I was riding the train home from Middletown, New Jersey today, up along the coast of New Jersey, through marshlands, through early suburban development, now rustic looking, through faded industrial cities. The sky was grey and overcast and I was listening to Wilco's "Yankee Hotel Foxtrot," feeling the album in a way that I did seven, eight years ago when I was obsessed by the thing, and was getting quite moved on this train ride, plastic bag full of leftovers by my feet that my mom had sent home with me. I had been in a hurry to get out of that house this morning, was bored and felt uncomfortable. I thought about that, about my distance from my family now, about how much I enjoyed holidays as a kid when they were big extended family affairs, but now they are depressingly quiet, my mom's husband saying all of one sentence to me while I was there, that being if I wanted any more coffee.
And so I felt a bit lonely, leaving that place in New Jersey while the weather was so grey, passing ghost towns of what used to be prosperous cities, trash strewn by the side of the tracks, an unbelievable amount of mattresses, me wondering how they ever got there. I was reading Don DeLillo's "Midnight in Dostoevsky", which is an incredible short story, and which contained series of lines such as this that had me pausing and taking in the scenery passing outside my window while I contemplated the thing I just read:
"At times, abandon meaning to impulse. Let the words be the facts. This was the nature of our walks—to register what was out there, all the scattered rhythms of circumstance and occurrence, and to reconstruct it as human noise."
I got home a few hours ago and called Diego, really wanting to see his face, to feel connected to someone strongly after a day just spent wondering about the extent of my connections to anyone, my family even seeming distant. He called me back a couple of hours later and it was pleasant conversation, spirited. I asked him when I was going to see him today. He told me he didn't think he'd see me tonight because he had to get a haircut and hang out with this guy.
I knew what that meant and asked him who his date was with. Some young boy, he said, brushing it off, wanting to move forward with the conversation, past what he feared was a speedbump, what was one. I asked him why he was such a heartbreaker. He asked how my Thanksgiving was. I told him I couldn't talk to him right then and got off the phone.
I called back a minute later, frustrated that every time I try to discuss this thing, the conversation is redirected. We talked about this thing. I told him that I really liked him and that I felt really sad. It was an awkward conversation, was me being sincere about my feelings toward him, instead of the flippancy that normally marks our conversation, a mistake maybe. He had told me a while ago when we again started hanging out that he was incapable of a relationship, that he did not want one. And despite him telling me this, I had hoped that us hanging out often, having sex often, making out often meant something else, that for me there was a great deal of romantic sentiment involved, that I am absolutely crazy about this person. He referred to us as friends and again said that he wasn't available for a relationship. We talked about how to proceed so that I would not be sad. I said I would probably establish distance, should probably not be physically affectionate with him, etc. The conversation had a force of its own, taking me to these conclusions, and him as well reluctantly. Had he not already had plans tonight, I probably would have been able to hang out with him and would not have raised this subject, kicking it further on down the road for some other day.
It's really painful to admit your love to someone and to have them tell you that that's not what they are looking for. I think Wilco may have had something to do with this, but I can't blame Jeff Tweedy for the result. And I don't know. I guess it's time to move on, probably was a long time ago, but I still believe that there is something really lovely that exists between the two of us. And it's the knowledge that that thing there is there that makes me particularly crazy. I have gone on some dates in the past couple months with boys and haven't been invested in them, have had my attentions and hopes still focused on this boy, hoping that it would become something, that I would be able to admit its existence, that he would.
I haven't felt this sickness in a long time, chest suddenly feeling empty, wanting to vomit and cry. I have Wilco on again. The call was ended by him, saying that things were getting too intense, that he just got back into town, and that he would talk to me later. I feel sad, incredibly so, and thank God for this band right now. I know things though and I should acknowledge those things and feel free, feel unburdened by what I had been hoping for, know now to focus my attention elsewhere, to try for love with others. I know that, and yet, yet I still hope that he will call and tell me otherwise. Turn up that stereo and call your friends you haven't seen in a while. Get out of the house.