Places - Paris

Writer's Block: Easy Like Sunday Morning

Ah, Sunday, the day of rest. What's your favorite way to spend a Sunday morning?

Well, that's easy: At home, curled up with a cup of coffee with a book or going through the photos taken during that particular week.

New Year's Eve. New Year's! New Year's! New Year's! Everybody's asking me what I'm doing for New Year's. All of the nurses are so nosy. "What are you doing for New Year's? Are you going to any parties? Hosting one? Do you have a date? Are you staying in? Are you going to watch the ball drop?" This gets answered in a number of ways:

1. No. I am not watching the ball drop. I don't have a TV, Times Square is too hectic, and it's just a big shiny ball.
2. No. The last New Year's Eve party I went to, someone spilled beer all over my new white cashmere sweater. That also kind of settles the need for a date, since I'm not going anywhere.
3. No. I'm not hosting a "party", exactly. Too many people in my house is as hectic for me as going to Times Square. However...
4. Yes. I'm definitely staying in and inviting some guests. Claire is back in town. Viticus promised to stop in when I saw him by chance yesterday--sporting a pretty little ring around his left finger--and asked to bring one guest with him. Mr. E said he would try to be by. Cecile is staying in.

And tying us all together is a bottle of genuine verte absinthe one of my relatives manage to sneak through customs. (How they managed to do that, I have no idea, but it never fails that every year since I've been living on my own...) We'll be ringing in the New Year like a regular troupe of 19th Century Paris artists.

Honestly, what surprises me most is Cecile's decision to stay in with us, but I guess it really shouldn't. She's thriving a lot more now and really loves the job she has at this little bookstore a couple blocks from Central Park. I think she's beginning to recover from having her heart broken by that idiot she was seeing, even though she still talks about him like she's expecting him to just show up on our doorstep one day. I don't care that he's related to Mr. E. Cecile doesn't need some easily-jealous, smooth-talking, narcissistic, possessive, spineless-for-suddenly-dropping-contact-for-no-reason idiot in her life--especially when he's much older than her.

But what do I know? It was pointed out to me last night by Cecile that I appear to be in a most uncommon sort of relationship, but I beg to differ. Mr. E and have something that's love-based, but it's more like a love-based friendship than a real relationship. At least, this is what we've come to decide, considering our respective circumstances.

Not that it makes Cecile any less quietly jealous...
Places - Paris

Good Christmas Morning, Friends & Neighbors

I'm here at my mom's place (well, technically speaking, my mom and dad's), taking a momentary break to leech some free wireless off a neighbor long enough to post and say "Merry Christmas". Everybody in the family seems to be packed in here; I'm pretty sure there are even a few relatives I don't even recognize in this house. Really, I should still be in the kitchen helping to cook, but since I've been in there since 7AM I think I've earned myself a break, don't you?

Things are good. Mr. E is here. He's quiet and looks very much out of his element. He says he's still not used to being around so many people. Maybe we'll go out to a Starbucks later.

Mr. E brought me the prettiest little music box. Hand-carved, hand-painted red with gold accents; there are even little pearls on here. It looks like it cost a fortune, and considering it's imported from Spain... But he just smiled and said he knew people.

I get the feeling this is the best Christmas either one of us has had in a long time. Minus all the time I've had to spend in the kitchen.

Speaking of, I hear my name being called. Time to get back to work!
Places - Paris

(no subject)

Happy birthday to me,
Happy birthday to me,
Happy birthday, dear Allys,
You've survived twenty-one.

As of thirty minutes ago, I am officially 22 years old. I'm not sure how I feel about it yet, but I can at least happily say that my absence is not from getting locked in a mental hospital somewhere. I've just been super-busy. Holidays in New York City; gotta love it.

My dear Mr. E is with me. He brought a small chocolate mint cake. We'll see if that cake lives to see the morning or not.
collage - coffee stain

(no subject)

It has been an even stranger couple of weeks.

Still apparently painting in my sleep. Cecile says she even hears me singing now; says it’s neither English or French. I don’t know any other languages.

(I think something happened between her and her supposed boyfriend. She doesn’t go out as much, except to the job I helped her get as a waitress at this coffee shop near the hospital, and she seems really bummed out lately.)

