Thursday, November 4, 2010

Yesterday...All My Troubles Seemed So Far Away...

I'm going to let you in on a little secret:  I wrote a book before I wrote I'm Stalking Jake!

My first book (unpublished) was called Shoot Me, Stuff Me, Mount Me (much like my blogger alias, I stole the title from an episode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer) and it was about my life as a college student, focusing primarily on all the boys I had crushes on.  I was thinking about my subject matter a few weeks ago, actually, and contemplating how my most epic artistic creations always seem to be centered around guys I think are hot.  So OH MY GOD, I thought, I'm basically the Taylor Swift of the writing world.  And that seemed funnier a few weeks ago than it does now...

ANYWAY.  The story I posted several days ago about Kara and me hanging out with the Queen came from Shoot Me, Stuff Me, Mount Me, and I posted that story for two reasons:  1) It is perhaps the most classic and well-known Becky/Kara story out there, and 2) nothing else in that book is really fit to see the light of day.  As a 22-year-old, I was a horrible, bitchy person who thought every guy on campus was in love with me and every girl on campus was jealous of my awesomeness and who wrote things like, "When I saw Mean Girls, I realized that I was one of them.  And it felt fabulous."

Jesus.  Christ.

For a while, I've been toying with the idea of posting bits and pieces of it in installment form at beckyheineke.com, but I have yet to talk myself into subjecting myself to that level of humiliation.  And as fascinating as I no doubt found it at the time to catalog the length of every skirt I wore (the shortest was 10") and every instance of sharing longing looks across the cafeteria with guys I only had a 50% chance of ever actually speaking to, I don't think anyone else would think that shit's interesting.  (Also, I might want to fictionalize it one day, so I don't want to tip my hand just yet.)

Why am I telling you all of this? 

Because recently there have been a lot of changes in my life -- most of them bad -- and I've been doing quite a bit of clichéd reminiscing...and skimming through that book.

Adding to the nostalgia is that two days ago marked three years since Jake Watch ended.  (Three years!)  I spent those three years writing I'm Stalking Jake! and getting it published.  I spent them planning this blog, writing this blog, realizing I didn't want to write this blog the way I was writing it...  I spent them working a job I hated, getting laid off from that job in the middle of a recession, and then learning the ins and outs of unemployment...  I spent them pounding out my frustrations as I ran hundreds of miles and typed millions of words...  I spent them watching my friends move away from me, one by one...  I spent them drinking, laughing, crying...  I spent them campaigning, reading, coming in last in road races...  I spent them traveling and thinking...  I spent them in pain, in anxiety, in irritation, in anger...  I spent them watching those around me get married, give birth, die... 

I spent them living my life.  I spent them in a world where, for the first time in my short existence, I had no one unique distraction to come back to.  No college, no celebrity blogging, no romanticized member of the opposite sex to focus on.  These past three years, I have changed in ways that I couldn't have fathomed beforehand.  And it's not just that I barely recognize that girl in the first book, who had never written a blog, who had never had a full-time job, who was more concerned about what she was going to wear to Casino Night than how she did on her senior seminar presentation (though I can assure you she outdid herself on both counts), it's that that girl may have been a whiny, self-centered brat, but goddammit, she had more fun than I do.

The short of it:  "Growing up" is highly overrated.

33 comments:

Sasha,  November 4, 2010 at 12:21 PM  

okay - that is weird ... it is description of my past 4-8 yrs and how I look at myself by now...
(tho obivously with different experiences etc ...)

I consider myself being in an early mid-life/work-crisis ... I dont like what I'm seeing in the mirror - but even more bad, I have no idea how to revolve. (I mean how to accomplish to be the me I feel I am... )

Again talking a bit weird here ... sorry ...

gyllenhaalisgr8 November 4, 2010 at 12:38 PM  

I don't know what to say. You're scaring me, girl.

S4M985 November 4, 2010 at 6:07 PM  

I LOVED the last line!! Growing up is overrated... it flat our SUCKS!

I am however, interested in reading some of the snippits from that book. I can imagine it would be quiet a laugh, knowing you now!

Cantara Christopher November 4, 2010 at 6:29 PM  

Juvenalia is a tricky thing, PG. But go ahead and post your stuff. Take it from me, there's nothing like public humiliation to toughen you up.

gyllenhaalisgr8 November 4, 2010 at 7:48 PM  

When I was young, I had too much fun for one person...some of my experiences would curl your hair (eek, it's already curly). I am older now (no duh) but I still have fun AMAP, only in smaller, more legal ways! Keep your chin up (the drool falls slower)!

Prophecy Girl November 4, 2010 at 8:45 PM  

It's that damned quarter-life crisis. It's so much more real than people give it credit for...

I have to admit I remain torn on posting more and just letting it lie. I feel like so much is up in the air right now. I'm in the exact position that I would have (idealistically) liked to have been last year at this time...book out, job gone, nothing to hold me back...and yet still I feel like I have nothing to show for it. And it's not fun right now.

Ugggh. I don't know what I'm even saying here. Except I appreciate anyone even reading this entry. :)

gyllenhaalisgr8 November 4, 2010 at 8:51 PM  

Try the Seeing-that-hill-real-close-up Crisis, LOL! When I get to the top, I'm just gonna find a barrel and laugh all the way down (most of me is shot already anyway)!

NoSuchAngel November 4, 2010 at 9:30 PM  

Beck-you should know that you're not the only one!! I look at where I am now, all the opportunities I let pass me by in previous years, boys I've crushed over, the person I was 5 years ago and the person I am now. And truly, life goes on whether you're ready or willing for it to. One thing the past 5-8 yrs has shown me is how cruel that truth is. People leave, boys break your heart and it would be nice if you could just be able to press Pause, regroup and hit Play when you're ready but it just doesn't work that way. It sucks.

