Thursday, December 30, 2010

Compromising My Values

Alice doesn't buy Nike products.
Nike employs children in its sweatshops.

Alice's feet are bonked.
She has barely an arch at all.

When Alice runs in running shoes, she feels okay.
When Alice runs more than a few miles, her feet get torn up.

Alice is training for a half or full marathon. TBD.
Alice's feet in usual shoes are not so happy.

Alice found a pair of shoes that will not give her grief!
...They are made by Nike.


Turkey Trot, Photo by Pookie, 2010

Today I may compromise my values. Rats.

I wanna fit in to the perfect space,
feel natural and safe in a volatile place.
And I wanna grow old without the pain,
give my body back to the earth and not complain.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Review on the Year & Goals

Usually I try to make this blog universal, inviting, generally not just about the day-to-day of my own life, but this entry is going to be a selfish.

2010 is almost over, and I would like to reflect on it. This year has been very very full.
I gots to sems at ACTF (and had a great trip), directed a wonderful season of LZ, was in Bradley's one-act, had my sister move closer, roomed with Muff, Yatchface, Grinz, wrote a play, performed a play, was in Robin Hood with Stripes, had a ridiculous amount of birthday celebration, graduated college, spent the best summer yet working at camp, had difficulties with my living situation, with my car, with my jobs, went through two break-ups, performed a lovely wedding, and found an improv company I really enjoy. Had a great old friend visit--that's happening right now.


Slou--here now :)

I had two resolutions last year, which I took on admirably, and I will continue to take on in this upcoming year:
-Don't drink as much coffee. I did very well, but I could do better.
-Don't talk about race or age unless it is super significant to the conversation. Also, I did well, but really just want this as a habit.

Last summer I made five goals for the upcoming school/work year (until June 2011) and I'm making good progress.
-Visit aunt and grandfather in Wisconsin: Check
-Pray everyday: Getting there
-Run a 10K: Planning on running more this spring
-Get Published in some CS Literature: Submitted
-Go to Germany: Planning

Thanks for listening to my goals. You're a million percent more likely to get what you want and behave how you want if you tell other people and stay honest about it.

Put your mind to it, go for it, you're gunna break a sweat.

Monday, December 27, 2010

I Love You

When I was thirteen my friend Smidge and I were supposed to prepare for a debate against two other boys in Language Arts class. They were talkin' smack. The topic was Banning Books in Libraries Yes or No? We said No. The two rascally boys said Yes. They were explaining how they were going to tear us apart in the debate (spoiler: they did not) and one of them said something like "Don't you hate us?" so I of course said No. I said, "I don't hate anyone."

The one with a stupid bowl-cut asked, "Why not?" A stupid question. I said, "I love everyone." I was really lame, but it's just what came out. And, it was/ is the truth. So he and his friend gawked. EVERYONE? EVERYONE?
I was already exposed. I nodded. "Well, then, you love us?" They egged me on. I was in deep. I nodded yes. I tried to look confident.

"Say it then," they jeered. I wanted the conversation to be over and to continue our discussion on inappropriate kids books. I looked one of them in the eye and said, "I love you." He looked horrified--absolutely ready to vomit. I understand and don't understand. The other laughed and laughed. I asked to talk more about the assignment. The laughing bowl-cut kid told as many people as would listen. "She said I love you! She said it to ----!" I was so embarrassed.

I understand and don't understand.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Wowzers

Things move so fast. So fast. So fast. You really gotta keep focused and know what's going on. Because remember when THIS was my life?



My desk. Summer 2010.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Take Your Marks

Last night there was a mini-squabble. I wanted to wake up today and work out, Pookie got frustrated: "Can't you just take one day off?" But, it's not like exercise is a punishment I place on myself. It is deeply cleansing and rewarding, and that's why I want to do it every day. Of all days in the year, I should give myself the joy of a strength training workout on Christmas morning.

I wish I had been introduced to exercise earlier in my life. I remember a friend whose mom made her run a mile every day over summer vacation in 7th grade. At the time, I pictured the mom with fangs because it sounded so evil. But now...I should be so lucky.

Incidentally...I am on the edge of signing up for a marathon...

:/

Nac: wrightsville beach marathon/your visit is in 93 days, 1 hour, and 9 minutes
Nac: GET YOUR RUNNING SHOES ON
Nac: WE'RE RUNNING FROM MY HOUSE TO THE RACE
Me: What! No!
Nac: WE'RE GOING HARDCORE
Nac: MAKE THE NEWS
Nac: CRAZY FRIENDS RUN 10 MARATHONS ON THE WAY TO A MARATHON
Nac: headliner

Merry Christmas, y'all!

Just do your best. It's the only way to keep that last bit of sanity.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Poppin' Bottles in the Club


August 2009, Photo by Pookie, at Dunkin'
I MISS MY LONG HAIR.


Last night, en route to IO downtown, my sister and I saw a Dunkin' Donuts. We both sighed with relief. There is genuinely something relieving about DD to me (and her). I don't love Chicago. I really don't. I appreciate it. I'll rep it and its 1990s Bulls and improv scene and Wilco and Marshall Fields until the day I die, but...I don't love it. It's cold and dirty.

BUT I LOVE DUNKIN' DONUTS. It's like this magical point on the spectrum of childhood memories that doesn't cross with angsty adolescence, delicious tastes of sweet and savory that never turns too rich or too filling, a chain that has been part of my life forever and always unlike my old skating rink or Brown's chicken which disappeared in the romanticism of elementary school.

So, we sighed. Good. Dunkin' Donuts on every street corner. Good. That's how we like it. She said, "We'll stop."
"There's one by dad's house."
"What? I'll need some munchkins for the road! To pop in my mouth!"
Silence. Quietly, to herself, barely audible I hear

"...Poppin' munchkins in the club..."


Picture this adorable little facey in da club with a carton of chocolate munchkins...

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Cell Treasures of the Sierra Madre

My cell contract is up! New phone time! I always liked my phone, but now after researching other phones for hours...I HATE MY STUPID PHONE! My fam went to the store today to trade in, and there was flip-flopping and hemming and hawing, and it was decided we could go back tomorrow, BUT I SWEAR TO GOD I AM A TODDLER AND CANNOT WAIT ONE. MORE. MINUTE.

Isn't that weird how that works? You're like happy and content and then you see all the glory of something newly within your grasp and you're just swimming in desire!

T9? We don't need no stinking T9! Not with a full keyboard!


I had to take all my old photos off my phone, since it will soon be replaced. This is the selection of gummy candies from a candy shop in Wisconsin.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

First Time


Pre-Wedded, Jamba & Muff

Last night was my first time performing with a longform team.

A train crashed
and everything slows down.
I was wishing I could get out of this town.
These dreams we've had
have never made you cry.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Ew 2011

Maybe it's just a tad OCD, but I really don't like odd years besides the 5's. Like, I really enjoyed graduating in 2010. That sounds really nice. 2006 and 2008 were good years too. I liked going to Japan in 2008. That has a ring to it.

But 2009? 2009 was actually a really good year, but it still looked gross. Don't get me started on '07. 2011 looks and sounds ugly. Ick. Can't we skip these things?

I was going to get a tattoo in 2010. I almost did in '07 but honestly didn't want that to be the year I got. Now, I will have to wait until 2012. I have a design and place, but I am only 99% sure about it. So, I guess even if there's a breath of hesitation you don't do it, right? Maybe not. I think of Dusty, who was taking out the garbage after our cast party with me two nights ago. It was 1 AM. We thought the dumpster was out back, but a sign said an emergency alarm would sound. We stood still, then he said with conviction, "You know what? Improv. Make a choice and commit to it." He pushed on the door and sirens blared.


Dusty and Peanut Brittle in a scene last weekend

When I saw Equus a few months ago a woman in the production was playing the stern child counselor and friend of the doctor. It's a serious role. I couldn't help notice the tiny script of "Laugh!" tatted on her ankle. Hm.

