And I Got What I Got All Despite You…

Dear Baby Hipsters,

While I appreciate you bringing The Outsiders back into the cultural rotation with your sharp fashion sense, I hope that you understand how wearing matching outfits(tight black shirt, dark denim) may make people think you are venue security. The angry, bewildered expressions you had plastered on your faces during the entirety of the concert are usually reserved for the movie theater. People aresupposed to get excited at a concert. I know how this can seem confusing, being that your first experience with concerts was in a movie theater (Hannah Montana: The Movie), but we are witnessing one of the most talented musicians in history play live.

I understand that you were watching Zach and Cody Suite Life during the height of The White Stripes’ popularity. I totally get that it may have been a bit of a turn-off to witness a 32-year-old freak out over a guy that has only put out two albums, but did you really need to block my every effort to dance my way on stage? OK, so I wasn’t that aggressive, but you did totally dance-block me.

To the pansexual love triangle situated in front of me-

I applaud and even encourage your open-minded approach to sexuality. May I also say that I am genuinely happy for you and your recent legal status – drink away! But the Jack White concert is not the place for your hysterical dramatics, nor is it appropriate to involve a near-by stranger (me). The first time that you accidentally groped me, I forgave it, because we were in tight quarters, but it was not okay to continue caressing me. Your girlfriend got mad and “accidentally” elbowed me in the chest at least twice every fifteen minutes, and made it a point to prove that she didn’t see me standing there. I was standing so close to her that I could follow the lines of her DIY haircut, but I guess her peripheral vision is impaired.

Maybe it was my fault for focusing all of my anticipation on this one concert. If we are being honest, I envisioned this concert as my Courtney Cox/Bruce Springsteen moment. At the very least I hoped for an autograph, despite my lack of VIP passes.

To the tiny dread-locked young ladies who insisted on screaming Finding Nemo quotes in my ear during Jack White’s adorable introduction to Sugar Never Tasted So Good –

Didn’t someone at some point teach you that it is rude to talk while others are talking? I understand that you may have gotten angry at Jack White when he stated “ get your shit together hipsters”, but did you have to whip your heavy dreads against my back? Yes, that dirty look I kept turning around to give you was genuine, and you need to learn to take a hint.

To the drunken young couple who snuck down from the cheaper seats to cut directly in front of me and my husband-

I certainly encourage sneaking closer to the stage at any concert, and the audacious transplant was nothing short of impressive. Next time, though, consider that one of you is six-foot six, and that you effectively block the entire view of people standing behind you. I apologize for getting physical, and elbowing my way around you. I also apologize for yelling at my husband to do the same, but I seriously doubt you notice. I understand that Seven Nation Army may be your song as a couple, but this is not the prom. This is neither the time nor the place for slow-motion making out.

I’m not saying that I am Jack White’s biggest fan, I am not that delusional. I am, however, probably his only fan who got back into playing the cello in hopes that some day I would make it to his recording studio in Nashville. Of course he will pop in “just to jam a bit”, and will quickly realize that we have a musical future together. The exchange will go a little something like this:

JW: “ Has anyone ever told you that you could pass for my sister?”

me: “ Of course, many times.” (this may have only been in my head, but still)

JW: “ Would you like to join me on tour?”

me: “ Absolutely. Do you mind if my husband comes along? He plays the drums and will let us dye his hair black.”

JW: “ I like it.”

Okay, I’m getting off topic. Despite all of your attempts, I still had an awesome time, but I wish I could have stayed in my happy place during the whole concert. I will get over it though, because that is what my generation does best.




It’s a mighty big world, some of it I’ve seen…

Truth is stranger than fiction, but it is because Fiction is obliged to stick to possibilities; Truth isn’t.
Mark Twain

I can remember the insufferable drive from Maryland to Maine when I was a kid, and having to escape the noise of family chaos or boredom of scenery. Back then we didn’t have portable DVD players or Ipods, but it didn’t matter. I had my books and I devoured one right after another. My aunt warned me on one particular trip(when I was on my third book in a row), that I needed to stop and give my eyes a break our I would get car sick;but I was resilient and didn’t listen, for it had never happened before, and finding out what happened in the next chapter was more important. At the next next rest stop, I got out of the car and instantly proved her right.
It didn’t deter me from getting back in the car and picking my book back up. Fiction is and always will be a wonderful means of escape, and that is why it is so important. Don’t get me wrong, non-fiction has it’s place. But fiction gives you the opportunity to escape the drama at work, take you away from the reality of any situation.
My book is going on a “blog tour” of sorts, and I will be featuring some fellow writer’s work on here. I think that is important that writers support one another in every avenue, because books are becoming a rarity. As a society we are so busy we tend to take the movie over the book. Let’s preserve the written word.

