Derek from Third Grade

I had a dream about Derek from third grade where we were adults and hanging out and eventually I just grabbed his face and kissed him for like no reason. A dude from third grade. When I wasn’t even thinking about boys, other than as playmates I could punch sometimes. Like, why this person?

Kinda makes me wonder though; how differently would my life have gone if my family had stayed in Boise, how differently if we stayed in Garden City, or Caldwell, or I stayed in that dorm at PSU longer. If both Derek and I grew up in the same vicinity, would we have eventually dated?!

If life events had enfolded differently, who would be my friend group right now? Or back then? What other people would I have met? How would those connections effect where I went to college or moved to on my own or what jobs I got?

It just makes me think how easy it is for things to change, how flimsy life plans are, and how we are today is just the accumulation of every small moment in our life and the people we ever knew who pushed us further or closer to/from our interests and talents. As an adult, there is more control over who your friends are and where you spend all your time, but as a kid everyone you know is just who you happen to bonk into, and friends are the ones you bonked into more often. What street you lived on and what school and church you went to and what after school thing you were apart of and all the people who got you involved in other places; birthday parties, concerts, recitals, book club, baseball fields. All this bonking around, and whose bonks where had the most effect.

Derek was one of my closest friends in elementary school and I’ve mostly hung out with guys as friends my whole life. Most of my friends in school I met through band in middle school and because I played wind (trumpet players all have cooties). Others I met through being videogames or through mutual loathing of our professor or because someone noticed my Kagome pin. In Idaho, wanted to go to college where all my friends were going, I didn’t care about if it was a good school or not. I moved to Portland halfway through high school, to an Art Academy that didn’t have band in ANY way, shape, or form and lost the time and motivation to play my saxophone. I hated everyone at RAA except a few people and focused on art and writing. I dated douchebags in college, but would the douchebags at BSU or UofI be any different? Would they have traumatised me in the same ways, or not at all? Would I be a plump matron with 3 monkey kids hanging from my arms by now? How different would those past years had gone if my parents had never encouraged me to pick up an instrument or Dad had never gotten me Frogger on PlayStation or had disciplined me more severely when I drew them that beautiful mural on the hallway wall as a kid? And if we hadn’t moved to another state in the middle of high school and I could have actually continue playing sax? What if I was still in Boise for middle school and my friends called band stupid and I never even went for it? Would I have gone to UofI for college instead of PSU? Maybe gone out of state? If my siblings had never been born and my parents actually had money, where would I use that leverage? If I was pushed toward my passion for video games, would I be a making my own games by now? What if I hadn’t moved to Portland? Would I still be devoted to my saxophone or just as meh about it as I am now? Would I have lived in a dorm in a small college town, rather than in the downtown area of a city, having wild dorm parties because theres nothing to do, instead of going on art walks? Would any of these things make a speck of difference anyway? Is there a timeline out there where I am currently married to Derek from third grade with monkeys on my arms?! Think of all the tiny things that could be different about me just because of the all the pushes I got.

Life is like infinite domino effects, the pieces bonk into each other and they fall over and bonk others, and some fall where you think they will, and others fall a little wonkily, and sometimes a domino misses, or just nudge, and maybe a piece flies off the pattern, just all this bonking and pushing in all these crazy directions.

Stupid Derek making me get all thinky about stuff. This just makes me want to message old friends and get a new sax. Now, if I actually go and DO these things, how will life fork from there?! Will I join a jazz band a year from now? Am I gonna reconnect with someone from the past and end up in a business relationship?! WHAT WILL HAPPEN?!

Not that any of the speculation matters, anyhow.



Hate seems like a strong concept. Too strong of one to be taken lightly. A profound concept that is not given to us unless it is really and truly deserved. Not a word to just be thrown around. It requires appropriate understanding and energy to keep and develope it. I don’t think there is a single person on this planet that I dislike enough to say I “hate” them. Even the people who have fucked me up and gave me mental disorders and ruined my life. These people, I want to kill them and cut their faces off in anger and then hang them on the wall like a trophy collection in a dark room that only I know about, but I don’t “hate” them. At least, I don’t think I do. They say when you’re in love, you just know. If I truly hated them, wouldn’t I just know it?

They say love and hate come from the same place in the heart, and are sometimes confused for each other. Am I waiting for that one special person to hate with all my being? Will it be hate at first sight? Will I still want to cut their face off? What does it take to hate someone at all? I’m pretty sure I’m not confusing love with hate when it comes to E. Evidently being given some PTSD isn’t enough for me to hate, but perhaps, if it were a LOT of PTSD I would feel differently. How will I know when its hate? True hate?

When will I meet my Soul Hate?

Fighting the Current

Fighting the current is hard, but I don’t want to just let it take me away…I am stuck, just swimming for my life, swimming in place. I am making no progress and slowly just inching further backwards. 

