Nov 30, 2009

Clairaudient Empath

The title of this note, are words that someone else used to describe me. The fact that there is a terminology for it is interesting. The funny thing is, someone else with the same abilities might be taken to the psychiatric ward of some hospital and called schizophrenic. Others who might not be so open minded might ask... "You hear voices?"

Yes, yes I do.

I wrote all about "The Great Thanksgiving Hamburger Caper", the day that I got off the train - bought 4 happy meals because I had a feeling... and then someone came in asking for money to feed their four children... That was not a product of this ability - I didn't hear a voice tell me to do it... I just suddenly knew I had to do it. I have a lot of those experiences... but that's not what I'm writing about here.

Often, I walk down Michigan Avenue. As I'm walking, I hear what some might think of as a symphony of voices. ((If you've ever seen the show Heroes - think of Matt Parkman - but less focused.)) Happy thoughts come at me like flutes and triangles... little finger cymbals. High tones - light, fluffy, and cute. Angry thoughts come at me like piano... soft but quick tempo. Misery though, misery comes at me like deep booming bass and loud percussion. Now those are metaphors for what I actually hear. Happy thoughts actually do sound like music - those thoughts I don't even hear, really. Angry thoughts are usually drowned out by the sheer amount of misery. Truth is - there are a lot of unhappy people out there.

It's how I know which homeless people want money for drugs or alcohol - and which ones need it for food. Why I sometimes cross a street from the less busy side to the busiest side... because a piano is coming toward me.

I need to say this though. I can't nor would ever want to hear everyone's thoughts. Most of the time I get impressions from people. But when I'm outdoors for some reason, everything gets super amplified. When I walk by a hospital - I have to listen to music or be with people talking about everything and nothing. I also don't hear ALL thoughts. Most people have an ability to shut off something inside of themselves that is broadcasting to me. Sometimes they open their minds and I can hear thoughts. "Hey I was just thinking that!" is a phrase I hear often.

This started when I was in my 20s, the ability to hear misery. Before that I could just feel it. Constantly feeling pain. I still feel it, but I hear it too. Yeah, you're right, it does suck. I have a high tolerance for pain - I have no choice in that matter.

I started a project about a year ago. It's an internal project. I shut off my receptors. That sounds so Sci-Fi doesn't it? I started figuring out how to lessen the feelings - and silence the voices. Now I listen to a much higher and quieter tone... what I call the Universal Tone. Hanging up there, high above the misery and symphony of happiness, sadness, and anger there is another voice. It's a calm voice. Musically - it's a Cello. It's a voice that tells me when I should pay attention, if I should turn left or right, or whether a mom on the bus with me is 2 seconds away from smacking her child... so I should maybe go over there and see if I can defuse things before they get ugly. If the collective consciousness had a voice - the one I hear would be it. It's so much better to focus on the ONE than the ALL - better still when the ALL joins to form a ONE.

The feelings - I've just learned to live with. I shake them off. How? I boogie. iBoogie! Movement can move negative energy around - so I listen to music and bop my head - tap my feet and wiggle my ass. Not only is it fun, but it shakes off the pain.

So, next time you see me on Michigan Avenue... be happy! And when you see me boogie in the street, you'll now know why.

Conversations with REAL people.

You ever have a conversation with someone and you share intimate details of your life with, and you know this is a friend for life. This is someone that, while you won't necessarily break bread with or whatever, they are yours, not in the possessive sense, but in some weird spiritual sense. They have admitted that they think more of you than you'd assume they would.

Sure, you are interesting, and people who don't know anything about you gravitate toward you like some sort of magnet. But, as one of these "Magnets" there are few people whom you feel you have a connection to. You, whoever you are, know yourself. You know that the people you are attracted to are usually real people who make your mind awaken. You know you, and you know the people who you are drawn towards.

Sometimes, conversations are just conversations. But sometimes, for whatever reason, conversations are some sort of intercourse with someone else's soul. Sometimes, a conversation is a spiritual journey that you and whomever you are speaking to take together. Sometimes, magic happens. Be aware of it, it's awesome.

