Last night, you guys, I passed out at 8:30pm. Seriously. But then I woke up again and ate an apple and fell back asleep at 10. I slept so hard. I deserved it. I have this thing, during the week, where I sleep maybe 7 hours a night if I am lucky, reasoning that it's the work week, and that I have to work (in many ways), and that I will be able to sleep on the weekend.
But then the weekend comes, and I don't want to sleep because there's so much fun to be had, and I figure I'll use the work week as the time to catch up on my sleep. But then that never happens, and I progressively turn into a zombie (albeit a very productive and popular one) and find myself on Sunday afternoon, nearly comatose, comparing two identical pairs of black socks, one in each hand, looking back and forth between them in the harsh fluorescent light at Uniqlo, trying to decide if they are the same color. They were. I bought both. The very tiny last bit of my focus was spent up buying socks yesterday afternoon. If you know me well enough to see me without my shoes on (many people do) you probably know how badly I’ve needed new socks.
Anyway this weekend was rad. Saturday was this fantastic symposium on AIDS and Literature at the New School, organized by the inimitable Dale Peck. I was so honored to be included in the event. It was totally surreal to be on a panel with, say, Amy Scholder, and be discussing the books I had read in high school which began to teach me about AIDS, about queer identity in America, about culture, about life, and then realize that basically all of the books I am talking about, so many of the touchstones in my, let’s say, “journey” have been published by her. It’s nuts. So many really amazing people involved in the event. Including, of course, the Grand Supreme Diva Herself, Miss Larry Kramer. It was so insane. He was very sweet, of course, and read from his new book in-progress, about the American psyche, history, identity. It’s like he’s speaking through a loudspeaker. I felt very humbled and thrilled to be part of the event.
Afterward I hustled myself over to Public Assembly where I was go-go dancing at QxBxRx. It's the second-to-last party. I'm very sad about this. I've been go-go dancing at this party for almost five years. That is significant. My feelings about go-go dancing, which I've never, really, written anything about, are kind of still forming. I keep talking about how this means that I will have to retire from go-go dancing but I'm not entirely sure that's true. But mostly true. I really wanted to be a go-go dancer in the first place because of the kids I saw dancing at the Rated X Panty Party at Opaline on Ave. A in the summer of 2005 (remember?) who seemed like they were having so much fun. And then, of course, because Lady Miss Kier had been a go-go dancer, much for the same reasons I was, I think: you get to dance at nightclubs and get paid for it. Such an awesome experience. Really trippy. So anyways second-to-last QxBxRx was fun. Stayed up too late but what's new?
The two big new pieces of information today are that I'm doing this really amazing reading tomorrow in NYC! At the New School! at 8pm! It's FREE!
Such an honor to be opening for Cindy. DORIS has meant a lot to me for a very long time. I'll be reading my new story, RINGO, which is going to be in the newest issue of birdsong. So please come to the reading tomorrow night!
Okay, and the last thing I wanted to write about is (duh) Erin Markey. She's in San Francisco doing her show "The Dardy Family Home Movies by Stephen Sondheim by Erin Markey". It's a fantastic show, and I hope a lot of people get to see it. Erin was recently the topic of a really amazing essay by Michelle Tea. It feels really vindicating, somehow, to see someone as brilliant and articulate as Tea pay such close attention to Erin's work. I'm really excited by the prospect of Erin becoming a household name, and I want to run around high-fiving everyone. Michelle Tea really gets Erin, and is able to convey her genius effectively She navigates the synergy of Erin's multiple aesthetics and tactics, and gives her the credit she deserves. Erin's a genius, the essay is genius, it's great.
There's also a really cute interview with Erin in the SF Bay Guardian. Slightly less effusive, it does give a good sense of Erin's sly sense of humor, and her intelligence, and makes me want to go see the show. This interview really struck me, though, for another reason. Not just because I know Erin (bragging: I totally do).
In 1998, when I was 14, I read an issue of the SF Bay Guardian that had features of Beth Lisick and Miranda July, and it introduced their work. I ended up going to see July perform at what had been an abandoned movie theater in Berkeley (MeMe America, Tracy from Tracy +the Plastics' first band, opened). I went with my mom. July was, I think, maybe 24 years old. I thought that was so fucking old. Anyway it really blew my mind, and Miranda July's early records absolutely changed the direction and course of my life and made me want to be a performer, really, apart from doing theater in school. It was very inspiring. Beth Lisick I also mention because I was, after reading the Guardian piece, obsessed with her band, the Beth Lisick Ordeal, and really loved their CD, Pass. I still think she's genius and I got a chance to meet her last year when she came to NY and did a performance with (duh) Erin.
Anyway. The point is that I hope more young isolated queerdos are reading their free weeklies and finding out about people like Erin and getting the inspiration and permission they need.