Monday, December 29, 2008

Because I Like to Reflect

A Year End Survey I stole from Jess D.B.


1. Was this a good year for you?
It started out like a dream, got rockier in the springtime, summer was bipolar, and fall was a bit melancholic.

2. What did you do this year that you'd never done before?
Worked in Marketing. Worked in an office. Joined a gym and started going regularly. Made a normal person amount of money (briefly). Went to Vermont. Went to Myrtle Beach. Got a color tattoo. Visited my brother in Michigan.

3. Did you keep your New Years' resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
I don't do these things.

4. What was your favorite moment of the year?
I'm sure something very small and very private. All my trips to New York were pretty fabulous, too. And all the beaches. And Wolf Parade when they played "I'll Believe in Anything" and so many of my favorite people were next to me.

5. What was your least favorite moment of the year?
1. When my agent said she wouldn't represent my newest novel no matter what I did to it. 2. Coming home to find my apartment robbed and my computer (among other things) stolen. 3. Having my cold sore migrate to my throat and having the Walk In Doctor tell me it was genital herpes (which it wasn't), and being in some of the worst pain I've ever experienced in bed for days with the wrong drugs on narcotic pain killers, then the subsequent eye-infection, all before I had any insurance.

6. What would you like to have next year that you lacked this year?
A book published.

7. What date from this year will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
Halloween was fun. One of those great epic nights. I was a dead Japanese school girl from Battle Royale.


8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?
I finished a draft of a novel and came (I feel) a really long way as a poet.

9. What was your biggest failure?
Not getting anything published.

10. Did you suffer illness or injury?
See 5:3

11. Whose behavior merited celebration?
All of my friends are wonderful in their own psychotic ways.

12. Did you break up with anyone this year?
No, believe it or not.

13. Did you make any new friends this year?
Tara, Greg, Constantine, Stephanie (Jen? Amanda? I forget when I met them)


14. Did you travel outside of the U.S. this year?
Sadly, no. This does not make me the happiest.

15. How many different states did you travel to this year?
Like 9 or 10.

16. Did you lose anybody close to you this year?
No, all still hanging around.

17. Did you miss anybody in the past year?
I miss my family a lot. And a few other people.

18. What was your favorite movie you saw this year?
Probably I'm Not There. I had the most fun at that one.

19. What was your favorite song?
"Hold On" by Tom Waits, "Slow Show," by the National, "I'll Believe in Anything" by Wolf Parade

20. What was your favorite album?
Probably one of the above.

21. Favorite TV show?
Arrested Development. So I'm slow on the uptake. I haven't had TV in like eight years.

22. What was the best book you read?
Infinite Jest. I was halfway through when DFWRIP hanged himself.

23. How many concerts did you see this year?
Like, a whole, whole lot.

24. What was the funniest moment of this year?
The hardest I laughed was probably when I was puking into a clear plastic bag on a sparsely peopled subway car at 2am in NYC next to a college kid I'd spoken to before like once who just got a fifty dollar ticket for having his feet up on the seats. It was that Kafkaesque humor.

25. What did you want and get?
Friends, Love, Fun

26. What's one thing you wish had happened this year?
That someone had picked up my first book.

27. Did you do anything you are ashamed of this year?
I got way too drunk several times and made people deal with stupid bullshit.

28. How much money did you spend this year?
Is there any answer but "too much?"

29. Where did most of your money go?
rent, booze, fun, clothes, food, tattoos

30. What was the best thing you bought?
Nice boots.

31. What was your most embarrassing moment of the year?
Realizing that my dreams weren't coming true yet.

32. If you could go back in time to any moment of this year, what would it be?
One of the best times of my life was last winter when I barely had to work and had just met all my friends and realized I was in love with an awesome guy and had representation for my novel and was doing for the first time in my life everything I wanted. I really cannot think of a time I was overall happier.

33. What did you get really, really, really excited about?
Things happening with writing, all my new friends and my boyfriend. Visiting my family and going to Cape Cod. Lots of other little things.

35. Compared to this time last year, are you...

-happier or sadder? unfortunately, I guess sadder

-thinner or fatter? Hard to say. I guess thinner but I also have a lot more muscle. I'm definitely "fitter." (Yoga!)

-richer or poorer? Poorer

36. What do you wish you'd done more of?

Played more guitar. I'd say written more but I always think I should write more.

37. What do you wish you'd done less of?
Cry. Feel sorry for myself. Waste time on the internet.

38. How will you be spending New Years?
Dave and Mike are DJing a party in South Boston.

39. Did you fall in love this year?
Thereabouts.

40. How many one-night stands?
None. I'm antipoly. I had a few one-night stands with bottles, though. Take that how you will.

41. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
I turned 26, and a bunch of us went to Deep Ellum and then sang karaoke at DoReMi. It was rockin.

42. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
Seeing more of my brother. Having roommates who cleaned up once in a while.

43. How would you describe your personal fashion concept this year?
It's hilarious that people exist who find me attractive.

44. What kept you sane?
My friends. Derek. My long distance family. Whiskey. Excercise and yoga. Quentin Tarentino movies. Cupcakes and ice cream and egg and cheese sandwiches and Burdick's hot chocolate and homemade pizza and Ritter bars and anything Alana or Mandy made.

45. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?
I probably thought the most about Barack Obama and David Foster Wallace. Some musicians, too. Got really into Tom Waits. Jack White is always there. And of course, Naked Scarlett Johansson. For some reason, though, I kind of wish the answer to this was Tyra Banks.

46. Who was the best new person you met?
Tara, Greg, Constantine, Stephanie (Jen? Amanda? I forget when I met them)


47. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned this year.
People really will steal stuff that actually belongs to you.

48. What are your plans for the next year?
Find a way to support myself that doesn't make me want to sever veins. Keep on with the art stuff.

49. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year.
"I'm dyin for some action. I'm sick of sittin round here tryin'a write this book." (Springsteen)

Of Beards and Brides

Caleb's Beard Party Website is up. Tony, Derek, and I are featured in the images!

My Friday night flight was cancelled, so I got two extra days in Indiana and got to go to my best friend from high school Amber's wedding shower, give her inappropriate lingerie in front of her family, make them ObamaPomatinis, and sit next to an eighty-year-old former nudist named Bonnie in a red fur-brimmed hat. It's so completely not hip or scene how excited I am that I get to be a bridesmaid, but hey, what can you do.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Fake Empire

My flight got canceled and I was all alone in Indiana, so I decided to figure out Garage Band. This is my "version" of Fake Empire by the National.

PS. I know I'm not a musician, but it's fun to pretend.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

After an all-day adventure getting out of snowy Boston, I made it back to Indy in one piece. My brother is here. This makes me happy. That is all.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

buy my shit

I never like to post more than 1X per day, but by the way...

You can now buy my Art Saves v2.0 and Ladies Room Limerick stickers at Horror Business in Allston. May be easier than running after me as I drunkenly lurch away after a poetry reading, plus you can pick up a hot dress or some local music at the same time.

Here's what they look like:


Written by me, designed by Caleb Cole.
One of the modeling sites I'm a member of gave me a free subscription to Elle. I leafed through while taking a break from wrapping presents last night, and realized when I put it down I suddenly felt fat and hideous. I'm so self critical and self conscious, this is one reason why I've eschewed anything media-image-oriented in the past few years, going so far as to get rid of my TV, not reading ads, and even avoiding living with mirrors. When photographers send me pics of myself, my first reaction is usually, "Oh god, I look fucking awful!" no matter what.

I need to find a job where I'm not focused on how I look. I have a ton more confidence regarding my mental abilities than my physical appearance.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Researching presses where I might have Backstage at the Caribou sent, I came across this story of one of my favorite novels in high school, Youth in Revolt. There's hope for me yet!

PS. If anyone has any ideas of quirky cool presses I might submit to, please, let me know. Think smaller than Bantam but bigger than a small press.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

I saw The Slutcracker this weekend. I saw so many people I know there. Leyna was in it, unbeknownst to me, so I got to see Caleb, and most of my girls were there. It was very well done. Classic burlesque. Instead of a little girl getting a nutcracker, an older girl gets a dildo, which grows to unusual size, comes to life, and takes her on a magical journey. The second act's cultural ballet scenes were different stripteases (Russians were in bondage gear with whips, the Arabians did belly dancing with veils, and the Sugar Plum Fairy was a pole dancer). I really couldn't believe no one had ever thought of this before.

