b.b.s.

angelina

is this thing on

ok go!

i'm always enthusiastic about the things my friends make, especially jen, but it took me a little while to try this out because i heard y'all were getting incredibly raw with your feelings.

that's pretty swell actually, except lately i've been composed of nothing but feelings, an ever-flowing font of feelings, and i've been afraid of writing them down because in doing so i feel like i would reach a kind of finality to them. i suppose it's fair to say i don't want the reality that is real right now, to be real.

i don't have a choice in the matter.

tonight is new year's eve, and we'll tell ourselves that this is some kind of milestone with which to note a different era, the kind of annual era we desperately want to surprise and motivate us to the greatness we thought of or sought after before. 

of course, there is no milestone, those feelings of an era ending are determined by one's own feelings and are oft unpredictable. and so as i watch others embrace the faux-era-rollover i feel like this year in particular i'm having trouble playing along. i felt like i had my new era roll over some time in october, and the last few months have been adapting to this 'new normal'. i should note here i'm 110% okay with the ritual of feigning an era turnover. it is a thing that prompts self-awareness and self-reflection, and those moments are too few in our shared traditions that we move through together.

2014 was a ridiculous year.

there were too many people who tried to commit suicide and far too many that succeeded. every time i am depressed for even a moment my mind turns to these people. i will always fight for you, whether you're here or haunting my memory with your moments - i can't do anything but love you into the ages for everything you brought into this world. 

whenever someone you care about or even someone you don't care about seems depressed (just apply this to every human, ok?) drop everything. there isn't a moment to waste, for i have wasted too many of them in doubting my actions; whether they would want to have my hand to get through it or not. and i can tell you this doubt will lead you only toward regret.

never fucking hesitate there again.

i think i fell in love again in 2014, but i've watched it fall apart before even getting started for what, in hindsight, seems like really trivial reasons. i thought about writing them a letter to say how i feel but i can't stomach anymore rejection. instead i'm writing songs but i'm pretty sure by the time those are done it will be too late. a part of me wonders what i did wrong. the other part is pissed off for being wronged. an impasse before me and i just sit here watching time run away from us. i put certain songs on repeat and wonder if they do the same. it's like i'm 16 again and in love for the first time because i can't fucking figure out how to navigate. i'm mildly embarrassed by this fact, but as a policy angelina fabbro does not waste time on that emotion because embarrassment is rarely productive, and rarely a teacher.

i quit my job without having a plan and this was largely the most adult decision i've made in years. i hadn't been happy there in a long time, in fact i would largely say that the majority of my time there i was unhappy. i climbed the ranks and managed to get into a position to affect change on a level that i felt good about. bureaucracy and problematic internal behaviors made getting done some of the things i wanted to get done feel futile. i watched a repeat harasser stick around because HR botched *several* complaints. another woman i know left the company for similar reasons in the same time frame. we had brunch once a while ago and admit that we would have stayed if people had treated us like we were valuable. if people had listened to the severity without keeping it at arm's length, and taken action the way we'd asked - which was always reasonable and actionable. it hurt to sit there and remind ourselves that companies are not here to protect us, they are here to profit their shareholders. even in the case of a non-profit that functions largely like a for-profit corporation. and we both knew this already, but i think we both hoped secretly to be the exception. maybe we'd found one place that we could fight for, and it would fight for us also.

never assume you will be the exception. you will be wrong. when in doubt, measure.

sidenote: when companies refer to their employees as 'headcount' and a resource to be traded around, it dehumanizes them.

when i say that quitting my job without a plan was the most adult thing i've done in a while, this is because past angelina would have probably continued being unhappy and argued that the new title/promotion looked good on paper, and was thus good for my career. at some point i realized i have enough skills and ideas that i don't need to be putting aside my own happiness for long term success. since i was 15 and had to move out and all through my years of schooling to boot, i've had a job and always planned at least six months in advance. i am calculating and methodical, she says out loud to remind herself. except this time i wasn't, and i broke the pattern, and it has been weird and scary and probably exactly what i need.

i've spent the last month and a half making art quietly with myself, and spending 1:1 time (okay sometimes like 5:1, that's where i max out on complexity in social situations though) with people who i respect and admire. the music i'm making is starting to be less terrible, and i can acknowledge that and i feel good about it, even. i am very self-critical and to allow myself some praise once in a while is a new thing. i think i'm better for it.

there is a mentor i have in the javascript community who probably doesn't know he is a mentor to me, but i've taken all of the advice he's given me in passing over the years. i've never told him this; never followed up on any of it. but i take the advice, and he's right most of the time, and i've let this person lead me though the last few years of my career. we had brunch a while ago and they told me that i'm on the short list as someone to consider as a co-founder of a company, and although i'm sure i kept a straight face inside i was the most honored i'd ever been. i find myself trying to figure out what to do in the meantime to impress them. when i told someone about this they said, 'it sounds like you already have'. but this is me we're talking about, and i'm never standing still, and so i want to go even further. it's not very often i find someone i genuinely want to impress, it's quite a weird feeling for me to have generally - especially toward someone i'm really not that close to in the conventional sense.

i start a new job in the latter half of january. so there is that uncertainty crossed off the list.

i'm living by myself again which i desperately wanted to do, but adjusting to that has been a weird dance of anxiety and relief - it means that another person and i have to redefine our relationship in this new context. this is going well but it's still really weird and a significant change after living together with them for almost four years.

i don't know if i'll be living in vancouver or new york in a month. i don't think it really matters and it says nothing of my preference for cities, in truth. i go where the opportunity takes me: fuck being ready, we know that idea is a trap. other people seem hung up on how big a deal moving cities is, but i think because i haven't really felt like i live anywhere in particular for the last two years that it's less like moving between cities and more like settling down again. it is a feeling that is hard to explain, and in re-reading this paragraph it is clear to me that even i don't understand it. still, everyone needs to chill out about it. it's less of an anxiety point to me than my art or this gut-wrenching heartfeel, i promise.

truly my problems are first world problems, and beyond that they are the problems of a very privileged person. i'm doing my best to keep it all in perspective and i'm grateful for y'all for patience and guidance. i try and be a less shitty human, i don't always get it right, but know that i won't let that stop me. i am stubborn and without a lot of pride so i'll keep at it.

i don't know what i want to build yet. my goals are reuniting with an aspiration i had in 2012 but saw myself get away from in 2013-2014. but you know that when i figure it out i'll turn into a steam engine again.

anyhow, i guess that's all i have to say about 2014. tell me you love me, internet. i need to hear it right now.