October 27, 2010

Geek Girl-story: I Won a Dream Date With Axl Rose!

As promised, another excerpt from my very first issue of Geek Girl - Geek Patrol! - published in the Spring of 1995.  This is one of my all time favorite stories that I have written called - "I Won a Dream Date With Axl Rose!"

 
  
Wasn't that wonderful? To peruse the rest of the first issue, please visit my Flickr page:

Scar Progress - October 26, 2010


It might not look like it, but my wound is healing at a miraculous speed! I started a regimen of Mederma in the day and Vitamin E oil at night... so it should be gone in no time!

October 24, 2010

Halloween Perversion and Why it is my Favorite Holiday

Everyone knows that Halloween is my favorite holiday.  Perhaps its because growing up with just me, my Dad and my little brother, the typically jovial holidays of Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Years' were anti-climactic and even downright depressing.  It was the worst feeling in the world for a kid to get back from a miserable Christmas vacation only to hear all the other kids bragging about the expensive presents they received, when I would get something worth about $30 -- if anything at all!

Halloween was my holiday refuge.  Since everyone dressed up for Halloween, it was also the one day where I could blend in and feel comfortable.  I could let my freak flag fly, loud and proud! And I could be who ever I wanted to be on that day. 

When I pick a costume, I start thinking about it as soon as the day after Halloween, and plan (in my head) all year long.  I am usually introduced to a person or character, and become obsessed with the idea of being them for a day.  I store that person/being in my memory bank, sometime for years, and when it feels right I select that particular idea.  Once that years costume is decided upon - I get really into it - planning the most subtle details far in advance.  One year, I was Sharon Tate (dead, of course) and I went as far as to study her autopsy report to make sure the clothes, wounds, etc. were all historically accurate.  Later, as an ode to the success of this past costume and as a token of my appreciation to her spirit for guiding me that night, I made sure to thank the woman herself!


(Above: Paying my respects to Sharon Tate Polanski and her unborn child at Holy Cross Cemetery, Culver City, CA.)

I also celebrate the spirit of Halloween all year round, by wearing Halloween themed accessories like socks and earrings almost every day.


(Above: Keeping the spirit of Halloween alive each and every day!)

When I saw the film Sin City when it was released back in 2005, I really didn't care for it as a whole.  But what really stuck out to me was the character Kevin (played by Elijah Wood), and how terrifying and psychotic he looked! I knew I wanted to be him someday.  And a few years ago, this dream became a reality.



(Above: Me as Kevin from Sin City.  The secret to pulling off this costume was that everything had to be in black, white or gray like in the film - including my skin.  Also, the all-white reflection of the glasses added an extra level of creepiness.)

Last year, I felt it was officially time to be Carrie.



 (Above: Me as Carrie - Halloween 2009.  The clincher for this costume was the corsage, which I paid a florist to re-create using stills from the film.)

As Carrie, everywhere I went that night people stopped me to take pictures, ran up to me on the street and yelled, "Carrie! Carrie!" and proceeded to hug me (despite my being completely covered in a blood-like substance).  I had never felt so loved! I even won first place in a Halloween costume contest, over hundreds of other people at the club I was at! It was one of the happiest moments of my life.  Not only did I win the affection and acclaim of hundreds, I also won $100 in cash, concert tickets and a $50 gift certificate to a local sex shop! Last year is going to be hard to beat.

So, I have a character in mind for this year that I have wanted to portray ever since I was a teenager.  Laura Palmer.  The time just wasn't right until now.  I have all the items in mind necessary to pull this costume off, so last weekend it was time for me to go out and get them, or at least do some preliminary research.  But first! Its always important to celebrate the season by sporting some crazy Halloween designs on your nails for ordinary citizens to enjoy! I like to give back to the community whenever possible.

(Above: My wacky Halloween 2010 nail designs, orange with little black Franken-scars to match the one on my neck!)

Now that I was in the mood, I set out for my local costume store.  I was shocked by what I found.




