Friday, November 9, 2012

All Sorts of Stuff

Holy Moly. Being either a resident of NYC or a watcher of the news, you can probably imagine that the last couple weeks have been somewhat of a mess. Fortunately I never lost power so for me, the storm really just meant I was stranded in my neighborhood for a week and didn't have to go to work.

Other things that have happened in the last two weeks:

- I got a cold. You wouldn't think this would be a big deal, but you would be wrong. It was the biggest deal. Just ask my boyfriend who I complained to roughly 1,000 times a day until I started to feel better.

 - My review of Susanna Moore's THE LIFE OF OBJECTS was posted on the New York Daily News' Page Views blog.

 -  My poem "Beltane," was published on Escape into Life as part of their "Poetry of Fear" Halloween series (scroll down, it's at the bottom.) Kathleen Kirk is their poetry editor and she has been wonderful and super supportive.

 - I finished reading SHIFTING by Miracle Jones. Good God you guys. His books not only fucking amazing they are also free! FREE!! WHY HAVE YOU NOT READ THEM YET?? Download them here!

- Halloween happened. I ate some mini candy bars I purchased entirely for my own consumption and watched many episodes of Chopped.

- The line up for the next Derangement of the Senses was announced.

I know I always say to go to this show because it is always awesome and I am also always in it. But seriously. Go to this show. It's the two year anniversary and includes Leigh Stein, Elizabeth Crane, and Ghostwriter.

The first time Leigh and I met we bonded over our mutual love of Elizabeth Crane. She is the best. If you have not read ALL THIS HEAVENLY GLORY, read a book by Miracle Jones, then immediately read ALL THIS HEAVENLY GLORY. When you finish it you will have a strong desire to get drunk with her and share your most embarrassing secrets from middle school.

Also, Ghostwriter. He performs as a one man band and describes himself as the original punk-folk troubadour. I had no idea what this meant when I went to see him perform at the Branded Saloon in Brooklyn a few months ago, and honestly didn't think I'd be too into it. He performed in a tiny back room to maybe 20 people and I'm not exaggerating when I say it was one of the best shows I've ever seen. He is an absolute force with the energy of an entire punk band. His performance was completely compelling and unlike pretty much anything I had ever seen. If you can't make it to Derangement he will be playing another set at the Branded Saloon later that night, and if you don't take the opportunity to see him perform you will be missing out on something amazing. You can go to his website here.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

3 New Poems + Ghost DOTS!

I have three new poems up at fwriction : review! It is a wonderful journal with wonderful editors, and I am so happy to be included in it! They also asked me to pick a song for their "waffle rocking" playlist. This was a fun thing to do, and I tried to think of something that would make me look really cool, but because I am me I settled on a Don Henley song. Yes that is lame, but in my life the lamest songs also seem to have the most personal significance, so what can you do.

ALSO, tomorrow is the October installment of Derangement of the Senses. You know what that means. Halloween DOTS! Yes these exist and yes they are guaranteed to be as inedible as regular DOTS, but unlike regular DOTS they are adorable and GLOW IN THE DARK. What? A candy that glows in the dark? Impossible you say! No. Possible. Additionally, there will be a whole lineup of amazing performers including Jenny Rubin, Paula Bomer, Lenea Grace, Jessica Smith, and Shelly Yosha. Miracle Jones will read a story! Kevin Carter will host! Jason Laney will play piano! And I will be performing my S&M Lesley Gore act because for some reason I equate PVC corsets with Halloween. Come out!

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Sometimes There Are Reasons Not to Hate New York

I did not get to watch the debates last night because my friend Leigh and I went to see Fiona Apple at Terminal Five (she sounded great, looked insane, and Leigh and I both agreed that the next concert we go to will have assigned seating because we are old ladies who hate crowds), but my boyfriend took this picture of a crowd of people watching them on the street in Jackson Heights:

I think it is beautiful and it helps remind me why I live in New York despite the city driving me absolutely crazy most of the time.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

The Worst Best Month

October is my favorite month. It's the beginning of jacket weather which means it's just chilly enough to start sitting around your apartment wearing fuzzy socks and feeling extra cozy, but not so chilly that the thought of walking two blocks to the deli to get a soda makes you want to cry. October marks the season of all sorts of delicious pumpkin flavored garbage. It also contains both Halloween AND my birthday (the 11th, just in case any of you want send me awesome presents).

