Sunday, November 29, 2009

Moving right along...

What's that sound... is it a blog being written?  My, it's been quite a long time.  I'm all rusty, like a forgotten garden gate door.  Only that sounds much more interesting than I feel right now.  I've been experiencing the calling again lately to put words into the internet, but have once again, nothing in particular to write about.  Or maybe it's that I have TOO much going on, and don't even know how to begin.

So let's start somewhere simple.

I'm moving.  From Lombard to Berwyn.  (Cue Svengoolie sound bite.)

I've been in this apartment for six years now.  It is crumbling around me, and I've been anxious to move on for a very long time, but have not been sure how to proceed, or what would become of my future if I tried.  I kept thinking that maybe if I stuck around, it would be good again, just like it was at first, exactly what it had promised to be.  If I kept calling maintenance, eventually everything would be fixed, but despite efforts made, the problems remain beyond the skin of the apartment, like a cancer.  One thing would be repaired, and yet more dust and mold would appear, malignant and metastatic, and the next thing would break.  It's just not big enough for me, here.  I keep getting more stuff, good and bad, and the apartment is certainly not growing with me.

But there just weren't places that seemed good enough to move to.  I like the trees here.  I like the yard.  I like the bike path.  I like how close it is to everything I do and enjoy.  Nothing else seemed to offer the same, and I couldn't feature being happy anywhere else.  All I imagined waiting for me was misery and regret.

Then some things really broke.  Maybe for good.  Maybe not.  But I didn't know how these things could be fixed except by liberal applications of time and distance.  And I found myself going out to explore what it might be like outside of this apartment and it's loneliness.  Much to my surprise, good things happened.  I found myself thrust into the smiling face of excitement and joy.  Not at all the misery and regret I had been expecting.  And suddenly it was ok to move.

...By now, I hope you understand that by "move" I of course mean "move on."

And that I'm not just talking about my apartment.

Friday, November 20, 2009

The new Star Trek movie made me cry.

This'll be a hell of a way to get back into blogging, after all this time, but there are moments when I simply must say something, and I'm pretty sure that's what blogging is for, so here we go.

We saw the new Star Trek movie tonight, after what felt like a very long wait.  I'm not going to censor anything here, so look away, ye who want not to be spoiled.

Everything that has been said about it being a great movie is spot on.  Fantastic casting, and even though I couldn't see that guy as anything other than Sylar, he still managed to deliver one or two lines that made me believe he was Spock, simply because his impression of Nemoy was perfect.  The guy doing Bones was perfect, enjoyed him practically as much as I did the original character (which, I guess, doesn't say much because he was never my favorite character), and while we didn't get much Scotty, he was still delightful.  A little too over the top comedy relief, but that wasn't a bad thing.  Sulu and his portable, extendo-sword was great.

It was solidly written, aside from a couple random points, VERY well acted, and the casting was fantastic, like I said.

And I did not like it.

It was a GREAT movie.  I will tell everyone to see it.

... But I did not like it.

I'm going to be in the minority here, and I know exactly why and I'm perfectly ok with that.  Please suffer me my feelings on this matter, though.  I can't say for sure, but I might be the only one in here that had as strong an attachment to the original series as I did.  It was a very large part of my life right at the time when I was developing who I really was inside.  I studied original Trek - I didn't just enjoy it, I STUDIED it.  I checked out books from the library, I kept a journal on things I'd noticed about the writing, changes in costumes, character development.  It wasn't that I just cared about it as a fun show, it was that I couldn't get enough of the cultural impact it had during the sixties and early seventies.  I studied about the writers, about what they thought they were doing, and what they ended up actually doing to society... Hell, I even made little notes on my calendars that said silly things like "Kahn turns fifteen today."  In my early teens, I had a long period of studying pop cultural phenomena of the sixties and seventies.  I felt compelled to do so - it wasn't just interest, I literally needed to know.  Trek was part of this, and was part of me.  Before this, I had pretty much been weened on The Next Generation, and later I enjoyed very much fitting the time periods together, finding the holes, discovering homages, etc.

I don't expect anyone to care about all that, and that's not why I wrote it, but it's a piece of me that might explain my feelings about this film.  The people who are upset because this film "violates cannon" are fools.

This movie didn't violate cannon.

It obliterated cannon.

And it pretty much steps up to the screen and says, "Hey, you know all that stuff you've loved for the last fifty years?  We just made it all go poof."

I know that a lot of the movies were horrible.  I know a few of the SERIES were horrible, for god's sake.  I know there was a lot to hate about Trek.  But to get rid of ALL of it...?

... all of it...

And, of course, I see that unless they wanted to keep making more bad movies trying to salvage what had become of the Trek universe, they HAD to do something like this.  I realize that.  But I guess I would have been happier if they'd just let it... stop.  I would rather all of Star Trek die a peaceful, honored death than to have the entire history erased so it can start again.

And man... they erased the ENTIRE history.  They didn't leave a single scrap left for anyone that cared.  Kirk isn't even the same person because he doesn't grow up with a dad in this alternate reality.  He CAN'T be the same person.  Nothing can ever be the same.

As I was explaining to Brian in the car on the way home, it wouldn't have felt so bad if the worm hole had just taken them to an alternate DIMENSION.  With that at least you have the feeling, even if it's very bleak, that what you know and love is still out there somewhere.  No, the worm hole takes them to the past so that an entire alternate REALITY gets created.  There's nothing left to cling to.  It's bye bye to everything you knew.

My one flaw with the movie itself was how "old Spock" reacted to all of this.  He was noticeably, and appropriately, upset about the destruction of Vulcan.  Who wouldn't be.  And to consider the entire history of Vulcan for the next hundred and thirty years will never happen... it's devastating.  But he didn't seem at all to consider, react to, or even acknowledge the loss of HIS WHOLE LIFE'S MEMORIES.  Imagine living as long as he did, and having basically your last hundred and thirty fucking years ERASED.  Now you're too old to go back, and you just have to accept that everything that you knew, everything that shaped you, only happened in your own head, and no one will ever share that with you again.  It's not the same as losing all your friends because of old age.  It's losing all record and acknowledgement that your life, as you knew it, ever existed.  I refuse to believe that he'd just be ok with this.  I can't feature that he'd just shrug and sing que sera sera.

I feel hollow after watching this movie.  Hollow because I know that; unless they want to pull that annoying thing they do in comic books, where one writer decides to blatantly ignore something else another writer has done, and you end up with a zillion different Batman story lines; the time line of Trek that I grew up with, that I studied, that I loved my whole life, will NEVER be touched upon again.  Not in movies, not in television series, not in books... it's gone.  They've erased it.  And I feel like I've lost a friend.  Not only a friend, but the entire existence of a friend.

I don't particularly feel like debating this post because I'm actually really sad right now, even though I feel foolish for this sadness, and I have a lingering knowledge that I just watched a really good movie.  I know it was a good movie, and I know you are all right.  But I feel miserable.

(Originally posted on May 12th, 2009)

99% of humans shouldn't have pets.

First of all... I've been going to bed earlier. And by "earlier" I mean "before 3:00." I don't know if this is because I've been in an adrenaline slump and have been super tired, or maybe my circadian rhythms are becoming more even, or maybe I'm just trying to have more face time with that silly boy. Or all of the above. But for whatever reason it might be, that's why I haven't written in a while. Which is a sad thing to realize - I only write when I'm awake by myself after midnight. How productive of me. Bah. This has also thwarted several personal short story assignments I've wanted to complete. Go me.

Now, with that out of the way, I'll get to my real story. The Tale of the Foster Kitty; OR; How I Learned to Hate Everything Again.

So, two days ago, I was awakened before my alarm went off, by our across-the-hallway neighbor pounding on the door. I stumbled out in my robe and the old lady greeted me with, "You wanna come get your cat??" She wasn't mad, she was scared. This woman has a phobia of cats. A serious phobia. At least once before, my kitty has managed to sneak from our porch over to hers, where he then proceeds to sit on her porch and yowl at her door as if he thinks that's his sanctuary. While I see this as a combination of "aww" and "silly kitty," this old woman sees it as "he's trying to kill me." Fortunately I've convinced her that if she sees my kitty, she can come over and tell me and I'll "get him" for her, so she doesn't have to cower until he goes away, or worse, do something to make him go away.

