Tuesday, March 28, 2017

not like before

mwahahaha i love march. i love the weird weather that's happening here, mostly because it feels like winter is still hanging on. yessssss.

see, i'm already feeling a little sad that the beautiful cold weather and snow is leaving us soon. i mean, spring is okay - i like seeing everything go green, and i have nice toronto memories in the springtime - but it's summer that's my nemesis. at least this year i'll be working in an air-conditioned office during the daytime from monday to friday, but the rest of the time will be spent in my godawful overheated apartment. (this can be solved by finally - finally - getting an a/c unit installed, but i've held off because it's going to cost me extra on my rent plus it'll block my window view. i'm ridiculous.)



anyway, if you thought i've calmed down after the previous blog post about being festival-bound, you are incorrect! see, one thing about me is that i'm a weird control freak when it comes to planning trips, even if they're far in the distance (three months isn't all that far, though). i really, really love making packing lists and to-do lists and planning outfits. i hate being caught unawares or without a backup plan for anything, so i'll endlessly go over scenarios in my mind and how i need to prepare.

for example: since the festival website says no bags or "large purses", i'm not willing to take a chance with any of my purses (i'm taking the shuttle bus in from ottawa and it only goes once a day; what would happen if i got told i couldn't enter the festival with my bag?), so i ordered a money belt. yes, pretty much a goddamn fanny pack, but hopefully thinner and less dorky. it may end up being a decision i should have made a long time ago (i hate having to carry a bag at concerts), or it could still end up being dorky. who knows? either way, i'm gonna be stuck with it, since i need something to hold my cash/credit cards/passport/eyeliner.

i'm also way, way excited to do a goth-rock take on the festival hipster look. i'm already planning on a lot of face glitter, red eyeshadow, many necklaces and rubber bracelets, and a headband i have that's a crown of black roses. (god knows how this look will hold up after spending entire days outside in the heat, but we'll find out as we go) and an all-black wardrobe that shows some skin, clearly, because i am a single girl and not above such things. really wish i could take a gamble on this badass spiked crown:



but i'm too afraid security would confiscate it because pointy :(

so with all this advance planning comes the strict knowledge that i need to tighten up my spending; although i can definitely cover the trip's expenses, it means leaner times all around for a bit (aka i don't have as much fun money to buy whatever i want with). however, i feel like i'm pretty well covered, for the moment - i have enough makeup and skin care products, my liquor/wine purchases have gone way down since i stopped drinking at night (i realized how much it was fucking up my sleep patterns, so now i only drink with friends in the early evenings a couple times a week), and i have a good stockpile of bath bombs handy:


never discount the joy of bathing in glitter-filled water.

also - and i ought to feel guilty about this, but i don't - i already had a bunch of wrestling t-shirt orders in the can before i splurged on my rockfest trip. i already received this one:



i had to. i had to. i'm weak.

and if that wasn't enough, i bought not just one but two new t-shirts from pro wrestling tees. i kept thinking of the upcoming warmer weather! i'm sorry! (but they're both gonna look sooooo gooooood.)

sigh. stop shopping, dumbass.

in the meantime, suddenly i've been seeing more (cheap) movies than i have in ages. my father likes to say that i get that from my grandfather, but truthfully, i can't measure up to my dad himself - i think he sees at least one movie in the kingston theatres every week. but i saw logan last weekend, as i already blogged about, and before that, i saw kedi, aka the movie that was made for me - a documentary about the semi-feral street cats of istanbul. i swear, i only cried twice. (and they were "overcome with emotion" tears - i promise, none of the cats die in the film)

plus, i'm fairly sure there'll be an eventual screening of this little gem:

(the movie is called the lure, by the way.)

honestly, i never thought "getting into indie cinema" would have been a thing i'd do in 2017, but there are so many little arthouses around here with a ton of interesting programming that it's hard to resist. i've never needed all the bells and whistles of the hyper-modern theatres; in fact, the overall ticket cost of those showings is super prohibitive to me. i'm much happier paying $10 or less to go to a tiny second-run theatre, or supporting community programming with their creative screenings.

that's all i've got for now. be safe, i love you.

