Now that I’ve experienced prolonged unemployment, a painful break-up, and nearly fatal car explosion (jk?) all within the span of a few months… I think it’s time for my twenty-something Eat Pray Love style melodramatic existential crisis. This is a book/movie I’d hoped I would never have to reference, but here I sit, at work… I ate rice and beans mixed with a soggy veggie burger for dinner last night with a can of Coors Light before walking to an Open Mic night in one of the most pathetically stereotypical starving Los Angeles artist nights of my life.
At Open Mic Night I took a massive bite of a (legal) edible marijuana rice krispy bar midway through the show, assuming I wasn’t going to perform because my name hadn’t been drawn. Not sure why I assumed that. Of course, I got called LAST and by that point was a few beers deep and HIGH AS ALL FUCK. The kind of high where your eyes are red slits and you keep giggling at the salt shakers on your table remembering Mr. Salt and Mrs. Pepper from Blue’s Clues (Luis and Erik if you’re reading this we should totally do them as a joint Halloween costume.) Set still went well, all things considered. No, I didn’t record it… I haven’t recorded ANY since my first one because every single time I go I get all jittery and forget to tell whoever I’m with to record it. IDIOT.
My goal for 2016 was to perform in at least TWO open mic nights. I set the bar low because I didn’t know how long I’d get explosive diarrhea before every performance. Luckily that wore off after I had 7 minutes in front of a basically empty bar where I only got pity laughs (and obligatory laughs from my endlessly supportive and reliable hype man.) Well guess what? I’ve performed 7 times now! Bitches can’t tell me nothin.
If you feel like embarking on your own Eat Pray Love journey, I’ll give you my advice on how to get started. Granted, this is mostly terrible advice coming from a completely uncertified and unqualified source. Make of it what you will.
Spend Some Quality Time With People You Hate: Nothing reminds you of who you are quite like hanging out with people who annoy you. Go to some event where you’ll see a lot of people you’ll hate. For me, this would be one of the following: A fancy networking gala, a CrossFit competition, a zen Yoga Group, an Improv Show, or some sort of seminar on the meat packing industry. I know I’m going to be surrounded by people who share a passion that conflicts with mine, and I’ll be in the minority. Such a reality check, because I can never keep my mouth shut but this forces me to. Sometimes you just need a bunch of people to tell you that you’re wrong, and it’s even more powerful when you HATE the people.
Hobbies, Find Em: I joined two soccer leagues and a flag football league. I try to go to the above referenced open mics at least once per week when I don’t have a soccer game. I also try to set up networking drinks as frequently as I can manage (never.) When you fill your week with activities you have less time to be sad about sleeping alone in your cat litter laden bed (at least you can pretend you went to the beach?) I’m realizing that I actually really enjoy outdoorsy activities, like camping. These hobbies are helping me become ~a more complete woman~
Force Yourself Not to Be An Idiot: You know all those instincts you’ve developed over the years? Your impulse to run from all complicated scenarios? Your tendencies to shut people out when you feel them getting too close? That weird thing where you pick at the skin on your knuckle until you bleed and people ask you if you got into a fight and you have to lie and say your cat scratched you? Your Eat Pray Love period is a great time to try to retrain those. It’s painful as hell and you’re going to feel like a toddler screaming and shitting yourself every day. You might even actually shit yourself- in which case… Give me a call for diaper recs.
Don’t Put Up With Bullshit: When I was in high school I would convince myself that the CLEARLY douchey guy I had a crush on, who by some grace of da lord started to give me attention, was actually a great guy. I asked him if he liked me, he said “I like your ass.” I told him that I didn’t want to just hook up, I wanted commitment, he said “Probably not.” I told him I thought he was smart, funny and talented. He said I was “cool.” And you know what? I thought that was so sweet of him. I was so innocent back then. I wanna go back to that past Katrina and slap her across the face repeatedly. When bullshit presents itself, what do you say to bullshit? “Not Today.”
Quit Making Excuses For Yourself: You wanna lose weight? Stop making up excuses why you can’t go to the gym, and stop eating like a fat fuck. You want to read a book? Stop wasting hours writing political posts on Facebook. You wanna make friends? JOIN SHIT (just please not Improv for the love of God.) You wanna get laid? Spread your legs and watch your back. You’re not too busy. If you’re a twenty-something without children or a significant other, you have nothing but time. I don’t care if you have a job, I have a “job” and I write this blog when I feel like it. The world is your uterus, start building a fetus in it.
Wear Clothes That You’re Comfortable In: I felt obligated to wear jeans today because I wore joggers the other day and everyone made snide remarks about my “sweatpants.” Fair enough, they’re very comfortable. But sometimes after you go on a camping trip and eat copious amounts of burgers, sausages, eggs and bacon (without working out at all, mostly just while drinking beer) your jeans just don’t fit like they used to. I’m walking like a bow legged sailor. Or maybe like a lego man. Or maybe like a wooden doll. Just something that can’t move it’s extremities with ease.
One last nugget of wisdom before I wrap up this breakfast burrito: you really don’t have to Eat, Pray or Love if you don’t want to. Of those three activities, I am only doing one of them. It is Eat. Praying is fine if you’re a religious person or know how to pray to an ambiguous Godlike creature. Loving is cool too- but if you’re in this mess in the first place I’m assuming your heart has turned into a shriveled up black hole like mine. My heart is like a pancake that was left on the griddle for too long. It’s pretty much just charcoal, butter and flour. If you poke my heart it will disintegrate and its ashes will absorb into different parts of my body, giving me some kind of communicable disease that will shorten my lifespan drastically. Please, don’t touch my heart. So of the three things, Eat, Pray, Love… Just make sure to pick one and do it well.
(the above picture is an image of my heart)