tardy

why i hate being late and why i can’t stop

I detest lateness. I hate being tardy. I was always on time in school, I hate being late for a movie, late for a party, late paying the rent, the bills, whatever. I am on time for rehearsal consistently.

Then answer me this:

Why, why, why am I late for work every morning?

I just cannot get up, get in that shower, get dressed and drive to work before I’m supposed to start my shift. It’s impossible. I feel terrible about it, but that’s just the way it’s been for a couple of months. No one seems to notice that I’m coming in late, so it’s not like someone’s hounding me about it. But I feel bad about it. I don’t want to be late. But obviously it doesn’t bother me too much because I don’t get up earlier for it or anything. I just won’t do it. I’m not going to spend more time in the mornings getting ready for a job that I have to go to. Then I get to work and everyone looks all nice (my officemate is always impeccable. It’s disgusting. Well, it’s only disgusting in that I look disgusting, and that’s disgusting.) and I look like I just rolled out of bed, fell in the shower and shuffled over here because it’s exactly what I did. I get home really late at night from rehearsal and performances and such, and I feel like Angel.

This is the only time I’ve ever be constantly late for anything. Even in college, when I had some boring classes, I would be late occasionally, but for the most part I would be on time. Not here. And once I get here, I find a good hour to kill (reading e-mail, checking phone messages, having a cigarette, reading other journals) before I actually start doing any work. I’m not a slacker. I just don’t like to be bored. I find that once I start doing my “job” I feel like my time is being wasted.

Now, not every day. Sometimes I’m actually busy and I get to work and I start working and the next thing I know it’s the end of the day… but it’s starting the day that’s so hard for me to do.

And I’ll be real tired when I get to work, but once I get home, I cannot sleep. I’ll find other things to do. What’s wrong with me?

The funny thing is I’m really obsessive about my alarm clock. I lay down in bed. “Did I set the clock?” Let me check. Yeah. The little light is on that means the alarm is set. “Well, are you sure that’s the alarm light and not the p.m. light?” Pretty sure, but let me check. Yes. The alarm is set. “What time?” Eight thirty. “Are you sure?” Yes. “Okay?” What? “No, nothing, you said eight-thirty. What’s the problem?” You don’t believe me? “Of course I believe you.” Okay, I’ll check. Yes. Eight-thirty. “Oh. Good. AM or PM?” Dammit! Uh… let me check. AM. “Good Night.”

And then I sleep through the alarm or I hit the snooze button for an hour. It’s pitiful.

My trivia reign continues. Last night we went to a bar that has NTN trivia… for those of you who don’t know what that is, it’s like a tiny computer that you play trivia games on a screen across the country. You get ranked nationally and locally and such to see how smart you are and consequently how big your dick is and such. So we’ve been playing this game for over a year, and we have found a new way to spice it up. We bet a dollar a game, per person, that we will have the highest score at the table. Now this is terribly illegal, gambling at a place where they serve alcohol, but since the kitty usually runs four to seven dollars, no one has ever given us any flack about it. It’s raised the stakes of our games so that not only do you beat them at a mind game, you take their money as well. Last night we played a few rounds, and I walked away fourteen dollars richer. Sweet. Sometimes I’d go all the way down to last place, but then pull ahead right at the end and win (Don’t test me on my Dustin Hoffman or Simon and Garfunkel knowledge, baby). I only lost one game… to the “Champion” of the aforementioned Trivial Pursuit game from Monday night. So we played until people felt that they were losing too much money to me, and then we called it a night.

If only Las Vegas had trivia games. Trivia slot machines were you played “You Don’t Know Jack” or “Jeopardy.” Can you imagine? That would rule. Except I bet the house computer would be like that Far Side cartoon where they were all playing “Jeopardy” against God. It’s tough to beat the house.

Speaking of Las Vegas, we’ve set the plans to go in January. A slew of us. I’m looking forward to that. But it suddenly hit me.. if we all go, who’s left to take care of all of our pets? We always check on each other’s pets when we are out of town… damn. I gotta go make more friends.

oooh, surly customers make me mad. I just got off the phone with someone who was yelling at me because I couldn’t give him all the info he needed on this software that he found in the closet that he bought a year ago. I told him where he could get the info he needed, but he didn’t want to create an e-mail, he wanted me to know the answers. I did not answer the phone, “Psychic Friends.”

I got the pamphlet last night in the mail (finally) concerning the colposcopy/biopsy. They sent me a pamphlet called “Disorders of the cervix” and it had certain sections highlighted. Just like a hug from Mom. Not even a written note in there about seeing me next week or anything… anyway, it still doesn’t answer any more questions than, “We don’t know. With this, we’ll find out.” I started freaking out, because I read the risks for what they said I had (or, rather, highlighted what I had) and why I was having these abnormal cells (pre-cancerous… which makes me a little more at ease) and it said genital warts (not me), having sex with more than one partner in your life (oh.), having sex with someone who’s had more than one partner in their life (ihh.), smoking (shit.), and being on the pill (dammit.). And I said to Eric, “Christ! I’m just putting myself at risk everywhere!” And he says, “Don’t you think that describes just about every woman around your age?” And I guess it mostly does. But the treatments for what I could have sound none too delectable. Freezing the cervix, burning off the cells with heat or lasers, slicing the cells off with a looped wire with an electric current. So I’m sitting all cross legged on the couch not touching my cheeseburger freaking out when Eric pointed out the picture of what the procedure looks like, and it’s this drawing of a male doctor by these spread legs looking between her legs with a microscope and smiling. So, apparently, someone is going to have fun on this biopsy. Anything to make ’em happy, right?

I’m mad at my car again. The seatbelt holders by the bottom of the door have broken, ON BOTH SIDES, so now when you want to put on your lap belt, you have to bend down and dig out the seatbelt from this crevice by the back of the seat. And last night I was trying to find my seatbelt, and my car bit me. I’ve got this slice on my thumb. Stupid car. I’m telling you one thing, I’m never eating a cheeseburger in my car, that’s for sure.

I forget sometimes, who reads this thing… I was reading trouble’s statement about online journals today, and it reminded me that I shouldn’t get nervous when I hear about other people reading my journal that I wouldn’t expect to read it… it’s not like anyone could sue me for slander or anything… but the other day one of my co-workers came into my office and said, “I read Livid.” And it took me a second to remember what that was… and then I did… and she says, “You go, girl.” But if the wrong co-worker read that, I suppose some shit could get started. No one reads it now that I don’t trust around here… it’s not even like I don’t trust anyone.. everyone here is pretty cool… but if someone took things the wrong way and didn’t think I was very funny… I suppose some things could go down that I wouldn’t find very fun.

In any event, just taking a second to make a shout out to all my friends that read this page, and the new friends that I’ve made through it.

I just ordered lunch, and I realize how much “When Harry Met Sally” has ruined my ordering out experience. I just don’t like all the condiments that places put on their food. A lot of times they drown the food in sauces, and I ask for them on the side. Salad dressings, mayo, ketchup, etc… I just ask for it on the side. Sometimes I like the sandwich to be on a different bread, and if they don’t have that, then I’ll have something else. But before you know it, I’m doing the entire “On the Side” monologue from “WHMS” and someone’s expecting me to simulate an orgasm at any moment. Well, I WON’T DO IT! I JUST WANT MY SALADS PLAIN! I’M A PICKY EATER, OKAY? There. I’ve said it.

And I’m sitting here waiting for a customer to call me back and I’m upset that he is so late at calling me, when he may just be stumbling into work as legitimately late as I do. I’m such a hypocrite. I suck.

a few obsessions

sometimes it takes all day to say a little

Every time I have gone to start typing today something has taken me away from it. For some reason I am busier this week at work than I usually am. I’m not complaining. I’m just stating some facts.

I am in love with hissyfit. You should check it out.

I won at Trivial Pursuit last night. All hail me. It was only a sweet victory because I was playing with the “Champion,” a friend of mine who rarely loses and when we play on teams he sometimes is his whole team. He only had two pie pieces. I beat the tar out of him. I did not choose to make a big deal out of it last night, but rather wait until my web page entry where I can say Check me out, baby. The world knows you can be defeated. I feel better now.

He’s not even one of those players that make you feel bad for losing. He’s not a gloater or anything– I just make these personal goals and desires that I get a bit obsessive with. I feel better for beating him at this game, knowing full well that this game means nothing to anyone, but somewhere inside I can answer the question, “But can I beat him?” Yes, I can.

