29 September 2010


I did imagine I would have a desk covered in a beautiful Iranian mat, spilling forth with books, strange trinkets I've collected like broken Kerr jars and pieces of animal bone, and gifts from other people like old photo slides, Franz Muscha prints, intricately embroidered quilt squares, and drawings.

I didn't quite foresee all of the nooks and crannies being stuffed with mini DV tapes, external hard drives, and film equipment.

What I never in a million years would have thought possible would be me, sitting here, at the afore mentioned desk, adding "moving back home–in the wintertime–to make a documentary" to my list of options post-graduation.

NOT THAT I'M NECESSARILY DOING ANYTHING ON THIS LIST (like getting one of those aboriginal-type piercings ((totally politically correct)) where there's a stick through my nose). 

{imagine annoying gameshow voice here:} WWWWelllllllll folks, is this just some temporary insanity, orrrrr is thiiii-iiissss the REEEEEEAAAAALLLLL DEEEEEAAAAALLLLLL?
only time will tell.
Purchase necessary. Prices and participating organizations may vary. Not intended for pregnant mothers. But not just for men. Not all supplies included in this box. 

28 September 2010

they do exist!

Filmic classes may be four hours long but we're given lots of breaks. And in these breaks sometimes I feel like I've gotten in the middle of an Old Boys Club meeting. I could join in–I mean I haven't been geeking out over Monty Python my whole life so I don't necessarily recognize every reference made and maybe I won't have a lot of input–but there's this strange mode of communication going on. First of all, there is a distance of at least five seats and one row in between every participating male. Secondly, they are all coming to the feeding ground from a different direction that I don't recognize and can't define. And maybe I become mildly confused because I've stumbled into an oasis of stereotypicality. At these points I roll my eyes and look for something productive to do rather than jaw the fat around a chess game that's going nowhere. By productive I mean I draw paisley patterned circles around things I want to research when I get home.

in the middle of loretta young rapping

Feliz Birthday my dearest Henry Blessing!

you might want to explode (from overwhelming greatness) after seeing this duo.

27 September 2010

did you realize I see film as something that explains the divine?

I don't imagine that heaven is much different from this life we lead now. But I assume some bonuses might be that our possibilities are expanded like they are in animation and with special effects; and I assume all film will be restored to its original quality and we can watch them as they were meant to be watched.

These are things I think as I reread my film history book.

There is danger in my brain.

26 September 2010

when we pray is it breaking the fourth wall?

Things that were said today:

Before Sunday School starts I turn to G:
-What is it about church that makes me want to not talk to people?
-You hate large groups of people.
-Oh, yeah. You're right.

Monstruo Uno–my little nannykin who is now six and has no more baby-fat in his face!–shows me his latest lego castle contraption:
-And I made him the king because he has a mustache.

Later Uno, Dos, and I are all building together:
"I'm busy building this gibbergabbermumblemumble" says Dos.
"I'm busy too!"
"Can I be busy with you guys?" I ask.
"You're always busy with us," says Uno.

All of these things are undeniable facts. I wish I could figure out how to change some of them. Mustachioed kings? Really.

25 September 2010

Your request has been looked into and a verdict has been reached. Permission NOT granted to have a day where you can lay in the hammock in pj's and read and pretend you don't have deadlines to meet. Seven days already makes a WEEK bulge at the seems. The Beatles wrote a hit song and never got their wish so we're unsure of what you think merits you pestering around our doors and making selfish requests. Please woman-up and leave at your earliest convenience (NOW) by the earliest (NOW) train. And never come back again.
The Tribunal of Time

22 September 2010

is this when the light comes into your eyes?

I agree with my friend T, this is something to watch.

Umbra (HD - 2010) from Malcolm Sutherland on Vimeo.

If you were here I would now have a conversation with you about how I feel about life. But maybe these things are better without words.

21 September 2010

ster trak

So I am graduating. After a bit of panic this morning that necessitated wearing my red rain boots today so I could feel better and a trip to see if T, my bear, could fix my life which he did I can now proudly say that it is for sure: I am graduating. I am now also signed up for 17 credits which sounds intimidating except that I'm not doing anything new, I've merely accepted that I need to get school credit for these latest projects, the kind of projects I've been working on for the last three years. And when I put it that way it's funny. In a hysterical way. Like this: hahahahahahahahahahahaha......ha.

20 September 2010

Could we go to the theatre and watch the silver screen?
I'll know I'll get cold so I'll bring that thick, old, mustard sweater that I love.
You'll be charming and sincere.
And we'll hold hands.