Have costumes always been this slutty? Do women actually say, "I want to be a sexy Nurse/Cleopatra/Cop/Waitress/Swiss Milkmaid for Halloween this year?" Is Halloween just an excuse for us ladies to dress like total skanks? Believe me, I have no problem with scantilly clad women.  But that's not what Halloween is about! Is anything sacred? This is the day for people to get creative and take some time to gather the components for some kooky costumes! Not to just buy the pre-packaged "Lovely Lolita" or "Hospital Honey" getups! And women, I think that if you so desire to wear these kind of outfits, you should dress like that anytime of year.  Seriously! Don't be ashamed.  Stop hiding in the preppy shadows and feel free to be the freak that you are!

(Above: Has my obsession with Twin Peaks gone too far? I actually held this "Twin Peeks Ski Patrol" costume in my hands for 2-3 minutes, contemplating whether or not it had a place in my Twin Peaks memorabilia collection.  It even comes complete with a fleshlight! Err, I mean flashlight.)

After wading through the seas of sexy women's costumes, I discovered that the insanity did not stop there.


Apparently, Halloween also gives men an excuse to be total sex creeps.  "Oh, excuse this two foot long phallic projectile that has been bumping into you for the past two hours 'round the punch bowl... That's just my Fire Extinguisher®!" Or. "Hey, what's your name? Wendy? I love that name.  Oh, what's my costume all about? Well, I am a To-Do List of course.  And I'm saving the #1 spot for you!"

And if you thought this perversion was limited to adults... guess again! Pervert designers and pedo-seamstresses are in a sex-covered sweatshop somewhere right now making these outfits for your children!


(Above: Are they 3 or are they 13? Who cares, its Halloween!)

I also found several what I like to call, Confusing Costumes of Degradation.  Whether the costume be degrading to oneself or to others, the reasoning behind the selection of such a costume boggles the mind!


(Above: Bitch Wings and Anita Waxin'.  Need I say more?)

Needless to say, my initial goal of finding the pieces for my own costume was completely sidetracked by worried observation and social criticism.  How could people be doing this to my day? I mean, none of these costumes are even spooky! It ain't right.

So I would like send an S.O.S. to all of my reader(s) out there in the vacuum of cyberspace... PLEASE refrain from buying any pre-packaged sexual costumes this year - whether you be man, woman or infant! Its time to take back the night! Please take a moment right now to come up with an idea (think spooky, not sexy!), and feel the satisfaction of a day's hunting for all the pieces that you will need.  And if you do decide to go the down and dirty route with your costume, watch your back! I may send the Hottie Police out to find you.

(Above: If you bought a pre-packaged Halloween costume in the past 30 days, your name could already be listed in this Hottie Police summons book.  BEWARE!)

To see additional pictures from this excursion (and more!), check out my Flickr page:
http://www.flickr.com/secretgeeksociety/

October 18, 2010

Halloween Preview!


"She's dead... wrapped in plastic!" -Pete Martell

Look Ma, I'm famous!


I am so happy that a photo of me made the cut out of some of Suzy Mae's best portraits of the summer!

http://www.suzymae.com/home/2010/10/portraits-still-life.html

This is a link to my friend Suzy's blog, which actually inspired me to make this one! Thanks Suzy!

Analyze This: Dennis Hopper and the Film that I Never Finished

I just woke up from this:

Dennis Hopper was my mentor/benefactor in the dream.  Needless to say, he was still alive.  He was working on the distribution for his final film (final because we new he was going to die soon), and somehow we had met and he saw a film I had just completed and was blown away.  So blown away that he wanted to have my film screened in theaters before his film began, as a condition of his distribution agreement.  I had never been so excited!

(Above: my dream benefactor, Mr. Dennis Hopper.  This is what he looked like in my dream.)

I was working with him on the completion of his film while waiting for the details of the release, when out of nowhere something happened with the movie studio-industrial-complex where another person's film was to take the place of mine.  Mr. Hopper's hands were tied.  There was nothing he could do if he wanted the final film of his lifetime to be screened before he took a dirtnap.

