la Ketch

my life story

Sunday, October 29, 2006

on doing.

I’ve been trying to formulate this post about doing but I’m having trouble getting it into the right words. I actually posted something last week but I took it down because it seemed too hostile. It was a rant of sorts but I was afraid that people might somehow take it personally. Then Bog Face wrote to me and asked me if I had taken it down because she thought it was interesting. So I guess, Bog Face, this is for you.

I’ve been having trouble in social situations lately with this question:

What are you up to these days?

Or What are you doing these days?

Or the worst, Are you doing anything?

(Which means, Are you acting in anything?)

My answer to this questions these days is something like, “No, nothing really. Just working and hanging out, working on the Dog Run.” People have varying reactions to this and sometimes they will actually ask about the Dog Run because it’s so ridiculous and unusual and I’ll talk about it for a while because I could talk about it for hours. I try to make it funny and entertaining but it’s not anything most people are truly interested in learning about. I’m digressing though...

What I’m trying to examine is how I’ve become hyper aware lately of how much people rely on this topic of conversation. What are you DOING? Our existence is justified by what we do in life. I think this is probably an especially American thing. At least that’s what I’ve heard. We are a bit obsessed with what we do. I think there are times in all of our lives when we love this question, “What are you doing?” Because we have some exciting or wonderful news to share and there are other times we dread it because things are going badly or our lives just seem boring.

I think the struggle I’m having is that I’m really very much ok with not doing anything right now. It’s been sort of a goal of mine to drop unsatisfying projects and I’ve done that and I’m actually really enjoying my routine. Yes, I’m watching too much television and not reading enough. Yes, I’m drinking too much wine and not doing yoga enough. Still, I’m more relaxed I think and appreciating what I have more than ever before because I’ve made a conscious decision to slow down.

I ask people what they are up to all of the time. We all do. It’s routine. It’s a conversation starter. There’s nothing wrong with it. I usually genuinely want to know what my friends are up to, especially if I haven’t seen them in a while and I’d like to think that when they ask me what I’ve been doing that they really want to know. It’s not malicious. It’s just annoying me lately. I just feel like this talking about what we’re doing all of the time pulls us away from what’s going on in the moment.

I think I’ve been noticing this ironic thing lately that as artists, actors especially, we are always talking about being in the moment, wanting to be there, trying to be there but we so rarely are unless we are onstage. It’s a life of living in an state of anticipation and anxiety. It’s very difficult.

I feel that I’m getting better at answering the question with more confidence. What am I doing? I’m doing nothing. Nada. Not a fucking thing. You want to talk about my job? Didn’t think so, You want to talk about my dog? You’re just being polite. It’s fine. I think the anxiousness I feel comes from the desire to entertain people. I want to be exciting or inspiring to my friends. I just can’t spend my time anymore, doing things that make me unhappy just so that I can answer the question differently.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

America's Next Top Beagle

Eliott's "Best Shot"

Tuesday and Wednesday nights Dup has school and I'm home by myself with Eliott, aka "Baby E". Last night I had a mass of chores to do like picking up laundry, washing delicates, doing dishes, making myself dinner, putting laundry away, walking eliott, feeding eliott, etc. The whole while I was listening to music, which was a nice change. You see I've fallen into this pattern on Tuesday and Wednesday nights that consists of ordering take out, drinking half a bottle of wine and watching television until Dup gets home. It has to stop. I decided last night that on Tuesdays I would let myself watch TV from 8-10 because it's Gilmore Girls and Veronica Mars but Wednesday, no TV because it's America's Next Top Model and that show is the devil. Also, I decided not to stop by and get a bottle of wine on the way home from work last night. We didn't have any wine in the house and I thought, "that's good. I'll do yoga instead. It will feel better than drinking."

I finished my chores and I had just finished making my dinner. I rounded the corner into the living room where I had planned on reading the New Yorker as I ate and what do you think I found? Eliott was not only sitting there watching America's Next Top Model but he had actually cracked a beer and left it for me on the table. He had this adorable little look on his face like, "Melrose is such a bitch but she's the best, isn't she?"

Let's just say, I didn't do any yoga last night. The question is, how in the heck did he turn on the TV with those little paws of his? As Jerry Blank would say, "I guess we'll never know."

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Lu Lu Eightball by Emily Flake

( Click on comic for larger view)

Automatic Coffee Maker Update

I know you're all dying to know if I got up on time this morning and so here is my report.

I did not get up on time this morning.

However, the fact that there was coffee did boost my morale and I was even jokey with Dup and not super mean to him like usual.

Conclusion: Automatic coffee maker doesn't help me get up on time but does make me less grumpy about being late. $24 investment = totally worth it.