Tonight, for some reason, I had one. I had a conversation that started as benign and ended up being amazing. You are now a thought this person might have - not necessarily tomorrow or even tonight... but at some point this person will remember something said and either smile, or be pensive. You have awakened something inside them, and them inside you and you won't forget it as long as you live. Cherish this moment. Please. Remember that ever conversation you have with someone, when you reveal your inner you, is a moment that they will cherish. It might not be outwardly at all, but in their mind they will have learned about themselves from something you said.

I had one of those tonight. I hope you have one too.

Nov 29, 2009

more Stalkers.

What in the world is it about people like me? Look, I get it. I'm interesting. I have tattoos, and piercings (though not many of those). I have Emmy awards, and can make a model of an atom out of 62 folded sheets of paper, I can knit and sew, I can sing, and dance, and paint, and I'm effing awesome. Sure, I'm funny, and smart, and people like me. If you haven't noticed I'm also full of myself. Now take all the amazing that is me and realize this.

I don't like you.

Well, let me rephrase. I love people but at the same time I don't really like people... note though, when I say people I don't mean humanity - humanity I love. I don't mean my friends, if I put you in that circle of people I actually call friends, then I probably love you. But, here's the trick to knowing whether I call you a friend or not... and whether I call you one or whether you assume you are one are completely different animals. If I call you a friend, you'll hear me call your name more than once. I probably have a nickname or multiple nicknames for you. If I love you, I'll act like a complete ass in front of you and probably apologize for it at some point. If you have ever heard the following phrases come out of my mouth, you fall into that category:

"I love you."
"I'm so sorry."
"What do I do to make people want to stalk me?"

Also, if I have done any of the following things, you also fall into that category:

Given you a gift on NO occasion.
Spoken to you frankly about something going on in your life or mine - something you probably wouldn't talk about with someone on the street.
Said something to you and then later clarified, not because it was in my best interest to do so, but because I didn't want you to worry.
Made something for you.

Now, these aren't hard and fast rules. And who am I to say that you, if you fall into one of the aforementioned categories of things I've said or done, consider me YOUR friend. But here's the question:


Why does some woman I've met once follow me to multiple places on any given Tuesday?
Why does some random co-worker (and this has happened more than once) think I'm ever going to date them, or do ANYTHING with them - ever?
Why do random people follow me around like I'm their alpha?
And why, why for all that's holy, do people think that I'm into them?

Here's a secret. For me to be into you, you have to be special. For me to be into you you have to have a personality that isn't needy, socially awkward, or grating. You can be okay with hunting, but not necessarily a gun owner. You can't just show up at my house for a party, stay late, and take off all your clothes. You can't just assume that I'm single and think you're going to go home with me at the end of any given night - because truth be told, even if I DID like you, that's not my M.O.. No amount of liquor is going to change that. You HAVE to have tattoos, more than one. You have to like a book or movie I like, and without knowing that I like that book or movie in advance. We have to have a shared sense of humor. And most importantly - you can't assume that I like you because as I said at the beginning of this post, I probably don't.

I'm done with it. I'm done with being stalked, groped, and petted. I'm done with people assuming that because I'm single, I'm theirs to have and to hold. I'm done with socially awkward freaks attaching themselves to me. I'm done with people thinking that I'm their shade tree when the sun is too bright. I'm done with people thinking that I'm their umbrella when it is raining. If you fall into the category of people who I deem important enough for me to be either of those things to, you don't have to seek it out or make it happen, I'll be there for you with no question or hesitation. But if you're stalking me, step back. Please.

Nov 26, 2009


I give thanks. I give thanks for my family, my friends - both new and old, my talents, my co-workers, my job. I give thanks for all of the amazing things that have yet to happen in my life but I know will. I give thanks for all the amazing things that have happened in my life - with or without intending for them to happen. I give thanks for my health. I give thanks for the gifts I am given every day by amazing people... I give thanks for the love I receive - and the love I am able to give out. I give thanks for the air I breathe. I give thanks to you... the grand universe.

Nov 24, 2009

Falling into Like.

Have you ever fallen into like? Some of the kids I work with make me laugh when they say they are in love with some random actor - funnier still is that they mention the character and not the actual actor's name. "I'm in love with Edward." Oh boy.

