Posts Tagged ‘stories’

Rendered Speechless

December 27, 2018

I don’t often look at old photographs.

I just did.

Work photos from over sixteen years ago.

Longer, perhaps, though not much more than eighteen years, I’ve been in San Francisco for sixteen, so they have to be at least that old.

There’s a private Facebook page with photographs of a place I used to run for six years.

1996-2002 I was the Floor Manager at the Angelic Brewing Company in Madison, Wisconsin.

A lot of the photographs are ones that I took myself.

Although I don’t have the album that they are located in.

I used to take a lot of staff photos.

Before Facebook and camera phones.

I kept a photo album in the office and I would put it out during big staff events.

Most usually the annual holiday party that I was in charge of organizing and running.

We got silly.

I remember one year I bought a bunch of disposable cameras.

Oh the pictures on those cameras.

Many stories.

I was rendered speechless though when I saw a photograph of myself that may have been at my heaviest weight when I was working there.

I don’t actually know what I weighed.

I didn’t like to use the scale.

But I do know that the shirt I was wearing was a size 26.

I now wear a size eleven.

So much has changed.

I just sat on my couch before logging onto my computer and I had an abstinent meal.

Abstinent for me means no flour (of any kind–almond, oat, coconut, corn, wheat, etc) and no sugar.

I do eat fruit, so I get sugar that way, though I tend to not eat fruit with my dinner.

I will.

Just not always.

Fruit is a sort of desert for me.

For dinner tonight I had about a 1/2 c of sautéed broccoli with a cup of brown rice and a roasted chicken leg and thigh.

I had some bubbly water and I listened to jazz.

When I think about the way I ate when I ran the Angelic.

Oh my God.

Freaks me out a little.

Sort of like how the picture did.

I almost want to post it here but I’m not actually sure how to do that and I am also not really sure I want to post it anyway.

I am grateful though for the changes I have gone through and for the good reminder that although my body doesn’t look the exact way I want it to, it looks a hell of a lot better than it did.

I mean.

I used to have a double chin.

I haven’t had a double chin in a long ass time and I am hella grateful for that.

The amazing thing about the photo is that I’m doing the splits on the bar.

I was a lot more limber then than I am now.

I was also studying to get my black belt in Kung Fu.

That also blows my mind, that I got a black belt at the weight I was.

I wonder sometime what it would have been like if I had lost the weight sooner.

But really that doesn’t do me much good to think about that, it’s just fantasy and speculation.

I also had to have some recovery under my belt before I could get abstinent, recovery, therapy, self-care.

A lot of that.

Self-love.

I am really quite proud of myself when I see how very far I have come.

All things considered.

I shouldn’t be where I am at today.

I am very, very, very grateful.

I’m also grateful to have gotten through Christmas.

Three gay boys, two movies, and one sushi dinner.

It was an official San Francisco Christmas.

Matinee at the Kabuki, hanging out in the Castro, then the Metreon in the evening.

I am grateful too for the people I spent time with.

I am grateful for San Francisco being my home.

I am grateful for all the lovely gifts I was given.

The biggest one, always does seem to be perspective.

That’s why the photo hit me so hard.

Just how far I have come.

I’m 46 now.

I look so much better at 46 than I did at 26.

I may have been a little older in the photo, but my weight would have been about the same.

It got bad there for a bit.

But then I think, I needed to be the way I was, to feel safe.  I ate to feel safe in a body that was not a safe place to inhabit.

I ate because I had been hurt.

I did not want to hurt anymore.

I also ate because it was a compulsion.

There were times when I would find myself in the dark raiding the desert fridge at work– shoving an entire piece of Irish Cream pie into my mouth, one, two, three pieces in under five minutes.

I hated it and I couldn’t stop it.

I also didn’t realize that once I put sugar into my body it was sort of on.

Sugar is just as addictive as many narcotics.

Sugar activates the same place in the brain that cocaine does.

