Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Evening: INT

Check it out! The trailer for one of the films I shot over the summer:

If you have a minute, click on over to YouTube and give the trailer some love.


I will love him, an squeeze him, an call him George!

Monday, September 28, 2009

Husk cherries.

They make me believe in a higher power.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Sidewalk Art

Somewhere in the East Village

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Feet shoulder-width apart.

I want to do this every day. Right now I'm lucky if I squeeze in thirty minutes every three days, but I want to quit drinking coffee and start spending an hour every morning doing this instead. I think it would change my life.

But I'm scared shitless.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Sometimes his eyes turn blue

He has a moon cycle too. Every month he sheds his skin and for a few days before, his flesh turns dull and thick. His topmost layer of skin is drying and tightening against his body. You shed your skin a little bit every day, but he sheds his all at once. It's not comfortable. He becomes irritable, his belly becomes red and inflamed looking, and his eyes turn a milky blue. During this time, he is virtually blind and does not want to be messed with. He won't eat, he won't drink, he'll sit under his rock, curled tight until he can't bear it anymore. And then one night while we're sleeping, he'll uncoil himself and slither from under his hiding spot. He'll rub his body against rocks like a bear scratching his back on a tree. And little by little his skin will peel.

You can always tell if your python is happy by the way he sheds. Does his skin flake off in little pieces? Then his environment is not suiting him. Does he leave his skin behind him, like a dirty old gym sock? That is the sign of a happy boy.

It's just occurred to me that there will probably be a whole lot of snake themed pictures coming up on this blog, so I think it's time I add a Mephistopheles label over there on screen right, and also maybe tell you a little about the real Mephistopheles, whom my beloved python is named for.

Actually though? Why don't you just click here and find out?

Thursday, September 24, 2009

A Express

Imagine that you are on the subway on your way home from a long day at work. Lucky you, you have a seat. However, you've forgotten your book, so instead you are looking around at the weary people in front of you. You can do that, because all of the people's faces are far above yours; they won't notice that you are watching. You are below their eye level. And, you tell yourself, people-watching is harmless anyway.

There is a woman standing in front of you. She's pretty, she's young, she's wearing a wedding ring. She has a black leather purse over one shoulder, a canvas shoulder bag over the other, a coat draped over her left arm which holds a book just below her chin. She is engrossed in the book. Her right arm is stretched up, over her head, and she is holding onto the rail. She is surrounded by people. The car bumps and you notice that her right knee just barely touches your left knee. She must have noticed too, because she takes a small step away from you, a very small step because really, there is nowhere for her to go. She is pressed into the crowd. You are grateful that you've got a seat, you've got breathing room, you are below everyone's eye level. The car jumps again and you notice that the man behind the woman, probably somewhere in his forties, 6 ft 2 or 3, around 240 lbs, is moving his hand, barely, but he is moving his hand and he places it on the woman's bottom. No, no, he isn't actually touching her, he's half a centimeter away from touching her, and then, with just his thumb, he touches her. He slides his thumb along the slope of her bottom and she flinches, slightly, but before she can look up from her book to see what's happened, he's turned his back on her. The car comes to a stop, the doors open, a flood of people pour out, a flood of people pour on, the man has backed away from the woman, there are several people between them now. The woman has buried her nose in her book. You aren't even sure if you saw what you saw. Maybe you imagined it. You must have imagined it. Of course you imagined it. That wouldn't have happened, how silly! You look over at the man. Has he moved? He's closer than before. Yes, yes, he's making his way through the crowd, he is standing behind the woman again. Maybe they know each other. That must be it. He's an old boyfriend or something, and when she finally notices him it will be a happy reunion. Of course. New York is full of random reunions like that. The man is doing something with his hand, something with his hand but he is behind the woman, so you can't see what it is. He closes his eyes. God, it looks like he's masturbating! Isn't that funny? Or, no, he's probably fallen asleep. My, you have a dirty mind! Yes, it must be that he's just exhausted and barely falling asleep, his eyes are closed and his head is nodding, his head lolls forward and the car jerks and you see the man's penis.

