Electric Sideshow Does a House Party

[Originally written on this date in 2005]

Coming back from the post office the other afternoon, I saw someone walking up the street and we made eye contact – for a moment something clicked in my memory.  Somewhere in the depths of my mind, his face registered and connected with a name.  The possibility that out of all the streets in all the towns in all of New fucking Jersey, he had moved onto mine was dismissed as I laughed a little.

No way, it wasn’t him.

Earlier in the day I had been thinking about how people often came into my life only to drift out of it again, wondering what ever happens to those that left a lasting impression.  For whatever reason, he had been one of those individuals, and the brief time we spent as friends was one of the highlights of attending cosmetology school.

While searching for my debit card I see someone standing outside, possibly trying to figure out if they should knock or ring the bell.  Relieving him of that decision, he introduces himself as the new neighbor and we shake hands.  Seeing his face up close stirs memories; I knew it was him when I had passed him on the street and looked down at the tattoos on his fingers.  All suspicions were confirmed when he said his name and yet the pessimistic part of me still refused to believe it was him.

During our casual conversation, he mentions the cosmetology school and that was when I smiled. “You fucker, we went to the same school,” I said, laughing.

His eyes studied me for a moment before lighting up with recognition.  Next thing I know his arms are around me and we are both smiling.

Shane is definitely one of those people I never thought I would see again, so it was kind of funny that he had recently moved to the area.  Much like myself, he was going crazy over the lack of rude, crude, tattoo’d trash.  It was wonderful to have come across a kindred spirit, especially one I figured had just been lost like so many others.  With my partner in crime being absent at the moment, I could really use a cool cat to hang with every now and then.  Though the whole encounter felt weird, I still had a huge smile on my face when he said good-bye.

A couple of days later, my performing partner’s brother decided to have one last farewell house party before leaving for a job in Arizona next month, and since there would be a few dozen people attending, it was mutually agreed that Electric Sideshow should make an appearance.

Got myself all dolled up for the occasion, putting up the ‘hawk and gluing a bunch of rhinestones to my face for some extra sparkle.  Invited Shane to come join in the festivities and then hit up the store for provisions, such as snack foods for the masses and a bottle of whiskey.  The promise of not drinking for a while would be broken that evening, but I vowed to limit myself due to wanting to put on a good show.

When we returned there were cheers from the hungry guests who already arrived and the grill was fired up.  One of my partner’s friends came into the back at the right moment with a friend of hers, and we all toasted to an evening of fun with cups full of whiskey and Coke.  Dined on seared animal flesh and engaged in some interesting conversation, where I learned some things about certain sideshow performers that I probably really didn’t need to know.  At some point I wound up trading a shoe with that guy on account he had a sweet pair of New Rock boots with flames, and insisted I try one out.  Walking with two different shoes while drunk was certainly entertaining for the both of us.

Now I am not usually one to be very social with a bunch of people I don’t really know, but the alcohol in my system changed that very quickly.  They laughed at my jokes while complimenting my hair or makeup and I could not stop smiling as I thought about how easily Jon would have robbed them blind.  Having a good time apparently did not come without the cost of missing my love, especially since I had not received a letter from him in weeks.

My partner’s brother kicked off the evening’s festivities by shooting potatoes, then changed into a kilt and sleeveless military jacket.  Out of nowhere all these bottle rockets and fireworks are flying and popping in the air.  Half of the neighbors were in the backyard drinking alongside the guests, so no one was worried about the police being called.

Then it was showtime, gathering the drunkards on the deck as we revealed our props.  For once pitching the acts came easily, but that is likely due to be slightly shitfaced.  As I launched into the spiel for the Human Drinking Straw, I was worried that all the liquid and food in my stomach would prevent me from performing it well.  However, I remained calm and was able to slide the tube through my face without gagging once.  The coating of saliva on it as it was pulled out made a few people wretch, and I moved right to the Condom Floss which grossed them out further.  From there the acts flowed seamlessly, one right into the next where all eyes were on our actions as the audience hung on every word.  They were in awe of my Pierced Weightlifting, cheered for the Bed of Nails and exploded with applause as I pulled out the container of broken glass.

