what does it take to be lonesome?


when i was 15, i saw rilo kiley perform for the first time. i heard jenny lewis sing out from the First Avenue stage that "with every broken heart, we should become more adventurous."

broken hearts come in all shapes and sizes, caused by problems substantial, inconsequential, and existential. broken hearts result in lots of things - getting tattoos, going blond, accepting job offers, moving to new cities, buying plane tickets, one more glass of wine.


at 23, i moved into my own place. a tiny, perfect studio in the heart of my favorite city. the move received praise from some and criticism from others. there were college friends saying they could never do what i did; there were friends jealous of my newfound freedom.

when i was little, i hated sleepovers, hated playing at friends' houses. i had such terrible separation anxiety. i just knew something bad would happen if i wasn't at home. i would be lying if i said i didn't have the same fear when i signed that first lease.

bad things did happen, of course. boyfriends. bad jobs. the passing of loved ones. so it goes.

and so i went, moving almost 2,000 miles away from familiarity. and i found out that i'm good at being apart. for the most part. 


at 24, i moved from Minneapolis to San Francisco. i left behind all of my family, all of my friends, and a dense network of professional and artistic opportunities. it was the scariest thing i've ever done (and one time i got a piercing at a shop in the basement of a Chinese restaurant, so i really mean that).

after moving, it hit me that i knew no one in California, let alone SF. i had acquaintances that popped up or friends from way back in high school who had also relocated. but i didn't have a support system in this new city.

i didn't have one, so i had to make one. never the type to fear sitting by myself at a table, this seemed like an easy task.

portrait of the artist as a hip, successful, grown-up lady person comfortable in their own skin. j/k, that is Carrie from SATC. but we both have curly hair. so.

portrait of the artist as a hip, successful, grown-up lady person comfortable in their own skin. j/k, that is Carrie from SATC. but we both have curly hair. so.

brunch. movies. museums. bars. dinners. in the last few years, i've embraced my inner Carrie, in SF and beyond. i've travelled to Seattle, to Portland, to Atlanta, to New York. only when venturing out into the big apple with nothing but a map and a vague plan, standing in front of 30 Rock surrounded by the unknown did i realize - i've gotten good at exploring on my own.

it also helped me to realize that i'm tired of it.

not so much of being alone, but feeling lonely. i kept turning to make observations to someone who wasn't there. 


it takes effort to meet people, to not meet people, to go out and be outgoing. to swipe right or left on potential friends or lovers. it's so much easier to stay in and watch all the Netflix and then watch it all again. to never leave the couch and order in all meals.

sometimes that's all i want to do.

but that's boring. that's bad. 

that takes no effort. takes no work. it takes nothing at all, being lonely. really, loneliness takes from you - so much conversation, so many silly facts and inside jokes, all the awkward pauses. you know, the cool stuff you see on all your favorite tv shows. 


now i'm 28 and i'm looking for those broken hearts. i want the good stuff, the fun stuff, the stuff that makes you feel stuff. i want stories. the kind you read about, the kind you watch. we all know Leo Tolstoy said, "all great literature is one of two stories; a man goes on a journey or a stranger comes to town.” (and as Notorious B.I.G. said, "if you don't know, now you know.")

and so right now, i can rest and see which story is coming next. waste no effort and just hope something good comes my way. or i can act, and create my own story. either way, i'm protagonist, but one certainly sounds more adventurous. 

practically magic.

"i don't believe in any of it, but i do believe in all of it."

-Jack White


whenever i am bummed with life, i call my best friend. as one does. and she doles out the infinite wisdom that only a best friend can provide - knowing just the right words and time and cadence that i need to hear.

once, i called her upset with dating and men (boys) and said that i was done. i was joining a convent.

but like, a cool convent that would respect that i didn't really subscribe to the entirety of their beliefs. one that would allow me to sit and read my books in peace. one that would let me wear my dark lipstick and listen to moody music.

i told her that i liked the idea of wearing only black.

and she told me. she said, "lindsay, that isn't a convent, that's a coven."


the day my grandpa died, the clouds were grey and nondescript and shapeless. but the sun poked through. slowly and patchily. small rays burning through the void in a pattern that wasn't really a pattern; small transporter beams ready to dematerialize at will.


my first love was a musician and a writer. he was funny and cool and didn't yet realize how attractive he was to other people. i fell hard and i fell fast.

he was a Taurus and i a Scorpio. more than that, our birthdays fell exactly six months apart - precisely opposite one another on the Zodiac spectrum. i read somewhere in a book that a love like ours was meant to last forever or burn out in a brilliant spark that shook the earth.

some days, i still feel the tremors.


instead of going to church on Sunday mornings, my dad and i would walk through the paths of a nearby nature preserve. "why stay inside and talk about god when you can walk around and celebrate everything he's made for you?"


when i was little, my religious grandparents would take me on day-trips to Manitou Springs. my favorite place was a tiny little shop run by long-haired women that smelled like spice and earth. the shelves were lined with cards and geodes and old books. the music was soft and soothing.

each trip, i begged and pleaded for a pretty card deck of my own - where every card was unique and full of pretty swirls of color, suits i'd never known. eventually my grandma conceded.

it's an old myth that your first Tarot deck must be given as a gift, a myth i'm certain my Catholic grandma did not know.

or maybe she did.


San Francisco, sometimes I just can’t. So I don’t. Here is a list of things I like to think about instead of whatever your app does or however you went about breaking that app:

  • art supplies i want
  • top hunks
  • favorite words
  • complementary colors
  • all of the beer
  • puns based on my friends’ names
  • what would my roller girl name be?
  • puppies!
  • what if unicorns were real.
  • types of cheese
  • what i need at Walgreens
  • who could i beat in an arm-wrestling match?
  • best sandwiches
  • try to remember origami
  • names of football players and their position + teams
  • travel destinations
  • sign language
  • star wars trivia
  • bloody mary ingredients
  • imagine dragons – not the band – but just, imagine those majestic and noble beasts
  • dream apartment/house
  • whisk(e)y pairings
  • should i get bangs?
  • no. no i shouldn’t.
  • baseball players and their butts