I see others, they let the current take them, but when they decide to fight, its easy for them! They fly! Why am I stuck? I need to find to summon the willpower, but I don’t have the ability to do even that! Where do I find the means when all my focus it put into the fight?

Is the fight worth it? Everyone says yes, but I see no evidence of this. They all let the waters take them, how can they know? They think letting the current take you IS the fight; they do not know what fighting really is. They think I am fighting against something unnecessary, something that only exists for me, and if I just let go everything will become easy. Some of them fight for whatever lies upriver, but they don’t come back and tell those struggling how to do it. Is continuing the fight worth it? Is it better to let go? Or should I just get the fuck out of this river?

I know I am not making much sense.

To everyone else, I am fighting an invisible wall. I give myself these mental problems and this anxiety by choosing to overthink things and think things the wrong way. They give me advice on how to change that, but I don’t want to change that. This is what makes me me. No one understands the real me, no one accepts it, the real me is a freak who needs to be fixed. Their advice makes me angry. Of course an animal would resist being caged! How can they not see this?! If I said it, they would act like I am being ridiculous. Like I am being crazy to not accept this “wonderful” life I could have if I just give in to the current.

How many times has my father said I am acting crazy? How many times has mom said I’ll feel better once I start doing things properly? And CD? Always trying to control me, even in the tiny subtle ways that normal people don’t notice until it is too late. They think selling myself for tickets into this god-awful system will make everything bad and wrong disappear, because money cures everything, right?!  If I had money, the first thing I would do is fly the fuck away from here.

They mean well, but they’re blind. They want me to join in on their system, because they think it will help me. If I tell them they are wrong, I am crazy. If they loved me, they wouldn’t control me, they would understand and enable me!

Talking to E is helping me realize this. He is different. He understands. He is like a hand reaching out from the shore to help me out of the fucked up river, instead of these others telling me to just let it take me. He won’t try to fix me, he will enable me. If he is able to give me the strength to fight the current, then he will have saved my life.

Strange Muse

Feeling inspired to update here and to write some whimsical unedited free form crap about my feelings. I really need to remember to keep this going. May be crap, but helpful for mental soothing. Was also encouraged to post more online, even anonymously, even on dumb unread blog, ahah. Maybe its the lack of sleep. Inspiration truly is a fanatical mistress; knocking on the door when I am ill equipped to deal with her!

Maybe its because I stuck my head out from the cave, saw a glimpse of the sunshine, and remembered how pleasing it is. Cave still too cozy and safe to want to leave though.

I’ve been feeling like a rock for months. A boulder wedged into a cliff, stuck and about ready to fall and crack to pieces. Can’t leave the house, can’t talk to anyone, barely create. Just a crusty old unproductive rock. But I feel different today. I think a waterfall is coming to unwedge and push away in a blast of water. It’s terrifying. I’m not sure I’m ready for the dam to be broken! May also be false alarm.

How is it possible to fall in love with the black and white shapes of words? Just text? Not even a name or a face to it. This muse comes unexpectedly from an unexpected place, though a muse wouldn’t be as musical if it could be expected. In strange form too, not even physical. No name, no face, no body; just words. Like a ghost whispering through my head at night.

I think I am just under illusions created by my own stupid forlorn heart. Enchanted by a mind that isn’t like the others. I might as well be a puppy, latching onto and following after the first kind gesture after being kicked. Sad, desperate, little puppy. But any spark of life is good, right? So long as I don’t go running blindly after it?

The ghost whispers, desperately seeking help, but it doesn’t care to hear. Any sound pleases it, urges it on. This is bad. Definitely not a good sign. Helping the ghost feels good, too good, but after? It will only be bad when the ghost has moved on. Must remember to not become attached. But right now, basking in the music is nice.

It’s also very confusing. I don’t understand why I like it. Ghosts are cold, unfeeling to anything outside their own form. Yet…what is it, exactly? I am an overemotional, hopeless romantic, enchanted by what? What do cold, logical, unpassionate ghosts see in that? I don’t understand why the ghosts like me, or why I like them. Opposites attract? It has happened before. Drawn to whispers, only to be left behind with my own whispers disappearing in the dark. Can’t let it happen again.

I am happy to say that this rambling has been helpful. The egotisticalness of wanting to say my own words almost makes me cringe, but I suppose that’s the curse of a writer.


Death of a Pixie Girl

Death of a Pixie Girl

Death of a Pixie Girl: Micron Pen and Pencil

Pixie Girls: tiny, circle faced, scene girls with the huge eyes and lots of eyeliner that are taking over the music world. I see them at EVERY concert I go to and all over Hot Topic. I DO NOT UNDERSTAND where they are coming from or why or aklsjdfoisjdlkf. THEY ARE TAKING OVER!

Oh my God. Are they evolved from what I was in high school?

