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avatar yellow is the color…

May 20th, 2012 — 10:57am

oh.
life stories.

we were deciding on whether or not my mom should be moved one more rung up the assisted living ladder.
on one of my last visits, i went to check out what was considered the “last stop” within the facility itself. it was designed like a dormitory – each room had two single beds and next to the beds were night tables and/or a small dresser, a recliner and/or a rocking chair tucked into the corner. a couple of paintings and photos hung on either side of the walls. most beds had railings so that none of the folks could fall easily out at night. the furnishings were sparse, the rooms tidy, the walls filled with one or two memories of that person on their side of the room. outside the room, on either side of the door, were glass cases filled with figurines, and hummel pieces, and various personal tchokches, and framed photos of family and friends – personal effects. next to the glass cases, hanging on the wall, were framed pieces of paper. written on each piece of yellow lined paper was the name, his or her age, and a life story. some were a full page long, some half a page, some were just a few lines. each informing you who that person was, lying in that single bed, sitting in that rocking chair, or listening to the radio as he or she reclined. the family and friends framed photos neatly arranged in each glass case.

one man was a car salesman. he loved baseball. he had two kids, a boy and a girl, and two grand kids. His wife died years earlier, and he had alzheimer’s.

a woman named becky was a beautician. she came from a very large family in the midwest. she had never married. she liked happy faces and loved the color yellow. she had dementia.

another man worked the railroads, lived in colorado, where he raised three girls and had twelve grandkids. one of his daughters was living with another woman who he referred to as his fourth daughter. he had alzheimers.

another man was a holocaust survivor. he loved chocolate, his wife’s name was muriel. and he always wore long sleeved shirts.

each page told a brief story.
i’m sure most — not all — were written by relatives, or friends, remembrances of that life lived.

one life.
one page.

and as i walked up and down the hall, i couldn’t bear my mother becoming one page.

there was so much – so very much – to read and write and share between the lines.
over eighty some odd years of so very much.

and so, she didn’t move up the ladder.

as i write this, and think about it, i knew everything i needed to know about each person in each room.

i mean, my god, just knowing that someone loved the color yellow tells me everything.

but, still.
still.

i believe – in memory of so many – that we are each, every single one of us at least one or two or three or four book worthy.

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avatar what i learned this week…

May 19th, 2012 — 11:25am

i learned:
that being present is much more important than donating money
that a good friend reminds you of what you may have forgotten much sooner than later
that the answers are really truly inside of you, they are. i swear.
that if you can’t make a decision, do nothing. Do nothing.
that kindness far outweighs niceness.
that putting yourself last is not noble. not noble. not inspiring.
that being generous doesn’t mean giving away the whole enchilada.
that giving credit doesn’t mean not taking credit. give & take.
that sitting with something is much better than acting impulsively. sit. on. it.
never compromise. no, no, no….
to love fully & wholly doesn’t mean blindly.
to speak the truth only stings for a few minutes and requires no medication.
love is work, love is hard, love is worth it.
solar flares really cause emotional distress. oh. my. god. yes…
there is beauty everywhere. everywhere.
some people are just plain friggin’ rotten. we don’t want these people in our lives. toxic.
to snot nose cry is just as cleansing as an enema. i swear. it’s true.
miracles arrive on time. 11:11
magic does happen: one word: KRISTINE! She always – always – calls me at the right exact moment. always.
a beautiful woman will always be offered a glass of wine first.
a smart, self-confident woman will make her way to the bar.
a good man will bring you both the glass & the bottle. AKA: Ken
please & thank you can change a heart. and mind. and spirit.
that my mother – while not the best of mothers – most certainly taught me how to be a great wife, a good wife, and a passionate loving woman.
that friendship is priceless. Good friends are priceless. one word: HOLLYE!!!!!!!
everyone gets a free crazy ‘pass’. the list is long, i love them all so deeply.
no one gets a cruel mean ‘pass.’ Yes, you, crazy mean nasty person.
writing is hard. period.
the obstacles, the difficulties, & the daily challenges ARE TRULY DEEPLY the answer to your prayers.

and finally: life is messy, bring extra napkins.

