Ever get annoyed? Ever feel like someone needs to be told where the dog died? Or handed a crowbar and a tub of Elbow Grease to help them pry their head out of their arse? Congratulations--you've come to the right place.

And when I'm not commenting on the latest thing to piss me off, I'm trying to figure out my own twisted life. Because, hey, I'm like that.

On a gentler note: for anyone dealing with depression, anxiety, and other assorted bullshit: You are NOT alone.

And if you're looking for a laugh, search on the key word "fuckery." It's just my little thing (as the bishop said to the actress).

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Empress Abroad: Evening with Jim Jefferies, Part 3: Anatomy of a Celebricrush

Celebricrush: Strong, inexplicable attraction felt towards a famous person with whom one has no direct connection. [Yeah, a no-brainer of a definition, but WTF, had to be done.]

Theme songs for the evening:

"All These Things That I've Done" by The Killers
These changes ain't changin' me/the gold-hearted boy I used to be
When everything's lost, the battle is won
All these things that I've done...
Time, truth, heart...
If you can't hold on,
Hold on."

"She" by Green Day
She... she's figured out all her doubts were someone else's point of view.
Additional tracks for the soundtrack: "Absolute Beginners" (David Bowie), "Long Road to Ruin" (Foo Fighters), "Better Days" & "Red-headed Woman (Bruce Springsteen), "The Turning Away" & "Learning to Fly" (Pink Floyd); and a few others I'm forgetting

OK, so I've been yammering on about Jim Jefferies for a couple of weeks (well, actually for a couple of months), and the upside of it is that all of my friends who have had to listen to me have also got to see and hear Jim's material (clips via You Tube or the DVD "I Swear to God"--I won't let "Contraband" out of my hands), and everyone has had a damn good laugh.

Because he's fucking hysterical.

Now, I'm not going into an analysis of his performances--either the live show I saw the other night OR the recorded performances available. (Note for everyone paying attention: my birthday is ONE MONTH from today; "Alcoholocaust" will be released TWO DAYS AFTERWARDS in the U.K. And if I get multiple copies, I'll auction off the extra and donate the proceeds to kidney disease research [you know why]. If there is another extra copy, proceeds will go to the charity Jim gave the proceeds for his last Fringe show. Sorry, it's 3:45 a.m. and I'm not doing the research now.) You want performance analysis (ever notice that "anal" is the first part of "analysis." Note to self: research etymology of "analysis" and "anal." Got to be a reason), go read Part 1 of An Evening With Jim Jefferies on this blog.

This post is going to analyze the whole Celebricrush thing.

Now, I am 42. I know I don't act it; that's deliberate. I grew up a long, long time ago--it sucked, it was boring, and I said to fuck with being a grown-up. Grown-ups are assholes--fucking stupid jack-offs who are so self-involved and self-important that they don't remember the joy in life. Adults... *shrugs* being an adult is a slightly different story. I do consider myself an adult--I have a job that I go to on a regular basis that I actually love (well, for the most part, when people aren't pissing me off with their fucking ridiculous passive aggressive games. I mean, PLEASE! Don't you have something better to do with your life than make mine difficult? And seriously, what rational human being would be stupid enough to get into a pissing contest with me? Really. OK, I'll stop bitching), I have responsibilities that I attempt to take care of, I pay my bills as close to on time as possible, and I remember to feed the cat, fill the gas tank, and take my medication on time 9 days out of 10. I try to be compassionate, not break the laws I think are sensible, eat healthy, seldom drink these days, and do my best to be a good friend. I see my doctor, check my blood chemistry levels when I start feeling things go off, and do my best to help my mother in all her drama.

Because of the life I've led, I also go to therapy from time to time. And while it was not my fault that I was abused, it is my responsibility to heal and not take out my pain on others. I call it the Path of Compassion, the most important part of taking the Road Less Travelled. See, breaking the cycle of abuse is not enough. You also have to heal your soul and learn how to love and trust again.

This... this is not easy. There are days I think it is utterly, completely fucking impossible. I got back into the dating game about a year and a half ago. I actually started on a BBW-specific site; that was a fucking disaster. Not only did a schlub I'd dated a few years back try to get in touch with me (Gods, THAT is a story and a half! But for another time), the first member of the Strap-on Frustration Club (I was introduced to the term "pegging" today by a friend; never knew what it meant) was found on there, and it just wasn't working.

It's the self esteem thing. See, I dealt with the worst part of Fat Girl Syndrome a few years ago, long before surgery--the whole self esteem issue. I like myself. Actually, I really love myself. I'm pretty fucking cool, damn smart, incredibly talented, a decent human being, and a great lay most of the time. I don't want to be anyone else.

