The kind you’re born with, the kind you choose, the kind that teach Catholic school
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She liked classic rock and country, while I favored singer-songwriters with whispery voices and acoustic guitars. She teased me that this was typical of kids whose older parents had made them listen to Bob Dylan instead of Michael Jackson. In fact, my parents had usually listened to silence, but I liked her theory anyway, because it suggested that my personality was not my fault.
When I was young, I lived for what I thought of as “lyrical moments,” when the details of life were suddenly heightened and approached the transcendent. . . . Of course, if you live long enough, you start thinking more and more not about the lyrical but rather about time. . . . I am living to stay alive.
A man with the right scruffed-up beard and breadth of chest swaggered into the S and M dungeon that was my place of business, and twenty minutes and one grand later had my chin — still soft with the downy fluff of teen-girl skin — held steady in one paw while the other one flew at my face so hard and fast that I ceased to exist as the same collection of matter I had been the previous instant.
I’d thought dating would make me feel less grief, but it was the opposite. I decided to delete my Match.com account and learn to masturbate. I had enough sadness in my own life.
Falling for a firefighter, staying single, trusting someone with your cat
Under the Milky Way, after the fireworks, out of the closet
I used to feel like an imposter because of my breasts, because even before I got pregnant they were pretty spectacular, and it’s made me wonder if I’ve ever actually earned anything, or if all the jobs and awards and opportunities I’ve gotten, really, have just been handed to me because of fat deposits that would be disgusting if they were placed a few inches lower, on my belly.
My sister Nell and I were standing on the banks of the Duvallis River, waiting for a man to float down it.
It’s 7 AM, and I’ve finally come back to my car. I force myself to check my phone and assess the damage: four missed calls — three from Rebecca, my girlfriend, and one from my father. I’m parked at a Pavilions grocery store on Melrose in Hollywood, a few blocks from the gay bathhouse where I’ve been since yesterday evening.