2018-10-06 Hell Yeah, That’s My Jam

I’ve seen some good concerts in my day. I’ve also been to some seriously crappy ones and some take-or-leave-it gigs. Last night was one of the better ones. My friend Leah and I took a little road trip to Lincoln to see Fall Out Boy at the arena downtown. It was a great time.

It was a good reminder how much I dig live music. First off, I’m not a seeker of new music, I often leave it to fate to serve up something awesome I’ve not heard before. The “pre-game” show featured a group called Machine Gun Kelly and it’s no surprise I hadn’t heard of them before, but they were good. As I sat through the songs at the end of their set (we arrived about halfway through that), I could feel the beat of the bass reverberating inside of me and was all like “hell yeah!”. That’s the stuff. As a poet you would think I would have better words to describe how it made me feel, but “hell yeah”, pretty much sums it up the best.

It’s something special when you can feel connected to music you have never heard before and just be moved by it. I would totally spend money on their tunes. It kinda makes me regret missing the opening act, I think there was one, but we were having dinner downtown and it took for-ever.

In any case, MGK was a great primer for the sick FOB jams. They played a good mix of old stuff and new and since they’ve been fans of mine for so long, I knew just about every song. The typical concert accompaniments, lights, screens, fire, smoke, etc were good and not overdone. It was just the right amount of flair to not distract too much from the songs or artists. Much better than the shit-show we saw at the Pumpkins concert where I was disturbed by the creepy video going on behind the stage.

The band and the songs didn’t disappoint either. It’s actually not tough to do with such great music. Song after song that elicit memories and feelings. Though we were fairly high in the arena, we were still on our feet rocking out. We were in the front row of our section and I’m sure it pissed people off behind us when we stood up, but I was channeling my boyfriends on stage in “not giving a fuck”. I can’t remember what song it was, but they had vid behind one of the songs which was entirely compose of clips from film and tv and even video games where someone was giving someone else the finger. It was awesome. And then all of a sudden there it was again, that “hell yeah” coursing through my veins.

Unlike most concerts I’ve been to, the lead singer was not the talkative one during the show. It was the guy who is the bass guitarist. I think that’s what his role is, you think I would know since he’s been writing songs for me since like 2008.

His main message to the crowd was that “you, each individual, is worthy” and can do whatever they want. He shared a bit of history about the band in being rejected by studios and labels over 20 times before some company took a chance on them. You can read the outcome in the almighty Wiki. He also randomly bought people beers and called People out of the auduence to come jam out by the stage. That was cool. The lead singer, by contrast, never said anything. Apparently the two of them are the originators of the band and there have been change ups of the other band members over time. The Wiki would know more about that too. I’m not very good at random music facts I guess. I just know what I like.

Fall Out Boy is definitely in my top ten. If there was any question, yesterday sealed that deal. Lincoln was great too. We got lucky with parking and had a good dinner (“hell yeah” I had a cheeseburger). Getting out of town after was even not as bad as expected. 👍🏻 Despite arriving home just after midnight, I was too amped up to fall asleep until some time in the 1 o’clock hour. That made for a short night.. 4.5 hours – ouch!

No rest for the wicked I guess. Today I have Saturday full of adulting which started at 6:45 when I had to get up with Z and take her to the school for ACT testing today. That meant I was at the gym early for cardio which is good because mid-morning I’m headed to Jim’s because we are going to pick out carpet for the house. Fun fun. I find it strange that I’ve made it this far in life and have never had to pick out carpet? 🤷‍♀️

Anyway. That’s it for this SugarCookie today. The weekend is waiting. 😘

Thank You, More Please,

~Miss SugarCookie

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2018-10-05 Bandwagon’s Full, Please Catch Another

I’m nearing the end of this cardio set and I’ve spent almost the entire hour writing down (typing in) brilliant lines from random Fall Out Boy songs coming up in this morning’s Shuffle. Today it’s all FOB cuz I’m preparing myself for the concert tonight. It will be total immersion all day today and Hopefully I’ll be more in the mood for a quick little road trip. Why on earth they would come all this way to see me and then NOT show up in my city. Seems like poor planning. I should talk to their manager about that. 😜

It’s nice to listen to the complete collection from an artist because then you start to detect their themes and, if you listen chronologically, the story arc of their inspiration. Is it a fine design of an artists mind or just a product of their honesty? The world may never know.

