Moving Words


Someday I’ll be a mature “adult” writer and let my jokes speak for themselves. But that is not this day.

This day I tell you about my move to Oakland!

Part 1- The Journey (External Edition)

Sunday I moved from Palo Alto to Oakland. It started out with me riding my bike to the U-Haul center. And the following auspicious interaction:

Laura gets off her bike at the corner and walks it down the sidewalk towards the U-Haul Center. She passes a woman with a suitcase. Laura smiles at the woman because Laura is from Indiana/Minnesota/Wisconsin and is still learning. Woman says, “You shouldn’t be on the sidewalk. You should be in the street. I’m sorry but that’s the way it is.”

Good to know the anti-bike sentiment is alive and well in the USofA.

I got my U-Haul anyway. And then I was in my U-Haul.

Fun fact: no one should be allowed to drive a vehicle that large. I felt indestructible. You should not allow people to feel indestructible. We should always be reminded of the fragility of our human bodies. We should not feel like transformers. I felt the urge to go monster-truck on a bunch of parked cars. I didn’t, but the urge was real.

I drove my small planet back to the house.

Side note: If you didn’t know it, Carol Milstein is a saint. True story.

Anyway, I arrived and started loading all my worldly belongings into the U-Haul. About half an hour later I was done. As it turns out I have a lot of things, but they are all very small and squishy.

So with a tear in my eye and a song in my heart, I drove out of Palo Alto, managed not to side-swipe anyone (that I know of), crossed the Dumbarton Bridge and did not drive off into the Bay (wonder of wonder, miracle of miracles), sang and cursed loudly to myself, repeated the phrase “Okay, Laura, just don’t hit this car” over and over, didn’t get lost trying to find my way through East Oakland, and then I was home.


Did that just happen? That just happened.

Part 2- The Arrival

The following conversation took place as I pulled my U-Haul up to the house:

Neighbor 1: You got new neighbors.

Neighbor 2: Yeah, they’re okay.

Neighbor 1: There they are, the new neighbors.

Neighbor 2: Yeah, they’re okay, long as they aren’t haters.

Laura: I’m not a hater.

Neighbors 1&2: *Blank stares*

I’m good at making friends.

Our house has red trim and is on Harrington Avenue, so I’m unofficially dubbing it the Red Harring. It’s happening.

Part 3- The Journey (Internal Edition)

Look, I have the privilege of being the author of my own difficulties. The most recent case being when I got too tired to refill my anti-depressants, missed a few days, got so depressed that I couldn’t go to work, may or may not have left a really long rambling message on someone’s phone about how sad I am that we aren’t friends anymore and how I probably am making it worse by calling and on and on and on… So… that’s on me.

I mess up my life all on my own. I moved across the country for really no reason at all. I quit jobs because I get depressed or because its just too existentially wearying to be taking out the trash as people stare disapprovingly at you and complain to your manager about your smell because you’ve been too tired to maintain proper hygiene.

So… that’s on me, too.

But I’m also really strong. I mean, body odor aside. I am capable of doing things. I get jobs, I make moves, I lift furniture. I’m such a mess, but I’m working on it.

Because I have these incredible people in my life. People who texted me or called me or ordered a pizza to my new address. People who give me love and support and encouragement at every turn. Even the act of liking my desperate, needy status is a reminder of the people in my life. You, you wonderful, beautiful people.


Avery Johnson: a wonderful, beautiful pizza– I mean people!

If I am the author of my struggles, you all are the authors of my survival. If I accomplish anything worthwhile in life, it is because of you. So, as always thank you. It will never be enough, but thank you.


One thought on “Moving Words

  1. Pingback: 2016: A Year in Review | What All The Kids Are Doing

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