As the colorful shards are pouring out onto the tarp, I look up to see Shane and feel relieved that he did not miss the whole show.  For him I go old school, getting down on my knees to ‘wash’ my face in the glass, rubbing it in so much I know there are tiny pieces all over my cheeks.  Diving hands first into the pile, the shattered glass is spilled from my palms over and over to create a racket that ensures the audience this glass is real.  My shoes are tossed aside and I get right to it, pounding my feet to the rhythmic clapping accompanying whatever song happened to be playing at that moment.  The only sound I hear is the glass as it groans under my weight when I jump on it; there is silence that is followed by applause but I am not finished yet.  Jumping as high as my legs can take me, I call out for a step ladder and moments later it is positioned in front of the pile.  All eyes are on me now, but I only see his as I dive feet first off the top step.

Hauling the glass-filled tarp back into it’s container, everyone was coming over to offer congratulations on the show, with most favoring my acts.  Shane was there passing out business cards as he told them they should check out or website and book us for their parties.  Not even sure of how he had gotten a hold of them, but I definitely appreciated his willingness to promote.

In my inebriated state, I wind up occupying much of his time.  Shane apologized for missing my call earlier and cited having fallen asleep due to taking a Valium.  We chilled on the deck for a while just shooting the shit and catching up on what each other had been doing since school.  He knew I had been pursuing sideshow but was kind of surprised at the quality of the acts I could offer.  That opened up conversation about Outlaw Cirkus, including how I lost most of my Family, and Jon certainly was mentioned several times.  He was a gentleman and expressed concern about my other half getting jealous, but I assured him not to worry.  Admittedly I was not shy about physical contact, though we had both been doing it to each other all night in what seemed like a friendly manner.

Then Shane hits me with two straight compliments: “You have a nice rack, and don’t take this wrong way, but you’re good-looking so I might want to try something.

Color me flattered, I thanked him for what he said while trying not to blush though I probably failed.  It could have been the Valium talking, so I did not want to read that much into what he said.  We go inside [I kept myself in charge of giving him soda when he requested it] where he asks me about sword swallowing and why I wasn’t doing that.  The fact he remembered it was one of the things I learned at sideshow school was pretty impressive, and after offering a brief explanation, he wants to know what it feels like.

By then I have consumed a lot of alcohol, to the point where it has been the only liquid inside my cup for the past hour or so.  There was something about the way he kept looking at me that brought out a certain confidence and encouraged flirtatious behavior.  So I did all I could to describe the sensation of a solid object sliding down the throat when he says, “Stop, you’re turning me on.”

He takes my hand and leads me out front, away from the party and prying eyes where we are standing so close I can see each detail of the tattoos on his face and neck.  Distracted, I am surprised by the kiss but immediately find myself lost in it as we grope each other in the darkness.

Thanking him for coming, I prepare myself for the inevitable awkward parting of ways when he says there is a favor he wants to ask.  We are in my car driving to the beach in the middle of the night before hundreds congregated there for the holiday weekend.  The scene feels so familiar but I am too happy to notice and instead focus on the signs so I know which exit to take.  On the sand we smoke a joint and he offers me one of his pills.  Satiny grains float through my head as we make out under the boardwalk, pausing to smoke a joint and hold hands while strolling in the surf and counting stars.

Hours later the sun is starting to rise, deep pink washing over the sky and fading into purple clouds as we gazed at the greenish blue ocean.  We had breakfast in the form of pizza at one of the few places on the boards that was open at such an early hour and then headed back to my car.  Shane still had that look on his face coupled with a smile, kissing me once more before I dropped him off at his place.

