I had been posting Sewick-family home movies to the Zelda and the Unibrows YouTube channel about once a week for a while, but stopped around the time of Joel Sewick's unexpected death. But there are more home movies, and I'm returning to posting them today in part because of the following.
I had a dream that Paul and I found videotapes from my old camcorder and on it was something shot at the Kingston house in 1988 or 1989, presumably by Joel. I am in my room and there's a call from the closet "Please! Please let me out!" and I open it and Andrew is hanging on the inside of the door by his shirt so that when it closes he is face-to-face with a demon mask (wearing oversized neon sunglasses). I cruelly close the door again while laughing. Later, I'm in my room and he is begging for food. "Ohh! I'm soo hungry!" A pan over to my desk shows food from McDonald's. I reluctantly select a Filet-o-Fish sandwich from the table and open the door to the closet slightly where he grabs it. I slam the door again and he is heard scarfing it. Cut to a wide shot with dreamy music playing and some Indian or South American kid comes out of the closet waving his hands around representing Andrew having been transformed by the sandwich. I try to grab him but he's see-through and slowly walks out of the room while waving his hands around and going "OoooOoooOO!" The video was done in exactly the style of the Sewick family home movies.
My mom's birthday was a few days ago, and Matt and I went out to the suburbs to take her out to dinner. We went out with my mom, Dave, and their friend from Toledo Dan to a Chinese restaurant at 14 and Dequindre that was really good, has spicy food, and has three kinds of fake meat! I don't remember the name of it. It's in a strip mall next to an Asian-mart and it has hot peppers over the door. Dan and Dave were obsessed with the lazy Susan in the middle of the table to a comical degree. Everyone was happy and the food was good. Back at the house, we had French-press coffee and Walmart cake, presumably made in China by Sam Walton. It was a wonderful time and everyone seemed happier than normal. Also, when right-wingisms came up, I didn't argue or cringe, but just laughed. At one point, driving to the restaurant, Dave said "OBAMANOMICS!" and I just found it funny.
My birthday is today. I'm 30 now. Paul and Anny treated me last night to seeing Rocky Horror Picture Show in Ann Arbor. I forgot about getting a costume together until it was pretty late, so I went as a half-assed Narrator. I guess my costume consisting mostly of a suit was good, because at the coffee shop Lab before the show two strangers asked to photograph me, one of whom in a silly posing session on the street with an expensive camera. His business associate told me that I had a striking profile and that I should model and charge $500 per day. But when I asked the photographer for $500, he laughed.
Paul (dressed as Brad Majors, asshole) and I were Rocky Horror virgins, but lied and made believe as though we had seen it before in order to avoid having to pass a dildo between out legs repeatedly on stage to music. Anny was part of the shadow cast, performing the film in silhouette in front of the screen. Anny played Rocky, and also performed as The Lips, including hula-hoopery. Now, half of my lifetime ago, I was into Rocky Horror and had all the different soundtracks, but I suppose my Weird Al obsession overshadowed it and I lost interest after a while. Seeing it this time was like seeing a whole new film. I got a lot of the humor that I was uncomfortable with or didn't get at all at 15, and the audience participation was actually fun, since I no longer had the responses memorized from the audience participation tape I once had. Although I was figuring out that I was gay at 15, the musical numbers surrounding the creation of Rocky were more than my psyche could then bear, but today I find them hilarious and relevant to my personal experience creating monsters in my laboratory. There were two comely gentlemen dressed as Rocky, whom I ogled in the style of a fat Southern gentleman in possession of opera glasses. Perhaps you had to be there. Here's broadway star Nick Adams as Rocky. I do declare!
One of the most surprising things about the evening was Paul enthusiastically dancing the Time Warp for the entire song. I have known him since 1988, and I never really thought I would see him enthusiastically dance to anything. And this after he discovered that he had missed a Beethoven festival earlier in the evening! Perhaps Anny's hula-hooping hypnotized him.
Today the weather is balmy and wonderful. I walked downtown and did a leg workout and then I walked around by myself enjoying the quiet of our deserted city. I also sat by the river:
This is what it looks like when I'm 30 and sitting behind The Renaissance Center
Josette called me today, too, and I'm happy to hear from her.
Livejournal is calling me back. I think I will write in here again. Blogging has moved on and Livejournal has not kept up. Now it's a barren place with little interaction, choked with ads for those who don't pay. It doesn't play nicely with web standards and I find it difficult to search.
That said, Livejournal feels cozy for writing about personal events in life, and it is formatted to allow long rants, instead of just Facebook or Twitter updates that are meaningless. Even if only a few close friends read this site, it is more meaningful than 300 glances elsewhere. It's also a good way to keep a record of what happens in one's life.
Paul stopped writing in his Livejournal for a while, but has returned to it and it has continued to improve with practice. He's currently completing a meme to write essays on a wide range of life-topics that is interesting to me and likely to his close friends, but otherwise won't be covered by "The Wall Street Journal". I'm happy that there's a place for this in the long-form online.
It's Fall and it's gorgeous out. I'm living in the "Bumblebee House" in Corktown, so-called because it is yellow and black on the exterior. Paul writes extensively about this house in his journal, but my history here so far is that I moved here in January 2010 with five other people. The roommate thing didn't work, and so most everyone moved out except for Matt and I. Meanwhile, Paul has been fixing up the house around us in a heroic battle against entropy.
