Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Young Until I Die

Yesterday marks what would have been Karen's 30th birthday. I had concerns that the day would come with a wave of emotions, but it was as lovely as she was. Well, the weather was shit, but my ladies made it sunny in my heart.

Beth, Jessica, Gina, and I indulged in pizza for lunch. Surprisingly, we took longer than our standard Friday beer lunches, but it was nice to just joke around mid-day with my girlies on a gloomy Monday.

After work, Gina drove like a bat out of hell through the traffic and rain chauffeuring Beth and I to my new favorite shady tattoo parlour on the east side of town, Shades of Grey. The owner, Arnoldo is a super sweet adorable man who tattoos nipples onto breast cancer patients who've had reconstructive surgery. I got a heart-shaped freckle tattoo on my arm to commemorate Karen's 30th, which was my early 30th birthday gift from Beth! Beth also documented the event:

Arnoldo explaining the shading of freckles!

It's the tiniest tattoo I have, yet I was still nervous 

My 'root canal' face while waiting

Okay, so it's bigger than a freckle, but smaller than a dime.

Afterwards we got some beers, cheese, and sausage at Easy Tiger and then shared a bottle of champagne at my house. Thank you ladies, for making it such a lovely day! Now, just to keep it together for my own 30th birthday.


Weekend Review

It was another beautiful weekend here in Austin!

Friday night was Catherine's big 'zero' birthday. We had a nice gathering at her house with delicious foods and good company. I was exhausted from a busy week at the offices, and was home and in bed before midnight. I'm loving my early Friday nights!

Saturday morning Jessica and I made a Blue Hanger run. As usual, I made out pretty well. I'm still paranoid from my bedbug fiasco last October, so I've left my BH loot outside until I can take the clothes to the laundromat and heat the hell out of them in a dryer. I'm sure I'm overreacting, but exterminating Satan's minions was fodder enough to never allow used clothes into my home without precaution. Jessica discovered a beautiful kelly green, mustard yellow, and black paisley-ish/peacock fabric that I fell in love with and bought. I can't wait to re-cover some furniture with it.

After our hectic morning of shopping we had lunch at Kome. Mmmmm, it was really delicious and they have pretty good lunch specials. Yay, for Yoshi sushi so close to my house.

JJ and I spent about 4 hours in his apartment "recording studio" working on my birthday song. Like I've said before, Julia and I rewrote the words to Robyn's Call Your Girlfriend and I want to make my own 30th birthday music video ala Kris Jenner:


I'm at a loss for words on how to describe our result. JJ did an amazing job using recording tricks and auto-tuning, yet I still sound absolutely terrible. I think to describe my singing voice as a piglet screaming while being eaten by an alligator who is roaring because he is slowly being pushed through a rusty meat grinder might be the closest to the shrill, piercing, and strangely guttural noises that came out of my mouth. It was a pretty humbling experience and I learned that I may be the worst singer alive. I'm still torn on whether or not I'm going to complete this project, but I had so much fun recording with JJ on Saturday that even if I stop here it was worth it.

I'm a terrible singer, y'all

Saturday night was the much anticipated Beerland benefit show in Esme's honor and for Ray's birthday. The Royal Butchers, Golden Boys, Crack Pipes and Ted Leo played. I actually didn't even know who Ted Leo was, but hell... I loved the other guys so it worked out for me. Here's a photo from the night of Beth, Bridget, and me looking flash-faced and milky pale.

Beth, LD, Bridget

Sunday morning Alison, Aaron, Emily J., Jacob, Julia, and Sam came over and we had a little brunch in honor of Karen's birthday. It was really nice to just have everybody over and to munch on the strangest combinations of brunch foods: Taco Bell bean burritos, pickled green beans, bloody Mary's, cheap champagne, veggie sausages, and cake; all of her favorites. I was still feeling some pain from my Saturday night's fun and spent the rest of day napping and watching basketball.

By far, the most amazing thing that happened this weekend was my whimsical purchase of a co-axial cable. Since receiving my new, amazing, huge, super awesome TV from JJ, I've been wondering what would happen if I screwed it into the cable outlet on the wall. Guess what?! I have cable, and lots and lots of it. I'm a little overwhelmed since I haven't wanted or even had a real TV for a handful of years. I'm pretty damn excited about all the Lifetime movies and basketball I'm going to be watching in my PJs!

