laurie kendrick

A Toothache Can Be An Allegory

The second presidential debate is now history.   I refused to watch it, because had I done so, my death would have been imminent.   You see, I have no patience and intense short-fuse rage issues these days.  The culprit is an abscessed “wisdom” tooth which has to be treated with antibiotics before the wretched thing  can be pulled.  Proximity to the brain, dontcha know.

Pain above the neck is acknowledged through a short,  very direct route to the brain.    Below the neck, it all has to go through the spinal chord.   Make no mistake, if I stepped on a nail. I’d feel it immediately, but feeling the intensity can be slightly muted by distance, mere inches in some scenarios.   As my layperson’s mind perceives it, it could be compared to booking a non stop flight versus one with a lengthy layover in Denver.   There’s always a layover in Denver.

I finally got tired of burping up insane amounts of oral pain gels and faced my fears and  went to my dentist, an occupation that has scared me since seeing The Marathon Man as a kid.    The  kindly dentist took X-rays which revealed I had  a rather odd wisdom tooth that was quite infected.     He knew it was painful.   I confirmed that it was.  I was quietly praying for a script of Fentanyl; he suggested Naproxen.

I have to wait three more days for it to be pulled.     I’ve had a migraine, an earache, a sore throat and as mentioned, rage issues for the past week and a half.   Chronic pain, which I’ve lived with daily since a car accident on 1991, can wear on your heart and soul.   I was precribed an antibiotic which began working, but I only felt its defense forces for the first time this afternoon.  It was only then that I had an appetite, could chew and be civil.   It was the first time in a long time, I didn’t want to yell at those  pesky kids to get off my lawn, even though I have no lawn and I live in a gated community.  I’m the youngest homeowner here and I’m still south of 60.    I can remember “Let’s Make A Deal” while my mostly senior  neighbors can barely recall Roosevelt’s New Deal.

Age schism.   And many of my neighbors are of the nosey, gossipy variety, who hate my dog’s entire elimination system.    I responsible in that I pick up where he leaves off, but I’ve  been written up in the past and for another pet owner’s lack of duty regarding dog doodie.

Pets are barely tolerated, but I’m afraid children aren’t allowed here.  Of course,  no where is that mentioned anywhere in the contract with the builder or in  the HOA by-laws because well, it’s completely Illegal, but here, I get the sense it’s unspoken.  If there are any local kids missing,  authorities might want to check out some of my neighbors.   I walked by one house recently and got a strong whif of gingerbread.

I’ll move soon, and rebuild  and do as the late John Denver once warbled, come home to a place I’ve never been before.  Like an old Etch-A-Sketch from my childhood, I’ll erase a good part of my past.    Well, maybe not erase,  but I’ll make the bad stuff of memories far less retrievable.

Here’s a tip for you:  when God…the Universe….Putin tells you over and over again,  your life and everything in it isn’t working, acknowledge it don’t ignore as I did, cut your losses and run, don’t walk to the nearest exit.    Don’t sit there hoping things will change as you maintain the same currupted mindset that only served a purpose when climbing the ladder, not while stowing it away.   Minding these no so subtle cues often means leaving what’s familiar, but not necessarily healthy.    Taking it further, it also means excising certain people from your past, not because they’re bad, but because one or both of you have changed to the point nothing in the relationship is salvageable.   These are people I once knew from my childhood, a million years ago, from cities large and small,  a million miles away.    Depending on perception, we were victims and/or the fortunate ones to be where we were, when we were.    But nothing lasts, nothing is static.    Many people remain loyal to things which they have every right to do, but these are things I can no longer believe in, creating  a schism of a different kind.

I’ve recently spoken with some people in the psychiatric world about the changes I feel within and around me.   I wanted to know if this need to separate who I am with who and what I was is normal, given all my circumstances.   They each replied in their own ways, assuring me that shedding is perfectly normal and natural.   Dogs do, it; as evidenced by the fur on everything in my house, cats do it and people do it.  We shed dead skin cells to make way for newer, healthier ones.  The White Coats say what really matters is what’s really about the intention behind the mental aspects  of shedding.    Makes sense, so I’ve thought about, lost sleep over it, allowed guilt to eat at my being and arrived at this point.   It’s time to remove  things, leave things, and think differently about things because for me, it was and continues to be in in my best interests to move forward and stop looking back.    I had to remove myself from the things that hurt; which had become painful; which to due to impulse, neediness and bad choices, I allowed to become painful.

Not unlike my abscessed wisdom tooth.

An Untitled Ode

If I were asked to name a new rock band, I’d call it Ava’s Gardner.

I thought about that while waiting in line at the Walgreen’s in my hamlet.   I know it would only be effectively funny to ‘people of a certain age’, still,  I found it funny.

