Tag Archives: playwright

A Big Money Pow Wow Kind of Day!

Yes, Sandra and I have done nothing but discuss this theater stuff.   To say that it’s weighing on me now is a slight understatement.

We’re taking the train into the city later this morning. Then I’m gonna check into my Airbnb. She’s going to drop her stuff off at her pied a terre. Then we go across town to meet with the director.

The front porch here is so inviting. It has wicker rocking chairs. I actually fell asleep for a few minutes while rocking yesterday in the sun, listening to the peace & quiet.

But then Sandra came out to the porch and we began discussing the play again, and my peace sort of fled me. She says, “ I want to hear what the director thinks, but I’m thinking we’re looking at a 2 million dollar budget for this play now.”

I just sort of looked at her.

I can’t really get my mind around that kind of a budget, but I’m inclined to believe her. The rewrites have been that drastic.

I can’t process it anymore. Of course, we’ll hear what the director is thinking about it, as well. But all I can do, really, is just focus on writing the best play I can and then not think one step beyond that. Just let life happen. Allow the Universe to work those miracles it is so famous for.

Several photos on Instagram this morning from Nick Cave’s Conversation in DC last night. Looks like it went splendidly!! I of course will not even be bringing my phone to Lincoln Center tonight.  I never take photos of events even when I’m allowed to. I just sort of like to be present and not even think about my phone. Tonight’s show is where I have the really good seat — 4th row of the Orchestra, over to the left.

Even while I have collected photos and micro clips on Instagram of every single one of these Conversations since the tour started in Australia in January, I’m oddly feeling like I have no idea what to expect.  The only thing I feel certain of is that the time will fly and I will wish that, instead, time would stop and it would go on forever.

However…

Okay, so I wrote a new segment for In the Shadow of Narcissa yesterday. I think I still might tweak it a tiny bit. But you can find the segment at the link to the site that’s somewhere here in the blog. I’m on my phone now so I can’t really see the navigation. But the link is here somewhere.

Tomorrow, Sunday, I will likely spend the day in my room at the Airbnb working on rewrites of the play. Sandra and I might meet up with Wayne somewhere (my ex who is also a long time friend of Sandra’s). I’m not positive about that. I’m kind of keeping tomorrow open because Monday I’m sort of booked solid before the Conversation at Town Hall at 8pm, and I want to relax a little. I think. I guess we’ll see how it all pans out.

Okay. Yes, I’m in a bit of a weird mood, stemming from this colossal budget thing that I managed to create. No one but me seems at all disturbed by this so I’m trying to just let it go and chill, you know? I guess, like everything, we’ll just see.

I leave you with a shot of the quiet empty kitchen from just before I began to blog— when I grabbed another cup of coffee.  I get up so early, as you know. Not a soul around here is awake until hours after I get up.

Well, okay.

Thanks for visiting, gang!! Have a super Saturday, wherever you are in the world! I love you guys! See ya!

Early morning in the kitchen in Rhinebeck!

 

All Is Decidedly Well!

[UPDATE:  In the Shadow of Narcissa has updated. You can read it here! Thanks!]

(Now, back to the blog!)

Three nights in a row now, I have slept really great. No anxiety at all, even though all my challenges remain the same and, now that I’m here in Rhinebeck, focusing on both plays with Sandra, new challenges are arising. But that sense that everything will unfold however it needs to unfold is really pronounced.

So I’m good.

I can’t believe that the Conversations with Nick Cave resume tonight in DC. It seems like it came so fucking fast. Then tomorrow night, I see him in the city— and then again on Monday.

I’m doing that thing again — dragging my feet, trying to slow it all down, because it will be over in a heartbeat and life will just go on!

No!! How can that be??

When Sandra asked me who I was seeing in the city, and I said “Nick Cave,” she said, “but who are you seeing on Monday then?”

”Nick Cave.”

”Oh, then who are you seeing at Lincoln Center?”

”Nick Cave.”

”Wait— you’re seeing that dude twice?”

”Yeah.”

“You must like him a lot.”

”I do.”

”Who is he?”

Aaaarrrggggh!!!! Oh well. Clearly not every American is oblivious to Nick Cave because all the Conversations are sold out…

Sandra and I had a long discussion last evening re: Tell My Bones and I went over the director’s notes with her, even though I haven’t done the rewrites yet. She was very insightful and enthusiastic. Today, we’re going to go over the whole play, scene by scene, which will likely help me facilitate the rewrites.

I’m feeling extremely good about everything because Sandra’s response to this new version is very, very encouraging.

I have a feeling I’ll be spending most of my time at the Airbnb writing. Both on Tell My Bones and on a new segment for In the Shadow of Narcissa. I’m planning to spend Monday with Valerie. But other than that, I think I’ll just be hanging out by myself, writing.

Yesterday, Sandra and I went and had lunch at this place I really like because it has great vegetarian options. And in there, I swear to you — I’m not lying about this — one of the guys who works there, who looked to be in his late teens, early 20s tops, came on to me!! I was completely taken aback by this because I was in one of those intense moods where I wasn’t even smiling. At first I thought maybe he was attracted to my Tom Petty tee shirt. But, no, it seemed that he was actually attracted to ME! And I was, like, WOW.  Now that is interesting, right? It’s like they get younger and younger.

Is it because I’m getting more and more immature?!!