Reading furnishes the mind only with materials of knowledge; it is thinking that makes what we read ours.
John Locke

Check out the wonderful blog event!

What’s Your Story,Morning Glory?

So one blog that I follow is run by a particular literary agent that I stalk respect, Jenny Bent; and she posted something interesting recently. She spoke of how many stories end up in the slush pile, and really got to the bottom of why these novels get passed on representation.

When you are querying an agent you only have a few paragraphs or pages to hook their interest. Same goes for when a customer is looking at a book for purchase at Barnes&Noble, or online at Amazon. If they aren’t hooked within the first few pages, it is safe to say that they won’t be purchasing the book. Jenny Bent suggests starting your novel when your character’s life changes forever-or when it begins. That is to say, the moment when nothing will ever be the same for your protagonist.

I want to feel connected to your protagonist, to fall in love a little with him or her in the first few pages. But if the protag is telling me their history from fourth grade up, or if they spend five paragraphs walking down a road for no apparent reason, then they’re not really telling me anything, and I’m not going to invest my emotions and want to follow them along.- taken from Bent on Books

Well, this got me thinking…this pertains to life as well. Think about when you first meet someone: a new coworker, a new in-law, possible new friend, in any social setting. This person asks you the inevitable, ” Where are you from? What do you do? What’s your story?”

I know that I have been guilty of the over-share in the past, especially during awkward silences at parties. I have seen the eyes glaze over. The only time I can truly say that I have received genuine interest in a reciprocal manner is in the beginning of new love. So what time and embarrassing situations have taught me is to basically give people my highlights. No one needs to know the entire history of why my family lives across the universe,or why I don’t eat red meat, or why I am half-alien (ha,caught you glazing over).  When someone prods for more information, I decidingly make my story more colorful.

So the next time you are telling your story, maybe leave out all of the mundane details, and try to include some that may animate someone else’s day.


“It’s not true. Some of us have great stories, pretty stories that take place at lakes with boats and friends and noodle salad. Just no one in this car. But, a lot of people, that’s their story. Good times, noodle salad. What makes it so hard is not that you had it bad, but that you’re that pissed that so many others had it good.”

As Good As It Gets

(one of the greatest movies ever)


If you can’t be with the one you love…

Okay, I know your mind goes quickly to cheating when you hear the words to that song. After I just spent four days in a hospital (don’t worry,this is not unusual for me, it’s just been awhile), I have come to startling revelations.

A person tends to lose their usual temperment once everything they love is take away from them; food,coffee, sleep, and normal contact with your husband. I’m not saying I love those things in that order, but like I mentioned, you start to lose rational after some time.

But something else happens. You get to a point where you have surrendered to your new surroundings, and all of a sudden, a certain level of clarity is achieved. Honesty takes on a whole new meaning. You realize that there really are only basic needs that have to be met, and it shouldn’t take a rocket scientist to get certain things completed. All cards on the table, I may have gotten a little short with some “incompetent” people. The shocking thing is, I didn’t feel bad about it, because it was like I suddenly saw the world in a new light.

What I did realize is that lucky for me, I do have some very reliable people in my life, who don’t crumble under pressure.Had it not been for  my husband’s assistance,I probably would’ve been escorted off of the premises. I guess a little mandatory time-out from everything that we hold “dear” can do us some good. Of course, I hope it not in the form of you going to the hospital.


By the way, if you want to help find a cure for Crohn’s check out this site.

Quarter Life Crisis

Artwork done by Sabrina Johnson

Quarter Life Crisis

While I am currently working on my second novel, and it is what I truely consider a labour of love, I have this weight on my shoulders…my first novel. I wrote this years ago, it was rejected a ton, probably for good reason,but it was my first project that I actually completed without throwing it away in the middle(which I am prone to do).

