Saturday, December 31, 2005

So I thought about writing a long, blithery entry about all of the things I've done in the last year and how much I've grown and what I want to accomplish in the next year and so on and so forth, but then I thought better of it. If you want to know most of that stuff, you can go back and read the archives. But I will say this:

I like where I am in my life right now. I'm scared about what the next year will bring, mostly from a financial perspective, but I know that things always work themselves out one way or another. I like my apartment. I'm glad I'm still in my little neighborhood. I have some really wonderful friends and a beautiful family that I am beyond grateful for. I have a lot still to do and it's going to be tough, but I'm not the sort to back away from a challenge. So wish me luck!

And I wish you all luck in the new year, too. I wish you happiness and health and cake. No matter what anyone says, cake is good for you. And no matter what you happen to have planned for this evening, please be safe. Nobody has anything that they have to do tomorrow, so if you need to crash somewhere and go ahead and crash. A little embarrassment is much easier to deal with than a potentially fatal car accident.

Happy new year!

Friday, December 30, 2005

Hello, Oman and Egypt (is that you, Mr. Doughty?)! We now officially have Africa, without the Saudi Penninsula location debate, we have Africa. So people on six different continents have stopped by to read the blitherings I put up here on a daily basis. Thanks, guys! I'm a little overwhelmed, but mostly I just think it's really cool that y'all come buy to visit. I hope you enjoy your stay.

And speaking of Mr. Doughty, I'm really wishing I could talk to him for a minute, so I'm going to post this in here. If he ever reads it, I don't know what he'll think. I don't think he'll probably even ever read it, but I'm going to post it anyway.

For those of you who don't know, I'm talking about Mike Doughty who is an amazing musician and from what I can tell, a pretty cool person, too. He used to be the lead singer of Soul Coughing and when they broke up he did the solo thing for a while and then recently signed on to Dave Matthew's label and released "Haughty Melodic," which I voted for in the WXRT listner poll as being one of the best albums of 2005. It really is fantastic and I would very much recommend you go pick up a copy if you don't already have one. There's only one song on the whole album that I'm not crazy in love with. Some of them make you want to dance, some of them have amazing harmonies tha I get to sing along with, and the last song on the album is really sweet and touching. So yeah, if you don't have it yet, please go get it. It really is fantastic.

Mr. Doughty also keeps a journal on his website and I've read it and while not quite Moby calibur (have to keep my obsessions straight, here. tee hee), it is pretty good. He posts a lot of interesting photographs, which is fun. One time, he ganked some concert photos from a guy I did a film with. As in, a guy I made a movie with went to a Mike Doughty concert and took some photos, posted them online, Mr. Doughty found them (or was sent a link) and posted them on his own website, crediting the guy I know, of course. Sort of a cyber two-degrees-of-separation. Man, I'm a dork when I first wake up in the morning. Sorry.

Anyway, there are several entries wherein Mr. Doughty talks about his growing dislike of Soul Coughing music. Like he looks down on fans who come up to him now and tell him how much they loved those tunes. He says when he listens to them, all he can hear is how he should have made them differently. That bothers me quite a bit, so I'm going to get up on my high horse for just a brief moment.

Hi, Mr. Doughty. I have recently become quite a big fan of yours. I think the music you make is amazing and interesting and poignant and fun. I haven't been able to stop listening to your records as of late. I'm so happy for you that you feel like "Haughty Melodic" is the record you have always wanted to make, the record that you have spent your whole career trying to make. That's wonderful that you made that and I agree with you; it is an amazing record. I'm not too keen on "Tremendous Brunettes," but the rest of it is so beautiful.

It saddens me, though, that not only do you not feel a connection with your older works anymore, but you seem to look down on fans who do. I know that when you made those records, you were a different person with different things going on in your life and it is fine to want to distance yourself from that time and place. But at least for me, Soul Coughing songs remind me of my engagment. Crazy as it was, I look back on that whole thing very fondly. And another Soul Coughing song reminds me of my first love and how oddly he danced. I can't help but smile when I hear it. I love that those songs bring back those memories, and because they do, the songs mean just as much to me as the memories do. So it kind of hurts when you talk about how awful "Disseminated" is -- that is probably my favorite. It makes me want to put together a huge lindy/hip hop fusion dance because it has so many layers and so many styles all wrapped up in one song. It's brilliant. But when you say it's awful, that makes me feel dumb for liking it.

It's kind of like when Cat Stevens became Yusif Islam and took back every song he ever wrote, saying he didn't mean any of it. I was heartbroken. We used to sing the songs from Harold and Maude on school bus trips, and they always reminded us that there is some beauty somewhere. They reminded me that as ugly and depressed as I felt, I still had the potential to be something else. "If you want to sing out, sing out." Made it not matter that my brother didn't think I could sing; I was going to sing anyway. These were the anthems that got me through my depression and encouraged me to keep living and then the author comes out and says he didn't mean any of them? Did that mean people really didn't like it when I sang out? That my voice wasn't valid? Sure felt like it.

I came to peace with the Cat Stevens thing. I am determined to believe that when he wrote those songs he meant them, at least a little bit. Or that he knew what kind of music people wanted or needed to hear and he wrote it for them. I know what those songs mean to me and while it still hurts that they don't mean anything to him, I am going to hold on to my love for that music.

Same thing with your older stuff, Mr. Doughty. I'm sorry if it pains you to hear that "Soft Serve" or "Bus to Beelzebub" or "Circles" or "Disseminiated" are amazing songs that mean a lot to me. But they are. I hope that one day, you can at least appreciate the fact that you touched people with those songs, even if the songs weren't what you wanted them to be. I think it is evident in the number of Rockity Roll robot tattoos you've encountered that I'm not the only one who thinks your catalog is great. Please let us continue to enjoy your music, all of it. Because you know we will anyway.

Okay, I'm done now.

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Oh, and as long as we're putting things out into the universe in the hopes that they come true, a new Taylor acoustic electric guitar would be fabulous. Or the three thousand dollars to buy one. Either or. I'm not picky.

So even my mother can tell that I'm ready to date someone. Someone amazing. She's picturing Luke from Gilmore Girls. Not that I have anything against Luke, but I'm kind of crushing on Dean right now. Not the actor that plays Dean, mind you, but the character of Dean. Such a prince charming. Calling Rory by her full name, but only when it's sexy. Going to a dance he doesn't want to go to because he knows she wants to. *sigh*

I got this new assistant director position for a show out in the suburbs and already everyone I've met who is involved in the show is married. I know there are great men out there. My mother and I are convinced I'm going to find one someday. I just hope he's not married when I do.
Hi, Germany.

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

For the record, I am not going to get anything important accomplished over my "winter vacation" (aka, week off of work), because my brother, lovely human being that he is, gave me the first season of Gilmore Girls on DVD. Granted, I asked for it. Literally. But I don't think he knew I would spend entire days camped out in front of my television watching the Gilmores and all of their adventures and such. Watching Gilmore Girls, drinking tea (thanks to my lovely Texas friend -- thank you! It's delicious!), eating cake and Chex Mix (homemade vegan version by my dad) and Russian tea cakes (also vegan, also made by my dad). I'm going to gain 8,000,000 pounds because you can't watch Gilmore Girls without eating something. They eat so much strange stuff on the show that if you don't eat while you're watching it, you feel like you're only getting half of the show. So I'm sitting here, eating and watching Gilmore Girls and gaining 8,000,000 pounds in the process, all thanks to my lovely brother.

Thank you, lovely brother.

Much love,
Your whale of a sister

Monday, December 26, 2005


So how was it? Did y'all have fun? Did ya get a lot of good stuff?

I had a lovely holiday. It's nice to not go into the holidays resenting them; it makes getting through the whole thing that much easier, and that much more enjoyable. I really did have fun. And I got some really nice things that I wanted, a couple that I didn't really, and one that was about eight years too late, but all in all, I think it was a good year. My family and friends seemed to like the gifts I got for them, too. So yeah. I may try this "not hating Christmas" thing again next year.

Okay, gotta run. Have a lovely day!

Friday, December 23, 2005

Hi, Portugal and Saudi Arabia! Welcome to the party!

So I'm not sure how much time I'm going to be spending on the interweb in the next week or so because I won't be at work. I do have access at home, it's just a matter of how much time am I going to want to spend online versus how much time am I going to want to spend, I dunno, with friends and family and cleaning my house and all that stuff. So in the spirit of being non-technological, I'm going to talk for a minute about Christmas today.

Yup, I said the "c" word. Christmas.

I grew up celebrating Christmas. I still celebrate Christmas, whether or not I buy into the religion that invented the holiday. It is, for the most part, a very nice time of year, and I have so many traditions surrounding the holiday that I just wouldn't feel right not celebrating Christmas. I apologize if that offends anyone. That is not my intent. I'm sure you have your own traditions surrounding Ramadan or Hannukah or the solstice or Kwanzaa or whatever holiday you choose to celebrate, and I hope you have a really nice time participating in those traditions.

One of the things that I really like about Christmas is that it is a time of year to be nice to each other. To put other crap aside and let your family and friends know that you love them. It's kind of sad that we need a yearly reminder to tell our family and friends that we love them, but we do. We get busy with all kinds of other crap and the simple act of being nice to each other escapes us. So I would like to take this opportunity to say thank you. Thank you guys for visiting my site on whatever sort of schedule you do -- whether this is your first visit or your daily check. Thank you especially to those of you who are of a different mind than I about whatever, for continuing to read. Thank you for the occasional notes you send me to let me know I'm not alone in the world. Thank you for your seemingly endless support. In short, thank you for being you. You make my life brighter and I am so honored to be a part of yours.

Whether you choose to light candles next week, or sing around a tree, or go eat Chinese food and see a movie, I hope you have a truly wonderful time with the people you love. Be safe and have a very Merry Christmas.