Dazzled Emerald

A gem beloved by Cleopatra and dedicated to the goddess Venus by ancient Romans, the emerald has long been connected to fruitfulness, revival and  passion.  Contemporary jewelry fans use it to signify devotion and companionship, believed to contain effective healing powers relating to issues with  eyes, the spine, headaches and fertility.  Originating from the Greek word “smaragdos” which translates to “green stone”, the emerald is well-known for its rich color and is the most valuable gemstone in the world by weight.  A member of the Beryl family, the gem generates its green hues from elements of chromium that are contained in the crystals.  In Victorian times, it was customary to wear jewelry decorated with emeralds to represent the rebirth of nature, the deep green a reflection of the plant life that returned each spring.  Though almost all of them have small imperfections, they are seen as part of the character rather than something negative, which is a reminder to embraces flaws rather than trying to hide them.  Emerald has also been elected color of the year, appearing in garment form on celebrities during red carpet events, being promoted by alternative models wearing it in their hair, and comes in many variations of cosmetics one can use to create their own trendy beauty looks.

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dazzled-emerald-beauty

 

 

1 – Count on Illamasqua to provide magnificent matte shadow in the form of Permission, a cool emerald green that still has plenty of powerful pigments which are tremendously long-wearing.

2 – A reformulation of Urban Decay’s notable eyeshadow has resulted in Loaded, a remarkably smooth consistency delivering dense distribution of deep metallic emerald that blends in a uniform fashion and offers a crease-free finish.

3 – Enhance the vibrance of Pure Pigment No. 18 by mixing it with gloss to produce your own unique product, or using a wet angled brush for drawing precision lines, ensuring to add a pop of color to your face.

4 – Profoundly spectacular shade named for an iconic street, Rue di Rivoli is a metallic forest green Larger Than Life Eyeliner with a buttery texture  that does not smear or cake and presents incomparable 12-hour wear.

5 – For those who have an on-the-go lifestyle, where you are constantly in motion but still want to look great there is Mildew, a 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencil that is a deep forest green that goes on strong and lasts all night long.

6 – Give your lashes layers of volume with Smokey Lash Mascara, the green tint penetrating the roots of your lashes to lengthen and curl as you apply, an intensity that brings out all eye colors.

7 – Chic manicures begin with quality polish, something you don’t have to worry about when using Rampage, a dark green jelly varnish that has a glossy finish and exudes plenty of opulence whether using it alone or topping it in a coat of glitter for extra shine.

8 – Reign as jungle royalty in Zulu, deep vine green that is chip-resistant whether you are battling venomous plants, wild animals or a pile of paperwork preventing you from leaving work early to enjoy a sunny vacation.

9 – Though looked upon as a color of affection, emeralds may also incite jealousy, especially if your hair is dyed with Venus Envy, one of Manic Panic’s High Voltage vegan dyes  that transform ordinary tresses into gleaming locks befitting mystical creatures.

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dazzled-emerald-body-jewelry

 

 

1 – Golden spools studded with diamonds and genuine emeralds are a symbol of the quality available from Body Vision Los Angeles, where Ritual Evolution allows a transition to sophisticated jewelry without overwhelming the wearer.

2 – Filling the gap of large gauge eyelets is one trend I like to keep tabs on, and then discover intriguing designs such as Plumeria Eyelets by Anatometal that has bronze petals surrounding a synthetic emerald.

3 – The finish of Anatometal’s jewelry is recognized as one of the best in the industry, a prime example being their Super Gem Bling Eyelets which are a combination of refinement and sophistication, the large synthetic emerald in the center surrounded by a unique patter of alternating cubic zirconias and more emeralds.

4 – Setting the standard for majestic adornments comes in the form of Irish Eyes, a dazzling yellow gold septum piece featuring princess cut emeralds and several minute details that make it worth closer inspection.

5 – Four millimeters is the total measurement of this Tiny Flower, an 18 karat gold nose stud topped with six emerald petals that surround a cubic zirconia center to meet a certain level of refinement BVLA is known for.

6 – Another design that is three millimeters larger is the Emerald Flower which has a sapphire center and white gold tips at the edge of each petal, hand polished to a mirror shine.

7 – Threaded ends allow certain jewelry to become more versatile, or sometimes there is just a special occasion where 18 karat gold Tama Ends with synthetic emeralds are more visually appealing than the usual default finishes.