I find myself skipping over all the songs that sound like love songs. Any “me and you” song is not what I’m really after. I’m not into that beat. I’m more interested in the tormented artist, the life gone wrong success story, the one where they tell the truth. It’s the “Hum Hallelujah” and “Thriller” that gets to me, moves my mind to places it likes to sink and swim in. Add a little bit of “Wilson (Expensive Mustakes)”, don’t give a fuck what you think attitude, and I’m in Love.

I’m listening on shuffle cuz ordering things chronologically feels like it might be too much work. After all, I still have other things I have to do. Sure it would be nice to sit all day with my music library creating master playlists for the future me, but I’m too busy writing postcards to the future me, addressing them all to house numbers in ghost towns.

“We keep the beat with your blistered feet

We bullet the words at the mockingbirds singing

Slept through the weekend and dreaming

Of sinking with the melody of the cliffs of eternity

Got postcards from my former selves saying, “How you been?””

Fall In and then Fall Out, Boy.

~Miss SugarCookie

2018-08-21 It’s Not Even Halloween Yet…

And I’m already Smashing Pumpkins. (Ok, that should probably be past tense now since the concert was last night but whatev). William came to town to see me and decided to put on a show for the masses who are old enough to remember the Siamese Dreams Of their youth. I gave him the green light on that like 20 years ago but so much time has passed that I’ve truly forgotten how madly in love with me he was. Ahhh, but those were the days. Am I right?!

I guess I also never realized how strange he was. That dude is weird. Must be nice to be that way AND despite that have enough talent to carry on for so long. I just hope in 25 years after my fame has come and gone I can still sit on stage for like three hours and pull in that kind of cash. I can see him getting low with the dough and nudging his band buddies saying “hey guys, we should tour.” And just like that.. Waaa-laaa.. more 💵💰🤑❗️

The show was way too long for my taste and I enjoy the music he wrote for me but the rest of it I could have done without. And what’s with all the super strange video playing behind the band? That was weird squared. Some would call it art but I would never stand in front of a slow-motion weeping Marilyn Monroe with glitter eye shadow and black tears reaching up to a creepy-red robed religious statue for 2 hours in a museum so I certainly don’t want to do it during a concert. Just play the damn songs already.

At the beginning of the concert everyone was standing.. they opened with a few great tunes. Then it waned in the middle and got depressing and everyone sat down (thank the Universe). Of course they wait until the end to play the biggest hits. Once I heard “Today”, I was ready to jet. F the back stage pass he sent me back in March, I’d seen enough. As Jim and I were exciting the event center, they came on with “The World Is a Vampire”. I looked at Jim and said, “this is a good one too. Let’s get outta here”.

Today I might send William a message letting him know that if he really wants to see me, he’ll need to arrange a more intimate setting. Or maybe I won’t. Best to let those Siamese Dreams die in the past where they belong. Goodness knows we don’t need it when melancholy and the Infinute sadness will live on forever.

Rock On! 🤘

~Miss SugarCookie

2018-06-04 List Of Ten Things…

… to do when you fall asleep at 9PM and wake up before the butt crack of dawn:

1. Open the curtains and windows cuz it’s a beautiful day.

2. Realize the sunrise is amazing and put on sweatpants to stand in your driveway to take some pics.

3. Decide better shots are waiting at the top of the hill and get in your car and drive.

4. Take some great snaps of a pink cloud filled sky from your car while stopped at stoplights.

5. Go to Wal-mart cuz you are out of oatmeal and cilantro and you’re in pajamas already so you’ll fit right in.

6. Get in your car and drive home cuz the sunrise is finished and you’re so over it.

7. Put your groceries away.

8. Change out the filter in your water pitcher.

9. Check Sunday stats in your AWS environment and update the customer metrics spreaadsheet.

10. Hit the Gym!

That’s been my day so far.. and it’s just now only 7:30am!

I’ve got other lists if you are interested. Just ask me. 😜

Getting to the gym early and some ass-hat is on my machine. Not only am I on a different machine, but I forgot my water and that bites. On the bright side, the tunes in my ear are brilliant so far. Right now it’s “The Fear” by Lily Allen. A classic. She was pretty much a one album Wonder, but I still dig when those tunes come up in the shuffle.

Sprinkle in a little Cake and some Imagine Dragons and “Walaa” … Magic!

And just about the time I think it can’t get better, I realize I’m playing one of my favorite gym mix playlists. No wonder. It’s not the Universe that’s magic, it’s just me and another one of my lists.

It’s Monday again and I’m on this kick where I choose some area to focus on and set a goal for the week. This week it’s got to be food and diet, and crossing not one, not two, but 5 things off my June list. Since I’m traveling about half of this month, I’ve got a limited amount of time to work with, and a seemingly never ending list of “stuff” that needs to get done.

