Originally uploaded by yaznotjaz
“Everyone’s a critic, yaar,” said my friend over IM. “Let’s just call ’em all biatches.”
I started laughing, which was a good thing, because I had just spent most of the morning cursing a stranger I knew nothing about. This was two Fridays ago. It started with an email: GMail automatically refreshed my open window, I clicked over and saw a subject line I found vaguely but not unduly interesting, and clicked further to read the email. Two lines in, I sucked in a shocked breath…and expelled some expletives while making the rest of my way through the succinct, two-paragraph note. What the F*CK is THIS drama?
The irony, of course, is that I am famous amongst friends for constantly gloating about the fact that “my life is gorgeously drama-free.” And it is, dammit. I still stand by my smug assertion. Just a few minutes earlier that morning, I had been reminding my friend about the very same fact, until I checked my emails and then interrupted my cursing long enough to IM him with, “I gotta reply to an email some stupid biatch just sent me. Freakin’ drama, yaar.”
It is a testament to my friend-choosing skills that his first reaction was, “HAHAHA YOU SAID BIATCH!” Reaction number two, when I shared the contents of the hateful little email: “HOLY SHIT.”
Thus followed a mainly-one-sided discussion about the best way in which to respond. I was still on a roll with the profanity, but my friend presented thoughtful justifications for why someone would be driven to compose a note like that. “Be nice when you respond,” he suggested. “Kill her with kindness, you have the word skills.”
“BASTID!” I fumed. I stared at my computer screen, seething. “What the f*ck is this woman ON?”
I was feeling rattled and caught off-guard and seriously just plain pissed off. But I couldn’t dismiss the friend’s approach of looking at this situation from a different angle; it made too much sense. So I sighed and buckled up and wrote a sweet, rambling yet pointed response that covered all the key details in question. I used big, important words like ANATHEMA, and sent a draft of my response to the friend, to look it over.
“Anathema!” he cheered. “Ten point word. New record! Crowd goes wild!“
“I am so essmahrt, yaar,” I acknowledged, adding with malicious satisfaction, “Maybe she’ll have to look it up in the dictionary. Oh, and is it wrong to call her ‘stupid biatch’ still?”
I sent off my reply, then straightaway began to feel both relieved and amused: “I’ve never had so much drama! This is kinda exciting. No wonder people feed off this sort of stuff.”
I thanked my friend for his amusement and advice (but mainly the amusement), then left for Friday congregational prayers – in Berkeley that week – to repent for my blasphemous profanity (except I wasn’t really feeling remorseful about it, not one damn bit. But I’m sure God understood. He and I understand each other quite well). At the YWCA on Bancroft, where the UC Berkeley MSA holds Friday prayers, I listened intently to a sermon on setting long-term goals but using the short-term to accomplish them. It was just the sort of motivation I’d been needing for months. Afterward, while meeting and greeting all the people I knew, the lovely H touched me with her comment, “I like your blog and your writing style,” and then made me laugh when she admitted that she had been reading the weblog instead of her physiology textbook. Don’t I know that feeling very well myself.
I declined the traditional lunch at Julie’s for reasons I can’t recall at the moment, and mentioned I’d just stop by Cafe Milano for a frozen drink. “Try the chocolate chip cookies from Milano,” suggested my sister. “They’re even better than the ones from Julie’s.”
“Yeah?” I said interestedly. You know our family well enough by now – we’re constantly on a chocolate chip cookie quest. So I stopped by Milano and bought a cookie as advised, as well as a blended frozen mocha – the only kind of coffee I can handle, except this one wasn’t a smart choice either, since I took two sips while walking down Telegraph to my car and immediately felt the sick, anxious feeling I get from caffeinated beverages (like all those endless energy drinks I downed in college).
I drove from Berkeley back to my hometown and still felt sick, so I continued straight on Ygnacio Valley Road with the sunroof wide open, blasting music. There’s not much that an extra-loud mixture of Niyaz, Outlandish, and DEBU can’t fix on an icky day. [I love DEBU’s song Lautan Hatiku/The Sea of my Heart, by the way. Watch the video/listen to it here.] I drove twenty miles out of my way, hoping the drive would clear my head, and it did a well enough job of it.
I got home and immediately made a beeline for my computer, only to be disappointed that there was no reply from “the stupid biatch.” (There still has not been, even two weeks later. Somayya remarked yesterday, “I think she probably read your email and just felt really, really stupid.”)
While I was busy making faces at the lack of an acknowledgment/reply, my lovely partner-in-crime, Somayya, called to share exciting news: “Yazzo! Just wanted to let you know the 7-Eleven in San Mateo has blue slurpees! Come visit!”
The local Target carries blue icees, too, I realized just a few days ago. I knew I loved that place for a reason, and not just for the fact that I spend too much money every time I’m there. And, seriously, who gives a freakin’ damn about stupid biatches when my year-long quest for blue raspberry-flavored slurpees is over?