Saturday, January 31, 2009

you're a dick.

what i should have said to an ex lover i nearly walked into on houston this weekend. so odd. but instead, i said "heyyyyy." awkward, isn't it? running into someone you once slept with? his eyes said i was the last person he expected or wanted to see. lucky for him, i wasn't his girlfriend catching him in the act of messing around on her. and that he was. i can hear the story he must've told her. "I'm going to new york this weekend to watch the superbowl with my boys." it's not right.

and something else...likely the most important piece of this: a sigh of relief. i am relieved. relieved to have him fully, absolutely out of my life. a tinge of guilt. "i'll text him and say 'it was good running into you'." but it wasn't good. and what's the point? i didn't text, nor did he. so...nothing. nothing but perhaps a reminder that the heart heals when it's ready to. what was once so much--a reason to come back. a reason to try again. a reason to reconsider. a reason to cut him a break. a reason to forgive the other women. a reason to give him space. a reason to let go. a reason to get on with life--is now nothing. but just maybe that IS something.Balloon Girl, Banksy

p.s. happy chinese new year! though today's parade prevented me from crossing the street to get to my apartment, all is forgiven. the dragons were lovely. and the baby with the ox-horn know who you are--simple adorable.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

hurt. heal.

i'm supposed to write a letter to you. you will not read it. it would hurt you. or not.

you will never know the sweetness, nor the misery, and that i missed you for so long, and how, one day, i stopped.

you will never ever find out what happened when i was 6. and you will never know how I blame you for every. single. bad. thing that happened thereafter.

and how i have hated you and hated loving you.

you will never know how many times i have lied...over and over and over and over and over...about you. i kept your secret.

you will never know how i labor with the will never from A Relationship Left for Dead on the Lower East Side--on view through Feb. 21. This and other works chronicle a gay couple's relationship over a number of years through photos from their picture album--the album was found, abandoned on a street in the LES.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

recession-proof me.

many of us are feeling the bite of the recession in one way or another. for a girl who likes to indulge in the somewhat-finer things, it's been super tough to cut back on my weekend shopping sprees. but all is not lost. for one, i love vintage and re-sale shopping--and a great deal of my wardrobe, and all of my boots are either thrift or ebay purchases. it feels less like shopping, and more like recycling--thus, lessening the guilt factor, boosting the green factor, and, keeping more of the other kinda green in my wallet.

it's said that during these tough times, buying yourself something small, like new makeup, keeps a lady happy. it's called the 'lipstick effect.'

so, today when alesia and I bounced over to soho, I had to put on my horse-sized blinders--in sephora, where all the magically delicious face and body-care products call to me, that's a colossal effort. i'm a moisturizing ADDICT! i want this and i want that...and by this i mean the urban decay concealor, and that: the korres fig shower gel and body butter. but i stopped myself from splurging--I know, no fun. instead, i bought something i needed. a new hat...a true necessity in this cold-wave we're experiencing in the north east. I convinced a hat man on orchard to sell me this 25-dollar, hand-knitted beauty for 15 bucks. Baby soft and warm--this little hat feels like something my grandma might've knitted, had she been a knitter.

We ended a day of mostly browsing and gawking with 6-dollar cuban ham-n-cheese sandwiches, and 2-dollar yeast donuts from Donut Plant. yum! Indeed, an ab-fab, recession-proof way to spend a Sunday afternoon! p.s. I Googled "how to knit" and apparently it's self-teachable. hmmm, a new recession-proof hobby?

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

finished. done.

i finished my steve martin book on the subway today. I didn't want to finish. When I reached the last 10 pages, I slowed down, put the book away for 3 days--I wanted to hold on. The last word meant the end, and I wasn't ready. But today, I did it. I ended it. I let something sublime out of my life. I have the memories though, and I'll tell stories about it--but it's done. Perhaps I'll re-read it. Not many people immediately re-read a book they've just finished, do they? They return it to the another book...forget about it...miss it...and one day it calls out to them and they pick it up again. but that could take years, if at all.

I'm rambling and leading you into some other piece of my life...and I'd rather not. Instead, I'll share with you one of my favorite bits from Steve's book, The Pleasure of My Company (thanks again, angda.)

