Tag Archives: Nick Cave & Warren Ellis

A Lovely Morning So Far!!

For whatever reason — I guess the Autumn Equinox — I now get up at 4am and get out of bed! Whereas, I used to get up at 4am and just lie there for an hour.

Anyway, luckily, I was more than wide awake at 5am for the Bad Seed TeeVee chat-a-long to the Lawless soundtrack (Nick Cave & Warren Ellis). (I will say it again: that is such a beautiful soundtrack, gang; so atmospheric.)

It was fun. At one point I looked at the number of people in the chat and it was something like 900, but most people weren’t actually chatting. So it wasn’t completely insane.

And now it is 7am here and still completely dark out. So you really know it’s fall.

I spent a good chunk of my afternoon yesterday with Kevin, the director of my play (Tell My Bones) and his husband, Chris. So I did not get as much done on the new erotic short story as I had hoped. About 4 or 5 hours, at the most. It is still really challenging. I know what I want to say, but for some reason, I keep hesitating to say it — or write it, I mean.

(And on a side note — I spent about an hour chatting on the phone yesterday with an older gentleman I met through Gus Van Sant Sr. Well, we didn’t meet, we spoke on the phone about my play, via Gus. And at one point, I said something like, “I’ve been doing it a long time, already. I’m 60 years old…” And he said, “You’re kidding me! You sound like a kid!!”)

YAY!!!! Twice in one week…..

Oh, and, at one point yesterday, while I was talking to Chris about something, I noticed he was staring at my neck. I was wearing a sort of hippy-chick blouse that had a deep “V” neckline, and I didn’t ask him, but I just knew he was thinking: Man, no way does her neck look 60 years old….

(YES!! All those many miraculous skin products from France strike again!!) (Yes, yet again, another new product from France. First, they gave a jar of it to me for free. Then, they gave me another jar at half-price. We’ll see what happens after this, because it is really expensive but now I am hooked on it…) (As usual.)

1958 Beauty Ad, Avon Cosmetics & Skin Care Products, with 1950's Super-Model Anne St. Marie | Vintage makeup ads, Vintage cosmetics, Avon cosmetics
Me, yesterday!!! So youthful-looking!!!

Okay, anyway.

So, yesterday was nice even though I didn’t get enough work done on the new story. And I did finally get to chat with Valerie for the first time since her mom died. And the weather was just really, really lovely yesterday. All the trees have changed colors and it was mild enough to not need a jacket or anything. Just perfect weather. It was really a nice drive over to Kevin’s mansion on the hill.

So today, we will try again to make some significant headway with the new story. I guess what we really need is to make headway with myself — get myself to stop hesitating and just write the story the way it is asking me to tell it. Because the story is all up here in my head. I’m the one who is laboring over how to tell it. So we’ll work on that.

As of, like, right now.

So, thanks for visiting, gang. I hope you have a really nice Friday, wherever you are in the world.  Last night, I was listening to the 6 songs that have now been dropped for next week’s upcoming release of Tom Petty’s Wildflowers & All the Rest. (Listening to them over & over, actually. In my bed , in the dark. Thinking about life. And, of course, death, because now I can’t stop thinking about one without the other.)  And I really love that song, “Leave Virginia Alone.”

Today, I’m gonna leave you with Rod Stewart’s version of it, though. He had a hit with it back in 1995.  Listen and enjoy. I love you guys. See ya!

“Leave Virginia Alone”

Well they chased her
Down the alley
And over the hill
To steel her will
She was as hot as
Georgia asphalt
When the A-crowd came
To adore her brain

So leave Virginia alone
Leave Virginia alone
She’s not like you
And me
She’s not like you
And me

You should’ve seen her
Back in the city
Poetry and jewels
Broke all the rules
She was as high as
A Georgia pine tree
Makeup and pills,
Overdue bills

So Leave Virginia alone
Leave Virginia alone
She’s not like you
And me
She’s not like you
And me

Some sunny day
When the hands of time have
Gone their way
You’ll understand
Why it was so hard
To run away
To run away

She’s a loser
She’s a forgiver
She still finds good
Where no one could
You ought to want her
More than money
Cadillacs and rust
Diamonds and dust

So Leave Virginia alone
Leave Virginia alone
She’s not like you
And me
She’s not like you
And me

Ah, yeah
Leave Virginia alone
Leave Virginia alone
She’s not like you
And me
She’s not like you
And me

Ah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah ,…

La, la, la, leave her alone

Oh, Virginia
Oh, Virginia
Leave her alone

© 1994 Tom Petty

A Quick Post

I’m going to be switching  when I post to the blog for a while. I need the early hours of the morning to work on the new erotic short story (titled “Novitiate”), and then do a final edit of the whole collection of stories, in order to get the book off to the publisher as soon as possible.

So, I will either post midday, when I’m getting a break, or I will post after dinner, when I’m done writing for the day.

That will be starting today!!

Before I go, though, the Nick Cave web site sent out a reminder yesterday re: the live online listen-a-long on Bad Seed TeeVee this Friday, Oct.9th. And this is the official time zone thingie. It appears I was wrong yet again, so I’m glad they sent that out!

