Tag Archives: literature

The Importance Of Being Busy

14 Aug

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The office is dead, the show is in work-runs, The Gnome has swollen up to three times her size, I’m on my 12th cup of Keurig, and Cecil just dropped off her application.

…This is what makes “news” for the week, aside from the depressing stuff.

…Depressing stuff that is slamming every news outlet and social media page, for good reason, yet there is only so much a person can take, becoming so saturated and consumed by it all.

I understand it.  I take it in.  I choose to process it privately. 

Two of my teachers passed this week, and it doesn’t matter if one had an active part in the decision and the other had lived a full and rich life…it sucks either way, when it is the creative-force of a mentor leaving the world-stage.

Period.

…So, I join in with others in celebrating their work through festing their films, and get on with mine…which is what they would want me to do. But with a little, “O Captain, my captain”…and “You know how to whistle, don’t yuh Steve?” playing in my mental background.

…A background consumed in constant line runs, ad-nauseam, in “Red Dwarf”-a-thons, to get Lister’s scouser cadence permanently tattooed into my brain…in reading Whitman and Ferlinghetti…in revisiting director’s notes, and blocking…and trying to decide which of the 36 monologues I’ll pluck out and work on today.  I’ve plenty to keep me busy…which is good as the office is supplying almost nothing to that end, for freak reasons during our peak season, that I can’t for the life of me figure out.

Meanwhile, the sweltering and suffocating heat in this Kennedy Administration building has been kicking our one little wall-unit-air-conditioner’s ass…even when turned on at 5am…which has us sweating by 8:30, despite all efforts, while in the lobby The Gnome melts puddles all over her desk and floor.

…Being this pregnant makes absolutely nothing look comfortable, and it makes heat and humidity look like fucking torture. This once tiny, tiny human, has even moved on from her basketball-bump phase, and started to swell up in the arms and legs to the point of near bursting, across this past week or so. 

…Worse timing ever, one could say.  And she does.  Frequently.  Not that I fucking blame her.  I’d be the worst complainer EVER, in this situation. Which is why: Don’t ever forget Mother’s Day, like EVER.  These people lived in a nine-month-long solitary-bodily-confinement, at torturous levels, for us.  One should at least score a phone call and card for that, yeah?

…And speaking of Gnomes, (or at least this one), we’ve gotten our clever back-up for her confinement and leave-time, which will put Cecily and Gwendolen together again…only this time in office adventures.  Which I’m super stoked about because not only is she an actually competent person who I won’t have to continually train and re-train to do the job she was hired for (as I frequently do now), but it’ll make for amusing FB status updates. 

…Things like:

“Cecil and Gwen + tacos, at tea.”

…Training sessions like:

“The good ended happily, and the bad: unhappily. That is what Customer Service means. In matters of prepping importance, style, not sincerity, is the vital thing.” 

…Not to mention endless chatting opportunities like:

Gwen: I am known for the gentleness of my disposition…
Cecil: –And the extraordinary sweetness of your nature–
Gwen: …But if I hear that woman bitch one more time, so help me god, it may necessitate murder.

…or…

Cecil: …Cute UPS guy!
Gwen: Mmmm. Has nothing, but looks everything…
Cecil: …What more could you desire…?

…The cheese whiz of possibility is endless…ENDLESS I TELL YOU!

And hells yes, I will be banking on it.

~D

34, Of 55, Plus Some Dead People

29 Jul

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Have well-passed the 50% marker for lines, now riding at pg 34 of 55, including 36 monologues soupin’ ’round in my brain as we speak. 

…Add to that the independent study sessions, and a couple specific character assignments by Mdm Director, and I’m rounding out nicely. 

“Songs of Innocence and Experience” (Blake),  wasn’t a fav, but then I’ve never been ape for poetry to begin with. Did take to a few of the 46 in that collection though: The Little Black Boy, The Chimney Sweeper,  and The Divine Image from the first movement, deal with race relations, child labor, and the collective responsibility of man’s humanity to man in ways that you could see heavily influenced Dickens (whom I love.)

Earth’s Answer, The Clod & The Pebble, The Sick Rose, The Angel, and The Garden of Love, from the later movement, focus on recognizing and redeeming the sullied soul of mankind, domination of ownership, bitterness of corruption, the mistake of regret and hardening of the heart. No surprise that I preferred the second movement to the first…thanks to richer imagery. London, itself was prob’ly the most depressing (and at the time true) portrait represented…offering not a single hope towards salvation. But then, in 1794 with war and revolution, what the hell would you expect?

…Personally, I’m enjoying my re-visit at “Howard’s End” (Forster), much more, though Rita doth protest it…MUCH.

It’s obvious why…as the most doomed character is someone she can so keenly empathize with: being in more or less the same social structure, hoping that self-study and book-learning alone will save one from the doomed destiny they were born into. She reads this in prep for her very first lesson with Frank…when she is not yet able to separate her subjectivity and sentimentality from literary criticism. It’s interesting how literal she takes the words that are spoken, and how personal a jab she sees them make at her own background. It paints a very different picture, while reading it through her eyes. The level of becoming totally incensed at the injustice of the social and political situations, from both the weaker and more powerful players, feeds her to not only go on a tirade about it, but cite it several times later in her study, as a continued annoyance. Makes me wonder if she picked it up again at the end of the play, (a year-and-a-half after her studies first began), would she view it the same way or actually be able to see with the subtlety of a more educated eye, the wide-scheme commentary it was written to be?