Then, I pulled up to the clerk behind the bullet proof glass and the metal drawer that when fed various forms of negotiable currency,  magically dispenses all kinds of drugs that are supposed to help combat issues associated with ‘people of a certain age’.    If only the drug dealers of my wanton youth were as attentive accommodating and NOT under DEA surveillance.   My bedside table looks like a crime scene photo from  Marilyn Monroe’s bedroom.    Like hers, my bedside table is littered  with amber hued plastic pharmaceutical bottles.  Unlike Marilyn’s collection of Big Pharma,  none of the fun stuff.   Aging it seems, is a condition that must be treated medically.

In 1973,  when I transitioned from an  8th grader to a high school Freshman, I discovered FM rock stations.   What a concept.   No AM static or hiss or loss of signal when you drove under an overpass.   Even standard songs that ran amuck on AM station playlists sounded better on FM.    I remember one of the first songs I heard on this amazing new format–’twas aural splendor.  It was an Elton John tune that was a few years old and rarely played then, much less now.  It was entitled Friends, from the French movie of the same name, about two young teen lovers (a term I loathe).  The beginning of the second verse is as follows:

“It seems to be crime that we should age….”

Turn 14 and all that that implies, and listen to those lyrics and try NOT to experience new-found teenage angst and existential doubt.

Back then I swear I felt like Atlas with a better rack.

Funny how amplified a pimple, a break up, an unrequited crush, a mid-term exam, the prom, being popular or not, can be everything at one point in life.  How small the world is in the life a young teen in a free society circa 1973

In those years, all I wanted to do was experience what my new masters, the surges of estrogen, were commanding me to do.   But mother didn’t like it.   To her, I’d become  a problem vhild.    I proclaimed  her “pubic” enemy #1.   I matured faster than my two older sisters who were more demure and feared her.   I didn’t.  The fact that I would  argue and debate points  WHY should be allowed to attend a senior party, were lost on her.  She didn’t see it as burgeoning negotiation skills.  It was me being a sassy.  A smarty pants.      It’s as if she viewed my larger boobs as dousing rods that would lead to bad behavior.   She was very strict based on reasons she couldn explain.   I was actually very normal for my age, but she was intent on coloring me abnormormal, compared to the two daughters she’d previously raised.   I was constantly threatened with being sent to a convent school and forced to see priests and shrinks because she couldn’t understand me.

It wasn’t long before I realized our mother/ daughter dynamic was textbook skewed.    She knew it too.  The truth is, she was hardly the mother that a girl like me should have had and I wasn’t  the daughter that  a woman like her should have had.    We’re were misplaced in each other’s lives.  We were a living conundrum–very alike while also being polar opposites.

She was short in stature and even shorter now, and even though I surpassed her in height decades ago, she has always nine feet tall,  completely imposing in her very counteneance.   I saw that as a challenge.     I’d get grounded, but felt it worth it if I got a good lines in as my two week sentence was being handed down.

It took a number of years before I understood her as a woman with issues of her own.

She turned 86 in June.   She is slow and doddering, her memory will lapse, she searches for words and can stand someplace with vacant eyes, her mouth agape until what ever synapse starts firing normally again.   She’s now at that point where if she can’t remember it, it didn’t happen.    “Damn liar!”,  I’ve decided, is a term of endearment.

It’s taken years to understand how unkind onset of senility can be.   

She has good days.   She has bad days.  She has aches and pains.   She’s deaf and refuses to wear her hearing aid.   She’s often grumpy.   Her front and back bumpers of her car are mosaics of colors from things she’s  bumped into.    The familial discussions about additional care and imposing new restrictions such getting behind the wheel, are becoming more frequent.     It’ll will enrage her to learn she can longer drive. But we would do it for her own good….she’ll compare to a stint in Abu Graib?

It was fear choice to move into a lovely semi independent home earlier this year, though  she doesn’t socialize with her fellow residents.   She talks more openly about her death, a topic I hate, but I know it’s my duty as her daughter my is to remain quiet and absorb everything she says as opposed to denying her the priveledge.   After growing up in The Depression, after watching friends and brothers  leave to fight in World War II or Korea and never return home; after all she’s witnessed, such as  the advent of TV, astronaut Neil Armstrong take one giant leap for  mankind…and after giving birth to two compliant  daughters and one ABC After School Special (aka me), she’s earned that right to talk about her life and the end of it.

It’s taken a few years to appreciate aging along side my mother.

It’s odd that we’ve finally reached something akin to a canvass  of common ground that’s painted as gray as our hair and on a landscape of  mirroring wrinklles.

My two sisters see her once a month.  Her decline is more obvious to them.  But I notice it too.   Often, from day to day.

But despite that, life goes on thankfully and I’m renewed in some way that we still argue, we still have distinctly different views on almost everything but we have a better understanding of each other which remains unacknowledged.    And that’s okay.   We’ve never been demonstrative in word or deed.  She told me she loved me by giving me coupons for products I liked or  highlighting newspaper articles about weight loss, a knee with encroaching arthritis or how  to find THEE man of my dreams.    I’m emotionally awkward too, though I can say I love you easier than she can.  She’ll say it in return if told first, but she never initiates it.