When I woke up this morning, at 5:45 am, my brain was reciting various odd stanzas from Whitman’s “I Sing the Body Electric.”  I hadn’t thought of that poem in years. This is that area of the country, where he lived, roamed, thrived, wrote. Really, when you get to the East Coast you can feel the ghosts of all those sensibilities— writers and thinkers who settled here, drew in the Nature that was all around here back then, and then created from that intake. Rhinebeck is just one of those places that retains its history. It’s part of daily life. It’s the reason why I love it so much — but it does come with a huge price tag. It’s really expensive to live out here.

New Yorkers do that to a place: they buy a summer home somewhere up the Hudson, then decide it’s so nice, let’s make it year round. Then everyone catches on and does the same thing, and in a heartbeat, the price of everything goes through the roof and city people are all over the place.

Okay! Well, I hope things are good in your part of the world, gang. I’m gonna grab some more coffee and hang out and think about life until Sandra emerges from the boudoir. I leave you with a shot looking down in the neighbors yard at 6:30 am this morning.

Thanks for visiting! I love you guys. See ya.

Looking down at the neighbor’s yard in Rhinebeck 6:30 am

 

How Nice!! My Brain Returned!!

That’s good news, right? I woke up this morning and had a functioning human brain again!

Of course, the slightly bad news is that I still can’t wrap my mind around those extensive notes for the ending segment of Tell My Bones, and my mind seems to be leaning toward writing the next installment of In the Shadow of Narcissa this morning anyway. So I’m getting the feeling that I’m gonna do that.

And then maybe vacuum the house…

And then maybe sit and think about the play…

Sandra finally texted yesterday that she liked the new version but wasn’t understanding how we were going to do a staged reading of it because it now feels so cinematic.

AAAAACCHHH!!

I totally forgot that I have to completely rewrite the staged reading version of the play now, too. (And if you’re deranged enough to be following the progress of all of my far-flung projects, you might recall that I have yet to revise the show bible for Cleveland’s Burning since I did the 4th draft of it back in October…) (And the veteran African-American television actor who was negotiating with me to attach  himself to the TV pilot to play the grandfather role, decided to die the other day. Literally. Peitor texted me from Italy on Friday saying only: “John died.” Oh fuck, now that’s good news…) (And all of my own selfish needs aside; that guy was a really, really nice man.)

Anyway.

I cannot even begin to comprehend how to write the staged reading version of Tell My Bones at this point, without the director basically drawing me a detailed blue print & map. Either that, or I’ll just shoot myself and hope for a better, non-writing, life next time around.

Honestly. I cannot even begin to imagine what the staged reading of this version of the play is gonna look like. I simply cannot.

However, what I told Sandra is: no worries, we all just need to have a chat about it in person once I get there, figure it all out! She texted back a cheery “thumb’s up.”

So we’ll just see what the heck the future brings re: this amazing play because I sure as hell cannot figure it out.

I actually can’t figure anything out. To be honest, way down deep at the core of everything, I don’t even know what Life is or why I exist. I’m just wingin’ it on every level, pretty much every day.

Before I forget — please be on the lookout for the upcoming Fall Issue of the Exterminating Angel Press Magazine (online) because they have an excerpt of my new novel, Blessed By Light, in there!! They’re printing Chapter 18, which is titled, “The Guitar Hero Goes Home.” I will, of course, keep you posted.

All righty. That said, while I still have a functioning brain around here today, I’m gonna scoot and take a look at how I feel about writing a new segment for In the Shadow of Narcissa. And then, depending on how I end up feeling about that, I’ll either write or vacuum. And try not to think about this indescribably stressful trip that is now looming — 3 days away. (And why I decided not to fly… I just don’t understand me sometimes.) (And my TSA Precheck number arrived yesterday — in plenty of time for that flight I’m now not taking.)

Okay. Have a beautiful Sunday, wherever you are in the world. And if you’d like to apply for the job of being my BRAIN, do get in touch. God knows there is often a vacancy there. Thanks for visiting, gang. I love you guys! See ya!

Oh, and the Stateside leg of the Conversations with Nick Cave (aka In Conversation, and Words + Music) begins in, like 5 days….. Can you believe that?  Where is the time fucking going??!!.

Okay. I leave you with this! (Yes, more soul-wreching Dalida! Always a good indication that my sanity is sort of sliding away… Enjoy, gang!)

“La petite maison bleue”

La petite maison bleue
Est envahie de silence
La maison de mon enfance
Me fait mal quand je la voisC’est pourtant plus fort que moi
J’y retournerai sans doute
Je reprendrai cette route
Qui mène à mes souvenirs

C’est ici que j’ai grandi
Que j’ai découvert la vie
Ces beaux jours s’enfuient déjà
Revibrant toujours en moi

La petite maison bleue
A mes yeux reste la même
C’est ici que ceux que j’aime
Ont connu des jours heureux

Ma jeunesse est restée là
Au détour de ce chemin
Ma jeunesse est restée là
Quelquepart dans ce jardin

La petite maison bleue
Est envahie de tristesse
Mais elle est pour moi quand même
La maison des jours heureux

La maison des jours heureux

c – 1968 Detto Mariano, Don Backy, Michel Jourdan

Those Furry Things Have Gotta Go!!!

