Tuesday, January 31, 2012


Author's note: As always, I questioned my choice. As always, life provided my answer. Now to move forward...

Went to a local bar last night to catch a show.
The bar was packed, and my friend and I must've been obvious in our attempts to find a table, because we soon found ourselves the objects of a spirited wave from a stranger.

"Over here!" he said. "Y'all can sit with us."

Dave, as I will call him, was sitting with what I presumed to be his wife. I'll call her Wendy.

They were an attractive couple--mid 40s, my guess--all smiles. Wendy had what appeared to be a Long Island Iced Tea in front of her. Dave had two.

From the moment my friend and I sat down, it was apparent that Dave was "the good time guy." He jumped right in. "Where you from? What do you do? You here for the show?"


He lead off with jokes.

For her part, Wendy lead with this: she was speaking to me. "I noticed you when you walked in. I said to Dave, 'Look at her. She looks just as out of place here as I do.'" She laughed.

I scanned her face. Pretty. Kind. An ally. I smiled at her.


The conversation moved easily, with Dave and my friend bantering, laughing. Wendy and I chiming in on occasion. Comfortable.

Turns out Dave and Wendy were small town folks. Met in high school. Reconnected years later.

"When I met Wendy, she was your size," Dave joked, looking at me. "She sure ain't now."

I guessed Wendy to be a size 8. She said she wasn't.

"I haven't ever been her size," Wendy said.

She smiled. Her eyes didn't.


Dave had been the "good ol' boy" in high school. Drinking, smoking, the class clown. "I was the goody two shoes," Wendy said. "We never would have dated in school."

"Lucky, then, that the two of you found each other," I said.

Wendy agreed.

Dave said he wouldn't be lonely either way.

"Plenty of opportunities," he said.


I had already eaten one dinner, but had it in my head that I was going to have another. I asked after the waitress.

Dave answered.

"Oh Janet? She's great. She'll be back 'round in a minute. She's got that 'emo thing' going on, you know? I wonder what she looks like with the lights on."

Dave spoke as if he had known Janet for years. They had only met that evening.

Janet came around a minute later--late 20s, leggy, with black rimmed glasses and black hair done up in a 50s throw-back style.

Dave ordered another drink.

Janet turned to Wendy. "Would you like another Long Island?"

"Yes, she does." Dave said.

Wendy, still smiling, said nothing.

"She's hot," Dave said. He turned to watch Janet as she walked away.

The movement made the cross on his necklace flick back and forth.

"I'm gonna get wasted tonight," Dave said.


The bar continued to fill with both people and cigarette smoke.
It became more difficult to hear over the din.

Dave rose to the challenge, speaking over the ruckus about his job, and a test he had to take in the morning to receive his certification. He was to take his test at 8 a.m.

My food arrived. Dave ordered another drink. My barbecue sandwich spurred conversation about back yard barbecues. Dave said he hosts them for his friends all the time.

Wendy checked her phone. "They're almost here," she said. Dave and Wendy had a group coming.

"Can't wait 'til they get here," Dave said. "I want a cigarette."


Wendy explained that Dave had quit. New Year's resolution.

"He said he wanted to live healthier," Wendy said. "He hasn't had a cigarette since."

She smiled. She touched his arm. She looked into Dave's eyes.

Dave looked away.


Wendy's two friends, also mid 40s, arrived with what I assumed to be their husbands. The girls got drinks and came to the table. The boys went to the bar.


Wendy's friends were good time girls. Extroverted, sociable, pretty. They drank their cocktails and lit their cigarettes. They laughed a lot and occasionally referenced their significant others at the bar.

"I'm starving," said Betty.

"Let's get the waitress," said Veronica.

Janet came and the girls ordered more drinks and Irish nachos--a tomato, cheese and jalapeno concoction served over tater tots.

Janet left and Betty lit up.

"So where are y'all from?," Betty asked.

She turned to me. As she did so, her face, previously in shadow, was illuminated by the low table light.

