9 more to go: On positivity.

I’ve noticed a trend lately in social media of talking a lot about positivity, positive energy, thinking positively and other similar platitudes around how our attitudes impact our lives and the world around us. I get very polarized around this sort of thing. On one hand, I think trying to be positive is a good thing for an individual and their overall mental/emotional well being. But I don’t necessarily buy wholesale the idea that such a thing has a huge impact outside of the individual. And I also am not a fan of the demonizing of any kind of “negative” thoughts or words and how it brings bad things to people. Because sometimes things are shitty and I think denying that is equivalent to trying to keep a cork in a bottle of champagne that’s been violently shaken. Eventually, shit is gonna explode.

I also feel like it’s a larger extension of people not wanting to hear other folks’s bad stuff because it makes them think of their bad stuff. And a lot of things are shitty right now! People are broke or jobless or struggling intensely even while employed. Health care is a mess, people have to throw fundraisers and start Chip-Ins to pay hospital bills and that’s just the tip of the iceberg. Now I do believe that dwelling in negativity does no good either. But I am not so naive as to think that keeping my thoughts eternally positive is all it takes to turn things around. I have known wonderful, positive, good people who have still died from cancer or lost their job or were economically blindsided. And it’s okay to feel shitty about that! This culture of Oprah and The Secret and posting a fucking picture of a waterfall with quotes from some long dead eastern philosopher often feels so divorced from reality and designed to blame and shame people if they’re ever feeling shitty about their shitty life situation. When I would talk to my Dad on the phone and he would tell me he was scared of dying from cancer I didn’t tell him to just buck up and think positively and here’s a quote from so and so. I did my best to honor his fears and hold them and listen and do what I could with my words and my love to maybe soften those razor sharp edges just a bit.

Ultimately, people can think and do what they want to think and do. I’m just real burned out on this unbalanced, jejune clinging to the idea that a positive mindset cures all. And if that just makes me negative then so be it. But I think it makes me alive and realistic.


10 more to go: Why Wonder Woman?

37 years ago tonight, the pilot episode of “The New Adventures of Wonder Woman”, with the head-scratching title of “The New Original Wonder Woman”, aired for the first time on national television. At the tender age of 2 and 3/4s, I can’t say for sure if I watched it. But I know I was there for most of the original, three year run of the series. And for many more years of reruns that followed on up until tonight, when I re-watched the pilot for the zillionth time courtesy of my treasured Wonder Woman DVD collection. If you’ve met me, you know I currently have four images representing the Amazing Amazon tattooed on my arm:

And the most common question I hear upon seeing my tattoos is “Why Wonder Woman?” I often want to answer “Well, why not?” Partially because I don’t get that everyone else doesn’t totally adore her and because it’s sometimes hard to put into words. It feels silly to wax rhapsodic about a fictional character, especially a superhero. Especially as a nearly-40-year-old adult. But I can’t help it. I absolutely love Wonder Woman! But I guess I’ll try to give a little bit of an explanation. I think, in some ways, it’s as simple as how deeply things can make an impression on you as a child.

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Drumming heroes, in action. 

Row 1: Janet Weiss, David Narcizzo

Row 2: Melissa York, Gina Schock

Row 3: Clem Burke, Patty Schemel, Rachel Carns

Row 4: Scott Plouf, Tobi Vail, Angie Heaton


12 more to go: Give the drummer some.

Above is one of my favorite photos of my playing the drums. It was taken by the ever talented Geof Teague at the “farewell for now” show my longest running band, Ex-Boyfriends, played before going on hiatus in 2010. I like the photo because I look both super pro and super dorky what with my usual upper lip biting thing I often do when playing. The other day I realized I’ve been playing drums for almost twenty years, which is kind of crazy! And I love it as much as ever. 

