This picture makes me feel stupid, ashamed, then really angry. And yet, at the time, I felt as though it was something I "had to" do. I felt uncomfortable but I did not really voice my discomfort. It's clearly visible in my body language, my gaze is forced downwards, my arms outstretched... I feel sad for the girl in the picture.
I am really conflicted
about how my appearance affects other people's perceptions of me. It is so exhausting to have to constantly decide whether people are really absorbed in what I'm saying because I have a pleasing sort of look to me. I'm not gorgeous. But -- hell -- I'm 25, my tits are perky, and I don't have a third eye and a hunch back. I can clean up, and this is highly pleasing to me. But, I have to say that it spoils everything when, for instance, you want a newspaper article to be about your art ... and you're in more than one picture. Or when you really just want to talk about your art with another artist over coffee ... and they reach across the table and tell you how they regret getting married so young.
I don't want to have saggy tits or a hunch back ... even though it will eventually be the case. But I just ... really wish sometimes that I didn't have to deal with all of this shit. With help from my Other Dad, I'm learning to assert my boundaries much more carefully, "exuding" unavailability and slithering in a handshake where an inappropriate hug may have been attempted, not drinking at art-related functions, which are work functions, at least for me.
But this, my friends, is a double-edged sword.
I'm tall and smart and pretty and confident and ... so obviously I can't get a date. Not even a nip from some guppies here or there, let alone an actual fish. I'm not one to complain about these things. I go to bed and wake up happy every day. Seriously. But heck, how can I go from one extreme to another -- being objectified every time I walk out of the house to not being able to easily, sort of, date around, or whatever people do.
Finished cleaning and re-shelving my collection of 18 used coffee mugs which I'd arranged in my room in a beautiful, multi-colori semi-circle.
Listened to Christmas songs on the radio, sang to John & Yoko as poorly as I could, danced to jingle bell rock.
Listened to a radio show about Soviet Socialist Realism, remembering that I'd once intended to be the authority on Socialist Realist art, with noble plans for a dissertation and a life's work focusing on Aleksandr Deineka.
Pinned my hair using three bobby pins.
Felt really proud for having such nice hair today.
Called my dad to tell him that my car man was ripping us off, after some late-night peripheral research. Was thrilled when he told me that I did good work.
Felt annoyed at being thrilled, still felt proud.
Took an iron supplement and two ibuprofen.
Told my roomate that there would be scones of the blueberry variety, as he made faces at me while brushing his teeth.
Got some more coffee cups out of my room.
Turned on my computer.
Talked to my roomie about my method of not losing eyeglasses (buy new eyeglasses and put them in all of the places where I might need eyeglasses and not have them - purse, computer, bedside)
Did not turn off the radio when Wait, wait! Don't tell me! came on
Butchered some blueberry scones because I'm out of the habit of making them.
Ate two butchered scones.
Set out cans of pumpkin and sweetened condensed milk, brushed the flour on the counter on to the floor which I cleaned yesterday.
Learned some new words.
Turned off the radio which was talking about protests in Egypt and at UC Davis because it made me cry.
Reheated a second cup of coffee, added honey and more cream.
Debated whether I should put my slippers back on.
Checked my email.
Checked my facebook.
Debated whether I should post a picture of pizza and write, "Ceci n'est pas un vegetable, folks," but decided against it when there were no good pictures of pizza and the url's were too long.
Checked out this girl I made out with once on the Facebook, realizing that I would be happy to be a lesbian if it didn't mean that I had to be in a relationship with a girl. Also wondered to myself why so many girls in Pittsburgh like knitting and cats.
Decided that I had no desire to participate this morning, and wondered if what I was feeling was loneliness, despite the fact that I don't feel unpleasant or that I need anything at all, aside from my coffee and cream. And then wondered whether if I wasn't lonely, whether or not I'd grow to be so, and if I am lonely, whether it would eventually become unpleasant and whether I was capable of growing to be bitter in my diagnosed or undiagnosed loneliness as I suspect people do. I have two grandmothers who have lived alone for a quarter century, have only had sex with one other human being ever, and both of them seem to be very well-occupied and generally healthy in the head.
I don't think I'm lonely. I'm certainly never bored. The world is such a mess. I'll have to get cranberries and do more scones soon. My coffee is lukewarm.
I can't believe that I failed to get this guy's name...the piece on the far wall is called "Remember me at sunset" and I seriously died when I saw it....LOVE it. But that's life, easy come, easy go ; )
I like this guy, but I mostly just like his piece...of art!! What were you thinking? This is the one.
I also recently got a bit of a crush on this guy. But I really only like that one piece, and the title, and everything about it. His other pieces I am not wild over. Love him, but he's nothing new. I've just been stalking him a bit on the internet as I do. Hm...wondering if I can find an art crush who I like EVERYTHING about...oh, yeah!!! My art husband, sigh. Of course there are others, but my husband allows it, and that's why we have such a great relationship...
