The smell of coffee

I didn’t get out of bed until 1:00 p.m. today, which wasn’t entirely surprising seeing as I was up until 4:00 a.m. doing God knows what on the internet. Just surfing aimlessly really, trying to make myself feel better about the fight I had with my husband last night. On the other hand, it isn’t like me to sleep for nine hours straight. At the very most I need seven hours’ sleep, and I can usually function perfectly well on five if I need to. Recently, though, I’ve been sleeping a lot.

I don’t think it’s that I’m depressed (although I probably am on some mild level), so I’m going to put it down to my allergies, and not having enough money to eat properly. For the last month or so, I’ve definitely been feeling malnourished. I don’t think Midwestern Man quite gets just how hungry I have been recently. He doesn’t eat all that much less than me, but we have very different body types and metabolisms, it would seem. If I don’t eat, I get tired, irritable, emotional and depressed very quickly. If I don’t have breakfast in the morning, I’ll literally collapse with fatigue by around 10:00 a.m. I just don’t understand people (like my husband, actually) who are able to skip breakfast with no adverse consequences.

I’m happier tonight, though, because after a weekend of yet more cancellations (what the hell is going on?! Is it the rain?!), I did finally see one client tonight. I was finally able to go to the grocey store – in fact, I just got back – and I bought myself $80-worth of food. Most importantly, I have a huge big bag of coffee, which will last me ages. I don’t care how bad it gets, as long as I can a nice steaming cup of coffee or tea in the morning, the world is at least half-way OK.

Judith, over at Vicarious Rising left me a comment, which has left me feeling a bit upset, though. I’m not upset at her in the slightest – in fact, I appreciate it when people I like tell me what they really think of me. What’s the point of people coming on here and just kissing my ass?! Nonetheless, the comment (that I’ve been making a lot of excuses for myself lately, and that I’m better than that) has set off a wave of paranoia. Maybe it’s not that I’ve just only started making excuses for myself….maybe I did it all along, but nobody noticed because I just didn’t post every day before. Maybe I’m a really awful person, and nobody noticed that before either for the same reason. Or maybe they have noticed that, and that’s why I have no male readers anymore. Maybe I’m a really terrible writer, and that’s why people don’t comment as much as they used to.

I probably am making excuses and, um, I’m not trying to make excuses for making excuses :-), but I honestly don’t know what to do to change my life right now. It seems I’m caught in a vicious circle. There really is no way to stop being a full-time sex worker unless I have a work permit and a car. I can’t, as Terry over at Pandabox33 suggested become a dogwalker or a cleaner, or whatever other jobs she suggested. Yes, I could do those jobs and get paid “under the table” but how would I get to my clients in this city of terrible public transport? One time when I hurt my foot and couldn’t ride my bike to a job, it took me two hours to travel four miles on a bus here. My life in this city takes place within maybe a four-mile radius for a very simple reason – it’s impossible to get to some places without a car. Even if public transport wasn’t a problem, how do I support myself while building up a client base? I need to eat now, and any money I have left over goes towards paying off debt, so how do I do that while I have one dog-walking client a week in the beginning? You say I have choices, and yes, these are choices, but they don’t seem like very good ones to me. They seem just as shitty, and just as unlucrative, as my current situation. I’d rather stick with what I know, so at least I don’t get run over trying to cycle across a highway on my bike.

I wouldn’t mind suffering if any of the suggested jobs tied in somehow to my future plans, but they don’t. Doesn’t it make more sense to use the spare time I have as an erotic masseuse (at least this job gives me a lot of that!) to volunteer in schools? At least that way I strengthen my résumé for the day when I actually can apply for a proper teaching job.

(Bugger it! I posted this stupid thing one millisecond too late, so I missed my midnight deadline for NaBloPoMo.)


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9 thoughts on “The smell of coffee

  1. pandabox33 October 12, 2009 at 5:34 am Reply

    Petrichor, you can dog walk and whatever in your neighborhood. You don’t have to go across the city for that. There are postings (usually) at banks, grocery stores, newspapers. Choose what appeals to you. You can post also on a billboard or on craigslist or whatever saying you want to tutor young kids or high schoolers. Things do not have to be so complicated. Trust yourself and be kind to yourself, look for simple alternatives.
    I won’t comment on the “excuses” subject, you seem to have the subject in your head which means it’s going to do a bout de chemin by itself.