The day after the letter was Easter Sunday. It reminded
me that as an adolescent I was primped and combed and
then incarcerated in a wool suit that had the texture of
burrs. I was then dragged to church, where I had to sit
for several hours on a cushionless maple pew in the
suffocating Texas heat. These experiences drained me
of the concept of Jesus as benevolent.

p.s. jay leno just said the funniest thing. "Barack Obama's first order of business will be to pardon Aretha Franklin's hat." ha.

Monday, January 19, 2009

feeling good.

i think i'm more of an exhibitionist than a narcissist. i'm not self-obsessed, but i do enjoy attention. so i'm embracing it. i felt kinda lovely this weekend. not sure it mojo, or a new president, or call it finishing a 20-page essay, though it's much too long, so now i'm in the editing phase. And i started a new essay. yes, if you could see me you'd see a woman patting herself on the back.

my hair is getting long and unruly, and i need to figure out if i'm gonna get a trim or go long and scraggly. kind likin' scraggly, though several times this weekend, while eating, i got a mouthful of my hair. and during a few cigarette breaks, almost lit my hair on fire. seeee...cigarettes are dangerous kids. today i celebrated the holiday the way MLK intended, spreading peace, loving my fellow man (and woman), and letting freedom ring. And I did something I rarely take the time to do--I took a quiet walk in Riverside Park--and showed a little appreciation for the beautiful snow-capped trees.

p.s. i've only recently "discovered" alice smith. i'm late i'm sure, i tend to "discover" most musicians late. anyway, i love her a lot right now. what a voice. and she's sorta beautiful, isn't she?

Friday, January 16, 2009

so this is for my lovely.

hannah posted this in my comments section, and I thought it deserved to be front-and-center. it's beautiful and sad, and written by Frank O'Hara.

I've only recently (like a month ago) started to gradually warm up a bit to poetry--thanks to another talented friend who's shown me that poetry isn't all lofty rhyme, finger-snapping, and exaggerated (bordering on pompous) voice inflections. Poetry can be simple--just letters that impart feelings and other things with or without an orator, in other words, a story. Like, I could write a dedication to this most-perfect tea I'm drinking right now (but I won't), and if it were a good enough poem, you'd be able to taste it just from the words on the screen. I'm rambling...anyway, here's the poem by Mr. O'Hara...titled "Poem (To Franz Kline)".

I will always love you
though I have never loved you

a boy smelling faintly of leather
looking up at your window

the passion that enlightens
and stills and cultivates, gone

while I sought your face
to be familiar in the blueness

or to follow your sharp whistle
around a corner into my light

That was love growing fainter
each time you failed to appear

I spent my whole life searching
love, which I thought was you

it was mine so very briefly
and I never knew it, or you went

I thought it was outside disappearing
but it is disappearing in my heart

like snow blown in a window
to be gone from the world

I will always love you.

p.s. it makes me sad that Mr. O'hara died in car crash on fire island--such a beautiful place. i didn't know you could drive cars on fire island.

p.p.s. this photo is incredible...(close-up of yesterday's crash-landing).

Thursday, January 15, 2009

i'm going to bore you now.

I finished my two intro writing classes tonight--and I've come away with several insights:

1) I'm a better writer than I thought. yay. And being surrounded by other good writers only heightens my lust for authoring something great and lovable.

2) I'm a slow writer. I'm okay with that. Slowness can be a strength, said the tortoise.

3) I need to be more aggressive and really PUSH myself. The vision is there--but I hold back. Must be less lazy and more confident!

4) Knowing the plot is the easy part--character development is where it gets complicated. Making readers like your protagonist--and pull for him/her is a toughie.

5) NYC is full of lonely, batty people--and some of them take writing classes solely for human contact. On the elevator ride up to Creative Writing, some guy spilled his purpose for taking a Non-Fiction class all over me. He's writing a self-help book, and this was his 2nd non-fiction writing class b/c he was trying to decide which instructor he prefered, blah blah blah, and he's taking Non-fiction because it's hard to fit self-help into one particular writing genre. hmmm. All that from floors 1 to 4, and I can't say I really cared to know any of it. But, I'm polite (or naive, as my friend Peter would say), so I said "Oh. Ahh ha. Well, good luck." And I meant it.

