Monday, February 27, 2012

Ipso Facto

And now I would like to issue a sincere and hearty thanks to Justin Greer for sharing the following two-word phrase that has completely revolutionized my life:

12 minutes.

Perhaps the profundity needs clarification.

I am, what some might call, "emotional." To say I carry my heart on my sleeve is a bit like saying the ocean is a bit wet or that Newt Gingrich is a bit of a douchebag.

As such, (an emotional person...not a wet douchebag) I tend to carry the weight of the world on my shoulders. I harbor long-past hurts and occasionally rehash them. I take cat and nine tails of painful memories to my back on the regular. I do this over and over and over again. And, while I tell myself I do this "so I will learn something" or "so that I become a better person," these evenings spent often end like a date with Chris Brown: I find myself returning home from an emotional escapade bloody and bruised, trying desperately to explain to the officers why "but I love him" is a good reason for me to stay.

The shocker? This way of life is no longer working for me.

I need a new method...but how to acquire one?

In my youth I turned to elders for wisdom. But this time I turned to my younger brother.

Like myself, my brother's been through some shit. But as this is not his blog, I will not divulge the nature of said shit. (Especially not to YOU, Nosy!) So let's just suffice to say that in a recent situation, I turned to sensei Justin-Oh-My-Justin for answers--and what he gave me was 12 minutes.

You see, 12 minutes is the length of an initial emotional response to stimulus. Ie. When you find out your girlfriend is cheating on you with your least favorite cousin, when you realize you've been robbed and the TSR Silver Anniversary Edition of Dungeons & Dragons was not insured, when you discover the next morning that what you thought was a condom was really his dubiously successful attempt to use a candy wrapper as contraception--that initial kick in the gut? It lasts 12 minutes.

"Everything after that you do to yourself."

That's right, friends. When you experience a trauma, the first 12 minutes are like an emotional "on-the-house." You can't be blamed. The reaction is involuntary. (For those of you CSI inclined, these are the minutes that constitute the "temporary insanity" plea.) In these 12 minutes, your gut's gonna do what your gut's gonna do. And it's gonna hurt. Like a motherfucker.

But... "everything after that you do to yourself."

I don't think I have ever been privy to more powerful and inspiring words in the entirety of my life.

This means that days spent lashing myself over past mistakes and nights spent crying over what I would do differently if given the chance--all of that pain and heartache and misery? I was responsible for it. I did it. To myself. And--what's more important--I can choose to stop.

12 minutes.

If I want to, I can make it where I never have to feel more than 12 minutes of pain again. What used to take years to overcome can be tackled during an episode of "Futurama" if I so choose.

The past gave up its power to harm me the moment it became the present.
I am in charge of my present.
I choose my future.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Shameless Plug

As many of you know, I act.
As even more f you know, I fully support shameless self promotion.
So in that vein, I wanted to share two things:

1. My blog page about the short I co-wrote and directed, for which I am looking to plan a premiere. You can check out the trailer, cast and crew here:

2. I had the immense privilege to act in this amazing film. I'd love for you to watch it, like it, and tell your friends to do likewise. The more "watches" we receive, the higher our chances of being selected to go to Hollywood with Campus Movie Fest. Check it out. Send me to Hollywood.

More shameless promotions to come soon.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Candy Ruins Your Teeth

I will never be a priest.

Obvious gender conflicts aside, I just don't see the appeal.
I mean, sure you get the love and respect of your flock. You get the soul salve of knowing you are, if true to your mission, doing some good in the world. And you get to wear a black dress all the time, so no one can even tell when you are having one of your "fat days."

But are love, respect, philanthropy and comfortable fashions really worth the trade off?

Poverty? No thanks.
Celibacy? I'll pass.
Chastity? Not a chance.

Whatever happened to absolute power? To that time where being in the service of Our Lord and the Catholic Church meant accepting and pocketing indulgences, taking private mistresses, plotting the ascension or ruin of kings, manipulating the politic and generally speaking running afoul of all of God's laws in the name of piety, righteousness and the papacy?

In other words, the good old days...

The days wherein I would've wandered about the most prestigious institutions in all Europe and had everyone bow to me. The days where I would allow the impoverished and the starving to kiss my bejeweled hand. The days when I could have illegitimate children with multiple women but would refuse, under God's law and by His authority, to grant you a divorce. The days when, rather than debate with those smarter than me (*ahem* Galileo), I could just have said insurgeant excommunicated as a heretic. Or burned at the stake.

THAT, my friends, is a clergy I'D sign up for.
The days when absolute power corrupted absolutely.
And I would fancy myself the most corrupted one.

But now?
Now with the media reporting on every indiscretion?
Now with so many religious options aside from the one true church?
Now with no social and political power to manipulate the course of human events?

Eh. I have to respectfully decline. I just don't see anything in it for me. And besides, I've already got a loose black dress anyway.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012


I am fiercely loyal, self deprecating
A fan of the underdog and celebrating
The mysteries of life, the beauty of pain,
the infinite sorrow, the fleeting gain.

I love with a vengeance; I fight with a cause--
These are my strengths and also my flaws.

I'm a lover and a friend, a goddess and a tease
And yet-- I am none of these.

If you want fantasy, I can do the stage
But if you seek brutal honesty, you've found the right page.

Not much for rhyme, I seldom do reason.
I write when inspired, I change with the seasons.

I'm a beast and a beauty, a madonna and whore,
Say what you will but I'm never a bore.

