Dear Mari, I've been following you since Ned linked to something you posted in his BonerParty days, yes, it's been that long and yes, it's built into one of those odd "this stranger is my friend!" internet-type of things, which is why I'm posting anonymously, but it seems the haters have been coming out of the woodwork recently and I just want you to know that you are incredibly interesting, funny, intelligent and inspiring. Take as much time as you need, I'll keep checking for new posts.
God bless you and god bless the years where I would thank blogs like “boner party” for my 15 minutes of fake internet fame.
My hands and nails have always been one of my biggest source of shame and embarrassment. Being a barber means that I probably have cut off my right middle knuckle so often that I have no feeling any more. The side of my index finger, when I run my thumb across it is covered raised scars and rough skin from point cutting into my own hand for the past ten years. I’ve spent hours staring at my hands and wonder how other women have long, delicate, ivory hands with perfect groomed, long strong manicured nails. My nails are always brittle, peeling, breaking, close enough to hurt even now as I type this. I try to always keep them polished but that doesn’t mask the true nature of my beat up, working hands.
Even in middle school, when my teeth stretched out further when I smiled, when my hair, limp and tentacle like over my shoulders, and my glasses slid down my greasy nose, even then I was always nervous about my hands. Squeezing the tip of my round sausage like fingers in hopes that some how I could mold them into elegant, poetic paws like my other girlfriends. Like I was made of clay. I could mold my own body into what I thought was beautiful. I was too embarrassed to join my girlfriends in manicure parties, and most of the time volunteered to help them with their opposite hands instead.
I’m not clay though. My hands never changed, instead they became more scared and muscular. After I was hit by a car on my bike two years ago my left thumb refused to move correctly due to a snapped tendon. So now, not only do I have torn hands, I can’t even make the number 4 correctly. My thumb will reach a certain spot and then refuse to move. It just hovers there, shaking and unsure. I always thought this was a myth, but my old deep scar from the accident… I can feel it when it rains. It aches. My hand aches and can hurt while I’m working if its raining outside. I always thought it was a myth. Or it only happens to old war veterans. But it doesn’t, it can happen to 28 year old girls and insecurities on their hands.
And if you think this is bad, you have no idea what I feelings about my feet are.
But I’m not clay. I can not mold myself into what I think to be perfect or beautiful. I think that’s a good thing, if I were clay… I would constantly be molding myself into I turned into something that even I didn’t know where I started from. Not because I’m that insecure were I want to change everything about myself, but because as the years change and as I get older, my idea of what is beautiful has become so vast and changed so many times that I would constantly be molding and molding and molding myself into something different from the next. That the only next thing to mold myself into is my original self.
Just original plan ol’ Mari with ugly hands and beat up runners toes and who falls too often and who loves her friends and who is scared of being a lone and even more scared of forgetting herself. I would rather not be clay at the end of the day I think.
I did the Jingle Bell Jog this Saturday morning, it was interesting in the fact that normally I’m doing races in Central Park but this one was in Prospect. It was short. Just 4 miles. I’m not used to running in Prospect park but I do enjoy it.
About 2 and a half miles in, while listening to Christmas music on Spotify and thinking to myself how good I felt, I noticed that my shoe had become untied. With out thinking or looking I jumped out of the race to the left in front of a high sped bicyclist, making her scream out loud as she tried to unsuccessfully swerve out of the way. We collided. She fell off her bike as my knee made hard contact with the front of her wheel.
I was mortified and she was not happy. I immediately started to apologize loudly and close to tears. I’m so sorry, it was all my fault. I’m so sorry. I wasn’t looking it was all my fault.
She was fine I kept running but everything had changed. The morning, which started off as a cool, charming New York winter morning suddenly seemed bare, just a sea of naked twigs and sticks, slick leaves lurking in places you didn’t expect waiting to fail you, make you slip and ruin your ankles. I suddenly hated that stupid race. People all dressed up in their ugly sweaters and Santa hats jogging with their stupid smiles on their faces. This is running! You aren’t supposed to be happy! Stop laughing! What the fuck! I hate you all! You’re all fucking sheep!
I finished at a good time. I was pissed. After meeting someone for coffee I shrugged to the G train.