I thought it would best to just move on and keep working on my current novel;but after reading many comments in writer group boards that I belong to I made a decision to e-pub it. I figured that at least it would be out there to read, for when I am FINALLY done this second project. Maybe something good will come of this,maybe it won’t. But what could it hurt? So that is basically where my mind is on this. I know that Quarter Life Crisis is raw, rough, and personal. My hope is that everyone just takes it for what it is.

I have traveled half the world to say, You are my muse

In Stephen King’s book,On Writing, King goes into the importance of a muse. His muse happens to be guy, who lives in the ground, he’s a basement guy. King makes a point that you have to “descend to his level,and once you get down there you have to furnish an apartment for him.”
Basically what Stephen King is saying is that you can not expect your muse to do all the work for you; a muse isn’t going to magically make you create something amazing. A muse is someone or something that inspires you creatively, and it can change throughout time, or remain the same for some artists. Woody Allen is famous for his obsessions with certain actresses for periods of time, resulting in some great movies. Shy by nature, Allen prefers to study the actresses’ work before meeting them. When he actually does a face-to-face interview; it is very quick and impersonal, because Woody prefers to observe her natural presence over getting to know her. Woody Allen has said in interviews that he has to “ have a crush” on his leading lady.
Sometimes finding a muse is so difficult, that you have to resort to using yourself. Frida Kahlo once said,  “I paint myself because I am so often alone and because I am the subject I know best.” From her tumultuous relationship with fellow painter Diego Rivera sprang controversial art from  both artists, but most of her pain was reflected in self-portraits that are still revered today.
Marie-Therese was seventeen when she was approached on the street by Picasso, who told her that she had an interesting face and offered to do a portrait of her, but she had no idea who he was. Picasso was forty-five at the time and married. Marie-Therese agreed to meet him, and their love affair continued in secret, thanks to the house Picasso purchased across the street from his marital home. Things remained under wraps for a few years until Picasso’s wife,Olga, learned of Marie-Therese’s pregnancy from a third party and moved to the south of France( but did not divorce him). Picasso’s appreciation for Marie-Therese’s beauty resulted in over eighty paintings, sculptures, and drawings. The decade-long love affair came to screeching halt when Marie-Therese found out that Picasso had fallen in love with French photographer Dora Maar. When the ladies accidentally ran into each other in his studio, Picasso asked them, “Why don’t you fight for me?” The two ladies wrestled, much to the artist’s amusement. Marie-Therese was always portrayed as blonde,beautiful, and bright in Picasso’s work; while Dora was portrayed as the dark woman, crying and in pain.
One dark woman who has been instrumental in both the literary and musical worlds is Patti Smith. In 1967 Patti Smith moved to New York city and met Robert Mapplethorpe one fateful night. They had an instant connection that resulted in a  five-year  romantic relationship (before Mapplethorpe came to terms with his homosexuality), and a fiercely loyal friendship that would have lasted a lifetime, if it hadn’t been for his untimely death. They were each other’s muse: he always pushed her to do more artistically, and was the first one to encourage her to sing; she was always pushing him to pick up a camera instead of trying so hard to create the perfect image out of raw materials(he was resistant to this idea for some time). Though they both struggled financially, they made invaluable connections while staying at the Chelsea Hotel, and always made sure to promote each other’s work whenever the opportunity was presented. Even after they broke up and went their respective ways, they remained “soul mates” and continued to support each other. Patti Smith went on to be labeled as the “Godmother of Punk”,   created hits such as “Because the Night” and “People Have the Power”, and collaborated with a plethora of rock’s greatest legends. Smith is also an accomplished author, but she attributes her musical success to Robert’s initial prodding. Robert Mapplethorpe became famous for his provocative, yet compelling photographs that can be seen in the most major museums in the world. His understanding of the human body and use of space and light has influenced many photographers, and his legacy will continue to inspire, thanks to The Robert Mapplethorpe Foundation.
I had planned on going into all of the women who inspired rock legends, and what songs came of those collaborations, but I feel that this blog may be dragging a bit. The point is, that a muse doesn’t always have to be the love of your life, or your best friend. Sometimes it can be the form of a song, a painting, or even your favorite beach. Whatever the case, find your muse, put it in that apartment, and make it comfortable, because you have some work to do.

