I know that during his campaign Mitt Romney cited Friday Night Lights as his favorite TV show — and when I first read about it, I didn’t say much other than a mild, “Huh.”
It’s hard to attack someone for liking a TV show, let alone a TV show that you passionately like, let alone a TV show that you passionately like that is also liked by someone who happens to be running for president for a political party that opposes most if not all of what you believe in. Anyway, it’s now just hitting me that I am waking up in a world where Barack Obama is still the President of the United States; the realization came to me obscurely at about six in the morning, when I was pouring my usual cup of coffee and settling into my first-thing-in-the-morning routine of checking my e-mail, scanning Facebook, and browsing the news. Suddenly, what happened on Tuesday night finally caught up with me, and for the first time in a long time, I felt a twinge of the hope that I felt in 2008, that I used to possess in abundance in my youth.
Friday Night Lights has been gone for a while and the actors have all moved on — I recently saw Kyle Chandler in that great new Ben Affleck movie Argo and Connie Britton went on to star in American Horror Story and Nashville — but I can’t help continuing to cite this show as inspiration, and if Mitt Romney also found it inspirational, then who am I to judge? Inspiration has never been something to which I’ve easily admitted. It’s very common for people to say this person inspires them and that person is someone they admire or is even outright their idol but I’ve always had a hard time really saying who and what moves me. In my life as a job hunter, during interviews or employment questionnaires, I had sometimes come across the question of who I look up to, and I usually fell back on the answer of Pop and Ma. But does that really count? Yes, we have a good relationship but — and I know this is going to sound insensitive — did I really look up to them? When I make the time to make myself reflect on an answer to that question, I see that Pop is and has always been a hard worker, and so has Ma, with the addition that she has always managed to stay pretty and appear youthful well into her early fifties. (Most folks think she’s still in her thirties, forties at least.) I don’t really know why the question “who do you look up to?” has always been for me one that requires deep reflection to answer. Maybe, like with everything else, I just need to chill out, man. Not everything requires reflection. But I can’t help it. It’s who I am.
So who do I admire? Well, definitely Pop and Ma: for coming to this country to build a new life for themselves, for bringing me into this world and having to put up with my life in addition to each of their own. For everything they’ve done to make it into their fifties (actually, Pop is 61). In terms of flat out, someone-who-is-not-even-remotely-connected-to-me idolatry, I have recently admitted to myself that I am quite infatuated with Hillary Clinton. Oh, I always respected her, but it has only been in the last few weeks that I’ve been able to outright declare, at long last, an idol — and that’s her. Her life of constant and consistent achievement all the way from her high school years to becoming Secretary of State has to me seemed breathtaking enough that I feel like a fool for not supporting her 2008 presidential run, although I do not have buyer’s remorse over President Obama despite sometimes looking to Madame Secretary and thinking, “What if?”
To some degree, I also consider Bill Clinton an idol, and if Chelsea ever ran for office, then I would definitely be in favor of a dynasty not unlike the Kennedy family. But I remain partially convinced that Bill Clinton would not have been much of an idol — or even much of a president — were not Hillary in the picture. Idolatry is a hobby in which one must naturally and conveniently overlook the subject’s flaws. With Hillary, I know that there are many lingering questions, like what exactly happened with poor Vince Foster. It is unfortunate, to put it mildly, that in Hillary’s ascent to influence, someone died; in glossing over the darker components of Hillary’s success, I have had to gloss over this as well as her questionable financial dalliances, with the explanation that is most common to so many of achievement: it took a lot to get there. Anyway, at 30-years old, I am ready to officially declare my first idol: Hillary Rodham Clinton.
