Monday, December 10, 2018

flashback fashion | so much plaid


Sometimes, memory is funny and fuzzy.  I often wonder if there would be things I would forget entirely if there were not photographic evidence.  Surely, there are non-captured memories that are vivid, but somehow visual representations of the past are more textured somehow.  This photo, taken Thanksgiving circa 1979, is one such instance.  There are things it evokes about my great-grandmother's house--those stairs, the strange wood paneling of her tidy little house (her house and all its lovely vintage style is worthy of it's own post in the future.)  But that basement was the perennial Thanksgiving haunt until it moved onto an aunt & uncle's house.   There was a strange little closet under those steps where, for most of my childhood, she kept a collection of children's distractions for us, small dishes and cars and randomness she'd haul out for us at our tiny kids table. I also used to shut myself in there like a weird little introvert, and there were strange knot holes in the wood you could peer out into the rooms on either side--the party in one room, the dark laundry room.

But moreso about this picture, which is probably also one of the ones that features all my cousins in one place who would eventually scatter across the country, it's the dress I was wearing that catches my memory most. (I am also delighted by the preponderance of plaid on all of us.) While my mom had a tendency to frock both me and my sister in red velvet at X-mas, this was , I remember, a re-wear of my first day of kindergarten dress..it was a weird polyester and I don't think lasted long, but I see it and immediately I am sitting on a weird orange carpet of the classroom, staring at the alphabet above the chalkboard and making the connection between the visual representation and the song my dad had bribed me with Rolos to learn about a year before. I also remember those tights were bought later for my tiny devil Halloween costume for which I had a small plastic pitchfork. (and as with most tights in my life, probably were already running.)  While I can pretty much remember every 1st day of school outfit ever, this is one of my favorites.  It must have been my go-to, b/c it was not only first day and Thanksgiving, but also picture day.  Somewhere in my stuff there is a tiny, smiling version of me in the same dress with a pageboy bob only a couple months shorter.

I think about this time and the things that surprises me most is it pre-dates any unhappiness about my my body, and self-consciousness that would creep in a couple years later.  There are many photos where you can tell by my confidence, those thoughts hadn't even entered my mind.   By 3rd or 4th grade, I still loved clothes, but was also conscious that I was larger (not just chubbier, which I was maybe a few pounds at that point, but not drastically so)  but just larger in things like shoe size and height than my peers.  When they lined us up by height for class photos, I was always in the back with the boys.  I've talked a bit before about my child self and my love of fashion that took YEARS, maybe DECADES, to get back, but it's always weird to see myself in that brazen, un-self-conscious state before things like eating issues and magazine took a chunk out of it.   May we all be as happy with our appearance and bodies as I was when I was 5...


Sunday, December 09, 2018

writing & art bits | decemberish




*  As I mentioned in a previous post, I've embarked on a new project for the Tiny Letter subscriptions, a series called swallow.  I'll be writing these in real time, so we'll see how long it ends up being.  I'm currently alternating my writing efforts between this and  more of the poets zodiac poems, which I am about halfway finished with (they can be seen on Instagram and floating around in the little scrolls I've been tucking here and there. )

*If you're looking for some more newer work, I will also be releasing a couple of zines after the start of the new year--including the hunger palace and ordinary planet ( read some of it here & here), as well as the collab project with my sister based on the slenderman stabbings, necessary violence (some of which appears at Stirring and in the upcoming Mansion anthology.)

* the strangerie is about wrapped up, all of the pieces, with their text elements posted on Instagram.  I'll be making some new prints available in the shop soon. Eventually I am aiming for a book arts project with them, but it's a bit of a ways off.

* preparations for sex & violence continues and we'll have a cover after the new year.  I have rounded up some terribly flattering and amazing blurbage and will be soon delivering those and the final manuscript, which I'm taking one more pass through for typos, to Black Lawrence.  It's strange to think that barely a year ago, I was pulling the book together from a whole bunch of disparate parts during a really bleak month of my life just to distract myself and not go crazy. And so strange they are closer and closer to becoming a book thing all the time.