I loved cocaine.

And before I had cocaine.

I had sugar.

I had a lot of it.

God.

Just thinking about how much soda I drank too.

Ugh.

I mean.

I worked in the service industry for two decades.

I did not drink diet soda ever, I scoffed at it.

I drank straight up Coca Cola.

I drank vats of it.

When you work in the service industry you usually get free soda.

And because I was in management, I got free meals.

French fries dipped in sour cream.

Fried fish sandwiches with buckets of tartar sauce.

Pasta with chicken and mushrooms and cream sauce and parmesan and bread sticks.

OH bread sticks.

Idaho nachos–cottage fries instead of corn chips–with heaps of cheese and chicken and black beans and guacamole and sour cream.

Pizza.

Pizza.

Pizza.

Beer cheese soup.

And it was a brewery, so yes, lots of beer too, many, many, many pints.

Ex-employees used to joke about how they would lose the “Angelic 20” when they stopped working there since they weren’t always drinking the beer.

Which was not light in any sense of the word.

Oh.

How things have changed.

For the better.

I might have a nostalgic moment once in a great while for something.

But not ever looking like that picture again?

That will kill any craving I might have.

Fact is.

I don’t crave food, when you don’t have it in your system, the urge goes away.

Hella grateful for that too.

So here’s to not having to make New Years resolutions.

I am resolved every day.

I am happy.

Joyous.

Abstinent.

And.

Motherfucking.

Free.

 

Back Home

September 5, 2018

With a huge stack of books and notebooks and pages and pages and pages of syllabi.

Oh my God.

What have I fucking done?

I went from feeling pretty good about it all to feeling super overwhelmed after my last class.

The irony being that it was the class I figured I was going to enjoy the most.

Of course, with some perspective, I still think I am going to enjoy it the most, but I am awash in the anxiety of having to produce the work.

There is a lot of work.

Yesterday’s class blew me out of the water at the intensive.

I really liked the professor.

In fact, I am quite fond of him as he swooped in one morning seeing me sitting by myself at breakfast and made me join his table at the intensive.

We had a great talk.

He loves Paris.

I love Paris.

We are now friends.

Plus, he has had an extraordinary life, three marriages, multiple degrees, Harvard, Brown, CIIS, somewhere else I forget.

Of course he has a PhD as well.

And a lot of papers that he’s written and he seems to be the co-collaborator of the way the course work is designed.

First of all.

Let me say that I had some, well, not exactly contempt, but a little wiggle of worry that because my PhD is an “online” program, that it would not be academically rigorous.

Fuck my life.

Academic rigor galore.

In fact, as one second year told me, she thinks that we actually do more work than a traditional PhD program and I think she’s right.

Second.

I was in the dark a little about the length.

I had this idea that the program is only two years long.

The course work is only two years long.

Then there’s methodology, the comprehensive exams, research, the writing, the proposal and the defense of said proposal.

The course work will be four semesters.

Then I can expect at least another four more semesters of work to finish the dissertation.

Which means two more years.

And the professor made it very clear that the fastest anyone could possible do the whole shebang was 4.5 years.

What I heard from most of the people in the program was that if I did the course work and stayed the course with my research, readings, writing, methods, etc, that it would take in total about 5 years.

So.

It’s no different from any other doctoral program with the exception of the majority of the coursework is submitted online and that a large component of all my classes is to interact and engage with the learning community on-line.

There are 30 of us in the cohort split into two sections.

There are three classes.

Introduction to Transformative Society; Self, Society, and Transformation; and Creative Inquiry: Scholarship for the 21st Century.

I am the only student from San Francisco, though the school is located in San Francisco.

There were a lot of students from the East Coast, New York mainly, I think six of my fellows were from New York, one from up state New York.

One from London, a University Professor of Psychoanalytics and Psychodynamics.

One student from Hong Kong.

One student from Oakland.

