Kelly green [ch 2 of 6]

[Kelly green]

Will I make my way all the way through med school, probably. Will I have any legacy as a medical professional, probably not. As far as crafting a brand, which is a dumb way to drift-in-life anyway, will I ever get published, will I be gay or straight: I refuse to answer those questions. It’s already like, reckless enough to bring it up. Now people are thinking about it and then, if they ask about one of those things, I’ll get defensive. This is why I rarely talk.

This piece originally was going to be for Kelly, she’s an old friend. Her birthday is December 5, she’s a Sagittarius; as a Capricorn I’ve always been a bit resistant to her happy-go-lucky attitude, even a bit aggressive toward it. Of the old pre-college friends I could probably still hear back from if I tried to reach out — and I think this reflects fine on me, since I didn’t plan it this way — one has gone to Princeton and works in publishing, another is Kelly, who I last saw alongside Audrey O in a coffee shop in Minneapolis; and Audrey O [who I knew well in fourth grade] (we were bests) just graduated from Harvard Law. And there’s Jane already introduced, who comes from the family of almost all nurse anesthetists, which is not why I might go into anesthesiology though it might not-take-me-away from it because these are good humans.

Kelly’s got pretty good instincts about people, I think; I wouldn’t put it past her to sort of judge me a bit but, I actually don’t mind it when that happens from friends.

It could be useful to re-summarize now, how a deterioration of my health both physical and mental, was so extreme and noticeable that I suspected my old, not new, friends — who generally have stable lives and healthy habits, it’s just who I’m drawn to when I’m not living with my parents (who struggle with that) — literally didn’t know what to do with it sometimes, when I showed up somewhere in an authentically-deplorable state, or at least, deplorable in my own opinion toward my self because like, I wanted to be successful once. I really did. More frequently than stick around, they [people I knew] just bolted.

Or maybe honestly, sometimes, kept their distance.

Does that mean I’ll be kicking it with everyone who I believe just “bolted,” rather than like, trying to make some new friends since I’m pretty much a different person. (To clarify since I can see how people might assume it’s what I mean, being a different person now is not a sexual identity thing. It’s other things, I can’t change.) That’s another one of those questions, I’d rather not throw out, partly because I don’t think it’s a choice. It’s life, you just roll with it.

My sister would say: you’re paranoid, none of this actually happened, they all still love you. I’d say stop, it doesn’t matter what “happened” or not, it became my reality. And in my reality I’ve truly taken alienation and isolation and reclusion and whatever-it-was, for years, to beyond normal extremes; do I think my whole life will be like this, no honestly — I think I’ll be around other people who sort of socialize for me; e.g. my sister — but I just kind of assume the worst because, still at the start of this project, I don’t see such a problem with assuming the worst, even though I’ve been taught not to, in therapy and stuff. It’s how to stay frosty, in business. Kelly was not one of the friends who bolted and, she kind of surprised me when she’d be the first to congratulate me, actually like “wow Morgan!!” — being nice or just a good person, when she found out I was preparing to go back to Columbia; basically it’s the best I could do and it took a lot of work to get back in. I was lucky. I can’t really think about it or I’ll never finish.

In medical school admissions world, they can always, easily, just “find someone better” and so, like, I shouldn’t mess it up. Grad school is a little more lenient (I think it’s just easier to get in to grad school) but. Not messing up. That’s been the idea.

Still as far as like, other things that matter in life, not school — I have to say some of the times Kelly and I hung out recently, for me at least, me who had such high hopes and prospects as a younger person, were very awkward: I just like, didn’t want to admit what I’d been through, who would honestly. It was too much.

Growing up: Jane [see ch 1 of 5] had the best house but Kelly’s upstairs, complete with cable television and Kid Pix — also plenty of nail polish, I used to paint mine with friends never alone though — was the shit. I just remember there’d always be one of those junky celebrity Entertainment Tonight! shows on TV. I’d sort of be half-watching; like, I might perk up if something came on about Nsync and associated celebs. At other friends’ houses we’d “binge-watch” Nickelodeon or Disney until we had headaches, before binge-watching was just the norm; literally all the good shows were on those two channels, or like MTV but that tended to be a little too adult. Like it got uncomfortable or I was just lame.

My favorite celebrities were influenced by my sister, I didn’t really have favorites unless they were hers, honestly it’s peculiar in retrospect how much I just latched on because I think I’d imitate her to seem more normal than I truthfully felt. But if I did have my own favorites they were probably like the lead male characters in action movies, like Tobey Maguire in Spider-Man and Neo in The Matrix (not Trinity though, Trinity was like, unusual to me back then in terms of female stars). I didn’t grow up watching finer films, just hearing about stuff like Pulp Fiction from my parents; that was like the extent of my exposure to masterpiece stuff. And I liked cartoons like Arthur and later, The Simpsons.