I mention my age again, not out of self-pity like I am usually been prone to doing, but because I think it’s strange in the late bloomer sort of way. Although it never much occurred to me when I was young, now it has become important for me to have something to aspire to, to see some person or situation or some TV show and admit to myself: That’s how I want to be. I know that you, my dear imaginary boyfriend, are probably surprised that your real-life counterpart’s name is not first on my list of idols. (You should also know that, since I am a Christian, the notion of idols is controversial and even contrary — though of course I don’t put any man or woman above God. Duh. To suggest that is to be needlessly argumentative, or in the parlance of the moment, to be a troll.) Actually, even as I was gravitating toward what would eventually be a crush on Tim Lincecum — yet not admitting to myself that I had a crush, much less idolized him — I was already collecting data on what would make him someone worthy enough to look up to. For some time, the only answers were that you’re on a baseball team that I like, and that you’re a phenomenal pitcher. It is an unspoken job requirement that athletes have to be role models but it’s not a necessity and certainly not everyone in the public eye demonstrates admirable behavior. (Here, I’m thinking of Miguel Cabrera’s behavior immediately following the World Series, although of course other athletes have acted far worse for other reasons. See also: the fall of Lance Armstrong.) In writing these never-to-be-sents to you, Linc, I have explored many aspects of myself and the meaning of this fixation I have on you. Everything I know about you is secondhand and I am generally aware that I will never get to know you personally. When I first got into baseball in 2009, I only thought of you as a member of the team and some guy who plays baseball really well; it was not until recently that it dawned on me that your star is fiery like so many greats such as Joe Montana, Steve Young, and Barry Bonds. Vaguely I have thought to myself I really know how to pick ‘em — which is to say, I always end up falling for the guy that I can’t possibly ever have. These never-to-be-sents are at once autobiographical and self-indulgent. I write them to try and make sense of the world but to also, in a way, be remembered. Although I look up to the likes of you and Hillary Clinton, I am also greatly aware that I will never be in that company. If you are a star, then I am the chunk of rock that, not only was I demoted from being a planet but… I was never much a planet to begin with.
I guess it’s no surprise that I have resumed writing to you, Linc. This entire year has been one of such great transition for me that even the World Series and re-election of President Obama were not the kinds of celebrations that I had once allowed to eclipse everything else in my life. This past week alone has been monumental in how it has forced me to take a good, long look at my life. I’ll get into that later, in all the never-to-be-sents that will surely be written, but for now I want to say that a little self-indulgence is good: for me, for you, for all. We all need something to get through the day. Like the teenager that I should have outgrown long ago, I need inspiration.
I found out about you guys winning last night when I was running down Van Ness Avenue in my beauty-is-pain dress shoes. (Everyone who sees them is flabbergasted that I can “afford” them. In fact, I can — because they were 15 bucks at Crossroads.) Two middle-aged women were waiting for a crosswalk light to change and I was hurriedly on my way to the Herbst Theatre after I had to high-tail it back to the store because I forgot something important.
“So they won?” said one of the women.
The other nodded and smiled an older woman woman smile that must accompany her when she offers desserts to her grandchildren. “Took them ten innings, too.”
“Yikes,” said the other, who was clearly impressed but with only half the enthusiasm, I suspected, of a fan or a native. And I was right about her not being local. She said: “I’m visiting. In New York, the game has constantly been on everywhere.”
Back at the Herbst, I relayed the news to my boss and we high-fived.
Did you read that, Linc? I HIGH-FIVED WITH MY BOSS. You few, you happy few, you band of brothers better win today, I swear. (Hunter Pence’s Shakespearean pep talk has gone viral. And who high-fives with their boss unless their hometown baseball team’s glory brings them together across the boundaries of employer and subordinate?)
Sadly, while you guys were out winning in Cincinnati, not long after my Carrie Bradshaw moment I was slipping and sliding off a steep learning curve. Ah, I won’t get into the details except to say Lesson Learned. These bigger events still trip me up but I’m hoping that toward the end of the month I’ll be golden for the rest of the season. What happened last night involved me overlooking a crucial step, and I know why it happened: I was too busy being nervous. I’m still not used to certain parts of my job. Luckily, after work I unwound with Spencer, who for a time was a librarian for the city, and Clara, who worked her way through college as a stage manager. If you ever wanted to have an idea of the kind of work that I do, just imagine a cross between a librarian and a stage manager. It’s a strange and lucky thing that I ended up with friends who worked those jobs. I’d have never suspected that their friendship would come in handy for making me feel better one October night in the baseball postseason of 2012.