[ music | none ]

Sunday, March 26, 2017

summer dreaming

so in between the last blog post and this one, this happened:

A post shared by Caitlin H. (@mylovesubliminal) on

obvious narrative is obvious: i was so jazzed by the rammstein film that i checked their website to see if they were touring anytime soon. lo and behold, they were playing one province over in only three months' time! (and then, like, only european festivals and a few american dates) faced with either that option or simply waiting until they had a toronto date on the next album tour (whenever that is, and apparently not til 2018), i chose the path staring me right in the face. so in june, i'm off to quebec (and ottawa, where i'll be staying since it's right next door and all of montebello is booked up) for rockfest.

granted, it's a far more expensive path than waiting for a show here; aside from the weekend pass itself, i also have to pay for the greyhound to ottawa, accommodations (but i've booked at a backpacker's inn in downtown ottawa, which keeps the cost down), and an ottawa shuttle bus to get to and from montebello on the friday and saturday. i also forked out big time for the "front stage zone" pass rather than the general admission or reserved seating, because i want to at least be a little comfortable, and the front stage zone pass allows access to a private bar/restroom/tent plus the front stage area (which i'm assuming is close enough to front row, my home and native land). i'm a little spoiled by now, i can admit it.

honestly though, it's no more than i paid for my lollapalooza trip back in 2006 (and i managed to do that on like no money), and i'm way into seeing more of the bands at rockfest than i was at that particular lolla. i'm definitely down to see afi, the offspring (performing ixnay on the hombre! you know i'm gonna scream along to "all i want"), qotsa, pup, grimskunk, the birthday massacre, and plenty others. but yeah, for sure i'm going for rammstein. the website touts this show as being the north american premiere of their new stage production, which like, fuck yes. can't wait to get hit in the face with foam from a giant dick cannon. (please let there still be a giant dick cannon.)

anyway, i'm just super stoked because i haven't been to a big festival proper in ages. i don't count all the toronto music festivals i've been to in the past few years; they usually only required a quick subway ride. it's a completely different adventure when you're travelling to get somewhere and staying for a couple nights of loud rock madness, and man oh man have i missed those days. i've been travelling for bands since i was 17 and i'm always so nostalgic for it.

am i going with anybody? i'm...not sure yet? i have a couple of friends who've expressed interest, but so far i've booked everything only for myself, because 1) i'm impatient and 2) i never really expect to have company. honestly, i'm more than okay going to rockfest by myself (or else just making friends while i'm there), but i do hope i can share the experience with a pal or two. we'll see how it shakes out.

time to go plan out how much black i can wear in june without dying of heatstroke.

[ music | none ]

Saturday, March 25, 2017

set the night on fire

so since spring is coming and i want to make sure i'm doing all the fun things in 2017, i went to see a rammstein film on thursday.


i found this poster up on a community billboard the next day and you are damn right i snagged it for my bedroom wall.

i'd forgotten, really, how much i'd loved that band in my late teens and early twenties. they were a huge reason why my very first class in my very first year of university was german 100. people love to shit-talk how weird the german language is, but i've always adored how brutal and intimidating it can sound - especially when it happens to be rammstein (which i'd initially started listening to when i was 16 in order to disturb my parents - blasting "du hast" and "links 2-3-4" tend to do that - but then i fell hard for the angry deutsche industrial metal). nowadays? ehhh meine deutsche ist nicht sehr gut, but i have a passable understanding of it, anyway. (i can pick out a lot of words, but don't ask me to extensively conjugate verbs or anything. nein, bitte)

so now it's 2017, and when i saw that the royal was showing rammstein: paris - as it turns out, on a "world premiere" day when theatres around the world would be screening it (it's a filmed concert from 2012 that's only getting released now) - i was immediately down to reunite with my old lieben. along with fellow rammstein/all-things-german lover jenna (who actually got to see them in hamburg in 2001, and i was very jealous), we got some wine in us before we headed to the theatre to check it out.

and oh my god, it was a total blast.