It must have been so fun, especially for the people who had formal ballet training, to parody the Nutcracker. I know Tschaikovsky hated its success, since he wrote pretty much solely as a moneymaker. The actress who was Clara obviously had danced as a ballerina, she was even on point, and her over-the top "acting" was dead on.

I have the utmost respect for Sugar Dish, the director and head of Babes in Boinkland. I bet she's a blast to hang out with.

I'm doing very well on Christmas presents this year. One of my favorites is my dad's. I downloaded Moby Dick on tape and burned it all on CD (26 CDs total), and I'm going to give it all to him on a spindle so he can listen to it on his way to and from work. I've been listening to it in the car and at the gym, so when he's done, we're going to talk about it. He'll like that.

I love giving people presents. I'm quite excited about what I got DJGW, and what I got my mom and sister-in-law. I've even managed to get my close friends here small somethings.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Jade's 100% Superficial Guide to Human Psychology

How does the Modern Girl, rife with lingering existential dilemma, homesickness, feelings of failure, occupational strife, and near-perpetual clinically depressive woe cultivate a sense of groundedness?
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She gets in touch with her roots, of course.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Tree Trimmings and Ink

This weekend I accidentally slipped into Old School Jade briefly. Sunday night at a tree trimming party of all things at Simone's surrounded by beautiful blown glass and beans and rice for dinner. The last thing I remember is sitting on the couch with Oz and April with a bottle of Knob Creek between my legs. Next thing I know I'm waking up in DJGW's bed with a fucking wicked headache. Apparently I ate desert and don't even remember, then went into the other room and passed out on the couch. I guess when he came in to wake me, I was crying a lot over something I don't remember and can't figure out.

I've been good lately, but I feel like this was a slip-up. It always sneaks up on you when you least expect it.

My tattoo is finished (well, except for the toes). Pictures soon. Now I need to decide which of the "on deck" ones comes next. I'm trying to limit myself to one a year so I don't end up like The Painted Lady or something.

The choices are:

1. Start on the other upper arm, a Thoth with hieroglyphics in the back (This will be a long and expensive project, one I probably can't swing this year.)

2. The words "Madame Psychosis" in honor of Infinite Jest and DFWRIP, all swirly and stylized on my upper back. (This is the direction I'm leaning, since I finished Infinite Jest this year and DFWRIP demapped himself this year as well.)

3. My dinosaur skeleton, which might go on the back of my calf, not sure yet, and needs some research and some planning.

Discuss, if you have any opinions on the matter.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Hit Me

I read a Rolling Stone article about Britney Spears's "comeback," the other day. She's clean, coming out with a new album, but has also been declared incompetent by her father and had all legal rights as an adult revoked. Her dad has to sign for her to do anything. She can't hire her own lawyer because kids can't hire lawyers, and the only option she has of fighting this is to take a state-appointed lawyer who would cost her $10,000/week. The interviewer writing the article (the COMEBACK article for ROLLING STONE MAGAZINE, you'd think they'd want to tone down the creepiness of this by some degree) was never allowed to be alone with Britney, and had to run every question by her dad, Jamie, who shot down intrusive and revealing questions such as "What do you think about the election?" and warned the reporter before hand to "take care of [his] little girl."

And the article mostly glosses all of this over and talks about her album and her Gawd, y'alls! What?

The so-far-most-convincing-candidate for Emblem of Our Generation is arrested in all her teen-queen glory. Frozen developmentally, behaviorally, and now legally back there with those pigtails, slapping lockers in belly shirts. Not as cute at 27, especially with those glassy eyes and evident weave.

It's sad, but I bet she'll go out like Marilyn. America eats its idols and drains the marrow and blood from its gods. No wonder all our great artists kill themselves.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

I've been having really shitty luck lately and have been letting it get me down. I've been pretty antisocial the past month.

Lost one job, but have others, and this'll let me have more time to write. Haven't been doing much with writing on account of all the paying work, and this I think has really been what's been getting to me. I'm almost done with my first real stab at nonfiction, hopefully I'll find someone to publish it, then work on revising the novel I wrote last summer and getting a book of poems together that I can tour with next year. In the meantime, I can just model more, which is great fun and pays better than silly real estate, though is less steady. i have two out-of-state shoots in the next two weeks, which means I get to see more of New England, so these are all good things.

I had a wonderful Thanksgiving with DW's family, and I get to see my own personal family for almost a whole week at Christmas. Every day I get another rejection letter from some literary journal that doesn't want any of my poems, but like my former holistic shrink would say, every rejection is one letter closer to the eventual acceptance. Or something.

Give me love, lovelies. Your glitterteeth and camerahearts only blind me with all that glare.

Monday, November 24, 2008

If you've never taken a poetry workshop before, it's normal for most people in one to suck. In a good one, you'll get two or three good people, a couple decent ones, and just one or two laughables. But the one I'm in now, damned if there aren't five or six oh my god! pieces each week, with the remaining 3-4 still being, hey, that's pretty cool!

Makes me feel like shit in a way I want to be good and productive.

Friday, November 21, 2008

The Economy: This Time it's Personal

Every time I start to get used to the idea that I may not be living in what is to an American middle-class kid abject poverty my whole life, along comes said relative abject poverty to knee me in the figurative cervix*.

The development project for which I have been doing the most lucrative and rewarding of my jobs has been suspended indefinitely, which means that yours truly has also been suspended indefinitely.

I did a great job for them, I picked up things I had no training in and excelled in them. The COO was so sorry. She said everyone including the CEO I'd never met loved the work I'd been doing, and if circumstances were not as bad as they could possibly be, she'd hire me full-time in a heartbeat.

What else paints a picture of the cold, random universe than doing something so well, working so hard at it, having everyone appreciate it, and a twist of a butterfly wing causes it to mean nothing? I am not special and no matter how good or smart or talented I am, I am at the mercy of chaos, tossed along some spasmodic dance around the ghost of a strange attractor.

At least maybe now I can write more.

*the literal being non-cancerous, woo-hoo!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Last weekend I went to my first protest in years, the Anti-Prop 8 rally in government center. I went mostly to see Jamie perform. He closed it out and nailed it, mentioning how he wants a condo and a husband and a Doberman named Chaucer, then performing a very well-received poem. It was nice to go to something like this again. I'm such a sap. A few times during the speeches I even teared up, like when they pointed out a old M/M couple in the audience who had been together fifty-three years, and married for four. When did I become such a girl.

Trying new things. I'm working on a non-fiction piece about nude modeling. My workshop, which is awesome and includes Nicole T.D. of the 30/30, seems to like it so far. I've never written nonfiction though, so we'll see how it goes. Last night I finally went to Dave and Brian's Art Night, which, turns out, would have been totally easy for me to go to virtually every week after the Cantab, since Brian De P. lives RIGHT in Central and Art Night is a beast that does not yield to taming until at least one or two AM. This will have to be a reoccurrence.

This weekend I'm going to NYC with Derek for his 30/30 All Stars show in Manhattan at the Nuyorikan Cafe. However, if you're here, you should go to Caleb Cole's opening at The Artist's Foundation from 3-5 on Saturday. I'm definitely going to this show when I get back. It's free and this kid does amazing work.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Woman Killed by Her Husband's Coffin.

My favorite part is the car that smashed into the hearse was an Alpha Romeo. Too easy? Perhaps.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

I was on Model Mayhem and a banner came up for a millionaire/trophy dating website!

To sign up you have to be either rich/wealthy/successful or attractive/beautiful/sexy. You can choose whether you are a wealthy or beautiful man/woman searching for a wealthy or beautiful man/woman (no, you can't be both at the same time, apparently. No wonder they need this website. These demographics probably never coincide in real life!)

Finally, a dating website that gets down to what's really important in a significant other. While thousands of lonely shmucks still sit filling out personality profiles, here come these brave men and women to tear through the bullshit and get down to the brass tacks of love: looks OR cash money.

Some gems:

You may have worked hard to be where you are today - wealthy, successful and single. You are looking to meet someone who may not have wealth, but have a lot to offer - youth, beauty and personality. You may be young and beautiful, wanting a better life, and looking to date a millionaire....

Some people may think it is superficial to focus only on WEALTH and BEAUTY when finding a mate. But let's face it... it's only human nature to be attracted to these two important qualities.