“This will be a live event available worldwide at the following times on Friday 9th October: Sydney, Melbourne 8pm AEDT / Wellington 10pm NZDT / Paris, Berlin 11am CEST / London 10am BST / Sao Paulo 6am BRT / New York 5am EDT / Mexico City 4am CDT / Los Angeles 2am PDT”

Okay! So I’m gonna scoot and I’ll be back later! Have a terrific Tuesday, wherever you are in the world!! I love you guys. See ya!!

As Always! Pussies Hard at Work Around Here!

Today is a much better day, finally.

I’m not sure what was going on with me since Friday, but it has officially cleared. And I feel like I’m back to being myself. I’m wondering if it was connected to the full moon, or if I was just nuts, with or without the moon. But anyway. It has passed.

My only trial now is that I am trying to stop using the Flonase. Every few months, I take a break from it because it is a steroid. However, it is the ONLY thing out there that really takes care of my allergies. So now I’m going through that thing where I can’t fucking breathe….

And I am doing laundry right now, even as I type! And sadly, the summer PJs are hanging to dry now and will be put away until late Spring.

Amazing how sad it makes me. When I was younger, I never gave a fuck about any of this kind of stuff, because I was always in such a hurry for life to happen, you know? I didn’t give a fuck what PJs I wore to bed — usually, back then, I only wore my delightfully pretty birthday suit to bed! I rarely do that anymore. Because, I’m, like 60, I mean 12. I mean SIXTY! Yes.

Here’s something funny. Yesterday, when I had that (amazing!!) phone chat with the CEO of the new publishing company I just signed with — I think she’s maybe in her late 30s, perhaps 40 at the most? Anyway, she said several times that she couldn’t believe I was 60, because of my voice. (I sound like I’m about 21. Honestly. Or maybe 12…)

I don’t know what it is.  My voice never matured. My personality certainly never matured. I know I don’t look 60, but I look, maybe 49 and a 1/2. I don’t really know. But what I do know is that now, alone in bed at night in the dark, more often than not, I’m streaming those reruns of The Monkees from my wee bonny girlhood.  (And I’m laughing — a lot.) And more often than not, when that’s over, I’m in the throes of some wonder-filled masturbatory frenzy.  Then I start chattering with my many cats, who I call “Silly Billies” because they like to chase each other around my dark bedroom the very moment I start to fall asleep.

And then I realize, you know — my God. I’m 60 years old. For Christ’s sake, I am really never going to grow up. Like, ever.

Normally, I don’t really notice “myself”, because I’m just me all the time.  But once I turned 60, back in July, I have started to sort of notice how weird I am.  I really did used to think that I would get married again one day, and all that stuff, and have some sort of conventional life. But I can’t even imagine anyone putting up with me at this point. It was hard enough for others to tolerate me back when I behaved just like the age I was.

I know! I would be a great match for, like, a really horny 12-year-old boy. But Ohio has these weird pedophile laws now…

Anyway!!

Well, judging from some of the comments I’ve been seeing in the WordPress feed, a whole lot of bloggers were not happy with that sweeping change they made over to the new block editor. So I was not the only one freaking out Friday morning over the “loss” of my blog. I feel a little better knowing that. (I’m also really relieved that I found the tiny little button that leads you to the classic editor. Thank god. But for some reason, they sure don’t want you to find it.) (I thought it was called “Word” Press because it was supposed to be like using “Word,” and not like trying to blog from some weird template from outer space…)

Anyway, for now, it’s over and done. And today is also the day that I am allowed to start building the new site for Marilyn’s Room Books. But I don’t know if I’ll do that today, because now I need to get this new erotic short story written, and do a final edit to the whole collection, and get that off to the publisher as soon as possible, since I already signed the contract for “Half-Moon Bride.”

So that is what my plate looks like today; I hope yours is just as happy.

This Friday, October 9th, is that live chat thing on Bad Seed TeeVee.

I believe that I have at long last figured out that intense Australian time zone difference.

I think it means that I will be tuning in at 6am, US East Coast time. Luckily, I am always awake at 6 am.

I’m not sure how you feel about it. But I guess it all depends on your time zone.

All righty.  Well, the dryer is bleating at me to come attend to it now. So I will close this and get the day underway here.

Thanks for visiting, gang. I’m gonna leave you with what I think is my favorite piece from the Lawless soundtrack (mentioned in that announcement there above). I was once a truly fanatical devotee of Emmylou Harris’s. I had all her records, and I knew every word, every note, etc., etc. I just loved her. (I don’t not love her now, but all of Country music has just changed so radically since those days, and a huge chunk of what I used to love has split off into Americana. It’s hard to follow all of it now.)

Anyway, I leave you with “Fire in the Blood / Snake Song”, which was written by Nick Cave & Warren Ellis (yes! the very same Warren Ellis who launched an Instagram account a couple weeks ago and has posted, like, maybe 4 times…) and which features both Emmylou Harris and Ralph Stanley — who, if you didn’t know him, was an amazing bluegrass banjo player; just legendary, but he has since passed on.

Okay, so I leave you with that today.  Enjoy! I love you guys. See ya!

