“Kensington Prairie Farm” by Julia at the desk

Friday July 27, 2018
9:45pm
5 minutes
www.kpfarm.com

Don’t talk to me about alpacas.
I’m not interested in giving those assholes any more attention than they deserve.
You come at me and running your mouth about alpacas?
I swear to the holy ghost that knows you that those will be your goddamn last words.
I don’t have anything weird about alpacas. I don’t have anything weird about alpacas.
I think their wool feels gross.
I think their faces are stupid.
I don’t have anything weird about alpacas.
Okay so my first boyfriend used to be obsessed with them.
He’d talk about them.
He’d ask me to go to the fucking farm to see them with him.
Now that is having something weird about alpacas.
Get a dog, you know what I mean?
Like go smile at a goat or whatever.
Why was he obsessed with them?
Don’t ask me why!
If I knew why, I probably wouldn’t have anything weird about alpacas.

“someone else’s sext” by Julia at the studio

Wednesday March 28, 2018
8:20am
5 minutes
from a cybertip.ca ad

So I get this message from one of my clients. It says he can’t wait to see me again and he’s been thinking of LICKING me up and down in HIS BED. So at first, naturally, I assume he has sent it to the wrong person. I’m like, Unprofessional Bro, this is someone else’s sext! Then I don’t respond, because what good can come out of it when I’m actually supposed to babysit his kid in two days? I mean, it’s a trap, right? Even if I said I didn’t appreciate it? So much weirdness. So when I don’t respond, ten minutes later, I get another message rom him. AND THIS TIME HE USES MY NAME. “What time should I expect you, Alana?” And usually his wife is the one in contact with me, arranging when SHE should expect me. So I’m like, are these texts together? Is this intentional? What the mother eff am I supposed to say?

“a forest lake frozen to the bottom” by Julia in Phong Nha-ke national park

Wednesday January 31, 2018

10:20pm
5 minutes
Seen
Pia Tafdrup

It reminds me of the time we tried to take our leftovers home and the waitstaff who couldn’t understand our English very well didn’t know what a container meant. And so they gave it to us in a giant ceramic bowl that wouldn’t fit in our tiny fridge. They must have thought we were out of our minds. We brought the bowl to our room and some smaller bowls to eat from but we were too full to keep eating that night so we put them in the tiny fridge. The next day the giant bowl was gone but our two smaller bowls were still in there. We didn’t want leftovers until later and by the time it was later, we couldn’t eat them anyway. When we went to stick a spoon in, the top was hard as rock. It took a moment to figure out that it had frozen over-we put it in the wrong spot. This made us laugh for a while. Thinking of them coming to collect our giant bowl and saying, well I guess we’ll leave their ice noodles in the fridge then?

“Rivers till I reach you” by Julia at her desk


Thursday August 3, 2017
6:36pm
5 minutes
Rivers and Roads
The Head and the Heart


I heard the seagulls laughing last night. I don’t think they wanted to be. I don’t know if anyone else noticed. No one seemed to be ducking or running, or telling them to piss off. Maybe it was subtle seagull warning signs meant for the clarvoyant. Maybe that was their gentle way of peeling back the scales on the eye I keep hidden. I thought about listening but then I was too afraid. I did run for a bit. I decided to stay on the sidewalk even though the path up the hill would have been faster. You asked me nicely, that’s the only reason why I don’t do it anymore. Anyway, I just wanted to let you know I’m fine and the world might be ending but it hasn’t yet so, all good. And if you want, I can try to let you know if I hear it again. I’ll try to read the room.

“And in the business library” By Julia at The Marriott In Decatur, Georgia


Thursday August 4, 2016
1:46am
5 minutes
the Mariott wifi

I want to make a Clue reference here but I don’t know enough about it to give it the credit it deserves. Solid movie. I mean board game. See what I mean? The reason was because if anything is “in the library” I want to say “with the candlestick!” But that might be the end of it. I probably didn’t need to explain it. I’m bad at explaining things. I wish you weren’t here. It’s weird having another human see me this much and you seem to be amused or something or sweet or caring. Maybe all of those things. Thank you for that. There is a list of things I am thankful for. Remind me to send that to you tomorrow. Anyway you were saying something about the library? The business library? Will you be doing your business there? Sorry, I mean, will you be conducting business there? You can say no. You don’t have to laugh either. I don’t want pity laughs! I guess I never learned to take a compliment! Or a clue! I mean get a clue. Except then it doesn’t really sound that good. But maybe that’s okay. Maybe it doesn’t have to sound good.