And if that wasn't disappointing enough, I was expected to work on the completion of my rival's film, which was an awful, low budget horror movie.  So I spent the rest of the dream working on this terrible movie project.  My movie was never seen or heard of again, but I was satisfied with the knowledge that it had the support of the legendary Dennis Hopper.


???

Don't forget to send your dream analysis to me at secretgeeksociety@gmail.com, or feel free to comment below!

Geek Girl-story: The History and Evolution of the Geek

Excerpts from my very first issue of Geek Girl - Geek Patrol! - published in the Spring of 1995.




I seriously used to type my school papers on a typewriter too.  Forgot about that.

To peruse the rest of the first issue, visit my Flickr page at:
http://www.flickr.com/secretgeeksociety/

The Origin of Geek Girl

So you're probably wondering what the name of this blog is all about.  I think we've gotten to know each other a little bit better over the past couple of days... I'll grab a couple of blankets if you get the chamomile tea brewin'.  Let's sit by the fire for this.  Or no, let's get in the jacuzzi.  Great, yeah that feels nice.

OKAY.

Almost sixteen years ago, I started a zine called Geek Girl from within the confines of my teenage bedroom in Lake Bluff, Illinois.  Well, actually the very first issue was called Geek Patrol!, and soon after I changed it to Geek Girl.  I used to glue the templates together using glue sticks and rubber cement, (before Photoshop, can you imagine?) and then sneak into my high school's copy room after hours to steal copies.  I would stay there into the night and staple each issue together, then pass them out to people in the hallway the next day like the dork that I was.  My Dean, Dean Hoffmann, who is now the Principal of that high school, still has signed copies of each issue on the shelf in his office.  And I met my best friend after I found a fan letter she wrote to me on my desk in Mrs. Gillespie's U.S. History class.  That's right, I had fans.  But don't worry, I never let the super-stardom go to my head.  Unlike Madonna, Britney or Lady Gaga, I never changed.  


If you don't believe me, just read a few pages out of one of these relics and you will see how unbelievably similar my writing was back then in comparison to what you are reading right now! Its like, we're the same person or something.  Wait, what?


 
But I digress.

After graduating high school one geeky year early at the tender age of 17, I began an illustrious career at Kinko's, where I further perfected the art of copying and theft.  Issues became fancier and more intricate: color copies, transparencies, bookletting, I mean, you name it.  There were no boundaries! Just as long as I didn't get caught with my hand in the copy jar.


There was even a fan club associated with Geek Girl, called the Secret Geek Society Internacional√© (or SGSI for short).  Hence, the name of the URL for this site and even my email address! If you joined the SGSI you even received a membership card in the mail.  Whether you were still in the closet or the "out and proud" type, it was official - you were a geek. Or was I? It was so long ago.

(Above: The official Secret Geek Society Internacional√© membership card you were required to have on your person at all times, in case you were to die suddenly and not want "Wind Beneath my Wings" played at your funeral.  Note: the wet spot pictured is from the card being rubber cemented to the back page of issue #4.  In retrospect, this unsightly stain was a design flaw, but Kinko's didn't offer any special stainless gluing services at the time.) 

Its hard to believe that its been over 7 years now since the last issue came out.  I really have been slacking.  But I thought it was about time to revisit Geek Girl, now by using the most easily accessible form of communication - the internet! 

So that's it in a nutshell.  This very blog, GEEK GIRL REVISITED, will be the new home for my thoughts, documentation, informative articles, weird shit, links to my photography, and whatever else I damn well feel like putting up.  Welcome.

Also, Geek Girl-story will be the tag for an ongoing series of blogs about my roots.  There will be more nuggets to come on Geek Girl (the zine), my past film and video work, writing, personal tidbits, photography, old toenail clippings or locks of hair... Hopefully I'll even find an old grocery list for you to enjoy.  It will be a blast from the past about anything I deem worthy of sharing with you, my fellow residents of Planet Earth, Milky Way Galaxy.  And I'd like to take the time to give a shout out to my peeps in the beyond, if you're reading this!

