Monday, October 31, 2005

confessions of a 30-year old drama queen

have a breakdown, but by God, look fabulous doing it...

difficulties show men what they are.

i wrote this on a post-it in purple metallic marker and stuck it on my computer monitor last week when i was weathering one of the many mini-breakdowns about my show that has, in the past week, seemed to be falling spectacularly to pieces...3 or 4 or 5 times.

if what epictetus says is true, i are a drama queen who weeps first, eats chocolate second, and then feels like a big ol' dork when everything turns out just fine.

the aforeblogged projector breakdown is just one example in a long line. i suppose i must accept this as just one of the (many) flaws of my character. i am a drama queen who does not clean, does not write timely thank you notes, and has not committed her neighborhood recycling schedule to memory. this drama queen business can be awfully taxing but it sure makes for damn fine entertainment. makes for damn fine pre-40 heart attacks and stomach ulcers too.

today's drama: who woke up with a stuffy nose and sore throat this morning?

the same person whose show opens saturday night who never gets sick.

brilliant. i couldn't write this stuff.

Friday, October 28, 2005

turns out...

it wasn't the projector, it was just premenstrual me.

it works. it works just fine. persnickety in the sense in that the correct plug must go into the correct outlet in order for it to operate.

details, details, details...

a premenstrual me and a projector

Tears, Snot, and Self-Pity on the prowl.

the projector is not working, and i am trying not to explode. the projector that is absolutely essential to my show for the 100+ projections does not seem to be recognizing the "signal" from my computer. is it a Mac/PC thing? i do not know...i am too busy trying to not completely lose my merde.

too late...i already did.

Tears, Snot, and Self-Pity arrived at around 10pm last night in a flourish - skirts bustling and freshly spritzed perfume in the air, they greeted me with an aggressive kiss-kiss, bruising my cheeks with bright red Revlon Cherries-in-the-Snow lipstick, and settled down for the night. they drank all my vodka, ate all my chocolate, and used up a whole roll of toilet paper. Tears and Snot snuck out in the middle of the night, but Self-Pity is hanging on for one last hurrah. (she suffers from that same sense of self-importance all double-namers do. i was named twice, therefore i must be doubly divine and deserving.) she likes to sit around and gloat in the morning light, pointing out my puffy eyes and recounting the details of my self-created drama like a teenager might those of of The O.C. damn her.

she's a real pain in the ass, but if she can figure out how the hell to work this projector, she can stick around as long as she likes.

Thursday, October 27, 2005

a man who can idolize my thighs, is a man i can love.

run, (or whatever the equivalent of running would be online) don't singer/songwriter ethan lipton's website and download my new favoritest song i like your thighs:

i like your thighs in the fatty position
sitting upon a wall

spread out so wide and all

they touch

i know you do not think it's flattering

but it really rings my bell

i like your thighs in the fatty position.


then, once you've started to feel better about your dreaded "thigh spread," click on let's go to mars, and just feeeeeeeeeeeeel good. makes me want to take my sleeping bag and a big thermos of almond tea out back and sleep underneath the stars.

let's go to mars
let's fly away
let's build a new hoome
this one is rotting. shhh...

let's go to mars
children can pay
they get allowance
at least i know i did.

and jesus will meet us with chili and a spoon
and take us on side trips to the moon.

his music is the best first you giggle to yourself and think,

oh, this is funny and light and silly.

then after you let it settle and sit for a sec you think,

oh, this is profound and pretty and probably true.

sorta like some boys i know.

anyhoodle...check it out.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Friday, October 21, 2005

blue mascara lovingkindness

what? don't you think it looks natural?

i rec'd this email in response to one that i sent out about my show from my absolutely fabulous friend, mother, wife, and woman in posession of the most symphonic snorting laugh on the planet, r.

I have thought things through and decided that b/c you were the first person to put blue mascara on me, I owe you.

