I went to a Buddhist silent retreat, a few years ago. You're meant to not think about anything, to empty your mind. I wasn't very good at it, and left after a couple of thoughtfilled days.
I've been aiming lower, and have been trying not to think about someone, lately. It's not really happening for me, either. I often think about what I would say, if I ran into her. But the other night I realised, 'that'll probably never happen, so don't sweat.' I'm not going out much, and last time I saw her, she crossed the road. But actually, if I'm avoiding thinking about her, it'll happen endlessly, everywhere.
I went to a shop yesterday. I bought a shirt on impulse, something I hate doing but did anyway. Impulse buying stresses me out, I don't think it's really about the money, it's about wanting wardrobe perfection, which takes time and consideration. I hardly ever wear shirts, apart from one which I wear so much it has yellow armpit stains - apparently this urea, you'll be interested to know - but keep buying them. It's like I'm trying to dress as someone else. I bought it because it reminded me of a bitching look I saw on Project Runway, a tan suit with a red suit. It was the 'design for my girlfriend' challenge, and this red/tan guy had to direct the designer to something his girlfriend would like . .
While I was waiting (what seemed a long time) for him to wrap it, I toured the shop again. Then I saw Her on the cover of a magazine. I turned it over, but she's also on the back.
While I was paying, Mat, the shop owner, started talking, at length, about how he is one of the older staff members. Most of the others are 21. I tried to say something reassuring for us, 'there's nothing like experience', well, other than the sunshine of youth. I grabbed the magazine as I left, thinking I shouldn't be scared of it, wishing I could not read it out of not needing to. I left the magazine and shirt in the car and went to the park. I was thinking here about how I don't to see her because I don't want any more material, any more memories to think about. I did some yoga, which made me feel better. Then I felt like dropping the magazine back in for another reader, and so save myself from thinking about not thinking about it. But Mat was closing up and I didn't want to chat, any more. The mag now lives in the big bag of forgetfulness, in the liquor cabinet.
When I woke up this morning, couldn't sleep 'till 3, the first thing I saw was the candy striped shirt. It is awesome, I thought of a line for it, for when I run into someone I've been wanting to run into: that I look like a giant candy cane in it, 'but then I AM like a giant candy cane.'
It reminds me of my friend, Ed's, shirt at school, if I ever want to go preppy. And I shall never have to think about what wear to a Christmas party, ever again. One less thing to think about.