Monday, January 31


Disgusting. The air felt toxic. The people looked toxic; crazed really. I felt like I had stepped into a cult of the already initiated, and so enmeshed they were in their common belief that what they were doing was right. What they were doing was good, that they had lost sight of reality: they were surrounded by germs.

The air was resplendent in them. It smelled the way it might if I piled 12 un-showered teenage boys, fresh from soccer practice, into my little Honda Fit. In the middle of summer. During a heatwave. While I sit in steamy air, in the drivers seat wearing all of their 24 socks tied around my neck. I tried not to breathe. Anxiety rose in me, and a little tiny voice of common sense and reason-that I have long since become accustomed to ignoring-telling me to: GET OUT. GET OUT NOW.

Having only seen the worn and glistening wooden floors, and soft cozy lighting of other studios, I looked down at the indoor/outdoor carpeting that covered the entry, changing areas and cubby spaces. And gasp! Horror of all horrors! When I opened the door to the practice room, I saw that the carpet flowed into that space as well. I trodded into the room in my bare feet. The floor felt sticky.

I found a spot for my mat, and before unrolling it seriously considered writing off the 16$ I had just paid as a relatively cheap lesson in common sense. Instead I stayed, and sweated, and tried not to think about what lived in the fake fibers of the furry thing underneath me-and now in between each of my poor, once pure toes. I Warriored and Scorpioned with the rest of them, doing my best never to touch the floor with my hands, while I watched in the cracked mirror on the wall, the rivulets of sweat pouring off the man in front of me, onto his towel, off his mat and into the floor.

And when I left, still wearing my soaking wet clothes and carrying my mat- which I would sanitize when I got home for the first time ever- I felt great, and I knew I would never, EVER, go back.

Sunday, January 30

For T.

Since we never had one of the talks you wanted to have because you said: “we need to” or, “I want you to know how I feel”, and you never sent the letter you said you wanted to write, I have only confusion. I feel adrift in space, bouncing off the moon, hitting the sun and ricocheting off stars as I try not to fall towards the space at the bottom where you will send me flying again.

I can not make sense of your love that turned to indifference so quickly. I make myself crazy trying to figure it out, even as I see that whether I understand it or not it will still be the same. And realizing this is like buckshot that shatters my heart, my ego and my hope with that one blast. Realizing that you don’t want me- no matter how much you keep telling me you do- is a hard thing.

You texted me again last night. The words “I love you” lit up my screen, and for a moment my heart. These voiceless displays of your affection that were once your arms around me are familiar now, and though once I would feel the ache that I was soaked in drain from my body-I know better now. I know those finger taps are some misfiring synapse between your brain and your heart and having reached into that steely-toothed jaw inside you so many times before, I have gnawed my hands bloody trying to free myself; only to reach in again.

It is so easy to wrap my love around you, and so hard for me to stay angry, which keeps me sliding back into your black hole gravity. I know by now though, that although you may point your confused love at me, it is my finger on the trigger. Every time I read those words and I believe you I injure myself, and each time my heart becomes smaller and less recognizable. Each time I become smaller and less recognizable. We’ve played this game before and it has no winner. Just a slow pecking away at everything that once made us real to each other.

My phone dings again and I see the words: “I miss you . . . do you love me?”, and instead of telling you that I miss you too-which I do like a cut that will not heal-I tap back on the screen: the thing about missing people is that there’s an easy cure.

We both know you live only a five minute walk away although I think I’m the only one who understands this.

You ask: what is that?

I answer: that’s like asking what the cure for hunger is.

You say: I get it . . . but you don’t do anything about it.

* * *

I want to remember us that day at your mothers. The day at the beach when I took your dog (OUR dog, you corrected me) for a long walk to give you some peace because I knew her energy was hard for you. You stood in her living room and as I crossed the room to you, you looked at me and said, yes . . . whatever it is, yes. I want to remember you that day - the way you looked at me. You still saw me as perfect.

Instead I try to remember you as you were the last time I saw you. Our bodies with each other only the night before, I could not understand your coldness and reached out and touched you asking why, trying to grasp what was not comprehendible, and when you said to me: leave Deb, just fucking leave . . . just go, I finally did, with a new resolve and anger towards you I had never felt before, which would melt away in days under the heat of my love for you.

I want to remember you the way you were that last night I saw you, but instead, all I can think of is you, the way you were that day, leaning against your mothers wall.