“Professional photography” by Julia at her dining table


Sunday, March 27, 2016
9:13pm
5 minutes
from a flyer

Abigail got my parents a professional photo session for their anniversary. I told her not to waste her money on something like that cause it would be more of a gift for her and not them. She told me that everybody likes having nice photos of themselves and that was literally the end of that. Abi can be so stubborn sometimes. She once hired a clown to entertain at her own kid’s birthday even though he’s scared to death of clowns and spent the whole afternoon crying in the bathtub. She doesn’t want to listen, she just wants to do what ever she thinks will be best. I have stopped questioning if she ever thinks past herself and considers putting somebody before her. I know the answer. She doesn’t. My parents did the photo shoot to appease her because her temper is as unpredictably violent as you can imagine, and they are the most awkward and cringe worthy photos you’ve ever seen, let alone that my parents have ever been in. I want to take her into a sound proof room sometimes and shake the living shit out of her while just screaming NO to her over and over.

“your field of experience” by Julia at her dining table


Saturday, March 26, 2016
5:05pm
5 minutes
http://www.mysticmamma.com/

It’s taking all of Sylvia’s strength not to snip her eyelid skin just to see…
Just to know what it’s like to have a hole to look through when her eyes are closed.
She traces the smoothest part of her face and gathers a fold in the middle with her thumb and forefinger.
She is overcome with an urge so big it starts talking to her..
Nobody cares about the girl with two normal eyelids… ….. …..
Nobody talks about the girl who doesn’t take any risks..
Nobody wonders why the girl without scars has no scars… ……………………………
Sylvia is convinced after the third or fifth hour of debating-daydreaming-conjuring up responses, that it probably wouldn’t hurt much anyway..
She envisions the incision healing quickly.
Assuming it must be pretty resilient skin if it has never been ripped in all her years alive and reckless on this planet….

So far…

“Letter Writing” by Julia at her desk


Thursday November 26, 2015
11:44pm
5 minutes
from the specials board at Our Town Cafe

Dear guy from the Turkish market buying one kilo of sun-dried tomatoes while wearing a safety vest,

You may have just stolen my heart, permanently, and I’m okay with that.
See I was looking for someone new to give it to, after I got it back from the guy I lent it to without knowing. I was tricked into telling him things about me and letting him see a version of me that most people don’t want to see, or shouldn’t see, or…Oh…now I wish I hasn’t mentioned that part at all cause it’s a bit embarrassing…..
Umm….If I hadn’t written this in pen, I would have erased the aforementioned weirdness but because I hate the way stuff looks scratched out, I will leave it in hopes that you don’t actually mind a little oversharing every now and again.
Back to the important matters at hand, guy wearing a safety vest.
I love sun-dried tomatoes so much and to see you buying them in such a large quantity is incredibly heartening. I can only begin to imagine what you’re planning to do with so many beautiful tomatoes. My biggest fear is that your wife or girlfriend or mother sent you here to buy them for the big party you’re announcing your future plans with a woman other than me at.
….Oh boy.
I wish I could erase that part too.

“ASPARTAME CONTAINS” by Julia on her couch


Saturday October 31, 2015
5:25pm
5 minutes
From the pack of gum

My mama told me from an early age that I was to stop drinking my diet colas and she told me it was because one day they would kill me. I would tell her from an early age that I did not like being talked to like an idiot and if she was going to tell me not to do something, she better bet her big behind that she isn’t doing it herself already. And I remember clear as day each time, my mama would say, “Do as I say, not as I do.” And I would say back, “Stupid is as stupid does.” From an early age my mama didn’t like me watching any movies with Mr. Tom Hanks in it if it was just going to “come back to bite her in her ass” each and every blasted time. I drank my diet colas whenever I felt like it, watching my mama guzzle back 6 pack before lunch. She didn’t want me to end up like her, and I knew that I wouldn’t because though I loved her, I didn’t respect her. She couldn’t get me to do what she said with a gun in her hand and a million dollars in her pocket.

“Because they prefer stability and predictability” by Julia on her couch


Friday October 30, 2015
12:30pm
5 minutes
The Political Economy Of The U.S. Militarism
Ismael Hossein-Zadeh


Carl and Carla sit on their breaking futon in front of their breaking television. Carl wears his only pair of jeans left, with the giant hole in the crotch, and Carla likes to wear her apron while she is at home “just in case.” Carl and Carla’s cat, Carter sits between them as they watch a re-run of Law and Order, SVU. Carl doesn’t speak to Carla when their show is on. Carla doesn’t touch Carl when their show is on. The two of them sit in very distinct bubbles when their show is on, and when their show is not on. Carl feels a pain in his lower back from the breaking futon. Carla feels a sting in her eyes from the breaking television.

“The days will be longer” by Julia at Zia Kathy’s house


Sunday March 8, 2015
12:29am
5 minutes
http://www.skam.ca

I suddenly became the girl who sits cross legged at her typewriter with her lamp weirdly perched on the bed beside her knee. It happened in the moment where I wanted to feel alive and well and proper and good. The lighting wasn’t right and somehow being closer to it felt more rustic. It felt the way a real writer would sit. Propped up against a few pillows, wrapped in an itchy couch throw. I knew that I was okay with the emptiness that was leaving my body because I could feel my lungs filling with a golden breath after so long without activity. In and out, lights on and bright. The days, I realized, would be longer from that instant on. There would be an abundance of abundance. How beautiful and mysterious and possible it all began to appear. You and your day will work together. You and your night will snuggle up and sleep soundly.

“he loved it when I forced him into seasonal costumes” by Julia on Katie’s couch in London


Friday December 12, 2014
5:36am
5 minutes
from Minnie Driver’s Instagram feed

Tonight Kip is looking perfect in his elf suit. The ears are just subtle enough and his strong body is showing through the tight striped T. I’m not one to brag, but I’ve outdone myself this time. All the ladies are swooning at this Christmas bachelorette and the feeling in the room is definitely a merry one! Part of the excitement is watching him entice other women, knowing full well I get to take him home directly after so many others have been wanting him.

Last year, a bit different, I made him be the stork at Jenna’s baby shower. He was not happy about it but he was the only one who could capture the essence of one so effortlessly. I never told him he had the easy energy of a bird but he knew he had it in him and he knew he had to share that because it was the right thing to do.

“Who wrote those poems?” by Julia at Parco della Zucca


Friday October 17,2014
3:18pm
5 minutes
Advanced Italian Grammar
Marcel Danesi


I might have been dreaming them. They seemed to fill my skin to the brim causing slight tremors and excessive use of metaphors. The sky was speaking directly to me and she was nudging me, trying to give me the answers without incriminating herself. She nodded. She winked. I couldn’t get the message because I was half listening and laugh-halfing and she gave up on me before I could say Ah, yes, I get it now. Laugh-halfing happens in between sleep and awake: a backwards place where the mind cannot meet up with the body. It tries, but wires get crossed and signals get lost. Sometimes I don’t hear the sky, I hear Nina Simone instead. But the body doesn’t know how to move. Just to describe movement with colours and poems.

