Clean and Elegant

Clean and Elegant

Tuesday, 17 October 2017

Dear Vincent, Three things that happened in my thirties were vertigo, and plumber's butt, and the voice that comes with a hand that's ready to slap.

Dear Vincent,

Three things that happened in my thirties were vertigo, and plumber’s butt, and the voice that comes with a hand that’s ready to slap. On Friday, October 6, I wrote a terrible poem about a squirrel, then opted to pop 2 mg of Abilify, and 10 mg of Celexa. I waited until after the full moon but I could not wait until after Tuesday, October 10 when Jupiter is supposed to move into Scorpio, or the other way around, or however that works. I could not wait any longer.

Ten days later, there are turmeric stains all over the fridge. I’ve decided that having an orgasm is more important than pharmaceutical sanity and/or medicated forgiveness. This is to say, I canned the drugs and this might go as terribly as the Squirrel Poem, “Dear Squirrel, I will not steal your peach.”
Dear Squirrel, I will not steal your peach
Sunday morning, on the branches of the tree outside my window I saw two squirrels, fatter than ever, humping and pawing and nipping at each other. It was the first time I’d ever seen squirrels engaging in anything that resembled fornicating slash oral sex slash picking crumbs or bugs out of one another’s fur. In India, the monkeys were fucking all the time, all over the place and very fast.


Where have all the squirrels been fucking all this time?


On Wednesday, October 4, 2017, I crouched at the end of the ABB to FIE shelves of the Mordecai Richler library next to my Abilify and Celexa, and a cardboard tube I’d found in someone’s garbage and a pulp novel by Laurence Brock called Borderline.


I texted my friend Benjamin Tracy a photo of the Abilify, and the Celexa, and the cardboard tube I’d found in someone’s garbage, and the pulp novel by Laurence Brock called Borderline, plus my fungussed toenailed foot, shod in a Birkenstock.




Abilify + Celexa + Garbage Tube + Scorching Pulp Novel + Fungussed Foot in Birkenstock

“Do you want some Abilify?” I wrote to Benjamin Tracy.


To my right were the remainder of the works of Laurence Brock, the novels, “Getting off,” and “Hit Me,” adding to “Borderline” which I think might have been written before they invented personality disorders.



Benjamin Tracy knows a lot about therapy. And drugs. In May of 2009, I went to Toronto to visit him on a sex trip. Once Benjamin Tracy declared that in return for sterilization, the government should offer incompetent people $35 plus a free doughnut of their choice.  Any kind of doughnut you want. Just please never ever have kids.



Benjamin Tracy recommended I keep the Abilify for myself.


I told him that for me zero orgasm and obesity equal dealbreakers when it comes to the drugs.
Benjamin Tracy said that neither of these things are as bad as crazy,


“Depends on the crazy,” I said.


“You’re contemplating long-term disability,” he said. Then, “Don’t be pessimistic”



I feel very pessimistic, but I’m hanging on by an orgasm and a recipe for golden milk.



Dear Vincent, Have you ever tried golden milk?
Dear Vincent, Have you seen the squirrels fucking?
Dear Vincent, How are you crazy?


As for me, I really struggle to leave a feeling unexpressed and without an audience. And I realize this is amazingly self-involved, borderline narcissistic, highly strenuous, masturbatory, inconvenient, inefficient, and, unlucrative. So too agrees the voice with the hand.



I would not accept a doughnut to restrict access to this womb. Doughnuts are notoriously difficult to digest. Also, I tend to boycott surgery. Also, this womb is already inaccessible. Also, my prize of choice would be an extremely high-quality microfiber cloth, or seven.


My mother has given me six reasonably good quality micro fiber cloths. You might call them fuchsia, or else magenta. When they get wet, their dye runs onto the walls, leaving bright fuchsia and magenta blobs. These blobs go pretty well with the turmeric stains.


Three things that tend to take over are, turmeric splotches, vinegar smells, and glitter. Plus the voice that comes with the hand that’s ready to slap. Four things.


Tumeric stains plus magenta has to be enough coherence for today. Next time I see you, I will likely have turmeric stains beneath my fingernails. I cherish your professional help.


Love, Erica.




You too can write imaginary emails to Vincent. The project is called "Mondays without Vincent" and the secret email address is: ericaschmidt85(at)gmail(dot)com. Vincent will be delighted to hear from you. He will write back as soon as he can.
Much love, Erica.

I went to the Slow Dance and was reasonably pleased with my outfit.


Exuberant Bodhisattva on Facebook
Twitter: @mypelvicfloor
I Let Go

Bodhisattva Business Ventures:

Deep Cleans by Erica J. Schmidt (@deepcleanswitherica)
Montreal Hippie Threads (@mtlhippiethreads)
Instagram: montrealhippiethreads



Rideshare, Sterilization and Doughnuts
Dear Vincent, This letter is about saving a begonia.
Dear Vincent, Thank you for responding to my hysterical phone call.




