Archive for October, 2012

8:14 (78)

Posted in eight fourteen with tags on October 31, 2012 by darryl zero

I spotted her, as I usually do, by accident, focused more on the sushi than anything else in the store–it’s easy protein, even if it’s overpriced, I thought to myself–when, may the feminists of the world forgive me, I spotted her butt.  Hard though it may be to believe, from the angle at which I was standing, to see her butt next to where I was looking meant I was dealing with an unusually tall person for a woman–abnormally so–and, despite myself, I admired her backside for a moment, curved in that way women’s butts do when they’ve got just enough substance to them without being what some (not I, but some) would call “too big.”  She was wearing some kind of dark coat that fell over her waist, covering the tops of her hips, so I could only tell that she had them in the first place, but it didn’t take long during my gaze’s trip up the back side of her body to notice the red hair spilling down to her shoulders.

Kryptonite, I said to myself, and shook my head.

She was walking toward the back of the store, near the confectionery, and I was headed back there too to pick up a rice krispie treat, as is my custom (all nutrition and no flavor makes Zero crave junk food at all times, something I circumvent by refusing to deny myself anything that I truly want); so it wasn’t so much that I was following her so much as I was inevitably going to get to where she was after her.  Not that I minded.

Her back was still to me when I got there, making a beeline straight for the rice krispie treats.  I deliberately focused on the pastry chef–a cute blond with glasses–and used my spatial sense to take in the presence of the redhead.  She seemed taller than I am but, knowing my penchant for thinking myself shorter than I really am, she could have been anywhere between six-one and six four.  And skinny, but the coat added the illusion of some girth–she may not have been an athlete, but she seemed substantial enough to seem womanly and not like a 14-year-old girl grown startlingly tall in a brief amount of time.  No, she moved like a woman–or, at least, one close enough to womanhood that it would justify her being in a grocery store on her own in an early evening.

[time’s up, but I’m going to continue–]

I couldn’t get a good look at her face.  I grabbed a free sample of banana bread and smiled at the pastry chef before angling behind the redhead to look at the tea (almost out of Lapsang Souchong, I justified myself by imagining I was planning on what I was going to purchase tomorrow when I got paid).

She stepped out from behind an endcap and I caught her face–big, blue eyes, the color of the ocean at Nanakuli Beach on Oahu that sunny day when I was twelve and my mom lost her glasses in the surf, and a neutral grin below a large-ish nose. Lips, red in that funny way pale girls’ lips can look even without makeup, her whole face unadorned, small chin.  She could have been anywhere between 19 and 28–I’m horrible at placing ages, so I blocked that out of my mind, instead focusing on the hair, held back by a headband, that perfect red.


I got most of the way up to the front of the store before I got the crazy idea in my head to go say hello.  It was alien at first, the idea, the notion that I’d walk up to her, a total stranger, and I was reminded of all the times I’d do things like that, just saunter up to girls (and, as I got older, women) and just introduce myself, a guy quick with a friendly smile and a compliment or some other acknowledgment of some awesome detail about themselves that could not go unnoticed or unacknowledged, and then I immediately thought about every single weird, sideways, condescending, uncomfortable, or just plain disinterested expression I’d ever gotten in reply, and, realizing that I’d just be that dude stepping to some girl for no real reason when all she wanted to do was shop, I decided she probably was married, or gay, or fifteen, or something else that basically meant I should just mind my own business and finish going about my day.

I walked past her, straight to the cooler with coconut milk, knowing I wasn’t going to buy anything and feeling like a fucking moron.  I caught a glimpse of her face as I walked past, smooth, oddly freckle-less, and didn’t even think to steal a glance at her left hand to see if she was wearing a ring.  I excused myself politely as I stepped past, carrying my groceries and the weight of decades of failures and months of loneliness and regrets, and tried as hard as I could to commit her beautiful face to memory.


things I have done this year for the first time:

Posted in Uncategorized on October 24, 2012 by darryl zero

visited another country

purchased my own plane ticket

been to both sides of North America

acquired a vehicle with less than 80,000 miles on it

met Lisa-Marie Ferla

performed songs onstage with three different musical acts

cooked satay

held a baby

purchased a car from a car dealer


met the woman whose love letters to my father I found when I was 12, thus beginning the decline of my relationship to him

crashed at my Uncle Barry’s apartment

baked a whoopie pie

demanded nude pictures from people for my birthday

received nude pictures from people for my birthday


worn gloves while lifting weights

played Magic: The Gathering while watching UFC

purchased a teakettle

your face is momentary.

Posted in Uncategorized with tags on October 23, 2012 by darryl zero

kiss me with the kisses of your mouth.

fun fact:

Posted in Uncategorized on October 20, 2012 by darryl zero

I feel like a loser and feel completely useless and want to die, and then I talk to my Anjali or Arthur or any one of my kids and I go into “strong, problem-solving Darryl” mode and all I want to do is see them become everything they are capable of being.

It makes me wonder if I really should wait on this whole “parenthood” thing.  Funny, how being a protector and a nurturer pulls me together.

phone jot.

Posted in Uncategorized on October 9, 2012 by darryl zero

I don’t really like riding the bus around Des Moines; like Portland, it seems to sprawl endlessly, neighborhood rolling into neighborhood like a dream sequence in the worst John Carpenter nightmare movie, but lacking the population (or popular enthusiasm) to justify a more consistent mass transit service, going anywhere without a car is basically an odyssey. Natural hazards of living somewhere so spread out , I suppose, but it doesn’t make it any less unpleasant, especially when you live in the suburbs.

Sleep doesn’t seem to be helping me anymore. Whether I get five or fifteen hours, the time I spend not awake feels more like punctuative afterthought than actual rest, and it recharges me just enough to get to my next emotionally exhaustive humiliation. Or, at least , it would be humiliating if I had the emotions to care. But I don’t, at least not in any lasting sense. As usual, I break the day down into tasks: get out in time to get to gym, get out in time to get to work, get out in time to catch a ride home, get in bed in time to fall asleep before the clock reads 0300 (because it will sneak up on me if I’m not paying attention), repeat until the weekend. The weekends are, at least, free of any lasting obligations (single life’s secondary advantage after being a lot cheaper), but the loneliness looms large over everything in the worst way, whispering the same thing chirped by the failing springs of the bed on which I sleep, barked by the voices to whom I spend my days talking, implied by the pictures of happy babies and happier parents on my Facebook feed and screamed outright by my muscles with every rep of every weight I lift: YOU ARE WASTING YOUR FUCKING TIME

show and prove.

Posted in Uncategorized on October 5, 2012 by darryl zero

I have to say this: I don’t believe in Hell in the monotheistic religious sense. I don’t think there’s a place somewhere in which we dwell outside of the sight of the divine; if anything, that place is here, in which we are bound by our silly, petty perceptions and stupid, ignorant judgments.  I think that, if damnation exists, we live in it.  Babies die, good people suffer, and people who embody everything most religious dogma actively forbids effectively run everything there is.  That’s part of why I don’t believe in an interventionist god; if it allows all the bullshit that goes on every day to happen, it’s not a god that deserves to be worshipped.

I do, however, believe in heaven, and I hope to fuck that Jam Master Jay is DJing a set with MCA and Guru leading a massive freestyle session with every rapper that ever died spitting verses until the end of time.