A General Feeling Of Worthlessness.

TRIGGER WARNING FOR SEXUAL ASSAULT/DEPRESSIVE THOUGHTS.

It’s been a weird month. On the one hand, I’ve been playing open mics at this one bar often enough that I’ve started to get to know the people who frequent it. On the other, I’ve been having depressive episodes again and I was assaulted outside of work.

The thing I find most frustrating about having a depressive episode is that I’m self-aware enough to know exactly what it is but am completely unable to stop it. I can be sitting in my kitchen having tea and suddenly feel like there’s absolutely no reason for me to be alive and I should probably just go ahead and kill myself. Or I can be on the way to work and think about how easy it would be for me to get off at the next station and jump in front of a train. No note, no warning, no explanation.

I feel like I’m not a part of life. Like my existence affects no one and means nothing. There will always be someone else to fill whatever tiny void I might leave behind me. Even my family would eventually heal and move on. Sometimes I draft suicide notes to leave just in case one day the urge proves to be too much. I usually end up throwing them out because I wouldn’t want anyone to find the note and think I was actually planning something.

Everyone I know seems like they’re a part of something. I feel like it takes a lot of effort for me to even put clothes on and venture outside. The things I love seem to lose their flavor and it’s a massive chore for me to do anything except lay down on my couch and watch Netflix. I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately, and I’ve narrowed it down to self-worth.

I don’t feel like I’m worthy of anything.

I was assaulted by a drunk dude outside my workplace. I was on a break around 8:30PM, standing outside smoking, when he came up to me and started talking. He was being aggressive, yelling at women on the street to keep their “head and tits up” and calling them cunts when they didn’t respond. He asked me why women were bitches. I was afraid of him, so I agreed with him even though it made me feel sick to my stomach not to stand up for my fellow ladies. When he got closer and put his arm around me, I shut down. Parts of my childhood came back and I remembered that in order to avoid angering the people who assaulted me when I was a kid, I would let my body go still and try to think about something, anything else to avoid facing what was really happening.

He seemed to think I was comfortable with him in my space, so he kissed me. He also buried his head into my neck and slid his arm down to my waist. Inside, there were alarm bells going off and I was frantic but I was so terrified of this stranger that I stood completely still. When he called his friend over and I was flanked by two strange men, I finally snapped into action and went back inside my cafe.

“You’re just going to leave me out here?” one of them cried.

“Sorry,” I explained. “I have to go back to work.”

That’s right, folks. I apologized to the man who touched me without permission.

I thought I would be fine when I reached the relative safety of my workplace. I wasn’t. I went into a full scale panic attack, complete with cold chills and shaking. I wanted to cry but I couldn’t bring myself to. I began to feel like these things happen to me because I deserve them. The little kid who was shoved into a basement and assaulted eighteen years ago deserved it. The laps I was forced to sit on, the hands that went places I was too young to have discovered yet — I deserved all of  it. Because I’m worth nothing.

But even as I write this, I know intellectually that it isn’t true. Bad things happen to people who don’t deserve it. Nobody deserves to have something like this happen to them, no matter who they are or what they’ve done. I don’t deserve to be assaulted, or beaten, or treated like shit and I didn’t ask for any of this. But emotionally, in the twisted labyrinth that passes for my mind, it feels very true.

I know it could have been much worse with the stranger outside my cafe. I’ve been in much worse situations before. But that doesn’t make it OK and it doesn’t make my reaction afterward any less valid.

So it’s been a weird month. In spite of my depressive thoughts and dark moments, I remain hopeful that things will get better. Maybe soon I’ll feel ready to seek help for this.

Announcements & News.

First off, let me say I’m sorry for being a horrible blogger. The only posting I did in June was re-posting articles from Wait(er) Magazine because I thought they might be lost forever in the shakeup.

Then I found out that something was being cooked up all this time!

Allow me to introduce the brand new, free as can be Wait(er) app! It’s on iTunes, you can get it for Android, and then you can read all the sexy service industry articles right on your phone for literally zero dollars.

JUST CLICK HERE TO GET IT!


Second of all, I haven’t been writing much at all because I’ve decided to focus the majority of my energy into making music. Did you guys see Jim Carrey’s speech at Maharishi University? Because you should. It completely inspired me to conquer my stage fright so I’ve been writing, recording and hitting open mic nights to get performance experience. If I’m going to fail, I’m going to do it on my terms doing something I love.

Watch his speech below, in full, if you’ve got the time.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V80-gPkpH6M


I’ve also got tons of things on my plate right now, aside from my day job, recording and performing. I promise I won’t completely disappear. This blog is going to be going through some changes, but I want to go ahead and thank those of you who choose to stick with me through this leg of my journey.

You can also check out MY OFFICIAL SITE for the latest stuff I’m messing around with. :)

“The Wild Bunch” – Wait(er) Magazine

The Wait(er) magazine website is going through some changes and a couple of my articles have been taken down. In the interest of keeping them out there and getting as many people as possible to read them, I’m reposting them here. This one was originally published in November 2013.


