Tuesday, February 24, 2009

In the RED

So, you definitely know you've spent too much money in a store when upon arriving home, there is a bouquet of flowers and a bottle of champagne waiting for you.  Not from a lover or a secret admirer and its not even your birthday. But FROM the STORE you just assaulted with your credit card.  Such was the case in my ,"I don't look at price tags" days. The days of wine and roses. Days long gone. 

As me and my best friend blazed into the Beverly Center in my Range Rover one fine afternoon and strutted up the all too slow moving escalator, I was prepared to do some serious damage. And damage, I did. But as always, most of the damage was done to myself. I didn't know how or where but I was poised, ready to strike, Gold Amex in hand. I know you're surprised it wasn't the Platinum, but they had not come out yet...Gold was at that point, top of the line. And I wielded it with great pride. So as I sashayed around I found my mark. One of the most expensive stores in the place,  of course, which has since gone out of business.

A place that would clothe you from head to toe.  It was like when they dress you for a film, but you don't pay. In fact you get paid. EXCEPT that I would be the one paying. This was lost in the translation. I mean this store suits you from the top of your head to the bottoms of your feet, and everything in between.  Start with a possible hat, necklace, scarf, blouse, jacket, trousers, belt, shoes, socks, underwear.  You name it. Lets start with casual wear [pink cashmere sweater outfit to fly in], smart appt/audition outfit[Dolce Gabana navy suit] . You think they'd have given me some free clothes since I did an add campaign for them but, no. Gucci dress [de rigueur sexy number for whatever !!!]. Manolo Blahnik's up the ass [the Jimmy Choo of yesterday]  Too much to remember, really.  But the list went on and on and on.

As my dear friend recalls it, I walked around in a kind if trance ,  my eyes glazed over and whatever they brought [the three salesgirls running amok] I just kept saying yes, uunnhhuunnn, OK!!!  Once one of the great outfits was established, then came the shoes, oh, the PERFECT necklace, they need a belt and a bra with sufficent uplift power. Think Madonna pointed titties. Things flying fast and furious as the stack of take homes got bigger and bigger. I have done many a rushed fittings for filming but these people had it down to a science. Shorten the length wearing a heel, [I am only 5"4 after all] and on to the next,next, next.

Of course in addition to my seek and destroy my bank account attitude under the guise, gee, aren't I in and cool, part of what was fueling me was  a seemingly endless supply of caffe lattes. How many was that, my third.  No, fourth... Like  being at a bar with a cute guy, having so much "fun" you just keep drinking  and drinking until you are sick at the end of the night, or worse, in the public bathroom.  Intimate with the cold white toilet. Silly me, I was hoping to be so with the cute, sensitive ponytail guy. [Another scary 80's fact]  And I now wonder : was it the booze that had me tossing my cookies or the sick fact that my head, face, hands etc were in a public toilet that thousands of asses have occupied...ugh...good times. I don't wish to be 20 again.

That  glorious and memorable day, the bill exceeded even my  great expectations. I had to actually pull a second Amex to cover it all, to my shame this one was NOT gold. I may be blacking it out, like a woman after giving birth not allowing herself to remember the really painful parts...but I think I had to actually put a few things back. Horror of all horrors. But to be fair to me, I can't be certain that occurred.  So please don't hold it against me.

The want and the need thing is strong, in all of us.  And the actual difference between what we "want" and "need" get incredibly distorted. At least for me it does. The HOW it manifests is individual though. But it all stems from the same place. Rumi calls it a longing to belong to oneself.  And yes, we are programmed ....... "they" want to keep us two all important things. Scared and consuming.  I was one of the biggest supporters. But I think I tried to hide the scared with all of my needs/wants.  I was scared that I did not fit in, just a girl high school drop out from Michigan.  Scared I did not have the right clothes, shoes, hair, makeup,  or things to say. The only one that really fed me and kept me growing was seeking the right things to say....because in general, that put me on a sort of spiritual path. For lack of a better phrase. 

My experience with wanting is that I see something I feel I must have. Lets say a Juicy Couture, black short sleeved, polka dotted, terrycloth sweatshirt with a hood but not the shorts [hint,hint...a little too specific]... Anyway, I want it. And think of how cute I will look in it, and the places I can wear it, that it can be dressed up or  dressed down, I build my case of why it MUST be mine.  And so on and so on. Then comes the worry, if I cannot get it. The ways to get some money for it. The sadness of not being able to get it. The self loathing. The pity party for me. It is a very negative experience. Over a freaking terrycloth hoodie. See the madness??!!!

