Frosting, y’all. Because frosting. Froooooossssssstiiiiiiiiinnnnggggggg. I could turn 40 every day if frosting were involved. Frost-to-the-ing. Yes.
“This will be our reply to violence: to make music more intensely, more beautifully, more devotedly than ever before.”
— Leonard Bernstein
As I watched my hometown get invaded by those sick, sick assholes, I was heartbroken. I still am. But I have several reasons to hope, and that’s the only way I can keep moving and not huddle under my blankets sobbing (anymore).
1) The reason violence errupted this weekend was that counterprotesters showed up. They showed up and said, “No, you don’t get to do this.” Would it have been better if violence hadn’t won the day? Yes. But was it important to stand up and say that that kind of hatred won’t be tolerated, and let minorities know that we have their backs and value them them as assets to our community; to let them know they’re not alone – that “they” are really “us.”
2) My friends are arguing about whether it would have been better to show up or to stay away completely so that the white supremacists didn’t get the attention they so desperately want. Let them shout into a void. They stayed away, thinking that if you don’t give them someone to scream at, eventually they’ll just disappear. Some showed up and marched peacefully and silently. Some thought showing up wasn’t enough and decided to fight violence with more violence. I’m torn about what the appropriate response is. I’m not sure there even is an appropriate response. But whatever their opinion on the best way to make the white supremacists go away, they still want to make them go away. That means there are a lot more of us on the side of love than hate.
2) At Jason Kessler’s press conference the next day, counterprotesters showed up and shouted him down and said, “No, you don’t get to do this.” Again, I’m not thrilled that someone ended up punching him, because that makes him look like a victim and I’m not okay with violence, but the people who showed up with pots and pans and cymbals to bang on to drown him out are heroes. They are beautiful, beautiful people standing up for our beautiful, beautiful city and country.
3) On Twitter, people have “outted” many of the white supremacists who attended, and at least one has been fired by a boss who said, “No, you don’t get to do this.” We should be sending equally clear messages to racist and hateful business owners by boycotting their businesses. Luckily, it’s pretty easy to do since, again, I think there are more peaceful, accepting business owners than white supremacists.
4) I attended a vigil in Durham in support of Charlottesville yesterday, and when protesters showed up and started trying to shout over our speakers, we sang them down. We drowned them out with song.
People are speaking up. Yes, more need to, but it’s a start and this weekend was a wake-up call for a hell of a lot of people. However we choose to stand on the side of love, we need to stick together and remember that we are all, still, on the same side.
We need to keep singing. Sing until the hatemongers get the point that their hate isn’t welcome. Sing until our allies know they’re safe and loved. Sing to comfort those trying to heal from this weekend and the hundreds of years of strife in America that came before it. Sing a little extra love and joy into the world.
You guuuuyyyyys! I asked my friend Meghan from Hogan Made to come up with a t-shirt for my hometown, Charlottesville, and she came through. She’s donating $10 from every shirt to the Southern Poverty Law Center. Show an independent artist some love, Charlottesville some love, and a great charitable organization some love: https://squareup.com/store/hoganmade/item/c-ville #noplaceforhate
I know I haven’t posted in over a week. I swear, I’ll try to get back in the swing of things again soon, but my brain has been mush due to the stress about work stuff. I also swear that I’ll explain about that soon. But for right now, I’m just too excited because I found out that I have a fairy godmother!! A month ago, I saw this thing, a Body Chan, pop up in an ad on my Facebook feed:
If you’re not familiar with the little wooden posable figures that they make for artists, this is what they usually look like.
And they suck, because the range of realistic poses for them is severely limited. So I when I saw this thing, I got all want-y and posted on Facebook that I wished it was mine. And since I did, it keeps popping up all over the place because my computer is a pimp and is always trying to get me to buy its tempting shit. But I’ve resisted because, well, I don’t have so much of the monies. And also because I’m a little afraid of pimps. But it’s just been taunting me this whole time.
Today, it arrived in the mail. With no receipt. So I have no idea who sent it. I posted a pic of me with it and asked for the generous culprit to fess up so that I can thank them.