Friday, January 27, 2012

Working For the Weekend

Intersted in what I'm going to do this weekend?


  • Blue Hanger with Jessica
  • Laundry
  • Clean my filthy house
  • Karen's honorary 30th birthday brunch
  • Tattoo for Karen's birthday 
  • Film my 30th birthday video
  • Re-con at Bernadette's for my birthday party and make a final prep to-do list
  • STAYTEN and JULIA!
  • Complain every day until I get my yarmulkes
  • Buy bags and bags of rhinestones
  • Grocery shopping
    • Tea
    • Margarine
    • OJ
    • Thin black insoles
    • Lunch baggies
    • False eyelashes
    • Cat cereal
  • Garden
  • Find the perfect gifts for my February girls
  • Write thank you letter to Aunt Priss
  • Submit taxes! woooooo hoooooo for 2 inches of medical bills.
  • Determine if 50 balloons are too many to hold without flying away
  • Make Valentines 

Born To Die

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Thursday Tidbits

Another round of tidbits, y'all!


  • Last night I spend 2 hours on the phone with my mum. She had speculations that perhaps my 30th birthday was a 'coming out' party. The very idea sounded hilarious to me, but now I see all the signs: Bar Mitzvah, becoming a man, lesbian bar, no boyfriend....... 
  • My friend, Katie, is performing in a puppet show version of one of my favorite short stories of all times: Charlotte Perkins Gilman's The Yellow Wallpaper. She will be making shadow puppets with her hands and I'm super excited about watching tonight. She is a sign language interpreter, so her manual dexterity has to lend itself to some interesting shadows. Go Katie, go!!! 
  • The yarmulkes I've ordered for my birthday (which I will rhinestone for my top 30 ladies to wear) are shipping from Israel! I was wondering why they hadn't been delivered yet and checked the tracking. Thank goodness I'm such a planner and ordered them last month.
  • I already got my first birthday card! It came in the mail yesterday, with check included to help fund my big party. Thank you so much, Aunt Priss!
  • Speaking of Aunt Priss makes me think about what 'family' means. Richard (my step-dad) and Aunt Priss (Pam, our family friend) have volunteered to be in my life and truly bring amazing insight, support, and love to my world. I think sometimes when people chose to love you so much it feels better than the love that comes from those people that have to love you. I guess this is the same reason that my best friends mean so much to me!
  • It feels like Friday in my brain and I'm ready for the weekend!

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Tuesday Tidbits

  • I was a big, 'ole brat last Thursday, yet still met up with Alison, JJ, Aaron, Natalie, and Emily J. for some post work beers. Even the good company couldn't un-pout me and I went home afterwards and threw a 2 hour tantrum. As ridiculous as it was, I think a tantrum was all I really needed to push through some of my sadness. Afterwards, I started thinking of ways to celebrate what would have been Karen's 30th birthday. Our displaced League City gang is going to have a nice little brunch, champagne toast, and I'm going to get a sweet little heart tattoo on my finger in her honor.
  • Friday night turned into an impromptu best friend bonding fest. JJ and I started out the night drinking beers on my roof and spent some time with Julia, Stayten, and more beers before rushing off to a last minute massage appointment. Boy, oh boy, did we need massages!

That's me with Austin in the background

JJ at the peak

  • Look at these awesome Swamp Thing earrings I bought from the corner mart for $6.99

Swamp Bling

  • Saturday morning's date with Julian was unbelievably boring! Not only did he not know what a mimosa was, we actually spent most of the date just looking at the pictures on my cell phone. How can someone soooo pretty be such a bore! Gina and Karen saved the rest of my Saturday with a booze cruise bike ride and I rounded out my night with Pam and Wells for some delicious savory nibbles at their house followed by tons of laughs at Iron Gate.
  • Sunday morning I bought an amazing pair of lady's cowboy boots at the pawn shop! I couldn't believe they were my size and absolutely gorgeous; black, hand-made and only $40!



  • 9 hours of ladies brunch with Andre, Beth, Bridget, and Gina on Sunday. We started at Contingo, nearly killed an entire bottle of vodka at Yellow Jacket, and then wrapped up the night crashing the boys' football party at Eric's house. I don't even have to say it, but I love my girls!