So I switched to Match.com. Argh. What a waste of fucking time--aside from all the scammers, Edwad showed up in a search. I freaked. FREAKED. Damn, I wish he'd die. Just a wasted of space on the planet; I wouldn't even wish that loser on Sarah Palin, but then, they'd probably get along famously and share their guns. *shudder* Christ, I'm skeeved at the thought. *gag*

There was another site in there; again, waste of time. Met a couple of guys, one of them nice, went nowhere. And then Plenty of Fish, whereon Phil was encountered, and it was decided that Your Empress was NOT ALLOWED NEAR BRITISH MEN EVER, EVER AGAIN.

*sigh* It's a pity. I love Brit Boys... the accent. The mischief... the fucking. Mmmmmm... so very good in bed. Never met a Brit Boy who didn't have a kink in his soul that translated into the bedroom. Deliciously translated... Yeah. OK, head out of the panties, and back in reality. The problem is that most of them are utterly fucking mental--it's really easy to forget when you're in the middle of incredible, amazing sex that you're from two VERY different cultures, with very different ways of communicating and ideas about what is acceptable. Argh.

But the sex... the sex was gooooooooood. So very, very gooooooooooooooood. If only it didn't leave such scars on the soul.

So, after Mr. Phil, I was pretty badly damaged. I mean, I had to confront a LOT of shit after that collapsed about me as a woman and as a person. And I had to really face my sexuality.

Now, as I've mentioned, I grew up Catholic. Had twelve years of Catholic school. Raised by a single mum who lived an exemplary life--she dated, but I never saw a strange man in my mother's bed. I think this is a good thing for a kid. Sex is an adult thing--kids don't need to know about it.

Mum had some pretty old fashioned ideas about sex, at least as she communicated them to me. I was told I was to remain a virgin until I was married. There was a problem with this, however: I had read Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Sex But Were Afraid to Ask at the age of 11--definitely an eye opener!--and had also read most of the letters in the Forum section of the Penthouse magazines under my grandfather's bed and the reader stories submitted to Hustler, which my uncle kept under his bed.

Yep, I'd had an education. And a half! I'd also discovered masturbation fairly early on (I think I was like four, or something), and never forgot how to make myself feel good.

Interest in boys happened at some point, and of course, it started with a crush on a celebrity.

Now, my Celebricrushes have never been mainstream. Never. See, back when I was 9 or 10, the big show was The Hardy Boys. Now, most of the girls went for blonde singer Shaun Cassidy. Not me. Nah, I wanted Parker Stevenson, the older brother, with his lovely blue eyes and greater intelligence.

Next was Dirk Benedict as Starbuck in the original Battlestar Galactica. I wrote my first ever fanfic at the tender age of 12. Yeah, I liked the bad boys even back then.

When I was 13, I began my lifelong habit of bucking trends. Instead of falling for whoever was the flavor of the month, some safely packaged Tiger Beat baby (I think Scott Baio was considered "hot" at that point; I will refrain from commenting), I fell head over heels in teenage lurrrve with Peter O'Toole.

Now, this was 1981. We had cable and The Movie Channel, and they were running an ad for a film called The Stunt Man. Just like Lord of the Rings changed my life, so did The Stunt Man. It's a film about a fugitive, Cameron, a Vietnam vet who stumbles on to a movie set whilst being pursued by the police, and must take the place of a dead stuntman so that the director, Eli Cross, can keep his location for the final three days of shooting.

If you have never seen this movie, RENT IT. Netflix it, buy it--Criterion released it on DVD. If you're in my neck of the woods, I will be happy to share my copy with you--Peter O'Toole is riveting, and I will never forgive the Academy for giving Robert DeNiro the Oscar that year. After seeing that film, I knew I had to be an actor and a director.

The next Celebricrush was David Bowie. I took a lot of shit for loving David Bowie--the famous cry, "BOWIE'S A FAG!" echoes in my ears still. Didn't matter--his music kept me alive during high school and was my portal to exploring stuff I would have never been open to without him. I've seen him live four times, and although Glass Spider was a bit lifeless, all of his shows have been amazing. If I ever get married again, "Absolute Beginners" will be the wedding song. "Labyrinth"... Gods, I want to adapt that for Broadway. It would be so amazing...

Anyway, I spent my teenage years sharing my affections between the two of them.

When I was married, I crushed on Mr. Spock. Not Leonard Nimoy--Mr. Spock. He was a unique creature in my experience--a logical male. (I did say I was married at the time.)

