Thursday, March 30, 2006

On Tests and Drunks

I just got back from a party quite a ways away across campus and have a few thoughts I would like to share. Because I have a blog, I figure this is the time and place in which I should share these thoughts. These thoughts involve taking tests and drunk people - always a dangerous combination. Luckily, they are seperated by about eight hours. Now, everyone is safe and tested. Or something.

I never feel more self-conscious than when I'm taking a test in a large group of people. The problem is that I finish very quickly (you heard that right, ladies). It's a problem that I blame on Stephen Meyer. In first grade, we used to take spelling tests and then race over to the beanbag chair - first one to get there won. My teacher, Mrs. Cohen, was very concerned that we were rushing through our tests just to hold the almighty position of First on the Beanbag Chair. What ended up happening is that we were getting a very large majority of the tests right, just at a much quicker pace than everyone else.

Flash forward to Wednesday, March 29th. The last three days I have had finals in three of my classes in the College of General Studies. The second semester is truncated because there is a month long project called the Capstone that one must complete in a group with four or five other individuals, which I'm diving head first into now. CGS is also broken up into groups called teams, and my team, team X, is made up of about 60 students. When the departments have tests, they put about half of the kids into the big lecture hall to take their multiple choice tests (usually about 110 questions) for social science and natural science.

Today was social science, which included such breathtaking questions as "what war brought America out of isolationism?" and "out of the possible number of political scientists, which one said THIS that would be CONTRADICTORY to their ideas but more so to their IDEOLOGIES." Needless to say, it was fun times. The problem I have is that it's a scantron test and you have an hour and twenty minutes to complete it. Thanks to Meyer and our competitiveness, I'm usually done with half an hour to go. Usually, they won't let you leave. After trying to erase every little smudge and fully color in each bubble, there is still twenty minutes left. No cell phones allowed, no books, so Quicky McQuickerton gets to sit there and do nothing. It's fucking stupendous.

Sometimes, depending on when you're tested, you're let out early. Every time, without fail, when I hand in my test, I get the concerned look from the professor (mine or someone else in the department). "Now, are you sure about this? You can't get it back." I reply with "yes, I'm very sure, it's all your's." "Did you double check all of your answers? If you didn't double check all of your answers, you might have a problem." Once again, I reply, "it's just filling in a bubble, I'm pretty sure I can handle it." "Well, are you really sure about that? In the past, some kids-" and then I walk right by. I can't help the fact that I finish early - it's a gift and a curse (depending on where I am. YES I made the same joke twice!).

Because we really don't have any more formal classes, I went out and had some drinks with a few friends of mine from Team X (it needs an echo, so TEAM X exexexexex....). What was so weird about it was that on my way there, one kid kept talking me up. "Yo, Mike Anton is coming. Yes THE Mike Anton!" When I finally arrived I had a reputation of greatness--in what I don't know, but it was there, as random kids kept going "oh shit, you're Mike Anton!" There were also people on my team that I rarely (never) talked to in class who were incredibly excited to see me. Needless to say, my response was "yeah, it's great to see you too....pal!"

After some time smoozing and doing shots of vodka and tequila (to add to the captain morgans and no food in my stomach - I'm shocked I'm still alive) I went outside to see who I'll call Extremely Drunk Girl stumbling about on the deck. We were on the second floor, and to get up to that part of the house there was a staircase of about 15-20 steps, made of metal, that went up to a deck and then into the house. I started to watch EDG walk towards said steps. Needless to say, I panicked.

She sat down on the first step with her cell phone in her hand while doing the "I'm totally wasted" body move (you know the one - where your entire body starts to move in a wave back and forth like you're on a ship, only you're clearly not). I look at her, I look down the iron steps, and I jump ahead of her as she says "hey wai..wai wha are you doin don't...don't...wha are you doin!?"

It turns out her name is Margot. I got this from one of the few kids in the patio who knew her. One girl, Alicia, who was on my team last year, came over and was like "oh Margot honey are you ok?" Margot, the drunkard, started to lash her head about hitting the steps, sides, and banister. It was an impressive display. At that point, I cradled her head and refused to let her know. And no, before you ask, we had never met until just then. Alicia eventually went inside after trading a "yeah I know who you are" to me (who doesn't - I'm THE Mike Anton!) leaving me alone with Margot.

Margot and I had an interesting conversation. We talked about life, unicorns, puppies, and the increasing defecit spending. Ok, not the spending part. I asked her questions, rubbed her back, tried to keep her awake. She was content moving her ass off of the seat and balancing off of my giant ass legs about a half story above ground. Needless to say, I've been in less precarious and more fulfilling talks in my life. She asked if I was going to take care of her, and I said, "of course." And then she started to rub her hand on my stomach, underneath my hoodie and on my t-shirt. Quickly, she moved to the outside of my jeans and my thighs, later into my pockets. I have never been fondled and felt so dirty in my entire life.