He has his penis out and he is fondling it and now he is stroking the woman's bottom with the tip of his penis. You look up at the woman. Her brow is furrowed. Does she feel him? Does she know what's happening? Or is she so engrossed in her book that she doesn't notice? Of course she notices. How could she not notice? Why doesn't she say something? Should you say something? Should you?


The woman flinches and takes a long step away from the man, pushing into the person beside her, who sticks out an elbow and shoves her back into the man. The car stops. He's put his penis away. He gets off the car with the flood of people who pour out. The woman's face is flushed. Her eyes are watery. She has not looked up from her book, not once. You lean over and tap her hand.

"Excuse me, Miss? You need to go home and wash."
"You need to go home and wash. That man was doing something very bad. Very inappropriate."
"What? What? What was he doing?"
You shake your head. "Just go home and wash." And then you look away.

You don't look at the woman again, not once. She rushes off at the next stop, but you don't look up to see if there are tears on her cheeks or stains on her dress. You look away. You always look away.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Tricia's Famous Chicken

So, it's really Tricia's Only Chicken, but who's counting?

The herbs, (thyme, oregano and sage) are fresh from my pseudo-herb garden. I'm a little bit proud of that.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Houston? We have a problem.

Meet Miss Mouse:

Once upon a time, when I was but a wee teenaged girl, my friend Dave came to pick me up for a play date and introduced me to his new pet mouse, Meaty. Having just been purchased, Meaty Mouse was crouched at the bottom of a small brown paper bag, similar to a child's lunch sack.

I was not easily fooled.

"You got a pet snake!" I asked, excited.
"Uh.... no. I got ... a pet mouse." He grinned sheepishly.
"You got a snake. This is totally snake food."
"Uh.... no it's not."

When we arrived at his house it was clear that little Meaty Mouse was indeed snake food. In Dave's room was a brand new tank and in the tank was a bright red corn snake.

"Sweet!" I shrieked. "Can I feed him?"
Dave frowned. "Doesn't it freak you out?" He'd been looking forward to scaring me.
"Why would it freak me out?"

And then I explained to Dave how it was probably safest for his snake if we killed the mouse first, otherwise the mouse could injure the snake trying to protect itself. "How do you kill the mouse?" he wanted to know.

Dave was a kid obsessed with horror films. Monster movies, slasher flicks, psycho thrillers, didn't matter, he loved it all. We spent our weekends covered in red karo, bellies layered in raw ground beef, screaming our heads off at his dad's camcorder. The walls of his bedroom, from the carpeting to the popcorn ceiling, were literally papered with monster movie posters, photos of zombie-bite victims, psycho clown killers, blood, gore and festering wounds. I never could figure out how he slept in there. I was a girl who slept with the lights on in her pink flowered bedroom for six weeks after seeing Bride of Chucky.

What I did next made Dave grimace.

I took the paper bag, Meaty Mouse still inside, and whacked it over the top of Dave's dresser. And then I dumped the dead mouse in the snake tank and watched, with wonder, as the snake whipped it's lithe body around the rodent and began the arduous task of swallowing it whole.

You think you know where this is going. You think this is a story about how Meph has come home and Miss Mouse pictured above must be one of my latest mousetricide victims.

Actually? This is a story about a mouse who wandered into my bathtub and then found herself lovingly transported to a nearby park, while my neighbors screamed and yelled and begged me to drop her in the incinerator.

A mouse. In my bathtub. Did you get that?

I don't kill anything anymore. I can't kill spiders, which I loath and despise, let alone small fuzzy mammals. I grew up to be so opposite being able to kill small creatures that this one time, Meph rejected a rat and when it gave birth to ten babies the very next day, I decided to keep them all as pets. I just couldn't feed an entire family to the snake. One grown rat, fine. But a mama and her babies? Couldn't do it.

