Anger Mismanagement

Yesterday I particpated in a video shoot about female climaxes for gasm.org. My friend Jamye was moderator, posing questions about vibrators and masturbation, fantasies and female ejaculation. It was pretty fun. Plus I’ll do anything for Jamye. Or for 50 bucks!

The panel was supposed to include a variety of women and, for one comprised of only six, it was a success: ages ranged from 21 to 52 (me), married and single, and there was one woman of color. Our answers varied even more than who – or what – we were. One woman explained that she experiences her orgasms as colors. Others made allusions to threesomes and same-sex experimentation. The 21-year-old was — hmm, how to put this nicely? — the most vocal. When she cut off the quietest woman (for about the tenth time) by blurting, “I love to be the star! The center of attention!” I thought that quiet girl was gonna smack her. I sure would’ve liked to. And when the words “as you get older” actually came out of her mouth, in the context of “as you get older, your interest in sex decreases,” I swear, I almost lost it. Instead, I put my hands up and said, “Wait, wait just a minute here,” and disabused her of that notion. She back-pedaled, explaining that what she meant was “over time,” as in “over time, with one partner, your interest may decrease.” I’ll buy that. But again, coming from someone barely out of high school, it was a little difficult to swallow. When I asked Jamye what she thought of the shoot, she, too had been irritated with the youngster and said she felt compelled to let her know. I didn’t think it would be worth it.

Last night, as we drunkenly bumbled home from a long day of that shoot followed by her ex-boyfriend’s book party (and after telling me that I should give every blind date “at least three chances”) Jamye told me that people are afraid of me because I come off so angry. I suppose I do. It isn’t conscious. And I try not to be. I know people often take what I say way too seriously, hear me as more forceful than I mean to sound.

The gig I worked last weekend went well. I jumped in the second I got there, asking a woman who looked harried if I could help her before I’d even been told what to do. I elegantly solved a problem, efficiently ran a few errands and generally made myself useful. I wasn’t a whiner. And I don’t think anyone experienced me as angry. People I’m close to may see me that way but that’s mostly because, well, ’cause I’m being myself with them… I guess once you get to know me, you see my caustic side. But not everyone does. Sigh.

My sister and my mom both firmly believe that I am terminally unemployable. That I’ve been unable to keep myself from telling off every boss I’ve ever had. I don’t suffer fools gladly and I suck at faking how I feel, so if I think you’re an asshole, you’ll know it. Granted, it’s difficult to work for someone an idiot. But most of my bosses have been worthy of my respect.

Much of my anger comes from finding myself out of step. I feel like I’m perpetually ahead of the culture curve. A decade after I was doing something, it comes into vogue. Or gets good press. And becomes profitable. Maybe I just don’t have the right stick-to-it-ive-ness. Or the focus. Or perhaps I just get bored easily. But tell me, am I wrong to hope for one well-placed supporter? One person to “champion” my book proposal(s)? Advocate for me in a job situation? Is everyone too afraid, worried that my misplaced anger will cause me to implode?

That’s what I’m assuming. So here I sit, laptop on my lap, researching self-publishing sites and ready to do it on my own. I’ve stopped applying for jobs. And I won’t be expecting any favors. Fuck everyone else. Ya hear me? FUCK EVERYONE ELSE! How’s that for anger?

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3 responses to “Anger Mismanagement

  1. “…people are afraid of me because I come off so angry. I suppose I do. It isn’t conscious. And I try not to be. I know people often take what I say way too seriously, hear me as more forceful than I mean to sound.”

    I might second Jayme’s observation, if I may. You are a potent kvetcher and tearer of duplicate assholes, and until one gets to know you and interpret your decibels for what they really are, you do tend to come off as perpetually perturbed, disappointed, pissed off, and a little too damned much to handle. Thankfully, I found myself on the fast track to Abbyland from jump, and I know your tender underbelly just as well, I know that beneath your hard spikey old lady shell is a deeply sensitive, highly insightful, and all too easily wounded teenager.

    You give me a lot of courage, Abby, that passion isn’t something I necessarily need to abandon through the years. I, too, find myself more often cantankerous and bitchy as I move forward, as little and large irritants which I have been able to focus away from become only increasingly unignorable. But in the ways that matter most, and to those who love me most, I will forever be a swooning teenage jerk in all the best possible ways.

    So yeah, screw the rest of the world; it’s the people who see past one’s bullshit to the real deal that ultimately matter, and you never know when you’re going to run into one of those best friends you haven’t met yet. And one of them might have some money and believe in your dreams just as much as you do. Until then, yes you can do it on your own! Why not?

    Persevere, bitch, stick with your colors, they suit you.

  2. Abby,

    You know I love you and Alex, I love what you said. Right on. Fuck what I said Abby, and “screw the rest of the world; it’s the people who see past one’s bullshit to the real deal that ultimately matter, and you never know when you’re going to run into one of those best friends you haven’t met yet.”

    Abby, You are always more than slightly ahead of the curve, and for those of us blessed to be in your life, and those of us that get the chance to know you, we know you as one of the most wonderful, intelligent, HILARIOUS woman in the world. You’re the woman who has introduced me to a life I would never have imagined and who continues to inspire me with her wit and tenacity. And I love your stories!

    All I want is for you to succeed. You deserve it. You deserve it more than most, although I guess everyone deserves what they want. I just want to see you get it. It’s crazy that it hasn’t happened yet. I find it irritatingly annoying, as I did that 21 year old girl.

    I know things got heated (esp. around the three date part) which I still of agree with (let’s agree to disagree)…irregardless, you’re magic. You and that little dog too.

    xoxox

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