* as the smaller projects begin to coalesce into longer book projects, I am excited to see what is happening..there are currently four balls in the air as I write this, each of them a little closer to being something every month that passes.  They still need a lot of work, but the bones are definitely there. The first, currently titled, dark country (after a really good line in taurus), may be ready to start sending out by summer if all goes well..


Saturday, December 08, 2018

holiday tunes to ruin your jolly

Even before I had any reason to be melancholy around the holidays, I have always been a fan of the most melancholy of holiday songs.  For years, my mom made fun of the fact that from around ages 5-7, we owned a record (yes, it was that long ago) that featured a song about an unloved little homeless Christmas tree.  Because was too young to do it myself, I would make her keep playing said song while I stood in the middle of the room and bawled my eyes out (if this isn't a pre-curser to using art as a release, I don't know what is.) She would whip this story out often, but actually, my tastes in holiday tunes always swayed a bit a bit sad rather than happy and bright.


1. Hard Candy Christmas  (Dolly Parton/ Best Little Whorehouse in Texas Sndtrk.)



This is hands down my favorite Christmas song and second only to Jolene in my Dolly faves.  While I love the Dolly-only version too, I like the multi-singer rendition from the musical best...


2. River  (Robert Downey Jr / Ally McBeal Christmas Album)



Sure, the Joni Mitchell is a classic, but I spent the entire first few years of Christnas in my current apartment with the Ally McBeal Christmas album listening to this version. This was when RDJ was on his comeback from serious drug problems, but before Iron-Man. (swoon)


3.Christmas (Baby Please Come Home) (Mariah Carey)



While I also appreciate the original Darlene Love version, X-Mas is pretty much the only time to say you like Mariah Carey and have it be at all acceptable...


4 Blue Christmas (Elvis)



I am not usually a very big Elvis fan in general, having came of childhood in his less than stellar later years, but this always reminds me of grandmother's Christmas celebrations...


5.Baby Please Come Home (Jon Bon Jovi)



I get fun of for liking the Eagles too much, and their version is great, and sometimes in the first few bars, it's actually hard to tell this one and that one apart.  But I like the music more in this one as the song progresses than the original..


6. Last Christmas (Taylor Swift)



Perhaps my most contentious choice of a version, but while I like the song, I pretty much got over Wham in the 6th grade...


7. All I Want for Christmas is You  (Mariah Carey)



This one is always an infectious romp (see no. 3).  But, hey this is one that's actually not a little sad, except maybe in an unrequited love sort of way..


8. Have Your Self a Merry Little Christmas (Judy Garland)



There are many great versions of this one, but I think Judy nails it best.  When I was a kid, I never picked up on the sad undertones of the song..



9. Same Auld Lang Syne (Dan Fogerty)



Stick a fork in me.  I'm dead.



10.  Carol of the Bells (Trans Siberian Orchestra)



I was strapped for a 10th one to round out the list, and while othe versions of this song leave me cold at best, and are annoying at worst, I've always loved how this one particular sounds like the soundtrack to a Christmas horror movie, so it made the list...




Friday, December 07, 2018

winter wardrobe switcheroo




Along with my holiday decorating traditions, I also have, around December 1st, my winter wardrobe switchout.  Granted my winter wardrobe is not all that different from my fall one, except in that everything is usually wearable with tights or knee high socks and boots.   I switch out about 50 percent of my closet each season, and it always feels like I have a whole new wardrobe every time when I drag out the under bed bins and uncover the stuff I put away last spring.

The winter wear has a bit more flannel, some hefttier fabrics but also shorter hemlines (b/c tights), Also more jewel tones, more wintry darkish florals, and bit more tweed.  Compared to my summer and fall stuff, winter always seems a little boring, but it will do until March when I start looking toward spring. I get most excited about the sweater dresses (which actually have a separate bin in my closet) I've been dipping into since fall began, but will more wholeheartedly trot out now.  The problem is that the library tends to be overly warm these days, so I might have to wear many of them on other outings.

A lot of my favorite things about fall clothes are the same for winter, but definitely with more velvet, lace, and faux fur happening. And layers, lots more layers...


You can view some of my favorite winter looks and aquisitions over on pinterest....