I don't really know what I'm saying either. Just know I know how you feel and it truly does suck. Wish someone would've told me that so I didn't hurry up the process so damn much.

NoSuchAngel November 4, 2010 at 9:33 PM  

As a person who knows where you're coming from, I would love to read more of your first book if you ever decide you're comfortable with doing that. Forgive me for being all cheeky here, but people relate to you, why do you think we all keep coming back?!

Lola,  November 4, 2010 at 10:47 PM  

yeah i agree with no such angel we all relate to you in some way, and that's why we coming back. Also you're incredibly funny! I would love to hear your stories.

Sasha,  November 5, 2010 at 3:19 AM  

@NoSuchAngel
it would be nice if you could just be able to press Pause, regroup and hit Play when you're ready <<< that is funnily the same line I said to my friend the other day ... I'd luv that button ... dammit

Sasha,  November 5, 2010 at 3:31 AM  

P.S.

PG - I thought we were kiinda the same age ... are you in your midtwenties???

joelliea November 5, 2010 at 7:23 AM  

Sharing a quote that I love so much:

"As we grow up, we learn that even the one person that wasn't supposed to ever let you down probably will. You will have your heart broken probably more than once and it's harder every time. You'll break hearts too, so remember how it felt when yours was broken. You'll fight with your best friend. You'll blame a new love for things an old one did. You'll cry because time is passing too fast, and you'll eventually lose someone you love. So take too many pictures, laugh too much, and love like you've never been hurt because every sixty seconds you spend upset is a minute of happiness you'll never get back."

Prophecy Girl November 5, 2010 at 10:16 AM  

Oh God, you guys are making me tear up! *sniff* :)

Sasha, I'm 28. Sometimes I feel 58, sometimes I feel 18. :)

It's really heartening to hear everyone say they feel (or have felt) similarly. There's so much pressure to "have fun" when you're young, but my twenties have been a rather miserable decade, and not for lack of living on my part, but just because. And talking about this with my friends and now you guys, it seems like that's a really common experience, it's just not one people usually talk openly about.

I'll continue to think about posting more stories from my idiotic youth (although upon reflection it would require some work on changing a few identities...funny how the people you always thought would be there aren't and the ones you used to hate wind up being great friends!). :) NoSuchAngel, I feel you, with every word you wrote. And joelliea, that quote was beautiful. :)

Sasha,  November 5, 2010 at 10:39 AM  

@Joelliea Like your quote...

@PG okay - so I'm almost 5 yrs ahead of you ... that's quite some time :)

And you are right - I think - this feeling of "whateveritis" (I can't name it properly) is kinda common but it is a subject no one likes to talk about...
I read an article in a magazine today and it says that this "whateveritis" feeling is so common because our generation has to do it all on our own - there is no more organic-existing-grouping like our (grand)parents had it...

If that makes sense to you - I'm sorry for not finding good words to say what I mean

And if anyone finds that pause-button let me know ... I only now one kind of pause-button "money" but I don't know the next numbers to the lottery

Nothing Really Matters November 5, 2010 at 3:03 PM  

POST, POST, POST!

Darling the inside of my may grow old but the outside will be lifted, botox, collagen, nipped, tucked and what ever else it takes to say looking young!

Kisses darling!

Prophecy Girl November 5, 2010 at 5:38 PM  

Between Sasha's comment about "whateveritis" (a word I LOVE, by the way) and NRM's reassurances, I am feeling significantly cheered this evening. :) (Even if the sentiment is kind of depressing...it's the feeling of camaraderie that I love!)

Also, I have to love all of you guys for entertaining this and not once mentioning the LAOD premiere. ;) I'm hoping I'll have a story for everyone about that...fingers crossed!! :D

Sasha,  November 6, 2010 at 4:56 AM  

sooo I just stumbled over this, and found it a very good read and fitting
http://www.opendiary.com/entryview.asp?authorcode=D785522&entry=10291

I hope you can read, I'm a member there ... I just decided to start writing a diary to get rid of my thoughts - maybe it will help me

Sasah,  November 6, 2010 at 4:59 AM  

P.S. fitting as I think it is part of what we were discussing here.

@PG u hit the nail on it's head ... it's a depressing camaderie but better then none I say - knowing you are not alone is a patch ... a thin one, but at least there is one

ok, I'm getting all emotional now - sorry

Sasha,  November 6, 2010 at 5:01 AM  

As the man sank to the bottom of the swamp, he called out to the boy. "I thought you said this swamp had a hard bottom!"

The boy called back to him. "It does. You just haven't reached it yet."

#justposting

Prophecy Girl November 6, 2010 at 10:39 AM  

Sasha, I can't read it. :-/ But I'm excited that you've started a diary...God knows that writing is my one main therapy in life. :) And I don't know whether laugh or cry over the guy sinking into the swamp! But it's an appropriate image nonetheless. I want to come back to this and post more (maybe less depressing, but still...). My dad just finished reading the book (he'd only read draft versions before) and he said he saw it very much as a book about being lost in your twenties. It's apparently a theme that's permeating everything I'm doing right now... :)

Sasha,  November 6, 2010 at 10:59 AM  

naaawwww dammit ...

I thought that too about the man in the swamp.

Oh ya keep posting - depressing or not, as I said before, it's good to know you are not alone. Tho I'm old already (concerning not being in my twenties anymore)

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