Not a single solitary one of them has done any housework in weeks. And I have to say I can’t stand for it anymore. You know, they don’t even try to win me over with coy affection. Don’t sidle up to me, don’t entwine sensuously, don’t purr seductively in my face and whisper things like, ” I’m too pretty to clean.” (And trust me, you can get a lot of mileage out of that with me!!)

No. They don’t do anything close to that. They just fucking ignore me.

I am absolutely exhausted, gang. And I mean that in the most crucial way.

I cannot imagine how I am going to get my house clean before my mom gets here. On Tuesday morning, I have to drive over and get her and then bring her here — that’s two hours each way, so that gives me two hours in the car to explain to her why my house is sort of a mess.

I’m going to clean the bathrooms and vacuum and I think that’s going to be it. Dust is going to have to remain. Everywhere. Because I received some extensive notes from the director last night re: the ending section of Tell My Bones — more rewrites that I need to do before I get to NYC.

How I’m going to do this is a question that’s right up there with all the unanswerable questions that Man has conjured since Time began. Because my brain is absolutely fried right now. I only have enough brain power left to clean the house — however, it turns out that I can’t really do that right now. I have to revise the endless play instead.

If I were flying, I could write on the plane, and during the endless layover in Philadelphia, but I decided to drive instead. I’m starting to think that maybe driving there this time was a bad idea because I am just exhausted — not even factoring in the new needed rewrites. I’m starting to think I should have went for a non-stop flight to JFK, which would have been lots better than the convoluted plane trip to Stewart International which had the ridiculously long layover in Philadelphia to start with. I’m starting to think that every single thought I have, and every decision I come to, is just deranged and unhinged.

I wish I could hire someone to think for me from here on out. (And clean for me, too, although that’s just stupid because I am totally capable of cleaning my own house — when I’m not spending my entire life at my desk.)

Anyway.

Here in Crazeysburg, it is almost 1 o’clock in the afternoon and I am just now sort of getting out of bed. I’ve been awake since 4am, and have gotten in and out of bed a number of times, but the “getting back into bed” part has remained infinitely more attractive throughout the entire morning. I am still only loosely committed to this idea of finally starting the day.

You know, I printed out all of the director’s notes so that I could walk away from the desk and sort of focus and study them. And while I agree with them, and I understand his points, and I trust that his comments will lead to that coveted Pulitzer — I look at those notes at this point, and my poor brain is so over-extended, that I can’t process any of the words that are on the page.

I’m guessing this is only a temporary condition. And that maybe by as soon as tomorrow, I will be back to comprehending the English language once again. Today, I think, is going to be a complete washout.

I think I’ll just go back to bed and stare for awhile and see if anything whatsoever springs into my brain and motivates me. We shall see. Meanwhile, gang, enjoy your Saturday, wherever it finds you! Thanks for visiting. I love you guys. See ya.

(PS: It’s been a week now, and I’m actually loving my new grown-up car. It’s a fast little motherfucker…)

“FUN FUN FUN”

[Verse 1]
Well she got her daddy’s car and she cruised to the hamburger stand, now
Seems she forgot all about the library like she told her old man, now
But with the radio blasting goes cruising just as fast as she can now
And she’ll have fun, fun, fun till her daddy takes the T-bird away
(fun, fun, fun, ’till her daddy takes the T-bird away)

[Verse 2]
Well the girls can’t stand her cause she walks, looks and drives like an Ace, now
(You walk like an ace now, you walk like an ace)
She makes the Indy 500 look like a Roman chariot race, now
(You look like an ace now, you look like an ace)
A lot of guys try to catch her, but she leads them on a wild goose chase, now
And she’ll have fun, fun, fun till her daddy takes the T-bird away
(fun, fun, fun, ’till her daddy takes the T-bird away)

[Verse 3]
Well you knew all along that your dad was getting wise to you, now
(You shouldn’t have lied now, you shouldn’t have lied)
And since he took your set of keys you’ve been thinking that your fun is all through, now
(You shouldn’t have lied now, you shouldn’t have lied)

But you can come along with me cause we’ve got a lot of things to do, now
(You shouldn’t have lied now, you shouldn’t have lied)
And we’ll have fun, fun, fun now that daddy took the T-bird away
(fun, fun, fun, now her daddy took the T-bird away)
And we’ll have fun, fun, fun now that daddy took the T-bird away
(fun, fun, fun, now her daddy took the T-bird away)


[
Outro]
Wooo-ooo-Aaaah!
(fun, fun, now her daddy took the T-bird away
Fun, fun, now her daddy took the T-bird away)
Wooo-ooo-Aaaah!
(fun, fun, now her daddy took the T-bird away
Fun, fun, now her daddy took the T-bird away)
Wooo-ooo-Aaaah!
(fun, fun, now her daddy took the T-bird away
Fun, fun, now her daddy took the T-bird away)

c -1964 Brian Wilson, Mike Love

Jubilation, Baby!! It’s Done!

Yes, I finished the rewrites of Tell My Bones last night, and I spent today, tweaking things here & there and searching for the elusive typos…

And I just now sent copies off to the director, and to Sandra, and to Gus Van Sant, Sr. And now I want to simply collapse.

No, actually what I want to do is have a cigarette and a beer or something, but that’s not what’s going to happen. I don’t think…

No, I’m certain that’s not going to happen because I gave all the beer to the lawn care guys this morning and I’m too fucking tired to even think about leaving the house.

So. Collapse beer-less and cigarette-less is how it’s gonna play out tonight!

