Holy cow. I'm going to have to make something like this.
Yves Saint Laurent, once again, lifts my mood, utterly.
Image and jacket from Resurrection Vintage.
Taking a break from grading and planning and other instructorly things. Because there is no time like now and I've sucked at posting.
Notes n' Lessons:
I'm learning to not wait until I have enough time to write "real" emails or make long calls to drop friends a line or get back with them sooner than, like, a year later. (You think I exaggerate.)
One doesn't "find time". At least, this one doesn't. This one loses it and doesn't find it again, like that one pink Nike shoe one lost on the first day of kindergarten.
Silk for casual at-home wear is very, very bad. Silk for work-wear is very, very good. Silk is work-casual while not looking casual. However, silk + Chipotle burrito eating in car = inadvisable.
(That's how I do math.)
My 6th grade teacher and I had a love-hate relationship because I loved books and hated her for making me learn prepositions, and she hated me for refusing to and thus doing poorly on my grade and if she loved me for anything, I still don't know what it is and she's probably dead, but Mrs. Kendall, you had some serious hair, and thank you for giving me something to think I still hated so I could teach Developmental English and completely lose my mind with nerdery and find it to be one of the most rewarding and enjoyable things I've ever taught. Insert preposition joke here, which I would if I had time, but.
Rue McClanahan's autobiography reads exactly like Blanche and for this, I'm grateful. I've also got Estelle Getty's and one of Betty White's but unless I didn't dig hard enough, my dearest Bea Arthur didn't write one. Or have one ghost-written.
My writing this month has all involved cross-dressing and related things. Why? I dunno. Why not? Writing RULES.
I've done some thrifting and vintaging and antiquing and hopefully, I'll get it posted here some day, but for now, here is this hot-fuschia ostrich fascinator-net hat item that I found for $18 and which I will totally wear, and like, promptly.
I'm unclear why Sunday, no matter how restful the rest of the weekend has been, is always mentally EXHAUSTING.
So to make sense of this metaphysical conundrum, I went to Value World. Since, you know, I can't get Salvation on Sundays as it is closed.
I ended up with this silk Oscar de la Renta beauty:
$4.50 is a lot for a scarf but it was worth every pretty Versace-esque baroque penny.
What's with the heavens raining down Diane Fres and Diane Fres knock-offs? The one on the left (knock-off) I actually got at Unique ($3) yesterday. The one on the right was $6.
The one I got the other day is still the best find. Of the three. But it's really not about comparisons but all about joy, because I will wear them all to teach. Summer classes are hard to dress for. Rooms can get cold with a/c so things have to be versatile. It's also hard to look professional and stay cool when everything else is SWELTERING. Semi-diaphanous flamenco-y dresses that actually cover a lot of skin help. And, dresses are comfortable. Black pants are my enemy right now.
It's summer, but I've spent far too much time inside. I wish I had a hammock. That would save the world. But I have come to accept the following: I have zero tolerance for MOIST HEAT. No, not from a warm compress. Unless you consider the atmosphere to be one and the same. ...I might as well. Fine: I have zero tolerance for the GREAT WARM COMPRESS OF THE SKY.
...Confounded midwest. But I love it so, for all that. (Though it must also be noted that I love the west, and the south. And the east. And Xanadu.)
I actually don't spend an extreme amount of time inside, I just feel like I've done little by way of, say, exercising outside. As in taking walks. As in avoiding roots and broken sidewalks as I stare at architecture. I've been reading. A lot. And writing. Some. And planning class(es). A lot. It's only going to get crazier.
More later, but here are some notes:
-Raiders of the Lost Ark never gets old.
-Reading Lean In and my general women's history books has been very positive, except when other people find it threatening, and then I have to go get a snack-size McFlurry and cry in my car.
-Many someones have interest in writing the same material that I'm working on for a history play, and I both enjoy the healthy competition and the zeitgeist-ish quality of it all.
-I'm on my last season of The Golden Girls. Sigh.
-I finally subscribed to Entertainment Weekly, mostly because I feel so out of the loop. And, well, it's entertaining.
-My street has its own drunk and he squats in the abandoned tiny house a few houses down and he amuses me in a sad way and I get mad when people take hard lines with those who struggle (or lose the battle) with addiction.
-I miss my friends. I need to road-trip and Skype and all that good stuff. This includes everyone who is my friend, but I'm specifically thinking Jen and Val. Visitors always welcome, of course!
-This has been a dogtastic week with both Archie the bulldog and Monet the pitbull mix. Please, both of you - slobber and sit on me anytime. I miss Biff, too.
-David Sedaris is my hero. One of 'em, at least.
-I got over my teaching fatigue (awhile ago, in fact) from teaching my 9th and 10th new class, and I have become a bit of a grammar hound, but just for fun. And I needed no prodding to get pumped about humanities. Too bad a few of my students can't be prodded. TOO BAD FOR THEM. I want to say something uncharitable about moist heat, here, but I won't.
It was a good idea to pop into Value World.
I got this Diane Fres dress for $6.
LOVE ME SOME DIANE FRES.
In case you don't believe me, here's this oldie:
I would happily rock Diane Fres at all times. Especially if I could get every dress for $6. (2nd pic dress was something like $35 at a vintage store, still an enormous steal.)
Doing what I'm trained to do and what I want to do and what I've worked hard at is VERY GRATIFYING. I don't take it for granted. Believe me, I don't.
Extremely happy to be a 2014/15 Nord Playwriting Fellow at Cleveland Public Theatre with my incredible cohort Andrew Kramer.
This last year was an extremely good year. This next year is going to be GREAT.