6) If you can help it, do not sign up for a writing class where the instructor talks more about herself and her "commitment-phobic boyfriend" than the actual writing process. While her life might be an interesting one--I don't want to pay $425 to hear about it--I could pay $13.95 and just read her memoir.

p.s. Noooooooooooooooooo!

p.p.s. i just re-read this post, and it's really self-centered. forgive me...

r.i.p. mr. roarke.

And may your legacy live on through netflix. At age 5, I was hooked on Fantasy Island—it terrified me and gave me nightmares--I blame Herv√© Villechaize--yet, you couldn't pry me away from the television. The show was right up there with the The Love Boat and Romper Room. wow. he was a dreamboat...look at those eyes **swoon**
I haven't seen this movie (yet), but don't you just love the getthefuckouttahere side-eye he's giving this damsel?

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

vanity is good for your health.

The only reason I haven't smoked a cigarette in two days is b/c I don't want my hair to smell like an ashtray. It took 2 hours to flat iron, and I'm not throwing that away for 4 minutes of nicotine-laced joy.

And then, there's this buzz about third-hand smoke. The message here: Don't smoke when your kids are around you...duh. Oh, and don't smoke in your house or car if you have kids, and don't let your kids sniff your hair after you've finished smoking.

Monday, January 12, 2009

the world is afraid of eccentrics.

or at least, Hollywood is. What's wrong with having fun, and being a bit OFF, or wearing a tacky, over-the-top shiny suit--even if it means landing on the worst-dressed list, in the case of Mickey here?!

I really appreciate Mickey--he was my favorite celeb of the night--funky suit, sequins, blonde highlights, (botox), wallet chain and all. He'd be my pick to hang out with at the after-party. Can you imagine the stories (and the drugs--but oh, lets not go there)? Perfect bores the hell out of me.

p.s. The Wrestler is on this week's must-do list.


Sunday, January 11, 2009

a dozen or so things...

...that make for a perfect saturday night.

1) A lovely, crazy girl named "granpa."
2) sephora.
3) blackest eye liner.
4) American Apparel.
5) figure skater dress (oh no!)
6) You've got a bruise on your back. No, it's cupping. Oh.
7) vintage boots.
8) joie de vivre. joie de vivre.
9) snow. snow. snow.
10) quesadillas and caesar salad. water with lemon please.
11) a dog in shoes. poor thing!
12) herbal medicine...................American Dad reruns. 12oz bag of popcorn. LOL. California Dreaming. Tiny Dancer. Last Christmas. Caribbean Queen. Smooze. Love Will Never Do Without You. LMAO. Susan Miller. Ben & Jerry's. Who draws the ice-cream art for Ben & Jerry's? A ride on the 1-train. Making faces at dogs. Now the D-train. Making faces at beautiful guy (his bike was in my way. what?! it was! *giggle*). Home. I Be Troubled. Baby Please Don't Go. Mannish Boy. Going Down Slow. Zzzzzzz.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

night and day.

last night, i went out with meredith to do some post-work, pre-dinner consignment shopping. As we were digging through the racks of the very tiny, but surprisingly great Tokyo Joe, trying on pre-loved dresses and sweaters, this song came on and i froze in my tracks, my hands gripping a near-perfect Rhuel wrap sweater. Meredith tilts her pretty head and looks at me with "mom" concern-- "What?" And now i've lost all control.

I have this little arrangement with myself when it comes to PDA (public displays of angst): If I feel I'm going to cry, but no one notices, I can slurp back my tears so that my eyes are just glassy for a sec, but no roll-down-my-face tears actually materialize. Yet once someone's notices the tearlings, and questions them...that's it--waterworks! So, when Meredith asks "What?", I do the face-fanning motion, but the tears well up and I tell her, "It's this song! Man...this song reminds me of [a boy I love]." More tears. Bigger tears. "And I've never heard it played by anyone else." Until now.

I suppose we all have one of these songs--or 2 or 3--that reminds us of a certain someone, don't we? And you either laugh or cry--or if you're like me, you do one right after the other.

If you have a moment (really only 3 minutes and 3 seconds), and you'd like to hear something deeply pleasant and near-and-dear to the girl who writes this blog, this is Billie's version of "Night and Day." Written by genius Cole Porter in 1932, it's been recorded many times by many folks (Ella, Sammy, Frank), and it goes like this:

Night and daaaay
You arrrre the one
Only you beneath the moonnn
or unnnder the sun

Ohhh, here come the tears again...