WEALTH - As the saying goes "Money Makes the World Go Around". Some of us work very hard to make money in order to survive. It is not hard for us to see that those who are wealthy also holds power, commands respect and enjoys a lifestyle of constant pampering. At SeekingMillionaire, we believe wealth is a very important quality in selecting a significant other. Over 50% of all marriages end in divorce because of money or the lack thereof. Love and financial stability are both very important foundations of a lasting relationship. So as they say, why have love only, when you can have love and wealth?

BEAUTY - Beauty is a quality that provides a perceptual experience of pleasure, affirmation, meaning, or goodness. A beautiful person is one who invokes powerful feelings of attraction and emotional well-being. It is not surprising that all of us dream of being with a model, beauty queen or a Hollywood actor. Our website is also designed to cater to beautiful people, with the main goal of match-making those with beauty with those with wealth.


Of course! The divorce rate is soaring because the divorcing couples aren't rich enough! How did we not realize what was at the root of this problem? Thanks, SeekingMillionaire!

What I think is most interesting is these people cannot possibly believe in these contrived rationalizations. They are catering to cynical, "realistic" clientele with this "let's face it" no-nonsense approach, but I bet you $100K/year they are completely cynical about this cynicism, high fiving over the naive rich and beautiful who buy their spurious selling of unapologetic shallowness. Does double cynicism equal sincerity? Do smirks cancel each other out?

Hey, sexy girls join free. Well, it's a back-up plan.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

crashing

One second you're joyfully jerking around to crazy techno music with five of your closest friends heading back up to Somerville in the I-93 tunnel, the next you're centrifugally jerking against the door as the car spins out and you crash at 60mph into the wall, alone, together, the six of you, in the post-midnight CFL low-glowing Lynchian tunnel, pointing the wrong way on a freeway in a tunnel right past a blind curve, the air after the cleanly pervasive smack of impact only the burning smell of metal violently bent and the suddenly ominous glow of the CFL tunnel lights, certain that any second the car will explode, or one of your friends' heads will roll off redly fountaining necks, or another car will come careening around the curve and finish the job that you were somehow too deft or lucky to evade for a few spuriously heartening moments.

But the car starts to move again, and the car turns around and drives, and it's making a terrible noise, but after five hundred feet or so the part making the terrible noise falls off, clacking numbly to the street, and the smell of burning ruin remains, but it must be far enough away from the gas tank because you don't blow up, and everyone who wasn't wearing a seatbelt or who has never been in a crash before or who has a phobia of law enforcement is especially shaken up, which is pretty much everyone in the car except you.

You've been this close before though, and closer, and you are familiar with the routine of Near Death, and you look forward to the stoic aftermath and the reflection, and the flatline knowledge that none of it is really in your control, and the thankfulness, and the re-epiphany that whatever you worry about all the time when you walk under the grey sky with your eyes down and fists punched deep into pockets really matters about as much as a fruitfly hangnail.

You wake up early the next morning spooned in with a loved-one, naked as birth, and feel the echoes of your heart beating clear up in your skull, and look forward to the way coffee is about to smell, the extra-sweetness of ricotta, the photoshop brilliance of the leaves and the sky.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

I fear I am growing into that adult who used to show promise. Bitter with a crease between my eyebrows. I say to the kids, "I was so talented at so many things, but unlucky, and nothing came together, and I gave up. Now I'm here. I guess this is enough."

I feel like I've lost my gift without ever even doing anything with it. Is something in me blocking me from success? Am I horrendously unlucky? Or maybe I just don't have it. Why am I so stubborn? Why can't I get over it and just be happy to live and eat food and have sex and watch the sun move up and down.

I wish I didn't want to do something so impossible. I don't know how not to write. Do I want to try to sell out as much as I can to possibly make a living at this? Or do I want to complacently work a job and write in my spare time? Publish is a few small houses here and there, if I'm lucky. Have a quiet life with satisfying bedtimes.

Nothing is moving right now. And the cells in my cervix continue to threaten to give me cancer.

I am that disgusting adult who almost tears up at the music that reminds me of when I was a kid and thought I could do stuff.

Grown girl leaking over Dookie by Green Day. When did this happen? Is this what giving up looks like?

Sunday, November 2, 2008


Took this in Harvard Square last weekend. I dunno. It has something.

I signed up for the last minute for another workshop with Tom Daley this fall. Other participants are Nicole Terez Dutton, Michael Lynch, and Paul Nemser. Good, exciting, and a little intimidating. Thank god though. I've barely written three poems this month. If I really want to release a book in 2009, I've got to get cracking.

I finally got up the nerve to send the outline of my new novel to Janice this week. I'm about thirty pages in. I like it so far, we'll see what she thinks.

Halloween was such an epic adventure. One of those great nights I'm so glad I have sometimes, with multiple plot arcs and dynamic characters and twists and revelations and punctuations. Plus, Williams and I looked like this:


All that time working at Spooky World paid off, I guess.

On the personal front, around this time marks my and DW's historic one-year anniversary. I hear I'm supposed to get a lobster sometime in the next week. What a lucky girl am I.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Jenny Saville at BU

This evening I saw Jenny Saville speak at BU. She spoke of flesh and bodies, of meat, carcasses, of cadavers, cosmetic surgeons' fists in women's breasts, torture, burn victims, blindness, disease.

In the end, during questions and answers, a young woman lost it. She said she had been traumatized by the images in the lecture, and Saville, as an artist, had some responsibility to warn people (even though there was a sign outside this free voluntary lecture briefing its content) and to paint and speak with some freaking empathy, for the love of god. The images, Saville's voice and expression, they were all just so cold. This girl was really upset. "I'm significantly more traumatized now than when I walked in here," she kept saying, voice trembling, even after Saville answered her over and over by essentially saying, "I'm an artist, my job is to make art from the world around us, not babysit your fragile little mind."

Now that's art.

I loved to hear about her influences. I totally called Rembrandt, Freud, Velasquez, Bacon. She showed us specifically where she had been influenced by whom, down to ways to combine reds and whites (actually, she used the word, "steal," instead of "influenced"). The way she talked about light and the paint itself, you could tell how obsessed she had always been with the medium and the process. Also interesting, she showed a lot of paintings from various periods in her career, and ended the comments on them with, "I actually think I totally failed here. No, I don't like this painting at all."

She lives in a large piazza in Florence with her two children, three nannies, and twenty-two paintings-in-progress at any given time. A young art student who came up all the way from Miami asked her what her painting schedule was like, to which she answered, "Well, I wake up and paint from eight to six, then spend a couple of hours with the kids. Feed them. Put them to bed. Then I'm back in the studio from about eight till one am." Slight British stuttering pause. "I used to paint all night, actually, but since I've had the kids, I've had to paint, um, slightly less."

Thursday, October 23, 2008

I have 26 projects which is 20 too many and about two too many emotional trusty feelingsy conversations a week and too many people to trust and one birdlike girl whispering there is no trust not if you want to be safe and that makes sense. I think I used to be a good person. I think I used to be able to sit by the ocean for a moment in grey fall and know that ocean and that grey and that fall. What you want to remember is never how things were. But I can romanticize the coldest truth. My one gift -- I can make a story of anything.

I remember holding the hands of so many people I do not speak to anymore. I remember once my arms moving without my telling them to in time with some foreign chanting. I remember an early music trio in a stone cathedral in Paris, playing in echoing silence to a packed funeral. I remember the ocean bending like a marble and vast. I remember hairy armpits and meatless plates. I remember fighting with the Pacific ocean in a borrowed bathing suit with boyshort hair-- it won. I remember coming up to my parents' house during college, how safe and warm that first inhale through their door always smelled. I remember wanting to be beautiful. I remember wanting to be ugly. I remember so much sadness and rain in Ireland. I remember not wanting to forget. I remember my dog Shadow, in the end, with three legs. I remember being in high school and wanting to be touched. I remember laughing when my Grandma died, because I was a stupid, scared teenager. I remember so many people telling me I was too sensitive. I am still too sensitive. Now I just know how to throw it.

So me being like this I figure I only have a few options. Be an abusive twat, be a boring depressive, be an addict, or just work a lot and fervently. I don't much like making the people I love unhappy, think being boring is worse than dying, can't even get addicted to cigarettes no matter how hard I try, and swear to mom I haven't been drunk in weeks, so I guess that just leaves the stupid work and going and going and trying to remember how to love everyone.