Eventually some more responsible people came and we dragged her up the stairs and into some poor schmuck's bed. I had to pick up her iPod and her cell phone, as one fell out of her pocket and the other fell right onto the ground below, respectively. After dropping her in the bed and procuring some rickety looking paper back for a "just in case" vomit control, I placed her iPod and cell phone on the microwave in the kitchen, because I don't want to look like a thief (THE Mike Anton doesn't steal - he fights for justice with his eye lasers!). Apparently, this happens on a weekly basis, so everything is dandy.

The most interesting part of situations like these is when you go on trusty facebook. Aaahhh facebook - what would you do without it, besides work? I typed in her name and one of the first girls that come up is the one I helped tonight. As I looked, I saw that she is in a relationship with some guy. More so, it seems like a loving one, as there are pictures with the two all over her photo albums and a special "ilu" note in her About Me. And she was feeling me up like she paid for it. Just when I felt like I couldn't be more awkward, it hit a new level. The awkward turtle just laid some eggs (that is a joke for 5 people, so don't be upset if you don't get it).

What did I learn? I hate tests because they make me look fat, drinking 3 types of booze with no food isn't so bad, and drunk chicks scare the shit out of me in every way possible.

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

I just don't know

It might be me, but I think Russell and I are having the greatest conversation in the history of the english language.

Once again, this could only be hilarious to me - it wouldn't be the first time, but I feel like I have to share. For the record, we're talking about the Park Ridge High School tennis team and their season.

KingManton: me too
Bschmuck7: the season wil bhe hovhhyert tgattBschmuck7: \k,jnb
KingManton: ....
“Bschmuck7” signed off at 5:04:46 PM.
Bschmuck7: therse season will be over
KingManton: their?
KingManton: christ man
KingManton: what the hell happened
Bschmuck7: their
Bschmuck7: bdau“Bschmuck7” signed off at 5:06:22 PM.
“Bschmuck7” signed on at 5:08:28 PM.
Bschmuck7: ok
Bschmuck7: their season is over
Bschmuck7: unless they are in states.. they might have one game left of the regular season
KingManton: fuckin' what's going on with your keyboard
Bschmuck7: static friction??? or immature freshman suitemate
Bschmuck7: tkae ur pick
KingManton: thank you russell. thank you very much
Bschmuck7: honestly, the keyboard has a mind of its own
Bschmuck7: its uncontrollable!!!!!!@#!@#$!@#$!$
Bschmuck7: permanent CAPSLOCK.. shit like that

If you put all of the greatest writers in the world in one room, they could NEVER create Russell. Next post is all about my pal Brett.

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

The best years of your life

Whenever college is brought up to anyone who just graduated up to the day that they die goes on and on about how you should savor the years you have in college. They'll rave about how much fun they had and how it stopped, cold, once they graduated. Oh they'll tell you all of the stories, and the kegs, and the girls, and the zaniness of the times. "My god, when you get to college, you're gonna party and have the time of your life!"

So...when is that coming?

It is almost two years into my college experience, possibly almost half way through (hi, grad school), and I'm still waiting for this carefree, who-gives-a-shit time to happen. As of right now, it hasn't. Well, I guess you can say it comes in flashes as I have a test in Natural Science in about half an hour and instead of studying I'm writing stupid "deep" things in a blog. Overall, this experience has done nothing but make me worry.

I was in a good place at the end of high school. I was going to go to college, I was going to make new friends, meet new people, and start on the road to becoming a filmmaker. There was no second guessing, no questions to my life's work; since freshman year of high school I knew what I wanted to do with my life. It's a wonderful luxury when choosing a college, as well as picking a major. The problem is actually getting there.

Once I'm at school, I realize that a lot of people really want to get into film, too. A lot of people. Then, I thought about all of the possible jobs and openings one could have as a filmmaker. Finally, I thought about all the possibilities I would have making a career out of a life in movies. Then I yelled out "holy shit" because the odds of actually making it finally occurred to me.

People would ask me as I went through the motions of applying to schools what my major would be. Confidently, I would answer "film," and they would smile and say "oohh, that's interesting!" which means "oohh you're fucked, kid. Take business." Now that I'm actually in college and going head-long into being a film major when I'm asked where I go to school, what year, and what major, I get an even better response of "great!" Of course, that really means, "why the fuck didn't you go into business?!"

