July 25, 2015


first photo shot on my new iPhone 6, as i regret that i sold my big camera on eBay...

What if we run out of stories to tell? What if sitting face to face with someone loses all meaning and there are no more expressions of self to share? Is story-telling really all that we explicitly are? I'm driving myself insane with these notions, as I sit here on an idle Saturday morning, mourning the fact that I am so old that accompanying my dear friend Lindsay (aka "bee") (I am, to her, "bear") to a giant beer garden in Astoria, Queens last night was not an activity I could muster on a Friday which found our Senior PM releasing us at 3:30 (normal Friday hour release is 4PM...have I mentioned how much I love Shawmut??) and ultimately landed me asleep way earlier than normal on any given Friday. I texted her that I wasn't going to make it; she was fully understanding of the fact and today she is headed to the Jersey Shore to spend the remainder of the weekend with her parents (who are amazing) and she invited me, even offered to pick me up, and at 7:58AM I'm feeling less than enthusiastic about the adventure, despite that I've been there once with my friend Maria and it was an incredible time with tons of food, wine and a dip of my toe into the ocean. I can cancel on bee at any given second and she offers whole and sound and genuine understanding but why would I cancel...? I have nothing else on the books. Jon is heading to "France" (Cutchogue, way out on Long Island) with his son to visit family, and meanwhile, Greg is in California working from the Mountainview Campus and to see a Phish show. And my most recent communication with Greg, anyway, was a cancelation on this past week's Denise session because of a hold up on my end in Midtown, his text response being, "Come by as long as you can get there before 6:59PM." Greg is insanely clever and I repeatedly question my unreasonable inability to solidify stability with him. 

I don't understand why I've become so hollow inside. Let me retract that statement immediately and then reinstate it. I suppose my definition of that can be that more often than not, I can be found standing on an intersection of Midtown Manhattan waiting for the light to change and thinking, what is this all? People bustling by with agendas, or do they really have them? And if they do, why do I not? Or do I? And I'm just not acknowledging it? Are their agendas of significance? Or is one tourist planning on seeing the Empire State Building and that will fulfill a lifelong dream and then once that's done, what next?

I suppose in some ways I feel as though I've managed to fill a gaping number of voids in my life already, so, what next? I hear my colleagues discuss their global trips: Morocco, Greece, Turkey, Italy...and I think, lamely, dully, I've done the world traveling thing already. I hear about engagements, weddings...and think, I was in a really long relationship once, it failed, I've been there. Why revisit that life event? People having babies? Great, and all (I really love children and am good with them) but I barely know the rules of taking care of myself, much less of fragile smaller humans.

I don't suppose I can say I'm running out of stories. I think what I can say is that I'm dodging building new ones. I'm not sure why.

Greg and I did embark on the Sensory Deprivation Tank experience together, early in July. It was a "float date," the same Friday I would board a plane to Detroit to drive with my Dad and his girlfriend to Chicago for a family reunion of sorts, birthday parties, and so forth. I took that Friday off, and under gentle guidance, did not eat that morning or drink caffeine. I grabbed the G train to Carroll Street, our "appointments" were scheduled for 9:30 and we were advised to arrive, as first time floaters, 15 minutes early, and I navigated my way from the subway station to the spa. 

I call it a "spa." I've read it called that in several articles, and I suppose, in essence, that is a sufficient word for it. Greg was running an eensy bit late, by 5 minutes or so, and when I saw him crossing the intersection in Brooklyn to join me on the street there in front of Lift / Next Level Floats, my heart unleashed all of its rainbows and unicorns that reside and await the next opportunity we have together: me, Greg, the rainbows and unicorns. One big happy dysfunctional universe. He stepped into my immediate presence and handed me a note.

"July 10, 2015. First Greg thought of the day."

First fold of the note.

Second fold:

"I wonder if / when white lies are okay."

Third and final fold:

"I told Emma and Minnow the reason I'm vegetarian is so they can have all the chicken."

He taps immediately into my mind's threshold. Always.

We climbed the stairs to the second floor of a Brooklyn building and entered through a door into what instantly felt like a warm happy chamber: clean, fresh air, two smiling people, David and Gina, welcoming us in for our first floating experiences. The finishes of the space are minimalistic, inviting, soothing, really. And we were thus calmly introduced to what was to be expected during our first float.

Greg had chosen a "room," which I was shown before seeing my chosen "float vessel" (a clam shell shaped pod) - his room was an enclosed ceiling height room within a room containing a shower and space for personal belongings. In Greg's selected float space, overhead the ceiling was punctured with dozens of holes revealing LED lights to resemble an early night sky filled with stars. The space glowed blue and glittered with the colored "stars," and seemed altogether comfortable.

Then David walked me to my space, a room containing a pod shaped entity (and complete with a shower and personal belonging shelving space.) The pod lid was open, revealing about a foot of water in a subtle pink glow, and David explained a few more things to me:

Ear plugs are available for you in order to prevent the salt water from entering your ears.

Shower before entering the float chamber.

There is a neck pillow available however it is not necessary to keep your head afloat: the Epsom salt will take care of that for you.

The two buttons on the side of the chamber regulate music (if you choose) and the light within the chamber.

Relax, and remember that your first float may be experimental and may determine how your experience ensues. 

I'm paraphrasing all of this, of course, but it was good information that David gave. He bid me farewell, and I locked the door and turned to face some inner fears.

I say "face inner fears" because a great deal of the concept of this hour alone gravitationally unchallenged on a bed of body temperature water is that you are, in all serious essence, completely alone. You aren't distracted by the opportunity to snatch your phone and do a random Google search for whatever, or to text someone, or even just see if anyone is out there. You're enclosed, encompassed by this sensory depravation experience, numbing absolutely everything but the thought process. 