Another from somewhere in the East Bay, a few from up North, somewhere in Canada, I totally forget now, another from D.C.

The woman from D.C. was also an MFT and teaches as well at university level, specifically Art Therapy and Play Therapy for adults, she was super sweet and insisted I call her if I have any questions about marketing or setting up my private practice internship.

Said internship that although I took materials with me to work on I did absolutely no work on at all, I was so immersed in the classroom experience and the work at the intensive.  And I read a lot while I was there on my breaks, as much as I could without totally isolating myself in my room.

Anyway, a lot of high-caliber, smart people.

Majority of them women, which was very, very cool.

Grateful to be part of some smart, intelligent, driven women.

Very grateful.

One of whom came up to me with a piece of paper today in a notebook that she was keeping to show to our future selves, our name with Dr. in front of it.

I was more than happy to write mine down.

Dr. Carmen Regina Martines.

Fuck that looks good.

And now I can stop giving myself grief that I maybe was in an “easy” PhD program because it was two years and online.

Silly rabbit.

It is not easy at all.

The great thing that I realized though, after having a bit of panic and overwhelm when I was in my Creative Inquiry class yesterday, is that the material is not beyond me.

I understand the concepts, they make sense.

Oh sure, a lot of the material is new to me, I haven’t studied these things before, but I have been reading academic papers and books now at a higher level of understanding for the last three years and the materials are not cowing me.

Nope.

Not at all.

That was a nice realization for me to make.

What was causing the panic was the number of deliverables that I must have for Creative Inquiry.

8 papers.

8!

And though some of them are short, I have a couple that are not, and two that are quite big.

Plus I have to get published.

Are you fucking kidding me.

I have to actually publish a review of a scholarly journal.

Holy shit.

Now.

I am excited.

But yesterday I was just overwhelmed.

What the fuck?  I remember thinking I have to get something published too as a requirement of the course, Jesus, plus, oh, great, thanks, I also found out that I have another book to read, in addition to the books already lined up for the course, I had to pick one of four others that were presented.

Let me say this.

I will not be going anywhere without carrying a book or an article to read.

That’s why I got overwhelmed, 8 papers for this class, three for Self and Society, and one big whopper for Intro to Transformative Studies.

Plus weekly discussions and comments and interactions with my cohort.

I worked a lot on my calendar yesterday and I’m not 100% certain, but it looks like I will have to read two to three books per week to get through all the material.

Well, not quite, more like 2.5 per week.

Plus the articles, many of them big, long, academic papers of over 30 pages, and every class has three or four of these a week.

So yeah.

The material doesn’t scare me, it’s just getting the time to do it.

I’m not sure what’s going to have to go out of my schedule, but somethings definitely are.

Maybe a few less blogs a week.

Maybe.

I’ll let you know.

For now, I’m just happy I’m home and all my stuff is put away and I get to sleep in my own bed tonight.

Very happy for that.

Very.

 

Small Steps

July 28, 2017

Add up.

I keep telling myself that as I slowly start tracking my hours for my MFT license.

I also reiterated that to myself and an old friend that I had the pleasure of catching up with today over coffee and lunch in Hayes Valley.

We hadn’t seen each other in years and it was like old times.

And yes.

We’ve gotten older.

And older is all I’m going to get.

I don’t mind.

I like myself more and more.

I feel like I am entering my prime, not exiting it.

I have so very much to live for and I am so grateful that I have carved out this life here in San Francisco.

I don’t have to think about how long it will take to get my hours, I will get my hours, it will happen, the time will pass and one day it will be a story that I tell someone else who is beginning the process.

Things take time.

Sometimes things happen quickly, they fall into place, and there is a beauty and grace to it.

I am often reminded of what a very wise woman said to me years ago, “if it’s meant to be you can’t fuck it up and if it’s not meant to be, you can’t manipulate it into happening.”

My career path is like that.

For the longest time I tried this and that and the other to make it as a creative.

