Debating Debates

The first week of November, I guess we’ll have to remember there are other elections, other causes, other ways in which to get involved … here in the U.S. Hopefully, Americans will take the next four years to reflect on what brought us to this point in history. On EXACTLY where we are situated in relation to the rest of the world. On how we react to the media, to advertising in general, to each other. What we think about ourselves and our families and all humanity and the future of ourselves and this planet and what our responsibilities are to the future of the entire cooperative earth.
Or, depending on the outcome, we can start learning real survival skills, moving inland, gardening/canning/preserving, and collecting rainwater too. I may post more too. 🙂 who knows how long the power grid will stay up. I suggest we all use the internet to talk to one another about longevity and space travel–rather than for Twitter call outs and entitled bickering.
#justsomethoughts #newiceage #extinctionlevelevents #noonewillhearyourfirstworldscreams
(photo created with PRISMA app)

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Debating Debates

#throwbackEffinFriday

  
1. I made this Digital Painting myself, back on my birthday in November of last year when dinosaurs roamed the earth (what?) and hope was high and liiiiiife WORTH livinnnnnnnngggg…… I wouldn’t hang it in my house but it fits in your eyeballs.

2. I am 42 now, but I do not know The Awnser.

 3. I am grateful for a house full of clean laundry.

4. Obama is in Austin for Smurf by Smurf West. He is not coming to my house for dinner. I am trying not to feel surly about SX Or the length of my grass of that my garage is still in disarray-re.

5. Nonetheless, after alienating most of the Internet and nearly all my friends and loved ones with my anger and depression, I feel sort of on the ball and have arrived safely at adulthood without any truly alarming or self-destructive Incident. 
5. Stay tuned for exciting developments in the coming year such as personal successes and an improved commitment to flossing. Or don’t. You may be past done with my malarkey.

#throwbackEffinFriday

“Do I Want To?”

  
January. Not quite the start that I hoped for, but I am resolute.

I think one of the things that I have learned over the years is that I can only control what is INSIDE of me. I can’t expect perfection out of my grand plans. From these Resolutions. There is something to be said for the small, bite-sized goals–even though I prefer to be grandiose. I have allowed myself some grand plans, then. But they are not set in stones. So I have only made one real RESOLUTION; and lots of detailed, flexible lists.

My resolution? Just a question. 

“Do I Want To?”

More of a guiding principle, really. And then of course, the follow-on. 

“Then why am I______?” 

It could apply to everything. Places you are going. Clothes you are wearing. Food you’re stuffing into your mouth. Relationships you continue, or that you decide against will to break off because your family or friends disapprove. Alcoholic drinks you are consuming or maybe you are being too restrictive with your diets or excessive rules you apply to yourself. Do you really want to police every bite of sugar you eat all until the end of your days? Maybe not. Maybe YES. Who knows? Trips you are taking or are deciding not to take because you think you cannot afford them or they are too impractical. Maybe the wise choice, or maybe you are trying to please your inner miser. Or someone else’s …..

Think. About. What. YOU. Want. Your inner child. Your inner old person on their deathbed. WHAT DO THEY WANT? What will they say “DAMMIT, YOU!!!! Why didn’t you ______?!?!?!”

Then, do the things that you can control. You can try to do everything that is in your control that doesn’t involve making other people do things. Example: I can make music, but I might not get a Grammy Award. Doesn’t mean I shouldn’t try; that it can’t be a GOAL. I might even make it a goal.

#107. Write Grammy Speech.
#108. Collect award
#109. Don’t get drunk at party, old woman.

You can start dating again, but you may not be able to make that ONE guy love you. Maybe he’s just not that into you. Who knows? It’s just maybe not in the cards. Time moves forward. 

This is how being an individual in your own sphere of influence under your own control works. You are autonomous. You are part of a community, but you are unbreakable because you create your own options.

This is wildly unorthodox thinking. We are programmed to think of what our parents, our siblings, our teachers, our religions … Everyone but ourselves–might wish. But in the absence of our own wills deciding and of our own wills determining what we are basing our guiding principles on, chaos will rush to fill a vacuum.

I could say a lot more about the particular types of chaos that each of us might battle in our lives–but I think those are our own autobiographies. I have not decided how much I will start leaking out about my own, here. The nature of blogs has changed since I started my livejournal in 2001ish. But I can tell you that I once thought I would make all my back journals “private” because they just didn’t look very clean or professional. And now, I don’t care. I once went through this time called my 20s and 30s. I was younger and a little more immature. I was going through these times where I was growing and I had to learn stuff. 

I’m not editing a damn thing. Mistakes were made.

And even now, nasty surprises may come up. As a person, I’m a glorious mess. So yes to the pulling out of a rug of support under one’s feet when it is least expected. The changing of plans at last minute. The mercurial nature of finances. The invisibility of germs as long as they do not attack my more vulnerable friends (although they certainly mess me up QUITE enough). The heaping of emergencies on top of one’s head. All of the above and all at the same time, and all during the tenacious clinging of a nasty winter/summer/seasonal/jet-lag depression that is confusing as hell and won’t quite get shaken off. Maybe this makes better songs, sharper poetry. Maybe this creates CONTENT. It’s utterly miserable but I don’t care. Progress brings me out of it and makes me stronger and more resolute. And I remember that I can succeed. Plus, my lists are back on track. I have huge plans. I have a great support system in my life and at home. I’m very lucky in many ways that my worst enemy is myself. 
I will get braver this year and stop worrying about what shadows and phantoms lurking in the darkness might be thinking. I will continue to try to find the light, whatever this means. And no, things aren’t going poorly and I’m lucky and life is positive. As always, I could stand to lose a few pounds and for my dental hygiene to improve, as well as my mixing. I have serious plans for all of those concerns. Old patterns=old quilts. 