8 – Continuing along this floral theme, the Rose is an exquisite curved bar that has an explosion of gems set on each end composed of Chrysoprase and green cubic zirconias accented by yellow gold.

9 – Slightly more demure though sure to make a statement nonetheless, a Gold Flower Navel Curve constructed of 18 karat white gold provides sleek contrast to genuine emeralds and diamonds that make up a flower and rounded ends.

10 – Luxury is evident in every twist of filigree that makes up Ascott, listed as an Exotic navel curve that has plenty of aesthetic elements to capture the eye, ending in a 2.5 mm emerald gem.

11 – Ear projects are another way for piercing artists to showcase their skills, particularly when using a Gemmed Industrial Bar with Prong-set Gem Ends and Threaded Flower, the anodized green titanium serving as a colorful base for synthetic emeralds and peridot st0nes.

12 – Prepare to be covet when you wear a Polaris Pendant, the sleek design and variety of selection in customization appealing and in high demand, the anodized green titanium surrounding a deep purple opal seen here illustrating just one of the many possible combinations.

Drunkapalooza ’05: Day Five

[Originally written on this date in 2005]

For the past two months I had been looking forward to seeing the King of Surf Guitar at Asbury Lanes.  It’s no secret that I love surf music and consider it to be one of my favorite genres, and I have been a fan since I was thirteen when introduced to Dick Dale through Pulp Fiction.  At that oh-so impressionable age, I saw excessive violence and drug use backed by the most amazing music I had ever heard.   The title track struck a chord within me that left me wanting more, and I remember listening to the soundtrack on repeat until discovering the artists on-line.  When the opportunity came to see the man who provided that opening song, I knew I could not miss it and bought a ticket three weeks in advance fearing the show would sell out.  It was going to be in a South Jersey bowling alley after all.

The afternoon was spent dying my hair, and though I just had it done a few weeks ago, I saw some photos from a recent performance and did not like the way it looked as much as I initially thought.  At first the difference between the colors was obvious, but they have faded with time and went a bit murky – I was not keen on what the re-dying process would entail.  Instead I sectioned out my hair, dying half of it black and the other half red [there are six ‘stripes’ total] and instantly felt it suited me much better.  Plus my ‘hawk will look pretty cool when I put it up.

For the occasion that evening, I installed matching hair extensions which cascaded like a mane and I laughed at the thought of being a punk rock pony.  Which may have led to leaning back so the hair tickled my shoulders as I imagined my real hair being that long.  After a few giggles, I applied my makeup: shades of green and purple shadow; thick black cat eye; blue mascara; dewy cheeks and glossed lips.  Dressed in a black lace skirt, red silk blouse, platform vinyl Mary Jane’s and added red roses to my hair.  Wearing flowers when I go out or perform has become sort of a trademark and some day I hope to have a huge collection of them.

The drive was a  total blur, but that might have been on account I was thinking of all the times I had gone to Asbury with Jon, and how our last adventure there ended in an accident.  Incident is more appropriate.  Upon arrival I sat in my car and drank the Sambuca/vanilla Coke concoction I mixed earlier, where the alcohol overwhelmed the soda yet was still quickly consumed.

Outside the Lanes were some a-fucking-mazing hot rods and rat rods that must have belonged to members of a local car club.  It was rare to see one on the road, but to have that gorgeous collection of metal machines right in front of me took my breath away.  Spent a moment checking them out, waiting for the commentary on where a part of a particular rat rod came from, but there was only the dull noises coming from the Lanes and maybe the distant roar of the ocean that filled the night air beside me.

Inside was packed with many people, but that was to be expected.  Somehow I grabbed a spot on the right side of the stage where I had a clear view of Dick Dale wailing on his guitar.  The show itself does not lend itself to description.  There is something incredibly beautiful about songs driven by a stringed instrument that can sing like angles, rhythmic drums humming along with low bass as a vision forms inside the mind.  These notes tell a story, though whether it is filled with love, adventure, chaos or sadness is left to be interpreted by the listener.  Many hours have been spent assaulting my mind with this music, and even though I suddenly felt incredibly drunk, I was having the best time.

