“Watering the plants one more time,” by Sasha at her desk

Wednesday, October 31, 2012
5 minutes

There’s a list on the table, on a small stretched canvas, painted in acrylic, sometimes mixed with a matte medium, often in greens and oranges, occasionally reds and purples. She paints her lists. This says something wacky and whimsical about her, doesn’t it? When a task is done – “Make zucchini muffins for Zoe” – she puts a star beside it, in metallic gold. A wall in her study is devoted to these lists, these things she’s done with her days, these small yet joyful accomplishments. Sometimes, when she’s feeling void of usefulness, she’ll write something particularly simple – “Water the plants one more time” – or – “Take a deep breath”. Clive used to laugh at her, but in a loving way. “Really, Betsy? Why aren’t you doing portraits anymore? You’re so talented…” She couldn’t bring herself to say that she couldn’t paint faces anymore because the only face she saw, the only face she could paint, over and over, was Jamie’s. She would smile at her husband, his bald spot spreading across the top of his head like a joke on all of them, and say, “I prefer painting lists.”

“escape with us” by Sasha at her kitchen table

Tuesday, October 30, 2012
5 minutes
Classical Theatre Project 2012-2013 Season Brochure

I don’t know what to do, Glen. I’ve never been in a… situation like this before. Don’t blame it on the divorce or menopause or whatever you’re about to say… I’ve been seeing this patient for two months, twice a week. He’s… a tough guy. A “Tough Guy”. He identifies with that. He has anger issues. Big time. He came to me because it was court ordered… There’d been a restraining order issued against him from his ex-girlfriend… Anyway, he opens up to me today and says… this is confidential okay, Glen? He says that he stabbed a guy when he was eighteen and it’s haunted him since. He sees a correlation between this stabbing and the anger, he says that before he wasn’t an angry kid he was just a hard-done-by kid… No father, mother into drugs, he had to look after his younger sisters… you know the story. And I’m… No, I’m not saying that… I think it might help him heal if we could track down this guy he stabbed and get them together to… I don’t know, talk? Hear eachother out? You think I’m crazy…

“escape with us” by Julia at Saving Gigi

Tuesday, October 30, 2012 at Saving Gigi
5 minutes
Classical Theatre Project 2012-2013 Season Brochure

-Honesty could save us both here. We’re in the wild and we’re on our way to either dying or forgetting we’re alive.
-What would you rather do, babe?
-The first one!
-Are you sure? Is it because it’s romantic?
-No. It’s hardly romantic.
-But if we do it together?
-Then it’s a tragedy, remember?
-Oh, right. I have forgotten everything already. I have already done the second one.
-No you haven’t, you’re still talking, still dreaming. Still alive.
-But I have forgotten everything. I even forgot we were here, that we were talking, that we were alive.
-How could you forget? I have answered you, you didn’t make me up. I’m here.
-How do I know?
-Because I am. I’m telling you.
-I thought you wanted honesty.
-I do! You’re not being honest! You’re lying to me so you can lie to yourself!
-Who said that….?
-I did. I DI—oh. Stop. Please don’t pretend stuff like that. I’m here, you’re here, we’re not dead yet.
-Maybe it’s better if we act like we are. Maybe we’ll learn something about ourselves.
-Yeah, sure, let’s try it.
-Not sarcastically.
-I know, I wasn’t. I know what you mean.
-I’m being honest now.
-Yes, good, okay, so what should we do?
-I don’t know anything anymore.
-You’re giving up?
-You asked me to. You gave me the choice and this one was just better.
-Okay. So do you have any gin?

“Blink… Can if you try” by Julia at R Squared

Monday, October 29, 2012 at R Squared
5 minutes
Chaos Come Again
Wilhemina Baird

Ding! Chicken’s up! I’m going to feed you so hard it’s going to make you go mental in the face. You’ll be impressed. By me. Because I’m about to knock the sense out of your head into next Tuesday. This chicken is going to make you into a better person. It’s going to make you see God. It’s my first whole chicken. And I have a feeling it’s going to be my last because after this we’re both just going to fall down dead all over the place. IN ECSTASY. What a trip.

