Saturday, September 17, 2011

A Manifesto of Sorts

Quote of the Day:
The greatest weapon against stress is our ability
to choose one thought over another.
~William James~

Current Local Weather:
Overcast but finally,
albeit after too long of a time,
hopeful for health.

Currently on my iPod:
"Takin It To the Streets"
Taylor Hicks
Do I Make You Proud

Dear Friends, Family and my Family of Friends,

I sat down at about 4am yesterday morning and wrote a letter to a friend, but really it was more for myself (yeah, yeah. narcissism...whatever) . I woke up and was extremely bothered by where I was, and not in reality (well, that would be a lie and you'll see why in the following post), but in my soul. I just HAD to get it out of me and I wasn't going to even attempt to give in to the sleep fairies hovering around my foggy glasses until it was on paper, or at the very least, electronic paper.

So, here it goes. FYI: As compared to my older posts, this post is decidedly sans kitschy photos and references to anything but the real, too-sick-to-care (both mentally and physically, and for good measure let's just add in emotionally, too) what others think of me, me.

Dear ____ (name has been changed to absolutely nothing to protect the innocent)

I guess this is going to be one of those nights where sleep teases me with fits of thought, restless writing streaks and the casual anxiety that has become commonplace in my life these days...

So, what happens when C doesn't sleep?
Someone ends up with a long letter in their inbox. Therapeutic for me, amusement for you, win-win all around.

The last month or so has lent me considerable perspective as a human being on what life means, at least in my opinion. I've been half-assed delving from time to time in the writing of my medically dramatic, not too serious memoir. But as I was laying in the bed at memorial that last afternoon, after the custody mediation, I thought to myself...why would anyone want to read shit about me?

Sure, I have a following of jazz fans, but in writing this, that's neither here nor there. I almost have to start over in my "Non-fiction book writing career" if I want to make anything of myself and in promotion of this hopeful-to-sell-before-the-second-coming kinda deal.

So I wondered and thought and thunk and kerplunked while staring at the beautiful rain, albeit cold rain, outside my window on floor 7-5 at Memorial Hospital and came up with this instead: (One of the very kind nursing assistants, a little numb in white/gray matter asked, why don't you watch TV, get your mind off which I replied with a nice as I could be tone while feeling like I'm dying, I'm a writer sans pen, to get my mind off things, I decidedly place my mind on other things and write in my head for a later date...) A book about searching for life among the almost dead.

Of course my medical catastrophes will be enriched with literary license, and my critical and unfiltered potty mouth and sense of humor will also be present. But, this will largely be about my travels writing the jazz book, finding joy in cooking for dozens of people and seeing their careers blossom right in front of my eyes at the retreats and how writing and immersing myself feet first in the literary community and living through hell, has taught me to seek life among the living dead (I.e. the 9-5 cubicle, taco bell eating, pale skinned, illiterate, placated by mass media, plagued with papparazzi envy, celebrity lovin, if-it's-at-Michaels-it-MUST-be art society we're forced to live in.).

I'm so tired of professionals that live with their professionalism written on pseudo wood plaques on their little professional office desks, looking down on people like me, you and pretty much everyone in my little but loving circle of friends. As artists, we're not stupid, no matter how big or small our lives turn out to be. All art, even the bad shit, has a purpose, in turn, allowing purpose and a meaningful life to enrich the lives of those who create it.

Office professionals, salesmen, lawyers, truck drivers (a lot of them write...I could do around all day and think of things to write...) wait staff, nurses, doctors, HR administrators...they've all got potential to reach and find their purpose in life through their jobs too. However, when one allows their job to sequester them to a life where shopping at Wally World is the only activity they do and art means posters of rock bands and Debbie Gibson on their ceiling and American Idol is the only time music invades their brain, then they become, by no fault other than their own, the true outcasts of what our society should be.

Alas, this isn't the case. People like me, you...the ones that end up living under a bridge after poor sales of their first novel or book on jazz, are the outcasts in our own ways. After being told that the career that I've busted my ass on since 2006 is not a real career by a decidedly (at least in her own mind) important person in our little community known as the Springs, I felt defeated. Downtrodden. Cast among the homeless and almost-dead, invisible crowd with too much socially unacceptable hair and drool in ALL the wrong places. But I realize that this "professional" is right. I don't have a "job." Instead I took a long and winding road that is less traveled than it should be. I followed a dream and instead of it being a job (a word so deftly shared by that poor sap of a man in the bible...your friend and mine, Job) I have passion and life within me despite my situation...and this is something that shares a lion's share of hope that resides deep among my too often situational/circumstantial depression....I must...REPEAT...MUST allow this feeling to remain omnipresent in my life instead of that ho-hum complacency so many others have allowed their lives to embody.

Does this thought and subsequent thoughts that will reign upon my consciousness in the near days mean that I've fully realized my goal of becoming an arts snob? Hmmm...not so sure. But I worry. Hell, if I got paid to worry I could build adjoining cabins for all of my friends (so we never have to be too far or too close in our nonrelationships) in Telluride. These would be so grand that they'd make those celebrity dwellings look like a wanna-be architect/toddler with legos and blue prints, built them. Also, as a mother, I've learned that worrying often leads to nothing other than gray hair. (Good reminder to have my sharpie out so I can touch them up) Worry is my current major in the university of life. As a matter of fact, I'm a bonafide doctoral candidate in the subject waiting to present my dissertation any day now.

Hopefully my anxiety will allow me to graduate from worry to okay-ness with not just any life, but my life. (insert any Billy Joel song at this point in the blog and you'll have a great soundtrack)

Hopefully my imaginary paycheck forged by my worrying mind will turn into a real one. can dream, right?

So...I'm meeting with a web designer on Monday, for lunch. I've been talking with him for quite a while. Jim Lewis. (This makes the fourth, yeppers...FOURTH Jim Lewis I know.) Weird. But I spoke with him eons ago about my sites and he's never let me forget. A true salesman. He even called to check on me in the hospital. Hmmm...I hope he's not stalking me. But then again, if he is, does that make me a celebrity?

Time to put my money where my mouth is or whatever that saying is. I have friends on standby that are willing to advertise on their sites, my editorial services (1000.00/manuscript isn't unheard of, right? ...I suppose it's standard fare for someone of my the literary community) and query writing services.

I'm going to fight for what I believe to be a real dream, not what anyone could quite call...a hobby. And also, fight to move up the ladder, more aggressively so, than the past. I had been quite aggressive (believe it or not) until my ass found a new home at Memorial during my preggo days w/ Miss Natty Poo. I'm going to break this ridiculous cycle of dependence/neediness/circumstantial everything that is so fucking far from my actual character that I don't even recognize who I am most days.

I suppose writing this book will help.

Writing letters like this certainly does and is more to my chagrin than yours, I'm sure.

On that note, Natty Poo is awake and in need of a bottle and changing. Ta-Ta my dearest reader...or two.

Yours in Manifestos, Magic Cups and Mostly Memorable Mommy Moments,