Tell Me More, Continued

23 April 2002

Another morning with no connectivity. I don't particularly like this trend, but it let up early yesterday, and I'm hoping for the same today. Otherwise, butt will be kicked. We still have phone service. This should not be hard.

So yesterday I got the house more or less together. Looks like C.J.'s flight arrives around 9:00 tonight. Since he did this so quickly, I can't really obsess about making everything perfect. I'll just have to live with making it be good enough.

Show of hands: who believes a word of that? No? Sigh.

But really, mostly I'll be focusing on getting a bunch of writing done today. If I'm going to do the Lunar Epoxy story, it probably needs to be at least half finished by the time I leave for the airport tonight. We shall see. If it's not, it's not. I will deal either way.

I've been reading James Blaylock's The Last Coin (like Homunculus, a library book), and I'm once again unimpressed. He got me with All the Bells On Earth. I liked that one. It's been my favorite of his books so far, and it gave me hope that I would enjoy others, too. And perhaps I will. Perhaps these are just the wrong others. I have to say, though, I'm well into this book and don't really care about any of the characters, which has been a common problem for Blaylock books for me. Maybe I'll read Kara Dalkey instead. My library books are due on the day Ceej leaves, and somehow I don't think I'm going to have a lot of reading time in the next week or so.

Not that I'm complaining, mind you.

That Darn Karina. Before I read her stuff last year about the Eco-Challenge, I had no idea what it was, and then when I heard what it was, I had no interest in watching any of the coverage of it. It looked, as Mark has said more than once, like people doing their best to mess up their feet. But the interesting thing with the Eco-Challenge for me is the group dynamics. Watching to see how people handle it when their teammates need help, or when they themselves need help...watching them figure out who's in charge at any given moment, regardless of whether it's the official captain of the team...and all that. It's all very cool. I can see the appeal now. And I go back to my book when they start in with the foot stuff again.

So...right. Yesterday I was about to go on a tangent about the chick code. As far as I can tell, the chick code means that you can tell other women pretty much anything about your body, especially if it's not immediate. If other people's bodies get involved, they might not want to hear it, and if it's about the momentary state of your digestive tract, they also may not care. But women can talk to other women about "female issues," which covers a multitude of things, and by the time you can talk about some of that, anything else bodily seems to be fair game. And even expected. If you have some kind of surgery or problem, it's almost an obligation to let other women know what it was like. Whereas men...on the middle of his three cancer surgeries, my grandpa looked at my friends and said, "Boys, don't do this." And that was it. There was no explanation of how it felt or what the signals had been or anything concrete like that. It was not fun, they should not do it, the end. And it extends to trivial stuff, too, bra sizes and dress shopping and all of those shared horrors.

(Which reminds me...our culture is supposedly obsessed with skinny women with big boobs, right? Well, I'm not freakishly either, but I'm thin enough that some brands of "Ladies'" clothing don't run small enough for me, and I'm busty enough that I can't buy bras at most department stores because the numbers and letters are not so well matched in their opinion. And if our culture is so supposedly obsessed with slender girls with breasts, where are the clothes for me? That's what I want to know. Ahem. Anyway.)

So. That's part of the chick code, and that's a level of openness you have automatically if you're female and make a new female friend and deal with her in female-only company...nope, it's gone now. No idea where this was going in relation to yesterday's topic. Sorry.

But. Anyway. I'm used to new friends and near-strangers being surprised at what I'm not telling them. It's something I've seen before, and it's something I expect. But from people I consider close friends -- well. It's something of a surprise. And then again, perhaps it shouldn't be. In some ways, I think building a friendship involves figuring out what you can talk about with someone. Which partly involves figuring out what you can't talk about with them, for whatever reasons. Sometimes because they react poorly. Sometimes because they're not interested. Sometimes because you and they have little enough in common in your views of a particular topic that you can't even find the common ground to argue about it on more than a "Nuh-uh!" "Yuh-uh!" level. Probably there are more reasons. I think that it's perfectly permissible to use past data to determine what you talk to people about.

I also think it's permissible for those people to say that they've changed their minds and are more interested/tolerant or have changed their minds enough that there's common ground for you to discuss. And I guess that's what I'm getting from those two close friends in the last year. I try to let people change, but sometimes if there are topics you avoid, you also avoid finding out how people have changed in regard to them. And maybe that's bad, maybe I should poke at my friends every once in awhile to see: still feel this way? Yeah? Okay, that's all I wanted to know.

I can't find my notes on the Lunar Epoxy story in my paper journal. Drat. I guess I have my task cut out for me. Find Lunar Epoxy notes. Write story. Kick butt of DSL people. Fold socks, read Bijapur and make dinner; fetch Ceej. Sounds like a plan for a day. Doesn't it? Oh, sure it does.

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