But it’s been 4 hours and no one has. This leads me to the only logical conclusion: I have a freakin’ fairy godmother, y’all!!! So now I’m thinking that I should start wishing for other stuff. Apparently wantiness works. Now that I have my new posable figure, who I have named Jackie (because the figure is called a Body Chan), she’s going to help me demonstrate to my fairy godmother all of my heart’s desires…you know, things like unicorns and calorie-free cheese. You never know. I might have multiple fairy godmothers with different powers like Sleeping Beauty.
I’m turning 40 on September 20th, and I’ve decided that what I really want to commemorate such a momentous birthday – no, what I really need – is 40 cupcakes.
Since I don’t want to be selfish, feel free to suggest things you want and I’ll wish for them for you.
Dearest fairy godmother, thank you for sending me my new best friend, Jackie. After her, you’re the bestest.
So, I’ve been a little…gone, lately. I’ve had everything block – writer’s block, painter’s block, cleaner’s block, balancing-your-checkbook block, eating-healthy-foods block, etc. I have been very good at committing to snuggling with the cats and watching too much TV, though. So there’s that. Things with work have been very up-in-the-air and it’s kind of paralyzing me. I’ll explain soon, but for now, I thought I’d at least pop in and give the internet something it doesn’t have nearly enough *cough* of: CATS.
I suffer from a snuggle deficiency. It’s a serious medical condition and they have not managed to make snuggles in pill form yet, and we all know that fresh is best, so I decided I needed to get another cat. Let’s just all agree that, were my husband to die, I would not date ever again. I’d just get eleventy-twelve more cats. This seems totally reasonable. Luckily, S wasn’t against getting another kitty, so he agreed to go out and look since it’s kitten season and all. He’s such an enabler. Meanwhile, my mom was busy screamtexting me that I was insane. I chose to pretend she was wrong and instead texted pics of adorable kittens like these guys that I found at our local rescues:
But I decided to go home and think about it a little more since my favorite shelter wasn’t open the day we went out to look. The more I thought about it, the more I realized I didn’t want to get a kitten. Kittens are evil. They lure you in with their cuteness, but you don’t know what their true personality will be until they’re at least a year or so old. So they might be all adorable and shit those first few months, but then they turn into the antichrist, or worse – they turn into my little pitten, Dizzy, who is incapable of snuggling without licking your hand incessantly while insisting that you must not in any way do anything that could be vaguely construed as holding him.
We got Keely when she was about a year old, which was perfect because we knew what her real personality was. The downside to her being about 2 years old now, though, is that her most ardent desire is still to play in between snuggles. Dizzy, being about 4 years old, has outgrown that urge. So there were a lot of battles between the 2 that ended with Dizzy yeowling and trying desperately to get out of Keely’s grasp.
So, while we wanted a cat that wasn’t quite a kitten any longer, we also wanted a cat who was close in age to Keely. Enter Madeleine, or Maddie, if you’re tight with her like we are. Like all of our cats, she is named after a jazz singer/musician (in this case, Madeleine Peyroux). We went to the shelter that had been closed the first day that we looked and she immediately claimed us. She is, without a doubt, the happiest little munchkitten you’ll ever meet.
At a whopping 6 pounds, she’s teeny tiny. Based on her teeth, the vet says she’s over a year old. Based on her size, energy, mouthiness, and farts, I’d wager she’s a little younger. Those farts are no joke. I’m hoping the vet is right, though, because if she is that old, she won’t grow anymore and we’ll have a perma-kitten. Yessssss. So now we have small, medium, and large kittehs in Halloween colors (and since S’s favorite holiday is Halloween, he’s thrilled).
When I first brought her home, Maddie and Dizzy bumped noses and were basically like, “You cool? I’m cool. We cool.” Keely, on the other hand, WAS NOT HAVING IT. She was basically like, “Oh, hell no.” She immediately started growling and hissing and carrying on like someone had finished off the last of the bourbon that she’d been dreaming about all day at work (wait, is it just me that dreams about bourbon all day?). After freaking out for a couple hours and wandering around the house hissing at everything that moved or didn’t move or existed or didn’t exist, she ended up hiding behind the curtains.
When S came home, she raced over to the front door and started meowing at him, and we were pretty sure she was saying, ” Dad, you will not believe what Mom brought home today. There’s this thing prancing around my house and thinking she’s hot shit with her color coordinated tail and paws. She is not hot shit. I am hot shit. You need to do something about this, STAT. Oh, and the little brat drank all the bourbon, too.” But then she saw him pet Maddie and lost her damn mind all over again. She spent the bulk of the next week with both resting bitchface and active bitchface permanently affixed to her head, growling and hissing at all of us (and the ghosts that apparently live in the house?).