Thursday, December 06, 2018

thievery and influence

 [sort of part deux of this earlier discussion...]

There's been a bit more discussion on the interwebs regarding appropriation and plagiarism and it reminded me of an exercize we once did in one of my MFA classes where we were tasked with writing parody poems of the authors we were studying that term--in this case, Sexton, Oliver, and Olds.  I don't know what may have happened to the former two, I imagine I did them but then never migrated them into any sort of saving (e-mail or jump drive pre-dropbox) they probably perished when various laptops and pc's did in the last decade.  But one survived, my Olds parody-


unsound 

The wrist holds impossible cruelties.
Dead pets nest in the curve of an ear,
while every heartbreak has a spot just
below the throat. Even at eleven,
car wrecks twisted the cage of my ribs.
Milk skinned and amber tongued,
I dreamt of my mother’s rubied ovaries,
their accurateness: me and my sister,
our mouths pink and flawless as a ballerina
in a box. Surely, we rested like a dragonfly
at the tip of her spine, or a knot in the rope
of her dreams. Even now, a grandmother
summers in my sternum, while another swims
the blood stream, the heart’s gates and locks.
My ankles still turn at the slightest imbalance.


I remember my Sexton poem was good and wished I kept it, the Oliver was uninspiring no doubt, nature epiphany poems definitely not my bag, but the Olds was not a terrible poem.  In retrospect, it seems kind of boring and straightforward when I like my poems trickier, but all of it is there--the emphasis on memory and body--on trauma--on familial history and the lyric "I".  Not really based on any one poem or collection, but all of them.  Any of them.  I'm sure there are re-curring images in Olds' work--ovaries, ballerinas in boxes, dragonflies. (though admittedly the best line about dead pets was all me) . Besides the ovaries, which would probably be too clinical a word to appear naturally in my work on the regualr,  my poems had similar things in them, so likely no one would have spotted this as an Olds' parody among so many other poems it fit in the midst of.  There is a lot of Olds in there, but there is probably also a lot of me.  I don't think it was initially part of the whole collection, and was otherwise unpublished when I realized how well it fit in the first section of the fever almanac in the final drafts. In hindsight, I totally should have included a note or mentioned it in the acks, but somehow I just didn't think to.  (I don't actually usually have a lot of notes & epigraphs as a habit.  I think girl show has a nod to the lovely Simone Muench and her Orange Girl chap I was obsessed with in 2007.  But that's probably the only time I've done it.)

Obviously, all this is a bit different than the gross co-opting experiences that aren't yours and paraphrasing people's poems, but then it also got me thinking about the materiality of the work of others and how it can influence us--consciously or unconsciously..  A friend sent me a poem asking for my opinion recently and when I replied favorably, he said something to the effect that it had come so easily, he worried he was inadvertently recycling something. (as far as we know, he was not.)  I too have sometimes come up with lines so weirdly easy, similes and metaphors so clean that I have to google them to make sure.  (and, as I mentioned in my last post, sometimes I am recalling my own forgotten poems..lol..)   Today, I was working one of the zodiac poems, which featured gardenias somehow glowing like moons and I changed it slightly since it seemed too Plath-like.

And, of course, there is honey machine, which purposely takes the material of Plath and reworks it. the strangeness of feeling another poets words in your mouth has weirded me out the couple times I've actually read those aloud. Obviously, the fact that they are Plath centos is in the title, and they are unmistakeably hers, but I do hope they are still something of me in the collaging, in the rhythm of the pieces as prose that's more me than her.  Sort of like the distortion of a picture of girl, but not the girl herself.

Wednesday, December 05, 2018

publishing, productivity and failure



At times, this year feels like a horrible tread mill, enjoyable, but always with the tinge of anxiety as I struggle to get caught up on one things and another inevitably falls behind.  I finally get one batch of things done, another thing is another fire that needs to be put out.  I've often said I have never ever been completely caught up--on e-mails, on book orders, on other tricky track writerly things, not since around 2007 when I moved into the studio and put the press & shop into high gear. But this year has been rougher than ever.  Sometimes I feel like I will never catch up, (or maybe more I do eventually catch up  but meanwhile everything else has fallen apart.) 

