21 December 2007

The Responsibility of Being Fabulous

Alright, alright already! Here's a blog. Sheesh! Never a moment's rest for the Infamous!
Actually, I do appreciate the messages some of you have sent me over the last couple of weeks clamoring for your dose of The Misadventures... you junkies.
You make a girl feel loved!
Bah, humbug!
Here you go:

It's a natural thing, as a human being, to want to be remembered, to be something more than dust and bones after we complete this part of the cycle.
It drives civilization.
Wars have been fought, great monuments erected, entire peoples enslaved, religions created, all in the name of "legacy". Even reproduction to some extent--- the desire to have children, sons, to carry on the family name--- is on some level driven by it.
I don't mean to imply it is the sole drive behind any of these things, but it certainly comes into play.

About a month ago I was speaking to a new acquaintance who is somewhat obsessed with the idea of leaving something behind by which to be remembered. "Legacy" has become his life's purpose---some great work, a film, a book, with which to make and leave his mark upon the world. The conversation kept coming back to the idea that it had to be something grand.

I can understand it. I can understand wanting to have an impact, to "matter".
I, myself, have adopted one of the most self-indulgent mediums. The blogging phenomenon is fueled by the very notion that somebody, anybody will care enough about my experiences, my opinions, to take time out of their day to read about them; the idea that I somehow "matter" to perfect strangers.

Where he and I differed, however, was the notion that it had to be something on a grand scale, and something tangible. Even stronger than the desire to leave something behind, was his desire to know that he has affected the life of one, or preferably, many.
I argued that it is often the smallest gestures which have the greatest impact. A passing comment or off-handed gesture can change the course of somebody's life. The best part is, one may never even be aware of having done so.

I don't think he was convinced.

After that discussion, we had exactly one date.
He's the tall broody one, with the tragic past. Yeah, that guy...you know the one. He's intriguing and quiet and deep and truh-ble. Therefore...irresistible.
At first.

It was a new moon and a funny thing happens to me on the new moon.
The new moon is a time of magic and sorcery, if you believe in those things.
Believe what you will, the new moon makes me uncannily receptive, perceptive--- more so than usual.
Throw Tall, Dark and Broody in the mix, and I felt like I needed a mute button to shut out his thoughts. On more than one occasion I replied to a comment or question he had not actually spoken aloud.
I made passing reference to things of he would rather not have spoken, but which I heard as though he had screamed them. It unsettled him, but it also brought on that look. That look of relief, of having somebody understand his pain without him needing to speak it. That look of hope at finding a kindred spirit.

Uh-oh. Too much impact. Time to diffuse the situation..

And I tried.

I took us from intimate conversation to a bar-hop the likes of which I haven't indulged since I was a bouncy 22 year old bar-fly. I took us to places where we'd run into my friends, and rounded up company along the way. I downed gin like water to dull my abilities to pull thoughts out of his head.

A few days later, I received an email the length of a small novella, proclaiming his feelings.
I told my tale of woe to The Wifey.

"Why are you still surprised when guys fall for you after one date? You're Juli" she said by way of explanation, as she rolled her eyes and shook her head.

"I don't know any other way to be..." I pleaded. I meet people and I'm just me. I'm straightforward, I'm not trying to impress anyone. I am always surprised to learn that I have made such a strong impression, especially in such a brief amount of time.

I forget the responsibility that comes with being fabulous.

That acquaintance remains just that and nothing more, but the theme has continued to appear in my life over the last month. I have been reminded many times of the importance of those little gestures, little comments and the impact they can have.
It seems particularly relevant during a season when many of us buy into the thought that the impact of the gesture is directly proportional to the size of the price tag attached to it.

Me? I'm just trying to learn to bear the burden of my responsibilities.

All Content Copyright 2007, Juliana Tobón. All Rights Reserved


  1. Serena Markstrom

    haha. Yes, be aware of your powers. Just so long as you dont intentionally dim for anyone.