“No, that was so wide!” by Julia at Grand beach


Saturday, July 19, 2014
5:28pm
5 minutes
overheard a Grand Beach


So those two were shooting a soccer ball, right? Right at us, no less. But we weren’t worried, obviously, cause they were kids, you know? Just two little rug rats trying to have fun. But thennnnnn, I’m telling you, it all got weird. Cause Madelyn is laying beside me and she has no idea what could happen, and suddenly, without warning, that damn soccer ball comes flying right at us. Right at Maddy! And Mad’s asleep cause that woman can sleep through a tsunami, knock on wood. She has no idea it’s coming, but I know she’s still sensitive from that jaw surgery she just had. Okay, okay, you got me, it was still sensitive because of the lip injections she had over the weekend. She was trying not to tell anyone about it because she was worried people would start calling her names or saying she was fake. You know how many women get lip injections? More than you would even know, and you wouldn’t even know this one if I didn’t open up my big ass mouth just to tell you my wife’s little secrets. Anyway! So I dive right?

“we pass the time very well” by Julia at Sambuca Grill


Saturday May 24, 2014 at Sambuca Grill
5:20pm
5 minutes
Sambuca Grill Drink List

we have a garden in the backyard that we’re just waiting to use. the guy who lives upstairs says DO NOT TOUCH and he says it with a sign and also with his lawn gnomes. we are not phased by lawn gnomes. he should have picked a scarier thing like a troll or a baby. we stare out into the yard every night and we plot our moves. we tell ourselves that when he goes away for the weekend we’ll take out our wheelbarrow and bring in some quality garden goods to our side of the house. we say to ourselves that we won’t need to take a lot, but enough of everything. he wants the red stuff and i want the green. we make sure that even in our minds we don’t take too much. can’t be greedy in fantasies because that’s being ill-prepared for realities. we pass the time very well when waiting for the upstairs guy to go away for the night or for the whole weekend. we make shadow puppets on the wall and tell each other stories in cooky voices. we drink flat ginger ale and ask each other questions about the rain forest and the prairies. we put an egg timer on the stove and try not to move until the timer goes off. we touch each other up and down our bodies using only our eyelashes.

“a direct violation” by Julia on the plane to Providence, RI


Wednesday April 30, 2014
10:15am
5 minutes
the passenger safety manual on United Airways

Misery loves company, is what I always tell myself when I’m upset. Not in the way you’re supposed to use that phrase–more just so I can feel like somewhere out there, someone is miserable just like me, even if around me everyone’s smiling. I don’t want others to be unhappy if I am–I know that’s how that Kathy Bates film got its name. Misery. And she was–you know, miserable—and she loved—you know, company. I don’t know, it’s just something that helps me. Lollipops also help but I hate asking for those because people just automatically think something’s wrong with me–like in a pedo-way, or a developmentally challenged way.
Well I’d say being here is what’s making me upset. I’m a tad homesick, I hate flying, and a young boy felt me up in the parking lot this morning when I was trying to mail my condolence card for Erica. I mean, it’s not a huge deal, he just grabbed my left boob and ran off as fast as lightening.

“that you would go” by Julia at her kitchen table


Thursday, June 27, 2013
11:59pm
5 minutes
Choice
Udiah


If you leave, will you please take the star-shaped welcome mat from the front hallway and burn it in the yard? I always hated that thing, and I only kept it because you like that weird freaky shit that sort of makes you look like a wizard, or a Larper. You know? You just collect all these annoying little figurines and you put them in every corner of every room and like, sometimes, I’m not gonna lie, I’m worried that you’re gonna make me pray to them, or look at them when we’re getting it on. That shit is too weird for me. So take the mat, and take the lavender that you’ve pulverized and stuffed into my old pantyhose, or like two pairs at least, and whatever else you’ve armed the house with. I wonder if you’re trying to get rid of me, there’s so many fucking trinkets everywhere. I mean, I’m all for little jars with twine or whatever, but I do not need tiny satchels of a “Pixie’s promise” to haunt me in my own home after you’ve gone and cursed everything I’ve ever even touched. So. When you leave. I guess, is the thing. When, not if, because in stating all of this out loud, I’m fairly certain you’re a lawn gnome that’s come to life to try and kill me in my sleep.