It started after all the stuff with my mom last holiday season, which pretty much made my November-January a wash.  When I spent the sping catching up on winter things, summer catching up on spring, and now, as we get close to the end of the year I am in a mad dash to the finish line to get all of the books that were ready to go and up for order in late summer/ early fall out the door.  I try to keep releases more on a regular schedule to allow a good pace, but in getting behind, I sometimes am over-ambitious, which only leads to more chaos.  I don't want to dissappoint my authors or our readers and sometimes feel like I inevitably do. I also feel chaotic and disorganized at times and have botched more things than usual (putting the wrong labels on boxes, stapling things upside down--mistakes I never used to make when I was less harried.)  The machine that was humming along these past years is a little faultier and less smooth.

I also still have a slate ofthe final things due out this year that I've momentarily placed on hold for most of October & November while I catch up that will be available soon to begin shipping after the new year, by which time I will have either been swallowed in an avalanche of chapbooks or will have, god willing, caught up.   The myth of "caught up" is a myth I've been chasing for years, but my processing time has steadily increased this year from about 3 weeks to more like 6, especially when it comes to new titles or really old ones I don't already have a stash available for.  I'm determined to trim it down to a 4 by New Years, 6 max on new titles  It's an embarassment of riches, to be selling so many books and getting them into hands, but I really need to move faster at getting them out the door.   I get about two hours daily of studio time, and have been able to keep up just adequately in terms of orders for author copies (which sometimes need to be done before a reading or release) and orders for things already in stock, but I am slower going on the things that demand a bit more time and preparation.

It's maddening sometimes, but I try to keep reminding myself of all the good things--the amazingness of our books and authors, the important work we are doing.  The thrill of reading through galleys during the layout process and experiencing the books I haven't looked at since acceptance and being amazed all over again.  The process of making something real and booklike.   I wouldn't want to be doing anything else.  I did lighten the load a little bit for the coming year--not drastically, but by about a quarter--taking on a few less chaps (I am in the process of sending out responses to submissions this week --a couple weeks late--folks are already querying, which is another thing filling the morass of the inbox that will be remedied soon.)

Here is hoping 2019 will be far more orderly and sane..

Tuesday, December 04, 2018

swallow


Every so often, the snake eats the spider.  The spider eats the fly.  Rumor has it, as a fetus, I swallowed my twin bit by bit. Tiny arm, tiny leg, tiny spine.  My mother noticed a tiny spot in her underwear and it was gone. Longed for red meat, bloody on the plate.  Fate a thing with feathers and teeth fed the most beautiful fat. I'm that girl now, always taking up too much space.  With my hips, with my mouth.  My rough machinations.  Every so often, I feel its tiny heart beating to the right of my own. The spider ate the fly then sat squat in the web and cleaned her fangs.  Every so often, she sighs.

I am  embarking on a new series for my Tiny Letter subscription.  it's free, it's fun, and delivered every single week. You can get in on all the action here:

Sunday, December 02, 2018

play and possibility


When I was in the 7th grade, my junior high English class was challenged in a district-wide book contest. Later I would help faciliate that very same contest when I worked at the elementary school, but that year I set out to write a horror novel, pretty much the only thing I was interested in reading.  This wasn't my first attempt, and it wouldn't my last.  But I flaked about halfway through and decided to make a children's counting book with some stencils I had. When the spiral bound version came back at the end of the semester, it was a nice little book and I gave it to my cousin. A year later, I would start writing my first poems--about kittens and flamingos and unrequited high school love.  While I planned to become many different things over the next few years--a lawyer, a journalist, an interior decoratior, a marine biologist, a teacher, there was always a certain feeling that writing would always be part of my life in some way, mostly becuase I seemed to be pretty good at it. The realities of what that entailed, in a world where very few people in my life even read books, let alone wrote them, I had no idea.    Not only that, but until I got to college, I'd never met a writer, poetry or otherwise. Being a writer..like as a career--seemed less likely than being a Broadway star or a professional gymnast. At least the paths for the careers seemed like something that could be laid out in a row and checked off is you have the natural talent.  