Friday, January 28

Fourteen year quilt

So this is the most creative thing I've done lately. I started this quilt about 14 years ago-not kidding. I have made several other quilts since then, but I would always pull this one out, work on it for a while, then put it away again. Finally I made a decision a couple months back that I would finish it and so did. It is an original design I made, using several steps in process.

First I sketched my idea on a piece of paper, then gridded it off. Then I took freezer paper (has wax on one side) and taped enough pieces together to create a full size pattern which I then gridded off to same number of grids as original drawing, and then the fun began of transferring the drawing to large scale. Entire quilt, measures about 62" square, and was pieced together with around 700 pieces (I haven't counted but it's a guesstimate) , sewn into 144 squares, which were then sewn into one piece.

It was a pretty intensive project as there were a lot of pieces to keep track of, and so every single piece, no matter how small, was given a number and letter and color to designate it's position in the quilt. As in: 1aB meant: row 1, piece a which would be sewn to piece B and so on, in a shade of blue. After the design was transferred onto the freezer paper, then the entire pattern was cut into pieces, and then each piece was ironed onto the appropriate fabric using a warm iron (wax allows the pattern piece to adhere to the fabric but peels off very easily without leaving any residue.

Section of quilt. You can see the squares the quilt was assembled with. An attempt was made to keep the design flowing from square to square, but different fabric stretches differently and I wasn't always completely successful. Whatever! I wasn't completing in a competition and so cut myself some slack!

Detail of quilting stitches. Entire quilt was machine quilted.

Another detail of quilt stitching. Voila! Piece of cake!

Thursday, January 27

Monday, January 24

Sunday, January 23


Something happened yesterday and I'm not gonna write about it. It's hard for me to write about emotional things without having time to process them. Kind of weed away the pain a bit. I don't have the same problem if I am just irritated-that can flow baby!-and writing helps to relieve the pressure and lighten my own mood. But when it's something sad, I need some time to distance myself.

I still can not quite come to terms with what some people do. I'm talking about adults. No offense to anyone under 29 out there, but kiddies are just natural born, self-centered little creatures. You expect them to act like self-aborbed, out of control, hurtful asses. But when you are dealing with an adult and they seem to be missing that little dam that lives in most peoples brains, that tends to be moderately effective at keeping their feelings from raging down the river, and becoming really destructive behavior (phew that's a long sentence and I'm not even done), it's another thing all together. Mix in little ol' -pure and innocent-trying -to -be- a -better- person-me . . . and I'm gonna get wiped out by the water.

So this thing happened last night . . . again. And I should just let it roll off my back like the greasy, toxic poison that it is, but my pores are too big and I soak it in like a sponge, and then spend the night, and the next day, and maybe even the next, waiting to dry. I leave a lot of water behind me on the floor.

Friday, January 21

Bitter goo

So first, I just want to thank everyone for reading my blog. I was gone for a long time and just knowing everyone is still out there is comforting. Also, there are some new readers and I am very grateful for you as well. So there. That is the touching segment of this evenings show.

So I guess you saw the picture on the left? I wish I were that pale but sadly, that is just photo editing-but that's not really the point. You might be thinking: "cool". She super-imposed that nifty saying onto her back. I wonder if she used Photoshop. . .? Truth is though, that those words are printed in my back with ink.

I got this tatoo about two years ago (I think this is the first time my father Dennis has ever seen it. Surprise!) A long time collector of teabag wisdom-the words more inspiring to me than those of the bible-I found these words when I first began the crazy journey I've been on these last two years. I found them at at a time when it would have been easy to judge and walk away from someone's sad, decrepit life, (which would have saved me a lot of grief, but been a lesson lost). I don't know-I guess I was trying to turn over a new leaf. You know, care about people more (so much easier just caring about myself). I'm not exaggerating when I say that getting this tatoo changed me as a person. Of course I realize that the real change came when I decided to try and be a nicer person, but something about being branded with that commitment to this new philosophy . . . it made it stick.

I have been asked before why I got it on my back? If I got it to change myself then shouldn't I have gotten it somewhere where I could see it everyday? All I know is that I am acutely aware of it's presence. That little subconscious jolt has shocked me back out of anger and filled me with peace and love more than once. If anything, at times I sometimes have wished it away because as long as it is on my back I have to walk the talk and sometimes, like now, it's just hard. When people are mean and cold it is easier- and honestly more satisfying in a way- to be mean back. Just let your shit hang out and give it to em! But I just don't like the icky way that makes me feel anymore. Slimy; all covered in bitter goo.