It’s sick, I know.

Don’t even challenge me to a game of Sorry!, because I’ll whip up on your card-flippin’ ass.

I hadn’t gotten any mail from my Best Buy credit card lately, so I was getting worried that they messed up my account, so I gave them a call. The post office was returning my letters saying they had the wrong address. They had, they didn’t have an apartment number. What amazes me is this has been going on for two months, and they didn’t try and call me to find out what my address was! They were just going to keep accruing interest and fees and such and wait for me. Unbelievable. Pamie raised holy hell, and got those charges knocked off. It’s not my fault, I’ve been telling them for three months that I moved. You can only beat it into them so many times.

Gosh, I’m volatile today. Like a lit fuse. I don’t know why. I’m not really in a bad mood or anything.

Man, I had the worst headache last night. Kept me up really late. It only hurt when I would lay down, so I was feeling like Rocky Dennis all night, waiting for Cher to come in and pet my head. Of course, my Cher was snoring in the next room, so it wasn’t so much of a warm fuzzy.

My cats are capable of pure evil and malice. This morning I was looking for the script that I am rehearsing with tonight– I was learning lines last night and driving the cats crazy because since no one was home they thought I was yelling at them– and when I finally found the script, I found lots of cat vomit. All over the script. “Yell at me again, bitch,” it might as well have spelled out on the pages.

So today I must re-type the script, as I need it tonight for rehearsal, and your fellow actors do not appreciate yellow stains and fur on your pages.

I have a terrible obsession. I like to burn candles, and once the wick is all the way down and there’s just that piece of metal with a flame on top, I like to see how long I can keep the candle going by melting wax around the flame, moving the metal piece to higher wax ground, putting string in there to simulate a wick, and taking old pieces of metal with small wicks and adding them to the melted wax to try and get the ultimate candle. I cannot stop, lighting wax on fire with matches and digging around with pencils… until a piece of wax flips up and hot wax lands in my eye. Then I’ll stop for about fifteen minutes to nurse my wounds, and then the candle calls me again. I don’t know where it comes from. Part of it is just playing with fire, I guess, keeping the fire going against all odds… the rest of it is knowing I paid nine dollars for that candle and there’s all this perfectly good wax sitting there not burning or contributing to the candle anymore and I don’t think that’s good manufacturing.

Another terrible obsession: popcorn. I can eat popcorn any damn time of the day. I love it. And I worked in a movie theater for a couple of years. No one that has worked in a movie theater still eats popcorn. In fact, most times it makes them gag. But I will pop it and eat it every day, in many varieties. Give me microwave popcorn, lite popcorn, or authentic movie butter popcorn. I make popcorn at my house with a pan and oil. I had a hot air popper, but it was just a waste of air… that’s what the popcorn tasted like. I’ve been known to giggle making Jiffy Pop from having so much fun. I don’t know what it is. The way popcorn sort of melts a little in your mouth… and then in the center it’s crunchy… the salt lingering on your tongue… popcorn. good.

Man, I’m turning into a freak before your very eyes. I can feel myself slipping, just a little.

When I was younger, whenever I had a crush on a boy, I’d write him notes. Not even love notes, just letters telling him what’s going on… blah, blah, blah. And these weren’t your boring, “I’m in third period. I’m bored. How ’bout you? Circle yes or no–” type of letters. It was pretty much what you guys see in these entries… except longer. One friend of mine received a 200 page letter (on a dare that he said I couldn’t write one), he got it in three days. Another friend of mine was sure I couldn’t beat that record… three days later he had a 205 page letter. I would fill up notebooks with my thoughts to keep them entertained throughout the boring school day. It also kept me busy during tedious classes. If you’re looking to impress someone, nothing leaves an impression better than a stalkeresque ramble and rant about how the cafeteria sucks and “my parents aren’t home tonight by the way I love you.” Just reels the boys in, let me tell you. So I wrote a lot when I was younger, and I still wonder what was in those long notes I gave to random boys throughout the years. Do they still have them (as I know 200 page and 205 page boys have theirs (they kept in touch… like I said, it leaves an impression)), or did they throw them away with all the other love notes they got throughout their lives? Even if they did, I made a few boys more literate than they normally would have been… and that makes a difference, I guess.

So, due to work being so busy, it has taken me all day to make this entry, and I’m sure it’s just as scattered in thought as I think it is.

But I guess that’s fine, as I’m feeling pretty scattered myself. Gotta fix the cat vomit script.

don’t be ronin my dreams

i see a movie and debate my future. like that’s anything new.

I saw Ronin last night.

I liked it. I decided I liked it, which means the film had some flaws… but I guess I liked it.

It was funny, because you could tell that they wanted you to know you were watching experienced actors who didn’t have big names, so they kept putting them in recognizable situations.

Opening shot: Voice-over of Robert DeNiro, so the young crowd says, “He sounds like the dude in Taxi Driver.” In case that did not work out, they have him shouting a sentence over and over again: “Get out of the car. Out! Out! Out! Out of the car! Get out! Get out! Get out of the car! The car! The car! Now! Get out! Now! Get out!” A classic DeNiro line if there ever was one. “Is that the guy from Heat?”

Enter Jean Reno. Put that little black skull cap on him for the first fifteen minutes of the film, so we all know him as The Professional.

By the way, I will never see another film with Natascha McElhone. Ick. They started so you could recognize her too… she kind of looked upward with sad eyes– “Oh, the Truman Show. That’s where I’ve seen her.” Her accent was so horrible and inconsistent, I kept wondering when she was going to say it was all a part of her spy act and that she was from America. It doesn’t happen. For her sake, it should have. Terrible. I can’t exactly duplicate it here on the page, but I’ll try… pretend you are seeing a high school production of Dancing at Lughnasa. Then Natascha starts talking: “Yoooouve go’a stick with the plan that was chosen. Nouuu. We cooont be goun’ around without a plan. We’ve been given orders. Have you go’ a prooblem with that?” Like that. Have the sentence with an accent. Half without. Oi.

Then you’ve got Stellan Skarsgrd, where everyone’s like, “Who’s the Bill Gates guy?” And then he gets kind of angry, and he lowers his head and touches his glasses in exasperation, and everyone’s like, “Ohhhhhh. Good Will Hunting.”

And my personal favorite, Jonathan Pryce’s entrance. Just sort of spins around in a subway tunnel to look at something. You could hear the Infinity music playing the second you saw him.

Then there’s the Irish/Scottish guy, who they ugly up enough that you’re like, “I’ve seen him be the bad guy before, and I know he’s not from Trainspotting.” And honestly, all I could think of was that I saw him in Patriot Games, a film I saw, like, five years ago and don’t even remember, but something about the way he was being filmed and the way he was dressed reminded me of the film. What happened when I checked the IMDB this morning? You betcha. Patriot Games. Amazing.

It’s like the memory of nine films in a spy plot.

But I wanted to like it, and dammit, the filmmakers wanted me to like it, and I was in a car-crashing mood, I guess. Lots of innocent bystanders killed. When you’re a spy, you don’t care about anyone, you see. Which goes against Jean Reno’s character completely, but whatever. Or is it Jean Reno’s character that I’m used to in other films? Damn. I can’t remember.

I’m not supposed to.

So, if you are wondering how the shows went this past weekend:
Friday– terrible. Saturday– both shows went well. I was worried that I would never have a good show again until Saturday came around. Actually, Friday’s was still better than last Friday’s.

I tell you what, there’s nothing worse in improv than getting a suggestion from the audience that you don’t know anything about. And not like the audience is trying to screw you, you should just know about it, you know? I’m usually the one getting upset when someone doesn’t know a t.v. show or a playwright. I mean, everyone should be familiar with Edward Albee, Wendy Wasserstein, and David Mamet. We get them shouted out all the time. Everyone should know “The Facts of Life,” “Three’s Company,” and “Seinfeld.” But, of course, because I made a big deal out of it, it came back to bite me on the ass. Friday, we got Gunsmoke. Dammit, I know of the show and all, but I’ve never seen it, I couldn’t name any characters, and I ended up doing some silly gunfight on stage because my partner didn’t know about the show either. So that sucked, and I didn’t know what to do about it. Last week, we were playing a game called “Pan left, pan right” where it’s kind of like channel surfing. There’s six or so scenes of two people going on and each has a different topic or theme, and someone on the mic shouts “pan left” or “pan right” and you go through each of the scenes. Does that make sense? Well, anyway, my friend Andy and I got Moby Dick. Man, I never read Moby Dick. That’s a damn shame, I know, but I hadn’t read it. So I whisper to Andy, “I didn’t read it.” And he says, “Me either, but there’s a t.v. movie with Patrick Stewart and the kid from E.T. on TNT right now.” And I say, “Henry Thomas?” And he says, “I don’t know, but that’s what we’ll do. Follow my lead.”