I've been poring over pages of art on the internet -- on this site VVORK -- which is so awesome, if only because it has helped me understand that there is a big world out there, that just wants more art, more art, more, more, more. MORE. MORE! No limits. Wonderful.
Sometimes in Pittsburgh I forget that and then I remember about the internet. I've been trying to be diligent about it...every day...seeing new art...on the internet. It's great. Thank you, internet. The internet is like my guilty pleasure the hot guy at the grocery store checkout...The one I don't want to check out, but sometimes you just can't help it!
Anyway...those are art crushes (well except for the internet). Purely intellectual/aesthetic.
I also have a real crush. On a real boy, which never happens for me. (Like, I could count on one hand the number of real crushes I've had my whole life). And nothing happened between us or will in any kind of foreseeable future. But the feeling was enough to kind of cup in my hands before I let it go again. Oop.
It was a reminder that such a thing could be had, cupped, had.
I've been doing a bit of unraveling lately, and it feels good. The good kind of unraveling, you know? It's hard for me. Working on it some more.
I've spent a lot of time shying away from political stuff. I'm not particularly compelled to follow it. Which is not to say that I am not interested in "the world" and "what's going on," but it all just feels so burdensome at times.
I tend to also feel very stupid in political conversations. I never quite know "the issues," but rather rely on pretty intense feelings one way or the other, regardless of how much or how little I actually know. Perhaps I am lazy. Perhaps I just don't prefer the media in which various issues are housed. Perhaps I just get absorbed in the details of everyday life; the little trials and triumphs of miniature interactions, and that experience is what helps me feel as though I already understand everything else that is going on -- enough, enough. There is just a lot of pain. That a very dear person to me had for weeks been fighting for his life in the hospital blighted out much else of my needs and interests, or the worlds' needs and interests...But that was because I think we all have a threshold for what we can endure either intellectually or emotionally at any given time...
I'm getting away from myself.
In any case, I always have opinions, and when I feel as though I am in a situation where they will be nurtured, further informed or respected, I share them. I guess that's why this blog exists, and why it's still semi-secret to most of the world.
I think this post may be counted as some kind of addendum to the one about the Occupy movement, of which I was relatively critical....maybe it's a separate idea. In any case...I clearly haven't fully formulated my opinions and am blabbering on and on attempting to forgive myself in advance for saying something that may sound awfully naive or dull... So -- forgive the recitative, I'll get to it.
I just watched a commercial for Chase Bank, which has recently launched what they're calling a 100,000 jobs mission, to employ veterans of our epic wars. Wars that they probably helped fund in many different ways. Wars that we have been fighting for close to half of my worldly existence. Oh why, oh why, oh why, oh why, oh why.
It just felt so utterly insulting -- that a WAR whose real costs we cannot even begin to imagine might be reduced to some marketing ploy for a big bank. The veteran in the commercial ties his shiny black shoes. He smiles. His teeth are white. His shirt is blue. We'll all eventually do the same, clean up, move on. Erect some structure in ten years that will help us all to Never Forget. That's the benefit of having our wars overseas. They can be profitable and compelling, but remain relatively unobtrusive. We can call ourselves civilized, and pity the others.
We have food in our supermarkets. We have our little homes to go to at night.
I was mostly shocked and ashamed that I am a product of this massive dupe. I may call myself liberal or educated or informed. And, yeah, power to the people, sure. But I have allowed myself to think of this whole conflict as headlines to avoid or not avoid. I am completely unable to engage with the reality of this situation and I am so, so ashamed.
On our way to the hospital, I was talking to my Other Dad about war -- how -- for all of our lives pretty much, our country has been in a perpetual state of war. How -- when my roommates play their war video games it takes thirty seconds to "respawn" as a penalty for being "killed." Meanwhile in real wars, real people are dying, and millions are being displaced. MILLIONS.
I talked about this video game habit as though it was distant from my own behavior, distasteful, reprehensible. But I doubt that what I have been doing is any better. Am I to blame, or am I just being massaged into complacency like everybody else...
It's just that this is so big, beyond our country, beyond politics, beyond oil. For me, it seems like this is what humans feel compelled to do. Is war a human need? Where does it come from? How does it get to be like this?
It's something that I've been thinking about -- will continue to think about. Don't know what I think about -- much.
What I do know is this: my heart aches. It aches for this country, it aches for the world and all of the little animals called humans that are clawing their way through it. I guess that aching sensation is all that I'm capable of, at least for now.
I'm critical of these movements, but most of all I'm just critical of the massive abstraction that we're all sort of invested in ... abstractions called freedom and country and will and ... They strike me as little stories that we tell ourselves to make the day day and the night night.
Ugh. I don't know. I just wanted to say that my heart just aches sometimes. As I sort of breathe in, and hold my breath, suddenly overwhelmed by all of it. It'll go away tomorrow. I'll want coffee, I'll have to edit my CV, there will be an email.