Friday, August 31, 2012

A Few More Drops... the well that is my dried up faith in humanity. I really love people sometimes.

I've been on a bit of a blog-glut recently.  There are any number of well written, clearly thought out, pointed, funny, serious, sarcastic bloggers and bloggesses (and non-cis-gender/non-gender-conforming bloggifiers) who fill the interwebz with joy, and good respectful no-nonsense commentary/advise. The sarcasm, the I-will-not-take-your-bullshit, and the ooh-look-a-pretty-nerd-thing also warm the cockles of my heart. (WTF are heart cockles, anyway? What do they look like? I heard this all the time growing up in The South [TM] and always pictured a heart with conch-like chambers.  For some reason, the chambers also laughed; this is either precious or really really creepy, depending on how I feel when I remember it.)

While I am still deeply mourning the loss of the independent blog Forever in Hell by Personal Failure, I have found a goodly number of other lovely blogs full of lovely things.  If I get my shit together, at least some of these will grace my blogroll before too long.  I've spent most of the last 2 days reading and loving Captain Awkward's advice, and *finally* looking up Feministe.  These and other blogs/general websites are an amazing resource for guidance through difficult, awkward, and/or scary social situations. These blogs and other feminist readings, a very socially progressive women's college, and some truly amazing RL people have helped with the Brill Gets A Clue About Life And Social Extrication project.

(Tangential-Sequitor: So many times especially in the extremely wallflowery days of my life I have somehow ended up in a situation where I did not like what was happening/I was embarrassed/I felt scared/confused/threatened/offended by the in-/actions of another but had NO CLUE how to extricate myself beyond fake-fainting or sudden constant screaming [not that these are *always* bad ideas].  Society - and especially the very conservative, very Christian, very Southern culture of my child-hood - does not program us womanly things very well for disagreement or assertion of the self. The attitude 'Smile, nod, shut up, and don't you dare disagree' runs rampant through my home-region, though not always through my home itself.  I've had [more than] a few awkward and embarrassing and retrospectively creep-tastic things happen because I had no script for how to deal with them. [I will ramble more at length about this later.])

This topic got waaay off of where I was going, but it means well.  Summary: I have an angry frustration with Western/American/Southern culture.  These bloggy links are good. They have helpfulness and scripts for lifeshit. Oh, and sarcasm.  Sarcasm is a beautiful, sharply faceted jewel in the marshy morass of human communication.


In somewhat less profound and much less engaging news, for the first time ever I am in an online class (graduate-level Art History and Culture) and as such am required to keep an art blog.  This is something that I have intended to set up since... um... 2007? Well, five years isn't the worst length of procrastination I've visited upon myself. Better late than never, let there be ArtBlog, complete with images and discussions not remotely related to anything anyone outside of the class is remotely interested in, links of artistic merit, and articulate (god, I hope so, but this doesn't bode well) discussions of interesting articles.

Keeping two blogs isn't much harder than keeping one, especially when the required one is the one that involves all the thinking and the analysis and the synthesis and the reading-and-writing-coherently-about-art-theory-and/or-incredibly-esoteric-elements-of-art-theory-and-culture-on-which-I-may-in-20-years-have-enough-tenure-to-teach-a-class. Maybe. ... and the second consists primarily of my constant inner monologues.

The run-on sentence of frustration asked me to make a new paragraph, because it was tired, and the migraine ravaging the upper half of my torso says I should just wait until I can see straight enough to type without without a 1:1 typo:real word ratio.
It has a valid point.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Aaaand I am now single.
More on this later, as I am still a bit sore on it and also really need to go avail myself of the wonders of modern plumbing.
In the "Good Life Shit" column, though, I quit the job that sucked away my happiness, made me hate people, and left me covered in a thick layer of sweat, vaporized mayo, grease, and bleach.  I am now working at a local cafe.  It is good.