Betty had bags under her eyes. And wrinkles. She had a youthful haircut, outfit and energy, but in the lamp light, she looked older than her age.

She sat back again. The darkness granted her 5 to 10 years.


The nachos came and the girls dug in. Dave returned from the bar. He winked at Betty. He bummed a cigarette from Veronica.

I looked at Wendy.

"This is the last one, right?" she asked.

Betty and Veronica laughed. Dave said nothing.

The group rose to go outside to smoke, leaving me, my friend, Wendy and the nachos.

"I hate cigarette smoke," Wendy said when they had gone.

I couldn't tell if she was talking to me or herself.


Wendy turned back to my friend and me.

The smile returned to her face.

A decision.

"The show's going to start soon. I should go outside and join my friends," she said.

She stood to leave. She turned back to the table. "See you inside?"

Again, a smile.


I scanned the bar. Dark, smoky, loud.

I had never been to this location before, but knew this place.


"Look at her. She looks just as out of place here as I do."


Wendy made her choice, and I made mine.

Wendy and the good time girls went in to the concert.

I went home.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Isn't that nice

Growing up I was always told that being nice to people was the way to make friends.
Every person of authority--parents, teachers, neighbors, church leaders--all practically bludgeoned me over the head with the same message: be nice and you will have lots of friends. Be nice and everyone will like you. Be nice and no matter what happens, good things will happen to you.

So imagine my confusion when I first stepped out of the safety of the nest and into the clutches of the real world (or, as you may call it, elementary school.)

Kindergarten in the bowels of Blackwell Elementary School. Miss O'Dell's class. Wee Erin, a new Blackwell Bee, (or Blackwell Bear. We had two mascots. Yeah. Like LSU we were.) dressed in her 5 year old finest, is seated at a table, being nice. Her hair is in a ponytail. Her heart is on her pink sleeve. Her feverish brain repeating only one thought: "I want that guy with the red hair sitting net to me to be my friend. And how do I make friends? I know! I should be nice."

So I introduced myself. And, to my astonished delight, the boy was nice.

"This is going swimmingly!," I thought as I continued what was turning into a very nice conversation. "I should do this all the time! This making friends thing is easy! At this rate, I shall be friends with every Blackwell Bee and Bear before lunchtime!"

So caught up was I in my reverie, that it took Miss O'Dell two tries to get my attention.

"Erin, is that you talking?"

"Yes ma'am."

"Put your head down on your desk and be silent."


Face flush with embarrassment, brows knit in confusion, I dropped my head on my desk--a low thunk barely audible over the snickers of the class. And, like any nice student, I contemplated what I had done.

Too young to undertand why it was a cardinal sin to talk during Miss O'Dell's presentation of The Letter People, I had innocently but none the less crossed a before unrealized boundary--an addendum to the "be nice" rule. Be nice, sure, but not while someone important is talking.

Duly noted. Logged away. Won't make that mistake again.

Days and weeks and months passed, and I held fast to what I had learned. I WAS NICE. To everyone I met. So long as someone important wasn't talking. And teachers loved me.

But the kids...?

Turns out, the kids loved designer clothes and Hello Kitty Boxes. Therefore, if you had designer clothes and Hello Kitty Boxes, you were their friend.

I did not wear designer clothes.

I did not have a Hello Kitty Box.

But surely these handicaps could be overcome! Surely my parents and my teachers and that creepy guy on the street who SWORE he was nice and offered me some candy--surely all of these authority figures would not steer me awry. So, I did what I always did. I was NICE.

In my second grade class, the epitome of beauty and popularity was Amy Dennis. EVERYONE wanted to be friends with Amy Dennis. Amy had the best clothes. Amy held the market on Hello Kitty. Amy's mom crimped her hair everyday. Amy had white Keds with ruffle socks.

I had none of these things.

Watching Amy Dennis from across the room--longing to be her friend, to hang out at her house and play with her Sanrio treasures and maybe, just maybe, have her mom crimp my hair too--I took out a pen and began to write.