The real slap of reality came from my friend Geoff. He's a pre-med at University of Richmond, obviously not doing too bad for himself, and he asked me what I'm going to do after graduation. "Well, I'm going to go into film, maybe writing," I replied. He asked, "well how do you go about getting a job like that?" You know when you're asked the simplest question and you have absolutely no idea how to answer it? LIke when a kid asks why the sky is blue, and you have that three second pause to try and formulate an answer, but cannot, so you come up with "cause it is?" I replied with, "through...people...I guess." It was at that point, driving down the Garden State Parkway in a Jeep Wrangler that I fully realized that I might be fucked.

Over the coming weeks I have decided that I will double-major in History. I have rationalized that I like history, find it interesting, and would like to study it as a back up. In reality, that means "shit, well, if I go to grad school for film and I don't have a career in five years, I guess I'll just go be miserable and shape the youth of America." I think I finally figured out why some of my teachers were self-loathing, miserable people.

So now instead of waking up in a strange girl's bed (who, strangely enough, looks a lot like a guy...heeeeyyyy, wait a minute! WHOOO COLLEGE IS CRAZY!!!1) I am sitting at a laptop trying to figure out what to do with my life. I guess there are two options when it comes to college: either you drink yourself stupid for four years, learn nothing, and go into life with a worthless piece of paper that says "I paid a lot of money for this document and frame" OR I try and learn as much as possible for four years, learn a bit, and go into life with a worthless piece of paper that says "I paid a lot of money for this document and frame and should have spent more on illegal substances."

The point of the matter is that college, to me, is nothing more than a slight pause between childhood and adulthood. In four years, you are to bridge the maturity gap and come out ready to change the world! Ok, maybe just ready to hold a steady job. For me, college is that in between where everything I know has been changed (friends, loved ones, etc.), and now I'm here, on my own, trying to develop into a person that is ready to take on everything that's ahead of me, and I know that no matter how hard I try, I'll never be ready.

I'm diving headfirst into a pool that could be a hundred feet deep or an inch. Probably a bad analogy since I'd probably die anyway because I can't swim. Man, that's a bleek analogy. Ok, ok how about.... I'm walking in the dark and I don't know whether I'll find a door or hit the coffee table and get one of those stinging bruises that won't go away for a few weeks. No, that one is just weird. Analogies...analogies....

I'm about to take a test and I have no idea if I'm prepared for it or not. The only thing that I'm confident in is that, if I walk down Commonwealth without getting hit by a car (which is always a 25% possibility), I will take that test. Sure, I can push it off and avoid it, but what good does that do me in the long run? The test is almost here, and I'm scared, because I don't know what it's on, what it's about, whether or not it's going to challenge or bore. The only thing I can do is hope that it turns out alright.

No wait, I'm playing Duck Hunt, and...and I'm shooting the ducks (beacuse skeet shooting is for pussies) and I'm close to the screen, but not too close, but close enough to like, make me shoot better, and then the dog comes up cause I missed one and missing isn't really a bad thing cause everyone makes mistakes, but the dog is still laughing at me and I realize a lot because....

I'm sticking with the test thing.

wish me luck

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Fashion, Michaels and MTV Greek Tragedies

Here is a giant grabbag of various ideas that I've been kicking around for a while. It'll probably be long, so bare with me, folks.

I will freely admit that I know a lot of things, but I clearly don't understand fashion. It has been happening for a while, and I simply cannot understand new trends. For almost my entire life I have worn jeans and t-shirts. It hasn't failed me yet. Now, there are so many different things going on that I can't keep up. When did it become necessary or good to have shoes that have little rubber spikes all over them in places that don't make contact with the ground, and thus are just unnecessary and worthless. I guess that's the point?

I will never understand Uggs. They are giant, cumbersome, and ridiculous looking. More so, you need a special spray to keep them from getting damaged by water. They're boots - aren't they built specifically for that purpose? That's like me buying a shower curtain, but I need to spray it down cause it's made out of cotton. They're expensive as hell, too, and they just keep your feet warm (or incredibly damp). Don't even start with me on skirts and Uggs. Yeah, I want a chick who looks like she has legs as thick as a pencil and feet like a Flinstone's appliance. Sign me right up.

The threat is no longer with just Uggs, though. As pointed out to me by faithful reader Lindsey, there are things called Moon Boots which look so incredibly ridiculous I don't know how anyone could buy them and walk around not feeling like an asshole. They are HUGE. Girls are willingly putting shoes on their feet that the mob applies to guys that snitch before they are thrown into the Hudson River.