Seriously, I need to get away so my sister and I are planning a trip to NYC to see your opening show. I have an Uncle and Cousin in the city so I'm all cared for I just wanted to make sure I got to hug your neck and buy you a drink or something. I'm sure it will be a crazy weekend for you so I plan on being a very low maintenace friend. Anyway, things are not set in stone just because my sister has not purchased her ticket yet. I will email when our plans are final. Love You and praying for you, I know the show will be amazing! r.

first of all, i'm not sure that she owes me. i think i might owe her. blue mascara? yikes. but then, that's the thing about r. she is one of those people that is just good, sees the good, does the good. i have to try to be good. r. doesn't. she just is unconditionally good and kind. it oozes out of her pores, this goodness, and even when she was woopin' it up, sneakin' out, drinkin', drivin', and doin' other dirty deeds in high school, that goodness was apparent b/c of course, goodness is not really about how many wine coolers you drink or what you do with the boy in the treehouse, it's how kindly you treat the skinny kid with the lazy eye who smells like canned tuna.

she told me then (i think we were drunk and waxing philosophical) that what she really wanted was to be "when she grew up" was a mom, wife, and Christian counselor.

whaaaaaa??? i thought, as i took another sip of my bourbon and coke. (we were in college at this point so we'd graduated to the hard stuff. mine being in mississippi; we all drank bourbon.)

i thought she was crazy, but who's the doof? here she is 10 years later: mother, wife and Christian counselor. don't roll your eyes, you cynical pagan, you (and i can say that b/c i'm a cynical pagan too). she's not one of those poseur Christians who espouse to be, but clearly do not act as if. i personally don't do the whole Christian bit; i celebrate Christmas, i get teary-eyed whenever i hear Silent Night sung by a chorus of 5-year olds, and i dig a church potluck as much as the next gourmande, but beyond that i'm not buying the whole Jesus is the Savior ad campaign. i do, however, respect and am maybe even a little bit envious of the faith that r. so strongly believes and lives in. r. gives Christianity a good name. it's just a shame that it's Tammy Faye's face that is emblazoned on our minds like a Mary Kay Shroud of Turin.

to give you an even better idea of how highly i think of r: whenever it came time to nominate people for Homecoming Court in high school, i always nominated her. every year, without fail, i'd scribble her name on a little piece of paper and pass it up to the front of homeroom. i desperately wanted to be on the court myself, but figured if anyone deserved a tiara it was her. a tiara is a kind of halo, after all. better, i think. it's more sparkly, and it has those little combs that hold it in place.

so glad you're coming r. i'll prep the mascara.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

thanks be to jesus...

...beignets are back!

the south shall rise again! (and so will their cholesterol).

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

a hairy, i mean, happy family

the 70s was all about hair...bad hair.

my dad, mom, and brothers circa 1973 P.M. (pre-moi).

not sure who the animal perching on my mother's head belongs to, but i will never again feel guilty about letting my roots go for a few months.

Monday, October 17, 2005

addendum to a little (okay, a lot) bubbly

how do you think they made the bubbles?

someone, a fella presumably, anonymously commented re' the previous post about my recent bout with indigestion:

Well there goes my romantic notions...

in reponse:

1. first of takes zero cojones to post anonymously. show your face, little man!

2. if you're that easily put off...good riddance. who needs a guy who's so squeamish? if you can't handle gas, whaddya gonna do when she births a watermelon-sized child through an orifice that's roughly the size of a lemon?

3. you have these issues too, i'd imagine, and i'll bet you've woken up past girlfriends with your little odiferant symphonies in the middle of the night. did she say anything? nooooo. she may have even found it charming in a very endearing, oh-look-how-comfortable-he-is-around-me, human way. you know that little bottle of Gas-x that serendipitously appeared in the medicine cabinet right next to your unromantic nose-hair clipper? not serendipitous - a fully conscious act of unconditonal love and concern for your digestive health.

3. newsflash, guy...GIRLS FART. we also do far more disgusting things, but i won't go into that now. don't want to topple all of your female fantasies in one day...just keep believing that we're odorless, hairless, non-excretory, all-natural blondes, whose morning breath smells of honeysuckle, and who really do enjoy hearing all about your fantasy football games and listening to you play "stairway to heaven" for the 400th time on the guitar you've had since college.

