Monday, July 29, 2013

Risk and Closure

It was a fun, amazing and enlightening weekend.

We thought we were taking a risk, not having spoken to anyone in our previous large group of friends since...our "meltdown" (there's really no good way to describe with a word). Some we hadn't seen in over three years, some it has been over two, but we took the risk to go listen to an outrageously talented singer, who we'd known longer than almost anyone else in the city, sing (we had dated one of her drummers for nearly two years). We had been telling James about her since we first met him, and now that he is allowed to travel outside of the United States, he couldn't get us back to the city where we spent the first few months of our relationship, fast enough.

We walked into the venue and she was on stage, we didn't see her at first but James spotted her partially hidden by a column.
Pointing to her he said "There she is." recognizing her from photos we had recently shown him; and just as he raised his finger she looked towards the entrance.
We grabbed James' finger, pulled it down and said "Don't point!", and then retreated towards a side area where we couldn't be seen, leaving James standing there intoxicated by her voice. We could see in his eyes he was hooked. Later he would tell us that it's amazing how good she is, and how she makes it look so easy, and other things, his eyes sparkling with amazement.

At our seat with Fabulous Person we listened to her sing, FP was also impressed, we talked about her voice and we'd bet money James will go talk to her, even though we had told him not to. We had no idea who might be there that we didn't want to see - people who were angry at us for how our friendships dissolved, how we abandoned them, some were angry about this blog - we didn't want to draw attention.

James comes over to the table and says he talked to her, but didn't tell her who he was, only that "My wife told me we had to drive [x] hours to hear you sing." He asked if we'd like her to come over to the table, and we said of course, but it wouldn't be a good idea.

He went off and talked to her again shortly, coming back to the table he said that she had recognized "me" the minute we walked into the bar, and that she would come over and talk soon.

Nervous. Butterflies. Deep breaths.

When she came over we gave her a big hug. It's been three years since we last saw her, and the last time was on a girls trip to a U.S.A. city for the 4th of July...where yours truly had almost got hauled off to the drunk tank for passing out in the hotel bar washroom and then refusing to leave, after a night heavy with substances and alcohol. There's more to the story, but to keep it short...that was her last memory of us. Great.

We asked her about everybody else, what they were up to. To find out she hasn't seen most of them in just about the same amount of time...we were stunned. She mentioned people she hadn't talked to; she mentioned how one of the last times she had talked to The Non-Bestie she was pissed because of this blog; she mentioned how two of the girls had come and had a drink and left without, apparently, talking to her.

She mentioned how funny it was that "I" showed up this weekend...she had just been reading my blog this week

More shock.

We're so glad we went to hear her sing. We're so glad we got to talk to her. We're looking forward to hearing her sing again.

What we risked, was a lot of confrontation, ridicule, a lot of awkwardness, a wide-range of things, from the most important group of people we had ever had in our life.
What we got, was closure.

She bought us a shot, let us gush over how much we miss hearing her sing; we stayed and "closed down the bar".

Maybe the cracks we begin to feel, to see, in the the web of relationships...wasn't out imagination and paranoia after all. Maybe after New Years that final year when we lost touch with everybody, because we stopped texting and calling them, and they us, for the most part, was just...what was going to happen.


We spent part of every day of our trip with Fabulous Person, we had a great time, great conversation, and we're so glad we finally got to go back. We're planning another trip for October.

The city itself, our favourite neighborhoods of downtown, have changed a bit, but it still remains the same: Familiar, comfortable, cultural, unique.

Home, never to be home again.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Old Stomping Grounds

This weekend we're going to haunt some old stomping grounds.
Two days in the city we love, the city that we had to leave a year and a half ago.
Two days to wander the sidewalks we used to walk (and dance on) at all hours, the grocery store we used to drink and Tweet in (people who have followed us on Twitter for two years know what we're talking about), the video store we used to listen to our iPod (and dance) in, and the local bar we did all of those things in (listen to our iPod, drinking and Tweeting).
We're also going to listen to our very favourite singer, a woman who used to be our friend. We'll stand in the back of the room, hopefully won't be seen, and be transported.
The great restaurants are simply a footnote, but a big footnote (locally sourced ingredients, from scratch cooking, the stomach dances with excitement)

We ALSO get to see our old friends Fabulous Person and Girl Crush to add to the fun.