Somehow I managed to record about a minute of guitar-playing that was saved so I could share it with James, though the quality is questionable since I have not listened to it yet.

The show was over and I felt like it went by too fast, but that tends to happen when you are having fun.  Feeling a little too drunk to attempt driving, I walked down to the beach where I did some star-gazing and drew hearts in the sand.  Summer would be coming soon and my heart was dreaming of traveling highways in search of adventure, taking a break from what has been my life  thus far and really making an effort to establish a concrete relationship with Jon.  Why do all my thoughts wind up going back to him?

There are many reasons that I have documented over time, so I already know the answer.

Driving back in the darkness, I wanted to have the courage to go a different route.  Instead of returning to the house I was a stranger in, I would have the familiar warmth of my best friend and the comforting aromas that were carried on his skin.  Together we would ride into the sunset and dared not to look back, always ahead to what the future held.

Since Jon’s whereabouts was presently a mystery, I took the proper exit and came back anyway.

Drunkapalooza ’05: Day Four

[Originally written on this date in 2005]

That time of year has come again, when carnivals pop up in local lots and the children pester their parents until they agree to spend loads of cash on junk food and rides that will spin ’em sick.  Then you have the big shows, the circuses that bring entertainment to men, women and children of all ages.  Ringling Bros has two shows that tour venues across the country while Big Apple takes it to the next step by pitching a tent.  Attending either of these events has always seemed as normal to me as going down to the shore every summer.  My memories of being a young child at the circus are vague at best, but the instinct that drew me to this culture in the first place only grows stronger.

This time around it was the Cole Bros Circus and while I have read quite a bit about them, I had yet to see a performance.  As I was driving up the field hosting the show, the familiar sight of a giant red and yellow striped tent put a smile on my face.  The circus in all of its star-spangled glory had come to southern New Jersey and I was bursting with excitement.

My foot was still a little sore, or perhaps that is the excuse I needed to chug a mixture of vodka and that vanilla Coke, the contents disappearing quickly as I wanted to get a good seat.  Dined on a hot dog and popcorn as the show began, scanning the faces in the crowd around me as anticipation was satisfied with the entrance music struck up by the live circus band.  Every act was spectacular even if it was mostly traditional stuff like high wire and horseback riding; no matter what it takes a lot of practice to flawlessly perform those acts, and I have an enormous amount of admiration and respect for those who do so with great showmanship.  The most death-defying stunt was the motorcycle on the high wire, where a woman in a sparkling costume sat on a fixed bar as the bike rode up and down the tiny wire.  When it turned upside-down, I was cheering just as loudly as everyone else.

Trapeze is still my favorite act, and part of me would love to give it a try at least once.  Perhaps I have watched the movie of the same name one too many times, but it helped me understand why tradition is so important in circus.  That afternoon I watched a fifteen year-old boy fly through the air and pull off a triple, so clean it nearly brought me to tears, and I wondered if anyone else realized how difficult the feat was.

When the show had ended and people were filing out of the tent, I had the opportunity to talk with the ringmaster and probably gushed about circus history a bit too much while he listened politely.  Then we were in a discussion about sideshow, and he actually knew a fair bit of history of Cole Bros having their own congress of oddities in the past.  To me it is incredibly important for the ringmaster to be a liaison between the public and the circus, having the ability to answer a variety of questions with the utmost patience while staying in character.  The opportunity to talk history with someone like that was a great experience and I left the tent in a fantastic mood.

Somehow I navigated myself to a diner where I had a cup of coffee and piece of pie, knowing that after the last performance the circus would have to disassemble the marvelous world they created, pack it into a truck and haul it to the next spot they would be setting up.  Jon often spoke of what this process was like and that everyone had to work in harmony to get it done as efficiently as possible.  There were times where the tent came down at night in one town and was being put back up the next morning in a completely different one, where everything needed to be in place by show time that same day.  To an untrained eye the scene would be chaos, but the way he described it made it seem as though actions are guided by instinct and no one has to question what goes where.  How someone even learns that is mind-boggling, and to do it in what some would view as a stressful situation makes the accomplishment that much more impressive.

