19 January, 2014


The other day, my design class met at Target to look at product packaging in preparation for a project.

When we'd finished pottering about taking phone pictures of popcorn bags and dish soap, we all walked toward the front of the store in a noisy, happy crowd.  As we walked, we passed a woman and - presumably - her older teenaged son. I noticed them because the lad was tall and handsome, and had a slim, interesting face - but it wasn't like I noticed them in an uncommon way.  I like looking at people, and the more interesting the face the better.  However, as we came up on them something seemed to go wrong.  The woman appeared to turn more towards the boy and spoke to him in a low voice, and he responded through nearly closed lips.  He seemed to grow agitated and he never looked at us.  As our group flowed around him and his cart, he lowered his head, and with shaking hands covered his eyes as if he couldn't bear our presence.  I just barely caught the whole scene before getting swept along.  It broke my heart.  I will never forget it.

It still breaks my heart.  I've never been so distracted by prayer in my life.  All I could think was, "God, help that poor boy.  Please, please, help that poor boy."

I wanted to do something.  Tell someone else in my class.  Go back and find him and hug him for forever and somehow make everything okay for forever.  Go back and look and find out somehow that I was mistaken, that nothing was wrong, that he was a healthy kid just out with his mom.

Sometimes there is just too much sadness.  And while I know that all of this sadness is just proof that suffering wasn't a part of the plan of the world, sometimes that's meagre comfort.  When I read the bio of a handsome 15 year old young man in foster care who loves cats and hopes his adoptive family has one - and I know that there's nothing I can do to give that boy his home and most simple request of a cat, and that the likelihood of his being adopted at such an older age is so slim - I hate the proof.  I will never forget it.

09 January, 2014

Celebrities I have... met.

Last night I dreamed Leonardo DiCaprio was my adopted brother, and I decided to take him a bunch of places so people would be all excited that he was there and wouldn't notice that I was late, had done no work, or was doing no work.  He was basically the answer to all of my slacker problems.

Which has made me notice something.  I think I might have a lot of dreams with famous people in them. Or, at least, more than a person might ordinarily have.
In dreams, I've also met Jennifer Lawrence (we were close friends, actually), Karlie Kloss, the band The Wombats, and Tom Hanks.  My sister dreams that Tom Hanks is our uncle all the time (he looks like he could be anyone's uncle, which is part of what makes him great), but she has not had the serious bonding time I've had with Jen.

In the first Jennifer Lawrence dream, we were messing around downtown where we rode an elevator that was deeply unsafe and more like a ride from the fair.  We talked about how she had found out he was going to play Katniss while cleaning up a mess on the floor at my house. We also went to a PetSmart, which, peculiarly, had beverages for sale - like a whole wall of glass containers like at a gas station - and Jennifer explained to me that there was some kind of margarita mix/juice that was delicious without the alcohol that she and her brothers had discovered and it was only sold at PetSmart.  I was sitting on the floor, laughing unhelpfully. In the back of my mind I had a feeling that she was going to offer me pot, and I thought, "Well, if Jennifer Lawrence offers it to me, I'm going to take it."  But I woke up before she could.

In the second, she was getting ready for a premier and I discovered that all her jewelry was like the plastic kiddy kind you buy at Rite-Aid, hooked onto little cardboard hangers. I thought, "Wow! Smart.  No one would notice."

P.S. I have actually met Shia LaBeouf at a Six Flags (during his Even Stevens days), and Jump5 back when they were a thing, and I sat one chair away from a very bearded Jason Schwartzman this past summer in a hip vegan restaurant. None of those encounters were anywhere near as good as being Jen's bestie, I have to admit.

P.P.S Last night (1.10.14) I dreamed I was dressed in some sort of period costume (may have been Jane Austen-ish)(all the ladies had mason jars of yogurt that matched the color of their dresses), and there was some odd sort of choice-making ceremony in which I was picked by chance to be the future bride of this snippy jerk.  And after responding to a moronic comment he made about how I'd arranged some strawberries on a plate, I turned to serve some of the strawberries to the woman to the left of me. It was Emma Thompson. She was rather professor Trelawney-ish, and as she dithered about I gently plopped strawberries on the side of her plate, which was already quite filled up with long, thin, curly shreds of peeled carrot. I really can't explain it.

Jennifer Lawrence and I went skiing.  I tried to make excuses because it looked cold out, but once I got out there I enjoyed it.
Later, some smallish polar bears sort of genteelly attacked my car, and I gave them dove chocolates to make them not eat me.

23 December, 2013

Play by play: Anna Karenina (ye beware of spoilers)

"Okay. I can do this. I read Moby Dick for Pete's sake."

"Hey, this isn't so bad. I get it. It's Jane Austen, but with characters that have eleven syllable names."