Sunday, 1 October 2017

Dear Vincent, When I get really upset, I need to be seen, heard, felt and loved by someone whose dick has been inside of me. Or else you.


Dear Vincent,

When I get really upset, I need to be seen, heard, felt and loved by someone whose dick has been inside of me. Or else you.


Now the decade-long fortnight without you is all over. Another has begun. On Tinder, I have more than fifty matches. Mostly nobody talks to me except every once in a while someone asks me where I bought my banana hat, and how often I wear it. In such cases, I tend to fault them for being unoriginal, and reply nothing 

"Nice bananas."
Today it is October 1st. I was born in October, as were my mother and sister. But they are Libras, a club I never made it into. Recently I dreamt I was meant to assist my mother through her labour and birth. She wished for a VBAC, a Vaginal Birth After Caesarean. Her Caesarean was me. I was late and upside down. Some people say that upside down c-section kids don’t flip because they want to remain closer to the sound of their mother’s heart beat and isn’t that beautiful. When I was born, legend has it that my father turned white as a ghost. Once they told my mother I was fine, she had the sense that now if she were to die, biologically, this would be reasonable, as though her task as a mammal was complete. The three and more decades that followed have contained

Endless quests for keys,

Piano lessons,

Bunion surgery,

Divorce,

Dead goldfish,

Dogs,

Hamsters,

And neighbours.

That mothers drive their children to pet stores to replace their deceased rodents is heroic.

In my dream, I could not find my mother’s birthing room and so I was of no help, and not heroic.

If I were to have a daughter, I’d name her October.

Mostly on Tinder, when I tell people I write letters to my therapist and post them on the Internet, they do not write back. Though one guy who is finding the cure to cancer on government grants did write back, and we ate sandwiches. He said he had to go home shortly after I announced that I was pretty sure I needed to cancel my debut as a nude life-drawing model due to the fact that the organizer was insisting that I show up with an excellent haircut, makeup, and fully shaved. I felt this was oppressive and also refused to consent to naked photos of myself proliferating around the Internet. The gig was only fifty dollars, and I am naked on the Internet in other ways. Perhaps my Cancer Curing Grant Friend felt that my resistance to shaving meant that I had a massive bush, and some people are opposed to such things. Or maybe I was just too tall, and/or talked a little too much about my therapist.

Mood Sports in the days that followed were rather treacherous.

For example, I composed my ex-boyfriend this angsty text message:

“Everything is wonderful but I still hate my life.

Dear the Boatman,

I have had two difficult mornings in a row. This morning I almost called the crisis center but I knew all they would saw was, have breakfast and take a shower. So far I have had breakfast. I did not take a shower yet. My vagina was a bit itchy so I used a syringe to stick some yogurt inside. Now it is coming out in weird disgusting chunks.

When I get really upset, I need to be seen, heard, felt and loved by someone whose dick has been inside of me.  Or else Vincent. As it turns out, none of these people tend to be all that available.

It seems like the greatest gift you can have in life is to not give a shit. You seem to have mastered this well. Perhaps Vincent has too.

How nice for you.

Love, Erica.”

After writing this, I had a shower, called the crisis centre and never ended up pressing send.

The syringe of yogurt up inside your vagina is something I would probably recommend.

I never told you I was looking out my window, but I am. It looks like my landlord has thrown out some houla hoops. One purple, one yellow. Too tiny for an adult. This makes me think of hopscotch which is not quite a sport, but not quite that easy either.


The leaves in my begonia are covered with this chalky white residue which could be from a fungus, or from bugs, or from the trucks in my back alley that deliver boxes of fruit or coat hangers or toilet paper to Parc Avenue shops, or from bird shit, or perhaps my begonia is simply dying.
The Begonia, Pre-Ugly White Residue, Post-Thrive 


Someone on Tinder has broken his ribs in a vineyard. The doctors gave him morphine. As for me, I still haven’t cracked the Abilify.


If I had a daughter, I’d name her October. The next sentence could be, if I had a son, I’d name him Vincent. Except everybody knows I don’t want kids anyways.

See you in a Tuesday or two.

Love, Erica.


You too can write imaginary emails to Vincent. The project is called "Mondays without Vincent" and the secret email address is: ericaschmidt85(at)gmail(dot)com.


Vincent will be delighted to hear from you. He will write back as soon as he can.

Much love, Erica.



Together at last.


Exuberant Bodhisattva on Facebook
Twitter: @mypelvicfloor
I Let Go

Bodhisattva Business Ventures:

Deep Cleans by Erica J. Schmidt (@deepcleanswitherica)
Montreal Hippie Threads (@mtlhippiethreads)
Instagram: montrealhippiethreads



Dear Vincent, Are you lonely? Do you have a pain body?
Hour of God on a Friday
Mother's Bunion





Monday, 18 September 2017

Dear Vincent, Can you hold me?