So you aren't left out, feel free to share your stories with me at secretgeeksociety@gmail.com.  This doesn't have to be the kind of relationship where I just give, give, give! You can give too if you would like.  

If you would like to peruse the very first issue of Geek Girl - Geek Patrol! - it can be viewed here.  Just look for the photo set called "Geek Girl Vol. 1 (Geek Patrol!)."  And before you start hatin' on it, let me remind you - I was only 14 years old when I made it.  Pretty cool I think!

xo
G.G.

October 17, 2010

Respect! Michael C. East

Respect! will be an ongoing series of posts I write about someone who means something to me.  It will always be someone who has made a impact on my life or who has been a major influence of mine... or even someone who is just a downright good Joe to be around.  Anyone who has reflected beams of kindness from their heart to my head is a contender for this honor.  I think you get the picture.

"Even got the frame." -Agent Cooper

In our celebrity-obsessed culture, so many people receive recognition for doing absolutely nothing "right" or "good."  This was incredibly apparent today when I had the misfortune of watching my very first episode ever of "Jersey Shore."  I was appalled! These are the people I hear everyone talking about? On the streets and even on the news? These are the people on the cover of magazines? And they are famous? WHY?! Is anyone recognized because they have done something for the greater good? Made someone food while they were sick? Helped an old lady across the street? Saved a life? Passed a joint?

Its time to turn things around.

Today I will be recognizing the most important and special person roaming the planet today: my Dad, Mr. Michael C. East.

It remains a mystery as to what the "C." in his name actually stands for.  The story I heard was that his mom (my Grandma) wanted his middle name to be Charles and his dad (my Grandpa) wanted it to be Chauncy, so they just settled on the initial "C."  Not sure how accurate that is, but call him Chauncy and he will growl at you.  He sometimes insists that it stands for "Cash," which is meant to be funny 'cause he ain't got none.

 (Above: My Pops with the little owl he gave me before I went into surgery.  Awww.)

Recently, my Dad flew here from Chicago to be with me during my surgery and to take care of me in the days afterward.  I needed help and he was there.  He is the only person on the planet who would, for sure, with 100% certainty, have my back if I ever needed help.  Regardless of whether it be a flat tire or getting bailed out of jail (not that I ever have been!), he would be there.  And for someone who has experienced so much abandonment and loss in my life, his unconditional love means everything to me.  Other relationships have come and gone, but my Pappy has always been the one constant.  Ever since the day the meteorite landed on Mt. St. Helens (as it was erupting back in 1980) and broke into a million pieces to reveal the egg that I later hatched from, he has been by my side.


POP QUIZ!

Q: What are my two favorite things to do with my Dad?

A: Doing a crossword puzzle together while having breakfast at a diner and watching "Jeopardy!" together at a Chicago area dive bar.  A dream day would be to include both activities, with a drive around the city in between (ideally with my Dad's own historical/architectural commentary thrown in).

"You see that building there? That's the Prudential Building.  When I was a kid, that was the tallest building in Chicago." -Michael C. East 

"We know Dad." -Kids in unison

Alright, I know this is sounding cheesy by this point, but I just can't say enough good things about my Dad! He is the tops in my book.  Sure, he isn't perfect.  He isn't the best when it comes to being there emotionally.  Before he went back home a couple weeks ago, I cried and was telling him I didn't want him to leave and that I would miss him.  And he just kind of sat there silent and couldn't look at me.  I think he just has a tougher shell than me, and he keeps his feelings hidden.  So in a lot of ways we are different.  But since he is so tough on the outside, when he says something like, "You know your Pappy loves you" or "You're my number one gal sugar" its really means a lot. 