    Posted by Serena's twitter.com/rgticket on December 21, 2007 - Friday - 1:01 PM

    sat hari

    first, happy solstice!

    you know, we have a lot in common when it comes to hearing thoughts. its one of those gifts that sometimes feels like a curse. it does make people fall in love with you. but i've noticed that it is more often those that are searching for something and nearing a precipice that are the ones who chose to fall for you instead of taking that daring leap into the oblivion that is the search for the true authentic Self.

    i never know how to really react to this either. i do my best to distance myself emotionally and at the same time be totally present with compassion and acceptance, but sometime you get cases where even that makes it worse! so i always eventually resort to being a good example and acting with them the way i want them to act with me. (you can also imagine offering them a plate of radishes. scott cunningham says this is supposed to deflect unwanted suitors).

    its true. you are juli. the amazing fabulous juli. but more than that, you are one of those rare beings that carries a light within you, that shines and inspires. sometimes it intimidates, but more often it awes. people cant help it because you are one of those rare beings that proves that it is possible to live life fearlessly even if you are fearful sometimes. you also prove that it is possible to believe in and utilize all that is abundantly placed graciously at your feet by the divine. you never seem to miss the etheric gifts that most pass over in disbelief.

    keep glowing. keep reading. keep your patience:) because, you never know when just being you in your authentic Self will inspire someone to overcome the fear of being in their own.

    sending you love and big back cracking hugs from the holy land.
    sat hari

    Posted by sat hari on December 21, 2007 - Friday - 1:04 PM

    Infamous CoatCheck Girl™

    Damn it lady, you made me teary-eyed! I miss you and your big back-cracking hugs.
    Thank you for your amazingly kind words.


    Posted by Infamous CoatCheck Girl™ on December 21, 2007 - Friday - 1:21 PM

    My name is Allen

    wow. so much ground covered in a single blog.
    i've always found it interesting how people (myself included) feel the need to _own_ your fabulousness. once experienced, they can't bear the thought of losing it, or worse yet, of someone else being as privy to it as they are. the fear kicks in and they get graspy and weird. it's uncomfortable. you can't help but feel sorry for them and you want to avoid it in the future, but now that's your own fear kicking in. no one wants to cause suffering, especially by being fabulous! ironic, no? but even the bible, the most rudimentary of transformational texts, advises us not to hide our light under a bushel.
    which brings us to the question of responsibility. if we alter our fabulousness to avoid causing attachment and hence pain, we're taking responsibility for the other's reaction and his/her traveling his/her own path. by the same token we relinquish our own responsibility to channel fabulousness into the world.
    no answer, but my mid-stream summation - be all that you can be. communicate. be compassionate. just like you did. high-fives all around.
    did i just repeat your blog?
    the man in the mountain

    Posted by My name is Allen on December 21, 2007 - Friday - 1:42 PM

    Infamous CoatCheck Girl™

    Very wise indeed, sir. Thank you for your insights.

    Posted by Infamous CoatCheck Girl™ on December 21, 2007 - Friday - 1:51 PM


    Well, you are fabulous, that's no surprise. You are so fabulous that you were the sole individual who made my 2007 one of the best years I've ever had. I never thought one person would bring so much light out of me and really help me flourish without even lifting a finger! That is why I got so sad to hear you weren't spending New Year's with us because if there is anybody I would want to cherish that night with, it would be you. My 2007 was ground breaking and full of new experiences all in part by the massive impact you had on me and that my dearest, is priceless. I love you and I thank you for subconsciously guiding me out of my shell in '07...so what are we going to do about '08 ;)
    To think it all started with you buying me peppermint tea ;)

    Posted by Christine on December 21, 2007 - Friday - 5:21 PM

    Infamous CoatCheck Girl™

    Peppermint tea...who could have imagined that such a humble beverage would have such far-reaching repercussions?
    I'm going to miss you on NYE too, but as soon as I get back you and I are definitely going out to grab a cup of tea.
    I love you!