Fire in the Blood/Snake Song

Come walk with me through the pines
In the morning sun.
The birds are singing in the pines
In the morning sun.

Come stand with me, my darling one,
Among the trembling pines.
We feel His presence all around
Fire in the sky.

You can’t hold me, I’m too slippy,
I do no sleeping, I get wandering
You can touch me if you want to,
I got poison, just might bite you.

Lie in circle on the sunlight
Shine like diamonds on a dark night.
Ain’t no mercy in my smile,
Only fangs and sweet beguiling.

Future, he don’t try to find me
Skin I’ve been through dies behind me
Solid hollow wrapped in hatred,
Not a drop of venom wasted.

You can slip and try to find me
Hold your breath and flat deny me
Makes no difference to my thinking
I’ll be here and you start sinking.

© 2012 Nick Cave, Warren Ellis

Truly A Bittersweet Autumn Day Here in Crazeysburg

Yes, today’s the day I have to trim back the hydrangea. And while this is a sad day for me, it is a day much celebrated by all my neighbors.

Because this means that: a.) they won’t have to look at an enormously huge brown & drooping hydrangea anymore; and b.) they will finally have free access to the entire sidewalk when walking their dogs, riding their bikes, or pushing their baby strollers, etc., etc.

Plus, since my lawn guy was having such severe back problems (he’s getting surgery soon) that the last time he was here, I told him just to cut the grass and not worry about trimming anything or blowing away the clippings from the sidewalk. So today I have to sweep all those now very- dead clippings up, too, and my sidewalk is only about 17 miles long…

Lest you’ve forgotten about my very long sidewalk, here it is from September of last year:

I know it doesn’t look 17 miles long, but it is.

(And you should see my neighbor’s fence now, gang. Remember that intense wind from early spring that blew the roof off of my barn? Well, it wreaked havoc on that wooden fence there. It is just one great big blown apart mess now, and I guess the neighbors have no immediate plans of doing anything about it.

(And they have two little girls and so now we can all readily see that those little girls have every available  backyard plaything known to man! Seriously, if it’s made out of hideous plastic and you can buy it for a child and put it in a yard, these little girls have got it.)

All righty.

So, I did the final tweaking and the read-through of 1954 Powder Blue Pickup yesterday and I was really, really happy with it, gang. Just really happy. Today, after I do all my strenuous “yard work,” I’m going to do the manuscript formatting and then send it off to the publisher and I will keep you posted!!

This morning, on Instagram, the official Nick Cave page released an announcement that on Oct. 9th, on Bad Seed TeeVee, there will be this:

And while I have never actually watched the film Lawless all the way through (even though I own it — I also own The Proposition and have never watched it all the way through, either. I just have problems with all the violence. And sometimes, I say to myself “this is the day when I will be able to just sit and watch this and not get squeamish about all the violence”, and then I last about 5 minutes….)

That said, though, the music from the film Lawless is really great. It’s very sort of “Great Depression-era American bluegrass music” type original stuff. Beautiful. And it has performers like Emmylou Harris and Ralph Stanley (who has since passed away).

And as near as I can tell, AEST is an Australian time zone which requires higher math skills to figure out, so I honestly have no clue whatsoever what 8PM AEST really means in, you know, the time zone that everybody else actually lives in…

Plus, I don’t know about you, but I still have trouble watching stuff and looking at chat at the same time! (I’m one of those people who still can’t watch the news and look at the other news scrolling along the bottom of the screen without going insane.) But this is only because I’m ancient, so don’t let the chat room thing deter you.

And also, I think you are required to provide your own snacks. I think I read somewhere, though, that you can pre-order snacks from Cave Things, but the only option is regular pretzels in a 1-ounce snack-size  bag that is autographed by Nick Cave and costs £300 plus shipping, and you must pre-order it today, otherwise they won’t guarantee that it will reach you by Oct 9th…

(I am so very much kidding about all of that!!!! So don’t go looking for it.)

All righty!!!!

I did get an email from Valerie during the night, and it sounds like it is just even more difficult for her right now than I could imagine.  The wake for her mom is tomorrow. Plus, she has selflessly chosen to adopt her mom’s wild little dog, even though Valerie already has a pitbull and about 6 house cats, and about a dozen feral cats that live out back in her yard in Brooklyn. So the menagerie has grown…

Okay, on that note, I’m gonna leave you now. And do yoga and then trim a hydrangea… I’m leaving you with “Sheila” again, by Tommy Roe, since that’s pretty much the only song going through my head these days (Valerie’s “real” name is Sheila, and that was her mom’s name, too, and Valerie and I have been connected now for a very, very, very long time and I have always loved that fucking song.)

All right. Thanks for visiting. Have a good Tuesday, okay? I love you guys. See ya.

[UPDATE: Here’s that photo I went looking for yesterday.  Valerie’s mom is on the left, and Valerie is on the right, and two aunts are in the middle — all are on their their way from NYC to Ireland for a vacation.]

And so the plot thickens!

The meeting re: Tell My Bones was really great. But it became apparent that I need to fix that character arc before the table read happens. So I guess I don’t have to tell you what I’ll be focusing on around here, posthaste.