My Dad hasn't had an easy life.  I know things were tough for him growing up as the son of a WWII veteran who was an alcoholic and a pretty mean one from what I have heard.  He was born in California, but then his family came out to Illinois when Grandpa was stationed at Fort Sheridan.  Then he met my Mom and they got married... I am not sure if he ever wanted to have kids, but then I came along and my brother Mike.  He certainly didn't plan on raising us on his own after my Mom went splitsville.  Things weren't exactly easy for me either when I lived with him.  But I know he was just doing the best that he could.  During that time, he went through the deaths of two brothers and both of his parents -- silently.  He never talked about what was going on, how he was feeling, or what he was experiencing.  And I never saw him cry once.  Except that one time he got a little misty eyed when we were watching Old Yeller.  Sometimes I wonder what he would say if he could better describe his emotions.  I wish I knew that part of him better.  Hopefully I will someday.

This is why this kind of recognition is so important.  For me to be able to express how I feel about amazing individuals not only feels great, but also gives special and often times overlooked human beings the props they deserve!

So respect Michael C. East, you heard?! If you see him walking around the streets of Skokie, Illinois - shake the man's hand! Or if you see him at the end of the bar, his beer of choice is MGD.


I wouldn't be who I am without you.  Geek Girl wouldn't be here without you either! Thanks Dad.

October 15, 2010

Analyze This: How Netflix Instant Rotted my Brain and Took a Dump on my Subconscious

Okay, so remember earlier I was telling you about how I have been at home for the past four months waiting for my surgery, and how I am now recovering from said surgery? Well, let me tell you - being confined to your apartment for this long is no fun! Alright, I take it back, its fun for about 5-9 days and then the fun quickly wears off.  For the first couple of weeks I actually paid to download awful teevee shows such as "Celebrity Rehab" from Amazon.com directly to my television just because I was like, "Fuck it! I'm in excruciating pain, loopy from painkillers and I just don't even want to think about anything.  Just plop my crippled ass in front of the plasma screen and pump in the garbage.  I want to see how the other half lives!"

So after I spent roughly $60 on "Celebrity Rehab," "Sober House" and "The Real Housewives of New Jersey" I knew I had a problem.  These shows were rotting my brain, and even worse, I was paying for them! But before there was even time for an intervention I was able to quit on my own, cold turkey.  Dr. Drew would have been so proud.

But NOW what was I supposed to do? Sixteen waking hours laying on the couch immobile is a really long time! My next thought was, "I never get a chance to read! This will be great!" With no end to my time off of work in sight, I had the amazing opportunity to exercise my brain, get smarter, maybe even be able to answer a single question about literature correctly on "Jeopardy!" someday? Things were looking up.

I knew that the key to re-entering the world of reading was to start with a book that I wouldn't be able to put down.  A real attention-grabber.  One that will give me the chills, make me laugh, cry, even throw things perhaps? A piece of literature that once read, will create a momentum so great it will propel me into a far-off galaxy where people consistently read books from start to finish.  A place where eyes have the power to focus on words printed on a page, and where the information read is retained with amazing clarity.  You know, somewhere in outer space! Or the beyond...Timbuktu, Narnia... whatever you want to call it.

I then talked to my roommate, inquiring about such a work.  I asked him, "What is the last book you started that you just pounded through because it was so engrossing that you just couldn't stop?" He recommended East of Eden.  I borrowed it from him, and he was right! After the first chapter or two, once the characters started being introduced, I became more and more interested.  And when I do read, even if its only for an hour or two, I feel like I accomplished something.  Let's face it, its just not easy to read in this day and age! There are distractions everywhere.  Even when I go on vacation, I am always sure to bring a book along.  But then I plan so much stuff to do while I am away that I rarely get a moment to sit down, nevermind read.  So, I read for an hour each day for a few days, but then my brain workout came to a screeching halt.  As my back pain got worse, I was prescribed more painkillers.  As the painkillers were increased, my ability to read decreased.  I was with stupid once again.