So lady who I jumped in front of your bike, if you’re reading this:
"I love you. I love being around you. I just dont trust you"
She turned to him, cold, biter, sad and desperate… all things she hated being, one of them she had never been before, she asked a simple. “Do you want to be with me?”
Because that’s all it really comes down to, right? Forget sex, attraction, trust issues, status… it comes down to a simple yes or no of “Do you want to be with me?”
He looked at her. Then looked down.
There was nothing else to say, so she looked at him, nodded, choked out a weak “right.” and walked away. And hasn’t stopped walking since.
There isnt much left to write. I’ve been single but not single for almost 6 months now. And for the first time ever I’m angry. I’m angry with him. I’ve never been so angry with anyone before. I may have deserved all of this but I can’t wait until he gets what he deserves. But at the same time why do I keep sleeping on my own couch in my own apartment because the idea of being alone in my own queen sized bed in a large one bedroom shared by just one is sad enough to make me wonder if moving to alaska might be better?
What are you doing new year’s eve? Man. Fuck that song. Fuck the holidays. Screw this christmas tree and forget this nat king cole christmast pandora station
I started running in the 7th grade. I have no idea who or what convinced me that joining cross country was a good idea in the 7th grade. I’m sure it had something to do with the fact that all my girl friends were going to do it, or more honestly, there was probably a boy involved. For whatever reason though, I started my running then. I loved it. I loved the practices in the fall. The way the school grounds looked after everyone had left for the day, running through the trails and woods with my girl friends. The cold morning meets too excited and nervous to eat. Toeing the starting line waiting for the gun to go off. Pushing ourselves so much to get through the 3 miles we would sometimes burst into tears when it finished. I was hooked.
I ran cross country all through out the rest of middle school and high school. Into my first and only semester of college. I stopped running during the lowest point of my life. After I got kicked out of school and when I fell deep into depression. I’m not sure which came first, the depression that lead to me not running anymore or not running leading into my depression. After I returned home and lived with my parents again I didn’t run at all. I worked behind a desk, went to beauty school in the afternoon into the night and then worked as a hostess at IHOP from 10 to 1 in the morning. I gained weight, I turned weak. I look at photos of myself back then and I barely recognize myself. Even after moving to the city I was too busy trying drugs and whiskeys to get up in the morning and run through the streets of Queens.
Then slowly, and I mean very very slowly, I started to get up in the morning and run again. At first I could barely make it 2 miles. Then slowly it moved up to 3 then 4 then 6. I started my career in a job that I felt a strong connection with. I watched the shop open and grow and expand and so did my love for running. I January I was fired for reasons I still don’t know and that’s when I started running races for the first time since high school. It became an obsession. Any 5k or 10k or 15k in central park in the cold Saturday and Sunday mornings made the grief of losing my job easier. I was angry so I ran. I slowly moved up to half marathons all the while carrying my anger. Running started to mean more to me that just running.
Though my pace, and distance and structure was constantly changing and the finish lines were spread through out all over the city, there was one thing that I could always relay on the fact that there would be the same loving face waiting for me at the finish line. Between my growing relationship with him and my growing relationship with running, I was starting to feel whole again. I signed up for the New York Marathon. It represented to me this year ending and a new start. Things where going to get better. Finally going to get better.
Things end, I was stupid to think that things wouldn’t. But the Marathon is less that 2 weeks away and the build up to what this race means to me feels muddled because I won’t see that face at the finish line. I’m a bit at a loss in my life. I’ve built this race up in my head to represent everything I’ve struggled through and the demons I would finally put to rest at the end. But at this point, I have no idea what or who I’m running to anymore.
I guess its going to be to myself. I’ve never crossed a finish line to just see myself before. But I guess there is no better time to start. I have no other choice. I’m having a hard time finding the strength and motivation to finish this race. The thought of it is making my throat tight and eyes sting. But I guess I have no other choice. I suppose this is a big life lesson. You’ve got to keep running.
And just for a disclosure I’m sorry this blog is super sad and only about running now. I swear its a phase.
