Thursday, March 29, 2018

My Life in 1988 (Part 2)

Teenage angst continues....

Heather is in Florida. Pipila wrote Marni a note. It was pretty long. (4/20/88).  Pipila was one of the fake ghosts, and Marni was the girl who was not supposed to be friends with me because I believed I was friends with a bunch of dead people.

I wonder how Marni felt when I gave her the note.Was there a tiny part of her that believed any of it was true? Did she think I was totally insane?  Oh! And did she perhaps believe that I didn't believe? Maybe she thought I was trying to trick her?

I have no idea.

Marni says I'm her best friend. She has started a writing friendship with Pipila. (4/21/88). Was Marni keeping her friendship with me (and Pipila) a secret from her mom?

Jennifer and I went to Six Flags. We met 5 guys and 2 girls. (5/2/88). You know when I've thought back to the ouija board drama, I have had this idea that I gave up all my living friends for characters that exist only in my sister's imagination.  But it seems I managed to keep up a social life with real people.

Melissa is the biggest pain. I wish I didn't need Melissa to talk to Heather and Alex. She is a spoiled brat. She has a personality of the girl on the Bad Seed exactly. (5/10/88).  Well...uh...minus the murderers, at least. My sister was probably a brat as most younger sisters are. I don't think she's a psychopath!

The ouija board never worked. I got Melissa to confess she moved it. Well, I'm upset about that but not anymore. (5/14/88). Well...I got over THAT fast.

No, I didn't.

My diary is lying.

I suppressed a lot of very negative emotions.

I think I felt pressured to get over the whole thing, and so I pretended I was fine. Or really...I forced myself to be okay.

I find it sad, but not surprising, that I didn't write more about what had happened.

What I remember without the diary's help:

A) Getting suspicious when the "ghosts" misspelled the word "nightgown".

B) Testing my sister

C) My sister failing the test

D) Getting very angry and yelling at my sister

E) My mom coming upstairs and yelling at me. She yelled something like, What did you do to her?
She assumed I was the one who had done something wrong.It was horrible because not only did I suddenly completely lose all these friends I imagined I had and feel like a complete fool for being tricked by my ten-year-old sister; but also my mom acted like I was some kind of monster.

F) My parents offering me very little comfort. Or none. And my mom actually acted impressed and proud of Melissa for being so imaginative.

G) I REALLY wanted to die that night. I wasn't courageous enough for suicide, but the pain was strong enough that I wanted to vanish. I vaguely remember, in desperation, grabbing a bottle of pills. But that's as far as I went...suicide-wise.

Looking back thirty years later, I can be also be a bit impressed with Melissa's creativity. It's too bad she didn't go on to do more with that. BUT for my mom to say that to me in the midst of my emotional trauma?

I have 100% forgiven Melissa for her hoax. I have not forgiven my mom for the way she treated me in the aftermath.

Melissa was a little nicer yesterday. A miracle! (5/17/88).  I'm kind of surprised we managed to get along at all in those days.

I'm reading through May entries. It kind of freaks me out that I sound so fine about everything.

I know I wasn't.

I think in some cases I can believe my diary more than my memories. THIS is not one of those cases.

Marni is so selfish. All she cares about is herself. (5/24/88).  This is one of many negative statements I provide about Marni in the May entries. I have to wonder if the ouija board aftermath affected our friendship. Maybe she had actually believed. Maybe I wasn't the only one hurt by my sister's hoax.

Rashmi told me Marni said that Marni's mom said that she didn't like me as soon as she first met me. (5/25/88).  I wonder what she had against me. I thought it was the ghost thing, but apparently there was something else.

And who is Rashmi?  I saw her name mentioned earlier in the diary, but didn't really take notice of it.  I'm guessing the name is Muslim or Israeli? Sometimes I can't tell the difference.

I went and backtracked to the earlier mention of Rashmi. She's on a list of people I dislike.

There's also a list of people I DO like. Both my parents are on that. So while I have anger towards my mom regarding the ouija board aftermath now, I guess I was cool with her back then.  And...I mean it's not like I don't love my mom. We get along fairly okay. When I say I don't forgive someone, it doesn't mean I'm not speaking to them or that I don't have a loving/fun relationship with them. It just means that along with the love, there are also some negative feelings.

My goal in relationship drama is not to forgive and forget. It's to love and enjoy my relationships despite the negative aspects.

Oh! I should have read ahead with the May 25 entry. I talk more about Marni's mom. 

Last summer at the CF foundation, Marni told me her mom didn't like how I worked with diseases and death.

She didn't like that I did volunteer work. Fascinating.

Is it true?

I'm not sure.

What I wonder is why Marni would tell me all this? Was she venting to me? Was she using her mother as an excuse to insult me?

And did I ever give her the same treatment?  Did I name the things that my parents didn't like about her?  I'm not sure if they ever said anything against her. But maybe they did?

I am writing a story about a girl named Kristen with Cystic Fibrosis. It will be long. (5/27/88). That ended up being my first novel.

There's something very special about Stewart and Missy. They have a real braveness to them. They are so brave. Except Stewart seems a bit nicer, I have to say. (6/3/88). Stewart and Missy both had (have?) CF.  Major inspiration porn there!  I have grown against this attitude, and I cringe when I see it in others.

Having a disease or disability is one of the possible roads that MAY lead to courage, but there's no guarantee.

About eleven years after this post, I wrote the novel Thirty Cats, which I think shows that I had slowly began to grow away from the  idealization of the chronically ill and disabled.

That book was about Neurofibromatosis instead of Cystic Fibrosis. Gabrielle, the protagonist, has the disorder and has no extraordinary courage or wonderfulness. She's just a typical teenager who happens to have NF, and she's hates having it.  Her father, on the other hand, has that certain bravery we tend to see in stories about the disabled or chronically ill. Gabrielle's brother admires their father and is obsessed with the disorder.  I think I somewhat modeled the brother after my high school self. Though, as my diary, displays, I had a huge amount of sympathy for CF families and a huge longing for a cure; I think I was also fascinated by the disease in a scientific kind of way.  A part of me hears about someone's illness and thinks, Oh no. That's so awful. I'm so sorry she's going through that.  Another part of me is thinking, Wow! Fascinating! I need to learn all about this!

I had so much fun at the sports challenge thing. At 1:00 I went over to help with the CF kids. I got embarrassed because I was supposed to gather them at but they were too fast for me.  (6/4/88).

Those kids were poster children for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. And as I've come to learn, poster children are a kind of inspiration porn.

Here's a piece written by a woman, Kayla Whaley, who was once a poster child for Muscular Dystrophy. She says the use of poster children is similar to inspirational porn. From what she says, it seems inspirational porn involves fictional characters.  I didn't know that. I thought it could be real or pretend people.

But anyway....Whaley says,

As a poster child, your worth is in your disability. You’re there to inspire the able-bodied audience. To inspire pity, sadness, fear, guilt, etc. You’re the poor, poor cripple whose life would be that much more horrible without their monetary contribution.

What I wonder, is is there a way to effectively raise awareness and money for organizations without poster children or something similar?  I think it's easier for most of us to care when we have a story to care about rather than just statistics.

I just read the ending of the article and Whaley has a solution. She says,
I think the answer here is simple, as it tends to be. It all boils down to treating with children with disabilities as whole people with dignity, agency, faults, etc.

Yeah. I think that's the key.  If we're going to humanize stories by adding characters, whether fictional or real, we need to make them relatable rather than inspirational.  

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

My Life in 1988 (Part 1)

Here are more excerpts from my teenage diary.  In these bits, I was fifteen and in 9th grade.

No one from the cruise wrote back yet. I'm going to be in a Cinderella play. (1/12/88). I remember going to rehearsals for Cinderella, but I don't think I made it to the actual performance. I think I dropped out. 1988 was one of my worst years, and thirty years later, I still have a negative feeling when I think of Cinderella. Even though...the play itself wasn't the cause of my problems.  It's just a negative association.  

There is a lot of confusion between Carrie, Jennifer, and Marni. They are always mad at someone. When I'm with Carrie, she talks about how she is mad at Marni or Jennifer. When I'm with Jennifer, she talks about the problems she's having with Carrie and Marni. And Marni is always worried about losing her only friends. (1/20/87). Seems to me that this is kind of typical of friends groups...and families.  I wonder if I realized that, when I was not around, they probably talked about me.