And part of me thought, if I wasn’t familiar with the film, the audience probably wasn’t familiar with the film, but I decided to go with it. Andy sat on a chair trying to make it fly to the whale while I shouted “Engage” a lot, because if there’s one thing I know less than Moby Dick, it’s Star Trek. So this went on for a few seconds, until my buddy on the mic shouted “Pan Left…read a book!” And the audience laughed, and we laughed, because it was obvious that we had no idea what to do. So a few more of the scenes went on, one of which was about a guy trying to get in to see Evita, and was getting teased because he was there alone, and not on a date…and Andy turns to me and says, “What do you want to do when we go back?” Because we have to continue the scene or start a new one concerning Moby Dick pretty soon, and I said, “What’s that guy’s name, Queque? Queek? Queequeg?” “That last one,” he says. “Follow me,” I said. “You be Queequeg.” And then we were called on, and I jumped up on a chair, arms in full Eva Peron glory and sang:

 

Don’t cry for me tiny Queequeg!

The truth is I never read you!

I read some Steinbeck.

A little Hemingway.

I was in honors!

Read Billy Budd, hey!

And the lights went down to applause, and I had saved the terrible Moby Dick incident. But that’s my big fear. I get stuff that I didn’t read, and if you know that most of the audience has, then you’re at a terrible disadvantage.

Oh, improv. I’m sure my stories just make your day. Sometimes I really feel like a whore in this business. Improv… the show isn’t made without an audience. At the BS3 festival last year, I was talking to a guy from a troupe from LA and I said, “Wow, there’s only four of you, that must make for a hell of an improv show.” Because you’d have to all be working so hard for 90 minutes. And he says, with this lemon-tasting scowl, “Oh, we don’t do improv.” And I said, “Why not?” And he says, “That’s not real theatre. That’s not even real comedy. Your audience does all the work. You make them do all the thinking. It’s terrible.” And I said, “Do you know where you are?” And he says, “Excuse me?” And I started to take of his badge and I said, “This is the Big Stinking International IMPROV and Sketch Comedy Festival, buddy. It was an improv festival first. Why don’t you just take your smug ass down to Del Close and learn something, you ignorant asshole!”

Well, I was thinking that, anyway. My memory falters in the time that has passed. I think I said something else really profound, like, “Oh.”

But what he said, as incorrect as he is, makes me think, “What if other people feel that way about what I do?” I want people to know I’m in legitimate theatre. But then I think about Saturday night, when I was in the bathroom after the show and I heard a woman talking to a friend, “You know why I like these shows? Because I could never do that. Just go up in front of all those people with nothing. They have to be really smart.”

And then I pulled up my smarty pants and left the stall.

I don’t know. I guess “at the end of the day,” (as Eric is fond of saying) I don’t really think that what I do isn’t legitimate, and I don’t really concern myself with those who dislike improv. It’s been a great acting tool. It has been an incredible writing tool. I now understand what grabs an audience better. What keeps them listening. How they will tune out the sound of bar staff and beer bottles and talking and music just to hear what is going on onstage if it is engaging enough. What makes them like one person, and dislike another, when they really don’t know either of them as people. When an audience stops listening… and most importantly, what makes them laugh.

We were all sitting at a bar last night after rehearsal (as we are often prone to do) and we were just talking about stuff, and we got on a topic that was making us laugh, and one by one, someone would add to the joke or top the joke until someone nailed it right on, and we all laughed, and sighed, and sat still for a second. One of my friends goes, “You can hear the comedy shotguns reloading.” And someone else started complaining that one night we were all talking about something, and it got really funny, and everyone was topping one another, and he goes, “and it was so competitive. He’d say something funny, and then he’d say something funnier, and then she’d say something right after that that was really funny.” And I said, “Oh, yeah, I know. It sucks to laugh, doesn’t it?” And my friend says, “I’m serious. Don’t you get tired of laughing all the time?” And my other friend says, “Seriously, we get a little jaded by all the comedy, but you seem to always love it.” And I put on my little halo and said, “Every day is a miracle for me, Andy.” And he said, “You must be the healthiest person in the world, with all the laughing you do.” And it got a little quieter, because a few people at the table knew about my biopsy next week. Including Andy, who then said, “Because it’s good for fixing things, you know, like when you’re sick.” And he started flubbing a little, and he says, “I tried to write maxims, but someone always re-writes them and makes them better.” “Like laughter is the best medicine?” “Yeah. I was working on ‘laughter makes sick parts better,’ but I guess that other one was more appealing to the public.” And then someone ordered another pitcher, and we moved on to another topic.
I don’t want this to affect my sense of humor. I hope Andy’s right. I hope I’m the healthiest person in Austin.

shoulda, coulda, woulda.

an object at rest tends to get lucky.

Today is a very lazy day.

I have rehearsal this evening, so I’m taking this afternoon kinda easy. I accomplished my cleaning goals yesterday, so there’s not much to pick up around here…

I’m supposed to be learning lines for a sketch…

I should call my mother and father and see how they are doing…

I should call my friend in New York and check on him.

I should pay a few bills that are due this week…

I should call the bank and re-order new checks…

I should start working on my next play, as I have gotten the go-ahead from the people I want to be in it.

I should go through my closet and clean out the stuff I don’t wear anymore to make room for the stuff I will buy that I won’t wear.

I should work on my web-page and clean it up some.

I should make a mix-tape for my car.

I should get the timing belt replaced on my car.

I should go grocery shopping.

I should take off the five-month old polish on my toenails.

I should trim my cuticles.

I should brush the cats.

I should buy frames for all of my favorite pictures and hang them around the house.

I should fix the picture frame I accidentally broke the other week.

I should send my plays off to playhouses.

I should go for a walk.

I should go for a swim.

I should learn to play basketball.

I should learn how to cook.

I should read a book.

I should stop eating red meat.

I should throw out all leather products.

I should quit smoking.

I should turn off my radio.

I should write to my local congressman about the salamanders.

I should find out who I should vote for this year.

I should go clean up trash around the lake.

I should teach someone to read.

I should record tapes for the blind.

I should recycle.

I should give money to Greenpeace like I did when I was fifteen.

I should go protest something.

I should go hang out all day at the Pecan Street Festival, eating corn on a stick and listening to live music.

I should find a religion.

I should take a nap.

I should take a bath.

I should get my teeth cleaned.

I should get a latte.

I should watch a good movie.

I should go watch my boyfriend’s butt.

I should play with my cat.

I should play with my neighbor.

I should sit on the porch with some lemonade.

I should learn how to play backgammon.

I should buy a volleyball.

I should buy life insurance.

I should work on a will.

I should make chocolate chip cookies.

I should work on my telekinesis, and finally start moving things with my mind.

But I will probably sit here for a while, surf, take a shower, smoke, and go to rehearsal. Maybe I’ll take a look at that script, or start on my new play.

Maybe I’ll read a bit.

My lazy Sundays always end up being lazier than I ever intended them to be.

I need to work on that. Controlled laziness. Slovenly, but not lethargic. Rest without sloth. My feet up without my mind off.

But it’s hard. I’m always moving, so when I stop, my body really wants to stop. And with my job, I have no problems sitting still for a while… I’m used to keeping myself busy in one place for eight hours…

And I can find fun on the internet at any time.

I’ll tell you what’s been taking up so much of my time lately… magazines. I don’t even buy them, people give me their old magazines, and I have a few subscriptions, so I’m constantly reading magazines to keep everything current. And, by the way, I consider catalogues to be magazines. (there’s articles, sometimes, and copy about everything you can buy). So today, I need to read Details and the Chronicle and American Theatre and Entertainment Weekly and Pottery Barn so I’m ready for next week when the new ones come in.

Then I have to keep up with television shows… E!’s Talk Soup Weekly Wrap-up is an important part of my weekend.

Then there’s the books I’m trying to finish this week because I have other books I need to start on next week…

I can’t break even with my time.

I cannot do it.