So it was back to my Netflix Instant queue.  While normally I am an avid film watcher, for some reason the emotional investment required for me to watch the kind of movies I like was just too much to bear in the delicate state that I was in.  Instead, for the past few months I have exhausted every tolerable television series available through Netflix, since I don't have cable.  I can't even remember all of the ones I have watched, but I know there was Law and Order, Law and Order: SVU, Law and Order: Criminal Intent, Veronica Mars, Nip/Tuck, Californication and Dexter... Then I became obsessed with reality shows again and watched Miami Ink, LA Ink, Hoarders, Obsessed, Say Yes to the Dress, Pawn Stars, even Dog the Bounty Hunter (so bad)! Of course, there was a few weeks in there where I was questioning my sexuality when I watched The L Word, Transamerican Love Story, Coming Out Stories, The U.S. of Ant, Open Bar... you get the picture.  I have been no slouch either throughout this thing.  I have watched each and every episode from start to finish of every season available.  If there was ever a "Jeopardy!" category called "Television Shows Available through Netflix Instant," it would be a clean sweep for me!

You're probably wondering if there could possibly be a point to admitting all of these awful details that no educated weirdo would want ANYONE to know.  I am bearing my soul here people.  But I do want something in return for these most heinous of admissions...

ANALYZE THIS

I had two fucked up dreams, two nights in a row revolving around characters from television shows I have recently watched on Netflix Instant.  What the hell is going on here? Showtime must be going to some great lengths to place their entertainment products into my very subconscious!

Dream #1: Tuesday night


Most recently, I have been watching the Showtime series Dexter.  In case you haven't seen it, the main character Dexter Morgan is a serial killer.  It is true that I have had a thing for serial killers in the past (as a youth I had crushes on Hannibal Lecter, Max Cady and Mr. Blonde).  And while I do appreciate Michael C. Hall's execution of this role (hardy har har), I just don't fancy him to be honest.  But in the dream it was another story.  We were totally into each other and were making out all hot and heavy, and I knew he was a serial killer and didn't mind! Just another beautiful way to start a relationship? Things got weirder.

So me and Dexter were in my bed getting it on, and then he started to undo my pants and opened them up and there was some sort of dead animal, like a chipmunk or gerbil or something, attached to my underwear! Dexter made some joke about it, and pulled it off of my panties and then threw it somewhere in the room.  I was really surprised and embarrassed (as any girl might be with dead wildlife stuck to her underwear), but he put me at ease and we continued our serial killer groupie session.

But then whenever he would make his move again to touch my panties or pull my pants down, ANOTHER DEAD ANIMAL would be stuck down there, on the front of my underwear in the vicinity of my girl junk.

???

Dream #2: Wednesday night

I was traveling through the Alps with David Duchovny (currently starring in the Showtime series Californication).  Actually, the beginning of the dream seemed to take place in California, then in Europe and later, more specifically, through the Alps.  It seemed like we were both traveling separately and met through some sort of happenstance... or was it kismet perhaps? As we moved from place to place, we kept bumping into each other, then bonded and formed a beautiful friendship.  By the time we made it to the Alps, we just started traveling together.  It was great! Companionship, intellectually stimulating conversation, beautiful scenery, fresh air and... umm David Duchovny? It was a dream come true, in the dream that is.  The last part I remember before waking up was when David and I visited a glacier in Switzerland.  He was sitting indian-style on the glacier and I was laying down in his lap looking up at him and the sky... I started telling him how ever since I first saw him play F.B.I. Special Agent Denise Bryson on Twin Peaks when I was a teenager, I have been turned on by transvestites and how I don't know if I will ever be sexually satisfied unless I date a tranny, due to seeing him play a cross dressing F.B.I. agent at such an impressionable age.  He was deeply flattered by my confession, our friendship further blossomed, and he agreed to dress up for me later that night.

???


From here on out ANALYZE THIS will be a little game that we play, where I will confess absurd dreams that are a complete mystery to me and you will help me solve the puzzles locked inside my subconscious.  Do we have a deal Gumshoe?