Nick Cave sent out not one but two Red Hand Files newsletters today!! So that was pretty darned exciting. For me, anyway, since I would appreciate it if he could send out one or two every day. They were quite interesting. You can read them there at the link.

Anyway.

My big adventure today was that when I drove my brand new Honda Civic to town to go grocery shopping very early this morning, I discovered one of those green garden spiders clinging to the trunk of my car! So, rather than let him get crushed on the highway or in the parking lot, I put him in my trunk and drove him home. And then took him out of the trunk and put him on one of my many, many morning glory vines. And he seemed extremely happy. He was quite the adventurer. I found him so interesting — you know, do spiders create their own realities? Did he want to go for a ride on the outside of a new car? Did I disappoint him by putting him in the trunk? Was he relieved? Grateful? Just disoriented and confused by me??

I don’t know what it is about me and spiders, but I do have quite a number of them — all different kinds. As long as they aren’t big enough for me to see, like, every single one of their eyes, I’m cool with it.

Okay, gang. I am absolutely beat. I can barely even spell now so I’m gonna close! I hope you had a terrific Tuesday, wherever you were and whatever you did!! Thanks for visiting! I love you guys. See ya.

Me vs. Everything in the World!

I saw this illustration and it just felt like me as a reasonably happy little girl, and then, behind me in the bed, was everything else imaginable in the world that was waiting for me.

When I actually was a young girl, I never really related to the Little Red Riding Hood story. All the virginal symbolism of it and the whole “girl meets wolf” thing. It held no appeal to me.

The only fairy tales that I actually related to were Beauty and the Beast (the old, non-Disney version) because Love & Kindness trump everything else in the world always; and Rumpelstiltskin because the helpless girl was forced into that horrible situation, then became queen, and then, as queen, tricked that mean little guy and got to keep her baby. I liked that story a lot.

And I also loved the story Peter Pan. And I mean, I really loved that story — I loved Peter and totally related to him. (Perhaps that says a lot about the way I still live, I’m not sure. I sure as hell didn’t grow up — didn’t do the “Wendy” thing. So who knows.)

Well, anyway. I loved that photo of the moon last night, up over my barn (see post below). I just find this village so mysterious and magical. I really do. Loyal readers of this lofty blog perhaps recall that after my 4th weird near-death experience, which came just prior to meeting that older man who died (that I wrote about a couple days ago), my life seemed to change so dramatically that I began to wonder if I had actually died in the near-death experience and just hadn’t figured that out yet.

The man was still alive when I moved here, but not for long afterward. And I wondered if maybe he had only been sent into my life to help me cross over in some way. I often felt, when I first moved here, that the transition to this actual house, to this intensely spirit-filled town, was me moving into some sort of “between world” — no longer alive but not accepting death yet, but not knowing it. And readers perhaps recall that right after I moved here, the Latter Day Saints came into my world in the most amazingly joyful way. It only added to the intensity of me not feeling like I was alive anymore. (It is so hard to explain this if you don’t live in Muskingum County because it involves all these ancient burial mounds around here that are 2000 years old; they are considered sacred ground to the Mormons.)

To be honest, I still often feel that way — that I am not really alive anymore but haven’t figured out yet that I’m dead.  Mostly because there is no way to prove that it’s not true.  You know, there is no concrete way to prove I’m still alive and not actually dead, because everything could just be a sort of fake reality that I only think I’m perceiving.

When I saw that moon last night, and how amazing it looked over my barn, and how amazing this town feels at night — wondering why on Earth a woman like me, a woman who was always so intensely urban, who always wore a little black dress & black high heels everywhere she went, why she even has a barn; well, once again, it made me feel like I’m not really alive anymore. That I’m in some strange in-between place and I only think I’m still alive. Because I was just never, ever like this before.

Wherever this is, it’s really beautiful and I really love it here. But, wow, gang; I am really getting tired. I know it’s because I am doing so much writing; just nonstop — bringing everything from inside to the outside, nonstop for the last 12 months. Including the TV pilot (Cleveland’s Burning) that I went to LA about, which is still sitting in need of certain key people and very soon, I have to pitch that whole project to the Head of Programming of a huge streaming platform and I don’t have those key people in place that they asked for because I immediately wrote a novel, launched into that micro-video production company with Peitor, finished writing a play with Sandra, then wrote 2 entirely different versions of another play, became overwhelmed by the Girl in the Night  stories, and on and on…

Everything coming out of me and nothing has landed anywhere yet. And now the trip back to NYC is looming next week. It’s exhausting. So  much “outgoing” and absolutely no incoming. Well, certain indications of it, but nothing concrete yet. Just constant “outgo.”

Yesterday afternoon, the horrifically loud carbon monoxide alarm went off in my basement. Not a thing any homeowner wants to hear. I was working on Tell My Bones up in my room and suddenly it started shrieking. I went down to the scary 118-year-old basement, and down there, the alarm was just deafening. I couldn’t get the alarm to shut off, and for a few minutes, I stood there and stared at it, knowing I should call the fire department. But wondering if this might not just be the best thing in the long run.

I eventually did go get my phone and was about to dial 911 when the alarm shut off. And none of the other alarms in the house ever came on, and God knows, the house is well ventilated with 21 wide open windows. But, Jesus, I am just so tired.