Thursday, December 22, 2005

Is that Malaysia? The borders over there are kind of strange, but I think it's Malaysia, not Thailand. Either way, hello and welcome!

Y'all are going to make my head swell up so big I can't fit in the door. I hope you realize this.
So did everyone have a lovely solstice yesterday? If for no other reason, I think we should all celebrate it because it means the days are going to get longer from here on out. At least until June. And that's good news. More daylight! Yay! Warmer temperatures! Yay! It is actually warmer in Chicago today than it has been for a long time. I left my apartment this morning in balmy 20 degree weather. It felt pretty good, actually.

So yeah. Hooray for longer days. Winter won't last forever...

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Hi, Japan! That makes six continents -- North America, South America, Europe, Australia, Africa, Asia. Unless the United Arab Emirates is not Africa, then we're only at five. But still, that's pretty sweet!

And hello, France! I think that's a different person, though, because it is somewhere else in France than it was before. Unless it is the same person who has moved. In which case, welcome to your new home.
So the New York Transit Strike. I feel like I should say something about it, but I'm not exactly sure what to say. I don't live there. I don't work for the MTA or any sort of union. All I know is what I have read about it. It looks like the average TWU Union worker (or whatever their proper name is) earns more money than I do, has a pretty sweet benefits package that they don't pay for, and gets to retire at age 55. Granted, it is more expensive to live in New York than it is to live in Chicago, but that still looks like a pretty sweet deal to me. I can understand that they would be upset about changes to that system. But paying 2% of your own health benefits is not that big of a deal. It's not a huge expense. And bumping the retirement age to 62 for new hires (not for people already in the system) brings the TWU a little closer to the national average. So the changes would really only impact people joining the TWU now or in the future. So the people striking are looking out for fellow employees that they haven't met yet. That's kind of sweet. But wait, they're shutting down a city during the holidays. Making it so that friends can't make it to their friend's holiday parties, or might choose not to so as to avoid big cab fares or long walks in frigid weather. Making it difficult for people to finish their last minute shopping. I know, I know, we shouldn't procrastinate, but we all do. I've heard of unions who wanted to strike before, but out of good faith, to keep the world running at close to normal levels, they will only strike for a day, or they will delay a strike until, say, the end of the school year so that kids can still graduate. It seems kind of malicious to me for the TWU to strike now. I'm guessing that was the point. And that bothers me.

Not to mention the fact that public employees are not allowed to strike in New York. So the very fact that they are striking means they are criminals. Apparently the union got slapped with a one-million-dollar-a-day fine for the duration of the strike that they are appealing. Hey, you illegally shut down a city and expect no consequences? Do you live in the real world?

The individual workers can be fined up to two days pay for each day they stay on strike. That's a lot of money. Money I bet they can't afford at the holiday time. Which makes me think that this has to be about something more. I know some of the picketers were carrying "We move you. Respect us" signs. They must feel really bad about they way they are treated to surrender two days pay for each day they stay on strike, and to organize a strike at this time of year. If I may play devil's advocate for a minute, though, whatever happened to just doing your job? We, as a society do tend to look down on certain professions, yes. Particularly blue collar professions. But there are plenty of blue collar workers who live comfortable lives. They make a good wage (thanks to their unions), they have decent benefits. Hell, there are even homeless people who bring in over $40,000/year panhandling. They know they are panhandlers, though. They don't demand respect. They know they have a tasteless job, but it pays the bills, so they keep doing it. Telemarketers, too. Is it really worth shutting down a city so that people will say "Thank you" from time to time? I don't know. I'm guessing it has to be a LOT more complicated than that, and like I said, I'm not a union member, I don't live in New York, and I don't know first hand what their work conditions are like. I do know that when I was just there, I saw an ad on the subway advertising for maintenance workers for the MTA and it looked like a pretty sweet deal to me. I know I would come home covered in oil, and I'd have to put in strange hours, and I would probably smell like exhaust for the rest of my life, but if that's what I had to do to pay the bills...

I dunno. I don't know what to say about the strike other than I hope it ends soon.

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Random things:

Hello to my reader in United Arab Emirates! And in the UK! And in Venezuela! I noticed that the reader map thingy only keeps track of the last 100 people to click on it. So if you've disappeared (France and Australia), click on it again! You've got a bunch of people in the US to compete with. Tee hee. I do have to say that I'm really amazed that that many people visit my blog, and from so many different places. At least four different continents. I have to admit that geographically, I can never remember if the Saudi Penninsula counts as part of Africa or Europe, but if it does qualify as Africa, then five continents. People on five different continents have visited my blog at one point or another. That's pretty darn amazing, if I do say so myself. I'm curious at to how you all found me. But it makes me feel all warm and fuzzy, too, so thank you to all of you for stopping by to say hello. You make my day.

I think I'm either allergic to my workplace or to Chicago in general because I've not felt well since I got back. Maybe moving to New York would be good for my health...

If you've never had a pet, might I suggest a visit to your local animal shelter to pick one out. I can't even begin to tell you the joy that my cat brings into my life. He just likes being near me. Or on my lap. He talks to me and tells me about his day. He plays with me. He's got me so trained, it really is sad. But it is so nice to come home to someone who is happy to see me, yet is content to sit on the back of the couch by my head while I eat dinner and vegetate. Both of the friends I visited on the East Coast have cats, and it was lovely to meet and play with their cats, but there is nothing like coming home to your own. We know each other better. We trust each other more. So seriously, if you've never had a pet, I'd suggest going to check one out. Make sure you can take care of it, though. If you're not home a lot, I might suggest a hamster or a cat rather than a dog -- dogs require a lot more time and energy. But get a bunny. Get a tarantula. Get some fish. You will be astounded by how different each one is, and how complex their personalities are. And you will melt when they get to know you well enough to trust you and show affection. Even if that display of affection is sitting between the shower curtain and the liner and meowing until you're finished taking your shower.

Why does every public radio station announcer sound like he or she is stoned? Do they teach you that in public radio station announcer school? Or do they teach people who actually go to school to become radio station announcers how to not make themselves sound stoned, and in all truth, we all sound stoned when talking on the radio unless we make a conscious effort not to? I think public radio would have a much better reputation amongst the pop culture whores if the djs were more engaging.

I know I'm not making a lot of sense. Please bear with me. It's my work allergies. My brain isn't working right.

Have a lovely day everybody!

Monday, December 19, 2005

And a happy belated birthday to my Bostonian guy friend. It's hard to keep up with you now that your site is gone. But I hope you are well, and I hope you had a lovely day yesterday.

And my Filipino friend who is soon to be a dad, happy birthday to you, too. I hope you have a particularly nice day today, even though it is horribly cold outside.

So yeah, it's been a while. Sorry about that. I've been busy. Let's see...

Thank you to my surgeon friend and her husband for letting me stay with them outside Philly, and it was an absolute pleasure to meet your son! He is beautiful. This perfect little human being fell asleep in my arms. I was so honored. But yeah, I got to go visit them for about...twelve hours? Maybe? Beautiful house in a rather suburban area, which was kind of odd in and of itself. I'm so out of touch with the suburbs. I don't think that's necessarily a good thing. The suburbs have their advantages. I've just become so much of a city person. It was almost a relief when the baby started screaming at 4am because there was some noise. I can't sleep without my city noises anymore.

I love New York. I hate driving into New York, but I love New York. It is really odd to me that this place I've only visited a handful of times feels so much like home. I dunno. I guess when I tapped into the city's energy four or five years ago (has it only been that long?), I really tapped in. But I understand why New Yorkers don't want to leave. It really is an amazing city and I truly, truly love being there. Someone asked me last week where I plan on being a starving artist and my initial response was, of course, Chicago, but it occurred to me that if I wanted to go somewhere else (i.e. New York), now might be a good time to do it. Aside from the "I have no money" thing. But it's something to think about. Maybe give New York a try in the near future and see if it is as much fun to live there as it is to visit.

The Moby concert was okay. I hate to say it, but it was just okay. I went with a woman I haven't really hung out with much before, and I think we had a lot of fun, so in that respect, it was fun. And I always love watching Moby on stage. But he had a cold, so he seemed a little...slow. Or something. Or maybe it was just that they played most of his stuff really down tempo. Even the slow stuff was slower than usual. I did like the 37 versions of Porcelain as they were fixing one of the amps, and I liked That's When I Reach for My Revolver and Lift Me Up, but yeah. It was a very self-indulgent show because it could be. I wonder what it is like to be up on stage and know that no matter what you do, the entire audience will love it. I'm sure he had fun. I'm sure all of the musicians on stage had fun. I was just hoping they'd rock out a little more. It was fun to see some of the songs that have never been played in public before. And this really tall guy who works for the circus was hitting on me for the first half of the evening, but I think I freaked him out with my enthusiasm for the show. He was decidedly not a dancer. He was there with a couple of his friends who were Moby fans. I think he liked the show, but he wasn't really into it. And he kind of disappeared once the live set was over. This other guy came out and told what was one of the funniest stories I have ever heard while they were switching over for Moby's DJ set. I realized it had been probably weeks since I laughed that hard and I really needed that. Unfortunately, this very talented, very funny story teller was then mobbed by a group of women who seemed to want to make out with him just because he was famous and/or knows famous people and he fell for it. Oh well. With any luck, he'll get more stories out of it. And then Moby came out to DJ. I will say this: I loved his song selections. Granted, a lot of the records he spun were his own, but they were really good. There was some other stuff mixed in there, too, but it was good, dark house, which is exactly what I like. Sadly, he did little to no beat matching/mixing. He'd drop the bass out on one record while the vocal was doing something, and then just start another record at the right time. The guys who spun at my 25th birthday party are SO much better. I have to admit, I was a smidge disappointed. Granted, he's not been DJing in years, but he knew this show was coming up. He could have practiced. Or practiced more. And also on the sad front, there was almost noone there who could really dance to that music. Nothing really inspirational on the dance floor. I found myself thinking I wouldn't have minded so much if I had been drunk, but I wasn't. It got to be tough to really dance 'cuz...I dunno. It just seemed like the crowd wasn't really there. Or if they were, they were too focused on "Oh my god, it's Moby!" to pay attention to the music. I stayed to the end, though, but didn't hang out after to try to meet him again. It was time to go home. I did tell the drummer that it was a good set. He was shorter than I remember him, but still really friggin' hot.

