Thursday, March 30, 2006

word of the day: cathexis

(taken from
cathexis • \kuh-THEK-sis\ noun : investment of mental or emotional energy in a person, object, or idea

Example sentence:The cathexis of a mother for her daughter can be the source of a girl's confidence and stability later in life.

Another example: (interpretations in my head)
depending on a mother’s emotional state, the cathexis, or better yet the lack of it, might be what transforms vibrant, loquacious girls into querulous, self-doubting daughters who lie on floors, vacantly stare at ceilings in rooms with padded walls.

Still another:
my cathexis for my artistic process is a mutha. I mean… I can’t perform in a play, pen a poem, choreograph a routine without the life I tried to leave in the other room, interjecting some unresolved this or that; creeping in, eyeballing my work and calling me a fraud.

life is a beautiful bitch...then you fly.

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

question: “have you ever fallen in love?” my answer, “all the time.”

Last night began our first night of rehearsals for the forthcoming performances for the Austin Project. (April 8th & 9th so mark your calendars!) anyway, this night focused on love. real loving. Led by the brilliant Laurie Carlos, (in short) we each had an opportunity to sit in the center of the circle of beautiful spirits and accept offerings love and appreciation for just being who we are. And it’s amazing to find out how many positive thoughts other people actually have about you. to find out that you matter. And then, to watch each woman be so generous with compliments and offerings of adoration for other women. That happens too few and too far between in our culture. I fell in love over and over and over again last night. I am so grateful. Allahu Akbar.

I fell in love with my children again this weekend as well. On Saturday, they both had their first flag football games. Salihah cheered. Naim played. They were both completely excited about their new athletic pursuits. (Salihah is definitely her momma’s child.) But Naim… my more reserved child, usually preferring to stand behind me with his head tucked under my shirt than take the lead on this or that, is an amazing athlete! I mean, I knew he was fast but of the 4 touchdowns the team made, Naim ran 3 of them! And not only ran them but dodged and spun, faked out the defense. I went WILD on the sidelines! Aside from his coach/dad and I, he (Naim) was so proud… so proud. Even better, his sister was proud of him and they shared a bit of joy between them. (Gotta recognize the bonding moments cuz the rivalry can be overshadowing.) now, if I could only get them to clean their rooms without threats or some act of God…

Finally, I guess I’ll post that I recently joined the editorial staff as Sr. Editor for the Motion Picture section of ATX Magazine. It’s very new but I think (we) have a great visionary in Megan Bettis. I am EXTREMELY grateful for the opportunity. I will officially begin work after the Austin Project performances. I am looking forward to what promises to be a wonderful ride!
i’m a 47. what are you?

no not on a scale of 1 to 10. i got the following in the mail. i decided to post it here because i thought it was a fun interactive thing to post. feel free to paste it into an email and continue circulating it, which is how i received it initially. i am keeping the instructions with it as well, so (hopefully) nothing gets lost in translation. have fun!


Dr Phil's Test:
Below is Dr Phil's test. (Dr. Phil scored 55; he did this test on Oprah - she got a 38.) Some folks pay a lot of money to find this stuff out!Read on, this is very interesting!Don't be overly sensitive! The following is pretty accurate and it only takes 2 minutes. Take this test for yourself and send it to your friends.The person who sent it placed their score in the e-mail subject box. Please do the same before forwarding to your friends (send it back to the person who sent it to you.) Don't peek, but begin the test as you scroll down and answer.Answers are for who you are now...... not who you were in the past. Have pen or pencil and paper ready. This is a real test given by the Human Relations Dept. at many of the major corporations today. It helps them get better insight concerning their employees and prospective employees. It's only 10 simple questions, so...grab a pencil and paper, keeping track of your letter answers to each question.Make sure to change the subject of the e-mail to read YOUR total. When you are finished, forward this to friends/family, and also send it to the person who sent this to you. Make sure to put YOUR score in the subject box.



