The Eraser

I pick up albums generally on a whim. I go to the local record store and whatever is the cheapest and within my interests, I pick up.

This time, I picked up Thom Yorke's The Eraser and I can see why it received negative reviews when it first came out. This would be the very same reason why I enjoy it so: it makes you feel uncomfortable. I feel like Radiohead teeters on this edge of accessibility and the uncomfortable whereas Yorke's solo release is completely the territory of the unknown.

But that's a familiar space for me. Listening to Radiohead's more uncomfortable moments and The Eraser takes me back. Back to when I couldn't eat one of my favorite dishes, spaghetti, because seeing it brought all these images of raw meat in my head. And feeling so ashamed that I couldn't eat it, I wanted to hide in my bed and cry. Listening brings back those memories of being so on the verge of crying or shouting that my throat would grow hoarse as if in preparation.

They're not comfortable memories. But I'm glad someone goes down there. Lately, I feel like I've been trying to avoid that destination - perhaps why I've had so much difficulty writing recently. If I am to have a guide who can row me over those waters, perhaps Thom Yorke is the one to trust.

I have been avoiding absolutely anything that would take me back to those depths in fear that it will swallow me whole again. But I have to remember what those feelings have given me. I have to remember I once told a counselor that depression and anxiety have made me who I am and that I wouldn't give that up for anything.
  • Current Music: Skip Divided - Thom Yorke


I am thinking about those days when I stood out.

Not an everyday occurrence, those days when I walked out, determined to insist that my existence was one that mattered. I went out for an interview at a chain cafe - before the two jobs, before even the small retail job - in a dress I had sewn myself, fabric rayon from Hawaii that had snarling tigers printed on it. I walked over there, my pace quick and swift. My lips were bright red, hair floofy without any intention of straightening. I was surrounded by other applicants and I remember sitting down, feeling the gazes of everyone around me as if I had just escaped from an enclosure that had been erected to keep them safe from me. They were all dressed in hoodies and sneakers.

Another time, at a pizza restaurant that fed its employees bullshit. "We think out of the box." They acted as if creativity was somehow a necessity for working as a host or a waiter. It was my birthday, a perfect day for absurdity. It wasn't an interview. It was the interview to be interviewed, conducted with a group. I was dressed in a hand-made voile houndstooth skirt and surplus jacket, with a smarmy expression. And while I tend to do well when it comes to thinking on my feet and creating stories, I also can't hide my blatant disregard for bullshit.

That's what they wanted us to do, create stories. Because that has so much to do with serving pizza. We had to throw our shoes in a pile and pick one out randomly, then create a character out of that shoe. The women surrounding me all really enjoyed my stories and the character I created out of a boot. But I laughed at authority and I thought the entire thing was ridiculous. I know it could be read on my face.

I saw the glances though. From those surrounding me, from the supervisor conducting the group think tank. People trying to figure out just what the hell I was.

Those are the times I enjoy myself the most. When no one knows what to make of me.
  • Current Music: Trance Out - Asobi Seksu

Anime Expo, 2017

I'm trying to wrap my mind around how I'm going to order this overwhelming mass of insanity that I threw myself into for a post. It's difficult, especially since I just got back from L.A. and also because at one point, I recall being ping-ponged between people in the Exhibit Hall with little memory as to what happened before and after that.

It's probably been about ten years since I last went to Anime Expo. The amount of people who go have accrued by a ridiculous amount in that time. I remember being able to have personal space the last time I went. Now it's completely impossible, even in the Artist Alley. I felt sorry for cosplayers in more elaborate costumes and tried my best to walk carefully around them, as it would break my heart if someone crushed into what I had spent time and money on.

I'm not even really into anime anymore. Not any of the new shows, anyway. There were tons of costumes I saw where I didn't recognize what show it was from. When I was younger, even if I didn't like a show, I'd know where all the costumes came from.

So why go now, when I'm 31 and not obsessed with anime anymore? Why go when the last few anime shows I've watched are, at the youngest, 20 years old? I can't really express why I decided that I absolutely had to go this year. It wasn't about reconnecting with a younger me who didn't exist anymore. And while I did make an Anne Takamaki costume for the year that Persona 5 was released, that wasn't really the deciding factor either. I just got it in my head that I wanted to go.

And I had a lot of fun.

Being attacked by a T-Rex and attempts at socializationCollapse )
  • Current Music: Brighton Rock - Queen (IT'S YOUR KILLER SONG, BABY)

Costume Plans

Since I am in the realm of obsession with finishing up a costume, I figured what better subject to tackle than dream costumes! Only now am I realizing the horror of wearing a lined wool blazer at Anime Expo in LA's summer heat so I am trying not to think about that.

In the past seven years, I have made costumes based off of fictional characters. These have included (in chronological order) Princess Peach (when my whole family went as a Mario Party group to support my niece who was dressed as Princess Daisy, a costume I made for her), Elaine Marley (from Tales of Monkey Island), Reika Mishima (from RahXephon, made on the cheap, out of bed sheets and hand-dyed), Theda Bara (a botched Viki costume, see under the cut), Yukiko Amagi (from Persona 4), Misato Katsuragi (from Neon Genesis Evangelion), and Ann Takamaki (from Persona 5).

