Posts Tagged ‘arcade’

Here It Comes

August 20, 2019

I have two days left before I head down to Pacifica and step back into my PhD life.

Not that I haven’t already been in it.

Yesterday was a shit storm of homework, talking about the work, thinking about the work, reading, writing, posting to Canvas, the platform my online work is on, and feeling way too fucking anxious for my own good.

Seriously.

I had forgotten that ever present, low lying level of anxiety that being in school and working full time gives me.

I had a phone call with a friend in my cohort to talk about some collaborative processes regarding school and a proposal that we have to have done to present at the intensive and I just got bonkers.

I realized, yet again, that I was already behind the ball.

Thanks brain, nothing like making yourself feel bad after a really extraordinary Saturday.

More on that in a moment.

I tried to talk myself in from the ledge and I did ok, but reading and re-reading the syllabi made my stomach flip.

As once again I face the prospect of having to be in zoom meetings on days and times that I cannot as I will be working or seeing a therapy client.

And why?

WHY!?!

Are my electives more fucking work than my required course work?

Shit.

I was totally taken aback at my electives coursework.

Ugh.

I am not complaining, well, a little.

I just get the overwhelms.

And I know this feeling.

I have had it every semester.

I have had it every semester of my Master’s program and yes, for both the semesters in my first year of my PhD coursework.

And inevitably I find the time, it appears, like magic, a sloop on the sea back lit with moon light, and there is the path and I don’t really know how, but it all gets done.

It always does.

So.

I tried to reason a tiny bit with myself that this would be the same thing too and like every semester some weirdo shit happens with my financial aid, this year was no different, but things get worked out, as they did this year as well.

Everything gets worked out.

And.

If I don’t get A’s I’ll be alright.

I mean.

I’m going to fucking get A’s because that’s what I do and because I am a damn good writer.

Not that one can always tell from the writing in my blogs, but I do believe I am a good writer.

Not great, I won’t call what I do that, but good.

I am solid.

I am fluid.

I have good ideas.

I have poetic turns.

I have way with words, have I.

And I have a sense that I will have more time this semester than I did last year.

My work is transitioning.

Boy fucking howdy is it transitioning.

I had a pricking in my thumbs all last week that there was a conversation that needed to happen with the mom at work and I finally had the opportunity to address it and yes, my schedule is changing.

CHANGING.

I’m going to go down to three days a week come the third week in September, basically in a month, I will only be nannying three days a week.

And.

I will continue to transition down every time I pick up a client.

Which I did yesterday.

I am now at 18 clients.

I need two more to cover the costs of losing the nanny hours, but I suspect that I will secure them by the time I go down to three days a week.

And I need five more clients after that, I think, if I have done the math right, to be fully self-sustaining as a therapist.

That would be 25.

I want 30 though and possibly a few more.

As.

Well.

Clients cancel.

Things happen, stuff comes up at work, vacations, sick days, etc.

I need to have a buffer and account for that.

But even then.

When I think about it, when I let myself dream and drift a little, 30-35 clients, why, shit, that’s 10 hours a week less then I was working first semester of my PhD program last year.

I went into the program working 42-45 hours a week–as a nanny, I’m not including hours that I was seeing clients or doing group supervision and training with my agency.

At one point right at the beginning of the second semester I was working about 60 hours of work between the two and doing my PhD work, no wonder I felt crazed by the end of the semester.

And thankfully.

Second semester saw me drop down to 40 towards the end of the semester and then around the beginning of the summer 35 and then two weeks ago 30 and I’m staring down 20 hours when the transition happens.  The two older kids will be back in school and the family secured a daycare spot for the littlest guy.

20 hours of nanny work.

Actually that’s not even true, more like 18 since I picked up a client yesterday.

18 hours of nannying.

I mean.

I cannot even believe that.

I have been nannying for 12 1/2 years.

Thirteen maybe.

I am never quite sure about the number.

A long fucking time, how about that.

I really thought at one point that I would never not be a nanny and there was some self-esteem stuff tied up with that.

