Showing posts with label confidential. Show all posts
Showing posts with label confidential. Show all posts

rat tv

for Sarah, in Montreal

The first several months I lived in LA was undoubtedly the loneliest period of my life. I didn't know a soul when I moved here, and had no one to hang out with. Well, I sort of knew another blogger I'd had some interaction with previously, but she turned out to be nothing whatsoever like her online persona - so that went precisely nowhere. My (now ex-) husband was gone, all the time. He worked a lot, but it wasn't until the end of last year that I found out he had some extracurricular activities going as well. Christ I keep getting off track. Let me try again.

I worked from home, for myself, running a dumb little design business that nearly killed me. I'd wake up, start coffee, and be chained to my desk until bedtime. I barely left the apartment for food, much less to go meet people. Our first loft in downtown was across the street from a popular bar. At night while I'd be working I'd hear everyone pouring out of that bar, joking and talking. I'd hear the music and laughter and my heart would just ache. Sometimes I would sit in the window and look down, watching people drift out onto the sidewalk, wishing more than anything I had some friends to get a drink with. After the bar would close I'd stare at the dumpster in the alley behind the bar, where the rats would scurry to and fro, scrambling for trash to bring back to the sewer.

I called it Rat TV.

That was my life. Rat TV.

Mason used to give me hell. You can't tell me there aren't cafes around there. It's LA, there must be a cafe nearby.

There's one literally below my building.

Then go there! Take your computer and go work there. You will meet people, I promise.

I never did though. Social anxiety and a feeling of being terribly, irrationally intimidated by the cooler-than-I denizens of Los Angeles kept me cloistered up in my aerie.

Eventually we met some people in our building. They were lovely, decent people - but it wasn't a love connection. They were just cool, friendly couples to socialize with, until I met others with whom I really, truly clicked. And that? Took years. And a hell of a lot of good luck. I didn't feel like I had a "tribe" until a solid 2-3 years after I'd moved to LA. Much of it has disbanded nowadays but I've stayed tight with those who are worth the effort.

The point I'm trying to make is making friends is a fucking bitch. Moving to a new city can be so brutal. And I guess I don't have any advice or insight, and hopefully it isn't grossly patronizing to say, but I'm not too worried about anyone with the chutzpah to go a music festival alone. I'd wager that by the time Osheaga rolls around next year, you'll be cross-checking your schedule with another music fan or two. Or three.

Rock on.

okay I guess I'm going there after all

Quickly want to share an excerpt from the best thing I've read yet about the attack in Paris: The Blame For the Charlie Hebdo Murders. Now, I try to be more or less apolitical with my blog ever since I realized, with the help of some constructive criticism, that I have a problem with tone where religion is concerned. But twelve people are dead and it's difficult for me to sit on my hands when more influential, further-reaching internet pundits are victim blaming and spouting off ignorant shit about tolerance and moderation and the "sacredness" of "rich traditions".

So in the interest of doing what little I can to counter-disseminate:

The murders today in Paris are not a result of France’s failure to assimilate two generations of Muslim immigrants from its former colonies. They’re not about French military action against the Islamic State in the Middle East, or the American invasion of Iraq before that. They’re not part of some general wave of nihilistic violence in the economically depressed, socially atomized, morally hollow West—the Paris version of Newtown or Oslo. Least of all should they be “understood” as reactions to disrespect for religion on the part of irresponsible cartoonists. 
They are only the latest blows delivered by an ideology that has sought to achieve power through terror for decades. It’s the same ideology that sent Salman Rushdie into hiding for a decade under a death sentence for writing a novel, then killed his Japanese translator and tried to kill his Italian translator and Norwegian publisher. The ideology that murdered three thousand people in the U.S. on September 11, 2001. The one that butchered Theo van Gogh in the streets of Amsterdam, in 2004, for making a film. The one that has brought mass rape and slaughter to the cities and deserts of Syria and Iraq. That massacred a hundred and thirty-two children and thirteen adults in a school in Peshawar last month. That regularly kills so many Nigerians, especially young ones, that hardly anyone pays attention. 
Because the ideology is the product of a major world religion, a lot of painstaking pretzel logic goes into trying to explain what the violence does, or doesn’t, have to do with Islam. Some well-meaning people tiptoe around the Islamic connection, claiming that the carnage has nothing to do with faith, or that Islam is a religion of peace, or that, at most, the violence represents a “distortion” of a great religion. (After suicide bombings in Baghdad, I grew used to hearing Iraqis say, “No Muslim would do this.”) Others want to lay the blame entirely on the theological content of Islam, as if other religions are more inherently peaceful—a notion belied by history as well as scripture. 
A religion is not just a set of texts but the living beliefs and practices of its adherents.

