Sunday, March 16, 2014

Peaches Does Herself and Taps My Boot

I don't want to give you the wrong impression. I'm not as jaded as I was in that last post, the "Valentine's Day at the DMV" one. It's only been a month, but my perspective on love, dating, marriage, soul mates and all that stuff is way, WAY better. Why, just in the last few weeks I've gone from listening to Elliott Smith's "Everything Means Nothing to Me" to Peaches "Fuck the Pain Away."

No really, this is an improvement! You have to be alive to fuck the pain away, people, you have to have ambition. Did I tell you that I met Peaches, by the way? Like, yeah, actually met her.

Ok, I didn't actually meet her. But I touched her shoe with my foot WHILST her shoe was on her foot! It's a great story, so a couple of months ago I was at the Prytania Theater want to know who Peaches is? You don't know this? Oooooooh! Well, no wonder you weren't as impressed as I thought you should be. Ok so Peaches is a musician who looks like this:

Iiiiiiiimpressed? So am I. But on the night that I touched her shoe, she looked more like this:

I'd gone to see the mock rock opera "Peaches Does Herself" and knowing what little I did about her, I'd decided to go by myself. See, Peaches is sexual in an undefinable way. Which is one of the things I like about her. She's a Tomboy sometimes, and then not other times. Just when she feels like it. "Tomboy" is putting it mildly. Sometimes she wears girly lingerie and sometimes she wears a dildo and a beard. She's boldly freakish. Whatever her sexuality is, and I'm not really sure, it's hers and she doesn't care if anyone understands, accepts it, or thinks she's pretty. There's a line in her song "I U She" that says "I don't have to make the choice, I like girls and I like boys." Her movie has hermaphroditic joy, like it's something beautiful instead of perverse, which is totally different from the message I've gotten about sexuality which is if you stray from being a feminine woman or a masculine man, there's something wrong deeply with you.

From my perspective as a person who's trying to let go of a lot of shame and repression, this is a liberating perspective. And also in the movie a lady lights matches and tucks them into her inverted nipples. That is liberating for a whole heap of reasons, not least of which being that I was always told not to put fire near my breasts. The Half Naked Cow Girl set me free (THAT'S HER NAME).

Anyway, as open-minded as my friends are I didn't know if they'd be comfortable so I went alone, and that's how I ended up in an empty row near the back of the theater. No! Not so that I could do that! It really was a coincidence. Which, now that I think about it would have been a great chance for me to take advantage of myself, but I'm just not the kind of girl who would use a vulnerable person like me in a movie theater. However, it proved to be a great spot for accidentally touching a musician's shoe. BECAUSE near the end of movie this woman and this guy filed into my row, and the woman sat down next to me. I thought it was a little weird that they would pay to see a movie where they'd only watch the last ten minutes of it, but I decided to not judge them or turn my head to look at them. Except for when I crossed my legs, and accidentally tapped the woman's shoe with my boot.

"Sorry," I whispered, glancing at her quick enough to notice that the sides of her head were shaved but in the dark I didn't recognize details of her face.

I don't think she heard me or even noticed that I'd tapped her shoe. Since I'm quiet and hyper sensitive to touch it's possible that only I noticed the tiniest tap of a pin drop point on her foot, and only I heard my squeak of an apology. So I let it go and focused on the last five minutes of the movie, where Peaches rides a tricycle contraption through the streets of Berlin repeating the line "Fuck the pain away."

Just before the lights came on, the man in my row got up and the woman next to me followed him to the front of the theater. And then he introduced her as Peaches.

I'll never wash that boot again.

She was there for a Q&A thing at the end of the movie. I didn't ask any questions, though that would have been a great opportunity to actually talk to her so that I could tell you guys something more exciting than "I touched her shoe and she didn't notice." Though I'd liked the movie, I couldn't think of anything to ask that had anything to do with it.

"Do you ever feel shy or embarrassed?" That would have been my question. But the questions from the audience were like, "Was the mutilated dildo custom made?" "How did that woman stick matches in her tits?" And then something about feminism. "What do you think the difference is between your style and, say, Lady Gaga's?" I don't remember how the question was worded. It was something about female sexuality in main stream pop culture vs. Peaches. You would think that an interesting question like that, especially since I have daughters, would stick with me rather than "How did that woman stick matches in her tits?" but here we are. I do remember, however, the woman starting the question and Peaches cutting in with, "You're going to ask me something about feminism, aren't you?" She didn't say it in an irritated way. It sounded like she could just tell. I guess she gets that a lot.

I've been listening to a lot of girl music that I've lumped into a category called "I don't give a fuck." It's not all one genre, just has that same theme. Joan Jett, The Donnas, Peaches, and The Pack A.D. are a few. I needed raw, dynamic women who are funny and pretty sometimes but not all the time. Just like the rest of us.

So here are the questions I would have asked Peaches if I had no problem speaking in front of a theater full of people:

1) Are you really confident about your sexuality and your body or is that a stage thing, and if you really are then how do you do that?

2) Did you always not care what people think or is that something that you had to work on?

3) What do you think healthy sexuality is?

