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Greetings From Weird New Jersey

Ten days into the new year, and life is already an interesting adventure.  There's a month worth of crap sitting in my head that I may or may not empty out into this space.  Not going to lie...December was a rough time for me, despite the fact that for a moment I had a really awesome room in Fishtown and one of the best room mates ever.  Avoided the Internet, mostly due to the fact I couldn't face everyone posting about their holidays and happiness and what not.  Spent most of my time self-medicating and formulating a game plan for the new year.  Part of me was disappointed that only four people out of the 500+ 'friends' on FB cared enough to make sure I was alright.  Guess it's better to have a few really good friends than a whole bunch who would barely notice if I did decide to disappear. 

In any event, things went sour with the living situation, which I can partly blame on myself, and now I'm on "vacation" in the homeland.  Just 20 some days shy of celebrating five years of survival in the Hostile City.  The last thing I expected was to wind up in Jersey, even tho my Dad has been suggesting I come back for quite some time.  So fine, here I am and now what?  If I didn't have someone taking care of me at the moment, I would just be wandering around.  To be perfectly honest, that was definitely a legitimate option, and I wondered if anyone would even take notice had I decided to be a hobo.  All those 'friends' on FB have no clue how close I came to actually doing this.  Since my stuff is safely stored in a basement over the boarder, the only reason I had to stick around was waiting for mail to arrive at the old house.  Once I had that in hand, I was going to pay my phone bill and hop a train or something.

However, I'm sitting in an apartment in South Jersey instead, making use of the Internet to do what I do best.   So far I already have a couple of shows lined up and working on more.  There's also a good chance I will have an opportunity to do a guest appearance at a major event, and I would love to secure that.  Not too bad considering I just got back on-line a few days ago.

There's a lot more I want to say, including the recent change of relationship status, which no one on FB has noticed yet.  Then again, I don't really need to broadcast it every where.  As he said, as long as we both know what's up, why does everyone else have to be in our business?  For the moment, I am content knowing I have made him the happiest man in the world.  Which is something I don't think I've ever heard from the lamers I dated in the past.  It's also nice knowing I never have to worry about being taken care of, and that this is most definitely a long-lasting relationship, despite the fact it has just begun.  Part of me is nervous, b/c I definitely don't want to fuck this up in any way, considering I have done that too many times in the past.

Even tho I knew it would only be a matter of time before love came along again, it feels like I am resisting for fear of hurting him and the friendship we had before making things "official".  He assures me that I have nothing to worry about, and I really need to take that to heart.

Have a list of things to do, so I should get on that and will be back with a more detailed update at some point.

Sick, Dirty and Mean

For the past month or so, I have been rocking out to the metal mix I made on iTunes, which isn't really much of a mix but contains some pretty awesome bands.  EyeHateGod has become a favorite, with their lyrics appearing as status updates on FB, captions under newly uploaded photos and now the title of this entry.  The other day I even embarked on the epic noise project that will interweave all of their droning and squealing guitars with a healthy dose of samples from Syzlack and Leftover Crack.  It has been a while since I sat down and fiddled around with stuff like this, so it will be interesting to see how things go.

Been out of bed for an hour and just now waking up, if that makes sense.  It was hard to sleep and I was plagued by dreams of the ex all morning.  Still unsure of which kind is worse - the ones where there is tension and I tell him all the things that made him a shitty friend, or the ones where we are friendly and in my subconscious mind, I actually miss the person I thought he was.  His presence in my dreams is unwelcome, and while I don't make a habit of even thinking about him, it happens.  Between this and randomly seeing him around the Hostile City twice in the course of a week has my head all mixed up.  Could use a serious mental cleansing right about now.

In any event, rewinding back to last Tuesday nite and my dinner date with Drew.  He actually picked me up at my place and then we were off to find sushi in Center City.  After playing a rousing round of Find-A-Parking-Spot, we entered Mizu.  It's one of those sushi joints I have passed by every now and then but never went in, b/c I'm too poor to afford their delicious seafood.  It was fairly late in the evening, so there were only a couple other people occupying the tables.  Not that I would have minded if there were more, but it's nice to have a quiet meal every now and then.  We sat at the actual sushi bar and perused the menu.  Decided on eel [b/c I love it so much], sweet potato tempura and spider crab.  It's awesome to watch your food be prepared and know that it's made from fresh ingredients.  Conversation flowed between savoring each piece of sushi.  As someone who doesn't eat 'real food' very often, I always appreciate the opportunity to have tasty foods grace my palate.  Suffice to say I could have eaten all the pieces myself, but was well satisfied with what I had.

Walked back to his car and then drove to Old City for an after dinner drink.  Wound up at Tattooed Mom, which was also pretty quiet.  Had a PBR and did more talking.  Was highly amused by the girls a few tables over who were taking pictures of each other and lollipops.  Silly hipsters.  Eventually we departed, got in his car again and he returned me to the house.  We were going to have a smoke, but it got late and he had to get up for work the next day.  However, I did get a nice little 'gift' that was immediately put to good use.

No 'love connection' here, but I did enjoy myself and hope there are other friendly outings with him in the future.  He also has access to a certain fun guy that I have been wanting to get my hands on for quite some time now.  Just have to work up the courage to inquire, as I don't want to be forward or cross the boundaries of our friendship. 

The next day I had another 'date', and yes I am using that word very loosely, as I do not considering hanging out with guys actual dating.  As much as I might sound like a complete asshole for saying this, it is what it is and I make no apology for it.  If a guy wants to pay for my dinner and drinks, I am not inclined to argue.  In no way do I ask for this, nor do I give the impression that these things will grant access to physical encounters.  In the end, no matter what, I am Carny and I do not turn down free things.  Of course I always make sure to be gracious and thankful, and sincerely so.  Just wanted to make that clear, b/c I know how it might seem to an outside observer.