I had judgements about what I did as a profession.

I mean.

Who takes a nanny seriously?

Despite the enormous amount of work it takes to be a nanny, it is not seen as a credible career in Western society.

I have worked my ass off, however, as a nanny, and I can ascertain that most nannies do.

Not all of them.

I have seen some pretty lax shit happen in the parks, but it’s a damn lot of work.

It can also have the appearance of being fun and games all the time, going out to ice cream, going to parks, taking the monkeys to an arcade–got to do that today, me and the eldest hit up Free Gold Watch in the Haight, singing, taking long walks, being outside, playtime, nap time.

But it is work.

Work to stay present and balanced and even keeled when there’s crazy happening, when there’s screaming tantrums, when there’s diapers and vomit and sick kids or crazed sugar mania happening.

Work.

A lot of work.

And love.

Don’t get me wrong, there is so much love.

And.

I am done with it.

I have done it long enough.

I have paid my dues.

I can see the light at the end of the nanny tunnel and though I am a little afraid to go into the light.

(Don’t go into the light Carol Anne!)

Go I shall.

We strength and grace and assuredness that I will be held financially and be full self-supporting as a therapist.

I know I will.

I have extended office hours, I have rented extra office space, I have built it.

They will come.

Oh yes they will.

And the faster they come, the sooner I am done nannying.

Ooh la la.

Now.

Just to get through the anxiety of starting up school again.

Life.

It just keeps going.

It really does.

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That Was Fun

March 19, 2017

And it didn’t kill me.

It was just tacos.

And I don’t like tacos.

But.

I went anyway.

I know, did you read that, I don’t like tacos.

Who doesn’t like tacos for fucks sake?

I love tacos, people, love them, rub those greasy soft tortilla wrap things all over my naked body, smear me with guacamole and sour cream, drape me in cheese.

And then watch me binge out on all the other things that I would be eating if I decided to eat something that I refrain from for my abstinence.

I was laughing with a friend.

Like anything with sugar.

“You can’t just have one piece?”

(or one beer or one shot or one line)

No.

Chocolate cake would eventually go something like this–one piece of chocolate cake, becomes two pieces, becomes, let’s eat the whole damn thing, and have a big glass of milk and since nothing is better after a “meal” let’s have a cigarette and fuck since I’m smoking I might as well have a cocktail and if I’m going to have a cocktail let’s call my dealer and get a bag of blow.

And.

Well.

There it is.

Chocolate cake equals cocaine.

You think I jest.

But that is my truth.

So no tacos for me.

I had the taco salad without the taco.

Fuck.

I had Mexican food twice today, that was not planned.

Much of today was not planned, on purpose, I wanted to leave some space to be free to actually have a day off and be flexible.

I did get up and do yoga, my arms are a little sore, but not too bad.

I had a nice leisurely breakfast and took a hot shower and went to meet up with my person and do the deal and cry a bit about being overwhelmed with the internship stuff and school and practicum and stuff and life.

She slowed me down, and really helped me get into the present, into today, into the joy of living and admonished me to have fun, which she actually does a lot now that I am thinking about it, she often tells me to have fun, and I decided to take her suggestion and see if I could have fun.

It wasn’t always easy today, I can get stuck trying to make things happen, but I just tried to let myself go with the flow and show up where I was supposed to be and after that see what happens.

What happened was a nice lunch, a manicure and a pedicure and then a scooter ride over to Waller and Stanyan to Free Gold Watch to play pinball.

I actually got sore wrists from playing.

Hehe.

Does any one get carpal tunnel syndrome from pinball?

I might have today.

I played my favorite, The Addams Family, and also I played The Twilight Zone a lot.

Then I zipped over to Turk and Divisadero, got right with God, made a confession at group level about being wildly adverse to fellowship and needing to do it and supposedly having to have fun and I don’t want to eat tacos.

And I got merry hell from my friends and ended up going out to some taqueria on Divisadero with a crew of people and hanging out until there was no one left to hang out with.

Got to love it when I take suggestions.

I don’t regret them ever.