The day after I wrote my last blog I saw someone die. Walking on my way home, this sedan came out of nowhere and just hit this homeless street preacher while he was in the middle of giving his daily sermon to a crowd of nobodies. Never saw it coming. Street Preacher didn’t fly or roll over the car like in the movies; he was caught under the wheels. It was a violent mess that came out of the other side. The couple who got out of the car were yuppies.

I didn’t call the cops. I ran home, locked myself in my room and realized that somehow…somehow, I had the Street Preacher’s bible. It’s covered with all sorts of symbols and the inside is highlighted and scribbled on with all sorts of bright colors. I threw it across the room, crawled into bed, and sobbed until I fell asleep.

When I woke up, it was Tuesday. Cecile was banging at my door, panicking. She said I looked sick but I didn’t go to a doctor. I just went to work. I haven’t told my shrink and I’ve had two sessions since it happened. I shoved the bible into the bottom drawer of my dresser, under clothes I don’t really wear except when it’s laundry day. I’ve just been trying to forget about it, but it seems like news about it has been everywhere. Apparently, one of the yuppies from the car is the son of some well-to-do Manhattan socialite or something. Fucking rich kids…

I wish my Mr. E was here. He hasn’t come by in a while. I’m worried.

I’m worried about myself, too. Pretending that everything is fine when I still feel the way I do is not good. I think it’s overdue that I try to see someone important. If there is anyone who can help me, it’ll be him.
collage - brown

School? What's that?

It has been a strange couple of weeks. If I didn’t have a stack of textbooks and several class syllabuses (syllabuses? syllabi?) on one side and several post-its stuck to the back of my computer detailing photo jobs that I have lined up I seriously doubt that I would’ve even realized that school was back in session. And honestly, it’s not that a lot has been going on in the last two weeks; things have just been kind of…strange. I can’t explain it, really.

I haven’t been sleeping very well. That might have something to do with it. And when I DO sleep I never wake up in bed. Somehow, I always find myself on my couch (usually with paint on myself) and a new, finished painting on the easel. And they’re all really…strange. Small portraits--all of them men. Viticus’s was the first one, and the only person I recognize, but somehow I’d painted him as a samurai? (If you knew him, you’d know how strange that is.) The rest, I don’t recognize. They all come from very different time periods, that’s for sure. It’s so weird…

Ah, shit. I have to get going. I’m supposed to be meeting some friends for a dinner. Note to self: Bring up the lack of sleep, the paintings, and reread a few stories in Grimm’s Fairy Tales.
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collage - pink

(no subject)

According to the date on my last entry, it’s been at least two weeks since my last entry. That should be a testament to how busy my life has been lately. I’m exhausted, so I’ll just stick to bullet points:

- Claire is in London on a month-long assignment. I am very jealous.
- Cecile and I are getting along better. I still haven’t met her boyfriend.
- School is starting soon. I can’t believe I’m in my final year already. Where the hell does the time go?
- Work is fucking insane. Seriously. What is with so many women having babies all at once in the late summer? I haven’t had a day off since the last time I posted this.

Mr. E has been lingering around more often lately. It’s nice.

I haven’t been sleeping so well lately, though. That’s not so nice. And I think… I don’t know. I need to talk to certain people. They can help me figure things out.
Places - Paris


Well, judging from the time on my computer, I figure it would be appropriate to refer to it as “yesterday”, but all the same…

First things first: Being awakened by your stupid older brother on an important day is not a good way to start the aforementioned day off. Seems his equally stupid little girlfriend shot herself one too long a line and is currently straddling life and death in the hospital. The cops are questioning her friends. He’s freaking out. He wanted me to do him a favor. “Hold a duffel bag for me. Just for a little while.” I hung up on him and went back to bed.

I’d be lying if I said I loved him if only because he’s my brother. I don’t. I can say that with a certainty. Gilly’s an idiot who doesn’t listen to reason. If the cops arrest him for the dope, I won’t be posting bail.

