Monday, April 30, 2001

Mike, I'm flying to London on Wednesday (or, at least, that's the plan), but I'll be back in Boston at some point during the summer. My grandmother would be very disappointed otherwise. I'm planning to be in London for one week; if I can afford to, I'll stay longer. And then...maybe NC? Upma, Zach, let me know if early May is good or bad, I know Thad will be encountering fatherhood first hand real soon now.

Zach & the rest of the NC crew: the Iguanas are going to Charlotte (Double Door on July 12); Asheville (Asheville Music Zone on July 13) and North Carolina Museum of Art (Raleigh). You should check them out if you have time. Steph or Shelly have probably seen them. I just know their stuff from other people, and they are good.

Yeah, Lucinda is a strange bird. My friend Christine was all defending her, talking about how she is a poet, right up there with Dylan. Blah blah. I guess I just have so much more respect for the musician because he/she loves music. And who is all about the performance and the people. For eample. Jimmy Lafave. He is all about the music. He has like 6 or more CD's out. He does tributes to Guthrie and Dylan. He closes with "Have I Told You Lately" and dedicates it to the crowd. He performed in KPFT's backyard as a fundraiser, and the equipment is completely low budge, since KPFT is a non-profit. Well, they didn't have a sound monitor or whatever the hell you call it, and Jimmy asks the crowd if they can hear him, and he says, "Yeah, I can't really tell if I am ok, but I am used to the old days when I didn't have any of this fancy type equipment. It's just more reason to give to the station to keep it going." LOVE that. And, he does not need sheet music in front of him to perform.

Zach, what is your mailing address? I think I still have a Lucinda Williams article to send to you. I'll also see about taping some KPFT stuff for you. I think you'll like it.

Also, for all of you Spinal Tap fans. They are going on a five city tour. Not sure when/where, but I heard it the other day. Jonatha Brooks is coming to Houston, but I may be in New Orleans that weekend. Sucks.

Happy 68th to Willie.

Upma - I am so with you on the floating. I met my new crush on Friday night and hung out with him last night. And even though I'm sleep deprived and hungover (a pretty picture I know), I can't stop smiling, and I practically jumped out of bed this morning when the alarm went off at 6:30am. That never happens. It's all early so who knows, but I love this feeling.

jt. remember how you mentioned "floating" when you met julia? yes. well. i think i get it now. not only am i floating... i also can't seem to wipe this really stupid grin off my face!!

I saw lucinda williams a few years back. She played an encore that was longer than her set. Apparently, she and the band had nowhere to go because by the time she was cruising into the third hour they ran out of songs and started doing these looooong, lame blue jams. Don't get me wrong I love Lucinda Williams. And I dig the blues. But, sheesh. No one felt comfortable leaving because they understood that they were seeing something rare, real live spontaneous music, a band really "feeling it." By the end, people around me had this dumbfounded look that I'm sure was meant to express "wow, what a night" but instead looked like "please stop stepping on my IV drip." We were tired.

Saw Lucinda Williams this weekend at the International Festival. She was really good, but I am bothered by one thing. She had SHEET MUSIC the entire performance (a little over an hour). She has about 5 records, and as far as I am concerned, she should know her shit. That was a big disappointment to me. I dunno -- maybe I am just way too hard on people. Hell, I could've jumped on stage and sang every freakin' word to some of her old stuff. Anyways, I'm still going to buy her new album, still going to tout her "Car Wheels" album, and if she is ever in the vicinity again, I will pay to hear her live again. I did meet a funny couple from Canada which was very cool.

In other news, I ran into two of my former flames, if you can believe that, at the same festival. First I saw Michael/Granola, and I met his dad who was in town from Vancouver, WA. That was bizarre, but it was fine. The thing that shook me up was when I saw Nick (a.k.a., the boy; Nick the Dick). I had one of those strange feelings a week or so ago that I would run into him, but I dismissed it as a mind game I was playing with myself. I guess that Nick is just one of those guys who you will always feel a little something for (it was clear that he was feelin' the same thing), but you're just bad for each other. The song "You're no good, you're no good, you're no good, baby you're no good . . ." comes to mind. Rrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrgh! Not to worry though, I was smooth like butta (i.e., butter), and I didn't do anything stupid. Kept it short and simple. And he went walking away wanting more the Joe. Ah, now I am just being full of crap (insert big smile here).

Must get back to work. I did catch "Diary of Bridget Jones" which was awesome. Go singletons!

Sunday, April 29, 2001

duuuude. i think the never ending film project finally got finished! thank goodness!
ps. elvis is a rockstar

Well, I made it to Boston, and now I'm in North Andover. It's like being on a different planet. My sister can't get over it; it's so unreal to her. That this exists fascinates her. She was thrilled by a squirrel sighting. She leaves on Wednesday or Thursday; I have to check flight availabilities. Mike, are you swamped this week?

We just saw a "My Real Baby" doll commercial. Wow. Develop "nurturing feelings" and seriously unreal expectations of real babies.

The everyday miracle of a baby. Keep enjoying the mashed potatoes.

Planning to head to London on Wednesday or Thursday; have to check flights and hostel availability.

Friday, April 27, 2001

in about a week i will have a baby. it's wierd, i'm not scared. i'm nervous. i'm not even so much worried. i know it's not going to be easy, but i can't wait. it's like chrismas, to use a not very accurate analogy. i can't really explain what it feels like. after approximately may 7 nothing in my life will be the same. but that seems like an over-estimation. at the same time it doesn't. i'm going to continue enjoying mashed potatoes just the same. my life is not over and i don't have to be an old person.

may 7 is a the due date and it's full moon. so that's pretty well it.

Thursday, April 26, 2001

i can’t say that there a lot of things in the world that i absolutely hate. but two things that i’m totally sure that i hate are snakes and bugs, ESPECIALLY spiders.

having said that... i’ve been keeping a “pet” spider in my bathroom for a couple weeks. he showed up one day, build himslef a little web thing-y and is just chillin in his corner. i’m not sure what he’s eating to survive. under normal circumstances, i would’ve killed the spider immediately upon sighting him. (was that even english?) for some reason... i’ve let this little guy live. and now... i don’t know what to do. i want to kill him. but i feel like it’s more cruel for me to kill him after observing him for so long. then again... to let him live... let another spider roam the earth... YUCK. i need to clean my bathroom this weekend. i kinda hope he dies on his own before i get to him.

Steph, you are TOO cute. Love it. Let me just tell you. When I first decided to live by myself, I was scared shitless. And the first week was a little tough, but after that, smooth sailing. My next potential room mates will be one of the following: dog, plastic plants (I have a black thumb) or a husband (way, way far away, although I hear one of the Mull's is a taker ;) Anyways, you are a good woman to give me advanced notice. I think it is so funny that Austin people come to Houston for IKEA. If you wanted to make a weekend out of it, I have plenty o' space. The first (5-6) and third (19-20) weekends are bad, but those other weekends are good. In fact, Robert Earl Keen's Texas Uprising is all day on the 26th. Guests include Los Lobos, Jack Ingram, Charlie Robison, Slaid Cleaves, many more. Don't feel like you have to plan your schedule around me; I'll do what I can on the day you choose.

Michael, I love that you use the word "drama" to describe things. I think I'll incorporate it into my lingo.