Suffice to say, the cosplay bug has bitten. There's nothing I love more than researching a costume and deciding on fabric. In fact, I'd love to remake my Reika costume and fiddle a bit more with my Misato jacket to make it just right. I also would probably like to remake the Misasto skirt of the dress, as sitting down in it makes me very uncomfortable. Yes. It's that short.

So here is a list of extremely feasible projects and dream projects.

The raw wall of chaosCollapse )
  • Current Music: Breaking Glass - David Bowie

Adventures in Sewing

In between my two jobs and a general feeling of malaise, I've been attempting to fix my Persona 5 Ann Takamaki costume. This is due to the fact that I will be testing my new found ability to stand crowds and go to Anime Expo this year. This would be the year to do it. If I see you other Persona 5 crowds out there, I will be crashing you. My sister will alter a stuffed animal for me too so I can have a Morgana in my Persona 5 bag.

In between all of this, I've been treating my vitamin D deficiency (which is probably causing the fatigue and malaise), which is apparently very common these days, and becoming proficient in the art of driving. When a family member asked me how my driving was going, I told them to call me Baby and I received a rather lengthy eye-roll. To reward myself for taking on this incredibly frightening task - which doesn't seem so frightening anymore, I actually really enjoy driving - I purchased a copy of David Bowie's Low which is probably his best album in a career of incredible albums. Don't even listen to the samples. Just buy it, play it, do nothing other than listen, and don't stop listening until it ends.

Anyway, seeing as I am finally feeling as though I can keep my eyes open in the morning, I figured it might be best to start getting back in the feel of writing on here. I still haven't written anything about Persona 5, which bothers me on a daily basis considering how much I absolutely love it (I relate greatly to Futaba and Yusuke; Morgana is probably my favorite character out of all of Persona). Nor have I written about any of the films I've seen, including Wonder Woman, which I went to with all of the female members of my immediate family!

But for today, I figured I would stay in the realm of what I have been working on, which is this experience of sewing Ann's costume and the no-good, terrible, horrible world of bad fabric choices.

The stretchy, shiny, knit horrorCollapse )
  • Current Music: Fairytale in the Supermarket - The Raincoats

Things I Have Discovered

1. That I only dance to Talking Heads, even while sitting.

2. That my parents, those old kooks, invited cult into my life at a very young age and supported every descent into the void. I kind of love the fact that I always have to wonder what they were thinking, taking me to see Cry Baby in theaters.

3. That I am willing to accept just about any creative work so long as it isn't boring.

4. That my "weirdo" music taste defines me in every best aspect and the opinions of others are not going to keep me from enjoying weirdo music.

5. That a picaresque aesthetic has always governed my stories. Today I came across a graphic novel titled "Fantasy Sports" and I realized I was drawn to it simply because the main character reminded me of my D in spirit: dressed in tattered rags, androgynous.

6. That accepting my lunacy has drawn more people to me than when I was rejecting that aspect of my personality. Now, I'm fairly certain that I am crazy 95% of the time.

7. That reciting of Montreal lyrics to people at work while in conversation creeps them out a little.

8. That no one will ever see the visions that litter my head, my own private cinema of illusions.

9. That I should always strive to be an "occasion of sin."

10. That if you open up to people, sometimes they'll do wonderful things for you, like play The Fiery Furnaces' Duplexes of the Dead in the break room.

11. That I'm getting too old for a lot of shit, but never dreaming.

Etc, etc, etc.

Also, rest is golden.
  • Current Music: Exit Only - White Reaper

On The Subject of Fictional Parents

From this thingie. I am full of birthday cake from yesterday and forgot to take Lactaid with it, so I am feeling quite ill. But also excited, because I just saw Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 - I loved Mantis. I related to her awkward social grace.

I haven't talked about M+I in a long time so here are ten questions about parents for all of them. Except D, anyway.

An MR16 and an Odd CoupleCollapse )
  • Current Music: Deceptacon - Le Tigre

2016 Films, Short Reviews

Apologies about the lack of content here, but all of my free time has been spent lately either working on certain writing projects, mastering the rules of the road, and playing Persona 5. The last one will hopefully lead to more content here.

But due to my work, this is one of the few times that I've watched blockbuster films that I would normally never have had any interest in. I've also been able to catch up with films I wanted to see - something that is endless in pursuit, but in the matter of 2016, obtainable at best. So here are some very short reviews on the films I've seen from 2016. I would love to write longer posts on 20th Century Women and Kubo and the Two Strings - if you're guessing because I'm biased in their corners, then you would be correct. This isn't everything from 2016. I still have Lion, Hidden Figures, Fences (I have it now!!), and Paterson to watch, and a few films I received for free as well. But this is what I've seen so far. And it's writing something on here which makes me happy.

Without further ado!

Short 2016 ReviewsCollapse )
  • Current Music: Gronlandic Edit - of Montreal
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