4) Did you sit next to me because you thought I was cute in the dark?

5) Hee hee.

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Valentine's Day at the DMV

I wrote this in the back cover of Singing School by Robert Pinsky while I was waiting at the DMV.

I took the day off of work to come here. I'm sitting in a plastic chair in a row of many other rows with other people who are dressed against the cold. There are red streamers hanging from the ceiling because it's Valentine's Day and I think the government workers love us. I brought this book with me. It's kind of an anthology called Singing School, and I'm finding that only some poems are working with the rhythm of this place.

William Blake's "A Question Answered" - no. Nothing by Emily Dickinson either, or any other poem that sounds like something you might hum to a baby.

But "Howl" is working. It fits somehow with the electronic calling of alphanumeric names and the monotone questions.

"Now serving E414 at counter number 5."

Moloch! Nightmare of Moloch!

"Now serving A016 at counter number 18."

Moloch whose breast is a cannibal dynamo!

"Sir, do you wear glasses?"

Moloch whose eyes are a thousand blind windows!

I look up at the electronic board above my head. It's blinking bright red letters and numbers. A014 is next but that doesn't tell me how soon it will be for me because they're not calling in any kind of order. A015 doesn't follow A014. It's H218 next.

I wonder, because it's Valentine's Day and the streamers are suggesting that I think about these things, if I'll ever have love in my life again. Sometimes I wonder if I'm even capable of feeling it anymore. This isn't something I'm sad about. What's more sad is how detached I feel from the question.

Moloch in whom I sit lonely! Moloch in whom I dream Angels! Crazy in Moloch! Cocksucker in Moloch! Lacklove and manless in Moloch!

Nothing makes me feel less human than sitting in a room full of other humans who are waiting to be processed. Sometimes names are called, I guess the ones who are at the end of the process and their licenses are done.

But this is still better than love. This is still better than flowers and behind them all of the uncertainty, and my own bullshit. I am B105, waiting. Which window? Tell me when and which window? I'll wait in my row until the harsh red light flashes B105. It's preferable to chalky, tasteless hearts with alphanumeric codes like "Text u l8r." Staying single sometimes feels like self-love and a public service at the same time - and that perspective seems self-pitying and overly dramatic to me. I'm not really sure how to feel at all.

Dreams! Adorations! illuminations! religions! the whole boatload of sensitive bullshit!

Ok, so maybe I'm not so detached. I'm just not sure that I can feel anything like that again. Maybe I fit with the rhythm of this place today. I'm ok with the little headaches of cracked plastic chairs and Window 11 now serving C135.

real holy laughter in the river! They saw it all! the wild eyes! the holy yells! They bade farewell. They jumped off the roof!

I was called to Window 18. And the computer is down. Cocksucker in Moloch. I dream Angels.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

27 Year Pause

I've written so many things in the last two months but my Vigilantes don't know it. So I'm writing this at work just to say hi, and of course, the phone is ringing. This ringing phone, my loves, is the reason for my great absence from this blog. I put the caller on hold just so I can finish this paragraph. Just a second...

The are times I wonder if I'll only be able to write consistently when I retire at 65. Assuming I can retire. Then I think, "But then I won't be sexy." As if it makes a difference that I'm a sexy writer, but apparently I equate writers with leather-clad rock stars and I just can't imagine myself with high heel boots and spike-studded leather when I'm 65. Though I guess it's good to have long term goals.

This is what I've accepted about myself recently - I hate self care. Regular bathing, cooking, cleaning, budgeting, lawn maintenance, and not quitting my job on the spot are things that just don't jive with my nature. Most of life is the daily maintenance of self and space, and I've just got to face the fact that I fucking hate it. I do those things, but I despise those things, and I can't make myself stop doing them but I'm going to stop expecting to suddenly enjoy or appreciate them. I would like to think that I could evolve into a functional human female who thrives off of pruning, preening, filling in calenders, and praying thanks to God for my 8-5 job every day, but that shit just ain't gonna happen. If left to my own devices I would shower twice a week, never clean, quit my job, take a bat to my cubicle, and spend the rest of my waking days writing, falling asleep, and then going out at night to hear music. I wouldn't even take a lover, and really, with the two showers a week that problem would solve itself.

But since I've committed to the day routine care of my self, space, and those around me, the blog has suffered. I don't have time to do all of those things, finish my book, and blog. The miracle is, even though I'm doing the practical thing for my kids, I don't resent my kids. This is just the time in my life when I have to remain a functional adult for them so that they have the things they need, and that's ok. That's actually the thought that keeps me from taking a bat to my cubicle.

When I turn 65, I promise you guys, more work will pour out of me than you can handle. In 27 years, when I am sitting on my couch, curled up with my laptop, in my spike-studded leather, that's when the work will happen without pause. Right now I have to work around the pauses.

Which is why I'm excited to tell you THAT I FINISHED THE BOOK!!! The Water Door Magician is done! I'm having a locksmith friend read it and make sure I got all of the technical details right, but it'll be ready to send out after that. Everybody get out your leather high heels and celebrate!