Remember that time I wrote for American Gods, the epic Starz show based on the Neil Gaiman novel? The premiere date has finally been set, and lovable nerds and mythology buffs and religious scholars all across the globe lept simultaneously into the air. Given that each episode has the scope of a movie, it took longer than anticipated to make, but its finally HERRRREEEE! Starz / April 30th. I can’t wait to watch. BELIEVE (In Gods, in that ominous White Buffalo, in me when I say, this show is going to be the best kind of weird, and in my episode, Kristen Chenoweth plays the Easter Goddess, so just….wait for THAT.)
Very pleased to announce that we have graduated from crappy, flammable Ikea furniture to sturdy, maybe slightly less flammable, moderately priced CB2 furniture. I am also proud to announce that the bookshelf contains a great many old issues of the Babysitter’s Club, and that Morrison plays video games on the TV. ARE WE GROWN UPS YET?
Once a year, there’s an awards show that’s actually not for the famous people, but for the people who write the words for the famous people to say — The Writer’s Guild Awards, which honors excellence in TV, Film, Video game writing and New Media. (This is Us was nommed for Best new show / we lost to Atlanta / truly an honor to lose to them.) Both writers and famous people gather at the illustrious Beverly Hills hotel. The writers, unaccustomed to wearing things other than the jeans they never wash, dust off their finery and get their hairs did, and are fetched by fancy car services sent by their various TV studios:
The writers, who are actually responsible for 92% of the world’s consumption of Trader Joe’s Olive Oil popcorn, and basically all of the different types of popcorns, are greeted immediately with a banquet.
The famous people are also in attendance, mostly to remind the writers why they are writers and not the face of Loreal, but also to give out awards. There is, in fact, a red carpet, for the writers to walk, where photographers scream their name because a nice man next to them has written their name on a piece of paper so that the photographers know which name to scream. The writer feels, just for the tiniest of moments, like a glamorous person, and can be heard saying things like I’m going to come at the camera from an angle, am I doing it? AM I COMING AT THE CAMERA FROM AN ANGLE? and also WHAT’S AN ANGLE?
Looking at my schedule for next week, I realize I’m meeting with four different people so that they might ‘pick my brain.’ As a classic Gemini, I’m of two minds about this. Mind Pt. 1: I am happy to do it, especially in honor of those who did it for me when I was just starting out. If I can offer any insight that might help a person get to where they want to be, then good on me, good on them, and good on kindness. Mind. Pt. 2: my brain is currently in a million places. It’s held together by frayed bits of old friendship bracelet and sour punch straws and the subpar bobby pins that really don’t hold any hair in place at all. If anyone were to, at this point, ‘pick my brain,’ it actually might lose its structure entirely.
When you are born to your parents, you are helpless and small and cute. Then, tragically, you grow up into just another jerk with a blog, and suddenly, THEY are the cute ones. Namely mine. They’re becoming grandparents for the first time next month, so they went on one last hurrah (though surely there will be plenty more hurrahs) up to Vermont to snow-shoe and snow-mobile and other snow verbs that are NOT SKIING AS THEY ARE SOON TO BE GRANDPARENTS. And basically the pictures reveal that it has been the cutest thing. As they are not huge picture posters, it is up to me, the jerk with the blog, to share with the world. PRESENTING, CUTE!
I was re-reading the Boxcar Children last night, like you do. I came across the part where the kids find the old broken dishes in the dump, take them home, clean them off, create a quick makeshift shelf in their boxcar, and arrange their new dishes on the shelf so that the boxcar might feel like home:
And it filled me with SUCH FEELING. I remember reading this part for the first time years and years ago. I remember how it made me long for a house with shelves that I could arrange things on. And I realize, that perhaps every time I can’t leave my house without making my bed or every time I put flowers on the table or stack dishes accordingly, and then do this psycho thing where I just kind of pause and look at the Order, appeased, I am living out this very boxcar children moment over and over.
When Trump called Meryl ‘overrated,’ I just could not stop thinking about how insane that sentiment is, given her accomplishments, and so I wrote a thing about it. I’m a political satirist now OKAY BYYYYYEEEEEEE!
To: info at the Hollywood foreign press dot com.
Bcc: hellomeryl at aol dot com.
Subject: My Lifetime Achievement award dot dot dot.
To Whom it may Concern:
First and foremost, I would like to thank you for the honor of the Cecile B. Demille Lifetime Achievement Award. I saw my acceptance speech as an opportunity to voice to what basically everyone has been thinking. Given what our country has endured over the last few months, it didn’t seem right to take that stage time to thank my mentors and children. I can send them emails and flowers give my children hugs and college tuition. They all know how I feel about them. I tell them daily. I also saw it as an opportunity to bring back bedazzling. Both, I thought, were effective. Until this morning.
This is awkward, but.
