Mar 26, 2010


Since I was bitching that I was blocked, woe is me, what am I to do and all that bullshit, I decided to write about one of the most amazing men I have ever met and kill two birds with one stone, if he doesn’t inspire me, nothing will and that way I bring attention to my little circle of readers to ALS.

I will be forever humbled by my former boss; he is currently suffering from ALS (Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis) better known as Lou Gehrig’s Disease and has remained determined, sweet, humorous and more than anything hopeful. Hopeful that if maybe not for him, but for those who will get sick in the future there will be a cure of this terminal, debilitating and simply horrible disease.

To learn more:

I met MM when I was twenty years old and miserable. I was working at McDonald's, my ass kept getting bigger because I had to eat two of my daily meals at work and I was getting spider veins on my legs from standing on my feet for 10 hours a day. He was like a knight in shining armor. His wife loved my mom who worked with her, cleaning her house and talking care of her elderly parents and knowing how badly I hated my job she had put the little bug on her husband’s head to hire me as a trainee appraiser since he was losing one in the office.

I was given the opportunity to interview and I showed up, greasy and nervous to the office. If I had known what I know now of him I wouldn’t have been nervous at all, but since I didn’t know him I was shaking, wishing this could be true and I could work in an office, with working air conditioning, away from oil burns and more importantly where there was a chair.

He took me in under the wings of his company and kept me there for as long as he could. I have never met a man like him and I don’t think I ever will. MM is the smartest man in my acquaintance, he has a big heart, a willingness to help others, an amazing sense of humor, an even temper, awesome stories to share and treated each and every one of us like family. He used to brag about me to his friends and colleagues about how smart I was and how good my English was even though I had only been in the country for a few years.

I spent five years almost six working for him and they were unforgettable years full of laughter and praise, full of working late when we procrastinated because we spent a too long lunch hour talking about Scotland and smuggling him coffee that his lovely wife didn’t want him drinking. When MM got diagnosed we were so utterly ignorant about the disease that we didn’t even worry. It wasn’t until the time started passing and he started losing weight that I went online to research. “Terminal” is a word no one ever wants to hear, but no matter where I went that’s what it said. ALS is a terminal disease. We, the people that worked for him, his family, friends, everyone was heartbroken. Why, how could this happen to a man like him? I’ve had years to digest it and still refuse to believe it.

Each year in March we March, we walk to raise money, awareness and to spend some sunny time with friends and family who need something to hold onto, who for that one moment can look at the horrible disease with something else than fear and dread and with maybe a little bit of hope. Hope that a cure will be found, hope that a reason behind the disease will be discovered, and hope that when the time comes they won’t be alone.

There are no survivors in this walk, there are no brave people telling their story. It’s not like cancer which at times thankfully can be overcome. There are just people facing their death and still unwilling to give up.

If that is not inspiring I don’t know what is.

So tomorrow at 9 am I will be along with MM and his family and friends and we’ll walk and talk and catch up with the ones we haven’t seen since the last walk and ignore the reason why we are there and concentrate only on MM and be happy that maybe tomorrow there’ll be a cure.

Mar 25, 2010


That phrase always sounded too conceited to apply to me. I don’t consider myself a writer even though that’s how Dear Husband describes my profession, as if I made money of it or something. I cannot stop categorizing it, when he brings it up I usually answer to people’s questioning glances with a self conscious shrug or explain that I am a “frustrated writer” or a “wannabe writer” or “would like to publish in the future”.

I have yet to stand up and say “I am a writer”. What I always say is: “I want to be a writer”. I always feel such jealousy when watching the SAG Awards (Screen Actors Guild) and the actors stand there and say “I’m an Actor”. Not because I have wanted to be an actor, what I envy is their total confidence in their place in life, such confidence in their profession. They say it with such ease, with such relish, with such a lack of self-consciousness, because they know they are actors.

I wish I could do the same, shake someone’s hand and say I am a writer, not only for the privilege of having published work but also when moments like this hit me I can say, “Oh, sorry I am suffering from writer’s block” and then I can pick up some destroying addiction or bad habit, or start acting crazy like some tortured artist soul and start drinking absinth and doing opium.

I do not have the privilege of that. I cannot say I have writer’s block. I have wannabe writer’s block. That’s what I am suffering from. I don’t know if is the way this year started, with death and legal drama, or maybe is just adjusting to married life, full of you do the laundry, no you do its, or maybe is simply that I am blocked and I need to acknowledge it.