A lot of things have happened in my life and I've decided I want to die and become an angel. I've been considering this for 2 weeks since Heather died and tonight I'm sure I want to be one.  (2/17/88). Well, I had some lofty goals! The Heather I'm referring to is the actress Heather O'Rourke. She died in the beginning of February. I was very upset about her death.  It was a double whammy—because A) I was grieving B) I felt like a freak for grieving over someone I didn't personally know. Decades later I'd learn that Heather O'Rourke had other enthusiastic fans and I'm sure some of them also felt grief.  I think grieving over a celebrity is not as crazy and rare as I once believed.  That's the nice thing about the Internet. It's so much easier for people to learn that they're not alone. Back in the bygone days, it was very easy to believe that you were very alone in the world.

I'm trying to like everyone but it's hard. I think I'll just stick to just not hating anyone. (2/19/88). I don't think I stuck to that very long!  This liking everyone was part of my plan to become an angel.  It seems I was more into bettering myself than planning any kind of suicide. I have to say, I'm kind of impressed with that mindset.  

It's hard to believe but Alex and Heather have finally talked to me with the ouija board. (2/23/88). It was hard to believe, and it wasn't true. The whole thing was a hoax.

My sister Melissa was the captain of the hoax. I was about to say it was a trick, but I think it was more of a game/activity that went too far. My guess is my sister moved the triangle thing to see if she could trick me—get away with it.  And when she did and saw how excited I was, she probably couldn't figure out how to end the whole thing.  

I think it went on for months.

Yesterday Carry came with me to school. I didn't know this until last night and she told me that she had to go to the bathroom during science and when she returned I was gone. It made me laugh (3/1/88). Carry was one of the ghosts invented by my sister. I'm wondering if I asked Carrie any questions to verify if she was really there. If I didn't, was it because subconsciously I worried that I'd learn it was all not real?  I'm kind of doubting it. From what I'm reading in the diary, it seems my belief was very strong.

I got in a fight with Carry yesterday. She spelled a word wrong and I couldn't understand it. She got all mad and spazed out.  (3/2/88). It was a misspelled word that eventually revealed that the whole thing was a hoax. I still remember the word—nightgown.  I think what happened is it was misspelled and misspelled the way my sister typically misspelled it.

I learned something interesting last night. Everything on earth has a soul. Food books, everything, and that's what they use in heaven. (3/3/88). I like my sister's idea there.  I think actually there are religions that believe this.  I vaguely remember reading it somewhere. it animism?  

Googled. Yes! It is.  

It's very cool that my sister kind of channelled that idea. I wonder if she had heard about it somewhere?

One of the sad things about all these entries is I rarely mention Melissa in any of them. It's almost like I was alone with the ghosts. She was just an instrument to help me communicate.

Throughout the years, there is one thing that has periodically come into my head. What if it was NOT a hoax, and Melissa pretended it was a hoax because she was so damn sick of the whole thing?  A part of me (small part) has been prepared for some kind of confession.  

I saw the Lost Boys. I love that movie. It is so cool. (someday in March, but not dated for some reason) When I began copying stuff from my old diaries, I said I had four favorite celebrities—Heather O'Rourke, Bridgette Anderson, David Oliver, and Marc Singer.  As I've been reading, I've learned that I was totally wrong.  I'm saying that now, because Kiefer Sutherland, from Lost Boys, was one of them. I also saw a LOT of entries about Heather Langenkamp. I'm sure there were others as well.

Marni's mom won't let Marni be friends with me because she says I'm sick. (3/24/88). That sounds harsh, but from what I've been reading, Marni had her own issues.  I think her mom probably imagined things would be better for Marni if she wasn't friends with a delusional girl.

Was I delusional?  I mean I was...yeah. In some ways. But do beliefs count as delusions when we're being tricked by someone else?  

And where do we draw the line between delusion and socially acceptable religious belief?  If Marni's mom was not okay with me talking to the dead, would she also be not be okay with someone who believed in Jesus?  If she was Christian, I'm sure she'd see a huge difference between the two.  Marni's family was Jewish, though.  I think many Jews are more into the cultural aspects of it and not the spiritual.  If this was the case for Marni's family, any strong beliefs in the supernatural might have been seen as unhealthy/disturbing.

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

My Life in 1987 (Part 4)

I was thinking about something....

I'm being pretty damn selective about what I take from my 1980's diaries and put in my 2018 blog.

One thing, I realized, that I'm seriously neglecting is my relationship with my younger sister Melissa. I wrote about her a lot in the diaries, but I think I just took it for granted when reading the entries.  I think I've been ignoring the good times and, for the most part, taking notice of her only when I talk about our fights.

The truth is, Melissa and I spent so much time together. We watched movies together. We played acting games together. We played in the pool together. She was often my partner in my CF volunteer adventures.

I'm going to try to record more of this stuff.

Melissa and I got a frog. It's sick because it was in our "shocked" pool. (8/22/87).  Poor frog. This happened to me a few months ago. I rescued a frog from the pool, but had doubts he'd be okay.

I'm in love with Jon. (8/31/87)  WHO is Jon?  Is it the same Jon I mentioned in an earlier entry??

In English we had to stand up and say something about ourselves. I feel ignored because the teacher seemed totally uninterested about me. I miss middle school. (9/1/87). I've always been very sensitive about being ignored or people acting like they're not interested in what I'm saying. To be fair, though. I don't think it's completely self-centered, because I tend to notice other people being ignored as well.

I met a girl on the bus today. Her name is Jennifer. She's in tenth grade.  (9/2/87). Jennifer and I ended up becoming friends. She's pretty much the only person in high school I've seen since high school ended...though only three times.  And sadly, we're not in touch anymore.

I didn't get along with Dad today. He is always saying sick jokes and he has become so arrogant. Sometimes I laugh at his jokes not because they're funny but because I'm nervous. Tonight I started shaking and sweating. Then I felt like Heather was there in the room with me, Marni, and Melissa. (9/4/87). I'm more interested in the physical symptoms than the delusions. Or who knows. Maybe I WAS being haunted by a still-living horror movie actress.

Lately I've been thinking that I might have epilepsy. One theory is, I've recently acquired it for some strange reason.  But I think adult-onset epilepsy is fairly rare. My other theory is that I've had it all my life, and just never considered what I was experiencing were seizures. I've had so many weird symptoms—both physical and psychological. Of course, one could argue that my physical symptoms are caused by the psychological. But often neurological problems cause psychological problems. It's all connected in a back and forth kind of way.

Phone conversation between Marni and me:

Marni: I have to go to jazz today.

Dina: Oh well you'll love drama. It is so fun.

Marni: Well, I just don't want to go.

Dina: Well it's so fun and if you want to be a good actress you need to take it.

Marni-Well, I'll take it somewhere else.

Dina:What's the difference where you'll take it? 

Marni: Nothing. I just don't want to take drama.

Dina: Well if you want to be good at acting, you have to do so.

Holy shit!  I'm totally on Marni's side here. Did I not realize how bitchy and controlling I was being?  And it gets even worse. I start insulting her acting. I tell her we'll be the worst in the class. Marni argues against that. She WON'T be the worse, because she puts a lot of feeling into her acting. I tell her it's not true.

However...then I write: I always compliment Marni but she never does it to me. (9/7/87).  I believe that. I can kind of remember Marni being that way.  I'm thinking maybe my whole conversation wasn't about getting Marnie to take acting classes but a passive-aggressive way to get back at her for not complimenting me as much as I complimented her.

I have a strange feeling. I feel like something big is going to happen. It involves the supernatural. (9/13/87). See...this is one of those things I feel MIGHT be seizure related.

And I don't want to discount the possibility that I was having a supernatural experience. I believe in all that. I'm open-minded. But I'm also skeptical. I like looking at things with multiple viewpoints.  I like considering all the possibilities.

But I have had random feelings—sometimes positive and sometimes negative. I often took them to be psychic but since usually nothing happened to validate my psychic feelings....I'm leaning towards the seizure explanation.

Example: One day I was thinking about the forest near the Beach Club Resort at Disney World, and I suddenly had this horrible feeling of dread.  It made me extra nervous about going to Disney World. I worried I was having a premonition.  But...nothing bad yet has happened to us at the Beach Club Resort. So....

My guess is that my brain goes all haywire at random times. Then I connect it to whatever I was thinking about at the time. So if I was thinking about hot dogs, I might have feared that someone I love was soon going to choke on one.