Send your analysis to me at secretgeeksociety@gmail.com or feel free to comment below!

Chuckle of the Day (Tasteless as it May Be)...

I find the Chilean miners to be too mainstream now... I preferred them when they were a bit more underground.

October 13, 2010

Naked Ladies

I was just walking down the street and an elderly Latino woman stood there in her first floor window, looking at me.  When I passed by her she said, "I thought-a you were a moviestar!" It made me feel really special for some reason.

In reality, I have felt not so special for the past couple weeks.  Today is the thirteenth day following my surgery.  The surgeon said that it was a success, but I honestly don't feel any different than before.  My neck and back still hurt in exactly the same spots, and my right arm still kills me.  Maybe it is still early, and once I am able to go physical therapy things will get better? I hope so.

And now I have a huge Frankenstein scar across my neck, just in time for Halloween!


My friend Phil texted me last week, "How's the Colombian necktie feeling?" For a second I thought, "Good one!" because I had never heard that term before and it was pretty clever I gotta admit! Then I cried.  I don't know what I expected the scar to look like.  Its not that I thought it would be any better or worse than it ended up being.  Its just that initial shock of when you first see it in the mirror and that its really on your skin and its permanent... Its hard to explain.  Its like a war wound.  Although even more apparent.  A very visible kind of baggage to have to explain for the years to come.  As if there wasn't enough of that already!


(Above: Flash forward to my next date.  I'm the butch one.)

I did a lot of crying the first few days after the surgery.  Things got really bad too when my Dad had to go back to Chicago on October 4th.  I was upset partly because I still needed someone to help me out and partly because each time I see him I am afraid it will be the last time.  Crazy I know.  But I am really lucky he came here for the surgery, because I don't know how I would have eaten or moved or even reached for the remote for those few days without him.

This whole year of being injured and out of work for so long, then being incapacitated and helpless after surgery and with little help from others has been a strange experience.  I have always felt as though I have been cursed/blessed to have experienced things early relative to other people my age: abandonment, grief, psychological issues, now even physical illness and injury.  This year, I feel like I have definitely experienced what it must be like for older women who don't have a family of their own or anyone to help them as they become more and more a prisoner of their aging bodies.  The waiting, wondering: Will anyone stop by this week? How will I get food in the house? How will I change that lightbulb in the hallway? Will this pain ever go away? Will I have to pay someone to come and take the air conditioner out of my window? Is this what life is all about? Is it really worth it? It is definitely a humbling experience to question whether you can physically manage your basic needs on a daily basis.

I have also observed that for the most part people seem to be terrified of illness - uncomfortable even talking to or being around someone who is ill or injured (even with non-life threatening injuries like mine).  Is it because it reminds people of their own mortality? What about illness causes people to behave so... inhumanly? Its almost like people think they will catch something if they spend time around someone who's sick or injured.  A lot of people get totally weird and disappear, even stop calling.  In a way, I think illness is just another one of life's magnifying glasses... revealing truths about oneself, about what is truly important to you, about who is a real friend and who isn't.  Its yet another lesson; a blessing in disguise.  A cold, lonely blessing mostly, but one I am doing my best to embrace.

So the part of me that still has the will to live and the power to fight to regain my strength came bubbling up to the surface yesterday.  This part took me on a 23 minute walk to Porter Square to join a gym.  A ladies only gym.  A real fancy one with exercisin' machines and cardio funk classes and saunas and whirlpools... Did I mention already that its for ladies ONLY? And what is it about a ladies only gym that makes everyone get so... naked? There are totally naked ladies EVERYWHERE.  Its like an "art film" in there. "J'aime le gymnase?" I might even be turned on if it weren't for all the painkillers.  So, hopefully this new, improved, more erotic gym will help me on the road to recovery.  I have to become tough! Buff! Impervious to degeneration, oxidation and especially defenestration.  Bulletproof.