Also? I had no idea the rat was pregnant when I bought her. She looked awfully fat, but I didn't think anything of it. The babies came as a huge surprise.

Do you think animals give birth and then think to themselves, "Whoa! Did that just come out of my VAGINA?" I guess not. I guess animals don't call it a vagina.

Since I didn't have the heart to feed an entire family of rats to my snake, I bought an enormous "rat condo" (god forbid we use the word "cage"), kept the mama well fed and watched her babies grow. When the babies grew into full-grown rats it became very clear very quickly that my sense of smell could not live with eleven rats, I ended up driving them back at the pet store where I bought the mama and making the sales girl promise to sell them only as companion animals. Companion animals for somebody's boa restrictor, I'm sure she thought as I walked out of the shop.

So the other morning there was a mouse in my bathtub. I don't know how she (I looked) got there, but there she was. Not a purchased-from-a-pet-store-as-snake-food-that-somehow-escaped mouse, but a wild-New-York-City-sewer-mouse.

One time? I sublet a studio at 8th Avenue and 14th Street for one thousand dollars a month. I shared it with another girl and our only window faced a brick wall. I could actually put my hand out the window and place my palm on the wall, it was that close. There was absolutely no natural light in that dank little apartment There were also no closets. Instead there was a terrible mouse infestation, thanks to the bakery we shared the building with. I used to lay in bed at night listening to them scurry and scream. They were so loud I was sure they were rats until I actually saw one one night. Before making coffee in the morning, I had to scrub the kitchen counter with bleach, after I'd wiped away all the mouse shit and dried pools of mouse urine. But hey! Our rent was only a thousand dollars a month! (Each.)

Here's this little mouse trapped in my bathtub, and I don't know what kind of diseases she may be carrying, but she's small and fuzzy and adorable. Killing her is simply out of the question. I also don't want to feed her to the python because if she is carrying disease, I don't know how his system will handle it. However? I have two cats. And cats always eat city mice, that's the point of cats in the city, hey! I've finally found something the cats can do to pitch in for ALL THAT KIBBLE THEY EAT.

I grabbed Toby and put him in the bathtub. He was instantly .... bored. He cocked his head to one side, leaned down, sniffed the mouse, looked up at me disdainfully. I thought maybe he just needed some privacy, so I shut the bathroom door and went to the kitchen to pour myself another cup of coffee. When I poked my head back in five minutes later, Toby was sitting regally in the tub, his tail twitching gently, eyes fixed on me, Miss Mouse running circles at his feet.

I switched him out for Amelia who took one look at that little mouse and nearly clawed my eyes out trying to get away. You'd have the thought the tub was full of boiling acid, the way she fought me. Sure, there was the time I bought her the battery-operated mouse-toy and she cowered behind the sofa when I turned it on. But I'd always believed in my heart of hearts that she was a killer. I couldn't have been more wrong. That was the day my cats won the award for Worst Cats In The Entire History Of Cats.

Ultimately I decided to do what I do with spiders. I trapped Miss Mouse under a plastic container, slid a piece of cardboard under her and gently flipped the container over. After I fed her a piece of cheese and made sure she had some water*, I poke a whole in the lid of the container and snapped it on. Then I walked her to the park for her release, amid my neighbors vehement cries of protest:

"Just put it on the ground! I'll stomp on it!"
"Drop it in the incinerator!"

After I'd released her, I couldn't help but think of what my mother would say when I mentioned I'd found a mouse in my bathtub:

"Oh God. You didn't decide to keep it, did you?"

