Tag Archives: Amanda Palmer

Unintended Silence

I recently realized it’s been about a month since I last posted here.

I’m not 100% sure why. I have my ideas which range from exhaustion, kids, family drama, election stress, illness and the ever present writer’s block.

Part of my silence started when my husband asked me one night if I always planned on writing depressing or serious posts. I did this “I do not. Sometimes they’re lighthearted…oh wait maybe you’re right”.

And then I suddenly couldn’t come up with anything to write about. My life is serious. It is a series of constant aggravating instances taking place. Though in defense, I’ve never been the happy-go-lucky type to begin with. I was the kid that was happier sitting in their room brooding and writing really bad poetry. How I ended up married to the most laid back person on the planet blows my mind. See in my eyes I’m still a bit of that kid that saw everything through dark glasses rather than rosy.

All the bullshit that has gone on through the years has left me with this feeling that I just need to keep plugging along with this life, though doing what with it I still don’t know. I always wanted to be a writer. And I think I was on a decent roll here for the first few months. Then something in my brain clicked off last month and the idea of writing anything seemed, well, irritating.

I even started NaNoWriMo this month but then quickly remembered how much I dislike the whole idea of it. I don’t like the pressure of it all, which I know is ridiculous considering that real writers do actually have deadlines and have to write a specific word count in order to get their book published. I also dislike heavily the fact that it’s in November. Why November? For those of us with kids, they’re in full swing with homework and activities. And it’s the month of Thanksgiving! I mean I have to plan a thanksgiving dinner for my family, and shop for it and cook it. Right there is a whole week I don’t have time to be staring at my damned computer trying to find the right words to complete a crappy story.

Which gets me to my second to last reason: the fact that nothing you write matters. Only the word count. Really? So someone could just write something about their dog chasing its tail for 50, 000 words and that counts as winning. Just because you completed a word count? Ugh. See I’m anal when it comes to writing a story. If I’m going to write something I’m going to edit it and research it. Which is one of the reasons the first story I started died about 2800 words in. I wanted it to sound good and in order for it to do so meant a bit of research had to be put in, and  I gave up.

And my last reason:

I remembered I don’t like to write fiction. Everything that I’ve tried to write over the years in the way of fiction always bore way too much resemblance to things that had occurred in my own life. And my head just isn’t in the right place right now to use my imagination. It’s a bit too rooted in the past at the moment. I’m still trying to sort some things out.

I then discovered I could write a memoir. This would be considered a “rebel” move according to the rules and folks at NaNoWriMo.

So I started one. Only it was harder to write then I thought it would be. Once I started moving into experiences that I only rarely discuss I began to think that I wouldn’t be able to continue. And this negative attitude really took hold and I became angry with myself. Angry at myself for not wanting to continue, but also angry at the situations that I planned on writing of. Remembering so much made me feel as if most of my life was meaningless. And this became a hard feeling to let go of.

As I was working with these feelings stewing I was watching my husband and one of my best friends write like mad. Every time they announced their word counts the irritation I felt towards myself heightened, and I started to feel it toward their success. My poor husband dealt with some of this the other night when he threw his hands up in the air joyously and yelled out “10, 300 suckers!”. I turned to him and told him to shut the F up. I said it nicely, but there was no mistaking the annoyance. He just sat there with his arms up in the air with his mouth twisted into an “O”. I guess announcing your high word count to someone who has completely stumbled with their writing is not the best thing to do.

I felt bad and apologized. However every time I hear of someone’s word count, as much as I hate this competition, it makes me feel incompetent as a writer. I keep trying to talk myself into picking up the memoir again but that would take a lot of wine to be able to write and I’m currently on the wagon due to having to take antibiotics for a sinus problem. I know, woe is me.

I’ve always been good at self-sabotage when it comes to my writing. In fact, it’s the one thing I seem to excel at.

So I’m going to try and work out my issues with why writing makes me uncomfortable lately.

A shining example is the fact that I wrote most of this yesterday afternoon, didn’t like it, or rather felt it was too negative and revealing of my idiosyncrasies and walked away from it. And now I’m back. Leaving it as it is. In all its negative glory.

I miss writing, don’t get me wrong. I just honestly don’t know what to say anymore without things sounding like I spent a week at the bottom of a cave deprived of food and oxygen.

I do have happy things going on!! I swear! I just generally feel happy is boring to write about. I mean right now my kids are doing well. My youngest is really starting to read and that makes me crazy happy when I see her read books to me. My oldest is doing ok, nothing major to report. Unless you count the poor walls that keep suffering the brunt of his meltdowns. I still worry about him not having friends to hang out with yet. He has friends in school, but nothing has come out of it on the outside.

The last ten days I’ve taken a mini break from the world now that the election is over. I didn’t realize how sensitive I had become to this year’s election. But many of the issues at hand affected me in some very deep ways that I’ve yet to go into here, and I’m still not sure I’m prepared to acknowledge just yet. So it was an emotional time for me. I’m glad it’s over. And the internet is a tiny bit less hostile.