A writer.

A poet.

Maybe a screen writer, I certainly had and do have some interesting ideas for movies, but nothing panned out.

Oh.

Sure.

I have this, my blog, and it’s panned out fantastically, I throw my stuff at the screen in front of me, I process my day, I get things out, I figure it out mostly by not figuring it out, but by taking the creative action of just showing the fuck up here consistently.

But.

I have never really made it as a writer.

Not that I’m not a writer.

I’m fucking writing right now.

I’m good.

I’m not great.

But I would hazard that I am better than plenty of folks that do get published.

Perhaps it’s that I don’t understand how to submit, or that I don’t submit the right stuff or that I am not as good as I believe, it’s beyond me is what I’m saying.

One day it may not be.

Today it is and suffice to say.

I don’t give a flying fuck.

I love writing.

I love poetry.

I love expressing myself.

And this is my medium.

I don’t write for an audience.

Oh.

Sure.

Sometimes I may be addressing you, sometimes things sneak in and there’s a message between the lines, I won’t say that there’s not.

But I do really do the writing for myself.

But it’s not a career.

The dividends that have paid off are vast and varied, the people who I have met because of my blog, the things I have done, the experiences I have had, especially when my blog was a little more public, were and have been astounding.

Too many to list here.

However.

Most of the time the pay off has not been cash money.

In some round about ways, though, it has paid off more than handsomely.

I expressed to my friend today that I am often a bit ridiculed, or teased, ridiculed seems a harsher word than the poking fun I get from my cohort, for how fast I can write papers for class.

It really hasn’t been too much to sit down and knock out a big paper in one sitting, in a few hours.

If I have an idea of what I am writing, if I have done my research, taken good notes and done my reading for the class, I can crank it out.

I can do that because I do this, consistently, my rate of typing is fast.

I haven’t timed it in a long time, but it does seem that my thoughts fly from my brain and to my fingers quite quickly.

I will publish, I know that.

I will publish poems.

I will publish essays.

I will publish my memoir, although it needs severe re-writing.

It may not be the book I originally wrote.

But it will have the skeleton of the manuscript, I am sure of that.

My writing goals have not been met, but they will be, I am sure of that.

When isn’t important.

And I will publish psychology papers.

In some odd sort of twist that may be where I find my first publications, I don’t know exactly, but I do think that I will find that as an avenue for my work.

I have had great reviews of my school papers and I think with some tweaking I could probably submit some of those papers to psychology publications.

Who knows.

I just know that it will happen.

And I’m fine with the process being what it is.

I don’t have to manipulate it into happening and I can’t fuck it up.

Unless I stop.

Which right now seems impossible.

I have stories and stories and stories.

All the words.

There are so many.

So beautiful, like birds on a wire, like the scattershot of sunshine sparkling from the froth of waves, like the way love endears itself further into my heart when I am least expecting it.

My friend and I parted ways and I reflected as I got on my scooter and headed over to my job, my day job, that I have it pretty motherfucking good.

I do.

I have discovered many things about myself in the dozen or so years my friend and I have known each other and they all seem to have played beautiful and rich into the hand that I have been dealt.

I am on the path and in the place I am meant to be.

“You look amazing,” he said.

And you know what?

I feel amazing.

I think that shows.

Happy.

Joyous.

Motherfucking.

Free.

 

When I Lose You

July 20, 2017

It will hurt.

What if you don’t have to?

What if?

You don’t have to lose me?

Don’t listen to those old stories lover mine.

They are just dusty faded book jackets for unrequited love.

Those stories don’t apply to us.

We are something more.

Something more than finite.

Infinite love.

Infinite good.

God smacked.

Graced.

Gorgeous, golden, you.

I have besmirched my heart for you.

And

I will stand naked before any jury.

Gallows.

Be damned.

Ours is not the history of failure.

Rising above the fog.

Riding along the waves which batter my heart.

