Three working song titles for unwritten songs


Is it okay to say I've been sick? Is that an okay reason to explain why I've taken so long to get back to people.

I wanted to update about a bunch of things but I was sad and weird recently. I guess it's been two weeks. More? I played a bunch of shows, they were pretty much fantastic. I've had some difficult moments. What are you going to do. I want to catch up but I can't catch up. I was talking to my shrink, talking to my friends about how I don't want to blog about anything, I don't want to talk about anything, I don't want to do anything until I can resolve my feelings around this person I knew who passed away recently. We weren't close, I wouldn't even call us friends. It feels disrespectful and invasive to memorialize them, to make their death about me. Let's just say there was someone I knew and looked up to and they're gone and although we were very far from close or intimate in any way, although we only met each other a handful of times, and although I've unfortunately lost a few people I was actually close to, this person's passing really threw me. It made me feel like I had nothing to talk about except how sad I was they're gone, and I had no right to say that at all, so why even start. I've put a lid on this for the time being. Know that I was thinking about some things, but decided to wait until I had a real thing to say about them.  Is this what we mean when we say "holding the space"?

I wasn't sick, I was sad. I was just disappointed. I was going through some stuff I made a few years ago and was totally, totally blown away by how different the voice of the person making it was. I seemed so immature! I think that's nice; progress. Incremental development. But still, I feel like such a fucking baby sometimes when it comes to disappointment: I didn't get this thing I talked myself into wanting and so I keep just turning it over and over in my head.

It's so fucked up and beautiful how disappointment is really just a clarification of desire. How pain is a necessary component of pleasure. How one's ability (okay, my ability) to desire and work towards intimacy is only understood by the constant return to loneliness.

I guess we don't like that word.


The thing of, like, being the one that you know but don't feel good about. You don't want to let me know, you don't want to just say, or just thank me, for doing something you liked. It's like-- I was out with an artist friend of mine who is the same age as me, and we ran into a younger artist person and I introduced them to my friend, I didn't know if they'd formally met before. And the younger artist was very sweet, and told my friend how they'd seen their work when they first moved to the City and they were really into it. I didn't actually hear this, I wasn't listening in on their conversation (I was talking to someone else) but it is that thing of, like, that's really sweet and I felt kind of jealous. Not jealous; it was another object lesson in something I'm doing/not doing or being/not being. I don't have those conversations with people, you know? I'm not the one that, even were it true in such a situation, that you would want to tell that to. I am the Bad Cop. I'm the person who people say is stuck up, snobby, an asshole, because I didn't remember someone's name after meeting them once before, at a nightclub. You know, meanwhile, the person who's name I don't remember doesn't actually know anything about me beyond my name. It's a straw man thing. I feel bad. This is pessimism taking over. I guess it's not how I actually feel but like finding evidence of a dark hunch.

Bad Cops and Dark Hunches. Do you think in terms of song titles?

No, I just mean that I feel like I'm stuck in this role I've adoped for myself where I have to be the Bad Cop. Where I have to be the one most uncomfortable, most impossible to like person in the room. It's stupid. I often feel like this is the only way I get places, is as a punching bag. "Well, we'll need someone at the party to be really resentful of, let's get Billy." Jesus doesn't want me for a sunbeam he wants me for a scapegoat. This is gross, maybe. A running list of demands, of complaints. Why do I do this to myself. "Surely, you think, they must need someone to be the catalog model for these dunce hats. You look so good in them. You really do."


This has been coming up a lot lately, for me. The idea of wholesale versus retail pricing. I'd be lying if I didn't admit that part of this is the fact that department stores are having their summer sales, and my gadfly self is always on some kind of calculation. Surely, the t-shirt that sells for $70 when 70% off-- it must cost much much less than that to manufacture it, right? What is the best deal I can get? How long should I wait to buy something. This thing of buying in bulk, calculating the cost. The more you buy, the lower the price. This is the thing of wholesale that gets me. If you bought enough of them, shouldn't they be free? No, it's about getting to the absolute minimum with the supplier. A more perfect transaction. A negotiation. There's the inherent value in something, and the inherent value that only we know and keep to ourselves.