There is a long fat closeknit scarf in a bag that I hope to finish by Christmas. A year ago right now my life was just about to change. I am so much better in so many ways, but I used to want it all inside of me. Now I am trying to learn how to love without hurting. I have goals now, and self-sufficiency, and thick skin, but I used to know how to listen to words and waves and the flapping of crows and the singing of sand.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

I'm thinking of printing a chapbook of poetry myself on Lulu and just touring locally on it. I have a decent amount of poems I'm proud of, and I'm wicked impatient.

If anyone is reading this and has any advice, now would be the time to come out of the woodwork.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

I'm sick. I was taking a nap, and for a second in the final haze before waking up fully I forgot how old I was. I had two great ideas today. One for a limerick sticker I got reading bathroom graffiti, and another for a short story (which I never write) based on a folk song that I originally had a few years ago in Indiana. Hopefully I'll be able to pull off at least one.

Monday, October 13, 2008

I discovered New England has mountains. The Boy and I jaunted up to the Berkshires and Vermont this weekend to remind ourselves we exist outside of the swirl of poppycock (I'm bringing poppycock back, I just decided) that is life in Boston.


This short trip involved many key entries of the Big List of Stuff I Love, including (but in no way limited to):


autumnal scenery,


mountains,


good bourbon,


really good apple pie,


baths and terrycloth robes,


microbrewed beer,


and, of course, Mr. W, himself.

It's easy to forget, when all I see is human-sized rooms and bright lights in dusk darkness, how stupidly fortunate I am, after all.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

we gotta get out while we're young: on dfw

I haven't written about this yet because I have been so bothered by it and am also aware of how ridiculous and self-absorbed it is to be bothered so personally about it, so instead I've been reprimanding myself and telling myself I must not be so bothered by it, or at least must not tell anyone else about it. But well, to quote my young buddy Carlos Williams of Emerson College, shit.

A few days after my birthday, David Foster Wallace hanged himself. His wife found him. He was forty-six.

I discovered DFW late, really upon moving to Boston. I started reading Infinite Jest this past summer. I savored it, lingering over parts that made me squirm, taking breaks to let it all sink in. I could read other things during these breaks. Infinite Jest was not jealous by nature, rightfully secure in its literary place in my heart.

I became positively giddy reading this book. I would read entire passages out loud to friends who possessed varying degrees of context and interest. "Can you believe how crazy he must be to write something like this?" I would squeal. This was a triumphant squeal of admiration and camaraderie. I had never read a biography on this man, but I could recognize easily in the obsessive incisiveness and impeccably desolate sense of humor. He was obviously obsessive-compulsive, and probably quite depressed. He was, for lack of a better way to put it, someone like me, and he did things I wanted to do, and was wildly successful at them. He was fast becoming an inchoate hero of mine, and he wasn't even that old! Maybe one day, I thought, I'll get to meet him, and tell him how much his work influenced my own.

Talent like that takes its toll. They used to call it making a deal at the crossroads. Selling your soul. Before that in Greece it was the Melancholia. The Black Bile. The broodingest of Temperaments.

When I found out, I was barely past the halfway mark in Infinite Jest. For days, I'd try to read it and get a choking lump in my throat, no matter how much I tried to convince it away. Finally, I had to put it down and take a break.

It's not that I don't understand. That's the worst part. He wrote one of the Great American Novels, made his living off his craft, was married, had a great job, and was widely renowned and adored. And it didn't matter.

I believe it's impossible to do work like he did, like I want to do, without these drives, whether you call them OCD, Depression, Melancholia, or whatever. When aimed directly, they can be that driving force in the face of futility or rejection or indifference or passions necessary to create whole worlds in your head and spend years writing them down (which is not and never going to be a 'sane' practice, no matter how you slice it). But I also know that just a millimeter to the left or right and they can sink a person, despite talent and even desire, into despondency, terror, paralysis, and worse.

General thought cross-section:

*I never want anyone I love to find me hanged, bled, OD'd, suffocated, shotgun-beheaded, or however they're doing it these days in the movies.

*I wonder how many fleet-fingered nerds raced directly to Wikipedia to be the one to edit his entry into the past-tense.

*At least his mind is quiet now.

Friday, October 3, 2008

In a shocking turn of events...

...I am not the center of the Universe.

I think I'm all grown up and then I watch myself act like a spoiled child and hurt the most important person in my life. I am my own worst Judas, the coldest betrayer's touch is the curl of my own fist.

I don't like who I've been lately. I won't let this continue.

I barely remember the last time I felt this heart-nausea. Bastard grey-hairs working the Frappuccino blenders told me it gets easier when you get older. They were liars.

I learned to love all wrong. They always say these days, "Baby, it's me and not you," but that is so backwards. How can you love interiorly? You have to love outward, not inward. Love is light and wants to expand. Try to suck it in and it mashes into a black hole, swallowing everything around. These stupid mistakes I've made.

Don't you see? It's you and not me. Everything. Why I'm here. Why I love. You are the important one. You.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

My Interview on The Sound of Ink


Michael Quigg was recently kind enough to have me on his show. My interview's toward the end.

Monday, September 29, 2008

The day the stock market crumbled, I took off work to go to the doctor for my bum leg. He marveled at my flexibility, my quotidian contortions literally raising the eyebrows and octave of this sixty-something seasoned orthopedic specialist. For the pain he gave me a cortisone injection in my left hip and some prescription anti-inflammatories. The shot is burning its way through my thigh like sizzling grease.

During the four and a half hours I was there, I managed to read Galway Kinnell's Book of Nightmares. It hurt to read. It suffocated my heart in twine. A fantastic, critical, earnest, and almost winsome meditation on the interconnectedness of death and love. It wants to live in my throat forever. Jesus. What else does anyone write for?

And what is all this writing for? What good are the hundreds or thousands of pages that exist in ones and zeros, that no one may ever buy? That no one may ever read? Medicine has improved but the doctors still say no surgery exists that will fix my knees. They are shaped too strangely, sculpted to keep me lame unless I wear Forrest Gump braces. What good is being a twenty-six-year-old woman with contraptions on your scarred gams?

Some days I think I will not be able to get out of bed. I have done that before, when I was young and dumb. Spent days in the bed skipping class and work because of the Dread. Sometimes I think I will do that again. That all this hopelessness will just be too much for me, and I'll lose all the baby steps I've gained.

I remember once a boy I said I loved told me there was no future in writing. That I would end up penniless on the streets. A crackwhore, I believe, was his precise choice of diction. He went into investment banking. This is so not Buddhist, Christian, or even mature, but I hope he lost his shirt today.

Hard to care about Wall Street on a day like today. Cortisone searing my hip-sockets, no promise of any kind of future except for about a billion people I love so much it hurts, and one I love even more, that scary kind of love, that kind that keeps you awake some nights with the heat and fragility of its breathing. I remember once, turning twenty, lying in bed and crying, and when my mother asked what I wanted out of life, I said, "I want to live in a house and write and make pasta for all my friends." Last night all my friends ate my pasta, so aren't I the the successful one after all?

This ache is so much more pervasive than any stab in my leg. People are just pain machines, it seems, sometimes. Pain must have been invented with us only. With the awareness of dust attracting dust comes the cancerous question: How have I ever taken for granted for one second anyone I have loved?

But we do, of course, in the end. If we did not, we would not be human.

Can it ever be true --
all bodies, one body, one light
made of everyone's darkness together?

Friday, September 26, 2008

Fear and Trembling

The first class I ever took in college was called "The Meaning of Life." It was an existentialism survey, and I didn't even end up majoring in Philosophy, but 10am Monday morning of my first day of higher education, I walked in wanting to figure out The Big Questions. This goal eventually led me to drop out, come back, and switch majors entirely to Religious Studies. It has also driven me on my path of becoming a writer, and led me in many (annoying, I'm sure) hours-long phone conversations with my brother about string theory, quantum mechanics, and the *General Theory of the Way of All Things.

This reflection was sparked when at the Harvard Bookstore last night with Tara I noticed this book. What an observation! When did universities become just income-generation bootcamps? When did our society become just income-circulation machines? Have we given up on these questions, really? Are they just too hard for our poor little meat-and-bone heads to address? Or are they out-dated, inconsequential, declared futile and discarded for the comfort of the sure momentary pleasures of a new ring and the scent of perfume.

