for my mother’s sanity, that’s all my Dad would ever allow.) But however quick, however rare those little excursions were, I will never forget the joy of moving so quickly that you didn’t have time to think about the inherent danger of the world around you. I will never forget the feeling of holding on to him for my small life, worried that one of us would be torn from the other. I will never forget that we could have, at any moment, hurtled off the bike and into the deafening, blurry world around it.

I don’t think I’ll ever be able to get on a motorcycle again.


(He love Sam Cooke and badgering people with his singing. So do I, hey.)



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Unchained Melody.

Oh, my love, my darling, etc.

Life, she moves quickly.


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This may or may not be partially based on real life experience.



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The Book Cliffs.

Picture 14


It’s hard not to add a touch of hyperbole when discussing the Book Cliffs. They are, after all, a testament to the fact that we were once all underwater, that our existence was and is a slow, dry burn spanning several billions of years. That before there were the dizzying sinews of yellow, brown, and red, there was nothing but a sea so vast it dwarfed mountains, that it swallowed up the state of Utah and most of the continental United States along with it.

You see the Book Cliffs and see a world that rose out from the baptismal font and literally weathered its long existence in spite of everything the universe had to throw at it — be it dinosaurs or Donny Osmond.

It’s hyperbole, sure, but it’s the Book Cliffs. You’d have to be there to get it.


Delaware isn’t as awful or as boring as most people make it out to be, but there is something to be said when one of your highest points of elevation is kindly named “Iron Hill”. You spend maybe one or two field trips at the small museum by its foot, admiring the arrowhead collection and the fact that you’re not in class for a few hours. You drive by it without a backward glance on the way to swim practice or on a Sunday night adventure to the libertine pleasure dome that is the State Line Liquor Store in Elkton, Maryland.

Perhaps most sadly, Iron Hill sits right by the site of Delaware’s only battle during the Revolutionary War — the likewise largely forgotten but more interestingly named landmark, “Cooch’s Bridge”. 30 men died in the fight for independence, and now we call it “Vagina Bridge” when we drive by it. It’s a real tangled yarn of tragedy when you think about it.

But that’s how we roll when we’re 331 feet from the ground and a two-hour drive from top to bottom.

Iron Hill is no Mt. Marvine, certainly — Mt. Marvine, which is nowhere near the most impressive thing I’ve seen on this trip, but it sits so far out into the distance from the train tracks that you’re able to see it in its monstrous entirety, along with the large lighting storm rolling towards it from across the endless stretch of brush and sand.

And it’s not the Book Cliffs, that’s for certain. And as I lay out across one of the padded plastic benches in the train’s viewing cart, head spinning from the Rocky Mountains that morning and a large amount of overpriced snack bar wine, I start to wonder how much of Delaware I am.

I want to be like Utah, I tell myself as the train runs along Green River, makes it way through Helper. I want to be like Utah, I say as the train passes between the ghostly Castle Gate rock formations and the abandoned town bearing the same name. Would it be so much, to be so remote, so large, so quiet, and yet to still say so much?

And as the sun sets over Price River Canyon, the cliffs become a dense, deep purple that somehow manages to glow in the coming night.

I want to be that, I say to myself as I flip through my phone in my restlessness, the sky so dark that I couldn’t tell you anything about what Provo may or may not look like.

But I am the short person who, upon realizing how tiny she is, shakes off the big personality and sits down, occasionally remembered with a little laugh. I am Delaware.

Yeah, okay, I know everyone was over Sufjan Stevens and his failed “I’m gonna write an album for everyone one of the 50 States” deal, but the more I read about Utah’s history, the more I weep for what could have been an amazing record.


My twee side is so very twee.

So this is a lighthearted post about how the weather was nice this evening and how I walked home whilst listening to the Amélie soundtrack. Mostly because I’m feeling so 2003 right now.

Anyway, everyone loves this song. And I a boring sap… so I covered it.

In other news, this tumblr page.

oh my god.


Happy Hump Day!

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A Fine, Fine Line.

(I mostly picked this song because there isn’t a twenty-something who hasn’t felt this way before, but also because my class instructor has been trying to hammer it into me to sing forward … and this song basically forces you to do that. It’s god damned hard, yo.)


So fate was handed down to me the first day of 7th grade choir, when it became very clear that I was not a soprano in a room full of 12-year-old girls desperate to prove themselves one. In the middle of the shrieking maelstrom, I remember Mr. Gray firmly plunking out a middle Bb, asking me if I could sing it comfortably.

I gave up quickly enough and took my seat on the left side of the room with the other dejected rejects.

It’s not that we all looked at being an alto like it was something truly terrible — like your mom still packed you notes in your lunch or like you had lice. It felt more like the way most girls cling onto the flute and clarinet in elementary school. It was girly. Expected.

(I’m still angry my mom didn’t let me take drums.)

That was how I, untalented as I was, managed to snag a spot in Delaware All-State Choir for two years in a row. Most girls audition edas soprano, regardless of whether or not that was their appropriate voice part, leaving a large, gaping who desperate to be filled by people who can spit out a straight pattern of C-D-E for sixteen bars.

Me, alto. Alto II, even, because I enjoyed talking like a guy and figured the same sort of fun would be had there, at least.


I always admire people who are great at pursuing hobbies outside of their day job. The middle-aged guy standing in Rittenhouse Square with a palette in one hand and a brush in the other is my hero — how vulnerable and brave do you have to be to do that something like that? People see an easel and will automatically look at you. They’ll crane their necks to see if you have something arbitrarily valuable to show for the time you’ve spent, and when it isn’t a Picasso, they promptly forget about you or roll their eyes.

Or make you a joke in their ~ oh so introspective blog post~

So here I am, taking theater classes because it’s something that I enjoy and because it’s something I never had the grit or talent to do professionally. But, hey, it’s fun. And I can’t let the guy in the park take all the thunder.

Alto II.

Well, Angelina, is there something you’d really like to accomplish with this class?

Maybe singing outside of my chest voice? Maybe getting to be sexy?

Can you sing in your head voice?

Only when I’m joking.

Are you comfortable in your mix voice?


Well, my challenge for you this semester is to starting comfortable singing in your head and mix voice.


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