Much like the ensemble cast of your favorite 90s sitcom, every cafe has a collection of well-known and well-loved characters. The folks you see behind the counter — expertly folding steamed milk into heart and leaf shapes, pouring coffee into your cup with one hand while magically brewing and grinding with the other, even changing the 500lb grinds garbage — are all real people with real lives outside the tiny world in which you see them. But after nearly seven years of coffee wench life, I’ve noticed a trend in the types of people generally attracted to working in cafes. Let’s have a closer look at the barista in its natural habitat.

READ MORE!

“A Flash Of Yellow” – Wait(er) Magazine

The Wait(er) magazine website is going through some changes and a couple of my articles have been taken down. In the interest of keeping them out there and getting as many people as possible to read them, I’m reposting them here. This one was originally published in August 2013.


Before the sound of coffee beans plunging to their deaths and the incessant queries of customers requesting half-sweet-soy-no-foam-no-whip-extra-hot caffe mochas and then changing their mind after you’ve painstakingly crafted their beverage, there is peace in my cafe. We open at six, so baristas are scheduled to begin work at five-thirty. Thanks to temperamental public transit schedules, I arrive at five. I let myself in, enjoying the emptiness and silence broken only by my footsteps across the still-immaculate floor. The coffee brewers loom behind the counter like sleeping giants and the partially dismantled espresso machines are waiting patiently to be reassembled and awoken for a day of pulling shots and steaming milk. I turn the oven on as I walk by and it roars to life. Like me, it also needs thirty minutes to fully awaken and embrace the day.

GET THE FREE APP NOW TO READ MORE!

How To Burn A Bridge.

My first piece for Ben Gresik and Jason Woudsma’s brainchild writing collective The Prosers went live this morning. I’ve been half-shitting myself all week because I’ve never written something so personal and revealing and had it shared publicly before. But I’m proud of it, probably more proud of it than anything else I’ve put out into the world. So it would mean the world to me if you’d stop by the site and give it a read. While you’re there, you should check out the other stories that have been posted since the site went live. They’re incredible.

READ “HOW TO BURN A BRIDGE” HERE.

Behind The Cushion: A Diary Of Couch Surfing.

Sofa, couch, chesterfield… there are a lot of names to describe a piece of furniture that’s been around since 2000 BC. Once used only by the very very posh, you’d be hard-pressed to find a dwelling these days that doesn’t have one. I’ve spent a lot of years sleeping on other people’s couches, so I’ve come to appreciate a long couch with deep cushions.

I spent Wednesday night at the Imperial Pub in Toronto with some of my best friends. There were pitchers of Moosehead and couches and enough laughter that I couldn’t breathe and started hiccuping. (My friends are truly fucking hilarious.) We stayed out late enough that my only option back to my apartment was the dreaded night bus, so my darling friend (and fellow writer) Carolyn offered to let me crash at her place.

She has a wonderful couch.

Being 5’9″ has its challenges when it comes to lounging about on furniture. Sleeping on a tiny couch means folding your legs up or draping them over the sides and cutting off all circulation so when you wake in the morning, your only options are amputation or an hour of that pins-and-needles feeling. Sleeping on one of those modern leatheresque dealies means any exposed skin will inevitably become molded to the fabric and any time you roll over it’s the sofa equivalent to a band aid. Not to mention it sounds like you’re ripping monstrous farts all night whenever you make the slightest movements.

No, the best couches are soft, and the cushions seem to wrap around you as you sink into them. They’re warm and reflect your own body heat back to you, keeping you cozy but not too hot.

I spent months sleeping on my sister’s couch. Her first one folded out into the world’s most uncomfortable futon, complete with a crack down the middle that longed to sever your spinal cord if you hit just the right angle. The couch she has now is fancy and expensive and every time I make the trip to Mississauga to see her I actually look forward to sleeping on it, even though it means I have to listen to EVERY SINGLE KARAOKE SONG going on at the bar downstairs. Worth it just for that couch, says I.

My mom’s couch is almost long enough to be called comfortable, but if I tuck my feet up over the arm, I can manage to sleep on my stomach. She always offers to let me sleep in her bed with her, but I’m just more comfortable when I can fling my limbs around and her couch is firmer than her bed.

Sometimes, even though I have a perfectly good bed, I will sleep on my own couch. I did the same thing when I was a teenager. When my family first moved, my mom and sister had beds but I slept on cot mattresses from my uncle’s fire station. They were thin and even with two of them I could feel the floor, so I would sometimes creep downstairs and sleep on our couch. Eventually I did get a bed, but I would still sneak out every couple nights and fall asleep in the living room with the TV on.

Having a comfy couch is important, especially when your friends drink too much and live too far away from downtown to go home.

 

My dream couch, clearly.

My dream couch, clearly.

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