Before leaving I sat in my car and was overwhelmed by too many thoughts, which seemed to be a common theme during Drunkapalooza, pausing while my head swam with emotions.  All I could think of was how at that moment I wanted sell everything that I did not need or had no sentimental value, practicing for hours every day until Jon came back.  When he did return, we would reconnect as we always had and then leave the Garden State for a tour of the country, hitting diners, motels, roadside attractions and any other kitschy distractions we encountered, racking up miles and photos and stories.

If not today, than tomorrow.  If not tomorrow, than next week.

Drunkapalooza ’05: Day Three

Earlier this month I found out that Monster Mania Con 3 would be happening in Cherry Hill.  It is a major horror convention that draws hundreds of people, where you can meet goregeous celebrities and cult icons while browsing collectibles and other merchandise.  How fortunate that it coincided with Drunkapalooza.  Since I had other things planned for two of the other days, I decided to go on Friday.

Well, when I was checking the website I saw that Dee Snyder, Mister Strangeland himself would be there for a midnight screening of the film along with Robert Englund.  They would be doing a bit of a lecture prior to the movie and then a bit of banter afterwards, as well as being available for autographs.  Usually I do not really get excited about meet-and-greets since I am no crazed fan or anything like that, but I was in the mood to try something new.

A bottle of Sambuca and vanilla coke were my provisions for the evening, perhaps a nod to the major nostalgia I was feeling and the fact that my partner in crime was missing in action.  He would have loved to have been there to shake hands with the man who created Captain Howdy and made people uncomfortable by showing forced body modification procedures.

Driving to Cherry Hill seemed to take a lot longer than it used to, but I may have been caught up in emotions and whatnot prior to departure.  In any event, by the time I arrived the convention itself was pretty much over.  Vendors were beginning to pack away their wares but there was a line already forming where people waited for the chance to meet Dee.

While browsing what booths were left, I happened to run into the guy who hosts Karaoke Sideshow and inevitably had a chat about what had happened the previous evening.  He was very blunt when he said that the glass walking routine would no longer be performed at the venue, though I doubt it is solely due to the request of the Rail’s owner.  He babbled on about having seen other people get hurt performing the act and said something about how the risk of injury was not worth it for that crowd or some other bullshit.

Though I understand that gore is not the intent with the show, shit happens and you move on from it.  On the bright side, now I can say I have an act that has been officially banned by a venue and that’s got to count for something.  It may sound rude but I tuned him out as I tried not to be self-conscious about any scars that may have been visible.  You damn fools have no idea the amount of risks I have taken, the cuts and bruises I had, the blood I spilled while keeping a smile on my face.  Everything in sideshow comes with some degree of risk involved – if I failed to understand that or did not already accept the consequence years ago, I would not even be performing.

Anyway, the encounter left a sour taste in my mouth and and Strangeland was not going to be playing for at least another hour, so I went out to the car.  For the third night in a row I drank, though the decision was fueled by anger and frustration, furiously wishing I had a way to get in touch with Jon.  Instead I started doing shots of Sambuca and forgetting all about the vanilla coke.  Hey, my foot needed a drink.  The licorice flavor got too intense and I finally took a swig of the soda, hoping the scowl had vanished from my face.

Returned to the convention and was in a good mood so I paid the extra money to stand on line with the other autograph seekers.  It was worth hearing Dee say “Those are seriously stretched” in reference to my lobes as he shook my hand.  After he finished signing the photo he asked what I had sticking out of my purse, and at that point I gave him one of my business cards while explaining that I was a local sideshow performer.  He mentioned having just finished working with a troupe but was always looking to do more, though who knows if anything will come of it.

The encounter left me smiling and I followed signs to the auditorium where they were showing Strangeland.  Pre-film commentary was provided by Robert and Dee; there was hinting at a possible sequel in the future and other hilarious moments.  Even though I have seen the movie quite a few times in the past, for some reason it was fun being around a bunch of strangers, yet were were all there to enjoy the same thing.