honestly, i've been going to concerts for almost 18 years now, and i've never seen anything like a rammstein stage show. it was less of a concert than it was a theatrical production - props! costumes! fake blood! set changes! - surrounding live music. (plus: so much pyro. so many flamethrowers. every time you thought they couldn't top themselves, a bigger flamethrower or pyro cannon would appear onstage.) it didn't even feel weird to be clapping and cheering for what was essentially a movie, nor was it out of place for much of the crowd to be headbanging along and pumping a few fists as well. i was howling with delight at the full-on insanity of it, you guys. (i don't know how many times i excitedly yelled "whaaaaattt the fffffuuuuuckkk" at the screen)



a few other things i really love had bearing on this, i think: wagner (less on the man's gross politics, obviously, but more on the loud, intense german operas that he was famous for composing), fire (big fan), and sheer spectacle. i love me an over-the-top stage show, which probably also explains why i love pro wrestling so much (i'm a sucker for pyro, no matter what the setting), and it likely stems from growing up in a family that cherished andrew lloyd webber musicals. i saw the phantom of the opera, cats, oklahoma!, jesus christ superstar, and beauty & the beast before i was even 13. i've always had a soft spot for a stage production and, combined with my love of the gothic, dark, and absolutely bizarre, rammstein: paris was so satisfying that i wanted a cigarette afterward.



also, as with the omnipresent wrestling in my life, there's something just so fun about being reminded why you loved a thing (in this case, a very loud band) when you were younger, and then falling for it all over again. because it's not quite out of the blue, and you aren't a brand-new fan, so you at least have some foundation and background to your enjoyment. i was so into it that i went home and bought their made in germany: 1995-2011 compilation album just so i could catch up on what i'd missed (and have "engel" and "sonne" take me right back to spending all my time in my mom's basement, tapping around on the early-ish internet).

plus, since i don't go to as many concerts anymore, it's a real kick to see and remember onstage musicians again. as any of my girls (and boys) know, once you've loved a musician - any musician, and god knows i've devoted myself to more than my fair share - you'll see them in all the others. i mean, i can spot all the traditional rock star motions: the guitarist lunges, the one foot up on the amp, the two guitarists playing back to back, the jump-splits, the drumstick spins in between cymbal crashes, everything. i can still name every component of a drum kit by sight or sound. i can still pick out the bass line even when it's seemingly buried and hear how it locks in with the rhythm section. as someone who's always either been backstage, side stage, front row, or in the studio, it's that kind of stuff you never really forget.

the best way i can put it is that it feels like coming back to someone you used to have a crush on and being like, "ohhhh right, that's why i had such a thing for you." although it can be hard on me, like i detailed in this blog post, it always, always fills me with such crazy joy, and it's a feeling like nothing else. watching live music of any scale or capacity is the strongest reminder to myself of why i gave so much of myself and so many years of my life to the shows and the bands. because i fucking believed in what they all do, and i still believe. sometimes it just takes a reminder, that's all.

anyway, the dvd/blu-ray release is available for pre-order, and if you're a fan of the over-the-top and the bizarre and the nsfw (like, really nsfw. there are dick cannons), you should think about picking it up. (especially if you mostly just want to watch guitarist richard, who is a stone fox.) get more sinister-sounding industrial music into your life, as i once chose to do when i was bored and disaffected and growing up in the small-town suburbs.

laterrrrrrrrrrr

[ music | none ]

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

memento mori

okay so i saw logan last weekend and i have a lot of thoughts and emotions!!

A post shared by Caitlin H. (@mylovesubliminal) on

some background: when i wrote fiction as a teenager (because that was indeed a thing i did), i always centered my stories around asshole antiheroes. something about them always seemed cooler and more relatable to me. they were more human, because they're flawed and fucked up and can't quite be the hero but they aren't evil enough to be the villain either. they're conflicted, and they struggle.

i kind of think i always wanted to be an asshole antihero, myself. i never cared if i got a happy ending, so long as i got an interesting story. (i still feel that way, actually.) also, nobody ever fucks with the asshole antiheroes for long, and given that the world was already fucking with me since i was a girl, i needed all the defenses i could get.

yet as i look back on my deep love of antiheroes, i'm 95% sure that most of it was informed by wolverine. he was basically the prototype for so many of these characters, and while he wasn't my favourite mutant (i'd have to go with psylocke here), he was the guy, you know? if you want angry and tortured, logan was your guy. that complexity was fascinating to me, and it always rang true in the stuff i wrote, too.