I’m catching up on reading and my DVR, which sounds pathetic I know, but the shows I haven’t watched in a while are keeping me calm at the moment. I needed the break from the real world.

I did get to go see Amanda Palmer last weekend! That was the most amazing night I’ve had in eons. I may write about that one in detail soon. I spent the night at my friend E’s house after the show and that was the first time I was away from the kid overnight where I literally left the house. I mean she’s stayed at her grandparents with zero problems and her dad took her camping one night. But I left the house. They stayed here. That was a new experience. And it was just fine. Though the kid clung to me when I returned the next day.

Oh, but back to the AP show, the next day when trying to describe it to J I turned to him and said “you have NEVER seen me like this at a concert. NEVER”. Now we’ve been to a million shows together, he’s a musician so they’ve either been his bands or just big shows we’ve gone to and let loose at. We’re big music geeks in case I haven’t established this before. I mean I can’t even name/count all the shows I’ve seen over the years. It’s that many.

This was hands down one of the best I’ve ever seen. So the little I could explain was that I was 16 again that night. I felt 16, mainly in the way that her new album takes me back musically to that time, and I danced like I was 16. This all amused J.

I will say I felt a rush after the show, well that and when she crowd surfed she ended up two people in front of me before being pulled the other direction, so it was kind of exhilarating to have someone whose music you adore be practically in your face for a second. Granted the next day I was sicker then I was before I went in there. And here I thought the vodka I was drinking that night would cure my cold. Nope.

I still need some time to get my brain back in gear. I’m hoping once I get over this sickness and the hearing starts to come back in my right ear(sinus related) the buzzing will go away and make it easier for me to gather my thoughts. And maybe I’ll have something to write about.

Don’t give up on me just yet…that’s all I ask.


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Quiet Time

That seems to be the condition my brain is operating in. I feel like I have a lot I could write about and at the same time, so little.

Life has been pretty boring lately. At least boring to the general blog public I would assume.

There have been health issues(yeah, big surprise), kid issues, car issues, house issues, school…The list could go on. It’s basically been the usual list of suspects that happen when you own a house, raise two kids and deal with an illness that frequently likes to mess with you.

There is one very big, one very awesome thing going on right now but it’s a bit of a secret. I’m fearful that if I say anything before everything is finalized it won’t happen. So I’m just going to be super happy but terrified for the next three weeks until I get the ok not to be worried.

I could just try to list everything in brief that was my semi-exciting and annoying week that was the last one:

-The heat was a horrendous bitch on Labor Day and I almost passed out at the local fair. Yeah that was fun. My MS then decided to be horrendous for most of the week after that. Add some weird stomach problem where the idea of food made me angry for three days and a mild sore throat. Last week was a blast I tell you.

-The kid’s meds were briefly adjusted for a few days. I say briefly because the intention was there to lower one of them finally but the reaction we had was fairly immediate and extremely frightening and the Dr put him back to the regular dosage. I won’t go into major details but I almost called the cops on the kid and he whipped me in the face with a pair of his underwear. Thankfully they were clean. And all is well now by the way, the Dr. apologized to me for not mentioning there would be a reaction that quickly. ugh.

-I was dealing with some depression issues that stemmed from being sick so much this past few months. It hit me really hard last week and the idea of doing anything but sitting on the couch with a book or at the computer really didn’t interest me. I wasn’t myself and it was really disconcerting. This happens from time to time and I know it mostly kicks in hard when there have been flares from the MS. The depression and flares seem to go hand in hand.

-I keep have qualms about taking the burlesque classes. With everything that’s gone on physically I’m scared silly now about putting myself out there and looking like a total idiot. Though one of the local performers who’s really awesome has been talking with me a bit here and there via message and she’s had a lot of encouraging words in general(that and she read my blog and liked the pets piece). And just knowing that she’s been taking the time to be super awesome friendly with me has just made me crazy happy. I guess sometimes in this world when everyone is often so self-involved, when someone just happens to be really down-to-earth and nice it throws you off. In a good way.

– The election season is just making me boil. I want to leave the country for the next couple months and just bury my head in the sand until it’s over and the outrage(from whichever party lost) settles down. I feel like this country is more divided than ever. Family member against family member, friend against friend. And it sucks. Sorry I can’t come up with a more eloquent word to describe it, that’s really the only thing that pops into my head.

-Amy Poehler & Will Arnett split up. WTF?? I know I shouldn’t be disappointed in a celeb marriage breaking up. But they’re both so freaking awesome(though I’m a huge Amy fan, so I like her a bit more than Will) and so cute together and they’re just hilarious. And it just seems so wrong. Which apparently is the reason why so many news outlets and entertainment sites echoed the same thoughts as mine for the last few days. They’re just too cool together to split up. Fuck. If those two crazy kids can’t make it, who can?