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avatar non-returnable

May 15th, 2012 — 1:30am

It was sort of like an impulse buy. There was a period when I was feeling this overwhelming need to fill a huge void in my life. I wasn’t quite sure what the void in fact was, I just knew that something – something – had to fill it. I remember that morning as if it were yesterday. Ken was reading the newspaper, drinking his hot and steamy cup of coffee, I was deciding on whether to wear the black short sleeve tee-shirt with slacks, or the white short sleeve tee-shirt with slacks. I chose the white. I walked out onto our porch, where Ken seemed so calm and peaceful and I stood there with my hands ever so firmly planted on my hips and said – or rather announced with great determination – yes, I’ve decided, I want to foster a child. Ken nodded, continued reading the Sports page and as he sipped his coffee, caught a glimpse of me over the rim of the cup. “Seriously, Ken, I want to be a mother.” This, a conversation, continuing from the night before.

Let me back track for just a moment. When Ken and I met there were two things that Ken never, ever wanted to do again: one, was get married, and two, was have a child. He had done both, and that was quite enough for him. I too felt when I first met Ken that marriage was a very iffy commitment. I mean, why? So that when you divorce, all the shit that was yours to begin with now has to get tossed into a legal heap and maybe you won’t get the CD’s and the few pieces of furniture you brought to the party to begin with. But a few months after our first date, along with the “I’m never getting married again,” lecture, we found ourselves picking out wedding rings and meeting with Unitarian ministers. We chose both within a week. Okay back to the foster children…

I had this urge, not necessarily to give birth, but to fill what felt like a unyielding emptiness. I am not, I repeat not, a nurturing kind of woman. But there was this need, this urge, this flu like symptom that didn’t seem to go away. I thought maybe instead of adopting a child, we could, for lack of better words, rent one. See if it works. I had heard both very good and very awful stories about foster care, and fostering children. I knew a couple who had brought a foster child into their home and two weeks later felt they were being tortured emotionally. I have friends who had huge success at fostering a child, ending up adopting the little girl, and another one whose child turned out to be the devil doll. But I understood that these children needed to be loved. They needed to be cared for, their place in the world was so fragile, so tentative, so scary.

And I, obviously, had an urge.

I stood there and waited for Ken to give me his blessing. “Sure, fine, you wanna do this, go check it out.” “Wanna come with me?” “Nah. I’m gonna watch football.” Ken thought, right or wrong, that it was like going to the Bide-a-wee, or the Humane Society. This isn’t something Ken cares to do, even though he is a very altruistic kind loving man. I was going to go the Children’s Aid Center and discuss the possibility of he and I becoming Foster Parents and while highly unlikely maybe come home with a happy loving child who Ken could garden with. Or at the very least, watch football with. I am such an optimistic fool.

I go to the Children’s Services office in our very small town. I am greeted with both a lack of enthusiasm, and much paperwork. Reams and reams of paperwork. I fill out most, call Ken twice (for his social security number which I couldn’t for the life of me remember, along with some financial information) and then I’m Ied to a small empty room with a scattering of very old magazines. I for one believe any and all public spaces should keep up to date magazines. This is a cause I will champion in the future. Nothing worse than old, old news.

A young woman comes into the office. She reminds me of an Amish woman, or a Mormon, wearing a long floral schmata and a very, very bad haircut. It looked like a very, very bad helmet. She says nothing, but gestures for me to follow her. As I walk out of the room with her, I casually mention that they oughta get some up to date magazines.

As an aside, in one of our continual (I am pushy) conversations both that morning, and the night before, Ken tells me that – if in fact I actually go through with this – he would prefer a boy, if in fact there’s a choice, and a boy who can garden, weed, since it’s summertime and if in fact we are going to foster a child for two, three, four weeks than I should take into consideration that it would be great for Ken to have a weeding partner slash buddy. I, of course, would love a girl to go shopping with and go to nail salons with and someone to talk to about Ken’s – her foster father – weeding issues.