You know when the truth gets told you can get what you want or you can just get old.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Super Deep Y'all

Crush the snow.
Change the boots.
Gym shoes tied.
Treadmill time.
Soy dog digesting. Bites bites bites.
Side pains.
Run.
Side Pains.
Run.
Give up.
Walk.
Nurse the cramp.
Fail at a goal.
Not all goals are worth achieving.

Home Again


It's late. It's really late. I can't sleep. It's happy insomnia!

I remember this from the night before high school began. I laid in bed, all lights off, with headphones connected to my Discmac. I listened to the album Bleed American by Jimmy Eat World. I loved that album. Who am I fooling? It's probably still on my top five. DON'T JUDGE!

I feel at home right now. Not just because I have gotten ultra cozy crashing on Pookie's couch since I have been on break from working, but because a gear has been shifted. A switch has been turned. I couldn't tell you exactly when it happened. Who cares?

College was not appealing to me. I didn't feel the urge to escape my surroundings (I had only been at my high school two years). I didn't crave independence. I had plenty with my busy schedule and separated parents. I mean, I was a good kid and wouldn't need to "get away" for any reason. I would like...do crack on school nights with my friend Bubba. Now replace "crack" with "Calculus," "Bubba" with "Nals" (the sweet and timid Indian boy in my class), and "school nights" with "weekends." So, I was sort of non-jazzed about wild nights and staying up late and ditching work. I wanted to get my education and read and put in my retainers and sleep. For some reason the instinct to make friends did not kick in for me until a couple weeks of college had already been underway. I don't think this is sad in any way. I honestly didn't think about making friends. Keep in mind I had just spent a month in a solitary room in Edinburgh. So that.

Anyway, one day I didn't have too much homework to do, and my roommate was out, and I started thinking, "I kinda just want to hang out with someone." So I left my room and walked to the commons to find a random group of people watching Fight Club. I love Fight Club, so I invited myself to the couch and watched along. I liked the people. It was a group of friends I wasn't part of, but I felt comfortable around them. They seemed to like me okay. Little did I know I would go to Japan with two of them, and Ben Folds concert with another before graduation.

GOSH THIS IS GETTING LONG. That night my very dear friend Henne just happened to call me. We chatted, and I said, "I feel at home in my dorm. I feel like I belong here, and I am part of a community and atmosphere..." and he was like "Uh...it took me months to feel that way." And, I was really grateful.

And, I can't explain it, but I feel the same way right now. I feel really happy and comfortable in my own skin. Pleased with my life right now. Grateful I just finished my improv show, made some lovely friends, learned bunches, and feel like the cocoon that has been forming around me is breaking. HEY! YOU SHUT UP ABOUT THE JUVENILLE METAPHOR ITS LIKE FIVE AM!

Tonight was a weird night. You know the improv shortform game "Emotional Roller-coaster"? You do a scene and the host yells out various emotions to change into as the scene progresses? Try hanging out with a group of improvers for thirteen hours. You'll begin to see how that game was inspired.

How can you soar if you're nailed to the floor?

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Someday We'll Find It


Council Overhang, Ottawa, IL 2010

Backstage last night in the mini-break before our late show one of my castmates started singing Rainbow Connection in a gen-u-ine Kermit the Frog voice. Then someone else sang along. Then the light guy walked backstage and joined in. Two more piped up. All in that hideous toad gurgle. A full-on chorus of Kermits flemily singing in a dark winged corridor at 9:57 PM on a Friday.

And no one blinks or anything.

So I say, "How do you know all the lyrics to 'The Rainbow Connection'?" And the original Kermie explains that once he realized he could do that voice, he felt he better darn well get some lines down. I looked to the rest of them. They shrugged.

"Yeah...I don't..."
"It's like..."
"Well, you gotta..."
"HEY! Why DON'T you know 'The Rainbow Connection'?!"
They all leapt onto the mock anger. I gave in! I'm sorry! You're right! What was I thinking?

Then we started talking about what happens when you slow down Louis Armstrong recordings and add heavy metal backbeats.

What's so amazing that keeps us stargazing, and what's on the other side?

Friday, December 17, 2010

Clarally, Clarally, Clarally, Clarally, Life is but a Dream


Me and Homestay Momma--NOT CLARA, but, yes, same size.

Clara: i totally thought about you a lot this month, about how you would handle my life... hahaha
Me: Really?
Clara: i think you're awesome
Me: That is such a compliment.
Clara: it's true! i thought about how you love the things you love and then you make decisions that bring you closer or deeper into those things and that's that!
Me: Thank you!
Clara: i think when you visited, every decision we made was based on that premise, and it made my mind feel so happy and clear instead of the way it normally is
Clara: FUZZY AND CHAOTIC!!!
Me: Wait. I want to live near you.
Me: DON'T MOVE SOMEWHERE COLD.
Clara: we'll see.
Clara: I'm going to visit new mexico too.
me: OKAY GO THERE!
NO SERIOUSLY GO THERE.
I WILL FOLLOW YOU.
I was just looking at living in NM yesterday.
Clara: hahahaha- where??
Me: I was looking at grad school at University of NM.
Clara: YES
Clara: I'm visiting
Me: OMG OMG OMG
Clara: I will send you a report
Clara: But I also might live in St. Paul
Me: NO.
Clara: Because I love snow
Clara: so much
Me: I will bomb St. Paul.
Clara: then i will die in st. paul!
Clara: i will be a martyr for my love
Clara: how long are you going to be in Illinois?
Me: Until June.
Me: I have applied to teach in Japan, but I won't know about that for a long time.
Clara: if you go to japan, i will bomb japan
Clara: oh wait
Clara: :(

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Jesus Christ!


above the head counselor cabin, 2010

"For he that is mighty hath done to me great things, and holy is his name."
-Mary on getting bopped by God. What a trooper.

People get really hung up on the virgin birth thing. Can we just get over it? It's sort of weird and lame, so whatever, let's just drop it. It's not even that important. Jesus was either a good real dude who said helpful things or a good fake dude who said helpful things. People quote Holden Caulfield like he's a saint, and no one is even pretending he was immaculately conceived. I say we move on and enjoy whatever we think the truth is.

Like Mary's story. Gets told about having to be pregnant, and she's like...pumped. Challenges are blessings cheesy cheese blah blah blah, but it's true, and we should remember that. I like the symbolism of shepherds seeing a dim light of a star and just following it until they found the baby party. Life feels like that all the time to me. You get a little hint of something good, and if you follow it and have faith, next thing you know, you are immortalized in manger scenes for all eternity.

Breath of heaven, hold me together, be forever near me.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Tip of the Tongue

In the midst of a discussion about race and America and jobs and other such things, my sister and I both forgot a key phrase.

"You know...when like...they say they want more blacks in a school or a job or...something. Like an advantage?"
"Right right, and its like a big contended thing and...Dear Lord what is that called?"
"Uh...um...Underprivileged Justice?"
"Something Advantage?
"Minority Priority?"

We make up several more, totally unable to grasp the real phrase, so we finished the conversation subbing in Minority Priority.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Nut-Free

The high school I work at is a completely "Nut-Free Facility." When did this happen? When I was a freshman in high school I was in a play of three Edgar Allen Poe stories, and the kid who was the old man from "The Tell Tale Heart" was allergic to peanuts. Our director sat munching a bag of trail mix and offered some to the guy. He said, "No thanks. If I eat that, I'll die." Our director paused, ate another handful, then offered again. We all laughed! HAHA PEANUT ALLERGIES!

Upon having to throw away the tubs of hazelnut cream cheese I brought for the judge's lounge at the school's speech meet, I felt like the world was full of wusses. I mean, really, can't you just not eat a Snickers? Do you have to have them banned wherever you are?

And then this girl had a giant puffy face. And her coaches were moments away from calling 911. And she for real looked like she was gunna die. And she was just in the same room as someone eating peanut butter. Woof.

