I can’t remember which one, but in one childhood movie, a character used The Bible as a sort of fate guessing game. Point your finger, open a page and press down hard on the words of your future. The only way God will tell you if that boy is going to breakup with you on Saturday when he meets Rachel is through random Bible trivia. I think it was that movie where the girl stuffs her bra with ziplock pudding packs. It’s the same girl that’s in Hocus Pocus. Why can I never remember the name.
I’m sorry to say (is this a moment when you use one of those #smh) that I believed this was how God spoke to people back in the day. Bible scavenger hunts and what not. Most of my boyfriends either got dumped by Bible dosages, or I decided whether or not to lie to my parents about something minor. Now obviously, I’m much more grown up and sophisticated (maybe not, #smh), and I have new ways of dealing with stress. Flipping quarters. No just kidding. I have a book, a book for all things, all times, all feelings. 1000 Feelings For Which There Are No Names is a book from the lovely people at Penguin who send expansive emails with lots of verbiage. They are book people after all, and they tote a small penguin around with them in their purse so we have to give them a break.
1000 Feelings For Which There Are No Names is a beautiful book. French flaps (I learned this word from Audra @ Unabridged Chick), strangely unique illustrations (like looking at a Tumblr typography page), and a translator. You know it’s going to be interesting when one day you’re able to use that language and the original meant tongue instead of lip and all of a sudden that kiss is much more sloppy than romantic. A girl can dream.
Not only are the illustrations “ballin'” but the book is so much fun to scavenger hunt. Having a rough day, close your eyes and crystal ball the hell out of #623. The fear that the medications won’t work. Or maybe you’re “rough day” amounts to #666. The desperation when everyone tells you you’ve got to “finally let go” — and you can’t. If you’ve never had a crying fit in your car over #666, then you probably haven’t lived through a teenage girl. Or finally, for all the colleagues out there with desks to close to sneezing, sputtering, yammering, coughing, talking to loud to their ex-boyfriend, gum chewing, hair curling, professionals out there, this one goes out to you. #802. The disappointment that other people get by just fine with advice and assistance. OH, YOU DON’T WANT TO TRY MINTS INSTEAD OF GUM, YOU ENDLESS POPPING CACOPHONY.
Anyway, there are unexplainable feelings for every moment of your life in this book, just about. I’m sure we could come up with a few of our own if we had a book club, and a few restless wives just lying around. (Ba dum cha). Here are a few of my favorites with brief explanations:
- #390. The envy of other people’s hickeys.
Explanation: How much change did you find in that dirty couch when you didn’t know where to put your hands. I’m looking at you, freshman, front row, hiding that red blotch behind a JROTC uniform.
- #107. The anxiety that maybe you’re not a real man because you’ve never been to a brothel.
Explanation: Is there where women ladle out soup from large cauldrons wearing nothing but their skivvies. Let’s stick to that.
- #100. The felicity of the first touch.
Explanation: I have an American Girl Doll with that name. She lives in the attic.
- #863. The indignation at being called vain.
Explanation: Oh, you mean, those seventeen selfies I just took because I couldn’t get one good one for #selfiesunday. We see you, instagrammers.
- #676. The urge to swerve into the guardrail.
Explanation: Normally this would be called depression, but I have this strange lingering feeling, just a nagging little itch, that everyone has looked at that metal bandaid on the high way and wondered at what speed they could shift it’s surface without killing themselves, sometimes on those rough days (623) how fast you’d have to go to plough through.
- #485. The happiness of lounging on the sofa together.
Explanation: If by lounging on the sofa you mean in the guest bedroom because my boyfriend is allergic to cats and watching the entire first and second season of American Horror Story in one day so that your eyes are so bloodshot they refuse to close because they have reached that level of openness that now it is about survival.
- #199. The certain serenity while gazing out a train window.
This feeling simultaneously makes me feel both alone and together with the entire world. It might be the way you don’t move for the entire train ride, but stay stock still with your knees together as a school girl, or it might be the blurred grass that the human eye can’t make out by blade or bush, but this feeling is one of my very favorites. I can’t read on a train because I get car sick, my eyes trying to peripheral the view of the window while at the same time scanning the page. Just not a good thing, so window it is, almost always. The same thing can be felt in a plane, but that’s more of a “you’re just a speck in the vastness of the universe” than an actual fully together, ripped apart feeling.
- #18. The dread of ice breaker games.
I think I feared this more than my camp children when we would play these in the large field. I was a star swimmer in high school and yet the mounting fear was always, will I be picked last?
READ THIS BOOK. EAT THIS BOOK. FEEL THESE FEELS.
*With this outpouring of feelings, I have suddenly remembered (by googling pudding packs in bra movie) and the movie that I loved, oh so, is “Now and Then.”