*I don't usually feed spiders cheese and water. I usually just dump them out the window.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

If I were a painter

This would be my still life:

So beautiful. A parade of soft pastel, iridescent lavenders and pinks and blues. Gorgeous. I want to paint this.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

On set

The shoot for Chase Thompson tops my list of Most Wonderful Acting Experiences. It is a real treat to have the opportunity to work with a group of people who are professional, organized, thoughtful, talented, collaborative and joyful. The entire cast and crew of Chase Thompson, the film by Vincent Lin that I worked on over Labor Day weekend, was a dream. Each day of our three day shoot was long, but not once did I wish to be somewhere else. When my alarm went off at 3:00 a.m. I leapt out of bed, excited to head to the set. I kept my cellphone off for three days because I did not want to be interrupted from my work. I hid from time pieces because I didn't want to be reminded of the time. I did not want to stop. I just wanted to stay put, in the moment, with those people, working on that film.

That is what movie making should always be.

I needed that. I had begun to feel frustrated and wary, twisted up with negative thoughts, tied with a bow of self-disgust.

Thank goodness for wonderful artists who remind me why I'm an actor, why I chose this non-conventional lifestyle and why I'm in New York.


Tuesday, September 15, 2009

From another place

Mephistopheles is home!

Now I gotta find a pet store that sells feeder rodents.....

Maybe I should ask this guy?

After I took his picture he totally tried to eat my brains.

And I was all, Dude! Back off! Your zombie flesh smells like rotting farts!

The end.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Little Wolf

Um, Valentine? You've got a little breakfast stuck between your toes.....


Sunday, September 13, 2009

Meat Eaters

This was too good for a photo:

You're welcome!


Saturday, September 12, 2009

Z0mBie hUntErZ

Costume and make-up test for Z0mBie hUntErz, a film by Chase Thompson.

And also Chase Thompson, a film by Vincent Lin.



Friday, September 11, 2009

How much?

How much do you love my new fall jacket?


P.S. Let's each do our best to wish peace for our world today.

Thursday, September 10, 2009


Mike and his brother took 1,555 photos on their backpacking trip. That's 2.5 GB of information. I haven't even come close to looking at all of them yet, but this one popped out at me. And I've decided that despite the lack of restrooms, showers, malls and restaurants, the next time they go, I want in.

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Downtown Local C

This whole starving artist thing? Sometimes it's AWESOME.


If I could live anywhere in Manhattan, I'd live on the Lower East Side. People there clearly just get me.


Tuesday, September 08, 2009

I'm telling it to SHUT IT.

8/28/09 - FAIL

8/29/09 - FAIL

That's what I hear in my head when I realize I haven't kept up with The Project for a few days.

Sometimes I am just too in the moment to try and take photos because, have you ever noticed that the minute you hold a camera up to your face, it's as if you've just slapped a filter on life?

Sometimes I am just too busy to try and take photos.

Sometimes I remember (and I'm telling myself this more than I'm telling you) I remember that the point is not just to take photos. THE POINT IS TO BE CREATIVE.

And then there are the days when I wake up in the morning, eat, shower and go to work. And then I come home, eat, brush my teeth and go to bed. I seem to be having a lot of those days lately.

And yet? All this work that is keeping me so busy? It includes the following:

1) I've been hired to sing on the demo of a brand-spanking-new musical. Even better? I'm singing the Leading Lady role. And the music is so great I can't get it out of my head.

2) I've been hired to play the lead in an independent film by a director who's previous work has been on the festival circuit, and it's crazy because I honestly don't think I've ever worked on an independent film that felt this professional and this well put together. It's kind of surreal. And absolutely wonderful. And a lot of fun.

So all this work I'm doing? It's pretty awesome.

And to that little voice in my head? SHUT THE F UP.

8/28/09 - WIN

8/29/09 - WIN

Monday, September 07, 2009

The Unveiling

Of course, as soon as I took these and got permission to post them, he declared them both unfinished and went back to work. And then he made them even better.

I am very proud of him.

I wish you could see them in person. Much of the detail is lost in the photograph. But you get the idea.

Two headed boy

Don't take those pills your boyfriend gave you

I urge you to click on the photos so you can see more of the detail. Look closely at the boys face. The detail is incredible. And the dresser on the right in the second painting - that open drawer seems alive to me. Also, check out the reflection in the mirror. It's ghostly!