Sometimes I wish I either liked a guy or I was obsessed with someone like last year. I guess it's better that I'm not, though because last year I was always depressed. (9/30/87).  Yeah. Unrequited love usually brings more pain than joy. But still. In a way, it brings excitement to life.

Marni is doing great. She has made a lot of new friends and is not the geek anymore. The only thing is, she is ignoring me now. It's like she used me in 7th and 8th grade, because no one liked her. It's like she didn't like me for me but for the fact that I was the only friend she had.  (9/30/87).  A part of me is happy for Marni—that she escaped me. Though actually I think we go back to being friends again. And I don't want to put all the blame on myself. Yeah. I was passive-aggressive. But I think the thing is, Marni and I had tension because I was too self-deprecating and Marni was too arrogant. I'm sure I fished for compliments and Marni didn't oblige. And then, I think she used her self-confidence as a sort of shield, and that probably annoyed the hell out of me.

It's like when I dreamed about the ouija board. I woke up and remembered it and was very scared. Then I fell back asleep, and in the morning, I knew I had dreamed about a ouija board but I wasn't sure what about.  (10/6/87). I'm leaning away from epilepsy and more towards the supernatural. BECAUSE a ouija board would play a pretty big part in my teenage years.  But the skeptical side of me is suggesting it could easily have been just a coincidence.

Amy is reading my play and is liking it so far. I didn't expect her too. Keith read Nightmare 4. He liked it. And Wayne and Jennifer read Childless Town. They liked it. (10/13/87). I spent a lot of time writing during my teen years, and often asked classmates to read what I wrote. I was lucky in that there were a few people who actually seemed eager to read what I had written. I'm not sure if that was the case, though, with Keith, Amy, Wayne, and Jennifer.

I went to drama today. We did a scene from A Childless Town with Michelle and her mommy when Michelle finishes walking the dog. (10/15/87).  I do have vague memories of my drama class using my writing. It was probably an act of charity from the teacher. I was probably one of the worst actors in the class; so to restore my self-esteem, she probably allowed my writing to be used. And anyway, if a teenager brings their writing to class, how do you say, No we're not going to be using that?

I'm not trying to say I was a bad writer. I was probably fairly good...for my age. I'm just saying that the use of my writing in class isn't proof that I had exceptional talent.

I just watched Highway to Heaven with my grandma. It was a good one. It was about Michael Landon turning into a werewolf. Yesterday we got into a big fight. Melissa and I against Grandma Bea and Grandpa Ed. But now things have cooled down and it is kind of better because now they treat us like humans not angels.  (10/28/87).  I don't remember them ever treating us like angels.  I'm wondering if that was a mistake. Maybe I used the wrong word, because I had Highway to Heaven on my mind.

Last night I heard a baby crying. It was 5:00 in the morning. I got up, went to the bathroom, and everything. Then the next day I asked if everyone else had heard the baby and no one did. They say I dreamed it.  (11/3/87). Hallucination or haunted house?  I could go either way.  Or maybe there was a  baby outside, and the rest of my family slept through it.

I'm not doing anything for my birthday. I wanted to see Cats, but we couldn't, because Mom didn't want to see it twice. All I want to do is see one movie with my family but we can't because it's PG-13 and Melissa is ten. For some strange reason, though, Melissa is allowed to watch R-rated movies.  My mom says see it with a friend. Or Dad's to tired. Everything depends on what dad wants and they have no faith in me. (11/19/87).  If this was the beginning of a teen sitcom, in the end I'd be taken to see the play, the movie, AND I'd get a big surprise party.  But I don't think that actually happened. I wonder what movie I wanted to see....

And yeah, the thing about R-rated movies is so true. My ten-year-old sister was watching all sorts of horror movies with me at that age, and probably when she was younger as well. I don't remember my parents having any restraints on what we watched. So they probably should have come up with a more logical excuse in terms of why they couldn't take me to see what I wanted on my birthday.

I am on a boat. The boat is rocking and I can't understand the language spoken. Everyone speaks Spanish. (12/19/87).  This was our first family cruise. The first night we were shocked—shocked by the smallness of the cabins and shocked by how much the boat was rocking. I remember wanting to get out of there, BUT I think we were acting more comical about it than tragic. And in the end, we loved it. We became fans of cruises and went on more in the upcoming years.

This first cruise was one of my favorites because the ship was small. It felt close-knit. It kind of felt like camp-at-sea.  I'm not a big fan of the megaships—the ones where you rarely see the same people twice. I think it takes away some of the fun.

I can not stop crying! I wonder if the rest of the cruise people are suffering as I am.  Oh how unfair it is to become close to people, then lose them. It hurts to know I will never see them again. I feel like dying. I don't want to sleep because I'll dream I'm still on the boat and I'll be disappointed when I wake up. (12/26/87). I love the drama there.  It WAS hard, though...back in the day before social media. My nieces go on cruises now, and actually get to easily keep up with their new friends.  Of course we had snail mail back back then. And phones. I think I did some writing and calling, but it's hard to keep up with that.  Then again, I could easily still be close to long-distance friends now, and I'm not. We could email frequently, text, etc. But we don't. We rarely talk at all outside of occasionally commenting or liking each other's Instagram photos. So then it's kind of depressing because you know it's not a lack of convenience. It's about being a low priority to each other.

Saturday, March 24, 2018

My Life in 1987 (Part 3)

More excerpts from my teenage diary.  The ones on this post are from the summer before I started high school.

I haven't mentioned this yet, but in this diary, almost every entry contains a short summary about what's been happening on the soap opera Another World.  I guess I was really into it at the time. The other time I remember being really into the show was the years leading up to our wedding. I guess it would be around 1997-1999. It was the years before the show ended.

Melissa ripped my nightgown. I was mad because Mom wasn't. (6/16/87)  That was an ongoing storyline in my relationship with my mom and sister.  I felt my mom was too often on my sister's side.

I called Violet today. She is nice, but boring on the telephone. (6/18/87) This isn't the first time Violet has been mentioned.  I don't remember her....

I am excited about the garage sale. I think we will make $50 because we don't have much stuff and it is all very cheap. I wish we could get at least a hundred. (6/21/87) This was our way of trying to raise money for CF. I think it did fairly well, but I'm not sure.  I'm sure my younger self will eventually tell me. 

I went to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation today. There was a volunteer there named Nancy. At first I disliked her. She talked to much, but then I began to like her. (6/23/87). I do remember Nancy. She was quite talkative, which, as a shy person, was hard for me to deal with. I think when you're shy, talkative people make you feel even more shy. Or at least it was that way with me. But still...I remember Nancy being very kind and loving, like a surrogate aunt or grandmother.  She made me feel like I was worth something.  

I got in a big fight with Grandma and Grandpa at the Chinese restaurant. Grandpa says I pick on Grandma too much, but Grandma said some horrid things, like Since I had to listen to you sing yesterday, let's do what I want to do. (6/25/87). Sorry defenders of the elderly, but I'm totally on the side of my teenage-self there.  Reading this is giving me a bout of self-pity. I have had such shitty support in terms of my singing. And I'm going to stop questioning whether I'm a good singer or not. I'm going to trust my own ears. And I'm going to trust the people who have given me high praises. But it's hard to have that faith when your grandmother says something like that to you; your husband doesn't mention or compliment your singing—tells you not to quit your day job, etc. Your brother-in-law also says the day job thing; your father infers that you are embarrassing yourself with karaoke, etc.  

To be fair to my grandmother, though. I was shy back then, and when I'm feeling shy, I think my singing falls from excellent to slightly below average. On the other hand, I think I was able to sing with confidence in front of certain people. I think my younger sister and Marni were two of those people, and I'm guessing maybe my grandmother was included.  Either way, why would listening to your grandchild sing be a chore?  I think it's fun listening to people sing, whether they sing good or bad.   

Our garage sale was pretty sucky. The results were as follows. Dawn raised $24 which she gave 12.00 to CF. We got 140 which we gave about 80 to CF. (6/27/87).  I didn't remember that we kept some of the money. I was less charitable than I thought!

Melissa and I went out and spent all are money. Just kidding. We didn't even spend half. I bought candy, 3.99 for a pound. I bought silver heart earrings at Spencers (6/28/87). I have these old silver heart earrings I still wear.  I wonder if these are the earrings! One of my trademarks is wearing very old clothes, shoes, earrings, etc.

