June 1, 2015
have i been going.
the details of which
are relegated to my actual journal.
but shit, man, let me tell you;
this week, i’ve been blabbing
to anyone who’d listen.
asking, “how are you?”
is going to get a real response.
now is not the time to expect pleasantries from me.
i’ve been trying to pull back
from the specifics of what’s been bothering me
to think about what it says about who i am.
(i try to be reflective whenever possible)
and these are the things i know to be true:
i have worked really hard over the past four years to imbricate myself within a network of friends who love and respect me. i would argue that i rarely call upon that network in times of need, emotional especially, but i’ve had to the past couple of weeks and all i can say is my investment has paid off. my work (such as it is) and friendships are on. fucking. point. this year and i’m being consciously grateful for that.
i have also come to realize that in focusing on strengthening certain parts of my personality, work ethic, and friendships, i have created a false sense of security, a kind of bubble if you’ll pardon the lame metaphor. i operate under a delusion that i am in far greater control of my life, or perhaps more accurately myself, than i actually am because i’ve limited its general scope. this means that, when faced with new things, especially things that are unexpectedly difficult and generally foreign to how i live ma vie quotidienne, i am basically a child. the adult, rational part of my brain, overdeveloped through years of academic discipline, is simply inadequate for certain challenges. i’m not sure what to do about that quite yet, but i imagine recognizing a weakness in my character (by which i mean things with which i am unpracticed) is a good first step.
all of this is beginning to sound like an epic subtweet of sorts, a kind of return to the “i know who my real friends are” or “you know what you did” moments of livejournal circa 2004. this is not my goal. my goal is to point out two things:
1. i have come to realize that asking for help is a good thing because i have people in my life who’ll do it without question. i am going to allow myself to be “weak” now and then. (though i’m to make a habit of it)
2. i love the upjohn company for their creation of xanax because god knows i’d never make it through this life without the help of a little western medicine now and then.
setting all this cryptic emotional bullshit aside, (which is suddenly feeling so self indulgent that i should have just written it in my actual journal after all) how about ending on a high note, eh?
i think it’s been roughly 1.5 years
since i’ve knit
a single stitch.
simply an estimate
as i’m far to lazy to confirm)
i’m hoping i can re-access
that meditative quality that
drew me to knitting to begin with
because the alternative is bourbon
and mixing pills and booze, well,
that’s a road one should avoid.
*pray for my gauge
January 10, 2015
i am pretty much a misanthrope.
and unabashedly so.
for the most part
i distrust people
and think the world,
on the whole,
my general response to the world
has been to create a bubble around myself,
one of as much beauty and acceptance as i can find.
i’m lucky in that i’ve a lot of privilege
relative to the rest of the world;
i’m (excessively) educated.
all things that help to counteract
the palpable oppressive force of the straight world.
(it wasn’t easy growing up queer when i did. at all.)
and so today i find myself nearly moved to tears
(the strange man plastering the walls in my bathroom
is the only thing really keeping me in check)
because i’ve been bombarded from all sides
by random acts of kindness,
kindnesses of which i’m rarely in need
and i would never have expected to receive if i were.
it began at the red hook in ferndale,
a coffee shop i frequent semi-regularly.
for whatever reason, i only had my debit card on me, and
for whatever reason,
it was declined.
which is odd,
as i just got paid yesterday.
the worker bee shrugged it off,
telling me not to worry about it,
and waited on the next customer.
a little chagrined
but figured i’d pay for it the next time i was in,
chalking it up to one of the small perks of being a regular.
but then i realized that i’d just ‘bought’ a bagel
at the new york bagel baking company
not ten minutes prior.
i recalled the lady saying she needed to run my card again.
on the second swipe told me i was “all set”
and i headed off to the red hook.
i can only surmise
that she spared me the embarrassment
of telling me my card was declined
and just gave me my bagel.
my middle class guilt made me queasy
and i vowed to tip big the next time i bought a bagel.
then the final straw.
as i headed home i realized i was low on gas.
i wasn’t sure i’d make it home.
i found a single dollar in that compartment
between the driver and passenger seats
(what the fuck is that called, anyway?!)
enough for about a half a gallon.
about two miles from home,
with my fuel meter telling me i had 0 miles left,
i pulled over to a gas station,
handed the attendant
my sad little dollar,
and pumped the .56 gallons of gas into my tank,
plenty to get me home to my wallet and another gas station.