On the food thing, I’m instituting a list of restrictions and a few other “rules”. I’m not going all cray-cray with it, like starting that Whole 30 nonsense again (yet). I’m going to see how I do with just a few steps in that general direction first.

1. Gluten free. Yeah… no bread. Bread makes you fat.

2. No added sugars (with a few realistic exceptions). Sugar makes you fat.

3. Minimize dairy.. just a reasonable amount of cheese.

4. Drinking at least 120 oz water every day.

5. Fasting from 8pm till 11am each day

I think that’s enough for now. We’ll see what turns out to be the hardest part.

On the monthly goals list I’m planning to check off the following:

1. Get my W4 changed.

2. Order my summer school books.

3. Get the recall maintenance on my car scheduled/done.

4. Use my Recyclebank points before they go away forever (hey that’s today).

5. Get tomato/pepper cages and get them put in.

Ok, I think that’s enough lists for one day/week. It’s time to stop planning and start crossing that shit off.

Making Monday My Bitch!

~Miss SugarCookie

2018-04-24 Achtung Baby

I put my iPhone on master shuffle to see what the Universe thinks I should be inspired by. “Even Better than the Real Thing” by U2 apparently.

Hey.. isn’t that song like 30 years old? There’s nothing like THAT coming up in the shuffle of 1000+ songs I have on my personal electronic pocket computer in the year 2018. It doesn’t make me feel old, though, just a reminds me of an earlier time. The only thing even better that might be the actual “Real Thing”. 😜

Seriously though.. that song was one that my dear un-departed ex-husband put on a mixtape he made for me in the early days of our courting. It was my introduction to U2 and I’ve been a fan ever since. (Of U2, not my ex).

***

I stopped typing for a little bit there to think about life, and just like that I’ve blown right past the BNL (Bare Naked Ladies) and landed on Blue October. I guess that’s how life goes sometimes. How on earth did I miss all those years going by and land in 2008? It’s not a typo, 2008 was the year of Blue October and the event that I would later call my own personal “Punctuated Equilibrium”.

If that wasn’t enough to convince me that the Universe is a “Real Thing” (with a cosmic sense of humor), the next selection is “Song for the Road” by David Ford. The one and only and there’s no other connection for reference to my Simply Vera Era that is stronger than that (except Mr. A to the Z). The first time I heard it, we were riding in his black Jeep along 144th street to somewhere.. I don’t remember where. Where isn’t important when the song is so good it makes you cry. Of course he was playing it and thinking about another girl. His “one that got away”. I didn’t even know her, but I wasn’t a fan. Her hair was more red than mine and that is all I knew.

I wasn’t even a book in his life between two iconic book ends, I was merely a chapter. Thin pages with a few words about tennis and tv shows, good food and great conversation. And that not-meant-to-be podcast “for or against”. It had some clever name I don’t recall. Do you remember that?

The girl he was with after me was someone my closest friends and I nicknamed “The Wildcard”. She was some shade of crazy I never knew existed and I don’t think I’ll ever know if it was love that made her crazy or if she was like Lady Gaga and “Born that way”. It’s ok though, I let go of caring about that years ago.

I actually saw her at a funeral for the mom/aunt of a pair of mutual friends of ours in 2016. I didn’t recognize The Wildcard right away that day because of her long blonde hair, which I think was her natural color. Her hair was black when I met her and she died it clown red to try and become a closer proximation to what SV was looking for. I’d never dye my hair for any man. I might take motorcycle lessons and tennis lessons and force myself into awkward social situations but my hair is sacred.

Well well, what do you know – An appearance by MRAZ.. how appropriate. I wonder if the Universe is standing behind me on this elliptical machine and reading what I’m writing. No, that’s too physical. When you are omnipresent, you don’t have to stoop to such levels. The song in play right now is “Life is Wonderdul”. It’s all about the contrast between opposing things and the idea that we can’t truly know one thing without the other.

Thinking about this makes me happy. It’s explaining away all the bad things. We wouldn’t truly know sound without silence, we would not know the warmth of the sun without the long cold winter. I wouldn’t recognize the sunrise if there was no dark of night. I can look back at my life and all the bad things are softer in the light of this philosophy. The song is brilliant. “It takes a toll to make you care”. My dues have been paid and I’m ready to collect.

Coming up to the end of my time here now and I am not surprised that the Universe has done it again. For its final play of the set, we have Fall Out Boy singing “Thnks fr th Mmrs”.