285.0: If you can smell the ice cream, it’s probably spoiled.
I am a true outlier. While many of my Facebook friends are posting about the Giants, the A’s and — from my friends living in my first hometown — the Nationals, I have spent the last two hours providing unedited commentary about… General Hospital.
Honestly, imagining life before Facebook is fuzzy. It’s as if my natural inclination in life were leading up to Mark Zuckerberg’s invention. I have always enjoyed posting about what’s on my mind. In the 90s, when the internet was a smaller place, there were these things called bulletin boards. You dialed into them. They were super local, meaning that they were usually some neighbor’s pet project. You could post messages and download files — the file sharing of its day, the iTunes. Or you could sign up for an “online service,” which today is known as an ISP or internet service provider, except the internet wasn’t this pervasive thing back then. It was a novelty and everyone was still getting to know it, so an online service like Prodigy or AOL was your gateway to this brave new world. Through all of these, I have balanced being a shy kid with a boisterous nature online. Just ask Selma.
Maybe I’m not an outlier. I’m… something.
Years ago, the first time that I lived in the Sunset district, I lived on the corner of 33rd Avenue and Taraval Street. Spencer and I were exploring the neighborhood and for reasons that are lost in time, we came to a stop at the corner of 34th and Taraval. On the pavement it was written: 34 TH AVE.
In order to read this, I had to become severely hunched over. (I weighed much more back then.)
“What’s wrong?” Spencer asked.
“I’m confused. What is 34… thave?”
Spencer was just as perplexed as I was. “What?”
And then she saw what I was reading.
She began to walk away. “Oh my God, Joe.”
Losing weight did not bring any new enlightenment to my brain. One day, we were snacking at Joe’s Ice Cream in the Outer Richmond, on Geary Street and 19th Avenue. (By this time, I was fully aware that TH and AVE were not one word.) Have you ever been there? It would be so cute if my future husband took me there to propose to me. That sounds really done, huh? As if I ought to be a fan of Nicholas Sparks books — yet I am not. After the movie version of The Notebook, I read the book, which was a big letdown. New York may churn out the books but no one does porn of the heart like Hollywood.
I was picking at my chocolate ice cream, trying to savor it for as long as I could before it turned into soup, and I idly said to Spencer, “Why can’t you smell ice cream?”
“What?” Spencer said. She was perplexed. She had long forgotten the great THAVE disaster of years prior.
“Like, when you eat chocolate candy, you can smell the chocolate, right?” I said.
In my head, I pictured myself eating a box of chocolates. They had not been given to me by you, for this happened before baseball, in 2006, which may as well have been another lifetime. The suitor was mysterious, and anyway, irrelevant. I was imagining myself enjoying the chocolates first by sniffing them and then carefully selecting the first piece that I wanted to lingeringly enjoy.
“Like the smell of how sweet they are, and stuff,” I said, inarticulately, which I blamed on sticking a spoonful of ice cream in my mouth.
“Very well put,” Spencer remarked dryly. “But yeah, I know what you mean.”
“So why can’t we smell the chocolate in ice cream? If you try to smell ice cream, all you ever smell is the cold.”
I had been driving this train wreck of thought while looking into my ice cream cup. When I finally looked up at Spencer, her dark Asian eyes glistened with incredulity.
“Shut up, Joseph,” she said very carefully. “Just… shut up.”
“Coconut ice cream, for example. You can’t smell the coconuts.”
“And yet you continue.”
Customers came and went. The old-fashioned cash register rang and rang its little bell. We were embroiled in a staring match. I was working overtime to suppress my laughter at Spencer’s incredulity.
