Saturday, December 11, 2010

stop judging me for being on YouTube while i write this paper, pt.2

i'm operating off of 3 hrs of sleep. i forgot how much writing a paper can take out of you. i'm physically awake but my brain is operating at minimum efficiency. smh. anywho! the eighties make it a lil better!

p.s. i find it cute that George Michael was "straight" in the eighties... haha. i kno there's a lot that went into that facade but i just find it funny in retrospect watching these videos. i saw him on Oprah with his partner a couple years ago, now i'm lookin at these videos where he got not one, but two women! stop it! rewind. play. "... never gonna dance again..."

Friday, December 10, 2010

speaking of shaking things up so i can stay alert and writing my paper: otherwise known as "uunnh aaahh, it ain't procrastination if it wakes up dese brain cells!"


paper # 1 (due tonight). i'm currently writing a paper about a poet with a crush on a musician. oh, the irony. i'm enjoying it/gonna enjoy it all day as long as i operate in the space of how funny/interesting it is/the potential for introspection but also a privileged view into the psyche of a fellow feeling-a-lot person.

paper #2 (it's complicated, final draft 12/20). uuurrrgghh. this one. *le sigh* hopefully i'll get to write about creative writing here too and place it in a context and write 15 pages? before Monday...

paper #3 (due next Thursday 12/16) must meet with professor Monday. must outline the hell out of what i want to talk about and focus my thesis as much as possible before Monday. must do paper like it's due Tuesday until bed, then act like it's due Wednesday fa real fa real cause it's due noon Thursday and I don't wanna rush. I want an A. hey, it's possible. I'm writing about James Baldwin!

paper #4 (due 12/21, in Spanish) i'm just going to finish this class the best i can. i don't usually make so many mistakes in language classes/it's more logistical than anything else... i won't be actively learning Spanish again probably until I just go to a Spanish speaking country, i'm tired of taking classes in Spanish, which is to say it's hard enough thinking in English at Columbia, which is to say I feel perpetually inadequate, which is to say i'm trippin, which is to say, "Get it done."

all in all, my fate of writing 40 pages (minimum) in final papers before the end of the semester is not too terrible. with the right attitude i might just maybe perhaps enjoy it!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

am i gonna have to learn how to tango?

i've been wondering this for a while, but it's becoming a real question. shoot.
this might have to be one of those things i learn how to do, so i'll stay sane/happy/active when i'm out in the real world. it looks like mad fun. slash, i'll say it. it's oh dee sexy.

i've been listening to the Gotan Project since last semester when one of my friends referred me to them. Bajofondo I found out abt in my Spanish class. either way, dope.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010


i realized that i'm a little extreme at times, in talks today.

i have to stop doing this thing where i pick one identity and decide that's all i've got, and all of my worth is there...
like it's the only thing i'm good at...
well, i think it happens subconsciously.

i was a student (high school), a student, a student, a student, learner, knowledge seeker, student, student, student
everything else second. many other things made me then
even more things make me now
but... since i've been in college, tho, duh, i'm still a student, i don't feel like it's *my* thing anymore. don't really make me special. regardless of whether it sounds corny or not, or even the fact that i just realized it
i wanna be special.

writing makes me feel special. i LOVE writing. i mean, i love learning but i LOVE writing.
so, since college, when i needed to feel powerful again, when i needed to fight for something to hold onto, something to be (because *student* is taken by all the other damn Columbia kids that are now more enthusiastic than me) i said writer, writer writer writer, how do i become a writer, oh, well i'm already a writer, what do writers do? oh, i'm not really like that and that's cool but nonetheless writer writer writer writer

guess who needs to stop limiting her notions of herself
this girl.

but, the first step is acknowledging that you have a problem. i intend to fix mine now that i know i'm being unfair to myself. i feel positive about that. good to have sounding boards, and good to have friends and good to have support and good to have positive, reaffirming reality checks

did i tell you
that i realized this weekend
that i'm a loving person?
when did that happen?
'cause it's not just me noticing it
it's like playing out in my actions & stuff, and people notice it
i've even been told                                                                                           i love hard... 
yeah, but that's nice. and it's true. 
and i'm starting to realize just how many things i do out of love,
things that come automatically,
that just seem right
i always do best when i follow my instincts and don't question/obsess over thangs 
whether it's loving people, what i do/organizations, what i'm learning, music, places, people, etc
hrrmmm... lately, remembering me. how do i love me hard?
by doing all that i can for my present and ESP during finals, future self. 
whether that's school work, addressing misconceptions/perceptions, reconciling & reviewing the past, acknowledging and changing damaging behaviors or ways of thinking, smiling, pushing through, writing, listing, friend time, crying, stuff.

