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Authors: Chasity Glass

even if i am.

BOOK: even if i am.
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even if i am.

even if i am.
an e-memoir

chasity glass

Copyright © 2012 by Chasity Glass

www.chasityglass.com

www.evenifiam.com

All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, distributed, or transmitted in any form or by any means, including photocopying, recording, or other electronic or mechanical methods, without the prior written permission of the publisher, except in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical reviews and certain other noncommercial uses permitted by copyright law.

Shilhon House

9236 SW 40th Avenue

Portland, OR 97214

ISBN: 978-0-9856787-7-7

ISBN: 978-0-9856787-9-1 (e-book)

ISBN: 978-0-9856787-2-2 (multimedia e-book)

Audio excerpts from “The Anthony Project” copyright 2007 Royal York Funston

Excerpt from “Real Simple” by Pepe Deluxe copyright 2003 Catskills Records

Excerpt from “Flying High” by Jem copyright 2004 ATO Records, LLC

Excerpt from “It’s Okay To Think About Ending” by Earlimart copyright 2004 Palm Pictures, LLC

Excerpt from "I Melt with You" by Nouvelle Vague, copyright 2005 Luaka Bop, Inc.

Excerpt from “Be Mine” by R.E.M. copyright 1996 R.E.M./Athens Ltd.

Excerpt from "Crosses" by Jose Gonzalez, copyright (C) 2006 Mute Corporation US.

Excerpt from "Hold You In My Arms" by Ray LaMontagne , copyright (P) 2004 Stone Dwarf, LLC, under license to The RCA Music Group

Excerpt from "Let Myself Fall" by Rosie Thomas, copyright 2003 Sub Pop Record

Excerpt from "Moonstruck" written by John Patrick Shanley

Excerpt from "The Family Stone" written by Thomas Bezucha

Excerpt from
Wisdom of a Broken Heart
by Susan Piver copyright 2010 Susan Piver.

Cover and book design by Royal York Funston

www.ryarts.com

eBook development by WildElement

www.WildElement.ca

Printed in the United States of America

First Edition, 2012

even if i am.

even if i am.

copyright

dedication

preface

1 - inspiration information

2 - real simple

3 - lovely day

4 - ghost of things to come

5 - la cienega just smiled

6 - flying high

7 - don’t stop

8 - breathe me

9 - waiting for my real like to begin

10 - our way to fall

11 - it’s okay to think about ending

12 - shelter

13 - happy birthday

14 - no woman no cry

15 - jealousy rides with me

16 - joga

17 - i want you

18 - songs I listened to five years ago

19 - i melt with you

20 - ache for you

21 - secret heart

22 - rainy day

23 - be mine

24 - naked as we come

25 - in the round

26 - mexico

27 - in the deep

28 - what sarah said

29 - EEE. EEE. EEE.

30 - details of the war

31 - song for a sleeping girl

32 - a change at christmas

33 - in the sun

34 - don’t let it bring you down

35 - don’t die before your day

36 - how it ends

37 - orange sky

38 - a song on the radio

39 - vein of stars

40 - theme song form the x-files

41 - everything’s not lost

42 - house of cards

43 - no song attached

44 - hope there’s someone

45 - another day without music

46 - transatlanticism

47 - jet engine noises

48 - hold you forever

49 - church bells

50 - daa na na na

51 - a classical station

52 - i couldn’t attach the song i wanted to send with this

53 - track 3

acknowledgments

for Anthony,

for my parents,

for my in-laws,

and for those

who’ve pedaled alongside me

on a bike ride…

preface

even if i am.
is a true story.

It is both a book and an e-memoir because it is told in more than words. Pictures, audio interviews, music and web links in the multimedia e-book permit a truer and more personal telling. Apple’s iPad supports this format today, and I highly recommend it for a complete experience. However, to share this story with a broader audience, it is also available as a printed book and standard e-book.

In the interest of privacy, some names, e-mail addresses, and other personal details have been replaced or removed. Otherwise, all e-mails, blog posts, audio clips, and photographs are actual and unaltered.

Over 12 million people are diagnosed with cancer each year.

This is the story of one… and the girl who loved him.

chapter one

inspiration information

People are really romantic about the beginning of things. I’m reasoning this as my friend babbles on about how, for the first time, she is “experiencing love, instead of trying to figure it all out.” She’s saying she doesn’t want to waste time on unnecessary boyfriends: “After all, I’m twenty-eight.” She has a head full of doubt and a heart full of promise. “It feels as though I’m always thinking of him,” she chirps, “and I just know somehow he’s out there thinking of me.” She then chatters on about fresh starts, clean slates and moving to Colorado for love.