Upma/Shelly - that is too funny that we all own guitars that we can't play! Ty-pical.

Last night I spent my time treking all over the damn city searching for the last FedEx drop-off box. No interesting accompanying stories though. Just bitching to bitch.

Thad, good to hear from you.

upma - the place is a little north of the UT area and I plan on investing in a hide-away couch so I can be a proper hostess next time friends come to town (in my last place - well, it's my current place, but soon to be my last place, the living room is giving over to my roommmates stuff and you have to be not so picky about dog hair to want to crash there). Now, I welcome travelers. Well, I just need to finish packing, moving, unpacking first.

Zach - you are inspiring quite the catfights.

Wednesday, April 25, 2001

zachary. if you remember... i said yes immediately to your proposal a year ago. even siad i didn't need a ring. (maybe that was my mistake). richard murillo was witness to this event. that's all i gotta say. i was supposed to be first, baby.

thadeus. HIIIII!!!!!! (your bro is a putz) :-D (that's a fun word). putz, putz putz.
hey, listen...i think you would be a great addition to this (cyber) girl band... i don't think you ought to shave the beard. and (as things are lookin now) you'll probably be the only real musician in the band... (shelly angie and i all own guitars that we can't play!) so you gotta lotta teachin to do...

louise. i'm ALL for embarrasing zach in public like that! let's do it!! in fact... ooohhhhhh...... how do those evil's laugh?? muuuhhaaaahhaaaahhaaaaaa :->
so, you'll be here when summer is in full effect, huh? it's gonna be hot.

michael. "seize him." what??? you're confusing me.

steph. i am so excited about you're new place!! i can't wait to come to austin again and hang with you... i love that city so much. are you living anywhere i'm familiar with? (downtown-ish, UT-ish) or are you more in the rolling hill-sy part? jack-ee lives on W. 41st st. near 33 degrees.

EVERYBODY is talking about Momento. it screened at sxsw... but i didn't get a chance to see it then... Zach--- do you think we'll get it in greensboro? or is this gonna have to be a trip to chapel hill? that'll be ok... i would like to go hang out there anyway... maybe get some shoes too. and persian food. or good indian food. and turkish coffee. have you guys ever had turkish coffee? wow.

Zach, all I'll say is you never know what tomorrow may bring. And it would be a lot of fun, when I visit, to have me and Upma screaming at each other in public over you. "No, I'M gonna be Mrs Ortega! YOU gave your phone number to two guys at that party!" Hiss. Spit.

One of the nurses at the dentist office was given the wrong folder before seeing me. She kept calling me "Freddy" which I didn't get. I just thought she was being cute. Eventually, I noticed the name on the folder was "Alfredo Ortega." For like ten minutes this woman thought I was named "Alfredo Ortega." I guess this isn't as funny if you don't know me. I look like Pugsly Addams all grown up.

By the way, Louise, I'm very disappointed you won't be (the first) Mrs. Ortega, but I understand that you must be free. Upma, I'd say that you are next up to meet me at the alter, but I know you're all talk. Looks like I'm alone again.

I love you all.

Okay, sorry I haven't written in a while. I've been busy looking for housing in Austin. A task that I didn't think would require New York City effort, but it has. Reading the classifieds first thing every morning, making gillions of phonecalls, returning kagillions of phonecalls, driving around looking for rent signs (and pissing off drivers behind me for going slow), just nearly getting someplace, having a roommate, not having a roommate, having a different roommate, maybe but I can't commit so if you find someplace better don't feel bad about me roommate, putting money down to no avail, being tempted to steal all the remaining applications on a place (but not cause of karma and all), being told by an apartment searcher (after giving them my price range) "you must not be too concerned with quality". But the last few weeks finally paid off, I found out this morning that I got a place, a real first-choice type of one. So in a few weeks I'll be moving into a cute one-bedroom apartment with my very own washing machine and dryer and dishwasher. Yes this made me sing LOUDLY with more enthusiasm than skill to every soft rock song that came on the radio as I drove away ("Magic" by olivia newton john - love the Xanadu omen, etc.), but what have you. I have had roommates for so long, and I'm looking forward to making this space all mine. Messy when I want. Clean when I want. Trying different decorating schemes. I once saw pink astroturf covering walls - luv it. Dust off my sewing machine and attempt some yellow curtains. Finally get around to hanging up some photos I made in my alternative photo process class. Find out who planed the vegetable garden in the back of the six-plex and offer to help. I could go on but I've already bored my friends for too long with "the housing search" so I'll cut myself off.
Angie Joe - I'll be coming to Houston sometime in the next month to do some damage at Ikea to help outfit my new place, hopefully you won't be overbooked and we can hang. (I get the feeling that with you, I'll need to plan a month in advance).
Going to see Memento tonight - can't wait.
I saw Bridget Jones's Diary. I really enjoyed it. I read both of Helen Fielding's books and the movie captures the heart of the book excellently. And I now have a huge crush on Colin Firth. meow, that man is (sigh), he just is.
As for this POP band, I have no musical talent or instruments, but I have carried gear/sold merch for many a band, I offer my services as POP roadie.

i'm not a girl, but i will wear a dress and i play drums, bass and other instruments badly. i love pop. love pop. if i need to i might shave the beard. i wanna be in a band that sounds just like superdrag or promise ring. maybe with girls.

ok . waitasecond. stop. zachary. you cannot go proposin to someone else!! this is not Utah.

I saw Pollock in Milwaukee and we were all stunned by it. It's a good film. That's what happens when people take the time to think it out and let it develop. Awesome. Although it did make me wonder if I want to go into Art Therapy, as it clearly does not work for everyone.

Saw Memento last week; it's another good film. Just the way that it was told was amazing to me; discussing it afterward Susan and I agreed that it was the only way you could really understand what the lead was feeling. It makes me think Hitchcock, but I'm not enough of a student of film to say why.

Zach, I'd marry you if it didn't change my tax status. Plus I'm having fun being the token single, roaming around and doing things that sane married folk don't do (like sitting in a Chicago bus station at 3 am or eating biscuits with sausage gravy).

Those of you who have not seen Zach and I interact in the meat world: we bicker like we've been married for 30 years. Hey, we could go straight from the wedding to the divorce court! What should we fight over for custody?

Weezie, thanks for the compliment ;) I feel lame replying back with a, "Uh, you're pretty, uh, cool, uh, yourself." But you are!

Hey guys. I actually own TWO guitars (one acoustic, one electric) but I can't play either. Long story. I'm sure that Zach would be willing to let you guys use his amps and such for the big day.

Has anyone seen the Bridget Jones movie yet? I'm dying to get a group of girls together for it.

Last night I got a wild hair up my butt. I decided that damn it, I wanted sweet potato pie. I mulled over where I could score me a scrumptious taste and couldn't think of anywhere. So I looked up about three recipes, combined a little of the three, and made a hot damn sweet potato pie last night. I'm so fucking weird sometimes.

Tuesday, April 24, 2001

hey i don't really play guitar, but i do it really badly, upma, i wanna play POP too. we can be the band at louise and zach's wedding.