so of course i was glad that he was more or less made the centre of the x-men cinematic universe; i always thought hugh jackman did an a+ job in the role (who cares that he's not short when he's that good? they can't all be as 100% perfect as rdj or sam jackson) and although x-men origins: wolverine was trash, the wolverine was a great little movie. i loved all the angst over the loss of jean and the reluctant heroism from a dude who'd probably rather be left alone in the canadian wilderness, you know?

all of that was amped up to 11 for logan, the final movie in the series and the coda to the wolverine story. and when i saw it last weekend, i was not prepared.



it wrecked me. rekt, as the kids these days would say.

as i said on twitter, it wasn't quite so heartbreaking as the moment in civil war when tony confronted steve on the murder of his parents (robert downey jr. fucking slayed that scene), but man oh man did it ever stay with me. i just lay awake that night thinking about the ending and feeling hollow inside.

it had something to do with the fact that the series was essentially over (not counting the first class/days of future past side series, and i still haven't seen x-men: apocalypse and i feel bad about that), and i'd excitedly watched the x-men movies ever since the first one in 2000. as a diehard marvel fangirl who loved the x-men unreservedly when she was a kid/teen, i was over the moon to get to see that world brought to life.

but now it's 2017, and without spoilers - though i mean, it's not hard to guess - the series is over. and while i didn't love all of the movies, it's sort of haunting to realize that it's finished now, and something i loved right back to when i was 16-17 is done forever. (can't wait to feel this again when infinity war is over! jk)

i wrote about it before in this blog post from last june, but here's some of my truncated thoughts on the concept of pop culture and finality (which i've always had a hard time with):

i think, as i get older - like, out of my twenties and into my thirties - i'm starting to realize more of a concept of finality. as in, that deep-seated feeling when you know something's over for good, and won't ever be that way ever again...

and sure, it may be silly pop-culture things, but for a lot of us those things are nice distractions... i still remember all those years i watched true blood, and even though it wasn't a great show by the end, there was something oddly comforting about how, even though my life changed a lot across the progress of the show, the show was still there. you know what i mean? life's pretty turbulent, and we all need some things to cling to, to remind us that the world goes on. and when those things end too, it hurts right down to the bones, because you've lost one more little thing that marked a few years of your life.

it's weird, isn't it? but i think it's valid. i've loved pop culture and works of fiction my entire life, and it always feels strange to realize one of those universes is now closed forever. (even though yes, i know no one ever stays dead in comics, but...)

and honestly, i am completely, entirely aware that much of my view of finality is coloured by the fact that i haven't yet experienced the death of anyone close to me. i have a hard time coming to grips with the concept of death; i can't comprehend how someone can be here one day and then gone the next. even the concept of aging makes me feel weird and uncomfortable. but we're all doing it, all the time, and i can only hope that some day i accept that this is how it is.

even the immortal, never-aging wolverine is an old man in the newest movie, with a story based around the death of heroes in a universe that has long since moved on. the world of fiction has always run closer to real life than we realize half the time.

so those are my thoughts, but mostly my feelings, so i'll close by saying go see the movie when you can - it's a powerful statement on mortality, sacrifice, and release, not just for comic book fans.

[ music | phantogram, "you don't get me high anymore" ]

Monday, March 20, 2017

both never to come back

(originally written on sunday march 5, 2017)

so last night i saw the tea party, my original favourite band, play live for the first time in ages.



i've probably mentioned it before - because it is fucking hilarious - but they were the second band i ever interviewed, as well as the first band i ever interviewed in person. imagine that you're 20 years old and you've only been a music writer for maybe three months before you get sent to go conduct a one-on-one interview with the band whose albums made you fall in love with music. my nerves were shot to hell but i was so, so goddamn excited. (i kept thinking about the tea party poster that had been on my wall throughout my teenage years, and how the first ever "real" rock concert i saw was the tea party playing brockville riverfest in 2000 - who'd have thought, four years later...)