Sunday, October 16, 2005

a little (okay, a lot) bubbly

a saturday repast of seafood quesadilla + sugar-free taffy (saccharin-sweetened rubber the body understandably does not recognize as food)= 24 hours of bloating and yes, gas. someone popped a cork of champagne in my bowel.

yes. yes, i did. i went there.

happy sunday.

Friday, October 14, 2005

cinnamon-flavored charity drizzled with icing

World's largest cinnamon roll baked for charity

wanted: fun

are we having fun yet?

"i'm boooooooooored."

"then you must be a boring person."

such was a frequent dialogue between my mother and i as a child. i'm sure i was surrounded by a bevy of toys, 8,000 books, and 200 computer games, but i still managed to be booooooored frequently. a case of saturation, i guess. it can come across as somewhat Mommy Dearest-est, but i assure you my mum was as unlike that arch-browed, hanger-wielding nutjob as anyone could be. she meant it in a pull-yourself-up-by-your-rainbow-mork 'n' mindy suspenders-ya-gotta-make-your-own-sunshine-kinda way.

it certainly worked. holy shit! i don't want to be a boring person! let's sell my art work on the street corner!

i kinda feel that way now. booooooooored. ironic, isn't it? considering how much i have going, show, work, show, work, but see, them's there the problem, i think. see the variety? work, show, work, show, work, show. of course you don't. there isn't any. more variety in a plateful of macaroni sans poudre du fromage*.

i need a little variety. a little balance. a little tabasco. a little sumthin-sumthin'. i need human connection. i need to laugh so hard vodka martini comes flying out my nose. i need to dance and swing my head around and around so many times while live music thumps in the background that i'm sore in the morning. i need to kiss someone i'm not sure i like, but definitely think is cute on a street corner in the rain. i need...i need...i need...FUN, goshdarnit!

does anyone have a good recipe?


in an effort to create a little of my own fun this fall/winter (b/c apparently, Fresh Direct does not deliver), here's my list of things to do this fall:

1. read every eensy bit of poetry i can get my paws on and go to poetry slams. i realize, that to some of you, this is tantamount to Hell on Earth, but poetry makes me feel connected in a way that nothing else can. to read a Jane Kenyon or Sharon Olds poem in bed, by candlelight, is to know that you are not alone. and yes, smartass, i find it FUN.

2. go to at least one barefoot boogie a month. yes, there are a bunch of new agey folks in batik pants, wavin' their underarm hair proudly, and that's not quite my scene, but the music is diverse and you can dance yourself silly. i'm sort of anonymous there, so i can be as bizarre as i like, which is always a plus.

3. once i catch up on rent (ugh), i shall procure myself a pair of Dansko red patent leather clogs. fun...on your feet, and comfy to boot!

4. i shall have a people over for a chili dinner (Havana Moon Chili and a veggie version), we will carve lascivious designs into unsuspecting pumpkins, drink beer, and nibble on ginger chocolate chunk cookies.

that's about all the fun-planning i can handle for one day...please, suggestions welcome.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

say cheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeese.

my favorite pic

took publicity shots for my show this past saturday. i know i'm a performer/attention whore, but i actually hate getting my picture taken. not true. i don't mind getting the photo taken, it's the looking at it afterwards i abhor. i have this strange fear that i'm going to discover some flaw in my body or visage that i've failed to notice during my daily grooming process, and here i've been walking around thinking i'm perfectly normal, when really, no one can stop staring at my giant hump back, whispering...does she know she has that? she can't possibly know, otherwise she'd be wearing a burka.

you know what i mean tho. those times you've looked at photos of yourself, and sometimes, you're pleasantly surprised:

wow. i don't have a double chin.

that new lip venom gloss does make my lips look like Claudia Schiffer's.

but then, there are those other times, you've looked at photos of yourself, and you are horrified:

why didn't anyone tell me my new dye job makes my hair look like cotton batting?

cottage cheese...good with strawberries and bananas. not so good on thighs in a swimsuit.

but then, i guess that, in and of itself is a healthy process. if you can, of course, look at yourself, pseudo-objectively, see the imperfections (the slight, skewed underbite that my braces didn't correct that shoves my chin a little to the left, my ample belly that looks practically pregnant, my father-was-a-pro-linebacker shoulders) and love yourself anyway. okay, let's be realistic. accept yourself. loving myself is sometimes just a wee too ambitious. like certain people. i might not loooove them, but i accept them. hating them just takes up way to much energy.

god...what could i have been, done, etc. if i hadn't spent so much energy on this body perfection obsession?

sheesh. that's a whole other post, and i just don't have the energy.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

4 random thoughts

1. my toenails painted sunday. purple. can't decide whether they remind me more of grape kool-aid or a corpse. seeing as how i'm trying lately to live by the philosophy that "happiness is a choice," i'm gonna go with grape kool-aid. if you catch me sucking my toes later, you'll know why. thirsty.

