there’s a line in ‘lost in translation’ that really sticks with me. it’s when bill murray and scarlett johanssen are in the restaurant and fighting. he says, “what, there wasn’t anyone around to pay constant attention to you?”
maybe everyone is like that, but when i heard that both the first and second times i thought, _”oh, that is so totally me.”_ i require constant attention. i sort of try to spread my demands around and not suck any one person dry, but hell i _know_ that’s half the reason i keep a blog. (that and the sheer pleasure of constantly writing. and my ongoing desire to document everything.)
so i was feeling all fucked up and wrong this evening, and thinking about why, and i think the fact that i isolated myself more than usual today had something to do with it. “ok, well that’s lonliness, lisa”, you might be thinking, and you would not be completely wrong, but it’s not like i’m just dying to hear about your day, right? i want you to hear about mine.
i want to stop joe in the street and tell him about the dude stalking me in his car. (which i did.) i want to sit in charles’ office and tell him everything i can think of about the fucking van. i want to sit in joe’s office and tell _him_ everything i can think of about the van or something like it. i want to IM to jason how fucked up sharepoint is and get his sympathy. i want people to write comments on my blog.
it’s a bad and selfish habit, one which i’ve had since i can remember (it was first pointed out to me by my mother when i was in elementary school).
i used to have much better skills at getting people to talk to me about all kinds of personal stuff, but that was actually a manipulative tactic on my part. i mostly used it on guys. seriously, if you can get a guy in his early 20’s to confess some deep, dark secret to you, he’s going to want to make out with you about five minutes later. i think that was my ultimate goal. the ultimate kind of attention. the kind of attention i wanted constantly.
i’m more mature now. less needy. very independent. i realize i’ll never get the attention that i want from the one guy who i really want it from. it doesn’t stop me from fantasizing about what his reaction would be if i could do the things he can do, like program computers, or fix cars. how he’d be proud of me. how we’d hang out and talk recursion or make dumb geeky jokes about gearing. shit we’re never gonna do. the approval he’s never going to give me.
once i made him a web page, for father’s day. he emailed me back a critique.
anyway, whenever i try to jettison this attention-seeking habit, i find i have nothing to replace it with. i’m at a total loss as to what to do instead. the stuff builds up in my head and i desperately need to tell someone about it.
maybe everyone else is so self-absorbed that they don’t notice.