The opposite is that I see it, I want it, I get it!!! She shoots, she SCORES!!! Fans applaud!!!!YYYAAAAAAAA!!!!   Then another kind of madness ensues. Yes, it feels good to have it as I literally skip out the store. Won't I be so cute in this, HAH I got it,  I can't wait to wear it. Where will I wear, when will I wearit, should I just slip it on and wear it out??!!! Lijke as a kid I used to do with a new pair of shoes, only to find that they hurt my little fat feet. [another blog altogether] But as I am just about out the door of the store with my new Juicy hoodie in hand....something catches my eye.......what's that? The newest baggy" boyfriend jeans" that all magazines have been showing and made by J Brand??!!! Uhhhhh... I want those..... Do I return the hoodie.... And it all starts all over again.

Or there is the scenario that with the much coveted hoodie at my home. I am just NOT wearing it. Why you ask? Because I must find the absolute perfect occassion to wear it to. I don't want to waste my first time wearing out for all the world to see afterall. This is the kind of obsessive shit that actually occupies my mind, I am sorry to say. If you feel bad for me, feel free to purchase the Juicy hoodie on line. I know I will feel so much better and so might you.

It is, as a great writer  I worked with once eloquently called it: Filling the wrong hole. This I tried to do in many different ways for a long time. And still at times fall prey to its craziness. A dear makeup artist friend of mine once heard me obsessing over a particular skirt I saw in a magazine and simply said... Will that skirt complete you. YES!!! I shouted at her. YES it will. It is the missing link. The fucking skirt IS the missing link in my life and will make all my problems, sadnesses and shortcomings go far far away.... Of course I got her point  but I was young and dumb and thought part of it was she was just jealous because she couldn't see a designer skirt in Vogue and have it summoned to her as I could. OWWWWWW, lucky me. 

Wise people have said that what happens between getting the things we want and then them not being enough[ and that can last a minute or days, weeks or months] is that we simply STOP wanting.  We just STOP WANTING>>>>> In that is a calm, a peace, a sense of completion. A stopping of the seeking to fill the wrong hole. Not a completion because we got the shirt, car, man...fill in the blank. But a stopping to the endless want. Stemming from what I have is not enough.

With all this "STUFF" in the world how do we navigate it all .  How do we not buy into it when it is constantly being shoved down our throats?  And what will really complete us? One thing is for sure, no person completes us. {Hate that Jerry McGuire line, sooo awful!!!} No job or career completes us. Not even a child completes us, but it comes closer for me than anything else ever has.  

What if..... we are already complete. What if, all of this is a pack of lies. That you need to grow and learn and change where you are in your life. What if you are exactly where you are supposed to be and whatever you think, that you have never made any mistakes in your life. NOT ONE. I know many find this impossible and even arrogant and offensive. Oh I'm sorry, am I knocking on the door of you possibly releasing your cherished suffering? Your sob stories of how hard your life has been. The same stories you have told people over and over, embellishing them a little each time for dramatic effect and to up the sympathy level. 

I speak to what I have direct experience with. All people do this. But the trying to escape IS our pain and suffering. The nonacceptance for our life, exactly as it is, IS the pain and suffering.  The bludgeoning of ourselves, of our supposedly wrong choices, or even egotistically making all we do more than it is worth, IS the pain and suffering. It is, what it is, as it is. So move on. Sometimes its great and sometimes it sucks. So be it. What is with all the labels designed to falsely elevate or  drag us into the mud. Each as much sleep as the other.

Enough is enough. I say what we are trying to escape to is here, right now but only when it is seen with clarity. The clarity being an acceptance. Of whatever is happening, right now.  And the peace that will come along with it. And it will never look the way we think it should. Never. What we are seeking is so simple and so present that we miss it. Like the fish in the sea who can't find the water because he is swimming in it. For those of you who are happy where you are, how wonderful, God bless. But for those of us who still seek some future date for things to be perfect, you are missing the perfection right now. Even if it shows up on this planet of duality as pain, joy, sadness, ecstasy, love, hate.....so be it. Feel. Love. Be a human....being. And live and let live.

As my philosophy teacher used to say to all of his students:

Everything is in the moment, except you.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Creature of habit-at

I hate to admit it but I think I am an extremely obsessive person. About odd things like keeping my house clean, keeping my child's toys orderly, painting my nails, keeping laundry down to nothing, emptying the water that fills in the soap dishes, putting up the shades to the same length, making  homemade soup almost everyday [even in the summer], walking the same path with my baby everyday, cooking the same foods, eating the same foods at specific restaurants,
having candles burning during the day, doing the same things and wholeheartedly expecting different results.......and we all know what that is.