And then came Harvey Keitel. *sigh* Yeah, that one was intense. I applied to the Actor's Studio MFA directing program because of him. Got the news I'd been accepted on his birthday. It was nice.

I didn't go. By that time, my health was in the toilet, my psyche was severely damaged, and theatre... theatre was not an option at that point in my life.

And now... along comes Jim Jefferies.

So let's talk about Celebricrushes and why they happen. I mean, on the surface, they're creepy. (My opinion.) You have this attraction to someone you have never, ever met and probably never will. (Although I have met a few of my Celebricrushes, including Peter O'Toole and Harvey Keitel, albeit briefly.) It's one thing when you're a kid--it's safe to feel sexual attraction to an adult who is not a part of your daily life. When you're my age... well...

A bit weird.

Unless you're me. See, I find the ability to crush on someone (and I have a couple of "real life" crushes, lovely gents whom I deal with socially who just make my heart & other bits of my anatomy flutter) to be a really hopeful thing. After all the shit and bad things and bad relationships and stupid choices I've made, I can still have romantic daydreams, un-filthy desires, and yearning for a man.

I joke a lot about sex--honestly, I find it pretty damn funny--but then, I joke about most things that are important to me. It's my first line of defense. What we get up to in the pursuit and enjoyment of carnal pleasure... Yep, it's pretty damn funny. However, there is nothing more sacred to me than the sharing of my body, and I am luckier than most people in that I am really open-minded about sexual practices. I don't consider anything consensual to be "deviant." Sorry, but if you're both adults in your fairly right minds and you're both into it without coercion, GO FOR IT. I mean, who fucking cares what two consenting adults get up to behind closed doors? (Or three or four or however many. Life is too short--GET LAID!) The problem for me has come in when other people get involved.

Now, as you might have gathered, I live on the outside of my skin in a lot of ways. There are things I don't talk about--I leave out details that I consider a confidence in these posts because while there is stuff I don't care about people knowing because it just involves me, there's other stuff that to reveal it would be to tell someone else's story, violate their privacy. If you haven't broken faith with me, I can't break faith with you. It's not honorable. Back to living on the outside of my skin... the problem with being an open-hearted human being is that most people are not. Most folks live in fear, and the way they deal with fear is to deny, and in their denial, they instead judge others. Yep, it's hypocritical. Yep, it's the way the world works.

But it still hurts.

I've had a lot of hypocrites in my life. And they've done a fair bit of damage. As a result, for a lot of years, I'd do anything to prevent a man from knowing I liked him In That Way. PAINFULLY, HORRIBLY shy. And so utterly deep in self-hatred for my size. Now... now I'm old and cranky and don't give a manky fuck what you think of me. And I KNOW I'm a good lay. However... getting over that horrible, ugly voice inside... the one that whispers, "You're ugly. You're horrible. No one wants you." That's a challenge.

Self-hatred is something that's been a part of my life for a long, long time. It's taken me years to realize that it's not self-imposed--it's been put on me by others who couldn't accept me because I scare the living fuck out of them. People who hated me for being able to do what they were incapable of--loving myself, being myself.

My Celebricrushes have always happened at low points in my life--at times when I was ready to give up and pack it in. At critical nexus points. Jim happened in August after a looooooooooooooooooooong, hard, awful fucking summer when I was being consumed by rage, frustration--artistic, sexual and personal--and despair. There, on the giant screen television, was this guy saying shit... I mean, I've been writing stuff in that vein (not the same material, obviously--we're two very different people from different places)... I'm talking about the attitude, the honesty, the "I don't give a shit" attitude. How many of you have heard me say, "I'm old and cranky, and I don't give a fuck." It's my mantra, my philosophy of life, my shield against all the stupid fucking imbecilic hypocrites of the world. And here, on the TV, is this FUCKING ADORABLE, I mean, really goddamned cute! hysterically funny man saying pretty much the same thing.

I've mentioned that this was the summer of breakthroughs. Part of it came from dealing with Mum's illness: realizing how badly I'd been manipulated, how much of my life had been stolen, and how I'd allowed myself to be duped into because of my own desperate need to be loved and approved of. The non-body chemistry-related trigger for February's attempt to check out was delivered by Mum; she's been the catalyst for 85% of my bouts with the Death Need, the feeling of complete, utter inadequacy and rejection that only a parent can engender in a child. She and I have such a complex and intense relationship. I do love her; I also hate her. I accept that. Right now, I have to help her untangle her life so that she can go into elder housing and I can go on with my life.