But the good-ish thing, is that I actually spoke to Sandra on the phone after the meeting (yes, the woman I can almost never reach on the phone, ever), and she has to start rehearsals in Canada in early February, so I can’t imagine I’ll be going to NYC before March, maybe even as late as April, so this gives me a little more time.

Plus, if the table read is in March or April, this gives me the chance to drive myself completely nuts over whether I want to fly to NYC or drive! Yes, my never-ending conundrum. If I had to be there in February, I wouldn’t risk driving across Pennsylvania, but March is not quite so dicey. (I know — I made myself promise that I would quit doing all that driving to NY and just fucking fly into LaGuardia, for chrissakes…)

Anyway. The really good news is that the Christmas card campaign was a complete success.  We didn’t send out very many cards at all. They were highly targeted towards people I actually want to work with. You know, ideally.  And judging by the numbers between the week of Christmas and today (we don’t have access to any names), it looks like basically everyone who received a card checked out the Tell My Bones web site, and a whopping 88% of those same numbers clicked on the excerpt of the play!

This is an astoundingly great result. I don’t have the numbers yet on how many people actually signed up for the newsletter, though. Still, it’s an awesome result. And I had handwritten personal notes to each person, introducing them to my play, who didn’t know me from anyone else on Earth. So it was an investment of (hand-cramping) time and money that really paid off.

I left the meeting today feeling really encouraged about those numbers.

Now, of course, I have to fix that character arc. Without having it be a massive rewrite of the play.

Well, Nick Cave (and Warren Ellis) posted to Instagram today. However, it was for a sad reason — the catastrophe going on in Australia and asking people to do what they can to help. (They are donating $500,000.)

I don’t know where you live, but here is a NY Times piece from 2 days ago, giving links to places you can donate to, if you’re not really sure how you can help.

I give to wildlife charities, specifically, if you are interested in that — which are here and here. (Although the first link, International Fund for Animal Welfare is doing a massive drive right now to help Australian wildlife.)

Anyway, it is quite sad. But it still counts as a personal Nick Cave Instagram post…

Okay, so that was today! At least some really good news for the play. I’m feeling on a much more even keel than I felt this morning, for sure. But now I have to seriously focus on that one character and get her story figured out.

All righty, then! I’m gonna go eat something. Maybe watch Black Books. Have a nice evening, wherever you are in the world (assuming it’s still evening there, of course!). Thanks for visiting, gang. I love you guys, See ya.

A Day In The (Other) Life

So today marks the 39th anniversary of John Lennon’s murder. I won’t say that it feels like yesterday, because it does indeed feel like forever ago, but the day is still vividly clear in my memory.

Up until then, any of the well-known people who’d been killed in my lifetime were political figures in some way. Lennon was, for me, the first cultural icon that was murdered and he was one of my absolute heroes.

To be honest, I look back on my girlhood and I’m not entirely sure why he mattered so much to me, but he did. I think because he was always someone who struggled with existential truths and seemed to be brutally honest about it.

I know that right when I first moved to NYC, his new album, Double Fantasy, came out and it was really such a great album. I was so excited. And it was such a NYC type of album, too, and so I was doubly excited to finally be living in New York.  I lived there 3 weeks and then he got murdered.  I’ll just say that the word “devastated” doesn’t come close to describing the shock and grief I felt.

I don’t really want to go into all the details from back then, or the memories I have of those first few weeks in NYC because they were momentous on too many levels — meeting Nick the Mafia hit man guy, getting pregnant by him. Having to get away from him. Lennon getting killed. Meeting the man who became my first husband. All of that stuff happened literally within a few weeks of moving to NYC when I was 20.

So I really don’t want to think too much about any of that stuff today. My life is in such a good place right now, I really don’t want to look back. I’ll never forget this date on the calendar, but the details— I don’t know; I don’t want to dwell on it.

Well, on a much brighter note — even though you’re seriously not supposed to do it, someone posted some footage on Instagram today of Nick Cave and Warren Ellis’s event with the symphony in Sydney, Australia from last night and it looks like it was just stunning. Just from what little I saw on Instagram. Wow, gang. I really wish I could have been there. I think there are 2 more shows for Monday (which I think is already today over in Australia). I just— well, I don’t know. I just wish I could have gone. It looks like it was so beautiful.

There was something else on Instagram— not positive if I read it right, but it seems that Nick Cave was the Artist of the Decade on Spotify. Yes, that same music platform that I can never get to work correctly, so clearly, this Nick Cave development had nothing to do with me!!! But if it’s indeed true, I think that is just so fucking cool!!

Okay, one other exciting though wildly unrelated thing: I went to fill my gas tank this morning because I know that once my mom gets here tomorrow, I’m gonna have to drive with her to a couple of places in town, and the gas was only $2.39 a gallon!!! I thought that was amazingly awesome!! I don’t remember the last time it was that cheap. Several years, for sure.

So sometime around noon tomorrow, my sister will be dropping off my mom and I’m so excited. My sister texted earlier to say that my mom was really excited about seeing me and that just makes me feel so great. You have no idea.