 You see, I am a creature of habit to an extreme degree. I have things that I do over and over and over. Day after day and year after year. I am quite predictable. And a walking contradiction as well. But not in the ' touch the light switch three times ' kind of way. But more in the "do what I know" kind of way. This combined with being a control freak and a busy addict creates a sort of hell for my family. I do 20 things at one time and expect others to keep up. I am even this way in my communication. I have many voices going on in my head at all times and come out with complete nonsequetor. But the train of the thought is normal to me. Albeit ,Abby Normal.  

Is it that I just long for control in a world where we never have any. That and a desire for things not to keep changing, which as you can imagine causes so much pain. Mix in some huge abandonment issues and I am certifiable. Most people are, I think but cannot admit it. In the unconscious mind, we are all nuts, lets face it. And as I work to bring a light more light onto my issues ......it is madness. I must credit my dear David Lynch who always encouraged me to not be afraid to shine a light in the dark corners of my mind. He does so by  courageous example and I love him for teaching me that.

 Of course I'd much rather keep the spotlight on the shiny, great parts of me and pretend the other stuff does not exist. Who wouldn't... Oh, who am I kidding, that is not true. It may have been in the past but part of this blog is to tear down the walls that hold me inside.....[thank you Bono]  To stop trying to say my words within the context of others' words. To show me, warts and all and in that find my voice/my truth because truth is so beautiful to me.

The pattern of my days changes very little and when it does, I have great  anxiety.  I wake up between 7 an 7:30am. My baby nurses like a banshee and as I pry myself away, he screams bloody murder. He is a Leo and has a roar like no other. I make my way through the maze of locked baby proofed gates, and toys lodged in places designed to stop the 4 [ugh,yes 4 ] dogs from coming into the kitchen area and peeing all over the carpet. It is an obstacle course for sure. At least one time a day, one of of slams against it or falls or smashes our toe. It's a real party.

First order of business, make 6 cups of coffee in the maker for me and my man to wake up.
Then I promptly begin to clean and organize all my baby's toys. I believe they play better without chaos but maybe its ME that plays better without chaos. Of course I wouldn't know, since all I have is chaos.  This ritual of cleaning and organizing his toys is repeated numerous times through out the day. Clean up books, he throws them. Arrange trains, he throws them. Put balls back into the bucket, he throws them. It is yet another, kind of madness within my so called life. Sometimes he will even stalk me and throw them just as I finish. And I have even engaged in many a battle where he throws them and I put them back, and he throws them and I put them back...... guess who wins??!!! You got it.  The Leo baby.  But alas, there is always a little while later when distracted, I succeed at getting it all arranged perfectly for optimal play...... He wins some battles but I win the war.

So one may see how some of this is borderline obsessive. And that is only the 15 to 20 minutes of my morning. God forbid do I endeavor to change my outgoing message on my cell phone. This is repeated to nauseam, never feeling I can get it right. [Too sweet, too wanna be sexy, to long, to childish, too too]  Then I have approximately 1 hour and 15 minutes to get breakfast for my man, 2 teenagers and baby. And then its preparing lunches for all. Often times fried chicken tenders[ a 12 year habit] or now this year, I have opened it up a little and am actually making sandwiches. Wow, growth, who da  thunk. Being on the budget means food made at home is always cheaper. bvdjdhotuehwvnkblkghejkl!!! Budgets suck... no one can be a true Gelson's whore on a budget.

Then it is juggling my baby. Playing, reading and watching Thomas the tank engine.  Doing laundry. Writing my blog when time and thoughts permit. Sometimes [OK. almost daily] trying to paint my nails when they inevitable gets knocked and look like shit. So the process starts all over again tomorrow. Are we having fun yet? Doing all the morning dishes. Wrangling all the dogs outside. Rainy days present a special kind of joy.  Muddy paws in and out all day. Cute little buggers. And cleaning up the endless poop they seem to leave IN the house. So much for the $3,500. training per dog at at "top kennel" in Santa Monica. You know the kind, with pictures of "stars" all over the walls. It didn't mean shit. Literally. Pun intended.  

Preparing for the daily walk can be harder than it seems. Must get both of us dressed. I have been doing a weight loss wrap so that means putting on the oil while avoiding my satellite baby who wants to touch me  at all times.  Especially when my energy is begging that he doesn't. Murphy's Law runs rampant in my life, how about yours? Then wrapping myself with saran wrap like a sausage up one leg, across the hips [God help these Italian/Hungarian hips]  and down the other.  Promotes sweating, you see. And it itches like crazy. But I am in Hollywoodland and if I want to work, [which sometimes I'm not even sure I do] I cannot have extra weight on me. Not in the land of Hollypops. Sticks with heads. 