And that’s okay, too.

I understand so much more than I did at eight or 18 or 38 or 58, which if you must know, staring me down in a matter of months.

The reality is my time with her grows short.   Someday, sooner rather than later,  the phone will ring and life as I’ve known it, will cease.  One day, I know I’ll miss being told no with a hand slap,  or that what I’m wearing, watching, reading,  driving, drinking and thinking is all wrong for me.   I’ll miss hearing  my hairstyle is 20 years too young for me and there no more be questions about the  eye liner I’ve applied being a Maybellibe producer,  or something from the Slut Line of cosmetics.    She’s old, but still biting.

I’ll even miss being called a Communist spinster with a bad attitude;  the constant criticism that comes with wearing bra that’s completely ill-fitting for a woman with what she calls, some “heft”.

Someday, she’ll be gone.

And it will take years for me to get over it.









The Fascinating CBK

Many incredible world events happened during my 30-year career as a newscanchor/reporter.   The Berln Wall came down and capitalism came tumbling in.    O. J. Simpson’s murder trial,  the lengthy Korsech stand off in Waco, Hurricane Katrina, Tienneman Square, The Gulf war  of course, September 11th and all the world changing procedures and processes that became commonplace afterwards..

I might have covered them by proxy, from safety of a studio a thousand miles away, but when you report on a story long enough, you come to know the characters.    Even the terrain where the stories happen.

I felt that way about John Kennedy, JR’s.plane crash.    From an age perspective, I fall between John and his sister , Caroline.     I grew up with them, basically.    I have vague memories of the frolicking in the Oval Office.    But their mother’s desperate need for privacy kept them out of the limelight for most of their our childhood.  I saw even less of them after Jackie married Onassis.   Years went by and I don’t remember hearing or seeing a thing about either sibling, then all of a sudden, John John as he was called as a child,had grown up into a very handsome man.   And his photos were everywhere.

In 1994, I was assigned to cover the Houston Rockets NBA finals match up with the New Year Knicks, not covering the game per se, but doing whacky slice of life, fish out of water stories in the big .  But I went to Madison Square Garden for one of the playoff games and with my media access badge, I could go almost anywhere.  So, I was standing near the corner of the court and sitting mere feet from me in his courtside  side, is John By God Kennedy..   He had on a awhiye button down shirt, sleeves rolled up and he was drinking a beer from a plastic cup.    Like an Everyman, but trust me, he wasn’t.   He was probably one of the best looking men I’d ever seen.   Like a Shiele portrait.      Security told me to step back which I did, and that ended my 13 second relationship with John John.Fast forward five years.

I was sad to learn John’s  plane had crashed and it was apparent to everybody even though it was never mentioned on the air, that all three passengers were dead.   John, Carolyn and her sister, Lauren were flying to Martha’s Vinyard for the wedding of John’s cousin’s  Rory Kennedy, a documentary producer with whom Ethel was pregnant when her husband, presidential candidate Robert Kennedy assassinated.   But the Kennedy family know a lot about death.     JFK was killed in Dallas, two family members  killed in plane crashes in the 1940’s.   Teddy had then deadly crash at Chappiquidic.     He didn’t die, but his passenger died.     Several Kennedy cousins (the third generation) died  various reasons, from illness, a drug overdose and playing football while skiing and catching a 30 yard catch while slamming into a tree.    The Kennedy family has to have grieving down to a science.

I remember doing a few stories on John’s marriage to Carolyn Bessette.    Overall, I wasn’t overly impressed.  We all know the stories about the lusty Kennedy men and as far as that goes,  she was typical Kennedy female fare, blond haired and blue eyes.   I really didn’t think that much of her.    I mean, she was attractive—-it’s not as if John John would marry a dog.    She was petty, from a well to do family and of course, she was as mandatory, a Catholic.    Other than that, it was just another Kennedy wedding.

But it wasn’t until I watched a documentary on the 15th anniversary of the plane crash that I actually noticed Carolyn…almost as if for the first time.

That lead to me becoming a voracious reader about all things CBK.      You rarely hear or see anything about the couple anymore, but I’ve kept her memory very much alive this past year.

If she were alive, I’d love to have a beer with her at some hole in the wall.   I don’t know how I know this , but I firmly belive that underneath the wealthy private  school girl demeanor, the designer clothes, the tony NYC address, the upper crust balls, the cotillions,  high dollar fund raisers, the forced  magazine smiles that never seemed all that easy for her to make.   I just somehow know She was a fairly regular girl who probably didn’t brush her teeth every night and wore unwashed jeans from time to time and farted and burped and laughed at the even the dirtiest jokes.

So, in getting to know Carolyn, first by photos, I thought she  was prettier as a younger woman.  She did some modeling early on and she wore well what was left of her baby fat.

Then she got a job doing PR for Calvin Klein and as the story goes, John came in for a his bespoke suit fitting.    They met and fell in love and maybe a year later, they had a small, secret marriage on an island off the coast of Georgia.