And.

Grind down the rough edges.

All the shows and previews that your mind have written for you.

Well.

They are not true.

Not true in the sense of who we are.

Who I am.

I am so adorned in my love for you.

All this.

Passion.

Dirty blues songs ain’t got nothing on me.

Enhanced by your love.

I will wear it like the war paint of gods.

Driving further into the land of unknown.

Despite.

How well I know the darkness there, the fear that can come.

Careening out of those chasms.

I am stronger.

I will sing for you.

Cry for you.

Fight.

I am not going anywhere.

You cannot lose something that belongs to you.

I am a part of you.

As you have been imparted to me.

A blessing.

A gift.

Gracing me with all that is you.

All that is the glory of you.

It has been pressed into my skin.

All.

The.

Glorious.

Glad hearted.

Gorgeousness.

That.

Is.

You.

Don’t worry baby.

Baby mine.

I am not going anywhere.

Not now.

Not at.

Any.

Time.

Snuggle Britches

July 16, 2015

“I need a snuggle,” I told my friend tonight.

“Are you coming over?”

That’s right.

I have a friend with benefits.

Cuddles that is.

I used to have “friends with benefits” and they were not of the snuggling sort.

I cannot tell you how good it is for me to be having this kind of intimacy.

The simple, sweet, intense, personal connection with a friend who holds your hand and listens to your stories.

Someone who likes listening to your stories.

Everyone has a story to tell.

But.

Sometimes I am just not interested in hearing it or vice versa.

The gift of having someone who is actually interested in what you are saying and wants to listen and you can talk to and happens to live in the neighborhood.

Well.

That is a gift.

A huge gift.

And it’s a new way of interacting for me.

The one who is always ready to jump into a romantic, fantasy, or otherwise, relationship with someone, its new behaivor,  a new way of acting and reacting, a new way of being.

I’m into it.

I am almost obscenely grateful for it.

Especially after the way I stuck my foot in my mouth with my friend last Friday.

We were able to amend the relationship and move forward and we’re still friends, if anything, it seems to have deepened and the relationship moves apace.

I may have even convinced him to go to Burning Man.

In fact, I hit up the list of campers that I am going with and asked if anyone had a spare ticket.

I have never, ever, ever asked for someone before.

And I have had a lot of folks ask me over the years.

Sometimes folks I don’t even know.

Last year I was getting hit up on my Instagram feed for tickets.

I was at the event a week and a half before it started and was posting photographs and complete random strangers were messaging me asking for tickets.

Please.

It was annoying.

And now I am that person.

But.

This person means a lot to me and there’s just something to showing a person who has never been what the event is all about.

Because it’s not about the party for either one of us.

It’s about the art, the experience, the people, the community.

It’s about love.

And I want my friend to see that.

Plus, as much as I don’t always care to admit it.

Burning Man, is for me, an indelible part of my being and person.

I really found a voice for myself and my authenticity within the community that I have only found in one other place and the two fellowships have become rather inseparable for me.

I am who I am because of Burning Man.

And I wouldn’t have been able to go to Burning Man without first being a part of my fellowship.

It all goes round and the two intertwine and overlap and I am grateful for the permeable membrane of love which allows the overlap.

I have my people in both camps and I want my person in this experience too.

So.

Yeah.

You got a spare ticket.

You hit me up.

I got a friend.

I got a lot of busy too.

I have not had the space at work to do some of my regular phone calls and check ins, because well, grandparent visit.

Which on one hand is great.

Who doesn’t want their lunch paid for, and their dinner for that matter?

I have eaten out frequently this week with the grandparents and that is fun.

On the other, at times, I feel alternately too superfluous, there’s so many adults to so many little people, and also busier than usual as I help prep and clean up and do household maintenance along with my nanny duties.

They’ve been here since last Thursday, tomorrow they leave and I will go back to my “normal” amount of work, which is still quite a lot.

The day does just fly by.