…I’d like to think, if given a second chance, she’d learn some things from Forster too. I’d like to think, someday she’ll be wandering around a dusty book store, see the title of a beat-up copy there on the shelf, sniff haughtily, and take it down while muttering to herself about how crappy it is. Then just scan it a bit…then a bit more…until her mutterings stop and she realizes how changed the words as-printed have become to her.

…And maybe…if she’s got a five-pound note in her bag, she might end up taking it home with her, again…and when she’s finished it, seek out Frank’s address, for a quick note. Something like:

***

Dear Frank,

Against m’better judgement, I’ve given “Howard’s bleedin’ End” a go, again. Not that it’s the greatest piece of literature ever writ, but…I guess it’s not quite the “crappier than crap,” I first thought.

…Though I still say Henry Wilcox, can kiss me arse.

~Rita.

***

…Anyway, halfway through “Howard’s,” then onto “Rubyfruit Jungle”, (by Rita Mae Brown) whom Rita has selected as her namesake…which I seriously cannot wait to jump into. I’m picturing it as a cross ‘tween a lesbian coming-of-age book, mixed with some “Lolita,” and a harlequin novel. I could be wrong…but that sounds about what would turn her on. We shall see…

Meanwhile, great homework from the boss thrown in, prompting a couple essays on how the constantly repeated “I want to know” quote changes throughout the text:

* Simple truth and curiosity
* Voracious hunger
* Frustrated irritation
*Ongoing quest for more

…As well citing the ties that restrict and bind her:

* Political and economic restrictions from outset
* Lack of education
* Peer pressure and expectation
* Wifely responsibilities
* Self-worth

…Along with a new one to work on: The affect of Frank’s alcoholism on Rita, with regards to her past dealings on the subject in her own life.

All good meat to chew and digest. Anyone who says that comedy is all fluff, is an idiot. ‘Course, this is not a normal comedy. There’s very little “normal” about it to my viewing. It’s a deliciously complicated duet where the highs and lows never quite match up but get close enough to kissing, to keep you on the edge of the seat…hoping…til the end.

~D

Art According To Sylvia

15 Aug

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…Am seeking a name for m’new Lit blog.  Thought I’d start with some quotes from the brilliant and famous…and several hours later: here I still be.

…Reading.

No kidding, if you’re disenchanted with the creative process of words, in the least…you should pop on over to this page, and it’ll cure it for you.

Meantime, I’m still trying to rip myself away, and focus on the new house I’m trying to build for my new Group works.

…So I’ll go and do that then.

…But not before first leaving you with this:

“…Everything in life is writable about if you have the outgoing guts to do it, and the imagination to improvise. The worst enemy to creativity is self-doubt.” ― Sylvia Plath

So, there is that.

Now: stop making excuses, and get to work.

~D

Austenian Thoughts, On A Holiday

15 Sep

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I feel like I should work extra hard on today’s blog, on account of just breezing through it yesterday.

…I’m gonna do the weekly blog challenge, write up.  The one where you have to write in the style of a favorite author.  Only I’m gonna take it one further and do it while still narrating in the essay form.  And I want it to be a ridiculous juxtaposition. So I’m gonna pick a wildly opposite writing influence and run with it. In short: What would SWAL sound like if Jane Austen was penning it?

It would sound like this:

***

I cannot help but wish I had not lost the funds once supporting the allowance of a servant.  This morning, it was I who was left to set the tea to steep and pick the eggs.  A bothersome business, when all which you desire is to rest, uncorseted between the bed linens…stretching upon occasion at your leisure.

After breakfast, a walk about the grounds, perhaps. The day is still crisp, yet the sun is out, winking through the clouds now and then.  A piece of blue sky is surly somewhere to be found.  It would do me well, I think, to chase it.  I have only this and tomorrow for the remainder of my Holiday.  A Holiday vastly having depleted of its time. 

…Were I a Gentleman, none of such limitations would stand before me.

Of no profession, I would occupy myself between travels abroad for great lengths of time.  Not merely for the sake of “travel,” mind you, rather for the purpose of experiencing the finer opportunities afforded to one who establishes themselves in pockets of friends, old acquaintance and new.  A fortnight here or there, in country seats outside our own…a sail across seas tossed lightly in a variety of climates.

To picnic beneath an ancient tree whose seed pods float every now and then to rest on the very same blanket which I too use.

…Or a Tuscan sun, shining brightly…it’s heat soaking up into the terracotta roofing tiles, and piazza stones in the square.  English Manor gardens, manicured neatly into designs brought forth perhaps one hundred years before this.  Seedlings which once grew, as that one fallen from the picnicing tree, rising now to this magnificence…offset by fusias and lavenders and great bouquets of rhododendrons, reaching outwards in every direction.

