Monday, November 12, 2012

An Exercise in Divergence

Hello, my cobwebby corner of the internet. I'm going to do something today that I have not done yet on this blog. I'm just going to write some stuff. I know, what?! But really, I think the format that I've set up here is part of why this space goes neglected so often. I only come here once I have a pre-formed topic that I've deemed important enough to write on; it daunts me out of writing smaller, less focused posts for fear that the "quality" of the blog would decrease. Which is totally counterintuitive because nothing is worse than NOTHING. Is it the worst thing in the world if my posts are less heavily focused on Aesthetisexuality and related concepts? No, and even so, I think any rambling I produce could be related back to these concepts, because I tend to filter my experience through these lenses involuntarily. Okay, justification over.

No, wait; part of the reason for this shift is that I semi-officially left my LiveJournal of ten years a few months ago. It was weighing on me in a way that became unproductive. And yet, without that kind of outlet, things have been getting extra cluttered in my brain. And what with starting at CalArts and trying to engage in new kinds of writing, I really do need a regular, personal, semi-public system of textual expression. What do you call that? Oh yeah, a blog. One of these.

I think another factor in my neglect is Tenebrae quitting Sanctuary. I wrote the majority of these posts sitting up in the DJ booth for hours at a time; it was my BDSM study hall. Maybe I should start frequenting other fetish clubs with a laptop, to stake out a spot and write. Coffee shops are overrated. I'm only like 30% joking. This could be a step in accruing my cult following.


The Halloween season has come and gone, and it was an unusual one. I feel unable to move on from it, mostly because I didn't take enough pictures to devote a Facebook album to it. My gods, I wish I was joking about that. Without making some kind of public display or analysis of the events, I can't move on with my life. So I guess this is that. It was an unusual Halloween because throughout October, I was performing with the Sideshow Sirens. I was extremely hesitant to agree to the gigs because of how important it is to me to have free time for Halloweeny stuff in October. So, I only performed about a third of the gigs and did not work on Halloween night. Most people in the troupe were working four days a week all month. By the end, everyone was losing it to a certain extent. But everyone really earned their breakdowns, if that makes sense.

I don't want to go into detail about my experience with the show, but it did force me to think a lot about my relationship to performance in general, what does and does not work for me, what is and isn't fulfilling. In that way, it was a very useful experience and I don't regret it; on the other hand, there is no way I would do a run like this again. I want bigger and better things for the troupe, but I do not want them for myself; this could be a fork in the road.

Something I noticed about the dread and anxiety that I feel around performing is that it is not really related to "stage fright." That is to say, I am no more nervous in the moment before going on stage than I was earlier that day. The problem isn't about being on display in front of gawking humans. The obligations, interactions, heightened alertness, attempts at extroversion, the certain kind of on-ness that surrounds theatrical involvement just absolutely drains me. To a certain extent I think it must drain everyone, even the people who crave that lifestyle and thrive on it; but I think I don't get enough back from it to justify it emotionally.

Anyway, that's enough on that for now. Because of the flurry of sideshow stuff, I didn't really plan a Halloween costume. (See, even though I only performed about a third of the gigs, the involvement took up so much space emotionally that I felt like it consumed October.) I mostly-successfully rationalized myself out of being depressed over my lack of costume. Before Hex on Halloween night I did start to get depressed, but decided to say fuck it and carve a pumpkin while Tenebrae sewed his epic Lost Boys jacket. I am no expert with pumpkin carving (though I am an expert pumpkin pie baker), so in an effort to do something uncomplicated I carved the Bauhaus face-logo. It was pretty great. Then, just hours before the event, we realized that not only do I have fangs and a ton of club-chic attire, but I also have a blonde wig. Thus, I was Pam from True Blood. It was probably the most successful literal-last-minute costume I've ever done.

It was a strange Halloween. And with this post, I can put it to rest, because that's how my brain works. And with that, I'll be going to class soon. I've been writing this in the computer lab at school; it's no fetish club, but it'll do.


  1. How damn lucky I was to see this update in the sidescroll on fb, because how hungry I am for all meditations on performance, and on social obligations related to performance. And then there's the bit about being Pam.

  2. "Maybe I should start frequenting other fetish clubs with a laptop, to stake out a spot and write. Coffee shops are overrated. I'm only like 30% joking."

    I actually miss working on projects at coffee houses. I keep meaning to go back to that place on Wilshire... but, it's not the same...

    I totally get the idea of not wanting to include writing that doesn't fit with what you've established already, and how that can make you* produce nothing, but look! Now you've just expanded this weB-LOG beyond its established theme! This means you'll be extracting interesting stuff from out of your brain, and displaying it here like bugs pinned to foam-core with far more regularity! Yay!

    Also wondering if you had a chance to appear anywhere as "normal girl" this year.

    *by "you" I mean "me."