I don’t have anything against them personally, but when you belong to a certain lifestyle and suddenly you are seeing robot clones of the same person EVERYWHERE within that lifestyle, it makes you start questioning all existence and what the essence of humanity is. It has made me very suspicious…WHERE DID YOU COME FROM, ALIEN PIXIE CREATURE?!?

I wonder…ARE these girls clones? Real clones that the music industry has created hordes of to unleash into crowded punk rock and metal concerts to…make them more…awesome-er seeming and popular and attractive with all the cute faces so that more will want to join in on the fad and hit on scene girls and spend money on tickets and merch like some crazy brainwashing advertisement scheme to earn lots of money?!? This idea seemed more eloquent in my head…

I sometimes see these girls at anime and comic book conventions too…usually wearing Bleach and Adventure Time stuff… is this just how all teenaged girls who have obscure interests look like?

The Horror That Was Japanese Class

Last term, I finished Japanese 101. Yes, it was level 1, super n00b, Kindergarten hiragana, basics of Japanese class. And holy crap, it was the most stressful experience of my college life. Seeing the sketch I posted yesterday, the one about the DOOR TO HELL, made me want to rant.

The system that they used to teach us was called “Baptism by Fire” by one of the instructors. He was joking, but I will forever remember that that is exactly what he said about it. Also, we had five instructors, and two professors. It was zero tolerance English, instructors feigning to not understand Engish, completely clear desks except for name plates with our last names, no note-taking. The instructors, whom all except one were Japanese, taught these classes. But there was one day a week where the American professor explained grammar, structure, and the “whys” and “whens” of words in the culture IN ENGLISH. Those days were like HEAVEN. The no-English thing started halfway into the first day of class, after the T.A. told us how the class would work and what our instructors expected from us. We had class every single weekday from noon to 1 o’clock, and had to memorize a list of vocab and some sentence exchanges before every class. Some days we also had to memorize 10 hiragana or kanji in addition to words and sentences, and had to be able to recognize all learned characters, write them down in a Japanese sentence, and read sentences out loud from the overhead projector. Sometimes we simply had to answer the question in Japanese, and that was somehow harder to process. In class, the instructors would simply speak to us. They would hold up signs and objects, ask questions, have us ask each other questions, and put on little performances of everyday situations (like ordering food or having to talk to your boss at work) and the instructor would call on us randomly and frequently to do all these. Every day, we got graded on a score of 1 to 10. I got about 8.5 everyday, because my brain commutes everything super slow (autism!!). The only times I got lower than 8.5 was when our only male Japanese instructor taught the class. Fellow students also noticed this tendency to score lower on days where he was teaching and the theory was because he is just harsher because in Japan (according to fellow student) teachers grade lower on everything to push students to get higher grades. Not sure how accurate that is, or if our instructors followed it. For some reason, I was intimidated by this instructor (Because he was male? Because he was a semi-serious very-Japanese person who only spoke to me in a language I barely understood in the naturally fast way he would speak it to any other Japanese person??). For the one-on-one end of term interview, I kept thinking “please not him, please not him…” Sure enough, it was friggin’ him. CURSE YOU ASHLEY FOR NEEDING TO SWITCH PLACES WITH ME!

This class may not sound that rough for some people, and yes, there were a bunch of very successful people in our class who thought it was a breeze. They didn’t stutter, hesitate or cop-out (at least, most of the time they didn’t), and even though I respected their ambition and (probable) no time left in their days for a social life in addition to their other classes and other whatnot throughout their days, I also kind of hated them and wished they would move up to the higher level class so that the rest of us struggling fools wouldn’t feel so stupid. Luckily I was among the people who were getting it all down, but just by BARELY. It all advanced so fast that if I slacked off even a little I would be horribly behind.

I guess it was a good lesson in discipline at least…

I have Asperger Syndrome, and as much as I hate using that as an excuse for anything, my brain works different! People with Asperger’s, or any kind of autism, take longer to understand the stimuli around them, or just don’t take some of it in at all. First, I have to hear what the instructor said in Japanese clearly in my mind (which usually takes more than one try,  mou ichi do, onegai shimas became my catch-phrase), and then I had to translate it in my head to English, then I had to figure out the normal-person response in English, then translate it to Japanese, and then say it correctly, all while fully aware of the spear-like gazes of my classmates and instructor on me and the knowledge that my ability  and speed affects my grade. If I had a processor in my brain it would have been on fire. I had to sit there in silence for a moment to organize everything in my head. Sometimes I would stumble a bit trying to figure something out, and the instructor would just skip over me and onto the next person. It was extremely frustrating. Instead of having a legitimate brain issue, they just think I’m stupid.