St. Christopher actually was a saint, don’t let them persuade you otherwise. He did exist; he’s not some myth, although his actual name was slightly different. And if you talk to St. Christopher, he listens. You can actually feel him listening to you.  You know, I am still doing that segment-intending stuff, trying to survive my life in 5-hour chunks right now, but still not knowing how I am going to survive that trip back to NYC. All the driving and then dealing with everything I have to deal with there. But then I heard St. Christopher in my head, saying that he was going to take care of the whole trip, and not to worry. That I was going to have a great time.

I believe him. He is the patron saint of travelers, after all. Especially of 12-year-old girls who are suddenly driving grown-up cars…

Well, anyway. That’s where I am today. Not really the best head space, but I’m trying. I must get back to the play. It is almost done.  So I will close this. I’ll leave you with the 3 songs I was listening to on my phone this morning, around 4am, when I was wondering if I’d ever finish this play and/or even bother to get out of bed again. Thanks for visiting! I love you guys. See ya.

Me, A Grown Up!

All right, well. I got the new car.

No CD player. It’s all about streaming.

What the fuck? Do they not know how many CDs I still own? And even though I do stream a ton of music, there are hundreds of  CDs that I don’t have in any sort of streaming version, including some Nick Cave stuff and several early Tom Petty CDs. I’m not sure how they think I’m going to be able to pull out of my driveway without certain songs on certain days.

I don’t actually have a driveway, but still. The thought of ripping CDs onto my laptop then transferring them to my phone– I am not a Geek. I am a crazed, lunatic writer. I do not have time to do stuff like that anymore.

That pissed me off so much that I almost got right back out of the car and said, “Take this back, please, and give me the old Honda Fit.” This grown-up business really sucks.

But here is the car I got. This is not the actual car. I don’t have a showroom to park it in. But I am too lazy to go downstairs right now and photograph the actual car. But it looks just like this, so don’t worry.

2019 Molten Lava Pearl Honda Civic LX 4 Door Automatic (CVT) 2.0L I4 DOHC 16V i-VTEC Engine FWD

It does weird things like drives for you automatically for 10 seconds. It has a radar up front that automatically applies your brakes if someone ahead of you puts on their brakes. It keeps pace with the car in front you: if that car speeds up or slows down, you do, too. It has automatic lights so that you can blind people with your brights at night without meaning to — or you can drive in complete darkness, if you prefer to not blind people. (That seems to be my option: blind others or drive in total darkness.)

The other thing it does, which totally cracks me up because I love language: if you inch outside of your lane at either side, an orange warning comes on in front of you that reads: Lane Departure.

That word “departure” is what cracks me up. Who thought of that? They probably thought “watch what you’re doing, asshole” was too offensive to the driver, or that “put your fucking phone down & pay attention, you’re driving!” was too long to cram into that little orange space.

But the thing that disappoints me the most about the Civic is that it does indeed go really fast, but it is a more solid vehicle than the Fit so you do not feel like you’re going really fast. There is no soaring sort of thrill. So what is the point of going really fast? I might as well just go the fucking speed limit, you know? And save on gas and stuff like that.

They are forcing me to grow up. And I do not appreciate it. However, it is mine for the next 3 years.

As I was leaving the Honda dealership in the new car yesterday, across the street was a used car lot and right out there in front was a used Hellcat. It was in a bright metallic lime green color, not my favorite. But still. I looked at that car as I drove away and my heart sank… (Those Hellcats go from 0 to 210 mph in about 3 seconds. I realize there’s no earthly reason to do that if you’re not drag racing, but still. It just made me feel so sad.)

Anyway. So now I look like a grown up when I’m in my perfectly grown up car. (I’m not one, but no one will know that.)

Okay, well. Sandra and I actually spoke on the phone for 4 seconds yesterday. I was in the Honda dealership when she finally called me and I couldn’t talk. So now we are playing phone tag. A step up from texting…

The play rewrites are, of course, not finished. I’m getting stressed and depressed and all that stuff that I do so well. But I decided late last night  to do some radical segment-intending, 24/7, for the next several days and pull myself past this. I usually only do segment-intending when I’m getting ready to get into the car. I have two profound needs whenever I’m driving. The main one is to not kill any animals out here in the middle of nowhere where there are so many scurrying about, and the other is to not wreck the car, since I am only borrowing it for 3 years and then giving it back.

For me, my segment-intending always includes giving appreciation to St. Francis (animals) and St. Christopher (the car). And then of course to Christ because he’s that thing in my life that tries to keep me from generally going insane.  But segment-intending doesn’t really involve saints unless you’re me and your mind chooses to do weird shit like that.

But segment-intending works extremely well. So I decided to break the day/night into 5-hour segments, so every 5 hours, I visualize the next 5 hours going really smoothly and me not stressing out — staying calm, happy, even.

So far, it is working great. It really is. I’m in my second segment right now and not freaking out about anything at all, and only thinking of death as a viable solution in the most meager, fleeting sort of way. (Just kidding about that.)

And I slept like a rock for 5 hours last night, woke up and wasn’t worried about anything at all. I feel like I have this sort of mental protective force-field all around me, keeping out the garbage thoughts, and helping me just stay calm. It really is interesting, how my mind can actually feel it — feel protected, I mean. From my own thoughts.