What baffled me more than anything was popped collars and aviators (or as I call it, "The Boston College"). These fashions originated as a throw back to the 1980s, a time which is widly known for its ridiculous and terrible fashion choices. But here we are, willing to put those objects back on without the tongue-in-cheek necessary for such a move. You should have some sort of foresight that when you look back ten years from now you're not going to proud of what you wore. This is guarenteed. You know how? CAUSE IT HAS ALREADY HAPPENED! There is an entire generation now that is trying to shun wearing popped collars and aviators, but we are willfully diving in head first. Didn't we learn from Machiavelli? We must learn from the mistakes of the past.

That's really why I'm looking forward to the next few years when people start harkening back to the nineties so I can see some girls dressed like Blossom.




Michael, as a name, is not better or worse than any other name. Jeffrey is a good name, so is Sean...maybe not Chester, but, for the most part nothing about Michael really stands out. Except for the fact that everyone is named that. I am named Michael only because of my father, who refused to have a child named Patrick (it was later moved to my middle name as my mom claimed "you never said anything about a middle name"). For my entire life I have never been the only Michael, never being a unique little flower. Sure, it's better to have a traditional name than something out of Hollywood: Hi, this is my beautiful baby boy, Woodtable.

My problem lies in the fact that I never got my way in what my name should be. From first through sixth grade, I almost always had a class with another Michael, and he WAS a Michael. He was incredibly smart, later scoring a 1600 on his SATs. Would play basketball, but wasn't very athletic, nor was he one of the more popular kids. He was a Michael, and there's nothing wrong with it; that's what he was. I, however, was a Mike. The name alone sounds fun, exciting, energetic, and dammit, that's what I was.

But, every year when the teachers realized there were two Michaels, something had to change. What was incredibly unfair was the fact that, although my last name started with the letter "a," I never got to choose - HE did. He knew how great of a name Mike was, and when the teacher would be startled and ask him "oh, there are two Michaels, would you prefer Mike?" he would say yes. And man, was I jealous. One year I tried a pre-emptive strike to go for Mike, but it just didn't work out, as the woman was a nut from Nebraska and hated me for seemingly no reason.

It got worse in High School. Out of 82 people, around 40 boys, at one point there were eight Michaels. At that point, Mike, Michael, it didn't matter - it was too confusing. I finally gave up and stopped going by Michael (or Mike if I ever found a way to claim it) and retreated to being called Anton. That turned into Manton and here I am now, with a new name but harboring resentment from First Grade. The more things change...the more I hate my name.




I really hate to say it, but MTV really needs to be commended. Sure, the "Music" in the title is surely nothing but a joke now, but I will give them many applause for their incredibly terrible dating shows Next, Room Raiders, and Date My Mom. Never before have I had a better appreciation of Greek Tragedy.

Everyone has read, or at least heard of, Oedipus Rex, the poor man who tried against his might to not bang his Mom but every time he tried to avoid it he was making steps to ensure their terribly inappropriate actions. The whole point of Greek tragedy is that the audience knows how the story's going to end, but we all cruely watch anyway, anxiously awaiting some schmuck to completely ruin his life while he thinks he's steering clear of. It's sort of like why people watched Making The Band knowing full well that O-Town would go absolutely nowhere.

With MTV's dating shows, we know all of the contestants and what they all look like. Unfortunately, the poor person who is forced to date their possible date's Mom, or search their skanky ass room, or see them roll of a bus have no idea what they look like. It gets worse for each show, too. I have developed a chart, where (in terms of most attractive to least) it goes Next to Room Raiders to Date My Mom.

The most extreme example of Greek tragedy is Date My Mom. The viewers get to see all of the girls as they go through terribly scripted (yes, scripted) little segments showing off how fun and interesting they are! Most of these girls are complete messes, but when prompted, the Moms will say how beautiful their daughters are. We know they're they're lying. Hell, we know that they know that THEY'RE lying, but that poor guy (or girl, on the rare lesbian show) has no idea that the "Britney Spears" that they are expecting is really "Britney Spears with eight months pregnant face."

When all of the moms are lined up to reveal their daughters, there is no greater moment in television. There is always at least one somewhat attractive girl and one horsefaced horror. Slowly but surely the dater knocks off one of the Moms, revealing their daughters. Sometimes, they make the right choices, and the relief on their faces and scripted lines show you how relieved they are. But others, like Russian roulette ending with most of your thoughts spread on the wall behind you, it just ends badly.

We want to help. We want to yell "NO RANDY NOT HER!!!" But no matter how loud we yell, or how hard we try to reach through the tv and smack him, he will take out the girl with the black hair and the skunk-like blond streak up the middle who falls coming out of the car. Deep down, though, we're so happy that he gets the ugly one. That's what you get for going on a fucking MTV dating show, stupid.