The walk itself is always a great reprieve and feels great to move. Because I get so little movement the rest of the day...hehehe. I walk like a woman on a mission. Briskly and with a good amount of pace. Right left right left. The same thought running through my head over and over.  If you keep your heart rate up for at least 45 minutes, you burn FAT all day. Right left right left, squeezing each buttocks as I go. Trying desperately to tighten me booty.  Right left right left. Sometimes under headphones with music, moving to the beat of the song. Alanis Morrisette: though I love her is sometimes too slow. But meaningful.  Red hot chili peppers: Californication gets a good work out.  U2 : seems to have a bit of it all.[Again, thank you Bono]

Once home baby boy sleeps for a bit so I am free. Free to do what I want, free to be who I want. So I  run for my daily fix of one my idols, Marilyn Milian . She is the judge on The People's Court. I want to be her when I grow up. hmmmmmmm, that's disturbing coming from a 44 year old woman. Oh well, tis the truth and you know me with that.  Judge Milian's ability to weed through all the bullshit , get to the bottom line in mere minutes, her neutral approach to every person that enters her courtroom and her commitment to what is true. 

I even steal some of her sayings: To my self obsessed, manipulative step daughter I'll say:"Where you're going, I've  been, sat down, had a coke and came back!"  That is my favourite.   Or there is "It  looks like we have to do a little rough justice here." And ,"What do you think this is a bonanza?"  And when she is interrupted, which is often as I am "Did I breath and give you the impression I was done talking??!!" Judge  Marilyn Milian, you literally make me a better woman.

After my fix, it is only a short amount of time before the teenagers get home. This means enjoy the peace while it lasts.  My stepdaughter literally never stops talking and all she talks about is herself. On and on and on go her stories featuring her the star of each and everyone. My son will alternate between screaming everything he says as if all others are twenty yards away to only answering in one word sentences, a series of grunts and clicks. And that is if he talks and answers at all. 14 and 15 as they are, they will more often then they care  for me to admit behave as if they are 4 year olds, he teasing and scaring her, she shrieking and screaming, stop it, stop it, stop it.  You feel like you are losing your mind. And you are.

It is now that the countdown ensues, [ 15,14,13, ] waiting for my man to come [ 12,11, ]  and buffer all this with me. So a bottle of wine MUST be opened  [10, 9, ] as I try to ignore the teens and maneuver through the witching hour with the baby [ 8,7 ] while I monitor them.[ 6,5, ] Are u doing your homework? Take out the trash! [ 4 ]  Why is your room a pig stye AGAIN?[ 3 ] Stop teasing the baby. [ 2  ] Stop teasing each other.  [1 ] You got what grade on that test.  [1...] You left dishes here.  [1!] uhh [where is he?]  Take your stuff to your room, not in the middle of the floor. [ 1!! ] Did u feed the dogs? [ 1!!!] uhhhhh  [where is he??]  [ 1!!!! ] Hang up the phone and finish your homework.  [0??!!!!! ]  [where is he? Abandonment kicking in!!]   This is it. This is my life.

 Be it ever so humble, there's no place like home. 

At last he arrives and  I have a real partner. When he is here, he is always helping in so many ways. We bear the burdens & joys together. Because to be good parents, one must be involved completely. And make no mistakes, babies are amazing. But teenagers can make you crazy. And we have teenagers AND diapers. Therefore, we are amazed and crazy. Amazingly crazy.

This may lead one to believe that I long for a different life. Less stress. A healthier grasp of my issues. More money.  Better behaved kids. Less obsessive patterns. Well, I do........................ Want more money. Who doesn't. But I would not give up any part of this, my life, for the world. It is mine and perfectly....mad.  Don't cha know, its a mad, mad, mad, mad world.  Marvelously mad. And everchanging.  

Be it ever so humble....there's no place like home.


Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Child, woman. Woman, child.

I was 19 years old. I had only been living in LA for a little over a year and had begun a halfhearted pursuit of acting. After all, what else could I do??  And it wasn't  even really acting that I wanted to learn, I didn't feel I had anything to learn at that point in my life.  I thought I knew it all like most of us at that age. And let's face it, I was lazy.  So in this naive state, I just thought ...hmmmmm....it would be "fun" to be a movie star. Like it was that easy. And my, mother coming from a show business family promptly jumped on board.