I am now led to another room where the Mormon slash Amish woman has a desk. I sit across from her and I look around the room for signs, clues of a life, her life. I see not a photo, or a calendar, or any sign of life, period. In the corner on the radiator what appears to be a dead plant. But, I convince myself, that could happen to anyone. Not everyone has a green thumb.

She pulls out what appears to be a thick binder. She slides it across the desk and motions for me to open it. I am now beginning to think that maybe she is mute, since not a word was spoken. Perhaps I should move my lips very slowly when talking to her so she can read my lips, I think, as I open the binder. There in vivid color are snapshots, photos, 8 x 10 glossies of babies, young adults, black, white, Hispanic, Asian, mentally disabled, physically challenged, older, taller, toddlers, and teenagers. Thirty, forty photos. Some take your breath away. A sparkle in the eyes, a dimple in the cheek, a turned up nose, freckles, thick curly hair, missing teeth, a lazy eye, the gorgeous skin-tone. The sadness is palpable. The joy diminished. The desperation is obvious.

Then she speaks: she tells me it’s a fairly long complicated process, could take weeks and weeks, maybe even a month or two. Yes, yes — bureaucratic bullshit paperwork – my words, not hers. She doesn’t like that I use the word bullshit, I can tell. She continues, a lot of these kids are in homes and are soon to be removed, or have to leave. I ask why. She says well it didn’t work out, there was a clash, the kids, you know, have issues. Major, major issues. The foster parents have issues. Major, major issues. Sometimes there’s no patience or tolerance. Sometimes there are altercations. But they’re getting full up and pretty soon these kids are gonna be back to square one. Her words.

I stare out the window, and think of Ken. He’s probably soaking in a tub, bubble bath and all, watching his beloved Giants, screaming at the TV set, drinking a beer, or glass of Pinot Noir, and enjoying his life completely. Not a care the world. He likes it that way.

I woke up a few days earlier wanting to have a kid, I was hormonal and lonely. Hormonal, lonely and cranky and older than the day before. Not a great combo, I want a kid!!!! Stamping my feet, I’m sure, or the equivalent. Instead of going to the Woodbury Common Outlet stores, I went to Child Services. Instead of trying on a pair of shoes, I looked through a binder of children who needed love, and a home, and a place that was safe and kind and probably, more than likely, never owned a pair of new shoes, because chances are they were all hand-me-downs. And that’s when it all came together. The words: hand-me-downs. I wasn’t making a commitment to giving them a life or a future, I was teetering on making a decision to give them a place to live for a month or two, or maybe even less. In other words, they were returnable. I felt so profoundly sad – my heart breaking. I didn’t want a child for the rest of their life, I wanted a child to take away my loneliness, my crankiness, my hormonal imbalance for a month or two. And it dawned on me in this empty lifeless office with a woman who desperately needed a good haircut and a make-over, that I was being completely and utterly selfish.

I told the Amish slash Mormon woman that I needed some time to think about all of this. I couldn’t be completely truthful with her, and tell her that I had in fact wasted her time, because that would seem even more selfish. She asked me if I wanted to bring the binder home for my husband to look at the photos. I told her, no, and she asked, “Does he like catalogues, because this is just like flipping though a catalogue.”

I stopped feeling selfish in that moment. I looked at her and said: “These kids… in this catalogue, they need love, they need care. They need shoes. They’re not pieces of clothing you pick out, thinking, well if they don’t fit, I can return them, these children on these pages in this binder were not wanted when they came into the world, they’re not returnable. You’re job is to find them a home. A loving home.”

She looked at me, her eyes already filled with sadness, fill up with tears. “I don’t like my job, it’s just I feel so empty.” she said.

We were the same woman in that moment, except I had the better haircut.

“Hey listen,” I say, “I don’t really want a kid, I want to fill a void, and I know what it’s like to feel empty. I do, but while you’re working here, at the very least, please, oh, please … when you hand the person or the couple the binder, please, tell them that the pages are filled with huge potential and an amazing opportunity to love better, love more, and if you don’t wanna do that, maybe you should quit your job and find something you love to do.”