Now. I can’t say if my being drawn to male action stars meant I was trans which I’ve begun to wonder — I’d prefer to say, I was just a tomboy; but, these days, I might be considered a boy basically because yeah, I got really into it. And did it ever wear off, I feel like my mom Rose Ellen is suspicious NOW more than she was then. The only exception maybe, to me wanting to be the guy in big movies, was like the “second original” Charlie’s Angels, I thought Drew Barrymore was (and all of them actually were) awesome? I remember being very scared in that scene of her getting her mouth gagged; but then I watched it like 20x, like something about it, kept me replaying that scene. Also, though this came a bit later, Kill Bill was kind of a big moment.

So I liked action stuff, I liked the girls and did it mean, I was not straight? To the contrary I might just have liked characters who didn’t give up so easily. But let’s say maybe (as a thought experiment) I was always gay, from a young age. I got into Annie Hall some time high school and, I was never the same.

Ugh, if I could go back, I’d NEVER have seen it and started dreaming of a life like that. What kind of life? A life like in Annie Hall, which my boss at a min wage job said (of that specific film), “[it] was like, filled with all these material things and it seemed like they were still so unhappy, I mean I liked it Morgan, I hear you.” What I meant though was a life like Woody Allen’s as a director-writer. If I hadn’t seen that shit, I just wouldn’t have known Woody Allen was a thing.

Any queer energy would have been sublimated into violent writing.

I might not even have gone to New York, I might have gone to Cali.

Kelly’s favorite movie and book, respectively (she’d tell me at one point like just after high school) were Girl, Interrupted and Lolita. She “just kinda liked them.” This is how she talks, a woman of few words but, those few words just kind of cover ground.

For my eleventh birthday at a bowling alley (which I attended wearing a T-shirt and cap for Wicked the musical, which I saw Idina Menzel in 3x), she got me a stuffed cow. Cows are still my spirit animal, either that or puppies, Kelly’s to blame if they are cows. As younger adolescents back in her attic, I would lead prank calls during our playdates, like intense ones; in retrospect I’m not sure the demons that drove me to make fun of people on the phone — or, like, my self, with comedy videos (to me not always funny but actually destructive) — were entirely separate from the demons that later shook me in less trivial ways. What kind of prank calls, I don’t know. I’d call like local businesses and just riff, like “heyy sooo I was in the bathroom earlier and, I think I might have like left something.”

“Sure if you like, I can go check.”

“It’s like, a small bag.. like.. a small rubber bag.. with a tube going in it. Can you please just check for me thank you.”

I was envisioning an enema bag, which isn’t that funny but I was younger then. And a freak. I don’t know what you were envisioning. I tried to bring back the enema bag prank, in a bildungsroman film script that I ended up deleting. I just don’t think it’s that funny anymore. I mean you gotta admit, that’s kind of fucked up.

Kelly

The prank calls could have been worse; anyway, my actual sins came later. Like when I toilet-papered Jane’s house? Why, literally because my older friends like, pushed me into it. Jane had to clean it up. Weird kinds of things like that, in our friendship. (“Thanks Morgan, and by the way, f*** you too,” Jane would basically say back, disheartened.) I could have gotten a misdemeanor, or lost our friendship, I don’t know why I took those risks but I wasn’t as pristine a star student as I seemed. Jane’s and Kelly’s and my core friend group would see people come and go, though the three of us somehow stayed intact, and I won’t question why though I’ll observe that beyond our squad of three we generally don’t hang out with the same types of girls.

Kelly and I were in the same high school bio course with a lot of the bro-lite kids, which was the term at our high school for the popular kids who weren’t quite as insane as the bros, the bros were like intense, like party folklore about lost virginities and straight guys actually having sex, like with eachother but somehow they definitely weren’t gay, and girls popping cherries with a toothbrush so they could have sex at parties — I never understood that — and DUIs that literally everyone at school talked about, yeah. Even the teachers, they’d like, give spiels at the start of class if there was a bad enough party that everyone knew about, if someone almost died (big deal) [I mean literally, but if that someone happened to female then teachers shouldn’t be getting involved]: about drinking and the dangers it posed to the rest of your life, it was a problem at our high school known throughout the district so teachers tried to intervene to preserve the school’s rep. I hope it’s not disrespectful to say that our high school was super easy for me, except for maybe “SLAP” Physics and Higher Level Calculus. I got 5s on the AP tests for both those classes. Besides decent grades, a 3.99999999 I got one A minus — a boy I lost my virginity to later told me, I should not be proud of that, I was like “f*** you too” — I had my own grosser addictions. Kelly used to get an unlimited supply of watermelon Trident from her mom who was a secretary at a dentist’s office. I’d ask Kelly to give me some and she’d come with a clear sealed Ziploc baggie of little packets. That’s the year I did my college applications, and got into Brown, Columbia, and Dartmouth. I didn’t apply to Harvard I just didn’t like it, the only school I was rejected from was Yale, which is still a sore spot in my backlogged confidence from a few years that seemed to be going quite well for me, maybe, partly, thanks to the gum — I’ll never know if it literally helped me on my school work, or if I just think it did.