Oh, and while I was in New York, anyway, the transit strike did not happen. About which I was very happy. Subways in New York are awesome, both for their accessibility and the people you see on them. Priceless.

Friday, I had lunch at Teany with one of my New York hosts. He's not the vegetarian sort, but he does like food, so he humored me and I think we had a nice time. Honestly, I go there for the food. The first time I went, I went to support Moby. I go back because it really is just damn good food. I got some to go, too. If I lived in New York, I'd go bankrupt eating at Teany all of the time. Though I started thinking about how to make that stuff at home, and I think I could do it. Some of it anyway. Not the teas. I'd still have to buy those.

And we went to a party that night whereat I got to see most of the rest of my New York friends. It was fun. I could so be a New Yorker.

Thank you to my lovely New York hosts. Your apartment is really cool with the lack of right angles, and your cat is darling, and thank you for letting me take over your living room for a couple of days. Hopefully next time I'll get to stay a bit longer and maybe all three of us can hang out at the same time instead of the sort of time-share thing we had going on this time around.

And then off for my first out of town gig in Williamsport, PA. SO WEIRD! I was freaking out as I was driving into Williamsport, in that "Do one thing every day that scares you" kind of a way. Here I was, driving into this little, very quiet, very deserted-looking town to play music for people who have no idea who I am, and I have no idea if any of my marketing techniques have reached anyone. Turns out, they didn't really. None of the discs I sent to radio stations got played, near as I can tell. The two people who showed up came to see the guy who booked me and was opening for me and they had no idea anyone else was scheduled to play. So it was as I feared. An audience of four, including the guy who opened for me and the barista. In their defense, they were a great crowd, albeit small. I'm always amazed when men like my music, but they were really diggin' it, and made it sound like there were a lot more than three people in the crowd (the barista was doing a lot of cleaning and stuff, so she didn't clap much). And they were really nice people. I ended up getting a drink with two of them after the show and admittedly, the one who wasn't hitting on me was the cooler of the two (probably because he wasn't hitting on me), but it was a fun evening. And, for the second time in my life, I found myself working with someone who has worked with a Monkee. The guy who booked me/opened for me is the keyboard player in Davy Jones' new band. So that was kind of groovy. I like being two degrees from the Monkees. I find that somehow cooler than being two degrees from Kevin Bacon. Everyone has ties to Kevin Bacon. How many people do you know who have ties to the Monkees? I thought so.

And then I got up and drove home yesterday. Pennsylvania is too big. Ohio is too expensive. But Chicago is beautiful. I love coming home to Chicago, and knowing that my cat is waiting for me by the door. As much as I love New York, I think it might break my heart to leave Chicago.

So thank you again to my surgeon friend and her husband, my New York hosts, the Java Juice and Art Cafe and Johnny Blair, the two guys who came to see my show, my friend who went to see Moby with me, and my other New York friends for making this a lovely trip. Next time, I'll stay longer. And hopefully play to bigger crowds.

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

It's kind of comforting in a really strange way when your doctor laughs at how healthy you are.

On another note, the longer version of Leftover Voices is so much better than the short version! I'm so in love with that movie. And thank you to all of my friends who came out to see it last night -- it meant the world to me to have you there with me. And I'm such a rock star that I took the train home from my movie premiere, ate some Thai food, and went to bed. Party monster! w00t.


On yet another note, I leave for the east coast tomorrow. I'm excited to see my surgeon friend and her husband and new baby. I'm excited to see my New York friends. I'm excited to see a really awesome Moby show and to eat at Teany way more times than one human should in 48 hours. I'm excited and nervous to play in Williamsport. What if nobody shows up? Well, then I'll have an actual rockstar story. "Yeah, my first out of town show was in this cafe in Williamsport, Pennsylvania and it was just after finals so all of the students had gone home and there were three people in the audience, including the guy who opened for me and the barista. But we had a good time and got really caffeinated and I drove home in a blizzard the next day in time for my theater company's holiday party." Every rock star needs such a story, right? Right? Is it okay if I don't have one? Is it okay if a lot of people show up and the gig rocks? Speaking of which, I need to remember to bring CDs.

Anyway. This will be the life of a starving artist. This is the life I am signing up for and I'm excited to see what it is like. And I'm still, as Mike Doughty says, "Feelin' so good that it hurts my skin." Be well and wish me luck!

Monday, December 12, 2005

Holy crap, I have an Australian reader, too! Welcome!

And to all of you across the US, hi!

I'm thinking the only problem with this reader locator thingy is that I don't know who all of you are, necessarily. Well anyway, for whatever reason you found my site, thanks for popping by and reading. Makes me feel all warm and fuzzy.
Leftover Voices full-length premiere is tonight. Yay! I'm excited. A little bit nervous, but mostly excited. I'm hoping I can get past my own physicality tonight as I watch it. As in, I hope I don't spend this whole screening thinking, "I had hair. And it was such pretty hair," like I did last time.

And I don't know how many of you out there watch "Grey's Anatomy" (though I'm guessing that out of the 23 people who have clicked on the reader locator thingy, the one person in France probably does not -- sorry, dude), but at the end of last night's episode, in order to feel Christmasy, Izzy, Meredith, George, and the dog ended up lying with their heads under the Christmas tree looking at the lights. So when the show was over, I did just that. I turned off all of the other lights in my apartment, turned on some Christmas music, and laid down on the floor with my head under my Christmas tree, looking up through the needles at the lights and the ornaments. I have to say, it was really nice. Made that much nicer by the fact that my cat came to join me, like it was no big deal to nap under the Christmas tree.

You know, they've done studies that have shown that having a pet is good for your health -- it reduces stress and lowers blood pressure and stuff -- and if you have a pet, you know the love of which I speak when I say I love my cat more than anything. They've also now done studies on pets and found that the touch of a familiar person does the same thing for the pet that it does for the human -- lowers stress, reduces blood pressure, etc. When Owen was little, he was such an attention whore; he didn't care who was giving him attention as long as someone was petting him. But as he is getting older, he is becoming more and more my cat. When company is over, he still comes to me for affection. And it's little things like him napping under the Christmas tree with me that make me think he loves me, too, in his own way. And it's thoughts like that that absolutely melt my heart.

Sunday, December 11, 2005

Feliz cumpleanos a mi amigo. Deseo que tienes muchos anos buenos.

(My apologies to any Spanish speakers who I offended by slaughtering your language.)

Friday, December 09, 2005

So a plane skidded off a runway at Midway Airport in Chicago last night during the snowstorm and is still, I believe, parked on Central Avenue near 55th.

When my friend called to tell me to turn on the news last night because of something that happened with a plane, I, of course, gasped in fear. After about a second, though, I realized that it was a weather related thing. The runways weren't de-iced enough or something. Because really, it sounds like the plane did a donut or something -- it just skidded out of control, the same way a car will in these conditions, and the pilot lost control. Not because he was drunk or because he was negligent, but because when a 50 ton aircraft hits a big patch of ice going 50 miles per hour, it's hard to regain control (the 50 tons is an estimate, as is the speed of the plane at the time -- I don't know the exact numbers; I wasn't there).

But I still have to say that my heart goes out to the family of the six year old boy who was killed when the plane hit two cars. Apparently about a dozen people were injured, but I've only heard about the one death. How heartbreaking. I'm truly sorry for your loss.

In my uber-happy state, though, I am thankful that the damage was not worse. I am thankful that it was a simple weather-related accident (I believe) and not some crazy sabotage scheme. I am thankful that the 90 people on the plane got to go home okay. I'm sorry about the little boy, though. I can't imagine how his parents are feeling now.

So let this be a lesson to all of us -- when your plane is delayed because of snowstorms, take some comfort in the fact that it means you'll land later safely in good weather, rather than taking out a couple of cars and going home with bumps and bruises from being tossed around in an out of control plane.
So I'm happy. And it's kind of freaking me out. I've not felt this good in a very long time and I can't identify any sort of trigger for my persistent good mood. Get this:

Yesterday, it snowed in Chicago. A lot. And I had to walk all over campus in the snow collecting signatures. Then I had to drive home and it took me two hours to go the seven miles from my place of business to my home. The roads were slick and there was not a plow in sight. People kept getting out of their cars at stop lights to brush the snow off of their rear windows because we were going so slow that there was a nice accumulation building up there, no matter how hard you blasted your rear defroster. And I ran out of windshield washer fluid even though the oil change place says they filled it up just last week when I was in there. And I was sore from working out. And I came home to a house that smelled funny from the exterminator being there all day. And none of it pissed me off. None of it. I met a mechanic who lives around the corner from me who said he'd help me change out my headlight, and he was helping people get their cars out this morning. I smiled at a random guy using a snow blower to clear the sidewalk. I thanked another neighbor for shoveling her part of the sidewalk. I've been downright cheery for DAYS and I don't get it. I still have same crappy job, I still have no boyfriend nor any prospects for a boyfriend, I'm still facing having no money for a while, and it's winter in Chicago, but I'm stupid happy. Verging on giddy. A good song comes on the radio and I clap my hands. It's nuts.

So yeah, look out. There's no telling what might happen if this cheerfulness persists.