    • petrichoric October 12, 2009 at 9:08 am Reply

      I’m trying not to get offended by your constant career advice, as I know you mean well. I live in a poor African American neighbourhood. I’m more likely to get eaten by one of the ‘hoods starving and neglected pit bulls than I am to find somebody who’d like me to walk it. Why do you think I have seven pets?! It’s because people here are too poor to look after their pets, and are not knowledgeable enough to get them spayed or neutered. While some yuppies have moved in, and are gentrifying the place, there are not enough of them for me to make a career out of dogwalking. If I say I’d have to go across town to get clients, it’s simply because I’d have to go across town to get clients. I

      Your suggestions are all very good for the long-term, but there really is no way I’d be able to make money out of dogwalking quickly. It would be a long, slow process. I know because I have a friend who’s doing that very thing. She’s got lots of work now, but it took a while, and she works all over the city with, yes, a car. As regards tutoring, same thing. Don’t you think that with a degree in languages and a Master’s, too, I didn’t think of tutoring already? I check out the Craigslist tutoring possibilities all the time…and guess where they are? All in the rich, west or nothern parts of town. I googlemap the locations and, it’s like, yup, that would take me three buses, and three hours to get to. Essentially I would spend most of my day travelling to see one client for maybe $30. It’s just not worth it.

      Also, as regards your other suggestions like cleaning….There are so many illegal Mexicans here doing that very thing that even if I could find a job, the wages would be so incredibly low that again that it would be pointless.

      This is an emergency. I need money, and I need it now, and none of your suggestions are going to help me in the short-term.

  2. chris October 12, 2009 at 9:20 am Reply

    Interesting to read your blog, and thanks for the comment on mine. Is it a problem working in the business that you are in? Do you feel bad about it, other than you rather be working in the teaching profession? If not, than don’t worry about it, do it until you can pay off debt, find a place closer to where you’d like to live, etc. Until then, feed your soul, read, take walks, go for runs in nature, find a place to swim, etc. I support you and I admire you for what you are doing.

    stay strong.

    PS– I’m jealous about your coffee purchase, I just ran out and am not getting paid for another 2 weeks, arrggg…

    • petrichoric October 12, 2009 at 10:23 am Reply

      Hello! Is your blog “Mendoza’s Life Simply Put” ( I’m asking because I couldn’t link to you from your comment.

      You asked if I feel bad about working in the sex industry. I presume you’re wondering if I feel guilty. Well, I can’t say I wake up every day thinking “Yippee! Yet another day in which I get to give some poor woman’s husband a handjob!” and I do definitely prefer seeing clients who are single or divorced. However, I can’t say that I feel guilty. I’m doing what I need to get by for the time being. It is what it is. The hardest thing about it is feeling unfulfilled and that I’m not making a contribution to society.

      Sorry about your lack of coffee. Life really is just that little bit more miserable without a nice dose of caffeine, eh?!

  3. yogurtry October 12, 2009 at 11:06 am Reply

    the catch 22. some cities have well designed bus systems. they get you there in a timely fashion. others have convoluted systems that take hours. it’s why the city buses are nearly empty. these are cities where lack of access to a car is a major impediment to employment. so I do understand your plight.

    so eat well for now, drink your coffee and take good care of yourself while you think and plot your way out of your rut. you’ll get there.

  4. SilverTiger January 7, 2010 at 2:18 am Reply

    Just a quickie about missed deadlines: are you aware that you can edit the date on a post? This means you can backdate (or postdate) your article and it will appear as written on that date.

    Given that WordPress is used all around the world and in all time zones, manipulating the date on a post hardly seems like cheating 🙂

    • petrichoric January 7, 2010 at 12:44 pm Reply

      Oh, I didn’t know that I could edit the date on my post. I looked to see if I could, but never found anything. I’ll know in future, but I don’t think I’m going to bother changing the date to January 1st on my first post of the year because I missed a post a couple of days ago, so now it doesn’t really matter that the first post has the wrong date. I’ve already failed the NaBloPoMo challenge! Bah!

      • SilverTiger January 7, 2010 at 12:57 pm Reply

        If you use WordPress’s editor to create posts, on the right-hand side you will see “Publish immediately Edit” and if you click on “Edit” it brings up a box to put the date and time in. You can post-edit date and time also.

        • petrichoric January 7, 2010 at 11:39 pm Reply

          Wow, thank you for the tip! You’re a fountain of WordPress knowledge!

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