February 28, 2012

Do you know how long it’s been since I’ve practiced my Oscar speech? A long ass time. Like most, my practice mainly took place in a bathroom. There was once a time where I, acting as my famous alter ego, Ms. Natali Beunes, thought it’d be a good idea to walk the red carpet in a terry cloth gown and subsequently imagined various paparazzi commenting on how flawless I looked.

“Ms. Beunes! Over here! Who are you wearing?”

“Oh, this old thing?” I’d say, “It’s from Bed, Bath, and Beyond.”

I’d imagined accepting for various projects, tailored my speech for each paltry idea that had set up camp in my brain at that time. Camp Counselors doing it, crazy sisters murdering each other, angsty retellings of plots already hashed out to the death on E.R… I was going to be fucking rolling in it. I wanted to be so famous that I couldn’t have a decent meal without swarms of adoring fans coming up to me and begging for a John Hancock.

I had everything figured out. I was going to be happily married to a tall, dark, and handsomely goateed fellow named Steve. We’d have a set of twin girls who were well adjusted artistic angels that played piano like Martha Argerich and danced like Marianela Nunez. I would walk every red carpet in a fashionable frock and give an eloquent speech that brought the room to it’s feet with an explosion of applause because…. THEY LIKE ME, THEY REALLY LIKE ME!

The more I write, and the more I get past the masturbatory honeymoon period of the creative process, the more I accept that you really have to have an enormous amount of self hatred to put words on paper.


Because writing is hard. Writing involves recognizing all of your bad decisions (which most of the time you feel are your best decisions) and figuring out how to kill them dead. Writing involves working through the pain of being stabbed in the heart long enough to let your characters breathe a little, and become aware that you’re the one holding the knife in the first place. Writing is realizing people don’t always say exactly what they mean, and exactly how they feel, or exactly what YOU mean, and exactly how YOU feel.

Actually, the more I think about it, writing kind of sucks.

In my past lives, I’ve touted that I would one day be rich and famous. People have asked to be thanked in my speech, told me they thought I was talented, and that they saw me on the stage. (Hopefully in something more regal than a rolled up bath towel). I don’t even know how to respond to that now. Before, I was like, “YOU KNOW IT!” and added everyone into my already hour long thank you note.

I can tell you this: even though it’s been years since I’ve pictured myself stumbling down the aisle in heels that were much too tall for my petite untrained frame, if I were more broke than I am now (HA!) I’d still have a little book with all my stupid words in it.

As much (and as often) as writing sucks harder than a million dollar hooker, I’d be destitute without it. Words live in my fingernails. To say otherwise would be ridiculous.

Sidenote: I wrote this at backspace today while I was sitting next to a dude who compared all of his writing to parts of a meal. He was like, “Sorry we can’t talk anymore, I have to go cook”. All he had to his name was a bicycle, a backpack, and a ten gallon bucket. He freestyle rapped for me before I left and he was pretty good. SHOUT OUT dude– if you’re reading this, you’re awesome. Don’t stop cookin’.


RE: Nina

February 23, 2012

Can I just tell you that every time I have a really depressing blog entry that I post, something good comes along that relates impeccably to my situation and alleviates a lot of my grumpiness?

I feel like crap 90 % of the time these days, but: I’ve got my head, got my hair, I’ve got my brains, got my ears, I’ve got my eyes, got my nose, got my smile.

All hail, Queen Nina, saver of lives.


February 22, 2012

Today is/was Nina Simone’s birthday.

Lately I’ve been thinking about making a list of the ten best songs ever written. So far, they’re all 60’s soul tunes. (Midnight Train to Georgia, Ain’t No Sunshine, It’s a Man’s World) songs that you can’t really dislike because they’re so powerful. Then I remember things like L’Adoration de la Terre and Prokofiev and the Gymnopedies and Dave Brubeck…
Nina slays me. She’s so good. I sat down on my bed, (my sister’s old bed) (I don’t really have a bed right now) all I could think of was singing “I Love You Porgy” and is that racist because I’m white, and then I found a video of Christina Aguilera singing it, and it was still bad– but not because she’s white, just because her voice isn’t suited for it I think. She sort of ruined modern music. Ladies now oversaturate their voices with runs and it gets old. Do I think it worked for Xtina? Sure. Do I think it’s a fad that needs to die? Yes.
I don’t know if I’ve ever told you about Miles Davis Sundays. I’ve been having them a lot lately. (No complaints.) It’s when the weather is really shitty, and you sit in a coffee shop trying to get dry and watch people walking by in the rain. Today, I sat by a guy in Powell’s who couldn’t figure out where the power outlets were for his laptop and proceeded to write a paper on Magritte’s “Leci n’est pas une pipe.” It was nice. I sat and made a list of things I wanted. (An apartment with shelving was sandwiched between living near my friends, and having a decent amount of self worth.) $2 was enough to get a little extra steamed milk, but not enough to keep my sleeves from sticking to my elbows. I sat anyway, caffeinating as content as I could force myself to be, and tried to remember my favorite line from Wild Geese.
You do not have to be good.