In any event, Wednesday afternoon was quite lovely, so I enjoyed my walk down to Girard.  On my way towards the El, I see someone standing in front of a building with a plastic purple box hanging from a string out of a window.  The person walks away and I watch the box get pulled up to the window right as a cop car cruises by.  Oh Fishtown, you never cease to provide me with the most random things.  Met up with my new friend under the El, tho I wound up walking right past him.  *haha*  Someone should have said hi or made some recognition, but it was funny more than anything.  We get on the train and ride to City Hall, and no sooner do we ascend the steps then some guy is busking loose cigarettes.  Yea, welcome to the Hostile City - there's a giant close pin that's art, there's City Hall, and that guy has loosies.

Walked over to Rittenhouse Square Park and wandered thru it, then walked down to South Street and all the way down to the pedestrian bridge to check out the random things people have written.  My mark is long gone, and that's actually a good thing seeing as how it was a foolish one.  Hunger struck us both, so it was off to Lorenzo's for a slice and cherry Coke.  Sat down at the benches that I like b/c they have their own little grove of trees, where once can watch the traffic and people pass by.  Filled our bellies and talked for a while and observed all the action.

Eventually we got back on the El and returned to my 'hood, then walked down to Penn Treaty Park where I decided we must go on the swings.  The sun was starting to go down by then, and I very much enjoyed the view of the city with those beautiful colors in the sky.  Watched people play with their dogs, a few of which were interested in chasing squirrels.  This one guy started yelling at his dogs, and I had to laugh.  They're dogs and just wanted to play with the strange small furry creature.  Another guy comes along and picks up the squirrel by the tail, then proceeds to move it to a row of bushes, all the while the dogs are trying to follow him.  Not sure if the squirrel was alright, but suffice to say I was highly amused by the whole thing. 

There were some people doing a photo shoot on the bank of the river, which I also found humorous.  Apparently some people put a whole lot of effort into their FB photos.  *haha*  Walked around the park and then back to El, as it was getting late and he did not want to miss his bus.  We parted ways and I felt that things went pretty well.

Thursday I decided that it was time to get rid of the blond and become a Ravenette again.  It's always easier to match extensions to black hair anyway, which I happen to have quite a lot of.  Walked up to Sally's and was going to buy Wella when I remembered how good their own brand is.  Since the red worked nicely, I figured I would give the black a try.  Besides, it covers grey without fading, smells nice and is very gentle on the scalp.  Commenced dying the mohawk upon my return, and wound up having to scrape the bowl towards the end.  Despite the fact that I used half the tube of color, apparently my hair is still as stupidly thick as ever and takes more dye than I thought.  It was alright at the time b/c I just needed to be able to blend the extensions.  Also, I love Ion b/c it doesn't stain, which is rare for a black dye.

After rinsing and washing, it was time for extensions.  It's been a while since I've done them, and the bottom part of the 'hawk is still kind of short, so it was hard to make the sections straight and I did the best I could.  Wound up with a mohawk mullet b/c I needed time to do my make-up and get dressed.  Did all that, collected my swords and walked down to the El.

It was actually kind of chilly, so I wore the long coat my Dad got for me last Winter.  It makes me feel all dignified and whatnot, plus it keeps my legs from being cold since I always wears skirts or dresses.  Arrived at Irish Pol, unsure if I was at the right place.  The gentleman standing there smoking a cigarette informed that indeed it was, and then I was officially introduced to DJ Sleazy E.  We chatted for a bit and then went upstairs.  Since there was baseball happening, everyone was glued to the television downstairs and there were only a few people up there.  No matter...I was welcomed by Jeff with a shot of whiskey and a cool Miller.

Socialized at the bar for a bit and then took up residence on a velvet couch.  Chilled with Miller and watched awesome zombie movies while engaging in random conversations.  Even tho I was warned that might have been as exciting as things got, I was happy to be out of the house.  Other people slowly filtered in, and somewhere around midnite the fun started to pick up.  Key was doing her sexy dance thing and drinks were flowing to loosen up inhibitions.  Witnessed the glory of the Skull Shot, which is indeed a shot of whiskey poured thru and drunk from a skull [no, not a real one]. 

Then I got up and did the sword swallowing, which went over well with the small crowd.  Other debaucherous fun included free spins on the wheel for the ladies to possibly win a sex toy, more Skull Shots and a pants off dance off contest for some vibrator that all the girls really wanted.  At one point there were four girls in mostly their undies laying on the stage and getting vodka poured into their face holes courtesy of Dirty Diamond and Key via the skull.  It was definitely amusing.  Met the girl that Kiki and I are going to be doing brain surgery on for Diabolique.  She was there with Helvis and we chatted for a bit.  She's super excited to be a part of the act, and I'm certainly looking forward to it myself.  As it happens, I wound up making an attempt to drink a shot of tequila out of her bellybutton with three dick straws.  Should have picked a different liquor b/c the tequila made me want to puke, and those dick straws were pretty useless.  Dirty Diamond jokes that only Dirty Wasted Thursday could make a sword swallower choke.

Over all it was a whole lot of fun, as well as watching other people get drunk and do silly things.  If that's not a party, I don't know what is.  Doing it again tomorrow, and I know I will enjoy myself whether or not there's a bunch of people.

Hung out for a while just shooting the shit and whatnot.  Met Jeff's awesome lady Sarah and hitched a ride home with them.  Who knows, this could only be the beginning of something awesome.  Strange things always seem to happen to me, and I'm sincerely hoping this one of those times where it works in my favor.

Friday was a fairly low key day, considering I had been out and about most of the week.  Stayed in to get high and watch horror movies.

Saturday was sort of the same, since I wanted to conserve what little money I had for emergency food purposes.  However, when a friend mentioned that Hard Skin was playing the Barbary, I figured I could cough up a few bucks to soak in some good Oi! and do something with the evening.

Interrupting here for some shameless photo posting.

The lovely purple and various brown [with a hint of orange] extensions that I had prior to dying my hair black.

The extensions that I just removed.

Yea, my photography skills are lacking and it's hard to see the black and blue extensions I had in the mohawk, but I do like the way the front came out, particularly with that little peek-a-boo orange spot.  As irritating as the extensions can be [which I attribute to the bonding glue], I always miss them as as soon as I take them out.  Rocking out the 'hawk for Halloween as I need to give the scalp a good rest, but I have to say that I've become quite talented when it comes to creating a fake fringe.