Friday, May 25, 2012

New post here

...because the last one was bumming me out.  I got my grades for last term, and I got a C -a C!- in my 6 credit Ceramics class. And I don't really care.  My give-a-fuck is way low.
I'm enjoying my newer job quite a bit, though I am having time management issues with it. Finally-finally-finally got done on time with the closing yesterday...and when I went to get my check today I was told that I forgot to turn off a light and wipe one counter. Grr.. *headdesk*
I want comics.  I want to write. I want my AC to cool the whole house, not just my bedroom.
I am held hostage by ennui.
(and this was supposed to NOT be depressing? dafuq?)

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Holy shit. 3 years. I wonder if anyone even reads this any more.  I kind of hope not.
Since the last post, in no particular order:
-I met (2009) and eventually started dating (2011) a lovely lady, my Wolf
-I graduated undergrad with a Bachelor's of Fine Arts with a dual concentration in ceramics and drawing
-I had my senior show and used the proceeds to buy my first car, George
-Wolf proposed, I accepted
-I was accepted into the MFA program at a large state school in I*** Pennsylvania, and moved up there/here with my cat.
-I found 2 jobs in food service, and can now hate the world with more specific reasons

I had intended to delete this blog, but figure that probably no-one is reading it and I can rant my heart out.  If anyone is, wow, you are patient.

Rant Part the First:
The lease on my current apartment is up on July 31. I am paying waaay too much and even though I love the place I will not be renewing the lease. A friend from school and her fiance are in the same boat, so we're looking for a place together. The problem is that their landlord overlords need to know if they are staying in the complex by June, so I have to find a place that opens up in August May. For 3 people, a cat, and a dog. Everybody says, 'call in July' or 'pay for 2 months of not living in a place in order to reserve it' or 'students/pets?!?! hahahahaha!' (more politely, but that's the message) or 'sure, just pay 2200/person/semester, and 500/person/mo in the summer. Oh, and all the utilities."

Rant Part the Second:
I am probably dropping out of the MFA program and transferring into the MA program. The reasons for this are threefold:
Firstly, I can't afford to take out $25K a year in loans to cover rent, out-of-state tuition, and the shit-ton of fees associated with college. I am at this moment $50K in debt, getting an ART DEGREE. This is ridiculous, and I am not going to double that.  I can still teach with an MA, tho jobs will be a little slimmer on the ground.
Secondly, I am sick and fucking tired of the art school attitude, the "concept, concept, concept!" super-cerebral bullshit art-vs-craft "what are your underlying motivations for this color/shape/texture?" attitude that pursues an explanation to its death, over analyzes and finds Deep Meaning in things that aren't there. I understand the importance of concept and reasoning and research, but I am sick and fucking tired of people trying to give me work deep socio-political meaning and a message of 'environmentalist activism.' I quite frankly Do. Not. Give. Two. Shits. about making a political statement with my art.  I think that if I am here for 2 more years I will crash and burn, and I don't want to work myself out AND be $100K in debt.
Thirdly, I miss my parents and my Lady Wolf.  This long-distance relationship stuff is for the birds, and neither of us appears to be a star at communication. >.<  I miss being able to see all of the friends and family I have spread across SC, GA, FL, and NC.  I do NOT miss the inbred, homophobic, small-minded outlook of the general area, or the summers (ick), but the things I miss outweigh the social and environmental benefits of not living in SC.
I have found a church here.  It's a Unitarian Universalist congregation, open and affirming, full of wonderful, loving people, and I cherish every chance I get to go to church here.  They are, I think, what I will miss most of I*** proper.

Rand Part the Third:
I hate people. An individual can be good, but people in general suck ass.  I have been working as a dishwasher at an event location since August, and I just got a job as a barista last month. (spellcheck says barista should be barium.  I wonder what it is like to be barium.)  My observations from these employments: Dishwashing does not attract MENSA candidates, and people put all sorts of weird shit in cups.  I'm talking cake, custards, napkins, cheesecake, gum, candy bars, candy wrappers, tampons (not used, thankfully), parts of their dinner, and so much more. And they don't tip for shit.
I hate people.