1. When do you feel your best?
a) in the morning
b) during the afternoon &and early evening
c) late at night

2. You usually walk...
a) fairly fast, with long steps
b) fairly fast, with little steps
c) less fast head up, looking the world in the face
d) less fast, head down
e) very slowly

3. When talking to people you..
a) stand with your arms folded
b) have your hands clasped
c) have one or both your hands on your hips
d) touch or push the person to whom you are talking
e) play with your ear, touch your chin, or smooth your hair

4. When relaxing, you sit with..
a) your knees bent with your legs neatly side by side
b) your legs crossed
c) your legs stretched out or straight
d) one leg curled under you

5. When something really amuses you, you react with...
a) big appreciated laugh
b) a laugh, but not a loud one
c) a quiet chuckle
d) a sheepish smile

6. When you go to a party or social gathering you...
a) make a loud entrance so everyone notices you
b) make a quiet entrance, looking around for someone you know
c) make the quietest entrance, trying to stay unnoticed

7. You're working very hard, concentrating hard, and you're interrupted......
a) welcome the break
b) feel extremely irritated
c) vary between these two extremes

8. Which of the following colors do you like most?
a) Red or orange
b) black
c) yellow or light blue
d) green
e) dark blue or purple
f) white
g) brown or gray

9. When you are in bed at night, in those last few moments before going to sleep you are..
a) stretched out on your back
b) stretched out face down on your stomach
c) on your side, slightly curled
d) with your head on one arm
e) with your head under the covers

10. You often dream that you are...
a) falling
b) fighting or struggling
c) searching for something or somebody
d) flying or floating
e) you usually have dreamless sleep
f) your dreams are always pleasant

1. (a) 2 (b) 4 (c) 6
2. (a) 6 (b) 4 (c) 7 (d) 2 (e) 1
3. (a) 4 (b) 2 (c) 5 (d) 7 (e) 6
4. (a) 4 (b) 6 (c) 2 (d) 1
5. (a) 6 (b) 4 (c) 3 (d) 5 (e) 2
6. (a) 6 (b) 4 (c) 2
7. (a) 6 (b) 2 (c) 4
8. (a) 6 (b) 7 (c) 5 (d) 4 (e) 3 (f) 2 (g) 1
9. (a) 7 (b) 6 (c) 4 (d) 2 (e) 1
10. (a) 4 (b) 2 (c) 3 (d) 5 (e) 6 (f) 1

Now add up the total number of points.

OVER 60 POINTS: Others see you as someone they should "handle with care." You're seen as vain, self-centered, and who is extremely dominant. Others may admire you, wishing they could be more like you, but don't always trust you, hesitating to become too deeply involved with you.

51 TO 60 POINTS: Others see you as an exciting, highly volatile, rather impulsive personality; a natural leader, who's quick to make decisions, though not always the right ones. They see you as bold and adventuresome, someone who will try anything once; someone who takes chances and enjoys an adventure. They enjoy being in your company because of the excitement you radiate.

41 TO 50 POINTS: Others see you as fresh, lively, charming, amusing, practical, and always interesting; someone who's constantly in the center of attention, but sufficiently well-balanced not to let it go to their head. They also see you as kind, considerate, and understanding; someone who'll always cheer them up and help them out. (I LIKE MY SCORE!!!)

31 TO 40 POINTS: Others see you as sensible, cautious, careful & practical. They see you as clever, gifted, or talented, but modest. Not a person who makes friends too quickly or easily, but someone who's extremely loyal to friends you do make and who expect the same loyalty in return. Those who really get to know you realize it takes a lot to shake your trust In your friends, but equally that it takes you a long time to get over if that trust is ever broken.

21 TO 30 POINTS: Your friends see you aspainstaking and fussy. They see you as very cautious, extremely careful, a slow and steady plodder. It would really surprise them if you ever did something impulsively or on the spur of the moment, expecting you to examine everything carefully from every angle and then, usually decide against it. They think this reaction is caused partly by your careful nature.

UNDER 21 POINTS: People think you are shy, nervous, and indecisive, someone who needs looking after, who always wants someone else to make the decisions & who doesn't want to get involved with anyone or anything! They see you as a worrier who always sees problems that don't exist. Some people think you're boring. Only those who know you well know that you aren't.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

i lived to blog about it!!!

well, i'm still breathing and that's a good sign. sweetie bubu is out of the country and this greater distance makes the regular distance seem like cake. seven days and counting...