This morning, as I looked at her manic expression, my brain was racing through a sleep induced cloud, thinking, "Wait, wasn't I just asleep with my kitty?" As I try to grasp this, Chai wanders out of the bedroom and confirms my suspicions. The woman sees him, flinches automatically, and says, "Oh, it's not yours? Oh, I'll just get rid of it then, you go back to sleep." Now, having heard her say things like, "I'll stomp it if it gets in here" about cats before, I quickly volunteered to rescue whatever cat was on her porch for her, whether it was mine or not. The woman was glad and hid in her bedroom until everything was safe again.

The kitty on her porch was a very young calico, thin and desperate, yowling to be let inside from the cold. My heart instantly broke as I lifted the little thing in my arms and took it to my apartment. She seemed very tame and loving, and since she was begging to be let in to an apartment, I figured she just had the wrong apartment. So I took her back outside and set her down, hoping she'd see her apartment and run home. She proceeded to jump to the nearest porch and start yowling, desperately, at the door again. I knew the person at this apartment was not her owner, so I coaxed her away and took her to a different building, hoping she'd find her way home from there. She ran up to another door, and then another, yowling and frightened. She was obviously lost. And what made matters worse was that she kept coming back to me in between doors and hiding near my feet, looking to me for comfort.

I knew I couldn't just go inside and forget about it, knowing there was a one percent chance that she'd discover her way back home before someone unkind discovered her first, plus the temp was dropping below freezing and it was starting to rain. She seemed miserable. So I took her back inside my apartment to think. Meanwhile, she was very happy inside my place, and purred loudly while weaving between my feet, thanking me for my kindness. Of course my kitty, Chai, was less than happy at this intrusion and there was lots of hissing and grouchiness, but the new little kitty didn't seem to mind and was happy to take a place in the bedroom to stay out of his way. I called the rental office to see if someone had reported a missing cat, or see if someone had recently moved to the complex with a cat, but the answer was no on both accounts. Then I took her to the vet (where Brian works) and they scanned her for a microchip, but there wasn't one, of course. Then the folks there were kind enough to test her for FIV and give her a little booster shot so I could take her back home and not worry that she was going to get my kitty sick. New kitty in hand, I headed back to my place.

The night passed and the little kitty slept on the bed with us, purring loudly. She began reaching out happily when I would enter the room, and enjoyed stepping up into my lap and rubbing my chin. Chai hated her, but was actually starting to get used to her, amazingly enough. "Behold the power of tuna," I texted, when I was able to feed him and the new little girl within two feet of each other, simply because they were both too hungry to care.

That's when I finally got around to making "found kitty" posters. I spent an hour tracking down a copy place that was still open last night, then almost froze my fingers off (no kidding, scarily enough) posting up seven of the signs on the apartment building doors. I had made forty signs and was going to complete the job the next day when it wasn't below zero outside.

We were just getting ready for bed, preparing for another night with the little girl when my phone rang. It was a woman saying she recognized the cat in the picture, and thought it might be hers. She lives on the floor above us. I said, "Is your cat missing?" and she said, "Well, I didn't see her around yesterday but I thought she might just be under the bed or something." Ahha. Then she said she was out walking her dog, but would be up in a couple minutes. Sure enough, one minute passed, and there was a knock at the door.

There was the woman. With her dog. And I swear to god, the little kitty literally turned around mid-stride and growled while walking quickly back into the bedroom. Then the woman's dog kept trying to run into our apartment and she yelled at it and yanked at it cruelly, and the kitty started hissing FROM THE BEDROOM. I picked the kitty up, and she looked at me, horrified, and I carried her out to the hallway again, and the woman said, "Yeah, that's her, how did you get out?!" And the cat clawed her way up and over me to get back into the bedroom to hide.

The woman then said she was going to put her dog back and would come back down for the cat. When she closed the door Brian and I looked at each other, then at the kitty, who was panicked. Brian said, "I think I'm going to cry." Then the woman came back down and we handed the kitty over, and she thanked us, and once again said, "How did you get out, Pooky?!" The cat scrambled in her arms trying to get away, and she put a vice grip on it and left.

We closed the door and looked at each other, knowing what the worst part of it was...

Are you ready? The worst part of it was:

IT WAS THE WOMAN WHO WENT TO JAIL FOR LETTING HER BOYFRIEND BEAT UP HER DAUGHTER LAST YEAR. Yeah. It was the same woman from upstairs that I wrote about in a post from many months ago, who's daughter came down and knocked on our door, looking for sanctuary and a phone to call the police the night her mother's boyfriend beat her up.

Good christ... it really can't get much worse than this. Not only did she not even know her cat was missing, but the cat obviously was TERRIFIED by her presence, and wanted nothing to do with her. I swear the little thing even looked at me, pleading for help, and I couldn't do anything.

I want to die. The idea that there are suffering pets all around me all the time is something that burns in my brain; an idea that I literally have to BURY to make it through each day. And usually I'm good at burying the idea, because there's just nothing I can do about it. Nothing real. Sure I can volunteer here and there, I can donate to causes, I can even be a super-bitch and constantly call cruelty agencies that can't do anything because there isn't any recognized cruelty occurring (because "cat is so unhappy" doesn't count as cruelty, unfortunately. Not even "cat is underfed and lives under the bed and probably never gets any love or attention." The fact that she's alive and is not being kept chained to a tree or in a box with no air holes is somehow enough to let her suffer through. Yay. YAY), but short of donning a superhero facade and attacking people by night, there's really nothing I can do.

I try not to think about it. And usually I succeed. Until things like this happen; until I get stared in the face and asked for help by a cat I saw smiling at me seconds earlier, knowing I'm turning it over to a bad person to live a miserable life until she either runs away again or dies...

So there's my story. I feel miserable. I hate people. How is it so hard to love an animal? How is it so hard for some people to understand? I would save an animal before I would save a kid, and especially before I would save another person, if only for the fact that there would already be fifty heros lined up to save the kid or the person, but no one there for the animal. "It's just a cat." "It's just a dog." People that say that should die. You're just one more person, and MUCH less important to me. In fact, your presence is more likely to be detrimental to my life than the presence of that animal over there, so please step aside if you don't mind.

Animals don't understand cruelty, they don't understand revenge, they don't understand that they are considered less important than us. Animals in need look for kindness and get shooed away or yelled at, and they don't understand why that is the reward for their devotion.

Poor kitty. My only consolation is that, if she thought she would get help by yowling at an unfamiliar porch, then she must think there is some kindness in people, which means she must have been treated at least slightly decently. And she was thin, but not skinny, and she didn't have any obvious diseases, so she was being somewhat cared for. And the woman was at least the type of person to go out and walk her dog, instead of just opening her door and shooing him out on his own, or even worse, putting him on the porch and just expecting him to crap in the corner because she's too lazy to go out with him. I'm hoping the kitty was just freaking out at the suddenness of the situation and is actually happy to be home.

But I can't forget her smiling little face when I was scratching her chin, and her wide terrified eyes as she tried to free herself from that woman's arms.

(Originally posted on February 28th, 2009)

If you see Amanda Palmer, kill her...

... because that way she'll live forever," said Neil Gaiman during his surprise cameo at the Amanda Palmer show tonight in Chicago.

But I'm getting ahead of myself. Let me start from the beginning.

Tonight I went into Chicago to see Zoe Keating live. She was opening for Amanda Palmer. I couldn't believe I had the opportunity to see the amazing Zoe Keating perform, and she was outstanding. You wouldn't think someone could layer six different parts onto one cello, but she can. Of course she can. So even though she only got to play three songs by herself, I stood next to the speakers the whole time, and could feel the vibrations in my shoes. It was spiritual.

Then we found out that we'd actually gotten there late, and the other opening band had already played, so Amanda Palmer was up next. Now... let me just preface with this - I don't particularly like Amanda Palmer's voice, OR some of her songs. I find her unmusical much of the time, and the chest voice she uses is just unnecessarily harsh sounding. All she does is bang on they piano most of the time (with some notable exceptions) and as a piano player myself, that always bothers me. But, god dammit. That woman can put on an AMAZING SHOW!!!!