-We went to Michigan for the weekend to see some old friends. Very good friends that we never get to see anymore. And being with them just made my day/weekend/life. I didn’t realize just how much I missed having them around until we were together. Saturday night was much-needed. My favorite part was seeing Josh reunite on (a) stage with Derek. They’ve always been so amazing together and I miss seeing them play since Derek & family have been in Portland. I also forget how much I love seeing Josh play. I don’t get to see his new band play that much due to their inability to schedule a show on a weekend, and my inability to get a babysitter.

My favorite part of that night was late night when everyone(including friends of our friends that I’d never met) hung out around the fire pit and J & D sat there with guitars in hand and sang. It was just splendid and warmed the cockles of my heart.

Es has a best friend in H, our friends son. The two of them just adored each other at first glance. They played a bit when they were toddlers before our friends moved to Michigan. The two of them were attached at the hip for the next 20 hrs. And it dawned on Josh and I the next day in the car ride home that we’ve never seen Es with another kid for so long and not fight/argue even ONCE. Blew our mind.

This weekend made me miss the days before the others moved away from here. I’m just happy we had a chance to really reconnect and decided to make more of an effort in getting together from here on out.

– Es started karate lessons, lessons she won in a raffle at the labor day fair we went to. Hilarious part is that they’re taken in the same building as the gymnastics company that she won free lessons from in the raffle last year on Labor Day. Kid has some insane luck I tell you. She took to it quite well. First one was a private session with one of the company owners to see how she liked it. She took to it really well. Es needs some major help with focusing and body coordination so watching her take to this and actually learn something immediately thrilled me. She also was told to stomp on a board and when she did she broke it in half which stunned and excited her. The woman never told her she might do that. Tonight she ran around yelling “Hiii YA”

-One of my proudest parenting moments occurred the other day when C informed me he’s positively addicted to Dr. Who now. I made him watch an episode the night before because I was sick of him watching One Tree Hill and Smallville reruns on Netflix. That afternoon while I was gone he watched three more and said he can’t stop. Nice. Makes mama proud.

-I discovered Tumblr. I knew it existed, another blogger told me I should try it, so I did. Damnit. This is going to suck up a lot of my life I can feel it. And then I showed my friend Erin. Now she’s mad at me because she too senses this is going to be one hell of a time suck. Oops, sorry.

-Aside from my stupid birthday coming up at the end of the month(I’m pretending that I’m no longer aging) there are two great events coming up in the next two months. One is our anniversary in October. We’re going to another burlesque show and then staying in the city. I’m psyched. We did this last year and decided it should become a tradition.

-The other is I’m taking Erin to see Amanda Palmer in November. I’m excited. I have these crazy mixed feelings about her methods sometimes in her self-promotion, but in the end I love her dedication to the arts, and how free she is to be who she is. She doesn’t give a damn what people think, which is rare in the music business. Also she really does love her fans. She’s also out there with her creativity in a way that can at times be extremely moving, but also frightening. The latter is her new video for her new song “The Killing Type”. In one instance it’s very intense and moving, the other bloody and grotesque. But you can not help but watch it again and again. The lyrics are why. Anyways, it’s my first time seeing her and I just hope it’s everything I think it will be.

Her new album came out yesterday and I was so incredibly shocked with how much I loved it. I know this sounds positively bizarre seeing that I claim myself as a fan. The thing is I love her music but not all the time, there’s never been one album she’s done that I’ve loved the whole damn thing. I’ve never been emotionally struck down by her music as I’d been with this one. Half of it was just so moving and depressing, the other half brought me back to my days of being 16 and dancing at Medusa’s club in Chicago and trolling Belmont with all the other kids like me. I was a bit of a Goth/punk rock kid.  The music she created on this album takes so many amazing elements of the new wave/ punk music that was out during that time, therefore there are songs that instantly transport me back to 16(mid 80’s, let’s leave it at that).

I haven’t stopped playing it the last 24 hrs. It’s been a long time since I’ve done that with an album. A VERY long time. So this makes me more excited for her show coming up, I should probably warn my friend that I may revert to 16 yr old me when she plays a few of these songs. This album makes me just positively love her now instead of having these love/hate feelings.

I also found myself somehow embroiled in a big argument online today over a very incorrect article that has been printed over and over today over how she’s treating musicians on her tour. It’s amazing how much can be so erroneous and misunderstood by so many so quickly. This is one reason I hate the internet. Also the fact that my twitter blew up for two hours as some(including one in her camp) agreed with me and others kept going around and around in a circle.

Today made me miss writing about music. Something I used to love to do but somehow lost my passion for several years back. Today made me think it might be time to start writing about it again, and if I weren’t so tired I’d irritate some more people on the internet and go into detail over this whole debacle.

-I might be taking a break from writing for a week. There are so many things coming up that are going to be taking up my time around here that I need to concentrate on, and I don’t think I need to bore everyone with the details of the cleaning out of our garage.

Until then…

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