Halloween Birthday

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My birthday is October 31st, yes Halloween. Even as a kid I never really cared much about it being my birthday. Moving so much I never really had a chance to make any friends. Most kids in school and around the neighborhood didn’t even know who I was, much less when my birthday was, and they didn’t care either. Honestly I didn’t mind it, I liked Halloween anyway. I loved the idea of being able to play dress up and get candy, it seemed so much better than just a birthday party. A party would have been lame, nobody would have come, and besides Halloween candy last longer than cake. Plus I’d pretend that it was all for my birthday anyway, the whole holiday and traditions were secretly created just to celebrate me. It didn’t matter that nobody knew, I knew. As I got older, I let go of the fantasy, but still always liked Halloween. And while I still go and party, especially hard, I rarely tell anybody it’s my birthday too.

The thing I find most interesting about Halloween is how it can be very revealing about a persons true nature. It’s a day that all real norms are ignored. People get to dress up in ridiculous costumes, kids ask strangers for candy, and random acts of vandalism and pranks are mostly laughed off. It really just seems like people use the day as an excuse to indulge in behavior they’d be too self conscious to otherwise. I always wonder about the women that choose a slutty nurse, cop or Olaf costume. (Yes the Disney movie Frozen character inspired a slutty costume.) Yet any other time of year, they judge and put down women calling them sluts because of their attire or behavior, jealous much. Then there’s the darker side people flock to. Beyond the make believe monsters, real life horrors and violence are depicted in costumes, decorations and entertainment. Yes I guess it’s all part of the fun, but when it seems like people have a total different side to them you start to think. I wonder if they’re just revealing a part of themselves they’re too scared to show any other time.

 

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A Few Of My Favorite Things: Romeo and Juliet Movie

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One of my favorite movies is the 90’s remake Romeo and Juliet. Some people think it’s a little odd for me, though, it’s not for the reasons people would expect. I’m not exactly what you’d call a romantic and the tragic star crossed lovers story never really had any effect on me. While most teenage girls were only interested in seeing Leonardo DeCaprio, I couldn’t have cared less. He’s a good actor but I wasn’t into him for his looks like every other girl I knew. I always thought he was a little too pretty. And ugh Claire Danes, her face just literally annoys me. I cheered a little inside when she finally died.

Luckily the rest of the casting was great. John Leguizamo was phenomenal in the role of Tybalt. I don’t remember him doing any serious roles before this and I was surprised at how great of a villain he played. Even more surprising was how damn hot he looked. Seriously, before this movie I always thought of him as goofy and funny looking. I started looking at him in a whole new way after this. My other favorite person in the movie was Mercutio, Harold Perrineau. While he’s been in tons of different movies and TV shows, he will always be Mercutio to me. Literally, anytime I see him all I see is his final scene on the beach. “A curse upon both you’re houses.” In fact all of Romeo’s crew was fun to watch.

What I liked most about the movie was the look of it. I guess that would be the cinematography. I thought their choice of setting made a beautiful background and some of the wide shots of it were beautiful. There was just something about the way shots were framed and how each scene was set up. Also particular effects really helped tell the story. For example the party scene before Romeo sees Juliet, the way everything passes quickly across the screen, simulating his experience of the party while high on drugs. But really the sets, the costumes, everything about the movie is visually stimulating.  It really pulls you in to the story. Lastly, the soundtrack was awesome.

 

Summer Fun

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I really hate summer. It’s too hot, especially in the city with the added humidity. I always feel uncomfortable and I usually have to take at least two showers a day. Even as a kid I hated it, maybe even more at times. I was forced to go to summer camp and despised the whole experience. I refused to participate in any of the sports or outside activities. I barely even liked the pool, it may have been a chance to cool off, but usually they were gross and dirty looking. The only thing I found remotely interesting was arts & crafts, plus it was about the only time we got to sit in an air conditioned room.

But for a couple of years during high school it was actually my favorite time of year. I still hated the heat but I was finally old enough to work but could only get a summer job, working at you guessed it a summer camp. I was miserable at the job, but I had money to burn so it made me happy. Plus I started hanging out with a couple of the girls from the job, Michelle and Carol. They were crazy and fun as hell to hang out with. They’d only go out with older guys so they could get alcohol, they were big drinkers and would try any drug at least once. Carol was a big pill popper, one night we drove around Brooklyn all night with her passed out in the backseat. Michelle’s guy had offered her a handful of pills at the beginning of the night and we figured she ended up taking them all. She woke up just as we were getting ready to leave Coney Island, we ended up there drinking on the beach until the sun came up.

Michelle knew all kinds of crazy guys, who would let us hang out with them. It never occurred to me then to wonder why grown men would want to hang out with teenage girls. Thinking back on how many of them we all hooked up with, I realize we were just easy prey. But hey at the time I didn’t care, and I’m sure if I was them I would have done the same. Shit there was one guy, Matt, that we all pretty much threw ourselves at. Carol and Michelle actually had a fist fight over him, meanwhile I just hooked up with him on the down low. That was the one problem with them, they always had some kind of drama going on. At one point Michelle was seeing this guy, that was literally a crackhead. We tried to tell her she needed to dump him but she was convinced she could save him. Then there was the time Carol wanted to run away and move to Florida. She had met some guy online that lived there, he convinced her he’d take care of all of us if we went to go live with him.