It probably did help my class performance to be clear; there are studies that show, it improves focus, but, it also has other side effects, that suck, do I regret it now, duh. Because it damaged my gut, the second brain, and affected my face. I will try not to judge myself beyond what’s necessary to do fine in this life, given certain tribal structures that keep women fighting with one another and keep men pursuing the fairest, which of course isn’t unfair it just is biological. Is this proven, not that I know of. But while I’m on that topic I’ll mention that Kelly is the type of girl who always is remarked upon by men, “so pretty.” In Minneapolis, in central Uptown (parts of the city that would later, not then, be messed up a bit by some riots) Kelly took up a huge window on an Aveda salon, just another modeling gig — my dad would remark on it when we drove by, “she’s whew.” She’s humble, professional models kind of tend to be. It’s not that easy of a field despite the perks. There’s always someone prettier, nicer.

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I’ll let New York do some judging for me and I’ll merely imagine what people have said, when I’ve put my self out there face first in New York. What was said to me literally, was nothing, nothing at all mostly, except a few things, I got upset about initially. (“You can’t sit with us!!”) It was the first time I’d been called fat but it’s a different town than Minneapolis. And it’s all f***ing fine — I got by on other charms, I think in retrospect? Perhaps, perhaps.

*This is when it gets weird and my regrets really flare up* At Columbia I got mostly A’s, but didn’t get tapped by any sororities or social clubs, I didn’t party, in college, at all!!

It’s alright, it’s whatevs. Same as high school for me though I did like to go to Minneapolis nightclubs like once a month or maybe like drink at the movies, with friends, and I’d go entirely nuts and find it hard to stop like one of those red “fire alarm” latches got pulled in me (good image not actually; it’s disturbing, on purpose). In retrospect I realize that I found a way to cope with trauma, though I’ll refer to trauma in more literary terms as: my demons!! That’s a better word for the thoughts that keep me up at night.

Victimhood is pretty. Like literally sometimes? I’d like to challenge this, and intend to by the end of this project.

In New York I’m probably [not] the first person ever who believes that attending parties, in some otherworldly reality where slick snakes slithered stealthily and monster men metastasized like maggots in my mind’s knottiest thoughts, all that, would have been more beneficial than what happened to me alone in my room for years during and after undergrad. Writing and sometimes eating by my self. Actually, it would be accurate-enough to never leave unmentioned, all the many times I tried to fast off the weight. God. It worked once… but it was like The Joker not like Black Swan.

Nothing else though, worked, I never did anything else; don’t believe the rumors if there are some!! (There are none. I hardly exist now based on the numbers I see.) Still I’d never say it’s not-unsafe to party hard as a female person with a bro crowd in the city of New York especially, I would select it as a preferable form of harm reduction, say, if I could choose [and I don’t know if I could] between that and what occurred in my actual reality for me — which was unhyperbolically shitty to experience, though the novel I wrote for years alone might begin to make it sound a bit less like a quicksand hell pit of unpleasantries; I’m trying to make it fun, fun, fun, fun, fun like in the track “House of Tables” by The Weeknd. Not insane at all!! But last time I looked over a draft of the novel I’m like “this melodramatic sh** is NOT as good as I narcissistically thought… help me…” No one helped, a few people kicked me back into the snake pit.

They were like ulch thank god, she won’t be bothering us, in my head. Go back to where you belong!! Hiya, [fill in the blank with your preferred name-call]. At least the book’s trashiness was authentic, but honestly I was all like, “what, the f, have I done.”

In my dad’s attic four months after I was hospitalized for drinking too much, I’d resort to binge-eating instead.

It was like I never, ever, ever felt satiated.

My father would Freudian slip me for our fat dog, he said her name instead of mine, one day, I just knew it was something I should pay attention to (as a bad sign). My mom’d said at one point, “Dad doesn’t see weight,” I said: “yeah and it’s a problem, I lose touch with reality maybe just a tiny bit?”

I stepped on a scale, and realized, I’d literally gained almost, forty pounds since moving in with my father! ! That’s a lot!!! ! Holy, fuck, no censoring the word. FUCK FUCK FUCK FUCKDA FUCKDA FUCK FUCK.

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I threw out the meds. It was the second time I’d done this: first time was in the dumpster out back. This time down I threw them down the toilet, so I’d get used to living in my screwy new CHAOS REALITY without them.

In early 2021, living mostly out of a relative’s Upper West Side apartment, who hardly even gave me permission but was living elsewhere during quarantine, I’d even stopped responding to my roommate on campus. **

I could hardly stand long enough to take a shower, let alone for twenty hours in a room operating with someone: for a second there I’d wanted to do surgery?

Does anesthesiology count as surgery? Now that seems like, a bad idea, for a lot of reasons.

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an ok first stanza to a poem from like the worst night of my life literally

What reasons, for instance this one: I think shyness has been a very genuine obstacle for me! Instead of calling it shyness all those years I could say I was just self-protecting, by staying alone inside, so I didn’t get seen and picked on and off who knows. By those voices in my head, though, not other people saying things to me literally. I’ve tried to eradicate my self-consciousness — or even my entire consciousness — in one fell swoop but, let me just say: it’s better treated as a process for the long run. Lols.

