Clean and Elegant

Clean and Elegant

Tuesday, 31 December 2013

2013: An Ecstatic Year with the Exuberant Bodhisattva

January: I start a new job as a French Assistant at a Montessori School. I tell tiny children to push in their chairs, go to the bathroom and wash their hands in French. Some of them stare at me with huge eyes and nod their heads in bewilderment. The rest of them cry all day. When I lie down at night, I hear their screams. I wake up at 4:10 a.m. so that I can cram in two hours of Ashtanga yoga before my one-hour commute and 9-hour day with these newfound darlings.

February: To prevent the horrible skin that comes with sleep withdrawal, I begin to rub coconut oil into my face and body before showering at night. All night I scratch myself unknowingly. My boss asks if I have a cat and if that cat is digging holes up my forearms. My face becomes horrid and blotchy and the Boatman suggests that I might be allergic to coconut oil. School closes several times due to snow and I find this to be delightful.

Also, I am permanently infected with tiny people germs. My chronic symptoms range from a sore throat, repeated sneezing, endless snot, nausea, headache, loss of appetite, and a decisive sense of mediocrity which permeates through all the cells of my body.

March:  I develop adamant views regarding potty training. I decide that all the world’s problems stem from the fact that children are allowed to shit their pants up until the traumatic age of two when they are suddenly given the responsibility of eliminating their waste at appropriate times in appropriate places. I am prepared to devote my life to this, but the Boatman points out that this would require that I make my own child which is a terrifying idea.

April: I start sleeping in until 4:30, but the cumulative lack of sleep has already led to my clinical insanity.  I cry constantly. The ecstasy of snow days is over. The people on the bus smell like stale crushed mildewed garlic. During my break one day, I meditate outside in the playground and the police come by, suspicious. In another blog, I post The Little Savage and the Hermit, the epistolary novel I wrote with my ex-boyfriend, with the hope that it will be an enormous success and deliver me from my miserable existence.  (I take this down before it has a chance to go viral. In 2014, or 2015. I can’t remember.)

May: The clinical insanity continues. I leave the house in a tearful frenzy and fall asleep crying about the birthday parties I didn’t get invited to when I was twelve. My body resurrects its previously latent weird neurological twitches.  At unpredictable intervals, my shoulders shrug involuntarily and my esophagus contracts as through I am going to puke. Sometimes I gasp out of nowhere, like I was sitting in the passenger seat of a car and a tractor trailer was driving straight towards me.

I put my menstrual blood online in a blogpost that despite its extensive preparation, does not go viral.

On May 29, exactly three years since I broke my arm in 2010, my knee swells up on the way to work. I figure I should probably ease up on my 4:30 a.m. ritual of aggressive cranking.

The Blood

 June: I get a good physiotherapist for my knee and start all the way over with Ashtanga. This allows me to get significantly more sleep. I become less obnoxious almost immediately. I read Choose Yourself by James Altucher and my oxtocin levels increase almost immediately.

Me reading Choose Yourself and radiating Oxytocin
July:  I go to two appointments with an expensive psychologist and then fire him. My bosses only make me work for one week at summer camp. After that I go on E.I. and head east for three and a half weeks. While on E.I., I apply for a bunch of jobs at car dealerships, referring them to this excellent blogpost about 3 ways to make the world a better place. Nobody gets back to me

August: In Ontario and Montreal, I ruminate over what the fuck I should do with my life. There is a Part One and Part Two. I figure that if I want to try and make money writing, I’m going to have to branch out and write about something other than myself. Regardless, I continue to write excessively about myself. I submit a couple of posts to Elephant Journal, who has a new program to pay writers, and am rejected three times.

After almost a month away, I miss the Boatman and the Big Black Dog immensely. I am reminded of how much I love them, and that I kind of like being home in Halifax.

Me and the Boatman. Nothing like true love.

Our Darling Big Black Dog Friend
September: I start a new contract at the Montessori School, giving myself the option of fucking off to India if necessary. But when I get there, I realize that I’m happy to see everyone again. And then my bosses offer me something magical. A seven-hour day. Every afternoon at 3:30, as I head for the bus, the children run to the fence and call out, “Good-bye, Erica.” They’re cuter this year, even the ones who cry all the time.
In much sadder news, Eliot, the Big Black Dog suddenly got old over the summer. One by one, his legs go out on him. We make the heartbreaking decision to put him down on September 27, 2013. His last few weeks and his last moments are some of the saddest memories I have. I miss him every day and still kind of expect him to greet me when I get home and come eat the corn chips I drop on the floor.

Eliot gazes at the sea at dusk. His Obituary
October: I become obsessed with death, and enter somewhat of a creative drought. Over Thanksgiving, I lose my voice in Cape Breton. Perhaps this is symbolic. I turn twenty-eight. I miss Eliot.

I go to Halifax BookCamp and meet some obscure and compelling literary people. Also, I learn about Dinosaur Porn. I do not write a novel in 30 days.  I consider writing some catchy, bestselling erotica, but don’t get very far on it.

Dino-porn, an interesting discovery

December: One Friday, I take the school’s compost home from work on the bus. I envision a beautiful chakra Christmas card production, and it is a moderate success.  For three weeks, the children practice four songs for the Christmas concert. The teachers end up singing by themselves. At a fancy dinner at the Bicycle Thief, I ask the Boatman’s father if I can attend his hip surgery. The answer turns out to be no.

The End.

Happy New Year, Love the Exuberant Bodhisattva
Facebook Adventures
I Let Go, by Erica J. Schmidt

1 comment:

  1. I miss reading your posts. Are you going to continue your blog?