I guess that’s it for now. I imagine that over the next 3 days while my mom is visiting, my blog posts will he brief. Hope you have a great Sunday, wherever you are in the world!! Thanks for visiting. I leave you with the song that was just barely becoming a hit when Lennon was murdered. I still think it’s just a wonderful, upbeat song. Okay. I love you guys! See ya!

Lo & Behold! Exciting Times!!

Yes, based on the above illustration, you can probably tell, it’s laundry day around here! But that’s not all the excitement.

No!! There’s more!

Late yesterday afternoon, I discovered a little baby mole on the floor of the downstairs bathroom. It seemed thoroughly exhausted from trying to maneuver itself on the linoleum floor. It was very much alive when I found it, but it just couldn’t get any traction and, I’m guessing, couldn’t really see.

I was able to scoop it up and get it back outside BEFORE  seven cats found it and tore it to pieces. I cannot emphasize enough just what a relief that was. That poor little thing. I have no clue how it got there, but that bathroom is close to the backdoor that leads directly to the backyard. I’m guessing it is connected to that somehow.

Either that, or one of these spirits here in the house decided that, rather than return my one stocking (see post below somewhere), it would give me a baby mole instead…

Today is the day that I’m bringing all the potted plants indoors for the season. Which means that I have to somehow barricade the palm tree from the cats. I’m going to try just loading piles of books around the tree, and not in neat piles, or anything, but in really precarious piles so that the cats will have nothing to actually grab on to. We’ll see if that works. It’s already gone down to 36 degrees Fahrenheit twice now, so I can’t risk keeping that tree outside any longer.

It’s definitely Nature vs. Nature around here, isn’t it? Either a killing frost or wild & untamed cats…

Big, BIG news from late yesterday evening! Nick Cave & Warren Ellis are doing that symphony thing again with their film scores — this time in Sydney, in early December. I realized this means that, ostensibly, they will have plenty of time between those 2 gigs and Christmas, to fly here to Crazeysburg from Australia and appear with our symphony orchestra, too!

We don’t actually have a symphony orchestra, but I have about 8 or 9 weeks to get the 14 townspeople together, teach them how to play various orchestral instruments and stuff, and then, I don’t know, either build a symphony hall, or use that really old town hall thingie that we already have here, and put on a show. I’m not planning to join the orchestra because I want to be able to actually attend. And since I have this amazing bathroom scale now, that helps me achieve my goal weight several times during the course of a single evening, I know I’ll be able to fit into some  sort of amazing couturier gown.

I can just tell it’s gonna be a terrific Christmas…

Anyway. In all seriousness. I’m guessing the Sydney event will be just stunning. I wish I could attend. I really do.

In other good news — yesterday afternoon, Peitor texted. He’s back in LA and we are planning to finally catch up over the phone later today. I’m really looking forward to that. It was the height of summer, the last time we actually talked.

Nick Cave is also having a Conversation in LA later today, as it turns out! But of a much different sort, and it’s the last Conversation of the US tour.  (Folks from San Francisco are still posting amazing stuff on Instagram from Sunday. It really looks like the SF show was so cool.) (And it’s a toss up between the theater in SF and that one in Montreal — which one was the most jaw-dropping; they were both just gorgeous venues.)

Okay, well. New topic. About 18 or 19 years ago, I won that award in London for my book, Neptune & Surf — Erotic Writer of the Year. And the organization is now 25 years old. They are having some sort of 25th Anniversary celebration at this year’s awards (in November, in London). They are now called the Sexual Freedom Awards, and they are asking previous winners to contribute a statement about what sexual freedom means in 2019. I get 140 characters (not words, mind you!) to express that. Can you imagine me distilling something like that down to 140 characters??!!

Well, I’m trying…

You know, I remember what I wore to those Awards. I had the prettiest little dress but I don’t recall where I got it from or whatever happened to it. It was black velvet, a real short, billowy skirt and a halter-style top that had criss-cross ties in back. So, clearly, I didn’t wear a bra that night, but back then, I didn’t actually need to.  I still had those “modest breasts” back then; I didn’t get the “twin Cadillacs” that I have now until after menopause.  (It’s really ironic, because back then, I used to wish for something that could at least fill a push-up bra because I used to spend a fortune on fetish lingerie, and now I wear minimizers because I really, really can’t stand having my tits enter a room before I do. It turns out, I really enjoyed having the figure of a boy but I didn’t know it until it was gone…) And I wore those gorgeous black 4-inch spiked-heel ankle strap open-toed shoes to the Awards. Loyal readers of this lofty blog no doubt recall that I bought those shoes in London in 1976, when I was all of 16 years old!! Yes, for some mysterious reason, my mother let me buy a pair of fetish high heels in London when I was only 16. And I still have them, and they are still gorgeous because I have taken really good care of them all these years, but back at those Awards, I was actually able to walk around in those shoes. Not anymore…

The other day, actually, I got out a pair of vintage Gucci high-heels that I’ve had since the 1990s and they still fit. They are gorgeous, too. Copper-colored patent leather pumps, with very pointy toes and a 3 or 4 inch spiked, gold heel. For some reason, I happened to notice the bottoms of the shoes and discovered not a single scuff mark, and that tells me that I never, ever, EVER wore those shoes outside. I find that so (gently) amusing — that I would pay a fortune for a pair of shoes back then, just to wear to bed.