I’m over selling, I realize, but you’re on your way out of my life and I have to get drastic. Get dramatic. Get Extreme. Try to find ways to keep you within arms reach. To keep you from dissolving into a sea of apology and offers of a really incredible slew of blow jobs. I won’t close my eyes in case blinking makes it easier for you to go. I don’t want to miss the moment where I’m supposed to beg for you, be desperate for you, convince you.

It’s still coming, isn’t it? Don’t you want to try this chicken? This last-stitch effort to…

“Blink… Can if you try” by Sasha at R Squared

Monday, October 29, 2012 at R Squared
5 minutes
Chaos Come Again
Wilhemina Baird

Shake shake shake
Twist turn roll away
Tummy aches move the heartaches away from the place of origin
Migrant workers on the California peach farm
Pesticide hallucination
Making murals of sons and daughters on the leaves
Just there
So so close
My baby
In Mexico.
Shake shake shake
Twist turn roll away
Drum tabacco cigarettes
Formed with the tactile finger specificity of a surgeon
Scalpel please
Paging one two three four
The phone is ringing
In ears
A marry-go-round song
Dizzy and afraid
They’re waiting at the Bus Stop
Taking the 86 to Downtown
Taking the L Train to Brooklyn
Cruising down the DVP
Sunset Strip
Cruising down the Highway body
Below the belt
Below the surface
The plates shift violent
Angry at our indiscretions.

“The Anti-Aging Shop” by Sasha on her couch

Sunday October 28, 2012
5 minutes
The Anti-Aging Shop
At Belmont and Davenport

I’m not really sure how to feel about your masquerade antics, Jon. It really caught me off guard. One minute you’re telling me that you’re thinking about going to this place… this “club” and then before I can even ask any questions you’re buying a whole… outfit… with a mask! And a whip! I mean… we’ve been married for eighteen years, honey… You’ve never so much as hinted at desiring… I just… I feel like I don’t know you.

You know where I was this afternoon? Why there isn’t dinner ready? I was at that Anti-Aging Shop at Belmont and Davenport. I was checking out the… Chemical peels. I just… Jon, if you want me to go to one of those parties I’m going to have to lose about thirty pounds! And get a facelift! I know that those girls there are not… well, that’s just it. They are girls. I am a forty three year old dignified woman, Jon.

“The Anti-Aging Shop” by Julia on her couch

Sunday October 28, 2012

5 minutes
The Anti-Aging Shop
At Belmont and Davenport


Yes, this is my hope. To be beautiful for eternity to say “Hello old friend master clock, you’re looking mighty good these days, and me? Ahh, me? Why thank you for noticing!”
The pleasant aging process, one for me that I tell you now has just been a delight. I even got ID’ed at the liquor store on Wednesday! Can you believe it? I don’t even remember how old I am! What a strange and wonderful thing! I found a secret. Oh, should I be bad and just tell you?! Okay, fine, you seduced me into it!
It’s this new shop–opened up right down the street from Freddie’s Fashions. It’s an Anti-Aging Shop! No! That’s the name of the store! Inside is like being transported through time! Through this time and all the way back to last time or another time or a time that happened years ago, or just one year ago! It’s almost magic, dare I say it!? I dare! Magic! There’s a honeycomb puree! And I’m not making that up. You take a sip of it from the fountain! At the end of your shopping exploration, you simply pay at the counter. They take cash, credit, or your first born! It’s so wonderful it makes you want to never leave! And the results are quite astonishing! I haven’t been this happy since…God! I don’t know when!