but the interview went swimmingly, despite my nerves on the outset - i've even pulled up the transcript and the caliber of questions 20-year-old me is asking are fairly impressive - and i even ended up interviewing them twice more in the years that followed. they remembered me every time. it was a real delight, and honestly, after that milestone was reached pretty much all of my interviews were cakewalks after. (i still got the nerves for dave gahan from depeche mode and nikki sixx from motley crue, though.)

so that was the majority of my background with them, and although they haven't been touring for years, when i found out they were doing a special night in celebration of the 20th anniversary of my favourite of their albums - 1997's transmission - i had to get my ticket. on the way to the danforth music hall, i kept trying to recall how many times i've seen them live, but holy shit, i couldn't even remember. i mean, at least three or four times over the years.

the good news was that their stage show in 2017 was still as awesome as ever, with a huge wall of sound and incredible technical skill. the first half was indeed the entirety of transmission, although played out of order, and it sounded just as good as it always has - honestly, the full album is amazing, one of those rare works where every single song is playable, no skipping required. then there was a brief intermission before the band came back and played a shorter set of non-transmission hits, including "fire in the head", "save me" (which i have honestly never, ever liked but whatever), "the messenger", and the usual covers of "paint it black" and "heroes". plus i swear i haven't listened to "sister awake" in, fuck, probably a decade? yet i still remembered every word, like a muscle memory. so good.



i also sat up in the reserved seating in the balcony, for once, because ugh holy shit i didn't need to be down in the pit. once upon a time, i would have refused anything but being directly in the center of the action (or the front row, obviously), but nowadays i pick my battles, and i decided i could do with a balcony view this time.

it felt a bit hilarious being there in that crowd, though, regardless of where i was in the venue:

i try really, really hard, you guys.

overall, though, i had a great time - although i can't lie that it felt like a cleansing of sorts, but it also felt deeply sad to me. because i'm not who i used to be, and being at live shows really brings that forward for me, with all the memories and the ghosts.

see, here's a secret: i rarely ever go see live bands anymore. i know, i know - me, who's got all forms of music tattoos and used to live for the bands and the nightlife, just...stopped. it's at the point where it makes me really wistful and melancholy, even, to go out to shows now - because it brings back so many memories, and just reminds me of a time in my life when it was my entire world, and i was so happy for it. but it's borderline painful for me to do it now.

why did i drop out of the scene? because as i told a friend last year, it's got to be all or nothing for me. i can't be half-in and half-out; i have to be fully in or not at all. and by the time i broke up with my old boyfriend in 2012 and, you know, carried on with the stuff i did after, i made my exodus from the scene. it became way too difficult to be half-in it. i felt like a weird pariah for what i'd done, and like i didn't belong anymore, despite devoting a good ten years of my life to live music and the bars and the boys and the front row. they say you need to reclaim your spaces after a breakup; in 2012-13, i rescinded them. those spaces belonged to the boys in the band; i, a lapsed groupie rapidly reaching her best-before date of 30 years old, was only ever visiting.

this all ties into the fact that i had a moment last month, where i was out on my balcony drinking at sunset, and when i turned to go back inside i was struck with the sudden thought of oh god, am i still me?

because look: we're all composites of our past experiences. we're all made up of the things that have happened to us, and the things we've gone through to bring us to where we are today. the future has no bearing on our current selves, so we have to make do with having our pasts be the building blocks of our identity.

but here's the thing, the very thing i've struggled with lately: the idea that you do change over the years, and that the person you once were is no longer the person you are now. i'm not just talking in a physical sense with aging and everything, i mean motivations and driving forces and beliefs and entire lifestyles. it might just be me, because i'm a weirdo, but do you ever think back on your childhood and realize that you - yes, you - lived it? it wasn't just some movie or tv show you watched at some point - it was actually your life that you lived.

and really, what bothers me deeply is that i am so far from the person i was 10-15 years ago, to the point where i doubt i'd recognize myself now. and if i'm being very honest, i'm pretty sure the me of 10-15 years ago would have fallen on her sword if she knew that one day, everything she held dear would mean less to nothing at all.

am i still the person i was when i thought i would never change? what happens when the foundation you built yourself on ends up crumbling over time? what happens when your past wrote cheques that your present can't cash?

anyway, that's all.