I suppose what I'm thinking about, again, is worthiness. You can only stand up for yourself, demand more for yourself, if you think you're worth it. I'm just so skeptical of feeling worthy, because if I was it'd be different, materially. It would feel different, right? To be good, to be happy, to have your shit together. Surely, it must feel different. Surely if I feel so fucked up, it must mean that I'm not actually good. It's that thing of accepting the face value. If they charge so much for it, it must be worth it. But of course this is a lie. The price is part of the design, right?

And then again, that truism: Nobody pays retail. You know what? I'm a nobody. I pay retail. I don't want something to exist just for the sake of making people look stupid. If those are the stakes (and they nearly always are) then I volunteer to be the stupid person. I volunteer to overpay. I volunteer to test the plank; let me see if I can bounce off of the bottom of the ocean. I want to be the one. Why, why am I so theoretically interested in suffering, in being an example of badness. I'm not a superhero, more like a minor hero. A virtuous villain sidekick. I'm that one who eats the poison so no one else has to. And it sucks. I just want someone to share it with, to remind me I don't have to.


Night time is a feeling

Y'know it's funny: it doesn't feel like morning. It still feels like last night. Is night time a feeling?

I got my iPod fixed by a shoddy intern. It works, it turns on. It plays. What does not work so great is the Pause button. The Stop. The Brakes.

Had such a fantastic and lovely time at the Lambda Literary Awards last night. I'm like: Did I embarrass myself? Was I awful last night? Maybe the last night/nighttime mood is because I'm still drunk? No. It is a fact that in the Summertime, it's always the same time of day. What time is it? Sun.

On the subway, there was an empty seat in front of me and I thought about sitting but then looked around. Behind me there was a nun in a gray habit, a gray sweater and gray skirt, etc. Gray hair. She was standing and I figured I oughtn't take the seat, she should have it. But she didn't take it and I wondered if this was a God thing, the suffering or like denial stuff. Was I supposed to offer it to her? She eventually sat down in front if me and stated off into space, sort of accidentally looking really intense.

I mean how bad could I have been? Don't answer that. Sister Pico was one of the illustrious presenters, and was charming and handsome and the ceremony was just lovely. I was so thrilled to be his guest and get to schmooze with the literati and hang out, it was wonderful. At the after party we hung out with the Bureau guys and this rad new Sarah girl and I felt like: I'm unconsciously flirting with everyone and everything. The hors d'oeuvres. Not because I'm a creep just because I suddenly felt so good and optimistic after having felt kind of rough before. Now I feel great, you know?

Did my little office commuter comfort routine. The fruit guy, the muffin guy, yogurt. I'm a Leo. I am a lion. I am a creature of habit. And we creatures of habit are not history's favorite children. Our loyalty is not rewarded. Time does not withhold his cruelty from the creatures of habit. The world seldom rewards you for staying the same. Consistency is not a virtue, it is a fairy tale. I'm getting a little bit different, though, too. 


Three Fate

I've been racking my brain. I'm a detective. I collect clues. I look for hidden signs. I feel like this is the thing about being into Astrology. I see constellations. I notice patterns. Last night I felt pretty rough, underslept. I felt exhausted. I did my usual Saturday routine: I went to the gym and I got a smoothie and I went out for dumplings and I went window shopping. I saw that famous clothes designer Raf Simons while I was out browsing. I came home to nap and I felt awful, really exhausted. I rallied with my buddies downstairs and we got quite a bit turnt and went out to this new headshop. Paps had seen they had a kitten and so she'd been hanging out there and we went and met the kitty, her name is Yemen. We went out to a bar in Bushwick to celebrate Anthony's birthday, it was cute. Max B. and some friends were there, we had fun. Someone mentioned this guy-- had we heard of him, was he cool. He was my ex, I guess. I could have kept my mouth shut but I didn't. And I feel only a little guilty. Not for hating him or that not being a secret about me but just for, I dunno. Admitting it. He admits it, to everyone (our other friend present seemed to know). It's just like oh yeah, him. I never thing about it and didn't today.

The night before, I had gone out to see Ben's fantastic new one-man show, a work in progress about struggling with money and desire and power and identity, and it was so great. Really fantastic and smart and exciting and timely and engaging and heartbreaking. I'm so excited for the show to actually happen, which it will happen at the end of the summer. Afterward I went out for a drink with Mike and Jill and PLD. Then I headed downtown to see Cole Escola's new show at Duplex, which was totally awe-inspiring and hilarious and nuts. I'm so inspired and excited by Cole's work. I think history will show that Cole is really one of the smartest and most creative minds working in New York performance, cabaret, theater, etc. He's on some totally futuristic level. It's really fantastic to see. After the show we went to Boiler Room and then to the Metropolitan and I hung out for a bit, all night. Kind of awesome and kind of depressing.

