If you were in my skin right now, you'd know–very literally in your bones–what I know right now: that sugar is a drug, a toxin. And detox is a bitch. Achy, anxious, tired, starved–how I am feeling right now.

Attention span is shot, words flocking out away from me, in wider and wider gray arcs. I don't know anything right now. Mind is racing, but I need to cut this loneliness. Some of the rubble in my head:

1) Guilt. I am supposed to be back in my apartment. Instead, I am hiding out in bed at my folks', just like a little kid. Part of me just wants to get back there and get back to my work and my regimen. Part of my is scared to go back to all that work and silence.

2) Humility. In the slackerdom of these past three weeks, I have read–in some cases reread–some super books: J. L. Carr's wise, golden A Month in the Country; Roy Peter Clark's Writing Tools; A. S. Byatt's and Ignes Sodre's Imagining Characters;Arundhati Roy's The God of Small Things. Of much lower quality, Richard Russo's Straight Man and Helen Fielding's Bridget Jones's Diary. The Carr was sensational. Then, it put me in mind of Penelope Fitzgerald's early books, which are some of my favorites. I don't feel like much a writer these days. Then, I'm not.

3) This is the first holiday season during which I can honestly say I've had no nostalgic, wistful thoughts about past loves. The salvific power of time, I guess. Thing is, I sort of miss those feelings. Not that I was still carrying a torch for any of those guys. They are in the past and as high-quality as they all were (one groaning exception), I know that my current guy is the whole package. Still, there's something nice about raking over the embers of your past and finding the occasional live coal. No more.

4) I've decided to take a gander at the Pepys's Diary website everyday, as I hope to keep a more consistent diary this year. I envy Sam's bravado and wonder.

5) I would kill right now for some chocolate.

6) I can't quite get over New Year's Eve. J and I went to a "party" at his cousin's place, where I was generally harassed about not having finished my dissertation yet and–the frikking worst–was mightily upbraided by the cousin's wife for an off-hand comment I made. It was a minor remark, and in my more educated, urban circle would have been occasion for a chuckle. The woman in question is a very brittle, secretive person, however, and flew off the handle. Well, not at first. At first, she pretended she hadn't heard me. Then, a few minutes later, when I had more or less forgotten about it, she said, quite indignantly, that actually, she had no idea whatsoever what I was talking about. Then, a few drinks later, she lit into me–in a strange, out-of-the-side-of-her-mouth way. Instead of saying, "Wow, I don't think you should have said that," as I would have done if I felt as insulted as she clearly did, she very confusedly accused me of being nosey, lacking manners and morals, and just generally undervaluing that all-important entity, the American Family. I honestly didn't know what she was on about at that point, and judging from the chop-change sentences, neither did she. It was really wild, being censured by a racist, classist bimbo whose main passtimes are complaining, shopping, and maintaining her 1990s coiffure and whose idea of an ethical act is to buy the less expensive sandals. Definitely awkward but dismissible. Less so was the argument I had with J about this whole thing on the way home. I can only put it down to too much booze, since we both agree that cousin's wife is a truly nasty piece of work and an idiot to boot.

7) Just generally feeling lonely and out of place.

8) I am dirty. Seriously. I haven't showered in two days. Gross.


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