They went to Turkey on their honeymoon and upon their return, John escorted Carolyn out of their TriBeCa apartment, dressed in a sleek brown pencil skirt and black boots, in front of hordes of photographers and camera people, and he begged them to give her her space.  The new Mrs. Kennedy was new to all this media hullabaloo.  Did they oblige?     Oh, hell no.

She was photographed doing everything, everywhere from attending galas to picking up dog doodoo after walking their dog, Friday.   And you could tell it bothered her.   The gorgeous clothes, the pretty long blond hair, piercing blue eyes and long, coltish legs couldn’t hide the “I’m so annoyed look!”.     She was hounded.    Hunted.    Stalked.  And absolutely miserable I would imagine.   And not only that, her father in law, a much loved president assassinat s in such a public…..her  other in law a style and fashion icon.    It was almost a blessing they both died before her relationship with John began, but their ghosts still haunted her.  The media made sure of that.  I can’t imagine how difficult it would have been had she been forced to be a perfect show pony in front of her in laws, much less the surviving Kennedy clan..   Carolyn was pretty snd probably poised and mindful and tactful, but a show pony?    Nope.

I suppose that’s why I began to appreciate her.   John had inherited a lot of money from his mother and from the Kennedy side.      As his wife, Carolyn had had all that money, too….all that access to excess, yet she didn’t seem like a snob.    Her friends and coworkers would tell great stories about her kindness and humanity…..sometimes demonstrating all of these virtues even while wearing a $5000 vintage Valentino gown and uh, that’s in 1998 prices.

Her Patrician profile kind of tells it all.      See the above photo for proof.   It was a perfectly linear as if honed by hand. She would have been an artists’s dream.  Definitely not Dora Marr.

Then, there were rumors flying around that the marriage was in trouble.  She had affairs,  he had affairs.    She and her fashionista  friends were doing a lot of cocaine, a habit which John apparently abhorred.    He wanted kids,  she didn’t.   They were separating one minute, divorcing a week later, recommitting their vows the next day.  It seemed to be a circus inside a carnival ( and one of those thirty traveling kinds) within a circus.    Chaos  and tumult at every turn.    For John, it was no big deal.   He was raised with cameras thrust in his face.    But did he fully understand how absolutely foreign this life was to Carolyn?    Was he frustrated at her inability to cope?

As the years progressed, I can remember seeing Carolyn looking very pale and thin.  Her face had gotten very angular, hollow.  She was pale.   People Magazine published candid shots of the couple walking along New York streets, she looked perfect….even in jeans and little make up , but it was the fact that she and John were holding hands or her arm tucked around his, that almost seemed staged.   They  didn’t look happy and again, keep in mind, that’s Just a very unprofessional opinion.

That said, I’ve probably seen every photo and every video short of the private things the i f family have and would never release to the world.     I’m ordinarily not an obsessive person, but when I find someone who interests me for whatever reason, I’ll read everything I can about them, study every photo and video and these days, one can enter someone’s paycheck by readings every twitter entry, Instagram story, Facebook and Vimeo video.     Narcissism and smart phone filters make this kind of sleuthing so much easier.    You see all their entries and can tell so much about that person.

But I digress.

Carolyn seemed unemotional in most post marriage photos.       I never met her,mint know hervheart or soul, so , anything I say is a presumption, but I doubt she would have taken constant selfies, posed with an archaic book and some foreign coffee drink posting it somewhere and calling it her daily breakfast routine.    She had every reason to be pretentious, but I don’t get the feeling she was.      Perhaps as emotionally skewed as she might have been, she seemed to be the real deal.  Not a poseur.

And with Carolyn, I began to realize it wasn’t that she was  just married to JFK, Jr.,  I was more curious about Carolyn’s life under the microscope of being in this man’s life, which also means being in his big dynastic family.    Her fish bowl existence, all tthe  articles about her good hair days, weight loss rumors, there was this bombardment of her self esteem that she might not have been strong enough to fend off.     Reading all things truly credible and all things completely incredible, I surmised that life for,Carolyn despit all the Kennedy perks, couldn’t have been easy.   I got  the sense that Carolyn became very tightly wound after getting married.      Life had become a prison and freedom, or what little she had, always had to came at a price.   Not unlike Princess  Diana,but then again, doesn’t one have an idea of what one is getting into when marrying royalty, be it British  or even an American version?

If all the authors of all the  books and articles are to be believed, there were abortions, affairs, public arguing, depression, and a separation right before the plane crash.

Like I said, obsession isn’t in my lexicon, not in the classic sense.   I studied Carolyn Bessette Kennedy not to immulate  her—-hell, she was almost six feet tall, I’m practically that in width.   But I know what her favorite parfum was, what her favorite Bobbi Brown eye shadow was and that she liked Bud Light and had large feet, but knowing these things only sated my curiosity.     The sullen eyes told me a whole other story.  I’m not obsessed with CBK, I still feel sorry for her and her life, cut too short.