You do not have to walk on your knees
for a hundred miles through the desert, repenting.
You only have to let the soft animal of your body
love what it loves.

One time, I met a guy who said that he always had to listen to Sinnerman all the way through no matter what he was doing. He said it was the one song that he would literally stop his life for. He clapped in the middle, during the part where she does a piano riff sans singing. I like the part in the end before the drums end, and she says POWEEERRRR LORD about twenty times. Today is her birthday. 

In one of the scripts I wrote, there’s a part where two characters are in an apartment, in the midst of s tryst, and The Other Woman comes up on shuffle. 

/ the other woman / takes time to manicure her nails / the other woman / is perfect where her rival fails / 

They decide against the passionate make out sesh they were about to have, and decide it’s for the best if they go back to their respective romantic partners. 

You know what’s weird? Waking up in a bed that’s not your bed. Or waking up on a couch. Or waking up and not having any valid reason for getting out of the comfortable (albeit overdue for a wash) overnight nest you’ve created for yourself. If people didn’t feel safe, why would they sleep at all? Is it a suspension of disbelief that crazy shit will happen to you while you’re essentially unconscious for seven or so hours? Maybe that’s why people don’t like getting up. They’re so thankful that they’ve managed to wake up at all that their bed becomes a fortress of safety. Maybe some people only sleep because their body is too tired to function otherwise. 

I have two shirts that the sleeves don’t roll up well with. I wore them both today on accident. 
My dad’s house doesn’t have heat during the day. 
The shirts were warm. 
I wiped sweat off of my face after putting my scarf on. 
Drank yesterday’s coffee. 
Used the extra milk from my cheerios as cream. 
The stale hairbender got the cardboard kick it needed. 
Life was alright. 

It’s strange when you realize you don’t feel well. Not sick unwell, just off kilter. I miss being able to brush my worries under the rug. I miss being able to really make the little things equal a best day ever. Now things weigh on me like they didn’t used to, and I can’t decide if autonomy is worth it. I have brushed bad memories under the rug. 

I hate not being able to get over things. Yes I want you. Yes you’re gone. Yes you don’t want me. That should be ok, but it isn’t. 

I think about singing “Black is the Color of My True Love’s Hair” but even if that’s what brought me the most joy on this great planet, some one, somewhere, often in a different room, in the same house, as my overnight (albeit overdue for a wash) nest, will tell me it’s ridiculous. My pursuits are ridiculous. I do nothing. That’s ridiculous. 

Do I have no work ethic? 
Have I not bitten the bullet and gotten on board with real life? 
Am I appropriating the entirety of black culture because I like to sing along with Nina? 
Or because all the songs on my “Ten Best” list are performed by black people?
Is it bad that my dad’s girlfriend thinks I think she’s funny because though I was laughing when she
told jokes tonight, it was just because I’d remembered my brother texted me once after peeing on her car? 
Should I know what I’m supposed to do with myself by now? 
Have I been wasting a lot of time trying to figure this out in the first place? 
Am I going to end up being -that- person who can’t get my (supposedly) normal anxiety together and who ends up writing emails to people who have their own perfectly logical and way more important problems to deal with? 

Before I started speaking with G, you got all these emails. 
You got emails on the daily. 
About my dumb shit problems, 
and my parent’s being awful, 
and you never once told me to shutthefuckup. 

For that, I thank you. 

&Happy yester-birthday to Queen Nina…. 
We miss you. 


February 11, 2012

I just finished watching Goldie Hawn’s episode of Master’s Class. It got me thinking about halves. This is going to be an entry in half thoughts.

  • I have currently developed a fondness for Library Music of the 60’s-80’s. (Think DeVol, who scored the Brady Bunch.) I’ve always liked it, it usually has a really lush string section, and is purposefully atmospheric. The kind of dramatic swell you imagine in your brain before you make a big decision. Often, it’s cheesy as fuck. Hollyridge Strings and similar bands tried to bring rock and roll to the Geritol generation and failed pretty miserably at it. See what I mean?   Sometimes I’m like, whatthefuckamIdoing, and then I hear something gorgeous like Percy Faith’s cover of “Laura.” (Unfortunately all the audio I can find is horrendous. Apologies.)
  • The sad thing about making that last paragraph, is that the delightful dreaminess of Goldie’s pathos has drifted from my system. I figured it was too good to last anyway…

That’s what I’ve been thinking about.
Sometimes I switch gears and it sneaks up on me.