And in sincere honesty, the first 45 minutes were confusing, to me. Right away I adapted to the idea that I was buoyant. I had no fear of sinking / drowning, nor really claustrophobia (that is one phobia I managed to somehow escape, thankfully, in my years of life.) It was more or less the sheer concept of it all (regardless of all I had read going into it.) When I closed the lid of the shell, and punched the button to turn off the light, there was exterior light leakage through the chamber lid from the exterior of it. I didn't know what was happening so I fought to pull the lid tighter but that wasn't the issue: the lights suddenly dimmed to an absolute blackness as promised (the lights are on a timer evidently to give you some time to configure yourself.) That element was not explained to me so at first, I worried that I was experiencing a Fisher Price version of floating. Although then when the light depletion was resolved, I was using the neck pillow to keep my ears out of water and had forgotten to use the ear plugs provided. My neck was palpably distressed and not only that, but without the ear plugs, I could hear the voices of David and Gina from the lobby: all very distracting for my first float. As I struggled to lay in peace, my fingertips would grace the solidity of the shell itself (as I was restless and moving) which also distracted my experience.

And my music didn't work (which I learned later was a "my bad" on David's part but which I totally didn't mind.)

At some point around the first half hour, I scrambled (in my blatant nudity, as that is how they recommend to float) to open the clam shell lid, grab the ear plugs, shove them into my ear cavities and lose the neck pillow. Once this physical transaction took place, I lay on this bed of Epsom salt-laden water, ears submerged but protected by plugs, no sound, no light emission, little to no sensation of my skin versus the surface on which I lay. I began to not be able to actualize if my eyes were open or closed. No reverberations took place: I had relaxed my core so that my legs lay still, my spine loose but resolved, and my arms lay like loose spaghetti floating.

It was perhaps the most amazing 20 minutes of my life.

I didn't want it to end however I did realize it took me the first 3/4 of the way into it to really understand how to do it.

And people who do this regularly, and offer it as a service, supplement to the experience that it may take more than 2-3 floats to find your own satisfactory experience.

I won't give up on it. The bliss I felt when I left, the physical relaxed state, the salt and its comfort to my skin and muscles, was unreal. 


So, I suppose I am continuing to accrue stories. I don't know: sometimes I feel like I'm a total boring human. Other times I feel so complex that I'm not sure I want to burden any other humans with the complexity of it all.

Many times, I just want to take a long nap. Wake up having had no weird dreams (sadly, that never happens.) Regularly, I just numb my wounds as I see fit.

July 03, 2015


...see what Google did there? Go Pride...I'm very proud.

Tonight was a pivotal, if not an absolutely impacting and square on intersection with / me and G.

I had invited myself to meet him at his offices (if that would be feasible for him) and he amicably agreed, and so I left my office early today (go 4th of July Holiday hours!) and subwayed myself to his location in Chelsea.

I felt so tired, and so beat down from the week. And I knew we were meeting to go further meet with Denise and to possibly hang out a bit afterward.

Not one moment of my night could have gone any better than it did.

I made my way to Google, which always provides me with internal smiles because G just barely seems like a Google guy yet he so does (it's a duality of his personality that I admire) and he met me in the lobby at 9th and 15th, and I had to do the obligatory ID hand off followed by the secure sign-in that would extra-verify that I was an approved Google Office Visitor. We got up to his floor, where his work space is, and he basically quietly dropped me off at a seating space in order that he could go back to work. Fine by me - I explored Google's newly designed digs (new floor) like a quiet banshee...I found the "nap loft," laid in it, looked around at ceiling details (construction weirdo) and raided the lounge nearby for Aloe Vera water and cheese sticks. I drooped around quietly like a non-Google entity inspired by the greatness surrounding me.

Then he came and found me, at some point, and we took a cab to see Denise.

*Our sessions with Denise do not qualify to be written here. Too confidential.*

Afterward, as we entered into one of the many odd hallways to get us out of the building, he touched my arm.

His eyes, and his touch, send electricity through me, like probing pinpoints of surge, like lightning bolts. I assert that that may never change.

We sat together on a chair, his legs close to kissing mine, and mused quietly over what we had just discussed. A few people came and went in and out of the elevator bay, and we silenced ourselves when strangers were in our presence, but it never went underestimated by my legs that his were fastened closely to them.

We talked. We headed down the elevator shaft to the lobby. We stood outside and discussed an extension of what we had discussed upstairs with Denise. He tossed me those eyes that make me want to shiver and curl up in a warm blanket. The copper ones of which I always speak.

And then, it was decided, he requested, that I have dinner with him.

It's very difficult for me to go on from here.

I can say we did hold hands, at several points. I re-fell in love with him, not as though I ever fell "out," but his eyes, mind, brain, lips, words: G, you.

Out of nowhere when we were talking, he mentioned this thing called a Sensory Deprivation Tank. He wants me to do it with him. It involves floating naked and solo in a tank filled with body temperature water and so much salt that you just float...and it desensitizes all of your...senses.

So we texted later on, after we parted ways in Union Square (again, grabbing hands and holding for a while...these are milestones) and it sounds as though we may be doing this next Friday.


I can only say.

Sitting across from him.

Whether it's in therapy with Denise, or just us over veggie burgers and cheese fries and so many dipping sauces that he delivered to our little table, or sharing milkshakes (I love how I can hold mine to his lips and he partakes)...this is me, madly in love. I can't believe how much hard work it takes to let this love free-flow into the world.