I’m on holiday, instead of doing my ush life (SAME DIFF, THOUGH? What do I do?). For me a summer vacay at the cottage is a matter of melting into earth, going swimming late at night, and having an important outside project, like, “I have to go crouch in the dirt and work on my pile of sticks after I finish this cup of chips and strawberries.” Think of this as a postcard, because I want to, like, be next to you, the fibers of our sand-and-ash hair and fleece summer camp jackets static-clinging to each other, instead of hovering at a three-feet cunt-vantage point, like usual. I want to shotgun a hit of weed, but not so close-up that you can’t see the smoke move between us. Think of me whispering something, not into your ear, but into that place on your neck, that dip.
Today it rained. But here I am, hi. As ever, I want to try to reveal something of an elemental girl-truth to you, not because you don’t know them, or because I do, but because sometimes a truth or even an idea-talisman can be wholly there, already formed, but in need of an Instagrammy frame or filter. It’s not like I or anyone else could convince you of anything you didn’t already know, except maybe the veracity with which something is real, or the unfortunate verisimilitude of what should just be a spooky and horrible nightmare. And isn’t all of it? Can we just depart, though, on the retarded non-occasion of my rainy beach vacay—I don’t know why I am calling it a vacay, I’m still working and when I’m not I’m prone and gutted—from the gentler slopes of optimism and jokes and radical trampolining and the sweet, marshmallowy tokes about girl stuff and acknowledge that everything is actually the worst? You and me and everything that comes at us like warp-speed anger, rage, envy. This is what it feels like, dull and revelatory, right now with two-days distance (plus internet; I learned how to tether my iPhone). I want and need to just breathe this into your mouth before we can go back to talking about our tote-bag politics next week.
Maybe in Girl News I’ve somehow been lying, by omission, the same way that I have been like, chewing slow on popcorn, nattering, all “Girls is racist by omission.” Maybe it’s worse than I ever said; maybe my general fixations on sex, licorice, cosmetics, money, shoeses, the funner sides of masochism, frennnnnz aren’t an expression of girlitude, maybe they’re only mirage-y bummers. It’s the duty of youth to challenge corruption, said our bleach-blond man in the striped sweater, and it is, and not acknowledging the full, filthy thrust of the corruption of Girl Nation by internal and external forces because it’s nicer to just not is the opposite of our mandate of extreme realness.
It’s been a horrific week in actual Girl News, where the yellow wallpaper keeps shifting (use your Google fingers). Rihanna has been declared too sexy and anti-honesty, or something, to appear in skin cream ads; some professional jagoff from Esquire wrote a thing about how rape is so rare that it “cannot be charted” even though rape is wildly, hysterical-nitrous-oxide-laughter, overwhelmingly common but under-reported because girls are afraid of public and private retribution for their slutty ways, like sluttily existing, sluttily possessing genitals, sluttily not wanting to do sex with someone they sluttily appeared in front of; the half of America that genuinely, enthusiastically hates you and your body and what you might do with your body. No, like hates you. These are all annoying examples, though, details of this weird, hot moment where the antipathy of everyone toward girl-lives has not only tipped but like fucking linebackered into us. Every time I tweet about rape I almost instantly delete it, because there is @-silence from girls (who that is for) and this bizarre condescension from dudes as to if I am OK, and, yes, of course, I’m way over it (#feministboredom), but no, of course not. Of course there is an enduring dissonance between the tropical bounty of a girl life, which I maintain is just shivery-sexy and inclusive of magic and totally satisfying, but then there is The Remembering. It’s like finding out the worst fact of your life, the sickest secret, except, brand-new every day, every time the fact of your breasts makes your four minutes at the gas station an experience of hellish WTFyness. (And then there is The Forgetting, like, how by the end of the first season of Girls, all my friends were like “Ooooh Adam is great” and “Aw, Adam” and “Adam is right” and “I love Adam” but HI hallo did you skip the ep—impossible—where she is like obviously not getting off when they have sex? We do it to ourselves, is what I mean, because there is no other way to live but to forget.)
I’m six-months dry now—I didn’t quit alcohol because I’m an alcoholic; alcohol might be the only toxin that I can have in my apartment and not become magnetized to when I’m pacing between athletically devastating text messages, candy, and pills, but alcohol makes the essential delusions of life-control harder to maintain; it is by most measures healthier for me to drink a little, than not—and such dull sobriety is a boring, shitty non-hallucino-framework with which to finally address the collective truth of 15 years of consciousness. Like, it sucks, but I need you to know all this with me. Like if we’re going to talk about how we like to get fucked and go shopping, this is the other side. It’s mandatory.
All of this puts me in the bell jar but only if it were disco-ball mirrored with broken pieces and the sun caught it in that right way and set everything around me on fire, and then I got set on fire, and it was all on fire, except instead of melting I just evaporated, slow, like so many weed shotguns, up and away, like that. Do you think everything is the worst, but also, that nothing really matters? Probs not; probs you are not under a delicate bell jar in the woods. OK so just remember this for me, as if I’d scratched it so lightly onto your arm, on your leg, wove it into your tangled hair. xoxoxo
Follow Kate on Twitter @KateCarraway
Previously - Girls and Fashion