[ music | phantogram, "nothing but trouble" ]

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

invoking the fates

i know, i know - i already tweet endlessly about wrestling about as it is and a good 60% of you are likely sick of it by now. but hey, why not continue the pattern here where you can easily click the little x in the top-right corner? honestly, i ain't even mad.

A post shared by Caitlin H. (@mylovesubliminal) on

but you know, it's nice that i'm at the point now where nobody can even think of questioning my commitment. i mean, a few weeks ago i got myself up at just after 5 a.m. so i could watch a live wrestling ppv from japan - and i didn't do it for, with, or because of anyone. (that's important to signify, as i was once so nuts about a guy i got up at 4 a.m. to live-tweet the world junior championship of hockey in hopes that he'd be impressed. he was up doing the same, but he completely ignored me. welp.)

and you know what? i had the best fucking time. on the sunday morning, i dumped a bunch of baileys into my coffee (i was also wearing a dalton castle shirt and space undies), and on both days, i sat in the dark huddled under a blanket on my couch as the sun came up outside. i spent those early hours watching two of my favourite promotions do battle with each other, and it was awesome. the matches were great fun, the community conversation online was hilarious, and i had an extra spring in my step both the sunday and monday, despite the early waking hours.

because holy shit, i love wrestling, and i love the internet wrestling community. it feels good to be a part of something, as well as to have that something be a wonderful distraction from real-life bullshit.

a weekend project from a couple weeks back:

A post shared by Caitlin H. (@mylovesubliminal) on

i also went to a wwe house show last weekend - my first wwe event since toronto wrestling weekend back in november - and it was great fun:






i always show up a little apprehensive and then end up wishing the wwe was here every weekend.

continuing along the same topic, a few weeks ago i was asked to appear on the cageside seats live podcast gabbin' bout grapplin', and it's been archived here. if you've ever wanted to hear what my voice sounds like, then there you go. (though it's completely true what i say at the beginning - i hate the sound of my own voice, so i actually haven't listened to this whole thing through)

it was pretty fun, though, especially given how nervous i was; i'd never appeared on a podcast before, since i'd always generally tried to avoid doing public speaking stuff because i'm super self-conscious of how quickly i speak. also, additional nerves here given how worried i was about talking live about wrestling - what if i say the wrong thing? what if i say something dumb? again, there's an additional level of "proving myself" that i feel i have to go through, given that i'm a woman talking about professional wrestling. it's so much easier to get hit with the "well, you're not a real fan" if i fuck up a name or a reference.

fortunately, that wasn't the case, and it ended up being a blast even though technical difficulties cut us off early. it's good to do things that 1) terrify you and 2) give you confidence in the end.

see, i was told not too long ago that i'm something of a oddity, here; although it's more common now to see female sports fans (especially up here when it comes to hockey), it's still not so common to see female pro wrestling fans. oh sure, there are a ton of us online - i know a lot of them, and they're some of my favourite people to chat graps with - but in person and at shows, the gender parity is still huge. i'm usually one of the only women, whether that's a quarter of a crowd or a small event. (my mother: "oh honey, but you love that." and it's one of the truest things about me, probably.)

and not only am i just showing up, i am super fucking invested. want me to name the differences between fcw, icw, and czw? i can do that. want me to rattle off most of the members of bullet club past and present? sure. want me to tell you about some indy talent both local and international who deserve a bigger stage? done. i'll talk your ear off about which finishers are the best, who's the strongest promo in the building, and the finer points of heeling out/slow-burn builds/character scoping. this is all stuff i've learned by osmosis, and research, and by asking others; i come by it honestly, because i'm interested, and i'm fascinated.

again - because i want to know. because i want to do this stuff for me.

here's the thing: when i really love something, i plant my feet and i make a space for myself in the fandom. i demand that i be allowed in, regardless of my gender. it's always been that way with me and wrestling, right back to when i was a teenage tomboy. i refuse to feel like the odd one out or like i don't belong, just because women are still the minority in the pro wrestling fandom. in my mind, i have every right to be here, and nobody's gonna tell me otherwise. (to be fair, the wrestling fandom is and has been far more welcoming towards women than the hockey fandom was. by a long shot.)