I have a funny feeling that I'm going to meet Matthew Broderick. (6/29/87). Was that some kind of psychic prediction? hasn't happened yet.  What happened to Matthew Broderick?  I never see him on Twitter. And if a a celebrity isn't on Twitter, it kind of feels like they don't exist.

We saw Ferris Bueller's Day Off. Matthew Broderick is cute. (6/30/87). Funny. I've told people (probably just Tim, actually) that I've never seen that movie. Oops. 

I saw Shannon from drama class here. She is so good at acting. She is the best in the class. I am the worst. (7/4/87). Was that my low self-esteem talking, or was I really the worst?  It's probably a little of both.  

While we got ready, I watched War Games. I like Matthew Broderick. He is nice, but he gets mad easy. (7/15/87) WTF. I would think I would have understood that actors are not their characters. Or maybe I read something in a magazine?

No one likes me anymore. I mean no one at all. I'm so different from everyone else. I wish Freddy would come and kill me. Except first I wanna see Poltergeist III and Nightmare IV.  (7/7/87). I laughed when I read that but then wondered if I was using humor to hide deep pain. I think I tend to do that. It's like, Hey...I'm kind of close to having a nervous breakdown. But look. I'm not really mentally ill or anything, because I can still make jokes. 

 Melissa says I'm ugly, and she means it too. Mom likes me but she likes Melissa much more. Now Beau and Toby hate me. Erin just uses me so she can have someone to talk to. I wanna die and come back a good person. Mom and Dawn say I'm selfish. I don't understand. (7/7/87) I have remembered my father calling me selfish. I didn't remember my sister and mother doing so. I wonder what I had done to make them say that.

Today was pretty depressing. I felt like committing suicide, but suicide is a sin so I would never do it. (7/8/87). I really wish I was more forthcoming about what was happening.  

Melissa and I worked on the newspaper thing. Then this afternoon we went to turn my film in. We had taken pictures of each other dressed in different clothes. (7/18/87). I think I remember these photos.

I wrote Grandma's life story. She really liked it. She wants to move to California. (7/19/87). Away from her grandchildren and daughter.  Well.....

Shit. I'm getting angry at a woman who's been dead for almost twenty years. 

I'm not going to quote anything really, but I just wanted to mention again that a large portion of my diary is made up of soap opera plot descriptions. AND we watched Nightmare on Elm Street...a lot. It seems like we watched it every day.

Melissa was crying today because Toby (the dog) was eating a daddy long leg. Sometimes she can be real obnoxious like when she pokes me in the stomach and says "Tom Dixon". Mom was mean today. She kept on ignoring me and giving me dirty looks. (7/31/87). Strange. I feel like I can almost remember the Tom Dixon thing. I wonder where my sister got that name.

I bought a monkey stuffed animal. It is so cute. It is a puppet and looks real. (8/8/87)  Some years ago, we watched videos of my sister and me playing with those monkey puppets (apes, actually). My father asks the name of my puppet and I say "Fred J.". We were quite surprised when we saw this video, because my sister ended up marrying a Fred J.  And I actually gave the right full name not just the initial. It's just I'm not sure it's a good idea to give the full name of my brother-in-law here.

If I ever have a bad dream, Heather comes and helps me out. (8/18/87). I was referring to Heather Langenkamp. I had a pretty strong crush on her—though it was probably more of a wish-you-were-my-best-friend-crush than a romantic/sexual crush.  This wasn't the only time I received the love and support I desire need via celebrities in my dreams. I wonder if this is common or if it's more of a thing that happens to people with self-esteem issues. Actually, I think I might have read that somewhere.  I guess, on the bright side, I don't think I've had many wonderful dream encounters with celebrities lately. So maybe that's a sign that my self-esteem is doing well.     

Well...I'm looking for the info about celebrity dreams and low self-esteem. I'm not finding it. So maybe I imagined that. Or dreamed it.  

Actually I think maybe it wasn't labeled as low self-esteem. It was more wish fulfillment. So a lonely person might find love and friendship in their dreams if they're not feeling it in their real life.  

I would guess that most celebrity dreams are actually random.  But if there's a lot of love coming from the celebrity, maybe wish fulfillment.  On the other hand, it could be about having strong self-confidence. In some instances, it could be about believing we are awesome enough to attract a celebrity's attention and adoration.  I guess the psychology of the dreams could be determined by what's happening in the person's daily life.  In the summer of 1987, I seemed somewhat down on my self and dissatisfied with my relationships. So I would guess the Heather Langenkamp dreams were trying to make up for what I was lacking.

BUT...Fuck all that psychology shit.  It's so much more fun to believe celebrities are truly visiting us in our dreams (Freddy Krueger style), because we're simply so awesome and they want to spend time with us.  

Friday, March 23, 2018

My Life in 1987 (Part 2)

I got myself a new diary in 1987.

I think that one is more...grandmotherly. I personally prefer the earlier Teddy Bear one.

Han wasn't too nice today...This is the first time Han has been a jerk since like November. I think he was in a bad mood.  (5/12/87). Uh oh. I wonder what was up with Han. You know I can't remember Han being around in high school. I'm guessing he left. Or I totally lost interest in him.

Oh! I just saw that the entry lasts for two pages. I think I became more wordy as I aged.  I talk more about the Han conversation: This is what Han said. I asked how many laps he was going to do. He says I don't know. Than I say are you the fastest runner and he says I don't know. Then I say is that all you can say.

I was probably one of the slowest runners in the class. It's funny that I had a crush on the maybe-fastest. I'm wondering about Han? Was he annoyed by me? Embarrassed by my sort-of-compliments? Upset about something else?

I was so jealous because Han was talking to this other girl. I get jealous easy. Half of me hates him. Half of me likes him. Half of me says he likes her (I don't even know her name) and half of me says he likes me. Marni says maybe he doesn't like anybody.  (5/13/87).  Maybe Han was in love with Marni! That would be a good twist. Although I think my 14-year-old self would have absolutely hated that storyline.

Everything seems to be going wrong. It's all because of Han. The rest of my life is great. I have a lot of friends (boy and girl). I have found something I'm really good at (writing). (5/14/87) Conclusion: Han was my everything.

I found out the girl he might like is Julie W. I hate her. (5/15/87). And you know what, I'm re-hating this Julie right now.

Han is going with Julie W. It's weird but I feel better now that it's clear. (5/16/87). I'm glad I felt better. But you know, here I am 31 years later, and I'm actually feeling a twinge of jealousy towards Julie. I think this means I'm strongly connecting to my past self.  The past and present are colliding.  Last night I started thinking of this project, and how it kind of reminds me of the Netflix miniseries Dark. I started listening to one of the songs from it, and it kind of felt like it should be the theme of my diary-readings.

My grandmother is over and she's driving me up the wall. All she talks about is food. (5/17/87). It's too bad she's not still alive. She could have become an Instagram foodie.

And also on May 17: Melissa thinks Julie W. is pretty and she started singing here comes the bride for Ham and her. That didn't make me too happy.  Ah! Sisters are so nice.  Right now I don't like Erin because she tells me all her problems but won't listen to mine.  That's a problem I'll have through out my life. Though maybe it's my karma for forcing my sister, Marni, etc. to listen to me go on and on about Han.

This morning we went to a science fiction thing expecting to see Robert Englund. We ended up seeing nothing but shit. (5/24/87). Was Robert Englund not there?  Or did we just miss him?

Well two good things happened today. First Han broke up with Julie, or Julie broke up with Han. I guess it doesn't really matter who broke up with who. Or does it? Second, Michael Emory asked me to the dance with him. I said yes. I like him as a friend.  (5/26/87). I can't say I remember this Michael.  Or...maybe I vaguely do. I think we hardly talked to each other at the dance. I wonder if I wrote about that in the diary. I shall see....

Han came in second in all his events.  I think I like him again.  I bought a dress for the dance. It is pink and looks like a prom dress. (5/24/87)

Well I sent three stories to Seventeen Magazine and I sent some letters to Penpals. (5/30/87) Han wasn't my only passion in life. I wrote a lot of stories and had tried very hard to get published. Sadly, that dream never really came true.

I am sad. June 1988 we are moving to Miami Florida. My parents are mad at me because I'm worried about little things like TV stations and cleaning ladies. (6/1/87). I'm sure I was worried about the big things as well.  I'm hoping/assuming my parents were reacting from their own stresses and were not literally angry at me for having trivial worries.

