self control (this is not a tribute to laura branigan).


The living is easy in Portland.

Or more accurately…finding motivation is difficult in Portland. Imagine an endless series of theme parties, extra-long happy hours, afternoons at the park, meandering bike rides, movie nights, cute boys, thrift store outings, ultra-extended inside jokes, new bars, dive bars, goth clubs (okay, there’s only one, but still), craft projects, sleepovers, friend dates, social intrigue, passive aggressive non-dating, drunk hook ups (followed by awkward-but-tasty brunches), heated classic rock discourse, and committed instagramming.  And oh yeah, conversations about things that have happened on Facebook.

And sooooooo…suddenly you find yourself (let’s just pretend that YOU are ME, Amanda McCarty/McParty) thinking, “Um yeah, so basically I haven’t written anything in two years and so yeah, I kinda have nothing to show for my life (except for some really amazing outfits). Remember when I was miserable/lonely but SO PRODUCTIVE in Philadelphia?”

I despise excuses, but I do have several.  Most involve long hours at work, chronic ennui, and struggles with self-discipline and willpower.

Two weeks ago, during yet another extra-happy hour, a friend gave me a tarot card reading.  Now before I tell you about this, I must remind you that I fancy myself an existentialist.  I don’t believe in fate.  It’s up to all of us to find our own meaning in life, and that requires stringent ownership of one’s decisions.  But then again, I do consult an astrology app (Susan Miller’s Astrology Zone, if you were wondering) every morning on the 5:21 Burnside bus.  And I have gotten into loooooong late night conversations of the “Cancers are crybabies/Leos are awesome/Aries are trouble” variety.

The first step to any tarot card reading is visualizing your question while shuffling the cards.  There were no less than ten issues that required my attention, but I couldn’t focus on them.  Instead, as soon as I closed my eyes, I was awash in the memory of drunkenly kissing a really cute boy on Belmont a few weeks ago.  I cannot emphasize enough the overall hotness of that moment. Adjectives and adverbs will not convey my true feelings.  I (cynically) credit a seven hour cocktail of whiskey, champagne, vodka, and pheromones.  Yet even now, weeks and weeks later, I’ve had to pause my typing to think about it again.  I would be lying if I said I don’t have a list of questions about that situation, but I’m fairly certain metaphysical intervention will not provide any answers.  Instead I’m just going to have to figure it out with a mixture of time and (ugh) talking.

OH YEAH TAROT: The actual reading was about my need to moderate my social life/party lifestyle, because it has been stifling my creative potential.

I’m sure there’s a way to tie that back to kissing a really handsome boy/man/dude/guy late at night on Belmont, but that’s not important.  Because really, I DO need to get it together, find some focus, muster some self-discipline, blahblahblah grown up stuff.  Also:  more kissing, but only with brilliant, hilarious individuals that love The Mighty Boosh, Fleetwood Mac, and good hip hop.

AND SO:  I’ve committed myself to writing something every day. EVERY DAY. Some of it will end up here.  If you see me monkeying around in SE Portland and I can’t tell you what I’ve written that day, get stern.  Lecture me like a dad.  DO NOT BUY ME A DRINK AND DO NOT INVITE ME TO A HOUSE PARTY (unless you can guarantee that everyone in attendance will be attractive and no one will smell like chili).

Are you ready for this?

I have so much to tell you.


One thought on “self control (this is not a tribute to laura branigan).

  1. Angie says:


    I love that you haven’t totally abandoned this blog. You’re a talented and intelligent writer. Unless you’re housing your work in a vault bc you have a big publishing deal or expect to get one soon, write more!

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