When she married John John, she married the handsome man AND the media, the gossip mongerung and a very wealthy and mythic family that doesn’t like nonconformists to their ways and means. I feel as though there exists a secret Kennedy Code.    It is a flawed family and almost  as Scotch Guarded as the Clintons.

Where’s the happiness in bei?

What  did that chunky little Italian host of that show all about the seedier, tragic side of  Hollywood say at the end of each show on E!??

“Fame–ain’t it a bitch.”

Carolyn, I’m somsorry that tag line became your reality.












































AHS: Season Five, Episode One & Two


At the beginning of every season of American Horror Story, I pray to St. Cecile of B. de Mille that each episode will make sense and offer logical and proportioned story telling.   And for the previous four seasons, I’ve been sorely disappointed.   The show never fails to fail me, but like my inability to watch a young Hollywood starlet spiral out of viral control. I can’t help but watch the descent.     I’ll watch season numero five if for nothing else, to keep a running tally of every production rule broken before the first commercial break.

The Hotel Cortez is lavishly decorated; Art Decor splendor with a cast of characters that are all delightfully broken souls.     Failures, addicts, fringe types— Denis O’Hare portrays bellhop/bartender with a fetish for Liz Taylor (the caftan years).

Th production is equally lush with Kubrickian camera glides down hallways and use of special fish eye lenses on cameras the elevate in height—the kind that makes TV fangoria even more…well, goriia.

Sex, drugs  sex, ambitious career dreams doused with lighter fluid, sex, homosexuality, murder, mayhem, rape eith pointy conical spheres, gratuitous ass shots, sex, vampires, a ghost or two, kidnapping, ornate dildos and violence all displayed before you imagelike a horror buffet.  Kathy Bates plays Iris, the stern, never smiling hotel manager.   She fights with residents and guests and she works at the hotel to keep tabs on her wayward son who happens to be an addict, a boy toy and a vampire.   Fortunately, son Donovan didn’t seem to inherit his mother’s vision.  Those glasses???    She can kill dreams AND ants from 60 feet away.

I must confess–my first look at her prompted me to think of the result of a genetic commingling of Brett  Sommers (the  Mrs. Jack Klugman) of Match Game game fame and of the late Hollywood super agent And Odcars after party host extraordinaire, Mr Swifty Lazar.image

Sarah Paulsen returns for her fifth consecutive season. She plays Hypodermic Sally, a drug addict with a hairstyle that looks a lot like the unconditioned bob I sported back


in ’84.  She “lives” at the hotel and has a tempestuous relationship of some kind with Iris.   Apparently, they’ve loathed each other for the past 20 years.    Nancy is a drug addict that lured her teenage son Donovan into the Hotel Cortez for a vein full of China White. He must have been an at risk kid, because Iris had been spying on them from her car.   Iris bribes Liz Taylor, looking lovely in fuchsia, and he tells her the room the two junkies are in.   Iris goes upstairs, enters the room; the son is out cold, Nancy is loaded but coherent.    The two women exchange words.   Nancy flounces out of the room, into one of the hotel’s six hundred looming hallways, then finds an open window.   Iris pushes her out, she falls several floors, we assume to her death.

This event happened in a flashback from 1994,     Two commercials later, Nancy is back In the present day, looking haggard and all Nancy Spungeon-esque, but still part of the story line, we assume, as a ghost.  Fast forward to present day and iris and Nancy are still at the hotel, mainly because Nancy might be a ghost.

There’s a police detective, a Jon something or other, who plays his part a lot like Kyle MacLochlan portrayed FBI Agent Dale Cooper in Twin Peaks.    He’s investigating s number of murders that involve rape with conical-shaped metal dildo strap-ons.    He’s crank called by the murderer who lures him to a house, which I swear is the iconic Frank Lloyd Wright Hollywood home of the doctor who’s been linked to the vicious murder of the Black Dahlia in the Forties.    He find  two men brutally murdered and in suspended cages.     But just after that, we learn i the flash back contained in a flash forward that his son had been kidnapped from a carousel on an amusement park on the beach.   This happens when he turns his back for one minute.   And as familial trauma is want to do, this creates a problem with his pediatrician wife( Chloe Zevigny)

Lady Gaga stars as the countess and own of the hotel.   Her acting consists of some dialogue, but mostly crafted profile shots and pouts I perfect keylighting, but she’s a singer first.    She’s a vampire, apparently over s hundred years old and she needs the blood of children to keep,her looking good in a meat suit.   But fear not, not one member of the four basic food groups was harmed in the costuming of her character.   She wears rather fabulous closes, incredible gowns with trains, Bedazzled elbow length gloves with their own special scalpel sharp nail on the index finger.   She has four Hitler youth looking children, who stay in a special game room behind s secret door….that is when they’re not stealing a scene from The Shining, appearing at the end of the hall, then sprinting  off Hussein Bolt down one of the hotels 347 hallways.