One of the first teachers I encountered was a very bitter old man who at one point was a director and had even been blacklisted. Needless to say, he had quite a chip on his shoulder. As I tried to do a scene from Agnes of God, he mocked and belittled me. Sadly, his own anger leaked out onto  all of his students. I'll never forget what he said. "Child, woman. Woman, child. Whatever you are. This town is gonna chew you up and spit you out when you aren't sweet anymore!!!"  Yikes...... That hurt. I'd been chewed up and spit out my whole life. So this was not unfamiliar territory. And aren't most 19 year old girls child, women??!!! 

Of course in retrospect, I see it clearer and thank God, encountered some amazing teachers after him who loved and supported me and my growth and exploration. But I have after all these years never forgot his words. With all the positive that has come into my life, it seems I've hung on with a literal vengeance to the ugly, painful stuff that was done or said to me. This fact reminds me to a. be careful what I say   b. try not to spew my unresolved anger onto others 
c. try to let go of all this negative baggage. All of which I am only mildly successful at.

In a business where you are defined by your very last job, not a body of work. By the people you know, date or are related to.  By how "thin" you are and how" young" you look. By mistakes and gossip from your past, it is not an easy task to put all that stuff down. You see, in Hollywoodland, it is your calling card. Don't tell the truth, hide your age, keep fit with the Madonna 4 hour a day workout. And always, always, ALWAYS at all costs, you must look SEXY.

I've always wondered, what does it mean exactly to be a "SEX SYMBOL"?  Does it mean in the dictionary if you look up sex there is a picture of you? Or the huge amount of women who are called that? Why is that title reserved more for women then men? Does it mean when people look at you they imagine have sex WITH you? Or do you just symbolize it in such a way that they will then think of sex with their beloved ?  How has the MOST physically connected one can be to another  become as trivialized and mundane as squatting to go to the bathroom on a toilet?

I also find it so noteworthy that a few of the women who were so famous for this title, sex symbol,  were actually dealing with some interesting issues around it that were diametrically opposed to the image the world had given them.  I site Clara Bow and Bettie Page as two of them. If anyone cares to look beyond the image , they will find yet another American with some confused ideas about it all. 

This is the truth with me as well. I tried to courageously look at and reveal things that made me uncomfortable. Things I did not understand about relationships and intimacy. My job [I learned later by better teachers] was to illuminate the human struggle.  And there were times I  naively worked with people who were not on the same page or even on the same planet as I. But I learned.  If I was not discovering, uncovering & recovering, I would've just been an exhibitionist. Desperate and excited to strip and show my God given attributes.  Which is fine if that is your cup of tea. God bless. I speak here, as always, of MY truth from my direct experience. I had no interest in that. In fact, it was like an exorcism.

 There is quite a world famous scene in a film that gives me friction. I mean if you are gonna take your underwear off for a scene in a film, spread your legs and be lit well enough that your "pooch" is visible, which is not an easy task for a DP by the by: Why not be real enough to own it. Not to pretend that you did not know that you could be seen  , in the scene, that way.  A role and move that ultimately made you a scenester.   hehehe.....  But seriously, it is just such hypocrisy to me. Maybe the average person who is not accustomed to being on  film sets will buy that but anyone in the business knows it to be pure bullshit.

What is up with America and nudity anyway. As an actress, once your shirt is off... your work is immediately dismissed. It is not the same in Europe. It shows the immaturity of this very young country we live in.  Even on the scale of breast feeding. It freaks people out. As if they have forgotten that breasts were intended to feed  babies. In the healthiest and purist way.  I have even heard breast feeding characterized that the mother is getting off sexually and that is why they do it. Or that it is just a fad, when it has been happening for thousands of years.  All over the world!!! 

This judgement and shock at an actresses recent actions of nursing an ill and starving baby while visiting Africa was appalling. What a heart she has. What an example of a pure woman with the maternal instinct firmly in place. I wonder how can in the face of such selflessness and care  these crude comments arise. Every base man with little to no being uttered the predictable, "I'd let her nurse me too!!!"  With Obama making us proud to be Americans again, finally, comments like that are nothing less than embarrassing and pathetic. The point being missed entirely.

Is the world really becoming that polarized with less and less of the needed gray area in tact. Is it turning into the Stephen King novel,"The Stand."??? It seems so. The light is getting lighter and the dark, darker, stupider and more dense. Make no mistake, the world is changing. We all need to think before we act. Be clear about the path that we are on. Or not. Your choice. 

Many people are changing their lives. And will meet resistance as they step out of the tribe, out of the collective sleep. An actor on Letterman the other night is doing just that and  was being publicly ridiculed  for it. It was clear he did not want to be there and my guess is a lawsuit was threatened if he didn't show. So he showed with his truth and was mocked mercilessly. I found it another sad example of the immaturity and desire to always "rip others down" syndrome that is rampant in this world.

