Saturday, April 03, 2004
Shame is a weird thing. Carter's seen me naked a lot, and it's not something I've felt any embarassment over. We're lovers, after all, and I've pretty much come to terms with my boobs and butt and vagina and all that. I even take some pride in them, in that they look good, and them looking good represents, in part, represents a certain amount of willpower on my part - I didn't eat a hamburger for lunch, even when there weren't other girls getting salads around me, or I walked home from the movie theater rather than sitting on my ass waiting for a bus. I inherited a good metabolism from the original Michelle, but that only goes so far, and I've come to realize that being attractive takes effort, even if you start out ahead of the game. I've put on weight since July, but I think it works.
Anyway, I spent the night at Carter's; we'd had a few drinks after the movie, and I wound up going back home with him. He promised me breakfast in bed, and it had been a while since he'd cooked for me. But first, there were other benefits. Not for long, though; because of the whole thing with Mags, I sort of drank a little more than usual while hanging around with Carter and the rest of the folks. Just nervous, I guess, but the alcohol did its job, and I loosened up as the night went on. Knocked me out, though, before Carter was ready for seconds.
I woke up with a headache while Carter was still asleep; not a monster hangover, but enough. Went into the bathroom, brushed my teeth on autopilot, still felt kind of gross, and decided to take a shower. I was still kind of woozy and didn't notice that the shower mat was way up by the drain; I like to stand back more to keep all this hair from getting soaked, but didn't try to readjust the bathmat until the water was already running, so I slipped and fell. I grabbed at the shower curtain on the way down, but the bar it hangs from wasn't actually nailed into the wall (there's like a spring inside so it pushes out), so that crashed to the floor.
I didn't get hurt or anything, but the noise was enough to wake Carter, and he rushed in there, and there I am, on my butt, all wet, one of my legs half-out of the tub and my goodies just out there for anyone rushing into the bathroom to see. I actually shrieked for him to get out and tried to cover myself with the curtain.
I mean, it's weird; it's nothing he hasn't seen before, and I didn't really feel threatened by him at all. Hell, he's got that sleeping-naked habit so it was pretty easy to tell he wasn't going to try and take advantage of me or anything, but, still, it was worse than being embarassed. I actually felt ashamed, but I don't know of what. Maybe just not having control over this body, or something more elemental. I don't know.
Friday, April 02, 2004
Cloak & Dagger
Best not to post anything on April Fool's Day, unless you've got something really clever, which I didn't.
Well, anyway, I guess I had Mags pegged. As busy as she must be, she has a hard time resisting a mystery. I got a call at work, even, that she wondered if she could meet me tonight. I told her I had plans, because the four of us (me, Carter, Kate, and Dennis) were doing the Anita Mui double-feature at the Brattle. She, of course, said she would meet me there, between shows, in the ladies' room. Not one to mess around, is my Maggie.
The day seemed to take forever after that, and I got a little paranoid again. The whole time I'd been on the phone, I'd been worried about whether Maureen or Carter or anyone was walking by, might have overheard me, or even somehow understood the PBX system well enough to listen in on the phone call.
Then came after work, when we took the T into Harvard Square and opted to just run into the Crazy Dough in "The Garage" for pizza. By that point, a little of the paranoia had worn off and the whole exercise was seeming kind of fun, like an adventure. It's odd to say that, but after eight and a half months, you don't quite take being a different person, physically, at least, than what you've always remembered for granted, but it is possible to get used to it. Even scanning the internet for various bits of information becomes routine. You almost have to have a secret within the secret to recognize just how weird and amazing one's life can be.
Anyway, we bopped around the Garage for a while. It borders between being hip and being nerd paradise - it's got a science fiction bookstore and a tattoo parlor; an otaku shop and a Hootenanny clothes store (not yet warm enough for me to be looking at that stuff). It's got a Newbury Comics, which is really a CD store with comics way off in a corner and goofy pop culture stuff all over the place. Something for everyone.
Carter asked if I ever thought of getting a tattoo, and I had to say I never had. He nodded, saying it would have to be just the right one. I've sort of got the feeling he might want to come back sometime. At any rate, we spent nearly an hour window-shopping, which kept us out of the rain.
The first part of the double feature wasn't great - made no sense whatsoever, really. I couldn't wait for it to be over.
