Thursday, October 31, 2013

It's all my fault. I've ruined everything.

Alright, what's up this week? After the sad news on Sunday that Lou Reed died, I was ready to start fresh on Monday. But, EVERYTHING feels off. I can't seem to complete anything, my internet keeps slowing down or cutting out (Thanks, Mercury Retrograde!), and I am attracting all the crazies (Thanks, New York City!). 

A list of highlights...

1. Guilty as charged. Crazy man on 10th Avenue walks up and screams in my face, "It's all your fault. You've ruined everything!!" Yes, sir, yes it is. Yes I have.

2. I feel you Aforementioned internet problems have slowed down my already slow work process this week. To everyone waiting for a rewrite, a revision, a first draft, an email, a phone call, a "like," I apologize. As the astute stranger mentioned above, I have indeed ruined everything and it is all my fault. 

3. Cab ride from olfactory hell. Have you ever sat in a cab that smelled so badly- with a combination of body odor, vomit, farts, bad breath, and curry- that you had to ride all the way downtown with your head out the window, then spend the rest of the day phantom smelling the same smell and worrying that it stuck to you? Yes, yes I have. 

4. Conversations with the crotch toucher. Waiting for a bus that seemed hell bent on never coming, a man struck up a conversation. He seemed normal-ish, but then I realized that his pants were sort of falling down and he was sort of pulling them up by putting his hand down the front of them and moving his junk around. Literally, backed against a wall, I tried to keep ending the small talk in a polite way and finally lunged for the curb when I saw an available cab. So much for trying to break my addiction to taxi cabs/this is why I love Uber/this is why taking the bus sucks.  

5. All the other crazies. In addition to the lovely strangers mentioned in list points #1 and #4, I have had the pleasure of encountering the following in the past 3 days:

  • Woman screaming at the wall and then walking into traffic in front of me, almost getting hit by taxi, which I can only assume was the same taxi from #3
  • 3 public pissers
  • Dog park Miss LonelyHeart who couldn't wait to talk to me about her ex-boyfriend.
  • Internet stalker who regularly emails me to tell me how slutty/stupid/lame/narcissistic/unimportant I am. (Shoutout! What what!!!)
  • Mother at ballet who cornered me and told me every depressing detail of her life. I don't know her name but I know her ex-husband tried to poison her, her car broke down, she got a ticket and cried, and she regularly fights with her sisters. 

I'm done complaining now- BUT THIS ALL HAPPENED IN 3 DAYS. 3 DAYS. (Maybe the first guy put a curse on me for ruining everything?)

How's your week going? 

PS. Happy Halloween!

PPS. You're entitled to a good scare

PPPS. That one time my kid called me out for wearing "skimpy funeral clothes" in a graveyard. 

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Following the footsteps of a rag doll dance, we are entranced.

Halloween. Spooky. Mercury retrograde. Blah. 

(Atticus and I watched some Siouxsie videos earlier. He said, "Did you listen to this music when you used to take pictures in graveyards in skimpy funeral clothes?" I asked him if that was embarrassing. He raised his eyebrows and said, "What do you think?")

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

"It's Halloween, everyone's entitled to one good scare."

What's that you say? You don't like braving the night, dressed like a slutty witch/mermaid/twerking Miley/Walking Dead or Breaking Bad or Orange is the New Black character? 

Perhaps you would like to stay in and enjoy a good scare. Here are my top 13 picks for your very own Halloween-stay-at-home-and-avoid-the-drunks film festival, in no particular order. (Some of these I have mentioned before- hereherehere, and here

You can thank me later. xoxo

Monday, October 28, 2013

I'm glad I spent it with you.....

As I'm sure you've heard, Lou Reed died yesterday. And yes, I know I am one of thousands writing about him today. 

But, I can't help myself. 

The Velvet Underground, and most importantly Lou Reed, was the springboard for everything for me.  I found them accidentally. And it all started with a banana. 

In 5th grade, I became obsessed with Andy Warhol. So, I bought a copy of The Velvet Underground & Nico  at Rebel Rebel. I think I had it displayed in my room for awhile. 

Then, one day, I took it downstairs, to the record player in the living room, and put it on. It was a shitty day, as I recall, I was already experiencing the early throes of depression, and I had just finished reading this

(Which by the way, if you have never read, I highly recommend.)