it's all good. 

random rationale (i found in my notepad for class) for why i'll probably end up with a musician (or whatever)

haha. i'm not completely invested in that outcome btdubbs.

but it goes like this:

i assume a musician knows
time      timing      finesse     feeling into action     letting go
pressure     control     patience     action out of feeling     seeking and finding     digging into (it)
what sounds right/what doesn't     discipline     when & where he enters & exits     climbing out of (it) or huh?
support(harmony)     stepping front & center(melody)     moving     stopping     arrangements
                                              heart and soul and spirit and black things.

... and this is what my notebooks look like, with the occasional scribblings of notes for class.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

real talk.

Jessica, you actually don't have to be perfect. You just have to produce. Something. Get this work done!

Sunday, December 5, 2010

so, i have laryngitis

well, i think i do. either way, i'm losing my voice.

which is particularly interesting bc i just had a conversation with my friend Friday night/Saturday morning abt the way i feel abt my voice.

he was teaching me a Buddhist chant. and from what i understand, an important part of chanting is listening to and focusing on your own voice, its rhythm and vibrations and while we were chanting i began to feel very uncomfortable. for two reasons that i can think of, one being that i'm not ready to make definitive choices abt Christianity vs. Buddhism and i felt like i was engaging in something sacred but not with my whole heart. but the reason related to laryngitis...

in the middle of the five min we chose to chant, i stopped, my legs cross legged, i dropped my hands, i sat there feeling very lost and unsure of my voice. i moved to the side after abt a min and folded my legs into my chest. apparently, i looked traumatized. haha. but yeah...

reason #2 -- i was largely uncomfortable bc i felt like my voice was too small. it literally didn't feel/sound big enough to me. if i could think of a color to describe it, it would be flat. and after we talked abt it i realized that why i feel like my voice was too small  is bc i don't feel heard, when it comes to my relationship with/issues within my family and lately, a couple of men/friends. gah. so yeah.

but now, i've literally had to speak in hoarse-speak and whispers for today and yesterday, and as corny as it may sound, i appreciate the importance of having a voice, of being able to speak--as a physical reality but also as a writer/an artist. so yeah.

and my voice is not as small as i fear it is. i think i just need to give it more care in the way that now, i need to drink a lot of fluids, put my "COUGH DROP"  brand of cough drops in hot, steaming water with Earl Grey tea (well, just bc i like Earl Grey & spelling "grey" with an "e") and rest my voice... when it comes to producing pieces of writing, i need to pay more attention to my work, to take out the time to do what needs to be done so that on a very fundamental level i appreciate the fact that i can speak, that i have something to say, that i have a distinctive voice, but also so that i can share it and get stronger and build dialogue with others, learn even more, write even more, and make life all... richer & stuff :j

so. thank you, laryngitis & life, with all your symbolism and room for reflection. holler holler. (though i can't right now. haha.)


I'm also terribly aware that while laryngitic (no, it's not a word, but go with it)
i can't sing :( 
i like to sing! i LOVE music. 
i don't get to have the same experience now.
also... i can kinda sing a little bit, so it sucks to lose that manifestation of my voice as well. 
i don't usually know what to do with singing, aside from enjoying singing alone, tho i think i'd like to do it more as a means of expression. it just opens a whole 'nother world, and lens through which i'd see the world, that i think i have been avoiding. largely, bc writing comes first and i've even had trouble giving that as much of me as i'd really like to, bc it's really hard to devote myself while also in school. i don't always have the headspace, the time, the energy... the discipline to do more than blog, journal and list... i only really poem for class. so yeah. 

also.also. and and. i haven't really spoken up that much in classes this semester, for various reasons but this losing of my voice is making me think about that too. but in that same vein, i've spoken a lot in my extracurricular commitments. i am proud of vocalizing what's important and creating productive dialogue in that way. 

moral of the post: having a voice is a blessing. and i'm glad that i am seeing this more clearly practically/physical (with regards to being able-bodied), emotionally, symbolically, artistically, etcetera etcetera. it's okay to want to be heard, and to express yourself. and the more i grow i realize it's a necessity for me as a person, a writer, a friend, a daughter, a sister, a granddaughter, a member of an organization, a student, a participant in discussion, etcetera etcetera.