“the dark hug of time” by Julia on the 506 going east

Saturday October 27, 2012
5 minutes
Poem (the spirit likes to dress up)
Mary Oliver

Oh Angels in heaven, please hear my cry.
Is it now or is it never that I will be coming home? I have to know. I’m not well. I’ve been dancing between medications: the elixir of life and the poison of death. Poison has all these negative connotations. But I’m saying it’s a healing drink. I’m saying it’s the dark embrace, the hug of hours, minutes, seconds.
Will you take a man who knows he’s already done all his living? He knows! He’s telling you! He needs to be with his Angel family now. The one that took off and flew above his head before he was ready to go with them. I am that man. I am caught in between a lie and a hard place. It feels good to be loved here, but not as good as it will to be loved on a cloud. On a cloud of forever not a bed of tick tock-stop-the-clock-he’s-here-till-his- heart-shuts-off.
Oh Angels in heaven, hear your daddy cry, your son, your brother, your husband, your best friend. I will wait here in this body until someone sets me free. Till I can be living safe with you all or one of you all in the peacefulness of life well-lived. Of death well-earned.

“the dark hug of time,” by Sasha at her desk

Saturday October 27, 2012
5 minutes
Poem (the spirit likes to dress up)
Mary Oliver

The dark hug of time is around her eyes, her shoulders, her thighs. Since the surgery she walks less and smokes more, but it’s okay, we’re all at peace with it now. We used to shame her and send her threatening notes with newspaper articles attached, usually with a blue paperclip, her favorite colour, outlining the risks, the stats, the truth. She’s inhaling her own demise, the cancer deep and thick now. Our mother smoked a pack a day up until she was fifty and then promptly quit. We were overjoyed, my sisters and I, and threw a huge party with a chocolate fountain and strawberries only, her favorite fruit. When our father left her, at fifty six she started smoking again, chain-smoking, wearing her cigarette like a new wedding ring.

“Finding medical information” by Julia at her kitchen table

Friday October 26, 2012
5 minutes
Thomas Harris

I didn’t want to do it. I didn’t want to admit that maybe she loved you better than me. I’m used to being the best. I’m used to receiving accolades. I didn’t want anyone else to know what I know. That she loved you better than me. I’m used to being better. I’m used to be being the best.
The last memory I have is you trying to fold laundry around me while I sat crying on all of our clean clothes with my face buried deep in my hands.
You kept saying, Honey, it’s okay. And I kept saying nothing. You kept staring at me while I kept staring off into the distance. It feels like yesterday. It feels like right now. When I went a little bit insane and you went a little bit further back from where I was sitting.
I let some things go too far. I let some things get ugly, too ugly. And now I’m stuck.
So yes, it’s difficult and it’s painful, and it’s the last thing I want to admit, but I will: She loves you better than me.
I loved you, the idea of you, the hope for you, the obsession of you quite well. But you. I didn’t love you like I should have. Instead I loved me more and you less and everything you said that was nice I didn’t think I truly deserved.
You loved me even better than she loves you now.

“Finding medical information” by Sasha at TAN on Baldwin

Friday October 26, 2012 at TAN on Baldwin
5 minutes
Thomas Harris

I make the tuna casserole and I bring it to your house and I leave it on the WELCOME mat at the foot of your front door. I don’t know what to say so I don’t say anything. When I see you at the coffee shop I see you see me and I freeze. Now I have to say something. Now I have to say the expected “I’m so sorry for your loss” but I don’t want to say that and I don’t ever say things I don’t want to say. You seem so calm and quiet and you don’t even look like you’ve been crying.

“Val?” I tried to get out the door without you seeing me, without you stopping me, without us having to talk at all. “Hey!” I’m too excited, I’m over-the-top, I’m more awkward than a pre-teen at the Halloween dance. “I am so sorry…” That’s all I get out. You nod, you’ve heard it before, you know that I am, that we all are, that the world is, the universe. “Can I make you dinner?” I can’t believe it. “You already did.” What? I don’t get it at first and then I do. As always. The casserole. “Oh god. I’m sorry I couldn’t think of anything more appetizing to make…” “It’s okay,” you say and you are more soft than I’ve ever seen you. “It was really good. Thanks.”