Hey, Louise, you and I can get married this summer. If you want to.

you guys ever heard of that band Magnapop? they’re kinda old school indie-pop (meaning... early 90’s). well. after listening to them again, i’ve decided that if i ever get good enough on the bass guitar (which i’m gonna start foolin around with in about 8 days) that i want to be in a girl pop band. i don’t care if it’s pop-punk, or indie-pop. or slightly both. the key ingredient here is p.o.p.

in the north, we called Coca-Cola, “pop.” when i moved to virginia, everyone laughed at me when i asked for a pop. they didn’t understand what i was asking for. saying “pop” was a lot of fun.

i’m very addicted to coke. it’s a bad addiction to have, because not only is the addiction bad, but the product is too. all that sugar! it makes it hard to git skinny again. Lightspeed, (the graphic design place that i will be working for) provides unlimited free Coke. this will no doubt be an exercise in self-discipline.

i am trying to negotiate a free-lance gig. i hope i get it, i’m super excited about it... the gig is to film a commercial for this alternate/free newspaper in the area called the Rhino Times. the design company that is in direct competition with Lightspeed, asked me if i wanted to film this for them. i felt a little uneasy about it because 1. i’m not THAT competent on film. (video is a lot easier to fix if you mess up... film is an art that i just haven’t gotten enough practice in). 2. i didn’t want to have this be a “conflict of interest” with MY boss. it all works out though because 1. if i mess up the filmin too badly, i get to keep the extra stock and fool around with it... and if it works out, i get the $$$ (which is gonna be A LOT). and 2. i talked to my boss today about doing freelance work and mentioned this particular gig, and he’s pretty cool with it. i LOVE that the people i spend so much time with are so understanding and patient and kind. i like kind people.

The Rhino Times is not a newspaper that i know too much about. Zach might be able to say a few more words on this than i could. all i know is that there’s one section in every issue called “Sound of the Beep.” all the section is, is whatever messages the Rhino Times get on their answering machine is printed up... most of the time the statements are direct comments on the last issues articles, sometimes there are HEATED debates that last for weeks. and sometimes, there are just the FUNNIEST random comments. one time (was this you zach?) someone called in and said “you should all listen to WUAG.” (that’s the radio station that we work(ed) for).

i watched Pollock tonight. wow. you know... it is a good movie. it’s a good story. it’s slow-paced... but it’s one of the movies in which the slowness works for me. it’s over two hours long as well... i felt it... but i didn’t mind it, cuz i was enjoying the movie. i don’t know too much about modern art... or art. but, i still enjoyed it a whole lot... it’s intriguing. the acting and the cinematography are also really great.

Flying to Boston on Thursday. Just found out my uncle's brother is on his deathbed in Chattanooga, so my aunt is freaking out just a bit. This is going to be interesting.

Angie Joe, one of these days we have GOT to hang together, because you speak to my heart - rice and gravy! The New York Times! I love you!

One of my friends from college gets married today; wedding will be in October. I'm so happy for them I know I'm going to cry at the ceremony. Had an interesting email conversation with another friend who observed that we have, collectively, begun moving out of Pairing Off into Weddings. Next up, Baby Showers and I hope we can skip Divorces. He mused that with all this spring love in the air, he feels like getting hitched, too. People really must change; he was such a gigolo in college. I thought he was going to be one of the last holdouts with me...*sigh* guess I'll just have to be the token single.

Ditto on Mike's comment!

Upma, you should include yoru last post in your feel good journal. The prose about having more confidence in yourself is really moving. That is great news about the man. Still waiting to find out more on my squeeze "Boston." He's out of town for another two weeks, comes back for a week, then goes back out for another 3 weeks (all for work). Ah, patience always was a virtue that I needed to work on.

Zach, thanks for the update. I was afraid to ask, because you hadn't really said anything, but my curiosity got the best of me.

Weezie, it always SOUNDS like I do more than what I do.

Let me take a moment to talk about one of my loves. I have several small things in life that make me go "huzzah huzzah" as my friend Denise would say - pretty flowers, visiting with good friends, cool stationary, a great CD, funky shoes and smell good lotion. The big thing that I want to talk about is the New York Times. I LOVE that damn newspaper -- it's almost as good as rice and gravy. The features are just so incredible, and you can always find something in there that you wouldn't typically find anywhere else. For example, over the last week or two I've read about how women in Japan are becoming more assertive (one woman actually kicked her in-laws out of her home - wow!), the changing look of the suburbs (either you're way the hell out in BFE or the younger, more hipsters are buying older homes in the city), how the number of abortions are up in India because of the availability of ultrasound, how the blues is dying in the Mississippi Delta, how the water supply in Texas is rapidly depleating (water exploration today is what oil/gas exploration was 50 years ago), and a story on school vouchers and how it is making education more commercialized (one public school district went so far as to take out a 30-minute infomercial). Anyways, the best part about the online version is that if you register, you can access the entire paper for free (be sure to check the "don't sell my information to other stupid asses" so that your inbox is not bombarded with child porn, unless you really enjoy child porn that is). One of my fav features is you can find the most e-mailed articles for the last few days (those are typically the most interesting).

I know I am preaching to the choir when I say this, but education is key. And keeping up to date on the issues sets us apart from animals. A-men brotha.

Monday, April 23, 2001

zachary! hush.
you guys shoulda SEEN The Boss’ first show. everyone who was there, was there to see them. and they sounded GOOD... even though zach got shocked in the mouth with the stupid mic. (btw: the show should be on may 31st... i think that’s a thursday... i need to tell jason that for sure tomorrow... if you see me, you might wanna remind me again).

Shelly, of all the things, I watched Oprah today. Today's show ( was about lifestyle makeovers, and part of it was about the awareness that life is speaking to you at every moment.

You have got some fantastic dialogue is all I can say.

JT, you rock. Upma, way to go! Angie Joe, do you ever sleep? Zach, you are so punk rock.

April 23, 2001 Monday
Need More, Indiana

Last night we were sitting on the couch watching “Nurse Betty” when we heard a cat crying outside. Susan and Brad have three large, healthy cats and an exuberant Cheseapeake Bay retriever, all of whom were indoors when we heard the meowing. Didn’t see anything when we looked out, until the cat jumped up on the window screen over the couch. Brad went outside to investigate, and called back into the house that it was a little black cat, with her tail cut off. Susan grabbed rubbing alcohol and tea tree oil while I grabbed paper towels and kept the dog inside. The wound is a few days old, no signs of infection or fever. She’s thin, but her coat is full and glossy. She was very, very stressed out and hungry; couldn’t keep still and kept rubbing against all of us. She got tea tree oil all over my sweater, which Koa (the dog) licked off.

It was pretty clear that she wasn’t going to let us leave her outside, so we spent almost three hours getting the dog settled down while Brad held the cat. Koa likes cats, and all he really wanted to do was lick her injury; she was not interested in having her injury licked by a large, waggling dog. We are trying to come up with names more original than Stumpy, Stubby, Lucky, or George (based on Koa’s “I will hug her and squish her and love her and call her George” routine). I’ve been calling her Shortstop and Half Pint; Brad calls her Segment. None of these names fit her just yet, but there’s time. Susan called the Humane Association this morning, and her description wasn’t on file. The animals that live in this house are walking advertisements for the loving home that this is; she knew what she was doing when she threw herself against the screen. Koa has simmered down and is behaving himself very nicely around her; the feline matriarchs are still not pleased, but two of them have deigned to enter the house. The stump is unnerving; it’s healed over but there is a piece of bone protruding, which looks uncomfortable, and the edges are a bit ragged. I crocheted a stump cozy with a drawstring last night, but she shook it off quickly. I don’t think she’s ready to have it covered over yet.