2. had the best latte ever yesterday. available at joe. expensive as all hell...$3.95 for a large (what starbucks would call a "tall"), but absolutely worth it. they even drizzle a little fleur de lis type thingy on top w/ the foam. then, walk to union square, buy a scone at the farmer's market, and enjoy it while soaking in the delightfully chilly autumn air. if you're feeling particularly indulgent, get it made with whole milk. fatty fatty fatty (five weight watchers points!), but winter's coming. gotta stay warm somehow...

3. from a profile on Joan Didion in the New York Times Book Review this last Sunday:

In a commencement address at the University of California, Riverside, in 1975, Didion offered a general imperative that still illuminates her own disposition, even in the darkest times: "I'm not telling you to make the world better, because I don't think that progress is necessarily part of the package," she said. "I'm just telling you to live in it. Not just to endure it, not just to suffer it, not just to pass through it, but to live in it. To look at it. To try to get the picture. To live recklessly. To take chances. To make your own work and take pride in it. To seize the moment. And if you ask me why you should bother to do that, I could tell you that the grave's a fine and private place, but none I think do there embrace. Nor do they sing there, or write, or argue, or see the tidal bore on the Amazon, or touch their children. And that's what there is to do and get it while you can and good luck at it."

4. getting publicity for a show is hard when you want to remain true.

Sunday, October 09, 2005

a silly, glittery autumnal reminiscence

yesterday, i had to pull my purple rain slicker out of its summer hibernation. it was the first unofficial rainy fall day in nyc. thanks be to jesus! it's gettin' chilly, the leaves are a changin', and i have an insatiable craving for chili and cableknit wool sweaters. (not eating the sweaters, wearing them, silly.) yippeee!!! autumn is my season.

i slipped my hand into the side pocket. my hand discovered a smooth plastic container of banana-strawberry flavored lipgloss...with sparkles. i immediately remembered when i bought it: two novembers ago, at the beginning of what would prove to be a very short-lived, though fire-in-the-belly-movie-moments-are-made-of-this, romance. at the time, i thought it might be funny, charming, reminiscent of junior high Lip Smackers moments, for him to discover that kiddie candy sweet on my lips. tee hee hee. i don't recall him ever noticing the taste, but i do remember looking up from one of street corner embraces, and discovering that i had littered his face glitter.

funny. he didn't seem to mind.

there are worse things, i suppose.

tee. hee. hee.

Friday, October 07, 2005

strange fruit

i ain't gonna lie. i've been a big ol' honkin' ball of stress as of late. tension ooooooozing outta my pores...manifesting itself as zits and a sallow complexion. my left eye a throbbing sunburst of pulsating twitch and redness. this little reptilian o' angst slithers down my neck and latches on to my left shoulder blade and squeeeeeeeeeeeeeeezes with all its might 'til i am reduced to tears in my shower bathing with Johnson & Johnson lavender-scented baby bath "for fussy babies." ahem...fussy adults, thank you very much.

it's fun!

but here's the thing i realized the other day - Yours Truly is the creator of all this hooha. this perceived stress is just that...perceived. i'm just fine. the show's in just dandy shape for where we are (one month out). i have a fabulous publicist. i have an amaaaaazing director. i might have a donated LCD projector (I LOVE YOU GARY SILBER and LAVONNE BRUCKNER!!!). i've got a sound designer, and you no doubt saw the body forms that are slowly taking shape, stuffed and wrapped and fortified by my rock star set designer. i'm fucking blessed. my sweet, generous friend A. is sending she a scheisseload of sparkly MAC products too. so why all the stress? why all the angst? why all the drama?