Before I'm asked, I give no respect or admiration to My Own or Parental Control. My Own is 22 minutes of wasted interviews and time just so the guy can pick the hottest chick there, irregardless of how much she looks like the celebrity she is supposed to look/sound like. When you have white girls and asian girls on for Alicia Keys, I have to ask: why? Parental Control is the most poorly acted show I have ever seen, and I've seen that douche on One Tree Hill (happy face...now sad face! Beautiful, put that on the air NOW!). One show, a girl had been dating this guy for three years, wasn't picked, and left saying "well he's a dork anyway." Yeah. Ok.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

The reasons that this exists

It has come to my attention that over the past few weeks, this site and my writings have gotten a larger audience than before. Because of the tracker in my profile that most of you go through, I have a good idea of the sampling of the readers. Because of the recent topics and their relevance to the High School, there have been more readers from that sect; it's only natrual. However, I have received a complaint on content that I would like to address, as I never really have before.

This blog, or whatever better name you want to call it, is incredibly self-serving. I will be the first to admit that this is completely about me becase, well, that's the point. When this started out it was simply a way for me to keep my writing skills honed. Painters paint, lawyers law, and alcoholics die of liver failure--it's the natural order of things. At no point did I ever imagine that so many people have taken an interest.

Once I realized I had an audience, there was a slant towards entertainment. It's undeniable, and I refuse to stand here (sit?) and say that I don't write things for a reaction, because I'm not a liar...most of the time. The point of this is to keep writing as well as a personal catharsis. Ever since I hit a weird depression in ninth grade I turn to writing as a means to express how I'm feeling, since I don't punch hard enough to get out all of my aggression. When I get upset, be it angry or any other emotion, my first instinct is to rant. This blog facilitates that function.

At no point did I ever think of this as a gossip column nor a way to get back at people. If it ever does become that, then I have really lost it and should start writing an emo-riffic live journal about how life is pain and listen only to The Cure. As I mentioned in a previous entry (the last one, I believe) my dad asked me why people read. I feel that it's both entertaining and possibly could help other people go through their problems or what have you. Maybe that's just too self-serving, as if I really make a difference or have an effect on people, but I think it is valid.

I am a very open person and I share most of my experiences with people. On this blog, I have already tip-toed the line between decency and cruelty, and I'm sure to walk that highwire again. It was possible that if this were less known about, if I didn't publicize it on my facebook profile or have a link on my screen name, that I could be more liberal with what I say. Although I don't believe I would, the readership as of late has put a forced responsibility on me to make sure I don't cross that line into contemptible areas.

I felt, and still do feel, that my writings about my experiences with my girlfriend as of late are printable. I think people could relate to, or at least see a fascination in, a person who doesn't know if the light he's seeing is the twilight or the dawn in his relationship. But, at no point do I want this to fuel the fires of gossip or to have my feelings perverted against others. I write what I experience, and I hope people come away with a laugh or a thought, but I don't want them to come away with ammunition.

Conversely, I outright refuse to allow someone else to censor what I feel. At times it might be awkward to be reading your experiences up on a page on the internet that anyone can see. Talk to any of the girls in Manton vs. Women, I'm sure you'll get a similar response. However, I feel that I take the proper precautions to make it both tasteful and protective of the intimate and personal moments that were shared. As much as I refuse censorship, I refuse to let this devolve into a "he said/she said;" we are all more mature than that.

In closing, I would like to apologize to anyone with whom I have offended, put in an awkward position, or "outed" in any way. That is not my intention. If I feel that a topic is worth writing about, I will write it and do my best to keep it credible. That is all that I can guarentee. The content itself will fluctuate, and I cannot stop that if I want to feel true to myself, to keep this as the catharsis that it was in the beginning. Also, I would like to apologize to anyone who reads this solely for giggles because I haven't really been in the mood the past few weeks to be happy jokey funny man. If you want some Manton comedy asap, check out my radio show here. I'm going to update later and give you all something to laugh about, because hell, I need it, too.

Lyrics have been a popular way of saying how you feel, so I'm going to leave with something from P.O.S.

I've tried to walk the right side of the tracks
But I've hopped a couple trains
Mom would cry if she knew, perhaps
But I can stand who I am
And face the day straight knowing
Nothing can ever change what I've been saying

No one will ever be like me


all i can do is try to do what's right
-manton

Thursday, March 16, 2006

The Fallout

It's late, I'm listening to Miles Davis, and I haven't had an update in far too long. There is much to catch up on, so I'd like to fill you faithful readers in on what happens when you break up with your girlfriend of two years and you start talking to other people.

First off, I got a lot of readership on the "break up" blog, and with the cryptic away messages of "it's over, 2 years +, etc." it garnered a bit of attention. The reactions ran the gamut and came from every single direction. Mostly, people were shocked it happened, pegging Haley and I to be getting married. When, I'm not sure, as I don't think we're legal to get married unless I move down to Alabama and own a pig for more than three months. It's nice to know that people held your relationship in high esteem...I guess.