How Shortstop wound up in the woods with her tail missing is a story that can’t be pretty. Brad and I were sitting on the porch with her last night, looking her over, and he sadly decided that it was most likely caused by a human. The cut looks too clean for a car accident or animal attack, and it’s too close to her body to have been a trap. There are no other signs of damage, including to her claws. I didn’t sleep very well last night, thinking about it, especially with her walking in and out of the room, meowing, too restless to stay still for very long. She would rub up against me, purring, lie down, and then get up and walk around, then come back again. This morning, she followed me around, but has been settled down for most of the day, sleeping on the couch. Koa did manage to lick the injured area, to Shortstop’s amazement. I’ve been feeding her small amounts of dry food periodically and making sure she’s been drinking fresh water. She’s in good hands with Susan and Brad, but I’ll still worry about her when I leave.

to be beautiful if it ruins my life

as i entered the bus and walked down the center aisle i had to walk between two women sitting in the first seats on opposite sides of the bus yelling at each other.
"fuck you"
"no, fuck you. you don't know what you're talking about. you have no idea what i've been through."
at this point, the bus driver, an older man who probably looks very kind and grandfatherly most of the time, turns around and yells a very stern, "HEY! don't make me do something about this!"
i've gotten a ringside seat by this point and i'm staring over the newspaper i'm pretending to read. the bus lurches away and the women glare at each other and mutter under their breaths.
the woman on the right is an older woman in several layers of baggy mismatched clothes. she looks more worn out than her attire.
the woman on the left is huddled up into the corner, feet on the seat, taking as little space as possible, her bag held defensively behind her crossed arms. she has spiky purple hair and all the punk accoutrements. she looks very young.
after a few seconds of hostile looks the woman on the right mutters, "can't understand it....STUPID!"
"why would you understand it? maybe it's because i'm a LESBIAN! why do you think you know what i've been through?"
"i've been though it think you have it hard,ever been addicted to the rock?" (shakes her head)
at this point both women begin to cry, the woman on the left into her jittery hand, the other sniffles and tries to pretend that she isn't crying.
"i can't understand it. it isn't even attractive."
"why would i want to look attractive? i want to look as unattractive as possible!"
they once again exchange warning glances. then each turns halfway toward their window, answering only partly to each other.
"but you have a beautiful face..."
"what good is it to be beautiful if it ruins my life?"
the woman on the right keeps shaking her head. "but you look too young."
the woman on the left chokes out a response about being kicked out of her parents house.
the woman on the right rubs her eyes again rapidly, and invites the girl to join her at the next stop. the girl declines saying that she is meeting friends. they get off at consecutive stops.

today at work, a coworker ran upstairs from the parking basement and informed the IT Guy that someone was sitting in IT Guy's car. the next thing i learn, IT Guy, who used to be military police, has tackled the man attempting to steal his car, and stood on him until another worker used plastic ties to bind him until police arrive.

i saw a man today walking down the opposite side of the street. he was tall and walked, jangling, like his joints mere made of chain. he was wearing a suit complete with spats and a cane which he swung wildly around him as he walked. he wore a top hat with a huge pink feather in the band and his black hair poufed out of the bottom of the inverted stovepipe. he jangled to one end of the block, swung around and strutted back. on the way he fell three times. dramatic charlie chaplin kind of falls. each time he'd lurch forward and tumble sometimes on an elbow, sometimes a knee. then he'd rise and brush himself off managing to look both sheepish and dignified. and with a nod to the cars passing on the street, continue, arms swinging, until the next tumble.
i am not certain if it was some sort of street theater. or if he was just really drunk.

i think life is sending me messages. but they are encrypted in a code i haven't cracked.

I'm at Thad's house this afternoon waiting on him to return from buying a
cellphone. A baby phone. I can't believe that the baby is on two weeks away.
Sheesh. Heavy. Last night we had a baby shower for Meredith and Thad. All
his friends showed up and most of our relatives. It was a really good time.
I think everyone enjoyed themselves. My brother is very well-loved and
deserves to be.

My grandmother, who was living with my parents, is moving into a rest home
today. My mother is very broken up about it. i wish there was something I
could do for her, but there isn't. Its hard to watch someone go through this.
But, the time has come and she has to go to the home. There's nothing more
my parents can do. Its beyond them now.

A few weeks ago Angie asked about the band. i didn't answer because I'm lazy
not because I didn't want to talk about it. Its going very well actually. We
have three songs solid and three more in various stages of completion. Upma's
planning a show to benefit her film and we've been invited to play. By then
we should have seven songs I think and 30-40 minute set. Its all been fun and
its turning out well. We're writing really odd songs I think. Only one has a
standard verse, chorus, verse structure and even that one is a little
different. One is a constant build, no chorus. Another has these weird vocal
placements like only singing on the second verse, second bridge, and last
chorus. Its been interesting to see how the others want to do these things.
It not like they're planned this way. It's all been very natural. My only
lingering concern is that Nathan (our drummer) said that he wants to write the
words to some music he wrote and we've just learned. I'm a little wary of
singing someone else's words. First of all, i'm not much a singer, so I'm not
sure he'll write stuff I can sing. And two, he's not much of a singer either.
I've noticed (in other stuff he's written for himself) that he has a tendency
to sing the guitar part as the vocal melody without realizing it. We'll see
how it turns out.

The other band, the one I was so worried about, has just found a singer, Jon
from Zegota. And they sound good, but when Zegota reconvenes in December I
think they'll be left cold. the ghoul punks that also play in our house are
really great too. I'm surprised by how much they've done in a small amount of
time. I'm proud of those guys.

But, being an insecure and jealous type of guy, I am a little uneasy about the
whole thing. Our band is not-very-punk and a little weird. I'm not sure how
we'll go over. The other band (no name yet) and the ghoul punks (the Crimson
Specter) are more crowd-pleasers. Its hard not to be the hot shit, when
that's what you want to be, but I like the stuff we're doing and I hope other
people will too.

well... i think they're gonna give me an MFA next month. i think they're being kinda easy on me... but oh well. i guess i won't complain about it. (hahaha)

i'm going to have a MASTERS DEGREE.

gabba gabba hey.

Shelly, I finally got the INFAMOUS letter. Getting any sort of communication from that woman is always a pleasure. I'll save my commentary for whenever we have another long, drawn out phone conversation about nothing.

Michael - why don't you and Shelly just buy tickets the day of the game outside of the stadium? That way you can avoid UPS costs AND Ticketmaster changes. Hell, you can sometimes even talk the nasty scalper down.

Upma, you go girl! Forget the ex - you have two other catches in the queue! Good luck with your presentation. Kick ass and take names!

Weezie, I really enjoy your travel updates. I'll have to check out your postings.

I don't know where this weekend went. The highlight was I went to my first crawfish boil of the season. Am probably going to the James Taylor concert at the end of August. Will be having visitors the first and third weekend of May. Trying to plan a week trip home. Six days till Lucinda. That's all for now.