When I was twenty-two, after a particularly low and long period of depression stemming from this consternating feeling of meaninglessness, a holistic therapist suggested I keep a box for the rest of my twenties, to open on September 9th, 2012, of everything that terrifies me. "I don't normally recommend to people to merely try to forget about their fears," she told me. "In fact, I never have. But you're spending every instant of your precious life on these questions that may not have satisfactory answers. I'm not saying you never have to think about them, just give yourself the next eight years to be carefree. You can do this, because you know when you turn thirty, you're going to look at all of them again."

"What then?"

"Who knows. Maybe you'll get depressed again. Maybe you'll figure something out. Or maybe you'll decide to put them back in the box until you're forty."

"Okay. But what happens if I die before I open the box?"

She just shrugged and smiled wryly. Of course. We all die before we open the box.


I put my fears into that box for over a year, and eventually, I stopped being afraid. I did things I never thought I could. I conquered my paralyzing fear of flying, I finished and submitted writing for publication, I moved to Boston, I stopped having social anxiety and made wonderful friends, I ended a clinging moribund relationship, I travelled and experienced things I never could have when I was twenty.

Somehow I have found, in all of this, an ineffable meaning that can fuel and sustain me through these years of early adulthood. Some raison d'etre in these swirling days of motion and stimulation that lets me, rather than Just Be, Just Do. Those terrible periods of depression in my younger years often left me all but incapacitated, unable to do my laundry, go to class, hold a job. Now I'm positively drunk on motion, on change, and my own luck to be in on this stupid crazy existence. Is that a meaning?

These questions are important, don't get me wrong. I think it's a major fallacy of modern society that such little worth is placed on their address. But at the same time, if you miss out on the beauty of life because you're obsessed with answering it's most rudimentary questions, I believe you're spitting in the face of any great Meaning you're trying to find.

I haven't put anything into that box since I was twenty-four. It's still there, in the bottom of my steamer trunk, waiting for that distant, impending birthday. Who knows how my thirty-year-old self will react to the existential horror of such a young woman who so fatuously thought herself so old, so close to death. Such a smartass, she was.


*not actually any recognized Theory. Yet!

Monday, September 22, 2008

The best day I've had in a while - really since I've been 26 (which I guess isn't really that long, but everyday has seemed a little like eight years lately) - Debbie's dad takes us out on his boat and we sail off the coast of Maine all day.



These are the kinds of days I need right now.



There is so much work to be done.


And so many people to love.



Live it right, said the ghost to the dying girl. Live it right, because you'll be living it forever.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

full moon

saturday night everyone freaks out and the full moon and the new job makes jade a dull jade unless she can get done her work and aren't all these nights the same anyways and aren't there always those tattooed knife-pricked devils out in the light of the porch and the moon hallucinogens or no and the girls with the low self-esteem and the boys with their pitchforks and the girls with their running hems climbing over each other you could just see in all those competing lights if you looked with the right angle the curve of gravity's grid pulling everyone toward and around each other in lonesome straining orbit and jade is done for a time for though she loves everyone dearly she has important work as important as relativity and the fall is coming with its brittle reminder of time that low sun and it's almost scarf weather which is the best kind of weather and there is still that scarf to finish and meals to make and weight to put on so much to do really before the winter comes so the brimstone smiles can wait for a while they're not going anywhere rooms are enough now just quiet rooms with books with work with sometimes quiet touching and what's wrong she says sometimes with taking care of each other it's the least we can do isn't it we who are so unavoidably alone we who poison our brains and tear open our bodies just to try to get closer to the same thing that hides hot and shimmering in those other bodies guarded by that damned cool impregnable perfect surface of the mirror

Monday, September 15, 2008

I want to make every day a work of art. I accomplish about 30% of my potential.

Couldn't sleep last night thinking of erythromelalgia, the crack in my computer case, and everything I've written that no one's ever seen. Age mellows, but don't you miss the fires that used to keep you strapped to your books in college. Will music ever be like it was when younger? When I met my boy I said to myself, this makes me feel like a teenager. I think I have held onto some of that tiger throat. I don't think you lose that if it's woven into your bones. If you have to create, you do it. Being rich or poor won't stop you. Heartbreak and betrayal won't stop you. Not even stability. Every year I become. I'm learning how to sail, this year. This year, I'm going to get some things published and make some goddamned money, goddamn it. And none of it will stop me, because I've learned a hundred times from a hundred hollow people that when you stop growing, you start to die, and I still have so much to do.

Don't you ever think of how lucky we are? That the tossing and turning dreams and nightmares always end? That there is someone spread along you with a working heart? That we can wake up like this smelling each other's skin?

Friday, September 12, 2008

The air is getting colder. I don't have the time that I used to, and I'm less depressed. Sometimes rejection is the best thing for your confidence.

I'm doing work that I like, and work that I love, and very little that I hate. I think I may even get to learn to sail, because Tara is the coolest ever.

If you just stick around long enough, everything has to come true.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Belated Birthday Post

I'm so cool, I even missed my own birthday!

Actually, I didn't. I celebrated for like four days. Well, three out of four, with an intermission. Tattooing and karaoke party Saturday night, Ryan Adams Sunday night, and yesterday museums with Tara and fancy-pants dinner with my favorite boy (licorice-braised duck and the best dessert ever, seriously -- OMG). I'm a lucky girl.

But let's not overlook the fact that I'm OLD. And as I've done the past few years, it makes me feel better to reflect blogwise over the events of the past year so I know I'm doing something with my life. I try to do as much as possible, really.

I started 25 working at Starbucks and wanting to run to another ocean. Instead I quit the coffee shops for good and bumped my way through a ridiculous amount of part time jobs before I found some steady income modeling, researching, and occasionally, slinging booze. The enigmatic full-time job still eludes me, but like all those who are older say, I'm still so goddamn young.

I started to hang out with other writers I knew from the Cantab. I heard poems by Brian and Jamie and Simone and knew I wanted to do that and I decided to work harder, to commit myself to writing poetry as well as fiction. I started to read more.

I spent October as a vampire haunting the young and old of Greater Boston, writing, watching movies rented from my local library, and trying to enjoy my mounds of alone time. I had time to reflect. I figured out a lot about myself and the person I always wanted to be. I decided I was strong and arrogant enough to be that person.

On Halloween Sandra tattooed two skeleton keys beneath my clavicles and I wrapped myself in a bedsheet toga to play Sappho. After many whiskeys at the Cantab a tall blond man in white boots and eyeliner got on stage and read John Berryman in a voice that vibrated down my spine. "Who's that?" "That's Derek." "Is he gay?" "I don't think so." After many more whiskeys and some attempts at dancing at Zuzu I crash in a random twin bed in Allston and wake up with this Derek character spooning me still in my toga. I scramble out of there and stagger still drunk over the Charles to get my car. Two weeks later, he was my boyfriend.

This winter was magical. I met so many beautiful people who have become my best friends. I became a poet. I signed a contract with my agent for my novel Backstage at the Caribou, and Warner and Bantam and Dell and so many other presses read it and for so much of the year I thought it was going to be published and all my dreams were about to come true. It wasn't till the spring when reality hit again, and I had to face that maybe not all of my dreams were going to come true just yet. I think the other things are good enough to accept that.

What else happened at twenty-five. I fell in love. Made so many wonderful new friends, did things I was afraid of, danced and danced and worked and worked. I moved up to Somerville. I finished a book or two, wrote poem after poem. Had four features in the Boston area. I've been so many places, New York, Cape Cod, Connecticut, Michigan, South Carolina. Saw Wolf Parade, Elvis Costello, MGMT, Bob Dylan, Ryan Adams, Liars, and so many other groups. I legally changed my name. I started working out. I went to the beach so much. I was happy way more than I was sad.

I think it may be safe to say, Miss Jade, that even with the burglaries and the sicknesses and the manuscript rejections and the changes, that this may have been your best year yet.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Join The SpeakEasy Cafe's Sound Of Ink
on September 11th, 2008
for our return to features
as we welcome Jade Sylvan!


http://thebrokenwatch.blogspot.com

http://www.myspace.com/jadesylvan

9/11/08 - Jade Sylvan
guest pic credit- Angelo Ucci
click the graphic above for the show's page

And make sure to join us in the chat room during the show
If you don't have a Blog Talk Radio account, just go to http://www.blogtalkradio.com to sign up
It's free and quick!

