Detective Work Part II

If it weren’t too late I’d finish off getting an MFA, or move to getting an MA in sociology.

My favorite musical instrument is my voice.

The amount of money I spend on entertainment for myself each month is a baseline of $30.

If I weren’t so stingy with my artist I’d buy her that goofy kid fashion studio kit with the miniature dressform. Also, I’d send her to drawing lessons at that studio on Golden Gate Park.

Taking time out for myself is difficult to well nigh impossible lately. Too many high need relationships, but not a lot of relationships that support my needs.


Week 3: Detective Work Part I


Dividing this into three parts for my own sanity.

Favorite childhood toy: Usually a doll – Sally, Snoopy, a Raggedy Ann. X-files of course ruined them all for me. Looking back I think I really wanted a real best friend, the kind I never truly got.

Favorite childhood game: Badminton. It was one that was dependent on cooperation and concentration – it seemed like a good mental reset, and usually led to me getting on well with my sibling.

Best movie I ever saw as a kid was Clash of the Titans. I still haven’t watched the remake. I think it seeded the possibility of Paganism in my mind, even if I now do often feel quite unpleasantly like a chess piece that gets moved around.

I don’t do it much but I enjoy collage. I was resistant to it at first, working through Vein of Gold, but it’s actually both effective therapeutically and magically. I’ve been trying to find time and space to do it lately – I forget how much prep is actually involved though.

If I could lighten up a little, I’d let myself go to one of those TV writers meetups. I’m utterly daunted by the writing scene here which is why I’ve barely entered it as of yet.

Week 2: Check In

Let me be clear: I am not pushing myself to finish each chapter in a week. I take a week of the Artist’s Way as more of a fortnight. It’s a “get there when I get there” type of situation. To some degree I intent to teach it that way, too.

1. Morning pages: 6/7 – got sidetracked with trying to keep up with health issues. The main challenge is that I am SO not a morning person. I’m hitting on some big issues right now, the type that I probably should take to my therapist, although one definitely isn’t preventable. First, I struggle with feeling wanted/welcome. This is the core of my usually well masked social anxiety. I am not sure I am welcomed or wanted by the people around me – so I manage by forming my own groups, looking for people who also struggle to have friends, etc. although there are exceptions to this in recent years. Half of my leadership stuff is because I am simply afraid to join in with another group for fear I won’t be wanted, not really, or for fear that they will want to control pieces of my life that are mine, like my writing career. (That last one has actually happened more than once in the past, giving it an air of legitimate fear.) My second issue, more disturbing and much more difficult to pin down to resolve, is that in my adult life, every single boyfriend I have had since I was 18 has had some sort of sexual dysfunction – I am counting raging misogyny as sexual dysfunction, since it usually guarantees a lousy bed partner. This is a pattern I’d like to break, especially since recent events in my life have informed me I am not done with the whole finding-new-partners-for-sex part of my life, whether I like it or not. There is something I am attracted to that is fundamentally broken, so I need to figure out what that is – or maybe I just need to do a whole bunch of jinx-clearing magic. Often the magic itself leads to the realization of the problem anyway, so it’s worth pursuing.

2. I did do my artist’s date last week – I went to the Japantown Mall on Friday, and got lost back on the west side. I think I need to wander around Japantown a little more in general. I left visually overwhelmed, and with a new purse along with a penguin pendant for my wife. I’d go there for the giant Daiso and Ichiban-Ya anyway – decent beauty products, cheap. But if I ever need to go shopping for gifts, it’s a new favorite go-to even though it doesn’t charm me the way ethnic groceries do.

3. My biggest issues right now are time management/transit, followed closely by the internal psychological things going on. Fortunately I have a good therapist who can help me with a lot of issues – but I also need to work on getting some balance in my local life. I’m aware of withdrawn from my Minnesota friends, especially. I also realize I have some hard things to say about my current situation as the somewhat unwilling wife of a trans partner. There are one or two local people that I can connect with and speak to easily, but often the liberal politics are a block to actual connection rather than a connector like they are in Minnesota. So I have more interaction with bed buddies than I do with sane, normal, social interaction. Admittedly the kink scene is soooo much saner than the vanilla scene, but it’s still stressful, especially with few firmly platonic friends to talk about it with.