Contigo's smoked salmon with dilled goat cheese spread,
fried capers, and a pickled egg!

Bridget and mwah acting bored at Yellow Jacket

The sun has set, but we're still brunching!
LD, Andre, Gina, Bridget, and Beth

Andre and Gina showing us their ballet moves

Footballers!
Bridget, Andre, Beth, LD, Gina

  • All the fun I had this weekend didn't go unpunished. I'm feeling terrible and had to get another round of steroid shots today. It's pretty frustrating and I'm super sore, but most importantly I'm just fed up with being a sicky baby. In November I got 12 shots in my chest, hip, shoulder and wrist and I kept humming Bon Jovi. This time around, I threw my doctor for a curve ball and was humming, Shots, Shots, Shot, Shot, Shots! You've got to make light of the stuff you can't change, I guess. so I'm going to keep planning my medical malady soundtrack. 


Thursday, January 19, 2012

The Secret

Over the Christmas break, my mum told me that I needed to make a list of all the qualities I want in a soulmate so the universe will know what to create for me. She said I should include even the smallest detail like, "I don't want him to ever wear yellow socks." This was exactly like all the other metaphysical advice my mum has given me throughout my life, so I was a little shocked to learn from Sally and Audra this past Sunday that it was, in fact, Oprah's advice from some self-help guru she's hawking, The Secret. So, being that I love lists so much, I quickly adhered to the universe's guidelines and made my list of 100(ish) things I'd like to find in a partner.

  1. Likes me
  2. While playing ping-pong, he'd rather hear the sound of the ball bouncing on the rackets/table from back and forth play, than beat me.
  3. Not afraid of PDA
  4. Doesn't hit me
  5. Doesn't raise his voice to me
  6. Isn't rude to strangers
  7. Even-tempered
  8. Open and self-reflective with emotions
  9. When I'm scared, he doesn't call me a baby or think I'm being melodramatic
 10. Likes animals
 11. Kind-hearted
 12. Wants to adventure with me
 13. Cooks
 14. Owns a home
 15. Car and bike
 16. Reads
 17. Someone I LOVE to kiss
 18. Enjoys junk shops
 19. Music lover
 20. Will dance
 21. The type of guy that would be willing to wear a bow-tie and could enjoy it
 22. Not allergic to nuts or cats
 23. Some sort of furry softness
 24. Okay with illness
 25. Doesn't think my food/drink issues are issues
 26. Likes to talk with me
 27. Compatible body temperatures
 28. Likes trying new things just as much as the tried and true
 29. Snuggler
 30. Likes watching movies
 31. Generous
 32. Caring towards me and knows how to comfort me
 33. Not opposed to owning pigeons, chickens, goats, or cats
 34. Goes out with the boys and let's me go out with my girlZ
 35. Loves his family
 36. Likes my family
 37. Enjoys group events
 38. Tells me, "I love you"
 39. Compatible sense of humor
 40. Stable job
 41. Willing and able to a commit
 42. My partner in crime
 43. We travel well together
 44. Let's me cry
 45. Has a healthy sexual appetite and likes morning sex
 46. Supportive of my goals
 47. Let's me pee outdoors
 48. Is fun
 49. Doesn't have a specialized diet with restrictions i.e. vegan, gluten-free, vegetarian
 50. Likes the outdoors and the sun
 51. Can play guitar with Richard
 52. Wants me to win just a little but more than he wants to beat me
 53. Jokes around and pokes fun with me
 54. I want him to give me something that I never even knew I was missing (thanks Robyn)
 55. Is passionate about something
 56. Good with time management and not over committed
 57. Thinks I'm sexy and/or gorgeous
 58. Is proud of, and not jealous of me
 59. Good gift giver
 60. Someone who feels grateful
 61. Not driven by fame
 62. Smart
 63. Attractive
 64. Decent dresser or willing to "clean up nice"
 65. Affectionate
 66. Tells me that I look nice whenever he knows that I've tried
 67. Loves me
 68. Treats me to nice things on special occasions
 69. Garden friendly
 70. Likes my friends
 71. Would be willing to Halloween in a couples' costume
 72. Handy man and helps around the house/does chores
 73. Creative
 74. Doesn't think I'm fat
 75. Someone who wants a smart, funny, and self-aware woman
 76. Has a good memory
 77. Trusting
 78. Trustworthy
 79. Organized
 80. Not opposed to marriage
 81. Has a talent
 82. Legible handwriting
 83. Won't scold me in public
 84. Enjoys some aspect of sports
 85. Is neutral about having kids
 86. Provides moral support for me
 87. Likes going out and staying in just about the same (50/50)
 88. Remembers the first time he met/saw me
 89. Appreciates me
 90. Surprises me
 91. Someone I can be proud of
 92. Confident
 93. Has a nice laugh
 94. Not a miserable person
 95. Sharing
 96. Non-smoker(ish)
 97. Kisses me goodbye every morning
 98. Doesn't take advantage of peoples' weaknesses
 99. Understands the difference between venting and asking for advice
100. Okay with the fact that I play hooky at work sometimes
101. Doesn't want to stick and ice pic in my eye socket when I say hello to stray animals (not a joke, this is how my ex felt)


