I was in line for the restroom at the NYU Skirball Center. A White lady behind me was like,
“I love your blouse.” in a very high energy chirpy way.
“Thank you.” I said matching her high energy chirp
“It’s very happy.” She said.
She’s right. It’s my very happy blue blouse with crazy bright pink birds on it that I wear whenever Spring begins. I love it. Everyone loves seeing it. It’s a fucking cheery ass blouse.
That was the end of that conversation. I’m pretty sure both of us were miserable liars. We had just gotten out of a lecture with Esther Perel about the “Spiritual Crisis of Loneliness in the age of social media and #metoo.
I was super excited all weekend to attend and it was a good talk, very much like what you’ve seen in Esther Perel’s talls if you’ve ever seen her TedTalk or any lectures or workshops she’s done. She engages the audience by saying things like “Stand up if you have ever been having a horrible time with someone and just let it keep going and not said anything?” that peel back the onion of your well guarded pretenses when you stand up with like 90% of the audience.
You laugh and feel not alone but more alone at the same time.
I for one learned that I am one of those people who is in a poly-amorous relationship with husband and my cellphone. I am. That’s me. I know I’m not alone, and it doesn’t make me feel any better…
Not yet anyway.
It’s not like I realized this after the talk. I realized it the next day when I dropped my cellphone face down in the restroom after a PT appointment and cracked the screen.
Rage, sadness, despair, violence….all repressed
All shoved down. I let out a loud FUCK in the street when I got on the sidewalk. In all the years I’ve had a cellphone I have never cracked a screen ever.
But lately I’ve been dropping things all the time. I touch it, it’s on the ground. My fingers are made of butter. I don’t know what the fuck is happening.
But cracking my cellphone screen made me realize that I spend a fair amount of time using my front facing camera which I’m still in mourning over. I also use it to record for my Youtube channel. Yeah, looking at yourself that often probably sounds pretty narcissistic which was another major theme of Esther Perel’s talk. I totally own up to it but to be fair I started experimenting with “selfies” years before cellphones existed using something called a film camera.
And that’s very different from holding a phone up to your face at any given moment for no reason at all.
I had to have the film developed.
Nothing was instant.
It just wasn’t a selfie.
But for now my selfie time is temporarily on hold. And in those moments after I got home, slammed the door, squeezed the anger I felt into a pillow and froze out my husband and my cat, I admit I was being a drama queen.
I can’t afford a new phone! I’m living from check to check. I’m already broke, I can’t afford a new cellphone plan. Apple charges too much to replace screens…
I mean bish the phone still works. I can still listen to music I can get that screen replaced at other places for less than what Apple would charge. The real fear is something else, something deeper. And I just never thought I was one of those people.
Then this morning as I was getting ready for work, my waist beads popped in my jeans.
Something weird is happening. I don’t have the option to sleep through it do I?