Every day, I try a different writing exercise, to varying results. For a while I was using a website that replicates the Oblique Strategies cards. Unfortunately, while I love them, they’re imperfect for guidance in writing. Now I use this service called Figment, which is the project of two former New Yorker staffers. I’m not familiar with the actual website, but their mailing list offers daily creative prompts by email that I do like a lot. It can be tempting to ignore them along with the literally thousands of emails from overzealous PR people that are currently choking my inbox (please, please fuck off, you guys), but I’ve been trying to persevere. The one I chose today was the following:
“Make a list of 20 angry words — they can be words related to anger or words that just sound mad. Now write about something you love/cherish/revere using as many of these words as you can.”
And I did that, but only the first part. Not even the whole first part, either. I typed sixteen words out before I realized that I didn’t want to hitch them to the song above, which I was listening to at the time and do truly love, cherish, and revere. I thought it was a really good coincidence that it started playing right as I was straining to come up with “blister,” “scam,” “chain,” and thirteen other clumsy examples of what might get pulled alongside anger.
The exercise probably would have worked out really well if I had seen it through with this song in mind. But you know what? I’d prefer to apply those negative ideas to things that truly deserve them, like incessant messages from publicists. What I’d rather say about this song, and almost everything else that ever came out on Creation Records, is just that it’s really the best music I know. And, accordingly, that this also makes me really happy:
Quinn wrote the “chao bella” part. Also, right after this, she wrote “It’s like America Online but in the real world.”
Holy everloving fuck has it been nice to not be in class and/or worrying about class all the time over these past few weeks. Instead, I’ve been spending my time over this hollandaise break tearing up at how dreamily beautiful Talk Talk’s Laughing Stock is and reading, reading, reading. It’s a good thing I can do both at once, because it’s impossible to pick which I love more.
Some of my favorite reading material at current can be found in the pages of WORN Fashion Journal, a newfound Toronto-based love, and The Paris Review, an older one (although I’m properly subscribed now instead of just buying single issues or swiping them from the OWS library, RIP). With that subscription came a note written in calligraphy that reads, “For Amy Rose…quately inspiration for her literary ride xoxo.” How can I not love TPR even more when you realize that sometimes even they absentmindedly misspell easy words and use grade-school-grade signatures? I bet when George Plimpton was alive he was basically just like me but with white hair and way more into baseball. Also, falconry, and if you don’t click on that link you’re really, really, missing out on something special.
I fell in love with WORN today while nursing a Jarritos and a horrible, awful vodka-and-champagne hangover from last night. Issue 13 was sent over to me last week by the lovely Anna Fitzpatrick, a fellow writer for ROOKIE and WORN’s web editor, and seeing as I was basically bedridden today, I finally had some time to spend with it. I’m so glad I did – the first full spread was an homage to the bygone fashion of moms by their children, and it was as incredible as that sounds. I appreciated seeing all different body types and skin colors in the spread, not to mention in the magazine on the whole. I was also really into the article that directly followed it, “Unbinding Binaries” by Alyssa Garrison, which explored clothing’s role in the lives of people who don’t identify with traditional genders. Although WORN does look at fashion in a way that often reads like cultural criticism, it’s also accessible and pleasurable in the way that only magazines are to read. Now I just need a subscription and a misspelled note to match.
Oh, also, I recently learned how to say grapefruit in Spanish because of Jarritos, a soda to which I’m grateful for many more reasons than just ~*~expanding my (fruit-based) horizons~*~ and being the perfect hangover cure, incidentally. Anyway, toronja, and adios for now. Happy New Year.