Perhaps the list thing is working? The boys at the bus stops have been hitting on me hardcore lately and I even have a date! (Very cute social worker with Snoop Dogg-esque, old-school, long afro that I'm dying to braid and meets my #23 furry softness requirement.)

Here's a pic of the real deal as posted on my bathroom cabinets:

Monday, January 16, 2012

Sweet Esme

It was a weekend for Esme:

Friday night I worked the door for a music extravaganza benefitting Esme's family. I was so overjoyed by the hundreds of familiar faces that showed up throughout the night. We easily made close to $5,000 at the door alone, which brings tears of joy to my eyes. I can only imagine the funds that have been raised in Esme's honor and it warms my heart. There was a silent auction and I bought a tattoo gift certificate donated by my wonder tattoo artist, Billy Baca, and I can't wait to get my sweet little kitty cat pinup that will now have some sentimental purpose associated with it:




The memorial service was held yesterday at Fiesta Gardens with easily 300 people in attendance, and words cannot express how lovely the ceremony was. We truly lost an amazing, vivacious woman, but I get goosebumps at the thought of how much good will be perpetuated in her honor. Wes wrote and played a beautiful song, and it still amazes me when I think of the fact that he was actually able to play the entire way through without breaking down. Girls Rock Camp members (past and current) played in the world's largest all female band (40+ members) called Esme Berrera Fan Club. There wasn't a dry eye in the audience at their version of the Rolling Stones' She's a Rainbow.



She's a Rainbow was played at Karen's funeral as well, and I don't think that song will every play without a hole tearing in my heart. Beautiful girls, beautiful, whole-hearted girls.... I do, however, feel much more comfortable with turning 30. I can't help feeling like I have to pass this milestone with grace for two outstanding women that didn't get to this year. Karen and Esme would both have been 30 in 2012. I'll be celebrating for the 3 of us for sure.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Tidbits for Friday!

-It's wedding date time again! Beth and Matt will be getting married in March and so starts the search for a wedding date. After flying solo with Audra at Pam's wedding, I'm thinking that I would prefer going alone or with another guest/friend who is flying solo as well. If I do procure a date, I'd like him to wear a bow tie, dance with me all night long, and make out in a coat closet. Over nine months ago I told my Jersey boy, 3Gs, that he had to be my date, but apparently he has a GF now and they will be flying in together for the celebration. Hmmm, maybe I'll just ask Greg Cartwright instead:



-Idiosyncrasy of the day:
I get so upset at the idea of snails being crushed. If I step on something that goes crunch under my feet, my heart is wrenched and I fear looking down to see a smashed snail shell. One time this happened and I was distraught until I finally looked and realized it was a Cheeto and not a slimy friend. Last week there was a gloriously big, shiny snail in Julia's driveway and I was terrified that she would run him over, so she parked in the street (that's what friends are for, right?!). This morning, once again, I had the snail crushing fear, but the victim of my boot was just an acorn. Enough is enough and I've officially decided that I needed to get some help; perhaps hypnotherapy? Well, I think I can hypnotize myself, sort of.... I made up this story that I am learning to believe as a way to ease my crushed snail anxiety! Here goes:
Sequins are only made whenever a snail is stepped on. People love sequins! They're so shiny and beautiful! In fact, many snails dream of dying and becoming sequins in their future lives. 
Oh, sequins and snails..... I smile and my fear is gone.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Video Games

I can't get these darn songs/videos outta my head right now:




While planning my upcoming birthday party, I'm reminded of my last bday bash nearly 3 years ago. I had a pretty, pink 27th Quinceneara include choreographed dance to this song:



and of course...