(emphasis mine) 

Thank you for reading. And thinking.

---

confidential to Kelle: Yeah you bet your phony ass this is in response to that ignoramus of a co-exploiter you call Dad. I know you read here, because you're too frantic of a whitewasher to not keep track of your detractors. I know your ex-fans read here, too, because my blog pops up as the number one search result for "Kelle Hampton criticism" - a distinction of which I'm proud and one backed up by the emails that trickle in, slowly but steadily, from those ex-fans.

While I have you: fuck you, for the disgustingness that is publicly monetizing your children's baths. You accepted money to post on the internet, for the uncontrolled consumption of thousands of strangers, intimate photos of your children. In the bath. LOOK AT YOUR LIFE. LOOK AT YOUR CHOICES. 

lost and found

for Kayla

She knew it was missing the moment she woke up. Goddamnit, she thought. Not again. Splashes of morning collected in the twisted sheets, spilling and pooling but refusing to disappear when she pulled all four hundred threads-per-inch over her head. It warmed her in patches, soaking through the cotton, waiting cheerfully for her reemergence. I'll be here when you're ready! I'm California sunshine, and I'm utterly fucking relentless!

As always, she started with the bathroom mirror, padding barefoot across a floor that felt especially cold and hard. But it wasn't there as she held herself briefly in a series of practiced poses, angles and arcs that flattered her body's better features. Not in her stomach, forgivingly flat before breakfast, and not in her biceps, pale sinew that betrayed or belied its age depending on the light.

She looked for it in the shower, turning over thoughts like foreign coins, the flip sides of which are interesting, but rarely surprising. Nope. Not there. Not today.

Drinking coffee a little while later, she gazed around a room at furnishings chosen at no small cost of consideration or price. At books and photo albums and nearly four decades of mementos - the things that would represented her sum and substance, when she ceased to present her corporeal substance to the world anymore. But it wasn't to be found in any of that, either. (And she'd known better than to look anyway.)

It wasn't in the faces that filled her day. Not the one that supervised her on how to spend it or in those of whom she supervised herself. Not in friendly smiles, not in nods of respect, not in the appraising, approaching eyes of men on the sidewalk - glances which seemed to grow shorter all the time. She rarely returned them at all these days, for fear of experiencing just how short.

It was hiding particularly well, she realized, when not even a bit of it was to be found in her lover's eyes at the end of the day. Always the last place you look, she thought wryly, noticing how late it had gotten. A few more hours and she'd have to call off the search until tomorrow.

Then the letter came. It rang itself into her inbox with an optimistic chime, and she reached for her phone. Launched her mail app. Recognized the name. Opened the email. Read the words. Understood the import. She felt the compliment bloom in her brain, then float down to her heart where it took root and bifurcated in a single, delicious burst. To the tips of her fingers it raced, this relief in remembering that Yes, okay, sometimes it's impossible to see myself, but it is there.

It is there.

She boxed it up in steel-reinforced gratitude and copy-pasted it to the clipboard of her mind, where it would be easily accessible for at least another twelve hours before slinking off in the dead of night, luring her into the next round of hide-and-go-seek.

4 U

Confidential to mah boys:

A belated Valentine, but it's been a while since I did one of these...

TOP TEN CONVERSATION HEARTS 

Thanks for being particularly awesome and supportive friends lately.  Luv u guise.