A moment: At Caribou.

Setting: Caribou Coffee – Park Road Shopping Center – Charlotte, NC

Time:  December 18, 2102 9:15 am

Lights Up. 

(I’m sitting in Caribou coffee, paying my cell bill before they cut me off, arranging my oatmeal, coffee, and water.  I take out my journal to write when a group of children enter followed by their doting teachers.  I try not to look. In short order they begin to sing a song that I am not familiar with about cultural unity followed by a traditional Christmas carol which I can’t remember because by this time I have dissolved into tears. Across from me sits a woman and her baby who is no older than about 9 months.  She sees me.)

Woman:  Oh my God, are you okay?

Me:  I can’t … it’s just … just.  The kids you know?

(She turns to the children and quickly turns back.)

Woman:  Yeah. (pause) I can’t even watch the news.

Me: Me either.

(I cry a little more.  She squeezes what looks like pudding into the baby’s mouth.  She … I think it was a she … she has chubby rosy cheeks and is adorable.)

Me: (still slightly distraught) This is the kind of stuff they were probably doing.

Woman:(sighs) Yeah.

(We both pause.  The children finish their song.  We look at one another and we clap for them. She goes back to tending to the baby.  The two of them play and laugh.  The children have exited.  I have put my headphones back in.  Mo’ Betta Blues plays. I go back to my journaling and glance up just in time to see the woman leaving. We mime:

Woman:  Have a good day.

Me:  You too.  Happy Holidays … Have a happy …

(She’s gone. Back to my journal.)

Lights Out.

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As the curtain closes.

“…twilight is that time between day and night … limbo … I call it limbo.”      – Twilight Bey (Organizer, Gang Truce)

Tonight will be the last time I perform with the cast of Twilight: Los Angeles, 1992 and likely the last time I perform in Charlotte, NC for a long while.  In a few months I’ll be relocating to New York in preparation for graduate school at NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts. It seems so unreal  that my theatre career has brought me here when all it was initially was refuge from the emotional baggage of my divorce.  I’m beyond grateful.

As I mentally prepare to take the stage this evening I can’t help but to think about the process that we as a cast and crew went through to bring us to this night. It has been far from easy.  There have been  things said, done, and not done that has caused friction along the way.  I would like to apologize for anything that I may have said, done, or not done that has contributed to conflict, confusion, or hurt feelings.  The last thing I want any theatrical processes I’m a part of to do is leave a participant hurt and/or disillusioned. I understand that sometimes this is unavoidable. How fitting that the cast and crew of a show about human conflict, anger, and miscommunication have become a self fulfilling prophecy.

This is why I’m a theatre artist.  It’s so healing and therapeutic. It’s an opportunity for me to look at myself within characters and their situations and gain insight on life that I might not have gotten any other way.  The best part is having a gang of people as crazy as I am to do it with!

Twilight folk:  I love you all so much and wish you love and light moving forward. I hope life decides to give us another opportunity to work together. Maybe next time it’ll be in something lighter, like Noises Off or some shit, because honestly … it was fairly unrealistic to believe that we could give birth to a baby as heavy as Twilight: Los Angeles, 1992 and not have to have a few stitches ;). (Okay that was gross.)  Anyway … One more time people! Let’s make Anna Deveare Smith proud ;).

Rosie.

 

fat and insecure: egads i’ve been discovered!

A few minutes ago I was accosted on my own facebook page by a gentleman that felt he just had to respond to the following post:

photo copy

I believed the photo to be “cute” and by no means did I intend it to be a declaration of war on men who are not into big women. However this gentleman, whose name I won’t withhold because fuck it — he’s bold enough to pop up on my facebook wall talking unsolicited shit he’s good money with getting written about — did:

dumbass

I will address the rest of this post to Mr. Johnson, the kingly sage of his generation:

Mr. Johnson,

I have been alive long enough, and experienced enough to know that men like what they like and for that matter women like what they like.  And honestly, it is down right pathetic that there are still living breathing men with a shred of intelligence that believe that women stake their entire self view on what a man thinks about them.

… wait, there are those women, I just don’t happen to be one. No, Mr. Johnson the things that I say to make me feel better about myself when I find the old self esteem ship is sinking are usually related to:

1. The dopeness of my theatre artistry.

2. My phenomenal skills as a parent.

3. And the fact that I’m an honest to god “decent” human being who doesn’t see the need to maliciously belittle others to feel okay with myself.

I’ll cop to it Mr. Johnson, what you said hurt my feelings. I will not put on a brave face, and hide behind wit.  It was a throw back to play grounds and that shitty year I had in the sixth grade, but I will let your words stay right where they are because they are a reminder that I am bigger than that.

Yes Mr. Johnson, I’m  BIG.  A fat woman, if you will. I’m about two and a half of your girlfriend. I’m also BIG in mind, BIG in spirit, and BIG in aspirations (usually achieving whatever I put my mind to), so indeed there are going to be a lot of men I’m too BIG for in many more ways than just the physical. And I am quite alright with that. I bid you and all 100lbs of your girlfriend, adieu.

Rosie.

Tick. Tock.

Mortality knocked on my door today, utterly uninvited … that bitch.  I mean how rude. Here she is showing up as I am drifting happily along in the cheap hotel jacuzzi of my denial.  She hides her house warming gift in the middle of the thicket that is my pony tail. A gray hair. SONNOVABITCH.

And now some context …

We gray very slowly my family.  My mom at 64 has very few grays.  My Nana passed away at 78 still salt and pepper.  It was my expectation that my hair would stay brown (or whatever the hell color it is) until I was at least 40. But alas no. “Fuck you lady.” says The Universe.   “You gotta get old too.”

Heartless.  Just heartless.  I was able to get on with my day fairly well, although I could not escape the feeling that I was being chased by something, like … my future.  Visions of crumbly bones, sagging jowls, and Depends had me on the run.  Granted some of these fates are avoidable with dietary changes and an increase in exercise, but the water in this denial jacuzzi is so blasted warm and comfy that I don’t know if I feel like …

It’s not the dying part I’m worried about. It’s the growing old and “losing” the things I do like about myself. Like my taunt, clear skin.  Hell, I just started liking my fat ass and eventually it’s gonna get to looking like an empty trash bag.  It’s another one of those universal lessons on the impermanence of things I s’pose. “The only thing that is certain is uncertainty”, I hear Eckhart Tolle whisper in my head as I sob quietly into my youth rejuvenating tea.

It’s like 50 First Dates.  I have to keep finding ways to fall in love with myself everyday.  It’s a challenge that I’m up for most days, but others … well that’s where my jacuzzi comes in.  Join me.  The water’s nice ;).

Rosie.

So much to aspire to, so little time.

Unseen.

I wish there was a way to “unsee” everything that I’ve seen in my career as a therapist. Well maybe not everything, as there has been a large amount of good. It’s just that there’s so much that comes with knowing.  If the story of Eden is true, then this is how they must have felt. Overwhelmed with the beauty and ugliness of the world, with each bringing its own type of pain. Beauty, no matter how beautiful in the end we know is as finite as our lives. Ugliness, when in the midst of it, seems to have no end.  I’m sleepy, and perhaps in a state of exaggerated emotion after a long night, but no matter how long I’ve done this it still doesn’t seem fair that babies should die and old folks are kept alive to suffer because “we just aren’t ready to let them go.”

Rosie.