Oh, sure it’s uncomfortable, social stuff is, being vulnerable, letting people see you, but I have community and as I do ramp up with all the school stuff I really am trying to keep my toe in the pool, maybe even sit on the steps and get a little submerged.

I remind myself, hey you, you like to swim, don’t be afraid.

And I will be afraid and that’s ok, but I don’t have to let the fear run the show.

It did a lot early in the week when I was freaking out about my schedule and meeting with my site director and setting up what my internship was going to look like.

I was anxious and in so much fear.

It was unnecessary, it was unpleasant and I just got spun out.

Anxiety is useless.

It’s worrying about the future and trying to worry so hard that I have all the fretting out-of-the-way before the actual event happens as a way to control the uncertainty of the event.

I want to be in control because if I don’t know what’s going to happen, something really bad might happen.

So I find myself pre-emptive and I fret.

God, how I fret.

And you wonder how it was that I was diagnosed with clinical anxiety ten years ago.

Yeah.

I had no clue that was what was going on with me.

It’s always been there, I just hadn’t the vocabulary to describe what was happening, or the knowledge that it wasn’t normal, or that there were things I could do to alleviate it.

Or that, I don’t know the horrific shit show of things that happened to me as a child were traumatic and might have long-lasting effects, like, um, I don’t know, being scared to be out of control of my environment because something bad this was coming.

Anxiety?

Nope.

Not me.

Bwahahahahaaha.

Fuck.

Grad school has definitely stirred that pot, from working with the stuff that comes up for me, working through a lot of it, processing, training myself, learning how to deal with my emotions, finding things that stir me up, realizing how things land in my body and how my body is affected.

All sorts of things.

I am super grateful for all the things and the getting to work through them and not have “death by tacos” and hanging out and getting connected with a group of pretty awesome, talented, kind, cool, smart folks.

In other words.

I had fun.

Mission accomplished.

 

LETS GO HARDER!

February 17, 2014

He shouted in my ear.

I smiled and danced away.

Twirled away, closed my eyes and watched the music smash against my eyelids.

The gentleman, it was his birthday, then approached my darling friend Bonne, “let’s go harder!”

“Let’s just pace ourselves,” said Bonne and smiled.

Bahahahahaha.

This from a lady who had a bowl of chicken soup before the dance-a-thon and the previous response not a response from the little old lady with bad knees who had a cup of herbal tea at a cafe before meeting up with my friend to go to the End Up.

Oh yes, that bastion of drugs, house music, and late night parties all San Franciscan.

The End Up serving San Francisco’s after hour scene since 1973.

The End Up

The End Up

Where I have ended up frequently in the past, but not so much in the last few years.

The idea to go was Bonne’s a few weeks back she texted me and another lady friend who had cut a rug, literally, at a house party back in December and we had all vowed that we would find time to do this thing called dancing once again.

And we did.

I still cannot believe that we did.

We got there at 9p.m.

“You ladies are the first ones here.”

The bouncer said checking out ids and bags, no drugs here sir, promise.

Not even any caffeine.

Well, not for me anyway, my friend had gone over to the Shell Station across the street and scored a Red Bull.

Oh, back in the day.

I have bought cigarettes there, gum, Red Bull, and most importantly, sunglasses.

Yup.

Nothing better than rolling, literally and figuratively out of the End Up into the bright morning sun.

Our birthday friend was sporting his sunglasses inside.

At 10 o’clock at night.

I had almost talked myself out of going out tonight.

But I didn’t want to disappoint my friend and in an effort to get out and do things, I had said to a number of folks, that yes, I will take your suggestion and have some fun.

I had fun today.

I did.

I slept until 9:30 a.m.

That is fun and quite unusual for me.

I took the morning easy, mellow, slow.

Wrote.

Ate breakfast.

Meditated.

Then took a bike ride along the ocean.

When I came back for lunch the back yard was calling my name, so I ate lunch al fresco, ensconced in an Adirondack chair facing into the sun and read my book.

Then I drank some tea and sat outside for almost an hour reading.