My plan to make the Sambuca last for the rest of the weekend was scrapped when I returned to the house and grumbled to myself about how my foot needed to be drunker.

Drunkapalooza ’05: Day Two

[Originally written on this date in 2005]

Tonight was the first time something went wrong with a sideshow act in public.  While I do not discuss my Outlaw Cirkus performances, there were many moments when injuries were acquired, though whether that was on purpose or not is a mystery.  Despite outlandish claims, I am human made of flesh and blood, skin and bone; I am not impervious to pain but I pretend to be as it helps people understand that the acts I perform carry an inherent risk.

Sometimes I have to laugh at the fact I willingly walk, jump and lay in broken glass when it was a big bad evil as a child if encountered on the beach.  Memory dictates my sister cut her foot on a piece that had been lurking in the sand; there were tears and red stuff gushing everywhere.  The point being, no matter how gullible rubes are, glass is sharp – the more you test its boundaries, the more likely you are to find out how deep it can cut.

Earlier in the evening I was relaxing before heading off to the Rail, drinking the remaining watermelon flavored Smirnoff’s.  My daily meal was had earlier than usual which resulted in catching a buzz a lot quicker than I thought I would, but I did not want to consume any alcohol while I was at the venue.  A few too many slivers of glass in the feet convinced me it was a bad idea, not to mention it started to feel unprofessional since I did not want to give people the idea I needed to get liquored up before performing.

When I arrived at the Rail I was pleased to see the audience’s participation in that evening’s pajama theme.  Where else would you see people in their bedroom attire sitting in a bar waiting for sideshow entertainment other than in New Jersey?  Reasons why I love being a lifelong resident of this state just keep on growing.

Inside there were plenty of people complimenting my new hair, so that boosted my confidence a lot and filled me with adrenaline in anticipation of Electric Sideshow’s set.  It was all going incredibly well, particularly during the Human Drinking Straw routine when Windex was used as a substitute for the usual jar of skulls ‘n’ blood.  Following that with the Condom Floss and not having to struggle fishing it through my face got a great reception.  Some guy in the audience actually requested to keep it, and I was more than happy to oblige.

Then came the glass routine: introduction went smoothly and we thoroughly convinced the audience how deadly the shards were; microphone was placed next to the pile as I slowly shifted my weight onto it, every pop and crack amplified.  This is enough for the crowd to applaud but they have no idea of how much I am capable of.  Restraining myself, I feign hesitation and jump in the glass – they want me to do it again.  This time when I come down into the pile, I have a small pain in my right foot.  As mentioned, in the past I have had small pieces cling to the bottom of my foot that maybe create the tiniest drop of blood no one sees me wipe away.

Well, when I got off the glass and looked down, I realized I had a large shard sticking out of my foot!  Or should I say it was in my foot.

The act is cut short and I walk away from the stage to find a place to sit down.  My partner comes over to pull the piece out and the blood started to flow.  Not sure why he chose to do that, I was more concerned with the small puddle forming and then someone has a white shirt to clean up the floor.  Someone else is shoving paper towels into my hands, I look at them like ‘what do you want me to do?’, and finally I am escorted to a chair where the cut is examined.  Though it is a bit deep, the bleeding has stopped and I get a band-aid to put on it.

The ultimate compliment was paid to me at that point: “Out of all the sideshow acts here, yours always makes me cringe.

Yea, that’s my job.

For the remainder of my time at the Rail, people kept commending me on even having the guts to perform the routine in the first place.  It seems that while they were aware of my blood loss, they also understood it was part of the risk and the fact I was willing to put myself through that somehow earned their gratitude.

When I got back to the house I needed to be alone and went for a walk despite my foot being sore.  Too many thoughts about things I did once upon a time without ever worrying whether it was dangerous or not where filling my head.  Then the car accident.  Now this.  We are not invincible yet want to be perceived that way when defying logic by shoving nails in our noses, swords down our throats and needles through our flesh.  It is a strange position to be in, especially to make the choice to do these things to yourself.