I think all my anger just leaks out through these words and I like that. I can't hold a grudge anymore and it's good. Like an unbearable lightness of being thing, (I don't know if that actually applies but it sounds good). Right now I feel a little sad and despondent. My heart is broken a little. It sucks when things don't work out like you wish they would have. But as much as things have hurt I still try and remember the good and not the bad and still feel love and compassion for these people who have hurt me. I believe that they only do the things they do because they were hurt really badly once too. But that won't stop me from writing about them . . . (kindly of course).

Thursday, January 20


I don't make stuff up. That doesn't mean I don't creatively embellish (as in: he was like 6 feet tall and wore a red dress (maybe he was 5'10" and it was a red kimono), but any license I take is to paint a more visual or lucid picture. Still, I never just make anything up, and I never say something just to make myself look better-at the expense of making someone else look worse; which is why this really annoys me.

I work with this guy. It's just me and him in the kitchen, which is a recipe for getting on each others nerves. He is contrary. Just one of those people who loves to say the opposite-just to say the opposite. I know that type of person well-I am/was/attempt not to be-one of those people. It was when I first started this job (and worked with another guy whose nerves we got each other on (? WT . . . ). He was also contrary and working with him made me realize how annoying it was-and I vowed to try and reign myself in.

One morning this first guy came to work and told me this story: he was at a soccer game for his kids, hanging out and talking with all the other moms, and finally one of them turned to him and said:

"You like to be contrary don't you? It's annoying."

After he told me this, he just said to me-"it's know it's true, and I really don't like the way it sounded hearing someone say it" (or something like that ... my audiographic memory is weak on the exact verbiage). We were the same age.

Fast forward about 18 months, and several kitchen co-workers later (we have gone through about 35 employees throughout the store in the 20 months I've been there-but that's another story-many stories-woo hoo!) and here I am with this guy. This guy who, up until recently, I would have described to most people as a nice guy, but who increasingly gets on every last nerve I have.

So today I am saying something about these guys I dated in the past -(I try really hard not to speak about my personal life with him anymore, so I give him less opportunity to piss me off)- but sometimes I slip. So I say something about these guys I've been with in the last 2 years since I've moved to Maine as all being messed up, and he laughs; snickers really.

"What's so funny?" I say.
"You call everyone that-you think everyone's like that", he says.
"Well, that's because the guys I've dated since moving to Maine have been" I say.

I am already annoyed because:

One, I was stupid enough to set myself up, and two, because he has either:

a. not been listening to the things I've told him.
b. thinks I make all this stuff up.
c. disregards what I say because of the genitals I have between my legs.
d. is really just a jerk deep down and I gotta stop saying he's a nice guy.

You see the thing is, this is some of what I've told him . . .

Guy no. 1 was a compulsive liar. Shortly after we got involved with one another he had my name tatooed on his arm. He called me from the chair to say he was having it done. I really didn't think it was a good idea but hey, it's his arm. He later told my brother that I "was there with him when he got it done. Sitting in the chair, right next to him" (um . . . he did realize that me and my brother know each other right?). He later told the other woman he was seeing that, "he was drunk when he got it and was going to have it removed" (another story about how I find out these things).

Guy no. 2 was the Iphone dude, who as you may remember, I would find out was secretly bisexual and told me that the reason he had been unable to commit to me was that he thought when he had found the "right woman" his "disgusting" desire for men would go away and he would know he had found "the one". Since his tasty desires hadn't gone away, well ... He also didn't invite me to a Christmas Eve party because, there was a woman who would be there with whom he had a: "plantonic but very flirtatious relationship with", and he thought it would make me uncomfortable (how thoughtful of him).

Guy no. 3 was a guy who refused to ever give his dog water; and got angry when I did. He drank (the guy, not the dog) anywhere from 18-24 beers a day and gave me a lecture once on what defined "water" for his dog. I was not to let his dog drink from the toilet, from a five gallon bucket, from a lake, or from a puddle. Also, when I asked him those question we ask eachother: have either of us been married, had kids, etc. His answer was no. Turns out he was married and separated, had a 4 year old he never saw from a previous relationship, and, oh yeah, and the girl he was seeing before me . . . was five months pregnant.

Guy no. 4. is/was a guy (I am still withdrawing from this relationship) who also drank heavily. 12-18 beers a day and at 43 still does acid, ecstasy and nitrous oxide on a relatively regular (in relation to what most people might think of as normal or regular) basis. It's hard to describe the fear and timidity he instilled in me. I was not physically afraid, but emotionally afraid. He is generally a very gentle person, but would become very defensive and agitated at the strangest things. Life with him was a competition between the two of us and I just don't need to be a winner, or be with someone who needs to be. He once offered to be the designated driver when we went to see a show. I was tired, but he really wanted me to go and so made the offer. I was touched and grateful. After he downed a couple beers when we got there (okay fine, as long as he doesn't drink more) we were on the floor. I reached out to touch his face-he was drenched in sweat. I knew what that meant.