Join The SpeakEasy Cafe's Sound Of Ink
on September 11th, 2008
for our return to features
as we welcome Jade Sylvan!


http://thebrokenwatch.blogspot.com

http://www.myspace.com/jadesylvan

9/11/08 - Jade Sylvan
guest pic credit- Angelo Ucci
click the graphic above for the show's page

And make sure to join us in the chat room during the show
If you don't have a Blog Talk Radio account, just go to http://www.blogtalkradio.com to sign up
It's free and quick!

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Lack of update due to the fact that I unexpectedly had to spend the last four days in Myrtle Beach with my parents eating delicious seafood, lounging on the beach, taking boat rides, and flying kites... on the beach. Got a call on Saturday saying Mom and Dad had to change plans last minute because of the hurricane heading for Florida. Because it was last minute, they got a better deal on a 3 bedroom condo in Myrtle Beach than they would have on the one bedroom in Florida. They called me and asked if I could come down for a few days and what'd'ya know, I could.

I love to ring in September in another place. I love to travel. I love to go anywhere and everywhere at all that I can, but I love to have a home I want to come home to.

I have to haul ass today and tomorrow to make up for this frivolous mini-vacation. So much to do.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

The years die like old engines. The summer chokes to fall and you realize you are no longer twenty-five. You hope that mentally, you are still waxing, still getting better, not yet at that sad waning phase of the cycle so many friends started years ago already. The long long process of growing up and older like the slow expansion of galaxies pinwheeling in the vacuum. You didn't use to know the word insouciance. You are stronger, you suppose, though already your joints are failing. You are more desired now than you were at eighteen.

You try not to think of the grandmother of your ex, the way her matchstick fingers covered in blue veins looked as she fed a cracker to her parakeet, Baby, as Baby played with the cord from her breathing tube. She finally smiled at you once, after years of harlotry remarks. You didn't know it would be the last time you'd ever see her. They buried her alongside her husband, you heard, sometime last winter. The closest to each other they'd slept in years.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

So I was naive, and for all the "Goddamn it I'm almost 26 and have BEEN AROUND"s I throw out there, I am an idealistic kid. I really thought that other people would find interesting in writing what I find interesting. It never crossed my mind that an agent, someone who's job it is to SELL literature, would be taken in by the sensationalist stripper story I wrote to be marketable, and hate with the power of 1000 fiery suns a sparse and meditative character portrait. How dumb was I?

There of course is the first thing you think when your world is flipped over on you. "God. It is true. Who am I kidding? I am utterly talentless. This is hopeless forever and ever, and when they find out I am talentless, they will come with torches to my door and force me off the roof. My boyfriend will break up with me, my friends will abandon me, I will be forced into exile, change my name and my face again, live that quiet forest life like Gary fucking Snyder and write pastoral haiku for no one while waiting for the bread to cool.

But I remember feeling hopeless before. I remember believing I was dying. I remember believing I would never be pretty, that I would never be loved, that I would never make it out of Indiana. I remember last summer the sense of loneliness and abandonment, thinking I would never love anyone again, but I kept going and things got better. I remember my first agent experience in college, and how he duped me and I thought, Jesus, I am utterly, utterly worthless, but I am still here and doing what I love. As long as you're not sick, if you just keep going and doing good things, things will get better.

Coco Chanel said, "How many cares one loses when one decides not to be something, but to be someone." I have put too much of myself worth into writing. I'm like the women who die when men leave. I am a writer, yes, but I am also a friend, a girlfriend, a daughter, a sister, a party lover, a cook, a raconteuse, a model, a personality, a pretty face, a nice figure, an odd dresser, a good fuck, a social drinker, a researcher, a waitress, and a technical genius, depending on what IQ scale you're looking at. Sometimes maybe it's enough to make a good pasta sauce and knit a pretty scarf while you're waiting to write the next novel.

Now the decision. Do I throw this one in the bottom of the drawer and write another Backstage, like she wants? I guess I have to accept that if I want to do this for a living, I will have things that will be marketable and things that I really care about, and I can do that.

What I will probably do is do what I can with this one and shop it around to some micro-presses. If no one buys it then I might just say fuck it, she's right, it is unpublishable and put it on the Internets. I'm going to take a fiction break for a while and develop a new idea, work on getting some poetry out there, and then, in a month or two, probably start the next book.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Got off the phone with my agent crying. Worse than the worse-case scenerios I prepared myself for before her call, she will not represent this book. Not only that, she basically said it is worthless. That it is concerning that I think this one is better than my first one. That I have regressed, that my first one (which no on wanted to publish) was the work of a real writer and this one is the work of a student. She said, literally, that I should put it in my drawer an forget about it.

She said lots of things about specifics that I don't agree with, but she also covered her ass and said that my friends would love it, but only they would love it, and she couldn't even think of a publisher to send it to. Anyway, it doesn't really matter, because even though she's only one opinion, she's a very important one.

What do I do now? When the fuck is enough enough. I need to find something else to do with my life. Something else to make it okay to breathe. I don't know if I can take this anymore.

Monday, August 18, 2008


A return to form over the weekend. Derek's birthday at the Beehive was epically fun.

My agent's finished my novel. I'm supposed to talk to her about it tomorrow which means it's time for more revisions. The work is never done.

I'm writing some poems now. Hopefully I'll get that chapbook done by Christmastime. I have the first line of my next novel, now all I need to do is sell one.

Oh, and I'm gonna be on the radio:

Friday, August 15, 2008

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Do you ever just lie on your back staring up at the blue blue sky in an amphitheater in Indiana in between both of your parents who are happy and in good health, after getting off the phone laughing hysterically with one of your best friends back in Boston, one of so many intelligent, interesting, creative, beautiful people you get to spend your life with, after hugging your brilliant sardonic brother and his brilliant adorable wife and sending them back to Ann Arbor to get their PhDs, after kissing your beautiful, hilarious, talented boyfriend who makes your heart thumpathump goodbye at the airport, and think god, even with the premature joint deterioration and the unknown variables like lotteries and car crashes and book publications and even with the void, you are just so unjustifiably lucky, like so much you can't even take it or understand what you could have done right in any past life to deserve all this, and you just wish you could find someone or something to thank for all of this, this way everything is here, now?

Okay, maybe it's just me.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

*In less than 24 hours I will be HOME! I'm weirdly thrilled to be back in Indiana after months and months. I really miss my family sometimes.

*Last night Jamie, Steve, and I held the Cantab together while everyone was away at nationals. I waitressed for the first time during poetry and people were ridiculously generous, making it possible for me to take tonight off, which is good because I don't think I could have done it otherwise.

*My first friend finished my book and had very interesting insights. The gist was I think it's effective -- she got out of it what I wanted. I guess the fact that I can have these types of conversations about my book means I'm doing a good job.

*My friend Kat is back in the States after her Peace Corps time in Africa. When she left it seemed like she would never be back. In a way so much has happened, everything is so different, but in another way it seems like we were just sitting on my porch in Bloomington eating cheesebread and drinking complicated beers and having salons. I guess this is a pretty common human experiential phenomenon.

Monday, August 4, 2008

Tara loaned me a Betsey Johnson dress to wear for my Lizard feature. I have to say, I think I did a very good job. I'm proud of my performance, and I had everyone there I could hope for/want.

Finished the first draft of The Novel and sent it off to friends and lovers. Will drop it off with my agent tomorrow. Doing a phone interview for the radio in September two days after I turn 26, anniversary of No More Twin Towers day. No real jobs yet but people are paying to take pictures of me.

Wolf Parade was inspiring, one of the best concerts I can remember ever going to, even in college, even as a CD-to-chest-clutching adolescent. What a great band. The whole crowd bouncing together, screaming "I'll Believe in Anything," I guess some people might call that religious.

On and on, to bigger and better things only.

Monday, July 28, 2008


From a shoot on Friday. Fifty bucks and hour to work with a really cool photographer. Sure beats waitressing.

I've got some more modeling gigs and a research job lined up, so I hopefully won't starve again in August. Still haven't reached my goal of steady employment, but I'll worry about that when this novel's in my agent's hands, and after my Lizard Lounge feature on Sunday (which you should come to if you're reading this in Boston).