I am still aware, distantly, of those late-twenties sentiments and world-of-possibility statements. I said them myself, about five years ago. I too thought that love — my own little bundle of doubt and promise — was neither A nor B. Love wasn’t a right or left turn. Love was a continuum. It was the path to knowing everything would be all right. Knowing that “somehow he was out there thinking of me,” and that I wasn’t facing life alone. It’s not that I believe in everlasting love anymore; I know better than to think in infinite terms now. Yet, if it weren’t for some native sense of romance I wouldn’t have done things like traveled to Australia on a whim or flown to Italy. I definitely wouldn’t have volunteered to eat ten chocolate cupcakes in five minutes, helping raise money for cancer awareness. If it weren’t for love I wouldn’t have the words “even if i am” tattooed on my arm. I wouldn’t have Anthony’s last name.

“Oooh, good song…” My friend points to the ceiling as we listen to the music in the coffee shop we sit — “Hollow Talk” by Choir of Young Believers.

“Chas?” Her starry eyes shift as she asks, “Did you feel the same when you met Anthony?”

Her words rattle me.

The chorus sings, “Everything goes back to the beginning.”


“My God, he’s hot.”

That was the first thing I ever said about him.
My God he’s hot
, as if I was a fourteen year-old Valley Girl.

“Yeah, but someone THAT attractive has to have some major personal issues, right?” Emily’s humor was always straight to the point. “I bet he’s a total asshole.”

She and I were standing at the copy machine. We just kept staring. It was hard not to. He was stunning. Tall and slender, fashionably messy dark hair complemented with a little stubble on his face. He wore a fuzzy black sweater over a white collared shirt and jeans… Even with a small moth hole in the shoulder, sexy. No question.

“I bet he sleeps with girls on first dates,” Emily sneered.

“I bet he doesn’t even go on first dates, just functions with one-nighters.”

Surely he heard Emily and I snickering because he turned toward us. His smile was the last thing I expected.

“Oh, shit. Emily. QUICK! Copy something.”

He looked down at his feet in embarrassment and returned to his conversation. He glanced back to see if we were still staring, sent another sexy half-smile in my direction.

“Okay, THAT smile is kind of hot.”

“Yeah.” I blushed, too. “I’d sleep with him on a first date.”


I had just started working at Creative, the overtly trendy post-production house that now included a DVD department. My first assignment was to help drive some dramatic project revolving around Bette Davis and Joan Crawford.

“OHMYGOD!” I could hear Emily screech while running into my office, “You will NEVER guess who we have for an editor!”

Oh hell. “You’ve got to be kidding me. Out of fifteen editors…”

Emily was an excellent coordinator. Her dry wit complemented my sarcasm. Even as she updated me on the particulars of the project, she felt comparable to a cold beer on a hot day and a good long laugh. “Go downstairs and introduce yourself. When you get back, call me with the details. I’ll put money down that he tries to sleep with you.”

“Well then, I better introduce myself.”


I’m not sure why the company was arranged on two floors, producers on the seventh, editors on the sixth. Space, I guess. Most took the elevator. I liked the stairs. Plus, the bathroom was on the way. I could fix my hair before the introduction.

I was apprehensive. Especially since I insulted him an hour ago.
Please God, tell me he didn’t hear that.
I walked slowly until I stood at his door, hesitating as a noisy rock ballad escaped from behind it. I lifted my fist to knock, considered how I’d actually introduce myself if he had heard the insult. Our boss Kaethy turned the corner, headed toward me. I quickly knocked, appearing busy.

“Come in.”

He turned from his computer and smiled broadly, easily persuading me to enter.

“HI, I’M CHAS,” I yelled over the loud music.

He turned it down. “Ahhh, so you’re the producer assigned to clean up this mess of a project. I’m Anthony.”

He stood to shake my hand, stumbling around his desk and coffee table. A true gentleman. His excitable smile made me smile. Huge. And he smelled good. Damn good. I took a deep inhale, then realized I was still shaking his hand. Minutes passed, possibly days.
Silence. Awkward. Do I even know English? Words. Speak. Produce!
I immediately dropped his hand like a hot potato.

“Soooo, where are we at with the project now?”
Smooth. Chas, real smooth.
Then wiped my clammy palm on my jeans.

I was anxious, but our dialogue flowed as we discussed the Bette Davis and Joan Crawford assignment. Nerves had me chatting too casually, asking questions about previous careers, college. I even told Anthony about working at a gas station in high school, describing it as my favorite job, because I “liked the outfit, a striped shirt.”

“Well,” I said, cutting myself short, “I suppose I should get back to my desk. By now I’ll have hundreds of e-mails to reply to.”

“Hey, one more question before you go.”

“Sure.”

“Were you and Emily checking me out earlier today?” Again, with that sexy half-smile.

“Maybe?” I teased.

“I thought so.”

I gave Anthony an awkward grin and quickly closed his office door behind me, practically ran out of there before he asked if I had insulted him too. On the commute back to my desk, I replayed our conversation in my mind. I wondered if he was really amused with my gas pumping abilities or just humoring me. Probably the latter. Asshole.