"You're on X", I said.
"I only took one." (he's saying this in his: baybeee it's not a big deal, come on sweetie-pie way he has).
"But you agreed to drive", I said.
"I'm fiiiiine", he crooned to me. "I just had one".

I wish that these details were "it"-you know? That other than all this craziness, all these relationships were awesome! But they are just little tiny details of really big fuckedupedness (I love it when I make up words). Which brings me back to the guy-this 23 year old guy that still has soooooooooooooo much to learn about life and relationships and people.

A, B, C or D?

I think all of the above.

Wednesday, January 19

In The Dark

This is a short story I wrote in college. One of several that I never quite finished - meaning, get to where I want it to be, or where it needs to be. But I've always liked it, and so here it is-in all it's unpolished glory.

In The Dark

Nothing grew. Every tree we planted, every seed pushed into the ground, every blade of grass we coaxed to the surface with water and sweat and torn skin withered when it touched the sun; it was as if we’d purchased death.
We saw the house the day we buried your mother. Afterwards you said you needed to drive, and so we drove to the beach and stood on rocks with salt water spraying our feet and when you told me you could’t have gone through this alone, I knew alone meant: without me. We drove back that night and first saw the house in the dark. The “for sale” sign hanging from the lamp post creaked in the quiet wind, while we walked on the porch peering into empty rooms, seeing our furniture and record collections in those spaces. We held hands and imagined our bare feet under blankets in bed, finding each other.
We took a mortgage from the bank, and our stereo and record collection to the living room and put our bed in a downstairs room instead of up, because you said you wanted to be closer to the sand. Every morning you opened the outer doors to our room and stood in the sun, the cool air growing bumps on your skin as I pulled the blankets to my chin and watched you. The floorboards creaked and I always knew when you woke in the night to find the bathroom, or water, or to smoke. I watched as your cigarette floated up and down like a red firefly, lighting your face as you inhaled and then as you exhaled, I watched as you slowly faded away.
We scrubbed old wooden door frames and polished tarnished brass fixtures and planted the garden. When it didn’t grow we said the soil needed work and we’d try again next year. We made shelves for our books, and put hooks under the cupboards next to the sink for our cups, and we bought a new blender. On Sundays in summer we played music and sat on chairs under the umbrella, its’ ruffled edge hiding us from the sun. We chose books from the shelves to read and you paused every few pages to put your head back on your chair and quietly look at me, and after a while I stopped asking why.
When I was sick in September you made me your mother’s soup. You rubbed my back and brought me tea and blankets to ease my chill. Too sick to sleep and too tired to see you read to me stories by Hempel and Carver and asked: wouldn’t I like something a little more upbeat? I fell asleep to the harshness of your voice, and the sound of living.
When the weather turned cold we folded away the umbrella. You wrapped it in an old sheet to keep the dust away and put it in the shed until next year. In winter you shoveled prairies of snow from the roof and paths to our chairs and then shoveled those too. On Sunday mornings we wrapped robes and blankets around our shoulders, and sat on frozen chairs eating toast with jelly and drinking coffee cooled too quickly by the cold air, while waves crashed against the break.
In March you went to bed and I rubbed your back. I made your mother’s chicken soup and wrote the recipe down to have for later; when you were gone. I shoveled wet, sun-warmed snow from soggy walks and scraped the ice from the windows of our car. I mixed our records together and crossed out names. No longer mine and yours, now ours.
In June I took the summer things back out alone. Brushing away cobwebs gathered over winter, I unwrapped your work. I set it on the patio where for a day it stood folded in the sun, it’s wooden arms tucked safely into it’s sides, until I could see enough to open.

Tuesday, January 18


From the first moment we were physically near one another, it was like I had found that thing to fill the empty space beside me-a space I didn't even realize was there. Standing near him, barely minutes after we met, walking by his side, had the comfort of a deep hug. I quickly fell into sublimely comforting love.

He suffers from paranoia. I think he realizes this to a degree, but not enough to really do anything about it. To expect someone who thinks everyone around him is messed up and out to get him, to look that deeply inside and be able to see that they are really the one who needs help, is probably asking too much. But he has this heart. This sweet, tender, so giving heart, and an innocent, child-like quality that just wounds me in it's sincerity. But there is everything else. Between his alcoholism, paranoia and extreme (bizarre) defensiveness over the most unexpected things (he once told me he was more grown up than me because he lived in a house with a dog, and I only lived in an apartment with a cat), I felt sometimes like I was barely holding onto my own mind. And I could feel myself growing ever smaller as a person.