I’m so frustrated with myself. Disappointed. Because I start reading these articles and I’ll come across someone like Lauryn Hill, from the Fugees who has a number one album, and a baby, and is respected and beautiful and the same age as me. And I’m like, “gee, what did I do today?” and I realize that I’m not doing enough… but maybe I am. What if I go and change my life, and the track that I was on was the way I needed to go? What if I change everything and it all goes to hell? Maybe I’ll just stay still and wait for everything to happen.

And I curl into a little ball on my bed and wait for the agent to burst open my bedroom door and say, “There you are! I’ve been looking everywhere for you! Your Must-See-TV sitcom starts in ten minutes. Let’s get you into makeup.. oh, but you don’t need makeup, you’re a natural beauty. Round hips, askew teeth and limp hair are all the rage this year! Thank God you haven’t changed a thing. So put on your baggy pants and get ready for the world to embrace you, baby!”

And I slip on my “Welcome Back Kotter” t-shirt and my baggy pants and step into the limo of my future. It takes me to a beautiful home where my cats have their own room, and a back wing for Eric to have parties with the Pittsburgh Steelers. We both become successful actors and I spend my mornings writing plays that are eagerly devoured by the public.

So my fear is, if I change anything in my life, that agent will have my old address, and will accidentally give fame and fortune to the wrong girl.

I need to control my destiny, take care of my future. I need to stay put and wait. I can’t be all crazy, running around trying to do something, when I know that staying still will guarantee my success! What am I, nuts?

If I lose my boyfriend to anything, I know deep in my heart of hearts it will be to my morning breath. It could chase away the most amorous of lovers. It could kill a ghost. Before I go to sleep I brush, floss, and use mouthwash. What dies in there while I’m asleep? I have no control over it. I hate that. And if I get up in the morning and try and cover it up before he wakes up he starts feeling all guilty that he has bad breath because mine’s all minty so he has to get up, and so now it’s like we just got up for the day, and all thoughts of morning festivities are sort of forgotten. Because we had to worry about our appearances, you see. My self-consciousness made him self-conscious. My bad breath is driving a wedge between us!

My mind has turned to my next play again. This is always a very exciting part of the writing process for me. I know that when I just start randomly thinking about it, and I hear dialogue in my head, or see scenes I want to write, I know it’s time to start putting it down on paper. Usually I’ll just have a random thought here or there, but when it gets like this and I want to talk to people about it, and hear people speaking these words in my head, I get very excited. My next play will be written! You have to understand that after I finish a play I’m proud of, I sort of go through this panic that I will never be able to write anything ever again. There’s no way I could come up with another story… but inspiration has struck again, and I’m stoked.

Plus I’ve already thought of what I want to write in here tomorrow, and some things I want to do to the page…

I’m fucking brilliant!

dust and sweat

airing out my closets

I’m in the middle of housecleaning right now, and I needed a break. So as I sit here, there’s sweat dripping down my neck and circling around my waistband. I’m going to mention again that it is almost October, but yet it’s hot enough outside that a little garbage detail can make you very stinky.

I’ve lived on my own for about five years now, and every year I move into another apartment (some bigger, some smaller) and I cannot believe how much crap I’ve accumulated over the years. I just started feeling really trapped in my apartment the other day and I decided enough was enough. It was time to start cleaning out all this shit I carry with me place after place after place. There’s boxes I have packed that I haven’t opened in two years! I just keep moving the packed boxes. Obviously I don’t need anything in those boxes, but just having them gives me some sort of security.

I hate throwing away things. In the theatre, you never know when you’re going to need something. Right now there are nine hula-hoops on my porch that I used in a show five months ago, but I can’t bring myself to get rid of them, because– who knows? We could write a hula-hoop sketch. I’ve been wanting to give them to a friend who lives near a day care center… just donate them to some kids, but I keep forgetting to put them in my car and then it starts raining on the hoops and now they look so sad I just want to go out and buy nine new hoops to give to the center. They don’t even know I was going to donate some hoops, I’ve just guilt tripped myself enough that I don’t know what to do with the molding hula hoops on my porch.

I’m sure they will stay there for another month or so.

Over the years I’ve held onto countless dresses that I’d never wear, but my mother insisted I may need “for a costume” one day, and I cannot argue with that logic. I’ve kept pieces of wood, poster board, broken lamps, broken electronic equipment, parts of computers, old magazines, stupid hats, and albums I’ve never even listened to… you never know what prop you may need.

I keep every letter an old boyfriend has given me… and then one day I get to feeling really guilty about it because of the new boyfriend and I throw out all remnants. Eric told me once he wished I hadn’t done that (he wasn’t there when I did), because he said that they were mine, and a part of my past, and it wasn’t necessary to erase my past to be with him.

But I hold onto so much of my past that it takes six movers to lug it to the next place. And I keep stupid stuff. I have all the playbills from every production I saw at the Alley Theatre in Houston. I still have my T-Square from my drafting class four years ago. I don’t assume that I’ll be bitten by the drafting bug anytime soon, but there may be a day when I need to do some impromptu renovations on my apartment, and I need to be ready with the blueprint.

Another part of my clutter I refuse to think is my fault. I am a big Winnie-the-Pooh fan, I don’t know if I mentioned this before… but I’ve always liked Pooh Bear and especially Tigger, and I used to collect Tigger and Grover stuff a few years ago. Well, all of a sudden Pooh became HUGE. And everywhere I went there was Pooh stuff and Sesame Street stuff– and I became the easiest person in the world to buy a gift for. And the Pooh stuff started tumbling in. I have so much Pooh that I kind of look like a crazy person, and the funny thing is I didn’t buy it for myself. But they are gifts, and I keep them and cherish them and everything, but I look a bit obsessive. I think the point got across pretty clear last Christmas when all I got from everyone (including my family) was Winnie the Pooh collectible items. It was about the time that I wa unwrapping the Winnie the Pooh dish towels that my father yelled at my mother, “She’s twenty-two years old, for Christ’s sake!” My younger sister was unwrapping useful household item after really cool electronic equipment, and I was sitting with a Pooh necklace, a Pooh calendar, Pooh earrings, a Pooh blanket… and I realized that other people really like to buy Winnie-the-Pooh things. They are cute, but you wouldn’t want them in your home, so people were buying them for my home. Plus I had a few married couple friends, and since they didn’t have children of their own, I became a sort of surrogate child, and they would buy me toys. I’m not kidding. One day we were all in the supermarket and I went, “Oh, look at that Pooh balloon!” and my friend said (in perfect mother droning fashion), “Put it in the cart.” I would get gifts buy pointing and going “Pooh!” It was incredible. It was like I was six again. (so i think i’ll be six now, forever and ever) After that, I think people backed off, and by my 23rd birthday, I started getting a variety of gifts again.

But my house is still the house of Pooh. Grover never caught on quite so large… mostly due to that pronoun-deficient Elmo. So my few Grover items around my computer desk still make me smile.

So, I’m cleaning all of this up, because I want to be low-maintanance. I’m sort of jealous of those people who can just pick up and go… just catch a plane and go somewhere else without worrying about all this stuff. And then I think… how sad that they have nothing tangible to show for all they’ve done with their lives. I have lots of tangible things representing parts of my past. That’s why they are so hard to throw away. I remember why I kept it in the first place. An old straw? That’s from when my friend Brian and I shot spitballs at each other on the trip where I won a first place acting trophy. An old flyer? That’s one of the first Lollapalooza ads when it was this idea Perry had to have a big festival of music and I was standing on Montrose in Houston all young and yearning to go to Dallas to see my favorite bands. A jar of stuffed animals shaped like penguins for juggling? That’s where I kept the first condom that I ever got… I picked it up at Lollapalooza the next year… when they finally came to my town.

It’s sort of silly, but they seem like nothing, but they hold a lot. Marcia Gay Harden (fellow UT alum) taught a workshop last year where she said that when she’s on a set that’s supposed to be her house or something, she’ll go around the set while they are setting lights or something, and touch all the pieces of the set that are supposed to be her decorating. And she’ll put stories to those pieces. That way when she’s in the scene and she’s supposed to feel something about her home, she can look at these salt and pepper shakers and remember how she got them for her first anniversary with her nearly departed husband. The story stays in her mind and her character’s history is alive to her. I think I keep these things around so my memories stay fresh.

But I think I have too much around here. And that’s why I want to clean it all up, clean up my head… figure out what I need, and what I’m just holding onto out of habit. Clean up some cobwebs. Prioritize.