as i hung up the pump,
the attendant’s voice came over the speaker
telling me, and anyone else in hearing for that matter,
that the man in line behind me said that
he’d put $20 on my pump if i wanted.
a wave of unfamiliar emotion came over me,
some combination of
what i can only describe as
a combination of fear, shame, and humility.
shouting, “no, no, that’s ok!”
with no clue how the attendant could hear me,
quickly hopped in my car
and spend away home.
i’m not sure what to say about all this.
i just knew i needed to write it all down as soon as possible.
i knew i needed to document what happened to me because, somehow,
i don’t know what it means,
i don’t know what my reaction says about me.
i think maybe it’s actually very sad
that such small kindnesses
could disconcert me so.
that people being kind
is so outside my personal experience
that the experience of kindness overwhelms me.
perhaps that proves i am right,
and the world is just as shitty as i think it is.
but at least for today,
that it was less so.
December 3, 2014
November 17, 2014
from the initial shock
of the news of leslie feinberg’s
if i’m honest,
stone butch blues
put me on the path
to my current work
as a literary scholar.
how do you repay someone
for changing the course of your life?
for showing you what matters
and who matters to you?
i’ll never come close
to living a life
as leslie feinberg’s
but, as long as i live,
hir work will not be forgotten.
“Feinberg is survived by Pratt and an extended family of choice, as well as many friends, activists, and comrades around the world in struggle against oppression and for liberation.”
June 4, 2014
the other day,
i got a package.
and you know how much
i love an unexpected package.
there is absolutely nothing better than an unforeseen gift;
may it be a sign of many many things to come!
so thanks, anna.
i miss you, bitch!
tomorrow, how about a fo, eh?
it’s been a while, after all.
February 21, 2014
just popping in to plug my shit again.
i’ll keep it brief:
Friday, February 21—Live Readings by the Broad MSU Writing Residents
6–7 PM | Free and open to the public
The Broad MSU, in partnership with the MSU Department of English and the MSU Department of Writing, Rhetoric, and American Cultures, is pleased to announce the Broad MSU Writing Residency! This residency features six graduate students who will create monthly public readings that respond to an art work on view at the Broad MSU, while utilizing core themes from the upcoming exhibition, Postscript: Writing After Conceptual Art. The live readings will begin at 6 PM, and will take place in the galleries alongside a corresponding work of art. (Meet at the Information Desk at 6 PM before moving into galleries.)
i’m one of the residents.
if you like,
and you could see me make a fool of myself.
i’ve been in a nostalgic,
sentimental, sappy kind of mood,
here’s a poem i came across, a sonnet
that has been nagging me for few days now.
poetry is good for you. so read it.
by marilyn hacker
You did say, need me less and I’ll want you more.
I’m still shellshocked at needing anyone,
used to being used to it on my own.
It won’t be me out on the tiles till four-
thirty, while you’re in bed, willing the door
open with your need. You wanted her then,
more. Because you need to, I woke alone
in what’s not yet our room, strewn, though, with your
guitar, shoes, notebook, socks, trousers enjambed
with mine. Half the world was sleeping it off
in every other bed under my roof.
I wish I had a roof over my bed
to pull down on my head when I feel damned
by wanting you so much it looks like need.
August 9, 2013
**the giveaway has now been closed!**
you thought i’d forgotten, hadn’t you?
you thought i’d forgotten it’s my blogiversary.
it has been a week, bitches.
as my new favorite blogger would say,
gurl, i’ve been going through it!
so i don’t think i have a thoughtfully written post in me tonight.
if you feel like getting sentimental, head on over to last year’s post.
but i should do something to commemorate the occasion, right?
make shit just a little festive around here?
what about a giveaway?
for old times’ sake?
the bitches get stitches fourth blogiversary giveaway!
1. spread the word – you can do that anyway you see fit; reblog, tweet, e-mail, facebook, ravelry, phone call, text, whatever. there’s even a ‘share’ button at the bottom of the post. just let some other knitter know about the giveaway. it’s completely on the honor system. i trust ya.
2. leave a comment – it’s the easiest way to assign everyone a random number for the all-knowing random number generator to pick a winner. make sure to comment on this post. you’d think i wouldn’t need to specify that but >shakes head from experience< and for the sake of fairness and my personal sanity, please leave only one comment.
3. this one’s most important – you only have the 24 hours from the time i posted to ‘spread the word’ and ‘leave a comment’. the winner will be announced tomorrow, august 10th.
while i realize my mere presence via the words on your screen
is a gift unto itself, the only gift you really need,
a $100 gift certificate to blue moon fiber arts
would be a bit more traditional.