At one point, while married to Wayne, I had something like 32 pairs of high-heeled shoes — most of which, I wore only to bed. (“Bed” being a time-honored euphemism for not actually sleeping.)

It’s just funny to remember all that. I was just insane. I had so many little (expensive) outfits back then. I would sometimes change outfits 2 or 3 times while “not sleeping.” Menopause was actually a blessing to me — to finally be able to calm down a little. It wasn’t exactly  100% fun being so over the top hormonal all the time. It got exhausting.

All righty!! I guess on that lofty note, I will get the day started here, gang. Finish that laundry and start writing so that I can spend time chatting with Peitor without feeling like I’m not getting any work done… I hope you have a terrific Tuesday, wherever you are in the world. I was listening again to Ghosteen this morning so I won’t regale you with that — you need to go purchase it, instead. (And it really is just so beautiful, gang, you really should buy it.) But I love you guys! See ya.

Me doing laundry just now, here in Crazeysburg! Not quite as glamorous as my wee bonny hormonal-peak years in Manhattan!

Mi mancano i bagagli!

Si! I am learning some very important things now in Italian!

“I am missing some luggage!” “I would like a dessert!” “She never walks in the park!” “There is a party here!” “The butterfly is beautiful!” “Can I help you?!” “At what time is lunch?!”

(Of course, the exclamation points are mine — added to just give you the feel of the overall excitement here.)

Actually, though, I am starting to learn things. Meaning, of course, not just phrases but also the dreaded grammar.  The Mondly app, honestly, is really fun. (I’m still thinking, though, that my extensive studies in French help enormously, plus I’ve also studied Spanish and Portuguese, so I’m not really sure what the app feels like if you have no exposure to a Romance language.)

I have not yet sprung any of my meager Italian on Peitor, though. Since he is fluent in Italian, he might go off on a spree and leave me sputtering in the dust. And even while it’s fun to actually be learning Italian after all these years (since I first studied it and gave up), I do really wish that my dearest friend, the fluent-in-Italian-Peitor, was coming to Perugia with me.

Not that I have ever been one who wants to stand behind some sort of wildly capable man and then simply follow; in this instance, I would be 100% okay with it!! You bet’cha!!

However, he has already assured me — in rather excellent English — that he is not coming to Perugia to simply hold my hand (and speak Italian for me) because he has to stay in Los Angeles sometimes and earn a living. (He is a record producer and a composer.) (But he does go to Italy about 6 times a year, so there is still that tiny hope that one of those times will be when I will be overseeing the Writer’s Retreat.) (Peitor organizes all the various retreats at Villa Monte Malbe, but he doesn’t attend them unless he’s, you know, on the payroll…)

(And even while I am certainly old enough to participate in some sort of Roman Spring of Mrs. Stone, I’m not wealthy enough to pay for it.) (Sadly.) (Although if I could afford it, I would probably want to support an actual gigolo, and not my dearest friend…who would likely balk at many of the things I would be expecting if, you know, I were actually paying for it.)

In fact, I can hear it now:

ME: (asking him for any of the many things I would be expecting.)

HIM: “Marilyn, shut up and get your mind out of the gutter. ”

(Frankly, I can get that for free. In any language.)

So!! Gang. I have to say that my work on the revisions for Tell My Bones has just been really, really great this weekend. Yesterday made me so happy. This next segment I’m working on actually sort of “bleeds through” into two segments and it’s really opening up in my head — just filling up with life.  I’m really excited. And if I hadn’t already written this thing 17 hundred times, I probably wouldn’t be able to visually open it up like this. I feel like I’m seeing it in 360 degrees, and not just in a linear way, if that makes any sense.

Well, before I get back at it here today (yes, I slept in again!! You have no idea how lovely the mornings have been here — cool and sunny and so peaceful!), I only want to say a couple more things.

One: Marlon Richards turned 50 fucking years old yesterday, and if you think that doesn’t make me feel indescribably old, you are just out to lunch; what can I say? I don’t mind being 59, but how can he possibly be 50??!! He’s just a little boy, one that Keith and (the now deceased) Anita are always toting around…

Image result for keith richards and marlon as a baby
Yes, that wee bonny lad turned 50 yesterday… How old does that make YOU??!! (Stop looking at Anita’s sizable things there, and just look at the wee bonny lad!!)

And for no reason at all, here is my very favorite photo of Keith. I have had it stuck to my wall for years.

Keith in Los Angeles, in 1969. (Robert Altman)

The other thing is that it does seem like the thing in Melbourne — Nick Cave and Warren Ellis and the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra — was incredible. Gosh, I wish I could have been there. (And they even sort of speak English in Australia so I wouldn’t have needed a Mondly app!!)

All righty! I gotta scoot. Thanks for visiting, gang. As unlikely as it may seem, I will leave you with my breakfast-listening music from this morning!! Make of it what you will on this glorious Sunday. I love you guys. See ya!