It's weird, though. I now understand why nobody wanted to hang out with me all those years I was depressed. It's hard to be in a good mood and walk into a room with someone who just wants to complain all of the time. Not saying I won't listen -- take note, dear friends, it's still okay to talk to me about not happy things -- but I get it now. When someone is not happy for seven years, it gets taxing to hang around them. I get it, and I apologize for that. I'm happy now, though. Come talk to me.

Thursday, December 08, 2005

I think I could get used to this personal trainer thing. I mean really, that was awesome.

We didn't really do any exercises that were horribly unfamiliar to me, and most of it was stuff that I could duplicate at home. But it's different with someone there pushing you to do just three more reps, just two more, just three more, just one more, just two more, okay, and done. And I'm sore today, but not "I can't move" sore. It's a tightness. My muscles know they got a workout.

I'm not sure I dig on the whole gym thing, though. The air in there was really...pressurized or something. Like being on an airplane. And my trainer has a tendency to mumble, so I kept having to ask him to repeat himself. After a while, I just took to smiling and nodding, and/or looking like I was focusing on my workout.

But I kind of like the idea of going to a person and saying, "Make me look like Linda Hamilton in Terminator 2" and knowing that I will get there. He will select and/or design exercises to give me those shoulders, those arms, those abs. Of course, that is not the request I made yesterday. But it's kind of cool to think that I could.

Unfortunately, personal training is expensive, so I won't be able to keep it up once my two sessions have been used up. But I think I also understand the "gym buddy" thing now. When you have someone to work out with, you do more and it goes faster. And I would also like to say a really big thank you to my trainer for not laughing at me in my workout pants. He said I had good form when I was working out, and that's good to know, too. Though he kept saying, "I love that shape," which was a little odd. Almost made me wonder if he was diggin' my mongongous ass. Meh. My gay male friends love my ass. I think it's just me that doesn't like it. All the more reason why I should do something about it -- for me. Not for anybody else. Just for me.

But yeah, when I'm rich and famous, I'm going to hire a personal trainer. I liked that.

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

And happy birthday to my first reader.

I'll give you shit about forgetting my birthday at a later date.
So today is a wholly unremarkable day, save three things:

1) It's Pearl Harbor day. Aside from the really bad movie of the same name, I think Pearl Harbor is something worth remembering. We were attacked on our home soil and a lot of people died, both Americans and Japanese. We should honor those who fell. I kind of feel like I should also say something about the fact that when were attacked that time, we retalliated immediately against the people responsible for the attack, not a neighboring country with better oil reserves, but hey. Let's not get into that just now. Pearl Harbor day.

2) When I woke up, it was SIX degrees outside. By the time I got to work, it was between ZERO AND FOUR degrees, depending on how close you are to the lake. How bizarre is it that I'm looking forward to going to New York in the winter because it will be warmer there?

3) I'm going to a personal trainer after work. I won a couple of sessions with a personal trainer in a silent auction and figure I should use them before they expire. On the phone, when he asked me what my fitness goals were, I told him I want a smaller butt. He asked about weight loss and arms and legs and stuff, and I told him that maybe a general toning would be good, but mostly, I want a smaller butt. And honestly, I'm half-way expecting him to cringe in fear when he sees me in my workout clothes. That's what big t-shirts are for, right?

Honestly, I don't look bad. I'm not fat. If I wanted to be cast on a soap opera, I'd need to lose about thirty pounds. But I am not fat. I'm in pretty good shape. I'm just anticipating this trip to the gym to be hard on my ego. Fortunately I have the "I'm leaving my job" excuse to not sign up for a full membership or continue the training sessions beyond the two that I won. On the down side, if I like being trained...we'll think about that later. I probably wouldn't continue at this gym anyway because it's in the south Loop. I'd rather find one closer to home, if I went to one at all.

Anyway. Yeah. Totally unremarkable day. Enjoy!

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

See, the thing about meeting people at my age is that you have to automatically assume they are taken -- either married or in a long term relationship with someone. Which is weird, because up until this point, it was usually safe to assume that the people you met were not taken. In junior high and high school, it was a pretty safe bet that most of the people around you were single. Or even if they were in a relationship, if one party or the other was offered just the right incentive, they could very quickly be out of a relationship. No, I never broke anyone up. But I saw it happen all of the time. But now, just about everyone I meet is married, with someone, or gay. And yet, I have all of these single female friends. What gives?

I know I'm going to regret this later, but I've not hidden anything from you guys before, so why should I start now? I think I've even posted things like this before, and it's usually greeted with, "Don't do it! You'll ruin your life!" type enthusiasm. But here goes: I'm feeling the urge to date. Maybe it was brought on by my Texas friend saying I look particularly cute just now. Or maybe it was brought on by my other projects ending, so I actually have/had time to date. Or maybe it's just that I've finally figured out what I want and what I'm willing to sacrifice to get it that I'm ready to start looking and see if it's actually out there. Maybe it's because I've conquered so many of the other challenges in my life that all that's really left is this one. But I feel like giving dating a chance.

I would, however, like to put this disclaimer on it: I have not yet met anyone I would like to date. None of my friends. None of the people at my high school reunion. None of the people I talk to at random on the internet. None of the people I used to party with two shows ago. I've been giving it some serious thought and I need to find someone totally new and unrelated to anything else I have going on and date him.

But I will say this. If you are so inclined, go back through my archives to December of 2004 (I believe). Maybe it was December of 2003, I don't remember exactly. But I made a list of qualities that I would like in a partner. If you happen to run across someone who fits that description, please let me know. Age isn't really important. Height isn't really important. Gender kind of is -- I'd rather be with a man than a woman at this point in my life. But yeah, if you know that guy who I'm describing, please let me know.

Man, do I sound pathetic. I'm not desperate. I'm fine being single. I think, though, that I'd like to give sharing my life with someone a try. You know. Something new.

This sounded much better and more philosophical in my head. Sorry about that. I got distracted on my way here by a cute bald guy. Who has a long-term girlfriend. See what I mean?

Things are falling into place for my visit to New York. And Philadelphia. I'm so excited to meet my friend's son. I'm so excited to see a Moby show. I'm so excited to hang out with my New York friends, even just for a day. I'm so excited to eat at Teany. I'm so excited to play a show in Williamsport. It occurred to me as I was looking for a hotel in Williamsport that yes, I do qualify for the business traveller rate. I'm going out there on business, and my business is music. How cool is that?

So yeah, I feel much better now that I know where I'm going, when, and who I'm staying with. Breathing much easier. Yay.

Monday, December 05, 2005

So yeah, I just added this little thing over on the side there that I found on my Texas friend's site. If you click on it, it will keep track of where all of my readers come from.

So click on it! I want to know where y'all are.

Tee hee.
I'm going to New York next week. I'm going to Philadelphia next week. I'm going to play a show in Williamsport, Pennsylvania next week.


Friday, December 02, 2005

The problem with feeling Christmasy so early in the season is that I keep feeling the need to wish people a happy holiday when I leave the room. And I stop myself and say, "But the holidays are still three weeks away. They're going to think I'm crazy."

Maybe I am.

Oh well.

Oh! I'm posting this here, too, just in case I don't have your email address and you want to go:

Leftover Voices
Monday, December 12
6:00 pm
1104 S. Wabash, 3rd floor cinema
Chicago, IL

I'm geeked to see the longer version.

Okay. Happy holidays, kids.

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Sign #86 of the coming apocalypse: I'm listening to Christmas music at work and enjoying it. Granted, it's the online WXRT Christmas music station, so it's artists I like doing holiday tunes (and yes, they played Adam Sandler's Hannukah song, too), but still. For years, Christmas music for me has been pretty much exclusively "The Nightmare Before Christmas" soundtrack. But something about the pretty, powdery snow, knowing what I want to give most people for Christmas, the thought of getting a tree this weekend all put me in the mood to listen to Christmas music. And lo and behold, the link to this station showed up in my inbox today. It's pretty good.

So yeah, if there was anything you really wanted to do with your life but haven't yet, do it soon, for the world is surely coming to an end.

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

I have to say that three of the sweetest words in the English language are "new contact lenses." Followed by "that don't instantly dry out" makes it that much sweeter.

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

So they're talking once again about the smoking ban in Chicago. I know this will not be the popular opinion amongst a lot of people that I know but


Let me first say that I have a lot of friends who are smokers. I will never tell them to quit. Me harping on them is not going to get them to quit. They know that what they are doing is unhealthy and will lead to a very unpleasant premature death. That saddens me, yes. But truth of the matter is, there is nothing I can do about it. They've done studies on addiction and essentially what happens is that the addictive substance turns off one's ability to make rational decisions at the same time that it tells your body that you want more of the substance. Chemically, you are unable to make the right choice. And what good is it going to do to have your friend down your throat all of the time about something you know is bad for you but just can't stop? You're going to stop talking to that friend, is what's going to happen. So for the sake of keeping my friends who mean the world to me, I overlook their smoking habits. I'm not crazy about the habits, especially when my friends have just had a cigarette and they go to hug me and they smell really bad, but insist on holding on for a long time. I just don't breathe during those hugs. I love my friends but I hate cigarettes. Does that make sense? If they come to the decision on their own that they want to quit, I will do whatever I can to help. But I'm not going to force them to try.


For a long time, there has been this mentality that smokers should have the right to smoke wherever and if you don't want to smoke, you don't have to, or you can avoid the places where smokers go. NOT TRUE. I'm out for a leisurely stroll, trying to do something good for myself, and I pass a half a dozen smokers who chose to exhale when I am in their general proximity. Again, my choice is to not stroll there or not breathe. When do I get to complain about my right to breathe clean air without being labeled an oppressor?

All of that aside, let's look at smoking bans in general. Los Angeles led the way. L.A., for crying out loud, where they give you a pack of cigarettes on your ninth birthday so you can be cool like the movie stars. The only place I had been where they still had cigarette girls in bars. Not just here or there bars, but in all of them. At least all of the ones I went to when I was out there. Until they decided enough! No more smoking in bars and restaurants. My first question was, "What about the cigarette girls?" My friend who was living out there at the time said they now sell gum and mints and things. So there was no dip in employment associated with the change. And from what I've heard, there was no dip in tobacco sales, either. People who still smoke just go outside to do it.