But I digress. After that phone 3a.m. interruption, I went back to sleep. And then…

- I woke up. Called in sick. (I’d asked for the day off, but they forgot to schedule it.)
- Blared Pink Floyd and Joy Division. Woke Cecile. (Made her an apology breakfast.)
- Went to Starbucks. Drank a hot venti mint-flavored mocha with whip. (His favorite.)
- Went to Subway. Had his favorite sandwich. (Barry gave it to me for free.)
- Went to the market. Bought a bouquet of calla lilies. (They threw in a vase for free.)
- Stopped at a botanica. Picked up a blue candle. (I forgot to bring one from home.)
- Went to the cemetery. Had the biggest shock of my life. (And realized Viticus was telling the truth about a lot of crazy-sounding things.)

I basically owe Viticus the cheesiest dish I can find. Seriously. What can’t that man do? The hours I spent with my dear Mr. E were bittersweet, but heavy on the sweet.

I spent the rest of the day watching The Wall and Sweeney Todd and I finally picked up Control but haven’t watched that yet. Something about the way he died bothers me.

I also need to be nicer to Cecile. I’ll work on that. Maybe I’ll let her invite her British import over for dinner this weekend. How bad could it be?
collage - pink

Only gay vampires should be sparkly. Unless you live in Anne Rice’s world.

Still haven’t picked a set of lyrics.

I can’t tell if Cecile was annoyed or intrigued enough by Viticus to forget she apparently has a “boyfriend”. I better let her know he’s off-limits.

Met up with Claire for coffee earlier tonight. Viticus tagged along but he spent most of the night buried in his notebook and only speaking when spoken to. He had a rough night of sleeping and asked if he could stay at the apartment while I was at work. (Also, I think Claire’s repeated attempts to alternately thank him for saving my life and hook us up were wearing at him.) He’s asleep on my couch again and planning to go visit a friend in the morning, but hopefully he’s okay…

At some point in the evening, Claire pulled out the new Stephanie Meyer book. The following conversation ensued…

Me: Oh, my God. You bought the fucking book. I can’t believe you bought it!
Viticus: Which is it?
Me: It’s that--that new one. That new vampire book.
Claire: Breaking Dawn. And I even went to the release party.
Me: Oh my God.
Viticus: I don’t get it. What’s wrong with it?
Me: The woman doesn’t know a thing about vampires. That’s what’s wrong.
Claire: What’s wrong with her vampires, Al? Edward Cullen’s a total sexpot!
Me: Edward Cullen is a sparkly vampire who walks around in the sunlight. How do you NOT see anything WRONG with that?
Claire: Hello! Total sexpot!
Viticus: Aren’t vampires destroyed by the sun?
Me: Exactly! And they aren’t supposed to sparkle! Not even Anne Rice’s gay vampires did that!

At which point I got called an elitist and old-fashioned. But seriously, unless you’re a half-vampire with a mission to slay other vampires, stay out of the sun. Although even Blade was a little questionable…
collage - brown

Baked ziti brings people together.

Cecile is at her boyfriend’s for the night. Hallelujah.

Apparently I’m still capable of making a baked ziti with extra cheese decent enough for there to be no leftovers afterward. I made a pretty big pan (because even though he doesn’t look it, the boy can eat), but it’s gone. All gone. So now we’re watching movies and working our way through a chocolate cheesecake we picked up from a bakery after I got off work. I think he’s going to help me with my hair color soon, but judging from the way he’s yawning and sort of snuggling next to me on the couch…

(He picked me up from work like he just walked off a stage, with his guitar strapped to his back and dressed in a leather jacket and aviators. I think I am now the envy of the female staff on the maternity ward.)

It’s amazing how my mood instantly picks up whenever Viticus comes around. It’s like I’ve known him my whole life, like he’s that friend who knows everything about you (even the darker parts) and doesn’t care because he knows how good you really are. Ean was like that, but in a different way. With Ean it felt uncomfortable at first; with Viticus it’s always been comfortable. I feel safe and I feel sane with him.

I guess it’s because he understands things that Claire can’t or doesn’t. He doesn’t try to convince me that I’m being silly or that I need to move on. He just accepts it.

Also? He’s one hell of a musician. I scribble out songs here and there, but he was playing me some of his earlier and it’s…oh my God. I convinced him to let me copy some lyrics up at the cost of having to sing in front of him.

I suck at singing. I know I do. He’s very good at making me feel like I don’t.

Now just comes picking the right set of lyrics to put up…
collage - red and yellow

Getting to know you…or me…something like that.

1] State your name and business.
Allys and my business is photography.