I love Goldie Hawn.

The first time I read her book I was a junior in high school and didn’t understand the value of narrative license. (As in, one can tell a complete story, but have it not be in a complete order. Or, perhaps the completeness of it, is in each vignette rather than taking place within a larger act structure as one would expect.) I didn’t  know who she was really, the book made no sense, I thought it was pretentious drivel and went back to my business. (Analyzing Mamet, and generally touting my douchery.) I forget when I found it again, but it changed my life. The concept of spirituality over religion was new to me, I enjoyed that she valued having an enriched spiritual experience in her day to day life while her feet were on the ground.

Sometimes I view myself like a person wrapped in a comfy, old sweater in desperate need for a wash playing life at a game of chess. Life makes a move, then I place my sickly, sticky sweatered, solipsistic finger on a piece wondering when my eyeballs got so hollowed out and I became a huge cuntbag. Perhaps this has only been a thing as of late. I can’t say. I can say that I’m a huge commitment-phobe which has served me well recently. I have yet to “commit” to being depressed. I am depressed some days, as is everyone; but I’m 22, I live with my mother, (who’s constantly the victim of everything) I sleep on an air mattress, (which was a step up from an uninsulated shack in the back yard) and I have zero perspective on life. A lot of my entries have been either dreary, or a futile attempt to hold onto fleeting joy. I. Don’t. Know.

I know that people keep telling me what I need and what I want. This makes me feel like vomiting. They tell me what I should do, place their hand on my shriveled finger and try to get me to make my next move before I’m ready. My mom thinks I’m an ungrateful brat. I don’t know what I am, because I am here. I am my aggregate experience. People can tell me whether or not I’m amply taking advantage of certain situations, but if I don’t feel it, I can’t force myself to.

My bony old cuntbag finger is on a piece. I haven’t decided where to place it yet.

Life may come at me and knock my queen over. Life may come at me, and I’ll be able to steal its bishops. (Those sneaky bastards!)

It’s weird to be 22 and feel like your next move will be surefire check mate. I don’t like this. I feel like I am too young for it.

Then again, keeping with halves, I could be through half my life already and not taken an interesting risk in the last 9 months. The riskiest thing I’ve done in the last week is try out two new coffee shops and watch a few movies I’ve never seen. My bus pass expired today, and it’s making me cranky that now I won’t even be able to go anywhere because I’m so fucking broke. 

“Well, get a job.” You say, “Anything.”

Sometimes I feel like I should get KISMET tattooed on my ass.

On a good day, library music makes me want to punch someone in the face.

On a bad day, someone will actually get punched in the face.

What do I want? (The question of the ages.)

Moving forward is hard.

Especially when you’re in an atmospheric environment that captures all of your senses. Something that’s enrapturingly dreamy and makes you forget that you’re probably going to wake up at 2pm tomorrow with a massive boxer-wedgie then try to muster the strength to make a cup of coffee and go do something. ANYTHING. GET OUT OF THE HOUSE. FRESH AIR.

Library Music was a bad idea tonight.

I regret it.

EDIT: I stopped wallowing long enough to read Laurel Masse’s blog, and it was just what I needed.Perhaps you’ll enjoy it as well?

prompt (3)

February 8, 2012

This is kind of a forced one. I’ll probably privatize it to spare you all the agony.
Poetry Exercise – Write a poem that uses the style of a devotion and prayer.

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Prompt (2)

February 7, 2012

Prose Prompt – Write a story with “Domestic Breakfast Scene” as your title.

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Prompt (1)

February 6, 2012

I wouldn’t go so far as to say I’ve been in a rut– I don’t have writer’s block, I’ve just lost desire to write. Today I went on a spree, looking for any & all writing prompts. Charlotte gave me an ER fic prompt which I intend to fill, just for shits and giggles, I’ve been reading Mary Oliver’s “A Poetry Handbook” (which is delightful, if not intimidating), and jotting random thoughts in my real journal; but none of that seems to count. Well, count in quotations, because I’m not really doing this for anyone else.

I found a long list of random prompts so I’m going to bastardize a few and try to get back on track. Really what I need, is a list of words or concepts. BUUUUT we are not going to worry about that. The following entry, (and the entries after) are going to be free writes.

Memoir Prompt – Answer the following: Do you have a mentor? Are you a mentor for someone? Tell about your relationship.

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