So New York joins in the fun and bans smoking in all bars and restaurants. Again, no dip in employment, no dip in tobacco sales. But it does mean that when I go out to a bar, I come home smelling...not like a bar! My clothes don't reek of smoke so badly that I want to hang them out my windows to air out before letting them into my laundry basket. This is particularly nice for the traveler because you can put your clothes that you wore to the bar back into your suitcase without all of your clean clothes being immediately infected with the putrid smell of stale cigarette smoke.

And now Chicago is debating the ban. I'm not sure where the debate lies. Smokers will continue to smoke, and yes, in the same quantities they do now. Bars will still make money off of people coming out to drink. Restaurants will still make money off of people coming out to eat. But fewer non-smokers will get lung cancer from exposure to secondhand smoke. It looks to me like a win-win-win situation. Where's the debate?

I know I've probably offended a lot of smokers with this post. For that, I apologize. Like I said, a lot of my really dear friends are smokers and I'm not out to change them. I know that this ban won't change them. They will still don their parkas and gloves and hats in the dead of winter and run outside for a smoke and I will continue to love them dearly, even when the lung cancer and the emphazema hit and they are smoking through their trachial tubes like Andy Garcia in Dead Again. But how nice it would be to go out and spend time with my friends and come home not smelling like smoke. Because I choose to be a non-smoker, largely because I don't want to smell like smoke all of the time. It would be really nice to lead a smoke-free life. Or at least a reduced-smoke life.

Please pass the smoking ban.
So I got my oil changed last night and asked the guy to change out my headlights. This is after a twenty minute side trip back the two blocks to the auto parts store to buy a second headlight after finding out they are three times more expensive if you buy them at the oil change place. Anyway. They set about the oil change and after about ten minutes, the guy comes back in with one unopened headlight and gives it back to me, telling me the one bulb is fine. I asked him why it doesn't turn on then. He told me it wasn't plugged in. Which is strange because when I looked under the hood forty five minutes earlier, trying to change the bulb myself, both of them were plugged in. So I asked if they were both working and the guy replied yes. They completed my oil change and gave me a new air filter and whatnot and I paid and they sent me on my way. Pulling out of the oil change place, only one headlight came on.

This leaves me with one of two possible solutions: the guy figured that I like having the one headlight unplugged and decided to leave it that way or he also decided that taking out the battery in order to change the light was a pain in the ass and not worth the trouble, so he told me a nice little lie designed to make me feel like an idiot. Neither one is a satisfactory choice. Granted, he didn't charge me for the labor of putting in a new headlight, but still. Don't lie to my face, dude. That's not how you should run a business.

And then my cat threw up on the carpet this morning. So I'm grumpy. Sorry, but I am. I'm grumpy and starting to freak out about my trip out east, mostly because I haven't heard back from anyone, so I don't know if I have a place to stay anywhere. I know it will all work out, but still. And I'm coming to terms with the fact that I'm going to have to get new contacts soon. And I have to do some Christmas shopping. And it all boils down to now is not the time to be saving money. Which is irritating. But I think I will call that new tea place about a job. Can you imagine me working in a tea bar? How perfect would that be?

Monday, November 28, 2005

I guess it really can happen. I'm going to have to come up with a new story now...
At least it hasn't been snowing for the past two days...

So one of my headlights went out on my car. I went to the auto parts store and bought a new light and popped my hood to change it out looks like I have to take out my battery in order to change the light. This makes me nervous. I've never removed the battery from a car before. I'm sure it's something I could do, or if I had really nimble fingers, I might not have to remove it at all, but it still makes me nervous. Car battery acid is really nasty stuff, and I'm nervous enough as it is putting in a halogen headlight because any oil from your fingers on the lamp and it could explode as soon as it turns on. So I close the hood and decide I'm going to either wait a few days and try again when I'm feeling braver, or ask the guys at Jiffy Lube to install it for me while they're in there when I go to get my oil changed.

This morning, it's icky and rainy as I'm on my way to work, so I turn on my headlights. The other one is now out, too.

So after work, while my car is still under the protective covering of the parking garage, I'm going to change out the light that does not require that I remove the battery and hope it works. Then I'll procure another new lamp from the auto parts store and perhaps tomorrow after work, again under the protective covering of the parking garage, I'll try to change out the other headlight. Wish me luck!

Sunday, November 27, 2005

So yeah, the reunion happened. It was weird. Good and weird.

And Thanksgiving happened. It was fun.

And my uncle got married and I got to see a lot of my family and it was really nice. But I felt bad because I wanted to drive home last night instead of staying with my family overnight in Wisconsin, but I really just wanted to be at home. And this morning, I woke up with my cat next to me and knew coming home was the right choice. I read and we both went back to sleep and we both woke up again at about two in the afternoon and I was really happy I came home last night so I could be indulgent in my laziness.

And then I just got an email saying I still have a gig in Pennsylvania on the 17th. I had thought it was just going to be cancelled because I hadn't heard from the guy in a long time about moving to a different venue or anything, but he talked to the original venue and I'm still going to get to play on the 17th. I'm now nervous as fuck. I know it will be great, but wow. Yeah. I hope people show up. I've got some serious planning to do.

Friday, November 25, 2005

To the tune of Fraire Jaques

Happy Thanksgiving
Happy Thanksgiving
Save your bread
Save your bread
Stuff it up the turkey
Stuff it up the turkey
Be sure it's dead
Be sure it's dead

Tee hee.

Yeah, I know I'm a smidge late, but I hope you all had a lovely Thanksgiving. I did. It even included a really nice visit with my dad, so that was good. And just so you know, I'm thankful for you guys. My friends, be they the ones I see on an almost daily basis, or the ones I really only know through virtual channels, I'm thankful for you guys. And my family. And my cat. And my home. And my health. And all the usual crap.

Anyway. I hope you all had a very happy Thanksgiving and are avoiding the malls today. Eep.

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

This is what is known as a perfect snow. Not too much -- maybe a half an inch, if that -- but enough to dust everything in white. It reminds me of Holland, because even though it doesn't snow much in Holland, it snowed when I was there, and it was just this nice, beautiful dusting of white on the rooftops. Gorgeous.

And this is the thick, wet snow that is perfect for making snowballs. It's not blowing around in our faces, making outdoor functions difficult; it's just resting there, being pretty. It's easy to brush off of your car. It melts when it hits pavement. It's good snow for going outside in your snowpants and having fun with. Well, if there was a little more, it might be good for playing in, or if you gank some from your neighbor's yard. But this is a nice snow. A good snow to start off the snowing season. A good snow to remind us that snow isn't always dreadful.

I am, for the first time in YEARS, trying to head into the holidays with joy instead of resentment. It helps that Fucknut is so excited about Christmas -- it's kind of infectious. If only I could figure out what to get everybody...

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

So my high school reunion is on Friday. I'm going. After much debate and hemming and hawing, I decided to go. Who knows? I could meet people I went to school with who I never knew and they could turn out to be cool. I could get those looks of, "Wow, you turned into a worthwhile person" that will keep my ego going for months. Or it could be really dull and I'll go home after ten minutes. Whatever. My curiosity got the best of me and I'm going to go. I'm going solo, though, so as not to subject any of my friends to this whole thing. That's cruel and unusual punishment.

But in a way, I'm really scared to go, especially after seeing Leftover Voices the other day. After watching that film, I felt the need to be that character again. It was really bizarre. So when I walk into a room filled with people I went to high school with, am I going to feel the need to be who I was when I was in high school? I hope not. And in the spirit of preventing that, I'm going to list a few things here that I have accomplished since I graduated from high school. I may not be skinnier, I may not have better skin, I may not be a millionaire. But these are things I have done with my life that I am proud of and that I can brag about at my reunion, if I am forced into a position wherein I feel the need to brag.

I graduated from college. Took me three years and I had a 3.911 (out of 4.0) GPA.
I got my paralegal certificate, with honors.
I got an apartment in an up-and-coming neighborhood in Chicago.
I joined a theater company.
I starred in a fully improvised film.
I recorded two albums, and a single.
I raised over $6,000 for breast cancer research.
I walked two and a half marathons.
I went to Australia.
I went back to Europe.
I fell in love.
I fell in love with New York.
I wrote and directed a children's musical that audiences and my cast fell in love with.
I found friends who love me anyway.
I shaved my head.
I got myself un-depressed.
I paid off my debt.
I got a tattoo.
I befriended the cutest cat in the world.
I sponsor a little girl in the Philippines.
I performed with a professional lindy hop troupe.
I took second place in the cabaret division at the American Lindy Hop Championships with the Chicago Shag Team.
I marched in the Chicago Thanksgiving Day parade and the Gay Pride Parade.
I was on television I don't know how many times.
I had a song played on WXRT.
I played a song live on WLUW.
I organized two Chicago Lindy Exchanges.
I starred in a Jeff Recommended musical.
I touched the lives of I don't even know how many people through my music and my theatrical/cinematic performances.
I appeared in a film that showed at the Music Box.
I appeared in a film that showed at the Gene Siskel Film Center, and several festivals across the country and in Canada.
I designed and built my own clothing, and the costumes for I don't know how many shows (but a lot).
I learned how to run a sound and light board.
I learned how to play the guitar.
I learned how to say "I love you" in Dutch.
I got my laugh noticed by Sam Mendes.
I got to pull costumes from the Paramount Studios costume cage.
I met Moby three times.
I spoke to Ryan Stiles.
I became vegan.

