Thursday, September 30, 2010

Making Space

Possibilities & The Divine Law of The Ugly Chair

Letting go makes way for something closer to your truth…which is always more beautiful. Always.

Making space signals the universe that you’re ready for ideal…or at the very least, much improved.

Making space expands your being and clarifies (and dare I say, actually minimizes) your needs.

This a good parable for why I'm giving up boy-chasing for seven weeks. Just giving myself more space to be awesome!

Danielle Laporte also co-wrote the book Style Statement, which was fun and helpful for me at that time in my life. Both with my internal quests and looking for paint colors for my new place ;-)

Wednesday, September 29, 2010


My views of the world are somewhat non-mainstream. I majored in mysticism at NYU. And I identify as a mythpunk, so gimme some of that post-modern myth making pls.

As such I see elements of sympathetic magic in putting together an improv practice group.

Over the years I've seen lots of projects start up or fall to pieces all over the four corners of fandom and geek culture. I've had successes and failures of my own, and I think I can pin down at least one important factor of making things happen:

If you want to organize a number of people into a reliable, committed working group, you have to BE organized, reliable, and committed.

Take the responsibility to invite people, communicate with them, and remind them to show up for practice. Be consistent with delivering information. Act like the responsible person you want to see in others, even if you're not the one in charge, because it will inspire others to do likewise.

Welcome to sympathetic magic, which can sometimes be paraphrased as "Fake it until you make it." Eventually, it won't have to be faked, and the world will respond in kind.

But you have to emulate and become the qualities you want to see reflected around you, waiting for someone else to take the initiative will not work. "Flake it until you make it," is not an adequate alternative.

On a related note I met a Voodou priestess last weekend. After giving a lovely talk on her religion and the practices of her House, she offered readings. I asked about my place in the improv scene, and she read that I could bring the scene creativity, fire, inspiration, and ... virtue? She was just as confused at that as I was.

I don't consider celibacy or singledom to be a virtue unto itself. But getting things done and holding up your end of agreements is most virtuous in my mind. Plenty of people already do that in improv, and I hope to live up to their examples and add one more.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Looking for Group?

It looks like September is for shifting all kinds of perspectives.

I hung around on the improv comedy scene as audience-only for many months before I got up the nerve to take classes. At that point I had a group of friends on the indie-scene (ie, improv teams/performers/shows not part of a particular teaching theater) who convinced me that improv was fun rather than terrifying in the first place.

Early on I figured that indie-improv peeps are super busy with their indie projects, and there would be a big experience gap between them and myself, so I would find people at the Theater where I took classes to play at improv with. Maybe someday in the far off future I'd get to play with my indie friends.

Things haven't really turned out as expected. I'm about to start Level 4 at the Theater (Adept Level Improv?) but still having trouble finding things to do outside of class. Leveling up doesn't mean much if you don't have an adventuring party.

The Theater doesn't have a lot of room for n00b-shows (which totally makes sense if they want to sell tickets, basic theater ecology ;-}), so I don't really get to play there except for improv-jams and my class performances. I've almost been involved in a couple of Theater projects, but last minute rule-changes and cancellations left me out of the loop. Not many in-class contacts have led to new practice groups.

On the other hand I've had a few invitations to improvise, mostly at practice groups and one-time shows, from indie-scene friends. It's not a huge number of invites but any score vs. zero is a solid win for the independants. Despite my being absent from indie events for a long time because I was hanging around the Theater, so I'm surprised to even be invited.

The Theater is fun to hang out in and has great shows and classes, but maybe it's time to get back to the indie scene. That's where the work/play seems to be for me. I miss my indie friends and feel bad for having being away.

I am also trying to start my own practice group, because "If you want something done, do it yourself." I have a mix of people from different sides of the improv scene interested and I hope I can get it to work out :-)

Monday, September 27, 2010

Do you have my size in black?

For years I have skirted the fringes of alt-cultures. I rarely had the focus or energy to commit to any one in particular. It took me years to finally pick up the big black boots I adore. Two years ago I made an effort to buy clothes in colors other than black, but it turned out to be a hassle.

This month I stopped worrying about balancing a wardrobe that is at least 75% dark colors. I'm still being super lazy about makeup, if I wear any at all. Clothing takes a bit less time to deal with in the morning with a narrower color palette.

One problem is that black clothing blends together in a dresser drawer, and its easy to forget what you've got left before laundry day. And one black t-shirt looks much like another, in the dresser or on the body. So I will play with the subtle differences between garments and my jewelry skillz.

And I rediscovered Pandora. My Sisters of Mercy station is great so far. Its a wonderful service if you're too shy to ask club DJs what it is they're playing, although I don't know how far Pandora will deviate from the mainstream. There are also online radio stations for good goth music, although my wonky home internet connection makes them less fun.