But any romanticized idea about being able to do work and school work, like I have had quite a few people suggest–oh you’ll just read while they nap.

No.

I won’t.

I take a break and they aren’t napping.

They have quiet time, but there’s no real quiet time for me.

Yes.

I have a chance to sit down and eat.

But.

“Carmen! Carmen! Carmen!” The youngest hollered down at me.

“I have to potty!”

He’s three.

Run up the stairs, hustle him into the bathroom, re-settle him, dash back downstairs, get a little more of my cup of tea in me, check an e-mail, think, but not actually do anything about what I am thinking because.

“Carmen! Carmen! Carmen!”

Jesus kid.

Ugh.

Run up the stairs, retrieve a pillow, re-settle him, dash around, find the stuffed husky dog, retrieve it, give back to older brother, go back downstairs, clean up the kitchen, organize snacks for afternoon adventure, with grandparents, to The Randall Museum’s little outpost in the Mission.

Side bar.

The Park and Recreations Department in the Mission on Treat Street between 20th and 21st is a jewel!

I had no clue it was there and not only is the building housing the Randall Museum’s Live Animal Exhibit until the renovations on the Cornona Heights facility are finished, it also has a large out-door play area/playground with a beautiful open air roof and trellised vines and flowers.

It is stunning.

Well loved, I think is the nice way to say it, and slightly run down, but stunning.

And a delight to find another resource for the boys in the Mission, that’s a little off the beaten track, quiet, and yes, has clean and very accessible bathrooms.

End sidebar.

I sit back down.

I watch the monitor.

The oldest boy is simultaneously practicing head stands on his bed and pulling down every single book on his shelves while the youngest has navigated all the laundry out of his hamper and placed it in a few choice spots that I will have to retrieve later, as well as pulling out the giant excavator from his closet, moving all the blankets from his bed to the top bunk on the bunk bed, to finally, yes, I kid you not, putting his pillow in front of the closed-door and taking his favorite stuffed cat, Meow Meow, and his blanket and falling asleep blocking the door to his room.

God.

I love these boys.

“Carmen! Carmen! Carmen!”

Yes.

“I need a snuggle.”

Me too, darling.

Now excuse me while I go take care of that.

I Didn’t Call That Many People

June 26, 2014

From Paris.

I told my friend with an arched eyebrow.

He was one of the few I did call.

There was the fantasy land man.

Who lived in my fantasy land world, saying goodbye to that fantasy was probably more difficult than saying good bye to the actual man himself.

But saying good bye to my friend then, as in tonight, was much harder.

I don’t know that I ever told him that.

He asked what was hardest about leaving for Paris, as he is about to embark on a five month long journey across the Universe.

Not perhaps the universe as it pertains to leaving a country to live in another country, but the unfolding multi-layered, land of the unknown, and that is a universe.

Vast in scope.

The last time I saw my friend, I will not lie, he was my lover, and so too there was another layer of experience to entertwine with it all.

And fantasy too of course.

He told me once after I had just gotten back from Paris that he had hoped I would never return.

Not in a mean way.

Not in that way of, I didn’t ever want to see you again, but in that, I was really rooting for you to make it there.

I left with all intentions of leaving.

He will be returning, he’s got a job to return to, a rent controlled pad in the Mission (which means he will never truly leave San Francisco), and a plethora of love for the city by the Bay.

Besides somebody who like food as much as he does just ain’t gonna be able to stay away.

That difference in our experience didn’t allow me to exactly be able to pin down for him the depth of feeling that  I was having as I said good bye to people and places San Francisco (like, why did I wait this long to do this thing, go to that place, and now it’s too late).

“You were pretty wrecked by the time I showed up for your going away party,” he mentioned to me.

I was.

It was abysmal.

I remember talking to another dear friend that morning and telling her how much I was struggling with just showing up for it.

I would have prefered to have slunk off in the night.