Here is a thing I don't like about this October in particular: I am moving. I have been in my apt. for 5 years which is about a century in New York time. I am doing my best not to let my daily panic attacks get in the way of enjoying this most wonderful of months. Here is a list of fantastic things that are getting me through:

1. The Septober issue of Megazine. Content and design wise this is just about the best journal there is. For real. I read a lot of this stuff.

2. The release of Jeanne Thornton's wonderful new novel THE DREAM OF DOCTOR BANTAM.

3. The first season of Twin Peaks which I had somehow not yet seen. I am watching it sober because otherwise I would simultaneously suffer from a brain explosion and a heart attack at some point during each episode.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

So Many Things!

There are so many things going on this week that I am forced to present them as a (very short) list:

1. The ever lovely Mira Ptacin has published an essay I wrote about my dad and his girlfriend robbing a puppy farm in Freshly Hatched. I wrote a version of this as a short story when I was in college before I realized it made no sense to fictionalize something that was actually this ridiculous.

2. I found out today that Kathleen Kirk at Escape Into Life nominated one of my poems for Best of the Net 2012. I am in excellent company and you can read my poem along with all of the other ones that were nominated here.

3. I have a show on Friday at La Poisson Rouge. This flyer tells you everything you could possibly want to know about it. Except the fact that I will be doing an act to "You Don't Own Me," which I'm pretty sure will make me the only performer in NYC who has TWO Lesley Gore acts. Did you hear that Lesley? Do you have Google Alert? Contact Me!

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Review of RISE by L. Annette Binder

I have a review of L. Annette Binder's short story collection RISE on the NY Daily News' books blog. It's a lovely collection published by the lovely Sarabande Books and you should all go out and get a copy.

Monday, September 10, 2012

In The Trenches

This story originally appeared in Playground, an online literary journal that no longer exists.
                              In the Trenches
            I know he's gone even before I roll over and feel the empty space beside me. It has been a year since we have slept the way we did when we were first married, our bodies all curled up next to and around each other so that sometimes I would wake up in the middle of the night unable to identify my own hands and feet. There's something about the chill of a half-empty bed that you can sense down to your bones.
            A year ago Jason stopped sleeping and began digging trenches.
They're not very big; nothing like the ones you see in movies that can hide a whole battalion along with a colony of rats. These are only a couple of feet deep and he always gets tired and gives up before they get too far across. I used to worry when I woke up in the night and saw him out there with his shovel, but he told me things were fine. This was just his way of letting off steam. I accepted this answer less because I believed him, and more because I wanted to. After a while you can get used to anything.
Jason and I have been married ten years. When you have made vows to stay together until one of you is dead it does not sound like that long. When you realize that is the time it has been since someone has wanted to know the name of your childhood pet, or explored the Braille of your body without already knowing everything it says, it can feel like a lifetime. It's not that I stopped loving Jason, or that he did anything wrong. After that much time together though it's hard not to eventually feel like you want something else.
I hadn't planned for it to happen. I guess most people don’t. It was summer, and I had been invited to a party hosted by one of my friends who Jason didn't like. I went alone, and spent most of the night talking to a boy I had never met. I call him a boy because he was in his twenties, and more than ten years younger than me. He had to put his hand on my knee before I could tell that he was flirting. It did not seem conceivable that he could be attracted to me.
I do not know why I gave him my number. It was probably because he asked. Over the month that we saw each other his most alluring quality was his ability to pretend that I was not married.
He lived on the first floor of a three-story apartment building, and when I came over I had to knock on his bedroom window so that he could come out and open the front door. The first time I went over the whole process felt like a parody of an affair. I did not have much time before I had to be home, and I thought we would immediately jump on each other. Instead he handed me a High Life and asked how my day was. It was strangely domestic, which was something I had assumed I was trying to escape. Now I don't know what I was after.
Jason and I had met in college. He was in a fraternity and not someone I never thought I would be attracted to. I was a film student and had fallen into the habit of sleeping with every floppy-haired boy in my department. Despite their obvious lack of real interest, I had convinced myself that if I were persistent enough I would end up with one of them. Instead I started dating Jason. I resisted calling him my boyfriend for the first year we were together. Eventually though, the force of his love overwhelmed my doubt. The others left, and he stuck around. When he asked me to marry him I figured part of being an adult was accepting what was in front of you over what might never be there.
When I finally confessed I wasn't sure if I wanted him to leave me or forgive me. I told him I still loved him, and that it would never happen again. I know at least one of these things is true.
I still think about the boy all the time, about the way he liked me to scratch his back as he fell asleep, about the ugly fake fur robe I would wear around his apartment, and how he said it made me look like a Russian model. I think about the backyard where I imagined us having coffee in the morning, knowing we never would, and about the last conversation we had before I told him we could not see each other again.
            He was lying in bed with his eyes half closed, and I had just finished getting dressed. I leaned over and kissed his forehead.
"I'll miss you," I said.
"How can you miss me? I'm right here."
"I said I will miss you, not I do miss you."
"You won't miss me? Well then I won't miss you either."
            It was the world's most depressing Abbott and Costello routine, and the disappointment that I felt let me know that I was already in over my head. When I called to tell him we were over, part of me had hoped for a fight. Part of me wanted him to tell me that he loved me and needed me to leave my husband, that we could live in his one bedroom, and spend every day fucking, eating frozen food, and drinking beer. Of course, he didn't say any of this. He told me that he understood, and that he had had a great time. He wished me the best. I hung up knowing that I would never speak to him again.
            Jason and I are past the point where it is a struggle to get through each day. We are past the point of fighting. I still have to check in with him when I am out after work, and he gets upset any time I don't respond to his calls within ten minutes. I am starting to think it will always be this way, and I guess I can't really complain. I chose this. I know that at some point we'll be fine again.
I throw off the sheets and walk over to the window. The moon is hiding behind some trees in the distance, and I can just make out Jason’s figure, shovel in hand, working away. For a minute I stand there wondering what he could be thinking about, then my eyes begin scanning the rest of the land. Over the years we have allowed most of it to become overrun by brambles and holly bushes, insects and weeds. The few acres that are left have been torn apart by Jason and although he always fills in the holes he makes, it's not hard to distinguish the areas he has dug up from the rest of the plot. Staring down it looks like a body that had been mutilated and then received grafts with the understanding that no matter how much it appears to heal it will never be quite the same.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Two Serious Ladies

