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I'm sleepless in Beirut.

I don't feel like seeing Hugg, even though my flight is in six hours. He didn't even offer to take me to the airport, which I would have done if he were traveling.

After last night, something changed. It could just be my lack of sleep, but I think it goes deeper than that.

Ever since I split up with Mr. Keller, I wanted to take my time off from men.

Men. I love them too much, but I have loved them too often and for far too long. My entire life since first grade could be retold in chapters titled Jim, Joe, Paul or Tyrone. I feel the need to write a chapter of my own. Only then, the next one…the one after my monologue could be a co-author book, something a little deeper than a newspaper article, something that could be eloquent prose!

Right, as though the universe caters to our ultimatums.

Mr. Keller, at the time, was a welcome antidote to Botticelli. He was the complete opposite, the other extreme. He neutralized Botticelli, got him out of my system, but he himself was too high a dose for me to handle.

Free of Mr. Keller, I felt like anything was now possible. I had the whole of me to start working on my "Big Plan". So who puts his foot in the door?

The Pope.

As holy as he may have been regarded in the Church of Sexiness, The Pope, with his daily sermons, became too much of an idol. I wouldn't say I wasted my time and energy while I was with him, but I could have done a lot of other, more productive things. Love is the worst thing that could happen to a man or a woman of business. If you want to hurt your opponent where it "doesn't", introduce them to someone irresistible. Not only will you win, but, ironically, you will be thanked for it.

Once the cult of The Pope became démodé, I found myself, once again, at the foot of that promising mountain, The Great Big Plan. The sun was rising and I had my good shoes on.

Hail the sun, and you'll be sent an eclipse.


Just as with The Pope, Hugg sauntered in unannounced. The whole episode was on the bottom of my list of expectations. It was like falling in love with a brother. Because, yes, at the beginning, I felt like I had finally found my big brother, the guy who would watch out for me, the guy who would grind the bad guys to dust and the guy in whom I could confide in.

Despite all our discussions of purity and other fictional Homo sapienesque abstractions, we turned out to be no more evolved than a regular serengeti episode on Discovery Channel.

Yes, it is crudely put. Yes, it is an unfair omission of poetry. Yes, it is a breach of my ethics. But it is also very much a colossal collapse of my ethics to promise to not fall in love and still pour love potions. I don't feel so good about it anymore, the passion is definitely lacking.

But passion is waiting for me outside, and it's a passion one finds on one's own. Let me correct that: the passion is right here within me, I can feel it struggling. I need to help myself to help myself. I NEED TO HELP MYSELF, TO HELP MYSELF.

This surely sounds like a bizarre method of resuscitation, as bizarre as making out with one's fist, but bizarre gets you places.

Bizarre is driving to work in the morning and seeing a guy on the side of the road (actually, it was in the middle of the road) bending over a spilled sack of grains and scooping them up with his hands. It makes you think. It makes you grateful. Because, shit, I've never had to do that in my life, so why am I complaining about waking up in the morning? Why am I not getting enough sleep to actually enjoy what I, honestly, really like to do? Why am I not moving forward fast enough where I have the potential to excel?

Baggage. A handbag full of disorganized chapters, of Jims, Joes, Pauls and Tyrones creating unnecessary drag on my Greased Lightning.

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