Sunday, September 06, 2009


I hope you were eating when you saw this.


Saturday, September 05, 2009

So good to have him home.



Good morning, Sunshine!

Me: Can you explain why it is that you feel the need to use your feet to shove the covers off of your body all the way down to the foot of the bed where they get all tangled up and make it nearly impossible for me to make the bed?

Him: Is there anything I do that I've been doing for my entire life that doesn't irritate you?

Friday, September 04, 2009

He thinks roadkill is good eatin'

I always have these grand imaginings. Adam says that my life is like that part in (500) Days of Summer where the audience sees the split-screen of Tom's Expectation next to his Reality and it's so awful because his Expectation is SO HIGH and Reality is. so. average.

Speaking of that movie, who's title I don't feel like typing out again, have you ever seen a movie so brilliant, that while you are watching it you alternate between wanting to call everyone you know to demand that they see it and feeling like your life is a worthless mess because you could never create anything so beautiful? That is how I felt when I watched that movie. And then it ended. And the ending was so awful, so lame, so cheap, so insipid... that I finally understood why my dad is always talking about the third act of movies and why they're so important. The ending actually offended me. I was actually offended. Because of the ending, and only the ending, I would recommend that you spend your $12.50 on a different movie. Or, at the very least, that you leave the theatre at the 1 hour 20 minute mark. I mean it.

So anyway, I have these grand imaginings and I'm frequently disappointed. (Right, I should probably work on lowering my expectations. But the fantasy is so fun.) I really thought I would write a big beautiful heartwarming post about my husband's return from the JMT, and my experience of not being able to see him or talk to him for twenty-one days. You know, I'd write all about how much better my life is when he's around, yet how much I learned about myself from being on my own for nearly a month, blah blah blah. Because it's a kind of a big deal to be out of communication with your spouse for twenty-one days.

But I didn't write a thing. This post was written eight days after his return. Eight! Because when he came home and it was time to write the big heartwarming post, I just couldn't tear myself away from him long enough to write. And then? When I finally could tear myself away? By then he was leaving dirty socks on the floor again, so... you know.

I'm kidding. He is leaving his socks on the floor, but it's also so wonderful to have him home, even with the dirty socks, that sometimes I just sit and stare at him, like when he's in the middle of doing something or whatever, and I just can't believe he's sitting there. Home. Mere inches away.

That's usually when I reach out and pinch him, really hard. And then he gets upset and yells about how violent I've become. But at least he's home.

I didn't take any photos the night he came back, and I only took a few the next day. I was too busy staring at him with awe and adoration to take a lot of photos. But, and aren't you lucky, I did take photos of his scary weight loss and his mountain man beard:

Escada is doing a whole Mountain Man look this fall. Just wait.

I'd like to point out that in this photo, Mike is wearing the jeans that were giving him muffin-top the day he left for his trip. If you ever want to lose fifteen pounds in three weeks, all you have to do is hike 15-20 miles every day while wearing a fifty-pound backpack. It's way better than that maple-syrup-lemon-pepper diet. (We're not going to comment on the farmer's tan though, ok?) (Update: Mike has corrected me. It's a hiker's tan. My sincere apologies.) (Weirdo.)

We spent his first day home whispering over our pillows, catching up on life over the last three weeks, going through the photos from his trip and eating. A lot. I cooked for him and fussed over him and rubbed his feet, he read all my blog posts and exclaimed over my new cooking skillz, and then he took me to see District 9 which was brilliant. Loved it. LOVED it. Including the third act. GO SEE IT.

Also that day? We shaved off The Beard. Which we really should have named, by the way. That thing had developed it's own personality.

The first cut

A young Colonel Sanders.

If Michael were a Civil War reenacter.
Or a hipster.

P.S. Look closely at his shoulders. Do you see the red scabs on both shoulders? In the shapes of backpack straps? Gnarly.