I wrote her a poem.

More than one.


Maybe even one for every day we were in class together.

And I gave them to her. Hid them in her desk when she left for recess so she would have them. I never signed them. And, even at age 8 or whatever you are in the second grade, I had the foresight to change my handwriting in the event she might know it was me.

Aside from perhaps David Bowie, Amy Dennis was the first love of my life.

And we never became friends.

After second grade I moved. New county. New school. One mascot.

And things got better.

Cherokee was more rural. And more poor. The children here did not wear designer clothes or care a fig about Kerokerokeroppi. Kids here were nice.

Before I knew it I was making friends. Lots of them. Nearly every student in my class. And, much to my young relief, my faith in the Golden Rule was renewed. Perhaps that previous place--that place with money and things and beautiful people was an oddity; an exception to the rule. Perhaps I was really safe here.

Turns out, Cherokee County was just a couple of years behind.

In 4th grade, people started paying attention to the clothes I wore. And no matter how nice I was to everybody, they seemed to judge me--to disapprove of me. So I fought back the only way I knew how--the way I had witnessed at Blackwell. I made a cognizant decision right there in Miss Burke's 4th grade classroom: "Fuck nice. I'm going to be popular!"

If I couldn't have a lot of friends, I would have an entourage. And, unfortunately for the children at Chapman Elementary School, I was smarter than almost all of them. Which meant all manner of not nice things.

I landed the coveted lead in "Romeo and Juliet" that year--my first role ever on the stage. Later in life, I would come to realize the lasting effects this would have on who I would become--but at the time, it sufficed that I staked my station as the most popular girl in class by beating out the formerly most popular girl for the role. In a display of what can only be called in retrospect "brass balls," I then told said girl she could play the narrator. The role I had chosen for her. The class--which determined by vote who would play what role--then voted her into the narrator spot. Had my smile not been missing some teeth at the time (tooth fairy and whatnot), I am sure it would have been sinister.

Aware of my position as a criminal mastermind, I started being the opposite of nice.

Like Hitler before me, my proverbial rejection from art school was the jumping off point of my psychosis, and I began forming my 4th grade SS. Hair pulling, insults and sabotage ensued. By 5th grade, no one would dare mess with me as doing so would result in guaranteed social leprosy.

This was the time when I used my wit and influence to make other children cry. A time when I, with my Ginsu tongue, would slice right through the other kids' expensive Hypercolor T-shirts to the raw of their delicate, frangible souls. As Paul Muad Dib so powerfully realized, "My name [was] a killing word," and I was taking no prisoners.

By 6th grade my game was catching up with me. Other children were picking up on the lessons I was teaching them: namely that nice wouldn't get you anywhere in this crazy, fucked up world. To rise to the top, you had to be the meanest, most conniving SOB on your 6th grade team. And that mantle now fell to my "best friend."

Seems the rumor mill of 6th grade decided to tell said friend that I was attempting to snag her boyfriend.

I wasn't.

Not that the truth matters.

So she started a rumor about me.

And the only thing to spread more readily than plague germs in an elementary school is a rumor. And this was a doozy. Step right up everyone and stare! Erin Greer IS A LESBIAN!

Now before I continue further, let me say that, ironically, this one particular girl was the only one who had managed to secure my genuine allegiance to this point. She was the one person I actually would not cross--and not because I was afraid, but because I sincerely considered her a true friend. But I guess none of that mattered in the face of who would date the coveted Michael Knight.

The very essence of popularity is eliminating a threat. And I guess I was less of a "threat" as a lesbian.


Not only that the rumor caught on, but that it backfired. I actually became MORE popular following the incident. The number of invites to social events and parties spiked. I couldn't leave the building without being pursued by a flood of onlookers and admirers. And if THAT isn't a life lesson, then I don't know what is.