When it came to the visual arts, I was never a student who exhibited any sort of aptitude --and any interest would have been moot in a world where my electives were elsewhere--junior high band, highschool french for four years, newspaper & yearbook.  I did stumble into drama my senior year but only becuase of schedule conflict.  My sole art experience up til then had been many well concieved but horribly wrought attempts in grade school art classes--lopsided pottery and crooked wire sculptures--sometimes ambitious but usually disastrous.  My mother, during my formative years, was a hobby painter of ceramics.  She would buy beauttifully colored paints in tiny pots and a multitude of statues and wall pieces--poodles, clowns,  cats, victorian girls, fish to hang in the bathroom.  Money was tight and the paintables were expensive, so they'd be chosen carefully, usually as gifts, at a store called OFF THE WALL near the mall. Occasionally, she'd let me and my sister pick things we wanted her to paint--one of the last I remember recieving being a giant dolphin statue I took to college with me. My sister must have absorbed some of these tendencies and spent her entire 4 years of school and some time in college in and out of various studios and art rooms. While an art career seemed less abstract and more conceivable than writing, it still seemed like a nice hobby, a way to make extra money selling crafty things in booths, or teaching it in the school system.  But not something you devoted a "career" to.

My only moment of artistic brilliance surely happened my junior year of high school.  Our English teacher was unconventional, a  woman with brilliant red hair, a cool fashion sense, who according to rumor carried a tiny silver pistol in her tiny red clutch purse should anyone threaten her students.  This was before shootings were a daily occurrence and we liked the idea of it, the safety of it, even if it weren't true. I had come from two years of a strict 5 paragraph essay kind of teacher, so this one was like a door blown open.  Our first assignment was a collage based on The Crucible, which I  remember enjoyably and meticulously cutting images out of Glamours & Cosmopolitains on the floor of my bedroom whilst watching 90210 on my tiny black and white tv.  Our second assignment was based on The Scarlet Letter, and in lieu of a paper we were supposed to create something visual.  I decided on what would probably turn out to be my first attempt at anything like an artist book.  I was, and still am, horrible at drawing, I managed some crude flower drawings that stood in for the main characters. When I think about everything I created in high school, this ranks right up there with my American Goverment paper on UFOS (our teacher did say we could write about anything related to government.)  I still have the latter, but sadly not the former.

I did some painting of theatre sets and took a class devoted to it my final undergrad year, but other than that I may have forgotten my forays into visual arts entirely if I hadn't wound up working in an arts college,  A few years in, our then library director started an exhibit series, inviting staffers to contribute.  I was already well into my writing exploits, but I was having a hard time figuring out how to participate when most of my work was on the page. The first attmpt was to write poems on rice paper and string them through three floors of the library.  Then there were huge banners of words near the stairwell. But I wanted more, and in 2004, in the midst of my poetry MFA, I decided to take a summer collage workshop down at the Book & Paper Center.  Becuase it didn't depend on ability to render that still eludes me, I was actually pretty decent at it--the cutting and the gluing and the composition.  I was hooked, and over the next few years, I made a lot of collages and assemblages and started selling them on etsy pretty successfully, along with paper goods, accessories, etc.   In 2005, I created my first  official project incorporating both--the book of red--for a WomanMade exhibit. At the same time, dancing girl press was taking off, and I was beginning to design more covers on my own.  Suddenly, my creative output was nearly as visual as it was written, and I appreciated the way these things rubbed against each other,   Writing at the time, had always seemed so much more like work, the visual arts were all play and possibility. It was also strange that even this started to change--that the visual work began to change the written and not only did the writing get better, but easier somehow.

More mash-ups followed--the collaborative at the hotel andromeda and billet doux. I started making visual zines that incorporated found text a couple years later--things like miscellaneous and landscape | architecture.  The first non-one-off project I worked on that fully incorporated both orginal writing and visual was 2012's shipwrecks of lake michigan.  Soon, while every visual project or series did not always have a written element, most written projects incorporated visuals, and it really began to inform what I wanted to do creatively. Sometimes the links are more tenuous (while I created this series of collages whilst writing the manuscript for girl show, I never thought they fit, so when I created the spectacle series a few years later, it seemed natural that of those should grace the cover (and a broadside I created for the AofR vending machines.)