“Joyful, Joyful, We Adore Thee”

Joyful, joyful, we adore Thee,
God of glory, Lord of love;
Hearts unfold like flow’rs before Thee,
Op’ning to the sun above.
Melt the clouds of sin and sadness;
Drive the dark of doubt away;
Giver of immortal gladness,
Fill us with the light of day!

All Thy works with joy surround Thee,
Earth and heav’n reflect Thy rays,
Stars and angels sing around Thee,
Center of unbroken praise.
Field and forest, vale and mountain,
Flow’ry meadow, flashing sea,
Singing bird and flowing fountain
Call us to rejoice in Thee.

Mortals, join the happy chorus,
Which the morning stars began;
Father love is reigning o’er us,
Brother love binds man to man.
Ever singing, march we onward,
Victors in the midst of strife,
Joyful music leads us Sunward
In the triumph song of life.

Songwriters: LUDWIG VAN BEETHOVEN / FRED BOCK / REV. HENRY VAN DYKE

An Ode to Sylvia & A Bunch of Other Stuff!

Somewhere in this house, I believe I still have a copy of Sylvia Plath’s Journals. I’m not up to the task of finding it right now, because I just have way too many books.  And once I start going through all my bookshelves, then that’s it. I get pulled in for hours.

However. Many years ago — 30 or so — I read Sylvia Plath’s Journals (that’s Sylvia, pictured up there, at the time documented in her journals). I recall vividly one entry where she was newly married and really happy. It was summertime and a heatwave had broken and the weather had gotten so cool that she had to put on a sweater. And she wrote so touchingly about the beauty of wearing a sweater in cool weather.  Unexpected changes, mid-season.

Today, it has actually gotten so cool that I’m wearing my flannel robe over my summer PJs! And so I’m thinking about “sweater weather” and of Sylvia Plath, and the simple beauty that lives eternally through her, in spite of what she’d sadly hoped to obliterate about herself.

And on a very different note…

From the window near my desk right now, I can see down into the stretch of yard between my house and the neighbor’s house.  The guy there (the drummer) is out there right this minute, mowing the grass. (This is a process that takes maybe 8 minutes because he has a tiny yard — large house but a tiny yard. ) Anyway, I see that since yesterday morning, he has completely shaved his head and shaved off all his facial hair, of which he had plenty.

Isn’t it weird? It makes me wonder what it was about yesterday that made him decide to do that. I wonder if he’d been planning it for several days, or if it was just a whim?

Well, a couple of photos finally got into my Instagram feed early this morning from the concerts going on in Melbourne this weekend with Nick Cave & Warren Ellis. One was from Susie Cave, so that was sort of an “official” photo, but there was another one from the audience from Friday night, at the end of the concert, and then someone else posting that it was “powerful  & intense,” and then someone else posted saying it was a “healing experience” (no doubt!) — but neither of those people posted photos from the actual show.

It’s probably one of those things where people aren’t allowed to be documenting the concert with their phones, because there’s just been a huge dearth of anything coming out of Melbourne. (A “huge” dearth is kind of an interesting concept, isn’t it?) (Or perhaps people in Melbourne simply don’t own cell phones. That’s probably the more reasonable explanation…)

I also noticed that Sandra Caldwell, the actress I write the theater projects with/for in NYC, was a busy bee on Instagram up in Toronto yesterday, texting with someone that I don’t know, but she posted quite a few really stunning photos of herself from about 30 years ago.  Mostly she was wearing not much of anything at all in the way of clothing!! (She’s very good friends with my ex-husband, Wayne, and so she came to our wedding back in 1993 and she was, by far and away, the most stunning woman there, even though she was wearing clothes.)

When Sandra and I first met — when I was first engaged to Wayne, who was a professional actor back then — she was also engaged to be married and she gave me this really stunning ring. She didn’t want to just get rid of the ring because some important guy gave it to her but she didn’t feel it was appropriate to keep it since she was getting married to someone else. So she gave the ring to me.

The ring is not real, it’s Cubic Zirconia, but it looks like a real diamond ring — it has about 6 “diamonds” on it, in a gold setting. I rarely wear it because it’s so pretty and I don’t want to get it all fucked up, but when I do wear it, everyone thinks it’s real and their eyes pop out. I never dreamed back when she & I first met, that our relationship would be so instrumental for me as a writer. I think it’s kind of funny that, upon meeting me, she gave me a diamond ring! (You know, like we got engaged to a future destiny or something.)

I’m actually not very big on jewelry, and what jewelry I do wear is almost always sterling silver. I’m not sure why I like silver so much, but I have a ton of it. I also love pearls.  I have some beautiful pearls that I inherited. But almost all of my gold and diamonds (including my diamond engagement ring from Tiffany’s — Wayne & I actually got engaged inside Tiffany’s, in NYC, back in the fall of 1992; yes, the self-same Tiffany’s of Truman Capote’s “Breakfast at…” fame); I had to sell all of my valuable jewelry when my “dearly beloved” from about 12 years ago, gambled away my life savings (see some earlier post somewhere that details all that).

