ambition, beauty, character, courage, creativity, culture, desire, emotion, empowerment, experience, fiction, flash fiction, freedom, hunger, inspiration, life, passion, purpose, short fiction, short stories, Uncategorized, women

tiny revolutions

Rita paced the small area off stage, listening to the crowd pop for Kevin, biting back the observation that Kevin was in a world of trouble if he ever got past the open mic night stage. He had mistaken volume for passion, and Rita had sworn blind that he had appropriated a Eddie Pepitone bit about how hard it was being a male model. Still, she knew that making him look bad didn’t help her out.

People liked Kevin more than her. He had an earnest, sweaty charm that lowered people’s expectations.

Rita tasted the rust of envy on her tongue with every swallow. She chased it down with a sip of water, pacing to build the adrenaline up. She had a good ten minutes of new material, in addition to the five good minutes that she had refined over the last year. Travelling from clubs to parking lots, a whole tank of gas for a good hour’s performing and yet she could not explain how it filled her head with white light, heat and excitement. Sacrificing her nerves on the altar of the stage.

She had bombed before. She was prepared to do so each time out, and that made her less afraid to take risks. Kevin moved past her, in a fog of flopsweat as he grinned at her without speaking. The MC announced her, and on legs that were hollow with nerves, she went onstage.

Her voice was high pitched, and the lights were harsh enough to make her squint. She had to adjust the mic stand which fed her nerves as she struggled with it.

‘Having some trouble there, short stuff?’

That came from the table to her left. Four guys, ties hanging from their neck like flaccid silk genitals, high fiving one another at how clever they were. Rita was willing to bet that none of the guys had gotten shit. She swallowed, her teeth were like plates of tin wedged into tender gums and she smiled as her mind screamed at her to GET THE STAND FIXED.

She gripped the microphone, her nerves and tendons shook with the current as her teeth chatted together, her eyes surging forward in their sockets.

the universe, all made sense as an emergent structure, viewed from outside it was a symphony, a climbing vine on a building and oh god she wanted to make eye contact with what peered through the windows. Gaseous angels with carnival glass wings came to her, offered her revelation, told her that a higher world called and all she had to do was let go. 

She looked into the eyes of one, saw a child like joy and acceptance, and it’s smile was glorious, sunrise on an alien planet and asked what she wanted, what kept her chained to the meat. 

‘What do I want?’

Not to keep being asked if men are the problem every fucking time when it’s other women who’ve knifed me in the kidneys if there’s a chance I might steal their spot, not to see  posting blogs or trolling comments as a way of getting their name out, to not be judged on how i look. To have a special on hbo or comedy central, to make awkward conversation with trevor noah. Not the music of the spheres, not bliss or nirvana or samadhi, not even fame or fortune really but one thing. 

To move this fucking mic stand. 

It closed it’s eyes, wrapped it’s glass wings around her, touched her face with hands cool as mountain stone and nodded once. 

She gasped as the stand lifted and she did the swiftest body check ever, relieved that the heat between her thighs was anxious perspiration rather than having pissed herself. She grinned and stared at the guy who made the comment.

‘I bet that’s a question you get asked more than me, buddy. Especially when you’re naked, yeah?’

The peal of laughter washed over her, it felt like home, a validation that made the chill embrace of the previous moment become detached from her present. After that, she really was home. When she came off stage, she was taller, stronger even as her hands shook with emotion. The MC patted her on the shoulder, told her that she had done good out there. Meant it too.

After that night, Rita began to walk her path with uncanny focus. She ended up doing Joe Rogan’s podcast and Comedy Bang Bang, each time out, she would be asked about her process and she’d smile, shrug her shoulders and feel the cool hands on her face each time, knowing that she had chosen well.

 

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comics, Uncategorized

Deadpool

deadpool-movie-colussus-negasonic-warhead

Synopsis:

Wade Wilson (Ryan Reynolds) is a former Special Forces operative who now works as a mercenary. His world comes crashing down when the evil Ajax (Ed Skrein) tortures, disfigures and transforms him into Deadpool. The rogue experiment leaves Deadpool with accelerated healing powers and a twisted sense of humor. With help from mutant allies Negasonic Teenage Warhead (Brianna Hildebrand) and Colossus (Stefan Kapicic), Deadpool uses his new skills to hunt down the man who nearly destroyed his life.