Facing a lot of changes. All new room mates as of today, and my residency is ending and my zine is out. I wanted there to be more fanfare about these things, in a way, but I'm skeptical of that desire. Not like drama, but like... I wish I could find a way to acknowledge and live up to the chaos and weirdness I feel inside right now.

I guess I learned some things about myself this week. I'm a little (but only a little) more mature than I used to be, but I'm frustrated and perplexed by disappointment and rejection. And desire. I'm doing an excerpt/remix from ENCOURAGER on Friday night and I was watching the video of the show, to re-learn certain things. And I thought, wow, I was so nervous that night. I'm watching myself freak out. But I think I did a good job. I'm also struck by, how with ENCOURAGER but also MAPPLETHORPE, the task I set for myself was kind of about being crazy. I feel like I'm watching a crazy person. I did what I needed to do and I wouldn't take any of it back, but I'm just trying to find a way to neatly sum up this chapter. I needed to do some kind of weird and crazy stuff, I guess.

I thought I was much more patient than I am. I thought I was a lot more horrible, and ugly, and unloveable than I am. I thought I was definitely stupider than I probably am. I thought that if I didn't have it then it wasn't mine to have, that I didn't deserve it, and that lusting after it was just a form of delusion, of suffering. And it is, I stand by all that. But, I don't know. I guess I just didn't believe that I deserved to be a person, to be dynamic, to make mistakes, to change. I would counsel other people to be well-rounded, accept their flaws and their strengths. The artists whose work I really love, people like Kathleen Hanna, make artwork specifically and explicitly about being a real human being who changes their mind and thinks about things. I just couldn't let myself go there, I guess. But so then I feel like I made these things to find like a back door in. I was like: OK what would it look like if I really didn't have that and couldn't but had to do XYZ without it?

I went to the BBQ at Metropolitan by myself today. It was just okay. I saw some people I know and we said hi. I saw this guy I used to hang out with sometimes and he was with his much younger new boyfriend necking. I saw, like, one million gay dudes I don't know. Who cares. I feel like there's a lot out there but it's not "for me". I feel like I only want abstract things: Oh I wish I was the one he was texting late at night on Saturday night to come over and have sex with him. I think. I wish I was the one he was excited to see. I think I wish I was the one people couldn't get enough of. But I dunno. I kinda can't go there. I wish things were different, I guess. But I think that's silly: we're living in the best of all possible worlds. I wish I had a little bit more romance or something, I guess, in my life. I would not have admitted this any time in the last probably three or four years. But yeah. I dunno. It feels like admitting weakness, or defeat. And I'm so picky! What to do. It is summertime right now, though. After all. I just feel like I'm stuck in this rut of this same thing happening over and over. One time, many many years ago, when I lived in the other room in this apartment (so, I guess, 2005?) my homegirl Cotton was over and we were partying after I got off of work at my temp job, it was great. He'd have the party all laid out for me when I got home. We bought forties. And we met up with this guy I was kind of dating and went to the bar, and it was like, the guy was lovely but clearly a player and I was obviously clingy and nuts. And we got on the bus, but the guy didn't, he was like "I'll meet you there" or something, it was weird. And I said: "Cotton, what do you think he meant by that? Do you think he likes me or do you think he's just like... hanging out and getting off on the fact that I like him?" and Cotton said, very sagely as the way only she can: "I think the real question is: Why do you fall for guys who play games with you?" And she was so right. Not that people are playing games with me, but part of it is like, yeah, why do I put myself in these positions? It's hard to know what position you're in. I think it's always good to try. I think it's always good practice to tell someone how you feel about them (if you like them) and make yourself vulnerable. That's always a sum total good experience. But then it's like, I sometimes find myself (I've talked about this before) putting myself in these positions where it's like I'm being tested. Where I am constantly, like, trying to win someone or prove something or like be something. And that part sometimes sucks.

I was sad so I made this playlist with sad songs. All the ones I'm normally too scared to listen to because they're too sad. Sometimes it feels good though.

Thinking a lot about California. I'm planning a trip to the west coast later this summer.