I started playing drums in college, somewhere around my sophomore year I believe. There was a tiny, dank practice room in the basement of one of the dorms and a friend had a ramshackle kit set up that I would go tap away at, trying to unlock the mysteries of the beat. My dear friend, Anna - whom I had met on Admitted Students Day at Sarah Lawrence College - opened up a world of music to me that would inevitably set me on my path to becoming a musician. I’d been into lots of “alternative” or “college music” like Throwing Muses, Pixies, The Breeders, Siouxsie & The Banshees, Depeche Mode, etc. in high school. Anna opened the gateway to indie and punk bands, especially stuff labeled “Riot Grrrl” and “Queercore” and suddenly playing music seemed so accessible. And not just accessible, but vital and necessary. Bands like Bikini Kill, Heavens To Betsy, Huggy Bear, Bratmobile, Team Dresch and God Is My Co-Pilot were making music I’d never even dreamed could exist. I remember sitting in a music listening room on campus with a turntable and headphones. In my hands was the first Bikini Kill EP and the EP of “Feed The Tree” by Belly, a perfect juxtaposition that represents a lot of my musical tastes to this day. As I sat there with my headphones on and listened to Kathleen Hanna’s voice howling, cooing, hissing and shouting in my ears, I was mesmerized. I’d never heard anyone sing about things the way she did. I felt energized and excited and like all these things were possible that hadn’t been before.

I was also lucky enough to be on a campus with students dedicated to putting on some really awesome indie/punk shows. One such bill was made up by indie heartthrobs Versus and Tsunami and an Illinois area band, Corndolly. Their drummer, Angie Heaton, was AMAZING! My friend Anna and I approached her worshipfully to have her sign our 7”s we purchased after the show. We asked her for drumming advice and she recommended listening to our Go-Go’s records, because Gina Schock was a rock solid drummer to learn from. When I made my initial attempts at drumming alone in that little room, I’d sit with a mix tape of songs that had simple beats - the Heavens To Betsy demo tape figured prominently in my early tutelage - and tried to play along, working my way toward the day when Ms. Schock’s beats would fall within my purview.

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13 more to go.

I’m always envious of memoirists. It seems like such a baffling concept to be able to look back at your life and retell it in such detail. And while I realize that a lot of people who do so have kept extensive, detailed journals, I always assume they’re lying just a little bit. I mean, sure, I can remember snapshots of various moments of my life, but enough to fill a book with a clean, linear (or even artsy, non-linear) narrative? Highly dubious. But I also realize my memory is maybe a bit tricky. But isn’t everyone’s?

I’ve always felt like certain people are good at remembering certain things and others aren’t. My friend Alyscia can remember historical information like her brain is a living encyclopedia. My housemate Philip can tell detailed stories of the many bands that traversed through the punk club he managed in Atlanta in the 70s and 80s. I have excellent visual recognition and can remember what someone was wearing the first time I met them or what their hair looked like. But I am horrible with names - it takes 3-4 visits from a client before I can see a name on my schedule and put a face to it - and even worse with birthdays. Even with Facebook I *still* manage to forget to wish some friends a happy birthday. And I’ve also had family members - my Mom, my step-sister -  recount events that I was a part of and have absolutely zero recollection of them. And these aren’t events that happened when I was an infant. But rather when I was6, 9, 13, etc.

I’ve always assumed this was due to the fact that I was A Sickly Child. I spent a lot of time in my head, my imagination, my own little world because my body was not the most fun place to be. I can recall sitting on the grass on the steps in front of my house inventing intricate superhero and super villain teams out of various action figures and engaging them in epic battles, grand dramas and often putting several of them in a bowl of water in the freezer until their teammates could rescue them with a “heat ray”. (Hot water from the kitchen sink!) I can pick up an issue of a comic book that I haven’t laid eyes on in over a decade and predict almost every panel before I see it. I can picture an actor or musician in my mind’s eye, blank on the name and wish aloud for a device that could just scan my mind’s eye and give me the Google results. 