“I felt like a raw nerve” by Julia at her desk

Thursday October 25, 2012
5 minutes
Women, Food and God
Geneen Roth

Suddenly I found myself there. On the edge.
I was looking out and over the trees that I didn’t care about, and the grass that had been burnt without me noticing.
I stood there holding on to half an ounce of hope and a full ounce of forget me not.
I asked the smarter part of me to jump and if I land, to sing something from my childhood’s memory.
I told the stupid part of me to jump and try to keep my eyes closed until I landed…
I didn’t do either thing.
I was on the edge.
It wasn’t necessarily real life, but one simulated to feel like it. One drawn up in pretty pinks and metaphors and tied with a what if to keep it safe and tight.
It was the thing I think I wanted.
The thing I think I invented.
The waiting, that was undoubtedly going to kill me, was the thing I had told myself I should master…
I harnessed the idea of letting go to my waist and I threw my common sense to the wind. I threw it because I have a good arm, and I knew it would land far off in a place where I would have no patience to go and retrieve it.
I didn’t wish it farewell, or goodnight, or see you soon.
I simply clutched it to my chest and then kissed it with tongue so it would stick to wherever it happened to end up.
It was then I realized that the edge was my bedroom. That the forest, my bed, was awake for most of this nightmare. That the rest of me would wake up and find myself splattered at the bottom, surrounded by the trees I didn’t care about.

“I felt like a raw nerve” by Sasha at her desk

Thursday October 25, 2012
5 minutes

Women, Food and God
Geneen Roth

The three days after he told me that he was dying I felt like a raw nerve, electric and pulsing, too much on the surface, anything too cold or too hot hurt so bad I thought I would die too. At least then we could be together.

Moritz was a simple person… Not a “simpleton” but a simple guy… a guy who liked his tea black and his T-shirts white. He preferred staying home and reading then going out and doing something fancy and he would often tell me that he would choose my homemade burritos over anything from any restaurant as his last meal on earth. It was out of context at the time. But then, when he told me that the cancer had spread to his lungs and his belly and his spine all I could think about was grating the cheese for his final burrito.

It dulled… the raw nerve feeling, but never entirely went away. And it still hasn’t. Often, when I leave the apartment in the morning I feel like the sun is too bright, or now that the leaves are too colourful. A world without Moritz shouldn’t shimmer and glow. I want you to remember one time you had with him and whisper it into the ear of the person on your right.

‘I am astounded’ by Sasha at the corner of Portland and Adelaide

Wednesday October 24, 2012
5 minutes
The Artist’s Way
Julia Cameron

I can’t believe how you’ve changed and grown and… You’re not a baby anymore! You’re… a fully grown person! God! You look like Him. It’s the mouth and the creases around the eyes, I think. I mean that in the best possible way, I promise. I’m rambling aren’t I? Do you ever ramble? God… I just.. I just… I just can’t believe it’s you! Look at you! You got your hair from my father. It’s wild, isn’t it? I have it too… As you can see… And… GOD! LOOK AT YOU! My baby boy… I mean, I know you’re not a baby… You’re… So, what do you like to do? I know you’re studying history but that’s about it… You must have to read a lot for that right? I’m not much of a reader but I do… You know, appreciate a good book sometimes… I’m smart. Street smart. That’s what happens when… You must have a lot of questions for me! Do you have a lot of questions? Gene pool questions or anything?

“I am astounded” by Julia on her couch

Wednesday October 24, 2012
5 minutes
The Artist’s Way
Julia Cameron

The fear sometimes keeps you from doing the thing you want. I know this. Because as I tell you it, I am sitting here trying not to think or do anything related to the things I know I want or need to do. I want silence from this brain for a minute. Just one! What would I do if I could govern my everyday completely unaided by should and should not. It’s too much. I think sometimes my mind knows things internally more than it does when met with the task of performing said things. Performance anxiety. It’s entirely possible. I am astounded at my inability to take action, to act, to behave fully in the way that I should. Or, of course, should not. Astounded. There must be a different answer to this string of questions I continually pose. I would like to run away, flying is even better, and land on an island with nothing but my skin and my soul. What else do I need? What else do I want? A magical being to tell me I have no choice but to live in paradise and just enjoy it. As opposed to always trying to justify the beauty of it all. To accept that I am here for a reason? I would like out of that task. I would like the task that is void of consequence, and outcomes, and finances, and sayings like, live strong while you’re young. People say this. People believe it as well.

