Monday, February 18, 2013

The world is waiting

Not that this would be their definition of sober, but anyway, the most important part — it’s here, our art show: The 12 Steps — DON'T GET BLOOD ON THE CARPET.

1. We admitted we needed a power vacuum.

2. Came to believe that a power vacuum could restore us to sanity.

3. Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of Vacuum as we understood Vacuum.

4. Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of every brand of power vacuum, including ourselves.

5. Admitted to Vacuum, to our own vacuum, and to another vacuum the exact nature of our wrongs.

6. Were entirely ready to have Vacuum remove all manufacturing defects, including character.

7. Humbly asked Vacuum to remove our shortcomings.

8. Made a list of all vacuums we had harmed, and became willing to make amends by vacuuming.

9. Made direct amends to such vacuums wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or other brands.

10. Continued to take personal inventory of the vacuum industry, and when we were wrong, promptly admitted it.

11. Sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with Vacuum as we understood Vacuum, praying only for knowledge of Vacuum’s will for us and the power to vacuum that out.

12. Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to vacuum all our affairs, including anyone who doesn't believe in vacuuming.

Don't worry, you don't have to remember these 12 steps. Yet. It's all written on the shade. Just as you enter our apartment. And I do mean shade. Turn the corner, and, of course, the runway. Remember how I looked and looked for that white carpet? Well, I couldn't find the right remnant until I noticed the hallway runners – yes, yes, can you believe it? Seven feet of pure white now featuring big black letters on the sides saying DON'T GET BLOOD ON THE CARPET.

And that leads you right over to the table and chairs, covered in cards, remember?

WHAT TO DO WHEN YOU'VE JUST BEEN RAPED: Fix your hair. Brush your teeth. Smile. Make dinner. Fix your lipstick. Shave. Make coffee. Get ready for work. Tie your shoes. Find new buttons. Wash your face. Get groceries. Trim your nails. Take a Xanax. Do the dishes. Do push-ups. Abdominals. More deodorant. Go shopping. Watch a movie. Vacuum. Pour a cocktail. Read the newspaper. Take out the garbage. Wash the sheets. Rearrange furniture. Buy flowers. Drink juice. Read a magazine. Get the mail. Turn on music. Make tea. Clean the toilet. Organize your room. Weed the garden. Air freshener. Take a Valium. Go to work. Go to school. Go to bed. Go dancing. Smile. Do laundry. Get a tan. Go to the gym. Pour wine. Drink a beer. Go out for cocktails. Eat a salad. Get a haircut. Take a shower. Remember to floss.

I know — that’s a full deck of cards. And yes, there is overlap. We all know about overlap. And then, you look up at the wall and oh, honey, JoAnne's snakes — slithering in every direction, layered in paint and oil pastel and marker and scratches and spit and blood and cigarette ash and glue. Snakes of every messy gooey oozy cracked and exploding color but all the faces are blank, some with smears and smudges but otherwise pristine white with words in the middle made from newspaper cutouts: Medusa Oblongata, Medusa Fermata, Medusa Desiderata, Medusa Stigmata, Medusa Tomato Insalata, Medusa Carne Asada, Medusa Yada Yada, Medusa Piñata, Medusa Regatta, Medusa Dada, Medusa Messiah — and, of course, Medusa Matzoh.

But which Medusa represents which step? Darling, choose your own adventure.

And, no, I have no idea why we decided they all have to rhyme. Or, maybe messiah doesn't rhyme with matzoh, but close.

When the Medusas end, a lovely area of neutral sandpaper on our plush purple walls, and on the sandpaper in tiny letters: your skin is so soft. And, on the wall just above our lovely vacuum cleaner perched next to the sofa, the mirror with HELP in razors. And, the unfinished jewelry box on the mirrored card table, it’s almost at HEL. What to do when you've just been raped, indeed.

The music, of course, is Armand Van Helden — because, work me, goddammit.

Pictures, we need pictures!

Wait, I'm the photographer.

And I'm the choreographer.

And I'm the dealer.

And I'm the healer, stealer, feeler and concealer.

Dealer, how much for Medusa Matzoh.

You're the dealer.

Not. For. Sale.

Please, please sell it to me.


Pretty please, with slivers of gold and arsenic on top.

I said never.

A million dollars.

I won't take less than 1.2.


            Frida, we have an offer of 1.15.

Franz, Fritz, Felix, Fabus, Frankie, Felice.

Gilda, Gertie, Gabriel, Gavin, Goldie.

Hans, Hector, Horatio, Herman, Herbert.

Igor, Ivy, — oh, who else?


With a Y.

Jayson. Jeremiah. Jackson.

Miss Jackson if you're nasty.

Ooh you nasty girl.

Kelly. Kylie. Kevin. Kate. Kara.


That's a C. As in cunt.

You said it.

Takes one to know one.

Welcome to Boston.

Where are we, where are we?

Liam. Leila. Lani. Lisa.

Medusa. Medusa. Medusa.

Oh, good, I'm frozen.

Too good to be true – we sold out the whole show. So much for our opening.

Oh, I'm ready for bed.

You're never ready for bed. We're only getting started.

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