In any event, the second photo was my look for Saturday evening, tho I wound up wearing a grey sweater as opposed to the hoodie.  The rest of the outfit was awesome and included the vintage slip Kiki gave to me [which was worn over a black dress so you couldn't see thru it] along with white and black fishnets.  Have decided this is going to be my 'costume' for the weekend, but will get to that in a moment.

Walked down to Girard and could no longer ignore the groaning stomach, so made a quick stop for a couple of burgers and fries.  It was the cheapest thing I could find in close proximity to the Barbary so paid no heed the unhealthy factor of the meal.  Found a bench outside someone's house and sat there to consume the 'food'.  Not the best thing, but it certainly hit the spot.

When I actually get to the Barbary and go inside, it becomes very obvious that there was no Oi! happening that evening.  It was some lame ass hipster douche disco party.  At least the PBR was only a dollar, so I had a few of those and then got the fuck out.  Not sure why the website I checked said Hard Skin was playing that nite, and later on discovered they were playing a different venue the following day.  *sigh*  As always, I managed to get out and have a few drinks, so it wasn't a total loss.

Sunday was that whole EyeHateGod noise project, which consisted of going thru all their songs and pulling samples.  Managed to compose the first thirty seconds and then could not stare at the computer any longer.  The rest of the evening was spent getting high on some finely crafted Carny Hash and watching cartoons on Fox and Adult Swim.

At some point I went to the supermarket b/c I am down to a couple boxes of pasta as means of food and figured I could get a few items to go along with it.  Bought frozen broccoli and cauliflower, mozzarella cheese, ranch dressing, bread crumbs and bacon bits.  So far I made the pasta and added the cheese, dressing, crumbs and bits.  Yea, it was trashy but oh so tasty.  The other nite I made the cauliflower and added the same things, which was also quite delicious.

Since it was unseasonably warm on Monday, I decided to head out for another round of putting up fliers.  Walked down Aramingo to Girard and hit up a few poles, then moved to the Piazza.  Apparently they are no fun and don't want fliers on their poles.  Got on the El and went down to 5th and walked to South Street to put up a few in that area.  During my walk, I pass by a flier advertising the ex's band, then commence laughing b/c the name was censored. 

Continued on into South Philly a bit and was down to two fliers.  Wanted to keep one to make more copies and decided the other should be put up at Tritone, so made my way there.  Rick and the rest of the gang were happy to see me as always.  Taped the flier up on the window and enjoyed a cool glass of cola while resting my weary legs and having some conversation.  Did not want to stay too long as I had intention of hitting up the Food Not Bombs dinner in order to see if I could volunteer and help them out or whatever.  There was also a weird feeling in the pit of my stomach that told me the ex would show up.  Perhaps that was due to seeing one of his friends who actually said hello to me as I was leaving.  Also could not shake the feeling that one of the homely-looking girls sitting there was his new girl.

The irony is, that while I was walking up 17th towards Rittenhouse, I actually saw the ex.  He was standing on the opposite corner on the other side of the street, and I don't even know why my gaze drifted in that direction.  Cue the momentary leaping of the heart, then focusing my attention on the light in front of me as it turned green.  There was no looking again as I crossed the street and tried not to think about the encounter.  My day had gone so well up to that point, as I was very much enjoying the lovely weather and taking in the sights of Old City since I don't wander around there frequently.

Wind up sitting by the huge water fountain that's in the proximity of the library and Art Museum, doing my best not to be blown out by what just happened, but the tears come anyway.  Texted Rachie for a bit to feel better, but my mind was racing with too many thoughts.  Somehow missed out on the FNB dinner, but I was in no mood to go back to the house, so I walked up to the Art Museum and sat at the top of the steps for a while, just gazing at the Hostile City's sky line.  Sort of was killing time while waiting to call DJ Sleazy E, who had expressed interest in purchasing Tattoo Collage III.  As much as I would have liked to made a lot of money from it, being broke and hungry will lead you take what you can get, so I decided to accept his offer.  Besides, he seems like a cool dude and I know he's going to enjoy the piece. We will be seeing each other tomorrow, so I get paid then.  Been trying to call over to Art Machine to let Tim know that someone is going to take the collage, but for some reason the number isn't working.  Tried texting him the other day but got no reply back, so I will be making a call here in a minute.

Suffice to say I was very tired when I got back, seeing as how I had been out for several hours, but it was all totally worth the effort.

Yesterday I had to do some shopping for make-up as I am almost out of white and need to rock the clown face Thursday thru Sunday.  So what if I don't have much of a costume; focusing on the make-up will certainly get the point across.  Decided that I am going to begin with the classic Anita Fixx face and decay over time, so that when I go out on Sunday, I will be a full on zombie clown.  Predicting people will get totally freaked out, more so by the fact that I'm a clown than a zombie.  Was disappointed that the make-up was not on sale, but at least I knew it would be quality.  Bought a black and white palette along with an undead stack, which should be more than enough to achieve the look I want.

On my way out of the store, someone calls my name.  Holy shit!  It's Royce, someone I used to live with when I resided in West Philly [and yea, kind of sort of had a wee bit of a crush on].  We chat for a minute and I learn that he lives in my 'hood.  It would have been nice to catch up a bit more and maybe even float him my digits [just for fun], but he said he didn't want to keep me and so we parted ways.

Removed the extensions when I came back and gave my scalp a good washing.  Have to dye a few spots tomorrow, but I am getting used to the black.

A few hours later I'm walking to Kiki's place, since we haven't hung out in a while and we needed to make plans for meeting up over the weekend.  Plus I had one of her food containers that I wanted to return so I didn't forget about it, and she needed a couple of blank CD's.  Made a stop at WaWa on the way b/c I was so fucking hungry. Got an apple, diced pineapple, a chocolate cookie bar, roasted red pepper hummus with pita rounds and a bag of Harvest Cheddar Sun Chips. Yes, I eat the most random things, but I am trying to make an effort to avoid unhealthy snacks or excessive amounts of sugar.  Wanted some strawberry milk as well, but I didn't have enough money so decided that having a glass of water when I got to Kiki's would have to suffice.

Commenced eating as soon as I sat down and was attacked by her kitten.  She finally got a spray bottle in an attempt to discourage such behavior. It will take some time, but it's always better to train a cat when they are young, as it does work.