I think that’s why I’ve been drawn to various types of blogging for years. It’s a way for me to look back at a document of something from my past and recall what I was doing at a given moment; what I was concerned with, experiencing, thinking, wearing. I find myself wondering if I should start buying crossword puzzle books and other things to help stimulate and strengthen my memory as each year goes by. But then I realize I have the lyrics to hundreds, even thousands of songs memorized. That I could sit down and recreate drum parts from songs I haven’t played in over a dozen years. And I’ll be the first person to notice some minute change you’ve made in your personal appearance because my brain has your locked in its personal image bank. So when someone finally invents the aforementioned device I’ll just press it against my skull and shake out a really non-linear book for you to read.


14 posts from now and I’ll be at 5000 posts.

I’m thinking of stopping at a nice, round number like 5000. This is a lot of time wasting and protracted distraction. I’ll still do my hair blog and follow people there. But this has begun to feel like something I don’t need to maintain.


Lovely view. (at Elia’s Fab Mini)

Lovely view. (at Elia’s Fab Mini)


Snake loves Madigan. (at Honeycomb Salon)

Snake loves Madigan. (at Honeycomb Salon)


fotzepolitic:

vintagegal: Yvonne Craig as Batgirl, 1960’s

fotzepolitic:

vintagegal: Yvonne Craig as Batgirl, 1960’s


sturtle:

This pic could’ve easily been taken about seven years ago here in New Orleans, but in fact, it was taken yesterday in Long Beach, NY, in the wake of Hurricane Sandy.
If you’re able to contribute to relief efforts in the Northeast, there are several ways to do so. Remember, though: at this stage in the game, most organizations prefer cash gifts. While donations of canned goods and clothing are great, they’re not so useful during near-term rescue and recovery work. Consider giving to:
The American Red Cross, which is operating nearly 200 emergency shelters along the East Coast and has a growing army of relief workers in the area. You can donate online, or you can text the word REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 gift. Or you could do it the old-fashioned way and call 800-RED-CROSS.
The ASPCA, which is helping pets, livestock, wildlife, and other animals impacted by the storm. Donate online at ASPCA.org.

sturtle:

This pic could’ve easily been taken about seven years ago here in New Orleans, but in fact, it was taken yesterday in Long Beach, NY, in the wake of Hurricane Sandy.

If you’re able to contribute to relief efforts in the Northeast, there are several ways to do so. Remember, though: at this stage in the game, most organizations prefer cash gifts. While donations of canned goods and clothing are great, they’re not so useful during near-term rescue and recovery work. Consider giving to:

  • The American Red Cross, which is operating nearly 200 emergency shelters along the East Coast and has a growing army of relief workers in the area. You can donate online, or you can text the word REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 gift. Or you could do it the old-fashioned way and call 800-RED-CROSS.
  • The ASPCA, which is helping pets, livestock, wildlife, and other animals impacted by the storm. Donate online at ASPCA.org.

Michael’s badass Snake Plisskin costume! (at Honeycomb Salon)

Michael’s badass Snake Plisskin costume! (at Honeycomb Salon)


Full view of my awesomely undead PE Teacher costume. Do the obstacle course or I’ll eat your soul!!

Full view of my awesomely undead PE Teacher costume. Do the obstacle course or I’ll eat your soul!!


Undead PE Teacher comin’ to get you!! (at Honeycomb Salon)

Undead PE Teacher comin’ to get you!! (at Honeycomb Salon)


Oh, ABC7, really?! (at MUNI Bus Stop - Geary & Divisidero)

Oh, ABC7, really?! (at MUNI Bus Stop - Geary & Divisidero)


nomi-malone:

billiethepoet:

mxdp:

ITV ordered Vicious Old Queens, a sitcom starring Ian McKellen and Derek Jacobi as an elderly gay couple living in Covent Garden

Yes. Very good. Very very good.

We’re going to be watching the hell out of this, right? 

Fuck yes.

OOOH!