Sunday, April 22, 2001

in 13 more hours i will present my thesis film to my thesis committee. i'm scared.
it's not perfect... and it needs a little more tweaking... (i mean, more than i can do in the next 13 hours). but maybe my professors will overlook some of that and pass me anyway. i sure hope so.

i went to a crazy party last night. as mike f says.. DRAMA! truly. i gave 2 boys my phone #. apparently i hit the cream of the crop last night... because these 2 boys are possibly 2 of THE BEST catches in greensboro. they've both been described to me as "a nice guy who always gets shoved aside." well... i hope that one of them calls me. (they both said they would). i do have one that i favor more than the other... but that's just cuz i know him a little better. i was also really mean and really flirty with the old crush. (not really an "old" crush... but as far as this goes. he's old news, right?) well... i may need to apologize to him... i think i said some mean things to him. but i also told him again that i have "a major crush" on him.
yep.. i said it. (who had too much wine to drink last night?! me! me! me!)

i'm really tired. not sure if i'm even coherent. gotta finish the music. ugh.

i'll let you know how it goes tomorrow.

by the way... i know that only one of you can probably make this... but you're all invited:

WHO: me. (upma)
WHAT: film screening (of lowball, my thesis film project)
WHERE: Jarell Lecture Hall, UNCG (it's a side entrance to the Jackson Library)
WHEN: Monday April 30th at 8pm
WHY: cuz the handbook sez i have to

lowball is a quirky short (under 10 minutes) about a little love triangle. it all takes place in a pool hall/bar.
the film was shot mostly on location at College Hill Sundries and includes music by local bands, All Night and Malabaster.
bring your friends.

Here's the first phase a little project Julia and I are working on:

we've written two line songs for each peep and we're in the process of creating a flash program where you can place peeps in different envormoments 9i.e. in fornt of famous architecture or inside interiors we've gotten from 70's design books. New Peeps will be posted soon, we're both making 5 a day for the next month. Enjoy.

Friday, April 20, 2001

The email journal routine has become a touch to complicated. Henceforth, I will publish my journal entries at

and maybe I'll keep up with it more frequently. And even, one of these days, change the template (if I ever figure out how to...this from someone who taught Johnny how to use html).

On Wed. I went to a town hall meeting for KPFT - the station that I love so much. They are part of the Pacifica Network which is Berkeley based. I believe there are about 8 other Pacifica networks in the country. Apparently, there is quite the controversy with KPFT within the Pacifica network. It is hard to say if the protesters were large in number, b/c when people are vocal, it tends to give you the impression that their numbers are bigger than what they actually are.

Anyways, I vaguely was aware of the issues, but last night was my change to hear both sides. I was the outsider looking in, because I have only been here two years, so no, I don't know what the days of old were like. But there always is a radical group of people who just are constantly pissed off. After listening to about 15 of them speak (each person was given 2 minutes), I finally was able to piece together the agenda. Admittedly, the protesters did have some good points. KPFT does heavily focus more on music than programming. And they could use more local news, with more diversity. But, in the station's defense, they have a limited budget and a limited staff - as with many non-profits.

All of it was pretty ridiculous. The protesters were just pissed off, and when it was their turn to speak it was all emotion (i.e., little to no reason). One person used his two minutes to say that there were several issues, but that the meeting wasn't long enough (except he was yelling, veins popping out and all, and he used a lot more words rather than even outlining what his issues were). Another person wasted his time on reading the lawsuit brief aloud (for future reference: make a copy of the brief, pass it out and then highlight points). Another person even went so far to say, "I call for your immediate resignation because you're a corporate puppet . . ." Keep in mind that the board members are all volunteer - in fact, it probably costs them to participate. Other ridiculous things . . . protesters in the past have made threatening calls and visits to board members at their HOMES, last year someone tried to set the station on fire, etc., etc.

I am a firm believer in protesting what you feel is wrong, but there is a method. You don't have to go around committing arson and assault.

Tuesday, April 17, 2001

Upma, the best advice I have gotten about being blue: "It feels like it will never end, but it does." I know that feeling of wanting it to hurry up so you can get it out of the way. Keep writing and drink a lot of water.

I can't get a flight into Boston for at least a week, and I can't get a flight to London until Monday night, so I have plenty of time to revamp my luggage. I did two weeks in Ireland and Scotland with a backpack - not a big frame one, just your basic student backpack - and I'd like to get close to that again. The sister meeting me in Boston is all twitterpated over how the heck is she going to survive on what I told her to pack. I reminded her that she wants to go shopping, and she perked right up. This is going to be interesting. Leihua and I have never shared much in the way of common interests (example: in high school, I was hanging out with the punks, skaters, chess club, and gamers. She was a cheerleader). For me, we'll hit the Museum of Fine Arts. For her, we'll eat chowder and lobster and go shopping. And it's going to be great.

i have started and erased a few posts the last few days... i've been kinda down... and whatever i started writing to you guys always made me cry! it could just be the PMS or all the stress and pressure that i feel right now. or both. probably both. i'm going to have another nervous breakdown in the next couple of days... i wish it would just happen so i could move on in peace.

i too have my last academic paper ever and my thesis film project. i secretly wish that my MFA degree would give me "doctor" status. i feel like i'm not living up to family expectations. oh well.

i think that being out of school will be so healthy for me. better than exercising and eating a lot of carrots. although... i'll probably start doing a lot more of that too anyway. but... being out of school means less stress which means less moodiness which means happier upma which means happier upma's friends. i must agree with JT-- there is certainly something to be said for earning a terminal degree. i wonder if i ever will go back to school. at this point i can't fathom it at all. i know it sounds dumb to want to go back to school after you already have ONE termainal degree. but mine's only an MFA. having a PhD... now that would BE something.

anyway. the film project looks better than it did a few days ago. it'll be an ok film. i really just want to get on the next few projects. i'm totally over this thing.

JT, the dual processor didn't help with editing software either... until now. i'm happy with my stuff though... it serves me and my purposes well.

i've never heard of Patriots day.

i want to marry Blake Schwartzenbach.

Upma, my G4 is not the dual processor. i skipped out on that because it doesn't really help for audio processing which is the main reason i have my super computer. it's been invaluable the last couple of weeks. last wednesday i had an interactive piece for three music boxes and computer performed. i was working on my G4 programming for about 3 weeks prior all the way up to about 2 hours before the concert. it went well though. lots of stuff piling up at the end of the semester. the summer (regardless of whether the weather ever recognizes it) will be fun and sweet and full of creative endeavor. Buffalo has mild summers with a minimal amount of insects (including those trumped up west nile carrying mosquitos) and the June in Buffalo festival is coming up. i have to write what very well be my last academic paper ever. there's something to be said for earning a terminal degree. julia and i have been working on a project called PEEP. it should be net ready soon. i'll let you guys know when it happens

Would someone explain to me how the CrushLink thing works? I got one of those "someone has a crush on you" emails, and I'm really not interested in giving them information that can be used to deluge me with even more crap mail - I have filters up and STILL I usually get 40 emails per day, 38 of which I automatically delete without reading.