“Thanks for the Memories?”. How appropriate. There is a Fall Out Boy CD that reminds me of another time in my life, but the cannon of their music has extended beyond that and now I can’t help but just enjoy it as one of my favorite groups. They actually called me up earlier this year and asked me to come to their show in Lincoln this fall. To which I replied “I would be happy to”.  I will be happy too.

Times Up. Rewind. Replay.
Achtung Baby,
~Miss SugarCookie

2018-03-01 Part 3 – The Hangover

When we last left our fateful hero’s, they were staring down at the bottom of a bottle of wine, with empty glasses in hand. Their fingers were on the keyboard possitioned and ready for brilliance to flow as easily from them as the cheap wine that had just played out a most impressive disappearing act.

But the words were elusive. As it turns out, at least in this case, drunk texting is easier than poetry. Channeling Mayer again and taking my own advice, I said what I needed to say. No regrets right?!

There was a brief exchange and then, according to my FitBit, I was in bed asleep by 10:08PM. Yes.. my life is that exciting.

I was urged awake l just after midnight by a buzz on my wrist frim that very same FitBit, letting me know I was getting a call. It was HL. Knowing that being awake at that time meant an inilabulity to fall back asleep, I promptly returned his call.

My head hurt so I walked about my house getting water and OTC meds for that as I engaged him in conversation. He had just arrived home from a night out drinking with a friend. Way less lame than my drinking alone sitting in my office with only my cat and my laptop to keep me company.

It had been a while since we talked so we had a brief catch up session. I recounted the circumstances and events surrounding the end of my relationship with Simon. He filled me in with details about a new girl he’s seeing. It’s not a competition, but my story was more entertaining than his. It stands to reason though, I’ve had a loner time to find humor in mine and everyone knows the ends of relationships are way more interesting than beginnings.

We talked for maybe an hour or so. I’m not really sure because I couldn’t sleep after that and got up and was up for a while. I humored my left brain by making a few lists on my new white board (yes, I just could not resist). My right brain was still stumped by the problem it’s been struggling with.

This is, specifically, how to write a poem about the idea I had a few days ago about that Violent Femmes song, “Outside the Palace”. If you are playing along, this was explained in Part 2.

Here’s a fun fact… I’m supposed to avoid cliche phrases, metaphors, and overused topics in my writing. Really? Really.

At residency I learned a ton of things and one of those things, although seemingly not a big deal, is quite a discussion. It has to do with using things that are overused and therefore considered cliche. If you subscribe to this rule you would not ever use the following in any writing: The heart, Soul, sun moon, flowers, mothers, fathers, any sort of weather, the ocean…. Theres way more, but you get the idea. I will probably stumble upon them sometime in the future by way of some constructive criticism because I employ these in my writing often.

I may be repeating myself , from days or weeks ago, and if so I apologize in advance.

One of the mentors at Residency actually said in workshop in response to another student’s work, which made a reference to the moon.. “Don’t ever do that. EVER”. She (the faculty) was very emphatic about her point and pontificated about it for a a few minutes. Later that day the girl who was subject to that criticism and I laughed about it over a glass of wine. But apparently it struck a chord with me because here I am 2 months later and still thinking about it.

Counter to that was another faculty member who actually gave a lecture about the use of “flowers” among other things in writing and he argued that there was still a place for it, in some cases. I swear over half of my poetry is about broken hearts, flowers, and philosophy of life and I really appreciated that lecture. It felt like some sort of validation. Even if the result is juvenile and will not be taken seriously. If I am not writing what I think and feel then why am I writing?! It brings up a good question, which is “Who am I writing for?”

The faculty member who gave that lecture is now my mentor for this semester. I have not brought up this subject yet in our correspondence, because there has not been a need and I have somewhat avoided submitting anything that would be a blatant direct violation of the “cliche rule”. Haven’t I? Maybe. Probably not. Again, half of my poems use some common metaphor or overused phrase so it is highly likely something like that was in what I’ve submitted. Who cares anyway, this is not really my point. What was my point again?

Oh yeah, the song.. which contains, in its chorus both the moonlight and the dawn.

The question that came to my mind yesterday, which is why the cliche topic is on the tip of my brain, was how is a person to distinguish the moonlight from the dawn. And how can I ever hope to fashion a poem from this thought when I have to invoke both the moon and the sunrise? How is one supposed to talk about those two things without actually mentioning them?