Well, I've fallen into like. I don't know the person enough to use that other 4-letter "L" word - and being a 4-letter "L" word myself, I know the importance of steering clear of that other one until I know it is truly that. But "like" like is something I don't fear falling into because you can't be disappointed with "like".

There's also a difference between the "Like" and the "Crush." Let me explain this thought process. When you have a crush, it's usually someone you don't know all that well, necessarily. Someone who you find physically or mentally attractive, sometimes both - you start crushing. Often the crush gets crushed when you get to actually know that person... sometimes the crush becomes 'like'.

I have a friend who has crossed over. I realize how often this person's name escapes my lips. How there is a smile in this person's eyes and for some reason that smile can make me at peace and incredibly uncomfortable at the same time. More importantly, that if I'm at my wit's end just hearing this person's voice can completely calm me. This person is a rock star. I'm sitting in the front row.

I'm in like. It's not pretty - at all. It's not pretty because, first of all, who knows what this person's feelings for me are. I know they have ceased being pedestrian, but there are many variations of like. Although, I know for a fact that there is reciprocal "Like" going on... just which variation on that 4 letter word it is can be hard to tell. If it's the benign like of friendships, that's great. I like friends and will get over this giddy girl BS probably within the week. If it's more than that - that's great too. For now though, fantasy and flirting is more than enough, after all - that's the fun part. The magic that happens in one's head is always better than the reality that ensues, don't ya think?

So here's to Fact, Fiction, and Fantasy.

Nov 23, 2009


When a mouth smiles, it doesn't always include the eyes.
When the eyes smile, the soul rejoices.

Nov 22, 2009

Happiness is not a warm gun...

Sometimes, especially when I'm in the middle of a series of anxiety attacks, I find it's hard to put a smile on my face. This is usually the time that I find myself trying to put a smile on the faces of others. Making someone else turn the corners of their lips upward can actually change my entire outlook on the day.

Saturday / Sunday nights are my most difficult days at work. Saturday nights my blood pressure can go from 0 to 60 in 2.4 seconds. There is no reason for me to state why this happens on this blog, just know that it does. Sunday nights are actually fun at work. Sunday nights are stress free up until the last show of the day. Sports Sunday is not a walk in the park to direct, I rarely get angry during that show, although occasionally the anchors will completely ignore me and that's wildly irritating. But, the truth is that the days of the week that most people are off and dealing with their every day lives, those are the days I work and am most stressed.

This Saturday was truly no exception. So, I started a gift giving process that started at 3pm and lasted until about Midnight. I gifted things to co-workers, my friends at the Spoke, and all of these gifts gave back to me. Making someone else smile, even for a short second, made me burst with happiness. Saturday included a ball of stress, during the day - so I started it out by giving people little gifts. Nothing outrageous, just something they'd like or something they needed. I had ordered some stuff for my friends at the bar that I was considering saving until Christmas, but I prefer to give gifts for no reason than to give a gift because I feel obligated to. I think the little presents I gave Natalie, Kelly, and Alex made me smile the most. Natalie seemed utterly confused as to why I'd give her a gift. Little does Natalie know that I'd rather work with her than a lot of the producers I know. Like me, she maintains a calm demeanor in the control room, even when things are at their worst. Kelly spent the night texting me thanks, and much like the commercial every time my phone received one confetti poured out of it. Alex looked like a 7 year old that just got the latest action figure, seriously.

The truth is, brightening someone else's day can make the sun shine in the middle of the darkest night. It doesn't take much, just something thoughtful. So go - gift something to someone. Then watch them smile - and notice you are smiling too.

Nov 19, 2009

I guess...

There was nothing to fear. I went in expecting to get 1 tooth pulled, and he yanked as many as he could get his grubby little hands on. But the positive thing here is, I still have all the feeling in my mouth - yay.

Actually the upper wisdoms were not bad at all - he literally grabbed and yanked and done. The bottoms though... fuck. Here's the thing, I'm not into drugs. I went in and had it all in my head to tell them to gas me and put me under and knock me in the head with a club if they had to. I thought, "you don't want to be awake for this." But I was.