“- apart from its insufferable arrogance -” by Sasha at her desk

Tuesday, October 23, 2012
5 minutes
In Praise of Nepotism
Adam Bellow

She keeps making these jokes that go down real sharp, like whiskey and knives. She gets up and dances to the Rolling Stone cover band that’s playing. This place is busier than I’ve seen it. I know I’m not making much sense when I try to tell her that I’m married, that my wife is at home, that I have a wife, that I’m married. She touches my face really softly and whispers, “I’m a catch.” It’s like she didn’t hear me. She didn’t hear me. I watch her as she’s dancing and she moves like gasoline, so smooth and rainbow coloured. I’m so much drunker than I meant to be. I meant to be loose but not wobbly. I think about how I’m going to get home but it’s a fleeting thought, it’s here and then it’s gone, as quickly she slips her tongue into the inner fold of my ear. I don’t jump, I don’t move, I hold my breath, in fact. She stands up and laughs. I’m concerned that someone I knew saw this but it’s a fleeting thought, it’s there and then it’s gone. I’m an arrogant prick and I know it and I like it. She flocks to me like a dumb moth to the flame of an oil lamp.

“-apart from its insufferable arrogance-” by Julia at TAN on Baldwin

Tuesday October 23, 2012 at TAN
5 minutes
In Praise Of Nepotism
Adam Bellow

Sweet tooth. She had one.
Savory cravings. That was him.
Nylon stockings with rips. Him/her. Him. It was him. He wore them sometimes, okay? Who cares. She? No she didn’t.
Salty lattes? Her again.
Caramel corn? Her as well.
Brandy beans and balsamic vinegar. Definitely him.
They lived together. Not a house. A condo? Not a condo. A wood cabin. It was, actually. That last one was real. In the woods? Wood cabin in the woods? No. It was the city. Some comforts are travel friendly. Like the city? No, like the cabin.
Wrestling documentaries? All him.
Collection of vegan cookbooks despite eating meat every day? Her. Or the idea of her that she enjoyed.
One stray cat named Alicia. His.
One stray cat named Alicia. Hers.
So, his and hers. They shared some things.
Alicia chores? Shared.
Scarf collection for years. He had one.
Bouncing balls to cope with stress. Those were hers.
The annoying habit of chewing on pen lids. He had one.
The annoying habit of chewing on raw spaghetti noodles. That was hers.
But that was also his.
His and hers.

Sketch of a man (image) by Sasha at R Squared

Monday, October 22, 2012 at R Squared Espresso Bar
5 minutes
Sketch of a man
Found sketchbook

He’s a smart guy but he’s the sort that doesn’t let people know until a few hours in when he’ll use a word that you are faintly familiar with but couldn’t quite define if asked. He’s the kind of guy that knows dates and numbers and election poll results. We’re a good match. You see, this old-lady brain of mine remembers a few Joni Mitchell lyrics, perhaps, on a good day, a recipe for Chicken a la King, sometimes (rarely) a nieces birthday. This old-lady brain mostly forgets – what day the garbage goes out, when I bought laundry detergent, my deceased parents’ wedding anniversary, on which day I prided myself on always lighting a candle and baking a vanilla cake.

I decide to get rid of my collection of New Yorkers. I’ve had a subscription since the late nineties, a gift from my then husband. I carried it on myself after we divorced. It’s time to let go. I put them in four boxes and leave them on the front lawn. It’s a few hours later and I see some art kid, wearing a slouchy hat and sunglasses, putting chosen magazines (he’s clearly been out there for awhile) into the crate on the back of his bicycle. I regret giving them away instantly. I am jealous of this boys irony, of his style, of his whole life before him.