Eating was interrupted by going outside to collect money for a gig I was supposed to do on the 29th.  Apparently the people that owned the venue decided they did not want to pay any of the performers, so the guy who had booked me quit.  He was nice enough to still pay me b/c the cancellation was so last minute.  Which I have to say is totally awesome, as some people would just be all, oh well SOL.  We chatted for a while, and eventually I had to cut it off b/c I wanted to finish my dinner and not be rude to Kiki.

Went back inside and filled my belly.  Made arrangements with Jen to meet up with her before I go visit Ntel and get some 'medication'.  It's only been a few days, but after spending a couple hours trying to get to sleep last nite and the dreams that followed, I could sure use the mental distraction.  Have to wait until the evening, but that's no big deal.

In any event, I'll be going with Kiki to her show on Saturday at KFN and don't have to pay b/c I'm awesome like that.  Walked with her to CVS so she could get a few things.  She bought me a pair of fuzzy black spiders in exchange for the CD's, which I am going to make into barrettes and wear with the whole clown zombie costume.  Using the self check-out was entertaining, as it kept saying she wasn't putting the right item in the bag.  Then she wants her five dollars as promised by the sign that said one would receive such by purchasing a certain amount of make-up.  She decides to pick up another Starbucks drink for the next day, and that becomes a whole ordeal.  This is due to the fact she brought in the same drink and was consuming it while we wandered the store.  When she was checking out, I stood there holding it.  Nonetheless, when she goes to stick the empty can into her bag of newly purchased items, the security guard thinks she took it from the store, drank it and was trying to buy another one.

Now I can understand this, except for the fact that I'm fairly certain the dude saw me holding the can while she was checking out.  If he had bothered to touch the can, he would have realized it was warm, where as the one she was purchasing was still cold b/c it had just come out of their refrigerated section.  He confiscated the nearly empty can and they had some words.  Meanwhile I had to go outside to keep from laughing in the dude's face.  Hopefully she goes back to completely embarrass him.

And with that, I returned home and watched a bit of television before getting in bed.

Currently my stomach is still angry and wants food, which it will get shortly.  Have to hit up Target for batteries so I can have photo evidence of my make-up and costume, not to mention any debauchery that takes place during my outings, as well as a a few other items.  Which will be nice to kill the time while I wait for Ntel to get in. 

Tomorrow is another episode of Dirty Wasted Thursday, where there will be three different costume contests, the prizes being sex toys.  Friday is Baphomet's Celebrity Birthday Bash Masquerade Party, which should be all sorts of entertaining.  Saturday is Sinner's Salvation featuring the Olde City Sideshow and members of the Hellcats Burlesque.  Sunday is the Halloween Double-Header at two different venues.  After that, I am probly going to spend a day in bed.  *haha*  This is the first Halloween in a while that I am not performing, so it's nice to be able to indulge in some debaucherous fun.

One final thing before I wrap up another epic entry.  Tim is featured in the newest issue of Rebel Ink Magazine, which is all sorts of awesome.  Definitely going to be picking up a copy, as I could always use the rest of the 'zine for an art project. 


Off to promote DWT on FB, then hit up the store and continue with the rest of the day's adventures.

Spirit Day

Originally posted by neo_prodigy at Spirit Day

It’s been decided. On October 20th, 2010, we will wear purple in honor of the 6 gay boys who committed suicide in recent weeks/months due to homophobic abuse in their homes at at their schools. Purple represents Spirit on the LGBTQ flag and that’s exactly what we’d like all of you to have with you: spirit. Please know that times will get better and that you will meet people who will love you and respect you for who you are, no matter your sexuality. Please wear purple on October 20th. Tell your friends, family, co-workers, neighbors and schools.

RIP Tyler Clementi, Seth Walsh (top)
RIP Justin Aaberg, Raymond Chase (middle)
RIP Asher Brown and Billy Lucas. (bottom)

REBLOG to spread a message of love, unity and peace.

More Good Stuff

Tim just stopped by to take the tattoo collage over to his shop.  Definitely happy that I had a chance to photograph it while the weather was still nice.  He thought it was cool, and I am very confident someone will want to buy it.

Pretty stoked for the Art Machine Productions opening party in general, as I know Suzi and Tim have been working very hard on getting everything together.  Despite what people may think, owning/running your own tattoo shop is not all fun and games.  Life is always there to come along and throw some curve balls.  Plus, I feel it's harder to be on your own as an artist [no matter what your medium is], b/c you only have your own reputation to stand on.

In any event, since officially being recognized as having a Guinness Record, I have absolutely no shame in making it known any time I will be performing.  Which is something I should share with those who have me booked for future gigs.  Usually I am not one to brag, but this is pretty much the biggest thing that's ever happened in my career as a sword swallower, considering I have only been doing it for almost four years.  Maybe now I can get just a wee bit of recognition.  At least I am confident enough to speak about it without coming off the wrong way.

Had been looking forward to hanging out with Mark yesterday, but his schedule got busy and we wound up texting each other all day...again.  It started Saturday, after he sent me a couple messages on FB and said he wanted me to know that he is there for me.  We've been chattering away ever since, and it's kind of weird.  Don't think I have ever really texted anyone this much...ever.  Considering that he's an EMT, texting is obviously way easier.  It's an interesting way to get to know someone.

We did have an actual talking conversation the other day, and that was nice.  Other things we talked about are not meant for public eyes of any sort, so I'll just say that it was fairly flirty and totally unexpected.  However, I still have a smile on my face, and that means a whole lot to me right now.

Did my duty of promoting the AMP opening on my blog, as well as on FB, which included inviting pretty much everyone I know in Philly.  Several of which have already expressed interest in coming. 

Still have no job, no money and uncertain about where I am going to live after the next 20 days.  Far too thrilled to give a shit right now.  It's moments like this that make me proud to be who I am, and maybe at some point other people will begin to understand why I choose to live this way.

*Edited to add*

This week's edition of City Paper chose the opening of AMP to feature in their Agenda Picks.  Which means I have to pick up a copy at some point to enjoy seeing my name in print.