Rant Part the Fourth:
My grandfather has been in poor health for many, many years.  I have known this. He is tired, very tired, and in constant pain that is unreachable by medication.  He currently has 1/4 of one kidney left, and they just discovered another mass on this fragment of an organ. He'll know by Friday if it is scar tissue or another recurrence of the cancer. If it is the latter, as it has been a few times now, he probably won't last out the summer.  This is the grandfather who does not and probably never will know that I am gay.  I love him very much, but cannot share my life with him or my grandmama because of deep cultural and religious differences.  This -the separation and the illness- hurts, so, so much.

Rant Part the Fifth:
I am getting kicked out of my drawing studio in favor of the MAs coming in this summer, and if/when I switch down to an MA myself then I will lose my private ceramics studio.

Rant Part the Sixth:
My parents switched off the SC phone plan that we had all had since I was 16.  This is not a bad thing; I bought my own phone plan in September, and they had let me know that the phone would be going off months in advance.  However, when dad called today to let me know that they had switched over the plan, he didn't tell me what their new numbers would be, and so I can't call him or mum OR my brother for this info, and they had the home phone disconnected years ago.  Bugger.

Rant Part the Seventh:
I have to send in my mid-year reapplication for food stamps by next Tuesday.  I knew this was coming, but I thought they wanted May info. Nope, they want April info, when I didn't work for a week and hadn't found a second job. In April I made juuuuust a few hours short of the minimum hourly requirements for EBT.  I will probably lose my food stamps for a few months while I am reapplying.  I have met/will meet the requirements this month, but the red tape chokes and the wheels of bureaucracy turn very slowly.

Miscellaneous Rants, Part the Eighth:
I can't afford my migraine meds or my acid reflux meds. My fridge broke down over last weekend and I sent all my dairy with a friend until it fixed itself, so when I had heartburn for 4 days straight last week I didn't even have milk to soothe the burn.  My house is overwhelmingly messy, I did laundry 10 days ago and it is still in the bag on my bed.  I can't gather my thoughts enough to do housework.  My Lady Wolf started a job and is now either at work or asleep and I haven't talked with her except for "I am sleeping off a headache" in almost a week. She doesn't know I'm dropping out of the MFA program yet.  My insomnia is back, and when I DO sleep either I have stress-mares or the cat wakes me up or I wake up on my own every hour.

Rant Part The Ninth:
The parking garage is closed for repairs for at least two weeks, so I am having to find parking in not-exactly-legitimate places.  Today I came out of the art building after cleaning up my drawing studio and found another $15 parking ticket.

Fuck you, life. Just... fuck you.
I want to go to the beach and not come back.

Monday, December 28, 2009

Fun Day

I went to Riverbanks Zoo today with The Flower to meet her boyfriend and a friend of his whom we were both meeting. She wanted my opinion on him (he's definitely awesome), and it was a good midway location with interesting stuff to do. I hadn't been to the zoo since I was about 10 or maybe 12 at the latest, so there were a lot of changes. It also seemed a bit smaller to me even though we went all over the main Zoo, but that might have been because we didn't go to the Botanical Gardens. I've been before, but it was too late by the time we would have gone for us to get back to our car before the park closed.
I want a Black Footed Cat!!!! Holy cow, there should not BE that much concentrated CUTE in an animal! The adults are only 2 lbs, and they have the big kitten eyes. They look a lot like small kittens, and were very playful today. The last time I was there the Zoo had just bred some of them, and were very excited because they're an endangered/rare species. There were 4 adults today, romping all over the small unit. Overload of adorable.
Lots of birds, lots of fun, good company, low crowds this time of year.
Reunion of the Reading Club tomorrow, and I'm looking forward to it. Monkey and I spoke with Le Batard and conveyed our displeasure with him and his actions, though I'm not sure how much of it he HEARD. He will probably be there tomorrow, so I hope we can exist in the same space without interacting much. We shall see; if I remember I shall report it.