You Give Love A Bad Name

See if I care
And see if I stand firm or if I fall
Cause in the back of my mind,
and on the tip of my tongue
is the answer to it all…

And everybody sees
And everyone agrees
That you and I are wrong
And it’s been that way too long

The Raconteurs “Many Shades Of Black”

I’m undecided about you again
I can be right that you’re not here
It’s double sided ’cause I ruined it all
But also saved myself
By never believing you dear

Fiona Apple “o’ Sailor”

So maybe you aren’t very fond cupid’s holiday for one reason or another. Even for people in coupledom, this “hallmark holiday” can cause more  prickly then fuzzy feelings, especially when you go to work and see everyone other then you has received a bouquet of flowers. If you are alone on February 14th, it only seems as if the stores are displaying candies and presents earlier, and everyone you know is in some sort of relationship ( even that nasty co-worker you were convinced only had relationships with her cats).
It may soothe your soul to know that no matter how bad of a V-day you may have had in the past, some people had you beat in that category. In 1998, two trains collided in Cameroon, spilling fuel oil that was eventually ignited by a scavenger’s cigarette. The explosion killed more than 100 people. In 1981, a fire in nightclub in Dublin killed forty eight people. Okay, so natural disasters aren’t the same as having a broken heart, but at least you can celebrate being alive (silver lining).
Nothing accentuates the slap in the face of being miserable on a day where everything is covered in pink and red hearts more then whatever over-hyped rom com being released on Valentine’s day. So I have compiled a short list of movies that will make you forget about the looming holiday. Heck, some of them may leave you feeling grateful to be single.

American Beauty
This is a depressing yet refreshing true look at the inter-workings of what seem(from the outside) to be your normal,dysfunctional family. But once you take a closer look, you realize that after time, love fades, dreams subside, and sometimes bitterness controls your every action.


A story of two couples who become mysteriously interlocked into each other’s lives, commit adultery,and complicate things beyond repair, though that doesn’t keep them from trying. It is painful to watch at times, but this movie is one of the truest depictions of love; in that if you keep looking for something better, it will never happen.

(the next two are both Woody Allen movies but you would never know it)

  Match Point

Man tries to worm his way into society by befriending  an affable society man his age while playing tennis. One thing leads to another, and he starts dating his new friend’s sister. Just as it looks as if he is about to marry his way into the high life, he meets his friend’s fiancée, and he is instantly intrigued.


Two young friends, Vicky and Christina, make a trip to Spain together. Vicky is the reserved one of the pair, already engaged; while Christina is a free-spirit unwilling to be constricted by the confines of what society expects of her. Both girls fall under the spell of an alluring spanish painter, though Vicky hides their tryst,while Christina continues the relationship. The relationship blossoms until a wrench is thrown into their bliss, in the form of his volatile ex-wife (who at one point tried to kill him), and soon Christina finds herself in a three-way relationship with the pair. Things get more complicated when Vicky realizes that her one-time tryst may have opened her eyes to how incredibly dull her fiancée really is, but that doesn’t stop her from marrying him. That is only the beginning of this complicated study of human nature; but don’t be fooled by the cover, this one doesn’t have any happy endings.


A playboy goes through life bedding as many women as possible, until one day he realizes that his wild-boy days may not be very fulfilling after all. When he tries to right all of his past wrongs, and grasp onto some semblance of stability, he finds that his actions are too little, too late.

 Revolutionary Road

Now I haven’t seen this one, but I want to. One reviewer said, “ I actually left the theater feeling thankful that I’m not married.”


Yes, I know, this is a mobster movie. But think about it for a minute. Ace makes his way to Vegas and works hard to become legit, and in doing so makes a very big name for himself. His life is going the way he always dreamed it would, until he meets Ginger, a women with a ton of baggage and killer legs. Normally Ace is a meticulous judge of character, but when it comes to Ginger, he loses all control. Ginger ruins everything for Ace and his former friend and confidant Nicky. Bottom line: Love can ruin your life.

Anna Karenina

Now, I would highly recommend reading the novel over watching the movie, but considering the length, you would probably have to start reading it a week before Valentine’s Day. There is a newer version in the works with Keira Knightly as Anna, and Jude Law as Karenin, which I am both dreading and anticipating. I have not seen the 1997 version, but it seems to have received good reviews.  Anna Karenina tells of the doomed love affair between the sensuous and rebellious Anna and the dashing officer, Count Vronsky. Tragedy unfolds as Anna rejects her passionless marriage and must endure the hypocrisies of society.

I hope you enjoy your anti-Valentine’s Day.