First Neil Gaiman comes out, unexpectedly, as the audience gives a unison gasp and whips out cameras, and reads a long poem about the death of Amanda Palmer, while four performers slowly walk around the stage crying. They looked like moving statues - so very beautiful. And the costumes were astounding. I want to wear clothes like that all the time. (Correction - I want to live in a place where I can wear clothes like that all the time.) Zoe Keating played her cello for this as well, along with a waifish young british lad that looked like a Gorey illustration. Then the dancers slowly gather to the edge of the stage and you suddenly notice Amanda Palmer standing there, looking like the resurrected dead; the four people help her on stage out of the crowd and carry her to the keyboard, placing her hands on the keys.

The concert starts from there. It was great. The best parts were when the dancers would come back out and do some crazy choreographed number, including wandering through the audience with "will kiss for kash" signs during Coin Operated Boy. (This is not my video but one I found on YouTube. At least you can see what I'm talking about.)

And yes... they would kiss for cash. I didn't get to try this out, but I saw many and much boy-on-boy slobbering tonight.

The dancers included a lovely short haired blond girl, a voluptuous red head, a bald guy that looked for every ounce of his soul to be Billy Corgan of the Smashing Pumpkins (and I mean seriously, he even had the sneer right), and a plump dark haired guy who seemed to be the star of the little side show (and I found out later was the director of the theater group, so go figure). I would learn later that they were from Australia and had accepted the job of working with Amanda during her tour absolutely free. Which means that they got to wander through the audience asking for money to put in their boots at the end of the show. :) I gave deep.

Near the end, Amanda did a big number with the dancers where she lip synced to the song Umbrella while playing a ukulele. This is, again, not my video, but one I found on YouTube. If you can ignore the annoying girl singing over the video, it's a blast.

Anyway, various members of the opening bands would join songs from time to time, so I got to see much more Zoe Keating, as well as the band we'd missed to begin with, during the closing number where they all sang "Living on a Prayer" with the audience. The show closed with Amanda's new song Leeds United, every other band on stage playing with her, including the first band's brass section.

For some reason I looked at a young guy with a long brown beard, joyfully playing a black trumpet next to an old man with a long white beard, joyfully playing a brass trumpet, and I started to get a little misty. I always end up feeling that way when an overwhelming number of people get to participate in one big song together. I always got misty during the biggest numbers even back when I was in chorus. I get misty watching audiences sing along at concerts, especially when they can sing well. And I got misty tonight. Then suddenly everyone was doing a can-can across the front of the stage; performers, stage hands, roadies, security guards, and then an old man came up and joined the end of the can-can, dancing as best he could.

And I broke. A tear trickled out of my eye. I tried to smile it away. And then I felt another. And suddenly I knew I was crying. I was crying because I was watching an old man do the can-can on stage because he was so happy to be part of the music that everyone was enjoying, no matter how old or young, fat, thin, race, sexual orientation - everyone was in love and everyone was having the time of their life making music. And I was crying.

God dammit. I cried at an Amanda Palmer show. And I don't even like Amanda Palmer. :) (That is a lie after tonight, of course.)

After the show, we waited in the merch line for ever and ever, only to discover that Amanda was behind the counter giving autographs and love to everyone. And by love, I do mean love. I told her I wouldn't hold up her line, but the show was amazing and I reached out to give her a hug. She leaned forward, hugged me, then kissed me on the lips. Previously I'd seen a young lesbian literally BAWLING with joy at getting to hold Amanda in her arms. Amanda rocked her and coddled her until she stopped crying. What an amazing person. I also hugged the director of the theater troupe, and gave him more donation money. He was very, very nice.

The evening ended with us freezing our asses off getting back to the car to warm up and find our jackets (did I mention it was below freezing tonight? WELL BELOW), then eating amazing food and having dirty martinis at a restaurant that was almost next door to the venue, while getting to sing and play with the owner and our waiter, since we were one of only two groups of people at that restaurant that night.

What a good time. I can't believe I cried at a random show like this. And I kissed Amanda Palmer. I'm going to go to sleep now, and I'll probably dream of lovely women and beautiful music. I feel lost and happy, all at the same time.

(Originally posted on December 4th, 2008)

The inside of your brain should be silent on the outside.

You can tell how I felt about a movie by how quiet I am after watching it.

If I am chatty and laughing, generally I though it was either delightfully bad or unfortunately bad, but in one way or another, it was rather bad. Or maybe it was quite fun, but in no way important.

If I am absolutely catatonic, then the movie touched the inside of my brain in some way, and it was very good. I won't talk about it, I won't make eye contact, I keep my facial expressions to myself.

Today I watched a movie called The Man From Earth, and a movie called Twilight. The latter I chatted light-heartedly about. The former, however...

The point of me bringing this up is when I find a movie so good that I have to crawl inside myself and mull over my feelings, it really... really... REALLY bothers me when others want to talk about it immediately afterwards.

Seriously, am I the only person that realizes that you can ruin rarely gleaned introspective clarity by rehashing with stupid chatter the poignant moments that provided it to you? If you can't express yourself as well as the movie just expressed itself, seriously... just let the movie do the talking. I don't want to hear, "So, what did you think about when blanky blank happened?" I don't want to hear, "Oh, I particularly liked the part where blanky blanky deep thing happened." I REALLY don't want to hear, "What did YOU think of the movie, Krista?"

I actually almost yelled at someone today because they asked me that after the first movie I mentioned above. I wanted to say, "I know how I felt about it, and I'm not sharing it with you, because you should be sitting and thinking about how you felt about it too, instead of trying to talk to me!" What I ended up saying instead was simply, "You know I don't like to talk about good movies." Sigh.

Usually I just keep to myself when I walk out of a movie that puts me inside my brain and everyone I'm with is all chatty about it. Ooh it was so good, ooh we have to rehash it again and again and again, bla, bla, blaaaaa, ruin, ruin, ruin. Why can't you just let it ruminate inside of you, let it affect and change you in little ways, just hold something in and feel it more intensely for a second of your life instead of immediately expelling it again with hollow, shallow, idiot words.

There have really only been a handful of movies that have made me feel this way. I look back on some of them and KNOW in my heart of hearts that some of them were not good movies. But the interesting thing about these movies that get inside of me is that, unlike my personal list of "flawless" movies, which I can watch an infinite number of times and never get tired of, these movies that steal my consciousness I can watch only once. And never again.

I guess I'm afraid of ruining the memories of my strong emotional response. Or maybe I'm just afraid of finding those emotions again. Either way, no. I won't talk about it. And I won't watch it again.

So, if you're ever lucky enough to watch a movie with me and you notice afterwards that I'm really quiet, just... leave me be. Maybe you should take the opportunity to sit yourself down and wonder why it might have affected me so strongly. Maybe you should let it affect you too.

But whatever you do, don't ask me, "What did you think of the movie?"

(Originally posted on November 30th, 2008)

Story Time

Well, October is over, kiddies, and that heralds my ungraceful return to the internet. Sure, there's stuff happening in November; my folks are coming into town for Thanksgiving, and Bruce Campbell is coming in the same week for his new movie My Name is Bruce. But it's just not the same without Halloween's crisp chill in the air. (Not that I need Halloween to be excited by Bruce, but you know what I mean. Mmmm... Bruce Campbell...)

So, to take my mind off the passing of last month, I'll share with you all a little story. I just told someone this story again tonight, after not having though of it for years, and it delighted me so much, I just wanted to tell it again.

Let me take you back to North Carolina... college... a land and time far, far away...

I was somewhere between the ages of 18 and 20, and I was shopping at Target for a picture frame.

As I studied various frames, I noticed out of the corner of my eye, a middle aged man in a wheelchair rolling past one end of the aisle. A couple minutes later, he rolled past the other end of the aisle. It occurred to me that maybe he was contemplating the easiest way to get into the narrow aisle with me standing there.

As I turned to leave, hoping to give the man room, he wheeled his way into the aisle, and slowly approached me. I tried to flatten myself against the shelves, hoping he would have room to pass without feeling awkward.