Au Revoir
~Brilliance and Light

Thursday, December 24, 2009

She only sees what she wants to see

I find it somewhere between vaguely amusing and hair-rippingly infuriating the things my grandmother sees and says about my appearance.
For years she has nagged me -SO kindly, of course, you almost can't say anything because she's so well-meaning...- about my glasses. My black, rectangle-frame glasses, that look just like the ones before. "They hide your pretty eyes," she says, "You look like you're hiding behind them." She thinks I should get other glasses or contacts. No. They make it easier to communicate without words, they fit well enough, they match everything in my fairly utilitarian wardrobe, and provide me with adequate peripheral vision. And contacts dry my eyes out like mad.
My grandmother dislikes the way I have from time to time kept my hair in the past, short butch cuts that I used at school to swing around the gender-variant scale. I have had to pass these off as the result of a "$10 haircut," not a stylist who did just what I wanted, in order to keep myself in the closet to that half of the family. I finally have long hair again, and she commented this past weekend that I looked "So much better with your hair long, dear."

One of the main benefits of long hair is that it provides a veil, a shield to hide behind when I need it.

I want to scream.

In other scream-related news, Le Batard called me. I was not ready for this. I don't remember if I mentioned this here, but the last interaction we had before we left did not go well. Basically, he was an utterly insensitive, probably a manipulative jerk, did not pay attention to specific things I spent a long time explaining, and attempted to go against my wishes on a few counts. We had not spoken from before Sept. until yesterday, and I'm still not sure how to talk to him. I'm shaking and angry, even angrier after talking to my Dad last night pointed out a few more points where he'd been a jerk and I'd been too gracious to title it so at the time. Monkey and I are going to talk to him on Boxing Day, and I'm not sure how this will turn out. I don't know exactly how I want it to turn out. I wish he'd grow up and stop using people.

Wish us luck bashing his head in.
(metaphorically, of course.)

I'm also running at odds with my gender again, but not much I can do about that right now. 4 days of forced femininity have really warped my cycle of fluctuating gender ID & presentation. Whenever I've done this "forcing" before, it's rather fucked up my system, hormonally, but that's probably also due to the stress inherent in such exercises. I hope that a few days to settle down and let myself be 'male' or 'female' at will will reset me.


Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Brains are leaking out of my heeeeeeeeeaaaaaaad

I started to comment, but it was a little long for that.

Visit was good, overall. Our car is WAY too small to have that many large people in it at one time, but we handled it well, I think. We got to meet my uncle's fiancee, and she's a sweetheart. They're goofy; it's cute. I wasn't able to fit any of my work into the car, which rather bummed me out. Buster's portfolio is much smaller than most of my work, so he brought that. There's a decent chance that I'll be able to go with Da when he goes back in a month, and then I can take some work to show, as well as the Christmas present for the grands.

On a less overall upward note, last night I looked more into grad schools that I will be applying to next year. This is scary. As my wonderful friend The Flower texted me when she was sending off applications, "Don't apply to the scary grad schools!" There was more, which I believe waxed eloquent about the benefits of living in the Alaskan wilderness versus applying to grad school, but I've deleted to text since, unfortunately.

Of the ones I had looked into thus far, University of Oregon and University of Mass at Dartmouth looked the best, program-wise. I did some more picking around their sites and looked at cost of living in those respective places. People are crazy. I am not paying 600/mo. for a 1Bd/1Ba. It is something "up with which I will not put!" (A phrase from my Mum, which I believe she got from her Grandmama. Not sure.) Ugh. I need more than the two schools on my list, so I kept looking and found this and this. I've looked more at the former than the latter, but they both look promising. One of my main sticking points is that I am poor, and am not exactly going into a field that's going to make me rich anytime soon, unless I get unbelievably lucky, so I don't want to exit grad school with more debt than necessary. If I can I can get a teaching Fellowship, Assistantship, or whatever the school calls it, I would be very very happy.

Louisiana looks like a very good program, but I really don't want to stay in the South, much less enter more deeply. Edinboro has an added benefit of not being very close to any large cities, unlike U. Mass. (WAY too close to D.C. for my comfort). I want to visit these places, but I don't know if I'll be able to. I think 5 or 6 colleges on my list would be a good number. Some part of my doesn't want to go to grad school, but mostly that part is the over-analytical part that worries about money.

The rural mountain roads in NW GA are very pretty this time of year, if you are ever able to drive them. Of course, they're gorgeous pretty much any time of year.

I can't figure out how to interpret the thoughts in my head, so bye for now.