I'm now considering a contraption that turns all of the lights on super bright, plays, "GOOD DAY SUNSHINE" really loud and tilts the bed up so that I slide out of it onto the floor.

How much do you think that would run me?

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

i'm making coffee...

There was a commercial that was on in the early eighties where the wife is in bed sleeping and the husband is like, "Honey it's time to get up." and she just lies there with her eyes closed and says, "III'm maaaykiiiing cooffeeeee!" It was a commercial for an automatic coffee maker with a timer. Do you remember it? It used to be a sort of joke in our family growing up, one of the oft quoted sayings along with, "South to drop off MORON!" which is of course from "Mr. Mom". There were many other things we quoted to each other from the obvious movies and shows of the time but this was bandied about for a while, this making coffee thing. I don't remember the context in which it was used. Maybe something like, "you have to clean your room now." response: "IIII'm maaaykiiiing cooffeeeee." I remember my mom saying it a lot.

Anyway, I bought a coffee maker today with an automatic timer. The reason I bought it is that I became convinced this morning that if I had one I would be able to get up in the morning. I can not get up in the morning. It's always been a downfall of mine. I'm a super heavy sleeper and every morning is like the first time for me, it's own special mini opera of peeling myself out of my dreams and away from the mattress. Every morning I go through the possibility of quitting my job (i could get another one) or calling in sick (how long has it been?) and every morning my husband comes in and says things to me like, "You're going to be late," or "You have to get up," or my least favorite, "You'd better get up."

This morning I screamed at him, "You think I don't know that? I know I have to get up but I am unable to!"

You see my husband is chipper in the morning and if there is anything a heavy sleeper can't stand, it's a chipper person in the morning. Of course, I felt horrible afterwards and later I got to thinking that I have to break this pattern somehow. I have to start getting up earlier.

Dup gets up at 5:00AM to write his play before work. I get up at 6:30-6:45. In the 30 minutes I give myself to get ready I have to walk the dog (Dup walks him again later), take a shower, make the bed, get dressed and leave. I put my makeup on in the subway and I do my hair when I get to the office. I'm should leave the apt. at 7:15 to get to work by 8:00 but i always leave at 7:30 and I'm always 10 min late. It's not such a big deal but it stresses me out and it doesn't look good.

When I'm lying in bed trying to think of reasons to get up (being late doesn't work until I'm truly going to be very late) I always think to myself, "If only Dup would make me a cup of coffee, then maybe I could get up." I like to put things on him as much as possible, especially when I am in a grumpy mood. I always realize later that this is not really a reasonable request. He used to do this for me a while back when he got up to write but it's not really in the marital contract. It's hard enough for him to get his ass up out of bed at 5am, which I would never do, let alone make me a hot and caffeinated beverage on top of it.

So this coffee maker, will it do me a damned bit of good? III'm maaaykiing cooffeeee.

Stay tuned!


i'm very sorry. i've lost the bloggy feeling. it's temporary i think. i've really been enjoying fall but now it's like, ugh uh oh, here it comes, that frigid bitch - Winter.

I dread it, I dread it, I dread it.

I did plant some bulbs in the back yard last weekend, which was immensely satisfying. Just to have a backyard to work in, it's so fantastic. I have wanted it for so long and there I was digging in the dirt. It's full of rocks and clay but it's dirt. I can't tell you how much it helps me to know that those bulbs are out there. I like to picture them like a cross-section of the underground, down in their little holes. What on earth do you think are they doing down there?
Just waiting I guess.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Lu Lu Eightball by Emily Flake

(Click on Comic for Larger View)

Monday, October 02, 2006

Monsieur David Lynch


Mr. Lynch also stressed the importance of fearlessness. “Fear is like a tourniquet on the big tube of creative flow,” he said. And thanks to meditation, “negative things decrease,” he added. “You get more ideas. You catch them at a deeper level.”

tres interessant:

Mr. Lynch once forswore psychotherapy, fearing it might inhibit his creativity. Most things, as he sees it, are best left uninterrogated. “As soon as you put things in words, no one ever sees the film the same way,” he said at one point, when the line of questioning turned too specific. “And that’s what I hate, you know. Talking — it’s real dangerous.”

Sunday, October 01, 2006


Things I like: Listening to “The Sundays” on Sunday, sleeping past 11am, vodka tonics.

These are all things I haven’t done in a while, which I partook in this weekend. I’m listening to the Sundays now actually. It’s been raining all morning and now there’s this brilliant sun break in the clouds and all sorts of light streaming through the window. There was no one on the streets earlier but now there are all sorts of people walking by. They’re making a break for it.

