04 December 2010

Street Food & Spanish Guitars

Three weeks after getting back from my dad's wedding cruise (three weeks after I had technically been dumped several times)XBFJ & I spent what would be our last weekend together. I admit neither of us understood how the breaking up was supposed to work. We decided we ultimately wanted to be friends. We foolishly thought we could just switch. Let me tell you why that was just not possible.

21 August 2010
We had tickets for Rodrigo y Gabriela. They had been sitting on the fridge for months. There was also a street food festival that day. It was to be a friendly outing, you know, with friends. But there was an underlying hostility that eventually could not be contained.

We started pleasantly enough with a movie. We saw The Other Guys, which I really liked. Afterward we walked down by city hall, where I saw the six handed Buddha sculpture I forgot existed. I admit as a producer, I see things on the news and I forget they're actually very close to me. Giant Buddha included. It's impressive. The statue had been gated after some vandalism, but (as I recall) the artist didn't care and the gates were removed.

We took the train to the Mission for the street food festival. It was supposed to be the best street food from all of San Francisco squished into one neighborhood for one weekend of delicious sampling. You may not know, street food is a big deal here. Some of the most delicious treats come out of trucks, carts and stands. We were both excited. We got there early, but not early enough. The lines, while moving, were 30 or 40 people deep. As there was not that much street available for each booth, the lines were curving and running parallel down the sidewalks, making it difficult to pass. XBFJ, who is anti crowd and who skipped breakfast, bailed. He just left. I was not invited to go with him. I was just there, alone. I tried to embrace it. I told myself I was on my own anyway, that I would be going to all kinds of events by myself, and that I may as well see how I do.

So I picked a line with foods I thought I would actually eat. I paid $7 for a halibut ceviche. I didn't like it. But I felt like I was supposed to love it, after all, the hipsters and foodies were loving it. Not only did I not want to eat it, I didn't feel like I could throw it away. Of course everyone was watching me, that lonely girl who just came to eat and not to socialize because she has no friends. I scurried away to find anything that might be delicious and that was not funnel cake, as that seemed like cheating.

I eventually found an empanada line. But the fryer broke and there was to be a 30 minute wait for a replacement. Everything else in that four block radius seemed to be made of beef or pork or concoctions I did not dare try. I tell you it was a very stressful time. I was determined to enjoy myself, by myself. But not only was I alone, I didn't have anything to eat. I was failing fast. I got in line for some fried vegetables and hoped for the best.

Not just fried vegetables, fried vegetables with a mayonnaise based sauce.

Ta daaa.

You really can't go wrong with frying anything, especially asparagus. So that mission was successful. XFBJ returned to hang out in the beer garden, so it seemed like the day (in terms of loneliness) was improving. But he was off, angry or upset about something. He freaked when he realized he bought drink tickets but didn't get a bracelet. So much so, that the beer garden security guy (using soothing tones) explained it was not a big deal, that all he had to do was go back to the stand and get a bracelet. I offered to return my drink tickets so we could leave. I was not about to sit and drink alone. Even I have a limit. He insisted we stay, and you always do what the unstable person suggests right?

The beer garden was a beer garden. We had some drinks. He took my picture and we talked what-ifs. What if my next boyfriend was this. Or what if his next girlfriend was that. We made fun of those imaginary people that would replace us for each other. It was comfortable to a point, as long as I didn't give it too much thought.

We went to Berkeley for the concert. XBFJ discussed living there. It's sunnier there and if you haven't been able to tell, he does not do well under clouds or in winter. He just sleeps and is somber. But he emphatically denies having Seasonal Affective Disorder. So take that for what it's worth. We had dinner there and went to the show.

See us, we're friends. At that moment.

Gabriela (heart)


The concert was fantastic. I first saw Rodrigo y Gabriela while I was working overnights. They were on The Late Late Show and my TV was muted. Just seeing how into it they were hooked me. And then I turned up the volume and was envloped. Seeing them in concert was great. I was so excited. I let the rest of the day go to be happy in that moment. And it just about worked. Until XBFJ called me crazy. Not "you're silly and watch cartoons" crazy, but "you have something wrong with you" crazy. This so and so who threw not one, but two tantrums at a street food festival, called me crazy. This _____ who dumped me out of concern for my best interset without consulting me called me crazy. I know I have my issues but at best he is the pot to my kettle. Judging only his behavior in the previous month, he had no legs on which to stand and make that claim. For the first time I was angry.

Who was he to continually go out of his way to make me feel bad? Where is his accountability? Hadn't he done enough? Why the need to upset me further? Why during my happy concert? I tried to shake it off, to get back to my happy place but it was never the same. There was no going back. The damage continued after the show and after more pointless squabbling, we went our separate ways. I was still angry, but I was also back to being sad. One would have thought we could spend a day together. Well maybe you wouldn't have. But I certainly would did. And I was wrong. Furthermore I saw no hope of us being friends. It was like losing him again. On top of that, it would be four months before I listened to Rodrigo y Gabriela again.

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