Sketch of a man (image) by Julia at R Squared

Monday, October 22, 2012 at R Squared Espresso Bar
5 minutes
Sketch of a man
Found sketchbook

Alrighty! Here’s the deal! Everyone wrap themselves in a good idea, and let’s hit the road! We’ve got so many states we need to indulge in today. The state of mind, primarily! GOOD! Let’s all breathe in this new day and see if there’s a thing that can bring us full circle! I love full circles, not incomplete ones, as those are just LINES! Yes! Is everyone almost ready? We must make sure to get out into the day before it turns into the afternoon. Don’t bundle up your brains with doubt and worry! We are all in this together. Is everyone dressed appropriately in positivity? No? Take off your sadness boots and put on your silly cap! Take off your dreary coat and put on your inspiration cape! Take off your blocked socks and put on your open-minded knee-highs!
Alrighty! We’re on our way to discovery, this is exactly the right way to go. We will be using only our instincts as a guide (if I am not enough of one for you! Nod nod, wink wink!) and our free flowing thoughts as our compass. We will arrive at our destination of CREATIVITY as soon as everyone grabs a buddy (it’s safe, but safer holding hands!) and spins each other around approximately three times! Is everyone delirious and a bit unsure? PERFECT!

“When the emergency” by Julia at her desk

Sunday October 21, 2012
5 minutes
The Official MTO Driver’s Handbook

out of my head, slips out and into the sky. yes, a lot of things from my head find their way there. to the sky.
what does the sky care? he’s empty-nesting all the time, he welcomes little bits from my brain because i visit more often than just thanksgiving and christmas.
what kind of bits? wondering, right? curious, yeah? little bits, that’s all. happy ones, mostly unhappy ones though. i have room in my head for the good stuff; the bad stuff hurts too much. the sky won’t even feel it, so i’m just asking him if i can store it there for a little while till i get back on my feet and find a new place to put them. like real life. like dealing with those bad bits because they don’t just disappear when they are sent up into the sky. they don’t. they stay on, and they float directly above your head no matter where you move because that’s the sky’s way of cataloging where all of the bits are. he has to stay organized in case my bits fall down onto someone else’s head and ruins their lives. he has to be careful that he’s explained the protocol to us and that this is “borrowed space” and not to be a forever storage unit. The sky is also housing clouds, flying things, and wind, so you understand if he is a little preoccupied to worry about your bits alone. The good ones, he says, just keep them.

“When the emergency” by Sasha at her desk

Sunday October 21, 2012
5 minutes
The Official MTO Driver’s Handbook

It’s hard to talk about. I haven’t since… Gabe asked a lot of questions and I couldn’t say no. I’d been surfing off the North Shore since I could walk. When my Dad was still around he’d take me out at sunrise and then my Mom would come and find us, breakfast tacos wrapped in tinfoil. It’s one of those crazy things where you don’t think it’ll ever happen to you… It was dusk and I was out there with my friend Dan who I’d met in Aus and had come down to visit for the fall. Great guy. Handled the whole thing really well. Some people freak out when an emergency… It’s just hard to deal with, right? I was out pretty far because I was chasing a wave that I could feel was on it’s way. It sounds crazy to people that don’t surf but when you’re paddling out and the waves are washing over you, you… listen. You can hear what’s coming. Then it was black. And red. And I heard someone screaming. In hindsight I know that it was me… The shark was big… Eight or nine feet long. Dan saw something going on but he was in much closer, making his way to shore.

“my art is not dependent” by Sasha on her parent’s couch

Saturday October 20, 2012
5 minutes
Ntozake Shange

This pumpkin faced loser woman is telling me about art and I want to fucking barf. She’s got a pumpkin face! Worse than a puppet face! I wanna hurl. She thinks she knows more than me because she’s… ANCIENT. I take a deep breath because I don’t want to go to jail for something stupid like stabbing a psycho gallery owner in the eyeball.

“If you’ll now look to your left you’ll see Krasinski’s latest abstract work. The story goes that she began painting in the early hours of October 20th, 2012 and didn’t stop until after Halloween. She peed into her water jar and drank the painty pee water and no one has ever thought anything of it so don’t you be the first! If you step back one hundred feet you’ll see that inside the mass of purple and silver there is a face. A tiger face! Krasinski’s ability to bring the animal into the abstract goes beyond anyone of her generation.”