I am more understanding, but still kind of like, "Uh...what are we doing that todays' teenagers nearly explode at the smell of a peanut?" Put your kids in dirt. Stop hanging out next to factories and DDTing your family garden for macademia's sake.



Other nuts. Spring Formal 2010.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Monday Bath

The knob was turned as left as it could be turned.
I am fundamentally against baths. A waste
of water.
But, it has been a long time.
Besides visiting onsens in Japan
at least.

Last week I began one, but got bored halfway full.
Today was the first real bath I have had in around ten years.
I can't remember the last one.

My heart lubbed s l o w.
I felt like a bullfrog.
Stagnant and sludgey. The water
rose. I was curled up holding my knees,
toes under the stream. Hot.

I closed my eyes and reached back forming a V on the wall.
Hot places: the American south, exotic islands, Australia.
How can you be angry with these heavy eyelids?

Ears buzzing.
I drained it.
Stepping out I looked like I had bathed
in a jar of maraschino cherries.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Conversation with Big Taco

BT: you know, i have to admit to crying during an insurance commercial or something a week ago
Me: HAHA LOSER!!!!
BT: not i mean not like crying crying, but i got one good blob of eye juice from each eye and a sniffle
BT: HEY LADY YOU CRIED AT A CHICKEN SALAD
Me: THE MEAT INDUSTRY CREATES MORE WASTE THAN THE TRANSPORTATION INDUSTRY!
Me: THAT IS SOMETHING TO CRY ABOUT!
BT: THERE WAS A REALLY TRAGIC POINT BEING MADE ABOUT THE FRAGILITY OF LIFE OR THE IRREPLACEABLE WARMTH OF A MOTHER'S LOVE GOING ON IN THIS COMMERCIAL
BT: IT HAD NOTHING TO DO WITH THE INSURANCE
BT: it's like the first ten minutes of the new star trek
Me: Omg
Me: Don't even get me started
BT: it just punched open my rib cage and crabbed me by the heart before i even knew what was happening
Me: HAHAHA YOU SAID IT CRABBED YOU BY THE HEART!
BT: grabbed* rather. although crabbed would be good
Me: BAHAHA! YOUR HEART HAS CRABS!
BT: AT LEAST MY HEART CAN FEEL, YOU MONSTER
Me: Uh....I believe you're the one chomping on other living beings.
BT: oh right, because plants are inanimate, lifeless objects
Me: Kind of.
BT: NOT EVEN A LITTLE

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

And So I Cried at California Pizza Kitchen

Against my own desires I had to go shopping tonight. I needed another collared shirt for my show. I hate shopping. I really do. It's so annoying. But, surprisingly, I can't figure out if I like malls or not. I usually avoid them because I hate shopping. I hate shopping because usually*

A) You need something and you absolutely cannot find it.
B) You don't need something but you have found so many things you want!
1) They look horrible on you. You are depressed.
2) They look awesome...and expensive. You are depressed.

But also malls are clean, smell like cinnabons, and play fun music. So. I like that. But, also people. So...jury's still out.

ANYWAY you don't care what I think of malls. You want to know about the drama I hooked you with in the title. I'm getting there! Okay, so I was at the mall finding a shirt, which I victoriously found. I was also going to treat myself to a movie. I was in the film seeing spirit, and I love to go to movies alone. But, after some phoning I realized my sister was also shopping, and she wanted dinner. And I hadn't eaten! So, she came to the mall I was at, but then she had to buy something, and then we were only going to have a little more than half an hour at dinner. No big. CPK's fast.

YOU THINK I'M GOING TO CRY BECAUSE I MISS THE MOVIE! Well, yeah, I miss the movie, but also...that's not it.

So, I get a salad that looks really really good. Thai peanut something with edamame and crispies. Mmmm, and I ask to substitute the chicken with avocado. Mmmmm and then the food comes. Mmmm but it doesn't look like there are avocados. So I ask the waiter, and he says I thought I wanted chicken and NOT avocados. Okay. Clearly he messed up right? Because how is that possible? Why would I ask him to substitute something in the original dish for something not in it? Right?

So he said he'd bring another and took the salad. But, I know what happens to food waiters take THE GARBAGE THAT'S WHAT! So I started to get really nervous. It's so difficult when that happens. I don't want to eat chicken, but I don't want it to be thrown away, and suddenly all these little starving children were dancing in my brain. Well, they were too weak to dance, crawling more like it. And so. I started to cry.

So instead of me having a panic attack my sister offered to buy both salads and take the chickenful one to a meat-eating friend. The waiter said the wrong salad was on the house. I was relieved. It's was much later because of food conundrums, but whatever. I wish this kind of thing made me lovable. I think it just makes me insane.

*I actually tried to make a flow chart depicting my experiences at malls, but after like five minutes of trying I realized I still couldn't figure out what the "graphic" button was. That was the first step.

Great Things

Five Great Things

1. Man on the Moon--I am now minorly obsessed with Andy Kaufman and his comedy/art/life. This movie has been bumped into my top five of all time.
2. Studio 60. I am so sad I only have like three episodes left.
3. Yesterday Kay and I hang out pretty much all day, and we did almost nothing productive. Caught up on Hulu, had a dance party to the new Girl Talk album, ate things...It was SO relaxing. And no feelings of guilt squashed it either. I was never like, "I need to get X and Y done..." I think it helped that we also didn't spend any money. Not spending money increases my joy level by about sixty percent.
4. My dream was really stressful. I was at today's speech meet, but I had all these random things I had to do pertaining to making a fort out of garbage and recyclables. Plus, some kid got in serious trouble, and I was going to have to reprimand him. But, POOF I woke up! That is so nice.
5. I have convinced my sister to keep a "cookie box"--a box that always has fresh-baked cookies in it.


BONUS THING: BOBBY MOYNIHAN'S BLACK FRIDAY SKETCH FROM ANNE HATHAWAY'S EPISODE IS THE BEST SNL SKETCH OF THE YEAR. Really, the past two shows have been pretty good.


the man

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Sweeties



There are some girls who can live forever with sugar voices. Anything they say is like gingerbread pancakes with whipped cream drizzle. I do not know how these girls function. Do they get into fights? Do they cry more or less as they have fewer reasons for crying? I am interested.

The other day backstage FG was pointing to everyone in the cast and stating which "one" he or she was. Like..."the ethnic one" or "the nerd" and I was "the nice one." I don't think that's accurate, although to a group of strangers it might be. I'm not offended. There are plenty worse things to be called.

The butter melts out of habit.
You know the toast isn't even warm.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Livin' the Life

Yesterday started my professional acting career. The paid improv show I'm in opened last night, and because I'm not working for either of my other jobs, this weekend I am living the life of a pro. That sounds glamorous, but its just strange.

Wake up late. Work out extensively. Primp extensively. Eat one giant meal at 3 PM so you can have a good workout prior and a good open post. Drive to theatre alone. Warm-up, discuss setlist, find key with accompanist, open. Expend all your energy. Greet your audience. Eat a banana in an empty dressing room. Wish for sleep. Begin the late show. Expend all your back-up energy. Leave the theatre at midnight alone. Drive the long road home. Hit the pillow. Repeat. Repeat. Repeat.


college junior year spring musical

Gilly had a headache last night. She was curled up minutes before our second open saying, "I just wanna go home." Although I was in perfect health, so did I. It was late. But performing gets to be like running--only difficult minutes before you go. Because during, you're distracted, and after, you feel great. Heck, during you feel great too.

I'm really not complainin' I realize its just a job, and I hate hearin' belly-achin' rockstars whine and sob. 'Cos I could be busin' tables. I could well be pumpin' gas, but I get paid much finer for playin' piano and kissin' ---

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Invisible Peeps

Been spending a lot of time alone lately. It doesn't feel like it because when I am around people its intense--a rehearsal or a billion high schoolers.