“Do I Want To?”

What Happens in Portland…

1. I’m back from a trip I took about a week and a half ago to Portland for this thing called SongFight! Live. I did my own tiny set for a mildly smily-but-challenging crowd. They were a bit more chatty than I’m used to, requiring me to bring out the emotional pyrotechnics and stage pizzaz. I’d give my performance a solid 6 out of 10.

2. Videos were made of this performance  and I put a couple of them on G+. You can find them then if you’re just DYING to see them. Otherwise, maybe I’ll post myself singing and playing music some other day.

3. I also sat in with someone and played Mysterious Organ, was in three-ish other bands on various instruments. and participated in the live fight wearing a green mask. There were glow sticks.


4. However, I probably caught Airline Hospitality Flu on the way up there. I did not know it at the time, and mistook the illness for a hellish evening of food poisoning that kicked off violent night shakes and sweating fever-chills with weird cold-y fatigue symptoms during the day. I felt gut wrenching guilt over other people’s (probably) unrelated colds, and obsession over germs I figured I’d certainly sprinkled willy-nilly over each shared meal. And I accidentally left a charming parasol behind in my hotel; although it had Random Chinese Characters on it. So in retrospect, perhaps I dodged a cultural insensitivity bullet.

5. All-in-all, it was a little hotelzo-hectic, and there were a few other really emo things that went down that are more diary-than-blog worthy. And they CERTAINLY, *CERTAINLY* aren’t social media worthy in my opinion. But there’s really no reason I should still be a wreck because there was lots of Nice. Yet I am still somehow moody and fragile and there’s also probably no Vitamin B left in my body–add to this the lunar landing modules are being trashed again by the Travelling Minstrels in Space and we all KNOW what THAT means …….

6. I’m going to BlogathonATX in September but I still need a ticket. I need to get geared up for this. I am also rather vigorously working on incidental and accompaniment music for a friend’s musical, and on my own Next Steps.

7. Anyway, this is my demeanor during and now after the trip. And I’m NOT in good driving mode anymore … off my game, so fellow Austinites are now trying to pick me off in this Automotive Darwinism thing we have going. Portland driving is very cerebral, motorists take the time to exchange meaningful eyerolls and fraught glances that could mean anything at all. And I wish I was used to the blind inconsiderate-ness of the driving back home yet, but I’m really angry still (I’ll tell my Highway Story later).

8. I don’t know how to act on social media anymore, that’s been utterly destroyed. I told a story on Twitter about a Thing that happened to me in Portland. EPIC saga of a man yelling at his companion … who then cleverly stole his keys while his back was turned! So I ended up being the person from out of town talking about people I don’t know behind their backs on the Internet. But I think I was just trying this ‘People of Wal-Mart’ style of “journalism” on to see if it worked. Why? Who cares? Does this have anything meaningful to do with my Portland experience? Maybe I am being too hard on myself and it was mildly clever entertainment. But did it do ANYTHING to edify or change my narrative? Should I have talked about what was REALLY going on?

What DID really happen in Portland and … in the last few years even, and why can’t I just DEAL? Why is this trip the mental situation, a Vest Factory come to a head? I played some music there. I had some interactions. I took a few photos. But, life is not a Wes Anderson film, and my head is not a pashmina to be wrapped around an elephant in the tastefully lit room.



9. I think it’s just going to take me a while to sort out my feelings.



But ultimately I can change and learn and adapt if I feel safe and can breathe. This is what I figured out.

10.   So I thought a lot in Portland and it turns out I’m not nearly as adept at subtlety or subtext as I thought I was. Nutshell–I know I didn’t fit in, but damn I over-tried. But it was Song Fight, so I ALWAYS try just a smidge too hard anyhow. And I’m usually overthinking what maybe probably isn’t an epic fail? Unless it was. Except it really wasn’t..? You know, or not. Hell, I don’t know. 



What Happens in Portland…

(untitled)

I will not die today, because it is raining.
Rain has already decided it is going to stop being sad in advance; because when the sky finally stops weeping, she will be told to take two naproxen sodium and get over herself. This is how things work with most hysterical diseases that leak from sockets. So the rain and I will learn from the sky and not feel typecast about these things. We’ll ride out the headache. It’ll be two coffees for us, thanks.

(untitled)

mayday (the summer comes in silence)

IMG_0096.JPG
it hits hard,
the perfume of coffins.
I’d rather have mosses.
I’d rather hide deeply in trees.

I’d rather just drink 
the laced water
and try not to slow-starve
while smiling.
I’d rather give up
than hope foolishly,
acting like this type of 
sunburnt, mosquito-drenched living
would suit me.

I’d rather accept …
just die gracefully,
not bite down the poison
and pretend the kind years
were anything more
than a sickness of jokes
and a windup of fears.
~5/1/2014

photo is from popular app game Monument Valley

mayday (the summer comes in silence)