What is better treated as a long-term process? Cleaning up one’s consciousness —a bit like keeping a sleeping space in good condition, keeping one’s conscience good and kept up; that is, not unwell, a mess, like bleh ha har di ha.

Back to last year when I was living in my father’s messy attic eating Udi bagels, my parents were the only ones in charge of keeping me meds compliant. My mom — who’s separated from my dad but visited now and then to see me, not him — at one moment wrestled the prescription from my hand, to see the date on the slip, and screamed and wept when she realized I hadn’t been taking them. Not in the best place, in our relationship, I literally struggled not to laugh. I’d only procured the paper from a drawer in my desk to sort of brandish it like a prop, “you don’t understand, there are refills,” I’d said waving it like a white flag and turning on my toes to escape it being grabbed. “This is the RIGHT prescription mamá and I’ve been taaaaaaking them, if I weren’t taaaaaking them I wouldn’t be this f–” I realized I was laughing at myself, “fucked up,” I’d tripped, lost touch with my judgment of what’s fine and what (in terms of disrespect toward one’s mother) reaches a point where it’s actually satanic. Like have you seen The Exorcist, it’s actually about a mother whose girl came down with some mental illness.

Not the devil. Illness!

“You’re not fat!!!” my dad cried out from the living room. The night before, he’d tried to get the girls to come in to watch the Taylor Swift documentary on Netflix: one of them? I think there are at least two or three.

In a dream once, I’d told Taylor — an imaginary friend for a year, when I had no friends, I just kind of made up my own and she was everywhere, I’m sure it’s like a diagnosable psychological phenomenon, stalker of Swift syndrome — she’d lost some weight (in the dream) [with me she had lost a lot, from working out, more than I’d lost on the day I woke up] and she didn’t want me to point it out, nor was she flattered or full of herself, she just said, that she’d had to move beyond thinkin’ a that shit like some crowning achievement to strive for, old school, if it happened it happened boo poo bi doo but it wasn’t something she quite prioritized in-the-same-ways and she didn’t use any of these words because literally no one can write like ME but, I’m narcissistic a.f. currently, it’s literally my brain protecting it self from actual reality, I weigh 140 pounds [*says it like a proud person, loses 45 friends*] — Taylor said in her own words, she wouldn’t prioritize dropping a pound or two over having her self, back on track, stability, which I’d say she could effectively offer me in the dream, it was just me writing her lines, in my brain: I woke up, with a stabler sense of humanity. Scary dream!

Another weight dream, it could have been anyone; although, when I dreamed of Selena Gomez she wasn’t quite as nice. Just sayin’.. she’s a little more original G in her approach, to fame and life, or something. *breathing in through teeth YIKES yikes yikes*

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It really felt like we were friends! 

I can imagine TS, now, adding my name and face to the server of the security database that keeps stalkers out of her concerts.

I refuse like I said to read too much into dreams that are just my smartass self. By smartass I mean dumb.

“Will you f***ing stop, Scott!!!!!! I know she’s important but she’s not important to me,” my mom said that night, in a terrible mood after I’d been so savage to her minutes prior — the dancing on my toes thing. My b.

I didn’t want to watch the documentary either, though with my dad (much less than with my mother!), I’d been getting along oh so swimmingly.

I’d never have been quite so deliberately unkind to my Pops, whose last name Wilcock I so far haven’t taken well. Like I’m ashamed or something?

My mom always said — it’s just because he can’t handle it, I can. That’s why you’re cruel to me instead of him.

I’m like he’s an alcoholic with 5 DUI’s, maybe you’re right? But I’m not just taking your narrative at its word.

My mom was far from a novice, in substance abuse including prescription meds, being a mental health professional herself, so she knew exactly where to look to see, whether I was lying about taking my antipsychotics. Not at my stomach, which I’d have dreams about, right — where the date was written on the prescription slip she’d wrenched from the sky above, in my hand. People at Christmas that year thought I was pregnant according to the dreams, even though I wasn’t pregnant and was, very sexually inactive; it just looked like I was pregs. Lols? Obviously I couldn’t tell what people were thinking this about me! I wondered if it was PTSD, from the times in my early twenties, I’d perceived somewhat-not-entirely schizophrenically [I kept some proof] that I was being cyberbullied by people who, I used to literally believe, would still become friends to me, like I seriously believed that. Trusting my gut, now, because I can again, it’s a bit less inflamed not in great shape: that’s never, the fuck, going to happen. I try not to use this word, literally ever because it’s close to home for me and is ableist, which is a criticism I expect to be burdened with, frequently, if I ever get published. But believing I’d still be friends with people who called me a pig, on the internet: that was pretty retarded. Not sure what was wrong with me.

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On the twentieth floor of the hospital, sometimes they’d have patients talk to students at NYU, who were learning how to be doctors. I did this a few times, as the patient. A Jewish woman there with her son told me, “you’re not like these people.” I was seriously out of it, that might be why I still don’t understand if she was a doctor or just happened to be there with her son-in-training. She said something about having done this for years herself. I just like, didn’t understand. I was like hm.