The city we love and lived in for seven years will always be home; the neighborhood we lived in at the very end, especially. Despite the life-changing events, the pain experienced is a life we pine for and think about often. It's hard to let go of; painting and writing in our one-bedroom apartment overlooking the busy intersection of the Boho artsy neighborhood of the city; doing work, for an organization, that we felt was important (though was hard, and perhaps detrimental, for some of us, mentally).
It was a place many of us had wanted to be for years.

And now we're here.

Saturday, July 20, 2013

A Fight For Them All

After painting tonight we sat down and watched a show on msnbc about prison inmates ('Lockup: Raw').

We've never seen it before. It's actually really interesting; and heartbreaking -tonight it is, anyway. (Knowing us, some of us would probably not think so)

This show makes us, well, me, miss the many homeless, low-income, and mentally ill people we worked with in one of our previous jobs (the one we got fired from almost exactly two years ago).

People don't respect the homeless, the low-income, people who struggle because of mental illness. Often those people are all part of the same group. Some people play a victim, in their day-to-day life, meanwhile able to manage a semblance of a productive life. The people we've met and knew on a daily basis never did that...they just seemed...lost and trying. Lost and fighting. Lost and being defeated. But they never seemed like victims.

We remember one guy. He was very nice. He struggled with some pretty severe mental illness. As a matter of fact we had met him the first few times while he was going through a schizophrenic episode. Then he got put into medical care.
When he came back he was..."completely normal". While he was "no longer ill" he kept coming back to the facility where we worked for quite a long time. We got to know him, his story, his past; he had been successful in law-enforcement, a father, a husband...he told us about the voices of angels and demons he used to hear.
He had been, and still was, fairly religious.
Eventually he started asking us to go out for with coffee with him, and after repeated "rejection", he came around less and less. We probably will never forget him.

In the short time (almost a year) we worked closely with people who had criminal histories, mental disorders, were high on drugs - from meth, to chemicals they huffed in changed our view of the people who fall through the cracks of society.

We may struggle with mental health issues on a day-to-day basis, like so many in the world; but working closely with those was something special. It was something sobering. It was something that made us want to fight for them all.
We write for them.

Some of us are hard angry bitches.
Thankfully we're not all like that.

Friday, July 12, 2013

Late Night Complaints

So, we haven't written about it, because it feels complainy...we hate talking about our pains every day...because it just seems...well...complainy.
But for a couple of weeks now our left hip join has been in considerable pain, it causes limping; and our thumbs/hands have been in massive pain whenever we lift/grip things...which unfortunately our job includes a lot of. (pain which prior to this only happened occasionally, and always when our hands were in cold weather/submersed in cold water)

So, in addition to the constant neck and back pain...that makes us exhausted (but usually unable to sleep) and cranky...we now have hip pain, and hand pain (that extends all the way up the inside of our arms to the elbow).

James has applied for a new job and had an initial interview. A job that includes health insurance after 30 days.
We're got our very painful fingers crossed.
It'll be the first time we've been able to see a doctor in the United States, if he gets the job, in nearly 10 years...we miss Canadian Healthcare right now.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Hiatus Temporaneous

Canada Day passed (cries for missing Canada) and Independence Day is near. Summer is hitting its peak. Before you know it will be starting our newest round at University and losing our mind.

We're taking a a break from writing this month (except in cases of necessity and pure inspiration), to try to focus on finishing some more paintings, and working on a project with a group of people from Twitter.
And...there's fishing to be done, and the garden to tend to in between. And our birthday at the end of the month.
Plus work pretty much zaps our brain's ability to write.

We worked in the garden on Sunday for over five hours and are just now able to tolerate the physical pain that caused. It sucks being young and full of arthritis and other random physical ailments.

In the meantime...some selected highlights from 2011-2013

We write about sex, life, mental illness/health, personal relationships, current events, art, philosophy, food, and more.

The Stories of Us - A grouping of all the entries we've written about our past. Contains some material not suitable for sensitive people and those under the age of 18. []

The Mental Health Entries:

- Mostly Dissociative Identity Disorder/Multiple Personality Disorder Related
The Other Girl - Stuff She Wrote:
General Health:
"Fuck Face"
James/The Boyfriend/The Husband:
Food & Cooking
Opinion/Philosophy/Current Events:

Social Media: (Social Media is ever-evolving, older information may not be up-to-date.)
    If you have any questions for us we are very open and will answer to our best ability - this is totally the month to ask us questions.
    You can either ask us on Twitter, in the comment section of a blog entry here, or e-mail us at justcallmefrank2010 (at)