I could explain this in more detail, but I'll cut to the chase: I've been having problems...

A) differentiating snippets of my dreams from reality.
B) remembering if I had conversations with people or not.

Boop? WHAT HAPPENS WHEN PEOPLE FOR REAL DO SPEND DAYS ALONE? I just don't even want to imagine. Or, I am imagining now. Am I sitting here typing this or am I still driving across a bridge at night?

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Da Doo Run Run



Something I like about improv is that you get really gross while doing it. You can't really help it. You're moving and sweating and your hair is sliding out of your ponytail and bobby pins are flying and your eye makeup smears.

Usually actors have a charm, beauty, or delicacy about them. They're far away on a stage with costumes and make-up...but I feel like there's only so much facade you can keep up in improv. You're just...out there. Pit stains the size of Lake Michigan. And, it's even worse for your fellow actors.

Sunday I practiced barefoot because I had a giant blister from that Thanksgiving run. Shoe turned to me in a pause from an exercise, pointed down, and whispered, "Aren't you cold." I told him I had a blister, did he want to see? He thought, then shrugged. I pulled my foot up sideways and revealed the huge chunk of healing skin. He scrunched his nose and nodded, "Yeah," he said.

Oh oh oh, yeah, my heart stood still.
Yeah, his name was Bill.
And when he walked me home.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

SO ANGRY RIGHT NOW

THERE IS A MACY'S AD USING "SEASONS OF LOVE" FROM RENT. THE COMMERCIAL HIGHLIGHTS DIAMOND SALES.

I HATE DIAMOND COMMERCIALS. NO, you do not need a diamond to prove your love for another person in everlasting. Many things are everlasting. Also, diamonds are only valuable and expensive because diamond companies make them so. Diamonds are fundamentally not worth that much. They are not that rare. Also, remember Blood Diamond?

JONATHAN LARSON IS SPINNING IN HIS GRAVE!!!


fellow Renthead, Bradley, 2008

In daylights, in sunsets, in midnights, in cups of coffee.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

After Life: Part II

Yesterday morning I watched a wonderful and inspiring Japanese film called After Life. The premise is that after people die, they get to pick their favorite memory, a crew works to recreate it, and then for all of eternity people just relive that moment.

First of all, what a pleasant view of the afterlife.
Second of all, it's very interesting to think about what people would pick as their favorite memory.

In the film, many people picked memories from childhood. At first, I found that depressing. The best moment of life happens when you're in grade school? I started to wonder what mine was...if I too was guilty of peaking in my teens. But, when I thought about it more, having a perfect tranquil kid memory might only be the best memory because it sets an important tone for the rest of life.

It's so hard to pick the best. Some people in the movie had trouble because in the end, they felt that everything had been bad or bland. At least I would have trouble picking because there are too many good memories to consider.

If I had to pick right now this very second I guess I would pick to relive performing a sketch I wrote with Trel at summer camp in 2003. It was really funny, and we got an encore. Isn't that random? I don't know. I don't consider it a failure that I was fourteen. I could pick any one of a million memories from last year and feel just as happy--there's just something special about that July Talent Show. Oh, who knows.

Friday, November 26, 2010

After Life: Part I

This morning, at the demand of my sister, the three of us (Pookie, me, Pops) left for Target at 3:50 AM. Yes. Black Friday. It happened. She wanted to get a cheap Wii game. I won't complain because she also bought me the only Wii game that has interested me thus far: Coldstone Creamery Scoop It Up*.

ANYWAY the only thing I wanted from Target was a new Jillian Michaels DVD, so I was just leisurely cruisin' around the aisles. People kept looking at me like, "DON'T YOU KNOW THERE ARE STILL SOME BIG SCREENS LEFT!?!?" As a particularly frantic woman holding a tower of boxed items passed me as I was looking at a sweater, one of her DVDs slid off her stack and bonked me on the shoulder. Another manic shopper unapologetically nearly barreled over it with a cart. I casually picked up the movie and placed it evenly at the top of the purchaser's pyramid. She gazed deep into my eyes and said almost tearfully, "Thank you." I half-expected her to finish "...And bless you my child."

Anyway, an hour later we were back in the car, hopefully en route to more sleep. After hitting a Dunkin Donuts (where there was some 5:30 AM ugliness from me because my dad asked for an extra paper bag to separate his fritter and Pookie's Munchkins), we were home sweet home. We all took up couches and popped in a movie.


Pookie and I after finishing the Boomchunka Monster Sundae from Cherry Republic, 2009


*Yeah, I realize the irony of paying for my freshman year books by scooping ice cream at Marble Slab, and now as a graduate paying to do it virtually. If you are further interested in my career as a "cream-slinger" go here: http://bygonebureau.com/2009/08/24/the-worst-jobs-i’ve-ever-had/

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Thankful for Steve Martin

Yo yo yo comin' at cha from my dad's living room on Thanksgiving! Today I ran in a four mile run. It stopped raining right before start time! Thankful. It stunk of cooking turkeys during the last mile through the residential area, but I didn't yarf! Thankful. Pookie and Pops came out to support me in da cold cold cold. Thankful. Nommed a big ol' bunch of food later in the day. Thankful.


Reppin' the Giants!

I am reading a book by Del Close and Charna Halpern. It is absolutely smashing. I just can't get enough of comedy education. I loved Steve Martin's biography. I waited years to read it, and I finally did last month. I finished while I was running on a treadmill. The end was very moving and made me cry. No one could tell because I sweat. A lot. As was evidenced today.

"What is comedy? Comedy is the art of making people laugh without making them puke." -Steve Martin

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Morbid Wishes



When I brought my sweet little baby hammy home last year I had everything! I bought food, the cage, some treats, some blocks, and, of course, shavings. Dur.

I was trying to be a skimpy shopper as usual, so I bought the young lady a huge honkin' bag of pine shavings. I figured it would last me the year. Wrong. The little bag I bought to use for the first couple weeks of Blanche's new life ended up lasting me the entire year. Thus, I still have the huge bag. I bit the bullet and opened it a couple weeks ago. I keep it--you have to realize this is a bag of shavings about two and a half feet tall and a foot wide--in a garbage bag so the pine doesn't fall all over the darn place.

Okay SO. The other day I was tying it up to bring to my dad's house (the seasonal hamster sitter who incidentally just discovered the garbage bag full of shavings in his living room and exclaimed "This isn't--No!" as I was typing this) and I thought, "Good God. What if Blanche dies? What the heck am I gunna do with a trillion pine shavings?!?!" So I got quiet and made a little deal with the universe. I said, "Universe, I will help out the environment by not buying these shavings in vain if you make sure Blanche lives until they're gone. Alright?"

Catch a falling star and put it in your pocket. Never let it fade away.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Duet For One DI, Nationals 2006


Me and Pac after the Debate Banquet 2006

When I went to Nationals for Speech and Debate in 2006, there was this girl who performed Duet for One in a couple of my DI rounds, AND SHE WAS AMAZING. I remember watching her in quarter-finals and feeling I would be satisfied to lose to her. I even told my coach I was excited to watch her again in finals. But, then she wasn't in finals. She wasn't even in semis I don't think. I guess her talent wasn't as obvious to everyone else. But I thought she should have won the whole thing.

Now, this seems like I'm some weird creep who is obsessed with this stranger from five years ago...and yes, I admit, it's a little odd, but this is an open call out to that girl who was so good and got so little recognition. I've thought of her a couple times overs the years and hoped she had a good time in Dallas even though she was shafted.

I googled this yesterday: "duet for one" "DI" "Nationals 2006" "speech and debate." No results. Maybe she will one day do the same and find this, and either feel a little happy or feel a little scared that I am typing this from her closet...heh heh...heh....I just never told her I thought she was awesome! At least let me tell you, you people who have no connection to this entire event!