I hit a nerve, I could tell. I hugged her good-bye, a good strong hug. I told her that she should live her life out-loud, that everyone – EVERYONE – is scared, including me, that I was very, very scared; for her to find the thing she loves to do and do it, and … although I thought it, I did not say it: please, I’m begging, go out and get a good haircut, but what I did say was please, please, get rid of the dead plant, it’s not inspiring.

And then the moment of clarity as I drove home. Absolute perfect clarity. I didn’t go there to foster a child, I went there to foster my very own spirit. To awaken to my very own life, to live more fully, to love myself better, to love better period, to stop being so selfish, and to stop thinking I have to — in this moment, right now, this very second – fill a void.

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avatar putting OM in MOM

May 4th, 2012 — 11:26am

it’s 3 years today.
she put up a fuss, and then she closed her eyes. gone.
officially gone.
i wasn’t with her when she passed.
i was home, changing my sheets when the phone rang. my nephew called to tell me that my mom had died.
you know, it’s a funny thing death – someone’s passing – it grabs you by the throat and for a good 10, 15 seconds you can’t breathe.
you can feel the stillness.
i felt her leave the world.
i did.
it was as if the world became a bit emptier.
i sat down on the edge of the bed, the sheets at my feet, and i cried.
i cried.
not for my loss, but for her finally, finally being at peace.
god, she needed peace.
she had been diagnosed with moderate dementia about 15 months earlier.
dementia, for those who don’t know, is bluer than blue. it’s indigo blue. it’s cruel and fucking nasty. it is filled with great sadness, and hot rage & anger, and messiness, and confusion, and heartbreaking words and actions and leaves many, many bodies in it’s wake. it’s a tornado and it just flattens the shit out of everything.

my mom died on may 4th.
5/4.
the year i was born.
54, 1954.

ours was a complicated, love-hate, hate-love, joyous, angry, fuck you, no fuck you, i love you, i don’t love you, i love you more, i love you oh so much more than you’ll ever know relationship.
it had ups and downs.
so many.
crazy ups and downs.
so many, i lost track.
but at the end, the end, the place where you get to hear and listen and open your soul, you get to forgive, you get to hold a hand a little longer, brush the hair out of their eyes and look into their soul and heart a little deeper, you get to kiss the forehead – that place where you get to say i love you over and over and over until it blends into iloveyouyouyoyuyouiloveyousoverymuchmyhearthurts…
that place when you know it’s the last time you get to make amends, say a prayer, make a wish, get to say out loud:
why oh why did we spend so much fucking time being cruel and nasty to each other?
what was the point?
it was then, when i last saw my mom, that i said good bye.

for me, on that day, when i looked into her eyes and i said, “mom, mom, daddy’s waiting for you,” it was on that day – that day – i let her go.

for me, on that day, i let her die.

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avatar making noise

April 27th, 2012 — 10:01am

tomorrow women unite.
we get to speak and shout and tell the world enough.
enough already.
no more of this chatter and bullshit about limiting our rights, taking our rights, obliterating our rights.
our rights.
our wrongs.
our mistakes.
our victories.
they’re ours.
our choices.
i wanna share something that happened the other day. i did something i haven’t done in like a gazillion years. i smoked some pot. yep. i got high. at first i was a little paranoid, off kilter. i stared out the car window and looked up at the clouds and thought, wow… look how pretty. white & fluffy & wow…
so, there i was in a car, staring at cloud formations when i thought about how i feel when i ask for what i want. when i ask FOR WHAT I WANT & NEED & DECLARE MYSELF.
after i ask for what i want, i can feel myself back peddling. i can feel myself feeling bad that i asked for my hearts desire.
i start to feel bad.
i start to feel less than good enough.
i start to rewrite in my head how i’m gonna take back what it is i just asked for.
and as i was going through this gyration in my head – i stopped. cold turkey. and i thought: wow, this is old shit. old stale powerless fearful stuff.
it has a long history.
it has an entire wardrobe.
it has an entire shoe box filled with photos and memories.
it also, thank god the universe the angels and deities, has an expiration date.

what’s the worse that’s going to happen if i stand up on my tippy toes and ask for what i want?
worse case: someone will say NO.
but NO is not the answer i want.
i’m not looking for a no.
i want a yes.