This morning I received word that I am ‘one of Hollywood’s most overrated actresses,’ which I first read as ‘Hollywood’s most overrated actress,’ but even though I’m just ‘one of,’ it still stings. I must say, I am deeply embarrassed. I think I can feel the very nudity of Eve. Here I was, parading myself around political fundraisers and charity events and cozy Italian restaurants and sometimes Nordstrom Rack thinking that I was, maybe, I’m embarrassed to admit – a woman of some talent. I’m not supposed to read my own reviews, but who truly does not? Show me an artist who does not secretly read their reviews alone in their bathtub and cry or scream or laugh quietly into the water and I’ll show you a liar. Or at least, an artist more self assured than myself. I once read someone describe me as the best actress of my generation, and I ashamed to admit that I believed it. And I have believed it for quite some time.
Until now. I feel an – inadequacy. A lack thereof. I feel a 4 on a scale of 1 to 10, I feel certainly not hot. Blood coming out of my wherever. I suddenly hate my nose again and it’s been years since I put that to bed. I am a nasty, nasty mess.
And so, after some deep reflection, I have decided that I must humbly give back the Award. I hope you understand. The Lifetime Achievement Award should and must go to an actor who is under-rated, or at the very least regular rated. Not to me.
PS. Just a heads up, I will be sending similar emails to the Emmys, the Oscars, and to The Screen Actor’s Guild, regarding all of those awards, too.
PPS. Oh and also BAFTA, Critics Choice, People’s choice, Cannes, AFI, Kids Choice awards, Elle women in Hollywood, The National Society of Film Critics, the British Independent Film awards, The Palm Spring International film festival. And my honorary Doctors of Arts degrees from both Princeton and Harvard. All going back via UPS mail.
PPS. Oh and the National Medal of Arts. I always forget about that one. OH and the Presidential Medal of Freedom, too. I am not worthy. I will have my hand prints paved over while I’m at it, too. All shall be righted; all shall be returned.
After years of resistance, I finally gave in yesterday and tried my first meditation class. I’ve been resisting it because 1.) I do not like to sit still b.) I do not want to be a person who says things like, yesterday I tried my first meditation class. But while in Thailand and Hong Kong, I kept hearing about it and witnessing it, and then once home, my friend Alexis, who has a kindred spirit rapid fire brain, told me she’d started it and that it had completely changed her relationship to her own life — so I was like, FINE. Lord knows I can stand to quiet my head. It was a simple, intro, 30 minute class, and while the teacher kept telling us that we were trees (and also, I’ll admit, some pretty helpful stuff about what it is to be alive, the simplicity of that) I tried very, very hard to sit STILL, and to not judge my own thoughts, or the moments themselves. My thoughts were something like okay is it working I think maybe it’s working okay let me listen to what he’s saying and try and remember it wait what did he just say I already forgot I should really be writing this down okay maybe I’ll just breathe and pretend I am a tree did he say tree or maybe he said flower okay this is not working but I’m breathing and I think I’m still, am I still? Morrison would like this he would be so much better at this than me maybe I should bring him to a class we could do it together and maybe we could get tacos where are tacos what kind of tacos what kind of tortillas tacos hmmm I AM A TREE I AM A TREE. I’m going to take the fact that I basically sat still for 30 minutes as an accomplishment, and try a few more times. I think I see value in finding a way to transcend the whir of my thoughts, and just Be, not ten minutes ahead or two hours behind, just simply where I am, alive, and grateful for it.
One of my favorite things about Thailand was Gae, our guide for the bike tour / cave hike. We’d been in Thailand for about four days at that point, and all the Thai people we encountered spoke little to no English. Enter Gae, married to an American, nearly fluent in English, with a LIMITLESS AND INFECTIOUS ENERGY, SOMEHOW NEVER SWEATY, and lastly, with a deep love of selfies:
I was able to ask her all the questions that had been accumulating in my mind about everything from Thailand’s monks to the Burmese people to how Shrimp happen. In turn, she kept taking pictures of us like we were famous people. HEY LOVE BIRDS! GO OVER THERE! SIT THERE, IN LOVE! She’d say, and point her phone at us. LIGHTS! CAMERA! ACTION!
Once satisfied: OKAY, WE GOT IT!
Folks, if you’re just tuning in / playing along from home: we are in fact leaving on our honeymoon TOMORROW instead of YESTERDAY. Also, this is a terrible game show. There are no prizes. Maybe find something else to do. Other announcements related to the trip that I am going on, but YOU are not going on, so why do I force you to ride the waves of its drama with me?!: I’m not bringing my computer. Huge, I know. While I COULD get some cool staged pictures of myself ‘working,’ I am more excited to disconnect from my beast friend for a few days for the first time in years and years. I have nightmares monthly that I leave it somewhere. I will now do so on purpose, open my brain back up, confront my bad handwriting, force myself to not google my own thoughts, but instead just have them. The real question: will I blog? I can do so from my phone. And so, PROBABLY.