Tuesday, February 10, 2004

Don't Mean A Thing...

...if you ain't got that swing, do-wa-do-wa-do-wa-do-wa!

I'm feeling particularly un-swingy today. I wonder if this is what being old feels like. I went to bed at eight o'clock last night. I'm reading The DaVinci Code because everyone else is reading it. I'm thinking about shaving my head so I don't have to style my hair anymore... and if I weren't a drag queen, I might just go ahead and grow a beard.

Perhaps I am overreacting. I mean, I went to bed at eight last night because I stayed up until four a.m. Saturday night (or Sunday morning, whichever way you look at it): I was performing in a show at Marlena's that didn't end until almost 1, and then took Angelique home and then went back to my office to change out of drag and then got home and realized I hadn't eaten anything in nine hours so I made myself a sandwich before finally getting into bed, but was so keyed up and sore that I couldn't get to sleep... and then had to get up again at eight a.m. to take the Grandmother to church, but couldn't take a nap because I was having an early dinner with Kevin and Mary Jane and then I didn't get back to bed until almost midnight Sunday, and then had to get up at eight again to go to work... which leaves four hours of unslept sleep that had to be taken care of. Gone are the days when I can lose sleep and then just forget about it; those missing four hours would have haunted me all week until I made them up. So I went to bed four hours early last night.

And I'm not reading The DaVinci Code MERELY because everyone else is reading it, but because everyone who's read it tells me it's fabulous; of course, they said the same thing about The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay, for which I didn't really care that much... masterfully written but essentially grim. But since it was in following the crowd that I discovered the Harry Potter books, which I loved dearly, when Everyone reads something I figure I might as well give it a shot.

Besides, I was mourning aloud the other day that nobody ever reads the books I read, and I never seem to read the books that other people read, so I never get to discuss literature in any way with anybody... leading me to fill up time talking about pop culture topics like Miss Jackson's Tit or telling humorized stories about the stupid things that happen in my life. My coworker JB is reading The DaVinci Code for her book club, so I figured if I read it also, she and I could discuss it at length, the way we discuss movies we've both seen. Maybe I should join a book club, too. I am a writer, after all: perhaps it would help my craft to discuss the written word instead of just consuming it.

But the head-shaving thing, that is age talking. I'm simply tired of hair. My hair has always been a time-consuming project; even after I've given up on coloring it (it simply won't hold color anymore) and hunting down the perfect haircut (whenever I do find someone who cuts my hair just right, s/he moves to another state), it still has to be conditioned and blow-dried and styled in order to look like anything other than a bird's nest. But I have this terrible fear that if I cut my hair really really short, I will look utterly ridiculous and will have to remain ridiculous-looking for months and months because my hair grows so slowly (I usually only get it cut two or three times a year). I have a big square face that needs softening around the edges, and I have a bony ridge running down the center of my scalp, like a Klingon from Star Trek or the Sleestack in Land of the Lost; these things are not conducive to baldness.

Or maybe all of the above is just the Depression talking. I'm simply tired of it all. But most importantly, I'm tired of being tired of it all. Shiloh has referred me to his herbalist in Chinatown, I'm going to go give that a try and see if it helps. Psychotherapy is on my short list, too, I'm waiting only for some health benefits to kick in before I commit to it. Whatever I do, I have to do something, this can't continue to spiral downward as it has been doing.

A friend recently told me that his shrink considers any thoughts of suicide, however fleeting they may be or however quickly you talk yourself out of them, to be indicative of a Suicidal Mood; and I don't know how many times I've been driving along a difficult bit of freeway, speeding just a trifle with the cruise-control on while going around a sturdily-walled inside curve or a flimsily-railed canyon corner, and thought "I could just let go of the wheel." It is possible that I'm mildly suicidal and didn't even know it.

There are also my difficulties with getting started on cleaning my room and my resistance to grooming (not only do I tire of my hair and hate shaving, I am starting to dislike showering as well) to consider: disinterest in personal cleanliness can be a signal of dangerous levels of depression. Though I don't think these mean anything yet, it nevertheless seems best to nip them in the bud. So we start looking for solutions to the problem; or barring solutions, we seek coping mechanisms. Chinese herbs or pharmaceutical antidepressants are tools to cope with physical difficulties, and so long as one doesn't view them as a cure, keeps one's expectations in check, they can be very useful.

So that's me today. I have to go to work and start two hateful projects (newsletter printing and envelope labeling) and work on two other hateful project I've already started (minute-writing and database-reconciling), and then there's the rest of the week to get through (though it will be blessedly short... we have a four-day weekend coming up). So I guess I'd better get started.

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