YES!

to ask for what we want.
to stand tall.
to keep going, moving, climbing until that yes appears.
to know that courage is found within all the no’s.
and to really know with every fiber in our being that being paid attention is only a portion of the payment due us.

our rights do not get taken away because of other people’s wrongs.

PERIOD.

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avatar the face on the milk carton

April 22nd, 2012 — 3:07pm

i don’t really remember the day.

i do remember the news. it was 1979. a little boy had vanished. his family lived down in soho, on prince street. soho was less fashionable then. more artsy. lofts were spaces, mostly large raw spaces, not luxury apartments. he had a strange name, etan. i had never heard that name before. he was beautiful. happy. filled with so much life. so much future. i had begun practicing buddhism a few years earlier, and i remember chanting for him, his family, his mom and dad. chanting, praying. i remember feeling scared. worried. praying. chanting. hoping. i remember the photos of him everywhere. MISSING. i remember seeing a photo of his mom, julie, and i remember thinking: i will never know her pain. never. i will never know what it is to have a child, and fear for a child, lose a child. i remember the words: vanished, kidnapped, stolen, taken, gone, missing. still missing.

those words lingered.
still missing.

still missing.
year after year after year.

etan patz.
the little boy on the milk carton.
i remember it as if it were yesterday.

and then yesterday, just yesterday as if it were 33 years ago…
a photo of julie patz, in her loft – that loft on prince street – staring out the window as the FBI, and the NYPD carry chunks of dry wall, and huge pieces of concrete floor and bricks from a building only a block and a half away from where he, etan patz, lived – they live, have always lived – in hopes that they find that little boy from the milk carton.

and i can’t help but think…
that she, julie, his mother, has been staring out that very window every single day for 33 years.

i just can’t imagine.

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avatar rules. i say break ’em.

April 18th, 2012 — 5:30pm

“here’s to the crazy ones… the geniuses… the misfits….”
yes that MAC ad.
from years ago.
the one with the cool wonderful, striped apple.
for those of us who never felt like we fit in, that campaign, that MAC AD gave us hope.
courage.
confidence.
and for some it completely changed their lives.

don’t give up, don’t give in, stand up, be brave, fuck em.

which brings me to rules.
who makes them?
i mean really?

who makes the rules?
i mean where does this stuff come from?
for example:
when you’re taking a screenwriting course, you’re told that a screenplay needs to be – should be – 120 pages long because each page represents a minute of screen time and 120 pages is – tada – two hours.
but what if you wanna write a screenplay that’s 77 pages long. what if 77 minutes is the length of the story you wanna tell? then what?
well, then, you’re told that it’s not long enough.
why, you ask?
because those are the rules.
the screenplay rules.
uh oh.
no agent for you.

another example:
writing a book proposal. why can’t a book proposal be wacky and fabulous and worthy of attention without chapter headings? what if you’re writing the most unique charming funny wacky sad poignant heartbreaking mystical piece of non fiction literature fiction memoir ever but the proposal doesn’t have chapter headings or title comparisons? then what? what if there are no books out there like yours because… holy shit, you’re supposed to be the one writing it.
uh oh.
publishers won’t read or like those kind of proposals.
uh uh. they’re unprofessional.
they want you to write the right type of proposal.
the publishing rules.

uh oh.
or uh-oh.
go start a blog, or it’s self-publishing for you.

why do we have to stop at a red light when there is clearly no one driving for miles and miles in either direction? you’re all alone at the light.
why can’t you drive through a red light if there’s no one around for miles and miles?
why sit at a traffic light for ninety-seconds, or two minutes listening to the radio, or…or… the strange noises that seem to be surrounding the car if there is no one coming or going in either direction?
isn’t that a waste of time?
(and yes i know… law, rule… in this instance, i say debatable.)