As I stood there, he rolled slowly up to me, I thought, trying to maneuver around me carefully.

Instead, he stopped right in front of me.

He looked up.

He gave two excited thumbs up.

And he said, with a giant grin, "Great chest!!"

Then he hurriedly rolled away.


I was so startled, I actually said thank you.


(Originally posted on November 8th, 2008)

If you name a thing, you have power over it.

I've been feeling the urge to write something for a while now, but I can't wrap my brain around a specific topic to write about. Lots of things have come to mind... none of them are worthy of being shared. I'm sure the second I post this, I'll think of something much better. But for now: a survey! :) And not only a survey, but a survey in which every name I created answered a question that wasn't asked... Enjoy.

The Nine Names of the Beast​


Krista Soli
(Years from now, when I'm famous [or infamous], I'll regret posting all this information on here. But for now, while no one cares...)

2. YOUR GANGS​TA NAME (​first​ 3 lette​rs of real name plus ' izzle​'​)​:​

(Yeah, I took out an i - what of it?! You want a piece of Krizzle?! I feel like this is actually my secret Santa Clause name...)

3. YOUR DETEC​TIVE NAME (​favor​ite color​ and favor​ite anima​l)​:​

The Black Cat
(This also serves as my criminal mastermind name, I think... I'm a double agent.)

4. YOUR SOAP OPERA​ NAME (​your middl​e name and stree​t you live on/​or neigh​borho​od if it's a numbe​r)​:​

Marie Lynn
(... eeeewww...)

5. YOUR STAR WARS NAME (the first​ 3 lette​rs of your last name,​ first​ 2 lette​rs of your first​ name)​:​

Sol Kri
(... and here's where I added the i I removed from the earlier question. Because, call me crazy, but you just can't have "Kr" as a name, no matter how LucasCrazy you are. So, this is apparently my Jewish name, what with the "Sol" part...)

6. YOUR SUPER​HERO/​CRIMI​NAL NAME (​Your 2nd favor​ite color​,​ and favor​ite drink​)​:​

Blue Milkshake
(HAHAHA! This is apparently my stripper name... Every question is wrong. Every single one.)

7. YOUR IRAQI​ NAME (2nd lette​r of your first​ name,​ 3rd lette​r of your last name,​ 1st lette​r of your last name,​ 2nd lette​r of your moms maide​n name,​ 3rd lette​r of your dads 1st name,​ 1st lette​r of a sibli​ngs first​ name,​ and last lette​r of your moms first​ name)​:​

(Yeah, I added an apostrophe because, uh... I'm calling that one a Cthulian name. Ia, ia, R'lsarn!)

8. YOUR PORN STAR NAME (​first name of your pet and name of street where you lived as a kid​)​:​

Chai Fiffers
(... the fuck?)

9. YOUR GOTH NAME (​black​,​ and the name of one of your pets)​:​

(So, the cat's name is Chai, but his nickname, which he responds to instead of his proper name, is "Mas." And I think that Blackmas should be celebrated everywhere. I'm going to go deck the halls right now, in fact. Merry Blackmas to everyone.)​

(Originally posted on October 10th, 2008)

Oh what a night...

I have just played with guitars, sang, drank lubricating quantities of liquor, and shaved two boys' heads into mohawks.

I have now decided that you are not truly friends with someone until you have a spontaneous head shaving party. I have also decided that all boys should have sexy hawks. And should be drummers or guitar players. Or sing. Yes.

I have also realized that after 2:00am on Saturday night, NickToons shows Ren and Stimpy and Invader Zim... Who knew?

(Originally posted on September 7th, 2008)

Chicago loves me not.

I have come to understand something.

Chicago is like a cool person that doesn't want me around.

I wander around after Chicago, far too impressed, far too interested, a little scared, trying to be friends with Chicago, hoping Chicago will notice me. But Chicago has better things to do. Chicago brushes me off. I try to catch Chicago's eye and make Chicago smile, but all I get is a patronizing smirk. Chicago makes jokes about me to it's friends while I'm standing right there, pretending to think that I don't hear. Chicago knows I can hear.

Chicago doesn't love me the way I want to love Chicago. I want Chicago to think I'm sexy and cool, but I'm pretty sure Chicago doesn't think anything about me at all. I try to be pretty for Chicago, but Chicago sees prettier girls to look at. I try to be funny for Chicago, but Chicago never laughs. Chicago is too cool for me.

You can't go into Chicago looking for adventure and fun. You have to go to Chicago with an already well founded base of your own happiness. You are not allowed to care about Chicago or want to be with Chicago. You have to have your own agenda and already be excited about your own things, because if you look to Chicago for happiness and excitement, Chicago will be disgusted with you.

Needless to say, my time in Chicago is never what I want it to be. I always feel let down, like I just didn't fit in and simply wasn't allowed to enjoy myself. Maybe if I moved to Chicago it would be a little nicer to me. Maybe it would just think I'm stalking it and would give me the cold shoulder. Who knows. For right now I'll keep working at Chicago, trying to convince it that I just want to be friends, and maybe some night I'll crack it and I'll notice it smiling at one of my jokes, in spite of itself.

Or maybe I'll just move and try to meet a different city.

(Originally posted on September 2nd, 2008)

Must... keep... writing...

I don't want to go to bed.

I'm tired. I'm really tired, and I have to work tomorrow, and I have a lot of stuff to do tomorrow outside of work. It will be stressful and things may or may not fall apart, just like they always do when I need them to go right. I should go to bed.

But dammit. I don't want to go to bed. I want to talk. All the websites that I check seem to have gone to bed without me... no more new posts... nothing to talk about... but I'm not done yet. I'm not ready. I still want to say something. I still want to discover something or be impressed with something; I still want to create.

That's right. Welcome to crazy midnight Krista-town.

I really wish I could look forward to dreaming. I have this misguided feeling inside of me, of a lurking "Oh boy, I can't wait to dream!" as if it's an episode of a TV show that I love. But there's no guaranteeing that I will dream if I go to sleep. And there's no guaranteeing that I will dream what I want to dream even if I do dream. I really, really, REALLY wish there was a way I could program my dreams. To set up scripts or scenarios and watch them play out. Like an effortless, magical theatre, where all the players come from who knows where and go back that way once the night is over; no rehearsals, no audience, just the IT of it all. And you're the star. If you want to be. It would be like playing pretend... GOD I miss being a kid and having that still be an acceptable game. Why doesn't anyone play pretend anymore?!

I want to go to bed and instantly start dreaming. Because I'm not ready to sleep. I'm ready to DREAM. Stupid human brain, why can't I control you and the mysteries of the universe a little better?!

Alright, here's crossing my fingers for a dream. A fun dream. And exciting dream, featuring everyone I want to think about. I would even take the uncomfortable situations right now. I'd take the random guest appearances by people I never think about. I would take a nightmare. I just don't want to be alone in my head...

Someone come join me in my dreams, ok? I'll see you in about thirty minutes. (Be there or be square.)

(Originally posted on August 27th, 2008)

If Lovecraft had been a confectioner...

I stole this from my buddy Greg who stole it from McSweeny's Internet Tendencies. Mmmmm... unfathomable chocolate...

by Luke Burns

- - - -

White Chocolate Truffle

What black arts could have stripped this chocolate of its natural hue? The horror of the unearthly, corpselike pallor of this truffle's complexion is only offset by its fiendish deliciousness.

Nut Cluster Crunch

This eerie candy will test the sanity of all but those who possess the strongest of constitutions. Strange congeries of almonds, walnuts, and pistachios dance hypnotically within, promising to reveal their eldritch secrets to anyone foolish enough to take a bite of these ancient nut clusters!

Coconut Creme Swirl

They say that the Coconut Creme Swirl sleeps. But if the dread Coconut Creme Swirl slumbers, surely it must also dream. It is certain that while it dozes the Coconut Creme Swirl is absorbed by terrifying visions of exacting its creamy tropical vengeance upon mankind! Consume the Coconut Creme Swirl before it awakens to consume you!