For the girl nobody noticed, that's not too shabby. I just have to remember all of those things on Friday when I walk into that room. I have to remember that even though there is no "got married" on that list, I am still a worthwhile person and I've done a lot of great things with my life. Hell, most people don't do in their entire lives half of the things I've done in the last ten years.

Wish me luck!

Monday, November 21, 2005

Sunday, November 20, 2005

To the original cast of Dream Juice:

Just over a year ago, Corn asked me if I wanted to write and direct a children's show and I said no. I went home that night and the idea for Dream Juice was born. I took on the task, petrified of what might come, scared that I might not be able to handle it, frightened that nobody would like my little script.

And then I found the ten of you. Or you found me. For one reason or another, you all walked into our little theater and I'm so thankful you did. The show you created is so much more fun than the one that I wrote. You breathed so much life into those characters and you made audiences of all ages fall in love with you. You kept me interested and engaged and laughing every weekend for eight weeks. You brought new things to the plate every day. You kept exploring and never stopped playing. Our closing day show was the perfect ending to one of the most amazing and rewarding experiences of my life. I thank each and every one of you for being a part of this little show.

I think what I will miss most is watching it every weekend. I loved this show. I loved watching it. I loved the songs. I loved the interactions between the characters. I loved the costumes. I loved the lights. I really just loved watching this show every weekend, and I will miss it next weekend when I don't get to go and spend an afternoon with you guys.

Thank you, my cast. Thank you.

Saturday, November 19, 2005

Okay, so it was weird. Because it's me. Just me. For forty five minutes, it's me on screen. There is hardly a scene that I'm not in, and in a lot of them, it is just me. Just me. On screen. For forty five minutes. And in profile, I have no nose. And I really am pear-shaped. And I have a lovely back. And I have really beautiful hair. And I talk out of one side of my mouth. And I have a great, expressive face. And it's just me. For forty five minutes.

I'm excited to see the longer version of the film. I'm not sure that the whole story translates in the short version. I don't know if it will in the longer version. There are a couple of things about the film that if I didn't know what was going on, I don't think I'd know what was going on, and that opinion was reinforced by my mom and her partner. But the resounding comment from the entire audience was that I was amazing. The three leads were wonderful, and we all had a really great chemistry. Which I think is the important part. The guy who played my boss is so funny. I had forgotten most of it. I have a couple good lines in there, too.

I dunno. I have very mixed feelings about the whole thing. On the one hand, I gave an amazing performance. I was even empathizing with me on screen. And it is shot really well and the other performers are amazing and it is still one of the most incredible experiences of my life. On the other hand, there are a couple of things that didn't turn out the way I imagined they would and I'm not sure I like the way they did turn out. I'm still excited to see the longer version, and when I get my copy of the DVD, I'll probably watch it a million times. Because also, the first viewing for me of something that I'm in, I get so caught up in my own physicality that I can't really be objective. I have to watch it six or seven times before I get used to the fact that I have no nose and I'm pear-shaped and I talk out of one side of my mouth and can actually watch the film for the film, you know? So I need to see it a bunch more times. But it was wonderful to see it last night. It was great to see the director again. It was really strange to get so many compliments on my performance, especially because when the film was over, I felt the need to be my character and she doesn't do well in large social situations.

I want all of the rest of you to see it and tell me what you think. Honestly. Forget about the fact that I'm nude in about three scenes (or is it four?) and tell me honestly what you think of the film and the story and my performance. I'm excited to see what you think.

Friday, November 18, 2005

If I may borrow a phrase from The Shawshank Redemption, "I'm so excited I can barely sit still or keep a thought in my head." I get to see my movie tonight. I know this is the short version. I know there is another half an hour of yummy Leftover Voices goodness to be seen at a later date, but I'm so excited to see this. Four and a half years of anticipation have all built up to this. Why can't it be five o'clock now?

Thursday, November 17, 2005

So I decided last night that I wanted to get a smidge of exercise. Nothing too strenuous as I'm still battling this lump of goo in my throat, but I've gotten tired of sitting around all of the time. But also seeing as it was really cold and windy and snowy (yes, snowy) outside last night, I decided to exercise in my own apartment by walking around in circles. Yes, walking around in circles. I am that much of a dork. But my poor cat...if you've never had a cat, this will make no sense to you, but if you have, you know of what I speak. Owen is the kind of cat who likes to get to where I'm going before I do. If I'm in my room and start heading towards the living room, he runs to the kitchen to wait for me there. If I'm in the kitchen headed towards the bathroom, he thinks I'm going to my room and runs to wait for me there. It's really cute. But here I was, walking at a pretty brisk pace around in circles, one second looking like I was headed for the kitchen, the next looking like I was headed for my room. The poor thing probably got more exercise than I did, trying to keep up with where I might be going next. After about ten minutes, he gave up and took my spot on the couch and fell asleep. It was cute, though. My poor baby.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Holy crap, I get to see a short version of Leftover Voices this Friday.

I will say this: the project started out as the director's senior thesis film. So the version being shown on Friday is the version she is handing in for a grade. But I remember the morning that I showed up on set and she greeted me with a ginormous smile on her face and said, "We're making a feature film." It wasn't something that she planned; it just all turned out so much better than she imagined. So there is also a 75 minute version of the film that she considers to be the real film. I'm excited to see that one, too.

But this Friday, I get to see the 45 minute version of the film. I don't know if I should bring people to it or not, or if I want them to wait and see the longer version. If I go solo, it would also make it possible for me to "screen" the film in case there is anything in it I don't want people to see, then I don't have to invite them later. Tee hee. But holy crap, after four and a half years of waiting, I get to see this film on Friday. Two days from now.

I'm so excited!!!!!!!!!
Okay, so I'm going to rant for a minute, kind of inspired by all of the daytime television I subjected myself to while I was home sick. And the magazine I read in the waiting room at the doctor's office yesterday. I find myself wishing that I had the means to conduct some social research on a large scale so that I would have some actual figures with which to support my assertions, but I'm not sure how to go about that. Anyway, here goes.

I think the problem with Americans is that we're all in such a fucking hurry for everything. Too fat? Gotta lose weight now. Running late at the airport? Can't be bothered with security checks. Bad teeth? Need plastic surgery. Not feeling well? Need a rapidly dissolving pill that will make me feel better NOW!!! And I ask you, where has all of this hurrying gotten us?

We are still in the top five fattest nations in the world, if not the fattest.

Everyone I know is still always late.

We have men and women obsessed with plastic surgery, and entire television series devoted to fixing every little "problem" people might have with their physical appearance.

We have people on eighteen different medications at a time, just so that they can function at work, when if they would just take a day to rest and rejuvinate, their own bodies would heal them in a matter of days.

But we, as a people, can't wait a couple of days to feel better. We have to feel better NOW. Not even in ten minutes. NOW. We have to look better and feel better and perform better NOW. There are banks advertising the fact that they are trying to shave three seconds off of every ATM transaction, so that you have an extra three seconds to spend with your family. You know how long three seconds is? You just wasted it reading that sentence. I'm sorry. You could have been better spending your time with your family if, perhaps, I recorded this all as a podcast that you could listen to on the go, instead of actually having to read it.

I got sick last week. I felt it start, I felt is worsen, I am now feeling it go away. Did I pump myself with all kinds of drugs? No. I rested. I drank tea. I ate healthy foods. And voila! I'm better. Sure, it took a week, but you know what? Had my doctor given me antibiotics (which, believe it or not, a lot of doctors will give their patients antibiotics for viral infections, just so that the patient feels like he/she now has something that will make them feel better now), I could have gotten, I dunno, a yeast infection, which would then take another few days to clear up, all the while, my flu-like symptoms would just have to run their course anyway. Is it wrong that I chose not to take a drug that could cause another problem, making me sicker longer and requiring more drugs, in favor of letting my body heal itself? Am I crazy? Or isn't it possible that I got sick in the first place because I was pushing myself too hard and what I really needed was just to slow down for a couple of days anyway?

But we, as Americans, are in such a hurry.

I watched this one talk show yesterday wherein the host conducted an experiment -- she donned a fat suit and walked around Los Angeles for a day to see what it was like to be obese. It was an eye opening experience for her, and I have to give her props for doing it. But at the same time, she got to go home and take the suit off at the end of the day, whereas her guests have to walk around with their bulk all of the time. And as the show went on, they moved away from obesity to other physical things that provoke laughter and teasing from others -- like a woman with really bad teeth. Their solution to the problem? Cosmetic dental surgery to give her a perfect smile. And the woman's reaction? She was so happy she was brought to tears.

Now here's where things start to piss me off. Somebody doesn't like something about his or her appearance. He or she writes to a television show for help. Television show provides the necessary plastic surgery. Person lives happy life looking "normal."

Since when is "normal" the goal? And since when is "normal" defined as "what 1% of the population looks like?"

Do you think we would give a crap about Sarah Jessica Parker if she had gotten the nose job agents told her to get? Would we recognize Bob Hope or Jay Leno without their chins? Would we know who Alfred Hitchcock was if he got liposuction? Would we care about Camryn Manheim if she did?

What these television shows are doing is taking what is unique and special about a person and removing it. Fixing it so that this person now looks more like, I dunno, somebody on TV or in a magazine. Someone we are told, as a society, looks perfect. Someone with a body type that is only really achievable for 1% of the population. The television show strips these people of everything that makes them interesting so that they can feel good about themselves.

Wait, what?

Yes, I know, it's still the same person on the inside. Whatever. When you walk into a room, do you notice the people who look like everybody else, or do you notice the people who have their own style? Their own look? Call me crazy, but I just kind of scan over the perfect-figured blonds, the average (though still good looking) guys, the cookie-cutter people. I know it's my own bias, but I gravitate towards the people with glasses, or the really tall, skinny ones, or the women with junk in their trunk because they just feel more real to me.