 I had the honor of playing Elizabeth Taylor. She illustrates this in her direct experience with her "public." She was loved by all. Her life since she was a child had been documented. Her third husband died in a tragic plane crash [i believe] and her public mourned with her. UNTIL, she started a relationship with Eddie Fisher and he left America's sweetheart Debbie Reynold's to do so. She received hate mail and death threats. She hid out in Rome trying to get Cleopatra off the ground. Then almost died and had to have an emergency tracheotomy, and  predictably, her public came rushing back to her. That same year she won an Oscar for what she calls her WORST performance and says she knows it is only because she almost died. It is transparent and actually quite weird. 

So we can live in the world but not be of it. I want to continue to have the courage to go against the tide. And thank God, that tide is changing. What is that saying....something like....It is just as bad to commit an injustice on another as it is to stand by idle and watch it occur without saying or doing anything. Water seeks its own level and I will continue to shout and shine my truth from my blog mountaintop and if I reach even one person, I am happy. And my family is thankful that maybe, maybe, they don't have to hear it all themselves.


Sunday, February 8, 2009

Confessions of a Gelson's whore

So, I've always been a huge fan of Gelson's... the Super Market.  But in these financially challenging times, shopping at a store with such a super mark -up is not too bright. But I can't say that I don't miss it like an addict to their heroin fix. There are so many wonderful things about Gelson's  super market, the least of not that its somewhere you can go where they remember your name.... [uh, was that in a TV show theme song??!!] And the store itself is always so clean, the produce fresh and ripe, and oh so shiny from the waxy finish. 

When I enter a Gelson's I am oddly happy, and grocery shopping (a normally mundane task) becomes a powerfully moving experience. I fancy myself quite successful as I fill up my cart to the rim. Sadly eyeing those who only have the hand held carry along. Ha! I think, they cannot afford to fill a cart like I.  Sad to say, but I would feel quite good about my seeming status. 

Price can be no issue when one shops there. We Gelson's frequenters do not even LOOK at the prices, for we are proud and free!  We want paper AND plastic!!! We deserve it.  

As I approach the check out, I anticipate what holiday is being promoted with gusto on the beautiful paper bags. Every holiday seems to have its days of glory at the beloved Gelson's. Bright pink and red hearts for Valentine's Day. Big orange pumpkins and scary ghosts at Halloween. Even a big Happy 44th Birthday Sherilyn, with balloons and brightly colored......just kidding. That was my imagination. But when you shop there, your ego gets all puffed up, like a bird that knows its being watched. 

As the ringer takes each item out of my cart and rings it up, that's right, at Gelson's you don't have to put your groceries on the conveyor belt. Its like the queen not ever needing to touch her money. Queen like feel,  I stand munching on some tiny size Chiclets [only available at Gelson's] feeling quite proud of all my purchases.  Knowing these lowly workers can't shop here themselves, maybe just a discount lunch at the deli section.....

Then, the total........ $473.55 .............. uh.............. wow........... yikes.......... huh ........uhhhhhhh!!!  Now the deflation process begins, if one has any common sense at all. You look at the bags colorful as they are but they can't stop the thoughts from flooding in. Did I get THAT much? Maybe I should have held off on the prime rib roast!! Shampoo is much cheaper if I use my discount card at the beauty supply store, Friends. Should I put something back?? No, no, no toooo embarrassing.  Next time I will go someplace else.  Someplace cheaper for God's sake. 

But like any other addict, you soon find yourself at the dealers door about a week later for your next fix. Because you see, I am the girl who laughs in the face of buy one get one free, spits at the notion of money back coupons, I don't even think Gelson's makes them. But I was wasteful back then and had no value for money. I did not grow up with money and had a family that acted as if it was so important.  And where it is nice to have, [and to the universe I definitely want more of it] it buys nothing real and often times a lot of headaches and heartaches.  In my experience whatever you get, just makes you want more. Its awful. 

The word "want" comes from the Norse.  And its translation is lack. Want means lack. Now that is not to say that I don't occasionally hit the Gelson's but NOT as hard as in the past.  In fact, I tip toe in and out as quick as possible. no pomp and pageantry, just my humble budget.  It has for me lost some of its shine.  I am however happy to share for those who have the need, that Seventh Generation natural diapers [for all us conscious mothers] are as competitive as at Baby's-R-Us. And cheaper than Whole Foods. Shocking really. Maybe even Gelson's is getting the planetary shift occurring.  