But I appreciated what she said, it wasn’t funny, honestly I wouldn’t have assumed, “you’re a very smart girl.” Another invisible thread of verbal data that she left me to go to sleep with.

So it was an important conversation; it’s the only hope I’ve really clung to, from those two weeks, no one else has said you’re a smart girl since she (and the doctors there not my peers in school) said it. Just when I’d arrived I was, pretty lost, at sea. I definitely, was not going to be a writer, what could I be instead.

I could be a pirate!

So I’d spend all my time in the mirror honestly hours and hours, noticing my eye had gone lazy which it has from falling out once. Not literally or I’d need an eyepatch, duhr.

Ahoy matee, I’d think. Smiling. Har ha!

Shortly after I came out of the hospital in 2019, I founded a film company Def Ahab named after Moby Dick, knowing it’d probably be years until I inserted those two words into the opening credits of a film. I figured (vulnerable enough to sense a need to believe in something) that it was God punishing me, for not taking life seriously back then, the lazy eye, the removal from any real friends. It was all just God telling me what’s what, like Kanye when he got his mouth wired shut: look-it-up. He thought it was God talkin’ to him.

My jaw meanwhile had gotten bold from all the years chewing gum while writing screenplays. I decided in the mirror it was masculine-looking.

On day nine, I started spitting out the meds — the ones that made me want to dance clumsily as though narc’d in the gluteus. I saw that happen to another patient. I’d have unswallowed these bitches sooner if I weren’t expecting a blood or urine test, which a doctor told me might happen.

It never did.

And nothing, NOTHING, could prepare me for the hunger, but, I think I already went over that.

“GOOOOOD MOOOORNING LOOOOOLLAAAAA,” said John Bayardelle, an artist who once appeared quite accidentally just like, doing a back flip in an amateur dance video that went viral on Beyoncé’s Instagram.

After saying good morning he started dancing to JT’s “Filthy,” like a nearly, but not actually, psychotic person.

I was in the living room, too depressed about how I looked and stuff.

It was July 2020. I could hardly even look up from my laptop but in my mind I was like is this sh** a joke or is he making fun of me. I wanted to die, and I’d be glad when John would start blasting some Max Richter Memoryhouse after this track. It came as a relief. 

“What you gonna do,” sang Justin before the track changed. I did not get up to dance, but it was, actually fun to watch.

The day before John (who sometimes goes by Flowergod) and my self, also his close friend Noruwa, passed around some Mary Jane and I am not referring to Kirsten Dunst in my old favorite action movie; and that’s not funny — despite Covid-19 restrictions having begun, we were relaxing togeths. And I told John because he asked her to share something deep that she’d always felt more like a guy than a woman. I’m not sure whether this narrative was, sort of a disguise, put-on. Because it’s literally not true at all, but I can say it’s true and skip all the backstory leading up. I walked around with shoulders hunched, like a gamer with spine problems, permanent ones, time wasn’t turning back, was wearin’ a baggy blouse that once belonged to my Mormon grams around whom I felt unworthy just before she died; I felt unworthy here too, everywhere honestly — in my head, all was, in flux — I felt like, yo however messed, up I’d become in deadass survival drift mode, this whole Lola-thing wasn’t working so hot.

This shit? Was my life? Are you shitting.

A few minutes after having entered the room the day prior (like having never met him yet) John ran across the floor like a spider and almost caused me and my unfamous friend Jillian to trip and fall over herself. “How did you even move over here that fast, shit,” she’d said, laughing incredulously, in that way she usually laughs. Like she’s not even sure if she’s laughing or not? And that’s like, part of the joke; it’s not funny but she pretends. She just puts her forehead in her hands and is like “what,” it’s like she’s laughing while swinging upside-down on a web, her brain’s hardware bleeding out, yeah, not, fucking funny, Morgan. Either that or — we’ll go with this image, it’s like she’s laughing with eyes rollin’ like “fuck you guys, literally all of you” (except lover and family) while escaping in a spaceship; though, that’s not about to happen for any humans on earth. It was the first time I’d seen her since 2017, when Jillian and I failed, not for the first time, to make a film. I told her to delete all the naked pics she had on her phone from that week, of me. “Thanks buddy.”

I emailed Jillian later in 2020, “we never do anything related to film!! What if we just never do anything, ever.” 

Jillian said [we?..] (what the fuck) “yeah, maybe you’re right.”

Me back and this is word-for-word, also — Jillian.. “I feel like I’m confused about identity and whether power differentials are only real for people affected by them (esp. negatively) — a bit like if a tree falls in the woods and no one hears it. Is it the same if someone is negatively affected by predominant biases but no one notices. Does it matter. Who gives a shit if that person is not powerful to begin with.”