Behind this secret door, the kids sit quietly while attached to machines that collect or purify blood (or both) while playing an ancient version of Mine Sweep.   After only two episodes, we’ve learned that one of the kids is the cop’s kidnapped son.   I guess they feed on the blood of addict murder victims (and those are a dime a dozen in this hotel), th blood is then removed of additives and Gaga and Donovan (Iris’ son).

But the CoUntess  wants to sell the hotel to an ascot wearing clothing designer from the East Coast. He’s flamboyant yet has a son with enough of an Asian gene pool to make him looked like a perfectally coiffed Sanjaya from American Idol, 2007.

This is the best pic of young Lachlan Drake I could find.

image image

There’s a heaviness to this season; more so than Asylum (Season 3).    It’s darker, more morose.   The hotel s clean as a whistle, dark in the places it should be.   Just enough ambient lighting to create shadows. I get the sense that love is a culprit this season—-and so is vanity.   People have killed maniacally for both.  And in a hotel where police tape is considered devor, we’re talking about victims, ripe for the picking.    And they pay for their sins in painfully gory ways.

More familiar actors from years past will return over the next several weeks.

Oh yeah, I almost  forgot—Hume Cronyn is back.   Well, Hume C. The actual,noted actor jettisoned this mortal coil several  years ago, but the same actor who played the crazed reanimated Montgomery baby that often lived in the basement of Murder House I. AHS’s first season one of many ghosts of ha returned as some sort of creature that spears in walls and can often be found in s crudely stitched mattress.

See what I mean?

image image

The first episode of Season 5 left  me yawning.    The second episode was better, or rather good enough for to commit to watching a third episode.    One motivation for doing so, is seeing Finn Whitrock.  He played th the murdeereous inbred psychopathic Dandy last year.    in Season 5, he’s a bad boy model really into snorting “Columbian  Marching Powder”. He walks out in the middle of a fashion show and falls under The Countess’ spell.   One romp in the  sack and he too is a vampire, but not only that, he’s replaced Donovan as her boy toy.

Here a scene of the pair in a post coital make up application session.


And here’s Gaga in one of her basic housdresses. Lovely.   Now, I don’t know if this crock proves shoulder pads are coming back…………OR…………

She oddly wears Maxi Pads on her shoulders.

Either way, I hope the look comes back.   I’ll be back for episode tres.

The Political Cause Celeb For Kim Davis

The Kentucky County Clerk who was arrested for refusing to issue a same-sex marriage license due to her religious convictions,  is home.    She spent six days in an uncomfortable, cramped jell call, perhaps with Brawny Big Sal in the other bunk.     Wow.   Kim Davis is made of strong stuff.

But Kim Davis is also in violation of the law.  I say that feeling certain she shouldn’t have gone to jail for it either

Same sex marriages are on books.    The Supreme Court says marriage is an equal opportunity for all.      As someone elected to her post, she swore she to uphold the laws of the land, not her creed.   This isn’t s theocracy.

What it is, is her job as an instrument of the U.S. Constitution.  She has to put her religious paradigms on hold.    I don’t care if she’s a cloistered nun who’s a rabbi on the side with a son who’s a mullah.

If the possibility of Sharia law governing this country is appalling, overt Christianity should be a concern as well as.  The same applies to any other religious or societal factions, whether they be in the form of Kim Davis or for that matter, Morey Sclechtman, Mohammed Alabaster or recently engaged Misters James and Brad So-In-So.    There are some things you can decide for yourself…and some things you can’t.

Davis can be a conscientious objector, but to do so (in my opinion) means she must be willing to reach a compromise of some sort.  Well, the reason why Davis is out of jail is because she asked for and was granted an accommodation—-she’s not requesting same-sex marriages be outlawed, she simply doesn’t want her signature on any legal documentation.  It’s against what she personally believes, but that belief is an obstruction.

It didn’t need to get to this point.   It was completely unavoidable and its exhausting to watch.  It’s been a situation of extremes.   The judge who put Davis in the Bastille over-corrected.    The punishment didn’t fit the crime.   Plus, her past has been brought up and dragged through the mud.  She been married over and over, divorced amost  as any times.  As best I can tell, Davis Is a fairly recent convert to Christianity, Born Again as they say.     Some find solace and centeredness at the gym, in therapy, others find it in religio, all viable entrees to finding inner peace.    Groovy.     She, like everyone else, she deserves a life edit, a do over.   She has that— for now—but no doubt, someone will enter the picture and either politicize the shit out of it even further or shame and guilt society into seeing his or her version of moral righteousness.

But the long and short of it is as follows:  she didn’t have to go to jail, neither did she have to turn this into a statement which now has been polarized.    She should have respectfully disagreed  to sign the marriage certificate and if it possible, “deputize” a willing coworker for the brief time it takes add a signature to a document.    I don’t know how this got so crazy, who complained to who or what was the motivation.    I’m all for religious freedom, part of the constitutional bedrock of this country, but I don’t like martyrdom in any form or fashion.