We didn't end up moving to Miami.

I like Mike a little more than a friend now. (6/3/87). I wish I remembered more about Mike.

It was the 8th grade dance. I wore a pink prom dress. I don't think Mike likes me anymore. I'm so embarrassed. I think if I danced good, he would. In the middle of dancing, he said, let's switch partners.  (6/4/87) Oh...that's sad.  My poor, young heart.

Erin came over to go swimming...I cleaned my room while Erin was here and she got a little mad. (6/6/87). I can't say I blame her.

Melissa and I spit mucus into a bowl and then added salt. It made the mucus very thick. Maybe that's why Cystic Fibrosis people have thick mucus. (6/9/87)  Wow. We were such little scientists.  I think I might have been actually right. Did I read that somewhere and that's why we tried the experiment?  Or was I having some kind of weird moment of brilliance?  From what I remember learning, in Cystic Fibrosis there's a problem with the chloride channel, so the mucus has too much salt and not enough water.

Ah! I just remembered. I do know that I knew that the sweat of people with CF has an excessive amount of salt. So maybe I connected things that way.

I am hungry and pissed off at my family. They are crazy. My dad is over the edge and everyone else is having a nervous breakdown. I only like Toby and Beau right now.  (6/10/87). I'm guessing we were all stressed out about the Miami thing. Toby and Beau, by the way, were our dogs.

Neil is treating Melissa like a baby. He did the same to me when I was 9 and as soon as I got older he hated me. He doesn't like to see people mature. (6/13/87).  I talked about the Neil thing in a previous post.  He was my sister's camp boyfriend and had come to visit at the same time that my cousin and Grandmother came to visit.  I'm not sure why we had all these people over at once? But I'm wondering if that's another reason my parents were on edge. Maybe it wasn't just the Miami thing.

My Life in 1987 (Part 1)

More excerpts from my teenage diary. These Hallmark diaries were supposed to last for only a year, but I had my first one for over two.  I think it's because I didn't write in it consistently.

I had a dream about Nuclear War. The radio announced it and after everyone thought they were going to die, the radio said just kidding. (1/15/87) Maybe that was a psychic dream about what was going to happen in Hawaii 31 years later.

I got an F on my science test "earthquakes". (1/26/87).  Oops.

I went early to school to work on my art project. In S.S we finished studying Georgia Indians. In gymnastics I am so bad. I hate Michael G. (1/29/87).  So far, these 1987 entries are mostly about school. There's much less stuff about CF.   

My mom, dad, and I watched Agnes of God. (1/30/87). I remember liking that movie a lot. I think it was one of my obsessions, but a minor one. 

I called the C.F.F to ask for volunteer work. I'm going to work there this summer. (2/2/87). Well, I was still into CF, and I should have known that because I end up working at the CF camp. But I think that was a few years later.  

Jon likes me. I like him. Isn't that great.  What???!!!  (2/5/87) I don't remember any boy liking me. I especially don't remember any mutual attractions.  And I don't even remember knowing a Jon.

Ah! I just saw that I misread things. Jon liked me. I liked Han. I guess I was being sarcastic when I said it was great. 

I really believe Han likes me. (2/6/87). Yeah...I think I was delusional.  

Today in P.E. because of the science fair, we watched Poltergeist II. It was good, plus Han was sitting in front of me. (2/9/87) VERY romantic.

Oye. I'm having a hard time reading a lot of these entries, because they're written in colored pencil.

I caused a big fight in my family. (2/28/87).  I don't explain what happened in the fight. I find it interesting that I took responsibility for it. Was I fully to blame?  Well...I probably was. I'm not shy about bitching about others in my diary. If I felt someone else was to blame, I would have probably said so.

Han got his haircut  He looks different. I still like him, though. (3/2/87). I wonder if I was being honest about that. 

Han got a jean jacket today. Wow! He looks good in it. (3/6/87). I wonder if it went well with his new haircut.

I like Han more than ever now because I talked to him a lot and he talks to me now and he smiles more. (3/13/87). There's a little part of me that's thinking, what if there WAS a mutual attraction between Han and myself and we were both too shy to do anything about it?  It would be so sweet. 

But another part of me is thinking Han and I might have exchanged like ten words, and that would have led me to hearing wedding bells.  

Nightmare on Elm Street III is so good. (3/16/87). Nightmare on Elm Street was another one of my obsessions. 

I don't know who I like, Han or Jon. (3/23/87). Wow! I wasn't expecting that development. Was I in the midst of a love triangle. I wish I remembered Jon. Was I actually starting to like him? Or was I settling because I so strongly desired a boyfriend?  

Today Heather Langenkamp was on the ABC Afterschool Special. It was called Can a Guy Say No? (4/1/87) I had a crush on Heather Langenkamp, and the homophobic side of myself was quite ashamed of that. I do remember that afterschool special. For some reason, what stands out to me is that it featured a Hostess Snow Ball.  

In Math I found out Han's favorite movie is Nightmare on Elm Street 3 and he wants to live in Hawaii when he grows up. (4/6/86)  I am now totally shipping Han and my 14-year-old self.

I wonder if Han's wish to move to Hawaii came true.  

Thursday, March 22, 2018

My Life in 1986 (Part 3)

More excerpts from my teenage diary....

I got Marni's present for her Bat Mitzvah. I got her 2 pencils, stationary, and a kit that comes with staples, glue, etc. I hope I don't fall asleep during the service. (8/22/86). The gift seems kind of blah to me, but maybe it's because I'm living in the Internet age. Back then, paper craft stuff was more useful.

Then again, I think there are still stores that sell stationery, pens, etc.  

I went to Marni's Bat Mitzvah. I prayed for a cure for Cystic Fibrosis while I was in the temple. Marni dances so bad, better than me, though. (8/23/86).

I hated dancing in those days.

I hate Kelly. She is still mad at Missy for writing mega in her yearbook. Then I said she has Cystic Fibrosis and Kelly said good. I said no it's not. It's fatal and she says that's even better. (8/26/86).

Wow. Real drama there.  I'm not sure what I meant by mega. Did Missy use really big handwriting? OR am I misreading my handwriting. Maybe Missy had written MAGA. Maybe she was channeling the future Trump campaign. In that case, she totally would deserve Kelly's wrath. These days I would not be in support of using someone's illness or disability as a defense against their bad behavior. Though if Missy simply used large letters and wasn't channeling the Trump Cult, I'm totally on her side and not Kelly's.  

Ms. Smith is such a good teacher (8/28/86). Good enough that we should have given her a gun? Or good enough that we should give her a raise? I'm intrigued by my liking of Ms. Smith. It seems that usually I'd bitch about my teachers.  

Melissa and I are having a Cystic Fibrosis book and toy sale to raise money for it. (9/1/86). From what I remember, it was a failure. But we'd get better at this later when we'd have basement sales and bake sales. I think the problem with our first sale was our prices were too high.

Being obsessed with Cystic Fibrosis instead of Poltergeist might make me a better person but it sure makes me cry a lot. Now I almost cry every day. (9/20/86). In a few years, my Poltergeist obsession would return, and THAT would end up making me cry a lot too. 

I called the C.F.F today. They are very nice. I'm going to do a bowl-a-thon.  (9/24/86). I was very dedicated...obsessed.  Seriously, I think about 80% of what I'm reading in this diary is Cystic Fibrosis related. Though I'm not sure why I said I'm no longer obsessed with Poltergeist. Each diary entry ends with a quote from Poltergeist II. I'm wondering how long I kept that up.  

I got my braces tightened. They kill.(10/1/86) This was something I must have blocked from my memory. When Jack got braces, I told him I didn't remember it ever hurting me much. Oops. 

Alf was so funny today. Amazing Stories was stupid. (10/6/86) I think I usually liked Amazing Stories. I wonder why I didn't like that particular episode.

Marni slept over. I got Frank Deford's address. Alex (his daughter who died of CF) is the person I really want to write but oh well. I told Marni and Melissa about Alex being with me sometimes. They think of it as a joke. 10/10/86 Well, if Mike Pence can believe God talks to him, I guess I could believe I was being visited by a deceased child.  I still have weird spiritual beliefs like this sometimes, but I've learned to not blurt it out to my friends, sisters, etc.

