This is, in part, due to the rapid fire of unfortunate, heartbreaking, terrifying events that have plagued America recently. Like many others, my brain is in a frenzied state and is having difficulty keeping up; every day is a fight not to go down a path of self-preservation numbness to what is going on. I know that inaction is not the answer, but damn, some days it just feels so unbearably hopeless.
The other reason words have trickled out of my brain, through my ears and down to the ground is because I’m tired of being told how I’m supposed to think and feel by the online masses in times of turmoil. As a writer on the web, I do not want to pretend I’m an expert on individual emotional reaction to catastrophe; I will not tell you how you’re supposed to act right now.
But with that being said, there is one thing I want to share in hopes of providing comfort, and as a reader, please feel free to take it or leave it.
Once in awhile, when darkness falls, I will sling my trusty hedge trimmers over my shoulder and march up and down my street looking for neighbors whose brush encroaches on the sidewalk. I will snip, snip, snip as fast as I can and scurry off to the next offender.
Before you think I’m that one weird-ass neighbor every has, let me explain.
A handful of my neighbors do not regard their lawn as something that deserves care or maintenance. Fine and dandy. It’s their property to do what they see fit. However, when their overgrowth overtakes the sidewalk, it’s a slap in the face of all neighbors. When elderly people and children are forced to walk in the street, it’s downright villainous. VILLAINOUS, I SAY!
But day after day, no neighbor comes forward to speak to the offenders and the growth continues to expand.
Except for me.
I’m coming forward, mother f’ers.
I realized that in order to take care of business, there were a couple avenues I could pursue:
1.) I knock (more…)
We’ve been buddies for years now, and we have each other’s backs.
Our favorite pastime is to hang on my front porch, chewing the fat on the troubles and joys of this beautiful and sometimes hateful world.
I could write a novel on our relationship — like when he and I pooled our resources to buy him a van to sleep out of, or when he wanted to heal the stye on my eyelid with a needle and whiskey — but I don’t feel it’s appropriate or necessary to write about it in a public way. Maybe one day.
However, there is one thing I want to share:
Two days ago, my boyfriend mentioned to Tyrone that I lost my job.
Yesterday Tyrone came by my house to gift me lunch.
Tyrone, who has no home, no steady employment and who struggles to find healthy and satiating meals on a daily basis, brought me lunch because I lost my job.
I love Tyrone.
And I’m thankful for his friendship.
(Note: I used Prisma to obscure Tyrone’s face to respect (more…)
This morning social media in Austin lit up with talk about a circus-themed bar on Rainey Street. However, the talk wasn’t about how kitschy the theme is, but rather about the plethora of cruel and hateful responses the establishment has left for customers, in addition to racist comments from the owner, Brandon Cash.
Here is just a sample.
Did someone hack the bar’s social media accounts? It’s doubtful considering that the Cash has a record of questionable behavior.
How does a business person like this become successful in Austin?
When I say she’s become the center of my universe, I mean I’m obsessed with her. Like, people keep telling me I should have a baby instead and I respond with “NO WHY DON’T YOU HAVE A BABY?!” and they say “I do have a baby” and I’m like “Whatever. At least I can leave my cat alone for a day and she won’t die.”
FatFace is a remarkably low-key cat considering she spent her entire life on the street. Though she’s still skeptical of most humans, she will not bite or scratch when handled and our vet constantly praises her passivity. It’s because of FatFace’s chill demeanor that I decided it was a smart idea to drive her to 18 states of America.
Having lived on the street for all of her life, I wasn’t sure how she’d take to her digs.
Would she shred my face while I slept?
Would she hide under the bed for the rest of her existence?
Would she beg to be released back into wild world she was used to?
None of those things happened. Instead, we began developing a bond so strong that I, a self-proclaimed cat non-enthusiast, found herself utterly and completely head over heels.
(I must tell you that as I type this, my cat’s head rests less than two inches away from the keyboard, her butt is under my chin, and she’s intently watching the letters dance across the screen. Dammit…she just put her claw on the space bar and keysaaqwjefprgn kbfldblhldf (more…)
I joined NextDoor in September of 2015. At first, I was thrilled to have an additional resource to help me get more involved in my East Austin neighborhood. NextDoor was a great way for me to discover urgent matters, when the next neighborhood association meeting was, what volunteer opportunities & meet-ups were available and which neighbors needed support or assistance.
NextDoor has and continues to fulfill this role, but I quickly learned that it is also a dumping ground for people’s implicit racism. In my gentrifying neighborhood of East Austin — a historically black neighborhood — implicit racism and culture insensitivity is becoming so commonplace, that I deactivated my NextDoor account out of disgust and frustration.
This post written by a young white woman was the first red flag:
“I was walking — — – on — — – around 6pm as it was starting to get dark when a red sedan approached me, coming south. The front of the license plate read “Don’t Panic” but it was not like (more…)
For almost a year, I’ve desperately wanted to visit Meow Wolf in Santa Fe, New Mexico, and I finally had the opportunity to do so two weeks ago.
Oh Lordy it was better than I could have ever imagined.
I initially wasn’t going to write about my experience at Meow Wolf because I figured everyone and their mother had heard of it by now; however, I discovered that is indeed not the case. Many people still don’t know what this wacky, wonderful art collective is.
A little background: According to their website, Meow Wolf is a Santa Fe-based “arts production company that creates immersive, multimedia experiences that transport audiences of all ages into fantastic realms of storytelling.”
They are known for their 20,000-square-foot permanent art piece, The House of Eternal Return, which opened in March of 2016 and was partially funded by George R.R. Martin, the author of Game of Thrones.
The best way to sum up The House of Eternal Return is that there is no way to sum (more…)
So, I went to the Zappos Friends with Benefits Road Show a few weekends ago, and it was amazing. I got to watch sweet doggy after doggy get adopted out to new families—doggies like Princess!
Princess now has a forever home!
I also got to oooh and aww over adorable workout gear with dogs on them. Check out how awesome these shirts and pants are.
I’m so excited to have been a part of this event. Zappos adopted out over 150 pets by teaming up with Austin Animal Center, and they’ve covered over 16,000 adoption fees across the country! Make sure to check out their Friends with Benefits Road Show page to see where they’re headed to next.
And don’t forget: Sign up for Zappos Rewards Program where you can get free shipping, rewards, early access to sales and the option to buy sweet Frye boots like these. I’m in love.
P.S. Just a reminder that I’ll be donating $50 from this (more…)
Since Donald Trump’s inauguration, I’ve had difficulty finding words.
Words are my job, but when I sit down to my computer, all I want to write is FUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKK over and over.
In fact, I do write FUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKK over and over, but then I delete it, and I stare at an empty computer screen.
Right now nothing feels as important to me than writing about what is currently happening in America, and even then, I cannot construct a sentence that adequately conveys my anger and fear.
Every morning I have to fight the urge to not throw away my work — I’m a freelance copywriter who also has a blog and is working on a book proposal and screenplay — to become a professional activist. I’m only grounded when I remind myself that I need to make money in order to survive.
Many of my friends in writing and film have said the same thing: Making art not pertaining to what is going (more…)