As I got set to meet up with Mags, though, I realized I'd forgotten about the "going to the ladies' room in groups" thing. No avoiding it, though, since the rain tonight was the kind that gets absorbed through the skin, and both Kate and I really needed to go. It got kind of awkward, since I think Kate expected us to leave the ladies' room together, too. So, while she was talking washing up, I did the only thing I could think of, said the pizza really wasn't agreeing with me (a lie, since this digestive tract has none of the problems with peppers that my Martin one does), and broke wind.
As an aside, let me just say that after the better part of a year endeavoring not to do that because I figure it's something girls don't do, farting felt fantastic. And it did chase Kate from the restroom.
Made it unpleasant for Mags, unfortunately, but she was in too heightened a state of scientific inquiry to care. "What was in that bottle?"
"That's what I wanted you to find out!"
She said the preliminary analysis was fascinating - that the solute was unusually heavy for a cologne, and that it was organic in nature. But it didn't look like anything she'd ever seen. That's when she remembered me saying it only seemed to affect me, so she thought maybe if tested its interactions with my cells, she'd get a better picture.
She propped her handbag on the sink and started pulling sealed bags out of it, specimen collection containers she'd smuggled out of the lab. I told her I wish she'd told me she was going to do this before I peed out my large Diet Pepsi, but she just laughed and said that would introduce too many impurities for her purposes. Instead, she used little scraper things to collect "squamous cells" from the inside of my cheeks (in the mouth, you perverts). She must have taken seven or eight samples, giggling like a teenager. As cool as it was to see her happy, I can't help but think that whatever mad scientist came up with the whole mind-transfer thing must have felt the same way.
Then we went back to our seats, watched the second movie (which was better, and not just because it had a killer whale interjecting itself into a martial arts fight scene), and went back home. And now I've got something new to lose sleep over.
Wednesday, March 31, 2004
How do you top Monday's entry?
Seriously. I was going to write something when I got home last night, and then I looked at the bottom of the window, where I could see what I wrote the day before, and I was like, crap, all I did since writing that was watch baseball and a movie. I mean, it was a nice day, and I suppose I might have something to say about it, but look at this, going from "today I asked my ex-girlfriend who doesn't know who I really am to see if my boyfriend is somehow using mind-altering chemicals on me" to "today I got up early so that I could watch a baseball game being played in Japan." I mean, for crying out loud...
But that's what the past couple days have been like. I did get up at 5am, watched baseball, and then headed to work after a quick shower. Explained my nervousness all day over not knowing what, if anything, Mags would find by saying I was tired from being up so early. Then, at the end of the day, Kate, Jen and I headed out to the AMC Fenway to see Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind.
I suppose I should have more to say about a movie involving minds being altered, but I really don't. I mean, I did, but Kate and I bored Jen with it last night, and I didn't feel like getting back into it here.
Then today was just laundry day. I finally got around to washing the afghan on the bed; it takes a whole load by itself, and I've been short quarters.
It struck me that this blanket might have sentimental value; it's got a few holes and is kind of scraggly in one corner. Like it should mean something to Michelle.
Monday, March 29, 2004
Waiting and wondering suck
So I get up this morning, ready to go to work, and I notice things are off or out of place. Or, more accuratelly, I think I notice things like that. I can't be sure. Is the stuff in the medicine cabinet out of place? My underwear drawer? Does this thing being missing give Carter any reason to be suspicious?
I was on pins and needles about this all morning. I practically jumped out of my skin when Carter stopped by to say hi. This, I thought, is no way to live, but what to do about it. Then, around eleven, I had an idea. I told Mr. K I had some errands to run and would be taking a long lunch at around 12:30, then when that time came took the green line to Lechmere.
Fortunately, Mags is a creature of habit. Ten months after we broke up, she's still going to the same place for lunch at the same time.
I almost didn't go in. I've talked to her a few times since, well, since July, but it's been months, and a lot of times, it's been sort of playing games, you know? There's been a sort of layer between us. But now...
I took a deep breath, went in, and sat down across the table from her. It was crowded, so she didn't even look up despite my not asking. I plunked the bottle of "cologne" down in front of her, and then she looked up. She didn't recognize me at first, and then she did, vaguely. Asked if she knew me.
