All is Calm… All is Bright…

But we really need some snow.

Seriously, it does not look like this in NYC and it needs to because it’s December people… and I am seeing way too much garbage and poo on 82nd Street.

Hello lovelies,

I know it’s been a long time. I’d like to say I have good excuses, but then… I’ve always said excuses pretty much blow, which is an excuse in and of itself now that I hear it out loud in my head ūüôā I have been all over the planet lately as a panhandler of words… hovering, warming my cold, chapped, Dickensian hands over the smoldering embers of other people’s much better ideas.

Here I am outside Berlin on the set of Grand Budapest Hotel for Project Vargr

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Sidebar: who knew a western European country like Deutschland could have so much schnitzel and so little product? The mind reels! The hair frizzes. Still learning how to smile for the camera…

And here I am in LaLaLand for Project G, wearing socks by the pool. Yes, that’s my pigment-free ankle. Liz Lemon’s got nothin on me.

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I can never stay in LA for long. I get a headache from rolling my eyes so much.

I started GG as an ongoing love letter to a city that has always made me feel at home… a tiny blog in praise of this place’s crazy ones, celebrating or leaning into¬†its¬†very difficult, nerdy, outspoken, prickly-pear, harrumphing people who make you realize why other cities pale and feel sort of JV (sorry other cities)… Not a political blog, not necessarily a neuro blog… except when warranted… and hoo boy… do I have some tales.

I was so blue after the election I almost defected to Sweden, but… I just cannot put that much sugar in my coffee. I like my coffee bitter… so, all is calm… all is bright… in the snowglobe that is my head and it’s time to get back to Gotham. Stay rad, my lovelies…

xoxo – gg

PS – the best thing I’ve watched this week… courtesy of Brainpickings.org… best blog ever:

 

 

F/M/K: Tr*mp, Darth Vader, Pizza Rat?

Words and images by the incomparable Warren Ellis and Tula Lotay

What do you think Gothamites?

Imma say:

F*ck Vader: He’s probably into some kinky shit that would make for solid, non-three-breasted alien¬†Sci-Fi material… a la Warren Ellis.

Marry Pizza Rat: We’re set to elect a fluorescent rodent. At least this little guy isn’t overly chatty and brings home something I like. (dollar slices)

Def K*ll: the cos-playing nuclear turnip who says HE ALONE speaks for you and that HE ALONE will save America. No way Jose!

I KNEW there was a reason I brought up Del Close and long form improv comedy the other day, and maybe this makes me a little (or a lot) evil, but you’ve got to ask yourself, can a bloated butternut squash improvise for four whole years? We may soon find out…

I know yesterday I was supposed to talk about Step Three: applying the lessons of Jason Bourne to address imminent danger, but right now… ¬†running over rooftops while mindfully channeling one’s heretofore undiscovered Krav Maga fighting techniques feels like waaaaay too much in the heat… I vote for binge-watching Stranger Things on Netflix and checking out Ruth Ware’s awesome new thriller The Woman in Cabin 10. Both are good fun.

For now, keep cool and stay rad.

XOXO – GG

Ps… No fluorescent rodents (or anything of that ilk) were harmed in the making of this blog post. It’s all just silliness… xoxo

The White Walkers Are Coming… Quick, What’s Our Safety Word Again?

“Rhubarb, golf, prostate, prostate…” (30Rock)

We’re about to hand the keys to the White House over to a cray-cray, uber-racist, homophobic, disability-hating Oompa-Loompa who has no intention of actually leading. It’s like a life-on-fire montage, and no amount of tweeting or blogging will fix it.