I love Alex. She is my very best friend. (10/12/86). I find all of this disturbing. I'm trying to be tolerant of my younger self, but I'm finding it hard. her credit, she at least didn't do anything dangerously crazy. 

I'm going to be a Chinese person for Halloween. (10/16/86). I was delusional AND racist. Nice. Worse yet, is I remember those costumes. We wore kimonos, yet called ourselves Chinese. Holy Fucking shit.

In P.E, we watched Return of the Jedi and right when Darth Vader took of his mask, the bell rang. (11/1/86). Did we exercise while watching the movie?

I went to the back doctor today. It was so boring. (11/17/86). I find this interesting. My niece had back surgery in December for Kyphosis. I have kyphosis too and was asking my parents if that had been looked at, what did the doctors say, etc.  I couldn't remember. They didn't seem to remember much either but said it was the postural type and not the disease/syndrome type. I wasn't sure how seriously it was taken. Was I looked at briefly by our family doctor or did it go further than that?  Well, thanks to my diary, I now know more.  

Kim is so prejudice. I don't like her much. (11/25/86). Yeah, but wearing a Kimono for Halloween and calling yourself Chinese is totally fine? 

I saw Ms. Fitzgerald, Tammy L, and Celeste G. and Lizzy R. at the mall (11/29/86). Celeste is the one I wrote about obsessively the year before. This is the first time I've seen her mentioned in many months.

I was depressed today because people kept calling me weird. (12/5/86). Now I'm proud to be weird, though I find my level of weirdness at age 14 to be a bit disturbing.  It's sad. How much more depressed would this teenager be if she knew her future self was also judging her?  

Mrs. Polk is adopting a baby boy from Korea. Jason W. was saying these ignorant things like his eyes will be ugly.  (12/12/86). Ignorant, cruel, AND wrong.  I guess this is one of the things about racism. There ARE different levels. My Halloween costume? That was ignorant. But my intentions were innocent. I had a thing for Asian culture. In my own silly way, I felt I was celebrating Asian culture rather than causing offense. 

There's ignorant prejudice, and then there's nasty, cruel prejudice.  

We saw The Diary of Ann Frank today. It was boring. (12/19/86)  In a few years, my obsession with Cystic Fibrosis would be replaced by other interests, including the Holocaust. 

We went from Palm Springs to San Diego. We went to McDonalds to eat. When we got to the hotel their was a cute oriental girl who came in a limousine. She kept on playing with the door. (12/26/86) Yeah. And I guess I didn't have politically correct terminology back then? Or was "oriental" more socially acceptable back in the 1980's. I'm kind of doubting it.  

We went to the San Diego Zoo! It was okay. Then we went to this stupid place. We left right away. Then we went too Seaport Plaza. We saw the clown used in Poltergeist at the clown shop. (12/30/86). I remember seeing the clown. I think it was one of the most exciting events of my life. I'm wondering why I wasn't more enthusiastic about the zoo. That kind of surprises me. Maybe it was too crowded? I'm also wondering about the stupid place? What was that? Would I still think it's stupid? Is it still around?  I've been wanting to go to my parent's house to look at my dad's massive collection of albums. Maybe when I do that, I'll look at the California trip albums and see if there are any photos of this mysterious place.  

Monday, March 19, 2018

My Life in 1986 (Part 2)

Here's more stuff from my teenage diaries.

I don't feel well. I had strep throat two weeks ago. (3/24/86). The medical drama continues. This was around the time I had mono. I guess I'm soon going to be diagnosed. Or I was already diagnosed, but I didn't want to mention it in my diary. Maybe I was embarrassed because it's known as the kissing disease.

I hadn't kissed anyone, by the way.  

Never mind about the secrecy....

I have mono. I haven't gone to school for so long. Monday I'm going. (4/22/86). I didn't write for almost a month! 

Well...maybe there WAS secrecy. Shame? Why else didn't I write for that long? I know mono makes you tired but too tired to pick up a pen? 

Next weekend Poltergeist II is coming out and next weekend we are getting a new dog a black female standard poodle. I want it to be named Gypsy.  (5/?/86)  I was a big fan of the Poltergeist movies, and we never ended up with a dog named Gypsy. Instead we had a Toby...and later a Truffles.  

I went shopping today. I got a Family Circus book, slime, Bonkers, a book for my mom (Mother's Day), Doll Star magazine for Melissa, and soap opera magazine for me. I also got Hands Across America record. (5/10/86).  I think Bonkers was a candy?  I feel a memory, sort of.  Something like Starbursts?  I'll Google in a minute.  We actually went to the Hands Across America event—I think just Melissa (my sister) my dad, and myself. I still sing parts of the song sometimes.  

Googled Bonkers. Lord Wiki says it's a candy. A company called Leaf Candy is planning to start manufacturing the candy again. 

My parents were nice today. I love them so much. (5/11/86). I wonder what they said or did to make me say that.  I've had a very rocky relationship with my parents.  Did we get along better when I was younger? Maybe my anger didn't begin until later in my teen years. Or did I have anger back then but felt too guilty to express it?  I notice that I said my parents were nice TODAY rather than something more general.  

I saw Poltergeist 4 times now (6/26/85). I rarely see movies multiple times anymore...especially at the theater. The only time I've done it in the last ten years or so is with Inside Out.  That's in terms of a theater movie, but even with DVD or streaming, I usually watch movies only once. 

I hate being sick. I hope they find a cure for Cystic Fibrosis (7/5/86). That sounds like I have Cystic Fibrosis. I had swimmer's ear and the beginning of an obsession with Cystic Fibrosis.  It happened after I saw the TV movie Alex: The Life of a Child.  

The obsession eventually led to me meeting my husband! 

I read the book Alex today. It was so sad. I think they will find a cure for Cystic Fibrosis on June 4, 1994. (7/17/86)  It's close to 24 years past 1994 and they still haven't found a cure. But they HAVE come up with some pretty good treatments.  I'm not sure where I got that date. Did I just randomly pick it out of my brain?  Was I having some kind of prediction but not of the right thing?  

We are in NY. We went in central park. It was neat. But then we went to China Town. It was disgusting.  (8/2/86) If I didn't know myself, I would worry that my statement had been racist.  But I had a huge crush on a Chinese guy, and I think I had a thing for Asian people in general. Which yeah...IS kind of racist. But it's not the kind of racist where you don't want to be somewhere because of the demographics.  

I read some of Alex today, and then I cried. When they find a cure for CF, I will have a party. (8/7/86)  I was very passionate about the cause back then.  

I wrote 2 plays today. We'll do them when I have a friend over like Marni or Nwaka. (8/8/86)  Why? Did they have acting talent?  Or were they the only ones I could convince to participate in my writing adventures?  I do remember that Marni was into acting and singing?  I'm not sure about Nwaka.  And now I'm wondering whatever happened to Nwaka. I don't remember much about her beyond seventh grade. Did she move? Or did she just fade away into a different friend group?

As for writing. I totally forgot, but seventh grade is when it all started for me. It's interesting to me that I didn't talk about it more. I think I was too busy complaining about teachers, fangirling over Poltergeist II, and planning for a cure for Cystic Fibrosis. 

Note: I just remembered Nwaka's last name and Googled her.  She got married in September 2016 and registered at Bed Bath and Beyond.  I hope she's doing well. I don't remember much about her, but I do kind of remember her being very nice.

If I could have anything I wanted this is what it would be. They'd find a cure for CF. Then a couple of years later I would star in the sequel to Poltergeist with Heather O'Rourke and Ralph Macchio, me and Heather would become best friends and I would marry Ralph Macchio and adopt kids from around the world. (8/20/86).

Fifteen years later, on that exact date, I'd give birth to my son Jack. Ralph Macchio was not the father.  

My Life in 1986 (Part 1)

Here are more excerpts from my teenage diary.

I was 13-years-old and in 7th grade.

Mr. Rector was weird today because he had a man inspecting our class. (1/9/86). This is something I have remembered and thought about periodically throughout my life. It's part of a life lesson in how people can act one way when they're trying to impress and a totally different way when they're not feeling the need to impress.

I'm not sure about Mr. Rector's behavior, though. Did he act in a way I'd today judge as being inappropriate?  Or was he a fun teacher with a cool sense of humor that was understood by teens but would have been misjudged by his supervisors? I have vague memories of him. I think he used humor a lot, but maybe it was a type of humor that relied on making fun of his students. He probably made us laugh sometimes and other times went too far.  Maybe I'll get more insight as I read more.