okay gotta go byeeeeeeeee

[ music | florence + the machine, "only if for a night" ]

Monday, March 13, 2017

anticipation

hello, we're back. told you i'd stick around! here's my dumb face to prove it:

A post shared by Caitlin H. (@mylovesubliminal) on

i'd like to thank good genes, expensive face care products, and my own unwillingness to dress my age for helping me look far younger than my 33 years.

anyway, it's interesting because even upon reopening this here blog, i do have friends who sort of look at me funny and ask why i'm willing to be so open online. this always kind of gives me pause, because i put a lot of value in their opinions, and if they think i should be more hesitant then it does make me second-guess myself.

...but then again, i remind myself that people (not just my mother) have always been side-eyeing me for my blogging tendencies, and i have always simply shrugged and kept on. this is the only form of self-expression i really know. i just need something more permanent and longer-form than twitter, you know? (but like, follow me there, too)

so now that we're almost rolling on into spring, i've been planning ahead for what i'm going to get up to in the coming months. since i've once again got a steady source of income, i'm able to plan for a lot more things than i was when i was living on the freelancer's poverty line. here's what's on the docket so far:

april: smash wrestling's new girl in town show is the only big thing on my schedule so far (unless you also count my best friend's birthday party, which may or may not be also as big, depending on what she wants to do), and i'm pretty, pretty stoked. i only have a general admission ticket, because i was still pretty poor from paying for a lot of wrestling-related stuff, but i'm hoping i can get a good spot because - they're moving to a new venue, which happens to be one of my oldest clubbing standbys from my early 20's: the phoenix. no more taking two modes of transportation to get to etobicoke! also, this card is insane (so far):

fuck yes.

may: a whole amazing ton of stuff, and a huge reason why i'm trying to lay low and save a lot of money right now while there's nothing really going on. with may comes the wrestling show i am more excited about than anything, ring of honor's war of the worlds here just off the danforth, followed by another smash wrestling show one week later. i'm taking the may 2-4 long weekend to go back to kingston and see my family, but before that happens, i'm going to find the time to get my next tattoo (big hint: it's going to be timed closely with world goth day, may 20th). so a bit of travel, a bit of wrestling, and a bit of new ink. all very good.

june: new wrestling promotion to check out, destiny world wrestling, is bringing in the uk's pete dunne for their show in etobicoke in june, so i kind of have to be there? i mean, for sure i do. it's a hike to get way out to the west side - one reason i'm way excited that smash has moved their shows to downtown - but i feel like it'll be worth it.

july: here comes more of the major fun times - there may be the annual cottage weekend for me and my girlfriends (it might get pushed to august, depending on everyone's schedules), but there's also going to be my return to chicago the weekend of the 15th, this time for (what else) a wrestling event - aaw! this will additionally be my first time meeting up with a number of likeminded female wrestling fans in the area, so not only will i have my regular chicago good times of hanging with my bro and invading every trader joe's i see, but i'll also get to mark out with ladyfriends. hell yes.

august: i'm back to new york for the first time since 2010! and again, for what - a wrestling show, obvs. it's ring of honor's field of honor that month, in which they set up a ring on a baseball diamond in jersey and do an entire show of tv tapings there. it looks so amazingly ridiculous that i can't wait to be there this year, and i'm definitely willing to pay what it takes (although i may go with a flight/hotel combo rather than my other shoestring standby of bus/hostel).

so! that's it so far. in between, i have to keep some money aside for things like dental appointments (not cheap, but significantly cheaper now that i have health coverage through my job), tax season (ughhhhh), and stuff to do around town to keep me busy. it's been fun just taking some time and going to events so i can work on my photography - like so, the winter stations at my old neighbourhood of the beach:





and the toronto light festival down in the distillery district:





i'd made a vow to up my photos this year, so head on over to my instagram for more (and more being added all the time - probably too much, but fuck it).

lastly, a list of my dumbest luxuries lately:

- sephora orders
- bath bombs from lush (particularly intergalactic and the experimenter)
- red wine (this is real good)
- wrestling t-shirts
- getting chinese food delivered

talk to me again in a month when the above luxuries have made me too poor for the above above plans.