It snowed lightly last night, and I actually leaped out of bed this morning to get all bundled up and run outside. The May apples and strawberries look pretty unhappy; otherwise it was beautiful - sparkly, fluffy, fairy snow, on leaves and spiderwebs and porch railings. All gone now; the sky was clear and blue when I was outside losing all feeling in my face, but it's clouding up and looks like we may get another snowfall today. I spent yesterday running around Bloomington and spending too much money (1. Yarn store, 2. Pygmalion's Art Supply Store); when I heard the weather forecast yesterday, I said "I'm staying in." My friends have a concern that I might get bored...hah! I have pounds of yarn! Ecotech - 60% recycled cotton, 40% recycled other stuff. Not usually available through retail; the woman who owns Yarns Unlimited gets mill ends. Combined with the naturally dyed yarn I got from Shelly, I should be able to make *something* nifty. And I'd better do it soon; I need to trim my luggage down to one carry-on bag so I can fly to London from Indianapolis instead of stopping in Boston and dropping off my stuff.

I can't move to Bloomington, as much as I like it - too many local merchants have seen my platinum MasterCard. I always feel like explaining that my senior year of college is the real reason I got boosted to platinum. Especially the part where my photography class was ordering a huge amount of paper over the phone and I was the only one with a credit card. Once in a while I get a small boost out of snicking it down onto the counter - usually when I'm wearing my jeans and cat-hair coated sweater and getting treated like scum.

Mike, those Aussies were a bunch of wankers.

there is no good reason to explain the fake mustache on the floor of my bathroom this morning. like the rest of my life.

No Patriots' Day in Texas or Louisiana as far as I know. What do you do to celebrate? BTW, those Aussies WERE jack asses.

Speaking of holidays, Michael's question reminds me of a story from this weekend. Tinnie, one of my silly aunts, asked my landlord (a London native) if Easter was celebrated in England . . . I wanted to hide my head under the table at that point. This is the same aunt who asked me what the differences were between Judaism, Catholicism and Protestantism and who thought (after my lengthy explaination) that MLK Jr. single-handedly started the Protestant Reformation.

Monday, April 16, 2001

Phew. Things have been hec-tic. Yesterday I had a late lunch/early dinner Easter party. It was originally just going to be a small gathering but by the end of the day 6 people were crammed into my tiny apartment - including two friends, my aunt, my 76 year old apartment manager and my landlord (two different people). I made a brisket for the first time EVER, baked mac and cheese and an olive Mediterranean loaf in my bread machine. Others brought vino, salad, squash casserole and choc chess pie. It was so nice because it FELT like a holiday. I even made personalized Easter baskets for everyone (one friend is on that Atkins diet so I put fruit in hers; another friend is a huge coffee drinker so I put two of those choc flavored spoons in hers), and I also made choc covered pretzels.

Work has been rough as always. A project got bumped up by three weeks so vacation has been effectively cancelled until mid-May (no Jazz Fest and Van Morrison for me), and we were told that we would have to work weekends from here on out.

Anyways, on a happier note, two friends are visiting me in May - the first weekend and the third weekend. In fact, my blues society friends are throwing a party at the Local Charm the third weekend so it will be a good time.

Also I have a new crush. His nickname is "Boston" because he in fact a Boston native. Original, I know. He travels a ton for work, so we'll see how it works.

The Maine job would be in Rockport.

Saturday, April 14, 2001

I have now experienced sitting in the Chicago Greyhound bus station in the wee hours of the morning. Not planning to do it again. It wasn't what I would call dangerous; I just don't like being stuck in one place like that. I certainly wasn't going to go wander around the city at 3 a.m. alone, so I had to settle for sitting in the bus station with a teenager trying really hard to make conversation with me. He opened the conversation with getting my attention while I crocheted to stay awake - "hey! Hey! Hey yo! Hey, that's cool! What is that?" "A scarf for my grandma." "You married?" "Excuse me?" "You married." "Why?" "You married? I mean, you married to someone? How old are you?" "Old enough to vote." "19?" "No." "22?" "No." "You don't look older than 19." "Thanks." "You Asian?" "Among other things." "Italian? What?" Fortunately, the Nigerian woman I'd been talking to earlier came back from her trip to customer service, and we continued our discussion of how long it takes to get anywhere on the bus, and isn't it a shame taking a plane is so expensive, and relative merits of the weather conditions. You Married Boy made sure he stayed nearby and accessible in case I decided that I really did want to discuss my marital status, age, ethnic background, and destination point with him. If I hadn't been so tired, I may have decided it would be a good time to throw in religion and politics and start asking if hed' been saved and what he thought of the riots in Cincinnati.

I continued to crochet in the bus station in Indianapolis, which opened a brief conversation with a young man from South Africa. He wanted to know where I was from, but because the women in his country did that too, only with two needles, and he had not seen any American women doing that. I have been surprised by the number of Africans living in the Midwest - Nigeria, Senegal, South Africa...and that's just in bus stations; I didn't spend time walking around Chicago and Indianapolis exploring the neighborhoods.

I may wind up going back to Madison to work in the hostel for the summer. I need to get more information first, but I know that I'd be a lot happier doing that than doing office work. The people I met and the wandering around I did assure me that it's a place I could be very happy in, especially in warm weather.

The landscape between Chicago and Indianapolis was a new experience for me. The air conditioning unit on the bus sounded like an old film projector, so I felt like I was watching a film of farmland out the window. It really is that flat - I could picture glaciers moving like slow heavy hands across the land, smoothing it flat. The fields were neatly combed, with a shimmer of new leaves, and I could see for miles. Trees pressed flat like lace against the sky, farmhouses and barns, the occasional precisely oval pond. Just a few minutes south of Indianapolis, the land resumed rolling and curving.

After being Urban Girl for the past few weeks, being in Somewhere Outside of Bloomington has been refreshing. Susan wanted to make sure that being in the woods didn't freak me out (she's had visitors get freaked out before), so I explained that I had spent many summers visiting my grandparents in West Newfield, Maine (I tell people it's somewhere near Lebanon). The kind of place where you get drinking water by driving half an hour to a mountain spring. Not completely backwoods; there's also an A&P with bait worms and candy and stuff; barns stuffed with antiques and other seasonal businesses. Here, it's clearly springtime, dandelions and birdsong and leaves unfurling. Brad is out back taking apart a shed, with Koa (a large golden lab) observing and finding sticks and seeking out stinky stuff to roll around in. We'll go hunting for edible mushrooms later.

I've known for several months that I needed to take this trip. Last night, it struck me as funny that part of what I'm doing is basically going on a spiritual quest - in the Midwest. Well, most people go to exotic places renowned as "power centers" like Sedona Arizona, India, Bali, Hawai' it makes sense. I started out in an "exotic" place, so the Midwest is a logical location. I am in an environment almost completely foreign to me, surrounded by people and plants and animals that are outside of my day-to-day experience. I am still telling the tulips and daffodils and miniature paper narcissi that they are all fake fake fake and I know it. Wisconsin and Indiana and springtime just aren't quite real to me.

London quickly felt like home to me, and I am looking forward to being there again for a few days. I can call back full sensory memories of train stations and streets I used to walk and the laundromat and cornershops and the different bus routes. I will spend most of my time there in galleries and museums (I'll finally get to see the Tate Modern!), and I'll also spend a day retracing what was, for a few months, daily routine.

It looks like I will drop North Carolina from my plans over the next few weeks. I have the feeling though, that I will go back to Madison at least for June, and so will visit Greensboro later.