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Tuesday Tidbits

-I just bought yarmulkes for my 30th birthday Bar Mitzvah! If anybody is interested in bedazzling them with me, don't be shy. I'm very excited, but forgot to get one for myself. I guess this just means I have more time to explore custom options, like this one for example on Etsy:



-Last night Julia and I played 8th grade girls and rewrote the lyrics to Robyn's Call Your Girlfriend for a Robyn/Kris Jenner tribute birthday video I'm going to make for my 30th. It's was surprisingly harder than I thought considering we rewrite songs all the time to be about cats. My favorite part was when Julia told me my thinking face was pretty. Maybe that was why I was so popular in college

-Sometime between Halloween and New Year's I went from being skinny enough for my thighs to stop touching to my current state: having muffin tops in my fatty jeans. Damn you, holiday weight! I've got to get back ASAP.

-I am pretty serious about wanting to start a Selena cover band, but mainly because I want to dress up like Selena. She was so pretty, y'all


-I got my tax information today and I'm so excited to start my taxes. Eeeeep, I love taxes!

Monday, January 9, 2012

Es-mazed

Today my heart feels as dreary as the weather outside. It's nasty here in Austin and I want to curl up under a warm blanket with soft things to cuddle. It's dreary in my heart too....


This morning Esme's funeral began in El Paso, TX where her family resides and she will be laid to rest tomorrow. She will certainly be missed and the thought of her murder brings tears to my heart and disgust to my stomach. I don't know if we will ever resolve within ourselves how this could have happened, but we lost an exceptional lady at the hands of a monster.

Tonight many of her friends will be attending a meeting with the Austin Police Department to demand questions and request that they organize a date to address our concerns independently of the Heritage Neighborhood Association. If you can attend tonight, please come. We will be passing out buttons with the above graphic to show our support in numbers.

It has been so strengthening to see how the Austin music community and Esme's friends have joined together. There have been so many memorials written in her honor, not just by friends, but outside entities like NME magazine, Kathleen Hanna, The Dallas Observer, The Houston Press, Ted Leo, The L magazine, BUST magazine, Spinner, Waterloo Records, and countless others.

I'm overwhelmed by the organization of so many thoughtful events taking place in her name with donations going to help her family with expenses and establishing a scholarship in her honor with Girls Rockcamp. I encourage you to attend all you are able to. I anticipate being at majority of them. Here is a Facebook event related list:
Benefit for Esme at the Scoot Inn Thursday, January 12th
For Esme, With Love at 1808 Friday, January 13th
Self Defense Class at Monolith Saturday, January 14th
Art Raffle near Taurus Dog Training Saturday, January 14th
A Night for Esme at Beerland Saturday, January 28th. This show is going to amazing and I know there's no way Esme will miss out on it, in spirit.

There's even a shirt with proceeds benefitting her family and perfectly representing the Esme we know and love.

There will be a memorial event this Sunday, January 15th at Fiesta Gardens beginning at 2:00 pm. All the action and coordination taking place by the people who loved Esme certainly soothes the soul. So does this song, which her family posted on her Facebook:

Thursday, January 5, 2012

2012

What I wanna do in Two-Zero-One-Two 
I suppose this is a New Year's resolution list of sorts, but I just like making lists of annual goals that correspond with the year. Well, at least since we've been in the 2000's.

 1.  Write down all of my mind movies
 2.  Finish my writing project AKA 'novel'
 3.  Finally, pay off my credit card debt. After 5 years, I'll be out after my birthday!
 4.  Don't have people in my life just to "have a body" there
 5.  Be as excited about 30 as I was about 18
 6.  Spend time with a loved one daily
 7.  Requisite resolution that we all seem to make annually: lose 10 pounds
 8.  Finally record that children's album before all the babies in my life grow up
 9.  Listen just as much as I talk
10. Travel to Oakland and San Francisco
11. Teach more cats how to sit. Stayten and I've got Merlin sitting for cat treats!
12. Learn how to let my past make me better, and not bitter
13. And one to grow on... make at least 1 piece of art this year


And now, some fun advice inspired by the following song. You might change the way other people feel about you, but that sure as hell doesn't change who you are. Being me and lovin' it since 2011, y'all!