staying bizzy helps. actually, i've been more like crazy bizzy. the last few weeks have been wonderfully and amazingly hectic. AWP was off the hizzle (off da heezy? the shizzle? am i showing my age?). so many beautiful cave canem folks in town. i also got to meet ccers whose paths i had not crossed before, natasha t., honoree and toni l., whose rasp i just fell in love with. but you don't realize how deeply you miss people until you see them again. i couldn’t believe i actually had my tara-tara in my city. and i got to spend time with the ever-so-lovely-and-loving remica. me and raina gabbed all night saturday (in fact i don’t even remember falling asleep), reminding me of cc all over again. (still trying to get her to move here.) great to see tyhimba (lovin’ leadbelly) even though he called forth the hat and didn’t bear witness to the magic of it (lol). my fingers got to reminisce in what hair feels like with jarita around (my beautiful former hair twin) and i got to see my trini sista lauryn (yay!) and amaud big-poppa-johnson, and tim seibels who was my intro to cc in the first place; and terrance and doug and demetris and jacqueline and stephanie and my gibbous moon sisters (natasha m. [as anime] and manda-manda [the warrior priestess]), and camille and ruth ellen--who looked fabulously happy. and toi and cornelius! got to hang a bit with friend of cc walter m. and lawd, lawd, lawd hammercy... hung out strong with patricia who spits the most brilliant poems on the spot to beat boxing brothers hanging inside windows amid the sweat and heat of 2am partying and patron. poets at club 115! THAT made the entire conference worth it! (so was sam's barbeque with ron and ronnie... bam!!!) thankyouthankyouthankyou ALL for the inspired memories, again, and again and again. is there ever a time that cave canem experience isn’t amazing?

fortunately where awp ended on saturday at the convention center was where i picked up my volunteer staff badge for sxsw which started off amazingly, having met kick ass penman of blockbusters like hook (remember that?), muppets treasure island, lara croft’s tomb raider and sahara, screenwriter jim hart. his wife and i became fast friends on an escalator ride to the panel he was doing where she got me into the already packed proceedings. (how could you not love the guy who wrote muppets treasure island?) anyway, being so loved by his wife, she promised to call—never did, though i imagine sxsw swept them into the funnel cloud that is the festival. but i did see a great, very smart, utterly cute film (funky boots) and worked my butt off as a volunteer. i also realized that i didn’t remember as much of final cut pro as i thought i had and nearly committed myself to the room with padded walls after my bout with the program in the dv editing suite. but i am breathing now and the memories and hindsight, are pretty amazing so i have no complaints.

my son’s birthday also passed since we last spoke. he is now seven. my poor second child whose birthday happens just before spring break every year. we had an in-class party but we have yet to follow up with the “all-the-kids-you-can-take romp and sleepover at my house or with his dad. so many of his friends out of town on the break and this new divorce situation makes the slices of chaos just that much more thick. i pray it isn’t the thing he’ll be laying on some therapist’s couch years from now, feeling neglected about. but if not this, then i guess we could chose from the list of other things we mothers (and fathers) do to make our children seek therapy. look at all of the stuff i blame on my parents. (lol) just kidding… kinda.

oh, i guess i should report, for those of you waiting to hear,… i didn’t get tribeca. the great thing is that i’m not at all upset about it. if you all recall, i had a live reading of the screenplay just after i submitted it and realized a good fistful of shortcomings. knowing they existed make it easier to digest the rejection. i’m getting better. (no bald patches of scalp this time!) i’m kidding!!! (kinda)

finally, my mother, her friend jada and i hustled into new orleans saturday morning and out by saturday night to retrieve the last of my mother’s things. (don’t tell her she officially lives in austin now. it doesn’t delight her.) but she is relieved and finding peace with her new life here. the trip itself was overwhelming. i video taped as much as i could with the time we had. going to toy with documentary. we’ll see what happens. not that I didn’t understand and empathize before but i now see (first hand) why my mother is so angry. there is so much work to be done. so much work. mad love to the common ground relief project and habitat for humanity and all of the college students committing their time to gutting houses and doing some of that work. they set a good example for the rest of us.

ok, this was meant to be a check in to let y’all know i am still alive and doin’ salsa!!! (monday nights!) anyway, take care til next time!

love thangs and chicken wangs…


Thursday, March 09, 2006

We made the BEST BETS in the EVENTS section for!!! Come check it out y'all!

sistas aloud!
cave canem poets featured at benefit reading for the national women's alliance.
TOMORROW NIGHT!!! march 10, 2006 @ 7:00 p.m.
st. edward's university - jones auditorium 3001
s. congress ave. austin, tx 78704
$10 public $5 with student or seu i.d .

austin, tx - the gibbous moon collective in partnership with the seu students of african heritage association (saha) bring you sistas aloud! - a poetry reading featuring cave canem poets to benefit the national women's alliance on march 10, 2006. featured cave canem poets are: jacqueline johnson, raina j. leon, jarita davis, ramica bingham, stephanie pruitt, amanda johnston, shia shabazz, natasha marin, tara betts (hbo def poet), toni asante lightfoot (hbo def poet), and special guest, cave canem faculty member, patricia smith (hbo def poet.)

link to download flier: