“Art making as a playful, life-supporting activity” by Julia at her desk

Tuesday August 20, 2019
6:15pm
5 minutes
Quote by Joseph Zinker

i throw my hands into the muck
praise be i have muck to touch
and if i touch the much with my
hands then i will not need to shit
talk any of my friends or any of
the people i say i’d never be
friends with and why do i ever do
that when my life is good, really
good, do i think it’s funny or do
i think my good luck might be
running out and this might be
the end of the road, heard it
here first i am back in the muck…

i throw my brush into the muck
and paint a horrendous image
of beauty the way i see it in my
head and i don’t stop until the
whole canvas is brown and ripped
i thrust this much and that until
i am fully fledged and humbled
like i must be if i am to create art
or if i want to be alive among
humans and give art that comes
from the knowing that we are
so similar that this is an extension
of everything, that you and me
are either both clean, or both
in the muck even if it’s not the
same time

“The relevance to actual practice has been questioned” by Julia on M and N’s couch

Thursday April 4, 2019
9:06pm
5 minutes
Evidence-Based Psychotherapy Practice in College Mental Health
Stewart E. Cooper

I mean they say practice makes perfect right? Hi! I’m here to tell you that the only thing practice makes is you better at making messes. What’s the perfect thing? What’s the perfect thing I’m supposed to need anyway?

I practice not hating myself
I practice not destroying my face
I practice not jumping to conclusions
I practice deciding
I practice the ukulele
I practice patience
I practice anger
I practice not giving a fuck
I practice not stealing.
And yet.
I am still a pile of shit most days.
I am still regretting my pop and pinch and pick and pull.
I am a full blown mess and some days I know how to clean it up and some days I wish I could evaporate into thin air and live somewhere that doesn’t require a face.
I practice these five and this five and those five.
I practice telling the truth and still find myself lying.
I practice words lit by a nightlight in my bathroom.

“scratched plastic Fisher Price drum set” by Julia on her couch

Saturday March 2, 2019
9:10pm
5 minutes
(Lady)bug
Ilyssa Goldsmith

It was hard to read about the babies she found laying on the floor with dog shit. I read the case notes on some of these households and decided maybe this social work stuff isn’t for everyone. Maybe I’m not strong enough to witness that. I think I’d want to get too personal, with them, you know? Ask them if anyone’s hugged them lately from the bottom of their hearts and waited the requisite 6 seconds to synch up the heartbeats. I would want to sit there all day and say I’m here, okay, for you, I’m here right now and I have nowhere else to be. I’d bring them a gift basket and say it’s just what I do for everyone. Or maybe I do it for everyone. See the resources right now don’t allow for any kind of extraneous measures. No radical acts of kindness and those workers are fighting fires that won’t ever go out. They’re tired. They don’t have time for everybody.

“everything is ending” by Julia at the studio

Monday June 18, 2018
1:14pm
5 minutes
A Visit from the Goon Squad
Jennifer Egan

Good timing. I was about to flip my shit.
Who do I flip my shit toward, anyway? Is there
someone out there who has the necessary skills to
deal with shit being flipped at them?
Do they specialize in flipping shit back over or something?
It’s a good thing that everything is ending.
because I am not sure how much more beginning I can take.
New life, new friends, new ideas about my eyebrows.
This shit takes time to build and see and I think what is
worse is that it does not take long to flip, just long to
decide to flip it. Flip the shit I mean, If I wasn’t being clear.
Things are ending and the new moon is like, Yo, do your new thing.
We are all new. We are all brand new babies sucking on the nipple of life
hoping there’s enough milk to keep us from crying our heads off.
That’s what the new moon says. I swear to god she is full of shit herself
but like, it’s the moon, and she may be royalty but she’s not an asshole.
She doesn’t think she’s better than us.
I like my moon to have a little bit of attitude anyway.
She’s not pretending to be better than us new babies trying to navigate
this ridiculous existence. She sees it all, so she knows how common
the scrambling around is.
And now that everything is ending I can finally take a shit
instead of piling shit on shit and getting buried in a world
of my own misguided making.
I’m still talking metaphoric shit here, cause I never really let
that whole concept go. I’m working on making some more specific shit.
That’ll be good when it all ends and has to begin again.

“shit and eggshell” by Sasha at her desk

Sunday, March 4, 2018
10:01pm
5 minutes
My Life Smells Like This
Amy Bloom

I didn’t expect this place to smell like eggshells and sweat, soup and gasoline, wet sand and morning breath. I didn’t expect you to give me eyes like you understand. I pour myself a glass of red wine, something from Argentina, something in the fifteen dollar range. You’re late, and that’s okay. I need to get my bearings. I snoop around. The kitchen is dirty. The bathroom is clean. The window is open in the lounge, and it’s freezing outside so that means that someone either smoked a joint or took a shit. Maybe both. I didn’t expect this place to have the view that it does. I’m taking it in when I feel your hand on my waist, and your breath in my ear.

“Sitting in rapt attention” by Sasha at her desk


Wednesday August 24, 2016
3:44pm
5 minutes
SAD MAG
Issue No. 19

Doris is screaming and I can smell the shit in her diaper. “Could you change her?” I ask Ted. He gives me a look like, “Fuck you, cow,” and I pick her up and put her on my hip. “Could you get me a coffee?” I say, over my shoulder. Ted nods, but I doubt he’ll do it. Doris pulls by earring out and I watch as it rolls under a row of seats. Shit. I love these earrings. She reeks and I’m hungover and the ocean is choppy. I’ll come back for it. No one wants a single amethyst stud. It will be there. The shit is all over Doris’ back, one of those explosive situations that people warn about but you don’t always believe actually happen.

“So sorry mine is late” by Julia at her dining table


Saturday February 20, 2016
2:13pm
5 minutes
from an e-mail

I didn’t want to hand in a piece of shit and to be honest that was exactly what I was doing because once again I didn’t do the proper thing of giving myself enough time to complete an assignment.
I wish I was better at keeping my shit together but for some reason mine is the type that crumbles upon contact like a gluten free brownie and then it’s everywhere and there’s a huge mess so it’s better not to touch that shit in the first place because its disaster is a bit unpredictable. These days.
So as I was shaming myself for becoming a useless sack of wasted potential, hearing my mother’s voice ringing in my ear saying “you see you do very well even when you don’t try but imagine if you only applied yourself once in awhile you could be thriving honey really thriving,” I start formulating a half smile that depicts my insides as accurately to my English Lit teacher as humanly possible.
“I’d rather accept the consequences than try and prolong the inevitable again so here it is in all its tarnished glory and tied with a stupid little punctual bow.”

“I like chocolate!” by Sasha at Caffe W


Sunday February 15, 2015
2:10pm
5 minutes
overheard at Caffe W

I don’t want that shit. It’s nasty! It’s sticky and it slides around my mouth like it thinks it knows where it’s going but it DON’T. You’ve got that look like I’ve said something wrong but really I’m just trying to practice truthfulness, like that stinky yoga teacher talks about. Everyone makes such a big deal about chocolate but I do not get it. I really don’t! Maybe it’s a woman thing. I’m not an oppressor of women, or anything so don’t get the wrong idea, I just know what women do around chocolate and I’ve never seen a man do that. It’s borderline sexually erotic. Chocolate is. For women. Are you gonna finish that burrito? I would. I mean, if you’re not going to. Are you coming to Becca’s Mad Men party on Saturday? I haven’t decided yet… I mean, I like an excuse to wear a suit and tie, but I’m allergic to cats and Becca has three. It’s like, either I take the anti-histamines and pray to the allergy gods that they work or I…

“Sell it to me! I want to fix it!” by Sasha at her kitchen table


Wednesday January 28, 2015
9:19pm
5 minutes
Sasha’s notebook

Sell me your shit! I wanna make it cool! I wanna fix it! Sell it to me cheap! I can do better than you, but I’m to laz-yyyyy! Gimme dat blanket – Imma make it a pillow. BANG! Gimme dat dreamcatcher! Imma catch some real randy dreams! Sell me your shit! I’m jonesin’ for a nice hit of… STUFF! Your stuff. Your old, used, wet, wilted, sticky, sexy, slimy, gross, gorgeous stuff. Imma make a soup outta it and let that shit simmer simmer simmer. Have a garage sale, biatch, and I’ll be the only muthafuckah there!