I should have been blissful at this turn of events. Thing is, though, the increased popularity no longer had the same taste. It no longer held the same power. For the first time--and for reasons unknown to me--I was viewing myself outside of myself...and taking a hard look at these other people.

I didn't like what I saw.

So fucking terrified were we all of each other, that we were willing to tear each other to smithereens just to distract the masses from seeing our own scars. And beneath it all--the designer clothes, our parents' money, the cutest hairdos and bookbags, the cutting insults--we were all hideous. Monsters in pretty dresses.

We were mean.

And I was unhappy about it.


It was a conscious decision, really. The decision to change.
I knew I had more "friends" as a dictator...but with friends such as these...well, it was just no longer what I wanted. I could have a following if I continued my Third Reich reign, but I liked myself better when I was nice.

So I dug the old Erin out of the closet. I dusted her off. I looked a little closer at her. I looked past her non-designer clothes and stick-straight hair. She wasn't my ideal, but I figured she was alright. I tried her back on for size.

Within months of my being nice, I was no longer popular. I no longer hung out on the popular side of the playground. I sat alone at the lunch table. I spent a lot of time alone on the swings.

But middle school was approaching. And with it, changes.

Not in the overall social order, per se. But in how I approached that social order.

I would enjoy middle school more than most other people I have encountered. And, while it had its battles, I enjoyed high school too. During these times, the arts provided me a voice, and people became drawn to me, not out of fear, but out of shared interests and talents. No following; just friends.


To this day, our world seems to cater to the mean. I can't tell you the number of times I have been stepped on, walked over and completely discarded because my attempts at "turning the other cheek" have been perceived as weakness instead of what they are: a cognizant choice. But I continue to make that choice. Not because I am better than you...but because I have been you, and I didn't like what I saw.

If the day comes and the situation warrants, I know I am smarter than you. I know I can cut you if I choose. After all, Ginsu knives are renowned for their continued sharpness. In our digital age, I can easily find where you live. Where you work. And make untold trouble for you.

I am no better than you because I have that in me.

But, I am different from you. And, luckily for the both of us, I am choosing to play nice.

Monday, January 23, 2012


Sometimes, nothing is more soul cleansing than an all-out, tantrum-esque, kicking, thrashing, rolling around on the hardwoods cry.

Something about it just soothes.

And lately, I've been needing one.


As an actress, one of my "claims to fame" is my ability to cry on command. Many have been baffled by it. Some awed. And when you put that Stanislavskian ability together with a natural penchant for tears (I well up over Disney commercials. Seriously, it's a mess.), one would think I have a built-in recipe for stress relief: cry it out, woman!

Cry. It. Out.

Trouble is, for the first time in my life, I cannot cry.

And this fact upsets me so much, I want to cry about it.

Truth is, friends, the recent years have been hard. Economic and family crises, sauteed with an unprecedented cacophony of life lessons and learning experiences, have left me apparently unable to return to my old standby of blubbering my way to happiness.

Life has deprived me of my ability to have a nervous breakdown.
And this, my friend, is how monsters are made.

Unable any longer to secure the much-needed release a good cry brings, I now stalk the city, completely devoid of feeling--wanting nothing, accomplishing nothing, faith in nothing. And while the mere thought of existing in this state would be enough to bring many to tears, I shrug it off. This is just the way of things. This is just me.

I may never feel again.


I recently watched an episode of "The Ricky Gervais Show" wherein Stephen Merchant tackled the inane "what would you do if you knew the world would blow up tomorrow" question. Stephen's answer? He would smash up a bar and strangle someone to death.

Ricky was appalled.

He asked Stephen why he would do such a thing, and Stephen answered that there would be no consequences and, as everyone was going to die in a few hours anyway, he would feel no remorse over grieving loved ones etc.

Well, I've always lived according to my gut. And my gut, dear friends, is telling me that today is, metaphorically speaking, my last day on earth.

Because, basically, I just don't give a fuck.