Good Things

After having talked to some friends over the past few days [and venting here], I am feeling much better.  While things are still uncertain, to know that you have a support system of good people that are willing to help you out really makes a difference.  In other situations, I was always by myself and had a tougher time dealing with emotions and whatnot.

Since I have time to wait for everything to work out, figured I would focus it into writing.  Of course having Issue 2 of Aesthetic Evolution to work on should be enough, but I am still collecting things for it.  Updating the blog is more consistent, and at some point I am going to allow others posting access so I don't always have to do it.

Decided to open up another blog to fill with assorted articles about my love and experiences with circus and sideshow.  Wanted to do this for a long time anyway, and for me, it is the alternative to doing a print 'zine.  Now I can share all the things that have been sitting around, and there will always be potential for new stuff.

Recently, I had a nice chat with Mr. Thomas Blackthorne on FB.  Was informed that the Guinness World Record I participated in was officially recognized.  Been waiting to hear about that since Barry and I swallowed the sword back in January '09.  While the claim has been on my profile since I put that cold steel down my throat, it really feels good to know that it's in the book, in a literal sense.  That's right, my name is in the record book and engraved into the sword.  Anyway, he said he would send me pictures, and I still have to find out if there is something I can put on my profile or whatever to validate the record.

Speaking of sword swallowing, looking forward to performing at the grand opening of Tim's shop this weekend.  Have to work out details and whatnot, but the two of them are super busy [which is totally understandable] so just need to be patient.

Have a couple of other gigs lined up for the future and some that are pending, so that makes me happy.  Plus, I learned that one of the photos S. Jenx took is going to be a flyer for Reflections, and I'm not even sure what to say about that.  My name is also up on the site, and I'm sure at some point there will be other info, so that's cool too.  Really excited to be a part of the project, and kind of think it's funny my face is going to be all over the place.

Finally, over the past couple of days, I've been 'kept company' so to speak by texting with Mark Liberty.  It's weird b/c we've had mainly an on-line friendship since around the time I first moved to Philly.  We hung out once on his b-day, and I swallowed the cane sword for him. *heh*  It was also funny that someone got annoyed b/c my phone is blowing up.  Hey, I have a friend who cares, deal.  Whatever keeps me smiling right now is very much appreciated.

Need to get myself to the library and do stuff.  It's also really nice outside, as in the hot, sticky feeling is totally lacking, so it would be a shame not to get some fresh air.

Jonathan Aaron Ivylee Lovelace

This was something I wanted to post a couple of weeks ago, but to be honest, it has been hard for me to find the right words. Not so much b/c I do not have them, but more so due to the fact that I do not know what to say. For the past three years, right before Memorial Day Weekend kicks off the unofficial beginning of Summer, while others are gearing up for warm weather and that first trip to the Jersey Shore, my mind goes into a tailspin. Having stage experience comes in handy when you need to put on that plastic smile so that others have no idea how much you are really hurting inside.

The details of how Jon and I first met are secondary to the six years that we were really close friends. His life began in the carnival, and he certainly had a natural talent for being a hustler. When we hung out in NYC, there were many times he would show me what he could do, and I was completely awestruck. He had the ability to say the right words and distract people while skilled hands lifted wallets, watches, jewelry and other assorted items, without ever being caught. This allowed us to dine in the finest establishments, and acquire as much alcohol or narcotics as we wanted.

It became very clear to me at some point that Jon was a junkie, but for whatever reason this never bothered me. After all, every time we were together, he took care of me and made sure I was fed or had some pocket money in case I needed anything. He never lied to me, stole from me or otherwise tried to fuck me over, so the extensive drug use was just a part of who he was. In all honesty, our friendship meant more to him than anything in the world, so he definitely wanted to clean up his act.

Jon's greatest addiction was also a dangerous one. He constantly craved that natural rush of adrenaline that can only come from doing something that could possible risk one's life. Being a Carny, he could perform quite a few of the more common sideshow acts such as the Human Blockhead or Bed of Nails. He is the only person I knew at the time who willingly wanted to be a Geek. For those who are unfamiliar with the act, he would tear the heads off live chickens. Most found it to be quite disturbing, but I am not ashamed to admit that I was utterly fascinated.

However, it was the thrill of speed that gave him a high that no drug ever could. Jon loved to drag race in his 1972 Chevy Nova and easily earned a reputation for being a champion. It was not enough, and it led him to build a Wall of Death in a private location set deep in the Pine Barrens of South Jersey, where audience members had to receive a personal invite in order to witness this amazing feat. On rare occasions he would have a minor crash, which in turn earned him the title of Death Defying Daredevil.

On a beautiful Autumn evening [October '04], a large crowd had gathered beneath the big top of towering pine trees and eagerly awaited Jon's midnite run on the Wall of Death. There was a dense roar that filled the atmosphere when Jon appeared with his custom motorcycle, a huge grin plastered on his face as he greeted the crowd. During his performance, the unexpected happened. It might have been a loose board or nail that knocked him off balance, or perhaps the vast amount of coke he snorted beforehand. All I remember is watching him fly head first over the handlebars of his bike, which was traveling at a speed of about 90MPH. His body crashed so hard that some people cried out and had to look away. Each second that passed as a medic rushed to his side felt like an eternity.

The scene was fairly grim, and for a moment, we all thought Jon was dead. Technically speaking, his heart did stop for about three minutes. He was born with a congenital heart defect, and I am fairly certain that the drugs did not help. This was also not the first time he 'died', but that did not make me feel any better as I peered down at his crumpled body. While Jon was able to get up and walk away from this accident, it left him with permanent injury and caused him to retire from performing.

He was never the same after the incident, and there would be several months that we did not see each other. My life was going in a different direction, so we drifted apart and it effected him in ways I would not know until we reconnected again. March 10, 2006 was the last time I saw Jon alive. It is a moment that I will never forget, as he finally put into words the feelings he had for me the entire time we were friends. Even though I sort of knew this all along, it was still a lot for me to take in, and we still went our separate ways.