There is no future. There is no past. Let's live this moment as our last.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Turn on the Lights


Slou's eye, Summer 2010

Sometimes I start to feel really slow, like my body parts are seeping from thing to thing. Sometimes, when I am in bed watching "Community" on Hulu and working on my list of grad school applications, I start to feel crazy. I'm moving slower than honey spilling down from a packet. I'm finding information after two million mouse clicks and five million thought pauses. Oh. So. Slow.

And then I leave, and I come back, and I turn on the lights. And POOF. I'm zooming. I'm finding answers, I'm scootin' around, I'm drinking water, I'm getting it together.

It's a weird thing like having greasy hair, when the lights are off I just don't function. It feels so good to have them on.

My grandmother lived with my family when I was in pre-school. There was a pretty strict "only natural light" rule in the room she spent most of her days. It hurt her eyes because she was blind. I could not. I could not.

Let us die young or let us live forever.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Inertia


Kath & Me, Last Week

Yesterday I was looking at my planner and feeling like I didn't want to do any of it. Any of it! Not the meetings with my office, not the coaching of the children, not the fun plans for dinner, not the midnight Harry Potter showing. Literally nothing. Besides improv. Even then, I was ambivalent about driving into the city again.

I realized how little I would do if there were no consequences. I'm sure I would start with just a couple activities I liked and it would slowly wither to nothing. No matter what you do it can feel like too much. And, so, I'm grateful for my health which inspires me to run, economics that fuels my jobbing, kindness which pushes me forward into those social situations....because it's all really good for me and plain good. So, I guess I am glad. Even though as I type this I feel the overwhelming wish to never move again, I think back to yesterday and the good it brought. So, I guess I'll do stuff now.

Through the mirror of my mind, time after time,
I see reflections fo you and me. Reflections of
the way life used to be.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Oh Dear

I hit a dear.
I think I killed it.
I could not stop and check.
I am sorry.
I was shaking.

It was ten minutes from home.
A song from You're a Good Man Charlie Brown was playing--
"My New Philosophy."
It must have been on the median.
It ran at me, attempting suicide?
I braked hard, but its body was already crashing into my side.
I winced for glass to shatter.
I was driving Kay's car.

I said, "I'm sorry. I'm sorry. I'm sorry."
I cried and went straight to the bakery--Kay is on the late shift tonight.
I got out slowly, scared to examine the damage.
Side mirror broken. Dented door. Dead animal.
I walked with jelly legs to the bakery door. I looked in the back.
Kay put down the dish he was doing and smiled, it fell fast.
My hands were over my mouth. My glasses were fogged with tears.

It's not fair this should happen this week. This week I found a possum dying in front of me.
Kay excused himself from work a moment. He held my hand saying it was going to be okay.
He looked at the car scars, optimistic about insurance, grateful for my safety. He drove me home, walked me inside, embraced me, went back to work until 4 AM.

I hate that the creature is now a lump on the highway. I hate that my shoulder feels sore. I hope the hawks are hungry. I hope the bugs feast.

In a sick way, I feel blessed to have more proof of love.



And I could write a song a hundred miles long
Well, that's where I belong, and you belong with me

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Burger King Commercial

Maybe it's because I was just watching it while I was on a treadmill at the gym, but this new win a Wii from Burger King campaign seems stinks of advertising sabotage.

A fit woman and two other men in giant hamburger suits are playing Wii. The woman is obviously able to jump and scoot and move the controller. The men are bumbling around as these giant Whoppers and failing at the game.

The Point: Burger King is having some kind of contest about winning a gaming system.

What I Saw: God, you better not eat at Burger King. You'll be too fat and rolly-polly to even be a successful gamer.

F'real?! F'REAL?! WHO DID THIS AD CAMPAIGN? Was it secretly Bob Harper?

Edit: HAHAHA I accidentally typed "Burger Kind" a few times. Funny, no?

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Grasshopper

Little grasshopper, I found you in the bottom drawer of my bureau when I moved into my new place a few months back. I couldn't tell if you died sitting up straight, or if you were being still so I would not hurt you. I didn't know what to do. I don't mind bugs so much, but suddenly, you seemed really scary. A big leggy black-eyed thing just perching where I had intended to fold a sweatshirt. How did you get in there anyway?

I closed the drawer, still unsure.

I have not opened it since. In a perfect world, you hopped out through a hole in the back and are enjoying fall from underground. I don't want to prove my funfetti ending wrong. I just throw my sweatshirts here and there.

We're walkin' into the field.
We're walkin' into the forest.
The moon is before us up above.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Five Things (11/11)

Five things I have liked today:

1. Catching 11:11 on 11.11!
2. Eggs Benedict!
3. Realizing I am getting better at push-ups!
4. Watching that YouTube video "Girl freaking out because she can't sing" with Kath and laughing hella!
5. Opening my phone to see a self-planted surprise of my favorite Hyperbole and a Half drawing as my wallpaper!


trademark Allie Brosh

That is what I look like after most of my meals and/or snacks!

Five things I have disliked:

1. My lease is ending, and I don't know where I am going to live soon!
2. The post office was closed because of Vets Day, so I have to send my JET app supes early tomorrow morn!
3. I thought it'd be cool to literally run to Kay's house last night, and now I have a giant blister on my foot!
4. I put my hair in a bun, but it actually looked really bad, but I didn't realize it until I had already gone to work and meetings with many a peep probs noticing!
5. I keep egotistically looking at the college transcript on my desk, admiring my own grades, and then feeling like a jerk for doing so!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

A Nice Thing about God


Muff and Jamba's mini wedding cake

One nice thing about God for believers and non-believers alike, is that God is not a person. So, if you're deciding to reach out to God, whether you're comfortable being religious, or you are just trying it out for one second in a jam, you can't lose your pride to God. God's not going to call out, "Ha! I gotcha!"

You could be agnostic 'til the cows come home, but decide to pray just for one little day. Get on your knees, say thank you, ask for help, long to feel comforted...and no one has to know. It's not like hitting financial ruin and secretly going to a loan shark or being overcome with lust and seeking a prostitute. God is never going to show up at the same Walgreens as you and recognize you in front of your family. God is never going to spread a rumor about you and your vices that eventually gets back to your boss. Maybe you'd have to eat humble pie in front of a congregation your renounced or a friend who drags you to a Christian function, but in your own home, at your own kitchen table, with the lights turned on or off, after you found out your little wiener dog has to be put to sleep, you can sit still and feel God's presence if you want. No one is going to know. You don't even have to throw away your "I hate Jesus" t-shirt. You can wear it and still secretly ask God what to do.

That's a really nice thing about that God.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Choo Chew

Back with my high school friends. Meetin' where the train tracks end.


Graduation Eve

Sometimes I remember a Chicago news story from 2003. A boy, eleven, was late for a dental appointment. He was riding his bike. He was panicked. He had to cross train tracks. A train was coming. He would surely be late if he waited. He didn't cross fast enough and died right there. The dentist's secretary had to call his mother. She was mad he missed the check-up, but he kept not coming and not coming home and not being anywhere. His body was discovered later that night.

I heard a train whistle clear and loud today. It's sunny out. There are a lot of good things.

I wanna pull it apart and put it back together. I wanna relive all my adolescent dreams. Inspired by true events on movie screens. I am a one-man wrecking machine.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

The Decemberists

A couple weeks ago I was walking to my sister's apartment, and I passed a couple on the road.

"HEY!" The girl dropped her boyfriend's hand and scampered toward me. "I heard you like The Decemberists!" Her eyes, perched on her flat circular face, were wide with excitement. I was, of course, caught off guard. I didn't know this girl. "Uh...no," I replied. I don't really like The Decemberists that much. They're a little bit "wah-wah moody mood" for me. But, I felt bad. She blushed and inched back to her beau trailing off the conversation while going: "Oh...not even...a little? Uh...well..."