I have literally expended all of my feelings. I have none left.
I can no longer love you or despise you.
I can no longer fight for you or rail against you.
Hell, I can't even be bothered to concern myself with putting on real shoes (I've been in house slippers for days.)


I don't particularly care for feeling this way. But then again, I don't particularly care. Period.

And that, my friends, is sad.

Wish I could cry about it.

Sunday, January 22, 2012


This morning I came to a disturbing conclusion: I believe in a master race.

Now before you go burning your Greertopia flags or calling the APD to report suspicious activity (like that would get you anywhere anyway), allow me the opportunity to clarify:

*I do not believe in racial superiority.
*I do not believe in superiority of nationality or of thought process (though I AM right and you ARE wrong.)
*I do not believe in the superiority of one religion or of one sex or of one subgroup.

But I DO believe in high school, and, having watched "The Heathers" last night for the first time in my admittedly small life, I can tell you, with certainty, that we--every single, solitary one of us-- are still in it.

Still seated in the h.s. cafeteria of life, you and I and everyone else are multi-tasking: taking inventory of the who is wearing what, who is speaking to whom and gossiping about God knows what, all while ingesting some preprocessed mac-n-cheese and waiting for the bell to ring so we can finally get up, get out and get on with our lives.

Well, kids, sit tight, 'cause it ain't never gonna happen.

I know, I know. "Veronica [Erin], why are you pulling my dick? I mean, I've WAY moved on from high school. I have a job. And a husband/wife. And kids. Hell, I've even got a mortgage!"

And to you I say, "kudos." Now, shut your cake hole and sit your ass back at the band table, loser!

Because you and I both know that life's accomplishments will never elevate you from your place with the drama geeks to a spot on the cheerleading squad. There's a pecking order here, and everyone knows where they fall.

Face it, my friends, there IS a master race. You knew them in high school and you know them now. Bow down! Because if you don't, you might as well transfer to Washington. Transfer to Jefferson. Because no one at Westerberg is gonna let you play their reindeer games.

The popular people. That uber-class of superhuman that displays the rare combination of looks, prowess, brains, charm, fashion sense, charisma and an overly-developed sex and bitch factor that conveniently come without the guiding voice of a shoulder angel. Sure, not all members of the elite class exhibit all of these traits, but every card-carrying member displays at least two. And it's the combinations of the characteristics that make "popular" so difficult to readily define.

Much like pinpointing the meaning of life or justifying your brother's performance art, popularity appears to be defined by the person doing the beholding: fascinating, then, that though we (the populace) cannot seem to come to a consensus on the exact definition of popularity, we all concur on who's "in" and who's "out." And we behave accordingly.

I know where I stand. Or sit. My happy ass is at the arts table. Sure, I'm above YOU who are stuck sitting with the Math-letes, but I pay no attention to YOU, as I am entirely too busy vying for a seat with the Heathers. And I'd sell out my friends for a bunch of Swatch dogs and Diet Coke heads.

There was a time I thought I was above this. I like to think I once had a shoulder angel, or, at the very least, a singing cricket in a vest that would drag me away from Pleasure Island.

But I don't.

I'm guzzling booze and growing ears like a jackass just like the rest of you. Us. Them.

My identity seems to have become lost in the pronouns.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Erin Lindsey: Sexual Deviant

It remains my fervent hope to one day have a problem so perverse as to have a disorder named after me.
Sure, it will never be as clever and as catchy as, say, Marfans--but I at least hope to get a Wikipedia article out of the deal.

It'd be something simple. Likely sexual, as all disorders of a sexual nature are somehow more interesting.
Sad thing is though, seems most sexual predilections are already "taken"--at least any of the ones I can conceptualize.

There's already a name for blokes turned on by the idea of clowns. And amputees. And midgets. Furries anyone? (The drycleaning bill alone would dissuade me from the latter. And the premiere. Which really leaves only the midgets and amputees. Either way, though, I guess I could give it a go...You know. Open minded and all that.)