At least get rid of some of this dust.

waiting for beer

i’m thinking about theatre. look out.

The moment that I realized that I had a grown-up job was when I woke up on a Friday, drove to work, met some co-workers at the door and we all shouted “It’s Friday!” with our hands in the air “raising the roof.”

Friday used to be just another day. Now it’s the highlight of my work week. Well, it’s an even bigger deal around here, because on Fridays they bring in coolers of beer and plates of food and we have the weekly “Friday Beer Bash.” (as I typed that last statement a co-worker came in with the money fund container for the food for the bash. Tivoli pays for the beer, we all pitch in for the food).

I assume it’s at this point that you decide I do indeed have the cushiest job in the world, and you don’t ever want to hear another word from me whining in the slightest about my job. Beer on Fridays. What kind of dorm room existence do I work in? It does make Fridays seem like even better workdays…

But that’s what I was trying to say earlier. I’m feeling like a grown-up because of my giddiness for the end of the week. It’s not like my weekends are all lax and I hang out at the park… I usually have shows and rehearsals and such, so it’s not like I get a big break on the weekends… I’m just so glad to not be here. And the only reason that I complain about this job is I sit at this desk so often that I get terribly restless.

But if I worked at home, I think I’d go insane. When I’m home for a few days because I’m sick or out of work or on vacation, I start feeling really lazy and unproductive and I start hating myself and thinking that I’ll never do anything with my life and then I have a big spaz attack and leave the house. If my house was my job, I’m sure I’d just babble away into a sanitarium.

I borrowed a book from a friend yesterday. It’s called Plays for Actresses. First off, in case there’s any debate, women in theatre prefer to be called “Actors” as well. We don’t need a sex distinction. But anyway, the book is written by male and female playwrights, and they are all female casts and is supposed to have all these groundbreaking roles for women. Tina Howe, one of my favorite playwrights, has a play in there. So does Edward Albee (Three Tall Women, duh.). The prerequisite Wendy Wasserstein is in there… but what I really want someday is for someone to pick up a collection of plays and say, “Ooh, there’s a pamie play in there. I’ve got to borrow this.”

But how to make that happen? How do I get my plays produced? I sent my first play to a playhouse a few years ago and a year later I happened to be in their office and I found my play and read their remarks.

Something like: “Very funny. Great characters. Concerned about the broken glass on the floor. Doesn’t have a world message.”

And that was it. I didn’t have a world message.

And I’m going to let you in on a secret that could kill me as a writer forever: I don’t want a world message.

I enjoy writing plays that make people laugh and see themselves or others in them and they have a great time and if they learn anything– hell, some bonus bang for your buck.

But I basically write plays made for having a great time on a date. I had a friend that joked I read too much Neil Simon growing up.

Austin theatre is funny. Funny-weird, not funny-ha-ha. You really have to have an agenda to get produced around here. “People” speak in a lot of “quotation marks” around here to get their “message” across, and I’m not about that. I don’t want to belittle the audience or be hipper than the audience or preach to the audience…. I just want the audience to laugh. To poke each other and whisper “you’re just like that” and get a little teary at the romance and feel. I want them to feel. If they don’t feel, they won’t think and if you just want them to think, they should be doing some research before seeing your play, and just leave their emotions with their coats in the closet. Who needs a heart for some of these plays? Oh, it just makes me so angry that no one is interested in comedic plays around here. There’s maybe one a year that’s a new work. All new work around here has to be “cutting edge,” “dangerous,” “cool.” And no one just wants to have a good time anymore.

But everyone will line up to see the old standbys (not that I’m dogging classic theatre, I love it as much as the next guy… probably more than the next guy). But no one is interested in seeing something new unless it’s snooty.

And that’s not the kind of town we live in. That’s why Austin theatre doesn’t reach everyone in this town. Most people here aren’t art whores. I want a theatre for the masses. I want a theatre that represents The People. I want to make people laugh.

Dammit, why do I have to make my characters sluts in the apocalypse to warrant a second reading?

Monks’ Night Out won an award in the Chronicle’s Best of Austin. Huzzah!

Best Funny SmellThe Big Stinkin’ International Improv & Sketch Comedy Festival

As if we needed another festival in this, the city of never-ending ftes. But when one is run this well, when it shines a light on Austin’s underappreciated comedy artists, and when it provides hours of gut-busting guffaws, it not only must be given its due, it must be celebrated! So we doff our jester’s cap to this jamboree of joy which, in three years, has grown to encompass 75 comedy companies and 55 shows, drawn humorists of the caliber of Fred Willard and Monteith & Rand, and made talent scouts on the coasts take note. Host troupe Monks’ Night Out runs the fest with efficiency and
smarts, keeps the quality high, and compares well with their big-name guests in the laugh-making game. Six months after, and our sides are still aching.

BS4
512- 912-7837

Hooray for us. If you are coming to Austin anytime soon, I highly recommend checking out the Best of Austin pages, as they are a pretty good representation of all the stuff Austin has to offer. Did that sound insincere? It wasn’t supposed to be insincere. I wasn’t being insincere, just so you know.

So there was a big ol’ fight going on in my guestbook, but it’s all been cleared up. So I apologize as well, for the women’s rights comment I made last week. We all love each other now. Me, the Brat and jazzbo are gonna go out and have a small slumber party. What cracks me up, is in the middle of all this bashing and name calling and expletives, there’s this cheese ad. Cheese ad! Someone signed my guestbook to see if I was interested in buying his cheese! Maybe he took too literally that I perform in the Velveeta Room.

Of course I went over to the site. Oh, like you wouldn’t. And on that site there’s a link to some model page where they will make you famous. Cheese and boobs, the perfect combo.

baby, you can drive my car

just don’t drive me crazy

I took the afternoon off yesterday, and slept. I just kept sleeping. So today I feel much better. Happy pamie.

Happy nervous pamie.

I called the doctor’s office today because they were supposed to send me all this information on what’s going to happen to me in a couple of weeks, and they haven’t. What I would really like is a nurse to call and say, “Are you okay? Is everything going okay?” but of course that isn’t going to happen. I’ve now been waiting for two hours for a callback. My mother reminded me that I probably need to take antibiotics before the procedure, since I have a heart murmur. I can’t believe the doctor didn’t mention it. So now I have to call and get a prescription. I have to take charge of my own health, because the medical profession is too busy to take care of me. My mother wants to come down to stay with me after the surgery, since Eric has a show that night… she doesn’t want me to be alone, and I guess she wants to do that mothering thing. It’s very sweet of her, and I didn’t expect her to offer, but I’ve really been feeling very isolated about this, and I’m not sure that I’d feel too comfortable with her there. It’s strange. If I had something wrong with my brain or my thyroid or something, everyone would be outwardly concerned. But it’s my cervix, and somehow that shuts people right up. They say, “Oh, I’m sure it’s nothing,” and don’t want to talk about it.

I got a great e-mail from an Amber yesterday who said all of the things that I’ve been waiting to hear from someone. Yes, it’s going to hurt. Yes, I’ll feel terrible. Yes, it could be very, very serious. I guess for my sake, I’m not going to lie to myself and tell myself it’s nothing, because if it is, I won’t be prepared. But for everyone else in my life, it’s probably best that they think it’s nothing, so that they don’t have to deal with it until it is fact. But things are getting really strange around here. In one week two people I know have been diagnosed with a brain tumor, another is recovering from chemo, someone else told me a story about a friend slipping into a coma from cancer complications… I get some e-mail that’s going around about a girl who suddenly gets leukemia and dies… there’s just a lot of death/ near-death around right now, and I’m nervous that I’m just another part of it.

Ew, this entry is sadder than I ever planned it to be. sorry.

So yesterday Eric and I went out to dinner. A member of my troupe works for a restaurant and he gave us a dinner for two coupon, but I felt that once I gave the waitress the voucher I had to start cracking jokes and honking horns to prove that I was indeed a comedian. Or at the very least she’d be like, “Monks’ Night Out? Oh, I waited on one of them once. Not funny.” So I’m cracking jokes about enchiladas and green chilies and I realize how pathetic I’m being so I just have a margarita.

The heat made me so miserable yesterday that I was like this incredible she-bitch. The A/C is out in my car, which, if you don’t live in Texas, you couldn’t understand the importance of that statement, but I was just furious that it is still this hot in September. I’m damn tired of it. So I was just bitching along on the way to the restaurant and Eric was waiting for the cool air to have a human by his side again, and I chilled out in the restaurant and had some cold beverages and everything was groovy.