Dark Chocolate Fudge

Dark! All-encompassing, eternal darkness! Human eyes cannot penetrate the stygian blackness of this unholy confection!

Peanut Butter Cup

In 1856, a fisherman from a tiny hamlet on the New England coast made a terrible pact with serpentine beasts from beneath the sea, that he might create the most delicious sweet seen upon the Earth since the days of the great Elder Race. Thus was forged the satanic pact between peanut butter and chocolate that resulted in the mutant offspring you see before you!

Chocolate Cherry Cordial

You must not think me mad when I tell you what I found below the thin shell of chocolate used to disguise this bonbon's true face. Yes! Hidden beneath its rich exterior is a hideously moist cherry cordial! What deranged architect could have engineered this non-Euclidean aberration? I dare not speculate.

Caramel Chew

There is a dimension ruled by a blind caramel God-King who sits on a vast, cyclopean milk-chocolate throne while his mindless, gooey followers dance to the piping of crazed flutes. It is said that there are gateways in our world that lead to this caramel hell-planet. The delectable Caramel Chew may be one such portal.

Toffee Nugget

Few men dare ask the question "What is toffee, exactly?" All those who have investigated this substance are now either dead or insane.

(Originally posted on August 21st, 2008)

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Not a good dream.

I haven't remembered a dream in a while, but this morning I did remember one, and it wasn't very pleasant.

The only good part was that it involved David Tennant, who was obviously supposed to be Curtis Rx (but looked only like David Tennant). That's where the yay ends.

Because in this dream, I have somehow stumbled upon David Tennant's home address. And before I know it, I've decided to tease myself and drive there, just to see it. But I find myself parking my car somewhere on the side of the road, away from eyes, and walking up to the back door.

What the fuck am I doing.

And then I try to door knob. I know that this is WAY not ok, and if he catches me, I'm instantly on the outs, in an illegal not even close to being a friend sort of way. And since he knows me, knows my face (because David Tennant is Curtis) it would be extra bad, extra betraying, extra hurtful. I'm officially a stalker if I'm caught, so why the hell am I turning the knob?

But I turn it, and the door opens. I can hear a TV playing, and as I creep down a hallway, I suddenly spy David around the corner, watching TV. He's facing the hallway, but fortunately he's looking at the TV that must be against the wall around the corner. I dive into a nearby bathroom door and sit in the dark, heart racing. The door is mostly closed, but I can see him out of the crack of the hinge side. I feel absolutely panicked, because how in the fuck can I get out of here without being seen, but suddenly I am distracted by a bunch of family photos that are on a shelf. There is a red headed sister figure, and a brother that looks a lot like him, and then I slip and make a tiny noise.

I freeze and look out of the crack of the door. David is looking towards the door, frozen. Then I am suddenly afraid the door is leaning open, so I pull at it, and it makes a big obvious movement, and he bolts from his chair, horrified that someone is in his house, and dashes for the bathroom.

I streak from the bathroom before he can grab me, and he is shouting, but he hasn't seen my face. I just pray to god that he doesn't recognize the outfit I'm wearing, since it's the same thing I had on at the Creature Feature show (which has somehow, horribly, become a purple tutu and purple and pink striped leggings... don't ask me). I feel just fucking awful, and know there will be no way to appropriately apologize for breaking into someone's house. "I was curious," just doesn't cut it. I'm in tears with panic and regret. I'm also quite sure I will NEVER be able to outrun a 6'3" man.

But somehow I slip away from him back through a different part of the house, ending up in the garage. I hunker down and see him run across the lawn outside, then stop and look around frantically. I puts his hands on his head and looks terrified, angry and miserable. I want SO BADLY to make this right, but the only thing I can do is get the hell out of dodge at this point.

Then, out of the blue, guests start arriving at his house, some of the family I recognize from the pictures, and he desperately asks them if they were playing a prank on him just a minute ago. They give him blank looks and he dashes off again, practically running around in circles at this point, not knowing where to turn. I'm sure he's seconds away from calling the police, so I take a final mad dash out of my hiding spot (bumping through guests who don't know who I am or what's going on) and streak out to my car. It's dark at this point, so I know he can't tell it's me, and doesn't know I was the one in the house, even if he can see me get in my car. I have a last desperate thought about whether he might recognize my car, but drive off and wake up before anything else happens.

I've felt weird and sad all day because of this dream. Nothing like a dream to point out to you, blatantly, that you are nothing more than a creepy fan that will only ever bother and terrorize the important people you love. I feel like I really need to apologize to someone, but I don't know who, or what to say. "I'm sorry I apparently have it in me to break into your house - please forgive me and still be my friend." But do I apologize to Curtis or David Tennant?! Bla - stupid brain.

What a bad dream.

(Originally posted on August 17th, 2008)

Herbert West

I have just finished listening to Jeffrey Combs reading the Herbert West story on an audio book from the H.P. Lovecraft Historical Society's Lovecraft Audiolibrary.

It was so good. SO. GOOD. For some reason I didn't remember just how many elements they did correctly in the first two Reanimator movies...

I can think of three people off the top of my head that would like to hear this. If you are one of them, let me know. Because my god, that was well done. Jeffrey Combs is such a delight. I almost wish I hadn't met him in person, so my impressions of him could have remained untouched (as it is, I know he's not exactly the person I keep seeing in movies... sadly... he's a bit more of a California boy than I had expected...).

It was much better than listening to Mia Farrow read Rosemary's Baby. :)

(Originally posted on July 30th, 2008)


I have come to believe that our apartment carries some sort of psychic residue in it. Either that or I do. I wouldn't say it's a curse, but it's definitely a strange trend that I can't explain.

People come to our apartment door for help. People we don't know at all. I don't know if we're the only people that answer our door when someone knocks, and maybe these individuals have tried other doors before ours, but whatever the reasons is - people come to our apartment when they need sanctuary. We're like some sort of chapel. We give safety. And people can mysteriously tell this.

Several years ago, a woman came to our door in the middle of the night saying she had just been raped and needed to call the police. She came to OUR door and no one else's. I brought her water and gave her a dry pair of socks because she had been out in the rain. She was obviously drunk, but understandably upset and I sat with her until the police came to help. I gave her a glass of water before she left.

There used to be a kid downstairs that would come up when he really needed a ride to school because he had missed the bus trying to get his baby brother to a babysitter. It seemed like a relatively noble reason to have missed the bus, so I would help him whenever I could.

Another kid once came up once because he needed someone to help him with his homework. Why he thought I must be a random smart person that wouldn't mind helping with homework, I have no idea, but it happened and I helped and he had a good time doing it because he was with me.

Tonight, a young girl from upstairs came to our door because her mother's new boyfriend had just beaten her and she needed to call the police and find somewhere else to stay. I've never spoken to this girl before, but she came right to our door. I have no idea why. I gave her a big hug before she left and told her she could come back if she ever needed to.

I do not consider myself any kind of philanthropist. I lean towards mostly hate and ill will for the entirety of the human race. But when an individual comes to me for help, I'll suddenly do everything I possibly can to help them. I offered to drive this girl wherever she needed to go, but when she said her aunt's house was really far away I almost had her sleeping on our couch until I thought to call her a cab so she could be with people she knew. When the police came and took her statement, they then left to get the statement of her mother upstairs, and seemed to vanish, so I called the police department back for her to find out if they were going to provide her with an escort. I walked with her when she was too scared to go outside the apartment. I have no idea why I am compelled to do things for people that need me, but suddenly I can turn into everyone's mother at the blink of an eye.

Somehow my random nuturing must leave some sort of residue on the apartment, because people keep coming back. I just think it's weird that these things keep happening. This is not a particularly bad apartment complex or a violent neighborhood, but whenever something does happen, people come here. I've never had this happen at any other apartment I've lived in.

My number must be scrawled on some universal bathroom somewhere, "For a safe time, call Krista."

(Originally posted on July 14th, 2008)

Flawless Celluloid

Here are a few movies I find to be flawless in every way.

I'm not saying these are the best movies ever made; I'm not saying these movies are better than any other movies as far as content; but what I am saying is that these movies are flawless. They are exactly what they are supposed to be. Written exactly right, acted magically, pacing, timing, from opening title to credits - perfection.