Someday movie theatres will be pretty again, that's what I say.

17 September 2010

I disagree with myself very often, by the way

Part of me wants to ignore the romantic in me. I want to blunder happily along my single, film-obsessed life until the day I wake up and realize I'm in love with something other than film, in fact, in love with somebody.

Most parts of me would be horrified to find myself in this situation. I do not receive information well, I struggle with information until everybody ends up with lots of battle scars.

Once I watched a strange French movie with a boy. The people in the movie learned by putting on headphones and having a voice tell them a bunch of facts. I said I'd hate that, he said what's wrong with that, I said if you can't ask any questions why would you believe any of it?

Lately I can't get enough of Bob Dylan's song I want you. Perhaps leaving out the complexity of the character of Bob Dylan, it's everything I've found endearing and infuriating when boys have told me they liked me. The harmonica is the happiest, most sincere troubadour in the world and I stare wide-eyed thinking about how someone's just described an entire planet in one word. 

15 September 2010

and I need films like these

first they shocked the horse with an electric current.

hey spider.

when I killed you tonight when I got home and saw you were still in my bathroom, well I'm sorry. I meant it when I said "but that's just not where you're supposed to live, dammit." And I knew I was committing an abominable sin. You're a spider but there's life and there's death and we have no idea what we're doing. I'm not being facetious this time, I wish I were.

I've got hope these things work out, I really believe they do–  but you know, it's still such a fallen thing.

Can't you all just see how divine you and everything and everybody else is/are?

from m, who apologizes for being such a dramatic, somber child but sometimes it takes you a while to get back in balance after watching a film of the slaughter of various kinds of animals (the baby cows are the worst), especially if you're the type of person who can't help but think about all the other horrible things that happen in the world. there's beauty and there's glory and there's hope and I love humanity but. This is why I need Christ. You've all got your own ideas but I need mine.

Sometimes I imagine I'm a little girl again, back in my Grandma's basement watching the first film by Norman McClaren I had ever seen. 

God, do you close your eyes sometimes?

read this.

14 September 2010

safari hat to study the natives with

Grammar is a funny thing, that.

So maybe I've listened to Beyonce's Halo a million times in the last 30 hours. I do not feel bad about this. And interestingly enough, my Beyonce craze is coinciding with my new ownership of a radio. That's spelled R-A-D-I-O. I think they invented them back in the 1990's. Ancient times, I know.

I have not owned a radio since high school but now I own one because my mom was afraid I would continue to have alarm clock troubles which is an entirely different story that has to do with flashlights that I've painted white.

I got an alarm clock with a radio because I would die if I had to wake up to BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP. Plus I'm curious to hear what I can find on el radio. I'm so out of touch I feel like an ethnographer switching through the channels. Stations? What do we say in radio speak? I don't know. Because in the last five years the only radio I've listened to is Pandora or NPR.

I've been experimenting with stations over the last couple of weeks. I perch on the edge of my bed clipping my fingernails (over a trash can, of course, just so you know I'm not one of those sickos that lets their clippings go all over the place) and find a station playing Mary J. Blige. I stay there because I remember Miss Blige and I can almost sing along with a couple of lines in her song. This may be pathetic.

So far I can't seem to figure out what's a good frequency and I'm not letting myself switch back to NPR yet. Yup*, I'm being strong, I will not succumb to my comfort zone. At least for a while. But this means that I have no idea what I'll be waking up to every morning. Will this be one of those stations that has a crazy array of DJs? In the morning they cater to the late 30's commuting crowd and at 3:30 p.m. they pump it up for teenie-boppers? It's a game of russian roulette.

On another note we're starting to work on our creative non-fiction essays in my writing class. Uh, yes, you noted that we're submitting them for publication? They tell me I can pick between The New Yorker or the campus literary magazine. H, if I'm going to submit something for publication why would I pick just one? That hardly seems worth the effort. Plus, the campus lit mag seems rather dismal because I was the only person in the class who'd heard of it. I like it, personally, but again, I present to you the letter H. It's all going to come tumbling down, ladies and gentleman. Every piece of civilization and culture.

And in case you were keeping track, in the course of typing this out to fill your eyes with my dribble I have listened to Halo another five times. Congratulations to the lady in the corner who guessed correctly! She wins a one-way ticket to vacation in Jamaica for five days. How she gets back is her own affair.

*This is something we say in the upper midwest, as in, "Yup." We were a people of few words.