One of my friends heard the news and got really angry. He was a big supporter of Haley and I being together, but for some reason (probably because of ugly break ups in the past) something came out of him. Sure, he is also usually turned up to eleven so this shouldn't come as some surprise, but he got ME so fired up that my Dad had to get off of the floor in front of the TV (unheard of) to walk into my room and say to me, "I heard you on the phone, please, don't be angry." I said "no, it's just my friend, he gets that out of me." His lease on time away from the allure of television was too great, as he just walked away with his hands in the air.

One of the people who worked in my dentist's office, who I've known for about ten years now, was relieved to hear the news. "Good," she said, " because you two are in two different places in every way possible. It's good for you both to just end it now and move on. I got married when I was sixteen!" I had a few reactions. First, I felt it was funny that she condemned our relationship without knowing my girlfriend. Secondly, sixteen? Dear christ! And finally I will always hold her in high esteem because she gives me floss, a toothbrush AND tooth paste when I'm out of the chair. She also gives me an etch-a-sketch while she puts in my flouride; an act that should never go unrecognized.

Another friend was incredibly depressed. She, like many others, thought I was joking around and refused to believe it. She went though the different levels of dealing with this like I did, the whole rejection->anger->acceptance set of steps. As of right now, a week and a half after Haley and I split up (for who knows what amount of time), my friend is still pissed at me and believes that love is now a farce. I'm not that comfortable with being in charge of the validity of love, especially when my lover is 225 miles away and two-and-a-half years younger than I. I feel like the president, although people still like me, even though they question all of my actions.

I figured I would share this because a lot of you that read this for whatever reason (after telling my dad that I had quite the number of readers last time he asked 'why do they care?' and I still haven't given an answer - leave one in the comments if you want) and would like to know that you are important. Hell, one of you I asked out THAT night based totally on emotion (sorry again to all parties involved). It's nice to know that no matter how old you get, you can always be the talk of the ole' High School.

Then again, it helps to be seeing a girl who attends said high school.

Sunday, March 05, 2006

gone

From possible death to heart ache, this blog is really running the comedy gamut, folks.

Tonight, Haley and I broke up after being together for (slightly) more than two years. It's hard to say that, actually, because it just seems like such a finality. After all we had been through, all the distance we travelled, all of the experiences we shared, it's...over. Like that.

I've had girlfriends in the past, as you can read about on this very site, but there hasn't been anything that has had the scope or importance as this relationship. In fact, almost no relationship in my life has meant as much as the one I shared with her. It's more than just a relationship - it was my life for a long, long time. It's weird to think that you can give so much to another person, someone you just happened to meet during a volleyball game. After almost 20 years of life, I never had something so extraordinary impact my life.

It's hard to try and cope with it when you now how great things were, and you don't understand why they can't continue. She either wanted to move on, or try new things, or I don't know...all I know is that her plans didn't involve me. Bless her heart, she tried to fight it, but in the end, she believed that she has to go and try new things out. This all started off as a one month "we're still dating but we can do whatever" break. I felt that wasn't good enough - if she wanted to explore new things, I wouldn't hold her hand through it. I got what I wanted, and it's the worst thing I've ever willfully accepted.

I've always prided myself with being good with words, but I can't muster up the right adjectives nor the correct nouns to follow them. After I left her place, I came back with the feeling of "well, it's her problem, I'll be fine." Then, I got angry at her for throwing this away after all of this time. Now, now I'm just disappointed, not really of her, but that what I thought would happen didn't. I figured we'd break up - hell, we've been dating through half of her high school career, the end would have to come. But I never figured now. I never figured soon. I always thought some time in the unknown future, maybe a future devoid of this hurt and pain.

I was foolish to think that this wouldn't be anything but devastating, as it certainly is just that. Most of the "pack it away" stuff has already been done: prom picture in a frame, wallet photo, stand alone shot, all put away in the "Haley box" and neatly secured in my closet. I went onto facebook and after only being "In A Relationship with Haley Brewer" for about a week, took that down. Then, I changed my profile from "we belong together" to "vacant." It's not just a play on words, it's just suitable.

"We belong together" is just as suitable, I feel. We do. That's not just me trying to rationalize things or try and make it better. I truly feel that we work on every single level. The original plan was to last a month and then see what happens after that month...but we'd still be dating. Now that I severed this, I just don't know what will happen. I love her, I love her with everything I have, but she just isn't interested anymore. She tried to stick it out for whatever reason, be it loyalty or comfort, but she had already made up her mind before I came home. What I regret the most about this experience is that she didn't give me the opportunity to show her why we were in love for so long. All I had was a disinterested girlfriend to come home to. That hurt the most.