But to warrant the naming of a disorder, I'd have to come up with something no one has ever done the naughty with before--or at least not voiced in any public forum. Something like being aroused by a Trapper Keeper because you are attracted to the noise it makes. Which would actually be an auto-arousal response to all things velcro--meaning I could just as easily find you transfixed in the children's shoe isle of the Payless as in the retro school supply section of the neighborhood Goodwill. Still, no room in that disorder for an Erin Wiki entry.

No, to make it into the internet annals of fame, I'd have to come up with something truly original. Whatever that means.

I heard on a radio program once a prostitute describing her most unusual encounter with a John. Seems this particular individual was aroused by the idea of chewing cheese, and then expectorating this cheese on the prostitute's high heel shoe. There was no sex involved at all.

I have two problems with this: 1. I loathe cheese and adore shoes, and therefore cannot imagine how anyone, anywhere would be aroused by the desecration of one of life's greatest joys by the soggy mess of gnawed Domyati. 2. Why didn't I fucking think of this?

In my life, I have never been as interesting as the man who hires a professional to allow him to spew cheese on her Jimmy Choos. Seems I cannot even conceptualize of such an arrangement, much less enjoy it. By comparison, my most innovative ideas and purient interests seem banal. So perplexed am I by this that I cannot even bring myself to look up the proper spelling of "purient."

Dammit, I feel like a failure.

Surely there must be some unbridled desire--some perverse longing--hidden away in this Scotch Irish/Native American mut brain of mine. Surely I must want to somehow involve the ridges of an early Bob Dylan vinyl and the hide of a rare east-african iguana in my sexual regimen (Jesus Christ, I hope PETA doesn't find this post.) It's gotta be in here somewhere, doesn't it?

So my mission, dear readers, has become to discover and exploit my inner disfunction. And I will not stop until I have a disorder!

Wednesday, January 18, 2012


For the record--and not that anyone asked--I resent the hell outta my university's mandatory health insurance.

Like most things "mandatory," this coverage is expensive, ill-conceived and virtually useless. (Pearce & Pearce. Ever heard of 'em? NO? Neither have any of my doctors!)

I'd be better off financially with practically any other provider, and in the plus physically with Neosporin, alcohol swabs and my Butt-Ugly Martian bandaids.

Monday, January 16, 2012

This Is My Smug Face

Kiss it, bitches!

Sure, in the past certain forays into domesticity--placing a wet shirt in the microwave, for example--have proven disastrous, but tonight, dear friends, tonight I have conquered new realms!

Tonight I have blazed such trails as to subject Martha Stewart and her ilk to gnashing of teeth and sack cloth-renting status!


Sick and tired of hand washing and drying every tea cup, tablespoon and tupperware container, I (the aforementioned Erin L. Greer), decided I could stand it no longer!

So, armed with stockpiles of dirty dishes I clattered my way to the bathroom, where I proceeded to fill the porcelain tub with a bleach/water concoction guaranteed to kill the germs and clear the sinuses.

Crash, clank, bang!

In went my pottery.

I stood back and surveyed the scene.


Domestic. Goddess.

Mortals--bow the fuck down! The Master is in the room.

I'm telling you, friends, there were trumpets!

Content in my brilliance and more smug than I should be, I retreated to my room where I commenced to toss and turn in the bed and whine, nasal-like, to my sheets and my walls and my golden-age cinema posters that no one was present to observe the miracle which was currently occurring in the next room.

And then Jeremy showed up.

And I forgot all about it.

Three hours, a sumptuous dinner and a peach tobacco hookah later, I returned home and dressed for bed. My belly was full. My pants were too tight. My mind was hazy. As my father likes to say, it was "Bedtime for Bonzo," and this little monkey was ready to hit the sheets.

Until I went into the bathroom to wash my face.


Nearly knocked on my full-o-Turkish-delights ass by the super smell emanating from behind my sexy red shower curtain, my brain struggled through the fumes to piece together the olfactory puzzle.