And for the record, I know what it is like to be teased your entire life about your physical appearance. While I was never obese, I was never skinny, either. I've always been on the edge between fat and acceptable. I had HORRIBLE skin as a teenager. I've always been really pale. I've been teased for so many aspects of my appearance, I've lost track of some of them. But I know that there are things I can do to change the things I'm really unhappy with. I can change my diet and exercise more if I want to lose weight. I know I have to wash my face at least twice a day to help prevent breakouts, but they still happen and I deal with it. And I'm always going to be pale, so I've learned to call myself "porcelain-skinned" instead of "fish-belly white." I know that these are all long-term commitments, and that I have to dedicate myself to a new lifestyle if I want something to really change. There is no pill that will "fix" me. I know people who have gotten liposuction and then gained weight back and you know what? Because they no longer have fat cells in certain areas of their bodies, other areas store that new fat and they look like deformed poodles or something.

There is no magic powder or pill or solution that will make you look like a supermodel for the rest of your life starting now.

So you have two choices: put in some real time and effort to change what you want changed naturally (but we're in such a hurry!), or realize that not everybody is supposed to look like a supermodel, and mmost likely, you are not one of "the chosen ones."

Like with any group of famous people, supermodels are about the top 1% of the population. Olympic athletes are the top 1%, but we don't all feel the need to be Olympic athletes. Award winning actors are (supposedly) the top 1% at their craft, but we don't all feel the need to be award winning actors. Nobel prize winners are the top 1% in their fields, but we don't all feel the need to be Nobel prize winners. Why do we spend millions of dollars every year on products and surgeries to try to look like the top 1%? Why not spend millions improving our minds or athletic skills or artistic abilities? Why are we so obsessed with appearance? Why is it okay to pursue the most physically damaging, least accessible 1% category there is?

I know that there are still a lot of societal biases against people who look "different," and I wish that would change. I wish we had a more realistic image of what "normal" is from which to judge "different." I wish people wouldn't be so quick to judge others based on physical appearance. I can do my part, but I'm talking about a whole societal overhaul here. I'm not saying we all have to get fat and knock out a few teeth and shave our heads or anything, but I am saying that we need to have some sort of middle ground. Obesity is not healthy. Neither is anorexia. A 5'9" tall woman with a 28 inch waist should not be considered "big." That's just wrong.

I don't have a solution. At this point, it's just something that pisses me off. I feel like I need to do more research and then write a book or something. I'm tired of living in the heroin chic generation. I'm tired of being part of this neverending race to get nothing important accomplished. I don't want to play this game anymore.

I'm going to get more tea.

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

One more day at home. I'm going to the doctor this afternoon. Caving and asking Western medicine for help. I figure I should take advantage while I still have insurance.

Disclaimer: I know how important health insurance is. Trust me. And it is part of my game plan to get insurance, even if I have to pay for it myself, when I leave this job. I will not be uninsured. Don't worry. But as long as I have good insurance that somebody else is paying for, I might as well take advantage, right? And besides, this coughing thing is getting old.

Illness aside, I would like to mention reason number 482 why I love my new property managment company and hate the old one. At my old place, it would take a while for the radiators to turn on in the fall, and throughout the winter if it got particularly cold, the radiators still did their same old thing. Even on weekends, they would come on once in the morning for about an hour, and twice in the evening for about a half an hour each time. And when they went off, it would get cold in there. I would, on occasion, call my property managment company and ask if they could do something about the heat, and it might come on for an extra ten minutes or something like that. Anyway.

At my new place, I haven't been able to figure out the radiator trick. They come on once in the morning and once at night, but it gets really cold in the interim. And one of them hasn't ever come on, near as I can tell. So over the weekend, when the radiators hadn't turned on for a couple of days at all, I left a message at my new property managment company asking if they had any advice on what the radiator trick might be. They called me this morning and asked a couple of questions -- are all of the coils turning on, etc. -- and they are sending someone out this afternoon to check all of my radiators to see if the filters are clean to make sure they are in proper working order. Not just a "give them an extra blast of heat" fix-it, but a "let's find out what the problem is and fix it" solution.

It's strange how the littlest things can become a big deal once you have a frame of reference. Thank you to my new property managment company for realizing that their tenants are people living in homes, not just people paying rent.

Monday, November 14, 2005

Still feel like shit, but at least I'm back at work, so I can feel like shit in public.

And Dream Juice is almost over. Just one more weekend. We got it on tape yesterday, though, so I'm really happy about that. And we had a productive meeting about turning it into a tour, so I'm happy about that, too. And it's just about time to start working on the next Corn show -- Soft Corn Porn. Yeah. Should be interesting.

I wish my head was working right...

Sunday, November 13, 2005

The ickies seem to have plateaued. Here's hoping they start to go away tomorrow.

Here's hoping my heat turns on soon.

Saturday, November 12, 2005

Day four of the mystery illness has proven thus far to be the worst. I'm hoping this means it'll go away soon. Like, by Monday would be nice.

Bad Seed is over. Wow. The show I've been working on since February, the show I was going to pass up so that I could take a much deserved break, the show that turned into a phenomenon in the Chicago theater scene, the show that proved to the rest of my theater company that I can play more than a damsel in distress, is now over. It probably won't really hit me until next Friday night when it gets to be about 7:30 and I don't have to think about going to the theater. It's an interesting chapter of my life that has come to an end. I'll miss singing my song. I'll miss being evil once a week. I won't miss being covered in dirt. I will miss the red eyeliner. Though that one, I can do any time I want to, really.

What? It's a look.

Friday, November 11, 2005

So mucous is your body's defense against viruses and infections and stuff, right? So the fact that my mucous glands are now in overdrive means I should start healing soon, right?

Come on, mucous!

Gimmie your worst!


Scratch that.






Thursday, November 10, 2005

What's with the blue eyeshadow? No, really. When did blue eyeshadow become popular again? And why on earth did blue eyeshadow become popular again?


Wednesday, November 09, 2005

I don't remember what it's like to be able to be sick. To not be worrying about "am I going to make it through my show tonight?" To not have to put being sick on the back burner and go about life as usual even though my head is no longer connected to my body.

I got a sore throat last night. The kind where you wish you could vomit up your own esophagus and get a new one, so I took the day off today. And I just get to be sick. It's kind of nice. I've gotten a lot accomplished already -- I did my dishes, packaged up a pair of shoes that I have to return, and watered all of my plants. I still need to go to the post office and Joann Fabrics and the library, but I can do that later. If I want to go back to sleep, I can. If I want to watch a movie, I can. Feels kind of good.

I do have a show tomorrow night, and one on Friday night, and I'm going into Dream Juice on Sunday, but for today, I get to relax and be sick. Maybe I'll actually be able to get better.

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Okay, there is something you should know about my cat. As much as he is the neediest cat in the world, he wants attention on his own terms, and his own terms only. If he really misses me, he'll let me hold him for a few minutes. But usually, when I pick him up, it's two pats on the head, and he's squirming to get down. Yes, he will nap in my lap, but only when he wants to -- if I try to make him sit in my lap, he won't do it. He is very much the independent, strong-willed type.

Now, I am one of those people who likes to cuddle with their pet. I know, I know, that sounds dirty, but when I'm sleeping, if he chooses to sleep right next to me, I love it. Rest my hand on his back, and we both nod off. It amazes me that he trusts me enough to sleep with my hand on his back, you know? My cat isn't like that very much. If he's sleeping somewhere and I even bend down to give him a kiss, he gets all offended, and will sometimes get up to find another place to sleep.

I tell you all of this to set up what was probably the cutest, sweetest moment I have ever had with my cat.

Last night, I fell asleep on my couch as I have been doing a lot lately. Long about 11:00 or so, I got up to go to bed. "I got up to go to bed" is probably one of my favorite sentences in the English language. Think about it. It's fun. Anyway, I got up to go to bed and found my cat asleep on my bed in my spot. I have a full-size bed, so there is plenty of room for me to have my side and him to have his side. And usually, that's how it works. But he was napping on my side, in my spot, resting on my pillow. I thought turning on the light would make him move. I thought the act of putting on my pajamas might make him move. I thought my one last trip to the bathroom might make him move. I thought kneeling down by the side of my bed and resting my head on him lightly would make him move. I thought kissing his head would make him move. I thought pulling back the covers would make him move. I thought me getting under the covers (on my side of the bed, right smack next to him) would make him move. I thought me lying down almost spooning him would make him move. I thought turning on my alarm clock and turning off the light would make him move. Nope. He stayed exactly where he was. Me lying next to him on about two inches of bed, with my arm draped over him, my face buried in the back of his neck. He went back to sleep.

I laid there with my cat for a few minutes, soaking in the moment, getting to spend a few precious minutes with my cat, all snuggled up warm and cozy, expecting him to get up and relocate at any second. But he just stayed there and let me sleep next to him. Finally, when my arm started to fall asleep (the one under me), I nudged him over to his side of the bed. He was a little miffed, but went back to sleep soon enough.

So yeah, I'm looking forward to my cat's old age when he lets me snuggle with him more, and sometimes when I want to, not just when he needs attention.

I know, I know, this whole entry sounds rather...get your minds out of the gutter, people. He's a cat, for Pete's sake. It was sweet.

Monday, November 07, 2005

Holy crap, it's finally done!!!

Leftover Voices, the film I shot four and a half years ago, is finally finished!

I'm sitting here at work, drinking hot water because it's really cold in here (after a week of being so sweltering hot at work you could barely breathe -- but I loved it, and much prefer that to this), and my character in the film used to drink hot water, so it got me thinking about her and about the film, so I decided to send my pestering e-mail to the director asking how it's going and she told me it's done! They're working on the artwork for the poster and DVD cover and stuff, but the film is done. She wants to set up a screening in December for those of us who still live in Chicago. Holy crap.

I'm so excited to see this movie. I will keep you all posted on when/where you might be able to see it.

I'm so excited!
Wow. So that's how rockstars live.

Blister on my thumb.

Mystery cut on my finger.

General aches in my back.

I'm too old for this shit.

Thursday, November 03, 2005

So I keep getting spam advertising the newest weight loss craze, hoodia. Hoodia is an African cactus that bushmen have been eating for centuries during long hunting trips to stave off hunger. It's all natural, has no side effects, blah, blah, blah. Okay, so here's my thoughts on the deal:

First of all, hooray! Let's go wipe out this plant species from the African desert! Let's deprive the bushmen who actually need it from being able to get it. Hooray!

Okay, fine, that's not exactly how it is working. See, a bunch of scientists took some hoodia and are studying it so as to be able to reproduce it in a lab and make it ready for mass production, synthetically. Hoodia will still exist in the wild. Good. But there's more to it than that.

The bushmen are acutally suing for intellectual property rights. It is their plant, they've been sitting on this gold mine that could cure the world of obesity, they should be in on the profits, right? Right. So that's one piece. The other is I'm sorry, but the synthetic production of whatever chemical it is in the hoodia that makes it work makes me nervous. My guess is that it isn't just one thing; it's probably a lot of the qualities that make the plant work. And when you combine synthetic ingredients with other synthetic ingredients, will it work the same, or will there suddenly be some kind of side effect that will result in millions of people becoming violently ill? And in every article I read, they keep talking about the taste -- when they come up with an effective hoodia pill, it will taste good. It's a pill. You swallow it. It is in your mouth for all of two seconds -- does it really need to taste like chocolate mousse pie? If you're that serious about needing to lose weight, you'll put up with a funky taste for two seconds. Trust me. Flavor should be the least of our worries on this one. How about making it safe and effective? If it was up to me, I'd grow my own hoodia plant in my house under a heat lamp and eat it just like the bushmen do. Synthetic duplication makes me nervous.

Synthetic duplication also makes me nervous because a lot of the products out there on the market right now DON'T HAVE ANY HOODIA IN THEM. They tout the benefits of hoodia, but contain no hoodia. Wait, what? Why advertise it as hoodia if it's really chlorobubonicplaugeiform, you know?

And my second thought is this: oh crap. I can see insecure teenage girls who would have been bulemic now becoming anorexic because hooray! We have a pill that will help you develop anorexia! If you were having problems with self control before, here's your cure! This pill will literally eliminate your appetite, so instead of eating 1200 calories like you were when you wanted to starve yourself before, now you'll feel just as full eating 200 calories a day! And how much do you want to bet that those 200 calories come from foods with no nutritional value? Candy, soda, etc. This is a pill that helps you starve yourself. Just what the American market needs.

I can see how for some people, hoodia would be helpful. Like, I dunno, for the bushmen who go out hunting for weeks at a time, can't carry food with them, and may or may not get to eat every day, depending on how the hunt goes. I can also see how hoodia can and probably will be abused by people who really don't need it, like people who have eating disorders already.

It's about moderation, people. Eat stuff that is good for you in moderation. Exercise in moderation. Not everyone is supposed to look like Christian Bale in The Machinist (which is an excellent film, by the way). Actually, nobody should look like Christian Bale in The Machinist. Every person's body has a size that it is supposed to be for optimum health. Be comfortable with that. Tell the mass media to fuck off and eat the soup AND the salad AND the bread, if that's what you want -- they each have their own health benefits. We need to get over this weight loss obsession, as a culture. I know that obesity is not healthy, but neither are malnourisment or bulemia or anorexia.

Leave the hoodia to the bushmen. Everything has it's place and it's purpose, and you take it out of that place, apply it to other purposes, and bad things are bound to happen.

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

And on a totally unrelated note, happy birthday, little baby Colin!

And congratulations to the happy mommy and daddy. I love you guys and can't wait to meet the new addition to your family!
I don't normally watch Boston Legal, but it was on after Gilmore Girls and House and my taped episode of My Name is Earl last night, so I caught the last half of it. I know a lot of people go ga-ga for James Spader -- he's never really done much for me. But last night's episode was amazing. The case he was trying was about a woman who was suing the government because her brother was killed in Iraq. I seriously wish I had a transcript of James Spader's speeches in this episode. One of the things he said was, "We talk about honoring our soldiers; how about honoring them by caring when one of them dies?" He talked about the fact that even though the war in Iraq is strikingly similar to Vietnam, we are more concerned with Brad and Anglelina, or Terry Schaivo. This war is not being televised like Vietnam was, so it is easy for us to forget about it, to not think about it, to pretend that it isn't really happening. I know that not everything I see on television is true, particularly when it is packaged in a legal drama that ends with two grown men drinking martinis while dressed as flamingos, but I think he had a really valid point. This whole attitude of "If you're not with us, you're against us," or this fear that everyone seems to have about talking about Iraq is disturbing. And probably the most powerful statement he made in the show was something along the lines of "As long as we are allowed to voice differing opinions, what's going on over there will never happen over here."

"If you're not with us, you're against us." Sounds like we're not allowed to voice differing opinions, doesn't it?

I sometimes wish I was more politically minded so that I could talk about this stuff intelligently, but I do other things with my time other than scour newspapers and so on. I do remember a few things from my history classes, though, one of the big ones being that there is an ebb and flow to every major civilization in history. Somebody rises to power, and then is overthrown by somebody else. And that fighting to stay on top usually makes the fallout much worse. Actually, I don't think there has ever been a major civilization that has gone quietly, or slipped into the background for a while to make a comeback later. Maybe a comeback would be possible if they did just slip into the background. But think about it -- Rome ruled the world, and then fell. The Greeks ruled the world, and then fell. France ruled the world, and then fell. England ruled the world, and then fell. China ruled the world, and then fell. The Aztecs ruled, the Mayans ruled, the Incas, the Egyptians, all of these peoples were the major power in the world (or A major power) for some period of time, and then were overthrown. They all survive in some form or another -- France, Italy, Greece, England, Egypt, China, etc. all still exist -- but they don't have the power and control they once did. They still have influence, just not to the extent that they once did.

So here we are in America. One of the younger countries in the world, comparitively speaking. Old enough to feel like we're entitled to our place at the top. Old enough, maybe, to take a step down. Maybe we shouldn't be the mightiest nation in the world. Hell, with the guys in charge right now being proven liars time and time again, maybe this is the best time for America to say, "You know what? We had a good run. We'll let somebody else police the world for a while until we get our shit together, and then we'll be back." I wonder what would happen. I wonder how that would work. If we let ourselves age gracefully instead of fighting it. If we're not overthrown by another people, but just take our hat out of the ring for a bit. Regroup. Rebuild.

Just a thought. Sorry. I woke up thinking, "One year ago today, I tried to change the world around me. So did millions of other people. And a handful of them rigged it so that our voices were silenced. How sad."

Three more years, kids. Three more years...

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

I'm in this really weird place where I am starting to mourn the loss of this job, but also thinking about all of the great things I'll get to do when I don't have this job anymore. For example:

I won't have to drive this route into work every morning. But I probably won't be up early enough to listen to Lin's Bin anymore.

I won't have to dress nicely every day, but I won't have a lot of money to spend on clothes, so I'll have to do a lot more thrift store shopping. And/Or I can open up my scrap fabric bins and start making my own clothes again.

I won't have this lovely, fast internet connection anymore, but if I check my e-mail and stuff less often, that means there will be more of it, right? Or, it means more time spent in Wi-Fi coffee shops.

I won't have to file things anymore. I won't have to schedule meetings. I won't have to pretend that I'm doing something when I'm really not. But I won't have a steady paycheck to show for it.

I won't have somewhere to be everyday, so I'll have to find somewhere to be and something to do. Hopefully another job type thing that will help me pay my bills.

I can do whatever I want to my hair and my "style."

I dunno. I'm still a little bit freaked out about it. I know I'll be okay. I know I'll land on my feet -- I always do. And thank you thank you thank you thank you thank you to my wonderful Texas friend for the uber yummy care package. Thank you to all of you guys for being so supportive. I will do this. I know this is the right thing to do. It's just scary to make a big change like this after five years of consistency, you know?

I'll have to buy all of my own tea.

Monday, October 31, 2005

Happy Halloween, kids!

Whatever you decide to do today, please be safe about it. I probably should have said that before the weekend, huh? Because I'm guessing I'm not the only person who got nice and drunk on Saturday night while wearing something no person in their right mind would wear in public. But isn't that what's so much fun about Halloween anyway? Doing things you wouldn't normally do? Wearing things you wouldn't normally wear?

There is a guy directly outside my window destroying a lot of lovely plant matter. I guess the bunnies won't be coming back now. There's nothing for them to eat.

But yeah, have a safe and happy Halloween. And I'd like to send out a big thank you to all of the Sox fans out there for the 8,000,000 Cubs fan hating e-mails that were in my inbox this morning. You guys are a stand-up bunch and I'm glad you now have the chance to tell the world how much better you are than the rest of us. I wouldn't have known otherwise.

Sorry. Y'all know I'm a Cubs fan. Y'all know I'm a liberal. Y'all know I'm a vegan. Y'all don't have to read my posts if you don't want to; if you disagree with my opinions, that's fine. We can chat about it. But the outright vitriol has no place here. The one thing I said about the Sox was nowhere near as mean as the things you guys have been sending me. I'm happy for you that your team won, and I'm jealous as all hell that you guys get to know what it feels like to have something you love so much do so well. I just choose not to participate in the celebration because I don't love the Sox. And telling me I'm a stupid, ignorant nit-wit is not going to make me love the Sox. And it sure as hell isn't going to make me want to celebrate with you, or even support you in your celebration. Congratulations to your boys. Now why not go celebrate with other Sox fans instead of belittling Cubs fans? Just a thought. And I promise, when the Cubs win, I'll keep my celebrating amongst my Cub fan friends.