Welcome To My Bed

This day is shark bait.

Lots to buzz about. A one Jack McCarthy is storming the Northeast, and I had the exquisite pleasure of seeing him perform on two consecutive evenings, once in my own Hampshire backyard (for an hour! for free!!!) and then for the second time on my weekly excursion to Cambridge. I also gave Sam a pretty decent haircut. On the way back from Boston, I sang at the top of my lungs almost the entire way, and it was amazing. I even made the weird Alanis noises that Alanis makes in her songs. My throat felt very 90s afterwards. Katie and I laughed at my need to make such ludicrous noises, but we also decided that one of the main factors predisposing us to feminism was our childhood love/unhealthy obsession with Alanis. Yay Canada!

In "real life", one of my poetry professors told me that I am too "emotionally hard" on myself after reading selections from the manuscript of my 365 project. This impromptu meeting about the manuscript cut into the first twenty minutes of a class where I was meant to be discussing the poetry of Emily Brontë, but beyond that, it probably made me be even more hard on myself for being hard on myself in the first place.

And I got semi-lost driving to North Station, which is stupid, because North Station has signs for it everywhere. Google Maps, you are thoroughly inadequate when it comes to navigating Boston. I propose that someone create some sort of exhaustive GPS designed only for navigating Boston, one that actually recognizes what road you are on, and tells you to turn down streets that aren't one ways headed in the opposite direction. Yeah! Hop to it, Somebody!

I am using exclamation points a lot more frequently than I normally would. This can probably be attributed to the fact that I am over-tired in a way that is generally unacceptable for the level at which I must function on a given Thursday. I just want to curl up in bed with my shark and take a long long nap while someone else does my laundry, fixes me a hot dinner that isn't leftover pizza rewarmed in the toaster oven, and then maybe crawls in bed next to me. We all know how likely that is to happen.

Workshop in my an hour, with two of my poems on the chopping block. I will reiterate here for effect, I just want to crawl into bed with Grössby.

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Girl-crush of the week (double feature!).

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I love these two so much I've been trolling the internet for roller skates and repeatedly telling Cassandra that I am going to run away to join a derby. We saw Whip It last night and now I'm a little obsessed. Perhaps because slam doesn't exactly satisfy my thick competitive streak.

I've been stomping around all day in my Docs wishing that my wardrobe was even close to being as cool as Bliss's in the movie. I pine for the day when Hollywood sweeps in to make my life into a movie and hands me a big pile of clothes that make me look like an even radder version of myself. (Not that I don't already think I'm pretty rad, but sometimes having more to play with means extra-fabulousness.) Speaking of which, I went to Plato's Closet today to sell a bunch of useless things that were just taking up prime closet real estate and ended up coming home with two new-to-me dresses. One of them is yellow, which seems to be the color of the moment for me, and the other is this amazing denim shirtdress with little gold nautical buttons.

Another thing I've been yelling at Cass about lately (besides my jonesing for the second installment of my rib tattoo, of which I may or may not post a sketch sooner rather than later) is that my closet is finally arriving at a place where I am excited to get dressed every morning. Now I just have to grow my hair to an acceptable length, organize my shoe closet (which is really just my suitcase shoved under the bed), and perhaps do my homework. Although, who really does their homework in the first place?

FX make-up, layer by layer.

If you took a gander at the video blog in the last post, you know that Cassandra and I spent the better part of last night looking at least slightly terrifying. Or awesome. Or terrifyingly awesome. At any rate, as promised, I've got pictures of the making-up as it happens. And whenever Maggie uploads them, I'll be sure to share our more professional shots (which were replete with in-character groaning and limping) which were an absolute blast to take. I need to remember to follow whims more frequently. Enjoy!



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Maggie starts in with the nose putty

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the finished facial wound, replete with exposed cheekbone

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"it looks like somebody beat the shit out of you" was the night's refrain

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halfway to undead

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fully undead

Girl-crush of forever and always (and an explanation of sorts).

First off, proof that I am alive (and in dire need of a haircut...):



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And now that that's out of the way, the main event:



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I blame Sean completely and totally for this. When Cass and I were driving him home the other day, he made sure that we listened to at least half of I Am...Sasha Fierce, singing along emphatically the entire time. I have just recently begun admitting (mostly on this blog) my undying love for and devotion to female pop vocalists. I cannot stop listening to her - her entire discography (Destiny's Child included) has been on nearly constant rotation since the aforementioned car ride. What can I say? She's a diva. It seems an obvious obsession.