This is why Non-politicians are being heralded this election season.    Everyone is tired of the rhetorical narrative spewed by the opposition.  I am this, I am that.   America needs this, it needs that.    PPfffffft.   Republican POTUS hopefuls, Mike Huckabee and Ted Cruz are both in Kentucky, Huckabee on on stage, arm in arm with Davis.   Cruz is somewhere in the crowd, taking selfies, to post if this mishegas becomes generally positive; or to delete just in case it all goes south.   Personally, I feel they’re making a vast political mistake by even contemplating a jump on this constitutional defiance bandwagon.  How can one legitimately run for a position which is  contingent upon upholding the  established laws of the parchment all the while saying it is bollocks to being with????

Then again, what the hell?   I personally don’t think either contender has or will ever have a realistic shot at winning the primary.   Maybe deep down they know this is true.   If Cruz or Huckabee are going down, they have a right to pick their blaze of glory, but invariably, these guys also have to know to they’ll burn someone  in the process.

Finding Joy

I’ve returned to blogging recently.   I love my need to write but I hate my need to be read.  So, in trying to shake off the conflict, I’m reading more.   It’s an attempt to expand my mind as opposed to narcissistically dwelling in it.

Step away from the table of contents.

Today, my reading material consisted of the Holocaust and the  upcoming 14th anniversary of 9/11 (hard to believe).    To lighten the mood, I got caught up on the Bolshevik Revolution.  And now here I sit, sleepless and questioning so many of the things I once knew as certainties.

Question du jour:  is joy a spiritual reward?

Or is access to it innate and then once realized, must it be practiced regularly?   Or is it results oriented?   Do we earn joy like old school S&H Green Stamps or bonus points for knowing the proper way to pronounce Ibiza in Catalan?? How closely is it related to faith?    Does an atheist experience the same kind of joy as a Levite Jew?    As a war-weary Syrian hell bent on seeing her homeland from an infrequent over the shoulder glance?       As a one one percenter in America?  As an ambidextrous Portuguese butcher who’s also a vegetarian AND a Scorpio????   Can a scholar sense joy as someone unschooled, lay people as opposed to a proverbial keeper to the flock???

i can’t help but feel that joy is as ironic as it is elusive.  For some people, anyway.  It’s a conscious effort that has to be based on life experience.   Can you exist in a death camp simply for being Jewish while still being as devout as you were before imprisonment?     Can Mass be celebrated on a battle field?

Life experience must play a part, right?   It has to be.   I don’t know what it’s like to drink Cristal on my own Lear jet, heading to exotic ports of call.   I don’t know what it’s like to be a teenager in Peshawar.    I don’t know how it feels to be an Israeli who must make daily trips to a bomb shelter, a Katrina surviver, a gay firefighter in Poughkeepsie, a male model, a Vietnam vet or a red-head for that matter.

I think joy is a conscious effort, that try as you might, can’t be a constant factor.  Perhaps one cam claim to experience joy most of the time, la the Duggarrs, formerly on TLC, currently on every tabloid in every check out aisle.   Can joy run on a continuous loop?


Joy, I reckon, must have an opposing force, you know, like a certain duality such as sweet and salty, hot and cold.  It must be an emotion of extremes.   Otherwise we wouldn’t be able to recognize it as what it is (joy) or what it isn’t (sorrow).   Okay, fine but Is there a middle ground?  Can you be content but not necessarily joyful per se?   Is love a product of joy or a necessary component needed to experience it?  Are love and joy one in the same?

Do I attempt to answer my own questions by asking them?    A question is safer than a declarative, is it not?

Wow.   You do not want to have an existential crisis on a balmy Saturday morning when Mopheus ignores you and you have 600 TV channels, 579 of which pay their bills with early hour infomercials on over priced hair care products or something called “a giant ladder system”.

I’d rather watch a test pattern.

Oh joy.

Dear Laurie

My darling younger self,

What I am doing is nothing new.  In fact, writing letters to your younger self is downright hackneyed.   Everyone does it.   I guess I could also try to write your epitaph while I’m at it!!!!   Okay, but that’s for later in our therapy.

First, we’ll address us when we were 20.     Nice time.    We are/were was young and thin.    Still living in Austin before the severe leftist intrusion the late 80’s.    College was fun, like high school with ash trays.   It was a raucous time to be alive.   Back then, no one tried so hard to be different.   Uniqueness just was– not a lifestyle pursuit.

Remember how we moved every time the rent went up?   It was a hassle to be a  full-time student working at a crappy job that introduced itself to you as a crappy job.     We knew it when we said “Yes to the stress”.    But you’ll do just fine.   You’ll learn to live within your means and you already know about talking at a higher octave to buy a cheaper Happy Meal without the guilt.