Friday, April 13, 2001

DUDE!!!! Al Burian and Andrew Dickson (?) were in Greensboro last week. did i already mention that? i thought i did. Al is not only hhhot. but also a brilliant writer and also a brilliant reader of his writings. the film was good too... it was fun. i like the filmmaker guy (Andrew)... he wears his glasses on the back of his head. Michael... you gotta tell me what you think of the whole event. what kind of venue is it taking place at? ours was at a record store. i'm so excited that you're going to see this!!

I love all you guys' travel logs. Precious little travel in my future. Though I thought the Maine summer job was out of the question - but as of an email yesterday, it's back up in the air again. Did I mention that I'm working on a world geography textbook right now? I spend all day looking at pictures of places I want to go. Right now Greek harbors are on my lightbox. Greece has really nice light.
I want to spend the weekend catching up on seeing movies. Anyone have good rental suggestions?

I'm still in New York, having a good time. Yesterday we went to Ellis Island and ate vegan softserve and saw the Haunted at CBGBs. Today, we're going to PS1 and the MOMA. My feet hurt. More later.

Thursday, April 12, 2001

jacob had a theory:
jacob's daylight savings time theorem of drunkeness:
yet another one of professor jp meyer's fantabulous mathematical permutations:
the world is getting drunker by 1 hour every year. yes it's true. we blame low test scores and rising crime rates on lax school standards and poverty, but it's really because we are all gaining one hour of drinking every year.
fact: 80% of the alcohol serving establishments close at 2:00 am. daylight savings time occurs at precisely this time every 12 months, when we "lose" an hour by jumping from 2:00 am to 3:00 am; "spring ahead" if you will. However, in october when we "fall back," the clock is set not from 3:00 am back to 2:00, but from 2:00 back to 1:00. thus we gain one hour of drinking every year. i suspect the liquor lobby has had its fist in this machiavellian scheme.
now, by extrapolating this concept. we see that at some point in the startlingly near future, earth shall become completely saturated in liquor, making possible alcohol fueled mayhem ona global scale, paving the way for horrors such as decrepit dogs that won't die, chess playing bums with HIV, and helicopter pilots that periodically warn people to stop their daily activities (such as banging on a piece of wood) and go to bed! the apocalypse! if you poured water on this fight it would steam cause it is HOTTT!!!

umm, yeah. i don't have anything new to say except that i played with chinchillas.

Tuesday, April 10, 2001

EXACTLY. how eloquently put. for 3 years i've tried to explain this to people, but didn't know how. my graduate school experience has been "[me fighting] hard to get my degree at a crappy university, killing myself and not getting what I should have out of the experience." and this AFTER having been to a fine institution of higher education for my undergrad degree. it's all very frustrating, and has made me very bitter. but. i only have 22 more days to care about it.

In Madison, Wisconsin, using the computer at the public library. Finding cybercafes is not as easy as I had hoped it would be; the internet access available at the hostels I've been to is an evilly expensive and slow machine ($5 for 40 minutes and it takes forever to go anywhere). The company that installs those in the hostels should die a slow and miserable death.

Madison is nifty. Visiting the university campus got me angry, though, as exposure to world-class universities generally does. I fought hard to get my degree at a crappy university, killing myself and not getting what I should have out of the experience. On the other hand, there's always graduate school and independent study.

Monday, April 09, 2001

North Carolina is hot. We've been in the eighties for a few days now. In someways its nice. My flowers love it. But, my housemates don't want to turn on the air yet, so we're sweating. I can't imagine how I will sleep tonight. I've got my windows open and I dug my fan out of the basement, but that's never really enough.

Fortunately, I'm flying to NYC tomorrow where its fifteen degrees cooler. John, Evan and I will be there for four days. We plan to eat in vegan restaurants, visit museums and see the Haunted at CBGBs.

Last Saturday and Sunday, thad, dad, uncle scott and I went to our family's cabin in the Uwharrie National forest. The place was looking great and we had a fun time.

I know I should write more. But, it's too hot. I need a shower. I'll write about my trip on sunday.

Pukka means cool or awesome. At least that is the line that my friend Charlene who recently transferred to our London office tells me.

Shelly, I sent you an e-mail. will try to call you sometime this week. Maybe tonight or Wed.?

Funny work story. this girl Tyra went on vacation for a week, and just got back last Wed. out of nowhere she yells across my cube, "ANGIE JOE. I can't BELIEVE you DID THIS." I blow her off, but then she comes to my desk and says, "What is THIS????" It was a penis-shaped bottle of cherry flavored motion lotion. She was really disturbed after she learned that I was not the culprit. She proceeds to walk around the office showing people. Next thing I know all of the women in our office are putting it on other people's desks, turning bright red and running away afterwards. Finally the human resources manager is holding it like it's a dirty diaper. She and a vice president open the crap and pour something into their hands as if it were something out of a petting zoo or something. Aieeeye. Some people just need to learn to live. Apparently none of these women have bought such novelties for their friends' bachlorette party. It is what you are SUPPOSED to do, as a penis cake or edible underwear just isn't funny after 10 years of marriage and three kids.

I went home to New Orleans this past weekend for Passover.
Angie Joe & Shelly - I think I saw Darlene Garcia in the N.O. Airport - she was carrying a box labeled "live lobsters." I didn't get a chance to talk to her since she was so far away.
Spent most of the weekend eating, relaxing and eating. Heaven.

Friday, April 06, 2001

angie joe- what does "pukkah" mean? i'm confused. is that the sociologist's name? am i being totally dumb? maybe i should read/write when i'm so tired. pukkah, is a word in Hindi and Punjabi.

shelly- what angie joe said... i wanted to say it to you first, but um... i lose. still. that's exactly what i wanted to say.

louise- i am living vicariously through your travels. tell more, tell more!! have fun in chicago!! it's a great city.

michael- "rocknrollupma." good luck w/the Survivor app.

i think it's time to take a nap. i'm out.

Weezie - Chicago ROCKS. Here are some places to check out . . . . There is this GHETTO restaurant called "Valois." It's one of those "only where the locals go" type place, and it's this 1950's style cafeteria. Mostly blue-collared, working class people go there, but it is within close proximity to the U of Chicago. In fact, this sociologist from U of C did this study on people that went to this place - their lifestyle, their accent, etc. I think it was supposed to be a reflection on the diversity of the city. Pukkah. There is also this store called Jazz Mart which is THE place for jazz and blues. In fact, I think it has the largest jazz collection in the U.S. Don't forget about the stuffed pizza (yum). One more place thta is way cool. It's called "Andy's." Go there during lunch, and they always have live music. It was started by this journalist who wanted to give downtown workers an opportunity to hear jazz during thier lunch breaks. When I was there, the sax player had been playing at Andy's for the last 35 years. AMAZING. Can I just say that I LOVE the LITTLE man? And grab a copy of "The Onion" if you can - it is this funny, funny sarcastic free pub.

Also, I have a friend who lives up there who is VERY cool. She takes all kinds of classes - belly dancing, Jamacian folk, she tutors kids in Chinatown, she works in soup kitchens a few times a month, goes on whitewater rafting trips, listens to a ton of jazz/blues, etc. I think you'll like her. If you want her number, let me know.

Shel, I think you are being WAY too hard on yourself. It's not about who done it first. It's all about your interpretation of it. While that guy's work APPEARS to be similar to yours, it is not. I mean hell, just think about his intention and yours alone - completely and totally different.