Back at my computer, I checked my e-mail. The inbox was overflowing, but I only noticed the most recent arrival.

From:
[email protected]
To:
[email protected]
Sent:
Wednesday, February 16, 6:09 p.m.
Subject:
inspiration

I just wanted to say “hi.”

again.

in hopes to spark another conversation with you,

or inspiration in you,

or at least give us a continued recess

from our good friends bette & joan.

a.

I couldn’t believe Anthony e-mailed. Emily was right. Total player.

From:
[email protected]
To:
[email protected]
Sent:
Wednesday, February 16, 6:15 p.m.
Subject:
Re: inspiration

don’t you have work you should be doing

for a particular producer?

ok, let’s see…

conversation filler for a continued recess.

since I’ve already given you some basics,

just moments ago.

time for something obscure.

I’m a huge Gene Kelly fan. (Obscure enough?)

For the first 16 years of life, I was quite positive I was going to be the next Gene Kelly, Ben Vereen, Gregory Hines, Sammy Davis or Bo Jangles. As a kid I wanted posters of all these tap dancers to line my bedroom wall… a bit geeky I know.

do I still tap?

ummmm…

I own tap shoes?

Chas

I called Emily directly after pushing “send.” After all, she knew I was crushing on him. She’d be my ally. I couldn’t tell any of my other friends. I knew they would judge, pry, poke and pick at the details. I didn’t have to explain to Emily. She saw Anthony’s smiles, and my blushing, grinning replies. “Heaven help you,” she’d taunt. Sure, she could be brash and judgmental, but she believed in fairytale love. She was in love — a minister’s daughter with a Jewish boyfriend. She believed love was a Woody Allen movie ending with a perfect kiss. She trusted wholly in love, said, “You’d be a FOOL to believe otherwise.”

Besides, she was nosy and wanted to share in my work scandal.

“I waited for you to get back to your office, but you were in his edit bay FOREVER. Sooo, what happened?”

I described the clumsy handshake and his smile. Of course I dished the details of the conversations, his e-mail, and my response. We recapped the embarrassing copy machine incident, mocking our fear when Anthony turned to us. We burst out laughing.

“Okay, I’m home now. See you tomorrow.”

As I hung up the phone I entered my apartment and was greeted by Gladys, quite possibly the ugliest dog in the world. “Hello, beautiful,” I told her. She danced around, tapping her feet on the tiled kitchen floor, snorting and barking with excitement, when I heard a familiar voice behind me.

“I thought that was you.” He kissed me with the same quick peck as he had done for the past five years, and once again my boyfriend asked me how my day was. I began to tell him as he went back to his computer and returned to his work. I’m not sure he ever really heard how my day was, but every night he asked. And every night I gave the bland, edited version of my day as he focused on his computer screen.

I’m not going to use his name in this story. I’ll call him
Five Year
, which might seem heartless, but looking back, the relationship seems like such a long time ago that really, his name doesn’t matter. In the scheme of things, that relationship is about the time I had invested in it, and not who I was dating. Anyway, I had a boyfriend, and a routine. A five-year routine I had grown comfortable and content with. A routine I labeled love. Maybe it wasn’t fairytale love like Emily’s; maybe we weren’t riding off in the sunset bareback on a horse — but it was called love.

“What do you want for dinner?” I asked.
Whatever
, I silently mouthed his response as I stood at the fridge, hoping an answer would present itself. “How about breakfast for dinner?” I hollered across the apartment.

“Breakfast for dinner? You know I never like that. Let’s just order Thai food.”

And with that, another night of routine passed. Another night of work reports, computer screens, nighttime television dramas and halfhearted conversations. Some nights included slamming doors, yelling petty reasons why our relationship was flawed, or arguing compromises. The fights broke up the monotony.

From:
[email protected]
To:
[email protected]
Sent:
Thursday, February 17, 12:53 p.m.
Subject:
inspiration information

quite the colorful tapestry you are…

i suppose there is a day

when we have to take our posters down,

but it makes me wonder about yours…

what happened when you were 16?

that you stopped tapping.

…and when the heck

will i get to see you dance???

i played piano.

i’m trying not to make it sound trite

(most everyone took lessons as a child, right?)

but i played from first grade

until sometime around seventh grade

(see also: sometime around girls)

and although it was classical training,

it was always very solitary, very personal,

and a place to learn music, rhythm,

and most of all expression —

so

we’ll hit the road:

i’ll play piano,

you tap.

we’ll rock the club circuit

and show the world something

they ain’t never seen…

or maybe i’ll just sit in my edit bay

and finish this damn bette and joan project

a.

p.s. please feel free to stop by anytime

"Inspiration Information"
Shuggie Otis

BOOK: even if i am.
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