A fact you may or may not know is that I have been blessed with another baby boy. At 42, I had my second son Christian James.  My Myles Maximillian has just turned 15 years old. Teenagers and diapers. [A book I was trying to write as well.] This is perfect, for me. My kids continue to be the best things in my life.  But this time around, I stopped working to stay at home with him. Yes, I left Hollywood for over the past two years.  And then I entered into another beautiful relationship with Ralph. Ralph helps me feed my family.  Ralph lets me keep some of my money for doing the things I want to do.  And Ralph allows me to buy extra little things I want to buy. Of course I am speaking of Ralph's market. OK, its not as clean. Not as shiny. Not as COSTLY!!!!! My life has drastically changed. My confession is that at first I hated it!!!  I felt it below me. How could I put my groceries on the belt??!!! What do you mean am I a value costumer with a card??? Why can't I just have paper and plastic without being asked and having to feel the guilt of possibly being wasteful. 

But as time has a way of teaching us, if we allow it to, I learned. As money was tight, I could go get much more food for not a lot of money. And there is nothing worse than not knowing what you are gonna feed your family. And rejecting the McDonalds nation as I do, I want my kids to be healthy. And Gelson's does not always mean healthy. 

Another confession is that I who swore to never do that coupon thing, now do it, and do it with gusto. I saved $35.00 the other day and could not believe how happy it made me. No its not a lot, but its something.  So I shall continue on my path to being aware of the real worth of things. Be it food, people, time with my family, with my friends,  and how much I am willing to give Hollywoodland. Life is a dance and when we dance the music keeps changing. We need to adjust to the music with grace. Everything is changing people, will you dance through it with grace or have it pull you kicking and screaming, it's up to you... Or is it???!!!

Saturday, February 7, 2009

I know we are all one but THIS is ridiculous.

I watch the kids at my teen stepdaughters school and they all look exactly the same!!! The girls all have long, straightened hair [which is painstaking ironed flat every morning, hence the 2 hour before they leave wake up call] tight "skinny" jeans[which I am sure is great friction for the many who aren't skinny enough to squeeze into a pair] ,tucked into Uggs [de rigueur: at least mid calf but to the knee is preferred but more $$$] or Converse-Chuck Taylors, preferably black. Like the tons of coal eyeliner giving a raccoon appearance, desperate to be grown up?!!! The t-shirts are layered, usually extremely low cut and the jacket of choice, a zipper hoodie. And if permitted, a g-string coming up out of their "skinny" jeans ,bright and exposed by design for all to see.

 Where this is not a bad look per se, [minus the g-string which is ugly no matter what age you are], the issue is that literally, they are ALL wearing it. It is like a version of young, Stepford wives. As they leave after the dismissal bell en masse, picking my daughter out of the crowd of clones is almost impossible. I simply now wait for her to find me.

 It is sad on a lot of levels . Do any of them want to explore who they are becoming or just fit in. And fit into what? The overt sexualization of girls, women. There are even "skinny" jeans that are low cut for baby girls. BABY GIRLS!!! Of course if your baby is healthy and round, forget it. They won't fit. Evoking such thoughts as....Hhhhhmmmm, does my baby needs to be on a diet... But I digress. 

I get that people might say that this is a part of being a teenager. But I beg to differ, it is a mindset. Many grown ups are doing the same thing. There are these "in" outfits that rob people of any personal expression on the most base level, what you wear on your back. How you present yourself out in the world. I like the Einstein story, that he had all the same pants and shirts that he wore everyday. Because he had more important things to think about. At least that was somewhat original.

 I suppose it does not help that we live in a place where if one does dresses out of the box they are laughed at, mocked or put on the worst dressed list. But personally, I would rather have that then be a part of the sleep of the masses of clones. Because that thinking and following leads to a lack of individuality in every aspect of life. Like a stone thrown in the water, there is a ripple affect. What do "they" say about politics -repeating it. What do "they" say about plastic surgery-repeating it. What do "they" say about when to have sex-repeating it. What do "they" say about GOD- repeating it. No honoring, exploration or even acknowledgement of one's direct experience. It all goes through the "they" filter. And most importantly who the fuck is THEY?!

Friday, February 6, 2009

Whats wrong with the truth???!!!