Two months later, I get the news that Jon was dead. There are many unanswered questions that I have, mainly why someone hated him so much they decided to take his life. It was no secret that some people were not so receptive to our brand of entertainment, and they were not afraid to do whatever it took to prevent us from earning a living. There had been a devastating fire that claimed several members of the Outlaw Cirkus in 2004, but it did not stop us from being ourselves and making an attempt to wake people up.

The day I had to say good-bye to the ashes of my friend was rough to say the least. It was also the last time I would walk on the Jersey Shore.

Last year I said pretty much everything I ever wanted to about Jon and the way he effected my life. There are still a number of stories about our adventures together that remain untold, and maybe some day I will put them in a book or blog or something.

The whole point in sharing any of this information, aside from the fact that I feel this is the best way I can continue honoring his memory, is that I find myself to be a Carny who does not fit in with the rest of society. Those that I once called my Family are gone. Those I once admired and respected have shown their true faces. Those that lived the lifestyle did so until their final breath.

If Jon taught me anything, it is that one does not give up, no matter how difficult the obstacle in front of you may seem. However, I must confess that once again I feel empty without him. And honestly, I do not know if I will ever get over losing a friend, a partner and one of the greatest periods of my life where I got to be myself and was adored for it.



My neighborhood is so ghetto...

Even the squirrels are eating fried chicken.  Saw one of the critters sitting out back here recently when I went to toss something in the recycling bin.  At first it was "Awe, look at the cute squirrel".  Then I realized it was holding a piece of fried chicken that most likely had been taken from the garbage.

For some reason, it's been hard for me to make time for an update.  Not that I don't enjoy rambling about life, but I suppose that time is spent on other things.  Getting the tattoo collage finished by the deadline certainly kept me busy, and seeing it completed makes me stupidly happy.

Sneak preview of Tattoo Collage III

Getting a ride to Tim's shop on Monday, so I need to get outside soon and put a few layers of clear coat on this and it will be absolutely complete.  Very pleased with the way it came out, and have no doubt someone will want to snatch it up.  This one was more challenging than the first two, mainly b/c it had so many curved plains, not to mention the heavily detailed face.  Pretty much the only parts that have no collage is the bottom [which no one will ever see] and inside the nostrils.  Everything else has been pasted with tattoos cut out from magazines.

Looking at the calendar, I realize it's been a while since I updated, excluding the Fuck Face adventure and posting photos of my fetish clown evolution of course. 

There was an evening where I met Dirt at Tritone b/c it was too nice for me to want to stay inside.  Went the usual route of sipping down Kahlua on the rocks while chatting with various people.  Then we went for a little walk to find something to eat, which I can be a little picky about from time to time.  When an idea of a food I want pops in my head, I'm pretty much set on eating it.  Our destination was Maru Global, which has Japanese style street food at a decent price.  Having been there once before with Steph Brown, I knew what to expect and hoped Dirt would like it too.

He was kind of skeptical about the food but decided to try something out.  Takoyaki is what I like, which can only be described a fried balls of deliciousness.  Got the Philly Cheesesteak and BBQ with octopus, tho was not too thrilled with the latter selection.  Dirt had some sort of corn balls with salsa verde, which I liked more than my BBQ balls, so we traded.  *heh*  Balls.

Moving along quickly, had fun chilling with Miranda last Tuesday.  It really was nice to be able to sit down over some super affordable rum 'n' coke and catch up on life.  She has a husband now and is working at Wonderland, which is pretty cool.  Dished about the horrible time I had in Knoxville and how I wound up falling in love with my best friend.  Suffice to say we were both pretty happy with our relationships and current life status, which is way different than when we stopped talking.  Certainly look forward to hanging out with her again.  Oh, and also wanted to mention that Rum Bar was awesome.  When you go to a place to drink and they have a giant pirate statue that greets you as soon as you walk in the door, you know it's going to be classy.

Had fun talking shit before we parted.  It never ceases to amuse me that someone thinks I am jealously obsessed with their pathetic drama they call their life.  Mostly b/c it never occurred that I moved on more than once for very good reason.  She was the one who always came  back and wanted to be friends, so that speaks volumes to me.  Plus, watching someone flail from one 'career' choice to the next, all the while using boys as accessories and making friends for connections is always hilarious.  We had a good laugh over her 'modeling portfolio' the other day, and even Jenx said that she's a flash in the pan, so really there's nothing more to do than laugh and keep strong.

Met up with Dirt again earlier this week, b/c once again I wanted to enjoy the beautiful weather.  Drinks at Tritone were enjoyed, and I had fun joking around with Rich.  Then we went to hang out with Coop and smoke a bit while listening to some reel-to-reel tapes he had picked up.  Came home and cooked dinner [we had another venture to the ghetto grocery store over the weekend, later at nite so it was an easy trip].  My plate broke as I was trying to eat, so that was awesome.

Doing my best to update the AE blog, and have a couple people interested in assisting me with it, so that relieves some stress.  While I enjoy DIY, sometimes one must be humble and admit that juggling too many tasks is not worth the risk.  Plus, it would be nice to get other perspectives, which will hopefully spark more interest.  At least I know that the blog is having an effect and that people get what I'm trying to do.  Which makes me all sorts of happy.

Yesterday I got an e-mail form a girl who wants to assist me with editing the magazine, so I'm looking forward to meeting up with her in the near future.  It never hurts to have someone to bounce ideas off of, and we are definitely on the right page as far as that goes.  There is a lot of excitement in general for the next issue, and I have a feeling that it will gain all the right attention. 

Not to be a dick, but I have noticed more comments on ModBlog recently that aren't as positive as they used to be.  Oh, and GG forbid you don't like what is posted and share your opinion about it.  Just b/c people aren't creaming themselves over every photo that is posted, doesn't mean that their voices should be ignored.  Thought it was funny that one person said something to the effect of, if you don't like what's here, start your own site and post whatever you want.  Kind of sounds like exactly what I did.

Posted almost all the pages from Issue 1 of Aesthetic Evolution on Facebook and already have been getting positive feedback, so that made me happy too.

Time to jump in the shower and get dolled up for the party in South Philly tonite.  Sword swallowing at some all ages show tomorrow.  Chillin with Suzi on Monday.  Life is super busy, and it feels fucking great.