why not drink red wine with fish, or white with pasta?
i mean, who gives a shit?
and speaking of white, why can’t you wear white shoes or white boots after memorial day, or is it labor day? and really? why? what about tennis shoes? or are they sneakers?
why do you have to wait on line if someone can’t make up their mind?
why?
really, why?
why can’t they go to the end of the line, and try and figure out what it is they want to eat, wear, buy, rent, drink, order?
i mean who comes up with the rules?
and why are they right?

okay new rule:
break a rule today.
really.
be bold.

write your truth.
write your heart.
someone will read your book, your proposal, your screenplay, and someone will love it, and you’ll become the next big star. yes, really.
and then everyone will say: WOW COOL AMAZING A RULE BREAKER.
step out of the box.
the box you’re standing in is way too fucking small.
NEW RULE:
HAVE THE BOX STEP INSIDE YOU.
BE A BIG GIGANTIC OH MY GOD MASSIVE HUMAN BOX.

color outside the lines.
you know what, color everywhere.
anywhere.
PAINT THE TOWN RED.

wear white because you want to.
wear green because you like the color.

stand out.
be different.
wear your life on your sleeve.

and take a bite out of the apple.
if you don’t like it, don’t eat it.

the only thing you need to finish is what YOU BELIEVE IN.

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avatar completing not competing

April 15th, 2012 — 10:24am

i used to think that collaboration meant that everyone had to love/like what i was writing. “come on, love me. gimme….gimme kudos….”
i’m talking years ago.
year and years ago i gave ken a screenplay i had written, i wanted his feedback, reaction…and when he gave it back with a ton of notes, i decided right then and there, i would never, ever – NEVER EVER – give ken another screenplay of mine to read, edit, or comment on. he said it needed work, needed to be fleshed out, i told him, ‘hmmm. wrong. i don’t agree. you’re not a good collaborator.’
okay, how do you spell arrogant?
turns out i was so very very very wrong.
about both his comments, edits, notes and what it means to be a collaborator.

(fyi: he is a grand, fabulous collaborator.)

i have had the great fortune in the past twenty odd years to work with folks who are extraordinary collaborators. They make me look better, make my words sing, have taught me over and over and over what collaboration is and what it isn’t:
collaboration isn’t about everyone agreeing.
no, not at all.
it’s not about that.
it’s about bringing out the best in someone, everyone. it’s about creating an environment where everyone feels good and proud, and good and proud enough to take the lumps and bumps and rejections and disagreements. it’s about being heard and being seen. it’s about wanting the best for the project, not just one person. it’s about being able to say “i’m wrong, or… you’re right, this doesn’t work,” it’s about being able to hear opinions and comments. it’s about wanting others to be huge, and successful and rooting them on.

it’s about being able to let go. letting go of: the need to be right, the need to be the center of attention, the need to be the best, the brightest, the smartest, the fuck you i know-it-all person in the room.

collaboration – a good collaboration – is hard.

it requires patience, and kindness and the desire for all – everyone – to shine, to be huge.
it requires generosity of spirit and creativity.
it requires cultivating the passion and desire to be good. really good at your craft, your life.
it requires stepping aside, and letting others have a voice, a space, an opportunity to step up and stand up.
it requires becoming whole.
coming together.
wanting the very best for each other.
the opposite of competing.

collaboration.

it’s work.
it’s life.
it’s love.

the completing of each other.

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avatar Dear Vagina,

April 6th, 2012 — 10:11am

I’ve been meaning to write to you for a long time, but life… you know… get’s so busy. Cluttered. Overwhelming some times. But I have some time this morning and just wanted to sit down and write you.
There is so much, so much going on in the world about women’s rights.
Yes, your rights.
That goes under the same heading as human & equal.