The last time I saw him he told me he didn't trust me. Basically that he thought I would turn on him and try to harm him in some way. He didn't want me in his house anymore when he wasn't there and one day he changed the locks on his doors. I can't say more about the last conversation we had that day, because it would be betraying a trust and there are a few lines I won't cross. I just know that with all the insanity up until that moment, that he finally did something I could not live with; he didn't trust me. I became one of "them" to him. Someone out to get him. And it was like in one of those movies (I think I've used this analogy before) where someone is standing and the camera shot pushes the back wall so far back that you can't reach it anymore, even though no one moved. And that's what happened in the car that day as we rode back to his house and I got in my car and drove away. Two feet away from each other, we couldn't even touch.

I texted him tonight because I have something at his house I need to get, and because deep down (not deep enough yet) I still crave any opportunity for contact. And so I asked him if he would be home Saturday so I could get my thing and he said he didn't know, but would leave the key. He would leave the key. "Why?" I asked. "Why now?", even though I think I already understood. "Just do it, okay", he wrote back. And because I believe there was so much more that he wanted to say but couldn't, when I closed the text I cried.

Monday, January 17

Men seeking men

Mike left his Ipod touch in my couch. It must have fallen from his pocket that day he sat there shortly after we had broken up. Having shown little to no interest in our relationship till then, now that I was finally saying: "aannnnnd cut!", he suddenly wanted more. Outside the door to my apartment, on the carpet in the hall, he dropped to his knees and looked up at me: "Take me back," he said. "This doesn't feel right". I reached down and put my hands around his confused, little face. "Call me in a month if you still feel that way" I said, and shut the door.

I met Mike in a bar. I was hanging and chilling listening to the band that it turns out he was playing in. When he walked by my table he immediately caught my eye in that way that makes me go, Oh! and catch my breath a little. Outside later he seemed to be waiting for me and after we talked for a while, without my asking, he wrote down his name and number and asked me to call sometime. Two days later, when I made the first call, would be the beginning of a pathetic effort of mine to make the connection that he had initiated. Finally, after a few efforts and being blown off, I said "nay" to the game and went about my business. A few days later, like the miracle of the face of Jesus on a piece of toast he called; on his big boy own. He wanted to get together; oh lucky me! Dreams can come true.

So to make a very long story short, and save enough material for my next one, I met him and his-taped-together-with-blue-painters-tape-headphones downtown, and continued our game of cat and mouse. So eventually (yada, yada, yada) I realized that I was wasting my time, which brings us back to Mike in the hall on his knees and the discovery of his Ipod touch in my couch.

After calling him and telling him I had found his little pod, I set it on the table next to my bed and went about my business. A couple of hours later, lounging in my bed, I looked over at it and thought I'd check out his tunes. He had freely let me listen to it before so it didn't seem invasive to me at all, besides, everyone I know-including myself-freely shares their ipods with others. It seemed like an okay thing to do. Ipod touches are a little different from regular Ipods though, because they can access the internet. And so it was with the great big blank canvas of my mind, that I powered it up and found myself staring at a CraigsList ad. A personal ad; men looking for men. It took me a while to register this and then of course I started to pry (that's right: pry, not cry). I had been dating and sleeping with this man for a couple months now and felt like I kinda had a reason to know. I pulled up the history of the other sites he had recently visited on the net. I guess I was hopeing my original discovery was some freak anomally, but instead what I saw was page after page of men seeking men ads. I was a tad stunned.

Later when I brought his Ipod back to him I asked him: "hey uh, you don't have to answer this but . . . what's up with all the dudes?" He only paused for a second before he answered.

Saturday, January 15

Hello, I'm back.

Don't know if anyone is out there. Things are a little different now and I'm not sure exactly where I'm going to go with this, but somewhere. These last two years have been a ride, and a lot of it a pretty freaky one. I'm not making pots right now and thought about starting a new blog altogether, but I thought-hey-I've already got this one and so might as well carry on. I've got so much shit to write about you can not even believe. It's gonna blow your mind. If I had been writing all along, maybe it wouldn't have blown mine so much. This won't be for the faint of heart. I'm just gonna write real cause when I don't, I'm not real, and that just sucks. That's it for now. There's a lot swirling in my head right now and I'll let it out in a bit. See ya :)