Re: the Melania moment. To give her the ultimate benefit of the doubt… a “worldview” is what you do when you’re alone in the room… when you think no one else is watching… Maybe Larry Wilmore is right…at least she espouses the same values as Michelle Obama??? Naah, they’re just a bunch of lazy, entitled f*ckwits. To quote Rory Albanese, “This is how hot girls get through high school,” which is wrong, wrong, wrong Rory… You doofus-ass crush of mine. And, you know what they say about the “entitled”… “They don’t get a break… They just get broken.” (Jon Westenberg)

But ugh… I put myself through college working as a baker… I know I said I was a dangerous girl, but after Day Wine and Tina, I think we might need¬†Step 2 to be about Del Close and long form¬†improvisation… ¬†see the brilliant:¬†https://www.amazon.com/Truth-Comedy-Improvisation-Charna-Halpern/dp/1566080037

And for hot-as-balls New Yorkers and thinkers everywhere, we need more of this guy from today’s Gothamist:

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Tomorrow: Step 3 – Time to Get Your Bourne on… ¬†For now, stay rad.

XOXO – GG

 

The Dangerous Girl’s Guide to Well… Danger

cartoon by the incomparable Allie Brosh

 Are you all holding very still?  Well, stop it right this instant!

Yes, it’s been a while… A two-month hiatus during which I undertook a death march of work with all the discipline of a randy squirrel.

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Now, nearly every corner of the planet seems to be on fire . A sociopathic Cheeto is taking over the country to a Queen soundtrack, and we seem to be collapsing in on ourselves like a big black hole of horrifying irony that would stump even Stephen Hawking. A small, dangerous world it is… ¬†replete ¬†with #FamousMelaniaTrumpQuotes…

Here in the city, where it’s hot as balls… I am happy to report that New York’s finest has finally nabbed a character known only as Poop Guy. Yes, this was a guy who recently terrorized New Yorkers (specifically those on the Upper East side) by running up to them on the street and shoving a bag of poo down their snazzy Outdoor Voices yoga pants and screaming, “You’re a shitty person!”

He was apprehended without incident… no gun violence to speak of… no choke holds necessary. A shrink at Bellevue described him as “F*cking deranged” (a clinical DSM-5 term, no doubt) and everything went back to being simply on fire–minus the scat.

Is this all we’re good for? Why do we continue to hold still and do nothing? I feel like this is exactly the type of thing Elie Wiesel (RIP our hero of bearing witness) would say, “No way, Jose!” to… Don’t you?

I have never been one to shy away from embarrassing myself in front of ridiculously accomplished people… from revealing my stockpile of sins, shortcomings, bad grammar and neuroses like a scantily clad magician’s assistant ¬†(breasts akin to Shar-Pei puppies). I propose we start spit balling… bigtime:

Step 1 – Day Wine and Difficult People

DifficultPeople

I’ll be back with more tomorrow. Dangerous times call for dangerously thoughtful measures. For now, let’s all try to use our own words and remember… “It’s not them. It’s you.”

XOXO РGG

First Prince, Now Hodor… What Next?

Hello Lovelies,

Is it just hot as balls out, or what? A perfect¬†day to binge watch by the AC while doing¬†Blogilates on the side (anything to avoid the dreaded¬†writer’s bum)

A bunch of you have written in to ask what I thought of Prince and then¬†Game of Thrones last week… what with Hodor saving the day in an epic, grand mal time seizure in which he is trapped in a¬†last-moment loop before his own horrible death.

I spend a lot of time these days thinking about how to transcend the niche of epilepsy. Either through humor,¬†the personal essay or any kind of narrative… ¬†and I can honestly say… I don’t know what I think. I cried with the rest of Gotham last Sunday night.

On the one hand, Hodor has been portrayed to us over the years as a giant broken simpleton–without high cognitive function. A person with no there, there. (And Bran has been a little turd to him all too often)

On the other, the joy of serialized TV is that with each episode, we, the viewers, are given the opportunity to constantly correct what we thought we knew and that’s super fun. Our curious human brains¬†love it.

Last Sunday, we corrected our knowledge of Hodor’s inner life in a¬†big way. For me, the real tragedy was that there was a there… there¬†all along.

I want to believe the boundary between being¬†able and disabled is becoming increasingly porous, but my concern is that without a horribly tragic demise… the respect, the tiny openings just aren’t there. I too chuckled at all the memes that followed GoT, but as an out spaz… I don’t want to be a doorstop… just because I’m still getting all my words back and am stuck in a bit of a time seizure, myself.

