Thursday, February 25, 2010

The Fall of Texas

Last night, Tara and I went to Symphony Space for their Selected Shorts series. What made it really exciting was that the first story read (by Cynthia Nixon) was written by my writing workshop teacher, Joyce Johnson. Not on only did I really enjoy the story, but I've been chewing on it ever since. There is a really powerful question said in passing to the protagonist- "Why do you hang back?" WHat I liked about this question is that after the show, Tara and I went to a bar where a bunch of her friends were celebrating a birthday. I found myself, "hanging back" as I usually do in those situations and I couldn't get the question out of my head  nor I could venture out into the scary world of conversing with strangers. But by the end o fthe night I was glad I had gone and even more glad that I got a liitle more practice at "hanging on."

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Joannie Rochette

If you did ot see Joannie Rochette's emtional Olympic performance just two days after the sudden death of her mother, do yourself a favor, find it, and watch this piece of art.

Friday, February 19, 2010

one is the loneliest number

dear rewind revise blog,

don't worry. i did not forget you. i am just really excited about my new blog with vio, a film blog called http://skipriporplay.blogspot.com/ . You may have heard of it. Anyway, I just want you to know that I still love blogging on you, but it is nice to have a blog that has a specific subject, posts that i can assign myself and more debate and conversation. comments is the key word here. you will always be my first blog love and you will continue to be my writing outlet for all the rants and heavy things i need to express to the wonderful anonymous world of cyberspace. i started you as an exercise in accountabilty, a personal demand to ensure i wrote everyday. i have slipped away from that a little, but i don't want you to worry. i'm still here! even if http://skipriporplay.blogspot.com/ is more fun right now, you are the first love that can never be replaced. thanks for the blogging memories and the future non-film ones to come.

signed,

tony

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

snow day just for me

make delicious breakfast with yogurt, strawberries, granola and honey
drop off laundry even though you feel you should do it since you have a day off
work out
but burrito for lunch and erase workout
buy loreal 6R
take care of hair
listen and sing along to beatles as loud as you can stand it
write
study more spanish
head to mahattan to discuss new film blog!!!!
on to writing workshop
meet up with carmen and hand over a gift for friend in new zealand
go to sleep
dream of having another snow day just for me

Thursday, February 11, 2010

i don't hate women

so after my last rant
i was oddly corrected by, oh, i don't know, lets say the universe
today i wrote emails back and forth with carmen and felt sad and perhaps a little jealous that she will be leaving for so long soon
i made plans to develop a story with carmen over the summer
i made plans with tara to listen to some stories
i made plans with isabel to listen to some stories
i had a class with vio followed by some talk for our new blog (coming soon...)
and then i had a wonderful long phone call with my friend in new orleans, lindsay
we talked a lot about stories.
the day was filled with connecting with strong, interesting and smart women
all of whom i keep near and dear to my heart, and talking about the thing i love most in this world
and i realized these are my girlfriends
i actually have girlfriends
and that as much as i feel more comfortable with men
the people who really know me in this world are my girlfriends
(and mike and my brother and father of course)
the point is, i don't hate women
in fact some of the people i love the most in the world are women
maybe i am mistaking hate with mistrust, mistrust with uncomfortable
or maybe i was really that annoyed with those particular women
or maybe, i just have my period.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

women

Its vagina season
and this year i try to get into the spirit.
i even post eve ensler's speech about how girls can save the world as my facebook status
but the truth is, i didn't listen to the whole thing
the truth is i cringe when i hear the word "girl"
and i hate the fucking phrase "i'm an emotional creature"
even though i know i should embrace it and really like it
i even tried reciting some of eve's speech at a gathering of friends
but the truth is, i lied
i don't fully believe in that speech
i don't feel empowered by my vagina
and i know no matter how smart i get or how many degrees i may attain,
i know that aging will be the death of so many opportunities for me.
i sit in a writing workshop with all women, this time
all different ages but all with the same private parts
we are told to introduce ourselves i.e. our names and our goals
what are we planning on writing in this class?
like most first meetings, first classes, or first days of school
i sit quietly, observing, not speaking up
i see what i'm up against
and the fact that i see a room full of women as something i'm "up against" has its own problems,
i know
i'm aware of that
but that is what i hate so much
that i'm so fucking aware of it
and yet i don't know how to reverse my thinking, retract my gut instinct to judge them and size them up within the first few sentences they give me
i watch who talks too long
i watch who slumps
i watch her say her name and list her degrees as one sentence as if she alone cannot stand without them
i watch a grieving mother try to convince us that she is really okay and wants us to criticize her openly about the book she is writing on her daughter's murder trial
i watch a new york times reporter laugh at the idea that she can write a homework assignment by Friday
and i watch how half the room agrees with her, jumping on her band wagon because she has the coolest job in the room
i watch two teachers, one pretty one angry, one unassuming and one a declarative woman of color feminist, one smarter than the other
and i watch my teacher glance at me when she explains to the class that she thinks it is important to write about teaching because somewhere it has gone horribly wrong
she has students, grad students who don't know how to use different tenses, who are obsessed with the present tense and have read nothing
she looks again at me
yes i know that my grammar is atrocious
it might not have been so awkward if she had not announced me as an old student of hers at the beginning of class
now, they too know i don't know hot to put together a complex sentence
but even more than her glance which may have meant nothing is the hole burning through my bag with the weight of native son and the grapes of wrath
two books i checked out of the library yesterday in secret because i know these are books i should have read by now.
at the end of class i am stuck in an elevator with a former writer for the national enquirer and she asks me about our teacher
and i say she is really good, she is a tough critic
i equate tough with good
sometimes confusing pain with honor
she tells me she thinks the teacher was very supportive tonight and then she asks me if i think she really meant all the positive things she said
and this is why i hate women
i see her gaze shift and i know that i have walked into a trap
whatever i say next will inevitably be in danger of being misinterpreted, twisted and perhaps used as expository gossip when a few of these women drop out in a couple weeks
i am on the defensive already and its only been two hours with this group
i wonder if i can do this again
and i know that i can and that it will be uncomfortable
but maybe this time i will get a little farther in learning another thing or two about these emotional creatures.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

go marching in

like a slow pull on a trombone
the heavy hand on a drum
the fall of the thud as it reverberates off the skin of the percussion, the beat of the heart, the foot on the leather
this is the song of a people
the victory chant of an endless battle
the snapshot of the spirit of a town that just won't quit
these are the saints and tonight the night is for them

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

mike took this awesome picture

the art of storytelling

the best way to see if you are telling a story is to say it aloud and perform it
i went to the moth monday night which is probably part of the reason i am sick in bed today
but it was worth it
i think i found my niche
its better than stand up because the success of the performance is not based on laughter
there's no one standing up there picking on audience members
and there is no one up there completely bombing
when you tell a story, there is something raw, universal and humanistic that connects with the audience immediately
there is something inherently supportive in it
the stories all have a natural humor and power to them.
there is something stripping about the stage.
anyhow, for anyone who reads this, we ended up sitting with morgot leitman, who won the slam last week. i know her as a substitute teacher at vcs. and margot's friend Nick won the slam on monday with an awesome story-powerful, moving, funny
when the podcast gets up check out "Winter" at the Southpaw in Brooklyn