I've decided upon these titles in the last five years. These are all films I've seen many, many, MANY times, but only in the last five years have I come to understand that these movies are what movies should be. If you make a movie but you have to admit, "Well, it wasn't as good as THAT," then you should just scrap it and try again.

This list will grow, I'm sure, but it will never shrink. You ready?...

1 -- Evil Dead 2
Now, I know there's no comparison between it and Evil Dead, and it's bizarrely comedic at certain moments and some of the effects are laughable, but... that's the way it's supposed to be. This movie is exactly right. Campbell's flawless rubberface delivery, the laughing room scene, the hand - it's perfect.

2 -- Young Frankenstein
If you've never seen any of the original Frankenstein movies you should watch them and then watch this movie, and then you'll realize that it manages to somehow capture the exact mood and even continuity of all the previous "serious" preceding titles. The names are all right, the characters, and hell, even the inspector is the same! It's amazing the things they did for this film, even to the point of using the original laboratory equipment from in the original movie. And if that weren't already above and beyond what this movie should have been, the comedic timing can never be duplicated. Every line is perfection, and I bubble with unbidden laughter every time it's on. "Sedagive?!!"

3 -- Demon Knight
This movie made me love Billy Zane and William Sadler. The pacing of this film is better than it has any right to be, and the dialogue between those two actors gets me every time. I'd stick in a quote here, but there are just too damned many for me to choose from. This is on TV right now, and it's about the millionth time I've seen it, but I have only just been inspired to write about it. Perfection. I would not be able to feel joy without this movie.

Anyway... there's my list as of right now. I am filled with movie love. Mmmm... tasty, tasty celluloid.

(Originally posted on June 30th, 2008)

The Curse

I carry with me a curse, friends. It is a cruel curse... terrible... unfair.

I have with me the curse of magically shutting down any business I decide that I like in IL. It is inevitable. If I go somewhere and end up thinking, "Hey, this place is great, this is the place for me!" the axe will fall, the smiting will happen, and next time I try to visit this place, it will be boarded up, closed, gone.

Here is a list of places I've loved in Illinois that have closed up in the last four years:

-- McNally's (the best Irish pub in the West Suburbs, and just down the street from our comicbook store)

-- Chocolate Moon (a delightful coffee/ice cream/misc. nook that had a big chalk board wall for doodling)

-- The Twisted Spoke (fun bar/restaurant in Chicago that showed porn on Saturday nights and let you order from the breakfast menu... it was called "Smut and Eggs" night...)

-- Coldstone Creamery (within biking distance of me, the only really good place to ride our bikes to, and now it's gone. Apparently chains are not immune to my curse)

-- Hollywood Video (nearly killed the entire chain in this state simply by it being one of the only fun places we went for a year)

-- Rollypolly Wraps (gone a buried in Elmhurst as soon as I realized, "Hmm, I don't know if I could live without this Salmon wrap, it's so nice.")

-- Mitoodle Noodle (family owned noodle shop we should have never eaten at... poor folks)

-- Riley's (the best and only place to drink in our entire town, where everyone from my school went. I only got to visit three times before the curse hit)

-- The Book Cellar (an amazing little used book store in Naperville that we just discovered had closed yesterday)

-- Ice Delight (a little ice cream/misc. shop in the middle of Lombard that we rode our bikes to ONCE before it BURNT TO THE GROUND)

-- The Taco Bell that we used to go to because it was close to where Brian worked (and only that one that we went to... no other one...).

-- The Bakers Square that we get birthday pies from (closed pretty much ON my birthday, just to underscore the curse).

So now you see... now you see. Exaggerating? You may have thought so, but can you deny these numbers? Can you?! And this is just the stuff off the top of my head. All in only four years. And I know it's all my fault. Rest in peace, you delightful little stores. You're in a better place now, I'm sure.

Somehow this is a personal sign from Illinois to me. A sign that I'm not allowed to enjoy myself. Illinois is some sort of purgatory for me, a carrot on a string. So close to having fun, and then yanked away before I can get the smallest bite. I guess it's true, you can never have your cake and eat it too.

*shakes fist to sky*

(Originally posted on July 1st, 2008)

The Case of Howard Philip Lovecraft

I watched this tonight, and loved it. It is a 45 minute interperetive style documentary that was comprised "one third about Lovecraft's work, a third about his biography, and a third about his times." (That's a quote from the director. This is a French film, by the way, but the dubbing is really good.)

It is introduced as a storytelling device - literally how to tell a story - and slowly evolves into a narrative drama, instructing you, the audience, on how to be Lovecraft in a story, and then in his life, what you are thinking at certain times, how you deal with situations, and the way in which your mind works.

Eventually the narration begins to overlap the story of Charles Dexter Ward, and finally winds up with Lovecraft's illness and death. "You are 46. You die with no complaints; no regrets. But then... you didn't care for life anyway."

There are never any actual characters, just a monotonous narration that occasionally grows ominously dark or manically high pitched depending on what exerp from what story is being read (story narration is mixed in with the narration about "your" life) and a silhouette of Lovecraft that we follow around through sometimes realistic and sometimes fantastic settings, always dream-like.

And outside of the racism (because, heh, no), I am sincerely fascinated to find, at least in this portrayal, just how much alike the inside of my head is to the inside of Lovecraft's head. I'm sure this bodes very badly for me. But it does explain why I was always attracted to his stories so very deeply...

My favorite line is, "You detest Jesus for having substituted the glorious cults of the pagan world with an insipid and whiney religion."

(Originally posted on May 29th, 2008)

Naughty smiles.

I am mildly obsessed with this. Ok, I'm NOW only mildly obsessed with this. About three weeks ago I was MADLY obsessed with this. It kept me from sleeping one night, to be exact. :) This is not my fault, because I really, really love David Tennant, and the person that put this together was obviously trying to harm me with a concentrated dose of things I should not think about David Tennant if I want to stay sane. I will blame that person.

This song will also get stuck in my head if I even see the link sitting on my desktop. So, to save myself the agony of ever having to look at this link again and think of this delightful music video, I will post it in here. It will be saved, shared, and I will be free of it. And I will pass the burden onto you. :)

Anyway. Enjoy the naughtiest David Tennant montage on the internet.

(Before you continue, this is not safe for work, parents, or any other naughty-free zone. Play it only late at night, and be ready to put the computer to the safety of a screen saver at any moment.)

(Originally posted on March 25th, 2008)

Smoke, blood and moonlight.

I don't like a-melody. I don't like yelling, rasping, or noise in songs. I don't like unhewn recordings.

That having been said, there is one album in the world that I can't pull myself out of, and it has all of those things. And they are as right as the moon in the night sky.

This album is Bone Machine by Tom Waits. I try from time to time to convince myself that my favorite Tom Waits albums are maybe Mule Variations... maybe Real Gone... Maybe even Alice. But then I play Bone Machine. And I am put into a different world and reminded, very aggressively, that this album, THIS album dammit, is the one that owns my soul, and don't forget it again, little girl. Yes, sir. Yes, sir.

This is not the first time I've listened to this album, and it won't be the last. I first heard Bone Machine when I was 17. It's been with me ever since. It was the first thing I could ever describe as "just right." The songs on it are noisy, they grind and pound on you, they get dust in your lungs and smell like stale beer and dried blood. I should hate them. I should need never to hear them. I should want them to die. I like melody and harmony, I need clear tones, prisms of refined sound in my songs. This has none of that. It's raw and primal and it eats me alive. And I love it.

This album reminds me that I am a woman, simply because of how much throbbing testosterone flows through it. I just about beat the inside of my car to pieces listening to it on the way home tonight. It makes me need to be around men, smell sweat and age, to feel the scrape of an unshaven cheek against my skin, strong arms around me, a little too rough, a little too hard. Never hard enough.