Hodor talk pretty some day?

Still noodling over it… Stay rad and cool. XOXO – GG

For more on the troubling ethics of Hodor… see this completely compelling piece in The Atlantic Monthly.

 

UnReal Estate… Or What to Do When Oscar Isaac Becomes Your Worst Nightmare!

Hello my  Lovelies!

I don’t know if it’s the weird weather out or the¬†fact that I am crazy-close to finishing Project Ur (thank you very much Warren Ellis for that spiffy term) or if it’s just the current¬†zeitgeist of the city… but I keep having THE WORST real estate dreams… No joke! In them, earnest hipsters with neatly trimmed triangle beards, and ominous cats keep chasing me all over the city… and NOT in a good way.

Last night, they chased me right out of my apartment to a Westin and then to an awful¬†Marriott¬†with nasty bedspreads (sorry Marriott brand).¬†The desk clerk there was also an Oscar-type, and HE kept telling me that I was actually booked at a boutique hotel called The Lucky (some ACE poseur in my dream) but I couldn’t ever seem to find it. It was like The Walking Dead, but instead, the Oscar Isaacs all had these credentials and liquid assets… And they were way better writers.

My BFF Ed (depicted here below¬†in dog form–whose dog is this, btw?) keeps telling me…

ed

I need to desensitize myself to the Game of Thrones that is New York real estate by listening to this podcast: There Goes the Neighborhood¬†and that it’s just like check-in at an Italian airport… anything goes! To this I say…

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Thanks for allowing the dream rant… and thanks to all of those who wrote in last week agreeing that we SHOULD INDEED have Neil DeGrasse Tyson as a write-in running mate! It makes so much sense, right??? But how do you get creative with housing in our/your fair city when Oscar Isaac starts to give chase with a cat in hand? Drop me a line ūüôā

Ok, back to Project UR… even though it’s cloudy out and there are buildings… make sure to wear sunscreen and be nice to each other. (I swear, you’ll thank me later.)

XOXO – GG

 

Welcome to Face Club…

Cartoon by the amazing Allie Brosh!

The first rule of Face Club is: you do not talk about Face Club.

To hell with that.

For those of you just joining us, it’s a little over a year since I shattered my face and jaw in a grand mal seizure. Worse still, I severed all the facial nerves that fan out like a daisy across the right side of my¬†forehead, cheeks,¬†lips and chin. This has meant no feeling or movement for things like speaking, eating, drinking, smiling¬†and blinking. It took 11 months to be able to blink again on my own . Lately, I am relearning how to whistle… so that I might be able to kiss again. Right now, I can only smooch people like Auntie Mame… MWAAAAHHH! Beware, I practice all the time. I had no any idea how many muscles it takes to close one’s lips together, even just for a second! It’s like doing a prison push-up with my mouth!

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Much of the time, getting better seems to stretch out to infinity. Progress has been so fucking imperceptible… like clouds on a windless day. Grrrr… But the city has been a marvelous place to recover in that it affords so much anonymity. Hooray for strangers’ willful ignorance. Such a blessing in disguise!

Today, however, I woke up to a freakin’ miracle… I can finally raise my right eyebrow!

WOOHOO! YES, I can give people the side eye. I can fully AL GORE just about anyone I want… on command! It’s the best. To celebrate, I’m going to AL GORE people everywhere, all day! I might even sigh audibly when I do it just so they notice!

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XOXO Р GG

PS – my skull a year ago!

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2016: On the Orgasmic Lure of ‘The Reset’

Day 29 (or so) from Jack London-Land and it’s safe to say things are getting a tad Grey Gardens up here. Hoo boy…

I’ll be frank … 2015¬†really blew.¬†(yes, hello 2016… I love you already. Mwaahhh!!)

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I know everyone’s hatin’ on Gwynie these days, but the image was just so apt.

