on this x-mas eve
This blog was originally posted to The Dresden Dolls Diary.
i’ve noticed i’m getting into a really nasty habit.
i’m not posting when i feel like it because i keep stock-piling photos and long, complicated blogs involving all this media – and much like tons of other shit in my life, i lose the forest for the trees, get sidetracked and leave the shit hanging.
so fuck it. i’m just writing with no plan. i’m just writing because it’s xmas eve and i’m feeling reflective. and just took a two-hour bath, which gave me time to think. it’s 3 am and i’m still a little jetlagged from australia.
i’m at my parents house, the house i grew up in. i love coming here. i know the sound of every door latch and every floor creak, i am overly familiar with the rattle of the bannister (which i incidentally fell over, 13 feet, when i was 7) and the ticking of the clocks and – my favorite sound – the gurgling banging of the radiators. i’ve tried to explain this many times to many people: the only way i can describe the relationship i have with this house is to say that i had very few friends when i was little, and that the closest thing i had to a consistent “best friend”, who protected me and played with me and guided and amused me, was this house. some kids had a dog. whatever it takes.
the bath, unbeknownst to me, hadn’t been used as a bathtub in some time covered in Cat Hair, presumably because the Cat (and affectionate jet-black boy named shadow, he’s on my lap right now) likes to hang out in there and sleep. and shed. by the time i was fully immersed and noticed it, it was too absurd. there were thick clumps of it floating everywhere. instead of being grossed out it was sort of fun, i played a game to see how much floating Cat Hair i could wrest out of the tub and ball into a giant collection on the side of the tub. then i got the idea to go outside and feel the snow on the ground, sort of like when you run from a hot tub to a cold plunge. so i ran the shower as hot as possible, scalded myself, then wrapped myself in a blanket and ran (quietly, as to not wake my sleeping family) out to the back porch steps. they overlook a totally isolated wooded area, and i went for as long a walk in the 1-foot snow as my burning little pink feet could bear. i only got about 6 feet from the porch, the snow was very cold, and icy-sharp at the top, and my little feet froze. i waled back up the the porch and felt the relatively warm planks of wood under my feet. the blanket was keeping me warm and there was a very, very slight wind. the sky was crystal clear. the moon was casting really stark, bold shadows off of the bare craggly trees onto the blank-with-snow yard. it was a really astonishing sight. dead quiet.
i’ve canceled my life.
i’m leaving in two days for a short, killer dolls tour in cities where we know we can just rock out and have fun, and then i’m coming home with absolutely nothing on my schedule. i had a spring tour planned, i just canceled it. i was going to put the record out this spring; i canceled that too. everything around me has suggested that it’s time to stop, assess, re-start and then blast off.
i’m not going to go live in an ashram somewhere, don’t worry. i’m going to take an Actual Break. a real one, this time. not that fake shit where i say i’m going to do it and it turns into a five-day affair at home. this is It. i’m stopping., i swear. for at least two months. my apartment, my apartment is crying for it. it’s crying Amanddaaaaaaaaa pleeeeease clean meeeee. i’ve been dumping all this tour shit in it for 5 years and never sorting through it. i’ve done a dozen photoshoots int he past 6 months and havent gone through the shots. i have emails waiting to be answered that were sent to me in august. so it will be a cleaning, sorting, re-vamping, re-structuring the framework of my life and business kind of break.
the minute i decided all this, things changed. that saying about Jump and the Net Will Appear?
the moment i realized that i had my own decisions in my hands, that i could plan my life the way i needed….that i could stop depending on my old blueprint for life: Bam. not only did my head clear and the realization that a break was truly in order really hit me, but the possibilities of how i can re-structure my life also appeared. the right things and people appear when you start trusting yourself. that’s exactly what’s happening. it’s the exact same way with love-relationships. you can say that you want to start dating again in theory, but if you’re hung up, you can wander through life for YEARS and it’s not until you truly get over someone. then that the new lover walks into the party and your eyes meet. life is astounding that way, but it certainly makes sense. the phone starts ringing when you get off your ass and start doing dishes.