I have a poem in the lovely new journal Two Serious Ladies. Take a look! It's edited by Lauren Spohrer and is completely wonderful.

Monday, August 27, 2012


This Wednesday is an encore presentation of Paper Dolls Madonnalicious show, with a few new acts thrown in. Advanced tickets can still be purchased here:

In other news we are approaching Labor Day weekend and I have only been to Coney Island once this summer. Tragedy! My two main goals for this summer were to learn how to ride a bike and to ride the Cyclone. I haven't given up on learning how to ride a bike, but the lessons stalled out after the first one ended with me getting angry with my (infinitely patient) teacher and just generally reverting to my temper tantrum throwing 10 year old self. 

I hate roller coasters, but I love Coney Island and it seems like it's only a matter of time before the Cyclone is no longer running. 

Fun fact learned from a guy on the bus: When it rains, the Cyclone can reach speeds of up to 80 mph. 

I hope it's not raining this weekend.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Alice's Adventures in Derangementland

Tomorrow I'm performing at Derangement of the Senses. This is your chance to see my Alice in Wonderland act for FREE! It will be worth it! I promise.

Other reasons to go:

1. Lisa Maria Basile
2. Stephanie Berger
3. Jon Reiss
4. The usual cast of characters that makes every Derangement show an amazing time.

Happy Ending Lounge at 7:30

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

August Shows

It's the beginning of the end of summer. Rejoice! I know everyone thinks that summer is awesome, but it is just not my thing. Yes, I get out of work at 3:00 on Fridays and get to eat either peaches or corn on the cob at pretty much every meal. When I think about summer though the first thing that comes to mind is being uncomfortable all the time and not being able to use my living room for three months because it turns into an oven.

That said, I have a bunch of fun things coming up this month.

This Friday I have a show produced by the lovely ladies of Burlesque Bikini Boot Camp. It's at La Poisson Rouge and the last show they put on was sold out so it's probably a good idea to get tickets ahead of time. Advance tickets are also $5 cheaper!

Friday, August 17th is the next installment of my favorite show ever, Derangement of the Senses.

