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Tuesday, July 16, 2013

52

A Guide to Eating Very Particular Feelings, Part II

FEELING: The one where you're sitting alone in a dark bar with a bitter drink on a rainy day and you suddenly realize that this is your life, the final verdict on who you are at the age you've gotten to, and in a pulse beat you're crowded by the phantoms of everyone you didn't grow up to be, every delayed breakup and untaken trip and turned-down job now hoisting glasses on the stools around you, pressed knee-to-knee with the children you failed to bear or raise, and you feel that all your breath has gone into them, that somewhere only a shimmering membrane away from reality these others are breathing for you.

HOW TO EAT IT: What kind of snacks do they have at this bar? Goldfish crackers? Perfect. Whole handfuls of goldfish crackers. Tip the extras into your purse.

•••

FEELING: The pinch in your chest and gut the day after a disappointment you'd convinced yourself you didn't care about; the feeling that something has slit you bloodlessly like a scalpel and you are now clamped open, peeled and pithed as a frog, all your sensitive organs fully on display.

HOW TO EAT IT: Jello shots.

•••

FEELING: The one where you've met a new friend or you're getting to know an old one better and the current running between you is so powerful that talking seems painfully inefficient, you're always heading to the subway having turned over only a few paltry pebbles from the mountain of conversations you want to have, and you're trying to stay cool and remember that you have years to chip through that cliff but only if you don't scare them off right now by being too intense but you feel like running a USB cable from your head into theirs or better yet just clawing your skull open and holding out your brain like a ripe fruit: "Here, take this, know me."

HOW TO EAT IT: Brie, crackers, tiny pickles, cocktail weenies, party shrimp.

•••

FEELING: The one where you're downtown on one of the first warm and long days of spring, and the sun is setting at an hour when your winter-atrophied brain thinks it ought to be dark, and great swaths of lavish light are lying across the trees and benches and buildings like brocade, and all of the girls are just so startlingly pretty, and you feel that your chest is a silver bowl that's been struck and is ringing, high and bright and painful because what right do you have to live among so much beauty?

HOW TO EAT IT: The most ornate thing you can buy from an ice cream truck.

•••

FEELING: The one where someone finally breaks the news you've been refusing to admit you already knew, and the bones in your arms turn to aspic and your ribcage is aspic juddering around your heart.

HOW TO EAT IT: At first, it will be too big to eat. When you can eat, seek cake.

 

 

Previously: Part I

Photo via joshnas/flickr.

Jess Zimmerman actually deals with most feelings using cocktails She tweets a lot about feminism and dogs and stuff at @j_zimms



52 Comments / Post A Comment

Gulfie

Ahhhh these make me feel so wonderfully tragically human

Scandyhoovian

My job hunt is just me trying to convince myself, over and over, that I won't feel the need for jello shots if I don't hear back.

So many jello shots.

That one just really hit home, I guess.

tessamae

@Scandyhoovian I am hunting the jobs, too. My hunt also includes a lot of me trying to blame my skill set as being too specific for most opportunities. Which is just about as successful as trying to use the I'm-too-good-for-him pep talk after a breakup.

So pass them shots.

causedbycomma

@Scandyhoovian Ugh, so sorry. I am dealing with chronic job dissappointment and bitterness because I am not a brown-nosing kind of person, and so I constantly get from my less successful friends "hey when are you going to make partner?" and I have to explain to them that I'm not.

Um, how do you eat that feeling? Where people make you feel like crap and you want to say "but I am satisfied with my job, or at least I would be if people didn't have all these unrealistic expectations!!!"

SmartCookie

@causedbycomma I'd like to eat this feeling, too.

Olympic Hopeful

@causedbycomma This sounds like it would pair well with a pita. Stuff it with cucumbers and feta and tzatziki and other savories that will mask the exasperation you also need to stuff inside.

backstagebethy

These make me wanna cry, in maybe a good way but maybe a bad way too.

Lily Rowan

@backstagebethy Yuuuup.

empathicalist

@backstagebethy - Good to know it wasn't just me.

iceberg

Oof that last one.

HereKitty

@iceberg All perfect but especially that one.

RNL
RNL

'...or better yet just clawing your skull open and holding out your brain like a ripe fruit: "Here, take this, know me."'

Here, take this, know me.

Alli525

@RNL I had The Second-to-Last Feeling upon reading the Third-to-Last Feeling (is there a food pairing for this?). I <3 u Pinnie!

Scary Wollstonecraft

"The most ornate thing you can buy from an ice cream truck."
Oh, beautiful truth! The best truth.

Big Rig and Jesse

I didn't even get past the first one. That is basically the only feeling I ever feel, these days, and it's a really hard one to explain when bosses or bartenders or hairstylists want to know why you're crying.

JessicaLovejoy

@Big Rig and Jesse Luckily for me, my mattress and pillow know not to question.

causedbycomma

@Big Rig and Jesse What we need to do is just keep copies of this page and hand them out to inquiring strangers.