“That’s so awkward” by Julia on the 506 going east


Tuesday April 30, 2013
8:33pm
5 minutes
Overheard on the streetcar

I wish you wouldn’t flick your freshly cut toenails at me, Lynn. It’s highly disgusting.
You’re kind of being overly sensitive about everything, so I don’t really feel bad.
Are we going to talk like adults about this? Or?
Yeah, eventually. Jesus, let me step foot inside the house first, please.
You’ve been home for 20 minutes, Lynn.
Get off it! I’m decompressing. This is my decompressing time.
I had a long day too.
Nobody asked you about anything, AJ.
Fine.
You want to talk?
I don’t know.
Do you? AJ?
I said I don’t know. I mean I do but you’re being a pain in the ass right now and it’s not fun for me, okay?
It’s weird to talk about it like it’s nothing.
I never said it was nothing.
But it’s the way you act about it, like, let’s just talk it out and then it will be fine. It won’t be.
You don’t know that, Lynn, it could be amazing for us to really discuss it for once.
Did you know it’s always raining every time you leave the country? Every time you get on a plane, really.
That’s not true.
It is. It’s a weird thing you and the universe are doing to me.
STOP FLICKING THEM AT ME.
I’m not doing it on purpose…
I think your phone is ringing.
I think your brain is buzzing.
Fine, Lynn, just let me know when you’re ready.
I will do no such thing.

“the only kind there is.” by Julia at Sambuca Grill


Thursday April 25, 2013 at Sambuca Grill
2:40pm
5 minutes
from a quote by Carl Jung

One of a kind. And we’re having it with raspberry jam! Ha! I knew you’d come if I mentioned raspberry jam. You’re my little baby. You like everything that comes out of my mouth because you think you’re going to get the chance to taste it. I like it when I sing Janis Joplin to you and you roll around on the floor with your tongue out like it’s the dessert after all that yelling. You earned it. You love it when I tell you to cry, cry, baby. Here’s the thing, you asked for it before, remember? The one of a kind apology. It sounds like all the other sorrys but this one is so much better. You believe me because you believe everything that comes out of my mouth. You think you’re going to take some of those home for lunch tomorrow. WHY DO YOU WANT TO EAT SO MUCH? Consume me. Yeah. I’ll let you. Cry, cry, cry, cry, baby, baby, cry, baby, cry, baby. It has the seeds. The raspberry jam. Remember? I made you throw out the one without the seeds because then it’s just red and that is NOT why you buy raspberry jam. That is why you eat lollipops, or jello.
I’m spreading I’m sorry on your egg bread. On your challah. You told me I COULD! You TOLD ME. It’s the only kind there is. It’s the only lesson you need to learn. Just wait. Just WAIT. I’ll hold out my tongue for you and you can wait with your mouth open for the poison to drip on out and land right next to your teeth.

“He might get lucky” by Julia on her couch


Saturday February 9, 2013
1:26am
5 minutes
Chicken Soup for the Golfer’s Soul
Jack Canfield


I’ve been holding it in. My pee. I know that sounds gross but if you had asparagus for dinner then you would understand and you would be holding in your pee as well. Whatever. Pee once a day, that’s fine. Except it’s NOT fine and I know the more I go the less the asparagus thing will bother me…
He might get lucky. I’m talking about Adam. He might accidentally whack his head off the corner of the table that sticks out in the dining room and suffer a mild concussion, and then some sort of short term memory loss. Or better: long term. Then he’d forget that I was a little bit of a crazy and he’d never stop loving me. Is that a thing? Any of this? Like, I want to know if anyone has ever had to wish an injury on a loved one so they would forget how weird their partner is. He picked me, or something like that, whatever, so. It’s partially his fault. He could have asked me before we went out the first time if I had anything weird about myself that I wanted to tell him. And yeah, if I were trying to be honest, I would have said something like, mmhm, some things. Here and there, might be deal breakers, not sure. And he’d have had the chance to ask more specific questions and then I could tell him then and there that I don’t like peeing when I’ve eaten asparagus, and therefore don’t really enjoy eating asparagus, and also that when I was 6 I locked my baby cousin in a dark room to make him cry so that when I finally opened the door, he would cling to me because I “saved him”. I could have told him all my things in one shot and he could have decided early on about me.