Thursday, April 05, 2001

If Milwaukee were more compact and wasn't winter for 9 months out of the year, I could live here. We went vintage clothes shopping over the weekend, and I blew my budget for the entire week in one day. I bought more clothes than I brought with me, and have to mail most of it home. Just being able to find vintage stuff that is 1) in my size and 2) reasonably priced is reason enough for me get ridiculous. I justified the cafe au lait 50's dress of tiers and tiers of lace by reasoning that I could sell it on eBay if I never wore it. And the fuschia Audrey Hepburn 60's two-piece linen suit is worthy of job interviews. The 20's style tennis dress in pristine condition was only $15. The trendy mid-length denim skirt, vintage Calvin Klein, fits perfectly. And the stretchy boatneck horizontal stripe shirt in gray and black is not only exactly the sort of thing I wear to pieces, it was $8. All this, after I've been thinking about calling home and telling one of my sisters to donate everything I left in her house to charity. I tried on armloads of stuff, out of the sheer pleasure of being able to fit into it. Honolulu has way overpriced vintage made for tiny women, and SF has way overpriced and quicky picked over vintage. I'm told Kansas has awesome cheap vintage.

Frozen custard is the midwestern cousin to gelato, and in itself a reason to visit the Midwest. I had to buy a bottle of Lactaid so that I wouldn't explode from all the dairy. There is also awesome Middle Eastern and Indian food. I had the most wonderful day on Sunday - vintage shopping, vegetarian Middle Eastern food that made me want to cry it was so good, a soy mint mocha in an adorable coffee shop, a light sprinkling of snow, and a viewing of "Pollock" in The Oriental Theater, a baroque Art Deco mishmash of Romantic Orientalism (gold buddha statues with glowing eyes and all). Walking across the lawn at the house, I felt the crunching under my feet and wondered why there was sand all over the ground. I couldn't stop laughing when I realized it was snow. We had seen some falling on our way to the coffee shop, involving me standing on the sidewalk, laughing and watching the patterns it made falling under the light from the streetlamps. It sparkles!

Shelly had already proven that she is the consummate hostess during the Stingray Flapjack convention; she proved that once again when I stayed with her in Seattle. Did I mention that she makes the most wonderful french toast? AND Jacob is a great cook. The two of them alone make Seattle a desirable destination.

Heading to Chicago this weekend.

so last night i got a free pass to a preview of Josie and the Pussycats. a movie i had no intentions of seeing, but when you're monitarily challenged you don't turn down free stuff. it was weird, the whole thing was a huge commercial thinly disguised in an anti-corporate message. i got a long list of companies not to buy from however and it did make me wish i had followed through on the girl band thing at some point in time in my life.
in the tradition of the evening i went to barnes and noble to read-but-not-buy magazines. the one i wanted to see specifically was this month's Bust. i knew it had an interview of an artist i met the other night at an art show group started up by a few local friends. she was someone i wanted to interview for-something-or-another because she seemed very interesting. i was dismayed not to be able to find the interview with her but i did see an interview with another local group of artists that i was also planning to interview for the same project. to make matters worse i saw a mini article/ad for breast pillows very similar to some small sculptures i've been working on for a while. but while the focus of my pillows were to deal with body images and images of female beauty in art and sort of poke fun at the whole thing by having these ridiculous stuffed venus of willendorf objects, the ones in the magazine while they look similar to the ones i was making, were produced by a guy whose object was to find a way to sleep with his head between a pair of boobs every night.
great he wants to rest his head on a cloud of tittie meat. (i think that is a line from a movie, anyone?)
so anyway, the evening kind of left me feeling like crap. three ideas, ruined by one magazine, and one that i usually like for that matter. crap crap crap. and though i have a friend who has a bit of trouble with reality from time to time, who thinks that someone STOLE his idea when something like this happens. i know there are just limited themes and limited materials and most people don't have anything new to say anyway. but somebody did it faster and better than i did, yet again, and they got it DONE. i feel like crap.

You know, I often get these "wild hairs up my butt," and just do/want to do completely random things. Last Dec. it was my trip to Kansas City. This week, I found out that there will be a Woody Guthrie tribute at the EMT (is that right Shelly?) in Seattle, and Wilco, Jimmy LaFave, Nanci Griffith and Butch Hancock will be performing. So I am really contemplating the trip. Plane tickets aren't even that bad. And I figured out that if I leave on the Tues. (the concert is Wed.) and come back on Fri. evening, I will be home just in time for Robert Earl Keen's Texas Uprising concert. But that would mean cancelling my girls' weekend with my best friend and her mom. Decisions, decisions.

I dunno. I figure with the way my sorry ass has been working, that I deserve these things. Besides, I have no kids, no plants, etc., and I am young and foolhardy so I should do young and foolhard things, right???? I guess I feel dumb complaining about this crap because there are freakin' starving people on the streets and people walking around without access to healthcare.

Shell, we'll talk next week.

Wednesday, April 04, 2001

funny, funny.

i thought i was gonna be scare 'round these here parts fer awhile. (i just felt like tawkin like that.)

i told my friend andrew that i want to learn to thrash this summer. he kinda laughed at me. but. i do. i've always been a little afraid of the skateboard. i feel like if i do take up the art of thrashing i might break a bone. i've never done that before either. i will accomplish two things then... thrashing and breaking my bones.

i will, after the summer begins, begin to learn how to play my bass guitar that i acquired for a mere $75. i'm excited about that.

in fact. i'm excited about a lot of things. like having the time to read for pleasure, or being able to go bowling with John Rash, or being able to go to the movies with mr. zachary mull. suupahstarr. oh... having long weekends to go on little road trips. the first of which will be to blacksburg, VA and then the next one to DC and then the next one to Philly. i guess i'll probably have to go to va beach a lot too, to see the parental unit. maybe they'll feed me. food should not be a luxury item.

so i now have an extra 4 days to finish my film. instead of being done on the 13th, i get to be done on the 17th. which is good and bad. i was kinda hoping to ditch town that weekend if i got done on the 13th. but, now, i have the weekend to tinker with the film some more. so.. do i have my screening on the 20th or the 27th? i think the 20th is the best plan. that way it's ALL done. and that'll be that. and then after i recoup my expenses by taking money from unsuspecting high schoolers (legitimately, of course), i can start on my next two projects. well. as long as i get the camera i want for graduation.

JT, is your shiny new machine a dual processor? do you know pro-tools? just askin. what moniter did you get?

i feel like i'm rambling. time to go.

Monday, April 02, 2001

givin' the dog a bone?

big balls?

i got to see acdc for free in the vip box last night it was much better than i expected. my favorite song was the one, i can't remember the name, where angus plays this riff that kinda sounds like another song and than the rest of the band comes in like a house on fire. i think it was about sex, maybe. those guys are pretty sneaky with their innuindo.

Sunday, April 01, 2001

i've never been to a bachelorette party... and now i hope i never go to one. i think you're a really brave girl, steph.

so i FINALLY finished shooting. well. sorta. anyway... i think i also solved most of my technical problems yesterday... SO if all goes well, i should have a completed film by the 13th... a public screening on the 20th, and an MFA on May 13th. i'm not walkin though. no way.

i'm totally procrastinating now. oh... that reminds me. why is it that when i'm broke i'm always hungry and when i have money i hardly ever think about food? does everybody do that?