But then we left the restaurant, and I asked Eric to drive, since I had the ‘rita, (plus I had a little cup of ice cream I was eating (like you used to get at school lunches) so he took the keys and hopped in. He started the car, and started moving forward, onto one of those curb, parking spot marker thingies. And the car is trying to not move, but I guess he thought it was just a speed bump or something, so he kept going until he had gotten my car stuck half over this piece of concrete. And I wasn’t really mad at him, but it was so hot and I was so mad and frightened at the sound of the underside of my car crunching over concrete that I felt my internal thermometer shoot way up and I was livid. I got out of the car and watched him try and move the car, but the wheels just kept spinning and smoke was going all over the place and it smelled like broken car and I was sure that all of the restaurant was laughing at us.

So Eric has me get in the car and try and back up, and he’s going to push the car over the bump. Now, I know this isn’t possible, but I’m willing to try anything. So he’s pushing and nothing’s happening, and this guy walks out of the restaurant to help us. They decide to both push my car back, which does nothing, and then I start driving forward, pedal to the metal, and then the car dislodges, and scrapes and screams its way over the slab of “don’t go any further than this piece of concrete.” And I stop the car and get out, and go back to the passenger side, and I notice the guy looking at me like, “stupid woman driver, always getting into shit.” And I wanted to say, “My boyfriend did it.” And what I really wanted to happen was have Eric go, “Hey, man, don’t look at her like that, I did it.” But I think he was just more concerned about getting me home and out of this heat because my face was beet red. So now I’m pouty, and trying to figure out exactly how much damage to the car probably just happened and I’m trying to figure out what I can pawn to get a new underside of the car. Eric says, “It’s fine.” And heat-exhaustion pamie snaps, “Well, when my engine drops out on I-35, you better come get me.” And Eric just laughed, because at this point he had probably had enough of me, and was trying to not push me out of the car and have me walk home. And he says, “Eat your ice cream, it’s melting.” And bitch-in-heat pamie says, “No, I don’t want it anymore.” So Eric ate it. We drove on very quietly until I started kicking my stupid car for all of the things that have broken on it lately and for giving me so much trouble.

And Eric is enjoying my rant (mostly probably because it wasn’t directed at him) and he’s going, “What else makes you mad, sweetie?” and I’m yelling, “Why do these trees have to be here? I can’t see all the way down the road when I’m driving. I just hate the new Sonic signs, like they are new retro.” And stupid babble like that, until we got home, where Eric started watching television. I made some sort of “ooh” noise when he flipped by “Vegetable Soup,” and he handed me the remote and went into the other room to read. He came out twenty minutes later to see if I had cooled down (in all meanings of the word) and I had, so he spent a little time with me before rehearsal.

stupid car ruining my late afternoon.

But then we laughed about it later on in the day, because sometimes I get really mad at him for things that I know aren’t his fault or were accidents, so I’m all mad at him, but I just sort of shut down or something, and look all wide-eyed, because I don’t want to blow up when he didn’t really do anything malicious. Apparently I get this twitchy sort of look and I start babbling about something else.

This one time I came home and found that my soap was not by the sink (I was about to wash my face, mind you. I don’t just check the soap whenever I come home like I’ve got OCD, for Pete’s sake). Anyway, I found it later by Eric’s tool kit, with these black lines in it. I asked him what they were and he said, “Oh, it helps the screws go in the wall better if you put soap on them.” And apparently I got all twitchy faced again and didn’t say anything, because he goes, “Was that bad?” and I said, “This is like ten dollar soap. I’ll buy you some Dial for your tool kit.” And walked out. My brain pictured him rolling some dollar bills around the edges of the screws and putting them into the wall.

I overreact, I know, but I don’t yell at him. I probably got real mad at the soap for being so overpriced.

Speaking of soap, last night I was glancing at my Garden Botaniks catalog and thinking about how my life will be better if I could just purchase $200 worth of creams and cosmetics when I remembered that I already have $200 worth of creams and cosmetics in my bathroom that I had to have, but rarely use. So I used them for a while last night, giving myself a mini facial. It was nice. I highly recommend Cabot’s Vitamin E peel-off mask for dry skin. And, man, if you haven’t tried Bijore’s moisturizer, you’re only hurting yourself. So light, and NO GREASE. Perfect. Smells good, too.

I’ve found that people get really angry when they find out I don’t have much of a cosmetic ritual. I only wear makeup when I’m going out or sometimes when I have a show… maybe twice a week I’ll put on makeup. And I don’t put crazy stuff in my hair everyday, but there are some things that I need to feel pampered. Some things that I need because I love the smell, and some things I need so my skin doesn’t fall off.

pamie’s can’t live without it beauty stuff

Dove Soap (15 years! remember those old ads?)
Johnson and Johnson’s Baby Powder
Pink Eye Shadow
Body Glitter
(I just picked this up and I’m in love–) Old Navy’s Body Shimmer
Bijore Facial Moisturizer
Garden Botanikal’s SPA body scrub
GB’s SPA sea salt scrub
GB’s SPA facial mud mask and hair mud
GB’s SPA sea salt bath soak

Just buy that SPA package. Smells yummy.

So today I’m rested, healthier, and baby smooth. It’s not so hot here in the office, and I’m not a cranky baby. Well, I’m a little cranky, because I’m ready for some sort of vacation to a cold cold place, but other than that I’m doing fine today.

I’m trying to find a good rate for Las Vegas in early January. Does anyone know a good airline/travel agency/person to beg?

Oh, it looks like it’s going to be about $400. That’s way too much, man.

Don’t you hate boring e-mail days? When you get absolutely no good e-mail? We’re having one of those at work today. Bummer.

sing it, sister

pamie tries karaoke. will she ever go back?

I had never tried Karaoke before. My friends had decided that last night was Karaoke night and threatened to never speak to me again if I didn’t go. So I talked Eric into going, and we said we’d be there.

I asked where this place was, and they told me it’s the bar at a motel. I knew I was in for a classy night.

But yesterday afternoon, before plans were finalized, I started to have second doubts. What if I make a total fool out of myself? (Like that’s anything new, I know). But I’ve been in bars that had Karaoke before, and I always felt so sorry for the drunken woman clutching the mic in one hand and a White Russian in the other screaming about “One of these days these boots are gonna walk all over you.” Or it’s some pathetic man trying to pick up chicks by singing “Why don’t we get drunk and screw?”

Welcome to Karaoke, Texas style.

In any event, I started getting cold feet. I did not want to humiliate myself in front of everyone.

And then I got a phone call from my friend. They were the only ones in the bar. Just the eight of them singing song after song, cheering each other on and drinking up a storm. I could hear “Stand By Your Man” playing in the background as my friend urged me to hurry my ass over to the bar.

And Eric and I showed up, and had a fucking blast. It was so funny, like a private party. The bar (inside the motel, mind you) had a couch, so it was almost like we were crashing some party at a house and we got out of control. People were singing song after song. And my nervousness was gone the second I got to sing “Summer Nights” with my friend. I successfully never sang solo all night, picking some great duets and such. Plus I got to sing one of my favorite songs of all time: “Leader of the Pack.”

Everyone got into the singing, and since it was just us, there wasn’t a lot of embarrassment. We were just having a great time. I really didn’t think that I’d have such a great time singing in a bar, but once you get to belt out “I’ve Had the Time of My Life,” you really start looking at this whole Karaoke thing differently.

They kept the bar open for an extra hour for us. We had to have been the most business they’ve had in months.

I felt so good after it was all done. What a stress reliever to sing so loud and for a couple of hours. And all the laughing? If only they could get new music in all the time, we’d probably go back. As it is, we pretty much sang almost everything we wanted to sing, and to quote Eric, “Once every five years is enough.”

But definitely a way to spend a Tuesday night.

So today I’m back at work and I feel terrible. Not because of last night, but some sort of allergies. I felt this way yesterday, but I thought I had a cold. Since I was fine last night and fine this morning until I got to work, there are only two conclusions: I am allergic to something in the air or I am allergic to work. Now most people vote for the latter, but I am sticking to my claim that it is pollen and molds that are making me sick. My head is all stopped up and I keep sneezing and my nose is running and I’m exhausted. I just want to go home and crawl up in the bed and wait for winter.

Like I won’t be bitching about something come wintertime, I know, but I really do like the cold. I love sweaters and cardigans, and cocoa and blankets and such.