Collage is my main medium, but over the past 5 years, I've explored others painting, printmaking, book sculptures, installation, and they give the work a bot more texture and possibility.  unusual creatures, which incorporates the cabinet cards collages, also includes this library installation, which informs the visuals of the book object it will eventually, hopefully soon, become. I've also been working digitally a bit more, especially in more design-oriented things, but I still have the occasional itch for paper and the tactility of working with it. It helps to be swimming occasionally in ephemera and discarded library materials.  I also really like watercolor and ink painting as mediums---things that do not depend so much on realism. Also monotypes, a series of which I started last Christmas and which I have a ton more that need to be scanned and added to my flickr.

Saturday, December 01, 2018

begged , borrowed, and stolen



There is a thread on Twitter  today about some rampant and egregious plaigiarism/stealing of entire segements of poems.  (On the plus side, it  got me a little more familiar with the originating poet's work, which is awesome.)  Occasionally I used to see stories about poetry plaigiarism and sort of laugh..it seemed so ridiculous, especially in a world where the stakes are so very low and unlike the corporate and manufacturing world, violations of copyright/trademarks/patents wouldn't lend much to your bottom line. Weirdy, it seemed UK poets were having a particularly rotten problem with it, and I wondered if the American Lit community was more somehow immune to such nonsense..the drive to be original, to make it new, seemed to guide poets perhaps more than writers in other genres.Ego and pioneering spirit aside--a poets JOB is to be original--to make the reader see anew. Apparently, as today's Twitter activity details, I was wrong.

My own fear has always being that I might inadvertently lift something from something that I'd read.  I tend to make notes in my notebook when I read, and sometimes these are good parts of someone elses work, which I note, and sometimes they are scribbles of my own thoughts inspired by what I've just read. I've worried often that I will somehow misnote or mix up.  Or worse that if I haven't written it down,  I will have somehow absorbed it and spit it back out unknowingly later on. A few times I've had something really good and googled to make sure it wasn't something that was lingering like a ghost--one time amidst googling, I realized something new seemed familar becuase I'd already used it it in my own damn poem.  (one that never made it into a book but had been in an online journal but that I'd otherwise forgotten existed) .  I also occasionally do this with titles for poems or projects--or lines or images that seem too good and somehow familiar.

I think it was Eliot who said that thing about artists borrowing and stealing, and I'm willing to admit there is very little new under the sun, but paraphrasing existing work, words, images, and all, in other words and presenting it as your own seems particularly gross.  Years ago I stumbled on someone who had done some shadiness, though it appears to be gone now. All of it particualy shady if it  goes beyond images and metaphors or formal echos. A poetry student of a friend  was published a cento of my work in a journal, and despite other people getting all weird when they discovered it, I knew it was happening & actually thought it was cool. (It was plainly noted as a cento of my work in the subtitle.)  As someone who wrote a whole project of Plath centos, I am obviously a fan of collage and reworkings and certain types of appropriation.  I also have, from my day job, a decent knowledge of fair use and copyright law. But note that shit, man..in the poem itself or in the acknowledgements.

What makes the current example so gross is that the offender not only apparently paraphrased the exact images and words, but also claimed the trauma that bred the poem (or at the very least, acted as if it were her own trauma, which may be legit,  bred these words when they did not.)  All of which somehow seems worse and just as problematic as other types of appropriation. Not only did you plaigiarize, but you stole the experience that spawned it, which is far worse than stealing mere words or ceoncepts.

I always wonder what the win is.  That it will go undetected?  That people will praise the stolen work and you will gain adoration and attentiin?  I've always (and I include myself in this description) found poets especially ego-centric and narcisssistic (but in a good way), the high of hearing one's work priased wouldn't work if you knew it was someone else's words. Also that you are always striving to be new and orginal and if you're just spitting out something that exists, doesn't that go against the whole reason you're a poet in the first place?