As entertaining as it was most of the time, it was also extremely exhausting. Eventually, we all stopped working at the summer camp. They tried calling me to keep hanging out but I always came up with some excuse and after a while they stopped calling. I admit sometimes I miss them but I just imagine them older still fighting over boys, almost ODing on pills and generally being a mess and realize I’m probably better off without them in my life.

 

Author’s Note: Shameless Self Promotion

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Hello, LexC, writer and creator of Dante here. You wont be hearing from her this week, I decided instead to give you a little update on some other projects I’ve been working on. In other words some shameless promotion.

 

  • There are still copies of Dante’s Tall Tales available. The handmade pamphlet book includes a dozen stories that originally appeared on the blog, edited and much improved. You can find those in my Etsy shop, along with poetry postcards and pocketbooks.
  • I created a book of writing Prompts, you can download it free as a subscriber to the Last Word LexC newsletter. A monthly email with updates on my blogs, different writing projects and Etsy shop. Plus you get sneak peaks at new stories, poetry and other projects. Interested? Find out more and sign up here.

 

If you haven’t checked out my main blog/website, www.lastwordlexc.com., I highly recommend it. Posts cover a wide variety of subjects, including but definitely not limited to writing, books, movies, etc. I also share some fiction and poetry works in progress. Use the link above or check out Meet The Author sidebar on your left to see my latest posts

 

If I Hear One More Happy Friday

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So for pretty much my whole life I haven’t worked a Monday through Friday, 9-5 job. In fact most of my jobs I end up working nights and weekends. Hooray for me and my social life. Actually, it doesn’t really stop me. I’ve had plenty of practice going out, getting wasted and having to drag my ass into work the next day.  I’ve pretty much mastered the art of working hungover, and on rare occasions still drunk.

I don’t even mind and in some cases have preferred to work weekends. But what I can’t deal with are the people that make a big deal every time the weekend rolls around. The worst are the people that actually go around saying “Happy Friday.” They make it seem like it’s this rare occasion or a holiday. I want to scream at the top of my lungs. “Asshole, it’s just another day of the damn week.”

But since that probably wouldn’t go over too well with my bosses I usually just ignore it. Though it was hard to ignore that year I worked in a coffee shop. Almost every customer would always tell me to cheer up Friday morning because the weekend was coming. I’d perk up give, them a big smile. and say, “Well thanks but I work all weekend so that doesn’t mean anything to me.” The best part was that it was usually the same people week after week. But I got my revenge, I usually had Tuesday and Thursday off. So when they’d roll in Monday morning dragging ass, I’d brag about it being my Friday and having the next two days off.

A Few Of My Favorite Things

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I don’t really listen to any new music. It’s all pretty much crap these days, has been for a while. Haven’t even tried listening to anything new after the 90’s. I used to always have the radio on. But it started to suck so bad I refused to listen to stations that play anything new. I won’t even try. Instead I stick with old favorites I grew up with, like Queen. My favorite song ever is “Bohemian Rhapsody.” All their songs are awesome but I just love that one. I recently found this video of the song being acted out, it just made me love it even more.

 

This is one of those rare occasions where I actually love the internet. Yeah it produces a lot of crap but finding this gem makes it worthwhile.

I’ll Never Tell: My Darkest Days

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My biggest secret is a couple of months after my mother’s death I was hospitalized for a supposed suicide attempt. It wasn’t really, I wouldn’t do that. As you can imagine, my mother’s death was pretty much devastating. It is and probably will always be the most traumatic thing I’ve had to go through. I thought the only solution was to block out the pain. Instead of going to school, I’d cut classes hanging out with the school drunks, pothead and pill poppers. I like drinking but sometimes it made me more emotional, and weed made me think too much. But the pills I liked. I knew kids that could get pretty much anything, mostly I took an assortment of painkillers or Xanax, anything that left me feeling sedated and numb. Combined with a couple of drinks, it worked quite well.

That was until one night hanging out with some older guys I drank about half a bottle of whiskey. When I got home I was alone and upset. My brother had his own place and my father was always out. He was too caught up in his own issues. I must have lost track of what I drank or what pills I took. By some miracle my brother had come over to check on me. I was passed out and he couldn’t wake me up. When he found my stash of pills he freaked and took me to the hospital. I had to stay there for almost two weeks. My brother finally convinced them to release me on the condition I’d continue with grief counseling. I guess it was a little bit of a wake up call for my father, he stopped going out and spent every night at home with me. It was torture, between him and my brother I could barely take a shit alone. Seriously if I was in the bathroom more than two minutes they’d knock on the door to check on me.

But my father’s attention wore thin after about a month. First he just went out on weekends and only if my brother came over. Slowly it progressed back to every night. And my brother’s visits became fewer and farther between. It wasn’t really necessary, I was never touching another pill again. I even started going back to classes and waited for weekend nights to do my drinking.