However, on that note, my mind will feel even better when I finish the rewrites on the play so I better get started here. (Oh, I’ll mention here that it looks like all those additional Conversations with Nick Cave for January 2020 that went on sale yesterday sold out in, like, 4 minutes. I think this means that he is never going to stop conversing. This is not a judgement at all, but an observation.)

Okay!! I leave you with this song I used to really just love. It was breakfast-listening music today and I hadn’t heard it in years. I still loved it.  It is such a soaring song. “The Whole of the Moon,” from The Waterboys album, This is the Sea (1985). Enjoy. Have a super Saturday, wherever you are in the world, gang. Thanks for visiting. I love you guys. See ya!

“The Whole Of The Moon”

I pictured a rainbow
You held it in your hands
I had flashes
But you saw the plan
I wandered out in the world for years
While you just stayed in your room
I saw the crescent
You saw the whole of the moon
The whole of the moonYou were there at the turnstiles
With the wind at your heels
You stretched for the stars
And you know how it feels
To reach too high
Too far
Too soon
You saw the whole of the moon

I was grounded
While you filled the skies
I was dumbfounded by truths
You cut through lies
I saw the rain-dirty valley
You saw Brigadoon
I saw the crescent
You saw the whole of the moon

I spoke about wings
You just flew
I wondered, I guessed and I tried
You just knew
I sighed
But you swooned
I saw the crescent
You saw the whole of the moon
The whole of the moon

With a torch in your pocket
And the wind at your heels
You climbed on the ladder
And you know how it feels
To get too high
Too far
Too soon
You saw the whole of the moon
The whole of the moon

Unicorns and cannonballs
Palaces and piers
Trumpets, towers, and tenements
Wide oceans full of tears
Flags, rags, ferry boats
Scimitars and scarves
Every precious dream and vision
Underneath the stars

Yes, you climbed on the ladder
With the wind in your sails
You came like a comet
Blazing your trail
Too high
Too far
Too soon
You saw the whole of the moon

c – 1985 Mike Scott

And Away We Go!!

[First, here’s a quick update. I just saw some of the morning glories blooming outside my backdoor and could not resist posting them here!]

{Okay, back to the original post!!}

Yes, tomorrow morning, I’m trading in my beloved Honda Fit for a Honda Civic, and so I will drive to NY again and not fly.

As much as I don’t really feel like driving for 10 hours there and 10 hours back right now, I can’t grasp giving up 25,000 frequent flyer miles just to fly 500 miles and spend a minimum of 6 hours doing that. So I’ll just drive.

And don’t even speak to me about just buying a plane ticket. Those flights from here to that little airport in NY, 500 miles away, cost a fortune. I can of course fly direct to JFK or LaGuardia, and it’s faster and cheaper, but then I have to deal with getting to the train and taking that up to Rhinebeck. So, you know, it’s like, Jesus Christ, I’ll just get in my car and drive.

I was planning on leasing another Honda Fit because I really love that little car and it goes really fast. It just zips along. And you can park it anywhere because it’s really small. Plus it’s a hatchback that has back seats that fold down, so you can transport anything.

However, there is a sale right now on Honda Civics, and a Civic is cheaper than  a Fit right now, so I guess I’ll upgrade and become more like a respectable person. (For some reason, I feel like only grown-ups drive Honda Civics.) I guess we’ll see how it goes because that’s the car I’m getting. I realize that I do have to grow up at some point, but I wasn’t planning on doing that this year.

Well.

Another beautiful, beautiful morning here. I woke up and everything actually felt sacred. The peace and quiet of everything. Only one bird singing, and even the cicadas are dying off now. It was mostly just crickets. And it was really cool out — back down into the 50s again, which I wasn’t expecting, so when I went downstairs, all the windows were of course wide open, and the ceiling fans were whirring merrily away. It was fucking freezing! Those poor cats.

But, you know — they do have those handy fur coats…

However. The world felt sacred to me this morning, and I felt a little vulnerable within it. Like, I don’t really understand who I am anymore. I just don’t.

Yesterday was interesting. Wayne was back in NYC from his trip to Nepal, so we chatted on the phone for a while. His trip sounds like it was amazing, frankly. He was just tramping around — in the towns and in the foothills of the Himalayas, mounting 200-year-old staircases to get blessed by tiny living goddesses (meaning little 4-year-old girls); just doing whatever presented itself.

The thing with my song “Breaking Glass,” was an interesting story.  He did actually access the song through my Wikipedia page, and from there, through the Smithsonian website. He was specifically talking about me to some Nepali guy that he was tramping around with, and that sort of baffled me. But what baffled me more was when Wayne said, “I always really loved that song, ‘Breaking Glass’. It was one of my favorites of yours.”

I honestly did not know he even knew that song, let alone knew it well enough for him to have an opinion about it. Or to even talk about me to some stranger in Nepal. I don’t recall Wayne going to more than one of my gigs, even though we were married. I had the impression he didn’t care much about my music. So really, it was just baffling to me.

And then I mentioned to him that I would be in an airbnb for 3 nights in Manhattan because I was going to see Nick Cave. And then Wayne says,  “I remember you telling me about that first time you saw him, when all those people in the audience were only into murder.”