2] What kind of mindset are you in right now?
Tired, waiting for next week...

3] Who's your favorite superhero?

4] Who's your favorite supervillain?
The Joker. I feel so old school...

5] If you could, at this very moment, walk into any store and have anything from it free, what would you get?
A lovely new Macbook Air. Something my current paycheck won't cover.

6] Who do you want to win the Presidential Election?

7] Who do you THINK will win the Presidential Election?
Obama. I know he's mostly just a good speaker, but he's the lesser of two evils in comparison to McCain.

8] Do you trust flowers?
Only if they're gardenias...

9] Do you like incense?
It kind of sends me into a sneezing fit.

10] Do you smoke? And if yes, what?
If someone offers me a cigarette, I'll take one and be set for a long time. These days my lighter gets used mostly for candles, though...

11] Name one person off the top of your head that you trust everything to.

12] What's something coming up that you're excited and / or anxious about?
Ean's birthday.

13] Are you superstitious at all?
I have my beliefs.

14] Do you like reading?
Too much, perhaps!

15] If you could remodel your room in any way, how would you do it?
I'd probably give it more of a Moulin Rouge feel. Make it look more like Christian's room/apartment... That would be kind of neat.

16] Name two things you missed that you would've loved going to.
Opening night of The Dark Knight with Claire and ComiCon. Stupid work...

17] Give a few lines from the song you're listening to right now. know it's not the end.
We'll always be good friends.
The letters have been sent on...

So always were so free.
You'll see, I promise we'll be
Strangers when we meet,
Strangers on the street,
Lovers while we sleep...

18] Where did your MySpace name come from?
It's my name...

19] Are your fingernails painted?
No. Maybe I should paint them.

20] Honestly, how many hours of sleep do you think you've gotten in the last six or seven days?
Not a lot.

21] Is your hair it's natural color?
Far from it.

22] Name one person you'd really like to punch in the face, whether or not you have a reason.
That guy I found on my couch a couple days ago, whoever he was. I didn't like the way he looked at me.

23] Do you think people have a tendency to perpetuate stereotypes, even or maybe.
Oh, of course. Who doesn't?

24] Any insults you love from other languages?
There are too many in the French language I love to list.

25] Do you watch porn?
It's good for a laugh or two, but I don't get anything else out of it.

26] What's one physical trait that you really, really love on a person?
Their eyes.

27] Any funny conversations today?
Not today, but yesterday, at the shrink's...

"What the hell am I paying you for?"
"You don't. Your insurance does."
"Then what is my insurance paying you for?"

28] Do you prefer even or odd numbers?
Odd. There's always a middle ground with odd numbers.

29] Do you hate it when people post bulletins and do that thing where they delete questions and put things like WHERE'D NUMBER WHATEVER GO? instead of just saying that they deleted it?
I don't do these things often enough to get annoyed by that.

30] Did this survey kill a little bit of your boredom?
I guess...

I think, perhaps, I might look into getting a cat. Unless, of course, Cecile is still afraid of cats. Then maybe I’ll look into a dog or something. I don’t know. My apartment building’s rather animal-friendly and I really like the idea of having something cute and furry around lately. A little terrier sounds like a good idea…

My therapist believes I’m making “considerable progress”. He doesn’t really like the idea that I’m still visiting the patients on the psych ward at work, though. Thinks it is “unhealthy” for me to “expose” myself to that sort of environment, as if mental illness is as easy to catch as the common cold or leprosy or something. He also thinks it’s a bad thing for me to visit my dad anytime soon; wants for me to wait until I’ve made more progress before I do that.

Claire is really on me about meeting Viticus, especially after the mugging incident. I’m not sure how I feel about that. I think she might see him as a potential suitor. If only she knew the truth…

Speaking of people meeting people, Cecile wants to me to properly meet the guy she was making out with the other day. She wants to invite him to dinner. Now is not a good timeframe for that. Now is when I’d sooner chew glass than meet one of my cousin’s new love interests.

I’m aware that sounds harsh, and it’s really cliché, but “if you really knew her”…

Maybe I’ll give him a chance. Maybe. Who knows? Maybe he can keep Cecile on the straight and narrow. But right now is not the best time for me to get involved with that. Right now I’m still irritated by the way he looked at me before I told him to leave.
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