Since I was a child I would always just call things as I saw them. Much to the dismay of my family. I had little to no filter on my mouth and not much has changed. This can bring a lot of frustration to those around me who DO NOT speak their minds or share their truth. In the 1950's nobody said the truth so as James Dean cried on screen and Marlon Brando wailed a heartfelt ,"Stelllllaaaa!!"  The world gratefully embraced them and then elevated them to icon status, thankful that finally someone was authentically sounding the notes of the heart. [Mind you, not as many woman were allowed that revealing truth, ha, the patriarch. But that is another conversation altogether. Blog to follow at a later date]

 As I lost myself in my 20's, as most do to materialism, narcissism, and the basic pursuit to "make my mark" [sprinkled with the ever present abuse of drugs and alcohol, it was a confusing and lonely time. I was trying to be who everyone else thought I should be. Or who I saw being successful. And who the acknowledgement from the public and fans wanted me to be. Yes, I had money. Yes, I had relations with attractive and sometimes "famous" men. Yes, I had a promising career. But what was it promising?!! More sleep from my true self? More distance from the authentic child who said what she saw and felt. More of the running on the hamster wheel of trying to keep up with the Jone's. Or the Julia's.  When I hated her and her "work", and crocodile tears??!!!

 What a lie on so many levels I was living but I was the last person to know it. How could I see it through all the shiny accolades and endless photo shoots. Wasn't I living the Hollywoodland dream??!!! My biggest leap back to truth was having my son, Myles when I was 28 years old. Someone, perfect and beautiful, OUTSIDE of ME to focus on. To love and to care for. Unconditional love. Someone who will never leave me.... :{  Of course, 3 months in, I was in Africa filming with him in tow. But to my credit he was on every location I worked on. After all, WHO was gonna pay for the extreme lifestyle I had set up for myself. I was living the seed my mother had planted: Always make your own money so you never have to count on a man.

 Through constant seeking and disappointing disillusionment from the business over the next 16 years we fast forward to me, now. I am thrilled to report that I , with big mouth in tact, I am back. It was a hard and extremely painful road at times but worth every step. I like to describe ,myself as the one who is screaming that the emperor is naked!!! My best friend/lover/life partner Dylan takes it a step further. He says I am the screaming,"The emperor is naked!!!!! And he has a small dick!!!"  OK, he is accurate. 

My dear friend was sharing about who I am to a client of hers. And they replied that I sound like a very nice person. She promptly corrected them. "Oh, she's not nice, but she's honest!" It hurt a little but I laughed and still do at the accuracy of these statements. To thine own self, be true. And now I am. It only took 44 years to get here, with still a lot of work ahead of me. 

This blog is part of the sharing of my unfiltered truth. If you like it, read on. If not, never read again. You see, it makes no difference to me.  So I ask, what's wrong with the truth???!!!! Isn't it easier then living in the tangled web of lie after lie after lie. Isn't it cleaner to just honestly know and see oneself. Isn't this where our consciousness is headed. I understand these are rhetorical questions. They are meant to be.

 We can lie to others all day long and many times they will never know. But how long can one continue to lie to oneself??? You cannot run from yourself be cause wherever you go, there you are. And maybe you are just missing the absolute beauty and truth that exists in the seeming flaws. My dearest teacher Roy London, who passed used to illustrate this to me in this fact. When a rose blossoms, there is ALWAYS one flawed petal. Always ONE FLAWED PETAL. Of course, the florist will pluck it off because its not so pretty to look at. But I believe when we begin to see the beauty in the flaws, and accept and embrace them, it is the beginning of self love."

 And that's all I have to say about that..." Thank you Forrest Gump.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Leave Christian Bale alone

Yes, I heard the tape after reading 16 mean spirited and judgemental comments on a friends Facebook. I thought , oh my God, he killed is mother, or a dog or did some unimaginable and horrific act. Oh no!!!! But no, he expressed anger at a DP who was insensitive to the space an actor tries to create. How many times that has happened to me and it is so distracting. I never yelled at anyone [about that anyway] but wished I had at times.

 I am in no way condoning what he did but just feel that people should take their laser like analysis and aim it and themselves."Why so serious??" Nobody knows what is going on in CB's life personally. What is always underneath anger is hurt!!! Haven't any of you had therapy??!!! And who has not had some misplaced anger.

  Or better yet, who has the courage to own that they have! It just was not blasted for all the world to hear. CB's is and what a scary bandwagon of bludgeoning criticism he has now met with. It seems to me an example of the very problem we have in this world. Its all about focusing on negative shit.  Like the news, all dark and ugly stories.

 I always thought it would be so wonderful to have a Good News show. A show of amazing and empowering stories to uplift, empower and connect people. We are all one people, so when you judge another like that it simply reflects your own self hate. So give yourself and Christian and me a break. If you have a big reaction to this, investigate WHY????? Because the bigger the response, the more personal the material. Call me CRAZY as many have,but I live by the quote:   AN UNEXAMINED LIFE IS NOT WORTH LIVING. Examine you and stop with this nonsense.