Thursday, September 03, 2009

Splish, splash, I was takin' a bath, all alone on Saturday night!*

August 21, 2009. It was a bad day. The weather sweltered. I couldn't use my AC. I worked all day. I sweat all day. I missed Mike all day. Luckily for me, Theo is a good kisser.

Sweat-Soaked Self-Portrait With Dog Tongue - 8/21/09

That's Valentine in the background, nibbling my ear.

August 22 was a great day. I got a lot done, I was giddy knowing Mike would be home the very next day, and I had friends over for dinner. Then? THEN I COOKED. And you know what? I didn't set anything on fire. Not a thing! I mean, the stove, yes. But that's supposed to be on fire. I didn't set anything else on fire. I harvested my basil plants and made fresh pesto and served it with pretty little noodles, roasted chicken seasoned with thyme and oregano from my herb garden, ricotta and asiago cheese, and then, just for fun, I topped it off with Cherokee Purple tomatoes from our CSA. I completely invented the recipe, just threw things together as they seemed to fit, and it was delicious. I was so thoroughly impressed with myself that I took this photo:

I made that garlic bread, too. I used a gorgeous french loaf that Josie and Johnny brought over, drenched it in olive oil, threw on some chopped garlic and doused everything with a hearty helping of shredded asiago. Heaven in my mouth. Seriously.

And this was the early morning of August 23. The very early morning. The very, very early morning. In fact, we were still awake from the day before! And? We're sweating! Because it's sweaty! At 3 a.m.! (Though The Valley may thoroughly fry it's residents all day, AT LEAST IT COOLS DOWN AT NIGHT.)

We spent this evening early morning on my fire escape, talking ab --

Hold on. I've got to interrupt myself for a minute.

As a Valley Girl growing up in Southern California, whenever I fantasized about living in New York City, I imagined myself spending a lot of time on my fire escape. I imagined that I would sit out there and read. I would sit out there and sketch. Sometimes I'd sit on my imaginary fire escape and compose poetry, play my lute, and have long, impassioned dialogues with the handsome Puerto Rican boy who lived across the alley. It would be grand and romantic, this fire escape of mine.

And then I moved to New York and realized that fire escapes are filthy, cramped and difficult to get on and off of.

Still, in the very early morning hours of August 23rd, Adam, Joe and I sat on my fire escape drinking red wine, talking about life and friendship, romance and babies and it was every bit as lovely as I could have imagined.

Joe breaks glasses when he drinks. It's why we love him.
And why we switched to plastic.

*You're all, what? I know. Totally.

Wednesday, September 02, 2009

Let us begin a game of catch-up, shall we?

Self Portrait on Doorknob While Pooping

I kid. I kid. I'm just sitting on the toilet seat. But I have some family members who would be REALLY offended if they saw this, regardless.


Boutonniere in Vintage Ashtray

The boutonniere is the one my mother bought Michael to wear on our wedding day on April 16, 2006. The ashtray, circa 1950-ish, belonged to my beloved great-aunt Suzanne. Who deserves a blog post. (I'm getting there.)


Tuesday, September 01, 2009

Goodbye, kid.

Taken seconds before he left, the Super Shuttle guy standing right in front of us, waiting to take John's bag and hurl it into the back of the van.

All week I worried over whether or not he was having a fun time. I worried about whether or not he was too hot while he slept, if I was feeding him enough and if he liked my cooking. I worried over whether or not I listened well while he spoke. I worried if he was disappointed by how much I was working and leaving him on his own. Then I worried that he had more fun on his own than he did with me.

And I'm only saying all of this because I am starting to believe that it is perfectly normal to worry and that most people just don't talk about it as openly as I do. Or else they won't admit how much they worry. Right now I'm worried that you're judging me for being such a worrier.

My point is that when he hugged me goodbye, I knew right then that the week had meant as much to him as it did to me. He might have had a lot of aloof teenager moments while he was here, but when he hugged me goodbye, for a split second, he was two again. And he didn't want to let go.

Neither did I, baby. I love you forever. (That's a long time.)