I want to see the movie Trolls so badly.  Jenny Beck is in that movie. She's Elizabeth from V.

(1/15/86) I was a big fan of V.

There was a bomb threat and school today. I sort of wished the school would blow up and I sort of didn't. It didn't blow up. (1/17/86). Well, we didn't often worry about being mass-murdered because of NRA greediness and selfishness, but I guess we still had some safety concerns.  I'm assuming my feelings would have been different if, at the time, many schools were being blown up. Danger is exciting until it becomes a fairly likely reality.

Erin is nice, but her listening habits stink. Tu is great perfect wonderful the best. Sometimes to good. (2/2/86) One thing 13-year-old Dina and 45-year-old Dina have in common: we're both very judgmental of other people's listening skills.

I'm noticing that I've stopped talking about my beloved Celeste. It's like she's ceased to exist. I'm guessing we already started drifting apart, but it was too painful for me to talk about.

I heart David Oliver, Han, and Lane (2/6/86). Note: There's an actual doodle of a heart there. David Oliver was an actor on Another World. He was one of my top three favorite celebrities; the others being Heather O'Rourke and Bridgette Anderson. All three died tragically young. So I've felt kind of cursed. Though now that I think of it, I also had a thing for Marc Singer. As far as I know, he's still alive.

Yep. Just checked. He's alive and turned seventy a few months ago. I had a crush on him, but it wasn't a romance crush. It was a I-wish-he-was-my-dad kind of crush.  I think we should look beyond romance crushes. I think there are all types: I wish he was my big brother.; I was she was my younger sister. I wish we were best friends. I wish I was her....

Back to my three mentioned loves. Han was in my class. I don't think I had much conversation WITH him, but I think I had an excessive amount of conversation ABOUT him. I think I drove my sister nuts.

I have no idea who Lane is.

I hate Mr. Rector so much. (2/13/86). But I don't explain why. And frankly, there's a lot of hating going on in my diary, especially towards teachers, so I'm not sure if he actually did anything that shocking.

We have to throw up for science class soon. I'm not. Even if I get a bad grade. (2/18/86). Amen to that! I have had a vomit phobia since fourth grade, but it wasn't as bad then as it is now.  But still!  I don't remember the experiment exactly, but it involved saltine crackers. I think you chew them; then spit it out, and study your saliva. But some people end up vomiting?  I think I somehow managed to miss the event.

I am sick. I have a sore throat and headaches. I am tired. (2/26/86). I end up getting mono that year, so maybe this the beginning of that.  A few lines down: My back hurts right now. I am sick sick sick.

Sunday, March 18, 2018

My Life in 1985 (Part 2)

Here is more interesting/disturbing/fun stuff from my teenage diaries.

At school me and Tu were really making fun of Carrie R. If only Carrie R. was nice, she would have lots of friends and everything. (12/6//85)  Well, fuck!  Fuck my grammar, and fuck my bullying. I often remember the times I was mistreated and the times I stood by the mistreated. I kind of blocked out most of the memories of when I was the bully. And not only was I a bully. I blamed the victim.

I think I hate Leslie. She is always laughing at me because I'm Jewish and Nwaka cause she's black.  (12/9/85) Was Leslie a racist? I doubt it. Maybe she was just a bit ignorant? Or had an edgy sense of humor that I wasn't ready to appreciate? I'm not sure.

Marni is so mean. I hate her. She said to my face that she hated my drawings. (12/10/85).  I'm getting the idea that seventh graders are MEAN...and I include my self in that.

I can't wait till Celeste comes. She is so nice, but she wants to be really popular, so I hope she likes me. (12/11/85). Celeste was another friend I met through my father's work. I remember liking her a lot and was eager for her to start attending my school. But it was one of those stories where two people become friends; then one becomes more popular and the other gets left behind. I think I've seen that on TV shows.

Celeste slept over. We had lots of fun. We put makeup on each other and made stories on the tape recorder. I made the stories up and Celeste did the sound effects. (12/14/85).

The TV shows are coming to my mind now—Freaks and Geeks and Stranger Things.  I think I was a Millie/Barb kind of person.

One thing I notice is that I talk about Celeste a obsessively. I don't remember having a crush on her. But I am wondering if I was a bit overbearing and clingy?  Maybe it wasn't just my lack of coolness that made us drift apart. Maybe I scared her away by liking her too much?  Or is it normal/common for teens to be so focused on a friend?  It could also be that, though, I wrote about her a lot in my diary, I didn't act as obsessed when with her. I'm not sure.

Note to my younger self: You should've used pens for all your diary entries. Pencil was not a good idea! You're going to make your future self go blind.

We watched Gremlins. I gave that a 9.6. Beverly Hills Cop 9. Cat's Eye 8.6 (12/24/86).

I'm surprised I liked Beverly Hills Cop more than Cat's Eye.

I'm thinking more about my treatment of Carrie R. Of course there's a chance, I was more horrible than I remember. But a part of me is thinking/hoping that what I meant "by made fun of" is that we did it behind her back. Yeah, that's pretty awful too. But it's probably better than joining in with a friend to make fun of someone to their face. The other thing that makes me lean towards this scenario is that from what I remember of Tu, she was pretty sweet and innocent. I don't picture either of us being the type to openly bully someone. Then again, sometimes the "sweetest" people can be cruel, but it's all seen as okay, because their victim isn't seen as being worthy of kindness.  

My Life in 1985 (Part 1)

We plan to move in the next few years. The last two times we moved, we upsized. This time we're going to be downsizing...which means we need to do some decluttering.

Right now I have the luxury of having a whole walk in closet filled with bins of diaries and documents I rarely look at. I shall probably need to discard a lot of stuff.

I've been thinking lately that I need to reacquaint and bond with my younger self by reading my old diaries. So what I'm planning to do is read the diaries, use my blog to copy things I find weird and/or interesting, and then...I guess I'll throw away the diary.  (Yikes!!)  

The first diary I'm going to look at is from 1985.  I'm pretty sure it's my first one. My first entry is November 20, which was two days before my 13th birthday. we go.

Note: Punctuation is almost completely absent in the diary, so I'm going to add least periods. 

I got a bad grade on my Japan test. I don't want to show my parents. I don't know what they'll do. (11/21/85)   I find this strange. I can't remember my parents getting angry over grades. I think they were pretty relaxed when it came to that.  

I got 2 books from my parents and one from my younger sister Melissa. The pen I'm writing with now which is a glitter pen, a Cabbage Patch named Glynis Carolyn but we nicknamed her Carrie, Guess Jeans and Cabbage Patch Clothes which is so cute on Carrie.  (11/22/85) I was...How do you say it?  Immature, I guess. I don't like using that word, though, because it seems derogatory.  I used to be ashamed of the fact that I played with dolls into my teen years and probably would have kept playing with them past my college years if it was socially acceptable. And hey, I actually did get back into it when Jack was young. But now I think imaginary play should exist at all ages. I think these days non-children have more outlets, such as cosplay, interactive fan fiction, role-playing games, etc.  Those things existed back then too, but I think it was much more quieter and less socially accepted by mainstream society. 

Another note: I'm wondering who the hell gave me Guess Jeans. I've always hated wearing jeans. And I was never into wearing name-brand fashion.

I went to a party at the Herman's house. I met a girl named Karina. She was in 9th grade. She was really nice. I talked to her the whole time.  (11/24/85)  I think Karina might have been Australian. My dad worked with an Australian man, and I became friends with his daughter for a short time. This is significant, because I later became obsessed with Australia. Also I was socially awkward, so I think it was somewhat special for me to go a social gathering and find someone I could connect with so well. I'm not 100% sure Karina is the Aussie, but I'm pretty sure she was.   

I am hooked on the Muppet Baby song so badly. Everyone hates that song but me. (11/26/85).  I still like that song!  I think I had overestimated it's unpopularity.  I'm sure it is well-loved by many.  

The plane food was so gross. It was gross chicken and the fork and silverware was dirty. (11/27/85). Major cultural history there. This is back when you got hot meals on domestic economy!

I'm sleeping over Grandma and Grandpa Robert's house. (11/29/85). Grandpa would be dead a little over a month later. I wonder if he was noticeably sick.  We had often seen him getting treatments for heart disease, so I was probably used to him being ill. I'm not sure if I knew or would have noticed his worsening condition.  