How is it I never feel like I'm doing enough?

Also, Jade's verdict on the new Batman: I love the way they're handling this series, taking it so much more seriously than Burton (who I love, but who is by definition a bit campy). Ledger plays the Joker as a real person. Bale plays Batman as a real person. The fantastic situations are handled with minimal cartoonishness. Me likey me likey.

Also, dude, Heath Ledger's mannerisms. The lip-licking, the surprisingly subtle one-eye blinking. The fucking WALK coming out of the hospital in the nurse's uniform. I was squealing with glee in the theater. Everyone hated me.

Also ALSO, Watchmen the Movie? I'd like to go on record as saying *ahem [nerd voice]* I AM SKEPTICAL!

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Last night Brian and I drank Really Good Bourbon and he told me all the things wrong with my poetry. All things I needed to hear, and so nice to hear criticism from another self-taught writer. When this novel is done (less than two weeks, I swear) I am going to take some time and just focus on poetry.

I was talking to my friend Nell, one of my only friends left from high school, about how so many of my old friends have disowned me. You have to dedicate your life to this. You're not going to be the best friend all the time. With art, you can always get better, and the better you get, the more people hate you for it. Must be like being a CEO or an investment banker. You can just always make more money, and the more you make, the more jealous people get of you. The more friends you lose, till your only friends are your money and your stuff.

I say, "But shouldn't I be more successful, a better writer before people start pointing angry fingers at me in bars?"

Brian laughs like a cross between a wild dog and a foghorn. "You have to succeed surprisingly little before people start to hate you. It can be something as simple as setting personal goals and meeting them, and people want to see you hit by a bus."

Maybe the most skilled writers are left with just their talent and words at the dinner table. At least I'll always have the characters in my head.

Monday, July 21, 2008

epic weekends

I turned off my brain this weekend. Didn't even let myself read. Saturday I went up to Connecticut to hang out with Derek's family by the pool. I drifted for hours by myself while he was cooking, just actually with myself, without friends or emails or even the characters in my head invading. Then at three the kids came over and jumped in, and I let them flip over my raft and squirt me with squirtguns. I got out for a couple of hours to eat delicious barbecue, then back in the pool with me.

At one point, Katherine, the littlest girl, tugged on Derek's mom's sleeve. "Aunt Sandy," she whispered. "Jade has a lady on her arm!"

"I know. That's called a tattoo."

She whispered even softer. "How did they get the lady on her arm?"

"Why don't you ask her?"

Eyes wide, vehement head shake no. Shy little girls are the cutest.


Sunday Tara went with me to my feature at Witch City Poetry in Salem. For my performance I received three free Belgian Dubbel Bocks and a salmon and creme fraiche crepe. Thought of making a sign that said, "Will Recite for Food." Rat tried to give me my own Art Saves sticker, saying "Someone gave this to me and it makes me think of you." I showed him my Moleskine with the sticker and told him, "Actually, I'm where those come from." He put it on his notebook.

We decided we needed some baked alaska inside of us, so when we got back to Cambridge, we stopped by Oleana and had multiple culinary orgasms waiting for Alana's flight to get in. I missed that girl to a ridiculous crazy degree. We all went straight to the B-Side and drank martinis till last call. She is right, in Boston, we have epic weekends.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

The nice thing about semi-employment is you can go to the beach on a Tuesday, if you want. You will be there with the high school kids and the housewives and the elderly an the rich, but if you want, you can go.

Tara and I went up to Singing Beach and sweated out the horizon in front of the muddy waves. I love the New England beaches. These rocky boat-docking Ahab beaches, warm only five months a year. I look over and realize that Tara, like Alana, like so many people I've met here, has almost instantly become one of the best friends I've ever had. I mention this, and look up at the sky and out at the perfect beach, the perfect ocean, and I may also mention how comfortable and happy I am in New England, how much I love the people and the cities and the nature and the landscape and the restaurants and the bars, how challenged and fulfilled I feel here, and how no where I've ever been has felt so much like home to me.

And this, itself, is terrifying, but feels good, nonetheless. I don't know how to be comfortable. For one who always pictured herself a rambler and decided to pick up and move, pick up and move, to go and go and never stop, maybe it's okay to find a place you want to be for a while, and people you want to weave into your nest.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

crazy how old Hurt resurfaces

Jade: I didn't have any friends growing up for long long periods of time. I couldn't get a date to save my life. Boys did nothing but tease me, call me freak or ugly or dyke. It was a joke that anyone would ever date me. No one kissed me till I was 18, and then it was just cause it was my birthday and I asked him. I spent every weekend at home reading or drawing and I'd cry because I was so lonely, and I really never thought anyone would ever love me. Really. I know it sounds crazy and childish, but I honestly believed that. I couldn't talk to my parents because they'd get mad when I was unhappy. I just thought of it this morning and started crying. I think it's something I've never addressed. I really feel totally unlovable, and I need to figure out how to get over it.

Lady: I have much sadness left over from my past and I totally understand how it is when people act angry with you when you're sad, even if it you can't help it. Suck. I feel like I'll have to fight myself forever, but we're not the only people like that and I feel like, as much as it often sucks, it is the same thing that allows me to take such interest in the world and to see, feel, and appreciate beauty.

Jade: That's true. Thank you. That's just what I needed to hear. It's true. I probably wouldn't be a writer if I didn't grow up like that. I guess it's worth it, in the end. Someone has to take on all these responsibilities of really meaning this human being thing.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

In my old age I'm starting to love getting up early. Maybe it was all those months working the 5am shift at Starbucks, making 7:30 seem like sleeping in. Maybe it's sharing a bed with a 9-5er, wanting to get up and have breakfast with him and make him coffee (don't tell the feminists, I'll lose my card), or just that relentless clock-tick reminding me do the most I can with these beautiful, beautiful days. It's rare I sleep past 9 lately, even if I'm out or up late. I wake up with this feeling of endless possibilities. All this will change, I'm sure, when I get a full-time job.

I'm so close to finishing my novel I can taste it like metal in my mouth. Plan: Finish this novel ahead of schedule (in the next few weeks or so). While I'm waiting for it to be shopped around (if my agent takes it, knock on wood), get a full-time job, make some scratch, have some fun, and focus for a while on poetry. Allow next novel a few months to gestate before starting in on it.

Marty McConnel's feature is tonight at the Cantab. I'm psyched. It's nice to be excited about poetry again.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

I have not been feeling especially social lately. Looking for a full-time job/feeling inadequate/nearing the end of my book/being broke all lead to early nights and hours spent frustrated filling out forms and resumes, mooching off friends' food and drink, and still never having enough time to write as much as I'd like.

Low-key Fourth of July. Could barely see the fireworks over the trees of the Somerville castle. I am so exhausted with conversations right now. They all seem the same, and I feel like I can tear through them like cobwebs. At least I watched the fireworks with friends and ate a cheeseburger. So fucking American you wanna rip your face off. Welcomed my friend Nell back from Switzerland. Nice to see her after a year and a half, both of us with new sexy boyfriends and so much further along on the paths to what we want to become. We've come so far since Indiana.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

You don't meet nice girls in coffee shops.

If Bob Dylan's "Not Dark Yet," from Time Out of Mind was my humid whiskey-soaked night anthem last summer (which it was), the sticky porch-sitting, cricket-listening, pensive streetlight watching theme for Summer-ville, 2008, is Tom Waits's "Hold On," from Mule Variations. It is equally as haunting, beautiful, and evocative of universal human suffering, but it also manages to be "Not Dark Yet"'s exact antidote and antithesis, both tonally and lyrically.

Dylan '97 (Sylvan '07):

I was born here and I'll die here against my will
I know it looks like I'm moving, but I'm standing still
Every nerve in my body is so vacant and numb
I can't even remember what it was I came here to get away from
Don't even hear a murmur of a prayer
It's not dark yet, but it's getting there.



