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Showing posts from 2015

Closet cleaning, apartment fire and emotional contraband

The ides of October came with a call to action: let go of what no longer serves me. This is definitely not a new concept, but Mindfulness is a tease. She rubs herself against my brain, charming me with promises of present moment awareness just to fly away when the next challenge joins the table. And while the tests of the summer were not completely left behind, it was time to open space for the cooler, crispy breeze of autumn before the leaves turned yellow. Although I wish I could perform open brain surgery in my own head to remove once and for all the stuff that insists of holding on to my thoughts like bloodsucking parasites, I took the easy route and chose to clean my closet instead. The results were astonishing. Fifteen years ago, when I was fresh out of college, I moved to small town in Kansas to work at an advertising agency. Those 11 months spent in that community marked my life in ways that only years later I was able to truly measure the impact they had in the depths of my

Guerilla at the gas station

I would have never stopped at that gas station if I didn’t have the urgency to use an ATM. I would have never driven on that street if the ATMs on the previous two convenience stores I visited were not out of order. But as you may already know, life works in mysterious little ways, making me a strong believer that nothing, zero, nada happens by chance. That being said, for this story to make sense I must recall that earlier that day, around the time the first dose of caffeine was pouring into my brain on my commute to work, I felt a familiar itch: the desire to give birth to sound, the urge to test my full lung capacity, each hidden minuscule artery of it. Out. Loud. Tympanic-membrane-assault kind of sound. It’s a recurrent form of catharsis when I feel that my world is becoming too dull.  Let other drivers think I’m crazy. I’m well beyond that concern by now. I found my own little drug, I’m an addict and I don’t want to be cured. Alicia Keys doesn’t necessarily rock my world, bu

Fried chicken

This is the story of how this author met her husband, written within a couple of days of their first date She woke up that morning with a residual taste of last night’s Alaskan Ale mixed with junk food and a sense of duty: “I must break a sweat to purge that excess of lard out of my system.” Oh, those evasive thoughts, gone in an instant when she picked up her phone and looked at the text message that came in at around 12:30 a.m.: “Do you like fried chicken?” No man had ever asked her that question. Somehow the world felt very light for a moment. Who needs a workout when you can have fried chicken with champagne for lunch with a sweet, nerdy-looking man at a pretentious place that calls itself a “wine dive”? She took the morning for herself, a morning of spur of the moment, no-obligation type activities. Life was becoming too consumed with them both at work and her personal life. The sense of being trapped in her own freedom was extrapolating the barriers of normality. That mo

The cat and the road

If I had arrived three minutes earlier, I would have seen the exact moment that the murderous car took the life of the majestic feline on the intersection of old Houston and gentrification. I still don’t know what I would have done: would I have chased it? Would I let it go free from impunity and guilt? The blood was still fresh and warm. An eyeball was completely removed from the eye socket.   His jaw was wide open, frozen in a scream of terror with his little sharp teeth echoing the shapes of the downtown Houston buildings in the backdrop. The cat, tabby and gray, looked exactly like mine and this thought brought shivers to my spine. I parked my car in front of the crime scene. A man with his name written on his baby blue shirt holding a bottle of Coors Light stood still looking at the corpse. It was so fresh its soul still hadn’t had time to process it moved to a different realm of existence. I rolled down my window. “Is it still alive by any chance?” was the first question t

Yesterday was not a day for the world to end

Yesterday didn’t feel like a good day for the world to end. It didn’t feel like a day to go completely wild 100 miles per heartbeat. I wasn’t either sad or moved or ecstatic. I was actually kind of numb. So no, yesterday couldn’t be a day for the world to end. Sweat flourished out of my pores, some drops thicker than others, neither fear nor anxiety. It was just a plain hot and humid day, and kind of ordinary, too. It was a day I went house hunting, and you can’t go house hunting on the day the world will end. It was late afternoon under a golden sunlight, central time, when I asked myself if I’d go to heaven or if I’d go to hell. After two seconds I realized that either place is just too harsh for me and purgatory may be too close to real life. So no, because of that I knew that yesterday couldn’t be the day for the end of us. It was my niece’s 15th birthday, and you can’t deny a girl the pleasures of celebrating her rites of passage. Yesterday couldn’t be the end of times because

The web

When I moved to my new home a tiny little spider decided to build her web in my front yard.   Her silky thread expanded from the cypress tree to the nearby bushes, almost imperceptible except when the sun rays caught the exact angle of the carefully sewn fabric. Otherwise, for most of the time the little spider seemed to hang freely in space, defying the laws of gravity. I liked that optical illusion right there in my newly acquired front lawn. Each day I would get back from work and observe her resting after a day’s labor. Each day her web seemed more beautifully crafted, such stunning geometric precision that I confess I was slightly jealous. I once tried cross stitching a gift for a friend’s newborn, but I failed miserably. It’s not that the little clown I weaved wasn’t cute: it’s that the reverse was a complete mess. My mother always said that you know a good weaver when the reverse is flawless. My mother is a perfectionist and even though I’m a Virgo with perfectionist tendenci