Sometimes, though, certain things stay with you.

I took an actual photograph on my friend as he lazed on my chaise in the corner sipping tea and ponitificating on the experience of the experience, because I wanted to remember.

I am sure I will, but sometimes memory fades and a good photo remains to remind me.

The last time I saw him before I left for Paris was not when he kissed me good bye on the corner of Valencia and 14th Street.

About to roar off in another man’s car after having my tryst with my lover the night before.

No.

It was watching him walk into the gas station on Mission and 14th.

Maybe he was getting a soda.

Maybe a pack of cigarettes, though I don’t recall him smoking at the time.

I do recall driving the Audi convertible down 14th to hit the freeway heading back over to East Oakland where I had another night or two of getting what little I left to do done, and seeing him.

I wanted to holler.

I wanted to wave.

I wanted to freeze the moment in time.

And that is what I did instead of calling attention to him.

I was driving off, soon to be flying off, leaving on a jet plane, as the story goes.

He was turning the corner, shoulders hunched up just a bit, hands in the pockets of his sweatshirt, glasses on his face catching a splinter of sunlight, cabbie hat cocked sideways, brim pulled low.

I saw him as he reached for the door to the gas station across the street from the Armory, and then he as he stepped inside.

The light turned green.

“Goodbye lover,” I said out loud, not loud enough to be heard anywhere but inside my heart.

And then I drove off.

I remember hitting the on ramp and accelerating through the turn and whooping.

I felt so light.

So.

Aloft.

I had leapt.

I had not yet landed, but I had leapt and there was no going home now.

No home to go home to.

Only the future to move forward into.

Paris.

France.

Go baby go.

Of course that fantasy was squelched, but I did go and I will keep doing things like that, perhaps not so uprooting, I don’t know that I am supposed to do that again, but more letting go, baby go, of those fantasies.

There was one in which, many years, maybe seven, ten, I would hear from him and we would reunite and things would get wild and wooly and right.

But that fantasy.

Well is just that.

Fantasy.

What did happen is that I came back, the world moved on, he moved on, love happened then.

In the cusp between friendship and being lovers, something else grew, a knowing of the person and of myself.

I don’t expect anything else now from the relationship.

Well.

A postcard from the edge would be nice.

He’s got my address.

A story.

That’s what I would like, but that’s not a fantasy either, that’s getting to bear witness to someone elses experience and laugh or cry or commiserate with it and be tied to them in yet another way.

How fortunate I am to see my friend tonight before he embarks on his own life changing journey.

To say, “I love you,” and know it full in my heart and let it all go.

Not the love, not the friend, but the fantasy, the idea of the story that I tell myself.

My home.

Now.

Here.

In San Francisco at the edge of the city, the edge of the world, on the brink of the sea, is exactly where I am supposed to be.

The only geographic I will be pulling anytime soon is one with my hair.

I am here to stay.

If only to be here so I can say hello to my friend when he returns.

Bon Voyage my darling.

May your travels be safe.

But not too safe.

Go eat the world.

 

Open The Door To Opportunity

January 23, 2014

“I mean,” she said, with a pause and a knowing look, “you could meet people in your studio, but the odds are pretty slim.”

Ugh.

She’s right, but sometimes it is hard to get out of a routine to find ways to open that door and walk through it, to try something different, to make space for a new interest, be it person or thing.

“Why don’t you try the Moth.” She added, then, paused, “you know about the Moth don’t you?”

I do now.

I have been looking at the format on and off for a few weeks since she made that suggestion.

It’s a storytelling affair.

Started in New York, and has meandered its way across the USA to San Francisco.

Oh, I simplify, honestly, I don’t know jack about it.

However, I just signed up to go to the one that is at Public Works this upcoming Tuesday, January 28th.

There was a slam recently, the 13th of this month, at The Rickshaw Stop, but apparently it is no longer being hosted there.

I was just on Public Works website to find out what the deal was.