First the Earth Dies Screaming, and you feel the ravaging chaos, society gone, back to aboriginal times, only blackness and simplicity. Then we're all just Dirt in the Ground; a slow, agonizing dirge. But then you're pulled back into a frenzy with She's Such a Scream; halo, wings, horns and a tail, shoveling cole inside my dreams, she's such a scream. By the time you get to The Ocean Doesn't Want Me, if you're not seeing dark and mysterious pictures before your eyes, there's something wrong with you. What a piece of prose, that one. But then... then you get to my four favorite songs, all in a row, with no hope for escape. First In the Colosseum is there to whip me with chains and squeeze lemon juice into my cuts, and make me want more, but before I can recover from the debauchery, I'm hit with Going Out West... I almost don't even have words for how much I love this song. It's so... it's so good. It's the manliest song I've ever heard. It puts hair on MY chest (and I have a lot of chest to cover). But once you've ripped a phone book in half because of Going Out West, you get pulled into a dark, dusty fairy tale with Murder in the Red Barn. I always imagine myself singing this song in a smokey club, wearing a black dress with ripped stockings, nursing a whiskey on the rocks, "Cause there's nothing strange about an axe with bloodstains in the barn; there's always some killing you got to do around the farm." Finally, you get to Black Wings, which is the most lovely song ever written. If Black Wings was the bible, I would find religion.

God, my mind is trapped in a different land. I will never sleep again, and the sun will never rise as long as I keep listening to this album. It hurts me. I need to touch someone right now, and I need them to like it - to NEED it as much as I need it. My skin does not belong on my body.

Whew. Music does things to me...

(Originally posted on May 19th, 2008)

Ladislaw Starewicz and the best stop motion animation of all time.

I am suddenly addicted to the stop motion animation of Ladislaw Starewicz.

I just watched "The Mascot" which was an extra (what?) on the DVD of Vampyr I saw tonight. Incredible. I wouldn’t recommend trying to watch the versions of this that seem to be floating around YouTube as the modern music is just... wrong... But if you can find this somewhere, DO IT. It features, as tertiary characters, a reanimated chicken skeleton (and even creepier, it’s reanimated egg/skeleton/chick thing), a thug doll, various and sundry straw beasts, and last but not least, the devil, that pops up as a living SPILL from a discarded wine bottle.

Let me reiterate that last part; a wine bottle is discarded, it spills as it hits the curb, and the spill TURNS INTO THE DEVIL. Amazing.

(Originally posted on April 9th, 2008)

And then just like that...

And then just like that, life is worth living again.

It’s sunny today. So very sunny. So very nice. I little bit windy for my taste (and my tresses) but otherwise, perfection. I can hear frogs and birds outside, and it’s a delightful 68 degrees out, with just a few cloud. It’s my favorite temperature right now - somewhere between 55 and 70. I don’t like it much hotter, and any colder and you have to wear a jacket and the out of doors doesn’t feel quite as delightful. Illinois is always too windy... it’s simply never still. I appreciate the stillness more than this state allows me. But for this feeling right now, I can stand a little wind.

I had a great dream yesterday morning that made me feel about 85% better than I had been feeling. It was like a brain purge. Very realistic, and nothing but pleasant. I dreamed I was at a party with a couple of people that I had been very much wanting to see. I spent a lot of time talking to, hugging, and dancing with one of them in particular, and it was someone I’ve been desperate to be talking to, hugging, and dancing with (which is funny because I don’t dance). So, thank you, brain of mine. I woke up feeling like I’d had fun all night and everything was right the next morning.

Then this morning I had another dream that included the same person. This dream was about something entirely different (me not being prepared for a massage due to some impending out of state move), but at one point I went into another room, sat down, and randomly started talking to this person who magically happened to be there. We chatted and laughed and shared music and book recommendations. I played with his hands, and wrapped his arms around me, and he didn’t seem to mind. Then I told him I was going to tell my clients that they had to reschedule, since today’s massage was obviously not going to work out, and he was in the rest of the dream, in the background, waiting for me. I woke up not long after that, but it was still very nice. I mean, just really... really pleasant. Fun.

This happens to me very rarely - I will end up thinking about something so much that I inevitably force my brain to have these odd, very realistic dreams about the subject. Almost like I’m projecting myself somewhere else in order to get what I really want. They’re honestly so realistic that I can never quite convince myself that it didn’t happen. As in "Yes, I had a real conversation with this person, because I summoned the real them into my dream." Some day I will find out if the other parties that show up in these types of dreams have also had similar dreams in which they’re talking to me (or in most cases, talking to some girl they don’t know, or have only met a couple times in real life). It’s just so very real. If I had casted a spell demanding an audience with a certain party and then I had one of these dreams, I would only have to believe that my spell had worked.

Anyway, I had that dream this morning, woke up and wrote it down, then immediately went outside to take a walk. I wore jeans and a tank top and left my hair down. The sun made my shoulders and face warm. On my walk I passed a running stream where there was a giant blue crane that must have been five feet tall with it’s neck extended, fishing along the water’s edge. A blue jay flew right past my face. I watched some people playing soccer. I watched the rolling water. And then I considered walking to the graveyard. I didn’t know how muddy it would have been trying to get out there, or how much traffic I would have to dodge, so I didn’t do it. But I have to say it - days like these really make me want to go walk around in graveyards.

Somehow I remember feeling my best on sunny days like this when I’m walking around in graveyards. It’s the only place where I won’t have to see people. Not living ones. :) And I can look at dates and names and imagine life stories and imagine what the land looked like a hundred years ago. I really want to walk out to the giant boulder I found in the woods near the highway last year, commemorating the first log cabin built in the county. I like to think about that place too. But I wish someone was with me.

Maybe after I grab a shower I can drive out to Archer Avenue and enjoy the hundreds of graveyards and parks out there. I keep considering finding an apartment complex out that way to move to because I just feel so damned good out there. I’d spend every day in the graveyards and the woods, and I’d spend at least one night a week sleeping in various haunted locations, waiting for ghosts. It makes me feel happy and complete just thinking about it. But I don’t know about the people out there, and it’s kind of far away from all of our jobs, so I’ll probably never get to live out there. But I’ll still go there on sunny days and misty nights and feel just right.

I know tonight I’m going to be antsy. Whenever I feel good like this I end up getting a craving, nay an absolute NEED, for creativity. I get this desire for catacombs and hidden doorways and stories. I can’t tell if I want to write a story or draw a picture or make a sculpture, take photographs, or make a whole damned movie. I know what I really want is for everything I’m imagining to happen around me. I want to dress up and find my story and live it. I want to be immersed. And since that won’t happen, I just have to summon it there, by creating it myself. Unfortunately I never get to do anything with these creative urges. Well... almost never. I’m usually alone and no one will help me, and I don’t want to end up getting into trouble by driving out by myself to somewhere forbidden. And even if I did, who would I end up telling the story to?

I feel like I’ve lived lifetimes before, because of all the things I understand and desire. I am old beyond anything I should be, but only behind the voice that comes out of my throat. I always have this sense of recapturing some amazing time that I had long ago, only I’ve never had amazing times like the ones I feel inside my head. At least not in the last 27 years I haven’t. In my head, I live inside stories that haven’t yet been written, movies that haven’t yet been made. Or were made very, very long ago. But I don’t have anyone to share it with or to help me pull the good times out.

Days like today are timeless and fleeting all at once. Like a portal to infinity that will ironically only exist for a passing few hours. I am forced to wonder if anyone else ever feels this kind of "happiness" the way I do, or the same sadness I feel when I am trapped without this feeling, alone in crawling seconds, endless boredom and banality. I think I’ll take a shower and dream some more.

(Originally posted on April 5th, 2008)

We all go a little crazy sometimes.

Sometimes everything happens at once, and a single day can go from "good enough" to "maniacal," in the blink of an eye.

The week begins by me finding out that I’m not seeing a band I was really looking forward to seeing in two days from now, because they canceled their tour. On April fool’s day. Which filled me with doubt and strangeness.

Mild shock.

Then, in the same instant, I got an email saying I had won tickets to a screening of The Ruins in Chicago. Also on April Fool’s day. Which, instead of making me feel grand, made me feel even slightly more doubtful and confused.

More concrete shock at this point... the type that takes a day or two to settle in.

I had very few clients this week, which usually makes me feel pleasantly relaxed, but this time made me feel poor and antsy. Then this morning I had to go and pay my 2007 taxes, which makes me VERY poor (pathologically poor, one might say) and even more antsy.