I live with my boyfriend Matt, the veterinarian. He works all the time and, since it's an emergency clinic, often has an upside-down schedule. The schedule can be stressful for both of us, but it's also kind of exciting. Matt loves crazy music and is a nerd and a hottie, just like me! Matt has three pet ferrets that are adorable. I clean up their poop while he is at work. Even their poop is adorable. Did you know that ferrets have one of the highest ratios of poop production to body size of any mammal?
Meanwhile, I am a mostly unsuccessful artist of some variety. I work in music and film sometimes, and for my family sometimes, and partly mind the gap with money that was intended-for-university-but-I-went-to-a-much-cheaper-university-than-everyone-expected. I aspire to produce progressively more ambitious creative projects across all media, and assume that this will get me through life even though it's a terrible plan from the perspective of a career path. So far, this non-career plan has lead to paying gigs on accident half a dozen times in the last year or two. I should just tell people that I'm a consultant and maybe they'll stop asking me what I do for a living all the time. Today I made $50 selling stickers of the first and fourth amendments to the constitution and $14.45 from a snack vending machine that I bought on Craigslist.
I have a genetic condition known as Stargardt's Disease. It is symptomatically similar to age-onset macular degeneration, but its symptoms appear in youth. I was not diagnosed until I was halfway through my 20s, so there is some solace that it is progressing slowly in me. Despite that, the prognosis isn't very heartening. Someday, it is likely that I will be legally blind and only my peripheral vision will remain, and I may lose color vision before that. At its current state, I read slowly, magnify my computer screen and can't always immediately recognize faces or pick up on social cues because I'm simply not seeing the whole face or body at once. If you wink at me while I'm looking at your nose, I might miss it. I don't dwell on this much because I can still function normally today, it's something beyond my control, and there are millions of people in the world with worse problems. I am, however, glad that I like music and sound more than visual arts.
I've been vegetarian for a decade thanks to the influence of Paul and others in our circle. Six or more of those years I was vegan. I'm off the ball on veganism, but I am still solidly committed to not consuming animal flesh. It's the way to go. Veganism, really, is even better. I'm just a horrible jerk who isn't living up to the highest ethical standard possible.
I haven't ever really written about my love of bodybuilding, largely because, as a homo, I fetishize it and certainly one person's fetish is not another's. Also because although I am in better shape than years back, I don't feel that I am a bodybuilder. But aside from that stuff, I think it is amazing that the body is something that can respond so dramatically to acts of will through work and diet. Bodybuilding is also something athletic that avoids most of the things I dislike or find boring about organized sports. There are very few drunken, cheering fans. Cars don't clog downtown to go to stadiums to see it, and though competitions exist (usually with unfortunate skin-bronzing and music choices) there is really no need for them in order to continue the "sport". It is mostly a solitary pursuit. The art of ancient Greeks and Romans, as well as the current issue of ESPN Magazine, are in my view on to something with their idealization of the human form for its own sake. Notice I didn't say "male form", either. They may have been raging homos, but there are lots of boobies in that art, too.
So, I have now gone on for hundreds of words without a website telling me I have reached the maximum number of characters. I turn 30 in five days, so there's a glimpse of where I am at 29. Hello again, Livejournal.
Remember: Tomorrow. Vegan potluck at Fort Wayne in Detroit, by the formal row of trees unless there's some problem with that. 11:30AM, $5 to park. If the fort is closed, relocate to Tricentennial Park along the Riverwalk. Looks like it might be as hot as the last one! I CAN'T WAIT!!!!
(That's in Southwest Detroit, it's not in Indiana)
Saturday, June 19, 2010, 11:30AM
Fort Wayne is open until 4PM and allows picnicing. Admission is free, but parking is $5. Parking can also be free-ish if people carpool (I can fit five in my car) or park on Jefferson. Everybody should bring something vegan to eat and contribute some means for eating it outside and on the ground. Omnivores are plenty welcome. This event should be scalable if everyone brings something, whether there are two or twenty-two-thousand in attendance.
In the case of rain, we can all get wet. In case of goose poop, There Will Be Tarps.
Because I'm exited, I decided to cross-post to my Livejournal from the main Unibrows website for the following.
I've secured a venue for the premiere of the seven-minute "Unreason" movie! It will be in Detroit next month, but don't just show up at Mack and Bewick at 4AM on the 19th and expect to see it. I will post further details once they're secured. Meanwhile, wouldn't you like to SEE some of it?! Huh?! How about a TRAILER?!!
My sister has been in the psych ward at St. John's for several days and is doing very well. The ward is organized with a strict schedule, which Josette has never had (other than school) for her whole life, and she's finding it empowering. She's also taking her meds regularly, which at home she fails to do despite trying to keep up an effort.
I'm concerned that the conditions upon returning home after the highly structured hospital stay will return her to the same conditions and problems as before. Seeing the amazing turn around caused by a safe, structured place and consistent meds, I'm convinced that something like school would do wonders for her if she could apply herself to it.
The doctors told her that she may have come within ten minutes of death, and she owes her life to a quick 911 call and a quick response. After several days in the psych ward, she has also been told that if she went out into the world and returned with a bachelor's degree that she could work there. I would love to see such a thing happen, but she isn't even considering school because she feels she can't afford it.
Do any of you know anything about what incentives exist to assist paying for an education for someone who is on disability with a mental disorder?