Dear Vincent,

Can you hold me? Last Monday, my Magical Hoarding Client wanted me to hold her. She’d had a long and tiring day. So many of my Magical Hoarding Client’s days are long and tiring. When she arrived, it was 4 PM, and I was washing the window of the door to her front balcony. I’m really into washing windows these days. With vinegar and lavender essential oils, and a magical turquoise microfiber cloth called A Glass Act. I greeted my Magical Hoarding Client with a hug. I have never been skilled at providing majestic-everything-will-be-profoundly-okay-and-the-world-is-just-about-perfect kind of hugs. As I went to let go, my Magical Hoarding Client exhaled deeply and asked, “Um, can you hold me.” I placed my hand behind her head and pulled her in a little more strongly and thought, if only one day, Vincent could hold me too.

Impossible love, so often, this has been one of my favourite distractions. Yesterday, in the hopes of displacing my main reserves of lust and daddy issues onto someone other than my therapist, I joined Tinder. I matched with some tall blonde lawyer named Alex, and I told him this.

“I joined Tinder because I’m pretty sure I’m too attached to my therapist, whose name is Vincent.” Pretty sure Alex unmatched me though I keep swiping every which way and messing everything up.

Now I’m walking to see my social worker with whom I will discuss Tinder, and the fact that I  feel like love you.

Someone is sleeping on slabs of cardboard next to a parking lot on a street I’ve never heard of called Sewell Street, just a little north of Des Pins. I haven’t hit myself since the morning of our last session. What helps is sleeping on the couch, where the street lights can’t keep me awake, overexercise, pumpkin seeds, and refraining from agonizing over my failure to meet September’s financial goals.

I’ve made it to Saint Laurent below Sherbrooke, right around the corner from where my ex-ex boyfriend Simon jumped off his building and died. Three homeless people, two men and a woman are standing across the street from Just for Laughs. The man whose blonde dread locks make him look like he was on the swim team for fourteen years is yelling at the tiny woman who appears tired and rather distraught.

“There’s something wrong with you,” he’s shrieking. “Eat a vitamin or something. You look like you’re gonna fucking die.” Tiny, tired and distraught, she walked away. I walk past Metro Saint Laurent, Ontario Street and turn onto de Maisonneuve.

My vagina started to bleed last Thursday. I feel okay, kind of twitchy, and my brain and heart and likely, also my vagina, are not without loneliness, and, not without grief.

After our last session, I wept almost delicately because I wouldn’t see you for two weeks, and due to the assumption that if I get into this program for people with personality disorders, they will surely have me switch to another therapist. To console myself, I went to Plaza Saint Hubert and bought pink and purple throw rugs for my entrance and my kitchen, and an ugly awkward mug to replace the other one that pictured Princess Diana and Prince Charles when they sailed across the Atlantic to Nova Scotia on the Royal Yacht, before their marriage fell apart and before Princess Diana died in a car crash. My new mug is handpainted from Jamaica, featuring two ugly goldfish and beige coral that extends up the handle. The top of the handle is a yellow starfish. The goldfish mug cost 75 cents and it is wonderfully awkward and ugly, and, like all the mugs, it is already broken.

Gallery of Awkard Ugly Mugs from Past and Present:






The social worker called me in as soon as I arrived. There was no time to fuck around on Tinder, or watch the video about Erik who contracted HIV, or read the pamphlet about how to prevent a Meth overdose.

With the social worker, I cried more than the last time, and made fewer winning jokes. He recommended that the next time I see you, I should broach the inevitability of no longer being your patient, and how I can prepare for the grief and loss this might entail. It feels like so much of life is preparing for grief and loss, and living inside it.

These days, the city is full of monarch butterflies. I just saw one flapping its wings on the sidewalk. I am walking up Saint Timothée and a middle aged man with underworked beard exclaimed that with the light and my hair and whatever I happen to be wearing, it would make a belle photo. A young mother is soothing her large-headed baby who is crying in his stroller. Soon she will secure him into the back seat of her car, and drive away. It has been about seven minutes since I last cried. It feels like so much of life is preparing for grief and loss, and living inside whatever you prepared, or didn’t.

I miss you.

Love, Erica.  


You too can write imaginary emails to Vincent. The project is called "Mondays without Vincent" and the secret email address is: ericaschmidt85(at)gmail(dot)com.

Vincent will be delighted to hear from you. He will write back as soon as he can.
Much love, Erica.


Winning Photo for my Tinder Friends


Exuberant Bodhisattva on Facebook
Twitter: @mypelvicfloor
I Let Go

Bodhisattva Business Ventures:
Deep Cleans by Erica J. Schmidt (@deepcleanswitherica)
Montreal Hippie Threads (@mtlhippiethreads)

Instagram: @montrealhippiethreads


Chuckie the Horse and the Day Jack Layton Died
Dear Vincent, Are you lonely? Do you have a pain body?
Already Broken