I had some dread for the holidays, which used to be great for me but have not been the last couple of years. Happily they ended up being highly entertaining: full of champagne and pretty slippers, new age lady dates gathered around a friend’s tree, high end Chinese food, and a private New Year’s Eve party at Berlin.
But first this:
–My dog got into the cat food and his bowels exploded. Merry Christmas to me. This was not especially festive but the resulting photo is so hilarious and horrible that I felt it must be shared.
An actual shitstorm. I didn’t post it on facebook at the time because it would have caused an avalanche of well-meaning but unnecessary and contradictory advice. I will say this – canned pumpkin is my new best friend.
—-Drew and I finally had a very Festivus airing of grievances. It wasn’t totally fun but it felt right. He called me Darth Vader and said that I’m far too in touch with my dark side. I told him I found his lack of faith disturbing. He said I am not the boss of the Universe. I said we all know that’s not true. Then it gets fuzzy but I think I called his girlfriend basic and threatened to set her on fire. The usual. But it was mostly positive and I understand his motivations and behaviors better than I did before. I think it was the first time we were able to fully hear each other. I am grateful as I just want peace and communication and forgiveness at this point. If we happen to be gathered around a quiet little fire while that happens, all the better!
I kid, I kid…
I had dinner on Christmas night with Sam and Lorne Behrman and his hilarious, drinky, gorgeous, generous parents at Shun Lee Palace. They embarrassed Lorne the entire time and it was as delicious as the food. He almost crawled under the table when his mother brought up his penis size. It’s so fun to observe someone else’s parental struggles instead of your own.
Billie Joe Armstrong and his wife threw a huge New Year’s Eve party at Berlin, so against my better judgment and after a couple of years of really bad New Year’s Eves, I went. And it was awesome. They are very generous people. Turns out the secret to a good holiday party is guest list only. This is a truly terrible drunk video that I shot of Jesse, Billie Joe, and Tommy Stinson on stage, if you’re interested. I’m a webtard so I don’t know why it’s so huge.
—Kim Montenegro gave me some fabulous Ralph Lauren jeans for Christmas that are so sexy and accurately 70’s that I am now re-obsessed with Parker Posey’s Darla from “Dazed and Confused”.
Who, let’s face it, bears more than a passing personality resemblance to yours truly–
Wipe that face off your head, bitch! These are the jeans, the photo doesn’t do them justice. Also, side-note, Sam got me some equally fabulous studded platform shoes to wear with them so they make me look really tall.
So the pants sent me on a 70’s inspirational tangent, and then this video kept coming up on the visual mix while I bartended at Bowery Electric, and that was the big shove down the 70’s rabbit hole.
Everything about this video is delightful. But who was this audacious, sassy, ugly/beautiful woman in her teensy velvet dress? I fell in love and did some research and discovered the awesomeness of Ruby Starr. I don’t know how I missed her when I was a kid.
Something about feeling better about myself lately and researching a new/old rock and roll crush set me down an enthusiastic path I haven’t been on for a while. I’m excited to to hear music again. I’m less hard on myself about what I’m eating; I’m dancing happily with my dog as I brush my teeth. I guess I’ve remembered who I am, which, while flawed and infuriating and self-destructive, is never boring, usually fearless, and dare I say it, at times as audacious as Ruby Starr.
The Universe has been throwing a lot of old photos and videos at me lately, maybe because I’m ready to be reminded. Enough time has passed that I see the person in them as a separate entity. I have so much compassion for that person now. I would treat her more kindly if I had to do it over again. I was so unforgiving and had no idea at the time how beautiful and interesting and vulnerable she was. I thought myself to be flawed beyond redemption and genuinely believed that I was fooling everyone into thinking otherwise. Music was the only thing I felt sure about.
Now I’m ready to give the person I was, and the person I am, a pass and enjoy the moments a bit more. All of this serious adult machinating is great and necessary but I’m bored with mourning and apologizing and I’m ready to do some cheering. If I don’t achieve anything more noteworthy before I die, does it really matter?
I’ve been looking at all my funny, smart, creative friends and feeling so much gratitude for their presence, and I want to say this to you at the start of the year–
We were born to be so much more than we often allow ourselves. In our youth we flail around wildly, trying on personas to see what fits. Everything hurts and confuses but at least we’re willing to throw ourselves out there, probably because we’re too young to understand consequences, probably also because there’s not as much to lose. If we’re lucky those personas evolve and expand over time. Then we realize we’re aging and we get scared. No more time to play. We have been traumatized by our country’s politics, frustrated with our jobs, worried about money and health, hurt by our relationships, and afraid that we are unlovable, especially now that we don’t look as young anymore. We stare in the mirror in the cold morning light and wonder if our best years are behind us.
Fuck that, I say. Just fuck it. Tell that voice to go fuck itself. It’s not real. Life is life until it’s over.
I am ready to be audacious again. I don’t know what that looks like in practical terms, but in my heart it feels kind of like this. It’s not perfect, it’s a bit cracky and it could fall off its shoes at any minute. But it’s raw and real and its own thing. I’m sick of trying to be perfect because it halts the flow.
I want to take you all with me. There is inspiration to be had, creativity to be tapped into, people to love, fun to be enjoyed. Stop apologizing for yourself. Stop dwelling on the negative. Look out at the horizon and envision your perfect life. Make lists of things you can do to improve your circumstances. Be fearless enough to drop that dead weight. If someone doesn’t love you or make you feel good, let them go and make room for someone who does. If you feel uncomfortable putting yourself out there, channel your heroes, whoever they are. Pretend you’re in their skin and walk around feeling badass for a while. Then feel how badass you already are. You just forgot for a minute.
5 thoughts on “Audacity”
Love it! I’m so happy you are feeling good and enjoying the world and the people that surround you. Those that truly love and care about you, near and far – enjoy your light, your humor, your beauty (inside and out), your ability to truly see yourself and how you keep on keeping on – learning all the while. We need to inspire each other as we move through our lives and experiences. You do that for me (and I’m sure everyone that knows you and reads your blog feels the same). I’m so honored to call you my friend. Love you Raff! XOXOX
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Thanks, Dina! I feel exactly the same way about you. So glad we’ve remained friends all these years. ❤
Wow what a refreshing awesome read!! OmG! The boy in his mess – instant sympathy for him and you – poor poor poopy 💕💩😿
I forgot all about Ruby Starr! How could I do that to myself? The paragraph in this blog that ends with, “Then feel how badass you already are. You just forgot for a minute,” sums up the past 9 years of my life. I am done apologizing. I can tap back into my badassness. Cuz I have badass friends who are dear to me (listen up Raf, Dina, Cid, Lorne, Sam…). Thank you darling. I love a good kick in my often seen, bell bottomed ass.
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