notes & things | 12/1/2018



It being officially December I have finally given into holiday festivities, which today will include a little decorating (maybe the tree) hanging twinkle lights, watching really bad romcom christmas movies, baking cookies (if the choc chip dough makes it to the oven) as well as eating liberal amounts of pink peppermint ice cream.  Christmas decorating day is one little ritual holiday I observe every year, even if I don't always put up the actual tree. (I don't mind putting it up, but I get annoyed around new years when I have to take it down.)  Last weekend we did spend part of Sunday's snowyness with a 2nd Thanksgiving feast cooked by my sister and decorated the tree there.  It's hard to know, out of the hundreds of ornaments obtained and then thrown out by my mother over the years if we actually had everything, but we decided to call it done.  (At some point she dowsized the tree in recent years and tossed many out.) The actual holiday was spent with my cousins on my Dad's side and four adorable doggos.

While I was getting kind of cagey and cabin-fevery late on Sunday whe the power failed for a bit and  the snow nearly trapped us in despite my dad's removal efforts, Monday, I made it safely back to the city and nearly threw myself down on the slushy sidewalks and kissed the ground outside Union Station. I love that sort of out-in-the-countryness in the summer, even this year when I've been cagey anyway, but I can't handle it when the outside elements are hostile and I feel trapped in the house.  I also miss my apartment and my cats terribly.  Even work and the studio and my little daily routines. I'll be going back for X-Mas briefly, but definitely want to get back here and take advantage of the work holiday for some extra studio and home time.

In the library, as I mentioned a couple posts back, we are nearing the end of the semester and have finished out the bulk of programming (there is still technically the last zine night Monday, but that's really easy to set up.)  This week's snowglobe workshop and last night's murder mystery are the last of the events that are more involved and bring to end a pretty busy semester.  I realized this week that the Monday after the holiday is my 18th anniversary at Columbia, and though my job now in some ways looks very different from the job I started, it's unreal that I have been in one place for so long. I started mostly working the desk, supervising some students, and doing some odd clerical tasks.  I've cicled through being the ILL backup and back into it again for the interim.  I've done billing and patron invoices & blockages for srudents from other insititutions. I took on coordinating Reserves in 2012 and in 2014 we started A of R exhibits and programming.  I've seen multiple staffers (some, but not all)  and nearly two decades of students come and go.  I also realize that the students on campus now may very well be the children of the students I first encounterd, which seems crazy to me in my little time bubble where I am totally the same person in my early 40's as I was in my mid-20's. 

Besides having a bit more lush a poetry and art life, the press itself & studio space, and maybe a few more cats, I'd be hard pressed to find many differences between circa 2000 Kristy and 2018 Kristy, except maybe that the horrible spectre of a Bush presidency on the horizon of that fall during the recount  was nothing compared to the nonsense now.  I dd have near empty apartment that fall with only a comfy chair, some bookshelves, a small table, and a christmas tree ( though I wouldn't be able to afford presents for under til I got that very first paycheck in a few weeks.)

We're open an hour or so later this coming week for finals--so that means a longer trek home, but I'm hopeful for that extra studio hour before I head to the library that it will allow since I am deep in on author copies from the last round of releases...






style obsessions | land of a thousand coats


There is something always oddly comforting about watching Gilmore Girls.  Maybe it's a certain nostalgia that in some ways feels very 90's even though the show debuted one year shy of the decade. I caught much of the first season--it was on the WB when my Buffy vieweing was at it's peak and I still had my evenings free of work before I shifted schedules.   When it premiered that fall, he worst thing that had happened had been that the 90's had ended and Gore was looking to have lost the election.  I liked the shows snappy smart talk and female focus. Later I'd be spending my nights in the library, but I would catch occasional episodes in reruns.  When Netflix brought it back around a couple years ago, I decided to watch it, and then worked my way through the old ones over the next month or so entirely.  This fall, I got the urge to watch the again.  In part becuase I like that circa false 90's innocense, as well as it being a very fall/winter themed sort of show (not entirely, but it feels like it).

Also, one of my fave things,  outside of hating on Rory's budding affluenza and entitlement, is the CLOTHES. Lorelai has the best clothes of any tv character in recent memory, and Rory, especially in her Yale years, has her moments. But the coats--the coats--oh my....both of the gals have the best coats...which is perhaps why it always seems like Stars Hollow is in perpetual fall/winter.