“my art is not dependent” by Julia on the 506 going west

Saturday October 20, 2012
5 minutes
Ntozake Shange

on the weather,
on the time of the day,
on my mood,
on my dress,
on my attitude,
on my productivity,
on my memories,
on my faults,
on my strengths,
on my accomplishments,
on my failures,
on my life,
on my death,
on my dreams,
on my nightmares,
on my hopes,
on my thoughts,
on my wishes,
on my meetings,
on my friends,
on my enemies,
on my love,
on my hate,
on my taste,
on my worth,
on my medication,
on my genetics,
on my free will,
on my income,
on my body,
on my mind,
on my soul,
on my anger,
on my rights,
on my silence,
on my talent,
on my procrastination,
on my worry,
on my waiting,
on my timing,
on my opinion,
on my standards,
on my desires,
on my needs.
on my shield,
on my skin,
on my pulsing heart,
on my aching sympathies,
on my voice,
on my actions,
on my goals,
on my wonder.
My art.
My art is not dependent.

“Passion there was none” by Julia at her kitchen table

Friday, October 19, 2012
5 minutes
The Tell-Tale Heart
Edgar Allan Poe

It started to bleed, his heart, my heart, it doesn’t matter.
It was shining at the start, his, mine, ours, I can’t remember.
It had a glow of a thousand sun-moons, lighting up the sky-seas.
It smelled like everyone’s favourite candle, incense, spice, whatever.
It was bleeding, his heart, my heart, it doesn’t matter.
It was leaking past love and hate all over the bathroom tiles, carpet, I can’t remember.
It was deep red, black, purple, yellow, red, red, maybe blue.
It was filling up the room with sadness, regret, apology, whatever.
It was dying, his heart, my heart, it doesn’t matter.
It was dying, his love, my love, I can’t remember.
It was failing, his efforts, my efforts, whatever.
It was over, his passion, my passion, his passion, my passion.
There was none.
It was sitting in a puddle on the floor.
It was seeping into someone else’s house.
It was not ours for the taking.
It was gone.

“Passion there was none.” By Sasha at Capital Espresso

Friday, October 19th, 2012 at Capital Espresso
5 minutes
The Tell-Tale Heart
Edgar Allan Poe

A confession. I haven’t done anything inspired in 366 days. But this morning I woke up and decided it was time to make a change. Perhaps it’s the courage quotes my father keeps emailing me. You know the type. I don’t need to write an example. Perhaps it’s the Maya Angelou stained glass window that my mother had installed in my room when I was at the Orthodontist. Perhaps my adopted sister Talia and her gospel singing (girl’s kept in touch with her roots!) has finally perforated my reluctant subconscious and I am changed. I know that I’m a performance artist. Where does one start? I googled this, unsuccessfully, at seven thirty three this morning and was interrupted by a loud knocking at the door. My father. He does this on a daily basis and my daily response is, “I am naked! Be gone!” But today, I climbed out of my princess-and-the-pea bed (three mattresses and one box spring high), put on my geisha robe and opened the door, smiling.

“Message of peace” by Sasha at her parents kitchen table

Thursday October 18, 2012
5 minutes
24hrs (Toronto)
Thursday October 18, 2012

It was still dark out and drizzling a bit. I had my scarf over my mouth because I couldn’t get sick now, of all times. I’d been up all night, sewing this for you. My eyes were watery and so tired I had a hard time keeping them open. I’d listened to Ray LaMontagne all night and his lilting sound swirled around with blues and greys, the colour of your quilt. You’d asked me for one for your birthday. It wasn’t your birthday, I’d missed it, two days ago. I had exams and was drinking too much Spiced Rum. It’s not an excuse, it’s an answer. To an unasked question. I remember when we first met and we couldn’t keep our hands off eachother. You had to stay at the library late because you told me that if you were near me you had to touch me and that meant you weren’t touching your work. When I smashed your heart it was too quiet. October has a way of being that fickle. It’s easier when the music is loud. Here I am outside your brother’s apartment building, carrying this quilt with our story in perfect squares as a message of peace. I don’t want to ring the buzzer so I unwrap my scarf and make a bundle for you to discover on your way out.