Right now I just feel so tired. I’m so tired I can’t believe it. I get tired really easily lately. I wish I just felt better. Do I need to get more sleep? Eat better? Run around more? Probably all three. I have just felt that lately I’m not so much in charge of my life. Other things dictate where I am all day and all night, and I don’t get to just relax. When I get an evening to just relax, I have a hard time just chilling out because I feel this need to clean my house and organize this and that and catch up on all my home things, but I end up just talking on the phone to an old friend who’s been trying to reach me or falling asleep on the couch. It’s terribly frustrating, and I’m not sure how to re-organize my day so I feel that I’m accomplishing all that I need to accomplish.

Oi.

I guess that means that I’m just like everyone else. I want to be a superhero. I want to be a superstar. Not fame or fortune, mind you. I just want to be able to accomplish all I want to accomplish. I want to start writing another play. I want time to write scripts. I want time to think. I’m just so damn busy and when I’m not busy I’m beat. How boring. How boring is that?

But I did have a good time last night, because I didn’t think about all the things I could be/should be doing, but rather, just having fun with my friends. I haven’t really just had a great night out in a while. Sure, I go out all the time, but it’s to rehearse or have writer’s meetings, or catch dinner, or hurry up and eat before the movie starts…which is the worst, because once you finally all decide on a film, there’s never a moment to relax until the movie starts.

What film will we all see? Well, she wants to see this film, but he already saw that one, and this guy doesn’t want to see it at all, but he’d like to see this film, which is okay with everyone but this guy and she suggested this film, but unless we all leave now, we’ll never all get there in time, and I don’t think everyone is home right now to know that we have to leave now, so that leaves us with these two films, and most want to see this one, so we’ll see this one, and the rest will have to deal. So I’ll call everyone and tell them that it’s this film, and tell them where the theater is and make sure that everyone has a ride and knows for sure where we are meeting… let’s just have them meet over here and then we’ll all go at the same time and then we won’t lose each other… but everyone is running so late that I know we’ll miss the previews, and if we miss the previews so-and-so will be mad because we always miss the previews but it looks like everyone’s here, so let’s go… and we get there and some drop the “ticket buyers” off so that the others can go park and the “ticket buyers” stand in line and see that there’s a better film on that they all forgot about, but they don’t know if they can buy tickets to that because they don’t know if everyone wants to see it, so they just buy tickets for the one that they all came to see in the first place, and then they go in to stand in line for food, and of course someone comes in and says, “Did you know we could have seen that other movie?” but no one answers because they are all looking at their watches because they are now missing the previews, but they haven’t been fed. Everyone gets the food and they all walk slowly into the theater reading all the posters along the way and then they start the “Where Shall We Sit” proceedings which look mostly like sheep trying to be herded and everyone is trying to find a row to hold everyone and people are telling us “this seat is taken,” “this row is taken” until you all jam into the front row and have to crane your neck to see and then someone has to sit by this person because they are sharing food and this person wants to sit by this person, but he’s supposed to sit by this person, and then everyone sits down in a huff and starts complaining that they missed the opening credits and then everyone shuts up, watches the film and eats.

and there’s your moment of relaxation.

because as soon as the film is over, it’s who liked the film and who hated the film and who it was that said he knew we should have just gone to see the other film and who’s mad that someone else didn’t like the film, because she probably did like the film but she’s being stubborn and where do we all go now and who’s hungry and–

I never get to breathe.

But I love the movies. I really do. It’s an amazing ritual that we go through every time we want to see a film.

Can you tell I’m not feeling very well? I’m just getting sloppy today. We have a luncheon in a half an hour and I forgot to bring food. Stupid pamie. Now I’ve got to look like the moocher.

i suck at fighting

it’s not something i’m proud of

The art of fighting. I am very, very bad at it.

I always have been, it’s nothing new. I guess I’m getting better though. Eric hasn’t seen the way I used to fight.

I’ll tell you what, though, I’m out of practice. Eric and I rarely have a fight. Sometimes we disagree, and sometimes we are in bad moods, but we very rarely fight. I was just commenting on this to someone last night– Okay, I was practically bragging that we didn’t fight…so what happened when we got home?

You got it. Break out the score cards.

I just get so defensive. I get so surprised that there’s a problem. How can I be so oblivious? What the hell is wrong with me? My mouth and my mind never seem to convene when I’m in an argument. This used to be the death of me in an argument. I had some ugly ones with past boyfriends.

I think: ” Look, obviously we’ve both been under some pressure lately, and it’s coming out in this argument. Now it’s pretty clear that neither of us are mad at each other, but rather just tired from a long day. Let’s take a small break and discuss this over coffee.”
I say: “Oh, and I guess you’re Mr. Perfect?”

I think: “Sweetheart, I know I’ve been a little clingy lately, and perhaps I’m not giving you enough space or room to breathe. I’m just going through a hard time right now and I feel a bit lonely and scared. I just want someone to be there for me when I’m feeling kind of weak.”
I say: “So you hate me, is that it?”

I think: “You’re right, you’re right. I know you’re right.”
I say: “Nuh-uh! I’m so sure!”

I think: “If only we could just give each other a hug and stop fighting everything would be just fine.”
I say: “Don’t touch me.”

I think: “I recognize a pattern in our behavior where we both get angry at each other in this specific situation. Perhaps we should try and avoid being in that situation in the future, or at least work on what it is that is causing us to feel this way.”
I say: “You always do that. I hate that!”

I think: “It really is late. We should get some sleep. We both have work in the morning.”
I say: “I can’t believe you kept me up this late. I’m gonna miss work tomorrow because of you.”

I think: “Damn. He’s got me there.”
I say: “Oh. Excuse me, I forgot you always have to be right.”

I think: “I love you.”
I say: “I mean, I love you, you know, I mean, gah.”

I think: “I have unresolved abandonment issues that I need to work on, and unfortunately you’re seeing this terrible side of me and I’m sorry.”
I say: “So you’re just going to leave, right?”

I think: “I haven’t been spending enough time with you.”
I say: “And you haven’t been letting me spend time with you.”

I think: “This is silly, that we are still arguing this.”
I say: “No, don’t just shrug, tell me what you mean by that!”

I think: “He looks good when he’s mad.”
I say: “Don’t look at me like that. I’m not a child.”

I think: “Perhaps I did something wrong to hurt his feelings. That’s terrible.”
I say: “What? WHAT? What did I do now? Jesus.”

I think: “I can’t believe we are doing this. Why ruin this thing that we have here by being so hateful to each other and hurting each other. We care for each other, for Christ’s sake. We shouldn’t be fighting like children.”
I say: “Whatever. Im so sure.”

I think: “He looks so upset. He must really care about this. I had no idea that he’d be so upset about this.”
I say: “I don’t know why you’re making such a big deal out of nothing.”

I think: “I’m a terrible person. I can’t believe I did that.”
I say: “I forgot! I suck! I’m sorry!”

I think: “I just need some air for a few seconds. It’s getting too mean in here.”
I say: “I’m going to pee, Mr. Knows-when-you-are-sleeping-knows-when-you’re-awake. Is that okay with you? God!”

I think: “I can’t believe he said that to me. That really hurt my feelings.”
I say: “Well, lets take a look at our own shallow little life before we start dissecting mine.”

I think: “I don’t want him to leave.”
I say: “Just go then. Fine.”

I think: “I’m losing this argument.”
I say: “I’m tired. I just want some sleep. I can’t think straight with you saying the same damn things over and over and over.”

And it goes on from there. That’s how to translate Pamie-Fight to English. Like I said, it doesn’t get that bad anymore, but I’ve had some doozy fights.

I’m just feeling a little guilty about last night’s argument because I just get so defensive whenever someone is upset with me. I just freak out, I really do. How do I fix everything as quickly as possible? What should I do? What do I do? I need to just calm down, take a deep breath, and realize that he is not saying that everything is my fault and some of it is indeed my fault and this does not mean the end of the world, but rather just something that every couple does while sorting out their relationship.

But just like George McFly, I’m not very good at confrontations.

you don’t understand my soul

I’m sick today, and staying home from work. I have a terrible headache, and it’s making my jaw ache and food sound disgusting. So, I was watching television, and “The Donny and Marie” show came on. I remember how much I loved them when I was a kid. I had the Donnie and Marie dolls (and to answer your question, Donnie didn’t have underwear on like Ken, he had a large bulge… sort of like Marilyn Manson’s new look.) and I started comparing it to how much I can’t stand them now. Was Donnie always that much of a penis, or is this his new thing? I don’t really remember the show so much from when I was a youngster.