I walked on and told my sister about it. I described the gal and Pookie vaguely knew her. She probably got us confused as many people do because Katie does enjoy The Decemberists quite a bit. She probably wanted to invite me/her/us to a concert or something--just the kind of thing small communities need, right? Using gossip about interests for good over evil. Anyway, I felt bad for being so curt. I was just surprised.


We do look alike. Summer 2010.

Anyway, a couple days ago my sister saw this same girl somewhere, and picking up the ball I dropped forwardly smiled and said, "I hear you like The Decemberists?" Raising her eyebrows and narrowing her lips the girl answered, "I know The Decemberists. One of them went to my high school."

A. That hardly means anything. Robin Tunney went to my junior high. You don't see me freakin' out and promoting The Craft. And, B. Nuts to a community! She just wanted to brag to a potential fan.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Work Out, Not Up



Today I am reminding myself of the ever-present Good.

I get so worked up in things I need and want that sometimes I can't actually see their faces--like how you can't tell a friend is gaining weight, a light bulb is getting dimmer. All I see are these little chunks of life, and I cannot figure out where the change happened or understand that it might be good for me.

Applying for JET is a perfect example. I am writing all these statements and filling things out and getting paperwork together in an attempt to get an interview and be offered a position. Even though I am working towards it, and I want to do it, I barely consider actually working there as I am so focused on getting there. Maybe that's a good way to live--in the present, working on the task at hand without daydreaming. But, if I do not get an interview, I know I will be disappointed. Failure, you know. Yet, I have spent so little mind energy deciding why it would be a great and necessary experience...I really shouldn't feel any regret. It's just the trying for something and not getting it that would really ruffle me. A faceless opponent indeed.

With these things that plop into my life unannounced, I almost never get excited or even relaxed. I just feel muddled by the sudden whips of fate. But, I should work out, stretching my arms wide to what everything brings. Jumping up and down may burn calories, but it also burns my thinking capacities to see a good future despite surprises.

Your bags are packed. Not a word was spoken. Guess we said everything with "goodbye." Time moves so slow. Promises get broken on that cold day in July.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

JET Application


photo by Bradley, Japan 2008

HOW THE HECK AM I SUPPOSED TO CRAM ALL MY AWESOME QUALITIES AND CRAZY DESIRE TO TEACH ENGLISH IN JAPAN INTO TWO MEASLY DOUBLE-SPACED PAGES?!?!

I've come this far but even so,
it could be yes, it could be no.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

She's the One

I worked really hard today. Plus, I was up late goofing around with Kay. He baked banana bread last night as I graded my brains away. I feel edgy about walking around his place--like an owner or parent will just be there one day. But, no. It's a sweet little house just for him. And sometimes me.

"There's no rules at my house except for have fun! Oh God, I sound like a t-ball coach."-Kay

Anyway, I was still writing and feedbacking around 5 PM today and suddenly this fat puma of fatigue sat on my head. I barely put my computer down before conking out. I woke up feeling like I had been lying in a greasy frying pan for half an hour. I was really scared. I was suddenly aware of my mortal age. "I am 22," I thought and touched my face, looked at my hands. Yesterday I was reading in bed and felt overcome with a fluttery feeling of perfection, grace, consistency. I was sitting on daisy petals and even then remembered to tell myself to save some for a rainy day. Yet, today, every flower was missing. No lightness--just crushing steel.

"I'm watching The Legend of Sleepy Hollow the cartoon version, and I'm scared out of my mind!" -Pookie, the phone call I am having right now


May 2010

And if you wait for me. I'll give you everything.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Mmm Soft Little Sack

Eight years ago today I was in a closing show of Les Miserables at my high school in Chicago. Les Mis takes place in revolutionary France, mostly at a barricade. Thus, the set is domineered by a huge junk heap in the middle of the stage.

I was playing Gavroche--the little boy who dies on the barricade while attempting to gather ammunition from cadavers. I sang a solo as I was dying that got cut off by a final gun shot. Awesome. After my death, a huge battle would ensue, leaving all deceased with the lead rabble-rouser Enjrolas taking the final spill. After the sequence, the orchestra would play a pensive tune, and the lights would fade except for a blue spotlight on mine and Enjrolas's limp bodies as the barricade was wheeled off-stage. I would position myself over a wooden barrel and the senior playing Enjrolas laid stiffly on an old door above me.

On opening night as the huge set piece was being spun around it started to creak. Keep in mind that high school theatre sets are usually made by hyped-up fourteen year olds with power tools. Right as the spotlight lit me and my castmate, the door cracked right off the set, and Enj, being the serious actor he was, didn't break character, so he rolled right on top of me with full force. I didn't move. As soon as we were offstage, I burst into tears. My arm felt broken.

"OH CRAP!" Enj was whisper/yelling, "OH GOD! I AM SO SORRY! I was thinking, 'The door is breaking! But, then I rolled right onto a soft little sack thank God! And then I realized...that's not a soft little sack! That's Alice!" I couldn't laugh. I was in mild shock and concerned about coming on as a ghost in the next scene. I shakily walked away from everyone, clutching my arm. I waited backstage.

My boyfriend (also in the play) came running to me as soon as he heard, "Hey," he said."Hey, are you okay? I'll do whatever you want. We don't have to finish the show." So funny. I can picture him trying to explain to our director why he missed every entrance throughout the entire end of Act Two. I shook my head and finished the show in a hazy state. I could feel peace being restored to my body. During curtain call, Enjrolas stepped on my foot. "I'm so so sorry!" he mouthed, eyes bugging.


My freshman year bf, 2002

Today as I was walking by a large window I saw my shape moving out of the corner of my eye. It looked like a soft little sack--amorphous and grey, covered by a sweater.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Cracker Barrel Caper

1. After I picked my sister up from the airport last week, we ate at Cracker Barrel.

Ia. I do not care what you say, Cracker Barrel is the cat's pajamas. The blueberry pancakes are supes fluffy, you can get biscuits and molasses, and two eggs with toast for like two dollars.

1b. Plus that little peg mind-game at every table.

2. We each got eggs and toast plus coffee plus hash browns etc.

3. Our dinner was twelve dollars total.

4. I paid.

5. Our waitress was really nice. Pookie insist she get a good tip.

6. I gave her over 20%, putting the total cost of meal a little over 16 bucks.

7. We went to Fro My Goodness and spent almost as much on frozen yogurt as we had on dinner.

8. We commented on and laughed about this.

9. I checked my bank statement a couple days ago and found a charge to the Cracker Barrel $25.67.

10. I was sure this is not right because we had specifically jokes about the low cost of dinner.

11. I became suspicious of the cashier who could have easily fudged my tip section.

12. I found the receipt in my car! Indeed, the meal was $16 with tip!

13. I had busted an employee for fraud!

14. I looked up the establishment's number and grew excited. I was really to demand at least a $100 gift card. They owed me a ten buck refund, plus they had committed fraud, PLUS what if there had been an overdraft fee? Free biscuits on the road forever and ever amen.

15. I was about to make the call today, so I checked my banks statement once more to be sure of the exact amount I was charged.

16. The statement detailed a $25 purchase from Crate and Barrel.

17. Smack head. Lots.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Happy Halloween

Halloween is my favorite holiday. I love fall. I love sweets. I love the macabre and the scary. I love pumpkins. I am sad to see it go.

Today was a great day. Kay and I cooked up some egg sandwiches, the weather was perfect for an afternoon run, I audited the improv class I will soon be teaching, my sister cooked a killer zucchini pasta, and the Giants won. (One more game baby!) Not so Halloweenie though. I mean, we're doing haunted houses next weekend, and I did enjoy a fab party at Cocoa's last night. Still. No mini candies, no tiny costumes. No school-sanctioned orange cupcakes.

There are very very VERY few times I consider having children. It's definitely not the time and generally not my interest. But today...I wouldn't have minded toting some kiddos around. Maybe I could have rented some.


middle school camping trip 2009

Que sera sera. Whatever will be will be.
The future's not ours to see. Que sera sera.