I was absolutely astounded by this. When would I have told him that? Not only was that show over 30 years ago, but it had happened several years before Wayne & I even met. Why did he even remember me saying something like that? (I mean, I was really upset by that first concert back then — 1988, I think. Because I thought Nick Cave was a genius; a really brilliant songwriter, even though his songs were really dark. But he wasn’t an actual murderer, he was a songwriter. And the audience behaved more like they found him to be a really gifted murderer. The whole fucking show truly upset me. Obviously enough to tell Wayne about it at some point, several years after it had happened, even though I have no memory of doing that.)

Still.

I honestly don’t think of Wayne as someone who even likes me very much, let alone as someone who ever listened to anything I ever said. And I feel like, you know, he stays in touch because he feels sorry for me, and doesn’t want me to accidentally set myself on fire or something. So the whole thing just threw me.

I’m so serious, people. Being married to me is the furthest thing from a picnic that you can possibly imagine. Basically, I want to have sex 15 times a day and then the moment that’s done, I need you to stop talking to me because I need to write. And then I have this really unattractive place where my voice goes if you’re really trying my patience.

That’s about it; the entirety of ‘me’.  Oh, and then the ‘f’ word nonstop.

I have two ex-husbands who are really kind to me. And I don’t understand why. I accept it because I love kindness. I try to be kind in return, because there’s a whole lot of stuff I do remember and I know darn well my marriages go so much better for the husband when I’m not actually in them. So yesterday just threw me. I was trying to remember who I really was.

I did a lot of work on those final pages of the play yesterday, but mostly what I came to was an understanding that a whole lot had to happen in a short space and it all had to be really moving; be tragic and then truly uplifting. So I’ve got my work cut out for me, but on we go.

And as soon as these pages are done, I will have some breathing room, finally. I can get back to In the Shadow of Narcissa, and Girl in the Night: Erotic Love Letters to the Muse. So I’m super excited. (Here’s something funny: I misspelled “erotic” there and so spell-check suggested “aortic.” I think that in this instance, considering my sense of Eros, my Muse, my mind — the words erotic and aortic are actually kind of interchangeable.)

Okay, gang! Have a thoroughly happy Thursday, wherever you are in the world! Thanks for visiting. I leave you with what was in my Instagram feed this morning. I’m guessing you can see why I prefer this to having to think about my actual life. Okay! I love you guys. See ya.

È meravigliosa!

Yes!!! It’s wonderful!!!

I finally made it to the end of the most important segment of the play last night. And I could not be more delighted — even though it’s a death scene, it goes to a tragic place. But it is relived within a dream, so it doesn’t have the same kind of sadness to it that it would have had in “real-time.”

And there is a sense of jubilation woven all around the tragedy, creating absolute (controlled) chaos. Helen is in agonizing despair, crying out Psalm 22, while the choir is in this jubilant refrain of Didn’t My Lord Deliver Daniel?, as Helen’s grandson, who has waited all his life to get a job on the railroad, finally gets that job up in Louisville, and then gets crushed by a train — but he goes gloriously to the sweet hereafter in all that joyous singing, while Helen’s heart breaks into a million pieces.

And all of it takes place within Helen’s dream where she is inside one of her paintings and the ghosts of her family come “alive” again.

I have been struggling with that whole section — 16 pages — for a couple of weeks now. It felt so amazing to finally finish it last night.

As usual, the Muse was working overtime and I could not have felt more appreciative.

Well, I did indeed make the 100 mile trek to get the less-than-10 minute interview for the TSA Precheck yesterday. And yes, I did manage to get a wee bit lost and my iPhone maps decided to stop speaking to me, only wanting to show me images while I was trying to drive, lost, on a strange  freeway. Through some miracle of divine guidance, I finally found the darn place and made it right on time for my interview. But, man, what a lot of driving, a lot of gasoline, and then the “check oil” light came on halfway home… all that for a 10-minute interview.

So I called my sales rep at Honda when I got home, and I will leave it to him to let me know if I should come in and trade in the car for a new lease right now. I am so close to being at my maximum allowed mileage on the current lease, and now I need an oil change…

Plus, yesterday, I was trying to book my flight to NY — I want to fly into Stewart International because I’ll primarily be staying in Rhinebeck with Sandra, and as you can guess, there are no flights that come anywhere close to being a direct flight between here and a small airport like that one.

I have a variety of layover choices in Philadelphia, that range from 2 hours to about 8 hours. I’m not exaggerating.  I could make about 7 commuter train trips between Philadelphia and NYC in that 8-hour layover. A direct flight between here and Stewart International would be 1 hour.  But since there is no such thing as a direct flight between here and there, the minimum travel time is 6 hours, including me having to leave by 4:15am to make the one-hour drive to the airport to catch the first flight out at 6am.

And all of that would cost me 25,000 frequent flyer miles!!!!! (Round trip). I’m, like, you’re kidding, right? I can go to fucking Alaska for that. So now, if I do lease a new car right away, I think I’m gonna go ahead and drive again. It’s a 10-hour drive. And I can leave at whatever time in the morning I want to. But I can’t do it if I don’t have the new car yet, because I’m too close to going over my max miles.

So we’ll see what the rep says when he calls me back today.

Meanwhile, I am at last nearing the end of the play.  I have one final section to revise. Between 15-20 more pages, tops. And I don’t have the luxury of it taking me an additional 2 weeks, so I’m hoping to have the rewrites finished here momentarily!! (Or, you know, maybe a week. That still gets the play to NYC a week before I get there.)