Week 2: 10 Tiny Changes

Small changes I can make:
On Geary Blvd #sanfrancisco #unicorn

  1. Add a towel bar above the toilet
  2.  Get proper hand towels
  3. New underwear – a bit of my own stuff has gone to the wayside with my spouse’s transition
  4. Go get a massage from that gorgeous Chinese masseusse that oddly does shiatsu
  5. Get a pedicure
  6. Clean the refrigerator
  7. Get a new air filter/get the current one repaired
  8. Add my skincare routine to the calendar again
  9. Obtain a Go Card and give myself that tourist-style tour of the city I’ve been meaning to get
  10. Get that Bay Area Pagan meetup group started

PS: A hair trim/appt wouldn’t hurt, either.

Week 2: 5 more imaginary lives

Man in greenhouse Arboretum?

1. Bellydance instructor

That seems to be giving way to other things since I am far more interested in dance than I am in performance. Since performance is a measure, I have started leaning deeper into ecstatic dance despite wanting to learn more of the bellydance movement vocabulary. I performed and perform enough in my life. I need one less place where I have to be “on.”

2. Domme

This…is becoming a real possibility, actually. It’s also another place of having to be “on” which is why I’ve sidestepped it.

3. Occult shop owner

this is one of my happy little fantasies, even as I know the work itself would be relentless and consuming – stocking, book keeping, promoting, booking events, dealing with projections from the neighborhood – it’s all a lot. Especially since I would want to tie it in with a full service greenhouse and perfumery. That’s one hell of a lot.

4. Venture capitalist

I would only specialize in plus size fashions and superhero toys based on women. Actually one could well feed the other. I still have some ideas for developing City Center in Minneapolis.

5. Politician

I plan to do all the things short of felonies that should make it really, really difficult to be elected to public office and make all the things I did part of my platform. Things are happening where this could actually be true.


20 things I love doing

Activity                               Date tried

Pinball Hall of Fame
1.                 Dancing                                  every Tuesday night

2.                Singing/Karaoke                  not since we moved

3.                Collage work not since we moved

4.               Reading Fridays, but would like to do more

5.               Baking once since we moved

6.              Gardening not since we moved

7.               Witchy-tool making this week

8.            Photography in earnest? Not for over a year

9.             T-shirt surgery last week

10.        Trying out crafts off my Pinterest board yesterday

11.         Playing pinball last week

12.        Exploring museums last week

13.        Writing poetry once since we moved

14.       Experimenting with spells and ritual seriously not really – and I want to construct a battery of health and healing spells

15.      Sketching/drawing (want to take a class) not for years

16.      Playing with clay not seriously for over a year

17.      Meditating two days ago

18.     Blogging now

19.     Writing fiction not since last year – I have a second draft novel and a first draft play just sitting

20.    People watching 2-3 weeks ago

Week 2: Time Audit

My main activities in the last week have been:
Image from page 59 of "Higher psychical development (Yoga philosophy) : an outline of the secret Hindu teachings" (1920)

  1. Yoga
  2. Skype conversations/social media
  3. Face to face meetings with new people
  4. Making rose beads
  5. Getting from point A to point B, and then back to point A again. This has by far consumed the most time.

If I were to strike two from the list, 2 and 5 could go – although 2 has its own significant value to me, which I can discuss later in the week.

There are also significant chunks of time that go to listening and caretaking for my partner, especially lately as a lot of the old teamwork has slide away for reasons to be explained soon.

How much time went to each one –

yoga, a minimum of 15 minutes a day, Skype – too much time, although much of it is also during transit time, 3, one or two evenings a week which seems good, 4, mostly a one or two off thing and it is very, very time consuming so won’t happen often, and 5 it’s a minimum of 3 hours round trip every time I hop on the bus. I may benefit from learning more about what’s in the Sunset as that’s a shorter bus ride for me. Or not, who knows?

