No, actually, I haven’t any idea what I’m going to write about next. Oh I have snippets of ideas that come to me in the shower or in the car and I think “yes! That’s it.” But then the day goes on and I get caught up in work or driving Liza to rehearsal or, let’s be honest, hanging out with Kelly on our groovy new sectional sofa watching reality television. Then before I drift off to sleep I think, “oh shoot. I meant to write today.” But by then the idea is gone as fleetingly as it arrived and I’m left to realize that I’ve hit a dry spell.
This is where you should feel free to ask me if I’ve run out of dead family members to write about. True, my pieces about my sister and my parents are among some of my favorites. And while it is tempting to regale you with stories of my Uncle Frank, the Colonel, who parachuted behind enemy lines on D-Day, or my Uncle Billy who worked for Shasta soda, which seemed like the coolest job ever to my10-year old self, or my Aunt Rose, who smoked endless cigarettes and wore glamorous blonde wigs, there’s only so much publicly-sanctioned mourning one can endure so I think I’ll let my dead relatives be for the moment and move on.
But move on to what? What’s on your mind Katie? Well since you asked, my wedding for one. Oh sure we have the caterer booked, the tent, tables and chairs reserved, and even our wedding rings bought but the question that occupies my mind the most these days is this. “What does a 44 year old, gray-haired, 60-pounds overweight lesbian ‘wear to her wedding?” For it never fails that immediately following “congratulations,” Kelly and I hear ‘what are you wearing?” And you know, I’m not someone who gets easily flustered but that question can send me straight to stutter-ville. “Uh…uh… “ I stammer, ‘I have kind of an idea of silvery gray.” “Silvery gray what?“ is really the question. Oh I’ve seen photos of things I’ve loved – wide legged suits with snazzy full backed vests, or long, flowy, empire-waisted dresses with beaded spaghetti straps, but putting those outfits on this body is where the problems start. You see I have a classic fat girl problem when it comes to clothes, I think I’m skinnier than I am. When confronted with the reality of what I look like in an elegant gown I’m slightly confused. ‘Who is that old lady?” I think “and why does she look so ridiculous?” I’m not a very “girly girl” as my daughter would say. I like nice jewelry but rarely wear make-up and my short gray hair is hardly conducive to dramatic tossing or classic up-dos. Of course the one day Kelly and I ventured out to a bridal store we were given a dressing room smack in the middle of two different bridal parties of 20 something women who collectively probably weighed less than I do. Oh sure, our sales associate was sweet as can be and extremely excited about our upcoming nuptials, and the girls outside my dressing room parted helpfully every time I took a hesitant step out to look in the mirror but I have a feeling they were thinking “aww…someone’s mom is here!” I found a photo of a suit that seems right up my alley, but it’s from a British clothing catalog that stops at size 16. That’s right peeps…sixteen is just a size I dream of seeing again someday. I know myself and there is no way I’m getting this body into that suit by October. So, right now I’m deep in classic denial about the fact that eventually I’ll have to come up with something to wear unless I want to get married in my usual weekend outfit of jeans and a 3 button Henley from the Gap (size XXL). I’ll keep you posted on the great wedding outfit search of 2010.
And since you asked, no actually I haven’t lost weight. Although GOODNESS KNOWS I’VE BEEN TRYING! OK, both those statements are only partially true. I’ve lost a few pounds since I started seeing a nutritionist in December and I have changed a lot about the way I eat. No more bagels, no more pizza, pasta only every other week when Liza is in residence, lots and lots of protein and vegetables. And as usual when I make any attempt at changing my habits I discover my one true essential truth: I’m really, really good at being a fat person. When presented with communal munchkins at work or the prospect of an appetizer with my wine when out to dinner with friends I abandon those healthy eating resolves quicker than NBC abandoned Conan O’Brian. And you know, it’s not as if I’m not presented with daily evidence that changing my habits will result in a better body. I count among my best friends two women who have severely had to restrict their eating due to allergies and both of them now sport the bodies of teenage girls. Ok. Ok. I GET it. I’m just not sure I’m willing to DO it. Recently one very, very, thin acquaintance told me I got “too much blind support” for being as heavy as I am that allowed me to think my size was ok, and really it wasn’t rocket science I just had to cut calories and work out more. (DUH). And yes I realize the irritating contradiction about bemoaning my size when it comes to searching for a wedding dress and celebrating the joy of a really, really good cookie dough ice cream cone. And yes I’m human. I’m jealous as hell of women who have the ability to cut out bad things and be all outdoorsy and post on Facebook about their “awesome workouts” or their refreshing hikes. Sometimes I’m so jealous of them I could spit. (This is where you have my permission to say ‘ok Katie, we get it. Move on.”). Well, all I know is that I’m torn between just settling down at the age of 44 and loving myself already and constantly being reminded every day that I am just too large, too tall, too gray, too wrong. Yeah I haven’t figured out the answer either. I’ll get back to you when I do.
And since you asked, all this talk of my weight has put me in a somewhat fragile “place.” Oh please, I’m kidding. For one I’ve never been remotely described as fragile and two, I loathe the use of the words “space” and “place” to describe feelings. If I hear one more person say something like “wow…Tuesdays put me in a really, really bad space,” (which is usually accompanied by some sort of rueful head shake as if to indicate some deep dark pit of despair that only Tuesdays can trigger), I just might loose it. All this spacing and placing is just a way to avoid using actual descriptions of actual emotions. How about trying this on for size? Can we all get behind using words like “angry” or “sad” or “excited” or “frustrated.” I know I’m on the verge of sounding like Dana Carvey’s “Cranky Old Man” character but seriously…enough already. No more space. No more place. Deal?
And since you asked, yeah, do realize I come off as a cranky pants about 99% of the time. My pals on the Mothertalkers site call me the cranky Yankee, one of my best friends has had to explain to her friends that ‘really, I swear, she’s a nice person, she just writes cranky.” My young teenage pals humor me when I ask them things like “who is this annoying girl named Ke$ha, why does she have a dollar sign in her name, why is she on my TV and how can I make her go away?” Yes I realize that at some point I have to be more conscious of this lest I end up like Andy Rooney alone in my office with stacks of books ranting red faced about things like automatic paper towel dispensers or the fact that the world ‘small’ has lost all meaning at movie theater concession stands. Fortunately for me (and possibly unfortunately for you) I am surrounded by several dear friends who make my cranky ravings look like the mellow sounds of Doris Day singing to her puppies and who love me for the snarkmeister I am. But I’ll work on it and let you know how it goes.
And since you asked. I’m ending this piece with no more of an idea what to write about next than I started with. I often wish I were like my friend T. (whose most excellent blog “Uncharted Parent” is linked on the right hand side of this site) who writes gorgeous pieces on really relevant topics. When I try it I feel like a poseur. But, As Kelly has pointed out I do have an opinion on pretty much everything. So I’m open to suggestions. What would you like me to write about? Good Lord that sounded incredibly self-important didn’t it? Trust me, I don’t for one second believe that anything I have to say about anything is remotely important. But yeah, I do like the sound of the keys clack clacking on my Macbook so go ahead and, as Linda Richman would say, “give me a topic.” And no, wiseguy you can not use something like “The Holy Roman Empire was neither holy nor Roman nor an empire.” So throw something my way, and I’ll get back to you. And by the way, thanks for asking.