It definitely helps that I'm experimenting with a celibate lifestyle, so the phrase "dress to impress" is suspended for now. Focusing on appearance is superficial as transformations go, but still a helpful step towards rediscovering old lifestyles and interests. Although I'm still not sure where the divide is between "Person that likes wearing black" and "Goth," I plan to investigate. Maybe I'm a subculture of one, and that is OK with me.

Big comfy boots are clearly the source of my power.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Seven Weeks - End of Week Two

What I have learned thus far:

-I live almost entirely within my own head.

-Reprogramming your brain and being mindful of thoughts and actions is HARD and EXHAUSTING.

-Not whoring myself out to anyone who shows up to a given event saves a lot of energy.

All of last week I was exhausted. Although there were a lot of external circumstances that could have caused it as well, like my "moon time" and the NYC change of seasons making me sleepy. And the testing of fire alarms at work.

It was really nice to go straight home after work after spending my day as a library zombie, skip my usual weekly comedy shows, and not feel like I was missing an important opportunity to go out and meet people. I also saved my energy for an improv class show on Friday that I rocked out on.

Now I have more presence of mind to plan my weeks ahead of time, making space to rest for the plans and projects I really want to be awake for. Instead of chasing half-formed notions and daydreams at all hours of the night.

Back in my nicely decluttered home, I felt no loss at sitting back at my neat desk and watching Britcoms until I felt better, or just more ready for bed.

This weekend there was a lot of family problems that left me even more exhausted, so I have not been up for much blogging. Or anything, really. But once again being home to recuperate was not a big deal.

So far a life of celibacy means having less interest or desire in being out late with people. Or out at all. That means catching up on me time. And sleep, glorious sleep!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

So "Man Hater" isn't necessarily accurate...

Feminism and Romance Go Hand In Hand.

Contrary to popular opinion, feminism and romance are not incompatible and feminism may actually improve the quality of heterosexual relationships, according to Laurie Rudman and Julie Phelan, from Rutgers University in the US. Their study* also shows that unflattering feminist stereotypes, that tend to stigmatize feminists as unattractive and sexually unappealing, are unsupported.

Not quite what I go for on this blog, but good to know if you like that sort of thing ;-)

Friday, September 17, 2010

Seven Weeks of Celibacy

Vow of Celibacy! Yes!

For the last few weeks I've poked at my brain. Most parts of my life and outlook don't add up anymore. I have so many fun projects to work on that aren't getting done. Something unrecognized is making me mopey and unfocused and insecure.

It culminated during a nighttime girl-talk session at one of the comedian bars last weekend. We were talking about chasing boys, and the earnest scab-picking session that always goes along with these conversations.

And I was not having fun.

I looked back over the last few months, and years, and then as far back as I could remember. For one period of my life it was fun having a boyfriend, but I have never actually enjoyed chasing boys.

To my shock, I realized that most of my thoughts and activities for the last few months have been geared towards chasing, attracting, or ingratiating myself to prospective mates. Every time I made myself up to look cute, or stayed out late with friends, or went to new events, it was often in the hopes of getting matched or picked up. This never actually happened, and I was frequently dissatisfied about my life.

After years of being (as one friend described me) fiercely independent I'm not sure where this switch to codependency happened in light of not having an actual person to be codependent with. And these new behaviors coincided with a loss of focus, increasing problems with sleep and time management, and several personal projects falling apart or not getting started. Especially this blog, because the thought of being a Neo-Spinster became less alluring than... what? Being picked up in a bar by a slimy alcoholic? WTF!

What happens if I start living singly on purpose, again? In NLP terms I'm not giving anything up or making sacrifices, but re-framing my outlook on life. Like I said, boy-chasing has never been a pleasurable activity for me, so why not replace it with things that will be fun?

From now until Samhain (aka Halloween), I will be celibate. Roughly seven weeks. Like a mental/emotional detox to try and get back to the way I was when I started this blog, but without the Zoloft. And I hope to figure out why this happened in the first place so I can prevent it from derailing my life again ;-)

As always, Your Mileage May Vary.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Sass Is Back, All Right!

The NYC summer is drifting away! Temperatures have dipped back below 80 degrees! The think-y cells in my head work again!

Just in time for my standard allergy season. Pow. Whups. Think-y brain juice halted by an equal and opposite force of goo from my sinuses.

So I'm here, and typing, and ready to sass again. But I'm going to work on some of these posts for a few more days as the medicines wear off. Just to make sure I'm not proofreading under the influence :-)

Luv Sassy!