I have NEVER been blocked before; writing has always been like a painful release for me. It has always been an escape just like reading and shopping is. Some people clean, some others work out, I read, or write or shop, it is scary to find myself without one of my outlets. I have always been able to turn to it when I am feeling overwhelmed by emotions, when my head and chest are like a pressure cooker and putting stuff in paper releases all that contained steam. It is almost like peeing when you are so damn close to peeing your pants, and then you sit and finally let go and the relief is delicious and painful and so good it makes your eyes tear up a little and your skin break in goose bumps and you let go a heartfelt "aaaaahhhhhh"

Maybe that’s what is happening, my life is pretty normal at the moment. Work is going well, Dear Husband and I are getting along and happy as always, Zoey isn’t misbehaving and aside from a scary moment of Max taking a kitty bath on my glass of drinking water life has been pleasantly uneventful.

Maybe mild emotions are not enough for writing, maybe ecstasy, sheer happiness, utter misery, and overwhelming confusion is the only way to inspiration. Maybe sharp flavors are needed for a recipe of witty words on paper.

After doing some research (my answer to everything) I found most bloggers suffering from the same malady were feeling what I was feeling, a complete and total lack of something interesting to say, nothing to add, nothing to elaborate on. I guess we are in the same team; we are of the school of thought that unless you have something interesting to say you might as well just keep quiet.

At the moment I am happy, content, comfortable and relaxed. If it takes writer’s block to retain this feeling then I am willing to go through it for a while.

Mar 3, 2010


Maybe Canada will want me.

That’s all I could think about when the whole Canada vs. U.S.A hockey band wagon started. Suddenly everyone in Facebook was talking about kicking Canadian ass and most of them didn’t even know how to call the disk they hit with the sticks (I learned it’s called a puck).

As a U.S.A “resident” (I use the term loosely since the U.S.A doesn’t really want me here and I am at the moment merely an uninvited guest) I felt I should root for them to win. I wanted them to win the figure ice skating competition and the skiing and all the other events that I have no care for, like curling. But once it came to a face to face competition between the place I call home and the place that seems more and more apparent will be my home in the future, I felt somewhat divided.

In almost two months I will reach my 8th anniversary in the country. Almost half the amount of time I lived in Venezuela. I am not really Venezuelan, I am not really Colombian since I lived there only for 3 years and I am not a U.S. anything. I am homeless, landless, kind of like Jewish people, without a country to call their own, sans all the tragic history.

My lawyer told me that I should not despair, that there are people who had been in the country without a legal status for 15, 20, 30 years and the funny thing she meant it as an encouragement! All I could hear was, “You could have 22 more years of this” and believe me, I love this country, I love this place and the people I’ve been lucky to meet and call friends, but I do not love it enough to beg and crawl for 22 more years.

Maybe there is a reason why the man in the sky does not want me here; maybe there is some sort of fate, some sort of path I have to follow that does not involve the land of the free and home of the brave.

I never thought this would happen but I am actually indifferent about my fate. I am indifferent about what will happen. There is absolutely nothing I can do to change it and I can either go crazy with the helplessness or I ignore it and let the chips where they may.

I realized yesterday that I am all alone in this. No matter who will be affected by my removal, husband, family, friends, the reality is it involves just me, only me, yours truly alone. I would be the one sitting in some cell if they were to deport me, I would be the one who would be kicked out of here like a criminal. I guess I would go through with it with my chin up and my nose in the air and with all the dignity I could muster, but what shred of dignity can you hold onto when you are wearing a jumper in neon orange and are being herded into a plane with equally unfortunate people clad in the same ugly orange that does not benefit anyone’s complexion?

It is lonely business indeed. Like death. People want to not die alone, have someone there, but death is lonely, it involved one person and one person alone, nobody else goes with you, it affects only the person dying. No support will make a difference.

Depressing shit if you ask me. But like I said I am feeling beyond fear, beyond depression, as if it was happening to someone else and not me. I feel unconnected, watching it happen, watching affect my life but also if I was floating ahead watching while this happens to my person.

So what if they do kick me out? What if my process hits one more of the thousands of snags it keeps hitting? What if I end up back in Venezuela with no money, no prospects and no wish of being there anymore? What if I lose the one home I have known for almost a decade?

I don’t know. I have tried my best. I have done all I can, I can be accused of many things, but never that I didn’t tried hard. There is nothing else for me to do but await my fate and go with flow.

It is scary at times, when I feel like some little speck of dirt in a raging river, being carted along for a ride outside of my control, not knowing where I’ll end up and without any hands or place to hold onto, no haven to hide into and nothing to lean on.

I guess all I can do is concentrate on the good things that may come from me not being here. Maybe I was never supposed to be here in the first place. Maybe I don’t belong yet because I was never meant to belong here. Maybe I have been forcing a square peg in a round hole.

Who knows, there’s nothing I can do but wait and see.