“Or strawberry —” I ventured, for the last time.
“Because it’s spoiled, Joseph. If you can smell your ice cream, it. Is. Spoiled.”
I dug out the rest of my ice cream. “Geez. So touchy about ice cream odor.”
“Ice cream shouldn’t have odor!”
My eyes widened at her outburst, which had been loud enough that the group sitting at the nearby counter was fleetingly hushed.
“Look what you made me do,” Spencer seethed beneath her breath.
“I can’t take you anywhere.”
She slapped me. Then we went to see a movie.
These bouts of airheadedness are not what you would expect from someone who had mastered HTML coding in high school and, before that, had spent sixth grade navigating the technological maze of the young internet.
The first time that I ever heard about EL James, I thought she was a meteorological phenomenon.
“What is el James?” I said. We were at the downtown Borders in Union Square. A large poster of 50 Shades of Grey hung at the front window display.
I was ignoring the now-iconic silver necktie as well as even the title of the book. That author’s name, which I didn’t even know was a name, was boring into my skull.
“What?” Spencer said.
Poor thing is always getting sideswiped by my idiocy.
I pointed to the poster and exclaimed breathlessly, “El James. Is it el hames? Or el hai-mes?”
Spencer blinked. “You’ve never heard of 50 Shades of Grey.”
I shook my head.
“E.L. James is the author,” she said sharply.
Suddenly it made sense but I was just as quickly stricken about why in the world I thought I had been staring at something in Spanish! I kept this astonishment to myself and let Spencer have fun with my mistake. But when we walked onward, I was privately reflecting on that latest strange mental lapse. How could I be so thick?
Some years later, that Borders closed. The entire chain folded.
One of my coworkers let me take a picture of the front of her journal. She wrote out a title that is more of a self-motivation: I’m in love with cities I’ve never been to and people I’ve never met. This artful scrawl is superimposed over a map of Europe. I giggled and said to her, “I can relate to the part about falling in love with people I’ve never met. As you know from reading my blog.”
Her grin was wide and knowing. “Lincecum.”
Actually, it’s still weird for me to speak out loud about my never-to-be-sents and it isn’t for the reasons of self-consciousness and awkwardness that are justifiably expected. What’s weird about bringing them up in normal conversation is the exposure of the fantasy to reality. In the same way that the ancients dared not to utter the creator’s name, there’s a lost sanctity that happens if I am asked or otherwise provoked into an answer about these letters. I will give the answer but suddenly and violently the letters are diminished, somehow; left to wither upon the vines of hope fluttering defenselessly in the winds of life.
Lately I have been bumping into a lot of things. I’ve never been graceful and many times I have been jokingly called “blonde” because I overlook obvious things. But I feel that these bad oversights have been occurring more often. The simplest explanation is that I think I may need a new prescription for my eyeglasses, and I presume this because even though I haven’t been doing so much, I have been straining my eyes during more instances than I’d like. But I am predicting that whenever I do finally go to the eye doctor — which will not be for a while, since vision is not covered under Healthy San Francisco, and at my job I am still a few months away from private insurance — I will be simply told that if my prescription has changed at all, it hasn’t by much, so that wouldn’t explain why I’m suddenly moving with so much clueless measure. Perhaps it is due to an emergent state of being restive: I coast my way through tasks that are all too routine and thereby not paying attention to ordinary details, like this morning when I was pouring myself a cup of coffee and moved in such a way that I bumped into the refrigerator that I had been pretty sure I was far enough away from. I don’t know where my mind is. I may never know the real explanation beyond that I just need to pay better attention to stuff.
For the next few weeks, it looks as if my weekends are going to be split between Thursdays and Saturdays. By the way, on a related note, did I tell you that the store got a new manager? Thank goodness there was enough time for me to at least get chummy with him, if not to become friends, because the manager who hired me has left to pursue teaching full-time. He was a good boss and a mellow person overall who allowed me a whole day off, as opposed to just a single shift (which would have been good enough for me), as dedicated space for my weekly therapy appointments. His replacement has a different personality but is just as amicable and has allowed me the same courtesy for my therapy, which was recently shifted to Thursdays from another day. And just like with the old boss, I have that whole day off as well — so in the luck of the retail scheduling draw, the other half of my weekend happens to fall on a Saturday.