The District Attorney thing is resolved. The person was my makeup artist when I got my headshots done. I guess the Investigator could tell my hesitancy right away on the phone because he goes, “You’re not in any trouble. This doesn’t concern you, we just have a check of yours and we need you to fax in why you wrote it.” Then he gave me a check number that was different from the one on the paper, and I must have sounded suspicious again, because he started explaining what must have happened and “damn-that-secretary.” So I’m off the hook.

So, it’s September 21st…usually around this time I’m a total nutcase. (Old abuse victim talk here, watch out) I used to really have a hard time with September with nightmares and such, but for the past two years I haven’t had a rough time at all. I attribute it to growing up, and putting some of my past behind me, as well as being out of school, where many of my ulcers began, and…well…Eric. He keeps me totally at ease. I feel safe.

But I was cleaning a bookshelf this morning and I noticed some of my old journals from high school… mostly I just wrote poetry in there, but there were some short stories and such… man, it’s bad.
terrible.

So terrible that I know you want to read it. Quit your smiling, you knew I’d share it with you, didn’t you?

I give you these examples not out of ridicule, but rather so you can appreciate how far I’ve come, and thank your deity that you don’t have to read this caliber of material every day. I will keep the writing as is, spelling and punctuation intact, so you too can feel like you’re sitting on my daybed in the middle of the night, pining away for that boy in homeroom.

Ahem.

Here’s a beautiful specimen:

April 24, 1992 I am mesmerized by whispers; Ones that murmur your name with a careless toss. I cling to the sounds with two fists– white knuckles. I am begging to hear more.My favorite word when I was younger was “murmur.” I think it still is my favorite word, I just try not to use it in everything I write. Much like when you were writing essays in class every paper had the word “plethora.”

Let me find a good one here:

Oh yeah. Here we go:

May 17, 1992 If I could harness the fire in the world in a kiss, I would deliver it to you. I want to shower you with all the clean blue rain this earth creates. I want to sprinkle snowflakes on your tongue. I want to paint your room a sunrise, and tuck you in with a sunset. I want to capture nature’s elements and store them in a box for your leisure. You deserve all of the best things this world has to offer.Somehow the Backstreet Boys found my journal and made millions off of it.

Teen angst, anyone?

3 March 1991 Life confuses me. Life is like the biggest poser in the world. It acts like it’s this big deal– it’s the coolest. It’s the best. So you want to be friends with it, get closer to it, so it makes you cool too. You seize life with both hands, expecting it to be this enormous rush and this overwhelming feeling of happiness and you expect the coolness to start to rub off on you. You stick with this new buddy for a while– maybe even years but it seems the longer you hang around, the more fake and superficial it seems. It’s all about status, and who looks superior to whom, and you realize that there are more important things to do. But still, you figure that life is just going through some sort of phase, and you continue to link arms with it.

After a while, life starts to lose its appeal. You’ve stripped away the superficialisy and you find that it is really dull and boring and not much to it.Now, what I like about this piece is obviously I was trying to make some sort of metaphor… for love I can only imagine, but it mostly sounds like “Old people give up.” Here you can see the beginning of my love of a ramble, and my inablility to end a sentence, and to instead keep it going with a comma.

Let’s see what else is here…

HA! Oh, man. I’m already embarrassed:

22 January 1991 It starts at my face. This warm rush trickles to my cheeks and a redness forms. The rush dances– tingling down my spine, following my veins to the tips of my fingers and swirling at the pit of my stomach– making me feel as queasy as that time we rode that roller coaster seven times in a row. My legs go next, feeling like they are caving in and they lose all stability as my toes go numb from anxiety. My hair is standing on end and my fists are clenched and I’m biting my tongue. You must be nearby.And I must look like a wreck when you see me. No wonder you never called or asked me to go with you! My hair would stand on end! I like the use of the word “veins” here, sort of creepy yet sensual. Very Sylvia Plath.

And now a look back at some early pamie poems.

20 October 1987 A chill through the air A nightly breeze. But the stars weren’t there Just the outline of the trees.I was very much into environmental issues, as you can see:

Empty beer cans are all around Empty trash bags litterbugs surroundI used to write this serial when I was a freshman in high school. I had totally forgotten about this. I used to write a chapter a week in a notebook, and the notebook would get passed around to a few of my friends. It was called “Harvey the Double Note,” and in it, you followed a detective on a case. But it was a spoof of detective/crime stories. After a couple of weeks I had strangers stopping me in the halls to ask me when I was going to write the next chapter. Then I got real nervous because I knew a bunch of people were reading it, and I killed off Harvey in a shark accident.

Tee hee hee… here’s a rant:

Things that piss me off 11 April 1991, 9:10 pm Sister recieved $30.00 instead of her normal $20.00 per week allowance $10.00 of which is for lunch money. Note 4 year age difference. Today the aforementioned grounded child proceeded to go malling. She held numerous phone conversations and did not miss one minute of television from 6:00-8:00. She is also entering my room exactly every 3.6 minutes. Remember she is supposed to be in her room reading. She also fit in a video game or two. Please note that none of these utlilities are located in her bedroom wher the “grounding” was to occur. Miss Sister is currently a straight “B” student save for “gym and lunch” as she said, and is rubbing it in quite nicely.then around this there’s some band names (“ministry”, “NIN”, “Jane’s Addiction”) and I’ve written “Everyone lies” in a deep dark marker. Then there’s some drawings of eyes crying and women covering their faces with their hands…

I obviously had absolutely no life back then if I could just follow my sister around and note every time she strayed from being grounded. I imagine myself with a notebook and pen marking down every game she played and exaclty how many minutes she was not in her bedroom. So sad. Note where I mocked her “B” average, because I was always so angry that my grades seemed to be overlooked.

Here’s a good sappy pining poem:

…the wandering Venus 13 August 1992 Come home to me. I can’t stand it here without you. I can’t find the words to say the emotions to feel the songs to sing the dreams to dream without you I am only an empty shell cracking uder the pressure. My Atlas is gone. My Apollo has disappeared. My Prometheus, who brings fire to my eyes and life to my soul is away. I am a wandering Venus, searching, ever searching for her god.I think I did a good job of meshing Greek and Roman mythology, doncha think?

Here’s where I get all deep and shit:

April 26, 1992 “The Confession: I worship not to Gods– My superiors are literary. A pen becomes my cross. My rosary? Sheets of paper. My place of worship changes From a museum to a library. I am silent in either. Respecting the displays of talent. Remnants of souls make me Who I am. Forcing me to reflect on what I once was. I feel reborn. These words and images mold me. I give my confession to the chilled marble steps. Forgive me, for it has been too long since my last confession. Twice I have doubted my worth. Three times my strength has faltered. Once I pretended I was someone that I wasn’t. Four times I tried to conform. I lay my face against the tile. Its energy feeds me. I am stripped of my sin And handed a pen For my emotions to encompass. I need not deities from heaven. I only need the wisdom to know myself To trust myself To be myself To laugh at foolish choices Even if they are my own. The doors close As do my eyes. And internal amen. Woah. It’s like you can see my soul, you know?I used to write in these only when I was in love and it wasn’t mutual. When I had a boyfriend, I only wrote when he was away or mad at me. I wish that I had kept a more accurate journal all these years, but I would always want to write a poem instead.

I wonder what I’ll think ten years from now when I read these journal entries? Will you still laugh with me? Will you still be there? Not likely. But you never know.

Love poems are funny, because sometimes I’ll look back at them and I’ll think, “As corny as that is, it’s truly how I felt back then.”
When you think you’ve invented the phrase, “I feel the Earth move,” you think that you are really speaking from your soul. The deepest, most private parts of you. Then you get a love letter from someone and he starts saying things like, “paint your room in a sunrise” and you realize you’re just another hack angst teen poet and you hide your journal from everyone and mock those that still do it.

When I was a freshman in college a bunch of friends goaded me into reading some of my poetry at a spoken word. (nothing you read here). I can’t believe I did it. I read a few things, and people came up to me afterwards to say how much it made them feel, and when I look at those poems now they seem really petty and catty and childish. I would never do that again. I’m glad I did it when I was younger, because I would feel so dumb and like a big ass poseur if I did it today. Can you imagine? Ugh.