EDIT: After thinking about kids on Halloween for about five more seconds, I was re-horrified by the memories of children screaming, crying, and tantruming ... Nevermind my Halloween was perfect.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Yatchy Entry

Sometimes don't you wish someone hadn't taught you how to think? That all you did was enjoy watching Survivor and grinding on guys at bars and reading TMZ every day? I'm not dissing any of those activities, but wouldn't it be nice if that was it? If you were illiterate and didn't believe in global warming and thought trash disintegrated into the ground and human rights were a last priority and money really for real wasn't important and wasn't limited and guilt wasn't a sin and wasn't a reality and everyone who didn't like you needed to get over it and all the work you didn't do right was just whatever because the paycheck keeps coming baby and consumerism was fun again?

Right now the high school Lincoln-Douglass debate resolution is that states ought not own nukes. As I was watching some awkward kids in suits last week I began to day dream I was in the debate with a neg case arguing that the owning of nukes will lead to an accident or use of nukes which would put brains and consciences out of their miseries. Value criterion: utalitiariansim--happiness for all the lil minds and hearts in the world through total destruction.


Tokyo Disney November 2008

This happened to me twice before, won't happen to me anymore.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Eating Animals


Veggie lasagna baked by Kay Summer 2010

Last night I got home late from an improv jam. I am so grateful I found this group. It's perfect. They're friendly, flexible with learning curves, but challenging. Last night, for example, I nailed nothing in four hours of working. But, I made progress--which feels SO good. There are definitely times I reflect on an exercise and realize I was the weakest link, but I am sucking it all down and learning so much.

I was beat and tapped on my window. Kay was over, lying in bed and reading Eating Animals. He opened the curtains, slid the glass, and I crawled in. The extra steps to a door are worth a lot when you're sleepy. He showed me something I had written in the margin of the book last year about nihilism. I explained. There are roughly four things that defer existential crisis for me:

1. Continuing my commitment to vegetarianism.
2. Running and exercise.
3. Writing--usually on this blog actually. It's bite-size.
4. Improv.

There's a lot else I love--but it gets tricky. Spiritual literature can be a savior or a jerk in times of pointlessness. Sweets can make you sick. Sleep can make you tired. The Office isn't always funny. You get chapped lips when you kiss too much. So, I thank you God for my four little reasons to get up in the morning.

You have to be the cutest gravedigger I've ever seen.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Up Now



I know the night. I know this night.
I have been up doing small things upon things
for no reason
besides I can't sleep.

After the surprise
"It's late!"
come the tries
to drift, but
the clicking lamp back on, the rolling, scoot, sit.

I am up. I know this night. Boredom.
Moving slow. So
slow. Then, sweet night
is here. I know this night! This night
reminds me that it's all fine. I am alone.
It's so quiet. Blanche whirs, stops. I write, stop.
There's something personal here--something very
velvety. I love this night!

I move with more excitement. I sort through new inspirations.
I gracefully gather up all the yolk of dreams and ex-worries.
I whisk them into night's filling. Night's work.
I work. I plot. I plan--it's all good until--

I know this night. Oh, how I know it.
I'm alone again.
It's fall again.
It's cold here. I need some noise to drown out my own remembered conversations!
Please!
A noise!
I know this night
of let-downs. Of pasts--they do not change.
I know the night now. I know it now.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Way to Go, Slim!


But if we can hump dead animals and antelopes
then there's no reason that a man and another man can't elope


My iPod was on shuffle, and I heard this little old tune by our friend Eminem. I was obsessed with "The Real Slim Shady" back in the day. I taped it off the radio using my Hello Kitty boom-box. I know all the words, but today I realized I hadn't been listening to most of them. When I heard the line seen above, I was moved.

Think about it--Slim just defended gay marriage. In a rap. In 2000. A rap that was top of TRL and Billboard. Heck yeah, Em! Way to go! I know, I know--he's been notorious for using the F-slur...Even now that he's had to come out and say that term doesn't mean "gay" to him (okay, he's an idiot--neither here nor there) and has graciously (?) refrained from calling gay pop stars the word by switching it out with "fake its"...THE POINT is that in 2000 he had a ballsy little line worked into his nation-wide hit.

Women wear your pantyhose. Sing the chorus and it goes!

Monday, October 25, 2010

Friday, October 22, 2010

Sixteen

In hindsight my first day of school at my new high school was hilarious. At the time it was horrible--why it's such a good story now.

I'll tell it briefly: At lunch I walked with purpose and confidence into the cafeteria. I sat at a long empty table. I knew someone would eventually sit at least at the other end. I had absolutely zero friends, so I had no idea at all what was going to happen, but I also had little shame. I wouldn't even know who to be embarrassed in front of.

The kids came swarming in, but unlike my old Chicago school where seats in the caf were coveted, and some people had to smoosh onto one small stool to eat, it was easy to space and spread out in St. Louis. No one came. No one came. No one joined me. Kids kept flooding in. No one sat with me, and then, suddenly a boy about my age--a cute and nice looking boy came up to me and asked very sweetly if anyone was sitting across from me. I said no, and he pulled out the chair, beckoned his friends over, and they swarmed the table, grabbing up every single chair that wasn't mine in about ten seconds time. I was aghast, alone, at a huge table with no chairs eating a PB&J. Eventually, halfway through lunch, the principal came over to me and tried to warm the situation by discussing how good PB&J is.

I did not tell that story to anyone at school--even after I had plenty of happy friends. Too mortifying, and the dreaded table still existed. I had daydreams of setting it on fire.

The next year in winter I was casually auditioning for a page to stage production at a theatre festival. It was no big thing--just some audition experience, but they didn't ask for a monologue. They asked you to tell a story on the spot, and that was the story that came to my mind first. So, I told it. I talked about my pathetic first day of school in this huge studio space with some hundred other high schoolers watching. I hadn't thought anyone from my school would be there, but then I finished, looked up, and saw J-Rod standing in the back of the crowd. He and I were stars of the school musical. He knew my secret.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Snow Started Fallin'


February 2008


This will be the year I stop hating winter. This song helps.

Well I met you at the blood bank
We were looking at the bags
Wondering if any of the colors
Matched any of the names we knew on the tags

You said, "See look thats yours!
Stacked on top with your brother's
See how the resemble one another
Even in their plastic little covers"

And I said I know it well

That secret that you knew
But don't know how to tell
It fucks with your honor
And it teases your head
But you know that its good girl
Cos its running you with red

Then the snow started falling
We were stuck out in your car
You were rubbing both of my hands
Chewing on a candy bar

You said "'Aint this just like the present
To be showing up like this"
As a moon waned to crescent
We started to kiss

And I said I know it well

That secret that we know
That we don't know how to tell
I'm in love with your honor
I'm in love with your cheeks
What's that noise up the stairs babe?
Is that Christmas morning creaks?

And I said I know it well
I know it well



December 2006

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

I Woke Up Early to Run



And yet, I am not running. This is a trend I've realized in myself lately that I really don't like: I get scared and annoyed by things in a big looming shadowmonster way without really seeing what the problem is. This morning I woke up--not groggy. I got up, I brushed my teeth, and then I quivered contemplating the run.

I exercise every day, so I should just run now rather than later. Also, I feel fine and healthy, and its not too cold out. Also, I really like running. I don't usually push myself too hard, and I find it very relaxing. Yet, there is this huge breathing beast of fear here in bed with me as I type. I got very quiet, still, and began to ask questions. It took a long time because at first all I could feel was the saliva drip of the monster as he exhaled sharply onto my cheek. Rationality flew out the window--all that mattered is I listen to FEAR. But, I continued on, "Why don't you want to run? What is wrong? Let's go through step by step."