habit, my lovelies. pure habit. i mean, there certainly are legitimate stressors in doing this show, but truthfully, i think most of my stress isn't even coming from the show, but other crap...personal things, silly personal 12-year old things that i shouldn't even be entertaining right now. and the stuff that does have to do with the show is the schtuff i can't control so, of course, by my very nature, i'd like nothing more than to tackle it, wash its mouth out with soap, and send it to its room.

ain't happening.

so...the other night, as i lay in bed, begging for the morning to come b/c i just couldn't bear another sleepless night, mind racing, a prepubescent troop of Boy Scouts practicing their knotting technique at the base of my neck...i recalled reading about something called "treeing." here's the deal - a tribe in africa has a "worry tree." whenever anyone in the village is worrying about something - particularly something they can't control - they hang their worry on the tree to let the gods take care of it. a kind of prayer. a release. a "i really cannot fix this right now. do you mind? thanks a bunch. i'm off to go do what i really need to do. ta!"

i 'treed' a few things:

and, oh

...a few people...

that one...
that one...
and oh yeah! that one.

a few self-destructive ideas...

you're getting fatter by the minute, lookit them cheeks.
no one's gonna come to this show.
no one's gonna "get" this show.
you're wasting all of your time on this show.

them's some doozies, but i did it. know what? i slept better than i have all week. now, you should know that a couple of those monkeys kept leaving their perch and hopping onto my back throughout the day, but i just continued to
ever so gently toss 'em back up into my imaginary arboretum overhead. tho there was one that i had to shackle to the branch.

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

i'm building wings, people, i'm building wings.

If we listened to our intellect we'd never have a love affair, we'd never have a friendship, we'd never go into business, because we'd be cynical. Well that's just nonsense! You've got to jump off the cliff all the time and build wings on the way down. ~Ray Bradbury

i like this one much better.

tuesday morning dose of misogyny

disturbing as all hell, but i can't. stop. watching.

i was shown this by a guy at work. funny - our different reactions.

me:"oh my god! this is so disturbing! she's clearly dead! what does this mean? it's some sort of misogynistic commentary on women by some asshole who's girlfriend just broke up with him. this is her dead...bouncing through eternity. oh, my god. it's awful. (meanwhile, eyes still glued to the screen as she slips through another pair of bubbles.)

guy: "i just thought it was cool."

btw, you can use your cursor to toss her around. doubly creepy.

Sunday, October 02, 2005

sunday serendipity

salvaged this mirror on the way home from a long afternoon walk. perhaps a leftover from a closing irish pub? don't know. found it a eerily appropriate directive after the weekend of moping and self-pity i've indulged in.

make it. sometimes it's just that simple

friends. above and beyond the call of duty

do you know what good friends do?

they spend their entire saturday night in a NYC studio apartment listening to the concert version of Les Miserables alternately wrapping others or allowing themselves to be wrapped really really really tightly in duct tape from just below their bum up to their neck. not just once...twice.


then, having a pair of cold scissors edge their way up from the base of their bum, snip-snip-snipping through the cast, uncomfortably close to the skin. the cast then peeled, tugged, wrangled away from their oxygen-starved body. any tape that may accidentally snag the skin leaves big blue-red welts, and baby hairs that once delicately floated above shoulders are unmercifully ripped out when the cast comes off.


not some strange weight-loss ritual, no. we were making the dress forms for my show size ate. which, of course you're going to come and see it so you'll know what i mean when you see these suckers on stage, riiiiiiigghhhht?

it's an interesting thing to see your form 3 dimensionally, hanging on a hanger in the doorway of a kitchen. we're always used to seeing ourselves in one dimension - in the mirror. so when you see your body there, suspended in midair next to your friend's, you can't help but have a moment of "so that's what i look like."

ehhh. not so bad. not so great either. human maybe?

it wasn't an altogether harrowing experience. probably helped that i was in a room with all of my friends going thru the same thing and, like me, their bod's are imperfectly perfect too. all different shapes and sizes - r's charming petite hourglass; k's abundant bosom; j's eensy weensy waist and perfect breasts; my broad, strong shoulders narrow waist, and even narrower hips. (i look like mary lou retton, if mary lou retton were about 2 feet taller.)