I should like to touch a Grecian stone, entertain a Spanish siesta…walk an Irish rock and peat path, once again.

…If I were of another sex, in another time, with means to accomplish these efforts as my sole earthbound duty, I should be most exquisitely content.

However, it does seem that I am not any one of such things.

I must face, as I have done…with the absence of servants and coming end of Holiday leisure…that soon I must needs return to daily occupation. Of serving others in the stead of their serving me.  I must face the dawn’s early hour, and chill of dew’d air, to travel outward, taking reins of my own small carriage which will draw me swiftly toward the lot I must bare in life. 

…Questions, ever questions, and tasks will be demanded of me, and I shall complete them as is my duty.  But I shall not draw even the slightest rise of contentment at their accomplishments.  For my life seems often anything but the showing of an artistic effort when once completed.  In that, at no time may one gesture with affection at a day’s work-end, as one would toward even the simplest of paintings upon a wall:

“This, I have accomplished,” I may, with satisfaction, proclaim.  “This I have made.”

…A substantial object which once was a mere blank canvas, and now breathes color and light and atmos throughout your day-to-day lives. 

Should I need to wake every morning, endure ice chills in winter, fingers stiff with cold, hours of wakeful unrest, worry over color mix, or stroke placement… and ration my evening’s candlelight due to price of wax thought far less precious than a stock in canvas…I should do so willingly.  If such were my occupation for life, even a Holiday would take less precedence.

…Such is not the way of things, however.

No brush or pen stroke supports the means of which I live at present, and for that, I must acquiesce to find my living elsewhere.

…So too must you yourself, I fear.

…It was for such purpose, in which a “Holiday” was thence first bourne, I think. To give us rest and peace…and to dream.  For dreams too, are of high importance.  To aspire, in our heart and minds, toward a time and place wherein this is all but a means to something finer

Some call it Heaven. 

Some, another word or world wholly separate from this.

For me, I call it: “What can be, should we but strive hard enough to attain it.”

…An ideal which aides to sooth the burn of your contemporary circumstances, whatever they may be.

“This too shall pass,” quoth words in a promise we are all too familiar with.

…If only such application could include all, but the passing of Holidays…

~D

She’s Branding

28 Aug

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I feel like I just bought a cow and poked a searing hot branding iron at her ass.

She Writes A Little, now has it’s own dedicated Email and Facebook page with a line-up of materials coming your way should you choose to partake in them.  Mostly, I haven’t done this yet because I’ve been terrified since the last “outing,” that someone would sniff me out again.  But I think I’ve got the matter handled, secured and ready to launch out into the webosphere.

…The other “hold-back,” was what in the hell I’d do with a dedicated Email and FB page once I got them. 

This is the part where I drop heavy hints to people who might want to hire me to write things.  Don’t feel shy.  You should really give me a buzz and we can talk.  I can write serious, academic, literary, script and research article stuff too, you know.  I’d prove it by showing you my resume, but that would kinda blow my cover a little bit.  So you’ll just have to take my word for it.

…Meanwhile, as I anxiously await the many job opportunities blowing up my email inbox even now, I’d like to shift focus to the FB page a moment, if you will.

I’ve spent hours (2), tonight on my couch, deriving a cunning plan wherein scheduled materials will crop up on it, each and every day. Each day of the week will have a special post all it’s own, having nothing at all to do with the blog…(only sometimes)…and may or may not help me think of further writing ideas to expand upon, so as members you may or may not get a super special insider peek. It will be themed like this:

SWAL’s Facebook Datebook

Mon – Dames We Dig
(Dames we love and why. Inspiration in spades, these chicks got it to spare.)

Tues – Books To Read
(Book list favs from Hollywood, and bios and theatre and history. If I love it, you’ll love it…I mean, my God, we’re practically twins.)

Wed – Mmmmen We Love
(Famous fellas who get it done right, and why. With special emphasis on boys who have voices you could lick like a spoon. )

Thurs – Strange story of the day
(Weird but true news items or personal anecdotes in tiny blips. Like your own little Freak Show ticket, every week.)

Fri – Fetish Feast
(People, theatre, food, film, and lit within the fetish world. I am dedicated to searching it out…no matter what gross pop-ups thusly occur.)

Sat – Sins We Partake
(Bad-for-you or naughty favorite booze, places, delectable dishes, naughty reads, and “didja knows.”)

Sun – Saving Graces
(Quiet retreats, mental clean up, relaxing movies, books, happy place listings of “the greatest hits.”)

…At some point I’m prob’ly gonna need to come up with a better pen name, as well. Because “SWAL” prob’ly won’t sell a whole hell of a lotta books. It sorta sounds like the acronym to a disaster relief fund or hybrid disease or something. Maybe I’ll hold a contest to name me…like MGM did for Joan Crawford. And then I’ll thank the winner personally in my hypothetical book when it’s published. And maybe ship them some of this:
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…Because I’m a hell of a lot nicer than Joan Crawford ever was. All she ever gave out was sex and wire hanger welts.*

~D

* Note to self: Cross reference Crawford under Thursday through Saturday. And maybe Monday. I mean, lets be real.

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