Tuesday, August 28th Paper Dolls will be bringing back all of the acts from the Madonnalicious show we did last April. This means I'll be performing my Weird Al act for the second time ever. If you have ever wanted to know just how ridiculous I can look taking my clothes off this is the show for you. I thought the first time I did this act would also be the last, partly because there are only so many times a human being can hear the song "Like a Surgeon" played on repeat before doing physical harm to themselves or others, but I'm pretty excited to be resurrecting this.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Alice in Sparkleland

I have two shows next week!

 The first one is a Disney Princess themed burlesque show produced by my troupe, Paper Dolls. I'm going to be doing an Alice in Wonderland act. Alice isn't technically a princess, but she is technically awesome so I am very excited. All important info. is on the adorable flier above.

Then on Friday I'll be reading at Derangement of the Senses. I don't know what to say about this show that I haven't already said. It is amazing, and free, and if you haven't been already I'm not sure what's wrong with you.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Patasola's Parlor

TOMORROW! Boots will be performing her one and only classic number, complete with an accessory from the Victoria's Secret bridal collection. This show is produced by the lovely Lisa Marie Basile and I am very excited to be part of it.

When: 8:45
Where: The Belgian Room
            129 St. Marks Place

BELLY DANCING by Cassandra Rosebeetle

BURLESQUE PERFORMANCES by Lewd Alfred Douglas & Boots LaMae

Lily Ladewig
Erin Lynn
David Gibbs

How Much: There's no charge to get in, but donations are appreciated. There will also be free beer! So really it's like you're being paid to attend. 

Friday, June 15, 2012


This is an excellent interview by an excellent writer. Read the interview then read everything he has ever written.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Hello Again!

Some glorious day I will have a real website with a blog on it instead of just having a blog and that will make me feel less guilty about posting so inconsistently. Until then I will keep disappearing periodically for months at a time and resurfacing to apologize about it.

I have a show this week! You should come! All (5) of you!

What: Derangement of the Senses
When: 7:30
Where: Happy Ending Lounge
           302 Broome St.

I have performed at more than half of these shows since it started about a year ago. This is because it is always, 100%, a crazy fun time. Lately I have been reading but this Friday I'm doing burlesque. I will be performing my Chug-a-Lug act which is the first act I ever created and which for some reason I don't do that often. If you are a fan of big hair and little shorts it is not to be missed.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

New Poems

I have four poems up today at Escape Into Life. They are accompanied by some beautiful photos by Ronit Baranga, and a ridiculous "author photo" I took with my iphone while sitting at my desk at work.

In other news, I will be reading at the April installment of Derangement of the Senses on Friday, 4/20. I always have an amazing time at this show, and given the date I suspect this one will involve a little extra derangement . . .

When: 7:30
Where: Happy Ending Lounge

Thursday, April 5, 2012


So I have a couple exciting things coming up. The first is that I'm having 4 poems published at Escape Into Life. They should be up around April 18th, and I'm so grateful to their lovely poetry editor Kathleen Kirk for reaching out to me.

The second is that I will be reading in the May installment of Leigh Stein and Sasha Fletcher's The Book Report reading series. Mira Ptacin and Catherine Lacey are also reading which means it is guaranteed to be an amazing night.

When: May 1st, 7:00pm
Where: La Poisson Rouge

In other important news I painted my nails Lisa Frank purple last night and I keep getting distracted by them.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Adrienne Rich

Adrienne Rich died on Tuesday. As some of you may know, I work for the agency that represents her. I wrote a paper on her poem "Storm Warnings" in high school, and her name was one of the reasons I applied for my job. I was lucky enough to work with her on occasion, mostly on boring logistical things, and to have met her when she came to the agency a couple of years ago during a trip to New York. I escorted her back to her hotel which was a couple blocks away, and I remember having the impulse to tell everyone we passed that they were standing just inches away from a living legend.

At the end of the day I barely knew her, but in addition to being a brave and powerful voice for those who couldn't always speak for themselves, she was as lovely a person as one could imagine. In the acknowledgments of her last book she was kind enough to name everyone at our small agency including me who, as I mentioned, she had only met twice. Her contributions to poetry, and humanity, were remarkable and she will be missed.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Storm Warnings by Adrienne Rich

The glass has been falling all the afternoon,
And knowing better than the instrument
What winds are walking overhead, what zone
Of grey unrest is moving across the land,
I leave the book upon a pillowed chair
And walk from window to closed window, watching
Boughs strain against the sky

And think again, as often when the air
Moves inward toward a silent core of waiting,
How with a single purpose time has traveled
By secret currents of the undiscerned
Into this polar realm. Weather abroad
And weather in the heart alike come on
Regardless of prediction.