Never forget get those insidious roach infested apartments we lived in.   They were and for some time, will be, tiny and cramped.  Lean to’ with shingles.  But you’ll appreciate that you have a roof over your head and indoor plumbing. But never forget, the DNA of a hundred previous tenants will always be swirling on every surface.   Avoid the petri dish that will be your kitchens.   Look into healthy ways of employing anorexia in your life, if possible.   You won’t want to place food, much less eat it, anywhere near most of your kitchen counters.

For a time in your  early twenties to age 30 or so,, the only letters you’ll receive will be returned check notices from your bank.   You’ll learn to hate that distinctive shade of pink paper that shouts  “welcher…..loser” behind the envelope’s cellophane window.   But I beg you, don’t beat yourself up about this. Why?  Because you will survive the “student experience”.   You’ll make those particular sacrifices while still young in life.  You’ll live in neighborhoods that were shady because like your neighbors, you didn’t have a choice.    At least not in the fiscal sense.   And yes, the chasm between you and “the haves” will exist, especially while still in college, You’ll look enviously at those rich, indulged sorority types who were on parents-ships, totally subsidized by mummy and daddy.  You used to think their only goal for four years was to pledge the right sorority, date the right guy from the proper Texas zip code and study, in between winters in Cabo and spring breaks in Gstaad.   But I want you to let go of any resentment ASAP.   It’s reductive and besides, everyone has a veneer, a lovely candy coating…..and consequently, everyone has a price to pay for everything.   The Big Mental Get Even comes later, I promise.    You’ll be amazed how once you’re in the real world, the playing field will be leveled.     Not completely, but more so than it was during your college days.  You’ll grow up, mature and see the error in your thinking.

Oh and while I’m at it, don’t date any jocks at while at The University of  Texas.   It won’t end well.

For him, as it turns out.

You’ll have a kickass career, especially at the very beginning and while the money isn’t flooding in, your star is rising and you will be heralded in ways you only imagined at age six.     On air, you are loved unconditionally and disliked with as much passion.   Learn to edit criticism from viewers and listeners and for God’s sake, run like hell from broadcast consultants.     All they know is resentment from an on-air career that went to hell or worse, never went anywhere.   They’re Satan’s spawn on a salad plate filled with nettles.     General Managers are generally full of hot air too, their hands still aching from all the knives they plunged into other people’s backs.    They will eventually stumble and fall as well.   You’ll learn that failure and disappointment are viable and unavoidable  facts of life.    Embrace them.  They are lessons indeed, but not necessarily pass/fail courses.    You can choose your mode of testing.

In order to do that, I urge you to avoid pilots, ignore the tall, handsome Canadian.   Stay clear of the lure of fame even if regional, even if it’s on lowest rung on the show biz latter.  Try to abstain from all the stuff that feels good and either sounds like, or actually includes the letter “x” anywhere its title.   Imbibe less.  Learn that Love is more, much more than a few commonalities,    A mutual love of chicken coop welding will bring  you together, but it’s not enough to keep you together.   Love is complicated, regardless of how easy it can feel.   Use common sense, don’t be a doormat.   Reinforce your spine.

Please let go of that precious little lion cub by 1975.    Trust me, your life will be easier.    Adolescent first loves are too often idealized and never a reason to seek a vacuum cleaner hose before shutting the garage door.  It just feels like the end of the world.   It isn’t.  There’s power in release.

Learn that donuts aren’t sweet bagels, don’t date co-workers.   Madonna will always be thinner than you AND might I add, always a year older.    Calibrate the mania in your life, keep stress on low and battle the inertia, where possible.  And please know this—it’s perfectly fine to be vulnerable, just not to the point of exploitation.

So, be kinder to yourself than I was.    I’m sorry for some of the decisions I made….not so much what I did, but who I did.   Had I been wiser, the tone of this letter would be far less cautionary.  But in spite of all the warnings, there will be good times in your life and yes, you will know joy, but understand that (unless you did an unscripted  180 and became a cloistered nun), it’s not a constant.    It should be, but it can’t be, no matter what bill of goods you or someone else is trying to sell you.   .    You’re an errant human and you’ll know joy’s varying degrees throughout your life.    Revel in its presence.     Use time wisely, it never seems to stop until it has passed.   Oy.   Enjoy your memories but stay focused on  your dreams and goals.      And uh….being the first female broadcaster in space, isn’t one of them.

Marriage and motherhood can be In the picture should you choose to form a civil union or procreate….providing the ovaries can produce anything but powdered eggs.    That’ll be an issue.   But  you’ll welcome menopause and be okay with aging, as long as you don’t attach anything numerical to the process.  Stay away from fun house mirrors and laugh, loudly and often.  Walk tall, learn to accept and respect your gifts. You have more than you allowed yourself to realize.  Avoid complex carbohydrates and refuse the urge to celebrate your birthday during Fiesta in San Antonio, 1991. The trip there will literally wreck your life.

Lastly and perhaps the most important thing Older Me can impart to Younger Me would be this:  your mother wasn’t Kreskin.   She was wrong about a lot of things.



You at 56.