12 September 2010

neil gaiman

is beginning to be a favorite author of mine.

And I was thinking, if I ever wrote a book –which is not reeealllllyyy in my plan but I don't like to rule anything out, especially things like working in a mine shaft– my bio-blurb would say:

Marge Bjork (1987-2103) never set out to write, she set out to document. Mark Twain once said, "I could never learn to like her –except on a raft at sea with no other provisions in sight." It is unclear if he was speaking specifically of Marge.

11 September 2010

now i am snappier (finger snapping snappier)

I've always known that I never want to see the future. It's too much to see outcomes before you make choices. I've thought about that this weekend because something happened yesterday that made me think of all the decisions I made this summer that had consequences I could never have imagined. And I'm about to make many more bigly-ramificated decisions.

I've never been in the habit of regretting anything. But sometimes I wonder how I would feel if I hadn't gotten out of that bus and walked back on that road and seen those people. And those children. The fact that I saw them is my only clue as to why I still get upset sometimes. Even though the images have faded, the way it felt still comes back.

I wanted to apologize that I keep making my blog a therapy vehicle but I don't think any of us are really clear on what blogs are supposed to be. And I read something today that made me think you shouldn't just love me for my brain. My whole life I've tried too hard to remain calm all the time. If I'm going to try to come to terms with my emotions, you are too, dangit.

I just wonder if I hadn't seen it, what would be different? Would the feeling of being suspended in the air when you drive over a bump still feel like five people dying?

This is only part of one choice I made this summer. Actually, decisions I made a year ago have been surfacing unexpectedly as well. Thus is the richness of life, I guess. Makes us linen instead of cheap, machine-knit jersey. Linen's pretty great.

Snappier rhymes with happier, by the way. Funny how we're a million things at once. 

10 September 2010

there's a line in this song

Till that time has come when we can live as one, can I dance with you? Ba, ba, ba, ba, ba, ba, ba, ba, ba, ba, ba, ba
The funny thing about that last post is that I kept thinking about how I believe God is love. So according to my new philosophy, God fills me with holes.

Which is fitting.

09 September 2010

why i am going to turn on some carole king while i think about eating dinner tonight

I just finished reading The History of Love. It's a legitimate book, I'm not being cutesy. In fact, it's so legitimate, maybe you've heard of it.

Somewhere in its pages it talks about love (imagine that). The love where you love someone but then they are gone and there's a hole...or maybe it's that your love grows around them and you're a tree and then they're gone. You love them, they become part of you, you grow and then they're gone; and like a tree that makes space inside itself for something that is near it or rests on its bark you now have a space inside yourself for something new. 

Because the truth is, you never had the right to keep that something forever, to yourself, inside your bark. So now there is a hole and it needs to be filled by something else. That's why we fall into this pattern of behavior that people call "the rebound." But the rebound seeks for an immediate fill for empty spaces. I don't think this suffices. For each void we need to try at least ten new things and in the process of trying we're bound to make new holes.

We love and then things change, it doesn't mean there isn't love that lasts or that love that doesn't last is bad, it just means that we keep accumulating holes and we keep filling them with different things. This is how we embrace the world around us. It begins at birth when we must all the time be held and be loved and then we learn we are separate from everyone who has been holding and loving us. Our first hole. So we try something new. And so it continues.

To make the holes go away would be deforestation.

08 September 2010

the city i'm in

I dreamed of looking like this when I was a child.
I don't, by the way.

My attitude towards what I do post-graduation is a combination of shooting for the furthest galaxy and despondency. When an idea pops into my head I say, "Why not?" Except that in my current outlook it sounds more like "Why not."

I'm applying for a job at the Sundance Film Festival.
The National Film Board of Canada's job listings page is now in my folder of websites I check just about everyday.
I'm planning on spending a couple of months in Hawaii.
A week to a month in Seattle. Or move there entirely. I want a big city.
Study Spanish and live in Spain for a month. Imagine Spain in May.
Work with troubled youth in Australia.

I really am seriously considering all of these things.

Because what do people like me do in my position? People who are passionate about and fascinated by everything but are dipping into morose-osity because they lack direction. People like me move to Israel and work on a kibbutz (something I've thought about doing since I was 19). I research my future by checking one-way ticket prices to places all over the globe. Right now my future is affordable because it's months away and I have no deadlines. I am completely and utterly flexible.