In a short time, as tends to happen to a lot of people just in life (it’s harder to heal or stay intact than to faceplant terribly, harder still where there are no safety nets), I’d gotten pretty messed-up, like BAD, I could be self-disgusted or just like whatever, I fell from grace; people would notice for months and months and months and months and the rest of my life perhaps, sometimes I felt like a mutant and I told Jillian that (still just by email). Rather than go through life a mutant I think I’d just prefer that people, didn’t even know me anymore, I’d be erased, written over. Start again, fight for a life, not this, it was karma I thought, for a while, that messed me up — I’d kind of just live in a room alone and listen to music and stuff. Boo poo bi na na *scatting* sha na ni na ni.

At that time: I didn’t believe in karma, just chaos and getting in and out of it, or just, asserting order where there’s none. Asserting a self when so much to do with selfhood is just like, survival of the fittest. Na?

What do you think art is. And science as opposed to art. Is it different, the best ideas reach the top, the sily ideas, they die like woopitty poop scop. (Only thing I believe in is something greater than us grounded in LOVE not computers which cannot LOVE like animals, actually, well. Never mind.) If only Elon Musk could help design a brain chip to heal food disorders, the world would be so much, better? Not worse. I for one, wouldn’t have gotten or felt so uncouth and gone to such great lengths to escape that; though I’ve been told many times, it is all, just my brain, lying to me. No one ever thought or sent out a negative chirp.

A foggy patch in my memory from those four unmentionable years involves like, pig emojis and subgrams and all these things that for the most part I DON’T have proof of, I just said I did and sometimes bringing it up feels like, being complicit in my own self-harm or a world that in reality would incite it: when maybe it just, didn’t happen. All is literally forgotten. You don’t know what treatment I had. And I should add this — by definition, self-harm requires you to be complicit in it. When I avoid people or even miss meetings [arguably: a form of self-harm, slash, self-defeat] (why not just SHOW UP) sometimes it’s just like, PTSD perhaps, I don’t want to go through the paranoid thoughts. I’m being judged. Again and again and again and again it just never stops. I’m not trying to make this about myself, an experience I imagine is totally universal; sitting across from someone, feeling like the lower status individual. I don’t know if it’s happening in the present or the past or never in the first place, I think what’s more important is realizing there are people (perhaps not the majority but there are people) who think being petty-and-judgmental in itself is avoidable and can sense when someone’s just got that unjudgmental vibe thing goin’.

Does this sound nuts? (Duh.) And does my grasp on grammar objectively suck? And did I not get a perfect score on the grammar section of both the ACT and SAT, back in high school — so a long time ago? I came to see it as respectful, or like a sign of trust in my mid-twenties, when someone even bothered to say something extremely unkind or like, “s.t.f.u. Morgan,” somehow, they sent the clue, “STOP,” it’s just the world like what do you expect, otherwise I felt like they [other people] just wanted me to lose it all; usually I was just, ignored, because people HAVE LIVES.

I did not have a life, though I’d rather put it like this: I didn’t have a self.

Now as Morgan Wilcock, my birth name, not some stage name like Lola that sounds like a porn star’s, I don’t have that many friends left, I’ll stop pretending that’s just a hypothesis it’s a well-tested theory; it’s because of all that, a period of free fall like a descending dead rocket that fucked its whole life up. It’s all outlined in this project. I used to be quite pretty and charismatic, and magnetic, I no longer think of my self as those things. To the contrary I suspect people kind of get nervous around me, it is something I notice and have been told, moving forward I’d like for it to be something I can help with a friendly remark but, let’s say; it doesn’t always work that well, I might be seen as desperate or trying to prove something, it might worsen the nerves of others — I [we?] ended up feeling, awkward as f***.

It’s hard to trust [my self?] [anyone?] again but unlike Trump, who famously taught his kids to “you cannot trust anyone,” and hammered it into their worldviews, I do believe trust is possible — and power is necessary for it, also love with extremely non-phony loyalty still there at the end of the day, that’s what trust is — it just requires a rejection of mean world syndrome, which is a well-tested theory but not absolute fact, which I understand (say like, if we treat rap as a new religion) [though “rap” would never be “a euphemism for a new religion,” and if I were-to-ever-say that I’d be using the term euphemism incorrectly] can be all that people know, mean world syndrome: to get away from it, it might require relative stability and promise of financial and emotional coverage not perpetual debts, of one form or another. To just even begin to try to build some semblance of a perhaps slightly less unkind world, ugh — it might require, what’s that thing you lost from me, trust. 

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“It’s gone.”

“Anything else?”

”No thanks, just another coffee.”

Across from Kelly. Putting hands on head, yee heee ee like goofy the dog crying out. Literally WTF, is going on!?

If I could do it all again, about a month and a half into 2020, before the last scene with John and Jillian chronologically, I’d be sitting across from Kelly at some old café called Five Watt near my dad’s house in Northeast Minneapolis. Trying not to eat, guzzling coffee like water, it wouldn’t make a difference. I’d just look and behave groggier, starved yet swollen and stressed, and experiencing other weird side effects that only would be known to those at the bottom of the totem. Deformities of thought and figure, I won’t get into it because no one likes to think about that. No one except for the millions and millions of people affected by it. Only those who’ve seen me naked could guess what I’m referring to.