All this prefaced tonight’s internal insanity.

So, I go to this movie tonight, after an incredibly stressful drive into Chicago, through what I can only describe as the Morlock Underground of "Lower Whacker" that confuses our navigational system nearly to the point of smoke. Only James T. Kirk logic could have done a better job. Finally I find parking in a lot that says that the fee will only be $13 with a ticket stub. I try to be hopeful.

We get to this movie only to slowly glean that it’s just a free screening of the movie, and I could have come at any time without having "won" any "free tickets" in the first place. This makes me feel sort of weird, and makes me wonder if I really cared enough about the movie to see it a day early in Chicago in the first place.

Then the movie happens. And it’s at least good. And the person sitting next to me is delightfully freaked out by everything, which entertained me to no end.

But then comes the trip home. My stockings are falling down and they’ve got weird holes in them that I didn’t notice before, and it’s sort of raining by the time we get back to the car, so I’m slightly on edge. It takes forever to get out of the parkinglot and by the time we finally get to the booth, we are denied our $13 discount fee because we were apparently there for too long. So now we have to pay $26, which niether of us have, so it goes onto my credit card.

Then, trying to drive out, we end up in Morlock land again, and I’m about to have to throw the Garmin out the window because it keeps screaming at me that I’m going to the wrong way and demanding that I make turns into walls. Plus, I can’t tell where the stop lights are, and I feel like I’m about to run into either a barrier or a truck at any moment. Every turn that I do make has to be preceded by another car making the same turn because I literally can’t see where the road is, and I don’t want to end up turning down an oncoming lane of traffic.

Finally we make it back above ground, and right about the time we get onto the highway again, my "check engine" light goes on. My car is not old. It’s a 2003 Toyota. And I just had it in the shop LAST FRIDAY for scheduled maintenance. Nothing more than a simple tune up, in order to keep it running well. Of course that cost several hundred dollars, but I figure it’s worth it in order to keep my car alive as long as possible.

It’s never had a check engine light before. And that light was suddently the brightest, most blinding thing I’d ever seen. And I can hear a tiny snapping sound that was my sanity.

Suddenly I can hear every noise in my car. I feel every bump on the road. The wheel jerks in my hands. I smell... gas?... oil...?

... I go a bit insane.

I get trapped between a truck and an SUV that are both slightly slack about where their lanes end and mine begin, and I scream "Why is everyone bearing down on me?!"

Much of the rest of the trip home, and my subsequent arrival and changing into pajamas is a blur.

So yes, we finally got home a couple hours ago, and I feel so damnably wound up I don’t know if I’ll ever sleep tonight. I think this is why people start drinking. I’m hoping to just pass out from either anger or sadness or... whatever crazy feelings are running through me at the moment. Nights like these always remind me of all the bad things in my life, all the bad things stalking my future, all the scars from my past.

Hell, maybe someone will talk me down, unwittingly, and I’ll just end up having a normal night after all. I’m carrying on just enough interesting internet conversations at the moment to distract myself, so we’ll see.

I swear... some days I just lose my mind.

(Originally posted on April 4th, 2008)

Turner Classic Movies + Friday nights = Excellent

Ok. TCM’s special Underground series on Friday nights is officially awesome.

Movie: The Brotherhood of Satan

Best scene ever: Living room, late at night, child sleeping outside the doorway. Husband, sitting on the couch, reads out loud from the bible while his wife, sitting in a nearby sofa chair, weeps hysterically. Suddenly, woman’s face freezes in horror as she seems something off camera and she spasms and dies with a look of utter madness frozen on her visage. Then you see a doll, standing in the middle of the floor. The man looks up, convulses, and blood starts pouring from his mouth. He crumples, doubled over, instantly dead.

Doll sheds single tear.

Child walks, trance-like out of the house.

Already this is the my movie of the week. Thank you, 1971, and thank you Turner Classic Movies. I’m so glad it’s 3:30 in the morning and I don’t have to work tomorrow.

(Originally posted on March 29th, 2008)

I'm really asking for it tonight.

Hooo boy, the dreams I will have tonight...

It’s 3:30am right now, and I just watched a double feature of Black Sheep (a New Zealand film about genetically altered, zombie-esque sheep) followed by Forbidden Zone (Richard Elfman’s first film, and Danny Elfman’s first "soundtrack," a sci-fi fantasy comedy on acid, completely black and white, and complete with stop motion, animation, and musical numbers from the 30’s).

The Forbidden Zone, by the way, I should point out, should probably never be viewed before midnight. However, after 2:00am... it’s maybe not the best idea. Unless it really, really is. Which it was tonight.

Oh, lordy, I haven’t felt this delirious since I stayed up by myself all night to watch Blue Velvet when I was 16! Thank god tomorrow is Sunday. I’m filled with the need to dance. Or drink. Or both. But I’ll probably just go to bed and have really... really... really wrong dreams.

(Originally posted on March 23rd, 2008)

I can hear you breathing out there.

I’m going to pretend this post has a point for a second and mention something meaningful before I get into the meat of it all.

I write all my dreams down. It’s fun, and it makes me remember more dreams later. And, interestingly enough, when I get lazy or don’t have the time to write anything down, I actually start remembering fewer and fewer dreams. That kind of sucks, and in order to start remembering my dreams again, I have to start writing down random and uninteresting snippets of things until the full length features come back to me. I am amazed to find that I have filled up a whole journal and a half of my dreams. This fills me with a secret pride and also fills me with a secret loneliness as I wish more people would come over and want to read my dreams. :) My dreams are incredibly detailed and very odd! Someone should care about them other than me (and Isaac, who counts only as an extension of me because I’ve known him for too long).

So, who else here has noteworthy dreams? Who writes anything down?

... which leads me to the real reason why I’m writing this - I know that there is a small select few people out there that are reading these begrudging blogs of mine. I see your numbers trickle in after I write. I usually get between three and ten eventual hits. I can guess maybe two or three of you.

But I don’t want to guess. I’m impatient, dammit! Who’s reading up on me, eh? I do so much internet stalking, I want to know who’s stalking me back.

Trust me. It would make my day. So fucking sound off, you virtual peeps!


(And by the way, if you get that Wild Zero reference, you’re getting a Christmas card.)

(Originally posted on March 20th, 2008)

Depression is a hell of a drug...

I’m getting old.

Boys within my dating age group are single for bad reasons - the most common, and most depressing, is the confirmed bachelor reason. The "I have given up on having a girlfriend because it’s not worth it" reason.

There’s very little hope of swaying these men once they’ve decided this about themselves. I suppose romance tells us that these men will eventually "find someone" that makes their hearts flip over and then they’ll know that the rest of their life will be with this perfect girl. Romance is wrong. And those perfect girls usually just sort of fade away.

I’d also like the point out that many of these bachelors are the exact people that SHOULD be having families, whereas most people that end up having kids should have been sterilized at birth.

But the worst part of it all is when you know a very small handful of these confirmed bachelors that are pretty much everything you want in a man. It sucks to have everything in common with someone you will never have a chance with. It sucks even more to be in a relationship with someone that you have everything in common with, and start suspecting a little too late that you have no chance with them.

I’m getting old and I’ve suddenly become this adult with a career and no other life. That’s pretty much exactly what I DIDN’T want my life to become. It’s not fair. It’s really not. This is not what I wished for when I wished on stars as a kid. This is more like a monkey’s paw wish.

I hate having crushes. Really, can’t I be past the old pain of unreturned fancy? Can’t I have a little reciprocal affection at this point in my life? I feel like I’ve slipped back to fourteen again, only this time there’s not anything to look forward to "once I’m older."

I search for things I don’t like in people that I fancy these days, just so I won’t have to feel that badness anymore. I usually fail, and in the process of searching, I find yet more things that I like. It makes me feel pretty blue; like the more perfect I find someone to be, the bigger the loss that I know I can’t have them.

But does it feel worse to know that you can never have someone you know is just right, or does it feel worse to have someone who you know is just right and then realize that you can’t have them *anymore*? Lord... I have no idea what to do with myself these days.

(Originally posted on March 18th, 2008)