 

 

Mother’s Day Without a Mother

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The first couple of years after my mother died were pretty rough for me. The worst of course being when Mother’s Day rolled around. It had been a day we usually spent together, just the two of us. Not that my brother and father didn’t do anything for her. We all did the obligatory breakfast, my father doing most of the cooking, the kids helping. (More like getting in the way and making a mess.) Once that was done and gifts were open, it was up to my mother how to spend the rest of the day. The one thing she always wanted to do every year was go to the nail salon and get a pedicure and manicure. She never went any other time, she really thought it was a waste of time and money. But it was the special treat she enjoyed every year for Mother’s day. While many mothers would have gone alone, making sure to take full advantage of a day of freedom, my mother always brought me along. Usually we’d also go for a long walk when it was nice, have lunch, go shopping, or whatever else she felt like doing.

So those first couple of Mother’s days without her were about the hardest thing I had to go through. It was harder than the funeral and every other holiday combined. The first couple of years I pretty much locked myself in the house and tried to avoid anything that would remotely remind me of the day. Eventually though I learned to get over it, well not quite get over it more like deal with it. It’s not like I can avoid being reminded it’s coming up, because every advertisement and commercial wont’ let you. But I try not to think about it and usually am not aware of the day it actually falls on. Some people ask me if I do something special, “you know like to honor her memory or to keep her memory alive.” My response is usually pretty shitty. She’s my mother I remember her everyday of my life. Not like I’m going to forget her because I don’t do something to remind myself of how much it sucks that she’s gone one day a year.

 

 

 

I’ll Never Tell: My Gay Love Affair

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In Junior High school I wasn’t exactly well liked. In fact pretty much nobody talked to me. I didn’t mind it suited me just fine. Except that I had a huge crush on one of the most popular guys in school. the fact that he had absolutely no idea who I was didn’t help. Well that is until one day we ran into each other outside of school. Well technically I didn’t so much as run into him but happen to notice him in the same park as I was. It was late at night and me and some friends had parked ourselves in the school yard of a local elementary school late at night. I spotted him in a dark corner. I wondered at first what the hell he would be doing in the school yard by himself, much less hiding in a dark corner. As I watched he was then joined by another guy, a older guy who was kind of skeezy looking. It didn’t take long to figure out why they were there. I left not really wanting to see anymore than I already did.

A couple days later we were both being held near the side entrance of the school for being late. Not really caring what his preference was I decided to blackmail him into being my boyfriend. I told him about seeing him hanging out at the school yard with his older “friend.” He reacted exactly how I expected, asking me not to tell anybody. He was scared of being made fun of, plus he kind of a big deal on some of the school sports teams. He couldn’t imagine what it would do for his reputation with the guys on the team. Of course I told him I’d keep his secret, even give him a cover by pretenting to be his girlfriend. Obviously it shocked most people since they thought I wasn’t worthy of his attention. But ultimately they all end kissing my ass. Funny thing was I actually hated that part. I didn’t care that he was gay. I milked it just to be able to makeout with him and shit. Honestly I think a part of me thought I might be able to even convince him to change his mind. I eventually got tired of dealing with his popular group of friends and ended it. Not too long after, sometime during high school, he came out. I’ve always claimed to have no idea.

Social Media Sucks

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I’m totally over social media and the idiots that have overrun it and let it run their lives. I don’t have a Facebook account, not anymore at least. I will admit for a long time I was totally on the bandwagon. In fact I loved MySpace when it first came out and continued to love it even as everybody seemed to abandon it. I tried holding on for as long as possible but when it began to freeze my computer every time I tried logging in, I had to give it up. I guess the thing was I’ve always been pretty big on meeting people online. Before social media I loved visiting chatrooms and used a variety of IM services. The difference was though everything was always superficial and fun. It was an easy way to have casual conversations about dumb teenage stuff, music, school sucking, parents not understanding, etc. It was also a way to escape the real world and the real world people that were the source of my social aggravation. (Is that a thing? Well sounds good so I’ll stick with it.)

Now it’s just gotten so serious and is so part of everybody’s lives the fun got sucked out of it. When I started getting friend requests from family members it was time to quit. Besides I couldn’t care less about the things people post and a lot of my “friends” weren’t really friends. I don’t want to know them any better. I want to hang out, have a couple of drinks, talk and maybe argue about dumb shit, have some laughs and that’s it. I don’t want to know what their opinion on the president is, or see pictures of their kids or cats. I don’t care about shelter animals that need to be adopted, little kids dying of cancer that need prayers, or the latest petition to ban bestiality in another country (yes that was totally a real thing). I don’t care if somebody is having a shitty day, week or month; unless they are buying me a drink while complaining.

I can’t deny its usefulness, I’ve actually gotten work as a designer through social networking. More so in the early days but I do still have some accounts where I post work. But I repeat it’s not actually fun, it’s in fact all for work. And to be honest as more of the idiots take over, it feels like it’s less and less worth the effort. I’m just glad on Twitter and Instagram I can mostly avoid anybody I know in real life. If they do happen to find me and follow my account it still doesn’t really involve much interaction. As far as Facebook goes though,  I been done with that, no matter how many people look at me like I’m crazy when I tell them.