Shedding the Glitter

In just twenty-four hours, a pal who’s a former coworker will head off into the world, bulking up her resume and taking a wild ride on a train towards a Real Future. The kind without an expiration date on her physical being, the kind that people don’t ask when she’ll get a real job, when she’ll make something of yourself when she grows up. She’s heading out into the world. How terrifying, I think, after coming out of the Dark Box, shedding the glitter, staring down the sun, being a daydweller. Cheers to my pal on her journey.

At first I thought I was going to dance for two weeks. When I made a week’s worth of pay my first night, I promptly quit my other job and resigned myself to the idea of finishing college while stripping. When I dropped out of college (boredom; no longer seeing a clear path towards a future I wanted), I resigned myself to the idea that I might be in for a few more years. Over the past few years, I’ve wound up on the fast track to a full dancing career. I haven’t stopped dancing in nearly four years. What’s nine more of freedom from a desk?

But wait.

I could do something. I could do something. I could do something. I could do something. I could do something.

What? Anything? I can still have dreams at twenty-four? Okay. Well. If I get to pick, I’ll be a….

…a what? I’m stumped, right there, at: “I want to be ______ when I grow up.” I don’t know how to fill in the blank line with an answer I like. An answer I can turn in on my paper. I have no idea. Right now, I’m dancing. I’ve been a nanny, a horse trainer, a riding instructor, a waitress, a hostess, a coat-check girl, a racetrack groom, a desk jockey, a computer monkey, a home loan bitch, retail overnight stock, a pizza maker, a stripper. I crash-landed in most of them.

It was easier being four. “I want to be a jockey,” or, “I want to train horses.” Until I grew too tall and past the usual weight, and horse training started paying like shit after the recession hit in full force, and my college and medical debt and car payment smacked me in the face with the realities of being an actual adult.

In the past year, I’ve watched this friend go from full-fledged, card-carrying house girl to testing her wings on her future beyond it. In that year, I’ve narrowed down my choice this far, feeling the future closing in on me: I would like to work outside. As in, outside of the inside of buildings, in open air.

That’s it. That’s all I’ve got. I’m twenty-four, and I’ve decided I want to work outside when I grow up. There.

I have about nine more years to expand on that obscenely general idea, get educated on something specific while wanting to learn everything there is to know about everything instead, and run with it. Or else I become one of those strippers who retires to cashierhood, hanging onto my last bit of femininity with fake nails while scanning and bagging knockoff adult diapers and hot dogs for a living. Or else I become an accidental desk monkey again, pounding a series of keys between coffee breaks, thanking the great white baby Jesus for allowing me to have 80/20 health insurance for a thousand dollars a month. Or else I wind up in some service sector job, growing old on my feet, still slinging some kind of item to cater to the whims and fantasies of patrons. Or I dip into the one-year-trade-school world of hairstyling, set up shop, and declare that an unwanted career. All very real retirement plans. None very appealing to me.

I need to see the sky. I need the sky to make me feel little when the sun or the moon is highest in the sky, and nostalgic when they’re hanging near the horizon, begging memories of this and that, of things I’d forgotten, of people I loved, of all of the other times when the sun did the same thing. I need the sky to absorb the blue from everything around me, soak it up, hang onto it, give it back in tan-lines and freckles and sun-streaks in my hair. The big sky, unobstructed by hundreds of years of man’s blemishes to the horizon. I need my stars and my grass and the smells of the seasons and rain on my face and the overwhelming, all-encompassing sound of absolute silence when the world vibrates without intrusion, until the telescoping sound of a lone animal rustling or calling shatters it all.

Can I make a career out of that?

And can I still celebrate Benjamin Franklin’s birthday every January 17th when I do?

Happy 307th, Benjamin. Here’s to hundred dollar bills traded for views behind g-strings in dark corners while bass thumps through everyone’s heads. Cheers, old man.

To another year of having your face traded for fondling myself in front of others.

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~ by The Stiletto-Shod One on January 17, 2013.

2 Responses to “Shedding the Glitter”

  1. I don’t know if you remember me, but we talked and I told you about my application for the police. You should consider it. It might be something you’d like. Anywho, good luck miss. :D

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