At some point, the comics industry needs to come out and accept that kids aren’t reading comics in the same numbers that they did back in the golden/silver age. Especially superhero comics and what was wonderful about Deadpool is that it’s cheerfully and openly adult in it’s humour, scatological and awash with dark jokes, sight gags, continuity references and fourth wall breaking observations that had me giggling when the film did not have me open mouthed with surprise and delight.

Ryan Reynolds is a classic leading man, handsome and self aware with an independent sensibility and an awareness of the ridiculous that fits perfectly within this milieu. Even his voice performance is wry and amusing, his chemistry with Morena Baccarin is brazen and sensual whilst having an endearing sweetness that makes it palatable.

The film works so well because it understands and embraces the spectacle of the comic books, fights and gore that defy physics and biology like a live action Looney Tunes. It’s a million times better than the grim-dark earnestness of Man of Steel and the upcoming Dawn of Justice. It has Gina Carano in it, TJ Miller as a comedic sidekick is wonderful and Alex Skrein as a physically appealing and morally reprehensible antagonist.

Go see it, because I want a sequel. It’s funny and appealing in all the ways that matter.

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Uncategorized

Broad City

It’s funny, wild and realistic, in that it details the low wage struggles of two friends.

I might also be slightly in love with Alana. 

Soulstice is delightfully observed, a petulant gym with faux spirituality and a viciously dismissive pecking order. Lincoln is lovingly observed as a man seeking something more with Alana than she’s willing to give, there’s an edge to the women as well as an endearing sloppiness. 

‘I never see a bucket drummer class anywhere.’ 

The cleaning scene with Fred Armisen made me cry with laughter, as much for the awkwardness in the women’s body language. Then it goes to another level entirely and it was at that point that I decided I would stick with the show.  It’s funnier and more observed than Girls, but there’s room for more shows like this. Honest, genuinely human and funny shows where a woman’s flaws are seen as being as beautiful as the rest of her. 

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Uncategorized

http://www.theguardian.com/tv-and-radio/2014/jun/09/rik-mayall-dies-comedian-actor

He was, in essence, one of the comic actors/comedians that I used to watch voraciously. The Young Ones, Bottom, The New Statesman were all superb shows. He was anarchic and irreverent in a way that so few are these days and I am gutted that he’s passed on, although we all go at some point, I was hoping he’d live to a grander age than 56. 

I can’t imagine what his friends and family are going through and I hope that they see the love and kindness his work inspired. 

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Uncategorized

Trailer Park Boys

Watched the first season of Trailer Park Boys and it was surprisingly sweet and moving.  There’s genuine humanity amidst the humour and I don’t know why it hasn’t gotten over better than it has. 

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Uncategorized

Louis CK

It’s a mistake to presume that anyone gets to a point in their career without a combination of factors. In NLP, modelling posits that you look at someone who is doing something that you would like to be doing. 

Louis CK is a comedian who sells out tours, has a critically acclaimed television show that is insightful, sensitive and incredibly funny/honest, with generous roles for the people who interact with him onscreen. I think he’s fucking brilliant, his whole approach is amazing and I’ve never seen anything he’s done and not come away feeling in awe of him. 

But his approach works for him. You can let him inspire you, use him as a guide to working on your purpose.

His honesty, his willingness to look ugly or uncomfortable for comedic effect and beneath all that, the sense that he will never make a decision that isn’t about making better art. He makes people laugh and he does it consistently. 

When you see him with his nose bandaged up, discussing how he’s garnishing his future earnings for a moment’s pleasure, that’s someone who is exploring the sublime area between comedy and tragedy. Filmed in the wrong/right light, it would be akin to Lars Von Trier but even at the end of the episode ‘Model’ there is still hope for him. That’s careful and considered storytelling rather than sentiment, nuance and ambiguity done so well that you laugh and feel privileged to have shared an episode of a tv show. 

 

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