I figured it out. My running headphones broke, which means I have to use a different set that bounce a lot and I have to hold at an awkward angle and they have started to break, and I don't want to run sans music this morning. I've thought enough these days. Now, I'm not sure what to do. I cracked the case. Is the answer to pat myself softly on the back and stay in bed? Do I get going right now and have an annoyed jog? More importantly, how can I stop myself from doing this with every aspect of my life? The fear is too much.

She started freezing, lungs all collapsing
The momentum is passing, but the moment is eating us whole

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Bloody Mary

Tonight Big Taco was here. He is en route to a new life in a new city. He has been promising me a ghost story for almost a year, so tonight he came over. It was good to see him--this guy who used to b a good friend. College is funny like that. One quarter you eat dinner every day together, and then you see each other a couple times a month in passing, and then one of you leaves, and then you may never have a traditional spooky story telling night again.

Tonight Big Taco came over to tell me about eerie things that happened to him while he was living in Alaska last year. As to not bother Wiz who does not like scary things, we decided to go into the bathroom and turn off the lights. We were in there no longer than twenty seconds before he said, "I don't like bathrooms without the lights on because of Bloody Mary--" and before he had even finished speaking I had bolted out into the light, banging my knee in the process, and he was right behind me. Exploding from the tile and rustling shower curtain. We howled with laugher, amazed we could be so scared in under a minute. Roommates Wyn and LC heard and came out. What? What's this? We explained and they grinned--also fans of the macabre.

We sat in a circle on the floor of LC's bedroom and scared ourselves silly. I just realized something about myself: I'm really happy when I am scared. I always knew I liked scary stuff, but I am actually really happy when I expose myself to scary stuff. Internally, I checked in as my heart was stomping. I was frightened and happy.

I died so I could haunt you.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Men


September 2010

There are so many good men in the world. I know everyone keeps saying there just aren't, but on the contrary, I am blessed with many good men in my little life. Men who send postcards with pictures of us stuck to them, men who give me hot chocolate making appliances and boxes of powder, men who suggest new albums, men who stop their cars as I walk by--sweating from a late night run--wanting me to know they say "hello," men who do improv, men who try, men who invite me over for tea, men who ask for copies of my work, men who did high school policy debate, men who are shy and lovingly silent.

I met a man last week who was a fast friend. We bonded in a matter of ten minutes about Japanese culture, professional improv, the city, the suburbs, script-writing. It was wild. But, you know, how do you say in a loud bar, "No. I know where you think this is going, and I know I have no ring, but this isn't it for you" besides, of course, denying his drink offer.

I want to keep these men. All of these men. I love these men for being good despite the rumors. And, I do want to keep meeting more--more Japan/performing/funny enthusiasts. I wonder if they are notes from God reminding me that if something happens and Kay is no more, there's always more. Or, if the men will increase a millionfold--the most difficult test of loyalty.

Today I can think of nothing else besides the kind of man who spent the day judging a speech tournament with me, who is impressed with all the right things, who loves baseball and soup, who held my hand in a haunted forest, who drove with conviction and sunglasses, who is just feet away as I type. Unaware.

We were just kids when I first kissed you in the attic of my parent's house, and I wish we were there now.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Mozza-rella!

This weekend I was slicing some fresh mozzarella for salad while Kay cooked dinner, and out of nowhere I was belting in an Italian/Spanish accent the story of young girl whose step-mother (Colby Jack) would not let her go to the ball and dance with Prince Gjetost. Her name...was Mozza-rella! And, then, after like, seriously way longer than that type of thing should go on (ten minutes?) I looked at Kay who was trying to inch out of the doorway. Boop.

Yesterday morning I was running with my broken iPod, trying to gain a sense of peace about the day. Yes, I have officially become the kind of person who listens to spiritually motivating lectures while I run. Anyway, the iPod works, but the volume is permanently on full blast, so it's this peaceful woman's voice screaming into my ear. Anyway, I was running in the middle of the woods and I got a huge whiff of marinara sauce. It was overwhelming. What's weird is that out of all the millions of times I have eaten pizza in my life, the memory I apparently associate mariana smell with is the community pool I went to growing up. During adult swim, my sister and I would eat pizza and nachos and pretzels and ice cream etc. etc.

I began to think about the teenagers I thought were so rad when I was four. They were twelve to fifteen years older than me. That puts them in their late thirties now. I didn't like that. How on earth could those side-ponytailed gals and those big haired dudes singing along to Paula Abdul have kids and careers and do anything besides serve pizza!?


Lincoln Park Zoo, 2009

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Tennessee


Peace Please! Bradley & Nac, 2009.

"So far, the law has been challenged only once. Filed by an anonymous waiter, the complaint contended that allowing guns into a tavern creates an unsafe work environment for servers. His complaint was denied by the state’s Division of Occupational Safety and Health." -Malcolm Gay on Tennessee gun laws that say loaded guns in bars = A-OK

Of course at first I was frustrated beyond belief. WHO THOUGHT THIS WAS A GOOD IDEA?! Seth Meyers on SNL made some Weekend Update crack like, "If you're from one of those states wondering how you're gunna die...You're gunna be shot in a bar." But, you know, I've never been to Tennessee, maybe it's really as full of rapists, killers, and thieves as the NRA and Tennessee court systems seem to think it is. Tennessee: So Many Criminals We Need Guns Everywhere. I never understand that. Do gun-loving groups realize they are devaluing the place they live (their town, city, state, country) when they say it is necessary to have guns? Are you really making a case for the safety of Tennessee civilians when you make it seem like 4 out of 5 people are going to walk into restaurants on a killing spree? I sort of want everyone in Tennessee to die if its become that riddled with crime. At least that would be good for the environment. Think about it--some million extra bodies promoting the heat death of the universe disappear and country music decreases tenfold. I like it. Shoot on!

Do me a favor. If I should waver, be my savior, and get out the gun.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Never Gonna Get It



Lately I've been feeing sorry for Blanche. She has figured out that the top hatch of her cage is freedom. She now spends 75% of her time climbing the bars, doing a backbend, and waving her paws and/or teeth at the latch. She grabs hold just as she falls back--pomp--into shavings. She may be improving how long she can hang on to the latch, how long she can stand on one foot as she bends, how to swing and grasp the ceiling in one try, but she's still never gunna get out. The hatch opens up, and unless she built some type of cannon, she could not propel herself fast enough to bust out of the cage.

Plus, freedom would be horrible. She'd be sucked up in a vacuum cleaner immediately. I live far from the forest.

I aspire to be the kind of person never pitied for her goals and progress in achieving them. It's possible that her attempts at escape make Blanche's life meaningful, but I sorta doubt it.

They hand you the knife and tell you to cut it up right.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Stranger Pumpkin


Last Halloween

Target is so dangerous to me right now. Also bakeries. I absolutely love pumpkins in every possible sense. Pumpkin candles, scones, coffee, chocolates, stuffed animals dressed as pumpkins, pumpkin piggy banks, real pumpkins, pumpkin sweaters, a pumpkin card I bought.

Today my dad was were visiting. We saw Devil together. We have a tradition with M. Night movies. It was okay--not as good as the ol stuff, but not as horrid as the past couple movies.

The thing was, it's been out a while, and we went in the middle of the day. So, there were a total of four people in the theatre. And...then this random girl came and sat right next to my dad and I...and she insisted on not sitting on the side by the stairwell. She actually came a couple minutes late to the movie and wanted to sit right next to me, and she wanted to scootch past both of us to get there. Remember, there are four people in the theatre. What?

I'm sure this type of thing would have made more sense fifty years ago. You go to a movie alone, so you sit with some strangers and make a friend. I know I'm a horribly anti-social person and the internet has eaten my soul. Funny though right?

Since I moved in high school I'm never afraid to make new friends. I figured moving into adulthood etc. I would be meeting peeps and making friends all the time, but I'm actually pretty darn busy. New friends? Who has time?

Turn the lights off. Carry me home.