Oddly enough, the one ring I didn’t sell, which is not that valuable but it is gold and does have chips of diamonds and rubies on it — that one I didn’t sell because (unlike a fucking diamond ring from Tiffany’s for god’s sake!!) it holds sentimental value for me. It really, really does. And who gave it to me? The same fucking guy who gambled my world away…

Ah well. That’s just so me. (And, yes, in case you were going to point it out — I have had my head examined, thank you very much!) (And it didn’t reveal anything I didn’t already know.)

All righty!! My Internet has gone in and out all morning, so I’m going to post this right now, while I seem to actually have a connection. And I will get to work on the play. Have a really great Saturday, wherever you are in the world!! (Or I hope it was a good one, if it’s almost over!)

Thanks for visiting. And I leave you with the song I was actually listening to this morning, although I have no idea why it even came to me. I hadn’t thought of the song in decades. But I think it’s fitting for Sylvia Plath, and even for me in regards to my dearly beloved, who had the gambling addiction I didn’t know about, and who taught me all the gentle ins & outs of filing for a restraining order… (heavy sigh). Okay. I love you guys! See ya!!

“Drowning in the Sea of Love”

[Chorus]
I’ve been down one time
I’ve been down two times
But now I’m drowning, drowning in the sea of love

Let me tell ya all about it
I’ve been out here so very long, I’ve lost all my direction
Baby when you came my way I thought I’d found my protection
But a strong wind came into my life, surely took me by surprise
& I can’t seem to control these tears that’s falling from my eyes

Listen to me
Baby I depended on you, for a love & affection
But now you gone and deserted me, can’t you see that I’m in desperation
I’m in the middle of a bad love storm, ooh yeah I just can’t let it, boy I
Looked around and all I could see, was water coming over me

All I do is cry, all I do is walk around and cry
But right now I’m drowning, oh I’m drowning in the sea of love

But that’s alright, I don’t mind drowning for your love
That’s alright baby, hear me when I say it’s alright
You got the kind of love that make me feel alright
You got the kind of love baby that make me cry all night long
You got the kind of love baby make me do things I don’t wanna do
And it’s alright

c- 1971 Kenny Gamble & Leon Huff

Cats Are So Good At Acting Like They Can’t Understand You!

Yes, once again, I have subtly left the vacuum cleaner in the middle of the family room, hoping that the cats would take the hint and vacuum the darn house, but they just walk right past it. Not only as if they don’t see it, but as if they don’t even comprehend what it’s for.

It just gets me so mad. One of these days, I’m just going to fucking break down and do it myself!

Anyway…

Yes, the dust and the cat hair (and the Marilyn hair) gathers all over the house (it makes me insane because I am a little bit of a cleaning freak, truth be told), but I got some amazing writing done on the play yesterday, gang. And you can only do so much, you know?

ME (drumming my fingers on my desk, thinking): Hmmm. Decisions, decisions. Do I want a Pulitzer Prize or a clean house?

I really was just so happy yesterday.  I somehow managed to capture one of those complicated dream-painting scenes from the Tell My Bones screenplay and translate it for the stage.  (Meaning that one of Helen’s most popular paintings comes to life while she’s dreaming and she then uses the setting of her painting to interact with all the people in her life who have died.) It’s very easy to do on film, but I wasn’t sure how best to achieve it for the stage without having some sort of huge budget, a la “Sunday in the Park with George.”  Especially since there are just so many of Helen’s paintings setting the scenes in this play. You don’t want to just focus hugely on one thing and then not bring the rest of the play up to that scope. (i.e., a Broadway Musical budget.)

Plus, I was able to use the setting of the painting coming to life to sort of jettison a bunch of narrative monologue type stuff and really cut to the chase and then move forward to the next segment. (And underlying the whole “painting coming to life” scene, is the cast singing, in a really ghost-like, ethereal way, the old  slave spiritual, “Didn’t My Lord Deliver Daniel?” )

We’ll see what the director thinks. I’m guessing it still needs tweaking but overall, I am just so happy. I’m going to work on it some more today because our meeting has been switched to next Tuesday.

I’m not sure what’s up in Melbourne. So far no reviews in the online newspapers in Australia re: the Nick Cave & Warren Ellis events going on with the symphony there. But I did see that more Bad Seeds are supposed to be involved (?) on Saturday night (which for all I know is right now, since I have no clue what day or time it is in Australia!!) so perhaps that is what everyone is waiting for? I actually do not know. Anyway.  No reviews yet. And I had to un-follow  #nickcave on Instagram because way, way, WAY too much insane stuff gets into my Instagram feed with that hashtag. Most of it is actually quite interesting, and mostly from Europe, but I don’t have time to scroll through all that insanity because it only makes me want to stop and ponder!!!

Eventually, we will find out everything about everything. I feel confident about that.

Okay. I gotta scoot, gang. I once again slept in a little bit today because my bed was just so darn comfortable — it got back down into the 60s Fahrenheit during the night. And my bed, and all the open windows — it was just too beautiful. Eros was everywhere! But now I gotta get going here.

Thanks for visiting. I leave you with this — a young girl choir in Mississippi, singing “Didn’t My Lord Deliver Daniel?” For some reason, this is my favorite version on YouTube. It is so uncomplicated but full of enthusiasm. Okay, I love you guys! Have a terrific Friday!! See ya!