When I finished my book I did the unthinkable.

I had a nap.

Craziness!

I napped on a Sunday.

I am surprised the word did not come crashing to an end.

After the luxurious 45 minutes of snoozing I had in the middle of the afternoon, I rode my bicycle up to Cole Valley and dealt with my playa bike that has been needing attention since, well, since I was at Burning Man in, uh, September.

I got it over to American Cyclery and the owner happily took her in.

He even tagged it for his own private project.

I was actually quite flattered.

It was sweet.

I had a bit of time on my hands and ducked into Free Gold Watch.

Pinball!

Free Gold Watch

Free Gold Watch

The Machine

Bride of Pin Bot

Play Boy

Play Boy Pinball

I have walked past Free Gold Watch a number of times on Waller Street, but never actually went in.

I had been under the impression that they were just a t-shirt printing shop, not really an arcade.  But arcade they are.

They even had a Ms. Pacman.

I played The Machine for a while, getting back into my groove from so long ago when I used to play pinball down at Challenges on State Street in Madison.

I dated a manager there and knew loads of the guys running the place.

In fact, I believe I dated two guys that used to work there.

Yeah, I just admitted that I dated arcade dorks.

Fuck off.

They were both cute though, in their little brown polyester pants and striped referee shirts.

Sigh.

Oh, memories.

The Ms. Pacman cracked me up too, I noticed as I was dropping a quarter into the slot, the sticker that says, “she swallows!”

Holy crow, batman, what the hell.

I have never seen that before, but it was original signage on the game.

Ha.

She swallows indeed.

I spent about an hour playing games then headed off to Church and Market for my commitment, after that, a cup of tea at Church Street Cafe.

Because, yeah, that’s what I do before going out dancing, I have some herbal tea.

Bonne laughed at me when she came to the cafe and saw me all curled up in a big leather chair with my tea and the newspaper.

“You look so cozy.”

Indeed, I felt cozy and I did not feel much like getting up, but I did, I did and I rallied and we went.

She caught a cab and I rode my trusty steed down to 6th and Harrison.

I thought it would be amusing to take some shots of my bike while I was there.

The Whip

The whip

I was given lighting instruction by a man with a very large parrot on his shoulder who was bouncing along to the music seeping through the door and smoking a cigarette at the curb.

We had a fun little chat and then it was time to go in.

The music was great, but much to both our chagrin, the coat check was closed down for the night.

Fortunately it was not as busy as either one of us had suspected it would be and we were able to keep an eye on our things.

Feck.

I had my messenger bag with me, I was not about to let that out of my sight.

All our things stayed on the dance floor, occasionally nudged out-of-the-way of the birthday boy or the two Asian couples that were so obviously on E it was adorable to watch.

I mean, at one point the four of them were all in a circle holding hands and swaying to the music.

It was really too cute.

Addled, absolutely, but sweetly so.

Bonne and I also had us a little photo shoot, because, come on, why not?

We’re at the End Up and we are not drinking or going HARD, we are just dancing and smiling and hugging and having an awesome time getting down to some old school House music.

We played tourist at the End Up.

It was hysterical.

Bon Bon

Bon Bon

41 at the End Up

Three Day Weekend Work it Out

Water Fall/End UP

The Famous Water Fall

I remember once meeting a woman who was 40 and she went dancing every weekend at the End Up and it was her life and her exercise and her all.

“Shoot me dead,” I told a friend, “if I am ever 40 and still dancing at the End Up.”

Well, lucky for me, tonight I was 41.

Ha.

Never say never.

And as the morning winds its way into the wee hours just before dawn, I think, I am really lucky to have such a good girlfriend and such an awesome experience.

Really lucky.

And to then hop on my bike and cut through the crisp night air, plunge through pockets of cold magnolia blooms scenting the air in the Upper Haight, to the spice of eucalyptus in the Pan Handle, and the fresh pine evergreens as I flew, really, there was no traffic, down the center of Lincoln Avenue, and turn my steed faithfully home.

Because, yes Virginia.

Fun was officially had.


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