I accepted that I may never find a partner and have a family. I still can't bear to think this; it still makes me want to curl into a ball and weep like a broken child. I truly do not know if there is a man on this planet who can love and accept me for who I am, as I am. I have a great deal to offer as a partner; I am also deeply flawed. I don't have many years of fertility left, although the surgery last year and continued weight loss and commitment to my health will give me a little more time. The bottom line is that I do not want to bring a child into this world just for the sake of having a child. I do not want any baby of mine to know the pain I have known; this is why I did not have a family when I had the chance when I was married. To bring a child into an abusive, alcoholic marriage would have been the basest, most vile of betrayals--a sin beyond all sins, a continuation of the ugly cycle of abuse I'd sworn to break. A child should have two loving, committed parents; I remember what it was like to watch my mother struggle. I do not want my little one to know that pain.

Because of who I am, I will make the most ethical decision, even if it means sacrificing my own desire. Because that is what it means to be a parent. I learned that from Mum; she tried so hard to live that.

The final breakthrough... theatre. Performing. I've been writing like a fiend this past year--with One Flew Out of the Broom Closet, I finally wrote the novel I've been dreaming of for years. And it's GOOD. Damn, it's good. I LOVE the voice of Rebecca Kinsale, I love her prickly, cranky, demanding bitchery. LOVE HER! Of course, she's just an extension of me, but still... to have a story that I've been trying to write for ten years FINALLY come together... Yeah. What's been missing, however, is the part of me I have been mourning for so very long: the actor.

The last show I did was Guards! Guards! back in '07; a mixed success, more success than failure, despite the fact it was staged in the Bookstore of the Damned & Clubhouse of Retarded Gamers. I know I still have "it" as a director; however, what I didn't have was the joy.

See, theatre... any art form, really... if there is no joy in the artist's soul for the act of creation, then there's no point. It's like perfunctory sex--you might feel good, but the orgasm is just a physical release. There's no satisfaction in it, and it leaves you feeling emptier than when you began.

That joy was stolen from me. I'm not going to go into the story--it's long, it's stupid, and the person who hurt me is a useless cunt who doesn't deserve the time or the credit. She's out of my life, she's a miserable creature, and I'm glad to be done with her. And it's NOT her life--it's mine. I'm responsible for it. Doesn't matter who does what, in the end, I am responsible for my own growth, my own healing, my own everything.

The one thing I don't like about myself is my need for approval--for applause, for adulation. The need to be loved. I may not give a flying fuck what people think about me, but that doesn't mean I don't need to be loved and wanted. And honestly, it's not something I ever really feel. I mean, I do on occasion--and far more now than I ever did in the past--but still... I do not see myself as a lovable person. I identify a lot with Granny Weatherwax in the Discworld books--the bicarbonate of history, the person you call when there's a hard decision to make, when you need something impossible done... but not the person you invite to a party.

Ow. That hurt to admit. But the truth is, that's the way my life has been. When things are bad, people want me around--I'm fearless and I'll deal with it. When things are good, well, let's just say people tend to forget I exist. Unless you've been in that position, you have no idea how painful it is. So, a long time ago, I started doing stuff on my own: going to movies, going out. Going to New York City to see Jim Jefferies. *shrugs*

I had to, though. There's a lot of common ground--again, different backgrounds, similar experiences, and a similar outcome, at least on stage. And it meant the world to see someone saying those things, getting angry, being honest, BEING FUNNY!!!!! and being applauded and successful for it. How could I not crush on him?

Besides, he really is fucking hot.

Seeing Jim perform--and the attraction I felt--set me to thinking. Because of course, being me, I have to analyze the shit out of everything. Why did I never go through with the one-woman show? The script was GREAT. Not perfect--needed tweaking, I mean, I only did the two drafts--but it was still damn good. And it's been sitting on my hard drive for nine years. Why HADN'T I done open mic? I'd been fantasizing about getting up and just doing it for years. Why the fuck wasn't I still doing theatre?

And it all started falling into place.

So... yeah. No more excuses. No more hiding. No more. Good-bye, Darth Thespia. Good-bye, OSP. Good-bye.

I'm back.

[So that's my rambling analysis of crushes. Short form: a reason for hope, as long as you see them for what they are: a bit of necessary self-revelation, a bit of inspiration, and a jump-start for a dead heart. Taken with a grain of salt and a good sense of humor, a damn healthy, normal thing to let you know you're still alive, still kicking, and everything's gonna be all right.]

G'night, my darlings. Thank you for reading. Be well--love each other. And don't be afraid.
Much love,
Your Empress

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