Wednesday, January 4, 2012

2011

My eleven favorite things from 2011

 1. Dumping my loser ex-boyfriend

Treat me like shit, and you get the axe!

 2. Stayten coming into our lives

Stayten and Merlin

 3. Beth moving to Austin

With Beth at Mohawk

 4. My new teeth!!


 5. Finally getting off steroids and medically stabilizing

With Gina, Beth and Bridget in the background.
My big, fat, steroid face in the foreground

 6. Reconnecting with my father after years of not speaking to each other

Sister, father, LD

 7. Watching one of my best friends, Pam, marry her best friend Wells.

Wells and Pam Dunbar

 8. Summertime at Austin's premier beach with AT, JJ, Emily J., Jacob, Gina...

Gina in the water

 9. Rediscovering the girlfriends that I never seemed to have enough time for whenever I had a BF

Gina, Beth, Heather, Jamie, LD at SXSW

10. VEST FRIENDS comedy troupe (why don't we have a group photo?!)

With Audra, but minus Jamie and Julia

11. Living an entire year without a car!

My bike loaded up with laundry

Holiday Wrap-Up

My Christmas was much better than I was bracing myself for. I spent the holidays in Houston with my family and many cats.

Christmas Eve was exciting with my mum, dad, sister, brother-in-law, Auntie Priss, nephew, and niece. We had a delicious lamb dinner and presents on Christmas Eve. The girdle gift I was terrified about turned out to be a lovely spanx slip that is actually pretty enough to be worn without embarrassment. All my complaining about it beforehand hurt my mum's feelings. I got other lovely slips from Auntie Priss and the most delicious apple pie flavored moonshine from my brother-in-law. It had a lovely time with the family.

Stuart under Mum's tree

Crazy aunt Lola with Audrey

with my Stevie P.

On Christmas Day I drove to my father's house and watched the Dallas Mavericks lose in a terrible game against the Miami Heat. It was a disappointing day for basketball, but we drank pomegranate martinis and enjoyed each other's company. I fell in love with his cat Max, who is absolutely gorgeous and sweet to snuggle with. I also got another great present: a set of Kyocera ceramic knives. I actually cut myself with it last night and didn't even bleed, they're that sharp.

Brother Max

My plans to move Jamie up to Dallas didn't pan out and I ended up spending the rest of the week in Austin catching up on chores, watching lots of movies, and doing some dog sitting.

The nose of the beast: Henry 'Pony' LaRoche

Topo Chico in his sweatshirt

I think I would have to say, in terms of gifts, that this was the most amazing Christmas ever. I got a beautiful Tiffany bracelet, fancy knives, a gallon of moonshine, 3 great calendars (and I'll use every one!), Marcel the Shell book, sweet homemade and crafted items that show caring, and a giant flat screen TV! Seriously, I must have been very, very good this year. Thank you to the friends and family that love me!

Monday, January 2, 2012

100lbs of Pure Heart

The first homicide in Austin of 2012 was a beautiful, vivacious, and exceptional woman named Esme Barrera. I feel honored to have been able to call her my friend. She was such a tiny girl, but every ounce of her makeup was pure sweetness. In the short amount of time that I knew her, I remember only ever seeing one frown on that kind face and even that was only because she was sick. Nevertheless, she still got out of bed, ate burgers with Gina, JJ, Jessica and I, and giggled and laughed. She had a passion for life you only see in the movies. This summer I was fortunate enough to meet Esme's mother and quickly learned where that sparkle came from. We've lost an amazing woman, y'all. Please help her family with funeral expenses by donating whatever you can: http://forouresmeb.blogspot.com/



Esme, I wish you could see all the outpouring of love your death has brought. I think you'd be shocked to see how many lives you touched in just 29 years. I'm going to miss talking about cute boys with you and replacing bad words with "cuss". This isn't cussing fair to have to lose you in such a horrible way. The last time I saw you you told me life wouldn't be the same without Emo's. I don't think Austin music will ever quiet be the same without you. Love, love, love...