The bottom right was pretty ridiculous. It was partially erupted and coming in sideways so, unlike the tops - it wasn't a straight pull. He had to drill it, break it, and pull it out one shard at a time. Did I mention that I was awake and had nothing but some novocaine to numb the area? Yeah. I had my wisdoms done under a local anesthetic only. I am an idiot.

The last 2 days have been pretty painful, swollen, and gross. I've slept a lot because of the painkillers I'm on. I'm about to go back to sleep now. The worst is over though. I think. It's day 3 - the worst better be over.

Nov 14, 2009

The difference between pictures and photos...

I used to think that it was way more important to try and take photos. On vacation, I thought the most important thing to capture was the place - that place you might never visit again - that place that captured your breath for a moment. I always thought, well, the people that I meet I'll always remember but the nuances of the place - the feelings I had while I was there, those can be remembered while glancing at a photo of that place.

This morning I went through my vast collection of photos, snapshots, and pictures of my life. I found myself shuffling through the images of places and pausing when I got to the images of people. "Wow look how young we look!" or "Oh my God, I haven't seen him (or her) in a long time!" or "I miss them so much!" Not one of the images of a place made me feel that way. The pictures of places made me think something more along the lines of "Meh, hey I remember being on our way to that State Fair in Alabama and stopping at a Kroger's and being shocked that they sold Malta!" Granted, no where do I have a picture of the guys on the tour bus drinking the malta, or the horrified faces they made when they smelled it. Those pictures would be priceless.

Prince fans on the other hand, I have tons of pictures of. I realize why though, and it's said. Cameras weren't allowed inside Paisley Park, and all the images I have from inside the park were taken for the website, and even in those pictures there are humans in the shots.

I have tons of pictures of Puerto Rico, a place I go to constantly and truly have no need for images of it. I can close my eyes and be there instantly. I have 3 pictures of my grandmother who is now gone, bless her soul. I have 2 pictures of my stepmother - who is no longer with us either. I have 47 pictures of the front of my Dad's house. Explain this to me!

I have countless pictures of the Chicago Skyline, but only 3 pictures of me with my childhood best friend Dahlia. I can't even find any pictures of my friends from grade school, nor any from high school either. The images I have of people are plentiful, don't get me wrong. But they are far out numbered by pictures of places.

I think I have something like 700 photos taken out of a car window in Boston, a place that I never ever want to see again. I have no pictures of Rhode Island, a place that I believe might be one of the most beautiful in the continental U.S. I've been an idiot with pictures. I'm going to start carrying a camera and documenting all of my friends. It's time I stopped taking pictures of random places, and started taking pictures of beautiful people.

Nov 8, 2009



Someone read the post above and thanked me for giving them a voice. I have to thank them for reminding me that it's out there for anyone to read. It was brave to post it the first time, but there's a certain courage in knowing that it's there as long as this website is up.

I started this website back in 1995. Back then, it was a silly page with animated Prince symbols that floated around and linked you to garbage. Then this site became a repository for my poetry - which I truly need to update as all of those "poems" are either horrible or old as dirt. Before "blogging" was cool, I changed it up again, this time to a little diary page where I'd post pictures and stories. Then I started posting photos and digital artwork. In 2003, I got tired of it all and opted to add an actual "blog" to the page.

At the time, I didn't know what that actually meant... this "blog". I didn't know where it would go. If you go back and read some of the old entries, a lot of them don't even make sense. They are non-sequiturs - little blurbs of crap. You can tell what was going on in my life at the time, and how I've grown up a lot in the last 6 years. There are all the photos of my friends - having fun. Some of these photos have been photoshopped to protect the guilty, and I'm clearly not stupid enough to post any of myself doing anything I'd regret posting.

There are raging posts about things that angered me. Posts of love when I was married. Posts that took brass clangers to write, and some that took a lot more to actually post. The Bravery post, that one took a lot out of me. Sure, it was posted as a note on Facebook first, it took more bravery to post it there as the audience is immediate. Reposting it here gave it permanence, and that took courage. Courage that comes in knowing that once I post something I rarely delete it. Courage that comes in knowing who I am and not making apologies for it.