So, I was looking for- something, I guess. I laid on the hardwood floor and shut my eyes and the first track began to play.....

The song washed over me in a way I had yet to experience. I was hooked. The rest of the album did not disappoint. Everything changed that day. I found something that reflected what I felt in a way I didn't know was possible. That album shaped my taste and influenced my aesthetics. I went on to fall in love with many many more V.U. and Lou Reed songs, the bulk of which were written before I was born. I have these clear, distilled moments in my life that were punctuated by these songs.

When I was 13 or 14, I was in NYC. It was Summer. It was about 100 degrees and I got in a cab, headed to Trash and Vaudeville, to no doubt buy something that made my parents cringe, and this cab driver was listening to The Velvet Underground, to Heroin. Swerving through the streets of Manhattan, sweating, with my eyes shut, listening to that song, which unfortunately reflected a lot of what was going on for me at the time* was one of those moments that still exists- you know the kind when everything else seems to stop and that moment gets to remain suspended and unaltered, forever? It was one of those. 

(*I will argue that despite their influence- this song is not why I did drugs- and it's way more than a drug song. So, if you're inclined to blame behavior on media influence- just don't.) 

Lou Reed's music has continued to punctuate my life in countless ways. Here are some of my favorites....

and of course.....

I never met the man, but his words, his music, his artistic contribution had a profound and fundamental affect on my soul. I am sad that he's gone, but happy that he has left us with indelible contributions. 

It was good what we did yesterday.
And I'd do it once again.

Thursday, October 24, 2013


John Koenig's blog project,  Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows,  captures a certain breed of modern melancholy and its many shades. Some of the words existed, some of the phrases are coined by Koenig.

He describes the project as- "A compendium of the aches, demons, vibes, joys and urges that roam the wilderness of the psychological interior. The author’s mission is to harpoon, bag and tag wild sorrows, then release them gently back into the subconscious."

Some of my personal favorites...

He made a video for this one...

His site is well worth a visit.
(also- twitter and facebook)

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Life in the hive puckered up my night.

Woke up with this in my head. 
Maybe it's seasonal.
That may make sense only to me.

Not a bad way to start the day. 
What was the last song running through your head?

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Somebody That I Used to Know

It's been 10 years ago (yesterday) since Elliott Smith died. Fuck. 

Typing that, my heart hurts. 

More than 12 years ago, Elliott and I were both "vacationing" at the same treatment facility. Rick James was there, as well. And, they're both dead. Somehow, I stayed alive. Somehow, I broke off that merry-go-round of sadness and self loathing and despair and I learned how to live.  

You know those things that you haven't thought about in awhile, they kind of lose their sharpness and then something pops up to remind you, like a 10 year death anniversary, and it all comes rushing back through you, and it stings. 

As a junkie, I've had to say goodbye to scores of people I've met/known/liked/loved over the years. When I make a mental list in my mind, it never ends. How can I begin to quantify all of that death? 

These people, some of them famous, some of them not, most of them talented, most of them leaving gaping holes behind in the threads that bind us, they were here. Their absence is unending. I guess that's the thing about death. 

I hope and I choose to believe that we go on, that we leave these bodies, these shells, behind us here, and move on a current, a current whose presence is also unending.  

Worth a read: Keep The Things You Forgot: An Elliott Smith Oral 

Some of my favorite E.S. songs...

For Elliott and Rick, Tanya, Rodney, Scott, Mike S., the other Mike S., Kim, Dylan, JJ, Pruett, Michael, Kurt, Jennifer, Shelly, Darcy, Kevin, and the unending list that is too painful to write....I hope you're at peace on the unending current of life. 

Monday, October 21, 2013

Grave Digging

Last night/this morning I had a long weird dream with multiple gravediggers in it.

It finally feels like Fall in New York City. So, yeah, it's almost Halloween. I love this time of year and I like the atmosphere and everything, but I'm not one for dressing up. 

As an adult, I can think of maybe 3 times I have donned a Halloween costume, 1 of which was "Manthrax" in 2001, which didn't go over too well- was too soon, too soon. 

You may remember my Hester Prynne costume of 2010, AKA the last time I wore a costume. 