Big Rig and Jesse

@causedbycomma "I'm sorry...I'm just having a lot of complex emotions right now...do you read the Hairpin?...I have a printout!" Love it, because even if it's peppered with sniffs and sobs, getting that sentence out is basically guaranteed to make you stop feeling like you were. Mostly because then you'd be embarrassed/elated. No room for both.

PomoFrannyGlass

@Big Rig and Jesse Right there with ya, friend.

Last Friday I decided to eat these feelings at the fancy, Bey+Jay-Z-approved restaurant on my block, which on a Friday evening is filled with beautiful families eating organic chicken OR beautiful couples drinking organic wine, depending on how early/late it is. I plunked myself down at the bar with The Heart is a Lonely Hunter and had a martini and french fries with garlic mayonnaise for dinner. And I felt a tiny bit self-conscious that the emptiness of my life was on display in this manner until a waitress walked past and looked at my book and my glass and my plate and said, enviously, "That looks amazing."

theotherginger

@PomoFrannyGlass amazing lady. Do good things for yourself.

needsmoresalt

I really love your writing style. So...keep it up, I guess.

teaandcakeordeath

HOW CAN THESE BE SO PERFECT?!
(Clarification: I am shouting with happiness)

Heat Signature

Ugh, the second to last is me, right now, and I just want to spend all of my time with him and when I can't I get pissy.

Also, I feel like "Seek cake" can also apply to any feelings you wish to eat.

Erin Sturm@twitter

I completely love this.

Jinxie

"The one where someone finally breaks the news you've been refusing to admit you already knew, and the bones in your arms turn to aspic and your ribcage is aspic juddering around your heart."
This made my breath catch in my throat. So good, so right.

br1gid

Nothing like the last one followed by the one just before it in the same day.

RachelTheC

But what do I eat when all I can think of is the worst ways to die, and even though you know nobody deserves to be slowly set on fire, you know somehow you deserve it, because of all the awful things you did as a child, and the good you haven't done as an adult?

Big Rig and Jesse

@RachelTheC Hot and sour soup, followed by a creamy, strong cocktail and an antacid, then sleeping somewhere where it's cool and bright until you wake up and it's dark. (<3)

meeyawl

@RachelTheC I know you can't exactly eat it...but a hug too. A hug because I've been there entirely too many times.

oh! valencia

Jess Zimmerman, where can we read more of your writing? This and the previous installment were so evocative, beautiful, heartbreaking.

pharmakeus

These words, together!! These words together are perfect, magic.

LacunaKale

A disagreement with a family member has lead to vastly out of proportion self loathing, followed by trying to be a helpful person to non-relatives. Feeling lonely, and worried that if your hair gets any frizzier it will become sentient. Said hair will then abandon you for life on the road.

What to eat, I don't know, but I'm having a brie and ham sandwich with plenty of mustard.

QuiteAmiable

The first feeling just hit me so hard, I didn't breathe for a minute. Jeez.

I have been away from the Hairpin for far too long.

sunflowers

Oh, wow. This is just one of my favorite series. It breaks my heart. Please, please continue. The happy one about being outside is just exactly how I feel every Saturday in Durham in the summer.

Banana Stand Money

Oh that happy one, I audibly oofed at my desk. I also feel that creamy bubble tea works for that feeling too.

Dirty Hands

@Banana Stand Money Oooh, I miss bubble tea!

sandwiches

The last one also applies to news you're keeping from yourself, although I have been eating breakfast (white toast, gently scrambled egg, sliced & very browned sausages, sriracha, and a big glass of milk) for most meals instead of cake. Maybe now is the time to transition to cake. I think Mom has some in the fridge.

Dirty Hands

@sandwiches Eggs are a good idea. I will make some soon.

rathermarvelous

FEELING: Reading a Hairpin piece that articulates everything far better than you ever could, only to realize that despite this fleeting moment of empathy and shared experience, you might not be able to replicate the effect with an actual non-internet person.

HOW TO EAT IT: Pita crackers, 1-10 cups.

Emmettalie

"you're trying to stay cool and remember that you have years to chip through that cliff but only if you don't scare them off right now by being too intense"
This is me every time I am making a new friend. I just can't seem to do anything half-way and I always end up being the odd, intense girl chasing you with a USB.

cupcakecore

I love these so so so much, amazing.

Alicima

The first one, except that the bar is too crowded now to think about breathing at all.

Eyre Apparent

@Alicima I'm right there with you. I practice swallowing that with homemade nachos and fear.

426164882@twitter

I love these moments of synchronicity - that first paragraph so perfectly describes where my brain's been at the last couple of days. Gonna start looking for some goldfish crackers asap.
(And thanks for inspiring this blog post! http://thedailycreativewriter.com/2013/07/24/a-pocketful-of-crackers/)

383740544@twitter

The first one, except that the bar is too crowded now to think about breathing at all paintings

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