December 31, 2012

The Way We Were: A Year In Review

2012 was (in no particular order)...

Starting a blog a week after Christine and how weird we both felt about it after talking about it for years.

Meeting up with Kendall and Jerrod at MFAH for the King Tut Exhibit, and freaking out about how much of the history made sense because of my Art History class the semester before. And that Hatshepsut (the bad-a ladypharaoh I did my presentation on) was there.

Always being aware that he never held my hand.

Collecting too much paper and ephemera for so much art journaling.

Seeing Pablo Francisco live and thinking that it was decidedly the worst comedy show I’d ever been to, and that the local college groups the year before were much more fun. My lipstick was wrong and I felt so small.

Late movie nights in cozy apartments with raccoon pillows not actually made out of raccoons.

My parents celebrating 25 years of marriage and me crying so hard over a pie because it was such a foreign concept; being with someone for so long and still making it work.

Fishing off the pier with the guys that night and smelling like shrimp and fish guts with wind in my face and being so glad I wore the boots. And seeing a ribbon fish for the first time, and feeling so alive.

Hearing the the tv from the kitchen while dying paper doilies for Sophie’s bridal shower. And how we all sang and laugh-cried to the Partridge Family and the Osmonds and The Monkees and Rod Stewart while we decorated and cooked the night before.

That night my worlds converged and I just kept drinking. The bitterness was deafening, and I hated the kitchen, the bamboo room. 

Driving to our first Renegade Craft Fair and laughing hysterically at the sad state of our ‘bargain’ hotel, crayon on the bathroom door, and how Mark just so happened to be in town that first night we ran up and down 6th. And then exploring the fair with Christine and taking so many photos and talking to so many beautiful vendors and meeting some blog crushes and dying a little.

Dinner at the original Kerbey Lane later and asking our sweet waitress Susan for an empty bowl and being nervous but thankful because I couldn’t eat off the menu. And feeling strong later with him and Christine as we all ate together and it felt completely normal.

New moments at the Sundance Film theater, and familiar ones at River Oaks.

Experiencing the NST auto drift competition in a romper and headband the same day he got a haircut and it was the coolest thing I’d seen in awhile.

Having mildly invasive surgery for the first time, everything happening at once, only a week after I’d been officially diagnosed…and everything finally making sense after all these terrible years. And crying a lot to five different medical professionals and mainly saying “thank you…thank you…”

Riding in the Datsun after a shoot and being afraid I’d smell like gasoline or be asphyxiated even with the windows down…and then having to steer in neutral up the driveway into the garage after it died.

Slow dancing in silent gazebos.

Photographing Sophie and Josh’s beautiful outdoor wedding, despite having zero credentials to do so, and having an absolute blast.

Filling my heart with the spirit of Record Store Day, thumbing crazily through the long wall of dollar bins, and hugging special releases to my chest. I remember loving everyone in the room, and talking, and feeling like I’d found My People.

Holy Mountain surprise and Sidebar realtalks with feathers that fall and fade, realizing what perfect timing it was, despite what we were saying, despite singing happy birthday to a girl we didn’t know. And joyriding elevators to find my car, and confessing things in heels to people who love the Beatles and swear against Led Zeppelin.

The day we did two new and one old-new thing. That was a good day.

Happy-crying over every letter I got from her, especially the one that came a few months after she stopped responding, and how much I wanted to hug her when I finally found out what was going on.

Feeling a communal holiday spirit in the frozen hands and toes despite the vodka and meeting the beautiful people of his world between local Christmas songs.

Accidentally starting a film camera collection, that now also includes three instant film cameras. And despite this fact, capturing some of the greatest moments with disposables because I was am obsessed.

Surviving the end of the world in a swirl of lights and color at a gone party at the Museum of Fine Arts. 

Seeing Rum & Vodka at Stages Repertory Theater and feeling way too proud and Andy getting a stellar review in Houston Press.

Falling in love with Liberty Station, especially the night Ceeplus was spinning and I ran to ask him what song that was, and did double takes because the guy near the booth looked like Steve Aoki, and how we beat those guys at foosball.

So much gesso on my hands, feeling the power of paint on my fingers again. 

That trip to Galveston, and how we ruined the end of both nights, but the days were beautiful and sacred, and how we had this perfect view of the beach, and I actually felt like I was on vacation, and I was so thankful for you. And how I begged you to stop at that Antique Gallery before we left town, and you did, and you found the Minnesota.

Squeezing my eyes shut against the roar of planes taking off above me and feeling the barrier break down to my toes, knowing wholeness for an instant.

Staying in that hotel alone, and feeling completely independent and safe, except that I questioned the high ceilings. And conversations with Shareef because he was super helpful and such a character and worked the front desk both times I checked in.

The night Nick drove down because I needed a hug, and I needed a shoulder, and I needed air. So we drove.

Seeing Helen again at Holiday Renegade and falling completely in love with her new designs, and so much nostalgia I could’ve broken open right there, and looking for the Ex Libris Anonymous booth because I wanted a Nancy Drew journal.

Catching up and laughing hysterically with Lemon, Adam, and James; seeing their new place/my old place, and ending up at a random backyard bonfire that was just a holy beautiful mess of love.

The Saturday evening on the Strand that filled my heart.

Airguitaring to/making fun of Foreigner in Nick’s apartment while he baked cheesebread and we worked on a 500 piece iridescent Star Wars puzzle, laughing at everything and enjoying silence. And sitting on his stoop later and thinking this really is the perfect spot but understanding the emptiness.

Two stepping at a country bar but mainly just sliding around in heels and thinking how ridiculous the whole thing felt.

Proud-crying while shooting my brother and his friends at a coffee shop show, and singing silently along. Proud-crying again at Dunn Bros open mic night when my little sister sang with my brother. And proud-crying for the millionth time when Farewell Abigail killed the talent show.

The look on my great-grandmother’s face and knowing she was an hour and a half away, despite the salvaged party and the hordes of people loving on her. Her heart was with the people who couldn’t.

Dancing the night away with Mark at the millionth Spazmatics show this year and having the time of my life; so barefoot onstage and liberated I didn’t even have words…all I could think was “this is the New Years Eve of my dreams”…in mid-December. And how he wanted a mix of 80s music after because it’s infectious.

Driving that same route over and over again in rush hour traffic, always feeling wrecked before and after going into the city. Sometimes the music filled my bones; sometimes I drove in silence and screamed into the steering wheel.

Psychedelic backyard party that was actually Dan Electro’s Guitar Bar, when we finally went because Handsome Ransom was playing, and I dressed accordingly this time, and it was home.

Staring at the entrails of my old laptop while you tried to resuscitate it to sell, trying to hold a straight face and watching everything implode behind your eyes as you turned some frivolous screw over and over and over because neither of us knew how to handle what was happening. And how we broke character when it was done with key card complete and the confusion that followed.

Finding seawall graffiti that I believed with my whole heart and that’s why I snuck a photo. It was the perfect day.

So many nights of digging my fingers into the carpet during closeted phonecalls to Cara about everything, and realizing she’s been the best thing to happen to me this year. I thank God for knowing her.


1 comment:

  1. excellent writing, & living, dear jessica! happy new year. :)


You're so sweet (: Thanks friend!


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