Leo Buscaglia, The Spoke, and Laughter

There are people that enter your life for the shortest little moments to remind you of things like - who you really are, the truth of your character, and to continue to breathe. Last night, I was angry. That's an understatement, I was beyond angry. I had some good news delivered to me, chased by someone passing their negativity on to me like a fucking olympic torch. Blah. It stuck to me like toilet paper on a shoe, and I couldn't shake it off.

I got to the Spoke and I sit down and start to offload my misery. But it's still there, I'm still pissed - even when I am told, "oh fuck 'em, you should be happy!" So, I sit and get cursed once again with the Maggie moniker... Maggie, meaning magnet for crazy folk. Every time that moniker gets thrown at me - it's literally like a curse. I went outside before the curse hit, thinking that outside I'd be safe. Boy was I wrong.

Then I had the Buscaglia moment. A man with maybe 3 or 4 teeth in his mouth, who is clearly advanced in age, walks up to me and says, "Hi, you look happy." Now, without realizing it, I was. Not because I was throwing back cocktails, but because after 15-20 minutes of laughing inside the Spoke, the negative crap - the toilet paper - finally shook off. I hadn't even noticed.

"I guess I am happy," I replied, almost shocked at the notion that my anger had disappeared.

"That's great, better to be happy - because life is too short!" He was spewing out cliché happiness and love quotes like a drunk who can't handle his liquor. But the truth is, that little man reminded me of two all important things:

1. Happiness is something you can be without needing anyone to give you anything to change that. Happiness isn't spontaneous, it's a choice you can make.

2. There is no reason to be angry when someone else lays their negative shit on you.

Granted, the silly toothless man didn't say either of those things. And I laughed rather hard when my friend said, "I feel like I'm suddenly in a Leo Buscaglia book." I mean seriously, that's hilarious - who the fuck pulls that literary reference out of their ass? Truth is ultimate and funny - and I might revisit some Buscaglia - as I haven't read him since I was a kid - and only then because my Mom had his books on her shelf. But answer me, how could one not read a book called simply, "Love"? One thing I'll always remember - because it stuck with me for a long time...

Love is always open arms. If you close your arms about love you will find that you are left holding only yourself. -LB

Nov 6, 2009

Stalkers and weirdos.

A friend of mine, if I dare use that term, is being stalked by what I can only describe as a sad yet creepy man. That doesn't really do the situation justice so I'll be a little more descriptive. Picture in your mind's eye - the grown up version of the kid in your grammar school class that you swore would grow up to be a serial killer some day. Add to that the look of Stephen King in the late 80s, and sprinkle in the aura of American Psycho - the literary version not the movie version. Now this creature you've created in your head - let's add some more to him - give him a gun and a job that makes that gun perfectly legal. Now, we're not done quite yet and I bet you're already creeped out. The final piece, add a hint of neediness - and make him as socially awkward as possible. Note the visual aid.

Last night, I was standing outside of my local watering hole with my friend Kelly. As we're outside I get this feeling in the pit of my stomach. Something Wicked This Way Comes. I look to my left and in the distance see the creep-mobile. One simple U-Turn and he's parked in front of us. All of the blood drains from my head and hands, and it's not even me he's stalking. My friend, however, had departed a little early for the evening so he was in the clear, but there I stood, armed with only nouns and verbs - staring in the face of - well that dude you just created in your mind's eye.

I informed him that the person he was looking for was not there. And then...

"Well, I'm sorry he's not here because I actually came to apologize to the both of you for Sunday night."

As the words poured out of his mouth like molasses out of a barrel, I couldn't help but step in the mess being created by them. My thoughts sticking to the sidewalk. Shoes of verbs stuck in the viscous glue. Seriously, what do you say to that? What can you possibly say that won't invite the evil to continue the conversation or worse.

I opened my mouth to reply and bees poured out. Bees brandishing their stingers like warriors preparing for battle. But something held them back. They got caught in the molasses, their little wings stuck.

"Don't worry about it. But thanks."

More was said, but the important thing is that I didn't spew word vomit at him, nor did I shoot cocktail daggers into his eyes.