In¬†giving this past year the sidelong glance it deserves… almost every bad thing that could happen… did¬†happen… just like¬†that scene in The Revenant. After reaching the high point of my professional life… I slid down the corporate ladder faster than a stripper down a greased pole. I’ll spare you the litany of bad breaks and missteps, but¬†life was quickly turning into an Aimee Mann song … you know that one from Magnolia… I LOVE¬†Aimee… she is my serious girl crush, but I do not want her as my life’s theme music anymore… Sorry Aimee. (You’re still hot)

3 days before Christmas I had a mini seizure… not a full rolling-on-the-ground grand mal… more like a petit.¬†I was writing when it happened… finishing a true crime freelance gig¬†that was just sooooooooo mind-like-a-dial-tone. Here’s exact moment when it happened… see how my typing goes all crazy?

seized.pngit was like swallowing a bolt of lightning and then… staring out across a great black chasm of solid darkness… at¬†what I have always imagined a¬†parsec to be… (a¬†parsec is equal to about 3.26 light-years or 19 trillion miles). Casting around for a mooring in the BIG deep dark, it seemed I was the big deep dark. Pure absence.

I don’t know how I managed it, but I texted a panicked “help”…¬†because I am out in the wilderness here. Quick-thinking friends sent some¬†lovely locals¬†to¬†check on me… They reminded me of hipster¬†versions of Mr and Mrs. Santa Claus… jolly and sweet… Good Samaritans unafraid of a¬†spaz¬†in distress. “We’ve seen the dog have seizures!” they told me.

And then, I slept and slept… like the deadest of the dead… with flashes of hip Mrs. Claus checking on me.

When I finally awoke, this time was different… But how to describe it without sounding like a damn¬†sissy… My friend Camille says¬†that after I have a seizure… I always look like I’ve just had sex. That’s kind of how this was… it was a¬†true form of being awake… not in any airy-fairy-Zen-way (sorry Buddhists)… but a concrete… flint-cracking awake with this singular¬†spark of joy, like that amazing feeling you have right after a big, ginormous sneeze, or on that first, luxurious morning inhale of coffee… ¬†I have not had this feeling in so long… since the big, bad accident–last year.¬†I’ve heard it called “the beginners mind.” And it was as if suddenly… I might actually get my life back… like George Bailey in a It’s a Wonderful Life¬†realizing he’s not a goner… he may be a total loon, but he’s really, super-duper alive.

And it came with a kind of creative euphoria… a constant, vivd flow of ideas, words, images, undertones and moods all rushing at me like a gorgeous river¬†of stars in my mind’s eye. It was like a completely amazing software upgrade. Something I never want to let go of… like my children or my city.

While we’ve all been¬†bemoaning the oh-so-tiresome Resolution these past weeks… I have been reminded of something a very dear friend once taught me (and keeps teaching me again and again). She is a doctor, but not just any doctor… she is one who specializes in the absolute, from-the-ground-up-things-are-decimated-rebuild of a person… she is meticulous, an artist, at times she is pure, crazy-making OCD,¬†but¬†she has schooled me in¬†the ways and means¬†of the reset… the profound, methodical comfort of putting things back, the satisfaction of knowing exactly where things go, of knowing precisely¬†what instruments and¬†materials are needed next, and having them perfectly at hand… that the very act and aftermath of the reset can be just the thing… just the rush… one needs… especially for 2016. For this lesson and my little seizure, I’m grateful.

I wish this feeling for all of us this year. Especially Gotham.

XOXO –¬†gg

 

How Love Should Be…

Snarky little secrets, whispered behind musty, inky pages that transport you both. New York is a good city for this kind of love.¬†Makes me want to live here always… (crap res photo… I know… sorrs)

Need to live here

Before the frosted jaws of winter clamp down on us all … I had to look around the city today…¬†When you know you’re losing something you love for a good long while (or maybe forever) you just want to memorize every line, every leaf, every perfect imperfection…

Whether in¬†the park…

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or on¬†the subway… before it’s all covered in snow…

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Here’s to a winter hiding together, naked, behind good words… xoxo – gg

P.S. I have been reading Fate and Furies… Lauren Groff’s prose is like a fast sailing craft¬†whose heavy keel slices razor-like through the water of your mind’s eye… you see every frame…