there was, of course, the requisite body bashing you'll find in any room of women standing around in their underwear:

oh, i have a sway back.

ugh. i hate my belly.

ew. my butt is huge. can you make it smaller with tape?

but, all in all we were pretty gentle on ourselves, and for all the welts, ripped out hair, and oxygen deprivation, it was a fun evening. definitely surreal. i can honestly say i'll probably never spend another saturday night in nyc, underwear-less, turning like a jewelry box ballerina as i'm being wrapped in white duct tape by one of my best friends, zero circulation in my legs, sipping a vodka gimlet, and singing along with Jean Valjean.

God on high, hear my prayer...


mostly, i think the evening made us exceedingly grateful that the corset has gone the way of so many other painful beauty conventions - foot binding, leeching (for that lovely pale color the Medieval maidens dug so much), the feathered bang.

Saturday, October 01, 2005

margaritas + mary tyler moore

sometimes i wonder what all the work is for. i mean, i work, i struggle to change my "bad habits" that are keeping me from growing and living fully. i think i've done so much work. i think of come so far. i feel, for a very brief moment, like Mary Tyler Moore tossing her 70s chapeau into the air, carelessly, fearlessly, but with a strong sense of certainty that that hat is going to come down precisely where i want it to - into my well-manicured little hands. it's not gonna veer off all willy-nilly and smack some unknown bystander in the face or land in a pile of poodle doo. no. for a second, i feel in control.

then, i don' t know what happens.




i eat the chocolate in the work candy dish even though i know it will not reduce my stress, but only exacerbate it, my skin, and my I.B.S. gurgle, gurgle, gurgle...blech.

i still....can' Certain Person...the same Certain Person i talked to freely and easily the day before,, (why!?! i do not know.) i am rendered mute. cat-got-my-tongue, hairball in throat, can't even look person in the eye. helen keller had better social skills than i. i will end up old, alone, toothless, surrounded by cats, and little cut crystal bowls of 14-year old Brach's hard candies, watching my Latin soaps with the closed-captioning on while listening to Celine Dion's My Heart Will Go On.

i continue continue continue to look for approval outside of myself. will the boss approve of my work? will He say "hi?" will The Other One call? will They like the show? will my jeans fit the way i want them to? if the answer, on a particular day, to any of these questions is a "no," whoa, nelly. get thee away. i descend into an abyss of self-hatred and goo that i thought was reserved only for Really Bad People...people like saddam hussein or people who wear stirrup pants or people who shop at Wal-Mart.

i find myself at midnight on a Friday night, post-Margaritas, sitting Indian-style on my kitchen floor, weeping, hating myself so forcibly i think i might vomit, and maybe, i think, this is the answer. getting It out. vomiting it out. the bad stuff. but i don't. no bulimic will be born tonite. there's another voice inside me that's countering The Fran Drescher Hate Voice, and since i've "done all this work" The Toni Morrison Love Voice has gotten a little louder, (or maybe i'm just listening now?)

growth is not easy, chickadee. you're gonna fail. you're gonna trip. these dance steps are new. it's gonna take a little while for you to catch on. you've been doin' the waltz for years. it'll take some time to perfect the watoosie.

dammit. "i want it NOOOOOOOW, daddy!"

mom always said, "you'll feel better in the morning," and of course i do. i sorta feel stupid now about Sobfest: September 2005, but i also know i needed it. i've been holding It in all week, i needed to get It out, and with the aid of two very tasty frozen margaritas, i did. and, The Truth is so much more visible in the morning light. The Truth is...i have grown a lot...i have done a shitload of work on myself...i have come a long way, baby...but that doesn't mean, Margrocks, that it's gonna be a flawless execution every time. life is messy. i mean many takes do you think it took for Mary T. to get her hat thrown juuuuuust right?

my guess is many.


4:35 pm addendum...i feel like such an ass...a bombing in bali, and i'm whining about my weeny little probs...ugh. my apologies. on an up note, i bought a new bra. i might not be able to lift my spirits, but the least i can do is lift my breasts.