On a final note, here's some video from earlier this month, when I performed at Tritone for Dark Mark's b-day. Apologies for the size/quality. Kahlene shot this with her phone.


Anita Fixx - Resurrection

Some day soon I am going to make an actual biography for this character, but for the time being, I thought that posting a sort of mini-introduction was in order.

The first time I ever put on clown face was...gee...seven or eight years ago? 

Unfortunately, there is a negative reputation that comes along with being a clown, such as having people mistake you for an ICP fan.  [Nothing wrong with being such, but I'm not a fan and don't feel like explaining this to those who are confused.]  Or, like me, you were semi-traumatized by clowns as a young child and find them to be really creepy.  My problem with them as a kid, was that they popped balloons and I did not like that at all.

However, there are also people out there who love clowns...and maybe even want to make love to them.  Which I happen to agree with, b/c nothing is funnier than good clown porn, but I digress.

Back in what I like to refer to as 'the good ol' days' of performing in the confines of the Pine Barrens in South Jersey, Anita Fixx was created and officially christened a clown by my late friend Jon.  He had an awesome gutter punk hobo clown, and we did some really raunchy, debaucherous things.  Those were the crazy days when we weren't afraid to bleed or cover ourselves in piles of whipped cream pies.  Man do I miss that.

When asked to perform for a local show about four years ago, it was made known that the people participating had to do so in the guise of a clown.  Of course I was excited to have the chance to don the clown face once again.  However, I do admit that I was quite rusty, and it took a while for me to find the right style for my face.

Fast forward to March of this year, when I decided to have some fun and resurrected Ms. Fixx one more time.  Of course I was thrilled to have executed such a nice face, considering I was a bit rusty with application and all.  Still have to find the right combination of elements, and want to have a couple of different variations just to mix it up,  but I definitely still love putting on the clown face.  Perhaps in the near future I will bring Ms. Fixx into the public for a rare performance or something like that.

Here a few of my favorite shots that depict the newest incarnation of Anita Fixx.  There are too many more right here.


What's That Smell?

Continuing with the journeys of a grindcore band from the depths of the filthy womb of the Hostile City, Fuck Face headed down to Maryland this past Saturday.  It was a sort of a teaser show for the Maryland Death Fest that is happening this weekend, so obviously there was much excitement.  This would be my third trip to the Old Line State, and we still have yet to invade Baltimore proper, but I have no doubt that will happen soon.

Headed out to the subway somewhere in the late afternoon, expecting the dreary, looming clouds above to attack me with rain at any moment.  Stopped at Walgreens for a drink and snack, and also so I could get change for the subway.  The cashier got distracted by my wig and asked if I was going to a tropical-themed party.  [This is why I need to start carrying business cards.]

Cue the long ride on the Orange Line and ignoring people who are pointing and laughing.  Seriously, I can see and hear you, particularly since you are right in front of my face.  There is a thing called manners, not to mention that handy little internal monologue where you can vent anything you want.  It is not worth wasting my time on ignorant knuckleheads, even tho every now and then it would give me quite the thrill to put them in their place.  Perhaps Casey had the right idea.  Suit up with tribal-based body modifications and go feral.  Roam the streets and take out everyone who does not deserve to be here.  How enjoyable it would be to peel some people's faces off and wear them like the masks they are.

Met up with Dirt outside FYE and was happy to see that the clouds were disappearing as we wandered and decided on what to eat.  Landed at this pizza shop we hit up when we saw TFD play at the Broad Street Ministry.  Yes, that is correct.  A church hosted a grindcore band with 'fuck' in its name.  One of the many reasons I love this city. 

Hopped in a cab to save time and arrived in South Philly.  A moment after we get out, Dirt is yelling "Yo fuck face!" down the street in greeting to Mike, and the three of us walk down to Walt's house.  Chilled on the steps to enjoy the setting sun while Dirt and Mike attended to band business.  [As usual, we were waiting on the arrival of Bob.]  Eventually went in and helped prepare some demos.  Then Bob was there and equipment was loaded into his truck.

Dirt and myself got to ride with Walt in his new SUV, which I have to say is far more comfortable than his other vehicle.  We are Fuck Face; we ride in pimpin' style. 

It was a nice drive down to Maryland, with no traffic to really speak of, other than what one might find on any ordinary highway.  Those heading in the opposite direction were less fortunate.  Smoked a bowl as we drove thru Delaware and were grooving on that when a strange odor crept in.  There are a number of things it did not smell like, so it was hard trying to figure out exactly what it was and where it might be coming from.  We thought maybe it was our vehicle, then maybe exhaust from the tractor trailers.  It would be stronger at some moments than others, and over all was really unpleasant.  Then we see this fan with a billow of blue smoke trailing behind it.  Why do people abuse their automobiles in such a way?  Obviously there is something wrong, so pull over and take care of it...or leave the vehicle at home.

That was pretty much the 'worst' thing that happened all nite, and made for some entertainment.

The three of us walked into the venue and were immediately hand-stamped.  No hassle for ID or entrance fee.  A band girlfriend could get used to this kind of royal treatment.  *haha*  Walt definitely had the munchies, as I watched eat two bowls of soup and a bowl of shrimp.  Then again, I got hungry myself after our first round of dollar Natty Bo's and snacked on some chicken tenders.  [Which would go nicely with the tuna and bacon club sandwich I had earlier].  Did I mention that beer was only one dollar?  Not being a beer snob or feeling as tho 'the hard stuff' is the way to go, I will have no shame going for the affordable beverage.

Overlea Station is a pretty cool venue; lots of bar space and seating with enough room left for the bands to play.  There were definitely a lot of people there as well, with several other bands that were set to play that evening.  Pretty much spent our time watching the other bands, drinking Natty Bo and occasionally going outside for fresh air.  Crept around this overgrown alley that led out of the parking lot to smoke a bowl.

Dirt and Mike having a smoke outside.

Mandatory bathroom self-portrait.

As a small note, I am certainly getting use out of the black/orange wig.  Even tho I am sure people think it's a Halloween wig [no...I make my own and use high quality materials, thanks].  Or that I am a fan of the Flyers, since their colors are black/orange.  Really just wanted to try something else beside red or blue, and of course enjoy getting use out of the coordinating hair flowers, not to mention the challenge of utilizing orange eyeshadow.