It's hard to complain because I had such an amazing two years. It's selfish, but so accepted, so I guess it's ok at this point. I've been writing this thing over the last hour between the ims and a call, so I don't even know what I'm talking about. I don't want to look up at what I've written, because I just...I'm sure you understand. I want her to be happy, and I think she'd be happiest with me, but that's not for me to decide anymore. I'm powerless to stop her leaving my life, and it drives me crazy. I gave her everything, and if she doesn't want it, I can't help it.

Here's to new beginnings - a sham to cover up the fact that I want the old way to continue.

I'll try and put something funny up later. We'll see. This is getting far too serious for my liking.

Saturday, March 04, 2006

untitled

note: this was written a few hours after the event, while being awake for more than 24 hours. Some names could possibly be incorrect, same with spellings of those names (even if they aren't the right names in the first place). Also, this is probably rife with simple grammatical and spelling errors. Please try and overlook those facts (or, in this case, misnamed and terribly worded "facts") and see an account as I experienced it. Thank you.

About three months ago I was roped in by Mr. Kovacs, my old sophmore/senior English teacher, to help out at the annual Muscular Dystrophy Association Soccer Marathon, held at my old high school. It just so happened that it was being run by my girlfriend, Haley. Because I was seeing her--and beacause I feared Kovacs--I accepted. It was to come the day my Spring Break started, leading to lots of fun with sleep deprivation. Earlier today (Friday, the day of the marathon) I bought a four-pack of Mountain Dew's AMP energy drink to keep me awake.

The Marathon was sort of a disaster to start with. First, a giant snow and ice storm came on the day before hand, moving that night's girl's state game at my high school (the same sight as the marathon) to Friday night. That pushed the Marathon to 9:00 PM, which peeved the faculty and was a difficult time management game with the 7th and 8th graders who had to leave at Midnight. Second, the sound system was on the fritz, prompting me to bring my own. Third, the food would be a bit colder than normal. And for me, fourth was the fact that Haley and I are going through some issues presently, and we got to see each other for about 10 hours straight.

The good news is that the time worked out well, we got the food a bit later (although there wasn't enough) and the sound system worked, leaving me to unpack the stuff later on Saturday. Haley and I sat next to each other and acted like lawyers trying to reach a settlement - we never came to a conclusion. Kovacs interrupted at one point and asked me to go by the freezing cold door to make sure no kids left early and unsupervised. I pulled out my "How NOT To Write A Script" book, which elicited many questions as to what I was reading. I only got about 10 pages in, but I know the wonders of columns.

Sometime as I read and tried to ignore my hated 50 Cent blasting from the gym, it got eerily quiet. I was sitting in a way where I was just off to the side of the doors that lead into the main gym, so when I stood up to see what happened, it was a bit shocking. I heard something about a seizure and a kid named Porter, who I knew only as the kid that sort of resembled Napoleon Dynamite. I never met the kid, but I knew right away something was up with him. At one point, about 5-10 minutes before, he walked over to my guard post and watched me read. I was more than ready to explain the title to him, but he walked away. Now, as I peered in, I saw a body slightly shaking on the hardword court with Mr. Kovacs crouching over him, with his head nestled on a sweatshirt.

As soon as I went inside, I looked to my right to see Jamie Sacco balling into Dan Wyda...Woulda....Dan's arms. I just started to run. I can't explain it, I don't even know why, but I just ran inside as the people were quietly shooed into the stands. After running toward the middle of the court, barely ducking under the volleyball net, I see another teacher there to help all night, Mr. B. He says that he just called 911 as I was about to say I was going to. Instead, I pivoted, ran back to my post, quickly rushed on my jacket, propped the doors open, and ran to the street outside. Almost immediately a cop car showed up. I flagged it down (as if he wouldn't know where he was going), and the officer got out. I told him where the kid was, middle of the court, just in front of the bleachers. He started asking me questions like, "did he hit his head?" and "is he still conscious?" to which I only mumbled an answer of "I don't know, I don't know, I just came to get you, he's inside, he's right there." A second car came, and I waited for him to walk past me. I don't know why.

I then ran past the eerily silent bleachers, under the volleyball net set up across half court, and into the coaches room across the gym and out of the hall to find Haley, her mom Mrs. Brewer, and a girl named Gaby frantically rifling through tons of papers, trying to find his information so that (we?) they could call his parents and inform them. I know at some point I ran back out of the gym, probably to inform Mr. Kovacs that we were looking for the info as he stayed helping the boy, as he did the whole time. I heard something about him being blue, but getting lighter. I started to run back towards the coaches room when I felt my right shoe completely untie and become really lose. Taking the shoe in my right hand mid-run, I threw it at the wall. You can ask me a thousand times, it was the first, and most effective, though that came to mind.