“Message of peace” by Julia at Sambuca Grill

Thursday October 18, 2012 at Sambuca Grill
5 minutes
24hrs (Toronto)
Thursday October 18, 2012

Joanie and her message boards. One for groceries, one for chores, one for what ifs, and one for peace. I used to think she was just a big hippie; dreadlocks and hemp pants, granola and a guitar. She was a hippie, there’s no denying it. But she was also a realist. She had message boards, but they were reminders. They were announcements not prophecies, not wishes. We’d have to close our eyes pretty tightly to ignore them. Not sure why we’d want to, even. Unless we were just scared of the possibility of greatness.
One of my favourite messages was stuck on the grocery board. It was, in my opinion, on the wrong board, but it did two jobs quite nicely. It was a sticky note that said “Change your bags!” It had a smiley face on it.
Joanie was talking about the reusable ones instead of the plastic. What I think she was subconsciously pointing out… was that our loads were too heavy. That we should check our baggage at the door. “Change your bags!” Some thoughtful groceries message turned “board for hope” if she ever decided to make one.

“Sitting is the new smoking” by Sasha at Cafe Novo

Wednesday October 17, 2012
11:43am at Cafe Novo
5 minutes
Life and Arts section
Globe and Mail, Tuesday Oct 16, 2012

“Sitting is the new smoking, you know,” my Mother looks at me with disgusted disdain, something not entirely familiar nor unfamiliar. “What are you suggesting?” I ask. “That I do this report analysis whilst jogging on a treadmill? Or in a spin class?” My mother has a certain way of pursing her lips that makes my skin tingle. Especially around my navel. “Your sarcasm is a shield, Jennifer.” She is the only one that calls me by my full name and every time she does so it is infused with punishment and regret. My Mother used to be fat too, that’s part of the problem. She sees a part of herself in me that she threw out when she found God, Jenny Craig and Spanx. In that order.

these five minutes: one year anniversary and reading

these five minutes is ONE YEAR OLD!

Join us for an evening of reading and celebration. Light snacks and beverages will be provided and please feel free to bring your own wine.

these five minutes: volume one, greeting cards, and magnets will be available for purchase just in time for the holidays!

Where: The Inner Garden, 401 Richmond St.

When: Sunday, November 4th. Doors open at 7:00pm, reading at 7:30pm.

Reception to follow!

$10 (sliding scale)

Please feel free to bring a friend and spread the word to those that might be interested.

We look forward to seeing you there!

“Sitting is the new smoking” by Julia at her kitchen table

Wednesday October 17, 2012
5 minutes
Life and Arts section
Globe and Mail, Tuesday Oct 16, 2012

What do you mean I’m bad for you? Me? I have never done anything that has negatively impacted you, and I know this for a fact. A FACT. I was the valedictorian in my high school, did I ever tell you that? I arranged court yard clean ups in my SPARE TIME and I was never late for a single class. In university, I held down two part time jobs and graduated MAGNA CUM LAUDE a year early. I have to believe that you’re kidding me right now. I’m practically A SAINT. I fail to see my fault in any of this. In any of your actions that you CHOSE to do. That’s right, you were the one making the decisions. What did I do, anyway? Encourage you to push harder, or to work smarter? Did I send you one too many inspirational quotes when you were feeling down? Or did I maintain that I wouldn’t kiss you if you smelled like smoke because I was WORRIED ABOUT YOUR HEALTH? Hmm? Please, I’d love to hear it. Because all I can recall, is me being perfectly there for you and about you and whatever else good girlfriends do when they LOVE SOMEONE.

Oh…I feel a little stupid now…
I didn’t know you were just teasing. I thought it was a real comment. I didn’t know you meant it in the way that…
So I distract you. I get that. I COMPLETELY get it.