24 DAYS TILL COMPLETE LOSS OF BOWEL MOVEMENTS AND LOSS OF TOE NAILS
It 24 days till the NYC marathon. I’ve never ran a marathon before. The summer was depressing. And hot. Hot and depressing. I haven’t been training as much as I would like. I’m scared that I won’t be able to finish this 26.2 mile race.
Where have you been all summer?? How come you never update anymore?? You ok????
Woah woah woah, its ok calm down buddy. I’m here, I’m ok. I just haven’t had anything really to say and have been coping with some personal stuff that I feel like a pre teen blarging on the internet about. I have been confused, lonely and depressed and normally when I get like that I tend to turn into a hermit unless forced to do other wise. Buts its fine its what I do. I recognize that its what I do. Lots of solo weekend trips to see my family or out of town friends, lots of wondering my neighborhood, trying to focus on my work, and trying to get back into running which seems to be the only thing that is giving me clarity at the moment.
But this too will pass and if anyone needs me I’m normally trying to find catan partners or I’m drinking at my regular waterhole and talking about feels.
But thank you for noticing and checking in, anon.
EDIT: if you are really interested in a more day to day update, I have an instagram (whiskeyandgoatsmilk) and a twitter (howdymari) feel free to add.
I remember being I think 14 or 15 years old and my CoOl older cousin took me to an Ani Difranco concert. It was exciting, exhilarating and terrifying. I remember looking up at two girls with hairy arm pits making out during most of the concert. I thought that BO smell was just the smell of being a cool college chick.
I remember being a typical 15 year old with glasses and short hair and listening to this song on repeat on the boom box that skipped while trying to tape record the Daria the Musical special off of late night MTV with the crappy VCR in the basement. I remember being in love with a senior with an eye brown ring who started dating the most beautiful girl in my class and thinking that things were never going to get better but at least I had cool trendy music tastes that was poetic and that older college women listened to. At least I had that going for me.
13 years later I’m listening to it now and strangely feeling just as lonely, ugly and awkward as i was at 15. Except I don’t feel as cool as before.
I'm really inspired by your motivation to maintain a healthy running routine. I used to run cross country growing up, but quit after high school. I'm really eager to get back into it again, but am unsure of where to start because I'm fearful of overdoing it (knee troubles). Do you have any suggestions for how to ease back into it?
Start slow. Don’t figure out your pace or how long you’ve been running, stop when you feel like stopping and walk. Start running again when it passes. Keep doing that and hate yourself enough to want to change because you love yourself. And Just. Get. Up. And. Go. No excuses. The hardest step is the first one out of the door.
Its 730 in the morning and I’ve been up for three hours.
My little cousin is flying in this morning so that we could road trip to Syracuse tomorrow afternoon for my cousin’s wedding this weekend. I have hoped that by this point things would “settle” but I’m starting to realize that things never “settle” Things just continuously evolve and I suppose being an adult is just struggling to keep your head afloat.
It has been a very hard summer. Its been an emotionally draining summer. Its been an emotionally draining year. I haven’t been updating much due to it. I try not to talk too much about my personal issues on here mostly because it goes enough inside my head, its not very fair to put it out there.
But I am unhappy. I’m happy that I can admit it. Its hard to admit.
I just returned from England on Monday after seeing my very old and failing grandmother. She was born in Burma and has suffered through things that I can’t even begin to imagine. Fleeing her country during a war, watching her brothers and parents die in the jungle while they tried to escape to safer grounds, care taking 4 other sisters on her own….
I was happy I got to see her one last time. But it was heart breaking to say goodbye. This grown woman who raised two kids the best she could in a country that treated her like an alien, who watched her husband pass away suddenly and has come to terms with having distance between us, was sobbing so uncontrollably as I said my final farewell the day before my flight back to the states that it has left me shell shocked and baffled. I have no idea what my life has in store for me but I pray to Athena that I take it as strong and with as much grace as my Grandma Mari. I am not really worthy to share the same name as her. She has left me here at 730 am on a Thursday stunned and bewildered. God bless that bitch
Oh well. I always feel like you know for the two minutes we talk. The ego on me!! Anyway - happy belated birthday. You're far more beautiful today than 4 years ago (from YouTube clips I've seen) ha! Stay classy