My life for a while — not now — would be so so far from what I’d ever dreamed, that it seemed to me, absurdist, maybe, like the end of a play by Edward Albee. By this time, I wanted to be working in media!! Not an easy world to get into and stay well in, respect to those who figure it out, a world many a great female writer has spoken about, where image matters considerably — also the quality of the writing *winces* — too much for me to step in, though a few times, I’d been interviewed and issued a hard pass. Maybe I was issued, like a gratuitiously-unkind dick-in-the-gut, hard, hard pass, Lola? ; though in retrospect I was probably too sensitive or f’ing around in places I didn’t belong. It is very confusing to feel like people who are defensive of their sensitivity are less sensitive than me, as far as just treating other humans well, but whatever. I’m not always that lovely a person. By my mid-twenties I’d probably thrown away my chances and burned bridges more than I ever had to. Like when things might fall apart with boys, I would attribute the rejections to being an ugly female Jew. True or false, it’s better to just not bring it up. Not sure why I didn’t take the hint back, at age 21.

jillian story

So I’d just become, clinically narcissistic! Pride’s not worth nada na ni na, when all other currency is shot, even if it’s kind of a subjective fuel to hustle by: like hope it’s kind of all a lost soul’s sometimes got.

But with my narcissism cast off, now, like the flashy kimono that was Lola, a name-in-my-head, it took a while to figure out the buttons (and, it never worked for me a human female, to act like a drag queen; which is distinct from acting trans) — anyway I realized, writing, just wasn’t a viable career anymore, okay, fine brats.

They literally won? The BRATS in *gesturing hands toward some elusive place* New York media. So instead by age 25, jobless and basically too poor, to choose anything else, I’d have to move back in with my dad and work briefly in the electronics section at a department store— where I’d leave work and walk home in negative 20 degree weather, actually-literally, wanting to die even more than before; I suspected my self was probably like “cancelled” and I couldn’t see a way to reboot her. Shunned. I’d listen to Billie Eilish’s first massive hit album and feel legit confused about how she was so young. So young and so many [older] people’s idol, was that good? I think I felt protective but by then was careful not to get too close to stars in my head; not because they were stars, also not because they were ten years younger, but because they were in my head. I did not watch porn, I don’t unless it’s Caroline Calloway’s OnlyFans which is more like fine art so fuck it. At my dad’s house I’d do-nothing rather than just, self-destruct further than I had in those four unmentionable “Lola” years from 21 to 25; it was unclear which would be more efficient. Doing-nothing or hardly existing at some other odd job, where I was basically a number that logged in and left at the end of the Workday (which is the name of an app for logging hours). I spent hours and hours and hours and hours, doing-nothing. I emptied my mind of its self-contents so thoroughly that in the morning I couldn’t get up. Felt dumb. And that was sort of, bliss, like being lobotomized I’d guess — I did not exist that much at all, hurray, then Covid hit me. It hit ME. I’d be granted unemployment which was a game changer, I could say; yes, yes?

Wasn’t sure if this emotion was better than that other one, grief about a pandemic killing hundreds of thousands [would be millions] of humans. Which feeling was appropriate or not so much.

I turned it all off. Like a soul caught in a mode of A.I., body lost somewhere perhaps even dead: I sacrificed my humanness — just to focus. To get out of bed.

It’s true though absoludamente, I consented to being dumb, I’m assuming that’s how a lot of people get through lousy jobs or three of them, or a tough patch, life — SNAP — a tough year, I may’ve had an edge when it came to next steps. My dad might remind me, when I complained about a coworker making comments about my baggy outfits, not even sure if I imagined it, that “you know that job’s all they’ve got,” basically it would be a bitch-move to judge them too much for being unkind just perhaps. And I felt like, I heard him. I was pretty deadbeat by then but knew I was supposed to like, use this moment and not just, let it go like weed seeds in the wind. Dandelions. Yes. Yes. I felt like I could remember, how not to be very stupid. Didn’t mean I wasn’t dumb, like: I was, I just, could remember. I could remember what it was like to have a mind. To have a body worth fighting for. Worth hanging on.

And that was something to work with, the memories left. So I could act like I wasn’t. I used to be sort of an actress, didn’t I, in that one life, the one that didn’t work out. I used to want to be, therefore didn’t I think?

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In 2020 I got back into my Hermione jeans but not quite like Emma Watson, who could compete — this is where I’m soo lucky so trigger warning if you hate somewhat lucky people (skirrrt) [I’m being 1% sarcastic, no more than that] — the money I’d saved up from unemployment would go toward school back at Columbia where I figured I’d be able to scrape my ass and mind back to a less entropic state, as a student in an academically intensive program. My body, I don’t know. I just felt a lot different toward it. Like maybe I’d just get up and go through the day instead of get up and exercise and take a bath and do the face lotion and stretches and try to reform what was never going to be my claim to respect; there wasn’t a shot in hell. Is this how guys feel, the types of unselfconscious men I was often drawn to, back when I screwed with them. It’s true, I never used to mind me a reasonably unselfconscious straight dude!

Like the gym is for models and actors; everyone else chill.