I don't promise I'll do all these things. In a way, I hope I don't. Not like this. I will see the world, but I'd hate to be a wanderer trying to find their way out of morose-osity. The way life comes to me I can never find my future. It's not until the present is ending that I suddenly find my new purpose. I dream up plans and purposes because why should I sit around for something to be handed to me on a plate, but it's like throwing weak magnets at a fridge and watching them slide slowly down.

I know it will work out.


This time it's a big deal.
This time it's more stressful.
I'd like to have a purpose.

Did you know this is who I am inside?

maybe the most important thing I'll ever have to write about

so I have a nephew. He's pretty cute.

There are some fears I've developed over the last year:
1. I'm afraid of birth control
2. because my own hormones are weird enough.
3. I escape into my thoughts or reading when women start having conversations about the more unpleasant aspects of being pregnant and giving birth.
4. Which is strange for me because usually I eat up things women tell me,
5. even the less pretty things,
6. because these are things I should know.
7. But these stories scare me more than reality does.
8. At least I hope so.

I love my sister and seeing her in labor was not scary for me. 
I wondered if I became a doula and was part of lots of births if I would not be so afraid of what has been part of womanhood since Eve. 
When I hear those stories of pregnancy and birth I want to cry with the weight of the pain of it all. It all seems mournful and unfair.
When I saw my sister all I could think is that she is the most beautiful woman on earth. This is my sister who I have adored since my birth. She has been my everything. I know that pout of her lip, her soft sweet voice, her opinionated voice, her careful and patient attention to every detail, the gentle way she does everything, her stubbornness. I wished I had brought some William Carlos Williams poetry to read to her at the hospital. She winked at me while she was in pain.

My sister is the most beautiful woman on the earth. When she was in labor it was not scary; I could often feel how joyful it was that she was giving birth. I would have been always joyful but there were some complications and they drag at your spirits, they do.

While my mother (who is also the most beautiful woman on the earth) and I waited for my sister and the baby to come out of surgery we held each other and my mother told me that as she watches my sister she thinks of how children make you a better person. "You make me a better person," she says as she squeezes me tightly. I think on our relationship and the things we've learned and I rest my head on her shoulder. I also think that it's hard to imagine my sister, who is already amazing, becoming better.

And then they brought out my baby nephew and I saw his little face.
I love him.

07 September 2010

dispatch II: a study in being concise.

Today I watched episodes two and three of Monte Python's Flying Circus.

I picked up a stack of papers to grade.

I answered some emails.


And I became an aunt.

05 September 2010


my sister's water broke at 6:30 this morning. I woke up at 8:30 to four missed calls, two voicemails, and a text message. I had a little swell of panic rise up when I saw this, thinking, "oh hell, I've missed the birth" but then realized that I'm not about to start feeling this feeling people call "regret" now, since I've never felt it much about anything else. No, I will not prepare for regret, I will only prepare for momentary sadness and then lots of joy.

I did not miss the birth, however, and have been enjoying a day with my sister, brother-in-law, mom, and sister's best friend. Now my sister's in-laws are here and soon best friend's husband and two kids will be descending upon us as well. It is special to spend a day when we're all intent and focused on each other.

Contractions have been five minutes apart for the last two hours. The midwife says we can stay at home until contractions are two minutes apart and my sister no longer wants to talk to anyone.

So maybe we will play some scrabble. I don't know. But I do know that I am tired and this is something that maybe we will experience again some time in our lives, and maybe some others here have experienced pre-birth and birth and families like this. But this is new for me. And the only thing I would change is that my dad would be here, too.

Here's for a long night.

too spectacular to be titled.

04 September 2010

02 September 2010

sh-boom. no really, dynamite. how much for that dynamite?

yesterday––in a class which I can't decide if I shall refer to it as "avant garde class" or "that wednesday night class" because "critical issues" is such a boring name––I watched this scene from the Antonioni film Zabriskie Point and I desperately wanted to buy some dynamite.

Watch this so that it fills your entire screen and imagine how dreamy it would be to watch on the big screen. (P.S. you'll probably have to go to youtube to do that just because I still have not bothered to change my blog's configurations.) 


many happy things happened before and after this clip (for example, I decided to learn how to make official em dashes in my typing but I also made the resolution to continue my obnoxious habit of "over"-utilizing parenthetical phrases) (as if you could over-utilize parenthetical phrases), however, this is all for tonight.

01 September 2010

shake it shake it shake it

New tune to add to my list of favorites. Today I had to take a break from making my rosemary, olive oil matzo because I couldn't resist twisting to this song. As you watch, consider whether or not the lead singer is Ron Weasley.