A writer, an actress, a girl on your scene
A memory, a nightmare And your favorite dream.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

T*tties and Beer! Or: Why Size Matters

For some, "rock bottom" would likely be defined by a rainy morning spent half-clothed and sketching in a gutter of some sort, sick and retching from yet another night of drunken debauchery and copious methamphetamine use.

For me, the term has a somewhat different manifestation.

To experience my version of utter (gutter?) Hell, one need simply replace the rainy morning with a nice Friday night, the gutter with a brightly-lit bar featuring the sport-of-the moment simulcast on 15 tv screens, and the methamphetamines with hot wings. The half-clothed and retching from drunken debauchery aspects? Keep those.

Yesterday I applied to work at Hooters.


Yes, like the ever-funny Jenna Marbles before me, I have decided to boost myself by finding a job that's super degrading. I'm gonna pump myself up before every shift by crying over my Master's Degree. Seems that, as Miss Marbles so eloquently highlighted, a woman's worth is not now, nor has it ever been, in any way associated with the size of her brain...

Which is not to say that size doesn't matter.

Size, like brain power, is measured in numbers. But while a score of 180 may make you a genius, a score of 34C, whether real or silicone, makes you a Hooters girl.

And which is more lucrative?

Well, while we're on numbers...

After graduating with honors from the most prestigious journalism school in the south, I worked 40+ hours per week for years, writing and editing the news that the (assumedly) higher-educated among the populace read to remain informed of important community legal, political and healthcare related policies and events. I never made more than $40,000 a year.

A contrast: a "friend"--we shall call her Barbie--not the brightest tool in the shed, but with enough blonde and giggles to compensate--averaged more than $80K a year bringing fellas wings and beer in a skimpy outfit. And that was with some clothes on.


I'm not the first to notice this amazing *ahem* trend. A personal role model, Hedy Lamarr, was acutely aware. The first woman to ever appear nude in a major motion picture (1933), Lamarr was no prude. Nor was she an idiot. More than half a century ago, the Austrian actress said both of the following:

"American men, as a group, seem to be interested in only two things, money and breasts. It seems a very narrow outlook."


"Any girl can be glamorous. All you have to do is stand still and look stupid."

Money, breasts, glamour, stupidity. Sounds like a recipe for a successful franchise...

Oh yeah, and did I forget to mention that Lamarr--in addition to being touted as "the most beautiful woman in Hollywood"--was also the inventor of frequency hopping/spread spectrum technology which served as the precursor to COFDM and Wi-Fi, as well as the CDMA used in cordless and wireless telephones?

Yep. The woman was a genius. And you thought she was just a nice pair of tits with a pretty face...


Ain't none of this new, my friends. Women have long been aware of the power of beauty to bring a man to his knees. And empty his wallet. Which is likely why beautiful women are the envy of women everywhere and plastic surgery is a multi-billion dollar industry. The Marilyn Monroes of the world have been remarking “If you're gonna be two-faced at least make one of them pretty" and "I don't mind living in a man's world, as long as I can be a woman in it” since time began.

But then again let's look at how that philosophy turned out for her.

It's not that I find any harm in heralding physical beauty or female sexuality. I'd go so far as to say I am a proponent of both. It's just the negative repercussions which come about when those things are heralded above all else...

For those of you living under a culture rock, Madonna--highly "do-able" in the 80s and 90s--just performed at the Super Bowl halftime show. And while many media outlets focused on the flash of the middle finger, many others honed in on another *key* aspect: "Sure, Madge looks great for 53, but would you still bone her?"

Don't believe me? Do a Google search. I haven't the time to school you...

Bonable or no, the woman is an icon. She may be batshit crazy, I don't know, but she has a plethora of #1 hits, a few movies (good or no), a few children's books and a few marriages and high-profile affairs under her belt. And all we care about is whether or not 20 and 30-something year old men would still "hit it."

This calls for an eyebrow furrow.


Thing is, beauty ages and fades but intelligence (at least in theory) grows.
What happens to these gorgeous women--psychologically and otherwise--when that beauty fades?

Again, we all want to be one of the beautiful people. And, inherently, there's nothing wrong with that.
I want to be beautiful. I want to be sexy.

Thing is, that's not ALL I want to be.

I want to be smart. I want to be accomplished. I want to be recognized for the power and unique nature of my thoughts and ideas.

But most of all what I want is for those things to matter.

It should matter if a woman's cup size exceeds that of her brain.
And it should matter that a woman, not so gorgeous by societal standards, can hold her own intellectually against any man.

And maybe it does.

Maybe I am just hyper-sensitive to the smell of fake smiles, push up bras, and bright orange shortie shorts.

Maybe that's true.
Maybe we do live in a world that's more gender-equal and balanced.

So how many hotwings you want?

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Apres moi le deluge

Apres moi le deluge.
You can't break that which isn't yours.
I must go on standing...

This is for you, though you will never know it.

You will never see me dancing, disjointed, grotesque, in my head. Beer bottle in one hand, cigarette in the other. Bet receipts swirling about me. Wrists slit and bleeding.

Blackness, but for the spotlight. Piano keys. Ballerinas, dancing in darkness. Tutus, taffeta. The tiara catches the light, falls.

My face.

You will never see it. The death in my eyes. Me, dancing, disjointed, grotesque.

I must go on standing.

Beer bottle in one hand, cigarette in the other. Bet receipts swirling around me. Wrists slit and bleeding.

You can't break that which isn't yours.

This is for you, though you will never know it.

"February. Get ink, shed tears.
Write of it, sob your heart out, sing,
While torrential slush that roars
Burns in the blackness of the spring."