I really should go back to the site and buy a ticket as well.

I just signed up to go, I didn’t actually purchase the ticket.

Suddenly shy.

Suddenly at a loss for stories.

I have a million stories.

Jesus.

When did I get nerves?

If I can do spoken word in Paris I can show the hell up and tell a five-minute story at Public Works.

Excuse me, what?

They are not selling tickets for it on Public Works website, so I am uncertain if I just show up and throw my hat in the ring or what.

But I will find out.

I am actually going to Public Works on Friday evening.

A dear friend had a birthday a little while back and was unable to celebrate as she was down for the count with the awful flu that made its vicious rounds recently throughout the city.

She is making up for it by going dancing on Friday.

Plus, it’s a Heart Deco event, and I love me some Heart Deco–Burning Man–dancing.  There will be loads of friendly faces there and good music and I will get my groove the fuck on.

I will also find out what the deal is with the Moth.

I booked it into my calendar and although it’s on a school night, I figure, come on, you have to do it.

I have to continue expanding my creative base.

Not because I expect to get anything from it either.

I just want to the experience of doing it.

I also feel like I am a good story-teller.

Not the greatest, but not too bad, and I think I can handle my own for five minutes.

What I like about the format, although it makes a girl nervous, is that you don’t get any props, no notes, no cues, just you and a microphone.

And it has to be a true story and it has to be about you.

The theme for this show is “Beginnings”.

I have no clue what I will tell a story about.

I searched my blog archives with that term and turned up a few, all about Paris, and I suppose I could come up with something to tell about that.

I have until Tuesday to figure it out and practice.

I suppose I may even write a new piece.

I certainly would have to re-draft a blog if I used one, the blogs are not really written from the standpoint of being told as a story, although the narrative is all my, and only mine, I don’t write with the idea of performing my blog.

I am a performance all on my fucking own.

“Marco!”  I hollered out to a friend I saw standing on the corner of La Playa and Judah.

“Polo!” Some wise ass called out, as my friend looked around bewildered.

“Marco!”  I yelled and waved.

“Polo!” Three more people chimed in.

Oh, I give up, as my friend turned confused on his phone trying to pinpoint where I was hailing from.

It reminded me of being outside a cafe in Noe Valley with my friend Shadrach on the phone and he kept asking my email, which is my full name and thus sometimes a bit of a nuisance getting it to folks over the phone who tend to misspell my last name, and shouting, I mean shouting at the top of my lungs, my name.

“What was that, say it slower,” he chuckled abruptly.

“You fucker!” I said, turning bright red.

I had been shouting my full name, middle and all, for over three minutes in front of Martha’s Coffee and had many a person turn and stare at me.

“Gotcha.”

Yeah.

I can make a scene without even meaning to.

I can tell a story.

I can stand up in front of a room full of people and tell my story.

I have done that quite a few times.

Although, only infrequently in five minutes.

Though, I have done that as well.

I could wing the whole god damn thing too.

I just got an idea.

Oh.

I don’t know if I want to do it, but I do have an idea of a beginning.

Shit, I should, I just celebrate the 9th year of that said beginning.

I wonder how I could craft that into something without blowing my.

Well.

I can’t say, now can I?

Ha.

Anyway.

There’s fodder there.

There’s fodder everywhere.

“I don’t usually enjoy stream of conscious writing,” an old acquaintance said to me today as we met for coffee (hey, look at me, doing something outside of my schedule!  See I can take suggestions, pardon me while I preen over here), “but there’s something about the way you write, it’s really unaffected.”

Yup.

It’s just me.

And a lot of the time I just open up the blank page and go for it.

There it is too.

Every time I blog.

A new beginning.

A new way of shaping myself and my story.

A new way of seeing.

I guess I just gave myself something to work on while I stand in line at 850 Bryant on Friday waiting to contest my “traffic” infraction.

Maybe I will practise on the judge.

Baha.


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