All I know is that I had wanted Jon to come pushing through the audience to tend to my not so serious wound, treating me to water ice and much ribbing afterwards so I didn’t get hung up on things that didn’t matter.  Kind of like what I am doing right now.

Shit happens, that’s what Jon would say.  You can’t enter into this lifestyle under the delusion it will play out the way it does in books or movies; it’s real, dirty and gritty to the end yet there is something you still love about it.  Maybe I just want to hear the soothing twang of his voice as he chuckles and assures me everything will be alright.

Drunkapalooza ’05: Day One

[Originally written on this date in 2005]

Though I have been busy it feels as though something is off, and for once there is not much I want to say.  To be honest, this is related to Jon and how his behavior shifted following the accident we were in a few weeks ago.  For someone who used to willingly risk their life, it is unsettling to see him so shaken and I wind up feeling helpless on account I am unsure of what to do.

Getting the money from my settlement has led me to formulate an absurd plan I hope to execute quite soon, and perhaps that will change my mood.  While I am not in a bad one per say, I want to be moving in a different direction.  Almost eight months have passed and a certain something is still lacking at the moment, and the time has come to change that.

Last week I decided to switch up my hair color again as the black was becoming boring and I was struck with an idea as I  was playing around with my ‘hawk.  At the beauty supply store I purchased some Wella in ash blonde, natural blonde [three shades lighter than my natural color] and this lovely violet-based red.  When I returned to the house, I stripped the black out of my hair leaving it a nice deep gold shade.  Have to say that stripping hair is much different from bleaching it, as I was not left with annoying orange tones.

The next day I traveled up to E-town to dye my sister’s hair in exchange for having her help me with mine.  A slight interjection, if I may.  Being up there in the old ‘hood was a bit weird.  Though I do not really have any feelings towards the Asshole, passing by the place I used to live gave me chills.  The fact I still have dreams about him does not help, but I have no control over those and ignore them the best I can.

Commenced dying of hair; hers was easy since all I had to do was mix the dye, apply it to the hair and wait.  While mine had to be more difficult, though that was due to having three colors.  Each dye had to be mixed, sections were made and then the dye had to be carefully applied.  The pattern I laid out started at the front with the natural blonde, followed by the red, ash blonde, black [I couldn’t resist keeping just a little bit], ash, red and blonde again; the sidelocks were just bleached again.

Since I had no idea how the dyes would take over the stripped hair or if the roots would blend, I must say that the end result is quite pleasing, particularly the sidelocks which are light blonde fading to a gold tone.  Now all I have to do is be patient and wait for my hair to grow, and by Autumn the multiple colors should be more prominent.

For some reason, I came up with the idea it would be fun to see how many days in a row I could get drunk.  Apparently imbibing alcohol is the way I deal with overwhelming thoughts and emotions, which I have been experiencing a lot lately.  There was a restaurant having a grand opening up the street so I decided to check it out since I did not have to go far.  The place was absolutely packed when I arrived, with standing room only at the bar and a half hour wait for a table.  Since I was in the mood to try out one of their advertised margaritas, I did not mind waiting at first.  However, after forty-five minutes had passed and the bartenders shot off cap guns, I had my limit of being around people and decided to leave.

Wound up at a quiet diner instead where I had chicken fajitas and spent half my time staring out the window as though I was expecting Jon to show up at any minute.  Every day it gets warmer all I can think about is how much I looked forward to Summer on account it meant I would be performing with Outlaw Cirkus and going on adventures with my best friend.  Perhaps that is what has motivated me to see how much booze I can feed my body until it cries for me to stop.

Following a filling dessert, I walked from the diner to a liquor store and got there right before closing.  Which meant that I actually had to purchases the case of Watermelon flavored Smirnoff [malt liquor], as I was curious of how it would taste.  Okay, I also wanted to prepare myself for the heavier drinking I had planned for the weekend and was trying my best to save money.  Then again, having someone send me funds a few weeks ago to use as I wished helped me to not feel too bad about spending some.

The six-pack accompanied me to a wooded area of a local park where I spent the rest of the evening drinking and writing.