Aside from doing dizzying amounts of work and managing to come down with my first cold of the year at the most inopportune time (my birthday week, though thankfully the big day was spared), I've been spending far too much time holed up in my room watching ANTM with Cass and mentally talking myself through slam strategy (which for me typically means I'm showing off my legs and hoping I don't drop a line mid-poem). The open slam season has graced me with two home venue wins, and hopefully I'll work up the nerve to slam at Cantab this Wednesday.

Until then, I will remain in 23 A, wallowing in illness, attempting to organize all the things I still haven't unpacked fully. Watching music videos for songs that refuse to take themselves seriously. Like this one.





As a postscript, I guess it's fairly obvious that I've become obsessed with any and all reasons for dancing. Not that I wasn't always a closet party girl, but it just doesn't seem to jive properly with the whole librarian thing that I usually have going on. We are all too many things.

And as a post-postscript, happy birthday DC!

Our first trip to "The House".

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One of our roommates (Aly) at the Lady Poet house has a long and exciting history with a certain house in Amherst. There are usually theme parties, and though this weekend wasn't one of those times, there was still a more general kind of party going on, so we made the trek out anyway. Aside from having not been to a real party in months, the whole thing was very exciting and allowed me to cross a few things off my "teenage debauchery that must be accomplished before Tuesday" list. Because Tuesday is my 20th birthday! Which means tomorrow I'll have to start acting older and wiser. Yuck. All I want to do is dance. And write poetry. But anyway, here are a few cell phone memories from the evening.

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Cass and Aly pose, then forget that they are being photographed.

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Bonsai!

Keeping warm.

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The South Hadley Salvation Army is rarely good to me, but today was definitely an exception. I am so ready for winters in Western Mass.

This week's activities have included scheming with my advisor, nearly winning a slam, starting my first poetry class, and settling into the apartment. Also, Peter and I baked a raspberry pie. I had a slice for breakfast this morning with a big cup of tea. It was an almost-perfect way to start the day.

Barnes & Noble camp out.

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Yesterday was my day off, so I made the hike up to Allston for some quality poet time with chapbooks in hand and quarters for the parking meters. Georgie and I visited Cass at work and then squatted in the second story poetry section for awhile while I read aloud to him from my new friend Lara Bozabalian's book Free that I'd picked up at her Got Poetry Live feature in Providence the night before. He was as blown away as I was when I saw her perform (and luckily she turned up at the Cantab later on for a spotlight feature).

We found a particularly comfy nook across from the cookbooks and read for awhile, talking on and off about life and love, exchanging stories that mostly circled around Slam Collective and its many dramas. As much as we are crazy (comes with the territory of "poet" I suppose), I can't wait to be back in that space of love and support again. That's the thing I am looking forward to most about September - that and facilitating a closer and more exciting writing community on campus, but that's going to take some doing. For now, I have the surrogate Cantab family and my visits to Chester Street to keep me feeling part of things.

In thinking back on the summer and how my writing has begun to speak for me a bit, I'm getting more and more excited. When Ryk booked me for my GPL feature, I thought he was just being nice, but having seen the kinds of people he books roll through Providence, people like Lara and Ryler and Simone Beaubien (the awe-inspiring slam master at the Cantab reading), people I really respect, I feel completely humbled and honored at once. But it isn't just that. I've had Lara and Ryler and Simone and lots of other people approach me after open mics and such with great things to say about their response to my work. Just last night, Tom Daley, a Cantab staple who runs writing workshops in Cambridge, came up to me to ask for a copy of the poem I performed. I would have been floored if it had ended there, but to his request he added that it was the best piece he'd heard at the Cantab in months. I couldn't quit smiling after that.

All these things happening in my writing career have me more and more confident in my decision to submit to Write Bloody this January. It's going to take a lot of work and preparation and I'm trying to be very realistic about my chances of anything serious coming from it, but I know it can't hurt to try.

Girl-crush of the week.

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I want to preface this with a confession: I have been thinking about Halloween costumes. I know the holiday is months away, but I will not get caught in the vortex of indecision that lead to me dressing up like Velma from Scooby Doo last year out of sheer desperation with no Mystery Machine to speak of and definitely no monster to chase. And one of the first costumes that came to mind was Amy Blue from The Doom Generation. While this is most likely directly connected to the fact that I just order a pair of Doc Martens, I have other reasons. One of them being that Rose McGowan is a stone cold fox, and if I emulate her, perhaps some of that stone cold foxiness will be channeled through me? I can dream, can't I? Also, my recent red lipstick obsession doesn't hurt...