Am I supposed to find something else that equates to the moon? Some other celestial body that gives off light but is not the moon. The sun is off limits, the stars are off limits, and the other planets don’t emit light. You know what else does not give off light? EVERYTHING!! If I said “light bulb” well, that just doesn’t do my feelings justice. Not enough weight and it makes people think of ideas not some mysterious, shining orb in the sky. Seriously.

I tried “Yin” as a substitute. I guess that’s ok, but it is kind of obscure and people might not get it. Even if I figured that out, the next problem is right behind it… the dawn. Even tougher. Whatever.

So I might have to give up on that one which is kind of a shame but it’s not like there are 10 more right behind begging to be written.

I think being up in the middle of the night, drinking water and milling about my house actually saved me from having a hangover this morning. Thanks HL!

He urged me to not give up on Bumble, but I’m fairly certain that’s the right thing to do now. He suggested that I widen my net by also being on match and eharmony and also to not take any of it too seriously. That last bit is where I think my problem is. I can’t seem to help the daydreams and fantasies.

It’s just part of my nature. And why would I want to change that? Who am I living this life for anyway? Just like that question about my writing.. the answer is me. So I shouldn’t really worry too much about writing about the moonlight because the rules only apply if you care what other people think.

Perhaps I should give that poem another try.

But first.. time go go make some $$$. It’s the first of the month and First National and Capital One are knocking on my door.

Covered in Moonlight,

~Miss SugarCookie

2018-02-24 Look Who Just Showed Up

Procrastination

From deep within a three week slumber
With first a slow and sleepy lumber
The monster moves, now cocks his head,
Instilling thoughts of sudden dread

And In the wake of Panic’s stare
I also wake, acutely aware
Long days and nights I’ve been remiss
Choosing something other than this.

***

I just couldn’t help myself there. That’s the nature of poetry sometimes. It just shows up and when it does, it’s like, BAM, you thought you might do something else with that little bit of time but (and with a finger wag) it say’s “you won’t”. Just add that to my growing left brain list bearing the title “Why Poetry”.

In this poem I’m referring, of course, of our beloved and sometimes long hibernating panic monster. A few days ago I was thinking about how I haven’t made much progress on revisions or reading my assigned materials. I really was thinking I had a few weeks to go before the next packet is due. Then I looked up the schedule. I was wrong.

One week.. and that was 2 days ago. So now I have 5 days to finish everything. I have made some progress but not enough to equate to 4 weeks of work. Where did those days/weeks go??!

So I guess that’s what I’m doing with my weekend. The good news is that I have no other plans so I should be able to dedicate a lot of time to what I need to do. That’s the positive side of having a slim social life right now.. not a lot of other things consuming my time. I think it will also help that there is a lull at work right now and literally nothing for me to do again. Aside from “running the household” I can focus solely on this and hopefully knock it out in just a few days.

Last night I did have a commitment to keep (happily) to go watch my friend Amy play in her band at a bar. The band is called Dirt House and they are picking up traction in the metro area. The singer is somewhat like Sara Bareilles and plays keyboard and she’s backed up by a very good pop/rock sound with guitar and drummer and then my dear friend on the violin. Superb! The bar was an OK venue but either their sound system was garbage or the guy running it was. I’m guessing the guy running it because when I wandered over to that area, the board was pretty sophisticated. He was acting as if he was paying attention and making constant adjustments yet oblivious to the negative feedback and also the drums being way to loud and drowning out the voice of the singer. Duh! At one point Amy’s husband came to stand beside me and he was looking at the sound guy like he was about to knock him out so I know it wasn’t just me.

Amy had a whole crew of people there to support her including her friends and family and I was really glad about that because I went alone and would not have known anyone there otherwise. As soon as I walked in, one of the women I met at her wedding urged me over to sit with them at their table and that was a huge relief. For the life of me I could not remember her name and felt incredibly stupid about that, but it worked out OK because it never came up, and I can ask Amy later without feeling so stupid.

Anyway.. I really wanted to get this in because I’ve not posted in a couple days and it might be a couple more before I am able to write again since I’ll be heads down in my MFA work. Now that the Panic Monster has officially arrived, I need to feed the beast. Oh the woes of procrastination.

I don’t know if the ideas in the Ted talk I watched about procrastination were original, but that’s where the Panic Monster originated for me. It’s a great talk and definitely worth 14 minutes of one’s life.. especially if you are among the mass majority of people who operate on principles of procrastination. Tim Urban: Inside the Mind of a Master Procrastinator

Time to Write (Something Else),
~Miss SugarCookie