I’m not saying that’s correct because, it isn’t; being able to take care of your physical health is a privilege, not something to be treated as “vain” or even related at all to appearance — say if you don’t see any difference who gives a f*** — whether it’s at the gym or just at home in your room, it’s good to do that stuff unless, say, it’s making a negative difference (I can understand I guess). 

But the statement “working out is good” is just my opinion, whatevs! I can’t speak about taking care of one’s image [a 21st century first world problem truly] (also a source of multi-generational disjunction) but as a poor girl, who doesn’t know what it’s like to “look” refined, I am on principle strictly opposed to sacrificing your integrity to roam among the hot ones. To survive? That’s another, problem, and a real one. My sister was like “you don’t have to decide,” between body and mind? How bout soul? I guess it’s not a Sophie’s Choice, I’m like — between me and my sister — basically it is though. You’re saved, you’re good. Mom picked you when she kept you in ballet all those years!! Now you’re smarter than me and don’t even know I’m just acting like your sister, from that one life, not an entirely new person reborn.

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“You’re not my real mother, and you’re not my sister,” I’d said repeatedly, looking Alexis Wilcock in the eyes from a hospital stretcher, finally (relieved to be safe on some plane of anti-reality, an island in my head) in care of people who I figured could just see, what was up.

My mom had driven in from New Jersey to make sure I was fine. I’m not sure what she thought.

“I have to be here, because I’m your mom. Why wouldn’t I be,” she’d said.

“You’re not my fucking family, though. (And I don’t know who I am.)”

It had reached that point.

“What do you even mean by that,” my sister had asked earnestly, very calm considering I’d almost charged her an hour ago, when she refused to call the cops for/on me. I’d gotten violent, she told them after that, honestly.

I was mad when I found out, she’d said that: I’m like, they’re not going to understand, Mom would never have told them that. You brat.

I literally threw her onto a couch. Sure enough, they put me on the heavy stuff, the meds. If there is such a thing as karma in this world, I’ve only found access to it by taking accountability for my contributions to relationships that were unhealthy, that is: driven by hate, bitterness, unfair competition, ambition, ambition, ambition. And speaking of relationships, I’d still never quite believed in it for me, seriously beautiful sex. I think I’ve only known something a few keys lower than beautiful. Like way lower. Sex driven by something else. It doesn’t seem to work to just screw someone loosely, unless you sacrifice sensitivity to others. And in effect to oneself. To one’s family, probably them above all though I should speak for myself: there must be a way to be a shiva baby and still get some dick.

All that though, just said, is my concern for Americans imbibed on capitalism’s narrative trends, the subjective realism of it, interpreted as fact. Not better films or something like that. Rap music, which I’ve listened to religiously in place of film-viewing in phases. Lately a little less (I’ve banned myself from Lil Pump, whose videos I did once think were weirdly, well, tremendous). It’s plausible — not judging just trying to understand — some rappers and their disciples aren’t being sensitive [e.g. to family and friends] (though, maybe to like some much younger side ho), ha hi, more deeply sensitive than what’s embedded in the survival skills that brought them to value money and various other flexes because that’s what it takes, to get that far. For all that power, they’re not being sensitive enough.

It’s making listeners dumber, numb.

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But that don’t got to be a permanent thing I don’t think so ay. Just a dumb phase!!!! Poop, scoop. Cat love and fun memes in quarantine, just a phase <3. ur fine. I’ve decided to become a medical professional (even though it’ll be many years before I’m doing it for a reasonable salary) because I’m probably drawn to hospitals and think I’d be able to help some people other than, my self, but sometimes sure I still might go through life like a film writer. And if I were to develop a scene about my love life currently at 27, it would feature me in a desert in all black fabrics including over my face, eyes unconcealed, more focused than they’ve been but still groggy to effectively get through this phase. And because I wouldn’t know which way to go, and because I’d been there so long, I’d reach a point where I’d stop walking aimlessly and start channeling my instinct; including whether it was worth it to even keep trying or whether I might be wise to surrender, to rest and let thirst and heat get the best of me. To die not quite literally. To convey all the above, I might fall to my knees with one hand reaching up to the heavens, just kidding (that would be way, too dramatic). I’d remove my mask and take a few breaths, not too many because I can’t afford to stop moving just yet, and in those few breaths standing still alone I’d consent to just, I guess, being stared at. For better or, detrimentally.

Ultimately my sense is: many Americans are making choices based on what they think they want, which might not be what-or-whom they actually, want. That’s due to ambition, programmed in their heads. Not mired in their bodies, held down — I just don’t think I can pretend, anymore, that the project of getting back into my body is all that disconnected, from being a better human.

“You’re literally not, my mother, and you’re not my sister… so you can leave me alone, and f*** off thanks?”

“I’ll be there tomorrow in the waiting room, after hours,” my sister had said.

“I don’t want mom there. She’s not even my mom, so..”

“It’ll be just me.”

And true to her word the next day, Lex showed up, “you’ll be fine,” she seemed to insist to me. She didn’t say it, just something I felt.

🤪[next piece = FUNNY GIRLS]

 

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