(i’m a sucker for tradition)
July 27, 2013
mo decided to help himself to a toy last nightoddest thing to wake up to.
July 18, 2013
i began this post
in the middle of the night
in a guest bedroom in scappoose, oregon
with the intention of recounting my day’s activities
and proceeding thusly for the rest of my mini-vacay/retreat from life.
it soon became obvious
that scappoose lacked the bandwidth necessary
to blog on a daily basis, at least if i wanted to show you my pictures.
so now i am home
literally weeks after my return.
and must resort to the recap format for today’s blog
this might take a while.
coffee at ristretto roasters
which was the only coffee i had in portland that lived up to the hype
(this mocha was not fucking around)
there were a couple trips to grand central bakery
where i was more impressed by their breakfast sandwich and shrimp po boy (scroll down) than their sweet stuff.
in portland proper,
there was the ubiquitous
homeless/punk/beggar with cute animal entourage.
this group was outside powell’s where i had a pretty amazing haul
the next day,
tina and i went to black sheep gathering
where we saw judith mackenzie judge the fleeces,
a thoroughly delightful and educational experience.
(note: apparently, shetlands are in this year)
(the aforementioned shrimp sandwich)
we ran into beth hansen of hansen crafts
she is . . . a character. if you meet her,
and it feels like she’s making fun of you,
that’s because she is.
it’s totally normal.
i have strong feelings about the miniSpinner,
but this is all i’m going to say about it: i’m a traditionalist.
if you’re not, and aren’t bothered by the electric component
you should definitely buy it;
it’s a pretty fucking awesome product.
i won’t be buying one because
i am a fuddy duddy.
i stopped by black trillium fibre studio‘s booth,
one of the only booths i thought worthy of documenting, really.
the problem with all of these shows,
especially the smaller ones,
is that these people aren’t business people.
sure, i bet 90% of them make an amazing product,
but that doesn’t mean they know shit about how to sell it.
you’ve got to make a booth that makes people want to come in,
or you might as well not even bother to show up.
melanie knows how to work with what she has;
simple set up, a few beautiful samples, wide open
so people can get in and out easily.
similarly, the men at the clemes & clemes booth knew what was up!
these dudes are professional, know their product, work well together,
have their demonstration down, and there’s something to be said for a uniform. this dude had me wanting a fucking drum carder
something for which i have no use or space in my life.
that, my dears, is a salesman!
(sorry for the shitty photo)
then i met some west coast knitters
though i can only remember angela davis (the knitting one)
with her amazing mustard eye shadow (right) and parna
(with the broken hand), both of whom i hope to see again.
(sorry angela, not the best photo, i know, but better than the other one)
the next day,
tina took the misses newton, heidi dog, and me to the beach
before which we hit up this joint,
pacific way bakery & caféwhich, was fucking amazing…last year.
but made us a but queasy this time around.
and our waitress?
then we returned for more chicken time, but with a twist.
i don’t know what it is, but i fucking love deer.
maybe it’s from watching bambi as a kid, i don’t know.
but i can not get enough deer.
and i got way close to this guy.
i was then treated to a ________ about which i cannot tell you.
what i can tell you is that it was a moment when i felt
humble, special, and kinda fancy.
because it was fancy.
and more than a little pantsy.
though likely wasted on my middle class ______.
the whole tripped was capped off
by an amazing meal at cocotte bar & bistro
a meal totally worth live tweeting. which i did.
(click pics to read descriptions)
then i immediately hopped on a plane and headed home.
this trip was my vacation,
a flight, really, from my incredibly stressful summer.
there were whole swathes of time when i was not seized
by crippling work-related anxiety.
that level of ease is only surpassed
when i escape to my parent’s house,
or as i still think of it,
tina’s guest room
is a close second.
she’s the kindest host.
i even get my own bathroom.
*there was an undocumented fabulous indian dinner with tina, megan, and deb, friends from three very different epochs of my life, followed by a night out with megan at a former bowling alley dive where, once the lyons’ club bingo night rapped up, we watched the mentally challenged and tone deaf sing karaoke.there’s no picture in the world that can capture that.
July 1, 2013
my first ever stand-alone class went so well. so so well.
better than i have even hoped it could!
i was a good teacher.
they were good students.
doing good work on day one is really rare.
and while i was literally beset with the feeling
that i was going to vomit and take a huge dump in my pants,
i cannot emphasize enough what a boon that class was.