My old boss was the kind of guy to whom I could open up about why I needed that dedicated time off. We never talked about it much after I initially explained about therapy as the reason why I would regularly need the time off, but he didn’t bat an eyelash either, and whenever he would check up on me about my availability, I detected an undercurrent of sympathy when he’d ask, “So how’s That Thing going?”
Therapy isn’t something I talk about with just anyone, of course, but I also don’t hide that it is a part of my life. It’s useful, Linc, and dare I say that it is holds equal critical value with running as a fitness routine. Therapy doesn’t mean a person is crazy or is admitting to anything other than the fact that the person seeing the therapist is doing so because the person just needs someone to talk to who is in a role and a space that friends, family and even the real world cannot fulfill — and I say “real world” with great conviction, because the space of the therapist is a shelter, Linc. Besides these never-to-be-sents and the Our Ballpark fantasy, therapy is that rarified space in the real world where I have felt most like myself and not only is it where I have unburdened life’s daily burdens, it is where, for years, since at least 2006, I have worked with the same person to process those burdens.
Therapy isn’t about solving a problem or unearthing a singular solution. Therapy is journey yet not necessarily destination. It’s about developing the strength and smarts to move on, and to keep moving on — and it’s a good fit for people like me, whose endless search of self and the world at large would seem like a waste of time to even his closest confidants. In my therapist I have confided intensely private agonies, made complains, even quarreled. And then we worked through them. When I first came to the realization that my most successful long-term adult relationship has been with my therapist, I cracked up with such a mixture of amusement and sorrow that, in fact, I did shed some tears. And then I thought about it some more, and after a very hesitant acceptance of the reality, I was filled with gratitude. I don’t know what I would do without my therapist, Linc. (And before you can make a crack about whether or not I’ve considered hooking up with her, let me remind you that not only have I established myself as a little bit of a prude, but the important reminder that my therapist is, in fact, a her.)
Church yesterday was fantastic. Because of my work schedule, my attendance has been sporadic yet, startlingly, each time I do go, the sermon has some direct correlation with something very specific going on in my life at that moment. Maybe I’m just seeing what I want to see. (Isn’t that what belief is, anyway?) Yesterday’s service was no different. When the pastor stood up and reflected on the reading from Acts, my chest rose with the kind of anxious revelatory fervor that asks, How did you know that?
Of course, to even say that I’m going to church makes me sound incredibly self-righteous, so I want to counter the notion by admitting that I could not resist temptation. I was a bad boy, Linc. I kept checking the ballgame score. (Of course, I now know the outcome, and you probably don’t want to talk about it.) Every free moment that presented itself, like when we took a break between readings, or when it was time to get in line for communion — or (my God, how vehemently sacrilegious) during prayer — so great was the urge to get my phone and refresh the Giants home page that rather than continuing to tell myself that damnit, I’m in church and shouldn’t that matter a hell of a lot more than a ballgame, I did it anyway.
I was reading some article that said you had been feeling crucified by the press and even the fans lately because of your performance this season. When I read that part of the article, seeing the word “crucified” made me think of Crucifictorious, this fake band that was on the Friday Night Lights TV show. I used to have a crush on Jesse Plemons, the guy whose character headlines the band. Jesse Plemons himself is a few years younger than me, and he is even younger than you are, but I did tend to go gaga over him the entire time that I watched that show. I know the guy’s got a goofy face, but his character was really sweet and from what I have seen in his interviews and the handful of other roles I have seen him play, there is a lot of himself in the role of Landry.