"Why does he have four names?  Is Oblonsky his first name? No, Stephan is is his first name, Oblonsky is his... extra name? I don't... whatever."

"ALL the characters are like REAL PEOPLE! REAL!"

"Wait. So are Anna and Vronsky like a real item now? I can't tell if they're actually, like, getting' it on already."

"I think I get why people think Tolstoy is a genius now."

"Oh. She's his baby mamma! Guess they are an item."

"I'm bored of the Karenins.  Come on Tolstoy, back to Levin and Kitty please."

"This is so messed up."


"Wait, this is only page 406... out of 817????  Anna's husband wants a divorce, Kitty and Levin just got engaged - WHAT ON EARTH CAN STILL HAPPEN IN THIS STORY?"

To be continued...

And now, that moment you've all been waiting for... VACATION!

So far I have read three books, begun another, and seen eleven movies (seven of which I watched alone).  I am catching up on all the time wasting I didn't do during school, obviously.

(These movies above are all the ones I hadn't seen before, which proves that I'm being good and watching new things instead of You've Got Mail and Mony Python and the Holy Grail a million times.)

Grease and the made-for-tv adaptation of A Wrinkle in Time (both of which I admittedly had to do some fast forwarding in because they were just SO BAD) have been the biggest disappointments so far.  Anna Karenina (the book, not the movie) has been, by far, the most pleasant surprise.  It's amazing. I totally get why people think Tolstoy is such a genius now.  I feel like I have all the characters walking around with me, all in a clump a few steps behind everywhere I go.  Which is either a sign that the characters all seem so alive and human that I can't help thinking of them as real people, or I'm insane.  Probably a bit of both.


05 December, 2013

Craig's friend is very genuinely sad that Jonna Newsom and Andy Sandberg got married.  The friend appears to believe the Andy is not good enough for her.  The unspoken inference is that he himself is right for her.

Does anyone else hate shaving as much as I do, yet can't not do it?  I tried to be one of those girls who doesn't shave, but I couldn't.  And you know what? In all these years of shaving, I still suck at it. Like, I always leave like a patch on one of my calves.
I'm sure I'd do a better job at it all if I had, like, that lady shaving gel, because it shows where you've shaved.  But since I never have that stuff I end up using conditioner (because after you buy the shampoo and conditioner together because having both is going to change your life, you don't use the conditioner because it's boring) and it never works quite as well.

I hope everyone had a great thanksgiving.   Peace out. 

02 December, 2013

"I'm not a real person yet"

I FINALLY saw this movie the other night.  And, even though I had really high expectations, it met and exceeded them.  It worried me, to no small degree, how much I related to Frances (and how others have related me to her too).  It also was disquieting to realize how many of my acquaintances, like, LIVE this movie.
But! It was one of the... truest movies I've seen in a while, and very refreshing.

I've been doing a lot of reading and watching of interviews about writing and acting and what makes good stories, and although I haven't come to a lot of strong conclusions, it's been interesting.

I have also recently realized that I am going to art school mainly now to equip myself for a fall-back trade.  Graphic design is not really a very hard field to get into, and to a large degree I enjoy it.

For the past two years, I haven't engaged in a lot of personal development, to be honest.  I've been dating, and gotten caught up in the whirlwind of new adventures and people and activities that are not solitary.  Most of the things I used to do a lot of - reading, watching movies, browsing in bookstores - are essentially solitary, and I let those things go when other people called me.

I'm not going to stop hanging out with people, but I am going to try to re-claim my time.  I need to figure out what I like again.  It sounds self-centered, but I really do need to learn how to be myself again, and independent person who has something of my own to offer.

I know that loosing her personhood isn't what Frances is dealing with - she's got a whole stack of other issues on her plate (like truly becoming a grown up, letting friendships change and mature and die, stuff like that)- but what makes me think of her is that I think she knows what she loves.  She's just one step ahead of me: she knows what she wants, and now she has to fight for it.

I've been reading more.  I'm taking an English class in the fall.  I'm working on it.

28 September, 2013

3:07 am: the golden hour.

This, my friends, is the face of insomnia.

The main benefit of not being able to sleep is that I'm getting a lot done.  I made a decent logo last night, and did some decent drawing tonight. For some reason, maybe it's because I'm tired and the house is absolutely quiet, just enough of my brain shuts down and I hit that golden spot where I can create without over thinking things or getting too nervous or critical, like I do during the daytime when my mind is supposed to be fresh and ready for vigorous activity.

I think that may be the key to good art making! You can't stare something down and confront it head on . You have to glance at it from the sides of your eyes and convince it that you're not trying to do anything at all and it won't matter if it turns out good - and then presto! You've made something you don't abhor.

This is splendid! I know how to make art now! I guess all I have to do is... not sleep.