Where was I again?  Ah yes...rocking out in Maryland.  Was given the duty of being behind the video camera, which I have to say is an honor.  People do not easily trust others with expensive personal equipment.  Also have been wanting to expand my band documentary, so felt it was the right opportunity to do so.  However, the batteries died just as I was getting into it and filming Walt as he assaulted the drums.  It was pretty funny; I was taking pictures and shooting video at the same time.

It was cool to see a group of guys watching Walt.  Maybe they were looking for triggers?  No fakeness here, kids.  He's just that good.  There was one dude in the audience wearing an awesome Cocaine Fiends t-shirt who loved the wiener poop sample from South Park.  While some people depend on sampling to deliver what they obviously lack in, Dirt has hand-selected each one as a companion to the Fuck Face song that either proceeds or follows it.  Sometimes they get lost during the set, what with the immense noise the band can put out, so it's always nice to see that people get amped b/c they recognize the sample or its source.

As usual, a selection from the photographs taken during the set.


Spitting fire and still playing the drums.

The coordinating camouflage pants was totally accidental, but very hilarious.

Come for the grind; stay for the chainsaw mayhem.
The guy with the dreads and glasses is Eric, who is responsible for inviting Fuck Face to bring the grind.  Really awesome dude, and I hope to work with him at some point in the future. Also wanted to note that Mike had a great Murder Junkies clown t-shirt, and that watching people attack each other with a chainsaw [minus the blood, guts and dying] was definitely the highlight of the evening.

More bands, more Natty Bo and random conversation with this guy who liked my hair later, we were ready to go.  Not to mention that Dirt had work the next day and needed some kind of sleep.  There was some post-show chatting in the parking lot with Eric and this guy from one of the other bands.  His girl was a complete mess, puking on the asphalt, failing at walking and eventually laid down on the ground.  Some chicks just can't handle their alcohol.  Which is why I will always choose to drink and stay classy instead of making a public spectacle out of myself.  There is no pride in that, just the endless glory of being mocked by those who can see how truly pathetic it is.

Our journey back was pretty interesting, considering Walt had to struggle to keep himself awake.  Then again, I was tired myself and wound up passing out for most of the trip.  Woke up once when he stopped for some Monster, and eventually roused myself when we were back in Philly.  After the unloading of the band equipment and dropping off Mike at his place, it was after four in the a.m. by the time Dirt and got in bed.  He was definitely late for work that day.  *heh*

Absolutely thrilled that Fuck Face is going to be playing a show with Shat some time this Summer.  Shat is one of the few hardcore bands I had the pleasure of seeing when I still lived in Jersey.  They did a few pre-holiday anti-xmas shows at Connections up in Clifton with George Is Dead.  The first one I ever went to was due to the fact that a friend of mine who worked at Vintage Vinyl also played drums for GID.  Was dating a total asshole at the time, who not only wanted to control me, but would give me shit for any music I liked that either wasn't his or didn't fit his taste.  So I went to the shows alone to enjoy something new, and I have to say I'm glad I did.  George, who did vocals for GID, was certainly an impressive front man and channeled GG Allin quite well.  Shat was just pure amusement.  They came out in 'dirty' adult diapers, and one guy had a dildo mohawk glued to a helmet and strapped to his head.  You know that's going to be interesting on some level.

To get to the point, I suggested to Dirt some months ago that Fuck Face should play a show [or several] with Shat.  Both bands certainly have a similar sound musically speaking, and their content of the songs certainly go together.  Recently I discovered that this will in fact be a reality, as the drummer for Self-Medicated is also in Shat, and SM did a show with Fuck Face back in October for the release of Aesthetic Evolution.  So I not only get to support my boys, but I also get to enjoy a band I have not seen in several years.  The joy overfloweth.

Next Fuck Face Adventure: MOJO 13

Previous Aventures

My Penis Burns
It Was Wiener Poop

True friendship always lasts

Apparently not having on-line access really does effect your networking abilities.

Still enjoying being able to communicate with people via Facebook.  To be honest, I really thought it was just another place for vapid cunts to endlessly brag about their latest achievements of alt-scene-whoredom.  [Oh look, I just made up a new phrase.]  Happily this is not the case. 

Another girl I have not talked to in many years found me today and we chatted for a bit.  She is moving to East Falls very soon, so I will have at least one other person in the area I can chill with.  How I miss our afternoons of shit-talking on a certain someone that is so self-obsessed it's ridiculous.

In addition to that, posting stuff from Aesthetic Evolution [and having others do the same] will hopefully generate some interest for both the magazine and blog.  Plus, my old piercer/friend said a very well-known body mod artist was interested in being interviewed.  And I just sent out another one of those to a lovely lady in Canada.

Which reminds me that I have to send an e-mail to everyone who has not responded yet.  Then I can start putting together Issue 2 next month.  Then move on to filling the rest of the spots for the corresponding 2011 calendar.

Right now I am trying to focus on finishing this tattoo collage, as I have 13 more days until the deadline.  These rainy days and lack of proper 'inspiration' do not help, but I should not be making excuses either.  Should be able to get my head back into it tomorrow.

Going out in a little while to meet up with Miranda so we can have cheap drinks and catch up on what has been happening over the past couple of years.

Definitely feel better than I did a couple of weeks ago, and looking forward to rekindling several friendships. 

Annual memorial of my one time Carny companion coming on Friday.  It has been four long years since he passed, and while for the most part I have gotten past the pain and emotional stuff, at no time do I ever want him to be forgotten.  Even if I am the only one who still gives a shit.  Tragically, everyone else who knew him is either dead or moved on with their life.

To paraphrase something Dirt's late friend Mike Fifthian said, truly I am the last of a dying breed.

On a final note, there is some new bullshit stewing in the Hostile City.  Seems legislators want to regulate shows with a new law that would require them to be pre-approved by the police.  Do not allow others to control your freedom of expression. 

Sign the petition here: www.phillymetal.com/protest

Join the fight on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=119398468093320&ref=mf

Even if you are not in the area, pass it on and post it around as much as possible, b/c let's face it, your town could be next.