[ music | the tea party, "cathartik" ]

Sunday, March 12, 2017

stay in the picture



well, here we are again. i lasted, what, a little over a month? lolzzzzzz

here's an explanation as to why i felt like i needed to shut down: i was starting to get worried about all the personal writing i did. i started thinking, i don't know if this really serves me well, anymore. does blogging about my emotions benefit me, at all, in the eyes of anyone reading? i guess my motivation has always been to be a three-dimensional person; i have always wanted to be transparent about who i am, both the good things and the not-so-good things.

but at the same time, look - if someone had never met me in person before and didn't know what i was like in real life, how would they perceive me based on the stuff i write online? would they think i was interesting and worth getting to know better in person, or would they think that i'm too intense and strange and come with too much baggage, so like, hard pass? (because i swear, even though a lot of people are completely different online than they are in person, i am one hundred percent the same person i am online. i'm every bit as excitable and loud and weird as i am on here.)

so i was already conflicted on this, and then i talked to my mother, and she summed it up perfectly (after acknowledging that she has no understanding of how or why my generation overshares as much as they do; "back when i was younger, we either wrote things down in diaries or called each other on the phone"): "you're giving away too much of yourself for free. people don't have to get to know you - they can just look you up and read about you and your thoughts. and, that means they could also potentially judge you before they even meet you."

"plus at a point it's like giving them ammunition, too."

"absolutely it is."

(something i ought to note here, however, is that i have never given out the full story. i've always held back so many details, whether for my own sake or for the sake of others involved. there's still so much i don't talk about, and so much i wish i could, but i'm smarter than that. i need to keep some things for myself, whether in my own defense or because i promised to keep their secrets.)

and then it became, holy shit, that's exactly right - why do people even need to know what i'm doing? let them wonder what i'm up to. if they're really interested in getting to know me, they can do it in person. because these days, there is a sort of power in logging off and staying silent. there's leverage in simply keeping to yourself and letting others just speculate on what you might be doing. i remember thinking, if people aren't in my life, then they don't need to have a window into my life.

but then i kept thinking about the flip side.

the thing that i kept coming back to was twofold: that i've always blogged because i only really figure myself out through the public writing process (i need an audience; paper and/or private diaries never do it for me), and that i also like doing it because sometimes it can benefit other people as well. honestly, i've always put myself out there through this because i want to know i'm not alone in how i'm feeling, and it's absolutely rewarding when i get responses of "you're not alone, i feel/have felt that way too" from other people.

and this has happened! it's totally happened over the years. i've gotten comments and tweets and even emails from people who've read my screaming into the void and want to say that they know how i feel, because they feel the same. and i do believe that that's one of the most base parts of the human condition: needing to know that you aren't alone. it's true for me, and it's true for my audience.

anyway, this is my way of saying that i'm gonna try to course correct, here, and focus more on things being generally okay and not a total trash fire (in my life, i mean, not the world at large - i think it's too late for the world at large, personally). i know, it's my blog and i should feel okay about writing whatever i want, but honestly, this is a public thing and i can never be sure whose eyes are on it. i don't want things inferred or taken out of context, which is unfortunately easy when you're as vague as i can be. and i want to tread lightly, because being respectful is so important to me. it's hard when your cathartic release is also kind of a weird snakepit, but there it is.

i guess the thing with me is that i've always wanted to show the whole fucking picture, you know? not just the chosen photos or curated tweets. i want to be a three-dimensional person. i want you all to know that i fully exist, complete with multitudes. maybe it's foolhardy to give so much of myself away and keep so little for airs of ~mystery~, but i need to. i've been a writer my entire goddamn life, yet my story is the only one i own. i already have so few weapons left; i'm toothless if i don't have words.

at the end of the day, it came down to the big question, for me: what can i do - what kind of lasting mark can i make - if i don't write? i'm not exactly samuel pepys, but my story is the only one i've ever been able to tell. i'm not much, but i'm all i have.

"you don't need the attention and validation of others to figure out who you are," my mother said. but maybe, i'm not quite there yet; maybe, it's a matter of us all needing each other to help us figure ourselves out.

so let's get back to it.



[ music | the tea party, "babylon" ]