    Posted by Infamous CoatCheck Girl™ on December 21, 2007 - Friday - 6:20 PM

    wow... I was reading these replies, and figured out something that's been eating at me for awhile now. that I am just crazy about you. you are my perfect trophy wife ☺ it just makes so much sense… cause you really do have your very own universe to tend to. which means I'd always have plenty of time to do the things I gotta do. you're well-bred and cultured, and beautiful to look at. and I am of course, the Man. we could be like the Clintons, living on different coasts.

    ha ha ha… but seriously, this has been a revelation for me. you've set the bar pretty high, the women I meet here in the City have to be all the things I mentioned above before I even start thinking about being a boyfriend. fortunately, many of them are ;) but I just thought it was crazy that you said I'm too idealistic when it comes to women. I've been with some pretty special women in my time, and yes, you are one that I am most proud to know. so now I feel resolved in that area, I feel more at ease with this strange pull you have on me… I see it's just something that you do. I'm like a fan. well this is wonderful, now I can move on with my life. but I still want to have you take some pictures for my campaign, because you are one of the best.

    Posted by on December 21, 2007 - Friday - 6:22 PM

    Infamous CoatCheck Girl™

    Thanks for the, uh, weird compliment...you big freak...You and your weird trophy-wife obsession...
    Freak or no, you know I'm still fond of you. Kiss.

    Posted by Infamous CoatCheck Girl™ on December 21, 2007 - Friday - 6:42 PM

    Kenji Mizumori

    Tis' true, you are infamous. And you wear it well. Cheers!

    Posted by [ninjaphoto] on December 22, 2007 - Saturday - 2:01 AM

    Evan Halbert

    People are often attracted to the strength and power of somewhere who's not afraid of or ashamed to be themselves. It's rare and very alluring. All you can do is be you; in fact I think it's each person's duty.

    Gifts are nice. Leaving something lasting is nice, too. But, the most important thing is to be who you are, and love. I don't have money this year, but I know that my hugs mean more than any present ever could, even if other people don't see that.

    When you do find someone that is powerful, it's hard not to grab hold for dear life. And, that's too much for you right now. You're not ready for a Stu yet. Until then, you'll have to deal with the earnest attempts and enjoy all the Steves.

    Posted by Evan on December 22, 2007 - Saturday - 4:03 AM

    Infamous CoatCheck Girl™

    Insightful and cryptic as ever, love.
    Stu and Steve? Am I missing something?

    Posted by Infamous CoatCheck Girl™ on December 22, 2007 - Saturday - 4:06 AM


    Well re-counted lady. I have travelled a circuitous route to find this wonderful piece of writing which has taken many weeks. I am glad I have arrived at last and look forward to the next instalment.

    Posted by . on December 25, 2007 - Tuesday - 3:06 PM


    It's funny, how those people who want to make their special mark on the world also want to make that special mark on their favorite women too. Like that same drive to have ones society mark their work as a prize, so also do they want their crush to drop everything and devote him/her self to them. A chronic plauge of the tragic romantic, to demand all of the others love or throw thems selves on their sword. Funny too, how you can watch it unfold. Many patterns of human behavior become so predictable. It can be very empowering, even when you are thrust in to an uncomfortable role, to shine the light of truth in to those tragic delusions. Seize the reigns, not the bottle. Shine on. Their is nothing to be shy about. I hope you keep blowing peoples doors off for many dark moons to come. In a land of plastic woman with shallow ways, I have seen that, time and time again, the fabulous are all the rage......Rock on.

    Posted by x on January 8, 2008 - Tuesday - 1:32 AM

  2. Ok, so after you mentioned this post during our hangout, I had to come to the ICG kingdom and read it.
    It's true Juli... After our day, I felt nourished. You emanate light and love, and although some fools might not think you're humble (because they don't know jack sh*t about you) you ARE.
    You're complex, yet simple. You are reserved and yet open and giving: genuine love. You have no problems being you, and as someone that shares that philosophy - because hey, I am dimmed as the "insane person" ("insanely happy" - I like to think) - I feel blessed for having met you. Your "fabulous curse" is a gift to us all: the seekers, the poets, the lost drifters...
    I hope to correspond that gift of kindness and friendship with as much love as you do.
    Paz pra ti, querida! Beijos da Brasileira. :)

    PS: and please, can you write some more? You take tooooo long between posts. hahaha (so demanding!)


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