The women above were still seaching through the multitudes of papers when I hopped in to do the same, sans my right shoe. We couldn't find his sheet, and realizing that she might have left it at home, Haley raced (and I mean raced) back to her house and found it. The only problem was that the sheet didn't have her phone number. I dialed in a 411 with the address Haley gave me over the phone, now enscribed in green Sharpie on the top of my left hand. 411 couldn't give me a number based soley off the address. I threw in Porter's (I don't even know if that's his name, honestly) last name, but no match came up with the name and address.

Kovacs by then had left the kid to the police and was in the war room trying to figure out a way to get the phone number. Gaby suggested a list for track kids in which there were a slew of emergency numbers for him. After finding a custodian or someone with a key into that office, the sheet had 3 lines crossing out the numbers. Mrs. Brewer and Kovacs dialed them all, and found that they were all to other people. Haley arrived back at the school with the sheet and the women's signature, with a different last name. We 411ed that name and adress and finally got a number.

During this whole time, I was walking back and forth between the coaches room and center court relaying information (can't find a number, found a number, not the right number, found a number, it works, his Dad's on the phone). Each time I came back there was a new member or group to the set standing around the body on the floor. First it was the EMTs with a stretcher, then another cop, then another one. Once the police were alerted that we had the boy's father on the phone, one officer went in to talk with him about medical history, etc. while the EMTs started to load Porter onto a stretcher. Once again I ran to prop open the doors which I ironically was guarded to protect to help the crew out as they wheeled him away into the ambulance. They sort of slightly ran into the metal folding chair that I used to protect the confinement of the kids inside the gym. After the stretcher pulled into the ambulance, I frantically moved the folding chair out of the way and moved a big wooden box-like structure that was used to sit on no more than two inches away from the door. I was doing my part, and it was abolutely worthless, yet it made perfect sense. I stood in the cold, without my jacket, watching the ambulance leave, and holding the doors open for the two police officers left.

Just afterwards, I came back in to see the gym full of life again, with kids moving around and grabbing their Dukin' Donuts drinks while others started playing volleyball. I sat on the side after asking Haley if she was alright, needed a hug, what have you. She said she was fine and moved past me. I grabbed a seat on the first row of bleachers by the coaches room, and my (mostly Haley's) friend Mel sat next to me; close enough for comfort, but far enough way for distance. She started saying how she wanted to work with challenged kids, even knowing what to do in this sort of situation, but she froze. She lamented how after all of that training, she just couldn't handle it, and stood there, but shoved a sweatshirt under him so that he wouldn't keep banging his head on the floor.

I wrapped my arm around her and sort of hugged her while caressing her left arm as she sort of teared up. Then, to my right, I see the sisters Sacco sit down, first Sammy, a freshman, then Jamie, a sophomore. Sammy was distraught, and was talking to Haley while I was trying to comfort Mel. Once Jamie sat down in a terrible state, Haley moved over to her as I started talking to Sammy while another of Haley's friends, Cassie, took up with Mel. Sammy was upset because she saw him fall down, didn't think anything of it, and walked away. She heard someone say that he was having a seizure behind him, and she stood there, motionless, before either calling for or getting Kovacs.

Afterwards, I was congratulated in an odd way, saying that I did a good job during the little crisis. All I did was run back and forth and throw my shoe needlessly at the wall. I was questioned about why I did that almost as much as "what is the name of the book?" The truth is, everyone came together and helped, big or small. Mel saved head injuries by getting a sweatshirt as a pillow, Sammy got Kovacs, Haley and Mrs. Brewer regulated phone numbers, while Mr. B kept everything calm after making the initial 911 call. Everything was like clock work. Not bad for a group of people who never were in this sort of situation.

After I started to talking to people, I realized that I was shaking something fierce. I never gave it a thought to process all of the information. As I was told by a few people, he very well could have died. A lot of people in the bleachers had no idea that he was slowly coming back to reality, even complaining about his shirt when he was loaded into the ambulance as Mr. Kovacs rode along. I was a nervous wreck afterwards, just when the gravity of the situation hit me, and more so the importance of the work of the people around me (I either ran or walked - I didn't do shit really). Out of the coaches room comes Haley, looking a little weary. She climbs up the bleachers, lays down, and rests her head on my lap, giving me more comfort than I think she got herself.

To sum it up? It's amazing what capable people can do - even when they think they are doing nothing, but are actually saving lives.

(For the record, the boy's fine. His dad came to pick up his stuff. I was in charge of the pillows, and I just hoped he didn't drool.)