i just finished reading anthony kiedis’ (the lead singer from the red hot chili peppers) autobiography. what a fucking frightening life. i had no idea that up until really recently he was such a junkie. terrifying and the stories of how poorly treated everyone in that lifestyle gets when there’s drugs just ruling. to me the idea of not showing up to rehearsal because i’m out getting loaded is just simply unimaginable. my brain doesn’t even go there, neither does brian’s. we simply rely on each other in a way that excludes shit like that. i said to him today: we may argue, but at least we’re sober when we do. arguing with someone who’s been in and out of rehab 6 times over 15 years and just happens to be trying to kick that day after a week-long smack-and-coke binge. not quite fun. it’s enlightening reading how other people Do This Life. it’s the same lifestyle, give or take a mansion, motorcycle and tattoo or two. tour, band, rehearse, write, interview, assess, fight, make-up, perform…it’s a grind. but everybody find a different way of turning it into a Life of some sort. there’s so many different ways of doing it. but the similarities between bands are becoming more and more apparent to me. for the record, in most cases: i am anthony (minus the smack habit) and brian is flea (minus the mohawk).
they were so like us in their early days, though, just total freaks excited about being freaks and doing crazy action for no reason other than….they could. i had always assumed that their early fanbase must’ve been a real skate-punk crowd but from the way anthony describes it it was really similar to the early dolls crowds…a punk here, a goth here, a total rag-tag motley crew of whoever was into these crazy cats getting up on stage and being total clowns. the first tape i had was in 7th grade, i remember distinctly buying it at newbury comics, it was the self-titled album and i bought it because my best friend holly young and i had had a cafeteria discussion about how you could Just Tell if a band was Cool and Alternative from their name. we tried to think of good examples and we came up with Nine Inch Nails and The Red Hot Chili Peppers. but i actually had no idea what either of those bands sounded like. so in order to inform myself i went out and bought the tape and was hooked. blood sugar sex magik came out the year of 9th grade, and it was our summer theme CD. we would go to the meadows, smoke pot and blast that shit. that same bunch of friends and i went to see them play on new years eve. they blew me away with their live energy. we were crammed right up against the stage at some sports arena, about 20 people in from the front, really close.
the most memorable events of that new years eve, however, weren’t during the chili peppers set. the two opening bands were at that time totally unknown: Pearl Jam and The Smashing Pumpkins. Eddie Vedder crowd-surfed from the stage to the sound-desk and i remember grabbing his leg and making a mental note to remember about that in case he became famous and i could claim leg-touching bragging rights. the circle is now complete. the other very memorable moment was when we were waiting for the chili peppers to take the stage and this song came on over the PA. this guy in a baseball hat turned to me and said, “i love this song. this songs fucking rocks.” what is it? i asked. he said, “it’s this band called nirvana. they’re the shit.” the song was smells like teen spirit. i was witnessing the birth of grunge.
i am going to try to post my complicated blog about australia (i still have my fall blog, getting more obsolete by the second, sitting in my drafts folder with 25 pictures attached) within the next week or so. i can summarize the trip: FUCKING AMAZING. what a beautiful place filled with beautiful people. the fans in australia are unbelievable. the theater group o worked with, the danger ensemble, was a total fantasy come true. i’m hoping we can do more shows in more places together. and seeing everybody and talking with all our fellow freaks…..it made me hungry to get back on the road and re-connect with everyone on this upcoming tour, i had forgotten how much i miss it until i did it. this upcoming tour is going to be such a perfect love-fest with all our friends on stage with us…sxip and luminescent, my new soul-mate meow meow, our trusty crew….we’re so excited.
it’s time to go to bed. i have a flu to kick and exactly two days to do it.
please send garlic vibes my way.
i can’t wait
merry xmas, happy everything, be safe, drink lots of water…i love you guys.