Monday, October 11, 2010

Odin Wears a Seatbelt

Today I did something I never thought I’d do. I reached out of my tiny little brain and made contact with someone I thought I’d spend the rest of my life without. Might still, but today I sent a message into the abyss for the sole purpose of being social and “over it” and whatever else I was trying to prove. In all honesty, I hope to hear back. I hope for good news. I hope this contact turns into a positive experience and confirms for me on one tiny level that I’m moving forward and not backward. I’ve been in a panicked spinout all day wondering if I did the right thing. After all, if these people (any of them) wanted to get back in touch with me, they’d already have written me. Right? I’m the coward, right? So the brave ones should like, reach first… right? Right. Well, that’s the bullshit answer I tell myself when I’m in a particularly savage downward spiral and today I wasn’t having any of it. So yeah. Fingers Crossed.

In the fog of all that, I started to think about my other friends… the ones I know in my NOW life. The friends I have today who know the new me and the real me and have no patience for the trodden-down self loathing idiot I was in High School. The good ones. One of them needs a very special something and I’m going to put in my two cents. So I started thinking about those two cents. Hard. How on earth can I go about making this happen for her?

“You can’t.” Came a voice from my still empty passenger seat, now groaning under a frightful weight.

“Bullshit.” I replied, turning down track 14 on my Gogol Bordello CD. “If anyone can, I can. You’ve seen it before. You were THERE for gods’ sakes.”

“But it wasn’t you, there, was it?” Came the voice.

“Let’s don’t get tied up in semantics, okay? You know what I mean.” I said. The silence echoed volumes of agreement. He did know. And there I was. As I was applying my breaks in rush hour traffic to allow a rusty white Yugo into the shoulder-to-shoulder freeway before me, my utterly empty passenger seat was now very much occupied by a very imposing Odin. Missing eye and all. I had been granted my audience. “Timing, dude.” I secretly thought to myself. He chuckled in a grandfatherly way and motioned forward as the cars before us began to accelerate a little.

The silence became pregnant as I tried to string my thoughts together in as respectful a manner as possible. You don’t just ask the Allfather “how’s the family” after all…

“You’re doing fine.” Came the voice from nowhere. I almost cried. “You’re pretty weird, but you’re fine. What’s wrong with that?”

I had to bite down hard on my cheek to sober up. “I don’t know. I’m just tired of feeling like I’m the only robin in a world full of eagles I guess.”

“It’s a hard road you chose, isn’t it?”

“Well yeah, but it’s not like I was getting anywhere on the other one either. I’m way better off here, on this one.” And I meant it. Startlingly so.

“I like your purple hair, too, by the way. It makes sense.”

“Thanks.” A compliment like that was not cheaply won. I choked up immediately. Traffic slowed to a halt again. “I need to ask a favor, for a friend.”

“Am I to do something or tell you the outcome of something?”

Feeling immediately sheepish, I bit my lip. The only way about it was by burying it in diplomacy. “She really needs a break. She’s a good person. They’re very, very strong people.”

Another growling chuckle flooded the vehicle and I could tell I was being toyed with.

“I’ll put in a good word. What else?”

“Don’t waste his time.” I scolded myself. I wanted desperately to ask if everything was going to be okay, but I knew all too well the lengths he, himself, had gone to acquire such knowledge and it was an insufferable insult to expect something like that for free. Even a tiny fraction of it.

“Your saga will be a long one.” Came the answer I had not asked for.

“How can you be sure?” came my knee-jerk reply. I regretted the words immediately after they fell from my lips.

He nicked his head in my direction, I could feel the stare of his single, ice blue eye upon me. A leathery, hot hand brushed my cheek.

“I very much hope it is.” Was the last thing I heard.

Okay. That was the only word in my head for at least 20 minutes as I focused hard on driving my vehicle safely home and into my garage. “okay.”

Turning off the engine, I stepped out of the car, into the house, picked up my cat and gave her a big hug. The rest of the gods waited with baited breath in my living room. “Okay” I told them, helplessly. Thor patted me stoutly on the back. “Good” he said.

It was time to get back to work.

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