"Fuck me, it's the dishes!"

The soaked-in-bleach-for-3-hours dishes...

Brow furrowed and body supported by the bathroom framework, I did what any domestic diva would do. I emptied the tub.

And then filled it back up with dish soap.

And then rinsed the dishes with the shower head.

Tub dishes--OWNED!

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Save Me Superman!

A friend of mine--we'll just call him "John From The Play"--(because, honestly, that's just what I call him anyway) once told me something so profound, I actually had the audacity to remember it.

He said, "I don't want to be party to any plan that involves the words 'This is for the good of mankind.'"

And I laughed.


John From The Play, you are a paragon among men!

The intention of the comment is obvious--that anything done for the good of many often requires a terrible sacrifice on the part of the few--but phrased as such (intentionally or no) the statement carries with it additional truths: namely, that this sacrifice is not so easily embraced by all and that human beings are, by nature, selfish, snively things with a built-in desire to save their own skins, humanity be damned!

And, actually, I like that.

We live in a country that heralds bravado. Cinematic blockbusters are rife with ordinary human beings (*ahem) doing extraordinary things to secure justice for those trampled by the rhinoceros of injustice. Everywhere we go, we need a hero, and heroes are apparently in ready supply. Always with us. Always willing to go the extra mile. And, in the case of Hollywood, always willing to save us while looking extraordinarily HAWT. (Saw "Drive" yesterday. Was so distracted by Ryan Gosling's Adonis as to overlook the fact that he just stomped some guy's face in. Pretty sure the rest of the audience felt likewise.)

So the appeal is obvious.

But what are we really buying into?

And what does it say about Americans as a people that we seem to believe we need saving?

Superman rose to prominence during the height of America's involvement in World War II and made a resurgence in the 1980s. Batman seemed our hero of the 90s. Spiderman may have held the crown in the early 2000s. But what does this all mean? Sure, Hollywood is known for bastardizing alternative media for its own gain (when's the last time you heard of an original Hollywood idea? Don't they have monkeys writing the scripts now? Pretty sure that's the only explanation for "Transformers 2.") Why do we, as Americans, need so much saving? What is it exactly that appeals to us? What is it we feel we need to be saved from, exactly?

Or do we just like to see men in tights?

And if we are so keen on being saved...whom are we relying on to do all of this saving? Cause if it's up to John From The Play--we know it's not gonna be him. Or me. Let's face it, dude. If the world's fixin' to go up in smoke and flame, my happy ass ain't goin' up in some spaceship to stop the oncoming meteor. I'm throwing a "Burn Baby Burn" party. And there will be silly hats. And costumes.

And where is the Batman? He's at home, washing his tights.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Welcome To My Box

Seated around the lunch table, filling out a dating questionnaire:

Miranda: "Age? Check box. Twenty to twenty-five, twenty-five to thirty. Ah. Here we go. Thirty to thirty four."

Charlotte: (referencing Carrie) "Nuh uh. Not after next week. Birthday girl here turns thirty-five."

Miranda: "So check the one thirty-five to forty-four."

Samantha: (to Carrie) "Honey, welcome to my box."

Ahhh...the spa.
The. Perfect. Place.
To relax and unwind. To listen to babbling brook CD #5 while a raven-robed masseuse works out all of life's kinks. To walk around in a terricloth wrap around, sans makeup, and not have to apologize to the populace.
And, apparently, to contemplate one's own mortality.

Soooooo...Thursday I visited the Jasmine Spa in Little 5 Points to spend a graciously given Christmas gift of a facial/massage, and, as is custom, to ensure they "provide the best service possible," I was asked to fill out a standard questionnaire.

Name? Erin
Address? Let's just say I'm from around these parts.
Age? (Check box.)

Check box?


Ah. Here I am. 25-30.


Okkkkkk...Email? Jesus God they are going to crowd my already sated inbox.
Contact Telephone? 770-35... WAAAAAAIT. Did that age box just say 25-30?