Girl-crush, times two; PVD-area whiskey girls and dancing queens.

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Continuing my obsession as of late with lady-rockers, pop divas, and all the wonderful gems in between, today I am spending my time with Brody Dalle and Alison Mosshart, or the respective bad-ass front-ladies ofSpinnerette and The Dead Weather. I figure, if I am going to have dance parties while I do laundry and clean the stove, I might as well make it count.

Speaking of dance parties, as part of a many-faceted night out with Lily yesterday (that included a show in a UU church complete with Gansetts, falafel, seeing a living SHARK in a bar, etc.), we hit up Tazza, got some Maker's on the rocks and proceeded to dance for about three hours straight. I have not had a night of dancing like that...probably ever. Nicky and DC were just sitting in the corner laughing at us because of how much fun we were having. Boys who are too cool to dance make me giggle - Lily and I kept trying to get them to come join us, and DC did for a bit, but he did not seem to have the stamina to take it as seriously as we were taking it. When I got home I felt so good it was a chore to try to get to sleep. People talk about loving the single life, but at this point I'm not even thinking about whether I am single or not. And if I keep having such good times where the silly will-he-or-won't-he-look-my-way-tonight isn't anywhere near a factor, I will continue to be a more than happy camper. I am happily in love with the slow builds in dance songs when they bring the beat back layer by layer until you get almost dizzy with it, and that is enough for me.

Tonight Chris's band Paper Eagles is playing at Tazza (Lily and I were remarking that we feel like we live there lately) and we're going to have the second installment of our dance party + destruction. There have been rumblings about a ladies-only brunch tomorrow morning/afternoon, so clearly things are only going to continue on in this highly enjoyable vein for as long as we will them to do so.

Girls, girls, girls.

So I'm doing this thing lately where I only listen to music sung by women that makes me feel somehow vindicated in my general disdain for any serious thoughts about the male half of mankind at the moment. Lots of Taylor Swift (who I didn't expect to like, but she gave me goosebumps on the bus today), always Lady Gaga, Kaki King (as has been mentioned at least once here), and now Paramore. I will say that I doubted this band, but my crush on Hayley Williams has proven too persuasive to continue to ignore her killer voice and their catchy-as-heck hooks. Just look at her, how could you not be in love?

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Happy and not so happy places.

So tomorrow night is the night I have been waiting for since the week I arrived in this Noah's Ark of a city. Yes, ladies and gentleman, tomorrow night is my first real feature in the world beyond Hampshire. I am absolutely having a heart attack about it, but in a good way (if that's even possible). Being that work was canceled (again) because of the rain (it never stops), I spent a good portion of today memorizing and/or performing for Toby and Lucy (otherwise known as my sister's cats). Hopefully it shows. I want to do excessively well tomorrow night so that everyone under the sun buys product and puts lots of money in the hat so that I have at least some cash to tool around with when I'm home in the next few days. If you're in the area, come over to Blue State for organic, fair trade beverages and a decent-sized helping of poetry.

In further reference to the return to Jersey, this impending journey marks a turning point in the summer. Wendeline (my 1992 Cutlass Ciera S, who just recently reached the 60,000 mile mark) and I have to go our separate ways until the end of August, when we will triumphantly return to Hampshire together. Until then, she's got some work left to do for my family. I'm pretty bummed out about this, but in the process of dropping her off, I'll be stopping off at my little sister's high school graduation, possibly having a meal with my family (who knows how long it's been since that happened) and seeing SLZ. I'm trying to accentuate the positives of this visit, because going back to Jersey always destabilizes any kind of mental clarity I acquire, either at school or elsewhere, and based on how wonderful Providence has been for the restructuring of my world-view, I am worried that I'll get back to the apartment Thursday/Friday and be completely destroyed. Hopefully that's not the case, but I'm trying to be at least partially prepared for the worst. We'll see if it works out.

These are the two things I see when I close my eyes to go to my happy place currently:

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As long as there are tapirs making funny faces and Kaki King in the world, I have reason to smile at least halfway.

Rebel scum.

A real post tomorrow when I'm having coherent thoughts again, but for now, something from the Digg Twitter feed:

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Bad. Ass.

Okay, now I'm going to get back to No Reservations, but before I do, I'd like to make sure you all take a moment out of your day to vote for DC as best Providence singer/songwriter in the Phoenix poll.