After figuring out that Maddie had no desire to become the new queen, Keely finally conceded that maybe the world hadn’t ended, and maybe it might be fun to play with the cat that wouldn’t scream bloody murder at her every time she chased her up the stairs, and maybe it wasn’t the end of the world to snuggle up to her mom even though the little cat was also snuggled up to her. Oh, and maybe she would enjoy the fact that her parents were giving her more tuna juice than usual in their efforts to make everyone settle in.
So now my phone is full of pictures like this that I text to my mom to prove that this was, in fact, the best decision ever:
And now Dizzy can enjoy getting an occasional break from Keely’s playfulness:
You may remember that, last year, I applied for and received a grant to help me publish Fractured Memories. I realized that I never properly or publicly acknowledged who provided the grant, and I want to do that now. The United Arts Council of Raleigh and Wake County essentially sponsored the book with a generous grant. I’m preparing my final report for them now that the book is complete and out there for the world to see, and realized that I definitely spent way more than the grant awarded, but it was absolutely invaluable in two ways: 1) it allowed me to justify taking some time off from teaching classes because I knew that it was paying for me to hire my instructors to cover those shifts, and 2) it affirmed for me that the project was worth pursuing. We all need a little external affirmation now and then, and getting it from an “official” arts program gave me more confidence going into the writing and publishing process.
So a huge thank you goes out to the United Arts Council of Raleigh and Wake County for helping achieve a dream and further my career as an artist in many senses of the word.
Brittany, from BrittanyReads, posted her spring indie author wrap-up on youtube, and included a review of my book, Fractured Memories. So now you don’t have to read the review, you can watch it, because screw reading, amiright? Oh, wait. The review of my book starts at around 4 minutes 45 seconds. Please go show her channel a little love, and check out some more indie books!
art, art book, book about dementia, book review, caregiver, caregiving, dementia, dementia art, dementia writing, Fractured Memories, gift for caregiver, Raleigh artist, Raleigh author, self-publishing
Hello there, glorious Fractured Memories readers!! As you all know, I opted to self-publish Fractured Memories: Because Demented People Need Love, Too, which means that promoting it is up to me. So I’m going to do some uber-begging. First, in order for books (eBooks, soft cover, or hard cover) to be seen on Amazon, they need to have at least 25 reviews. So far, I have 7. That means I need to get at least eleventy more (I’m good at art and writing, not math, people). That means I need help. That means that, if you read and liked the book, you could write a review on Amazon. That means that people would know the book exists. That means people would buy it. That means I wouldn’t have to live off of ramen noodles, which are terrible for my triglyceride counts. Instead, I could live off of cheese, which is equally bad for my triglyceride counts but so much tastier. It also means that I could support my bourbon habit, which sterilizes my insides, washing all those triglycerides out (yup, I’m pretty sure that’s how it works).
And now, another big ask: if you liked the book, tell someone you actually know! You can post about it on social media, or just tell a friend who you think would like it. If they’ve been a caregiver, they’ll be saying, “Me, too!” the whole time they’re reading it. If they haven’t been a caregiver, you’re prepping them for something that most of us will go through at one time or another with a parent or spouse or friend; or, you’re helping them know how to be a better support for the caregivers they know. Win-win! If they want to order a print copy (or if you want to order a copy for them), they can do so on my website at http://shop.emilypageart.com/ (I make more money this way than on Amazon, AND they’ll save a little money, too). If they’re not interested, try describing the book as “a staggering work of genius,” or “the best thing that ever was – EVER.” If they’re still not interested, they sound like pretty boring people and you should probably not be friends with them anymore.
Many, many (and a few more) thanks in advance!!
art book, artist interview, author interview, caregiver memoir, dementia book, Emily Page Art, Emily Page artist, Emily Page author, Fractured Memories, home makeover, memoir, purchasing a home, real estate
Okay, so this is kind of random, but the folks over at Urhous, a real estate company, asked me to do an interview. They’ve done a series of these videos with past buyers, and the one they did for me went live today:
The IndieView just posted an interview with me about my book, Fractured Memories: Because Demented People Need Love, Too. Head on over and check it out! Then browse the rest of their site for other great author interviews.