Had you mentioned to me in real life that you felt like you were being crucified, I would have interjected with a non sequitor response like “Crucifictorious, even.” And then you would have done a double take and asked, “What?” Depending on what kind of personality you have, you may be irritated at me for abruptly changing the subject, or you may be amused at my random nature.
That’s what I do. I like to diffuse situations. It’s not that I necessarily like to avoid confrontation — even though, in fact, I hate confrontation — but you don’t get to be 30 without learning how to manage not just confrontation, which is so dramatic a word, but on a less dramatic note: simply, conversation. And in conversation, if things become too tense, I like to use humor. Not in an extreme way, the way Chandler Bing did on Friends (wow, I’ve already made two NBC references in one never-to-be-sent), but in a way that I hope makes everyone in the conversation feel a little more relaxed.
Maybe I picked up that habit from Pop and Ma. When I was a kid, they argued a lot. I’d happen to walk into the room during some fight, and because they did not want to argue in front of me, inevitably one of them would break from the argument into a kind of forced laughter. Sometimes Ma would utter a strained chuckle and go, “He’s mad.” And then Pop would chime in with his own hiccuping laughter and say, “No, she’s the one who’s mad!” (It was even funnier — in an awkward way, of course — because their arguments were always in Tagalog, but when they broke for me, they’d speak English.)
Pop and Ma got married young and then began to realize that they didn’t have much in common. If they were ever actually in love, I only know about it from one picture, where they look astonishingly young, and new to the world, their whole lives ahead of them. I can tell they are at a party. Maybe it’s because someone else took the picture, or because Pop is wearing a fitted polo shirt and his slick hair is combed back. Ma is wearing one of those “boyfriend” flannel shirts that were so popular back in the 80s over capris. She used to wear headbands a lot back then, and in that picture she is wearing one. Ma has baby cheeks. When she smiles, she looks like a young teenager, even though in that picture she must have already at least been 21 or so. Pop’s arm is around his beauty pageant queen.
I’ve described all of this from memory, Linc. I don’t know where that picture went. It has been many years since I physically held it in my hands.
Talking to Ma lately has been very exhausting. My whole life, she has always conveyed all of her expectations upon me, whether I was only in the first grade and already expected to get straight A’s on my report card or the furious disappointment that met me when I came dancing to her in high school after I’d gotten accepted into my first choice college. I’m an only child, so there has never been anyone else to whom I could deflect the attention, and in many ways I’ve always felt like I was the salve to some open wound that Pop and Ma each brought into their marriage, into our family. What a terribly enormous expectation to shoulder upon a child. These days, Ma is getting on my case about my new job, insisting that it was a mistake to leave the other one. “I don’t care about my dreams,” she actually told me last night. “I just like that I am making good money.”
But that’s not how I think.
It is going to be very difficult making ends meet. It’s already very difficult now. But I knew what I was getting myself into. I didn’t dive into the dream without first testing the waters.
So, what I’m saying is that it’s not the new financial reality of my new job that’s driving me nuts. That stuff does stress me out — I’m still sore about how dispassionate the food stamps lady was yesterday, even though I know that having that kind of attitude is par for the course of their position — but I can handle it. I can get through it. I’m 30. I’ve gotten through a lot. What I can’t handle is the fact that, at the age that I am, it occurs to me that my own mom doesn’t understand me. I don’t know if Ma has ever bothered trying to understand me. As for Pop, well, I can think of one good example, but I have to reach all the way back to high school.
I came downstairs from my room — because in those days I had a very tight circle of friends that I never much strayed away from, and I was overweight, and I just watched TV or went online most of the time — and I was headed to the kitchen to get some food when Pop presented me with a magazine that was turned to a certain page. The page contained information about a writing contest. Pop said to me with a hopeful smile, “You should enter this, son.”