The room where the computer is sits right on the street. Since we’re the ground floor apartment and the room is sunk down from the street level about two feet, you can really feel exposed to the outside when you sit in here. I don’t mind it so much and I like sitting in this room because it’s the only room in the apt. that gets fully sun drenched, unless you count the backyard. The problem with this room is that Eliott loves to sit in here with you when you’re on the computer and howl at anyone that walks by. He’s guarding. He becomes enraged when people dare to walk by our apartment and if they make the huge mistake of STOPPING to say, get groceries out of their car or light their cigarette, it’s all over. He has a full blown howling fit that could take us full minutes to calm him down from. Sometimes we have to just shut the blinds and take him out of the room all together.

It’s so confusing to him because he’s a beagle and it’s his job to guard the place and howl at the top of his lungs when anything slightly unusual takes place, at least that’s what his genetic map has convinced him of, and here we are picking him up and removing him from his post. Whenever he finishes with his howling he always sort of shakes it off a bit with this look about him that says, “Whew, I scared off another one.” He takes pride in his work and I feel badly for thwarting his instincts but the howl. It’s a sharp sound.

This morning Eliott and I are sitting in the front room on Sunday, listening to the Sundays with a sun break in the clouds. I’m typing a story into my blog and he’s howling at the passers by. I’ve decided to just let him do it. He really seems to be enjoying himself and no one is really bothered by it because the windows are shut and they only hear a muffled version. Let the beagle howl.

Last night I had a dream that I was flushing clothing down the toilet. I noticed that I had flushed my favorite belt and grabbed it and pulled it out and washed it in the sink. All I could think was, “now that’s really going to clog the toilet.”

On Friday we went and saw the “Long Winters” play at the Bowery Ballroom. It was a fun time and I really love some of the songs on the new album. I drank 3 vodka tonics and literally started falling asleep on my feet (which were killing me because I was wearing heels, bad idea) at about 1am. I leaned on Dup and begged him to take me home, which he did eventually, before the set was over and he was enjoying the songs quite a bit. I am once again eternally grateful to the Dup for taking me home. I just can’t stay up like that, especially after drinking 3 v&t’s and especially on a Friday night when I’ve been working all week. Still it was fun to go out and see a rock show and stay out late and sleep in.

Then last night I went out again, with my friend Rachel, to see my friend Amy perform at The Spiegel Tent which is set up at the Fulton Fish Market on the East River. It was a beautiful night and the Brooklyn Bridge is right there and the show was fantastic. It’s a variety circus type show but all of the performers were so talented. Not only did they each have some special freaky thing they could do but they were all truly, genuinely funny, including Amy who is just becoming a better performer every time I see her on stage. She is so beautiful and magnetic and hilarious on a pair of roller skates. It was inspiring to see this type of show because although the acts were all pretty classic: sword swallowing, body bending, trapeze, hula hoops, singing, etc., it’s time-old traditional entertainment, it was polished in a very modern way and the audience was LOVING IT (myself included). It was great to see so many people laughing like that and to be a part of it and think, well maybe it’s ok that we have such short attention spans and we just want to be entertained and forget about our lives for a while. Maybe that’s the way it’s always been.

One of the performers’ talent was to contort himself. He’s double jointed and he was twisting his body through a tennis racket (no strings). At one point he has to dislocate his shoulder to get it through. It’s totally gross and looks really weird and he’s all twisted around himself with his limbs sticking out in weird places but really funny because he’s got this long hair and a moustache and he’s wearing no shirt and these tight white tennis shorts and a sweat band. The whole time he’s doing this hilarious banter in his own funny English accent. So he gets himself in this position and turns out to the audience after a big silent pause and says, “I want to talk to you about Jesus.” That got the biggest laugh of the night. Then he says, “Jesus was born on Christmas and Died on Easter. Now what are the chances of that?” Then he says, “I wasn’t born on Christmas or Easter but when I was little I had a dream of what I wanted to be, "The Amazing Rubber Man" and I did it. Now if I can do this for a living, maybe you out there in the audience can think about some of the things that you’ve wanted to be in your life and consider that they are not quite as strange as you thought they were. Follow your dreams ladies and gentleman.”


Today was supposed to be a Dog Run Clean Up Day but It was cancelled due to rain. It’s a bummer that it’s not getting done but it has awarded me this day of extreme leisure. I’m sitting in my sweatpants, eating cereal at the computer at 1pm. MAYBE I’ll take a shower? Who knows. This weekend has been all about leisure and entertainment. It’s nice. It’s like life is saying, “la Ketch, take a load off. Don’t be so serious about it all the time. Stop trying to do so much.” After all when I was a little girl I had a dream of what I wanted to be, “Executive Assistant at a Multi Billion Dollar Hedge Fund.” It actually sounds weirder than anything I ever really thought I would become.

Follow your Dreams Ladies and Gentleman. Follow your dreams.