Sort of, kind of, I said. I told her that I needed the stuff in the bottle analyzed, and I didn't know any other biochemists. I explained that I couldn't pay much, and in fact I was sort of counting on her curiosity to be enough. She sort of studied it, then opened it and gave it a sniff. For cologne, she said, it doesn't have a very strong scent.
None at all, I said, but if I had done what she'd just done, I'd have to change my underwear.
She looked at me skeptically, giving me the "I think you're some kind of bimbo" look, in fact, but I shrugged, told her I couldn't explain it. She pushed it back at me, saying that was very interesting but even if she didn't think it was a hoax, she could get in trouble having some kind of unknown chemical not developed by her company in her possession, and for all she knew this was some kind of industrial espionage deal. I really didn't want to go back to wondering, so I begged, and in the process called her Mags instead of Margaret or Maggie.
She looked at me really strange. That had been sort of a private nickname between her and me/Martin, and I almost thought she knew something, but she shook it off. "Oh, you're my ex's friend's girlfriend."
"Oh." A pause. "So you probably wouldn't have heard from Marty?"
I shook my head. "Even before I broke up with Kurt," which sounds better than him dumping me, "they weren't exactly keeping in touch. Kurt always said that you were really smart, and... And I kind of need someone I can trust but don't really know." At least as Michelle.
We just sat in silence for a moment, and then she put the tiny half-ounce bottle in her purse. "I can't promise anything. And this is an off-the-books, in my spare time when I've got the lab area to myself deal, understand? I could get in trouble, and if I do, you're going down with me."
I could have kissed her. Instead, we both made comments about me having to get back to work, and so we went.
I must admit, it was a load off my mind. At least until I started writing this, when I thought that maybe the whole "make Marty a girl" thing might have been some sort of twisted revenge for how we broke up, with me not understanding her perspective. Good luck on sleeping, now.
Sunday, March 28, 2004
Maybe I'm just imagining things
I've been all panicky about Carter, but what if there's nothing to it? I spent all of Saturday trying to research whether it's possible that this little bottle contains anything but plain water. It's just immensely frustrating, because, let me tell you, there is a whole metric shitload of stuff on the internet relating to how to get women in bed. Hell, I receive a bunch of it as spam (the ship has sailed on adding length to my penis, for that matter). It was actually a relief to have Jen call at about ten last night, asking if I were planning to hit the Midnight Ass-Kicking at the Coolidge. Sure, I said, why not. Might even be a pleasant walk.
I was kind of surprised to find Carter there. Once he got me into bed, his interest in this sort of thing had dropped, but he said he figured it was his only chance to see me this weekend, and, hey, he'd seen the Snake Deadly Act trailer something like a dozen times coming to these shows with me, so he might as well check it out.
I was kind of tense, and spent the whole time I wasn't watching the movie kind of watching myself - am I acting too suspicious, am I getting horny for no apparent reason, what? Thankfully, I was able to pull Jen aside and get her to not mention anything about the bottle of cologne. If Carter suspected it was missing, he never let on. He was nothing but a perfect gentleman, really. I felt kind of stupid for panicking - here he was going out of his way to surprise me at something I liked, even if kung fu movies aren't really his thing. He even gave me his coat and walked me back to my apartment afterward, since the temperature had dropped a bit in the two hours since I'd arrived at the theater.
I suppose it could be seen as silly to invite him upstairs, but he hadn't been acting strange at all yet, it was past two and thus very difficult to get around Boston unless you had your car with you, and I was feeling kind of frisky in a way that didn't seem connected to external chemical stimulation. And besides, I thought, even though he's got the big bottle of the cologne at home, it's been a week, and he might notice that he's missing the little bottle. So I figured I'd give him a chance to search for it, if he were inclined to do so. It was tricky to find it a good hiding place while I was in the bathroom, but I managed - I figured he wouldn't look inside a still-sealed box of tampons, given how phobic he is about girly things. Just had to be careful peeling the tape so that it could be re-sealed without looking suspicous.
We wound up spending the day together, seeing a movie and stuff. It was funny; we got guest passes for another movie because a movie on another screen was delayed, and even though ours started right on time, they were giving passes out like candy. It'll be fun to use them for a $10.25 show at Boston Common some Friday night.
So, I don't know what the deal is. That bottle is weird, but I'm the only one who seems to notice anything weird. Maybe it's all in my head; maybe I'm feeling guilty for basically liking my life as it is now and seeing conspiracies where there aren't any.