In those days I was a typically resentful teenager and, on top of that, Pop and I were repairing our relationship from all the years he had to be away in the military. When he gave me that magazine page to look at, I read it quickly enough to immediately realize that the contest wasn’t for me. First of all, the magazine was Redbook and so, naturally, the contest was soliciting entries from women and, specifically, the women’s experience. But despite whatever my resentful mind and hormones were telling me to do, I ignored it all and managed to strain out a thank you to Pop because my heart was soaring with gratitude that he understood me as a writer. I did not tell him that I could not enter the contest. Instead, after thanking him — and I think I even uttered what I hope was a convincing “Cool” — I took the magazine, got my food and retreated to my room.
I know that I keep saying that I’m 30, but the reason why I’m being so repetitive about it is because this is a turning point in my life. It’s not just the number that is making me think (and perhaps overthink). It’s the fact that I have been alive long enough to know that there are things that I want to do for myself, things that I need to do for myself and, yet, maddeningly, I don’t really know who I am. In fact, I was on my run this morning and I had to come to a halt so suddenly that I hunched over and only by clutching onto my knees did I manage to avoid a complete fall. What had happened was one of those bizarre sparks in the brain that fires an existential crisis. For a fleeting but intense burst of several seconds, I was wide awake with the horrifyingly hyperaware realization that I don’t know who I am.
When I have to get the riot act from Ma about how I should do this because she wants to do that, it’s hard. At this age, I have to figure out who I am because if I don’t, I’ll spend my whole life not knowing and therefore not living what I would consider to be a meaningful life. I can’t worry about Ma’s expectations, and yet, if I don’t have her approval, if I have to walk around with her expectations and knowing that my life isn’t good enough for her, it hurts, Linc. There’s nothing I can do to walk it off. I can’t help but take it personally.
The good news is that there are some things that I do know about myself. The bad news is that it is not always easy to reconcile that with Ma or the rest of the world. So, here is what I know:
I am a bookseller. I do not make much money. But I love what I do. In addition to being a bookseller, I am an events coordinator. I mingle with emerging stars and sometimes super stars. I am professional. But I am also very approachable. I love my job.
Because I do not make much money, I have to make adjustments. Living my dream also means that I have to live responsibly to support that dream. I applied for food stamps. I am considering getting a small part time job. I’ve slashed my budget. I am trying to make this dream work.
I need a husband. I am sorry if this goes against feminism and whatever the feminism equivalent is for the gay community. But I can’t do all of this alone — I mean, I can, but at the end of the day I feel so alone. And I’m tired of it. I need a partner. I want someone to tell me that I can do it, and I want someone to whom I can listen in return and to whom I can be a good husband, as well. And I want intimacy: yes, I want sex! Lots and lots of sex with my husband. As Michelle Pfeiffer’s character said in Up Close and Personal when she wanted to get married to Robert Redford’s character, “I want to know that you’re legally required to be here in the morning.” And I want to make you so exhausted in the morning that you will take after Ryan Gosling in The Notebook and demand nourishment and accuse me of sending you to an early grave.
I want kids. I want two kids and I’m going to raise them to be partners. I want them to be best friends but I’m going to try and hold off on placing my expectations upon them. They might not always like each other but they will have each other’s back. When they reach adulthood, I will not tolerate either of them saying any variant of “We haven’t spoken in years.”
I’m a nomad with a modestly packed backpack. Those are my tools through the journey of life. They are the keepsakes that remind me of what I have left behind, and the hope of reaching a fine destination.
Speaking of journeys, you’ve got a start coming up in a few minutes. Duck the Fodgers!
Written in the format of unsent (“never-to-be-sent”) letters to San Francisco Giants starting pitcher Tim Lincecum, Baseball 2.0 discusses baseball, the world and life — though baseball could be considered to be all of the above. In particular, there is special emphasis on baseball and life through the author’s background as a gay Filipino.
All that introspection is time consuming, so there’s not a lot of opportunity to hope that Tim (variously and vaguely referred to as either “the Avatar” or “Linc,” not really because of movies or video games but due to the author’s personal superstition/belief about the power of names) actually writes back — which he likely wouldn’t, anyway.