Artist’s Way: 5 Other Lives

You’d think this would be easier for me than it once was. It’s not.
Snap Out of Your Stupor
(image from Wackystuff on Flickr)

5 other careers/lives I might enjoy/imagine:
1. A burlesque dancer.
Not really new for me, but it still seems like so so much fun.
2. A tour guide.
Seriously, that seems like fun work. I worked as a volunteer museum docent in high school and it was ridiculous. But a place that is well planned? That could be fun.
3. A character actress.
Actually, there are opportunities for people of all body types where I live now. I’m genuinely considering it.
4. An archivist
There’s something calming about daily acts of historical preservation – no to mention all the dirt I can get.
5. A boxer
It’s ridiculously risky, but it looks so gratifying. I am opting to start weight lifting so there’s that.

Artist’s Way: a letter in my defense

A Letter from Home
Dear Universal Editor:

Teachers are like cops. They either get in for all the right reasons or they’re exactly the kind of people that you just don’t want in that field. That’s what I got with those three elementary teachers, and several other teachers along the way. I know from hearing the stories of others that it isn’t just crappy teachers in public schools. Nuns appear to be a particularly vicious phenomenon, and by now we’ve all heard about the conditions of the field of Catholic priesthood, the non-behavioral regulation of private schools, and the government interference that makes it impossible for the good teachers to even hang on and teach.

I know from my own experience that really, most teachers  are bigots. I got treated poorly, as though my own contributions were somehow invalid or faked, until I encountered a teacher who raised a fat kid herself, and who probably was a fat kid at some point. I’m positive that my grades were at least half a point higher than what I was given by my kindergarten, first grade and fifth grade teachers. I’m also certain that as more children of color started attending those schools, their bigotry focused more on them. Now, I know I had good teachers – and they were few, and far between, and easily burned out as punishment for actually caring.

After all, kids of color are more likely to be disciplined and denied their education. I was just the fat kid around before the people with darker skin showed up.

I know what happened to me, and I know it had nothing to do with what I created, what I turned in, what work I did – after all, I would turn in things that were smart, right on and funny alongside my thin male counterpart and his would be praised for “humor” while I would be docked for “attitude” despite relevance to the lessons. So no, the problem was never me. I did my very best, but my teachers did not make an effort to be their very best, and took out their own fears of having a fat body and their own assumptions of my laziness over the very clearly hard work I put in front of them.

So in my defense – I was an awesome student.

My teachers at T-Ball, however, sucked ballz. Given their bigotry towards me and towards the poor kids in class, they had no business teaching at all.

– Diana

25 Wishes

Priestess of Delphi by John Collier Probably the one I have the most in common with of all the great ancient priestesses.

Priestess of Delphi by John Collier
Probably the one I have the most in common with of all the great ancient priestesses.

1. I wish I could get around the city easier.

2. I wish I had more friends here – a lot more friends.

3. I wish I could find the more hidden occult shops.

4. I wish I spoke Spanish/remembered Spanish better.

5. I wish I had friends to go dancing with.

6. I wish I could finally polish off my reading stack. Someday, someway.

7. I wish I could find a writing program I can afford.

8. I wish I could find poets that were as amazing as my poetry group in Minnesota.

9. I wish I knew exactly where I wanted to point my career right now.

10. I wish I didn’t feel an obligation tug of war with Fat Chic.

11. I wish I could finish this consent culture essay and feel right about it.

12. I wish I had more time to stretch and see to my physical health every day.

13. I wish I could do all the exercise, all the social, and all the professional things I need to do.

14. I wish I had more time for that Lynda thing – it’s not really working out in terms of time commitment. :(

15. I wish I didn’t feel so overwhelmed all the time.

16. I wish Mike and I could both establish strong support systems out here.

17. I wish there was more Pagan stuff in SF itself, but since almost no one can afford it…

18. I wish I could find a decent therapist out here.

19. I wish I could feel at peace with the rest of my past. I’ve buried the crap with my family, now it’s the stuff that I’m actually culpable for.

20. I wish I could fly up to see my friend Joe.

21. I wish I could travel to see Lisa and Tonya – they are all in that direction too.

Wait a minute, they are all in that direction. Why am I still sitting here?

22. I wish I had a clear sense of my place with my volunteer gig.

23. I wish I had some form of steady income of my own again.

24. I wish I could overcome my 1:1 social anxiety issues.

25. I wish I could take a vacation on my own – or maybe get in on a writer’s retreat. Maybe after I do that portfolio.