Some people didn't get it, because nobody reads and everyone is stupid. Some people thought I was a nun. And some people thought I was an atheist pilgrim (Huh?). The best/lamest commentary I got on that one- "You should have made it 'sexy' Hester Prynne." 

Every year, dressing up sounds like a good idea- or maybe not. But, I never seem to get it together. I'm not that crafty. Maybe if I was, I would be more committed to creative costuming. But, I digress.

Beyond the annual should I bite the bullet and dress up but why so I won't mental masturbation, I also find that my dreams become Halloween themed, or at the very least eery/creepy/disconcerting, often containing serial killers/vampires/the dwarf goblin from "Don't Look Now".

No joke, every year around Halloween, the spooky-level of my dreams starts to ramp up. 

So, gravediggers. yeah, gravediggers. I have dreamt about gravediggers before. 

Is it the weather? Is it because it's Halloween? Do gravediggers have some significance? Do you think it was the mini Halloween packs of Peanut M&Ms I ate at 2 AM? Is the universe telling me to go as "sexy gravedigger" this year? Is there a Mark Lanegan connection?

According to (because clearly I do thorough research), "In a dream, a grave digger represents a person toiling in difficulties. One cannot be at peace with him until he dies. If one sees a grave digger asking about him in a dream, it means calamities for the person in question, and peace for those who will help bury him." 

Well, that doesn't sound good. So, I won't be at peace until this person dies? A little dramatic, don't you think? I'm going to chock it up to the mini Halloween Peanut M&Ms. 

PS. Always and forever my favorite Halloween song...

PPS. Are you dressing up this year?

PPPS. Do you think I should? Have a good idea for me? 

Friday, October 18, 2013

Well, you asked....

We've all been in that situation- out, in the world, around lots of people, and that stranger, at the table next to you or across the subway aisle or walking down the street, is loudly discussing personal information, either with a real live human, or nameless faceless person on the phone. 

This stranger is usually a woman and she is, more often than not, talking about a man, a man she is involved with, or used to be involved with, or wants to be involved with. This person, usually a woman, often asks questions. I would venture that 99% of the time she asks questions that she doesn't really want answered. 

Here are some examples I have heard recently in and around the streets of NYC.(I've started taking notes.)-

  • "I know that there's this bond between us. I think he's just scared. Do you think I should send him a friendly text?"
  • "Yeah, he says that they've broken up for like a month. But then, Sarah told me that they're still sleeping together. So, I don't really know. I mean, he doesn't have a reason to lie to me, so...Do you think he's lying?"
  • "He wants me to get an abortion but I just like can't do that." 
  • "I fucking hate that girl. She's so obnoxious. And I see her EVERY DAY! (friend's response- Yeah. Well, sometimes she can be cool. But, I don't have to see her every day) Yeah, well she's really fucking annoying and I don't get how like Josh is totally oblivious to what a cunt she is."
  and my personal favorite...

  • "I just want to be friends with him. It's cool. I'm over what happened. I don't understand why he just can't be normal with me. " (This was preceded by 4 subway stops worth of talking about how she wants him back.)
It takes everything in me not to chime in. WTF ladies? Didn't you learn anything from the whole He's just not that into you pop culture moment? 

And why are you always talking about how any girl that gets attention is a bitch? 

I realize that these strangers' problems are none of my business. On the other hand, you kinda make them public domain when you talk so loudly that everyone on the A train can hear you, even over the bongo guys. 

But I keep my mouth shut. And silently judge you. 

Then there are the times when you are the real live human or nameless faceless person on the phone. And that stranger is your friend. And that friend, usually a woman, is asking you questions she doesn't want answered. And then I find myself doing the "let me break the bad news to you softly" dance. But that rarely works. So sometimes you have to just hit said friend over the head with the truth. 

(clearly I am yelling out the above responses)

My point is this- well I have 2 points. 

  1. Don't talk so loud and so much, in public, around other people, who are not deaf. We will all be silently judging you. 
  2. Stop asking questions or sorting through your emotional baggage with your friends if you don't wan't to hear the truth. 
  3. And yes, I have a 3rd point- Whatever you do- don't sort through your emotional baggage with a man who has seen you naked or with whom you have hopes of seeing you naked.