P.S. I don't really look like this.
I've tried to write this post THREE TIMES but my trusty ol' Macbook has not been the trustiest of writing steeds. (In its defense, it only started freezing up after I dropped it for the first time ever - a few months ago. Sigh.) So if you don't find this post excruciatingly clever and interesting, just assume that the other ones were Pulitzer-worthy screeds of sublime majesty.
The essential information: I moved. I bruised. I unpacked. I'm 95% finished. I still am bruised.
I'm currently sitting in my desk in my "garret office"/dressing room/bedroom and I am perfectly o.k. with the fact that my office is the one space that is not completely finished. Why? Because I want to write and I don't want to feed into the idea that things need to be "just so" to make it happen. Pretty much all I need to write is a) trusty writing steed even if it's not being trusty b) earplugs c) moderate clime. (In what I basically assume is my middle age, I fiercely accept the fact that I hate being hot. I can't sunbathe to save my life. Which is fine, because that might play a part in SAVING MY LIFE.)
But I really like the new space. It's less delineated than previous residences but the openness suits me. It's urban without being tiny. And it has carpet as well as wood flooring, which also suits me. Because, well, there is the d) part of my writing needs, and it's all about being able to move around. I get ants in my pants.
The movers thought I had kids because of my office stuff. Heh heh.
The meanest face ever:
Not feeling mean, though. Just wanted to post that pic because I want everyone to be aware that I have a head.
Unlike in the following picture. It's the most risque picture ever:
What's got into me, you say?
I just wore this dress three days in a row because a) I just got it for $1 and b) it was hot out and it's the shortest thing I've ever been able to wear and not look nasty in and c) it's got pixelated roses, man. C'mon. My kind of floral. ...wasn't trying to look risque, I was just trying to take a pic without a mirror and also demonstrate that I'm wearing sandals. Mirror is not available.
I'm going to go on a writing retreat. I don't know where to go. I'm open to suggestions.
Ruts. Are. The. Worst.
Are my ruts what other people call writer's block? Phooey on that.
The only thing that keeps me from writing is myself. Barring, you know, sickness, circumstance, "acts of God" as my lease just put it (ha), extreme fatigue... this is the gift of being in my mid-30's: I know my ways, and I know my way around them.
Too bad it's still HARD to just START, which is the THING that gets me in the rut in the first place: I just don't want to start.
But with all that said, there can be some other issues that make things more difficult. Like, well, a nasty mental cocktail of thinking that things have to be fulfilling all the time. And that I should be in full command of my "vision", or whatever that's supposed to mean. And the worst: thinking far ahead into the nothingness that technically IS the future but having a lame existential attitude towards it, actually kind of thinking that it is sort of bleak and full of the nothingness that is like the Nothing in Neverending Story (yes I just ran through the song in my head, but it's untypable - try it; mine is "aa-aa-a, aa-aa-a, aa-aa-a").
Bad brain. Bad, bad brain. Brain needs to go in time-out.
...by the way, my little sister told me that she and her girls were watching that and my younger niece (6) completely freaked out when Atreyu's horse died. And I spent the rest of the night after she told me that being disturbed because I remembered Atreyu's horse dying (what is his horse's name?!?! Refuse to look it up out of mere disgust that I can't actually remember it) and feeling really bad for my niece. Geez. Which is worse? Atreyu's horse dying or knowing that every stinking character is utterly doomed in Land Before Time, no matter how the narrative ends?
(Artax. I caved in.)
Where was I?
Oh. Writer Mental Breakdown AKA "Writer's Block" AKA "rut".
No, really. The bottom line is that it's hard to start and nature and/or nurture shoves me into a true rutted mental pathway that basically makes me unconsciously lie to myself and think that something's wrong (apart from the usual things being wrong, such as not having everything I want) when I really just need to chain myself to the desk.
I'm going back to my Freedom App strategy - not that I got away from it, but I was just using it for screenwriting. Apparently need to use it for everything. Including class planning.
What did actually help was to write down all the looming projects (self-imposed and otherwise) and what steps I needed to break them down into. I did actually sit down in front of my novel materials again, fully intending to start - but it's an ENORMOUS project with ENORMOUS materials that I need strewn about me, and I need to start it off with some serious focus and this will happen - just not right now.
Because I have to move. I WANT to move. I get to move! I'm moving! To the west side! I have a small house and while room placement isn't set in stone, the hubs is generally very accommodating as to where I want my office/"museum" (his term). So I might get THE WHOLE LOFT. Which I need. It has carpet. This means I can strew to my heart's content. Did you know strew is not accurate when used that way? Did you know that I don't care? There is apparently no present form of strew except strewn and I can't strewn to my heart's content. Geez.
But moving is a bit disruptive, yes? Not exactly a good time to re-embark on the most massive project of my life, and I'm not exaggerating.
But I'm pumped. I signed the lease today. I was going to go see a matinee of Only Lovers Left Alive but maybe I can do that tomorrow. I just submitted my horror movie to the Final Draft contest (again) and I still have the screenwriting bug.
So instead of a) not doing anything or b) trying to start my novel or c) being miserable because I feel like I need to have vision but don't really feel vision-y right now (it comes and goes) I'm going to work on MY NEXT HORROR MOVIE. Woo-hoo!
And I'm glad that the new Dirt Chic format is likable. :) I like it. Doesn't quite represent what I'm all about, but that's kind of hard to do in one picture. I guess that's what headshots are for. Though even then - doesn't quite cut it.
Why am I even still talking?
Excuse me while I go try not to think about Artax and instead, think about wraiths and such.