Ho - lee - shit.

Prepare for meltdown--cause ladies and gentlemen it just hit me--THIS GIRL is about to jump a box. AND, AS OF THIS MOMENT, I AM COMPLETELY UNPREPARED FOR IT.

Hands quaking, eyes abulge, I dare a stare at the next marker of my life.
There it is, plain as day, black and white and any other cliched descriptor for something that is as plain as Stephani Germanotta with no makeup:

the 31-40 box.

31 to fucking 40?

I know at this moment the spa lights dimmed. The babbling brook ceased, kindly, to give due credence to my inner monologue, which went a lil' something like this: "Ohmeegodohmeegodohmeegod. I have exactly two months to write a national best-seller, sell my first feature length screenplay, lose 10 pounds, learn French, move to the Appian Way, get a personal stylist, steam-clean my couches, vacuum my car, and get my short film edited."

Not necessarily in that order.

I addressed the woman behind the counter: "Turns out, I might not have time for this massage."

While on the table, a man's hands kneading my back like the fresh-baked bread I crafted Wednesday, (Was it Wednesday? Oh Jesus! MY MIND IS GOING! Damned impending new box!) I simply could not let it go.

31? Thirty-frickin-one!?!?

"Alright Miss Greer. If I could get you to flip over for me..."

"Flip over. Yes. Because I must be DONE on one side. Cooked halfway through. Ooooohhhhh it's the end. Of my life. Of my youth. Of my promise and optimism and properly-functioning anatomy. It's all downhill from here. Everything's degenerating. I can feeeeel it."

"Ummm...Miss Greer? I'm going to need you to release me from this strangle hold so I can continue your massage."

"Oh. Yes. Of course. Sorry."

"Nice arm bar though."

"Hey thanks."

'Where'd you learn that?"


Strangle hold. Seems in my panic I attempted to vice grip the masseuse. In retrospect, it may have been an attempt to either 1. prolong the massage or 2. vice grip my life steadfastly into the 25-30 box, where everything seems the safer, more comfortable, more forgiving.

You can rebound from just about anything in your 20s. Heartbreak. Smoking. That brief stint with Veganism. But with the 31-40 box comes expectation. And I just don't know if I can handle that.

In your 30s you are supposed to have everything figured out. The house. The job. The spouse and kids thing. Got it. Nailed it. Secure. That's what's supposed to happen. That's what's inside the box...

Thing is though, I've never lived inside the box.

Most of my life I've spent outside, leaving the box for long intervals to go do whatever I damn well pleased or, occasionally, returning to the site of the box in an attempt to figure it out, to puzzle and solve my wayinto the box where everyone else seemed so comfy cozy. Heaven knows that's where my parents wanted me. And the inhabitants of the box certainly appear happy from the outside. But, try as I might, I would bore of the tast of figuring a way into the impenetrable cube of normalcy and would return to practicing my Mad Madame Mimm impersonation or dancing to "Diamonds and Pearls" on the giant piece of lumber on that abandoned lot on my street.


A few years ago, my stepmom Tana got me a bag with a nekkid dancing heathen on it (one guess as to who that heathen is supposed to be) and beneath me are written these words: "When I am grown up I will understand how BEAUTIFUL it is to administrate my life effectively. Until then I will continue to torch all correspondence that bores me and to DANCE NAKED over the remnants of the still glowing embers."

I like that.

Perhaps one day I WILL learn to administrate my life effectively. It may even happen in the 31-40 box. But, for the moment, I feel the need to start a blaze and dance over the embers.

"I'm the hideous, magnificent, marvelous, mad, mad, mad, mad, mad, mad, mad Madame Mimm."

Wednesday, January 4, 2012


I don't think I've ever wanted to love someone so much and not been allowed.

China-Tori Amos
I think you want me to touch you
But how can I?
When you build a Great Wall around you...
In your eyes
I saw a future together
but you just look away
into the distance..."