This is what i wanna share with you:

You have the right to say no! as in: No, I did not invite you here, I did not invite you in.
You have the right to your own choices, and yes, good god yes, you can toss, kick, throw that person off of you if any person gets nasty, cruel, angry, defiant, drink, stoned, mean and violent. You have the right to toss that soul onto the ground, into the street, off your body.
you have the right to make a mistake and you have the right to tell that mistake to get the fuck out of town. leave you the fuck alone. take a hike. toodles.
please, always keep yourself clean and healthy, that is a vital, and very important. it is self-loving and deeply respectful.
don’t take your power lightly.
you are all powerful.
you are life giving. life nurturing. without you… there is nothing, there would be no one.
you are perfect.
you are generous (sometimes to a fault).
you are vibrant and vital, and let no man ever belittle you or disparage you. remember, without you, there are no men.
and the most important piece of advice i can give you, since summer is upon us: if you’re gonna cover yourself in a bikini, please, no hair, no stubbles. that’s, you know, unattractive. and it would attract all sorts of snarky & demeaning comments.

and last but not least:
vaginas – YOU, yes you – are god.
own it.

love, amy

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avatar all you need is a dollar & a dream

March 28th, 2012 — 11:55am

Okay, so my friend calls me this morning and tells me I need to go to the local deli and buy a mega million lottery ticket because, you know, it’s a massive fucking jackpot, and i should go and buy a lottery ticket. i ask her point blank if she wins what she would do with the massive money, and she says, without missing a beat, i’d be very, very VERY happy. i ask her if she would share this massive money with any of her friends, and she kinda giggles and says, “oh, no, but i would be very very VERY happy.” and i say, “well, if i won, i would definitely share some of the money with my friends,” and she asks: “really, you would?” and i say, “yes, but not with you, because you wouldn’t share with me, and why should i share with you if you don’t wanna be generous with me?”
she laughs. a cute little giggle. my friend is cute, but maybe not as generous.
then i speak with another friend in NYC who tells me she wouldn’t give me a penny.
not a frickin’ penny.
obviously, i am way more generous than that friend.
i am in my pajamas. and to be quite honest, a pair of really worn pajamas – green & black pajama top and black pajama bottoms (yes, with some small holes). I slip into my striped (multi-color) rain boots and run downstairs where I run into ken who is doing something with wood. you know, some guy thing. maybe he’s making wood piles, or building a fire in the wood burning stove … anyway… i tell him i need to go to sisters deli and buy a lottery ticket, a mega millions lottery ticket, and he asks why, and i look at him and i say, “why?” and he says, “yeah, why?” and i say “well, ken i feel lucky.” and he says, “well, i’m not feeling all that good.. you know, my stomach still hurts and i feel a bit queasy, and …” i cut him off. I do one of those gigantic waves with my hand and say, “hey buddy, i feel fucking lucky. me. i feel so fucking lucky that not only could i win the mega fucking millions, but i feel like i could win an entire country plus a car dealership.”
“i’m going to sisters deli,” i tell him.
he tells me he’ll drive me.
he can tell that i am lucky.
he can see that.
i am lucky.

i am wearing pajamas and rain boots and my hair is a complete weird mess, and i have ten bucks to spend on a mega lottery ticket. he has stomach cramps and is covered – completely covered – in wood chips.

as we pull out of our driveway, honest to god, i feel like we’re randy & eve quaid.

we go to sisters deli. our local little wonderful corner deli, and being that i have never bought a mega millions lottery ticket before i am so excited i can burst. i tell the cashier that i feel very, very, very lucky.
she tells me everyone feels lucky.

the guy behind me says he doesn’t feel lucky.
i look at him.
he’s sweet.
really sweet.
i ask him why, “why don’t you feel lucky?”

he shrugs. you know the kinda shrug that says: i don’t know why, i just don’t feel lucky.
I squeeze his shoulder. and i say, “you’re lucky. trust me, BELIEVE ME, you are lucky.”

i buy my mega million lottery ticket… and as i walk out of the deli, i hear him say to the cashier: “i’m feeling a little luckier, i’ll buy one too.”

and that my friends, is called keeping HOPE alive, as in: i hope HOPE he wins.

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