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

I'm Going To Try to Stick With My Choir

In the past few months, I have sometimes felt pressured by Sarah Silverman to open my heart and help build bridges between the left and right.

She has wonderful, inspiring stories, including a woman who left the Westboro Church and married a Jew and a white supremacist who is now against racism.  

I definitely think people can change. 

And it can go both ways. I had a former-aunt who went from left to right. And I think she became pretty far right.

I had a right-wing Christian friend who became pagan. Then she and her family moved away. I've wondered how her religious transformation affected her politics. Is she a right-winged pagan?  I don't think that's common, but I doubt it's incredibly rare. Or did she move politically to the left? And if she's left now, is she far left?  Is she more left than me?    

Anyway, I do believe people can change.

But I don't feel like being one of the potential bridges anymore.

My heart is closing.

My heart is becoming cold.

I'm beginning to see all most MAGA as people who'd eagerly run to the auction houses if slavery became legal again.

I'm full of distrust, disrespect, and disgust. 

I used to make an effort to talk to the other side on Twitter.

Okay. I should admit it.

It wasn't always about peace-making. Sometimes I liked....

Trolling?  I guess that's what it would be.

I liked trying to dig holes in their thought processes.

I liked trying to make them uncomfortable with my liberal views. 

I liked taking their insults and turning it back at them. There is something very enjoyable about calling a right-wing person a "Snowflake" and asking if they're triggered. 

Sometimes I DID want to try to understand more.

Sometimes I hoped we could build bridges.

Sometimes I wanted them to see me and think, Hey Liberals aren't that bad after all! 

But now I'd like to stop most of it.

I continue to enjoy reading the the same way I enjoy really scary, creepy horror movies like The Ring. But I've been trying not to respond.

I'm giving up.

I want to sing to the choir.

I want to stay in my bubble.

It's not 100%  I have MAGA people in my family...and other forms of Republicans. I love these people, though, sometimes their political beliefs make me want to scream. (I blog instead). I am guessing they feel the same way about my politics. We love each other, and we struggle to tolerate certain aspects of each other.  

I used to think that the most vicious people on Twitter, whether left or right, didn't have family and friends who differed politically.  But recently I started to think, what if it's the opposite? What if those of us who are most eager to argue are the ones who have family and friends that are on the other side?  What if Twitter, and other social media, is our way of getting our aggression out...because with family and friends, we want to keep the peace?  

I don't know....

It's probably a little of both.

You know, if I had the strength and kindness to make all my interactions with MAGA people bridge-building conversations, maybe I'd keep up with it.

But I'm not strong enough, and I'm not kind enough.

So most of my interactions are just creating more drama.

I'm adding more fuel to the fire.

I'm not making things better. 

I'm wasting time.

I'm tired of it all.

And hell, sometimes I have a hard time remaining peaceful with even other people on the left—those who are less left than me and those who are more left. Or sometimes we might be equally left, yet we still have different opinions.  If it's a struggle to tolerate those who differ from me a little bit politically, how can I do a good job tolerating those who are very different?

Another thing I'm thinking in term of building might happen but maybe not in the context of political conversation.  

Shit. Actually I've changed my mind.

What I was going to say is we might start talking to someone about other things—like movies, TV shows, food, the weather, etc.  Then later we'll sit there and say, Oh! I didn't know you were MAGA. I didn't know you were a Liberal! Wow! You guys aren't so bad after all. You tell me why you like Trump, and I'll tell you why I think we should have universal health care.  

But these days, so much is wrapped up in politics— football games, chicken sandwiches, celebrities, pizza, sports stars, country music, ice-cream....

We can probably find SOME commonalities, but the fighting will start soon enough.

I love Disney World!

I love Disney World Too!

I just wish they didn't add Trump to the Hall of Presidents.

What???!!!!!  So I guess you're one of those Libtards that hates America.  

Less Fantastic

Tim and Jack talk a lot about Shake Shack. We've visited the original in Madison Square Park and have also eaten at the duplicates in Tokyo, Washington D.C, Dallas, and Brooklyn.

From what Tim and Jack have told me, the hamburgers at the Madison Square Park Shake Shack are almost mythical. The hamburgers at the other Shake Shacks are pretty much normal hamburgers. They're not bad, but they're not very memorable.They certainly don't live up to the wonderfulness of the Madison Square Park Shake Shack hamburgers.

I think this happens a lot to fantastic restaurants who decide to expand.The copies don't live up to the original.The quality goes down.

I thought about all this after watching the trailer for the new JK Rowling movie—Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald.

I'm not going for an analogy here. I'm not going to say Harry Potter was the Madison Square Park and the Fantastic Beasts are the franchises.

It's more like I was trying to understand my feelings about Fantastic Beasts compared to the Harry Potter series, and Shake Shack came to mind. It's more in terms of levels of liking/loving something.

It's really not Harry Potter vs. Fantastic Beasts, though. It's the books in general vs. the movies.

The books to me are like a Shake Shack burger. There's just something so magical about the series. To me, it felt mythical.  I've never read anything like it, and after reading it, I had a difficult time reading other books. It's like going from Shake Shack to McDonalds. You long for the awesome, but have to be satisfied with mediocre. And kind of everything seems mediocre soon after reading Harry Potter.

The movies on the other hand? To me, they're okay.They're average fantasy movies. I don't think they're awful. Nor do I think they're brilliant. This goes for both the Harry Potter movies and the Fantastic Beasts ones.

If I was the boss of the universe, JK Rowling would stop making movies; stop talking about her characters on Twitter, and instead write more novels.  Of course (obviously!) that wouldn't be my top priority. It would be pretty far below Trump and all that.

Never Tickle Your Children!!!

In a recent post I wrote about a manipulation technique in which the manipulator takes a small request or suggestion and blows it up into something crazy. This way they can feel like a victim and wallow in persecution fantasies.

I was involved with something like this on Twitter. The idea that one should not continue tickling a child who has asked for the tickling to stop turned don't want us playing with our children!

When an adult tickles a child who has asked the adult to stop, they are teaching the child that adults can touch children even when the child doesn't want to be touched. Eventually that lesson can morph into, people can touch you if they want. Don't bother saying no. You'll be ignored.

Tickling is confusing, though, because people laugh when they're tickled.

BUT the laughing is usually an automatic response. It doesn't mean the tickling is enjoyable. It doesn't mean the victim is amused.

Some people do enjoy tickling, and that's fine. I think parents should definitely continue playing tickling games with those children. But to figure out if they have one of those children, they should go with what the child says and not whether the child laughs or not. I think they should also respect variances in desire and mood.  Just because a child wants to be tickled on Monday, it doesn't mean you have a right to tickle her on Tuesday when she's crying for you to stop.

For those on Twitter who claimed I didn't want them playing with their children, I provided a list of alternate activities. And I'll also provide a list here.

A) tickle a child who likes tickling

B) tag

C) hide-and-seek

D) peek-a-boo

e) cupcake decorating

f) playdoh

g) horsey rides on your back

h) Candy Land and other board games

i) Card games

j) Video games

k) A walk together

l) Jumping on the bed

m) swimming

But no....

It seems, for some parents, none of the activities can match the pleasure of touching a child who doesn't want to be touched in that way. And all that's fine, you know, because hey, they're not touching the kids penis or vagina. So it's not abuse.

It might not be sexual abuse. It might not be physical abuse. But I do think it's emotional abuse.

Now sometimes there might be misunderstandings. A parent might think the game is fun, and then the child gets mad. You know...the adult picks up the child and hangs her upside down. The adult thinks they're both having a great time. Then when the child is right side up again, the adult sees the child is angrily crying. Mistakes like that happen. If it's not so often and the adult doesn't act like some kind of terrifying, angry predator, I wouldn't label it as abusive. OR let's say an adult has often tickled a child who has begged them to stop, BECAUSE they were ignorant about the whole thing.  I can sort of understand that.

But for those who choose willful ignorance and insist it's their right to tickle THEIR child whenever they want.



I may be letting my overactive imagination and stereotyping muscles go out of hand here, but I imagine these things about the  people who insist they have a right to tickle their child whenever they want

A) This tickling is not the only form of emotional abuse that's happening in the family.

B) That people who insist they have a right to tickle THEIR child also believe they have a right to do what they damn well please with whatever gun they decide to buy.

C) Believe that "libtards" are destroying the world.