Waits '99 (Sylvan '08):

Down by the Riverside motel,
It's 10 below and falling
By a 99 cent store she closed her eyes
And started swaying
But it's so hard to dance that way
When it's cold and there's no music
Well your old hometown is so far away
But inside your head there's a record
That's playing a song called

Hold on, hold on
You really got to hold on
Take my hand, I'm standing right here
And just hold on.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

The museums in New York make me think of time and intention. After how long do museums become museums of the people who created them instead of what's inside? If they did not update science museums with new information every few months, they would still tell us Tyrannosaurus has scales instead of feathers, and that Brontosaurus was a lurching, water-wading beast. Taxidermied (do people even still do this?) animals in the American Forests exhibit are poised in action above wood brass placards that read, "White Deer, donated by Beverle R. Robinson." There is a dark spot on the plaque where the Y has fallen off of the name, Beverley. Of course Beverly has likely been dead a hundred years, so I suppose they don't need to worry to much about hurrying to replace it.

Friday night Derek rocked the Goba salon. The poets there make me feel like shit the same way that poets at the Cantab used to. I read a sestina and Tom said I should stick to form poems. Maybe he's right.

Last night we went to Cuchi Cuchi for Jamie's birthday. I got to wear a pretty dress and eat amazing tiny plates of challenging foods. Artie, Simone, Tara, Jamie, Derek, Trish, Chris, such a fun group of people to go out to eat with. Afterward we met up at Zuzu with everyone. Some suburban dude tried to pick a fight with us for cutting in line because we're all in third grade and we want to make sure we get to the pudding cups before they run out of the chocolate ones.

Lower key weekend. I was tired and haven't really written in weeks, so I didn't feel like I deserved to go out all night. I felt boring and was tired of the conversations I would have. Came back to Derek's bed after writing a few limericks and passed out. He woke me up at five in the morning carrying a purloined pineapple and tickled my feet with it. Everything's okay.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

What a week. My Dad visited last weekend. It was great to see him, and also to have the reminder of why we get along sooo much better when he lives far, far away. Then Monday to Manhattan for Jamie's show + hanging out. Monday night after only five or so comped Grey Goose shots and a couple of beers and NYC pizza I'm careening uptown on this hellish subway puking into a plastic bag from the bagel shop while simultaneously crying, snotting, and laughing hysterically as the nice-to-meet-you couple across from us bonds over the scene's horror. Tuesday I see the dinosaur bones and buy gold necklaces. Catch the Fung Wah back in time to see some friends before bed.

I have a lonely pit in my stomach and I know it's because I do not need people. I let myself be there for others, always, but do not reach out often, and no one asks. Instead I keep things inside and they gnaw a hollow cavern in my guts. Scream into my mouth and you get an echo.

Oh, Liberty, when you gonna learn you can't count on people? I usually try to avoid passive language here, but in the past week stuff has happened that really makes me question where I am in this flashing color world. Of course at 25 I go into all relationships knowing you can't trust anyone, but of course at 25 I always hope I will be proven wrong. Nihilistic as I am lately, I'm not pessimistic enough that I don't get disappointed. It must be me, these things are always me, the way I act toward the people I choose to be around leads me to these relationships where I have to be strong and standing always. I guess I'm not the sort who should play that game where you fall backwards and wait for of-course hands to catch you.

Don't worry about me, ladies and gents. I don't need any of you with your weaknesses and your failures and so shiny specialness. Letting people down is easy and boring. Being there for people is the curious intriguing act these days. Too bad no one's as interesting as I make them out to be.

The rug gets pulled out from under you again and again, but you always get back up to stand on it. I mean, what choice do you have? Unless you just want to lie there, you gotta stand on this tenuous surface, even though you know it's just gonna knock you on your ass again the first chance it gets.

Oh fuck those cold cro-magnons and their abstract thought. Would it really have been so bad if we'd stayed the tool-makers and never turned our hairy hands to art and want and the gleaming stars? I feel sick again.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Being an artist's model has really showed me how little other people's opinions about you matter. I walk around a class and see all these depictions of myself as someone sees me. There are some people who always paint you too fat. Some who always paint you too thin. Some draw out the pinks in the skin, accentuate the curve of the hip or the circles under the eyes, some paint you in hues of blues, some labor over your breasts, swelling them, making them firmer and higher and making them match each other better, some focus on fine lines, bulges, dimples, bringing out every imperfection, some smooth over everything till you look like a magazine girl.

But no matter how beautiful or ugly they may be, none of them ever really looks how I know I look. When finished, they always end up saying more about the artist than the model.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Holy shit! My dad's coming to visit this weekend. I was so depressed that I wouldn't see him for two more months (that would make it almost ten months since I'd seen him last) and he's never really seen my life here, hasn't met my friends, my boyfriend, seen my place, where I hang out, etc, that he decided he could.

I'm so happy to see him, but I'm a little nervous to hang out with him one on one for two days. He's very intense, kind of neurotic (no, Jade, not your family!) and a little particular. I'm not sure if he knows I legally changed my name. I know he hasn't seen my new tattoo:


Only one more session on that one, by the way.

In other news, I think my vagina is almost healed. I'm going back to the doctor tomorrow to get her looked at. Good, because for the good of all around me, I need to get laid.

In other news, I still need a job.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Another publisher is reading Backstage. The reader for Grand Central (formerly Warner) said she really liked it, but didn't think the initial printing would be big enough for such a large house. So another bite and an encouraging rejection. You take what you can get in the writing world.

Jamie brought over Patricia Smith's new book Blood Dazzler, out sometime later this summer, and it's really fucking good. Like, canonically good. Like, whoa. Buy it buy it buy it when it comes out.

I need a job.

You know, it's funny, but I'm not really afraid of much these days.

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Me: Do you ever get this weird little sick nauseous feeling in your stomach when you realize you've just written something really good?

Jamie: Yeah. I think it's called love.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

*Alana's show at the Plough was excellent last night. Good vibes all around. Talked writing with Jme and Oz. Feel better than I have in a while about it all. I have enough poems now for a chapbook and Brian Ellis is going to be my gracious editor in exchange for some vegetarian dinner and really good bourbon. Then I just need a publisher, but lets not get ahead of ourselves.

*Some MFA classes cancelled on me, which means I'm pretty fucked for money this month unless something else comes up, which something usually does, but not always.

*My agent Janice called last night and said another small publisher is interested in Backstage, so I guess there's still slim slices of hope for that one, if I even care anymore.

*I'm applying to work at Mass Innovations, a sustainable development company. I really hope I get a job there. My hippy side is screaming at me.

Monday, June 2, 2008

I feel like I got fucked by a cactus. I'm sitting in Herrel's Allston Cafe eating lunch/dinner and squirming after this 75 year old male gyno sliced off all the evil cells from my cervix aided by three oddly pretty and young female assistants of oddly central-casting-esque racial variety. I'm trying to write, but in my discomfort it just took me about three minutes to think of the word, "variety." Suffice it to say, you never want to hear "Should I set it to blend or slice, doctor?" in regards to any piece of machinery about to enter your vagina.

The weekend was so nice and glorious and low key. It was great to get out of the city with seven of my favorite people, all bunking a la The Real World, but fighting less and having more fun and better conversations. We went to the beach on a wonderfully cloudy and windy day, bought pretty things we didn't need, and made feasts. We went out and sang drag karaoke and danced to bad booty music at Vixen. We sat on so many balconies in our underwear with coffee. It was perfect, if only it were a little longer.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Provincetown this weekend. Jen, Amanda, Derek and I leave early tomorrow morning for the gaiety. In form, I have not packed. I've never experienced a warm P-town. It'll be very different from the one I saw last December, no doubt.


I have these two weeks off before modeling picks up again. I'm trying to get as much writing done as possible, but my days are filling up with neglected Dr.'s appointments. I'm trying to get my allergies (which the doctors assure me actually means I have an extremely ACTIVE immune system) under control, trying to get my knee, hip, and nerve pain under control, trying to just generally live a happier life. Hearing a woman talk about her weight is second only to hearing an old man talk about his stool consistency in terms of what most people care to listen to, but goddamn. I found out how much I weigh again and it's made me determined to find some gym I can afford or some pro-ana site that convinces me. It makes me think I have some dense tumor or something somewhere inside of me, because it seems completely illogical that I could be a size 4-6 and weigh this much. Okay, that's over for now. In other news, I made cookies.

Writing plods along. The new novel grows day by day. We're at like 150ish now, I believe. I'm shooting for a hundred more pages. One poem away from a chapbook, which Brian Ellis said he'd look over for me and help me make better in exchange for a vegetarian meal and really good bourbon. A lot a lot to do, which means I should end this entry and go do it.