A quick update re: the sudden hashtag keanu situation in my Instagram feed — I’m actually finding it kind of soothing. Having my Instagram feed positively inundated with harmless photos of Keanu, night & day. It helps neutralize the somewhat emotional knee-jerk responses that I have to a lot of the other things/people I’m following. So I think I’m gonna keep it. A sort of social-media therapy: hashtag keanu; a new route to bliss.

You know, for many years, I was very good friends with a journalist who wrote primarily for Rolling Stone, the New York Times, etc. — big media outlets. And he interviewed a ton of movie stars in his career (he’s now a talking-head on a sports show). And the only movie star that he had nice things to say about was Keanu. He genuinely liked him.

I met Keanu at a party once in NYC, a million years ago, and I won’t say I actually liked him. He did something that insulted me — he looked down the front of my little black dress. I know it was very funny when they did that to the stepmom in Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure, but I had spent a fortune on that little black cocktail dress I was wearing, and I was in the process of being stood-up by my date because he was stuck in a midtown recording studio and was not going to make it to the party.

And it wasn’t just Keanu who was coming onto me that night while I wore that dress; a number of men were. And some were very nice & polite about it. But when the one guy you’ve gone to all that trouble for, doesn’t show up, then it doesn’t matter if you end up being the tallest, prettiest gal in the room; you just don’t give a fuck, you know?

I’m sure that on any other evening, any other night, any other year, Keanu is indeed very likable.

All righty!! I’m gonna get started here. I leave you with the song I was listening to this morning — another little love letter to the Muse!! I used to just love this song when I was 7 years old. Really, gang. I played this record all the time and sang along to it, too! I woke up at 4am today, thinking about this song for the first time in decades. And so of course I found it on Youtube.  I sang along to it as the cats ate their breakfasts and they seemed to enjoy it. Purrrhaps you will, too! Thanks for visiting, gang! I love you guys. See ya!

“Call Me”

If you’re feeling sad and lonely
There’s a service I can render
Tell the one who loves you only
I can be so warm and tender
Call me
Don’t be afraid, you can call me
Maybe it’s late, but just call me
Tell me, and I’ll be around

When it seems your friends desert you
There’s somebody thinking of you
I’m the one who’ll never hurt you
Maybe that’s because I love you

Call me
Don’t be afraid, you can call me
Maybe it’s late, but just call me
Tell me, and I’ll be around

Now don’t forget me
‘Cause if you let me
I will always stay by you
You’ve got to trust me
That’s how it must be
There’s so much that I can do

If you call I’ll be right with you
You and I should be together
Take this love I long to give you
I’ll be at your side forever

Call me
Please, call me
Call me
Tell me, and I’ll be around

Call me
Don’t be afraid, you can call me
Maybe it’s late, but just call me

c – 1965 Tony Hatch

14 Free Seconds While I Drink My Final Coffee of Summer!!

All righty!! The Labor Day holiday is here! The last gasp of summer is upon us!

I noticed quite a few cars heading off to work this morning, around 5:30am. So I guess a number of my neighbors are working on this fine American holiday that’s supposed to celebrate not working!

Ah, well.

I’m working, too, of course! But yesterday, I finally finished that segment of the play that I’d been struggling with for over 2 weeks, sent it off to the director in NYC, and he really loved it. And I actually do, too.

I finally, finally nailed it. And it only amounts to a lowly 2  and a 1/2 pages (!!), but it’s a story arc that shifts us from joy into something dark and turbulent, and none of it takes place in real-time; it all takes place within a painting within a dream. So it just took me forever.

The next segment is tragic, but I have a grasp already on how I want it to play out. So I’m feeling really good. I don’t mind working my life away.

And speaking of working our lives away… this morning, Nick Cave announced a million more Conversations in Europe for January 2020 !!!

Or maybe just 8? Whatever the true number, more Conversations are coming in January.  However, I’m still not seeing Crazeysburg on that list of upcoming shows, and we are only a hop, skip, and a jump (and a jump and a jump and a jump and a jump and a jump and a jump and a plane and a bus ride) from let’s say, Germany… and there are at least 14 people here who would likely be willing to brave the January weather and make that 3-block trek in the ice and snow to our humble Town Hall… I guess 14 people will simply have to wait for Providence to shine upon them some other time.

Okay, gang. If you’re Stateside and having a cookout today, or going to the lake, or any of those really fun & cool things that I will once again not be doing, have a really great time!! Thanks for visiting! I leave you with what I was listening to this final morning of summer… a true heartbreaker, as we say goodbye to what we long for. But so very lovely.  I love you guys! See ya!!

“Que La Vie Était Jolie”

Que la vie était jolie
Près de toi au long des jours
Aujourd’hui tout est fini
Dans les bras d’un autre amour

Au matin s’en est allé
Celui que j’ai tant aimé
Et je pleure sans espoir
Sans espoir de le revoir

Je voudrai ne plus penser
A la joie à nos baisers
Malgré tout j’entends sa voix
Qui me dit tous ces mots-là

Mes amis ont essayé
De m’aider à oublier
Mais je reste sans désir
Je suis triste à en mourir

Une fille est à son bras
Y’a pas longtemps, c’était moi
C’était moi qui l’embrassais
Et j’y croirai à jamais

Que la vie était jolie
Près de toi au long des jours
Aujourd’hui tout est fini
Mais je t’attendrai toujours

c – 1963 DANYEL GERARD, DANIEL HORTIS