Between foreseeing and averting change
Lies all the mastery of elements
Which clocks and weatherglasses cannot alter.
Time in the hand is not control of time,
Nor shattered fragments of an instrument
A proof against the wind; the wind will rise,
We can only close the shutters.

I draw the curtains as the sky goes black
And set a match to candles sheathed in glass
Against the keyhole draught, the insistent whine
Of weather through the unsealed aperture.
This is our sole defense against the season;
These are the things we have learned to do
Who live in troubled regions.

          -Adrienne Rich

Friday, March 23, 2012

Comfort Books

For book club next month we're reading KING LEOPOLD'S GHOST. We've been meeting for almost two years and this is our first non-fiction selection. I was initally excited about it because it's about the Belgian occupation of the Congo and I am generally totally on board with reading horribly depressing books about awful things that happened in Africa (see: WE WISH TO INFORM YOU THAT TOMORROW WE WILL BE KILLED WITH OUR FAMILIES). I was getting along just fine for about the first hundred pages, but this week I seem to have hit a wall.

For various reasons, the last three months have been a disaster of pretty insane proportions. More and more I find that the only things I want to read are comfort books, books that are mostly very sad but that in their sadness also reaffirm my recently shaken faith in people's ability to connect to one another in times of profound awfulness.

Here is my personal reading list for when everything sucks:

Reasons to Live by Amy Hempel
The Father by Sharon Olds
A River Runs Through It by Norman McLean
Self-Help and Anagrams by Lorrie Moore
All This Heavenly Glory by Elizabeth Crane
New and Selected Poems 1974-1994 by Stephen Dunn
W.H. Auden: Selected Poems
The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway
Monkeys by Susan Minot

Monday, March 19, 2012

Yes I Know It's Gorgeous Out

Last week I told my therapist that spring makes me depressed. (Is revealing you have a therapist even personal anymore? Doesn't everyone have a therapist?) Eventually I come around to the whole beautiful weather and blossoming flowers thing and start to enjoy it as much as anyone else, but the transition from winter always makes me feel down. Apparently this isn't that weird. If you're not feeling that awesome to begin with, the weather getting warmer and the sun staying up can just make your inside world feel more at odds with the outside one.

I like fall. Maybe because I was born in October or because that sense of back to school anticipation never wore off for me. More than spring, it feels like a time of new beginnings. When you have the chance to completely reinvent yourself starting with the chunky Steve Madden loafers your dad got you at the mall. Spring is just life starting over for everything else trees, animals having babies. I can't see how any of that relates to me.

Saturday, March 17, 2012


Yesterday one of my co-workers asked me what I was doing for St. Patrick's Day. I explained that I hate St. Patrick's Day and my plan was to not leave the apartment.
Imagine my amazement when I watched 30 Rock last night and heard Liz Lemon tell her boss "I don't leave my house on St. Patrick's Day."
I have long suspected that were Liz Lemon to give into her exhibishionist impulses and develop a love for rhinestones and crying, we would officially be the same person. This was confirmed a few months ago when I was hanging out with my boyfriend and pulled a Costco cookie wrapped in a napkin out of my purse that I had taken from work as a snack.
I wonder how long it will be before I start walking around in shorteralls and eating off-brand Mexican Cheetos for lunch.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

I Am Very Important

This afternoon I spent 20 minutes exploring the seedy world of the online office supply black market because the Rolodex cards my boss uses are so old they no longer make them.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Reading this Week

I'm reading this Friday with Derangement of the Senses, a reading and performance series organized every month by Kevin Carter of Fiction Circus. As the poster indicates there will also be an abundance of cats and hallucinogenic drugs available. Kidding! But there will be alcohol as the event is in a bar and possibly some kind of electronic DJ setup as that has been involved in the past. I've read and performed burlesque with them a few times and always have a lot of fun.

Where: Happy Endings Lounge
302 Broome St.
When: 7:30

Tuesday, February 28, 2012


After a not so brief blog hiatus, I figured I would pop in and post about a poem I had published in the March edition of Thrush Poetry Journal. It's such an amazing issue and the editor Helen Vitoria couldn't be lovelier.

I also had a poem published last month in The Rag. Sadly, you will have to purchase an issue to read it, but the good news is it's only a few dollars and is well worth it.