At the end of each class our instructor would bow and say arigato gozaimas, to indicate our class being dismissed, and when that happened everyday it was like a splash of water washing away all of the overheating electrodes in my brain, and I simply felt relieved and exhausted. Arigato gozaimas is now a very calming phrase for me haha. This class was just grueling. I mentioned my little brain issue with the professor, and she told me that I should find a way to cope. COPE?! Bleeesh! I, at least, did not entirely beef the class miserably. I did…decently…

But I don’t regret taking it. I learned a lot and I will definitely continue studying Japanese…just not at PSU…I will try Rosetta Stone or something, to learn in my freetime where I won’t feel so overburdened and rushed and feeling like my GPA is on the line simply because I cannot TALK or think right. The thought of ‘giving up’ really does not sit well with me, so I try to think of it more like ‘accommodate’ even though that kind of sounds worse…BUT either way, I will still keep learning. I feel very pleased with myself when I can read things that are in Japanese in anime and manga, and not have to read the subtitles. WOOT! So I DO enjoy knowing it, at least!

It feels good to get that off my chest. I have been trying very hard to not complain about this class the WHOLE term long…


When I was in grade school the title of “artist” seemed to me a fancy term that, even though I was drawing all the time, didn’t feel I was worthy for. People would call me an artist, and I was like “nawww, artists are super awesome talented people who actually make stuff people want to look at and get money for it!” And I always thought that being a true artist was something that was out of reach for me because a) I was well aware of my own laziness and inability to get determined about anything due to my shit for confidence, and b) I was being told by multiple ‘trustworthy’ adults that ‘artist’ is a job that makes you no money unless you can make it big as an awesome Disney animator or something. So I thought, being an artist is probably not what I should be aspiring to, because I will probably end up as a poor, talentless, unloved loser. So I stuck to drawing on the side, just for fun, a little hobby of mine, just doodles and weird stuff, no real practice or projects or nuthin’.

Then I moved to Portland, and here the name ‘artist’ had completely different connotations than it did in Idaho. Here, artists are everywhere, but people who are artists are big hipster snobs. Or at least that’s the impression when seeing someone at an easel at the waterfront, or are simply looking at someones weird art in a gallery. An artist stigma here is an over-idealistic, super activist who only makes super abstract surreal things out of wood and glitter and toys, and that don’t make any sense to anyone except for the creator who was trying to sell the message “stop polluting.” When I started hearing about THAT type of artist stigma (which is totally not true at all, by the way….it’s only a teensy bit true….) then I was thinking, “Good thing I didn’t stick with that whole lame artist thing, or else everyone would think I was some stuck-up, smarty-pants, hippy jerk-wad person!”

But THEN I was in college for two years. I was studying the sciences. I was going to help cure Alzheimer syndrome, and find the answer to immortality, dig through peoples brains and find out how this weird gross body actually WORKS. But science, though amazing, is HARD! Harder than drawing, and definitely harder than playing videogames all day.

Suddenly, I was in Art class. And also suddenly, I felt happy. Misunderstood, but happy to be given a reason to do something is actually relatively easy for me.

And after some contemplation, I came to the only reasonable conclusion that would help me be happier…

Fuck it.

I’ve always been a drawer and story maker and world creator, so fuck it, I’m going to do what I’ve always done. The thing that is easy for me! I’m going to be AN ARTIST! I’m going to do whatever the heck I want. I’m going to make graphic novels, write zombie stories, write storylines for videogames and Dungeons and Dragons campaigns, design characters for them, and design band albums and t-shirts and skateboard decks, and I will be AWESOME, and the only person who needs to think so is MYSELF.


That is the sound of me sticking my tongue out at everyone who says I shouldn’t be an artist. Mostly my family.

I’ll help the world in my own way, become immortal in the old way, and draw zombies eating my biology professors and hipster art peers’ brains! Creating, for me, is easy, and I am lazy, so easy is the only way I am going to make it through this life. I want to cure diseases, help people, become immortal, but its mostly beyond my abilities, so I give that duty to those who were blessed with a sense of hard work and a perfectly functioning cranium. I can help people in my own way. I already have some ideas…And what do I need money for, anyway besides a tiny hermit house in the woods?

Not really sure why I suddenly wanted to rant about this. Probably because its only recently that I decided to allow myself to actually let myself do what I like, and now, every time I refer to myself as an artist to non-artists, people kind of roll their eyes or get this vacant look on their face, and I am just super attuned to it right now. I AM REBELLING! When I was a kid, I remember “artist” being a perfectly legitimate aspiration for a kid, but then it became an aspiration strictly for kids. Art is almost overrated here in Portland, but its basically the same issue. Feeling very self-conscious about carrying around the huge portfolio around campus….and on the bus…

But its okay, I’m a changed woman. And it’s all thanks to the realization that I have a choice of not giving a fuck, especially towards what people think. YAY, NOT GIVING A FUCK! YAY, ULTIMATE FREEDOM!