Thursday, January 8, 2009

i gather...

...wee, fiery bursts of bliss from other bloggers. Today, this lovely-shoed lady's entry was said-burst. Her mention of Paris makes me feel both amorous and more-than-a-little regretful that I didn't do study abroad in undergrad. I couldn't afford to travel across the mason-dixon back then, much less the atlantic. but now...

The sculptures by Petah Coyne of which she speaks (hope she doesn't mind that I stole one of the pics...I needed to give you a visual) are freakishly alluring taxidermal bouquets of living and lifeless. When i die, I want to be buried within a sculpture like this one (sans the feathered, Hitchcockian effects), topped with red roses, bits of black and cream lace, old Chapstick caps, merino wool yarn in all shades of light blue, dozens of dried Fall leaves, six locks of my own hair (clipped close to the root), and a pack of Capri Ultra Lights sprinkled throughout (for de-stressing in the afterlife).

p.s. it feels good to be back.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

hi. hello. again.

last night, i panicked. "wait, i thought it was wednesday night!?" my first thought upon reading the reminder email about my "Tuesday night" volunteer project.

When my alarm clock sounded today, i knew--even before i shook my lazy bones out of bed, that i wasn't ready. 6:30 am and a self-doubt ticker already circling my head. "What do I even wear to mentor kids? And who are these kids? They're not gonna like me. Are they teenagers? Oh no, please please don't let them be teenagers." I'm terrified of teenagers.

I'll wear all black. At least, that way, if they are teenagers, they won't tease me for being too eccentric or too plain, or for trying too hard or not trying hard enough. And perhaps I'll just blend in and become invisible and not be reduced to the wretchedness of my own teenage years all over again. And I'll wear the earrings that Maria bought me from Brazil, because I feel like less of a kid myself when I wear large earrings. *catholic-school-girl brainwashing*

So, I got dressed in my all black, pinned up my hair in slightly-messy bun à la easy-breezy authority figure, grabbed my pack of Capris, just in case I need one after the self-esteem pummeling--I mean mentoring (damnit! only ONE cig left in the pack), and onward.

Nine hours later, after my day-job, I'm walking east on 125th toward the Harlem rec center. I don't miss Harlem, and the 2 bulky, hooded guys ogling me on Lenox and 123rd reminded me why I don't miss Harlem. But, I DID pick up two bars of honey-and-apricot shea butter soap from the african vendor--so maybe I miss Harlem a tiny bit.

I'm on 122nd now and walking toward the rec center. It's a quiet, unlit street and I'm already not liking the secluded-feeling of the street I have to walk down to get to it, asking myself if I can commit to this dark, seedy walk for the next 6 months. No one would mug me just one block from a children's rec center, would they? Maybe I can find a better-lit, less seedy alternate route. I used to live here...what's happened to my fearlessness? Wait--I was never really fearless.

When I get to the center, two lady security guards have me sign in, tell me I look like one of the parents--"the chinky-eyed one," and point me through the royal blue double doors. When I get through the doors, I keep walking, slowly--not sure if I'm in the right place. I'm waiting for someone to point me further in the right direction or a big sign with an arrow that says "This Way," when Claire, our fresh-out-of-undergrad team leader cheerfully waves me into the classroom. I'm thinking "Good, she's friendly." So far, so good. An i-don't-wanna-be-here-and-i'm-not-hiding-it team leader would have prematurely ended it for me.

When the students arrive, they're high energy, expressive THIRD GRADERS. YES! No teenagers! We all sit and give introductions, and when we're asked to break into our teams, a lovely, giggly little girl named Heaven, points to me and says "I want her!" She wants me *smile*

I won't tell you about the two short stories Heaven and I wrote today (though one was about her and I becoming "best best best friends")--I want to protect the confidentiality of this young author. But I will say that we're off to a great beginning, and I will be making the walk down the dark, seedy street (or an alternate to the rec center, with the two lady security guards, the blue doors, and Claire--2x a month--to help Heaven spill her big, beautiful imagination onto notebook paper.

Oh, and she didn't care what I was wearing and didn't notice my earrings or that I wasn't quite as ready as I thought I should be. And I didn't smoke that cigarette.